“Toto, I have a feeling
we’re not in Kansas anymore.”
“Here’s looking at you,
“You’re gonna need a
“I love the smell of
napalm in the morning.”
These famous and familiar
film quotes originated from films made in 1939, 1942, 1975 and 1979. Topics run
the gamut from a magical land to pre-World War II heartache, from man-eating
sharks to the Vietnam War’s effect on the psyche. Yet, no matter how different they
are, they all have something in common: They each have one line that is
synonymous with the film it originated from. These quotes have stood the test
of time – some as long as 74 years. Think about it: One sentence from a film
that is recognized in context 74 years later within pop culture? That’s
Film quotes have become a
part of our everyday lingo. Here at Balcom, we love our film quotes. If someone
is leaving the office for a meeting, they’ll probably say, “I’ll be back” in their
best Arnold Schwarzenegger voice. If a client is five months behind on paying
an invoice, you’ll usually hear our accounting manager, Toni, shouting, “Show
me the money!” from her desk. You get the point – most people inject film quotes,
whether inadvertently or not, into their daily conversations.
But what makes a specific film
quote resonate with an individual? We asked the Bs to pick their
favorite film quote of all time, and after a lot of arguing back and forth about
the impossibility of picking just ONE, we were able to compile a list.
Find out which quotes
speak to the Bs, and please share your favorite film quote with us in the
“Anything different is
– Phil Connors, “Groundhog
Rob: “Life is about change,
moving forward, and growing on a personal, intellectual, and spiritual level.”
“So it's not gonna be easy.
It's going to be really hard; and we're gonna have to work at this every day,
but I want to do that because I want you. I want all of you, forever. You and
me ... every day.”
– Noah Calhoun, “The
Audrey: “I’m a sucker for
love stories. It gives me butterflies every time I hear it. And, it’s true –
love takes work.”
all, tomorrow is another day."
– Scarlett O'Hara, “Gone With
the Wind” (1939)
Lynne: “As someone who lives and dies by the
deadline, it's good to have some perspective.”
“Worrying is like a
rocking chair. It gives you something to do, but it doesn't get you anywhere.”
– Van Wilder, “Van Wilder”
Jennifer: “As someone who
notoriously worries, this quote reminds me that sometimes you just have to let
things go. Some things are out of our hands. Write that down.”
“You know, I have a friend
who works at the crime lab at the police station. I could give him your
toothbrush and he could run a test on it ... to see if you actually brushed
your teeth ... or just ran your toothbrush under the faucet."
– Buck Russell, "Uncle
Lesley: “It clearly
demonstrates how awesome it would be to have John Candy as your uncle!”
“Heed! Paper! Now! Move that
melon of yours and get the paper, if you can. Hauling that gargantuan cranium
about. I’m not kidding that boy’s head’s like Sputnik. Spherical, but quite
pointy in parts. Well that was offside wasn’t it? He’ll be crying himself to sleep
tonight on his huge pillow.”
– Stuart Mackenzie, “So I
Married an Axe Murderer” (1993)
Holly: “It's just one of
those stupid-funny movies with memorable lines that still rattle around in my
man tells his stories so many times that he becomes the stories. They live
on after him, and in that way he becomes immortal.”
– Will Bloom, “Big Fish”
Chip: “I've never let the
truth get in the way of a good story. For me, the facts are a lot less
important than the feeling. That's what people want in life – they want a good
“Well, I believe in the
soul, the small of a woman's back, the hanging curve ball, high fiber, good
scotch, that the novels of Susan Sontag are self-indulgent, overrated crap. I
believe Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone. I believe there ought to be a
constitutional amendment outlawing Astroturf and the designated hitter. I believe
in opening your presents Christmas morning rather than Christmas Eve and I
believe in long, slow, deep, soft, wet kisses that last three days. Goodnight.”
– Crash Davis, “Bull Durham”
Toni: “I agree with most of
the ideologies in this quote, especially the part about opening your presents
on Christmas morning! 'Bull Durham' is one of the greatest baseball movies ever
made, and this quote is a great philosophy to live by.”
ain't dumb. Some of 'em got smarts real good, like me.”
– Bud Davis, “Urban Cowboy”
Spencer: “This movie is
greatly under-appreciated! It has witty dialogue & an excellent
"Sewer rat may taste
like pumpkin pie, but I'd never know 'cause
I wouldn’t eat the filthy mother*****!"
