Moxie’s Resolutions for Everyone Else: The 2018 Edition

It just seems like yesterday that I was writing the 2017 resolutions for everyone else. Where does the time go? Let’s get right to it for 2018.

1. Use blind cc (bcc: field) on group emails (everyone).

I feel like I shouldn’t have to bring this up, considering it’s been over 40 years since email was invented and around 20 years since we all had Outlook inboxes at work. But I’m still seeing people send group emails with every last email address in the To: field, which means people in that original mailing can Reply All, thereby making life a living hell until someone has the cojones to say “perhaps you should take this conversation offline.” Not sure where to find the bcc: field in your email provider? Look it up!

2. Place UPCs on top of cat litter boxes for easier shopping (cat litter manufacturers).

3. Create short-term incentive program for residents & businesses to recycle (City of Baltimore).

You’d think for a city that is notorious for its trash and littering problems they would be all about recycling and pushing hard to encourage people to use its recycling program. But I see TONS of garbage on the streets that’s recyclable. My building doesn’t even have a recycle bin – I have to collect my own and take it over to the recycling center about once every 6 weeks. I’ve talked to my community liaison from the Dept of Public Works about the possibility of an incentive program to get people recycling more – perhaps a tax credit or rebate. Money is a powerful motivator for some folks and it may be they’d be more willing to recycle if they knew there would be a pay-off later.

4. Stop trolling for women on Instagram (men).

5. Stop posting/sharing content with high ick factor (social media users).

You’ve seen these kind of posts: someone has shared content from another source prefaced by “EWWW” or “NOPE” and the shared content features something extremely disgusting or nightmare-inducing. For the love of Steve, why are you sharing what grossed you out? Do you want everyone else to suffer? Keep your sadomasochism off Facebook.

6. Create mobile device free zones/events AND/OR mobile device-friendly zones/events (theatres, concert halls, other performance venues).

I’ve seen many stories about performers stopping a show because someone decided their need to take a photo of the show or film the entire thing on their iPhone 20 trumped everyone else’s enjoyment of the show or film. I’ve also been the person asking adults to turn off their phones during a movie. (Three freakin’ times during Wonder Woman! I’m still annoyed when I think about it.) Since we all seem to be struggling to define proper cell phone etiquette, how about these venues take it upon themselves to designate special performances where mobile devices are not allowed? Conversely, how about events where mobile device use is encouraged?

7. Stop saying “I don’t see color/race/gender/disability” (everyone).

I know that many folks say this as a way to express their alliance and acceptance of diversity, but it comes off as disingenuous. Why? Because it’s okay to see these things; it’s quite another to take what you see and turn it into a reason to treat someone differently, whether it’s better or worse than you would want to be treated.

8. Design small apartments/condos with bathroom access from hallway or common area, not bedroom (developers).

I’ve been looking at apartments lately (hoping to move this summer, though we’ll see if it actually happens) and it seems many one-bedroom, one-bathroom units, regardless of the age of the property, are designed so that you have to walk through the bedroom to reach the bathroom. If I was a complete recluse who never had people over, I wouldn’t mind this. But on those occasions when people are visiting I would prefer NOT to have them traipsing through my bedroom to get to the bathroom. Even a Jack-and-Jill style bathroom like the Brady kids had – THREE doors! – would be better.

jack-and-jill bathroom, jack and jill bathroom, brady bunch

Sure, that Jack-and-Jill bathroom was too small for 6 kids, and Mike Brady could have designed something better, but it made for good television.

9. Add routes from Baltimore and Washington DC to Ocean City, MD (MegaBus).

I’m surprised MegaBus hasn’t added this route already, as Ocean City is a huge destination for folks in the DC and Baltimore area in the summer months. I’d like it for those times I want to go see Deena but don’t want to deal with driving out there. Of course, it would likely turn into a party bus, but that can happen anywhere.

10. Include expiration dates on lotions containing essential oils (cottage-industry/small-batch natural beauty product manufacturers).

Moxie’s Resolutions for Everyone Else: The 2017 Edition

What a crazy clusterf**k of a year it’s been. I’m ready for 2017, but there are a few things I’d like y’all to do better, okay? Hence my annual resolutions for everyone else. On with the show.

Stop using “Ch-Ch-Changes” as an editorial or article title (editors and journalists). If I had a dollar for every time I’ve seen this popular David Bowie song used as a title for an op-ed, editor’s note or even an article, I would not need a day job. Now that Bowie is no longer with us, how about honoring his memory by NOT using this song as an article title anymore?

Participate in the 2018 California State Fair by having an exhibit in the exhibition hall (California counties). 

Create a buddy movie or sitcom starring Gwendoline Christie and Miranda Hart (British film/TV industry). If you’ve watched “Game of Thrones”, you’ve likely seen actress Gwendoline Christie as Brienne of Tarth, the tall, powerful female knight who has sworn to serve the House of Stark. She’s fabulous.

Gwendoline Christie as Brienne of Tarth on

Gwendoline Christie as Brienne of Tarth on “Game of Thrones.” Strong, powerful, flawed character and one of the reasons I keep watching.

 

Gwendoline Christie, actress, British actress, Brienne of Tarth, Game of Thrones

Gwendoline Christie all dolled up for awards show.

Just as fabulous is the statuesque actress and comedian Miranda Hart, who had her own sitcom on BBC and has been in several films, as well as on PBS’s series “Call the Midwife” as Chummy.

Miranda Hart, British actress, British comedian

Miranda Hart, British actress and comedian.

Why not put these two tall, lovely British ladies in a buddy movie or sitcom? Rumor is that “Miranda” is returning – how about a guest spot for Gwendoline, hmm, Miranda? Maybe Miranda dresses up as Brienne for a fancy dress party and ends up in some wacky situation where she is mistaken for Gwendoline?

