Johnny Goodtimes Comedy Showcase

Just putting in a plug for The Man…if you’re in the area, it will be a great show for Father’s Day!

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The Goodbye Letter

**disclaimer** I don’t know if this really belongs here, on this blog. I don’t know if I will leave it up. I wrote this several years ago, after one of my dearest friends in the world was killed serving his country. I hope it might speak to others who have had to give someone up for ‘the greater good.’

Dearest Michael:

     I was driving down the road today, and one of our old songs started to play. And suddenly it hit me: you’re really gone. I had to pull over to the side of the road, the tears coming so fast I couldn’t see. Suddenly I was with you again, sitting on the roof of your apartment. Glasses of chianti and that old beat up stereo playing Janis Joplin all night long. Listening to the ball game from across the street, with the orange line rumbling under us. Walking down those narrow stairs to your door, warm and giddy from the wine. Sinking onto the hardwood floor in front of you as you picked out old show tunes on that beautiful guitar. Finally crawling into bed as the sun came up, pulling the down comforter up tight.
     Do you remember the day we went out on John’s boat? Sailing around Lake Michigan, trying to catch something? Then you finally got a bite, and we were laughing so hard we dropped the net before we landed the fish? Standing at the bow of the boat, wrapped in your giant green sweater and watching the sun go down? That night we went to the Blue Note and made the band keep playing the same song over and over? All of these images came flooding into my heart and mind, a torrent so powerful it seemed it would tear me apart.
     I remember the mornings when I’d wake up and roll over to find you gone, just a note on the mirror. You’d disappear for days, weeks sometimes with no word. And then appear again one night, crawling into bed next to me. Just wanting to be held, that haunted look in your eye. Time would pass, and it would go away, but I knew it wouldn’t be long before work called you away again. That’s why I couldn’t marry you, you know–I couldn’t bear to share you like that.
     I still play our game, you know. Every time I see a plane take off, I start making up the stories: she’s going to meet her lover. He’s off to see his newborn grandson. The woman in first class is terrified to fly, but she’s off to meet her online love for the first time. It’s a habit with me now, along with so many other little things that we used to do.
So this is for you: the man who was my friend, my lover, and then my friend again. The first man to ever treat me as something truly special. The world will never know your story, and what an amazing man it lost. There will be no nightly news broadcasts about your heroism. The people that you died to protect will never hear your name. And your funeral will be small…just the brothers you served with in attendance. The only thing that comforts me is knowing that your coma was so deep that you never suffered. You never awoke to see the horror that had been done to you. For that , I’m grateful.
     John called me, told me about the service. He said when he was looking for your watch he came upon a tattered green sweater. And wrapped inside it was a framed picture. It was us, as well you know, standing on the bow of the boat, watching the sun go down. I never knew John took it. He promises me that he’ll place it in your casket, along with this letter. So this is my eulogy for you. You who watched me from afar, who never forgot what we had. You kept me safe, you kept me loved. And now that you’re gone, there is a hole in my heart that I don’t think will ever heal. I will always love you, my dearest. Know that you are missed.

me

Until?

     We convince ourselves that life will be better after we get married, have a baby, then another. Then we are frustrated that the kids aren’t old enough and we’ll be more content when they are. After that, we’re frustrated that we have teenagers to deal with. We will certainly be happy when they are out of that stage. We tell ourselves that our life will be complete when our spouse gets his or her act together, when we get a nicer car, when we are able to go on a nice vacation or when we retire. The truth is there’s no better time to be happy than right now. If not now, when? Your life will always be filled with challenges. It’s best to admit this to yourself and decide to be happy anyway. Happiness is the way. So, treasure every moment that you have and treasure it more because you shared it with someone special, special enough to spend your time with … and remember that time waits for no one.

 So, stop waiting .

 Until your car or home is paid off.

 Until you get a new car or home.

 Until your kids leave the house.

 Until you go back to school.

 Until you finish school.

 Until you lose 10 lbs.

 Until you gain 10 lbs.

 Until you get married.

Until you get a divorce.

Until you have kids.

 Until you retire.

 Until summer.. Until spring. Until winter. Until fall.

 Until you die.

     There is no better time than right now to be happy. Happiness is a journey, not a destination. So work like you don’t need the money, love like you’ve never been hurt and dance like no one is watching.

What Horror Movies Have Taught Us

When it appears that you have killed the monster, never check to see if it’s really dead.

