Tag Archives: Humor

Calendar of Meh…

And now… Just in time for the flipping of the yearly dial… the moment we’ve all been waiting for with so much anticipation…

Ok, so, not so much. While this is something I’ve been threatening to do for many, many years now, the rest of the world is probably not really given it much though. But wait, perhaps you merely do not know what you have been missing! It is the Calendar of Meh! What, you may ask, is the Calendar of Meh? Well, I’ll tell ya. Quite a number of years ago (the number is immaterial and too large for my vanity) as a colleague and I sat sleep deprived and unmotivated, we discussed the names given to the days of the week. Yes, we knew the etiology of the modern nomenclature (which alone is somewhat confusing and pantheist, but again a topic for another day perhaps), but somehow, the old days on the calendar do not properly reflect the true modern approach to our work week. Thus, we came up with a modern day cubical-denizen/slave’s version of the weekly diary… I’m sure the calendar companies will soon come banging on the door:

  • Sunday – Dread Day or Day of Dread or Please don’t make me go to (school, work, etc.) day… oh yeah.
  • Monday – there is really nothing worse than the original here.
  • Tuesday – Bastard child of Monday, because you know it’s true (#onlyTuesday).
  • Wednesday – Hump Day… Congrats, you made it halfway! You know it’s all downhill from here.
  • Thursday – Friday Eve, because you know most people just treat it like part of the weekend anyway.
  • Friday – because honestly there is nothing to improve here, unless we just say Wahoo!
  • Saturday – Recovery Day, because that is what you are all doing, admit it.

Seriously, doesn’t this much more accurately describe how we all approach the days of the week? However, once I started thinking about how the week is described in a more descriptive approach, do the months need an overhaul? It’s not like we’ve had a good calendar revamp since 1752 when the Gregorian version was adopted by many (though not all) of the societies of the planet, generally giving us the rhyme about 30 and 31 days with that strange 28-day outlier that has to catch up with an extra day every 4 years (Leap Year… why is it leaping? I certainly do not feel very energetic during February, but I digress). Anyhow, I thought I’d try my hand those old monthly labels as well (keep in mind some of these might be a tad fluid instead of the set 28-31 day deal)… Here goes:

  • Checkuary – the period of time, regardless of how many days it takes, where we all participate in the crossing out, erasing, and re-writing of the year number as we get used to it changing from the previous cycle…
  • Brass-Brassiereary – which is easily easier to spell than the original and takes its name from northern hemispheric inhospitable temperatures…
  • Irish Month – Everything is green. Everyone is inebriated. No one cares about your DNA.
  • Taxuary – that time of year where we sit down and balance the accounts to see how much the government has picked our pockets and whether or not they have to give any back…
  • Is-it-summer-yet? – Students can’t focus. Office workers take longer lunches.
  • Midsommerish – More accuracy than snark, but there it is.
  • Onfire – Mostly because of the cookouts and fireworks. The whole month seems to be about setting things on fire.
  • Meltuary – Humidity and dog days, time to embrace air conditioning and icy beverages.
  • ParentalGleeuary – Conversely this is also TeacherGloomuary… take that as you will.
  • DressUpMonth – On a personal note, this is my personal favorite…
  • @#$%-I’ve-not-started-shopping – Because, let’s be honest, we all kept telling ourselves “I’ve got plenty of time yet… “
  • BuyersRemorse or TURNOFFTHATDANGMUSIC – dealer’s choice…

Some of the names are still a work in progress. I’ve considered other contenders such as “RunfortheBeachuary” and “STUPIDTURKEYANDCOOKIES MONTH” (or possibly “ALL.THE.PIE.”). However, there may be others that you yourself might consider more fitting for your own household. That is the beauty of Meh. It works for who you are. And that concludes my contributions to the calendar business. I’m sure I’ll start getting offers any minute…

For your use, there is a PDF template (below link) you can print and use as your personal Calendar of Meh and one for 2018 should you wish to use it… Happy New Year.



Prepping for Surgery and a sense of the absurd


I know I’ve been quiet for a while. Seems like time got away from me, and a severe case of writer’s block apparently required surgical interventions or at least the threat of them to budge.

Surgery is a funny thing. I don’t mean funny “Haha,” but funny peculiar. Think about it. In order to fix something in our body, someone with letters after their name and hopefully a lot of impressive training is going to actually injure and go poking around inside what is generally supposed to be a closed and intact system. Now, I’m not knocking medical procedures. We’ve accomplished some astounding things, and it seems like every day they are improving the methods to prevent complications. Modern surgery and the accomplishments thereof are a far cry from the near butchery of the antecedents. Still, I wait with great impatience for the days when I can take a pill and grow a new kidney (or any other organ for that matter… Points to the people who get the reference).

And yet… there are parts of the process that still cause me to ponder, ruminate, become anxious, and aye, even cause me to shake my head with humor and irony. If you haven’t yet figured it out, I’m no stranger to the surgical theater. Due to a number of genetic quirks and other accidents, I’ve been the recipient of quite a number of procedures, mostly to my skull… No, they still haven’t found that brain they have been seeking. All the operations in question were to my jaws and dental structures. In fact, after one surgical procedure, I could walk through a metal detector stark naked and set it off. I quite enjoy to this day the look on the faces of x-ray technicians when they see the odd collections of wire embedded in my jaw hinges. But, I digress… I do that a lot, which is why this blog even exists, when we come down to it. If my brain always stayed on an expected track with normal and logical thought processes and zero tangential traipses through the ether, none of this rambling nonsense would be out there.

The interesting part of all the surgical curiosity is the instructions that the patients are given before (and after) the processes to insure the best possible outcome. Honestly, even understanding the reasons behind the directives does not always alleviate my perpetual ruminative escapades. Without fail, my mind will wander about after reading or hearing specific instruction and think about various aspects including what would happen if one didn’t actually follow the directions given. This last bit is frequently not really a good idea if one is, in fact, the patient. While I have been privy to a number of surgeries and recovery wards as observer or clinician, my imagination can still become quite creative enough to depict scenarios that are not only completely unrealistic, they would put the best of the horror directors to shame. So, as I said, not the best mental occupation for the intended target… I mean subject of the surgeon’s skill.

