NOT the Lorca Damon page for YA readers! Run away, children, run away!

Goldfish Are Assholes

See, it’s not enough that goldfish swim in circles all day in an effort to mesmerize your innocent children then inexplicably die while they watch. No, that would be bad enough. I can trump that with a goldfish who decided to live.

My autistic daughter got an aquarium for her birthday because she loves checking out all the fish whenever we go to the store. She could stand for hours and look at these things, so we thought, “Hey! I know! She’ll love an aquarium of her own!” (IMPORTANT NOTE: the fact that she’s autistic has absolutely nothing to do with goldfish being assholes, and it really has no bearing on this story…it was really just to make you feel really horrible about what our goldfish did to us. Keep reading.)

We set up the aquarium and waited the appropriate amount of time before purchasing fish, giving the water a chance to decrudify before introducing living creatures into it. Then it was time to head to the store. After steering her well away from the $30 fish (Yes, there are fish that cost $30 at the pet store. If I ever pay that much money for a fish, I’d better be eating it paired with a 100-year-old wine, and Hugh Jackman had better be feeding it to me naked.), we found the moderately priced goldfish. I didn’t want to look like a cheapskate and go for the 38-cent fish, since I could feel people staring at me. I just knew they were judging me for being really, really cheap and buying my poor kid the fish equivalent of two-buck chuck. I sprung for three of the dollar fish, and we were outta there.

One of those cheap little suckers has turned on me, though. One of our orange fish has turned mostly black, starting with its fins and tail and now creeping up its body. It’s really a cool-looking mottled color, like a calico cat, but therein lies the problem: my kids have decided I let the fish die of neglect and replaced it with a different fish. Not only that, it really looks like I didn’t even bother trying to get a similar breed of fish, let alone buy an exact replica.

I tried looking up this phenomenon on the internet just to prove my innocence, but there is surprisingly little in the way of scholarly veterinary journal articles on illnesses affecting cheap goldfish. I’m starting to wish I had actually flushed the little crap head down the toilet since I’m being accused of killing him anyway. As it stands, I’m keeping a running tab of goldfish expenditures so I can either take it off my taxes or make sure I don’t reach the threshold where icthysacide becomes a felony.

I Know What You’re Doing, China, and It’s Not Going to Work

Per my previous post about how much I really adore getting free crap in the mail (even if the sender expects me to go to the trouble of telling all of you about it), a strange phenomenon has occurred: other people have jumped on the “send Lorca free crap” bandwagon. But there’s a catch…none of it works.

Screw you, free crap sender.

I was sent a smartwatch to review, only I’m actually far smarter than this watch. My Dachshund is smarter than this watch, which is an incredible feat considering my Dachshund is actually dumber than the paperweight on my desk. Since the smartwatch doesn’t work, the paperweight is smarter than the watch, too. I swear this is what algebra looks like if you try to apply it to real-world situations.

I told the smartwatch people, “Hey, I’m all for helping out my fellow man, so before I tell the whole internet how stupid your smartwatch is (I didn’t bring up the Dachshund yet), I just want you to know that it doesn’t do anything. It doesn’t connect to my phone, it doesn’t alert me to things happening around me, and it doesn’t actually keep time because the hands aren’t really on there that tight.”

They apologized and sent me another one.

It had a human hair stuck to the watch face, underneath the glass. Yes, in one of those places that makes it irretrievable unless you void the warranty by breaking the glass. My OCD and germaphobia kicked in big time on that one.

And it still doesn’t connect to my phone.

Then another company decided they could trump the stupid smartwatch by sending me their “smartband.” Guess what a smartband is? It’s a smartwatch that is too stupid to tell time. Yes, this doohickey has to be worn alongside your watch if you want to know what time it is AND be told all kinds of important things like “your phone is ringing.” Why would I wear a band to tell me my phone is ringing? If I have the ringer turned off on the phone for some reason, then I probably won’t take any immediate action if it starts ringing. Can’t bother people in a movie theater with the ringing of a phone, but I can bother them by having a conversation on that phone?

Oh…and the smartband doesn’t connect to my phone.

But my writer brain has figured out what’s actually going on here. China (yes, the entire country) is mailing me cheap pieces of crap with a sinister plot in mind. Once all the pieces of the puzzle combine in my house, they’re going to morph into a Transformers-type robomonster and begin the first phase of US domination.

