Category Archives: Don’t Get Me Wrong

What were they thinking?

These news articles that I found this week were too dunce-cap-worthy not to share.   In no particular order, here are a few people who make me feel smarter.

Did you see the one of the bodybuilder who didn’t bronze every part of his body?  The effect is a little disturbing.  It looks like a digital photo editing nightmare.  Nope, that’s his head with his natural skin color. He must have had a good reason to forget his head.

How about the pre-school teacher in South Africa who played a few rounds of “how many preschoolers can I squeeze into my tiny car?”  Are these kids circus clowns?  Not only did she shuttle her 31 students from the school to a mall restaurant playground in multiple trips, but she also left them unattended on the playground between driving shifts (I’m assuming that’s the case because no other adult was reported to be with her).  When police caught up with her, they found 11 of the children in the back seat and 6 in the hatch.  Her traffic ticket was for $170.  Because they didn’t witness the other trips, she wasn’t charged.  As a parent, I think I’d have some choice words for her.

A more appropriate mode of transportation
Photo by Kristen Lamb via WANA Commons

I don’t have a lot to say about this guy–other than to point out the obvious.  When you’re in an airport, you do not, under any circumstance, joke about bombs or guns.  It’s true.  A NCAA hockey referee did just that when he “flirted” with an airline employee.  He wasn’t allowed on the plane after that.  Detainment and missed work are his prize for all his “wit.”

And now for something really different: #ROW80 Goals

  • The front garden is planted with carrots, lettuce, and spinach.  Woohoo!  Now to start working on the back beds to get ready for more planting.  My older daughter requested lots of kale today.  We love kale chips.
  • Work out and eat better.  Most importantly, know that food does not have control over me and does not define me.
  • I wrote 4,000 words and got a lot of great research done this weekend.  I’m hoping to do more than that next weekend (more solitude to write–don’t get two weekends in a row very often!).
  • Blogging class and logline class are in full swing.  I’m learning a ton!  Finish my homework this week.

What were they thinking?

Every once in awhile I come across these gems of crazy things people do.  Sometimes I have to share because, well, I can’t make these things up!

Let’s Go for a Swim

This one is from earlier this summer, but it’s too good not to include it.

An English man vacationing in France got very excited about the Summer Olympics swimming competitions.  It’s not uncommon for people who are enthustiastic about a sport to participate.  Perhaps they have dreams of joining an Olympic team in the future.  Perhaps they just have fun doing the sport.  Perhaps they need assistance when they decide to swim from the south of France to the United States.

Spontaneously.  No planning.  No thought of the actual distance across the Atlantic Ocean.  I don’t care how good a swimmer he thought he was.  Did he really think he could swim 3,594.69 miles across the Atlantic Ocean?  He survived and was towed back to shore from a dingy.  How appropriate.

Let’s Go Feed the Tigers

That tiger sure was bigger than I thought!

A trip to the zoo is always fun.  You can look at the animals, watch them get fed, and ride a train that travels around the exhibits.  Or, you can do all of those things with the added adventure of jumping from the moving zoo train into the tiger exhibit where you can feed the tiger yourself.  No, wait, do not try that last one.

The Bronx Zoo zookeepers used fire extinguishers to get the tiger to leave his lunch the mauled man alone.  The man survived and was in stable condition when the news story was released.  What was he thinking (the report doesn’t say)?  The poor tiger is probably traumatized now.  I’m glad they didn’t have to hurt the tiger.

Let’s Take a Ride

A man was caught trying to sneak into Spain with help from two other men.  People have tried numerous things to smuggle themselves into other countries.  This one chose to ride as the passenger seat.  Yes, you read that right — as the passenger seat.

They took the seat apart until there was only the frame.  The man sat inside the frame with the upholstery as a disguise.  One of the smugglers sat on him as if he were a real carseat.  A border guard happened to touch skin instead of fabric when he put his hand on the seat.  No word on what the seatman’s thoughts were other than, “We would have gotten away with it if it weren’t for those meddling kids.”   He might have thought it.

