Friday, June 29, 2012

I have often said that if you want to know about someone’s character (their true nature), you have to watch them at the grocery store -- when they think no one is looking.

I am a people watcher. And, in my mind, there is nothing more telling about a person’s character than when I watch them roaming around my local market. It’s in this tiny slice of food-dom that humanity converges into some kind of eerie who-can-be-the-rudest festival, where the biggest asshole wins.

I watch the woman silently tapping her foot and rolling her eyes as the elderly lady in front of her tries to carefully select her produce. I don’t blame the elderly lady, she’s on a fixed income after all. But home girl with the Coach handbag only cares about herself.

I see the mom feeling her kids grapes in the store that she just picked up, even though you are charged for grapes by the pound. It’s dishonest and she’s “stealing” because she is unprepared. It’s maddening.

I watch people count their items in the 10 items or less lane, see that they have 14 items, but slip through anyway. They are after all, “special”. The rules don’t apply to them.

I observe the folks who discard their cart, leaving it solidly in the middle of a parking space. You know, because the rules don’t apply to them either. Why should they have to pick up after themselves?

Truly, I could go on for days about the immoral behavior I observe while watching my fellow man (and woman) at the market. But, instead, I’d rather tell you how I deal with it.

When I come across an old woman, carefully selected her fruit or vegetables, I volunteer to help her, instead of greeting her caution with heavy sighs. I suggest things she could get in order for her to get the most for her money. I’ve actually had some lovely conversations this way.

I smile and nod at the mother who is feeding her kids grapes, raising an eyebrow in silence, hoping that one day she learns to behave better.

I am that asshole who says something when I’m behind that person who has the 14 items in the 10 items or less line. Usually they don’t like it, but that’s not my problem. You see, I follow the rules. In fact, after having done this on several occasions, many a haggard and tired clerk will usually relish me with praise. One person’s asshole can be another’s hero.

When I see someone who can’t be bothered with putting their cart back, I do it for them. And I hope they see me do it too. Perhaps if they do, they might have a little bit more sympathy for the kid who has to run around a parking lot in over 100 degree weather, collecting their mess.

I always smile at the random strangers I see in the market. I use the words, “Please, thank you, excuse me and I’m sorry,” religiously. Not because I want other people to notice, but because it’s the right thing to do.

Because if you want to change the world, you have to start with one person at a time, especially when you think no one else is watching. Because they are.
Posted by Shauna Zamarripa On 3:00 PM No comments READ FULL POST

Thursday, June 28, 2012

For those of you who don’t know, I am an avid fan of “The Glee Project” on Oxygen. Say what you will about Ryan Murphy, the man knows how to put out some inspirational, heart-string-pulling television. 

The premise of the show is simple: a group of extremely talented kids compete to win a spot on the hit show “Glee”. Using a series of weekly “themes”, the kids have to showcase what they can do, not only with their voices, but with their personalities as well. In my mind, the show provides a great exploration into the human mind, and the human heart. 

This last week, the theme was vulnerability. And the theme got me to thinking about the word quite intently. 

I am nothing if not confident. I am highly opinionated and I have no problem sharing my opinion loudly and often. The funny thing is, many folks mistake my confidence for my being full of myself. I’m not. – Not that I need to justify myself to you, anyway. In truth, a more humble, kind person you will never meet, but that’s only if I deem you worthy. (Few are, by the way.)

With that said, I exude confidence because I am confident in how I carry myself, how I speak and because I am supremely confident in what I say. No, that doesn’t mean I’m always right, all knowing or think that I am better than anyone else. In fact, I am quite the opposite. I’m human, I’m flawed, I’m imperfect and I’m vulnerable. 

A more awkward person at a party you will never meet. I am comfortable in my own skin, sure, but I am also vulnerable and self-conscious. Just like everyone else. Just like you, in fact.
My confidence isn’t a mask to hide my vulnerability, but my confidence is a part of my vulnerability. For it is often in our weakest moments that we find strength. 

