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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Back By Popular Demand...

...and for a limited time only, I bring to you my coverage of The Turkey Testicle Festival with a few add-ons.

I walked in like I bought the place, even though my heart was heavy as I just learned my Uncle Giant lost his battle with cancer. “The show must go on,” I could hear him say in my mind. And so it did.

Unscripted, in a town I’ve never been, surrounded by people I’d never met, they threw me right in as if we’ve all been life-long friends. At the main gate I said, “I’m Lois Lane, I’m sending in an audition tape to The Tonight Show, and I would like to film what goes on around here if that’s okay.”

I never told them that I didn’t really want to be on the show, I just wanted to fulfill a triple dog dare, that’s where you guys came in egging me on, which I’ve grown to be thankful for. By the way, Frank, the founders son who I interviewed in the first part, had the most contagious little giggle, listen closely for that.

So as you and yours gather 'round for your big feast tomorrow, remember to be thankful the turkey nuts aren’t in your mouth. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Please read my post below. It’s especially important for those of you who battle your weight. It doesn’t have to be a battle.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Live Like You Were Dying

As the holidays approach, a lot of my friends are freaking out about their weight. What is it about the holiday season that makes people beat themselves up? Holiday traditions in ALL countries, cultures, races and religions revolve around food, why freak?

If you think now is the time to worry about your weight, you’re going to miss out. Think about Santa for a second, you don’t see him skipping out on a plate of cookie-goodness do you? Enjoy the holidays the way you’re supposed to by eating, drinking and being merry.

This is going to be a different type of post than your average Home Fires insanity because I‘ve had this very same talk with too many friends to count. I want to put it out there as plain and simply as I can. I am not a doctor or a fitness guru, I just know this “common sense” stuff works. You’ll never find a diet book written by me because this is all you’ll ever need to know to get fit and stay fit.

First of all, you could learn a lot from a two-year-old. Absorb that thought before continuing.

Number 1, stop giving a shit about shit because stress can make your body hold in fat. (It has been scenically proven.) If you can change something, change it, if you can’t accept it and move on. Little kids don’t worry about shit, that’s why the majority of them aren’t fat.

Being happy and carefree are the two key ingredients to a happy, thinner us. Seriously a 2-year-old finds happiness in a commercial with a catchy jingle, and we get pissed at the very same commercial because we know that song will be stuck in our heads until 3 am.

We get pissed off at the sweet blue haired old lady in a matching powdered blue Cadillac because she is driving so slow in front of us. There is literally nothing that can’t or won’t wait for our arrival. So take that slow drive behind her in, like a kid would, take in the scenery, be happy about something, everything or nothing.

If you have a stress-filled life, you’ll cling to your weight, and it will cling to you, so just don’t. If you have a situation where you aren’t sure how to remain calm, put it in the comments and I or the readers here will try to help.

Once you conquer your stress level, the rest is easy peasy lemon squeasy, just follow the steps below.

1. Eat when you are hungry, not bored. (When you’re bored, go for a little walk outside.)

2. If you think you are hungry, drink a glass of water, wait 20 minutes, if you still feel hungry then guess what?! You are ready to eat. (do this as many times in a day as you feel hungry, you’ll be surprised how many times you were just thirsty)

3. Remember your stomach, not the bulge under your shirt, not the shed over your tool, not the muffin top that may look more like a whole bakery, just the organ… your stomach, it is supposed to be the same size as your fist. (ball up your fist, look at it, are you eating more than that much food in one sitting?) Your fist is your portion control. Only eat a fist-size portion, and only eat it when you’re hungry, after you’ve had a glass of water.

4. You can eat ten times a day if you are really that hungry, and you’ll still lose weight as long as you follow all the rules.

5. Do not deprive yourself, ever. If you want chocolate cake, eat the fucking cake. Not eating the cake and really wanting the cake equals stress. Stress equals fat. Cake tastes way better than stress. ‘Nuff said.

6. If you have to, use a smaller plate or bowl for your food. I’m a former member of The Clean Plate Society. Mom would kick some serious ass if there was any food left. Okay, since getting Mom’s nagging voice out of my head was nearly impossible, I just began using a salad plate rather than a dinner plate.

