Hypnotism and Humiliation: Vegas-Style!

Hypnotism & Humiliation - Vegas Style
So then…I take my two teens and their three pals on an educational Spring Break trip to Washington DC to learn more about our nation’s politics.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

Are you kidding me?

I take ‘em to Vegas!

You can click here for Part 1 of our shenanigans –

And now for Part 2 –

HYPNOTIST SHOW

My teens, Chloe and Tucker, and their pals want to see a Hypnotist Show, so we head over to the Marc Savard show at the V Theater.

I glance about skeptically as we file in and sit down.

The hypnotist starts speaking. I cross my arms.

I don’t believe in hypnotism.

The hypnotist tells the audience that lots of people think they don’t believe in hypnotism.

(Well, he’s psychic at least! That’s exactly what I’m thinking!)

The hypnotist says that’s like saying, “I don’t believe in gravity,” but it still exists. “Hypnotism exists whether you believe or not.”

I smirk. No such thing. His “volunteers” will obviously be plants – people he hired to pretend to be hypnotized.

He calls for volunteers from the audience. My son’s friend Marco stands up. WHAT!?

Marco goes on stage, gets hypnotized with the other volunteers — and starts following the commands of the hypnotist — tapping, standing, snoring, squirming, making funny faces, reacting to imaginary snakes, and RIVER DANCING!

Yes – RIVER DANCING! – 18-year-old tall, cool Marco is kicking his Irish Jig legs all akimbo, enthusiastically strutting and popping heel-toe-heel-toe, sideways kick!

So unless Marco is secretly on this hypnotist’s payroll, I guess hypnotism IS real?

Mind blown.

We’re all laughing hysterically at the antics on stage.

The hypnotist convinces one volunteer that she’s wildly in love with him – and convinces another that she’s repulsed by him.

He hypnotizes a huge muscular guy to respond to every shoulder tap by breaking down into sobs and hugging whoever’s closest to him!

He tells them all that a belt is a snake, so when he approaches with the belt and a hiss, they all flip the flip out!

Then the hypnotist brings out a STRIPPER POLE and invites the volunteers to AUDITION!

My son and I exchange a look. A look that says, “This is about to get REALLY awkward.”

Nothing like watching your guy friend attempt sultry stripper moves in front of your Mom. Not to mention the rest of the audience.

If he performs really badly – it’s embarrassing.

If he performs really well – it’s even more disturbing!

Should I storm the stage and rescue my teen charge? Should I just avert my eyes?

Who suggested this damn show? Why aren’t we doing something respectable like visiting the MGM lions?

Fortunately, the hypnotist is playing the scene for laughs – so he quickly taps the “strippers” if they start to take their audition a little too seriously.

And believe me, some of these volunteers tackle this task with a gusto and passion that’ll make your eyes bleed!

The audience is dying laughing – Marco’s looking like he’s having a great time – and yes OF COURSE we pay the $20 bucks for the DVD of tonight’s show so that we have Marco Blackmail Material for many years to come!

(Perfect wedding reception video, don’t ya think?)

All in all, we have an absolute blast swimming, sightseeing, dining, and enjoying shows. We love us some Vegas!

Of course, about 3 hours into the drive home to LA, Marco realizes that the $120 cash he put in the room safe for safekeeping was still safely IN the safe!!

As we call Lost & Found, I can’t help wondering if the hypnotist hypnotized Marco to leave the money there — and secretly extracted the safe code from Marco so he could recover the money himself!

Hmm…googling “How to become a hypnotist” right now!

— Darcy Perdu

UPDATE!  Because the internet is a miraculous place, my blogging friend Jessica Ziegler of hilarious Science of Parenthood saw this story and said she KNOWS hypnotist Marc Savard – then HE commented too!     Hypnotism (Facebook comments)

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(Do YOU believe in hypnotism? Can I BECOME a hypnotist so I can make business colleagues bend to my will & make my kids clean their rooms & make hot celebs fall in love with me? What would you do with YOUR hypnotism powers?)

For hilarious tales from the front lines of parenting — and my story of the most embarrassing thing I’ve EVER done — buy this rockin’ new book, I STILL Just Want to Pee Alone!
I Still Just Want To Pee Alone at Amazon.com




Click the Buy Now button for an autographed copy mailed right to your door!

Dispatches from Spring Break Vegas Trip

So then…I consider all the educational, enriching, cultural landmarks I can visit with my kids on Spring Break – and instantly choose VEGAS!

Dispatches from Spring Break Vegas Trip

That’s right, I’m taking my two teens and three of their teen friends to Vegas for Spring Break!

Gambling! Drinking! Strip Clubs!

Oh wait. That’s for my business trips to Vegas.

This is a family-friendly trip! Recalculating, recalculating…

Still a go!
Tucker & Chloe, their 3 pals, and I head off to Nevada!
And now, here are Dispatches from Our Vegas Trip:

PLANNING OUR WEEK
Me: OK Kids, what would you like to do in Vegas?

Maggie (daughter’s friend): Oh! I’d love to see a hypnotist show & swim in the wave pool at Mandalay Bay & go to the buffet at Aria & — well, if I wasn’t anti-MGM—

Me: Why are you anti-MGM?

Maggie: Because they have lions in captivity in their hotel lobby! That’s so cruel!

Me: Oh, OK. Well, if you weren’t anti-MGM, what would you wanna do there?

Maggie (quietly, sheepishly): See the lions.

Me: *blink*

Maggie: What?

Me: Ha! I thought you were going to say, eat at MGM’s Rainforest Café or see a certain show there – but the thing you’d want to see there is the very thing that prevents you from going there? You’re hilarious!

Maggie: Um…thank you?

(PS We did end up at Rainforest Café later, but we respectfully averted our eyes from any potentially captive lobby lions.)

1 Dispatches Pool 429

POOLSIDE FUN
Heading down to the pool – but first, I’m in the shower –
shaving legs, underarms…and now toes? TOES? Holy Hell!

Where did these Hairy Hobbit Hooves come from?
Am I the only one with this affliction? I gotta shave those li’l puppies!
But I can’t even touch my toes on dry land!
How am I gonna reach ‘em in a slippery shower wielding a sharp razor?
Oh Lordy – pray for me!
Two band-aids later…

1 Dispatches Michael_Jackson_One_graphic 429

CIRQUE DU SOLEIL – MICHAEL JACKSON ONE
There are about 87 Cirque du Soleil shows in this town. This one features Michael Jackson. I thought he was no longer with us but hey, this is Vegas – anything’s possible.

Wow, awesome show! These performers are phenomenally talented! Not sure if that last dancer was actually Michael – or a hologram – but either way, damn, can he dance!

1 Dispatches Michael hologram

PS: Quitting my job to become trampoline-artist with Cirque du Soleil! Those guys have a blast! I’m uniquely qualified for this job! When I fall, I bounce! Sign me up!

1 Dispatches Trampoline

ARIA BUFFET
All the foods. All over the world. All at once. All in mah belly!
Deee-lish!

1 Dispatches Buffet Seafood

FREMONT STREET
Wade into the wild, wonderful sea of humanity in downtown Las Vegas? Sure!

1 Dispatches Fremont Sign
Yes, kids, you can zip line down Fremont Street over the heads of all these drunk tourists and street performers, but be careful of pickpockets and affectionate lushes as we make our way to the zip line.

Don’t get too close to anyone or you’ll end up mugged and pregnant with an STD and a meth addiction.

1 Dispatches Fremont Zip Line

Stay tuned for Part 2 of Dispatches from Spring Break Vegas Trip…
— Darcy Perdu

If you enjoyed this post, you can receive NEW funny posts by subscribing HERE!

(Seriously, what the hell with the toe hair? Anybody, anybody? Meanwhile, what’s your favorite thing to do in Vegas?)

For hilarious tales from the front lines of parenting — and my story of the most embarrassing thing I’ve EVER done — buy this rockin’ new book, I STILL Just Want to Pee Alone!
I Still Just Want To Pee Alone at Amazon.com




Click the Buy Now button for an autographed copy mailed right to your door!

I’m Published! In a BOOK! Aw HELL Yeah!

So then…I’m published!

I bound up the stairs, then execute a flawless triple axel from the balcony, two cartwheels, and some enthusiastic twerking!

Followed by my SUPAH STAH pose:

Molly Shannon

Shout out to the incomparable Mary Katherine Gallagher (Molly Shannon)!

Yep, I’m published, peeps!

In a real live book!

