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Pop Rocks: 400 Words Or Less

March 22, 2012

With vacation comes clarity.

After doing nothing, I want to do more nothing.

I don’t have time to write.  You don’t have time to read.

Unless you’re in prison.  (What’s up, Peg!)  Then all you have is time.  In which case you might not appreciate this new leaf I’m about to turn over.

I need to cut back the length of my blog posts.  They’re too long.  They’re too blathery.  They’re too my-husband-is-going-to-divorce-me-if-I-don’t-get-off-the-computer.

My last blog post was over 1,000 words.  1,000 words?  I didn’t even know I knew 1,000 words.  I can’t even count 1,000 words.  Okay, I probably can but I don’t have time to.

So my new leaf is this.  Every week, starting today, I will write at least one of my weekly blog posts (on any given topic) in — get this! — 400 words or less.

I’ve never written a blog post that’s 400 words or less.

I can’t order a pizza in 400 words or less.

This doesn’t mean I won’t continue offering my usual ridiculously wordy posts that you’ve come to resent enjoy.  But I’ll make damn sure the very next one will be 400 words or less.  But then I’ll follow that one with another of my ridiculously wordy posts that you’ve come to delete from your inbox enjoy.

Oh, c’mon!  Get off my back!  What do you people want from me?  I can’t change overnight.

But I am going to give it the ol’ college try.  Starting now.

Okay.  Pop rocks.  Here we go.  In 400 words or less.  How many words do I have left?  How many words did I waste in my 400 words or less opening?  Now my heart is racing and it’s like I’m on Super Password and Bert Convy is staring at me and the buzzer is about to sound.  I wig out when I’m being timed and that’s when my mind starts deteriorating into Twinkie fluff because pretty soon I’m thinking about Twinkie fluff and What the hell is in Twinkie fluff? and then I’m hungry for Twinkie fluff and then I realize my SAT test is over and I never figured out what time Train A will reach Boston and then there goes my scholarships and pretty much my entire career.  Let’s see.  Pop rocks.  They’re crackley.  Huh?  Oh.

Blast it.

I’ll do better next time.

Next time — Yentl:  400 Words or Less

73 Comments leave one →
  1. John-Paul permalink
    March 22, 2012 11:46 am

    You had eight more words left over. I bet you could’ve made a cool joke in eight words.

    Just sayin.

    • March 23, 2012 8:49 pm

      “I ate them with soda. Head still intact.” (8 words) Yeah, I think I was better off without those eight words but thanks for pointing it out.

      • John-Paul permalink
        March 23, 2012 11:27 pm

        No problem.

        Wait. You ate them with soda? Were you fricken insane?

      • March 24, 2012 12:39 pm

        Probably something my brother pressured me into. Like biting on aluminum foil kind of thing.

  2. March 22, 2012 11:54 am

    Loved this.

  3. March 22, 2012 12:06 pm

    That is exciting because I only had about 30 seconds to read this. I’m supposed to be working right now. 400 words is awesome. And Pop Rocks. They rock. You had room for that, right?

    • March 23, 2012 8:54 pm

      I know — isn’t it great? It’s a win-win! More time for all! Thanks for reading, MM. I’m sure you have more blogs and readers than you know what to do with, Miss Newly Freshly Pressed. So I appreciate you stopping by, as always.

  4. March 22, 2012 12:06 pm

    I love pop-rocks!

    • March 23, 2012 8:55 pm

      What’s not to love? They’re like a toy and a candy and a science experiment all in one!

  5. KatherinesDaughter permalink
    March 22, 2012 12:07 pm

    I try not to talk too long either. People are just too busy. Less is more girl, that’s what I say. Hope you had a great vacation!

  6. March 22, 2012 12:16 pm

    This: “I can’t order a pizza in 400 words or less.”
    Nor can I, Angie. Nor can I.

    With every comment I leave my goal is the same: write fewer words than the words in the original post.

    I rarely meet my goal, and now you are cutting your posts short – so I am certain to fail when leaving comments on your blog. You’re making me nervous… now I am watching the word count like the second hand on the clock.

    Honestly… I wish you would check with your readers before making such drastic changes. I’m going to try and rid my stress by eating pop rocks and drinking coke.

    P.S. Yentl in 400 words. snort worthy laughter, right there.

    • March 23, 2012 9:01 pm

      I am so with you, Lenore! I am the longest commenter ever. I don’t know why I can’t just shut the hell up. On my blog, I appreciate the long comments because I feel like it warms up the place, sort of like a nice potted plant sitting in the bare institutional office that is my site’s comment space. But when I do it, I feel like I just vomited all over someone’s blog and now they have to clean it up because it’s their house and I’m all like “No, no! You don’t have to clean it up and reply to all of this. I can help you with the paper towels.” And they’re all like “No, really, that’s okay.” And I’m all like “No, really, let me do it.” And they’re all like “Please leave. No really. Get the hell out of here because now my blog is covered in Pop Rocks vomit and this post was supposed to be about my neighbor’s new dog.”

