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Monday, June 30, 2014

How to be Cheap

How to be Cheap
Subtitle: Extreme Cheapskates is giving my heart failure. 
And I grew up poor.

I can't even start this with a step. 

It began with the fact that dinner needs to be no later than 6:30 or my children will die of starvation and Sookie doesn't start till 9. 

Obviously, we need to fill the time. 

Now we HAD been watching The Amazing Race, but that is over, and we turned to Netflix to try to find Storage Wars (yes, yes, something else I have in common with Mr. Canadian Hot Pants). 

Lo and behold we find, Extreme Cheapskates. 




We're gonna start with a rant. 

I grew up po' (that's the step below poor). Hot dogs (and kind that you don't wanna know the ingredients to) cut up on boxed macaroni OR ramen noodles. We rented a house on the farm and the farmer brought us free veggies and meat and stuff. I learned how to cut corners in home repair, and how to double a coupon and sign up for freebies in the mail. 

THAT is being cheap. 

Being said, here are my simple steps to being CHEAP and NOT be GROSS. 

I'm just gonna go down episodes...

Step 1: Don't ask for people's food. Yes, it seems wasteful but PEOPLE are GROSS and dirty. Do not get up and ask them for their leftovers. 



One adult dinner plate at average restaurant = $15
Eating SAME THING ABOUT HOME is usually around $4

Trust me, Gordan Ramsey makes this a Hell's Kitchen challenge. 



The average person uses about 30 rolls of toilet paper per year. Let's round on the high side. Let's say that rolls are $2each  and you use 40. 

That's $80 a year!! A YEAR! Not a month, a year. 

Someone's gonna lecture me about third world, history, blah blah, but if you are reading this YOU are using the internet. 

Welcome to the First World. 

BUY toilet paper. 

Or at least a bidet. 

Step 3: If you aren't gonna buy food for yourself, fine, but DO NOT FEED YOUR GUESTS YOUR NONSENSE. 

In the pilot, a lady fed her neighbors' kids pizza made from expired ingredients and wild grass salad that they foraged NOT from their woods (MY kids forage berries from OUR land all the time) but a PUBLIC PARK.  In the second episode the woman featured had guests over and served them food that had LITERALLY been taken OUT of the trash bag on the street. 

You want us to accept YOUR lifestyle? 
Then accept OURS. 
And that is UNSANITARY.

Again, remember my background? I KNOW how long food is good after the date, I KNOW, and what was going on in this show was NOT remotely safe or sanitary. 

Wanna save money on food?

I'd like to introduce you to coupons. You don't need to buy a paper. You can load them on store cards that are also free. 

Better yet? You REALLY don't wanna pay?


A lot of my family STILL grow a substantial amount of their own food. 

Step 4: Buy clothes, or at least make them. 

There is NOTHING wrong with a thrift store, nothing, I ADORE the Goodwill, or swapping with friends but clothes are organic. They wear, they fray, they can get to a point where they smell like B.O. no matter HOW many times you wash them. 


And not even THROWN OUT, you can use them in your garden, or as cleaning rags (so you don't need to buy as many paper towels) but bragging about not buying underwear since 1998??

I'd like to reiterate, FILTHY. 

Step 5: Ok, so I could kinda get on board with the fiscal week off (not spending money for a week) because we do that every now and then, but usually out of frustration for going to the store, or really busy with work, etc. 

So, dude on show goes out and forages for change because that will not break his rule and comes up with $7.50. 

He declares he is going to buy meat. 

Now...around here, a rotisserie chicken is $5.99. There is usually a meat of the week that is $2 - $3 a pound. Just looking through my local Kroger ad, I can get chicken breast for $2.49 a pound this week, STEAK for $4.99, and I think I saw lamb...

My point is, TWO, YOU and YOUR WIFE by portion control options are supposed to eat 1/4 - 1/2 pound of meat max, which means for $7.50 that you DUG out of the dryer you COULD get:

1 pound of chicken or lamb
1 box of Rice-a-Roni (at FULL price it's only $1.89 but it is never NOT on sale)
1 head of broccoli or bag of baby carrots

THAT is food.

You just bought that goat head to be cute and the butcher "giving" them to you for $7.50? My brother is in a heavy metal band. Guess how much HE pays for heads at the butcher?


I rest my case.

Step 6:  I just can't anymore. I've turned the show off, I'm not sure if I can ever watch this again. People ate out of dumpsters and crawled through filth for change. These are NOT people that are impoverished and need financial help from the government, these are people who have jobs or are married and their spouse has a job and keep saying on the show that they don't need to do this, they choose to.

And this is why I can't watch reality TV.

Thursday, June 26, 2014


Subtitle: Congrats WGN, because as much as I love "The Walking Dead" you win. 

Step 1: F*#k history. Seriously, because if you think 'The Crucible' turned the Salem Witch trails into a farce of historical fiction, Mr. Miller and Miss Ryder can't hold a candle to WGN's Salem. 

Good guys are bad guys, bad guys are good guys and as a history teacher I just gave up trying to fix the plethora historical inaccuracies. It was like watching Troy, except without Brat Pitt running around naked. 

