Mary Ellen’s Helpful Hints: Or What is Mary Ellen Trying to Say?

Hello Dear Readers! Today is a life changing day.  After reading today’s post, you will not only go away a person of exemplary character, you will, more importantly, know exactly what to do to keep your liver tender!  So without further adieu, let’s start changing our lives by way of Mary Ellen’s Helpful Kitchen Hints!

This diminutive dossier written by the demure Mary Ellen back in 1980 is  your golden ticket to efficiency in every area of life.
This diminutive dossier written by the demure hand of Mary Ellen Pinkham back in 1980 is our golden ticket to efficiency in every single area of lives except bowling.

Let’s begin by zeroing in on some of the more riveting and exciting helpful hints:

Corn on the Cob Not in the Teeth!

Mary Ellen's helpful kitchen hints

This is just the kind of hint we love Mary Ellen so dearly for.  In a mere 19 words, Mary Ellen has managed to solve the centuries-old heartbreak of that awkward, corn-silky smile!  Oops, I think Mary Ellen forgot to mention to be sure to remember to clean off your husband’s toothbrush and put it back just as he left it when you’re done de-silking corn with it. (He’ll never know!)  Oh Mary Ellen, you sly one you!

Mary Ellen’s Cottage Cheese Discovery

Mary Ellen's cottage cheese advice

After years of exhaustive testing, Mary Ellen can finally say that cottage cheese stays fresher longer when stored upside down in the refrigerator just like Mary Ellen’s cat does, and just like Mary Ellen’s parakeet does and just like Mary Ellen’s husband does!  Who knew? (Mary Ellen knew that’s who!)

 Feats with Meats Not to Be Confused with Meat with Feets

Mary Ellen's Hint for Bacon

Oh we’ll be thanking our beloved Mary Ellen for years to come for this one!  Simply go to your local hardware store and find something shaped like a tube, like maybe a pipe.  Then stop off at the welders and have it welded into the length of a package of bacon.  After that, there’s only one more stop to make at Office Depot where you can purchase rubber bands.

Now, Mary Ellen doesn’t make mention of what size the rubber bands should be, but listen, Mary Ellen knows there are some just things in life we have to figure out for ourselves, Dear Readers, and I’m afraid this is one of them.

But it will all be worth it because, in the long run, we’ll be saving ourselves valuable time when it comes to  peeling one piece of bacon apart from the one it’s stuck to.  And what could be better than that?  The answer is zilch, people, zilch!

High Liver High Liver High Lo

How to get liver high

And now for the pièce de résistance, Dear Readers!  The reason that you have read thus far and that is to find out the all important information of how to keep your liver tender!  Well, our Dear Mary Ellen simply takes the liver, soaks it in milk, refrigerates  it two hours, dries it, breads it and sautes it.

Well, if it worked for the livers of Mary Ellen’s cat and Mary Ellen’s parakeet and Mary Ellen’s husband, whose to say it won’t work for us, Dear Readers?

Until next time (when we discuss how Mary Ellen will be removing her mustache) . . . I love you

Vingate Nineteen Seventy-Icks Time-Killing Recipes

Hello Dear Readers! It’s Monday morning again! Which means we’ve all got some pushy little To-do Lists yapping at our heels. 

Well, what better way to ignore such things than by taking time out to relive the tedious days of 1970’s, a decade when time oozed by slower than a drug-free Tour de France.

And to that end, let us open this 1976 McCall’s Cooking School magazine and see how people killed time by cooking disgusting-looking dishes back in, what I like to call, 197-icks:

McCalls's Cooking School Magazine Number 3
It’s not just a magazine, it’s an icky cooking school!

Now having lived through the 1970’s,  I can vouch for the fact that life in the 70’s was extremely boring and tedious.

On any given day your choices to kill time boiled down to 1) watching a rerun of Maude 2) macrameing a hanging plant holder or 3) whipping up something god-awful like this:

1976 Chicken and Dumplings
Slabs of gray chicken slowly and painstakingly placed amid balls of dough gussied up with individually placed chives guaranteed to kill 4 to 5 hours of 70’s mind-numbing tedium.

This 197-icks take on Chicken and Dumplings killed two chickens with one stone.  The placement of the chives alone served to distract one from the 70’s monotony for several hours, but what killed a far bigger chunk of time was trying to find someone who would actually eat it.

