When Did the High School Prom Turn Into a Red Carpet Ready Event?

I suppose turning proms into red carpet events follows naturally after the madness that is promposals.

Perhaps I’m late to the whole prom game because I haven’t been prom dress shopping since my prom back in, well, a long time ago. But prom season is upon us. Moms of teenage girls across the land definitely know what I’m talking about. It’s prom-mania and probably has been since the middle of winter, but I tried not to pay attention. I did a good job, too. I didn’t take my daughter dress shopping until a couple of weeks ago. Why get a jump on things when you can do everything last minute?

When my fear that all the good prom dresses had been snatched up by all those annoying go-getters who efficiently check off their lists months in advance coupled with my even greater fear that my daughter would force me to take a day-long sojourn across state borders to a special prom store where all the dresses, I was certain, would have price tags to rival my wedding dress, I found my motivation. We high-tailed it over to the mall and hit Macy’s hard.

Macy’s to my delight was a prom dress wonderland. Before us dresses stretched to the horizon, which in this case was just the barren white wall of the department store. The dress department on the second floor of Macy’s resembled as the scene in Elf after Buddy decorated for Santa’s arrival only it was festooned with the sequins, satin and lace of 10,000 prom dresses. As much as I marveled at the selection, I also felt apprehensive. Episodes of “Dual Survival” flashed through my mind. The situation in Macy’s dress department was very much like the the scenarios in the show where two survivalists are dropped into a remote, inhospitable environment and they have to rely on their outdoor survival skills in order to find their way out. This was “Dual Survival: Prom Dress Edition.” I feared if I plunged into the dark heart of the dress jungle, I might lose my bearings and never see the light of day again. Everywhere I turned dress racks loomed. If I journeyed into the interior, I’d be bushwhacking my way through tulle and organza, becoming dehydrated and disoriented until I crumbled to the ground  – where under piles of taffeta, charmeuse, beads, rhinestones and crystals I’d die, cold and alone, on the worn, grey industrial-grade carpet of the Macy’s at Willowbrook Mall.

Luckily, I have mad mall survival skills. I made it out of Macy’s alive, but not before my daughter tried on nearly every dress in the store. As we surveyed rack after rack of full-length flowing gowns, I was somewhat flummoxed. There were plenty of dresses, but none of them looked like prom dresses.

When Did the High School Prom Turn Into a Red Carpet Ready Event? By @OneFunnyMotha
Angelina Jolie or kid going to prom?

“Where’s your prom dress section?” I asked the harried sales clerk who was scurrying past buried under a mountain of ball gowns.

“This is the prom dress section,” she said as she raced past before vanishing into the vast, dense forrest of evening-wear.

When Did the High School Prom Turn Into a Red Carpet Ready Event? @OneFunnyMotha
Your teen daughter or Cardi B?

I looked over the selection. “Do they know these kids are in high school?”

When Did the High School Prom Turn Into a Red Carpet Ready Event? By @OneFunnyMotha
Not a prom dress.

The dresses were pretty. They just weren’t promy. There were backless dresses and two-piece numbers and gowns with sheer bodices strategically covered with lace applique. There were side cutouts and plunging V-necks and mesh panels across the abdomen and Angelina Jolie slits up the front and slinky, skin-tight fabrics. I wasn’t shopping for Rihanna or a Kardashian, and my daughter wasn’t going to the Met Gala. She’s a 17-year-old kid. I’d kind of like her to look like that.

When Did the High School Prom Turn Into a Red Carpet Ready Event? By @OneFunnyMotha
Christina Aguilera or high school kid?

Unfortunately, our culture seems insistent upon forcing kids to grow up way faster than necessary. I’m not sure why. There are precious few years to be a child and way more than enough time to grapple with the responsibilities of adulthood. I’m not opposed to my daughter growing up or wearing a sophisticated dress. I just don’t see the rush in making our children look like mini adults or dressing them as if they are going to a red carpet event. If my kid was going to one or was a bridesmaid in a wedding, one of those dresses might have been fitting. Considering she’s going to a prom, I’d like to see her in a prom dress.

When Did the High School Prom Turn Into a Red Carpet Ready Event? By @OneFunnyMotha
Not a prom dress

MIA at Summer Sleepaway Camp

So we sent Crazy to sleep-away camp a little over a week ago, and we’ve been without communication ever since. The kids weren’t allowed to bring their cell phones, which I wholeheartedly endorsed and which enticed me to send him in the first place, but I figured during the two-weeks’ time he was away he’d be able to call home at some point. We’ve gotten one phone call, but that was from a camp counselor the day after we dropped him off just letting us know everything was going smoothly. Evidently, and I didn’t know this because I’m unfamiliar with camp ethos, the kids aren’t allow communication with their parents except for writing letters. Which NEVER CAME. Not that I’m hurt.

