Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Time Well Wasted

So when I tell people that I'm blogging these days, I usually get one of three responses:

1. Something positive. Either "oh, I'll check it out" or "that sounds fun" or something else harmless and indifferent.

2. Something annoying. Like an Urban Hipster op-ed piece on blogging. Usually something about blogging being "inherently narcissistic." That's eight syllables in two words, so I don't pay attention to these types of comments - usually made by intellectual types. I don't hear them. I'm too busy thinking about me.

3. Something honest, like "That sounds like a waste of time." This one is true. Blogging is nothing if not a waste of time.

That said, I think it's a pretty good waste of time. I think blogging has saved me from wasting time doing things that are an even bigger waste of time. Here are a few things that I've thought of doing recently, but have instead chosen to 'waste time' blogging:

The Vytorin Petition: I've considered starting a petition aimed at the Vytorin Marketing Department - or the agency that is trying to squeeze additional value out of this one idea. They're the people that have the marathon advertising campaign about the two sources of cholesterol (food and family). So the petition would basically state that a) we get it - everyone in your target demographic realizes that there are two causes of cholesterol AND b) stop it - nobody has an aunt named 'Arjuna' and if we did, she wouldn't look like 'spicy tuna'. You've run out of foods that look like people, and you've run out of names that rhyme with foods.

As you can see, I'm pretty passionate about this one. It'll probably get done, even though blogging has stopped me from starting this campaign for the past couple months.

Impulse buys: This didn't used to be such a big deal. Back in the day, this was just a copy of US Weekly at the grocery store checkout. These impulse buys will still happen (how else would I know who wore it best). The impulse buys that blogging stops are the more dangerous, online impulse buys. Like a few nights ago when something made me think of the original New York Seltzer (see 12 oz glass bottles, 1988 - 1993). This random thought led to Google, which led to some discussion board filled with people who think about New York Seltzer way more than they should, which led to an overpriced case of black cherry original New York Seltzer on Craig's List. Keep in mind that this product has not been produced since 1993. Anyway, blogging stopped my quest for seltzer short of providing my MasterCard security code.

Thinking about things that I'll never understand: I'll still overthink small, unimportant things (see last post). But I think the blog stops me from thinking about some of the mysteries of life. Things like "how do fax machines work" or "why doesn't cow waste contain more visible corn - it's pretty much all they eat" or "what goes through a person's head when they decide to buy sweatpants with writing on the butt." These are questions that I've struggled with for quite some time. I used to think about them during long runs in the country (that explains the one about cows). Now I just think about my next blog topic instead. If I'm not blogging enough, that probably means that I'm not running enough.

So thanks for reading this narcissistic waste of time. Oh, and don't try to explain how fax machines work, I enjoy the mystery. If you grew up on a farm and have a decent grasp on the cow/corn thing, feel free to explain. Or if you want to start the Vytorin petition, I'll be the first to sign.

YIFY Goes Global

I wish I had a unifying theme for this post, but I really don't. Other than: I'm in Europe. Here are a few stories that I'll share via blog so Nate doesn't have to hear me repeat them when I get back next week. . .

I walked into the Haagen-Dazs and in my best Spanish, asked for a chocolate ice cream cone. As with most of the Spanish people I've encountered in the service and foodservice industries, this guy spoke English and replied to me in English, as if he was embarassed at my attempt at the foreign language. But how did he know that I was an English speaker?

Clue #1: I over-do it. Comparative example:

Me (in Barcelona, in translation): "Excuse me, sir, please. I would like chocolate."
Me (at the South Bend Chocolate Company in Indianapolis, in English): "Chocolate."

Clue #2: I try to order way over at the side of the ice cream shop, down toward the end of the ice cream case. Since the scooper is typically centered, this requires an awkward movement for the scooper. But this spot is where I'm out of earshot of other store patrons. No comparative example can be achieved in written form.

Clue #3: I have a bad accent.

He handed me the cone and asked, "Vote for Obama, Hillary or McCain?"

I replied, "How did you know I was American?" This guy knew I spoke English, but I could have been British, right? As much as I try to look and play local, I think I'm as American as they come. So we ended up talking a little about politics, and it's nothing new to say how surprised I was that this Spanish guy knew so much about the American election. But this guy was 17 or 18.

I just arrived in Barcelona via Frankfurt, where I was visiting a college friend, Jens. Jens was a fraternity brother of both Nate and mine, and we keep in semi-contact that grants us just enough permission to call each other up when we're in town in our respective cities. Or in my case, to stay at his house for three days when I'm in Germany.

