Ernst and Young, this shit is getting old

I know the story broke a couple of weeks ago, but I’ve only just now gotten enough time to sit down for 30-40 minutes, tops, to write a response in blog posting form. When I first read the story on the Huffington Post (see link below), I nearly threw up my overnight oatmeal, one I made with old-fashioned rolled oats, soy milk, chia seeds, flax seed meal and one of Glenn’s squeeze-y fruit/veggie pouches. Not bad, I must say…
Anyway, I know sexism, misogyny and the (mostly white) patriarchy still linger in the keyboards and stale coffee of workplaces the world over, but this is ridiculous. For a better idea of what I’m talking about, imagine a movie where the AMC show “Mad Men” and 2010 comedy “Hot Tub Time Machine” crossed over, as sexist old(er) men from the 1960s get transported through a magic water cooler to the workplaces of 2019. These obnoxious good ol’ boys would be taken down and out like Confederate statues for saying to the office secretary “Darling, could you give me Bob’s annual report, a cup of coffee and a blow job? Thanks! I’m falling so far behind and really need to get A-HEAD! Get it?! Hahaha!!”
Almost two weeks ago, the accounting monolith Ernst and Young got into some hot water over a misogynistic, vile “training course” called Power-Presence-Purpose, where women are shamed for being anything other than a Stepford wife with a briefcase. Using words like “child-like” and “flatterable” – among many others – to describe women who drop their children off at daycare at 07:30, slay the boardroom meeting at 09:00 and get the lucrative contract before lunch makes me wish that hot water boiled Ernst and Young like a lobster in a pot.
Even though it doesn’t offer the course anymore, their begrudging, get-it-over-with non-apology apology by a peroxide blond stock photo named Kelly Grier, the U.S. Chair of Ernst and Young, was insufferable. You don’t apologize by saying “we regret some of the content, but there are people who’ve taken the program and credit it to helping their career.” No, an apology is “we regret the content because it disrespects and devalues the hard work and gifts of the women we’re honored to have employed. Empathy, assertiveness, creativity, intellect – these are qualities we see in both our male and female employees. We have learned a valuable lesson: you can try to be part of a solution, but end up being part of the problem itself.
Kelly, I have a great idea for Ernst and Young for a new training program, a three-part seminar for men called “Awareness-Assumptions-Adjustment,” where they learn that complete junk science (and hatred of any woman that dares to be your equal) isn’t just sexist, but harmful to themselves, their careers and society as a whole. “Men are like toddlers, throwing temper tantrums and making messes for others to clean up, whereas women are calmer, cooler and stay collected under greater pressure, able to handle when things go wrong.” It would teach that when they act like an absolute asshole to a female colleague, they show weakness and insecurity, losing a potential ally and demonstrating unprofessional behavior and causing the cohesiveness of a workplace to come undone. Watch any Senate or Congressional testimonies, and see how the female witnesses keep it together while their male counterparts often go berserk at the slightest criticism. See how that sounds now.
I have to go shower and get to bed now – another day ahead of me, another pre-made breakfast (chia seed pudding with some protein source), another day of Glenn’s autism therapy (which is going well, he’s also just an incredibly smart and stubborn two-and-a-half year old) and now the third day of a new job. Good night, everybody, and good luck.


