Groundhog Meteorology

*Yes, of course the names have been changed. You can’t live in a town the size of Dublin and expect people not to know your business. In fact, half of you reading this will know who Meredith and Stacy really are.

Yesterday morning, Meredith, Stacy and I did our usual Blackbird coffee routine where we sit for an hour solving the problems of every desperate diva of Dublin, tackling serious issues like who’s a closet alcoholic, who has new boobs, controlling husbands with widening wastelines, church drama and getting our biceps to look like Michelle Obama’s. With each topic we heaped on “bless their hearts” like raw sugar on our coffees.

After about half an hour, talk turned to the weather. Ya know it’s a low drama day in Dublin when a hen party turns to safe default topics that early. “Do y’all know if the groundhog saw his shadow yesterday?” asked Meredith. “I don’t think I can take six more weeks of cold weather.”

“He did see his shadow,” answered Stacy, who never misses a news story, be it about healthcare reform or the ghost of Michael Jackson. “But I can never remember what that means. If the groundhog sees his shadow does that mean spring is right around the corner or it’s going to stay cold?”

“Shadow means cold, and no shadow means early spring,” explained Meredith, who seemed to have memorized this the way a child learns “lefty loosy, righty tighty.” “I never understood why, though. He sees his shadow because the sun is out and we think of spring when we think sunny days, and winter when we see clouds, in which he wouldn’t see his shadow. I don’t get it, but I guess you can’t argue with a groundhog.”

“I don’t really think it’s scientific,” I finally chimed in. “I mean, I’d stick with the Weather Channel if I were you.” Both Meredith and Stacy looked at me with incredulity as if I’d just denounced the Holy Trinity. “Well,” said Stacy taking offense to my shrugging off of Punxsutawney Phil’s ominous prediction, “he’s been doing it for years and been amazingly accurate.”

“I’m just saying I wouldn’t put 100% of my trust in an oversized woodland rodent. It’s like taking my stock portfolio over to Mrs. Cooper, the palm and Tarot card reader to predict the Dow Jones.” I could see that I wasn’t gaining popularity with my friends and I may just not be invited to the next coffee talk session. In an effort to save myself, I tried to offer a look to the bright side. “Well, ya know Punxsutawney Phil is up in Pennsylvania. Maybe that just means that THEY’LL have six more weeks of cold weather. Wouldn’t it be hard for him to say what’ll happen here in GA?”

“Angela,” Stacy sneered, “there are groundhogs all over the country that predict the weather for their areas. We’re not in Punxsutawney Phil’s region. We have our own representative.”

“Oh! Wow.” I’d been TOLD. Clearly, I was stepping out of line on a topic about which I was clearly ignorant. This led to my brain bubbling over with questions…that I didn’t want to ask Stacy and Meredith for fear of further alienation.

A full 24 hours later, it’s still bothering me. I’ve obviously got to do some research on the subject of groundhogs, Groundhog Day and how what I’d assumed was just a ceremonial holiday actually indicates our global weather patterns. Maybe Al Gore should consult with groundhogs in researching the greenhouse effect and global warming. They’d probably see HIS shadow…and laugh.

Here are my questions in no particular order, just in case you’ve been wondering the same things or have any insights you’d like to share.

1) If there are regional groundhogs, how are they chosen? Are they elected officials? I’ve never seen “GROUNDHOG” listed on any ballot I’ve ever cast. Maybe it’s not a people vote; maybe only groundhogs vote. And if they do, then do several groundhogs run for this highly coveted office, spending lots of donated money on their campaigns? Do they serve four year terms? Can they be impeached? Can their decision be overturned if they didn’t see their shadow but an onlooker did? That leads to another question. What are the qualifications to being the Groundhog Day groundhog? I supposed good eyesight would be at the top of the list. Also the ability to discern their own shadow from that of a groundhog shaped bush that they may be standing next to. Do groundhogs have to take meteorology classes? Is it a paid position? Can I nominate a groundhog that I think would be good for the job. I mean, heck, it’s one day a year. Who wouldn’t want those hours? If there are regional groundhogs, why don’t we ever hear of the one in Georgia? I’d like to know his (or her) name. It’s probably something like Sonny or Bubba or Jimmy Ray.

2) And what about Punxsutawney Phil? He’s been the official USA seasonal prediction rodent since I was a child. Is he really old now, or have there been a whole string of Phil’s like UGA dogs and Morris the 9 Lives cats? Does Phil live in a posh underground lair with a wetbar, a jacuzzi and lots of sexy female groundhogs ready to serve him,paid for by the government? Or, does the mayor of Punxsutawney just go into the woods early morning on Feb 2nd and nab the first groundhog he sees? Then he takes the terrified animal back to Gobbler’s Knob amid marching bands and TV cameras, where it urinates on him upon spotting its shadow which now frightens the poor critter to an early death?

If #2 is accurate, then I’m surprised PETA hasn’t gotten involved protesting unfair labor practices. Does Punxsutawney Phil get a salary? benefits? woker’s comp for on the job injuries? Are there any groundhog labor unions to keep them from being exploited?

