Friday, August 7, 2020

7 Quick Takes about Security Questions, Things Your Preschooler Likes More Than You, and a New Reason to Love Alanis Morissette

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?


I couldn't get into my Amazon account, so I called customer service to find out what was going on. 

The first person I talked to asked me the obvious ("did you try refreshing the page? trying it on another browser?") and then transferred me to a second person who was very serious about the whole thing.

"It appears that your account is locked, so I'm going to ask you your security questions. If you get them right I can unlock it, but if you get them wrong" and it seemed to me that she paused ominously here for dramatic effect "I can't do that and you'll have to call back."

Now I was really nervous. 

One at a time, she asked me my three security questions. After each answer, there was a pregnant pause while she checked them against whatever it was I said in 2004. 

I kept wondering if this next question was going to be where I failed. What was the color of my first car? Had I interpreted that as the first car I was allowed to drive regularly or the first car I bought? I didn't know. I couldn't remember. It was so stressful.

Luckily I passed, got back into my account, and it was honestly one of the easiest and quickest customer service experiences I've had in a while. Ominous warnings from the customer service rep aside.


Plans for our finishing our basement are moving slightly faster than their regular glacial pace, and I've started looking at couches to put down there since the one we have is a scary, disgusting old relic.

I ran across a good-looking one selling on Facebook Marketplace. In fact, it looked brand new. I clicked for more information and there wasn't much, but the person selling it said that they "purchased but it did not fit in their space."

However, she failed to include the dimensions of the couch in the listing so I think she may have subconsciously wanted someone else to suffer the same fate.

Also, I felt kind of bad messaging her for the couch's dimensions so I could check if it would fit in our space. You know, since she'd apparently forgotten to do that and I stood to profit from that.


I was looking around on a coupon app
I have on my phone, and accidentally stumbled across this:

Is this a joke? Is charcoal some type of cleaning agent? For real? Because the box looks like one of those gag gifts you can buy at Christmastime. I have to look this up.


This week has been church youth camp for my two older girls. It's different, being a mix of virtual activities and small group activities you go to from your house.

Some of the days have had a theme, and Tuesday's theme was "crazy hair." My kids are never interested in dress-up days at school but apparently camp is another story. 

One of my daughters asked me to make a huge bun on top of her head with eight little braids trailing from it, and then we stuck googly eyes hot glued to bobby pins in the bun so it looked like an octopus.

The other girls at camp named it Phil and referred to it as a separate entity from my daughter for the rest of the day.

After picking her up from a camp hike, we had to swing by Dollar Tree to get something. Mad props to the cashier, who did not even bat an eye at the fact that there was a customer in his line with googly eyes in her hair.


I finally got around to watching Hamilton on Disney+ with Phillip and our girls this week. 

Despite all the hype, my expectations weren't very high. The last stage musical I liked was Les Mis, and that was 20 years ago. I got my hopes up when everyone went out of their minds over Wicked, but then I saw it and was utterly unimpressed. I started to think maybe musicals just weren't my thing.

However, I loved Hamilton. The effects, the dancing, the singing: it was all amazing. And the only thing better than every scene with King George was  never mind. There's nothing better than the scenes with King George.

Despite the fact that a hip-hop founding father stage musical seems like a pretty random concept (I don't think anyone has ever wondered what cabinet meetings would look like if they were rap battles,) I liked the interpretation. And I'm sure high school history teachers wet their collective pants when all of a sudden their students knew what year the Battle of Yorktown was and could quote Washington's Farewell Address word for word.

I'll definitely watch again, with one caveat: I'm skipping the adultery part. The older I get and the more people I know whose lives have been ruined and families have been torn apart by infidelity, the less I can stomach even the suggestion of it happening. 


And now a sentimental moment from my 4-year-old.

Me: You're my sweet boy! I just love you so much!

4-year-old: Do you like me more than Scout and Piper [our pet rats]?

Me: Yes, I like you WAY more.

4-year-old: I like the rats better than you.

Me: Okay...

4-year-old: Because they're so cute!

Me: Hmm. Do you think I'm cute?

4-year-old: [snickers] No. [skips away to play]

Another funny thing was when I told him earlier this week that he was handsome, and then asked if he knew what 'handsome' meant. He cocked his head, furrowed his brow, and guessed, "Like... fancy?"


Do you know Alanis Morissette? In the 1990s, her angsty glory was all over the radio. Being an angsty teenager myself, naturally I loved her.

Well, she's back. I haven't thought about her in years, but recently she released a new album and went on The Tonight Show to sing from it. 

Because of the pandemic it was a virtual appearance, which she performed at home with her daughter on her hip.

That NEVER would have happened pre-2020 and I loved it.

It's weird, but I feel like this pandemic has made us see each other's human side a little more.

Because everyone is communicating over Zoom, I'm seeing the people at church in regular clothes instead of just their Sunday best. We're talking with people in their (possibly messy) houses instead of their offices. I'm watching my kids' teachers run class meetings with their own kids toddling in to ask for raisins. 

I know that makes things harder in a lot of ways, but it also shows that there's more to us than whatever perfectly put-together image we try to project. And actually, we're a lot more like each other than we thought.

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