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Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Tired and feathered

Today was weird. Seattle is smoky from all of the wild fires. It's opaque outside. Opaque! It has the illusion of a cloudy autumn day, only without the crispness. Without the oxygen. But it's 86 degrees. We're suffocating! Make it stop! Stop this madness!

See? Opaque!

Something else that has been unnerving me lately is the fact that my parents' backyard is being littered with crow feathers. My dad tells me he picks "at least 20 to 30 feathers a day" off the lawn. Is this normal?

While I'm on the subject, let's settle a bet. Are feathers filthy, plague-ridden animal parts not to be touched? Or are they fun, tickly adornments for the tops of sand castles? I grew up believing the latter and I think I'm going to keep that opinion no matter how much I'm presented evidence of the contrary.

I gotta go. I'm tired. The haze has me in a weird mood and there's only one cure: cleaning the living room while I listen to a podcast!!!!

Until next time,

P.S. Martha can now say "podcast." She is an intellectual.
P.P.S. She can also say "pancake." Sounds the same as "podcast."

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Toddler Blues

Today, after a week of single-parenting while Andy is in England, I took Martha to Kelsey Creek Farm in Bellevue. There are sheep, pigs, cows, horses—all of the animals from her books, alive in the flesh. What a fantastic final hurrah to our week of mother-daughter bonding!

Martha sat in the gravel pathway and ate rocks.

A few minutes later, she found a set of steps near the sensory garden and climbed up and down them four times.

One of the horses did manage to hold her attention for a bit. She reached out and offered him a rock. I grabbed her hand away from the beast's giant teeth and she cried.

I have decided to gradually start blogging again, while making no promises and keeping expectations low. I probably shouldn't have even written that sentence.

Over the past month I've fallen back in, and then back out, of love with blue cheese. Throughout July it blanketed my salads, filled my MorningStar Farms® Chik'n Nugget pitas and even replaced cream cheese on my bagels.

Andy and I went out to dinner last weekend and I ordered a cobb salad.

"Instead of the bacon and chicken, can I just get extra blue cheese?" I asked, knowing the answer would be yes, for this is America after all.

Andy, who enjoys foods in moderation, looked at me in disgust.

But sadly, my Stilton love affair is over. I made the mistake of buying Trader Joe's blue cheese and after a few helpings, something switched. The tanginess was too tangy. The closer to the rind, the more disgusting. Even writing this now, I'm on the verge of throwing up.

Worst thing is, I smell blue cheese everywhere I go. I've been washing my hands all afternoon and still can't scour the stench off my fingers. I'm the Lady Macbeth of poor dairy choices, haunted and sick to my stomach.

Barfing emoji!


Friday, July 21, 2017

A child is born

I miss blogging. I miss it as a creative outlet. I miss it as a historical record.

Mostly, I miss all the attention.

A lot has happened since my last post. A reality show host became president. Katy Perry got a pixie cut. I GAVE BIRTH to the delightful Martha Williamson. Anna got rhabdo from CrossFit. They called off the search for MH370. Max and Natalie had a baby! I gasped as a Nordstrom sales associate announced that my bra size is now a 34E.

So much to unpack. Let's start with the birth.

It sounds like I'm kidding when I say that I had no idea it would hurt so bad, but I genuinely had no idea it would hurt so bad. Somewhere in the back of my mind I faintly remembered hearing that labor was painful, but that didn't apply to me! I was going to get an epidural at the first whiff of a contraction. I would feel a bit crampy, b-line it for the hospital and order a milkshake as they stuck a giant, drug-filled needle into my back.

Lamaze classes? More like scaremongering propaganda sessions backed by Big Aromatherapy and their cronies in the natural childbirth lobby. No thanks! I didn't need to sit in a room with a bunch of other couples, fresh faced from their pregnancy photoshoots, and subject myself to their absurd anxieties.

Well. I get it now.

Sometimes, even if you meet the "criteria" (1-minute contractions, 5 minutes apart for more than an hour), you still can't get the epidural. Why? Your cervix is the size of a pea and won't budge. The hospital is full of other human mammals pushing out offspring. The hospital staff are assholes. Who knows? All I know is that I was turned away twice and in labor for two days. At one point I was splashing around in the bathtub like a wounded manatee, wailing like a banshee while Andy placed a slice of Freschetta atop my throbbing abdomen. But for the first time in my life, even pizza didn't help.



