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Friday, December 9, 2011

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Friday Open Thread: Holiday Madness

What do you want for Christmas? Isn't it crazy that Hanukkah and Christmas are actually overlapping this year? Who in your life most recently called it a "true Christmukkah"? Weekend plans? Sophie's choice: mulled wine or mulled cider? Plus: a singable poem.

Photo by Christopher Elwell, via Shutterstock



488 Comments / Post A Comment

redheaded&crazy

TORONTO PIN UP

WHEN/WHERE/WHEN

etmakerelevant: I asked for red wine for christmas on every single wish list I made for people!

jacqueline
jacqueline

@redheadedandcrazy I am also a Torontonian that asked for red wine from everyone. Are we twins?

phlox

@redheadedandcrazy Pick a time and place! I think we were talking about the week between Christmas and New Years?

redheaded&crazy

@phlox Yes! I still like that plan. Let's go with the 28th!

I don't know bars in downtown toronto though. I just go to sneaky dees and then feel a creeping sense of shame that I've brought respectable people to such a place.

phlox

@redheadedandcrazy I finally went to Sneaky Dee's for the first time a few months ago! It's a bit loud for a Pin Up, though. I can call around to a few places for a reservation and update this and the Google Group later with a location.

missbennet

@redheadedandcrazy long time lurker - first time commenter... living in vancouver but will be in toronto on the 28th! i want to come too!

Megasus

@redheadedandcrazy 28th is the day BEFORE I have to move (but like, just within the building, so not too bad), so as long as I am in town I will be there!

Kate Kane

@redheadedandcrazy I don't live in Toronto, but there's a concert there on the 23rd that I'm VERY tempted to go to - clearly I should stay until the 28th. Concert + Pinup = best choices for the Holiday season.

atipofthehat

@redheadedandcrazy

What about Reposado, 136 Ossington Avenue? It's a tequila bar that sometimes has live music. (I will be in Toronto and will definitely come wherever it is!)

redheaded&crazy

@atipofthehat hooray! I love it when a plan comes together. Phlox seems to Know Bars way better than I do but um, I do like tequila!

phlox

@redheadedandcrazy Haha, I do not know that that many bars! But Reposado is not far from my place so I am in favour of that. I'm out of town for the weekend but I will call for a reservation on Monday.

atipofthehat

@phlox

I only mention Reposado because I know the owners, which can be a Help. As for noise, maybe start early when it's quieter and increase our volume as the evening goes on?

(Though if we start early, we will need snacks.)

redheaded&crazy

@atipofthehat ANy time we start, I will need snacks ... or do you mean we'll need to bring snacks? I can do that.

Lyesmith

@redheadedandcrazy I'm also a long-time Hairpin lurker and I'd love to go to a meetup!

phlox

@redheadedandcrazy OK, we've got a reservation at Reposado for 7.

wharrgarbl

The local blood bank has informed me that I will be losing a pint of A+ one way or another this weekend, so I guess I'm going to be spending Saturday morning watching a huge aquarium and asking for more apple juice.

NeverOddOrEven

@wharrgarbl Don't forget to feel pious! That's the best part about do-goodery. The legitimacy.

Coal Tar Epoxy

@wharrgarbl I parted with a pint of B+ the other day and have been posting daily pictures of the giant bruise it left me with. Which is probably a bad idea since I now have friends vowing to never donate blood. Whoops.

wharrgarbl

@The Angels Have the Phonebox The most painless donation I ever made left me with a whacking great bruise that took like a week to fade. Don't judge the blood-draw pain by the bruise, people! Judge it by the enormous coffee straw of a needle they jam straight into your arm in order to bleed you like a pig!

(Seriously, though, it saves lives, everyone who can should give at least once in a while.)

candybeans

@wharrgarbl know how you guiltlessly get out of giving blood for *eighteen years*? Visit a refugee camp. Comes with: raging case of 1st world guilt. Seems a shame to be keeping all this O+ to myself.

Mingus_Thurber

@wharrgarbl I have a serious question about this: I found out recently that I'm A+ rather than O+, as I had always thought I was. (Bad me, never having donated blood before.) Is A-pos in high demand? Should I be hieing myself hence to the Red Cross truck at every opportunity?

My best pal is O-neg, and boy does she get bugged.

MsChilePepper

@wharrgarbl I'm also A+, and I don't get bugged a lot. Haven't donated in a while, though. Guess I should make it a point to do that.

Coal Tar Epoxy

@Mingus_Thurber There is always a demand for blood of all types! The actual donation part only takes 5 minutes and like @wharrgarbl said, it's actually quite painless even if you're left with a great big honking bruise. And free cookies! Just make sure you're well hydrated. DO IT!

wharrgarbl

@Mingus_Thurber The way it seems to shake out is that A+ can only give to A+, so there's not the hella demand like there is for Os and rH-s, but there are a lot of us running around, so the odds that any given person who needs a transfusion or twenty is going to be A+ too are pretty high. I think they try to reserve the weird stuff and the universal stuff for people who actually need that stuff or emergency situations.

Craftastrophies

@wharrgarbl This reminded me that I can now give blood again. It's been on my to-do list for ages, now that I can, but I keep forgetting. Thanks!

Faintly Macabre

All I want for Christmas is a full-time job so I can spend the rest of the year buying myself and everyone I like presents! (Or move out, which is equally exciting...)

And I'm so excited about the overlap! I can finally have a Christmas party without feeling like a bad Jew!

BadWolf

@Faintly Macabre I am determined to find myself a sweet-smelling wreath this year, because it is the first year I don't have roommates on whom I can rely for a tree, and I can't seem to overcome the "bad Jew" feelings enough to buy one for myself. But they SMELL SO GOOD.

pterodactgirl

@Faintly Macabre The first part of your post is all I have wanted for a while now. A Christmas miracle?

Four Horsemeals of the Eggporkalypse

@BadWolf apparently there's such a thing as pine incense and you can get a little incense burner shaped like an adorable log cabin! nothing beats fresh obvi, but I've smelled some of this incense and it's pretty nice.

Craftastrophies

@Four Horsemeals of the Eggporkalypse Oh, I need this! I bought a tree in a pot but it's some different variety and it doesn't smell very strong. I need some pine essential oil or something. (do they make that??)

julia

Sewing machine. Bike pants. A higher paying more interesting job. But seriously you guys, I have it all.

oh, disaster

@julia Same. The job would be nice, as would a food processor to make hummus, but I'm doing pretty well.

Ophelia

@julia I think there's a used pair of bike shorts somewhere on the Hairpin if you want those.

julia

@Ophelia LOL. I think I can buy bike pants with my commuter checks, so seriously, I want for nothing (except that sewing machine). God my life is wonderful. How do I do it?

Jolie Kerr

@Ophelia Jeez, was just coming in here to be all "JUST DON'T BUY USED ONES OKAYYYYYY???"

I think I have PTSD from the used bike shorts.

Ophelia

@Jolie Kerr Yeah, that entire column probably should have been, "Get rid of your bike shorts, seriously, they are disgusting" and nothing else.

bookbike

@andrea disaster I don't know if this is what you're currently doing, but you can totes make hummus with a blender!

Faintly Macabre

Oh and I was JUST THINKING that the Hairpin should have open threads, considering everyone's love of commentjacking anyway! ESP!

cold unfeeling robot heart

Anyone have an idea for what I should get my brother for Christmas? He just graduated from college in May and is unemployed and living with Dad. Something to get him out of the house, like movie tickets, maybe?

Faintly Macabre

@cold unfeeling robot heart If he's at all arty, maybe a Holga? The camera itself is cheap, and if you get the 35mm kind, film and development don't cost much. I was totally unemployed for most of the summer, and getting out and taking pictures helped me stay sane.

Polina

@cold unfeeling robot heart Anything that he would feel guilty about spending the money on while being unemployed!

Lily Rowan

@Polina Yeah, I think movie tickets are good one on that front. A nice break from your real life.

Four Horsemeals of the Eggporkalypse

@cold unfeeling robot heart As a fellow unemployed May grad, yes, anything to get him out! Tickets to stuff, even gas money or public transit fare if Dad's not paying for that. Personally I'd love a gym membership as it gets me out of the house regularly and also makes up for never moving farther than my bed to the couch and back. But obviously that can be kind of a loaded gift if it's not specifically asked for....

angelinha

@Four Horsemeals of the Eggporkalypse Along the lines of public transit fare - train tickets to someplace his college friends live? My sister was unemployed for six months after she graduated and I think owes her sanity to weekend trips.

bangs
bangs

Trying to get a Vancouver pin up going for Saturday, but interest kind of petered out in the google group. Any takers???

missvancity

@Xaxa I have no free weekends till the New Year. I would be down for a school night event, or I could maybe do a weekend in January. ALL THE HOLIDAY PARTIES!

bangs
bangs

@missvancity I can do a week day too. I'm in town (somehow with no holiday parties) until the 21st. I'll be in town most of January, but have a bunch of important work things later in the month.

lora.bee

@Xaxa The google group just kind of died :( I am in town til next Saturday, so if there is one before then I'm in!

bangs
bangs

@lora.bee :( Looks like it's drinking alone for me this weekend.

redheaded&crazy

@Xaxa when I come to vancouver in february I will drink with you!

except really I'll be in whistler the whole time BUT if anybody from vancouver is also in whistler (Feb 4-12!!!! I know its ages away) then come drink with meeeeee

bangs
bangs

@redheadedandcrazy I've actually never been to Whistler, and I've also never done the Grouse Grind. I've lived here for 7 years....

lora.bee

@Xaxa Hairpin road trip to Whistler!

bangs
bangs

@lora.bee Yaaaaaaay!

BadWolf

Oh, my Friday night is going to be awesome. In that I am gearing up for a wild night writin' papers, and my cat just kicked over the coffee.

So, 'pinners. All that talk about saying the "love" thing last week, and whatever. Can I just put it in the note in his Christmas present? It's been...almost six months? And I've said it before, in the years we were friends before all this? But I am a big old coward.

His present is so awesome, though, I can't even.

Faintly Macabre

@BadWolf Is your name Natalie?

BadWolf

@Faintly Macabre It is not, no.

thenotestaken

@BadWolf if you feel it, do it!

BadWolf

@thenotestaken Right? That is the answer. I can see the look of abject terror on his face, and the way he will wear it for a week before miserably breaking up with me...but that is the answer.

Faintly Macabre

@BadWolf I'm guessing you haven't seen this movie?

ETA: I have no useful advice, so I make jokes, sorry!

thenotestaken

@BadWolf Aww muffin! Remember all the 'Pinner wisdom that saying it, even if you're not sure it'll be reciprocated, is just a nice thing to do? What is the present?? Something wearable I'm thinking?

BadWolf

@Faintly Macabre Ahaha, that is okay! Jokes = good! What is the movie?

BadWolf

@thenotestaken Dude. Duuuude. It is tickets to a Jeff Magnum show! And also a t-shirt that has a Victorian man on a bone-shaker saying, "Parkour to you!" on it, like Hannah Harto has been known to sport on "My Drunk Kitchen," because it cracked his shit up.

thenotestaken

@BadWolf Nice! That is an AWESOME present! I'm still struggling with my own boy-gifting dilemma, as you saw below :/

BadWolf

@thenotestaken Thanks! I am excited. Aw, I did see; I am uncrafty as hell, though, and don't know what to suggest. Except, I mean, I can suggest "not knitting," because knitting is just zero fun.

EpWs

@BadWolf Badass presents! Hooray! Yes, sneak that shit in there. Clearly, he will reciprocate because you are an awesome gifter.

BadWolf

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher Aw, thank you! You give the hope!

BadWolf

@Faintly Macabre @thenotestaken @The Everpresent Wordsnatcher It didn't matter, in the end; he dumped me. Relationships freak him out too much, or maybe he just thinks I can't compare to the sociopathic, evil ex, and can we just go back to being best friends right now, so he doesn't have to feel bad for treating me like shit.

I am so tired.

EpWs

@BadWolf That just sucks, I'm so sorry. He does not deserve the awesome presents. Big hugs!

thenotestaken

@BadWolf Oh my god, I'm so so sorry, what a bomb to drop. Take yourself and an awesome friend to the show instead, he isn't worthy of the awesome presents. Hairpin hugs all around!

Craftastrophies

@BadWolf Oh, baby! I am so late to this thread, but I just wanted to give you internet hugs and say I'm sorry. Did you tell him that it's hard to be best friends with someone who broke your heart? At least right away. Especially if they treated you like shit. I hope you are doing ok.

ejcsanfran

I am looking forward to The Feats of Strength and The Airing of Grievances.

cc
cc

@ejcsanfran ohhh, i need to put up my festivus pole. obvs!

ghechr

@ejcsanfran my sister is coming to visit me this year for Christmas. We love feats of strength. I've been working on my arm wrestling all year in anticipation.

Emby

All I want for Christmas is you.

emilylou

What I really want for Christmas is hella money & movers & a good writing job in the Austin-San Antonio area so I can fulfill my dream/new years resolution of finally moving out of Seattle and trying something completely different?

On a related note, Austin Pinners. Tell me if this is a good plan and tell me about the job market for someone in the social media/journalism/general writing field? Is it just as hard as Seattle? Probably?

PS: Seth Cohen is probably calling it a "true Christmukkah"! I have mentioned The OC so much in my comments this week, might as well keep the ball rolling!

melis

@emilylouise Maybe you have the Summer flu and you should take some Annabiotics.

melis

Alternately: Oy humbug.

emilylou

@melis It's best to sweat out the Summer flu... by doing lots of Yogalates.

melis

That's pretty minty of you, Dad.

noodge

i am shocked and awed by the level of ignorance in the populace, as shown by the facebook thread i saw today, lamenting flu vaccine requirements for school and work. people think vaccines:
a.) are a tool of corporate america to inject chemicals into you to control you with
b.) make you more sick than if you don't get it
c.) somehow make your immune system crippled
d.) are unnatural, and that we should let our bodies go back to their "natural ability to heal" (which I suppose means letting 1/3 of our children die from flu, measles, diptheria, etc etc)

i know the "mandatory" part of flu vaccines is icky to a lot of people, but at least get educated on what they do! don't spout nonsense! and in my logical, calm, information i provided, i got a "whew! it's clear there are a lot of viewpoints on vaccines!" and i'm like "it's not a viewpoint! it's science/medicine!!"

gar. someone tell me i'm not insane for feeling despondent about people?

ETA: is it possible to threadjack an open thread? i feel like i just did that.
ETA2: jeez, i hope this doesn't open a can of worms...

area@twitter

@teenie For what it's worth, I work in healthcare, and owe my continued existence on this plane to advanced medicine. Having said that: I think that there are some good and interesting viewpoints on mandatory vaccination that unfortunately get drowned out by conspiracy theories and terrible logic. It's similar how I feel about PETA. (I see you your threadjack and I RAISE you. BAM.)

redheaded&crazy

@teenie oh it's OPENED a can of worms!

A. It's a scientific fact that vaccines cause autism.

B. That's why I make sure to get a kid with chickenpox to lick a lollipop, then I have my kid eat the lollipop, then hey presto! no chickenpox for my kid PLUS no hocus pocus vaccines.

area@twitter

@redheadedandcrazy Did you know that if you carry a live Jenny McCarthy around your neck, it will ward away the evil vapours that enter the soul and cause illness?

Porn Peddler

@teenie I depend on so much modern medicine that people think is icky and I want to scream almost every time it comes up. I have a co-worker that I have a problem taking seriously because she thinks vaccines cause autism and aspergers. Girl, no.

Ophelia

@area@twitter fair, but I think the public health outcome outweighs personal preference here - without "herd" immunity to protect the people who can't be vaccinated for whatever reason, we'd have a hard time eradicating diseases that legit used to kill/maim lots of people.

redheaded&crazy

@Third Wave Housewife In all seriousness, my biggest issue is not the ignorance but the selfishness. You are depending on other people to get their kids vaccinated so that these insane diseases we no longer have to worry about don't resurface. So it's okay for other people to (according to your ignorant views) endanger their children with vaccines as long as you don't have to do anything to your precious ray of sunshine?

Fucking. IDIOTS.

Lily Rowan

@area@twitter Hee.

