Make me over (for a million bucks)

Last week, I tagged along with a friend to a Rodan and Fields party.

If you’re not familiar (and before this party, I wasn’t), Rodan and Fields is a new direct-to-consumer brand of skin care and makeup products.

(And if you are familiar and I’m not explaining that quite accurately, cut me a break. That’s basically what it is.)

OK. So, I wasn’t sure what to expect. My friend assured me that I did not have to feel obligated to buy anything, but I should just tag along for the wine and snacks and lady time.

Sure, why not?

My experience with these types of “parties” has been limited to a couple of sex toy parties in my early 20s and a Mary Kay event when I first moved to Madison.

The sex toy parties were fun. I think this was in part because it wasn’t like my hosting friends were getting into selling their own inventory of sex toys — as is the case with R+F and brands like Lularoe — but rather a third-party host came into their house to sell for the night, and they just got a discount. So there was little pressure to buy or a guilty feeling of “I should really support my friend in her new business venture,” etc.

Plus, it was fun because we’re talking about dildos, arousing creams and lingerie, not face wash or leggings!

With Mary Kay, I didn’t know anyone personally there, either. It was an “event” held at a pizza joint, and I went because I was getting married and thought it might be a good opportunity to get some higher end makeup or skin care products.

What was especially funny about that event was that I asked my friend Sam to tag along. Sam and I have now been friends for 10 years, but at the time, it was less than a year, so I had no idea that she actually did not wear ANY makeup, ever. She looks good without it, so you wouldn’t even know that, and I didn’t. So my point is just that it was totally irrelevant for her to attend this thing, but she was a good sport and we got free mediocre pizza and I think a few free samples, and I spent about $200. (I got suckered into that because I wanted this free makeup bag kit that came with the purchase….. s-u-c-k-e-r.) We definitely had a few laughs about some of the Mary Kay ladies and their quest for enough sales to get a pink convertible — no thanks, I’m good.

I think we got one follow up text or email from the lady we were paired up with, but after that she took the hint and let it go.

Anyway, from what I can tell, R+F is like the new Mary Kay. It was created by the creators of ProActive, which I have used in the past, but got sick of for two reasons:

• More would always come before I needed it, and

• It smelled bad, IMHO.

But the big pitch is, these people know what they’re doing when it comes to skin care.

Of course, it’s not cheap.

I will say that upon entering my 30s, I have tried to invest a bit more in skin care. I already have gray hairs (I color my hair every month), and I know wrinkles are on the horizon.

Here is a selfie I literally just took, no filters I promise, although I am wearing makeup.

Hiiiii.

I haven’t had to face too many wrinkles — yet. I think this is in part because I have very oily skin. That presents another problem — I still have breakouts regularly at 35 — but for now, at least the wrinkles are mostly at bay. I’m kind of getting those lines on my forehead, as you can see above. Also, look at that little gray hair sticking out from my part on the right! What a dick.

But the wrinkles won’t stay away forever. My mom looks good for her age, but she has wrinkles, and I know I will, too. I’m also pretty on board with “aging gracefully,” but that doesn’t mean I don’t want to try to take care of my skin.

I always try to wear sunscreen when I’m out. I’ve started using heavier night cream at night, and I use eye cream. I try really hard to always wash my face before bed (but… it doesn’t always happen if I’ve had a few drinks, tbh.)

Speaking of night cream, I rub it all the way down my neck and chest because y’all, I’m getting the wrinkly cleavage, and it ain’t pretty.

Circa summer 2018. Curse you, wrinkly cleavage!

“What about the damn R+F party, though?!”– you might be asking. Here’s the thing. It was relatively uneventful, in that I was not suckered into buying anything, and the hostess was very sweet and even gave me a free makeup sample to take home and try out (she is one of my best friend’s childhood friends, after all).

The makeup line appealed to me because instead of a whole slew of foundation, blush, powder, concealer, etc., it was just one thin liquid-like product. If that actually worked for me, that would be amazing. Almost daily, I pile on all of the above, so to just have one product do the work of all of those products, even at a decent cost — it might be worth it.

As it is, sometimes I just don’t wear makeup to work to give my skin a break, to let it breathe. But I look awful. I have blemishes on the regular, after all.

But alas, the free sample did not quite do the trick. If I had a blemish or two to cover up, it just didn’t do it. And if I used the liquid base plus the cover up for the problem areas, well then I have to dust with powder to blend it all in — kind of defeating the purpose.

So I’m going to pass on the R+F for now, but if it sounds appealing to you, I will totally pass you along to this very nice gal trying to get her line off the ground. That wasn’t even the point of this post at all, but I’d be happy to do it. I didn’t even get into the skin care lines — they have 4 different varieties based on your skin type and needs, and my friend purchased one of those. I’ll bet I’d enjoy that, too, but I simply can’t afford it at this time.

