Some Open Notes To All Those I Encountered Today

Today is May 1st. I should be rejoicing the coming of this day, for it is the beginning of May No Shave Month. Every year in the month of May, I shave nothing. No legs. No pits. No bikini area. I do it because then on June 1st I take a razor to sasquatch and it feels so unbelievably good. I also think it’s a celebration of being a woman – I mean, why do we have to shame ourselves into shaving off what is natural and there normally? Other cultures don’t. Why shame us for being ourselves, ‘merica?

Sadly, there was no rejoicing today. Or at least not much beyond the few moments I was deep in the heart of LA and able to again get away with driving like a total maniac (my natural state). To look at just why today was so lackluster and – well – horrible, we should look at all those I encountered today.

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Poor Nick

Oh darling. I would love to actually sleep a little in the morning. I know this is hard for you to comprehend and all, being the only person on the planet (in your mind). But every night I spend about 3/4 of the night waking up and taking the covers back from you since you’ve stolen them all; or helping one of the various people that has woken up and needed something. I am tired. So the next door you slam in the morning. The next bowl you smash onto the counter. The next wrist watch, keys, or wallet you drop onto the coffee table. The next electric toothbrush you use loudly with the bathroom door open. All of it will be inserted into your asshole next time you wake me up with your bullshit loud banging around in the morning.

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And on the note of assholes…

Mom

Mother. The kid’s bathroom is also the guest bathroom. You know this because as a guest you have many times come over and asked to use the bathroom, and you have always been shown the door to that one. In the kid’s bathroom is a can of air freshener. For guests. Use it.

When I came home from dropping you and Grandma off at the airport, it smelled like a dog had taken a dump in every single corner of the apartment. I had to open all the windows to air it out. Please. Febreeze.

And on the note of bodily functions…

Lady At CVS

Lady at CVS. I get it. You were wiggling around in line in front of me, as I waited to pick up my dad’s prescription, because you had gas. I turned a blind eye (and my nose) as you ripped one so loud even the kid two aisles over started giggling. I’m not a fan of flatus jokes, I’m really not; I’m also not a fan of talking with strangers about what they had for lunch. I did not appreciate when you turned around and told me that you had too many beans at the Mexican place down the street for lunch. Next time, keep it to yourself.

And on the note of keeping things to ourselves…

Grandma

Grandma, I kept it to myself as we traveled to the airport this morning, but I just have to say it: most of your kids and grandkids are jerk offs. I sent them an email about Mother’s Day and not a one of them responded. Not even to graciously decline coming to my apartment for BBQ. I get it. They hate me. My cousin Kevin informed me of that years ago. But I continue to extend olive branches to these people, because I know it’s what you want, and they just continue to take a dump on me time and time. And time again.

One additional open note for you, Grandma: you were right this morning when you joked that I need Depends more than you ladies at the assisted living facility do. It’s become pretty clear that my bladder is the size of a cashew.

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And on the note of old people habits…

Dad

Dad. Shut the fuck up with your bitching about physical therapy. Shut the fuck up about your constant blathering about the situations you need the walker. You aren’t getting it. It’s time to suck it up or get out. I’m tired of sleeping on an air mattress on your living room floor. I’m tired of running 70 fucking errands a day for you. I’m tired of cooking all your meals all to your bullshit “I don’t like healthy food” specifications where I have to sneak healthy food into your food to make you not realize that you are eating well, because God forbid you fucking have a diet other than soda and Twizzlers. Seriously. Shut it.

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And speaking of people that need to shut it…

People That Think Los Angeles Is The Greatest Thing Next To French Toast

LA is a shithole. Anyone that contends otherwise can for real shut it. Shut it hard core, or my fist will shut it for you.

Los Angeles is disgusting. Everything looks dirty. Everyone is angry. Everyone drives like a fucking maniac (which I do enjoy on the occasion I go down there, I will admit). All the freeways are dumps covered in cars full of people that should be at work. But wait! I’m starting to realize that people in LA don’t work. They talk. And drive. And drink their hipster lattes. And mooch off others.

After living in Los Angeles for two years, I cannot stand going there, except for (as I mentioned above) the fact that I have an opportunity to drive with my psychosis set on “high.” And on that note, I also want to mention to all those asscans that say “ohhhhhh…. you are just sooooooooo lucky to live near LA because you can go there where there is sooooooo muuuuuuch to doooooo.” Fuck you. Everything in LA costs a bagillion and one dollars, and even the shit that is free costs me 50 bucks in gas.

