The FREE Sarcastion Mark

I know some people who are sarcastic. I know a few of them. I might be one of them. But when I use it in writing, I definitely avoid “labeling” it by tossing in an LOL at the end. Perhaps one day I will start a web campaign against LOLs. But that is for another blog entry (or a past one or two or three… nope, just two).

Back to sarcasm.

After graduating from high school, I remember having a discussion with some of my buddies about being sarcastic in emails, which would be our new form of communication (and IMs) as we moved to different cities, different universities. The answer seemed simple enough: a sarcastion mark.

We instituted this new punctuation in our communication, even in our written letters (it was back in 1999 so people still used the mail, shocker).

But eventually, it died away.

I’m not sure why. Perhaps we over used it? Eventually you just realized that an email from Shannon, Sabrina, Lindsey, Erin, Karen or Alison would be spattered with sarcasm. Probably.

Whatever the reason, it came up in conversation with the guys here at work today, labeling your sarcasm in IM conversations. I know there’s been “debates” about it in regards to tagging it in HTML. Yes, geeky, sarcastic debates.

What I didn’t know, until Google informed me today, was that some company back in 2010 attempted to create a sarcasm punctuation mark and SELL it to you to download for $1.99. They called it the SarcMark. Right there was their first mistake. Stupid name. Has ANYBODY even heard of this? Clearly, it has not caught on.

Back to me and MY clever, sarcastic friends. Here in all its glory is OUR Sarcastion Mark. I like our name much better. Sarcastion Mark.

Oh look, it’s already on your keyboard*, you don’t have to download a new font or anything. Begin using it today, for FREE! Wow, how nice are we? Yes, you can thank us for our forward thinking back in the Y2K-scare days. We knew this would be needed by the WORLD one day.

Tell me, do you like our “invention”? Huh? Huh?

(On a totally unrelated note, I had some fun with the banner of this blog on lunch today. If you haven’t noticed already—I’d bet not—there are several different images that might load up each time you open this blog or a page on it. See if you can get each one to load. And they’re all drawn by little ol’ me. Nice.)

(And one more unrelated note, there’s now a feed of articles as they’re updated on Chef Guapo’s blog just to your right. See it in the right sidebar? Cool.)

*In case you didn’t notice, that’s the tilde and the exclamation, which are right next to each other up there above your left pinky. Reach for it, reach for it. Shift and got it. Nice work.

Dustin’s Tower of Terror

Enter the caption contest now! It’s so exciting isn’t it? If you need the rules for this sometimes-weekly contest, click here: Caption Contest Rules Shmules.

Last Contest’s Winner: Lindsey! Hooray for high school buddies. I’ve kept in touch with a small group of girl friends from the ol’ days. We all became closer friends our senior year when we realized, oh yeah, THESE people are my favorites—these are the people who will be consistent friends. Linds is definitely one of those friends. I heart her.

What would YOU do with Veggie Straws?

Enter the caption contest now! It’s so exciting isn’t it? If you need the rules for this supposed-to-be-weekly contest, click here: Caption Contest Rules Shmules.

Last Contest’s Winner: Lindsey, congratulations! I had this image from her caption of Hobbes drinking coffee and all of a sudden, his hair just stands on end. It probably said ‘boing’ when it happened, too. Like in a cartoon.

Shout out for Linds: I was telling a story to my boyfriend the other day about reversing down an alley our senior year of high school with boys chasing us on foot, squirt guns in hand. We should probably sit down one day and write together all of the stories we remember from that one weekend playing senior assassination: breaking into LeBlanc’s house, setting up Andrew to get “killed”, reversing down alleys, our long list of who had who, sleeping at Tracy’s mom’s, holding the bedroom window shut while Weed tried to get in and “kill” me at Alison’s, Alison’s birthday dinner at RedRock, the incident with Marianne, etc. etc. Those were the days…

A Brief Story of A High School Relationship

I had a journal that I started writing in my creative writing class that I took my senior year of high school. I really didn’t like the teacher, but I did like that the class forced me to write in a journal again, after a hiatus of a couple of years. I tried to be more “creative” with my journal entries by telling stories about what had happened to me. Here’s one of them. It’s a bit jumbled, but it might make sense to you. Maybe. Only a handful of you, though, will know what LIBWSE stands for. Do you remember?


I laughed. My laughing did not fit the mood. I knew others were looking at and judging me while they continued singing. I knew, while I was fighting for control over my laughter, that Drew was looking at me while conducting the other singers. I could not look up. I could not meet his eyes. That was Sunday; after Thursday.
Four-thirty, Thursday afternoon, finally reads on the small clock on the table. The last parent collects her little boy and I collect my bag and damp towel. I push the heavy glass doors open and step from the air-conditioned fort into the heat of the first day of July. I am exhausted. Climbing the cement steps to the parking lot takes too much effort. Across the emptying lot, I see my car sitting alone. Something on the windshield catches me eye. Instantly, my thoughts flash through two previous memories:

Was it the end of the first day of work? Walking out with two older counselors, Shannon and Lisa, I listen to them talk. Lisa arrives by her car first. She also arrives by a flower and note tucked in between her windshield and wiper. She pulls them off, smiling, and I continue on, feeling jealous.

