A Bit About Me

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Along with my daily duties as founder and head writer of HumorMeOnline.com, in 2003, I took the Grand Prize in the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest (also known as the "It Was a Dark and Stormy Night" competition). I've also been a contributor to "The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" and the web's "The Late Show with David Letterman". I also occupy my time writing three blogs, "Blogged Down at the Moment", "Brit Word of the Day" and "Production Numbers"...and my off-time is spent contemplating in an "on again/off again" fashion...my feable attempts at writing any one of a dozen books. I would love to write professionally one day...and by that I mean "actually get a paycheck".

27 July 2010

Blind Ambition

I'm in Walmart the other day and we needed to get new band-aids. We pick up this one box and it has Braille on it. Now, I realize there are blind people out there and this is probably a good thing to do - they have menus in Braille and such...but, picture this scenario if you will:

A blind person walking around in Walmart trying to find the band-aids fumbling around with 20 million other products on the shelves that don't have the Braille "band-aids" raised dots on them...knocking things over left and right.

First off, I think the blind person would probably have had someone "not blind" drive them to Walmart, right? Most likely - unless they came on a bus - but since there's no buses where I live to go to Walmart...I totally discounted that idea.

Anyway, if they had a "not blind" friend, wouldn't they just ask them for the band-aids? A "not blind" person doesn't need to have the little Braille dots on the package in order to find them. Or perhaps, in a perfect world, a Walmart worker would see the person needed aid of some sort and offer to help them out...but since this has probably never, ever happened in recorded history...it probably wouldn't then, either.

So, okay, the blind person goes to buy the band-aids and pulls a $20 bill out of his wallet. It has no little raised dots and the cashier gives him change back for a $5. Then the blind person takes the band-aids back home and puts them in the top right drawer in their bathroom.

I'm not blind - but if I put them in the top right drawer of my bathroom - they'd probably still be in it when I go to look for them later (no pun intended). And, if I closed my eyes and went into my bathroom right now, I'm sure I could deduce which box in the top right-hand drawer is band-aids - c'mon it's not shaped like a tube of toothpaste or the jar of Vaseline. Even if I had eight boxes of other stuff in there shaped just like a band-aid box, I could always open one box, stick my fingers inside and go "Nope, not band-aids...nope again...yep, band-aids".

So what is the friggen REAL reason Braille is ON the band-aid box???

I figure the band-aid people were gathered around their conference room one meeting-day thinking of new and innovative band-aid technology and couldn't really think of anything new in the adhesive, print, or bendy realm...so one guy in the back who was filling in for his boss who was enjoying his "Three Martini Lunch" piped up, "Uh...how about Braille?"

Three of the people sitting there laughed - but the guy in charge, in typical board-room executive decision-making fashion, fired them and appointed "George the accounting dweeb" head of "Box Design" and the others learned an important lesson about stifling all laughter until you get back to your cubicle.

The executive-in-charge then told some other dweeb guy to gather up demographics costing in the hundreds-of-thousands of dollars to ascertain if the mere presence of Braille made the company look more sympathetic than their competition - and, face it, who really needs to look more sympathetic than a maker of things like "ouchless" band-aids?

No one.

So, naturally, I bought the other brand of band-aids.

That'll teach them to let three people go in this economy...the unsympathetic bastards.

25 July 2010

It's Just a Matter of Time

Well, it happened yet again to me last night.

I call my on-call doctor at 2:00 a.m. to let her know I have increasing right-side abdominal pain. Pain, by the way, which I mentioned when I saw a physician on Monday. Pain, which I mentioned when I saw another one on Tuesday, and pain, which I mentioned to yet another one, on Wednesday.

But, I guess I broke some unwritten on-call doctor rule: I woke her up.

I didn't mean to wake her up - I don't know what time she goes to bed - if she would have called me at 2:00 a.m., I wouldn't have had any problem with it. And, silly me for not timing the severity of my abdominal pain at a "more convenient" time for her.

I got the requisite "Are you vomiting, diarrhea, fever, etc.?" questions - and I answer, "No, no, no, well, yes...but I'm on a drug that does that anyway." The rest of the conversation (and my fleeting ongoing phone-call thoughts) goes a bit like this...

