goodness, humor

Alaska… maybe not

how did sledding not make the list?  HOW?!

how did sledding not make the list? HOW?!

Diminutive Friend and I have been chatting about doing a vacation together.  At first it was going to be Dublin, but Teacher Friend wants to do that with us (but hasn’t been available because she’s always travelling to amazing places.  It’s a rough life).  So we’ve decided to go somewhere else: Diminutive Friend suggested Costa Rica or Alaska.  Costa Rica would be a great reason to bone up on my Spanish, and I’ve never been.  But Alaska has its hooks in me.  The wilderness!  The wildlife!  The Northern Lights!  The indigenous cultures!  It all sounds amazing, until you Google “stuff to do in Alaska,” at which point that electric, adventurous feeling wears off, and cold, boring reality sets in.  Here’s a “Top Ten” list (written in all seriousness)  that seems to summarize everything you won’t mention to friends upon your return from the dullest vacation ever:

1. Visit the Native Heritage Center (this actually sounds great)
2. See a glacier
3. Visit the knife factory
4. Go outside
5. Visit the other museum
6. Look for wildlife (“remember to wear your bear bells”)
7. Go fishing
8. Fly around
9. Get drunk and eat a reindeer (no, really)
10. Take a train ride

This incredible list is followed by “buy a fleece jacket.”  Yikes.

So… I hear Costa Rica’s nice this time of year…

(seriously though, I still want to visit Alaska somehow)

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badness, goodness, humor, life

Protected: The best of times and worst of times: A loving rant about Diminutive Friend

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badness, goodness, humor, life

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Flo

Going to an all-girls’ middle school and high school skews one’s perspective of the world, and in so doing, failed in small part to prepare me for the very different social dynamics of a not-all-female environment.  There were about 500 people in my high school, only 112 in my graduating class, and we all more or less knew each other.  I had become so accustomed to being around nothing but social, friendly females that I assumed I could do what I did in high school (be friendly) and get the same result (friendship).  Not so.  I walked into my first college class, sat next to a female student and immediately introduced myself and started up a friendly conversation.  She was shocked into near-silence, and I was shocked by her shock.  We created a shock-echo that sounds like nothing and vibrates at a frequency between awkward and stage-fright.

pretty accurate

pretty accurate

I encountered another social speed-bump when sharing a suite of four bedrooms with seven other women in my freshman dorm.  One of them called out to me with a question, and I came out of my room with tampon in hand, joined them in the living room and started chatting.  A few sets of eyes kept darting to my hand.  ‘What are they looking at?’ I thought.  Not one to allow the elephant in the room to go unmentioned, I ended a sentence with, “Dah-ling,” and pantomimed smoking my tampon like a 1950’s Hollywood starlet.  A couple eyebrows shot up.  ‘Why aren’t they laughing?’ I thought.  I had found a point of cultural disconnect that I never knew existed between white, female Americans of the same age on a topic we all shared.  Initiate shock-echo.

In high school, I went through a rapid shift of hiding tampons when I went to the bathroom to tossing them into the air for fun while I waited outside for a stall to open up.  I give credit to the healthy self image the school managed to help instill in me as a female while still teaching Catholic values (quite a balancing act), and to my parents.  The first day of my first menstruation, my parents congratulated me.  My mom gave me a pad, then told my dad, who came rushing into my room and literally said, “Congratulations, sweetie!” before pulling me into a bear hug.  It was a healthy environment for a young woman, which did nothing to prepare me for the shame and secrecy I would be expected to keep surrounding my menstrual cycle in the future.

she's so stylish

she’s so stylish

I work in an office now, and I wonder where the line is for unprofessional behavior when I comes to dealing with natural bodily functions.  Is walking to the bathroom with a tampon in hand unprofessional?  My knee-jerk reflex says yes, but why?  Is it any less professional than carrying a box of tissues around if you’re sick?  Using a tampon is evidence of health and fertility, while being sick is proof of a weak immune system, and a threat to the health of everyone in a twenty-foot radius.  We should be more offended by the sickly than the fertile, given that menstruation isn’t a catching illness, and yet the male (and sometimes female) population occasionally reacts like I’m walking through the halls of my office holding a grenade instead of thanking me for doing what must be done to keep myself from bleeding all over everything for days at a time.  YOU’RE WELCOME, PEOPLE.

This needs to stop.  There’s no reason for me to feel ashamed of my ability to menstruate.  I’m capable of building an entire person.  That’s AMAZING.  I should get high-fives on my way to the bathroom, not shunned and encouraged to keep what is essentially a super-power in the down-low.  I’ve never understood the culture of shame that surrounds menstruation.  So I’m done hiding my tampons at work.  Anyone so horrified by the blatant display of my (and by extension, half of the human population’s) desire to keep blood stains out of the office chairs is welcome to explain themselves.  Starting now.

bring it

bring it

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badness, humor

Brain, or uncritical devotion to your religion: pick one.

This was my good deed for the day last week.  Some high-schooler on my feed (daughter of one of my parents’ work friends I think?) posted this, and I just had to respond (with humor, because anything else is met with defensive lashing-out).

Meahwhile, wtf, who writes this stuff?  Do people think these things just get pooped out of Jesus’ butt and get flushed straight into Facebook?

nonsense

also, god hates when you humblebrag all over twitter.

Objectively, this is an elegant equation: Religious + Facebook capable = particularly exploitable.  Therefore, religious chain letters that claim that all who read it “are being tested” is a perfect concoction for mindless reposting.  Those crazy enough to think that the creator of the universe is watching whether they’re gullible enough to repost anything that implies they might be punished if they don’t will repost.  Those who realize that the person who created said chain letter couldn’t possibly know whether it’s an officially god-sanctioned test (y’know, like Abraham almost killing his son) won’t.  If this had a Pepsi label in it, it would be a genius viral marketing tool.

 

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badness, humor, work

Just say no to drama, gurl

wait... we have a kid?

wait… we have a kid?

I work with parents at Office Job, and over the course of the past year they’ve really been misbehaving.  As a direct result, their PTA has been disbanded by order of the school, which will effectively eliminate all the problems and ensure that the parents who really want to focus their efforts on the school and their students will have every chance to do so without all the selfish politicking and unproductive complaints.

You’d think this would chill out Hollywood Coworker, who dealt with a big chunk of the drama.  You’d think she’d be happy and relaxed now that our office can focus our efforts on helping parents feel connected to the university and all the other work we have to do (because dealing with the PTA isn’t even 10% of what we do, much to the surprise of the majority of the PTA).  You’d think she’d be just fucking jazzed about this change, and excited about taking the reins of an organization that has gone badly off-track.

And yet.

She approaches my desk at least once a week since the disbanding and says something like, “I just have this really bad feeling that there is plotting going on behind the scenes, in the shadows, y’know?”  “I don’t think we’ve seen the last of the problem people.”  “I just know the drama isn’t over.”

And I just look at her like:

Wash knows what's up

Wash knows what’s up

Because come on.  Seriously?  At this point she’s stressing about imaginary problems.  How am I supposed to commiserate?  I’m feeling really positive and optimistic about this coming year, and she’s dragging all this fucking baggage around from last year like, “Oh no, what will we do with all this fucking baggage?”  How about letting it go instead of proudly displaying it like a white-collar battle scar under the guise of preparing for the next impending (read: non-existent) disaster?  Cus… that might work.  So… maybe do that.

I realize she wants to feel useful and important, and dealing with drama can be addictive for some people, but it’s not healthy, and more importantly, IT’S OVER.

save it for the drama llama, gurl

save it for the drama llama, gurl

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