In place of phone calls the camp posts photos daily on its Facebook page, but the page consists of about 500 unedited pictures in no particular order, and you have to scroll through to see if you can spot the back of your kid’s head in the bottom left-hand corner of the 405th photo.

When your kid goes MIA at Summer Sleepaway Camp

Apparently, Crazy’s camera shy because I’ve only found him in about 3 photos, two of which were from the first two days so I don’t know if he’s still alive. The camp advised parents to pack stationary with stamps, which I dutifully did, but nothing from my sweet baby boy has arrived yet. The past few days I’ve raced to the front door the moment I heard the mail shoved through the slot. Yesterday I was certain a little envelope would be there addressed in barely legible handwriting to me, but still nothing. The little brat hasn’t written me once. Parents are allowed to send email to the camp, which the counselors will then deliver to the kids. I’ve written to him every day. Mostly my emails are filled with questions asking why he hasn’t written me yet. This has not produced the desired result. I wish the camp had mandatory letter writing time because that would be the only way to get Crazy to pick up a pen. I know his silence is probably a good sign. He must be busy having fun, but two weeks is a long time to go without any form of communication with your child. I just want confirmation he’s having fun, that he likes it there, that he’s not home sick. Am I just supposed to take the counselor’s word for it? How do I know he’s not lying? His job is to make sure the kids have fun. Of course he’s going to say that. I’m no fool.

Before we left Crazy at the camp, I even quizzed him as to whether he knew our complete address. Remarkably he did, but I wrote it down for him anyway just in case. Maybe today’s the day I’ll get a letter. A mom can hope.

I don’t know how typical this is because I’ve never sent a kid off to camp before. I suspect it’s fairly typical, but I still want to know if I should be mad at him right now because I’m a little mad. Or should I just be happy he’s probably having fun although there’s no way for me to know because he’s never written me?

I finally contacted the mom of the friend he went with to see if her son ever wrote her because I wanted to make sure I wasn’t the only mother who’s son didn’t love her anymore, and thankfully she never received correspondence either. I was so relieved. BUT she did say she sent her son 2 care packages while he was gone. I’m like, Care packages? I didn’t know I was supposed to be sending care packages. They went to camp not college. And only for 2 weeks. By the time he received the care package, I would be at camp picking him up. Plus, what would I even put in the care package? The kids aren’t allowed to have candy or electronics, and those are the only things he cares about. So no care packages from me. But that’s ok because I never received a letter from him.

I guess we’re square.

Listen to Your Mother

Maybe that should say listen to your Motha. Because I’m going to be part of the 2017 North Jersey production of the Listen to Your Mother show to take place this weekend. I’m super excited about being included in this production created in tribute to motherhood (because if anything deserves a tribute, it’s motherhood), and I’m honored to be included among this talented cast of writers. I’m also a little nervous. I haven’t committed my piece to memory although memorization isn’t entirely necessary as we’ll have a printed copy to read from at the podium, but I haven’t practiced as much as I should, and I’m pretty sure I’m going to draw a blank as soon as I walk onto the stage, and then I’ll stare out at the expectant audience mute before I run off stage in hysterics.

That’ show I imagine it will go down, anyway, but I’ll keep you posted.

The producers have assured us we won’t be able to see the audience from the stage, which is a huge relief. When we look out all we’ll see is a sea of black so perhaps I can pretend there’s no one out there. Who needs to see people staring back at you? That’s just awful. Why would anyone make us do that? Why would anyone make us read our work in front of other people? That’s like the ultimate torture. I don’t like reading my work aloud to myself and certainly not to other people. It’s awkward and embarrassing. If someone else read my essay I’m sure it would sound much better. But, noooo, the producers are making me do it. I think they have a bit of a sadistic side. I doubt there’s any getting out of it now since the show’s tomorrow, but my plan is to practice all day long until I’ve grounded the words into my brain. We also have practice for several hours tomorrow before showtime so hopefully I’ll be able to remember what the hell I’m saying. Tomorrow’s going to be a full day. We have to be at the theater at 10:00 a.m. ahead of the first show, which starts at 2:00. That should be plenty of time. With all that practice I can’t mess up, right?

The Terror.

Have you ever watched any of the Listen to Your Mother YouTube videos? Not one person stumbles or botches their lines. Not ONE. I’ve watched them all. Well, not all but plenty, and everybody is the consummate professional. Unlike me. I hope I don’t ruin the show.

I also heard the curtains that form the backdrop behind us on stage is mustard color. Shouldn’t be too difficult to find an outfit that won’t clash.

The Listen to Your Mother cast of the 2017 North Jersey show. LTYM in New Jersey.
The (adorable) cast of the 2017 North Jersey Listen to Your Mother show.