Sure…tell me you weren’t already thinking the same thing.

Luckily, all these pieces of crap are dumber than the Dachshund, so even if they do combine and turn into some giant robot, they won’t be able to work the doorknob. We’re all safe.

I Like to Think my Kid Does This When She’s Grounded

This is amazing, awe-inspiring, and fuzzy, wrapped into one enlightening tour through the history of music. All I can say is she’s a genius, and she likes to sing about her carpet. Somebody clean it, please.

All Hail the Internet of Things

The internet of things is already taking over my house, as evidenced by the fact that I just called out an apology to my Roomba when I heard it struggling over a piece of laundry I’d left in the floor. You’ll be glad to know the Roomba and my bra both survived the altercation.

But when a great little company with a crowdsourced product offered me (me, of all people!) the chance to test out one of their products and write about it, there was no way I was turning it down. First, I love free stuff, no matter how awesome or stupid. Second, from the lovely description in the email, I knew I had to have this thing because the potential for messing with my husband’s mind is endless. Third, I just like being important enough for companies to send me free shit.

This little gadget is called IvyLink, and it’s a smartoutlet, which right away is probably too smart for me and therefore out of my league. But when I learned that I could control this outlet–and therefore anything I plug into it–from my phone, there was no way I could NOT use it. Yes, you plug this adapter in your regular wall socket and you can turn it on and off from the free app you download to your phone. I’m sure the fantastic people who designed it were envisioning a better world where city apartment dwellers don’t have to leave their air conditioners or heaters on while they’re not home, but can instead get the temperature moving as they head back to the house. I’m sure there are irrigation considerations, so we don’t have to leave sprinkler systems on a timer and water the crops (or the golf course, my personal pet peeve) in the rain just because that’s how the system is set up; no, you can activate it from your app now. Went out to run some errands and took longer than you thought? No more walking into a dark house since you can activate the lamp you keep plugged into this thing before you even reach your drive way.

Or…OR…you could plug the TV into it and randomly turn the thing on and off from another room in the house, leaving your husband bewildered and misdirecting all blame away from you since you weren’t in the room. You could turn the bedside lamp on and off while seemingly texting your friend or checking Facebook. But those baby steps into keeping the man guessing are child’s play, nay, amateur hour.

I plugged the treadmill into this handy little device.

On. Off. THUD. On. Off. THUD. On. Off. THUD.

Before you leave nasty comments, remember that he totally had it coming for bodily injury grievances that I won’t go into here. But if this type of revenge is right up your alley (or if you’re a do-gooder who would use this gadget for the betterment of society), the folks who sent it to me would love you to check it out.

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I Gave My 4-Year-Old Nephew a Drum Set for Christmas

NOTE OF CAUTION: This is a tale of two nephews. The story doesn’t make sense to begin with, but it makes even less sense if you think I’m talking about the same nephew.

Now, you read that title and you’re thinking to yourself, “Wow, Lorca, you’re a bitch,” or, “What has your sister ever done to you?” and you’re actually right on both of those points, but that’s not the case here. My sister was totally on board with this plan, and I happened to have an extra drum set lying around that he would love, complete with two–count ‘em, TWO–cymbals! The best part is she now gets to foster his musical creativity (an hour away from where I happen to live) and my kid no longer owns a drum set. It’s a win in every direction.

But ah, the karma gods of Christmas got me back. My closest living nephew, a young man who is decidedly not a little boy and therefore has evolved past the loud-Christmas-gift stage, unwrapped a present last night from some other hopefully well-intentioned person in the room, and took off down the hall with delight to go put it to good use.

When he came back, I stopped dead in my tracks, certain that a gift I’d bought my husband had been broken on the trip over to my in-laws’ house. The room filled with a horrible, eye-watering scent that caused tiny flames to erupt inside my nostrils. I was certain the expensive doe urine I’d bought him for an upcoming hunting trip (that’s a story for another blog post) had leaked out of its tiny bottle and was at that very moment filling the room with noxious fumes.

No, someone had given my teenaged nephew… AXE BODY SPRAY.

My darling nephew had doused himself in this concoction under the mistaken impression that it would be a good idea, or possibly because he thought the commercials were true and half-naked women would throw themselves through the front window like a team of Black Ops, so attracted by his smell that they couldn’t keep their hands off him. That’s the only version that makes sense, since no one in the room wanted him to smell like anything other than Ivory soap and appropriate amounts of deodorant. Well, except for the yuletide jerk who was fulfilling some dish-best-served-cold against the nephew’s parents for something they’d done, something horrible on par with clubbing baby seals.

