The Marriage Advice You Never Asked For

It was six years ago that a counseling website named Loripalooza as one of their Top 50 Blogs for Marriage Advice. I’m still astonished considering I had never given a single piece of sincere marriage advice. And why would I? I’m not a marriage counselor and I certainly don’t believe in the idea of the perfect marriage. In fact, I think anyone who claims to is either lying, or setting themselves up for a huge disappointment.

So on this day, as Brantley and I celebrate THIRTEEN years of marriage I am going to do something I’ve never done before. I’m going to give you the sincere-ish marriage advice that you never asked for.

Let’s start with the misconception of the perfect marriage. No one single person is perfect. Period. So why would anyone think that putting two people together under one roof and labeling them as married would create an environment that was anything close to perfect? It’s absurd. Each person goes into a marriage with certain expectations based on our families of origin whether they be good, or bad. Try not to get too hung up on the idea that My family is normal and my spouse’s family is weird. We are ALL weird.

Now, try and think of the most difficult thing you’ve ever had to do. Was it passing a field sobriety test, doing calculus, or training a litter of kittens to walk a tightrope? Forget about it. Communicating effectively with your spouse is the hardest thing you will ever have to do. Why?  Because our brains don’t work the same. They just don’t.

Women tend to correlate our partner’s words and behaviors with EVERYTHING they’ve ever said, or done since the beginning of time. Men, however, are more singular in their thinking. Before you start sending me hate mail, I’m NOT saying that men are simple. I’m saying if a woman ever finds herself thinking, “What did he mean by that?” The answer is generally EXACTLY what he said. Unlike with women, there’s very little chance he’s making a snide reference to the fight you had with his sister three Christmases ago when he asks, “Did you empty the dishwasher?” Ninety-nine times out of one hundred the man is just looking for a clean spoon with which to eat ice cream out of the carton.

This brings me to another important subject- arguments. Arguments are inevitable. Things are often said in the heat of the moment that you wish you could take back. However, it doesn’t work like that. Hurtful words cannot be unheard, but if you keep your angry name calling on a middle-school level it can really facilitate a smoother make-up transition.

For example, if you’re arguing about housework and who does the brunt of it, instead of shouting obscenities at one another, take a page out of my playbook and try something like, “Hey, dingle-berry brains! Do you think your dirty socks and underwear just magically make their way to the laundry room?” or “Hey, you big horse’s ass! Stop leaving popsicle wrappers all over the damn house!”

See. There’s nothing above that Brantley would have a hard time forgiving me for. (I know this for a fact because I say both of those things quite often.)

In the event that you do encounter a problem in your relationship that you can’t get past, then by all means seek the advice of a counselor. I’m not talking about someone at your church reminding you that a wife should always submit to her husband. That’s not only unhelpful bullshit, but also a waste of your valuable time. I’m referring to a licensed professional who specializes in counseling struggling couples.

A few years back, Brantley and I hit a rough patch of marital road. We weren’t thriving and we weren’t communicating well. As awkward as it was, we took to couple’s counseling and within a few months we were stronger than ever. There’s a big misconception about marriage counseling. People often think of it as the last stop on your road to divorce and it’s only talked about in a whisper. This is far from the truth and there’s no shame in seeking help. A good marriage counselor can be a great tool in getting you and your spouse back in sync.

Lastly, don’t take yourselves too seriously, don’t set unrealistic expectations, and FOR THE LOVE OF GOD don’t feel like your marriage is less than that of a friend who boasts constantly about his/her perfect union. It’s these people who generally have the biggest problems behind closed doors.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this less than earth shattering marriage advice. However, if you think it’s complete nonsense and your way is better, then by all means keep doing you. There’s no one correct way of doing marriage, but being able to admit that we are all assholes is a great first step.

Marriage Advice

Luke-isms: Twerking

After a few hours of fishing yesterday Brantley, Lucas and I headed home tired and dirty. Our first order of business was, as always- a tick check. Lucas was used to the drill and readied himself by starting the process without even having to be told.

