Friday, October 2, 2015

Ban Illiteracy

Hello everyone, I hope your weeks have been more fantastic than the thought of a wombat version of the X-Men!

Well, in case you missed this tidbit of news in the world of books, this week is Banned Book Week!

This is a magical time of year when authors, readers, librarians and bibliophiles get together to promote a world free from book censorship. In honor of that I have collected a few of my favorite banned books for your perusal.

 Hop on Pop - Dr. Seuss

That's right, Dr. Seuss was banned.

The violent images of violence perpetuated by children against their long-suffering father prompted quite a few complaints up in Canada forcing several libraries to pull the book from their shelves.

Of course, we all know Dr. Seuss, that warped man, was really just promoting patricide, not literacy.

The Lord of the Rings - J.R.R. Tolkien

Technically The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit and the Silmarillion have all been banned at one time or another. Though, if anyone who recommended the Silmarillion be banned had actually read it I would eat my nonexistent hat.

All three of these were banned because they possessed an obvious connection to Satanism.  After all, who hasn't actually opened a portal to the underworld just by reading about Hobbits? Oh, did that just happen to me? Okay then.

Where the Sidewalk Ends - Shel Silverstein

Yep, your favorite childhood poet was secretly poisoning your mind.

How? Well, obviously the book promoted cannibalism, naughty behavior by children and mass plate breaking.

No, seriously, there was a group that freaked out because this book displayed children breaking multiple plates instead of washing them, which obviously was encouraging child-based anarchy.

Harriet the Spy - Louise Fitzhugh

This spunky little girl was actually an insidious, clandestine plan to encourage children to spy!

Well, I guess it is in the title, so you know, it wasn't very secret...

As an author and bibliophile, I strongly encourage everyone to go out, find a "Banned Book" and read it! That's right, do something dangerous, buck the censorship system and read!

Let me know what your favorite banned book is in the comments below! 

As always you can find me in Facebook and Twitter (@AllisonHawn) and find my books here!

Friday, September 18, 2015

The Fat, Skinny, Strong, Curvy... Truth

Hello all! I hope you are all having weeks that are more fabulous than the thought of a reenactment of Pride and Prejudice performed by snakes in top hats.

Well, it's fair to say that graduate school is not for the faint of heart. I am about a month and a half in and about ready to start gnawing on the corners of books.

Yes, I'm aware that just makes me sound like I'm turning into one of my cats, which you all probably feared already, but I swear there are no kitty transformations occurring.

This week I was walking through the parking lot to my car after buying groceries. Okay, honest confession, I was doing the "lug all of your groceries on your arms without hitting your legs with them because you're too proud to use the shopping cart" waddle, but that is neither here nor there.

 As I toiled under the unforgiving Arizona sun towards my car I happened to read a bumper sticker in the back of a Toyota that read, "Fit is Beautiful"  and advertised some local gym.

The car parked directly next to it had a hot pink bumper sticker that read, "Big girls are the sexiest!"

I would have taken a picture, but that would have required untangling myself from several grocery bags and then re-hefting them in the 109 degree heat.

Instead as I trudged back to my car a thought hit me, "Why did I move to a place where the pavement could actually melt my shoes!?"

After that thought came, "I wonder to whose advantage it is to have a body type beauty war?"

Sure, the media benefit when they cast skinny models as the "hot girls" in one film and then have "feel good" films where the heavier girl gets her man. Makeup companies make a killing off of making women compare with each other. Gyms exploit the comparison for memberships...

The long list of those who benefit from women comparing themselves to each other is mind boggling long.

You know who doesn't benefit, though? WOMEN

We as a sex and a gender don't benefit, not one little bumper sticker's worth of an iota, from constantly having to claim that our particular body type is somehow more "beautiful" or more "sexy" than the next girl's body type!

 The comparison of "who is more beautiful" based simply on our skin-sack full of organs, bones and other random tissues and juices (which is essentially what we all are) is a false one, and it's one that we continue to perpetuate to our own disadvantage.