Okay, time to get to work answering these oh so vital questions. I’ll post my answers soon. I know you’re just as concerned as I am.

Posted in feb 2, groundhog day, groundhogs, holidays | 2 Comments

James Takes Three Stabwounds in the Shoulder. No Charges Pressed, Except by Doctor.

In a postage stamp-sized hospital cubicle, I sit across from my husband James. Judging from his relaxed visage, thanks to an IV bag that contains liquid Valium or Tequila, He’s a little more comfortable than I am. He’s wearing a baby blue, sleeveless hospital gown that shows off his clean-shaven shoulder. I married a guy with more fur on his body than Chewbacca. That baby smooth shoulder just isn’t right. But, we all know that hair removal is standard procedure before going under the knife, or the Swiss Army scope, in this case.

I open my laptop. “Do you have wireless Internet here?” I ask to no one in particular. “Hell No!” laughs Carolyn, a strawberry blond nurse who seems to rule the outpatient surgery center with a Cracker Jack sense of humor. “The hospital’s making budget cuts right and left, don’t even have remote controls for most of the TV’s and you’re asking for wireless? Sorry, Honey, this isn’t the Ritz,” she laughs in an acidic, yet warm and likeable tone.

Dr. Wells, a super happy 50-something anesthesiologist walks in lightly swinging a brightly colored plastic sledge hammer toward James. Apparently it’s his joke for all patients, something he ordered from, if it exists. “Hello, Mr. Wright, this will only hurt for a second,” he announces, missing the fact that my husband’s last name is Weight. We’re used to that. Everyone does it, even though “r” and “e” don’t have anything in common except for their employment as letters. After putting aside the hammer, Dr. Wells explains the whole anesthesia procedure, rattling off the names of a few sleepy-time drugs and warning James not to drive today because he could get a D.U.I.

Dr. Wells is so animated; it’s ironic that he makes a living putting people to sleep. He should be wearing muted shades of beige and speak in a constant monotone, without any laughter. I think Ben Stein and most golf announcers would make good anesthesiologists.

A few minutes later, Dr. Baggett, the surgeon, enters and draws a large purple X on James’ right shoulder, as if playing an exaggerated game of tic-tac-toe. Because I watch too many operating room error shows, I find considerable comfort in his action. The child in me wants to grab the marker and draw an equally big O on my husband’s mid-section. I resist the temptation, knowing that the doctor is supposed to be playing “Operation” instead. He leaves quickly, to set up that game, no doubt. “Care to draw an O?” James asks, clearly reading my mind. That’s one of the things I love about being married to him.

Just as I’m thinking that a installing a revolving door might be a good idea, Carolyn comes back in holding a syringe full of R-O-B-I-N-A-L. She spells it slowly for me, explaining each move she makes. I’ve told her I’m a writer and that I’m documenting the day my husband’s shoulder get s fixed. Carolyn has received this information with excitement, as if I’ve just told her that I’m producing a Dr. Oz episode of the Oprah Show.

“This is to dry his mouth out and raise his heart rate,” she says to me only, as if James is 4 years old and I’m his mother.

“Why do we want to dry out his mouth?” I ask. “Well, we don’t want him swallowing too much back there, now do we?” she responds as if everyone knows that swallowing during surgery, especially shoulder surgery, is just a terrible idea all around. I can think of some instances where swallowing isn’t advised, but surgery would’ve never crossed my mind. As the syringe empties, James’ eyes become droopy; his mouth slacks a bit. He starts mumbling about playing golf, getting our son Andrew out on the green with his new putter. “Putter” comes out like “puh-dzuh.” Carolyn neglected to mention that the medicine would also put him to sleep.

“Time to go, Mr. Wright,” says Carolyn. I take this as my cue to retreat to the waiting area. I kiss James, tell him I love him and watch her roll him toward the OR.

Now I’m sitting here, watching a NatGeo show on Anthrax poisoned hippos. In Africa, more humans are killed by hippos than any other animal. I guess that’s old news.

After a short eternity has passed, Dr. Baggett enters the waiting room unabashedly wearing golfing attire. While practicing his swing as he tells me that my patient is ready to go home. ‘He’s not awake yet, but you can go ahead and get him dressed.” Uhm, wow. Do you have a forklift I can borrow?”

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Today I went to the gym.

This morning, after dropping Jack at preschool, I drove to the gym. It wasn’t because I wanted to workout. In fact, I’d have just as soon written algebraic equations based on the condiments in my refrigerator or attempted potty training a manatee as going to the gym. But it’s what I do. Go to the gym. Everyday. There’s nowhere else I have to be. I’m lucky that way. But it feels hollow. No job to stress about. No PTA activities today. Not even a parole officer awaiting my urine specimen.

I think the distance between First Methodist Preschool and Fairview Fitness Center is probably about a mile and a half, though my last name is neither Garmin nor TomTom (and I’m glad. Weight, spelled this way is bad enough.) During the drive there I felt as if Depression were tailgating me in an unmarked car threatening to commandeer my vehicle and cut off my oxygen with its life sucking grip.