"My pain? Right lower side - it started getting really severe about 30 minutes ago...altho it seems a bit better now. I was just concerned it was appendicitis."

Well, I'm 48 - apparently not the "ideal" age for appendix problems. Silly me, again...I should have checked online first before I called...altho I've been chastised by nearly every single doctor about online self-diagnosis, even if that diagnosis was via WebMD or MayoClinic.com.

"Can you wait until tomorrow to go to Pri-Med?"

"I hope so...what do YOU think? I called you to make sure it didn't sound like appendicitis or something else to really worry about."

"Well, only YOU know if it's bad enough to go to the ER or wait. Apparently it was bad enough for you to wake ME up at 2:00 a.m. to tell me about it."

Well, so sorry to have bothered you - next time I'll try to time my increasing pain better - in fact I'll just set up on appointment next week to have it. (No, I didn't say this...but I was thinking it the whole time.)

Bear in mind I was once verbally scolded by a doctor who said I shouldn't eat apples at night. It felt like a big chunk was lodged in my throat...and, after waiting about five hours for it to dissolve or slide down, I finally gave up and called. I remember the exact exchange like it was yesterday...

"You should be in bed at 4:00 a.m., SLEEPING, like I'm going to get back to doing once I hang up the phone. If you can still breathe...YOU'RE NOT CHOKING!"

"Well, I didn't say I was choking, it just feels like it's stuck in my throat like right where..."


Yes, he hung up on me in mid-sentence. This happened about eight months ago.

So, after I hung up the phone last night...I cried and cried.

I don't want to be a pain in the butt - I don't want to call doctors on weekends - I don't want to call them at 2:00 a.m. - but, isn't it also a fact that an "on-call" doctor...IS on-call?

I didn't call because I had an eyelash in my eye. I didn't call because my cat scratched me. I called because I honestly was worried I was having something which could lead to a even worsening situation and/or death.

But, after I cried, I cried and cried some more -- feeling like I'm just a waste of skin and promising myself the next time, if something happens off-hours or on weekends, I'll just ignore it - preferring death to their guilt-trip-laden third-degree "How dare you bother ME!" treatment.

Seriously, I felt worse AFTER I hung up than before I called...each of these times...and just ended up taking my Ambien and hoping I'd wake up the next day.

But after several nonchalant dismissals of this nature (for both myself and my children), I'm wondering how many people actually get treated this way - or is it just that I've gotten the "red-flagged...oh it's that whiner again" reputation? Did I do anything I oughtn't to have done? How should I handle things like this in the future?

I don't sit around my house thinking of ways I can piss off yet another doctor. I don't like going to the Emergency Room to waste six hours of my life. But I don't want to be another one of those "Oh, she shouldn't have waited to call" death statistic, either.

I fear if I call to complain or to report them (it's happened with base doctors several times)...I'm sure to get treated worse in the future...and it's not like I can change doctors like I do underwear. So, have any of you been where I've been with this? And if you have...or even if you haven't, what is your suggestion to me?

Truth be told, I've had some very nice responses from on-call doctors...especially the ones in Birmingham. In fact, I've never been treated badly by any doctors in Birmingham...why, I haven't a clue.

(Written, but not published, about a year ago...on a Friday.)

18 July 2010

Hollywood Lights

So I'm sitting here watching the "X-Men Wolverine: Origins" movie and I'm perplexed as to which super powers this "Gambit" guy has...so I Google it up.

Apparently, according to Wiki, Gambit (and I always thought he was a girl in the comic books) "Possesses the power to manipulate kinetic energy, as well as hypnotic charm. He's also skilled in card-throwing, hand-to-hand combat, and the use of a staff". He also used to be a smoker in the comic books and so was Wolverine...but, of course, as no one can be seen smoking anymore, they made them both quit. Wolverine still chomps away at cigars in the films...but, hey, he can't get hurt...so no harm done, right?

