We Aren't Raising Kids, We're Raising Adults
I think the dreaded Dr. Phil says that all the time. I know he's an officious windbag, but he's right. Our goal as parents is to somehow avoid scarring our offspring emotionally while teaching them how to become positive members of society one day.

That's why I read two things today that upset me as a parent. One just made me shake my head, one made the pit of my stomach hurt.

The one that just mildly upset me came from one of Downers Grove's three blogs. (Hint: I commented, and my name ain't Chad.) I would like to publicly sympathize with any teacher who has ever taught the children of parents like that, whose children can't receive the mildest of reprimands or consequences. I would like to extend my sympathy out into the future, to anyone who has to deal with these people as adults. And, I would like to express my future sympathy to the children themselves, who may find themselves shocked and traumatized to find out that they DO TOO have to pay that speeding ticket/parking ticket/late fee.

Now, onto to more serious and egregious subject, brought to me by Fran via Facebook. In another tragic bullying story that ended in the victim's suicide, we find another group of kids walking around without any consequences attached to their actions. Are sociopaths born, or made? Isn't there some sort of baseline for decent human behavior that parents should have been enforcing since the age of two? What amazes me is to what degree these cruel, antisocial dictators are allowed to get their way, or at the very least remain unscathed. Is this what passes for a "winner?"

(A lot of attention has been paid to the "mean girls" phenomenon, and "queen bees" and such, but we all know this isn't limited to girls, so don't think if you have boys you're off the hook. Of course, if you have boys, you know this already. I'm not being patronizing, sorry.)

The older kids/people get, the more difficult it is to get them to change. I know the native Americans used to put people on islands or isolate them away from camp when they proved themselves incapable of acting in the best interest of the tribe instead of themselves. I guess that's what prisons are supposed to be for nowadays, but I think they're locking up the wrong people a lot of the time. They put people who grew up amidst poverty and violence away -- people who are acting in response to their environment. Much more frightening and threatening to me are people who grow up in comfort and opportunity and still choose a wanton disregard for other people.

Maybe they all just need a unicorn collection to set them on the right path:

You should totally do this one thing.
My (quasi) friend Nick, whom I used to torture until I found Randal, blogs approximately twice a year. Which is good, because that's probably how often he has an idea.

One of the times he deigns to descend into the fetid pit of blogging is Superbowl season. He always has squares available, and all you have to do is offer some random piece of crap you have lying around the house or useless skill you might pretend to have.

Please prayerfully consider participating in his Superbowl Squares. He has very little else in his life, as evidenced by the fact he comes over to my house to hug stuffed animals for fun and excitement:

It might be interesting to note (and frightening, for Randal) that Nick and I started as blog buddies. He lived far away in Wichita. Then I collected him, and now he lives RIGHT DOWN THE STREET FROM ME.

We have libraries here in Downers Grove. We even have a university. It's small, but I'm sure they could use a librarian...
Welcome to the Most Depressing Day of the Year!

Yes, cats and kitties, that despair you feel in the pit of your stomach is currently residing in the pits of your friends and neighbors, too. Hooray for human misery!

Speaking of which, I can't get a certain historical period out of my head. I first read about it last week via BlueGal via some other people, but I can't find that particular article referenced by them. Basically it was about this, a period of time from the 1800's to the early 20th century, when women could be committed to an asylum just for being depressed or angry.

Every female relative I know would have been institutionalized.

I believe that this could possibly be one of the worst times in history to be a woman. You can point to the middle ages and stuff, but even then you had some pockets of niceness (or at least a stab at being fair) in places like the Visigothic Code. But the 1800's? You had Chinese foot-binding and African slavery and colonization of your homeland in some places, and this asylum business and lack of property and other human rights in others. I'm talking world-wide yuckiness here. That's why when people focus like a laser on the Magdalene Laundries, I'm a bit perplexed. I mean, yeah, that sucked. Things like that existed all over the place, though. Including the good ol' U.S. of A. Although this book says they weren't all punitive and mean; some were shelters in the true sense of the word.) But anyways...

I'm finding it hard to feel depressed today, not living in a cage in an insane asylum and all. Even if I'm supposed to.
My Flash Fiction Friday Fairy Tale

My Flash Fiction contribution for today. Starter sentence in blue, as always.

"As the sixth shot of whisky burnt its way down, I suddenly remembered what I left the house for."
I picked up the gas can, sprinkled around the local branch of my bank, tossed the gas can through the window, lit every match I had and and flung them here and there along the trail of gas, hoping for the best. Or the worst, depending on your point of view. I heard the alarm going off behind me, but I didn't care anymore. Let them throw me in jail; at least I'd have a roof over my head and something to eat. I had nothing left to lose.


