If We Treated Teachers Like Professional Athletes

Believe it or not, I really like teachers. Sure, I get a tad frustrated with the school supply shopping list. I've been at this for several years now and I still get confused by the plastic/poly folders with and without pockets and/or prongs. Argh! Honestly, my beef is with Wal-Mart, because they never stock enough YELLOW poly folders WITH pockets AND prongs!!

Sorry, I got off topic there. Back to teachers. I think that they have one of the hardest and thankless jobs (right after motherhood!). Teachers are right up there with saints. Think about it. I don't even want to spend eight hours a day with my kids, and yet this (crazy) person spends the day with not only my kid, but twenty more?? Not to mention the parents a teacher has to put up with. I've been That Parent and I'm fairly mellow. I can only imagine the conversations with the overachievers. And on top of that, he/she does this job for peanuts, personalized wooden apple signs, and sweaty sticky hugs? (Actually, peanuts are expensive, I should say teachers are paid in sunflower seeds, personalized wooden apple signs, and sweaty sticky hugs).

Teachers are some of the most influential people in our kids' lives, but you'd never know that from the way we reward them. Can you imagine if we paid teachers and treated them the same way we treat the athletes America worships?

Key & Peele took this idea and made a brilliant, funny video that is funny and sad all at the same time.

Pro tip: You'll need to watch it twice probably to get all the ticker information running along the bottom and sides and make sure you stick around for the BMW "commercial" at the end

Back to School

School starts Thursday and I am only a little bit excited.  OK, I'm really excited. This will be the first time in almost 8 years that I will have a house to myself all day long.  (The Hubs will be here too, but luckily we each keep to our own "area".)

There is nothing I love more than my alone time.  I absolutely love a quiet house.

I'm talking pretty tough today, because it's only Wednesday.  We'll see how I feel tomorrow.  All week long as we've edged closer to Thursday I've been thinking about Adolpha heading to all day Kindergarten and every now and again I become a blubbering mess.

Life is Hard When You're Six

I don't know about you, but there are so many times in my life I would just love to go back to Kindergarten. I'd love to spend most of my day learning to write my name, coloring pictures of puppies, and singing my heart out in between two recesses, a lunch break, and a rest time. Yesterday when I mentioned my desire to go back to the "easy" life of a six year old, Adolpha let me know that I have a pretty jacked up memory. 

According to Adolpha, life is incredibly hard when you're six. 

She gave me a look that said:

Dog Pedicures

You look like an ass when you walk your bedazzled dog.
Photo: Dog Community
OK, so I already hate the trend right now where everyone paints shit on their nails.  Who needs stupid owls or polka dots?  When did this happen?  What's wrong with pink or a simple French manicure? Why did it have to get so fucking complicated?  Why do we feel the need to bling everything? They're fucking nails.  They help you pick your nose and dig shit out small crevices.  There is no need to make them works of art.

The human nail obsession has been driving me crazy for a while, but today I saw something that pushed me over the edge:  Doggy Pedicures.  Not just a usual toenail clipping or something like that.  Nope.  Dog owners have decided they want their pup's paws to look as ridiculous as their own.  There is not one, but TWO companies, that make nail polish for dogs.  (BTW, I didn't even know a dog needed special nail polish.  If human nail polish isn't good enough for a dog what the fuck are we putting on our nails??)

Jen & Friends' Endless Conversation Loop

A couple days ago I showed you the annoying summer conversations I've been overhearing lately.  I didn't want to you think that my conversations are any better.  They're just not as annoying...to me.  So here's what it would be like if I ran into 2 of my friends at Target, the pool and/or, the movies:

Me:  I'm trying to keep Gomer and Adolpha out of my hair this summer.  I can't get any work done.  They're always bugging me for food and shit.  Gomer!  Put down the Lego set.  You don't need another one!

Sandy:  I know what you mean!  Every time you come to my house Adolpha is asking for food.  Do you ever feed her?  Just kidding.  No I'm not.