So, are skinny women beautiful? YES

Are curvy women beautiful? YES

Are tall women beautiful? YES

What about <insert random descriptor here>? YES

All women are beautiful, and until we stop competing with each other for the imaginary body-type, beauty queen crown, then we will continue to waste our time and our energy dividing over something useless instead of directing our time and effort towards something actually productive.

You are beautiful, whether you are tall, short, thin, fat, purple (though, if you're purple, you might want to get that checked), trans, straight haired, or built like She-Hulk!

Now it's time, as women, that we all start acting like the beautiful bitches we are.

If you want to know where you can find more of this beautiful woman, come find me on Facebook and Twitter and my books can be found here!

Saturday, September 5, 2015

DMV - Demotivating Mandatory Victimization

Hello all, I hope you have all had weeks that were more fantastic than the thought of steampunk rap (which actually exists).

I'm sorry this post is late! Grad student life has me in its clutches and doesn't want to let go! Despite being buried in countless pages of reading and long papers, I do have this little adventure for all of you.

I have officially decided that the DMV is where dreams go to be crushed like a Hotwheels car under the foot of the Terminator. Florescent lights, long lines, chairs of questionable origin, the DMV is what I imagine dying and getting stuck in Limbo is probably like.

One thing that I've noticed is that every DMV in every county and every state has one thing in common; they all have at least one person waiting with you that will make you contemplate whether you actually need to drive or not. 

In varying DMV lines I've faced the man of incredible flatulence, the woman who brought not one, not two, but three yapping dogs and the guy who kept going outside to make sure his car hadn't caught fire, "I fixed it, but I ain't sure I fixed it right..."

The individual who takes the DMV gold straightjacket, though, graced those waiting with her presence at my most recent visit. The waiting room was crowded that day, twenty to thirty people were crammed in the narrow waiting area like that box of Crayola crayons that Jimmy decided to try and get one extra crayon into. Stupid Jimmy.

I had been sitting on a bench next to another lady who shared my "does not want to be here" expression for about three minutes when she walked in. Well, technically she more pushed her way through the door ramming into an elderly gentleman who was about to take a number so she could grab a number first.

With bits of her oozing from underneath a shirt that was a size or four too small, she wandered up to the bench. Guessing that she wanted to take a seat, I began to scoot over as did the girl next to me in the opposite direction. I only had a chance to scooch myself about a centimeter though before the woman said, "Well, it would be NICE if someone were willing to move over for me instead of just sitting there like dumb cows!"

The other girl and I looked at each other, I rolled my eyes and we continued our journey to make room for our vulgar new bench mate. When we had scooted far enough for her largess, which meant I was nearly sitting in the next person's lap, she thudded herself down and said, "SeeEee? That wasn't so hard now was it?"

Everyone on the long bench looked at her with a similar expression of confusion and disgust as she then scratched her armpit, very close to the other girl's face, and burped.

At this point I went back to counting how many dots were in the ceiling tiles and waiting for my number to be called. The woman next to me let out a series of exasperated sighs and kept saying things like, "I don't understand why this is taking so long!" as if she expected anyone to answer her.

After a couple of minutes, she suddenly started digging around in her purse, a monstrous Nascar Racing decorated affair with a giant Confederate flag pin on it. After elbowing me several times in her frantic search for whatever she was hunting for, she let out a triumphant little grunt and pulled out a toothbrush and toothpaste.

I then watched in horror as she put the toothpaste on the toothbrush, and with great angsty energy, shoved the toothbrush in her mouth. Now she hadn't just caught the attention of the others clustered on the bench, but a majority of those trapped in the lobby as well as the DMV employees. Everyone sat in abject horror for a second as she brushed and slurped her way along, obviously swallowing the toothpaste as she went.

After a few shocked seconds I decided that I did not want my front row seat to the 'Dental Hygiene Show' and got up to go lean against a wall as far away as possible. As I made my retreat the woman gurgled out, "Whore!" behind me.

Funny, she was number 47, but it seems while I was filling out my paperwork, the DMV counter attendants somehow managed to go from 46 directly on to 48. Whoopsie-doodle!

So what lessons from this can be printed on our experience registrations?

