Tag Archives: humor

“Unna-med” and Other Laughable Anecdotes from My Life

Academically, I’m considered a pretty smart girl. I’m a Phi Beta Kappa, was active in many academic honor societies, and generally got high grades in all my coursework (both in public school and in college). But, despite all this education and all these book smarts, I’m also quite capable of saying (and doing) dumb things, as are we all. Sometimes, there ain’t a drop of sense in my head, as the following anecdotes will show, rather plainly:

Hanging Up a Towel to Dry

One day during the summer I was 10, I had gone up to my uncle and aunt’s house about a half-mile away to swim in their backyard pool with my cousins. We had a great day swimming, and by the time I walked back to my house, my beach towel was completely sodden. I hung the beach towel on the bathroom doorknob when I got in, and promptly forgot about it as I took care of rinsing out my bathing suit and getting a shower to get all the chlorinated water out of my hair.

A few hours later, Mom came downstairs and was incensed to find that I’d left the beach towel hanging up to drip slightly-sandy water all over the bathroom floor. “What were you thinking?” she asked, showing me the dirty towel and the yucky bathroom floor. “You should have put the towel straight into the washer if it was dirty!”

“But Mom,” I argued back, “I had to hang it up to let it dry before I could wash it!”

…It made sense in my head… V_V

The “Shortcut”

A few years ago, I was attending college on a campus full of one-way streets. I had heard a lot of my friends complaining about them, saying that the path to one of the more centrally-located dorms was a particularly large pain in the posterior.

“Well, I never have any problems getting to that dorm,” I replied one time. “I found a shortcut.”

There was indeed a street that wrapped back around the dorm in question, and was easy to get to from the side of campus that we always approached from. All you had to do was turn left when you got past the cafeteria building and looped up toward the infirmary, and you could get to the back of the dorm really easily.

I had been going that way for as long as I could remember. Thus, I was shocked when a campus police cart pulled up behind me one day, its lights and horn going, as I was leaving campus for the weekend (since it was not only a shortcut to the dorm, but to the main road out of campus). I pulled to one side of the road and rolled down my window, expecting him to say I had a burned-out taillight or something.

“What are you doing?” he asked as he approached the window.

“I’m heading out of campus,” I said, gesturing forward as I spoke.

“Didn’t you see the signs?” he asked, and he pointed across the street, to a “Wrong Way” sign facing in my direction. Apparently, I had disregarded that one…just like I’d disregarded the four other “Wrong Way” signs I had already passed. My shortcut, it appeared, was indeed handy–but it was illegal.

(And don’t worry about my “record”–the campus police officer let me go, after I explained myself, with a laugh and a warning not to do it again!) XD

And now for the piece de resistance…

Hey Guys, Come Check This Weird Name Out!

When I was in 9th grade, I was taking Physical Science, and the teacher had a map and chart up of history-making hurricanes displayed on the wall near his desk. Having always been fascinated by the study of weather, I came in early one day and busied myself studying all the hurricanes listed on the map–where they hit, what time of year, how strong they were, etc.

One hurricane in particular caught my eye–it had struck southern Texas in 1899, and was named “Unna-med” (I mentally pronounced it “Oo-nah-mehd”). “WOW!” I thought. “That must have been a really active hurricane season–they got all the way to the U’s in the alphabet!”

Then I wondered what the name “Oo-nah-mehd” meant. “Wonder if it’s based on an ancient Aztec or Mayan word?” I mused. “It’s a really unusual name for a hurricane, but being that it hit so close to northern Mexico, they might have gone with an international name rather than an Americanized name.”

My head buzzed with this all day. I came home and told Mom and Dad about my discovery, and they were curious as well. I told them that I was going to school tomorrow to show the other kids what I’d learned and maybe ask my teacher about it. (Remember, kids, this was in 1999 before the Internets was the phenomenon that it is today. My family didn’t even HAVE internet at home yet, so I couldn’t go home and look it up–if I could have, I could have saved myself a fail. XD)

Anyhow, I got to school the next day and excitedly told all my friends about the crazily-named hurricane I’d found. They wanted to see the map, and I told them to come with me to my science classroom so I could show them. We were all pumped.