Make US Postal Service-compliant stationery and cards (stationers and greeting card makers). 

Declare a moratorium on remakes of movies that are less than 50 years old (Hollywood). I feel like I’ve made this resolution before but once again in my life, I am freakin’ Cassandra yelling at the Trojans to not let that damn horse through the gates. Reading this round-up at Den of Geek got me extra annoyed. I get that there’s an assumption on the part of film producers and major studios that a remake has much better luck at doing well at the box office, but come up with some new material, okay? Or just make another sequel or prequel to an existing property, since you’re doing that already.

Accept that email is not a secure form of communication (federal government, Democratic National Committee, and, really, everyone). If we learned anything in 2016, it’s that email servers can be easily hacked. Honestly, I think there’s a lot of ignorance on the part of politicians and others about email security. Unless you work for the NSA, CIA or FBI, or you’re intentionally using email encryption software or services, assume that none of your emails are safe from prying eyes, and act accordingly.

Create/produce a TV drama about Baltimore that’s positive & uplifting (Josh Charles).

Kill Flash Player already (Adobe). I feel like this has been a resolution in years past and yet this stupid thing continues to exist and slow down everything on my computer. Please, for the love of Steve, just kill Flash already.

Get a smartphone already (Pops). He’s had an iPad for a few years now, and the iPhone is not that much different, yet Pops refuses to get a smartphone. He says “my phone is smart enough to work,” and I appreciate that, but the moments when you are dealing with crappy traffic because your Garmin doesn’t tell you about road closures are moments you can avoid with a smartphone that’s equipped with Google Maps and Waze.

Restore Jerry’s Subs & Pizza to its former glory (DC, MD and VA sub-loving citizens).

What are YOUR resolutions for everyone else?

Moxie’s Resolutions for Everyone Else: 2016 Edition

Regular readers of GWM will be familiar with this tradition: I share 10 resolutions for people, organizations, etc. other than myself. This year, I’ve incorporated some video clips to better illustrate my resolutions.

1. Stop abbreviating words just to be clever (Millennials). I’m blaming them, but it may not be completely their fault that the media is now saturated with obvi, totes, ack…you get the idea. Do you have a problem with letters? No? Then spell the whole damn word!

2. Make adult bibs socially acceptable (American society).

3. Drop the “vanilla diamond” marketing strategy (LeVian). The chocolate diamonds are bad enough, but now this company has begun calling traditional white diamonds “vanilla.” The first time I saw one of their ads with this crap, I started yelling at the screen because it’s complete bullshit. My bestie Deena, who’s worked in the jewelry business for over 20 years, agrees. Not only does the emperor have new clothes, he also has a fabulous new vanilla diamond ring!

These are DIAMONDS. Period.

4. Stop expecting to be validated on social media for all of my opinions (social media users). I’m guilty of this, too, but I gotta say I’m tired of doing this and I’m tired of seeing others do it as well. When we put our opinions out there for all the world to see (or, at the very least, our friends and friends of friends), there is bound to be someone who disagrees. Worst case scenario, no one even notices. In either instance, social media isn’t a megaphone or bullhorn that’s guaranteed to get you interaction, especially of a positive, validating nature. If you understand this, then share on. If not, then maybe it’s time to rethink your communication strategies.

5. Make pencil eraser caps that fit without tearing (office supply manufacturers). 

6. Contract a musician to create new hold music (IRS). Every time I’ve had to call the IRS over the last few years, they have had the same hold music. I’m not making that up; this guy has noticed it, too. Surely the IRS can afford to pay someone to create new music, or perhaps Pandora or Spotify would be cheaper. Either way, this music needs to go.

7. Use headphones with my electronic devices when in public places (everyone). You know this person: they are blasting their music or a video  from their smartphone, tablet or computer so loud that it flashes you back to the ghetto blasters and boom boxes of the 80s. That is a flashback I don’t need, nor does anyone else. Headphones are cheap. Get a pair, get two. Hell, get three. THEN USE THEM.

8. Bring back the clean shaven look (bearded dudes).

I wish I could turn this photo upside down and their beards would disappear, like those old pens with the girls in bikinis. Right side up, he’s got a beard! Upside down, he’s shaved!

So many hipsters…so many beards. I’m tired of it because as Great Grandma A would say, “why did you have to go and disfigure your face?” I can’t see YOU. All I see is scraggly hair covering half your mug. Unless you’ve got a terrible skin condition or you wear a beard for religious reasons, it’s time to shave and show the world your face.

9. Continue developing shows that showcase diversity in casting and subject matter (Hollywood). It’s great to see so much diversity on TV shows, whether it’s from a major network or a streaming service. A few examples include Master of None, Transparent, Orange is the New Black, Fresh off the Boat, Black-ish, and Telenovela. When made by producers, directors and writers who are part of the cultures represented, these shows take the stereotypes and demonstrate if and when they are applicable, but also illustrate the commonalities with the average white American. In the coming year, I hope to see shows featuring people with disabilities, Middle Easterners, Eastern Europeans and folks from former Soviet bloc countries.

10. Choose love (everyone). A couple months ago, I had a dream in which I was in a room full of people. I stood up in front of them and said, “I figured it out! It’s so simple. Choose love.” When I woke up, I was in the best mood all day, because it’s true: we always have a choice in what we are going to say or do. There have been so many instances this past year in which individuals, from political candidates to photographers, police departments to passengers on a train, have made that choice in a public forum. Sometimes that choice shows fear and engenders divisiveness, anger and hate. But sometimes that choice sheds light on the brightest, best parts of humanity. When we choose love, we shine a light that only keeps growing warmer and brighter, eliminating the darkest places all over the world.

choose love, love, compassion, how to deal with hate, how to get over fear, how to get over anger

 

What are your resolutions for everyone else in 2016?

