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Trumpsgiving

Thanksgiving is a time to connect with family members you likely have nothing to do with on a daily basis. These may be the same family members you unfollowed on social media after flooding your news feed with an assortment of memes:

screen-shot-2016-11-22-at-4-43-18-pm

eaglepussy

But now, here you are. Face-to-face. For a long dinner that will include lots of alcohol.

Should you discuss politics?

Well….

Remember Thanksgiving was officially designated a federal holiday in 1863 in the midst of the Civil War. Relatives fought on opposite sides, firing cannons into each other’s faces.  Imagine how awkward those Thanksgiving gatherings might have been?

brothers

But this was also the time when the telegraph was the Twitter of the day. News moved more slowly and there was no such thing as “news of the day” or “24-hours news cycle” or Dr. Phil’s giant screaming head.

Ahh. . . the good ole days. Of course penicillin was not discovered yet, but still at least Americans, for the most part, agreed on the same set of facts.

That’s what makes it so difficult to discuss politics at a Trumpsgiving dinner. You are approaching the conversation with a different set of facts fed to you by your local Google algorithm then your uncle who eagerly shared the pope’s endorsement of Trump.

politics

Best to avoid the topic all together. Stick to neutral topics like:

  • Mannequin Challenge – Now that the olds, like me, know about it, is it time to discontinue? (Answer: yes)
  • Cereal aisle in supermarkets – Too much choice or not enough choice? Possible side topic: Were Sugar Smacks the grossest cereal? (Answer: yes)
  • Other relatives – As in, do we have any relatives who live outside the states that I can possibly bunk with?

Now pass the carving knife.

Everything is Going to Be A-Okay

The United States presidential election is over. And while this campaign turned democracy into something you would scrape off in disgust from your shoe, one in five eligible American voters chose Donald J. Trump as our 45th president. That is less than the 25 percent of Americans who believe the Sun revolves around the Earth.

You may be part of the other 20 percent who voted for Hillary Clinton or the 30 percent who didn’t vote at all and are now expressing regret as you see Trump loading up his cabinet with an assortment of Dick Tracy villains. But don’t worry, everything is going to be a-okay.

How do I know this? Because I just wrote it and that’s how the spread of information works. I write it, it gets passed along and becomes truth.

Even Kathleen Parker, columnist for The Washington Post, wrote an opinion piece titled “Calm down. We’ll be fine no matter who wins” a few days before the election. The point of the piece was “I’m a rich, white heterosexual woman past the point of ever needing an abortion so I’ll be cool–like all of us.”

She also opined that Trump won’t do any of the things he said he would on the campaign trail. He will rise to the position. And she’s obviously right.

Yes, it’s true that Trump said he wanted to close mosques after the terrorist attacks in Paris, then called for banning all Muslims from entering the U.S., and then called for creating a Muslim registry, then called for suspending any immigration from nations compromised by terrorism, but he’s not actually going to do any of those things. I know Trump wants Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn to be his national security advisor–an appointment that does not require Congressional approval–and Flynn has said “a fear of Muslims is rational” and has compared Islam to cancer. And yes, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach is advising the Trump transition team and he created such a database while working under the George W. Bush administration and has said recently that Trump will be doing this. But words and actions don’t necessarily translate into words and actions, right. So it’s cool. Everything will be a-okay.

It’s like when Voldemort and the Deatheaters took over the Ministry of Magic. They became chill and worked on improving infrastructure and Muggle relations. Or I think that’s what happened, I never read the books.

I know Trump began his campaign generalizing Mexican immigrants as raping drug fiends, and in his Republican convention speech made it sound like America (i.e. white people) was under siege by murdering, marauding illegal immigrants (non-Western European people). And, true, he continued to use coded language on the campaign trail that made white supremacists swoon, but that doesn’t mean he’s going to continue that invective in the Oval Office.

Not possible.

I mean, remember how powerful it was when Trump called a pressie and announced that President Obama was born in the United States after spending five years saying the complete opposite and then blamed Hillary Clinton for starting that rumor?