If you’re actually interested, check out the website at https://www.rodanandfields.com.

JFC it is like I’m pitching this stuff, but I swear I’m not!

Also of note from the party:

• I was starving, having skipped dinner, and was trying hard not to go to town on the snack table. Wine, too.

“Slip slowly, Alyssa, these are civilized ladies with houses and kids and they probably don’t imbibe the way you do, have some water…”– my inner monologue.

• I was warned/teased by my friend upon arriving that there was a very hump-friendly dog in the house. I’m a fan of doggies, and this one was shut upstairs, so I wasn’t too worried, but I automatically pictured like a great dane or something in my mind, I’m not sure why.

The actual dog did make an appearance at one point, and it was TINY. This just cracked my shit up, based on the giant, big-balled dog I was picturing, and this little guy was shooed out before he got to hump anyone. Better luck next time, buddy.

• As previously mentioned, nearly all the ladies were married, with houses and kids, so the conversation was largely flowing around these topics as people arrived. I was able to weigh in on work/management-type stuff, but at one point, there was an impassioned, long (to me) tangent about door trim. I never knew it could be such a fascinating topic of discussion! (It wasn’t to me, but good for literally everyone else. OK, not really my friend either, even though she owns a beautiful home.)

It’s times like these, I’m reminded that I’m an adult… but like, not totally. Not like “I had to tell my kids about the birds and bees!” and “You should do THAT with that door, that would look great!” — not that type of adult.

Also not the type with a budget to drop on R+F, not today anyway.

Wrinkles — make like my bank balance and lay low, bitches.

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Social media madness

As another year gets underway, I always take a second to think about my use of social media.

Or I strive to think about it. Or something.

Probably like many of you, I was one of the “first generation” users of Facebook, back when you had to have a college email to log in and it was just a picture and some basic stats. Those were the days, huh?

We all know what it’s become now. A barrage of political articles and opinions, memes, photos, hot takes on sports, etc.

It’s kind of a fucking mess, isn’t it? It’s not even useful as a stalking tool anymore, what with various privacy settings — if you’re smart — and the fact that most of the people you might think about stalking hardly post anything new ever anyway, or so I’m told.

Speaking of stalking, who knew Baby Boomers were such Level: Expert! at that shit?! That’s really what Facebook — and Instagram — has become for me. A place where my parents, aunts, uncles and randos can keep tabs on what I’m doing.

I mean, really…. I can’t be the only one who has relatives that never post on Instagram — EVER — yet they have viewed every.single.one. of my Instagram stories. What’s up with that?!

I see you Aunt Shirley!

What they WILL post on Facebook though, without fail, are those “threats” that thankfully we ALL collectively ignore so no one is singled out. You know what I’m talking about:

“This is a TEST to see who my REAL friends are. I bet most of you will scroll past this, but my REAL friends will comment!”

Me, as I scroll on past.

Also the warnings that they’ve been hacked — aka, fallen victim to another scam. Also the “Like and share this if you agree!” And let’s not forget the ones who dig up old actual family photos, take photos of them and post them and tag you.

Maybe that’s only something I’ve had to deal with….

No, No, and NO THANK YOU!

Lest you think I’m picking on a certain generation, this is from my news feed this morning:

Just sayin.

I guess what I’m getting at is that it seems our parents’ generation has basically taken over Facebook. I don’t think anyone younger than their mid-20s even touches that platform.

Which leads us to explore other avenues of expression… like Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat.

As I’ve already alluded to though, Instagram isn’t such a safe space anymore either, what with the Instagram story stalking. It’s also just not what it used to be since Instagram stories have taken over, and people now feel the need to post novel-esque notes when they want to get a point across.

Where it’s at these days, if you ask me, is Twitter and Snapchat.

I’m always behind my peers when it comes to joining some of the newer, “hip” platforms, with the exception of being on Facebook early on. I just joined Snapchat last year, and I joined Twitter long after live tweeting was a thing… but that doesn’t stop me from doing it.

There’s probably a platform right now I’m not even aware of that’s the new thing… and I won’t even register it until like two years from now.

It’s already out of control as it is! I swore I would never join Snapchat… but then one day I just gave in. The temptation to turn myself into a cute dog or a rabbit was just too strong.

Why, tho?!

I do really like that everything disappears in a day, though! Or sooner if I get on after a night out drinking and realize no one wants to see me “dancing” and singing off key to Ariana Grande.

You, reading this blog, probably.

What’s REALLY annoying (and by that I mean, ME) though is that my boyfriend is not on Snapchat, but I save any snap I want him to see and just text it to him directly. I mean, if he thinks I’m cute NOW, wait until he sees me as a rabbit with a squeaky voice!

