Monday, December 8, 2014

Flame Bait

Definition taken from Urban Dictionary: 

"1) Flame bait is a message posted to a public Internet discussion group, such as a forum, newsgroup or mailing list, with the intent of provoking an angry response (a "flame") or argument over a topic the "troll" (original poster provoking angry response) often has no real interest in, and finds humour, or entertainment in reactions.

2) Flame bait can be a person unfamiliar with a certain discussion/topic on an internet discussion group, possibly saying things that would provoke an angry, teasing, or overall negative response.

ex. KingR3aper: Starcraft II is going to suck. It is going to be the same thing as Starcraft I with new graphics. You're all losers."

I thought I would preface this post with this very in depth definition, since I was accused of being a flame baiter last night. Who would accuse me of this and where? Well, first of all, I should probably let you know that I was at it again on Yahoo Answers last night asking a very important cat question. I know it's been a while but I've been laying low from Yahoo Answers the last few months ever since I got red flagged back in March from asking what the best way was to sneak your cat through airport security. I was in the airport on my way to my sisters wedding and got bored so I thought I would ask. I wanted to know which technique would be best: hiding the cat in a guitar case or hiding her in my front hoodie pocket. I mean who really wants to pay an extra $150 to bring an animal on board when it's just a carry on item. Amiright?? Anyways, within 10 minutes of asking, my question got reported and was taken down. So, to all the very few fans in my blog fan club that have been nagging me to update more frequently, now you know why I haven't posted--I've been off the grid avoiding the NSA's wrath. 

So, earlier in the week, my sister Emily blogged about how she's been struggling trying to get her youngest child to sleep at night. He climbs out of his crib as soon as my sister puts him down for the night. She joked that she was contemplating lining the top of his crib frame with thumb tacs so to be like a prisoner surrounded by barbed wire.  This genius idea inspired me to write the following question on Yahoo Answers: 

Question: Can you sleep train a cat like you would a human baby/toddler?

I've been having a lot of trouble the past few weeks with one of my cats. She has refused to stay in her cat bed at night and will scratch at the door until i come and let her out. I have tried transferring her to a pack n' play but she jumps right out of that as well. Have any of y'all found a solution that works. I'm hesitant to give her kennel treatment, but I'm going crazy over here since i haven't been getting much sleep lately. I've also thought about glue-gunning thumb tacs to the rim of the pack n' play to prevent her from jumping out. Has anyone tried something like that?? Please help! Thanks in advance!


1) No, it will not work in cats. They are not crate trainable like dogs. Just put her in a room away from you. Cats are crepuscular hunters, meaning they are up at twilight and just before dawn.

2) first off, one thing you need to know is that cats are nocturnal. That is, they are primarily awake at night. A cat is not going to stay in a cat bed, unless it is the cat's idea. They are naturally defiant pets, with strong opinions. In truth, the are not the easiest to train. 

The easiest animals to train are pack animals. This is because it is in their nature to want to follow the most dominant member in a pack. Usually one takes the lead, and there is safety and security in falling into a role at some rank withn the group.

Solitary animals by contrast, live life for themselves. They only ever seek eachother out for either fighting or mating purposes, and generally percieve others of the same species as either threats or competitors. Their interaction with other animals, people included, are very need-based. Typically, you will only hear from a solitary animal when it either wants or needs something. Whether it comes when you call it by name is hit or miss.

Cat's are solitary animals. Therefore, they are going to resist any sort of training you attempt. That, and they are most well-conditioned to be awake and alert in the dark. It can be a very black night, with almost nothing but the glow of a clock, and a cat will be perfectly comfortable. He or she will see just fine, and will thus want to stalk around, play whatever games cats play, and stalk strange noises, probably in a misguided attempt to capture mice.

Keeping a cat in a pack 'n play is an excercize in futility, as you have already seen. High walls? I've seen a cat leap 8 feet in one bound. And where it cant jump, it can climb, or just scratch til the mesh that's holding it back rips.

So, what can you expect from kenneling a cat? You can expect the cat to meow in protest. To scratch at anything it can reach, and you can also expect that said cat is going to run and hide the moment you indicate it's time to go to it's cage.

It's really best to let a cat do it's own thing at night. Have a spray bottle ready with some distilled water in it (distilled wont grow mold if the bottle is lost or a while or gets left out in the sun) and just spray the cat if it gets too obnoxious. That, or roll up some socks and toss them at the cat if it gets obnoxious.

Absolutely do not do the thing with thumb tacks. Not only is that simply cruel, but also presents a danger to yourself. The cat will likely get injured, or will just learn to jump over the railing instead of onto it. Believe me, cats are too smart for this.

The best thing you can do is just learn to get used to a cat's activity at night. Leave doors open so the cat can come and go as it pleases, and maybe leave some toys out for it to play with.

One option you may want to consider is to play with your cat an hour or so before you want to go to bed. I mean play hard, and get the cat worn out. Then, it might want to cuddle, and it will bond with you more.

And that's the best advice I can give.

3) Reported for Flame Baiting. You really joking about animal abuse is funny? Get Help.

