Tuesday, June 27, 2017

TIP TUESDAY: I HATE BUZZZZZWORDS

Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

My job search has reminded me of how much I hate buzzwords. Some of the job descriptions I've read make absolutely no sense. One said that the employee's duties would include "onboarding clients." What? Put them on board? Is it a cruise?

Favorite Young Man calls this kind of writing "corporate speak." I don't know the language.

Unless you're writing for a specific audience, avoid buzzwords.

Here are some buzzwords I can't stand:

Empowerment
Face Time
Impact (instead of effect)
Paradigm Shift
Stratcom
Unpack
Come-to-Jesus Moment
Downsizing
Logistics
Offshoring
Benchmarking
Synergy

I'm also amused by all the Web sites that tell me if I have even one typo in my resumé, then the potential employer will toss it in the trash. But the job descriptions are full of errors!

One of them said that the employee needed to have 205 years of experience. Wow! That company needs to hire someone much older than I am. The descriptions have plenty of misspelled words and misused words, too.

Someone needs to hire Your Queen of Grammar to write the job descriptions.


Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug


Thanks, fishducky!

Sunday, June 25, 2017

A STORY ABOUT MY SON AND A CANADIAN TREE

Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

When Favorite Young Man was a rowdy Favorite Young Boy and The Hurricane was so little that she didn't even show signs of becoming a tropical storm, we lived near Seattle. Every now and again, we'd hop on a ferry to visit the beauty that is Canada.

On one trip, we spent the afternoon in Stanley Park in Vancouver, British Columbia––one thousand acres of heaven.



We went to an outdoor show at the aquarium:


It was a perfect, early summer's day.

We also strolled around the park for a while, and stopped where we saw swings and children playing so Favorite Young Boy could expend some of his boundless energy. Now, you have to understand something about the person who is now Favorite Young Man. When I popped him out at the hospital, he came out screaming I'm gonna end up with all sorts of injuries and scars from skateboarding, roller blading, bicycling, and a bunch of sports. I'll cover myself in tattoos, too.

Therefore, Favorite Young Boy didn't find some other kids with whom to play tag or claim a swing. No, he ran off to climb a tree.


Before we could say, Where in the hell has that kid gone now? he had his foot stuck in the crook of a tree and was hanging upside down, well above the ground.

He has always sworn that his father and I simply stood there and looked at him while he swayed in the breeze, but in reality, we dashed over to pull him out of the tree. On that one occasion, he did not suffer any injuries.

The subject of You stood and looked at me while I hung upside down in the tree continues to come up, but now Favorite Young Man has changed his tune. Last week he told me that he wished we had left him in the tree so he could have become a Canadian.

Hell, yeah, I said. Some nice Canadians would have pulled you out of the tree, taken you home with them, and given you an excellent childhood. Now you'd be a happy Canadian. What a mistake we made when we saved your sorry now-tattooed ass.

No doubt the story of the boy in the tree in Stanley Park in Vancouver, British Columbia, will come up again, as these tales do. Until the day I die, I expect to be accused of standing around to watch as he hung upside down in the tree. But now, I stand accused of eventually rescuing him when he could have had a better life as a Canadian.

I can't win.


Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Friday, June 23, 2017

FRANKLIN FRIDAY: I'M LETTING PENLAPEE WRITE WITH ME TODAY

HI! HI! Hi Hi Hi Hi Hi! It's me me me me me me me, Franklin the Bordernese, and I'm with my sister Penla who Pees! Hahahahaha! That's not really her name, but I made a funny so I laugh.


Penlapee and me wanna talk to you today because we have something we want, and we don't always get it.

We have this Human Brother. Mom calls him Favorite Young Man. It's okay if Mom goes outside with us during the day when we potty, but before we go to bed at night, we want Human Brother to take us out. Sometimes he's not here at bedtime. Sometimes he's asleep. He should be here for us every night.

Mom doesn't understand about us wanting Human Brother. She says there's no reason we can't go out with her.

Here's why we want Human Brother:

Penelope––I am so sick of Franklin spelling my name wrong that I could spit. Human Brother knows that my name is Penelope and not Penlapee, and he's not afraid to tell Franklin that he's wrong. Mom Mom laughs when Franklin calls me Penlapee. I'm sick of it. Sick, I tell you. Human Brother is at work during the day, but sometimes he's here at night. I wish to take advantage of that time frame; therefore, he should be here every night.

Franklin––Human Brother is tall. He is so tall. He can see over all the fences so he will warn us if monsters come out of the dark.

Penelope––Human Brother is very nice to me. He pays attention to me all the time when he's at our house, unlike Mom Mom who goes off to get sloshed on margaritas.

Franklin––Human Brother is kind of stinky. He takes showers, but he gets stinky again right away. I love the way he stinks. I could sniff his butt forever.

Penelope––Human Brother is strong. He's the strongest person I've ever seen. He is strong enough to take care of us if something scary happens out in the dark while Mom Mom is sloshed on margaritas.

Franklin––Last year we had a hurricane named Matthew, who is Fishducky's son. Matthew made the wind blow hard. Matthew made the rain fall for hours. Human Brother stayed with us the whole time that Fishducky's son was here. Human Brother protected us from Matthew.

Penelope––Mom Mom is drunk all the time. We are safe with Human Brother.

It's up to me, Franklin the Bordernese, to finish up here. I think you understand now why we want Human Brother when it's dark and scary outside. But that stuff Penlapee says about Mom, who is not named Mom Mom, being drunk? It's not true. And my sister's name really is Penlapee. Okay I love you bye bye.


I'm not letting that dog have the last word. It is I, Penelope. That is all.


