Cliches. They drove your 10th English teacher crazy. But I would say they have lasted as long as they have for a reason— lots of them are true! Wisdom can actually be very simple. Below are some cliches that have stood the test of time and are actually great life advice in disguise. I feel cheesy even writing some of this stuff, but bear with me: they’re worth remembering sometimes! Keep reading »
Is there anything funnier (sad-funny, I mean) than bigots who are completely incredulous about the fact that they are bigots? They are so unwilling to admit it. They usually have some other excuse — which only makes sense to them — about “disagreeing with lifestyle choices,” “some of my best friends are ___,” “sexism/racism/homophobia doesn’t really exist” or “love the sinner, hate the sin.” The moral/intellectual contortions are truly something to behold.
A perfect example would Unhappy In Tampa, a woman who wrote to the advice columnist Dear Abby to complain about how their not-asshole neighbors are now socially excluding Unhappy In Tampa and her husband. Oh no! That is horrible! Why would these mean neighbors do such a thing? Because Unhappy In Tampa and her husband refused to invite their gay and lesbian neighbors to their parties:
DEAR ABBY: My husband and I relocated to Florida a little over a year ago and were quickly welcomed into our new neighbors’ social whirl. Two couples in the neighborhood are gay — one male, one female. While they are nice enough, my husband and I did not include them when it was our turn to host because we do not approve of their lifestyle choices. Since then, we have been excluded from neighborhood gatherings, and someone even suggested that we are bigots! Keep reading »
Last weekend, I went skiing for the first time in over 10 years. To say I was nervous and excited would be an understatement; in the days leading up to my trip, I couldn’t help but worry about breaking a limb or, I don’t know, being crushed by an avalanche.
Thankfully, the friends who came along with me were much more experienced than I (like, pro level) and promised I’d be in good hands. Their teaching method? Throwing me in the trenches headfirst. They taught me how to stop and start using my skis, and that was about it – off to the chairlift we went. No ski school, no detailed lessons. Had I thought about what was happening I probably would have objected, but I blindly went along until I realized halfway up the lift that this was not the normal path for a beginner. But this was how they had learned, they explained, that putting yourself in the thick of it was the fastest way to get off the ground, and that they’d be nearby there the whole time. (By the way, PSA time, I am not saying you lovely readers should learn this way — it’s pretty risky!) Keep reading »
January seems to be the worst time of year for realizing how screwed up your life is. Everyone is talking about resolutions. You’re recovering from all the money you spent on the holidays. Taxes are coming up. It’s the month your parole gets repeatedly denied. It’s the month that says, “Here’s a shitload of enormous problems. Oh, yeah, and here’s a grocery list of crap you need to change about yourself, because the rest of the year you are an overindulgent, self-destructive child.”
Big change — the type you have to make in order to pull yourself out of a turd landslide — is different. It’s scary and requires a hundred times more work than just regular living. Digging yourself out of a hole isn’t about survival … it’s about pulling ahead. In doing that, there are some basics that, in my experience, have to happen. Or at the very least, they make the shoveling a whole lot less brutal. Read more on Cracked…
Have you been on the magic carpet ride this month? All the hectic Christmas and Hanukah rituals are over for this year, and in the wake of all the festivities I am reminded of what’s really important in my life—my cherished relationships. Sometimes as I race from one activity to the next, I can forget to how to breathe deeply. How about you? Are you so focused on your daily commitments and busy schedules that you forget to breathe out … fully? To let … go? Learn how to decrease stress on Your Tango…
2013 was a year of enormous personal upheaval for me. I met my life partner and married him just five months later at City Hall. I lost a friend to suicide. I distanced myself from people who weren’t proving themselves to be interested in the caliber of friendship that I want to invest in. I made huge strides in standing up for myself and not taking other people’s bullshit — a lot of which had to do with the wedding.
Most of the changes that occurred were ultimately good for me. At least, that’s how I choose to look at them. All of the changes, though, required me to get out of my comfort zone in order to figure out what was right for me. I’ve always been a risktaker, but this year felt especially poignant. Keep reading »
How’s this for a nightmare scenario: a friend is over and suddenly thrusts a beautifully-wrapped gift in your face and you had no idea she was expecting to exchange presents. Or your family agreed to just give presents to the children this year, but your showoff-y sister just arrived with handmade DIY presents for everybody. Quick, it’s time to take a peek around the house for last-minute things you can re-gift! Keep reading »
I loooove the holidays. But that doesn’t make the lead-up any less of a bitch. The older I get, the more I find how unforgiving this season can be. When I was a little girl, I never understood why some of the grown-ups in my life seemed to dread it so much.
An English professor once told me that the biggest theme of my life is trying to resist disillusionment even though the world makes no effort to hide what an ugly, unfair place it can be. Call me melodramatic, but is there any better way to describe the typical struggle we face when it comes to getting through the holidays? On the surface, it’s a happy, cheerful time of year. We want to enjoy it, but on the other hand, it’s pretty damn treacherous. Spending time in close quarters with family members that you only see once a year is stressful. So is the pressure to pick out the perfect gifts, to be a great hostess, and to somehow make your bank account survive it all. Keep reading »
I’ve always liked The Washington Post‘s advice columnist Amy Dickinson, AKA “Dear Amy,” but after reading her recent response to a homophobic parent, I LOVE her. Here’s the letter:
DEAR AMY: I recently discovered that my son, who is 17, is a homosexual. We are part of a church group and I fear that if people in that group find out they will make fun of me for having a gay child. He won’t listen to reason, and he will not stop being gay. I feel as if he is doing this just to get back at me for forgetting his birthday for the past three years — I have a busy work schedule. Please help him make the right choice in life by not being gay. He won’t listen to me, so maybe he will listen to you. — Feeling Betrayed
Ugh, right? But don’t worry, Amy’s response is on point: Keep reading »
Warning: if you are literally stuck in a paper bag and can’t figure out how to get out, please stop reading right now and call for help. If you are stuck in a paper bag as in you “don’t know your ass from your elbow,” are having an “existential crisis” or are “stuck in a rut” and can’t figure out how to get unstuck, you should probably keep reading.
I heard recently the saying “stuck in a rut” originally came from farmers who would drive their tractors down the same route in dirt every day and after a while, the tractor wheels would build up a significant groove, or rut, that would eventually become too high for the tractor wheels to jump. When a tractor got stuck in this rut, it would require many super strong people to hoist the heavy machinery up and move it in a different direction so that it could forge a new path. In this metaphor YOU are the tractor. But I’m sure you knew that. Keep reading »