Strip down. Arms up. Turn around. Spread your cheeks.

However, when we got to the last part Lucas turned back and said with hesitation, “Mom, you said twerking was against the law. I don’t want to go to jail.”

I know what you’re thinking. Hang on. I can explain.

Flashback to three days earlier when Lucas walked into the kitchen and announced, “Dad just showed me how to twerk.”

“Excuse me?”

Brantley spoke up, “No. No. See. No. That’s not how it happened. He thought he knew what twerking was and in an effort to educate him, I showed him a video on YouTube of someone properly twerking.”

“Properly? That’s not ok,” I said. “What on earth? What kind of video did you let him watch?”

“It was just an instructional video. They were wearing pants. I swear. It was totally wholesome and I guarantee it was more benign than what he thought twerking really was.”

I was intrigued. “What did he think it was?”

Brantley rubbed his face. “It’s hard to describe. Lucas, show your Mom what you thought twerking was.”

I immediately regretted my question.

“Ok. Stop! That’s worse! That’s WAY worse! Lucas, where on earth? Never mind. Listen, don’t ever do that again, ok?.”

I could tell the wheels were turning in his seven-year-old brain. “Don’t do which one? The one in the video, or the other one?”

“Don’t do either. Ok. Got it?”

“Why, Mom?”

“Becaaaaause it is against the law.”

“What about if I do it in private?” he asked.

“Still illegal in most states.”

Luke-isms Twerking

Lawd, help me.

Five Ways To Amuse Yourself On Facebook

Five Ways To Amuse Yourself On Facebook

Over the recent years, Facebook has given us a multitude of ways to entertain ourselves. With the touch of a button we can keep in touch with loved ones, stalk our exes, and find the answer to burning questions like, “What might my friends be cooking for dinner tonight?” Facebook isn’t without its drawbacks, however. It’s also the place people turn to when they need to air misplaced grievances about well, anything. Politics, religion, personal family matters, requests to diagnose my rash- it’s all on the table. I hear more people every day complaining about the social media site and making thinly veiled threats of shutting down their accounts for good. These are generally the same people who will post a photo of their ingrown toenail accompanied by a prayer request the following day.

So what keeps me coming back to Facebook time and time again? I’m glad you asked. Here are five ways I utilize Facebook for endless entertainment.

#1- Answer people’s questions.

Root Canal

#2- Tag your friends (without their permission) in discussions that have nothing to do with them in an effort to make them appear sketchy.

Prenatal Massage

 

And…

Liver Parfait

And…

ForSale

ForSale3 ForSale2

#3- Jump into a discussion that has nothing to do with you by making a completely unrelated AND polarizing comment. If you’re lucky someone will “like” your comment and agree with you (which is completely stupid). Stumped for ideas? You can always go with Obamacare, global warming, or anything Jesus-related.

Common Core

Did I hear you say that you sailed through numbers one through three and that you’re ready to raise the stakes a little? I’ll take that as a silent yes.

#4- Search your local community page for a heated debate filled with self-righteous comments. (Tip: These are easy to spot because they have the most comments.) After reading through the original post and some, not all (We have other things to do. Am I right?) of the comments pick a side. It doesn’t matter which one. Once you’ve chosen a side, post a comment that vehemently expresses your agreement with some of the people, while at the same time makes you look like an unscrupulous asshole.

(Not recommended for anyone seeking employment in the near future.)

Facebook Drama

 

Toddler2

Double-whammy!! As you can see, I completed number four while also incorporating number two- tagging a friend. (Haha! Number two…)

#5- Post a vague ad on your community’s page attempting to sell items that were recently stolen from your neighborhood. This one is a real crowd pleaser!

Baby Jesus

BabyJesus2

And the fun just never stops!

