Your Guys lil’ Guy- The Six Nicknames You Should Never Use



Trust me ladies, if you’ve used the “I have an excuse” headache too many times this month, there’s a sure way to get out of romantic time with your partner. All you have to do is call your man’s special friend by one of these 6 nicknames. It’s not only sure to kill the mood, it also may send your guy off to therapy!

  1. Speedy Gonzales
  2. Napoleon
  3. Sir Droops-A-Lot
  4. Michael Slowbender
  5. Fetty Not
  6. Lil buddy

Not impressed? Well, I got you on my blog didn’t I? That’s what this list was all about. Getting new readers and testing my theory that low brow sexual references get more hits than articles about Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). I am sure many people would have found my last article, about Laura Hillenbrand’s success despite CFS, inspiring. But when you are exhausted 24/7, you don’t tend to look up random blogs on WordPress.

I’ll admit something, but you have to promise you’ll keep it between us. I have the social media presence of an 85-year old woman living at an assisted living center in Boca Raton. Let me take that back. She probably has more Facebook friends. I am convinced I could post I won the lottery and my friend’s picture of her grilled cheese would get more likes. I am not talking about gourmet grilled cheese either. I am talking Kraft singles and Wonder bread.  Which brings me to today’s blog. I am convinced that talking about sex will make me more interesting.

I know that my attempt at coming up with funny nicknames wasn’t that great. But, you have to admit #4 is clever. If you don’t think so, google “Michael Fassbender junk” and you’ll get the joke. That dude is packing and I am not talking about a gun.

For all those white moms who don’t listen to rap, you may find this link helpful when considering number 5. The song just happens to be my ring tone:

What I don’t get is why can’t I find the official music video online? I’ve never had that issue when searching for Taylor Swift’s videos. You can find that bitch anywhere.

I have changed my view of Taylor over the years. I loved the story of how she wrote Tim McGraw in her high school’s bathroom. She was only 14 at the time. At 14 I was watching the Cosby Show while trying to use a curling iron to straighten my hair. I had no idea Cosby was spiking half his female guest stars drinks at the time. In fact, I am pretty sure I never heard of roofies but it was so long ago, maybe it didn’t exist.  Back then, you had to use chloroform.

Back to Taylor. She annoys me. I think it’s because of her “girl squad” of famous women that surround her everywhere. I know that if she wasn’t famous and rich, half these girls would want nothing to do with her. Taylor’s “OMG- I won!” reaction at every awards’ show has gone from cute and humble to stupid and acted over the years. But, the final “I hate Taylor” moment occurred when she threw a temper tantrum over 3 dancers leaving to join Katy Perry’s tour. Taylor claimed Katy was purposely sabotaging her tour, as if Katy would need to do that. As reported by Business Insider, here is the real story:

Lockhart Brownlie said that he and three other dancers had left Swift mid-tour to work with Perry. This was before the feud had even gone public.

Brownlie told the Examiner that he’d worked on Swift’s Red tour for the first six months. Then, he and two other dancers who’d worked with Perry before heard from her. She wanted to hire them again.

“Obviously, we were with Katy for two and a half years, she’s like family to us, so we were like, ‘Absolutely,'” Brownlie told the Examiner. “We weren’t really dancing in Taylor’s tour anyway so I had got a little bored and I really wanted to do a promo tour.”

At least one of the stolen dancers was still working with Perry when she performed at the Super Bowl Halftime Show — he was the much lauded “right shark,” Celebuzz reports.

Then, Swift released her video for “Bad Blood.”

We already knew the song was most likely about Perry. The music video alluded further to their feud.

In it, Swift and a brown-haired sidekick (played by Selena Gomez) fight off a bunch of bad guys together. Then, after they’ve beaten all of the men, the brunette counterpart turns on Swift. After that, Swift rounds up a girl group consisting of her real-life besties in hopes of exacting revenge.

Okay, had enough of Taylor yet? We’ll get back to our profound discussion about dick nicknames. You know, I really don’t like writing about this stuff but I figured you’d prefer it to posting the new Nutella brownie recipe I plan to try tonight.

I listed the name Napoleon as a “don’t do” because word on the cobblestone street is he’s really short.

But that wasn’t the case. When you convert his reported height from French to International units (yeah-I am pretending I know the difference), Napoleon was 5 foot 7. According to at least one site, the average male height in France was 5 foot 5. Who knew? Still, I am pretty sure your guy will be insulted if you call him Napoleon. Unless he thinks you are referring to him being a conqueror. In that case, you can forget about watching TLC tonight.