It’s possible that it was his own parents who bought it at his request, but there are times when a parent has to look around and think, “I know that’s what he really wants, but it’s not a good idea.” Trust me on this…that’s how I came to own the damn drum set in the first place.

Merry Christmas! I Have a Blog!

So I took a learn-at-home course in chainsaw juggling and cut off my own hands. It turns out I hadn’t actually bothered opening the learn-at-home yoga course and therefore wasn’t quite bendy enough to adapt to typing with my feet. That’s my very good reason for neglecting this blog since an entire season ago. Plus, it’s a way better story than “Now that I’m an author with a twelve-book deal, I’m just way too busy to give my brilliant content away for free.” Even I would want to punch me for that remark.

So I just got really super busy and couldn’t post anything, and besides, publishers hate seeing new blog posts and lots of Facebook selfies when they’re expecting a manuscript. But that smacks of that previous braggy comment, so I won’t go there either.

Lots of things have been happening since my last post, but since none of them involve gorgeous billionaires whisking me off to their red rooms or sparkly vampires, you won’t be seeing my life story played out on a big screen. I did purchase a bottle of urine the other day (and I’m quite pissed–get it? PISSED?!–that the holiday shipping woes mean I won’t get it until next week), so that’s probably going to work its way into a blog post soon, especially if our UPS guy pulls his usual douchy stunt of crushing everything he delivers. Actually, no…that is the story: our UPS guy is a douche and he crushes everything, so I ordered a bottle of urine just for the fun of having him explain that to his bosses.

But per the headline of this post, MERRY CHRISTMAS (or whatever appropriate holiday-themed greeting goes here in your world), and I promise to try to do better keeping this blog alive. It’s been a banner year for our handicapped goldfish, so maybe I can do it.

It’s Possible I’m Going to Eat You When This Is Over

So I was bored the other day and started looking up recipes. Don’t get excited, I don’t plan to cook anything. I just like to look at the pictures and read the recipes and think to myself, “Wow, people who have time to make cornbread and shove it up a turkey’s ass really need to invest in Netflix.”

Even though I don’t plan to put any effort into cooking something, the thought of experimenting with recipes was intriguing so I started to take stock of my own culinary expertise. I eventually realized that the only really great recipe missing from my life is for a human marinade. Why would I need to marinate a human being, you ask? Please. It’s like you don’t even know me.

Let’s avoid violating the Fifth Amendment for a moment and assume that I need this awesome human rubbing spice concoction in case the apocalypse happens. Which apocalypse? Doesn’t matter. I’m just a girl who likes to be prepared to slow roast my fellow man in case of pending starvation…or in case I need to hide the body.

AllRecipes.com was shockingly low on marinade recipes that would fit the bill, so I had to do a little comparison shopping on my different cuts of meat and cross-reference the whole project with what I’d assume an actual person tasted like. We have to take into account things like the fact that adult humans should be fairly stringy and have used their meaty muscles a lot, in which case an alcohol-based marinade will help a lot with the gamey taste. We should also consider the fact that the apocalypse might end up being surprisingly low-carb once all the bread stuffs have molded, so I’ll want a sauce that pairs well with different natural sources of gluten and shrink-wrapped saltines. Sugary marinades are probably not a good idea because the last thing you want at the eat-your-neighbor end of the world is to be sluggish  since you’ll just end up marinating in someone else’s cook pot before nightfall.

Cooking methods were another conundrum. The obvious choice would be grilling over a low flame while the remainder of the meat smokes for later consumption, but the smell of succulentness will just bring on the hordes of hungry survivors and you’ll end up fighting for a pinkie toe before it’s over. Boiled meat is never good (sorry British readers), and we’re already eating a low-grade meat as it is. I think certain methods of cooking the meat in a pit of coals while covering it to trap the smoke might be the way to go.

Before anyone gets nervous or fidgety and thinks I’ve put way too much effort into my research, let me tell you that I drew the line at looking up good side dish recipe, for obvious reasons…I mean, what goes with human hamstring, right? Nothing! And besides, if I had a bunch of side dishes lying around, would I really be resorting to cannibalism? At least that’s the defense I plan to use with the judge.


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