I’m not sure why we’re still together.

Twitter is honestly probably my fav. So much so that I have TWO accounts. One for more professional purposes (boring af) that’s linked to my job, and the other for this blog.

Obviously, despite some of my reservations, I’m clearly not anti-social media. I think it has toxic qualities for sure, but I’m not one to shun it or get up on too high of a horse.

I mean…..

Also taken from my Facebook feed today.

Just sayin. Ya know, you do you, live and let live and all that! I’ve been on the receiving end of judgment and drama regarding social media posts. I’d like to think it’s made me more conscious of what and when I’m choosing to post and share… but it really just depends on what mood I’m in.

This is a mood.

So yeah, follow me on all the platforms. Or block me. I don’t care*! Happy Friday, y’all!

*I really do care a lot, you guys.

50 Books in 2018 Part 2: A Missed Deadline

I rarely miss a deadline. It’s my job as an editor to meet deadlines every single week! I am reliable!

Last year, I set a goal to read 50 books in 2018. I did a brief update in July on my progress, and at that time I was definitely behind since I was supposed to be reading about 4-5 books a month to stay on track, but I’d only reached #22 (https://alyssagoesadulting.com/2018/07/30/50-books-in-2018-part-1/).

However, as the year wore on, I really picked up the pace. I was averaging 1-2 books a week, constantly visiting the library. By the week of Christmas, I had up to book #45 in my possession, and I sought out recommendations for short stories to try to cram in 5 more.

Life happened, though. Luke and I went out of town last weekend, I had New Year’s Eve plans, and Jan. 1 came before I could crack open another book.

So… I set a goal of 50, and I made it to 45. OK!

At first, I was disappointed. Again, I rarely miss a deadline, but mid-year I definitely slacked in my reading speed, and one particular book took me weeks because I wasn’t loving it. But I belong to this group on Facebook where people make book recommendations, and on New Year’s Eve, everyone was sharing their reading goals from 2018. It went something like this:

Person 1: I set a goal of 50 for the year, and I read 52!

Person 2: I set a goal of 60 for the year, and I read 70!

Person 3: I set a goal of 100 for the year and read 300!

I swear, it was something like that. Something CRAZY where that person must just read books in between meals and sleeping or maybe listens to books on tape while sleeping? I have no idea. Good for you.

These people also were breaking down their favorite books, breaking out how many were by women, women of color, etc.

These people be like….

Yeah… I’m not going to do that. In part 1 of this post, I talked a bit about some highlights and I’ll do that again here, but there will be no “demographics,” so to speak. Nah.

But first, a little confession from my school daze, just for fun.

Do you remember those mailers we got in school with books that you could order, and you’d take them home to your parents and convince them to order you a bunch of books?

We had a bit of a battle in my house growing up. I’ve always loved to read books. Always. At some point in my youth, I became drawn to young adult (YA) fiction. You know, like you do. My parents were not having it, though.

My dad would spot a Sweet Valley Kids/Twins/High book in the bathroom.

“What is this TRASH?!”

I started reading Goosebumps when those become popular.

Mom: “You need to fill your head with more quality reading material!”

It got to the point where I felt I had to hide a lot of my reading material from them. I mean, how ridiculous is that?! I wasn’t reading Playboy, for goodness sake! We weren’t an overtly religious household. We didn’t have a library wing stacked with the classics. I don’t know why this was the hill they chose to die on in my youth, but… they sure did.

Actual photo of my mom upon finding a YA novel in our house.

So back to the mailer. After a few attempts to order the books I wanted to read, and my mom saying no, I started implementing a pretty brilliant strategy. I’d read the synopses for the books to order, choose 4-5 of the ones that sounded dreadfully boring, and then tack on one I actually wanted to read. I’d present the list to my mom with a pitch along the lines of, “Yes, I want to read all these great, historical educational books, but like, let’s throw in that one Goosebumps book JUST FOR FUN?”

Her: “OK, dear, sounds good.”

Me:

It was such a waste. I don’t know how many books we ordered that I never even cracked open. It’s not like they quizzed me or anything! I wonder how many are still at our house that I might actually like to read now? Ridiculous!

So, yeah, that was something.

As an adult, I think I mix it up pretty well. I LOVE crime/murder mysteries and suspenseful reads, but I’ve also read some really great memoirs this year and other thought-provoking novels. Maybe I’ll talk to my parents about this when I go home in a few weeks so they can see that Sweet Valley didn’t ruin me for good.

So, some of my favs from 2018, not mentioned in my previous post:

  1. Vox

This book was creepy in the way that the Handmaid’s Tale is creepy. It’s another world where women are less than, and in this one, women are only allotted 100 words a day or they receive an electric shock. Sinister.

