In case you haven’t noticed, I’ve been doing a lot of traveling lately….and if there’s one thing I’ve gleaned, it’s that the airlines operate on a total caste system.  All of the airlines are doing this, but Frontier Airlines is the absolute worst. We’re all familiar with the first class vs. coach discriminatory separation that has existed for years.  We’ve become accustomed to that injustice. Those of us in the economy/coach class could always take solace in the fact that all of us subordinates were in the same boat (or  plane, in this case). Just a bunch of working stiffs relegated to the same kind of seats, the same amount of leg room, and the same shot at overhead bin space. But Frontier has caused further divisions and has turned us working class peons against one another!  This is how:

If you’re one of the wealthier serfs, you can opt to purchase a seat having more leg room.  Those seats claim to have something like 8 inches more leg room and are located at the front of coach thus providing that passenger with an early escape from the aircraft upon arrival.  Prices vary depending on the flight.

Seats that are closer together and located in the middle of the plane are the cheapest seats and most of those are center seats.  Looking for a cheap aisle or window seat?  Good luck!  These middle seats that are smack dab in the middle of the plane are designated for the lowest of peasants (me).

people in a tin can….yep….smelly and sardine-like

No leg room in this section!

The serfs sitting up ahead in the extra leg room section won’t even nod as you walk past them to your crummy seat.  It doesn’t matter that you might be their boss in the working world…….they are above you now AND have extra leg room…..HA!

And if you have a roller carry-on bag, you are not permitted to get on the Frontier airbus (sporting Foxy the Fox on its tail) until everyone else has boarded.  You are the bottom of the Frontier barrel if you have a roller bag.  And actually – you’ll probably have to check that bag, so…..next time, leave your roller bag at home and just bring all of your “stuff” in a grocery bag that you can shove under your seat.  If, by some miracle, there is enough room for your roller bag, you will get the stink eye from everyone on the plane as you turn your bag on edge to squeeze down the aisle to your cramped location.

Ready to go on my pre-Christmas flight!

Ready to go on my pre-Christmas flight with my dreaded roller bag! I am a total minion by airline industry standards

After all of this discrimination and judgment by your fellow passengers, you’ve worked up a hunger and thirst.  Hope you brought some food and drink with you, cuz on this airline, you’re not getting anything for free.  The wealthier of the minions will gloat when ordering the $1.99 water and $3.00 bag of chips.  You might here them exclaim…….”Oh by the way……make that 2!”  And the flight attendants don’t take cash so you better have a credit card to pay for a purchase which is totally against what Dave Ramsey (financial guru) preaches.

I don’t mean to sound so disgruntled especially during this time of year.  On my last trip, though, I had a particularly bad experience. In the spirit of Christmas, I’ve written a little ode about the airlines and what happened.

                          T’WAS THE FLIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS

T’was the  flight before Christmas….actually that is a lie.

The airlines are scrooges, despite when you fly….

There’s no overhead bin space,

your bag needs to be measured.

The hell with those roll-bags

stashed with your treasures.

“Now would be a good time

to place your tote in the template,

we’ll check  your bag if it’s too big

says the sugary-voiced attendant.”

Well…..at least we know Hazel can be stowed in the overhead bins

Well…..at least we know Hazel can be stowed in the overhead bins

“But – I brought a carry on for a purpose”,

I emphatically say…….

I don’t want to check baggage – it

creates a delay.”

This is why I use carry-on luggage

This is why I don’t check bags!

“Well, you’ve purchased a ticket

in the cheapest of seats,

you’re last on the aircraft,

good luck with your feat

of finding some space in the overhead bins,

You’re the lowest of low,”

smirks the suit wearing wings.

snarky flight attendant

snarky flight attendant

As I proceed down the aisle

looking  here, looking there,

I spy a great spot!

But a backpack, I fear

is taking much space…… and needlessly so.

I ask the owner….can this backpack  just go

underneath of your seat in front of your toes?

“No”, says the idiot, (he is a big schmoe).

Rolling my eyes, and before coming to blows,

Inconsiderate jerk……you can't put your book bag under the seat in front of you?

Inconsiderate jerk……you can’t put your backpack under the seat in front of you?

the attendant steps in and proceeds down the row.

