Welcome to Snarkfest

Welcome to my snarky corner of the web. Join me as I discuss everything from wine to chocolate. There may be a few other topics mixed in there too. I talk a bunch about my amazing offspring, 19 and 17. I sometimes go on and on about my secret crush on the amazing Mike Rowe. I talk about things that irritate me or things that make me happy. Sometimes I just talk to hear myself talk. Feedback is always appreciated but please make sure it's respectable. No nudity or profanity. I'm the only one allowed to be profane. But any and all snark is welcome and appreciated!

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

I found a dog....

The following events actually happened. Nothing has been embellished. I swear, every single word is true. Honestly, file this under "you can't make this shit up".

Last Saturday I got into my car to run an errand and saw a small dog walking up my street. I live on a relatively busy street that leads to an even busier county road, read: lots of fast moving cars and idiot drivers. Not the safest place for a dog.

This is a dog. It's not the actual dog I found. I just needed a cute dog picture for the post. So sue me.
I sat in my car toying with the idea of getting out to see what the dog's deal was, or just going about my business and running my errand. Then I thought of my two dogs, Henry and Cosmo. If one of my dogs got out, I would hope that someone would take the time to make sure he didn't run into traffic, to make sure he was kept safe. So I got involved.

That was my first mistake.

I checked the dog for signs of ownership. No collar, no tags, no leash, no identifying marks. I brought the dog into my house and put it in my dog crate (I had my husband put our two boys outside so they didn't think I had brought them a chew toy). I posted the dog's picture on our HOA Facebook page alerting anyone who may be missing a dog to the fact that I had found one. Then I ran my errand.

When I got back, I checked the HOA Facebook page and saw no results, so I decided to check the dog to see if I could provide more details (male or female, coloring, age, etc). That's when I saw that this poor dog was infested with fleas and flea eggs. And it was sitting in my dog crate, with our blankets and our dog towels. Oh hell no. I treat my dogs for fleas with Frontline every month and I can't have an untreated dog infested with fleas in my house. No flipping way. So I called the local animal control office to make sure they were there on the weekend, and I got dressed, put the dog in a carrier and brought it to their office.

Let me make this perfectly clear: had this dog been flea-free, and not shown signs of infestation, I would have kept the dog all day, hoping that the owner could be located. However, that is not the case. This dog, this sweet innocent animal was crawling with fleas, and keeping it around my dogs was not an option.

Upon returning from the animal control office, someone messaged me that they knew who the owner was.

Then the owner saw my FB post on our HOA page and, I shit you not, accused me of stealing her dog.

You read that right. She said I stole her dog. But wait it gets better. These are literally, word for word, the posts she made on my Facebook post. Keep in mind, I found her dog. I made sure it did not get hit by a car. I could've just looked the other way and let someone else deal with it. But I didn't. This was the owner's response to my post. Each sentence was posted in a separate comment.

You can pay the $50 to pick her up

And I will file charges against you for stealing her I saw you drive off

They will not release her and I am coming to your house

!!!!!!!!!   (I'm not lying, that was an actual individual comment right there)

I just called 911

And I am waiting for the officer to call me

That's wrong what you did

And I don't have time for this (apparently she had time to post on FB over and over)

 I am filing a civil case.

You do not steal any pet !! And it's reported

I would shut your mouth !!

(someone posted here that I had done the right thing, the owner responded below)

No let someone steal your dog

See how you react

These people have nothing better to do pretty sad

It was wrong and it's been reported I wont drop it I will do what I have to  !!

Ok so here's the deal. Had the owner spent money on proper care of the dog (ie flea meds), she wouldn't have had to bail her dog out of doggie lockup.

I always try to teach my children to do the right thing. To make good choices and to help others if you are able. And yet, I thought I was doing the right thing, and it came back to bite me in the ass.

Did I do the wrong thing by taking the dog to animal control? Would you have kept a flea-infested animal around your animals? In your flea-free house? Or am I the bad guy here. I'd love to know what you think.

If you liked this post, perhaps you'll enjoy reading about the time I found something on Henry that no dog should have.

Friday, October 28, 2016

Running and math don't mix.

I completed the Freedoms Run Marathon in record time!!! (for me)

My first marathon was the Marine Corps Marathon which I ran in 5:42:34. My average pace for that race was 13:03/mile. Pretty respectable for my first ever marathon.