I got into so many arguments about vaccines a couple of years ago that I had to start getting a flu shot for the first time in my life, just so I could walk the talk.....

noodge

@teenie it's just this whole Fox news method of having huge opinions and trying to convert people to these opinions that are completely based on nonsense and ignore factual science. you know, just because you say the sky is pink, and you say it over and over, and you say it really loudly, doesn't mean the sky is pink!!!

area@twitter

@Ophelia Oh yeah, concur- particularly if you're making healthcare decisions for a minor, and particularly if the risks of vaccination are substantially outweighed by the benefits, which the VAST majority of the time they are.

area@twitter

@teenie "in my logical, calm, information i provided, i got a "whew! it's clear there are a lot of viewpoints on vaccines!" and i'm like "it's not a viewpoint! it's science/medicine!!" "
Christ. I've had this 'discussion' on Facebook (my first mistake!) with both evolutionary theory and birth control and it is probably the closest I have ever come to stroking out from sheer undiluted rage.

noodge

@area@twitter so glad i'm not alone... uuuggghhhh

Don
Don

@teenie But.. I've never had the flu or a flu shot. ?

Polina

@all Guys. To be honest I hadn't given this too much thought until recently, but now it makes me really mad too. There was a big fight in my family over the flu vaccine because there's a person amongst us with a weakened immune system and another person was refusing it. Our own damn family. We need to protect each other!

melis

I'll just leave this here.

melis

"Hear you've got a tricky one."

"Nothing we can't handle. Get me some wolf's bane, also known as monk's hood, in here! And a whole tray of flower remedies!"

"Oh God, his chakras are fading. He'll need some crystals."

"Nurse! Fetch me some purple-tinted quartz!"

"Do you think that's wise?"

"Damnit, you're right, make that aquamarine quartz."

"Good call."

"Okay, he's stabilising. Now, does anybody know what sort of car hit him?"

"Blue Ford Mondeo apparently."

"Right, get me a bit of Blue Ford Mondeo, put it in water, shake it, dilute it, shake it again, dilute it again, do some more shaking, dilute it some more, then put three drops on his tongue. If that doesn't cure him, I don't know what will."

EpWs

@area@twitter I try not to talk much on Facebook anymore. I'm mostly just posting videos of puppies.

Also, people, talk to me here: I rarely get the flu (KNOCKING ON SO MUCH WOOD), and don't have people with weakened immune systems around, and am terrified of needles, and my mom typically has poor reactions to flu shots. Should I get one? Tell me all the things!

area@twitter

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher I would say still yes, just because if you do get the flu, you will likely miss enormous amounts of work/school, probably have to go to the doctor at least once, and feel like absolute and utter shit for, oh, at least three days. Probably more like a week. And that's if you don't have any complications (pneumonia, bronchitis, sinus infection). No es bueno.
You can get the nasal spray vaccine if you are completely and totally freaked out by needles.
What kind of bad reactions does your mom have?

EpWs

@area@twitter Nothing terrible, but usually several days' to a week's worth of general malaise--you know, where you feel shitty and under the weather, but not enough that you can justify missing work or school?

ELECTROMAGNETIC CHAOS

@teenie: Just saw this. You have all my thumbs up. I don't know how flu vaccine volunteers/givers have the zen/clarity/peace/superpowers to not choke people to death who undoubtedly approach them with that sad, fearful nonsense.

sandwiches

@teenie MARRY ME! I, uh, got into a very polite argument on Friendface earlier today with an acquaintance of my bf's who "just couldn't understand why I let other people's opinions (about vaccines/ammo/food hoarding/private militias) make me angry/have power over me." I did not drive to his home to murder him while screaming "Choke on your sleep stones, you woman-hating juicebox!" but it was very difficult. This juicebox regularly posts about how vaccines are bad despite knowing that I am severely immunocompromised & rely on herd immunity to survive, and used to get up off the couch, go to the fridge, make sure there were sandwich fixings, go back to the couch, and ask his girlfriend to make him a sandwich, so I may have some barely-repressed anger issues with him anyway?

sandwiches

@everyone I love everyone in this bar!!!

area@twitter

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher I- hmm. I can see why you're hesitant. I would still recommend getting the shot, but if you decided not to I would completely understand why. (For what it's worth, it's not unusual for me to get that period of feeling crappy after the shot, but that didn't happen AT ALL this year. I was happily surprised.) If you DO decide to get the flu shot, maybe you can think of it as a deposit in your karma bank- a way of helping to protect all those kids and grandparents and really sick folks among us who rely on herd immunity to stay healthy.

@sandwiches I love everyone in this bar too. And that guy sounds like a champion dick. Seriously, you should submit him to a contest somewhere. Or play "Dick Bingo" with his pronouncements on The Facebook.

EpWs

@area@twitter True enough! Herd immunity for the win.

Also, can we make a Juicebox Bingo card?

atipofthehat

@teenie

Science! But good science continues to ask questions.

area@twitter

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher YES. I would LOVE Juicebox Bingo cards.

Megasus

@teenie My ex's 13 year old sister HAS NEVER BEEN VACCINATED for this reason.

Craftastrophies

@atipofthehat Part of the thing that makes me so angry with arguments like this is that it so polarises people that they feel that they CAN'T ask questions. If the argument is vaccines: good or bad? and you are on the 'good' side, there's little room for nuance and questioning. If you're fighting with facts against stubbornly ignorant opinion, it's really tempting to just skip the facts that don't suit your argument 100%. After all, they are! Baby steps, right? But no, that compromises your argument even more. The phrase 'you're entitled to your own opinion, not your own facts' cuts both ways.

And the selfish thing. Ugh! I know someone who is a training to be a midwife and was required to do placement in a hospital, but couldn't because she'd never been immunised. She was outraged. But... she's in a hospital! With sick babies! It's one thing to be privately selfish, another to be in a caring position of authority and not do everything you can to protect others.

Craftastrophies

@melis The bloopers for that are pretty great, too.

area@twitter

So this was an interesting week that could have been really difficult? But instead was actually pretty good. So I'm going to celebrate that! And also celebrate all you excellent 'Pinners! I want us to live in a huge apartment block together and have drunken crafting sessions with Qream bottles in the tea room.

Also a question: In-law present. Has to fit on the plane back home. I'm told they both like golf. Thoughts?

travelmugs

@area@twitter Olive oil. Always the olive oil. Everybody likes it; nobody wants to spend money on it. People who cook a lot cook with it; people who don't cook a lot dip bread in it.

EpWs

@travelmugs FUCKING BRILLIANT.

area@twitter

@travelmugs Delicious.

Inkling

@travelmugs
This might be out of touch, but would they be allowed to fly that much liquid back home? Are we still doing that on airlines?

EpWs

@Inkcrafter I think you'd probably be okay if you checked it? Maybe? I haven't flown in a while.

area@twitter

@everyone Word is now that they appreciate the thought but say "please, no presents". So. I'm going to take them at their word and buy MYSELF some nice olive oil.

EpWs

@area@twitter This is maybe the best idea.

travelmugs

@area@twitter The phrase "You don't need to get me a present," is the world's best present you can give someone who doesn't know you well. @everyone, You can fly with olive oil, wine, other liquids. They just need to be in your checked baggage.

New Hoarder

@area@twitter When to ABC/ liquor store on Friday and my friend noticed the Qream bottle and was all "Oooooh!" and I yanked her away and maybe frightened her with "NOOOOONONONO IT'S THE DEVIL'S JUICE NODONTDOIT." It was a fun trip!

JessicaLovejoy

ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS REMUS LUPIN.

BTW, has anyone seen The Special Relationship, about Tony Blair and Bill Clinton? I watched it for the first time last night (if I watch a movie with British accents before bed, I always have nice dreams. Last night was no exception, I DREAMT ABOUT WHAT I WANT FOR XMAS!) and it was totally a movie about two boys in love. I want to talk to someone else about how in love they were. <3

melis

Mm, why would you post a picture that is clearly a picture of the tree from Pan's Labyrinth in an obvious and calculated attempt to fill me with despair?

melis

BECAUSE THE LITTLE GIRL JUST IMAGINES EVERYTHING AND THEN SHE DIES AND THEN NOTHING

frigwiggin

@melis But she's una princesa! With her sweet little Castilian lisp!

Ophelia

@figwiggin Her sweet little lisp that WON'T SAVE HER.

Craftastrophies

@Ophelia NO BUT SHE'S GOING HOME!

Dancercise

We discussed this in the AaCP yesterday, but topping my list this year is a handheld vacuum cleaner. Second is stuff for baking. It's disgraceful that I don't have a loaf pan or a muffin pan. I wish to fix this.

... This list makes me sound like a '50s housewife.

Ophelia

@Dancersize Yeah. My mom was kind of horrified that I asked for a vacuum cleaner last year, but she just clarified, in really big letters on the tag, that it was for both me and my husband to use. I <3 my mom.

emilylou

I asked for a dustbuster last year. My parents made fun of me, but I'll tell ya what, it sure does come in handy!

hairspin

@Dancersize HaHa When I was 14 I asked for a dustbuster for my birthday. My parents thought I was crazy, but I was not! It was amazing!!

The Lady of Shalott

@emilylouise One year I asked for a broom-vac and it was totally the best gift I got that year.

cc
cc

@Dancersize my husband bought me a hand mixer for valentines day, along with a long explanation of It's Not What You Think It Means But I Know You Bake A Lot And Need A Mixer So Here And Also Some Jewelry. he got away with it, and i can mix like the wind now.

heyladies

@emilylouise I have gone without a blender for way too long b/c I broke my last one. Somehow I can't muster up the will to buy another, much as I want one. Perfect present. And nice vacuums are about the most useful thing ever.

wharrgarbl

@Ophelia Should've asked for a roomba.

Ophelia

@wharrgarbl yeah, that would have had the added benefit of also entertaining my dog. Sigh. 20/20 hindsight and all that.

Dancercise

@Ophelia Plus, DJ Roomba.

redheaded&crazy

@Dancersize It's dual bag!

ugh that commerical is actually super problematic and offensive.

but "it's DUAL BAG!" still makes me laugh.

wharrgarbl

@Ophelia I asked for a roomba for one Christmas (The Best Time I Never Vacuumed Again), and you could see everyone thinking very, very hard about how nice it would be to have a little robot do all the vacuuming for you. They won't break down and spend the money on themselves, though, so we're probably just going to buy them for each other over the span of the next decade.

bangs
bangs

@wharrgarbl I want a Roomba so much. Mostly I just want to own a robot, but I aso hate to sweep the floor.

wharrgarbl

@Xaxa They are the best. They get All the Dirt from Everywhere and put it in a little cup for you so that you can just throw it away. You will be simultaneously pleased and horrified by the amount of dirt the roomba will find on what looks like a clean floor.

Polina

@wharrgarbl Tina Fey has ruined me and I'm always accidentally calling it a woomba much to EVERYONE'S GREAT DELIGHT.

leonstj

@wharrgarbl - Man now I really want a Roomba (I live literally about 20 ft from the BQE on the 2nd floor, so anytime my windows are open (which is year round because my heat is BLAZING and my apartment is tiny) there is black soot everywhere) but it turns out from a just-now Amazon check that robotic servants are incredibly expensive.

bangs
bangs

@wharrgarbl So I will be horrified by the amount of dirt it picks off of my clearly not clean floor?

emilylou

@all: DJ ROOMBA!!!!!!!!!

@The Lady of Shalott I don't even know what a broom-vac is, but I think I'm automatically placing it on my Christmas list?

IN OTHER NEWS (and more thread-jacking) HOW WAS YOUR DATE? If you talked about it anywhere yesterday I missed it cause I wasn't online!

Hellcat

@Dancersize A couple of Christmases ago, my BF got me the Shark handheld steam-cleaner, and my friend's mom (who was a wee bit tipsy, and whom I've known since I was 8 but my BF was just meeting for the first time) told him I deserved better and that was not a very romantic gift, while he sat there not knowing how to respond! I calmed her down by swearing up and down that I wanted it -- and I did! -- and that it was too romantic because he only picked it because he knew I wanted it.

I made my parents buy me a Dirt Devil when I was in high school. People thought I was weird for that but when I took it to college with me, everyone on my floor in the dorm always wanted to borrow it, so I guess I was cool in a strange, really specific way maybe.

The Lady of Shalott

@emilylouise Oh, I think normal people refer to it as a stick vacuum? You know, it's a really light vacuum like this one that you can just hang up on the wall when you're done or whatever.

My date actually went really well!!!! I don't know if the guy is like, Long Term Prospect material or anything, but frankly I don't care because hopefully I'm moving away in a few months. Anyhow, we have semi-concrete plans to hang out in January when we get back from visiting our respective homeplaces, and I hope that by "hang out" he means...you know, hanging out in the Biblical sense. Fingers crossed!

It was much an improvement over the last date I went on, that was so boring that I had to have my BFF rescue me with a fake emergency phone call, and over the one before that, where the guy creeped me out A LOT.

emilylou

@The Lady of Shalott I'm glad it went well! Who cares if he's a LTP if you're moving (ooh, where are you trying to move?). Yeah, I mean "hanging out" pretty much means banging? They should call it banging out probably.

I've never done the BFF emergency fake call, but I once hid in a bathroom stall and called my BFF to physically COME TO THE BAR to "run into" me and rescue me, it was that bad. Ohhhh dating. Why.

The Lady of Shalott

@emilylouise If I get into the PhD program I'm dying to get into, I'm moving to Vancouver! Where I will immediately convene a Vancouver Pinup, obvs.

Anyhow, this date went much more smoothly. I would have probably stayed longer if I wasn't reliant on the terrible bus system to get home and also if I didn't have a shit ton of papers to mark this week. But luckily it didn't necessitate fake calls. My emergency text said something like "SOS PLZ CALL ME RIGHTNOW" and five minutes later she called saying "So, yes, this is....the hospital, and your brother's penis got caught in the toaster, can you come and get him?"

EpWs

@The Lady of Shalott YAY good date!
@emilylouise Patent "banging out" immediately.
@everyone else I totally want a Roomba, but then I look at the price and go "Hrmmmm."
@Dancersize GET THEE TO A HOMEGOODS, WOMAN. Seriously, that place is the best.

bangs
bangs

@The Lady of Shalott We need bodies (preferably alive) for a Vancouver pinup. My fingers are crossed for you.

emilylou

@The Lady of Shalott From now on, when I have a bad date, I'm going to call it a Penis Toaster.

"So Emily, how was that date with that dude?"
"Oh.... unfortunately, pretty much a Penis Toaster. Oh well."

I hope you get into your grad program!! Vancouver is a pretty badass city!

The Lady of Shalott

@Xaxa @emilylouise Thanks guys! I hope so too. I am petrified with waiting. If I do get in I will pitch a "The Best Time I Started A PhD Program" and if I don't it will be "The Best Time I Fell Down Crying When I Got the Mail"

EpWs

@The Lady of Shalott Waiting is the worst. Do you know when you should be hearing from them?

The Lady of Shalott

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher Probably not for some time. The deadline isn't until January, and I haven't yet submitted my writing sample (mostly because I can't figure out what 50 pages of my thesis are the best/most analytical/show off my research best/5 million other considerations), so the very very very earliest I could even CONSIDER hearing back would be probably mid-February.

Cue sobbing. And drinking. Heavily.

wharrgarbl

@Xaxa Yes, but also very pleased because it isn't there anymore!

@leon.saintjean The baseline models--which they do not appear to make anymore--were less than $200 new, so you can find them for less than that used off Craigslist sometimes. I saw a similarly-priced knock-off in (I think) Target a few weeks ago labeled like "Robot Vacuum" or something similar, so it appears that they no longer need to be literal Roombas. I think they get to be more expensive than they strictly should be on account of decent real do-it-all-yourself vacuums costing so much.

EpWs

@The Lady of Shalott Writing samples and personal statements are THE WORST. Applying to/waiting for responses from a Master's program was the most stressful experience of my life, I've got to imagine it's worse for PhD programs. Be strong! Drink some Qream.

The Lady of Shalott

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher Oh dear! Waiting to hear back from Master's applications was TERRIBLE. So terrible. I cried. A lot. Also I have (figuratively) put all my eggs in one basket here and don't have a fallback plan, so....Qream, yes.