He finds me a spot and I stash my small kit,

I can finally relax despite that dimwit.

So, between the cramped  quarters

and bin slots people hoard,

I’m beginning to “get” that……

cheap tix  don’t afford

what others receive

when allowed “early board.”

When I exit the plane

and I gather my things,

it’s a sad realization

that this particular trip brings…..

travelers are selfish,

and the airlines are prickish

If you don’t spend a fortune

on expensive seat tickets.

Let this be a lesson

to all  who are travelers……

the airlines will screw you;

so might the passengers.

                            MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL AND TO ALL A GOODNIGHT!



My Husband Vacuums his Head

I am Kevin’s hairdresser (or more like…..”lack-of-hair”-dresser).  Cutting Kevin’s hair was not part of my marriage vows, but I have come about this job by default.  I guess this is part of the “worse” aspect of “for better or for worse.”

I don’t have a fancy chair with a foot pump, a soft feather brush for gently sweeping away cut hair from the neck, or even a decent pair of scissors, but Kev keeps coming back to my “salon.”  The convenience and cheap service is obviously the big draw (cuz it sure as hell isn’t for my spiffy styling techniques).

As I mentioned, I don’t have many barbering tools, but I do have a vacuum cleaner. The vacuum cleaner has become an essential barbering device in my parlor.  This is a frequent scene in our house, and I swear…….this was never MY idea.  I’m totally fine with ridding the floor and surrounding areas of excess hair, but vacuuming the head???  This is where I put my foot down to the “worse” part of the vows.

Vacuuming a somehwat bald head

Vacuuming all of those trimmings and perhaps contributing to early baldness??  Is there some research on this??  And for God’s sake…..put a shirt on, man!

I’m glad that Kevin has faith in me to cut his cut when he knows that I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing.  Fortunately, he is pretty laid back about what his hair looks like.  He’s had a history of  bad hair cuts and salon visits.  When we lived in Mt Lebanon (1980-1997), Kevin always went to the Family Hair Center owned by the wonderful Frank Paonessa who was the main barber. Even before that, Kevin went to Frank starting when Kevin was 12 years old and Frank was cutting hair near where Kevin grew up in Pittsburgh.  They  have history!

Frank had a brother, Jimmy who also worked at the Family Hair Center. Frank and Jimmy were the typical Italian barbers that would’ve been stars of a reality TV show if that was in existence in the 1980’s…….”The Barbers of Pittsburgh”…..kinda a spinoff of the Barber of Seville which as it turns out has nothing to do with barbers, as far as I can tell.  Maybe more like the Housewives of Jersey spinoff………Anyway – it was always fun to hear Frank and Kevin conversing about arrests, bad guys, good guys, etc. while Frank shaved Kevin’s head way too short.  The lively conversation was wonderful …….the haircut……not so much.

After every haircut from Frank, I would  strongly encourage Kevin to go elsewhere.  But – the fact of the matter was …………Kevin and I both really liked Frank.  Frank came to our wedding! Even though I didn’t like how Frank cut Kevin’s hair, Frank was a really cool guy .  Both Frank and Jimmy became friends of ours (they were the closest we ever came to being “made” without killing someone!) .

Damn…..I wish I knew how to photoshop Kevin's and my pics in here

Damn…..I wish I knew how to photoshop Kevin’s and my pics in here.


Neither of us really wanted to sever the ties with Barber Frank despite the horrendous coif that Kevin ended up with every month.  Relocation forced the issue of saying goodbye to Frank and the awful haircuts when we moved from Mt. Lebanon in 1997.

With our move, Kevin was forced to embark on the quest to replace Frank.  After perusing a number of places, Kevin ended up at Scissorhand Station (we had a coupon for there from our “Welcome to Hummelstown” basket).  Scissorhand Station……..cute name, huh?  The business sat right next to the rail lines in Hummelstown and the Edward Scissorhands movie had just been released.  It didn’t have the gangsta flair of the Paonessa brothers Family Hair Center, but it will go down in Stoehr family lore.

