Friday, December 21, 2012

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

One Direction Goods

If you're looking for something for that dedicated One Direction fan, head over to Five Below where you can score some awesome (NOT!) cheap-ass One Direction items for $5.

Every girl needs press one nails with their favorite singer's picture on them. I'd just put the photo nail on my middle finger.

Here's a close-up. Look - he even signed the box!

Because every girl needs to carry Louis around on a keychain.

Attractive, yes? Could his nose get any bigger? My kids kept commenting on his lips. So kissable.

And you can always keep your One Direction love in a jar - on a key chain. And maybe take him out once in awhile

The ugliest charm bracelet ever.

Monday, November 19, 2012

How not to get me to post something

I have to laugh when I get emails like this. Turns out this guy Vladimir did pay me to put two sponsored posts on my blog. They didn't go over very well with my readers.

Good morning. I have a favour to ask. I started my own website and  trying to promote it.

So can you please share this new infografic we made on your blog, for free? This would really mean a lot, cause we spent a lot on design and content, so we are trying to save on promotion))

This is infografic itself (NO, I DID NOT CLICK ON THE LINK)

Here is the code to add on in a post: (HA HA - WON'T BE NEEDING THAT!)

I don't need whole post dedicated to infographic. Just add it in the end of your next post... Thank you very much. (THANKS FOR TELLING ME WHAT TO DO WITH MY BLOG)

BTW - have a look at the site, how do you find it? Also we would love travel bloggers to become our guest writers, cause they can give a lot good advices on how to save money while travelling. And of course we would love the advices to be adressed to girls and women, and written by girls and women. Cause this whole project is based on women.
Anyway, please get back to me on this question.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Stupid Press Release: Squatty Potty

One of my colleagues sent me this press release she received. My comments are not about the product's usefulness (if their claims are valid, wouldn't any stepstool do the trick? Like my kids' baby stepstools they use to reach the sink?), and more about their choice of language and the double entendre. The "hold your coverage" line was hilarious - especially given the constipation theme.

"People worldwide have been pooping better since the Squatty Potty was released last fall. That’s because the Squatty Potty, a toilet stool, improves bathroom posture, making it easier to assume the squatting position for more effective colon elimination.

A rising trend in health circles, experts say squatting helps in the prevention of colon disease, constipation, hemorrhoids, pelvic floor issues and similar ailments. In an effort to help alleviate the strain caused by using the modern toilet, Robert Edwards created the Squatty Potty. Its convenient design helps properly align the colon, and can easily be stored at the base of the toilet to prevent bathroom clutter between uses.
Next Tuesday, Squatty Potty will be announcing that it has sold 10,000 stools in six months. Would you be interested in talking to Robert prior to the announcement? We would just ask that you hold your coverage until Tuesday."

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Deseret Digital Media wants you write content for them for free

Lately, I've gotten a lot of emails from companies asking me to write for their blog or website - for free. There's a time and a place to write for free, but if I complied with each of these requests, I'd have no time for paid work. The latest one really ticked me off, and it prompted me to respond to the company. Read on:

Dear Debbie,  

I work for Deseret Digital Media, and I wanted to know if you’d be interested in writing for an exciting, new family-based website launching this fall. We are looking for exceptional mommy bloggers who want to build their fan base and share their expertise with the world. will provide practical answers, ideas and solutions to help educate families. (E.g. “How to be a good listener”, “How to deal with a picky eater”, or “10 things you should never say to your wife”.) Selected articles will be translated into 25 different languages and published on 100 country-specific sites.

This is a unique opportunity and outlet for writers to gain exposure to huge worldwide audience. The Deseret Digital Media sites have more than 4 million unique visitors and 200 million page views each month. Through social media, we already also have access to 11 million readers, and at launch, we anticipate that will be highly successful.

Contributors can chose how little or how much they want to write. We do not compensate for articles, but we do provide bylines for contributors to link back to their websites to drive traffic and build their Google ranking.

If you are interested, please contact (content editor) for more information!


Dear (content editor) - I'm very honored that you want me to write free content so that your site can make money. Last time I checked, my mortgage company and phone company didn't accept "exposure" for payment, even if I was exposed to international audiences. Maybe one of those readers will actually click through to my site and I'll make a penny from Google Adsense!

If you manage to find some spare cash from all those 200 million clicks a month, I'd be happy to talk about blogging for pay, as I've done for several corporations who actually value my writing.

All the best, Debbie

Debbie - Thank you for your response. I can understand your frustration, and I respect your need for needing to make a profit. Our goal for our site is not to make a profit at all, but to help and reach hundreds of millions of families worldwide  with their struggles and problems. In all honesty, we are just trying to break even. Our project is heavily subsidized by generous donations. We are extremely grateful for those people, and the thousands of writers who chose to give up their time to make a lasting difference in people's lives. I don't want you to have the impression that we are out to make a lot of money — because we're not. 