The man should have saved the carseat disguise for Halloween instead of a border crossing.  I hope his seat buddy wasn’t too heavy. I’m sure there’s another joke in there somewhere…

What do you think about these crazy stunts?  Do you have any jokes to add?  Have you seen other crazy stuff and wondered, “What were they thinking?”  Do share.  🙂

I Have Superpowers…or Not

Would you believe me if I told you that I have superpowers?  It would be fun to teleport myself anywhere, be invisible, or talk to sea creatures.

For the most part, when a person claims to have super abilities, everyone else understands that there is imagination at work.  You might even play along, but you wouldn’t believe my claims.

So, when was it not a good idea to claim to have superpowers at the risk someone would take you seriously?

The 16th Century was a terrible time to tell people that you were superpowerful, especially if you were a Spanish priest. Duh.

Pedro Ruiz Calderón was a priest in Mexico City and claimed that he was able to:

  • Teleport great distances (to other continents very quickly)
  • Be invisible (so he could seduce women)
  • Predict the future
  • Discover buried treasure
  • Summon and exorcise demons

By Lynn Kelley Author via WANA Commons

Wow, that’s quite a repetoire.  He also bragged that he met the devil in hell where he acquired some of his abilities.  The devil autographed at least one book for him while he was there, although that tome was not found in his library.  Imagine that.

His motivations seemed to be money and women.  He did find treasure and was paid to help others find lost things.  He bragged about seducing many, many women, which means he probably didn’t.

The shocking thing is that he never performed any of his powers for the inquistors at his trial.  What’s more, he didn’t use his teleportation power to escape prison, nor did he use it to travel back to Spain when he was exiled there as punishment.  He could have saved his government the time and cost of shipping him across the Atlantic Ocean.

He got off with a light sentence considering how many people were tortured and killed in the Spanish Inquisition.  Perhaps he did use his superpowers on the inquisitors (or paid them with gold), and no one knows what happened to him when he returned to Spain.  Perhaps the Spanish Inquisition picked him up there.

Just for fun, here’s a link to Monty Python’s “The Spanish Inquisition” sketch on YouTube.

If you had superpowers, would you brag about them or keep them secret?  Would the lure of money be enough motivation for you to make up special skills or abilities?  I’d love to hear from you.

Are You a Lumper or a Separater?

Since most people can’t afford to buy new clothes everyday, laundry is a necessary chore.  Here at Mermaids Don’t Do Windows, the clothes, sheets, and towels do have to get washed.  Until a laundry fairy starts doing ours, somebody has to do it.

The Husband rarely does laundry.  I banned him for life shortly after we got married.  His idea of washing everything in hot water didn’t sit well with the few nice things that I owned at the time.  I’m sure it was his evil master plan to get out doing of laundry altogether.

Daughter 1 does most of her own laundry, but she can’t sort colors to save her life.  She puts bright colors in the whites all the time.  “I didn’t know which basket to put those in.”  Drives me crazy.  If I’m feeling generous, I’ll throw her clothes in with the rest, but she has to put them away.  It’s not my problem if she can’t find something or her clothes are dirty.  She is 14.

Daughter 2 is too short to reach the controls.  When she’s tall enough and/or pushes me over the edge about how her clothes are done, then she’ll be assimilated, too.  For now, she helps with simple tasks.

The other day, a friend asked me to choose between my washer or dryer.  She did not just ask me to choose which child to keep, did she?

I know that the appliances aren’t children, but don’t ask me to choose.  They get sold in matching sets for a reason.  The Maytags I have now are the first matching set I’ve ever owned.  When we got them several years ago, we called them the Rolls Royce and Bentley.  They even have luxury features (the sales guy sold them to my husband with promises of wrinkle release settings).  I’m not choosing between them.

Every once in a while, someone will complain about the wrinkles.  Wrinkles?  No, those are dryer laugh lines.  I’ve tried to get shirts out when damp and warm, but the wrinkle fairies live in the dryer (and they probably eat socks when they get hungry).  Wrinkle release spray is my only hope of defeating them until the laundry fairies arrive.  I thought that the wrinkle prevent setting on the Rolls Royce and wrinkle release settings on the Bentley were supposed eliminate my wrinkle problems.