My second marathon was the Disney Marathon and those of you who have been around awhile know that I ran the Goofy Challenge that year (Half Marathon Saturday, Full Marathon Sunday, lots of pain and suffering Monday) My time for that full marathon was something like 6:40 so that doesn't really count towards being a lickety split runner.  But I did kick ass during the half marathon with a time of 2:39:25 so I wasn't at all disappointed.

My finish time for the Freedoms Run was 5:40:22, a full 2 minutes and 12 seconds faster than my first full marathon. My average pace was 12:59/mile. I couldn't be happier about that than if Mike Rowe himself was waiting for me at the finish line to present me with my finisher's medal and a big wet sloppy kiss.

I had so much love and support that weekend, it was ridiculous. The morning started at 5:00 when I got up and dressed. My friend Susan was going to drive me to the shuttle bus to get to the starting line, but she feigned car trouble and instead told me she brought me another driver. Who should pop out from behind the car but my dear friend Jazzy Jen Powers, who came up from North Carolina just to cheer me on for my marathon. I cried when I finally realized who she was (in my defense, it was 5:30 a.m., pitch black outside and I was wearing sunglasses). She dropped me off at the shuttles with the promise of Pad Thai and wine that night, post-race. I can think of nothing better than good food and good friends to celebrate my victory.

The race started off with a little drizzle and about a mile in, it was a full on down-pour. It was during the second mile that I realized something. My washing machine is apparently not doing its job. The rinse cycle on my washer isn't getting all the detergent out of my clothes. How do I know this? Because I had, literally, a cuff of soap bubbles around each leg of my running capris from the downpour. I'm not kidding. I literally was leaving a trail of bubbles all over mile 2.

Luckily the rain eased up by mile 5, however, that's when I crossed the Potomac River and started running on the C&O Canal Towpath. The C&O that day resembled both Tough Mudder courses that I've run in the past. No lying, the towpath was nothing but 4" deep mud puddles as far as the eye can see. Normally, the towpath is one of my favorite places to run. Now, I don't care if I ever see it again. It was a muddy, slippery and dangerous mess.

At mile 15 I was able to get off the towpath and onto solid ground. That was the good news. The bad news is that at mile 15, the serious hills start, and they don't stop for another 6 miles. But more good news, my fake husband Joseph and one of my running sisters, Paula, met me at mile 15 and ran those hills with me. What a sweet blessed relief to be running with people I know and love, who were there to get me through the roughest part of the race!

My fake husband Joseph and I in the hills of Antietam Battlefield
We killed the hills of Antietam Battlefield and I was on track to PR this race after trying to do math in my head. Running and math don't mix. Just saying. Joseph left just before we left the Battlefield en route to Nutters for some ice cream while Paula and I trudged on. About 2 miles later, Paula had gotten her planned 8 miles in and she took her leave just as Joseph decided to join me again. Apparently, Nutters was closed, no ice cream for him, so what else could he do? He wanted me to PR and wanted to help make that happen.

It totally worked. I ran across that finish 2 minutes and 12 seconds faster than I did for my first full marathon. This time I was about 25 pounds heavier and 6 years older. And my family and friends were all waiting for me at that finish line. I cried as they ran the home stretch with me. PSA: running and crying are not possible at the same time, I ended up hyperventilating and nearly died.

Dear sweet baby Jesus can I stop running now??

My baby girl at the finish line, presenting me with a hug and my finishers medal

Me and the beautiful Jazzy Jen Powers who was with me at the start and the finish of my marathon

I could not have done this race without the love and support of my family, who I abandoned every Sunday from July through October for my long runs. Or Susan Reichel who biked alongside me through hill and dale, singing to me, threatening to hit me with her bike, making me coconut water concoctions that helped me survive the hot, treacherous hills of Maryland and West Virginia. Or Joseph Bertone and Paula Masters who got me through Antietam on a wet, cold October day. Or my running sister Lisa Kingsbury who is one of my biggest champions. If you sent a text, a call, a FB note, please know that your love and support meant the world to me.

The night I finished running, we did go for Pad Thai and wine, then spent the evening pretending to play cards but really gorged ourselves on more wine and chocolate (because my husband is amazing, he went to the store and bought all the chocolate he could find for us). And we laughed and talked well into the evening. It was an amazing weekend with wonderful friends and lots of pain. But all well worth it.