There we are. Don’t we look cute? See me all the way on the right sitting on the rail? Remind me never to do that again. The photographer actually encouraged people to sit on the banister. She didn’t say you’d looked all hunched over and fat, but that’s my sweater bunching up! it’s not my rolls (I hope).

Alright I have to go practice now and figure out what I’m going to wear. What pairs well with mustard?

Surviving Summer with Kids

Day 9: I don’t have long now. I am very weak. I fear by the time you receive this I might be gone. The outcome of summer lock-down with my kids is unclear, but I want you to know I held out for as long as I could. I waited. Every day I waited, scanning the horizon for re-enforcements. They never came. I will put up a valiant fight, but in the end I may not be strong enough.

Surviving Summer With Kids

Photo credit

 

For as long as I am able, I will continue to write, numbering the days. That way my final moments and what, ultimately, lead to my untimely demise can be pieced together – in case Jon Krakauer ever wants to write a book about my brave yet failed struggle for survival. It’ll be just like Into the Wild, Krakauer’s account of Christopher McCandless, the young transient who vanished after college to live off the land in the Alaskan bush alone, which was based on the journal McCandless left behind.

When I began writing this that journal immediately sprang to mind. How similar our two stories were – except I’m not in Alaska, and I don’t have to gut a moose for survival or live in an abandoned, hollowed-out school bus without heat or water for the entire duration of the Alaskan winter. So maybe our stories aren’t exactly identical. Still, the fact remains both our lives remained in precarious conditions and under grave danger.

Allow me to recount the tale.

Bus
Ahh, home sweet home. Photo credit

 

With the final days of summer upon us and camp long over, I was forced to confront something I did not want to have to face: My children (and the gaping stretch of wide-open time before the start of school I was now saddled with filling). So I did what I always do in times of need or nervousness. I turned to social media.

“While Day 1 of Mommy Summer Camp went unexpectedly well,” I wrote on Facebook, “Day 2 found me screaming at the kids. By Day 3 I was no longer on speaking terms with my family. What will Day 4 bring? The kids might be out on the street with a sign reading, ‘Free to a good home.'”

Even though Day 1 went surprisingly well, calling into question my harsh assessment of my children and their ability to utilize vast quantities of unstructured, free time somewhat productively without my direct and continued involvement, Day 2 brought my real life back into sharp and painful focus. 

Day 1 was an aberration. Day 2 was my reality. It took a mere 48 hours for all structure, protocol and communications to break down and my vision of the final weeks of summer to play out exactly as predicted. At least, I no longer needed to feel bad about any undue harshness. 

There I was racing around trying to care for and occupy the kids while simultaneously attempting to get my own work done as The Kid moped around, grumbling about how I was inconveniencing her by delaying her transport to a friend’s house. 

“Now I’m going to be late!” she shrieked, storming off.

Oh, OFM don’t play that. This is the part in the status update where I was “screaming at the kids.” Only by screaming I mean cursing. And by the kids I mean The Kid. She drove me to it. And it was only the second day.

Let me pause for a moment here so we can soak in the absurdity of her statement. She was upset because she was going to be late to… do what? Hang out? She was freaking out on me, her parent, the very person on whom she was dependent for the ride because she was going to be late for nothing. I let her have it.

Then I drove her to her friend’s house. After that I exacted my revenge. The next day her request to go over to a friend’s house was denied, and instead we spent the entire day running errands. By the end the kids were fairly miserable.

So I think I made my point.

I’m not sure what Day 10 or 11 or 12 or any of the rest of the days will bring. I’m too scared to think about them. I’m fearful and still unsure as to whether I’ll make it, but perhaps I do have a fighting chance after all.

How to Travel with Teens & STILL Enjoy Your Vacation: Part II

With apartments in Rome and Venice secured, we were off to a good start. Of course your accommodations don’t count for much if your kids decide to be whiney and generally unpleasant during your vacation. So the other tip I have for you to ensure a wonderful vacation with your offspring is to threaten their lives. I found that to be quite helpful.

When dealing with kids, I find threatening their lives to be helpful. Click To Tweet

Before we left my husband told our kids in no uncertain terms that fighting on this trip wouldn’t be tolerated. And for the most part it worked. Whenever my kids started in all I had to say was, “Don’t make me feel like I’m back in America,” and the bickering stopped. I don’t know what it was, why that statement worked better than anything else I’ve ever shouted at my kids, but I do know I’m going to start yelling it at home, too, and see if it still has the same effect.

