I DON’T ALWAYS EAT UNTIL I CAN’T MOVE … WAIT, YES I DO!

The holiday season is probably the most divisive three months of the entire year. Sure, it’s a time to be thankful, and joyful, and giving, and terrified (you can get my full thoughts on Halloween’s place in the season HERE), but it’s also a time to pick a side and fight for it. No, I’m not talking about a political side, or a side of the dinner table, or a side of the family – those can be chosen at any time of the year. You don’t need pumpkins, dead turkeys, or cookies to do that to yourself.

Obviously I’m talking about when it’s acceptable to begin decorating for Christmas and playing some classic carols non-stop. In my experience, people tend to fall into one of these three categories:

  • Thanksgiving is a full on holiday and I don’t even get merry for Christmas until Black Friday
  • Thanksgiving is just a happy accident on the way to the best holiday of the year
  • All holidays are the same and should be treated equally

I’m not even going to touch that last category – you’re just wrong and that’s not true at all. Don’t be that person. Pick at least one to go all in for! Personally, I tend to fall into the middle category and if you’re with me, let’s drink some eggnog and play All I Want for Christmas is You on repeat. For everyone else, the ones in the first category in case you couldn’t keep up, I do not understand you at all. ‘You can’t skip Thanksgiving! It’s a time to be thankful and eat all of the food!’ – Thanksgiving lovers.

Mmkay … first of all, you should just be thankful like all of the time. If you need a holiday to remind you of that then it might be time to reevaluate your priorities. Yes, you get to eat … a lot. You know when else you can eat a lot though? THE ENTIRE CHRISTMAS SEASON! Which is 12 days long traditionally, 25 days if you’re Freeform, or year round if you’re like me so why do I want one day to eat when I can have multiple? I’m a big fan of eating (THAT’S NO SECRET), but Thanksgiving is just one day. 24 hours. That’s it. Nothing more. What is the appeal of that? 

Might I also point out that the Thanksgiving meal is shockingly similar to Christmas dinner. But without all the delicious cookies and holiday drinks. Makes no sense to me. I don’t need someone to tell me it’s ok to eat until my pants start to feel way too tight. I’m a grown adult, I can do that any day of the week. Don’t get me wrong, I love having those days off work and seeing my family. But it does bother me that both Thanksgiving and Black Friday are company holidays while only Christmas day is. Christmas Eve is just as big a deal. Corporate America never ceases to confuse me.

Anyways, to be clear, this is not a post complaining about Thanksgiving itself. It’s more of a general confusion around all the people who wait until the day after to begin celebrating Christmas. Can your spirit literally not handle double the joy and excitement? Why get excited for one holiday when you can be psyched up for two? Again, this is very simple math. 2 > 1. 12 > 1. 25 > 12 > 1. 365 > 25 > 12 > 1.

I have zero shame when it comes to Christmas. November 1 I take in my desk decorations and it’s a miracle I hold out until then because, if we’re honest, it’s never too early to be put in a hella amazing mood by looking at Christmas lights. It’s always a fun game to see how long after the New Year that my co-workers tolerate me keeping it up … my current record is February 8 and I think next year I’m going to beat that. Mostly since my main co-worker at the moment is my dog and she doesn’t care. Then it’s basically time to get stoked for that year’s Christmas so I don’t know why I even give in to peer pressure and take it down. I am a peacock, let me spread my wings and be merry!

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you love Christmas as much as I do, let’s debate who sings the best versions of each classic Christmas song. If you are a Thanksgiving turkey, then you may have your holiday, but come Black Friday, you better be jollier than Santa stealing cookies from random houses all over the world. Thanks for reading!


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SOME PEOPLE ARE JUST SOUR PATCH KIDS

Marketing South Patch Kids as candy is a straight up lie to all the poor, innocent, suckers of the world. How do I know? Well, for one, I am not a poor, innocent, sucker and only buy real candy (i.e. gummy bears and Swedish Fish). Side note: chocolate is not candy because it’s so amazing it’s in a class all its own. Feel free to @ me, I don’t care what you think because I’m right and you’re wrong. Yet, for some reason, those horrible bitter little children are “popular”. Let me help you out. According to Google, candy is defined as ‘a sweet food made with sugar or syrup combined with fruit, chocolate, or nuts’. I will admit though, that sometimes Google is not all knowing, so I took my search to the OG dictionary, and Merriam-Webster defines candy as ‘something that is pleasant or appealing in a light or frivolous way’.

Last time I checked, Sour Patch Kids are not sweet … initially, I know they supposedly sweeten up after destroying your taste buds with that awful sour punch, but I think that’s just your mouth returning to a normal palate. They also have nothing to do with fruit, chocolate, or nuts so not off to a good start here. Continuing down the candy definition, they are NOT pleasant OR appealing in a light and frivolous way (they’re sticky and heavy and gross).

