Disney survey from the Future! The roast futurebeast was delicious, thank you for asking.

Disney sent me a survey about my experience during a trip I will take in June of 2015. I’m not clairvoyant like Disney apparently is, so I did my best to give them the feedback they wanted.

1. Your overall experience and value: It was glurptastic (projected 2015 lingo for “fun”)!

2. Your experience with the rides, shows, attractions, and entertainment: The Carousel of Progress is terribly out of date. There’s not a single mention of the Robotic Revolution in May 2013.

3. Your experience with the characters: Overall, I would say it was nice. However, Mickey Mouse got stuck in “hug mode” and it took them 3 hours to pry me loose.

4. Your experience with the food offered: For the fine dining, the roast futurebeast was delicious. For your quick service establishments, there was much to be desired. I mean, seriously, how long does it take to get a food pill out of the bottle? Quick, my ass.

5. Your experience shopping: The eye scanner nearly blinded me. I’ll just leave it at that.

6. The cast members/employees: All were well-oiled machines and/or properly brainwashed. Kudos.

7. Any special or magical experiences you had: I’d never seen a hover scooter before until now – truly magical. Makes me wish I was fatter.

8. Any challenges or difficulties you encountered: Mission to Actual Mars was great on the way, but once you get there, there’s nothing to do. Bor.ing.

9. Some details about yourself: I live in North Carolina with a vacation home on the moon. I can afford it because I won the lottery. I was also voted Overload of all Dominion – I didn’t even run, it was all write-in votes!

I was expecting a personal call of thanks from an unfrozen Walt Disney from the future, but all I got was an e-mail apologizing for the “error.” Yeah, whatever, Diz, you know I helped. You know it.

Don’t Stick Your Fingers in the Crates – Warning Sign Blindness (or, Wizards)

For the past 6-ish years, I’ve worked with a local dog rescue. The first thing to understand about most people who work with dog rescue is the emphasis on the dog part of all of it. People don’t go into dog rescue to interact with other people. That is key. There are endless stories on the mad mad mad world of dog rescue, but today, I’d like to type about warning signs.

There are lots of movies and People Magazine articles about man’s indomitable spirit. There aren’t as many about man’s indomitable ability to not see something in front of his face. And I mean people who can see, not blind people – they have lots of movies and articles.

Every Saturday, our dog rescue fills a van full of adoptable dogs and sets them up at a Petco about 25 minutes away. So, these dogs, who have already lost their homes at least once, get carted off to a weird place with tons of strangers, have to ride in a crate in a van both ways and get jostled around all day long. It’s loud, messy, and chaotic. Almost all of the dogs are friendly, and really have no major issue with the madness.

"Hi, I’m happy, goofy, and ready for anything."

There are some dogs who get overwhelmed by the whole ordeal, mostly, because it’s completely overwhelming, and, because sometimes they may not have had the best life up to this point. Personally, I have had to keep myself from biting other people several times, so I empathize. And, the thing is, for the most part, they DO NOT bite, ever. But, for the sake of liability, fair warning, and to be sure all bases are covered – every crate gets at least one warning sign on the front door. Usually, two – one on the top, too.

Even the invisible dogs shouldn't be touched.

The options were the signs, or try to reason with the dogs, and I now believe we made an error in not trying to reason with the dogs, first. Our adoption event lasts 4 hours every week. And, we try to be polite and “customer service-y.” If you stick your hand in a crate, you will get different reactions, depending on the hour you do it:

First hour: “Hi, please be careful, these dogs are a little overwhelmed so for safety’s sake we ask that you not stick your fingers in there. They may even nip because they think you have a treat or something. I’d be happy to get any dog out that you’d like to meet.”

Second hour: “Please don’t put your fingers in the crates.”

Third hour: “No fingers.”

Fourth hour: Most likely a grunting sound.

Why the deterioration of friendliness? Remember, most of us aren’t people-people. And, secondly, the staggering amount of people who have Warning Sign Blindness. I estimate that nearly 80% of the population is afflicted with it.*

Fingers in Crate
Teach, your children well...
Finger in Crate plus a bob and weave
This lady is ducking under a literal barrier created to keep people from finger sticking.

The only other thing I can come up with is that a wizard cast a spell on all of our warning signs, with the one of two spells:

Crate Spell
The neon and capitalization don’t matter a whit, for no one who needs to will see this shit.

Or, he changed what people see:

While I’m not willing to completely rule out wizardry, I’m pretty sure it’s Warning Sign Blindness. This is based on the reaction to being told that the little sign they are lifting up, to get a better angle at cramming their hand in the crate, has words on it telling them NOT to do exactly that.

  • “Oh, oops, sorry. Duh.” (My favorite)
  • “This dog is mean?” Yep, see the line of 20+ crates, all with warning signs? All of our dogs are rabid.
  • “Oh, it’s ok. I have a dog” (My least favorite.) Is it that dog? Cause if not, take the lotion out of the fucking basket.