You can read about the events leading up to my full marathon here.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Snarkfest Runs a Marathon....

This Saturday morning I'll be up before the birds getting ready to run a marathon. This will be my 3rd marathon ever and I'm really excited about it. My first was the Marine Corps Marathon, and my second was part of the Goofy Challenge. For that, I ran a half marathon on Saturday and a full marathon on Sunday. Yeah, that was a little nuts. Or Goofy, as it were.

Goofy Challenge Bling
My bib and bling from the Goofy Challenge in 2012

But this weekend I'm running the Freedoms Run Full Marathon right here in my little town. The course runs through all sorts of historic places like the town of Harpers Ferry, the C&O Canal and the Antietam National Battlefield. These are all places I run almost daily, so it's literally like I'm running in my backyard. But for 26.2 miles. Hey it's a big backyard.

I'm totally ready. Hell, I'm almost looking forward to it. Almost.

I began training for this marathon in earnest back in mid-May. I've spent my mornings doing quick jaunts around my neighborhood and every Sunday has been consumed by double digit runs all through the summer. Most Sunday's I've been accompanied by one of my best friends (and the MOST excellent Sherpa) Susan. She has been riding her bike and carrying a backpack with a camel back, snacks and Ibuprofen to help me get through the long and mind-numbing miles. She has pushed me, mocked me, threatened me, sang to me and made me go farther and faster than I want to go. She assures me that I will thank her on race day. I'm sure after my suffering is over, I will do that.

My neighbor, the Nazi Crack Ho will be running the Half Marathon this year. I look forward to seeing her and her hubby, Sherpa Susan, my husband and favorite 16 year old daughter and many of my friends cheering me on at the finish line.

My goal is to finish in under 6 hours. The first 15 miles, from what I understand, is relatively flat so I should be able to average between 12-12:30/min mile. Once I hit those hills, I'll definitely be slowing down.

Wish me luck, Snarklings!

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Long Live the Schlepprocks!

In my hood, we have a wide variety of personalities. Some nice, some warm and fuzzy, some prickly, some tangy, just like a big grocery store full of dispositions. We've got plenty of fruits and nuts, some twigs and berries, we've got it all. And it's a pretty decent mix, except for the rotten bananas. You know the ones I'm talking about, the kind who travel around with a black cloud of doom hanging over their head, much like Schlepprock from the old Flintstones cartoons. Wherever Schlepprock goes, he brings a gloomy darkness and bad things happen. Yeah, we've got one of those as well.

This is the type of person who frequently pees in your cornflakes in the morning. For the sake of anonymity and originality, we'll call our Schlepprock 'Schlepprock'. Our neighborhood Schlepprock takes pride and pleasure in the misery of others. If you're having a sunny day, fear not, old Schlepprock will come to your house and rain on your sunny day. Or try to if you allow it. But the key is NOT to allow it. You see, our Schlepprock is a lone wolf in a pack of happy puppies. And we happy puppies need not let our Schlepprock bring us down.

Let's take a look at some examples of our Schlepprock in action. Our Schlepprock enjoys making the ideas of others seem somehow wrong. Several of our neighbors toyed with the idea of sharing resources to save money in these difficult times and brought up the idea of possibly pitching in to share in garbage collection. Several other like-minded opinions were shared, yet Schlepprock poo-poo'ed these ideas, suggesting instead that we all just buy one big house and live together. When another sweet neighbor suggested that with the high cost of oh, I don't know, EVERYTHING these days, it sounds like we could ALL benefit from pitching in and that even dual-income households are scrambling to make ends meet. Well, apparently this is not the case at Casa Schlepprock. Schlepprock's spouse apparently makes plenty o'bucks so that Schlepprock can stay home and take care of the little Schlepprocks. I applaud Schlepprock's spouse and their ability to manage on one income but the idea of a two-income household is a ridiculous theory to Schlepprock. No, Schlepprock looks down from their high horse upon those of us who all have to go out and do all that nasty stuff called work. Ew. Schlepprock replied to this sweet neighbor by suggesting that said sweet neighbor wasn't home often enough to be a good mother to her own children. Yes, THAT little nugget pissed more than a few neighbors off.

