Thirst Trap

I need to take one of those coding boot camp classes so I can learn to make my own phone app:

my app is a glorified alarm clock that reminds you to get a drink of water every so often.

While you’ve got the app running,  every so often it will chime with a reminder of “have you had a drink of water lately?”  and you can respond with yes or no.  If you respond Yes, it gives you a picture of a hot actor and a cute caption like “you go girl!” or “looking good!”.

the name of the app will be “Thirst Trap”.

I love my “mermaid hair”. Yes, i’m flinching when you call it that.

this is a post about hidden baggage.   and how you never know what baggage someone is carrying around.  They might tell you, they might not, they might not even know it’s there.   What can you do about this?  what you can do, is not freak out if someone reacts in a surprising way to something you say to them.

I love my long curly red hair, and yes, it’s natural.  There was a “mermaid stuff” trend around the time I was starting to grow my hair long, and my secret vain dream was to have someone say “You’ve got mermaid hair!”.  “Mermaid hair” became my secret, never spoken, name for myself.

When I was around 20 years old, i got a part time job at a furniture store. This was my first “grown up job”, where I was expected to have a professional appearance every day, be on time, know what the hell I was doing.  I was the only kid who worked on the sales floor. I was TERRIBLE at this job, my friends, TERRIBLE.  But, it was a great experience, everyone who worked there was very kind to me, and even better, everyone there treated me like an adult. I loved being there, because i felt like a real grown up when I was there.   I only worked there for about a year.

There was a guy I didn’t usually get shifts with, i don’t even remember his first name. He was kinda cute in a distant sort of way, rather quiet, didn’t have the ego that salespeople usually have, and was just a very kind person. I think he was younger than I thought he was, so maybe he was 25? I don’t even remember his name, which makes me a horrible person.

About a week after we met, he gave me a funny look and said “that’s what your hair looks like! You have mermaid hair!!” .

This guy had guessed my secret name for myself.  Once he said it, other people at the store said it too, and weather they knew it or not, this was a huge ego boost for me.  I have always had a soft spot in my heard, for my co-worker whose name I can’t remember, who first said “mermaid hair” out loud to me.

about 6 months after we met, he committed suicide.

1. this was the first person i’d known who had ever committed suicide

2. this was the funeral I’d ever been to as an adult

i feel like the worst human being ever, because i don’t remember his name. What I do remember is wanting to bury the phrase “mermaid hair” so deep inside that it would leak out the heels of my feet.  That phrase would be forever linked to someone who saw something beautiful in me, who gave me an ego boost, but who couldn’t go on living for reasons unknown to me.  I felt guilty everytime I looked in the mirror and admired my own mermaid hair.

I’ll be 40 this summer, so it’s been nearly 20 years since that year at the furniture store.

On occasion, a well meaning person will give me the compliment of “you’ve got mermaid hair!”.  I want to smile, because way deep down that is still my secret nickname for myself.  But outwardly, I can’t help but flinch.

there’s some baggage that we should let go of. I’m not ready to let go of this one.

“Never refuse my son anything”

I have removed the first paragraph of the original post, to make identifying this person harder.

an acquaintance and her husband share “pick the kid up from day care” duties, and this is a “let me tell you something silly that my husband did!” story she recently shared with me.

On certain days, their son attends daycare from 7:30am until noon, and her husband picks up the child on those days.   Apparently the rule at daycare is “we start picking up toys at 10am, and as soon as you are done picking up toys you can eat lunch”, and the kids have from 10am-noon to complete toy pick up and eat lunch.  sounds like plenty of time right?  I’m also assuming they are picking up a normal amount of toys, not like hundreds of toys.

Their son decided that instead of picking up toys, he would be his stubborn self, and sit there pouting until 11:58. He didn’t pick up toys, so the daycare provider didn’t give him lunch.  Dad picks the boy up at noon, and the boy says “They didn’t give me lunch”.

Dad then screams at the day care provider “You will never, ever, ever refuse to feed my child again!”.   His wife,agreed with the daycare provider’s policy, knew her child  had a stubborn streak, knew her child wouldn’t starve to death if he had to wait another hour to eat, and thought it was hilarious that days afterward, her husband was still angry about it.

