March 26, 2012

Random bits

Super interesting article (really!) about cookbook ghostwriting

Lately I've been giving the Pirates horsey rides up and down the hall. Will neighs like a horse when he is on the ground (following me on all fours) but when he's on my back he moos, insisting I'm a cow. I'm not sure if I should be offended.

Here's what happens when a 35-year-old man retakes the SATs on a dare.

By a sheer miracle (and Ben's parents graciously watching the boys), we went to see a movie over the weekend for the first time in...I don't actually know how long. When did Toy Story 3 come out? Naturally, we saw The Hunger Games. Awesomesauce.

As a child, I was - and still am - a huge fairytale fan. The Princess on the Glass Hill was always my favorite, and it's odd to me that so few people are familiar with it. Anyway, you might be able to imagine how stoked I was to find out that 500 new fairytales have been discovered in Germany!

March 20, 2012

Right now

I look like this...

[drawing by Allie - anyone know when her book is coming out, by the way?]

..thanks to the group assignment my professor cruelly gave us this semester.

I may actually murder someone in a righteous rage before this is over.

March 15, 2012

Still here

School assignments.

Sick kid.

Piles of laundry that make my living room look like something out of Hoarders.

The usual.

March 8, 2012


For everyone freaked out by Australian spiders (which is basically anyone in their right mind), here's a special news headline: Thousands of Spiders Blanket Australian Farm After Escaping Flood.

See all that snow on the ground? Yeah. It's actually SPIDERWEBS. 
[photo: Daniel Munoz/Reuters]

This is happening a mere 3.5 hour drive from my house, by the way.

Effing spiders, man.

P.S. If you're a real glutton for punishment, there are additional photos here. *shudder*

March 7, 2012

Destroying the planet, one load of laundry at a time

This morning I accidentally locked one of our cats in our bedroom. Naturally, he retaliated by leaving a massive pile of cat crap on the bed, and cleverly walking while he pooed in order to deposit a sizeable amount on my pajamas as well.

The cat and I were both disgruntled, but agreed to move past our feelings and cope with the fallout - him by stalking butterflies outside, and me by immediately stripping all linens within a 20 foot radius and washing them. Unfortunately, that's also when I realized we were out of laundry detergent.

I drove to the store and stalked down the aisles, thinking nasty thoughts about cats who elect to crap on beds instead of politely offering a civilized meow to let someone know they were trapped in a room. And then I saw it: the Super Amazing Awesome Environmentally Friendly Laundry Detergent, guaranteed not to harm any whales or soybeans or what have you, on sale for half price.

I try to use green methods to clean most of the house (lots of vinegar and baking soda, that sort of thing), but when it comes to laundry detergent I let my wallet get the best of me and buy a cheaper, less eco-friendly product. But today the sale price - and the warm glow accompanying my decision to be A Friend of Nature - lured me in, and I proudly marched a box down to the cashier.

When I arrived home, I sauntered to the washing machine, still aglow with warm thoughts of my environmental friendliness. Statues would doubtlessly be erected in my honor for my war on pollution. I popped open the box and shook it around a little, idly looking for the measuring cup that would help me dispense the powdered wonder I held in my hands. When it didn't seem likely to rise to the surface, I shook the box a little more vigorously until a teensy weensy phrase on the side of the packaging caught my eye, telling me that measuring cups were for wasteful, planet destroying bastards and therefore not included. I was a trifle miffed but could concede their point, and thus I scooped the correct amount of detergent into the dispenser with a tablespoon and went on my eco-friendly way.

An hour or so later, I unloaded the finished washer and popped open the dispenser to fill it up for a second load. And there it was. The Super Awesome Planet Friendly Soap. Still in the dispenser. Puzzled, I poked it with a finger, only to discover it had hardened into a soapy cement. Cursing, I spent five minutes chipping it out before reexamining the directions on the box. Aha - for front loaders, they recommended measuring the soap into the dispenser, then pouring half a cup of hot water onto it to help it dissolve. Mildly annoying, but I can live with an extra step if it means continually basking in the glow of my green powered awesomeness.

I obediently followed the directions, only to discover that the detergent took on its cement-like qualities the instant it was touched by the water, making it pointless to even start the machine. Cue round two of chipping. By this time I was thoroughly aggravated, but my resolve had hardened into a vicious determination to win against The Eco-Friendly Soap From Hell and I wasn't giving up.

For round three, I dug around in the kitchen until I found a small plastic container I didn't mind sacrificing to the cause, then measured out the detergent and poured in some boiling water, giving it a bit of a swirl to kick off the dissolving process. This mostly worked, but I noticed some of the detergent was stuck to the bottom of the cup. And then, because I am The World's Biggest Idiot in addition to being A Friend of Nature, I absentmindedly stuck my finger in the cup to swish the detergent around.

Here's a little tip for those of you playing at home: don't put your finger in a cup of recently boiled water. Not good.

Still, I had finally dissolved the detergent and was damn well going to use it, so muttering pirate-themed curses under my breath and gingerly holding out my scalded finger, I poured the goo into the dispenser. Success was mine! Almost, anyway. The detergent had started separating almost the minute I stopped swirling, and the thicker parts clung to the dispenser, inviting yet another round of chipping fun.

And this is why I will continue using Satan's Laundry Detergent of Environmental Evilness, and the planet can suck it.

The end.

March 5, 2012

Five things

It's been raining for the past four days, which means I chucked my "no TV before 2 years old" rule out the window and entertained the Pirates with Sesame Street clips on YouTube. It is truly frightening how fast a toddler who barely speaks 30 words can learn to say "Elmo". 

Speaking of vocabularies, I know approximately 50,045 words. At least, that's what Word Dynamo says.

If you enjoy Parks and Rec, you might like this Ron Swanson children's book cover, ala Dr Seuss. I want some bacon now.

Also on my want list: visiting the 20 most beautiful bookstores in the world. That converted cinema in Argentina is AMAZING, and I'm hitting up The Last Bookstore the next time we go to LA for sure.

It's only a week and a half into the new semester and I already need more procrastination aids. Hit me up with things to read/watch/make/eat below!
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