This is the article that I have spent a long time writing, but only in my mind. I worked on it every day, as I read an increasing number of board books to Glenn, scheduled the needed intake appointments, making sensory bottles and sensory bins, and getting a nice zip-up file-thing to hold all of his paperwork/notes in. I worked on it through the onslaught of the bone-crushing anxiety and gut-twisting guilt of what happened during the pregnancy and delivery. Even though there’s nothing I could’ve done differently, I’m still having a hard time getting over it.
I worked on it to the point where I realize that this is a common story, but it’s Glenn’s story, and I can’t cushion him against the thoughtless comments and cruel bullying he may experience later on. Despite that, Glenn’s early life experience won’t be the same as mine. Every day, I have to consciously remind myself that my early life experiences won’t be his, and I can’t let my fear from a fucked-up past dictate my present actions and potentially destroy his future.
Okay, you read “sensory bottles” and “intake appointments,” and see that I live in the Bay Area, so you most likely guessed right: my son has mild-to-moderate autism spectrum disorder. Having been suspected of what they called (at the time) an “autistic personality” and marrying a mechanical engineer, I shouldn’t have been surprised at all. In fact, I probably should’ve been ready-to-go before Glenn’s birth with the Pinterest-worthy sensory paraphernalia, several weighted blankets and practiced-to-perfection my puzzle-piece face paint, like football player Tim Tebow does with the Bible verses under his eyes.
As far as that last one goes, it’s for when I leave the house with him, prepared to ride into playgrounds and grocery stores like the Headless Horseman, making every “normal” parent who gives unsolicited advice and dirty, pitying looks lose ten pounds instantly. No Keto diets or spin classes taught by flawless Nordic warriors required! All it takes is completely ignoring the boundaries of basic social propriety and telling people (in not so many words) “Instead of offering practical help and/or words of encouragement, I’m going to stand here like a mall-cop-who-thinks-he’s-SWAT and criticize you.” Or worse, tell you “I just wanted to say that you’re such a brave mom for dealing with an autistic son. I couldn’t handle something like that.”
I got some brave words for these parents, these oft-anti-vaxxer, fragrant, crunchy, free-bleeders who think me PARENTING my son (and doing what’s best for him, to the best of my abilities) is somehow worthy of being the 15th Station of the Cross: I hope the Ten Plagues of  the Millennials (see the end of the blog posting) come down to wreck your shit. They’re like the Original Ten Plagues of Egypt, but updated for the 21st century and equally horrifying.

That’s why I titled this blog posting the way I did, and I made it confrontational to make myself as clear as possible. Glenn having autism – opposed to being autistic – doesn’t make him a victim worthy of fake woke-ness (the White House being lit up in blue, while they cut funding for Medicaid and Betsy Devos) and condescending “you just have to be pray and be thankful your children aren’t messed up like that.” I refuse to support groups like Autism Speaks and Generation Rescue, and no one else who loves their children should either.

To summarize this blogging bloodbath, children with autism (now including my Glenn) are more than just a composition of symptoms, triggers and hospital co-pays – they are what Sesame Street lovingly call “the people in your neighborhood.” That reminds me, I have to repair his Julia doll, because Sofie chewed part of the orange “hair” off. My iPhone has seven percent power in it left, so this is where I leave you all for tonight. Good night and good luck.


1.) Rivers of Spilled Expensive Liquids. Ever spill a bottle of champagne, codeine-based cough syrup or whole bottle of LUSH-brand shower gel (the Rose Jam one that costs $49.99)? Yeah, basically imagine all of the liquids that you worked hard to acquire and you watch that shit spill all over the floor, down the drain or on the coffee table? Just hard-earned money dripping everywhere.

2.) Amazon trucks and other delivery vehicles (i.e. DoorDash, UBER) breaking down and/or being violated in any way. In the Old Testament telling of the Ten Plagues, frogs were sacred to the ancient Egyptian people and killing them would have been a sacrilegious act, to say the least. Of course, piles of dead, rotting frog carcasses is fucking terrible. We millennials consider delivery trucks of any size and shape, as well as our ride-share vehicles, to be our frogs.

3.) Robocalls. Sure, they’re a problem now, but try to picture every smartphone currently operating ringing/buzzing nonstop with robocalls 24/7, to where you’d never sleep again.

4.) Hoards of older people criticizing you for being a millennial; like the flies of the Fourth of the Ten Plagues, they swarm like an avenging force, attacking your character because you told them to stop bugging you about using fabric softener, going to religious services and giving them grandchildren.

5.) A major disease running rampant through the global avocado trade, making the luscious green fruit that sustains the millennials unavailable. That’d suck.

6.) Having an account – be it email, bank or whatever – hacked and put out for everyone to see. I’m including leaked nudes in this one, because any of these unfortunate situations would make any sentient human being feel like they’re covered in head-to-toe boils.

7.) Being shamed online from every social media outlet by every person with Internet access alive today. The Old Testament talked about thunderstorms and hail, but those eventually stopped. Due to the immortal nature of the Internet, those raging fires of digital discontent will go on forever.