Here’s a time-consuming dish that McCall’s Cooking School called French.

The French Casserole called for goose.  A boon to 70's cooks as wild goose chases can last indefinitely.
This 197-icks French Casserole called for goose. A boon to 70’s cooks, because, as everyone knows, wild goose chases are hugely time-consuming.

In the description, McCall’s is bandying around the word melange. Naturally this word melange was a big plus to 70s cooks, as it would have required a time-consuming trip downtown to the main library (the one with the really big dictionary) to look up the word melange — taking up an entire day and bringing them just that much closer to the end of the decade!

In the 70’s there were so many people dying to kill time that McCall’s Cooking School  magazine was thoughtful enough to include this “Too Many Cooks in the Kitchen Pie”

Mincemeat Pecan Pie from 1976
The preparation of this mincemeat pie managed to kill many hours of tedium for as many as five cooks.

If you look at this mincemeat pie (not too closely though unless you have your Tums nearby), you can see that the preparation required:

 A Melissa to not only prepare the dough from scratch, but also, to perform the lengthy process of braiding it as well (killing 17 hours)

A Kimberly to slowly transfer the hand-whipped, whipped cream  into a cake-decorating funnel so that each and every squiggle could be thoroughly obsessed over (killing 22 hours)

A  Jessica to mince the meat over and over and over and over until 7 hours was up (killing 7 hours)

A Stephanie to eat the grape bunch down to a suitable size that would fit picturesquely upon the pie —  choking on several for ten minutes at a time (killing 45 minutes)

And, finally, a Heather to garnish the grapes with the leaves she found after scavenging the neighborhood all night long (killing 12 hours).

Rest assured, Dear Readers that even though the decade of the 70’s was one of the most boring decades to ever grace the pages of a calendar, The McCall’s Cooking School magazine did it’s level best to help us kill the time ad nauseam. 

And for that we shall  be forever sort of grateful.

Until next time . . . I love you

Things I’m Not Doing While I’m Doing Nothing

Hello Dear Readers.  I thought today might be a good day here at the blog to just kick back and do nothing. 

And so what better way to spend time doing nothing than to think about all the things you could be doing if you weren’t already committed to doing nothing:

Four Things I Could Be Doing If I Weren’t Already Committed to Doing Nothing.

1) I could be reading a book . . . here’s one:

Philosophical Problems of Natural Science
Doesn’t it look horribly horribly boring? Don’t ask me why it’s laying on my desk.  (I couldn’t answer you even if I knew because, as I said, I’m committed to doing nothing.)  And what are those strips on the bottom suppose to represent? Bookmarks?  People?  Pasta?

Opening to a page at random (78), Dudley Shapere actually writes, and I am not making this up:

“The work that has been done, and the work currently being done so far as it is manifest, on objective-formal simplicity cannot plausibly be viewed to have brought us to a complete and adequate explication of the concept.”

Dudley Shapere or Dudley Prepositional Phrase Shapere as he is probably referred to by his tea sipping buddies, seems to have — ahem . . .  explicated one too many concepts, shall we say?

I think it would behoove Dudley to maybe try doing what I’m doing; nothing!  Think how well he could document his “doing nothing” experience!

2) I could cut something with these scissors:

scanned in scissors
These are the official Linda Vernon Humor blog scissors. They aren’t very funny in and of themselves. But they are cut ups. Ha ha! (See I told you they weren’t very funny.)

3) I could use the official Linda Vernon Humor Blog Scissors to cut something but what?  Well let’s see here . . .  Oh here’s another book laying on my desk:

Henri Rousseau Art book 1946
It smells like mildew. I got it at a different thrift store than the one I usually go to. (The one that doesn‘t smell like mildew.) I don’t like to go to the one that smells like mildew very often because everything smells like mildew.

4)  Now if I wanted to actually cut something (if I weren’t already committed to doing nothing) I would cut out this picture by Henri Rousseau:

1908 a game of football by Henri  Rouseau
Isn’t this just the best picture ever?  I just love everything about this picture. (Except for the fact that it smells like mildew.)

I would love to tell you all about this picture that Henri Rousseau drew or painted or colored or whatever the case maybe —  besides the fact that  it smells like you know what –but as I have already stated far too many times in the same post  — I am committed to doing nothing.  Sorry, but that’s all there is to it.

