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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Travel Broadens The Large Intestine

I'm not a psychic but I predict that by the time you finish reading this paragraph you will be extremely envious of my position.  I'm on vacay with the fam in Aruba. That's right, we left the pouring rain, record breaking levels in fact, to beautiful 81 degree weather, turquoise blue water and white sandy beaches. It is gorgeous over here.

We are staying at the Divi Tamrajn All Inclusive Resort - same place as last time. All your food and drinks are included. What that means for me and Mikey is an endless glass of Heineken. Sweet. The only problem is, the bar doesn't open until 11am. Now, who drinks at 11am you may ask? Well, on vacation we've been known to start at eight in the morning. The two hours between breakfast and the bar opening can seem as torturous as a day at the library.

We learned our lesson from the last time we were here so we came with a plan. To kill those hours we are forced to stay dry, we will work out at the gym and sweat out off the booze the hard way. I know - eww. What kind of moron works out on vacation, you might ask. But if you've ever worked hard to lose those tough last pounds you know that undoing it all on a vacation is just unforgivable. I finally got rid of the post-pregnancy pounds and when I tried on my bathing suit yesterday it felt really good. P90X doesn't call itself for no reason - it really worked. Besides, it makes the beer taste better.

The only thing to hate about Aruba is getting there. I hate to fly. The security points are a hassle and I can't believe that it's making air travel any safer. Plus, the airlines just want to charge you an extra hundred dollars for everything. We were seven pounds over on our luggage and for that they would have charged us an extra hundred. So we took some shit out and stuffed it into our carry on. No big deal but it did make me realize that we could never smuggle the baby in our bags to save on airfare. At least it's a good excuse to not have to buy any souvenirs.

Better than any t-shirt or refrigerator magnet is the gift of broadening the mind. Our five-year-old took his first swim unassisted by floating devices in the pool yesterday. Kazuki was so hot when we arrived at the airport that all he could talk about was going in the pool. Since our rooms weren't ready, he didn't have his "swimmies" but he was so gung-ho about getting wet that he jumped in the pool without them. Next thing we knew, he was doing his doggie paddle and staying afloat - they grow up so fast.

As for the three-year-old, he lived up to his name of Christening a throne in every place he visits. During our lay-over in Atlanta, he warned us that he had to "go poopies" just as the plane started to board. Knowing Isamu, when he says he has to poop - he really has to poop so, I took him to the bathroom and watched this huge brown torpedo slip out of his butt. In a way, I guess I just say this because I'm envious of his nerve. And considering his older brother is the king of constipation, I should probably count this as a blessing. As we walked out of the bathroom - him five pounds lighter - I told him that now he could tell people he took a dump in Georgia, too.

So as I watch the sunset from our balcony, drinking perhaps my 17th glass of Heineken (it's six ounce glasses folks), you may still be harboring that jealously from the first paragraph but take comfort in the fact that I will have to go home eventually. And one day it will be you sitting on this sandy beach blogging a "Ha-Ha" to my sorry ass but until then, I will continue to enjoy the sun while my house back home floods with rain water.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Low Priority

Ah, the plight of the middle class. Seems like we're always paying the most taxes and in return we get kicked in the ass. Last night, I attended my first PTA meeting. The agenda: save our After School Program. The Commissioner of Out Of School Time has considered our working class neighborhood "low priority" and wants to put us on the chopping block.

You know, I think I'll try using that excuse the next time my husband asks if he can get some.

"Hunn, I'd love to but right now I can't give you anything because your request, for me, is low priority. Goodnight."

I kid but this is serious. Losing the After School Program, I mean. It's disturbing when the system fails the people it's supposed to serve but as adults we know better than to rely on it. But for it to pull the rug out from underneath the feet of children is just plain wrong-wrong-WRONG. These "commissioners" don't understand that kids do not absolve our short-comings simply because there's a legitimate excuse. No, they remember them - forever.

Tell a child, "we don't care about you anymore" and see what happens. They go ballistic, they get high anxiety, they breakdown and it's all because they are tuning in to the primary fear of abandonment. And that's what this program cut is - abandonment. Now you see it, now you don't. Hey - look over there - whoosh! I'm gone. Keep your eye on the ball...aww, you lost.

