Friday, February 22, 2013

A Story Never Told...

A friend of mine sent me THE FUNNIEST story about a woman who, for the first time, attempted to wax her bikini area with a DIY kit.  It was some funny shizzle, I tell you what.

I emailed back a quick description of why I don't wax my eyebrows and days later I realize it's a story worth telling the world. Why the hell not?

A few years ago, several years after I should have noticed, I realized that atop my eyes was a unibrow not unlike Bert (Ernie's life partner) and something needed to be done.

Most women figure this out in their 20s BEFORE the surging hormones of pregnancy turn your plural brows into a singular hedge that needs a good trimming. 

Me, well, I'm always a little slow to notice things.  Like the hairs I discovered the other day that showed up in an area that suspiciously looks like a beard.  According to the kids, they've been there.  AWHILE.

Back to the wax.  So I don't remember if I had a gift card, or a coupon, I'm that traumatized.  But I do distinctly remember the act of getting my eyebrows waxed.  Having given birth to two children, I figured what the hell, it can't be any worse.

I knew the process, I was aware of what was coming. Sticky warm goop, press some paper stuff on, cooling time and then let-er-rip.

It's sort of like that time I watched real life in the ER and saw an actual c-section being performed.  Kind of gross, but it really didn't seem that bad.  Until I had one.

Now comparing childbirth to eyebrow waxing to most folks might seem, I don't know, a little extreme?  But remember the giant hairy unibrow I mentioned earlier.

Knowing what's coming, doesn't make it any easier, as was the case with the aforementioned c-section.

First of all, when the wax went on, she was all "so tell me if that burns at all, is the wax too hot?"  Have you ever had your child stomp on your bare foot wearing their biggest clodhopping shoes and you can't even form a syllable because it hurts that freaking bad?  Yeah, so um, on to step 2.

Apparently my silence (and tears) didn't indicate the appropriate level of pain I was experiencing, so she picked up those little paper/fabric thingys and smashed SMASHED them onto the wax.

You know, I would hate for the wax NOT to stick to it when it's go time, but honestly pressing 500 degrees of wax that was already burning the shit out of my forehead and eyelid was a bit extreme in my opinion.  Gently should work, right?

I kept kind of waiting for her to put a stick in my mouth like in the "olden days" during childbirth (see, so many similarities) so I could clamp down on it through all the pain.  But no, not so much.

After waiting the appropriate amount of time, meaning just long enough for the wax to cool and my skin to probably start to blister, it was time to remove the strips.

When the woman approaching you to remove the wax actually appears to use part of your face as leverage, you kind of have to know you're screwed.

If you've ever seen the 40 Year Old Virgin you will understand (on a much smaller but nontheless equally hairy scale) what transpired in that session.

I'm not sure if she was a kind Christian woman, but if she was she's likely praying for my soul to this day.  And if you know me, you know I'm pretty foul mouthed as it is, but in this instance I even made myself blush.

But the fun really began AFTER she took the cooling thing off and came at me with the tweezers.  Tweezers?  WTF?  There couldn't possibly be any hair left for her to pluck, and yet, there she was.

After all, the whole freaking reason I decided to get my unibrow waxed was so I didn't HAVE to tweeze, something I'd tried and it made me cry like I was watching the end of Bridges of Madison County.

I channeled my inner child birther, pretty sure I did some lamaze, and finally the session ended.  Exhausted, bleeding and sore (just like childbirth, eh?) I took my former unibrow out of there, tipped the nice gardener who was so kind to rip the shrubbery on my forehead out by the roots and never looked back.

To this day I do not tweeze and I do not wax.  I will never ever ever wax any part of my body, not even my new beard and mustache.  Sorry hubs, you're just going to have to share your razor.  But please don't borrow mine if you want to "manscape" it simply doesn't go both ways.  Unlike Bert & Ernie.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

There are no words....but I'll come up with something

There are no words that can accurately detail the horror I felt when viewing the following commercial:

Skechers:  SHAME ON YOU.  Shame.  On.  You.  I've never purchased a pair of Skechers of any kind and now I positively never will.  Granted, I'm not their target market, but my kids are and hells no, I'm not giving them a dime of my husband's hard earned money.

Part of me doesn't even want to write this post and link the TV ad because then I feel like I am perpetuating this train wreck of a marketing concept.  At first, when I felt the initial rage welling up inside me, I thought perhaps it's menopausal Maude coming out, it really couldn't be that bad could it?  So I watched it again, and yes, it's that bad.

