Monthly Archives: September 2016

BORES: Board of Rule Enforcement in the Suburbs

I live in the suburbs, and no, that’s not an apology. It suits me. There are good schools, nice yards and almost nonexistent crime. But it’s not all green grass and rainbows out here. Like any other community, we have our downside. For example, we have far too many rules, and I’m breaking most of them. If there is a Board of Rule Enforcement in the Suburbs (let’s call them BORES), they’d probably eject me if they knew my deep, dark secrets.

City dwellers, aka the cool kids, make fun of our cookie cutter houses, lack of night life, our leaf blowers. and our snobs. I’ll be the first to admit that all the good music and restaurants are in the city. However, if I want to hear great music or eat at a cool, trendy restaurant, I can drive into town, partake, drive back to my quiet neighborhood and go to bed with almost 100% certainty that my car will still be in my driveway when I wake up.

Those secrets I mentioned…

I raised two kids in the suburbs without ever wearing a ball cap or ponytail and without driving a minivan (gasp). There was plenty of room for the kids, plus a labrador retriever in my 1992 Saturn SL2. I never could imagine myself in a station wagon or minivan – which are basically the same thing.

Chocolate lab

He always wore his seatbelt

Somewhere along the way, suburban moms traded in their minivans for 9 seater SUVs that they struggle to maneuver. Just last week, my husband and I went to the movies at our local clean, quiet suburban movie theatre. We saw Sully, where we watched a skilled pilot land a jet on a river without losing a single passenger. Then, as we were walking out, we had to stop and wait for a woman’s repeated attempts to back out her ginormous vehicle (nearly the size of Sully’s jet). Needless to say, there were only two passengers in her monstrous automobile. Eventually, she freed herself from the confines of her parking space and we were able to move along. This is not uncommon in my neighborhood. It’s a daily occurrence. Ironically, or perhaps not, Chevrolet’s 9 seater SUV is called the “Suburban.”

Full disclosure: After my kids were grown, I quadrupled my dog collection, and “upgraded” to an SUV. To clarify, it’s a normal sized, 5 seater Ford Escape. The dogs can all fit in the back with the seats down and they never fight about who gets to sit in the front seat. However, when this vehicle eventually dies, I’m going back to a small car. I miss my old Saturn and hope to find something like it someday. However, the BORES may kick me out if I do.

Ford Escape

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They’re NOT pants!

Another thing that may get me banished: yoga pants. I don’t wear them in public. I wrote a blog post about yoga pants not being pants (read it here). I just bought my first pair – two pair actually – this year. Can you believe that? I wear one pair to the gym. The other pair is in the closet with the tags still on them. I don’t go to yoga classes, but neither do the women you see wearing yoga pants in public.

I’m surprised they haven’t already kicked us out for not having a beautiful, plush lawn. I did, however, get a citation once for my grass being too high. Yep, when crime is low, the city has time for things like driving around to make sure that the residents mow their yards to an appropriate height. It didn’t really matter to the guy that I was a little busy with my husband deployed and looking for my two dogs that had run away.

So, I’m trusting you to keep my secrets. The BORES already know that we don’t have a lawn service. They can’t find out that I’m driving around in the suburbs in my undersized vehicle with no ball cap, no ponytail and no yoga pants.

 

 

Follow Your Brain

I’m not a big fan of aphorisms. They’re thrown around much too easily, insinuating that we can all copy and paste them into our own lives. Cliches like… “Follow Your Dreams” and “Do What You Love” just don’t work for a realist like me. My dream is to lose weight, but I love ice cream. My dream is early retirement. I love my days off. However, I also dream of eating every day. And I love doing so with a roof over my head. Instead of “Do What You Love”, I “Do What I Must” so that I can afford to do what I love.

These adages are everywhere. Even Elvis told us to “follow that dream, wherever that dream may lead.” I’ll admit it worked for Elvis, but he was a rare talent. His is a once-in-a-lifetime story. A teenager pays a few bucks to make a record for his Mama’s birthday present and next thing you know he’s the biggest star in the world.

dream, Elvis
Following your passion sounds romantic, but what if you’re no good at your passion? Think of all the egregious auditions you’ve seen on American Idol. We have collectively cringed at some of the worst singers ever aired on television only to find them in complete shock to learn that they suck. Should they continue to follow that dream? Or should they find out where their true talents lie?

I’m pragmatic. The only way I could follow my dreams would be after careful consideration and analysis. The dream would have to be beneficial and do more good than not. When I pursued my dream of becoming a nurse, my family had to sacrifice as much as I did. It was a lot to ask. But it was temporary and when it was all over, I had a career that has sustained me and my family ever since. It goes without saying that my nursing career has helped other people as well. (If it goes without saying, why do we still say it?)

