Category Archives: Humor

Bus Politics, or the Hierarchy of Seating Arrangements

So Bug has been riding the bus home from school for the first time ever. When he hopped off that very first day, I was standing faithfully on the street corner waiting for him, and also wrenching Bean away from squirrels, dog poop, and passing cars. (See? We don’t need a dog!)

I think I was making a bigger deal out of riding the bus than he did. I asked him who he sat with, and where he sat. I was surprised when he – a mere third grader – said he sat in the back.

Maybe things have changed since I was a kid, because I distinctly remember the back of the bus being for the bigger, cooler kids. My kid is awfully cool, but his age puts him in the middle of the bus, not the very back. Maybe middle-back TOPS.

Unless there has been a dramatic shift in bus politics.

When I was a kid, the very front two seats were the time-out seats. I was placed there more than once because Ms. Laverne could hear my voice carry from the very back. I was probably flirting and/or pencil-fighting. Make no mistake, I am small but mighty.

We made the babies sit in the front, and it progressed down that sticky aisle chronologically. And even in the very back there was a hierarchy. Only THE coolest kids sat on that one long bench that stretched the width of the bus. You know, the ones who weren’t afraid to flip off passing cars, or hold up sheets of looseleaf with bad words written on them.

I was never a last-seat-in-the-back sitter. I never made it to that far.

I went to a nerd school (the best school in my hometown, but you know how it is) from the time I was in sixth grade, but the problem was, we had to ride the bus with the regular public school kids in our neighborhood. I might have been super cool in nerd school (after all, I was voted Friendliest in the 9th Grade with the yearbook to prove it, so you be the judge) but it didn’t quite transfer over to the regular kids.

Although, it might have had less to do with going to nerd school and more with the fact that I used to sing Disney songs at the top of my lungs. (A Whole New World was a fan favorite.)

Should I also tell you guys that I had befriended my junior high bus driver Mr. Jones to the point of bringing him a Tupperware full of chicken adobo because during one of our many conversations he mentioned how much he liked Filipino food? That would be overkill, wouldn’t it?

So are we all on the same page here? Were the politics of seating the same on your buses? And more importantly, should I be concerned or proud that my third grader is already a back-of-the-busser?



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The All-Star Challenge

Remember the 1992 U.S. Olympic basketball team, dubbed “The Dream Team”? Remember how they went undefeated in the Olympics and won the gold medal?

Now remember how they actually lost their very first game together when they scrimmaged a bunch of college kids? And how Coach K believes head coach Chuck Daly purposefully threw the game? And how losing to a bunch of snot-nosed kids made the Dream Team that much better and more of a team instead of a bunch of giant egos used to posting triple-doubles? Are you impressed with my basketball knowledge yet?

What a story.

Hey, guess what. I’m on a Blogging All-Star Team. And I need you to vote for us. One day of voting and we’re holding on, but we’re up against Jon Acuff as Power Forward, Bryan Allain playing Point Guard, Carlos Whitaker and Tyler Stanton in Center…

I feel a lot like that collegiate team trying not to stare at the NBA all-stars, reminding myself not to ask for their autographs when someone is up for a free throw.

Basically, this metaphor just broke down, and I just need you to go here and vote for Team Ricky.

A vote for Team Ricky is a vote for Olympic Gold Medals. Remember, voting takes place all week and you can vote once per day (per electronic device, but is that cheating?).

Plus, my cartoon self is ADORABLE. Really, she is.


Filed under Humor

A Letter to Benny

Dear Benny “The Jet” Rodriguez,

Right? Right.

So. We meet again.

I was ten years old when you first stole my heart, kind of like the way you stole home. And here we are again, rekindling that long-forgotten flame.

It’s my husband’s fault. Weird, right?