And there you have it folks. Since the second response was so good I thought I would ask him a follow up question of whether using vinegar instead of water would work just as well for spraying the cat. I'll keep you posted if he responds :)

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Goodbye Sharon, Hello Carol

I know, I know, it's been a while. Shortly after posting my last blog post, my sharonsparkles Yahoo account was reported to the Yahoo Police so I was banned from creating any new thought-provoking cat questions.   Typically this would discourage the normal adolescent prankster from seeking further online damage, but for a mischievous troll like myself, this only motivated me to step up my game.  So what ensued was the creation of a brand new yahoo email and account.  Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you

Step 1: Upload a believable profile picture- there’s a fine line between an over the top crazy woman and sincere cat lover and I believe this picture I found on google images captures just that.  She kind of reminds me of a grown up Elmira from Tiny Tunes haha

Step 2: Create an intriguing “About me” section

Step 3: And of course, get down to the bottom line with “Interests”

Now that the crazy cat lady foundation has been laid, I give you Yahoo Questions Part Deux:

Question 1:
What is the best way to mute a cat?

For the past 4 months I have been waking up to my cat purring outside my bedroom door. It has grown very old and I am very annoyed with it. Waking up to a cat purring is something that no one can get use too. If I wanted to be woken up to an animal noise I would have boughten a stinkin' rooster not a cat. I saw a documentary on Animal Planet a few years back about how a circus ring master silenced his circus tigers by removing some vocal cords or something like that. I know that this procedure can be done safely on large cats but can also be done on small domestic cats? If so is this an operation that can be done in house? If you don't recommend that where can I get the procedure done and how much will it cost?


1) I think if you give him attention and take him to bed with you he'll stop doing it. he just needs your attention

my cat is like this

2) I can't believe that a purring cat would upset you so much, even one that meows. The cat does not have a problem, it is you. Don't even destroy the vocal cords of an animal. Get yourself some ear plugs.

3) Sorry to say but If you are willing to be a pet owner. You have to take responsibility. Question to you. Why do you even have a cat? You said its annoying so I suggest you give it away to a shelter. They will take care of it better. By the looks of it you just aren't an animal person. No need to have a cat then. Good luck :)


4) If you cant handle you pet then why have one?

5) Their is a simpler solution to your question, Just give your cat a way to a family that will actually love it because it's obvious you can't stand the poor thing and removing your cats vocal cords is just Cruel how would you like it if someone removed yours?????

Question 2:
What's the best way to discipline a cat?

My cat does not listen. I feel as if she does the opposite of everything I command. I'm sick of chewed up shoelaces and couch cushions :/ So, what discipline techniques have you seen to work? So far I've tried isolating her in the mud room, spraying her with "sassy spray" (spray bottle with vinegar), shock collar, and "kennel time." None of this seems to work. If you have seen anything that has worked for you I would love to know. Thanks in advance!


1) honey.. this is a cat... not a dog... you cannot simply train it, cats will not do anything you command, and WILL be naughty when they think your not paying attention. But the only thing you can do is spray them with WATER, say it with me, WATER. NOT VINEGAR. Another thing you can do if you want a cat to stop destroying things and stop getting on furniture, is to spray things with a heavy scented perfume, cats do not like the smell and will stay away. Also consider getting a scratching post.

2) I've thought of spraying my cat too, but it doesn't really affect her in any way. What I personally do isn't so "inhumane" as my mom addresses it, I basically pick her up and grab her by the loose skin around her neck and (not too hard) just press her head against whatever she's done. I also yell, yelling is probably an easier way... but they'll understand for a while and then continue. You can also keep them in a room in which they dislike, like for example my cat; a bathroom. I keep her in there for a few minutes(while bringing her there I yell at her saying what she's done is absolutely wrong) 
These are just a few ways my mom's taught me.

3) I have NEVER had a cat chew, scratch or misbehave-here's how:
1. Never spray with anything. It increases anxiety-you want calm animals.
2. Don't yell. They run but don't listen
3. Never touch a cat in anger-they payback!

I play with my cat morning and night 5-20 minutes with a toy like "Da Bird". And I really get into it and interact with my cats while talking and laughing.

I put out 2 different types pet treats and let them pick while I talk about their choice, etc.

The point is to get them to associate listening to you with good things. Now, when I call or ask them to gett off a table, they do it, without my anger!

And they do all the loving stuff too-so worth it!

Have had many cats

4) Maybe she's bored! Get a wand toy with something on the end of the string and play with her until she gets tired! Then she will have less energy to destroy things in your house. Cats are hard to discipline and more likely to react to positive reinforcement, as opposed to negative reactions. Does she have cat furniture or toys? Get a sisal cat scratching post for her to take out her aggressions on! A cat tree with sisal on it would be even better!

36 years of cat and kitten rescue

Question 3:
What is the proper steroid dosage for cats?

Me and a few neighbors have organized a Cat Olympics for our cats to participate in. The event is next weekend and I feel like I do not have that much time left to train and prepare her. Last year I got really bad poison ivy and my doctor prescribed me some oral steroids. I have some leftover and was wondering if I should give my cat the normal dosage or if I should give her a smaller dose since she weighs a lot less than me. I am very competitive and I can't afford to lose to my neighbor's cats or else I'll never hear the end of their bragging. My cat does not seem to have the stamina like I know she should have so I am wondering if I should give her 1, 2, or maybe half a capsule? I know that the steroids they use in sports are illegal, but the ones I got were legal so it wouldn't be considered cheating or anything. Any ideas on the dosage? Thanks!


 steroids are very different. There is a significant potential you could severely harm or even kill your cat with ANY amount given.

Reg'd Vet Tech

Question 4:
Do cats have feelings?

