Katie & Briscoe

Katie & Briscoe

Monday, November 29, 2010

Hilarity as Therapy...

My therapist says my sense of humor is a big part of what helps me get through the stress of having cancer. (Not to leave God out here, because we both also recognize and acknowledge that He is my ultimate Resource.) But laughter certainly helps to overcome the occasionally uncomfortable, unpleasant, and/or outright sickening aspects of reality. I have learned that a good sense of humor is a definite bonus in life. (Jeanne Robertson makes a living spreading this notion. Lord bless you if you don't know who she is. Here's a bit of one of her routines. Click her name above if you want to visit her site.)

Humor as a coping mechanism is nothing but common sense to me. Let's face it, when something that is utterly beyond your control happens, no matter how unpleasant, humiliating, or even frightening, you have two choices in how to deal with it. One) you can work yourself up into a lather, get mad and/or frustrated, and act like an out of control basketcase, or; Two) you can accept the fact that you can't change the situation with as much grace and humor as you can muster. Okay, I don't do grace particularly well. Not in any classic sense of the word, at least. But I can do the humor. I mean, what's the point in driving yourself nuts over something you have no control over? I have cancer. It is sometimes painful, sometimes disgusting, sometimes frightening, but it is almost always absurd as well. In so many ways, it is a surreal experience that just begs to be laughed at. From the chemo brain that of late makes even basic math a chore, (24/3 anyone? Yeah, I had to think about that for a few minutes the other day. *head shakes*) to the utter insanity of the treatment for cancer (which might kill me) being repeated infusions of outright poison (which also might kill me). Yeah, that makes all kinds of logical sense. LOL (I really do laugh when I think about it.)

So I have cancer. Some days it really stinks. Some days I hurt a lot and I won't pretend that I enjoy that or that I don't occasionally get frustrated or just plain sick and tired of being sick and tired. But all in all, even on the days when I feel the worst, I still try to find some humor somewhere. Which is why I absolutely get giddy when I come across something on the internet that I can laugh at. Hence my posts of amusing LOLs from the I Can Haz Cheezburger site on my Facebook page. I'd post some examples, but seriously, there are just too many that make me laugh til I cry to even begin to attempt to pick favorites. Wait, no, I just thought of one from way back that makes me start snickering just thinking about it.
Yeah, I might be the weirdo in my family. LOL

Anyway, I use Google Reader to keep track of my miscellaneous feeds and blogs. Not that I use it all that much on my laptop because I have the Reeder app on my iPad and that's where I do most of my reading. I got on the laptop earlier today, though, to do a little housecleaning on Reader. I'm an organizing freak when it comes to my computer. I have a file folder for everything under the sun, and usually folders within folders just so I can keep everything neatly organized. (As a quick aside, thank you Steve Jobs for finally getting around to getting IOS 4 onto the iPad. Yes, the ability to multitask and to collect my apps into folders makes it an even more awesome toy than before. Just wish you'd given it those abilities out of the box. End of rant.) So I was on Google Reader on my laptop, putting a couple of new feeds into folders when I decided to click on that "Suggestions" link to see just what Google thought I would be interested in. Most of it was junk. In fact, I outright ignored everything I saw until I spotted something called Cake Wrecks. This piqued my interest and then I read the tag line: "When professional cakes go horribly, hilariously wrong." This I had to see.

I have a love/hate relationship with the growing idiocy of humanity. Love because it's hard not to laugh out loud at some of the things I see/hear others write/say with complete seriousness. Hate because I honestly cannot imagine why so many find it so difficult to distinguish the difference between your/you're; their/there/they're; singular and plural; etc. Ex: Mark and I went to the store late the other night. Late because it was Black Friday and neither of us had any interest in braving the crowds. Plus, crowds are flat out dangerous for me these days. Anyway, we were at Wal-Mart wandering down the candy isle. Mark had a sweet tooth. So he's browsing the M & M's when I suddenly catch what a woman right beside us is saying. I'm going to do my best to convey this as it was said. Spelling phonetically may not be my strong suit, though, so bear with me. She was with a young man that I would soon realize was her son. She said, "I'm looking for marshmallow cherry cordials." Only she didn't say "\ˈkȯr-jəl\" she said it more like "\kȯr-dī-ˈl\." That's a long "i" sound in the middle followed by a third syllable pronounced something like "all." So, okay, I can understand that some people might not necessarily know how to pronounce cordial, especially as it's one of those words that is not pronounced phonetically. (Never mind that I was also wondering at this point exactly what a marshmallow cherry cordial was. I mean, this is something I've never even heard of, nor can I imagine it. LOL) I did find myself both tempted to chuckle at this pronunciation and inwardly cringing at it at the same time. Then, her son (who was easily in his late teens) replied with, "Is they in a box?" All urge to laugh vanished at this. Is they? Really? He was certainly old enough to know better. I was glad to leave the aisle as the butchery of the English language continued. (She did find her marshmallow cherry cordials, though. Apparently they were little chocolate covered Santa things.)

