Tag Archives: responsibility

Family Planning

Given the various issues we experienced during my last pregnancy and in the past year, Eric and I thought it would be wise and responsible to make a list of factors we need to very seriously consider before having a second child.

Stiles 3 pencils.gif

Here’s the final list:

  1. Not birthing it during Outer Banks family vacation.







Learn From Your Mother’s Mistakes

Being pregnant has given me a lot of time to reflect on all the stupid shit I did as a kid and to wonder if my daughter is going to be as poor a decision maker as I was.

For instance, one time in high school I smoked the world’s most unnecessarily large and potent amount of weed. I definitely could have stopped at one bong hit and been perfectly pleasantly stoned, but I guess I thought if one was fun, 8 would be REALLY fun, because everything fun is better when you overdo it by 7 times.

I was an honors student.

I have no explanation for this.

I was dropped off at home by a sober friend (I think/hope?) around midnight, and instead of going straight to bed, I chose to sit in the bright, incriminating lights of the kitchen and eat a tub of Breyer’s vanilla ice cream with a large wooden cooking spoon, straight from the tub. I must have been making absurdly loud slobbering noises and dropping the spoon one or 12 too many times, because at some point, my Dad wandered downstairs from his bedroom to see what was going on.

I didn’t even attempt to act like a normal human, I just proceeded to dip my big ass spoon in the tub o’ Breyers and stare at the kitchen TV, ice cream trickling down my chin, while Dad carried on what I think was supposed to be a conversation with me. To this day I have no idea what he said, but if he didn’t realize I was stoned out of my damn mind, well, that’s just sad for him.

To make matters worse, I was so high that I ended up vomiting multiple times in the middle of the night, and then oversleeping the next day, when I was supposed to be at my parents’ friends’ house babysitting their kids. I was a total no-show for the job, with essentially no excuse other than “I took 7 too many bong rips, by accident.” I lost out on a ton of money and so badly pissed off the family, who had been my steady source of income since middle school, that they never asked me to work for them again.

So all this is to say, for the love of god, I pray my kid makes better choices than I did.

I mean– Breyers vanilla?

Aim higher, baby girl. When you’re stoned as shit, you shove that oversized spoon into something worthwhile.

The world is your oyster.



For the past year, Jeremy has been asking me to post the following voicemail from Zack, because it is absurd.

I personally agree that it’s hilarious, but I felt it was funny only if you actually know Zack, (and all his “Zack-isms”), and know Jeremy (and all his “What-the-fuck-is-wrong-with-you-isms.”) Bottom line– I’m not sure it’s entertaining if you don’t know our family.

“Dude. You could say that about literally 100% of your posts about us,” Jeremy replied.

Ok yeah.

So here you go.

A few things to know before listening:

  1. Zack called Jeremy and left this voicemail after coming home to Potomac, getting into Jeremy’s (constantly filled with endless amounts of crap) car and finding several overdue parking tickets. This was at the time when Jeremy was living in the basement. So let’s just say the family was on high “will-this-kid-ever-get-his-shit-together?!” alert. Jeremy has since moved out of the basement, so the answer to that question is “sort of.”
  2. I am not endorsing or condoning the word “retard.” I wish Zack had chosen any other greeting. That being said, this is the only time I’ve heard the term used and thought “Yeah. That works.” But if you’re offended, try replacing it with “asshat,” or “douchecanoe.”
  3.  Zack is the younger brother (and youngest in the family). Keep that in mind as you listen. It makes his “lecture” subtly more hilarious.
  4. Chelsey was Jeremy’s girlfriend at the time. She was phenomenal, and my whole family loved her (that has nothing to do with the voicemail, I just fucking miss her.)
  5. Hang in there ’til the end. The casual, happy-to-help closing is gold.





This morning I woke up with an incredible sense of purpose, and vowed that I was going to check at least five things off my never-ending to do list. I had the energy, I had the drive, and I had a rare, large block of free time after work to accomplish it all. Today was the day!

And then– because I guess the universe hates me– suddenly, out of NOWHERE, on the day I FINALLY have the chance to be super productive, this totally crazy thing happened where I yawned and instead did nothing.

I can’t win.



There Are TWO Lessons Here

I initially resisted posting this story because I am legitimately afraid my parents will read it and immediately send someone to come to NYC, pack me up with all my belongings, and bring me home to live in their basement because clearly I have not earned the right to be an adult citizen living on my own in society.

Regardless, here we go. (Mostly because I know they already have a kid in the basement).

