Top 30 things to do when bored at Wal-Mart

I got this email a couple of times already and I am sure that some of you have, too, but it’s just such a good list that I had to put it up. I didn’t copy the whole thing; I just put my top 30 from a list of 74. I couldn’t whitle down any more than this!

So here would be my top choices of what to do at Wal-Mart if I’m bored:

  1. As the cashier runs your purchase over the scanner, look mesmerized and say, “Wow, magic!”
  2. Challenge other customers to duels with tubes of gift-wrap.
  3. Dart around suspiciously while humming the theme from Mission Impossible.
  4. Go to the food court, buy a drink, and ask if they can put a little umbrella in it.
  5. Drape a blanket around your shoulders and run around saying, “I’m Batman. Come Robin, to the Batcave.”
  6. Follow people through the aisles, staying about 5 feet behind them. Do this until they leave the store.
  7. Go into a fitting room, shut the door and wait a while and then yell loudly “There’s no toilet paper in here!”
  8. Hide in a clothing rack and when people browse through, say “PICK ME! PICK ME!”
  9. Hold indoor shopping cart races.
  10. Leave Cheerios in lawn and garden, pillows in the pet section, etc.
  11. Make a trail of tomato juice on the floor leading to the restrooms.
  12. Make up nonsense products and ask employees if there are any in stock. (i.e.: Shnerples)
  13. Move “Caution: Wet Floor” signs to carpeted areas.
  14. Randomly throw things over into neighboring aisles.
  15. Ride a display bicycle through the store; claim you are taking it for a test drive.
  16. Say things like, “Would you be so kind as to direct me to your Twinkies.”
  17. Set all the alarm clocks to go off at ten-minute intervals throughout the day.
  18. Set up a “Valet Parking” sign in front of the store.
  19. Set up a tent in the camping department and tell other shoppers you’ll invite them in if they bring pillows from the bed department.
  20. Take shopping carts for the express purpose of filling them and stranding them at strategic locations.
  21. Take up an entire aisle in toys by setting up a full-scale battle with G.I. Joe vs. X-men.
  22. Test the brushes and combs in cosmetics.
  23. Tune all the radios to polka stations; then turn them off and turn the volume up to full blast.
  24. Walk up to an employee and tell him/her in an official tone, ‘Code 3′ in Housewares and see what happens.
  25. Walk up to complete strangers and say, “Hi. I haven’t seen you in so long.” etc. See if they play along.
  26. When a clerk asks if they can help you, begin to cry and ask, “Why can’t you people just leave me alone?”
  27. When an announcement comes over the loud speaker, assume the fetal position and scream “NO! NO! It’s those voices again!!!”
  28. When someone steps away from his or her cart to look at something, quickly make off with it without saying a word.
  29. When there are people behind you, walk really slowly, especially in thin aisles.
  30. While walking through the clothing department, ask yourself loud enough for all to hear, “Who buys this crap anyway?!”

P!nk’s “So What”

First of all, does the fact that P!nk writes her name with an exclamation mark means that there is a click in her name? And does that mean that her name is, in fact, “P-click-nk”? And if so, how in the world do you pronounce that?

But odd spelling and questionable early hair color choice aside, I love P!nk. Her most recent song, So What, has been in my main playlist since it came out and I listen to it at least a couple of times a day. And for once, I love the video clip even more:

In 2006, P!nk came out with another memorable video clip for her song Stupid girls. For those of you who don’t remember it, here it is:

While I respect P!nk for doing what she wants to do rather than what she is told to do, that I love her music and absolutely adored the two videoclips posted above, I’m a little disappointed that she doesn’t use the momentum created by their success (I’m assuming So What will have the same success as Stupid Girls) to raise awareness on important social issues.

For example, Stupid Girls shows us, in a humorous way, how ridiculous some of the social expectations for girls are. I also like the fact that she does it while looking good – which gives the message that doing what you want rather than blindly following social expectations doesn’t mean rejecting all of it, but rather picking and choosing what you wish to follow. We tend to portray feminists as badly dressed women with terrible hair; here P!nk shows us that doesn’t have to be the case.

The So What video clip is, in my mind, even more brilliant. In a world that tends to over-dramatize everything, P!nk seems to have taken on her recent separation from her husband in stride (Yes, that is actually him in the video!). We see how on one hand, she portrays feelings of anger and failure as normal (who can forget the scene in the clip where P!ink is sawing through the trunk of the tree where her initials and those of her ex’ are carved, only to have it almost crush her poor neighbor?), and yet on the other, she shows that those feelings don’t have to give way to irrational behavior in real life (have you heard anything in tabloids about Pink lately?).

The challenge doesn’t seem to be bringing such subjects up, but channeling them into long-term discourses that will lead to action, so that irrational over-dramatization and ridiculous social expectations can disappear, only to appear in video clips and movies.

Until then, watch out for falling trees.

Pictures taken from P!ink’s official website.

Book review: The Friday Night Knitting Club (Kate Jacobs)

The reviewing bug has bit me in recent weeks; I find myself posting comments all over forums and blogs about the various books I’ve read and movies I’ve seen. So I decided to give regularly scheduled reviews a try; that way, I can share the good things I’ve experienced with my readers, and help them avoid the ones that still regularly give me the shivers.

About a week ago, I was bored and walked by a book store. Not a good combination; my feet forced me inside and the next thing I knew, I walked out with the equivalent of a week’s rent in books. One of them was purely an impulse buy; I love knitting and couldn’t resist the title The Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacob.

I also happen to like well-written chick flicks with some substance, and this book seemed to have substance. The story revolves around the owner of a yarn shop, Georgia Walker. When she found out thirteen years ago that she was pregnant, Georgia thought her only viable option was to move back to her parents house. A chance encounter with Anita, a older widower, changes her luck as Georgia realizes that she can bank on her knitting talent to make a living for herself. From knitting on commission, Georgia opens her own yarn store, Walker and Daughter, where a group of women start meeting every Friday evening to knit. They soon become close friends and, while each admires the other for the seemingly perfect life she leads, they come to realize that none of them have a perfect life and they all need one another to survive.

The book is well written, easy to read and yes, with quite some substance. The storylines are touching and, because each character is at a different point in their life, every reader will find at least one character they can identify with.

A disappointing aspect is the relative lack of depth in character development. While the reader gets to know the characters pretty well, I didn’t feel like I knew them enough to get attached to them. I was interested enough in their lives to see where they were going and finished the book – but I wish the character development had been such that I would have felt their sorrow and joy more acutely, as their friend rather than a passive observer.

The other thing that I didn’t quite like about the writing is the constant changing of point of view (POV). One moment we are in the POV of one character then we jump to another and only a few lines later to yet another. I have the impression this might have in part caused the relative lack of depth described earlier. Choosing one POV per chapter and analyzing everything from it would not only have increased its consistency, but also aroused our curiosity by not revealing everything about everyone; it would have made the story less of a chronicle and more of a diary.

I would still recommend this book to anyone looking for a book with substance, but for readers looking for more depth, I would encourage them to take the time to digest each major event.

The book has an official website, but you’ll probably find the author’s official website more interesting. I , for one, prefer her blog.

Enjoy, and do drop a line if you read the book!