Until next time . . . I love you

The 33-Word Trifecta Writing Challenge: Another Day Perhaps Trifecta

This weekend’s 33 word Trifecta Challenge is as follows: This weekend, we’re sending you back to English 101 to revisit the concept of literary devices.  We want you to give us a 33-word example of personification.  Wait.  What?  You forget what that is?  It’s the practice of attaching human traits and characteristics with inanimate objects, phenomena and animals ( 

Another Day Perhaps Trifecta

Trifecta Challenge threw its gauntlet into the ring — spilling third definitions everywhere.  In my haste to clean it up, I almost threw in the towel.  Ha!  Another day perhaps, Trifecta . . . another day perhaps . . . 

“Definition One . . . Definition Two . . . “
“Hey I think she’s coming to.”
“Thank God!”


Until next time . . .  I love you

A Visit from The Limerick Lady!

Dear Readers!  You’ll never guess who stumbled by the blog today! None other than The Limerick Lady, and she’s a limerick writing fool if ever there was one! 

A picture of a lady with a bird on her shoulder horribly drawn
The Limerick Lady

Apparently she’s been out visiting blogs and has taken the liberty of writing a few limericks starring some of our most beloved bloggers from around the blogosphere!  Lets take a peek, shall we?

My what a gripping life you do lead.
A Gripping Life

A Gripping Life’s written by Grippie

Who got dressed up to look really zippy

She then went to see

Kinks- You Really Got Me

And got kissed by a Kink on the Lippy!


Mark Armstrong wearing a Zoot Suit
Mark Armstrong Illustration

There once was an artist named  Mark

Who wore Zoot Suits while drawing his art

His courtroom depictions

Are bought with subscriptions

Cuz he’s not only funny; he’s smart!


Picture of El Guapo from Guapola

There once was a beatnik named Guapo

Whose vivaciousness never did stop-o

His rhyming harangues

Require tshhhhhh bangs

And for cheesesteak? He’ll get stopped by a Cop-o


tig Zendictive Logo

Whenever your day’s going bad

And about up to here you have had

There is wisdom galore

In Zendictive’s blog drawer

So dash over . . . before you go mad!


Bird Watching

There once was a girl named Diane

Who hailed from a mighty big clan

Her depression was cured

When she prayed and God heard

Now her blog — its got many a fan!


Pink Ninjabi
Pink Ninjabi

There once was a girl who loved pink

And her blog, it makes all of us think

Each day in her journal

There’s more than a kernel

Of wisdom from which we can drink!


a painting of Lizzie C from Running naked with scissors
Running Naked With Scissors

There once was a single mom Lizzie

Whose creativity made us all dizzy

She not only writes

But her art?  It delights!

And her kids!  Oh boy!  Keep her busy!


Adair You
Adair You

There once was a blogger, Adair

Who gave us a breath of fresh air

With her kitty called DC

And her fruitcaking Aunt Lee

It’s a blog like a chocolate eclair!


Dianne Gray Author
Dianne Gray Author

Dianne is a writer of wonder

Whose home on this globe is down under

Whether eggs on her ceiling

Or from pythons she’s reeling

It’s no wonder her publishers fund her!


Buckwheat's Risk
Buckwheats Risk

Bucky she is the adopter

Of a snake and a dog , she’s their proctor

She’s been known to write

At a very great height

Cause her husband . . . well,  he flies a copter

And there you have it Dear Readers, a visit from The Limerick Lady.  And be careful now, as you never know when The Limerick Lady is going to stop by your blog . . .

Until next time . . . I love you

Let’s Just Say It’s Friday and Be Done With it!

Hello Dear Readers!  Welcome to National Slacker Day.  The national holiday I just made up!  And in observance of National Slacker Day I am rerunning a post that I wrote when it obviously wasn‘t National Slacker Day.  I hope you enjoy this sampling from the archives entitled:

How to Drink A Castor Oil Sandwich in 1949

I found this little 1949 booklet at the thrift store the other day.

Apparently, back in 1949, before Facebook was invented, people had to make friends with whomever (or whatever) they could scrape up.

Alright fine, but how hard up does a person have to be to count Pure Bicarbonate of Soda as one of their friends?

I’m talking to you people of 1949! What were you thinking making Bicarbonate of Soda your friend?  Hello?  . . . ok, fine don’t answer me.