Go ahead and ponder on that for a while.
Posted by Shauna Zamarripa On 3:00 PM No comments READ FULL POST

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Honestly? I just don’t get it. People who get offended by something as trivial as vulgar language simply baffles my synapses.

By and large, my obvious confusion on the issue probably has something to do with the fact that I pride myself on finding new and exciting uses for the f-word on a consistent basis.

For instance:
What in the hot fuck is that?
Oh mother of fuck.
What kind of fuckery do you think you are doing?
You are a complete and utter fucktard.
Holy fuck knuckles!
Fuck that fucking fuck.

And on and on it goes. In fact, one of the reasons I enjoy watching Dexter (extra points if you are a fan) so much is that Deb (Dexter’s foul mouthed sister) is usually my inspiration for new and innovative uses of what is undeniably one of my favorite words in the English language. The woman can weave the f-word into a sentence with musical precision.

But I digress
I’ve been in the business world all of my life, quite literally. Do you oh-so-sensitive folk know what happens in the business world? People cuss. And people cuss frequently, with intent. To hell with your delicate sensibilities. (Sh)It happens.

Are there better ways one could express themselves? I’m sure there are, but I simply choose not to use them. It’s my first amendment right after all, and it doesn’t bother me. Then again, it certainly shouldn’t bother you either.

And why not?
Getting offended because someone else is cursing makes about as much sense as getting your panties in a wad because someone else drinking, when you don’t drink. Truly, you just need to get over it, because people are free to make their own choices, their own mistakes and do their own thing.

In my not so humble opinion
It’s been my experience that people who get offended by curse words are also the types of folks who have way too much time on their hands. They are the types of people who get offended by every tiny, trivial meaningless thing available to them. I sincerely believe that these folks wake up with every intention (even if it is only subconsciously) to get offended about something...anything. 

And you know what they say about trouble, if you go looking for it, it isn’t hard to find. The same is true of getting offended. These people are the hoi polloi who get uppity about a wide range of bullshit that just doesn’t matter in the end.

Instead, I dare you to get offended about something that DOES matter. Get offended about our national debt; get riled up about your rights being silently stripped away from you by unscrupulous D.C. politicians. Get upset that punishments for child molesters aren’t severe enough. Get rubbed the wrong way about inflation. Get uppity about how many kids in your community go hungry each day. Or tie yourself in a knot over the simple fact that you’re not helping make the world a better place because you are too busy sitting on your laurels and being an asshole.

What I'm getting at here is a simple, concise piece of advice: Get offended by something that fucking matters for a change. Because curse words aren’t it.

Do you have a fucking problem with that?
Posted by Shauna Zamarripa On 3:00 PM 5 comments READ FULL POST

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

I’m not going to lie. When the guilty verdict hit the airwaves for Jerry Sandusky last Friday, I was nothing short of outright elated. In fact, it actually restored my faith in the justice system after what I think was its complete failure in the Casey Anthony trial not long ago. Indeed, sometimes, the guilty are punished. But are they punished strongly enough?

I don’t think they are.

In fact, I’m going to be so bold as to say that child predators deserve the death penalty. Yes, I said it.

Coming off the heels of a case in Shiner Texas, where a father beat his 5-year-old’s rapist to death with his bear hands, and wasn’t convicted for doing so, I’d (quite frankly) like to see more cases end this way.

No, not because I’m blood thirsty, but because I believe that anyone who sexually abuses a child is so broken, so vile and so profoundly evil that they should be treated like rabid dogs. They need to be put down.

Sure, I’ve heard the arguments for chemical castration. While that might solve the physicality part of the equation, it does nothing for the mental part of the equation. And the truth is, sexual abuse is more mental than it is physical.

How do I know this? I was a victim of sexual abuse. From the age of 4 to 11, my father was a cruel abuser. However, I say, “was” with intent. It doesn’t define me. It’s part of my past. I don’t need your sympathy or your pity, nor do I want it. I disclose this to you because I know more about sexual abusers than your run-of-the-mill writer might.