7. Avoid fast food as much as possible. Even skinny people get heart disease from that shit. If you love it so much and think you want/need it, remember… it is usually 16 year old, pimple faced kids, who rarely wash their hands, who spit when they talk, which may or may not land on that food they are making for your consumption. You’re welcome.

8. Eat slowly, chew your food properly. If you inhale your food, you’ll still feel hungry when you’re supposed to be done. Plus, you won’t be able to enjoy the flavor if you Hoover it down.

9. If you think you need seconds, you’re wrong. Save it for a meal later in the day or for lunch tomorrow.

10. Go outside as often as possible. The fresh air will do you good and so will the sun. The sun puts off vitamin D, which helps our immune systems. If you work in an office or are at home all the time, chances are you get sick more often than people who hang billboards or do outdoor work.

11. Vitamin supplements are good but not essential if you eat healthier than your average Lois. You can take a daily for men/women and an extra C and D during flu season. Your body naturally expels the vitamins it doesn’t use, so it’s okay to take all three every day.

12. The final and possibly most important rule, NEVER, EVER eat until you are full. Filling yourself stretches that organ called your stomach. You should only eat until you are no longer hungry. Satisfied is good enough.

Now, I’ll tell you why this combination works, and starving yourself or going on a fad/crash diet doesn’t.

This is a change of life. You will reprogram yourself to eat the way our bodies are intended to eat. This is nothing but old school common sense. In today’s society, we want bigger… and better and that’s okay for smiles, laughs, cars, houses and wallets, but not okay for our bodies.

The amount of health problems that come with being overweight are too many to list. Just know that changing your lifestyle through how you eat, will make you feel much better. Fad diets are very radical and our bodies will rebel. If you lose too much too fast, your chance of regaining is inevitable. The stress that causes to your insides isn’t worth it. How many people do you know, went on a diet, lost a lot of weight rather quickly, gained it back and then needed to have their gallbladder removed? I know a lot! It’s your body’s way of saying, screaming, “What the fuck have you done now?!”

If you’re one of those people who thinks starving themselves makes you thin, you are 100% wrong. Your body gets confused when you do that. It holds in everything you put in because it doesn’t know when you’ll give it more. By eating several meals each day, you are encouraging your metabolism to resurrect itself.

Once your metabolism, pulls a Jesus, and comes back from the dead, you’ll feel energized. You may even, dare I say, want to exercise?! I know, it’s a crazy concept but it will come naturally.

The water flushes the shit out of your body. It isn’t an old wive’s tale to drink 10 glasses a day. It is essential for good health. Here’s why:

1. It flushes out the fat and toxins from your body. (you won’t always piss like a race horse that’s just in the beginning)

2. It clears your skin, helps winter itch by hydrating from the inside unlike lotions, which also helps smooth out wrinkles.

3. It fills you halfway so you can’t and don’t want to eat as much.

4. It increases your metabolism, you will feel your heart beating a little faster, it’s kind of like tricking your body making it think you did some exercise.

5. It helps balance your cholesterol and blood sugar levels.

6. It keeps your ever aging beaver from drying out. (It’s 100% fact, that dry sex isn’t nearly as good… just don’t ask me how I know.) If you're a guy, know that a well-hydrated body has better circulation, which means...more blood flow to the main vein, which goes back to the "bigger better" theory.

Remember, you can drink too much water, which can kill you. So don’t do that because dead blog buddies aren’t any fun at all. Stick with the glass before each meal and you’ll be fine.

Bottom Line Proof:

You’ve all heard of Ponce de León, right? Spanish explorer blah, blah, Fountain of Youth, blah. Well, even way back in the day people worried about the way they looked. They wanted to be thinner and younger looking. So they traveled to these natural bodies of water seeking a better them.

What they didn’t know was they were looking great and feeling great because they were getting out of the house, taking in fresh air, getting a bit of sun, drinking more water than they ever had before, and they had to walk/hike to get to many of the remote locations. Back then, they knew about real portion control. So they were halfway there.