8.) Being forced to shop only at Safeway or Whole Foods. Speaking of locusts devouring whatever you may have left, going grocery shopping at these places can make you spend so much more than you anticipated. It’s not difficult to spend almost $200 at Safeway; even when you buy on sale, stick to only what’s on your list and choose as much store-brand as possible, it adds up FAST.

9.) This is the easiest plague to imagine: the darkness of three days without wi-fi. No social media, no Netflix/Hulu/Amazon Prime or online shopping (usually goes by the name of Amazon).

10.) I’ll keep the original, save-the-worst-for-last “death of the firstborn” plague. Glenn being a “one-and-done” makes this one I don’t want to touch.


Let me start by saying “Happy Fathers’ Day!” to all of the fathers out there. Whether or not you made a “donation,” you deserve a holiday where you can do whatever you want, which brings me to the theme of this weekend’s posting: we’re having a low-to-no-key celebration. Just dinner and exchange of small, simple gifts (if any gifts) – nothing fancy or worthy of one of those Hallmark movies Joe loves to watch (he says he needs them to detox from the 24/7 presence of President Cheeto Dust). Just us family. Yesterday we had our neighbors over for pizza and some homemade chocolate marshmallow squares.

Anyway, the “do-nothing” holidays are rising amongst the American cultural landscape. As our incomes stagnate and our costs of living skyrocket, the idea of spending half of one’s paycheck on holiday/birthday gifts seems less appealing. As our lives get busier – to the point where we have to map out detailed schedules just to have dinner with friends and family – the idea of the all-out extravaganza becomes utterly exhausting.

Let me be perfectly clear: when I say “do nothing,” I don’t mean just stay at home and heat up some TV dinners, forgetting about Easter, Christmas, or in this case, Father’s Day. Obviously we celebrate it, but just not a small vacation or huge party. Yesterday, we just had take-out Hawaiian and watched two “Jo Koy” specials on Netflix. It’s official: I’ve never seen Joe (or his side of the family) laugh that hard in my entire life. My favorite part of Koy’s comedy routines are when he talks about his son, because before long, Glenn will be a surly, “DAADD!!!” teenage boy and I’m sure we’ll be having similar conversations with him on similar issues. Until then, I’ll be carrying all 30+ pounds of him everywhere.

Sorry, got distracted. I know I said the next blog posting will be about Glenn, and how I needed time to process it properly. I still haven’t done so 100%, but the next blog posting I SWEAR will be that. Father’s Day has new meaning with stuff like this, I don’t know.

I can hear Glenn waking up now, so don’t feel the pressure to go all-out and spread yourself way too thin. Happy Father’s Day to all of the Fathers, Dads, Daddys and Dadas in the world. You rock! 🙂