Click here to download my book, Just Kidding (not really) to read the rest of this and 60 other funny essays about life, marriage, kids and being neurotic. 

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Backdoor Bargains and Bactrian Camels

I’m cheap. Okay. I admit it. While some of my best friends wait around salivating for the newest J Crew catalog, I’m in Ross sorting through their latest shipment of Ralph Lauren seconds. These polos are only one-third of average retail price. The rider is missing from the logo and the left sleeve is four inches longer than the right….
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Notes from a Narcisist: there’s a place for ugliness and it’s not the fast food drive thru.

This needs to be addressed.
Sometimes a topic speaks to me, begging to be written about. It camps out until I sit down at the keyboard and exhorcize it from my brain.

Occasionally these topics are so controversial that even Geraldo Rivera and Anderson Cooper wouldn’t dare to approach them. However, I’m willing to take a tough and straight forward look at the human injustices that surround us, the ones that we don’t dare speak of at the dinner table for fear of offending someone less attractive. After all, God made them that way and they can’t help it.

Oh yes they CAN. And if they choose not to, then they shouldn’t work in the food service industry. Forgive me. I know that’s harsh. There are plenty of occupations practically begging for ugly people to apply—such as security guards, corrections officers and mad scientists’ laboratory assistants.

Some of you are saying “Hold on, I’m not following you.” Have you ever driven up to an Arby’s menu, completely starving, ordered your food and then in anticipation waited for your turn at the window?

Yes, I think we all have.

Have you ever gotten to the window and beheld a person (and I use that term lightly) so physically unattractive holding your food that you suddenly lose your entire appetite as well as your oatmeal from breakfast?

Click here to download my book, Just Kidding (not really) to read the rest of this and 60 other funny essays about life, marriage, kids and being neurotic. 

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Cats: Stealthy, Enigmatic, Easily Insulted, Obsessive-Compulsive

It’s a sad commentary on one’s life when they can find nothing more exciting to write about than their pet cat. I should make a New Year’s resolution to become more exciting. Perhaps I’ll start a life of crime as a jewel thief, except that I’m terribly accident proned and not overly secretive. Maybe I’ll become a modern day Evil Kineivel (yes I know I misspelled his name, but you still know who I mean) I’ll start by pole vaulting across the creek in my backyard. Then I’ll work up to the Oconee River, Then the Strait of Gibralter. It’ll all be mapped out in my five year plan.

But tonight, with no pole in sight, I sit here quietly observing my cat, Anakin, a large silver long-haired male about eight months old, which makes him about 17 in cat age. (Yes, I know it’s only supposed to be seven cat years for every human year, but how does one account for the fact that they’re considered full grown at a year old? Seven year olds aren’t adults Don’t argue with me!.) Anakin has been meticulously bathing his left front paw for the past 15 minutes. He hasn’t touched the others. This specific limb doesn’t look particularly dirty. From the attention he’s giving it, one would think he needs a squirt of Spray n Wash and some Heavy Duty Tide. Maybe, like the three little kittens, he soiled this mitten eating pie. I don’t know, but if he keeps up this OCD behavior, he’ll need a real mitten because he’ll have no fur left on it.

Everyday or so, I run the pooper scooper through Anakin’s litter box. When I do, it never fails! He can be down by the creek disemboweling a squirrel. He could be in the top of a Live Oak. He could be wooing the calico female who’s been sending out mating signals. But as soon as he hears the scooper hit the sand, he’s magically standing there in front of the box, as if he’s been shot out of a rifle. He stands there staring at me, a sulky resentful sneer across his face. I’m sure if he were human, his arms would be folded and he’d be tapping his foot. The look he gives shows outrage, as if to say “I can’t believe you’re throwing that away! Do you know how long it took me to produce that! His face follows each drag, each scoop and each drop, back and forth until I’m done. His look shouts “You idiot, you’re throwing artwork into the garbage. All my efforts, all my best work is now garbage, because you can’t appreciate talent. If the DOG produced this, you’d have it bronzed, but who am I, just a lowly cat. There’ll be no more still-warm chipmunks left on YOUR doorstep. I’m going down to the Tate’s house to live.”

Even though Anakin is obviously smarter than Kelly, his canine counterpart, and he’s supposed to be afraid of her, he adores her. Even though she’s 110 pounds and could swallow Anakin like a piece of sushi, they’re best friends. They bathe each other, a nightly ritual. I wonder if he’ll show her the soiled left paw. Kelly doesn’t like any other cats, though. The rest of them are still fair game and definitely chase worthy. The longer she keeps them tree-ed, the better. Last week, Kelly began barking at the window, so I let her out where she took off after Silver-Bell Tate, a sweet gray and white male. As I walked out on the porch I could see that Kelly had him high up in the old elm tree. Jumping and barking, with her head tilted skyward, she was clearly having the time of her life threatening the poor neighbor kitty. Disturbed by all the commotion, Anakin left his napping locale and sauntered toward the tree to offer help or pass judgement. As he approached the elm, Kelly stopped barking long enough to acknowledge Anakin by touching her nose to his and quickly licking his head. Then, she proceeded to taunt poor Silver. What I found incredibly funny in the ironic sense, is that Anakin relaxed on his haunches, watching the whole spectacle as if it were a thrilling movie. I wonder what passers-by would think. Here’s a huge dog barking her lungs out at Cat #1-elm dwelling, terrified, potential dog dinner, while Cat#2- same color, same size, sat right next to the dog, unthreatened, unharmed and unafraid, entertained. I wonder what Silver Bell was thinking. “Hey, wait, Cat! You’re supposed to be on MY side!”