EpWs

@The Lady of Shalott I also cried, a lot, and then my immune system said "Fuck it, I'm out" and then I got all virusy and terrible and then I ended up having to have a chunk of my cervix removed with a laser. It wasn't a good six months.
BUT. Things are better now. I have one semester left of grad school (ONE!) and then begins the "Oh please let me get a job, oh please, oh please" bargaining with the universe. I am not worrying about that now. I am worrying about snow globes. It's all good.

The Lady of Shalott

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher Congrats! I also have one semester left in which to finish writing and defend my thesis. I am choosing to focus on that rather than The Wide World of Post-Master's Life. Because....petrified.

Grad school has given me all kinds of bizarre stress-related ailments. Right now it's persistent daily headaches. Before this it was weird patches of dry irritated skin on my eyelids and all over my body. Breakouts of every size and shape. WHY.

EpWs

@The Lady of Shalott My program has us writing and defending our theses while still taking classes. Obviously I cannot write a thesis whilst taking four classes and working, so my job over break is to get a draft written. I foresee many sleepless nights this holiday season.

I have the dry irritated eyelid skin thing going on now! Also random bumpy rashes on my neck and across my face that kind of comes and goes. The dermatologist said that the first ailment was eczema (ew) and the second is something with a ridiculous name that I can do nothing about. Blerg. I am ready for this phase of my life to be over...just as long as the next phase of my life includes gainful employment.

Grad student solidarity!

The Lady of Shalott

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher Oh geez, really? That sounds impossible. How long is your thesis intended to be? I ask because my program is an 20-month intensive program intended for students going forward to doctoral studies and therefore includes classwork, a TA component, a research term, blah blah blah. I'm trying desperately to keep my thesis under 100 pages because any longer and it gets hard to find an external, you know? But my adviser is like "Well, you have probably 150 pages worth of material" and...screaming.

OMG really? Dry irritated eyelid skin is a REAL THING? Holy crap, I feel so much LESS ALONE now!!!

EpWs

@The Lady of Shalott I'm shooting for 150 pages...hopefully INCLUDING pictures, because dear god. However, I've also set myself a goal of seven pages a day for three weeks over break, and that'll get me to nearly 150 pages of text. I'm assuming I will fail at that but will probably end up with 100-ish pages of text, which is good and what I'm shooting for. I have at least that much material (I think). Tales are told in our program of the guy whose thesis was 90 pages long and 60 of it was pictures...he did not do well. (Btw: our program is a terminal master's, so things are a little different, maybe? By the end, mine will have turned out to be four semesters of classes, concurrent with a year of non-academic RA work outside of class (aka an internship that pays tuition HOLLA), and a thesis that will, with any luck at all, be written by and defended this spring. I am exhausted already.

And I am assuming the eyelid nonsense is a real thing because I HAVE IT and I HATE IT and now I feel like I can't wear much in the way of eye makeup because it gets all funky on those patches. Blegh.

bangs
bangs

@The Lady of Shalott I lost my fingerprints when I did my honours thesis. And that's undergrad! I imagine if I went to grad school all of my skin would fall off in protest.

The Lady of Shalott

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher I know that requirements and such can vary SO wildly (i.e., I know a girl who wrote a 30-page Master's thesis in English....yeah) that it's really not even a good way to judge. I think I'm going to have about four chapters of content (seven chapters in total), and I'm 2/4 (3/7) right now. So I'm in OK shape as long as I get at least one chapter completed over Christmas break, which should be loads of fun. Then January to finish up and start revisions! Well, continue--I've already revised one chapter.

Sorry, everyone else who posted in this thread and didn't want to hear bitching about grad school!

EpWs

@The Lady of Shalott Good luck!

Sorry everyone from me too! However, good thread to read if you want to convince yourself to not go to grad school ever. Erp.

BadWolf

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher @The Lady of Shalott I am so late to the suffering grad student party! But I wanted to say ZOMG FUCK THIS from the all-night diner where I am mainlining horrendous coffee and surrounded by crazy people and STILL barely begun on the stupid steamship paper. I have not looked at my thesis since October, but it is pretty much the only thing I am allowed to do over break, so yay? My face is a kind of stress-blotchy it hasn't been since 6th grade. Want to cry/eat more fries. You both have my sympathy and cyber-hugs!

EpWs

@BadWolf Aww, hugs to you too! When is this steamship nonsense due?

BadWolf

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher Monday. But it is my advisor's class, and I very, very, very much don't want to bollocks it up. Holy god, seven pages a day over break? I need a schedule like that. Both for real and in the "...like I need a hole in the head" sense. Hang in there, lady!

EpWs

@BadWolf I have a couple things in place to make sure it has some possible chance of happening.
Point the first: Break is four weeks long, which means I get seven off-days.
Point the second: I am planning on making a very large, poster-sized chart and buying some kickass awesome sparkly gold star stickers. I am also planning on a mean rewards system every 25 pages. WE SHALL SEE.

The Lady of Shalott

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher On the off chance that anyone in grad school is poking around on the Internet instead of working, like a sensible student:

ARRRRGHGGHGH I DON'T FIT IN WITH ANYONE IN MY PROGRAM. Seriously, my program is really small, only about a dozen people, and I do not fit in with them AT ALL. Most of them are from the Maritimes and never want to live anywhere BUT the Maritimes, and I and another girl are the ONLY ONES who are not married, engaged, or in a Serious Cohabitating Relationship. For serious. ANOTHER girl just got engaged this weekend (despite the fact that she's already common-law/domestic partnership/civil unioned with this guy, she's still going to expect cards and "engagement gifts" and complain about it). Because apparently if you're not Committed by Age 24 then you're, you know, weird. (These are the same people who call me a slut behind my back.) I did not realize that I was catapulting myself into a nest of Judgy People!!!

The work I'm doing is hard, but seriously not impossible. It's THE PEOPLE and WHERE I LIVE that I hate.

social theory

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher (and all the other grad students)--solidarity! and good on you for coming up with the reward system! mine includes cheetos (as many as i want!), coffee, and hot showers.

AniaGosia

@The Lady of Shalott I'm doing a PhD at a Major Catholic University so I totally know what you mean about not fitting in! I reacted by avoiding grad student social life in favor of hanging out with the townies ... And then I went and married one so I am Stuck Here Forever!! Fingers crossed that you get in to the program in Vancouver!!

EpWs

@The Lady of Shalott GIRL I FEEL YOU. I have five classmates; they are all pretty much insufferable. I am ready to choke a bitch.
@social theory "Rewards systems that involve hot showers"=grad school summed up.
@all my grad students out there--I have been writing for five hours. I am going to continue to write until I collapse on top of my notes tonight, then wake up in the morning and write more. This isn't even my thesis, it's a take-home final. 12 pages in and no end in sight. Please someone shoot me?

thenotestaken

I'm having my annual Chanukah party this Saturday (I'll be going back to my parent's house before actual Chanukah starts--first time in four years that I'll be home for it, yay!). Basically I make a million latkes and my aunt's kugel and everyone gets drunk and makes up their own dreidel games.

My wishlist is basically 1Q84 and a good chef's knife! Also my beau requested something handmade as he always does despite me being the least crafty person ever. I've already done the ceramic painting thing two years in a row for him, I need something new and easy! Any ideas?!

BadWolf

@thenotestaken OOhh, will you share your latke recipe? I had way too much interaction with my dad at Thanksgiving to call him for his, and I have to represent at my friends' upcoming All Goy Except BadWolf Holiday Brunch.

thenotestaken

@BadWolf My dad always used the one from this article (the Make-Ahead one) and I do the same: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2001/12/02/CM45223.DTL

They've always turned out great for me! REPRESENT!

travelmugs

@thenotestaken I'm not at all crafty either, but I make marble magnets all the time. You could use cute inside jokes/things he likes for the photos under them:
http://www.notmartha.org/tomake/marblemagnets/

BadWolf

@thenotestaken W00T, thankee! These look awesome. Yay, symbolic fried foods!

Mariajoseh

I work in the food insustry. My mom (who sells baked goods) warned me that I'd be too stressed out to enjoy Christmas this year. She was right. I don't have energy to plan the 500 parties my friends want to organize, so I ended up telling them tu set everything up and I'll pay my part, they seemed relieved to know that they don't have to deal with my grupy self anymore. I'm pretending that the real holiday is my birthday (Jan 8th!), when I'll get 3 days off to visit my bestie in Mexico City.

Mariajoseh

@Mariajoseh also, I can buy everything on my wishlist this year! for myself, with my money! and I graduated college last year! Isn't it awesome?

Dorothea

I HATE FINALS AND LAW SCHOOL AND SECURITIES REGULATION

BadWolf

@blahstudent I HATE FINALS AND HISTORY AND STEAM-BOATS EMPATHY SCREAM

Dorothea

@BadWolF AAAAAGHHHHHHGHGHGHGH!

(but how can you hate steam-boats? steam-boats take you places, securities regulations only make grown men cry.)

The Lady of Shalott

@blahstudent I, too, am curious about steamboat hate.

BadWolf

@blahstudent @The Lady of Shalott Actually, I love steam-boats. I love historic ships generally! But I am So Not Psyched to spend tonight writing about one. I could be out! I could be SLEEPING!

Historic ships are, probably, an awful lot more fun than securities regulations, those sound horrendous. At least I get to make jokes about thrusting pistons and vibrating crankshafts and the 24" stroke.

parla

@blahstudent YES. PREACH. DOWN WITH FINALS. up wit Qream and dj roomba as soon as I'm done (which will be never)

AnnPerkins

@contrary Last night on Parks and Rec (shout out to DJ roomba) there were bottles of Qream in Dennis feinstien's office. So watch that now that you're done with finals

EpWs

@BadWolf I HATE FINALS AND POWERPOINT. AND MAKING POSTERS IN POWERPOINT WTF.

parla

@AnnPerkins ANN PERKINS! You *lit-trally* just missed me talking about that very thing in a threadjack on the Michelle Bachman Prom Situation post! I would have saved it for open thread if I knew!

QuiteAmiable

All I want for Christmas is for it to be over already.

Wondajules

I'VE BEEN WAITING FOR AN OPEN THREAD FOR WEEKS NOW!!! Guys! I need to talk about Once Upon A Time! It's SOOOOOOOOOOOO terrible! And I can't stop! It's awful and wonderful and no one else gets it! I'm sorry for all of the exclamation points but CLEARLY I have many emotions that cannot be fully expressed. Please...someone talk about horrible ABC fairy tale dramas with me?

JessicaLovejoy

@Wondajules NO SPOILERS FOR LAST WEEK. I AM NOT CAUGHT UP.

But it owns me. And that thing where the mayor grabs Emma before she want down into the tunnels? Are we supposed to be shipping them now? Because I think I am.

EVIL QUEENS FOREEVVVEERRRRR

Wondajules

@JessicaLovejoy Ohmygosh. Last weeks was so good. Catch up immediately. The graphics are, well, stellar. And. Ugh. Really. I can't get enough. And WHAT THE HELL is going on with the Mayor and the Sheriff? What is that? Also Rumpelstiltskin may be the most absurd villain ever. That little head thing when he says "all magic has a price" makes me want to throw large heavy objects at the television...but then I wouldn't be able to watch OUAT anymore and then what would I doooooooo? So many feelings.

JessicaLovejoy

@Wondajules The head thing? THE FINGER THING!

lisma

@Wondajules I watch it and love it every week.
So do the Mayor and Mr. Rumplestiltskin know they are not really from there?

Porporina

@Wondajules I will as soon as I catch up on the last two episodes!!!! So many feelings and exclamation points!!! Also Grimm? Can we talk about that too because it is also terrible and wonderful but in a completely different way!

Wondajules

@JessicaLovejoy THE HEAD THING AND THE FINGER THING!! Why is he always standing with his hands in weird positions?? And the whole Jiminy Cricket thing smells foul. And did you hear them call the dalmatian Pongo? Since when is 101 Dalmatians a fairy tale??

Coal Tar Epoxy

@ginalouise It feels like Rumplestiltskin knows, that look he gave when Prince Charming said he recognized stuff in the shop seemed like he knew what was up.

Wondajules

@Porporina yes! I can't quit EITHER OF THEM! Grimm was back last night after stupid Whitney and I'm sadly so excited to watch... Grimm is less terrible, I feel, because it's so pretty. But god the name for the things is so awful. Ugh. It's all so wonderfully terrible.

And @ginalouise, I think Rumpelstiltskin may but I don't think the Mayor does. I don't know. The whole thing is so absurd. I love The Hairpin.

Wondajules

@Wondajules Apparently I am so excited to talk about Fairy Tales that my grammar has become entirely non-existent. This illustrates the depth of my feelings on the subject.

lisma

@Wondajules I think the kid is annoying but I think it is more annoying that his biological mother always calls him Kid.

Did it bother anyone else that Cinderella has such an obvious and bad spray tan?

wharrgarbl

@Porporina Grimm is hilarious. I cannot stop meta-plotting that show. "Aunt Marie never told you about any of this because you're terrible at everything. You're not even a good cop! You're the sort of cop who manages to turn a raid on an empty house into an officers-down situation by your absolute inability to follow even the most bog-standard procedure!"

Wondajules

@wharrgarbl YES. Also, in what world does the one guy that can see the monsters get all of the cases where people are killed by monsters? And the bear storyline?? I just. I can't. It's all too much. And yet...and yet...here I sit watching last night's episode.

Porporina

@Wondajules @wharrgarbl he is the worst cop ever! Ugh! That show! So good/bad!

Katimski

@Wondajules I heard Disney allowed OUAT to use their catalog of characters (Maleficent appears in one of the episodes). I think the Pongo thing might have been a little nod to the people at Disney?

I know too much about this show. :/

wharrgarbl

@Porporina He is! Even in situations where there will be no awkwardness whatsoever in calling for back-up, and they really need back-up, does he call for back-up? He does not. It is beyond ridiculous.

@Wondajules My tune-in slogan is "Let's watch Det. Grimm and his friends make poor decisions!" I think the implication might be that everyone is always killed by monsters? And only he's closing the murder cases in that city? God only knows how the theft squad is making out, because it's all elves and brownies and a convenient excuse to jail minorities who did nothing from hell to breakfast over there. All the kidnapping cases? Wind up in Storybrooke.

RK Fire

The true choice is mulled cider spiked with bourbon!

My wish list is as follows:
-a lever powerlifting belt that is 3 inches wide (most are 4 inches for dudes, not 5'2" tall women OR they are bench press belts that are 2 inches thick)
-another bookcase
-all the time in the world to play Skyrim
-all of the sleep in the world
-my husband's ankle/leg to recover quickly so he can run outside again. man, I just made him sound like a sick pet. :(

For you Skyrim-playing hairpinners who like to procrastinate: have you seen/read Prequel yet? It makes me want to really make a kittycatcat character now. Some reason I want to name her Iona [some Japanese family name].

SBGBlogs

@RK Fire HELLO NEW FRIEND. I loved video games as a kid and dove back into them in high school and then nothing for all of college/ever until in an effort to let me be involved in his gaming, my boyfriend started having me play shit with him. Then he bought Skyrim.

So can I say to you that even though it's been a few weeks, I'm still no less amazed by HOW MUCH I LOVE MY HORSE? IT'S A LOT.

I also can't play the scary parts by myself because I get scared and I had this really hilarious glitch in the game and only you understand anything I am saying right now.

[Skyrim-jacking]

Also, I almost asked for underwear for Christmas because I find buying it tedious and I never want to do it.

RK Fire

@SBGBlogs: HI THERE!

Seriously, I've been talking about Skyrim on here whenever an open thread as much as possible. There are other people playing on here.

I don't have a horse! Is it worth it? I mostly like running everywhere and picking the herbs and I worry about missing out on that if I'm on a horse.

Also, do not play the Abandoned House quest in Markarth if scary things scare you! Just.. do not.

I had a great glitch last night where there were TWO Louis Letrushes by the Whiterun Stables last night. One of them only had his upper body sticking out of the ground. My husband egged me on to attack one of them, so I attacked the one that seemed to be stuck in the ground and the attack seemed to motivate him to leave the ground and run away from me! and then he ran back to stand by his doppleganger.

Truly it is a wondrous game. I'm working on getting Mehrune's Razor right now.

