Tag Archives: Holidays

Single, Nursing Mother Searches for Companion

27 Jan

I made the ridiculous decision of having a New Year’s resolution for 2012. Don’t get me wrong—I absolutely love setting personal goals and working toward them.  Blame it on the Catholic guilt that has stayed with me long after my relationship with organized religion has or on the fact that I really, really hate not keeping promises to ANYONE including myself. Either way, I’m damn good at making and achieving my goals because I pretty much see it as a promise that I can’t back down on. Which is good, but bad…

With that being said, my 2012 New Year’s Resolution is to go on at least two dates a month. It doesn’t have to be the same person twice, it doesn’t even have to be anything meaningful, just getting myself out there and away from men that I have previously fallen for who either live a million miles away, are still living the lifestyle of a college student on their parents’ budgets or decide that they actually like men (he didn’t admit it, but I know it’s true).

I decided to two-time the system by signing up for not only OK Cupid, but also a three month subscription to Match.com. To quote Zombieland, it was time for me to nut up or shut up.

My daily routine during the work week has become the quintessential portrait of the single mother: I come home, I make dinner, I sit on my couch and I nurse my child cat while scouring the two websites for a shred of hope.

My kitten Charlie, who was abandoned by his mother, has apparently come to the conclusion that my shirt is his sustenance. I found out that this is called ‘dry nursing’ after Googling the exact search phrase ‘kitten sucking and licking shirt.’ If the CIA is tapping into my computer God only know what they think. So, I sift through the messages from bald, fat men old enough to be my father and instant messages that are peppered with so much poor grammar that I almost reach for a red Sharpie and start proofreading the screen in disgust all while partaking in my own wet t-shirt contest hosted by my kitten. It’s gotten to the point where I keep old shirts lying around that I change into once the dry nursing has subsided.

The aftermath.

The aftermath.

Trying to date men online that you really don’t know is kind of like dry nursing, though: you’re basically trying to find a shred of comfort and hope by sucking on the dry teat of date sites held together by shoddy algorithms. Most of the time, however, you find that you’ve done all that you’ve can and all you’re left with is an awkward, uncomfortable mess that is nothing like the natural thing. Either way, I suppose I still have some hope left…I just think that I have a lot of shirt changes to go through until I find something worth keeping.

Less Refunds This Holiday Season

21 Dec

All that is left of the returned holiday gifts is this very sad kitty

While sitting in the waiting room of my ghetto pharmacy, I picked up the only option that I had for good reading material: SmartMoney Magazine. And, while most of the articles featured topics that were laced with the kind of jargon that I repeatedly attempt to avoid while studying for my finance class and had the word “portfolio” scattered across each page at least five times, I managed to find quite a gem of an article in the midst of such terribly boring stuff: “The Point of No Return,” by Kristen Bellstrom.

In her article, Bellstrom discusses how many retail stores this holiday season are going to become more strict when it comes to returns. As she reports, one out of ten purchases is returned and, while 10% of purchases does not sound like much, it ends up totaling to a large amount ($43 million) in returned goods not during the fiscal year, but during the holiday.

I mean, wonder if Santa decided to just buy his reindeer for the Christmas season, saved the receipt, and returned Rudolph and his other reindeer buddies after he had finished delivering all of his gifts?

I must say that America, in general, is way too lenient about returns. My international marketing professor even told my class that in some countries refunds (and even coupons) are pretty much banned. It’s like preschool teachers used to say when someone would hand out treats during a classroom birthday celebration: “You get what you get, and you don’t get upset.” Well, whatever happened to that kind of mentality? In America, at least, it has faded just as fast as a laser-printed receipt does when sitting out in direct sunlight.

I remember when I first started working in retail and how shocked I was that people were able to get away with the most ridiculous returns. This one woman came in with a shampoo bottle (and it wasn’t the typical cheap V05 bottle, either) and told me that she wanted to return it. I picked up the bottle and realized it was pretty much empty. When I mentioned this to her, she said “Yeah, it leaked all over and that’s why I’m returning it.” Okay, even if a shampoo bottle did leak, it would take a long time for a large bottle to leak that much. But, as we all know, the customer is always right, and that woman ended up getting a refund anyway.

So, during these last few (and frenzied) days of holiday shopping, I would like to propose a challenge to serial refunders around the country: buy only what you need, make thoughtful and rational decisions when buying gifts for others, and if you do receive a crappy present, learn to appreciate it for what it is, or donate it to someone less fortunate instead of trying it out, damaging it, and then trying to get a few bucks back. It will make you feel happier, more appreciative, and will turn you into a better person. And no one would ever think of refunding a thoughtful, happy person.

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