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Marni and the Skymall

Up until a few months ago, I had two guest posts a week here. One from Billy Coffey and one from a guest blogger. Then again, I also posted seven days a week, which is just nuts. (For me, anyway.) But even though guest posts are no longer a regular feature here, I do enjoy having guest bloggers here, especially the likes of Matt Appling on Friday, and today, the lovely and talented Marni Lamb. Marns is a fellow Texas gal and I love her snarky, sassy, spunkiness. When she tweeted from an airplane about reading the Skymall and thinking of me, I was already thinking guest post.

Here’s my friend Marni and her adventures in Skymall:

I have a running “top ten” list in my head. It’s the top ten things I am most proud to have accomplished in my life. For example: marrying the man of my dreams, having 2 beautiful daughters, finishing my degree…and now, writing a guest post for the great Take me now, Lord, for I have peaked!

But I digress…

Last week found me taking a long, bumpy, but highly scenic, road trip from Dallas, Texas to Seattle, Washington. My husband (hereto referred to as Sainted One– because he drove the ENTIRE trip) and I drove my very pregnant sister, nervous brother-in-law, and their 3 dogs to their new home in Washington. Picture us, pulling up to the finest KOA campground/RV parks in Western America in our rented RV. We were high rolling in our luxe ride.

The other campers were green with envy when we pulled in—for obvious reasons. Yes, it was a sweet ride for a 2100 mile road trip. I liken it to being like dice in Yahtzee cup, because the ride was so smooth.

We saw beautiful mountains, shared funny moments and in general, it was a really neat trip. But thank goodness, we were able to fly home, instead of driving!

The plane was full, we were very tired, and our fellow passengers were all recently disembarked travelers from an Alaskan cruise ship (read: elderly) who were, shall we say, vocal and needy? (Side note: flight attendants do not get paid enough). At any rate, I wasn’t looking forward to the flight. However, I’m generally a positive person, so I plastered on my smile, locked in on my “fake it until you make it” attitude and boarded the plane with Sainted One.

I sat down in 24E (on the wing, because apparently it’s my God-given talent to ALWAYS book a flight where I sit on the wing) and prepared for the return trip home. I sat attentively through the pre-flight instructions, turned off my iPad and phone and waited patiently until I could log back on to the in-flight wireless and mindlessly distract myself on the internet until we landed at DFW.

But then it turned south. The in-flight wireless cost for us was going to be $32.95. Sainted One was already annoyed we paid $25 for our luggage to fly home, so he was not cottoning to paying for wireless. So great, now what was I going to do?

And then…there it was.


I was SO excited! I began reading and could practically hear Katdish snarking along with me as I turned the pages. In a brief moment of free internet, I even tweeted my excitement level. (Yes, I find happiness in the little things. I work in education, so my standards are low).

The first thing I noticed about Skymall is they assume most air travelers have 2 gut-wrenching afflictions: hair loss and too much hair. Oxymoronic, yes, but we all know Skymall is better than us, so don’t question it. I kept showing Sainted One all the products they had for hair re-growth, but he would point to his iPod and close his eyes and ignore me. Likely because the lady that cuts his hair uses the euphemism “high part” when talking to him about his receding hair line. Whatever. One day, he’ll ask me for hair growth help and he’ll be sorry he didn’t pay attention to me earlier.

As for the excessive hair, for you ladies, if you’re tired of that full beard you’ve been trying to ward off since early menopause has hit, might I refer you to page 41 and page 102 of the Summer 2011 issue? You’re welcome.

Another thing frequent air travelers clearly live with, are headaches. And really, why take Excedrin? That’s so old school. Instead, you should try the head relieving wrap. It’s only $49.95!

I think you could accomplish the same thing with a frozen wash rag, but what do I know?

For those of you who feel your headaches deserve more, there’s always the Migraine Magic Plus for $59.99. Think Terminator glasses, with magnets attached.

For the record, Excedrin is $8.99 at Walgreens. But it’s your call.

You know what else frequent air travelers battle? Germs! I’m a bit of a germaphobe myself…to the extent Katdish recommended I watch the TV show, Monk, because “he would complete me”. She was right. He does.

Have you ever been to a restaurant and thought “this silverware might not be clean”. Me too. And then I leave. But for those of you who don’t let that sort of thing get between you and your meal, there’s the Nano UV Disinfectant for only $99.99!

Scan this bad boy over your dirty eating utensils and voila’, 99.9% germ free! What a bargain.

Of course, sometimes the germs aren’t on your eating utensils. Sometimes it’s more sinister. Sometimes, the germs are in your running shoes! Fear not. For $99.99, you can eliminate those foot-odor germs with the shUVee Deodorizer.

Foot spray is for suckers. This is what you really need.

For those of you who have, what I like to call, “more money than sense”, this is how you can deodorize your shoes –the Nano-Silver Sanitizer.

And for only $299.99! It’s like they’re practically giving it away at that price.

Maybe you have real problems…not like those who battle germs (that apparently cause headaches and hair loss). Maybe your problems include to having packable wine glasses. I have literally lost count of how many romantic picnics Sainted One and I have gone on, only to have them ruined because I didn’t have packable wine glasses.

“Life’s too short to drink fine wine from paper cups” according to Skymall. I could not agree more. I’m busting out the brie, escargot and a nice ’79 Merlot and throwing myself a proper picnic. God bless you Skymall!

