Accept or Adapt; The Fizzy Water Argument

patriotismGodBlessAmerica

I hate fizzy water. You know, the kind with bubbles in it? Here’s an odd fact that you might not know. Germans love fizzy water. In fact, if you order a glass of water at a bar or restaurant in Germany, they will automatically give you fizzy water, unless you order ‘no gas.’

Yeah, I know it’s weird, but it’s true.

When I was in Berlin during the 1999 Love Parade, I woke up one morning with a massive hangover and a serious case of dry mouth. I went to a café nearby and ordered a huge bottle of water. Then, I took an equally huge gulp…

And promptly vomited fizzy water all over the floor.

I, of course, realized my mistake. In Germany, it’s part of the culture that fizzy water is their default water. I apologized to the waitress, paid for the fizzy water and ordered a bottle of flat. She was actually very nice about the whole thing.

I didn’t berate the waitress for not understanding that because I’m an American, she should have known I didn’t mean fizzy water. I didn’t demand that the café comp me the bottle of fizzy water and claim it was their fault I threw up. I didn’t do either of those things because the incident was MY fault.

It wasn’t the waitress’s job to adapt her standards to my culture. It was my job to adapt myself to German culture. After all, I was a guest in their country and in their country, fizzy water is just water.

This post isn’t about my dislike of fizzy water (though I do deeply hate it). Instead, the anecdote was kind of designed as a metaphor for the cultural ‘tolerance’ that is overtaking this country right now.

Tolerance for other cultures is somehow becoming intolerance of our own.   I see news story after news story about people being told to remove American flags from their properties because others might be offended. I see people who are against kids saying the Pledge of Allegiance because they think it disrespects the culture of their birth. I’ve even met people who think that the official language of the US should be Spanish because so many Spanish immigrants have moved here.

Here’s the deal, the land doesn’t adapt to you. You adapt to the land. Americans shouldn’t have to hide our heritage because people from foreign countries don’t like it. Not to sound like a redneck buffoon, but if they hate America so much, why the fuck do they live here?

Awhile back, my mom went to WalMart. While she was there, she bought a pork roast. When she got to the register, the woman behind it told my mom that she’d have to scan and bag her own groceries because she couldn’t touch pork.

To which I say, get bent. It wasn’t my mother’s job to ensure that her grocery cart fit the dietary restrictions of a minimum wage cashier’s religion. It was the damn cashier’s job to pick a job that didn’t contradict her religious beliefs.

The second your religious beliefs impinge on my freedom, you are in exact contradiction to one of the founding principles of this country. Your personal Jesus does not trump my freedom and if I feel like hanging bacon Christmas lights (patent pending) this year, that’s exactly what I’m going to do. I don’t give a fuck what your wacky god things.

Oh, and by the way? Yes, I think your god is wacky. As long as I’m not committing a crime, I am in no way required to respect your religion. Deal with it. I think being Muslim is weird. What are you going to do? Spank me or take away my birthday? (Just so you know, I’m kind of into spankings and I haven’t celebrated a birthday since I was 29.)

Oh, right, you can actually do NEITHER of those things… because it is my right as an American to express my opinion…using the English language.

Accept that fact that Americans aren’t a multilingual people. We speak English here. Yes, I am aware the rest of the world thinks we’re idiots for only speaking one language, but that’s the way it is. If you want to come as a guest, feel free to speak your own language. But if you want to live here, learn to speak English.

It’s called adapting to your surroundings. Try it; it will make life a shitload easier.

Our founding fathers fought for this country. They fought for freedom of religion and free speech. They fought for the right to speak English without having to spell color with a ‘U’ or call an apartment a flat.  Respect the damn culture or get the hell out.

Look, foreigners who come here expecting America to change just for you… it’s incredibly awesome that you’ve got the whole American arrogance and sense of entitlement down. But all the entitlement in the world isn’t going to make this country change. That’s another part of being an American you might dislike. You have freedom of speech, but there is a very strong likelihood that no one gives a fuck what you have to say.

America is a lot like that bottle of fizzy water I got on that hungover Sunday morning. It might not be exactly what you were expecting. Hell, it might even make you throw up. But you can’t change the fact that it’s fizzy water. You either need to learn to like fizzy water or you pay for your water and walk away before the waitress notices you just puked on the floor.

