It’s colorful down under … and we’re not talking about Australia

What better way to ring in the new year at The World's Greatest Blog than by taking this site right into the gutter?

Smart move, right?  There'll be nowhere to go but up from here on out.  Brilliant and stupid all at once.

How low can we go? Below the belt, right to the ol' short hairs to be exact.

You can thank my wife's hair salon for this train wreck of thought that's about to unfold.

You see, 13 salon in Walnut Creek is the proud retailer of Betty (http://www.bettybeauty.com/), a pubic hair dye.  How can something like that go unblogged?

I don't know how many times I've seen a woman with garish dye job and had an amused curiosity about whether the carpet matches the drapes. Well, now the carpet can match the drapes thanks to Betty.

According to Betty's Web site they carry black, auburn, brown, blonde, fun, malibu and sexy.  They even carry a Ready Betty styling kit and boast 100,000 happy, colorful customers in less than a year.

If you ask me, there's an untapped potential gold mine nestled in the pubic hairs of color-conscious women across America.

Why should Betty stop with their current products?

How about sports or college themed colors and stencils?

Imagine a rabid young University of Michigan fan with a maize and gold wolverine proudly dyed and cut south of the border?  How about a die-hard Florida Marlins fan with a big ol' teale fish boldy displayed in the comforts of her thong during the heat of a pennant race?

Why stop there?  How about holiday themed Bettys?  They're already tuned in to Valentine's Day but how about red and green dye with stencils for Christmas trees?  Orange and black with stencils for pumpkins and skulls?

If I was so inclined I could even give myself a makeover "down there" thanks to Betty's "manscaping" products for men (http://www.bettybeauty.com/manscaping.php).

The possibilities are as endless as they are potentially tasteless. 

My mind is often in the gutter but it's now a far more colorful and creative place thanks to Betty.

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Net peeves

I've been online way too much lately which has stirred up some long-simmering annoyances.  I'll call'em Net peeves and share a few to ring in the new year: 

* Getting an e-mail notifying you that someone is following your Twitter feed only to find that their profile has been pulled from the site almost immediately.  What'd I  miss?  Porn?  Spam is more likely but the mystery is killing me.

* Memes on Facebook.  If TV turned us into a generation of hams then social networking has turned us into a generation of lemmings, stampeding every time a meme rolls around.

Maybe someday someone will have some hard evidence that sharing a bra color with everyone or cutting and pasting some ham-handed feel-good comment makes a significant difference in the world.  Until then I'll keep trying to wear out the "hide" feature on Facebook.

Don't get me wrong, I usually support the cause but the effect of flooding everyone's feed with random colors or the same phrase over and over and over seems almost as trite as starting the wave at a ballgame.

* Keyboard-in-mouth disease.  A buddy of mine posted a crass comment during the whole "share your bra color to raise breast cancer awareness" meme and instead of wisely fading away after his comment was justifiably flamed he just kept digging himself in deeper and deeper.

As anyone who reads this blog knows, giving someone a keyboard and an open forum can sometimes be a very bad thing.

* Size-shifting banner ads across the top of Web pages.  There's nothing quite like calling up one of your favorite sites and trying to click on a link only to have it suddenly slide down the screen as some obnoxious ad unfurls.

The icing on the cake is when you scroll down to catch up to the link only to have it suddenly slide back up the page and out of reach as the ad shrinks back.  Really charming.

Who the hell came up with these things?

* Flakes on Craigslist and Freecycle.  They're selling something or they really want to buy something … and then they vanish like a fart in the wind as soon as you try to follow up with them.  Sometimes I get the feeling that at least 90 percent of the people on Craigslist and Freecycle are total flakes.

But if you're reading this and you're someone who likes to open random, questionable Twitter accounts; starts and loves Facebook memes; habitually posts tasteless stuff online; designs those monster banner ads; or enjoys flaking out on Craigslist or Freecycle … no offense and thanks for visiting The World's Greatest Blog.

Sayonara 2009

There’s barely been a peep out of me on this site since my son was born in April and there haven’t been too many tweets on Twitter either.

Parenthood, family medical problems, major damage to the house, financial headaches and a collision that totaled my car have kind of put a dent in my efforts to crank out blog entries.

Even this post has taken weeks to pull together but the end of the year is worthy of one more monster post before turning the calendar to 2010.

* I HATE MOLD: In case I haven’t had a chance to mention it, mold sucks. Water and mold damage from a slow leak in the shower at our house added up to tens of thousands of dollars in repairs without an ounce of help from our home insurance. I would have been better of bathing with waterless hand sanitizer for the past few years.