– Jules Winnfield, “Pulp
Trey: “Pulp Fiction is one
of the greatest movies of my generation. It revolutionized the way stories are
told in film through the use of metaphors and by doing what we expect in an
unexpected way. The entire film is actually an allegory of the American music
scene, specifically rock & roll. Jules (the character) is one of the most
badass characters in the movie. In this particular scene, he and Vincent are
discussing animal consumption – which animals are or aren't edible based on
taste vs. charm. It’s a brilliant conversation and this quote is one of the
most memorable of the entire discussion, not to mention funny as hell.”
Sherriff Jeff Lord: “Any
trouble here, Mr. McLintock?”
George Washington McLintock:
“No trouble, Sheriff.”
Sherriff Jeff Lord: “How
about you, Douglas.”
Matt Douglas: “Douglas. Just
plain Douglas, eh. And you call him Mr. McLintock. Why?”
Sherriff Jeff Lord: “Well,
Douglas, I guess that's because he's earned it.”
– “McLintock” (1963)
Ali: “The BEST movie of all
time. So many good quotes, but I like the underlying theme of earning respect –
something a lot of the world (young and old) forgets these days.”
“Life moves pretty fast. If
you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”
– Ferris Bueller, “Ferris
Bueller’s Day Off” (1986)
"The past can hurt. But
the way I see it, you can either run from it, or learn from it."
– Rafiki, “The Lion King”
Victoria: “I love this
quote because while it comes in a moment of humor (after he smacks Simba on the
head with his walking stick), Rafiki's statement is applicable in the real
world, not just to the lions who inhabit Pride Rock. This moment is truly
reflective of why Disney is so universally loved – the mix of humor and
shockingly simple truths that people carry with them far past childhood.”
"And we must remember
that all these things, the nuances, the anomalies, the subtleties, which we
assume only accessorize our days, are effective for a much larger and nobler
cause. They are here to save our lives. I know the idea seems strange, but I
also know that it just so happens to be true."
– Karen Eiffel, “Stranger
Than Fiction” (2006)
Stephanie: “It's a movie
about a man who discovers he's the main character in a tragic novel, and goes
about trying to avoid his imminent death. And it's about finding meaning in our
lives the way we find it in literature: this quote kind of sums that up.”
Mary: “Bread ... that this
house may never know hunger.” [Mary hands a loaf of bread to Mrs. Martini.] “Salt
... that life may always have flavor.” [Mary hands a box of salt to Mrs. Martini.]
George Bailey: “And wine ...
that joy and prosperity may reign forever.”
– “It’s a Wonderful Life” (1946)
Kim: “This is my favorite
movie of all time, but this quote also reminds me of my best friend's wedding
nearly 20 years ago. Her dad gave a toast and presented the couple with these
Annie Reed: “Now that was when people KNEW how to be in love. They knew it! Time, distance ...
nothing could separate them because they knew. It was right. It was real. It
Becky: “A movie! That's your problem! You don't want to be in love. You want to be in
love in a movie.”
– “Sleepless in Seattle”
Ashley: “We have to allow
people to be human, normal, flawed and such. I love to quote this funny and
true reminder when thinking or talking about expectations – even though this is
about romance just about any life situation or relationship applies. Life and movies
are, graciously, not the same.”
"…In Italy for thirty
years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder, and bloodshed, but
they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In
Switzerland they had brotherly love - they had 500 years of democracy and
peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock."
– Harry Lime, “The Third Man”
Jamie: "This quote is
such a perfect distillation of the mentality of the character (who steals
penicillin from military hospitals during WWII, dilutes it, and then sells it
on the black market), but it also reveals how easy it can be to rationalize the
very worst of human behavior, which makes me think of another quote from
the 1983 film 'The Big Chill': 'I don't know anyone who could
get through the day without two or three juicy rationalizations. They're more
important than sex.' And Orson Welles' delivery of the 'cuckoo
clock' line is brilliant."
Mark your calendars! The 85th annual Academy Awards (the Oscars) are scheduled for this Sunday, Feb. 24, 2013. This could be a record-breaking year for the Oscars, as this year’s Best Actress category includes the nomination of Quvenzhané Wallis, 9, the youngest actress to ever be nominated for the Best Actress award. If Wallis wins, she will be the youngest person to ever win an Academy Award for acting, beating Tatum O’Neal’s record set in 1974 for her Best Supporting Actress win at 10 years old for “Paper Moon.”
