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February, 2014

  1. The Shit Turtle: A Family Heirloom

    February 23, 2014 by C.

    Climb on board!

    Climb on board!





    As a Christmas gift one year, my great-grandfather made a wooden turtle for each of us. He was a shoe cobbler (if you have no idea what that is, Google it) and he was very handy with tools. The turtle’s body was in one piece and the legs and head were screwed on. The wooden back was covered in carpet and was just the right size for a child to sit on. We quickly discovered the turtle was also strong enough for us to stand on and then jump off of it, which made it even more fun to play with.

    My great-grandfather had long since passed away when one of my aunt’s children had used the turtle to stand on while brushing her teeth and had forgotten it. For whatever reason, my aunt decided to use it to prop up her feet while going to the bathroom. She found that the turtle made going #2 much easier and thus the “shit turtle” was born.

    As I got older and was living on my own, the turtle was simply used as a footstool. Then one day in my late twenties, I became constipated for the first time in my life. I tried every remedy other than taking laxatives that was out there. It didn’t work. Then I remembered back to my aunt and her experience with the shit turtle. It was worth a try.

    The turtle worked, my friends. It was at that point I started using the turtle more frequently. I even came up with a special place for the turtle to sit. It was now an honored member of my family.

    I moved several times and during one of my moves, the turtle was dropped and a leg was broken off. I tried to use wood glue and re-attach his leg. It just would not stay on. It was with deep regret, I threw my turtle in the trash (at that time I did not know the full story of the shit turtle).

    Oh, how I missed my turtle. I sunk so low, that at one point I even tried to steal my sister’s. No one wanted to be without their shit turtle. For whatever reason, the thought of using a normal foot stool never crossed my mind. It just wouldn’t be the same.

    I have shared this story over the years with a few of my friends and one year as a Christmas gift, I received a small white foot stool, which was given to me as a replacement for the shit turtle. I just laughed and used it as a table for my sleep apnea machine. There was no replacing the turtle.

    But one day I got desperate. I don’t like being uncomfortable in that way at all. I had just finished eating raw pumpkin (something I saw on Pinterest) and it wasn’t working. I threw all my sleep apnea equipment on the floor and gave it a try. It was a bit too high compared to the turtle, but it worked.

    My mom recently brought over this catalog with items for aging consumers. She thought she was being funny, because I am only 42, but I’m falling apart. I flipped a few pages into it and some of the items actually did look appealing to me. Then I got to page 43 and what do I see???




    That’s right. The “Re-Lax Toilet Footrest, it converts your modern toilet into the most natural position for healthy elimination—the squat”. I love the inset of the cartoon figure assuming the position as a demonstration.  The best part is they are selling for $39 plus shipping. I should have been manufacturing shit turtles in my garage for years. I would have been rich by now!

    I can’t help but to think of Pa working away, making these turtles by hand with love. He passed away when I was only 3-years-old, so I didn’t really know him, but I am sure he would not be shocked to know that our family has taken his sweet gift and shit on it. Literally.

  2. Don’t Call Me Erma

    February 19, 2014 by C.

    She also wore pearls...I don't wear pearls.

    She also wore pearls…I don’t wear pearls.




    My mom had been bugging me for over a week to come over and watch a show she taped about Erma Bombeck.

    My responses indicated just how excited I was about watching the show.

    “Um, I am really busy tonight.”

    “Boy, I am so tired…I think I need to go to bed.”

    “It’s not even seven o’clock,” she replied.

    “I have so much homework to do tonight.”

    “Chanin, you haven’t been in school since 1995,” she replied.

    I thought she was getting senile and would forget these details.

    Then one night she invited me over for dinner. Here is what you need to know about me…if you feed me, I will love you forever (unless your food is shitty…you will know it is shitty if you try to invite me for dinner after the first time and I turn you down…I don’t turn down good home-cooked meals EVER). She was cooking beans and cornbread…oh hell yea, I am there.

    I walked in her house and she had a TV tray set up in front of the TV. She had me fix my plate and the minute I sat down, she pushed play on the Erma Bombeck special.

    My mom has been after me for quite some time to become more like Erma Bombeck with my writing. I have never read much of anything Erma wrote, but I have heard of her and know that she was considered pretty awesome back in the day (the TV special confirmed this). But Erma and I are so different. She was a married housewife and I am not. She had three kids and I have none (please don’t feel the need to donate one of your children to me…I’m not interested). She wrote in an era when divorce, cursing and women working were looked down upon…big time. The fact that in some of the sentences I speak I leave out the f-word makes me pretty tame in today’s society.

    It seems it breaks my mom’s heart that I curse so much in my writing. My Inappropriate Elf photos bother her because they can sometimes be, well, inappropriate.

    So I want to take a moment and address this…I was not raised this way. I came from two great parents that taught me right from wrong and gave me everything I needed to become the awesome adult I am today. My cursing and inappropriateness has absolutely nothing to do with my upbringing. I feel bad that this disappoints my mom, but I also feel like I need to be me…not Erma.

    When you visit my blog or Facebook fan page and think to yourself, “who raised this lunatic?” It was Charlie and Clarissa. They did everything right…I just somehow got warped along the way.