THIS BOOK!
I Still Just Want To Pee Alone at Amazon.com
And you can OWN this book!

For a mere $9.99!

Just click this little book ritecheer:     

OR I can personally autograph the book and mail it to your house for a slight upcharge of $3.00 to cover shipping, handling, pen ink, and the laborious labor of me actually signing your book – plus workmen’s comp in case I sustain a signing-related injury. Just PayPal me a total of $12.99 to darcy@sothenstories.com — and tell me to whom to inscribe the literary tome – as well as your personal home address so I can mail you the book (and watch you while you sleep).





“Darcy, you know we worship the very ground you walk upon,
but is this book really worth the money?”

HELLS YEAH!

Not only does it contain MY hysterical true tale, it contains HILARIOUS & HEARTFELT stories and essays from 39 other kick-ass writers.

Jen Mann, New York Times best-selling author, hand-picked the 40 contributors in this book to produce one helluva rollickin’ read!

“I am mightily intrigued! What’s your story about?”

Well, you know how I share some of my most bodacious blunders and hilarious humiliations on this blog so you can laugh out loud – and cringe, thanking the Good Lord you’re not me?

Well, the story I share in this book is THE MOST EMBARRASSING thing I have EVER done.

And it’s in PUBLIC – like, VERY PUBLIC.  Like DISNEYLAND PUBLIC. 

And it’s HYSTERICAL!

Seriously! One time, I tried to TELL the story verbally – but I was laughing and crying so hard, gasping for breath, I couldn’t even get the words out!

So I had to write it down! And submit it to this anthology! And Jen Mann chose it for the book, so I CAN’T WAIT for you to read it!

And if any of you awesome peeps are going to be in the LA area on April 30, you can come celebrate with me, Jen Mann, and 3 other contributors, Kathryn Leehane, Tracy Sano, and Mackenzie Cheeseman at our Book Reading/Signing Party!

We’re all humor writers so we’re going to read hella-funny stuff, share cupcakes, and sign books! So if you happen to live near LA, email me at darcy@sothenstories.com if you can join us at 12 noon on April 30 at Calabasas Library, 200 Civic Center Way, Calabasas, CA!

Meanwhile, you’ll also enjoy reading all the stories and essays in the book by the other fabulously talented writers!

And guess what?  PERFECT MOTHER’S DAY GIFT!

Aw hell yeah!

So pony up some pretty pennies to buy a copy for you – and yo mama – and yo sister & neighbor & teacher & Zumba partner & parole officer!

THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY DID-I-MENTION-I’M-A-PUBLISHED-AUTHOR HEART!

— Darcy Perdu

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(So excited, you guys! Hope you check out the book at Amazon.com – or the library – or just read over someone’s shoulder! I hope you like it!!)

Eject the Pervert!

Ejecting the Pervert from NYC bus!  A funny tale of bravery and bedlam!  #funny @SoThenStories.com

So then…my sister glares at the stranger with the white-hot intensity of a thousand suns, telepathically conveying, “Someone’s getting’ thrown from this bus – and it ain’t gonna be me, buddy!”

Let me back up.

My darling sister Dawn is visiting me in New York City for the first time, along with her husband.

We’re all in our 20’s and I’m so excited to show off the city I’ve called home a couple years now.

I take them to:

Stunning museums!
Fabulous Broadway shows!
International restaurants!
Cool dance clubs!
And world-renowned landmarks!

And for ever after, when people ask her about her first trip to Manhattan, does she share those wondrous sights, sounds, and experiences?

Nope.

She shares this story:

Dawn, her husband, and I take the subway from midtown Manhattan all the way downtown to Battery Park for a huge 4th of July festival.

All day and night, New Yorkers make their way down to the harbor to see the ships and fireworks.

It’s a blast!

But then the event’s over. And all those hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers want to go home UPTOWN right now.

Like RIGHT NOW.

Naturally the mass transit system can’t handle ALL of us at once, so we walk in big massive sweaty throngs from subway entrance to subway entrance, hoping to find one that’s open. But they’re all packed from overcrowding.

Finding a taxi is laughable and traffic ain’t moving anyway.

We consider waiting it out, but late night in Battery Park’s a bit sketchy.

The crack ho’s and meth heads are puzzled why their ‘hood’s mobbed with anxious Uptown preppies. “Get out the way, preppies. You’re harshing our mellow.”

So we trudge onward, desperate for any mode of transportation.

FINALLY we see a bus. It is full. We board anyway.

Every inch of space is taken with tired cranky people in various degrees of inebriation.

In the mayhem, the three of us are separated as we stand in the aisle squeezed amongst tons of other people.

As the bus inches its way uptown, we hear some murmuring, annoyed tsking, and a couple “Hey!s” from the right side of the bus.

My sister’s on that side of the bus — but her husband’s in the back and I’m on the far left, so we can’t really see what’s happening.

We find out later from my sister that there’s a man who is…how do I say…slightly tipsy? intoxicated? – ok, SMASHED OUT OF HIS EVER-LIVIN’ MIND!

Apparently, this big tall guy decides to lean into the women standing next to him – and I mean LEEEEEAN into them.

He wants to share his Rocket Pocket and NO ONE is buying. As soon as he leans his pelvicular area into some girl or woman, they push him away, but he just gets gropey elsewhere.

Passengers complain to the bus driver, who says, “I’m not allowed to leave my seat – can someone back there help out!?”

Lots of mumbling, but no action.

Bus keeps moving; the drunk guy keeps leaning his Joy Junk into the women near him. People are telling him to cut it out but he just shouts belligerently. He’s bobbing and swaying – and lunges in my direction.

My sister Dawn – my sweet petite darling sister who wouldn’t hurt a fly says, “That’s it, buddy, you’re OUTTA here!”

He laughs. She shouts, “Off the bus!” He turns away. She calls to the driver, “Stop the bus! This guy’s gettin’ off.”

The guy curses and moves away from her, squeezing into the crowd in front of him.

MY SISTER FOLLOWS HIM.

She keeps telling him, “Off the bus. Off the bus, buddy.”

He resists. She follows and starts tapping him on the shoulder! He’s at least a foot taller than her! It’s like David poking Goliath.

She’s nudging him toward the exit. He resists and curses.

She perseveres.

Her husband and I are in shock – we’re separated from her by about 30 people in each direction. We can’t even reach her to help her!

She keeps prodding him closer and closer to the exit. People try to squeeze out of the way to give them a tiny path to stumble through.

Now he’s in that little step well next to the doors, but hanging on for dear life. He does NOT want to exit the bus.

The driver stops the bus and pushes the door’s auto-open button. My sister keeps nudging the guy, pushing him politely but firmly in the back, saying, “You need to get off the bus now, go home – go home, guy” – and finally shoves him out the door!

THE BUS ERUPTS INTO HUGE CHEERS!

The driver quickly pushes the auto-close button, drives up a couple blocks, stops the bus, stands up and says,

“Men! You oughta be ashamed of yourselves! I legally can’t leave my seat or lay hands on any passenger! I can’t believe you let that tiny little girl throw that drunk pervert off the bus! You should’ve helped her!” Then he turns to my sister and says, “Good job, young lady. I thank you – we all do!”

And the bus claps and cheers for my sister again – and all the men look a bit sheepish – and honestly, the ones who were close enough to that section of the bus could have helped a bit –

But hey, hell hath no fury like my sister when someone’s shoving their unwelcome boy toy willy-nilly into a crowd!

And ya know what? That’s a helluva better First-Trip-to-New-York story than some dusty ol’ museum recap!

Go Dawn! Girl Power for the Win!

— Darcy Perdu

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(Do you agree the stories of what went wrong are often more memorable than what went right? Any tales of bravery to share?)

Remember All Those Cool Vacations You Took with Your Young Kids? Well, THEY Don’t. Nope. Nada.

Remember all those cool vacations you took with your young kids?  Well, THEY don't.  Nope.  Nada.  #funny SoThenStories.com #vacation

So then…a sailboat skims the lake on a TV show and my son, Tucker, age 12, says, “That looks cool. I want to go sailing someday.”

I pause the TV. “You DID go sailing! Don’t you remember? At Club Med!”

“What’s Club Med?” he asks.

“Omigod, you don’t remember that? We went to Club Med a few years ago on vacation – and you went sailing – and jet skiing!”

Blank look.

***
A few months later, a neighbor kid talks about losing her first tooth, so I say, “Tucker lost his first tooth at the Alamo!” Tucker laughs and says, “Yeah, while eating popcorn!”