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And on one last note of people who get a big fuck you…

Our Apartment Complex

Fuck you, Essex Property Trust. Fuck you Camarillo Oaks. Fuck you apartment complex management and apartment complex. I’ve reached my last fucking straw with you dickholes.

Today we got a letter that due to some incidents with the kids in the area (not mine) destroying people’s personal property, children are no longer allowed to play or even be out in the complex without the clear supervision of an adult. This includes the patios on our very own apartment – kids cannot play on them without an adult being out there as well. So while I understand legalities and all the apartment complex faces, I find it terribly disturbing that the management is just SO CONCERNED about someone’s fucking flower pot being kicked over; and yet, they are in no way concerned about the rampant drug use and sales that go on in the community.

Just a few minutes after receiving the letter, I saw and smelled someone smoking a joint out on their patio; then saw a bong in someone’s kitchen window as I got in my Jeep to leave that shithole to run more bullshit errands for my dad. Seriously. If you’re going to ruin my fucking life by making me sit outside with my Pookies at all times; and yet not break the very serious drug problem going on in the community, you can consider this our official end of lease.

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A lot of assholes, asses, and related things going on in my day. You know why I’m so angry now? Do you faithful blog followers understand why my face is red and my blood pressure through the roof? When all of this bullshit goes on, I just want to hide under the covers and tell the world to go away.

But then what would I have to blog about?

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Has the Blogosphere Become High School All Over Again?

Short answer: YES. Long answer:

I wrote a blog about six months ago called “Are Bloggers Becoming Mean Girls?” In it I argued against the notion that bloggers are cliquey. I had seen some bloggers complaining about how they couldn’t seem to “break in” to the mom blog, and other blog community, cliques, and for this they felt a great injustice. In the post, I started by saying:

In high school, I hated the cliques. Now when I think of them I think of Mean Girls with Linsay-the-trainwreck-Lohan. When you have cliques, you have backstabbing. You have cheating. You have a load of gossip. You have more drama than a daytime soap opera. And you have people being excluded for no reason other than that they aren’t “cool” enough, by whatever standards of “cool” the clique collectively determines. I have a hard time believing that bloggers have become Mean Girls.

Either I was terribly wrong, or things have changed. A lot. Today – over six months after writing that blog – I believe more than ever that bloggers are the new Mean Girls. In fact, I know exactly who could be slated as the main characters (although I’ll keep that opinion to myself).

Let’s examine how my opinions have changed.

#1 Good versus Bad Content

In my post six months ago, I argued that maybe it isn’t really you or your blog, per se; just that you were not one of the more popular blogs because you had an absence of good blog content. And this is perhaps the most compelling reason in my mind now for proof that the blogosphere has become high school all over again: there is more bad content out there than my mom’s supply of edible panties.

It’s just like in high school. The meanest and ugliest girls were always the most popular. The douchiest guys with the worst acne were co-captains of the football team.

Sure, when you give access to a portal of information sharing to anyone and everyone, you’re going to have gads of bad content. But I’m not just talking about your run-of-the-mill crap that never gets around. I’m referring to the truly bad content that gets thousands (dare I suggest millions?) of hits. That everyone knows about. The bad content that people “like” and comment and share and find witty, in spite of its over all dryness, lack of whit, lack of insight, and glaring grammatical errors.

Here’s the deal: if you are going to call yourself a writer, be one. Only post what’s good. Get the opinion of others (and by that I mean objective others, not your BFFs) before you just assume that anything coming out of you is the next best thing to bars of gold. If you think you’re a writer, prove it with good spelling and appropriate grammar, and nipping your verbosity problem in the bud once and for all. Make sure everything you write about has something to do with your overall point. And for God’s sakes, make sure your blog post makes at least one ounce of sense.

Otherwise, you’re just another pimply captain of the football team, or mean girl wandering the halls of high school. You may be popular, but in the end your blog is nothing but garbage.

#2 Lying versus Honesty

I think that when I wrote that post last year, I was terribly idealistic as to the nature of the blog community. I suggested that your blog may not be that popular because you are dishonest. I really believed that truth prevailed in the world of the blogosphere – as if it is not merely a microcosm of the world at large, where the only people who truly prevail are those whose words uttered are rarely truth.

