Beware the robot blog spam furthermore produce?

These are, verbatim, the most recent spam comments on my blog. I don’t know enough about phishing scams or bad people to understand if these constitute effective strategies. But I think they’re hysterical.

1. Dirt mounds and rock piles can way too indicate the status of a cesspool. Warranted Success: What to produce people happy?

2. M., than it is to I-70 and furthermore Grand Junction, Colo. Artists put on a variety of materials and resources for creating statues.

3. It provides two to help deploy the software package. Place on towards the exact tragedy of being for that life of your levels and characters.

4. These kind images can be found painted musically throughout the watch. Chances akin to inheriting just very own kind of adoration music are unusual.

5. Every individual has the to claim insurance benefits. Every party would feel that your ex boyfriend or she might be entitled to this specific and that.

6. These items are maintaining these data’s for long run use. It inspires an individual to improve the fine quality of his deliver the results and become good than others.

I guess by reading and sharing these, I’m not really helping the cause, but I so want to meet the person (or robot software) that generates these, give him or her (or it) a lot of booze, and see what kinds of creative genius we can create.

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the melodramatic silver lining

I took my car in today to have one of my tires looked at after noticing a small hole in it yesterday. Turned out I had pretty severe damage, which was covered by a warranty I don’t even remember purchasing. While I was there the tire “guys” noticed I had a nail in a different tire they also were able to repair, saving me another trip in.

We’re under contract on a new house – a perfect house – and recently went through the inspection period. Turns out there are a lot of issues that require some serious repairs. We spent a fair amount of money to have a slew of experts check it out, and now may be faced with deciding whether we’ll even be able to move forward, or just retreat and swallow our losses.

This past weekend we were supposed to be out of town with a group of 20 friends, but had to cancel at the last minute. Because we stayed in town, we had an amazing weekend with family that unexpectedly came into town and friends we hardly ever see.

Tonight I drove halfway to my sister-in-law’s dance performance, only to realize its actually tomorrow. Now I’m in the backyard, writing and reading, enjoying a freakishly cool, breezy evening in May.

It’s been a weirdass few days with a lot to deal with, but I think these sorts of inconveniences and challenges are usually blessings in disguise.

If I hadn’t noticed the damage to my tire, I could’ve had a dangerous blowout on the freeway. If we didn’t pay to have detailed home inspections, we would have ended up with tens of thousands of dollars in surprise expenses. If we’d gone out of town we wouldn’t have had a chance to see Jim’s grandma and cousins. And if I hadn’t mistakenly planned to attend a dance recital, I would be inside working, instead of enjoying the evening on the back porch.

Sometimes, the place you least want to be is the best one. There’s usually a silver lining you’d miss if you hadn’t taken a detour.

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Chain of Irrelevant Thoughts

If you came over to my house tonight here’s what I’d tell you.

A roofer, a plumber and an electrician walk into a bar. The roofer turns to the plumber and says, “Have you ever gotten a frantic call from an almost-thirty-year-old at 8 a.m., demanding you visit a property the next day?” The plumber acknowledges that he had, in fact, received such a call. Lo and behold–the electrician had too! Welcome to my morning. Adventures in home inspections.

Did you know version 84 of Now That’s What I Call Music! was released this year. Yeah. Chew on that.

When you get married, everyone tells you that you should never go to bed angry. This is well intended but terrible advice. There comes a point when the best thing to do is to just get some sleep. Emotions are high, feelings are bruised, and going to bed is the best way to collect your thoughts without resorting to violence.

There is no anti-anxiety medicine in the world that can help a person watch the movie Flight without FLIPPING OUT.

I had to take my iPhone into the Apple store today to get a replacement. It took about 25 minutes to update and restore my settings, during which I was told to sit at a table to wait. It has been a long, LONG time since I’ve had to sit still, alone, without my phone as a distraction. I was in time out. It was really uncomfortable, but allowed me to tune into everything around me, that I presumably zone out on a regular basis. Without this cause for pause, I would’ve overlooked the abundance of hipster employees assisting technologically challenged senior citizens.

When is Homeland coming back? Seriously.

It’s been just under 10 weeks since my wrist surgery and I can’t imagine being any happier with the results of a medical procedure. I want to be in commercials for my surgeon’s practice. I can do painless dips and pushups for the first time in six years. I catch myself instinctively favoring my wrist even when it doesn’t hurt, out of habit. That’s a good habit to break.

Our trip to Asia happens in t-minus six weeks. I am irrationally excited. This will mark the eight and ninth countries my brother and I have been to together and the seventh and eighth for Jim and me. So rad.

I spent a solid 45 minutes on the City of Phoenix planning and zoning website this week. I was confused and fascinated and I never need to have this experience again.

I am so sad for Oklahoma. I was there once for a mere seven hours for a work trip. The devastation is unfathomable. The amazing amount of kindness and donations pouring in from across the country is the only possible silver lining on an awful situation.

On a near-daily basis I debate whether I should be following Kim Kardashian on Instagram.

 

Bigger and Faster Only Matters with Monster Trucks

My high school weight room had the words, “Bigger, Faster, Stronger” emblazoned across the walls in huge, paint-stenciled letters. It was a motto for the football team’s weight-training program, but the remaining 99.4 percent of the student body that wasn’t on the team also was subjected to this ridiculous mantra in gym class. Incidentally, it’s also the name of a 2008 documentary film about the use of anabolic steroids as performance-enhancing drugs. Draw your own conclusions.

