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Aww, shucks. No – thank YOU.

9 Jan
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After puzzling over the thank you note I received from GW’s Surgery Clinic following my colonoscopy this fall, I decided there was only one way to repay their courtesy: Send them a thank you note in response.

I’m usually not a fan of the endless loop that a “thank you for a thank you” engenders, but in this case, I felt it was appropriate.

Dear GW Surgery Team,

I’ll admit, I was somewhat surprised to receive a note of gratitude from you in the days following my colonoscopy. I mean, Ann Landers has long lamented that manners are dead and thank you notes have become a lost art. (Wait: Actually, Ann Landers is dead. And – ironically – it turns out manners are alive. In any case, your note would’ve made her happy.) 

And my own take? I have to tell you how FLATTERING it was to receive your note. I mean, getting a colonoscopy isn’t fun, and it leaves a person feeling exposed and vulnerable.

So to receive a hand-written THANK YOU note after the procedure? It’s kind of like Ryan Gosling saying, “Hey Girl, thanks for allowing me to roll you over and shove a camera up your ass while you were unconscious.” Except I bet it wouldn’t sound creepy coming from Ryan Gosling, because he’s apparently VERY sensitive.

Anyway, I do, REALLY appreciate the note. I assume (and I’m reading between the lines here) that means the popcorn I’d eaten immediately before my cleanse didn’t really pose a problem? So relieved. For all of us.

In any case, I won’t go so far as to say it was a “pleasure” doing business with you, but I do appreciate your attention to detail, and the personal touch your customer service provides. If it was as gratifying as you make it sound, I only request that in the future you pay me rather than invoice my insurance company. And then, I think, we will have reached an arrangement in which thank you notes are no longer needed.

Until then, many thanks for your appreciation, and appreciation for your gentle ways.

Yours on the table,


Ryan Gosling Hey Girl Meme

Or, to paraphrase, it might’ve sounded like this…

A Non-Pithy Post: Welcome to the World, Natalie!

28 Oct

Dear Natalie Ellen,

I learned via a text message from your mother that you arrived in the world this afternoon. From your mom’s perspective – it was not a moment too soon. She’s been ranting for the better part of a week that she was ready to have you.

In fact, just yesterday she publicly stated that she was going to “plead her case” to the doctor. I, on the other hand, have been hoping you’d take your sweet time and come on Devil’s Night so I could pass the cool birthday baton to you. For your sake, I’m glad you arrived today!

But enough about your entry into the world – I’m sure your mom will never let you forget it, so I’ll leave that to her.

I want to tell you about the family you’re joining. Your mother is my oldest friend – we’ve known each other even before we started nursery school together – so I think I can paint a fair picture.

First, be prepared to be photographed. A LOT. Your mom comes by it honestly and can’t help herself. When you get irritated by it, ask if you can watch one of the old VHS tapes of her playing softball, swimming or at a dance recital – and then you’ll realize it could be much worse. And if she EVER tries to make you take piano lessons, ask her to play something for you first. I assure you: that will end the conversation.

Second, let me tell you now: You WILL be a Spartan fan. Some of your favorite childhood memories will be of tailgating with your parents in East Lansing and hanging with the children of your mom’s college roommates. You will learn from an early age how to “Sparty On!” and you’ll be able to sing the fight song before you enter kindergarten.

Her text from the hospital said, “We’re all doing fine. I’ll be home for the big game Saturday!” (For the record, MSU is currently ranked 5th in the nation and is 8-0 thus far this season. You’ll appreciate that when you’re older.)

As for your grandparents on the Dickinson side… they were like second parents to me for much of my childhood. They took me on my first trip to Cedar Point in second grade – when I was still too short and skinny to technically ride the Gemini. Your grandpa rode that ride with me and held me in the seat the entire ride. That’s the kind of guy he is – he likes a good time and wants the people around him to have a good time too. (Oh, and there’s the time when I completely ruined the cream colored upholstery in his new Oldsmobile Cutlass – because I’d gotten grease all over my ass at a McDonald’s – and he didn’t even raise his voice when he saw the damage.) That one is a very cool cat.

And your grandma – who doesn’t like to be called Grandma because she’s entirely too young for that – is one of the craftiest people I know. Had it not been for her sewing skills, I would’ve been fated to dress as a ghost every year for Halloween because my mom couldn’t sew. Instead, I always got to wear your mom’s costume from the year before – a dog, a dinosaur, a witch, a clown, a tea bag… (I know, that last one doesn’t quite, fit, does it?) She also taught me to cross-stitch and how to make a “Triscuit pizza” in the first microwave I ever laid eyes on.

