Please Stop Asking…

From what I’ve heard (mostly on the Free Beer and Hot Wings morning show), when you are newly married, the most common question is some variation of: “So, when are you going to start pumping out babies?!” I’m sure it wasn’t worded that way, but why get bogged down by something like manners or subtlety? Yes, I’ve seen women ranting and raving about being on the receiving end of this question. Yes, it also annoys me when I’m asked because, as I keep telling people, I already have kids.

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It didn’t end well.

 

 

For me, there is a different, far more exasperating question…

 

Are You Pregnant?

I know, I know, it’s in the same family as the newly-wed question. So, what’s the big difference? People have asked me this question since I was in my late teens. And for any reason. Any at all. Here’s an example:

I like to eat _______.
a. Pickles
b. Ice cream
c. Steak
d. Eggs
e. Broccoli
f. The heart of my enemies
g. Literally anything that is edible

By the way, you can fill that blank in with any of those answer choices. Except “f.” I’m not sure how that got in there. The point is: After a certain age, pregnancy is obviously the only way to explain desire for a type of food. Likewise, if I ever say that my head hurts, my back hurts, I’m nauseous, I’m having an allergy attack, I broke my ankle, the question here is also whether or not I’m pregnant.

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The answer is no!

 

 

Although I’ve gotten to the autopilot point of saying, “No, I’m not pregnant” and “A brain aneurism is not usually a symptom (gift?) of being pregnant,” I should really just…

 

Say Yes

Not because of all the fun jokes I could play on people, but because it would give me an excuse to overeat and act hormonal. Or is a female the slave to her hormones. I forget. Anyway, saying “yes” might curb the amount I’m asked that question. I mean, people know that you can’t get a pregnant woman more pregnant, right? Saying “yes” would also excuse me from having to follow up “I want ice cream” with “because it’s sweet and creamy and moist.” Seriously, who needs to give a reason to want to eat ice cream?

I’d like to say that men ask the pregnancy question more often, not because men aren’t hip to female strife, but because their lady-plumbing fell out and turned into a spitting, in-heat-seeking missile with stabilizer balls.

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It just keeps following me wherever I go.

 

 

That may or may not have been the best anatomical description of how the human body works. I never claimed to be an anatomist. What I’m trying to say is that I expect opposing genders to be ignorant about one another in some aspects. And yet, more women than men ask. Granted, it is almost an even keel. I just find it a bit inconceivable when I’m hanging out with a friend, talking about [insert food here] and out of nowhere, “Are you pregnant?” Wtf do you mean am I pregnant? You just said you liked that food, too!

What I want to know is…

 

Why Are You Asking?

Is this a trick question? Are you asking because you hope I am, you sadistic bastard? Or maybe you hope I’m not. Surely pregnancy is not the only answer to all my ailments and appetites. Right? Right? I’m going to go out on a limb and assume that at least half the time this question is asked to me, it’s in jest.

“Are you pregnant” is the 21st century equivalent of the “hysteria” diagnosis. Prevalent and of zero help.

Harrison Ford is Making Global News

From John Travolta to Gisele Bundchen, celebrities love to take to the sky, whether via plane or helicopter. There must be something freeing about being able to transport yourself above the land-bound hardships of the rich and famous. I know that’s my favorite thing to do when I can’t choose between the Bugatti Chiron and the Pagani Huayra BC.

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What do you mean neither one of these is a Bugatti?!

 

 

And then there’s Harrison Ford. Go ahead and riddle off all the Star Wars zingers you can. I’ll wait. Done? Ok. So, this past Monday marks the fourth “incident” in Ford’s piloting career. The first was back in 1999, when his helicopter flipped due to a delay in adding power during a power-on recovery. The next was a year later, when he performed an emergency landing in Nebraska.

In 2015, Ford was forced to execute another emergency (read: crash) landing on a golf course in the Santa Monica area. He did not crash. It was a crash landing. Or, as Ford says, “I didn’t crash. The fucking plane crashed.” Ford describes the incident in a Men’s Journal article written by Peter Stevenson: “When the engine quit, my training had prepared me to deal with it in a way. I really didn’t get scared. I just got busy. I knew what I was going to do, and I knew how to do it.”

Ford’s landing on Monday, however, is a bit different that the previous incidents in that he simply landed on a taxiway… You know, where the planes hang out while waiting to take off.

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“Ok guys, if you could just put up a giant ‘No Parking’ sign, that’d be great.”

 

 

“Was that Airliner Meant to be Underneath Me?

The above quote isn’t likely to become as infamous as Urkel’s whining, “Did I do that?” Still, it’ll probably be uttered around the office a few times, maybe worked into one of the next 15 Star Wars movies somehow, and it’ll absolutely be re-quoted in trending headlines.

