IS THAT THE SHIRT YOU’RE WEARING?

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It’s finally really happening!

My debut collection of comic essays is set to be released in May 2017!

You can pre-order now at Tidal Press.

ABOUT THE BOOK:

Told over two summers three years apart, Is That The Shirt You’re Wearing? is a collection of Kristen Hansen Brakeman’s funny and poignant essays about her life and family. From a laugh-out-loud debate with her potty-mouthed first grader to the hazards of shopping in an overly perfumed clothing store with her tween, to helping her husband cope with his diagnosis of prostate cancer, Brakeman tackles it all with wit and humor.

While trying to be both wonder-mom to her three kids and dutiful daughter to her aging and ailing mother, she realizes that time with her family is indeed precious. Then, with the sudden passing of her in-laws and the inheritance of their stinky, one-eyed dog, she is propelled to savor every second as her eldest daughter leaves for college.

Throughtout it all, Brakeman makes us laughs and provides insight into the ups and downs of modern family life.

 

 

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F**K Waze, I’m Taking Metro

6993565854_2e13e49305_b“I can survive two weeks driving to Santa Monica. How bad could it be?” I told my husband after accepting a freelance job there recently.

How bad could it be? I’ll tell you — an hour and a freaking half bad, each way, in miserable bumper to bumper traffic with people cutting me off, honking and tailgating, all the while that freaking Waze app telling me to “Turn right.”

Sure, I’ll turn right from the farthest left lane of Wilshire Blvd. What the hell are you thinking with your “turn right” bullshit crazy Waze lady? Continue reading

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TRUMP AVERSION THERAPY BILL

Posted today under pen name Bunny McGillicutty on The Dandy Goat

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In an unusual show of unity, House Republicans joined Democrats in a 421-2 vote to pass the Trump Aversion Therapy Act, which would allocate $300 million towards the rehabilitation of Trump supporters using the controversial Trump Aversion Therapy technique.

The measure’s sponsor, Rep. Richard Whiteman (D-Ohio), said the bill would provide cash incentives to those willing to be rehabilitated.

Details of the therapy have not been released, but sources confirm Continue reading

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I Saw A Meteor and Lost My S…

meteorIt’s 6:38 AM and I’m making my kids’ lunches and staring out my kitchen window mindlessly at the valley below, when this light – this incandescent neon green light – catches my eye low on the horizon. The light gets larger and travels east. It’s a meteorite, my groggy mind realizes, a flipping meteorite, shooting across the morning sky.

Quickly I turn to search for my phone because I have to get this on video, right? Because it’s nothing if it’s not on video. But no, I can’t find my phone and even if I could, who was I kidding? There’s no way my middle-aged fingers could have managed to get my video camera on, and capture this thing.

So instead I turn back and watch and just take it in, all the while feeling guilty that I’m witnessing this magnificent sight all-alone. The streak moved across the sky, grew larger, and then turned into a ball – a big, freaking green ball with flames coming off the edges! Then, just like that, it burns up and it’s gone. Continue reading

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Flashback Thursday: A Trumped Up Government

I was doing a little housekeeping in my blog and discovered this piece I wrote back in May 2011 when Trump first made noise about running for president, then backed out. I wrote this back when the idea of Trump, a reality TV star, being president was an absurd thought!

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May 10, 2011

Ahh Donald backed out. But it would have been so much fun – here’s what will be missing:

President Trump, with Vice President Snooki at his side, could assemble an entire team of reality stars to run the government. To help tackle our huge deficit, Trump could institute a pay-by-text voting system where America gets to vote out his poorly performing cabinet secretaries. And with their jobs and departments gone, even more taxpayer money would be saved.

The whole thing could be broadcast on C-SPAN. Not the current boring C-SPAN of course, but a trumped up C-SPAN, if you will.

Trump’s new press secretary, The View’s Sherri Shepherd, could be given the duty of announcing the new cabinet members beginning with the new Secretary of State, Sarah Palin, chosen for her expertise in foreign policy, of course.