He just HAD to go out and buy The Sandlot, introducing it to my seven-year-old, a kid who has watched it every single day for the past four days. The same kid who, after watching it for the third time, came crashing down the stairs wearing a pair of ragged jeans, a white tee, and an unbuttoned flannel shirt yelling, “I’m gonna go play some ball, Mom!” The same kid who, after I gently suggested he change into something more appropriate for 85 degree weather, protested, “I’M FINE, MOM.”

Benny, I think you’ve won my son over too. So, you know, if you ever became his stepdad, I think he’d be all right with that.

Not only were you the best ball player in the valley; you were also kind. The moment you tossed your old glove to that Level 7 Weenie, that total square Scotty Smalls, I fell, and I fell hard.

But that wasn’t the last of it, was it, Benny?

You also hit a pop fly DIRECTLY into his glove as he stood out in center field, just to give the kid some confidence. His blockhead stepdad couldn’t teach him to play catch in half an hour, and yet you managed to do it in thirty seconds.

Plus? You pickled the Beast. AFTER a visit from The Great Bambino. The Great Bambino doesn’t exactly appear to just anyone.

But then you had to grow up and into that mustache. Benny, may I just say…Ew. And that’s pretty rich coming from a 29-year-old writing a love letter to a kid in PF Flyers.

So I’ll just pretend I’m ten years old again, and you didn’t grow up, and we’ll play baseball beneath the glow of 4th of July fireworks, and together we will eagerly wait for the next time that fart smeller Phillips is dumb enough to challenge the sandlot boys again.


Jessica “The Butt” Buttram


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Good-Bye, My Friend

My good friend Clay Morgan is killing off his site today. A few weeks ago, he asked a bunch of us Internet Personalities to throw him a funeral, which is happening TODAY. Please don’t miss this.

There’s music, obituaries, search bombs, That’s What She Saids, expandable bat wings (where can I get some of those? I’m asking), and nudity.

And I offered Clay a super long letter read aloud in my stupid Euro-oppressive accent.

SO, head over there and see what everyone has to say about behind its back because you know it’s dead and stuff. And see if you can find a toddler shoe, a toy civil war musket, and a purple Lego in my video, because I totally forgot to clean up before shooting that stupid thing.


Filed under Humor

Spring, We Need to Chat


Every year it happens.

Allergy Season.

Pretty, right? Not when it’s coating my snotter.

It’s why we have commercials with cartoon bees mourning their imposed separation from flowers on CONSTANT ROTATION. It’s why we have at LEAST a thousand different spokespeople living now Claritin Clear.

(HAH. As if Claritin is any match for Tennessee in the Spring. Tennessee in the Spring LAUGHS in the face of antihistamines. Tennessee in the Spring steals Claritin’s lunch money AND Air Jordans, and then later, when they run into each other at the YMCA while on summer break from college, Tennessee in the Spring will steal Claritin’s girlfriend.)

But knowing that it’s basically a rite of passage to summer for roughly 98% of America doesn’t make it any easier.

You guys, Spring is trying to pollinate me, and it hasn’t even bought me dinner yet.

My esophagus is coated with dirty yellow pollen, I CAN FEEL IT. My sinuses are swollen shut. I’ve even called the number on the Afrin box (1-800-317-2165) to ask their customer service department what they mean EXACTLY by “Use for NO MORE than three days.” Like, three days straight, right? What if I only use it at night, does that mean I can actually use it for six days? What if I use it for three days, and then take a day off? Does the three-day count start all over? Come on, Afrin, what REALLY happens if I use it for more than three days?

(For the record, I didn’t call during business hours, so the jury’s still out.)

And because I’m a mouth-breather, I can’t pronounce the letter m – they all just sound like b’s. As in, Happy Bother’s Day! I love you, Bob! Can I have a Nubber Three Cobbo with a Bountain Dew?


Spring, you’re a dirt bag.

Do you have allergies? How’s your snot output been? Honestly, what’s the worst that can happen if I substance-abuse Afrin?


Filed under Humor

Advice to My Younger Self

Obviously, I can’t go back in time and give advice to my younger self. (YET.)

