Category Archives: ADVICE

No Complaining Weekend Challenge

NEVER COMPLAIN NEVER EXPLAINThis weekend, challenge yourself to stop complaining.  From Friday to Sunday, every time you start to bitch – stop.  Substitute a positive statement or say nothing.  For some of us, it’s going to be a really quiet weekend. STOP WHINING

 

give it a year

WORKING GIRLProfessionally, the last five years have been difficult for many folks, myself included.  My undergraduate degree in philosophy prepared me to think deep thoughts while working retail, so I went the great fallback route and got a law degree to make my mom happy.  I litigated asses for a few years, hated it, and got swept up in the mass layoffs of 2009.  Shortly thereafter, my mom got terminally ill and I concentrated on seeing her through her last days in dignity.  Facing the brevity of life, I couldn’t go back to my soul-suck of career as a paper-pushing attorney.

So a little over a year ago against everyone’s expectations, I chose to pursue what is essentially a mythical career: a full-time yoga teacher.  I know you are rolling your eyes.  Everyone is a yoga instructor.  I get it.  Judge away.  You think I don’t get my share of jaw drops when I tell people I’m a licensed attorney teaching yoga full time?  Girl, please.  I’m not going to bore you with my credentials because I have nothing to prove, but let’s just say I have quite a bit more training than some eight week program at a local studio.  This decision was not made on a whim, I’ve been practicing and teaching for several years.YOGINI

I bargained with myself that I would give it a year; work hard, take every opportunity to teach, and ride out the financial valleys and peaks of this unpredictable career.  Not everyday was a success story.  I taught long stretches without a day off, on holidays, and subbed constantly.  Soon my income began to reflect my commitment level.  I’m doing exactly what I want to do and I couldn’t be happier.  I was a good attorney, but I’m an exceptional teacher.  I only feel comfortable saying that because I’ve worked hard to make it true (to the tune of 576+classes last year).BIKRAM CHILE

It isn’t too late to do what you want.  Yeah, it may require sacrifice, compromise, and strategic planning.  It will require you to bravely defy expectations, embrace humility, and realign priorities.  When you do get your ass on the golden path towards your soul’s rightful journey, your fate will rise up to meet you as the wind presses you towards your destiny.  Why spend your life slugging through the muddy path of resistance?  NEVERENDING STORYGive it at least a year.  Give it everything you’ve got.  Even if you fail miserably, at least you’ll avoid the tragic regret of abandoned dreams.  The more likely outcome is that you’ll succeed and never look back.FOLLOW YOUR HEART

 

throw the baby shower out with the bath water

KOURTNEY KARDASHIAN BABY SHOWERJust got back from a baby shower.  Said my Hellos.  I stayed 30 minutes because there was nothing for me at this party.  First, it was one of those invite the whole family type showers and I don’t have a kid or husband to reluctantly drag.  The mutual co-worker who was supposed to attend with me cancelled (ugh, 4th time in a row this bitch has bailed on concrete plans).  I showed up with my thick stack of Dr. Suess books elegantly wrapped.  I dropped the present off at the designated table occupied by several medium-sized gift bags.   I greeted the mom-to-be who was dressed in a tight, fuchsia, cotton, ruched tube dress.  She looked like a raspberry.  I told her as much, which in hindsight she may not have appreciated, but I love raspberries so I didn’t intend the comment pejoratively.  Dad-to-be and I chatted for awhile, but I noticed the side-eye of the older ladies when our conversation extended beyond 5 minutes of appropriate small talk.  Who is that predatory single woman circling the dad-in-waiting?  Please.  There are no secret yearnings.  Excuse the blatant bitchery, but if I wanted him I could have him a year ago when we first met and he was drooling all over himself.HOLLY MADISON BABY SHOWER

After I was done talking to the two guests of honor, I wandered around a little bit and introduced myself to a few other folks standing solo.  Nobody seemed very interested in small talk, and it’s not my strength anyway.  When in doubt, hit the buffet, right?  Well you already know that I refer to buffets at barffets and am never in the mood for a group feeding.  This spread was particularly bleak.  Two circular trays of Subway-style sandwiches of dubious origin and questionable content.  The fold-out tables lacked proper placards describing the menu.  Just down from the sandwich wheels where huge bowls of standard potato chips.  Why do people do this?  Put out enough potato chips to feed and army just to watch them soften into stale after the first hour.  Plate of pickles, ok, I get the nod to pregnancy cravings.   A couple of large bowls of mystery potato-salad glop remained untouched.  The beverage options included electric yellow “lemonade” and something that looked like soda.  Not a cupcake in sight.  Killing time with mindless eating would not be an option at this shindig.BABY BUMCAKES

The one activity provided for the children was butcher paper on the tables and crayons.  I made a doodle.  I met a couple kids.  I drank some neon lemonade.  Then I split.  There was nothing left for me.KROY KIM

To that end, if you want people to stay at your baby shower for more than the obligatory 30 minutes, consider the following:

1) With regard to length. 2 hours maximum.  This one was scheduled for a tedious 3.  I like the idea of a short and sweet 90 minutes.