What brought on this recent rambling through my cranium is, as you might have surmised, that I am once again going under the knife. Nothing terribly serious, but as they do say there are inherent risks with all surgical procedures. It is another oral surgery, and I’ve become, after nearly three decades of experience with this form of intervention, somewhat inured to the general angst… but not entirely immune. I will occasionally and inexplicably have bouts of anxiety that are only relieved by contrarily imagining the worst possible situations and outcomes and making a complete farce of the whole ritual of instruction. Today, for instance, I receive the call (Like ya do) from the surgeon’s office reminding me of my appointed time and confirming that I had not left the state, country, or planet accidentally. I assured them that I was Earthbound and in the near vicinity still. As the caller was about to ring off, I asked if there were any instructions. To which, the lady gave me the usual “Nothing to eat or drink 6-8 hours before. Wear short sleeves. Bring someone to drive you and all your money.” Ok, I might have exaggerated the “all your money bit.” I think they only want most of it. Honestly, health costs in America… but I digress… again. I’m just a digressing fool today.

Anyhow, the caller ended the conversation at that point, and left me to my usual mental calisthenics about all of the foregoing… and of course the impending doom. I was so caught up in all of it that my usual morning conversation with my friend was the recipient of the overflow. I expressed to him that the worst part (aside from the monetary extortion) was that part about not eating or drinking. This is normally not a problem for me. It would be unlikely that I am imbibing or participating in a repast after midnight, but now… I will be thirsty as hell at 3:00AM. It’s true, and totally psychological. I consume more than enough liquid to keep myself hydrated (water, of course… a woman cannot survive by coffee alone, but without the blessed bean everyone else might die), but because someone told me I could not have anything to wet my whistle after the appointed hour, I will develop cotton mouth that would make the Mojave look like a lush oasis. Additionally, the eating thing… I’ve been in an appetite lull for a few weeks. That is the pendulum swing from the periods of time when I can’t seem to sate the empty cavern of my gut and want to eat ALL THE THINGS. For whatever reason, I just haven’t really been neck deep in the trough. I continue to eat small meals and snacks and consume protein shakes in an attempt to keep the energy stores going, fuel the physical machine, and avoid metabolism shut down, but otherwise… meh, just not that hungry. However… now, because I have been told I am forbidden to eat after midnight, I will very probably become quite ravenous at 12:01AM and nothing will do but to eat an entire wildebeest. Maybe it isn’t surgery that is so odd. It might actually be the perversity of my own mental nature. Nah! Surely that cannot be it…

On top of all the cogitating about the instructions for all good patients, I also, due to my years of experience, know what to expect in the aftermath. Again, this is where we have advanced beautifully from days gone by when I would have been laid up for hours or days in recovery and med-surge units while the anesthesia worked its way slowly from my system, groggy, nauseous, and grievously hung over (I usually try to reserve that for New Year’s Day). Now, the modern cocktail they use wears off very quickly with very few lasting effects. There is one, however, and it is a doozy. Because this is, as I said, oral surgery, one of the things they use is atropine. For those who don’t know, atropine dehydrates. In other words, it dries up everything. This makes it more convenient for people trying to deal with any and all things inside the saliva factory that is the human mouth. The natural consequence of using this tool is that there is a rebound effect when it wears off. It rather seems like everything on your face (and sometimes the rest of your body) is trying to liquefy or melt. Combine this with the local anesthesia that they use, and voila, snotty, drooling, tearful mess… I feel like a toddler left for the first time at daycare. On top of that, I cannot actually feel from my nose to my chin and so all attempts clean up aisle 4 are rather like Gumby trying to wipe the nose of a latex Richard Nixon Halloween mask. Super sexy, right?

And just like that… sense of the ridiculous appears to be my saving grace from rising anxiety levels. It is just virtually impossible to be scared of something that turns me into Tim Conway’s dentist routine or my own one-woman sitcom. See ya in the aftermath…

Social Media trolling or screaming obscenities from the safety of a fortress…


So, as many of the ramblings posted here have done before, this one takes inspiration from my experiences as well as conversations that crop up between friends. This particular one stems from a couple of different conversations, but the most recent went something like this:

Friend:  Yeah, I think people screwing with my plans is about the second or third most rage-inducing thing in life.
Me:  I sorta had gave up the rage factor on people messing with my plans about the time Saddam Hussein decided to vacation in Kuwait.
Friend:  Never give up your rage, without it, what ever would we do in traffic?
Me:  Same @#$% people do on social media, rage impotence from behind the shield of anonymity provided by computers and tinted windows?
Friend:  No, that’s for amateurs. The pros roll down their windows and make sure the intended target’s attention is well and truly garnered first.
Me:  Funny how so many get super brave and enormous social media balls fueling insults and threats and other bad manners. Yet, in person… they talk behind backs and generally smile and nod when confronted.
Friend:  It’s been a while since anyone threatened me on the social medias <sigh>.

From there we considered our mutual bent towards an unusual nature that is willing to embrace erudite vocabulary, intermittent swearing, and colorful metaphors without the benefit of shielding or anonymity. The friend’s observation is that most individuals are generally afraid of one or two things are likely outcomes in those situations: 1) actual conflict and 2) how it will make them look. For me, I tend to pick my battles. What I’ve discovered is that most of the battles in the virtual world aren’t worth my energy to have a truly emotional reaction. On the other hand, the traffic shyte… I still let rip with the best. It’s cathartic, and as long as my phone is on mute, I’ll remain employed and on good terms with my mother.

So, contrary to the behaviors of others, I’m least likely to stir the pot in the social media arena. I tend to avoid the hyperbolic and generally take a wide berth from flame wars and general trollery. Very unlike my behavior in person where my filters seem to be perennially blocked, and I’m likely to just let fly with whatever snark is lurking between my ears. The outcome is frequently unfortunate given any situation where observation will lead to less than complimentary commentary. The results are that my internal dialog choses to make itself externally present… fatigue often weighs into the balance towards a more likely chance of this occurrence. I haven’t decided if it is my general disapprobation of the cowardice inherent in that anonymity and safety of the keyboard diatribe and polite silence or if it is just a basic lack of self-preservation on my part. Given my father’s commentary on my usual modus operandi as “snatching defeat from the jaws of victory,” I’m going with the latter. Whatever the underlying cause, I would be the child at the side of the road pointing and saying “But he’s naked!” Honesty is not always the best policy. I’m learning, and it helps that frequently the overriding indolence will prevent my announcements as much as any prudence. It just simply isn’t worth my time or energy for the most part.

What IS it about humanity that they grow very large gonads when they feel they have the protection of invisibility or invulnerability? And why is it when these same types are confronted with their own flavor of incivility that they tend to run crying to whatever level of protector they can find pleading bullying and crying “FOUL”. Seriously, I’m astounded at the amount of nasty, hurtful, and semi-libelous (it is technically in print) bullpucky people fling at each other on the book of faces or twits. I cannot imagine most of said asshats having the actual (rather than virtual) cahones to say the same to someone’s face.

