Tuesday, December 29, 2015


As this wet and now snowy year winds down, I continue one of my favorite Stranger traditions. In the days after Christmas each year I start compiling my frustratingly-vague and probably obnoxiously-boastful list of the year's happenings.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

People of the Gym

We all fall within one of these designations. ALL OF US.

January Man/Woman:

This is someone who comes to the gym in January only. This person can be seen wandering the floor, politely using half a dozen machines incorrectly and dangerously. He/she shows up the first Monday after New Year's Day and comes very consistently for that whole week. He/she shows up once or twice after that in January, and then usually never again for the remainder of the year, although there is sometimes a cameo sometime around the beginning of the summer.

King Kong:

This is a very large round man with enough testosterone to power a small city. He is usually heard before seen. He lifts extremely heavy weights off of the ground and then drops them onto the floor. Repeatedly. He also often screams when he does this. Between each action, he walks in a small circle, arms out on each side, looking menacing. It isn't clear what King Kong's goal is, but it's usually best to just stay out of his way.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

The Top Ten Most Viewed Stranger Posts of 2015

As the year starts to come to a close, I decided to bring you another year in review. I went through Stranger's posts of 2015 and picked out the top ten posts most viewed by you. There were some surprises. And it was definitely interesting to look through. And you guys. I know. The year isn't over yet. But I'm just going to post this because I don't have any intention of writing anything good between now and December 31.


Sunday, December 20, 2015

Christmas Concerts

Every December my family goes to some kind of Christmas concert together. We all look forward to it greatly, even if the concerts sometimes turn out to be terrible.

Actually, attending phenomenally-bad musical productions is my family's absolute favorite thing to do together. About 12 years ago, for example, we were required to sit through all two hours and thirty minutes of The Gristmill Pageant in Tooele Utah, which you did pronounce incorrectly unless you live in this state. It was an entirely lip-synced presentation about the founding of Tooele Utah, which is not something about which many people have ever wondered.

The play revolved around a very old grandma (read: a young woman in a grey wig) sitting in a rocking chair at a family reunion, telling all of her grandchildren about how Tooele came to be. The lights would periodically flash to center stage where the ensemble cast would dance and lip-sync the story grandma was telling.

Of note, one of the children performers, a young girl, in a teenage-angsty voice, proclaimed at the beginning of the play, "Grandma, Iiiiiiiii'm bored. When do aaaaall the cute BOYS get here?!"

She asked her grandma this. AT THEIR FAMILY REUNION.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Pictures from my Phone & Weekly Distractions

Tonight I was at a concert with my family. Part-way through Cathie asked if I wanted any gum. Then she opened her purse and it was filled almost to capacity with Trident. The only other thing I saw in there were two lemons.

Keep us guessing, Cathie. Keep us guessing.

And now, your Pictures and Distractions:
Mr. Pants was helping me with laundry.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015


You guys. The worst thing that can ever happen happened today. Snowmageddon hit Salt Lake City. WHERE I LIVE.

Bob woke me up this morning with his routine phone call he makes to all four of his children throughout every winter, informing us that it snowed and asking us not to live our lives by going outside or doing anything whatsoever. Cathie can usually be heard in the background yelling redundant instructions.

I informed Bob that I would probably just work from home if it really was all that bad and he congratulated me for my wisdom with a tone in his voice like he was considering nominating me for family member of the month, which is a really difficult thing to win in any family in which Cathie resides.

I looked outside and discovered that more snow had fallen over night than all of last winter combined. I actually don't think that's an exaggeration. Can I get an amen from any of my SLC brothers and sisters?

For reasons I spent the remainder of my day trying to figure out, I decided to attempt to drive to the office rather than just work from home, which was a perfectly viable option.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Pictures from my Phone & Weekly Distractions

The other day I wrote about how I'm basically Oprah now because I was on the news. I shared the link to the news broadcast. Well one Stranger, Logan, suggested that everyone troll the comments section of the news link. If you haven't looked at the comments recently, go look now. This is all reminding me of that time nearly three years ago when you all brilliantly trolled that TMZ article asking to help identify Britney Spears's new boyfriend.