On Sunday, Jens and I went to cheer on his friend, Fabian, in an adult soccer league. Afterwards, we drove Fabian home, and Fabian asked me what were some differences between the US and Germany. Here's what I came up with:

Pork: the German word for pork is spelled a lot like "swine." Germans eat a lot of pork, and German restaurants feature a lot of different types of pork on their menus. Especially since the word "swine" is unappetizing, I steered clear of this menu item. I told Fabian that in Germany, it's chicken that's the "other white meat." He didn't get the joke.

Hatchbacks: because of space constraints (streets are small) and gas prices (they're at almost $10/gallon. . .), most Germans drive hatchbacks. [I'd insert a joke about hatchbacks here, but this just makes sense].

Screens for Windows: at least in Frankfurt, every house had their windows open without concerns for bugs and mosquitoes flying in. Jens' dad explained that their climate isn't good for mosquitoes, but he anticipates that the climate change is going to affect that.

I hope Europe brings me some sort of ironic or sarcastic realization that will drive my next themed blogpost, but this will have to do.

Any suggestions from you, loyal reader, on hotspots to visit whilst in Barcelona?

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Pleased to Meet You

I have a bad habit of overthinking things that could be classified as unimportant and then making big decisions without really thinking about them. My college decision was based on the golf coach. The golf coach who retired before I started college. We bought our house (or the dirt where we would have the house built) on the first morning of our house hunt. We didn't even make it to the suburb where we were planning to look.

One of the seemingly unimportant things that I spend lots of time thinking about is how to introduce Kate when she meets people that I already know. Most people would classify this as unimportant or just reactionary. Most people would just say "Hi (insert acquaintance name), this is my wife, Kate." I've never really liked this approach. It seems old-fashioned and possessive to me. Like it's some kind of code for saying "This is the woman who cooks the family supper while I tend to the land." Also, of all of the things that she does and is, I don't think being "my wife" is the most impressive. It isn't something she'd put on her resumé. So "this is my wife, Kate" is out.

I've also tested out "Hi (insert acquaintance name), this is Kate." What I've found is that when I avoid using any label/title, people start thinking that you have some kind of complicated relationship that is too complex to sum up in one word. Like we're some kind of Jerry and Elaine or Ross and Rachel or Dawson and Joey or Seth and Summer couple. This is clearly not the case. So using no title/label won't work.

Lately I've gone with "Hi (insert acquaintance name), this is Kate, my wife. This method puts her in front of the possessive "my wife" but the downside is that usually as soon as someone hears the name, they don't wait through the comma pause to hear the title - they just usually go in for the awkward handshake or side-hug. So even though this is the method that I'm going with right now, I'm not convinced that it's the best.

There are definitely worse introduction techniques. Kate and I had a former coworker who always led with "This is my Beautiful Wife [pause] (insert wife's name). That one was really bad. Whenever I'd see her around the office, I'd just think of her husband's introduction and I'd throw up a little bit. We had another coworker who was in her mid 30s and thought that the term 'boyfriend' seemed too high school, so she'd just refer to him as her 'partner'. That one would lead to people making false assumptions about her sexual orientation. I guess 'partner' is one of those words that no longer means what it used to mean - sort of like 'urban' no longer has anything to do with living in a city.

So if you've met me and you haven't met Kate, just come right up and say "oh you must be Kate - I've heard so much about you." Or I guess you can just stand there and watch me struggle through the introduction - that's probably what I'd do. If you have any suggestions on this one, let me know. Even if you're suggestion is for me to stop thinking about stuff like this.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Seat's Saved

People make a big deal about seating assignments. Everyone has an airplane story about being stuck between the wrong seatmates which, OMG, made it the longest ride of their lives!!!! But it's true--the wrong seat assignment can ruin a trip or any situation, really. Nowadays, I avoid flying Southwest altogther to ensure I can reserve a window or aisle (depending on the length of the trip). Even knowing you're stuck in the middle is worse than getting on the plane and being forced into it. But getting a good seat assignment is worth bragging about; just ask me about my first class trip to Buenos Aires.

Outside of airlines, seating assignments are important, too. In grade school, classmates wished they had my last name--mine starts with "T"--because it earned me a consistent spot in the fourth or fifth row back from the teacher. Out of the teacher's eye, you could get away trading Garbage Pail Kids and playing pencil pop.