 If you find that your house is built upon or near a cemetery, was once a church that was used for black masses, had previous inhabitants who went mad or committed suicide or died in some horrible fashion, or had inhabitants who performed satanic practices in your house–move away immediately!

Never read a book of demon summoning aloud, even as a joke. Do not search the basement, especially if the power has just gone out.

If your children speak to you in Latin or any other language which they should not know, or if they speak to you using a voice which is other than their own, shoot them immediately. It will save you a lot of grief in the long run. NOTE: It will probably take several rounds to kill them, so be prepared.

When you have the benefit of numbers, never pair off and go alone.

 As a general rule, don’t solve puzzles that open portals to Hell.

Never stand in, on, above, below, beside, or anywhere near a grave, tomb, crypt, mausoleum, or other house of the dead.

If you’re searching for something which caused a noise and find out that it’s just the cat, leave the room immediately if you value your life.

 If appliances start operating by themselves, move out.

 Do not take anything from the dead.

If you find a town which looks deserted, it’s probably for a reason. Take the hint and stay away.

 Don’t fool with recombinant DNA technology unless you’re sure you know what you are doing.

 If you’re running from the monster, expect to trip or fall down at least twice, more if you are of the female persuasion. Also note that, despite the fact that you are running and the monster is merely shambling along, it’s still moving fast enough to catch up with you.

If your companions suddenly begin to exhibit uncharacteristic behavior such as hissing, fascination for blood, glowing eyes, increasing hairiness, and so on, get away from them as fast as possible.

 Stay away from certain geographical locations, some of which are listed here: Amityville, Elm Street, Transylvania, Nilbog (you’re in trouble if you recognize this one), the Bermuda Triangle, or any small town in Maine.

 If your car runs out of gas at night, do not go to the nearby deserted-looking house to phone for help.

 Beware of strangers bearing tools such as chainsaws, staple guns, hedge trimmers, electric carving knives, combines, lawnmowers, butane torches, soldering irons, band saws, or any device made from deceased companions.

In Honor of Stupid People

In case you needed further proof that the human race is doomed to stupidity, here are some actual label instructions on consumer goods:
On a Sears hairdryer — Do not use while sleeping. (Shoot, and that’s the only time I have to work on my hair.) On a bag of Fritos — You could be a winner! No purchase necessary. Details inside. (the shoplifter special)?
On a bar of Dial soap — “Directions: Use like regular soap,” (and that would be how???….)
On some Swanson frozen dinners — “Serving suggestion: Defrost.” (but, it’s “just” a suggestion).
On Tesco’s Tiramisu dessert (printed on bottom) — “Do not turn upside down.” (well…duh, a bit late, huh)!
On Marks & Spencer Bread Pudding — “Product will be hot after heating.” (…and you thought????…)
On packaging for a Rowena iron — “Do not iron clothes on body.” (but wouldn’t this save me more time)?
On Boot’s Children Cough Medicine — “Do not drive a car or operate machinery after taking this medication.” (We could do a lot to reduce the rate of construction accidents if we could just get those 5-year-olds with head-colds off those forklifts.)
On Nytol Sleep Aid — “Warning: May cause drowsiness.” (and…I’m taking this because???….)
On most brands of Christmas lights — “For indoor or outdoor use only.” (as opposed to…what)?
On a Japanese food processor — “Not to be used for the other use.” (now, somebody out there, help me on this. I’m a bit curious)
On Sainsbury’s peanuts — “Warning: contains nuts.” (talk about a news flash)
On an American Airlines packet of nuts — “Instructions: Open packet, eat nuts.” (Step 3: maybe, ooh…fly Delta?)
On a child’s Superman costume — “Wearing of this garment does not enable you to fly.” (I don’t blame the company. I blame the parents for this one.)
On a Swedish chainsaw — “Do not attempt to stop chain with your hands or genitals.” (Oh my ..was there a lot of this happening somewhere?)

Now that you’ve smiled at least once, it’s your turn to spread the stupidity.