I'm sorry that you've taken offense. 

(Content Editor) - I very much appreciate your response and found it quite interesting. Given the plethora of quality parenting websites and blogs out there, I find it difficult to understand how any large media company only wants to break even on a new site aimed at families. There's certainly no lack of information out there - and some of it is actually quite good.

However, upon doing a little research I see that your company is owned by the Mormon Church**, so it looks like the Church and Mitt Romney's tithings are bankrolling your project. Maybe you want to make that clear to the writers you seek to provide you with free content. 

All the best, Debbie

Not shockingly, I did not hear back from said content editor. However the next day, someone else from their company contacted me with the same email as the first, only they didn't even bother to put a subject line on. I forwarded her the correspondence, and...crickets. Ha ha!

Friday, August 31, 2012

How Not to Keep in Touch as a PR Person

If you're a PR person writing to a journalist, you might send an email like this:

Hi Debbie, 

It's been a while since we were last night touch so thought I'd just drop a line to see how you were doing and what kind of things you were working on these days. Are holidays on your radar yet? 

Look forward to getting back in touch and hope you have a great long weekend. 


The problem with this (aside from using the word "night" instead of "in") is that I have no clue who the PR person is, and who they represent. Why would I bother spilling my guts on how my life is going and what I'm working on, to a stranger?

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Are McDonald's Social Media Strategies Stupid?

Usually I write about Stupid Products and Stupid Press Releases (hence the blog name). But today I'm doing something different - actually noting an ongoing and multifacted PR campaign that's interesting. It's from McDonald's. Yes, McDonald's! Like many brands, they're trying to appeal to the mom bloggers as well as regular consumers. Ad Age had an interesting article this week discussing their social media campaign in the U.S. And the New York Times had an excellent story on how McDonald's is remaking itself (menu, store interior) and using Twitter to tell stories. They invited a handful (well, three handfuls) of bloggers for an all-expense paid trip to its headquarters where they were wined and dined (so to speak) to get the word out.

I wasn't invited to that, but I've had my share of attention from McDonald's as a blogger. (Keep reading for some video below).

As the publisher of Frisco Kids, I've been contacted several times by PR firm for McDonald's Bay Area.  For the past few months, I've gotten emails offering me information on McDonald's meals for 600 calories or less, eating on the run with the USDA MyPlate guidelines, customizing orders at McDonald's, and what the chain is doing from a quality food and nutritional menu offerings.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Stupid Product: Monokini

This is the worst fashion trend anywhere: the monokini. It must die.

Why, oh why would someone wear this style? Even with a rockin' bod, it looks awful. Even with a whittled waist line, this thing makes you look like you have none. It just looks like excess fabric stuck in the middle, with the only curves being on the design.

Our own New Jersey example, from this weekend (no, it's not me - I'm not that tan). This woman would have looked lovely in a one-piece bathing suit.

This woman below definitely needed to wear a one piece - though this monokini had the advantages of showing off all her tattoos. I wish I got a photo of her standing up, but I wasn't fast enough on the draw. Somehow the majority of women I see wearing these side baring bathing suits, are way too large to make them flattering.

Even pregnant Tori Spelling isn't immune. Hey pregnant lady - your monokini is AWFUL (though she does look better in it than the other two women).

Friday, July 13, 2012

Stupid Product: Watermelon Knife

Not just watermelon knives - also canteloupe knives. I'll admit they are VERY cute. But a knife for cutting just one fruit? I've seen these now at two stores. At the expensive grocery store, they're $24.99 each, and at my regular grocery store, they're $9.99 each (different brands perhaps?). In any case, I think my regular knives work just fine for cutting up fruit.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Product: Thong Pads

I never really thought about what women who wear thongs do when it's that time of the month. Last trip to the grocery store I found out:

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Stupid Product: Cupcake Holder

My daughter and I were shopping today and saw this:

Yes, a domed glass cupcake holder. How practical! For just about every celebratory occasion I have a need to present one cupcake in a grand manner, where I can lift the dome, revealing...a solitary cupcake!

This beauty normally sells for $12.99, however at the store where we shopped, it was on sale for $4.99. Which is still $4.98 too much.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Photo Friday: Installation Instructions

In case you can't read this:

Installation process:
1. first made the pipe of pneumatic nuderprop installation the need open an close cupboard door, installation size is about 70mm fromcupboard door's runing axietree.

2. Keep cupboard door at the place of open 90degree, made the pneumatic underprop free protend then made the beanpole part rivet on rim of cupboard door.