For more tales from the feline side, check back later. Or pray that I get a life soon.

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Elizabeth Garman, our In-Car GPS Shrew

There’s something so refreshing about having another female in the car to pick on my husband’s lack of navigational ability coupled with his refusal to follow directions. Her name’s Elizabeth and she’s a Garman GPS (the smart alecky, neurotic and slightly rageful model. Hey, it was being discontinued and an excellent price). I’m not sure why we named her Elizabeth, but she’s kept me company on many a road trip, sighing loudly and hissing “Recalculating” in her prep school tone whenever my husband misses an exit. She always says “recalculating” whenever he doesn’t follow her directions. Overtly it means, “you decided not to take the route I chose, so I’m now put to the task of finding the next best way of getting you there.” Lately, though, the snippy way she’s been blurting it out clearly means more, like “YOU ARE A COMPLETE FREAKIN’ IMBECILE WHO HAS OBVIOUSLY NEVER BEEN ABLE TO FOLLOW A CLEAR DIRECTION IN HIS LIFE!!!!!! YOU DON’T BELONG ON THE FREEWAY. YOU BELONG ON A CAGE. DAMN YOU! YOU CRO-MAGNON LOWER LIFE FORM!!!!!!!!!!” (I’m paraphrasing.)

After a few silent seconds, her voice returns, exasperated, yet composed. If we could see her, I’m sure she’d be rolling her eyes at my husband. She starts again “turn right at Exit 22. Mountain Industrial Parkway (and if you have any brain cells whatsoever, you’ll do what I say this time.) James is on the phone impressing his boss with his financial knowledge. Exit 22 passes by without so much as a nod to the right on his part.

As her voice returns, I picture a scornful, aristocratic, late 40’s, somewhat attractive woman with large diamonds and even bigger hair about to scream at the top of her lungs in frustration. The vein in her forehead camouflaged with Lancome foundation and pressed powder is about to explode, spewing her rage at incompetent men all over the inside of my Saturn.

“RECALCULATING” She more chokes than announces. He’s done it this time. Any time now a well-manicured hand will burst through the steering column to mangle my husband’s jugular vein.

A few more seconds of silence. Hanging up from his call, James chirps “What did I miss?” as if he’s coming in from a golf game. Just then a haggard voice, tired, defeated comes from the GPS. In just above a whisper, she starts. “Alright, James, you waste of perfectly good vital organs and a Social Security Number. Listen to me this time or just turn me off, I can’t handle it anymore and I’m out of Valium and Scotch. Turn right on Exit 24. It’s Talmedge Expressway. Do you think you can handle that? Do ya? DO YA?” because if you can’t, I’m done.

Pretty sweet! It’s like I’ve outsourced all the frustration of dealing with my husband’s innatentive driving. If only I could have a “Toilet Seat Elizabeth” and a “Pick up your damn socks off the floor Elizabeth” and a “Stop Snoring, for Christsake Elizabeth.” Maybe I’ll get to work inventing those.