Swagbucks :)

I don’t normally promote websites, especially ones that promise something for nothing, but I feel like I have to make mention of Swagbucks. I’m sure at least some of you have seen posts on Twitter or Facebook with a proud ” Ms X just won 9 Swagbucks!” After seeing enough of them, I asked my Tweeps what was up with Swagbucks. Here’s the deal.
You earn Swagbucks by searching the Internet. You can do this from their homepage, or from the Swagbucks toolbar ( you earn bucks for downloading that, too.) That’s it. Instead of using google or bing or yahoo as your search engine, you use swagbucks. You’ll randomly be awarded bucks. You can also earn bucks by taking surveys, daily polls, trading in old cells phones/games/mp3’s, referring friends, and downloading the toolbar and widget. It’s so easy it’s almost brainless. I’ve earned nearly 700 bucks just this week!
Trading in your Swagbucks for cool stuff is easy, too. Aim for something small (a $5 giftcard to Amazon is less than 500 bucks) or save up thousands for a PS3 or other big ticket electronic item. The bucks are free, Swagcodes for extra bucks abound, and it doesn’t require you to do anything other than search. Pretty cool, huh? Check it out below!

Search & Win

Lets Talk About Co-Sleeping

I want to talk about co-sleeping. When I was pregnant with my oldest, sleep sharing wasn’t something I considered doing. I had heard the horror stories of babies suffocated and squished, and to be honest I thought it a little odd to not want your child in his own crib, and in his own room. When baby Gryphon was born, he spent the first few weeks of his life in a bassinet at the foot of our bed. I’d wake when he cried, nurse him to sleep by the glow of an infomercial, and then place him back into his little bed. I actually awoke in a panic numerous times those first weeks, convinced I had “forgot” him and he was suffocating in my sheets!
By eight weeks old, G was a champion sleeper with consistent 6 to 8 hour stretches at night. He was also in a crib, in his own room. I never really felt sleep deprived. He was a mellow, laid back baby. I had the freedom to nap during the day when he did, and Darling Husband was very hands on with the little guy.
Fast forward eighteen months when I delivered my daughter Zoe. G man was 20 months old, an active toddler, but still a great sleeper. I’d put him to bed about seven at night, and he’d sleep through until seven the next morning. Zoe, on the other hand? Not so much.
Z was what Dr. Sears refers to as a “high need” baby. It’s also what my husband called “demanding,” “stubborn,” and “annoying.” The princess wanted what she wanted, she wanted it ten minutes ago, and how DARE you not have read her mind? She wanted to be held, rocked, worn, and with you constantly. Neither the swing or the bouncy chair soothed her long. She was a frequent snacker at the breast, and I swear she didn’t sleep more than two hours at a stretch until she was six months old. I was exhausted. To make matters worse for me, the better half had started a job that had him traveling. A lot. Like, five days a week. I was losing it.
Then, one night, something happened. I brought Z to bed by the light of the tv to nurse, and I FELL ASLEEP! With my baby. In bed. You know what? I didn’t kill her. What happened instead was that I slept. And she slept. And when I woke up in the morning after SIX consecutive hours of sleep, I felt like I could rule the world. I felt like I had discovered some huge secret. Zoe wanted to be close to me. When she was, she was calm and happy. When she wasn’t … well — no one was happy.
I “pretended” that I has fallen asleep nursing her to anyone that asked. And yes, yes … I’ll teach her to sleep in her own crib soon. We all know if I don’t move her now, she’ll never learn to sleep alone. The truth was that I loved sleeping with her. Being woken up in the morning to little pats on the face and smiles was fantastic. Often she would nurse at night and I would stir just enough to give her easier access before we’d both drift back off. I was no longer resentful of my own child!
When three years later our third child Drake arrived, life was even more hectic. My husband was seven months post stroke and still adapting to the loss of use in his right arm and leg. We had been forced to uproot the family and move half way across the country. I had some complications with Drakes delivery, and as a result had severe post partum depression, anxiety, and PTSD. Drake had been born with a clubfoot and was undergoing weekly castings that left him miserable and inconsolable for days Co sleeping was my savior, and Drakes. When it all got too much we’d lie down in the dark together,alone, and comfort each other I didn’t even pretend to want to put him in a crib.
Before we lost our last pregnancy, I had posted on Facebook that I was painting the nursery. That post drew a comment that I really resented. It read “Who are you kidding? Your babies always sleep in your room, and even in your BED!” Needless to say this is a person who has made it clear previously that she disapproves of co sleeping.
If I hadn’t been so upset and unwilling to start a war on my Facebook page, this is what I would have said:

“Why would you expect an infant to be held and loved all day, and then ignored at night? Doesn’t it feel odd to sleep in your bed when your husband (or partner) is away? Aren’t you lonely? In countries all over the world a family bed and sleep sharing is considered the norm. If it works for me, and it works for my family, then why are you so against it?”

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