My advice would be to follow your brain. It knows so much more than your heart.

brain-and-heart
My favorite bad advice is to “Live Like You Were Dying.”  Let me just say that living like I’m dying means that none of my responsibilities will be tended to. If I were dying, I would not spend my last days at work. The laundry will pile up and the house will be dusty. Assuming that all of my loved ones will also be shirking their duties, we will be floating on the lake, singing loudly along with an oldies station and eating comfort foods… like Kraft Macaroni and Cheese.

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Now, don’t start feeling sorry for me thinking that I’m living a dreamless life of mediocrity. I am living my dream. All of our dreams are different. While one person dreams of being the CEO of a Fortune 500 company and another dreams of seeing all seven continents, somewhere there’s a mother of three toddlers who dreams of sleeping late and going to the bathroom alone. I’m rooting for her!

 

Finding Funny Has Moved

Finding Funny has it’s own website!

If you’re reading this, that’s a good sign that I did something right. I’ve moved my blog and, as it happens in most moves, some things fell off the truck. The words all showed up, but the pictures didn’t quite make it. I fixed that the hard way, but two of the photos are sideways!

The first step was setting up the website. Of course, I wanted to keep the same name so I tried to register findingfunny dot com. Wouldn’t you know that someone has the rights to it? UGH! However, they’re even not using it. There’s no website by that name. My guess is that someone registered the name then forgot their password. They say you should choose your dog’s name carefully because it’s going to be your password for years to come. Looks like whoever has the rights to findingfunny doesn’t have a dog and was forced to use a forgettable password.

Since someone has my name, I had to hyphenate (finding-funny). I’m not a fan of hyphenated names, unless yours is hyphenated and then, of course, I totally love it. No, really. In my case, I worry that people won’t be able to find me due to my new hyphen. But again, you’re reading this, so all is well.

This is my first post from my new site so it’s really just a practice and not very funny. I have so much to learn. I’m not in love with the way it looks. It does look much better by phone. So, get off your computer and read this on your phone!

I’m everywhere! 

Finding Funny also has a Facebook page (Click here to like it). And Finding Funny is on Twitter (https://twitter.com/iamfindingfunny). PLEASE give me suggestions of people to follow on Twitter, preferably funny people. And, I’d appreciate it so much if you followed me. I haven’t tweeted anything because I’d be tweeting silently into the nothingness that is my following. I’m sorry, that was so rude to my two followers. They’re not nothing. Right now, they’re everything! Thank you both!

I really appreciate all of you who read this blog and indulge my little hobby. I promise the next post will be funny.

 

Do You Hear What I Hear?

Do you remember?

Misheard song lyrics. We all do it. My most embarrassing misheard lyric is a line in the song September by Earth, Wind and Fire. While I was singing “Do you remember when it was hot in September,” the actual line is “Do you remember the 21st night of September.” The embarrassing part isn’t so much that I sang the words wrong, but the number of decades that I sang the wrong words.

There are many commonly misunderstood lyrics. We all know that Elton John doesn’t actually say “Hold me closer, Tony Danza” even though it sounds that way. Jimi Hendrix did not “kiss this guy.” I spent most of the 70s thinking that Creedence Clearwater Revival was giving directions to a “bathroom on the right.” To this day, when I hear Caught Up In You by .38 Special, I sing “Aunt Bea it’s true, you’re the one.” You never know, maybe they’re just big fans of The Andy Griffith Show. And don’t get me started on Blinded By The Light.
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People who mishear lyrics are at least trying to listen. It’s the people who “love this song!” without having a clue what it says that make me laugh. And I’m not talking about vague, obscure lyrics and metaphors. I’m talking about literal, clear, non-disguised words. There are still people who have no idea that Lola (the Kinks’ Lola, not Barry Manilow’s) is a dude. Every Breath You Take (The Police) is about an obsessed stalker, yet many a newly married couple has made it their wedding song.

That’s not what he said!

A song called In The Living Years (Mike + The Mechanics) came on the radio at work one day. A coworker said that it reminded her of her dad. “Oh, you and your dad didn’t get along?” I asked her. She looked at me completely puzzled. She said, “He says he wishes he’d told his father that he loved him before he died.” Yeah, except that it doesn’t say that anywhere. I didn’t tell her, but this song is about a difficult relationship between father and son. Repeatedly throughout the song, it says “It’s too late when we die to admit we don’t see eye to eye.”

Sometimes we try to assign deep meaning to songs when in reality, it’s just nonsense lyrics set to a good beat. When the Kingsmen released Louie, Louie in 1963, they were investigated by the FBI for obscene lyrics. However, no obscenities were found. It was just another case of misheard lyrics.

I can’t understand anything Tom Petty or Bob Dylan sing, but that’s because neither of them move their mouths when they sing! Most of my misheard lyrics are Elton John’s (electric boobs and a mohawk too). I don’t know why I have so much trouble understanding him. You can name any Elton John song and there will be at least one line that I’ve had to look up.

Speaking of looking up lyrics… how great is that? Back in the olden days, we had to keep picking up that needle and moving it back to listen to the song over and over until we understood – or gave up and sang it wrong.

lyrics

What are some song lyrics that you’ve misunderstood?

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