So, I'm thinking...hmmmm...if I'm a kid trying to emulate Gambit - I can see this line of reasoning unfold:

Geez, I'm no good at card throwing...can't get a single one of them to go inside that hat on the floor. I have absolutely no clue what kinetic energy is, so I probably don't have that. I never win any arm-wrestling contests, so that's right out...and I've failed to hypnotize my three-year-old sister altho I did manage to get her to throw up once...but that's only because I told her the spaghetti she just ate was actually worms. As far as that staff thing goes...well, I can't even hit a friggen baseball. But...

...I can take up smoking and be
just like Gambit!

I'm always amazed at reasoning.

There's people...correction, mutants...with giant blade claws and teeth and some with powers of invisibility and others that can shove their bare hand up the business end of a tank's grenade launcher barrel...causing it to blow up from the inside out, and of course, walk away totally unscathed. There's a guy with laser eyes and people...er mutants...who basically can't die no matter how many times you stab, throw them into things, or shoot them with your guns...but heaven forbid one of them is also SMOKING when he's tossing back a few brewskies or whiskeys at the end of the day down at some sleazy logging bar that caters to low-lifes and mutants.

So the thing that gets the ax...is smoking? The body count is about 497 and that's just fine and dandy; hell, even Wolverine just had some wild sex with the "powers of persuasion" chick. That's all okie dokie...just as long as there's no post-coital light-ups.

It used to be common knowledge that the code in much older films for "we just had sex" was the "fade to black" gradually panning back to some dual smoking scene. The sex wasn't shown but the deep cigarette inhalations were. Nowadays, the sex is shown but the cigarettes aren't. Go figure.

Oh, well...let your kids turn into gun toting, card playing, knife brandishing, authority rebelling little mutants...because that's acceptable. And while your little Pyro-emulating kid is testing out what he can do with fire, just make sure the cigarettes are way out of reach, because lighting up one of those can sure get him in a heep of trouble.

And, kids, if you're gambling on things illegally (especially in this town), be careful; you could possibly end up in jail...buying privileges with packs of smokes. Oh, wait...but you wouldn't know anything about that. A fine up-standing non-smoker like yourself - never seeing it on television or movies...well, I'm sure if you think real hard, you can find something else to trade while you're in there.

Well, it seems we've now come full circle...and if Hollywood would allow me to show you that circle, they'd look a little like this:

I best tone this down or I'll probably be attacked by the anti-smoking coalition campaign people...or maybe I'm just blowing smoke up your...but...read this if you didn't know it already.

16 July 2010

Way Too Loaded

I'd like to know why I'm always the "lucky" one to end up behind the guy who has the back of his truck loaded with a refrigerator and dryer and has either his friend or a bit of clothesline securing it down.

If there's a guy and his passenger out there attempting to hold down two sheets of plywood on top of his car - by golly, you can bet I'm the one behind him on the road. You can also bet it's a "no passing" zone for the next twenty miles.

I absolutely hate log trucks. I hate big trucks in general, but those log trucks typically barrel down the road with those nearly rusted out side restraints...bowed out like they're about to give out - at any given second.

And what's with that measly tattered red/orange flag sticking out from the shortest log they could reach? You know the one...the one that signals "Look, I have a long load and if it's longer than it's supposed to be...tough luck...I have a red flag attached. It absolves me of anything which might happen."

And while I'm at it, what's up with those "Not responsible for vehicle damage. Keep back 200 feet." signs? Any moron can tell you that if I'm reading the sign...I'm a lot closer than 200 feet.

Boy I wish it were that simple for everyone. I could use a couple "Not responsible for speeding or causing any accident" signs to put on my car. They'll go nicely with the one I'll enclose when I send out my checks, "Not responsible for insufficient funds" - and that one goes very well with my "Not responsible if I misinterpret everything you say because: 1) My cat has a better grasp of the English language; and, 2) Was that three or four verb tenses you just used there? And what does "he might could of" mean exactly...or at least kinda sorta.

But back to driving behind trucks carrying things which are destined to fly off and kill me...

I was not aware the laws of basic physics cease to exist inside and around a personal conveyance. Nothing will fly off if you use either your hand, your friend, or a bungee cord. These scientific properties are also known world-wide...but only by a select "intellectual" few.