 

 


How You Really Know You’re a Hipster

Recently, I was accused of being a hipster because I was wearing an ironic T-shirt. As the majority of my clothes comes from garage sales, this is a frequent, but unintentional occurrence. Anyway, I am not a hipster. I’m just lazy and unkempt. But for those who are wondering if you are, here is a helpful listing to let you know if you’re a hipster.

 

You pay $85 for a haircut that makes you look homeless and $120 for pre-torn jeans.

How do I put this politely? Fuck Urban Outfitters. The only reason people shop in those stores is because other people shop at those stores. Be honest people. When was the last time you said, “hey, you know what? I want to pay $54 so I can wear an ugly, vintage inspired sweatshirt of a band that I don’t really listen to?”

suicidal tendencies

 

You want a modern day version of the Emperors New Clothes? Think Urban Outfitters. No joke, those fuckers are laughing at you.

You wear jeans that have to be zipped with pliers.

I hate the skinny jeans trend. As a curvy girl, I don’t really have the stature to pull them off. To get an idea of what I look like in skinny jeans, think ‘denim sausage wearing flesh colored inner tube’.

muffin-top

The last thing I need is some 24-year-old androgynous dude to look better in jeans than I do (and have smaller hip measurements). As a protest to the skinny jeans movement, I refuse to wear pants until it’s over.

Take that, America.

Regardless of how stupid your political opinion, you take a condescending view of everyone else’s.

To be political, you need to get your news from places other than the Daily Show and conspiracy blogs.  If you’re not political, just say you’re not political. I’m not political. When I write a political post, I just make up the statistics that sound right.  It’s surprisingly easy to trick people into believing you’re political if you use the right words. But hipsters are required to have a political opinion, even if they think that ‘Whigs’ and ‘Tories’ are still the major voting parties in this county.

Personally, I’m voting Tory next time around. “A Modest Proposal’ convinced me we needed major poorhouse reform in this country.

You think you’re counterculture, when you are the exact opposite.

People started rejecting society’s norms and turned rebellion into a lifestyle as early as the 1960s. As those people grew to adulthood, never getting married, recreational drug use and distrust in the government became the new norm. Old counterculture is the new norm. If you were really counterculture, you’d be a Christian republican who is against gay marriage and the legalization of marijuana. I’m sorry, but your world views are no longer edgy when your parents agree with them.

Look, I’m not a hipster. I’m not affecting an air of laziness and disdain. I’m actually just lazy and disdainful. I have been since I was four. I don’t leave my hair messy to convince you of how little I care. I just haven’t been able to get my brush in two weeks, because I dropped it under my bed, and deep down inside, I know there’s a monster underneath there.

My life isn’t a lifestyle. It’s what happens when a depressed alcoholic spends too much time in the sun. I’m not a hipster. I’m not hip or trendy. I’m simply mostly buzzed and mildly grumpy. My behavior isn’t a social statement.  It’s a cry for help.

Fuck hipsters.


Crazy Talk

In honor of the late, great Joan Rivers “can we talk?”

Specifically, can we talk about crazy talk? One thing that flabbergasts me is people who talk about how crazy they are, when they’re really not. I heard this one recently from a girl whose idea of crazy is watching Special Victims Unit with the subtitles on. She said to me, “we’re having a girl’s night, so I hope I don’t wind up in jail. You know how crazy I can be!”

The thing was, I didn’t. Then it occurred to me that this girl might think she’s crazy simply for wearing open-toed shoes in November. That’s because there is no litmus test for what constitutes crazy on a night out. It’s purely subjective…

Until now. Using many scientific methods, I have created a test that will tell you once and for all if you truly are crazy.

You will be given a question, then a series of three options. Your answers will determine your level of craziness.

1) You wake up in the morning after a night on the town. On the kitchen table, next to your car keys is a top hat, a radio station bumper sticker, and an extra large set of anal beads. Where did these items come from?

a) One of your drunk friends gave them to you. Why she had Mardi Gras beads in September, you’ll never know.

b) The memories are a bit hazy, but you believe you got them while bar hopping. The top hat you probably stole from a guy.

c) You have no fucking clue. The entire night is a black hole. Then, you turn on the radio and hear yourself giving a glowing endorsement of BJ’s Hardcore BDSM Club, using your full legal name. How you got the top hat remains a mystery, but you keep it because it might be magic.