2) Delicious food.  Lots of options.  Baked goods.  Simple non-dressed salads.  Fruit. Cheese. Crudites. Readily available sweets. Warm offerings.  Coffee. Tea. Iced Tea. Water.  I personally prefer an elegant seated brunch.JESSICA SIMPSON

3) Make introductions.  Reign in loners.  Ensure everyone feels included.WIZ AND AMBER

4) Create intimate seating arrangements to encourage eating, drinking, and conversation.EVEYLN LOZADA

5) Designate a separate (but within eyeshot/earshot of helicopter parents) fun space for the kids.MINNIE DRIVER

6) It’s fine if you aren’t into “baby games,” but do provide some sort of entertainment or fun.  Music. Dancing. Karaoke. Ice your own cupcake.  Whatever.  These activities start conversations and save people from dreaded awkward mingling.MINDY WEISS

7) Attentive hosting takes work, the preggo shouldn’t be hosting her own baby shower, but these two did it as a couple.  Designate a host devoted to socially lubricating the shower.  Mothers and mothers-in-law love this job.KRIS AND KOURTNEY KARDASHIAN

 

straw into gold

GONE GIRLI spent nearly a decade in an unfulfilling relationship I knew two weeks in had no real meaningful future.  I can give you justifications and excuses for not leaving – my parents died; I got laid off; I enjoyed the financial security of the union.  That’s all just weak bullshit though.  My therapist likes to say that the universe doesn’t belabor situations, we do.  He’s right.  GOODBYE CHALKRecently, I’ve been kicking it with an extremely attractive man.  He possesses exceptional qualities.  He showed me upfront that he’s a man of principle.  Unfortunately, we are both too damaged to ever make it work.  A decade ago, I would have clung to our magic for dear life, hoping to stoke the flames of compatibility and extinguish the discord.  Now, I know better.  Even though it was hard to let such a pretty thing go, I said goodbye.  I should have said goodbye a month ago when I knew for sure that we couldn’t truly partner, so I guess I still have something to learn with regard to belaboring situations.  That said, progress is progress, and I am proud that instead of squandering a decade, I cut my losses after two months before deeply entangling my heart. AARONI’m just not going to do it, try so hard to make it work.  Rumpelstiltskin was always one of my favorite children’s stories, but I would rather go solo than waste anymore time spinning straw into gold.  STRAW TO GOLD

slut reformation

REALITY BITESI’m taking this new approach to relationships where I wait at least a month before fucking.  Exercising self-restraint can be difficult, but it’s not impossible.  Within a month, most people reveal themselves.  By removing the influence of sex on the early days of a relationship, I can clearly evaluate whether the partnership has legs before my whole heart, soul, and body get tied up in the decision.  I’m not saying I don’t get down to some extent.  The probationary period is a good time to get a bright light look at his junk to make sure there aren’t any areas of concern.  Enjoy a good retro makeout sesh.  Take this time to find out if he’s got any bratty kids, psycho exs, or a shitty credit score.  Use this month to weed out the pigs, weirdos, assholes, morons, and cheapskates.  This is not some purity ring propaganda.  It’s about particularity not prudishness.  I’m a feminist, so do what you will with your vagina, but also think back on your checkered sexual past; when have you regretted NOT having sex with someone?  Exactly.          CHER CLUELESS

I don’t care if you’re in town

LUCILLE DOESN'T CAREAn ex-boyfriend from 18 years ago called my work twice yesterday looking for me.  He insisted on leaving his number with my assistants because he’s in my town for the weekend.  I haven’t talked to this kid in at least 10 years, and we didn’t part well.  I’m not sure what makes him think I want to see him.  He is very accessible on the internet, so if I wanted access to him I could have had it years ago.  I, on the other hand, go out of my way to keep a low profile.  I don’t have a Facebook page.  I clearly don’t want to be found.  I have no interest in catching up with random people who orbit my life with the infrequency of Halley’s Comet.  Furthermore, his approach to the situation tells me that his worst qualities have only ripened with age.  He’s obviously known for quite some time that he would be in town covering a particular event.  A courteous and thoughtful person would have sent an email with a little advance notice.  Instead, he called my place of employment multiple times in one day like some sort of crazed stalker and just assumed I’ll be elated to drop my packed schedule to accommodate his last minute demands.  Selfish much?  That’s why we broke up asshole.  Unfortunately, I’m going to the event on Saturday so there’s a chance we could run into each other….Ugh…I hate ex-boyfriend run-in paranoia.DON'T CALL ME