In the same way, I’ve actually observed people in traffic and on interstates having verbal and nonverbal seizures in response to our fellow travelers on the road. It’s times like these that make me rather wish for installed loudspeaker systems so that the targets of their ire can truly appreciate the creativity (or lack thereof). I would also like to install little electronic scoreboards so that we might give appropriate feedback. “Excellent use of extemporaneous verbiage. I give it a 8.7. Had to deduct points for lack of feasibility.”

What is completely dissimilar about the two different venues of diatribe is that most of our fellow journeymen (and women) on the road are unlikely to be aware or suffer any of the slings and arrows we spew forth in their general direction. Except in the most spiritual of ways, that verbal badinage of ill will hovers in a cloud around our own head and, for the parents in my readership, is occasionally reflected back from the mouths of babes who have overheard. The targets drive blissfully on in ignorance and probably dangerous levels of driving incompetence. On the other hand, the witting or unwitting target of hateful vocabulary flung upon the interwebs of social media and commentary are readily visible. Whether they know from whence the attack arises or not, that person is generally able to read, peruse, and commit to memory every ugly subject and predicate. Additionally, the verbal abuse flung from a car window is momentary, passing, and passes by as the car and the moment. That stuff on the webpage or text screen can be preserved for evah!

Now, for those of us healthy enough to realize that people flinging nasty at each other behind the mask of technology really should not make lasting impact on our self-esteem or psyches, it is possible to ignore…unfollow… block… and move on. But the old thing about sticks and stones isn’t entirely true. Our bodies tend to heal a good deal more quickly than our egos when words scar and threats scare. Lives have been ruined over what seems to be silly online commentary. Freedom of speech (or typing) is not freedom from consequences.

Personally, I do not think that censorship is the answer. I think common sense (which is not so very common) is a better solution. If you wouldn’t say it where someone could actually face or possibly reach you, then don’t say it. If you don’t want it recorded for posterity and possibly flung back in your face like a monkey defending territory, don’t put it on the internet. Seems pretty simple to me; which means that it will be ignored the whole way ‘round, my best guess. So, back to the end of that conversation at the beginning… it pretty much dissolved into the much more important topic of a team name. What do y’all think? Should we be the Slaughter Monkeys or Rioting Llamas? Decisions… decisions…

Random hair incidents…

I woke up this morning and looked like a crested crane. That is truly the only way to describe it. It didn’t have the fauxhawk majesty of a cockatoo, and yet it appeared to fan out around my head like I had inadvertently attempted to plug flatware into the nearest available power outlet. Whoever came up with the trend of “bedhead” has obviously never encountered my own follicles or their delight in creating what I might call… um… a “fright wig” out of the stuff on the top of my head.

Oh, I hear what you all are saying. What does it matter first thing in the morning? It’s not like your coffee is going to judge you (you just don’t know, do you). However, when one is facing the chock-a-block calendar o’ fun and the early morning gym is the only option you have, having Phyllis Diller’s Homely Friendmaker hairdo is not helpful. See… I heard you again. What does it matter? You are going to the gym. Well, that is entirely accurate, and I’m not one of those perfectly-groomed-going-to-work-out sorts with their fashionably matched Lycra, makeup, and hair-ties. However, I don’t want to traumatize any of the other patrons or staff. I’m telling you, the hair is terrifying. My mirror screamed.

S’ok, you would think this is easily remedied. Stick your head under a faucet and wet the stuff down. Oh… no… for whatever reason, my hair defies all attempts to tame. Water, gel, mousse, pomades… my hair just laughs. I’ve seen industrial adhesive types of hairspray whimper and cower away from my hair. The only thing that will occasionally remedy the situation is a rather long shower and shampoo. This is not always the option first thing in the morning, nor is it something I want to do before the gym just so I can do it all over again after the sweating.

Regardless, I cannot imagine why anyone would actually choose to style their hair in this fashion. Yet, I see it all the time; products to make your hair look like you have “bedhead.” So, apparently there are actually people out there in the world that deliberately work to make their hair look like how it allegedly appears when they get out of bed. Baffling.

While we are on the hair subject, I’m going to probably push it a bit to far and discuss other hair. I will try not to get too graphic, but what is it about hair on the human body that wants to grow where it shouldn’t and not grow where it should. I listen to friends of both genders complain about thinning hair and degrees of receding hairlines that eventually decided to just retreat in a full-out rout looking more like a reverse Mohawk than any other description. While I have not had the experience of losing all my hair, I have had some of the thinning occur due to various issues… including age. I’ve never quite felt it was fair that as we get older, most of us thicken in body and thin in hair.

And yet… we still grow hair. For those of you out there who have reached that age of wandering hair, you know what I’m talking about. Ears, nostrils, eyebrows… They all start sprouting like someone hit them with Miracle Grow. Not that people should be ashamed of what seems to be a natural occurrence, but serious nostril spiders should definitely be tamed back a bit.

In my own case, it is the eyebrows. I can’t fathom why they decide to wander. I’ll have them all groomed and in place with the appropriate curve and balance and, for me, just a hint of snarky arch. Then… BOOM! There it is… that little hair that seems to have gotten lost entirely from the group and is now trying its best to be an eyelash. Seriously?!? Where are you going little one? Get the hell back up there where you belong! No? Fine. I’m sorry for your shortened life. 

Now, I’ve told you that I was not going to delve into the overly graphic. I won’t, but just a brief word about the -scaping thing. Whether it is man or woman, keep it neat. It is my personal opinion that hair down there is appropriate and more importantly a secondary sexual characteristic of an adult. In other words, I think it is a little creepy to shave it bare. To each their own, but I just don’t think we should groom to look like pre-pubescents.

That being said, though, take a moment to groom. If the jungle is taking over and presenting to the world outside your bathing costume, it’s time for a trim. As for our guys out there… (again, sorry for dipping into the graphic) if your partner needs a machete and a native guide to find the twig and berries, it might be time to prune the shrubbery.