2) There is a cute guy eyeing you at the club. You;

a) Wait for him to approach you

b) Approach him first

c) Approach him first and put your hand on his penis before you know his name.

3) That same cute guy wants to take you home;

a) No way! You’re not that kind of girl.

b) No problem. You can spot a serial killer from a mile away.

c) Say yes, but ask him to bring you by your drug dealers house first. What he doesn’t know is that the drug dealer is also an ex-boyfriend that you’re trying to make jealous. While there, a massive domestic disturbance ends with you clutching onto the ex-boyfriend, crying as the cops drag him away, for assaulting the guy you picked up.

4) During the evening out, you are stopped by a cop on a bicycle. The bike cop thinks you might be too intoxicated to be in public. You;

a) Apologize and promise to go right home. You are near tears and the ordeal is one of the most humiliating of your life.

b) Get offended and try to act sober.

c) Drunkenly berate the cop for being a bike cop. Use some of your favorite bike cop jokes like; “you know a bike cop’s Kryptonite? Stairs.” When the cop gets extremely offended and threatens to arrest you, you mockingly ask him “what are you going to do? Bring me to jail in your little basket?”

Mostly A’s – The craziest thing you’ve done lately is drive around with a set of anal beads hanging from your rearview, but that’s because no one has told you they’re not Mardis Gras beads yet.

Mostly B’s – You might fall into the wild category, but you’re not crazy. While you might take the occasional dude home, or do an illicit substance or two, your craziness is tempered with common sense.

Mostly C’s – You’re crazy.  You’re the kind of crazy where you should probably start carrying around a notebook, so you can keep track of people you need to apologize to the next day. My notebook usually just says ‘everyone’. Then, I send a mass email. Let me know if you want the template.


Photo-impaired

Some women seem born with this innate ability to take perfect photos. These women are having a lot of fun in the age of the never ending stream of selfies on Facebook, as they post photo after photo of themselves looking adorable…or like they just had collagen.

I envy these women. I envy these women because I can not take a good photo. I see these chicks pop out their cell phones and get this great photo with one shot. Meanwhile, mine looks like this;

blog pic

 

Despite the above photo (where I was apparently having a stroke while taking a dump) I wouldn’t call myself an ugly girl. All of my features are in the right place and I still have everything I was born with.

Something about taking a photo stresses me out. As I stand there, awkward smile on my face for a never ending amount of time, I feel more and more stupid. Soon that awkwardness starts to show on my face.

I have this internal discussion every time one of my friends forces me to take a group shot on a night out;

Oh, great, this again. Ok, chin up. No, literally bitch, chin up, otherwise you’ll have four….and they’ll be on Facebook. Ok, chins up, leaning forward. Now, how big should I smile? Like an open mouth laugh smile? Now I feel stupid. Is everyone looking at me? Focus, must focus. Oh, fuck chin up! God dude, take the picture. Fuck am I about to sneeze? I’m about to sneeze. Oh god, eyes are watering, I feel idiotic, can not hold this sneeze in. Take the goddamn picture! Jesus, it’s an iPhone not a particle fucking accelerator. “Ahhchooo!”

Click.

Apparently, I am allergic to having my photograph taken. You know what my only cure is? Alcohol.

When loaded, I can take one hell of a picture. Ok, so I might drunk and dial you (or email), key your car, vomit on my bathroom floor and potentially get a stern lecture from authorities, but I’ll look real nice when I’m doing it. But I can’t be loaded in all my pictures.

So I’m trying to practice in the bathroom mirror. You know, like all those chicks do on American’s next top model. But as I simper at myself in the mirror, do that duck bill thing (ridiculous, I look like that blond girl Muppet who never opens her eyes) or try any other method of looking sexy rather than ridiculous, I can’t help but envy the chicks that can pull this off.

So I’m probably just going to pull a Kim Kardashian and Photoshop. I might even give myself a neck tattoo!

 

 


Escape from IKEA – Choose Your Own Adventure

If you read my site, then you know that I’m a bit obsessed with 80’s pop culture. One thing I loved in the 80’s was choose your own adventure books. I actually loved them so much, I created one for the George Zimmerman jury selection. It’s a bit dated, but it’s still available for playing here.

But I recently had an experience at IKEA. While the IKEA experience is a bit intimidating, it also occurred to me that it makes a pretty good quest. And swashbuckling adventurer that I am, I can enjoy a good quest.