What?  Use an iron?  *scoffs*  Mermaids don’t iron.  Heck, my iron is the same one I had in college.  It has my maiden name written on the bottom in permanent marker and black electrical tape on the cord where my roommate’s illegal pet rabbit chewed the cord.

Daughter 2 helped me change the sheets on her bed last week, and she noticed the wrinkles.  “Aren’t you going to iron those sheets?”  Who taught her that?!  How does she even know what an iron is at 6 years of age?  When she’s old enough and can figure out how to unfold the ironing board, she can iron her own sheets.

While I wait for that laundry fairy to take over the washing, drying, ironing, folding, and putting away chores and to save me from my wrinkly bad habits, here are my laundry demands for Daughter 1:

  • Sort the colors into the proper baskets:  Reds (including purples and oranges), whites and most unmentionables, jeans and dark colors, towels and sheets.
  • Don’t use fabric softener with the towels.
  • Don’t wash the kitchen dish towels with the other towels (I don’t know why I have a problem with this.  Just gross.)
  • If you complain about the way the laundry gets done, do it yourself.  You have clean clothes, so be grateful.

I’m a separater.  I can’t even lump the dogs’ bath towels with the family’s bath towels.

What are your laundry habits (good or bad)?  Do you have pet peeves about cleaning clothes?  Do you make your children do their own laundry or participate for the common good of the entire family?  Are you a lumper or a separater:  Do you throw everything into one load (who cares about the colors), or separate all loads by colors and types? I’d love to hear from you.

“I’ve Never Had Chihuahua”

Those were the chilling words I heard at a restaurant last weekend.  It was new place, and the Husband, the Daughter 1, and I were trying it out.  A patron at the table next to us uttered those words, and her voice carried.  We double-checked the menu to be sure we shouldn’t run from the place screaming. The Daughter eavesdropped for a few moments and then nodded her head in understanding.  “They’re talking about the kinds of dogs they’ve owned.”

Owned, not eaten.  Good to know.

He loves his presents. He even greets us at the door with a toy in his mouth.

I didn’t know it at the time, but it was the weekend of National Dog Day.  This post is a couple of days late, but it’s a tribute to my own crazy dogs.

We got our Portuguese Water Dog when he was 3 months old and the Daughter was 3 years old. He’s 11 now. His breeder told me that he was the most laid back PWD that she’d ever seen in all her years of breeding and showing. He is a fabulous dog.

Now before you go out and look for one for yourself, Portuguese Water Dogs are not easy dogs unless you train them and work them.  They will counter surf (if the muzzle can reach it, it’s snack time), they can be willful, and they must be groomed regularly. Positive feedback obedience training is the best.  Believe me, I did both kinds of obedience.  The choke collar training didn’t work–I don’t care how recommended the trainer is. I also trained with him in agility for several years (that’s a story for another time).

He LOVES snow and catching snowballs.

Things I love about my Portuguese Water Dog:

  • He loves to hug.  He leans against my leg and sighs.  Sweet dog.
  • He’s a clock.  He knows when it’s 7 AM (breakfast), 5 PM (dinner), and 8 PM (treats).  Any other time on the clock is fair game for T-R-E-A-T-S.
  • He can spell.  We had to stop spelling words, such as “treats,” “walk,” and “bath.”  Now we just make up words and use sign language (but only if he isn’t looking).
  • He has rat radar.  If a rodent tries to live near our house, he lets us know.  He can’t stand them.  He tore up a bush in the front flower bed to expose a nest. *shivers* The Husband sends him out on recon missions from time to time to be sure we’re rat free.

She’s really an Ewok in disguise!

The other little dog is Sidney.  I told you all about her in a previous post.  She is a mutt (I refuse to call a poodle mix a designer dog) and a rescue, which is what National Dog Day is all about.  Here are things that I love about this 12-year-old canine:

  • She’s just the right size for Daughter 2 to take on a walk.
  • She’s smart in one way:  She has picked up every begging habit that the big dog has.  Other than that, she’s not very bright.  Cuteness makes up for that.
  • She’s a clothes horse.  Can you say, “Dress up time”?

In case she gets cold…

  • She loves attention.  She is always nearby.  We just have to watch that we don’t step on her.
  • She herds her owner (Daughter 1) when it’s time for food or walking.
  • She is the big dog’s minion.