Interestingly, although Wallis is now 9 years old, she was only 6 when “Beasts of the Southern Wild” was filmed. Wallis is also from Houma, La., the same part of Louisiana as Lesley’s in-laws!
We polled the B team to find out their picks in the top six categories of Hollywood’s biggest night. See our picks below and let us know who you think is going to win!
Submitted by Jennifer on January 25, 2013 - 10:49am
Let’s face it: we’re a society of addicts.
We’re all just one intervention away from breaking down in tears and handing
over our smartphones in defeat. Here at Balcom, the Bs are no different.
I won’t mention a name, but there’s one person at the office whose eyes are
like a direct laser beam to their iPhone. Our face-to-face conversations pan
out like a bad date: I sit there talking endlessly about myself while this
person, who shall remain nameless, is captivated by an app, occasionally
reassuring me by saying “I’m listening” when I pause during my monologue.
Apparently, eye contact and human interaction are his (or her? I’m still not
I’ll admit it – I had an unhealthy addiction to
Words with Friends after
getting my iPhone. With 20+ games going simultaneously, I spent my waking
moments enraptured by the app, trying to attain triple-word scores by haphazardly
throwing together configurations of letters that Words with Friends would
accept – so-called “words” that undoubtedly left the dictionary scratching its
In a state of unbridled honesty (and forced
compliance), the Bs decided to face their addictions* and come clean about the smartphone
apps they can’t live without:
Jamie is addicted to the Solitaire app, playing it while in line at the
store, at the doctor's office, or waiting for a meeting to start. She’s played
39,441 games and 1,071 hours worth of Solitaire. Jamie has admitted she has a
Mike just can’t stop the music. He has to
have his Spotify app.
Audrey is an Elf Yourself addict – which is the reason the Bs
refuse to share pictures with her anymore.
Who knew Kim was so addicted to celebrity gossip? All those times we thought
she was emailing from her phone, she was probably just checking her People CelebWatch app!
Poor Steve. We
knew he liked coffee, but the extent of his dependency is now becoming clear.
Steve uses the Starbucks app (multiple times a day, we’re
sure) to pay for his orders, redeem rewards for free drinks, and find locations
when the caffeine cravings become unbearable.
Eric, like many guys, is an ESPN ScoreCenter junkie. He
tried to downplay how much the app meant to him, but we all know that the road
to recovery begins with overcoming denial.
Saying we’re concerned about Toni’s Twitter use would be an understatement. A self-proclaimed Twitter app junkie, Toni admits she
“didn’t know what she did before Twitter.” One day at a time, Toni.
Carol is full-blown Echofon junkie. She uses the app to review
her Twitter feed and the many lists she’s created, which include a News list,
where she scans Tweeted headlines from various outlets; a client list that
allows her to check on clients’ feeds; and a B Team list to keep up with
Trey is fanatical about checking The Weather Channel app to make sure he doesn’t head out
into dreaded cold weather. Since we’re in Texas, we’re guessing this isn’t a daily
A die-hard weather app fanatic, Alan currently has over 10 variations of weather apps on his phone. Oh
Carol uses the Surf Report app from Oakley to check the tides, wave
heights, and temperatures at beaches around the world (and hopes that a
teleportation feature is released soon). We’d seen her leave in the middle of
meetings, grab her surfboard and run hurriedly from the office – now we know
Ashley and Stephanie love
the super-organizing app, Evernote. They use it to take notes and organize
to-do lists that sync with their devices. They can obsessively check it
throughout the day to make sure everything is still organized – which it always
Krystal and Kim are
two organized moms! They both use the RenWeb app to daily check their children’s grades,
homework, or the school directory. We’re just glad our parents couldn’t check our
grades from their phones when we were growing up!
Jeff is obsessed with the Google Now
app, a virtual assistant for Android users – which Jeff claims is the superior
version of Apple's Siri. (Jeff is using the classic tactic of diverting
attention away from his addiction by criticizing someone else – in this case
Victoria and Lynne are
compulsive texters. The iMessage app allows them to make plans and
keep in touch with friends. Plus, in Lynne’s case, it allows her to keep in
contact with a son who doesn’t use his phone for talking.