    The important thing to know is I am really happy with my warps and I hope you can accept me as I am.

  3. Olympic Dreams Dashed

    February 10, 2014 by C.

    Kid, you are going to break your neck!!!

    Kid, you are going to break your neck!!!




    As a child, I feared doing somersaults. It looked simple, sure. I tried it a few times and didn’t find it all that much fun and felt a little loopy afterwards; though my biggest fear was breaking my neck.

    My worst nightmare materialized in 7th grade gym class. One would think that my days of somersaults were long over, but no. It was announced one day in class that the very next week we would do tumbling for two weeks. What????????????????

    My brain raced…I could not do this. How in the world can I get out of this?

    After class was over, I quietly approached Coach Shelley and asked if I could speak to her for a moment.

    “What’s up?” she asked.

    “Um, I won’t be able to participate in tumbling. Can I shoot baskets or something while everyone else tumbles?”

    “Why can’t you participate? I can’t have you shooting baskets…the mats are spread out all over the gym floor.”

    I couldn’t tell this poor woman that I was afraid I might break my neck, I’m pretty sure she already thought I was a fruitcake (it involves a shot put and my middle finger…a story for another day) and that wouldn’t help my case at all.

    “Coach Shelley, let me be honest and up front with you. I really don’t have a good reason to get out of tumbling, but please know, that with every ounce of my being, I do not wish to participate and I am willing to do anything to get out of it.”

    She studied my face for a moment. I think she could tell I meant what I was saying with all my heart.

    “Have your mom write me a note excusing you from tumbling. You will spend gym class in the library doing reports on topics I give you. Ok?”

    Are you kidding???? That was more than ok. Now, I just had to get my mom to write me the note…piece of cake.

    “Why don’t you want to tumble, Chanin?’

    “I just don’t, ok? Please just write the note,” I whined.

    Here is the note my mom wrote:

    Coach Shelley,

    Please excuse Chanin from PE while you are doing tumbling. She refuses to try tumbling and would prefer to spend her time in the library.

    While I do not agree with her choice, I will respect her decision.

    Please note the dreams of raising my daughter to be an Olympic gold medalist like the great Mary Lou Retton, have now been forever dashed, leaving me greatly disappointed and sad. I will now turn my Olympic hopes to her younger sister and pray she too doesn’t disappoint me.


    Clarissa (Chanin’s Mom)

    “Mom, I am not giving this to Coach Shelley, this is embarrassing!”

    “Then I guess you will be doing flips all over the gym.”

    With my head hung low, I approached Coach Shelley with my note. She took it into her office while I waited outside. I heard her laughing and laughing. She came out and headed across the hall to the boy’s PE coach and let him read it. They were both cracking up.

    She came over to me and said, “Ok, you will spend the hour in the library doing reports. The reports will be two pages long and your first subject is Mary Lou Retton.”

    Of course!


  4. My Crappy Night

    February 3, 2014 by C.

    That someone was almost me!

    That someone was almost me!



    I am a woman very set in my ways. Typically, I grocery shop every Saturday morning at Wal-mart. This past Thursday the weatherman was forecasting ice and snow for Saturday morning, so I decided to go to a nicer, more expensive store after work Thursday (because I won’t even attempt to go to Wal-Mart after 9 am) so I could get my shopping for the week over with.

    I had exactly three items in my cart when a sharp pain in my stomach halted me.

    Noooooo, surely I don’t need to shit. 

    I took two more steps and was in the middle of trying to make a decision about which brand of chocolate chips to buy when it hit again.

    Idiot…MOVE. You are going to shit your pants in this nice grocery store if you don’t. 

    I white-knuckled the cart and slowly made the attempt to cross the entire store to get to the restrooms, clamping down on those butt cheeks to hold it in.


    I am in a full on jog at this point and sweating.  I made the turn for the long stretch home and who do I see??? Two cheerleader bitches I went to high school with and their handsome husbands. I put on the brakes and tried to look casual. I am pretty sure I have shit creeping out of my ass.

    It occurred to me what I was wearing, my old man cardigan with a crappy t-shirt underneath, blue jeans and my old lady tennis shoes. Lovely. Of course the cheerleader bitches look like they had just come from the salon.

    OMG that reminds me. My hair was in a faux hawk because the ladies at work told me my hair looks best like that. I will never listen to them again! Have you put this picture together yet???? Grandpa cardigan, mom jeans, old lady tennis shoes and the haircut of a twenty-year-old punk rocker. Of course no handsome hubby by my side to distract the attention away from me.

    Oh, no…a fart just slipped out!  Awesome. That’ll teach them for standing out in the middle of the aisle chatting. 

    I abandoned my cart down an aisle and ran my ass into the bathroom praying I would be all alone. Thank God for small miracles.

    Maybe I can just sit in here until they leave. I can’t be in the same checkout lane with them after unleashing the fart bomb in their faces. 

    So I sat and played on my phone. Sent several text messages to friends and family.

    “Hey…almost shit my pants at Harps!”

    I sat for a very long time waiting for a response. Finally got one back…

    “Why would you text me about this???”

    My big fat fingers accidentally clicked the number of one of my friend’s mom.

    I am guessing I won’t get anymore invites to have dinner with that family.