Tag: Science?

Topic: How do you handle change?

Cindy Thinks

Ally Thinks

I thrive on Change.

I initiate it.

I get bored without it and then if things get too quiet, I initiate it some more.

I guess that makes me a change junkie.

But…I also like routine.  A small amount of routine to balance out all of the changes I create in my life.  Like when the dogs get fed each day;  or the way I like to have a cup of coffee in bed every morning before getting up, but then have to be fully dressed with make-up and jewelry on and bed made, before going back downstairs to start my day.

You know…the OCD kind of routine stuff.

I’m not a maniac or anything.  I’m just a weird kind of change junkie who also happens to like having things orderly around me.

And everything needs to move quickly.

I like my changes to happen fast.

(Clearly, that whole patience thing is not my strong suit)

I think it has to do with the fact that my hair grows really really fast.

I never worry about getting my hair cut (apparently some women absolutely flip out over the idea of cutting their hair!).  But my hair grows freakishly fast.  So when I get bored with my hair style (which happens every few months or so) and decide I need to get a new haircut (as soon as possible) – I just do it.  And if it ends up not being something that I like (which is rare because I have an amazing hair stylist)…I don’t freak out because I know it won’t take more than a few days (ok…maybe a couple of  weeks) before it grows back to where it started, and then I’ll get to change it again.

So I started to try to figure out if someone was a “change agent” or “change adverse” by figuring out if their hair grew quickly or not.  Typically I found that people with fast growing hair would accept and/or initiate change much better than someone whose hair took forever to grow back.

So I labeled it the “Speedy Hair Growth Theory.”

It totally makes sense.  If someone with slow growing hair gets a bad haircut, they’re totally traumatized because they know they’ll have to live with the results of that bad haircut forever…so they extrapolate that feeling into everything else and they become afraid of change!!

It’s brilliant.

Maybe my Speedy Hair Growth Theory is also the reason why I make decisions quickly.

Really quickly.  And most of the time it’s a good thing.  Once in awhile…I can jump a bit too quickly.

But that’s probably why I also get shit done.

You kind of have to like change, and be able to make decisions, in order to get shit done.

And that’s why I liked running my business.  It was in a constant state of change that required a million decisions as our services changed, our people changed, our operational models changed and our level of quality and expertise grew and evolved.

And I knew…if we didn’t change, we wouldn’t grow.  But we did grow.  And the business evolved into an amazing and successful company.  And then it sold.  And I was lucky enough to get the chance to change my life again, starting a whole new chapter in my life.

Initiating more changes as I go…and feeding my change junkie habit.

I approach change with a careful combination of stomachaches, nausea, and panic attacks.

Really, it’s a total party.

So I guess I’ll just say that change is kind of a bitch.

But really?  It’s not the change that’s tough.  Change is good.  Change is natural.

It’s what’s supposed to happen (because when things don’t change it’s just boring… and kind of pathetic).

What’s scary isn’t change itself, it’s The Unknown that gets me.  I hate The Unknown.

When I was a kid, every new experience was met with debilitating anxiety.  Why?  Well, other than the fact that I had (have) an (obvious) anxiety issue, it was because I didn’t know what would happen.

(This is where the stomachaches! and nausea! came into play.)

My mom would always tell me not to worry because, “Really?  What’s the worst that could happen?”

Well, Mother, I COULD DIE.

And my dad would tell me to stop worrying because it would eventually lead to an ulcer.

So not only did I worry about The Unknown, but also about the giant killer ulcer growing in my stomach.


So instead of embracing change, my fight or flight response has been conditioned to kick into full flight mode whenever something new comes along.

But I’ve been trying to let that go.

Because change is good!

Without change I’d still be unemployed and broke.

(Now I’m just broke!)

Without change I wouldn’t be going to grad school in the fall.

(So I’ll be even more broke!)

Without change I wouldn’t be getting married!


I wouldn’t have bangs!

The Unknown is still scary (and I still get panic attacks), but at least I can appreciate it.  At least I can see the good that The Unknown can bring.

(Though if one of you can give me a cheat sheet for grad school, I’d really like that.)

Topic: How will you survive the Zombie Apocalypse?

Cindy Thinks

Ally Thinks

Screw zombies, it doesn’t matter what kind of apocalypse we’re in for, because I’m ready.  I have a fully stocked pantry with hundreds of canned goods, tons of extra water, enough toilet paper to last at least 6 months and a lifetime supply of chocolate, ‘cause really, who wants to stick around without toilet paper or chocolate?

No…I’m not a doomsday kinda gal, it’s just that I like to be prepared.

And I’m not the only one thinking about this stuff.  As I’m sure you’re aware, we’re only a couple of years away from the famed end of the Mayan calendar (December, 2012), which many believe marks the end of civilization as we know it.  I never thought about it much, but then I watched a multi-part special last year on the History Channel and it got me thinking about the possibilities of life ending on earth.