I am writing this because diagnosis is key. If you suspect you may suffer from Warning Sign Blindness, err on the side of caution and assume you’re missing something. Find the nearest employee/authority figure and ask if there are any signs that say you shouldn’t do something. If there are, then at least you can make an informed decision as to whether to become a pain in the ass.**

* You may be thinking “oh, but that’s just a couple instances.” I kid you not, I got both of these pictures within 3 minutes of each other on the same day. It. Never. Ends.
**And, seriously, bless, bless, bless these people. They mean well, really. They are so moved by the sight of these dogs they can’t see anything else. I really do get that – when I’m not there and am thinking about it later.





The Goonies vs Super 8 – A Sign I May Be Ready for Parenthood

Whether to have kids is a much discussed topic in our household. One of my concerns is that I don’t feel like an adult. I still feel like a kid – I don’t know how the world works, I’m not responsible enough (and don’t do enough adult-y things like know how the stock market works), I like the freedom to watch all the violent R-rated movies I want to, and so on.

I’ve “grown” to realize that most people either don’t feel like adults, are actually irresponsible/crazy/just shouldn’t be a parent, or are an adult but still don’t have all their adult bases covered like I expect myself to. “Adult bases covered” sounds like some term from the Hays Code, but I assure you I don’t mean public indecency.

Like most things in my life – I have used Pop Culture to help me understand where I’m at as a person.

We saw Super 8 when it came out this year. It’s about a group of adolescent kids trying to solve a mystery/avoid being eaten about/by an alien. Additionally, one of my favorite movies is The Goonies – it came out when I was roughly 8 years old – which is about a group of adolescent kids trying to find a pirate’s treasure/not be ruthlessly murdered by a trio of ex-cons.

As I was watching Super 8, I was hit with the strangest sensation: I’m not reacting to this movie, which has the same general theme and plot, as I do to The Goonies.**

These are my feelings while watching The Goonies:

Skeleton Piano
You play that skeleton piano until you make it to the treasure or someone gets impaled, there’s a neighborhood at stake!
Troy's Bucket
Don’t go up Troy’s bucket to ensure your safety and let your parents know they don’t need to release an Amber Alert, it’s your time, your time down there! Your parents don’t understand! Obviously y’all battling homicidal maniacs for a pirate treasure is the only viable option to preserve your happy childhoods!
Sloth Love Chunk
Wow, that’s so great that Chunk, an 11 year old boy, offered up his parents’ home and life to a giant, mentally handicapped man-child.

In summary: I identify with the kids. I now know the reason for that is because I saw this movie for the first time when I was a kid, because watching Super 8 was very different:

That girl stole her father’s car? Oh dear, she must come from a troubled home. I hope she doesn’t wreck it because the insurance premiums will go through the roof.
What in the fuck are these parents’ deals? They are setting horrible examples and emotionally neglecting their children. I certainly hope they come around to understand how great their kids are and get themselves together.
You turn around right now, go back to that gym, and find a goddamn doctor! And, many, many other instances of “Be careful;” “That’s not your responsibility, or, shouldn’t be;” and “Oh, babies, it’ll be better once you get out of high school.”

So, if I end up with a kid, I can tell them that a movie about One-Eye Willie’s booty and a movie about a bunch of teens making a zombie movie had something to do with their existence.

**I understand that E.T. is the blueprint for Super 8, but I’ve only seen that movie once, when I was 5 years old. But, I’m sure the identification with/concern for dichotomy exists there as well.

Why the Name Cannibalistic Nerd?

Technically, I’m a geek. Nerds do well in school. However, the candy called Nerds exists. I love Nerds. Especially the little boxes you get around Halloween. Probably because it reminds me of Halloween.

Other than Pixie Stix and that dipping powder, this is the closest thing to standing over the jar and shoveling sugar in your mouth.

Whenever I eat Nerds, my husband points at me and calls me a cannibal. He does the same when I eat shrimp, as I am short. The title Cannibalistic Nerd got in my head and I couldn’t shake it, and thought it sounded better than Cannibalistic Shrimp, and was a better description for me and what I’d probably write about.

And isn’t that kind of what nerds and geeks do? Obsess over what we like and devour it over and over again? And the line between you and the things you like gets blurrier and blurrier, etc.? No? Fine, I’m sticking with the name, though.

In reading up on starting a blog, one of the things is that you’re supposed to have a niche. I actually do have a niche blog – one of the nichiest blogs one could hope for.

I’m thinking, I can go more niche – maybe a blog of nothing but pictures of straw wrappers I compulsively knot when at restaurants.

If they are really long I fold them in half, first.

Or, I can go broad. So, I’m going broad.