Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Funny Side of PTL

There is a certain Internet acronym called:


This fun, little guy is short for something very, very serious among us religious folk.
It means:


But for the life of me, I can never seem to remember this when I run across it in an email or FB post. Instead, my mind translates it to mean:


Now, you may think that such a flub would result in endless laughter and hilarity! Because when your brain translates PTL to mean “pain in the ass,” what could possibly be funnier than reading:

Henry is out of the hospital, PTL, and back home!


PTL!! My in-laws made it here in time for Christmas!!!


PTL Amy is going to be assisting me at work!

But eventually, it gets annoying. Because there are some people that just PTL all over the place. It’s PTL this and PTL that, and despite my attempts to consciously switch the term to mean the RIGHT thing in my brain, there's no hope for the misread connotation. It sticks with me and refuses to change to the positive and hopeful. So in a nutshell, an email or note of extreme YAY-JESUS celebration becomes one, gigantic piece of angry that annoys me to death.

In other words, the PTLs still become PITAs.

And I’m back where I started.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

The Trouble with Facebook

So remember the time the Internet came to the world and it was awesome? And then remember when MySpace showed up and that was even better, and then Facebook came and WOW SO AWESOME? Remember that?

And then remember how something horrible happened when you started realizing that some of your friends are terrible at things like, oh, I don’t know, grammar and punctuation? Remember that?

Remember how it annoyed you, but you were able to move past it?

And then remember when Facebook changed their rules and all of a sudden adults joined in and started sending you friend requests and you’re like “ok, cool” but then suddenly you realize it’s not just your friends that suck at spelling, but adults suck at it, too? And not just regular “who cares” adults, but adults that you used to think of as being really smart and savvy and awesome? Remember how these “do-no-wrong” adults would flaunt their inability to spell all over the Internet? And remember how your world came crashing down? Remember that?

And you tried to ignore it. You tried to tell yourself “hey, it’s not THAT big of a deal that this 50-year-old man whom I greatly admire has the spelling chops of a second grader. It doesn’t matter, because not everyone has to be great at grammar. Some people are gifted in different ways.”

But then on top of the really bad spelling, these people, who used to be so epic in your mind, begin to forget to use periods, resulting in endless run-on sentences without any conjunctions. And again you tell yourself it’s not a big deal. You tell yourself they’re still the same people they were before Facebook. Before the Internet. Before the world advertised their educational missteps. And you try to not feel like you’re smarter than they are, but you can’t help it. Because doesn’t poor grammar equal not-as-smart?

And then just when you’re feeling badly about looking down upon others in such a villain-in-a-Dickens-novel way, you realize there’s no way for someone to write THAT poorly. For someone to be THAT bad at grammar, yet still so well spoken and awesome. And then it hits you. 

This issue has nothing to do with poor education, but everything to do with laziness.

And you get really angry, because to YOU punctuation and grammar are very important. After all, if we all spoke in brocken english how would we ever take each otherr seriusly huh tell me what wuld come of the world

And so you grit your teeth as you read status update after run-on status update and your blood starts to boil and you shake your head at their laziness.

And then, after double checking your punctuation and looking up the meaning of a word before you plaster it on Facebook for all the world to see, you hit “post” only to realize you’ve made a stupid error and NOW EVERYONE IS GOING TO SEE IT AND THINK THAT YOU’RE DUMB.

And suddenly you envy those free spirits. Those run-on beatniks. Those syntax hippies. Those alphabet nonconformists.

They have what you don’t. What you will never have. The ability to speak without spellcheck. To type without the thesaurus. To post ... to post without remorse.

So maybe these adults that were so awesome and amazing before the Internet are still awesome and amazing because they aren't bound by the rules of the English language. They're free.

And you realize that even online, you are still the lowly padawan and they, all-knowing Jedi masters.

And once again, they are awesome in your mind.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

The Story of How I Got Engaged to a Rock Star

Once upon a time, I had a massive crush on a rock star. He was in a no-name screamo group from somewhere in the Carolinas. They toured the US (still do), so even though he wasn’t a major rock star, he was a minor one.

Minor rock star = good enough for me!

Here is the band, Emery, as they look today:

And now, for the sake of making this story really come alive for you, here is the one that I loved:

Those of you who know me really well are now like “saw that a mile away” and those of you who know me somewhat are probably thinking about how you thought you had me pegged but now this throws everything off and YOU DON’T KNOW ME AT ALL ANYMORE!! Settle down. It’s okay. There will be other opportunities to predict my past crushes, I’m sure of it.