My daughter, Chloe, age 9, says, “You guys went to the Alamo? Isn’t that in Texas?”

“Yes! You were there too! Don’t you remember?” I ask.

“No. Are you sure?”

“Yes, I’m sure! Don’t you remember the Texas family reunion – and we all toured the Alamo?”

Blank look.

***
A few months later, we talk about buying raffle tickets for the school fundraiser. Chloe says, “Nah, I never win anything.”

“Sure you do,” I say. “Remember when you won bingo on that cruise a few years ago?”

“Cruise?” she says.

Oh.My.God.

***
Why in the world am I saving up all my pennies to pay for vacations for these kids when they don’t even remember GOING on the vacations?

Sure, they were young back then, but REALLY? Those were some of the coolest, most fun, most special family memories – and they don’t even recall BEING there?

At the time, they had a blast! But now, they act like anything earlier than a couple years ago is just a blurry fog.

How did we go from “this is the best vacation ever!” — to “what vacation?”

Nemo’s Dory has a better memory than these kids!

They seem so skeptical, I pull out the photo albums for evidence!

“Here you are at the family reunion on the beach! Yes, that little guy on the raft is YOU!”
“Look, here you are – smiling and laughing on a Disneyworld roller coaster!”
“Here you are on a jet ski! No really, that’s you. That is NOT photoshop. I SWEAR that’s you!”

Honestly, when I think of all the money I had to save to afford going to cool places –

the finagling to get time off work –

the stress of travelling/what do you mean your tummy hurts?/ahh! pass the barf bag –

and the hassle of packing/unpacking/where are those friggin’ water wings? –

And they don’t even REMEMBER that we went on the vacation?!

It makes me wonder why I went to all that bother!

Oh yes, yes, I know that it was probably great for their brain development to go new places and do new activities when they were early grade schoolers, toddlers, tots, and wee ones – even if they can’t remember it now.

And yes, of course, we’re lucky to go on a vacation at all.

And yes, yes, it was enjoyable for us as a family to spend that quality time together.

But whatEVER, people!

A more clever mama WOULD have just photoshopped their kids’ pics into exciting locales and PRETENDED to have vacationed there!

I could’ve saved a bundle!

From now on, I’ll just sprinkle FAKE MEMORIES into my conversations — and the kids will likely believe me since they can’t remember anything anyway!

“These croissants are delicious! Reminds me of that time we all vacationed in Paris.”

“Hey, remember when we cruised up to Alaska and went glacier-hopping?”

“Wow, it’s so hot today – just like our tour of those Hawaiian volcanoes – remember?”

And if they look skeptical, I’m just gonna keep selling it, like it’s totally real.

“This pizza’s almost as good as the pizza we had in Italy. Yeah, we vacationed in Italy. You don’t remember? Oh, sure you do. We went rollerskating at the Sistine Chapel? The Pope stopped by to play badminton? Then Johhny Depp flew us to his private island – and Beyonce came by for paintball? You don’t remember that? Omogish, SO much fun. Pass the pizza, honey.”

Then I’ll just stare off dreamily, smiling – while they look at each other, completely confused.

And if they ask for photographic proof – oh, I will make it, baby –
I WILL MAKE IT!

Remember all those cool vaacations you took with your young kids?  Well THEY don.t. Nope. Nada.  #funny #vacation SoThenStories.com

— Darcy Perdu

If you enjoyed this post, you can receive NEW funny posts by subscribing HERE!

(OK, seriously, when do kid memories kick in? And why didn’t someone tell me? I would’ve just plopped them in a sandbox until THAT age — THEN take them on cool vacations! Am I the only one whose kids don’t remember all the awesome stuff that happened in their early years?)

Insulting the Neighbor Who Saved My Ass

OH HOLY OOPS! How did I end up insulting the neighbor who saved my ass?  Neighbor Fail!  #funny #neighbor #internet #humor

So then…I panic.

I’d promised my daughter Chloe that I’d FaceTime her as soon as she returned from her first high school trip back home in California.

But my older sister Dawn and I are all the way in Florida, packing up our Mom’s old condo since she’s already moved to a new place.

And FaceTime’s not working because Mom had already cancelled the internet!

Panic!

We call Chloe to explain, who asks, mournfully, “Is there a Starbucks or Kinkos nearby so you can FaceTime me from there?”

Her sad little voice is like a million razor-sharp daggers in my heart.

I’m actually fortunate my 15-year-old WANTS to tell me every detail!

I know those days of mother-daughter closeness are numbered. One day I’ll call her at college and she’ll say, “I’m sorry, who is this?”

But Dawn and I have no idea where local internet cafes might be in this town.

And we don’t even HAVE internet to SEARCH for places that DO have internet!

Brainstorm!

“Karen!” I shout.

“What?” asks my sister.

I jump up. “Karen, Karen! Remember, we met her yesterday?” I grab my phone and my water bottle. “Mom’s neighbor Karen probably has internet; I’m going over there.”

So I skedaddle next door and knock.

“Karen! It’s me, Darcy! My mom introduced us yesterday? Do you have internet!? I’m trying to FaceTime my daughter but we don’t have internet anymore.”

She looks a little surprised but she lets me in and gives me one of the bedrooms.

“Thank you, Karen!”

I close the door and FaceTime my daughter who tells me every detail of the entire trip. We laugh, chat, and marvel at what a blast she had. And it makes a huge difference that we can see each other’s reactions and expressions. Hooray FaceTime!

Afterwards, I return to the living room, a little guilty for taking so long. So I do that thing where I effusively thank the person, using their first name a million times to feign some kind of familiarity and friendliness:

“Thank you SO much, Karen – you’re a lifesaver! My daughter would’ve been so sad if we couldn’t FaceTime. You’re such a doll, Karen. Honestly, I’m so relieved you were home. Thanks, Karen!”

She hands me a slip of paper and says, “In case your Mom needs me to forward her mail or anything, just give me a call.”

The paper has a phone number and the word “Diane.”

“Diane!?” I say, disbelievingly. “Why have I been calling you ‘Karen’ this whole time?”

I look at her with furrowed brow and annoyed expression as though it’s HER fault I’ve been calling her by the wrong name.

She looks at me with that perplexed expression that seems to say, “I don’t know, moron – why HAVE you been calling me by the wrong name this whole time, you internet-mooching knucklehead?”

(I might just be imagining that, since she seems like a really sweet person.)

I raise my eyebrows and shake my head as though I’m still not entirely convinced that her name is Diane – and perhaps she is mistaken. There are practically quotation marks around her name when I say, “Oh, OK, well thanks for the internet, “Diane,” and have a good night.”

I march back to my Mom’s place and say to my sister, “You’re not gonna believe this! The neighbor’s name is DIANE!

“Oh,” she says. “I wondered why you called her ‘Karen.’”

???

“WHAT!? You KNEW her name was Diane!? Why didn’t you correct me before I made a fool of myself?”

“I dunno,” she says. “I thought maybe you knew something I didn’t know.”

Like what?
Like she LEGALLY changed her name between yesterday and today?
Or she’s got multiple personality disorder and ‘Karen’s’ the one who knows the internet password?

Good grief!  How embarrassing!

So now I’m not sure who I’m more upset with –
me for my embarrassing error,
my sister for not correcting me BEFORE I went over there,
or Diane’s parents for not naming her Karen.

— Darcy Perdu

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(Who’s really to blame here: me, my sister, Diane’s parents, or someone else all together?  Have YOU called someone by the wrong name? Do your kids share the details of their adventures with you?)

Laptop & Shopping Cart Cropped

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Clown Butlers, Topless Nuns & Free Hugs!

So then…I pull my kid out of school for a couple days and hop a flight to Vegas for a concert of her favorite band.

Vegas Sign 429
Yep, I’m that kind of mom.

The kind that believes in the importance of school –

but also thinks kids deserve an occasional exciting adventure!

And lest you worry about her educational welfare — rest assured Chloe’s a straight A student who takes her academic career so seriously, she writes her AP World History notecards on the flight there!

Vegas WHAP Cards 429

So we meet up with two of her friends and their moms in Vegas to see the R5 band perform.

Vegas Girls at Concert Incognito

Second row, center, baby! And of course I spring for the extra bucks for the Meet & Greet Photo Op.

Vegas R5 and Chloe Icognito

Yep, I’m that kind of mom.