2. Dietland

My friend Katie lent this to me when she visited in October, and it was extremely thought-provoking if you’ve ever struggled with your weight.

3. A Spark of Light

Jodi Picoult does it again. Author of “Small, Great Things,” another fav from 2018 (and it’s being made into a movie!), in this one she tackles the abortion debate, but with a unique literary style and from several different viewpoints.

4. This Will Only Hurt a Little

Busy Phillips memoir. OMG. So honest!

I feel like I’m jumping on the bandwagon with these next 2, but like literally everyone else, I thought “An American Marriage” and “Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine” were both pretty exceptional.

I did NOT go crazy over Bird Box, though. The book or the film. And I’m sure you’re sick of hearing about it!

I really enjoyed this goal, so I’m doing it again in 2019! I’m setting it at 50 again, so we’ll see if I make the deadline or if I get to be one of those people that’s like, “I set it at 50, I made it to 100! NO BIG DEAL!”

Happy New Year!

It’s going to get better soon… right?

It’s been somewhat of a struggle to get into the spirit of the holidays this year.

I’ve found that in my adult years, really ever since high school, that happens off and on. Some years are more special than others. Some holiday seasons are snow-covered, dreamy weeks filled with Christmas music, lights, cheer and love-fueled gift giving…. while others are fraught with bills, stress, loss and the winter blues.

Thus far, this season has been shaping up to be the latter.

Despite my half-assed attempt to create a budget in 2018, it pretty much blew up by mid-year. I’m still living paycheck to paycheck, just making ends meet, enjoying life enough but with no real savings or future financial plans to speak of.

A lot of days, I look around me and it’s like… why bother? The political and economic climate is pretty dismal. I figure getting by day by day is good enough, and maybe it’s best to be renting, in a domestic partnership, with no real attachment holding me anywhere. If the shit really hits the fan, I am free to go.

Where? I don’t know, but … I am?

Can we say….

Debbie Downer

Ha. Seriously, though. In the past month-and-a-half, our household was hit with:

  • Unexpected medical expenses
  • Less than ideal health-related family news
  • Car trouble
  • More car trouble
  • More car trouble
  • The Wisconsin Republican legislature of turds (OK, that’s not exactly personal, but it doesn’t help)
  • Miscellaneous drama

And you want me to “rock around the Christmas tree”? I don’t even want to put up a Christmas tree to rock around. It sounds like too much work, and I’m already anticipating the pain of taking it down in a few weeks.


At least this fucker was rich.

I was feeling really down as November came to a close. When you’re not feeling the spirit of the holidays, the constant barrage of commercials, jingles, lights and Christmas specials almost feels like a personal assault at times. It goes on whether you’re feeling it or not.

But this past weekend, I had a slight change of heart. And it wasn’t because the Who’s of Whoville kept singing that damn song with nonsense lyrics (OK, for real, I love it, but what the hell are they saying in the beginning?!) and my heart grew three sizes or some shit, but rather by realizing a simple fact:

Life is always in flux, so if things kind of suck right now…. well, it’s about to turn around!

Right?…. RIGHT?!

I found comfort in this. Sometimes, when we can’t pull ourselves out of a rut, I think the best thing we can do is just wait. Just get by and wait it out. Do what you can, and what you can’t, you can’t.

Armed with this nugget of solace, I found it in me to put on some Christmas music and decorate the apartment on Saturday. Lowkey decorating anyway — still no big tree — but once it was done, I found that I was grateful for the lights and a bit of cheer about my home. Luke agreed. He kept saying “I was really dragging my heels, but it looks nice in here.”

We also had some festive time with friends and my company holiday dinner, so I was feeling pretty grateful for the people in my life and all that I do have.

Don’t get me wrong, either. Could it be worse? Absolutely. Are there others far less fortunate? Totally. Do I still manage to keep that in mind and give where I can? You betcha. But that doesn’t mean some of us in the middle don’t feel those blues and struggle from time to time.

But I’ll wait this one out. Tom Petty always said, the waiting is the hardest part.

Happy holidays to you and yours!

FOOLPROOF advice to get a man- Part 2

Alright, buckle up, because we’re going to finish out this list of advice in style! In case you missed Part 1, check it out here.

I got a little crazy with the memes on this one, but what can I say that a meme can’t say better?

Section 3: HOW TO LOOK GOOD TO HIM

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Well thanks, Cheryl, shouldn’t you have gone through this with me first before I started setting up my easel outside his classroom?! No wonder he called school security.

Anyway….

48. Men like to think they’re authorities on perfume. Ask his advice on what kind you should wear.

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49. Get better-looking glasses — men still make passes at girls who wear glasses — or try contact lenses.

“Men still make passes at girls who wear glasses”?! A mantra for the ages!

