family, goodness, life

That’s a proud mommy

My folks are having trouble hiding their pride that I’ve finished my Master’s degree.  Mom sent out an email to some family friends that read thusly:

As Friends who have encouraged and watched this one grow, thank you for all of your encouragement and love.  Many of us have chatted about [tigerlilytoph] recently, and she just aced her thesis and had a paper accepted by the International Social Sciences Conference.  Very proud of this woman, and please enjoy her glory. What a Woman!

So sweet.  And of course all the people on the thread wrote back words of love and encouragement.  I was so touched.  Of course I had to write back:

Thank you, family of my heart.

I turned 30 in February, and I can’t tell you how excited I am to see what the next decade brings. You’ve all played pivotal roles in my development into who I am today; so much encouragement, such excellent humor and love for so many years. Luke, my gentle giant, teddy bear and jungle gym. Anthony, always a welcome companion with a ready laugh and sharp mind. Mary Kay, my literary mentor, without whom my love for writing might never have awoken. Marge and Peggie, the matriarchs of our tribe from whom I continue to draw strength. Chris, Cheryl and mom, the women who danced with me and served as the clever, hard-working, paycheck-earning, loving role models I needed. Each of you, lighting a different candle within me, even now.

I would be diminished without you. Thank you.

So much love,


I’m so lucky to have had these people in my life from such a young age.  It really goes to show how important your parents decisions are, and what a huge impact (good or bad) something as seemingly personal as the kind of friends they choose have on a child.

badness, humor, work

Haiku distraction: Motivational speaker

At an Office Job meeting some months ago, the invited speaker was a college football coach (for some reason).  He went to the podium and spoke enthusiastically (and endlessly) about the football players and so on, none of which had to do with the parents or their kids.  And yet on he went, giving me material to haiku about.


Facebones: the ultimate motivational speaker

Facebones: the ultimate motivational speaker

He’s got that gung-ho
attitude.  He’s a winner.
Euthanize him, please.

Coaches are basically motivational speakers with hundreds of sports plays smashed into their heads.

Coach Buck Bobby-Joe
Johnson has a story for
everything today.

“Lemme tell you about this one kid,” he said many, many times.  None of the stories were pertinent to the meeting’s purpose or its participants in any way.  But football is huge, and the players are mini-celebrities, so he had a pretty captive audience.

He says it’s “college
football, not football college.”
Why’s he our speaker?

Needless to say, I was unimpressed with his presentation, nor am I particularly enamored of any celebrity athlete-types.

For a football coach,
he sure is enthused about
education.  Right?

He kept emphasizing the football players’ scholarly pursuits, as if that’s why any of them attend college (or that anyone in the room gave a shit).

pointless pointless pointless

pointless pointless pointless

Then someone else stood up to speak, as if that’s what we needed: more monologuing.

This guy’s got a mouth
on him.  The crowd loves him.  These
parents are sold now.

This guy had started his own email/blog thingie about college sports, and could not stop talking even though he kept saying, “I’ve been speaking too long,” and “I said I was going to keep it short, and I’ll finish soon.”  Still, the crowd was with him, so he had no reason to shut up.

I’d had enough of listening to white men wax poetical about their hard-on for football.  It was time for dessert.

The vanilla cake
was apparently made by
Hello Kitty.  Yum!

The cake had lace and pink shit all over it.  I couldn’t figure out what was edible and what was decoration.  I think the point was to kill us with sweetness in more ways than one.


every attendee at the meeting resembled this guy

every attendee at the meeting resembled this guy

“The most precious gifts
are those unwrapped by the heart.”
Christ, what does that mean?

The time then came for the parents to endlessly thank each other for all their endless giving and “hard work.”  The speeches were the worst part.

So many awards!
How thankful can a group of
volunteers be?  Guh.

What a monumental waste of time.  So much money spent on gifts and certificates and crap, I could not believe the self-congratulatory nonsense my coworkers and I witnessed in just three long hours.  I felt like shouting, “Feed some homeless people, you rich, white bastards!”

On an unrelated note, my search for Facebones pulled up this “Jem” (pun very much intended).



goodness, humor, work

Haiku surprise!

Remember this post when described how I discovered first-hand that all-day meetings do, in fact, exist?  I just found the haikus I wrote during the last meeting that day.  I’m pretty pleased with them:

I write haikus to
keep myself awake sometimes.
This is one of them.

I needed to demonstrate to my new coworkers that I was creative, playful, and overall the kind of person they’d look forward to working with.  I had told them about this haiku entertainment strategy, so I needed something to ease them into it.  After that it just snowballed into a poetic storm of sass and topical comedy. (names changed for the sake of my precious anonymity)

Hey, Elizabeth.
Guess what I’ll do after this.
That’s right: ICE CREAM, BITCH.

if only they were all this adorable

At UCC, the
kids can major in drinking.
Drinky, drinky, drink.

The issue at hand was obviously the kids drinking habits.  College kids.  And the parents are apparently appalled at the amount they’re drinking and how easily they can get a drink.  This discussion continued for about five minutes before I felt the need to point out that the best way to keep your kids from blacking out every Thursday night was to make them feel so good about themselves while sober that they didn’t feel the need to get drunk to feel good.  I pointed out that this was the responsibility of the parents.  The reception to that comment was… mixed.

I just feel so sharp
in my little white sweater
and silver bull studs.

I wore the most “professional” clothing I owned that day so I would represent the office well at all the meetings.  I looked like quite the little executive.

"we just want our kids to grow up into their own happy, well-balanced, totally terrifying adult basking sharks."

The power couple
could sell me a live gator,
and call it a purse.

The head of this parents group at the time was this married couple who had more energy and enthusiasm about this group in their left pinkie toe than I have in my entire body about most things.  They’re a tough act to follow, and hypnotizing to watch.  Like a shark attack.

The purple lady
is inconsolable.  Pull
yourself together.

I don’t recall what it was about, but it must have been great to warrant it’s very own commemorative haiku.  Wait, is a haiku commemorative if it’s written as something happens instead of afterwards?  Crap.

Basketball event
basket ideas: tattoos,
botox, lip piercing.

This basketball event required baskets of donations to raffle off and make some money for the parents group.  Wine, sweets and sports memorabilia were popular items.  Not very exciting.  The event went off without a hitch though, and everyone loved their baskets.  But seriously, imagine how fast the botox basket would have reached its top value.