But you know me; I wasn't throwing spitwads with the Smiths, Thomases and Youngs. No, I was taking notes and tucking in my collared shirt. Sidenote: the one time I took advantage of my back-of-the-class last name position, I folded and flicked a paper football. Just my luck: it landed near the eye of this girl named Kathryn. She claimed it hit her in the eye and blinded her. No worries, gentle readers: her eyes are fine. I see her walking around downtown without the aid of eyeglasses, or even contacts. My punishment for launching this "missle" ("missle" was the word used on the "Pink Slip" I carried with me) in the seventh grade was my first trip to the principal's office. For those curious, I received my one (and only) in-school punishment. My assigned seat for the following day was ISS, or "in school suspension" with the vice principal. Kathryn, I hope you're happy.

In middle school gym class, we started every class by sitting in assigned rows on the gym floor. This seated line-up eased the attendance process for our gym teachers before we embarked on learning a new hybrid ball sport that the gym teacher made up (e.g. basketrugby). I'm not making this up. The worst part was that we had multiple-choice (remember ScanTron?) tests on the rules to the gym teacher's fake game. You know me; I could have used some more practice on basketball.

Swimming competitively earned me a pass out of high school gym class, though the assigned seat concept was fairly consistent in classes through high school. I went to a high school of 3,000+ students, and I wonder if my seating assignments for four years resulted in my knowing the R, S, U, and V last namers moreso than the those with last names starting with the beginning letters of the alphabet. Probably not, because at my high school graduation, I sat next to a guy I'd never met in my four years of going to high school. His last name also started with "T-A."

The idea of assigned seats faded in college, but my assigned seat at my college graduation was next to my ex-girlfriend. Those four-and-a-half hours passed with a little awkward small talk and a lot of sweating under my black cap & gown.

Assigned seats give everyone a sense of belonging, a spot in the world. Just think how many awkward tray-holding moments I'd have avoided by having an assigned seat in the middle school lunchroom. My parents knew the potential trouble with unassigned seats at mealtime, and assigned my three sisters and me to permanent spots around our kitchen table (we also had assigned spots in the family station wagon). But people crave routines, and I think we prefer assignments to a free-for-all. Just think: people tend toward sitting in the same spot, even when it's not assigned.

My first job out of college, I had an assigned desk in an abandoned floor of the bankrupt company's headquarters. I shared the full floor with four other people. The desk (and the entire company) felt like a jail cell. Ironically, my first seating assignment at my current company was in a large, windowless closet. Despite the size, we had some good times there. We named it "The Den," and on Fridays, I'd blast "Do You Realize??" by the Flaming Lips on my sweet computer speakers. I miss those days.

I'm switching to a new job at work. And the new job is in a different department, which means a new desk assignment. This might end up being great. But I'm just so used to walking into work, saying hey to my workboo, hugging Nate (see earlier post), then powering up my brain and computer at my assigned desk. Nate and I sit next to each other. We have postcards of our travels on the wall. We know "who tall" people are. We have The Abuse Robot as a pet. We like our neighbors.

So now it's new job, new seat. I'll let you know how the new assignment sits with me.

Friday, May 16, 2008

House For Sale

As many of you already know, Kate and I are selling our house. I guess we technically aren't 'selling' it, but we are decorating our lawn with a big sign and cleaning more often than we usually do. There are a few positives that have come out of this whole house selling experience:

1. Our house always smells like chocolate chip cookies
2. I'm able to spend more time and money on my lawn and chalk it up as an investment in 'curb appeal'
3. Gilbert is getting more exercise. I have to walk him during showings, and for some reason people like to spend lots of time in our house. 45 minutes to see our house? Seriously...I don't think I spent that much time touring Graceland.

Anyway, if I've learned anything from HGTV and TLC, it's that selling a house is usually a sentimental time for the house sellers. For some reason it doesn't really feel like that for Kate and I. Maybe it's because we're not really sentimental people. We always mention that when we watch Wife Swap or The Biggest Loser and the reunited couples always freak out like the husband has been in Iraq for 12 months, as opposed to just being in Cleveland for the past 2 weeks or being at adult fat camp for 10 weeks. I think we'd just say "hey, how's it going" and then Kate would probably start telling me stories about what happened at her work while I was away in reality television land.