Moxie’s Resolutions for Everyone Else: The 2015 Edition

Should old acquaintance be forgot, we’ll still have my resolutions for everyone else. You can read previous years’ entries here. Let’s get to it.

1. Recommit to traditional, classic flavors (Nabisco and Mars).

I’m pointing the finger at you, Oreos and M&Ms. Pumpkin spice? Watermelon? Birthday cake? COME ON. Enough already with this flavored crap.

No, no, and never, in that order.

2. Write and mail one postcard a week (everyone).

As many regular readers know, I’m a big fan of traditional letter and card writing. I get that not everyone is into it, so I’d suggest you start slow: send one postcard a week to someone. Write your favorite quote, share a joke, scribble HELLO in big bold letters. It doesn’t have to be complicated, because you’re going to feel awesome (and a touch self-righteous) when the recipient sends you a text to say, “hey, your card really made my day.”

3. Bring back “Surviving Jack” (Fox).

This sitcom set in the early ’90s about a family with the mom going to law school while the doctor dad had to take a bigger role in parenting their 2 teenagers was truly funny. Who would have thought Chris Meloni from “Oz,” “Law & Order: SVU” and “True Blood” would be a master of comic timing? Yet it was canceled after one season. Such bullshit.

4. Stop holding up Portland as a role model for success (Sacramento).

I cannot tell you how many times I have heard someone in this town use Portland as an example of how things could/should be for Sacramento. Whether they are talking about being bike- and pedestrian friendly, environmental issues, cost of living, or real estate, it’s as if Sacramento is Jan Brady to Portland’s Marcia, Marcia, Marcia. Truth is, Sacramento has some amazing restaurants run by nationally recognized, award-winning chefs, one of the best bike/pedestrian trails in the country, an eclectic community of creative professionals and developers, and great coffee. How about we focus on being the best Sacramento we can be and let Marcia Portland do its own thing?

What it's like for Sacramento.

What it’s like for Sacramento.

5. Eliminate gender-specific signs in toy aisles (Target, other big box stores).

As a kid I played with Barbies, Matchbox cars, Legos and Lincoln Logs. I don’t remember anyone making a big deal about boy and girl toys, but that was the ’70s, when Marlo Thomas was making sure kids and their parents knew that it was okay for a little boy to play with a doll. Yet something shifted in recent years and now we have to have this conversation again about toys just being toys. Obama gets it, so why can’t the rest of y’all get it, too? Take down the signs and find a new way to categorize toys.

6. Introduce Mexican chocolate/mochas in winter 2015 (Starbucks).

I’m still unclear as to why Starbucks hasn’t come up with a Mexican mocha or Mexican hot chocolate drink yet. I’ve had baristas make me cinnamon dolce mochas, which come damn close, but they are missing that extra kick. So come on, Bux. You have the technology to create an amazing Mexican chocolate syrup. Make it happen.

7. Stop crashing when I am talking to friends (Google Hangouts, Skype).

Long distance friendships mean lots of phone calls, and I rely on Skype and Google Hangouts for the majority of those calls, as they are free. You can imagine how frustrating it is, then, when I’m in the middle of saying something brilliant, or T-Wizzle or another friend is in the middle of telling me how brilliant I am, and Skype disconnects us. How can my friends and I properly stroke each other’s ego if you keep freakin’ crashing, Skype and Google Hangouts?

8. Become extinct (marmorated stink bugs).

This year I kept finding these ugly little stink bugs on my bedroom curtains, loitering on light fixtures, you name it. Fortunately the cats helped me track the turd-brown pests so I could kill them. These bugs are not good for anything or anyone, so maybe if we all channel our energy, we can drive them to extinction.

marmorated stink bug

I hate you.

9. Refrain from using personal experience as an arbiter of others’ experiences (everyone).

Honestly, I think this has been an issue since the dawn of time: we tend to filter what people tell us through a lens of subjectivity. But it often ends up with people feeling hurt, misunderstood, even angry, because we’re not giving any credence to their truth. With so many more reports of police brutality, campus rape, sexual assault and harassment coming to light, it’s becoming even more important to allow other people an opportunity to share their truth without automatically discounting it as false, simply because it doesn’t fit in with personal experience. My cousin Will (not his real name) wrote a brilliant post on Facebook this month on this topic:

In conflict in a marriage when your wife comes to you and tells you there is a problem, that she is hurt, one way to guarantee that a fight will ensue and that the conflict will drive you further apart is to disagree with her feelings. Sometimes I find myself arguing with Kate’s experience trying to change how she feels instead of trying to change the issue. Or worse yet, I use the time to bring up my experience to try to bully her into giving up her feelings. This is so futile and destructive not only because it shirks responsibility, but because it deters future communication. I CANNOT change her experience. The sooner I swallow my pride driven self-protection and let down my weak attempts to defend my own feelings and BELIEVE her, the sooner we can reach a resolution and a deeper connection in our relationship. Love believes all things; I never understood that before. When you love you believe before you understand.

If we truly want the black and white communities to grow closer together and for race relations to improve, the white community needs to start believing blacks when they speak up. I’m tired of all these anecdotes and statistics and comments being thrown around social media insinuating that there is no problem-they are insensitive; especially if the person posting them is white. If blacks say there is a problem, I am going to believe them. We all should. Only then can this conflict take the unity of our great nation to a deeper level.

10. Take a sabbatical (James Franco).

Dude, we all know you’re this multihyphenate, writing poetry and studying literature and making movies that score high on the spectrum of suckitude, as well as starring in some fantastic films. But how can we truly like you if you won’t go away? Seriously, take a year off. And can you maybe take Seth Rogen with you?

What are your resolutions for others in 2015?