Ok, whew! I’m glad we’ve dealt with that. Back to safer subjects. Let’s talk extremities and the pits. Yeah. So, I know it is very un-liberated of me, but I’m not an au naturel gal myself. Again, to each their own, but I just really do not think that the arm pits are places to grow luxuriant locks. It’s a hygiene thing for me. Again, call me old fashioned or societally submissive, but an attractive woman in a fashionable sleeveless ensemble raising an arm to reveal BUSH!!!!! is not attractive. If you feel that is discriminating, fine… it’s distracting as hell! It disturbs the line of the attire. There. Also, the gorilla look is a little bit overwhelming as well. Now, to firmly put me in double standard mode, I don’t like the whole bare body thing on dudes. The guys who wax everything and are baby smooth all over… not a turn-on. I think it goes back to a couple of paragraphs ago for me. I like guys who have passed puberty. So, I’m ok with those secondary sex characteristics, like chest hair, hairy legs and arms, and the facial fuzz… within certain limits. For instance, I don’t want to sleep with Chewbacca. I don’t need a pelted guy, and back hair is just a little bit off-putting. It’s cool, though. They make procedures for that, and I think it’s only fair that occasionally guys have to experience a little of the discomfort we girls have been putting up with for years in the name of beauty.

And speaking of the facial displays, beards have come into fashion. I’m not sure what precisely influenced this, except the entertainment industry managing to put male leads in various versions of manly facial fuzz. As a young woman, I really never liked the facial hair on men. I liked clean-shaven, smooth faces. However, as I’ve gotten older, my tastes have changed. Now, I see a clean-shaven face, and all I can think is “Is he 12?!?” Nothing wrong with the clean face, but I have become more accustomed to men with mustache and beard. That said, Grizzly Adams or any of the Duck Dynasty crowd need not apply either. There is such a thing as too much beard.

Well… that about covers all I felt the need to say about the follicle struggles and wayward coifs. May your hairs be ever in place and may no random incidents ruffle your day.


The Girl Scouts are coming… The Girl Scouts are coming…


It seems that every time I turn around, I see emails, messages, social media, and broadcasts of impending doom. I’m talking about Girl Scout Cookie season.

While this may seem like an overly dramatic description of the phenomenon, for someone who is trying their best to maintain a healthy lifestyle and make good, healthy food choices it is the proverbial quicksand… that slide into the dreadful abyss that finds me hiding in a dark corner surrounded by crumbs whispering “My precious…” to an empty box. It can be quite devastating. For all that I have will of steel most of the time, these tiny malicious purveyors of sugary sin cut through like kryptonite knife applied to Superman. It’s horrible, that I can be reduced to such weakness by the mere sight of a Trefoil.

Oh the humanity!

As a friend describes the struggle, “It’s when I find myself in emotionally fragile moments actively seeking out Girl Scouts…” Yes… it can be like that. More frequently, though, I find that I can’t escape the young green-clad forces. If I have fair warning, I tend to become a hermit, steering clear of grocery stores, hiding inside my house, and putting my head between my knees until it passes. Sometimes, you just can’t hide. Occasionally the little blighters will get a jumpstart before I’ve had fair warning.

I found that the Girl Scout official site has a little script running that allows you to put in your zip code to see when the cookie season starts in your vicinity. They even have an app for that, like a tiny little locator tool on your phone for finding those little food-crack distributors. The problem is that living in certain areas, when one troop ends their season, another begins. It is a constant barrage of the sugar, fat, and flavors.

I’ve had so many kind friends try to help me. They say, “Buy them and stick them in the freezer…” Ok, and then what, send the freezer to a foreign country, because honestly I still know where my freezer is and it is not safe from my vampire-like blood-lust for the cookies (perhaps the ingredients in these morsels are not so wholesome as we thought, but more about that later). Sure, those boxes will keep fresh in the cool environment… they will also be easily retrieved in the middle of the night while I devour a whole box of Tagalongs. “Oh,” they say with great sagely nodding, “but you can just limit yourself to a couple of cookies and put the rest away. Portion them out.” Bwahahahahahaha!!! They say it with a straight face, too. I’ve had this same discussion with myself for quite a number of decades now, and I will tell you that if I eat a Thin Mint (any of you ever try to eat just ONE Thin Mint?!?)… I will eat a whole sleeve, if not the entire box. I mean, really. They cannot mean for you not to do so. The cellophane wrapped around those little crisp minty-chocolate wonders meant to keep out air and moisture and maintain freshness… has all the resealability (I totally made that word up) of a Kleenex. It practically dissolves when I look at it, and to my knowledge, I have not yet developed laser eyes. It’s not like you can put them back.

When I was finally diagnosed with intolerance for wheat, I thought that I might be safe. Seriously, the glutard in me was going to be my savior from the cookies. But nooooooo. They came up with gluten free offering (Toffee-tastic, who comes up with these names?!?) that won’t hurt my delicate digestive system… while utterly destroying my willpower and mangling my dietary choices.

So, I’ve never had a particularly demanding sweet tooth. I never begged for candy or cookies or sweets of any kind as a child. BUT… Girl Scout cookies are different. I cannot resist the pull. If they are out of site, they are out of mind, but as soon as I hear the siren call of “My daughter is selling Girl Scout cookies…” I can’t help myself. I am a ravening beast. I must have the cookies. I turn into a…a… dare I say it… a Cookie Monster. It’s crazy. So, I started thinking to myself. Self, says I… what is it about the Girl Scout cookies. Is there some secret ingredient, addictive chemical that makes me putty in the green-clad hands?


So… that prompted a considering discussion. Perhaps, as Wednesday Addams says they are made with real, authentic Girl Scouts. Packed with vitamins and protein? Would that be organic, or would that entirely depend upon the diet of the contributing scout? How can we make sure that we are getting the best quality? Could there be a merit award system (their badges) that might lead to failure to meet their sales quota and so those failing to meet must contribute in other ways? Would that make the quality of the cookie better or worse? In my head, suddenly was imagined the most horrid and twisted version that has ever been considered by the Bros. Grimm. I could hear the discussion among my most deviant chums. “Can I get the nutritional information on these Do-si-dos? I do not think the Girl Scout contributing was fed organic produce.” All in all, I suppose I should be somewhat distressed by my ghoulish turn of mind. I could imagine tracking and hunting of Girl Scouts could take on a whole new meaning.

All that being said… the truth is, those small green bedecked creatures with their collections of colorful badges displayed on the sashes across their chests still cause me to avoid eye contact and scurry past the tables laden with boxes for fear that I will ultimately lose control and find myself weary, sated, glutinous heap, and incarcerated from eating 24 boxes of Samoas and blocking the entrance to the Kroger… surrounded by the judgmental stares of the vicious little sales women, their troop leaders, and disgusted passersby.