In high school, everyone creates themselves and others through a series of lies. That’s how the gossip train starts as well. In real life, we’re all supposed to transcend beyond all this lying bullshit and to achieve our successes off honesty.

How infrequently that happens – in life, as well as the blogosphere.

I know a lot of big gun bloggers that lie through their teeth, so much so that there is probably little truth to anything they say. It’s one thing to be anonymous or to change characteristics of people for safety and fairness and such. It’s another thing to fake celebrity endorsements. To claim site statistics that the public record on Alexa shows are clearly false. To say you write for all these different sites, when in fact those sites wouldn’t touch you with a ten foot poll.

To call yourself a writer.

Not to get too uppity about this, but there is actually a criteria for calling yourself a writer. Any old blogger is not a writer. For one, a writer of fiction and Fox News has the liberty to lie. The rest do not. For two, a writer writes good content with attention to rules of writing – as mentioned in point #1. (And to those you unaware, yes: there are rules of writing.) Without some attention to these things, some honesty and brevity, a blogger cannot call him or herself a writer any more than I can call myself the Dalai Lama or Mother Theresa.

Well they can, but it would be a lie.

#3 Gossip and Exclusion

What I’ve learned more than anything over the last six months since writing “Are Bloggers Becoming Mean Girls?” is that the blogosphere (at least the parenting blog blogosphere) is loaded with gossip and exclusion. Really great blogs are excluded all the time – and I can’t really put my finger on why. There is a lot of “you pat my back, I’ll then turn that back on you and pretend we don’t know each other” as well. I see it all the time, and is another thing I spoke to the contrary six months ago.

And the gossip is worse than high school. In high school the gossip hurt – don’t get me wrong, it did. People said I stuffed my bra when my boobs grew overnight. That hurt, but it went away eventually. I got over it. One time a friend of mine was dating another friend and a gossip train started that she was cheating on him. That caused some drama in our circle of friends; yet, perhaps more mature than some of the adults I know in the blogging community, as a group we talked about it and it all worked out.

Not in the blog community, though. Here the gossip runs rampant. There is no end to it. There are no resolutions. So and so is doing this to screw everyone else. This writer is stealing content. That writer is not giving us proper credit. God it’s awful, and everywhere – email, Twitter, and the ever-ominous Facebook updates that are meant to be vague, but cause such a ruckus you start to wonder what the point is of any of this.

Courtesy of FriendFace Town ... for more of their satire on all the weirdness on Facebook  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Friendface-Town/484841884903320

Courtesy of FriendFace Town … for more of their satire on all the weirdness on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/Friendface-Town/484841884903320

Here’s the thing about blogging: it’s a double-edged sword. Everyone can do it. But then again, everyone (with a computer and an opinion) can do it. There is a lot of bad stuff out there. There is a lot of good stuff out there too. There are popular blogs, sure; but there are no cool people. As a fellow blogger, or just a reader who likes information other than what the mass media puts out there, take a step back from your old-favorites and take a look around. Falling for the bad content and the lies, and narrowing yourself to a small group for no reason other than you don’t know any better, makes you nothing more than a bleating sheep. For every bit of crap you fall for, day in and day out, there is a world of awesome out there, just waiting to be discovered.

Well, now I’m one of those pageant people…

I’m not sure how this happened. I’ve never really been a fan of pageants. You know those moms dress their little toddlers up like painted whores and prance them around, getting them to act like little, miniature adults and shit. Not for me. I also don’t usually dig reality TV pageantry – you know America’s Next Top Model, those chef shows, all the singing ones.

I’m not sure why, I just sometimes think that people should stop trying to be better than each other and just accept that we all have our own qualities that make us great.

Now ignore everything I just said, because I’ve become one of those pageant people. To be fair, this isn’t really a pageant, per se. It has nothing to do with beauty. It also involves no parading (I don’t think). It’s a contest. Possibly the greatest contest of all contests, and I’ve entered it: Blogger Idol.

So you faithful blog followers are now being tasked with three, glorious tasks.

(1) You remember when America’s Funniest Home Videos had that call-in number and you could vote from home and you felt totally a part of Hollywood because you cast your vote for “dog falling into swimming pool” or “guy busts balls on pile of bricks?” Well, now it’s time to feel that awesome again by clicking on this linky link and posting a comment that you want this B(itch) (Heather Schmidt) from the B(itch)Log to make it into the contest.

http://www.facebook.com/bloggeridol

(2) Read my contest audition, here:

My name is Heather Christena Schmidt. My blog is called the B(itch)Log, which is located on my personal website – HeatherChristenaSchmidt.com. I’m a reformed philosophy graduate student-turned-writer, and am working on a book-length satire about raising kids in California. My most important role, though, is that of a full-time housewife and homeschooling mother, which is why when it comes to blogging, I primarily consider myself a “mom blogger.”