Moxie’s Resolutions for Everyone Else: The 2014 Edition

And now, the (not quite) 6th annual resolutions for everyone else. Because it’s much more fun to tell other people what they need to do differently in the new year.

1. Eliminate the tip credit (federal and state governments)

Few things seem to irritate people more than hearing a waiter/waitress was stiffed on a tip for the craziest reasons – even if the story turns out to be questionable at best. If wait staff were being paid a living wage to begin with, the whole notion of tipping would be a non-issue. Let’s put an end to this nonsense, shall we? (Read this article for more background.)

2. Keep my tongue in my mouth (Miley Cyrus)

Watch her videos and it’s quickly obvious that Miley was the baby who stuck everything she found in her mouth. Girl, it’s time to keep your oral fixation in the bedroom where it belongs.

3. Make an animated feature about quokkas (Disney and/or Pixar)

How did I not know about these cute little marsupials? Probably because they don’t get the same PR treatment as koalas and kangaroos do. Quokkas are born ready for primetime. Look at that smile! Who wouldn’t want to watch a movie about a family of quokkas out on an adventure? Kevin James and Melissa McCarthy could do the voices. Let’s do this, Disney! Or Pixar! Or both of you! I don’t care but I want quokkas!

quokka, Australia, marsupials, cute animals

I would like Jennifer Lawrence to do my voiceover. Or maybe that Rebel Wilson chick.

4. Obey traffic signals and signs (NorCal drivers)

When did red become the new green? It seems in the last few months I’m seeing more and more drivers blow through blatantly red lights, and I’m not sure what happened in the universe that these folks decided it didn’t matter. I pray this isn’t because they are so busy texting while driving that they can’t be bothered with the rules of the road.

5. Chill the f**k out (Kanye West)

Spend more time being a loving, devoted father to your daughter and less time picking fights with late night talk show hosts, online shopping sites, and pretty much anyone and everyone who doesn’t think you’re the greatest thing since the return of the Twinkie.

6. Include discussions of respect and consent in sex education (teachers, parents)

The Interwebs has been blowing up this year with stories of acquaintance rape and rape gangs and all sorts of righteous indignation over how rape culture makes this possible. I’m exhausted by all the yammering – not that it’s not important to bring up these issues, but I’m way more interested in finding solutions. How about we focus on teaching kids from a young age to respect their bodies? Teach them what true consent looks and sounds like? And most importantly, let’s teach them that sexual intimacy is something to be valued, not used as a bargaining chip.

7. Apologize to fans for all the expensive handbags on my sitcom (Mindy Kaling)

Y’all have seen my previous posts about Mindy and her love of the Hermès Birkin, and how the third Birkin sighting was enough for me to stop watching her show. Yes, I’m that petty and ridiculous sometimes. She’s been spotted out and about with her very own Birkin, so I hope that means her handbag needs are being met to the extent that she no longer needs to jump the expensive-purse-carrying shark on her show.

8. Stop pawing at the lampshade at early o’clock (Rooney)

He already broke one lampshade, and he seems hell bent on breaking the other one. Sometimes I question why I have cats in my life.

I would get a photo of Rooney messing with the lamp, but I don't want to encourage him.

I would get a photo of Rooney messing with the lamp, but I don’t want to encourage him.

9. Fix API so third-party app users can tag Pages when scheduling tweets (Facebook)

If you’re not a HootSuite user, or someone who uses a third-party application for posting to Facebook, then this resolution will mean nothing to you. But for those of us who use HootSuite or another service to write & schedule posts/tweets across all our social media accounts, not being able to tag Facebook Pages is frustrating, because then it means we have to go into Facebook and write & schedule posts there, which means we can’t track our analytics in one place. Yeah, I just geeked out there for a second.

10. Continue making awesome original content (Hulu)

I didn’t have access to a TV for the last few months, which meant I streamed all my content online, and when I ran out of network programming I began watching Hulu originals. They are curating some fantastic content over there: The Awesomes, The Booth at the End, Behind the Mask and The Wrong Mans are all fun to watch, well crafted, and just an all-around enjoyable experience. Keep it up, Hulu. But please, no more Botox ads, okay?

Now it’s your turn. What are your resolutions for everyone else?

Moxie’s Resolutions for Everyone Else: The 2013 Edition

It’s that time of year when a young girl’s fancy thirty-five-ish blogger’s rants lightly turn to thoughts of who or what is most in need of New Year’s resolutions. For those who are playing at home, this is the fifth year I’ve written resolutions for others. It’s much more satisfying than writing them for myself. Let’s get to it, shall we?

1. Come up with a universal system for describing toothpaste flavors (toothpaste manufacturers).

I’m talking to you, Crest and Colgate. What the hell does Fresh Mint and Clean Mint mean? And Smooth Mint, what is that? Whatever happened to spearmint and peppermint and wintergreen? I can never remember which stupid mint name refers to wintergreen and every freakin’ time I wind up with damn wintergreen flavored toothpaste which makes me want to gag. ENOUGH.

2. Figure out a really awesome live streaming solution for the next Olympic Games (NBC).

It’s not like we are living in 1984 with monochrome monitors and dial-up modems that make that freaky ring sound. We have video-on-demand, DVRs, Hulu, Netflix, smartphones, YouTube…need I continue? NBC, you blew it big time with the taped delay BS during the Summer Olympics. You have all sorts of money, NBC, and you have a little over a year before the Winter Olympics 2014 start. How about creating on-demand channels where people can watch as many different sports as they want in real time. And you might make even more money that way.

3. Stop expecting privacy when it relates to social media and the Internet (everyone).

I originally started this blog so I could rant & rave with some level of anonymity. Things have changed dramatically since then, and I’m not as anonymous as I used to be. Maybe that’s why I get so frustrated with people who use social networks and expect their identity to remain secret. If you need to have that much privacy, then you need to not be online.