I’m just now realizing, though, that the point of this post was not to rant about my major dislike of sour candies, really, the kids just fit best in the analogy. No, in fact it was to talk about how much I dislike people (real, live people, not candy people) that act like Sour Patch Kids. The ones who are sour at first and absolutely ruin your appetite for no reason. Like, I don’t know who peed in your Cheerios this morning, but I did not do whatever it is you’re upset about to you. I’m not some voodoo doctor stabbing your doll person and shouting out curses on you and your family. Believe it, or not, I have much, much, much better things to do with my life. These people are so sour it’s mind-numbing … literally. They don’t even know who they’re supposed to be angry with so they pick the first available person. Regardless of their role in the situation. 

Oh, you’re upset because Amazon’s HQ2 is moving into town? I got this free Amazon shirt at a conference, I don’t work for them – even if I did, you screaming at me (a random citizen) is not going to make its way up the corporate ladder and have the boss hogs up there decide to scrap the whole idea. I wouldn’t pass along your feedback, even if I did work for them. Why? Because you’re unpleasant, and I don’t like unpleasant things. It seems like you’re mad because the store is out of your favorite brand of laundry detergent? I am simply trying to do my grocery shopping. I don’t work here, don’t slam your cart into mine and demand I give you the laundry detergent – that’s not how this works. First come, first served. I owe you nothing. Complain to someone who cares like the fly on that wall over there.

My least favorite part of the live Sour Patch Kids, though, is when they all of a sudden turn sweet. It’s not subtle. It’s not fun. It’s sickly, and too much, and leaves a bad aftertaste. You just screamed at me until you were red in the face and now you want to bless me and my family and hope I have a good day? Well, ok, thank you for that, but it feels a little too late at this point if you know what I’m saying. I’ll hope your day gets better to the point where your blood pressure drops back into a healthy range. And I’ll hope that your face returns to a normal skin color and not one of a lobster. But other than that, I hope I never cross paths with you again. Long story short, people who act this way are sour, then sweet, and overall slightly childish so that makes them Sour Patch Kids … ugh.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who is a Sour Patch Kid, tell them to take a hike – they don’t belong in the candy aisle. Thanks for reading!


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WE NEED TO STOP TAKING UNWRAPPED CANDY FOR GRANTED

Think about this for a second: unwrapped candy. How does it make you feel? Angry, upset, annoyed, bleh, ugh, nothing? Those are all incorrect feelings. You should be feeling excited, joy, surprised yet intrigued, curious, pumped, ecstatic, overjoyed, filled with hope. Why? Um, because it’s candy. That comes unwrapped. Does your dessert life get any better than that? No, not at all! All of the tedious effort that was present before, has been eliminated from the equation. This is innovation and efficiency at its finest.

We all know that grocery shopping is a beautiful social experiment, and clearly highly suitable for JOB INTERVIEWS and first dates. If this is the first you’re hearing about this modern phenomena, welcome to the future of problem solving, creative thinking, and flexibility challenges to prove your worth. Grocery stores are kind of a hidden gem – there’s so much happening in those aisles. While each one has its place, this post is going to get laser focused on one aisle, specifically. The candy aisle. The most exciting, but also the most guilt-inducing, aisle in the whole store.

I don’t always travel down the candy aisle, but when I do, I end up with a cart full of sweets and the guilty look of a puppy who just chewed up your favorite pair of shoes. Self-control isn’t even part of my vocabulary. There’s just so many fun things to try! New M&M’s flavors, new Reese’s shapes, new Twizzlers flavors, new Hershey Kisses flavors, new Kit Kat flavors, you get the point. If no one ventured to try the new candies, they would all disappear off shelves forever. Which would truly be a tragedy. So I like to take it upon myself to support the lifecycle of whatever new concepts have appeared on shelves for the good of everyone.

Imagine if no one had taken a chance on unwrapped candy options. We would forever be stuck trying to peel those ridiculous Reese’s paper wrappers off the mini chocolate. Or have to trust that our Kit Kats, York Peppermint Patties, and Twix bars (despite their ridiculous feud over left and right sides – more on my Twix thoughts in THIS POST) had wrappers that weren’t going to do the most to protect its contents. Enter the best thing that has ever happened to sweet tooths worldwide. The removal of wrappers.

Why did we need wrappers in the first place? I get the King Size bars at the registers. Those are their own package and once opened, contain unwrapped candy. But why put a bunch of smaller versions of the same candy in a package where they were individually wrapped in another layer of defense against … what? Air particles? People’s thoughts? Who approved that? What a ridiculous workflow – open a package, select an item, open that item, then you can eat it. Nope. That’s too many steps. 

Thank goodness candy manufacturers leveled up and got smart. Save money on packaging and save time from package to mouth. There are zero losers in the new scenario. Plus, all the packages are now resealable too! What does this mean? You will no longer lose stray candies that venture too close to the edge of the bag without permission. Not that this feature is usually necessary, but if there are people out there who don’t eat the whole bag at once this could come in handy. Wow. How is everyone not losing their minds over this?! Pure genius. Less stress. Less obstacles to consumption. 