Venice

When we landed in Rome, we were shown to our apartment where we were given a brief tour by the owner’s representative before he wished us a pleasant stay and slipped out the front door. As I stood in the foyer and watched the door click shut behind him it occurred to me I was in Italy with absolutely nothing to do. It was 11:00 A.M. on the first day of our trip, and I had not one thing planned. The day followed a feverish 24-hours in which I raced around, pitching shoes and skirts and hats and everything else I might need for a 7-day trip into my suitcase before shoving my laptop and passport and flight information into a carry-on as the driver pulled up outside the house to take us to the airport. As the driver waited, I flicked off my computer, which I’d been working on until that moment, grabbed my bags and hustled out the door to take the trip to the airport where I boarded a six-hour overnight flight across the Atlantic. In the lead up to the trip I never once opened a travel guide, Googled an itinerary or downloaded a map, which may sound stupid or lazy or both but was really just a factor of time. Ordinarily, I research a destination until I could be a local guide myself, and I schedule every second down to the half-hour block of hammock time between 4:00 and 4:30 P.M. on day two, but with this trip I ran out of time.

We’d taken care of the main thing, though. We’d gotten ourselves there. And my husband and I had been to Italy once before so we didn’t feel the need to cram in every possible site to give ourselves the feeling we were having the best possible trip. So on that first day with no plan or schedule, which ordinarily would’ve sent me into heart failure, I drifted out of the apartment and into the bright morning light, not knowing where I was going. But I didn’t care. I was in Italy, and that was enough. My husband who was better prepared than I had downloaded a map app on his phone. As we headed down the cobblestone street, he gave it to our son to navigate us around because who cares where you wind up when you’re in Italy and there will be wine at the next stop?

That’s another thing I recommend – copious amounts of wine. Take every opportunity to sample the wine because it’s the best way to truly immerse yourself in the culture. And it keeps you open to anything your family wants to do, which was wander around and eat gelato. The perfect first day.

FUN!
FUN!

When we returned to the apartment that evening, though, I began to panic. A week was a long time to wander aimlessly, and I did actually want to see some historic sites and maybe one of the 7 Wonders of the World while we were at it. Rushing to my suitcase, I snatched my laptop and began frantically Googling tours of Rome and Venice. What if I was too late? What if everything was booked up? With my nose to the screen, I scrolled down the page as my eyes darted back and forth trying to scan all the tour descriptions at once. I needed a tour of the Vatican for four for tomorrow.

That day, the same one we landed in Rome, I miraculously managed to book all the tours for our trip. Of course, beggars can’t be choosers, and I feared I’d booked the bottom-barrel tours run by shady, unlicensed immigrants with no knowledge of the sites but what they gleaned off tourist brochures, which no one but those who couldn’t get in anywhere else and had travelled all the way to Europe with nothing planned took.

But that turned out not to be the case. The tours were all highly organized and professional, lead by enthusiastic, knowledgeable guides filled with fascinating facts. This good fortune only bolstered my spirits further, which I honestly didn’t think was possible. After the Vatican I was on a natural high although I don’t think the tour had the same effect on my son by the miserable expression on his face. But that’s the other thing – and this is key to having a wonderful time – you must ignore your children. I was so caught up in the stories of the artists and sculptures and paintings filling every square inch of wall space in the Vatican that I was oblivious to my son’s misery. It wasn’t until the end of the tour that I noticed his blank, little face, his eyes emotionless, black holes, staring back at me through the crowd. Still, he never once complained. For all of the three-hour tour, he was a trooper. Plus, we promised him gelato after every outing.

This part is crucial. In order to have a good time with your #kids, you must ignore them. #ParentingTips Click To Tweet
How to travel with teens and STILL enjoy your vacation. I got all the travel tips to vastly improve your quality of life with kids while you're on vacation. @OneFunnyMotha
BORING! ~Kids

After one of many gelato stops that day, we headed back to the apartment to get ready for dinner, and here is my final piece of advice for you. Listen closely because what I’m about to tell you is critical to the success of the mission: Allow your children a couple hours a day back at the room to play on their phones. I can’t emphasize this point enough. Whenever my kids were sluggish, trailing behind us on the crowded streets of Rome or looking bored and gloomy on the walking tours in Venice, all we had to do was mention electronics, and they perked right up. Quality time alone with their devices restores the natural balance. Electronics allow children to refuel and regain the vital energy they lost during the boring tour of the Sistine Chapel, and once they do, they are much better for it and much more agreeable dinner companions. Although I’m usually opposed all things electronic, I beseech you to employ this travel method. It will vastly improve your quality of life.

How to travel with teens and STILL enjoy your vacation. I give you all the tip, tricks and hacks to enjoy your trip with your children. @OneFunnyMotha
Gondola Shot.

While the whole trip was rigged together, I don’t think it could have worked out any better if we’d planned it. Maybe because I’m the type of person who’s always waiting for something to go wrong, when nothing does, I’m completely overjoyed. And, on this trip nothing went wrong. In fact, everything went right, and nobody was more surprised than I.