Which is why I attempted to buy a desk from them. Luckily, I just barely managed to escape from IKEA alive, but can you? Test your knowledge below by playing;

Escape from IKEA! – A Choose Your Own Adventure Rip-Off (with more swearing)

Today is a day for bravery. Today is a day for courage. Today, you will put down that remote, you will get in your car. You will buy a computer desk for your son from IKEA.

This is something that you’ve been putting off for awhile. This is for good reason. There are few places more feared than an IKEA in Orlando, Florida on a Saturday afternoon.  IKEA has this amazing ability to drive even the most even tempered person to murder. Entire families have broken up over simple trips to IKEA on a Saturday. People have been scarred for life.

You ever have this dream? You’re walking down a hallway, trying to get to the end. You can see the end, but the closer you get to it, the further it gets away. Every time you’re just about to reach it, it slides just out of reach.

Yeah, that’s kind of the design concept IKEA was built on. But today, you will do what needs to be done. So you brave the I-4 traffic and you finally make it to the Orlando IKEA.

Your bravery pales a bit when you see the parking lot.  It’s a lot like a parking lot right before a game at Yankees stadium, with significantly more Cuban people.

As you cruise the parking lot, you realize that parking is limited. You;

Park illegally

Park like 12 miles away and walk

Fuck this, you’re going home to watch reality TV


Bullying – An Overused Phrase That is Losing All its Meaning

Today, I saw a news story about a breastfeeding mom who received a letter from her school’s principal. Apparently, this woman had been breastfeeding her six-month-old in a middle school in Utah while participating in some ‘free meals’ program. The principal gave her a letter asking her to discontinue the practice.

breastfeeding-mom-given-letter-principal

 

I’ve never commented on the breastfeeding debate because I never did it myself. After I had my kid, I was way too pumped up on Fen-Fen and Ephedra to consider breastfeeding. Plus, after 9 months of sharing my body with another human, I decided I wanted it to be just mine again. I regret nothing.

But here’s the deal, I’m actually not ok with you breastfeeding in front of my 12-year-old. Yes, I know it’s beautiful and natural and everyone should bow at the knees of the almighty breastfeeding mother, but my son doesn’t think that when you pop out your boob in public.

I’m pretty sure all he thinks is “Holy shit! Tits! Tits! Tits!”

Call me a prude if you want, but I think it should be my right to decide when I need to explain breastfeeding to my son. Like it or not, in this country, breasts are private parts. This is why I’m not allowed to wander around topless.

So yes, I think people should make an effort to make breastfeeding at least semi-private (i.e. not in a room full of children). I mean Jesus, I need to sign a permission slip for my kid to go to Sex-Ed, but he can see nipples in his cafeteria? You’re fucking kidding, right?

That does not make me a bully. It doesn’t make me a prude. It makes me a parent who wants the right to explain the whole birds and bees (and yes tits are part of that) to my kid in my own way. Not because you feel like popping out a nip in the middle of a busy middle school cafeteria. Yes, I get you have your rights as a parent, but what about my rights as a parent? Does me wanting to exercise my rights as a parent by teaching him about certain things on my own time really make me a bully?

Because the nicely worded letter that the mother was given was immediately labeled as ‘bullying’ by the media.

Bullying is not a catch all phrase that you’re allowed to use against everyone that disagrees with you. Bullying is to “use superior strength or influence to intimidate (someone), typically to force him or her to do what one wants.”

The principal was making a respectful request. Whether you disagree with that request or not, it was a request. It wasn’t bullying. In fact, the mom taking the letter to the news in order to intimidate the principal into taking it all back actually fit the definition of bullying a lot more. Let’s be honest, the second that shit went viral, I’m pretty sure that school started getting hate mail left and right.

So who’s the real victim here? The woman who was given a private letter, respectfully asking that she not breastfeed in front of children whose parents whose might be uncomfortable with it? Or the woman who started the fire storm by taking that letter to the media and creating a witch hunt?

We’re using every fucking disagreement as an excuse to scream bullying. We’re using bullying to crush free speech. Hell, I see authors with bad reviews calling those people who left bad reviews bullies. Apparently, if you and someone else share a different opinion, one of you is a bully.

Usually, the bully is the one whose opinion differs from the masses. Then, the ‘victim’ uses that as an excuse to bully their own alleged bully.