Demeter Clarc Manners Moment: worry-making

CATHY COMICI know this woman as a friendly acquaintance.  I’ve posted about her before awhile ago.  She’s like a human Cathy Comic.  I liked her though.  I think she’s smart, funny, well-meaning, and enjoyable in small doses.   I’ve extended a number of invitations to her over the last year.  Several months ago, she just stopped responding.  I’m the last holdout on the fucking Facebook, but other friends tried to contact her though her page.  She never responded, despite her FB page showing recent updated activity.  She’s a single woman living alone on my side of town.  Therefore, it’s partially my responsibility to make sure she didn’t die alone, and her cat wasn’t gnawing off her three-day-dead face.  After multiple attempted contacts from a number of sources, finally a co-worker confirmed that Cathy Comic is fine.  No illness.  No tragedy.  Just chronic unresponsiveness.  Well fuck you human Cathy Comic.  Do you know how rude it is to make people worry?  Cathy Comic must be so flush with friends that she doesn’t need any more thoughtful people to care about her.  Well it’s a good thing because I won’t be wasting a moment more of my concern.  I’m recycling that friendship like yesterday’s newspaper.  And don’t come calling when he dumps you.  I don’t want to hear it.  CATHY COMIC BEDIf you are late, call.  If people express concern, respond.  Remember that pit of anxiety that forms when you are worried about someone you love.  Don’t ever recklessly give another that feeling due to your own thoughtlessness and irresponsibility.  It’s fucking rude, and it makes you unworthy of the concern.BYE CATHY

 

Skills for Life: Tiny Cleaning Crew

TINY TOWN BOYLast week, I went on the cutest date with the best man to Tiny TownTiny Town is comprised of a ton of little dollhouses and has a little train you can ride around the modest grounds.  We arrived early before the crowds and commenced our tour of Tiny Town.  As we got toward the back of the colony of dollhouses, I noticed two girls.  The older girl looked about nine years old and the younger one around seven.  They had a bucket and squeegee and were cleaning off the exterior of the tiny houses.  I watched and listened to the diminutive cleaning crew working.  As they cleaned the dirt off the dollhouse windows one by one, I heard the older girl explaining to the younger girl that the water was getting dirty and needed to be changed.  They weren’t complaining, worked together without conflict, and encouraged each other to rally when they got tired.  I was super impressed.  Not only were these girls participating in age-appropriate chores, but the older girl was mentoring the younger girl by teaching her cleaning skills for life.  There was no direct adult supervision, and there didn’t need to be because these two young ladies were clearly raised with a sense of responsibility.  TINY TOWN TWO GIRLSYesterday, during my teeth cleaning, I was listening to my hygienist bitch about her step-children – two girls – ages ten and twelve who are spoiled brats with zero responsibility.  These girls respect no one because they have never been taught respect.  They have no life skills because no one ever taught them how to pick up after themselves.  As a result, the girls are ungrateful and bored because they have no appreciation for responsibility.  Parents who shelter their children from work are doing their kids a great disservice.  Find age-appropriate tasks and teach your children early on that life is a balance between work and fun.  Prepare your children for the reality of life not your fantasy of an ideal childhood.  Teach them self-soothing skills and self-sufficiency, so you don’t end up gifting the world with your useless, lazy, spoiled, entitled, and ungrateful offspring.  Yeah, I sound judgmental, but when it comes to parenting – if you aren’t going to do it right, don’t do it at all. TINY TOWN KID

$$$cushion$$$

MONEY BEDIn the last few weeks, I know six different people who experienced shitty luck with their cars.  Four of those incidents were parked hit and runs.  In three of the four situations, the cowardly assailant didn’t leave a note.  Another girl backed into a pole.  Another lost her keys.  I learned from observing the way these folks weathered their losses.  In the first draft of this post, I was tempted to write that “unexpectedly” shitty things happen in life, but if I’m honest, I do expect shitty things to happen and that’s why I’m often better prepared for them than most people.  I’m not smug; I’m just unrelentingly pessimistic.SUZE ORMAN DENIEDI’m not trying to get all Suze Orman on your ass, but do you have sufficient savings to cushion a crisis should one arise?  A couple of the aforementioned victims make good salaries, but when life turded in their path they panicked and had to borrow money.  I’m willing to loan people money in a pinch.  Though I confess I throw a little side-eye when people who make shit-ton of cash don’t have any sort of emergency stash to weather life’s downturns. PIGGY BANK PONDERSPeople measure security in different ways, but a year’s worth of living expenses in an emergency fund is a reasonable start.  (Calculating in your head?  Double the number. We underestimate spending.)  Should life deal you illness, job loss, or a tornado, a shittymoments fund ensures tragedy isn’t compounded by financial stress.  Once you get your fund established and are enjoying a stress-free stretch of life, some of you will be tempted to blow your safety cash on an extravagant purchase.  DON’T.  Giuseppe Zanottis aren’t that chic when you are living out of your car.CAR HOUSE