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50. Practice drinking with your women friends first.

CHECK!

51. If you dye your hair, pick a shade and stick to it.

Remember, none of this “guess who?” stuff!

52. Wear high heels most of the time — they’re sexier.

Sure, until you break your ankle because you’re flat-footed and clumsy af.

53. Unless he happens to be shorter than you are!

Then you’d better bind up those feet.

54. Tell him he’s handsome.

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Done.

55. Take good care of your health. Men don’t like girls who are ill.

Yet…. yet, we want to meet widowers, don’t we?! Make up your mind, McCall’s!

56. If you look good in sweaters, wear one on every third date.

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57. Dress differently from the other girls in the office.

Somehow I think my squeaking into the office in stretchy pants, glasses and sports T’s on Fridays isn’t what they have in mind.

58. Get a sunburn.

Make. Up. Your. Mind! If he doesn’t like ill girls, what’s he going to do when you get melanoma?

59. Watch your vocabulary.

Covfefe!

60. Go on a diet if you need to.

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61. When you are with him, order your steak rare.

Shouldn’t I be getting a salad?!

62. Don’t tell him about your allergies.

No. It’s much better for it to be a SURPRISE.

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63. European women use their eyes to good advantage. Practice in front of a mirror.

Smize. It. Up!

64. Buy a full-length mirror and take a good look before you go to greet him.

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65. Change the shade of your stockings and be sure to keep the seams straight!

I have no idea.

66. Get that fresh-scrubbed look by scrubbing!

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67. If he has bought you any trinket or accessory, wear it.

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68. Use the ashtray; don’t crush out cigarettes in coffee cups!

The horror!

69. Polish up on making introductions; learn to do them gracefully.

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70. Don’t be too fussy.

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71. Stick to your moral standards.

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72. Don’t whine — girls who whine stay on the vine!

Is it by chance this vine?

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Alright, DRUMROLL…. You’ve almost got him!

Section 4: HOW TO LAND HIM

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73. Show him you can have fun on a cheap date — but don’t overdo it!

I have so many questions. Overdo the cheapness, the fun, the date itself?

74. Don’t let your parents treat him like a potential husband.

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75. Ask your parents to disappear when you’re entertaining!

Now…. wouldn’t that be the entertainment? A magic show!

76. Double-date with a gay, happily married couple — let him see what it’s like!

There’s absolutely no way this could backfire.

77. Tell his friends nice things about him.

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78. Send his mother a birthday card.

If you’ve never met her, this won’t be creepy at all.

79. Ask his mother for her recipes.

So you can fuck them up.

80. Talk to his father about business and agree that taxes are too high!

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81. Buy his sister’s children an occasional present.

Yes, get the children to whine to him about missing Auntie Alyssa!

82. On the first date, tell him you aren’t thinking of getting married!

You know, I tried that, since I met Luke as I was getting divorced, and it really seems to have backfired. 5 years later…

83. Don’t talk about how many children you want.

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84. If he’s a fisherman, learn to scale and clean fish.

Pass.

85. Don’t tell him everything about yourself at the start. Hold something in reserve.

Oops.

86. When you’re out strolling with him, don’t insist on stopping at every shopwindow.

I thought men loved shopping?

87. Don’t tell him how much your clothes cost.

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88. Learn to sew and wear something you have made yourself.

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89. Don’t gossip about him.

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90. Never let him know he’s the only one, even if you have to stay home one or two nights a week!

Ed gets it.

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91. Don’t be a pushover when he’s trying to make a date.

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92. Very early in your dating, why not get a favorite song that you both regard as your own?

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93. Find out about the girls he hasn’t married. Don’t repeat the mistakes they made.

Also, don’t go crazy in the process, which I’m sure you won’t.

94. Don’t discuss your former boyfriends.

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95. If you are widowed or divorced, don’t constantly discuss your former husband.

Re: the first couple months…. oops.

96. Be flexible. If he decides to skip the dance and go rowing in the lake, go — even if you are wearing your best evening gown.

Sure, no problem! And doesn’t this directly conflict with #91??

97. Hide your Phi Betta Kappa key if you own one — later on junior can play with it.

In the name of all that is holy, what the hell are we even TALKING about?!

98. Turn wolves into husband material by assuming they have honor.

I’m not a magician or a witch, Sally.

99. Resist the urge to make him over — before marriage, that is!

OK, you’re straight up contradicting yourself, McCall’s.

100. Learn where to draw the line — but do it gracefully.

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101. Remain innocent but not ignorant.

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102. Make your home comfortable when he calls — large ashtrays, comfortable chairs.

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103. Learn to play poker.

Practice your poker face.

104. If he’s rich, tell him you like his money — the honestly will intrigue him!

And you’ll be signing a prenup.