Announlements: The pneumatic underprop's pipe part need upturned, the beanpolt part need adown. Wish made the cupboard door open and close power increase installation sizecan at 80-100mm. Wish made the cupboard door open adn close power allay, installation size can at 50-77mm.
Few sound cushion design. 5 Year quality guarantee.

Instills confidence in the product, right?

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Stupid Product: Healthy Hoohoo

Yes, you read that right. Healthy Hoohoo. And it means exactly what you think it does. It's vaginal cleansing!

The press release has some killer funny lines, like these:

"By avoiding over-washing and harsh cleansers, women who have been using healthy hoohoo are reporting improved moisture, comfort and odor conditions." 

(Odor conditions????)

"When it comes to feminine cleansing, “less is more,” so hoohoo’s formula liberates the body to do what it needs to do. The vagina, after all, is a self-cleaning oven."

(Now, I've heard of a bun in the oven, but a SELF-CLEANING OVEN? Can't say I ever thought of my hoohoo as an oven before, though I guess you could say it gets hot down there! Oh my.)

"healthy hoohoo products are tested on gal pals, not animals"

(Hey, girlfriend, would you mind checking out my new feminine hygienic cleanser, and telling me how your hoohoo smells after?)

So I had to check out the website, where the motto is "woohoo for hoohoo"


The about section had this great line:

After falling victim to mass marketing campaigns for all manner of popular soaps, soaks, cleansers and lotions, Stacy Lyon (a marketer herself by trade) found herself feeling far from fresh and"down there." Stacy thought "I thought I was doing her a favor, by keeping her tidy and smelling like a lavender bouquet."

What am I missing here in life? My crotch has never smelled like a lavender bouquet. As for keeping "down there" tidy, I just assume that would mean some waxing during bathing suit season, not some "popular soaps, soaks, cleansers and lotions." Do people really spend that much effort cleansing their "hoohoos?" Especially since they're self-cleaning ovens?

You can buy this product as a foamer, "light, fluffy and full of nurturing goodness." Or as a hoohoo wash, "a shampoo for your hoohoo, who knew?" 

It's no wonder their media page is empty, except for "coming soon - words of praise, love and holy hoohoo it's about time." Yeah, maybe they'll add this review to it!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Stupid Press Release: Tips for a Healthy Summer Vacation

I just got a press release on behalf of a preventive health company. From E. Towers Mingledorff to be exact. That's not the company name, that's the PR person's name.

This press release is what I call GENERIC and a WASTE OF MONEY. Yes, emails may be free. But buying lists of journalist email addresses is not.

Here is the not-so-helpful list that they provide on how to have a healthy summer vacation. I think my 8 year old could have come up with a better list.

1. Watch what you eat.
2. Drink plenty of water.
3. Wash your hands often.
4. Get adequate sleep.
5. Pack a first-aid kit.
6. Protect yourself from insect bites.
7. Protect yourself from the sun.
8. When traveling internationally.
(yes there is information BELOW this tip, however this is the numbered tip, complete with a period at the end)
9. Beware aware of recreational water illnesses.
10. Traveling with a health condition.
(see #8)

P.S. I checked out E. Towers Mingledorff online. His first name is Edmond. He's got a lovely fiance and is getting married 12/31/12. He's registered at Macy's, Pottery Barn and

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Lisa Rinna? It Depends.

What better way to for Lisa Rinna to promote her new book The Big Fun Sexy Sex Book (rediscovering your lost libido) than by posing for Depends!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Baby Cake

What's wrong with this picture?

Can't figure it out? Look closely at the cake.

That's right. It looks like a FETUS on their baby shower cake.

Here's their conversation:

JR: Would you like to cut the cake, honey?
Diana: no, you can do it.
JR: Shall I cut you a slice with the tea cup or the fetus?
Diana: Why don't you just cut the fetus in two and we can share it.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Stupid Product: Watermelon Knife

I'll give it this - really colorful and attractive.

Do you really need a $25 knife intended to only cut watermelon?

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Stupid Product: Baby Helmet

We all want to protect our children from harm's way. Some parents do this by putting their newly crawling kids in knee pads. Now one company wants to scare you into thinking your new walker will get head injuries, by promoting a helmet.
If this is the type of product you are going to buy for your child, I recommend you consider paneling your walls instead. With a padded room, you'll be the best parent ever, and your child will never scraper her knee crawling OR sustain a head injury.

Thank you Diane, for showing me this product!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

There's a reason it's on clearance

Do you really want party plates with the Twilight characters on it? Put cake, French onion dip and potato chips on their faces?

Friday, March 23, 2012

Stupid Press Release: Swingers!

