Fighting Jealousy: Slaying My Green-Eyed Monster

When our air conditioner broke, we had to turn the air off for a few hours. It happened to be one of the hottest, most humid days Chicago has seen in a while. As I was coming into the house from outside, I felt the cool relief of our well-insulated home. The humidity was gone and the temperature felt lower.

Shortly after coming inside, I went down to the basement to help my boyfriend fix the air conditioner. Not 30 minutes later, I walked back upstairs to grab something, and was hit with a wall of hot and stuffy air from the exact same space that was cool less than an hour before.

The temperature hadn’t changed drastically. There was no rapid rise in humidity. But coming to that same middle ground from the opposite end of the temperature spectrum modified my perspective. I felt that the temperature was warmer because I was experiencing it from the cold angle while earlier it felt cooler because I had experienced it from the hot angle.

Shortly after experiencing this weird body temperature conundrum, my brain started connecting some crazy dots. That same physical change in perspective can be applied to emotional perspective. It was an analogy that physically made sense to me. And there are so many other ways to consider how your perspective affects your life.

The same situation can be completely different for two people or even the same person at a different time in his or her life. It all depends on our current perspective.

slaying my green eyed monster

I used to get ridiculously,  unequivocally jealous of other people. I coveted what they had, whether it was more blog followers, a book deal, money when I was broke, a relationship when I was single, vacations, etc. My jealousy held no bounds. I would think horrible things, like why can’t I have that? or I deserve that; why is it theirs, not mine?

My green-eyed monster was uuuuuuugly. I hated her, but I didn’t know how to slay her. I knew I was in the wrong, but for the life of me couldn’t make it stop.

And then one day, it hit me over the head like a pile of rocks. It was recent, and I’m ashamed to admit how recent. But it was something the unbelievably beautiful Samara said. At the wrong time, her words may have gone completely over my head, but at the time she said them, I was in a very solid place. I was surrounded by strong, brilliant women who were supporting each other. It was after I began really reading a lot of deep, heartfelt essays that put my own world into a different light. I had a new perspective and didn’t even realize it had happened.

So when Samara said something along the lines of, Why does anyone feel the need to compete with each other? We should be building each other up. There is enough success for all of us.

And oh my God did that resonate through every fiber of my being. It made sense on such a deep and powerful level, that I began to see more clearly the way to remove that green-eyed monster from my soul.

Even further still, the aphorism, “a rising tide lifts all boats,” which is often used in reference to economic changes was mentioned countless times this summer in reference to the writing community I call home. If we support each other, cheer each other on, help each other out, we are a part of the tide. And this can be applied to any aspect of your life.

We can all slay our green-eyed monsters.

Does this mean I never get jealous? Of course not. I’m only human. But I can be jealous without releasing that ugly kraken from within me. Instead, I try really really hard to isolate those twinges of jealousy before they overtake all of me.

When has your perspective changed how you react or respond to a situation? How do you battle jealousy? What inner-demons are you fighting with?

This piece was originally published on Sisterwives Speak.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Your Prayers Are Answered, My Child

Did you know people send prayers out into the universe via The Google?

I did.

Do you know how I knew that?

Because their prayers come to me.

I’ve decided to take it upon myself to send those prayers up to the big guy. We have a history, you know. I would pray for things. He would give them to me. And it would take three months for me to figure it the fuck out. Like my first period.

And Brian.

So in honor of life’s little miracles, I thought I’d share some anonymous prayers I’ve recieved–in my search terms–so you, too can help these people out.
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Like this guy. He just needs a little help.

one day god will answer my prayers

I’ll send him a message for you.

She Works Hard for the Money

Someone help this lady help her friend. She just works too damn hard.

good please pray this woman gets of my friends back she works way toi hard for this shit

There was a little spelling mishap, so she tried again.

good please pray this woman gets of my friends back she works way too hard for this shit

I think she still missed one. No big deal. You guys, will help her, right?

They Really Need Their Period

Whether they don’t want an unplanned pregnancy or they’re dying to join their friends in riding the cotton pony — damn,  that’s my new favorite phrase — help these ladies out and say a little prayer for them.

prayer to get your period

prayer to get my period

thoughts & prayers to make my period come

Oh thank God. She got her period!

after i prayed i found out i was in my period so was my prayer accepted

This girl is still waiting.

i still pray for my first periods but i dont have them

Sweetheart,  you can always pray. I promise.

when should i assume i can’t pray when i’m on my period

This one is blaming her period on not praying…

missed prayer and got period

Well, when you’re looking for period prayers, you know where to go.