* OH YEAH, I HATE DODGE RAM TRUCKS TOO: When a big ol’ truck suddenly cuts across a lane and hits a Ford Escort the truck wins, hands down. Out with my old car, in with car payments for a replacement vehicle. And this time my insurance company has $1,000 of my money trapped in limbo while it fights it out with the other driver’s insurance company. Mold, trucks, insurance companies … I’m not exactly a big fan of any of them right now.

* DUDE, WHERE’S MY DECADE? I’ve been coming across plenty of end-of-decade articles while surfing the Net over the past month and I can’t believe the decade is already over. Seems like just yesterday that the Y2K bug was a big hype.

* ONE TO GROW ON: New York Yankees lawn seed? Seriously? Yes, it’s real: http://www.stadiumassociates.com/. I hate the Yankees and I think the only reason I’d ever try to grow this stuff would be for the pure joy of burning it and urinating on the ashes.

* TIRED OF THE HOT AIR: The obnoxious Giants keep making a pompous stink about the A’s trying to move to San Jose, sticking to their guns that they have territorial rights to the area. Heck, even the San Francisco district attorney is getting into the act (http://snipurl.com/tqnz2). It’s true that the Giants currently have the rights to San Jose, but here’s a friendly reminder that the only reason they ever got the rights is because the A’s agreed to it back
when the Giants wanted to move down there (http://snipurl.com/tqo4r). That’s right, San Jose used to be shared territory. The Giants haven’t had rights to that area since the first player in orange and black climbed out of the primordial ooze. How about the Giants return
the favor and throw the rights back to the A’s if they’re serious about clearing out of the East Bay? As ESPN’s Rob Neyer points out, the move makes sense for everyone (http://snipurl.com/tqo1i).

* BOGUS ADVICE: Nap while your kid naps? For this parent that’s proven to be worthless advice that doesn’t work in the real world — especially with a son who is a horrible sleeper and barely naps at all. Our little guy doesn’t nap often enough or long enough to make it worth trying to drop everything to try and catch a few Zs. His mini-nap time is our only chance to get anything done around the house.

* CALL ME PARANOID: But I have an odd feeling that health care reform is going to have a negative effect on my family. I guess I should take the time to carefully read the thousands of pages of this legislation just like all of our trustworthy politicians did before voting for it. I mean, they actually read what they voted on, right? Right? Check back with me in a year or two, I bet my health costs will be up significantly and my quality of coverage will decrease just as dramatically.

* I MUST BE THE OFFICE CHATTERBOX: That’s the best explanation I can come up with for why so many people at work asked me for ideas about what to get co-workers for Christmas in our yearly Secret Santa. Do I really spend that much time B.S.ing with everyone around the office? I guess so. Hopefully my gift ideas helped everyone out.

* FAT CHANCE: A new year is right around the corner which mean’s it’s time for a resolution. How about the same one I’ve had for about 10 years running? Lose weight. We’ll see how that pans out in 2010 considering the fact that all I’ve done for the past decade is gain weight. Smart money says that the usual excuse to dodge my annual commitment to better health rears its ugly head: Being too damn lazy to change.

* HALL OF LAME: ABBA is being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (http://www.rockhall.com/induction2010)? You gotta be kiddin me. This ain’t Sweden folks. Just look at’em: http://rachelmarsden.files.wordpress.com/2008/02/abba.jpg,
http://www.mainstaycomputing.com/wp/wp-content/uploads/abba12.jpg,
http://www.hungarybudapestguide.com/blog/uploaded_images/abba-724279.jpg.
I enjoy their music as much as the next drunk guy with a sense of humor at a bowling alley on rock n bowl night but anyone who dresses like that doesn’t deserve to be inducted into a hall of fame.

* SPEAKING OF BAD TASTE: Anyone care to chew on some of this http://www.jerky.com/product/JCB011/Jerky_com_-_Alligator_Jerky.html? That’s right, it’s a big hunk of alligator jerky. I guess it’s better to eat gator than it is to be eaten by a gator but it still seems like an odd snack.

* SO MUCH FOR MY HOLIDAY MOVIES: Only had a chance to watch a fraction of what was on my list, including “Love, Actually.” Like always, I laughed, I cried and by the end of the flick I believed in love again. I’m such a sap.

* FUTURE DADS BEWARE: Think long and hard about exactly what you’re going to say the moment your child is born. Take my word for it, don’t get all excited and blurt out, “Honey, you did it! He’s out!” That’s exactly what I did and I’ve been publicly mocked for it ever since.
I’m afraid that thoughtful eloquence escaped me at the amazing moment my son was born after almost 12 hours in the delivery room. Maybe next time I’ll try quoting a well respected, profound poem or something like that. I guess a haiku scribbled out on a bar room napkin might have been better than my far from eloquent brain fart.

Happy new year and here’s hoping that 2010 is a little more drama free than 2009.