4. Declare a moratorium on flavored vodka (DISCUS).

I don’t know that the Distilled Spirits Council of America really has this authority, but it would be nice to see all these crazy ads for flavored vodka go away. Iced Caramel? Marshmallow? Cupcake?! If you can’t drink liquor that doesn’t taste like candy, then you should not be drinking alcohol. Now where’s that waiter with my martini?

5. Legalize performance-enhancing drugs for use in professional sports (MLB, NBA, NFL, and other professional sports leagues).

It’s happening so often now that it’s become a joke: formerly average player becomes a super player, he/she is tested for performance enhancing drugs, the test is positive, the player is fined/suspended/censured/stripped of any awards. And it’s not going to stop happening, because players want to keep getting high salaries and they do that through outstanding performances on the field/court/track. So how about all you league commissioners and head-level mucky-mucks just legalize this stuff already?

6. Fix the algorithm that determines what constitutes a “Life Event” (Facebook).

My second cousin’s comment on their best friend’s new baby – neither of whom I know personally or have friended on Facebook – does not constitute a Life Event. Neither do the following: a Like on a cartoon, a reposting of yet another photo meme from some Page called LOL All Day Long or some crap, or anything that contains the phrase “repost if you agree.” Fix this shit already, Zuck. I’ve had enough.

7. Shorten the length of all skits (Saturday Night Live).

I don’t watch “Saturday Night Live” very often, but when I do, it’s with Giles, and we’ve both noticed that the skits go way longer than they should. I understand that I am not their target audience (read: drunk or stoned twentysomethings who came home from the bar too early), but from what my younger, former stoner more hip & trendy cousins tell me, the skits aren’t funny to them, either. You have some talented comedians and writers on the show, Lorne, let them shine. And no more variety show-type skits, either. That was funny maybe twice, then it got very old.

8. Develop new OS that makes more efficient use of storage space (Android).

I’ve had an Android phone for over a year now, and as a big user of Gmail, Google Calendar, and Google Apps, I like the seamless integration. But what pisses me off to no end is that damn icon that pops up to say “Disk space is low” on my phone. I have deleted so many apps because my phone can’t handle it. Sadly, it’s not just my inexpensive little LG Optimus V, either – it’s an Android problem. This storage issue never came up with my iPhone. I don’t know if you got the press release, but you’re GOOGLE, dammit. You can FIX THIS.

9. Leave the photos on the wall alone (Rooney and Ippie).

I did not hang items on the wall so you two could play with them, or practice your interior decorating skills. You’re both lucky you’re cute.

Someone knocked over the photo of Momcat and Pops? Wasn’t us. We’ve been here the WHOLE time. Honest.

10. Be willing to speak up or act if something doesn’t seem right (everyone).

Not long after the Newtown school shooting, I posted the following on the GWM Facebook Page. It pretty much sums up my feelings about the situation, and why Resolution #10 is necessary.

We can all agree that what happened in Connecticut is a tragedy. What we can’t seem to agree on is why. I’ve read some posts that say it’s because God isn’t present in the schools. I’ve read others say it’s because there is too much violence in the media. Still others claim it’s lax gun laws, and yet another faction says it has to do with mentally unstable folks not getting proper treatment. The solutions are just as varied.

I don’t claim to know everything, but I do know one thing from years of personal experience: going with your intuition, your gut instinct, rarely proves itself wrong. This means reaching out to someone if you feel they need a friend to listen. It means calling law enforcement if someone you know is saying or doing things that indicate they are unwell and may cause harm to themselves or others. It means being present in the moment and letting that small voice inside speak to our hearts and guide us toward the right action, even if it doesn’t seem right at the time.

Here’s to living in the now, loving each other, and lifting up those who are in need.

 

Have any resolutions for anyone else that you’d like to share?

Moxie’s Resolutions for Everyone Else, the 2012 Edition

For those of you unfamiliar with this feature, every December for the past few years I have made resolutions – not for myself, mind you, but for others who may not be aware of their shortcomings or challenges in a particular area. Without further ado, here’s this year’s list, in no particular order of importance.

1. Start using the area code when giving out phone numbers (Sacramentans)

I love this town, I really do. But y’all need to start accepting the fact that it’s the 21st century and we now have to dial the area code before the 7-digit number. Furthermore, some of us bring our mobile numbers from other areas with us when we move to Sacto, and we’re not going to assume that every number is in the 916 area code. And please refrain from getting hostile when asked for the area code. Thanks ever so much.

2. Avoid references to myself when supporting someone who is grieving (everyone)

If you’ve ever lost a loved one you recognize this syndrome. It’s when someone says “I am sorry for your loss,” then instead of stopping there they add, “My dad/uncle/great grandma/pet lizard/favorite ficus died recently.” We are all hurting on some level. But when someone’s grief is very fresh and raw, the last thing they need and want to hear is about your suffering and grief. Set it aside for a moment and focus on them.

3. Stop biting the iPhone cord and any other cords I come across around the apartment (Rooney Jackson)

This means you, kitty.

cat, kitten, orange and white kitten

4. Add a store to downtown Sacramento (Trader Joe’s, Container Store)

Downtown Sacramento needs to amp things up, shopping-wise, and I think a Trader Joe’s AND a Container Store would do the trick. There are plenty of vacant retail spaces. And I’m sure you’ll get a sweet deal from the city to move in. C’mon, whaddya say?

5. Focus on helping people create & sustain successful marriages and less on trainwreck weddings and bridal parties from hell (media)

Yes, there’s a lot of entertainment value in weddings, bridezillas and all the wedding accouterments. It’s shiny and chaotic and hard to look away. But society has lost sight of the bigger picture, which is that a marriage is supposed to, by design, last much longer than a wedding. As usual, I blame the media for this problem. How about we start helping people understand what it takes to make a marriage work? If that means a reality show about couples counseling/premarital counseling, okay, I can be with that. But please, no more wedding shows.