Ali has to deal with a daily influx of
text messages from all her friends. To solve this, she uses the DeskSMS app that forwards her text messages
to her Google chat so she can quickly type a response without ever picking up
her phone. We wish we were this popular.
Brian can’t live without his emails,
so he compulsively checks his Gmail app every five minutes.
Hooked on Houses:
Lesley is hooked on the Realtor.comapp, which she uses to search new listings in her
neighborhood. We’re hoping she finds a home soon – she keeps randomly dropping
terms like “appraisal,” “FHA” and “escrow” into work conversations – no one
knows what she’s talking about.
So, now that you know our app weaknesses (and since you’re in a
safe place where you won’t be judged), what’s your must-have app? Please tell
us in the comments below so we don’t feel so insecure!
*The Bs are taking the necessary steps to overcome their app addictions, starting with the basics: looking to their childhoods and finding the root of their issues. We’re told there’s an app for that.
Submitted by Jennifer on January 11, 2013 - 4:49pm
With 2012 quickly becoming a distant memory, the Bs decided
to take a look back at our favorite ads of the last year. As individuals, we
each had a different set of criteria for our choice of favorite ad: whether it
played on emotions, spoke to our sense of humor, or simply struck us with its
After a lot of deliberating, we narrowed down the competition
to share with you our top picks for favorite ads of 2012:
1. Allstate "Mayhem"
You must live under
a rock if you haven't seen an Allstate "Mayhem" commercial on TV. The campaign began in 2010, when we were introduced to
the now infamous "Mayhem" character, played by Dean Winters. Whether Mayhem is
the blind spot of your car sending you into an occupied lane or a
less-than-vigilant guard dog letting thieves walk away with your valuables,
we've learned – in a comical way – that mayhem is everywhere and Allstate can
help. Our favorite pick for 2012 goes to Allstate's "Mayhem: Super Fan." It's
easy to see why:
2. LEGO "Imagine"
Designed by Jung von Mutt for LEGO, the "Imagine"
ad campaign is clever yet deceivingly simple. Initially, the audience may be
unaware of the image within the image, but with a little imagination you might
be able to decipher some of your favorite cartoon characters.
3. Chipotle "Back to the Start"
The emotional and endearing stop-motion short film "Back
to the Start" portrays a farmer grappling with the
choices he makes on his farm. Ultimately, the choices he makes cause he and the
audience to question the welfare of the animals and the industrialization of
the food industry. With an evocative soundtrack of Coldplay's "The Scientist"
covered by Willie Nelson, "Back to the Start" definitely earns its spot as a top
contender for our favorite ad of 2012.
4. SportsCenter "John
Beginning in 1994, SportsCenter's "This is SportsCenter"
campaign has many years of practice making its audience keel over with laughter.
In 2012, SportsCenter debuted their "John Clayton" commercial
featuring real-life ESPN writer and reporter John Clayton – a seemingly dorky
and unassuming character – who is revered for his professionalism and
contributions to the company; however, within seconds, the audience sees
Clayton finish his segment from his childhood bedroom, and the rest you'll have
to watch for yourself:
5. Ultimat Vodka
"Stop Working. Start Drinking."
Guerilla marketing at its finest, Ultimat Vodka's "Stop
Working. Start Drinking." ad goes sky high to intimately reach its target
audience. Watch how these window washers get the message across to men and
women at work in New York and Chicago:
Find out which ad
each Balcom Agency employee chose as their favorite for 2012:
this Starburst Flavor Morph "Mean Streets" commercial funny every time. Besides the
humor, it earns points for tying in the product with the fun, youthful
demographic that enjoys the candy.
this Crest "3D
White" Whitestrips commercial because of its ability to speak directly
to the problem.
Eric chose this
hilarious Carlton Draught "Beer
Chase" ad – an original take on not drinking and driving that is still able to show people's
preference for the beer.
towards minimalistic ads, so it's no wonder he chose this simple and effective
LEGO ad "Imagine"
as his favorite. It forces the viewer to do the work, but the payoff is great
when you see it.
this NFL Evolution
commercial about a mother's concern for her little boy playing football, and
how the NFL is making the game safer. The irony that Ray Lewis is her son is
hilarious, and hearing Tom Brady call him a "cute kid" never gets old.