When journalists pitch editors with story ideas, it's common knowledge that you're supposed to do your homework and know what the publication covers (and preferably that this editor handles the section you're pitching). And it's the same for public relations people. Mass emailing a PR pitch to journalists who don't cover your subject just results in us getting pissed off that you're taking up our email box space.

My friend, who does not cover racy topics such as the one below, forwarded me a press release she got.

"My name is (NAME) I am one of the owners of (I'M NOT LISTING THE SITE). (SITE) is a Lifestyle Dating site, which is really a nice way of saying it is a site for "Swingers" to meet.  It is estimated that there are over 3 million people in The Lifestyle in the U.S. alone, this is not even taking in to consideration the people that want to go out and party and be sexy and are on the fringes of the Lifestyle. People are shocked when they find out that their family, doctor, kids teachers, neighbors etc may actually be Swingers. In addition most major cities have On-Premise swingers clubs, where people can meet and have sex at the club!  Whether they agree with this type of Lifestyle or not, I believe your audience would be interested in the topic.  I would love to do an interview with you on the subject.  I have no problem with it being positive or negative interview from your end. I can also keep it as clean as necessary to not cause you any legal issues. Our travel site is located at (SITE)

P.S.  California is a particularly hot swingers market!"

Now for the sake of research, I looked at the travel website, which was HILARIOUS. The company sells "Lifestyle" trips at all-inclusives, where you can meet up with your own kind (ya know, other teachers, neighbors and doctors). Some items from the schedule: goat races on the nude beach (I can't even make this stuff up), free Pastease (these are pretty funny - I am including the link), nighttime party theme: school girls, oil wrestling party, clothing optional pajama party.

Now if you're into the "Lifestyle" and want the actual websites, just email me. I don't want to keep you from some quality information here.

Stupid Product: Foot Underwear

These may well be the weirdest foot product ever.
I'm sure they serve a useful purpose to dancers (which is why Capezio makes them), but even my son said "those look like underwear."

Now it's your turn to weigh in. (And thanks, Marina for the tip).

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Stupid People

Every week our local newspaper runs the police blotter, showing all the cell phones, briefcases, GPS systems and wallets stolen. Usually from unlocked cars. I snapped this photo at the gym parking lot. REALLY smart to leave your Coach purse on the passenger seat. I didn't check to see if the door was unlocked.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Awkward Engagement Photo

This should be posted in Awkward Family Photos, but instead I'm posting it here.
Does this look like a happy couple celebrating their love for each other, or a couple looking at a skywriting airplane that's spelling out "Eat at Dave's."

I hope they don't plan to use this photographer at their wedding. 

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Scary Giants Baby and Bracelet

It's true that Giants fans are very sad about waiting until the next football season. I'm trying to figure out how many die-hard Giants fans will want to purchase this scary 5" tall "amazingly lifelike" doll. It's only $40 plus $8 shipping. Would you want this on your bookshelf?

And if that's not enough, you can also get a $119 Giants charm bracelet. No need to thank me for bringing you these quality and tasteful items to your attention.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Because Nothing Says Love Like...

a blinged out jar of Vaseline. I'm supposed to convince my blog reader to enter the contest to win one of these $62 jars of petroleum goop (which otherwise retail for $1.99). Sorry folks, not doing it.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Stupid Product: Baby Knee Pads

Is your baby crawling across shards of glass and hot coals hardwood floor? Then you really should get your baby KNEEPADS. Because your baby might get a bruise, scratch or callus.

Didn't your mom tell you how hard it was in the old days? You had to crawl around on the gravel and dirt floor all day, while she had her very own gardening knee protectors?

Look how happy this child is sitting on her bum, with her very own knee guards. For just $20 a pair, you can slide these puppies on when you change your kid out of jammies in the morning. And she can wear knee pads all day long. You never know when she might crawl and hurt herself!

Find Stupid Products on Facebook.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Stupid Polls - Cookies and Cruises

I shake my head when I see some of the polls sent to me by PR people.

Obviously the sinking of the Costa Cruise ship is making a lot of headlines. Hey! Let's capitalize on that by polling people about what THEY would do if their cruise ship sank. The results were just SHOCKING.

-Only 24% of those ages 65+ would jump in and try to swim to safety versus 63% of those ages 18-29.
-Republicans, Democrats and Independents were within a percentage point of each other for agreeing to jump in. Hooray! The political parties agree on something!
-15% of the same youngsters would stay on board hoping for rescue, while 44% of the old people would stay put.
-33% of Democrats would stay put as well, while 26-27% of Republicans and Independents would trust in the government to save them.

While I do love Good Morning America, the poll they conducted with SodaHead on the most popular flavor of Girl Scout cookies was just stupid. The answer? I think you already know.