I’ll make something up and say it’s true. That’s what you get for ignoring me!

Let’s start by pretending we live in 1949.  What else were you doing today anyway. (I mean besides pretending to be working).

As you know, the first thing to do when pretending anything is to rush over to Google and start asking a lot of unnecessary questions:

What was the cost of a first class stamp in 1949?   

Google says: $.03

Who was the President of the United States in 1949?

Google says: “Harry S. Truman”

Why did Newfoundland join the Canada Confederation?   

Google says: “You’re joking right?”

How do you write 1949 in Roman Numerals?  

Google says: “Get outta here kid, ya bother me.”

Well apparently Google got up on the wrong side of the bed this morning. So let’s try to conjure up 1949 by using this picture from 1951 that I found in my baby book and subtracting 2 years from it in our minds.

Checking to see if limbs are operable
Me and Mom (I’m on the right)

As you can see from this picture of me and Mom, 1949 was rather bleak, stark and dark. On the upside, they did have doilies (one) and lamps (one) and a window (one).

And even though you don’t see any “friends” in this picture, I’ll bet you anything if you were to go into the kitchen, you would have found Mom’s besty, Pure Bicarbonate of Soda, relaxing on the kitchen shelf, at the ready for Mom should she suddenly need Dear ol’ Carby.

OK, now that our minds are firmly ensconced in 1949, let’s just pretend something came up, and we are going to need our new BFF, Dear ol’ Carby, to come to the rescue.

Let’s say we were in need of . . . oh I don’t know maybe a . . . CASTER OIL SANDWICH?

Apparently back in 1949, there was some weirdness going on. First, that a Caster Oil Sandwich was actually on any menu at all, and second, that  it was a sandwich  you were suppose to :“Drink while effervescing.” 

I don’t know about you, but I rarely effervesce when I drink sandwiches . . . but that’s just me.

What’s say we toddle back  over to Google, shall we?  And let’s ask Google why anybody would want to drink a Caster oil Sandwich:

Under what circumstances would someone drink a Caster oil Sandwich?

Google says: “Get outta here kid, you bother me!”

Fine be that way!

If you need me, I’ll be in the kitchen with Dear ol’ Carby preparing a Caster oil Sandwich for our new besty, Goog.


Until next time . . . I love you

33-Word Trifecta Challenge: Strutner VonPuddlepants Makes a Decision

Hello Dear Readers!  This weekend’s Trifecta Writing Challenge is to write 33 words using a picture of a pigeon as a prompt.

Strutner VonPuddlepants Makes A Decision

Strutner VonPuddlepants had his feathers in a twist.

Turns out Polly cheats . . .

Yesterday — a crow from skid row.

Today — some french fry scavenger.

Luckily Strutner VonPuddlepants knows a cat who owes him a favor.

empire state buidling pigeon
Strutner VonPuddlepants decides to move on.


Until next time . . . I love you


Photo Credit:  ZeroOne/ BY-SA

Life Is Very Beautiful

Hello Dear Readers.  I am happy to announce something wonderful.  My daughter, Nikki, and her husband, Matt, welcomed their first daughter, Lily Lucille, to her new life on January 15th  in the wee hours of the morning.

Lily Lucille Kaiser

Lily Lucille and Nikki Kaiser
Lily Lucille and  Nikki

Life is very beautiful . . .

Until next time . . . I love you all

Trifecta 33 Word Writing Challenge: A New Beginning in Alphabetical Order

This weekend’s Trifecta Challenge is to write 33 words about a new beginning.

A New Beginning in Alphabetical Order

There’s no way I’m going!

Be patient, Mr. Hines.

I won’t go!

Here’s the bus. Everybody line up!  Alphabetical order!

No not me!

Yes, Mr. Hines, you’re between Mr. Himmler and Mr. Hitler.



Bus to hell is always late
“Dang! That bus to hell is always late!”

Until next time . . . I love you

The Pillsbury Cookbook People of 1967

Hello Dear Readers!  Today we will be thumbing through this 1967 Pillsbury cookbook to see if we can get a glimpse into the lives of the people who populated the 1967 pages of Pillsbury’s world of cooking.

1967 Pillsbury Time Save Cook Book

Join me as I open some pages, won’t you?

Much of Marriage happens in the kitchen?  Get out!