Kim chose the
Canon "Imagination" ad
because of the brilliant concept and stunning execution of the commercial,
which shows people capturing amazing shots with the camera.
chose Proctor & Gamble's "Best
Job" video – a salute to moms worldwide – which went viral on social media
during the 2012 Olympics.
loved the Fiat "Immigrants"
commercial because it grabs your attention when the cars drive into the sea.
Overall, it taps into cultural associations and the international appeal of the
Lauren T. picked
AT&T's "Hello" ad
because of three reasons: it's about football, it's a viral social media piece
and it's inspiring.
Steve appreciate the deadpan
style of the "This is SportsCenter" ads, so it's no surprise that they both
chose the hysterical "John
Clayton" ad as their favorite for 2012.
favorite ad of 2012 was Shiner Wild Hare Pale Ale's "Breeding Habits," a great play
on Mutual of Omaha's "Wild Kingdom."
Submitted by Jennifer on October 26, 2012 - 11:36am
I love, love, love the holiday season. Yes, I’m that person
that starts playing Christmas music in October and puts up Christmas
decorations before Thanksgiving – I’m obnoxious, and I know it. Everything
about the holidays puts me in a good mood: the smell of pumpkin candles,
drinking hot chocolate, eating sugar cookies, the brisk weather (well, this is
negotiable for Texas), the Christmas lights gleaming, and the anticipation of
However, I am well aware that the holiday season doesn’t
have the same affect on others. It seems that many people get overly stressed during
the holiday season, especially at the thought of Christmas shopping. So, if
you’re feeling Grinchy this year, here’s some ways you can avoid the usual stress of
Start Early: Don’t leave the Christmas shopping until the last minute; make
sure you hit the stores early (October or November) before the crowds arrive.
There is nothing worse than the onset of road rage from mall parking lots. By
going early, you don’t run the risk of buying a lame gift out of desperation,
and you’ll also be able to shop around for the best prices.
Make a List: This is the easiest way to organize your Christmas shopping.
Make a list of everyone you will be buying a gift for. Then, start jotting down
gift ideas next to that person’s name. Also, write down a list of what you want this year, and be sure to
mention these things to your family.
Buy an extra gift: It’s inevitable that a neighbor or co-worker, who you didn’t
buy a gift for, will end up giving you a gift. Although it isn’t always
necessary to return their kindness with a gift, a can of yummy ginger
snaps or a scented candle can be easy to exchange in a pinch. Plus, this
will save you another trip to the store.
Just ask: When it comes to family members, always start by asking what
they want for Christmas. Unfortunately, as we get older, we feel it isn’t
acceptable to write down our Christmas wish list, let alone actually tell
someone what we want. You never know, your aunt might be overjoyed to tell you that
all she really wants for Christmas is
“Magic Mike” on Blu-ray. This makes your Christmas shopping so much easier, and
people get what they really want.
Shop Online: If you truly can't stand the mall, consider shopping online.
The website Overstock.com has low
shipping fees and free shipping if you spend over $50. Plus, they have everything
imaginable from jewelry to home furnishings to electronics. Another good
website is Etsy.com, where you can purchase unique,
homemade and customized gifts for the whole family. Also, try browsing online before heading to the store, so you have a plan in place. This saves you from aimlessly walking around the store and potentially going home empty handed.
Remember, it’s the thought that counts: Christmas is meant to bring families together. It is meant
to be a joyous time. Don’t go crazy buying gifts you can’t afford. You
won’t be celebrating if all you can think about is how much debt you’ve accrued.
Think back on your favorite Christmas memories. They're likely memories
of spending time with friends and family, not the specific gifts you received
that year. Make a budget and stick with it – and don’t feel the need to
apologize for spending less on people’s gifts.
Give back: There is nothing worse than being down on your luck during
the holiday season. When you get stressed over slightly burning the Christmas turkey, think about those who have no food to enjoy on Christmas. This year, be sure to do some good in your community, like
donating a gift to Toys For Tots or dropping
off food at your local food bank.
Don’t forget: Be Merry!
