Today I have a very special guest for you, Tracy from Orange and Silver because, as she says, life almost never rhymes. Which is true although when I first “met” Tracy over the internets, I told her blog’s name should be Orange is the New Silver because that’s how I am. Obnoxious. And good at naming things. She maintains she started her blog way before Orange is the New Black ever saw the light of day. Still, I can’t help but always think of her blog as Orange is the New Silver.
But her blog makes a good point. Life hardly ever rhymes, and orange and silver are the only words in the English language that don’t rhyme (or something like that). Although rapper Eminem says you can rhyme with orange. Then he makes up a rap in which he attempts to rhyme something with orange. I saw it on “60 Minutes” once. I really don’t know why “60 Minutes” had Eminem on, but when finished his rap, I said, “But that didn’t rhyme.” So despite what Eminem thinks, nothing rhymes with orange.
Tracy’s right. As she is with most of the questions below. But before we get to that let me tell you a little bit more about Tracy. She has four children, a husband, a full time job, a dog, and, apparently, a death wish. She blogs in an attempt to maintain a tenuous grip on what is left of her precious sanity. Her days are spent alternately reminding her children to throw their cheese stick wrappers in the trash, and enduring the searing injustice that the UK has seen all of Downton Abbey Season 5 months before it will air in the US. In her free time, Tracy does nothing, because she has no free time. Someday she will launch a campaign to rid the world of glitter.
Why did you decide to start your blog, and did you have any idea what you were getting yourself into?
I was a food blogger for a few years before I became what I would now think of as a humor blogger (which, for lack of a better definition, is how I think of myself). Food blogging is a hard racket because you can’t just think, “Hey, I’ll post about fudge today!” You have to have a recipe, and you have to have tested that recipe, ideally more than once. So the lead time is long to get a post up, and while it’s true that means you get to eat a lot of fudge, sooner or later CPS comes to visit you because your children have brought fudge, and nothing but fudge, in their lunchboxes for three weeks in a row. Also, you have to keep buying ingredients to make fudge, so that’s expensive. At least with humor blogging, my subject matter is free—my own life, my own shortcomings, the shortcomings of others, including my children, anything that annoys me (which is a lot). And while I may still get a visit from CPS, it’s not because of fudge. Or not exclusively because of fudge.
How long have you been at this racket?
If you count the food blog, since about 2006, give or take. Orange & Silver is considerably younger, only about two years (I think—I’m too lazy to go see when I actually created it).
OFM: No worries. I feel you.
Do you have a blogging schedule? If so, what is it? Does it help? Does it change? Do you want to stomp on it, and tell people to go away – you have enough to do?
I try to post twice a week. Sometimes I’ll end up posting three times if I am struck with an incredible inspiration. There’s usually one “around” the weekend (Friday, Sunday night, or Monday morning) and one sometime in the Wednesday/Thursday timeframe. In some ways it helps, but in other ways it adds stress. Knowing on Tuesday or Wednesday that I’m coming up completely blank for my next subject makes me start to panic, and I scramble to find post subjects anywhere I can. Of course this is when my children become impeccably behaved–thrifty, clean, reverent, and all that shit.
OFM: Incredible inspiration? What’s that?
Tell us a little bit about your background: What did you do in your previous life or still do in addition to blogging? I guess what I’m getting at here is what uniquely qualifies you to be a blogger other than a dollar and a dream?
I was an only child, so I spent a lot of time observing human behavior (because there’s fuck all else to do when you haven’t got anyone to play with), both my own and that of other people. Which basically just means I watched people and drew conclusions about their actions. Because I have a sense of humor (or so I tell myself), the conclusions I drew were very often amusing ones (amusing to me, at least). Both of my parents were writers (my dad actually got paid—he was a news writer and later did freelance, for my mom it was more of a hobby) so storytelling was a prized skill when I was growing up. There was almost nothing significant that happened in our family that wasn’t distilled into a story and told and retold, usually thousands of times, usually to my unrelenting boredom. My dad even did a stint doing radio commentaries on random personal topics a couple of times a week on a local public radio station for about five years when I was a kid, which earned him a modest fame. I’ve been hearing and telling stories in some form or other my whole life, many of them crafted to be amusing or get a laugh, so the idea of putting my own into a human-readable format and pestering the world with them wasn’t such a stretch for me.
Do you have any kids, how many and why? Why would you do that to yourself?
Four—a boy 11, twin boys 9, and a daughter 7 (although she may be 8 by the time this goes up). I hated being an only child, and swore I would never do that to my kids. So I didn’t. As a result, I can’t tell you how completely batshit it makes me when one of them whines, “There’s no one to PLAY with.”
OFM: So you over compensated with some extra kids?
If you don’t have children but do have some other wild animal living in your home, what is it & how many of them do you have?