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this post and want to share it with them, that would be awesome. Sharing is caring, after all. Don’t forget to subscribe to get these in your inbox twice weekly and follow TRP on Twitter for frequent musings. Thanks for reading!


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DEAR TWIX: NOBODY CARES, STOP MAKING US PICK SIDES

We all know commercials. The ones that inconveniently interrupt your binge-watching session so that someone can profit. Is it the TV provider? I certainly hope not! My bill is high enough so if you’re getting commercial revenue in addition I would like a discount. In actuality, I think it’s mainly for the shows, or movies, or reality stars, or puppy bowl participants, to make money. Which, ok, on one hand this strategy makes sense. You spend millions of dollars per episode and that has to come from somewhere! I’ve never owned a million dollars and would happily work for a few hundred, so if it’s a payroll problem hit me up. On the other hand, though, we live in a modern age. An age where promotional consideration is everything. So, why can your promotional products not pay for what I’m watching? Apple is doing just fine, they can bankroll your movie if you opt for the iPhone look over Samsungs. 

Maybe I don’t know enough about how the screen world works. I will admit, these could be both accurate and incorrect assumptions at the same time. What a fun paradigm that is! Hypothetically, if you’re both wrong and right, are you actually wrong? Is right even a thing? Is it possible that two wrongs don’t make a right, but one wrong can? I have a million questions for the philosophers behind morals now. I believe I’ve found the loophole to life! Wasn’t where I thought this was going just a paragraph before, but wow! I’ve shocked myself and that doesn’t happen often.

Life lessons aside, commercials are a part of life. They mostly suck. Some commercials are absolute gold, though, and worthy of my time. The Snickers feed the world Super Bowl spot, for example. Progressive’s parental life coach is also on that list along with another premium insurance one – that, of course, would be GEICO’s “well, the squirrels are back in the attic. Your father says it’s personal this time” ad. When that first came out, I simply thought the tagline was excellent. Since then, however, my parents have become obsessed with the squirrels in their backyard. This is a true story. They drink coffee and watch the squirrels. If you’re in a conversation with one of them, and they see a squirrel in their peripheral, they’re no longer listening to you. It’s an experience. I’m sure it will be a whole post very soon.

I’ve just spent a lot of space, and mental energy, very off topic. Let’s circle back! The majority of commercials that grace our television, computer, phone, tablet, treadmill, bike, watch, etc. screens have no business being there. Limu Emu being one. What even is happening with the emu? Where did Doug find Limu Emu? How long have they been partners? How is the emu contributing to insurance, in any way? Yellow, why yellow? Why a car from the 60s? That was 60 years ago now, is the company doing that bad where they can’t afford a new model for their best agents to drive around in? I’ll stop hating on Liberty Mutual there. 

The ones that irk me the most, though, are the infamous Twix commercials. Twix used to be normal. I used to buy Twix candy. And then, someone, somewhere, on their team decided that division was the best way forward. Literally. Right vs. left. Left vs. right. I’ll just say what we’re all thinking: it’s the same thing! No differences exist. When you package all as right, you’re now lying to customers. Because, some of them have to be left. And vice versa. If you’re going to compete, against yourself might I point out, at least have some differences. Make one side caramel and one side peanut butter. One side milk chocolate and one side dark chocolate. One side a rectangle and one side a circle. Anything! 

Because it’s confusing to open a pack of Twix thinking there’s two different pieces of candy (since they’re different and you have to choose according to their marketing team) and finding out they’re simply the same. One is on the right and the other is on the left. If you flip the package 180 degrees, then the right is now left and left is now right. What even – I definitely have questions, but also I would just like it to stop. There’s enough separation in the world without Twix throwing their two cents into that pile. Was anyone buying into this scheme? How has it lasted so long? Moral of the post is, I rarely eat Twix anymore because it’s now a stressful experience. Like taking an AP English exam where all the multiple choice answers are based on your opinion and interpretation of the passage. Another day, another time.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this post and want to share it with them, that would be awesome. Sharing is caring, after all. Don’t forget to subscribe to get these in your inbox twice weekly and follow TRP on Twitter for frequent musings. Thanks for reading!


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THE LANGUAGE OF STARBUCKS

Languages have never been my strong suit, but there is one that I simply cannot understand no matter how many times I try. You probably guessed it. It, of course, is the Starbucks language of coffee. I’m not sure what class, or after school club, I missed in my education to pick up on this. How do people learn the little intricacies of their favorite orders? It’s not on the menu, believe me, I keep checking. It’s not on the website. It’s not on their commercials. It’s not on Google. If you don’t speak coffee, you better befriend a nice human who will teach you because otherwise you’ll be stuck standing at the front of the line looking like a deer in the headlights with angry, caffeine-deprived customers screaming at your back.

