Seconds after birth, I was introduced to an older man with dark hair, blue eyes, lamb chop sideburns, and he talked with his hands. He would become the only person on earth who could get away with calling me Laurie instead of Lauren.
When I was a pre-teen, he and my mom would play tennis every Sunday afternoon and I would tag along. They had compatible games so it was fun to watch them interact on the court. For the last part of their session, he would always let me rally with them. In the summers, he had me ride 12 miles, round trip, to and from tennis camp so I could play tennis for three hours. All of this was critical in my development as a tennis player and ensured that I made the competitive tennis team in high school. My brother never had that bonding opportunity and I always appreciated that.
He would play handball in front of the house with me and my older brother and never tire. He would challenge our minds with all sorts of trivia questions that make us popular Read the rest of this entry
Distracted drivers are at an all-time high. You know what I mean. We are stressed out or maybe even happy. We have places to go. People are texting or emailing us or putting a new photo on Facebook. We have lists in our head of everything that needs to get done. Temptation is all around us. It seems that people behind the wheel think that there is always something more pressing than focusing on the road. I have an idea to right this wrong.
Change the sound of horns in cars to a collection of riveting melodies called the Honk-Off Collection.
You are at a light and someone just honked at you. You are flummoxed and your first inclination is to be rude and honk back. Your second inclination is that if you did do something wrong, you want to say you’re sorry and you want to know what you did. With a simple click, you can reply to the initial honk.
The honks can get more intense (but not jarring like the current honk sounds) and the streets would become a delightful symphony of cryptic communication – giving new meaning to NOISE POLLUTION. The car is so smart it can translate what the honk is and the dashboard would display it like caller id does now. There would be such comforting and educational honk tones as: Read the rest of this entry
Years ago, I dreamt of being on Saturday Night Live. The playful Gilda Radner riveted me with her physical comedy, facial gestures, goofy voices, and friendly characters. She was an older version of myself. I thought having Lauren as the funny girl and Lorne Michaels as the producer would make a wonderful and memorable pairing. Read the rest of this entry
Have you ever gone to a place of business when you have a gift card, but it’s not for the dollar amount you need so you want to pay with the gift card and cash or another credit card? Let me just clarify, whenever anyone gives me any type of gift, I am always thrilled. We all should be.
I was faced with this situation the other day. I realized the transaction was going to be annoying to the checker-outer person (and unintentionally the people behind me) but I was going to give it a try.
I said, “Okay, please put $25 on this one and $25 on this one and the remainder on this one. BUT you can’t go over $25 on the first two cards because I’ll get a fee.” She looked at me like a deer in headlights. Uh oh. I explained once again. See above quote but say it a little slower.
This past month (the Month of Lauren) I was treated to an impromptu miniature golf game with an impressive father and son duo.
It’s been many years since I’ve played that favorite birthday activity from my childhood, so I thought I was going to be put to shame.
It started off with me thinking that the colorful orbs in the machines up front by the golf clubs were big gum balls. I believe I had bubble gum on the brain since the son was chewing it in large quantities.
They were the golf balls. The duo had golf balls in hand, one of which was purple. Wait a second, that’s my color! The dad handed me the purple treasure and picked a new colored ball for himself. PINK!
The dad tried to convince me that I should use the toddler-sized golf club as a subtle attack on my lack of height. If he didn’t do that every time I saw him, I would be really worried. I give him credit for being creative in how he delivers the “message”.
We paused for a moment as I looked confused because I couldn’t find the final hole in the maze of faux green grass. The duo looked at each other completely stunned Read the rest of this entry
CAN I DIG DEEPER?!
You may recall that I started the Insanity workout on April 1. Believe it or not, the program is absolutely addicting and rewarding.
For the most part, I have been very committed to this program since I began. I am still in the first month cycle because I have been out-of-town a couple of times and want to get every little morsel of reward out of the first month before I sojourn into month two which will be intense. I believe you do jumps on your head and other crazy moves. Then again, if you asked me in March if I would be able to do a power jack (essentially a horizontal jumping jack with a push up on the floor) – I would have just laughed.
During both of my trips, I did abbreviated versions of the workout. I even had an eight year old pleading with me to teach her some of the moves. She was really into it. It was cute, during the warm up, she asked when it was time for a water break.
