Wednesday, April 17, 2013

An Open Letter to Spammers

Dear Spammers,

I don't pretend to understand what the heck you're doing.  The connection between your comments of "this was a very interesting article for men and women" and your link to a website selling penile dysfunction drugs is not exactly clear to me, but I suppose it must work on occasion since you try to get me to publish them several times a day.  I don't understand why your Ws look like sideways threes (which I just discovered are actually lowercase Omegas).  I don't understand how you ever get anybody to click on your links, and I don't understand how you make any money when somebody DOES click on your link, unless you own the website selling the Cialis or whatever, but that seems kind of unlikely, especially considering your limited language skills.

What I'm saying is, spam confuses me.

Recently, your comments have consisted of more substantial material--sometimes even questions relating to the post.  You think you're pretty clever, don't you?  You think that I won't see the link at the end of your comment, right?  Well, you are MISTAKEN, Spammer.  As soon as that little notification pops up on my phone that Anonymous has left me a new blog comment, I'm onto you.  Believe it or not, I don't get a lot of *real* comments from anonymous people.  Most people who want to talk to me through my blog don't mind telling me (at the very least) their screen name.

And don't think I've forgotten about all you Twitter spammers.  Let's say that Judd Apatow did just get a new tattoo.  Do you think that he's going to see your link asking him about it and click on it?  And those tweets with no words, but just links--what's your thinking there?  Are there actually people out there who are dumb enough to click?

It must be kind of sad to be a spammer: sitting in front of your computer for hours at a time, being constantly rejected by smart people.  I'm so sorry that's your life.  If you enjoy spamming, then I guess I'm happy for you since not many people really *love* their jobs, but perhaps you could consider a career in something equally anti-social which doesn't annoy people quite as much. 

As my gift to you, Spammers, I will publish any and all spam comments which get through Blogger's (pitiful) filters and into my inbox for THIS POST ONLY. Knock yourselves out.  In return, I ask that you stop attempting to spam the comments of all my other posts.  Deal? 

Yeah, I didn't think so.




* If you are a regular reader of this blog, I suggest that you do not click on any links in any comments related to this post, when and if they come about. 

New York, New York

Hey, y'all!

I realize that I didn't do the "what I learned this week" feature last week (and that it's already Wednesday), but I was really busy this weekend with a friend visiting, so we'll just add last week's lessons onto the end of this week's.  Cool?  Great.

What a fun weekend!  We finally made it up to NYC for a day visit.  The weather was nice (about 60 degrees) and we had a fabulous tour guide in our friend Sheng, who actually grew up there.  Do you know how much easier it is to get around Manhattan with someone who actually knows which trains go where?  Much.

Parking at the Staten Island ferry is free on weekends, so we took that over and saved ourselves the extra tolls as well as the headache of parking in the city.  Bonus:  the boat goes right by the Statue of Liberty.  The Kid was especially excited about that.

So, what did we do all day, you ask?  Surprisingly little, for as long as we were there!  We got off the boat around 11:30 and left around 8:00 pm.  In that time, we:

Took the subway to midtown
Walked around
Went to FAO Schwartz
Ordered lunch from food carts parked outside of FAO Schwartz
Walked around
Had dessert at Serendipity 3
Walked to and through Central Park
Let The Kid play on a playground for a bit
Took the subway back downtown
Walked around
Bought some finger puppets and a necklace from a street vendor
Had pizza and sangria at the first pizzeria in the USA
Got rice pudding and cheesecake for dessert
Took the subway back to the ferry

Now that I list it all off, I suppose we actually did a lot.  I'd love to go for two or three days next time, though, just so that we could check out a museum or two.  Honestly, my favorite part about any city is just walking and exploring, so in that respect, this trip was a whopping success.

I have a lot of other things I'd like to blog about, so I'll be back soon!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Losing it.

I keep losing things.  To say I'm getting frustrated would be the understatement of the year.

Recently, I've misplaced:

  • A night shirt belonging to a visiting 6-year-old boy
  • A dog harness
  • A tripod
  • A large multiple picture frame containing several irreplaceable photographs.
  • A (hard boiled) Easter egg.*

I have cleaned this house from top to bottom, looked in every nook and cranny, torn apart the couches, and thoroughly inspected both cars as well as the front and back yards, but NADA.  These items appear to have vanished into thin air.  How is that POSSIBLE??

When I was little, my family lost the TV remote control.  After many weeks of searching, my parents came to the conclusion that my little sister, who was going through a hiding phase, had hidden it in the trash can and it had long since been sent to the local landfill.  My son is not going through a hiding phase.  In fact, I've promised him a $2 reward if he finds the dog harness, and he likes money so much that I'm positive that he'd switch teams if he were in on some sort of conspiracy against me.