It’s a straight up clique. An original form of social distancing for those who haven’t proven their worth by passing the challenge of ordering a drink from the menu and then proceeding to change everything about it. Personally, I find the drive-through lines comical because that is way slower than waiting in the store line. You have to try and explain your custom creation through the highly efficient outdoor microphone. You know, the ones that pick up about a third of what you say. Then you get to play the ever fun phone tag, or microphone tag in this case, of you placing an order, the employee repeating it, you correcting it (because heaven forbid you get two pumps of caramel when you specified twenty), the employee repeating it again, you correcting it … again (because you asked for pumpkin spice not light ice), the employee getting a bit frustrated on round 3, you getting irritated over having to continue to repeat your daily order (how do they not have this memorized by now, all the money you’ve spent there?!), etc.

Rant over, I apologize for all the die-hard Starbucks fans in the world. What do you call yourselves? Starbucksers? Star-Warriors? Starbuck Chucks? Straight up Stars? SBean? Estarbucksso? Now that is a winner! I should trademark it, you are all welcome. Don’t say I never did anything nice for you. Judge you? Yes. Mock you? Definitely. Blog about you? Certainly. But alas, I have given your band of minions a catchphrase.

I understand the concept of customization in food. If you’re paying for it, it better be everything you hoped for and more. What’s the best way to do that? Make it your own! Most places have found a balance – a diverse menu that lets you make slight adjustments based on dining preferences. Burgers without ketchup, extra cheese on the nachos, double the oreos in the milkshake, re-heating the fries so they’re toasty by the time you get to them, combination of half lemonade and half tea, etc. Minor adjustments that don’t impact the overall cooking process. It is but a blip on the cook’s radar.

Starbucks has adopted the opposite mentality it seems. Create a menu, train employees how to make the small amount of available drinks, then allow customers to run wild with suggestions. Completely ignoring what people at corporate have deemed current feasible options. How this is a sustainable business model stymies me … oh, wait, it’s because they cater to both the 1% and the 99% all at once. In other words, the rarely seen 100%. Price: 1% model, hands down. Coffee drinkers: well there’s the 99-ers. It’s fascinating. Why even bother creating a menu? Why spend money and time and energy and sanity constructing beverages that people will look at and go, it’s fine and all, but completely change the recipe and I’ll drink it? 

You order a chocolate chip frappuccino, sans chocolate chips, without milk, zero sugar, and instead of espresso a black coffee pour over. Pretty close. You order a vanilla latte, but skinny edition sans flavor, additives, anything besides water, and low-fat whipped cream. You order a caramel macchiato, but with ten pumps of chocolate, just a quarter pump of caramel, milk steamed at exactly 152.5 degrees for slight froth, but not too much, and a whipped cream. I don’t even know what I’m saying but these are all things I’ve heard while waiting in line for my cake pop. Honestly, I don’t care – estarbuckssos, you do you. What I do care about, is having my order become unnecessarily complicated because the employees forget normal words like water. I have to order liquid, pulled from the coldest, purest creeks in Chile with ice, hand carved by farmers in the Swiss Alps. And, of course, a perfectly moist, aerated, sugar dough covered with the finest colors at the end of the Lucky Charms rainbow and topped with tiny globes of crunch.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this post and want to share it with them, that would be awesome. Sharing is caring, after all. Don’t forget to subscribe to get these in your inbox twice weekly and follow TRP on Twitter for frequent musings. Thanks for reading!


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ALL OF MY THOUGHTS WAITING IN THE CHICK-FIL-A DRIVE-THRU LINE

Like a good Southerner, I understand that Chick-fil-A is part of the food pyramid. Not the whole base, but the second biggest tier for sure. Combined, of course, with Bojangles’ and their legendary sweet tea. In essence, people living south of Virginia are 50% chicken, 10% sweet tea, and 10% seasoned fries. The remaining 30% is gravy, banana pudding, and mac n’ cheese #math.

Since our sustenance relies heavily on the big red C, it’s imperative that I make regular appearances. Except on Sundays because the owners are clearly good southern christians and leave one day a week for home cooked meals at Grandma’s house. Unfortunately, I am not the only one living with this gratitude mindset. For all of the genius that is the CFA kitchen, their parking lot layouts leave a lot to be desired. Specifically the drive-thru portion of the design. Everyone, and their mothers, know that there is never a dead period at CFA. Everyone except the car space architects apparently.

It does not matter what time of day you get a hankering for waffle fries and magical chicken, there will be a full drive-thru line. 3:45PM on a Tuesday? Packed. 11:15AM on a Thursday? Can’t even get in the parking lot. Anytime before 10:30AM? Forget it! People will fight to get their Chick-n-Minis before the breakfast menu shuts down. They are also the only restaurant I know with an all day lunch rush. How is that even possible?! How is the whole world eating both an early, on time, and late lunch every day of the week every week of the year? That’s not possible. 