When Assistant Commissioner Chris Caruso was asked to explain why cuts weren't made across the board instead of eliminating over thirty programs, Mr. Caruso's reasoning was it would diminish the overall services the After School Programs could offer. In other words, take it all away from three to overfeed one.

In order to operate five days a week, offer holiday camps and extended hours, over thirty schools will have to completely shut down their program so that schools that are deemed "priority" according to 2005 census statistics can continue theirs. I don't know about you, but I think if the parents and teachers and students of the surviving programs were asked to make a sacrifice so that everybody could continue to have them, they would agree unanimously. But why should the opinion of the People have anything to do with executive decisions - after all we were dumb enough to vote these officials in, in the first place.

I thought City Council member, Jimmy Van Bramer did a fantastic job rallying up the audience with his pledge to dedicate action "everyday" in restoring our funds. If you would like to help, you can write a letter to the Commisioner.

Hon. Jeanne Mullgrave
Department of Youth and Community Development
156 William Street
New York, NY, 10038


Thanks. I'll owe you one.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Would You Censor Your Kids Singing?

Censoring music is wrong. I agree, there are a lot of famous entertainers who simply lack talent and so they replace creativity with shock value. But the way I see it,  censoring insipid performers like Eminem, doesn't change the fact that he sucks and it certainly won't derail a child's curiosity to say a forbidden word.

As a parent, I do the best I can to curb my bombs and peppering in front of the kids. Sometimes, though I can't help it. We live in New York. You can't walk ten feet without running into something that makes you say, What The Fuck!? Barbarian taxi and limousine drivers, sanitation department jerk-offs and their dust scattering street sweepers - and the piles and piles of dog shit. If I kept it inside, I'd have a brain tumor the size of Schwarzenegger's head.  But it's cool, yo. My kids know better than to repeat what I just said.

On the occasional slip, my three-year-old simply demands, "Say sorry, Mama. You just said a bad word." Of course, I comply - it's all he's required to do should he test the waters and say "shit" when a toy breaks.

Then I wondered about the songs he's been repeating off of our i-Tunes. Sure, it's okay for the kids to sing "I like to move it-move it," or "Life is a highway, I wanna ride it all night long." But when they chant, "My hump, my hump, my lovely lady hump," that's when we get a few raised eyebrows.

Sooner of later, he's going to figure out the chorus to "Last Of My Kind" by Alice In Chains - that might get me in trouble at the library. He sang "Blitzkreig Bop" and had no problem figuring out the lyrics on his own. As a matter of fact, he corrects me if I don't sing it his way. I'm hoping he'll flub the curse words like he does with other words but then I think, who am I kidding? With my luck, he'll sing all the lines with "shit" and "fuck" loud and clear. He will probably sing it over and over again, like some crazy digital sound loop but even then - I don't think I'll censor his singing.

I might tell him to not sing that song when he goes to church with his Grammy or when he's at Pre-school or when he's taking a dump in the public bathroom at Stop n' Shop but I wouldn't tell him to stop singing it altogether. And I'd refuse to alter the lyrics.

What would you do if your kid sang a song with expletives - would you censor your kids singing?

Saturday, March 20, 2010


No matter how bad traffic gets in L.A., Atlanta or even Washington, D.C.(since they drive like they govern) it just doesn't compare to traffic jams in New York. And I say this because New Yorkers simply can't wait for anything. Not a cup of coffee, a delivery and certainly not to arrive at a destination - waiting to New Yorkers is equivalent to Damien attending church.

So when we got stuck in traffic on the way to Bear Mountain today, you would have thought I lead us to the apocalypse, they way my family reacted. Luckily, the GPS asked if we were going to listen to her now and when we agreed the rest was smooth sailing. We were soon traveling the open road again, driving at warp speed with my husband spewing every conceivable profanity to the car he caught up with.

It was a beautiful, spontaneous family trip. Bear Mountain can always be counted on for a good time. Sadly, the Bear Mountain Inn is still closed - it had a gorgeous lounge with Heineken on tap - those were the days. But now we have the outdoor jungle gym playground by the lake and the carousel to look forward to.