Don’t let the person who cuts you off in the mall parking lot
ruin your day. Be sure to enjoy the holidays and make some great memories. Host
a small Christmas gathering and serve something unique, like apple-pie
spiced cider that everyone will remember. Have the whole family help decorate the tree while listening to Christmas music. Gather your family around the TV
to watch “A Christmas Story” or "Christmas Vacation" while drinking hot chocolate. Sit your kids down
and read The Polar Express before
bedtime. These are the things that I remember from my childhood that make
Christmas such a special time of year. Don’t let the holidays stress you out –
get organized and make some wonderful memories; you never know how big your little Grinch heart might grow!
Submitted by Jennifer on September 7, 2012 - 2:18pm
Two years ago, I couldn’t
have named one running back in the NFL, let alone tell you which team won the
Super Bowl that year.
Last year, I was asked to
join a fantasy football league. I’m not sure what was more embarrassing: the
fact that I knew nothing about
football or the fact that I wasn’t sure what fantasy football was or how it
I agreed to play and showed
up to the fantasy draft with some players’ names scribbled down on a pink
post-it note. When I saw all the other league participants with spreadsheets
and laptops at the ready, I knew I was in over my head.
The plan for my draft was
simple: I just picked players who were blessed with good looks. I had a short
list (because I’m picky – hence the post-it), which consisted of a few players
that had caught my eye on magazine covers or “TMZ.” Fortunately for me, one of my
picks, Drew Brees, actually had some skill on the field.
When it came to picking a
defense, I was stumped – I didn’t know what to do. Finally, other people in my
league just started suggesting teams to pick, and I ended up with the Chicago
Bears’ defense. From there, I thought it was only fitting to name my fantasy football
team of 2011 “The Bad News Bears.”
We were bad news. Drew, or ‘Drewy Boo’ as I like to call him, tried to
carry the team on his own by consistently putting up big points each week.
Unfortunately, it was a one-man show. Reggie started out rocky for weeks – well,
let’s be honest, months. And poor LT never seemed to find his groove. (I nearly
drafted him again this year, but thankfully, a quick Google search prior to
draft night proved he had “retired.”)
Shortly after the season
began, I traded some of my pretty boys, hoping some new players
could pick up some slack. Unbeknownst to me, one of my new picks, Plaxico
Burress, had recently been released from prison after a two-year stint for criminal
possession of a handgun. Allegedly, Plaxico had accidently shot himself
in the leg while at a nightclub. Of course, my league found my trade choice to
be extremely amusing.
But, I guess Plaxico’s leg
had healed nicely while he served his time in prison because he ended up being
the least of my worries – my other players continued to underperform and my team
lost matchup after matchup, week after week. Ultimately, I finished the season
in last place. I’ve always thought there should be a consolation prize for the
person that places last. Apparently, no one else gets a consolation prize other
than second place – whatever.
So, here I am in 2012,
throwing away my money again to participate
in fantasy football. Luckily, I was able to draft Drew ‘Drewy Boo’ Brees again
this year, which (to the relief of my fellow league members) prevented me from
bursting into tears and having a public meltdown.
I also picked Reggie, again,
for three reasons:
1. I want him to succeed so he
can show Kim Kardashian what she’s missing.
2. He’s playing for the Miami
Dolphins again this year and Turquoise is my favorite color.
3. He’s just so adorable.
Here’s the motley crew I handpicked
for this year’s aptly named “Gone with the Brees” fantasy team*:
Gone With the Brees
QB – Drew Brees (NO)
WR – Wes Welker (NE)
WR – Andre Johnson (Hou)
RB – Matt Forte (Chi)
RB – Reggie Bush (Mia)
RB – DeAngelo Williams (Car)
TE – Antonio Gates (SD)
K – Stephen Gostkowski (NE)
DEF – San Francisco 49ers
QB – Sam Bradford (StL)
RB – Pierre Thomas (NO)
RB – Donald Brown (Ind)
WR – Antonio Brown (Pit)
WR – Devery Henderson (NO)
Let’s hope I do better than
last year, which wouldn’t be much of a stretch.
Since I love the Saints so
much, I did contemplate drafting the entire New Orleans Saints starting lineup,
but I rationalized that this could get tricky come bye week.
See, I’m already learning.
suggestions and recommendations are gladly accepted.
Photo: Jennifer's rescue dog, Sloan, an 8-year-old border collie/heeler mix.