That's ok, because EVERYONE ELSE DOES. 

These are the nastiest Puritans that I have ever seen...

Dr. Scanlon, remember making me read that book about the Puritans not being so pure? 

That book's got NOTHING on Salem :)

Step 2: Tip a hat to pop culture. 

Do you remember this?? Just click, you'll thank me... 

Now read THIS, from the script (can't get video, license and whatnot) 

Yea, that happened. 

I rewound it about FIVE times. 

I'm actually having to compose myself to continue to blog about this. 

Step 3: Make sure to COMPLETELY destroy a religion. Okay, so this is based on the Salem witch trails, which as we all know was about the Puritans, in the name of God trying to cleanse their section of the colonies from the evils of witchcraft. One of the main characters is Cotton Mather, an actual person, who you can read about here: Wikipedia, don't lecture me on .edu's right now...

For those NOT inclined to read, here is good old Cotton:

And here is Cotton on Salem. 

Did I mention he QUOTES Revelation at the height of his, um, satisfaction??

Here's another script clip, just for you...

Did I rewatch that part?

To quote Sarah Palin...YOU BETCHA! 

However, before the Christians get upset, they don't just stop with the desecration of THEIR religion, oh no, Salem is equal opportunity...

Step 4: Insult two religions, just for good measure. Anyone KNOW a Wiccan? 

I do, in fact, I'm related to a few. 

Here's what WICCANS (i.e. Witches) believe: I got this site from someone that ACTUALLY practices!!!

Go ahead, read up, scan everything because GUESS what Wiccans DO NOT worship?


That's right, no Satan. Only nature.  
Keeping that in mind this is what Wicca is: (again I got this FROM A WICCAN to be sure)

"Wicca is the formalized system of worship that reveres the Goddess and the God of ancient pagan belief.
There are lots of different "schools" of wicca (like denominations in Christian religion), but they share mostly similar rituals and beliefs." 

Basically, Wicca are the people who are telling you to drink this tea and that to settle your stomach. In fact, every Wiccan I know is kind, caring and sweet. 

Let's talk about the witches of Salem:
  • They stuff frogs and snakes into people to make them do their bidding. 
  • They go into catatonic sex trances to mess with people inside their heads.
  • They let their familiars eat them like some sort of vampire, but only in sexy places ;)
  • They were ALL inducted by Satan, making him a VERY busy little Devil to get around that much. 
  • They are also planning the Apocalypse....
Which begs the question...

Who's calling Buffy?

As you can see, I'm NOT!! 

Step 5: Rip off classic horror. You wanna sell a horror show that is NOT about zombies and vampires but then realize after you write the damn thing that everyone else is doing witches too??

Head back to the 1980's to get some inspiration. 

Here's a box that Mary Sibley so desperately needs to bring about "Last Days" : 

This is the box from horror classic "Hellraiser" :

Later, Mr. Hale uses a mask that transports them wherever they need to go (which is usually the creepy ass woods full of *gasp* natives): 

Now, it's not horror, but...

I'd like to state, for the record, that I am NOT one of those people that notices stuff like this (in fact, I sit at Stargate Con and smile and nod and act like I have ANY clue what in that hell episode that was, because, I don't, ever) but if I'm noticing this, then, someone's NOT trying to hide it. 

Step 6: Know your role...

True Blood = Vampire Porn

Bitten = Werewolf Porn

Coven (or so I hear) = Witch Porn


That's a LOT of skin for Basic Cable, just sayin'.

Step 7: Mention everyone hating and killing the Puritans, including the Puritans themselves once every five minutes. 

I have this thing with a friend of mine, who I called to get help on this blog with, who's ranting, right now (he's on speaker phone) and his rants went something like this (paraphrased).

"It's because they were NASTY people...if you point me to a problem I can connect it to the Puritans. See! No! That's what this show is doing! The writers are telling us that it's TIME to CUT our PURITANICAL BONDS! They know we're too lazy and stupid to fix America, but if we present it as an allegory as to WHY these people ruined our lives and history you can see how they've destroyed everything. We're trapped in a religion that every European country was like, nah, y'all gotta LEAVE (I cannot understand what he is ranting right now...can't type that fast....)

I wonder if I can get audio....

(End of rant: "You know how I get if you call and ask me about the Puritans. Why did you do that?")

Step 8: Make sure to ruin all medicine we have learned about in whiny TV medical dramas because in Salem we can cut animals OUT OF YOUR stomach and you live cut open FOR DAYS.

Case #1: Mercy Lewis. Here's good 'ole Mercy with snake...

And then her dear old dad Reverend Lewis does some home operating (again, they have removed the episode "Lies" from the web so I can't screen cap it) but without so much as ONE stitch being shown she is suddenly up and about...

Case #2: George Sibley

Now, considering the frog came up and down his throat, why he didn't think to puke is beyond me but, here you go...

And then, miraculously, his sits like this...

Now granted, magic blah blah blah but it takes at LEAST a few hours for this magical help to arrive. 

From someone who has cut a leg shaving, a lot, BLOOD GUSHES...