This is what happened – Kevin, sporting his FBI Academy shirt walked in to Scissorhand Station and asked if they took walk-ins (little did the stylist know Kev had a coupon burning a hole in his pocket).  The stylist motioned him to her chair and then immediately proceeded to lock the door to the business.  Seems that she might have had a law enforcement fetish. There was no one else in the salon…..just Kevin and Her……. Kevin immediately felt uncomfortable that it was just him and her very alone with the door now locked.  The hairdresser then started making some flirty chit chat.  Kevin began to stammer and sweat profusely. Was he going to be seduced or murdered?  This was Fifty Shades of Grey in reverse and 30 years earlier.  After a few more lines of suggestive questions, Kevin decided to bolt. He told the woman that he had changed his mind and didn’t want a haircut after all.  Now – some men would’ve relished that moment and would have taken advantage, but Kevin just didn’t feel that things were copacetic there at the salon.  Or maybe Kevin was just not used to the dominatrix type atmosphere.  I’m pretty gentle and congenial when I cut hair.

I'm a very gentle hair stylist…..usually I've had wine

I’m a very gentle hair stylist…..usually I’ve had wine

So -ever since then, I have been cutting Kevin’s hair.  I’m not domineering or in any way sexual in my hair cutting approach (and Kevin can vouch for that!).  I do become a little bossy and then Kevin gets defensive……like when I accidentally snipped his ear with my (very dull) scissors and drew blood, Kevin threatened never to come back to my salon.  Or – when I yelled at him to quit looking at the TV and lower his head so I could get the back of his neck, he said that I was the most overbearing stylist he had ever encountered.  Kevin portends that mine is the worst salon he has ever been to.  It’s all a bluff.  Kevin’s frugal and he will suffer a really bad haircut by me because it is FREE!  But – the haircut I give Kevin is still better than Frank’s!

The point of this post is the fact that Kevin vacuums his hair.  Who does that?  Have you ever been to a salon where the  patron holds the vacuum cleaner hose and suctions every strand as it falls?  Maybe that could be a new trend………a discounted hair cutting salon (“Suck it Up”) where the patron cleans up after himself for a reduced cost. I think I’m on to something.  Call me – I’ll cut your hair if you vacuum your own head.

NBC’s The Sound of Music – Not One of My Favorite Things

I was named after Julie Andrews.  My maiden name is Julie Ann Richards.  My mom wanted to call me Melody (gag me), but thankfully, my dad intervened and suggested Julie Ann because Julie Andrews was becoming popular in 1958 when I was born (OMG……I just revealed my age of 39….it’s the new math so just stop trying to figure it out!).  Julie Andrews had just starred in My Fair Lady in 1958 and of course went on to star in Sound of Music, Chitty-Chitty Bang Bang, Mary Poppins, and other wonderful productions.  Needless to say, Julie Andrews is near and dear to my heart.  After all……we’re pretty much related.

We are kindred spirits!

We are kindred spirits!

So – I’m really kinda pissed that NBC would go to all of that commercialism trouble to do a stage play of the Sound of Music.  First of all……a full fledged finished movie beats the hell out of a stage play.  Pardon me for insulting all of you thespians (BTW – there’s counseling available for that condition)……but I really don’t want to watch a stage play on my gigantic TV.  A stage play is meant for the stage……not a 55 inch HDTV screen!  I’m pretty sure that my HDMI cable revolted when it sensed a stage play was on TV.

This just didn't cut it

This just didn’t cut it

And, you know me – I LOVE Carrie Underwood.  After all…..I’m going to great lengths to obtain her beautiful smile.  Carrie can sing, but her acting talents are sorely lacking.  Her flat affect through much of the “play” totally distracted from the heartfelt beauty that Julie Andrews brought to that role.  I have to say, though, that Mother Superior (Audra McDonald) was pretty damn good.  She’s won a bunch of Tony’s in the past and she nailed not only the singing but the emotion and acting that was necessary for that part.

Audra McDonald……she's going to heaven!

Audra McDonald……she’s going to heaven!

But – every single one of the Von Trapp family kids were not cute or likable in any aspect.  The over (or under) acting was a real turn-off.  And what was up with Rolf?  Why wasn’t he dressed in the attire worn in the movie? Would that be so hard to do? Did he really need to be portrayed in jorts?  Did they even have jorts back then?  He is an important messenger for the German Nazi regime for God’s sake!  No dictator dresses their personnel in jorts!  However, Michael Campayno who played Rolf is from Pittsburgh, so he is OK is my book even though his attire is not!