Sandy Partridge was working the night shift at the 9-1-1 response center. When she saw the alarm call come in, and where it came from, she disregarded it and turned it off with glee. No people would be hurt, and the branch was a stand-alone building so no neighboring businesses would be affected by the bank's destruction, so her conscience was clear. Fuck them and their late fees.


The firefighters and paramedics at Station 5 smelled smoke. Was it someone's fireplace, they wondered? It couldn't be someone's outdoor fire pit; this was the middle of winter. Why was there no alarm sounding? They told the newbie to look outside. He saw the glow, he heard the alarm, and they hopped into their engine to take a look. Upon seeing the bank in flames, they stood by to make sure no spark traveled to cause problems for anyone else, and waited while the building turned to rubble. They felt no reason to save it.


When employees showed up to open the bank the next morning and found it destroyed, they just turned around and went home, grateful to escape another day of screaming customers. They were relieved not to be justifying their employer's outrageous abuses toward its customers for one more day. The bank didn't pay them a living wage, anyway.

Nobody showed up to arrest the arsonist. The police were done protecting the predators who destroyed their friends and neighbors for their own enrichment. As news of the bank's demise spread, and the apathy with which it was met, copycat arsonists took down banks everywhere.

People turned to bartering as a means of exchange. Everyone was happy except the lazy rich people, who had no known skill and thus had to rely on the charity of others. Although, the guys who made silk top hats and monocles weren't too happy at first, but they learned to make other stuff and survived just fine.

********The End************
Clearing my name. Not my reputation, but my name.
I would like to state what should be obvious to most people, yet still seems to be causing some confusion: I am NOT the woman in this news story.

For one, unlike some people, I am not 43. I am ... less than that.

Two, I would never drive drunk. That is much too ambitious for me.

Three, I don't drink until late ate night. At least dinnertime. Most days. Unless it's summertime. Or some sort of holiday. What time is it now?

Four, I do not live in Florida.

So, the only thing I have in common is wearing my pajamas all day long and getting drunk. Hardly enough to cause confusion, one would think. And as long as I don't live in China, no one is going to arrest me for wearing my pajamas all day. So GET OFF MY BACK already.

I have to go grocery shopping. We're out of milk. Lousy kids. Can't I just water down the half and half I put in my coffee?
You know who pisses me off? Europe.
They went around subjugating and pillaging and colonizing for a few hundred years, left behind entire continents and portions of continents in abject poverty, and now sit around smugly calling themselves "enlightened" because they have gay marriage and legal prostitution and can smoke marijuana in coffee shops.

You know what? Screw you, Europe, you condescending windbag.
Flash Fiction Friday: No Title and Very Little Story
Flash Fiction Friday, starter sentence in blue. My apologies to all other participants (except Randal) for its total shittiness. You all deserve better. Except Randal. I just haven't been feeling my muse lately.

"I am not supposed to remember any of this."
At least, that's what the soap operas tell me, and they don't lie, right?

Okay, all I have to do is smash my head somehow, and I will forget all the events of the past 72 hours. I will pass out, and when I wake up, I will assume a new identity.

In just a little while, those pictures won't matter a bit. Even if they DO show up on the internet.

First, I ditch my purse in a dumpster. I take the cash.

Second, I start driving. I dump the rental car.

I hail cab. I tell the driver to take me as far as $60 will allow.

I get out.

I walk into alley. I start hitting self with bricks, bottles, various bits of debris.

I fail to accomplish anything other than pain, blood and dirt on my face.

I sit on the ground and sob.

I don't know who's fault this is, but I'm sure it's not mine.
Thursdays with Ubie: an Interview with Max the Drunken Severed Head

Please welcome special guest Max the Drunken Severed Head as I get up close and personal with some questions:

Q0: Do you still get hangovers?

Well, sometimes my wife hangs me over a clothesline. By my ears. You don't wanna know why. Otherwise, no.

Q1: What is that thing you're sitting in? A cookie sheet? A bedpan?

It's a dissection pan that no one was using at the time. Has a nice alcoholic smell. (I'd like to tell you it's a cupcake pan, since I love your blog and your profile pic, but I cannot tell a lie.)

At night, I have my own bed--got it from Petco.

Q2: Who changes your fluids?

Anyone nearby will do when I'm a quart low. "Hey, can you switch out that bottle of Dewar's to some Gray Goose?"

Q3: Where's the rest of your body, and how did you become separated from it?

This is something I don't remember and I've heard different accounts. My ex used to "tear me a new one" a lot, so I suspect her.

Maybe it's a family thing. A genealogist in a turban once told me the Headless Horseman was a great-uncle on my mother's side. But he also said my Moon was in Pisces and that I'd marry a squat Lithuanian, so who knows?

You'd think I'd really want to know, but I don't feel that way. Just detached.

Q4: What is your favorite liquid to float in?