On Saturday, I decided I needed a new cocktail dress. I have a couple weddings coming up this summer, and I’m tired of all my clothes and need something new (in this case, “tired of all my clothes” = “I got fatter. Nothing fits.”) I decided this would be a good opportunity to use the $600 in tutoring cash I had stored up in my nightstand (nope, this isn’t even the irresponsible part) and go pay for a new dress in cash.

Like a hooker.

I grabbed the wad of cash, stuffed it in a jewelry bag labeled “Charm and Chain” that had once held a pair of costume earrings, shoved it in my purse, and headed out on the town (again. Like a hooker).

I ended up finding the perfect dress for $150, because it turns out I’m not quite as classy as I thought.

So I had $450 left when I headed back home with my new purchase. On the way, I passed Wankel’s Hardware store and realized I needed a dust buster because yes, sometimes I clean. (Full disclosure: I recently moved my couch off the wall to try to locate a lost earring, and discovered a mountain of sesame seeds behind it. What can I say, I love a good flatbread. Not exactly sure why I can’t seem to land them in my mouth, though. Eating is hard, guys!)

Anyway, I went into Wankels, purchased a $30 dust buster with the cash, and left.

Fast forward two days later. Yes, TWO days later. It suddenly dawns on me that I never put the bag of cash back in the nightstand. So I go into my purse, where, lo and behold, underneath the Advil, Prozac, chewed gum balled up in wrappers, two sets of headphones (why? I don’t know), 4 tampons, several stray Junior Mints and at least 3 Chipotle receipts there is….nothing.

The bag of money is gone.

$420. In cash. I lost A BAG OF CASH.

That’s not something real humans do in real life. That’s something Phoebe Buffet does on an episode of “Friends,” as the canned laugh track plays because the live audience refuses to chuckle at something that is THAT FUCKING STUPID.

So after breathing into a paper bag for 5 minutes (except I didn’t have a paper bag, so I used an empty wine bottle, and let me assure you that does not have the same effect), I decided to retrace my steps.

I went back to BCBG, where I had to sheepishly say to the cashier, “So this might seem like a crazy question but….did you guys happen to find a wad of cash in a black jewelry bag?”  Needless to say, the impossibly skinny bitch behind the counter was NOT friendly in her response. “Ummmm….NO….”

Alright. Fuck you.

I walked out, head in hands, sweating, and broken out head to toe in hives.

Then to Wankels, where I almost didn’t even go because I was so mortified by the BCBG exchange. But you know what they say– “When a fucking idiot in Rome….keep being a fucking idiot in Rome.” Or something.

So I went into the hardware store, swallowed every ounce of pride I could muster (which was a challenge, as I had zero left), and asked the same humiliating question– “Um, this might seem crazy but I came in here the other day, paid for something with cash, and I think maybe I left a bag of cash on your counter. It was in a black jewelry bag. Have you seen it?”

The cashier stared at me wide-eyed. “That was YOU?!”

I could barely respond. “Oh my god, you know what I’m talking about?”

Her: “Yeah, we have the bag in the back.” (then, screaming over her shoulder): “Mike! Jason! Sandra! James! You won’t believe this! The girl who left the cash! She’s HERE!”

Then, faster than my whole family assembles when Dad offers to buy us dinner, the entire staff of Wankles Hardware congregated by the cash register. They stared at me, kind but smirking.

Me: “Hi! Hi yes that’s me. I wish I could say this is the dumbest thing I’ve ever done in my life…but that wouldn’t even be true.”

They all laughed. And then told me how lucky I am. And then, I’m pretty sure, snuck a photo of me that they later posted on Instagram with the caption “Village Idiot.”

After some friendly-but-mortified banter, a burly bearded man escorted me to a shady back room area (where I gleefully followed him, as the tone of bad decision making had already been set) and handed me the bag of cash.

Every single dollar was there.

So there are two lessons here, guys.

1) Be as dumb as you want. Everything will turn out fine.

2) Shop at Wankels.

That’s it. There are no more lessons.


Lessons I Learn From My Dad

Dad was here this weekend and, over some wine, recounted the story of how he was being groomed for the family business, but decided, most irresponsibly, to skip the business boards and instead go to a basketball game with his friends. He thought he could just take a make-up exam, but he was wrong. So, on a whim, he decided to go to law school instead. He then became a very successful lawyer and discovered a profession he loves.

So the lesson here is that if you ditch your responsibilities, a better opportunity will simply fall into your lap. So just be as flaky as possible and it’ll all work out.

Or something about a mix of serendipity, hard work, forging your own path, and opening yourself up to endless possibilities.

I don’t know I was drunk.