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Okay, I’m a horrible speller. Here’s all the stuff on the last misspelled attempt at a new blog.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Balloon Dresses Popping Up Onto the Fashion Scene
When I found a bag of 50 extra stretchy, brightly colored balloons leftover from my son’s recent birthday party, I thought of using them as BB gun targets, or having a helium karaoke party, maybe even performing my own Angioplasty (insurance companies these days are so picky about what they’ll cover). But designing a balloon party dress somehow never made the list. I’m not talking about those floaty, bubbly satin numbers that Paris Hilton is always photographed wearing into Hollywood night clubs with names like Vitamin X and Teflon. I’m talking actual squeaky, blow up, rubber balloons here.According to Internet fashion news Web sites, balloon artists like Ori Livney and Steven Jones (you’ve heard of them…right?) are no longer satisfied with wowing four year olds by twisting balloons into light sabers, crowns and poodles. They’ve upped the ante for all to follow creating blown up, rubber dress couture (that undoubtedly squeaks terribly when you move). Using hundreds of partially inflated balloons, these designers are piecing together wearable works of art that are popping up all over.Here are some examples. The two-piece sunflower themed outfit (right) is quite versatile and can be worn to many events like garden parties, kids’ birthday parties, sun worshipper festivals and Milan fashion shows that feature clothing that no one in real life actually wears. Made from somewhere between 5,000 and 7 trillion yellow and brown balloons, it’s sure to be a crowd pleaser.
If you’re planning a wedding and searching for that perfect, one of a kind, gown that will have everyone breathless (because they had to help blow up your dress) choose a design like this one. However, you’ll want to stay away from anything sharp until the honeymoon begins.
Every fall, plaid makes a comeback on high school and college campuses. If you want to stand out, try wearing this ensemble with knee socks, a leather backpack and lots of black eye-liner to class. Avril Lavigne and the Michelin Man will be seriously jealous. Note: This also doubles as a flamenco dancing pirate costume (in case you were looking for one).I’m simply blown away by the creativity of balloon fashion designers, as I’m sure you are too. However, before you go out and replace your current wardrobe with an inflatable one, take caution and consider the following.1) While wearing balloon clothing, you can no longer play with your pet house cat, porcupine, hedgehog or puffer fish.2) You’ll want to avoid your cactus collection.3) No playing darts!4) If you’ll be making your own balloon dress, resist the urge to fill them with helium. One designer floated off and was never seen or heard from again. However, she may have recently been picked up on a satellite orbiting Jupiter.5) Take a hint from Janet Jackson. In case you have a popping wardrobe malfunction, please, PLEASE wear underwear.6) Static cling can present a problem. Be sure to pull your hair back so it’s not standing on end. Also no doing laundry in these dresses. You don’t want to make a grand ball entrance with your husband’s black socks stuck to your balloon dress.7) I hope you’re not the active type. This isn’t a sweat suit you’ll be wearing. No running, jumping, somersaults, cartwheels, games of Twister, playing Leap Frog or even sitting down. You can pretty much just stand there. I think spinning around is probably okay as long as you don’t get dizzy and fall down.While balloons as a fashion material probably won’t replace cotton or polyester anytime soon, they make stunning conversation pieces that will last for at least one wearing (as long as you follow the suggestions above).
Posted by Angela Weight at 5:06 AM 0 comments

Smile Models. It’s a Fashion Show, Not a Funeral
I’ve been following the glitzy pomp and progress of New York’s Fashion Week 2008. Through all the parading of high style clothing and accessories, all I can think about is why don’t runway models smile?Are they all uniformly tee’d off about something that we, the public are completely unaware of? Are they mad about having to wear outrageous clothing items that individually are worth more than my car? Perhaps it’s because they haven’t eaten in three years. It can’t be that the job is too stressful. I mean these women get paid small fortunes to walk short distances in a climate controlled environment. What could they possibly have to be irritated about? Yet most of them present a face that ranges somewhere from slightly aloof to full throttle PMS.After an exhausting five minutes of research with my friend Google, I found the answer. And it has nothing to do with what the models are thinking… or if they’re thinking at all. According to highly educated scientists called runwaymodelologists, who’ve dedicated their lives to studying the habits and characteristics of this misunderstood species of homo-sapiens, models are TOLD not to smile. (A bit of trivia–Runwayus Modelis is the first human species to successfully walk upright in seven inch stilletos). Back in the stone age of modeling, when runways were made of dirt, the fashion bosses all agreed that if their models went strutting out onto the catwalks wearing toothpaste commercial grins, audience members would be too busy smiling back at them to notice the apparel that they were modeling. So smiling was officially denounced. Any model caught uttering the word “cheese” or exposing even one tooth would be suspended without pay and told to “wipe that smile off your face.”That really is the truth, even with all my expounding and exaggerations. Models aren’t supposed to smile because smiling is considered a distraction from the true purpose of the fashion show….the clothing.Ahh, now that we have that answer out of the way, we can get on to even bigger questions like why light bulbs are packaged in thin, flimsy, open ended cardboard, while solid, sturdy Fisher Price toys are entombed in layer upon layer of plastic, and tied into their boxes by more wires than are found in a Georgia Power substation.But, that brings me to another question. If we’re supposed to only be looking at their outfits, then why do models have to be gorgeous and skinny? Why can’t any old gal be a runway model. Anyone with no teeth or who hasn’t been to the dentist since the first Bush administration would be a perfect runway model because they probably don’t smile a lot anyway.At runway model tryouts, do the judges say, “alright, gorgeous, let me see that frown! Now scowl! How ’bout a glower! a sulk! a grimace…like when you have gas and are trying to keep it in.” Work it, baby. Poke that bottom lip out! Wow, you look thoroughly pissed off. You’re hired. When can you start?”
Posted by Angela Weight at 5:04 AM 0 comments

