Please Stop “Vaguebooking!”

Warning: rant ahead. Read at the risk of getting pissed off.

People, you have to stop “vaguebooking.” For those of you who might not know what this term means, it is “An intentionally vague Facebook status update that prompts friends to ask what’s going on, or is possibly a cry for help.” (Courtesy of www.UrbanDictionary.com.)

Before some of you get your knickers in a knot, I get where “vaguebooking” when used as advance marketing tool builder of excitement for a product launch or an advertising campaign for a company is semi-acceptable (although some of them can be downright annoying due to repetitiveness). It’s the “I don’t know what I’m going to do!” type of posts that leave the reader hanging, not knowing what the person who posted that sentence is going through. When I see comments like that it creates within me a sense of urgency and anxiety – as if the poster is going through something horrible or may need real help. Then three posts and fifteen minutes later they write, “Phew! Turns out it was just a bad spark plug that made the car not start this morning.” I mean, wtf people? I thought you were going through some life or death situation, not having crappy car problems! Meanwhile, myself and 132+ others have been worrying ourselves needlessly over you.

The other “vaguebooking” posts that totally suck are ones like “Something awesome just happened! So excited!” or “This is huge! Can’t wait to share!” Really? You should have waited to share your big news WHEN you knew for sure it was REAL news. (Don’t get me started on ‘fake news’ or I’ll be here all day.)

I’m happy that your company is releasing a new and improved (although they can’t be both of those items at once) type of adult diaper, or that you’ve reinvented a better mosquito trap that humanely captures and releases the little buggers outside via a reverse vacuum system. I get that you want to sell us these items by creating a big hoopla about their eventual release into the unsuspecting psyche of the buying public by creating a buzz (pun intended) before launch day. But those of you who deliberately and habitually practice “vaguebooking” need to get over your love of creating drama at the expense of having the rest of us worry for nothing.

Because if you don’t, one of these days you might just cry “wolf” … and no one will come to your rescue.

Carry a Bag, Doofwad!

Max with bowl July 16 12 adjHey you! Yeah, you. The guy who walks by my house every day with that cute little white-haired doggie. YOU, sir, are the reason why dog owners who walk their precious pooches get a bad rap!

This past Saturday, I saw you walk by my house on the opposite side of the street with your dog. Said dog walked up on the neighbour’s lawn, did the usual ‘circle’ dance, and then proceeded to do a #2 business. Now that in itself isn’t unusual because when you gotta go, you gotta go, right? It’s what happened next that made me want to reach out and smack you – the owner, not the dog!

Did you calmly reach into your jeans pocket to retrieve a doggie doo-doo bag? No… Were you carrying a left-over grocery store bag or perhaps even a sandwich bag with which to collect the afore-mentioned # 2 drop? No… You just calmly kept walking with Fido after he/she/it was finished. I mean, what the hell dude?

Then, to make matters worse, you walked to the top of the street and then came back down on MY side of it. My friend and I were standing in my garage when you and your pooch paused at the end of my driveway. She, being more vocal than myself (yes, folks it IS possible that someone is more outspoken than I am!), hollered out to you, “Hey buddy! Would you like a bag so you can go pick up your dog’s crap on the lawn across the street?” You never even acknowledged her – just kept your head down and walked away.

This morning as I was taking my fur-baby out for our morning saunter, guess who is stopped at the end of my driveway? Yup, you guessed it – Mr. “I-don’t-pick-up-dog-crap” and his pooch. I turned to my own dog and said, “Think we’ll wait a few minutes before walking today, Maxster” and you heard my voice as you looked right at me. (Actually I think you were glaring at me but I wasn’t 100% awake so really couldn’t tell for sure.)

I gave you a good five minute head start, but you and your dog were only about 5 cement walk blocks ahead of me when we set out. And did I see any type of bag in your hands? Nope. Hanging perhaps out of the back pocket of your jeans? Nada.

It’s people like YOU, dipstick, that give dog owners like ME a bad reputation!

I know that Mercury is going into retrograde as of today and perhaps that’s why I’m so ticked off at this common occurrence, but seriously, people. If you’re going to take Fifi or Fido out for a walk, be considerate enough to carry a plastic bag of some sort with you in case nature calls so you don’t have to leave an unwanted ‘gift’ on someone else’s property.

Arrgghh…  Some people’s children…

Why Bounty is THE Strongest (and Best) Paper Towel

Dear Proctor & Gamble;

While I sincerely doubt the story about Bounty paper towel that I’m about to relate to you will ever make it into one of your marketing/advertising campaigns, I’m certain that someone in your company will definitely get a chuckle out of this true story.

I’ve used only Bounty paper towels for years now as I truly find them to be strong, durable and very absorbent. However, I’d never envisioned them to be as ‘tough’ as they proved to be in this recent, shall we say, ‘crappy’ situation.

First, a bit of background.

Max with bowl July 16 12 adjMeet Max – our 2 year old Havenese/Shih Tzu mixed male fur-child. Max is an over-curious, spoiled rotten, ‘baby’ who has a propensity to make the 5 second rule of anything dropping on the floor being edible look supremely stupid. He eats everything… and I do mean EVERYTHING, that comes into his line of vision or near his superior sniffing skilled nose. His steel-trap teeth and muscles around his mouth require that the Jaws of Life need to be utilized to remove anything from his oral cavity if we deem what he’s eating as inappropriate. To say we often fail to successfully remove what’s in his mouth is a gross understatement, as both my husband and I are rather fond of our fingers and fear the loss of same. But I digress.