105. Never let him believe your career is more important to you than marriage.

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106. Buy him an amusing or particularly appropriate present every once in awhile. But don’t make it too expensive.

Heh.

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107. Clip and mail him a funny cartoon that means something to both of you.

Yeah, obviously, text him a meme. It’s 2018.

108. Don’t tell dirty stories.

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109. Stop being a mama’s girl — don’t let him think he’ll have in-law trouble, even if you know he will!

Sounds perfectly up front.

110. Point out to him that the death rate of single men is twice that of married men.

Facts be damned!

BONUS ROUND- Section 5: WILD IDEAS — ANYTHING GOES

Yes, for real, this is still part of the McCall’s article, in case you had doubts.

Remember at the beginning of this Part 2 post where I said to buckle up? Well now the frilly sight-seeing part of the tour is over and we’re going on a ride, so BUCKLE UP NOW, and probably request one of those roller coaster protector things for your shoulders because we’re gonna go upside down a few times.

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111. Go to Yale.

Just do it! Remember what Reese Witherspoon said about getting into Harvard law school in “Legally Blonde?”

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112. Get a hunting license.

If you can’t snag him, shoot him!

113. If your mother is fat, tell him you take after your father. If he’s fat too, tell him you’re adopted!

All the best marriages are built on a throne of lies!

114. Stow away on a battleship.

Why not? It’s Tuesday!

115. Rent a billboard and post your picture and telephone number on it.

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116. Paint your name and number on roof and say, “Give me a buzz, pilots.”

If the billboard thing doesn’t work out, of course.

117. Start a whispering campaign on how sought-after you are.

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118. Sink at a fashionable beach at high noon!

As in… drown?

119. Ride the airport bus back and forth from the airport.

What fresh hell activity is this?!

120. Bribe Ferris-wheel operator to get you stuck on the top of a Ferris wheel.

Told you we’d go upside down….

121. Stand on a busy street corner with a lasso.

No one will mistake you for a prostitute.

122. Carry a camera and ask strange, handsome men if they would mind snapping your picture. 

Make sure they’re strange because you want your photo to end up in that cold case file, don’t you?

123. Ask your mother to take in male boarders.

I just physically shuddered.

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124. Make and sell toupees — bald men are easy catches!

I’d rather die alone. Not than date a bald man but… making toupees?! See above gif.

125. Advertise for male co-owner of a boat.

Now THERE’S a good idea in all of this bat-shit craziness!

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126. If you see a man with a flat, offer to fix it.

You’ve got plenty of experience from your regularly scheduled car break downs.

127. Carry a tow chain in the trunk of your automobile.

Are we still on a list about snagging a husband?!

128. Let it be known in your office that you have a button box and will sew on bachelors’ loose buttons.

It is decreed!

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And last but not least. Ladies, for the love of god, above all else ….

129. Don’t marry him if he has too many loose buttons!

So, there you have it! Happy hunting. May you live happily ever after, in Nevada, selling fishing tackle out of your convertible, living under a mountain of lies. True love!

FOOLPROOF advice to get a man- Part 1

Since it’s the Monday after Thanksgiving weekend, naturally I am just above useless at work today. I literally dragged myself out of bed, skipped the shower and I’m wearing my glasses.

I have managed to clear my email inbox and accomplish about 3 simple tasks, so obviously I have spent most of the day browsing online. Not for cyber Monday or anything like that — I have no money — but just going down a delightful rabbit hole of sorts on the joy that is Betches.com.

Which is how I have stumbled upon this GEM. Apparently it’s been making the rounds online, but Adultish Alyssa is going to break it down for you — just in time for the magical, romantic holiday season — because why would I spend my last hour here doing something productive? That’s what Tuesdays are for.

What we have here, ladies (and gentlemen maybe), is some solid, timeless, spot on advice about how to land yourself a husband. ONE HUNDRED TWENTY NINE ways, to be exact.

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Let’s dig in, shall we?

Oh, real quick side note — this is from an issue of McCall’s magazine published in 1958. But trust me, it’s TIMELESS.

Section 1: WHERE TO FIND HIM

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  1. Get a dog and walk it.

YES. I’ve always dreamed of falling in love at the dog park when his and my dog’s poo gets mixed up. This is the stuff of true romance. Also, men hate cats (FACT).

2. Have your car break down at strategic places.

Mind=BLOWN. I had no idea I could schedule my car to break down! How neat.

3. Attend night school — take courses men like.

You know, like the reverse of this article I’m sure. There must be an equivalent course for men? Better yet, schedule your car to break down outside the night school!

4. Join a hiking club.

Honestly, I got nothin. But it sounds like a recent episode I caught of Dateline, so maybe not.