I also think that the non-sentimental move might be a result of our experience in our house. It has been a good house. Nothing has really gone wrong. I don't have any stories about when the pipes burst, or when the basement flooded. Also, we don't know our neighbors at all. I've met them a few times over the past four years, but still don't know their names. I've considered stealing the neighbor's mail just long enough to get his first name, but I hear that's a federal offense.

We also don't really have any of those coffee commercial memories in our house. No Christmas mornings or family Thanksgivings or anything like that. We do have a few lasting memories:

1. The time the church bus stopped at our house and asked Kate if her parents were home and if she would be interested in going to Jesus Camp for the summer. I think she was 25 at the time.

2. The two times that our rural Indiana, cookie-cutter neighborhood has been featured on the local news station. Once for a neighbor shooting her boyfriend and the other time for people breaking into cars and stealing purses and iPods. We were so proud. Since we don't really talk to our neighbors, we probably wouldn't have known about either of these occurrences if it wasn't for our 90 seconds of fame on the Indy news.

Thanks for stopping by for this trip down memory lane. Oh, and if you're looking for a new house, just let me know. You can help yourself to a cookie.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


Nate posts more than me. I admire his commitment to the yourselfinfiveyears readers. I also admire Nate's ability to stay direct with me in his attempts to get me to blog more.

"Did you blog?" he'll ask me in the morning (post-hug). Other times, he'll say, "you need to blog tonight. Blog about [insert topic]."

That's something you have to admire about Nate: he's direct. Me? I'm more passive aggressive. It's a skill (?) that I learned over time that helps me to fulfill my lifelong quest to avoid controversy. (As a sidenote: earlier this year, I dedicated myself to "boldness" in 2008. I'm attempting to embrace the benefits that can result from speaking your mind. So far, that boldness has landed me with exactly zero dates, and some upset friends and family members). But, back to 'voluntelling.' Here's an example.

Last week, I was on a client call, and it went something like this:

Me: "Sorry to volunteer you, Charles, but I'm wondering if you could [insert task]"
Charles: "Sure, no problem."
Client: "Um, I don't think that's called 'volunteering,' R. J., I think that's called 'voluntelling.'"

Since then, this hybrid verb, 'voluntelling,' has shown up repeatedly in my life. I submitted an entry to Urban Dictionary for it. Not only because it's funny, but because there are so many times throughout a day that voluntelling is used as a way to instrust, ask or demand someone to do something.

I got a taste of my own medicine last week when I was voluntold to share my allotment of two swimming lanes at the weekly swim lesson I teach. In this instance, the aquatics director approached me on the pool deck:

Her: "Hi R. J."
Me: "Hi"
Her: "I wanted to run something past you"
Me: "Sure, what's going on?"
Her: "You don't mind giving one of your swim lanes to Peter"
Me: ". . . "

I had no response.

Because there was no response; there was no question! To voluntell is to make a statement that's cleverly diguised as a question, but it's positioned in a way you can't refuse. Or if you do refuse, you're going to later say, "you know, that really wasn't worth it." Because it just wasn't. So instead, you agree. Or don't say anything in response. Because the voice and inflection made you think it was a question. And you were momentarily under the spell. A swaying pocketwatch. You're getting sleepy. You've been told. Voluntold.

So this week, be on the look out for:

"you wouldn't mind if. . . "
"sorry to volunteer you. . . "
"you can't see. . ."
"you probably wouldn't. . . "
"you don't care. . ."
"sorry that I didn't mention it earlier. . . "

I'm sure there are others. Sorry to ask, but you wouldn't mind commenting on what I'm missing on this list.

The Notebook

Sorry to disappoint, but this is not a tribute to the Nicholas Sparks novel, or a tribute to the dreamy Ryan Gosling. This is a post about the notebook that one of my friends keeps on her desk at work.

The notebook is a list of words that shouldn't be used. Ever. There are all kinds of words in the notebook. Some are corporate buzzwords, while others are just words that give you a sick to your stomach feeling when you hear them. Here is a random sample of words that are currently listed in the notebook:


The notebook has been a part of our office culture for years. I say 'years' because it was there when I started, and I'm too lazy to find out when the notebook was actually created. I think 'years' also adds to the legend of the notebook.

The notebook is democratic. Anyone can offer a word to add, and submissions are rarely vetoed. Words don't even have to be used in the office to be added. The creator of the notebook went to the pet store with her daughter over the weekend, and that's how 'newt' was added to the list.