Earlier, that same Thursday, starting July, I pulled into the lot and Lindsey’s car, driven by Lindsey, parks next to me. It will only remain for half the day.

I hope that it is a flower or flowers, but thinking more logically, I guess it is a “present” Linds left me of garbage. All I can make out as I approach is that there is clear plastic. So, I don’t stop walking until I step up beside my car and glance over. There, wrapped in clear plastic and white tissue paper sits a flower. I leave it, unlock the car and throw my bag and towel in the back seat. Then, I grab the gift revealing a note. Scrawled on a small, ripped-off paper is a message: “LIBWSE – Drew.” I smile, glancing around the parking lot to see if anyone, especially Drew, is in sight. Seeing no one, I jump in my car and drive off to Lindsey’s afternoon workplace. She will be jealous.

Street Sign Found in England

Enter the caption contest now! It’s so exciting isn’t it? If you need the rules for this supposed-to-be-weekly contest, click here: Caption Contest Rules Shmules.

Last Contest’s Winner: Is Meredith, Janet, Braden and Lindsey, woot woot! Is that just dumb to say it was everybody? I just felt like giving the reasons why I liked each caption. Can you deal with that? Too bad. It’s my blog. Deal with it. Mom cracked me up with the idea that you could buy two Sarahs. I like being greedy. Janet apparently wanted to return the one Sarah. Or at least have the opportunity to if the size didn’t fit. Sounded like she’d be a good candidate to adopt a Russian. And then there was Braden who cleverly referenced Mary Poppins and her bag hopping tendencies. Of course that would have started in her childhood. And last, Lindsey presented a situation where a little toddler was calling for a cab. Ha! Good one.

Look What I Found in the Bag

Enter the caption contest now! It’s so exciting isn’t it? If you need the rules for this supposed-to-be-weekly contest, click here: Caption Contest Rules Shmules.

Last Contest’s Winner: Is Lindsey! Hive five. I know, you think she didn’t post a caption, but actually she did and actually it’s funny, but actually it’s not actually posted as a comment on last week’s post. She actually posted the comment on the caption contest rules (link above). So I’m actually giving you a wee bit of a hard time for doing that, my friend, but we’re still friends. We bonded while reversing through alleys in our neighborhood in high school. Good times in the old Volvo.

It’s All About Your Roots

What does it say about me that often, the highlights of my life, have to do with spending time with my family? Does that make me a dorky home body? Am I “too cool” for singles school? Are my priorities boring or are they just right?

I vote for just right.

You would too if you were in my family.

This got me to thinking about some of my friends’ families and I realized, a lot of what draws me to friends is their families. (Cool people CLEARLY come from cool families.)

Growing up, I spent tons of time with Krista, Erin and Lacy.
Krista had a sister that taught clogging (in their garage where Krista and I had created a BYU club in the back corner*) and then her brother, Griff, lived with us for a while. He also helped me to bring a huge cooler-full of water balloons to a friends’ luau and fall over laughing behind the bush where we were launching them over the roof.
Erin’s dad, we called the Rabbi, because he was always wearing a fedora. As an adult, I’ve played soccer with Erin and two of her brothers-in-law. Clearly, her sisters have good taste to marry these men.
Lacy’s family practically deserves its own blog entry from the “thumb exercises” we did and wouldn’t let her little brother play with us, to the story of the dog bite, climbing cherry trees, the truck with the brick under the brake pedal, chickens in Idaho, and the rekindled friendship with Clancy.

By my senior year of high school, I realized that just down the street lived a new favorite person. I still can’t believe that I went to school with Lindsey since kindergarten and we didn’t become friends until 12th grade. Oh the memories we could have had. We tried to make up for it, though, by packing our senior year full of adventures, from scaring her mom by using the hide-a-key to come in the back door late at night, to backing up alleys during car chases after her little brother showed us the escape route, a car accident that led to a court appearance, and our sadie hawkins video. Priceless. Oh yeah, and her mom is my friend on facebook, her brother, Ben, played the roll of pretend boyfriend in my singles ward to stop the advances of a “special” boy in the ward, and her littlest brother, G, is a friend of my brother.
Other gems my senior year included all of the “unspeakables” including the small percentage of Smiths I have met. There’s just so many, Karen, but so far, I love ’em all.

When I went to BYU, my Ute family was disappointed. I therefore adopted a new family in the Becksteads and was excessively blessed. Who knew Idaho could raise such an amazing family? Wow. Friends for-ev-ah.

These days, I don’t meet my friends’ families as much since we no longer live with our parents and often live in a different state or even countries. Luckily, I have met some and the story is the same: cool people come from cool families. Monica’s amazing family came to my house to host her moving-to-California party and from eating bratwurst to playing muff, it was a practically perfect night**. I haven’t met all of Meghan‘s family, but her parents are amazing, especially her mom’s crepes, and her Grandma adopted me for a while when she lived in Salt Lake. Lucky me!

The list could go on and on, but then the only people who would keep reading are those that are looking for a mention of themselves. Sorry… you just didn’t make the cut THIS TIME.