It had nothing to do with any magical waters. It was simply a combination of the Four Basic Elements “air, fire, earth and water” and you say, but Lois, you never mentioned fire. Well, duh, you got your dose of Home Fires, right now, so there.

If you are up for it and want to make changes in your lifestyle, get some thread or dental floss and a pair of scissors, a piece of paper and some tape. No, go right now, I’ll wait.

Okay, welcome back. Now, relax your gut, lift your shirt, wrap a piece of string around your middle intersecting with your belly button as a landmark of sorts, cut the string exactly where it meets in the middle of your middle, tape it to the paper, label it tummy.

Take another piece, doing the same with each of your body parts, hips, thighs, chest and arms (you may need help for that one) do not lose your paper.

This way of measuring is so important. A scale is nothing but a big, fat piece of lying, self-esteem crushing, dust collecting, bathroom dwelling asshole. The way your clothes fit differently, or a scale won’t tell you as much as those strings will.

In four weeks you are going to be ass deep in holiday magical goodness and that is when you are going to take the strings off the paper and re-measure your body parts. You can take a marker to color the string where it now meets, so you can see all the extra string just hanging there where your muffin top used to be.

How many inches of extra string you have depends on how fast your body likes this new way of life. Remember, everyone is different. (Certain medications may slow your progress but don’t give up.)

Final step, take a picture of yourself, a close up of your face, a second of your whole body and a third of your whole body profile. In two months, after the dreaded holidays have gone by, I promise you will see a difference. Your hair will have more shine, your skin will be smoother, your clothes will be looser and you’ll be so hot you will get your final basic element for real…fire will come when your significant other can’t keep their hands off of your hot ass.

I am Lois Lane, and I approve this message.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

The Kooks, Down To The Market

It was a whirlwind having so many visitors after Rosie O’Donnell posted the link to Home Fires on her blog. In five years, there’s never been over 500 visitors in one day here. Looking at my crazy cat lady post, I wondered if it was a good enough first-impression to get new people to come back.

Then on Rosie Radio yesterday, she too talked about her own animal magnetism with her guest Sonya Fitzpatrick. Sonya is an animal communicator with a radio call-in show, where she helps her listeners get into their pets (past and present) heads. I realized, I wasn’t alone in all of my kooky killer kat konnections.

So if you happen to be one of those new visitors who read my last post and thought I was insane. Congratulations! You were right, but at least I’m not alone.

The prize I won arrived. There were a bunch of Rosie Radio stickers, a magnet, a trinket box, a T-shirt from Pop That Zit dot gag com, Rachel Ray dishtowel oven mitt combos, a whisk and a set of rubber spatulas. My favorite thing was a small book, “u r an artist” that has prints of various collages Rosie made with news clips, photos and paintings. It’s like a scrapbook into her soul, full of life, emotions and talents.

Thank you, Rosie!

I took a second job at a gas station/mini mart this week in an attempt to recoup from our summer of suck at La Love Shack De Lane. (It sucks so bad but that’s a story for another day.)

Day one, I made a rookie mistake. This guy walked up to the counter holding a package of hot dog buns. He raised them up to show me and said, “Just this.”

I reached my hand out so I could scan the barcode. He didn’t get the hint. So I said, “Can I have that for a second?” Because saying, “I haven’t memorized the price of every single item yet, asshole.” is just rude.

Confused, he said, “What?”

Annoyed on the inside, game face on the outside, I smiled and said, “I have to checkout your buns….(silence) I mean, I need to scan your buns…shit! I mean, give me that package, please.”

Lucky for me the guy had his head so far up his own ass he had no idea what just happened.

Friday, November 06, 2009

I'm Sorry I Can't Be Puuurrrfect

If previous lives are real, there is no doubt that I once was a crazy cat lady. My house probably stunk to the high heavens of ammonia, and I likely lived on canned cat food. Why would I think such a thing? Because sometimes I feel so connected to those fuzzy little bastards it isn’t even funny. (Remember the story of Chip? If not, email me and I’ll send it to you. It depicts an odd connection between human and beast.)

As much as I love animals in general, I would prefer none live in my house. But when you have kids you can be coerced into the damnedest things.