You Strangers rock my world.

And now, your Pictures & Distractions.
I was criticized for keeping my phone in my front pocket like this so I posted this picture on the Instagram to ask for everyone's thoughts and then I got attacked on Instagram for buttoning my top button and now I don't have self esteem.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015


You guys, I had my five seconds of fame yesterday.

I was wandering down Main Street, minding my business, politely singing Jenny From The Block quietly and to myself, when I was abruptly pulled aside by a news man with a microphone. 

He asked me if he could interview me and I was all like "OMG PAPARAZZI I CAN'T GO ANYWHERE" but then he asked me what my name was and I realized that this wasn't a celebrity interview so I was really offended. 

It wasn't a huge surprise that I was selected from among the masses because first of all I was having a pretty good hair day, but second, I was the only person on that stretch of sidewalk who wasn't still drunk from the night before. NOT THAT WE KNOW WHAT DRUNK MEANS, CATHIE.

I've never turned down an opportunity for attention so obviously I agreed and subtly shifted so the camera would be on my good side.

Then the interview started.

Monday, December 7, 2015

When Cathie Gets Bored

Bob and Cathie came to my house on Saturday to dump a bag of Christmas decorations on me. Cathie knows that if she doesn't engage in this annual ritual, very little to no Christmas decorating will happen in my home. And Cathie considers such a thing a violation of all Ten Commandments, an undermining of the rule of law, and disrespectful to the Constitution and Magna Carta.


Failing to approach the Christmas season with enough cheer to power a small country is as serious a sin as murder in Cathie's eyes. If Cathie was God, at The Great and Terrible Day of the Coming of the Cathie, the only thing she would consider in separating the wicked from the righteous would be whether the person's holiday decorations were put out early enough during each of the last five years. I'm pretty certain that she could be attacked by terrorists during dinner time and not have any hard feelings about it as long as she was aware that the terrorists had a nice Nativity set in their living room.

She marched into my home carrying so many black garbage bags full of various Christmas decorations that it made me wonder if her vehicle somehow violates the laws of physics in the Mary Poppins bag kind of way.

Cathie and I don't have the same style. We decorate differently. At least, that's how I describe it. According to her, my taste is "wrong" and hers is "obviously correct."

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Pictures from my Phone & Weekly Distractions

I texted Rebecca yesterday to tell her that I decided not to eat gluten this week in order to prove to her that gluten allergies aren't real. She responded that this didn't make sense and that my not eating gluten could never prove that there is no such thing as gluten allergies. I insisted she was wrong about this. But now I'm starting to second-guess myself because I haven't eaten anything that tastes like food in four days and I'm starving and angry and I can't see or think anymore OMG THIS MUST BE HOW REBECCA FEELS ALL THE TIME!

And now, your Pictures & Distractions:
John Michael got me to go to my first ever tailgate party. Apparently there was some sort of sports game event after. It was very cold. I complained a lot. 

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Christmas Sweaters

Recently I told you about how I went to IKEA even though it is the worst place in the history of all places and I'm even including the DMV in that.

That night was chaotic. Matt and I broke every single law of every country of the world just trying to get that couch home so Matt could put it together without any help from me whatsoever.

I didn't share with you, however, the most ridiculous thing that happened that night. This was because in the middle of all of the IKEA madness, something else happened and that something else deserved its very own post.

Matt had texted me in the morning that he had scheduled a very special adventure and he told me I needed to wear a nice Christmas sweater for it. I didn't know exactly what this adventure entailed, but he had already offered to pick up my IKEA couch and put it together and then take me to the airport later that night to catch a red eye flight so I figured I should just do whatever he asked at that point.

The thing he scheduled was at a store called West Elm in downtown Salt Lake City.