I tore up the stairs to the second-floor science classroom, put my stuff down at the desk, and went over to the map, easily finding the aforementioned storm name. I looked…and there it was. “Unnamed.”

“Where’s the cool storm name?” one of my friends asked, as she ran into the room after me.

All I could do was stand there and laugh, nervously. “Um…yeah, you’re not going to believe this, but…I totally misread the name,” I said, sheepishly.

“Wait, huh?” my other friend asked. Then she looked at the map, and where my finger was pointing.

“Unnamed?” she asked, furrowing her brow. “But you said it was…”

“Oo-nah-mehd,” I finished, and we all burst into giggles. Yes, that’s right, I had just figured out an exotic new pronunciation for the word “unnamed.” Fail complete, facepalm in progress. XD

And Yes…All These Stories Are True

Embarrassingly true. I think God’s “common sense” jar was empty the day I came through. XD But I have to be honest about myself (both my awesome moments and my laughable fails). Sometimes, it pays to remember we’re all human, and laugh about it. ^_^

Bathroom Epiphanies


Time on the toilet isn’t just for aimless contemplation over constipation!

Sorry, I just had to use that line. XD

Well, if I can get over my giggles long enough to write this post, I’ll share with you some of the accomplishments I’ve achieved while, uh, occupied with other matters. You wouldn’t believe how some quiet time (relatively speaking) can help you solve problems in other areas of your life!

The Infamous “Layout Fix”

One afternoon, I was having a terrible problem with spacing in one of my web designs; a divided layer in my layout insisted on ending up at the bottom of the layout rather than up with its friends and neighbors closer to the top. As invariably happens when I’m struggling with a problem, my frustration level soared, which sent me to the restroom within minutes. (I swear, as long as I do web design, I will never need Dulcolax, ever. LOL)

As I sat there, reading randomly in a magazine I was keeping in the bathroom for such purposes, it hit me (not literally): had I remembered to set the padding to 0px for that particular divided layer? Being rather new to the concept of CSS padding as I was, I wasn’t used to taking that into consideration. My frustration level began to settle, as did my stomach–I had hope of fixing the issue.

Once I was finished, I headed straight back to the computer and checked, and nope, I hadn’t set the padding. The default padding for divided layers is 2px, and that 2px was JUST enough to throw off my design. I typed in “padding: 0px;”, and watched my layout fix itself, with joy.

Inspired by Necessity: A New Recipe

I was busy in the kitchen in my apartment up near college one evening, trying to figure out something to cook for dinner that wasn’t ramen noodles or a microwave meal again. I didn’t want to chance screwing up my meal by burning something (as I am so wont to do), but I wanted something “comfort-food-y,” something yummy and warm, because it was so darned cold outside that it made my insides cramp just thinking about driving out in it. Not to mention that my poor tummy had been upset most of the day, anyway.

Well, as you might have guessed, I ended up in a position to sit and think for a while. This time, I was without a magazine (horror of horrors!), and so all I could do was think…and I ended up thinking about recipes for comfort food. (Strange place to be thinking about food, I know, but there I was!) Eventually I found myself thinking about what Mom used to fix when I was little and had an upset tummy, and a memory of a wonderful chicken-flavored casserole came to mind. Mind you, I didn’t remember what all was in it, specifically, but I remembered the creamy yumminess of what tasted like cream of chicken soup, mixed with some kind of stuffing crumbs and white meat chicken, all baked and comfortingly warm.

Once I was finished, I called home and asked, “What was that awesome casserole you used to fix when I was home sick from school, Mom?” She fetched the recipe and read it off to me over the phone, and with new motivation I braved the bitter weather long enough to get the ingredients. About an hour later, I was enjoying warm memories and tummy comfort.

The Super Epic Final Exam-Finishing Visit

I was one of the unfortunate students who caught the stomach bug going around the dorm room one fall semester, and wouldn’t you know it, I had a huge final paper in one of my English classes to do and turn in the next day. How much had I done on it? Umm…yeah, let’s just say they don’t call me “The Procrastinator” for nothing.