RK Fire

@RK Fire: ALSO, dear hairpinners: please know that I got a mole removed last Friday and I was informed today that it was not cancerous or in any way malignant! HUZZAH!

Furthermore, I learned that I can get blue moles, although my dermatologist did not reassure me of this fact before she removed it last Friday. Grrr.

Cawendaw

@RK Fire Prequel! I don't play Skyrim and didn't play Oblivion and remember barely anything about playing Morrowind way back in the dawn of time, but I love Prequel! I love how relatively low-stakes everything is (by RPG standards) but it still manages to be tense and suspenseful (the dinner party!).
Also, happy benevolent mole day!

EpWs

@RK Fire Benevolent Mole Day indeed! This is happy happy news!
Quasi-related, I got a letter a few weeks ago from my gyno with pap results confirming that I have been abnormal-cell free for A WHOLE YEAR NOW. Can we have an "Our Bodies Are Not/No Longer Trying To Kill Us Party"?

Ophelia

Some guys are selling christmas trees across the street from my apt, and they have christmas music on - which means I am mentally constructing a list of the worst songs so far today. These include:
- The Christmas Shoes (although I have already dealt with that)
- Wonderful Christmas Time
- Mary's Boy Child (which, while it is objectively bad, I kind of like, even though "Boney M" makes me laugh)
- Last Christmas

cc
cc

@Ophelia the dollar store near me just started playing classical music with "merry christmas" sung over and over on top of it. i don't even think they're trying anymore.

heyladies

@Ophelia Not Last Christmas! Unless it is a cover of Last Christmas, in which case beat it with a bat.

Ophelia

@cc The only way that could be better is if it was karaoke.

dj pomegranate

@Ophelia AGREE to all these. They are all terrible and make the baby Jesus cry.

area@twitter

@Ophelia Has anyone here heard "Dear Mister Jesus"? I heard it on a Christmas radio station years ago and I couldn't turn it off. Couldn't believe it was real and not some elaborate prank.

Ophelia

@area@twitter I can't even!!

missvancity

@area@twitter Christmas radio stations are a thing?!

lisma

@Ophelia Ah, at an old job I had to listen to the same Christmas Muzak station all day. The Destiny's Child Little Drummer Boy was particularly painful.

SBGBlogs

@Ophelia Patton Oswalt's rant about "Christmas Shoes" is the best thing ever!! SERIOUSLY.

Four Horsemeals of the Eggporkalypse

@Ophelia "Santa Baby" is my personal Worst Christmas Song.

BadWolf

@Ophelia "Last Christmas" is the WORST. "Last Christmas, I gave you my heart--" "Well, then, you are a DUMBASS."

Hellcat

@Ophelia Is Wonderful Christmas Time that Paul McCartney one? Because if it is, ohmygod I hate it so much!

emilylou

@SBGBlogs @Ophelia I HATE THE CHRISTMAS SHOES SO MUCH >:(

Also, the Wilsons' "Hey Santa" song. Barf.

area@twitter

@missvancity YES (sort of). There's a station here in Baltimore that switches over to all Christmas songs all the time on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving- and they're almost all horrible sappy songs too, "Dear Mister Jesus" is just the first among equals. I think they actually have an on-air thing where "Santa" comes in and pulls the "Christmas lever". The whole thing is both fascinating and horrifying, like some of John Waters' finest kitsch.

EpWs

@SBGBlogs OH MY GOD HOW DID I NOT KNOW ABOUT THIS BEFORE. Patton Oswalt is the best. That song is the worst. ("I died for your sins but those pumps are unforgivable" is my new favorite thing ever, by the way.)

@missvancity YES. They are. The one near me is called Mixmas, because it's on a radio station called Mix. This radio station goes ALL CHRISTMAS ALL THE TIME starting in, like, early November. It is maybe two dozen songs, tops, and and it's interspersed with "advice" by John Tesh. Who is a juicebox, and will tell you chipper advice about "Fourteen Things In Your Living Room That Will Kill You!" and such.
So anyway, stay where you are!

frigwiggin

I just got a better job at my place of work! Like, they want me to start at the beginning of the new year and everything! But my boyfriend says the pay they're offering is too low and that I should negotiate. Hairpinners, HOW DO I DO THIS? I know nothing about average pay for this kind of work, and I'm terrrrrible at negotiating anything because I feel like a selfish jerk who's trying to swindle somebody.

Ophelia

@figwiggin just for reference, what industry are you in? depending on which one, you can find info online.

frigwiggin

@figwiggin Also, I was practical and got my boyfriend a heated mattress pad for Christmas, and also gave it to him like a week ago so that we could start using it as soon as humanly possible. Best ever if you live in a house built at the turn of the century that doesn't have central heating! Except it makes it a million times harder to get out of bed into the cold, cold morning air.

frigwiggin

@Ophelia I work at a university and will be going into research in the Development department.

ELECTROMAGNETIC CHAOS

@figwiggin: Not an easy task, to be sure. You need to frame the conversation in a way that seems positive for both parties, and minimize the feeling of a 'lose' scenario. I would gather a little data about that job in your field and the average pay level, cherry pick the high numbers, and accompany that with two or three sentences about why you, specifically, deserve more money. Then cap it off with something like 'Of course, if the pay grade isn't flexible because of [business's] policies, I would understand if your hands were tied in this matter'. This gives them an 'out' without losing face, and possibly greater incentive to give you extra pay since you've made it less about you versus them, and more about the both of you versus the company.

Ophelia

@figwiggin If you're on the east coast, this might be a good start: www.nonprofitstaffing.com/salary-surveys-(1).aspx - they have info for NY, NJ, and DC. I'd say, if you're on a coast or in a major city, they probably hold up OK, if you're in a smaller place, probably knock a 10% or so off?

frigwiggin

@Too Much Internet It does sort of help that I already know the people in this department, but, I just--I'm terrible at asking for things. I like your phrasing, though, so I just have to be able to pull that off without stuttering when I go back to talk to the boss.

frigwiggin

@Ophelia I'm on the other coast, actually, but I can definitely work with this information! I'm also maybe going to talk to someone else in the team to see what their thoughts are; I just don't want to put anybody else in an awkward position.

Ophelia

@figwiggin Seriously, write yourself talking points/a script/whatever - it really can help - I tend to get flustered in conversations like this, and if I have even a few bullets to refer back to, I can keep myself on track.

redheaded&crazy

@figwiggin what would be easier for your employers? Hiring a new person that they have to train and don't know if they're any good, or keeping you on?

The answer obviously is keeping you on! Especially since they just offered you a new job! So you're starting from a solid position of being important to the company. So yeah, just write up a list of things that are good, make a note of, I don't know, cost of inflation over the past year, and go for it!!!

Lily Rowan

@figwiggin Thing 1: You're not putting them in an awkward situation. Repeat until you believe it.

Thing 2: You just ask. Too Much Internet has some good advice. I know it sounds impossible, but it isn't! You will feel so strong after you ask, even if they say no.

In higher ed, wouldn't the job have a formal range in the posting?

frigwiggin

@Ophelia Yes! I will do this! I will ask for more money like a pro. And come the new year, I will be Hairpinning from a better position!

EpWs

@figwiggin Hooray for promotions! Let us know how the pay raise request (like a boss) goes! The positive thoughts of the Hairpin Commentariat are behind you.

ELECTROMAGNETIC CHAOS

I would like some pity for my dearly departed complete set of website bookmarks

Upgraded my computer and wiped/reinstalled Windows. I'm a tech so I have my backup/restore method down pretty good, but newer Firefox revisions hide the good profile stuff in Roaming directory instead of Local; I backed up the wrong files. 6 years of bookmarks, gone. Pour one out for me.

JessicaLovejoy

@Too Much Internet http://tinyurl.com/6rrkts7

I mean this. I MEAN THIS.

ELECTROMAGNETIC CHAOS

@JessicaLovejoy: Oh good gravy, what is that? I must know the context! That's a good old fashioned fab four freakout.

Firefox now features Firefox Sync, a mini-Dropbox that keeps your bookmarks, saved forms, and passwords in the cloud. So, that's good. Still, back up your bookmarks, spay and neuter your pets

Polina

Debbie Downer reporting in. I want a family member to have a miraculous recovery from grave illness. I want a full time job with benefits and weekends off. And I want a really big gift certificate to Sephora. POUNDS OF MAKEUP LUXURY.

WUHH WUHHhhhhHhhhhhHhhh.

Gertrude

@Polina I TOO WANT A GIFT CERTIFICATE TO SEPHORA. Instead of gifts this year, I think my sister and I are just going to go to Sephora and fancy department stores together and indulge in makeup luxury.

eta: Clearly I only read the Sephora portion of your comment. Will send happy thoughts (and sparkly eyeshadow) your way.

ELECTROMAGNETIC CHAOS

@Polina: I will donate a hug and good thoughts to your cause.

frigwiggin

@Too Much Internet Can I go in on those with you?

noodge

@Polina i can get down with all those wants. i'm pulling for you.

Polina

Yinz are great! And I promise I didn't put this up here for internets love, we just don't talk/let it very much in the fam, so it's just something I need to let out in the netherworld of cyberspace.

frigwiggin

@Polina You may not have put this up here for internets love, but it's what we're giving to you! My best friend got very very sick back in January and it was genuinely the worst thing that has ever happened in my life, so my heart is basically leaping out of my chest in order to go out to you. (That metaphor got away from me a little there.)

Polina

@figwiggin Love love love.

EpWs

@Polina Lots of love and good thoughts heading your way. And this thread is making me feel even more determined to deal with The Mall in order to get a Sephora gift certificate for a good friend of mine who is law-school-stressed-out right now. Wish I could send them to all you ladies!

feartie

WHITE MULLED WINE. Yes, it is good: for those in the UK, Marks and Spencer's white mulled wine. Do it now.

noodge

@feartie i had it for the first time this summer, and it is delish!

Craftastrophies

@feartie Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat you are blowing my MIND.

heb
heb

Hey so say next time my roommate leaves his phone out I decide to make OneRepublic's "Apologize" his ringtone. How would I do that on a Droid 3?

lisma

@heb don't know, but be sure to record his reaction and post it here.

KellyStitzel

I would just like to make it through the holidays without being depressed, especially when I'm at holiday gatherings with friends who are all coupled up and I'm the only single one.

I would also like to be able to wear a sequined item of clothing successfully.

hairspin

@KellySkittles Oh, sister, I feel you.

noodge

@KellySkittles i think that #2 may help lead to #1? sequins always make me pretty happy, and if you wear something sparkly to these holiday parties, you'll be That Girl who is awesome! no need to mention or think about your coupled status.

KellyStitzel

@teenie My problem is finding the right sequined item. I don't want to go overboard, but I don't want to puss out and just wear a scarf. Maybe something that will hypnotize some cute boy into talking to me?

Faintly Macabre

@KellySkittles I've seen plenty of shirts/dresses that just have sequins on the neckline or shoulders, or there's always boleros or cardigans with sequined panels. I think a lot depends on the quality of the piece--if it's cheap, it'll look flashy instead of elegant.

noodge

@KellySkittles gurl, just go to lulus, and type in "sequin" as a search term... lots of over the top stuff, but i would recommend pushing yourself a little. there are some great sequin tanks (under a blazer? with great pants/pencil skirt and amazing shoes?) or if you like to rock killer heels, there are some awesome sequin shoes. they also have some items with spatterings of sequins, instead of sequin plating... have some fun with it! now i want sequins...

tea for all

@KellySkittles please, THIS, so i can live vicariously through you. it has sleeves and it's not skin-tight and i imagine it would look stunning.

missvancity

@KellySkittles I think you probably just have to own it. I am also the only single person in my group (just dumped Tuesday by a guy I REALLY liked), and I am also the most be-sequined (if those two are related, I choose sparkles over men). I'll be wearing my full on black and red sequined dress to two parties Saturday, and my gold sequined mini skirt to my own holiday party next weekend. And I'm sure I will work in more sequins, because in general, I feel the answer is always MORE SEQUINS.

missvancity

@tea for all Oh. My. God. I need that more than just about anything I've ever needed in my life.

tea for all

@missvancity i know. i can't even.

KellyStitzel

@tea for all That is super cute. Unfortunately, I'm not thin enough for it. That's part of my problem: I'm curvy and have a rack. Finding sequined stuff that a) fits properly b) is sexy and c) won't make me look like a slutty disco ball is HARD.

missvancity

@KellySkittles Hey now, are you implying that Slutty Disco Ball is not a good look?! /jk

tea for all

@KellySkittles then i would echo @missvancity and vouch for a sequined pencil skirt. one that hits at the waist and goes down to just above the knee? in stretchy material that makes curves look bangin and would give the illusion of curves for the boxier among us. unfortunately i do not know where i would find such a garment... but it would also be gold...

missvancity

@KellySkittles Do you have nice legs? Do you live in Canada? My gold sequined skirt is from Joe Fresh, and they have the same one in black, and it's a bit more toned down. It's short-ish (I tend to go REALLY short, generally, and this is a bit longer) and I think would be fairly universally flattering.

Faintly Macabre

@KellySkittles OR sparkly tights! I have a pair of Hue ones that are black and sheer with gold threads. They're understated but still sparkly, though that's not really sequins...

KellyStitzel

If I could find a dress with the right amount of sparkle, that would be dreamy. Dresses tend to look better on me these days and make feel less angry that I've gained weight. But I'm not opposed to, like, a tank to wear under a jacket or cardigan with a skirt.

Two of the activities I'd want to look hot for are happening next week (one is a thing I'm DJing/co-hosting at a local bar, one is a holiday party at a friend's house). It would be ideal to find something in a store that I could try on, since things fit me weird (mostly b/c of my rack). I'm determined to do this, dammit.

missvancity

@KellySkittles Maybe try Sears? I always find amazing things there, marked way down, and they often have a pretty wide range of sizes. You have to look through, because they have a lot of like, mom type stuff, but a pretty good selection of cool things are hidden throughout!

Hellcat

@KellySkittles OOOOOH! I saw something recently that was cut like a loose and slightly flowy t-shirt and the sequins were the little ones in a light beigy-chmapagny color and the shirt looked so not stiff and like it could be dressed up or down and it was so nice and I can't remember where on earth I saw it so I'm sorry! And I'm sorry for that run-on mess I just typed but I got excited.

Faintly Macabre

@KellySkittles I'm always going on about TJMaxx on here, but they sometimes have really nice sequined clothes from Calvin Klein and BCBG. I know this because I regulary seek it out, stroke the pretty sequins, and then admit that I can't afford/won't wear it right now.

oh, disaster

@KellySkittles I feel you. I tend to stick with sparkly accessories, but I hope you find that perfect sequined dress. It's out there, hanging on a rack, waiting to be found (or ordered online, it's not picky).

Lee Van Queef

Y'aaaaaaall! I'm going to Seattle for Christmas next week to visit my boyfriend's family. They've all planned wonderful things which I'm really excited for, BUT! I am somewhat embarrassed to admit that I'm excited to go to my boyfriend's former video store workplace, not just because it is a great happy wonderland of movies, BUT ALSO because I get to see the lonely shell of TUBS, the abandoned hot tub by-the-hour rental place, which is right next door to said former workplace, which I originally found out about from reading The Hairpin comments and have been subsequently OBSESSED WITH.

Is that weird?

emilylou

@Woman Laughing Alone With Boas NO, not weird. I live in Seattle and went to UW; my friends and I were always obsessed with TUBS. Did your bf work for Scarecrow?

Lee Van Queef

@emilylouise He did! I guess that was kind of obvious though. I don't know why it has stuck in my mind when I've never been there and there are so many delightful, exciting things we are going to do, but seriously, TUBS! So strange and mysterious!