Well folks, this has been fun. But this laundry that piled up while I was on vacation, isn’t going to wash, dry and fold itself, so I guess I’ll have to put down my catalog now and get back to work. If any of you hear of a gadget capable of doing my laundry for me, give me a shout. In the meantime, I’m going to suggest that for a future issue of Skymall and see what they come up with.


To catch up with Marni’s comings and goings, visit her blog The Chronicles of Marnia, which she updates about 3 times a year (Snort), and follow her on the twitter at @marni71.

So, you’re going to be a dad…

During a recent game of Words with Friends, the following conversation took place with Ricky, aka Bob, aka Arthur, aka Ricky Bobby:

1357bob: Nice start.

Katdish10: I’m gonna beat you someday.

1357bob: Yes you will. Wanna write a guest post beforehand?

Katdish10: That was very subtle.

The rest of the conversation involved me asking him what he wanted me to write about and him telling me he was about to be a first time dad looking for some sound, deeply intellectual advice from me. Or something like that…

To find out what advice I have to offer for first time dads, follow me over to Ricky’s Blog.

You Bad Lady! (by Steph @ The Red Clay Diaries)

When I first decided to invite other bloggers to guest post here on Hey Look a Chicken, I began with my friends and cohorts from The Fellowship of the Traveling Smartypants, which I started because I had this great idea that a few of us would take turns guest posting on each other’s blogs, but that got complicated with scheduling and I’m pretty sure math was involved. How did I make the jump from rotating guest posts to a blog about nothing? I don’t know. But that’s not important right now…

To date, many of my friends have written guest posts for me already. Some more than one. But Steph, going to great lengths to prove that I am NOT the boss of her, has waited until now to send me a guest post. Was it worth waiting for? I think so, yes. But how could you go wrong with someone who writes a blog post entitled Beware the Ass Clown? I’m sure you see my point. Here’s her Oh-so-fancy and official Bio:

Writer, wife, traveler, mom, blogger, humorist, editor, Spanish-speaker, social media admin for John C Maxwell (@johncmaxwell).

And now, after the longest intro in the history of HLAC, here’s Steph:

“You bad lady! Let us do living!”

His voice carried from the front door of the bus as I made my way back to my seat. I don’t know why he was complaining. It’s not like I did what I wanted to: yank that whistle out of his mouth and ram it up his nose.

All I did was shoulder my way between him and his mark.

You know, I really like foreign travel. And I don’t think I’m an Ugly American. I don’t whine at the lack of cheeseburgers in kosher restaurants. I resist the impulse to wander in large groups down the middle of crowded sidewalks. I LIKE foreign languages and I KNOW how hard it is to learn one, so I never make fun of nationals’ attempts to speak English to me.

See? I’m mostly a delight. But I really can’t help it if I react badly to two groups of people encountered by tourists in some countries: street vendors and lechers.

Maybe it was my first visit to Mexico City. Or more specifically, my first ride on the subway there. To get even more specific, it was my first …um… contact with the local populace.

Without going into graphic detail, I’ll just say that Mexico City is the first city I’d ever heard of to have (and need) women-only subway cars during rush hour. After that first ride, I developed the following strategies for travel as a woman on (unisex) subway trains:

  1. Stand in a group, whenever possible. With all the females in the center, surrounded by the guys. Kind of like how water buffalo protect their young from hyenas.
  2. Failing #1, always find a wall. And stand against it. Facing the rest of the train. With arms crossed and a vicious look in your eye.
  3. When entering or exiting trains (or really walking through any crowded area), pay attention to your immediate surroundings. And carry a backpack, slung low. Swinging it violently and unpredictably.
  4. If contact is made, don’t even try to guess where it came from. Your stinkeye will be answered by leering – but blank – stares from each of the 15 men pressed up against you by the crowd.

By the end of six weeks there, I had the stinkeye and wall strategy down. And on my final train ride, I knew I’d perfected the backpack swing when the guy I “accidentally” hit actually said “OOF!” and stumbled backward.

My strategy for dealing with street vendors came out of a less violating experience. Unless you count being “taken” for a sarape as a violation.

(I didn’t actually ever buy a sarape. I just like saying it. SARAPE.)

Charging tourists double seems to be the locals’ entertainment in those souvenir markets. And it annoys me. What annoys me more is when they take advantage of Westerners’ general openness. Make eye contact and they descend like vultures.

So on that day in Israel when Whistle Man shoved a pennywhistle (that he was selling for MUCH MORE than a penny) under the nose of the nice older lady in our group, and she looked him in they eye, smiled sweetly, and said, “No, thank you,” I knew it was…

My Time to Shine.

With a mighty leap, I caught up. She was shuffling a little faster toward the bus, still smiling apologetically.

“Tweedle-eedle-eedle!” he blew the whistle in her ear. “Only ten shekels! You want for your kids?! They like! See? I have beads too! Three string for twenty shekels! Is good deal!”

It was after I elbowed him in the ribs, got between them, and said NO in his face with my best vicious expression that he called me a Bad Lady. But he let my sweet friend scramble onto the bus.

Personally, I think Mr. Whistle should be grateful that I wasn’t carrying a backpack.

Just sayin.


To read more from Stephanie Wetzel, visit her at The Red Clay Diaries and be one of her thousands of adoring followers on the twitter at @redclaydiaries.

If you give katdish a guest post…

image courtesy of

I’m guest posting elsewhere today:

The inspiration for this guest post is the process my sad, little ADD brain went through when Bridget first asked me to write a guest post. Also the second and third time she asked me…

To read the rest of my rambling diatribe, follow me over One Word at a Time, the blog of my lovely and talented friend, Bridget Chumbley.