The Inspiring Story of Laura Hillenbrand


I don’t know if I have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Sometimes I suspect that I do, like yesterday when I was exhausted from the moment I got up until I went to bed. But, CF fatigue isn’t necessarily the same as fibromyalgia fatigue. While CF is often present with Fibromyalgia, it’s a separate (although sometimes overlapping) disorder.

In order to understand it, I put myself back in high school. I had a particularly serious case of mononucleosis which who knows, may have something to do with my struggles today. I remember that getting out of bed seemed nearly impossible and when I did, say to put on some clothes, I had to immediately rest. When I wanted something from my father, I had to dial my grandmother using the phone in my bed, and asked her to call my dad for me. Mind you, we were in the same 1800 square foot house. However, simply yelling “dad, come here” was overwhelming. I could only muster the energy to whisper into the phone. Thankfully after a difficult 3 weeks, I was able to resume some semblance of normal activity, but it took at least 6 months to return to my normal self.

When I think of those days, I feel sorry for that 17 year old girl, but I can’t help but feel guilty admitting that I do. After all, I knew that I would feel better in a matter of weeks. People with CF have no such expectation. That’s why you may be surprised when I tell you that I find CF inspiring; specifically, Laura Hillenbrand’s 30 year struggle with the disease. There’s no question she has it; CF is an incredibly debilitating struggle for her. One that has left her not only house bound, but room bound.

If the name doesn’t sound familiar, perhaps her books will. Laura has written 2 best sellers that were adapted to successful movies, Seabiscuit: An American Legend and Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience and Redemption. Not only is her work exceptional, she’s done it with the most debilitating fatigue you can imagine. Every day when I think, “I can’t possibly work on my book” I think of Laura and what she has achieved.

Last year I accidentally came across an article about Laura Hillenbrand. It was written in 2010 by Monica Hesse of the Washington Post. I have literally thought of this article every day since. In it, Laura explained that she has gone years without walking beyond the confines of her home. When Laura described her recent wins, she mentioned taking a shower standing up and accompanying her husband to Starbucks. Granted, Laura couldn’t get out of the car when she got there, but after spending years seeing nothing beyond her window, this was a special day.

In 2010, Louis Zamperini of Unbroken fame, was still alive. He told the Washington Post he didn’t know why all his communication with Laura was on the phone. When he learned the true reason, he sent Laura his Purple Heart saying, “You deserve this more than me”.

The article went on to share much more, some of which I included below. You can read the article in its entirety here:


“I have to detach myself completely from aspirations,” Hillenbrand says, discussing how she has learned to cope with her illness. “I hardly ever listen to music anymore because it arouses all of this yearning in me.” She numbs herself to the things she cannot have.

Journalists have liked pointing out the irony of Hillenbrand’s work: A woman for whom walking around the block constitutes a marathon writes about the finest specimens of physical endurance.

It’s not irony, she says. It’s escape. “I’m looking for a way out of here. I can’t have it physically, so I’m going to have it intellectually. It was a beautiful thing to ride Seabiscuit in my imagination. And it’s just fantastic to be there alongside Louie as he’s breaking the NCAA mile record. People at these vigorous moments in their lives – it’s my way of living vicariously.”

Asked to describe, in detail, what exactly the rather blithely name hat exactly the rather blithely named chronic fatigue syndrome feels like, Hillenbrand says, “I got sick when I was 19, and I’d been a really healthy 19-year-old, so I don’t have a lot to compare it to. Does it feel like the pain after you give birth? I don’t know.” There is nauseating vertigo. On bad days, “if the house was burning down, I could not sit up. It’s really a state of acute suffering when you get like that. It’s kind of like pain, but . . . ” she pauses. “I don’t know how to describe it.”

A tremendous love story (Note: A article published in December 2014 indicates Laura and her husband are separated).

They’d met in college at a campus deli, her a sophomore, him a senior. They’d been dating for just five months when Hillenbrand got sick, which happened suddenly and nonsensically, like a book that has had all of its middle pages torn away. First, they and a friend were driving back to Kenyon College after spring break. Then, Hillenbrand could barely move. Food poisoning, doctors said, but it wasn’t.