So that’s my tribute to the dogs in my life.  Did you do anything special for your dogs on National Dog Day? I’d love to hear stories about your dogs (or other pets.)  🙂

Totes, Selfies, and Sharpies

In some regards, my high school daughter is the Anti-Teenager. She avoids trends (especially in social media) and is comfortable doing her own thing. I can’t say too much about her non-teenager habits, because she’d get mad at me for sharing. I’ve already said too much. In that regard, she is very much a teenager.

Enter The Best Friend. She is my daughter’s oldest friend and like another daughter to me. They say, “We’ve known each other since before we were born.” It’s true. We moms were pregnant together, and the girls are only three weeks apart. They did many things together: kiddie gym classes, preschool, dance, sleepovers, playdates, trips to DisneyWorld,and anything else we could come up with. They are very much like sisters.

The Daughter and The Best Friend couldn’t be more different.

Totes

The Best Friend keeps me abreast of the goings on in the world of teenagers. She’s my friend on Facebook. She tells me about stuff that I would never hear from The Daughter. She also speaks as if she’s texting—shortened words and acronyms.

“OMG, that’s totes awes.”

What? When did a tote bag get involved?

The Daughter translates for me (she doesn’t speak The Best Friend’s language, but she understands it). It means, “Oh my gosh, that is totally awesome.”

“Totes” is short for “totally.” It’s one of The Best Friend’s favorite words. It also doubles as “Yes, I wholeheartedly agree with you.”

Selfies

The Best Friend loves Instagram. We haven’t ventured there yet. (I haven’t. No one else in the fam will.) TBF told me about a her friend at school who has tens of thousands of followers on Instagram. This girl gets five thousand likes or views or hits (whatever it’s called on Instagram) on any given picture on any given day. (She doesn’t use her real name, BTW.) Most of her photos are selfies.

What?

Selfies. Self portraits, of course. I’ve been enlightened.

image

My cartoon selfie

Sharpies

This ninth grader Instagram guru has very interesting hair. The Best Friend showed me one of her selfies. The brunette girl’s hair was pink. I mean pink. “Is that chalk?” I asked. After all, how are you going to get color to show up on brown hair like that?

Nope, not chalk. Sharpie.

What?

Hot pink Sharpie permanent marker. Evidently, it’s the latest way for teens to color their hair.
Who knew? I didn’t. When I was in high school, we used different colored and metallic hair mousse. Sharpies were permanent markers and were mostly just black. (And I walked to school in a hurricane uphill both ways—there’s not enough snow in Texas.)
I had so many questions. How permanent was it? Does the marker damage the hair? How do they get it out? What if they don’t like the color? The Daughter said that they probably just use another color on top. (What does she know? She’s the Anti-Teenager.)

I should have texted The Best Friend and asked her. Instead, I tried it myself. I sacrificed a lock of hair and an old towel. My brown hair is darker than Instagram Girl’s, but you can see the color.

image

The things I’ll do for a picture…

I’ll be smelling that Sharpie marker all day now. Totes.

Do you have teenagers with strange, sheepish, or independent ways? Do you monitor your child’s social media use?

Say It’s All True or Not

Odd news seems to attract my attention.  Sometimes I read odd stories and shake my head in disbelief.  Other times I think it would be fantastic if the stories were true.  One thing that is always true: Some people take it all at face value and others are complete skeptics.

Who knows?  Maybe these stories are true.  They could be in a parallel universe.  Or not.  Now for some fun.

Nessie Lives!

Recently, I found this article about sightings of the Loch Ness Monster.  Yes!  Finally, someone took a picture of a creature swimming in Loch Ness.  As usual, nay-sayers don’t believe it and the believers do.

In all seriousness, it’s a big lake.  Humans have a lot of hubris, don’t we?  Who’s to say there isn’t a creature that lives in that lake whose species has never been cataloged?   (No, I do not think it could be a mermaid.)

We are discovering new animals and plants everyday.  This possibly non-mammal, manatee-like creature could be next.  They better name it after Nessie!

image

I imagine the Nessies are this cute.

UFOs Have Technology We Could Use!