His Girlfriend Needs Your Prayers

He knows he got a good one. Can we pray that she sticks around?

pray for your girlfriend that you have now

The Mother’s Curse

Ah, the mother’s curse. My grandma wished it upon my mom, and my mom wished it upon me. Can you even handle another Chrissy is this world? Let’s pray for all the mothers who end up with daughters headstrong and brave, just like them.

remember what you were like and pray for your children that’s just like you

In the End it’s all What You Believe

just believe your prayers are answered

That’s right, my friends,  just believe. And if you’re a believer,  go ahead and help my search term visitors with their praying.

Do you ever search The All-Knowing Google for answers to your prayers?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Things I’m Learning About Twitter

Twitter is this magic beast; it’s quite the antithesis of Facebook, really. A lot of people shouting and pretending to listen, but no one’s really fighting (most of the time) because they’re caught up in their own jam.

Unless you’re following hashtags and that’s a whole ‘nother world. But if you’re not following hashtags, and you’re just following people, there’s a rabbit hole of awesome that you, too, can experience in the flesh.

When you're playing the Twitter game, these tips will help you make the most of this social space.

I’ve had a Twitter account for years, but I feel like a total noob, which obviously isn’t stopping me from telling you how to win at Twitter. This is what I’m learning.
1. Twitter likes you best when you’re hot, lazy, and love food. The number of people who followed me over the course of the year was completely correlated to the attractiveness of my profile picture (you know what a selfie whore I am) and the number of times I mentioned cheese. My best tweets all involve me not wanting to remove myself from bed, but desperately craving food or eating an embarrassing number of doughnuts. Whatever. Twitter, I get you. This is why we’re friends.

2. It’s all about go big or go home. The way to grow your Twitter followership? Actively immerse yourself in the Twitter. I mean, if you’re lazy and love food, you’ll love wasting your time on Twitter. I do. There are a lot of hilarious as fuck people out there. I think to myself, “can I keep you?” And then I follow them on Twitter. And I can keep them in my pocket. It’s like magic.

3. You can make friends all over the place when you’re weird. That go big thing about Twitter being a time suck? It’s because you’re supposed to socialize in the blue bird sandbox. Get crackin’ and find the people who get your humor/sentiments/anger/love/weirdness. They’ll welcome you with open retweets and faves. Unless you’re a dick. And even then, someone probably likes you. Again with the magic.

4. The pound sign is out. Remember when that was what we called the #? Hashtags are fun to make up but totally not required to make friends. Don’t worry you can still hash your heart out on Instagram. Or you can run with the Twitter pack that plays the hashtag game.

5. It’s all in the hips. Not really. I just wanted to say that. Honestly, I think it’s all about who you are. If you’re weird, like food a little too much and hate getting out of bed, you’ll probably enjoy being my Twitter friend, but if you’re the complete opposite,  I’m absolutely positive there are people who’ll get you too.

What do you like best about Twitter? Which is your favorite social network? Why?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Felt Up By a Minion and the Objectification of Male Models

The BlogHer15 Closing Party was something of a shit show.  By that, I mean,  I was hungover from the night before and felt like shit, and there was quite a show.

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Sure, BoyzIIMen stopped by for a 3-song set. When song three played and it wasn’t Motown Philly, I was ready to start throwing things. But they appeased me by rolling right into a fourth number, Motown Philly for the win,  without me needing to throw things or beg for an encore.

 

A video posted by Quirky Chrissy (@quirkychrissy) on

 

 

And yes, Nick Cannon (and I’m still not entirely sure who he is) tore up the house with mostly decent tunes. I didn’t dance all that much (but I was out on account of back pain).

And then there were the minions. They showed up to party with the bloggers, and boy did they get fresh!

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But the real stars of the McDonald’s show at Pier 84 in New York were the dozens of male models Mickey D’s hired to serve us chicken nuggets and cheeseburgers.

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About 30 minutes into the party I started noticing that every single server was a dude. And almost all of them were totally attractive dudes. Sure they were young, and made my “29” years seem older…but they were pretty.

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I mentioned this to some of my friends…and they all looked at me like I was nuts.

Wait, Chrissy, you mean you DIDN’T notice this right away like everyone else?

Well, no, guys. I didn’t.  Upon entering this party, I was on a singular mission,  and that mission was chicken nuggets. I was thinking with my hangover. By 9 pm, the hangover had lifted like the morning fog, and this party took on a whole new world.

A world that involved a lot of ridiculous photography of male models in McDonald’s tee shirts that read I’m  Lovin’ it.

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Me too, McDonald’s.  Me too.

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When I realized what McD’s had done, I was almost afraid to say anything for fear of this being something other than politically correct. And then I didn’t care. Because nothing goes better with chicken nuggets than hot dudes.

