Search Term Madness

March Madness 2012KW, this is for you baby … I know you love these.

As most of you know thanks to the wonders of my blog host, WordPress, I can see the search terms that people use to get to this site. Now for people who write for SEO content, or want to drive traffic to their site, this is useful and informative gibberish that causes them to do magical things with the words they use for future posts. But for me, it’s just straight up entertainment. And it’s a good reminder that you should never use the words “panty” and “bling” in the same sentence.

Whoopsie that’s going to get 50 hits from the folks over at lit-her-hotica dot com for sure.

Anyway, last year around this time I wrote a post entitled “How To Pick Your Bracket Like a Girl.” I wrote it mostly because I am one, and it’s a problem for so many people just like me each year, and because I’ve developed a system. So it was like a public service announcement in a way.  And it got a ton of hits, including a link from a guy who writes for Sports Illustrated and ESPN sometimes, so I was thinking it was pretty popular despite the infantile and sarcastic title which, apparently, is a search term men use to answer this question. I had no idea it would see so much attention again this year.

I learned differently as I looked at my statistics for last night, Super Sunday. It was search after search of variations on the big question: How do I win my office pool? And as I read along I found … well I really don’t want to ruin it for you, so I’m just going to show you what I found last night. Because sometimes, a picture really is worth a thousand words.

Read slowly. Savor the moment …

seo can be funny

At midnight last night this was hysterically funny. In fact, I laughed so hard husband was just staring at me like I had an incurable disease (which I did, which was the giggles). But one of these things is NOT like the others. So thanks for looking guinea pig fashion lovers of the world, and thanks for making my night! Hope you found what you were looking for.

Happy Monday, everyone else. Hope this gave you a laugh with your morning coffee.

P.S. If you don’t already know why I have such a swill of love and disdain for the little pig rodents that inhabit a cage in my house, here’s how it all started: The Good, The Bad, and the Guinea. And here’s the guinea pig care package: Surprise! And here’s my favorite guinea pig post of all time: Guinea in the Manger.


My Big Girl Panties Have Bling

thong bling

Look out. I'm armed and dangerous.

I’m sorry for frightening everyone. I just learned that various midwest cousins are sending my grandmother quizzical missives, politely inquiring into whether or not I’ve died. And she politely declined to answer, since she wasn’t sure herself.

I’m alive, people. I just had a bad cold. Or maybe the flu. And let me tell you, it was all downhill from there. I’m finally recovering. It’s just that I don’t recover like I used to. One week down from an illness meant I was now one week behind at work, which was not an easy catch-up. And I was also one week behind on laundry and bills and groceries and newspapers and emails. It would all have to be caught up in my “spare time” from 6:30 pm et seq. because I was expected to work as a lawyer in there somewhere. Full time. And then the first week of school came along and WHAM! I was slammed.

I personally blame “forty” for the series of mishaps that have followed. I just don’t recover like I used to. Yes, I said it. I’ve successfully avoided discussing it, but there it is. Forty. I’m told I’m a quadragenarian. Anything that sounds like a symptom that might require Geritol is frightening.

I knew I was screwed at the opthamologist. I turned forty and saw the eye doctor, a young man who shouldn’t be so attractive and have such a nice drawly southern accent. I stare at him. I get away with it because, well, I’m supposed to be looking into his eyes, aren’t I? On my last visit he said, “remember that little experiment we were trying with your stigmatism to see if not wearing glasses would exercise your eyes more?” I remembered. I prided myself on my ability to take the driving test without them on the last time. “Oh. Mmmm hmm.” I loved his lazy way of talking. I smiled and stared into his eyes. “Well, it didn’t work. Start wearing them.”

Gah. Thanks.

In fact I inadvertently saw a whole host of health care providers soon after that, all of whom repeated, in lingo appropriate to their various specialities, that my body isn’t what it used to be, that I needed other various procedures performed over the next six weeks, and that it was time for me to move on and accept it. If anyone else tells me to put my big girl panties on I’m going to take mine off and shove it up their …

I scoffed in defiance. I put on my own version of big girl panties, the thong with the sparkly little heart in front.

And then I blew my knee out. I ran for a goal, one on one, and kablammo. It came from behind. I never saw it coming. A tall guy with a pony tail did not want me to score, but wasn’t coordinated enough to effectively manage that. So instead, he went down. And apparently he wanted to take me down with him. As our feet tangled, I watched the ball roll away. With superman precision I flew out, limbs outstretched, and leapt unwillingly onto the artificial turf-over-concrete and landed squarely on slightly bent port patella. As the pain shot through my leg, the fouling perpetrator sealed the injury by landing, with a flourish of tall-person limbs, tiny rubber-substance designed to cushion falls, and a splash of stinky boy sweat dripping from his hippie hairdo, directly on top of me and my port patella. It was special. I couldn’t even get up to take my revenge in the form of a penalty kick. Off the field I went.

But as you moms know, that kind of thing doesn’t stop life, it just complicates it. It requires a visit to the doctor, several visits, but then life goes on. School starts and the lunch-packing horror and homework hysteria ensues. People sue the government and I’m asked to stand up in court with a throbbing knee. Soccer practices keep happening and people expect me to get my children there on time and with cleats on and cold water, all before I’m supposed to be done with work. Laundry still gets dirty, and with soccer in play, it is also increasingly stinky which means it attains an odiferous shelf life before I ever get to it. My children still need to be fed. I still need to be fed. We run out of milk and cereal and peanut-butter after so many days.