Eventually Hillenbrand was forced to leave Kenyon College. She relocated to Chicago where her boyfriend had been accepted to graduate school, but while visiting her mother in Maryland she collapsed and knew she’d never be strong enough for the flight back to Illinois. Washington became her default home. She and Flanagan remained apart until he could find a job in the area, at which point Washington became his default home, too.

At this point, I didn’t feel I knew enough about Laura. Before long, I came across a 2014 article in the New York Times titled, “The Unbreakable Laura Hillenbrand”.

I’d like to say this article changed my life, because it taught me anything is possible. While I know that in my mind, getting my body to go along with it can be hard! But, I know now this is a limitation I have. It’s not necessarily something I have to have.

The article is too long and too important for me to summarize here. But I will share with you the most meaningful part of it, in my mind at least. I may not believe I can do anything yet, but after reading this, I certainly know opportunity can be found in the most unlikely places.

Expert from “The Unbreakable Laura Hillenbrand””

It may be tempting to think of Hillenbrand as someone who has triumphed in spite of her illness. The truth is at once more complicated and more interesting. Many of the qualities that make Hillenbrand’s writing distinctive are a direct consequence of her physical limitations. Every writer works differently, but Hillenbrand works more differently than any writer I know of. She has been forced by the illness to develop convoluted workarounds for some of the most basic research tasks, yet her workarounds, in all their strange complexity, deliver many of her greatest advantages. When I asked, for example, how she reads old newspapers on microfilm without traveling to a library, I was stunned to discover that she doesn’t. “I can’t look at microfiche,” she said. “I couldn’t do that even in my good vertigo years.”

Instead, Hillenbrand buys vintage newspapers on eBay and reads them in her living room, as if browsing the morning paper. The first time she tried this, she bought a copy of The New York Times from the week of Aug. 16, 1936. That was the day Seabiscuit’s team — his owner, Charles Howard; his trainer, Tom Smith; and his jockey, Red Pollard — first collaborated at the Detroit Fair Grounds. Hillenbrand told me that when the newspaper arrived, she found herself engrossed in the trivia of the period — the classified ads, the gossip page, the size and tone of headlines. Because she was not hunched over a microfilm viewer in the shimmering fluorescent basement of a research library, she was free to let her eye linger on obscure details.

“There was so much to find,” she said of her reading. “The number-one book was ‘Gone With the Wind,’ the Hindenburg flew over Manhattan with a swastika on it and Roosevelt made a speech saying America would never become involved in foreign wars.” Soon she bought another newspaper, and then another. “I wanted to start to feel like I was living in the ’30s,” she said. That elemental sense of daily life seeps into the book in ways too subtle and myriad to count.

It was in those vintage newspapers that Hillenbrand discovered her next book. “I happened to turn over a clipping about Seabiscuit,” she said. “On the other side of that page, directly the opposite side of the page, was an article on Louie Zamperini, this running phenom.” Hillenbrand had no idea what became of Zamperini in the years to come, as the war broke out and young men gathered on Hamilton Field near San Francisco to fly B-24 bombers across the Pacific, but something about the young runner caught her attention. Maybe it was the mischievous look in his eye or the way he tipped forward when he ran, as if falling toward the finish line. Maybe it was the way, as she would later write, “his ears leaned sidelong off his head like holstered pistols, and above them waved a calamity of black hair.” Whatever it was, Hillenbrand jotted Zamperini’s name in her research notebook on Seabiscuit and promised herself, “I’ve got to find this guy when I’m done.”

I’ll leave you with a quote from Laura H. It’s from her interview with Elle magazine in 2010 and explains why she loves writing. It also mentions her husband, which of course is bitter-sweet since they’ve separated. Maybe the rest of their story is yet to be written…

“I’m dealing with things that frighten me and with moments that are really miserable,” Hillenbrand said when we met. “But overall I feel happy in a way that can’t be shaken. A great deal of that is him”—she flicked a smile toward Flanagan. “And a great deal is the writing, because it’s the one way in which what I am in my essence can be realized. Everything else has been ­compromised, but I found a way to be who I really am on the page in a way I can’t be in my living-life, and that has made me really, deeply happy.”

And that my friends, is what I call an inspiring story.

Northville Mom









The Real Story Behind Masters of Sex

The real Masters and Johnson don’t quite look like Lizzy Caplan and Michael Sheen, who play them on T.V.

If you’ve read my blog before, you are aware of my obsession with non-fiction books from the library. If you are going to have a vice, free books, chocolate and diet coke aren’t the worst ones you can have. Unless you have one of those trainers from an extreme weight loss show. They’d have some issues with me I’m sure.

