Archive for March, 2012

March 27, 2012

Tuesday Titters: Week 13, It just keeps getting more fruity

by Janie Jones

Did you hear the one about the young melons who had to cancel their plans to run off to Vegas?  Yeah, apparently the one said to the other, “Sorry honeydew, cantaloupe tonight, Dad’s got the car.”

March 23, 2012

And that takes a lot of nerve

by Janie Jones

True story.

A little over a year ago I purchased a subscription to Disney’s Family Fun Magazine for, well family fun enjoyment.  It was cheap, only $10 for a year (10 or 12 issues) so I figured, what the heck.  There were a lot of crafts and recipes and suggestions for activities I simply just don’t have time or emotional or financial resources for.  So, the magazine became a source of paper dolls for the spud.  Which was still okay, it got enjoyed in some form.  However, when the year ran out, I decided, as the spud gets three other magazines and myself two, we didn’t need another magazine destined to be cut up into paper dolls and let the subscription lapse.

Now, periodically they send me a bill for renewing my subscription.  Generally I just throw it away.  However, yesterday another notice came in the mail and I got to thinking that it seemed as though that subscription should have ended several months ago and yet here I was still getting re-subscription invoices.  Why on Earth were they still pestering me?   Something made me open the one I got yesterday, and, well, let me tell you, even if I was interested in making hot dog race cars and sock puppets and pipe cleaner- whoops! I mean chenille stem- crafts until the second Tuesday of next week when the cows come home, this letter would definitely make me change my mind about renewing a lapsed subscription:






100% absolutely just like shown.  Yeah, all in caps, too.  Infuriating.  Yeah, you betcha.  Calculated to be insulting.  I pretty much think so.

Perhaps if I wasn’t so busy I’d have made a connection before, but in the fury of indignation at such a letter, I realized it seemed like I’d seen the a relatively new issue in the spud’s room recently.  So I went on a hunt, and discovered despite never asking to renew my subscription they still appear to be sending issues, at least as of the March issue which arrived several weeks ago.  Generally when you have a magazine subscription they print the expiration date on the label, none going as far back as September 2011 had one.  What was going on here?  Which begs the question: what would possess a company to send at least 7 months of magazines to someone who’d neither asked for them nor was badgered into paying for something they didn’t order after 6 invoices?

But the audacity doesn’t end there, oh, no.  I’m totally astounded that they’d have the gall to put me in a “bad debt file” when I never asked to renew my subscription.  I imagine the reason why they are “reluctant to consider more serious collection measures” is because there is nothing to collect on seeing as I never asked to renew my subscription.  But of course, they seem to have overlooked the key reason that why after 6 invoices I haven’t paid is because I never asked to renew my subscription.  But seeing as they are still sending me issues I didn’t ask for (again I say WTF?!?) they probably think they have a right to ask me to “pay the above invoice within 10 days” hoping I’ll be a sucker and just agree to take on another year of a magazine I don’t want or be too stupid to realize I never asked to renew my subscription and think it’s all my mistake.

So, they “need to hear from [me] now,” eh?  Don’t worry Family Fun Magazine.  Oh, you’ll hear from me.  And, when I’m done contacting you, you’ll have heard more than enough from me.  In fact, every one I know will hear just how much you need to hear from me now.

As our letters never crossed in the mail, and will never cross in the mail in the future, there’s no danger that I’ll ever forgive you.  You can just take your lame little magazine and shove it up your mouse hole.

Some people just have a lot of nerve.

March 20, 2012

Tuesday Titters: Week 12, Orange-you glad I didn’t say banana?

by Janie Jones

Did you hear the one about the guy who went out with a prune?

Apparently he couldn’t find a date.

March 19, 2012

Damn you Swedish Fish and the sticky sugary goodness you leave behind

by Janie Jones

*Sigh*  I just have been to the dentist.  Apparently the stress fractures I have on my teeth at my gum line as a symbol of my many youthful years of jaw clenching in response to stress have become something he “can’t like.”  The 4 teeth sporting said fractures had been stable for the past 15 years or so.  Now, 3 of them have developed cavities and need $92 worth of fixing.  Thank goodness for insurance which covers the remaining 75%.