Of course, I’m a fan of Harrison Ford. Who isn’t? People with no soul, that’s who. But, I’m an even bigger fan of grounding pilots unfit to fly. So, here’s the big question:

Is Harrison Ford getting too old to fly?

The answer, of course, is that in the annals of legends, Ford is never old! But, here in down-to-earth reality, the answer might very well be yes. While Ford has flown numerous search and rescue missions (because of course he has), there comes a time when taking to the sky becomes dangerous for everyone in the vicinity.

We know that air traffic control cleared Ford to land on a runway, that he then had a close encounter with an airliner while landing on a taxiway, and that he had a safe landing. This info points to three conclusions:

  • He wasn’t paying attention (was distracted)
  • He mistook the taxiway for the cleared-to-land runway
  • He has zero fucks left to give

 

Don’t Ground me, Bro

Personally, I’d like to think that Ford is both a responsible pilot and in possession of an overloaded amount of fucks to give. Which means it’s more likely that age is playing a factor in judgment, whether he mistook the taxiway for the runway or whether he just plain couldn’t see it. David Lawler explains that “The incident has prompted an investigation from the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA), which could result in penalties ranging from a warning to the suspension of [Ford’s] pilot’s license. Landing on a taxiway is a violation of FAA rules.”

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“Here you are, Mr. Ford; one slap on the wrist. I mean warning.”

 

 

Once the FAA has had sufficient time to investigate, we might get to the bottom of this conundrum. Until then, please Harrison, for the love of all that’s holy, do not fly.

Today is…

February 14 is a lot of things:

  • My eldest dog-child’s birthday (she’s seven now)
  • A day in Black History month
  • The anniversary of Ellen Page coming out

Looking back in history, on this day, there were murders, mass shootings, economic recession in several countries, a collapsed water park in Russia, a shipwreck near Ireland, an asteroid-orbiting spacecraft, a ceasefire, the cinematic release of Silence of the Lambs.

I could go on, but we all know that the biggest thing about today is…

 

It’s Valentine’s Day

Some people love Valentine’s day, some people hate it (and some people buy birthday presents for their dog-children). I don’t feel strongly one way or the other about Valentine’s day, but I do feel a little aggravated at the people who get butt-hurt over this strictly-for-commercial-gain holiday. Their words.

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You know… Because gifts destroy our self worth. Especially when we don’t get any.

 

And I don’t disagree. But, why is that so bad? Some people spit out the words “Valentine’s Day” with as much force as Dave drinking apple juice only to realize it’s a urine sample. Seriously, you gotta read the label, man. So, before you get a full hate hard-on for Valentine’s Day because you’re single or your cats don’t appreciate you…

 

Think About it from an Economic Standpoint

Back in 2016, the National Retail Federation (NRF) estimated that Americans would spend about $19.7 billion for Valentine’s Day. “As the first major consumer holiday of 2016, Valentine’s Day could provide a positive boost in spending our economy needs,” NRF CEO, Matthew Shay, said in a statement accompanying the report.

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Ah, the smell of Capitalism.

 

In his 2016 article for U.S. News, Americans to Drop $20 Billion for Valentine’s Day, Andrew Soergel wrote, “These gains have been made possible in part by the growing number of Americans working in either full-time or part-time jobs; since the beginning of 2010, U.S. companies have created a net of more than 13.5 million new full-time and part-time positions.”

Wait… You mean spending money really does help make money? You get out of the economy what you put into it?!

I know, I know. I was once a young jaded girl who thought other people’s thoughts and regurgitated other people’s ideas. Then I realized it’s not ok to wear a bra on your head and runaround screaming, “Mayday, mayday, we’re going dooooowntown!” while making obscene gestures.

 

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That was the day I became an adult.

 

According to Laura Jerpi, “Consumer spending on Valentine’s Day gifts results in major retail sales that help many businesses meet their bottom line each year.” Meeting the bottom line one of those oft-regurgitated phrases that means nothing to a lot of people. I felt the same way. Suffice it to say that meeting the bottom line is imperative to keeping businesses up and running, and not ending up like K-Mart. In turn, that means job stability and employee pay raises, which means you can spend more, which means… I mean you get the cyclical nature of this, right? Of course you do.

So, next time you get completely, aneurysm-inducingly butt-hurt about this 100-percent-commercial-BS-holiday, just remember back to that low, low time in 2008-9, pull your up adult diapers (or pants, if that’s your thing), and try not to spoil this day for those people who really just want to give things to their loved ones.

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And dogs… obviously.

 

 

Andy Lidstone

Author, Interpreter, Wordsmith

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Elysia Lumen Strife

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