I’m sure we’ve all waited in a long drive-thru line before and been super thrilled about watching our gas efficiency rating drop consistently and trying to communicate with the employee through the high quality speaker system. How many times have you waited in a double drive-thru line? I don’t mean the supposedly more efficient double lane options. No, no. I mean the double line that occurs in the same way that you would draw a spiral. The drive-thru line is full and wraps all the way around the building. Um, what? Yes, you start in line near the speaker to order … but are the second to third layer of the circle. Is there anything more soul crushing when you’re hungry? No.

So clearly, as you can imagine, this line does not fall into the definition of fast food. It’s a slow burner. And time with your thoughts is a fun place to be. Well, fun may not be the right adjective. It’s an interesting place to be. My hungry thoughts are not on the same reading level as my well-fed thoughts. They get weird, they get abstract, they get confusing, they get twisted in circles (like the line I’m sitting in). It’s a black hole – one that I’m going to throw you into so you, too, can ponder these existential moments in my Chick-Fil-A waiting life:

  • Who taught the cows to spell? They didn’t do a good job
  • Who decided that the font should be a backwards foggy mirror attempt at writing?
  • Are CFA employees allowed to eat beef while at the office?
  • Does part of an employee’s non-compete contain information about dietary restrictions?
  • When will an employee be allowed to eat beef again?
  • Are all catered meals at corporate from CFA?
  • Has anyone ever pulled a prank and ordered Wendy’s or McDonald’s on “accident”?
  • Why was the chicken salad sandwich removed from the menu?
  • Why is there no option to supersize a meal? It could be the Fox option, get it
  • Is there a reason why sandwiches don’t come with a normal amount of pickles? What is so significant about two?
  • Is it a coincidence that the sun is always shining when I’m at CFA? No, it’s a sign from the heavens to eat mor chikin! (Side question: how did Google know to autocorrect that to the CFA version?! My mind just exploded)
  • Why were the color choices not orange? Like, you know, a chicken
  • How have I not moved at all?
  • If I use the app and place a mobile order while in the drive-thru, will I get my food faster? Spoiler: yes
  • Why is the peach milkshake not a year round treat? That’s the best option
  • Why do the cookies taste better when they’re catered?
  • How many times can an employee say ‘my pleasure’ before they explode?
  • How rapidly can I repeatedly say ‘thank you’ to test this out?
  • If the employees are taking my order, what is the point of moving through the line? Can they not also bring me the food?
  • Why is every parking lot so small? And tight? Neither is conducive for heavy drive-thru traffic
  • How many accidents happen each year in CFA parking lots? An acchickdent lol
  • Is there any way we could get a cow fence around the buildings? A normal fence with giant cutouts of the billboard cows? For full branding efforts
  • Do the billboard cows have names? If so, what are they?
  • How many free sandwiches are given away on Cow Appreciation Day?
  • Why don’t I own a full cow costume like a lot of the people here? Why do so many people own full cow costumes?
  • What if I had grown up in the North and not known about the mouth party that is CFA? The horror
  • How am I only one car closer to the goal?!

That feels like a sufficient share. Feel free to traverse that thought train at your own pace. Dive deeper into your feelings if you need to. Don’t if your care level for these questions is negative. You do you, but whatever path you decide, it’s better with a Chick-Fil-A sandwich and waffle fries. What drive-thru thoughts do you have while waiting to relieve the hangriness?

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this post and want to share it with them, that would be awesome. Sharing is caring, after all. Don’t forget to subscribe to get these in your inbox twice weekly and follow TRP on Twitter for frequent musings. Thanks for reading!


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WHY DO I WORK OUT? TO EAT MORE…OBVIOUSLY

Working out is an experience, not really sure how else to put that. It can be super intimidating because of the old-schoolers who still believe in the NO PAIN, NO GAIN mentality despite all of the research out there proving otherwise. Those people need to go somewhere else, preferably not at my gym. Maybe try some backyard “challenge” course your buddy built himself? Or, I don’t know, Crossfit? Better yet, create your own little niche franchise because we definitely are NOT oversaturated there yet.

If you’ve ever been to the gym, you’ve most likely realized the great divide that exists. Gymism, as I like to refer to it. There’s the weights area and then there’s the cardio section. And would you believe that those areas house very, very, very different kinds of exercisers?! Well, even if you don’t believe me it’s the truth so jump on board sailor. I can’t forget about the game courts where all the kids get stored while their parents suffer upstairs, but that’s more of a happy accident than an actual, conscious exclusion.

I’m all for staying in your lane in certain areas (online dating, though, am I right?!), but at the gym I like to switch it up. Balance is key in any routine – diet and exercise, strength and cardio. Listen, if you missed the title of this post, I hate to spoil it in the middle but it is most certainly NOT about balancing your diet. However, it’s hard to do that when a wall of literal human Hulks are blocking the free weights. On the flip side, it’s hard for these unnecessarily ripped humans to fit within the treadmill arms and do anything less than an hour-long intensive sprint workout sans judgement.

