Jen’s Jewels of Judgment

I’ve decided I am going to start two running columns here (Travel Tips for Twits has many more entries to come…and now this…random judgments).

This one is not for the faint of heart and is particularly meant for the ladies….

No one wants  to use a public restroom and wonder who was murdered there…

bloody_knife-400x238….so PLEASE FLUSH.  Then wait for the flush to finish.  Check again.  Does it look like someone died?  FLUSH AGAIN.  Repeat until the crime scene is clean.


Travel tips for twits

I apparently owe you guys a new blog post so here it is – angry 5am ranting from someone who got far too little sleep last night….

1. Before you get on an airplane sometimes they randomly ask certain people to show ID. No wait, actually they require that of everyone all the fucking time since like the beginning of time. Perhaps you should know that and actually have an ID ready or at a minimum not on the bottom of the 4th bag you plan to search.

2. Along with the ID they also like to see a boarding pass aka proof that you’ve actually purchased a ticket for said flight. See above.

3. Water or iced tea or glass bottles filled with your beverage of choice are not allowed through security. Haven’t been for a really long time. In case you haven’t heard there was this little thing called 9/11 that changed air travel. In case this is still news to you no matter how many times you wave the bottle around and say you are thirsty the rules are unlikely to change just for you. Oh you’re thirsty? I didn’t know. Go right ahead.

4. When you see everyone else on line taking off their shoes and putting them on the belt here’s a thought – You should too. And if your shoes lace up to the knee or have very involved buckles you may want to start the process in advance.

5. And if you are traveling with a fucking cello, upon going through the scanner you should remove your fucking cello from the belt before putting on your shoes, your belt or your many hipster scarves.

Thank you in advance.

I hate encores…


They bug me.  I don’t quite know why, but here are some thoughts:

  • I’ve already paid for my music.  Why should I have to clap for it?
  • How many encores will there be?  None?  One?  Two?  The uncertainty is stressful.
  • It fucks with my planning. Will the encore be the song I have been waiting to hear?  Will it be a song I don’t care about?  Should I leave early or should I wait?  Nobody knows.
  • The musicians know they are coming back on, the stage crew knows they are coming back on, and so does the audience.  Why keep up the pretense?
  • It activates my mean side and then disappoints it.  I start to hope that no one will clap and no one will cheer.  I want to see what will happen.  They’ve planned the encore, so will they do it anyway or will they limp away feeling unloved? Alas, that never happens.  Despite my stubborn efforts to remain seated and absolutely silent, no one follows my lead.

Instead, I respectfully suggest that musicians just perform until they are done and we can all go home.  No muss, no fuss.

The gnome in my drawer

Yes, I know that sounds dirty.  (It doesn’t?  That’s just me?  Oh well, forget I said it then.)

Anyhoo, every morning I take a shower, get dressed and brush my teeth.  And every morning this happens:


What is this mysterious amoeba-shaped stain, you ask?  I have no idea.  I have examined the situation.

Starting with the stain….Slide2

Must be toothpaste…right?

Then the bathroom vanity…


But there is no visible stain on the vanity.  Hmmm!

But it must be coming from the vanity.  There is no other explanation.

So I resort to contorting myself into this candy cane like shape to brush my teeth while ensuring that no part of my body goes anywhere near the vanity.


And still…


Then in desperation, I turn to science.  I begin to measure shit…


Okay, I really measured nothing, but when you are standing next to the sink, it ain’t that hard to estimate.

Fuck.  This is the only explanation…Slide1

A mischievous gnome who lives in my vanity drawer, lying in wait, to squirt stuff on me.

(Still not dirty?)

Men, step away from the bottle…

…the cologne bottle that is.  What is it with you guys?  You appear to be well-groomed, well educated.  Clearly you care about your general appearance.

You seem to have mastered the ability to do things that require at least some level of manual dexterity:

  • You carefully comb and gel your hair
  • You shower and shave
  • You tie shoes, ties, etc.
  • You iron or convince/pay someone else to

Yet, when it comes to putting on your cologne, something happens.  You either do not understand the purpose of cologne or you have no ability to properly apply it.  I really don’t know what happens?!?!?

But in case you have no idea what cologne should do, cologne should make you smell nice to those close to you – in a subtle way.  Those close to you should think you smell so good that they want to get closer.  They should think that you smell good, because you are who you are, not because they can name the brand of cologne you are wearing.

Cologne should not be perceptible from across Penn Station or throughout a train car.  It should not make those around you nauseous or cause their eyes to burn.

Now that we’ve covered that possibility, if you are perhaps incapable of operating the cologne bottle, just don’t do it.  A shower will suffice.  Or have your wives/girlfriends apply it for you.  Women for some reason rarely have this problem.

The world thanks you for listening.

To my baby girl…

I know, I know, you’re not a baby.  You wear underwear and everything and you’re almost 4!

But I remember sitting on the couch 4 years ago tonight, anxious to meet you the next day.  And I remember holding you in my arms for the first time, just like it was yesterday.

So I am sorry to have to tell you this, but you will forever be my baby.


You know that I love to cuddle with you, hear you sing, watch you dance, hear you tell me “I’m just messin with ya!” and watch you be an “art worker”.  You also know that you infuriate me and drive me crazy.

