Sometimes you just need to have diarrhea.

Pull up your figurative Depends and follow me on this one.

There are times in life when the cautious, filtered approach to communication just doesn’t work.  It’s time for verbal diarrhea. You need to get mushy and stinky and roll around in the crap in order to move forward. (For those with a visual imagination, I apologize.) These are the moments when you need to let the words fly out without warning, premeditation, or any thought at all.*

It’s not advice for every day, and certainly not for performance reviews at work (however tempting that may be when your “boss”, who may be at least 10 years your junior, is giving you advice on how to be a better you).  Regardless, it’s good advice for those moments when candor and truth are necessary at any cost.

Think about your last ugly cry.  You know the one – crazy eyes, snotty nose, sweaty forehead.  It was probably related to the romantic other in your life.  If I look like this after an encounter, it is guaranteed that stuff came out of my mouth that was at times completely incoherent, but brutally honest.

Let me put in a small aside here.  If this is the way ALL of your romantic fights look, then it may be time to stop reading this post and find some Imodium STAT.  For the rest of you, please continue.

It isn’t until I reach “hot mess” that I say what I really feel.  It doesn’t always end the way I want things to, but it always ends the way it should.  My verbal diarrhea comes shooting out, and sometimes they can hack it, other times they can’t.  Either way, we both have a better understanding of one another and can decide if another round is worth the effort.

Bouts of cleansing diarrhea are not only good for high intensity stand-offs.  They are equally beneficial when doling out advice, particularly in cases where the advice seeker is a repeat offender of frustratingly ridiculous behavior but still believes “I didn’t do anything wrong.”  A good friend, after 15 rounds, will just let it fly. Trust me, it feels so much better after.

I am discovering that the only situation that this proverbial diarrhea may actually be a welcome recurring affliction is when I write.  Blog post that took me less than 30 minutes to write, were riddled with grammatical nightmares, and included numerous incomplete sentences, were the only ones that got read.

I am at 29 minutes. Let’s see if the theory holds true.

*Yes, caught that in my brief editing review. Left it in for your pleasure.

Talking to Your Child About the BIG Stuff

Today I had the pleasure of being a guest blogger on Leah’s Thoughts, a blog written by a fellow mom, friend, and kindest mentor in this crazy world of blogging. Thanks for posting, Leah!

Leah's Thoughts

Today’s guest post is written by Leah Prehn from Blurb My Enthusiasm. Besides sharing names, Leah is a friend, blogger, and fellow preschool mom. Her posts are just the right mix of truthfulness and sarcasm. I can truly appreciate the post Leah wrote today, especially after Sophie’s recent questionsWelcome, Leah, to Leah’s Thoughts!

What happens when you die?

Really? You’re four????

This is an all too familiar situation many of us find ourselves in, made worse when the kid asking is not our own.  After the initial shock wears off, your mind races to all the stories you’ve ever been told about the BIG stuff.  Then the realization creeps in that you don’t believe any of those stories and the trap has been set. How to do a better job of explaining things than the generation before?

I have developed my own personal strategy that I think may…

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Finding out what’s really important.

It’s all about mice.

Did you know that mice poop while they walk?  It’s like breathing to them. They don’t have a special “place” to lay their dukes.  They don’t excuse themselves to another area.  No. They just walk, poop, breath, pee, procreate, poop, breath, pee.*

This phenomenon is only important when mice decide that your house is a pretty swell place to domicile. I have a really terrific house.  More specifically, I have a spectacular laundry room/random un-insulated addition to the back of my very small house.  (For more on my small house, click here.)

In this room are all the things that are important enough to keep, but not important enough to keep in any easily accessible space. It’s also the place where I go to get the spots out, the stains annihilated, and my clothes really clean.

Imagine my joy when I discovered the trail of scat leading from one edge of the room to the opposite corner.  OH ____ RAPTURE.  (Intentional blank, fill it in as you please.)

I spent that last 7 hours of my day donning a mask, yellow rubber gloves and a bottle of bleach.

Let me tell you something about mouse scat.  You CAN’T

–        Sweep it up

–        Vacuum it up

–        Disturb it any way


I won’t bore you with the details, just a final fact. ONE in THREE people that contract the virus will DIE.

As I bleached and scrubbed, holding my breath despite the mask, I had one of those moments of great discovery that only come when faced with a 30% chance of death.

I don’t need this stuff.

I have been holding on to stuff that I really don’t need.  This stuff has been binding me to the past, to other days that will never happen again.  Seriously, when am I ever going to play scrabble again on an actual board with PIECES? I have an app for that.  And iron?? I don’t iron.  I don’t even cook. Which is good, since the barbecue tools were pitched today too.  Along with the dog brush, wrapping paper, extra toilet paper, sunshade, chair covers, and the funky bowl that was a wedding present from some of my favorite people that was accidentally set on the shelf.

So, really, the mice were a blessing.  They allowed me to rid myself of the past, potential future, and the convenience of having items handy that are not required on a daily basis.  Because of their potentially deadly crap, I now have the cleanest, whitest, laundry/no longer storage for anything that I might ever want to use again room.

Thank you, mice, for your ________ visit.

Bon ______ Voyage.

*Not substantiated by any relevant source, but substantial evidence collected (by me) suggests this statement is true.