They served us food and drinks, removed our trash, and brightened our evening for the one of the best closing parties this girl’s ever been to. I hung out with old friends and new, and reveled in the party at the pier.

The dudes were like the happy meal toys, and I wanted to collect them all. So before the party ended, I raced around the event searching for the servers. It was indeed a happy meal.

And so it was that McDonald’s made nuggets and cheeseburgers sexy by serving them with a side of hunk.

The Men of McDonald's at the BlogHer15 Closing Party really knew how to show us girls a good time.

And not one woman there was complaining about it.

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

BlogU15: The Good, The Awkward, and The Bloody

For those of you not obsessively stalking me on social media (First, PSA – what are you thinking? You can savor little bits of me in small doses, and each social media outlet is like an adorable and ridiculous puzzle piece that fits into the grander scheme of me, people. Go forth and use those shiny social media buttons at the top of my page and love the shit out of me…), you may not know that I was waking a roommate up each morning to “Good Morning, Baltimore” from Hairspray as we relished a weekend of blogging camaraderie at the BlogU conference. I’m going to tell you now that my roommate, Vicky, loved me and wouldn’t trade me and my Breath Right nose strips for a toffee and sea salt chocolate bar any day. I think.

How to Prepare for a Blog Conference - get your wardrobe, feet, nails, beer and eats on.

The only picture I have of my middle school outfit was from Thursday night packing. My rainbow pants were a recognizable conversation starter so I could ensure people spoke to me (and I didn’t retreat into the introvert side of my brain).

I survived three glorious days on almost 14 hours of sleep total, pretending I was in college again. I had the time of my life with a beautiful mish-mosh of (mostly) women (plus like 4-ish dudes) bloggers as we learned, partied, played and learned some more. On Friday, at the crack of dawn, Brian loaded my suitcases into the trunk of my car as I prepared to embark on my first solo trip in more than five years. I realized I was terrified as we made our way to Midway Airport, and told him as much. I explained I thought I was going to throw up, and asked what would happen if it wasn’t as amazing as everyone said it was? And what if no one liked me? What if I got nervous and shy and said nothing?

You may not believe me, but it’s true.

Bloody Mary

I’d only met ONE other person attending BlogU – Aussa Lorens (who, after hanging out with a couple times at two blog conferences, I think I can safely say that we’re BFFs). So I planned to start my afternoon with Joules, who wasn’t attending the conference but lives…sort of nearby. We had a killer delicious brunch and were joined by a hundred other bloggers. (Or like 15. Whatever.) I had the most beautiful bloody Mary ever to grace the planet, one which I will never be able to replicate (until my imminent return next year).

The most beautiful bloody Mary ever

Miss Shirley’s Bloody Mary – tomato, shrimp, Andouille sausage, cheese, okra, meat thing, pepadew pepper, jalapeno bacon.

So the weekend began with a bloody…which turned out to be my theme for the weekend. In many more ways than one.  The drink was loaded with deliciousness and just a hint of spice. Someone told me to look at it like it was the biggest dick I’d ever seen…this is the result:

I split breakfast apps with my new friends, McCall and Anne. I had to sweet talk the server into splitting up our check a little more than the original plan (ONE check per table and max FOUR credit cards. I promised we’d tip well, and I’m pretty sure we did), but it worked and we were all golden. Then I bid farewell to Joules and piled into a car with four other bloggers and their luggage (me carrying the most, of course).

Bloody Shaving

At dinner on the first night (a lot of these stories are going to revolve around eating and drinking. Deal with it, yo), I was drooling over the dessert table, when Jen Simon started swooning over some magic half brownie thing. I already had 27 desserts on my plate, so she was like, “go try mine. There’s my table. Don’t tell them you know me.”

Not one to miss out on a golden opportunity of awkward moments, I strolled over with a fork, sat down, and dug in. Everyone laughed and I made a new table of friends, including the super sparkly Mary. So then, Jen walked up and stood behind me, chatting. And I felt something warm and wet on my lower back…because there was some hot chocolate drizzle rollin’ down my back. She felt bad, but I didn’t. I had planned to wear my rainbow pants and tee shirt to the pep rally and Term Paper of the Year (and was beginning to feel a bit on the self-conscious side) but now I had an excuse to change. I brought enough clothes, and decided I wanted to look adorable with all the other people (seriously, everyone I met was adorable).

I decided that if I was changing, I should probably shower. And if I was showering, I should probably shave. Well. If you may recall from my shit that’s hard for chubby girls post, I’m not exactly great at shaving my legs. And I almost always regret this beauty regimen. But I braved the fucking shower yoga so I didn’t feel completely self-conscious in front of so much amazing talent…and cut the fucking shit out of my legs.