But if I could, here are three pieces I would tell my younger self, at three certain times in my younger self’s life.

1. Don’t give that three-page love letter to that boy. Actually, you should probably lose his phone number indefinitely.

2. When your dorm’s RA asks if you want to grab something to eat, he doesn’t mean it to be friendly and helpful to you, the new freshman. He means it as a date. Don’t go on that date. He will bring you to meet his parents, and it will be painfully awkward.

3. Please double-check the Send list on that email. Reply To All means exactly that.

Those are just three of the gut-twisting humiliations I have suffered in my life. Forget what they say about “making me who I am.” As soon as those nerds at NASA invent time travel, those are the three top moments I’m planning on revisiting. Even if they warn us against “meddling with the space-time continuum.” I’M A REBEL, Y’ALL.

What are your three moments? I’m hoping they’re as bad as mine.


Filed under Humor

Killer Tribes Mash Up

Killer Tribes exceeded expectations. And my expectations were PRETTY astronomical.

I’m still digesting everything I heard from all of the phenomenal speakers; that post is still being written.

In the meantime, I thought I would share a MUCH less meaningful post about some truly meaningful people. I’m talking about those I can now call by name, or even on the phone if I wanted to, as opposed to calling them by their Twitter handle or blog address.

You guys. YOU GUYS. Killer Tribes had its own Brat Pack. I think it was actually a brilliant plan to combat the inevitable awkwardness. Because I walked into the Friday night meet-up and had an intricately long conversation with the barista because I didn’t recognize anyone yet because everyone’s faces were bigger than their Twitter avatars and I was already staring inappropriately long (I almost asked someone to look slightly to the left and down while smiling, just to be sure). I was kind of a jittery wreck wearing an outfit my mom picked out and hoping my deodorant was still working. (Note: it didn’t last all night. Sorry, friends.)

Who are the Killer Tribes Brat Pack?

Jared Hollier. Clay Morgan. Tyler Tarver. Chad Gibbs. Knox McCoy. Joseph Craven.

I’m almost positive that I shook their hands, despite my disclaimer that I hug a lot. Or maybe in spite of. Hey…I MET THEM ALL. And you guys, I know you are just RAGING in jealousy. All I have to say is, Killer Tribes 2013. WRITE IT DOWN.

Some Brat Pack Highlights: Jared invited me to kidnap his kids (the older one likes fruit snacks). Clay gave me Kinder Eggs via Leanne Shirtliffe and said he likes to touch people (don’t deny that happened, Clayford). Tyler sat beside me during Tamára’s breakout session and liked my notebook (it wasn’t a Trapper Keeper). Chad and I shared no less than a few War Eagles! and he signed my copy of God & Football (including an inscription to my kid). Knox COMPLETELY butchered the Troy-and-Abed handshake (and is FAR less cranky than his internet persona – I hope I didn’t just blow up your spot). Joseph carried a hug ALL THE WAY FROM AMANDA IN CANADA just for me (and has TERRIBLE handwriting).

The first person who came up to me and said hi was the one and only Sharideth. SHE EVEN HUGGED ME, despite warning that she’s not a hugger. I felt like I was hugging the Most Popular Girl in School.

The second person? Oh, just Sarah Mae. AND she said I looked cute. AND I blurted out that my mom dressed me because I was nervous to meet her. (My mom didn’t dress me because I was nervous to meet her, I blurted it out because I was nervous to meet her. Clarity, you guys.)

And then Leigh Kramer and Tamára Lunardo arrived, and I think I hugged them for a solid thirty seconds each. My brain kept wanting to say to people, “So nice to meet you!” but I knew that wasn’t completely accurate. So instead I just tripped over saying awkward things like, “Nice to see your face!” and “You look just like your picture!” I have a real problem, you guys. Leigh and I instantly bonded, like I knew we would, and listen. She has a real warmth to her. Bask in it, people.