I think, therefore you’re awesome.

It’s simple, people are pretty awesome.

I was driving the other morning and passed a rather large woman jogging, and I thought, “You are awesome. You decided that you want to make a change.”

I was at the lunch with my kid and sat near a dad having a solo lunch with his two kids under 3, and I thought, “Wow, you’re an awesome dad.  Never mind the meltdown, you made your kids’ day.”

I was reading a really well written blog post, and I thought, “Seriously, you’re an awesome writer.  You captured a moment in time with such humor it makes me want to follow your next post.”

This entry just as easily could have been about the person who cut me off on the freeway, the dog owner that left the “present” in my yard, or the woman who scowled and complained about the meltdown mentioned above, but it’s not.

I am choosing to believe that the person who cut me off on the freeway was racing to the hospital to see a dying friend, the dog owner just forgot the bag and will pick up someone else’s crap as karmic payback, and the woman who scowled had a migraine and will feel horrible about her reaction later.

I am no Dalai Llama, particularly when I get too little sleep and the coffee has run out.  I can road rage, cut off, sneer and snarl with the best of them.  That subtle scratch of my nose while you pass is done with one finger.  And that casual one finger lingering on the steering wheel while you pass, yes that’s for you.

But today is Monday. The beginning of the week, the start of a new hell adventure, a chance to do it differently.

Here is my Monday pledge:

Today, I will not get annoyed when milk is spilled, jelly ends up under my feet from an errant piece of breakfast toast.  I will not stress about getting out the door on time, we will get there when we get there, and my hair WILL be brushed.

I will think your parents didn’t teach you manners when you cut me, and every other driver, off just to shave 2.5 minutes off your commute, but instead of hating you with unabashed rage, I will feel sorry for you. And you parents. And your ex (because clearly you are shunned, alone, and bitter.)

I will do my best to keep my subtle finger gestures out of my day, I think the kids are picking up on them anyway.

I will try really, really, really hard to remember that, in general, people are pretty awesome.

Happy Monday, All!

Keep it subtle.

Get your pink slime OUT!

It’s an outrage!! How dare schools serve a product full of byproducts and chemicals and call it healthy for our children.

“It consists of lean beef carcass trimmings, which have been separated from fat and treated with ammonium hydroxide to kill harmful bacteria such as E. coli O157 and salmonella, before being ground, compressed into blocks and quick-frozen.”

via Vitals – ‘Pink slime’ in your meat? Labels to tell you, USDA says.

What’s next?? Amonium hydroxide in:

  • Cheese on my kid’s pizza?
  • Vegetables served on the line?
  • Pudding dessert?
  • Chocolate milk?

What’s that you say? It’s already most likely there??? And it’s probably in the food I give at home???

Ultimately, I agree, it’s not great to have chemicals in our food.  I find it interesting, however, that schools have served every flavor of milk, french fries, and gelatin based desserts (horse hooves, people!), and there has been none of the outrage.  Personally, I never ate the “beef” at school. It was disgusting.  I drank way more flavored milk and soda, and snarfed french fries, leaving the patty on my plate.

I understand that part of the outrage is due to the fact that “pink slime” was not labeled as being anything other than beef.  Transparency would have helped this industry avoid this current spate of bad, no HORRID, press, but that lesson is now a hindsight 20/20 moment.

The industry of “pink slime” is pretty well decimated it seems, but I am guessing your school will serve a version of a chicken nugget next week that would make Colonel Sanders cringe, washed down with soda that cleans the acid off a battery, and finished with a huge glob of dessert that may or may not be entirely created from chemicals that you can’t pronounce.

Who are you again?

I am horrible at remembering names. If there were a competition, I would lose by calling the host Mike instead of Ryan Seacrest.

I avoid using names at any cost, even when I am fairly certain that I know it for sure.

Case in point: I was out front chatting with my neighbors when I attempted to introduce them.

“Dan, have you met Christian from across the street?”

“Matt, but nice to meet you Dan.”

“Oh my god, I’m sorry, your name is Matt.” (??? I could have sworn his name was Christian.  But wait – he is the kid that chose public school over a private Christian academy.  How did that information get so crossed??)

I have tried every trick in the book. Clever rhymes (Sarah, Sarah, dressed in… Farah?), repeating names immediately (Nice to meet you Farah – I mean Sarah!), and using their names at least 3 times in conversation (Farah, how did you keep that red bathing suit from rising up in the back?). Nothing works.

I recognize the signs of a name memorizer when I meet people, and I try to pop quiz them later. Just for fun.

I have finally come up with a foolproof strategy for greeting people who may, or may not be, someone I have met before.

I start with a large, wow-it’s-really-you, you-are-my-best-friend smile, followed by a cleverly extenuated, “Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii!”

I spend the next few minutes figuring out if I have, in fact, met you before, and if so, where from.

“How are things in your world?”

“What exciting things have you been up to?”

If I am lucky and actually recognize your face, and even where I know you from, I may find an excuse to get your email address since most people use some version of their name.  Although, I had one person reply, “Oh, it’s just my name @ gmail.” Assumptive little narcissist.

I just keep smiling and offering inane responses to your pointed questions, because clearly you have figured out that I don’t have a clue what your name is.  I would rather have you believe that I am idiot of vast proportions, than know for sure that I have no idea who you are.

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