This dress is totally disrespectful of the Nazi regime

Rolf’s naked knees are totally disrespectful of the Nazi regime

Christian Borle was awesome as Max Detweiler…….he knows how to do a musical! You might know him as Tom, Debra Messing’s writing partner in Smash.  Christian is also from Pittsburgh.  Geez……there were a lot of Pittsburghers in this Sound of Music production. My husband just said – Pittsburgh is “Hollywood East.”  He then made a punny and said that it would really be “Hilly-wood East.”  This is why I drink.

The fact of the matter is this:

1)  Anyone younger than 18 has never seen the original Sound of Music

2) Anyone younger than the age of 18 has absolutely no idea who Julie Andrews is

3) NBC thought that it could make a ton of money by “updating” this classic with a well-known artist (Carrie Underwood) cast in the lead role

4) Walmart was chomping at the bit to fund this clunker.

Which leads me to my next rant…………I hate Walmart!  I am never buying another thing there.  Everything sold at Walmart is from China.  Even if it means spending a couple of extra dollars, I am buying American and I am buying local.  And I’m gonna go out on a limb here…..but – even if I don’t have a coupon, I’m still buying American and local.  Even Kevin is supportive of this mission and he is the ultimate coupon king!

My King!  I love him and all of the coupons he brings to our marriage!

My King! I love him and all of the coupons he brings to our marriage!

Wow……..I don’t even know how to conclude this post.  It appears that I’m pretty bitter about the Sound of Music stage play on NBC and the capitalistic obsession of Walmart.   Geez…..I’m a mess!  But I don’t think I’m alone.  Who’s with me here?  Give me some feedback on your thoughts about NBC’s Sound of Music and China-loving Walmart.  But – don’t you dare say anything bad about my namesake, Julie Andrews!

This wasn’t purr-fect

OK…….I just can’t let this go.  Did anyone see the American Music Awards show last Sunday?   I still can’t get Miley Cyrus’s performance out of my head.  Who in the world ever thought of projecting a crying, fake-looking lip synching cat on a big screen behind MC while she performed?  And all in the midst of galactic-type astroids streaming by.

You have to watch this spectacle on Youtube to truly appreciate the feline lip synching.  It’s hilarious!  I’m an educator by profession, and I’m doing my best to keep you informed. Consider this my Thanksgiving gift to you.  Here is the link:

Cat from outer space giving Miley some emotional and vocal lip synching support

The whole production doesn’t make sense (but maybe that’s the point).  There’s an emotional Miley nearly crying her eyes out (and missing her cue) belting out her song and all you can focus on is this ridiculous cat hovering  and lip synching.  Leah and I watched this together and we were literally falling off the couch laughing in hysterics!  

Here’s a couple more pics that really don’t do the performance justice, but you get the gist of it

Cat-a-tonic spaced out cat lip synching

Cat-a-tonic spaced out cat lip synching


Seriously……….who thinks to put together something so ridiculous?  I imagine the discussion about how this act was gonna go down sounding something like this:

Miley:  So, guys……..I’ve been asked to sing my awesome hit Wrecking Ball at the AMA’s so that is just so cool! (sticking her tongue out and showing the V sign)

Creative Team:  Oh wow…..yeah, man….cool.  So, like, let’s like make a statement and show the world how effed up you are.

Miley:  Yeah……  I’m gonna wear stupid little high cut underpants and a sports bra in hello kitty- like print……..(sticking her tongue out), but I’m just sad cuz my cat can’t come on stage with me.

CT:  Girl……..you ain’t got no cat

Miley:  Really?  WTH? Could you pass me that joint?  So…….let’s just computer generate a tabby and it would be really sick if it could just sing along with me and cry at all of the sad parts but make sure it sticks its tongue out at the end, K?  Could you pass me that doobie again?

CT:  (snort) The on -screen cat is super dope (speaking of that…..could you pass us that joint?).  Let’s put in some astroids  cuz cats like shit like that.

Miley:  (drag on the joint)…..(sticking tongue out) Yeaaaaahhhh, what?