I have been blogging for a few years now. I write about a breadth of topics on my blog, from commentary on technology and blogging tips, to things I encounter in my community and home as a parent and housewife. I have a weekly theme, titled “STFU Fridays;” my blog followers know me best for my bizarre disdain for hillbillies, hipsters, and overachieving parents; and, I try to post three to five times a week to keep things current. In March of this year, I was Freshly Pressed on WordPress’s homepage, which helped to push my readership to roughly 950 blog subscribers, 1,950 Twitter followers, and close to 800 Facebook fans.

I hemmed and hawed for some time about whether to audition for Blogger Idol, mainly because I had no idea what made me deserved of the title “Idol” for the next year. But then I scrolled through pages and pages of comments in which my faithful blog followers attested to how blunt, honest, and “took the words right out of my mouth” my writing is. I have a hard time not writing exactly as I think. I also have a hard time holding back stories and anecdotes just because I’m afraid it’s too personal. I believe the most important task a blogger has is to write with sincerity. Despite my close to 100,000 blog views, and the controversial nature of some of my posts, I have only received a total of three “hate mail”-type comments, which I consider a great achievement. You cannot please everyone, but I think I’m able to get away with my blunt, cynical griping more than some simply because I infuse it with as much humor as I can muster. (Either that, or people just visit my site to steal my pictures, something I admit I consider often.) And above all, I try to relate my blog posts to the ever-present theme of accepting things as they are, laughing at ourselves a little, and moving forward with the “lessons learned” kept in mind.

A few years ago, one of my grad school cohorts told me I was like an onion – the more you peel me, the more layers you find. I think a blog needs to be like this. The more you read into a blog, the more you get out of it. The more you open yourself to the experiences being shared, the more you can learn from it. And if anything, I think blogs are a fun way to laugh a little, learn new things, and experience life from a shared perspective.

(3) Enjoy this beautifully hilarious photoshop of me as a beauty pageant bitch. Take a good look at it, faithful blog followers … it’s the closest you’ll see this lady to this sort of pomp and stupidity.

… and if you are a blogger, auditions are open until September 17th! Give it a shot!!

In World Peace and Puppies,

B(itch)

Wacky Wednesday: Private Posts, Old Man Hit and Run, and a Bank Confrontation

I’ve got a lot to say today, b(itch)es; and I’ve had a lot of tacos and a lot to drink. Let’s get to it before a barf and/or pass out.

Private Posts

While on my vacation home to my sweet, home Chicago in March, I had lunch on my last day there with my childhood friend Taryn. One of the first things she said to me was that she admired how much I put myself out there on my blog. I remember thinking to myself “WOW!” because I thought everyone thought I was some big asshole for being so open, honest, and (quite frankly) real. And it’s true, I don’t believe in lying or hiding or any of that nonsense that people seem to do all the time. I have no problem sharing with the world who I am because I am comfortable with it. And while I share things about my life that others might not, it’s still the truth and that – I believe – is our utmost responsibility as human beings: to always be honest.

In the years that I have been blogging, I feel like I have done a lot. I’ve posted over 230 posts, the majority of them on humorous observations or satirical social commentaries. I put together a compilation of my “best blogs” from the last year and published it to eBook. I was Freshly Pressed even – a feat I never thought would happen because I’m crude and crass and make up my own swear words that are so offensive sometimes even I cringe when I read them. And I have over 500 faithful blog followers – followers who contact me frequently and say they love what I write. To be clear, I fucking love what they write too. In fact, I can’t wait for my actual book-book to be up and running on eBook because I look forward to the comments and suggestions from you wonderful and terribly talented writers/readers.