1. Peoples' definitions of the word "whore" seem to be vastly different. I always thought it was a derogatory term for someone who likes to sleep with a lot of people. Apparently I'm wrong, it is a term for someone who doesn't wish to be a up-close-and-personal participant in someone else's dental care.

2. You can in fact be so awful that not even DMV employees will want to talk to you. 

For more fun adventures don't forget to check out my stuff on Facebook and Twitter (@AllisonHawn) and check out my books here!

Friday, August 21, 2015

Driving Under the Influence

Hello all! I hope your weeks have been more fantastic than the thought of Swan Lake performed by tu-tu clad mice!

 Well, they weren't kidding about the heat in Arizona. We had two consecutive days that were 115 degrees and I swear I could have grilled chicken on the pavement in front of our building.

They also were not joking about the dust storms. They have haboobs (it's another name for 'really intense dust storm, no really, go look it up and stop laughing) here too. I accidentally stepped outside during the most recent one and am still finding dust on me.

Overall, however, I seem to be surviving the heat and the weird weather.

When I moved away from Spokane people said to me, "Oh, now weird stuff will stop happening to you all the time."

I just shook my head, knowingly, at them. You see, my gravitational field that seems to pull in all of the bizarre parts of the universe is not restricted to a singular location. No, instead it follows me, orbiting the crazy around my head.

Point in case, let's take my trip to the grocery store the other night as proof. My roommate, Karen, and I dropped by to pick up a few necessities (aka ice cream). As we were leaving the store we noticed a rather large gentleman on one of those motorized scooters cutting a swerving path across the parking lot.

 As we watched, he steered one-handed, nearly hitting two parked cars. At least he was nice enough to apologize to each of the cars he nearly hit. I happened to look at what he was holding in his other hand. With just a little bit of the neck of a bottle poking out, it was obvious that the paper bag he gripped tightly in his hand was not full of candy.

I looked over at Karen, "Is he..." just as he took a giant swig from his cleverly hidden bottle.


We both then watched as he tried to steer the cart into the cart barn, running smack into one of the end poles.

"Well, at least he's not driving a Hummer?"

What lessons can be drunk from the bottle of experience?

1. If you're too plastered to steer a motorized shopping cart, then a motor vehicle is not for you. Good job on your harm reduction, though.

2. Paper bags are the least sneaky way to hide booze, in fact, they are literally the most cliched way ever to disguise drinking. You're not going to fool anyone who has had access to television in the last fifty years.

As always come follow my adventures on Facebook and Twitter (@AllisonHawn) and check out my books here.

Saturday, August 8, 2015

The Eagle Has Landed, I Repeat The Eagle Has Landed

Hello everyone! I hope your weeks were more fabulous than the thought of Star Wars' Princess Leia as a "Disney Princess." (It's a thought that makes me chuckle every time.)

Well, I did it! After 1,400 miles, 26 hours on the road and an unfathomable amount of terrible gas station coffee, I made it to Arizona!

Of course, I was the genius who decided that the day after I competed all day in the Spokane Highland Games should be the day I pack all of my stuff into the back of a rental truck and move. So one day after doing this:

And this:

I was loading everything I own on this planet (shout out to the folks who came and helped) into the back of a truck and setting off for Arizona. To answer your question, no my muscles have still not forgiven me.

My View for 99% of the Trip

Then there came the three-day journey to my new home in Glendale, Arizona. My mother and grandmother were in charge of the moving van, I was in charge of the car containing the cats.

For those of you who have never had the pleasure of trying to drive with two cats in the car, let me tell you, if you want the true horror movie experience without the chainsaws or ghosts then nothing will get you closer.

Not an Accurate Representation of This Trip
I had made a small area in the back of my car with the kitties' litter box, some towels for them to lay on and attached them to little harnesses and leashes so that they couldn't come to the front where I was driving... or so I thought.

What immediately happened was Santeria, who is agoraphobic beyond even Detective Monk levels, curled up in her litter box and screamed for two hours straight. She then moved to the comfort of her kitty crate, which was also in the back, and continued to scream from there.
Now when I say "screaming," I literally mean screaming. It sounded like I was murdering a woman in a Hitchcock-esque fashion as I was driving.