I think everyone has a notebook in their head. Just a list of words that you don't use for whatever reason. When you hear these words, you stop listening to the notebook violator. If you'd like to share some of the words in your notebook, post them as comments. There's a good chance that they are already in the notebook. Oh, and keep it clean...this is a family blog. Seriously...my parents read this stuff.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

A Numbers Guy

I'm a numbers guy. I don't know when this started, but I think it's getting worse. On Saturday, RJ and I ran a relay race that required each member of the five person team to run about 13 miles. This took us about 11 hours. Ugh, I wasn't even trying and I just used three numbers. Damn, there's another one.

Anyway, back to the race. It was pretty fun and miserable at the same time. It's an off-trail run through a state park, which means lots of bushwhacking and creek-crossing and hill climbing. After completing my final leg of the relay, I proudly announced that I finished the leg by climbing up 166 steps. Like anyone cares how many steps there were. I count pretty much everything. I count how many miles I've flown in the past month and how many days out of a year I spend driving to work. I like to add up how many (or few) days I'll be in the office during a given period of time. I have three calculators on my desk, but typically do calculations in my head and use the calculator(s) just to double-check my math. Or I just use the calculator to type sequences of numbers that when flipped upside down, spell inappropriate words. That's a different problem.

There are a few situations where being a numbers guy can be helpful. I've never had a keep a scorecard when I play golf. I just keep my score (and the rest of the group's scores) in my head. I can also figure out how much longer I have to run when I get to the 40K sign during a marathon.

This really only gets me into trouble when I use the dollar sign with the numbers. I can't buy anything without thinking what else could be purchased for a similar amount of money. Sure we could buy a new couch, or we could use that money to buy groceries for the next two and a half months. And it's not like the two things are mutually exclusive - we could buy both the couch and the groceries - it's just that something makes me do the math. And something else makes me explain/share the math with others who really don't care. During meetings I'll go around the room and (in my head) estimate salaries of everyone in attendance, then divide those to get an hourly rate per person, and then add up all of the hourly rates to try to figure out the cost of the meeting. If you work with me, I promise I only did that at my last job.

I don't think the current political race is helping this problem at all. I'm the guy who stays up until 1:00 AM to see if Obama gets the required 61% of the vote in Lake County to carry Indiana. I'm pretty sure most people just go to bed and look in the paper to see who has the check mark next to their name.

I'm not really sure how to wrap up this post. RJ is the one who is good with words, so I should have him write the conclusion. I'll just climb up fourteen steps and get 360 minutes of sleep before driving 22.3 miles to work.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Next Blog >>

This is not my wife's favorite blog. Well, she might not have a favorite, but there are lots of other blogs that she spends much more time on than Yourself in Five Years. I think it's because she has heard all of my thoughts about Ann Curry and pepperoni pizza and adults wearing stickers for the past five years or so. She reads our posts. She usually likes when RJ writes. Her constructive criticism for me is always the same:

1. Your blog is boring - you need pictures
2. Why don't you ever blog about Gilbert (our dog)

Kate has adopted a new form of random entertainment. Similar to the 'shuffle' button on iTunes or the 'scan' button on the radio, Kate takes this approach with Blogger. Her new form of entertainment is to use the 'next blog' button on the upper left hand corner of the blogger interface (see it up there?). This link will take you to magical places. Actually it just randomly selects another blog for your reading enjoyment. Sometimes she has to click the button a couple of times - apparently the Spanish speaking world really likes blogging.

This exercise of nextblogging (yeah, it's a verb in our house) usually ends once she finds a blog that is written by a woman who writes about her children, her pets, or organic food (a new addition). This is the nextblogging jackpot. A dream scenario would be a woman talking about her day staying home with her two kids (preferably twins with some obscure medical condition) and how they interacted with their dog. Oh, and then they cooked some sort of kelp pizza. Livin' the dream. Sometimes she thinks she's found a winner, but then realizes at the end of the first post that there are strong religious undertones. The post starts out with the content that she's looking for (some woman talking about kids or dogs or organic food) but then ends with something about how their trip to the grocery store or beach or dog park was only possible because of Jesus.

This is similar to scanning the radio in an area where you don't know the stations. You land on 92.1. Song sounds alright...maybe something new. Then comes the chorus: God is love, God is love. Nothing against Christian Rock (or Christian blogs) but if it's not what you're looking for, it can really sneak up on you. Then you get mad at yourself for ignoring the signs - a station between 89.1 - 92.7 and an acoustic guitar.