      The End.

  7. March 22, 2012 1:30 pm

    Yay! More pitures! Did you just read my blog tips?
    http://bestbathroombooks.wordpress.com/
    PS- I hate it when people direct you to their blog in the comment box.
    (Your husband paid me to post this)

    • March 23, 2012 9:05 pm

      That post you wrote should be printed out and bolted to the screen of my iPad and tattooed on my inner arm. My husband paid me to say that.

  8. March 22, 2012 1:38 pm

    Too funny! I’ve been trying to keep my posts down to 500 words. It’s hard!!

    • March 23, 2012 9:13 pm

      It’s like trying to play the board game Taboo and every word you want to write causes an opponent to buzz you until you scale it back so much that all you have on a piece of paper is “Pop Rocks” and “candy” and “eat”.

  9. March 22, 2012 3:36 pm

    Really? Prison, Angie?

    Doing time up in this shiz,
    Chomp them rocks an they go fizz.
    You touch mine – thas all they is,
    Cuz I cut you with my shiv.

    (400 or less) Word to yo mutha.

    • March 22, 2012 3:49 pm

      I keep checking in on my stats page just to see how many times people clicked on your name to see what this prison-based blogger looks like. I think you’re up to 8. And then I remembered that I linked you to heroin in another blog post. It’s just so hard not to pick on you as you’re such a good sport, Peg. Not to mention a damn good slam poet.

      • March 22, 2012 4:21 pm

        Mine is the same old story – you’ve heard it a thousand times before. Middle-aged insurance agent/mom/housefrau gets hooked on heroin, suddenly snaps and goes postal on a brilliant, yet twisted, young blogger. When you do the crime, you gotta do the time.

        (I hope gettng outed like this doesn’t cause a problem at the ladies sewing circle meeting at the church tonight…)

      • March 23, 2012 10:11 am

        I popped round again to tell you your entry in The Jacket Writing Competition is a finalist and voting begins today. I think this just goes to show just how impartial this process was, when you give me such grief and still end up as a finalist. Congrats!

        http://pegoleg.wordpress.com/

      • March 23, 2012 8:39 pm

        No way, Peg! Get outta town! Are you sure this isn’t like when they stuffed the ballot box and got Carrie elected prom queen just so they could dump pig’s blood on her? Okay, I won’t get ahead of myself here. If I actually won the vote, then I would start thinking about the pig’s blood.

    • March 23, 2012 5:00 pm

      I have tears in my eyes! Then as I read Peg’s comment out loud to my husband and explained why it was funny – how of course sopapilla (that’s what we call Peg) would not be in prison, I started having my doubts. How much do we really know about “Peg-o-leg” – now I’m really wondering about that jacket . . . .

      I don’t think you need to cut back on your word count Angie – we LOVE reading every word!

      • March 23, 2012 8:44 pm

        Peg’s impromptu sonnet is just about the best comment in the history of comments that feature slam poetry. I will seriously think about adding a category on my blog about the best comment in the poetry division. By the way, this is a great blog I just found, and he features best comments of the week (ahem, take note of this week’s). What a great idea. I wish it were mine. I think Peg’s comment would definitely be in the running on my blog this week. http://www.nailsbails.com/

        By the way, what’s up? I missed you! I see you have started blogging again so I need to get over there pronto!

      • March 23, 2012 8:47 pm

        I’m just posting every now and then and commenting a lot less. I did mention you in my Cinque Terre post (you were on vacation for that post).
        Glad you are back!

      • March 23, 2012 8:51 pm

        Aw, shucks! A shout-out that went unanswered! That is the worst! I will definitely read your new posts tonight. Thanks, WW.

      • March 23, 2012 8:56 pm

        It’s really okay – I’d much prefer that you spent your time cleaning up the stall after your son than reading my blog. :-) This comment is going to look a bit crazy for anyone who didn’t read about your trip.

      • March 23, 2012 9:04 pm

        You mean, when my son peed all over the Pizza Hut restroom wall and the floor and the toilet and my arms? (By the way, I swear I cleaned it up! With wet paper towels and everything!)

        There — no crazy here now.