Hollywood made me assume that pushing was the painful part of labor. It's not. At least not for me. The painful part is the CONTRACTIONS. "What do contractions feel like?" I've since Googled that on a few occasions and never found a satisfactory answer. The closest description I read was that it feels like bad cramps...except also with someone stabbing you repeatedly in the stomach.

Now too much time has passed to describe it accurately. I can't find the words. I can't access the memories. What everyone says is true: your body forces you to forget. It's a survival mechanism.

OK, that's probably good enough for now. I don't want to use up all my good material in the first blog post back.


P.S. For the record, I stand by my decision to skip the childbirth classes. Nothing could have prepared me for the pain. And the other couples would have annoyed me. And the classes are long and would have cut into my last remaining childless weekends.

P.P.S. I did eventually get the epidural!

P.P.P.S. My reward for the pains of childbirth, your reward for having to look at the photo above of me in the bath:

Monday, May 2, 2016

Clap for these hookers

Leicester City won the English Premier League title!

It's a big deal. Crazier than if the Mariners won the World Series. Imagine the Everett AquaSox winning and you're getting closer.

Yep, those dudes—exhaustedly congratulating each other on a job well done—had a 5000 to 1 chance of winning the league title, and they DID IT.

OK, that's it for today. I need to walk up to Safeway and get something for dinner. Any ideas? Can't do pasta again. Or can I? Maybe I'll just do that.


P.S. Yeesh. The word "exhaustedly" exhausts me.  I'm exhausted now.

P.P.S. By the way, look at the Everett AquaSox logo. Look at that crazy frog. He's so fun. And is the "E" on his hat an upside down version of the retro Mariners' "M"? The whole logo is fun. It's just FUN. Love it! So FUN.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

So THAT'S what soap is for

I was in high school when I first learned that you're supposed to wash your body, not just your hair. Well, junior high. But it was 9th grade, so it counted as high school. Don't get me started.

Anyway, I was simultaneously dumbfounded and horrified of my own ignorance. The worst part was that it made so much sense. Hair isn't the only thing that gets dirty. The body—certain areas in particular—also gets gross and requires cleaning. Wow. How had this not occurred to me before?

I don't know. I knew that you had to take a shower because your hair would look greasy otherwise. But that was as far as I took it. I never extended that line of reasoning to its natural conclusion: if hair needs washing after a while, then certainly too does the anus. Nope. Never dawned on me.

I thought I was alone in this. But my sisters (C & F) and cousin (name retracted) say they had similar epiphanies way too late in life. The cousin thinks it might have been college for her.

Now, I know you have questions. I've provided my answers below.

What did you think that bar of soap in the shower was for?
A nice treat if you wanted your arms to smell good. A luxury item. Akin to a tub of mango body butter from Bath & Body Works.

Didn't you stink?
I don't think I stunk that bad. I wore deodorant. The shampoo from my hair and the water from the shower probably helped keep the situation manageable. But there's no telling if the sudsy water found its way into the key crevasses. I doubt it.

Why are you sharing this in such a public forum?
If I can raise awareness and change even one person's life by sharing my story, then I feel it's my duty to do so. Also, for attention.


Saturday, April 30, 2016

You mean this ol' thing?

BAAAAAAACK! And I said "tap-tap" so get out of my seat.

Becky with the good hair.

'Here's what I've been up to since those two video blogs exhausted me into hibernation six months ago.
  • Taking lunchtime baths
  • Accusing Andy of being a bad driver
  • Getting accused by Andy of being a bad driver
  • Jumping in the Puget Sound
  • Doing high-kicks during evening walks around the neighborhood
  • Googling "Brazilian Butt Lift Celebrities." I even started a blog post about it that I never finished...see below.

I Can't Stop Googling Brazilian Butt Lifts

Yep. Of all the controversial topics to bring me out of retirement, this is it. Trust me, I'm as not surprised as you are.

The other day, whilst browsing the 'Bravo Real Housewives' subreddit, I came across a post discussing whether any of 'the wives' might have had a Brazilian Butt Lift procedure.

Now, I've heard of Brazilian Butt Lifts before, and in the back of my mind I've always known that the Kardashian-inspired, bubble booty trend of the 2010s must involve plastic surgery, but I've never truly confronted the reality of the Brazilian Butt Lift until now.

After scrolling through various Google image searches and many horrendous post-op photographs, I'm equal parts disgusted and amazed. I find these augmented butts both hideous and beautiful. The idea of people carving bits of fat out of their arms in order to sculpt and adhere an oversized cartoon bottom onto their actual bottom is FASCINATING. In a way, it's art.