I'm a proud owner of 8 cats :) (Tibbles, Kiki, Cleo, Boots, Beans, Cody, Maple and Stefani) Lately I feel like the other cats realize that Tibbles is my favorite. Other than allowing him to sleep at the foot of my bed and feeding him the occasional Trader Joes shrimp, I feel like I treat all my cats equally, or at least I try. Tibbles was my first cat and I can't deny he's my favorite, which is why I feel bad having him sleep with the others in the mud room. Lately i've noticed that my other seven cats are acting very hostile to Tibbles. They exclude him from their cat games and refuse to let him join in their cat parties. This inclines me towards even more favortism for Tibbles as I feel he is the victim amongst the eight cats. Is it possible that my other cats are jealous? Can cats have feelings too? Should I start taking turns bringing different cats with Tibbles for his weekly grooming? I just want my cat Tibbles to be loved and accepted by his siblings!

Thanks :) :)


1) Very much so. My cat ran off under the entertainment center and wouldn't have anything to do with me when she saw me pet another cat on the head. Her entire body language screamed "Jealousy".
When I was gone for a couple of weeks, her entire body language was extreme happiness when she saw me again. And she jumped up on my lap and tried to constantly have full body contact non-stop for a very, very long time.
I once walked in on her using the litter box, and she was embarrassed. You could see it in her face.

2) Yes, cats have feeling too. They are very smart and can catch on to when they are being treated differently. That is why if a cat is treated bad they tend to become "wild" or "feral". It isn't just because that's how they are in most cases. Some are just mean, but some are scared. Some are nice, and some just don't care. 

My cat gave birth and couldn't take care of her kittens (she tried, but couldn't) and I could only keep one. I kept one my niece named Teddy Bear. I grew VERY attached to him and him to me. The other cats noticed that I was showing favor to him and started attacking him...even his mother (which all of my cats grew up together and had never been separated). I started making sure to show them more attention and they stopped attacking him. They have all went back to being their sweet loving selves.

self, personal experience.

3) If you let Tibbles Then let the rest of them or put him with the rest of them

4) For someone having 8 cats, you seem naive about this stuff. :/

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Sharon Sparkles


I don't know if I've mentioned this before, but I am easily entertained. So over break, I had a little bit more free time and one night I got bored and started reading some Yahoo Questions and Answers.  I noticed a trend that people generally respond to cat and/or animal questions a lot faster than other questions.  So what did I do next, you might ask? I created a pseudo Crazy Cat Lady Yahoo account: sharonsmithsparkles. (Sparkles is one of my pseudo cat's name)  The following are a few of the questions I have asked and the very speedy answers (some even fascinating, at that) that followed:

Question 1:

What's the best way to dye your cat's hair?

This is a two part question I guess :) So first off, I learned my cat has become pregnant. She has black hair and I don't want her whole litter of kittens to have black hair also. I asume that if I dye her hair blonde than her kittens will take on those blonde genes too. Is there any harm to my cat if I dye her hair? Also, if there is no harm, what is the best way to do it? Will the Just for Men beard dye I got from the dollar store work? Thanks!
1) If you dye your cat's hair it will have no effect on the kittens. Living creatures pass traits to their offspring by passing on genes. The cat's hair color is a part of it's genetics and the genes it passes to it's kittens cannot be altered. If the cat's mate was a different color than black it might mean some of kittens will not have black hair, because the kittens get some of the mate's genes too, but no chemical hair dye can change the genetic make up of the cat.

Please don't dye your cat's hair, it's cruel to the animal and will have no effect on the babies


Go do some research on genetics, or take a basic biology lesson
2) I can't believe this question! Are you out of your mind. I am disgusted that you have so little common sense. Dying a cat's hair is very harmful to the cat and will harm the kittens also. Stop being so silly and ignorant. The colour of the kittens won't change because of coloring the mother's coat. The colour of the kittens depends on the mother's and father cats genes.
3) LOL what, dying a cat's hair would be harmful for your cat and changing your cats coat will not change the kittens genes. Also just because you have a black cat does not mean that all the kittens will have a black coat and if you didn't want black cats why didn't you have your female cat fixed like a smart person would have done??
4) It is dangerous and harmful to dye a cats hair and it definitely does not change what color the babies will be. That is based on the genes from both the mother and father cat and that is something that cannot be changed. Just enjoy them the way that they are.
5) Please tell me you aren't serious. Hair dye doesn't change the genes, all it does is remove pigment. The only thing it will do is hurt your cat. If you really think hair dye changes genes, you need to go back to fourth grade.
6) Firstly, yes, dying your cats hair WILL harm your cat. If you really want your cat a different colour, use your imagination or get some coloured glasses.
7) Please don't do it, because the chemicals in the dye isnt healthy and that is just silly.
8) Dyeing its hair won't change any genes. The kittens will still be black.
9) Lol, ur funny. Sad that some people dont get ur joking. Anyway, first of all, you obviously can't change the cats genes by dying its hair and the kittens will still probably inherit its black hair anyway, but im sure you already knew that. And secondly it not healthy to dye animal hair but if you must they do make shampoos specifically for animals that will dye their hair (Although i doubt it works on dark fur like black). Thats how you see these pink and blue and yellow poodles around.

Question 2:

Do all cats hibernate?