If you like this, you’ll love, I Just Want to Be Perfect, the fourth book in The New York Times best-selling series. It doesn’t have anything to do with travel, but it is funny. And, I’m in it. What more could you ask for? Get it on Amazon or Barnes & Noble or order a signed copy direct from me: info @ onefunnymotha (dot) com.

Push Presents Are Stupid

Even the name is stupid. I don’t like saying the words, and I shouldn’t have to because they shouldn’t even exist. Every time I write those words, I want to put quotation marks around them to indicate I don’t agree with this contrived term, but I’m being forced against my will to acknowledge it.

I’m not sure when push presents came into vogue, but it was after the birth of my first child over a decade ago, and I’m pretty sure it had something to do with the Kardashians – as all social ills seem to be related to them.

Idk when push presents came into vogue but I’m pretty sure it had something to do w/ the Kardashians. Click To Tweet

The thing is no one needs a present for birthing a child. You know why? Because the child is the present. After a nerve-wracking nine months of carefully planning, vigilantly protecting, and anxiously awaiting the arrival of your tiny, fragile newborn baby, you actually get the baby. That’s the reward. Presents are meant to be for birthdays or Christmas. You get them a present then, like if they were a gamer you would go to UnrankedSmurfs.com if they were a gamer who was into the game League of Legends – that’s when you buy a present, not for when someone has just birthed a baby.

The strange thing about the rise of the push present is that childbirth is not a business transaction. The implication of the need to compensate a woman for bearing a child is that she’s just some hired hand, no more than a birthing vessel, contracted to produce a child for a man rather than an equal party to the whole endeavor. That she’s being paid off for a service provided. That the two entered into this union jointly of their own agency out of a love so great it drove them to long for a child of their own gets a little lost.

I’m not saying women don’t deserve appreciation and respect or to be downright worshiped for their singular role in creating, carrying and bringing forth new life because lord knows that’s no small burden, but demanding material goods in exchange for a child seems somehow, I don’t know, grotesque.

This may not be so surprising coming from someone like Kim Kardashian. Kim quite famously announced her desire for a million-dollar diamond choker for the birth of her son. But she’s not the only expectant mother making such demands. The internet is awash with stories of other pseudo-celebrities receiving 10-carat diamond rings or Bentleys or some such equally extravagant and meaningless present, which may not be bad for a day’s work. I just hope they didn’t do it for the gifts.

And now the lifestyles of the rich and idiotic have trickled down into the general population, polluting it. Regular people are trying to wrangle luxury vehicles or at least 1-carat diamond something-or-others out of the birthing experience. Childbirth is one of life’s most miraculous moments. No need to cheapen it by using it as an excuse for material gain.

Instead of push presents, you know what mothers could use? Some help. Babies are a lot of work. I’m sure celebrities don’t have to worry about that, but people who live in the real world do. It would be nice if instead of push presents, women got an equal partner to share in the tremendous work of raising a helpless human being. Of course, many fathers are such partners, but undeniably, even in the 21st century women continue to play the predominant role in caring for and raising children. The mother is primarily the one who stays up nights or does the 2 a.m. feedings or rocks the colicky baby all day or finds the right pediatrician or figures out why the baby’s fussy or researches the preschools or locates the day care. Rather than an expensive trinket to “thank” the mother, a partner who divides the responsibilities equally would be a better and more worthy gift in exchange for the contribution the mother makes, I would say.

When I gave birth to my first child all those years ago, a good friend came to visit us in our Brooklyn apartment. Along with the present for the baby, she brought with her, a gift for me. Stunned, it came in a fantastic design from Custom Mailers! It looked so good! I opened it to find a soft, pink fleece top and comfortable lounge pants inside along with an assortment of scented lotions. I was touched. It wasn’t a “reward,” but rather a personal and thoughtful gift that showed I was still valued. Amid the clamor and fuss and absorbing demands of a new baby, I wasn’t forgotten. I, too, mattered. It demonstrated an appreciation of me in my new role and of what I was going to need. Those are the kind of gifts I think mothers could use.

Not that a new car or a 10-carat diamond ring wouldn’t be nice, but they kind of miss the mark. Instead, perhaps friends, family and society on the whole could express respect and gratitude for new mothers through useful measures and genuinely supportive actions.

Push Presents given by husbands after childbirth are stupid. Yes, they are. Here's why. On @OneFunnyMotha

No one needs a present for birthing a child. You know why? Because the child is the present. Click To Tweet

© 2015 Stacey Gill, as first published on ScaryMommy.com.

Like this? Find even funnier stuff in I STILL JUST WANT TO PEE ALONE, the third installment in The New York Times best-selling series from some of the funniest women on the web. What I’m trying to say is, I’m in this book. Buy it, ok? Available on Amazon, Kindle, iTunes and Barnes and Noble. I will love you forever.