I love floating in my tequila pool. If I start to sink, I just dissolve more salt from around the rim.

Q5: Since you can't change the channel, what would be the most torturous thing to force you to watch on TV? What would you find most enjoyable?

Most tortuous? Watching Susan Boyle with the sound turned off, or Jerry Lewis on his telethon with the sound turned on. (Or off, for that matter.)

Most enjoyable? I'm waiting for AMC's HEAD marathon: Head, The Man Without a Body, The Brain that Wouldn't Die, The Head, They Saved Hitler's Brain, and The View From Pompey's Head. Cameron Mitchell had a great cranium.

Q6: Do you miss having a body?

Oh, I'm resolved to my fate. Sure, when a woman cuddles up to me, it'd be nice to have something hard other than my skull! But I'm past the point where I cry myself to sleep singing "I Ain't Got Nobody."

Q 7: My dad used to say, "Want to lose 10 ugly pounds? Cut off your head!" How much does your head actually weigh?

A gentlemen never talks about the amount of head he has.

But do you like it?

Q 8: How do you sleep? Do you just close your eyes? Do you fall over on your cheek? If you fall over, how do you get upright? The same person who changes your fluids?

Sometimes someone will throw a pillowcase over me and I'll nap. But I don't sleep much. My doctor--Dr. Vinnie Boombotz--wanted me to start sleepwalking, for the exercise. It was an idea I tried to roll with, but it didn't get far.

I pass out from lack of air for short periods, sometimes, when my dog curls up around my face. Don't mind it, as long he's turned the right way. That's about it. You can't drink unless your conscious!

Once, I passed out into my soup. Oh lord. My ears stopped up, and I spent the next day feeling like my head was coming in for a landing. And I thought I was deaf, too. But it was just pinto beans in my ear canals! My wife said the oregano made me smell better, but what does she know? I could smell fine.

Hey, with no hands or fingers, my other senses are all much, much keener. I can even see in the dark, when the lights are on.

Since then, I always wear a Med-Alert around my neck which sends a message in an emergency: "Help! I've tipped over and I can't get up!" But I think being on the level is overrated. The world is far more interesting at 45 or 90 degrees. Anything over 90 degrees and I start to sweat.

Thanks for taking an interest. Come over sometime for a cocktail!
Why the Leno vs. O'Brien Thing Matters

If you don't know what I'm talking about, this isn't about a court case (yet). Please use your search engine in the off chance you don't watch TV/Twitter/Facebook/talk to other human beings.)

Oh, I'm not talking about the wounded pride or career aspirations of one millionaire performer or another. Conan O'Brien himself told all of us earthlings not to feel sorry for him. Instead, this story resonates for me because it is another example of the corporate-favored screw-up getting preferential treatment while the competent employee gets the shaft.

From the very start, NBC promoted the hell out of Leno's new prime time show. O'Brien's "Tonight Show" takeover? Not so much. Despite all the marketing behind it, Leno's show sucked so badly that affiliates squawked about the damage to their 11 p.m. (10 p.m. central) newscasts. In fact, they led what has been called "a revolt." Do you remember affiliates reacting to a low-rated show in such a way before? Do you remember a show having such a disastrous, dramatic effect on the newscast before? I don't.

O'Brien's "Tonight Show" suffered a bit in the ratings, too. Let's use common sense and logic here -- Leno caused people to stop watching NBC affiliate news, so that also dipped O'Brien's ratings as the show that FOLLOWED the news. But who gets punished? Conan O'Brien. Who gets rewarded? Jay Leno, the man who ruined the network.

To me, that's what this story is about. This is why America continues a downward slide unless we do something. Jay Leno getting a new show during the "Tonight Show"'s opening time slot for collapsing NBC = our financial institution leaders getting huge bonuses for collapsing our economy.

Good job, one and all! Keep heaping rewards on your dangerously incompetent "Golden Boy" buddies as the rest of us poor schmucks keep doing our jobs and getting shit upon!

Lucky for Conan he can tell the NBC jerks to stick their peacock up their asses without exposing his family to poverty. But I'm glad he could take a very public stand against what so many of us face in private.
Not Feeling Too Optimistic

I'm not feeling like anything good lies in the future. And here's the thing: a line a mile long could form of people shouting, "Quit your whining! You think you have problems? Listen what happened to me!"

But that's the thing. I'm not depressed for myself. I'm depressed for us all. I'm not saying "poor me," I'm saying "poor us."

I used to be able to snap myself out of it by saying, "things might not be the greatest right now, but they'll get better." I don't think so anymore. I really don't bother looking forward to anything anymore.

Maybe I should bake a batch of oatmeal scotchies.
Local Irritant Heads North to Annoy Wisconsin; Please Accept Our Apologies
A while back, my park district board aroused my wrath. Once aroused, they flamed it higher. Their decisions continue to haunt me.