My cat has been asleep for the past three days. She will not move and has been holding her breath the whole time. Usually she will be playful like this for two hours. But we are going on to day three and she usually can't pull a joke like this for this long. So, is it typical for cats to hibernate in January like bears and all other mammals? Thanks!
1) Cats don't hibernate. If your cat is not breathing, it is more likely than not, dead.
2) Another stupid troll trick to make us all jump and fetch at the "trickiness" of the question and tell the poor unsuspecting cat owner that her cat is really dead and cats don't hibernate. We've heard them all. Go read a book.
Cats do not hibernate. It souds unnormal to me. What i would do is take him/her to the vet to check your cat out. It souds to me as if your cat has passed. Don't take that opion! Your best bet is to go to the vet to determine you issue.

sorry not a vet,
Lizzy :)


ME! :)

Question 3:

Are pet shops required to have 24 hour return policies?

For the longest time I have wanted a playmate for my cat, Sparkles. Sparkles is a minskin and I have always pictured her having a chiwawa dog as a playmate. So, today I went down to the pet shop to purchase a chiwawa, but they did not have any. It was ok though (or so I thought) because I fell in love with another dog which I thought would resemble a chiwawa after a quick grooming. I purchased a Yorkie Terrier (not the cheapest dogs in case your wondering). So anyways, I came home and got out clippers and trimmed her down with the #1 but sadly, she does not resemble the chiwawa I was hoping for :( Also she has become very aggressive to my Sparkles and now I'm stuck with a dog that is not longer cute and looks nothing like a chiwawa. So my question is, are all mall pet shops required to have a 24 hour return policy? I feel like I just threw $550 away! I had no idea that the cute, innocent looking dog I bought would really turn out to be so hostile towards my cat! Please let me know ASAP. Thanks!
1) They should have told you if they did have any kind of return policy. That would be something you would have to take up with the breeder that provided the store with the puppy. It will most likely be a crappy puppy mill so don't expect to get your money back.
2) Of course they are not required to give you your money back. You shaved down the dog!!! You can't just buy any breed and try to customize it to look like another breed. Learn to love the dog for who she is or if you can't give her to a no kill shelter or the Humane Society. You bought a Yorkie and you got a Yorkie. It isn't the dogs fault.


Long time dog owner
 3) Sparkles is a cute name for a cat. I can't say I've met many Minskins! I'm sure there are other pet shops in the area that have Chihuahuas for sale. Miniature Pinschers are similar to Chihuahuas, too. But, Yorkshire Terriers are great dogs. You need to slowly introduce your new dog to your cat by letting the dog smell the cat's bedding. No store is required to have any return policy. I recommend enrolling your new dog in obedience classes. Once basic obedience is mastered, you can practice your dog's commands in front of Sparkles. If your dog tries to bark or chase Sparkles, move him away from her. Don't allow them to be together if you cannot supervise them.
 4) That is the stupidest thing I have read in a long while.
Troll bedtime is well past.
5) Another typical, pathetic little Troll question. Find another hobby because Trolling is not something you are any good at. By the way, there is no such thing as a minskin and this is how you spell Chihuahua, not Chiwawa. Find something more constructive to do with your time.

@ [Answer 3]. I don't know where you get your knowledge from but your advice is way off. You have never met a minskin because they don't exist, a Min Pin is not like a Chihuahua, you are supporting puppy mills by encouraging someone to buy from a pet store, etc... Before you answer a question, you need to educate yourself first, so you don't mislead others.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Flashback Friday

It’s been too long since I’ve updated this thing.  I’d like to blame it on the fact that my MacBook died about a year ago and I no longer have the luxury of countless hours of free time during my graveyard shift, but the fact is that Amy worked her TEE (Technology & Engineering Education) magic a couple of months ago and resurrected my laptop .  So really, I have no excuse other than the dreadful downfall of us Hansen kids-laziness. :/

I feel like there is so much that has happened since my last blog post. I don’t know why, but I feel like my life is a lot more eventful than the typical 26 year old.  This could be due to the fact that I am VERY easily entertained (I mean you kind of have to be when you don’t get out much as a kid and you spend every weekend with your 5 sisters pulling pranks on neighbors or throwing water balloons at incoming cars) or the fact that I constantly put myself in interesting or unusual situations at times.  So, in thinking of where I could possibly start, I thought it would be a nice casual-Friday post to bring back a blast from the past.  A couple months ago, my friend, Aubrey (who for some reason is one of my bigger blog fans/followers; or at least she pretends to be haha) came in town from New York and one night we went out to eat along with some other mutual friends at the local Malt Shoppe.  While there, the smell of grease and the fear of having my clothes and myself smell like grease (which happens to be one of my biggest pet peeves) must have tailspinned me into a posttraumatic stress trance.  It so happens that 8 years previously I actually worked in a very similar atmosphere, at the Creamery on 9th, while attending my freshman year at BYU.  I then began to relate my various “hood-rat” stories and my “3 strikes” associated with my near termination.  I was kind of hesitant to blog about these follies of my youth, but Aubrey has been bugging me to document the ordeal on here, if nothing else for my posterity’s sake. Haha. So, without further ado, I present this flashback Friday.

As a freshman at BYU, you couldn’t have picked a more happening place to work than the Creamery on 9th.  I mean everyone and there mother (and grandmother) literally went there.  It was especially the place to go for all freshman with meal plan cards, because you were able to buy groceries, grab a bite to eat at the grille, and/or go on a date to get ice cream.   It just so happened that my dorm room door was no more than 50ft from the Creamery, so it was only natural that I would land a job there.  Before moving my way up to primetime working the grill, I first began my college working career as an early morning janitor there.  I worked Monday-Friday starting at 7 a.m.  My shift was 4 hours long and by 8:30 a.m. I almost always was done with my daily chores.  I often spent the remainder of my time taking a nap on the men’s restroom toilet and/or getting my daily workout in while doing sit-ups and pushups in a locked bathroom stall (I promise it wasn’t that gross because I had already mopped and cleaned the bathroom and the stall was nice and spacious because it was handicap friendly :) hahaha). 