I recently borrowed the book, “The Life & Times of William Masters and Virginia Johnson”, by Thomas Maier. It is the basis for Showtime’s original series, Masters of Sex. My initial interest in the series was based on my knowledge it took place in St. Louis. As a native, I love the references on the show, but wondered why they called the Chase Park Plaza the Chancery Park Plaza. As I got more into the series, I wondered what other facts were changed. My search led me to Thomas Maier’s book.

One of the things I loved most about reading is learning how societal views and customs changed over time. Maier’s book was a wonderful window into our repressed sexual views in the 50’s and 60’s. I almost fell on the floor however, when I began reading numerous quotes from someone I actually knew! Dr. Ira Gall was the OB/GYN that delivered me and served as my doctor until I moved to Michigan in the 90’s. He was my mom’s doctor for close to 40 years and was truly a wonderful man. I remember when my dad died suddenly of a heart attack, when I was 22,  I called his office inquiring if he could prescribe sleeping pills. He could have easily just called something in but instead he personally expressed his condolences and called my mother several weeks later to see how she was doing. Dr. Gall’s demeanor was incredible and I will always be grateful to him. He passed away in 2013 at the age of 84. He was a major benefactor of Washington University and the Holocaust Museum and also founded Medicine Shoppe Pharmacy, which is located throughout the country.

gall Dr. Gall had a practice in Creve Coeur MO for  over 50 years.

Unbeknownst to me. Dr. Gall worked with William Masters at Washington University and was close friends with Virginia Johnson, who he carpooled to work with! It was great to hear his voice again through the pages of Maier’s book.

As I kept reading, I was confused why the series creators changed so many of the details of Masters & Johnson’s story. Some of the changes made sense, who wants to see Master’s first wife Libby staying home alone when you can have her cheating with new characters? But other changes made less sense. For example, Masters encouraged his wife, Libby, to take the kids to Northern Michigan each summer while he moved Johnson into his home and essentially played house. Why not show that? The show also talked about Master’s late father and how abusive he was as a result of his alcoholism. In truth, he had a brain tumor that may have significantly altered his behavior. The series also indicates that Masters turned down Playboy’s request that he produce articles for the magazine in exchange for funding.  Masters actually didn’t turn this down and both he and Virginia stayed at the mansion in separate rooms, a sham Hefner saw through immediately.

There are many more examples of liberties taken by the Showtime creators, but the one that troubles me the most is the romanticizing of M & Johnson’s relationship. He virtually harassed her into having sex with him for “research”, something she wasn’t interested in doing but felt she had no other choice if she wanted to keep her job. Eventually she was more of a willing participant, but feelings of deep love were never really there, even when Masters left his wife Libby after 30 years of marriage. It was more of a business relationship based on Masters not wanting Johnson to marry another man. She was getting serious with a perfume executive, as depicted on the show, prompting Masters to leave his wife and children. Many of their mutual friends would have anything to do with Masters after that, can you blame them?

The most surprising part of the book was the backwards view Masters had of homosexuality and the book he published claiming up to an 80% conversion success rate with vetted candidates. Although Masters earlier works were carefully documented and scientifically sound, it is widely believed that this information was falsified or at the least exaggerated. The claim that homosexuality is a learned behavior or choice proved problematic to the gay community, setting back their cause for years. It was disappointing to see that Masters published such damaging work.  Johnson and his other colleagues were highly against the conclusions drawn and begged him to make revisions.

Although the series claims Johnson eventually went back and got her BS in Psychology, she never actually obtained her college degree. However, Masters often referred to her as a psychologist and neither corrected people when they called Johnson “doctor”. There were many people that were amazed at the latitude Masters allowed Johnson, considering her lack of technical training and education. However, the fact she was sleeping with the guy probably didn’t hurt. You saw the picture, right? She deserved to run a foundation after that.

I don’t want to give the whole book away, so I will stop here and tell you this. I found myself reading only the first sentence of certain paragraphs because the book was boring in places. If you like understanding historical norms and are a fan of the series, you will enjoy reading the book. If you don’t feel that description fits you, I’d read David Spade’s book instead, with a diet coke and M&M’s of course.

Michael-Sheen-arrived-Lizzy-Caplan-his-sideThe fictional William Masters and Virginia Johnson


Thinking About Tomorrow


Tomorrow marks the one year anniversary of an extremely difficult day in my life.I don’t think it’s important to say what happened, because let’s face it. We’ve all had difficult days in our lives and even years later, these days are hard to think about.

