Worst. Pet Shop. Ever.

Yesterday Victor and I took our nine-year-old to a pet shop to look at ferrets, because holding ferrets automatically makes your day brighter (both because ferrets are hysterical and also because they’re stinking up the pet shop and not your house).  But when we started to walk in I saw this note on the door:


Victor pointed out that maybe it wasn’t so bad if you got the front half of the hamster, but I’m fairly certain that the severed front end of hamster is going to be just as messy and leaky as a whole one.  Probably even more so.  Regardless, Hailey asked the clerk where they were keeping all the half-hamsters and was shown to a bin filled with completely whole hamsters where the clerk explained that “these are all of the half-off hamsters”.  Then Hailey whispered, “I don’t think these people know how fractions work.”

She’s so our child.


And in other news, it’s Sunday, which means its time for the weekly wrap-up:


What you missed in my shop (Named “Eight pounds of uncut cocaine” so that your credit card bill will be more interesting.):

This week on shit-I-didn’t-come-up-with-but-wish-I-did-because-it’s-kind-of-awesome:

This week’s wrap-up is brought to you by Bill Harte, author of Women Dress Like Sex, Men Dress Like Money: Everything You Need To Know About Marketing You Learning In Dating.    I’ve only read pieces of it, but the pieces I read were interesting and provocative.  I didn’t always agree with it (but I dress less like sex and more like a hobo, so I guess that’s to be expected) but it offers a fascinating marketing perspective and might give you info to really help your business.  You can check it out here.  It’s less than a cup of coffee and you can get the audiobook for free if you buy the ebook or paperback.

94 thoughts on “Worst. Pet Shop. Ever.

Read comments below or add one.

  1. i LOVE your “this is what i look like” tshirt. i cannot order it because they do not offer it in a size that would accomodate the wonder twins. (hint: i’m not pregnant.) i loathe that shops assume that people “only” come in sizes that are up to a 2X.

    this is NOT a comment about you, my dear. you are constrained by the people who run zazzle, and i fully realize that. hugs and hugs i adore your site, and YES omg your daughter is BRILLIANT. 😀

    (Easy fix. Click on the “See all styles” button on the right hand side of the page. Then click on “women.” There’s a bunch of different types, including a maternity shirt. 🙂 ~ Jenny)

  2. Fractions are hard. Not everyone gets them. That’s good for the hamsters though. I love those moments when my children prove that they completely belong to me. Those moments rock. 😀

  3. It is posts like this that tell me were we ever to meet in real life with our children it would be like a family reunion. This house is the home of sarcasm and wit.. in spades..

  4. This sounds like something @recurveemma would say! Glad to know that I am not the only one raising a kid that’s slightly…perfect!

  5. I got hamsters once. Two female ones so they wouldn’t mate. One was pregnant. I didn’t know it until she gave birth. She ate some of her babies. And then some of the babies were male but they mated before I could sex them. In the end, I just sold the lot back to the pet store. I didn’t want to be a part of an incestuous hamster breeding colony.

  6. Smart kid. I can’t go to humane societies or anywhere else that sells animals because I end up with one. Your strength shines through.

  7. I imagine her deadpan delivery, and smile. It’s wonderful to have a mini-me who gets your weirdness and shares some of their own.

  8. We cared for the class hamster over winter break. The teacher told me that they can die if you get them wet. Ours, a male with the unfortunate name of Cutie Pie, was one big urine sponge. I used scissors and my husband’s clippers to manscape him. Then I gave hime a gentle ball dry with the blow dryer. I made him swear never to speak of it again.

  9. Space hamsters are a better deal. Also, I like the link explaining what Twitter is like. It may have glossed over some of the negative aspects, but you’ll want to do that when explaining it to the uninitiated, lest ye scare them off preemptively.

  10. I have 3 ferrets. They are hysterical. And smelly. And expensive. And a lot more needy than one would think!

  11. Some people have trouble with fractions. We should show pity for the pet shop owner; imagine living like that….. (insert slow head shake here). On the bright side, your daughter is one smart cookie 😉

  12. Ah fractions.

    As a math teacher, I have to tell my students not to be afraid of fractions… fractions will break down before they will.

    (Most of the time this is true. Although students have a fraction breakdown is pretty sad.)

  13. My hubby agrees with Hailey. They don’t know how fractions work.

    And you made me laugh this morning. 🙂

  14. Maybe it’s do it yourself? You know like restaurants that let you condemn your own seafood. After all, you’d probably want a fresh half hamster, not a day old or something.