After hearing my voice raise several octaves in greeting blogger buddies, I made a note to channel the Men’s Wearhouse guy when meeting someone, so that when I squealed and tried to say three different things at once it would be at a much less painful pitch.

And then I had to find Jamie. My smidget sister. I knew she was around underfoot (get it, because she’s short) somewhere, so Leigh and I went hunting. And I found her in the center of a group of people dominating the conversation. Not surprised. By the end of the weekend, I told my husband that Jamie Golden is my newest best friend, as in, come visit us in Tennessee and sleep in our house best friend. It’s true. It’s going to happen. And I promise not to murder her just because she met me on the Internet and I invited her to my house. (SO DON’T WORRY, GUYS.)

You know what else happened? Cake pops. Speaking of cake pops, I also got to meet Amanda Bast‘s doppelgänger in cake pop form. I can’t be sure, but I think the real Amanda is sweeter.

And I also got to meet Amy Payne, who I JUST missed in DC the week before. She is JUST as sweet and reassuring as she is in the blog-o-sphere, so I think I’ll just keep her around for always. Is that cool with you, Amy?

The meet-up Friday night was noisy and chaotic and a little sweaty and awesome. It definitely helped dispel some of the awkwardness of the weekend.

Saturday was chock-full of amazing. But again, that post is still being written. You’re going to want to stay tuned.

Before the conference started, I FINALLY got to meet Kim Wilson. SHE DOES EXIST! When she was feeling too icky to come to the meet-up Friday, I was beginning to suspect Clay was making up an imaginary “friend” who came with him from “Pennsylvania” to the “conference.” But she was there, and she was toting the Things, the honorary mascots of the weekend.

During the conference I sat beside Erin Moon and Jessica McCracken. Erin smells good and sang about Canadian bears, and Jessica has a GREAT twitter name. I also got to hang out with Elizabeth Hyndman who DIDN’T WEAR A HEADBAND. She’s even cuter without it, though.

After feeding us Cheez-Its, they let us go for lunch, and I had the SERIOUS pleasure of lunching with Shawn and Maile Smucker, Leigh, Kim, Joy and Scott Bennett, Matthew Paul Turner, and Anne Bogel. You guys, the Smuckers are genuinely beautiful people. I basically wanted to follow them around the rest of the day and just soak up their undercurrent of serenity. I know Shawn has been writing about the voices in his head, but listen. (Imma bout to get RILL.) There is an authentic sense of peace all over them. Even if they sometimes lose sight of it, it is real, and it’s magnetic.

And Anne! Sweet Anne. She asks THE BEST questions. Which is probably why she is such a great writer. I actually considered taking notes of the things she asked as Getting To Know You questions. Because I’m kind of horrible at that.

The Bennetts are JUST as lovely as their blogs would suggest. Unfortunately, I sat at the opposite end of the table while rushing to eat my lunch and suck down as much Dr. Pepper as I could, so I didn’t get to chat with them as much as I would have liked, and it was nearly halfway through that I realized the fella who introduced himself as Matthew was actually THE Matthew Paul Turner of Jesus Needs New PR. Hey. HEY. I didn’t get my cross-shaped tract, MPT. Unfortunate.

There were SO many new connections made at Killer Tribes. Here’s a quick 30-second rundown:

Patrick Hearn is a kid who plans on biking across Europe. I know. Crazy. Josh Ellig lied about me. Sam Davidson texted me almost the entire time we were sitting down the table from one another at dinner, and is super generous with his beer and fruit snacks and apparently knows people (I think he meant that ominously). I should have taken Haley Bragg to Sonic for Cheddar Peppers. BECAUSE SHE’S NEVER BEEN, YOU GUYS. I know. Crazy. (Next time, Haley Bragg, next time.) Unknown Jim is SIGNIFICANTLY less unknown, plus he was kind enough to email me notes from Carlos Whittaker’s breakout session. I’ve added Amanda Williams to my list of People To Meet For Coffee Next Time I’m In Nashville. Whether she likes it or not. Don’t be surprised, but Molly Gentry knows a LOT about television shows. I KNOW!