Here we find Über Exuberant Pillsbury Husband and Pillsbury Wife happily enjoying quality togetherness perusing the pages of their Pillsbury Cookbook, the pillar upon which their Über successful marriage is entirely based.

a couple looked at a Pillsbury cookbook

Candlelight remembered . . . That little restaurant . . . His laughable attempts to duplicate a secret sauce . . . because in 1967 Pillsbury Husbands were apparently total bozos . .

man and woman enjoying Pillsbury Cookbook together

Of course, in 1967 not only was Pillsbury Husband a Bozo, so was his offspring, Pillsbury Bozo Junior.

Here we get a glimpse into the mind of Pillsbury Bozo Junior.  While most boys his age were dreaming about hitting home runs or winning the Indianapolis 500, Pillsbury Bozo Junior was dreaming

about this:

Pillsbury dough boy dreaming A bowl of technicolor yawn enclosed inside a tumorous spleen!

and this:

1967 boy dreaming of food

A vision of rolled turkey roast and Jiffy Quick Dressing with Snappy Sweet Potatoes . . . shh . . . don’t snap too loudly Snappy Sweet Potatoes or you’ll awaken Pillsbury Bozo Junior from his glutenous slumber!

Oh and we can’t forget this:

Pillsbury boy dreaming of pumpkin pie

Pancreas stuffed Pumpkin pie and candied Christmas Balls! Sleep tight precious, Pillsbury Bozo Junior, sleep tight.

And just as the people who populated the Pillsbury Cookbook of 1967 were starting to get boringly predictable —

–with all their joy and all their internal organs galore — The Pillsbury Cookbook People of 1967 suddenly throw in this thought-provoking page of strangeness:

Pillsbury Cookbook 1967, bong bong

So ask not for whom the bell tolls, Dear Reader, it tolls for thee Pillsbury Cookbook People of 1967.

Until next time . . . I  love you

It Came in the Mail: So You’re Going to Die

Dear Readers!  Exultation at the mailbox!

The American Automobile Association otherwise known as Triple A Life Insurance Company was kind enough to send me a Notice that I’m going to die — it’s just a matter of time . . . but until I do can I please send them some money?

Look how official the Notice is!

Junk Mail from Triple A
How can I not send Triple A money when they went to so much trouble to make this Notice — with my very own name on it!

And best of all, there’s no Medical Exam Required! 

All I have to do is answer a few simple questions to see if I qualify.  Well, Dear Reader, I think you will agree that that’s not just wonderful, that’s frigging wonderful!

And More Great News

If an insured member, such as myself, is diagnosed with a terminal illness that will cause death, such as my own, in 12 months or less?  No Worries!  They’re not even going to go back and try to figure out where I lied on medical questionnaire they sent me!  (Ha! Suckers!)

And yet, I — as the person who will be dead in 12 months or less — will still be eligible to receive a lump sum Accelerated Death Benefit amount that my spouse can use any way he wants to — like finally taking that Mexican vacation to forget he was ever married to ol’ Linda whatshername!

Man sunbathing by a swiming pool
“Waiter, hand me my sombrero and get me another margarita please? . . . and not so much salt this time . . huh? I’m in mourning.”

Isn’t that just Frigging Wonderful Dear Reader?  

. . .  uh oh . . . wait a minute . . . . hold the phone . . . I just read further down on the page and it says:

If you receive an Accelerated Death Benefit amount, we will deduct a  processing fee of $75.00


So let me get this straight, Triple A.  You’re saying that when my poor spouse is in Mexico crying his eyes out –beside himself with grief — trying to choke down a couple of Chimichangas and a large pitcher of margaritas and sadly salsa dancing with Senoritas, you are going to have the audacity to charge him with a $75.00 processing fee?

Well that just sucks the frigging right out of the wonderful, Triple A.

You can just forget the whole thing!

Until next time . . . I love you (but that doesn’t go for you Triple A)

Another Attempt to Cheer Up Edgar Allan Poe

Hello Dear Readers!  As you may  know, this blog sometimes takes it upon itself to attempt to cheer up America’s most bummed-out pen-pusher, Edgar Allan Poe. 

Guess what?  I'm taking a two week vacation at The House of Usher!
“I am smiling.”

It seems Edgar just got back from a much needed vacation at the  House of Usher.  Let’s ask him how it went, shall we?