However, between my father and his consortium of other abusive friends, my tale is one that puts me in a unique position to talk about child predators. I knew five of them, and I knew five of them well.

All five of these men were cut from the same cloth. They were evil, twisted and downright awful. They had no remorse, no compassion and no sense of right and wrong. They were all, in effect, rabid dogs who needed to be put down.

There is no rehabilitating these people. There is no “fixing” something that is that inherently broken. For them, there is only one answer: Put them down like the sick, rabid animals they are. And that, in essence, is the perfect penalty for such a heinous crime. At least, in my not so humble opinion.

What are your thoughts about punishments for child predators?
Posted by Shauna Zamarripa On 12:09 PM No comments READ FULL POST

Monday, June 25, 2012

Every so often, I go through a phase when I decide that I want to play nice with the other kids in the sandbox. I bust out my intellectual toolkit and go to town, gently trying to explain my point of view and have a productive conversation. Not anymore though. Now? I’m over it.

You can’t fix stupid.
Of course I hold my own opinions in high esteem. So do you. Opinions are born and bred out of research and complex thinking, nurtured (hopefully) by sound logic and reason, leading you to an ultimate conclusion on everything from the unfortunate byproducts of free speech to whether or not speedos are sexy – they aren’t, by the way. Moreover, while I do enjoy listening to different sides of any (and all) issues, and while I do take some differing opinions into account, I have concluded that some folks can’t debate for crap and have instead been thoroughly infused with the asshole gene.

Am I just THAT much of a B----?
Maybe. Or maybe I’m just tired of people who feel like they “know” me and what I’m all about because they read a few snippets I posted on Facebook or Twitter. Maybe I’m just fed up with the perception argument. Because even though your precious perception might be “reality”, it remains YOUR reality, not mine. So don’t shove your crappy reality down my throat. Many thanks.

Getting back to my point
This is why I’m going back to no more Mrs. Nice Guy. I’m done with giving even handed opinions and arguments to people that are clearly not worth the time it requires to do so. But even more than that, I’m going back to the roots of being true to me. To expressing my feelings the way I want to … honestly and without holding back. Because, if I’m not true to my own thoughts and feelings, what’s the point?

The bottom line is that I’m like opera. You’re either gonna love me or hate me, but that won’t stop me from singing my song.

Posted by Shauna Zamarripa On 3:00 PM No comments READ FULL POST

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Lately, people by and large are either too enthralled with religious evangelical enthusiasm or are seduced into apathy. They maintain the antiquated idea that the status quo of posting cute photos of kittens and puppies and babies on Facebook while sharing recipes and ho-hum drama-filled evenings out with frenimes as being more important than knowing what is going on with the state of our nation. To me, that that is nothing more than ignorance and stupidity wrapped in absurdity. 

Because if you don’t care about what’s going on, if you don’t give voice to it, if you do nothing merely because it doesn’t affect your day-to-day humdrum existence, you are part of the problem, not part of the solution.

Talk about it. Get involved. DO something.
Posted by Shauna Zamarripa On 9:57 AM No comments READ FULL POST

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Dealing with stupid people, for me, is a lot like what hunting is for other folks. If it’s a sport, the other team certainly doesn’t know they are playing.

Every so often, I have to deal with someone who is clearly an idiot. And, normally, since I enjoy the obvious benefit of working from home as opposed to actually having to deal with people day in and day out, that interaction occurs on Facebook. Today has been no exception.

I confess. I don’t like stupid people. I don’t like people who twist my words so that they can push their own agenda, and I definitely don’t like people who can’t seem to muster up enough brain power to think outside of the box and read in-between the lines. If your only interpretation of something can be accomplished in it’s most literal sense, you have a reading comprehension problem. And THAT problem, isn’t mine.

I often say, I am 100% responsible for what I say and how I say it. I, however, am NOT responsible for how you misinterpret it, manipulate it or twist it. Fair enough?