As for me, though, I’m probably the coolest person in Utah because of the family that I come from. Seriously, internet, if you were with me, Abe (5yrs) and Jane (3yrs) while we were doing Paula Abdul’s Cardio Dance DVD, you would ABSOLUTELY agree.

*In order to gain entry into our club, you had to name at least TWO former BYU athletes who were currently playing professionally. Isn’t that how YOU would define your admittance into a club created in fourth grade?

**It wasn’t allowed to actually be perfect because of the meaning of the party: Moni was moving away. Sigh.

Requesting Handstand Lessons

Turns out, I’m extremely poor at doing handstands when not in a swimming pool. Does this surprise anybody who knows me and my amazing flexibility / gymnastics skills?

I tried, though. I REALLY DID.

There were several handstand contests over the weekend. I lost them all.

But the fact that I TRIED shows that I was comfortable enough to make a TOTAL fool of myself with my new friends.

I didn’t know that I was getting new friends this weekend. It was a good surprise and all part of the new ward… which Lindsey named, “Larrie’s Last Singles Ward.” (I miss actually SEEING my optimistic friend instead of just reading her blog—Daybreak is SO far away.)

I’m not going to give you a play-by-play of my weekend because it was rather packed and, really, do you want to know everything? Even the chores?

Doubt it.

So instead, let me just share with you a few of the lessons that I learned, thanks to the myriad of activities I was involved in and my new friends:

  • Handstands hurt with a cut on your right palm
  • DWil (new friend, male) speaks Spanish that I can understand (meaning he slows it down for me)
  • There are still women out there that think you’re funny, not competition (Chels and Amander)
  • Hanging from a zip line for 5 minutes due to technical difficulties makes for painful hip flexors
  • If you’re waiting in line for 30 minutes to ride said zip line, you might as well take pictures of you jumping (check FB where new friend, male Jeff posted them)
  • Playing with nunchuks after surviving the dreaded grove is like the cherry on top
  • The end of daylight savings means Saturday night goes on and on—why go home and go to bed?
  • We should have more holidays than just Halloween when you can dress up
  • Nieces and nephews deserve more holidays for dressing up
  • Apparently, I wear larger clothing than almost every other girl on my soccer team
  • Strange and rather creepy people eat at Village Inn late on Halloween
  • Swamp rides=kickbuttitudinousness
  • And last, new friends are fabulously sarcasmagoric.

Political link of the day: “Why the Mortgage Crisis Happened

Episode 22: I Truly Heart the Company Gym

It’s truly scrumptious… (random side note after my random beginning: Linds, do you remember dancing to this song from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang in a roadshow? Doesn’t your mom have the video stashed somewhere we could watch?)

Okay, on to my blog for the day.

We have an onsite gym here at work and while it has minimal equipment (like no bench to do an incline or decline chest press and no smith machine), it’s still a great gym for a company. Because of the minimal equipment, I choose to go to 24 hour fitness for my lifting (and because of my superbly LOW LOW membership fees – I rock!). But, turns out, I use the company gym AT LEAST four times a week. Because lists are fun, here’s a list of the reasons why:

  1. Abs / Core class – ever since I royally injured my back, I’ve been commanded from on high to strengthen my abs and core to avoid constant pain; thankfully, I can go to a 15-min class every Monday, Wednesday and Friday because we all know how lazy I can be about working out on my own.
  2. Yoga for the Back – again, it’s all related to my bestest buddy, mi espalda; my company is paying for an eight-week session of yoga classes that I attend instead of eating lunch on Fridays. Oh wait—who am I kidding? I would FAINT if I missed lunch. I eat at my desk on Fridays.
  3. Capoeira – they don’t have this class anymore because the instructor (is there are capoeira-specific title for him?) is apparently too busy, but for a time, I attempt to go against the forces of nature and try to force my body to move gracefully like these martial artists do. (If you don’t know what this is, look it up on YouTube. I can’t look it up and give you a link because they BLOCK those evil streaming media sites at work.)
  4. Health Fairs – anything that provides free goodies and drawings for prizes is something I will go to. I haven’t won anything for over a year, though (last prize was an iPod), so I’m thinking my turn is coming up again, soon… law of averages.
  5. TV – I have been known to take a break to go climb on a treadmill in order to watch TV. There was probably a really good soccer game on.
  6. Stretching – sitting in an office chair all day long is not a favorite activity for mi espalda. Sometimes, I go to the stretch classes; sometimes, I grab Stacky and the two of us go stretch out using foam rollers—is a nice break.
  7. Laughing Yoga – has ANYBODY ever heard of this before? Turns out, one of the PAs in our clinic here is CERTIFIED in this so she’s teaching a class once a week. Sadly, I missed it this week, but next week, I will totally go and take a break to laugh.
  8. Conditioning Exercises – this is a new addition I hope to include in my workouts: conditioning between lifting. One of the instructors in the wellness center emailed me this list with tons of exhausting drills. So if you see me at the gym doing the shoulder press, I will then start doing Burpees in between sets. Gotta get in shape for swimsuit season…