MsChilePepper

@Woman Laughing Alone With Boas Ew, there was a Tubs in Bellevue (across Lake Wash.), too, next to my Mom's former office. It smelled weird when you walked by. :-/

Maybe we should plan a 'Pin-up while you're here? *hopeful*

oodelally

If this dog was waiting under the tree for me I would be the happiest lady in the world: http://www.hhbassetrescue.org/dogs/bleu1.jpg
More realistically I'll be getting a new curling iron. Speaking of hair, any tips for dying dark hair? My hair is in the chocolate/espresso family and I've never dyed it. I'm toying with the idea now but I still kind of think it's impossible. Any advice?

frigwiggin

@oodelally What color are you going for? Like, in the natural family or the "party color" family? My hair is naturally very dark brown and has been many, many colors.

oodelally

@figwiggin I was thinking a lighter brown or reddish color.

thenotestaken

@oodelally If it's your first time, definitely go to a salon instead of doing it yourself! It's definitely possible, try asking around your circle if anyone has recs for a good person/place.

frigwiggin

@oodelally Hmm, depends on how comfortable you are with doing it yourself. When I dye my hair, I just pick up a thing of bleach (I think I usually use the lightest kind of L'Oreal Feria?), gloves, and dye (Special Effects for bright colors, L'Oreal whatever for natural), and go to town. Some tips:

1. Make sure you don't have any dye allergies! I think usually the box has some tip for testing before you dye your whole head, but an allergic reaction is the last thing you want.

2. Make sure you have extra gloves! Always extra gloves.

3. Ditto for clips. Use alligator clips or something. I have short enough hair that it doesn't usually matter, but it's good to clip longer parts away from your face.

4. If you get dye on your skin, try and wash it off with a damp paper towel right away. I don't think natural colors dye the skin as quickly as wacky colors, but it's good to be safe. Rubbing alcohol is also good for after-dye touchups.

5. Have a friend help you! This is good for back-of-the-head viewing, if you don't have mirrors you can bounce off of each other.

6. Heat helps set the color, so if you have the time and can stand it, blow dry your head for a bit with the dye on it. Or use one of those fancy beauty salon chairs (but if you had one of those, I doubt you'd be asking for advice).

7. Also? Towels. And don't wear anything that you'd be afraid of getting dye on. Simple, but critical. I have two or three dye shirts that I rotate.

8. Make sure you have something to do while it sets! A book or TV or something, especially if you don't want to move around much after your head is goopy. I like TLC for this, watch some Duggars or something.

9. Make sure you saturate your hair thoroughly! If you have long hair or lots of it, sort of work from the roots out, and don't be afraid to really get in there with the dye.

10. Though if you're bleaching first, they tell you to go backwards, and start with the tips and do the roots last. Also, bleach after you haven't washed your hair for a day or two, because the scalp oils help protect your skin against chemical burns. And don't condition your hair between bleaching and dying! You want your hair to be super ready to soak up all the dye.

I think that's about it, but I'll come back if I've forgotten anything. This is really making me want to do a dyestravaganza and go back to my pink-haired glory days...

frigwiggin

@thenotestaken Aw, dying your hair at home isn't so hard! It helps to have a dye buddy, though, for sure.

Ophelia

@figwiggin Am I remembering right that you can put vaseline around your hairline so the dye doesn't dye your forehead? I've never dyed my hair, but used to be my friend's dye buddy sometimes.

frigwiggin

@Ophelia I'm pretty sure this does work! I've never done it myself because I'm a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants dyer and tend to just say "oh well" if my ears come out blue.

oodelally

@figwiggin Thank you for your expert advice! I'm still in the indecision phase but having thorough instructions is very reassuring. And congrats on your promotion!

Gertrude

ALSO thanks for linking my song, Edith! It brought much cheer to my (literally, thanks Chicago!) frozen heart.

The Lady of Shalott

I NEED A BREAK SO BAD. I am sick to the teeth of all my "colleagues" in grad school (the ones who think I'm a slut most of all), I'm sick of my neighbours (SO FUCKING NOISY), I'm sick of my very few friends (especially the one who keeps asking me when we're going to go to dinner, and then ignoring my emails and phone messages and texts asking her to just pick a fucking date already), I'm sick of surviving off pasta and toast and fighting off giant spiders because I live in a basement hellhole with no real kitchen, I'm sick of where I live and the awful prudish busybody people who populate it, I'm sick of MARKING PAPERS oh God, I'm sick of hunting down my adviser and beating him with a stick any time I want ANYTHING from him, I'm sick of fretting over my Ph.D application, blah blah blah blah BURNING IT ALL WITH FIRE

So I think that is why I need a vacation for Christmas. I just have to live until Tuesday! Then I am heading home!

Polina

@The Lady of Shalott "especially the one who keeps asking me when we're going to go to dinner, and then ignoring my emails and phone messages and texts asking her to just pick a fucking date already" Oh my goodness, do we share this same friend? Because this happens to me all the fucking time. One day she is being totally obnoxious and sending me emails like "are you alive? yes or no?" Then the next minute she is ignoring every possible communication. GRRR.

The Lady of Shalott

@Polina I think we must share this friend!!!! This drives me BATTY. I really and truly do not know what's so hard about saying "Sure, Thursday, how's 6?" and then just DOING IT? WHY does it have to be such a giant cluster of communications mishaps all the time????

Polina

@The Lady of Shalott Oh, oh and the best? Whenever she finally sets a date and time...texts me an hour earlier with some LAME ASS excuse! Maybe she hates me?

The Lady of Shalott

@Polina SERIOUSLY WHAT IS UP WITH THAT SHIT. I don't understand it!!!! My friend specializes in being fifteen to thirty minutes late for any encounter. Like....ugh.

EpWs

@The Lady of Shalott I, too, am sick of my neighbors! And hunting down grad school advisers with sticks! But mostly my neighbors, because DUDES HAVE STARTED A BAND and the drummer lives next door and is TERRIBLE and practices (terribly) all the time. #sethimonfire

The Lady of Shalott

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher Oh my good heavens. I used to live in an apartment where the next door neighbour played acoustic guitar, which was lovely because I could sit out on the balcony in nice weather and listen to him playing away next door. This was my karmic payback for when I lived in a house where two doors down there lived a banjo player who liked to play on the porch.

Now I live beneath a four-year-old who never walks, but RUNS everywhere, and stomps and screams and is just generally the loudest human being I've ever encountered. Ta-da.

EpWs

@The Lady of Shalott This one ALSO plays acoustic guitar out on the porch when it's warm out, BUT with one of those headgear'd harmonicas on, WHILE SINGING. (I would be okay with any/all of this if he was good.)
Good luck with the four-year-old. One day they will invent Noise Dampening Slippers for Children and that will be a good day.

Craftastrophies

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher I used to live next to a child learning the violin. This was godawful for the first six months, and then it was lovely.

I also had this friend. Her specialty was testing me things like 'should I stop bugging you? It seems like I never see you anymore'. I'd reply 'no, of course not! How about next week?' [SILENCE]. Or we'd finally set a date and time and she'd 'forget' and we'd end up cancelling or else I'd go to her place and watch her have her regular life while I sat there feeling awkward. I stopped chasing her and now I haven't seen her in six months. It's RELAXING.

Jolie Kerr

Ooooh I have a REQUEST!

Next week's AaCP is going to be all about HOLIDAY DISASTERS. I already have every variation of pine needles/sap question out there, and a couple other fun ones, but if you've got questions either email them to me at cleaning@thehairpin.com or leave them here. Please WOW me. I can't even imagine the kind of crazy holiday messes you bitches make but I know you make them. (Also I see you wiping your nose on your scarf, stop that.)

Porn Peddler

@Jolie Kerr WE ALL WIPE OUR NOSES ON OUR SLEEVES AND GLOVES, FOR THE LAST TIME. WHO IN YOUR LIFE IS DOING THIS?!

Worst holiday mess: oil everywhere from latkes, oil all over my hands and arms making tiny awful burns. THE SMELL. THE LINGERING SMELL.

frigwiggin

@Third Wave Housewife I, um, accidentallyhawkedaloogieontothelapelofmynewwoolcoattheotherday. Mumble mumble. Also, Ididn'tnoticeanditfrozealittlebit. All I could do is wipe it off and roll. Is that horrible?

thenotestaken

@Third Wave Housewife Oh man the smell stayed in my apartment for like a week! And you can't even open the windows because it's winter!

Porn Peddler

@figwiggin Um, I can roll with that: back when I thought I was 1. going to get a job that had a dress code, 2. suits were appropriate for me, I drove from my apartment to an interview in Syracuse at the ass-crack of dawn, then drove all the way down to Long Island (through NYC ughhhh) in a suit, while in the middle of a horrid sinus infection. I had something caught in my throat all day that I could not dislodge no matter what I did. When I finally got to Long Island, I went to see my brother's new apartment, and while walking through his bathroom, I suddenly sneezed and of course this dislodged the awful thing in my throat which landed POW, right in the crook of my elbow on my suit jacket and oh my god it was such a disgusting, tenacious sinus-infection mass.

@thenotestaken WHY DO THEY HAVE TO BE SO DELICIOUS

Are They Biting Ducks?

@Third Wave Housewife Worst holiday mess, Thanksgiving edition: My mother sets my stove on fire. Worst holiday mess, Christmas edition: my mother sets my dining room table on fire. Get rid of your moms, seriously, they are disgusting?

PistolPackinMama

@Jolie Kerr A few Christmases past, I may have spilled red wine on my mom's silk and wool Turkish carpet, a gift from my brother. It has ducks on it, swimming at the gates of Paradise. And I spilled wine on it. Just on the fringe. But still. Red wine. Mom's duck carpet. Agh!

dj pomegranate

You guys WHITE PORT makes amazing mulled wine. It is also amazing with a little tonic and a twist of orange! Something for everyone!

Nutmeg

I want an apartment, a job, or for my former boss to get audited by the IRS. I might be able to get at least one of those, if I play my cards right (hint: it is probably not the first two).

MollyculeTheory

Last night I had a dream that I was trying out to join the FBI (???) and it wasn't going terribly well, and I thought in my dream, "well, at least when I get home I can write The Best Time I Tried Out For the FBI for the Hairpin."

Porn Peddler

I think I am going to go to my alma mater tonight because 1. fuck it, I'm young enough to do that without it being weird. 2. tonight is an annual event that my greatest-college-experience-ever club puts on, and I spearheaded it last year and apparently changed the way it will run forever and I must go and see the people I trained killing it for the millionth year in a row, I might cry ngl.

Also, I worked Thanksgiving. I'm working on Christmas. I am even scheduled to work on Valentine's day, despite being the only employee at the store who is paired off. I could not get someone to cover my New Year's Eve overnight shift. I always have such depressing New Year's eves and this year Mister's friend invited us to go party in a house in the mountains for the weekend AND NOBODY WOULD COVER MY SHIFT. JUST ONE SHIFT :( Augh I would settle for spending the night with Mister, at home, but porn never sleeps...waaaaaah.

So I won't be going home for Christmas, which is sort of okay because I'm Jewish, but my dad's partner's family always celebrates and it's such fun and wahhhhh I miss them. I will be home next weekend for pre-chanukah festivities.

Kate Linnea Welsh@twitter

Ugh, this weekend I am driving to my parents' house to decorate their tree for them, because they will be away dealing with a horrible family crisis. I'm sure it will be AWESOME. I should obviously make a Sad Christmas Song playlist for the occasion, right?

PistolPackinMama

@Kate Linnea Welsh@twitter You should also buy yourself a bottle of something REALLY GOOD to drink while you decorate.

And that is a really nice thing to do for your parents.

Faintly Macabre

The radio in my office plays Christmas music 24/7. Just now, right after playing Madonna's horrendous "Santa Baby": "You can't have Christmas music without playing the Chipmunks song, right? Well, here you go!"

julia

@Faintly Macabre I worked for a florist one Christmas and the 8 hours of Christmas Music is a special kind of hell.

EpWs

@Faintly Macabre Retail at Christmas means Mixmas (Do you guys have this where you are?) for a month straight. One year we tried to keep track of how few songs were repeated but we went crazy instead. I think that damn Christmas Shoes song is the worst, though.

lisma

Asked my mom to get me a really nice chef's knife for Christmas, which turned into a story about how it is bad luck to give people knives as gifts. So she'll give me the MONEY to buy the knife but she won't actually buy me the knife. Irrational mother is irrational! But generous, very generous. Love my parents.

frigwiggin

@ginalouise My mom gave me a Wusthof knife for my birthday a few years back and it's still one of my favorite things! Sometimes I take it out of the cupboard just to pet it a little, which is probably weird, but whatever. Knives are awesome. I never heard about this bad luck thing, though. Does this mean I can retroactively blame my mother for everything bad that's happened in the past couple of years?

thenotestaken

@ginalouise I asked for a nice chef's knife as well!! My current one is from Value Village and is about as effective as trying to cut things with a spoon.

lisma

@figwiggin I think the bad luck thing comes from Korean culture, so unless your family is Korean you probably won't get a pass on blaming your mother for all your bad luck. If I should happen upon bad luck after buying my knife, I will still blame it on my mother.

Valley Girl

@ginalouise I have always heard that you also have to give a penny with the knife to avoid the bad luck! Or, if I'm being honest, actually I picked it up from some giant compendium of superstitions like the one we were all just talking about that I turned into my spiritual guide when I found it at the library when I was like 12. Same difference. Anyway I never really understood the knife/money connection but Giftypedia (?) gives an explanation:
Giving a pair of scissors or knife as a gift is considered bad luck as it said it would cut the friendship in half. To avoid bad luck in the relationship, the gift recipient should give a coin as to "pay" for the gift. It is common for the gift-giver to include a penny, often taped to the blade of the knife, which the gift recipient is to return as "payment".

lisma

@Valley Girl ahhhh this is wise and hilarious. I want a sharp knife so badly!!

Nutmeg

@Valley Girl My mom does that! I got a knife as a graduation present with a penny taped to it. I think my auntie included a penny when she gave my mom some fancy sewing scissors ($50 scissors, holy crap) a few years back.

But I didn't know you had to return the penny to the person who gave the gift, oops

SBGBlogs

@Nutmeg My mom bought me a Wusthof last Christmas (it's amazing btw) but she didn't give me a penny with it. She presented me a series of wrapped gifts and had me open them in order: 1. band-aids, 2. anti-bacterial spray 3. *drumroll* the knife! It was cute. It's also because I am constantly nicking myself during the holidays though thankfully I have yet to bleed into any of the food. I tell great stories.

Nutmeg

@SBGBlogs When I worked at a restaurant I would always get so ashamed when I cut myself; customers would see a bandaid on my finger and say, "Oh, did you cut yourself?" and I would get all defensive, "Yes, but not near the food at all, I was downstairs, I washed my hands ten times and always wear gloves!"

Of course, these were generally the same customers who, when I told them I had sprained my ankle falling down the stairs, asked, "Were you drunk?" (I was not, at the time)

The Lady of Shalott

@Valley Girl As a card-carrying Superstitious Person from a Superstitious Family, it's always been the other way around. Last year I got my mom a nice knife for Christmas and I legit made her go find a coin in her purse to pay me for it. I think it was a dime.

I wonder if this is related to the superstition that it's bad luck to give an empty purse or wallet? Whenever anyone in my family receives a wallet or a purse as a gift, it's always "seeded" with a quarter or a dollar bill or something.

I should start an Ask the Superstitious Person thread.

EpWs

@The Lady of Shalott I had no idea about any of this, but I'm kind of fascinated. I've got Sicilians on one side and Irish on the other so I think the reason it hasn't come up is because no one has bought anyone else knives for anything.

AmandaBunny

@ginalouise My very Irish mother is superstitious about this as well! My family and I all gave her a knife every birthday until she had an entire set but she insisted on giving us a quarter each time she received one. I've told friends who put knives on their wedding registry about it being bad luck to accept a knife as a gift and it's been news to all of them.

Hambulance

@ginalouise ...which reminds me of The Best Time My Boyfriend Bought Me A Complete Set Of Chef Knives For Christmas And Almost Got Arrested Trying to Take Them Through Airport Secuity So I Had To Pick Them Up With 20 Minutes To Board My Flight, Ultimately Abandoning Them In The Parking Lot, Scream-Crying.

So I think that money *for the knives* is really, really smart.

oh, disaster

My coworker is throwing his annual Christmas party tonight. If it's anything like last year, I will probably drink lots of wine, eat tons of buffalo chicken dip, yell at my other coworker, dance/sing to the N'Sync Christmas album and then give that drunk coworker a ride home. MERRY CHRISTMAS HAPPY HOLIDAYS

ELECTROMAGNETIC CHAOS

Oh, and also, I want someone to make out with constantly. It's been an exceptionally barren year for me.

