Marcia Barhydt


Weird Wichita Winners

Sometimes you just have to wonder what people are thinking, don’t you? Sometimes people do the nuttiest things and you just have to shake your head in amazement. What were they thinking?

There are two brothers in Wichita, Kansas, who recently won $75,000 in a lottery. They decided to celebrate by amassing what was probably a pretty big amount of marijuana and perhaps other celebratory substances.

According to the Wichita Eagle via Huffington Post, they ran into trouble when:

One of the brothers went to the kitchen to refuel the butane torches they planned to use to light their bongs. He emptied a couple of large cans of butane lighter fluid, leaking butane into the air. “The butane vapour reached the pilot light in the furnace, and as you might expect, ka-boom,” Wichita Police Sgt. Bruce Watts said at a press conference.

This bright bulb brother suffered second degree burns to his hands and face. Luckily for him, his girlfriend was able to drive him to the hospital. It’s not known how long they’d been dating, but she just dropped him off at the door and sped away. She hasn’t been seen since, which makes her somewhat smarter than her ex-boyfriend.

The other brother was arrested on drug charges after telling police he had meth and marijuana in the home. I wonder if they were twins or were just blessed with the same sized brains.

Watch this video to hear all the juicy details of this bizarre escapade.

Please don’t think I’m faulting these two sad brothers for celebrating. If I’d won $75,000 I’d be celebrating too. But I’m pretty sure I’d know to keep flammable gasses pretty far away from an open flame or pilot light. Good thing they didn’t have a gas stove with four gas pilot lights. That would have been a quadruple ka-boom.

Have you ever filled a lighter with lighter fluid? The smell of the gasses is unmistakable and it’s very strong. You can’t miss it. Unless you had a really stuffed up nose, you’d have to realize what was going on here and to me, it’s just a short step to realizing that those gases could go anywhere in the air.

For example, you would never fill your lighter right next to a burning cigarette in an ashtray, right? So wouldn’t you also realize that the gases might reach the flame on your furnace located nearby too? I’m no fire fighter, but that’s pretty basic knowledge I think. But it seems I’m mistaken, at least about these two brain-challenged brothers.

I wish I had a conclusion to this story to share with you, but since this stunt only happened a few days ago, there’s no word of if the brothers have learned their lesson. Nor is there any word about what happened to all of their celebratory substance or how much, if any, money they had left of their $75,000 winnings.

I hope they had enough left to get in a big stock of alcohol. It’s way safer.


©2013 Marcia Barhydt

Bic pens for women

There’s finally a pen designed for women. I came across a video of a segment on the Ellen DeGeneres show and as always, with her wide-eyed innocence, she really put this bizarre product in its place.

Come on, a pen for women? Because we have more delicate, tinier hands than guys? Because we’re not able to wrap a couple of fingers around a great big guy-pen? Maybe it’s so that the good people at Bic can make pink, girlie-girl pens. Nope, that’s already been done. Although at this moment, as I look at the pens in my pen cup on my desk, I see no pink ones. I’ll have to go to the Bic store and pick up half a dozen so I never run out.

Seriously, what kind of baloney is this eye rolling marketing scheme? Are there really still guys on Madison Avenue who think this kind of marketing will appeal to any of us? I understand that there are still lots of products designed for women and lots more designed for men. I’m not looking for all of us to be identical here. But when it comes down to a product that’s so unisex, I’m appalled. And so, apparently, is Ellen. Have a look at her video here.

I wish I could bring some company to their knees and make it a joke at the same time just like Ellen does. There’s no greater put down than having people laugh at you, or at your pink pen.

I’m not alone with my shock over this foolish marketing. Shoppers have taken to the reviews section of Amazon to write hundreds of snarky, and often sarcastic, “reviews” of the pens.

“Finally! For years I’ve had to rely on pencils, or at worst, a twig and some drops of my feminine blood to write down recipes (the only thing a lady should be writing ever),” the reviewer wrote. “I had despaired of ever being able to write down said recipes in a permanent manner, though my men-folk assured me that I ‘shouldn’t worry yer pretty little head’. But Bic, the great liberator, has released a womanly pen that my gentle baby hands can use without fear of unlady-like calluses and bruises. Thank you, Bic!”

“My drawings of kittens and ponies have improved, and now that I’m writing my last name hyphenated with the Robert Pattinson’s last name, I really believe he may someday marry me. I’m positively giddy. Those smart men in marketing have come up with a pen that my lady parts can really identify with.”

Reviewer Dan Kaufman wrote, “Men, don’t stand for this. Aren’t there enough products specific to women already? First it was tampons, now these pens? What other products will I have to suffer the indignity of being unable to purchase just because I’m a male person?”

Come on, Bic. Hire someone with half a brain for your new products department. Find someone who’s not a total sexist, someone who actually has contact with women in today’s world.


©Marcia Barhydt, 2013