Johnny James Stop Using My Phone Number…It’s Not Yours Anymore. That’s What Happens When You Don’t Pay the Bill.
Lately I’ve become an unwitting answering service for collections people looking for some guy named Johnny James. He once had my phone number and gave it to every lender who stupidly issued him credit, all 937 of them. They now harrass me and my husband in the evenings. The persistent ones try to wear me down asking over and over if I’m sure I don’t know Johnny and where he is. They think he’s my derelict brother who’s hiding out in our kitchen cabinets. They think that if they interrogate me long enough I’m going to hand the phone over to Johnny who’s been standing there the whole time sipping brandy out of a crystal snifter that he never paid for. Like I’m going to suddenly realize, “Oh, you mean THIS Johnny James. Yeah, he’s right here. Hold on.”I’ve started calling them back and asking if they’ve heard from him yet. “Hey, Sue from Bank of America, did you ever get ahold of Johnny because I have messages for him from Chase, Citibank, Washington Mutual (the high interest rate division), In the Hole Credit Card Company, Failure at Life Auto Loans, Blind Bob’s Rent 2 Own Recliners, the Family Jewels Pawn Shop, Kidneys 4 Kash, and some guy named Louie Ballsmasher who wants da money he lent you.If any of you good Laurens Countians know Johnny James, I’m sure he’s a swell guy. But for goodness sake, don’t co-sign on anything for him and tell him to stop using my phone number.
Posted by Angela Weight at 4:59 AM 0 comments

Bakugan…Saving the Universe One Toss at a Time
Last week, while doing pick-up at Northwest Laurens, my seven year old son Andrew shot out of his classroom like a lightning bolt to deliver my newest mission. “Mom, we have to go to WalMart right now and buy Bakugan balls!””Baku-what?” I asked as I checked my shopping list where I found cotton balls and tennis balls, but none of the mysterious Bakugan variety.”Mom, we have to go now! All the other boys are playing with them and I’m the O–N–L–Y one in class who doesn’t have any!””Poor, deprived child.” I mourned. “I sure hope DFACS doesn’t find out about this.””Mom, we have to go NOW!”There’s no reasoning with a child who has Bakugan on the brain. So I did as I was told and drove straight to WalMart, directly to WalMart. I did not pass GO. I did not collect $200. As we dashed to the toy department, nearly running over the fabric department clerk, I took note of the expectant gleam in Andrew’s eye…as if he were about to meet Bakugan in person, or warrior, or droid or whatever he is. Once we found the right aisle, which Andrew went straight to as if he were being directed by some Bakugan powered GPS, I learned all about Bakugan balls, the Bakugan game and how important it was that my son join the ranks of Bakugan players all over Laurens County. I dropped $20.00 on four chunks of plastic and some magnetic cards. Where’s the “SUCKER” stamp for my forehead?For you parents out there, who haven’t heard of Bakugan (Lord, hep you) here’s a little summary. Bakugan Battle Brawler balls are small magnetized plastic orbs (about the size of an extra large cherry, or a small plum or my husband’s thumb). In the Bakugan battle game, players toss their balls onto magnetized cards which trigger the spring-loaded magnets in the balls to react and morph into action figures. Are you lost? yeah, I figured. This is probably one of those things you have to see for yourself. The player whose Bakugan battle figure (which used to be a ball) scores the highest, gets points. There is math involved. So I guess it can be deemed educational. It’s kind of like playing a game of Sci-Fi marbles. Andrew won’t explain all the rules so I wind up losing every time. After doing a good six minutes of research powered by Google and watching a 10 minute anime video, I became fluent in the language of Bakugan (which I will teach at West Laurens High School next year (just kidding!)The Bakugan phenomenon began in Japan as an anime cartoon where everyday, ordinary kids learned that they had special powers to fight the evils of the universe in the form of magnetic game cards. Wild-haired, bug-eyed pre-teens with names like Runo, Marucho, Shun, Alice and Dan battle against other worldly bad guys. The whole concept is strangely similar to Power Rangers, Teen Titans, Ben 10, Star Wars and any other cartoon series where good fights evil with a gimmick.Yes, your kids have to have them. So run to WalMart NOW. Nothing shows parental love like $5.00 plastic springloaded magnetic balls that will probably break between three and six days after purchase. One day, I’m going to invent something like Bakugan or Webkinz. It must be a great feeling to laugh all the way to the bank as naive parents are hurredly navigated by their obsessed kids in the throes of consumerism. Well, I’ll leave that for another blog entry.To learn more about saving the universe with Bakugan, visit To watch a full length episode, visit
Posted by Angela Weight at 4:53 AM 0 comments