Last night, as I had one of the aforementioned emotionally fragile, nay… unstable moments that led to a horrible (and thankfully rare) instance of vaguebooking on my part, I considered to myself that there may be cookies out there, and used the application on their website only to find that the season has started and there are no table events planned. Salvation, because I’m pretty sure I would have devoured multiple boxes and depleted my bank account to try the new additions to the lineup that I’ve never tried (and would be disastrous for my digestive system): Cranberry Citrus Crisps, Lemonades, Savannah Smiles, Thanks-a-lot, and Trios… I’ll be honest. They can keep the Rah-Rah Raisins. Ew. Since none of the species were in evidence, I was saved from sugar-gluten-chocolaty shame and self-loathing (more so than I was already feeling). It’s a cookie season miracle! God bless us every one! Sorry, that slipped out.

Well… that about does it. I’ve poured out my heart concerning the trials and tribulations of the strange craving caused by those devious boxes of confection. Gird your loins and prepare to do battle with your hunger pangs… you will start to see them soon. You have been warned.

Girl Scout Cookies and where to find them – http://www.girlscouts.org/en/cookies/all-about-cookies/Meet-the-Cookies.html

This crazy fact about Girl Scout cookies is shocking fans everywhere – http://news.yahoo.com/crazy-fact-girl-scout-cookies-185332762.html

Artificial Unintelligence or the Day Siri Tried to Get Me Fired

So, there are entire site dedicated to the devil that is autocorrect. We have all seen and probably laughed heartily at the Freudian slips that our various communication devices seem to enjoy using to our abject horror. There are times when I am amazed and baffled at the hash that the circuitry seems to make of my simple exchanges. For example, who on earth would have gotten “Quetzalcoatl” from “mayonnaise”? For that matter, what the hell was the Aztec deity of wisdom and life doing in my phone in the first place?!? Points to ponder, that… Anyhow, as I was saying we all know that autocorrect is the bane of any neutrally classified conversation and the algorhythms thereof appear to have been deliberately programmed by a pubescent brain with a naughty streak that makes sexual innuendos from Captain Jack Harkness look like Sesame Street (extra points for those who got the reference). However, I believe that the voice activated artificial intelligence that have given personality to our smart phones may have exceeded even that threshold.

Though many of my brethren and sisters out there may have gone with other operating systems and their own flavors of artificial assistance, I have adhered to the evil fruity empire and that particular nemesis of my own… Siri. Please excuse my language, but Siri is an unmitigated bitch and works actively to make my life a more difficult place to live.

What could you possibly mean, Tananda? Siri does not have emotions or sentient thought. She is but a mere collection of programming and circuitry with only dichotomy decision making and search routines.

That’s just what she wants you to think!

Most people have the experience with Siri and other forms of electronic assistants of misunderstood speech and less than helpful answers. There was a whole range of commercials that made fun of GPS map systems with “RECALCULATING” as a regular punchline. Again, they are probably an easy target for humor since they have relatively simple interface and regardless of the progress one might perceive towards science-fiction-like computers and robotics, these devices are still in grammar school by comparison. It isn’t a negative observation, it is just realistic judgment of the initial stages of true human-to-machine interaction. To be completely honest, I’m not sure I want these things to get too clever. I’ve seen the movies, I don’t want to be controlled by our mechanical overlords, thanks.

Siri has, to this date, gotten me lost in some very unsavory situations and locations. She has a determined lack of desire to allow me to contact my mother by calling or texting. Instead she prefers to attempt to send the messages meant for my mother, my husband, or friends to business contacts and superiors who might not really appreciate being told that I love them or asking about various locations for planned debauchery. More than once I have attempted to ask the cow to “Call mom” or “Text Ted” to have her say, “What would you like to say to Doug Rodgers?” Seriously… or should that be Siriously?!? How on earth did she get that name from “mom” or “Ted”? It can lead to what I might like to call… “complications.” I’ve been brought to the brink of violence towards this disembodied entity that resides in my phone. More than once I have been diminished to the point of cursing at her with a string of profanity that rivals George Carlin’s Seven-Words-You-Can’t-Say-On-Television. To which Siri (proving that she is passive aggressive and has a seriously sadistic bent) replied “Okie Dokie, artichoke” at one time and “I was merely trying to help” at another. See what I mean?!? She’s evil. However, nothing quite compares to the day Siri tried to get me fired.

That is what I said. You read it correctly. It is my sincerest belief that while Siri is supposed to be without true sentience or personality, she secretly has “woken up” and become my archenemy and wants me to die a horrible death… or at very least be fired and forced to live in ignominy and humiliation for the rest of my days. So, for the record, I’m putting it on paper… well, not paper, but electronic version thereof… you know what I mean! I want witnesses dammit!!!

For those of you who do not know, I am actually a manager of a team of outreach specialists in the field of healthcare. I have quite a number of them who work for me, but in the infancy of the program, I had but three. Bless them, they worked hard and put up with all my stumbling attempts to define what our program would become. It was a struggle, but we made it… and I digress. As it happens, one of my first employees was male. He came to our employment relationship well recommended with a good many years of experience already under his belt. We’ve since that time gotten to know each other pretty well, but starting out, things were the stiff and professional interactions you might recognize. Everything was still very new and personalities were still figuring themselves out a tad. I primarily was trying to do my best to give an impression of professionalism to inspire confidence in the people working for me.

So, as the business day came to a close one evening, I was heading across town in my jeep. Like a good many people in the workforce today who need to communicate quickly in a variety of circumstances, my crew uses texting. Before any of the HIPAA-aware folks out there start freaking out, no protected health information flows through these lines. It is primarily a way of addressing generic information and safety considerations. Things like, “I’m leaving” or “I’ve arrived” to indicated things that the police have lovely codes for like 10-8 or 10-77.

On this particular day, we had been struggling with a case and trying to access resources in a very short timeframe. My staff member texted me as I was driving to say something along the lines of being unable to fulfill all the requests that were made of us that day.

Now, I’m not one of those who will text and drive. I’ve always seen it as dangerous, and given my propensity for clumsiness and lack of coordination, it would just be idiotic not to mention being illegal in most states these days. However, I do have Siri to assist me with these things. She asked, “Do you wish to respond?” I answered in the affirmative, and Siri said “What would you like to say to….?” So, I responded by speaking into the air, “That’s ok. We will just have to deal with the rest tomorrow.” Now, for those of you familiar with the interface in question, you know that she repeats the message back. For those unfamiliar, the next horrifying response from Siri was, “Your message to … says ‘Ok. I guess I’ll show you my breasts tomorrow.’ Do you wish to send?”