Hey Edgar!  How was your vacation?

During the whole of a dull, dark, and soundless day in the autumn of the year, when the clouds hung oppressively low in the heavens . . .

Oh sorry to hear you didn’t have very good weather.  I hope you managed to get outdoors a little bit anyway.

I had been passing alone, on horseback, through a singularly dreary tract of country . . .

Oh great!  Then you got in some horseback riding.  Good for you!

 . . . as the shades of the evening drew on, within view of the melancholy House of Usher.

Did it actually say “melancholy” in the brochure?  And you chose it anyway? What were you thinking?

 . . . and at length found myself, as the shades of the evening drew on, within view of the melancholy House of Usher . . .

You should have turned right around and gone home, Edgar.   For heavens sake, Edgar, for once in your life use that over-sized-melon brain of yours to do something besides scare and depress yourself.

I know not how it was –but,

Oh now you’re just making excuses!

 . . .with the first glimpse of the building, a sense of insufferable gloom pervaded my spirit.

Oh don’t pretend like you didn’t like it, Eddy. I’m beginning to think you live for that kind of thing.

I say insufferable; for the feeling was unrelieved by any of that half-pleasurable, because poetic, sentiment . . . 

Edgar! Your not making any sense.  Calm down!  Here breath into this paper bag.

with which . . . gasp . . . the mind usually receives even the . . . gasp . . . sternest natural images of the desolate . . .gasp . . . or terrible. . . . gasp

Okay that’s not working.  Hang tough, Ed,  I’m going to go see if I can find your laudanum.  Where’s your medicine cabinet?

–upon the bleak walls –upon the vacant eye-like windows –upon a few rank sedges

Okay, well, I’ll look in all three places.  Just sit down and try to stay calm.

 . . .and upon a few white trunks of decayed trees . . .

Okay, okay!  I’ll look there too.

 . . . .with an utter depression of soul which I can compare to no earthly sensation more properly than to the after-dream of the reveller upon opium . . . 

Opium!! Okay that does it.  Get in the car.  I’m taking you to rehab.

 . . . there was an iciness, a sinking, a sickening of the heart –an unredeemed . . . 

Get in the back seat.  Watch your head!

 . . .dreariness of thought which no goading of the imagination could torture into . . .

Yeah, yeah, whatever you say Eddie . . . buckle in!

What was it –I paused to think –what was it that so unnerved me in the contemplation of the House of Usher?

I don’t know, Edgar, but for next year’s vacation, why don’t you do us all a favor and just plan to go to Hawaii?

notepad from Westin Hotel and Resorts

Until next time . . . I love you

Weekend 33-Word Trifecta Challenge: Earth’s Annual Checkup

The Earth

was this weekend’s 33-word Trifecta Challenge prompt.

Earth’s Annual Checkup

clip art of sick world globe

I’ve got this migraine earthquake, Doc.

clip art doctor

Hmm. . . your temperature’s high.

clip art of sick world globe

I’m itchy too.

clip art doctor

Because your scalp’s crawling with people.

clip art of sick world globe

What?!?  Gross!

clip art doctor

I’m sending you home with some prescription mega-hurricane medicated shampoo.

clip art of sick world globe

Thanks Doc.


Until next time . . . I love you

Linda’s 33 Easy Steps to Writing a Killer Blog Post

Blog picture in pastels

Linda’s 33 Easy Steps to Writing a Killer Blog Post

1.    Pour one cup coffee

2.    Sit down to computer.

3.    Sip coffee.

4.    Spit coffee back into cup; return to kitchen

5.    Discover coffee maker broken.

6.    Locate someone to blame, if possible.

7.    Return to computer

8.    Stare at tree out window

9.    If no tree out window, take trip to nearest garden supply store

10.   Purchase sapling, return home, plant sapling outside window.

11.    Resume staring out window into space tree will occupy in three to five years

12.    Return to kitchen for danish

13.    If no danish available, graham cracker may be substituted.

14.    If no graham cracker available, soda crackers or  Ritz cracker can be voted upon.

15.    If no voters are present, a blindfold may be used to cover eyes

16.    Cover eyes; pick box.

17.    Remove blindfold

18.    Discover you picked soda crackers

19.    Realize you wanted Ritz Crackers

20.    Put blindfold back on.

21.    Pick one

22.    Repeat until box of Ritz Crackers is chosen

23.    Return to desk

24.    Eat entire box of Ritz Crackers

25.    Locate can of air to blow Ritz Cracker crumbs off  keyboard and face

26.    Spin clockwise in desk chair

27.    Spin counter-clockwise in desk chair

28.    Take trip to nearest drug store

29.    Purchase Pepto Bismal

30.    Return home; take Pepto Bismal

31.    Lie down on couch

32.    Fall asleep; wake up; return to computer

33.    Reblog post from yesterday

And there you have it Dear Readers, Linda’s 33 easy steps to writing a killer blog post! 