But then again, it IS her 15th birthday. And she LOVES R5.

Vegas Concert 1 Riker & Ross 429

Vegas Concert 2 Rocky 429

In fact, she thinks this MIGHT be my future son-in-law:

Vegas Concert 4 429

Then the next night, we take our daughters to zip-line high above the drunken revelers on rowdy Fremont Street – because –

Vegas Ceiling Fremont Street and Bars 429

Yep, I’m that kind of mom.

While the teens wait in line for the ride, the moms and I position ourselves in the middle of the street so we can photograph our kids as they come zipping across.

We’re treated to an array of colorful characters as we amble down Fremont.

Like these dudes! Do they look like they know how to party – or what? I’d love to hang with these guys!

Vegas Men in Suits 429

We see a tap dancer who appears to have his own Butler Clown.

Vegas Dancer and Clown Butler 429

Showgirls, of course.

Vegas Showgirls 429

Vegas Back of Showgirl 300

Even some Showguys.

Vegas Boy Showgirl 300

This fellow’s really flexible…

Vegas Limbo Man 300

The fellow in red — not so much…

Vegas SuperHeroes 429

But he’s very friendly – look: FREE HUGS!

Vegas Free Hugs on SuperHeroes 429

Bar-top Go-Go Dancers shake what their mama gave ‘em over by the Alcoholic Slushie Machines…

Vegas Go-Go Girl next to Slushies 429

Which you can drink in your very own Fishnet Stocking Beverage Holder with Straw.

Vegas Leg Glasses 429

What are the Bronze Cowboys staring at?

Vegas Bronze Cowboys 300

Oh just a Concert Violinist in a Bikini, of course.

Vegas Violinist Bikini 429

Vegas Violinist Bikini Looking Down 429

Yikes! Things get a little risqué in the Chippendales booth!

Vegas Chippendales 300

Gasp! I hope the NUNS didn’t see that!

Vegas Nuns Back 429

Oh – no worries, they won’t mind — they’re TOPLESS nuns!

Vegas Nuns Side 300

Checking in on the Tap Dancer – yep, his Butler Clown’s still on duty.

Vegas Dancer Still with Butler 429

“Make me some balloon animals, Jeeves!”

“Right away, sir.”

Meanwhile flying high above all this craziness…

Vegas Ceiling Fremont Street 429

Our daughters come zip-lining across the night sky!

Vegas Slotzilla Above 429

We have an absolute blast!

So if you ever want to play hooky from work, just give me a call.

Pull on your favorite outfit,

Vegas Guy in Colorful Bikini Incognito

Grab a Leg o’ Beer,

Vegas Leg Glasses 200

And let’s party it up on Fremont Street!

‘Cuz – yep, I’m that kind of friend!

— Darcy Perdu




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(Would you like to have your own Clown Butler? Have you seen some of these fine folks on Fremont Street? Who’s your favorite?)

Did you already meet the “friends” I made at the last concert I attended with Lady Gaga?

Completely Illogical, Perfectly Hilarious, Coworker Conversation

Completely Illogical, Perfectly Hilarious Coworker Conversation #funny #expenses #office #humor

So then…I open an email from one of the staff, Shelly, asking if she can purchase an item on the company credit card. I click the link and see this:

I email her:
Yes, you can use the company card.
What is the scale for?
We’ll need to note it on the credit card statement.

Shelly emails back:
It will be mainly for mailing purposes.
Thank you.

I reply:
I think it’s funny how you say it’s “mainly” for mailing purposes.
What other purposes are there for a scale of this kind?
Are you starting a meth lab or something?

Shelly does not respond.

This means either:
a) Shelly does not appreciate my sense of humor
or
b) Shelly is starting a meth lab

What do you think?

Speaking of odd expenses – this reminds me that a few months back, one of the salespeople in my department submitted his expense statement for a Dallas trip that included $30 for a hotel gym fee.

Me: Dude, the company doesn’t reimburse gym fees.

Dan: But I skipped dinner. So the company didn’t have to pay for food — just my visit to the gym.

Me: Based on that logic, I could skip dinner on my next trip and buy an alligator. Would the company reimburse me for an alligator?

Dan: (laughing) You can’t buy an alligator for $30 bucks! Besides, if I don’t spend money on dinner, shouldn’t I be able to spend the money on something else I like better?

Me: What if you like strip clubs better?

Dan: I DO like strip clubs better!

Me: (laughing) But the company won’t reimburse you for strip club admission!

Dan: (laughing) But they should – they really should… (walks away with wistful look)

Then of course, there’s the time I really embarrassed myself with my OWN expense statement blunder!

— Darcy Perdu

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(Should companies just pay a per diem for travel so businesspeople can choose to skip meals and spend the money on something else? Any creative accounting stories to share? IS Shelly starting a meth lab?)

Cherry Popsicle

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff – In Fact, Don’t Sweat

So then…Jennifer Hall of Dancing in the Rain invites me to guest post for her series The View From Here where writers share their “unique perspective on life.”  My immediate thought is, “Holy Cow! Does Jennifer’s website have enough ROOM to print my voluminous LIFE philosophy? I could go on for 47 HOURS on this topic!”

But then I decide to focus on just one of my favorite perspectives that I learned from my parents, so click on over to Dancing in the Rain — and while you’re there, check out some of Jennifer’s awesome posts!

Dancing in the RainShe writes some really funny stuff over there, like:
The Romance is Still Alive
Kids do the Darndest Things
When Procrastination is a Good Thing 

Thanks for inviting me to guest post at your site, Jennifer!  — Darcy

SHOCK, AWE & OUTRAGE! Hilarious Mini-Melodrama on My Subway!

Shock, Awe & Outrage! A Hilarious Mini-Melodrama Enacted on My Local Subway!  #funny #subway #NYC #NewYork #humor

So then…I grab a seat, wedging myself between two other passengers on the subway car, as we barrel toward midtown Manhattan.

It’s not too crowded, so everyone has a seat as we calmly pass the time reading, avoiding eye contact, or staring blankly at the subway ads for plastic surgery and STDs.

Just then, a woman in her 50’s enters from the back of the subway car and quietly hands a pen to each passenger with a little note attached. She looks very sad as she works her way down the row of passengers.

The note says, “I am deaf. Please help me by buying this pen for $1. If you don’t want the pen, I will come back to pick it up. Thank you.”

Some people dig in their pockets and purses for a buck; others simply hold the pen until she comes back around for it.

She’s about halfway through collecting dollars or pens, when a conductor enters the back of the subway car and loudly announces: “Ladies and gentlemen, do NOT give this woman any money.”

Gasp! My head snaps up. Other passengers look startled! How heartless!

Is this subway employee going to tell us solicitations are against regulations? This poor deaf lady’s just trying to raise a little money!

The passengers stare at the conductor.

He continues, in a very cynical, world-weary tone, “This woman is not deaf. She has never been deaf. I have seen her speak and hear just as well as you and I. Do NOT give her any money.”

GASP! Now we all stare at the lady.

She whirls around and shouts at him in a garbled tone, “Howm day-ra you! I AMMN duffh! I AMMN duffh!”

DOUBLE GASP! She IS deaf!

How dare he accuse her of faking it! Just listen to her! She talks just like deaf people talk in movies!! Omigod, this conductor is cruel!

We all glare at the merciless conductor.

The conductor stares straight at her and says:

“If you’re deaf, how did you hear me say that BEHIND you?”

GASP GASP GASP!!!!

OMIGOD! Touché, conductor, touché!

Now our heads all whip toward the woman! Half of us are still clutching pens or dollars – mesmerized as this melodrama unfolds.

It’s like Wimbledon up in here with our heads whipping back and forth between the two players throwin’ down on the court of public opinion!

She scowls at him with an odious expression, turns on her heel, and storms out of the subway car into the next one in a blaze of fury!

He shakes his head wearily, then slowly follows behind her to thwart her next attempt.

As the subway door closes behind them, we all look at each other in awe.

We’re not sure whether we should applaud or not. It was like a mini-drama played out right before our eyes – a live street performance with a roller coaster of emotions encompassing pity, shock, anger, dismay, outrage – and finally the revelation!

Subway Theatre presents:
The Deceitful “Deaf” Lady
and the Crusading Conductor

Shows at 10:30, 2:45 and 4:15 daily
Admission: $1 (or not)

Damn, I love New York: every place, a stage – every person, a character – live theatre at its most authentic!

— Darcy Perdu

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(Heard of any similar cons or scams? Any interesting New York stories? Do tell!)