  15. And THAT is a moment for a mother to be proud of. My moments usually comes with the word “motherfucker”, but she’s a bit older than Hailey. Still, there’s nothing better than realizing you’ve passed your twisted sense of humor on to your offspring.

  16. I went to a Japanese restaurant, and there was a hand-lettered sign next to to the register.
    “Free baby hamsters – ask your waitress”

    All I could think of was “Stir-fried or steamed?”

  17. Now, that is a daughter to behold. Brilliant. Give her many compliments from the internet weirdoes her Mother … oh, well, someone else then … warned her about 🙂

  18. I had a traumatic experience with ferrets in my childhood — apparently I give the impression that I’m a tasty ferret snack. I tend to avoid them now (and by “avoid,” I really mean “cower in fear” or “run screaming into the night”). Congratulations on your Weblog award nomination! Here’s hoping you win — just don’t spend all 2014 pennies in one place!

  19. A friend of mine saw a sign that said “Bob’s Dog Obedience School and Taxidermy Shop.” And wrote a song about it. Also, cats disagree about which is the “best half” of the mouse. Our cats left us the front half, and a friend’s cat left the back half. As gifts, I guess.

  20. I must be on the same deranged wavelength as that pet store. Earlier today, before I saw this post, I wrote the following down in the “dialog ideas” section of my writing notebook:

    “Just for that, I’m cutting your Christmas bonus in half.”
    “So what? My Christmas bonus is always a $20 gift certificate to Sears.”
    “Yeah well, this year it’s a puppy dog.”

  21. I was frustrated that I couldn’t find a “Contact Me” button anywhere on your site, then I read today’s blog and realized this is the perfect place to give you what I wanted to, a link to these posters born in the deepest lunacy of parenthood. I don’t know how to do live links here, so here’s the raw URL: http://www.flickr.com/photos/nripperger/sets/72157623153953686/

    I love that your daughter’s got their number so early in life.

  22. I love your wit (and your daughter’s). Sorry, but I can’t imagine a lifetime long enough that I would ever read a book called, “Women dress like sex; men dress like money.”

  23. When I was about 6, I had to hamsters. One bit the other one’s head off and then playfully chewed through the bars of the cage, only to hide in our ductwork for a few months.
    I picked up the hamster in the cage, and his head fell half off (like a flip top).
    Yeah, never allowed to have hamsters again. Beware any % off hamsters.

  24. I don’t get how fractions work either, Hailey. I do wish I felt at least 50% better than I do right now, cause then I’d only be half sick. (Right? Did I do that right?)

  25. “And King Solomon said he would cut the hamster in half and the customer who loved them most would stand up and yell ‘NO’ and then he would know who would get the creature for si months until they would post it on craiglist because no one in the house wanted to clean the cage anymore .”

  26. Ha. You have a very witty daughter. She is adorable. I just wanted to say you are a very big encouragement to me. I re-read all your serious posts on my bad days and they help quite a bit. My unfortunate 1 year “anniversary” of depression was several months ago(I have an idea of the day I started feeling down every day). I’m having more good days but then I start sobbing like a faucet for no reason at all after about a week and then I have a bad week after that. And surprise,surprise; I’m only in middle school. My Mom and my dogs mean absolutely everything to me and thinking about life without them makes me more suicidal than usual. I’m told I act too mature by a number of people but they’d never guess this is why. Anyway, just wanted to let everyone know I’m praying for all of you because God is the biggest reason I’m still living. Hopefully, many years ahead to us all. <3

  27. Reminds me of the morning I walked in to the kitchen only to find the front half of a cute little baby bunny. I suppose Fezzik the Cat prefers the back half.

  28. Jen 21! That is hysterical! And disgusting! Makes me wish my son was still a teenager so I could send it to him and he would think I was so cool.

  29. We had a ferret named Janie for a number of years. Yes, she was hilarious and yes, she was a stinky weasel. As fun as she was…there will be no more mustelidae in this household because of the smell.
    Oh, related story…one of my friends who grew up in PA worked on a ferret farm. Her job was to play with baby ferrets and thump them on their little noses if they were too aggressive. Not making that up.

  30. Did you know that a group of ferrets is a “business”? Whoever came up with that must’ve not been too familiar with ferrets.

  31. Did you know that a group of ferrets is a “business”? Whoever came up with that must’ve not been too familiar with ferrets

  32. Your daughter is quick witted! In a few years, she’ll probably be blogging right alongside you. Well, maybe she’ll have her own desk.