New DC Super Hero Girls Cartoon & $100 VISA Gift Card Giveaway

DC Super Hero Girls $100 Visa Gift Card Giveaway.

I’m all about girl power around here, which is why when DC Entertainment contacted me about their new DC Super Hero Girls cartoon, I was more than happy to spread the word. My kids may be a little too old for cartoons these days, but I still love to see empowering female figures in the media especially for young girls. I feel it’s crucial to expose our daughters and sons early on to strong, capable, smart female characters especially as main characters so they realize the full potential and power of girls and women and understand they’re not less important, ancillary characters just used for support.

That’s why I’m so pleased DC is launching the Super Hero Girls animated series this month featuring a whole host of dynamic female characters featuring an array of personalities from strong and fearless to edgy and fun. With a large, diverse cast of characters from Wonder Woman and Supergirl to Bumble Bee and Katana, there’s a relatable character for everyone. Set in school, the series features girls on their journey to discover the power of their unique abilities and friendships. In Super Hero High the girls “master their super powers, brain power, and will power to become the Super Heroes of tomorrow.” If that doesn’t sound worthwhile and inspiring, I can’t help you.

The show is filled with action-packed girl power with girls who actually look like girls. The characters are also fully clothed, which is a nice bonus. If that’s what you’re looking for for your kids then this is the show for you. Plus, the DC Super Hero Girls YouTube channel makes it super easy for busy parents perpetually on the go with the favorite characters on-demand and from any device so you can keep your kids busy on line at the food store, at your other kid’s basketball practice, waiting for a table at a restaurant, where ever you may roam. Check out their YouTube video right here.

And, for even more fun, there’s the website where kids can learn about the characters, play games, download free printable activities, and more.

Now for the giveaway. Enter to win below and good luck!

 

Enter to win the DC Super Hero Girls $100 Visa Gift Card Giveaway

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This is a sponsored post, but I believe in girl power and giveaways, which is why I’m doing it.

You know what else is full of girl power? My book. I STILL JUST WANT TO PEE ALONE is the third installment in The New York Times best-selling series from some of the funniest women on the web. Get it on AmazonKindleiTunes and Barnes and Noble. I will love you forever. 

An Ode to Mom Jeans

I’m not talking about a return to the days when jeans extend all the way up to your neck. Or the time circa 1980 of pleated, acid washed jeans that really highlighted and accentuated your burgeoning abdominal region. I’m talking about a good, old-fashioned, fully functional, basic, fitting garment that actually covers the body parts it’s designed to cover. I don’t think expecting your pants to come up past your ass is too much to ask. In fact, that was once a basic tenet of clothing.

I don’t know what happened in the garment industry, but it seems it has completely dispensed with its 2,000-year history of manufacturing clothing for the purpose of, well, clothing people. Although we now have more options than ever with myriad styles, cuts and washes–sadly, none of them fit. It seems a cruel paradox.

Walk into any retailer, and you’ll find a dizzying array of denim: Jeans that are skinny, super skinny, super duper skinny, slim skinny, confining skinny and can’t-breath skinny. And that’s just the skinny category. Then there are straight jeans, curvy jeans, straight curvy jeans, roundabout jeans and boyfriend jeans, not to be confused with the sexy boyfriend jeans or the metrosexual boyfriend jeans. That last one is the one I need. The metrosexual boyfriend jean: fashionable, yet fitting. Where can I find those?

Crack is Whack, An Ode to Mom Jeans. But not your mom's mom jeans. By @OneFunnyMotha

While I’ve had trouble finding my perfect metrosexual boyfriend of the denim variety, I haven’t had problems finding other options. I can choose any finish from distressed to faded to whiskered to dark wash to not-too-dark-but-not-too-light wash to my personal favorite, worn crystal. Then you have the rises. There’s mid-rise, low-rise, ultra low-rise, low low-rise and half-ass-hanging-out-rise. But where, I ask you, is the high-rise? Where is the standard cover-your-stomach-so-your-flab-doesn’t-ooze-over-the-side rise?

Don’t even get me started on the skimmer jeans. There are approximately 54,000 varieties of those too. By the end of sorting through the vast deep blue sea of denim, casting aside pair after imperceptibly different pair in search of my size only to find it, but in the wrong length (regular and long, but not ankle) because for some reason The Gap thinks the average American woman is 10-feet tall, I had to ask the perky salesperson perched atop a ladder stocking the highest rungs of the towering floor-to-ceiling denim display for help.

