Bad Things: Osama bin Laden, the Media, and Stepping on Cheerios

Understandably, a few people have told me to make bin Laden my Bad Thing for today. I’m not going to concentrate on him very much, because he got what he deserved: he’s dead. That’s not a Bad Thing. I’ve been seeing a lot of facebook statuses and tweets quoting Ezekiel 18:32 and saying we shouldn’t be filled with joy that anyone is dead. Part of me understands this. We shouldn’t feed hate with hate. However, we CAN and SHOULD rejoice in the fact that justice was served to someone who had it coming to him. The correct message was sent. If you attack our country and kill thousands of our innocent civilians, we’ll (eventually) hunt you down and kill you. For the record, I’m totally cool with that.

 Do not rejoice at the death of the man. Rejoice because he will not cause death again. – Sarah Brandon

My fiance watches the news constantly. As much as I appreciate having a significant other who gives a damn about what is going on in the world, CNN 24/7 can be a bit much. I’m a positive person. Also, I can be a little naive. I believed my parents sent our dog to a farm with horses and fields he could run around in until I was 18 years old, when my brother told me the truth one day over a delicious meal at Sun Sun. Visions of Laddie frolicking in wildflower-filled meadows with butterflies that leave trails of glitter behind them instantly vanished from my head, and along with my innocence, my appetite for the steaming pile of beef and broccoli disappeared.

Where was I? Oh right, Tom watches the news a lot. So anyway, positive/slightly naive people can only take the news in small doses, or else our heads will implode. Of course, the positive thing about living with someone whose heroin is CNN is that you’re always in the know. Around 10:20 pm on Sunday, Tom came bursting out of the bedroom. “SOMETHING IS HAPPENING OBAMA CALLED A PRESS CONFERENCE FOR 10:30 AND HE NEVER DOES THIS THIS IS VERY RARE FOR OBAMA TO BE GIVING A PRESS CONFERENCE THIS LATE ON A SUNDAY NIGHT SOMETHING IS HAPPENING.” The closer it got to 10:30, the more hysterical and concerned the newscasters seemed to grow, in turn sending me into a panic. At one point, the male newscaster on MSNBC said:

“Okay so we’re getting reports that Obama is going to announce that…What? Oh wait, I’m being told to hold it. Hold it? Okay, sorry. Sorry folks.”

And I was like SERIOUSLY, SIR? Tom just kept repeating “THIS IS BIG SOMETHING IS HAPPENING,” and my mind was going a mile a minute. Did we come in contact with aliens? Did they tell us they were going to eat all of our heads? Zombies. Someone ate some bad meat or something and turned into a zombie and now they are biting people and making more and more zombies.

Then the news broke that bin Laden was dead. Tom and I collectively cheered, and then I immediately started to cry. Why the tears? 97% because I finally felt a significant amount of closure in regards to the event that forever changed this country and forever changed my generation. The other 3% was because my head wouldn’t be eaten by a vicious alien. But the Media are on my shit-list this week for keeping me in such uncomfortable suspense and saying things that made me start schvitzing like a pudding at a picnic. “I don’t want to speculate, but he is going to announce something we will be digesting for days, maybe weeks.” “For the President himself to speak at a press conference this late on a Sunday…well, this has to be huge. Can’t speculate, but I mean really big.” “This is going to be something that is probably going to change the face of our nation, but we’re not going to speculate.” It was literally the longest ten minutes of my life. I get it, I get it. They don’t want to relay the wrong information. But the newscasters need a little work on their poker faces in this post-9/11 world of ours.

On a lighter note, stepping on Cheerios is terrible. You know what I’m saying? You step on a Cheerio, it makes that poofy crispy crunchy noise and leaves a ring of Cheerio dust on the floor and on the bottom of your foot. It’s the worst. Ladies and gentlemen, first world problems.

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Good Things: Friends Who Have Interesting Lives

You know that friend who has a really interesting life and you thoroughly enjoy hearing about said life but would probably never have the guts to actually do anything they do? For me, that friend is Andrew. He just started a blog about the newest chapter in his life: moving to Prague to teach English as a second language. He takes lots of great pictures and talks about his adventures in what he described to me as the most “beer drinkingest” city in Europe.