I’m a little angry too, but for different reasons.  No, angry isn’t the right word.

help me figure out what word I’m looking for:

By screaming at a woman who refused to serve his son (regardless of the fact that the child knowingly didn’t do what was asked of him), the father was telling his son that women should always say yes to him.  He was giving a young boy the impression that if a woman says “no” to you, she is in the wrong.

What’s the word that is a combination of disgust, disappointment, face-palm, and exhausted resignation?  that is how I feel.



You probably don’t need this.

fair warning: I am not a fan of conspicuous consumption.   People think I’m cheap because I don’t buy tons of stuff.   I’m not overly cheap or frugal, I just get offended when companies tell me I have to have  their product, and if i don’t buy their product, I’m missing out.  Yes, yes, I understand their job is literally to make money. . .   but still, i don’t actually need whatever it is they are selling?  And If they don’t trust me to make that determination for myself, are they insulting my intelligence?  I’m not talking about things like groceries and medication. I’m talking about luxury crap.

You didn’t need air pods until Apple told you that you needed them

You didn’t need to go on a 7 day cruise until Carribean Cruises told you that you needed to go on one

You didn’t need an over the top wedding until the wedding industry told you that you needed one

You didn’t need a McMansion until that realtor told you that you needed one

you didn’t need to buy whatever it is you just splurged on until instagram or a marketing company (wait, aren’t they the same thing?) told you that your life was incomplete without whatever that thing is.

if no one tells you that you need something (or when they do, you just don’t listen), what luxuries will you continue to spend your money on?



fear of missing out?  hyper-consumerism?  peak marketing?  i guess?


What did you have for lunch today?

For not having much in the way of leftovers in the fridge, I think I did pretty well for lunch!

plain fage yogurt with low-sodium train mix stirred in

2 oz pepperoni

a handful of cherry tomatoes (ok, more like 2 handfuls!)

one small sweet bell pepper, sliced


i had a granola bar, but ended up not needing it. Lots of protein in the yogurt and the pepperoni, and the hummus was filling too.  but i was pretty hungry by the time I got home from work around 6.

what did you have for lunch today?

clean ONE thing a day

i find cleaning to be VERY intimidating.  everything about it seems demotivating.   i just seems like a never ending to-do list.  so many items on the to-do list, just to clean the bathroom!!!

but like, i like having a clean kitchen?  and a small amount of cleaning / tidying up / decluttering makes me feel better?  I just don’t know what amount that “small amount” is.

But i have figured something out: I can clean / declutter ONE  thing. ONE thing is totally do-able!  and takes like, 1 minute!

here are the things I hate about cleaning:

  • takes forever (or at least feels like it does!)
  • lots of little steps makes it feel intimidating
  • situations that have even the vague possibly of feeling judgemental “you missed a spot”, “that’s not how I would have done it”, make me feel super de-motivated.

ok, so how do I adapt these things to make them enough less awful that I’m going to do some cleaning?  Here’s what I tried:


  • takes forever (or at least feels like it does!) – every morning before work, clean ONE thing. limit yourself to ONE.  just the bathroom counter. just the bathroom mirror. just dust one bookshelf in the living room. just wipe down the counter in the kitchen next to the sink. ONLY ONE!!
  • lots of little steps makes it feel intimidating – every morning before work, spend no more than 3 minutes cleaning something.  if it takes less than 3 minutes, that’s great, but STOP at 3 minutes.
  • situations that have even the possibly of feeling judgemental “you missed a spot”, “that’s not how I would have done it”, make me feel super de-motivated – i’m doing this when no one else is awake, and no one in the house even knows I’m doing it. it’s  like my little secret.  somehow doing something good, without anyone knowing, is a motivator?


seems to be working pretty well so far.  One morning I dusted the bookshelf in the living room, and while walking to the closet to  put the swiffer away, i was walking right past the other bookshelf, so I dusted that too! time spent: less than 3 minutes.

We keep our boxes of tea and hot chocolate on top of the microwave. that area always gets missed when we clean the kitchen. so  one morning I audited the tea and cleaned the top of the microwave.  Time spent – about 2 minutes.

one morning I cleaned the bathroom counter. Didn’t let myself feel guilty about not sweeping the floor. time spent, less than 1 minute.


bonus: i feel accomplished before I even leave for work!


does the house still need more heavy duty cleaning? Yep. still gotta vacuum, still gotta clean stuff. that’s never going to go away. but somehow I feel like i’ve already crossed off half the items on the list.


let’s see how long I can keep this up!