“Um, excuse me. Sorry, I just trashed the whole pile of jeans you painstakingly folded and now have to refold, but do you have the dark-wash, always-skinny skimmer jeans in mid-rise size 8 ankle? I don’t see it here.” The 23-year-old sales clerk responded, “Well, we have the deconstructed dark-wash, always-skinny skimmer jeans in size 8 ankle, but in low-rise…or the super-skinny-always-skinny skimmer legging jeans in 8 ankle, but not in dark wash, and those only come in ultra-low-rise.”

“Let’s make this a little easier,” I exhaled. “Do you have any skinny jeans in this store that are mid-rise in size 8 ankle?”

“No, sorry,” she said, chomping her gum before returning to the wall of denim. I didn’t get the sense she was genuinely saddened by my loss.

“But you have a million jeans in this store,” I persisted, shaking my head. “How could you not have any in my size?”

But it was no use, because I am not 18, and the world and jeans are stacked against me.

Please note, because I’d really like to avoid any confusion here, and with full understanding I think we can all come to a consensus on one very important point: I am not, under any circumstances, advocating for high-to-your-eye-rise jeans. I talk not of your mom’s mom jeans but a new jean, a better jean, a technologically enhanced jean. A jean for the 21st century with a delicate balance of fashion and function for women who have birthed a child or developed beyond the age of 21. A jean for the woman who would like to maintain a sense of fashion along with her dignity. Because while we may have become, after years of exposure, a nation desensitized to unwanted butt-crack sightings, I assert crack is now and forevermore will be whack.

What really confounds me about the whole situation is why such a jean doesn’t exist already. This idea isn’t some fanciful notion. I know it can be done, because it has been done.

When these thoughts really get me down, like, say, after a particularly hard day at the mall, I stare mournfully out my window and reminisce about the good times, the heady days of yore when clothing actually fit. I remember a more innocent time before muffin tops, before jeans needed to be hiked up every five minutes, before special complementary underwear was an essential part of an outfit because undergarments actually remained under your garments. Mostly, I wistfully recall a bygone era when one’s exposed crack would cause embarrassment, when all the world considered plumber’s crack as the height of humiliation and not a given.

I say it’s time to take action. I submit to you, good people of the world, that a society in which mass unwanted crack sightings are tolerated is not a civilized society at all. We had fitting jeans once, and we could have them again. In fact, we must insist upon it. We must rise up and demand our jeans do the same, because while we have a multitude of rises, they have not risen far enough.

I submit to you, good people of the world, that a society in which mass unwanted crack sightings are tolerated is not a civilized society at all. Click To Tweet

You might want to like me on Facebook, too, because I’m just as funny over there but even more times a day.

If you like this, you’ll love my book, I STILL JUST WANT TO PEE ALONE, the third installment in The New York Times best-selling series from some of the funniest women on the web. For a good time get it on AmazonKindleiTunes and Barnes and Noble. I will love you forever. 

photo credit: Tinuesque via photopin (license)

Must You Invite the Whole Class to a Child’s Birthday Party?

I say no. I say it’s up to the family to invite whomever they choose to their own private, personal affairs. But some schools have recently taken it upon themselves to instruct families on how to run their personal lives. They are now issuing policies mandating all students in class be invited to a child’s birthday party. I say that is completely absurd given we don’t live in a totalitarian society. Not yet anyway. And I’m saying it over on Brain, Child. Today I’m engaged in a battle royale with Rudri Patel in Brain, Child’s great debates series. And Rudri’s going down. Rudri, who is a former lawyer (so I have my work cut out for me), argues for inviting the whole class while I argue hell no. But you decide. Go on over and check out the debate on whether or not to invite the whole class to your kid’s birthday party. And let me know who won.

Must you invite the whole class to your child's birthday party? I say no. But some schools are taking it upon themselves to tell parents how to run their personal affairs. What do you think? @OneFunnyMotha

If you like this, you’ll love my book, I STILL JUST WANT TO PEE ALONE, the third installment in The New York Times best-selling series from some of the funniest women on the web. For a good time get it on AmazonKindleiTunes and Barnes and Noble. I will love you forever. 

Just Say No to Vaginal Weightlifting

I tried to ignore this when I first saw it come across my Facebook feed, but it seems I am unable. I need to weigh-in on the subject of vaginal weightlifting. As with so, so many other things brought to us by the internet to which we need to just say no like naked yoga and micro bikinis and sex with your iPad, we must raise our voices again in protest against vaginal weightlifting.

Do women not have enough nonsense to contend with? We are perpetually bombarded with messages to have flatter stomachs, smaller waists, bigger chests, tighter butts, plumper lips, smoother skin. Now we’re being told even our vaginas need fixing? If you wanted to make your vagina tighter my friend got some good results out of skin pro tighening gel.

Holistic sex and relationship coach and self-described vaginal weightlifter, Kim Anami, is behind this most recent ridiculous trend to make women feel they’re not measuring up and in need of constant improvement.