More recently, we had another little conversation going about the positives and negatives of HOA's. This is a hot button topic among all neighbors, and all involved have valid points of view. Even Schlepprock. However, as someone famous once said (and no, don't ask me who, because I don't know. It could've been someone who works for UPS or FedEx, but don't quote me. Maybe it was Mr. McFeely from Mr. Roger's Neighborhood, he was the postman, wasn't he? Anyway, I digress) it's all in the delivery. Delivery is key. It's all about delivery. You deliver your point of view in a grown up, respectful manner and your opinion is treated with the respect it deserves. You deliver your opinion like an ass, and that's the way you'll be treated. Watch your words. If you tell someone that you like the HOA because you don't want to live with a dirt ball mentality, and if you want to live with a dirt ball mentality, go move to a trailer park, then you are going to be challenged. And if you backpedal and say there was no name calling, then you're obviously suffering from short term memory loss and you should immediately change your name to Dorrie and go find a whale to have a chat with in your quest to find Nemo. And if you FURTHERMORE refer to someone as a bitch because they ask you to tone down the name calling, you deserve any ass-whooping that comes your way.

We all know people like this. They are everywhere in every community, hiding in the woodwork like cockroaches. They piss us off and then act innocent. Their opinion is much greater and much more important than yours. Their spouse is better than yours, their milkshakes bring all the boys to the yard. I say good for them. Long live the Schlepprocks, for if they disappear, it'll make it harder for me to unleash my snark. And it's not good for the snark to be locked up for too long. One must not bottle up the snark. So thank you, Schlepprocks of the world! Because of you, I'm never at a loss for a good topic for a blog post.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Better Things on FX AND a GIVEAWAY!!





Hey Snarklings, have you heard of the new show on FX called Better Things?  I watched the pilot episode last Thursday and aside from the fact that the main character Sam (played to perfection by Pamela Adlon) is a part-time porn star, I can totally relate to almost everything else that she deals with. While she has 3 daughters and I have 2, what she deals with is so relatable. That's probably the best word to describe the show: relatable.

Better Things on FX

As the pilot opens, her youngest is throwing a fake tantrum because she isn't getting her way. Been there, dealt with that. Then she deals with her teenager and the full-on attitude that comes with the teen years. Um, hello? Is there a TV camera hidden in my car?? Her middle child is a bit of an enigma. I haven't figured her out yet except for the fact the she barges into her mom's room despite Sam's repeated warnings to NOT come into her room. Who among us with kids EVER HAS PRIVACY? Again: relatable.

Better Things on FX

So far, after watching the pilot episode, I feel for Sam as a single mom. She wants the best for her daughters but while our children ARE our world, there has to be more, right? Is it wrong of us to want some alone time? Is it wrong to want a connection to more than just what our kids need? No, it's not. We love our kids but we deserve adult interaction, we NEED it. And so far, Sam needs it and I can totally relate to her. I'm looking forward to this week's episode to see what happens next. You can watch Better Things on FX on Thursday nights at 10:00 pm EST. But be warned, Better Things is for mature audiences only. Did I mention the main character is a part-time porn star? Yeah, no kids watching, please.

But wait, there's more!  FX has also given me a great box of swag to give to one of you lucky Snarklings! Check out the goods in this box:

Cool swag box

Ray-Ban Sunglasses
Chipolo Bluetooth Key Ring
Leather clutch
Travel pillow
Emergency beauty kit
Lip moisturizer
Mini Mints
Essential Oil blends

To enter to win this awesome swag bag, you need to do 2 things. Just comment below and tell me what overwhelms YOU! Laundry? Parenting? Work? What overwhelms you? Then, once you've commented, please complete THIS GOOGLE FORM so you may be entered to win! I will pick the winner from the Google Form, so make sure you've commented here AND completed the form!

Check back because I'll be drawing a winner on Thursday September 22 at noon! And make sure you tune in on Thursdays at 10:00 p.m. EST to watch Better Things on FX.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Drivin' Miss 16...

16 will be 17 soon, and a few weeks ago she got her drivers license. She aced the parallel parking part of the test early on and the lady who administered her test told me that 16 was the most confident and capable person she'd had all week taking the road test. SCORE!! And now she's Drivin' Miss 16!

I allow my child to drive my car to school. Does that make me a bad parent?