So what do you do? Pick a side forever and either be jacked or toned? Be destined to run endless miles or do endless curls? No! I would have thought as my reader base you’d be slightly more creative than this! Forget the gym and all their judgement (and their monthly payments). Buy a good pair of running shoes, get a handful of weights and use the most powerful tool anyone on Earth has – the Internet.

Anywho, we’ve gotten over the workout portion of this post. Step 1 (in case it was unclear): workout. Step 2: eat like a wrestler who just came off a weigh-in and has 24 hours to gain all the lost weight back. Can we take a quick detour? Wrestlers…just why? What is appealing? You have to run in FULL SWEATS and frequently fast to drop a bunch of weight quickly just so you can stuff your face to gain it back. Then, because that might sound pleasant to some, you put on what can only best be described as the male bikini, and have very intimate contact with another person in public. While getting aggressively punched, put in uncomfortable positions, etc. Who invented this sport? No, more importantly, how is it still popular?! Personally, I don’t see the appeal in any of the above but maybe I’m the odd one here.

Alright, so the best part of working out is obviously getting to eat afterwards. And what do you get to eat? Whatever the hell you want! You freaking earned that! Did you do strength? Earned it! Did you go for a run (distance irrelevant)? Definitely earned it! Did you walk up the stairs today (number of stairs irrelevant)? You, my friend, earned it! Did you put all of the grocery bags on one arm to just take one trip in? Yes, that also counts! Earning it is easy, why don’t more people participate in this?!

My point here is that I may have an unhealthy obsession with food. Hmmm that’s interesting and also not something I want to press into with my anonymous Internet fam so…my (new) main point is this: TREAT YOURSELF! If I did a workout, then denied myself the third slice of cake, what was even the purpose of working out?! Pretty sure I heard that calories after a workout don’t count. Could have come from my own head, but either way that sounds pretty freaking great to me. Dieticians everywhere are melting at this, I’m sure. The actual health nuts may be having mini-crises but I do not care. Living my best life…after my workout clearly because the build up is honestly something I would prefer to do without.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who also believes that food is the sole motivation for physical activity then please share this with them! Maybe we can start some sort of support group for surviving the workout portion of the equation. Thanks for reading!


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CINCO DE DRINKO: ANOTHER UNOFFICIAL HOLIDAY FOR DAYTIME DRINKING

The start of May is always a pretty great time of year. January resolutions are long gone so we can all stop trying to fake like we’re changing our lives and giving up sweets. February was but a blip of time that we forgot before it was even over. March Madness kept our stress levels high and our trash talking game on point. Well … in a normal year anyways. This past March was a bunch of pre-Spring weather and learning new words and terms like social distancing, coronavirus, cancelled, closed indefinitely, stay at home, restricted travel, free government money with no strings attached, etc. Then of course April came with its showers so now we have May flowers. Whoop whoop!

May comes in like a tank with the festivities. First, you bring out your inner wookie and deadly lightsaber skills with Star Wars day. Most people love May the Fourth because it’s simply just fun to say. May the Fourth be with you. With you, May the Fourth be – for all of you who, like me, find Yoda to be their Star Wars spirit animal. Baby Yoda by the way, can we just pause for a second and revel in what a gift to television sets everywhere that character is. Just when I thought I couldn’t love Yoda anymore I got him in child form! Kind of like in Finding Dory where Pixar gave us Baby Dory – oh my goodness her little eyes! Same with Baby Yoda. Maybe they just take away age lines and increase eye size to be 50-75% of the face? Whatever the science behind the youngerization of characters, I am here for it! And, to be honest, there are several characters that could use the baby makeover. A few that come to mind immediately:

  • Chewbacca (from Star Wars)
  • Cruella de Vil (from 101 Dalmations)
  • Mickey Mouse (from everything Disney)
  • Buzz Lightyear (from Toy Story)
  • Beast (from Beauty & The Beast)
  • Baloo (from The Jungle Book)
  • Roz (from Monsters Inc.)
  • Bruce (from Finding Nemo)

Before I spend the rest of this post throwing ideas into the universe for baby everything, let us move on. In the hangover from Star Wars day, we get America’s third unofficial daytime drinking holiday of the year (fourth if you’re single) – Cinco de Mayo! Cinco de Drinko if you’re a cool kid like my friends and I. Or if you only speak Spanglish because commiting to an entire language was part of a resolution that is but a fleeting thought from the B.C. era. Before Coronavirus that is. Now you have more important things to do like figure out how to spend endless hours at home with the same human beings, and/or animals day after day after day after day. 

For all the nonsense 2020 has thrown our way, it at least gave us Cinco de Drinko on Taco Tuesday so maybe not all hope is lost. Endless tacos and tequila! But for your takeout pleasure so think about how much you normally consume and triple it, just to be safe. Then you don’t have to figure out how to successfully order another round from a delivery driver while attempting not to fall off the couch. According to Urban Dictionary, Corona is the (un)official beer of this very young adult / quarter life crisis holiday. I am willing to wager that is not going to be the case for this year, but alas I have been wrong once or twice before.