I Am Coming to See You!!

Working with People I Want to Punch in the Throat: Cantankerous Clients, Micromanaging Minions, and Other Supercilious Scourges will be released on September 12.

If you've ever toiled away in a cubicle or sat through the third meeting your boss scheduled to plan another meeting, then you can relate to this book. This is the book you'll want to accidentally on purpose leave on the desk of that blowhard in marketing. This is the book you'll just happen to drop next the microwave in the break room hoping that Jan in accounting reads it before she reheats last night's smelly leftovers for lunch. This is the book you'll mail anonymously to your micromanaging boss with certain passages highlighted.

The Punch List:

Company-wide happy hours. I barely want to work with you. I definitely don't want to have a beer with you.

The Ivy Leaguers. You do know every sentence doesn't have to start with, “When I was at Princeton…”?

The martyrs. You get sick days—use one. Stop dragging your sniffling, snorting, coughing, sneezing ass to work and infecting the rest of us. You're not that important.

Advance Praise for Working with People I Want to Punch in the Throat:

Working with People I Want to Punch in the Throat is Office Space meets The Devil Wears Prada.” - Faith Salie, author of Approval Junkie

“I connected with Jen Mann’s book more deeply than I’m comfortable with. It was brilliant and gross and hilarious and heartwarming and then hilarious again. I literally couldn’t put it down. For what it’s worth, the only book before this one that I read in one sitting without a break was Dances with Wolves. Don’t judge me.” - James Breakwell (@XplodingUnicorn), author of Only Dead on the Inside: A Parent’s Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse

The book is coming and I'm hitting the road for a book tour. I want to see you there.

I know, I know. Everyone's busy and life is hectic, but trust me, you're going to regret it if you miss this. We're going to have so much fun. Dare I say a "shitload" of fun? I mean, if I can put on pants and leave the confines of my house to travel around by myself and hope people show up to see me, then surely you can put on pants and drive across the city to join me, right?

Here's the thing, though, I can't go on tour unless I sell enough tickets. I need to buy plane tickets and rent cars and find hotels and bring enough books and I can't do all of that unless enough tickets sell first. So, I need you to buy your ticket today so I can start making my plans. You order tickets through the FB Events links below. Fyllan is one of my sponsors and you can get your ticket through them at a discount (the instructions are on the Event page) or you can order through PayPal link on each page. You get a signed book with each ticket you purchase.

Here is the list that I have so far (I'm adding to it all the time, so check on my Facebook Events page to see if I've added something near you):

September 12: Kansas City

September 20: St. Louis

September 26: Syracuse, NY

October 5: Austin

October 6: Houston

October 10: Chicago

October 11: Ann Arbor, MI (tickets are not required) Books will be available for purchase.

October 14: Lansing, MI (check with the library for ticket information)

October 18: Frederick, MD

October 19: Denver, CO

October 23: Pittsburgh, PA

October 24: Appleton, WI

February 4: Orlando

In the works:

New Jersey
Fairfax, VA

Also, I will be in Louisville, KY on 10/27 meeting with a book club at a private event. If you live in Louisville and can put something together for 10/28, I can be there.

If I'm not coming near you, but you still want a signed book, we can make that happen. Click here to order.

PS - Facebook is really limiting my reach on this one. Would you PLEASE share it and help me spread the word? Thank you!

How to be a REAL Friend

I know this will be hard for many of you to believe, but I don't have many friends.  (This is where you say, Duh!)

I have many acquaintances, but not too many close friends.  It's hard for me to find people who I can stand to be around and who can stand to be around me.

The other night the Hubs and I were lamenting that summer is coming and we don't have anyone to play with other than our 2 or 3 friends who we probably overwhelm and drown with attention.  We realized we probably need another friend or two to take some of the heat before we run off the few we actually have.

Overachieving Elf on the Shelf Mommies

By now we have all heard of the adorable little Elf on the Shelf . Almost everyone I know has one.  Some people even have two!  (Now I'...

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