ELECTROMAGNETIC CHAOS

@Too Much Internet: shit that is a pretty pitiful post - I meant for it to read like more coy/sardonic than pleading. Whoops!

ELECTROMAGNETIC CHAOS

@Too Much Internet: But dang - watching Adele's 'Set Fire to the Rain' video; envious of intense makin' out times. That dude punched a hole in the wall, seriously why you mad tho

PistolPackinMama

@Too Much Internet I hear you. Oy. If it's pathetic, then I am pathetic.

joie

you guys, my office just got robbed and my credit cards and the Christmas spending money I had in my purse was stolen. :( :( :( Like, all the money I have been saving to go Christmas shopping for my son after work! Today SUCKS.

Lily Rowan

@heyits Oh nooooo! :( :( :( :( :(

dj pomegranate

@heyits NO! That is awful.

BadWolf

@heyits Oh NO! Oh, honey, I am so sorry!

joie

@BadWolf thanks guys. :( I already canceled my credit cards, but I'm so bummed about the cash. I've been saving all my loose change and dollar bills for months to get this really cool marble run for my son, and now...poof. It's gone. it feels like such a violation, ya know?

Ophelia

@heyits ohhh, honey, that is awful!

Polina

@heyits This warrants some keyboard slamming. KLFJDIFHGLSEKFBNJDBGUIAEWHRUDSBJHGBDFG! I am so sorry!

frigwiggin

@heyits That's terrible! :( Is there anything you can do? Pass 'round the hat?

joie

@figwiggin Update! My office, unbeknownst to me, passed around the hat while I was in the bathroom, and when I came back to my desk, there was cash that totaled twice the amount of what was stolen. When I told them that it was way more than what I was missing, they told me they wanted me to keep it so I could get an extra Christmas present for my son. People! They do really shitty things, and then other people turn around and do truly generous, kind things in return. I feel pretty blessed.

ELECTROMAGNETIC CHAOS

@heyits: That is awesome, I was actually half way done making a kickstarter just for you that pinners could pitch in on, because I'll be damned if your kid isn't getting a marble run for christmas

frigwiggin

@heyits Ah! That's so warm-and-fuzzy and wibbly-making. Your coworkers! How great! Thank goodness for the good people to balance out the crummy people.

frigwiggin

@Too Much Internet What about other Pinners in need? Maybe we can do something for them?

joie

@Too Much Internet seriously? Wow. I'm...at a loss for words, thus making the second time in 10 minutes that I'm happy crying at my desk. Thank you. And @figwiggin I second that idea! I'd be more than happy to put this excess cash towards someone else's Christmas. In fact, that's what I'm going to do with it, regardless.

The Hairpin and all the people therein are getting a huuuuuuge hug from me right now.

ELECTROMAGNETIC CHAOS

@figwiggin: I'm thinking. With this instance, it's easy to set something up - it's directed to one recipient, for a specific reason, and contained in this thread. When we talk about many recipients and for no defined cause, that makes it much more difficult to both aim effectively and retain control.

The only thing I can think of off the top of my head, is a 'free/pass it along' stickied thread where pinners can give or trade items between each other, with the intent that it be charity. I imagine there's a website out there for this specific goal but I'm not aware what it is.

Lily Rowan

@Too Much Internet If you haven't seen the clusterfuck that resulted this week from Regretsy using Paypal to collect for folks, it's a real cautionary tale.

Lily Rowan

@heyits That's so great! Yay your coworkers. People, man. Most of them don't actually suck.

emilylou

@heyits OH NO! The worst!!! So sorry :(((((((((((((

Edit: OH WAIT I didn't read far enough down. What an emotional rollercoaster of a thread. Awwww. I love hearing stories about people doing nice things. I'm glad this has a happy ending.

frigwiggin

@Too Much Internet No, you're definitely right about that, and @Lily Rowan's totally right about the Paypal charity thing, so we do need to be careful. I just want to give!

joie

@figwiggin So, I've decided that I'm going to take the excess cash and use it to buy my niece and nephew some killer presents. I wasn't going to be able to afford to get them much, but now I'll have more than enough. My sister is supporting them on her own, while going to school full time and working two jobs, and I always feel so helpless that I can't help her more. Now I can. What an whirlwind of emotions this has been. I'm glad it has a happy ending, and thanks everyone for the support and kind words!

Faintly Macabre

@Too Much Internet Aww, I was hoping someone would!! Especially because marble runs are the best. But heyits, I'm so glad your coworkers pitched in--what a nice office.

frigwiggin

@heyits Great! This is definitely the best ending. :) It gives me so much mushy people-can-be-good spirit.

joie

@figwiggin you're telling me! It's like a Hallmark Christmas movie or something.

Faintly Macabre

@Lily Rowan Oh gosh, Paypal's responses don't even sound real! It sounds like it worked out well in the end, luckily, though the Regretsy woman got put through the wringer.

EpWs

@heyits High five to your coworkers for turning a truly shitty situation around. Warm fuzzies everywhere. I feel like right now especially it's great to hear about Nice People doing Nice Things. (Hairpinners, you are included in this!)

Lily Rowan

@Faintly Macabre Yeah, it was a real mess.

NeverOddOrEven

Open threads! 'Pinners! Talk me down!

Okay. So. Soon I will have an It Happened To Me published on XOJane. It's about the time my father tried to kill my whole family when I was a baby (you all get the scoop first!).
Yea.

So the problem is that I asked my mom's permission first, and gave my dad the heads-up now that it's about to go live. I wanted him to hear it from me, and not find it some other way. Now he, my sister, and I are scheduled to have A Talk this weekend, which needed to happen anyway, but my mom is getting super defensive about it all now. Stupidly, I did not expect this.
I've gotten all these emails from her defending herself and her actions, and at times telling me out right that I'm wrong.

Is it insane to be pissed about this and feel that I am the last person that should be put on the defensive here?!

noodge

@NeverOddOrEven no. not insane. wow, that sounds like Some Shit.

wharrgarbl

@NeverOddOrEven My husband's dad tried that, and I still occasionally have to tell him he's not crazy to a) be angry about it and b) be angry at his mom for her post-incident diminishing behavior. So, no, you're not insane. Minimizing is a fairly common tactic in situations where Serious Shit has gone down.

Porn Peddler

@NeverOddOrEven Definitely not insane to be pissed about it but also definitely see where your mother is coming from-- after all, it's everyone in the family's story, and, I'm sure, not exactly an easy subject. Best of luck, whatever happens!

NeverOddOrEven

@teenie Yes. Some shit indeed.

Look for it and read! I want page views 'cause one woman who wrote one was offered a book deal (!) and I'd say my story is about as epic.
I'd be nice to have something positive and with some forward momentum come from the whole thing.

NeverOddOrEven

@wharrgarbl Whoah! We should start an online support group or something.

My mom doesn't try to diminish so much as she gives painful and unecessary detail to me and my sister all the time. I don't know why she thinks this would be okay or helpful to us. And now I think she feels defensive because of what I wrote about my family/childhood in general.

NeverOddOrEven

@Third Wave Housewife Which is exactly why I asked her permission first - I felt like it wasn't just my story to tell. But she and my sister were very supportive and okay with it. I guess Mom was just expecting straight Dad-bashing and not anticipating her parenting being called into question.

Porn Peddler

@NeverOddOrEven I have Feelings about xoJane as a whole and in general, but oh my god they attract such good writing! I can think of so many people who published like, one piece on there, that totally deserve book deals. I will pageview the shit out of you!

Oh just saw your reply after posting. I'm sorry, I'm sure it's tough- we never know how we'll actually react to things until they happen :/

NeverOddOrEven

@Third Wave Housewife Well, I hope I live up to the standard.
I feel you on the mixed feelings - I keep up on it and am generally a fan, but something about it comes off rather... juvenile? As much as I loved the magazine, Jane is kind of the worst thing about the site.
What I will say though, is that S.E. Smith is amazing, and even the less evolved/thoughtful articles are still scathingly and painfully honest, which I appreciate. It's like the anti-Jezebel in that a lot of the writers are essentially saying "Here! Here are my unedited opinions! I may be wrong/offensive/ignorant, but I'm trying! And I welcome any eye-opening you may provide."
Where as Jezebel can be VERY unwelcoming to those who are percieved as less educated or aware in the matters of Politics and Feminism.

Porn Peddler

@NeverOddOrEven YESSSS I LOVE S.E. SMITH SO MUCH. And Lesley Kinzel and Emily McCombs. It does come off a little juvenile sometimes, and though they are better than Jezebel when it comes to criticism, that doesn't always fly very well either.

MollyculeTheory

@NeverOddOrEven I wrote one recently, and they let me not publish my last name or majorly identifying details, would that help in terms of your family being uncomfortable about it? Also, no, it is well within your rights to write about your own experiences, and you were brave & honest enough to tell everyone involved about it before publishing.

NeverOddOrEven

@MollyculeTheory Ooh, I read yours. I like your writing style.
I think they're more concerned with content than exposure. I decided to be credited.

EpWs

@NeverOddOrEven This sounds INSANE and intense, for everyone involved. Don't have much in the way of advice/input to offer (families are touchy, personal things), but let us know when it goes up, if we miss it?

PistolPackinMama

@NeverOddOrEven You are not insane to be mad. It's the job of a parent to protect their kids and to not diminish when serious things happen. I am sure your mom did the best she could at the time. But unfortunately, that doesn't mean mistakes have no meaning or consequences. It's okay to be upset.

Good luck. I'll skate over there and read when it goes live.

NeverOddOrEven

@MollyculeTheory Also excellent authors. And where has Hannah been lately? She's adorable.
Emily is my hero. She's the one I've been in contact with about publishing and her candor on that site is amazing. Being vetted by Bust is also much to her credit. I wish I had more back issues now that I know, I'd love to go back and re-read her stuff.

NeverOddOrEven

@AnthroK8 Thanks. Again, I feel silly for not seeing this coming, but I guess I hoped that for once she'd be able to put herself in my shoes for a minute and just let me have and own my reactions and interpretations, without inserting herself in to it. She seems to be incredibly bad at that particular sort of empathy.

:Cinnamon Girl:

THE MUPPETS vs. HUGO.

Ready, GO!

(aka help me decide which I wanna see)

Lee Van Queef

@.Lauren. They are both so, so SO GOOD. Both warmed my heart and made me teary-eyed. BUT if you have to make the choice, see Hugo, because the 3D is actually really, really great. (Imagine that famous shot from Vertigo with the zooming-in-while-panning-back thing, BUT IN 3D. SO COOL.)

EpWs

@.Lauren. MUPPETS! I saw Hugo, albeit in 2D, and while it was charming, I wasn't blown away. BUT I've heard such good things about the visual effects in 3D! Muppets made me cry, no joke. (Also, Chris Cooper raps. So there's that too.) Let us know what you end up doing!

sugarfree

I met a very lovely man a few weeks ago... and wise commenters of the Hairpin, perhaps you can help me parse this slightly weird scenario: we pretty much spent the whole evening talking to one another, he very easily and seemingly quickly told me that he was a single dad (which seriously, no problems with this for me), and unbelievably charmingly raved about his kid, while mentioning he was a single dad about three times in three separate ways (he seemed nervous about this fact). We talked about a lot of different things, art, etc... We also talked about doing fun winter outdoorsy things, and when I was going to give him my email address, offered my number and he politely declined. I gave him a lift home, he emailed me to thank me for the lift and say it was great to meet you, I answered. Two days later I invited him out to a party, to happen in three weeks (now one week away), and he said he'd be there for sure. (He answered the invite in under a half hour, not that that matters...)

So, you'd think, oh, we got on. Maybe he'll ask me out for coffee now that I've obviously made an overture that says "you're evidently sane, intelligent and cute enough for me to expose you to the rest of my friend group," but NO. A big, fat, whopping no. I have been seriously restrained and have not emailed, other than the party invite, despite really wanting to, because the initial conversation left me with so many questions! So much curiosity!

Anybody else have experience with something potentially going, but going super slow? Does any of this (no contact, not getting my number just because he CAN) strike anyone as familiar/weird/out of the ordinary?

BTW, serious lurker here, not often commenting, but y'all are the reason I read the Hairpin so religiously... lotsa great points of view!

PistolPackinMama

@sugarfree I'dve said, if he didn't take your number, he's not interested. But when he says "yes please" to a party where it sounds like he doesn't know anyone (except you?)... well, okay, so then he sounds interested!

Yanno. I'd just upfront 1) ask him on a date. And say the word "date" in the asking, so you know he knows what it is you are asking for. Do it at the party if you want. Or 2) upfront ask why he didn't want your number, specifically if that means he isn't interested in being asked on dates.

You are fab (said the diabetic to the girl called Sugar Free, which means of course you are fab!). And homeboy is lucky to make your acquaintance. Go for it, and if he declines, move on to some other cute single dad with similar interests and ask THAT guy out.

laurel

@sugarfree If he's recently out of a relationship, he might be questioning whether he's ready to start something new, even when an appealing sugarfree prospect presents herself. I wonder what it's like for parents to date, parsing how and when to bring new people into their children's lives. It sounds a lot more sensitive than for childless people.

I think your encounter with him at the party will tell you a lot about moving forward. Do you have a card? If you feel like things went well, as you say goodnight, hand him your card and say something like, 'This has been fun. If you'd like to have a drink or something, give me a call.' Confident and polite is pretty irresistible.

sugarfree

@AnthroK8 @laurel Thanks for your responses! No, he certainly won't know anyone else at my party except for me... so yeah, you would think interest, no? I'm not sure if it makes a difference, but his kid is about to go away to school, so is at that entering adulthood stage. Not entirely the same as if the kid were little or still a baby. But I honestly don't know what the story is with the mom; he passingly mentioned she lives down the street. (I KNOW!! Questions out the wazoo!). I do have several friends who are not phone people, or reserve phone contact for close intimates, so have wondered if that accounts for no phone contact, but ya never know. He was texting with his kid the night I met him, so perhaps phone contact equals friend or family.

I'm certainly hoping I'll be able to get more out of the guy at the party. Great advice, Hairpin friends!

@AnthroK8 I've fallen off the wagon several times, but have generally tried to avoid sugar completely, since about 1998. My grandmother and great grandmother were diabetic (great gran died of it too young) and it seems to run in my family on both sides; I tend to be hypoglycemic so I try to avoid anything that will swing the blood sugar too high or low. Insulin tolerance and all that jazz...

Porn Peddler

I know the Hairpin already has a million awesome advice columns but your friendly neighborhood sex shop employee and sex educator extraordinaire would love to hear/answer your questions about sex toys/lube/safe anal play/porn/things you barely want to admit to yourself. Someone suggested that A dude answer porn questions one week and it just got me thinking...

ELECTROMAGNETIC CHAOS

@Third Wave Housewife: 'safe anal play'

Never stick anything smaller than your elbow in your ass.

Wait; or is it your ear?

ThatWench

@Third Wave Housewife Heh. Suggestion near-jinx. And I feel like these two ideas might work well as, like, cousins? In any case, we obviously need a thread dedicated to "Porn: It isn't threatening the way you've been taught (by a sex-phobic society) to think it is"

Also, then I attempted to post this reply to my own thread. Which was not the right button to click.

Porn Peddler

@ThatWench I almost commented, "Comment Fraternal Twins!" on yours, but then I started thinking about dinner and wandered into my kitchen. I would like to think I could answer some of the questions that might fall under a similar category, but if someone actually came forward and said hey, I roll with the nonmonogamy and am generally smart and tactful! they would obviously be a much better candidate than me. But porn? Sex acts? Sex toys? Lay it on me!

:Cinnamon Girl:

@Third Wave Housewife What is your favorite lube? My vaheen is a delicate flower in terms of balance (yeast, bacteria, etc), and I've used Liquid Silk in the past.

Now you all know I am a delicate flower! Or as my previous boyfriend used to say (endearingly), "you are such a Chihuahua."

Porn Peddler

@.Lauren. My vaheen happens to be a warrior so I can use almost anything, BUT! Sliquid Silk is a really good one for less hardy vaginas. If the thought of trying out lubes at the risk of BV is just not appealing to you, stick with Sliquid Silk. Luckily, many brands are now making lubricants that are labeled woman-friendly, natural, mild, etc., so sampling from among those is less likely to aggravate your chihuagina.