To recap, or in case you genuinely don’t know what the other drinking holidays are, you start the year strong with New Year’s. Because why not ruin the first day of a new year with a killer hangover? If you happen to not like your date, or are self-partnered, you probably cruised into Valentine’s Day with something stronger than grape juice in that glass. Of course, the greenest day of the year pops up after love has ended since you might as well save the planet while you’re infatuated, or in need of a new project. Not that kind of green though – did you really think of Earth Day as a drinking holiday?! I question your judgement. Water, sure. Alcohol, probably not so much. It’s St. Patrick’s Day of course! So now you’re 25% through your year and 75% of it is a bit hazy. April is your chance to recover before May blasts onto the scene leading into vacation season, pumpkin season, and of course, holiday season.

What the heck else does May have, though? You may be wondering. Oh, you know, it’s also casually Mother’s Day, Memorial Day, National Moscato Day, National Dance like a Chicken Day, National Wine Day, graduation season, and it’s also prime wedding season (probably because of the flowers that the showers brought us). I think the question you should be asking is what the heck else DOESN’T May have?

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this and want to share it with them, that would seriously mean a lot to me. I’m so grateful to all the current readers and subscribers. If you want to get these in your inbox twice weekly don’t forget to subscribe. Thanks for reading!


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GROCERY STORES: FUN, OR NAH?

What’s the best time of day? Food time, obviously, so for me basically every hour is amazing. It’s the little things that get you through the workday and I’m not ashamed to excuse myself from meetings to use the “restroom” – know what I mean? In case you’re not smelling what I’m cooking, it’s code for the kitchen and some sort of snack, meal or dessert. I don’t have a medical issue where all the important things in my life get put on hold for a quick trip to the bathroom like the drug commercial makes it seem. 

Speaking of drugs (the legal kind), what is up with the side effects? Everything is deadly (you can read all about my pharmaceutical questions in THIS POST), which, now that I think about it makes sense because I’m basically dead inside if I spend my life in a bathroom stall and not doing fun things, like walking around a grocery store. Well I, for one, find it fun. How else would I know that Cheez-Its released a cheesier version of their product? I literally did not know that was possible. I’m also disappointed that they weren’t maximizing cheesiness from the beginning.

Or how would I be able to feel what type of bread was calling my name for the week? There are way too many bread options and, like a good supporter of the food industry, I feel a need to try them all. But it would be ok if like 80% of the choices disappeared. Would anyone even know? What even is the difference between whole wheat whole grain and enriched whole wheat whole grain? Do I need 5 grains, 7 grains, or 12 grains? How many grains are too many grains? I thought oatmeal was much smaller and potatoes rounder, yet both are bread so which one is the lie?

Better yet, how would I be able to spend the entire trip through the aisles wondering if I’m going to die sooner because I bought regular, drug-created, produce and not the organic version like a straight muggle? If you haven’t figured this out from my previous posts, I actually enjoy these kinds of questions. Makes me feel like I’m really maximizing my life and fine-tuning my attention to detail. Normal people, however, find these decisions stressful and consuming (so I’ve been told). These people also see grocery shopping as more of a chore and not necessarily a hobby. Luckily, smart people figured out that grocery delivery and pick up services were what the first-world was missing. And all the introverts rejoiced along with actual adults who have much less time and energy than me to spend on things like deciding if the current bag of Mystery Oreo’s in my hand will be yet a different flavor than the other seven bags in my pantry.

Regardless of where you fall on the love / hate relationship with the grocery store, I think we can all agree that it’s a social experiment. If I was a hiring manager (which, shockingly, I am not), I would take all my candidates to the nearest Whole Foods to get a live presentation of how they would react to different situations at work. Specifically, you can easily tell several key traits about someone based on their shopping habits. Problem solving, resourcefulness, collaboration, navigation (also known as public relations), and expectation management (or marketing as it goes by in the streets).

Let’s break this down:

  • Problem Solving
    • When the store is out of hamburger buns, but you signed up to bring hamburgers (and all necessary supplies) to the cookout tonight, what do you do instead?
  • Resourcefulness
    • Despite what I can only believe to be a mediocre, at best, directional effort, the yeast is nowhere to be found. How do you find it?
  • Collaboration
    • When you see someone accidentally knock a bag of chips off the shelf, what do you do?
    • Alternatively, when checking out, what kind of customer are you? Load the belt and wait, or help bag?
  • Navigation / PR
    • As you go to turn down the aisle for your last item, you notice a giant traffic jam of carts and other shoppers. How do you handle this unexpected twist to finish your trip without wrecking havoc?
  • Expectation Management / Marketing
    • When the store said that they had the newest cereal item (that most certainly does NOT pair well with milk – the candy cereals need to disappear) but they don’t even have a place on the shelf for it and now your children are upset and about to make a scene, what do you tell them?