So, where was I? Oh yes ... I LOOOOOVVVVED him. He was in all of my M.A.S.H. lineups (as in the marriage game) and I talked about him incessantly. So much so that all of my guy friends were aware of this deep affection.

So when Emery headlined a tour my senior year, I knew I had to go. And even more than that, I knew I wasn’t going to miss this opportunity to settle the matter of romance once and for all.

After all, there comes a point in every girl’s crush when she has to know whether it’s time to stop pining.

So my friends and I made our way down to Indy so that I could get married.

Now like all good bands, desperate for fans, Emery hung out on stage after the show. I watched from a distance for awhile, waiting for the right sign...the right idea. Then, it hit me.

In a stroke of college maturity, I pulled out a piece of paper and scribbled something like this on it:

With one of my guy friends (also someone I had a crush’s funny how stupid you are in college) right behind me, I walked up to Josh and held the paper out to him. He looked at it, his greasy, stringy hair covering his eyes. Then, he asked for a pen. I scrambled and finally handed it to him.

He began to scribble. I thought I’d die. I caught a glimpse of what Josh was writing:

I held my breath. I couldn’t believe it. This was it. The moment that would make or break everything I’d ever planned for in life.

In the midst of this, their lead guitarist, Matt, tried to talk to me.

He asked a string of questions that to this day I can’t remember. I mean it’s hard to keep your head on straight when all you can smell is the sharpie ink emanating from your love proposal. I gave him one-word answers and fleeting glances. I mean COULDN’T HE SEE THAT I’D ALREADY PICKED MY MAN? Finally, he gave up before...HOLY CRAP!

And that was it. I went home an engaged woman. Josh and I didn’t talk after that. In fact the only words he ever said to me were “Do you have a pen?” But I knew what we had was real.

Months later, I would lament not talking to Matt more. But what can you do? You’re dumb in college. You can’t see the forest for the trees, and a piece of paper engagement is more important than a guy who actually wants to engage in conversation.

But still...

Come to think of it, I should probably tell Josh about Tad.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Why No One Hits on Me at the Gym

You know those random thoughts you have that even though you’re like “Why am I thinking about this? I don’t even care about this topic/idea/question/what-have-you!” you can’t not think about them because they are, after all, random thoughts and you have no control over such things?

Well, I had one the other day. And it went something like: “Why don’t I ever get hit on at the gym?”

BEFORE I GO FURTHER, I must say that I really don’t want to get hit on at the gym. I mean first, I’m married. And second, even if I needed that little ego boost it’s not like the guys there are really all that flattering. I mean, sure, you have the occasional beefcake. But the one that I’m thinking of in particular has star tattoos on his triceps. Not really my type...or anyone's type aside from some shot girl working at a club.

So this thought kind of stuck with me, and I really started analyzing myself. Am I really that out of shape? Am I less attractive than the other girls? Is it just a myth that the gym is a place to hook up? I really mulled this over, folks, until the answer hit me whilst I was looking at my reflection in the gym's giant mirror.

I have horrible workout clothes.

Most girls there are really matchy-matchy, with their hot pink Fila shorts and white-with-pink-accents Fila tank and white and pink shoes. You know the type.


If they’re not matchy-matchy, they’re pretty basic with running shorts and a plaint-shirt. And if they don’t fit into either of those categories, they’re probably high schoolers with high school track t-shirts and such.

And then, there’s me.

I used to have lots of great workout clothes. But then I stopped working out. And gained weight. And now those clothes don’t fit. So, I’m stuck with this ensemble:

And this t-shirt:

Oh, and this t-shirt:

Clearly, this is why I don’t turn heads. Because I look like some grade schooler who just rolled out of bed. And I’m okay with that. Like I said, I don’t need to get hit on.

But then today, all of my workout shirts were dirty, so I was left digging through my dresser and random storage places for clothing before I found this...a t-shirt I bought at a concert I attended in college.

Yes, that is a creepy ghost woman.

I find it sad that my once-treasured concert t’s are now degraded to unattractive workout wear. But such is life. (Plus, this shirt is a major step above Royal Chambers, wouldn’t you agree?)

If anything, despite still feeling un-hit-on-able, I can comfort myself with the fact that I bought this shirt at the very same concert at which I asked a band member to marry me. And he said yes. Kind of erasing the non-hit-on-able feeling. But that’s another blog post for another day. Maybe Thursday.

Ps. Yes, this was the band. Can you guess who the lucky guy was?