And then Husband unwittingly asks me to go car-shopping so he can have a car when he comes home. In my spare time. Yeah, he really did. He really really did. It must be one of the few perks he’s experiencing right now … a complete dissociation from real life. Oh boy, reintegration is going to be so fun. I’m going to need a new pair of panties for that one. I’m going to need a whole wardrobe of sparkly panties for that phase. Maybe he’d like to see my big-girl panty bling in action. Maybe not.

So, the writing had to fall off for a while. Sorry blog-lovers. I knew you’d understand. I’m hiking ’em up high and getting on with life. On the bright side, I have an MRI tomorrow. I’m planning to fake claustrophobia so I can get some happy drugs and take a long, beautiful nap. Wonder if they will make me strip down to my panties …

How to Pick Your NCAA Bracket Like a Girl

NCAA mascots

Dude looks like a birdie.

So you think there’s a science and an art to picking your NCAA teams for the big tournament? Witty Little Secret will now completely demystify the annual formula. Here’s how to pick your NCAA bracket like a girl.

By this afternoon, most American employees will succumb to March Madness, a disease that seems to temporarily cure such workplace maladies as deadlines, micromanagers, paperwork, and timecards. The first time I found myself in a male-dominated working environ, I was astounded at the time suck that this annual event drew in. I had no choice but to join them in this odd bonding ritual. The option was to be labeled a non sport-watching girl. I was horrified, since I never EVER watched college basketball.

When I first embarked on my mission for college basketball awareness in 2001, I had a clean 24 hours to come up with my brackets. This was a distressing process for me because I could not research, read, interview, dissect, discuss and digest the plethora of websites and sports shows related to the topic. And lawyers must do this before they make a decision they are going to put in writing. Not only that, extra study and consultation is required when their own money is riding on the outcome.

But there was not time for such tomfoolery. I had to wing it. Lawyer Guideline #2: when the interminable list of duties fails due to procrastination and surprise, “fake it till you make it.” So I went with the complicated decision matrix I’m going to reveal here. This has been a secret of mine for ten years now, and it’s time I revealed my true genius. And it’s all for free.

Early Round Picks – Play the Odds

In the Early Rounds, look down the outermost sides of your bracket and just pick all of the obvious higher-ranking seeds. This means all of the 1,2,3, and 4 seeds move on and all of the 15, 14, 13, and 12 seeds lose. This rules out nearly half of your decisions and makes you look somewhat smart. Now, for the remainder of the teams for the first couple of rounds just pick by Vegas odds.

By the way, I highly recommend reading up on how Vegas odds actually work. Ahh, memories. Good thing there were some Cinderella teams that year. I read them all exactly backwards and I still placed in the top half of the competition that round.

Sweet Sixteen – Team Leaders

When you get down to the Regional Semifinals, the picks start getting harder. This is where some serious skill is needed. You will need to make the tough calls by chosing the best team leaders. That’s right. I’m talking about the mascots. I mean they do call it the “Sweet Sixteen” afterall. And that’s just sweet. Who can argue with fur, clothed animals, and people who live for making themselves anonymously ridiculous? I know it’s hard to compare a Jayhawk to a Wolverine, and it does seem somewhat subjective, but look at it this way: there’s really no shame in any of your choices. They are all equally pretty. So pick confidently!

Elite Eight – Off The Rack

Isn’t it obvious? This is the elite round, people. Pick the team with the most stylish uniforms. This methodology really threw me off in the years when they started bringing back the retro-duds and the new tighter designs. I just had such a hard time voting for basketball players in trim-fitting v-neck vests.

Final Four – Suck it Up

Look, if you thought the Elite Eight was hard, let me tell you, this round is even harder to pick. If you haven’t watched a game all season, you’d better have plenty sports fans in your life that want to impress you with their NCAA prowess. Go ask for advice and get some good information based on the bracket you’ve filled out so far. Don’t worry about how hard they laugh when they see that you still have Villanova in the running for the playoffs. All it means is that you now know who to eliminate. Be sure to make some comment about how your cousin goes to school there and he “made” you pick them. Also, be sure to actually pick the team your boss recommends when he’s the one scoring the brackets. (Another lesson I learned the hard way. Learn from my mistakes, people.)

National Championship Game – Go With the Legacy

Alright, this one is the biggest no-brainer of all. You absolutely positively must pick you or your family’s alma-matter team if they have made it this far. If you don’t have a family legacy like me (Rock Chalk!) then you must pick the school attended by a family member who is a fervent basketball fan. If you have more than one choice, pick your richest relative. In the unfortunate event that you don’t have any rich old uncles, don’t worry. No matter how poor your relations are, you and your family member(s) can always get behind the old alma-matter and sing songs and jump around like the cheerleader you always wanted to be.

With all that in mind, fill out your brackets and get your money in the pool. You only have a few hours left and you know there’s far too much traffic on the work computers for your boss to actually track your internet usage. Plus, he’s probably on ESPN reading up on best picks as we speak. Good luck, everyone!

NCAA 2011Lori loves March Madness and is a ten-year NCAA bracket participant, which would qualify her as an expert witness if ever that need arose. She has had the privilege of placing in the top five and (theoretically) winning money in several bracket competitions using this foolproof method, which turns out to be just as predictive and successful as the complicated schemes of her actual basketball-watching colleagues and clients.

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