I hope you’ve enjoyed this Loripalooza tutorial on Five Ways To Amuse Yourself On Facebook. I know I have! Now, get out there (while you stay on the couch) and have some fun.

For more DIY entertainment: How To Beat the Winter Weather Blues 

You Have No Kittens (Album Drop)

Ladies and gentlemen, it’s an honor and a privilege to sit down with hip-hop artist, Lucas Wescott on this momentous occasion. Today, he is unveiling his new single You Have No Kittens exclusively on Loripalooza.

Not only that, but he was even kind enough to carve some time out of his busy schedule to answer some questions for his fans.

Lori: How long have you been interested in rap and hip-hop music?

Lucas: Well, I’m a cool kind of guy so for a pretty long time.

Lori: Some rappers have a tendency to misbehave. Have you ever gotten in trouble?

Lucas: Well, I’ve never been to jail, but if I did then I would make sure my trial was on the news.

Lori: I understand that you like to dance. What is your favorite style of dancing?

Lucas: Tap dancing.

Lori: Tap dancing?

Lucas: Yes. I do it all the time in my hip-hop dance class.

Lori: Well, that’s wonderful.

Lucas: What inspired you to write this song?

Lucas: Because I would like to be a famous singer like, you know, Taylor Swift, or Bruno Mars.

Lori: Toward the end of the song it sounds as if someone in the audience is bothering you and you call them out by shouting, “Hey!”

Lucas: Yeah. I don’t allow that at my shows.

Lori: The name of your song is You Have No Kittens. Do you have any kittens and how do you really feel about kittens?

Lucas: No, I don’t have any kittens. When I think about kittens I feel inspired to have a new life, or to just act like a kitten. Stuff like that.

Lori: Do you have any dogs?

Lucas: Yes.

Lori: Is there anything you’d like to say about your dogs?

Lucas: Well, I like snuggling with them and sometimes they pee inside.

Lori: Do you know what your next song will be about?

Lucas: I’m not sure. Probably video games, or cooking food. I’m a pretty good chef.

 

Well there you have it, folks. The artist and rapper in his own words. What a humble guy.

Now, I know you’re all clamouring to get your hands on his new release. So without further ado, here is You Have No Kittens by Lucas Wescott.

Thanksgiving? Thanks For Nothing!

Thanksgiving

Big news, y’all. Big!

In the recent weeks I was informed that I am 1/16th Cherokee indian.

I’ll let that soak in for a minute.

You’re probably thinking the same thing I did initially. Duh! Look at you! Blonde hair. Fair skin. Ginger son. It all makes perfect sense. 

I have a lot of questions and a lot of lost time to make up for. For starters, where’s my land? Do I own a casino? Can I legally smoke peyote? And lastly, why am I just now finding out about this?

The answer to the last question falls squarely at the feet of my sweet mother. She apparently just never thought to mention it. I will refrain from pressing this any further considering I am still waiting on her to tell me how babies are made.

That issue pales in comparison (pun intended) to the Native American struggle that has been heaved upon my shoulders at the worst possible time of the year. I’m not going to lie. Columbus Day was hard for me this year. Why in the Hezekial do we dedicate the same number of days (okay, day) to Christopher Columbus that we also dedicate to real heroes like United States Veterans and Martin Luther King, Jr?

Seriously.

If anything, Christopher Columbus should be known for being the first man to get lost and refuse to ask for directions only to land in the wrong place and be like, “Nailed it! I made it here in record time, too because I wouldn’t stop and let anyone go to the bathroom. Now, stop staring at my panty hose and give me all your gold and spices.”

What a douche.

So keep me in your thoughts and prayers as I host Thanksgiving dinner this year because I’ll be wearing the Native American struggle. I’ll be wearing it hard.

Stiyu. (translation: Until we meet again)

Sincerely,

Ayita Doya (translation: First Beaver to Dance)

**Please bear with me as I learn my native language, adjust to my new Cherokee Indian name and stay tuned for my first experience being racially profiled.