Justin Bieber Forbids Me to Do WHAT?

Justin Bieber Forbids Me to Do WHAT?  #funny #Bieber #concert #music #humor

So then…we head to the bar to slake our thirst. And thanks to the brutal Vegas heat, we’re truly in need of genuine hydration – so we buy 4 bottles of water in addition to our drink order.

It’s a bit rowdy at the arena bar – this is, after all, a Lady Gaga concert, so the concessions are packed with all my new “friends” – cool, crazy, costumed characters that they are.

My sister and I are in the line of customers, where there is much jostling – and if we’re here much longer, probably some fondling as well.

Finally my sister orders — and I see the bartender bring over 4 bottles of water, unscrew each cap, TOSS THE CAPS IN THE TRASH, and shove the uncapped bottles toward my sister.

What the hell?

My sister is not pleased. And now she and I are trying to pick up the uncapped sloshing water bottles and figure out how to carry them — along with all our other snacks and accessories.

“Can’t we have the caps?” I ask.

The bartender says, “No.”

“Why not?”

“Because of Justin Bieber,” the bartender says.

What!? Justin Bieber doesn’t want me to have caps on my water? This isn’t even a Justin Bieber concert! It’s a Lady Gaga concert!

I look around for Justin. Is he here? Is he watching me? Have I proven myself untrustworthy with bottle caps in the past?

I rack my brain. What’s he worried about? I’m not 3! I’m not gonna swallow it! Oh sure, I occasionally suck on a pen cap – or dangle a paper clip from my lip, but I’m not gonna accidentally ingest a bottle cap!

Maybe there’s a special promotion where you can win cash and prizes by looking at the underside of your bottle cap — and Justin wants to keep all those chances for himself!

Well, that’s just stingy, Justin. YOU have buckets o’ money – and I could really USE a new washer/dryer.

Clumsily, my sister and I make our way through the throngs of concert-goers, spilling water as we waddle through.

“Why doesn’t Justin want us to have bottle caps?” I ask, raising my voice above the din.

“The bartender says it’s because someone threw a bottle of water at Justin at a concert – so from now on, they have to remove all bottle caps!” says my sister.

“Are you KIDDING me?”

“Nope,” she says. “I guess they figure if someone throws an uncapped bottle, the water will spill out before it reaches him.”

Omigod, is Justin in THAT much danger of projectile bottles that we now have a RULE about it?

Then I recall something in the news awhile back — and sure enough, I find the headline from a Brazil concert: Justin Bieber Hit by Water Bottle Thrown by Fan and Storms Off Stage

(The article says the bottle is “thrown by a fan” — but I’d THINK a fan would be more likely to throw some roses or panties onstage. What’s the thought process there? “I really dig this singer – let me pelt him with this pint of liquid!” or maybe “I REALLY love this singer – someone hand me a fire hose!”)

But Justin’s not even here. This is a LADY GAGA concert!

If someone lobbed a bottle at Gaga…

She’d just bat it away with her microphone!

> at Madison Square Garden on October 27, 2008 in New York City.

Or bounce it off her shell bra!

JustinBieber-Gagashellbra 427

Or just swallow it whole!

JustinBieber-GagaMouth 427

But not Bieber.

One fan throws one bottle – and now, no one at concerts can have a bottle cap!

This is why we can’t have nice things, Justin.

It’s like that damn wannabe shoe bomber. One guy tries to sneak a bomb in his footwear – and now millions of passengers have to take their shoes off in airports around the globe every day. And have you SEEN what’s on the airport floor? I don’t know that guy’s name, but I curse him every time I have to take my shoes off (even when I’m not at TSA).

I almost feel bad for the Biebs. Here he is, trying to maintain a rep as a hip, edgy musical artist – and now this is what he’s known for? Kinda hurts the street cred, don’t ya think? “I love fast cars, fast women – I’m a straight-up gangsta — and oh yeah, by the way, please don’t fling a water bottle at my noggin.”

JustinBieber-GoofyLook 427

It’s a bit embarrassing. Does he really want to be known as the Agent of Social Change for de-weaponizing liquid refreshments?

Back of the Bus? “No!” retorted Rosa Parks.
Mistreatment of migrant farm workers? “No!” shouted Cesar Chavez.
Bottle caps at concerts? “No!” cried Justin Bieber.

It’s also a bit unfair. Someone throws a bottle at Justin and bottle caps are banned. But when the Biebs lobs eggs at his neighbor’s house, are eggs banned? Noooo. Although that WOULD have been pretty hilarious! Can you imagine looking for eggs at your grocery store and the clerk says, “Sorry, no more eggs.” (looks around nervously, then whispers:) “Because of Justin Bieber.”

So I guess I won’t worry that the bottle-cap-brouhaha is damaging the reputation of the egg-throwing, car-speeding, mop-bucket-urinating Bieber –

And perhaps there are other performers who also prompted the bottle cap ban at arenas –

But as I struggle to ensure my bottle doesn’t capsize during the concert, soaking the patrons seated in front of me — I vow to smuggle bottle caps of various sizes into all future concerts.

Go ahead, Security — pat me down! No drugs, no booze, no firearms – just a few plastic bottle caps secretly stashed in my bodacious bra!

— Darcy Perdu

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(Have you run into the Bottle Cap Ban? If YOU had the power to ban something, what would it be? Any odd rules you’ve encountered at work, school, or public places?)

RCOJ 429

THE RELUCTANT CAT OWNER’S JOURNAL

Cary Vaughn - Shirt Photo 380

Yep, that’s me, Darcy Perdu, rockin’ the awesome shirt for RCOJ (Reluctant Cat Owner’s Journal), the hilarious blog written by Cary Vaughn. Thank you, Cary, for your gift – yes, I DO look fabulous – and yes, I AM super skinny. Thanks for noticing.

If you’re not reading RCOJ yet, you should definitely check it out. Although Cary hated the idea of having animals in his house, he loves his animal-loving partner, so he agreed to take in a stray cat. Now they have five – count ‘em, FIVE – cats who rule the roost.

When Cary’s not creating hilarious and wholly impractical inventions to deal with the cats (i.e. Butt-Scooting and Cat-Feeding), he’s entertaining theatre-goers with his rendition of Sir Lancelot in Monty Python’s Spamalot — or a football player in Debbie Does Dallas: The Musical. (Yeah, you heard me – Debbie Does Dallas: The Musical.)

At RCOJ, Cary shares lots of funny adventures – but he also has a wonderful way of writing about ordinary everyday things that just cracks me up. He once wrote a whole blog post about watching a musical when he suddenly lost his Iphone between the seats that had me in stitches. You can also find him over at LeftyPop with some funny and thought-provoking posts.

Also — he’s the best damn lookin’ blogger on the internet.

Cary Vaughn - Handsome 429

And the goofiest.

Cary Vaughn - Goofy

I swear I didn’t beat Cary up for my RCOJ shirt. He gave it to me willingly. I swear!

Cary Vaugh - Beat Up (top of photo) 429

Go check out The Reluctant Cat Owner’s Journal.  Let him be your guilty pleasure!

My Coworker’s Compliment MIGHT Be a Bit Back-Handed…?

My Coworker's Compliment MIGHT Be Back-Handed
So then…I push open the doors to the hotel pool and see that some of my co-workers also took our boss’ advice to relax a bit before we need to be at the conference dinner tonight.

I’m only 22, so I can hardly believe my good fortune that I have a job that allows sipping cocktails poolside – I’m literally giddy!

As I enter the hotel pool area in my navy blue one-piece, one of my co-workers says, “Oh, that’s a pretty swimsuit, Darcy.”

I grin broadly, sort of surprised at the compliment because that co-worker happens to be a girl my age who hasn’t been very welcoming in the past. She comes from money and an Ivy League education and she’s always acted sort of snooty toward me and my small town background.

So I stop in front of her lounge chair and smile happily with a genuine, “Thanks, Cheryl!”

She smirks with a side glance to her friend and says, “Yeah, I remember it being pretty when I first saw it. It’s from last season, right?”

I am thunderstruck.

Not because she’s rude.

But because it just now hits me: swimsuits have SEASONS?

I shuffle off to a lounge chair in a daze. I know I’m not exactly sophisticated, but it never occurred to me that clothes have SEASONS. Is there an EXPIRATION date for clothing?

