One whole wheat nostril with a side order of arm pit juice please. And, no, I will not pray to your penis.

I think I am getting old.  My dendrites appear to be shriveling up, no longer able to form a connection with my mind.  Or, worse, making connections with the wrong parts.  Here is a glimpse into a day in my life:

  • Back car out of garage.  So far so good.  Get out of car and close garage door.  Good.  Then proceed to sit in passenger seat.  And wonder why car is not moving.  Oops.  Check to see if anyone saw that.  Breath sigh of relief and back car out of driveway.
  • Make wrong turn on highway and have to double back.  Realize that my gas tank is dangerously close to empty and curse myself for having to waste “fumes” on backtracking.
  • Arrive at clothing store.  “Oh” and “Aw” over new items on clearance rack.  Leave the store, and fumble to put on black jacket before going outside.  Remember that I did not bring black jacket.  Forgot it at home on couch.  Crap.  Wonder what black article in left hand is. Realize I have just left the store with clearance black dress pants in hand slung over shoulder.  Oops.  Return to store and apologize profusely.

Honestly.  This sort of thing happens to me all the time.  Damn this aging grey matter and the embarrassing situations it gets me in to.  I’m only in my forties.  What the heck will I be like twenty years from now?  A drooling, babbling, lump of stupidity with a double chin and a milky coating over one eye?

Today I felt like doing something a little different.  Rather than present three pieces of extremely valuable information relating to my rant above, I have decided to offer you three tidbits that I’d rather forget.  And it sounds like I’ll have no problem doing so.  Now, where was I?  Oh ya…

1)  Is your penis worthy of wearing a spanky fuchsia ribbon and parading itself around a public park?  You must be so proud.  But I must warn you that making an exhibition of it in just any park may land you in the clinker.  And on some lists that may have neighbours showing up at your door with torches and giant clubs.  Best to “parade” your prized possession at a venue where it will truly be appreciated.  And I know of just the place.

It turns out that in some cultures, the penis is worship-worthy.  It is the master of fertility.  (Although, I’m not sure where it would be without the lowly female’s egg.  But enough of my offended female sensibilities).  Worship the penis and your barren uterus will pump out babies aplenty.  Especially if you honour said phallus with a shiny pink bow.  And one need not worry about unsightly foreskins–only circumcised members allowed.

This image may take me longer to forget than I had originally hoped.  If you’d like to make an offering to a holy dick, yourself, these are found in a secluded spot behind the Swissotel Nai Lert Park Hotel in Beijing.

2)  So, you have just earned your Masters Degree in Fine Arts.  What will you do next?  I know.  Open a bakery where you can sell body parts made of bread.  Yes.  These morose dismembered heads are, supposedly, as edible as your harmless-looking, squishy loaf of Wonder Bread.

Kittiwat Unarrom, the artist behind the heads and appendages at Bread Head Bakery in Ratchaburi, Thailand, makes a plethora of body parts out of dough that contains other treasures like raisins and cashews, and occasionally, chocolate.  (I like to think that the chocolate is an unwilling participant, however).  Need a hand?  You’ve got it.  He’ll even throw in a foot or two.

Maybe I’m weird, but I simply cannot imagine sitting in the staff room at lunch and gnawing on a whole-wheat nose.  Ack.  Damn.  I threw up in my mouth again.

If you’d like to see the Freddy Krueger of bakers in action, check out this video.  Warning:  View with extra large vomit bag close at hand.

3)  And, you knew I couldn’t get through this post without a tribute to our friends in Japan–who, apparently, like some pretty strange beverages.

One that tastes like the juice from an armpit.   Just what you want.  A bottle of “sweat.”

Another that contains pig placenta.  Where did I put that damn barf bag?

Yes.  They’ve mixed cola and a vegetable.  I must admit, I kind of want to try this.

And what the heck does “in love? be juicy? mean?”  And what on earth would it taste like.

Need new puke bag.  This one’s full.

And I don’t even know what to say about this.

Oops.  My husband just found my peanut butter in with the coffee mugs.  It’s going to be a long day.

Credits:  Cartoon (http://ershu.wordpress.com/2008/03/13/forgetfulness-at-its-peak/), penises wearing bows (silencedmajority.blogs.com), breadheads (www.geekologie.com), sweat (pocarisweat.com), placenta (www.ebaumsworld.com), cucumber (www.japanprobe.com), juicy (www.ebaumsworld.com), weird eye trick (www.funnyjunksite.com).

Plans for the Day: Swallow Rhode Island, get my dog’s tongue shortened, and shop for cookies with Betty White.

I tend to dream a lot.  Part of my breakfast routine is sharing my previous night’s slumber adventures with my husband.  He doesn’t really listen, but I tell him about them anyways.  He claims he doesn’t dream.  I tell him, “everyone dreams, but not everyone remembers.”  He doesn’t believe this.

I miss dreaming.  It would seem that my cough suppressant-induced comas aren’t conducive to dreams.  I do enjoy being able to sleep through the night without awaking to rib-snapping fits of hacking up phlegm (who wouldn’t right?), but I no longer have anything exciting to talk about over breakfast.

I once dreamt that I was shopping for Peanut Butter Pirate Cookies with Betty White.  That was fun.  I’ve also ridden a roller-coaster with Gordon Ramsay yelling in my ear.  That was strange, but I find Ramsay rather sexy.  Especially when he’s cursing.  I don’t know what “bollocks” are, but they sound dirty.  My sleep-twin has been rescued and seduced by Horatio Cain, sunglasses and all–which made me look at David Caruso in a whole new light.  I’ve even had my childhood dog return to life–but in my dream, he smelled like decaying canine (whatever that smells like) and I felt guilty for not wanting to play with him.