Our family excursion today taught me a couple of valuable lessons.  One, it's almost impossible to hear the GPS when you have the windows rolled down in a car blaring music at two screaming kids. Two, it's best to listen to your instincts when it tells you that taking the George Washington Bridge is a stupid idea and lastly, that the three-year-old is eventually going to sing the line "you f*cking liars" from an Alice In Chains song.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

What Do Graco And Toyota Have In Common: Recall

The Consumer Product Safety Commission or the "government" if you're a journalist, is recalling 1.2 million high chairs made by Graco. Something about plastic cracking and unexpected tilting caused twenty-four infants to sustain some form of injury. Apart from hairline fractures, most of the injuries were bumps and bruises but in my opinion, I think high chairs are unnecessary altogether.

Really, what's with all the baby gadgetry? Diaper Genies, wet wipe warmers, eight-hundred-dollar bugaboo strollers - any parent who thinks this kind of crap is going to make their baby happy needs a slap in the face. Although high chairs are useful in large, tiled kitchens, I can tell you that it's nothing but a big, loathsome mess in a small New York apartment.

I got rid of ours after two months. The padding was caked with baby food and crumbs, making it a cockroach's buffet and after the four-thousandth time I stubbed my toe on it I said, "That's it! You are outta here!" The high chair - not the baby.

After that, the baby ate on a booster seat that strapped onto a regular chair. It was portable and it fit in the dishwasher - presto-magico no caked on mess and no unexpected tilting. Of course, he was about seven months by then so, a booster seat was no problem.

But when it came time for little brother, I had no high chair to start him off with. Because he was too small for the booster seat, I fed him seated in the Bumbo chair.

Placed on the floor with a mat underneath, it was just as effective as when he would sit on Grammy's lap for dinner. She was, beyond a doubt the safest chair for him to sit on. No uncomfortable straps, soft cushy seating and buoyancy if he wanted to stand all the sudden and again, no unexpected tilting. But since she couldn't be around for every meal, the Bumbo filled in rather well.

Now, I am aware the Bumbo had been recalled by the same "government" because babies were getting hurt but in most cases it was the parents lack of common sense that was to blame. What person in their right mind would place the Bumbo with a baby in it on top of a chair - it has no straps. You couldn't even invoke Murphy's Law, it's just inevitable that down will come baby, Bumbo and all.

And I simply don't understand people who leave an active baby unattended for a long period of time on anything. Whether it's a playpen, a high chair or a dozing Uncle everything is a potential hazard for a baby. Yes, that means life is on hold for a couple of years but we aren't living in the seventies anymore - these days, we care for our children.

Shame on you, Graco for being so greedy...oops sorry - that was line was used on Toyota.

The Day After - St. Patrick's

You know a lot of Irish people live in your neighborhood when you see 50 million cigarette butts in front of every bar the day after St. Patrick's. Oh and there's also twenty empty little White Castle boxes, packets of eviscerated ketchup and greasy french fries strewn down the block like some drunken path Hansel & Gretel dropped to mark the way home.

Yeah, Sunnyside was a mess this morning but I didn't come across any vomit. Those Irish can really hold their beer. The most I ever drank without puking was six pints of Guinness. I once drank eight and made the fatal mistake of taking the Metro-North to Port Chester to visit my sister. Luckily, I had nothing to eat, so when I tossed my cookies it just looked like spilled pints of Guinness. Thick, black liquid rolling down the aisle like a mad river.

And probably because of goobers like myself, this year the Metro-North and the Long Island Railroad banned drinking alcohol on their trains just for St. Patrick's day. That's discrimination if you ask me. St. Paddy's day is a day for drinking, you can't force revelers to go dry! That's like banning food from the St. Gennaro's Feast. Could you imagine how many dead Council members would wind up at the dump?

Ah, whatever. The Irish have survived worse - heck, if they can chow down White Castle's after some serious drinking, their guts must be made of steel.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Genius Pants

This is an open letter of thanks to all the public school teachers for staying late and meeting with us bewildered parents last night. I'm truly inspired by the dedication and passion with which our children are taught. I can only guess how hard it must be to mold twenty little minds whose only desire is to play and eat snacks but so far, you are doing an awesome job.

My heart goes out to you for trying to work with the unrealistic standards our education system now deems necessary. In truth, I just want my kid to be happy in school - I don't care if he can write a novel in Kindergarten. But what can we do if we're competing with China or Sweden or whats-his-land? Blame Canada, I guess.

