Post the Hundred-and-Thirty-Seventh: Blogiversary Extravaganza!

Welcome, Gentle Reader, to my Blogiversary Extravaganza! We have some very special surprises today. First of all, look under your chair – did you find the keys to a BRAND NEW CAR?


I hope not, because I didn’t break into your house. I respect you too much, Gentle Reader – you come here, and read my humble little offerings. My cocktail party stories, my anecdotes, my triumphs and my tribulations – they’re all for you. Thank you for reading.

You may have noticed a few changes about the site. They’re all over. Explore them, enjoy them. I’ve also laboriously gone through all my old posts, adding photos, adding jokes, making early entries fit the style we’ve grown into together. There are a few easter eggs hidden in those old posts, actually – I would tell you, because I think they’re hilarious, but it’ll be better if you find them for yourself.

So what does a Blogiversary Extravaganza entail, if I’m not giving stuff away? Um.  This?

Blogiversary Extravaganza

Do you remember all the wonderful times we’ve had together, Gentle Reader? You were there with me while I rode that camel, and again in the haunted castle; you’ve been with me at plays, soirees, and seances. I even felt close enough to you to share my beauty secrets – and my indiscretions! We’ve had some wonderful conversations.

But it hasn’t been all skittles and beer, talking about Tylers One through Four and making music videos. No! Who could forget the drama this fall, when Sally Mae the Troll found a post I’d made last January, and made impertinent claims of insider knowledge of my family? Or how I had to neglect my blog for a month or two, after my roommates and I were forced from our home at gunpoint? Thank Providence for the silly little posts, the ones that don’t tell a story and are just sort of bizarre, and contain gems like these, to make us feel better about all that drama:

Fucking Centaurs, yall Ghost award Tesla

Honestly, Gentle Reader, I never thought I would become this obsessed with blogging. Truthfully, today’s post isn’t about a Whimsical Adventure – it is a Whimsical Adventure. Over the last year of blogging, I’ve met some wonderful people full of excellent advice –

Thank you, Wise Councilors!

Thank you, Wise Councillors!

– I wandered through the wilderness until I found a path; I have battled strange and angry creatures (Hi again, Sally Mae!); I have found both heroes and followers of my own, and like all who travel the Hero’s Circle, I have learned a lot about myself.

I even, with your help, Gentle Reader, published a book (available here for puchase, yo).

Thank you for all your love and support, Readers. I love you, too. Even Sally Mae. And you know what, Reader? This is your day too! I’d love to hear what you want to see more of – shall we bring back Music Monday? I want to know what you want less of – shall we nix the Poetic Interludes? Do you like the site redesign? Loathe it? Want more guest posts, or for me to link to you? Let me know. With your feedback, we might just make it through Year the Second – together.


And now, for your pleasure, a couple of interesting things from behind the scenes here (I left them until the end, because you might not find them as interesting as I did):

Judging from the search results and most popular posts, I guess your ideal post from me would involve a whimsical husband having an adventure with the gay ghost of Amanda Palmer’s bust, but the implications of that are a little worrying. How about the top search terms bringing people here, instead?

  • Amanda Palmer’s Tits
  • Ladies Masturbating (???)
  • Lavender Marriage
  • Ghosts Carrying a Chair
  • Antique Victorian Medical Wimshurst Machine
  • Jazz Age Castration
  • Tyler J. Yoder
  • How to Deal with Whimsical Husband
  • Whimsical Camel
  • Fucking a Reverend Sister (Really, people?)
  • Whimsical Names for a Dance
  • Vomiting Undigested Unchewed Food
Remember me, from Post the Forty-Second?

Remember me, from Post the Forty-Second?

There are also some truly spectacular spam comments from over the past year. Some of my favorites – none of them are remotely relevant to what I’ve written.

  • Boil 1 to two leaves and make a tea when anguish sets in.
  • I felt extremely ashamed to state, ‘I possess the background and also the education, but however below I am at 260 lbs,’ she mentioned. “I was such as the hairdresser who doesn’t have excellent hair.”
  • The “incorrigible leech” moved in to the property over the assets, residing rentfree right until 2009.
  • Mike Keibler was incredible at present. He is just a little dude and he performs ideal subject for us.
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Post the Hundred-and-Thirty-Sixth: Holiday Decor

Special Note: I really phoned it in today, Gentle Reader. I apologize in advance – but I did promise photos of my humble chamber. Try to enjoy, if you can.

If you’re like me, Gentle Reader, your everyday decor is a trifle dark. This can make decorating for holidays a little tricky – particularly Christmas, a season of hope, joy, and light. While I’ve been drooling over Victoria Elizabeth Barnes’ delicious discotheque of a front porch, I haven’t the budget, time, or taste to recreate it.