I would love to hear about your strangest dreams.  Maybe I could pretend they were mine and talk about them over tomorrow’s breakfast?

1)  In my Gordon Ramsay dream, we were stuck in a car at the top of a roller coaster.  And, no, not a roller coaster car–a street car.  In his defense, that could explain a lot of his yelling.  And his profanities.

It would appear that someone in Japan also has strange dreams–dreams that he or she later makes a reality.  Welcome to the the Skycycle in Okayama‘s Washuzan Highland Park–a roller coaster buggy that you must pedal, yourself.  Just what I need–a mixture of terrifying heights and cardio.

And I hate roller coasters.  I am afraid of heights and I suffer from motion sickness.  These give me panic attacks while I barf.  I have found that the best way to endure one is to simply close my eyes.  Well, this Japanese invention totally rules that remedy out.  I don’t want to be the one pedaling with their eyes closed, bumping into everyone else’s cart.  I might shove someone off the track, sending them plummeting to the ground below, perhaps on top of a vehicle carrying an elderly couple and their great grandchildren and their blind chihuahua, Clive, which would be a shame, course.  Or worse, I might hit Gordon Ramsay.  And he’d yell at me.  Hey, maybe dreams can come true.

Here’s what this thing looks like in action.  It looks sort of sedate, but remember…this involves the prolonged torture of having to LOOK DOWN!

2)  As I sit down to breakfast to bombard my husband with tales of my dreams the night before, I’ll have to stop and inspect my cereal more closely.  I could be inadvertently devouring a small fortune–and the likeness of a province or state.

Apparently, two sisters from Virginia (who knew their geographical shapes quite well and, obviously, eat very slowly) discovered this Illinois-like flake and managed to sell it on e-bay for $1350.

Rumour has it that the pair originally tried to auction the flake, itself, but were not in accordance with e-bay’s food rules.  Instead, they auctioned off a coupon redeemable for this crispy corn Illinois replica.  Clever.

3)  So, in the dream about my “dead dog come back to life,” I am happy to see my canine friend.  Don’t get me wrong.  But he smells really bad.  Doggy breath is raunchy at the best of times, but after being dead for twenty years–ACK!

Now here is a dog that I wouldn’t want puppy kisses from at all–dead or alive.  This is Puggy, the Guinness Record Holder for the dog with the longest tongue–the Gene Simmons of the canine world.  This otherwise cute little Pekingese has 4 1/5 inches of dog-slobber-laden papillae.  ACK, again.

If you’d like to see Puggy and his pink friend in action, here you are:

Well, I must go.  Betty White’s honking the horn.  She must need an Oreo.

 

Photo Credits:  roller coaster (declubz.com), corn flake (msnbc.msn.com), illinois outline (theus50.com), tongue dog (ohnotheydidn’t.livejournal.com).

I was driving in my furry car to see the Captain of Beans when my arm fell off.

Last night, I made the mistake of saying aloud, “I like wind.”

My husband, who never passes up a chance to be funny, quickly responded “Is that why you fart so much?”

I’m a bit of an attention hog, myself, so I deftly replied, “Yes.  And I’m really upset that I can’t put my ass in front of my face.”

This is the sort of banter that takes place in my house all the time.  But that’s not where I was going with this post.  The fact is that I LOVE wind.  The type created by Mother Nature, not Libby’s brown beans.

I so wish I could pretend to be a dog and stick my head out the car window, but let’s face it–I’d probably get my head lopped off by a mailbox or something.  Instead, I play it safe by sleeping in front of a fan.  Yes, we have central air, so it’s not because I’m hot.  In fact, sometimes I’m downright cold.  But the wind feels damn good.  Even if it is frigid.

And in the car, I never use the a/c–which is a major accomplishment.  It gets pretty darn hot and sticky here in the summer.  (Yup, I’m Canadian.  And, yes, we do get heat.  Eh?)  My husband, however, loves air conditioning.  You might think this causes a dilemma.  Not at all.  Our car is the Switzerland of automobiles.  His half of the vehicle is like a chilly, sealed-off, tomb with all the artificial air-pushing vents pointed in his direction.  My side has the window wide open and my arm flapping in the fresh, “real air” breeze.

The only problem is that insects travelling at 85 kms an hour hurt.  My arm has seen–or rather “felt”–it all.  Errant beetles, fuzzy bees, and God knows what else has been smucked against my tender flesh.  I know.  You’re saying, “How do you think the poor bug felt?”  I’m not without a soul.  I also feel sorry for the bugs.  But I cannot stop.

On an unrelated topic, I heard this joke on Ellen the other day.  What did the zero say to the eight?  I like your belt.

1)  What do you get when you cross a beetle and a rhinoceros?  Apparently, the ugliest bug ever.  Seriously, look at that thing.  It’s name is the “rhinoceros beetle” and I must say that both I and my arm were relieved to learn that it resides in the Far East.  And I don’t mean East as in Newfoundland–I mean China and Japan.  My heart does go out to my Japanese and Chinese arm-flailing counterparts though.  Having one of these careen into your arm would probably leave you…well…armless.

If you’re a regular follower of my blog–and if you aren’t, what is wrong with you?–you will know what a fascinating place Japan is.  Well, the home of the girlfriend pillow, tomato chocolate, the suction cap helmet, and so much more has struck again.