Butt Lifts are also proof that being stick thin is not cool anymore. Scrawny butts are so two thousand and eight. These days, it's all about the waist trainers and butts made of repurposed skin. Perhaps these celebs are onto something. Perhaps it's time we all "upcycle" our muffin tops

  • Eating fake sausage mixed with roasted vegetables mixed with rice pilaf
  • Using napkins as toilet paper (with plans to buy toilet paper soon)
  • Keeping my ingrown toenail at bay
  • Wearing shorts
  • Wearing Kylie-inspired lipstick
  • Working 

In other news, RHONY is back. Jo Jo is coming to Bumbershoot. The Mariners' CEO quit. The viaduct is closed for two weeks. The sun is out. I ordered more essential oils for the diffuser. Nobody can shut up about Donald Trump. My sister had a baby named Harry. I cleaned my water bottle. Andy discovered JCrew and puts the emphasis on the J ("How come you never told me about JAY-crew before?"). Rob Kardashian lost 50 pounds. Summer is just around the corner.

Back in a bit, 


Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Rainbow of pantsuits

Gee whiz. You open your laptop to write a blog and before you know it you're knee deep in Borat clips on YouTube. Hours have passed. It's now dark outside. My leg is numb from this weird position I'm sitting in. Oh Internet, you little devil you. Come back here with my precious time.

Back to the matter at hand. I was listening to 'The Takeaway' on NPR today (yep - I'm smart) and it was all about Hillary Clinton's wardrobe.

As you'd expect, the whole segment was terrible. They interviewed a lady named Robin Givhan who is the Pulitzer-Prize-winning fashion editor for The Washington Post. She talked about how Hil first started to wear pantsuits back when she was first lady.

"You could almost hear the sigh of relief when she finally said, 'enough with these pink skirtsuits and headbands!'"

Did you almost hear the sigh? I didn't almost hear the sigh, but I'll take Robin's word for it.

Then she goes on to talk about how Hillary took things a step further during her senate run, choosing to wear only a black pantsuit as a sort of uniform.

"It gave her the same kind of freedom that a dark suit gives men, which is that it took the conversation of clothing off the table."

Well, it obviously didn't take the conversation of clothing off the table completely. You are, after all, currently discussing her clothing on national radio right now.

Robin continues:

"When she ran for president the first time and had that rainbow of pantsuits, I think to some degree she was again sort of struggling with this idea of power and femininity, and 'how much can I embrace being a woman and declare that as part of my campaign."

What the actual F.

I highly doubt Hillary Clinton was agonizing over which shade of pantsuit portrayed the right level of femininity.

My main problem with this—what made me want to scrape my ear drums out with a rusty spoon—was the way that they tried to frame the typical 'fluff piece on a female politician's clothing' into some sort of enlightening feminist thinkpiece. Come on, NPR. Just admit that you wanted to talk about Hilary's pantsuits because they're funny. Don't try to make it deeper than that.


Now that's more like it!  No, it's not a traditional costume from East Asia. It's the actual coat she wore over her actual dress to the actual 1993 Inaugural Ball.

Image by Henry Dunay via Wikimedia Commons

See ya,

P.S. I mean, I love Project Runway as much as the next guy, but there's a Pulitzer Prize for fashion writing? Really? OK, that's fine. Fashion is art. Fine! I get it. It's OK. Nevermind.

P.P.S. Did you know that Hillary Clinton watches 'Real Housewives of New York'? My source: Dorinda Medley (so take it with a grain of salt)

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Hey peers, we're bad at socializing now.

I've noticed something. Us late-20-somethings, we're bad at socializing now. We were so good at it back in college! We were ice-breaker experts. Conversation flowed like Biggie's rhymes. First-time acquaintances became instant friends. Everyone was awesome. Every night ended in multiple Facebook friend requests.

Things are tougher nowadays. The chat is sluggish. People already have enough friends. It's been a long week. They're sleepy. They have to get up early the next day. Etcetera, etcetera.

In fact, I've determined that our declining social skills boil down to five reasons:

1. We're out of practice
This is the most obvious reason. We're simply out of practice. Busier schedules and longer commutes have resulted in far fewer social gatherings than the college years. We've lost our mojo.

2. We have fewer common touch-points
There used to be so much to talk about. "Did you see those guys who made the giant slip 'n slide out in the courtyard earlier?" "Yep!" "Did you hear that those two broke up?" "Yes, can you believe it?" "Did you go out last night?" "Yeah, we were at the 80s party."