Yeah, I come back from over two months of writing nothing because there’s been a new development or revelation (or whatever you want to call it) in my parenting journey with Glenn, but that’s something for the next blog posting. I shouldn’t have been surprised, since I’m not what any practicing brain doctor (pick a sub-specialty) would call “neurotypical.” Again, it’s for the next posting, when I’ve had more time to process it properly.
Anyway, abortion is more than the Holy Grail of polarizing political issues; during every Mass I go to, without fail, the priest or deacon always tell the parishioners to pray for “an end to abortion” or “for women who had an abortion,” and that one depressing line always throws me for a loop, and I think about it for the remainder of the Mass. Apparently abortion is the biggest moral crisis America faces and when there are no more abortions, we will live in the garden of Eden again.
If I had to say the “pray for” part, here’s what I would say: when you pass by the St. Francis statue with the “respect life from conception until natural death,” remember you can’t just go from conception until birth. You have to keep going and actually give a crap about people for their whole lives, no matter what happens. Before you condemn that pregnant woman for considering abortion, give at least one intelligent thought to the context of her situation. Maybe she was raped by a family friend, or she was pressured to have sex by an abusive, toxic spouse/partner?
Maybe they slipped a little on the “natural family planning,” something my late maternal grandmother, an administrative assistant in the Catholic Church for decades, called “Vatican roulette?” If you excommunicated every Catholic who has used or currently uses artificial contraceptives, you’d empty the pews of every Church across this country (and beyond). I’m not saying that the Catholic Church has to support abortion and open abortion clinics in the parking lot every Monday and Wednesday afternoon, but it helps to see the humanity in the person being forced to make an incredibly painful decision. Their lives matter just as much.
My main point is simply this: American Catholics are so obsessed with abortion that we’re willing to ally ourselves with the Mike Pence(s) of Christianity just to overturn it. The Republican Party platform should be the most horrific thing imaginable to the Catholic Church, because it stands against everything Jesus preached and “entered into his passion willingly” for. Being a one-issue voter, especially for an issue for which you have just regurgitated talking points and no real understanding, never ends well. The thing that has always stuck with me about God (and faith as a whole) is how He sees who people really are. When He sees “pro-life” means “forced birth” and “aww, sucks to be you” with a heavy helping of Brett Kavanaugh-style “no-means-yes-and-yes-means-anal,” He’s face-palming like a teenager hearing their parents attempt to be cool.
According to, almost 3,000 abortions have occurred just today. Sad, yes, but 169 mass shootings have also occurred JUST THIS YEAR SO FAR! Call me a hippie-dippy Bay Area liberal who just converted as opposed to being raised in the faith from birth, but 18,557 dead and wounded Americans is awful. One in five Americans struggle with serious mental illness, and we rank #28 in highest suicide rate in the world. Every year, we lose 45,000 of our friends, family and fellow citizens from a lack of affordable, accessible health care. Every year, 46 million Americans – around 12 million of them the same “innocent babies” you claimed to care about in front of that abortion clinic – struggle with meeting basic nutritional needs. The March for Life would mean a lot more if more “lives” fell under that banner.
To be “pro-life” in Catholicism not only means being against abortion, but also against the death penalty, euthanasia, assisted suicide, mass shootings, sexual assault and every other act of violence against humanity. To be “pro-life” in the Republican Party means to just oppose abortion, and violence when it’s only against the people you like, and that’s pretty much it. I will always remember that Republican debate from 2011, where people cheered for then-Governor Rick Perry (R-TX) having allowed 234 executions to be carried out. It’s that barbaric, blood-curdling mentality alone that has abolished what little support I’ve ever had for the death penalty.
Abortion is the hill Catholics are willing to let our faith die on, and it’s downright awful to think thoughtless bumper stickers, screaming at women in front of Planned Parenthood facilities and the metastasizing of crisis pregnancy centers are the way to achieve anything. I’m sure God is looking at us and going, “For a living creature with the most complex, powerful structure in the Universe, you have a painfully, embarrassingly hard time with learning from your mistakes and understanding that BOTH morals and intelligent thought are required to make better decisions.”
How do I feel about abortion personally?? Honestly, it’s really complicated, and I feel caught between faith and the fundamental reality of living in a female body, a complication compounded by the current effort to overturn Roe v. Wade and ban abortion outright, an effort LED BY MALE BODIES. To hear these male Senators and haggardly traitor-to-all-women Governor Kay Ivey (R-AL) wax poetically about the “sanctity of life” – when they would’ve taken away the high-risk obstetric care that saved both Glenn and me – is a level of hypocrisy and callousness harvested from the bitter, lifeless soil of a nuclear holocaust.
Yeah, that’s harsh, but so was Jesus – he didn’t play around with that “thoughts and prayers” shit. That fired-up, woke-as-fuck social justice warrior with brown skin and dark hair made it very clear how he felt about people whose noble actions are just a smokescreen for evil intentions and not caring about who gets hurt in the process. Jesus most likely wouldn’t be a traditional Democrat, but he sure as Hell wouldn’t be a Republican.
To wrap up a LONG OVERDUE blog posting, being Catholic isn’t compatible with the current “pro-life” movement in this country, because in the process of trying to save the fetus, you destroy the child and the gifts they have to offer the world. Just think about it for a little bit. Good night, just good night.