While we wimpy North Americans play with our pet Labradoodles and listen to the Snuggle Bear sell us laundry products, the Japanese are seemingly immune to such soft and cuddly façades.  They appear to prefer sharp and crunchy, particularly when it comes in the form of the rhinoceros beetle.  Pet stores sell them for $5 to $10.  In some places in Japan, you can even get one in a vending machine.  Hopefully, not the same one that dispenses Coke and Doritos.

They are also popular cartoon characters.  This makes me wonder what we are missing out on.  Perhaps, we should also embrace the insect world.  Monty the Mosquito?   David Dung Beetle?  Maybe these should be the subjects of the next Pixar flick.

2) One Beetle that I am a HUGE fan of is the Volkswagen variety.  You’ve got to love a vehicle that gives you permission to punch people.

The clever folk at the Dallas Arboretum have discovered a way to create soft fuzzy, colourful Bugs.  Meet the VW topiary Westfalia and Beetle pair.  These former street vehicles have had their proverbial guts removed and some sort of plant-friendly caging or meshing attached and “voila”–look at how pretty they now are!

This would make Herbie proud.

3) Japan is not the only place where I find strange things.  The UK has its fair share.

Meet “Captain Beany”–yup, that is what he “officially” goes by–the Curator of the Baked Bean Museum of Excellence.  Mister Beany–I refuse to recognize his self-appointed ranking–has amassed over 200 artefacts in his Port Talbot, Wales museum.  Um, he refers to it as a “virtual haricot heaven.”

So, there you have it.  If you consider yourself to be a bean fiend, this just may be the place for you.  But I don’t see any Libby’s.

In honour of all you busy-bowelled bean eaters, here is a clip of the famous Blazing Saddles bean scene:  

And, course, I couldn’t have a blog that mentioned “beans” without at least one clip from Mr. Bean.  

Photo Credits:  Ugly bug (http://life-bite.blogspot.ca), VW topiaries (http://www.dallasplanttrials.org), Mister Beany (http://www.bakedbeanmuseumofexcellence.org.uk/).

Stop eating from my toilet. Has anyone seen Bob?

My church is officially scent-free, so with yesterday being Sunday, I naturally began to ponder my own smell.  For the most part, I smell like food.  I’m not referring to the fact that I probably have a blob of this morning’s white chocolate peanut butter (I know–I’m obsessed) somewhere on my face.  Or the fact that I just had some garlic cheese dip that is more garlicky than cheesy.  (A mosquito flew by my mouth and died).

I am talking about the things that I bathe in and slather on during my daily “attempt-to-make-myself-human” routine.  Everything smells like food.  I have shampoo that smells like coconuts.  Brown sugar body wash.  My body lotion is black raspberry.  I smear vanilla in my armpits–which is an affront to vanilla, I’m sure.  I have even traded in my traditional toxin-flavoured mouthwash for citrus mint.  I consume my entire day’s caloric intake every time I sniff myself.

I’m surprised that more humans aren’t eaten by bears.  Don’t they like to eat honey and berries?  I’m basically a walking grizzly treat.  Maybe the human fascination with smelling edible explains the actions of the Donner Party.  They simply mistook Bob for a loaf of bread.

My humour has now reached an all-time low.  Even for me.

1)  I admit it.  I leave the house smelling like an all-you-can-eat buffet.  But some of the food groups are omitted.  I don’t want to smell like the dairy aisle–particularly parmesan.  I reserve that for the days my feet sweat.  Nor do I want to smell like anything from the meat aisle.  A whiff of liver paste is not sexy.  Unless you’re a Schnauzer.

But the Demeter Fragrance Company has done the unthinkable.  They have captured the smell of lobster and bottled it.  Are they freakin’ nuts?  Who the hell wants to smell like a dead crustacean?

Let me permit Demeter’s, the company that has also bottled fragrances under the names “Earth Worm” and “Funeral Home” explain.  This is their take on this fragrance (polite way of saying stench):

It is a mix of “the sea, sweet meat, and a hint of drawn butter.”  Really.  Sweet Meat?  That sounds like a bar I know.

If you want to get yourself a waft of some seafood smell, you can find it here  http://www.demeterfragrance.com/58083/704130/All-Classic-Scents/Lobster.html

And, while you’re at it, you may want to visit your nose specialist.   You’ve got something seriously wrong.

2)  I could hardly discuss toiletries and “eau do toilette” with mentioning the toilet.  It is, after all, the most important toiletry item of all.  Without it, the world would be a much messier place.  And walking would be a perilous sport.  And no one would ever wear sandals.

But I digress.

Until today, I didn’t have a “dream toilet.”  I didn’t know it was even possible.  But now I do.  I want a Toto Neorest, the Guinness World Record Holder, for the toilet with the most functions.  The Lincoln of Latrines.  The Cadillac of Crappers.

Of course, it comes to us from the brilliant minds of the Japanese.  Seriously.  I so want to go to Tokyo!

This baby has a heated seat and a lid that automatically opens and closes–hopefully not while someone is standing in front of it.  Ouch.  Not only does it clean itself (now that’s my kind of toilet) and freshen the air around it, but it also washes and dries the user.  And, wait for it.  It has a…REMOTE CONTROL!   I get the whole “cool” factor, but it makes absolutely no sense to me.  As a germaphobe, I don’t want to be handling anything that people  have been poking with their butt-wiping hand.  Ack.  Great.  Now I have barf breath.