Luckily, my fellow residents agreed, and voted out incumbents, including one guy who went on to Wisconsin to enrage people there.

I am hereby apologizing to Wisconsin on behalf of all Downers Grove residents. It was not our intention to inflict that guy on anybody else when we kicked him out; we just wanted him to stop bothering us. I am sorry he and his equally obnoxious family members are wreaking havoc up there. Please do not send your sausage-laden Wisconsin warriors down here to extract revenge; we meant you no harm.

Oh, and by the way: God didn't grant you "property rights." If He was in the business of granting property rights, you might check the Oneida tribe to have them sign over the title to you, because they were "granted" it first. And claiming "anti-Christian" bias? Wisconsin is overwhelmingly Christian.
Off the Wall Wednesday
I will try to display my weirdness every Wednesday. I will blurt out things I'd be too embarrassed to bring up at Bunco. If I was ever invited, which I am not, because, as some of you might remember, I am the Licorice Cow. But if the normals ever DID invite me somewhere, I would know better than to bring up some topics.

Like horror movies. And how hilarious I think this is. And how no Saturday night is complete without watching Son of Svengoolie. And how I actually think about what movies I haven't seen on Svengoolie, but which I wish I did.

In that vein, I would like to address Mr. Son of Svengoolie directly, here, if I might.

Dear Son of Svengoolie:

Please find and broadcast the movie Killdozer. Produced in 1974, the golden age of made-for-TV movies, this masterpiece has developed a cult following, inspired musicians, and influenced tragic real-life events. You would be remiss -- nay, NEGLIGENT -- were you to ignore a cultural powerhouse of this magnitude.

I submit for your consideration:

As you can see, you must rectify this situation immediately.

A Crazy Old(er) Lady from the Western Suburbs.
Flash Fiction Friday: Sweet, Sweet Revenge
Flash Fiction Friday, starter sentence in blue:

"She saw the orange Necco wafer on the counter top and started to cry." After weeks and months of being told she was imagining things, that she was crazy, she thought she might feel vindicated to find proof her suspicions were correct. Instead, she felt a crushing grief that momentarily paralyzed her.

Until it was replaced by insane rage. She hadn't planned anything beyond following her husband; she wasn't sure where it would all lead. Now that she knew exactly what the situation was, she knew exactly what she would do.

After a quick stop at the refrigerator, she gathered her resolve and pushed forward, letting her fury guide her steps.

She followed a trail of sweets down the hallway, finding a gumdrop here and a bit of licorice there. When she heard giggling and cooing and a familiar murmur, her insides turned to ice. She hesitated outside the door a moment, just to be sure...

Then she burst in and unloaded the carton of milk on the two of them, squeezing it with all her might, aiming the straw at her husband's legs.

"You're not running, anymore, motherfucker!" she shrieked. "I CAN catch you, Gingerbread Man!"

"Baby, don't do this," he pleaded, the frosting smeared all over his face adding to his wife's wrath. "I can explain..."

Next to him, the Barbie cupcake screamed incoherently. "Shut up, you high-fructose corn syrup whore!" She roared as she unloaded tablespoon after tablespoon of milk onto her rival's denuded, unprotected cake. It dissolved, sending the now lifeless plastic upper torso pick clattering to the floor below.

"No, no..." moaned the Gingerbread Man.

"Yes, yes!" gleefully shouted the Gingerbread Lady, as she emptied her milk carton onto the cheating bastard's face. As he melted into oblivion, she smiled triumphantly. They couldn't convict her without a corpse.
Perhaps a Better, or Maybe Just Another, Example

"Well, the world is full of people walking around with a notepad and a pencil looking to be offended at something," quoth Doc.

I will tweak Doc's comment a bit: the world is full of people walking around with a head full of nasty opinions and vitriol they just CAN'T WAIT to express.

I can hear Dilf's voice in my head admonishing me for even reading the comment section. And he's right -- but I can't help it. But in another example of people flinging acrimonious, hateful words at each other for absolutely no reason, I present...

A completely inane and typical and boring story on weight loss ideas.

I wouldn't have even noticed that story if Blue Gal hadn't gotten all excited about the knitting suggestion and pointed it out to me. And I know, I know... if I don't like the comments, don't read them. But...

It bothers me that that many people have that degree of nastiness in their heads about their fellow human beings. Just because it's not news doesn't mean it isn't disturbing to me.

And they just HAVE to express it. Because they're SO SURE they're SO RIGHT that it's worth humiliating and diminishing someone else.
Name: Übermilf
Location: Chicago Area

If being easily irritated, impatient and rebellious is sexy, then call me MILF -- Übermilf.

So you want more huh?
Click here!

Perverts, scram. There's nothing for you here.

Now, who wants cupcakes?

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