  33. When my daughter was 13, she asked for a hamster and I let her get one. It was female and she named it Sugar because she was so sweet. Then she called me up one day while she was at my Mom’s and said Sugar had babies. Long story short too late, we ended up with 11 hamsters, including Sugar, living in the front room that we only used for company anyway. And 2 of them were homosexual. Live and let live. It was a crazy time in our lives.

  34. If I could get some kind of official guarantee that my future children would be as witty and awesome as yours, I would totes become a mother.

  35. I don’t plan on having kids, but if I do, I sure hope they turn out like Hailey: smart, funny and fond of Dr Who.

  36. Excellent response from Hailey…. I don’t think I could have ever thought of such brilliance. She’s right! The damn sign says 50% off! Not only are you a terrible pet store for selling half hamsters, you are also just terrible at life! Rough day for that place……

  37. Ha! I agree with Hailey, they don’t understand fractions at all! I think that if we had a hamster in my house, it would quickly become half a hamster… shakes head Then again, my 100 lb male pit bull has decided that all stuffed pink bunnies are his sole property, so perhaps bunnies are out as pets too? 😉

  38. The local pet store used to advertise ‘HUGE PUPPY SALE!!!’ My mom always wanted to go in and demand to see the huge puppies.

  39. Your daughter is awesome!!! FYI – ferrets are only stinky if they are on an incorrect diet, are given too many baths (yes, they have a stronger odor if you bath them more than once/month), if they are using inappropriate bedding (should have cloth hammocks, sleep sacks, baby blankets, etc.), or the bedding is not being laundered at least once/week. Pet store babies are especially stinky because of their environment and usually diet (Marshall Ferret food contains fish which makes the ferrets stinky). They aren’t for everyone 🙂

  40. Most seem to be commenting on some version of hamster fractions which really should have been about percentages since the sign didn’t say they were half off! Anyway I wanted to comment on your editor’s reply about editing her clients’ work. I laughed at your “cute baby” analogy. I think it illustrated why you are as popular as you are and how you can take a possibly traumatic experience and make it funny. Waiting for that second book; hope it is as cute but with all of its limbs!

  41. I love my ferrets. And they only smell when I get lazy about the cage..like now. But it is -30c here before windchill and my room is small, so there;s my excuse.

    That child is quick.

  42. Hailey just made my day! Did you and Victor have a proud parent moment????

    Patrick Rothfuss didn’t just review your book. He randomly drove around missing exits and going the wrong way to continue listening to the audio version! He’s a fan. Squueeee! So happy for you.

  43. My husband gets entirely too much joy out of signs that say, “Bras half off”. Sigh…

  44. Yeah for smart ass kids! Hailey is great, just like Momma! It always makes you so proud, doesn’t it? A bunch of us were watching A Christmas Story and someone wanted to know why Ralphie always shot the bad guys in the butt with his Red Rider bb gun and my daughter quickly said ” because he’s a crack shot” ! Brought a tear to my eye!

  45. I suppose you could cut the hamsters in half on a cell-by-cell (or even molecule-by-molecule) basis. If you do it just right (and fast enough), you could end up with two half-size still-living hamsters.

  46. She’s right, but fractions are hard. I’m sure we can blame common core somehow.

  47. This. This makes me feel like an ok Mom, because that is totally something one of my monsters would say!! Yay for great kids who get it!

  48. Thanks dear, I love your blog ! You have provided a good info through this blog about a pet. I’ve learned more Titan and Milo through this blog.
    Really your your blog is top notch and very classy.
    Many thanks again for sharing.

  49. Of course she’s your child, Jenny… the universe would never let your kick-ass bloodline run out. The world needs more Lawsons to balance out the damage done by the Kardashians.

  50. Too funny! My daughter asked once, when I told her she’s 1/4 Polish (I’m half, mom’s all Polish), if she’d be “more Polish” when she got bigger? 😉

  51. I want a left half. Not the right. Right is wrong. Left is right. 🙂

  52. Isn’t taxidermy kind of like fractions though? You get the outside half of the animal, but not the inside half?

  53. bloggess, you’re the only blog i can bring myself to actually follow. you’re too witty!

    hey yall, i run a blog about how to survive your twenties. finances, fashion, lifestyle, fitness. etc.
    check me out at

  54. I love your blog, so I’m not going to get all upset with you for denigrating ferrets. My weaselly girls are troublesome little monsters, and playing with them is always the best part of my day. Especially when they try to grab my hand and pull me under the couch into their secret hidey-hole stash of stuff they stole from me. And I love their musky, animal stink – it’s the best stink in the world. Also, your daughter is a funny kid. If you loved her, you’d buy her a couple of ferrets.

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