In July, the UK government released UFO documents. Over 6,700 pages of data, most of which was explainable.  Sort of.  At least until an official said that it would be nice if we had the technology to move that way.  Our planet is the only one in the infinite universe to have intelligent life?  I can’t believe that.

I watched the TV show V (yes, both versions that aired) and the numerous other shows and movies that have portrayed aliens as probing, unemotional, human-eating, scary monsters.  I’m not saying that’s not a possibility, but I’d like to believe there are life forms out there who feel and love as much as we Earthlings do.

Crop Circles Created!

Less than a month ago, a wheat farmer in Washington State discovered crop circles in his field.  This crop circle and others have been discovered mostly without any witnesses or explanation.  Some people call them hoaxes, others believe they are created by aliens, and still others think they are a natural phenomenon.  I did a search on them and thought my head would explode from all the information that’s out there.  I can’t explain them, but I think some are gorgeous. No matter how they were created.

Mysterious Shipwreck (or Something)!

When shipwreck hunters came across an anomaly at the bottom of the Baltic Sea, they were baffled by the size and shape of the object in the sonar images–amazing imagesimaginations.

Who knows how they came up with this rendition (the Halloween movie-sounding music probably doesn’t help), but why does it have to be alien in nature? How do we know it’s not really ancient in nature?

Think about the things we’ll leave behind.   What off-the-wall stories will our descendants create about the head of the Statue of Liberty in a million years when they find it at the bottom of the sea and there are no records to give them hints?

The statue was:

  • The representation of an ancient goddess.
  • The image of the wife of the first President of the United States.
  • The first woman President of the United States.
  • A look of what woman wore in America in the Twenty-First Century.
  • An enigma with no plausible explanation that anyone could agree on (like the Sphinx).

The mysterious is so, so, well, mysterious.  *rolling eyes*

That’s what is great about these things.  Everyone can have their own opinion, science, or conspiracy theory about them.  Are they true?  Did someone make them up and put them out there for other imaginations to believe and perpetuate?  Or not?  Do you have a favorite myth, hoax, or conspiracy theory?

Mermaids aren’t real?

I had a different idea for my first post, but then I heard about the announcement that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration made recently that “No evidence of aquatic humanoids has ever been found.

Really?  All this because Animal Planet ran a science fiction episode about what if mermaids were an evolutionary possibility?  You can see their press release information for yourself.

I haven’t seen the show, but there were some viewers who thought the information was believable enough to contact NOAA to ask for proof.  NOAA’s brief announcement was wise to point out the obvious that the question of the mythological creature won’t be answered by them.

No worries.  Mer-mythology is still safe. 

As a kid, I played mermaid games in the pool with my siblings and cousins.  We kicked our legs together and pushed ourselves through the water.  It was hard work keeping my feet in line and legs bending just right to get the best mermaid movement through the water.  Aquaman had it easier and could communicate with sea creatures.  I wanted that gift.

As an art major (very briefly) in college, I had to do a full-sized self portrait.  I made myself a mermaid.

This is where my 14-year-old appropriates a quote from a Harry Potter character: “Are you sure that’s a real mermaid?  Well, it’s not very good, is it?” (You can see why I changed my major.)

News alert: Diana Beebe is not a mermaid and never was a mermaid.  This is only a photograph of an art assignment, not of a mermaid. No calls to NOAA or any other agency to check, please.

Does that mean mermaids aren’t real?

Even though archeological, biological, zoological, or any other  -logical evidence doesn’t exist, the fascination and love of mermaids exists worldwide.   It would take pages to list all the movies, books, and TV shows that include merpeople.

A friend of mine writes a blog about all things mer, including many people who have their own tails and spend their time working to protect our world’s oceans.  Check out Cynthia’s blog and then tell me mermaids aren’t real.

I imagine that those people who contacted NOAA for answers after watching an episode of science theory feel a little bit silly chasing a red herring (sorry, couldn’t resist at least one pun).

What mythological creature would you love to see found, or not?  Why, or why not?  I’d love to hear what you think.  Leave a comment below.

Following and sharing are welcome, too.  😉

Hello!

Welcome to my new blog where I’ll write about everything from family and gardening, books and movies, and anything else that is interesting in life.