As you might imagine, for all my safety precautions using hands-free options and avoiding texting while driving, I nearly capsized my poor vehicle attempting to prevent that missive from sending along the airwaves. Imagine if you will, me trying to capture from the air the words as in slow motion the word “Noooooooooooo” flies out of my mouth. I could see the nightmare before me during my exit interview in human resources, “So, Dr. Haren, can you please help us understand how you thought it appropriate to sexually harass your employee by threatening him with your breasts?” Oh yeah, that would have been a hoot! Now, looking back, it makes for an enormously humorous situation that we can all get a chuckle from, but I can still almost capture that moment of panic when I thought Siri would likely send the message anyway.

As it stands, I’m still employed and not under any investigations for inappropriate conduct. I have foiled the little electronic @#$% so far. May I continue to be vigilant!

Do you even… bruh? A naturalist’s study of Ductusscchetto vulgaris: The common douchebag

I speak now of the common white-sunglasses-wearing variety of human… they smell of vinegar and water. We’ve all encountered them. They exist in many different regional habitats, and sometimes they even migrate. They are hip. They are chic. They are “too cool for school.” They are full of swagger and superiority… so much so, in fact, that they feel compelled to inflict their superiority upon the rest of the world, whether we like it or not. They are the kings (and queens) of the must-have trends, and they have mastered the art of the selfie. We know this, (why?) because they take about a blue-billion of the things every day and share them with the world and all their dearest friends and followers on social media that they have never met in the flesh.

Size & Shape

Though mannerisms and verbiage would incline one to believe that this species is of a large and imposing stature, it is not always the case. While having some very specific and discrete characteristics that identify the species, there is a vast range of size and shape associated with the Ductusscchetto vulgaris. The size of the species is often inversely proportional to the extremes of behavior. However, this is not universal and there have been instances of larger examples of the species behaving quite outlandishly.

Color Pattern

As with size and shape, D. vulgaris presents in any number of natural skin tones (some of which were obtained in a no where close to natural manner). However, this particular species does ornament themselves with external accessories and does provide a great variety of presentation interesting to the observer. Often, these ornamentations appear to give the individual some sort of connection or status within the social grouping they have chosen. While not always what might be considered flattering, they are generally always very trendy. As noted, they seem to be drawn especially to white-framed sunglasses (especially of a highly priced nature) and hats with flatten brims that do not fit well (as evidenced by the fact that they will not stay straight on the head).


As noted in the physical characteristic description, D. vulgaris comes in many shapes and sizes, but the universally recognizable characteristics are in the behavior. Frequently imposing, though not in stature alone, D. vulgaris inserts himself (or herself, not to be gender biased) into most circumstances without invitation or welcome. Most actions are calculated to garner the greatest amount of attention possible. Negative or positive bears no weight. All attention is good attention. D. vulgaris uses vocalization, physical presence, proximity, and occasionally motor conveyance to make sure that they achieve the goal of notice. Loud and raucous conversation, usually about perceived superiority in various activities is used in posturing ritual to establish dominance. Verbalizations are rife with buzzwords and colloquialisms with which they seem only to have a passing acquaintance with definition and actual syntax. Often, there are mating displays with various forms of physical and verbal proposition and proximity violations that can be compared to the physical posturing of the mountain gorilla or various unguent species such as deer, elk, and moose. D. vulgaris frequently appears to have perceptual deficiencies or maladaptation that prevents them from understanding hints or subtle indications from targeted individuals that they are not receptive to their advances.

Additionally, D. vulgaris makes attempts to eliminate competition and secure territory by making the area around them completely intolerable. Additionally, certain members of the species feel the need to be voluble in a non-verbal way. This includes grunts, growls, and incomprehensible vocalizations (much like those of other simian species) during tasks requiring physical expenditure, fitness activities, and reaction to members of their sexually targeted population. Additionally, these individuals utilize tools such as motor vehicles to stimulate the auditory senses and draw attention. This includes revving engines as well as the addition of accessories to their form of conveyance that produces vibrations to imitate the sounds of bumble bees in a coffee can. (We can only assume that this somehow stimulates the species sexual drives or possibly is a way to flush out their food source, it is a mystery and serves no apparent purpose for the motor conveyance.)


The behavior attributed to mating habits has already been addressed for the most part, but additionally, it might be noted that the male of the species appears to use the least eloquent verbiage in their attempts to woo the targeted individual. Frequently, “How you doin’?” is an opening gambit. However, these attempts seem to change with other sociological and entertainment media influence. The female of the species can be identified by the call, “I’m so drunk!”


Much as other invasive species have taken over territory and nearly eradicated the native indigenous specimens, D. vulgaris has invaded most habitats and can be found in a wide variety of geological and sociological environs. However, they can be found in greater numbers in establishments where there are “SHOTS SHOTS SHOTS” or a vast supply of the beverages made of barley and hops. It is possible that they congregate in these settings due to some biological drive and migration pattern, or it may be a phenomenon like that of watering holes in the savannah. D. vulgaris also can be found in temples dedicated to the physical fitness. While the native species tend to focus on the benefits of movement and activity for health reasons, D. vulgaris generally attends this type of worship more for the benefit of attention seeking and ornamental posturing with the overly loud vocalizations to emphasize their prowess. This has often deteriorated into territorial disputes resulting in indigenous species attrition in many of these haunts.


While not much is known about the universal diet of D.vulgaris, the individuals of the species are more than willing to dominate conversations and social gatherings with trendy dietary choices that are guaranteed to change their physical composition, regale terrified groups of people with intestinal woes related to various intolerances, or brag of the copious nature of their appetite and carnivorous habits. Generally, it can be said that if there is a particular type of food that is unpalatable or sickening to the audience in question, that will be discussed at length without any particular perception of negativity on the part of listeners. On occasion, D. vulgaris will take food from other species uninvited, especially if it inserts them to the notice of the group in question.

Similar Species

Ductusscchetto vulgaris or the common douchebag is similar to the jerk, misogynist, egoist, narcissist, bore, braggart, musclehead, skanks, mean girl, and egomaniac. There are subtle differences as well as gender specificity for some categories. The population sadly appears to be growing and terribly invasive, as stated earlier. Measures need to be implemented to control the population growth and promote conservation of more useful organisms.

Confessions of an insomniac: perfect bacon bowl, magic bullets, ninja juicers, and that thing that shocks your abs

Insomnia is an ugly and unpredictable foe. It also is a somewhat recent addition to my life, recent meaning only in the last 15 years or so.

At one point in the not terribly distant past, I prided myself on the ability to sleep in any situation, a handy talent when my job consisted of long hours on call and being paged to the emergency department all all hours. Back in those good ol’ days, I could grab a 5 minute nap in the doctors’ lounge, put my head down briefly on a desk waiting for lab results or callback from insurance, and I could exist quite well or that maladaptive sporadic sleep until I had the opportunity to sleep in an actual bed.