The Many Faces of Selfie Queen Quirky Chrissy

At the end of the conference, I was dubbed Queen of the Selfies…This is probably why. There were more selfies of my narcissistic self than me with other people on my camera. Thanks Sarah for being the only photo bomber.

Bloody Towel

After taking a miniature battle axe to my legs, I toweled off with the tiniest towel ever to grace my body. Poor Vicky almost caught a glimpse of everything but my left tit, because that’s all this terrycloth bitch could cover. I set it on the towel bar in our shared suite to dry, where the sight of it broke the amazing Chris Dean’s heart. As one of the few people lovely enough to believe that my hair really is THIS RED…she was disappointed to discover the bloody towel hanging on the rack. As a faux ginger herself, she knows the site of a hair-dyed towel when she sees one. But…did I mention Vicky and I got to share a quad with Chris and Anne (from breakfast)? Because that was definitely a highlight.

Bloody Period

Well…thank GOD Jen Simon spilled hot chocolate on my ass (literally), because if she hadn’t…I wouldn’t have showered. Or changed. Because I was pretty thankful when I was cut off mid-sentence telling Vicky that I was glad I didn’t have to worry about getting up and speaking during the Term Paper of the Year…as they announced my motherfucking name…

I looked at Vicky and Sasha, shell shocked. “Umm…I think that’s my name.”

“Woohoo!”

I stood up. I looked around like a deer in headlights. “What do I do?”

“I think you go up there.”

“Oh. Fuck.”

I didn’t even know what I was reading. I couldn’t remember for the life of me what I submitted. And then I stood in front of 200 people I hadn’t introduced myself to yet, and read the story of my first period. Thank GOD they laughed when they were supposed to laugh. Because speaking about bleeding from my lady bits (and not fucking knowing it) in front of brilliant writers was the most terrifying thing ever. I gripped the podium like I was hanging onto the edge of a building and prayed that I didn’t fall down. And when I was done, I was shaking. Thank you, Vicky for capturing this on video:

Bloody Shoulder

The rest of the weekend seemed to go pretty well and remained relatively accident-free. Until I was sitting in Jen Mann’s session about writing books (because books). I was listening, learning, and laughing (I love it when people are funny in real life…especially when they make the universal tongue-in-cheek sign for blow job), when I looked down and noticed a significant amount of blood welling up on my left shoulder. Of course, I reached to touch it and ended up with blood on my fingers as well.

The girl sitting next to me (who my mind is COMPLETELY blanking on and for that I’m so sorry. If that was you, please let me know so I can credit you for your sympathy) searched her purse for a tissue, but came up empty, apologizing profusely. So I improvised. The thing about having a former life as a catering manager is that you learn to improvise quickly. I ripped out a piece of notebook paper, wiped my bloody fingers, folded the paper up, and used it to apply pressure/soak up the blood.

Bloody Shoulder wiped up with paper

And took a picture. Obviously. ( I haven’t mastered my new camera phone yet, which is why my head looks gigantic)

Bloody Dance Floor

First, you should probably be listening to this song as you read this next part. It’s one of my favorite jams. And this section is all about jams.

 

Okay. So. At the AMAZING middle school awkward party hosted by Nickelodeon, I would love to tell you I was the belle of the ball, and since there were about 200 belles, so I guess I’ll say I was just one of them. Dancing my freaking ass off like I was 22. I seriously believed I would lose like 10 pounds after an epic dance floor experience, but alas, not one pound. Anyway, I was really hoping to hear, The Bad Touch, because I know all the words and was SO ready to dirty rap for all my new friends. After an appletini or two, I walked up to the DJ and explained he NEEDED to play The Bad Touch because it was a quintessential song from my existence, and I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if he didn’t play it.

An hour later, I was jumping around to Madonna, singing Like a Prayer, and pretending I was 22. I’m a firm believer in dancing the lyrics, so when Madonna sings, “down on myyyyyy knees…” I got down on my knees like a motherfucking boss.

I popped up and continued dancing, feeling a little twinge of pain in my knee, but it wasn’t unbearable. As the song was ending, The Bad Touch came on and I was READY for this shit. Until I accidentally looked down and saw that there was mass quantities of blood gushing from my knee to my ankle. I stared in horror…deer in headlights AGAIN…and I was ushered off the dance floor. Evacuated, if you will. I kept trying to go back because they were playing my JAM and I was missing every glorious second of it.

Thanks to Jana, this moment was not completely lost. I only wish I had waited to wipe the blood that was dripping down to my ankle...