Most of the parents with boys were given the same lecture: he needs to focus, less fooling around, finish what he starts. And the teachers know what we want to say, "but they're boys." But they know that's not going to work for First Grade.

The next school year, my five-year-old (he turns six in October) will be required to copy down his own homework and collect the required workbooks to bring home. I'm thinking to myself, are you f*cking kidding me? My kid can hardly remember to come home with all his clothes, how can I expect him to copy down his homework? I might as well ask him to start shaving.

It is a little outrageous and the teachers seem flustered. They want to teach - not drill. And now that I think about it, all those times I used to threaten my boys that I'd send them to Military school if they didn't behave may actually be happening. But we've been blessed with good teachers - knock on wood(I'm knocking my head).

As for the verdict in last night's Parent-Teacher conference, our son is doing surprisingly well. He would do better of course, if he wasn't so busy being the class clown or the gossip king. His teacher, Mrs. Mifsud was quick to tell us that she hates sending him home with a sad face on his behavior sheet but sometimes she just has to. And I understand, especially when she tells us that even the janitor checks in on him during class to make sure he's being good.

So, we voted to give him more responsibilities at home. I'm fine with that, nothing disciplines a child better than hard labor, I say. Maybe have him clean out the fireplace. Oh - we don't have a fireplace. Okay, then make him dig out a fireplace first, then clean it out everyday. Let's see them try that in China.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

To Catch A Movie

How sad is my life right now, that I have to wait for a kids birthday to go to the movies? The last time I went to the movies was probably the day after Christmas - of 2008. But yesterday's birthday party for my son's kindergarten classmate was well worth the wait. About twenty children and their parents enjoyed a 3D showing of Alice In Wonderland.

This was my first 3D experience since movies got all high-tech-digital and I was blown away. Now I know what all the hype is about. It almost seems like a waste not watch a feature available in 3D. It was funny hearing the kids scream at every object that flew at them and the final fight scene was so intense a few kids actually cried. I'm surprised my son didn't piss his pants with all the soda he drank.

Tim Burton could have gone his usual route of making this movie dark and sad but I'm glad he didn't. The scenery still had his trademark creepiness but the vibrant colors and the goofiness in all the characters was a welcome departure to what I'm used to seeing from Burton's movies. Even Johnny Depp who has a tendency to make his characters a little too indifferent, made the Mad Hatter actually endearing. Perhaps it was the super big green eyes and the gap in his teeth that kind of reminded me of Frodo.

The Tweedles were hilarious and I loved, loved, loved the Cat. And I knew, even before I saw the credits that the voice of the Catapillar was that of Alan Rickman. What a hot voice. But my five-year-old was obsessed with the Queens. Both the White and the Red. The whole train ride home he made me review all the little quirky things they did before his short memory span erased it to make room for new sight words, like Eat Me.

I know I don't get out much, so who am I to recommend a good time. But seriously, if you haven't seen Alice In Wonderland yet and there's a 3D showing near you, I highly recommend it.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Scamming Scum-bags

I hate scammers, con artists and hustlers. They may be tolerated in France but the French tolerate body odor, too so what does that say about them? America was built on self-motivation - our ancestors had to come here because no one could stand them in their own country. They came here with nothing and made something out of themselves - now what kind of sick person scams people like that and is okay with it?

Yesterday, I received a packet in the mail from "Cambridge Who's Who." The letter says, that I was "recently appointed as a biographical candidate to represent Queens, NY."

Now, what that means exactly - I don't know. But this "biography" is supposed to appear in the Cambridge Who's Who registry. Big deal. What the hell is that - dunno.

It goes on to say, "The Director thinks that [I] may make an interesting biographical subject, as individual achievement is what Cambridge Who's Who is all about."

Now I see what they're doing. They are trying to hook an ego-maniac. A mark whose vanity would never question the interest in his or her life. They appeal to you even further by providing a link - "your personal website" - that includes your name in the url address.

And if you can't get to a computer, all you have to do is fill out a postage paid postcard.

Well, they got the wrong person. And you know what I'm going to do? I'm going to send back their postage paid application and leave it blank. Furthermore, I noticed their little coding on the bottom left corner and took it out so they just paid to get this back for nothing.