First it was my arthritis in my neck and upper back.  Then my tumor.  Now my teeth.  Geesh! I’m not that old, but apparently a youth and adulthood of stress is beginning to exact it’s price.  Either that, or it must be the Swedish Fish.  I mean, I live a really vanilla life.  I never smoked, almost never drink, and I’ve never been drunk.   Most nights of the week I get at least 7.5 hours of sleep and try to get 8.5 when ever possible.  I take my vitamins, when I remember, which is most the time, because if I forget for too many days I can tell that I begin to feel even more run down than usual.  I don’t exercise as much as I should, which is apparent in my Rubenesque physique, but I’m not superwoman after all and there are only so many hours in a day; what do I sacrifice for exercise time?  Sleep?  Food?  Showering?  Studying?  Attending class?  Doing housework?  Minding the spud does her homework?

So, when I say my worst vices are Pepsi (limited to an average of 1 can per day), two cups of tea per day with 3 teaspoons of sugar each, Swedish Fish (limited to six delectable little fishes per day when I have them, which really isn’t all the time) and one ice cream bar/sandwich/scoop or one tiny snack size candy for dessert 4-5 times a week, I really mean those are my  worst vices.

Okay, you caught me I have one more, I’m a worry wart with a heaping helping of perfectionist.  But I am trying to reform, honestly I am!

So, when the dentist gets on my case convinced that something particular has changed in my habits in just the last 6 months which has caused these 3 cavities then gives me a look like he doesn’t believe me when I can’t think of any significant to change my habits except that I ate about 2 pounds of Swedish Fish between Thanksgiving and February, I get a little miffed.  I mean it.  I am not aware of doing anything new and unusual apart from those fish.  And, in the 4 years I’ve been seeing this dentist, I’ve only had one other cavity in a traditional area.  It was really tiny and that was after having not had dental insurance in almost 3 years and having not seen a dentist in all that time.  Now, three cavities on three damaged teeth all with the same problem all at the same time.  Hmmm.  I admit is is weird, but I don’t think it’s that weird, I mean the teeth were already damaged. Mouth bacteria shit happens, cavities form.  Get off my case dude and get over it.  I’m not a spring chicken.  You’re not the one who has to cut back on your Swedish Fish and sugary drink vices and you’re not the one paying for the repair.

*Sigh*  He’s a really good dentist, though.  Unfortunately he just he also seems to think he knows you better than yourself.  Every time we go to the dentist for the spud he grills me about her sucking her thumb.  While she did use a pacifier until age 3 and a half, I have never seen her or any other evidence to support his belief that she has/is still sucking her thumb, finger or any appendage, toy or bedding.  He also hasn’t seen pictures of her grandmother.  It’s got to be genetic.

Unluckily for me, I have no such convenient excuse.  Bad Janie!  No more fish for you!

The Lament of the Fish Swedish

Oh Swedish Fish,

You tasty dish

You rot my teeth

And the gum beneath

Oh, you I’ll mish

Yeah, well, happy Monday to you and the fish you rode in on.

March 18, 2012

Kiss me I’m Irish, and spudisms too

by Janie Jones

So, a day late and a pot o’ gold short, here’s part of the post I meant to post yesterday; alternately titled, “Things about Janie Jones you never knew and probably never needed to know” or “Did political correctness go out of style?  No?  Well then some of you may well feel violated.”

As you may be aware, Janie Jones is not my real name.

My real name is actually very Irish.  This suits because Janie as her real self is actually Irish.

No, I can’t tell you my real name because then what would be the point of having a pseudonym.  Geesh.  Give ’em a few random facts and they want them all…  You’ll just have to trust me.  The name on my birth certificate is very Irish.

I used to work for someone who claimed to be Michael Flatley’s sister.  No seriously.  One of the other coworkers had a major wide on for him and apparently well, never mind.  Back to me.

My father’s family is actually Irish Catholic.

My father actually went on a “geneology” kick few years back and then pilgrimaged to the family burial ground up some goat path lined with rock walled fences at the top of a hill somewhere in Ireland and tested the limits of the rent-a-car damage insurance.  Now, I know, ‘somewhere in Ireland’ is pretty vague, but after they gave me my Bunratty Castle souvenir scarf I kinda tuned out the rest.