The pain I felt that day is still there, it’s just not as sharp as it once was. When something unexpected happens, just being able to accept the reality of “what is” can be extremely difficult.It’s overwhelming to realize your perspective, your trust and your sense of security was nothing more than an illusion.You try to find reason and hope in the days that follow, but it’s hard. Really hard. The world as you knew no longer exists. The people you called friends may not be there at all. Through that, you are expected to move on and be the person you always were. When you no longer look at the world the same way, that person may be hard to find. If you want to find them at all.

When you experience loss, whether it’s your health, the death of a loved one, the end of a relationship or your career, you learn things. Like, who really cares about you. Unlike Maid in Manhattan, the guy running for Senator isn’t always okay with you wearing Natasha Richardson’s clothes*. When you role changes your relationships do not always follow. Ask any divorced couple and they will tell you there are “his friends” and “her friends”, no matter how many dinners you shared together. With time, you realize the people you lost may be the most difficult part of your transition. But then you say to yourself, F them. They weren’t my friends at all. But, you also get mad at yourself for not realizing this sooner. Like, before you bought their $150 wedding gift and poured your heart out to them.

When you lose something important you suddenly have permission to drop the bravado and focus on what truly matters. You are no longer too busy to think about what you really want to do with your life. This is what people call “the silver lining”. The problem is that when you figure out what you want to do, it’s not always easy. Fragile self-esteem and grief make these failed starts even more difficult. But with perseverance you may find yourself on the other side, thankful for what life has thrown at you. I am not there yet, but I am getting there. It’s a road that has been traveled by many people much less fortunate than me. Ones that would relish the opportunity to be in my position. Writing a blog while they are home with their kids, living in a nice house with 3 crazy cats shedding all over the place. As you can tell, I am trying to cheer myself up and doing that thing called “putting things in perspective”. I am sure you’ve been told to do that before. This is when Rocky Road Ice Cream comes in handy. Unless you are a diabetic, in which case you still eat it but skip the marshmallow cream sauce.

Did I experience “silver lining” in my life this past year? Yes. I am grateful for the time I’ve had with my kids, to write, to rest (I have fibromyalgia, so this is important). But, this doesn’t take away the feelings I had 1 year ago today. They are still there, but they speak more quietly to me. With time, I hope I won’t hear them at all. Because what matters is my opinion of myself, no one else’s. It’s just easier to say than to believe sometimes.

Explanation of my Natasha Richardson reference:

*If you haven’t seen Maid in Manhattan I am pretty sure you’ve never had cable. J-LO tries on a rich lady’s clothes when cleaning her room. Cute guy sees her in the clothes and thinks she’s a guest at the hotel. They fall in love, but guy doesn’t know J-LO is a maid. They fight when he finds out, but they end up together. I am pretty sure the bitch isn’t a maid after that.

Does This Look Like Trash To You?


I wasn’t going to post today because I somehow got talked into hosting a party for (7) 10th grade girls. The idea of ordering pizza and calling it a day just isn’t me. Of course, I want to give them the best spread ever, which sounded good 5 days before hand but not so much on the day you have to actually cook it.

But, how can I ignore the fact that my neighbors think it’s okay to put nice pieces of furniture, such as a book case and a desk, on the curb to warp in the elements? There’s something inherently wrong with you deciding to do that rather than call Goodwill, who will gladly pick up your items for free.

I don’t know if they thought the trash men, who came by yesterday, have an extra UHAUL trailing them, just in case there’s a freebie like this. Or, if they thought a neighbor would fall in love and they were being kind by leaving it out for them. Regardless, their stuff has sat out there overnight and now instead of helping someone in need it’s getting more damaged by the hour.

Only a couple weeks ago I noticed a large sofa and matching chair languishing in the snow for well over a week. Not at the same house, but nearby. Every time I passed I told myself I need to write an anonymous note asking why they chose not to call one of the many charities who would gladly put it to  use. I never did that, but I think I will in this case.

I will be making my weekly trip to the library tomorrow. I’ve been binge watching Masters of Sex and requested the biography the series was based on. I hope I don’t see anymore furniture sitting outside on my way there.