But what you don’t know is that when I look at you, I am in awe:

  • I admire your strength.  You fall down and get right back up.  You don’t let other people stand in your way or upset you.  When you want something, you go out and grab it.
  • You’re so damned cute!
  • You give 110% to everything that you do, whether you are laughing or drawing a picture or throwing a fit.
  • You don’t make acquaintances, you make friends…everywhere you go.  You are out-going and friendly and you open your heart to new people without a second thought.  I can’t count the number of times you have invited strangers over to our house, because they were your new best friend.
  • You have a confidence I envy.
  • You have a way of being tough as nails and super gentle all at the same time.
  • You find a way to make things work the way you want them to, regardless of the obstacles you face.  My first indication of this was when you were about 13 months old.  You kept trying to put your head on a pillow on the floor, but Danny was insistent that the pillows be in a very tall pile, one that went over your head.  Every time you stole away a pillow to lie on, he would take it and put it back on top of the pile.  After a few minutes of this, you stopped, left the pile, grabbed a stool, dragged it over to the pillow pile (all by yourself), climbed on the stool until you stood above the pillow pile and lied down on top of it.

It was then that I knew that you were going to take life by the balls take charge of your life and make it work for you.

I look forward to watching you grow up into the amazing woman I know you will be, but remember you will always be my baby and I will forever reserve the right to kiss the tip of your nose or squeeze your cheeks.

I love you more than you know!  Happy birthday Sweets!

Mother’s Day Musings

So* I came home for a day and a half between business trips to spend a day and a half with the kids.  Luckily for me, that day just happened to be Mother’s Day.  (Un)luckily for you, I am about get mushy.  Feel free to stop reading now and wait for a post more reflective of my usual snark and sarcasm!

But one thing became abundantly clear to me in this day and a half – since I have had kids, I have become one of those people who appreciates the little moments in life.  I think that may be my favorite part of being a mommy, how my kids can create these instances when I stop and just feel lucky to be me, living the life that I lead, even if it’s just for a second.

Just a sampling of things that made me smile and feel lucky this weekend:img_0018

  • The freckle on Danny’s nose
  • Waking up to a warm hand (or even a warm foot) on my shoulder in the morning.  I swear Samantha has a tiny furnace hidden in her body somewhere, and she is all about sharing the heat.
  • Being reminded that Danny is just like me – the boy cannot keep a secret.  His Daddy was reminding him that they had a special mother’s day errand to run bright and early.  Danny said yes, “We have to go out early and get things to make…..uh, dinner” with an exaggerated wink and big toothless grin.  Way to keep that special breakfast a secret, kid!
  • Listening to Samantha enthusiastically cheer “Go baseball, go!  I knew you could do it!!” at the LI Ducks game.
  • Hearing Danny sing “I’m a nineties chick!” with such conviction and knowing he has absolutely no idea what that could possibly mean.
  • Enjoying a long, relaxing shower only to look at the bathroom door to see that Samantha slid a collection of drawings under the door to surprise me
  • Danny doing the chicken dance, shaking his butt like only he can (or can’t as the case may be)
  • Watching my girl fling herself on a barstool and order a chocolate milk as confidently as if it was a dry martini

Thanks for the moments, kids!   I can only hope you feel 1/8th as lucky to have me as a mommy, as I do to be your mommy!


*I wonder what my high school English teachers would say about my habit of starting blog posts with the word “so”, like we are mid-conversation.  I am going to claim it is a hallmark of my signature style, especially since I often start conversations in the middle as well.

Putting on my prude hat…

…so pay attention.  It doesn’t happen often.

The other day, the kids were playing in the backyard and I was sitting at the table with my laptop, listening to Pandora.  My typical playlist is a mix of obsolete music – hair bands, 90’s pop, hard rock, etc.

So here I am listening to Motley Crue, when the sounds of Taylor Swift lyrics float over to me from the swingset.  Talk about a culture shock.  It seems my son is singing.  I try to ignore it.  Then he moves onto Fun and then Katy Perry.  I give up fighting it and turn on Today’s Hits Radio.  At least when the boy sings these songs, they are cute.

But normally, he sings along to the radio, so he doesn’t hear the curse words…and holy shit are there a lot of curse words!  I thought rock music was the devil’s music.  Motley Crue is nowhere near innocent, but I trust them with my child’s virgin ears.  Why are all singers these days trying to corrupt my innocent children?  Why are these songs so full of foul language and so damn catchy at the same time?

If my kids are going to curse, they are going to learn them the old-fashioned way – from their mommy.

A Question & a Concern

So this is about All-Star Celebrity Apprentice again.  If I had any sort of attention span, I could turn this blog into a kick-ass apprentice recap site.  Alas, I do not.  I barely have the attention span to watch the two hours, nevermind recap them.

But a question…


Are the scissors multiplying or merely growing larger in size?



When I first saw Dee walk out, my first thought was “I need that coat!”

DeeAnd that concerns me!

I am not sophisticated (surprise!!)

So I actually saw another movie this weekend. This time something critically acclaimed and award winning because my friend and I were trying to be fancy. Instead we were mostly bored.

What is it with critically acclaimed or independent films? Are there moments of brilliance? Absolutely. But why do these moments have to be surrounded by such mind numbing dullness?

I know they want things to feel real. Yes watching people read is super relatable! But I don’t want to watch it. I wash dishes every day too. But there’s a reason no one pays to sit in my kitchen. (And yeah that was a lie but the point is still there even if it only happens 1-2 times a week but then there is added excitement like the how long does it take milk to solidify mystery)

And would a true soundtrack kill anyone? These movies are always full of so much damn silence. I know my life doesn’t have a soundtrack. But here’s a news flash I go to movies because they are supposed to be more interesting than life.

I think these movies are so well liked because you just spent the last two hours desperately clinging to those moments of brilliance like the life savers they are so they’re all you remember. That combined with the relief you feel from seeing the closing credits means you leave the theater feeling happy.