Old Post: He Said She Said, VP Debate style
Disclaimer: The quotes, statistics and general content of this editorial cannot be counted on as true and shouldn’t be used as source material by any person attempting to impress others with his/her knowledge of politics.It’s now 54 minutes into the verbal tennis match of disagreements between Sarah Palin and Joe Biden. So far the only things they’ve agreed on are their mutual respect for Israel and that both of their jokes about being the vice president bombed. Palin and Biden’s impeccable memories for recalling specific voting records, legislature and proposed program details are amazing. What’s even more mind boggling is that one’s recollections of the same events, records and programs are completely different from the other’s. Kind of like an old married couple….my parents, even. They’ve spent nearly an hour disagreeing about everything and not giving us, the American people, much hope that Washington will be “new and improved by January.”Biden: “Obama sounded the alarm on the sub-prime lending crisis a full two years ago while standing on the steps of the Capital building with Barney Frank, drinking a Starbuck’s mocha latte with cream. McCain didn’t realize there was a problem with sub-prime mortgages until a few months ago when he was leaving the White House men’s room.”Palin: “Gosh darn it, Joe, you gotta be careful with your facts. Barak was drinking a vanilla latte and John wasn’t leaving the men’s room. He was at the water fountain. But one thing the American people need to know is that John McCain is a maverick who supports families across America.Biden: “A maverick? I’d say that when he voted 59 nine times to increase spending on the toenail clipper excise tax, he behaved more like a dissenter than a maverick. That’s a difference the American people need to be aware of”Palin: “No, he was a dissenter when he voted 8 times against the skunk spray alternative fuel initiative. He’s been a maverick the rest of the time. It’s true. Look it up for yourself in the Senate Yearbooks where you’ll see McCain was voted “Class Maverick” and “Most Likely Not to Concede” 72 years in a row.”Biden: “I have to take issue with that. It was Obama who voted 18 times against the skunk spray bill. McCain, in the end voted for the skunk spray bio fuels bill because it included an item promoting tax breaks for off shore manufacturers of pole vaulting equipment. And according to my records, McCain didn’t begin calling himself a maverick until the movie Top Gun was released in ’86.”And so it goes. 90 minutes of bickering about nonessentials. This is going to be a loooooong 30 something days until the election. And can someone please tell Sarah to say NU-KLEE-UHR? She confidently rattled off the name of Iranian leader, Ahmadinejad numerous times without stumbling even once. But nuclear was too much for her. I’m now going to see what Brit Hume has to say about all this. For more trivial nonsense, keep reading my blog.
Posted by Angela Weight at 4:50 AM 0 comments

Designer Bandages Make Delightful Boo Boo’s

Before I launch into today’s cool and unique fashion must have, I’ve got to throw out a question that’s been bugging me now for years. Who can explain what the difference is between a boo boo and an ouwie? (I don’t even know if I spelled that right). Are they simply synonyms for something of the abrasion/contusion variety on the skin? “My older son, Andrew, calls them boo boos. Jack, my three year old, swears they’re ouwies. Is there a discernable difference. Do ouwies bleed more, leak more puss? Are boo boo’s scarier?Whether you call them ouwies or boo boo’s, if you have one, chances are you need a band-aid to stop the bleeding and hold the Neosporin. My kitchen cabinet currently stocks bandages of the Scooby doo, Sponge Bob and just plain Anglo-Saxon fair skin variety. Isn’t there something better out there?Well, this morning, after severing a major artery with the can opener, I did a Google search and found a plethora of bandages for both the novelty lovers and fashionistas in your life. (Note to self: Finish scraping the dried blood off the computer mouse.) At way-out Web sites like,, and you’ll find bandages themed for pickles, pirates, breakfast lovers, cowboys, sushi, luscious lips even our lord and savior, Jesus Christ, who could’ve used a few bandaids himself there at the end.
So, next time you drop a hammer on your foot, slam your finger in the car door, drag a sharp paper edge across the tender part between your thumb and index finger, or peel that hang nail just a little too far, don’t reach for a boring old skin colored band aid. Everyone knows it’s not your real skin anyway. Make your ouwie, boo boo proud with a one of a kind adhesive like these. They won’t take the pain away and will probably still hurt like the devil when you rip them off. But, hey, you might get a few compliments, maybe even a date with that hot guy who has the designer suede eye patch and Viking themed colostomy bag.
Posted by Angela Weight at 4:45 AM 0 comments

The Rules of Purse Shopping
I’ve never modeled a purse in the mirror and wondered “does this make my hips look big?” But, apparently I should’ve. According to, which I stumbled upon today while looking for Frosted Flakes coupons, the right purse can help your figure immensely. And the wrong purse can be disastrous. Just like shopping for a skirt, a bathingsuit or a sweater, you should consider your figure, height and weight, and do some mirror modeling before making the purchase. For a handbag? Yes!Here are a couple of points to remember when browsing the handbag tables. First of all, the shape of your purse should be inversely proportional to the shape of your body. Secondly, the size of your bag should be directly proportional to your body shape. Don’t get these confused or you’ll miss the whole point of this article.Here’s a handy guide:Shape -opposite than bodySize -same as bodyGot it? Good.For example, if you’re really tall and thin. Never choose a tiny, flat, square-shaped bag. (This is why you never see giraffes with purses like that. They already know this rule) Tall people look better with bigger, more rounded bags. Slouchy, hobo bags are great for the Uma Thurmans of the world because the curves balance out their flat, willowy, non-shapeliness.If you’re short and small framed, definitely take advantage of smaller handbags. You know the ones that will only hold a couple of Tic Tacs? No, kidding. But, you petite gals can take advantage of all the cute little swing alongs popular today. If you’re a buxom, full-figured gal, who veers toward the plus-size racks, choose a large pocketbook too. Its size will look more proportional next to yours.Something else to keep in mind is what body part the bag is next to when you’re carrying it because the purse will draw attention to that feature. If you’re pear-shaped, you definitely don’t want a shoulder bag that swings at your hips. If you’re large busted, don’t carry a short-strapped bag that hits the side of your chest because it will draw eyes directly to your upper cargo. If you’re really wide around the middle, wearing a fanny pack amounts to fashion death.Ya know what, though? I think wearing a fanny pack AT ALL amounts to fashion death. I think fanny packs are the El Caminos of the purse world. They’re hideous and shout “I’m a complete fashion failure. I probably wear black socks and white loafers with my madress shorts and veiny legs to the beach!….with my 1970’s Polaroid camera.” and I have a comb-over or a gray mullet hair style…or both.” Yeah, Folks, this is serious. Just say no to fanny packs. Okay? I’m glad you agree.But the point I was making there before yielding to the fanny pack tangent, is if you’ve packed away too many Oreos and Heinekens, don’t accent your mid-section.Okay, enough about purses and how to choose them. I hope this little lecture has been helpful today and remember “friends don’t let friends wear fanny packs.”Angela

