5 Things That Happened During The Month I Forgot About This Blog

Whoops. Forgot I had a blog. My bad. Sorry, Mom.

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1. I hiked Watkins Glen, an orgy of waterfalls and gorges. The Finger Lakes is a gorge-ous place.

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2. I got a second tattoo, of a death’s head moth (top). I illustrated the original illustration for the tattoo artist to apply. It’s a reference to my love of Hannibal/horror/reading/movies/Silence of the Lambs.

The hairs there are from my dog shedding into the moisturizer. Which is gross, but not as gross as the back hair people were joking about on Facebook. With friends like these, who needs enemies?

The bottom tattoo is Alys’. We got the tattoos together, because TWINSIES. So Goth. Very wow.

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3. I crocheted Clyde the Yeti. He likes jazz music. We share a classic pear body type.

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4. I designed this logo for an ice cream pop company. Delicious.

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5. I was my husband’s muse. Behold this portrait. It’s me, imagining cake.

As you can see, I am the second-best artist in the family.

I should hand this blog over to him.

He’d probably update it.

The Surprisingly Easy Way To Ditch 40% Of Your Wardrobe

I discarded 40% of my wardrobe today, talking smack the whole time to the losers. I said stuff like:

– “You chafe my armpits and have to go.”
“You require a slip and that’s bullshit. Thanks for your service.”
– “You are boxy and weird.”
– “You are doing my chest no favors.”
“You are a Janet-Jackson-caliber wardrobe malfunction waiting to happen.”
– “You are a crutch for my ‘ugly’ days and must leave.”
– “You make me look like a prairie woman.”
“Does polyester burn? Because you deserve to burn.”

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I started The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up to figure out how the fuck someone managed to fill up 200 pages on “tidying,” then dupe people into buying it.

Then I realized I was hopelessly in love with the author, who seems like a fussy old lady but is actually a very fetching young Japanese woman. She’s all about keeping only useful, beloved objects in your home, and treating them with love. (A great summary of her beliefs is here.) Her sort of Shintoist, animism-infused beliefs annoy Christians (1, 2), which I find funny.

I decided to try it myself.

I hauled all of my clothes out of the closet/drawers and dumped them on the bed. I held each item up and determined if it “sparked joy.”

It was touchy-feely nonsense, but it worked. I got rid of 30-40% of my wardrobe in under an hour.

You should try it.

Top 3 Reasons I’m A Bad “Artist”

When you imagine an artist, you imagine someone with perfect eyeliner, clove cigarettes, ethereal dance moves, and stories of late night adventure.

I am none of these things. In fact, I’m a School of Arts & Architecture failure in a lot of ways. Here are my top 3.

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1. I’m meh about Shakespeare. And, like, old stuff in general. I don’t like “the classics,” Shakespeare, poetry, philosophy, black and white movies, or any music that was released pre-Jackson 5.

I read a lot, but it’s mostly genre fiction. I am not chic, thoughtful, or with my reading choices. The world’s confusing enough. Give me escapism.

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2. I am hilariously un-musical. I “played clarinet” for four disastrous middle-school years.

I didn’t like the reed’s vibrations on my tongue and lips, so I never practiced.

I faked my way through every single orchestra concert.

I also lip-synched during elementary school chorus. My parents tell stories of how I’d be in the back, half-heartedly moving my mouth out of sync with the music. I’d mostly be staring at the ceiling.

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3. My wardrobe is a yawn. 

Most artists have a wardrobe consisting of:
– High-end design
– Violently anti-consumerist mismatched/damaged thrift finds
or
– Quirky vintage era “pieces” (usually the 1940s-60s: hippies, greasers, housewives, Bettie Page)

I wear jeans, t-shirt, and sneakers every day. I have five skirts — all A-line, in dark colors. I wear the same three dresses to every wedding I attend.

If fashion is about expressing oneself through style, I guess I have nothing on the inside.

It’s a good thing I draw pictures sometimes; otherwise I’d be totally disqualified.

Ads That Are Memorable for the Wrong Reason

The annual Lemont Strawberry Festival was halfheartedly promoted with a few hand-drawn signs scattered around town.

The signs were so ugly and forgettable that my husband said he could do better.

I said I could one-up “better” — I could make something very, very memorable.

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Icky, right?

Creepy and ugly ad campaigns are my favorite. Consider, for example, the tattoo-worthy Burger King:

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This is not a guy you leave alone with your sister.

Top 5 Reasons To Visit Virginia’s DinosaurLand!

Jurassic Park doesn’t exist (yet!), so you’ll have to settle for a close second: DinosaurLand.

Here are the top 5 reasons to go.

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1. Education. All displays are completely to scale and photorealistic. The placards tell you fascinating facts. Did you know that the praying mantis is “the highest evolved of all insects”? Bet you didn’t think evolution worked that way. Well, it does.

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2. Terror. You will be at the edge of your seat the entire time. Except you won’t be sitting — you’ll be running for your life! These displays are so spot-on that you’ll still have the jitters when you’re back on the highway.

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3. Biodiversity. Nature has provided bounteous derp-faces in all shapes and sizes. Gaze in wonder at the one-toothed Sabertooth and all his friends. You will find smirks, scowls, leers, giggles, and big-tongued roars galore.