After a lot of brain racking, I've decided that the answer to my question must be one of following harrowing solutions:

1.  Someone in my house is eating these things.

2.  Our ghost is back and she's taking stuff in protest of our refusal to leave her home.

3.  We have a burglar visiting us sporadically with a penchant for unusual and near-worthless items.

4.  I'm losing my mind.

Obviously, I'm rooting for #1, although I can't imagine that my dog or my son would be able to eat a whole tripod without leaving any sort of evidence behind.

If I've left a stone unturned, I'm open to suggestions.  Though I'm not so optimistic that someone who has never set foot in my house could find my lost treasures, I'm willing to resort to spells, new age techniques, and superstitions, so if you know of any, please leave them in the comments.

I'll post an update if any of these things ever turn up.  Developing...

UPDATE 4/13, 6:51pm:  I FOUND THE DOG HARNESS!!!!!  It was in the pocket of my husband's robe!!**  SUCCESS!!!!

*I don't really need the Easter egg back, but I'd like to know where it is, just in case it's inside my house.
** Admittedly, I am the one who put the harness in the robe pocket because I was wearing the robe at the time, but we're not here to point fingers.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Oh, look! An Interview!

One of my favorite bloggers (and people), Una LaMarche, interviewed me about Dear Rick, Dear Teri on her blog this week! 

If you don't already read The Sassy Curmudgeon (why not??  you're missing out!) then what are you waiting for?  Click on over and read how about how dorky I am!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Things I Learned This Week 4.6.2013


1.  I ought to have put this whole "weekly feature" thing in my phone with a reminder.  Sorry I'm a day late.  :-/

2.  People really like free stuff.  I gave away nearly 400 free Kindle books during my two-day promotion.  WHAT.  In fact, I gave away so many books that I ended up on various Kindle Store best sellers lists!  How exciting is that?  I felt so cool!

That's me, hanging out with Debbie Reynolds, Tina Fey, Jackie Kennedy, and Eleanor Roosevelt.  No biggie.

 3.  If your water heater appears to be broken, it may just have a bunch of gunk in it.  The water heater in this house has been working really inconsistently during the last few months.  When I finally called the landlord to have him send someone out, it turned out that the problem was just gunk.  All you have to do is drain it and--voilĂ !  Fixed.  Hooray for hot water!

4.  If I'm shopping and I try on the perfect jeans, I should just buy them.  I'm still thinking about the same pair of Levi's I tried on yesterday and left in the store; in fact, I can't STOP thinking about them.  I'm going back tomorrow, and I will not make the same mistake again.

Mom has some weird nicknames for her friends.
5.  It's a good idea to clean out your phone contacts every once in a while.  My mom is here visiting, and she came with a brand new phone.  Her previous one was literally the same model as the first mobile phone I ever owned.  It had over 400 contacts listed in the phone book, which we had to move over manually due to the fact that computers probably didn't exist when this phone was manufactured.  Luckily, many of the numbers were of people she didn't know anymore, and several of them were dead, so we didn't have to move those over--which got me thinking that I should probably clean house on my phone book more often.

6.  Martha Stewart is 71.  Okay, I actually learned this a couple weeks ago, but I'm still reeling.  71??  Are you KIDDING ME???  She looks amazing.

7.  Ants are magicians.  One moment, your bathroom floor is perfectly clean (save for a bubblegum flavored toothpaste drip, courtesy of The Kid), and the next moment--BAM!  Hundreds of ants!  How do they DO that?  Stupid magic ants.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Free stuff! Click here for free stuff!

Holy.  Moly.

Self-publishing is a lot of work, people!  I suppose maybe it wouldn't be if I'd just hit "publish" and let it sit there on Amazon, but since I went to all the trouble of writing the thing, I figured that I may as well try to sell a few copies to people who aren't directly related to me.

Well, actually, my focus isn't so much on "selling" the book right now as much as it is just getting people to read it.  In that spirit, I am announcing my first...


Starting now, until 11:59 PM on Thursday, April 4th, you can visit (or, or whatever your local Amazon might be) and download the Kindle version of Dear Rick, Dear Teri for FREE.

If you don't have a Kindle and would still like to read the e-book version of Dear Rick, Dear Teri, you can go here to download a free app which will enable you to read the book on your computer,  tablet, or phone.

This download is 100% free--no strings attached!  However, if you read Dear Rick, Dear Teri and you enjoy it, I would be your new best friend if you would write a review on Amazon when you've finished reading.  It doesn't have to be a glowing review (though I welcome those with open arms); just be honest.  Nobody wants to be the first one to read a book, so the more reviews a book gets, the better.

I'll soon be doing a signed paperback giveaway, possibly on the book's Facebook fan page, so if you haven't "liked" it already, head on over there and click the button.

Happy reading--and tell your friends!  :)
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