So, either Shonda Rimes has taught me nothing OR I need to continue to suspend my disbelief. 

Step 9: Have everyone be fully dressed at all times outside of sex scenes including the Native Americans (who when they are not dressed are painted, completely) except for SHANE WEST / JOHN ALDEN who must do EVERYTHING shirtless. 

(Again, because they keep taking pics and episodes off of Hulu, you get this)

But seriously, every time this man completes a SINGLE chore, he's shirtless. 




And no one bats an eye. Not that I'm complaining, but since they keep scolding women about hats and necklines one would THINK that sweaty pecs are equally as offensive.

Step 10: Cotton Mather YOU WIN.

You are in love with a prostitute and quote the Bible IN THE ACT. 

You drink more than a frat boy. 

You dabble in the voodoo. 

And when you get mad at daddy you do this...

Get drunk, climb in a tree, and pee on John Alden. 

I even was Cotton on the official "Who are you?" character quiz :D 

So, if you're looking for some quality entertainment on Sundays at 10/9c, tune into WGN. 

You WON'T be sorry. 

And, I might even try to make a drinking game for this show, so stay tuned. 

Monday, June 2, 2014

How to End the Mommy Wars

How to End the Mommy Wars
Subtitle: My response to the viral articles that have been gaining momentum, and what I think a NORMAL person has to say. 
Sub sub title: My blogs are long, kiss it. If you want lists go to Buzzfeed.

Here I was, trolling Facebook, pissed of because my DAMN Achilles Tendon is acting up again and I couldn't run much today when I found THIS article: 

I clicked, of course, because as the parent that LITERALLY was GAWKED at at my kid's school a few times (the most notable being when my hair was blue) I was curious. See, in some ways as a parent I am VERY traditional, when in others liberal does not go as far to describe how I parent. So when it comes to ending the "Mommy Wars" I'm all for it, because life shouldn't be a constant competition of trendy bullcrap that makes you look better than the next person, it should be about having a good time, making a difference, or treating others with respect.

I clicked. 


Ok, can I make this ANY clearer...


*Full disclosure*

As soon as I typed that I searched for a particular quote on living in absolutes to use and make sure it was correct attributed but this one is much better:

We ALL know what happens after this right? 

If not, you might wanna start watching Star Wars. 

Ok, so here is my response for the "Ending the Mommy Wars" - the COMMON SENSE version. 

*Disclaimer #2* - I am WELL aware of them using absolutes as an illustration of the different ends of the spectrum. Emotional, brow-beaten moms and the general public may NOT be as aware. 

Image 1: 

Natural Home Birth vs. Scheduled C-section

Here's a concept...ASK YOUR DOCTOR!!! 

Put aside the crap you've read on trendy grocery store magazines and ask someone who spent MOST of their adult life learning how to understand the human body and let THEM guide you. I have actually seen blogs discuss doctors "selling out" to big pharm blah blah blah. 

Then YOU'VE got the wrong doctor. 

Get off your butt and find a good one and stop letting someone with a computer and internet connection tell you what is best for you, your child and your body (yes, I too see the irony in that statement). 

Image 2: 

Breastfeed versus formula. 

I formula fed Will. 

I breastfed Clare. 

I did not feel connected with my child or any of that other stuff breastfeeding. 

I know right? The horror! I am SUCH a bad mom. 

Point is, I was formula day one and am a successful person. My sister was breastfed from day one and is a honors college student. We are both VERY healthy and active. You can do either, both, or a mix, as I did. 

Your kid will NOT die, trust me. 

Image 3: 

Work "outside" the home versus Stay at home mom. 

First, as someone who works FULL time in a CAREER position INSIDE the home, I take offense at that PC "outside the home" nonsense. Let's call a spade a spade, you either work or you don't. 


OR, god forbid, you can work part-time inside the home, or outside of the home, or do home-sales, or be a stay at home mom that keeps kids or be a stay at home mom that is a super volunteer in your kids lives. 

Just get over that work crap already. 

Image 4 - 7: I was ok with these, I felt they were pretty reasonable. Any you want me to address, let me know in the comments :) 

Image 8: 

The fact that you had to put "reasonably" in your poster pretty much makes my entire case here and negates your article. Who are you afraid is gonna call you out? That disclaimer being needed pretty much makes those of us who let them cry it out (and you're damn right I did, after I changed, food check etc., you cry, I leave room and done) now have to define reasonable thereby starting another mommy war. 

Nice move there...

Image 9: 

And the bi parents? Just sayin'

Image 10: 

Again, ok fine, no beef.

Image 11: 

Ok, this is getting long for me and I'm just too bored to continue. My point is this. My kids eat McDonald's and they also like to walk to the farm stand a few miles down the road and pick out organic watermelons. There IS a middle ground, one founded in REASON and LOGIC. There is NO such thing as the perfect parent, even if you follow every trend, every book that Dr. Sears puts out, every ounce of guidance from your parents. 

You're gonna screw up, probably a lot. 

You're gonna have to do different things for different kids that work for YOUR family. 

And you know what? The fact that you took the time to CARE enough to even read something like this, says a lot about how much you care anyways. 

Keep fighting the good fight!