By the way, folks, this photo is a test. I’m using it without permission, and when Victoria Elizabeth Barnes asks me to remove it, then I will know that she’s been reading my blog all along. If she doesn’t ask me to remove it, then I haven’t been caught get to use an awesome photo.

At any rate, I don’t have the budget or baubles to swing something like that. What I do have is the endless greenery of the Pacific Northwest, some twinkling white lights, and… various ornaments and objets d’arts that are my everyday decor. The trouble is – I don’t have the time or energy this year to bring all the wonderful ideas I have, or that I see around me, to life.  So instead of this:


We get this:


So, if you have a steel spooky cemetery set, and want to make it seasonal? CEDAR BOUGHS, Y’ALL.


Or perhaps you have a miniature Giant Octopus? That’s attacking a ship in a bottle? MORE CEDAR BOUGHS:


Perhaps you have a toy unicorn that’s prancing in a magical grotto made of bones? Can you guess how we make it festive?


It’s certainly not anything like what I thought I’d be putting up. I love it – seriously, I lovingly stacked those vertabrae to make the magical grotto, but – well, this is the kind of thing I had in my head:


Of course, we mustn’t forget the Pièce de Resistance – Veronica and Humbert Humbert, cunningly displayed as Madonna and Child:


I did make an attempt with some baubles and lights hung over my vanity, but they didn’t turn out terribly well.


All right, it isn’t my best decorating effort. It’s not incredibly Christmasy, either, and it’s certainly not Pinterest worthy. Still, the smell of cedar boughs puts me in the holiday mood. What more can I say?

To see more of the things that I would like to have done for the holiday, you can visit my Pinterest board, Holidays. To see more of what I’ve actually got around me, keep an eye on the Items for Sale page right here on the blog!

What… interesting items do you have to work around in your home, during holiday decorating? What decorations are your favorite?

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Poetic Interlude XXXVI

Angels, shepherds, jolly – jolly!
Snow, and virgins decked in holly:
Other things that end in “olly” –
Christmastime is here!

Feast on pudding, and on turkey:
Yuletide thoughts grow rather murky –
Ancient virgins – who were perky?
Christmastime is here!

Fast away the old year passes;
Relatives top off their glasses
(Eggnog turns them into asses)
Christmastime is here!

Angels, shepherds, jolly – jolly!
Snow, and virgins decked in holly:
Other things that end in “olly” –
Christmastime is here!

©2013 by Tyler J. Yoder. All rights reserved

A huge thank you to Mr. Terry Pratchett, who provided the inspiring phrase for this in one of his novels, many years ago.

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Post the Hundred-and-Thirty-Fifth: My Favorite Things

Forget the raindrops on roses, Gentle Reader – what’s festive about that? A big bucket of nothing, that’s what. No, I’m going to share a list of my favorite things about the holidays – and then, because I’m nothing if not fair, I’m going to list my least favorite holiday things. You’re welcome.

The Reverend Doctor’s Favorite Holiday Things

1. Warm Winter Toffee:
Well, all things toffee flavored. Including, years ago when flavored cigarettes were a thing, warm winter toffee smokes. Toffee flavored things are the tops, and for some reason only turn up in winter. Yum.

2. Festive Holiday Cocktails:
The holidays are a time for the cocktail-maker to really shine. By serving a signature drink at your function, you have a huge responsibility – you’re in charge of making sure that the delicate balance between family cheer and family fistfights is preserved. Also, they are usually bloody delicious. Yum!


3. Christmas Carols:
I love to sing. I love singing with friends, especially. The trouble usually is that people don’t know the same songs. What songs are known by everyone – including your non-Christian or non-celebrating friends? Christmas carols. I especially like the grand, booming, darkly old-fashioned ones. Yum?

4. Finding the Perfect Gift for Someone:
That delightful moment when you spot that absolutely fitting object, that brings someone you love to mind? And you grin madly all the way to the register, and then all the way home, where you call that person and tell them what you got them because you are horrible with secrets? That.

5. Ethical Fur:
Winter is cold, and fur is warm. Unfortunately, it’s also murder. But your grandmother’s fox fur? It’s been dead for sixty years, and it’s not your fault, and it was your old gran’s. Wear it. Or that rabbit-fur scarf your mother brought you from New Zealand, where the rabbits are an invasive species and threatening local endangered wildlife?  Wear it with pride, because you’re basically saving wildlife.

