Laurie Notaro is an author, crafter, and expert at finding a good cocktail. She grew up in Phoenix, but is currently based in Eugene, Oregon. Each week, she's been joining us to share a crafting adventure, draw a flowchart, or remember a few of her favorite things about Phoenix. This week, we're featuring a few of our favorite columns by Laurie Notaro:
Toss the Book You Have in Your Purse and Read These Instead I was recently privy to some first hand information about a woman who was seemingly happily married to a nice fellow until she read "Fifty Shades of Grey." She became so engrossed in the story that when she finished the book, she promptly asked for a divorce and was determined to buy some fancy panties at JC Penneys and then find a young, sadomasochistic gazillionaire of her own.
I choked on a home fry when I heard this, and turned around to see the woman in question, a plump, rosy-cheeked woman with long, stringy hair and bangs wearing a stretched out-sweater woven with clumps of cat hair.
While I am not a fan of this "adult" genre, I am always happy when people are reading a book, although I do wish it wasn't simply the script of a bad porn movie set to somewhat complete sentences. Read more ...
Five Reasons Why Haboobs Are Awesome
5. In less than 30 seconds, a respectable Haboob can fill the artificial cleavage of every Scottsdale housewife racing from Lucy to the safety of her Land Rover in the parking lot at Kierland. Bejeweled flip flops aren't natural disaster-friendly footwear, and some may actually topple over due to their tank tops becoming filled like the sands in an hour glass. It may take days to months to find survivors, or sadly, (kinda not, I'm just being nice) only squishy silicone pillows behind the Cheesecake Factory in huddled piles surrounded by plastic diamonds and patches of glitter. Read more ...
The Six Creepiest Things Laurie Notaro Saw on Facebook Last Week
If the Internet is the seventh circle of hell as I believe it to be, then Facebook is without question its reigning five-star general. There's no doubt that the social network swamp is the first in the goosestep, leading its troops into a swirling bottomless pit of cringes, things that cannot be unseen, and peeks at humanity that result in a creep factor worthy of Hieronymus Bosch.
We've all had our share reading of gasp-eliciting status updates from People You Thought Knew Better, but when it comes to setting the lowest common denominator, leave it to Facebook to repeatedly drop the bar. Again. And again. And again. It's rapidly becoming my "go-to" spot when my hope for mankind (seeing people wash their hands after going to the bathroom, that Wal-Mart hasn't run Target out of business yet, or when a stranger lets me pet their puppy) does anything but flat line and I haven't felt raw despair for roughly 30 seconds. Read more ...
Six Things Laurie Notaro Never Wants to Hear While Standing in Line at the Pharmacy (Again)
There are certain places in a grocery store that are far more dangerous than others, and for the innocent, I'm not talking about the ice cream aisle. I'm talking about the partitioned part where the Vicodin lives.
True, if prehistoric birds attacked the store or if there were a hostage situation, I'd always pick Pill Land over the candy lane as a place to hole up, but in everyday, regular circumstances, it's a terrifying, naked place. This leads me to admit that I'm there constantly because I cannot get my inhaler, high blood pressure pills and my Ambien dolls coordinated at the same pick up, and as a result, I know everyone there on a first name basis. Read more ...
Laurie Notaro on Recipe Theft, Cheap Toilet Paper, and Not Being Invited to a Close Friend's Party on Facebook
I wasn't on the invitation list.
I checked twice, three times. I was sure that I was just so used to seeing me that I had skipped it out of habit. The list was long, full of faces that I knew. A long line of faces that had eaten party food at my house and had pulled a beer I had paid for out of a cooler on my back porch.
And on this long list of Facebook invitees for a birthday of someone I considered a very good friend, mine wasn't one of them. Read more ... Read more ...
Laurie Notaro Writes a Handy Manual for Her Husband ... In Case She Dies Before He Does
After a close call with the Big Sleep yesterday, my thoughts went not exactly to my own life, but to that of my husband's. What would happen to him if I died?
Yes, there would be a short period of mourning followed by a longer one of jubilation and buoyant celebration of freedom, but what exactly does that freedom mean? It means that on any given day, my husband stands on the brink of expiration numerous times a day and would no doubt succumb without the proper supervision.
Therefore, with the help of several of my long-time married girlfriends, I have created A Handy Manual for a Widower, My Husband. I wrote my intro with some personal touches, but feel free to pen your own, filled with your individual inspirations. Read more ...
Laurie Notaro's Existential Showdown on Yelp
All I really wanted to do was order a pizza.
That's all I wanted to do.
I didn't want to get into a sparring match with anonymous Internet assholes, I didn't want to argue about libel laws and I certainly didn't want to enter a debate concerning my entire existence.
Then again, that's what happens when you enter the arena of Roman-inspired public games called Yelp, and before you know it people who only venture outside to go someplace and then come right back to review it are calling for your head on a flagpole. Read more ...
DIY Glass Etching: A Semi-Dangerous How-To with Laurie Notaro
Would you like to see my etchings?
My mother used to buy liter glass bottles of Coke every week when I was in grade school. She knew when to buy more mayonnaise when the butter knife clinked along the inside of the glass jar, sounding a little like a wind chime.
We kept leftovers in Pyrex containers when I was little, and if you dropped a bottle of ketchup on your foot, you knew you could say goodbye to a toenail or two for a couple of months. I like the fact that I won't bleed out if I drop a bottle of orange juice anywhere near my neck, but at the same time, my compulsion to hang onto objects I feel are fleeting has turned my basement into something of a glass catacomb. Read more ...
Six Words Laurie Notaro Demands People Stop Using Right Now
I understand that language evolves; it adapts to the temperature of the culture and times, and it's a constantly changing entity. But below are six terms that have entered our spoken word like a chigger under the skin of society that refuses to budge.
Now I know if I am patient and wait, they will eventually lose their shine and fade back into obscurity like "gnarly," "rad," and "grody," but what if they don't? What if they are granted permanent residence as in "I was like, ..." or "totally"? See this as a warning call that if we don't do something about these phrases now, they may never leave, like genital herpes and Ryan Seacrest. That's how serious this is!!! Read more ...
Why Laurie Notaro's Mother is Threatening Not to Speak with Her
"That's it!" my mother snapped from the other end of the phone. "I'm not talking to you anymore. From now on, we are not talking!"
This was hardly the response I expected after giving my mother a compliment. I was stunned. No, I take that back. I was not stunned, but I guess I didn't expect that strong of a reaction.
"Did you hear what I said?" I reiterated, positive--no, I take that back--hopeful that she had heard me wrong when I told my mother that when I got notes back on a project I was writing, the first thing on the agenda was "More of your mother. Love her."
"I heard what you said, and that's why I'm not talking to you anymore," she explained, her voice rising. "If I don't talk to you anymore, then you can't write about me anymore."
"That is ridiculous," I stammered. "Who doesn't want to be everyone's favorite part?"
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to Phoenix New Times's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Phoenix's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
"ME!" she shot back. "Why don't you write about your in-laws? They're funny."
"Are you kidding?" I asked. "That lineage is off limits! Most of them have guns and I have to eat Christmas dinner with those people!"
"In that case, I'm buying the next gun I see on QVC," my mother informed me. "Even if it's not a Joan Rivers brand." Read more ...