      • March 24, 2012 11:41 am

        1) I wish all mothers were as conscientious as you about public rest rooms.
        2) I checked out nailsbails – what a hoot! And I loved your comment, and wishe I had thought about that too.
        3) How many have now checked thru your blog to mine to find out my sad tale of life in the big house?
        4) Will worrywart think less of me when she learns that Peg-o-leg is my handle on the yard? Thinking of running a series of posts about me and my b*tch on the inside…

      • March 24, 2012 12:34 pm

        1) I’m practically a saint when it comes to cleaning up my own messes in public places. Waiting tables and retail work teach you well in life.
        2) Ain’t he great?
        3) About 12 to 15. And that’s about how many emails I got from people wanting to know why you write under a mild mannered alias.
        4) Of course she won’t. She’s good people. She wants to adopt you now. You’ll be her new “project”.

  10. March 22, 2012 6:00 pm

    This is hilarious. Tip? Order pizza online! Haha.

    • March 23, 2012 9:15 pm

      Yeah, but that online thing hasn’t really stopped me from rambling here, has it? Worth a shot though.

  11. March 22, 2012 6:40 pm

    So are Pop Rocks made from Twinkie fluff? And is the Twinkie sponge cake the same stuff people pump into their attics for insulation?

    This is why your posts need to be more than 400 words long. Do you see how many questions I have?

    • March 23, 2012 9:18 pm

      For that very reason, I like to just nail them up to the sides of my house. Just whole Twinkies. My gas bills have never been lower and I think I’ve solved the energy crisis.

      Perhaps it was a bit unreasonable of me to think that anyone could write less than 1,000 words when it came to the topic of Pop Rocks. Pet Rocks, yes. Pop Rocks, no.

  12. Emily permalink
    March 22, 2012 6:50 pm

    I didn’t mind your “excessively wordy” posts, but I was a bit after your time, so some of your pop-culture references kind of went over my head. I have had Pop Rocks before, though, and I like them, but they’re not my favourite–I like Nerds better. True, Nerds don’t crackle and pop in your mouth, and they won’t make your head explode when mixed with Diet Coke, but they come in more flavours, and better flavours, and they have cute little cartoon characters all over the box. Damn, I want some Nerds now.

    • March 23, 2012 9:23 pm

      Whoa, whoa! Hold on there, Emily. I said “ridiculously wordy”. Who said anything about “excessively wordy”? Are you saying my wordiness is excessively verbose?

      Nerds and Pop Rocks — great comparison. And, yes, Nerds doesn’t have to come with the warning label.

      • Emily permalink
        March 23, 2012 10:34 pm

        Okay, okay–“excessively” and “ridiculously” are two different things. My bad, it was late at night. Anyway, on a more candy-related note, do you remember Warheads? Those things were the grossest candy ever–the entire premise was “see how long you can tolerate this excessively sour candy that tastes like vomit, or this excessively hot and spicy candy that could burn a hole through your stomach, and if you spit it out too soon, then you’re just not tough enough.” Of course, after about 30 seconds, the candy stopped being horrible, and tasted like regular fruit-or-cinnamon-flavoured hard candy, much like a Jolly Rancher or a cinnamon heart……which begs the question, why not just buy Jolly Ranchers or cinnamon hearts? I had enough trouble with bullies teasing me, without candy having a go at me too. But seriously, the first time I tried a Warhead, it was during morning recess in grade five or six, and I felt sick to my stomach for at least a few hours afterwards.

      • March 24, 2012 12:42 pm

        I think Warheads sound to be much like “Cry Baby” (aka “Tear Jerkers”) candy. I thought of it less as candy and more as a dare. Like swallowing a goldfish or sticking your tongue to a frozen pole. Yes, why not just buy something you’d actually enjoy! But then again, that’s assuming children make wise choices.

  13. russelllindsey permalink
    March 22, 2012 7:30 pm

    I need to write longer posts. Here’s the problem. I am so worried about going on and on and on that I stick to post that are simple, succinct.

    Oh, and Pop Rocks rock.

    Lindsey

  14. russelllindsey permalink
    March 22, 2012 7:31 pm

    Reblogged this on Ramblings of a Misguided Blonde and commented:
    Pop Rocks get me every time.

  15. March 22, 2012 8:20 pm

    I have never had a Pop Rock.

    I can hear the more than 400 words anyone who actually reads comments is saying right now about what a sorry life I’ve led. My candy consumption inventory is incomplete.

    • March 23, 2012 9:26 pm

      This comment was like Pop Rocks busting open my head. I need to start paying you for your comments, Elyse. I’ll give you a cut of what I make for this blog, how about that? Oh, about that cut of what I make for this blog…

      • March 24, 2012 5:49 am

        Well you should be highly paid for this wonderful blog. That way I’ll get my cut and maybe you’ll treat me to some Pop Rocks!