New study finds 45,000 deaths annually linked to lack of health coverage



Lately, I’ve come to the long-overdue realization that just because something important and all-consuming is happening – whether a big change in the family, chaos overseas or the upheaval in Washington – doesn’t mean that MY life has to stop dead in its tracks. Yes, believe it or not, the planet hasn’t been swallowed up by the sun and we’re still here as a species. If this blog posting looks a little weird, it’s because Glenn has been trying to “help” me write, as in banging on the keyboard. Keep that in mind.
As a literal breath of fresh air, we are celebrating a wonderful new addition to our family (a fourth grandchild was welcomed into the world a couple of weeks ago). With all the trash fires set ablaze, it’s good to know that life still finds a way through the smoke and the ashes.
However, I mistakenly that my existence has stopped and I can’t experience my life, celebrating the good and carrying on through the bad. I get this way every time something huge happens – I think that it’s selfish to bring up anything in my life, or think about myself, because we all need to be laser-focused on the event. I got that way when both former FLOTUS Barbara Bush, her husband President George H.W. Bush and then now-deceased-but-you’d-think-he’s-still-alive Senator John McCain (R-AZ) died. Even if said event has had no impact on your life, you have to feel something, the same something that everyone is feeling, and if you don’t, then well…
Over the last three weeks, the intrusive paranoid thoughts I’ve experienced my entire life started to recur and I thought “Don’t share pictures of Glenn and your life with your friends and family, or talk about anything in your life, because obviously you’re trying to take attention away from something/someone more important than you. Also, don’t ask anyone for anything. Even if it’s something like a medical appointment, either do without or make it work some other way. You need to stop being so selfish. You have only one kid and they now have three, so what right do you have to be tired and stressed?”
Quoting a lyric from the Journey song “Don’t Stop Believing” over here, “…it goes on and on and on and on…” Play. Repeat. Play. Repeat.
None of these are even remotely based in reality and Joe looked at me like I sprouted four heads (at once) when I told him this. He said, “Erin, really??!! No one’s ever said anything to that effect, and you’re acting irrational and crazy. Eat something. Shower. Get sleep.” He was right, though. I hadn’t been acting normally and I needed to get back in touch with my own life, because I was missing out on experiences that I’ll never get back.
Hasn’t everyone been experiencing this, though? Maybe it’s just because you actually have to make a conscious effort to avoid mass media and set clear boundaries about not talking politics, even though you end up talking about it less than ten minutes later. We need to get back in touch with our own lives, and remember that the whole world hasn’t stopped due to the maelstrom outside the front door. We still have families and friends that we love dearly and that drive us crazy. We still have jobs that sandwich us between drudgery and satisfaction. We still have hobbies that calm our internal distress, like the Eternal Flame resting over the grave of President John F. Kennedy, never cease to burn out from time-related excuses “I-gave-it-up-because-I-got-bored-with-it..” For the love of God, never forget we’re still here.
To end what hopefully doesn’t sound like a blog posting of emotional incontinence, pathological sentimentalism and what-not, let me say life goes on. It has to. Good morning, good luck and don’t forget to live.