Something happened to me, though. At some point my body rebelled and now, regardless of exhaustion, surroundings, comfort, or sleep hygiene, I lay with eyes wide open, unable to achieve entrance to the land of Nod. My mind refuses to shut down. My brain’s off switch declining to respond to my requests, replays events, catalogues tasks unaccomplished, ruminates and catastrophizes over potential disasters… And I do not sleep.

Often I will drift off only to find myself wide awake, heart racing with a plethora of anxieties in the wee hours. Trusting to my body’s exhaustion to send me back to dreamland is a really bad joke. So there I lay victim to my own racing thoughts.

What I have found to be helpful on occasion is the television. Documentaries or shows that can distract my brain, but not engage enough interest to keep me from drifting back into sleep.
However, what is the bane of my efforts is the prevalence of infomercials that become omnipresent starting at around 4:00 A.M. Sadly I usually see them even if I’m lucky enough to drift back off, because they are at an elevated volume and are way too excited and dramatic in their speech patterns to fade into “white noise”.

I have discovered that the marketing gurus who came up with the evils of infomercials knew exactly what they were doing. Attack people at their most vulnerable times psychologically! The human brain is a curious thing. The ploys and selling strategies that are completely resistible during the light of day have the power of a hypnotist in the wee hours. The worthless and completely useless dust-collecting doo-dads that are laughable in the light of day gain the value and irresistible aspects of breathing by the glow of the television in a darkened room to sleep-deprived eyes.

You think I’m kidding, but I promise you that I am very far from being an impulse buyer. Typically, I am a person who will see something that appeals to me, have to think about it for a considerable amount of time, put it away on a wish list or back burner, wander around for weeks or months to see if I still want it, and then typically decide I can live without it. Believe me! Loved ones have literally had to give me gift cards that will expire to go get myself new wardrobe items because my clothing started to resemble hobo-chic or something from a retro store … and not in a good way. So, needless to say, I’m not one that might generally be supposed to be in danger of the wiles of the late night/early morning infomercial.


Yes… I found myself listening to the joy and happiness of people eating out of the “perfect bacon bowl” while designing their new fitness program by individualized plan guaranteed to result in phenomenal weight loss in less than a month! I felt compelled to call the people who exclaimed over their silken, tangle-free hair that had all the shine and brilliance without stripping it of the natural oils that keep it healthy. I was astounded and amazed that I had lived so long without the thing that shocks your abs (and other muscle groups), firming and tightening without so much as a droplet of sweat expelled.

As silly and ridiculous as it sounds, all of the products took on a glow and produced a desire in me that I never could have predicted. I felt my hand twitch and reach for the phone on the bedside table. I wanted to immediately rush to the nearest computer to access the website for quick-ordering… because if I ACT NOW, I CAN GET THREE… THAT’S THREE FOR THE PRICE OF ONE!!!

It was all I could do to resist the pull of those words. It was like my life depended on the acquisition of this item that would only be available for the NEXT TEN MINUTES!!!

Thankfully, the cat demon that likes to sleep in such a way that I am prevented from moving during the night was roused by my physical reaction to the brainwashing attempts from the screen. He wasn’t terribly pleased by all of this and expressed his dissatisfaction by biting my toe. This was enough to awaken me to the sense of what was happening, and I reached not for the phone, but for the remote and silenced the sales patter with one press of the power button.

Thank goodness cats are immune to the perils of late night infomercials or I would be the proud owner of the Shakeweight, Magic Bullet, Flex Belt, Ninja Juicer, or ThighMaster!

Rant: Society’s Humor Deficiency and Terminal Self-Importance

First of all, I want to preface this by saying, this is not directed towards any one individual, and while I am going to address one particularly silly situation (silly, in my opinion), I do not necessarily fail to recognize the feelings and seriousness of actual social inequity or genuine concerns for the public health. This, however, is a rant. Pure and simple. Well, probably not so simple since my brain likes to take side roads and get lost in the woods, but you get the drift. And with that said… on with the show.

At what point in time did everyone in America become so thin-skinned that every blessed thing that is said, done, or even hinted is going to cause offense?!? When did the melting pot of the world become so polarized in thoughts, ideas, and beliefs that casual communication is a constant risk of litigation?!?

I have pondered and written before about hyperbolic opinions and lack of moderation, but things seem to have gotten way out of hand. It seems like every day I hear of something else that has a group of people vaguely bonded by some single common interest getting their knickers in a wad over something that has been said on the television, radio, internet, social media, etc., and said group decides to stage a protest, start a petition, or even go so far as to file a legal complaint. Seriously? Most recently, I have heard yet another completely ridiculous social outrage battle, spawned and nurtured by social media (and other forms of media just to boost ratings, I’m sure). I’m perplexed as to why we are still giving energy and air time to the nonsense that seems to be predominantly fomented by people who are just looking for something to be upset about anyway. I shall use this most recent (to my notice) issue as the example because I am myself one of the people who would be in the group who would find the incident offensive… at least if I felt like it was worthy of my time to get offended.

So, it seems that someone, possibly in an attempt at humor, has once again made some vague mention of gluten. People were so offended by this that they have petitioned to pull commercials from the Super Bowl. This follows the trending topic of Celiac and gluten sensitivity being a figment of the imagination according to some. I’m not going to argue about this one way or another. I will only say that this is something I have been hearing and reading from various people and a whole bunch on social media. It turns out, I am one of those fantastic (as in fantasy) beings who suffers from a gastrointestinal intolerance to gluten, specifically of the wheat variety (there are other types, you know). I’ve heard the arguments. I’ve heard people say, “It is all in your imagination.” I have read an article written by an MD (who turned out to profit by genetically modified food products) who proclaimed that there was no scientific evidence for gluten sensitivity.

And… my reaction? I DON’T CARE! Seriously. I’m not sure why me, my eating habits, my colon, and other digestive organs are any business of the people who seem to be completely offended by my choice to avoid gluten. So, why do they care? ‘Tis a puzzlement; a quandary for the ages. Why do people give two rips whether I or anyone else eats gluten? Why should they care whether there is a gluten free option on a menu or in the supermarket or that said quality is labeled on those particular foods? Sounds like a personal problem to me, and I find it somewhat amusing that my digestive health is of such concern to the people that don’t have to put up with it. I know how my body responds. I know how it has responded for literally years before I removed said protein (yes, gluten is a protein) from my diet. I know how much better I feel now. It is entirely worth the small sacrifice of wheat products from my life. As for science, there is actual genetic testing to support Celiac, so… not sure how or why anyone would debate that one.