6. Let Moxie organize my kitchen (Giles)

Giles has this great kitchen with lots of cabinet space, but he isn’t taking full advantage of it. He also keeps moving the grater and the measuring cup and that makes me loopy, because just when I think I’ve opened the correct drawer, it’s not there. If he would just let me organize the kitchen, life would be so much better for everyone. There would also be world peace. I’m just saying.

7. Give up on the whole McCafe thing and focus on serving good food (McDonald’s)

To be fair, I don’t think I’ve had a coffee-esque beverage from McDonald’s since they went all McStarbucks. And I understand wanting to keep up with the competition. I know Starbucks, and you, Ronald McDonald, are no Starbucks. You will never be Starbucks. So let’s cut the crap and go back to making burgers, fries, chicken nuggets and Happy Meals, ‘kay?

8. Make autocorrect smarter, more like T9 was back in the day (texting software programmers)

Now that I’ve transitioned to an Android phone, I don’t have the autocorrect issue so much anymore, for which I am grateful. And if it wasn’t for autocorrect we wouldn’t have such a hilarious website as Damn You Autocorrect.  The truth is there’s no reason why texting software can’t be made smarter. Remember T9 and how you could train it to know your word/phrase preferences? Can’t there be texting software like that?

9. Tone down the snarkitude and turn up the positivity (Ms. Chick)

Near the beginning of this year I met Ms. Chick, an attractive, funny blogger here in town. I want to see her happy, but sometimes I think she is committed to being unhappy and cynical about everything. I’m calling her out on the blog not to publicly shame her, but to let her know via the interwebs that I think she is awesome and that if she stopped broadcasting all the negativity and snark, she would have a much richer, happier experience of the world.

10. Stop donating to groups that have an anti-gay platform (Chick-Fil-A)

Isn’t there a way the Chick-Fil-A people can donate to faith-based causes without donating to ones that are more about hate than love? Because a Chick-Fil-A chicken sammich is all about love. So are waffle fries.

Moxie’s Resolutions for Everyone Else: The 2011 Edition

Holy cannoli, it’s the end of 2010 already? That can only mean one thing: it’s time to pop the cork and enjoy a glass of something bubbly while reading my 2011 resolutions for everyone else. I’ll be sitting here, sipping my Prosecco, while you read.

1. Refuse to take low paying writing gigs. (writers)

It pisses me off to see job postings where the employer, usually a blog or web portal, is paying $5 for a 500-word article and then have the audacity to expect 25-35 posts of that length per week. No wonder we have so much crap all over the Internet, because if you pay me one cent per word there is no way you’re going to get New Yorker-quality writing from me. If you want to make it as a writer and be truly challenged, stop taking piddly-ass assignments. And for the established writers who know good writing, don’t you dare let me catch you doing this.

2. Stop telling my GPS system how to do its job. (anyone who gets in my car)

Ever since I got a Garmin GPS for my birthday this year, I have had to deal with riders who argue with the navigator or who want to tell me, “Oh, I’ll tell you how to get there.” Inevitably they make the drive more difficult than if they had just let the GPS do its job. I bought the GPS for two reasons: a) I like cool gadgets; and b)I don’t have to listen to someone argue with me about the best route to take. If you don’t like GPS systems THEN DRIVE YOUR OWN DAMN CAR.

3. Shop more often at local, independently owned stores. (everyone)

Yes, there are great deals to be had at big-box stores. But the little guys really need our help right now. The 3/50 Project has an excellent solution: spend $50 a month at 3 locally owned, independent businesses. In the grand scheme of things, $50 isn’t that much – you were going to buy that book or shampoo anyway, right? So why not at a local shop? And if you’re looking for something truly unusual and fun to give as a gift, shopping in a neighborhood with several quirky little boutiques is the way to go.

4. Learn the rules of the road and follow them. (California bicycle riders)

This summer I lived in Davis, the City of Bikes, and I saw many bike riders who were very good about using hand signals (not the one where you use one finger), putting lights on their bikes when riding at night, and being respectful of cars and pedestrians. However, I also saw many bike riders who were arrogant little brats, nearly mowing me down on sidewalks (Side note: Get off the sidewalk, asshole! It’s a sideWALK, not a sideRIDE!) and ignoring stop signs and traffic lights. As soon as you put your body on top of a wheeled contraption you became a car, so behave like one. And if you aren’t sure of the rules of the road for bicycles, go study them.

5. Stop when I see a pedestrian in the crosswalk. (California drivers)

I have seen so many people plow through intersections, not even bothering to look and see if anyone is crossing the street or just beginning to cross. I have yelled curses and insults at them, but of course they can’t hear me because they are driving 45 miles an hour through a 30 zone. Having seen a pedestrian get hit by a car, I try to be particularly careful when driving through areas with a lot of foot traffic. Slow down, Speed Racer, and save your road rage for the freeway. Oh, and pedestrians, you’re not helping when you wave a car through. You’re in the crosswalk, so WALK, dammit. It’s called having the right of way.

6. Install an automated postal service center. (US Post Office on Broadway in Sacramento)

I love the automated postal service centers because they make life so much easier when I need to mail out packages and I can use the machine even if the counter is closed. Sadly my favorite local post office doesn’t have one of these machines. Please put one in, Mr. Postman! I promise I will still come to see you at the counter and crack my usual stupid jokes!