If these guys want my money, they can try to come to my house and steal it like an honest thief. At least they'd run the risk of finding themselves at the wrong end of a shotgun. It's still a more noble way to end a career than coming in second on American Idol.

a-WAR-ds! Huh! What Is It Good For?

Have you ever won an award? I haven't. Well, except Employee of the ahhh, Company Christmas Party once. I was happy when I got it but I think it was due to inebriation on everybody's part.

Other than that, I can honestly say I have never come in First Place for anything. Spelling Bees, Star Search, even with my kids I come in after the two grandmothers. I'm feeling like Rodney Dangerfield here, ya know - the whole respect thing.

Anyway, is it any wonder that I didn't know the Academy Awards happened already? I found out when my husband was on the computer and told me that Jeff Bridges won Best Actor. I thought the news was current and still in progress until my husband said, "No, you dummy! The Academy Awards was on this past Sunday."

You can tell I'm not a big TV watcher - I'm on Y.T.T. YouTube Time.

I still don't know who won Best Picture. It's really the only category I care about even though winning it won't motivate me enough to actually see it, I'd still give a rather formidable reaction that could fool anyone better than Palmolive Marge. I suppose I could Google it but what's the fun in that? No fussing over sticky envelopes, tension before announcing the winner just three dots (...).

If you would kindly comment to this post stating who the winner was, I'd be much obliged. And while you're at it, let me know if it's worth renting at our Library.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Little Brother Is Watching

I drink a pint of ice water in the morning. It wakes me up better than a cup of Joe, plus it doesn't make me want to take a gigantic dump for ten minutes. I do have to pee, but that doesn't take more than a few  seconds. Precious seconds that my five-year-old took advantage of this morning by stashing little brother's Power Ranger figures into his backpack.

Unfortunately for him, little brother was watching. As I washed my hands I heard the little socialist rat out his big brother as he screamed, "You can't take my Power Rangers toys to school, Zuki!"

I said nothing about it. They were ordered to put on their coats and shoes and as they were preoccupied with zippers and velcro straps, I quietly unloaded the toys and stuffed them under the pile of blankets. The unsuspecting Kindergartner happily skipped off to school, probably even patted himself on the back for getting away with murder.

What I would pay to have seen his reaction when he unzipped that front pocket of his backpack and saw nothing inside.

Yes, mom's a stinker but I think the lesson of this story is, don't do anything illegal while Little Brother is watching.


My five-year-old came home with an assignment on Friday: for Women's History Month he must read about a famous woman, write two sentences about her achievements and paste a picture from a magazine or whatever.

The "suggestions" listed the obvious, Amelia Earhart and Indira Ghandi but I can't believe the list was topped off with Oprah. I suppose that's where the suggestion to find a picture of our subject in a magazine comes from because I haven't seen Amelia or Indira in the news lately.

At first, I thought of all the women I knew that made history. For me personally, a few came to mind: Evita Peron for having a musical made after her, Imelda Marcos for all those fucking shoes and Madonna for just being so annoying. But I don't think the teacher would have appreciated my picks. 

Strapped for time, I asked Grammy if she'd stop by the library on the way back from the dollar store and see what biography she could find. It was quite a gamble because the Sunnyside Library has a tendency to not have any book you're looking for. Turned out luck was on our side -- Grammy came back with a children's book on Susan B. Anthony.

B. Anthony, as my boys like to call her, would have never crossed my mind. I know the name only because she was on the hopeless one dollar coin that everybody thought was a quarter, hardly a commemoration for a woman who had done so much. Honestly, I only found out just how much she changed history as a result of reading the biography with my kid. Fighting for a woman's right to vote, helping the slaves escape north to freedom -- I thought to myself, this chick's alright.

I should have foreseen that my five-year-old would get upset that she had died fourteen years before a woman's right to vote was enacted. He was rather upset about Charlotte dying in Charlotte's Web even though Wilbur moved on like Paul McCartney did after Linda Whats-her-face. But in truth, I didn't know she didn't get to see the fruits of her labor.

The little guy finally felt better after I explained that America is a better place thanks to B. Anthony, even though she had not been alive to see it. She wasn't the first and she certainly wouldn't be the last to make sacrifices for reform - I just can't think of anybody who is doing that right now, other than the average Joe's they write about in Reader's Digest.