Apparently both sides of my father’s family came from somewhere abouts in Ireland circa 1830.

I like me a dirty limerick.

I used to have a button that said “Kiss me, I’m Irish.”  Yeah, me and all my teeny-bopper friends.  But mine meant something because I am.  If albeit in a rather tenuous way.  As Tilly Bud so succinctly put, everyone is Irish on St. Patrick’s Day (by the way, I feel honored to be quoted on a blog post by one of the Big Dogs of the Blogosphere.  Maybe not THE big dog, but a much bigger dog than I’ll ever be.  Thanks!) and undoubtedly this is true.  While I do have some platform to stand on while making this announcement of my claim to Irish heritage (isn’t working for Michael Flatley’s sister more than adequate support?!?), I generally don’t identify with my Irish roots because I mean I’m sure I’d be a national disgrace.

Why?  You may ask.

*Sigh*   Well, if it weren’t for bad luck, I’d have no luck at all, and that’s no blarney.  Besides can you still really be “from” a country if your ancestors have been American citizens for over 180 years?  And then, I can’t stand Bushmills.  Leif bought a bottle especially to do shots on St. Patrick’s Day, but did I say I can’t stand Bushmills?  I should have said I found it loathesome.  Furthermore, I sound ridiculous when I try to affect an Irish brogue, and I can’t even begin to make heads or tails of Gaelic.  I don’t like claddaghs be they rings, brooches or otherwise, and though I may enjoy some nice tender cabbage I really don’t like corned beef (which Leif suggested to be the meal preceding said Bushmills).  I think my Lithuanian Viking is more Irish than me.

Still, the following made me more than a little miffed:

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I’m probably breaking all kinds of SOPA copyright laws here, but I couldn’t refrain from sharing.  Who approves this stuff?  I’d like to specifically draw your attention to page three, wherein Scholastic News very astutely acknowledges that “Today, most Irish people live in houses.”  Really?  You don’t say?

Seriously, I know this is meant for first graders, and that they can’t really include the kind of limericks most of us are familiar with which feature chin licking men from Nantucket, but come on.  Let’s not be absurd here.  Of course Irish people live in houses, and apartments, or flats or brownstones or something like.  Egads.  They have for centuries.  Only a rare handful of people anywhere ever actually lived in castles.  What a bunch of blarney.

Unfortunately, this is the best public school education the Great White North can provide.  Because of this exact kind of drivel I had a conversation something to this effect with the spud last week:

Spud:  Momma you know what the little Irish people wear?

Me:  Um, clothes?

Spud:  Little green suits.

Me:  Um, I’m pretty sure people from Ireland wear clothes just like you and me.

Spud:  Uh-uh.

Me:  Honey.  I’m very sure my Irish friends do not run about in little green suits.

Spud:  Yes!  They do!  They wear little green suits and top hats and live under rainbows.

Me:  I think you mean leprechauns.  They aren’t real.

Spud:  *Sighs dramatically*  That’s what I said.  Irish people!

So, dear Tinman and Speccy, you can rest assured that we know you live in houses (with green patio furniture) and I’m doing my best to persuade the wee one that you aren’t merely 2 feet tall, slipping down rainbows and wearing jolly green suit coats and breeches.

I’d best keep to claiming to be just your average dull American.  Still, as even hacks like me can be Irish on St. Patrick’s Day, we not only had our green shamrock pancakes, I also made shamrock shaped chocolate chip cookies.

March 17, 2012

Top o’ the mornin’ to ya

by Janie Jones

Yes, well it’s not morning anymore, but I meant to put up a post this morning.

In fact, I had plans for an impressive post, or at the very least a long wordy post, but my day has escaped me.  In fact, my whole week has escaped me.  What with my internet sporadically being up and down I’ve often been unable to post even when I have the time.

But, I did make time for bangers and shamrock pancakes in honor of the day:

Well, Happy St. Patrick’s Day.

March 13, 2012

Tuesday Titters: Week 11, With sincerest apologies to all my Irish friends…

by Janie Jones

You knew something like this would be coming, didn’t you?


What’s green and stays outdoors all year ’round?


Patty O’ Furniture


* Hangs head in shame *