Modern Romance

azizShe broke up with me. Didn’t really tell me why. Luckily when you’re the guy, you can just tell people she’s crazy. ‘Hey, Tom, I heard you and Lucy broke up.’ ‘Yeah, man. Turns out, she’s crazy.’ That’s what they always do on Entourage.” – Aziz Ansari

I got married just a few weeks after my 22nd birthday. Although my parents weren’t concerned, several people questioned my age and asked if “I was sure”. Considering we dated 4 years and both finished our degrees I felt this was a ridiculous question. Of course I was ready! Sure, the lady at the bridal store thought I was a pregnant teen bride the first time she met me. But, she was wrong. I didn’t have kids for several more years and 20+ years later, we’re still together. We even like each other some of the time.

We met in the most romantic of places. The Junior’s Department at Famous-Barr (now Macy’s). Within 3 months we talked about getting married when I graduated and we did. It was a considerably different experience than it would be today. For one, Rich had to call me, on a home phone my parents may answer. If we wanted to talk, we couldn’t text, e-mail or tweet each other; we were back to phone calls. If I wanted to show my friends a picture of the guy I was dating I had to drop off 35 millimeter film at the store, wait a few days, and then pick up the printed picture.

I only knew one friend who met her significant other through an ad. She put it in a newspaper, which was the custom of the day, and didn’t admit how they really met until a long time after. There was stigma to the process. Now, more than 1/3 of married people met their partner through online dating sources. I say “more” because we know 1/3 met this way in 2005-2012. You can imagine how much higher the percentage is today.

Aziz Ansari’s book Modern Romance taught me that and many other things about dating. It was shocking the large percentage of people who married someone within a block of their childhood home the middle of the 20th century. How people chose their ideal partner and the length of time they dated has radically changed in the last 40 years. It used to be you’d look for someone through family connections and if you got along and were mildly attracted to them, you got married within a matter of months. The idea of finding your soul mate and dating for years just wasn’t the norm. Let’s face it, the pool you had to chose from was much smaller without okcupid and If you were too picky, you’d run out of people to date rather quickly.

Modern Romance is a delightful delve into 20th century sociology. I find it fascinating to read about past social customs and if you do as well, Modern Romance will be an enjoyable read for you. I also learned a great deal about the world my children will be facing when they begin dating. Aziz helped me understand how things have changed and the mindset of today’s emerging adults, something I thought I knew but I really didn’t. If you are like me and haven’t dated for many years, this is a great educational tool that will help you relate to your kids, or your single friends, as they swipe right and break-up by text.  And, if you are in the single world yourself, there are some great tips for how to leverage dating sites and avoid first text rejection. Hint: Suggest a fun thing you can do together rather quickly rather than a series of “wsup” texts.

Modern Romance is more scientific than I expected, with study references and graphs, but it’s easy to understand and framed with Aziz’s humorous commentary. You will get some insight into Aziz’s personal life and his affinity for ramen noodles, but don’t expect a biography. I will say I found the book much more interesting at the beginning and skipped some portions towards the end. It was likely because the book was no longer talking about 20th century dating customs, which is what I found the most interesting.

The best part of Modern Romance? You can find it at your library. Well, not at the Northville Library yet. I still have it checked out.

One more thing, if you like my blog I could really use some help. I have a hard time motivating myself to write. I feel like no one really cares what I have to say. Sad right? Well, based on my social media presence it’s a reasonable assumption but I am trying to push past the self-doubt. So, if you don’t mind helping Northville Mom please share my blog with your friends, subscribe if you don’t, and like me on Facebook (if we’re friends). I really could use your support.


Northville Mom & her daughter, Kayla, at our favorite place to vacation. Walt Disney World. Here, we’re touring the World Showcase area of Epcot and just finished enjoying a dancing dragon show in China. I am pretty sure this Dragon can be found on Tinder.


Almost Interesting


I drink an alarming amount of Diet Doctor Pepper and read non-fiction books. That’s pretty much what I am about lately, other than trying to resist the urge to post stories about my cats.

One thing you can’t say is I am spending too much money buying books. That’s because everything I read comes from the public library which is insanely cool. You go to a web site, put in what book you want, and they’ll ship it to your local library; often within a couple days. Just don’t drop coffee on the book because the library is a real bitch to deal with when that happens.

It drives my husband crazy that I read so much, but there are advantages to it. My cognitive abilities are likely staying at the level they were when I worked full-time. At least one study has confirmed that activities like reading lower the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease by as much as 47%. Considering I have type 2 Diabetes, I need every edge I can get.