I’ve also made a lot of enemies, it would seem. I’ve made an unprecedented number of people mad with my comments about parents that do not vaccinate their kids. One guy emailed me sometime last year and said that he believes me to clearly be a “whore.” And I’ve apparently angered some of my husband’s family and friends for being so honest in my observations and experiences with them as well. Regularly I hear about how so-and-so didn’t like it when I said that my husband did nothing for my birthday, or when I am honest about the fact that he lies to me a lot. Interestingly enough, my husband reads every one of my blogs. Every night he comes home and we talk about them. We talk about it when I say our marriage is a “shit hole” or when I blog about how he lied to me yet again. What’s great about it is that he knows like I know – we are both human. We aren’t perfect, we don’t have delusions about that. It is what it is and that we can talk about it is a lot more than people who hide behind false smiles and “oh, it’ll be fine as long as we have love” and other such bull shit.

But I’ve become increasingly wary of some of the trolling that goes on around my blogsite too. My mother in law is a blog follower, which was very sweet of her; although now it appears that some of the hostility my father in law expresses over his messages might be fueled by some of what I say in my blogs. And today, one of our friends was having a comment thread-conversation on her Facebook about their new system of grocery shopping and cooking, and I commented very nicely commending them for their great compromise and system; and how lucky she is to have a husband who cooks because mine – like most women – never really does anymore. Her husband (my husband’s “friend”) replied quite angrily, though:

…my husband was horrified that someone he thought was his friend would say such a thing. He actually suggested what I did, which is that the guy is off his rocker and nothing but a bully and a troll. And terribly misinformed – we don’t even know where he got some of this, since my husband works one job and sitting on my ass couldn’t be any further than what I do. We have not even spoken with Señor Douchecanoe in years (he isn’t even connected to either of us via Facebook, blog, etc. anymore; we only remain connected to his wife) … so it goes without saying that he was a little out of line.

This incident made me realize, though, that some of my posts have got to go private. I have no problem sharing any of them with my blog family, my friends, or anyone really that requests to read them. Not all my posts will go private; just ones that hit a little too close to home for those with minimal intellectual capacity and ability to understand that not everyone operates the same way they do.

If you are a faithful blog follower, and would like the passcode to the privated posts, email this b(itch) at hchristenas@gmail.com or just request one when you happen to hit on a post that is marked as “private.” I promise I will share; unless of course your name is Hello Kitty Toaster or Señor Douchecanoe.

Old Man Hit and Run

So I almost engaged in an Hit and Run today with an Old Man. We were pulling out of the parking lot at the bank and my phone rang. It was the sheriff’s department, so I thought it appropriate to answer. I was also driving around in a parking lot, really – going from one to another – so I thought it would be OK to do. (PS the sheriff’s department was calling to let me know that the attempted break-in at our apartment this morning – one in a series of attempts at our complex – was not ’emergency’ enough for them to write a report or care.)

So I was pulling from the bank lot into the pizza place lot and this old man about the age of one hundred and ninety four walked in front of my car, leaned on the front hood and started yelling at me to get off the phone.

(1) That guy is not the phone police. Regardless of whether anyone believes it is right or wrong to talk on the phone while driving, it’s my fucking business and I did not hurt a soul. Normally I don’t drive on the phone – but this was in regards to an emergency situation (well, to me … not to the sheriffs); and I was in a fucking empty parking lot.

(2) By contrast, I see people driving around like jack asses on their phones all the time. Again, their and the police department’s business.

(3) Old fucking wrinkle ass leaning on my hood and refusing to move while he screamed at me, quite frankly scared the shit out of me. The guy was nuts! And Pookie started crying hysterically because he scared her too.

(4) I told the sheriff what was going on and he said “… back up and run the guy down … no wait, that was a joke I shouldn’t have made. Are you okay ma’am – do we need to come help?” By then the old wrinkle man had left, us traumatized although forgiving of the cop for not coming to take a report for the attempted break in of our apartment, given his sardonic sense of humor.

 Bank Confrontation

So then we parked our car by the pizza place to have lunch and there happens to be another bank (not mine) in the same lot. We got out of the car, a little shaky from the confrontation with the hundred and ninety four year old man, and all of a sudden a woman came running and literally screaming out of the bank.

Crazy hoe bag : “You can’t park here!!”

B(itch): “I’m sorry …?”

Crazy hoe bag: “This is for bank customers only.”

B(itch): “This is right in front of the restaurant door. The only thing closer is the handicapped spot.”

Crazy hoe bag: “No … this is for bank customers only.”

Pizza joint employee intervening on my behalf: “We OWN this entire lot … you can park wherever you want ma’am.”

Someone, anyone … please elucidate for me just what the hell happened today. It was like a day of wackos … Wacky Wednesday, I’d say. Everyone was out to police others, cut each other down to size, and assert their control over the world – even in the stupidest and most illogical ways. Never a dull moment, faithful blog followers. Never a dull moment.