America is a country of animal lovers. According to the ASPCA, approximately 62 percent of all households in the
United States own a pet; however, we are currently facing a severe overpopulation
crisis of domestic animals in our nation’s shelters.
The ASPCA estimates that 5
to 7 million companion animals enter animal shelters nationwide every year. Sadly,
of these numbers, 3 to 4 million dogs and cats are euthanized annually in the United States.
Yet, despite these
statistics, animal-loving Americans continue to seek out breeders and pay hundreds
(sometimes even thousands) of dollars to purchase their pets.
So, what is the rationale
behind buying a dog from a breeder?
You want a puppy. Shelters and rescue groups always
have available puppies, especially in the spring and summer months. It’s funny
because most people think they want a
puppy, when in reality, they have little understanding of how much time and
effort it takes to raise and properly train a puppy. Many young dogs are
surrendered to the shelters for this reason alone.
You think there must be something wrong with a
shelter dog. This is a sad misconception
for so many shelter dogs – they are usually there due to no fault of their own.
The majority of shelter dogs are loving and kind, and many are usually already housebroken
and obedience trained. Another thing to know: there is nothing wrong with a
mutt. In fact, they can be healthier and less prone to genetic
diseases than a purebred dog.
How do you go about adopting a dog? Here are two options:
1. Local Shelter: Many shelters have designated areas
where you can play with your potential new dog, and some even let you bring
your current pets to see how they get along. The dog will be spayed/neutered
and given their shots.
2. Rescue Group: A rescue group is comprised of
volunteers who “rescue” dogs from shelters. They spend months learning the
dog’s traits, fostering them in their homes, and getting the dog ready for
adoption. They take all the guesswork out of adopting a dog; you’ll know exactly
what you are getting and you can find a dog that perfectly fits your lifestyle.
Dogs in a rescue group will be:
Fully checked by
all their shots
Rid of any
intestinal parasites or fleas
(and treated, if necessary)
On monthly flea
medicine and heartworm preventative
Fostered in a
dogs, cats and children
in the process of being trained
In both cases, you will pay an
adoption fee for your new dog, which sometimes people think can be high. But take
into consideration, these fees probably don’t even cover the costs (listed
above) that the shelter and rescue groups have incurred.
Rescue dogs are amazing,
resilient animals who have a lot of love to give, especially for the person who
recues them. As an animal-loving country, we should be advocating the plight of
pets in our local shelters and educating people on the need for adoptions, spaying
Take a trip to your local shelter;
walk around and see how many pets are there. Or, check out the list of
adoptable pets from a local rescue group. You will be hard-pressed to not see one face that you wouldn’t
consider taking home. If you do adopt or rescue your next pet, you should be
proud – you have saved a life! In no time at all, you will realize why rescue pets rock!
Rescue dogs have
undergone a lot of stress. Give your new dog some time to settle into your new
home. It could take months before they start exhibiting normal behavior.
breed before adopting. Although not all
dogs conform to breed standards, some breeds will need more exercise or
grooming than others.
A pet is a huge
commitment. Ask yourself if you have the time, money and dedication needed to
offer a pet a forever home. Click here
for the annual costs of pet ownership.
When I first moved from England to Texas in 1999, there were
a lot of things I didn’t understand about my new home. Ordering at a Mexican
food restaurant was exhausting; the words “quesadilla,” “queso” and
“chimichanga” meant nothing to me. My first encounter with a flying roach/waterbug
left me locked in my bedroom for hours crying and screaming: “But, what was
that thing? And why was it attacking me?”
Here are just a handful of things I’ve learned about Texas
over the years:
Texas summers are equivalent to living in an
oven. I’ve always questioned why the settlers didn’t just keep going.
People in Texas don’t know how to drive in the
rain. Or ice. Or “snow.”
Texas doesn’t get a winter. You have a one-day
ice storm then the next day it’s 75 degrees and you’re celebrating Christmas in
shorts and a t-shirt.
The weather can fluctuate 60 degrees in one day.
Food & Drink In Texas:
Tex-Mex. It is appropriate for 5 different
meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner, late night snack and then hangover cure in the
The best hamburger you will ever eat you’ll find in Texas.
Mr. Pibb and Root Beer are the greatest
Texans are obsessed with iced tea. I still
haven’t figured out why.
A ‘Coke’ refers to every type of soft drink:
Coke, Dr Pepper, Sprite, Diet Coke, etc. It just doesn’t make sense to me.