So, I was sitting in front of my laptop, alternating between typing, backspacing, checking Facebook, and groaning…and then, I realized that just verbally expressing my discomfort was not going to work anymore. Speed was necessary–but so was my final paper, which I was currently very stuck on. Thinking quickly, I grabbed up my laptop and headed toward relief.

Without my ethernet cable connection (this was 2004, so wireless internet in the dorms was still a thing of the future), I was utterly without Internet, but the session still proved to be very, uh, fruitful; I suddenly remembered I had some additional points to make in my final paper, which I had forgotten in the throes of the last cramp. It almost seemed as if my current situation helped unbind my brain, and I found myself with a lot more to type about the pieces of literature I was studying. I took all the time I needed (both meanings intended), and ended up finishing the final paper entirely. More astonishing than writing it in the bathroom was the fact that I was actually DONE with a final paper more than an hour before it was due!

The Moral of the Story

Time spent thinking is never wasted, no matter where it happens! ROFL!

Little Doodles of Life

I’ve never considered myself a visual artist, especially when it comes to drawing people. Most of my drawings of people in early school were of alien visitors, or at least that’s what they looked like. And yet, sometimes, I would do AMAZING drawings of a foot or a hand, for instance; then, I would try to recreate that amazing set of strokes, and fail miserably. The other foot or hand always looked like it was in the process of mutating. Sigh.

This sketch of myself ended up okay, except for the mutated rutabaga of my nose. Oh, and the anime-style eyes didn’t quite turn out like I envisioned, though they match up pretty close.

Generally, I’ve always tried to draw life exactly as I saw it, down to the smallest detail. Perhaps that’s where I fail as a visual artist–I’m too focused on making the shoelaces look right, and I barely spend any time on the face or the rest of the clothing, so to speak. (Either that or I’m too A.D.D./impatient, LOL) I always enjoyed crafting the little details and making them look cool and realistic. Unfortunately, those little details I worked so hard on usually faded into a big-picture backdrop of excrement on paper.

Doodles Can Be Art, Too!

Even though I had no confidence in my drawing ability, I started doodling randomly in late middle school, needing something creative to do with my hands while I listened to a lecture. (For some reason, not having anything to do with my hands while I listen drives me batty.) Little by little, delicate but simple flowers and vines spiraled down the red vertical lines of my notebook paper…and even little faces appeared at the top of the page and spoke volumes with just a pair of eyes, a pair of eyebrows, and a mouth. I found myself enjoying the fruits of my distracted labor, even as I jotted down notes from the class discussions and lecture.

I sketched the original, small drawing of this flower drawing on the back of my church bulletin one day. I re-sketched it later, expanding it to a larger size (with limited success), and scanned it in, rendering this picture.

Now, many years after middle school, I am a well-practiced doodler. Any scrap of paper that’s lying around close to a pencil or pen is fair game when I’m bored or having to be still and listen–the backs of church bulletins, for instance, end up being doodle pads as well as note space. (Yes, I admit it, I’m an adult and I STILL doodle during church sometimes…) Through this and other absent-minded doodling sessions, I’ve slowly started expressing myself through the art of the tiny drawing–the itty-bitty scene or teeny little face that speaks more than a huge picture of mine ever could. Since I’m good at the tiny details, why not capitalize on that, right? (Also, tiny pictures don’t take forever, LOL)

This itty-bitty tree was part of a design I did for my dad’s Father’s Day card this year…turned out pretty well!

These doodles have lately gotten some positive feedback–people comment on my little drawings, saying “Oh wow! That tree is just perfect!” or “Ha ha, that stick figure guy looks funny!” I never realized how artistic doodling could be–not when I’m just puttering about with a pencil and drawing stuff that makes me giggle. It is a great way to relieve stress, comment about what’s going on, or just make myself or others laugh, and I don’t have to be exactly perfect (which is good for my blood pressure :P). But that, in itself, makes it art; it communicates with others about the world I see.

Do You Doodle?

Have you ever tried your hand at doodling as an art form? Tell me in the comments!