In light of the 50 people murdered and 50 gravely injured last Friday in the terrorist attack of Christchurch, New Zealand, I have come to the sad conclusion that we can no longer rely on governments to protect us from terrorism. I know I say this because the current American president is a right-wing terrorist who doesn’t want to offend the good people “on both sides,” but now I can see that it’s spreading beyond our borders. If you can’t remember how many times you wrote about something like right-wing terrorism, THAT’S REALLY, REALLY BAD!!!
My heart goes out to the people of New Zealand, and these past two days have shown – without any doubt – that they cannot be shaken, silenced or scared by shitheads like now-identified shooting suspect Brenton Tarrant. In any act of terrorism, what always strikes the deepest chord within me are the ordinary people who say “there’s a high probability I’m going to die right now, so I might as well go out a hero and save everyone and anyone I can.” This was the attitude, I believe, of those attending Jumu’ah who stopped Tarrant from killing more innocent people. One man, a worshipper by the name of Abdul Aziz Wahabzadah, kept him from entering the main building of the Linwood Islamic Centre by distracting him and breaking the glass of the getaway car with a spent shotgun. Him, and so many others, are who I would nominate for those “you the real MVP” memes online. Brief acts of courage are like pebbles thrown into a pond: the ripples of seemingly small actions go on forever and cannot be forgotten.
The smaller details of Tarrant’s ideology differ because of geography, yes, but he shared the same basic white-supremacist, xenophobic, right-wing populism as Norway’s Anders Breivik and America’s James Alex Fields (during the 2017 Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, he ran over counter-protester Heather Heyer with his car). What will happen to him remains to be seen, and all we can hope for is that he’s removed from society permanently by any means necessary. However, like the hydra, you can’t just cut off one head and call it a day – for every terrorist you take out, more always reappear ready to pick up from where the last one left off. 
I’m a huge fan of the “Kingsmen” movies, and I firmly believe that we need that kind of covert, multi-national organization to defeat the 21st reincarnation of the Nazis. Then and now, this particular brand of right-wing ideology espouses a more thoroughly gender-segregated society (kicking women out of the workplace, reinforcing traditional gender roles in terms of family rearing and culture), stamping out the LGBTQ community, strident anti-intellectualism and, of course, the overarching goal of creating a homogeneous Caucasian society where non-Caucasians (or hybrids like me) either don’t exist or just quietly “know their place.”
Obviously, we wouldn’t call it Kingsmen, and the state-side phrase “the Resistance” got completely fucked up by establishment politicians trying to sound hip and not AT ALL complicit in this pandemic of white nationalism, so what can we call it? Comment below if you’ve got any good ideas. This isn’t a joke blog posting like the one about men and them having no right to be offended by being held to a reasonable standard of self-care and outward presentation.
No, I mean it, we need something that can best be described as a peacefully named non-governmental organization (NGO) being run by Brian Mills (the hero from the “Taken” trilogy), Jack Bauer (“24”) and anyone else willing to volunteer their time and risk their lives. We have to do this, in honor of the people that gave their lives for the lives of others and those who were left behind.
Before I sign off for the night… Good night to our friends in New Zealand and know that you’re not alone right now. You never will be.


To put some more “lighthearted lunatic” fare in my blog, I decided to write an egalitarian response for those “women’s fashions that men hate” lists I see everywhere on the Internet: a list of current men’s fashions that make me so glad that Joe wears what he does. His daily “uniform” is dark-colored jeans/pants, dark tops (either collared with no frills, or a standard-issue sci-fi nerd T-shirt) and sensible shoes. Oh, and a hat to protect his perfectly bald, beautiful head. Since Joe doesn’t have any hair whatsoever, he won’t fall victim to the “it-was-cool-when-I-was-younger” hair-tastrophes of yesteryear, today and the not-too-distant future. No mullets, man buns, chin straps or microwaved ferrets for Glenn to laugh at later. My hair-tastrophes were merely the result of not knowing how to maintain thick, wavy hair that goes full-Chia pet at humidity more than 20 percent.
While everyone is certainly entitled to their opinion, and I do find myself disliking most of current women’s fashion (ripped jeans, leggings as pants and the hipster handlebar mustache logo are genuinely icky), I have never run across a list of men’s fashions that women dislike. An older article I used, yes, but some of the items are always perennial dislikes no matter what year we’re in.
However, the one item I will take acidic exception to are the no-pantsuits-for-women, because apparently they’re only for men?
What the fuck am I supposed to wear to a job then, or a formal dinner or even just because I want to??!! I have to wear Spanx under my skirts and dresses for two important reasons: ATROCIOUS thigh-chafing and more exposure of my flab to public view. Spanx is the fashion equivalence of opioid painkillers: they’re expensive, make you uncomfortable and work like a motherfucker. Also, being plus-sized and short gives you little to work with in the knee-length skirt department.
Men are allowed to be comfortable and not feel the pressure to look like a hot secretary from the 1960s-throwback show “Mad Men.” At my age, the “naughty secretary” thing doesn’t work anymore.
One thing’s for sure: making a humorous-but-slight-hurtful list of men’s fashions I detest will be construed as “reverse sexism,” like “reverse racism” or any other imaginary grievance.  This isn’t meant to be any of that, not at all. I’m just pointing out that men have always been allowed to have a say in what’s attractive in their sex partners, and often choose to do so in a very juvenile and dick-ish way. Why can’t us women have preferences?? Being in my mid-thirties isn’t just about not feeling guilt-ridden about pulling off the “hot secretary” look, but also (finally!) having the wisdom and confidence to say “there’s a difference between having high standards and being unreasonably picky.