Typical Miley pose

Typical Miley pose with her tongue out

I will say that, in the end, Miley accomplished exactly what she wanted……everyone is talking about her performance.  Who cares that Taylor Swift and JT walked off with 3 AMAs or that Rhianna got the first Icon Award ever bestowed?  That totally random pairing of a crying lip synching cat singing along with Miley during a major music awards show is just DUMBfounding (or brilliant..depending on your view).  

My own little tribute to the Miley/cat spectacle.

My own little tribute to the Miley/cat purr-formance


Grillz are the Shiz

Well….it’s been a long half-week, folks, and quite frankly I’m still recovering from the poo-phone fiasco. I’m off to Salt Lake City tomorrow so you won’t be hearing from me for awhile.  I’ll just be too busy enjoying the Hazelnut!

She's a stinker!

She’s a stinker!

Anyway – I’ve been working long hours at work and I’m pretty sick of it.  It’s pitch black when I get out of work, so I just want to fall asleep as soon as I walk out the doors of my building.  I can hardly make it to the car without dropping over into a deep snooze.  Not to mention the fact that I’ve been awake since the butt crack of dawn which totally conflicts with my inner body clock . It gets light at, like, 6:30 AM.  Even the dogs don’t need to pee that early, but the light streaming in my bedroom window announces to my sensitive eyelids that it is time to get the hell up.  So – being awake early (for me, anyhow), working long hours, feeling like it’s bedtime before I even leave the office, PLUS being uncomfortable with my newly tightened invisalign trays just makes me feel like crap.

The other day I got what is called “attachments” or “buttons” on my teeth.  These are protrusions that are supposed to guide (through pressure) my plastic invisalign trays which will, in essence,  move my teeth to ensure a Carrie Underwood-like smile.

attachments that really irritate the inside of my lips

attachments that really irritate the inside of my lips

The attachments make the trays fit super snug and I have a near-meltdown every time I have to remove the trays because I can hardly get them off.  Getting the trays down over those protrusions is really tough and nerve wracking!  I feel like I am literally ripping my teeth out.  I’ve come to the conclusion that Invisalign is actually a weight loss program disguised as an orthodontic plan.  I am so worried about maneuvering the trays and pulling my teeth out in the process that I just go all day without breakfast and lunch and keep my trays in.  But – let me be clear here…….. I am NOT going to miss dinner and my “wine time” after an elongated day at work.  These freakin’ trays are comin’ out even if I have to yank then out with a locking wrench.  

I have to admit , though…….I’ve become pretty astute as to what foods I can eat even with my trays in.  I recently finished off an entire can of Reddi Whip……no chewing required! Applesauce (loaded with cinnamon)……merely swallow and go!  Really soggy oatmeal……..just slurp it!  Not a balanced diet by any means, but that’s the least of my worries.

I'm not proud of this but I think this might be a family trait (right, Candy?)

I’m not proud of this but I think this might be a family trait (right, Candy?)

Anyway – I’m usually starving by the time I get home.  Plus,  I really need some wine to counteract the pressure on my teeth not to mention that nasty ulcer on my inner lip from the freakin’ attachments.  God!  I’m in teenage hell!!  As soon as I wrangle those trays off my teeth, my kitchen becomes the site of a feeding frenzy!  I chow down on whatever I can find before my time allotment is up, and I have to do battle with the trays to put them back in.

The other night, I furiously made myself some Spanakopita.  OK…..I cheated and used the frozen kind, but that’s as close to cooking as I get.

Delicious spanakopita with extra feta

Delicious spanakopita with extra feta

Yep……it was mighty tasty with some extra herbed feta cheese on top. Add a half bottle of wine and my dinner was nothing short of succulent! I actually got a double dinner by the time I flossed and picked the food out of  my teeth and attachments! I got the most out of my wine, too. The wine’s purpose was two-fold……..beverage  and mouthwash!  You see – with all of these attachments in my mouth, food gets caught everywhere.  So – I just swished wine around in my mouth after every bite in order to dislodge any stray strands of spinach, phyllo, and cheese from the attachments and gaps in my teeth.  It’s just a different take on using mouthwash only with wine…….works like a charm and the wine serves as a disinfectant as well, so I’m good with that (but my dentist isn’t).

For my after dinner activity , I decided to sip more wine (I had 15 “tray -less” minutes left).  I also fired up my computer and surfed the net.  I’ve come across this phenomenon before while net surfing, but I still cannot grasp the whole concept mentioned below…..especially given my torture with invisalign.