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I remember thinking that we’d probably be better off as a student body (and a society) if we adorned the walls with something like, “Smarter, Kinder, Friendlier.” But alas, I attended a microcosm of Varsity Blues where athletics—particularly football—ruled the ranks.

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I’ve always had a hard time with the mentality that we must always push for more, more, more. Bigger is better. Faster is cooler. Stronger is power.

It makes sense in theory, especially if you drive monster trucks or are assembling an army, but it often takes more strength to know when to step back from a situation than it does to persevere to a dangerous point. The best athletes are those who work tirelessly, but also listen to their bodies and take breaks when they need to recover.

This is a part of yoga that I love the most. Yoga teaches that it’s important to reassess how you’re feeling in every class, regardless of whether you’re a rookie or an expert practitioner. Some days things aren’t in synch, or we’re tired, or healing from an injury, and we need to sit out some of the more challenging portions. No matter the reason, yoga embraces the philosophy that it takes more strength to know when take a break than it does to push yourself carelessly.

But the ability to discern when to keep going and when to hang out in child’s pose is tough. We’re wired from a young age to strive for everything we can imagine, or risk the F word. For years I was terrified of failing or not meeting the expectations of others. It impacted how I made big decisions and caused me a lot of unneeded stress.

Among the blessings of getting older is an awareness that failure is far more complicated that a simple win or loss. It’s just a sign that another way or a different time might be better.

Giving Thanks on Mother’s Day

Mom,

Thank you for showing me what it means to be a strong woman. To speak up when needed and never get pushed around. I rarely hesitate to speak my mind–sometimes to an excess–but it’s saved me more than once and I value having the confidence to do this without fear of what others may think.

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Thank you for not letting me wear short shorts or skimpy tank tops in high school, even when I threw fits and swore up and down that everyone else’s parents let them do it. I see young girls today wearing clothes that are far too revealing and now I get it. I know that I can flatter my body without actually revealing it.

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Thank you for teaching me to appreciate the arts. For taking me to the theater, symphony and ballet, and encouraging my pursuits of art and music.

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Thank you for recognizing that as a quiet child, horseback riding was my passion and the key to my confidence. You gave your time, money and likely your sanity to support me and travel with me; looking back I can’t imagine what a commitment this was and I will always value your sacrifices.

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Thank you for being my cheerleader. You’ve always been the first to help celebrate my successes and it’s made them even sweeter.

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Thank you for getting mad at me when I did dumb things as a teenager and said hurtful things out of anger (or hormones??). Without consequences I wouldn’t have learned to be accountable.

Thank you for letting me cry when my heart was broken, and for sharing my joy when I fell in love.

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Thank you for loving Jim and welcoming him into our family with all your heart.

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Thank you for not abandoning Dan and me when we were the world’s most annoying teenagers and threatened to kill each other on a regular basis. You told us we’d be friends one day and you were right.

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Thank you for making the job of being our mom your greatest joy and focus. You’ve never failed to nurture us, support us and love us unconditionally. Your love is a gift I will always cherish and will undoubtedly pass on to my children.

Screen Shot 2013-05-13 at 8.36.14 PMI love you.

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Kids don’t even know what film is.

Yesterday I saw a commercial for Sprint that stated, among other things, that more photos are taken on iPhones everyday than on any other camera. I don’t have a clue how this statistic was substantiated, and sort of feel bad that it’s anyone’s job to figure that out.

I picture a bunch of camera researchers (you know that job exists) sitting around a conference room in glasses and white lab coats reviewing pages and pages of data. Desperation engulfs the room as the team fails to draw any factual conclusions. Then quietly, one brave soul simply shrugs and meekly whispers, “Come on you guys, it’s obvious. No one uses their regular cameras anymore. Kids don’t even know what film is.”

It’s a cultural pandemic and I LOVE it.

If you’d told me back in high school that within a decade my cell would fit in my pocket and take better digital photos than anything I’d find at Best Buy, I would not have believed you. But behold, the smartphone!

Anyway.

I take photos obsessively, and the world keeps giving me more ways to forcefully share them with others who may or may not want to see them. So whose fault is it, really? Those filters on Instagram aren’t going to use themselves, for crying out loud. We’ve been subliminally coerced into hyper-documenting our lives under the guise of an artistic pursuit.

I love documenting the little things that make life entertaining and unique. I’m home sick today and started sorting through the  hundreds of photos on my iPhone. I came across some great memories and hysterical moments I’d forgotten about.

Here’s a selection of what I found today:

1. Tomorrow is Michelle’s birthday. I sent her flowers. The florist decided to change my name from ‘Jess’ to ‘Jeff’ on the card, and this photo was how she told me.

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2. This text conversation that occurred after a recent cross-country flight. I’m creepy, I know that. But still.

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3. On Cinco de Mayo I ran into the Dos Equis man at the grocery store.

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4. Facetime brings the iPhone’s camera goodness to new heights. Like, for instance, when you and your friend force your dogs to interact while thousands of miles apart, because that’s normal.

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5. The moment when we understood we’d made a poor choice in restaurants, because we were the only two people in a completely empty dining room.

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6. Neighborhood lemonade stands that my husband insists we support.

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7. Realizing we may have over prepared for a three-night camping trip because no people could fit in the vehicle.

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8. The all-knowing wisdom of Words with Friends #yankeessuck

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9. The art of healthy snacking.

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10. Coffee predators.

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11. Looking back while moving forward.

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12. Dogs who offer moral and physical support.

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13. Blood donation entertainment and distraction.

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