3)  Before I brush the vomit taste out of my mouth, I might as well get through the third item in today’s diatribe.

We’ve all been to “theme” restaurants.  You know–50s diners, Ponderosa-like nods to the Wild West, and restaurants that revolve around cartoon characters.  The food isn’t always the best, but they’re fun.

But some themes are simply not meant to be around food.  Meet Hong Kong’s Modern Toilet Restaurant.  I’m not making this up.  I have no problem with the glass-covered sink tables.  Or the plunger light fixtures.  I do, however, have trouble eating from a toilet.  Even a brightly coloured, miniature one.

To make it worse, many of the menu choices are–well, mushy and poop-like.  On purpose.  Turns out this is a multi-franchised hit.  Okay, so it would be cool to see.  But that’s where I draw the line.

There.  Now I can brush my teeth.

Photo Credits:  lobster fragrance (dailymakeover.com), grater (fonemenu.com), toilet bowl (hahaha) (intelligenttravel.nationalgeographic.com).  

Your Breath Smells Like Koala, Turd, and Something Radioactive

“Don’t you hate when your hand falls asleep and you know it will be up all night.”  Steven Wright.

My husband started using a new toothpaste and it gives him the strangest breath.  It simultaneously smells like eucalyptus and Vick’s Vapo-rub.  He smells like a koala bear with a chest infection.

Don’t get me wrong.  Eucalyptus is a lovely smell–if you are a Christmas wreath.  Or a Eucalyptus tree.  And the smell of Vick’s is okay too.  Heck, I even suck their cough drops.  But those, in no way, smell or taste like their Menthol rub–not that I’ve ever tasted the Menthol rub.  I don’t imagine it is very palatable though.  And the texture would leave a lot to be desired.  All goopy and Vasoline-like.

It’s funny how some smells belong on some parts of the body and others don’t.  Baby powder scent is okay under the arms thanks to years of Secret Deodorant wearing, but baby powder mouthwash simply wouldn’t be right.  Our mouths are supposed to smell minty fresh, but not our armpits.  Are these scents assigned on a random basis or are they grounded in science?

And why would anyone want to smell like Irish Spring?  While I admit that I don’t enjoy the smell of Irish Spring soap, it surely smells nothing like the actual springtime in Ireland.  I know that a Canadian spring smells like rotting vegetation and horse manure.  Not exactly fresh and clean.  And what exactly does “Sunlight” smell like?  According to Unilever, it smells like lemon.  While, I guess lemons are a bit like the sun–yellow and roundish.

1)  Speaking of koala breath, here are some interesting facts about these cuddly-looking little fellows.

-They have human-like fingerprints.  This may explain the fact that very few crimes are committed by koala bears–they fear  getting caught.  When they master the art of wearing gloves, this may change.

-Newborn koalas are the size of a jelly bean.  Less flavourful though.

-Koalas are naturally lazy, spending up to 18 hours a day resting and dozing.  Now this is an animal that I can relate to.  Have I told you that I love my 8 hours of sleep?  If I boost my sleeping regime up to 18 hours or so, will I be cute and cuddly too?  Must run this idea past my husband for his input.

-They only drink occasionally and get most of their water from food.  I get thirsty just thinking about it.

2)  Okay, this picture made me throw up in my mouth a little.

If someone handed me a toothbrush with a smear of something brown on it, I would wonder what on earth I did to them to deserve this.  Toothpaste should never resemble something I’d find in my toilet.

Apparently, its Thai manufacturer, Twin Lotus, does not have any compunction about turd-coloured toothpaste.  Made of more than ten herbs, the Twin Lotus Original Herbal toothpaste fills one’s mouth with a barrage of tan foam and smells like astringent.  One product tester at theimpulsivebuy.com said, ” it tasted like what I imagine the sole of a boot that has walked on a herbal farm tastes like.”  Now that’s a glowing commendation.

If you’d like to try some for yourself or simply use it to fuel your next string of practical jokes, you can get some here: http://www.twinlotus.com/EN/product_detail.asp?product_category_id=5

3)  As I’ve told you before, I collect Pez dispensers.  Why Pez?  They are bright and colourful pieces of plastic with eyes.  Anything is cute if you put eyes on it.  If something has made it big in the pop culture world, odds are a Pez has been made to honour it.  And a Tweety Bird Pez was the star of an episode of Seinfeld, the best show ever.

Let me introduce you to Dr. Val Kolpakov, a Dentist from Saginaw, Michigan.  Now, I’m no anti-dentite, (sorry, couldn’t resist), but he has one of the weirdest collections yet–the World’s Largest Toothpaste Collection.

While, I can TOTALLY understand wanting to collect the ones with the cute Snoopy Packaging (again, anything with eyes), I’m not sure I really get the rest.  One dating back to WWII was made with radioactive material.  Yup, toothpaste that can make you grow a third eye.  And all that’s separating him and it is a tube and a box.  Hm.

The odd Doctor has amassed over 1800 toothpastes since he began collecting them in 2002.  This is a man who takes clean teeth seriously.  You can check out his collection for yourself at his dental office at 1227 North Michigan, Saginaw.

No, that is not a pile of Thai toothpaste.  http://seemikedraw.com.au/page/2

Photo Credits:  koala (https://www.flickr.com/photos/dmmaus/171182088/), toothpaste (theimpulsivebuy.com), Snoopy boxes (Ashley L. Conti/Saginaw News).