Thanks to Jana, this moment was not completely lost. I only wish I had waited to wipe the blood that was dripping down to my ankle… And let’s talk about that awesome friendship bracelet handmade by the beautiful Jessica D’Pirate who woke up early and practiced yoga with me and Jessica.

Jana brought me paper towels and took a picture. Others offered to bring me alcohol. Estelle searched her purse for a Band Aid (I had them…in my dorm room) which she couldn’t find. I stood there crying about missing my song. Then, I took Estelle up on her offer of Purell because I wanted to emotionally snack on mass quantities of gummy candy and I couldn’t do that with bloody hands. So I cleaned up my act and finished the evening in style.

I also spent the rest of the evening yelling at people to be careful because I thought I knelt on glass, because there’s no way I was just…bleeding from the dance floor, right?

Bloody Squirrel

The next morning, walking to breakfast, my new friend Amy commented on the insanity of the local squirrel population as they swirled and swung from the tree tops. I just chalked it up to college campus squirrels, as the Bradley squirrels were a little…well…squirrely too.

But as we were walking BACK from breakfast, we happened upon the saddest scene in the world. A squished squirrel, posthumously named Skippy by Tracy, lay bloody in  the middle of the campus road, as his little buddy gingerly walked up to him and nuzzled his battered body. I cried a little bit watching this happen. Can we just pause for a brief moment to recognize Skippy?

Thanks.

I did actually engage with other people...I promise.

A few other highlights to prove that I did actually engage with other people…I promise…including Estelle, Jen Mann, Sasha, Jen Simon, Aussa, Andra, Audrey, Ashley, Jenn Rian and Vicky

Bloody Delayed Flight

After my flight was delayed an hour, and I woke up from a power nap on the floor of the boarding aisle, I made my way to the back of my aircraft and passed the fuck out. For about an hour. I woke up, gave myself a good scratch and…wait for it…started bleeding on my right shoulder. I cursed silently and decided that my bloody weekend needed to be over, and so I went back to sleep and woke up in Chicago (or something like that).

I made so many more friends and wish I could tag every damn one of you, but this post is already at an unreadable length. But you were all fucking magical. I learned a LOT. I laughed constantly. I found my people. Every single person that was there was my people. And I adore you all. My nerves were quickly replaced by friendships that will last forever.

A big fat thank you and shout out to Nehemiah (Boogie Wipes, Kandoo, Dreft Home, Downy Wrinkle Releaser and Febreze In-Wash Odor Eliminator) for reimbursing my ticket as part of a random drawing for members of their blogger team)!

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Knock Knock Jokes, Domestic Abuse, and Cheese Porn: How You Found Me

Well, kids…it looks like it’s about time for another rousing episode of “What Ridiculous Search Terms Brought Your Crazy Asses Here.”

Knock Knock Jokes (1)

As an SEO in the real world (you know…that day-to-day gig that pays the bills so I can spend time hanging out on the internet with you people), I find it fascinating to backtrack and find out not only what page you landed on when you searched one of these ridiculous phrases, but how far you dug to find it. What I’ve discovered, you crazy loons, is that some people will dig into more than 8 pages of Google search results to find the random drivel I’ve produced relative to your search term. If you missed the first edition of random search terms, feel free to go read that post. I’ll wait.

And some of you are some seriously sick fucks.

The ones that appreciate my wit and wisdom

Postuniversity Slackerdom: You’re looking for advice on how to be a slacker after college, aren’t you? Well, you’re in luck. All you need is a DVD of Office Space, and you’ll be on your way to the sweet life. Just, you know, keep an eye on your stapler…and the guy who never gets cake. If you’re still in college and want to avoid reading all those books? Don’t visit my post about graduating as an English major without reading books for class that also links to an amazing book blogger (my best friend) who reviews all those pesky books you’re supposed to be reading. Because you should be ashamed of yourself. Go read a book.

Knock knock jokes with Chrissy: Well, you obviously love a little classic humor with a classic humorist. I applaud your choice in knock knock jokers. Because Brian and I have the BEST knock knock joke offs.

How to sprain my knee: I’m not quite sure you understand what you’re asking here. But if you really want step by step instructions, I suppose you can see the many ways that I’ve sprained my own knee…but I still don’t recommend it. If you’re jonesing to get out of gym class or something, cramps sometimes work…and headaches…migraines maybe? I don’t recommend actually going to the lengths of REALLY injuring yourself…weirdo.

 

It’s like you totally get me!

That awkward moment when someone is staring at you and you pretend not to notice: OMG I hate that moment too! I mean…not that I’ve ever creepily stared at anyone…low whistle

Professional contest winner: I love that you people search for this. I especially love that this is one of the top searched topics for this blog. Just the other day I won a free dinner for Brian and I from Whole Foods. I love winning shit. Hopefully my year as a professional contest winner can help you achieve your dreams.