5. Look in the census reports for places with the most single men. Nevada has 125 males for every 100 females.

Ladies — forget your friends, family, career. You need to move where the MEN are, or your life has no meaning!

6. Read the obituaries to find eligible widowers.

ABSOLUTE GENIUS. You can procure yourself a SUGAR DADDY since he’s probably 70-plus!

7. Take up golf and go to different golf courses.

Can we say, cute golf clothes?! YES!

8. Take several short vacations at different places rather than one long one at one place.

This ties in nicely with #5 — you can scope out where you’re going to uproot your life and move to.

9. Sit on a park bench and feed the pigeons.

You won’t look sad, I swear. Nothing hooks a man like a woman who has a way with winged rats.

10. Take a bicycle trip through Europe.

Who’s funding this LIST, Martha?! Furthermore, do you bike on the wrong side of the street there, too, or is that just driving?

11. Get a job in a medical, dental or law school.

This isn’t sexist at all….

12. Become a nurse or airline stewardess — they have very high marriage rates.

Well, I do say! Let’s all join the mile high club!

13. Ask your friends’ husbands who the eligible men are in their offices.

You know, I tried that, and it just really didn’t work out between me and the janitor. Sigh.

14. Be nice to everybody — they may have an eligible brother or son.

And if not? SCREW ‘EM.

15. Get a government job overseas.

I’m sensing a worldly type of theme here, no? And you know, getting a government job, particularly overseas, is SUPER EASY.

16. Volunteer for jury duty.

You might meet your sweetheart — the murderer!

17. Be friendly to ugly men — handsome is as handsome does.

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18. Tell your friends that you are interested in getting married. Don’t keep it a secret.

Men LOVE desperate women.

19. Get lost at football games.

If I’m at a football game, I’m watching it. Fuck that.

20. Don’t take a job in a company run largely by women.

Oops.

21. Get a job demonstrating fishing tackle in a sporting goods store.

Oddly specific.

22. On a plane, train or bus don’t sit next to a woman — sit next to a man.

Throw all your caution out the window! We’re now perfectly fine seeking men out in strange public places and scheduling car breakdowns — at night school!

23. Go to all reunions of your high school or college class. There may be widowers there.

Reaaaaally focused on the widower thing, huh McCall’s? It’s not creepy at all.

24. Don’t be afraid to associate with more attractive girls; they may have some leftovers.

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25. Go back to your home town for a visit — the wild kid next door may have become a very eligible bachelor while you were away.

That lives with his mom. Cool.

26. Don’t room with a girl that is a sad sack and let her pull you down to her level.

… and no one roomed with Alyssa ever again.

27. Get a part-time job in a convention bureau.

Huh?

28. Change apartments from time to time.

Your next hunky landlord is just round the corner!

29. When traveling, stay at small hotels where it is easier to meet strangers.

Remember, all caution out the window! Better to be strangled than single!

30. Learn to paint. Set up easel outside engineering school.

You’ll seem perfectly normal and security won’t be called.

Section 2: HOW TO LET HIM KNOW YOU’RE THERE

You know, if the easel outside his school, breaking down in front of his house every day at 5 and showing him how to use fishing tackle do not work, of course.

31. Stumble when you walk into a room he’s in.

Bonus if it’s onto the fainting couch. How dainty!

32. Forget discretion every once in awhile and call him up.

Every night. At 2 a.m., drunk!

33. Carry a hatbox.

I do believe this would work today. Why on earth would someone be carrying such an item? Intriguing!

34. Wear a Band-Aid. People always ask what happened.

I’m just trying to cover up my psoriasis.

35. Make a lot of money.

Scheduling car breakdowns, international travel, becoming a millionaire! This list is making me realize my full life’s instant potential.

36. Learn several funny stories and learn to tell them well — but make sure you don’t tell them to him more than once.

Men — this one’s for you. Take heed.

37. Walk up to him and tell him you need some advice.

About fishing tackle.

38. Dropping the handkerchief still works.

Totally stealing this from Betches but…..

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39. Have your father buy some theater tickets that have to be got rid of.

My dad was perplexed when I called and asked him to buy tickets for me, but perhaps you’ll have better luck.

40. Stand in a corner and cry softly. Chances are good* that he’ll come over to find out what’s wrong.

*ABSOLUTELY ZERO

41. Don’t let him fish for your name the next time you meet. None of this “guess who” stuff.

READ THE NECKLACE.

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42. If you’re at a resort, have the bell-boy page you.

I guess we’re getting desperate.

43. Buy a convertible. Men like to ride in them.

Schedule it to break down.

44. Learn how to bake tasty apple pies. Bring one in to the office and let the eligible bachelors taste it.

Everyone else in the office can go to hell, right?

45. Laugh at his jokes.

Even if they’re offensive or not funny!