As a general rule, you will want to buy lubricants that 1. have no bells and whistles about warming/tingling/cooling/scent/flavor/whatever. Let's be real, that shit doesn't usually work or feel good anyway, and if you are super sensitive, you can probably take it as a red flag. 2. contain no glycerins or parabens- many are now advertising this. Astroglide even makes one now! 3. NO SILICONE LUBE (or water-silicone hybrids) EVER, NOT EVEN IN YOUR ASS. but you probably know that already. Even Sliquid makes one of these, but I'm going to go right ahead and say no...you can maybe put that in your ass, carefully, if you're not using a silicone toy, but in that case, you could also go with Sliquid "Sassy" Gel.

I have heard good things about Wet brand's natural lubes- in particular, the silky one. (It really is labeled "silky" and the cap is purple- go find a sample size!) Intimate Organics makes some interesting stuff, but I have not had the opportunity to play with it and squish it around in my hands just yet :( I've also gotten some thumbs up on Pjur Lube.

Porn Peddler

@.Lauren. ALSO! I assume you take care of your chihuagina in other ways that don't relate to lube, such as washing the external bits with only water, wearing only cotton undies, and frequently letting it breathe (woohoo commando!). Btw, antibiotics: so horrible for your vagina.

EpWs

@Third Wave Housewife Me next, me next! How in the name of Ugly Renaissance Baby Jesus does one go about selecting a vibrator? There seems to be about fourteen billion of them out there and most of them look alarming. What should I look for/avoid (materials/brands/things that will explode in my ladybusiness)?

Porn Peddler

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher YES YOU. ALRIGHT! I'm sorry to say that the following might be just as intimidating as a store full of vibrators, but I end on a good note, I swear.

First things absolutely first, let's talk about materials: look for toys marked "phthalate free" or "Safe and Pure" (California Exotic Novelties uses this term on a little seal) It's unclear how much phthalates can actually harm you, but better safe than sorry, and phthalates make your toys smell/feel gross anyway. Phthalates are used to make plastics softer and more flexible, mostly PVC, so cheap, generic-looking dongs and vibes are where you might find them. Avoid those, because they may be cheap and utilitarian, but chances are they will not last and also, possible health concerns...like, reproductive damage concerns. Some materials you can count on to not contain phthalates anyway: ABS plastic, stainless steel, glass, Doc Johnson Sil-A-Gel, Pure or medical grade Silicone, Cyberskin, FantaFlesh.

On steel and glass- the smoothest and heaviest toys out there. My favorite materials, actually! Glass vibrators, however, are few and far between.

Now, Cyberskin: this is my least favorite sex toy material. It is extremely easily damaged by force, improper storage and care (and there are many things you need to watch out for with cyberskin), and it also feels like dead skin slapped over electronic components and I don't like that. Fantaflesh is a little more solid, but it is generally used for masturbators and not vibrators, so you may not need to worry about that.

Silicone is another very safe material for sex toys, and is among the softest and smoothest. ABS plastic and Acrylic plastic may be smoother but it also may have scratchy seams. In any case, these materials are fairly easy to care for, and body-safe. Okay, we've talked about materials! woo! ON TO TOYS.

Have you ever used any sort of sex toy at all? If not, you may not actually want a vibrator just yet. A vibrator can almost always get the job done for a lot of women, but honestly, I don't really dig vibrating toys at all, despite the fact that they totally work. If you KNOW you want a vibrator, skip this next paragraph.

If you've never had a toy or a vibrating one before, get a Pipedream Luv Touch bullet or Lipstick Vibe. Both are about $10 and pack a punch for their size. The bullet is surprisingly powerful, but the Lipstick Vibe is insertable, so you can find out if you like vibrations internally, externally, both, or not at all. Tiny buzzy toys are very common and can be really really cheap- and who says you can't buy a $3 disposable vibrating cock ring and play with it yourself just to test the waters? GO NUTS.

Here's the rundown on some common styles of vibrator:
-Slimline/straight vibes- no curves, bells, or whistles- a straight, usually fairly slim "rod" best for penetration. You can, obviously, use it on your clit, too. You can also buy sleeves for these that are phallic, or textured, or that will convert it into a quick and dirty rabbit.
-Tulip vibes- sort of looks like an egg on the end of a little rod. These are designed to target the G-spot and are also good for using on your clit, because of the nice bulbous tip.
-G-spot vibes- A LOT of vibrators fall into this category, but I'm mostly talking about insertable vibrators that have a noticeably curved tip that targets the g-spot.
-Eggs and bullets- non-insertable vibrators for external use. Eggs tend to have more surface area than bullets.
-Rabbit vibes- Ugh these ugly things! Insertable vibes with a little fluttery thing or knob attached toward the bottom of the insertable rod part that targets your clit. And, like I said, sometimes they also have anal components.
-Wands- like the Hitachi Magic Wand, oh dear. Powerful, bulbous-tipped "massagers" (that also may come with attachments for g-spot stimulation or other options) that honestly, I'd buy for my aching back. Usually pretty powerful because they are big enough to take C-batteries or to plug into the wall.
-Phallic vibes- they look like crazy dicks. They are usually textured or veiny or have a g-spot targeting tip, and some have balls, which is pretty cool. Many slimline vibes come with a phallic sleeve so you can use it any way you like.
-A ton of other stuff- such as stone-shaped ergonomic vibes that are designed to rest comfortably against your ladybits.

Okay, so let's assume you have figured out whether or not you like vibrations and if so, what type. I will now advise you to NOT buy a toy online just yet. Sometimes, despite a website's great description of something, holy shit this thing looks a lot bigger/impractical in person. So make your way down to the friendly neighborhood sex shop and take a look. And here's where it gets really simple: keeping in mind the qualities of each material and what you like/don't like in terms of vibrations, just look around until something catches your eye, looks pretty, practical, etc. Ask the clerk if you can battery test it, if it's a vibrator. Set a budget and realize you can always buy another toy later if you turn out to really love the simple little g-spot vibe you buy that day, or hell, you hate it, and wish you had bought a simple jelly dong. Ask yourself if something is just too big or hideous or textured (keep in mind that ridges on a glass piece, for example, might push it over the edge from "smooth as silk and oh so wonderful" to "okay this is a little harsh").

My favorite thing ever is the Icicles line from Pipedream. They make some wands that are just wow- like this one which is gaaaaawgeous when you see it in real life! Doc Johnson's Black Magic, White Knights, and Chocolate lines are also good for nice, basic stuff.

And I promise, picking out a vibrator is simpler than you think: bypass all the crazy shit at first, and buy something simple. You can worry about the advanced stuff later.

EpWs

@Third Wave Housewife You are my new favorite person! I feel like I should print this out, take notes and highlight, and take it with me to my Friendly Neighborhood Sex Shop. (I am hoping that my neighborhood sex shop is, in fact, friendly. Guess I'll find out!) I've never bought/used a toy before, so this is all very fun and crazy and, now, so much less intimidating! Hooray for Hairpinners!

Also: Jane? Edith? Can we make this a for-reals column? Girlfriend knows her stuff!

Porn Peddler

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher Oh man one tiny thing I forgot- multi-function vibes will do patterns of vibrations instead of just speeds/intensity. Like, they thud and throb and pulsate and surge and oh such fun those things are. Some also have rotating tips and holy shit those are actually kind of alarming.

EpWs

@Third Wave Housewife I just had a nightmarish image of a rotating tip getting snagged in hair and owwwwwwwww.

The Lady of Shalott

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher Can we have this as a real column? Please?

AmandaBunny

@Third Wave Housewife You are amazing. And I have been dying for a glass vibe for years but yeah- nearly impossible to find.

laurel

@Third Wave Housewife "Like, they thud and throb and pulsate and surge and oh such fun those things are."

Could you, um, be more specific? /blushes

Porn Peddler

@laurel Vibrators that are single speed or multi speed will simply "buzz" at varying speeds or intensities. Multi-function vibes can buzz at varying speeds, but they can also do other things that may be more appealing to someone who doesn't like the intense buzz of a standard vibrator: they can vibrate in waves (from low to high to low again and so on) or they can pulsate (quick successive bursts of intense vibration) or they perform other patterns of vibration. I wish I had a little application that could graph patterns of vibration...that would make this much clearer.

Porn Peddler

@.Lauren. okay late to the party but belated suggestion: http://www.vieproducts.com/shop/
This brand just came into my store and I am super impressed. It is currently winning the "fewest ingredients contest." The ultra sensitive lube in their line looks like the most perfect ladybits friendly lube ever.

Craftastrophies

@laurel They go, like... zzz...zz...zzzz...ZZZ! Zzzz...zzz...zzz...ZZZ!

Or zzzzzzzzzZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzZZZZZZZZ. Or something.

I tend to prefer this to straight vibe, which I just sort of adjust to and don't really feel after a while. I have a gspot vibe that does small, medium and big vibrations, plus three different pulses. It wasn't even very expensive. Find a sex store with a lady behind the counter and ask her to battery test them for you. They are usually super friendly and nice, and it's not embarrassing because they do this every day so it's just like you're buying a phone and want to check out the ringtones. :)

ThatWench

Okay, so, after reading yet another "Ask a..." with questions concerning cheating/fidelity, would anyone else be interested in "Ask a Nonmonogamist"? (Or, alternately, ask a Poly Person, or some other title; would have to be defined by author, and I'm certainly not qualified enough to volunteer.) Having a lot of friends who do various versions of relationships that are something other than monogomous binaries, I feel like there's a lot more emotional and hormonally and sociological complexity in the world when it comes to relationships than cliches like "once a cheater". And that understanding and unpacking the ways all of those things influence our lives can make understanding ourselves and each other so. much. easier. And everytime someone suggests that "oh, well, cheating/temptation to cheat/a work crush means something's wrong in my primary relationship" it makes me want to rend a garment or two. So, it would just be a way to present a totally different take/worldview on male-female, or female-female, or male-male-male-female relations.

I dunno. It's Friday afternoon, I should be going home to my video games now. Fus Ro Dah, everyone.

:Cinnamon Girl:

HOW DO I INSERT A LINK 'ROUND THESE HERE PARTS? (said with some serious twang)

tea for all

follow these instructions: hyperlinks

Valley Girl

@.Lauren. You use regular html tags, but they disappear after you submit (if you go to edit). Also they don't appear in your post as links right away. I think. Not positive!

Valley Girl

HAPPY FRIDAY YOU GUYS!!! For Christmas I really wanted to go see Wicked with my mom, and we're totally going tonight with hopefully great seats that just aren't right next to each other. But first we're going to go get our nails did at this really cool nail salon and then probably eat at Umami Burger and celebrate my being done with finals for the quarter. It's gonna be awesome!

It's been a rough few days/weeks/months/years (clapclapclapclap) but it's getting to be that time of year where everything seems magical and possible, at least for me. Hope everybody else is doing okay, too.

frigwiggin

@Valley Girl Eee, sounds like fun! I saw Wicked with friends a year or two ago and it was the best.

parallel-lines

I am getting absolutely nothing for Christmas because we have to save for our wedding and all gifts of cash are for the wedding and fuuuuuuck. Weddings are so frustrating and so expensive. It's going to be hard to not be like, "Hope you assholes enjoy eating my Christmas, vacation fund and the ten pairs of shoes I couldn't buy. And you'd better eat it all dammit! Every single bite!" the day of the actual event. But I won't. I'm cool.

Melissa Murray Dunning@facebook

What should I get my brother for Christmas? He's a nice guy, but I don't know him that well since we're 5 years apart and we haven't lived together since 1998. Also, he's super conservative, which I am really really not. Like, he asks for books by Fox News types, which I refuse to spend money on.
Any politically neutral gift ideas?

Also, does anyone in Seattle want to drink hot buttered rum with me? I know a place that makes 'em really good.

oh, disaster

@Melissa Murray Dunning@facebook My brother and I are also five years apart but he's more of the (ugh) dude-bro-frat type, but he's not completely despicable. I've gotten him books that I think a dude would like (some Vonnegut, Bradbury), but I'm not sure if he ever read them. Brothers are hard to figure out.

Rookie (not the magazine) (not that there's anything wrong with that)

@Melissa Murray Dunning@facebook How old is he and what are his other interests? I just thought of a great gift for my own brother, and found a kickass housecoat for my nonna (who is IMPOSSIBLE to shop for) so I might be on a roll here.

PistolPackinMama

@Melissa Murray Dunning@facebook Gift certificate to something cool that pretty much all guys like? Sports-related book, if he's into sports? A plate of your signature cookies (or whatever) and a bottle of his favorite booze? When I doubt, I always buy my brothers good whisky.

MsChilePepper

@Melissa Murray Dunning@facebook Why yes, yes I would like to drink hot buttered rum with you! Where is this lovely watering hole of which you speak?

Lucienne

I want to get into [impossible Ph.D program]. Since basically I am asking to be poor and overworked and under appreciated and sexually harassed for the rest of my life, I don't think this should be such a difficult Christmas present for the universe to give me!

Pound of Salt

I'm sorry to be raining here, but my boyfriend of 4 years just broke up with me, and I barely have any friends in this city. I wish I could hug hairpin in person.

The Lady of Shalott

@Pound of Salt Oh no! I am so, so, so sorry to hear that. The Hairpin is here for you! Consider yourself hugged.

emilylou

@Pound of Salt Oh no. I'm so sorry, I hate it for you. Where do you live?! Maybe there is someone on Hairpin in your city who will take you out for drinks? (Long shot, but I guess you never know.)

EpWs

@Pound of Salt I'm so sorry, that is an awful awful time. Where are you? We will find you a Pinner!

Porn Peddler

@Pound of Salt What city indeed.

oh, disaster

@Pound of Salt Oh no! I'm so sorry. :(

Emma Peel

@Pound of Salt Big Internet hug.

PistolPackinMama

@Pound of Salt Oh no! I am so sorry that happened to you. I just saw downthread a friend came by. But I still wish we could ply you with St. Germain drinks and hug you.

MsChilePepper

@Pound of Salt That blows. I'm very sorry for your heartbrokenness. *internet hug*

vapur
vapur

@KellySkittles try shopruche.com! They have pretty affordable dresses (30-50$) and lookbooks if you're worried about styling, etc.

Danzig!

What I would like for Christmas is a place to live in NYC when I move there in early January. I'm in talks with a doctor in West Harlem to share a 3-bedroom place, but she's sloooow to work out details and if it falls through I'll be left SOL. So... Tips on living in NYC, I guess? I'm a greenhorn from out CO way, never lived in a big city for more than a weeks' time. Tell me a good place to get Sukiyaki at inconvenient hours!

I would also like a kiss from a lady, that would be nice.

Also, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo OST is out and Trent Reznor is doing his Trent Reznor Oscar-winning ambient thing. It's okay! Except for the last track, which is a Bryan Ferry cover with his new band. Trent sounds like Phil Collins now. Must be fatherhood.

What would also be nice is a kiss from a lady, but I can't get that, so I bought myself the new Demdike Stare albums instead. Not nearly as nice, but I can pretend they are.

Pound of Salt

You guys. You're so sweet and it means so much to me! Charm City - but don't worry too much, an old friend stopped by tonight! Love you all.

EpWs

@Pound of Salt Good! Friends are the best, especially in situations like yours. Keep good people around you! The Hairpin is always here, too. Big hugs!

Craftastrophies

@Pound of Salt Yes, and we are always interested in hearing you talk about it. Group therapy for all! Tell us how you are doing, often. hugs.

EpWs

Hairpin, it is Friday night, and I am sitting on my floor surrounded by a bowl of eggshell pieces, glitter, and mason jars, and am trying to figure out how to glue a toy pterodactyl to a toy triceratops. (The things I do for my delightfully odd coworkers' Christmas presents...)

BadWolf

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher Dude. And you think my diner sounds magical.

EpWs

@BadWolf I hope your diner is going better than my snow-globing. I got one assembled and let it dry and then shook it and the top of the base came off, so now every time you shake it you get two dinosaurs attached to a disk of plastic flying around a mason jar full of glitter. I have attached speech bubbles to the outside that say "OH GOD EARTHQUAKE! WE'RE GONNA DIE!" and "WHAT EARTHQUAKE?" and am calling it a win.

