Saturday, October 30, 2010

Why I hate the Iphone....and other cellular pet peeves

I have a pet peeve specific to the Iphone.  Don't get me wrong there are other phone users who make the same grievous faux pas but it seems that if you get an Iphone it becomes imperative that you do there is some mind altering frequency being emitted from the earpiece...
It goes something like this...

You are in a restaurant (insert other public place or social gathering) and of course everyone takes their phones out and sets them in sight in case the sitter/spouse (or someone more important than the people you are with) calls/texts.  Inevitably two people will have iphones.  They then grab their phones and start "bumping," comparing apps or looking through websites together.  Their need to show off their toy leads them to start this elite club and exclude them from the rest of the group.  Everyone else is chatting and socializing.  They are chiming in every now and again with a "look at this thing my phone can do" and show you a pair of rolling dice or a zippo you can light by shaking the phone.  When you get home you discover fifteen pics and status updates from the evening on their facebook which is funny b/c they would have had more fun actually interacting with the people there rather than having a playdate with their phone and five of their phone's closest friends.

I get irritated with the lack of social skills of many cell phone users.  My husband thinks I am overreacting and not changing with the times.  I truly think, however, that chatting on the phone while in the car is rude to the other people who might like to be chatting with you in person.  Texting and updating your FB status while in a small group social setting is also rude.  I have texted people while out socially but generally they go like this "where are you?" "when are you getting here" or "are the children ok and the house still standing"

Cell phones are great things.  Gone are the days of leaving sixteen emergency numbers for the sitters.   Gone are the days of having to find a pay phone and risking scary cootie germie bugs to call someone while out.  Gone are the days of having to answer the phone when my mother in law calls (now she calls my husband's phone exclusively...not sure she even has my number).  I just worry that we have created a huge umbilical cord to the cyberworld, so much so that we can't go more than a few minutes without checking email, FB, or blogs/message boards.  The world wide web is great but it will never replace an actual friend and a real social relationship.....

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Greatest Show on Earth

Took the kids to see the circus yesterday.  We had the best time.  I had seen the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey circus as a child and really wanted to take the kids to see it too.  I kept getting scared off by ticket prices.  This time I threw grown-up-ness to the wind and got them.

The boys were so excited to see their first circus.  Brian had never been to a circus before so this was his first as well.  We got there an hour early so we could see the all access pre-show.  They let everyone down on the floor and have different rings set up so you can see and try different activities and meet the performers.  We got to meet the girl who does the acrobat act in the rings while Dylan tried on some really LOUD costume jackets from the wardrobe.  Brenden got to have a tug of war with a couple of the clowns during one of their bits and had a hat juggler throw him a hat (which he totally messed up throwing back and almost hit another spectator in the face).  We got to see the stilt walkers up close and get tattoos from a couple dancers.  We watched Kelli the Elephant paint a picture with a paintbrush and easel.  We got our own clown noses.  It was quite the experience.  There was so much to look at I didn't know where to start.

Then we got to our seats.  The kids were mesmerized by the lights and sounds.  There were tightrope walkers, trapeze artists, a motorcylist tight rope rider, motorcycles in a metal ball, tigers, horses, a dog riding a horse, contortionists, elephants, llamas, ponies, clowns, singing, name it.  The show went on for two hours with only a short intermission.  The smoothness of the transitions between acts was so fluid you hardly noticed it.  The real stars of the show are the and silent like ninjas.....although enough can't be said for the way the physical stunts were done and looked so effortless despite the stamina they took.

 I did learn some things about myself at the circus... First, not all clowns freak me out.  Usually they make me uncomfortable and something in my head screams "potential pedophile".....don't know why.  I guess a combination of the news and Stephen King have ruined them for me for life....  Second, contortionists do freak me out.  During their bit I had to keep looking away.  There is something wrong with being able to fit three adult women in a tiny glass cube.  and your head should never be able to look upside down at your butt.  Third....either tigers, elephants, llamas, or ponies make my nose runny and itchy.  I have a dog so I ruled that one animal out.

After the circus we were going to go bum at the zoo since its free in St Louis.  However after thirty minutes of waiting in traffic, the lot for the zoo closed.  We instead went to a park in the area and played with our boomerang that we bought at the circus while waiting for dinner time.  When we were all tired out we went to the Hill neighborhood for dinner.  We ended up getting there kind of early so we wandered through an authentic Italian corner store.  We went back after dinner to pick up some real italian groceries for dinner this week and some gelato for dinner.

I would be remiss, however if I didn't tell you about dinner.  We went to Cunettos on the Hill.  OMG....homemade italian pasta.  I started my meal with one of the best house salads EVER.  Our waitress was this sweet italian lady (as in English is my second language) who doted on the boys and kept telling me how handsome they were.  I ordered some fettucini carbonara which came in this bathtub sized bowl.  I ate until I thought I was going to explode and had two more meals to take home.  Dyl got ravioli which he inhaled and then used a spoon to eat all the sauce off (which if you know captain picky pants never happens).  The waitress came by while he was spooning the sauce and then came back with a side order of spaghetti (gratis) because she felt worried that he was going to be hungry.