I once was fortunate enough to witness a rarity in the "things falling off trucks" realm. One of those car-carrying trucks...the kind car companies use to haul the cars to the dealerships...decided it would be a good idea to start jettisoning it's load, one by one, onto the lady a couple cars in front of me. They always look like they are precariously perched on that skeleton of a frame truck to start with...and they look like if you didn't line up Tab A with Tab B, something would unravel. Well, sure enough, one of those angled dangling cars decided to go for it...and took a relatively giant leap of faith. And the "stupid woman" following right behind it, who apparently assumed the cars were somehow affixed to the truck, got quite an unpleasant wake-up call. They started rolling out like toppling dominoes...and she was the first to get hit. The man in back of her, as equally non-psychic as the woman in front of him, hit her. By the time it was over, it looked like the aftermath of some giant kid and his Matchbox cars.

Back to the log trucks...

Did I mention I was deathly afraid of those things? Well, I am. I think I actually saw one that didn't have the scary bowed-out metal side arm railings. Once. Each one always looks like it's about to spill their unbalanced load and when they make that left turn, I have visions of being decapitated...right thru my driver's side window. My impaled skull, just dangling there...that ratty red flag neatly implanted in it for added effect.

You might think I'm a bit paranoid or overreacting, but I know these things tip over, spill their load and kill people. I've read about it and seen it on the news a few times, and so synonymous are they with Alabama (I never saw them in New Jersey), "My Cousin Vinny"'s opening scene features one. While it was probably lost on the inhabitants of the other 49 states, living in Alabama as I have been for the last twenty, I immediately "got it" and sympathized.

And I always think back to an accident which happened here in Montgomery on 5 May 2004. Driving down Interstate 85, 19-year-old Aaron Prevatte did what any driver would do - he swerved to avoid hitting a metal ladder which had fallen in the road, undoubtedly from not being properly secured. The resulting series of events, including flipping his car four times and being trapped inside...led to his untimely and more importantly, totally avoidable death.

I tell that story often and remember it more than I tell it. I don't know why I do, for some reason it strikes an internal chord with me. Al Stewart once sang in his song, "Post World War II Blues", "I never met him, so it may seem strange. Don't some people just affect you that way." And that's how it is with me and Aaron Prevatte.

So, every time I see a load haphazardly strapped on, things sliding back and forth untethered each time the brake or accelerator pedal is employed, tangled metal pieces entwined so high, so rusted and so sharp, no one wants to touch them, let alone tie a canvas sheeting over them, and people trying to maintain their footing to steady an awkward upright entertainment system...I think of how easy it would have been to take the extra time to have tied it down right. Sure, it might take you longer than you planned...you're tired and you want to get home as soon as possible, especially before it rains. But that driver in the other car wants to get home as soon as possible, too. NOTHING gives you the right to do a shoddy job and risk ANYONE'S life because you just couldn't bother taking the extra time to do it right.

And if you feel compelled to do this and I see you on the road or highway...I will call 9-1-1 on you. I've done it before - I'll do it again. It's just not a chance I'm willing to take. I couldn't live with the fact of finding out I could have possibly prevented an accident and didn't call. Hopefully I've made a difference...hopefully someone who reads this will choose to make a difference, too...whether by calling the police or tying their load down better, or by not trying to wing it with holding that mattress down with their hands alone.

If that mattress flies off and maims or kills someone, trust me, you're NEVER going to get ONE good night's sleep on it...probably not for the rest of your life. No matter how many times you buy a new one and have it delivered properly and safely...you still won't be able to get rid of those recurring dreams.

Is that really a risk you are willing to take?

Vehicle-related road debris (VRRD) accidents are typically totally avoidable...and they are responsible for a fair share of accidents and deaths each and every year.

The "AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety" breaks down Alabama's facts regarding VRRD on Page 42:
http://www.aaafoundation.org/pdf/vrrd.pdf . "Triple A's site can be found here: http://www.aaafoundation.org/home/

This blog was inspired by the unfortunate accident which befell Aaron Prevatte and is dedicated to his memory and to the memory of many others who also lost their lives by individuals who took shortcuts, used inferior materials to secure their loads, or who really shouldn't have been driving with loads the way they did...be it rain, snow, too fast, bad brakes, etc.