As I lay out my towel and lay down, I think back on what my mama taught me about fashion:

1) Trends and fads come and go, so buy “classics” that you can wear forever.
2) Buy your clothes a little loose so they can last a long time even when you grow.
3) Take good care of your clothes so you can pass them on to your younger siblings.
4) Style and color are secondary to a great sale price!

So our entire buying strategy was based on the hope that our clothes would last practically FOREVER! The concept that a perfectly-usable garment would only be good for one season, then tossed aside and replaced with a new garment was literally MIND-BOGGLING.

We chose dark colors, classic styles, and larger sizes so we could wear our clothes for years! We practically looked like cast members of Fiddler on the Roof!

We knew not to even ask for whatever the latest trend was – tye-dyed bell bottoms, hip huggers, that burgundy-wine color everyone was suddenly wearing one winter, or whatever.

My closet was basically filled with conservative clothes fit for a funeral parlor – with the occasional wacky item from the mark-down clearance bin.

For example, as a high schooler, I wore a bushy ORANGE winter coat. Not a hipster so-retro-it’s-cool “burnt umber” winter coat. It was a HIDEOUS OMIGOD-WHAT-THE-HELL-IS-SHE-WEARING FLAMING-ORANGE COAT.

I’d walk down the school hallway, weaving in and out of my classmates’ black and brown coats like I was a Neon Orange Traffic Cone!

But.it.was.on.sale. A BIG sale. And so I wore that coat proudly.

I rub suntan lotion on my arms and look over at Cheryl and the other girl giggling and gossiping. Their swimsuits look adorable but I literally have no concept if they’re from this season or last season or from 17 seasons ago. Who’s able to keep track of such things?

I put on my sunglasses and think back to an afternoon when I was about 10 years old, back in Louisiana. My Mom came into my room and laid out two shirts on the bed. They looked the same – two blue short-sleeve shirts. She said, “One of these cost $6.99 at Kmart and one of these cost $19.99 at Dillard’s Department Store. Can you guess which is which?”

I studied and studied those shirts. I touched the material. I compared the colors. But they were practically identical.

“I can’t tell the difference,” I said.

My Mom looked me straight in the eye and said, “Exactly!”

Lesson learned, my friend, lesson learned. Talk about a great visual!

And so our family of 7 shopped at Kmart, Target, and Wal-Mart – with the occasional splurge at Dillard’s Department Store for special events.

And we were happy! We weren’t worried if our clothes had “expired” or they weren’t “labelled” by a fancy designer. We were just delighted not to be walking around nekkid!

So I’m certainly not going to let Cheryl shame my “dated” swimsuit now. I sit up, grin at Cheryl and her pal, then proudly sashay my ass over to the bar to order a cocktail and chat up the hot bartender.

— Darcy Perdu

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(What did your mama teach you about clothes, shopping, and sales when you were a kid? Any mortifying garments you recall from your childhood or teen years? P.S. While typing this, I’m wearing expired clothing RIGHT NOW!)

EXTRA P.S. For another funny fashion faux pas, check out this VERY embarrassing thing I said to a co-worker! 

He Disagrees, But I Insist — So Of COURSE Disaster Ensues!

He Disagrees But I Insist, So Hilarious Disaster Follows 430x

READ the story below — or click Green Arrow below to HEAR the story!

So then…he snorts. “The ‘Park After Dark?’ That doesn’t make any sense,” says my husband David, skeptically.

“No, no,” I say. “This will be great! Instead of dragging the kids through the 90 degree heat of the day, we can visit the wild animal park at night, when it’s so much cooler!”

“Amma-mals?” asks toddler Chloe.

“Yes, honey, we’re going to see the animals,” I say.

David scoffs, “Are you sure we’ll ‘see’ them?”

“Yes, yes!” I say, laughing. “I just talked to the park on the phone. The guy said there’s lighting all over the place – and it’s so cool to visit at night!

David raises his eyebrow dubiously – but finally relents.

So we pack up Chloe, age 2; Tucker, age 5; the stroller and supplies, and drive the minivan 2 hours over to the wild animal park, just as darkness descends.

The kids are so excited.

The tickets are $50 each. David is so not excited. “Fifty bucks? Seriously?”

“Yes, it’s the special Park After Dark price.” I say. “It’s even more during the day!”

More?” he says. “Geez, what kind of animals do they have here? Unicorns and dragons?” he says.

“Dragons?” asks Tucker, wide-eyed.

“No, no,” I say quickly, shooting David a look. “No dragons, but lots of cool wild animals – rhinos, hippos, zebras, lions — you’ll love it!”

We board the caravan bus and there’s only one other family on board. And I could swear that husband exchanged an exasperated look with my husband. Like “you got roped into this too, huh?” There may have even been a shared rolling of the eyes.

As Mom the Cheerleader, I enthusiastically say, “Let’s grab seats by the windows, so we can see all the wild creatures!”

So we look out the windows — but the jungle foliage is thick; the lighting’s poor; and we can’t really see anything.

We look left, right, front, back — I’m desperate to see something to point out to the kids – an animal, a movement, a shape, a shadow…something.

David stares at me with the white-hot intensity of a thousand suns.

Chloe stands up on the seat next to me and presses her face against the window. “Where da amma-mals at?”

David swallows a guffaw. “Yeah, Darcy, ‘where dose amma-mals at?’”

I stare at him with the icy glare of a thousand glaciers.

“Excuse me, sir,” I say to the driver. “We’ve been riding around for half an hour and can’t really see anything. Where are the animals?”

“They’re sleeping,” he says.

“SLEEPING?” I ask.

“Yeah,” he says impatiently. “It’s DARK out.”

Oh my good God.

David practically chokes, he’s laughing so hard. He tries to suppress it so the kids don’t see, but he can’t help himself.

I shake the park map out in front of me. “Don’t worry, kids, we’ll find something fun to do!”

(But I notice that many of the attractions say “closed at night.”)

Finally! “Oh! Look, kids – there’s a Bird Sanctuary! It says you can feed the birds and they’ll land right on your hand!” I say brightly. “Let’s go there!”

So as soon as the “Sleeping” Animal Tour docks back at base camp, we head off to find the birds.

And thanks to the pitch black night, dim lighting, and poor path signage, we get lost.

The jungle air is thick with resentment.

We finally arrive at the Bird Sanctuary, which is packed with people. We buy little tiny paper cups filled with bird seed and stand there, holding our little cups up to the birds in the trees above us.

But they don’t land on us. They don’t really land on much of anyone. Every so often a bird lazily floats down.

Chloe’s running in circles, holding her cup as high as she can. “Come here, birdies! Come here, birdies!”

Tucker’s inspecting the bird feed in his cup and looks as if he might try it out himself.

I don’t get it. These birds are not flitting and flying like energetic little whirlwinds. These birds seem very lethargic — and disinterested in feeding.

“What’s wrong with these birds?” I ask one of the staff workers. “They’re not eating any of the food our kids are offering.”

“Oh, they’re full,” she says.

“FULL?!” I ask.

“Oh, yeah,” she says. “People have been feeding them all day long. By the time night comes, they’re stuffed.”

I squeeze my eyes closed tightly. Oh please, don’t let David have heard that part. Oh please. Where is he? Is he…is he…yep, he’s right behind me, biting his lip, grinning like a madman.

Oh for God’s sake. I whip out the map again, desperate for something to salvage this trip.

“Hey, look kids! There’s a Tribal Dance performance in the African outpost! Doesn’t that sound FUN?!” I say, infusing my voice with the enthusiasm of a thousand cheerleaders on crack cocaine.

We bundle Chloe in the stroller and grab Tucker’s hand and make haste to the outpost.

It’s much farther than we thought, and the directional signs lead us astray twice.

So I’m trying to push this frikkity-frik stroller over the ruts in this “authentic” dirt path, sweating – and swearing (under my breath) – through the massive jungle vegetation.

We’re walking forever. David’s ready to abandon ship.

I swear I think if a golf cart magically appeared, he’d immediately hop aboard and ride away, with a tender wave goodbye: “Farewell dear family, I loved you well and will think of you kindly when I’m back in air-conditioning chugging a cold beer.”

He’s just about to insist we turn back when we see another family coming toward us on the path.

“Do you know where the Tribal Dancers are?” I ask desperately.

“Yeah, they’re right through there,” they say, pointing behind them.

“Come on, kids! We’re almost there! Oh, oh, I think I hear them!” I say, picking up my pace.

All we see is jungle, but we hear the faint thrum of the drums and low rhythmic chanting, so we run toward the sound.