7. Hire a maid and a personal assistant. (T-Wizzle)

T-Wizzle is a brilliant woman and also extremely busy. For the last year she has been complaining about how hard it is to keep up with everything she needs to do and still have a clean house. I have repeatedly told her to hire a housekeeper but for some unknown reason she still hasn’t done it. Same with the personal assistant. So I am now resorting to calling her out on the blog in the hope she will finally hire someone and give herself a much needed break from the anxiety and frustration that comes from not having her home looking the way she wants, or from feeling overwhelmed by to-do lists.

8. Stop bothering Jesus. (Ippie the Tech Wizard Kitten)

This resolution is best explained with visual aids.

This is Jesus.

This painting is more than 60 years old and once hung in my great-grandparents’ farmhouse.

This is Ippie the Tech Wizard Kitten.

Ippie sitting on top of her scratching post. She’s a climber, that Ippie.

See the shelving unit behind Ippie? It’s currently sitting underneath where the Jesus painting is hanging in my bedroom. When Ippie is feeling rambunctious – which is damn near all the time because she is a young cat with delusions of being a monkey – she will jump onto the top shelf. When she’s feeling particularly feisty, she reaches up and starts batting at Jesus with her paws. My neighbors must be very puzzled by my shouts of “Leave Jesus alone!” and “Stop messing with Jesus!” They may even be tickled by my cries of “You can look at Jesus but you CANNOT TOUCH HIM!” I get that people would touch Jesus’ robes to be healed of their leprosy and whatnot, but this is ridiculous.

9. Cut my toenails inside my apartment. (my next door neighbor)

Twice now I have overheard this strange metallic click-click-click coming from outside my door. The first time I looked out the window to see my neighbor sitting at the top of the stairs, clipping his toenails. I was grossed out. On Christmas Eve, I heard the sound again. What is wrong with you, dude? Is your bathroom not good enough for your precious toenail clippings? And even more disgusting, it’s been over two months since I last heard you clip them – unless you took advantage of the stairs at the building across the street, that’s poor hygiene, man. Just really, really poor hygiene.

10. Put my shopping cart in the cart corral in the parking lot, or make sure it’s out of the way of other cars. (shoppers everywhere)

Few things annoy me more than finding a parking space and pulling in about 3/4 of the way, only to discover that some moron has left their empty shopping cart right at the front of the space. Actually, here’s what annoys me more: people who were obviously parked right next to the cart corral, or two spaces down, and they couldn’t be bothered to push their empty cart into the corral. Some businesses have opted not to have these cart corrals in the lots, so I can understand some of the stranded carts. But could you at least move the cart away so it’s not hitting my car? Or anyone else’s, for that matter?

What are your resolutions for other people for 2011?

Moxie’s Resolutions for Everyone Else: 2010 Edition

As is the tradition on this blog for several years running, I have compiled my list of 2010 resolutions…but not for me. I am perfect and only need to resolve to have compassion for those who haven’t achieved perfection. Everyone else, however – you have a hell of a lot of work to do.

  1. Learn the value of silence. (Cell phone users) Yes, it’s tempting to get on your Droid or iPhone or Crackberry every time you’re out and there’s nothing or no one actively working to entertain you. Of course, I wouldn’t know anything about this because I’m perfect. (cough cough) There’s something to be said for having a moment of tranquility where all gadgets are off and you’re just observing the world around you. The Internet is not going anywhere, so give yourself at least five minutes every hour to just be still.
  2. Stop Christmas Creep, Valentine’s Day Invasion and Easter Edge-out. (Major retailers) Can we just enjoy holidays without being rushed to prepare for the next one? I give Nordstrom kudos for not succumbing to the Creep this Christmas.
  3. Improve my service and coverage area. (AT&T) I don’t understand this company. They want everyone to buy an iPhone, upgrade their iPhones, get any other smartphone they are selling, and yet they complain that iPhone users who stream movies and other video are screwing up the network. Their solution? Get iPhone users to use wifi as much as possible. Um, hello? How about putting the proper infrastructure in place before releasing advanced technology? Oh crap, there I go making sense again. No wonder I don’t have a job.
  4. Stop whining and be with the consequences of being famous. (Miley Cyrus and other celebs who claim to have no privacy) Get over yourselves already. As soon as you decided you wanted to be an actor or singer or professional athlete, you signed up for the possibility that you would a) make it to the big time and b) become a target for the tabloids. You don’t want this life? Go find a job in retail and shut the hell up.
  5. Find a great marketing agency that will come up with a campaign to remind people of the joy of writing – and sending – letters. (USPS) I’m trying to write more notes and letters to people. It gives me joy to think someone will open their mailbox to see a funny card, newsy note or heartfelt letter, instead of a pile of bills and junk mail. The US Postal Service is already struggling financially, so why not play up the sentimental side of letter writing/receiving and start a campaign where folks are encouraged to write one letter every 10 days? It would help improve literacy too, I’d bet.
  6. Start up Chick-Fil-A franchises in Chicago. (Chick-Fil-A) This resolution is a shout-out for T-Wizzle, who is a big fan of Chick-Fil-A and gets mad at me whenever I mention I went there for a sammich. I don’t understand why the chain hasn’t expanded into the Chicago market. They like chicken up there. And sweet tea, too.
  7. Know my limits when it comes to home repair and be humble enough to call in professional repair personnel. (my apartment management and others who DIY it) I could go on for days about all the craptastic fix-it jobs I’ve seen at my building. Pops also has a tendency to fix things in a half-assed way, but fortunately he’s learning the limits of his expertise in areas such as plumbing. Rule of thumb: If you have to use more than 6 inches of duct tape to fix something, then you don’t know what the hell you’re doing and need to call in a professional.
  8. Stop assuming that everyone over the age of 30 knows absolutely nothing about technology. (Generation Y and younger) Don’t roll your eyes at me when I ask a question about tethering or live streaming, and don’t talk to me as if I am completely ignorant about computers. If it wasn’t for my generation and the baby boomers, you wouldn’t have even had computers in your first grade classroom. Learn to appreciate your elders and what they have made possible.
  9. Stop assuming that everyone under the age of 30 is an arrogant jackass. (Generation X, baby boomers and older) Yes, this is a tough one. While Gen Y may be incredibly self-absorbed at times, they are also showing themselves to be committed to making the world a better place. Teach them the rules, then show them how to break them in a way that no one gets hurt.
  10. Break up with food additives. (Campbell’s, Kraft, and other major food manufacturers) I am tired of reading 2-inch long food labels listing all the chemicals and other crap in a can of soup. I get that you want people to be repeat buyers of your products, but can’t you do that without adding MSG, high fructose corn syrup, GMOs and other garbage? Explore new ways of making delicious food without all the extra gunk.

