My (not) to-do list
1. Don’t ever assume any topic is safe to discuss with my Tea Party brother. While chatting on FaceTime last week, I brought up the missing plane.
“Just imagine,” I said, “if there were more Americans on that flight, this country would go crazy.”
“This country doesn’t care about anything. They sure as hell didn’t care about the murder of a U.S. Ambassador,” Ricky huffed.
For him there was a straight line from Kuala Lumpur to Benghazi.
2. Even in casual conversation, stop calling the Affordable Care Act “Obamacare.” Stephen Colbert, Jon Stewart and Bill Maher have covered this. Democrats aren’t good at naming stuff or stopping others from renaming their programs. But Republicans are good at, well, lying, but also at playing to the uneducated masses who don’t read, think or reason for themselves – aka Fox Newsers. If the word has Obama right in it, well, it can’t be good. After all he’s a black, Muslim socialist. (Oh wait, you had them at black.)
3. Avoid hanging out with self-assured people. These smug, confident cocksures make my everyday insecurities seem positively neurotic. Give me a friend riddled with angst, self-doubt and humility any day of the week.
4. Stop beating myself up over destinasia. As defined in the Urban Dictionary, “destinasia is a noun meaning a condition you are suffering from when you set out somewhere to do something, only to find that when you get there you have forgotten what you were going for.” Everybody I know has it, hell, even my 20-year-old niece has freely admitted to it for years.
5. Break up with HBO’s “Girls.” Oh at first I was all “you go, chubby girl” in support of Lena Dunham’s witty, honest scripts and unashamed on-camera nakedness. The show had an interesting twenty-something edge. But after three seasons I have to admit I’m sick of seeing all that tattooed flesh. Even Lena acknowledged our disdain for her nudity in a gut-busting SNL skit set in the Garden of Eden. She plays Eve along with Taran Killa, who brilliantly portrays “Girls” co-star Adam Driver playing (the original) Adam. When Adam offered Eve a fig leaf to cover her blurred girl parts, she passed.
But it’s actually more than being tired of seeing somebody else’s flab. The characters are self-absorbed, but not in the endearing, Seinfeld way. Larry David somehow made us root for unemployed, chubby, loser George when he couldn’t date an otherwise perfect girl because she had a big nose.
Hannah, Marnie, Sosh … all narcissistic, predictable little sluts. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
6. Turn off HBO’s “Game of Thrones” by 8 p.m. I’m binge watching to catch up to Season Four’s debut on April 6. SPOILER ALERT – this show is as bloody and gutsy as it gets. And I adore it! Recently I made the mistake of watching back-to-back episodes well into the night. My dreams were horrifying. The only segment I remember is the one where I thought I woke up but was actually still dreaming. I got out of bed and discovered a trail of blood. I figured a rat killed something and dragged it through the house. So when the new season begins, I’ll set my DVR and watch while it’s still light out, adding a buffer between beheadings and bedtime.
7. Stop buying Cool Whip. I just learned kids have been getting high off nitrous oxide by shooting cans of Reddi-Wip straight into their mouths. Rich, creamy goodness AND a buzz? Without even washing a spoon? Done!
8. Ban big bags of potato chips from entering my house. The salt, the crunch, the grease, the pairing with just about any food and the suitability for every meal of the day. These addictive little crisps taste so good and make me happy. Right up to the moment I pour the last crumbs from the family sized bag into my gullet. I immediately feel shame and weakness. When it comes to these salty snacks, I literally can’t stop eatin’ ‘em.
9. Stop using the word literally. This overplayed adverb has been abused for years. Michele Bachmann famously spoke of Obamacare (oops) The Affordable Care Act on the floor of the House, “That’s why we’re here because we’re saying let’s repeal this failure before it literally kills women, kills children, kills senior citizens.”
Rush Limbaugh recently said, “The fact that we are living in the era historic with the first African-American president has everybody paralyzed and everybody scared. Political leadership in Washington is literally paralyzed. Political consultant leadership in Washington is literally paralyzed. Republican Party literally paralyzed. Many American citizens literally . . . “
From this day forward, the word literally is out of my vocabulary.
10. Resist the temptation to ever again enter The New Yorker’s weekly cartoon caption contest. I love almost everything about this magazine: “Shouts & Murmurs,” “Talk of the Town,” “The Critics,” the cool covers, the cartoons. But I hate the contest judges.
I’ve probably entered a dozen times over the past year. Never made the cut. Of course I don’t really expect to win as that would entail some sort of confidence on my part. But to not even make it as a finalist? They start out with three candidates for each cartoon. So that makes 36 times my clever captions were shunned by The New Yorker joke jury.
There are times I’ve been madly outdone and graciously concede. However I often lose to lame, unfunny drool. I’m hesitant to share one of my failed entries as you may agree with those humorless judges. And I honestly don’t remember the winning caption, so you can’t make a true assessment.
But here goes.
Cartoon: Two headless praying mantises are walking upright and in conversation.
Losing Caption: “Dang g-spot”