Just as we turn the bend, huffing and puffing, we spill into a big clearing with lots of people – and the announcer says, “So that concludes our last show of the night, folks! Hope you enjoyed it!”

Cue applause.

Cue laser daggers shooting out of David’s eyes into my cerebral cortex.

I want to slump into a sweaty ball of surrender. Just give myself up to the jungle gods right here and now. Let the baboons feast on my flesh; let the hyenas laugh at my folly.

I am done.

But I have two disgruntled kids and one fuming husband to transport back to the park exit and put an end to this disastrous night.

David doesn’t say a word on the trek back through the jungle, but I can hear his thoughts in his head as though they are screeching from a megaphone: ItoldyousoItoldyousoItoldyouso.

The longer we walk, the madder I get at the park guy on the phone who told me that this was such a great idea.

When we finally reach the exit, I say to David, “This is ridiculous! I’m gonna march right in that ticket office and demand our $200 back! We couldn’t see the animals – the birds were full – the dancers were too far away – there’s nothing to do at this stupid park at night!”

David shoots me a cynical look and crosses his arms. “Really? You think they’re gonna give you your money back?”

“Yes,” I say firmly. “Just you watch.”

I stomp into the ticket office, full of fire and brimstone. I rant and rave and rail.

Moments later, I emerge with an envelope.

“So,” he says, grinning. “What’d they give you?”

I hang my head and say, “Four free tickets for another night at Park After Dark.”

— Darcy Perdu

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(Yes, yes, this whole disastrous tale is true! Now it’s your turn – share your funny experiences with zoos, theme parks, and other family excursions. Any brilliant ideas YOU’VE had that your spouse was oh-so-right and you were oh-so-wrong? Do tell!)

Oh, Don’t Think I WON’T!

Oh, Don't Think I WON'T!
So then…we come barreling down the hall just as the gate agent is about to close the gangway door.

“Wait! Wait! Can we get on this flight?!” I shout.

My co-worker Teresa pleads, “Pleeeeeeeease?”

Our other 2 co-workers, Mike and Matt, are huffing and puffing so much they can’t even speak.

The gate agent looks us over – 4 young corporate kids, all in our late 20’s, with our briefcases and carry-ons hanging off our crumpled suits, as we wheeze and gasp after running through the airport.

Her face wavers between impatience to get the flight on its way – and a tiny bit of pity.

I pounce on that shred of emotion. “Oh please, we BEG of you! We RACED here after the convention, only to find out our flight was delayed cuz of snow and ice — so we booked a different flight back home, ran to THAT gate, only to find out THAT one was delayed too! So they booked us on THIS flight – but it took us FOREVER to run here from the LAST gate!”

Matt clutches his chest and leans against the wall, loosening his tie. (Not sure if he’s doing this for dramatic effect or if he’s really in distress, but it works!)

The gate agent says, “OK, OK, give me your boarding passes and get on the plane quickly.”

We hoot and holler and wave our boarding passes in the air. We scramble quickly down the gangway onto the airplane. A few people are still in the aisle, storing their bags and finding their seats.

“Thank God we made it!” says Teresa.

Mike and Matt high five each other. We’re all beaming.

Matt says, “We’re so lucky we didn’t get stranded at the airport.”

“Yeah,” I say. “But I really hope they serve dinner on this flight. Cuz it’s 5 hours long and we didn’t have time to buy anything in the airport.”

Mike looks stricken. “Dammit. None of us has food?”

We all shake our heads forlornly. We haven’t eaten since the lunch of sandwiches at the convention hall — and now it’s late night.

Teresa says, “Oh, I’m sure they’re gonna serve dinner on this flight!”

She smiles optimistically. I frown skeptically.

We find our seats, stow our bags, and buckle in.

Teresa’s next to me. The guys are in the row behind us.

Later, the flight attendant comes down the aisle, dispensing drinks and dropping a little bag of pretzels on each tray table.

“Will you be serving dinner soon?” I ask.

The attendant says, “There’s no dinner.”

Teresa nearly spits out her Coke. Matt and Mike behind us say loudly, “WHAT?”

“We have pretzels,” she says. “We had peanuts earlier today, but we’re all out now.”

“Omigod, seriously?” I ask. “THIS is it? This is ALL the food?”

“Yes.”

Teresa fumbles with the cards in the seat pocket and asks, “Can we BUY food? Do you have a snack menu or something? We’ll pay! We have MONEY!”

The attendant shakes her head.

Matt calls out, “Is she saying there’s no food?”

I answer loudly, “There are pretzels!” I turn back to the attendant and ask, “Could we please have extra pretzels? We’re starving!

“No, I’m sorry,” she says. “We’re running low. What with the flight delays and cancellations, the airport’s been a mess today — we weren’t able to restock before we left.” She moves on to the rows behind us, distributing the meager fare.

I stand up, lean over my seat back, and hold the packet in front of Matt and Mike.

“Did you guys hear that? THIS is it! THIS is our ENTIRE nutrition on this FIVE HOUR flight!!”

They start laughing and Teresa joins in.

“It’s NOT funny!” I say loudly, still waving my packet around. “I.am.starving! I could eat a horse! And all they give us is this puny packet of pretzels!? I tell you what! You better hope we don’t go down over the Andes, because I will not HESITATE to eat you sorry mofos!”

I plop down into my seat, in a huff, famished and frustrated.

Just then a hand quietly reaches over the aisle and slides a packet of pretzels onto my tray.

My head snaps to the left to see who the donor is – it’s a businessman, with an expression of trepidation.

I say, “Are you sure?”

He nods vigorously.

I nod respectfully, with hooded eyes, and whisper, “Thanks, bro. If we go down, I’ll remember this.”

— Darcy Perdu

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(Ever been so hungry on a flight that cannibalism was an actual consideration? How do you feel about so many airlines abandoning the free meals of yesteryear, but offering snacks and meals for MORE MONEY? Any funny flight delay/cancellation stories? Do tell!)
Oh, Don't Think I WON'T! P

My Business Outfit is Missing a LITTLE Something…

Funny - Slipping Stockings
So then…I pop open my suitcase to pull out my special outfit for the big client presentation on my four-day whirlwind trip to Hong Kong. I need to look my most professional for our clients and the executives at the Shenzhen manufacturing plant this morning.

I’ve brought a special black silk suit — and yes, even pearls and high heels. But when I open the brand new package of pantyhose, I discover that it actually contains…stockings.

You know, stockings. The kind that are just individual casings for the legs, that are supposed to clip into the special garter belt you wear around your waist. Only I didn’t bring a special garter belt. Because I don’t own one.

I only wear pantyhose. You know, the kind with legs connected into a nifty little casing for your butt and waist that you just pull up — and everything stays in place like it’s supposed to? Only I didn’t buy pantyhose. I bought stockings by mistake!

OK, no need to panic. I’m an intelligent woman. I’m staying in a sophisticated metropolis.

Surely I can solve this problem before meeting the client downstairs at 7:00 a.m.

I call the hotel operator. She says, “So sorry. Hotel gift shop not open until 9:00 a.m.”

I rifle through my suitcase. Two pairs of blue jeans. I had sent the business casual pants to the hotel dry cleaners yesterday.

I call the operator again. “So sorry. Hotel dry cleaner not open until 8:00 a.m.”

Back to the suitcase. Two pairs of black trouser socks that come mid-calf. I try on the black silk skirt, which comes mid-knee.

But maybe…if I can just pull down the skirt a bit…and stretch the socks up as far as they can go…and just sort of hunch through the day, maybe it will work. I look in the mirror. Uh…no.

OK, perhaps I’ll just wear the suit without pantyhose. How bad can that be? Yes, it’s January. Yes, it’s freezing. My legs are just a shade whiter than snow. And I haven’t shaved since Halloween. I look in the mirror. Uh…no.

OK, I know, I know! I can call my co-worker. He’s just down the hall. Perhaps he has some pantyhose. Maybe his wife accidentally packed some for him. Or maybe he just travels with pantyhose for his own personal reasons. Who am I to judge? (I decide it’s better not to know.)

Back to the suitcase. I pull on the stockings. They actually look great. I walk around the room. With each step, they slide down my thighs, closer to my ankles. If only I had something to keep them up. I rummage through the hotel bathroom amenities. Qtips, cotton, shower cap, mini nail file. Where’s MacGyver when you need him?

So that gives me a great idea. I call the front desk and ask if they happen to have pantyhose available for forgetful guests. “Pardon me?” she says.