Ranch goes with everything. Pizza without ranch
is now utterly pointless.
You can put a beer upside down in a margarita
and it tastes delicious.
Animals In Texas:
Everything poisonous lives in Texas. If it
crawls, slithers, or pretty much moves in any way, don’t touch it. It could
probably kill you.
Armadillos are the cutest things in the world,
but it seems they aren’t very good at crossing the road.
I’m still not sure if the ‘Horned Frog’ is real
or just an urban legend? Same thing goes for the Jackalope.
Cockroaches are the devil’s creation and grow to
preposterous sizes. And, apparently, they can fly.
Even though I’ve been here for 13 years, I still have a lot
left to learn! Being from England, I knew very little about the Civil War –
really all I knew was what I’d seen in “Gone With the Wind.” I ended up taking
a Civil War class in college and was excited to impress my Texas family with my
newfound knowledge. One day, I found myself admiring a portrait above the
fireplace in my Grandmother’s living room. I turned to her in excitement and earnestly
exclaimed: “I really like that portrait you have of Ulysses S. Grant.” She
looked at me in horror and sternly replied: “That is a portrait of Robert E. Lee!”
I like to give practical gifts – it makes me
feel like I’m doing someone a favor by giving them something they need, even if
they don’t know they need it. One Mother’s Day, being the caring daughter that
I am, I gave my mother a new shower curtain as a gift …
For years I had endured the sight of her nasty shower
curtain. It was a horrible plastic material with a mirage of seashells repeated
every few feet. One word: hideous. So, I went to Target, bought a metal shower
rod, metal shower hooks, a mold-free shower curtain liner and an attractive lilac
shower curtain. I individually wrapped each item, making her open the shower
Needless to say, she wasn’t overly amused when
she opened up the mold-free shower curtain liner on Mother’s Day. I guess the sentiment
behind "20 years guaranteed no mold" was lost on her. By the time she finally
unwrapped the shower curtain, I think she was more annoyed by the whole
process than anything else. In the end, I had to assemble the gift myself.
My advice: don’t go practical when you shop for
your mom this Mother’s Day. Just buy her the new purse she wants and call it a
I am literally the last person to jump on the bandwagon for anything. So, in natural fashion, I never watched “Mad Men” – even though everyone was raving about how good it was. I actually work in advertising, so my coworkers were constantly harassing me about it. I even gave them these really cool “Mad Men” promotional pens I didn’t want – the ad man falls from the building, just like the intro to the show.
Finally last month, I added all four seasons of “Mad Men” to my Netflix list, and immediately regretted giving away the pens! The show is incredible – witty, smart, captivating and tantalizing. I literally can’t get enough of the characters and the complex storyline.
Set in 1960s New York at the fictional Sterling Cooper advertising agency, “Mad Men” portrays account executives and creative types spending most of their days drinking, smoking and schmoozing clients. So, what’s changed?
I’m just kidding – a lot has changed. Obviously, we don’t smoke inside the office anymore.
Here are some of the differences and similarities between the Sterling Cooper agencies of the 60s and advertising agencies today:
• Women aren’t restricted to simply working as secretaries.
• The dress code is far more casual.
• We use computers instead of typewriters.
• It has to be closer to 5 p.m., not 10 a.m., for us to start drinking.
• We don’t take naps on the couches in our offices.
• Lawn mowers are strictly prohibited from office use.
• Advertising remains a fun industry.
• We bring our dogs to the office, just like Duck brought his dog, Chauncey.
• Practical jokes still run rampant.
• We host office parties, although our Christmas party could never be compared to the “Führer’s Birthday.”
• The basic creative process remains the same: copywriters conjure up witty taglines, art directors create the artwork, and creative directors have the final say of what goes before the client.
For the most part, the advertising industry remains as colorful as it’s portrayed in “Mad Men.” The people are unique, and every day is different – you never know what is going to happen. In the words of Roger Sterling: "Believe me, somewhere in this business, this has happened before.” No matter what “this” is, it is probably true!
The award-winning series “Mad Men” returns to AMC this Sunday, kicking off Season 5 with a 2-hour premiere. If you haven’t seen “Mad Men,” I highly suggest you jump on the bandwagon. Trust me, I work in advertising.