Justin Willman, host of Cupcake Wars could lead up the Defense Department. After all, if he can moderate those often-vicious cupcake wars, surely he could handle anything the Middle East throws at him.

The Department of Homeland Security could naturally be led by The Situation. Ain’t nobody gonna mess with that six-pack. And we know he’d crack down on those Hawaiian aliens trying to pass themselves off as actual Americans.

Continue reading

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I SOLD MY BOOK!

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I’m very excited to announce that I sold my book to Tidal Press and it will be traditionally published in May/June of 2017!!!!

The book is a collection of comic essays, a few you might have read here plus many brand new ones never before seen!

Between the essays are updates on my life that take place over two summers: the first, when I’m stuck smack in the middle of my mother/daughter sandwich and wanting to please everyone yet satisfying no one, and the second, three years later when I’m trying to savor every last freaking minute before my eldest leaves for college and consequently rips my beating heart from my chest and stomps on it with her expensive Doc Marten boots (metaphorically speaking of course).

The title – well that’s still up for debate. All ideas are welcome! Probably the title should have something to do with summer. Something catchy and funny that makes people want to buy a copy instantly.  That’s all I require.

If you’d like to leave your email address in the comments, I’ll be sure to send you a note when the book is released.

Thanks for everyone’s encouragement over the years. So many of you have been so kind and supportive. I truly appreciate it.

More details and updates to come!

Kristen

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I Jinxed El Niño – You Can Blame Me

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Originally published on LA Daily News

“The El Niño rains are still coming! They’ll be here in January . . . February, no, we mean March, possibly April, or even late May,” the local weather forecasters all say.

Yet our days feel remarkably like summer, and El Niño seems like a bust.

I don’t blame the scientists. After all, our ocean waters have indeed warmed; we’ve seen the dead crabs and poisonous snakes on our beaches to prove it.

The scientists are not responsible for the forecasts going awry. In truth, it was me. I stopped the rain from coming, by massively over-preparing and giving into full-throttle storm-watch hysteria. I jinxed El Niño. I jinxed it good.  Continue reading

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Laundry 101

I made a video to teach my kids how to do laundry – not sure I actually accomplished that though.

NOW FEATURED ON HUFFINGTON POST PARENTS!

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Kids: Change the $^*#&% Toilet Paper Roll – A Video

I had the house to myself yesterday so I made a video.

Enjoy!

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Breaking: New Pooh Bear Manuscript Found

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New books from deceased or aged authors are as common now as insulting comments by Donald Trump. Fresh on the heels of new releases by the late Theodor Geisel and Harper, comes rumor of another exciting literary discovery, this time from the estate of A.A. Milne, author of the beloved children’s series, Winnie-the-Pooh.

Word of a new manuscript’s existence has set off a firestorm of debate. Literary experts and others with too much time on their hands believe that Edward Bear: Despot of the Wood (its believed title) will be a stand-alone addition to Milne’s collection, much like the new Dr. Seuss book, What Pet Should I Get. Others claim it will be more akin to Harper Lee’s Go Set A Watchman, likely a rough draft of a later, more impressive work.

In leaked excerpts cited below, the Edward Bear character surprisingly refers to himself simply as “The Pooh,” and comes across as a tad rough around the edges. Experts now speculate that Milne’s original intension was for these stories to scare the bejesus out of his only child; encouraging him to stay the hell away from the dangerous woods.

 

Excerpt from Chapter II: 

IN WHICH Pooh Takes Protection Honey From Rabbit

 

“ . . . Rum-tum-tum-tiddle-um. Here I am at Rabbit’s house. Is anybody at home?”

“No!” said Rabbit.

“Bother. There must be somebody here,” said The Pooh, who wasn’t one to take “No” lightly. The Pooh always liked a little something at eleven o’clock so he forced his way through the hole and got in.

Rabbit was duly terrified of the tyrannical Pooh because of his weekly demands for honey in exchange for not harming Rabbit’s many relations. So he shook nervously as he set out plates and mugs for The Pooh.