I mean…I really don’t believe it will all end on 12/21/2012, but after watching that show, I did find myself having an irresistible urge to run out to the store to buy a case of canned soup.

Honestly though, I don’t think the Mayans knew something we don’t know.  I think they just figured they had created a big enough template for us to follow…and we would be able to take it from here.  Or they just ran out of stone.

But nonetheless…it makes you wonder.

I mean…what will you be doing as we get closer to December, 2012?  Will you be worried?  Will you be stocking up on canned goods?  Water?  Toilet Paper? Chocolate?

Well I know I’ll be ready…and I’ll be doing it in style!

I recently bought some property down in Ridgway Colorado (just outside of Telluride, CO) which I must say, is one of the most beautiful places on earth.  The mountains, the valley, the people…are all amazing.

And…I just started building on it so that I can live there part of the year, and play host to my family and friends…’cause it’s a place ya just gotta share.

So I figure I’ll share it with a few dozen carefully chosen people for the end of the Mayan Calendar (and potentially…the end of civilization as we know it).

But we’re not gonna sit around waiting for the end.   WE’RE GONNA PARTY!!

Because it ALSO just happens to be my “triple 12 birthday” (12-12-12)…and I figure that calls for one big 12 day party!!!

And if it does all end, then we go happily, and probably…really really drunk.  With plenty of canned goods, water, toilet paper and chocolate in the pantry.

Unfortunately though, I’ll have to limit how many people can come to my party (because I just don’t have enough canned soup to feed everyone).

So I came up with a process for selecting who will be part of the chosen few…with some ground rules (’cause you always need ground rules):

1.    Applications for the now infamous 12-12-12 bash will be accepted beginning 6-12-12.

2.    A written test including just a few select multiple choice questions and an essay explaining why you should be part of the chosen few (no more than 500 words please) will be included as part of the application process.

3.    Bribes will be accepted (along with donations of canned soup).

God I hope civilization doesn’t end before then…it would really screw up my plans.

I think it’s awesome how we all assume that when the zombie apocalypse happens we’ll be fighting the zombies, and not become one ourselves.  Statistically, most of us will have to be the actual yucky, undead daemons for it to be considered an apocalypse (at least I assume so), so odds are that if you’re reading this, you’ll be craving brains at some point.


Personally, I think I’ll be made into a zombie fairly early on.  I don’t like confrontation and I’m not in shape at all, so I’d be easy to catch.  I accept that my chances of surviving for very long are pretty slim.

(What?  I’m being realistic.)

So I think I would just give myself up to the brain eating devils as quickly and as painlessly as possible.  Maybe I’ll get really intoxicated and just go to sleep on the front lawn and hope the zombies do a quick job at transforming me…

Because really?  I don’t think that I want to spend my days hiding in my house and chasing zombies off of my front lawn with a knife or gun.

Besides, I’m not allowed to wield weapons.

(Mike believes that I’ll injure myself every time I cut a tomato for dinner, so I’m going to assume that using a machete to cut off the head of a zombie won’t be allowed…)

(Just so you all know, I’m open to suggestions for weapon alternatives.  We’re all going to be in this together, people, so it’s no time to keep your tactics a secret.)

Now, if I could get to a place without zombies (preferably some sort of fort or underground lair designed by my mother), I would probably invest in some serious weapon training.  Maybe I wouldn’t be able to hire a personal trainer or my own Sensei (because the strongest of our kind will all be fighting to save the world… or they’ll be dead… or undead?…), but I assume the Internet will have a plethora of helpful blogs and videos by that point.

(Oh wait.  There’s already plenty of information out there.  Of course.)

The way I see it: geeks love zombies, and geeks get shit done on the Internet, so I guarantee there will be a Wiki up in no time.

(OH MY GOD.  That also already exists. We all have no excuse if we’re unprepared.)

Hell, maybe I’ll get in shape…

(Except probably not.  It’s going to take a lot more than a violent apocalypse to get me to start running on a regular basis.)

What I’d really need is a kick-ass outfit.

(Priorities, people.)

I’m thinking something flattering, functional, comfortable, and easy to clean (because killing zombies is a super messy business).  BUT, even if I were one of the BEST zombie killers EVER (and let’s face it, with the right training… actually, I’ll most likely still be useless regardless of my training…), I probably wouldn’t actively seek out zombies.  I’d leave the mass destruction of them up to the government or ninjas or Woody Harrelson.

Instead, I’d hide myself away with a good book and lots of cupcakes.

(If the world is ending, dieting will NOT be my priority.)

(Note to self: make kick-ass outfit baggy and in slimming colors.)

Actually, I think that I would just be happy deferring all survival responsibilities to someone else.

(Hi Mom!)