This is how it started…..I wanted to see the video of Miley Cyrus’s Wrecking Ball (which as it turns out is pretty suggestive, but I like the song so I downloaded it).  One click led to another and before I knew it, I saw a pic of Miley decked out with grillz on her teeth.  Grillz appear to be the new fad and actually, I’m surprised that the word “grillz” wasn’t in the running for being added to the American Heritage Dictionary (the word “selfies” garnered the most votes)  But – really……..what is the attraction of putting grillz on your teeth?

Is this attractive?  And she has such beautiful white teeth

Is this look really attractive? And she has such beautiful white teeth!

I mean…..I’ve gone to great lengths to camoflauge the fact that I have stuff on my teeth.  Why in the world would celebrities want to flaunt metal contraptions on their choppers??  Would you?

Grillzed out Biebs

Grillzed out Biebs

I'm a Katy Perry fan…but, really??

I’m a Katy Perry fan…but, really??

I don’t get it.  But I’m old.  Wait……is that spanakopita in between Katy’s bicuspid and molar?? Does Katy also need a locking wrench to get those grillz off her teeth?   Does she drink a lot?  OMG……Katy Perry and I really ARE alike!  ROAR!!!!

I now have a new appreciation for my invisalign.  It appears that I am quite in style and celeb-like with my pretend grillz. Maybe I need to paint my trays a glitter gold, wear leopard print (or just prance around in my undies like Miley), and flaunt my grillz smile.  Yep……I’m down wit’ it.  Grillz are the shiz! The pain and pressure of the invisalign attachments and trays are so worth it. I am heading to bed with a new outlook on my situation!  Bring on the early sunrise…….I’m gonna get up tomorrow morning, wipe the slobber off my face, dress in a crazy outfit and face a new day with my subdued grillz!  I’m a star!

(hope I don’t scare Hazel….)

A Turd Saved My iPhone

I’m not kidding……a turd saved my cell phone.  What you are about to read is graphic.  Quit reading now if you don’t posses potty humor.

This is what happened – my colon did it’s “doo-dee” last night.  I had just been to a meet and greet with Rainn Wilson (aka Dwight Schrute on The Office) at Penn State Harrisburg.  Before heading to the other venue for his speech, I relieved myself in the nearest bathroom……my iPhone 5 in my back pocket of my cool jeans.  I had just taken numerous pics of Rainn on my phone.

Me, Rainn, and Kevin…..pre-toilet plunge. Rainn is wearing a PSH Police hat Kevin gave him.

Me, Rainn, and Kevin…..pre-toilet plunge. Rainn is wearing a PSH Police hat Kevin gave him.

As I pulled up my pants after doing my business  (please try  NOT to visualize this), I heard an unmistakable “thunk.”  I knew immediately what had happened.  My cell phone had taken a disastrous dive.

Without hesitation, I stuck my newly manicured hand in that feculent waste water and pulled out my iPhone.

I don't really like this nail color, but it's OK for putting my hand in toilet water

I don’t really like this nail color, but it’s OK for putting my hand in toilet water

Seriously – my phone ended up face down (face-up would’ve been better) on toilet-papered excrement.  If I could’ve taken a picture, I would  have because it truly was a miracle!  But how does one take a picture of one’s cell phone floating protectedly on a turd?

After disgustingly retrieving my contaminated cell phone out of the commode, I quickly dried it off with a ton of paper towels and also stuck it in the hand air blow dryer numerous times.  Then I Purelled the hell out of it.  When I got home, I soaked my iPhone case in a bleach/soap combination for 2 hours. I’m still scrubbing my hands.  I cleaned the floors today and let my hands soak a couple extra minutes in Mr. Clean.  I know it’s gross, but……thank God my phone landed on that solid mass.  

Anyway – back to last night – I was really worried about my phone because the battery was almost dead when it took the dramatic plunge into the toilet.  So – I couldn’t tell if my battery was just dead or if the whole phone died a toxic fecal death.  As I listened to Rainn’s interesting speech, I lodged my befouled phone between my legs (again – please try not to visualize this) to warm up the phone and dry out whatever latrine water still remained in there.  It really put a damper on the whole Rainn Wilson experience.