Now, on to the good stuff! After one semester of waking up daily at the crack of dawn, I got upgraded to 1st class (aka working the evening shifts at the grille).  Work could not get any better.  I worked with one of my roommates on a 4-man team while my other roommate worked register at the grocery in the same store.  Let’s just say we had a little too much fun.  Sometimes we would just throw the football across the store with my other roommate at the grocery register.  However, mostly time was spent just hooking up friends with extra fries and larger-than-normal scoops of ice cream or spending the night flirting with our freshman lady friends that would come in to see (use?) us. Haha.   In fact, I still remember one of my favorite pick-up lines.  We had an ice cream called “Bishop’s Bash” and whenever a cute girl would ask what was in the Bishop’s Bash I would reply, “Chocolate, pecans, caramel, a little consecrated oil…” Usually they laughed or chuckled.  One time, this backfired on me when giving this response to a mom when asked what was in the Bishop’s Bash.  For the record, I was not trying to “pick her up”. It got so trivial that I would tell anyone who would ask what the Bishop Bash “recipe” was.  Anyways, she demanded to speak to my supervisor, and she chewed me out for being sacrilegious and she let me know that she did not find it funny.  In return, my supervisor just gave me a “slap on the wrist” and basically said to make sure that it didn't happen again. 

Speaking of being disciplined, I am reminded of the “hamburger incident.” One day at work we accidently made an extra hamburger.  I asked my Team Lead what we should do with it and she said to just give it away to a customer.  We made an announcement on the store intercom that anyone who wanted the extra hamburger could come and get it at the grill.  After a few minutes of waiting, I realized that no one was coming.  “Sweet! Free food,” I thought. I then asked my Team Lead if we could eat it since no one wanted it and I was shocked when she told me I couldn’t and that we had to throw it away.  “Throw it away?!? Yeah right,” I thought to myself. I then told her I would go “throw it away” in the back.  After taking the plate to the back I realized that it was not a good place because it was out in the open and an easy place to be spotted.  I then had a genius idea to retreat to my “quiet place” from my previous semester’s janitorial home-the Men’s Restroom! hahaha.  So there I was: apron on, hamburger in hand, standing near the sink, making sure the coast was clear to enjoy my free meal.  As I was taking my first bite the store manager walks in and sees me! I was caught, red hamburger handed! Wait, me get caught? I’m too good for that.  I played it off like it was no big deal. I placed the plate on top of the paper towel dispenser, washed my hands, grabbed the plate and walked out like I knew what I was doing. I then took the hamburger to the next best place where I thought I could eat in peace--the walk-in freezer! Hahaha. I then proceeded to eat the burger in the freezing peace and quiet and then I returned to work.

All was good until two days later I heard over the intercom, “Freddie, to the back office.” I meandered my way through the grocery aisles to the back office where the manager told me to take a seat.  He then asked me, “Do you know why I called you in?”  Wow, talk about a million-dollar question.  I was thinking of all the possible things that it could possibly be.  My mind was racing and sifting through all of the possible reasons: “I eat the gummy bears from the ice cream topping display, I let the little kids play on the intercom microphone, I don’t have my food handler’s permit, I planned an employee party after close that consisted of playing Super Market Sweep, I hooked my friends up with food, I changed the Shake of the month of February from the “Valentine Shake” to the “Black History Month Shake” (*side note- I thought it was dumb that we still sold the Valentine Shake after February 14th and we still had other holidays to celebrate, so I told customers they could pick any 3 chocolate based ice creams and we would mix it up and make a milkshake for them. Haha I’m ridiculous I know).” Finally, I determined it best that he tell me in case I confessed to something that he didn’t know about.  “I have no idea,” I said. He then reminded me of our encounter in the bathroom from a few days prior.  How could I have forgotten? I mean, I guess I thought I played it off quite well, but nonetheless there I sat getting chastised for violating who knows how many health codes and store policies.  Maybe he would have cut me some slack had I told him I didn’t even have my Food Handler’s Permit; so in reality I was innocent? Nah, probably not the best idea.  I then was informed that if I made one more mistake I would receive my third “strike” and be let go. Apparently, he had marked me up for my first “strike” the one time my roommates and I showed up one night on one of our days off and hopped the counter, scooped ourselves ice cream, and left. We didn’t want to wait in the super long line in front of us.  Whoops. 

The last month of the semester I was constantly on edge, paranoid that I was going to get rung up for my last mishap.  I even laid off the amount of times I would sneak gummy bears from the topping displays.  I couldn’t take the stress anymore, so a week later I put in my two weeks notice.  Sometime during this period my roommate and I thought it would be funny to ditch work on the same day to leave the two other girls, who at times underappreciated us, alone to man the grill, ice cream, and register.  That didn’t go over too well.  My supervisor then informed me that I would have received my third “strike” but since the semester was almost over and I had a few days left that he would just let it go. Looking back, I realize I was really immature, but again grant me amnesty; I was a young mischievous lad. 

p.s. Shout-out  to my sister/best friend Sarah.  Happy Birthday!!! Love ya!