      • March 24, 2012 12:37 pm

        Oh, that’s right. You’ve never had Pop Rocks. You don’t know what they are. Well, since Pop Rocks is likely secret code for meth, this comment may be used against you in a court of law. I’m glad your husband is a lawyer.

  16. Tony permalink
    March 22, 2012 8:45 pm

    You know they have seasonal Pop Rocks? Candy Cane and Pumpkin flavors. But does anyone but me remember Space Dust and Cosmic Candy? (the Pop Rocks knockoff)

    http://mistertoast.blogspot.com/2005/12/space-dust-cosmic-candy.html

    • March 23, 2012 9:28 pm

      I thought I’d never heard of them initially, but immediately when I saw the packaging here I remembered seeing them. That weird turn-of-the-century celestial cartooning. By the way, the commentary on this blog post was hilarious — the part about how they had to change the name to Cosmic Candy because Space Dust was probably too close to Angel Dust. Funny.

    • Emily permalink
      March 23, 2012 10:36 pm

      Really? I’m from Canada, and I’ve only ever seen strawberry or blue raspberry-flavoured Pop Rocks, and MAYBE green apple and/or watermelon, on rare occasions. But, I’ve certainly never seen seasonal Pop Rocks. Besides, I think pumpkin-flavoured candy would be kind of gross, don’t you?

  17. Davis permalink
    March 22, 2012 10:43 pm

    I’m need to cut down on my wordiness, too. This is the last comment I’ll ever leave on your blog. Either this one or the next one will be the last. Or the one after that. Probably.

    • March 23, 2012 9:29 pm

      That’s okay. I won’t hold you to it if you decide to comment a few more dozen times on here. But I will go looking for you if you disappear.

  18. March 22, 2012 11:55 pm

    What happens if it takes you hours to write the 400 words? You can’t tell me you haven’t simply sat and stared at the computer screen willing those words into existence…

    • March 23, 2012 9:32 pm

      Actually, I can write an entire (1,000 word) blog post in about an hour. But then! But then I have to sit and edit and fact-check and wordsmith it for half an afternoon. It’s insane. It’s obsessive. If I had only 400 words or less to mess around with, surely I would have more time to scrape that film off the inside of my sink or something. You know, more important stuff.

      • March 23, 2012 11:06 pm

        I know what you mean. I don’t count words but I’ll take anywhere between 30 minutes to an hour to write a post and then spend another 30 minutes putting in the links and graphics, etc. Fortunately I’m writing about my only personal experiences so there’s usually not a lot of fact checking to be done :)

      • March 24, 2012 12:58 pm

        Yes, the more references I make to pop culture, the more fact-checking involved. You’re right that it is a whole lot easier to just write purely about a personal happening, which I do here sometimes. But I’m always worried someone will pop over and note that I mentioned seeing a movie in 3rd grade and then doing the math and figuring out that the movie wouldn’t have come out until I was in 5th grade. And then I’ll lose all credibility and will be yanked the title of 1980s Childhood Nostalgia Guru. I don’t have that title but I pretend I do.

  19. March 23, 2012 6:10 am

    I estimate a package of pop-rocks to be 400 rocks or less. Let me count: “A-one, a-two-whoooo, a-three….”

    • March 23, 2012 9:34 pm

      You are fantastic. I love how you bring it all around so it comes full circle. If you could someday find a way to work both Goonies and latchkey kids into one of your witty comments, I will declare you the tangential master.

      • March 24, 2012 6:26 am

        I don’t know why that popped into my head, an exploding owl.

      • March 24, 2012 12:38 pm

        I hate that owl. I wish no harm against any animal except that damn smug owl.

  20. March 24, 2012 5:16 pm

    Hey Angie – I hope you see this because I’ve just nominated you for a Versatile Blogger Award…

    http://thelastsongiheard.wordpress.com/2012/03/24/versatile-blogger-award/

    Like one of my other nominees, you’ve probably had bunches already but I nominated you for a good reason – I think you really deserve it :)

    • March 25, 2012 3:56 pm

      Thank you so much for this! It means a lot to me to be among your list.

  21. March 29, 2012 2:06 pm

    I’m the same way. I have so much to say! Unfortunately…people are lazy and do not want to read my hilarious and sparkling anecdotes on my daily life.
    -M

  22. April 1, 2012 1:38 am

    Blog Post – 400 words
    Comments – 4,000 words
    Laughter – infinite

    :D

    PS. I hate Pop Rocks. They make me want to puke. Just the sound of them makes my stomach curl and burns my ears.

    • April 3, 2012 10:44 am

      Aw shucks, thank you. Pop Rocks weren’t my favorite either. I always thought that eating Pop Rocks felt something like how it’d feel to ingest flesh-eating acid.

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