I am so upset I honestly don't even know where to start.  Do I start with the fact that this ad is objectifying young girls who've barely started to wear bras?  That it makes them look like little mini-prostitutes? 

Do I start with the fact that it, in fact, appears that "Daddy" might possibly be a wink-wink reference to a pimp?

Do I talk about the fact that I find it disgusting that this TV spot insinuates how young girls can dress up in their daisy dukes and ask their Dads for money to buy teenage hooker shoes and he'll hand over a wad of cash because he's A) clueless about the fact that the shoes cleverly disguised as hideously ugly tennis shoes are really high heels and B) he's trying to get rid of the girls as quickly as he can because he's getting a boner over her friends in their stripper clothes? Ugh.

I've watched the ad a couple of times and there are just a few inconsistencies I'd like to point out.  And, for the record, my nine year old is almost 5 feet tall.  I will buy a pair of these shoes the moment I win the Miss American Pageant contest.  Which is, you know, like NEVER.

For one, Skechers is operating under the grossly outdated assumption that Dads have any money.  Last time I checked, from the moment of conception any and all spare change is given to, stolen by and spent on the every whim of our children.  Pretty sure any spare wads of cash are stowed safely in my kid's piggy banks.

Skechers also appears to assume that these daughters are either A) the product of a broken home or B) they have no mother or C) they are being raised by a pack of wolves.  Or ladies of the night (remember that thing about the pimp?). 

Because I swear to you that I can count on one hand the number of mothers I know that would ever ever ever ever ever in the history of ever and all that's good and holy ever ever ever let their daughter out in public looking like that: NONE.

Also, do the creative folk at Skechers REALLY think "DADDY" is that stupid?  That he wouldn't notice the shoe is slightly oddly shaped or think his teenager has hit a growth spurt all of the sudden when she bops home in her zebra striped "tennis shoes" paired with what can only be described as a "Pretty Woman Halloween costume?" 

Men, God love them, are far more observant than we give them credit for.  Him: "Hey Maude, when did you get those boots?"  ME:  "Oh these?  I've had them FOREVER, I just don't wear them very much."  Him: "Really.  When did you get them?"  Me: "OK, they were on clearance, like only $20, and I had to get them, they were normally like $80!"  (translation: $29.99 on clearance from $59, jussayin). 

Damn him and his keen observation skills.  I mean seriously, the man can find the one gray hair my Preference by Loreal hair color missed from across the room.

And seriously people.  As a woman, I've spent well over half of my life topping out at just a hair over 6 feet tall.  You mean to tell me I suffered all those "stretch" and "Larry Bird's daughter" jokes as a kid only to grow up and discover that in this crazy parallel universe girls actually WANT to be taller now?  WTF?!

Skechers totally missed the mark on their target audience with these shoes too.  No joke, I showed my nine year old (who wears a size 5.5 thankyouverymuch) and she was completely disgusted by the ad.  Her words were: gross and inappropriate.  I love her so much.

And the last time I checked, animal prints, chunky earrings, clothing items made of netting and bright florescent colors were locked in a time capsule known as the 80's, and also VH1's Behind the Music episodes.  And occasionally at Justice (a store for girls that makes me want to pop a Valium and down a bottle of wine before I ever step foot in there).

I actually think that Skechers might even be the teeniest bit embarrassed by their own product.  There's a website designated specifically for these shoes, but the funny thing is I was hard pressed to find the Skechers name anywhere on it: 

I swear to you I wanted to smash my g-damn computer speakers because every fricken time I clicked on a link on this website I heard the unmistakable sound of "cha-ching", eluding to the fact that Daddy's are nothing more than a cash register. 

Maybe to some girls they are, but seriously, I wanna be a fly on that wall during the brainstorming (or in this case brainshitting) session that this "whore in training" marketing concept came from. 

My guess is that they were locked away for an entire weekend, told they couldn't come out until they came up with a winning concept and in a fit of desperation hatched this hapless egg thinking they would get a break and instead Skechers rolled with it.

I'm willing to bet a pair of legwarmers, most of the team has now fled the country.

I could go on and on about this company, the ad, the concept, but I find that I've devoted far too much time and ink on what amounts to a campaign that thinks it's OK to dress our daughters up like call girls and inappropriately use their budding sexuality to manipulate money out of their fathers.