Flat Cows, Numbered Turds, and Bananas for my Feet

I spent the greater part of the morning using the power-washer to peel my deck.  The sad part is, it was the most fun I’ve had in ages.  Not only am I easily entertained, but I, obviously, lead a very dull life.

The truth is that no matter how old I get, water still has the potential to mesmerise me.  Seriously, I’d love to put on my bathing suit and run through the sprinkler.  Or sit in one of those inflatable duck-shaped kiddie pools.   The only thing that stops me is my fear of what the neighbours will say.  That, and the thought of being carted away in a jacket with my sleeves tied together.  Especially in this hot weather.  Wouldn’t my hands sweat?

So, playing with the power-washer is a socially acceptable adult water activity.  I didn’t even mind that my legs were splattered with renegade sheets of detached grey deck stain.  And that I got a sun burn on my shoulders.  And soggy sandals.  I got to play in the water under the guise of doing something mature and productive.  Yay me.

1)  In the past, I have featured a plethora of…ahem…unique Japanese products.  Today, I present one from China.  Canoe Shoes.

For every human who has ever had the desire to walk on water, these inflatable bananas for your feet can make this dream come true.

Yes, now you can walk and fish simultaneously (I suggest you master walking and chewing gum first).  Where oh where will he put his catch though?  Shouldn’t he have at least worn pockets?

If I am totally honest, I wouldn’t mind trying a pair of these.  But only when my neighbours aren’t looking.  You can get yourself a pair here: http://www.made-in-china.com/showroom/yuemaohkltd/product-detailAebnPfHjIEtD/China-Walking-Canoe-Shoes.html

2)  Deck debris on the legs doesn’t even register on the Things-That-Make-Me-Want-To-Vomit-ometer, particularly compared to the prospect of feces raining down on my head.  However, in Talkeetna, Alaska, this is something to be celebrated.  In fact, an entire festival revolves around this.

The Moose-Dropping Festival celebrates moose turd.  Honestly.  Artisans sell moose-poop jewellery and dung crafts.  There’s a moose lawn ornament auction.  Really.  And the highlight involves a giant sack of manure being hoisted into the sky, only to have its contents poured out over a target below.  Now each piece of poop has been lovingly lacquered and numbered (wonder what lucky lackey gets that job) and sold to the general public.  3000 in all.  And, apparently, they sell out quickly.  As a souvenir (and proof of purchase), each ticket holder gets a moose manure pin (so they can keep their crap close to their hearts) with the number printed on it.  The number that lands closest to the target wins a cash prize.  Lucky shit.

3)  Now any time you are aiming your high-powered pressure-washer at a wooden object like a deck in the hopes of removing paint, you’re putting yourself at risk for splinters.  After all, isn’t a deck just a series of giant pieces of wood?  And what makes splinters?  Wood.

Luckily, I remained sliver-free despite thumbing my nose at wood-safety.  Hm.  I guess wood-safety would involve keeping the “wood” safe from me.  I guess I was thumbing my nose up at me-safety.

I did discover, however, that the acquisition of a sliver is not the catastrophic event that I once thought it was.  Apparently, many splintery Internet folk have been rescued by Elmer’s glue.  Yes.  Merely dab a glob of Elmer’s glue on the affected area, let it dry, and peel the glue skin off.  Odds are, that nasty little wooden intruder will come with it.

And, during this lesson on first aid, I also learned that mascots can get married.  Even the flat, one-dimensional kind.  Rumour (and Wikipedia) has it that Elsie the Cow, the mascot for Borden Dairy, is married to Elmer’s own “Elmer the Bull.”  Borden’s mascot and her family (the hubby and some calves) were created first.  Borden then “loaned” their chemical division, which included Elmer’s Glue, Elsie’s husband for their packaging.  She had probably been complaining that she was tired of her idle spouse moping around the house.

  This video has made me re-think my power-washing activities.

Photo Credit:  moose turds (http://adriaandgarthtingey.blogspot.ca/2008_07_01_archive.html),

A Stick in the Eye, A Large Penis, and Ants in My Pants

I am currently suffering from the nauseating condition known as “nervous tummy.”  This explains why it is only 8:10 in the morning and I have already had breakfast (White Chocolate Dream Peanut Butter on dark rye–told you I had a PB addiction), checked the weather on the Weather Network (still unbearably humid and no rain in sight), fed the menagerie of rodents that have shown up at my door (they don’t knock, but I know they are there staring and hoping), taken my allergy pill (which has already stopped my nose from dripping snot all over my keyboard), and listened to my husband bemoan a local hardware store for an inaccuracy in their flyer (he loves flyers).

And despite all of these distractions my stomach is still churning.  At least now it has something in it to churn.

Why the pukey feeling?  As you know, I used to work as a make-up artist.  “Used to” are the operative words.  I haven’t lost the ability to apply make-up.  That’s like riding a bike.  Plus, I do my own face almost every day (and remember, I have pig eyes and freckles, so this is a major feat).  Tomorrow, I am doing the make-up for a good friend’s wedding.  OMG, I am responsible for how she is going to look as she walks down the aisle with all eyes on her.  How she will look when her groom decides whether or not to say “I do.”  And how she will look in the wedding pictures that she will pour over lovingly in the decades to come.  Just a sec, I’ll be right back…

Add mopping up puke to my list of accomplishments so far today.