So, here I go..

1.) The whole idea of men not grooming their facial, head and body hair, and just “letting it go” like Elsa from “Frozen.” Gentlemen, there’s nothing sexy about looking like the love child of Chewbacca and a Druid priest. I’d be much nicer about it, but these men are always the same ones who make relations with the opposite sex wholly conditional upon her legs, underarms and private parts being completely smooth. Men can certainly have their head and body hair preferences, and there are certainly benefits to going (at least mostly) fuzz-free. I’m just saying that they shouldn’t expect us to do something they wouldn’t do for (or to) themselves.
Gentlemen, if you really need her to go hairless, you need to be the one to buy her gift certificates to a waxing place and make sure there’s a fresh razor (with shaving cream) waiting for her in the shower. Tell her “I appreciate how much trouble you go to look super-hot” and “if you’re willing to pour hot wax on your private parts, then I should probably trim my nose hairs BEHIND CLOSED DOORS without complaining, huh?”
A smaller subset of rule #1 is facial hair styles – most goatees, chinstraps, mustaches without beards – that scream “I’m a douchebag who puts soda in the free water cup!” As a general rule-of-thumb, most facial hair styles suck because they’re bad ideas executed with the same degree (or worse) of fail. Either have a well-maintained beard or just shave it all off.

2.) Men who don’t follow basic hygiene and other grooming unrelated to hair. Keeping it short, so to speak, I’m talking about trimming nails, bathing, brushing teeth, removing ear wax and so on. Also, as I mentioned before, do it behind closed doors and don’t complain. Adding to this rule, please don’t overdo it with the cologne (Joe has an awesome story from grade school with regards to this one), and if you use it, it shouldn’t be AXE.

3.) Shirts that have vulgar, gross or flat-out fucked-up sayings on them, such as “bad girls suck/good girls swallow” (saw it on Pinterest), “no fat chicks allowed” or any variation of that. Hearing this shit from the President is bad enough, but I can turn him off… for right now. I can’t “turn off” the perennial frat boy wearing “locker-room talk” at Target, Safeway or any other place these cretins are culturally allowed to gather.
There are two benefits to this, though. First, it can be a form of birth control that doubles as a red-flag; if he’s willing to say this in public, one can’t even begin to imagine what he says (or worse, does) in private. Essentially, you can see how he’s an asshole without seeing his dick, saving you serious aggravation and potentially an incurable STD. Second, there are usually what I’d call “safe spaces” where you can be sure you won’t see these shirts, such as religious services, arts-and-crafts stores, etc. At least my safe spaces – the weekly Mass, Michaels and Jo-Anns, Torrid, being with friends and family – are inoculated from shirts you shouldn’t even wear cleaning the toilet.

4.) Popped collars, sagging pants, pants that are wayy too tight (don’t need to see your religion!),  or other bastardizations of standard-issue fashion. Just leave the clothes the way they are, and they will be fine.

5.) Any sort of fake tanning product, even if it’s done in a salon by a professional. You know what? Dear God no, oh Hell no and you’ve got to be fucking kidding me! Again, our President is the most egregious offender at the moment, but don’t forget the culturally deceased cast of the “Jersey Shore” and a whole slew of other mayonnaise-on-Wonder-bread sandwiches too numerous to name. Fake tanner NEVER looks good. NEVER.

6.) Ripped, ratty underwear. I’m not saying they need to be the sexiest pairs ever designed by your average “guppy” (and subsequently made by an Asian sweatshop worker), but you should take enough pride in your undergarments to wear ones that aren’t full of holes, stained or have compromised elastic. You know the “wear clean underwear because you might get into an accident, and the paramedics may have to remove your clothes” admonishment from your mom? Well, having had plenty of those experiences where I’ve lost consciousness and had my clothes involuntarily removed, I’ve replaced all of my tattered, icky pairs with nice, new ones befitting an aspiring-to-be-classy 30-something. Gentlemen, many of those emergency medical personnel are hotter than a malfunctioning dryer, so get on it and clean out those drawers! You see what I did there?? Okay, yeahh…

Honestly, I’ve got nothing else. Got to go to sleep. Good night, good luck and see you soon.