Regardless, the fact is I read, and there’s probably no end to it since it’s something I’ve done since childhood. I fondly remember going to the library with my dad during my teenage years. He’d check out Word War II books and I’d read about unexplained mysteries and aliens. #roswell1947.   I also checked out Cosmopolitan Magazine and learned a whole lot about sex, but that’s another story.

My book of choice now is biographies, which there is an endless supply of. The one I read most recently was “David Spade is Almost Famous”. I was always a Spade fan, but it went to the next level in 2013 when we encountered David at the Scottsdale, AZ Target. My daughter excitedly ran over to me saying, “The guy from Grownups is over there!” Considering this is the same girl who claimed she saw Snoop Dog driving a car within 1 hour of arriving in Los Angeles, I was suspicious. But, due to her insistence I followed her and sure enough there was David. He was talking on his cell phone with his unmistakable voice, with his face shielded by a lowered baseball cap. I wanted more than anything to say, “SELFIE time!” but I just couldn’t do it. Not because I was shy, but because it seemed wrong to interrupt his attempt at being a normal guy shopping at Target. So, I just stared at him for a moment before quietly walking away, wondering if this was my one chance to call the TMZ tip line.

Since my husband didn’t contact TMZ when he saw Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake at the Hotel Bel Air, when they were supposedly not together, I couldn’t justify calling in Spade. I was just too cool to be that person. As luck would have it, when we were ready to check out David was too, and we walked out to the parking lot together albeit in different aisles. My 10 year old son was beside himself with awe and kept pointing at David, who was power walking to his car at increasing speed. The best part, it was an older model Honda! Since David’s mom lives nearby and it was the day after Easter, we assumed he was simply borrowing mom’s car during a holiday visit. And there my friends, is my brush with greatness.

David’s book was an easy read, which I appreciated after a series of books that required re-reading of passages and googling the definition of obscure “fancy” words.  I was surprised to learn that David was a gifted student, studying 2 grades ahead in certain subjects. Like many successful comics, David struggled to get a sketch on Saturday Night Live and felt he was on the verge of being fired every season. Eventually though, David enjoyed success, starting with the “Hollywood Minute”. I enjoyed reading the story behind this skit and other’s such as Down by the River with Chris Farley, Gap Girls with Adam Sandler and Bastard Airlines, “Bye-Bye”. David also went into detail regarding the filming of Tommy Boy and Black Sheep. I never appreciated Chris Farley’s talent until reading David’s book, nor did I appreciate David’s.  I spent a lot of time on Youtube as I read through the book, wanting to see every detail described. It’s amazing how quickly you can be brought to another time in your life through this exercise. I was young and thin for just a few more minutes, thanks David Spade!

Although David detailed his early childhood he didn’t get much into his adult life other than his relationship with Farley. I am sure that will come with time. David’s dad was absent most of his life and did not support his family. His mom was married to a man for several years that acted as a father figure and stabilized their finances, but this too was not meant to last. David however, had a strong and loving relationship with his mother and 2 older brothers. Still, due to their economic situation, David said he had a lot of Joe Dirt “like experiences”.  David’s mother also loved giving the boys photo gifts. One what a t-shirt given to David with his own photo in the top right hand corner of his shirt. Let’s just say the kids had a fun time with that.

I could go on for hours here, but I won’t. Get the book. You’ll like it.


In honor of Chris Farley and Tommy Boy, I will leave you with a quote:

“What my associate is trying to say is that, uh, our new brake pads are really cool. You’re not even going to believe it. Like, um, let’s say you’re driving along the road with your family. And you’re driving along la li la. And then, all of the sudden there’s a truck tire in the middle of the road. And you hit the brakes. Err! Whoa, that was close. Now let’s see what happens when you’re driving with the ‘other guy’s’ brake pads. You’re driving along. You’re driving along and all of the sudden the kids are yelling from the backseat, ‘I got to go to the bathroom, daddy!’, ‘Not now, damn it!’, truck tire, eeeee, ‘I can’t stop!’. Help! There’s a cliff! Aah! And your family’s screaming ‘Oh my god, we’re burning alive!’ ‘No! I can’t feel my legs!’. In comes the meat wagon. And the medic gets out and says, ‘Oh, my god.’. New guy’s in the corner puking his guts out. All because… you want to save a couple of extra pennies. To me, it doesn’t…”

Tommy Boy grossed 32.7 million dollars at the box office.