Happy Gnew Year All Ye Gnerds!

As Gary Gnu would say: “Happy Gnew Year all ye Gnerds.”

Make no mistake — we Hominid’s have a lot to be proud of. 2012 was like some Remo Williams obstacle course forcing us to leap from and balance on one wobbly doom-beam after another:

A moon-sized asteroid hurtling toward earth, Iran’s nuclear threat, the Mayan apocalypse, the fiscal cliff, homicidal maniacs on shooting sprees, Honey Boo Boo, and most ruthless of all, Pizza Hut’s proposed pizza-scented perfume.

AND then, Master Chiun sheepishly turns off the lights and makes us do it all again, from the beginning:

But here we are. Stronger than ever because we survived, standing at the cusp of a brand new year ready and able to kick ass and take names. And, while I used to think New Year’s resolutions were a cheap marketing ploy invented by the health club industry —

I’ve come to see a grocery list of life goals to attain over the next 360 or so days as good, plain mental housekeeping.

So, without further adoodley do — here are my resolutions for 2013:

– Get Carl Kasell to the do the home voice message on my answering machine.

– Meet the Click & Clack Brothers

– See any or all of the following animals LIVE in their natural setting:

grizzly bear, mountain lion, elephant, sugar glider, Tasmanian devil, giant land sloth, barrel owl, humpback whale, wild boar, gecko, glow worm, gray wolf, and wooly mammoth, the last one requiring…

woolymammoth– Build a time machine

– Live in the present

– Eat more leafy greens

– Learn to play the hurdy gurdy, ukulele, air guitar, spoons, and or kazoo

– Sharpen my survival skills; read: increase my survival skills from NIL to at least 1. This may include, but is not limited to:

building a fire out of 2 sticks, charming a snake, jarring my own jam, pickling my own yam, learning to read a NON-digital wristwatch.

– Believe in the positive, except when it involves the results to a pregnancy, breathalyzer, and/or STD-test

– Consume fewer things that are wrapped inside other things that are then deep fried

– Stop looking up the extended weather forecast on my smart phone while driving

– Have more patience

– Download “Patience” on iTunes

– Take pleasure in the little things: flea circuses, sea monkeys, hotel shampoo, airplane mini-bottles.

– Stop watching “Dexter” before bed

dexter– Dance more; this does not include pretending to sweep, mop, vacuum, wash the windows, and/or walk on a treadmill while on the dance floor. I’m talking learning the Pasodoble here.

– Stop being scared of the following:

soft pretzels, toe shoes, Costco, Siri, removable shirt collars, ear wax candles, potpourri, AND the untapped, underlying animal madness buried deep within all human beings.

– Stop buying items with any or all of the following attributes:

Has squirrel, robot, dinosaur, Voltron, or MacGyver stencils; is a tea towel, is a tote bag, is crocheted, macraméd, shrink-y-dinked, or etch-a-sketched; is made out of legos, paint chips, colored duct tape, coconut shells, or old soda cans.

– Join my local Quaker chapter for the monthly “Artist Way” meetings

– Become a working member of the local co-op

– Make new friends, but keep the old, one is silver and the other’s gold.

– Get up on stage to perform in front of a LIVE audience; this does not include standing on my bed with a hairbrush microphone and reading aloud to my cat, however constructive his feedback may be.

poppyaudience– Give up the ghost on a “My So Called Life” reunion OR of ever finding out what Bill Murray whispered in Scarlett Johansson’s ear at the end of “Lost in Translation”

– Become a mystery shopper to satisfy spy fantasies

Befriend more people with beach chateaus

Befriend more people with country chalets

Befriend more people with any French-sounding second homes

Befriend more people with second homes in France

– Stop Googling at the dinner table

– Be more adventurous: Going to bed without putting my retainer in is not the equivalent of girls gone wild.

– Start my anti-foodie magazine called “LARD.” It takes the “petite” OUT OF Bon Appetite. First issue columns to include:

Feedbag fashion, buffet etiquette, and Why Buddha is Always Smiling: Because He’s A Tubby Tub

– Memorize all the words to “We Didn’t Start the Fire”

– Get more serious about working out. Eating a Cliff bar and sitting in my gym’s sauna does NOT qualify as an anaerobic exercise.

– Stop measuring my life against the monthly Anthropologie catalog. In the real world, it wouldn’t be feasible to place your wrought-iron bed at the base of the sea shore ANYWAY. Can you say rust erosion OR rogue wave?