So this demonstrates my love (can't help but laugh sometimes at how badly people manage to mangle the language they not only grow up speaking and reading, but also supposedly spend 12 or more years in school studying) and hate (HOW in the world can they be so illiterate after spending 12 or more years in school studying English!?!) relationship with poor spelling and/or grammar. And so, back to Cake Wrecks. This blog is run by a husband/wife team (mostly the wife) and a friend who make snarky comments about insanely horrible cake decor that they receive pics of. Many, many of the photos they post are examples of ridiculously bad spelling by cake decorators. I just have to show you this one as an example.
It says, "It a Gril." Original Blog Post
Yes, inexplicably those are bananas and strawberries ringing the top of the cake. And check out that oh-so-baby-girly dirt brown color! And this is just the beginning. I admit that I don't find every post laugh until I cry worthy. Sometimes, it was the comments after the post that finally make me snort with laughter. But the wit that accompanies some of these images - as well as the images themselves - were sometimes enough to make me gasp as I tried to catch my breath from the gales of laughter.
Today, we be having's a celebiation of learnir!
The caption is by the blog writer Jen. Yeah, I know we have the same name. A similar sense of humor, too. LOL She followed this comment up with a second, "(Note: typing that last sentence was actually painful. See what I go through for you?)" Double LOL!!!

Needless to say, I have spent the past long while looking back through many of her posts and laughing my head off. It is just stunningly hilarious (as well as disturbingly sad) that so many supposed "professionals" out there appear to have no grasp of basic English. The above is just one of literally hundreds of examples of misspellings. On this same post is a photo of another cake where the decorator managed to misspell a three letter word. It was supposed to be, "You Did It!" It came out, "You Dit It!" I had to stare at that one in awe for a few seconds. Seriously? They couldn't spell "did?" Like Jen, I found it was making my head ache just a bit. Still, like so much else in life, I figure I might as well laugh at it. Because I cannot change the ignorance of these people. Somehow, they managed to make it all the way through high school without gaining a basic understanding of the English language. We all make mistakes. My grammar is hardly perfect. And anyone can misspell a word. But I'd like to think that if it was my job to make a product for someone else that I'd at least break out a dictionary to make sure I had the words right. Is that so hard? Or do they just not realize how atrocious their spelling/grammar is? Can you say, UNPROFESSIONAL? I hope I mentioned that. Jen only posts cakes that have been done by professionals. IE, a customer somewhere actually paid them money to do it.

It is tragic how this lack of even the most basic grasp of our language is becoming increasingly commonplace. Then again, I know for a fact that at least some of our schools are promoting children to the next grade when they've clearly failed at least part of the previous one. So maybe it isn't the illiterate kids that are the dumb ones, here. Anyway, Jen's blog made me laugh out loud more than once. And just as an FYI, she doesn't only post pics of cakes gone horribly wrong. Once a week she posts what she calls "sweets." Pics of things that are nothing less that pure works of art. Let me find one as an example.
I am in awe of how much the fondant looks like fabric.

The detail here is just plain amazing.

Hours of piping this by hand. I can't even imagine!

All of these flowers are hand made from gum paste. Meaning they are edible. As is the beautiful pink bow. And just LOOK at the insane detail of that cross hatch! And the lace!

I love orchids.
Okay, so I couldn't stop at just one. These cakes are beyond incredible. This is edible artwork. The time, thought, planning and precision that goes into something like this is just amazing. I can't even begin to imagine how someone makes all these flowers!

Anyway, just thought I'd share a few laughs and some Ooh's and Ahh's as well. Learn to laugh at what you can't change. It'll make you - and everyone around you - a lot happier!

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