It’s getting a bit fucking ridiculous. Our witch hunts for bullies are creating more bullies than ever actually existed.

I’m allowed to feel how I feel. I mean Jesus, KKK members are allowed to hold parades in this country and the ACLU supports them, but I can’t say I’m uncomfortable with public breastfeeding in front of my kid without being labeled a bully?

People will always have differing opinions, and sometimes those opinions will be unpopular. I am the current holder of an unpopular opinion and yes, I will share that opinion. That doesn’t make me a bully. I’m not trying to intimidate anyone or hurt their feelings. I’m simply saying I don’t think they’re right. Expressing my opinion does not make me a bully.

It makes me an American adult who is allowed to express her opinions…you know, that whole free speech thing.

Well, here’s my free speech. Your boobies in my son’s lunch plate do not make me think ‘wow, what a miracle.” Instead, it makes me explain things to my child that I would rather not explain to him, because he’s only friggen twelve.

I’e. my son would like to know why it’s not ok for a girl to flash her titties in a “Girls Gone Wild” video but it’s ok to do it when she’s in his cafeteria.

Anyone else was to field this one for me?

It is not my job to change the world’s opinion on breasts.  The fact is, right here in America, they are private parts. You can’t put them on TV, you can’t put them on a billboard, so why the fuck is it ok to put them in a kid’s cafeteria?

It does not make me a bully to mention my concern about the subject. It just makes me a concerned parent who has the right to parent how she feels fit.

That does not make me a bully. That just makes me a woman who disagrees with you. Deal with it.


Everything Gives You Cancer

My dog likes popsicles. Specifically, my dog likes grape popsicles, but she only really likes them if you hold them for her while she licks them. If you put the popsicle down even for a second, she gets bored and she stops licking.

My point is this; my dogs’ obsession with popsicles is a lot like the American public’s obsession with the media. We all suck it up as long as someone is spoon feeding us the information, but the second we’re expected to do anything for ourselves, we lose all interest.

Case in point; everything gives you cancer.

In the ten years I’ve been online, I’ve been sent about 7000 messages indicating some innocuous thing like number two pencils or pork barbeque was going to give me cancer. This mass panic works. People share the message. They comment on the message.

They all get together and lick the giant purple popsicle.

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Warning: This photo will probably give you cancer.

Here’s the truth people. EVERYTHING gives you cancer. When I was in the Germany, I joined a debate class mainly out of boredom, but also to get out of work details. I was only auditing, but I was still given the opportunity to make a speech when Spring finals came.

My speech was entitled ‘the benefits of smoking’ and I pissed a lot of people off.   I pointed out the decline of obesity rates in smokers and I pointed out the positive economic impact of smoking. When people argued cancer statistics, I came up with some statistics of my own.

Specifically, in a free thought poetry format I named about 400 chemicals, that you will find everyday in products in your house, that will give you cancer. Not making this up. Email me if you want the list.

After that, everybody shut up, not just because of my mad, mad lyrical skills, but also because everyone knows the Germans can’t rap.

The truth is that cancer isn’t that complicated. It is nothing more than cells multiplying at maximum pace. Once they multiple fast enough, they go from ‘calcifications’ to tumors. How do you get those cells to multiple? Constant friction.

You ever rub your hands together real fast and little rolly balls of skin start to come off? That’s pretty much the explanation of cancer, only it’s happening inside your body where you can’t control it. Much like constant friction on the inside of an oyster will create a pearl, constant friction on the inside of a human body will give you cancer.

So yes, everything will give you cancer. Hell, if I rubbed a strawberry under my left armpit long enough I’m sure I would eventually get cancer. Because the formula for cancer is surprisingly simple. Constant friction results in frequent cell turnover, but when that friction tells cells they need to turn over faster, they start creating new cells.

And abracadabra…cancer.

But cancer, no matter how simple, is still sexy. It’s still news. Those news stations want you to tune in so you can see how your air fresheners, your carpet clearer and your box of California raisins are all toxic. After all, imminent death is news worthy. The results of friction aren’t.

Everything gives you cancer. If it hasn’t yet, it will soon. But I don’t panic and I don’t argue. Instead, I start rubbing another strawberry under my armpit and I say “I’ll see you in hell bitches.”

Because if everything can give you cancer, then there’s really nothing left to avoid, now is there?


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