Scattergories fights: This was searched quite a few times, as well. It makes me feel a little better about myself that I’m not the only one who can’t play Scattergories without fighting…

I don’t know if you’re going to find what you’re looking for here…

Fuck my corduroy jeans: I’m not sure whether you’re looking to do something naughty with a pair of pants or if you’re really angry with them…either way WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU? I Googled that shit to find out why you might search for that…and there are some very dirty Yahoo message boards.

I can wipe my own ass: And we’re all very proud of you.

Girl chug vodka: Okay, fine. You might find what you’re looking for here.

Vodka Chug

I really liked cheap vodka when I was 18.

Now, I really like good vodka.

Now, I really like good vodka.

You sick and twisted humans.

Cheese porn: Don’t worry. I already Googled it so you don’t have to. This is actually a thing. Not my thing, but it’s a thing.

Fucked up scary bathrooms for Halloween: Fret not, dear fucked-up friends, I can help you with my Halloween bathroom decor.

My bare ass: Are you looking for MY bare ass or your own? I’m confused. Please explain.

Stop Googling this shit and go get help. PLEASE.

Someone tried to suffocate me: Call the police. Tell someone. I searched for this and the first page results are for domestic abuse and, well, me. So if your husband, boyfriend, friend is trying to suffocate you  (with or without a pillow), get help.

Can my boyfriend suffocate me with a pillow?: No. Why? Did he try? Were you laughing and joking about it or is this a serious query resulting in the aforementioned search term? If so, get help. If you’re laughing, well…I can’t blame you. Brian and I laughed about it too. (*I have to add that I, in no way, condone domestic violence. I only condone weird and random conversations with your chosen partner in life.)

What’s the weirdest thing that you’ve Googled? If you own a website, what’s the weirdest search term you’ve come across that led to your site?

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Something Looks Different…Did You Change Your Nails?

Good morning, blog friends!

You may have noticed a little something new around here…perhaps a few little aesthetic changes…

You’re probably asking yourself,

Hey Chrissy, did you change your hair?

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Well, now that you mention it, I did visit Catelyn, my friendly local stylist, for a refresh last weekend…but that’s probably not what you meant.

Hey Chrissy, did you change your nails?

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Have I mentioned my Julep obsession?

In July, I signed up for a free Julep maven box with a few polishes and some other fancy beauty goodies…with just one box, I was hooked. The nail polish lasts for a week (ONE COAT my friends. Okay, one color coat – with top and bottom coat, of course), and the colors are AMAZING. They treat mavens like gold (read: all the discounts and mystery boxes). I’m getting away with myself. This isn’t even a sponsored post. Of course, because I’m a Julep affiliate, if you were to click on my link and order a Maven box, I might receive a tiny monetary incentive…but I can promise you it’s worth it. Right now, you can get the City Lights Welcome Box free to try Julep for yourself.

Whoops. Totally got off track here.

Back to your probing questions…and the reason I showed off my freshly painted digits.

Hey Chrissy…did you seriously paint your nails to match your new site design?

Is the Pope Catholic?

Of course I did. Would you have expected anything less ridiculous?

Well, shoot. You’re practically my hero!

Man, you guys are seriously awesome in my head.

I bet you paid someone to make you site look this fancy, didn’t you?

And just like that you lose faith. Rightfully so, of course. Yes, I paid the LOVELY Carol of Pink Haired Pixels to make my site look amazing. I met her at BlogHer, obsessed over her hair and did way too many Twisted Shotz with her before singing karaoke. I’m also thrilled to pieces with her work.

Now that I’ve rambled, what do you think of the new digs? Are you as smitten with pink and teal as I am?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

I’m Like a Word Magician

So, you already know that I’m a word ninja and a grammar Nazi. But did you also know that I’m a word magician?

I'm like a word magician

Last week, Brian and I made our way over to DreamHost’s DreamCon (This is when my favorite hosting company, DreamHost <–[That’s an affiliate link with a shameless plug and $10 off], threw a party for me to check out in Chicago.) We were able to attend another one of these shindigs in San Jose and had a BLAST playing Cards Against Humanity with some of the DreamHost team. We expected nothing less here in the Windy City. We weren’t wrong.

As this was a networking event, we found ourselves chatting it up with new friends and old (hello DreamHost friends! I heart you guys!). While we were talking with someone from DreamHost HR, he introduced his title as something amusing (of course, my beer-muddled brain forgot to write that down). So I told him that I was a word magician.