With that said, I think it’s time for a long overdue purge of my “friends” list. You see, there are a handful of people that I have “kept around” for absolutely no good reason at all. I don’t “like” these people (and that’s okay, not everyone has to like me either -- such is the way of things), but I kept them around nonetheless. Yet, with each and every overly contrived status update that they profess, pulling an overnight 180 to reinvent themselves into pretending to be both positive and being ultra-religious (when, in fact, these folks are the worst hypocrites on the planet), only serves to makes my blood boil. These folks pretend to be something they are not, when, in private are actually some of the worst folks I have ever had the displeasure of conversing with.

You see, even more than I dislike stupid people, I really, truly hate liars.
Posted by Shauna Zamarripa On 9:51 AM No comments READ FULL POST

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Recently I posted a status update:

When someone tells you that you are not enough, you have two choices:

1. Lay down and quit.
2. Be better.
Personally? Option #2 is the only one I acknowledge.

Why did I post this? I posted this because I sincerely and truly believe that all criticism is a valuable tool. Allow me to explain.

There are two types of criticism:
The Other Kind

The first is valuable. In fact, it is valuable beyond measure. Without constructive criticism, you would never learn, never grow, never push beyond the limits of your self-imposed shackles. Not everything can be warm, fuzzy roses all the time. Generally, such invaluable constructive criticism is given to you by two kinds of people:

1. Your dearest friends – who are never afraid to tell you when you are acting like an ass.
2. Someone who does something better than you.

Separate and define which one is giving you the criticism, listen, and become better. It’s that simple.

The second type of criticism is one that people use as a crutch when they are jealous, out of sorts, don’t like you because they believe you should be more like them or simply by someone who is a complete and utter douche nozzle. And while the second kind of criticism shouldn’t get you riled up or make you feel badly about yourself, it still presents you with an amazing opportunity to learn and grow -- even if that means learning nothing more than how to tell someone to go fuck themselves.

All criticism matters and all censure is useful, regardless of where it comes from. Take it on the chin and use it as opportunity to be a better person and move forward, but not because of the criticism itself, but because you actually learned how to handle it like a pro.
Posted by Shauna Zamarripa On 12:11 PM No comments READ FULL POST

Monday, June 11, 2012

Monday. It is one of the few days of the week that comes with a variety of groans, gripes whining, growls, screeches, grumbling, moans, whimpers, sighs, bellyaching, complaints, grievances, protests and downright cry babying. However, I don’t share the garden-variety disdain for the opening day of the workweek. In fact, I love Mondays -- and I’m about to tell you why. 

Setting the Tone
Mondays set the tone for the rest of my week. For instance, the more I accomplish on Monday and the more productive I force myself to be, the easier it is for me to carry that torch throughout the rest of the week. My workouts feel somehow easier, my workload seems somewhat less daunting, my entire week seems to flow with ease and grace. I find that I am less likely to get behind on things, I don’t have to worry about what I didn’t get done and I am just all around happier and more jovial. Mondays, as they are, set the tone for my entire week. 

But That Isn’t Even What I Like Best About Mondays
Indeed, it isn’t. What I like best about this day is that while it sets the tone for the rest of my week, I’m in complete control of how (and when) that tone is set. And so are you. 

Set the right tone for your workweek in the right way each Monday, and the rest of your week will be a piece of cake. Honest.
Posted by Shauna Zamarripa On 4:09 PM No comments READ FULL POST

Saturday, June 9, 2012

A friend of mine forwarded this to me in an email. It is beautiful, succinct and simple, as the best plans are. And before the liberal hate wagon begins their tirade about the disabled, we aren't talking about that here, we are talking about ABLE BODIED men and women who have nothing but excuses in their path. Now that we are clear...please, read on. 

What you have to remember it was NOT the recipients of food stamps
that lobbied congress for food stamps. It was the big chain food
companies and the politicians who dance with the ones who BRUNG--UM.
"Follow the money"



Put me in charge of food stamps. I'd get rid of Lone Star cards; no
cash for Ding Dongs or Ho Ho's, just money for 50-pound bags of rice
and beans, blocks of cheese and all the powdered milk you can haul
away. If you want steak and frozen pizza, then get a job.