When encountered with worrisome conundrums such as this, I usually try to identify the worst thing that could happen and usually it makes me feel better.  Unfortunately, today this is not the case.  Here are some of the things that I fear could happen:

  • An ever-so-slight slip of the hand could result in my mascara wand stabbing the bride in the eyeball, which precipitates an ambulance ride and an emergency eyeball surgery.  The surgery is successful (they were able to dislodge the mascara wand), but unsuccessful (she is now blind).  The groom decides that caring for a half-blind wife is too much responsibility.  Plus, the hole in her retina is off-putting.   So he flees.
  • A stray make-up brush hair lodges itself in her eyeball (I seem to have a lot of eyeball concerns) and creates a virulent infection.  Her eye turns bright reddish purple, begins to leak and puss.  Her mascara and liner runs down her face in an Alice Cooper-ish fashion.  Not only does she terrify the groom and send him running, but she loses her eyesight (again).
  • My mind suddenly goes numb (well, number than usual) and I forget what make-up goes where.  I can no longer even identify simple objects like the “nose” or the “mouth.”  The bride winds up looking like a painting by Pablo Picasso and, again, the groom runs away screaming.  At least, she isn’t blinded in this scenario.
  • I forget to bring my make-up and we have to resort to inflicting physical harm on the bride to give her some colour–pinching and slapping the cheeks until they are red, creating “smoky eyes” with our fists, and so on.  This is the worst scenario as she winds up blinded in both eyes, gets a massive skin infection due to excessive pinching, and the groom leaves the country and is never heard from again.

As you can see, I am under a great deal of pressure.  And nothing soothes the mind like learning a few stupid things.

1)  Now here is a book that every groom wishes he needed to prepare for his wedding night.  And every bride.  Apparently, having a large penis is a problem for some.  Admittedly, I nearly pee’d my kitchen chair when I came across this little gem at Amazon.

But it gets even better.  Here is the description that comes along with it:

“Here at last is the first self-help book for men with Oversized Male Genitalia (OMG), a genetic birth defect that grows the penis to absurd proportions. Every year, thousands of men are diagnosed with OMG. Sadly, most are banished to the fringes of society, victims of their own freakish length and girth. How to Live with a Huge Penis brings them an inspiring message of tolerance and hope—along with helpful information on

•  Unzipping: Coming Out to Your Friends and Family
•  Sharing Your Pain: Sexual Intercourse with a Huge Penis
•  Big Blessings: Unexpected Advantages of a Huge Penis
•  and much, much more

Complete with prayers, poetry, a daily affirmations journal, and thoughtful quotations from leading self-help experts, How to Live with a Huge Penis will inspire men of all shapes and sizes.”  (Amazon.com).

I’m sorry but this one beats the Big Colouring Book of Vaginas to hell.  No pun intended.

2) The North American wedding likely seems like a very strange event to some–the bride in white, the exchanging of rings, the throwing of rice or blowing of bubbles, followed by the happy couple driving away in a vehicle with tin cans hanging from the bumper.  But, seriously, you haven’t seen strange until you’ve seen the Carnival of Laza, Spain.

The event begins with some really strange looking dudes running back and forth (over and over again) with loud bells attached to them that clang with every step, as they whip innocent (or stupid) bystanders.  This, apparently, ushers in the fun to follow.  If you’d like to see these masochistic bellboys, go here:  

In case you missed out on being lashed, you still have another opportunity to become a victim of random violence.  Local townspeople will now throw muddy rags at you, but some will contain a magic ingredient–ANTS.  Yes, they dig up ant hills and hurl the unsuspecting insects (yes, they are victims too) at Carnival goers.  Doesn’t this sound like fun?

And, amidst all of this mudslinging (this time meant in the literal sense), someone is dressed up as a mad cow with a wooden mask, butting people in the “butts” and sexually harassing female (or Scottish male tourists donning kilts) by lifting up their skirts.  Hurry and book your fun-filled vacation of ant bites, lash welts, and mud masks.

3)  One thing I do love to fling at unsuspecting people are rubber bands.  I especially like to do it shotgun style, stretched around my thumb (the trigger) and my pointer finger (the barrel).  The slingshot way is for beginners.

But there is nothing worse than a stale elastic (or so I’ve been told).  Apparently, I should have been keeping my elastic ammo in the refrigerator.  They stay far stretchier that way.

Who knew?  Now to find a place in the fridge for my office supplies.  Right between my cold cuts and my eye cream (which I’ve been told that I should actually keep in there too, but have not because cold cream feels weird.  And I put my eye cream on before bed, so when it’s cold it just wakes me up).

Well, wish me luck and say a little prayer for me (and the bride’s eyeballs).  I’ll let you know how it goes.
Photo Credits:  Ant Throwing (thumbpress.com).

Poke Me In the Pancreas, Throw Me a Loin Cloth, and Don’t Call Me Dick.

I wish I was a dog.  Seriously, dogs seem to completely lack self-awareness.  Either that or they possess the most skewed self-images found in mammalia.  As I’ve told you before, I am short.  Five feet tall to be exact.  I put up with short jokes, have to rely on the charity of others to reach cans in the grocery store, and pay exorbitant amounts of money on having my pants hemmed.  (Thank God for capris–finally, pants that fit.  Unfortunately, they are long pants on me.  I guess if I want actual capris, I’ll have to buy shorts.)

The entire world seems to be designed to remind me that I lack height.  And that I suck at basketball.  Short dogs, however, do not have these problems.  And not just because they don’t wear pants.  Or shop for groceries.  Dogs seem to be oblivious to their height.  Rodent-sized toy varieties have no qualms about running up to Great Danes and barking ferociously at them–perhaps, saying something like “hey you, get off my lawn.”  And more often than not, the horse-sized canine will do exactly as the little dog says.