Monday, May 21, 2012

How do we honor mothers, ours and others?

So last week I was asked to give a talk in church on Mothers Day and thought I would just record this tribute to my mom. Love ya mama xoxo.

Good afternoon brothers and sisters. As you might have guessed, my topic has been connected with the themes of the other talks given this Mother’s Day on that of Mothers. My specific topic is “How do we honor mothers, ours and others?” In preparation for this talk I was thinking of some kind of intriguing story or funny joke to tell. However, the only thing that kept popping into my mind was “yo mama” jokes. Since that’s not happening, I’ve decided to scratch that idea and just get on with my talk.

Ironically, this is the 3rd time in 5 years that I’ve given a Mother’s Day talk. I’ve come to the conclusion that our bishopric and past bishoprics can see right through me and they all know that I’m a “mama’s boy.” It’s true—I am a “Mama’s Boy.” In fact, when I was in 7th grade my Language Arts class was given the assignment of making a “mentor doll” in honor of a mentor in our life. I know what you’re thinking; making dolls is more of an Arts and Crafts class assignment and not a Language Arts project. I promise, it didn’t seem that weird at the time. Plus, there were some other assignments that went along with this mentor project including poems and other writing assignments. So anyway, it turned out that I was the only boy in the class that chose my mother as my mentor, instead of a dad, athlete, or other influential male figure. I am proud to say that to this day, she is still my mentor and friend.

I understand that there may be some of you here today who perhaps have lost your mother or might not have the best relationship with them. I want you to know that the following message today is just as applicable to you in that we all have mother-like mentors or role models in our very own lives and the topic is not just on honoring our mothers, but other mothers as well and womanhood as a whole. Our church teaches the sacredness of motherhood and places it as the highest honor in human life. In a General Relief Society Meeting held some years ago Mary Foulger stated:
“We all stand in “awe:” at Mary’s assignment to be the mother of the Lord, but women, too have been called to be the mother of future gods. A humble responsibility and blessing. The very purpose of creation depends upon earthly mothers to bring His children unto eternal life.”

D&C 64:33 says, “be not weary in welldoing, for ye are laying the foundation for a great work” Indeed, there is none greater. President Heber J. Grant said, “Without the devotion and absolute testimony of the living God in the hearts of our mothers, this Church would die.”

We know from the 10 commandments that we need to “honor thy mother.” So, how do we honor mothers, ours and others?

A famed officer from the Civil War period when asked to name the incident of the Civil War that he considered the most remarkable for bravery, said that there was in his regiment a man whom everybody liked, a man who was brave and noble, who was pure in his daily life, absolutely free from dissipations in which most of the other men indulged. One night at a champagne supper, when many were becoming intoxicated, someone called for a toast from this young man. He arose, pale but with perfect self-control, and declared: “Gentlemen, I will give you a toast which you may drink as you will, but which I will drink in water. The toast that I have to give is, ‘Our mothers.’”
Instantly a strange spell seemed to come over all the tipsy men. They drank the toast in silence. There was no more laughter, no more song, and one by one they left the room. The lamp of memory had begun to burn, and the name of Mother touched every man’s heart.

Men turn from evil and yield to their better natures when mother is remembered. As a missionary there’s a saying to "be the missionary that your mother thinks you are” I propose that the way in which we honor mothers is by being the son or daughter they think we are. One certain way each can honor mother is to live the truths our mother and/or motherly role models so patiently taught.

President Hinckley once gave a talk entitled, “Lessons I learned as a Boy.” I wish to join him in my purpose of showing ways in which we honor mother by living the truths they taught.

The first lesson I wish to share is of Service and Charity. It is no mistake that the Relief Society motto is “Charity Never Faileth.” My mom is constantly serving. She has always been one to not only give rides to church for investigators and recent converts, but she also fellowships them. Growing up our house was known as “Hotel Hansen” because my mom was continually hosting random guests that needed a night or two to stay.( and in some instances-months!). I have also seen her selflessly give up her bedroom, and instead sleep on a blowup mattress in the hall. Another story that comes to mind was once while at an inner-city Burger King drive thru, my mom began chatting with the teenage boy at the register and she got to know him a little bit. After finding out that he had a lot of brothers and sisters and came form a less fortunate family, my mom grabbed my little brother’s X-BOX that happened to be in the car, and asked him if he thought he and his siblings would enjoy it. The young man's face lit up and gladly accepted it.

Joseph F. Smith said:
"Charity, or love, is the greatest principle in existence. If we can lend a helping hand to the oppressed, if we can aid those who are despondent and in sorrow, if we can uplift and ameliorate the condition of mankind, it is our mission to do it, it is an essential part of our religion to do it"

Not only is my mom great at giving service but she’s also a little too good and volunteering her children to serve. Some examples include: volunteering my sisters for babysitting in the neighborhood and church. She would also sign me up to go work with the missionaries. Once, I remember coming home from a long day of work the summer before I left on my mission and before I had time to eat or rest she told me that she told the neighbor I would come help move some furniture for her. Just a few weeks ago, my little brother updated his facebook status and it read, “Some random lady just called and asked what time would be good for me to cut her grass. She said mom told her I would be more than happy to do it. REALLY MOM?!?!?” hahaha. That made me laugh when I read it and it made me happy to know that my mom was teaching my youngest brother just as she had taught each and every one of my siblings to serve. I am truly grateful for the lessons that were instilled in me while growing up and for the most part to this day it comes as second nature. A great way for us to honor mothers is by doing that which they do so well—Love and Serve.