It ended up being close to 9pm when we got home (there was a closed expressway and a detour).  We had left at 8am.  (Brian and I had gone to see a band the night before so we were operating on about four hours sleep).  The most amazing thing was, there was very little whining, bickering, or yelling yesterday.  Our trip to the greatest show on earth lead to one of the greatest family days on earth that we've had in a long time....and I have 350 pics to remember it by :)

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Sandpaper People

God talks to me.  Not in that crazy, we have a glass of wine and he advises me on my stock options kind of way.  Not in the call the guys in the white coats with the straight jackets kind of way.  But he talks to me.

Yesterday I checked in on my favorite girlfriends daily devotional blog (which is only daily if I actually had time to check it daily instead of randomly).  The topic was loving others the way they are and loving unconditionally.  Including Sandpaper People.  You know Sandpaper people.  The ones who rub all your nerves raw.  The ones who you duck into a storage closet to avoid when you see them coming down the hall.  The ones who make you tense and uncomfortable.  As I read this I had an image of a person pop into my head.

Tonight I went to my Why Catholic? class.  As much as it sounds super geeky it is a type of bible study/catechism study group for adults.  We look at the church's belief tenets and their roots in the scripture and talk about them in terms of the real world.  We have a group of eight and have excellent, deep discussions.  It is one of my favorite two hours of the week.  Our discussion topic tonight?  Love one another as I love you.....and the 10 commandments. everyone?  Even the sandpaper people.

It is amazing though if you stop and think of the basic premise of the 10 commandments in terms of the big picture.  Have faith, don't want what you haven't got, be nice, don't take what isn't yours.   Hmmmmm....have faith.  Not kill people because they don't have YOUR faith.  Just have A FAITH in GOD....
Don't want what isn't yours, don't be jealous, don't take it if it isn't yours.  True riches are intangible things. Love, the laughter of children, the wisdom of elders, friendship.  No amount of money will buy you those things.  Jealousy breeds contempt, anger, competition.  Have you ever worked really hard on your house and fallen into bed at night full of satisfaction and exhaustion?  Was that feeling awesome?  How about when you have done something you know was probably not your shining moment of good-ness?  Was that feeling as good?
What if countries followed this motto? Here are our borders.  We'll stay out of yours and treat you like we would like to be treated.

What if I followed this motto?  What if I was kind to the Sandpaper Person in my life.  The one I have ranted and raved to my husband about.  The one I say is self centered and disrespectful.  What if instead of saying hurtful things behind her back and totally avoiding her I stepped up and treated her the way I would like to be treated, with kindness.  With respect and dignity.  With a smile and a compliment or kind word.  How would that change my days?

I will let you know....

Monday, October 11, 2010

Things that make you go "WHUCK?"

Whuck is my new favorite word.  I acquired it from my reading of a blog titled "Rants from Mommyland"
It rocks.  It is a curse without actually being a curse.  It works perfectly for describing some of the more ludicrous things I experience this:

My hubby bought me a new flat iron for my birthday.  It is fabulous because where as I go in and buy the $14.99 special he actually goes to the beauty supply and asks which one within a certain price range is the best and then actually spends money on it.  It came with a manual entitled USER INSTRUCTIONS which has helpful information in three languages.  I bet you didn't know that there were five pages of necessary instructions and safety warnings involved with a basic flat iron (I think I was even a huge rebel and and used it before reading the directions....despite the warning to really thoroughly before use).  Among the informational gems are:

*Do not use while bathing.   Damn...I was going to save time by shampooing and straightening at the same time.....

*Do not place in or drop into water or other liquid.   --- There goes my plan to iron my hair and stir my coffee with it

*Close supervision by an experienced adult is needed when this appliance is used by, on, or near children or invalids. ---- Hmmmm....not even sure what to say about this one

*This appliance is hot when in use (nahhh really?!?) Do not let eyes touch heated surfaces. -- I might have a larger than normal head but HOW THE HECK WOULD I TOUCH MY EYE TO THE FLAT IRON? Pretty sure unless it is popping out of my head the fact that the iron doesn't open flat would prevent that.....

*Never use while sleeping ---- This one is my favorite.  I am a secret sleep hairstylist...its a rare form of sleep walking.  Glad they warned me of the dangers.....

*Never drop or insert any object into any opening.  --- Does this mean I may not use it to insert the chocolate candy into my open mouth....

*Do not use outdoors or operate where aerosol spray products are being used or where oxygen is being administered. --- And I so like to take mine camping and to the ICU....  I am confused how to use my hairspray in a different room and then run back to the bathroom where I use the flat iron without the hairspray drying in the process.....

Now don't you feel safer already.  The scary part for me is that these were probably all written in response to some idiot's lawsuit.  I tried to pass it off as a bad translation from Chinese to English until I saw the fine print... distributed by ****, Omaha, NE......