“You know, like when guests forget toothpaste or hair dryers or whatnot, and you provide it for free? Well, I need pantyhose. Does the hotel provide complimentary pantyhose?”

“So sorry. We do not offer this to guests,” she replies.

“Oh. Um…well, do YOU have any pantyhose I could borrow? Or even a garter belt? Black would be best, but at this point, I’m pretty desper—”

Click.

OK, no problem. I can handle this. My eyes dart around the room frantically, looking for some device to keep the stockings safely mid-thigh. I see the desk, which gives me a brilliant idea.

I zip downstairs to the 24-hour hotel business center. Luckily, it’s deserted. I make a beeline for the complimentary office supplies and rummage through paperclips (too short to hook to my panties), glue (too messy), and staples (too painful).

Aha! Scotch Tape!
This Business Outfit Scotch Tape
I hike up my skirt as discreetly as possible and wrap the tape around the top of the stocking and my right thigh several times. I walk around. It seems to hold pretty well. I strap the other stocking to my left leg with layers of tape and I’m good to go. Excellent!

I sit through most of the journey to the factory in the Chinese countryside, so all is well. I alternate between smiling at my little secret – and worrying that it might be discovered. But I’m determined to be professional regardless.

As we tour the factory, I’m surrounded by the manufacturer’s executives (all men) as well as my client’s team (also all men). As I walk, I hear little crinkly noises as the layers of tape on each thigh rub against each other. I glance around to see if anyone else notices. My key buyer has a furrowed brow – but is that because he’s examining the factory’s material testing process – or because he’s thinking “What the hell’s going on under Darcy’s skirt?”

As we progress through the factory, I can feel the tape losing the adhesive battle. It makes a valiant effort, but it can only withstand gravitational forces for so long.

The stockings start to slide. I start to panic. I can’t even imagine the shock on my colleagues’ faces if my stockings and wads of tape suddenly drop to my ankles. I’d be mortified.

I quickly excuse myself to the ladies room, just as the left stocking stutters to a halt at knee level. I rip off the stockings and limp tape, stashing them in the trash can.

When I rejoin the group, the men practically have to shield their eyes from the bright white of my pale legs. No one mentions the missing stockings. I pretend to be calm and confident as my white bare limbs blind passersby.

To be candid, I’m mightily disappointed in the product quality of Scotch Tape. As I hobble through the rest of the tour, I consider sending them a strongly-worded complaint about their inferior adhesiveness in relation to the human thigh on a typical Chinese winter day.

— Darcy Perdu

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(Ever forget a crucial item on a business trip or vacation? Any wardrobe malfunctions or clever fixes? Share in the Comments Section!)

This Business Outfit P

GOLDEN SIDEBOOB AWARD
Meanwhile, funny Mike Regione from Joe Floggers sent me the Golden Sideboob Award, which was created by awesome Lizzi Rogers at Considerings as a crazy award for people brazen enough to post the award to their blog!

The Golden Sideboob

Of course, when you brag to your friends about receiving this award — instead of applauding, they’ll look befuddled and say, “Who sent you a Golden What?” Winners get to nominate the next winner — someone funny, bold, and brazen enough to post it, so I award the Golden Sideboob to Liesl Testwuide at Hairpin Turns Ahead. Congrats, Liesl! Add THIS beauty to your resume! — Darcy Perdu

GOLDEN SIDEBOOB AWARD
More good news! Funny Fran Fischer from Fishducky, Finally! also bestowed an award that my blog is Fish Ducky approved!  She says it’s almost as good as a Nobel Prize for Literature!  I’ll take it!  Thanks, Fran!
Fishducky

The Pilot I Almost EJECTED!

What NOT to Ask a Pilot - hilarious true tale of what the pilot told me 20,000 feet in the air #funny #airplane #travel #vacation #humor

So then…I enter the airplane with trepidation. I quickly glance at my preferred seating section by the emergency exit, but all those seats are taken!

My heart speeds up a bit. Anxiety looms.

Typically, I’m a nonchalant traveler, calmly criss-crossing the country. To me, turbulence is not terrifying – just annoying – especially if it spills my wine or makes my book too jumpy to read.

But a recent flight has shaken my confidence in the air travel industry as a whole – and, in fact, in the very concept of human flight. (That flight made me skittish as a cat on a hot tin roof — on meth.)

I sidestep passengers shoving their bags in the bins.

I trudge down the aisle, desperately seeking a seat near an exit, when suddenly I see him – A PILOT!

Sweet mother of Jesus! Sitting here in the passenger seats — a Southwest Airlines pilot in full uniform with distinguished white hair and a solid, reliable face.

I am so excited! This airline lets you sit wherever there’s an empty seat – and who better to sit next to on a plane than an EXPERIENCED PILOT? He can help me in an emergency – hell, he can even fly the plane!

I scramble over to him quickly. “Do you mind if I sit here?”

“Of course,” he says in a rich baritone voice, exuding confidence and reassurance. I am in love with him. He is 25 years older than me and possibly ill-suited to my temperament, but I don’t care, because if there is trouble, he will save my life and for that, I most surely owe him my undying devotion. (Key word: undying.)

After I settle in, I turn to him and say, “I hope you don’t mind my confiding that I’m a nervous flyer these days — and I feel safer sitting next to you, since you’re a pilot.”

(I want him to pat my hand, proclaim, “Don’t worry, my child, you are safe with me,” then stare straight ahead on high alert, prepared to handle the slightest jiggle or jump of the aircraft.)

But instead, he smiles and says, “Well, the key to being a good pilot is to have as many landings as you have take-offs.”

Huh?

“And in my 32 years of flying, I have to admit I did have one more take-off than landing.”

Huh?

“Back in ‘Nam, our chopper was taking heavy artillery ground fire, and we knew it was going down, so my co-pilot and I ejected, deployed our parachutes, and smashed down in a field – with only three broken bones between us.”

He smiles, self-satisfied, and waits for my congratulatory oohs and aahs.

But in my head, I’m thinking: Dude, we are on an airplane right now. We do not have parachutes! We are lucky if we get a pack of peanuts. We don’t even get pillows or thin scratchy blankets, with which to FASHION a parachute! Why the hell are you telling me this story?

But instead I say, “Oh, well, heh heh, I guess we’re lucky we won’t be encountering any heavy artillery on our way to LA.”

To which he replies, “Oh, there’s lots more stuff that can take a plane down other than artillery. One time, we were flying to Seattle, and suddenly the engine….”

I stare wide-eyed as he tells me a story of a near-miss in Seattle. Then he proceeds to tell me about every other mid-air mishap and dangerous take-off or landing he’s had – or heard about – in his entire 32-year career!

I keep trying to steer him away from this topic, but clearly he relishes these spine-tingling gems about missed maintenance checks, co-pilot error, disastrous weather impacts, flight crew hangovers, small cockpit fires, and the damage a 4-lb. bird can do to the engine of a 200,000-lb. plane!

It would be difficult enough to hear these stories if I were safely on the ground, in a bar somewhere, allowing the alcohol to dull the edges of these dreadful terrors.

But I’m hearing about all these airplane malfunctions and near-crashes while sitting ON an airplane, hurtling through space at 600 miles per hour!

As he speaks, I’m turning paler by the minute, trying desperately to change the subject – but also trying hard not to offend — since he is, after all, my appointed rescuer.

So I just keep consoling myself by repeating over and over in my head: But he’s alive — so he obviously survived all these calamities! And I will too!

In an effort to conclude the catalogue of horrors, I say brightly, “Well, those are amazing stories. But you survived them all! You lived to tell the tale!”

To which he replies, “Oh, but some pilots are not near so lucky. In fact, one time in ‘Nam, we had four choppers on the way to Da Nang…”

At this point, I want to stick hot pokers in my ears just to stop the flow of ghastly stories.

I am ready to jump off the plane myself right now just to escape HIM.

I can’t believe that I sought the sage counsel of a distinguished airline pilot about safe flying — only to be regaled with tale after tale of aviation catastrophes!

I clench every muscle in my body and sit, taut and terrified, for the remainder of the flight — desperately wishing for an EJECT button for my seat-mate!

— Darcy Perdu

Original Illustration for So Then Stories by Mary Chowdhury

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(Ever turn to someone for support and guidance – only to be freaked out even MORE?  Like a doctor who confirms your WebMD fears?  Tell your travel terror tales – or anti-reassurer stories below!)