Dogs seem to have no idea what they look like.  Maybe I should adopt the dog’s approach to life.  I am six feet tall and my legs are long and shapely.  This could become my new mantra.  “I am six feet tall and my legs are long and shapely.”  

But I know this will only last until I try to reach for a mug.

Hmm…according to Wikipedia, the average height for a female among Bolivia’s Aymara people is 4’8″.  Note  to self: look into possibility of emigrating to Bolivia and likelihood of acceptance into its indigenous community.

1)  I haven’t featured a bizarre Japanese product in a while, so I thought it was time.  Meet the “anatomical” sleeping bag.  I’m not quite sure what the thought process was of its creator, but I have arrived at a few conclusions of my own.  This would be ideal if you needed to accurately pierce a specific organ of a sleeping foe.  Perhaps a dagger through the heart of a napping vampire?

While camping, it would give bears an edge on selecting human delicacies.  Hm…I feel like liver this morning.  Now where is that?  Oh, ya.  Right about here.

It also makes skinny slumberers look muscular.

This model is currently sold out, but you can put it on your “wishlist” here…http://www.japastuff.com/products/381-anatomical-model-sleeping-bag.aspx

   2)  (Time for another one of my awesome segues).  Speaking of body parts, it’s amazing the things one can learn while watching TV–even lame sitcoms.  Case in point–while “sort of” watching That 70’s Show (it never quite manages to fully capture and hold my attention), I caught Eric Foreman telling someone about a race car driver named “Dick Trickle.”  Seriously, that is his name.  Now if I had the name “Richard” and the last name “Trickle,” I never would have opted to go by “Dick.”  Maybe this guy has a great sense of humour.  Or maybe it was a marketing gimmick.  I will never forget that name for sure.

So, in case you are new to the world of Dick Trickle, here is a little bit about this man with the name that makes fifth-graders the world over giggle.  And some middle-aged women like me.

He is the short-track driver with the most wins in history.  He has logged over a million laps (I get car-sick just thinking about it).  And he has won over 1000 races.

Now you know.  This Dick can drive.

3)  Speaking of Dicks, what on earth is behind this loin cloth?  This is, perhaps, the creepiest roadside attraction I have ever seen.  And while doing this blog, I have seen a LOT of them.

This Bigfoot rendition is found in front of a gas station in the town of Vermilion Bay, Ontario.  He is 18 feet tall and weighs 3800 pounds.  And what the heck is in his mouth?  Is he smoking a giant cigar or is he chewing on a giant tootsie roll?

Apparently, Bigfoot a la Vermilion Bay was created one summer by someone who was just passing through town.  I guess he had time to spare.  Or asylums to hide from.

And to make this apparition even creepier, it is equipped with a speaker and has been known, on occasion, to speak to innocent sightseers. Maybe its maker is actually trapped inside.

It’s Canada Day, eh?

Today is Canada Day and my “home and native land” is officially 145 years old–a youngster as far as nations go, eh?  I hope you will indulge me as I dedicate today’s blog to the land of beavers, maple trees, and hockey pucks.

We Canadians know what the rest of the world thinks of us–mostly thanks to the way we are depicted in American television shows.  According to these depictions, we use monopoly money, drink a lot of beer, apologize constantly, and end every sentence with “eh.”  We’re not offended by these portrayals.  In fact, we are renowned for our great sense of humours–and spelling “humour” with a “u”, by the way.  Only in Canada, would you find currency named Loonies and Toonies.  One of our biggest exports to our southern neighbour is  comedians.  And there is an art to using “eh” correctly–and only we “Canucks” seem to have this gift.

Although it is very un-Canadian to brag, I must apologize and ask for you to humour (again with the “u”) me as I share a few Canadian facts:

-Canada is the second largest nation in the world.  But our population density is very low at 3.7 people per square kilometre.  Yes, we operate in metric.  This may explain why our American neighbours think we live in igloos and commute to work via sled dog.  When our weather forecasts say it is 32 degreesin July, this does not equate to your 32 degrees–the temperature at which water freezes.  It actually means we are enjoying a balmy 90 degrees.  Yes, it does get hot here.  We own barbecues, swimming pools, and bikinis–not just toques, parkas, and mukluks.
-We are home to the longest coastline in the world, the world’s highest tide, and the largest island in a freshwater lake.  In Canada, we do things big.  Just look at those fuzzy Mountie hats.   How much guarding can these guys do when they’ve got hat fur in their eyes?  This must have been our Queen’s idea (yes, we are part of the British Commonwealth and, on occasion, sing “God Save the Queen”)–have you seen her hats?

-We ranked 5th on the World Happiness Report–massive beer consumption and several pucks to the head will do that.

-And only 40% of us have a favourable opinion of Don Cherry. It’s gotta be the clothes.  I’d be crusty if I had a starchy collar that went up to my ears.

-We have two official languages, although the province of Quebec only recognizes one.

-54% of our nation is made up of forests and woodlands.  Yes, we have lots of lumber.  And moose.  And bears.  And maple syrup.  Yum.

This is what our flag looks like.  We have beavers on our nickels, but our Parliament has actually considered removing the giant rodent from this coin.  Apparently, it is not considered a “noble” creature.  I, personally, am fond of our buck-toothed little friend.