CHECK OUT MY GUNS!
This workout allowed me to get new clothing in a smaller size. You know, the size I had in college. Within three weeks, I noticed a huge difference in my arms. The toning is incredible! Giddy! Giddy! Giddy!
Since college graduations are happening all over the country, it makes me think of my college days and how I used to free-write poetry (that is random flow of thoughts with horrific punctuation) to help me remember certain moments such as my first day as a disc jockey. When I listen to old air check tapes, I can’t help but laugh. It’s as if I was Howard Stern when he started out with his high voice and then learned to lower it into his trademark sound.
My passion for radio continued and morphed into a morning drive-time radio show during my senior year with one of my best friends. It was a blast and definitely a highlight of college. As an alternative radio station, we would scour the record library to find a ridiculous title such as Old Skull’s riveting “Hot Dog Hell” which I can’t believe I just found on You Tube!! The first time we played it, we just looked at each other in awe that these young nine and ten-year-old whippersnappers had not only formed a band, but made a record with inarticulate screaming. How can you not be intrigued by a title such as that one?!
I’ll never forget the delight of Read the rest of this entry
This weekend, many Facebook profile and cover photos are composed of mothers, be it a flashback or a recent photo. This is done, obviously, as an homage to Mother’s Day. That’s one of the pros of Facebook.
I’m fortunate that I get to hang out with my mom frequently. Here are some things that everyone loves about my mom, including me.
- She has voluminous hair and she passed that on to me. When I was younger, I used to call her mane “Bozo hair” and she hated that. It wasn’t THAT red but it was full of curls and actually quite pretty. When she grew her “natural” hair color out, to the bedevilment of our hair stylist, I commented that it looked like an “upside-down banana split”. She also didn’t like that too much, either.
- She is a committed pen pal. In college, she used to send me cards for every imaginative holiday, just so I would get mail. To this day, I get many emails from her daily.
- While in college, I had to go to this fancy dance and hand no clue what dress to buy. I received a green and purple formal dress in the mail a few days later – which fit perfectly and looked amazing. Seriously, I know WHY she did that. But HOW did she do that?
- She has a delightful and entertaining circle of friends – my “aunties”. We always find a reason to celebrate something and have a wonderful time.
- She’s an awesome cook and ALWAYS has a ripe avocado in the kitchen when I come to visit so I can make some guacamole. You can hear the comforting sounds of the mixing utensil in a glass as she makes me an awesome Mojito.
- She friends everyone. She can strike up a conversation with the most unapproachable people and make them smile.
- I’m her favorite daughter. She is my favorite mother.
- She is a Read the rest of this entry
Imagine having a month dedicated just to you. Our expectations are way too low. This one day nonsense for your birthday isn’t enough. Each year we have more things we want to do and run out of time. So it only makes sense that this homage to ourselves get expanded. In my case, the month formerly known as May is Lauren. Today is Lauren the 5th.
I actually explained this concept to my lifelong friend’s 12-year-old son in March. He embraced it and to this day reminds his dad that we have now entered the Month of Lauren. That’s a sweet kid.
My parents were very thoughtful planning my arrival into the world. Read the rest of this entry
Last Friday was National Pretzel Day which makes me think of white chocolate covered pretzels in the bulk food section at the grocery store. Do you ever notice those people who offer you samples at the grocery stores? They are usually crammed at the end of the aisle with no room to breathe. They appear bored, but maybe that’s because I’ve lived the dream!
When I graduated from college, (or maybe it was during college breaks), I launched into the world of being one of those spirited samplers who dressed as a future banker with a card table stowed in her dad’s wagon. One of my closest friends (still to this day), worked for a demo company. Buttons enticed me into the low-commitment gig to give me some extra cash.
Part of the delight of doing the sampling gig meant I had to go to a training seminar near the airport. Platters of foods were passed around and we (soon-to-be-sampler specialists) watched the techniques with awe. My biting personality was allowed to thrive in this environment. I really wanted to behave for my friend, Buttons, but when I saw the destruction of the guacamole take place in front of me, I had to speak.
This older guy took a chip, chomped on it Read the rest of this entry