Vaginal weightlifting: Just Say No. By @OneFunnyMotha

When you first “Meet Kim” virtually, through her website, she poses an essential question: “My vagina can lift coconuts. Can yours?”

Um, no. Then again that’s not really a goal of mine. Anami claims this vaginal weightlifting is the key to empowering women, connecting them to their sexual power which in turn helps them to harness everything they want in life. Because, of course, the only way for women to get what they want in life is through sex or use of their sexuality.

According to the site, vaginal weightlifting, which appears to be basically doing Kegels while household objects are hanging out of your vagina, has a host of benefits. It strengthens the pelvic floor, eliminates incontinence, and purportedly enhances libido and intensifies sexual pleasure.

If you’re asking, “But how do you hold household objects with your vagina?” The answer is easy! Just find a stone, Anami uses a jade egg threaded with a string just like the ancient Taoists used to do, which she inserts into her vagina and then attaches whatever she has lying around – pineapples, chandeliers, small pieces of the Berlin Wall – to the string dangling from her groin.

If you're asking, But how do you hold household objects with your vagina? The answer is easy! Click To Tweet

Just say no to Vaginal Weight lifting. By @One Funny Motha

Anami, who by the way gave herself that name, which is a Sanskrit word meaning the unnameable one or the highest plane of God, not to be too self-aggrandizing, has been practicing this ancient Chinese secret for 20 years. (I don’t know if technically chandeliers are part of the method. I’m thinking not since I don’t think chandeliers date back 5,000 years.) She likes to call it vaginal Kung Fu. Kung Fu being the intense study to develop mastery over something. In this case your vagina. In a video she explained, “So it’s when you immerse yourself so deeply in something that it reveals it’s internal mysteries.”

Anybody else catch the double meaning?

Anami believes this intensely personal training teaches women the power of the vagina. But I think we already know its power. Women give birth. There is nothing more powerful than that. Suspending pineapples from your innards really can’t compare.

But I think we already know the power of the vagina. Women give birth. There is nothing more powerful than that. Suspending pineapples from your innards really can't compare. Click To Tweet

Still, Anami insists, “This method creates an articulate, sensitive and strong vagina.” A vagina that can speak for itself!

“This is what I use to lift various pieces of furniture and tropical fruit.” Naturally.

She goes on to assert a “masterful vagina ought to be able to move furniture.” I never thought of it that way. I do consider mine to be pretty masterful since I’ve birth a child, but I’m not certain it can move furniture. To be honest I’ve never really tried, most likely because moving furniture with a vagina would never occur to a sane person. Can you image how long it would take to move a couch like that?

But that’s not all a vagina should be able to do. Anami also raises this philosophical question on her site: “Can you shoot ping pong balls with your vagina?” She then comforts women by assuring them that if they can’t, they aren’t alone. Oh, thank God! I was worried for a second. She goes on to report, “99.9% of women haven’t mastered this essential life skill.” Essential. Life. Skill. I don’t know how essential this life skill is given I’ve managed at least 40 years without it, and I’m still breathing. Sure, maybe it would have come in handy in college during a game of beer pong, but other than that, I’m not really clear on the practical applications. Is it a skill I can put on my resume?

For Anami, genital ping pong ball blasting is elevated to an art form, one she’s incredulous doesn’t take place the world over. The “art of vaginal ping pong ball shooting, for example, is simply unheard of in these parts.”

I can’t imagine why. She continues, “Yet in many South East Asian countries it is a popular sport.” I know I’d like to order up my tub of popcorn, grab a seat in a stadium and watch a good match.

Although I hate to say it, you really have to go check out her site. She loves to pose all decked out with fruit hanging from her nether regions. On the main page I think it’s a pomegranate or maybe an apple, which when you’ve been photographed suspending coconuts or doing backbends while clutching a bunch of bananas with your lady bits, is not all that impressive. But what I’d really like to point out is the moving, downward facing arrow underneath the picture that reads, “Enter here.” Perhaps the arrow should be pointing in the opposite direction.

On the site, you’ll also see her listed accomplishments, among them are lifting 10 pounds with her vagina, living part-time on a surf yacht in Indonesia and having 20 orgasms in a row. Which assuredly will induce you to immediately sign up for her retreats. Oh, and make sure not to miss out on her Vigina-on-Tour, which you can follow on Instagram.

Funny thing about all this weight training and conditioning, you never see anything about it for penises. No one ever asks how much weight a penis can benchpress. And I think that’s just sexist.

If you like this, you’ll love my book, I STILL JUST WANT TO PEE ALONE, the third installment in The New York Times best-selling series from some of the funniest women on the web. For a good time get it on Amazon, Kindle, iTunes and Barnes and Noble. I will love you forever.

Photo credit: Facebook/Kim Anami