Sponsor A Suburban White-Boy

With the holidays approaching, many people will be asking themselves, “What can I do to help others who are suffering?” Well, ask no more. The struggle of the suburban white-boy is all too often overlooked. I made the following video in an effort to change that and raise awareness.

**Contains adult language

Please don’t let their suffering continue. This video highlighted the struggle of just one white boy, but there are millions more out there facing daily dilemmas like, “Should I play with my Xbox 360, or my Nintendo Wii U?” No child should ever have to make that decision. Not in America, dammit.

I heard recently that the same white boy in this video had to share a snack with another child because their mother forgot to send a snack to school that day. Yes, you read that right. Two children sharing one box of Goldfish crackers. Friends, it doesn’t have to be this way.

What can you do to help? I’m challenging everyone who reads this to share it with at least one person and show you support suburban white-boys everywhere by wearing their signature gray ribbon. Together we can make a difference.

#sponsorasuburbanwhiteboy

You don’t have to do big things to change the world. Small things are cool, too and take up way less of your time. -Mother Theresa

 

Sponsor A Suburban White-Boy

Alternate Route: My Long Journey Home

AlternateRoute

I share the following story not in the hopes that you will learn from my mistakes, but that you will read these words and realize what a true badass I am (in case you didn’t already know).

I ventured home from work around ten o’clock one dark night in September. Before getting on the interstate, I thought it would be wise to stop and grab something to eat. I felt a nervousness in the pit of my stomach as I pulled into the McDonald’s drive-through. I should’ve recognized this foreboding moment as more than a prequel to a bout of IBS, but I didn’t. I was starving and tired.

The gentleman at the loud speaker read my order back to me incorrectly. After correcting it, he asked if I would like tomato on my chicken sandwich. I told him I didn’t care.

“Ma’am, I can’t decide for you.”

“I probably shouldn’t say this, but I really don’t care what you put in that bag. I’m going to eat it regardless.”

“Please pull around,” he said calmly.

When I arrived at the window I apologized for being so blunt. I explained that I was just really hungry and tired.

“I didn’t get it at first,” he said, “but I believe you now with that look you got on your face.”

“Well,” I stammered. “My face doesn’t… move a whole lot.”

“My Grand Mama’s face don’t move a lot either ‘cause she had a stroke. You had a stroke?”

“No,” I answered grabbing my bag of mystery food. “Sometimes, when women get older…”

He interrupted. “Well, Imma pray for you anyway that your face move again.”

“Not necessary, but thanks. I guess. Ok, have a good,” he closed the window.

Friggin’ whippersnappers.

I was headed down the interstate when I reached into my bag and found my plain chicken sandwich made just the way I had requested. Cha-ching! However, as I approached the I-40/I-65 interchange there were lights flashing. My exit was completely closed. I panicked.

I don’t know any other way to get home. Should I call 9-1-1, or find a hotel? Maybe I can find a quiet place to bed down at an underpass until tomorrow. Wait a minute! I think I remember signs warning me about this last week, but I didn’t pay them any mind. I never thought that it would apply to me. I don’t use alternate routes! Alternate routes happen to other people.

Oh, Lori! Listen to yourself. This is exactly the kind of thinking that led you head-on into a Veteran’s Day parade in Fairhope, AL five years ago. Had it not been for a conveniently located alleyway and a horse that was light on his feet who knows what could have happened? Old people can be so mean when frightened.

It’s ok. I can do this! I will just use my navigation and this time I won’t argue with it.

I crammed that dry chicken sandwich into my face as Siri directed me in a forty-mile circle around Nashville only to dump me five feet past the initial roadblock. Thankfully, it was just far enough and I was able to follow my familiar route home. *

As I pulled into my garage that night I felt as triumphant as I always do after having worked a shift, but with a little extra chutzpah. Not only had I taken the path least traveled, albeit against my will, but I had also eaten fast-food for the first time in over a year and made it all the way home without crapping my pants.