Patches is my daughter Lane 2’s cat. She was an abandoned dying ball of cuteness that stole my kid’s heart. Being the sucker kindhearted person I am, I agreed she could stay. She fit in the palm of my hand back then but had an evil streak as long as my legs.

With her eyes barely open (maybe 3 weeks old) I was hand picking fleas off of her because she was too young and frail to use chemicals on. She purred as she stretched her tiny neck forward. I thought it was really cute how she seemed to be trying to help. That is until the little bitch stretched a smidge further and bit my chin. She didn’t just bite it, she clamped on to it like something out of a Tom & Jerry cartoon. With a kitten dangling from my bloody chin, I reflected on my life as a crazy cat lady.

Who would keep such an evil beast? I’ve wanted to send her to “live on a farm” PLENTY of times in her nine lives, but knowing how my kid loves her, how could I? And what kind of example would I be setting as a mother if I were to imply pets are disposable?

As she ages, her crankiness grows. She growls like a bear, rarely purrs and LOVES, for no apparent reason, to bite any Achilles heel that is within her reach. Seriously, you can’t walk by her without being attacked, unless you are Lane 2.

She is an indoor outdoor cat that only leaves our property to chase bunnies and birds. She refuses to use a litter box and stands at the door meowing until I let her out so she can shit in my garden. Fun! When she is done, she paws at the door to come back in. One day, she didn’t return.

Lane 2 was a mess, much like I was when Chip vanished. She’d rush home from school, walk around the neighborhood, shaking a bag of cat food. It was heart-wrenching seeing my kid so sad. I didn’t actually worry about the cat until she was gone for several days.

I got a bug up my butt to make some calls on the 5th morning. I was going to wait until 9 am since that’s the normal time places open for business. But something inside of me felt almost panicked to get the calls made. (this is where the crazy cat lady intuition comes in handy)

I pulled up an online search of all the shelters in my county, picked up the phone at 8:50, called animal control. They said they only deal with dogs. I called the nearest shelters, she wasn’t at either. The Google page had the local vet’s number listed too so I thought, maybe they would know where found pets are sent. I called to find out they had a couple of cats there. One of which was a calico.

It was with the vet’s assistant… getting put to sleep.

I asked her to please wait so I could come and see if it was my daughter’s calico. She put me on hold to make sure the deed hadn’t already been done. She came back to the line and said, “If this is your cat, you called just in-the-nick-of-time.” (It was still a couple minutes before 9 am.)

She went on to explain how when she had me on hold, she walked into the room to see the cat on the table, and the lethal injection already in the vet tech’s hand. The police had her for four days and when she went unclaimed, they brought her in to be euthanized.

Are you wondering what the fuck, yet? I was!

Our tax dollars are being spent for cops to chase cats around? And they just put them to sleep even though there are no ordinances on the books about roaming cats here? Maybe an asshole neighbor trapped her and brought her to the death chamber. Who knows?

How can they take an animal, that is clean, flea-free, healthy and spayed and put it down? Isn’t it obvious she is someone’s pet? Setting aside my pissed off thoughts, I went to the clinic to see if it was actually her.

Inside my crazy cat lady radar was screaming, “Even if it isn’t her, we must save it from being put down.” I need a third cat as badly as I need an extra asshole. A mental battle ensued until I arrived at the clinic.

It was her. Pathetic as all hell behind bars in kitty jail, she meowed her cutest meow. Looking at me with big ol’ eyes like she’s been taking lessons from a puppy while in lockdown. The bitch doesn’t even like me, yet there she was putting on the performance of a lifetime.

They insisted on microchipping since she is a fucking Houdini at breaking out of collars. Some 90 bucks later (so glad my old man doesn’t read this blog) I was able to take her home.

When the tech handed her to me, she lunged herself onto my shoulder as if she were hugging me. She purred her loudest purr and nuzzled at my neck. My internal crazy cat lady knows she knows I saved her ass.

I brought her in the house as she continued purring, which she never ever did before. I set her down on the floor by the food and litter box, she looked up at me, still purring and then bit the shit out of my ankle.

I was certain I heard her singing, "Nothing lasts forever. I'm sorry. I can't be puuurrrfect."

Welcome home, bitch!