As soon as I got home, I plugged in my heavily disinfected turd phone into an outlet and prayed that it would revive itself.  Lo and behold, it immediately showed signs of life!  My poo-phone had survived!

I am just so relieved that my expensive phone is OK.  I have used it numerous times today and it is functioning perfectly!  It’s a bit stinky, but that’s alright…………just kidding…..it’s not stinky but every time I dial a phone number, bubbles escape from the bottom…….haha.

So……I have a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgiving with my iPhone rescue topping the list.  Happy Turd-giving to all of you!

I’m Disturbed

OK……so maybe  my title isn’t quite grammatically correct.  Let me clarify…..I am feeling disturbed.  Kevin and I watched a documentary on TV the other night and the contents of that movie are still really bothering me.  The movie is old – like from 2009.  The name of it is The Wild and Wonderful White Family of West Virginia and is a follow up to another documentary that followed cult outlaw, Jesco White and his mountain dancing.  The title of the documentary is very misleading.  They got the “wild” part right, but the White family is far from “wonderful.”  The Wild and Wonderful of the title actually come from West Virginia’s state slogan “Wild and Wonderful West Virginia.”

So – this documentary was filmed over the course of a year and follows the White family who are basically the lowest common denominator of human life.  Granted these people are born into the coal mines of West Virginia which results in a hard life coupled with poverty.  The documentary follows the Whites (mother, sisters, brothers, cousins) through their criminal activity, hard core drug use, even harder core drinking, degrading language/cussing, sexual exploits and other horrendous behavior all exhibited in front of their young children who also follow suit.   Here is a video from the producers who explain the documentary about this poverty stricken, drug toting, pill taking family. 

In the above video, you see a baby being laid in her incubator.  In the movie, right after the baby is laid  in the incubator, the mother, Kirk White, goes over to the side table in the hospital room where her friend has cut a couple lines of either cocaine or crushed up Xanax…….not sure which, and snorts a thick line of the stuff.  She then staggers to the bathroom and says something unintelligible.   Kirk has recently been released from jail for prescription fraud (go figure).  Fortunately, her newborn was taken away from her and turned over to social services.   

The above video clip gives you a glimpse into the movie.  After watching 90 minutes of such extreme callousness, partying, lewd and crude behavior, I just find it hard to be sympathetic to the White family.  I understand that the cycle is difficult to break.  I do not agree with the director of the video.  I do not view the Whites as a fascinating wonderful family.  Every single one of them is on social security, welfare, and any other  assistance program offered.  They are smart enough to work the government system. We taxpayers are supporting their drug use and criminal activity (jail).  Am I wrong for greatly disliking this family?  Or should I feel sorry for their plight? I mean…..judging from the short clip you saw, how do you feel?

Do I recommend that you watch this documentary?  I don’t know.  As much as I despise the family, the movie has stuck with me and haunted me.  I literally couldn’t sleep after watching it.  Just be prepared that it is raw footage and your heart will break for those little children who have already showed signs of following in their elders’ footsteps.

Hank Williams III hangs with the White family and provides much of the music (it is crass, too) that Jesco mountain dances to.  Jesco’s got talent despite the tremendous loss of brain cells.  See the clip below:

See what I mean?  The guy’s got great foot work!

At the end of the documentary, the Whites are at a local park boozing and drugging it up.  Their language is  foul and involves talking about each other’s body parts and every other word is a cuss word.  Mamie is stoned out of her mind.  Everyone is doing drugs or drinking. The camera then follows an innocent looking blonde haired 4 year old daughter of one of the adults.  She goes up to the jungle gym on the playground where there is a horn like tube resembling a megaphone.  She puts her mouth up to the tube and shouts, ‘Fuck You.”  The camera then pans to a girl around 10 years of age spinning on the merry-go-round.  She is smoking  a joint.

I don’t know………..this documentary just really bothered me.  To see this horrendous behavior in action and watch it perpetuate with the next generation is upsetting.  If you end up watching this documentary (it is probably online……….we watched it on The Movie Channel Extra on TV), reply to this post and let us all know your take on it.

I’m just thankful I wasn’t born a coal miners daughter. But if I was, my name would be Jule Bob and I sure as hell wouldn’t be worried about my teeth!