Put me in charge of Medicaid. The first thing I'd do is to get women
Norplant birth control implants or tubal legations. Then, we'll test
recipients for drugs, alcohol, and nicotine. If you want to reproduce
or use drugs, alcohol, or smoke, then get a job..

Put me in charge of government housing. Ever live in a military barracks?

You will maintain our property in a clean and good state of repair.
Your home" will be subject to inspections anytime and possessions will
be inventoried. If you want a plasma TV or Xbox 360, then get a job
and your own place.

In addition, you will either present a check stub from a job each week
or you will report to a "government" job. It may be cleaning the
roadways of trash, painting and repairing public housing, whatever we
find for you. We will sell your 22 inch rims and low profile tires and
your blasting stereo and speakers and put that money toward the
"common good.."

Before you write that I've violated someone's rights, realize that all
of the above is voluntary. If you want our money, accept our rules.
Before you say that this would be "demeaning" and ruin their "self
esteem," consider that it wasn't that long ago that taking someone
else's money for doing absolutely nothing was demeaning and lowered
self esteem.

If we are expected to pay for other people's mistakes we should at
least attempt to make them learn from their bad choices. The current
system rewards them for continuing to make bad choices.

AND while you are on Gov't subsistence, you no longer can VOTE! Yes,
that is correct. For you to vote would be a conflict of interest. You
will voluntarily remove yourself from voting while you are receiving a
Gov't welfare check. If you want to vote, then get a job.

Liberalism is embarrassed by success and prosperity because independent and free people do not need liberals - and above all liberals need to be needed. Otherwise they would have to find real work instead of careers in politics, entertainment, journalism and class warfare -- the only kind of war in which they really believe.
Posted by Shauna Zamarripa On 4:38 PM No comments READ FULL POST

Friday, June 8, 2012

Unless you have been living under a rock, you have probably seen (and weighed in on) the great human Barcode debate. Well, in case you were wondering, here’s my weigh in.

Barcoding human beings?
Seriously people, when is it going to end? The last time people were bar coded, a Holocaust happened. This is not a good thing. No way, no how. And no, I have little to no interest in hearing from overzealous parents about how micro chipping your tot would keep them safe. It won’t. The only thing that would keep your kid safe is if you keep them indoors all their lives and put them in a bubble. Get over it.

What is happening to privacy, to civil liberties and to speaking out against “Big Brother” or “The Man”? How on EARTH can the masses spin this as an okay thing? An appropriate thing? The government already tried to microchip DOD employees and they said, “No.” Why? Because those working for “The Man” can already clearly see where this is headed and are fully aware of the potential dread and devastation something like this can cause in the long term. 

So, I ask you: Where have all my critical thinkers gone? Because we could really use you right about now...
Posted by Shauna Zamarripa On 3:47 PM No comments READ FULL POST

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

And not for the reasons you might think. No, this is not another support stream in the tsunami of online sentiment about stamping out bullying. Because that is never going to happen. Bullying is bullshit because you (yes, you) are pansifying your children, disabling them from being able to fend off a bully in the first place. The parents of bullies might not be doing their jobs, but you panderers of pussification are falling down on yours too. 

Bullies are made at home…and they always will be
Hate is home-grown. Sometimes bullies are made because they are taught hatred from adults. What are we going to do? Stamp out freedom of speech? Let’s get real here. You don’t know what’s being said in little Tommy’s home, and it’s none of your business. Hate, ignorance, violence and bullying will always be around as long as human beings are alive. We can punish, we can discipline, but we also need to be realistic. 

Of course, there are also the home grown bullies who are bullied themselves….so targeting them makes sense, right? I mean, it always makes sense to make kids who are already emotionally crippled targets of social outrage, right? 

Come on. That is no way to fix a problem.

The trick to parenting is having conversations with your kids about bullies. To be proactive. To teach them how to handle themselves in the event that they are being bullied. Then, and only then will you outspoken masses get what you want … well, sort of. 

