Google Something Clever 2.0: March 2014

Mar 25, 2014

A Guide to Ninja Shopping Cart Skills

This one is for the parents that do the grocery shopping. In my house, that's me. I remember the first time I took my son shopping, when he was just weeks old. I had to make the hard decision of whether to figure out how to secure his bucket car seat to the cart, or use the built-in seat, which was teeming with E-coli and who knows what else.

No, I'm not going to tell you which one I chose. That's something every parent has to figure out on their own.

Fast forward five years. He's too cool to ride in the cart now. Even the car cart! So I have to somehow mind him while simultaneously pushing a cart. Something about me that you may not know: I only have two hands. And so it came to be that the first time I let him shop sans cart, he was running amok in the meat department, greeting strangers and dancing, and he almost ran smack into some lady. She didn't mind at all, because he is adorable, but I did hear a man nearby mumble something about "... mother's resposibility to watch..." blah blah blah.

Can you believe I didn't run him over with my cart? Where's my medal, people?

Two things occurred to me that day:
  1. Some people are real dicks when they're hungry.
  2. Parents sure do have to learn a lot of crazy skills that they never tell you about.
And so I present to you, the shopping parent, A Guide to Ninja Shopping Cart Skills, on NickMom. Enjoy!

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Mar 24, 2014

Top 9 Worst Places for Kids to Tag Along

I'd like to talk to my stay-at-home and work-at-home parent friends for a moment, here. Do you remember the first time you brought your toddler along to your eye doctor appointment? How you brought plenty of toys and books and snacks? How you figured it would only be a few minutes? How you ended up chasing him through the showroom with one contact in, begging him to stop touching the mirrors and trying on every pair of (expensive) glasses)?

Yeah, that.

Today I'm over at NickMom talking about the Top 9 Worst Places for Kids to Tag Along. Come join me!

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Mar 21, 2014

I Just Want to Be Alone With Lady Writers

Have you heard? Jen of People I Want to Punch in the Throat and all of the cool kids from I Just Want to Pee Alone have written another book. It’s called I Just Want to Be Alone (I’m sensing a trend). And because I’m second-tier cool, co-author Stephanie of Where Crazy Meets Exhaustion sent me a copy. Haha. I’ve already read it, and you can’t even buy it until tomorrow (although you can preorder it now)!

Mar 19, 2014

Upworthy Headlines for Parents

You WON'T BELIEVE the JAW-DROPPING reaction this writer has when she reads Upworthy headlines:

She rolls her eyes, and then she clicks the little arrow thing to tell Facebook that she doesn't want to see them. Oh, maybe you would believe that. Because that's a completely normal reaction.

Or are you on Team Upworthy? Does your HEART ABSOLUTELY MELT when you see that dog greeting his master as he returns from war? Can you NOT BELIEVE YOUR EYES when some guy pretends to be homeless and then people treat him like he's homeless or whatever? Well, I guess I'm happy for you. It's nice that you're entertained by some silly little viral thing on the internet.


Mar 17, 2014

A Timeline of St. Patrick’s Day Drinks

Happy Saint Patrick's Day! What's your poison? Are you sipping an Irish coffee while reading this? Are you waiting for happy hour to guzzle green suds? Or are you unsure of what to drink?

If you're undecided, I'm here to help. I have a very simple age-by-age Saint Patrick's Day drinking guide up on NickMom today. Click on over and get your drink on! (Just don't do it at any of the anti-gay parades, because I don't support that.)

Mar 13, 2014

Five Fun Facts About "The Goonies"

Fun fact #1: My husband loves The Goonies. How much? This much:

That's right, he owns the treasure map doubloon and a bag of rich stuff.

Fun Fact #2: The cast wasn't allowed to see the pirate ship until they filmed their first scene with it. Those reactions were real (this is also true of candy garden scene in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory).

Mar 8, 2014

Jane Pratt is My Spirit Animal

You regulars know that I love my magazines. Always have. And anyone who was born between the mid-seventies and the mid-eighties knows that Sassy was the greatest thing that ever happened to glossy paper. Yes, ever greater than my beloved Readers Digest or Entertainment Weekly.

In case you've been living under a rock... Sassy was a teen magazine for the rest of us. Instead of profiling Kirk Cameron, they profiled Kurt Cobain. It was less lip gloss and more birth control. It was for smart, sassy girls like you and me. And its founding editor, Jane Pratt, was only 24 years old when the magazine premiered in 1988.

Impressive, no? I wanted to be just like her one day.

Mar 6, 2014

Chivalry, Please Die Already

There’s been a lot of chatter about chivalry on the internet lately, which is weird, since we do not live in medieval times (evidence: the internet). Is it dead? Did those bitchy feminists kill it? Can you be a feminist and still expect chivalry? What do those crazy women want, anyway??

I can’t speak for all women, but I can tell you what I want. I want to be treated like a fully realized adult human being, with four working limbs, and a working brain. Is that too much to ask?

Chivalry isn’t about being polite; it’s about being patronizing. “Make her feel safe,” they say. “Make her feel like a lady.”

Men, I do not need or want you to make me feel safe. You are not my guard dog. You are not my daddy. Assuming that my safety lies in your hands, and not mine, is condescending and gross.

I do not need you to make me feel like a lady. You know what makes me feel like a lady? The fact that I am a lady. “Like a lady” is literally the only way I ever feel. When I paint my fingernails, I feel like a lady. When I use a cordless drill, I feel like a lady. When I cook a meal for my husband, I feel like a lady. When I mow the lawn, I feel like a lady. I do not need a man to perform weird rituals to affirm my gender, thanks.

I recently read an article where the (male) writer was all worked up because men these days won’t stop and help if they drive past a woman changing a tire. Why should they? If you see me standing by my car with a sign that says, “Help, I have no life skills or cell phone,” by all means, pull over. But if I’m changing my tire, obviously I don’t need you to change my tire! (An aside, this must be a tires-only phenomenon, because I can’t tell you how many times a strange man has offered to help when he spotted me filling up my windshield washer fluid. Seriously, guy, if I can’t manage that on my own, I shouldn’t even have a driver’s license.)

To the chivalry apologists that claim they’re “only doing it to be polite,” I counter, would you do that for a man? Holding doors for everyone should be standard procedure. Rushing ahead and opening doors? Weird and awkward. Please don’t. Offering to carry a large and/or heavy load for me? Only if I’m clearly struggling—meaning you’ve witnessed me almost drop said item, or audibly grunt. And again, these are things you should be doing for men, too.

Bottom line, gentlemen: next time you feel the urge to do something “nice” or “polite” for a woman, particularly one you don’t know, ask yourself what your motivation is. “Because she’s a woman”? Get the fuck out of here. “Because it’s the right thing to do”? Carry on.

This post originally appeared on In the Powder Room

Mar 2, 2014

Top 9 Reasons I’m Glad I’m Not at the Oscars This Year

I know, it's Sunday, and I normally don't post on Sundays, but this isn't just any Sunday, is it? It's Oscar Sunday!

Eh, whatever, I don't care about the Oscars. Not one whit. But that didn't stop me from writing about them for -- drumroll please--- NickMom! Yay, I'm a writer for NickMom now! What does that mean for you? More funny stuff. Why don't you pop on over and read my very first NickMom post, Top 9 Reasons I’m Glad I’m Not at the Oscars This Year.