So, out there in the real world, I’m an SEO copywriter (not copyrighter). I write copy (that’s content for advertising) for a pretty large retail company and then do some word magic to get the content to the top of your Google search. SEO is a fickle bird, and it’s certainly not one I try to do anything with for this blog. And so I told my new friend this.

I started explaining that SEO is great for somethings, but I mean, I can’t just try to optimize everything. And that’s a lot of what I see bloggers doing. Some posts (like this one) just aren’t designed to be optimized. I could try to optimize this post for “reasons your blog doesn’t need SEO” and maybe I will. But probably not. Because someone who is looking for that type of content isn’t looking for my random ramblings. They want facts and statistics. Which I’m not going to give you.

So then I explained to this lovely fellow that there were some opportunities for me to bank on my SEO knowledge…

“Say you want to search for ‘ways to fuck with your boyfriend while he’s sleeping.’ Now that’s something I could probably optimize for. Because it’s humorous and random, and anyone searching for that is looking for a girl like me.”

Of course, at this point, the guy is belly-laughing and Brian looks out through his glazed-over eyes (introvert tricks) and notices that there’s a conversation happening and he may be the subject of it. But it went all the way over his head. And I let it. Because coming soon is a post entitled, “Ways to Fuck With Your Boyfriend While He’s Sleeping.”

Because you need that in your life. Amiright?

Blog Friends, if you could re-title your professional career (whether you’re a full-time corporate monkey, a part-timer, wfh, sahm, whatever), what would you title yourself? Do you believe in SEO for your blog?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Sometimes We Just Need a Reminder

Good morning, Blog Friends!

Brian and I are on our way to Gen Con right now. You may find me Twitterstalking Wil Wheaton or racing around Indianapolis playing ALL THE GAMES.

All Gen Con gaming joy nerd stalking aside, I’m sharing my view from here (which I guess isn’t here, like, Chicago-here, because right now it’s somewhere-between-Indianapolis-and-Chicago here, but the general premise is that it’s my view of my life which is in the Chicago suburbs and stuff) over at Dancing in the Rain today. So if you’re interested in reading about how Brian and I work through the tough stuff and the reminder that helps us daily, please go and check out my guest post A Life Full of Awesome.

I’m closing comments on this post so that you follow the internet rabbit hole and comment on my post at Jennifer’s blog home so that she thinks I’m cool. I’m really excited for you to read this one, so go check it out.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

BlogHer Conference: Not Just for Mommy Bloggers

I recently discovered that BlogHer in the media is labeled as the biggest mom-blogger conference in the country.

This is news to me. As a second-year attendee, with no children to speak of, it really bothers me.

BlogHer is an all-encompassing conference for people who blog. Men. Women. Parents. Writers. Humorists. Storytellers. Young. Old. Gay. Straight. We are unified by our desire to write and to share our stories.

Sure the HER part of BlogHer makes it a conference comprised of mostly women, but men are welcome and WELCOMED.

So here’s my wrap-up. The good, the bad and the ugly. But I gained so much more immediately following this conference than what I thought I got out of BlogHer13.

I didn’t go for the speakers or the sessions…though Jenny Lawson was fabulous, some of the things Kerry Washington  had to say resonated with me, and I learned some valuable information about publication.

I didn’t go for the swag…though I was happy to add to my board game collection thanks to Chuck E Cheese, Skype blew it out of the park with branded stuff my co-workers may be a bit jealous of, and I’m pretty excited (Read: OMG had a freakout in the hallway with another ginger blogger) about trying out the new Keurig when it comes out.

I went for the people.

The writers, the women, the friends that I’ve made in the blogosphere and the people I met on our Californiadventure. I was lucky to have met a fantastic group of women from around the world before I even made it to BlogHer, so I went into the conference with a beautiful group of new friends. I got to hang out with Joules again and Jenny (my bestie’s adorable and wonderful SIL) and so many others that I met last year (I loved that so many of us kept bumping into each other)!

I met the AMAZING Lillian Connelly finally. She was my first fan that wasn’t obligated by friendship or blood to like me. And she was my first blog friend to really welcome me into this digital community. I also met a large group of women that I spend a lot time reading and interacting with on the Book of Face. We had dinner/snacks/drinks before the closing party and they were all ABSOLUTELY wonderful. And hysterical.

Selfie with Lily

Selfie with Lily

The brands, connections and companies that help me keep this blog running. Networking with businesses that fit with my brand of crazy and meeting writers and social media mavens who offer advice, experience and contacts was an unexpected highlight of my first conference and definitely something I found yet again. You never know who you’re going to sit next to at breakfast or run into at a party.