Okay. I think I’m done. At least with the people-meeting stuff. As Sam said at the end of Saturday night, “I’m glad we like each other in person, too.”

YES. That BASICALLY sums it all up for me.


Filed under Humor

First Impressions Aren’t My Forte

I AM SO EXCITED YOU GUYS BUT IN THE INTEREST OF YOUR EYEBALLS I WILL commence in lowercase letters with only the occasional capital. Who’s looking out for you, America?

This weekend is the Killer Tribes Conference. It is both my first conference ever AND the coolest one at which I will ever first-time-meet several wonderful blogger buddies. There’s no time like the first time.


I REALLY feel the need to disclaim some personal things, because I am painfully less cool than I am on this blog. Even my own sister once told me that I am more hilarious online than in real life, so you know. SCARRED.

And in all honesty, it usually takes several instances before people like me, and countlessly more before people love me. I wish were kidding just to seem humble and genuine and cool – that’s a thing, right? Telling people you aren’t cool when you really are so that when they meet you their expectations are much lower and BAM!, you’re instantly twelve degrees cooler than they imagined you to be?

Oy. See what I mean?

Unfortunately, the conference is only one weekend long, and there are only so many instances I can squeeze in there without completely abandoning my children and/or following you to your hotel. (To use their pool, duh.)

Because we will be short on time, and all the while packing in a TON of excellent information from brilliant speakers, let me go ahead and expel some first-impression double takes that might arise. You know, because of time.

  • I’m a hugger.
  • I am actually secretly shy. I just overcompensate. And I do mean “over” QUITE literally.
  • I am not trendy. At all. Which is weird, since I’m a blogger, and blogging is trendy.
    • I mean, I shop at Old Navy when I’m feeling fancy.
    • My idea of fashion sense is discerning whether or not these sweatpants make me look fat, or if I can still wear my maternity blouses without anyone asking how far along I am.
    • If I seem even the least bit vogue, it’s because I’m either trying REALLY hard, just went on an Old Navy shopping spree, or raided my sister’s closet. Probably all of the above.
  • I spend all day everyday with a toddler. It’s probably best to ignore it if (when) I slip into baby-talk or reflexively reach for your plate to cut up your vegetables.
    • Look, everyone knows I mean “bathroom” when I accidentally refer to it as “the potty,” so don’t be a hero and take the easy joke, okay?
    • I will probably also try to adjust your ponytail, brush a crumb off your shirt, or wipe a smudge from your forehead. Just swat my hand away and carry on.
  • I literally snort when I laugh suddenly and loudly. I know that many of those in attendance are quite hilarious, so there’s a solid chance my nose might start bleeding. Just ignore it or laugh at me, which is what my family does. Enjoy the show.

I’m sure there are a dozen more that I should point out, but these are (for good reason) the most pressing.

If we meet in Nashville and against all odds, you STILL want to be blogger buddies, leave me a comment at the end of this post with your website, Twitter name, Facebook page…basically any and all ways I can appropriately stalk you internetually. I really want to be your friend, and if Bryan Allain has a Creepy Factor of 13, then I am CLEARLY shooting for the triple digits.


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[Meet the Buttrams] Hey, Please Moderate.

My stats exploded yesterday.

(Not that I pay ANY attention to that number. Right, you guys?)

And I kid you not, when I received an email notification that Mikalee Byerman left a comment on one of my posts, I immediately thought, “What, was I Freshly Pressed?” (Mikalee Byerman is everywhere on WordPress, you guys.)

And when I received fourteen additional email notices within six seconds, I thought, “I must have been Freshly Pressed!”

And then I saw my blogger buddy Mark’s comment (that I did not have to moderate, congratulations, Mark) that said, “Congrats on getting Freshly Pressed!”

Confirmation, you guys. It’s a beautiful thing.