6. White Icicle Lights:
They are deleriously pretty. And yes, festive. They light the world up like tiny sugar stars, and suffuse everything with a warm glow. They are pure class.

7. Lounging Around For Hours In Your Pyjamas:
I am a huge fan of all types of dressing-gowns, robes, pyjamas, and so on. And just hours of coffee, maybe some mimosas? A lazy brunch, with all the family gathered ’round? Yes, please.


8. New Socks:
I have a thing about socks. You know how in the Great Gatsby ( the book, obviously – I haven’t seen the film) during the introductory cocktail party, there’s that drunk girl who rhapsodizes Gatsby’s shirts, and starts weeping over how beautiful they are? That’s me. Over socks. I’m still available, fellas.

9. Mauna Loa Macadamia Nuts:
When I was a kid, my great-aunt would fly out here from North Dakota. She, and my Nanny, and Maman – they’d make a big trip to Costco, which they didn’t have in the Dakotas in those days, and Auntie Helen would stock up on chocolate-covered macadamia nuts, which Costco only carried in December. They’re inextricably linked in my mind.

10. Snow:
For obvious reasons. Yum!

The Reverend Doctor’s Least Favorite Holiday Things

1. Peppermint Everything:
Okay, maybe a little peppermint’s okay here and there, but in December, it’s worse than all that pumpkin crap in the fall. No thanks.


2. Shopping in December:
I’m not a fan of crowds, and any day at any store from Thanksgiving to Christmas is just intolerable. In fact, being in public at all this time of year is gross.

3. Bell Ringers:
I like giving to those who are less fortunate than myself, but I don’t like being pressured into it. Especially by an organization that’s against the things I believe in.

4. Light-Up Inflatable Yard Characters:
I’m sorry, I just find them unbearably tacky. Unless you have one. I’m sure yours is tasteful. If you’re reading this blog, you’re clearly the epitome of elegance.

5. Scheduling/Time Management:
You have seven thousand parties, over the course of three days? And you still haven’t started shopping? Or decorating? Or baking? Or writing your cards? Or making homemade decorations to blog about? Well. I’m sure no one will judge you.

Fairly sure.

6. The Way That Everyone Hates Eggnog:
At least in my family. I end up being stuck with a half-gallon of the stuff and waaaaaay too much bourbon. And drinking your holiday cheer all alone is just sad. Which leads us to…

7. Drunk Relatives:
Come on. You know that’s going to be a thing. We miss them when they’re gone, of course, but they are going to be sooooo judgemental about your life. As difficult as they are, it’s tradition. They can also cause…


8. A General Sense of Malaise and Melancholy:
Maybe it’s the relatives. Maybe it’s Seasonal Affective Disorder. Maybe it’s overindulgence. Who knows? Who cares? When this settles in, you just have to ride it out.

9. Wrapping Presents:
It takes forever and I’m bad at it and usually I’ve already told the recipient what they’re getting. Blech.

10. Tinsel:
Enough said.

Happy Holidays, my friends!

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Post the Hundred-and-Thirty-Fourth: Holiday Parties

Gentle Reader, are you thinking of hosting a party for one of the many winter holidays that are now upon us? What a wonderful idea! This time of year is so festive, we wind up “pissing brandy and crapping plum pudding,” as my old grandad used to say after too many eggnogs on Christmas Eve. Scatological anecdotes aside, we all love parties, and we love the holidays – but entertaining can be overwhelming. Luckily, I spent many years as Co-Chairman of the Fabulous Party Association, and I’d like to share some tips and tricks we learned throwing the annual Formal Holiday Historical Costume Ball.

Step 1: Be Sure to Start Planning Months in Adavance
Wait – do you mean to tell me you didn’t start already? All that nonsense about Christmas in July – that’s fine, if you like to leave things until the last minute. Starting in June allows you to hand-select a guest list, arrange the venue and theme, save for the copious amounts of food and drink you’ll need, and give you time to build custom decor, like a folding screen of festive greenery. Give yourself time.


Step 2: Select a Theme and Stick to It
Ostensibly, sure, your theme is “The Holidays” – but isn’t that awfully vague? What if someone comes dressed as Canada Day? That would be disastrous. People enjoy dressing up, and while you’ll never be able to entirely eliminate the jeans-and-t-shirt contingent, by enforcing a policy of costumes, or fancy attire, you’ll really set your event apart. Plus, people are more likely to remember “that Edward Gorey themed party” than “one of the fifty parties I went to over Break” – even if they’ve been copiously drinking.


Step 3: Carefully Choose Your Entertainments
It’s important to know your guests, and what sort of things they enjoy. At the FPA, for years, we’d try different parlor games, usually picked to match the theme. We made sure to keep track of how they were received.