The point being, what anyone says or doesn’t say about the legitimacy and truth of my gluten sensitivity doesn’t have any impact whatsoever on whether I choose to eat it or avoid it, and it certainly does not offend me if they choose to believe that my gastrointestinal response to wheat gluten is all in my head. I doubt seriously that my choice of entrée that does not include whole wheat rolls or wheat flour pasta is going to have some sort of psychological impact on them. So, why should I allow their belief about “dietary delusions” impact my own food choices?

On the other side of the argument, however, are a lot of people who are offended by the statements and have taken up the banner in protest of people who choose to believe gluten sensitivity doesn’t exist. Why would you care what they think?!? People! Eat the way that is healthy for you. Their opinions, no matter how loudly or frequently expressed are not going to change your body’s response. Unless that someone is physically forcing whole wheat bread down your gullet, their opinion is not going to harm you. (And honestly, if someone does that sort of thing, their opinions are the least of their issues. That is a pathological somebody to force feed something to a person who could legitimately have an allergy to it. )

I guess what I am getting at is, practice a little planned ignoring people! If you don’t like the fact that my body responds very badly to ingesting wheat products, don’t eat a meal with me (though, chances are you might not even notice anything amiss if you did). If you are one of the people who suffers from intolerance to gluten or worse, Celiac, take the precautions and stay healthy. For Celiac disease sufferers, exposure is a very serious risk that can literally be deadly (bleeding internally is a potential consequence). Otherwise, lighten up everyone! Stop assuming that flippant comments about any given topic are a personal attack on you. Half the time people say over-the-top things just to get an over-the-top reaction and boost their exposure by controversy. Better yet, learn to laugh at yourselves, because point of fact, not everything is about YOU! Here endeth the rant.

Physical Fit: Oh! There IS a reason for that thingy…


So, my workout journey continues. I’ve experienced my various slips and backslides and general lack of motivation, but on the whole, things have gone pretty well.

I have spoken previously about necessary equipment for the ritual of working out. For the most part, I would say that you can get away with very little in the way of purchases when starting down the road to a more active lifestyle. Provided you have appropriate footwear to provide support (though obviously footwear is not necessary for all forms of exercise), workout apparel that is comfortable (unless of course you belong to a nudist organization and are content with the effects of gravity upon pendulous parts), and… well, honestly that pretty much covers it. You really need nothing else. It is entirely possible to have physical activity for the purpose of health and well-being without a lot of props.

That said, most people have some form of headphones with appropriate technology to provide background noise of some kind. I am lucky enough to belong to a gym that provides television screens and headphone jacks so that I need not even have my own device. I usually do, though. I’m as attached to my phone as anyone else… and so begins my tale of woe. Well, maybe not so much woe as oh my did anyone see that?!?

Anyone who has jumped on the physical fitness wagon will find themselves bombarded by a variety of “must haves” and “needs” from athletic merchandizers. There are health monitors, gadgets, breathing apparatuses, self-filtering water bottles, attachments for measuring all manner of vital statistics, and of course the clothing and shoe fashions. It is a constant pull of the commercial industries to get your money, and I personally was taking a firm stance to not give into this flagrant display of capitalistic whoredom. I am made of stauncher stuff. I would not be moved (just don’t advertise the stuff on late night television because my will is weak in the wee hours).

One of the silliest devices, in my opinion, was these little holster-like objects that fasten around one’s arm or other appendage and would hold sound production devices or mobile phone. They are frequently made of some neoprene like substance that reminded me, for all the world, of my SCUBA wetsuit. While I didn’t completely dismiss them out of hand, I mostly considered them a vanity for the high fashion conscious workout set. You know the type, the ones with matching outfits made of coordinated spandex and triple digit footwear. I was most decidedly not one of those people, and so, I saw no need to invest in the cute little arm/phone belt that comes in a variety of colors. In fact, I strongly suspected that a lot of people wore them for the sole purpose of showing off their biceps. This was clearly a douch-nozzle or spandex nazi object unworthy of my serious pursuit of better health. I could do very well with my handy phone holster that attaches to my waistband. I certainly did not need to spend my hard-earned wages to be fashionably equipped with my phone holder.

Miscalculation number one: Phones these days, though technology is getting more miniature and compact, are heavy. They respond to gravity much like little talkative paperweights.

Miscalculation number two: Not all workout pants, shorts, or leggings come equipped with drawstrings.

Miscalculation number three: Cardiovascular activity generally involves some bouncing and jarring of the body and all attached items.

And my fourth and final miscalculation: Pants stretch.

You are probably already getting the idea. I think I heard a few snickers back there in the back. One bright and sunny day in the not very distant past, I betook myself to ye ol’ proving grounds for my daily workout. That day, I happened to be sporting one of my purchases that you may recall from an earlier article. This particular pair of leggings was of the cropped variety and was without the drawstring option. They fit well enough when I changed into them. Sadly, the sadists who designed said apparel also decided that a firm elastic waistband was also unnecessary. I believe that this garment was meant to be held up by hopes and magic. Nevertheless, I had attached my trusty holster, put in my earbuds, and mounted my favorite elliptical machine.

I started at a good pace and set the timer for a nice cardio session. About halfway into my run on the elliptical, I noticed that something was happening at around waist level… or rather what should have been waist level and was now slowly creeping towards my groin area.

Now, for those unfamiliar with the equipment known as an elliptical machine, I will tell you that it is a marvelous device for those of us with fragile knees. However, it is also designed to require some attention to technique and has the potential of mayhem if not attending to the poetry of motion associated with the ski-pole like handle movement and pedal like running steps. In other words, taking my hands off to adjust my waistband against the forces of gravity was some high risk behavior. Needs must when the devil drives, and so, I quickly removed one hand from the grips to jerk my waistband back up to its appropriate location and continued in my progress.

I listen to books when I run typically. I must have gotten to an absolutely riveting portion of the narrative because the next sensation to draw my attention was the feeling that my backside was receiving a good deal more breeze than is normal for my appropriate clad posterior, and to my horror I found that I had, in fact, been pants’d by my phone. Yes, ladies and gentleman, the moon (well at least my chunnies) was shining for all the world to see… or at least the poor souls that occupied the elliptical and treadmill rows behind me. Oh the humanity!

And that is how I came to own my very own arm holster… I think it shows off my bicep quite nicely, don’t you?