If we choose now to remember in vain...these memories will only continue to grow in numbers. If we choose now to remember with actions and words...perhaps one day there will be only distant memories.

(Originally written but never published in 2005.)

09 July 2010

Eschewing the Obfuscation of the Profundity

"You've made an egregious error."

"A what?"

"An egregious error."

"What kind of error?"


"What does 'egregious' mean?"

"You know...something that's egregious."

"Yeah, but WHAT does it mean?"

"Something that's egregious is...you know. Look, if YOU don't know what it means, I'm not going to explain it."

"So, in other words, you don't know what it means?"

I have to admit - I enjoy doing this: calling people on it. Many people use words they have absolutely no clue what they mean. Oh, sure, they've heard the words plenty of times...and always in the context they use them -- and they are using them correctly, but they are merely "parroting" what they've heard. They honestly have never bothered to look the word up in the dictionary.

Personally, between you and me...I do it, too. Using "ten-dollar words" can be awfully impressive and downright convincing when, say, you're trying to get a lower rate on your telephone bill...or talking to your doctor...or trying to impress the stranger you met in passing...or speaking up to that guy in the office that just irks the hell out of you.

Using big words is like that animal making its hair stand on end to appear larger than they really are. Big words said by certain (not all) people make them appear smarter than they really are. But, just as a turkey displaying its feathers - strip away the feathers and what you've got left - well, is still a turkey.

I guess we all need to ruffle some feathers once in a while and appear larger than life. Words, are, after all...mightier than the sword...or at least they supposedly are when you write them down with a pen.

And good thing (at least for me) there's spell-check, too, as when I originally "penned" this blog, I spelled it "aggregious".

Sheesh...talk about an egregious error, right?

(Originally written, but never published, about two years ago.)

05 July 2010

...and now for something completely different...

There was some "stuff" going on at the Montgomery Advertiser's blog site which got quite a few people misquoted and misinterpreted and such...so that's why I wrote this blog. Just ignore the first part and skip to the "question" part. I'd love to see what everyone out there answers to these two questions as well. :)

I thought it would be fun to head away from the "blogger" inspired blogs saying who did what and who didn't do what and who said something they didn't at all mean that way...to find out more about our fellow bloggers here on the paper.

Of course, no one has to read this or comment/participate...but I think it would be fun if we knew something about each of you other than the bios that are up there and the comments that you make.

So...I thought a couple questions might shed some insight about what makes each of us tick...and might make us realize we have something in common other than blogging.

What are some of your favourite movies and why? (Like which ones you could watch over and over and over again and not grow tired of doing so.)


What are some of the sites you look at routinely? (Dare I say it...just copy/paste the url of each one...and tell us why you like it.)

I'll go first. :)

Some Like It Hot: Hands down THE best comedy ever in my opinion. I can watch that thing 20 million times (and I probably have) and I STILL see or hear something I missed. It also never fails to make me laugh at all the places it's supposed to make you laugh. I absolutely love this film.

My Fair Lady: Okay, Audrey Hepburn's voice was dubbed by Marni Nixon...but no one could have been as "loverly" an Eliza than her. Love her...love Rex Harrison...love Colonel Pickering...love the entire score - and I DON'T LIKE MUSICALS! That's how much I LOVE this film.

The Shawshank Redemption: It took me about 10 years after this film was made to watch it. Why? I don't know why. If I had to write a film and be known by it - and only one film...it would have been this one. Great...superb writing.

V for Vendetta: See above...only it was about four years before I watched it. Plus the V character ended up doing what I refer to as a "reverse Charlie Chaplin". While wearing a mask and only using his voice - he conveyed more expression than I've ever seen. Chaplin did it the other way around...and was also a genius.

The Fifth Element: Best sci-fi movie ever. I love this film. I love Bruce...I love Gary Oldman...I love the ride. It's a fun movie. Not one boring part.