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5:32 PM and all’s quiet. How long can this last?

I can’t believe I’m sitting at my computer savoring sweet tranquility, just the sounds of my fingers on the keys. Not even the neighbor’s normally vocal, pint-sized yard guards I affectionately named “The Yappers” are at their posts. My two boys, ages 7 and nearly 3 have both fallen asleep spontaneously, undrugged, unthreatened, lying sweetly in my bed. it’s like I’m in a whole different realm, one where I can think, without an interruptive wale from Jack or Star Wars battle sound effects spewing out of Andrew. It’s so quiet in fact, that I can’t think. My mind is muddled.  need coffee. You see I came to the computer thinking that my muse might meet me here, that with no noise in the house, all the brilliant thoughts and creativity I’ve been holding back for the past few months would come shooting out of my fingertips onto the keys like Van Gogh’s Starry Night taking shape as if it were a color by number. But I see it’s not that easy. Everything that people have been telling me about writing and writing and more writing is true. I can’t sit down at the keyboard once every so often when all is quiet and spit out a masterpiece. I need discipline, determination, dedication, direction, and many other d words just waiting to spring forth from the pages of my dusty thesaurus…..damnit. There’s a good one. 

It’s now 5:42. Wow, ten minutes of writing without stopping. That’s an incredible feat for me. See I’m a closet writer who’d like to call myself a writer and knows that I’d be a great writer, but I never actually produce anything. I used to, but now I just talk about writing as if some invisible force keeps me from it. How I long for it, but the evil demons keep my computer, pen,s pencils, paper and all other writing supplies locked away. The truth is my attitude is an insult to all the writers who wake up and write every single day even on days where they’d rather scrape corns off their toes, they still write. That’s what I need, a good corn scraper.

I have to go clear the Smirnoff bottles off the fridge shelves. My dad’s coming for dinner. More later……..I promise. I’ll even get out the thesaurus.

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Butt logo casual wear should really be limited to those with butts worth looking at

I think this might be my first ever blog that’s not about writing dilemmas. I’m taking those first wobbly steps toward writing, not about myself and my own insecurities, but about a problem that could become an epidemic spreading across America through the back doors of Bingo halls, nursing homes and my local CVS pharmacy.

You know those gym shorts and sweatpants that have become increasingly popular over the past few years? I’m talking about the ones that lead you to stare at the wearer’s butt without even realizing it because you’re reading a strategically placed message or glimpsing the logo of your favorite sports team. I’m sure you know the style. No, I don’t own any, not one pair, nor have I ever tried any on. Since my butt has both the shape and depth of a non-curving wall, I’ve decided not to draw attention to it. However it is flat enough to sport an 8 x 10 advertisement without any of the letters falling into the cracks, or I guess the crack. I still have only one. How about you?

Anyway, to the point of this alarmed entry is that some people are wearing derriere message shorts and pants who really shouldn’t. No, I’m not talking about all those unfortunate teenage girls and over forty women who because of either blindness or halleucinations think they look good in them. I’m referring to the rotund seventy-five year old gentleman sporting size small, neon orange jogging pants with an Illinois logo stretched uncomfortably across his buttocks. The logo itself looked terribly embarrassed as if it was wondering “How did I get here? God, please don’t let the Indiana gym pants see me like this.” Why would a 300 lb. senior AARP member want to dress like his high school sophomore granddaughter? To make the image even stranger, the man was getting out of a truck sporting bumper stickers promoting the NRA and Ducks Unlimited. I don’t think other NRA and DU members wear 15 year old girls’ gym clothes.

My fear is that this wasn’t a one time, fluke kind of viewing. What if this sort of thing starts happening all over the world? What if trendy stores like Aeropostale and Charlotte Russe become flooded with old men in search of halter tops, spaghetti straps and hot pants? What if my dad comes to visit me wearing a strapless sundress?

It’s all too much for me to bare. It’s just wrong, wrong wrong wrong. I think I’ll write a message on my concave behind about the kind of people who should be allowed to wear butt message wear.

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