That was so….presidential? Sure, let’s go with that because everything is going to be a-okay.

Sure Trump did select Steve Bannon as his chief advisor, a man connected to a news site that was a platform for the alt-right movement, a loosely connected group of white supremacists, anti-semites and men’s rights activists, among other super fun people. And okay,  Jeff Sessions, Trump’s pick for attorney general, was denied a federal judgeship because of his history of racist remarks, including but not limited to, saying the Ku Klux Klan was okay until he learned they smoked marijuana. And true, if you were to ask a police sketch artist to draw a stereotypical Southern racist, the sketch artist would draw Sessions’ face–that still doesn’t mean the Trump Administration will engage in racist behavior.

See this is what happens when you are about to hold the most powerful office in the world. You do a complete 180 and change every personality trait you have held your entire life.

It’s like the quote from that guy…was it Shakespeare? Or the really calm dude who writes the Dilbert cartoons? I don’t know….I digress…..anyway, that quote: “Absolute power corrupts no one, in fact, it makes people act like Gregory Peck in To Kill a Mockingbird.”

See? We’re fine. Everything is fine. Nothing to see here folks.

 

 

How to Make a New Year’s Resolution

Whoop-de-doo. I have a post up at the other place The Official How To Blog.

The Official How To Blog

2013 is quickly coming to a close, and with it all your crushed dreams, mediocre sexcapades, Bieber retirement announcements and dashed hopes. But there’s a brand new year on the horizon, and now is the time to set up your list of resolutions.

Follow this advice to create the greatest resolution list known to man.

1. “I will lose weight”

Nearly everyone’s New Year’s list will include the phrase “I will lose weight.” And you will go to the supermarket that first week in January and buy celery and sawdust and maybe even that Jillian Michael’s exercise ball in the shape of her mouth, and then the celery will wilt, a bird will make a nest out of the sawdust, and you will be eating a stick of butter coated in nutella on top of a partially deflated exercise ball that has become part of your ass structure. A…

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How To Work From Home

The lovely and talented Jen Tonic is blogging at The Official How To Blog today.

The Official How To Blog

Thinking about working from home? Take this short quiz to find out if it’s for you:

  • Do you want to work from home?

If you’ve answered ‘yes’ to any of the above questions, then working remotely is right for you. The following steps will help you find success in the virtual work world.

Step 1. Convince your employer it’s a good idea to let you work from home

Most people make the mistake of giving a presentation showcasing why working remotely is more productive than working in an office setting. All this does is convince your boss you hate her by forcing her to lose minutes of her life listening to your boring pitch. I prefer the Liability Method wherein you sprain your thumb in a freak copier accident, or sexually harass yourself in front of others. Legal will be more than happy to keep their “lawsuit on legs” out…

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How To Put Together Porch Furniture

Just like the work of another carpenter I know, I think my craftsmanship is almost god-like. Check it out on The Official How To Blog.

The Official How To Blog

Spring is here, and with that the obligation to do things outside and make property look acceptable to judging neighbors.

A few months back, I purchased a home in a family-friendly neighborhood. My previous home fronted a four-lane state highway and was a block away from the local hospital. This passed for landscape design:

amazingdecorIt set the perfect backdrop for the time my neighbor’s daughter decided to pour gasoline onto my driveway.

But now I must keep up with the Jones’ or the Smith’s or whatever their names may be, I’m not very neighborly. So I ordered wicker porch chairs from Target. This is how they arrived:

And this is how my amazing how-to on How To Put Together Porch Furniture came into being.

Step 1. Open box and dump out all the parts. Weep.

chairinpartsStep 2: Look for the directions.

Step 3. After much kicking of empty box, locate…

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How to Tell if Your New Followers Are Real or Not.

For some reason, I thought my increase in subscribers was due to my new legwarmers, but alas I have learned it is something else entirely.

The Official How To Blog

You may have noticed an uptick in new followers recently. This may have led to such thinking like:

“I have finally arrived.”

“That book deal is just around the corner.”

“Maybe I don’t need that job that pays all the bills?”