If you don’t have any standard party games of your own, feel free to ask in the comments.

One of our most successful games was our festive winter murder mystery. Select guests were given roles and scripts –


– and throughout the night would re-enact certain scenes, giving away clues to the rest, who were left to piece the mystery together. Despite some misunderstandings, there had not been a real murder.

Step 4: Make Sure Those Entertainments Include Fabulous Prizes
If you’re making people dress up, shouldn’t you give them a little incentive? Costume contests are great for that. People love to outdo each other. You may find a stage handy at this point.


Step 5: You Really Ought To Have Room For Dancing, Too


And room for not dancing, as well. For every two guests who are rabid for the next surprise thrill you’re about to unveil, you’ll have one who wants to sit, and indulge in pleasant chat or vicious gossip. It’s wise to have a spot where those more low-key individuals can rest.


If a conga-line spontaneously breaks out after the period-dance-lesson is over, you’ll know that both types of guests will be just fine.


Step 5: Capitalize on People’s Vanity
We can all agree that people love seeing pictures of themselves, right? Set up a thematically-appropriate photo op they won’t find elsewhere and take everyone’s portrait. Tell your victims prey guests that while all pictures will be available online, that they can receive an 8×10 print for a suitable donation. If necessary, use guilt. They’ll buy.


Step 6: Some People Suck
Sweetie – can I call you Sweetie, Gentle Reader? – Sweetie, I have a secret. Despite all your hard work, despite your careful planning, despite all the money you’ve sunk into a single night to show your friends and family a good time – despite all this, Sweetie, some people are going to be like this:


And you know what the secret is, Sweetie? That’s okay. You can’t worry about it – you’ve done your best to make everyone happy for one festive night, and while you can be a good host by offering to freshen their drink or help them to another canapé – you still have a huge number of guests who are having a good time. You can’t worry about people like this.


It’s not that you don’t care, it’s just that, as host, you’re far too busy organizing every damned thing to ensure that every other damned person does enjoy their damned night.

No matter what you’re celebrating, Gentle Reader, I hope you have a festive party or two to attend.

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Post the Hundred-and-Thirty-Third: Quitting Smoking

It seems, Gentle Reader, that Music Monday was a bit of a bust. I thought it might be, but that’s never stopped me from trying new things. Unless you all start clamoring for more terrible ukulele videos, we’re going back to ordinary posts on Mondays.

Except that I have nothing prepared for today, and not even a glimmer of an idea of what to share with you. Why is that? I mean, I’ve pulled the last-minute routine successfully from time to time – why should today be any different?

Because I’m quitting fucking smoking and I want to punch everything until there’s no more punches to give.

Today is day two of the attempt. It wasn’t my idea, naturally. Maman is convinced that if she hasn’t quit smoking by the time she has her hip surgery, then she’ll die on the table. She’s convinced that it’s going to kill her for a variety of reasons, most of which can be boiled down to the fact that she’s the same age that my dad was when he died, and that therefore it’s destiny.

Angry Ghost

I’m quitting in solidarity, even though I think she’s being silly, and also because I certainly won’t be able to afford it while I’m tromping around Europe. I plan to switch to one of those vapor things, that look like sonic screwdrivers and give one enough nicotine to keep one from scratching one’s own eyes out, but I haven’t had a chance yet. They’re a little expensive to set up.

While I would like to have a longer post about some charming jaunt or other, I’m going to go dropkick a bear or something to release some of this aggression. Cheers, kittens.

UPDATE: I am no longer on the verge of tearing out someone’s trachea with my teeth, Gentle Reader, because I got a vaporizer this afternoon. Via a magical process that I don’t understand, it delivers nicotine in a fog of water vapor and candy-flavored syrup, and has calmed me the fuck down. I haven’t wanted a cigarette since I got it. Yo.

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Poetic Interlude XXXV

A hundred battles won and lost; a thousand ventures planned –
Intricate and numerous as beaches full of sand,
And all for you, my lonely one, at whim of your command,
For I shall take your heart, and I shall earn your hand.

To soothe your tears and earn your trust, I’d humble any land;
Alchemically transform myself, should that be your demand.
At altar, at your foot I’d sit, and vivisect my clan,
If that would gain your heart, or guarantee your hand.

Though every time you glance at me, my chances may be damned;
Though circumstances intervene, and circumvent my plan –
Though I’ve been chasing after you, since I became a man,
One day I’ll win your heart; one day you’ll grant my hand.

©2013 by Tyler J. Yoder. All rights reserved

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