She got her license on a Wednesday and school started the next day. I opted to allow her to drive my car to school. And I've allowed her to drive to school almost every day since she got her license. Some people may think I'm crazy. I'm not.

A friend of mine posted on the Facebooks that she, too, had allowed her newly-licensed driver to take her car and OH THE HUMANITY!!!!! "Why would you let your kid take your car???" "Why do YOU have to walk to the store when you have a perfectly good car???" "That's not fair to you!!!!"

People were literally freaking out on her post, criticizing her for walking to the store and letting her kid take her car to school.

First of all, it's not really anyone's call but the owner of the car. Period. If you have an opinion, that's awesome. Good on you. But what you think doesn't really make much of a difference in anyone's life but your own, or in anyone's decisions but your own.

Here's my story: I work just under a mile from my office. I am a healthy 49-year old woman with fully functioning lungs and legs. I am fully capable of walking to my job. In fact, I actually ENJOY walking to my job. It gets me out in the sunshine, gets me fresh air, vitamin D and some much needed exercise. It's helping with weight-loss and it really doesn't suck as much as some nay-sayers would like you to think.

I also believe it's building my daughter's confidence. I have faith in her ability, I know she is careful, I know that she's capable and I know that it makes her feel good that I trust her enough to take my car to school. It also saves ME the trouble of having to go pick her up after sports or band practice every afternoon. If I continue driving her everywhere, she will not get the experience OR THE CONFIDENCE to do it for herself.

If it's raining, girlfriend gets to ride the bus and then I will go and pick her up from practice when I get out of work. But if it's a beautiful day outside, and I could use the exercise, and she could use the confidence building, why not let her drive? If she has her license but I drive her everywhere, what purpose does that serve? What experience is she getting?

So to all of the nay-sayers, I say this: it's none of your business if someone allows their kid to drive their car. If you have a child, parent that child. But don't judge another parent for their parenting decisions.

If you enjoyed this post, you may also find some humor in the story of my dueling GPSs.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Mean Girls Suck...

If you know me, you know that I've struggled with my weight since forever.  I began putting on weight in the 4th grade. I was heavier than most of the girls in my class, and since I was short, I carried all my weight from my hips down. Fat ass. Barrel ass. Thunder thighs. You name it, I heard it.

Funny thing, I heard it from the girls in my class. My peers. The boys? They never bothered me. They were my friends. They weren't the bullies. It was the mean girls with the big mouths and the bigger attitudes.

Bullies have been around since Jesus was a baby. Why are mean girls so...mean?

Starting in 6th grade, we had dances for grades 6-8 in my school. And I loved to dance, so when I went to dances, I danced my fat ass off.  I danced with my girlfriends and I danced with the boys in my class. I was mocked by the other girls in my class, the mean girls. But I never had a problem with the boys. They wanted to dance, and so did I. It was fun.

Maybe the mean girls didn't like that I was getting attention from the boys at the dance (trust me, it was all in friendship, I never dated any of the boys in my school, they just wanted to dance, nothing more). Who knows?  But because I was a fat girl, I was an easy target for them.

It hurt at first, not gonna lie. But eventually I stopped caring what they thought. In the years since I stopped giving a shit what other people think, I've run more than 20 half marathons. I've run 2 full marathons and am training for my third in October. I've become a published author and I am officially a New York Times Bestselling Author. My ass is still big but my confidence is bigger.

Both of my daughters have dealt with mean girls. Mean girls never go away, they will always be there and they will always suck. But both of my girls have the courage of their convictions and have found things at which they both truly excel, and they've learned (or are still learning) not to sweat the small stuff.  Both my girls kick ass at music and sports. They know they are good. They're not cocky or arrogant, but they are confident. Naturally, the mean girls hate that confidence and continue to be petty and small.  But my girls know the deal. They work hard, they practice, they do well and they get past the small people with their small minds and their petty bullshit. The means girls don't realize it but they are actually teaching my girls a good lesson.

In life, there will always be assholes. In every job, in every club, in every organization, in every facet of life, there will always been jackasses. Learning this early on, and learning how to deal with those jackasses from the start is helpful for the future. So if you are bullied, I realize it's easy for me to tell you to let it go and not let it bother you. But find what you are good at and work at it. Practice it, master it, and show the assholes that you're better than they are.