Lessons on Being Cool From the 22 Year Old Verizon Employees At Chuck E Cheese

So I was at Chuck E. Cheese today, and as if I wasn’t already getting my daily dose of “hell on Earth” just by being there, a pack of about a dozen young adults came sauntering in, where there was a party table set up for them right in front of the stage with the animatronic characters singing Rock the Casbah.

Being the nosy-ass lady that I am, and bored out of my fucking mind while waiting for the 10 billion tokens I purchased to be used, I investigated a little bit. Of course, this meant I had to make every excuse possible to parade around their party in order to get the scoop. I went to “check out” the ticket explosion machine – which I still am not sure what the fuck the thing does. I walked up to “check out” the characters as they moved on to a clean version of “Whip It.” And when the party-goers disbanded to play games while waiting for their pizza, I even marched over to the Dance Dance Revolution to pretend like I was considering playing.

Here is the scoop that I got, what I like to call: Lessons on Being Cool From the 22 Year Old Verizon Employees At Chuck E Cheese:

Lesson #1: If you work at a retail store and the company wants to reward you for your increase in sales, the only cool option is: Chuck E Motherfucking Cheese

Lesson #2: Even though it is the day off for all of you, the coolest thing to wear is your Verizon uniform. For the majority of you, it’s a suit and tie. Many of you wore your Verizon shirt with the logo and all. Some of you added some flair, like your Crips bandana hanging out your back pocket. If wearing a tie, a real cool guy will wear your tie and flip it up over your shoulder. That makes you look at ease.

If you are the only girl in the group, dress like a ho. You never know, one of your coworkers might bang you in the balls.

Lesson #3: The coolest guy at the table, with the most knowledge of this high class establishment, will wear his sunglasses inside. He will keep them on the entire time. The entire time – not even to be removed for games or pizza. He is clearly the coolest of the bunch – follow his lead.

Lesson #4: When the Chuck E. Cheese character comes to the table and starts trying to give you all high fives, make sure you all snap photos to put on your Facebook pages. You are extra cool if you stand behind Chuck E while one of your friends has his photograph taken with the human-sized rat, and dry hump the air.

Lesson #5: If a woman walks by you while you are shredding on Guitar Hero, quickly wipe the sweat off your brow and make sure you turn to her and say “yeah … a bunch of 22 year olds playing Guitar Hero at Chuck E Cheese. I know lame.” Acknowledge your lameness, because irony is in and she might think you are being ironic, thus cool.

Lesson #6: When it is announced over the intercom that your pizza is ready, run to the table. Cool people don’t walk. Cool people do not fucking saunter. Cool people run like they haven’t eaten is years. If you do not run, you may destroy the facade that you are a starving intellectual who lives off pizza and beer and the occasional package of Top Ramen; versus the truth, which is that your mommy made you a nice and wholesome breakfast of french toast and eggs while you changed out of your Spiderman jammie-jams this morning.

Lesson #7: Your Verizon store manager was kind enough to include 20 tokens per employee for this venture – it isn’t just pizza and pictures with Chuck E. A cool person will make sure that he gets his/her 20 tokens under any and all circumstances, even if it means standing up and yelling for everyone to run back to the table because you counted yours and there are only 18.

We left before these numb nuts 22 year old Verizon employees had finished their little party. As we left, I noticed that while they were all off playing video games and taking photos of themselves dry humping the characters placed in miscellaneous places around the restaurant, the Lone Ho had placed certificates of achievement at each of their place settings and a cake in the shape of a pirate ship with a Chuck E Cheese at the mast was being brought to the table.

That – by far – was the most ridiculous thing I have seen in a long time. And you faithful blog followers know I have seen a lot. As we left I looked at my phone and thought to myself “fucking shit, I’m glad I stuck with Sprint.”

This B(itch) is giving away something free…

That’s right, I’m having a giveaway … not a big one, but one nonetheless.

Share this and my blog with your friends for a chance to win a $25 iTunes gift card. It’s really easy to enter and no purchases are required.

Giveaway ends June 30th, 2012 … and all you have to do to enter is leave a comment on this post!

But it can’t be that simple, can it?

No, it isn’t.

1. You must comment on this post. Commenting on a post other than this one will result in no entry.

2. You must comment on the post by June 30th, 2012 at 11:59 pm.

3. Your comment must answer the following question: “what is your favorite thing to b(itch) about?” Those comments not addressing that question will be disqualified.