This is also beautiful:

Oh, look, there I am, next to "The best of..." and right above "Humor"!

The Goliath graph bar that’s staring at my other little graph bars like, IMMA GONNA EAT YOU! is also beautiful:


It’s a fluke. I feel like I won the lottery. I feel like taking these screenshots to Starbucks and making them give me a white chocolate mocha for free. (DON’T YOU KNOW WHO I AM?)

I also feel authorized to speak in capital letters ALL DAY LONG. (At this point, ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE, YOU GUYS.)

So thank you, WordPress, for making this happen. Mostly thank you, because that post is actually considered a Humor post. (I AM HAS FUNNIES?)

And a GIANT HELLO! to all my new followers.

Seriously. I love you. Let’s be friends. DO YOU LIKE ME, PLEASE SAY YOU LIKE ME.

My screenshots tell me that you do. (Shhh, don’t correct me.)


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Confessions From A Barber Chair

By the end of last week, my husband realized that I was reaching Critical Mass (the black-hole-death-of-a-star definition, not the Violet Beauregarde-becomes-a-blueberry definition) and, in his infinite wisdom and interest in self-preservation, Hubs made an appointment at the spa for me. (He’s a sweetheart, you guys, and if you see him in person today, you should hug him and ask him to do that two-tone whistle. HE’LL LOVE IT!)

Except…I preferred to cancel that appointment and instead get my hair cut at the salon.

I only get my hair cut about once a year, and love it more than any mani/pedi package out there. For an entire hour, someone professionally certified to make me look pretty plays with my hair. HEAVEN.

Because I only go once a year, I never get to know the stylists very well, even though I go to the same salon every time.

The lady on my right is giving her stylist an update on her kid’s strep throat status, while my stylist is asking me if I’m married and have any kids.

And because of this, coupled with my inability to give dynamic first impressions, once all pleasantries have been addressed, they normally go about their business snipping away in silence, while I compose blog posts in my head and try not to make accidental eye contact with them in the mirror.

Thus, it’s a very introspective time for me. So much so that I’d like to confess some things that were going through my mind. (Calm down, there’s only five.)

1. I cut my own bangs. I always feel self-conscious when I get my hair cut because I know they know I cut my own bangs with a pair of junk drawer scissors. I can feel it in their judgmental snip-snip-snips as they salvage the carnage that is my bangs. I would like to point out (as I did hastily as soon as my stylist combed through the wreckage) that I most recently cut my bangs to be Punky Brewster for Halloween.

2. I have really great hair. Professional hair people tell me so every single time, and I’m always surprised. Please don’t tell me they’re just being polite so I’ll give them a hefty tip. Truthfully, I do have good hair. I’ve never dyed it (I don’t count my Sun-In stage), I hardly ever put anything in it, and it’s healthy, thick and fabulous. I should expect their compliments (even if they’re ill-motivated) after all these years, but I’m always super flattered. (Now if only the people at Starbucks will compliment me on how skinny I look.)

3. Eye contact weirds me out. I know it’s inevitable that the stylists get all up in my personal space, and that I’m actually paying them to do so, but I still haven’t figured out the appropriate place to look when they’re half an inch from my face caressing my hair. Especially since the stylist I had this past weekend was a fellow. So I just stared at his forearms. They were quite beefy for a man who earns a living cutting women’s hair.

4. I’m really not as funny as I think I am. That’s kind of a sad realization. Pity laughs are worse than blank stares, you guys. What makes it worse is that I had to repeat the not-that-funny over the blare of hairdryers and jazz-infused Eastern hipster music, only to solicit that soul-crushing half-laugh. An additional realization is that I REALLY need to work on my first impression before Killer Tribes. (PS, conference friends, if my jokes seem rehearsed, THEY’RE TOTALLY NOT, OKAY.)

5. When I become a billionaire, I will hire someone to shampoo my hair every single morning. This is the REAL reason I get my hair cut at a fancy salon. Head massages, people.


Filed under Humor