As for your dad… make him your ally. Your mom is a pretty tough customer, but your dad has mastered the art of giving her what she wants and getting what he needs. That’s a subtle art, and you will undoubtedly need to call on it – especially when you’re in high school and hate your curfew. (If he sometimes embarrasses you because we owns binoculars and goes birding, let me tell you: you will one day find that AWESOME, so go with it.)

Your brother? Well, I’m sure initially he’s not going to be your biggest fan because you’re new to the scene and stealing his thunder. BUT, about the time you hit middle school and kids are jerks, you’re going to be VERY glad to have Nolan hovering around ready to kick some asses. Oh – and when he’s 21 and you’re not yet legal – you’re REALLY going to appreciate him.

There are so many stories to tell; I could write for hours. But you have years to hear the other stories, and trust me – the older you get, the better the stories we’ll tell you. One day you’ll fully appreciate what it is to be the granddaughter of a BOM. Just wait for it.

In the meantime, just know that you couldn’t be luckier. The world welcomes you and I can’t wait to meet you.


“Auntie” Alison

PS~ It is a LOCK that your mom is drinking a Miller Lite tonight to celebrate, if I know her.

Again, THIS is how people find me?

28 Jun

Today’s three google searches that led people to my blog:

  • wow chips warning label
  • fail motto’s <sic>
  • are kashi bars causes of anal leakage

Seriously? Does this mean that if I ever become famous for blogging, it will only be within the poop community? (Whatever THAT is. I don’t even know, but I think I’d have banner ads sponsored by IBD medications… which, if you Google them – as I just did – you will find all seem to have “ass” as part of their commercial name. Ironic, no?)

Anyway, I kind of wish I had an Advice Column, because I would LOVE some details on that third person who got super specific about his supposed connection between Kashi and leakage. Here’s what I think his letter would read:

Dear Pithypants,

I’m hoping you can help me, because I fear there is a causal relationship between eating Kashi bars and crapping myself at work without realizing it. Can you please confirm that this is, in fact, the case?


Perhaps Out Of Possibilities (Poop)

My response would be:

“Depends on how you tried to insert it. More details please.”

And yes, that is why I will never have a famous blog. Because nothing 12-year olds say is riveting.

Wow. Who knew it was enough of a problem that someone started a group?

It’s going to take more than a squirt of Fabreeze.

30 Apr

Dear Dog Owner,

You might love your dog so much that you’re impervious to the scent of his crap, but for the rest of us, it’s the most awful, pungent aroma of all time. We appreciate that you tried to take care of it, but here’s a tip: if there’s still a dark spot on the carpet, you need to keep at it.

Otherwise, you will also have a pile of vomit to clean up.



A Letter: to the woman next to me in yoga today…

19 Apr

Dear Lady:

(And I use the word “lady” loosely for reasons that will soon become evident.)

If you decide to hit a yoga class, how about you show up on time? Because the idea is to get relaxed and centered. And none of that is possible if a woman who is shaped like Sponge Bob comes to class ten minutes late, walking as if she has bricks strapped to her feet, and then proceeds to roll out her mat RIGHT NEXT TO ME, as if there’s not 200 sf of other real estate available in the room.

Further, if you ARE going to show up late (thereby calling attention to yourself and interrupting the channeling of my loving kindness) to nestle in close to me, then please, for the love of God and small puppies, SHAVE YOUR LEGS. Because the last thing I need to see, when I’m in a supine twist (my legs going one way and my head aimed in your direction) is a Hobbit-like leg, three inches from my face. It makes me want to find a grill lighter and start singeing your shin. Not very zen of me, but neither is your hairy drumstick.

I know, I should be all “I love Earth Mothers” and that – especially since I’m into yoga. But come on. If I can find the time to shave my legs (which are SIGNIFICANTLY less hairy than yours), you should be able to find the time to either a) shave, or b) don a pair of long pants so I don’t have to throw-up in my mouth repeatedly while trying to practice ujjai breathing.

Speaking of ujjai breathing – did you hear the song that was playing when you arrived? I think it was supposed to be “ujjai” that they were chanting, but by the time they mixed in the beats and repeated it quickly, it just sounded like “vaginavaginavagina” to me. Did you think so too? If you agree, I might be willing to cut you a pass on the hairy legs for one more session. I just want to know I wasn’t going crazy there on my mat.

Anyway. I’m sure you’ll be more punctual (and better groomed) next time. (See how yoga makes me more positive?)