PS: I’m inviting The Bloggess to Ridgway, because she’s our only hope.  Well, her and Mr. Harrelson…

No.  Expiration dates are a giant conspiracy from manufacturers to get us to throw out everything in our pantry and buy new soup or olives or ketchup in order to keep them in business.

(OK, maybe a little paranoid…but maybe not.)

I mean…what’s so bad about soup that’s been in a can in your pantry for lets say…6 years?  It’s in a can for God’s sake!  The cans’ purpose is to keep that food contained until you are ready to eat it. No air can get in, and they’re so loaded up with preservatives that no bacteria, bugs or other bad things could live in there anyway.  So what’s the big deal!?!

Note:  I think preservatives are one of the greatest things ever created.  They’re designed to preserve things…forever…and at my age, I eat as many things loaded with preservatives as I possibly can.

I will go so far as to say that preservatives have made expiration dates…obsolete.

Except for milk.  Which I don’t need an expiration date to tell me has gone bad.

Or cottage cheese.  Or anything dairy or meat/fish/poulty, or fruits and vegetables or leftovers left in the refrigerator for more than 5 days for that matter.  They all need to be tossed on a regular basis.  They don’t come with expiration dates…but I’m not stupid…I KNOW THEY EXPIRE!

But ketchup?  Come on!  That stuff has got to have a shelf life of 6.2 million years!!!

So what about medicines?  I confess, I don’t check the expiration date on pill bottles (I know, you’re shocked!).   I know I probably should, because that stuff might really do some harm if it’s past its prime – or worse, not provide the intended relief it was designed to provide.

But it takes so much time to go to the other room…find a pair of reading glasses…turn on enough light to read in the bathroom…find the expiration date on the pill bottle…and then make a decision if I’ve had it “too long” (since I don’t automatically believe the expiration date in the first place).

From years of experience however, I can tell you that Tums don’t loose their fast acting antacid relief even after they’ve been sitting in a drawer for about 5 years (although they no longer resemble the original shape or color of a Tum) .  Advil still works even if it hasn’t seen the light of day since the First Bush was President.  And, Vicodin NEVER stops working.

But antibiotics are a different story.  I was married to a doctor after all so I KNOW that if you find a rogue antibiotic laying in the bottom of a pill bottle you probably shouldn’t take it…even if you’re dying.  In fact, you should be wondering if the illness you were suffering from way back when was actually cured, since you obviously didn’t finish taking all of your antibiotics at that time!!!

In all fairness though, expiration dates can tell us how long the manufacturer thinks their product will be most effective…but it’s up to each of us to determine if using their product whenever, is still good enough.  Obviously, if they really thought it would be dangerous for us to use their product after a certain amount of time, they would build in a self-destruct mechanism to destroy it on the expiration date.  And since that isn’t the case…I don’t think expiration dates matter at all.

I should subtitle this post: Stories of my Father.


I can remember sitting at the kitchen counter watching my mom clean out the refrigerator.  She was busy tossing expired milk, old yogurt, and moldy bread in the trashcan.  (That makes it sound like we only had rotting food… we only SOMETIMES had rotting food.)  My dad was busy taking the food OUT of the trashcan, saying things like, “just cut off the moldy parts and it’s perfectly fine”, and “do you know what yogurt is?  Bacteria laden OLD MILK!”


I was sick earlier this year and had a cough that kept me up at night, so I asked my dad for some cough syrup.  He gave me a bottle of brown liquid that was apparently “Black Cherry Explosion” flavored.

Me: “Dad, this expired in 1994.”

Dad: “Medicine doesn’t go bad.  It’s just a ploy to get you to buy more.”

Me: “Dad, do you realize that you have not only had this for over a decade, but you actually packed this in a box and moved it to a new house… TWICE.”

Dad: “Well, it’s probably just extra potent now!”

Me: “Yeah, but will it kill me?”

Dad: “Maybe.”

Me: “Awesome.”

(I tried not to take it, but at some point I got so desperate that I just closed my eyes and took a swig.  It worked, but for my own peace of mind, I bought a new bottle.)


Dad: “We have two kinds of salad dressing… Oh wait, they’re the same kind.”

Mike: “Brian, they’re different colors.  How OLD are these?”

Dad: “Hm… Shut up and eat your salad, Mike.”


I went down to Denver to my grandmother’s house.  We went to the basement to clean out her office.  Between the shelves of Christmas decorations and newspapers from the 1960s were cabinets with food.  There was a small glass jar with artichoke hearts.  The liquid inside had almost solidified and there was yellow stuff floating inside it.  The expiration date had faded off.  At least I know where my dad gets it from.


I live with a boy who throws away milk 2 days before the expiration date.  Now I’m the one taking the yogurt out of the trash.

So do expiration dates matter?  According to my dad, not so much. But have you ever accidentally covered your salad with really old dressing that your father refuses to throw away?  Trust me, it’s not a pleasant experience.