Gratefulness and Stuff...
Disclaimer: The photos you are about to view are in NO way related to the content of this post. They are simply photos of life over the last few months mostly taken off my very old phone (hence, the poor quality). I would have included better quality and more relevant photos if I had any. But I don’t. If you are looking for blog perfection, you have come to the wrong place, my friend. Oh, have you come to the wrong place.
I don’t know about you all, but I have a few million-dollar ideas up my sleeve. You know the ones; the type you come up with late at night while throwing back beverages with your besties. It starts as a joke and then you find yourself up at 3 a.m. thinking to yourself, “Actually…that idea is f*$#ing genius. I’m gonna do this”. (I am pretty sure that is how Cards Against Humanity was created. And mittens. And probably electricity. Just sayin’.)
But then you sober up. You are officially hung-over and your brilliant idea feels a little less brilliant and a whole lot more like work. And, if you are like me, you and decide that anything that requires more energy than popping 2 extra-strength Advil is pretty unlikely to ever actually come to fruition. At least for that day.
As your headache starts to subside, you find you are too busy rejoicing in the fact that you can now hold conversations that involve more than primal grunting that you forget about your brilliant idea entirely. At least, until that next round of beverages. And then the cycle begins again.
Well folks…today I am breaking the cycle. I’m recording my million-dollar ideas right here on this blog. That way when someone steals them and makes a boatload of cash, at least I have proof that I was, once, almost rich.
Brilliant Idea #1: Hones-tees
I have this theory that if people were just more honest and straightforward with one another that life would be a lot easier. I think a lot of first world problems stem from a need or desire to put up a less than authentic front. We do this for a variety of reasons: in order to conform to social norms, to disguise our insecurities, to keep up with the Jones’ etc… But what would happen if we just came out and were honest? I feel like, in many respects, life would just get so much easier. Enter Hones-tees. It is a tee shirt that expresses an honest truth in your life. You wear it. People see it. People respond accordingly. I feel like that explanation sucks so let me paint the picture another way. Imagine you are new to town and know no one. You order an Hones-tee that states, “I just moved to town. I could use a friend.” You wear it to a bar/restaurant. And, lo and behold, rather than having to wait until you are drunk/brave enough approach a complete stranger to talk to, someone approaches you and maybe tells you where you can find the best Mexican (food, that is). Because, as they can clearly see from your tee-shirt…you need a friend. Of course you could use Hones-tees in a million different ways: You need a job, you think the latest episode of the Walking Dead was the worst thing ever and wanna talk about it, you have an adorable kitten that needs to be adopted. Gosh…how much easier would it be to advertise that information openly on your shirt?
Okay…admittedly this idea probably would not generate a million dollars. Shit, it probably would not even generate 50 dollars; there are some serious flaws in the design, most notably the fact that some things are probably better left unsaid (i.e. I just got fired because my boss thought I was lazy or this). But wouldn’t it be a fantastic social experiment? Buzzfeed or Upworthy would be all over that shit. I can see the viral video now.
Brilliant Idea #2: Manternity Pants
Yup, you read that correctly…MANternity pants. If you have been pregnant before you understand that, while not sexy, maternity pants are the bomb! You can let it all hang out and yet keep it all contained. Are you with me ladies? Friggin’ genius, ammiright? But why should pregnant women get to have all the fun? Especially when we all know that it is a scientific fact that men over 50 have bigger bellies than your average pregnant lady. Enter Manternity pants…the pants that keep on giving. It might take a little while to catch on, but I am pretty certain these pants would eventually sell like hotcakes. Men would either buy them for themselves because they just want to be as comfortable as possible while watching football and taking down a plate of nachos or, the more likely scenario, you would buy this as a Christmas present for your Uncle Bob because it is hilarious and everyone would get a big kick out of it. Either way there is a real market for these pants. Not convinced? Think snuggie. No one actually wanted one but that didn’t make it any less desirable. You want it because it is ridiculous. And ridiculous sells.
Brilliant Idea #3: Gratefulness Camp
This last idea came to me while talking to my child. Upon hearing his response (probably something like, “But I don’t waaaaannt gummy bears. I want gummy woooooooorrrrrms. Humph.”), I realized that he was dangerously close to becoming a spoiled brat.
The idea is this: You pay me a lot of money. I take your kid off your hands for 1 week…maybe 2. During this time, I basically torture your child. Not like physical torture…more like first-world torture. Basically this means I would take away their iPad, video games, TV and noisy/expensive toys. In addition, at Gratefulness Camp, there would be no personalized meals. In fact, the only thing your kid would be offered to eat that week would be rice, broccoli and water. Maybe a slice of whole wheat bread WITH the crust. Maybe. Don’t worry, I would not kiss them and hug them and tell them they are amazing. Instead, I would expose them to extended periods of genuine boredom. For instance, one camp activity would involve setting them in a room for 6+ hours with nothing more than a ball of yarn, 4 sticks, 1 piece of chewing gum and a feather.
After two weeks, your kids would be BEGGING you to come home. And when they got back, they would be so darn grateful for you and your parenting efforts! They would come home and compliment your cooking. They would notice when you are tired and offer to help out around the house. They would thank you excessively for showing them love and affection. They would insist that they do not need so many toys and devise new and innovative ways to donate their extra belongings to those less fortunate. Through gross deprivation they would learn to be grateful for the even the smallest gestures.
Genius, right? There are probably some legal issues that need to be ironed out but overall it is pretty fool-proof, yeah?
Okay, fine. It is extreme. And, just like the Hones-tee and the Manternity pants, it is never going to happen. But can we at least admit that it would probably be amazingly effective?
With Gratefulness Camp indefinitely on the back burner, I had to think of a more ethical way to instill more thankfulness into Beau’s behavior. ‘Tis the season, after all. And after much deliberation, I decided to use the very old-fashioned method of just talking to him.
Here is how that went down:
Me: Hey Beau! November is a very special month. Do you know why?
B: Ummmmmmm….[thinking hard]…it is Christmas!
Me: Well, no. Christmas is actually in December but there is a special holiday that we celebrate in November. Do you know what that is?
B: Hmmmm…maybe my birthday?
Me: Nope, it is not your birthday. It is a special holiday called Thanksgiving.
B: Oh. Mama, did you know that a cheetah is the fastest land animal in the world?
Me: Yeah buddy, I did. Do you know what we do on Thanksgiving?
B: GET PRESENTS!!! Yahoooooooo!
Me: Well, no. Actually, we don’t get presents on Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is a day when we give thanks for all the people and things in our lives that we love.
B: Vvvvvvvrrooooooooooooom. Rocketship blasters off we go! To the rescue!
Me: Hey buddy…yoooohooo…are you listening? Do you know what we do on Thanksgiving?
B: Ummmmmm….get presents?
Me: [Sigh.] No. We give thanks. What is something you are thankful for?
B: Let’s see…..getting presents?
Me: Okay… fair enough. What about something other than presents?
Me: Oh dear. We have some work to do.
B: Gliders ignite your engines! Get ready to attack! Mama…mama…. MAAAAMMMMAA!
Me: Yes, darling…what is it? You do not have to yell.
B: I want a new toy for Christmas. The Gup S. Okay? Okay, Mama?
B: And the Gup H.
On second thought, I think Gratefulness Camp has real potential. Please make your checks payable to Ditty. First session starts ASAP!
Happy Thanksgiving y’all! I am very thankful that you all take time out of your busy lives to read this very imperfect blog. Very thankful, indeed!