When we finished the book, I asked my son to think of two sentences about B. Anthony to write in his report. The first was easy, she was helping women to vote.

"Okay, what else did she do?" I asked

He thought hard for a moment. "She got old," he said.

The problem was he was right -- she did get old and that does answer the question. But I pressed on searching for an answer until finally he remembered that small skit she had helping the slaves find their freedom. This was how his report read:

"Susan B. Anthony wus halping wmn to vot. She halpt slavz to run uway."

They are encouraged to sound and spell the words out on their own - thus the cacophony in spelling. Then again, his daddy don't do much better.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Baby's Got A New Toof-brush

I really have to change my habit of being early for an appointment. Every time I give myself an extra thirty-minute window -- because in New York it doesn't take a Chilean earthquake for the trains to screw up -- I always wind up with forty minutes to kill. Go figure.

On my own it wouldn't be a problem, I would just read a book. But escorting an excited three-year-old to his first dentist appointment, I learned that every minute in the waiting room is more torturous than waiting at the DMV. I hadn't even taken my coat off and already the three-year-old was climbing through the window of the playhouse. The little girl inside probably wouldn't have been so terrified if he wasn't screaming "Somebody check my brain!" at the top of his lungs.

While checking in, I saw him moving in on every kid with a goody-bag for finishing an appointment.

"Did you get a toy?" he asked a little boy. When the boy nodded he pressed on, "Is it a Power Rangers?"

When he tried to pilfer a sticker from a little girl, I had to intervene. Needless to say, when he finally got his own goody-bag he plowed through the stickers in four seconds, threw his yo-yo on the floor and seemed upset that there was no Power Rangers doll inside.

At least he got to see the dentist - something he was looking forward to for the longest time. Referred by a friend, the Kids Dental Village in Woodside was outstanding. The atmosphere, the tiny examination chairs, the silly sunglasses for the big light they shine into the patient's face and of course the staff are totally kid friendly.

I wish I knew about this place for my five-year-old's first visit. I made the mistake of taking him to a regular dentist who was recommended as being "good with kids, too" but that was far from the truth. She couldn't be bothered and left when my son, who was three at the time, couldn't come to grips. She was awful, like the female version of Steve Martin's character in Little Shop of Horrors.

It is important to find a pediatric dentist, not just any dentist who happens to see children. I mean if you think about it, seeing a dentist can be a distressing experience for an adult, imagine how threatening it must seem to a child.

And if you're wondering what age to bring your child in, our dentist Dr. Pabrim stated they like to see kids as early as a year and a half. Better late than never.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Ma, Flush The Toilet

My mom always had this thing about not flushing the toilet after she pees. Ever since I was a kid, I remember lifting the toilet lid and seeing a small mountain of toilet paper just floating away.  Although it's not a crisis like David Sedaris' poop story in Me Talk Pretty One Day, it's still a rather annoying discovery.

Nobody wants to work twice at flushing. It's a very perilous act depending on the toilet. You could be sprayed or be the lucky person who gets the clog. And really, how proud can you be of your waste that you need to save it for the next time.

I don't know what she thinks she saving by leaving the flush for the next person. Saving water? Hydraulic energy? Maybe she's looking for praise or leaving it as a reminder that indeed she did relieve herself because she's always forgetting her keys, so why wouldn't it slip her mind that she tinkled? And perhaps she just plum forgot to flush but then why bother close the lid? Just forget it altogether - Pee and Flee - it's a little more understandable.

In case you're wondering, I did bring it up a long time ago when I lived at home. Her response was typical of any confrontational issue, "Well, you got a lot of nerve."

How asking someone to flush the toilet after they use it equates as having a lot of nerve, I can't say but I think the answer is to hide all the toilet paper from her the next time she comes over.

Please Allow Me To Introduce Myself

A little more than a year ago, I started posting blog entries to my .mac website named, MY TASTY FOOT. The blog page, titled What Now? was a fun experiment that was the start of my writing endeavor.

As much as I love ragging on my family, I decided it was time to move the website forward, target an audience and try to make it a bit more professional. Well, it's a plan.

As a result, I will be using this blog posting site for the everyday pet peeves that are getting under my skin at the moment. I invite you to share these P.M.S. moments with me and if you can say it better, please feel free to comment!