It was awesome to hang out with my hosting company, DreamHost. Because they. Are. Awesome.

It was awesome to hang out with my hosting company, DreamHost. Because they. Are. Awesome. (Shameless plug: if you use my affiliate code, QuirkyHost, you can save $10 on a one- or two-year contract.)

On tribes, cliques and cool kids

I am lucky enough to have several groups of blog friends. I am a part of groups and tribes. But I don’t think that any one group was the be all end all of this conference. I think they were all unbelievable and better in real life than ever I imagined. I bounced around as I tend to do, flitting from event to group hangout to solo time to a little one-on-one with my honey. And still I missed whole groups of people that I wanted to spend time with.

The best part, though, is that every group I sat down in, every person I talked to, every cool kid table I moseyed my way into was cool. I learned from veterans and educated newbies. Some saw me as a relative newbie while others looked to me for advice and acceptance. But as Aussa Lorens mentioned, there’s always that .8% of people who aren’t quite as awesome. My .8% happened to be a single person who reminded me of my grandmother-though not in a bad way at all-(her personality, the way she spoke, her love of sparkly things), assumed I was a plus-size fashion blogger before even making eye-contact with me or shaking my hand, and didn’t want to exchange business cards with anyone who wasn’t a fashion blogger. But she may have been nervous. Or annoyed at the session we were in. Or having a bad day. So I don’t fault her.

Every group seemed like the “cool kids”  and almost every time they welcomed me with open arms. It was lovely.

On the expo hall, sessions, food, and parties

While the expo hall was smaller this year than last, I felt as though I didn’t have enough time to navigate to all the places I wanted to. Sure, there wasn’t as much swag free-flowing, but I feel like I made better connections with brands that I really want to work with.

The sessions were MUCH longer than last year, and thus less to my liking. I would rather have more options, and less lengthy panels with a lot of information that isn’t relevant to me. The publishing session offered a lot of information, but I think it could have been broken down into separate sessions about the different ways to publish. I made it to the style session, but it didn’t really seem to be what I thought it was, so I bounced.

The conference food was okay. I didn’t starve this time. I’m REALLY glad I’m not gluten-free this year (though I have found I feel a little better when I avoid bread and potatoes) because everything was all the bread.

Yoga and wine. At the same time.

Yoga and wine. At the same time.

The parties that I did attend were great. Eppa and One2One threw a killer yoga and sangria party. Keurig fed me the most delicious breakfast complete with Kcup coffee from the new Keurig 2.0. I also attended a beautiful and powerful panel discussing late-stage breast cancer. I tried to get into the suite parties, but they were SO crowded that I just. couldn’t. do it. Plus Brian was with me (and actually up for partying) so I couldn’t not find a less-crowded spot to hang. We met up with the lovely Joules from Pocketful of Joules and a few other ladies for karaoke and Twisted Shotz. All. The. Shotz.

Don’t worry. I’ll share the karaoke video at some point.

I was a little disappointed in the lack of a swag drop/exchange on Saturday night/Sunday when I was packing up my swag and found a few items that weren’t super relevant to me. I had no place to drop them off to be donated or snagged by someone who WOULD use them. Bummer.

On candy in a pill bottle

One of the brands at BlogHer was giving out swag with Red Hots inside of a prescription bottle with a label designed to make adults laugh. I was unlucky enough to miss this before they shut down the “drug ring.” Because this brand was a company that produces baby products, the media blew up with the mom-blogger conference sponsor that did a bad thing.

While I don’t have children (thus likely discounting my opinion, apparently), I don’t think the company made a huge mistake. First, no one complained last year when a pharmacy gave out all the drugs. Actual drugs. Because those were for grown ups. I’m pretty sure the Red Hots were for grown ups too. The swag here isn’t all for toddlers to play with.

Second, when I was about 8 or 9, I used to play with candies (usually Pez) as “pills” in used prescription bottles, while smoking my gum and powdered sugar cigarettes and swiping Mom’s expired credit cards to purchase used lotto tickets while playing bartender. Granted, I was old enough to know the difference between play and real. Maybe you think poorly of me. Or my parents. But I turned out to be a successful, smart, independent woman who never ODed on pills, picked up a smoking habit or gambled my way into Gamblers’ Anonymous.

In the same token, I don’t think poorly of the parents who disliked the swag. That’s their prerogative.

But in the end, I was a little sad I didn’t get a bottle of laughter medicine.

Thankfully, I surrounded myself with BlogHers who made me laugh.

Did you go to BlogHer? Have you been to BlogHer? Would you go to BlogHer next year? Have you been to a conference similar to this? What experiences did/would you hope to have at a conference of this magnitude?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!