A couple of weeks ago, my hubby and I had just finished our dinner while watching the evening news. As he often does, hubby had grabbed a section of Bounty paper towel to use as a napkin while eating. We were both so engrossed in the program that we failed to pick up the used Bounty paper towel when we took our dishes to the kitchen. In what must have been no more than 4 minutes, we went back to the livingroom to finish the program, only to discover Max enthusiastically chewing on something while sitting on the couch. Uh oh, this spelled trouble. My hubby grabbed Max and held on to his mid-section while I set about prying apart those Tyrannosaurus Rex teeth of his to see what he was eating. When I finally managed to get his mouth open, I saw the last little piece of the Bounty paper towel disappearing down into his esophagus. Bam! Gone… but not forgotten. You see, Max had to have surgery at our veterinarian (who is on speed dial by the way), a year prior due to an obstruction being found in his intestines. It turned out to be yards and yards of ‘string’ he’d consumed from chew-toys, all compressed into a small ball of indistinguishable content.  So you can imagine my concern over Max swallowing a full half-sheet of Bounty in one gulp.

Then began the ‘wait until he poops’ vigil.

Day one – nothing. Just your regular, average outside call of nature. However, day two brought on the “Bounty is Better” scenario.

Hubby had taken Max out to do his morning ‘constitutional’ while I lay still comfy in our bed, snoozing off and on. From the back door, I heard my hubby holler, “Sweetie, I need your help!” so I knew something was up with one of the dogs. (We also have a 10 year old West Highland Terrier, Angel, who tolerates Max as SHE was here first!) Judging by the tone of his voice I knew one of the dogs most likely had a messy bum but what I saw when I reached the back door was truly astounding. There was my hubby crouched down beside Max who was in a half-sitting, half-standing position… with something off-white protruding from his butt. The words “OMG! Has he already gone for a # 2?” came flying out of my mouth as I stared in disbelief as what looked like the Bounty paper towel, hanging from Max’s bum. “You won’t believe this”, said hubby, “But he’s already gone… and now there’s this thing stuck there!” I grabbed another sheet of Bounty and gingerly started pulling on the protuberance to see if I could dislodge it intact. And upon removal, sure enough – there was the FULL sheet of Bounty that Max had eaten TWO days prior, still in one piece! No pieces were missing, no fibers had disintegrated – nothing!

I relayed this story to my vet who after hysterically laughing herself to the point of tears said that I had to write and tell you about this incident as it was just too amazing (and rather funny to boot!)

I can now say without a doubt that Bounty paper towels are definitely the strongest, most durable product on the market. Unfortunately, I can now also lay claim to the fact that I most likely have the world’s only dog who has umm… crapped AND wiped his butt simultaneously.

PS – Response received from P&G, Tuesday, July 30th, 2013.

Thanks for contacting P&G, Marlene!

We appreciate your interest in our products and the time you’ve taken to share your feedback. While we’re grateful for your efforts, we’re unable to accept unsolicited advertising ideas or suggestions. We rely on our employees or the agencies we hire to create and handle our advertising. We hope you understand.

Thanks again for writing!

Kelly

P&G Team

 

“Ground Black People?” – Best Gaff of the Week

j0178843Call me sick, call me totally whacko, but I thought I’d crack up laughing this morning when I read an AP posting entitled, “Cookbook pulped over ‘ground black people’ typo.” First off, I wondered why the writer had inserted the word ‘pulped’ into the title of the column. Were they trying to be cutesy and use a play on words, or did the actual headline include a typo as well? Had they meant to say, “Cookbook PULLED over ‘ground black people’ typo?” 

Then I went on to read the article itself and that’s when I started silently snickering. Apparently the “Pasta Bible” recipe for spelt tagliatelle, (a hardy wheat type of pasta, and yes, I had to look that up!), with sardines and prosciutto, was supposed to call for black pepper, not ‘ground black people.’    

Aha! Now ground pepper makes much more sense to me than the appalling bad typo ingredient. 

This story reminded me of a bad cooking experience I had about 20 years ago. One Christmas I decided I’d make my Dad’s favourite dessert, namely my Mom’s recipe for Suet Pudding. (Don’t start gagging here folks – stick with me on this!) It was a fairly complicated pudding; I was in a hurry; and when I’d originally copied down the recipe from my Mom’s original tattered and batter-stained recipe card, I missed one crucial ingredient: baking powder. 

Anyhow, this lovely concoction was steaming gently away, balanced precariously on a smaller pot inserted into a larger one filled with boiling water while I served the Christmas main course to the crowd. Now came the time to serve the piece de resistance, the Suet Pudding. (I’d also made apple pies for those of you who still have your face screwed up over the thought of eating suet.) 

I removed the wonderfully aromatic pudding from the pot and instantly my eye’s register that something is really amiss: the pudding is still only about 2” thick instead of the lovely light and airy 6” version by Mom used to serve. My Dad gamely polished off a large portion of what I called, “Steamed brick on a plate,” but later that night after the hubbub of the day had ended, I had to figure out what I’d done wrong. Going back over the recipe, I couldn’t see any baking powder in the list, and I know that without that one tiny ingredient, you’ll always have pancake flat, ‘looks like lead’ cakes.

Moral of the story? Read everything you write at least THREE times before you publish it or try to cook from it! 

Oh… and here’s the link to the ‘ground black people’ gaff if you’d like to read the rest of the article:  http://bit.ly/9B73rB

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