That about does it for now. Wish me luck!


Mailbag Monday: Seren-DUPE-ity

mailbagWelcome to Mailbag Monday. This week’s topic has to do with staying on the right side of the searching-single-lady morality line. 3, 2, 1, and action:

Dear Nerdy Romantic,

“Is it unethical to cause a minor traffic accident in an attempt to meet the really cute guy in the truck behind you?”

This is a prime example of what I like to call Seren-DUPE-ity — a situation in which every step to meeting a guy is pre-designed and plotted by you. He along with friends, family, future offspring, and whomever else you had to pay off along the way — however — know the experience as FATE.

It was, as they say, “in the cards” …. EXCEPT that you stacked the deck.

It was, as they say, “destiny” EXCEPT that you snuck up behind Cupid as he was preening his wing feathers, knocked him out cold, stole his bow, and shot an arrow “straight through your lover’s heart” all by your lonesome.

oh no you di'intNow, I had to be really careful not to answer this reader’s question too soon. My knee jerk response was,

“Girlll! You gotta check your head before you wreck his flat-bed.”

But, then I thought about it some more and considered all the possible crazy acts of manipulation a woman could do to snag the man of her (lucid) dreams. Many hours and countless disturbing Google images of sexually cannibalistic black-widow spiders eating the heads off their male lovers later — here’s what I came up with:

Commence: Dance of Chart Joy

  • X axis: Act of manipulation
  • Y axis: Correlating degree of cray-cray

* Color blocking coincides with Department of Homeland Security threat levels

** Full definition of each act of manipulation beneath chart

*** Click on chart for larger image

Mis-FAKE-N Identity: Good, clean, taradiddling. Goes like:

  • You spot a cute guy in the Large Breed dog-food section of the grocery store. You walk up to him and say,

“Brock [or any other macho-sounding guy’s name] is that you? Oh my God! It’s been so long. What are you doing in [your city]?”

  • Not Brock:

“The bad news is: I’m not Brock. The good news is: I would love to have dinner with you tomorrow night after I get done tagging sharks.”


Amelie: Like the movie, this involves adorable, doe-eyed acts of winsome capers. Probably includes any of the following accessories:

  • Bottle rockets, a trail of bread crumbs, garden gnomes, a Dutch windmill, decoder rings, 2 Speak-&-Spells, and one old curmudgeon neighbor made of glass.



  • You’re stuck in non-moving “Carmageddon” like traffic. Little old-ladies with walkers strapped to the backs of giant land sloths pass you by in mocking laughter. In your rear-view mirror, you see that the guy in the truck directly behind you is uber-hot. So, at the next 3-inch roll forward, you tap on your brakes. His front bumper crushes your license plate and takes out a taillight, or 2.
  • You get out. He gets out. You smile. He smiles. You exchange insurance information and phone numbers.
  • You get back in your car. Your phone rings. It’s him. You spend the remaining 3 “rush” hours sharing your life stories and planning the details of your “second date” (the 1st of many inside jokes!)


Nanny 1: Goes like:

  • He’s a handsome widow left to raise his angelic 3-year old daughter on his own.
  • You answer his ad for a live-in “domestic assistant.”
  • 1 healing year later, you have managed to restore the beauty of his home, and also repair the hole in his heart.


Roofie 1: You slip a date-rape drug into his drink and take him home to “make love.”


Stalkholm Syndrome:  Goes like:

  • Abduct him from the parking garage at his work
  • Hold him hostage in your IKEA-built, GORM storage solution wine cellar
  • Several months pass. He fully processes all 5 emotional stages of captivity.
  • You are no longer his prison guard; You are his salvation


Roofie 2: 9 months after slipping him a mickie, you knock on his door and introduce him to his newborn son/daughter.


Nanny 2:

  • He’s a happily married man with 2 young kids.
  • You answer his ad for a live-in “domestic assistant.”
  • 1 week later, you cut the brake lines to his wife’s car.


Bunny stew: Fatal Attraction.

The End

So, in the grand scheme (ing) of things, the reader’s act of seren-DUPE-ity really isn’t that bad. Is it the “right” side of the searching-single-lady morality line? Well, on the chart, it sits just above the “WILY” category of cray-cray.

Threat level: “Low” to “Guarded.”

If green/blue means GO for you, then I say GO — and be sure to invite me to the wedding… OR character testimony at the civil court lawsuit, as the case may be.