“I’m Too Sexy” And Other Entertaining Ways to Horrify Your Children

It’s been hot here lately. It’s not surprising; late August in south-central Kansas is always hot. Everybody here just takes it in stride. What else are you gonna do? It’s the weather.



Anyway, last Saturday the kids and I were sitting around the kitchen table eating brekkie, and VV Mike says, “Mom, it’s hot outside. I’m gonna take off my shirt.”

Not really sure why he felt the need to announce it, but his little proclamation triggered something in my brain, and I started singing,

“I’m too sexy for my shirt. Too sexy for my shirt. So sexy it hurts!”

All eyes at the kitchen table had turned to me, with looks that said, Mom’s gone off the deep end, and we’re watching it happen in real time. Why, cruel world? Why?

I stopped singing and said, “Right Said Fred? I’m Too Sexy?”

The kids glanced at each other, speechless, as if I’d just spoken to them in Klingon instead of English.

“It was a popular song when I was a kid,” I said, grabbing my phone. “Hang on.” A few seconds later I had this YouTube video up and running.

They watched in stunned silence.

“You thought that was cool?” WillyJ asked, his eyes begging me to say, No, honey. I didn’t like it. Everyone else did, but I didn’t. But I can’t lie to my kid, so I said,

“Yeah. I kinda still do. It has a catchy beat.”

VV Mike chimed in. “Do you know Vanilla Ice?”

Now it’s my turn to stare on in disbelief. “You know about Vanilla Ice?”

“Yeah. My teacher in school showed us. Can you find him?”

So I brought up this video.

Now VV Mike and I are dancing around the kitchen (and I’m proud to say I still know ALL the words) while Willy J is looking at us like aliens have taken over our bodies. Everything about his expression says I don’t know who you people are anymore.

At this point, I’m on a roll. I bring up this video:

And this one:

But the coup de grace was this one.

Willy J was literally rolling on the floor, holding his belly while he laughed. “Their pants!” he gasped. “They’re so puffy! Why are their pants so puffy?”

Apparently parachute pants aren’t going to make a comeback in this house.

What things from your childhood equally horrify and fascinate your offspring, nieces, and nephews? Comment and post links to the videos below. VIDEO PARRRRTAY!



That Full-Bellied Moon, She’s A-Shinin’ On Me


If you’ve ever been on I-70 west of Salina, Kansas after the sun has gone down, no doubt you’ve seen it. Planted in the middle of an enormous wind farm, a tiny, aged church basks in the light of its own cross, seeming to laugh at the darkness and the hundreds of solemn red lights that blink a slow rhythm on top of each windmill.

That stretch of road has an eerie, desolate feeling to it. After sunset it somehow manages to feel full and empty all at once – like ears that need to pop, or the way it feels to hide in a closet in the dark. When you’re crossing those miles under the shadows of giants you can’t see, a weird sort of anticipation begins to take hold, the kind of anticipation that’s looking for a release. And just when you feel like those red lights are as eternal as the stars above them, this little church with its cross that borderlines on being obscene comes out of nowhere and smacks you in the face.



My imagination got all manner of jacked up when we drove by it this summer, coming and going to Colorado. Now one of my favorite scenes in Hanna, Hanna, One-and-Two takes place in a tiny run-down church in the middle of a broken-down windfarm.

When I was writing that scene, That Moon Song by Gregory Alan Isakov was on perpetual repeat in my head. Quick question: When is it a good time to listen to Gregory Alan Isakov? Answer: Always. It’s always a good time to listen to Gregory Alan Isakov.

I cannot – cannot – wait to share Hanna, Hanna, One-and-Two with you.