Until next time . . . I love you

Buddy, The Main Dog and Lucy the Back Up Dog

The Main Dog and the Back up Dog

I remember once Dave Barry pointing out that most families have a main dog and a back up dog.  When my kids were growing up, we had just such a situation, their names were Buddy and Lucy.


There was our main dog, Buddy, a Cocker Spaniel who we bought one afternoon after stopping by the pet shop “just to look.”    Buddy had been hard to sell because he was way too big to properly represent his breed in any kind of aesthetic way.  I think Buddy might have had the same condition as Clifford except Buddy wasn’t red.

drawing of a dog that might be a cocker spaniel or a poodle
Our Main Dog, Buddy (actual size much bigger)


And then there was our back up dog, Lucy, whose parents were purported to be Cairn Terriers.  Lucy, however, grew up to resemble a miniature coffee table with bugged out eyes more than she resembled a Cairn Terrier. Lucy’s parents were ahem . . . how to put this . . . brother and sister.  We always referred to Lucy as our little Egyptian.


Dog with carrying coffee cup, magazine and wearing Egyptian hat
Lucy walked like an Egyptian coffee table

If you were holding Lucy when you opened the front door to find, say, a Jehovah’s Witness or roofing salesmen, Lucy would wait until you were talking and then she’d stick her tongue inside your mouth and then back out again in one smooth, rapid-fire motionleaving you to wonder if you should acknowledge what just happened to the total stranger or if you should simply ignore it and hope it was quicker than a Jehovah’s Witness’s or Roof Salesman’s naked eye could detect.

Jehovah's witness shocked expression
“No I didn’t just see anything.”

Back to Buddy

Now Buddy was horribly sneaky, and horribly horrible at hiding his guilt.  Sometimes we would come home to find Buddy with this expression:

drawing of guilty looking cocker spaniel
Uh . . . there was a little accident while you were gone . . . heh heh . . .

which meant that while we were away, Buddy had binged on his favorite, decadent guilty pleasure, the garbage.

One day, we came home to find Buddy with “the look” lying next to an empty package of hot dogs which had previously been thawing on the kitchen counter.

It seems in our absence, Buddy had somehow managed to climb up on a stool   jump onto the counter,  grab the package of hot dogs then fall off the counter shattering his elbow all in one unsmooth, uncoordinated move. The hot dog package was empty however, — so, knowing Buddy, I’m sure shattering his elbow was well worth it.

We rushed Buddy to the vet and Buddy came home with his leg in a cast up to his armpit   The vet gave us strict instructions not to let him run for at least six full weeks.

Of course an hour later, in the joy of the homecoming — my daughter, Nikki, who was two — threw the tennis ball for him and Buddy raced across the back yard as fast as he could  to retrieved it for her (bless his heart!).  His leg finally healed but he always had a limp.

cocker spaniel with a cast retreiving a ball for
“Here’s your ball kid, ow!”

Buddy also had a strange quirk, when it came to my friend Laura. 

Whenever Laura came over, Buddy, who was normally house trained, would poop on the rug right in front of us.  One day, Buddy even went so far as to climb up on the dining room chair put his front two paws on the top of it and tip it over into the family room as we sat visiting then, of course, topped off his performance by pooping.

Another time, when Laura was over, Buddy somehow got into the refrigerator vegetable drawer and  pulled out a carrot that had a long green stem on it.  He brought it into the family room, where Laura and I were visiting and then, with carrot in mouth, topped of his performance by pooping.

Anyway, I think it’s fair to say that Buddy, the main dog, and Lucy, the back up dog, lived their entire lives as though they were auditioning to become the world’s weirdest circus dogs.  And oh how we loved them for it!

Until next time . . .I love you