Wednesday, June 21, 2017

DON'T CRY FOR ME ARGENTINA

Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

Here are the answers to the queries I posted yesterday in TIP TUESDAY: STUCK ON PHRASES.

a day that will live in infamy--Franklin Roosevelt 
military industrial complex--Dwight Eisenhower
dirty tricks--Richard Nixon
grassy knoll--John Kennedy
Don't cry for me, Argentina--George H.W. Bush

The phrase from Bush is the one that none of you knew. Here's the complete quotation:

“You cannot be president of the United States if you don’t have faith. Remember Lincoln, going to his knees in times of trial and the Civil War and all that stuff. You can’t be. And we are blessed. So don’t feel sorry for — don’t cry for me, Argentina. Message: I care.”
President George Bush, Sr., speaking to employees of an insurance company during the 1992 New Hampshire primary  (source: 20 of the most ludicrous political quotes of all time--you might enjoy clicking on the link; it includes Bill Clinton's words about the definition of is).

Now, as for "there is no there there," yes, it was written by Gertrude Stein in her autobiography when she recalled her childhood in Oakland, California. Although it has come to mean a lack of substance or truthfulness, Stein most likely meant that when she visited the home of her youth, nothing was the same. 

Recently, I Googled images of homes that I lived in as a child. I agree with Ms. Stein. Those houses are nothing like the way I remember them. Nothing of me is in those properties.


Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

TIP TUESDAY: STUCK ON PHRASES

Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

Two weeks ago I wrote about avoiding clichés HERE, and it made me think about phrases we associate with U.S. presidents.

Without googling these words, do you know the U.S. presidents with whom these phrases are linked, for better or for worse?

a day that will live in infamy
military industrial complex
dirty tricks
grassy knoll
Don't cry for me, Argentina.

And here's a photo I like, complete with the foolish phrase of a newspaper editor or publisher:


When Favorite Young Man spends the evening with me, we often watch MSNBC (yeah, you know we're liberals). We're quite tired of certain phrases associated with current politics. Some are used ad nauseum by various politician or their defenders, and then they tend to be repeated by those who comment on the news. Either way, we want these words to go away:

nothing burger
double down
There's smoke, but is there fire?
big league
There isn't any there there.

Again, without Googling it, can any of you tell me the source for "there is no there there"? You earn a million bonus points if you also know the original meaning.


Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Thanks, fishducky!






Sunday, June 18, 2017

A STORY ABOUT MY DAD AND A MOUSE

Happy Father's Day, Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

When X, Favorite Young Man, The Hurricane, and I moved from Washington state to Maryland, we lived in Laurel for three years. Laurel would have been small townish if it hadn't been halfway between Baltimore and D.C., and, thus, had very heavy traffic. Laurel itself also grew because more people were moving farther away from the cities.

We moved into a beautiful and very expensive (the real estate market was almost at its height) townhouse in Laurel. It was part of a new development that had a large wooded area behind its first street, the street on which we lived.

When we'd been there less than a year, I began to suspect that mice visited us. I saw a few of what might have been droppings, but I never saw a mouse or any other evidence of a mouse.

Then one evening when X was out of town, Favorite Young Man, who was about eight years old, left the family room on the first floor for the kitchen on the second floor. Within minutes I heard him squeal as if he'd been attacked. I ran upstairs to see what was wrong.

A mouse! he said. A mouse ran out from the right side of the kitchen and went all the way to the left and underneath the washing machine!

He didn't look like this:



He looked more like this:


I'd never encountered a mouse before! What to do?

What to do?

I picked up the phone to call my dad in Topeka, Kansas. He told me how to set a mouse trap.

I don't think I can do that, I quavered. Why don't you get on a plane and take care of it?

I really wanted Daddy to get on a plane, fly to Maryland, and get rid of the mouse—even though I knew he couldn't.

Daddy told me that he knew I could set the mouse trap. He was sure I could. He was positive.

He always had more faith in me than I had in myself.

I miss him.


Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug

Note: We were plagued by mice the entire three years that we lived in Laurel. Our brand new housing development had displaced the home of mice and other small animals. Raccoons were especially good at opening the garbage cans in the back of the house to help themselves to a meal.





Friday, June 16, 2017

FLASHBACK FRIDAY: WHO OWNS THE BED?

Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

I've applied for more jobs this week. All of the positions are apply-online deals, so I receive an email that says my application has been received and the hiring team will contact me for an interview 
when they fall in love with my mad skills 
if they're in the mood
if the job really exists
if the company actually exists 
if . . . whatever. 

This job hunting business is a real time suck, but I don't want to ignore all of my best friends so I have a Friday

for you. I first published this post on June 14, 2010. It's had 65 page views.

It was my first full summer in Florida, and I took in a foster dog who had cancer. I named her Robin. She wasn't with us very long, but this post describes what happened as Robin took over my life and my bed.


Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug



Poor, pitiful little Robin who is dying of cancer started out as a cuddler in my bed.

Poor, pitiful little dog, I thought. She is so starved for affection and attention. I was simply thrilled to give her the love she deserves.

But cuddling has turned into a turf war; that is, who owns the bed?

Before I can get in the bed at night, Robin hops in and settles down smack dab in the middle. I have to push and shove her as best I can so I can join her in bed. For a poor, pitiful cancer stricken dog, she is mighty heavy and strong when she plants herself in her desired spot.

Last night, I barely got into the bed, and when I did, I was allowed only enough of the sheet to cover half of myself. Robin was on top of the middle of the sheet and would not allow me to pull more onto myself.

I awoke frequently during the night, finding myself in danger of being pushed out of the bed. Robin, I said, You really must let Mommy share the bed and get some sleep.

I was exhausted this morning because I spent the night fighting for a spot in what used to be my bed.

So the question is: Who owns the bed?

The answer is simple: Robin.