3. Each individual only gets one entry, so you need not comment multiple times.

4. Anyone can enter, but the only way for you to win is if you include your email address.

5. Winners will be chosen on July 1st, 2012 via Randomizer.com.

GET COMMENTING!!

Now for some completely unrelated crazy bitch:

Sadly, I can no longer go to my local FedEx Kinkos

I’m thinking about getting a map of a fifty mile radius around my home and tacking it up on the wall, then placing pins in all the places I can no longer go. On the map would be the big Ventura post office, for I would be horrified to experience that whole ‘lady and her bizarre flatus‘ thing again. I don’t go to the Starbucks near the Barnes and Noble because a guy I dated works there, and I’d rather not deal with that. Needless to say, I find a lot of sort of stupid reasons not to go to some places around me, and then sometimes I find myself making such a fool out of things that I would rather not return for fear of more humiliation. Today was one of those days.

Although, to be fair, it was really my 69 year old father that added the Ventura FedEx Kinkos to the list of places I can no longer go to.

Let me back it up a bit. You all remember I declared myself on a vacation from life, so to speak, in preparation of my three week, cross-country trip home for the first time in over a decade. Of course, when I say “home” I mean Chicago – I have never and will not consider California to be welcoming enough to call “home.” Both feeling a little homesick, my father and I decided to take this trip together in spite of all the family vacations that turned complete disaster when I was little. So we are only a few days away from departing on what is sure to be an exciting, educational, and likely insane cross-country trip.

The world travelers, years before our current traveling madness.

Because we are traveling as light as possible, though, we ended up having to ship out the majority of our clothing for the time we will be in the Chicagoland area. This really seemed like the easiest and most logical decision, particularly because in addition to clothing we had an assload of souvenirs to take back for friends and family.

So flash forward to today and my 69 year old father in desperate need of a hip replacement decided it was the day that we must take our packed clothes and souvenirs to FedEx to ship. Enter the triad of actions that made it such that I can no longer go to my local FedEx Kinkos:

Incident One: Dad took FedEx employee liberties

So we walked into the store and it was a combination of the Kinkos copy shop and the FedEx shipping center. Behind the counter there were a variety of dollies and rollers that can be used for unloading and loading boxes, and there were two employees working. Rather than ask one of the readily available employees, though, my father just stalked behind the counter as if he works there and took a dolly. I started laughing, the employees started laughing, my dad muttered “whatever” and walked out to the car to load our boxes onto the dolly.

Incident Two: Dad dropped the f-bomb

I handed all the paperwork over to the woman working behind the counter and apologized for my father taking employee liberties, and she giggled and began to input all the information into her computer, and asked me the usual questions about what is being shipped, how we want to ship it all, etc. As we were finishing off all the input of the paperwork, my dad stalked back in with the loaded dolly, looking like he was going to fall over. Remember that I mentioned a few paragraphs up that he is in desperate need of a complete hip replacement – an operation he vehemently opposes. So he was hobbling a little and I was of course wondering why he wouldn’t just let me handle the dolly to begin with (we won’t go there), and he walked up to the counter and said loudly “Jesus, it’s like I’m a fucking stevedore.” Enter more Heather-employee laughter.

Incident Three: Dad announced for the entire Kinkos and FedEx to hear that we are not transporting any illegal goods

For absolutely no reason at all, my father then proceeded to announce loudly to the entire store that we were not transporting any illegal goods. I have no idea why, but for weeks prior he was worried that we were going to get in trouble for shipping California souvenirs to other states, or for sending so many boxes at one time (he said it may seem suspicious). I think my dad has been watching too many Columbo mysteries on television or something, because his paranoia seemed a little odd and out of place. In any event, he felt it necessary to announce loudly that nothing was being shipped illegally, in essence heightening the humiliation factor to a level that was beyond my own level of tolerance. I have a pretty high threshold, but this was just too much. So I said I’d wait in the car and left, laughing and simultaneously covering my shame in the process.

My father is quite clearly just as crazy as I am. When he came out he informed me that his devastating charm secured a smooth shipping of the packages. I’m sure that was it, dad.

You faithful blog followers can now begin betting on what bizarre happenings will take place on this trip. With the whole-family dynamic in place who in God’s name knows what will go down. This FedEx Kinkos incident was only the beginning.