“Honey or condensed milk?” Rabbit asked.

The Pooh appeared to be having a thoughtful moment, then took a deep breath and bellowed, “Honey! Always honey. Why do you waste my time? Honey!”

After taking his fill of honey and exacting a promise of a delivery of additional pots later in the week, Pooh began his climb back out of the hole. He pulled with his front paws and pushed with his back. Soon The Pooh became stuck.

Rabbit ran to the outside of the hole to help pull The Pooh, but it was no use. About this time, The Pooh’s loyal henchman Piglet arrived. The Pooh launched into an angry tirade about the poor construction of Rabbit’s hole, made unseemly character aspersions about Rabbit’s relations, then ordered his man Piglet to fetch the girly-haired neighbor lad, Christopher Robin, straight away.

“But P-p-pooh, what if he won’t come?” Piglet asked.

“P-p-Piglet,” The Pooh mocked, “I may be a bear of very little brain, but my claws can shred you into bits of breakfast bacon, and will, if you dare question me again. Now, go get that twit of a boy. And bring me some trousers as well. Why didn’t anyone tell me I wasn’t wearing any bloody trousers?”

 

Excerpt from Chapter IV:

IN WHICH Eeyore Loses a Tail and Pooh Assaults Him With Nails
 

. . . it was on particularly sunny day that Eeyore happened by Pooh Corner where Piglet and The Pooh were resting while their captive human boy Christopher Robin cooled them with a fan made of twigs.

“Good morning Eeyore,” Christopher Robin said.

“That pretty mouth of yours is meant for one thing and it’s not talking,” The Pooh reprimanded.

“If it is a good morning,” Eeyore said. “Which I doubt,” said he.

“W-w-what’s the matter, Eeyore?,” asked Piglet.

“It’s pathetic, “ said Eeyore. “One day soon an evil Fascist will take over Germany, invade Poland, war will be declared and a blitzkrieg of bombs will probably rain down upon us. Nobody cares. Pathetic. That’s what it is”

“Oh Eeyore, you’re always so gloomy.” The Pooh said, and laughed at his strange friend with the ridiculous imagination.

“Pooh?”

“Yes, Eeyore.”

“Would you mind returning my bell rope knocker so that I may have a tail once again?” Eeyore asked.

“Certainly,” The Pooh said. Then The Pooh removed the rope knocker from his door and nailed it into the backside of his dear friend Eeyore.

Eeyore screamed in agony.

“Oh, would you prefer it over here instead?” Pooh asked as he hammered the tail into Eeyore’s chest. “Or over here?” Pooh asked as he hammered the tail once again into Eeyore’s bum.

Eeyore screamed repeatedly and bucked his hind legs and ran into the wood, and The Pooh and Piglet enjoyed a hearty laugh at their good friend’s misfortune.

Excerpt from Chapter IX

IN WHICH The Pooh’s Stash is Entirely Surrounded by Water
 

Never had the 100-Acre Wood seen so much rain. While Piglet was anxious to be such a small thing entirely surrounded by water, The Pooh was focused on the safety of his numerous honey pots.

The Pooh commanded all the animals of the forest to carry his pots to high ground and maintain a twenty-four hour watch until the crisis had passed. It was on this longest of longest of nights that Owl began telling a lengthy nonsensical tale about an aunt giving birth to a seagull’s egg by mistake.

The Pooh suddenly interrupted, “Piglet, my dear friend. Do you happen to have a slingshot? Perhaps the one we took from that boy with the funny smock and unfortunate hair?”

Piglet did indeed have the slingshot and handed it to The Pooh. By this time Owl was fully engaged in the telling of his never-ending story. So The Pooh took aim with his slingshot and fired. The unsuspecting bird let out a blood-curling screech and fell to his death below.

“But The P-p-pooh,” Piglet said, “who will watch the honey pots now? Owl was our best nighttime sentry.”

“Oh, Bother,” Pooh sighed.

 

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