Sunday, June 28, 2009

Scrapmaster J - or - Scrap Booking Lingo Gone Mad

As I write this post, there are thousands upon thousands of men across this great land scratching their heads and peering into their nearly empty wallets with one question in mind:

"How the heck can paper and glue cost so much?"

Men. Grab your favorite drink (having a beer right now folks!) and sit down. I'm going to debunk the scrap booking phenomenon for you right here. As the husband of a scrap booking business owner, I have been exposed to the secret side of scrap booking. What I will reveal here may put me in mortal danger; however, the truth must come out!

The answer to the above question is, "Paper and glue do not cost that much!" Well, unless the scrap booker buys them in packs of 25 contained in boxes large enough to hurt your back and fill up a small U-haul - but hey, my wife sells some of it!

You see, men, the expenses only begin with paper and glue. You can make a pretty decent looking page by taking your favorite picture (look! this is the one where Uncle Jack got naked and re-enacted the entire first act of "Cat On A Hot Tin Roof" at Jenny's tenth birthday party!), then gluing it to a colorful piece of pattern paper. This, however, is just how the scrap booking retail industry gets your lovely lady started.

It is similar to drugs. First, it's just a piece of paper (this would be like a small hit from a joint if you will). Next, it would really spice things up if there were just some ribbon and an alpha or two (yes - this is like her first snort of the hard stuff). Finally, your den or home office begins to slowly resemble the local scrapbook shop and dinner on the table may or may not occur after "just one more layout!" This is full fledged addiction my man!

So, you ask, what can we do about it? How can we slow it down? What the hell is a "Thicker" and can it be used to harm me during an argument?

The first step is... get ready because this is hard... understanding! Several of you just walked away, I know... the truth hurts.

Remember that power saw she let you buy last year? You know, the one with the laser guided accuracy, compass, and turbo-charged four-wheel drive auto air coolant driven blade guard? To you, that was a necessary item. After all - you were meaning to build that tree-house! Let me tell you what that same purchase meant to your lovely lady:

25 sheets of pattern paper (two-sided)
25 sheets of Bazzill (not the flat stuff - oh no! - textured only)
A new Cricut cartridge (this has nothing to do with bugs)
Some scissors (the kids stole hers and made them dull cutting plastic cans. Again)
Stickles (lots of stickles!)
Two of my wife's kits (Please!?)

Our power tools can fell large trees, build small buildings, and fix a stopped toilet (hey - that sucker wasn't stuck after I cut it out of the floor with my jig!). Their tools can save a memory forever. Who wins? If you just said "We do!" ... the couch is open tonight sir.

No - the best away to "battle" this addiction is to learn more about it. I promise - you don't have to actually make anything (unless it's out of wood), but you will be a hero if you learn some of the lingo. I am no expert, but I assure you, learn some of the following and use the terminology when confronted with the scrap booking addicted lady and you will earn points:

1. First, when you are asked if you think "this layout is missing something" or, the dreaded, "does this layout look okay" be warned!!!! This is 2nd only to "do I look fat in this dress," which has killed many men! Here are some safe, and perhaps impressive, responses:

a. I like the texture of the alphas, it blends with the pattern paper to make the picture stand out! WARNING: An "Alpha" as used above is a letter of some sort - not something in camouflage with a gun!!! If you don't see any, just talk about the paper matching the pictures and the colors being great... then watch for the incredulous look. Don't move! Eventually she will give you a hug. Breath now.

2. Know that a rub-on is NOT something related to the bedroom. These are items "rubbed onto" the paper to look hand inked or drawn. However... if you are astute to notice her rub-on in a layout, you are closer to the bedroom than the couch.

3. It's not "stickers" (as in - your five year old daughter is using stickers -how cute) but "stickles" (as in - the artist is using stickles to brighten, outline, or otherwise rev up her creation). Don't say stickers or you will be stuckled... on the couch.

4. Pattern Paper is the thin stuff with all the art. Card stock is the thick stuff that is usually all one color. The couch is where you sleep if you call it "just paper," "thick paper," or "too expensive!"

5. This is a big one: A Crop is where a group of addicts, er um... scrap bookers, gather together to share ideas, create together, and drink. Some of the terms you will hear flying around will include:

a. Scrap Lift - this is using somebody else's layout or design to create your own - not stealing supplies or anything involving a plastic surgeon.

b. Punch - these nifty little things actually cut patterns into paper, like a hole punch, but with flare. This is also what you get if you say something like "couldn't you just do that with scissors?" - although I wouldn't know

c. RAK - this stands for Random Act of Kindness. Although we don't have a clue why, your spouse will give away some perfectly good items to a complete stranger for no reason at all during a crop. This is common. My only advice is lock up your power tools during a Crop just in case.

Finally, I have the following sage advice. Never, ever, ever call it any of the following:

Crap booking
That Craft Thing
Too Expensive
A Wast of Money
Playing Around

Yes: that would be couch, couch, couch, couch, and couch.

No - if you have a lady addicted to scrapping, just be supportive. Tell her how much you appreciate her creatively storing your family memories. Walk up to her while she is scrapping, peek of her shoulder, and softly whisper in her ear: "Wow... I love watching you do that," as though she were on the beach rubbing in lotion.

This will not only increase the chances of you getting that new work-bench with automatic grip guides, but you just might end up winning the best dude award and other benefits.

PS: Tell her to buy another kit from Von: I have my eye on that work-bench too buddy.


Joyce said...

Frank...You totally understand!!!!!!!

You are so funny!!!

Wanita said...

OMG! This has to be the best post yet! My DH quit complaining when he got involved in a hobby ALMOST as expensive although I'm about 6 years ahead of him in the spending

PS...I have more kits on order ;)

donnacr said...

By George , I think he has got it ! LOL ! Of course , I see you also may have an agenda at the end of the day ! Tell Von to keep putting out these awesome kits and you will have a new toy before long !

nomorelittlemonkeys said...

Frank, I am definitely going to have my DH read this!!! You never cease to crack me up!

Sandra said...

bwahahahaha...good one!

Lisa J. said...

WOW Admin!!! This is hilarious! Now if I could just get my hubby to see.

Liway said... crack me up!! I am definitely showing this one to hubby...maybe one day he'll "get it" too!!

SnapWhiz said...

This was too hilarious! I'm going to see that my hubby reads this. He is extremely supportive of my habit, oh I meant hobby. : )

I'm excited to get my first kit and am looking forward to many many more in my future!