Another lesson I learned as a boy was to not pass over things for the next person to do and to leave things better than you found it. I recall one Saturday morning (or maybe it was more than one), my sisters and I were all woken up and directed to meet my mom in the guest bathroom downstairs. Supposedly one of us had forgotten to replace the toilet paper on the empty toilet paper holder. I guess this was a recurring incident in our household. My mom then made each of us take turns putting on the toilet paper roll then taking it off and repeating it 10 times. I know that may seem weird, but it was a simple message that has stuck with me. Do not pass over things for the next person to do. I also recall when on vacations my mom would not let the maids pick up after us during our whole stay. She would make us make the beds and tidy up. Who does that?

In The October 2011 Priesthood Session President Uchtdorf said:
“This very hour there are many members of the Church who are suffering. They are hungry, stretched financially, and struggling with all manner of physical, emotional, and spiritual distress. They pray with all the energy of their souls for succor, for relief.
Brethren, please do not think that this is someone else’s responsibility. It is mine, and it is yours. We are all enlisted. “All” means all—every Aaronic and Melchizedek Priesthood holder, rich and poor, in every nation. In the Lord’s plan, there is something everyone can contribute.”

Brethren, please let us not pass over problems that we can help with. Let us not assume that it is someone else's roomate, friend, neighbor, or hometeachee. Let's man up and take responsibility.

In closing, I would just like to share examples of two exemplary representatives that we can learn from of what it means to honor women. The first, is our current prophet, Thomas S. Monson. We are all aware that as a young bishop he brought it upon himself to visit each and every of the 80+ widows in his ward during the holidays. He literally lives, as James states, a “Pure religion” by “visit[ing] the fatherless and widows in their affliction.”
D&C 81:5: reads “Succor the weak, lift up the hands which hang down, and strengthen the feeble knees.” Elder Wirthlin stated:
“At the final day the Savior will not ask about the nature of our callings. He will not inquire about our material possessions or fame. He will ask if we ministered to the sick, gave food and drink to the hungry, visited those in prison, or gave succor to the weak. When we reach out to assist the least of Heavenly Father’s children, we do it unto Him. That is the essence of the gospel of Jesus Christ.”

President Monson has been a great model of how we should honor mothers/women. The last and greatest example I would like to talk about on how to honor mothers is our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. During the last moments of his mortal life while on the cross, Christ sees his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing by. He speaks: “Woman, behold thy son! Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother!”

Of this scripture, President Monson says,
“From that awful hour when time stood still, when the earth did quake and great mountains were brought down—yes, through the annals of history, over the centuries of years and beyond the span of time—there echoes His simple yet divine words, “Behold thy mother. As we truly listen to that gentle command and with gladness obey its intent, gone forever will be the vast legions of “mothers forgotten.” Everywhere present will be “mothers remembered,” “mothers blessed,” and “mothers loved”; and, as in the beginning, God will once again survey the workmanship of His own hand and be led to say, “It is very good.”’
“May each of us treasure this truth: One cannot forget mother and remember God. One cannot remember mother and forget God. Why? Because these two sacred persons, God and mother, partners in creation, in love, in sacrifice, in service, are as one.”

Testimony (We can honor mother by living the truths they so patiently taught.)

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Free Bunnies!

So last Friday night I got a little bored and talked my roommates out of going to bed in order to engage in a prank for our newly acquired roommate, Brett. We felt like we hadn’t truly “initiated” him into our apartment yet. I recalled a funny prank that a coworker pulled on me a couple years ago, when she placed an ad on for a killer deal for MY car without me knowing. I remember how confused I was leaving the temple that day and seeing that I had about 10-15 missed calls and texts of people asking to “check out” my car. haha. Luckily, I was able to diffuse that bomb before it escalated and went home and removed that advertisement from the web.

We decided to do something similar with Brett, but I wanted to incorporate Easter since it was coming up in the next couple of days. I noticed that there was a category for “Free Pets” on the classified page on KSL and so I came up with a brilliant idea to give away FREE BUNNIES (from Brett) the day before Easter. Hahaha. Here is the advertisement that I posted:
I got the following text that next morning from Brett: “ALRIGHT. Who put my name and number on ksl advertising for pet bunnys?! I have had to disappoint three mothers already lol.” I played it off like I didn’t know what he was talking about. He had work from 8-12 that morning and when he got home he stormed in all flustered and confused. It was hilarious! You would have to know Brett to fully appreciate his histrionics in times of unfortunate circumstances. *side note: One night he had come home shuffling in the door shivering and barely able to speak. He had just returned from driving home through the canyon for an hour and a half, where he had given a Fireside on his recent return from his mission in England. He must have still been in the moment of being back in England because he got pulled over for driving on the wrong side of the road! Hahaha. He went to roll down the passenger window, but the officer came to his window so he had to roll down his driver side window. Not that big of a deal, if it weren’t for the fact that his windows don’t roll back up. Hahahaha. Poor Brett. He drove all the way back in the snow with both windows rolled down. His story and reaction that night was priceless! This is just one of the many funny Brett stories of unfortunate events. Haha* Anyways, back to the bunny story--on his walk home from work he had received 7 calls alone! Hahaha. My roomates and I still played it cool as if we didn’t know what he was talking about. He said there were tons of moms wanting the bunnies. The phone calls started rolling in starting at 6:40 am. He said that "Creepy Carol" woke him up letting him know that she WANTED two of his bunnies. She didn't even mention his advertisement so he told this "pervert" (so he thought) that she had the wrong number and he hung up on her. By the third call he realized that it was too big of a coincidence that people thought he was some kind of generous bunny breeder. Haha.