That's the way it used to be! Conversations were like an improv show. We 'yes-anded' the night away. When you live within a one-mile radius of everyone at the gathering, you have more things in common. There's more to talk about. Thus, talking to people is easier.

3. We know 'work' is a lame topic, but it's 80% of our lives now
People don't want to talk about work, and I hate asking them about it. But after a few awkward pauses I'm forced to jump in with, "So how's work going?" We're all a bit depressed it's come to that, but also relieved that the pause is over.

(I've heard the same is true of people with kids not wanting to talk about kids all the time but resorting to it eventually because it's all they have.)

4. We just don't care as much
This is a huge problem. I'm guilty of this more than any of the other reasons in this list. I JUST DON'T CARE. I can't feign interest like I used to.

5. One bad apple spoils the whole bunch
One of the reasons social gatherings feel more difficult, even for us schmucks who still try to make an effort, is that the really terrible people—'conversational handbrakes' as Andy calls them—simply limit the possibilities for everyone. It's like what Top Chef Head Judge Tom Colicchio says about seasoning: if you combine a perfectly seasoned ingredient with a bland ingredient, the net result is bland. Even the finest raconteur can't save a party full of duds.


P.S. I'm the best!

Monday, November 2, 2015

Spotlight on the searchlight

Spotlights, or 'searchlights' as Google informs me is the more common terminology, have baffled me my whole life. You'll be driving around at night and there one is—a giant beam, gyrating across the night sky.

Where is it coming from? Probably a car dealership.

Is it effective? When people see one, do they stop everything, pull off the nearest exit and weave through the city streets until they find the source? Upon arriving at the car dealership, do they shuffle like zombies to the front entrance chanting 'must buy car, must buy car' and knock on the door of the dark office until the secretary arrives in the morning?

Thomas Edison with his searchlight cart.

Image via Wikimedia Commons

As the co-founder of a marketing agency, I naturally wonder about return on investment. Do searchlights bring in enough custom to cover the rental and electricity costs? Do dealerships measure this in anyway? Do they ask customers to fill in a brief survey on how they heard about the dealership: word of mouth, Google, newspaper ad, leaflet or searchlight?

Do you need a permit to operate a searchlight? That, I think I can answer. Please refer to Section B, Paragraph B of your Seattle Sign Regulation Handbook.

B. In addition to the signs described in subsection A of this section above, commercial or noncommercial messages may be displayed for a total of four (4) fourteen (14) consecutive day periods a calendar year; these additional four (4) periods are the maximum, whether the message is the same message or a different message. These messages may be displayed on banners, streamers, strings of pennants, fabric signs, festoons of lights, flags, wind-animated objects, rigid signs, balloons, searchlights, portable signs attached to vehicles, or devices of a carnival nature, and shall be allowed as temporary signs in all zones. 

Looks like you're free to use one, as long as it's only for 14 days at a time, a maximum of four times a year.

Lots to think about.

Sweet dreams,

P.S. Low fat yogurt can burn in Hell.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Man, who invited Buzzkill Bieber?

Andy and I were about to go to a concert (known to youths as a "gig") this evening when—BAM—I got a severe stomach ache. We were at the bus stop when it hit me. The thought of being far away from my home toilet was too much to bear. We went back to the apartment, I got in the bath and Andy gave the tickets away on Reddit.

We consoled ourselves by thinking of how much fun the lucky recipient—a broke college student—must be having. We remember the time when strangers gave us their extra tickets to Alcatraz. It was so kind. Now we've made good with the universe.


Universe. My mom hates the word. Not so much the word itself, but how people toss it around willy-nilly for their ambiguous spiritual statements. It's filler. "I'm sending positive thoughts into the universe" is the new "boy, some weather we're having."

She's tired of it. I can't say I blame her.

Switching gears, who is your celebrity look alike? I've been told Ally Hilfiger (star of MTV's "Rich Girls", Tommy Hilfiger's daughter and current Chronic Lyme Disease sufferer along with Yolanda and Avril) and Kimberly J. Brown, the girl from the Disney Channel original movie "Halloween Town".

I can see it. Except that girl has a butt chin and I don't.

Oh god, I just realized that I've blogged about this before. I've officially run out of things to say.

Happy almost Halloween,


P.S. Woops, almost forgot the reason why you clicked on this post! Here you go, behold the world's most uptight popstar:

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