This is erroneous thinking–except in my case. Seriously, you should see the number of followers I have now, and I haven’t even written anything. People are really starting to get into what I’m writing, or in this instance, not writing. I have arrived, world!

But let’s get back to you. Your new followers. There’s a good chance they are not real. How can you tell?

This is why this blog exists, and why you’re following it, like all those other real followers who began following in the last few weeks. Follow these steps to determine if you’ve found a new loyal reader or soul-crushing robot bent on your complete…

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All Hail King Jerkfry

The Official How To Blog

You’re out and about, living your life. You’re looking to post a cute and snappy status update on Facebook like “Sunday? More like Wineday, amirite ladies” when your newsfeed is suddenly inundated with updates like these:

gameupdate

Oh Wildlingballs! Another season of Game of Thrones has started, and once again you will have nothing to talk about at Friday’s happy hour. You don’t get HBO. You attempted the books, but the pages and pages of the various Houses were enough to make you turn to Honey Boo Boo for brain sugar.

But not all is lost. Winter isn’t coming yet. These following steps will help you carry on a Game of Thrones conversation like a Dothraki Khal with a 48-inch long braid.*

*Full disclosure: I’ve read the first two books and just started the third and have no idea what the godswood is going on half the time or who anyone…

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Um…hi…uhhhh….so…..this is awkward.

The Official How To Blog

Today’s post is brought to you by Speaker7.

Oh…um…Hi. How are things? …um…

Well…er…how ’bout that rain? It’s been like raining with water and stuff.

So…um…I’ve been asked to write about small talk so…okay…um…I’ll do that now?

1. Introduce yourself. It will give you something to talk about for two seconds. You might be tempted to make up a name to give you something else to talk about it– “Hi. I’m Casey Anthony!”–but don’t. You could possibly run into this person again, and the next bout of small talk will be even more awkward if you can’t remember what name you gave.

2. Stick to safe topics. Some suggestions:

  • weather 

weathertalk

  • the room you’re in — “How ’bout this floor, huh?”
  • Donald Trump’s hairpiece — “So, do you think his hair is made out of urine-soaked hamster bedding?”

3. Stay away from hot-button issues like:

  • politics 

politicking

  • religion

religion

  • motherhood

motherhood4…

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How To Read 50 Shades of Grey

Alice of Alice at Wonderland has a guest post up at The Official How To Blog. I believe it mentions butt plugs so you know it has to be a good.

The Official How To Blog

Alice of Alice at Wonderland has been slogging through the literary anal dribblings of E.L. James for what feels like an eternity. There is only so much “Fair point, well made Miss Steele/Mrs. Grey” and “Laters baby” one can read before one feels as if they’ve been sucked into a Groundhog-Day-like reality of which there is no escape.

If after reading the above paragraph, you still desire to pore through the monotonous ramblings of an author who knows neither plot or character development, then Alice has prepared a handy how-to on how to slog through this pile o’crap.

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Have you wondered what all the fuss was about with 50 Shades, but been scared to read it?  Of course you have!  With this simple guide, you can read 50 Shades of Grey and possibly keep your sanity.

How To Read 50 Shades

  1. Download it to your e-reader.  Then if someone…

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How To Take The Joy Out of Education

Heather from Becoming Cliche has a guest post up at The Official How To Blog today!

The Official How To Blog

Heather of Becoming Cliche joins The Official How To Blog today to tackle the issue of super-duper education policy that has thankfully turned our public school students into bubbling machines. You’ve got a circle that needs to be colored in? By all means, grab your nearest eight-year-old cuz that kid knows what’s up. Incidentally that same child might not know what’s up in the sky because science is optional.

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1) Determine the best way to measure success.  This means test scores. Duh! There’s no such thing as potential that can’t be measured. If it ain’t on the score sheet, it ain’t there, folks. 

2) Use test scores appropriately. Preferably to pigeonhole kids so we know where to focus our attention. No sense pouring money down a sinkhole, after all. Bad score? No Honors English for you next year. What? You didn’t take  Honors English this year? Sorry, no…

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