Okay, back to nextblogging. I'd like everyone who is reading this post to nextblog and then give a comment with what you found. I have a feeling that we'll notice a few trends - or at least you'll find some new cheap entertainment.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008


Even though most people claim not to go on a 20-minute cleaning frenzy right before company comes over, I think most people do. Well, I do. But that's changed.

A year ago, I hired a housekeeper. I'm not a slob, but I realized that I wasn't taking care of my new house. I'm pretty good about keeping the kitchen clean, the clean laundry hidden in the dryer, and taking the garbage out every week. But when it comes to the bathroom sink, or vacuuming in general, I'm not dependable. My sister recommended a housecleaner; her name is Debbie.

Debbie comes once a month and does all of the 'deep cleaning' that I used to neglect. She comes at the end of every month. And as ironic as it is, I find myself running around the house before work on the day that Debbie comes to clean. It's partly because Debbie wants the house picked up, "I'm not a maid," she told me when we first talked on the phone, "I'm a housekeeper." Other than requesting only Bounty brand paper towels, she bring her own supplies and does a consistently great job. And I trust her. So I'll pick up before she comes; I think that's fair.

There are a lot of great things about Debbie, including:

1. Well, she cleans the house.
2. She arranges non-decorative items. Examples include: pasta boxes arranged in a diagonal design on the kitchen counter and remote controls perpendicular to each other on the coffee table.
3. At the end of last summer, she left me a recipe for pesto (because I had a basil plant that was near-death on the back porch).
4. She leaves two pieces of candy and an inspirational quote with every housecleaning.
5. Sometimes she makes my bed.

Debbie has a key to my house, knows my alarm code and has now been my housecleaner for a year. Ask me if I've ever met her. I'll reply, "no."

No, I've never met Debbie. Sure, I've talked to her on the phone, but she came on the recommendation of one of my sisters who knew her as a client. I would call this inherent trust of a stranger "uncharacteristic" of my typical vetting process. But here I am, one year later, blogging on the couch in my extremely clean house.

But from the other side. . . what does Debbie think of me? It's not the same as officefolk who can cobble together a personality profile of their clients by Googling + Facebook stalking + analyzing their attempt at smalltalk in the first few minutes of a call. No, Debbie's in my house and she's free to snoop all she wants. What does my house, my mess, my dirty sink, my unfolded laundry say about me?

Monday, May 5, 2008

Adult + Sticker = Lame

Tomorrow is election day in Indiana. For once, this is a really exciting time in the Hoosier State. I don't think that Indiana has ever mattered in national elections. We've never been a swing state and typically only get national candidates to stop over on their way to Illinois or Ohio. Our only real excitement on election day is finding out if we'll be the first state officially 'called' by Wolf Blitzer during the presidential race.

But tomorrow is different and voter turnout will be high. The one downside of having an exciting election day in Indiana is that we'll have more adults wearing stickers. If there's one thing that upsets me more than Ann Curry, it's adults wearing stickers. This usually only happens on election day (I Voted!) and when there's a blood drive at work (I Donated Blood!). It doesn't matter who the sticker-wearer is...if you're wearing a sticker, we'll probably be enemies for at least a day. Oh, and I know that voting and donating blood are good things and if you're a sticker wearer, then I'm sorry. Please don't take it personally. I would call it a pet peeve, but one of our loyal readers told me that I can't use that expression anymore.

Side note: My wife just told me that she wore a sticker on Friday. I guess it said "Casual for a Cause" and she donated a few dollars to wear jeans to work with the money going to some cause. My sticker on my wear jeans to work days would just say "No, I'm Just Lazy" or "Didn't get around to Laundry."

The one positive thing that comes from adult sticker wearing is that it provides another opportunity for office wagering. I enjoy taking on the role of office oddsmaker (or bookie), taking bets on everything from how many times some person say some buzzword during some meeting, to setting an over/under for the length of time that a new employee will last. No money really changes hands here, just something to do at work. With sticker wearing, you can just have your friends pick the coworker most likely to wear a sticker on election day or blood drive day. If there's a tie and multiple people choose a sticker-wearer, you can use number of bumper stickers on the employee's car as a tiebreaker.

I'm not sure why sticker wearing upsets me as much as it does. Most of the time when adults do things that only a child should do, I have the opposite reaction. I can't get mad at an adult wearing mittens or adults riding a tandem bicycle. I've tried. Can't do it. Doesn't matter who you are or what you did to me. I'm not sure what would happen if I saw an adult wearing both a sticker and mittens. I guess we'll have to wait until November to find out.