Because, the bottom line is that bullying (and bullies) are never going to go away. So, keep dreaming, but at least be proactive with your visions of ponies and rainbows and take steps to educate your kids about bullying as opposed to whining, griping and signing meaningless online petitions that are nothing more than tigers without teeth.  
Posted by Shauna Zamarripa On 3:34 PM No comments READ FULL POST

Monday, June 4, 2012

I don’t mean this in a catty, mean or spiteful way. My friends are simply better than your friends. Most women have these snide, tit for tat type of relationships where one gal in the group is secretly jealous of the other, or someone secretly hates someone else. Not us. Not ever. We have a formidable, magical and incredible, unbreakable bond. 

Our little gang even has a name: The Bored Room

In the Bored Room, we share everything. And by everything, I mean EVERYTHING. Sadness, triumph, heartache, joy, sickness, health … nothing is off limits with us, and that is the way we like it. How we stumbled upon this magical dynamic I’ve no clue, but we did, and I’m not going to question it. So, without further ado, let me introduce you to my stunningly wonderful cast of characters. 
First, there’s Angela, my little spit fire, my sock gnome. She has a huge smile and an ever bigger heart. How did we meet? Well, one day, I was unloading my dryer, looking for missing socks and I found her. Okay, I’m kidding, but she really is that little. However, even standing at a formidable 4’11”, this woman packs a whollop – in a good way. She is my friend, my confidant, my trustworthy emissary of mayhem, and I adore her. 

Then, there’s Patty, my rock, my sister from another mister. She is even more beautiful on the inside than she is on the outside. A more genuine, down to earth person you will never meet. Oftentimes we have to tell one another to stay out of the other’s head – that is how much we think alike (scary isn’t it?) Our initial bond was formed over a status update about anger, three legged cats and turds. – Don’t ask. One day, we plan to move into a huge house together and have a gazillion cats. She is someone I have had many late night chats with over wine and zombie killing – and there is no one on this earth I’d rather bond with over wine and zombies than this girl. 


And then there is Nitsa, my stunner, my model and my NitWit. She is hands down one of the most loving people I have ever known. Crazy, funny, zany and smart as all get out, she keeps me on my toes. We can talk about anything and nothing and be perfectly content. I have really never known anyone quite like her. There is only one, and I like it that way. Somehow we connected over crazy and insane midnight Facebook chats. And, don’t tell her (because it will go straight to her head), but I totally love this girl.


Darlene is our Ma and easily the wisest of us all. Darlene has an infections, boisterous laugh, and even though she does love her bling, she doesn’t need it, because she sparkles all on her own. She is a caretaker, a giver and easily one of the most thoughtful and caring people I have ever met. And boy oh boy can she dance the night away like no one’s business. I don’t know how she does it, but she can kick my butt under the table. I treasure my Ma. 


And, of course, there is Michelle. Michelle was late to the party, by way of Patty, but we were all glad she showed up. Patty and Michelle had been friends for a couple of decades an when we added Michelle into the mix, she was just like one of us. She fit. She was our missing puzzle piece. Funny, understanding and charismatic, I can even overlook the fact that she’s a liberal – well, sort of a liberal. And the woman can cut some bad ass hair. And, just like the rest of my wonderful friends, a beautiful person inside and out. 


So yes, my friends ARE better than your friends, but I’d like to think I earned them through blood, sweat, tears and years of heartache and sorrow. Many people will go their entire lives without relationships like the one we have forged, and I truly feel sorry for those people, because without great friends, you are missing out on life and all of the wonders in it. I’m thankful that I’m not missing out on a thing anymore. I have quorum in my life and in my spirit. Who can possibly ask for more than that?
Posted by Shauna Zamarripa On 3:27 PM No comments READ FULL POST
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    Shauna made her mark in blogging starting in 2008 and has been on the front page of major publications such as Yahoo!,, MSN Money, CNN Money and more. Her finance and real estate expertise are world renowned and free to the average user. Shauna also runs a marketing consulting company and is the team lead for one of the largest teams in San Antonio, TX - Rockstar Agents and RE/MAX North. 


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