Any resolutions you’d like to give someone else?

Moxie’s 2007 Resolutions…For Everyone Else

What’s that, you’ve already forgotten your resolutions for 2007? No matter. You weren’t going to really keep them to the letter, anyway, so why not join your girl Moxie and make resolutions for other people instead? Because let’s face it, we know what we need to fix in ourselves, but other folks might be a little clueless what they need to work on. So in true Moxie fashion, here are my resolutions for everyone else.

1. Stop holding up beauty pageant winners as a moral compass (the pageant organizations and Donald Trump)
When I was in my late teens and early twenties, I was fun-loving, arrogant, loud, and passionate. I followed my impulses, which didn’t always align with my highest good. And I was not the epitome of Bible-Belt morality or the arbiter of Judeo-Christian ethics. I think many women would agree that the years between 17 and 25 aren’t necessarily the years when you make the most rational decisions on what to do with your life. So this whole notion of holding up these pageant contestants as being this beacon of light for society is a load of hooey.

2. Acknowledge my inherent racism (Mel Gibson, Michael Richards, and anyone else who trots out the phrase “I’m not racist”)
Over the past few months I’ve been making my peace with my racism, ageism, sexism, and all the other isms I’ve got going on. No, it’s not cool when some white dude publicly starts screaming about Jews or black people. But the truth is that we all have some ism floating around. Deal with your own isms and stop making your insecurity and sense of self-worth, not to mention other people’s worth and confidence level, contingent upon race, age, sex, or religion.

3. Create more left-turn arrows at intersections (CalTrans)
Is there a logical explanation as to why major intersections on Sepulveda Blvd. don’t have left-turn arrows? And what about the light at Redondo and 7th Street? Does CalTrans think that if they don’t put up an arrow, no one will turn? What about all the dillholes that run the light turning left because that’s the only time it’s clear to turn? This f—s up the traffic for everyone. If any of my readers can explain this to me, please post a comment.

4. Stop turning movies into musicals and then back into movies (major studios)
It started with The Producers and now it’s taking on a life of its own. I liked Hairspray the first time around – it was funny and wacky. And it sounds like the stage show was very fun. But why do I need to see John Travolta in drag in this movie? Why does anyone, for that matter? I did enjoy Spamalot immensely, and I loved Monty Python and the Holy Grail. But please, for the love of Steve, don’t touch it anymore. If it ain’t broke, don’t add a song-and-dance number!

5. Get rid of audible car alarms (automotive industry)
Nowadays, whenever a car alarm goes off, people look for a second, then start grimacing. That’s because most of the time the alarm is triggered because of owner error or by some gangsta wannabe who’s driving by with the bass turned way up on his stereo. Make GPS-based antitheft systems the new standard.

6. Wear less perfume (people that wear any fragrance)
Maybe I am just hypersensitive to scents, but it seems like very few people know how to apply cologne and perfume anymore. Men seem to be repeat offenders with cologne. Guys, here’s a tip: spray just one short spray on your midsection and don’t put it anywhere else on your body. And do not reapply cologne before going out. I do not want to smell your Paco Rabanne for days after we’ve walked by each other in Trader Joe’s.

7. Use RSVP’s properly (Meetup members)
I am sick of people who RSVP “yes” to events that I plan for my Meetup groups and then don’t bother to show up, nor do they bother to update their RSVP or contact me to say they can’t make it. You know full freakin’ well if you’re coming or not. Do us all a favor and just RSVP “no” from the get-go. That way we can be pleasantly surprised when you drag your ass out from behind the keyboard.

8. Use my cell phone’s headset every time I’m driving (cell phone owners on the CA freeways)
Apparently we use the same part of our brain to drive and talk on the phone. That being said, it does make it a little easier to navigate when you use a headset – I am speaking from experience on this one. So go find yourself a nice Bluetooth or wired headset and keep it with you in the car at all times. If anything it will prevent a few dirty looks from me when I pass your VW Bug going 50 in a 65 zone and see you clutching a pink Razr to your ear.

9. Take my dog to the dog park and/or beach twice a week (my upstairs neighbor)
You are a nice girl and your pit bull mixed-breed dog is very cool. But she needs more exercise. How do I know this? Because I can hear her running around your apartment like a maniac when you aren’t home. It’s kind of funny and yet it makes me sad for your dog – these apartments are way too small for a dog bigger than a breadbox. My friend C. hosts a group for active dogs – I can hook you up.

10. Turn down the in-store music (The Gap, Old Navy, Forever 21, Sephora, and other stores that do this crap)
I am not sure why you feel the need to blast club and house music while I’m looking at merino wool sweaters and microfiber t-shirts. If this continues I’m going to come in to your store wearing my going-out clothes, makeup thick enough to ski through, and carrying a fifth of vodka. I will stand in your store and get rip-roaring drunk, start yelling things like “This place is DOPE! Woot woot!”, and grind inappropriately on other customers. You want a party-like atmosphere, I’ll give you a freakin’ party. Moxie in the HOOOWWWSE, fo’shizzle!