Feel free to use that tactic in your future interviews. Better yet, if you do, I would love to hear about it! If you want to win this social experiment, when you’re interviewing for a job and they ask if you have any questions, see if you can flip this around and see what kind of leaders they are.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this and want to share it with them, that would seriously mean a lot to me. I’m so grateful to all the current readers and subscribers – if you want to get these in your inbox twice weekly don’t forget to subscribe. Thanks for reading!


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I WINE, YOU WINE, WE ALL WINE FOR A REFILL

I’m not a scientist, but I’m pretty sure that wine is what fuels the Earth’s core and keeps us happily rotating around a bright, hot ball people call the Sun. After all, sunlight helps plants grow, such as a vine. Which, last time I checked, looks a lot like a plant. It has a brown stick looking thing and some green leaves. Green leaves that also happen to produce juicy, delicious little orbs in multiple colors. If you carefully handle the vine, retrieve the orbs of goodness, gently place them in a barrel, then smash them all up it gives us the syrup of the sun: wine. Seems to me like a perfect lifecycle. In summary: wine makes the Earth go around the Sun, who in return for our never-ending presence, abundantly continues to produce the ingredients. Science.

The Sun is surprisingly human in this theory. It doesn’t want to be alone. Relatable? Yes. If you thought no, might I recommend making some friends? Nobody wants to be alone. So like a typical human, the Sun buys happiness and friendship with grapes…for wine. In case you forgot what this post was about. Relatable? Meh, I personally am not rich enough to buy my entourage so strangely enough they just like me. The Sun is a big star though so we probably live totally separate lives. It has over a million Twitter followers. Wait, sorry, that’s a London newspaper. The REAL Sun account only casually has like 13.5K, but follows NOBODY. Not sure how the other planets feel about this…seems like we could be nearing a revolt. Where everyone breaks off to find a better leader. One who follows back. Like a real friend. Although we have established the Sun simply buys planets with alcohol so I guess it’s not super genuine.

Coming back in from the black hole I just fell into, wine! If you don’t like wine, first of all you’re a liar. More importantly, now is a good time to start, don’t let the experts scare you off. Second, I don’t trust you. If I can’t drink two entire bottles of wine with you (one for each of us because I have restraint obviously) then how can I tell you any of my secrets. You’ll remember all of them. Mmm, nope sorry that would be two bottles of something either clear or brown. 

With wine, everything just sounds less serious and adult-y. Plus, wine comes in fun, approachable, warm colors: red, pink, and white. The colors of love. I mean, what else do you want?! You can literally drink love. Feeling stressed? Drink some love and feel better. Going through a bad breakup? Get some love in you. Lost your job? Pour a little love on those tears. I’m calling BS on anyone who doesn’t want more love in their life. So, in other words, everyone is a wine drinker. Even if you’re a closeted wine drinker. When you’re ready to admit that to the world, we will welcome you with open arms and a bottle of wine. 

Now, I will be the first to admit that I am no wine connoisseur. I could not tell you how old it is, where it came from, what the flavor palette consists of, which foods go best with it, etc. Mostly because I don’t care. I have simple criteria:

  1. Is there alcohol in it?
  2. Do I like the way it tastes?
  3. Can I find it on the bottom few shelves at the grocery store?

Apparently there are five steps to drinking wine (five!) and only one actually involves the drinking portion (or, the important part). If you are a well-seasoned wine drinker, then you can skip over this section. For all the blooming grape leaves, here are the recommended steps to enjoying your glass:

  1. See
  2. Swirl
  3. Sniff
  4. Sip
  5. Savor

That seems like four unnecessary actions here. Can I taste the hint of oak in there? No, because, believe it or not, I don’t go around tasting different types of tree bark. Sorry, not sorry that I prefer human food. There’s actually a term for this: barkstripper. I have to be honest, that does NOT sound like an innocent animal that gets its nutritional needs from a tree trunk. If you’re curious, there are seven types of barkstrippers:

  • Tree squirrels – makes sense
  • Beavers – also makes sense
  • Black bears – now I’m lost, just eat the honey
  • Field mice – are they strong enough to strip the bark?
  • Mountain beavers – this is oddly specific
  • Porcupines – I didn’t really think of these are needing to eat, more of just predators, but maybe that’s what the spikes are made of
  • Rabbits – I thought they ate vegetables…

I’m so curious now about what exactly the barkstrippers gain from eating wood. Is it an essential vitamin or mineral? Surely it’s not fat, carbs, or protein? Do they prefer certain tree types over others? Are certain trees the “upscale” bark and do those come at a higher price? Just why? There seems to be a lot of other options available.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know a wine drinker, pass this along so they can appreciate all the wine love. If you know someone who doesn’t (publicly) drink wine, share this so they can stop being ashamed. Thanks for reading!


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