46. If there’s a wallflower among the men you know, why not cultivate him? For all you know, he may be a diamond in the rough.

Certainly not someone addicted to video games, no no, of course not!

47. “Accidentally” have your purse fly open, scattering its contents all over the street.

Tampons, crazy pills and condoms be damned!

Alright y’all, I’ve successfully pissed away the hour, so we’ll have to continue with this tomorrow. I’ll bet you can’t wait!

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5 years (Part 1 of 2)

**Disclaimer: The spacing on this is screwed up and I can’t seem to get it right. Once again, Technology-1, Alyssa-0**

Hello friends.

This is kind of a big day for me. I don’t know what it is about “5 years,” but it seems significant. A lot can happen in that time. It’s half a decade.

Nine years ago today, I got married. My ex and I would be celebrating almost a decade of marriage together today but….

On what would have been my fourth wedding anniversary 5 years ago, he and I were huddled around his laptop, trying to navigate a website about filing for divorce in Wisconsin. I remember half sitting on the arm of the couch, not wanting to be that close.

The next day, we went downtown to file and pay the fee (yup, it’s not free!), and then he left on a plane to California. A new chapter in each of our lives was beginning as we began the 6-month waiting period until our divorce was finalized.

That day before, an “anniversary” spent discussing the logistics of splitting up the remnants of our seven years together, I remember I had put on my vinyl of Bon Iver’s “For Emma, Forever Ago.” A rather melancholy tune was playing:

My mile could not
Pump the plumb
In my arbor ’till my ardor
Trumped every inner inertia
Lump sum
All at once
Rushing from the sub-pump
(Or so the story goes)
Balance we won’t know
We will see when it gets warm
I remember looking at the song title and thinking, “Huh, ‘Lump Sum.’ How appropriate for a divorce.”

You really have to listen to it to get the full effect. I’m actually listening to the album right now, and it’s raining. Too perfect. Melancholy as it is, it brings me an odd sense of comfort. I remember putting it on approximately a year after that day, when I was in my own apartment, the first apartment I lived in by myself.

Screen shot from my Insta, circa Fall 2014
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It’s true. A year later, life was good. But I was still figuring out a lot. I still am.

Once I knew it was over with my ex, I remember reaching out to a friend who recently had gone through a divorce. I remember her clearly telling me that the next year of my life would be the hardest. She suggested taking down all of my social media accounts, since people would start to figure things out and have questions; I’d be changing my name, I’d be deleting tons of photos, etc.

She was right. Although I didn’t take my accounts offline, all of those things were true. Even now, my efforts to delete nearly every trace of my former relationship on social media doesn’t stop things from popping up in Timehop and Facebook memories. Tons of friends and family have documentation from my wedding day, even if I’ve managed to wipe my own account fairly clean.

It’s OK. It’s not exactly like I’m trying to erase my past. Most of the time, on days like today, it just shows me how far I’ve come.

Over these past 5 years, especially in the first couple, I just didn’t understand how I’d gotten it SO wrong. I do take marriage seriously. I took my vows seriously; I wrote them myself. How did I screw it all up? Not the marriage itself — that takes two — but my choice of life partner.

And that’s not meant as an offense to him. It’s just that he doesn’t possess a lot of qualities or interests that I learned were really important to me. It scares me. It makes me feel like we don’t know who the fuck we really are in our 20s, and tons of people get married in their 20s. Some of them are just fine, but I know there are others like me, who wake up one day and are like, THIS PERSON? How did this happen?!

We just didn’t grow together. It happens. I honestly feel like the end of the marriage in a lot of ways is more on me than him. Yes, he left, he “ended” it. But from the time we met, and especially when we moved to Wisconsin, I really set off in another direction with my wants and needs. I also think he had all of these ideals about some path we were supposed to be on, and I wasn’t fitting into that, as I was figuring myself out. I just don’t think he realized how unhappy he was, in general, and I think he sees it now. He seems much happier now, and I’m glad.

Honestly, though, I feel like getting divorced resulted in an evolvement from a former version of myself. Starting over at 30 isn’t exactly ideal, but it’s a lot better than a host of alternatives. Now at 35, I’m very confident about who I am and what I want. I’m still going to make mistakes, but I don’t think I’m going to make them in love.

In general, I’ve still got a long way to go in figuring things out. Things like:
– Saving money (LOL, what?!)
– Budgeting (more specifically, actually sticking to the budget)
– Dealing with hurt feelings
– Handling stress in healthier ways
– Riding a bike without freaking out (still!)
But I do think I’ve figured out love, for myself. Romantic love, anyway; I’m still figuring out how to love myself.

The thing about romantic love is, you’re only half of the whole. It’s more than just feelings. It’s making a choice every day. It’s a partnership.

More on that in Part 2.
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