  • Culture:
“The wonderful people at Vayama sent me an e-mail reminding me to make sure my passport and all that was in order as well as reserving my favorite seat or special meal. Along with this, they provided me with a link of some etiquette to keep in mind while in the Czech Republic. Some things that popped out to me:
1. Dress Attire – DON’T wear shorts unless you are partaking in sports or going swimming.
Not incredibly happy about this.
2. Table Manners – DO praise the food and ask for seconds, even if you’re stuffed.
Better find a gym once I’m over there.
3. Tipping – DO tip using cash. Putting the tip on your credit card is considered rude.
Gotta start carrying cash. Drag.
7. Socializing and Conversation – DO talk about sports, especially hockey or soccer. DON’T assume that whoever you are conversing with has religious beliefs. The Czech Republic is largely an atheist and agnostic country and proud of that fact.
Soccer and Atheism, sounds like my kinda place.
  • Food (Andrew is a vegetarian/dirty hippie):

“After seeing all the sights and sounds of the castle and old town, we stopped off at a beer garden where we parted ways with our tour guide. Had a few pivos [beers] and food. I had czech pancakes with veggies and potatoes. Really good. Some people got fish (and to my surprise, and I can only imagine theirs, got an entire fish. It was at least gutted and served with butter and lemon). Others got duck or chicken and got half a bird (literally half of a bird that was on a rotisserie and then cut in half and put on a plate). After seeing a few restaurants and the local grocery, something tells me I’ll be eating meat around here.”

  • Teaching English lessons:

“So after team teaching 2 lessons, I’ve learned a fair deal. First and foremost: I talk too fast (and probably too much). The first lesson went well. It was an intermediate class and they had a pretty good grasp on the english language. There were still some glares like “What is this stupid American saying?” and one woman actually told me that I talk too fast for them to understand. After. That. I. Tried. Really. Hard. To. Annunciate. Every. Word.”

  • The view from his flat:

Keep up with Andrew’s Prague Blog (Haha! That almost rhymes) here: Andy, You’re a Star: Adventures Abroad

Bad Things: Poor Spring Fashion Decisions

SPRING. It has finally arrived. Along with the sunshine and flowers, inappropriate and often hideous clothing starts to creep out, too.

First, let me just say that the general idea for this Bad Things was submitted by Casey. I love when people send me ideas. It requires less thinking on my part – so please feel free. And don’t be offended if I haven’t used your idea yet. It’s on a list, I promise. My e-mail is listed on the “About the Author” page. Or tweet me @mollymckenna. I love Twitter so much. Okay terrible spring fashion decisions GO.
Continue reading Bad Things: Poor Spring Fashion Decisions

Good Things: Discovering the Key to Playoff Happiness

So, the Bruins are in the playoffs. My fiance is a HUGE Bruins fan. I’ve mentioned in previous blog entries that the outcome of a Bruins game totally makes or breaks Tom’s mood. Currently, they are playing the Montreal Canadiens, and Tom DESPISES that team. When the Bruins lose to the Canadiens, it’s equal to someone ripping Tom’s heart out of his chest and eating it in front of him. The Bruins lost the first two games, both of which Tom watched out in the living room. He superstitiously decided to watch the third game in the bedroom, which they won, so last night, he HAD to watch it in the bedroom. They weren’t doing so well in the beginning. Usually, I avoid looking at/talking to Tom when his team is losing. It’s just not worth the possibility of dying. But last night, when I began to hear guttural noises (much like the sound a dying cow would make) coming from the bedroom after the Canadiens took a 1-0 lead, I decided to try something a little different. Continue reading Good Things: Discovering the Key to Playoff Happiness

Why is Twitter Exploding?

Note: This is an article I wrote for Digital Pivot, a branch of Talent Zoo Media. For the original article, click here.

If it seems like everyone you know is suddenly getting a Twitter account, you’re not hallucinating. According to Twitter, they have had a 50% usage increase over the past five months. So what gives?

Twitter has become the go-to social network for short bursts of thought. One-liner Facebook statuses (“Off to the gym!” or “Out to dinner!”) are becoming fewer and farther between. Over time, Facebook has developed a certain etiquette. Statuses like that, along with over-posting, are considered annoying and may just get you unfriended. Twitter is different. With its 140-character limit, Twitter was made just for that sort of thing. And over-posting? Not that big of a deal on Twitter. You may lose a follower or two if you’re totally hijacking their timelines, but there seems to be a higher tolerance level for multiple tweets on Twitter than there is for over-updating on Facebook. Continue reading Why is Twitter Exploding?