The few times she left the litter box or the crate to explore the car she would peer out the windows for just as long as it took for me to find the slightest curve or bump in the road and then she would skitter back to safety and start screaming again.

Voodoo, as it turns out, I named incorrectly. I should have named her Houdini as she figured out multiple ways to escape her little kitty harness and the leash. I would be driving along and suddenly Voodoo would be underneath my seat playing with my ankles or attempting to climb on the dashboard.

Adorable but Untrustworthy
Finally, after getting her back in her harness for the 27th time, Voodoo settled for creeping over my shoulder for a majority of the trip. It was from this position that she spent the rest of the drive hissing at anything that she deemed inappropriate and sometimes smacking me in the face because whatever it was was obviously my fault.

So basically my trip down to Phoenix wrangling cats could probably have been used as training for special operatives who are about to be sent in the field to disarm landmines. They would have nerves of steel after three days trapped in a car with the constant screaming, random bats to the head and ankles and playing the "where did that cat get to now!?" game while driving 70 miles an hour.

Well I'm here, I'm exhausted but I'm alive and excited to see what adventures Arizona will bring!

As always, I can be found on Facebook and Twitter (@AllisonHawn) and my books can be found here!

Friday, July 24, 2015


Hello everyone! I hope your weeks have been more fantastic than the thought of a thousand free-range lemmings synchronized diving to Queen's Don't Stop Me Now!

Sadly, that could accurately describe my life right now, which is why this post is so late. My bad. But maybe you'll cut me a little slack. You see in the past two weeks I have accepted a position at a graduate school in Arizona, sold my truck, bought a car, quit my job, had to find a new place to live, begun the packing process and basically am about three seconds away from going utterly and completely insane.

The picture to the right is what my apartment currently looks like.

Yes indeed, that mass of boxes and a nearly buried bookcase basically sums up my earthly possessions. At this point I am truly sad that there is no incredible transporter room like on the Enterprise that can beam my belongings directly to Arizona. Nerd sigh.

I promise that when I move and get settled in, I will begin posting again with more regularity. I also swear I will get back to posting on Case (Un)Managed, but with life currently in it's unmanageable state, I'm afraid I have had to temporarily let that one sit for a second as well.

So the next time I post, if everything goes according to plan, I will be posting from Arizona. Of course for that to happen I need to get everything I own into the back of a truck and then somehow convince my two agoraphobic cats that spending a couple days cooped up in a vehicle listening to me belt 80's music isn't so bad.

Wish me luck.

In other news, Free the Shorts! has had a successful run so far! As I write this post it is sitting at #1 on Amazon Kindle's Humor and Entertainment Essays list! Here are what the reader reviews are saying thus far:

"'s worth a Five-Star rating, hands down."

"It's hard to be grumpy or continue to have a bad day if you read anything Allison writes- she is an absolute laugh riot"

"Hahahahaha. So good I went right out and bought the next book."

"Hilarious! I loved the HULK SMASH chapter and the part about the raccoon. Allison Hawn is very funny." 

Thank you to everyone who has read a copy so far! If you haven't yet, go grab your free copy and give it a read! If you enjoy it, post a review! 

As always I can be found on Facebook and Twitter and my books can be found here!

Friday, July 3, 2015

Free the Shorts!

Hello all! I hope your weeks have been more fantastic than the thought of the Chipmunks singing "The Lion Sleeps Tonight!"

Well it is out! Free the Shorts! is, as the title would imply, free on Amazon and Barnes & Noble!

This collection includes six stories, four brand new stories and two from my previous two books. It's a great deal considering the only thing it's going to cost you is a few KB's of memory on your phone, computer, e-reader! Heck, it would even fit on a floppy disk!

So go snatch up your copy! If you enjoy it, do a poor author a favor and leave a review!

In other news Life is a Circus Run by a Platypus received yet another five star review! Reader Sarodnap writes, "Lovely read."

To see what's so lovely about it check it out here!

As always, I am fairly easily found on Facebook and Twitter (@AllisonHawn)! Come say hello!