Idiocracy: Another movie that took me years to see even tho my friend kept telling me how great it was. But he liked that Garfield movie - so I never listened...until he told me it was by the same people who did Beavis and Butthead...then I watched it. It's FABULOUS. I don't think a day has gone by where I don't quote something from this movie. It's also so incredibly...um...prescient. Too much so.

Dinner at Eight: I love old films...if you've not seen this one or The Philadelphia Story or My Man Godfrey...rent them. They don't make them like this anymore...sigh.

Anything with Cary Grant in it.

Okay...URLs I go to:

My comedy website:
http://www.HumorMeOnline.com - it's funny. Some of the best people in the world - yes world play my site. They are so incredibly witty - let's see YOU top them. :)

http://www.IMDb.com - The Internet Movie Database. I love this site - I am a trivia buff and movie trivia is something I have always gravitated towards. Hands down the best - I can get lost in there clicking and clicking and clicking.

http://www.Epicurious.com - The best cooking/recipe site out there. None even remotely come close...I don't know why others even try. And I love to cook - so this is the place for me.

I didn't want to post anything bloggy - but my friend, Chris...honestly is the best blogger in the universe. If I could write like him...well, judge for yourselves:

There are others out there - but those are the ones I pretty much go to on a daily basis.

How about everyone else?

03 July 2010

Theories About Doctors and Spies

Well, here I will sit all weekend long watching my "Doctor Who" DVDs I rented from Netflix...I also have seven hours and five minutes of "Doctor Who" shows I TiVo'd as BBC America had the good sense about them to have had a marathon last week (some tonite as well)...unlike a certain SyFy channel who couldn't bother to continue with their great tradition of back-to-back "Twilight Zone" episodes for days on end.

I asked my son to come out of his room last nite to talk about what to have for our 4th of July dinner. I'm not too sure if I will grill anything and Alex doesn't want to be bothered with the grilling chore at all; as manly a task as they lead you to believe it is. My daughter's been wanting me to make Beignets, so I guess at one point that will happen...I've only put off making them enough times that my Cafe Du Monde mix is now out of date...but since it's just basically flour and yeast...I'm willing to bet the yeast doesn't know if it's May 30th or July 3rd. Yes, I'm crazy that way...stand back...I'm a risk taker for sure.

So, because "Doctor Who" was playing, my son opted to sit down as well and, after watching the David Tennant "Doctor Who" episodes for a bit, he concluded Tennant was indeed better than the new one...altho the new one isn't bad. Mr daughter is a Tennant girl as well.

My thoughts? I'm still a Tom Baker Doctor kinda girl...and therein lies my theory.

My theory is that you like the Doctor you grew up with. Just as with James Bond...most people will tend to tell you the one they liked the best...was the one they grew up with. I liked the nice campy Bond of the 1970s...yes, don't start throwing rocks at me just yet; I can't help it, I like Roger Moore. I never thought Sean Connery was sexy until he was much older. Pierce Brosnan is hot...and the new Bond, Daniel Craig - eh...he reminds me of a much older Jason Bourne.

But back to The Doctors...I grew up with the toothy, maniacal, long-scarfed Tom Baker who elevated the show when he took it from the original droll military episodes each week and morphed the regimentation of the weekly array of Colonels and upper crust "old chaps" into something else entirely: being silly and fighting a whole different type of monster. When Baker left, a series of other doctors came and went...hardly catching a moment's glimpse of my attention until David Tennant.

David is THE best Doctor to have come along in ages. And now, his reign is no more and his replacement is this little wisp of a bow-tied man-child as the displaced Gallifreyan Time Lord. In fact Matt Smith is indeed the youngest Doctor they ever had. Matt had some big shoes to fill, but he seems to be filling them and running in them extremely well. The only issue I have is with his companion. While Amy Pool is awfully cute and makes nice eye candy for the gents...the show is being "Always About Amy" or "The Amy Show" and I don't like that. She should NOT be the most sought after possession in the whole universe. Time to give more air-time to the Doctor in my opinion. He is, after all...The Doctor.