We have one dog. He and I maintain an armed truce.
Which of the following statements (and this could have major implications for our relationship going forward) would you be more likely to agree with: Yes, people can have granddogs. Or, No, it’s physically impossible for people to have grandpets of any kind. This question is based on a bumper sticker I once saw, and I’m just trying to tell who among us is crazy. The answer will give us all the information we need.
Are you familiar with “Hidden Mickeys”? These are carefully placed objects or cleverly designed artifacts that appear to be in the shape of Mickey’s head, or to contain Mickey’s head. They’re all over both Disneyland and the parks in Walt Disney World. (Stay with me here—I promise there’s a point.) When you sign up as a Cast Member, they explain them to you, and the most critical rule is, if the Guest thinks it’s a Hidden Mickey, it’s a Hidden Mickey! This is my position on “grandpets.” If you think it’s a grandpet, it’s a grandpet!
OFM: Interesting info about the Hidden Mickeys, and, no, I never heard of that before most likely because I would never entertain the idea of becoming a Cast Member. Even in light of that most unusual tidbit, wrong answer.
What is your social media platform of choice? What social media or tech thingy should be wiped off the face of the earth?
I adore Facebook, and I have an affection for Twitter (although it should be clear from this that brevity is not one of my strengths, and thus Twitter is a challenge for me).
Although I have made a valiant effort, if Ello takes off, I’m going to want to choke its pretentious, elegant, excessively white spaced ass. I think we should just ignore anything that doesn’t exist as of right now, and much of what already does.
OFM: I’m with you. Let’s call it right now. No more social media because it’s ridiculous already.
What is one pet peeve of yours that no one should ever do in your presence if they know what’s good for them?
Well, if you’re my kids, you know whining is out. However, in my day to day life, probably my greatest impatience is with people who either act stupid, or lack common sense. I don’t mean people who genuinely have some kind of challenge or problem. I’m talking about people like the woman I was behind in line at Starbucks, who was so helpless that she couldn’t remember what size, how many shots, and what degree of caffeination she preferred in her morning beverage, and had to rely on the baristas to remember it for her and feed her the order. Seriously, she was like, “You mean I usually get a Venti? With two decaf shots?” And I’ve crossed paths with her before—she is not mentally deficient or brain damaged. She just appears not to be hitting on all cylinders. But she drives me nuts every time I encounter her. I have to admit I’m not always the most patient person.
Also, leave a cheese stick wrapper in my living room and you’ll understand the true meaning of the word “shitstorm.”
OFM: Duly noted.
What is one of your hidden talents if you have one? I personally have no talents other than being declared the best Kraft Mac & Cheese maker in my household.
I have the staggering ability to tell when my children have not brushed their teeth, and/or have not washed their hands (or used Purell) after going to the bathroom. Because I am magical, and the blood that runs through my veins is infused with glitter, fairy tears, and grape Nehi.
Also, I can get my entire fist in my mouth. It’s a pretty sight.
OFM: I’d pay to see that. You and Nurse Mommy Laughs could go on the road with your two unique talents. Think about it.
And – this was a question on a Facebook post going around – but I find it amusing & fun so let’s do it here. What are 3 movies you’ve seen more than 3 times?
Grosse Point Blank, Legally Blond, and nearly every Christmas movie ever made. I’m a sucker for a Christmas movie, even some that are kind of dumb, or only tangentially about Christmas (examples–dumb: Deck the Halls, only tangentially about Christmas: Meet Me in St. Louis).
Finally, Steven Colbert: Great fake news anchor or greatest fake news anchor of all time?
This answer is probably going to turn out worse for me than the time I told you on Twitter that I liked Facebook better than Twitter, but I actually never watch any of the late night news shows—Colbert Report, Jon Stewart, Jimmy Fallon (is he even still on?). The last time I watched anything even remotely similar, Dan Akryod was calling Jane Curtin an ignorant slut. I’m a morning person—if they showed those programs at 6 a.m. I’d be their target demographic. As it is, I’m pretty much dead to the world by 10:30. This may very well result in the cancellation of my contract with One Funny Motha for the Better Know a Blogger series.
OFM: It’s okay if you don’t watch it. What’s not okay is if you say someone is better than Stephen because that is an out right lie and a complete impossibility.
Bonus question, what is your favorite book or books?
The Little House series, the Anne of Green Gables series, Gone with the Wind, and Emma by Jane Austen. There’s a huge number more, but we can start with those. Only children tend to read a LOT, yo.
If that wasn’t enough for you, and you want more of Tracy you can really Better Know a Blogger by checking out her fabulous, funny and endearing posts This is Only a Test and The Greatest Cake of All, and like her on Facebook, too, because right now she only has like 55 likes, and she’s worth way more than that!
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