*Strong work, TDOT on closing an entire section of interstate for a job that size.

Addyi or Addy-uh-uh?

Earlier this month the FDA approved the drug, Addyi (Filbanserin) making it the first ever prescription treatment for hypoactive sexual desire disorder in women. Studies showed that the (all too cliché) pink pill, manufactured by Sprout Pharmaceuticals, increased sexual desire in 37% of their test subjects. Let’s take a moment to talk a little more in depth about Addyi and hopefully separate some myth from fact.

First of all, Addyi is not female Viagra so STOP CALLING IT THAT. Viagra treats a physical problem in men who can’t get, or keep an erection. Addyi works with chemicals in your brain to treat women with horny deficiency. Just after the earth cooled, scientists discovered that the cure for horny deficiency in men was low testosterone. Perhaps the delay in treating the decreased female libido was due to the centuries of research that scientists put into searching for the G-spot.

“… After spending years toiling away in bed with countless women, Dr. Shlong was left to ponder why the G-spot was more difficult to find than an entire family of Sasquatches wearing matching T-shirts reading Vote For Pedro. However, his persistence never waned. Even on his deathbed and between shallow breaths he was said to have pleaded with his colleagues. “Seriously, guys. I was this close to finding it last time. Just send me one more focus group.”

Now, let’s talk about side effects. Sprout Pharmaceuticals indicate that women who take Addyi can expect nausea, fatigue, dry mouth, drowsiness and even loss of consciousness. No red flags there. We can only hope that Sprout’s next revolutionary medications will target the side effects of Addyi and also come in a fun color. (Please be periwinkle.)

Don’t be completely discouraged, ladies. Take solace in knowing that about a third of the test subjects studied reported an increase in sexual desire. That’s great news! Sure they were too nauseated and tired to act on said desire, but you know what they say- it’s the thought that counts thirty-seven percent of the time.

Lastly, the cause of your decrease in libido is worth looking into. We aren’t talking about a miracle drug here, but rather a prescription that was approved by the same governing agency that brought you Fen-Phen. Popping those pink pills until the cows come home is not going reignite the fire you once felt for your baby daddy when he had more hair on his head than he did growing out of his ears and on his back. To date, there isn’t a pill that can fix ugly. Until then, we will continue to rely on alcohol and plastic surgeons just like God intended.

Middle-Aged Affirmations

Self-esteem is important at any age. Everyone knows that, but did you know that a leading indicator in a person’s self-esteem is how many times per week they practice doing affirmations? It’s true. In fact, some argue that Middle-Aged Affirmations are more important than ever because they play a critical role in the health and wellbeing of entire families. In a recent scientific study, researchers were able to find a direct correlation between the number of children who point out their Mother’s varicose veins at the YMCA and the number of children who are left in hot cars while the same Mother goes into a liquor store a short time later.

So please, remember to do your Middle-Aged Affirmations because it’s good for the whole family, but take it from me and lock your bedroom door before you get started.

Take care!

Middle Aged Affirmations

Luke-isms: A Lesson On Equality

Lukeisms Equality

Me: “Hey Lucas, see that big mansion right there? Two men live there and they’re married. Cool, huh?”

Lucas: “Do YOU mean to tell ME that they drive THAT brown car?!”

Me: “Umm. I guess so.”

Lucas: “Why in the world would someone buy a BROWN car?! That doesn’t make sense! If I was married to that mansion I would drive a green car and it would be AWESOME. Maybe their parents just gave them that car because they weren’t using it.”

Me: “Okey dokey.”

Lucas: “Hey Mom, did YOU know that at two fifty-eight on June second and 1965 they invented shoes?”

Me: “I did NOT know that.”

Lucas: “Yep. I learned it off the internet. Before then everybody just walked around in their socks. There’s a lot to learn on the internet. You should try it sometime.”