And then it got me thinking last nite watching one of the David Tennant vs The Master (oh, how I love John Simm as The Master) episodes....that secondly to Bond's, "Bond, James Bond" phrase...announcing that you are "The Doctor" holds about...or dare I say perhaps more, distinction.

So, those of you who are familiar with both shows..."James Bond" and "Doctor Who"...who would you rather be? A time lord who saves the world or a spy babe magnet, who also, ironically, saves the world?

And which "Bond" and which "Doctor Who" do you like best? How about "Doctor Who Companions" vs "Bond Girls" for that matter...which one will always hold a fond place...in your...heart?

01 July 2010

Okay, I've Had It!

I have had it with "staycations".

I also refuse to say the word "staycation".

I will, however, as you can plainly see, type the word "staycation" over and over again throughout the body of this blog.

I have nothing against people making up words...I love to make up words and have made up my fair share of them, many times by accident, but mostly on purpose. I saw Snoop Dogg on television once and he said he loved to make words up...hence all the "fo' shizzle" talk. Hey, I'm for it. But when you have a whole society who is saying words like "fo' shizzle" and mistakenly say "pizzle" (yeah, look that one up) trying to be cool, it's time to step aside -- as you aren't.

It's like people who say "bling". "Pardon me, would you have any Grey Poupon? And by the way, nice bling there on your Rolls."

See? It just doesn't work...so stop it already!

Now we have a whole nation who can't get through ANY holiday without saying the word "staycation" at least twice in any one news broadcast...or online newspaper. The airwaves are replete with "staycations". I'm sure any minute now the Go-Go's are thinking of getting back together in the studio to take this opportunity to cash in on changing up the lyrics to their "Vacation" song. In fact, if I remain very quiet, I swear I can hear it in some commercial right now.

Do I?


Will I?


I'm not even going over to YouTube as I'm sure it's been parodied there at least 20 gazillion times already by all too eager people willing to do anything to get featured on tomorrow's "Good Morning America" show.

So, I'm calling for a world-wide media ban of the word "staycation". I'm sure there are other words which can get the same point across just as "cutely".

Let me think...

The British probably go on "holistay" instead of "holiday". Or do they do that already? No...I will not Google...will not Google...will not Goo...

...but I will Google "vacation" to see what other words I can begrudgingly massacre in the name of journalism and colloquial catchetudeness.

Break: Hmmm...I guess no one probably wants to go "spring steak"...or "spring stayk". Oh, that one doesn't work at all...forget it.

Trip: Well, people used to take acid trips back in the 60's without ever leaving their houses...but I don't think we should bring that up here, although I guess, technically, it would apply.

Rest: "Rest" sounds more like something you do after you die than during vacation...being "laid to rest" and all. "Oh, look at Bob in this beautiful antique vase all cremated and stuff...well he certainly "urned" this well-deserved rest." Okay, scrap this one, too.

Retreat: I never heard of anyone going on a retreat refer to it as a vacation. I believe msn's thesaurus is wack...but I could possibly use it this way: "Our house was being retreated for fleas and we had to vacate the premises when Terminix tented it."

Leave: I think this is more of the military variety - "shore leave" and "LWOP" and all...Leave Without Pay...ing Anything on a Hotel "LWOPAOAH"...aka day-trip. Nope. That sucks even more than the other ones.

Escape: I never heard of a vacation referred to as an "escape"...and had it been synonymous with it, Steve McQueen's film, "The Great Escape" would have come off looking more like a Chevy Chase film than what it was. "National Lampoon's Great Escape" -- "National Lampoon's Christmas Escape" - eh...has some promise...especially with that methane gas escaping scene and all. But it really is far fetched. Oh, wait...if it's "far fetched" then it IS perfect...for a National Lampoon movie but not for a catchy new wordism.

Holiday: See above.

Well, there you have it. I've completely exhausted my online thesaurus' word bank and nothing has the same ring (not of the bling kind) or appeal as "staycation" - but at least I'm trendy nowadays. And when people ask me where I'm going for vacation I can appear green and hip...and no one has to know that I'm really not going anywhere because I have no money...

...and that's fo' shizzle.