My favorite call he received, though, was Marco (from Tropoya? Haha). He wanted too many details on the bunnies from the message that he left. The way he sounded, I’m pretty sure he wanted to have a nice Easter bunny meal. It was so funny listening to all these ladies leave all these “flirty” messages trying to insure themselves of a pick from the litter. So anyways, I finally cracked and couldn’t stop laughing from hearing him relate all the calls he got. He got over 50 calls! I don’t think he knew how to take down the ad, so I just updated it to “sold.” Brett took it really well (I think) and we are able to laugh about it now. On a related note, check out this more elaborate prank that Amy’s coworker and his friends did (they even made the news):

Monday, October 31, 2011

The Chronicles of Costco

It's been a while since my last post. A lot has happened since my resignation as bilingual patient coordinator at the Hood Clinic Health Clinic. Unfortunately, I never followed through with Moses for my potential ASIAN,CAUCASIAN,HISPANIC,LATINO,MEXICAN Model gig. I will forever be haunted by the "what ifs" of a potential, blossoming career as a magazine model. O well.

My optimistic future of single adult life in Louisiana did not last long. Shortly after my attempt of finding a fitting job in New Orleans, I was impressed to move back to Utah. It's funny how I was inspired to leave Provo, only to find my self moving right back. I am grateful, though, for the time I was able to spend at home this past summer. Aside from being with my mom and little brother, I was able to spend a lot of quality time with Maw Maw and Paw Paw Bourgeois.

Upon returning to Provo, I once again began the hunt for a job. After a few odd jobs, temp jobs, and 2 days as an employee on the bottom of a sketchy pyramid scheme, I finally received a phone call for my dream job (or so I thought hahaha)-- a Costco employee! I mean, really, who doesn't love Costco? You always hear of how great the benefits are and how people love working there. I could just see myself now: Arriving to work, putting on a cool apron, wheeling out a sample display, unwrapping a box of taquitos, placing the taquitos in the microwave, cutting them in to bite-sized pieces with scissors, and then being the most loved person in the world by allowing little kids and cheap moms to sneak more than one sample. If that's not the American dream then I don't know what is. However, my daydreaming drool was quickly wiped away when learning that I was to be hired as a morning food stocker. And by morning food stocker I mean being done with work before shoppers even arrive for Costco to be open. That means that my shifts would begin at 5 and occasionally 4am. Ok, I could still do this. How bad could it really be? Let's just say by day 3, I was already devising a way to quit. Here is an interchange of texts between my bff Levi and myself.

Ok, ok, i know what you're thinking- I'm over-exaggerating. But really, even the Mexican guy that got hired the same time as me treated me like Cinderella. For example, sometimes he would come over and ask to borrow my pallet jack for "2 minutes"(Costco seems to have more workers than they do pallet jacks so not everyone is supplied with one) A half hour would go by and I would have to trace him down and retrieve my pallet jack. I guess borrow means takes to this hombre. Speaking of borowing, he would come up to me at work and ask to "borrow" some money so he could get a drink from the vending machine. haha. Not a chance!

So, I mentioned that I worked with a dwarf that drove a forklift. Here is a picture for proof. This was not the only mystical being I worked with. I also had the opportunity of working with elves and fairies. Ok, not really elves. However, my immediate boss was shorter, had pointy ears and a goatee and just reminded me of an elf. It didn't help either, that the seasonal Costco Christmas displays were up. It was just that much more fitting that I felt like I was in Santa's workshop. So, anywho, I'll refer to him as "Papa Elf." Anyways, Papa Elf would boss me around and just give me the odd jobs to do, along with the jobs that no one else wanted to do. One day he made me clean ALL the windows in the fridge and freezer sections of the store. I couldn't feel my fingers by the end of the shift. Other days he would put me on the heavy lifting aisles. Another day he had me working in the walk-in fridge. The worst thing he did, however was come up with the "buddy system." *Side note there is a worker there that creeped me out. He was a little femmy, and would blast music from his radio mainly consisting of lady gaga type music. I have just described the fairy I was referring to haha.* Papa Elf decided that he wanted to pair up the new employees with veteran workers so that we could be trained and shown the ropes. Yup, you guessed it--I got to be "buddied" with the fairy. Halfway through working with him, the first question he asked me was, "What's your situation?" I took this to mean whether or not I was still in school, why I'm working at Costco, etc. After telling him my "situation" I learned this was not the question he had implied because he quickly rephrased his question by: "Are you married?" EEWWWWW. I didn't know quite how to reply, but I did make sure to let him know that I was "strictly chickly" hahaha.

In the mean time, I had been interviewing with a few different companies and just this past Friday I received a job offer for a financial representative position. I was sure to notify Costco the same day that I would no longer be working for them. They had me fill out some paperwork and issued me my last paycheck. What did I do to celebrate, you might ask? Well, Amy and I went to a Halloween store and bought another granny mask to replace a different one we lost the previous year. hahaha. I'm weird I know, but hey-simple pleasures. And here is the granny mask in action with Amy doing a little impromptu dance.

and just for good time sakes, you can compare the differences from our old mask. here is a video I took of Shane when we were screwing around one night. hahaha