Hey Skechers, here's another idea that seems to be in concert with your branding:  why don't you offer a free "temporary" tramp stamp with every Daddy's Money streetwalker shoe purchase?  That's gold right there.

Hey, somebody let me know if they start doing that?  You know they will. Maybe I can collect some royalties....

Friday, February 1, 2013

The Rules of Life, According to my Children

I love my kids, I really do.  They are sweet, kind, generous thoughtful....clearly they take after their father.  They are also, at the end of the day, children. 

And that means that, well, kids will be kids and as much as we love them, they frustrate the living shit of out us.  Daily.  Hourly, even. 

And, at this very moment I hear them arguing and fighting about God knows what, with the door closed.  So, being the BEST MOM EVER (not) I'm letting them duke it out while I write this post.

Here are their rules for life, from their perspective, in no particular order:

1.  If I ask you something over and over and over and over and over and over and over I know you'll eventually wear down, give in and give me what I want.  That's why I relentlessly ask the same friggin' question 20 times or more, even though you say no.  Every. Time.  Just give it up already, Mom, will ya?

2.  If I say I'm full, and there's a half eaten dinner on my plate, what I'm saying is you suck as a chef and this food is crap.  I won't eat it and will swear I'm stuffed to the esophagus, yet, you must give me a snack 20 minutes later when I wander in and tell you I'm starving.  What I WANT you to believe is that I have the metabolism of a hummingbird, but I won't tell you I actually think you are trying to poison me.

3.  When you tell me to go outside and play, I'll drag my feet, stomp around, pretend I'd rather play inside and make a lot of heavy sighing sounds.  But, once I'm out there, the secret is out: I'd REALLY rather be outside than inside the stuffy house playing with crappy old Lego's and barbies whose hair has been "cut & styled" so there isn't any left.  You'll see, because when you call me BACK inside, I'll drag my feet, stomp around and make a lot of heavy sighing sounds.  And it will take you at least 20 minutes and a bribe of a treat to get me indoors.

4.  When you ask me to put my clean laundry away, just know that unless I'm supervised the WHOLE FREAKING TIME, I'll A) hide my hangers, B) stuff my clothes in the dresser, closet, under my bed and in the linen closet to avoid actually putting anything away.  And, I'll ASK YOU where my crap is when I can't find it, because you should know better than to let me put my stuff away unsupervised.

5.  Unless you hide, under lock and key, things you don't want me to "borrow" (like your really expensive printer paper) we will conveniently forget that you've told us 8,000 times and will use your good paper manufacture three dozen paper airplanes.  And we'll totally have a fit when you put them in the recycle bin.

6.  We are expert negotiators.  You may not know this, but we are.  We will negotiate to the gnat's ass our bedtime, how many bites of dinner we have left to eat, which shoes to wear and how long we can play on the computer, iPad, iPhone or Wii.  And we always win.  You just don't know it.

7.  All the things you have purchased for us, like toys, that are stored in our bedrooms, lost their excitement the moment we opened the box.  They are boring and we don't want them anymore.  UNLESS you threaten to donate them, and we'll play with them for hours.  For one day.  And then they'll be boring.  AGAIN.  Sigh.

8.  We know that arguing about our chores for several minutes at a time does not mean we get out of the aforementioned chore, we DO know that it raises your blood pressure and makes you more likely to throw us in time out, which inevitable prolongs the time we have to actually START said chore.  That's how we roll.

9.  When is comes to brushing teeth or washing our hands we'll tell you until we're blue in the face that we've done one or the other.  You MUST KNOW that the ONLY WAY to VERIFY completion of the task is the smell test. Nine times out of ten we haven't brushed or washed.  And it's YOUR fault if we don't.  'Cause you didn't check.

10.  We know we're cute when we're sleeping.  We count on it.  So we're not in as much trouble for items #1-9.  And even though we make you want to sell us on Craigslist sometimes, we do love you.  This is how we show it.  By taking you to the very brink of insanity, to the point of no return, to where all you want to do is pour yourself a tall one and try and remember the days of no children and then we POUNCE, give you a big hug, a messy kiss and tell you we love you and then you feel all warm and fuzzy and remember why you had us in the first place.  Boom.  Done.  Don't even bother to deny it.