Rookie (not the magazine) (not that there's anything wrong with that)

This isn't about what I want for Christmas, but a couple of Friday Open Threads ago I talked about how I was mostly out of the breakup bunker but still too scared to listen to Arcade Fire again. The breakup had taken Arcade Fire away from me. But this week I listened to The Suburbs from start to finish! And didn't cry or anything! So thank you, Alice Prin, or whoever it was who told me to just go for it and take back my iTunes. I did it, you guys!

What I want for Christmas: a cloche hat, an awesome new purse, fancy nail polish and makeup, the confidence to not be terrified of my promotion at work(!), and an actual permanent home for a friend who's been in a weird living situation for the last few months and deserves better.

And maybe a kitten.

Alice Prin

@Rookie Holy smokes! That was me, and I legit listened to the Suburbs this weekend and thought about you! HIGH FIVE!

"Modern Man" gets me right in the temple. Dang it, dude.

Rookie (not the magazine) (not that there's anything wrong with that)

@Alice Prin Yeah, I definitely enjoyed hearing "Modern Man" again. Also getting through "The Suburbs" and "Ready To Start," which I thought would be tough, was doable. Mostly because they're just that good. I've still got some music that I haven't gone back to yet, but that's okay. I took Arcade Fire back.
And thank you again.

Alice Prin

@Rookie Glad to help!

Emma Peel

Going through a horrible, horrible breakup: four years together, love each other deeply, but finally & suddenly admitting the circumstances aren't working (long story, but truly the circumstances, not the relationship).

Was 100% behind the mutual (& mutually heartbreaking) decision until tonight, when finally hit me that I've lost my best friend/love of my life/best man I've ever known, quite possibly forever.

Circumstances are shitty, and feel strongly that we should stick to our decision of several months apart before we reconsider, but omg. How do I keep going when I feel like my heart has been yanked out of me? And it's CHRISTMAS. I usually love Christmas, but two days ago "Walking in a Winter Wonderland" made me cry at a fucking Starbucks.

EpWs

@Emma Peel That is so hard, and heartbreaking. Lots of hugs and good thoughts going out to you!

I'd say that for now, your best bet is to try and distract yourself. Don't try and push yourself to move on or anything you're not ready for--this is a shitty, incredibly hard situation coming from an incredibly difficult decision, and mourning it is totally okay. But try and go out, surround yourself with friends, do fun things, watch movies that are not love stories, and please take care of yourself!

EpWs

@Emma Peel Also: this was linked upthread and it made me giggle unreasonably. It is maybe the antidote to Walking in a Winter Wonderland: Patton Oswalt Rails On Christmas Shoes

candybeans

@Emma Peel Ugh, so so sorry. That does sound like the worst kind of breakup--breaking up because of circumstances instead of because the guy is a juicebox makes it very hard to convince yourself that getting back together isn't a good idea.
and, yes to distractions. I used to listen to podcasts all the damn time after a breakup a while back--other people's (funny) voices in my head kept me from thinking as many sad thoughts. Going out is far superior, of course, but for when you're on your way to work or doing the dishes or your friends are tired of hearing you talk about the relationship, that's my humble (and slightly odd) suggestion. Also: loads of bad reality tv.

Emma Peel

@candybeans Yeah, this is the first time that I've honestly just wanted to change my mind -- it was a LDR, circumstances were making me miserable, so getting back together immediately is a nonstarter. We agreed to have a serious conversation about it after 6 months, and I'm telling myself that if we are as great a couple as I always thought we were, time apart to grow on our own will be healthy in the long run.

It's a tough needle to thread, because a conversation is a promise of nothing more than that (and also I have no idea how I'll feel in five minutes, let alone five weeks or months). My only (small) comfort is that he probably feels this way too, although I'm not calling him because we agreed not to talk for awhile and making him enforce that is totally unfair.

Totally great coping strategy, at least for me: Rereading epic books on the Middle Ages. I may be totally heartbroken, BUT I DON'T HAVE THE PLAGUE. (Going out makes me sad because I just want to come home and tell him about it afterward, but I am continuing to do it to the best of my ability.)

EpWs

@Emma Peel I'm going to echo @candybeans on the really bad tv front, for two reasons: If it is REALLY bad TV (Jersey Shore, anyone? Or Toddlers in Tiaras? Or America's Next Top Model cycle-long marathons?) it will both make you feel better about your life AND you will feel shamed that you watched/enjoyed it and will not want to share it with anyone. Except the Hairpin. We're here for you.

AT LEAST YOU DON'T HAVE THE PLAGUE. Remember this!

Does Axl have a jack?

@Emma Peel Thirded on the bad tv; Rock of Love, I'm just saying.

sandwiches

@Emma Peel Oh man, so many hugs :( On the epic medieval books topic, can I suggest Doomsday Book by Connie Willis (and another unrelated non-medieval epic of hers, Passage) - they are sad, because that's what she does, but they are super diverting and interesting and when I read them during my last major breakup, I figured if I was going to be crying anyway, crying over a book was infinitely preferable to crying over a failed relationship. Bonus: they are not romance-y at all, they are about smart, awesome people doing awesome, hard things.

Emma Peel

@sandwiches You all are great! And I LOVE LOVE Connie Willis. I'm considering re-tackling the epic Blackout/All Clear but am not sure I can handle that scene at the end where Colin comes back.

sandwiches

@Emma Peel Yay! I have actually not read those yet, they are sitting on my shelf looking all forlorn at me! Have you read Lincoln's Dreams? It's another gut-punch ending book, and definitely a first try at the idea she fleshed out in Passage, but...I love it so much. The last line gives me shivers every time.

Does Axl have a jack?

So. I've been seeing a guy casually (dates about once a week, frequent textage) for about 6 months, and I'm feeling odd about the whole thing right now. Basically, I'm ass over teakettle for him and want more from the relationship ("relationship"), but I don't know if I should be blunt about it or let things progress naturally or what. And on the subject of natural progression, is is a bad sign that things haven't gone beyond casual in six months? The intervening variables: we're both semi-recently and youngishly divorced, and I've been perhaps a smidgen distant due to external issues. Or am I freaking out for no actual reason?

Emma Peel

@armyofskanks After six months, I think it's reasonable to say you really like him a lot and would like to see him more (or whatever), and you're sorry if external stuff has given the wrong impression. Being able to say what you need/want in a relationship shouldn't be a dealbreaker, and if it is, isn't it better to find out now? Good luck! And yay for finding a guy you are ass over teakettle (haha) about!

NeenerNeener

@armyofskanks Are you just waiting for him to ask to see you more and secretly being offended that he doesn't? Or have you tried to make plans to see each other more and he dodges? If it's the former, then it's not really a bad sign (he may just be following your lead) and you should try to make plans more and see what happens. If it's the latter, as Emma Peel says, it's not unreasonable for you to bring it up.

The Lady of Shalott

@armyofskanks I feel you on that--that happened to me earlier this summer, almost exactly, with the seeing once or twice a week and frequently talking. Here is what I did: I told him straight up that I wanted him as a boyfriend, not just as a friend. He told me he didn't have the time to commit, and then by next week he was on Facebook with a new girlfriend.

The point being, I hope your casual dude is not a juicebox like that one! But for me, it was easier to just lay it all out there and devil take the hindmost. It was super scary and all, but I definitely felt MUCH better afterwards. In general I am a big fan of communication, especially in relationships--and definitely with what @Emma Peel said--better to find out now than invest time and energy, right?

Good luck!!!

Does Axl have a jack?

@Emma Peel
Y'all are totally right that I need to go for it; I'm just slightly terrified of what the outcome will be. Right now it's like Schrodinger's Relationship, and I should just open the damn box! But I'm notoriously bad at box-opening, where box-opening equals communication. Analogy fail.

@NeenerNeener I've just been waiting for him to make plans more often, etc. Maybe he's doing the same.

@The Lady of Shalott I'm sorry to hear about your juicebox!

I'm seeing him on Sunday, so we shall see if I manage to have that conversation...

NeenerNeener

For Christmas, I want The Hairpin to stop crashing my browser at work. No problems at home on Safari, but Explorer is really, really, really not having it.

BadWolf

Dispatches from the all-night diner, where it is freezing, and my paper is not written, and they are making a whole new pot of coffee for "the little historian" (aka me):

Waiter, to Crazy Lady #1: "He used to be a Lubavitcher. Now he's a yogi. He went to Midnight Mass and he got enthralled."
Waiter, to cook: "ARE YOU IN HEAT?"
Crazy Lady #2: "Saint Theresa has a calm smile. Look, look, she's smiling! And so serene! I'm named for her, you know. My name is Mary, like the Blessed Mother."
Dude in window, to me: "[inarticulate mouthing] ...You remember that, okay? OKAY?" [blows kisses]

EpWs

@BadWolf WHAT IS THIS PLACE? It sounds surreal/magical/something out of a movie.

BadWolf

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher It is the diner in my neighborhood in Brooklyn, and it is SO MAGICAL. It's all red pleather and brass and it's still the 1960s in here. Everyone is completely batty. I love it.

MsChilePepper

For Christmas, I really need some new shoes, because most of my shoes in current rotation are on the verge of being totally trashed. :-/ I have horrible, big, wide, Fred Flintstone feet, and it sucks HARD trying to find shoes that fit. In summer, I live in Teva sandals, but I can't do that now. *sigh* I also want a therapeutic light box, for SAD.

I hope y'all get what you want, or at least get what you need (sorry, Mick).

Waiting

I know I'm late to this thread but... whatev.

All I want for Christmas is to love my boyfriend again.

Been let down too many times, and then he goes and says his exgirlfriend's name during sex... with me. Something just shut off inside of my and I can't turn the warmth back on again. I'm just cold inside.

Alice Prin

@MalPal Somebody did that to me once and I was extremely jetlagged so I threw a plate at him.

Yeah, get rid of this guy immediately.

Craftastrophies

I already know what I'm getting for Christmas. From my mother I asked for a chest freezer. I already have it and it's AMAZING. From my boy I am getting a stocking of crap, the latest Tamora Pierce (EE!!!!!!!) and a custom made bikini from Miss Brache that I have been stalking on etsy for literally two years. I just hope it comes in time. The other thing I wanted for Christmas was to be able to enjoy it properly. I wasn't going to go into the Ruination because I don't want to bum everyone out, but there are lots of bummed out people already and I sort of feel ok about highlighting that as much as I love this season, it's a really rough time for some.

So three years ago my dad committed suicide. The 18th is his birthday, he did it on the 19th, and they didn't find him until the 21st which is also my birthday and solstice (which my boyfriend celebrates, as he is a pagan). My mother is emotionally abusive and I basically blame her, and and and… it's complicated and difficult. I haven't had much extended contact with that side of the family since, apart from my cousins, who I'm close to. It's just too painful. We had a family gathering of basically everyone this year, and I sobbed all the way home. I miss my dad and I miss my sister who is overseas.

It's totally fine. I mean, it sucks, but I've coped and processed and in a lot of ways it really made me stronger. But December is really rough, and I was really hoping to have enough extra energy to get into the season this year. December used to be my fave - it's my birthday, and christmas, and it's summer here so it's also family and bbqs and hanging with people I love. I've managed a fair amount of christmas cheer, but not as much as I'd hoped. I wanted to go look at the lights display in my old home town and listen to schmaltzy music but I'm just too tired from achieving the base level of functioning.

Next year, I guess? I do have lights and a tree with a pile of presents under it. And I am going to my sweetie's place for Solstice where I will hang out and be fed nice food and play computer games with his kids (I am a bit anxious about that, but wevs, I’ll ace it). And then I am not only going to the family Christmas for the first time properly (I just dropped in for an hour last year and then fled) but I am organising it.

So, what I want for Christmas is to spend it with my family, who I love despite them being oh, so painful sometimes :P I want my aunt to stop referring to my generation as 'the kids' (seriously, the youngest of us is 22, most of us have mortgages and my partner has teenaged kids. Wtf). I want my mother not to make a fuss because I am getting better at being strong with her and I don't want to have to either take crap from her or make a scene. And I want to go home and have a good refreshing cry, WITH my partner there because I have only cried in front of him once, and I need to cross that bridge. And also that way I get cuddles after.

EpWs

@Craftastrophies Wow, that is some heavy stuff to deal with on top of the holidays and all the stress they entail already. Props to you for not going into total hibernation mode and for the entire month--that takes some serious strength.

The good thing about hometowns and holiday lights and Christmas music is that they are always there. Every year. Promise. So they'll be there when you're ready and able to enjoy them. Hopefully next year! (That said, you've got two weeks left this season, you should hit some of that up.)

Don't sweat the kids--if they've been raised by someone you love and respect, who loves and respects you, they can't be all bad. :) You will ace it indeed.

And finally: don't be afraid to have a good cry with your dude, they are sometimes the best people to cry with. Because, yes, cuddles! Yay cuddles.

Sending all the good vibes I've got in your direction.

Craftastrophies

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher Aw, thanks :) It's mostly ok this year, but sometimes it is not, all of a sudden. And I am tiiiiired. I did not expect grief to be this tiring, I feel like I am walking around with weights on all my limbs. But, it's mostly ok so I feel pretty proud of how I'm doing.

Just got a message from my sweetie saying that we should go look at the holiday lights. But with his kids. I'm not sure how I feel about that. I might cry. But then again, it might be the greatest. So I'll have to think about it.

The kids are amazing, actually, but I have zero desire to parent them at all, which makes everything a lot easier (and them like me a lot more, I think - they HAVE a mother already, they don't need someone barging in) but that means I have to negotiate a whole new relationship with them. Am I a figure of authority or not? Answer, yes and no. NO HELP. Basically, it will be a bit confusing but also totally fine because they're great kids. Although their mother does all the same things as mine, but with extra crazy, so I have to be careful not to go on rants because that's not fair to them.

The dude is great about emotions (way better than me, we have definitely switched gender roles there), and I've talked about things and what I might need him to do if I do cry (don't ask me what's wrong or offer suggestions or even comforting words because I can't articulate anything and I find that distressing, just give me hugs and then I might need to talk after). I HATE crying, and I hate crying in front of people, but I think it's important that he not be People in this context.

Basically, it will all be fine, but probably not fun. But that's ok, I can do it all fine, and then I have another week of holiday to enjoy myself properly.

EpWs

@Craftastrophies ...and by "enjoy yourself properly" you mean "get qrunk," right?

Craftastrophies

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher N...no?

Ok. Yes. But I am doing that starting Friday when I finish work. Woo coping mechanism! I decided on the way home that I'm going to go see the sparkly lights, and if it gives me emotions then that's fine. The emotional abuse thing means I get super anxious about showing emotions because then they're used against you. But I've gotten so much better about that whole thing, so fuck it! I will be fine. Thanks for the encouragement. :D

EpWs

@Craftastrophies Qrunk in moderation, of course. Go see the sparkly things! Feel emotions! Get hugs! You will be fine.

(I'm coming off eight straight hours of essay writing, so if I seem a little disjointed, that's why. The sentiment is here, but the brainpower is not.)

Craftastrophies

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher If I say I'm going to get 'qreamed', does that mean something different?

Is the essay done? If so, high FIVE! If not, commiserations.

EpWs

@Craftastrophies Potentially. I would avoid using it in mixed company until the proper usage has been determined.

And no, not done--I was 18 pages in last night when I made the executive decision to crash and finish it today. Due at 3, probably about seven pages to go. Back to it.

Craftastrophies

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher You can do it! And then it will be done and you won't have to think about it!

julies

I would really like a gift card to Bering's for Christmas. I am in love with their coffee! http://www.berings.com/Category/266-coffee-menu.aspx

Alixana

I survived my scary camera-down-throat heart test! Thanks again to all of you who shared your experiences with such things a few weeks ago. It was not too bad at all although I woke up a bit too early from the twilight sedation and got a good look at the giant tube in my throat, which I could have done without. Then some of my lovely friends spent the afternoon with me drinking milkshakes and watching movies, and I am feeling really quite blessed to have access to such excellent medical care and such excellent friends. And to the wisdom and kindness of all of you!

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