And Canadians can be found everywhere–on your movie screens, your TV sets, and your concert stages.  Here is a sampling of famous Canadians:

Keanu Reeves, Howie Mandel, Pamela Anderson, Dan Aykroyd, Ryan Reynolds, Rachel McAdams, Jim Carrey, Avril Lavigne, Neve Campbell, John Candy, Justin Bieber, Nelly Furtado, Seth Rogen, Willima Shatner, Shania Twain, Alan Thicke, Donald Sutherland, Alanis Morissette, Eugene Levy, Martin Short, Jill Hennessy, Phil Hartman, Paul Anka, Kim Cattrall, Nathan Fillion, Michael J. Fox, Ryan Gosling, Marty Hall, Sarah Chalke, Kiefer Sutherland, Peter Jennings, Celine Dion, Bryan Adams, Sarah McLachlan, Catherine O’Hara.

Photos:  Mounties (Wayne Cuddington, The Ottawa Citizen), Don Cherry (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images),  

Trees with Eyes, Tube-shaped Eggs, and Packages That I Haven’t Read Carefully

It is no coincidence that in no known language does the phrase ‘As pretty as an airport’ appear.”    Douglas Adams.

I hate wearing sunglasses.  I have an oddly shaped head or face or something, because they always make me look very strange.  Like a beetle on crack.  I’ve tried every type from teeny-weeny intellectual ones to motorcycle cop “you-can’t-see-my-eyes” styles to the ones with lenses the size of garage doors.  None of them give me that sophisticated Jackie-O look–no matter how many scarves I wear.

And they make my eyes sweat.  Well, not my actual eyes–that would probably land me a spot in some optical medical journal–but the space under my eyes.  All summer I look like Alice Cooper.  I realize that I could invest in some waterproof mascara, but that just opens up a whole new can of worms.

My husband’s glasses fog up a lot.  That must be frustrating.  One minute the world is a crisp vision of loveliness and “pwoff,” it is transformed into a chasm of blurriness (do you like my attempt at Mad Magazineish sound effects?)  Which raises another question?  Do contact lenses ever fog up?  Or worse, if they get cold can they stick to your nice, warm eyeballs? Think of Flick’s tongue and the flagpole in The Christmas Story.  

1)  I have recently discovered that I am an idiot.  Seriously, I am a total numpty-head.  I don’t know how many times I have endured the frustration of pulling out a sheet of Saran wrap, having the entire tube come with it, and struggling to hold on to my sheet of cellophane without allowing it to stick to itself, while I fight to return the roll to the box.  A box with a jagged metal “tearing strip” that usually winds up ripping my flesh during this battle.  It happens to me on a regular basis.  And I always blame the Saran wrap.  Or its equally frustrating cousin, tin foil.

It turns out that I am to blame.  Apparently, the thoughtful manufacturers of these products have gone to the trouble of creating a device to keep these rolls in place.  I’m just too stupid to read the packaging and make this discovery.

If you, too, are a moron–I’m in no position to judge your mental prowess–simply take a glance at the photo to your right.  See the little triangular-ish shape on the side of this (and all other) Reynolds Wrap boxes?  Well, apparently, if you push that puppy in, the roll will stay in place.  Who knew?  Okay, some of the world’s “smarty-panted” people probably knew.  But, surely I can’t be the only one who didn’t know.  Could I?  (Cue sound of crickets).

2)  I love trees.  My favourite is the weeping willow.  They’re great for climbing and their long, draping foliage is perfect for hiding in.  Maples are nice too.  Seriously, a tree that makes pretty colours in the fall AND gives us sweet sap for pouring on our pancakes.  Plus, I’m Canadian.  Maples are sort of our thing.  Check out our flag.  And our pennies.  Although you’ll have to check out the pennies soon since they have been put on the minting chopping block.

I recently discovered, however, that not all trees are pretty or stately or eager to provide us with shade.  Some are downright scary.

This “screaming tree” lives in Hither Hills State Park, NY.  I’m sorry, but if I ran in to this, I’d probably run the other way screaming.  Trees just simply aren’t supposed to look like this.  I am grateful that a very brave photographer managed to take this shot though.  Seriously.  Can you imagine seeing this through a camera lens?  Or taking your eyes off it long enough to take your camera out and turn it on?  I’d be far too worried about what its branches were up to.  Like, are they reaching around to grab me?  I mean look at the mouth!  Trees generally don’t have mouths.  I can only imagine what someone would find if they peered down inside this bark-covered beast.

But, as ugly as the American offering is, the UK has an even more horrific forest dweller.  Not only does it have teeth, but it appears to have actual eyeballs.  Or eye sockets, at the very least.

Does anyone remember the evil trees in H.R. Pufnstuf?  In case you don’t, you can catch them here….

I think I’ll go outside and hug my faceless oak.

3)  I have  simply got to go to Japan.  As you know, this is the land of square watermelons, the girlfriend pillow, and tomato chocolate bars.  And in case those aren’t enough to send you out for airline tickets to Tokyo, I have just found another draw. The Japanese egg roll.

How efficient is this?  Instead of taking the time to boil an egg and set the timer to ensure it’s hard-boiled, you simply take out your tube of egg and hack off a slice or two.  I wonder what type of bird lays cylindrical eggs?

Photo credits:

Reynolds wrap:  http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_gJCMpC3I-ng/TAkYjt80sXI/AAAAAAAAGxc/-grfoaKwtvg/s320/foil.jpg

Egg tube:  Marci Wittwer Butterfield

Screaming tree:  brothergrimm

UK Tree: David Garnham/Newsteam/Getty Images