NaNoWriMo Success Tip # 2: Focus On Your One-Inch Picture Frame

bird-by-birdOne of the most stellar bits of writing advice I’ve ever read was dispensed by Anne Lamott, the author of writing classic, Bird by Bird. Not only does Lamott give you “permission to write crap,” she also gives great brainstorming advice such as:

  • “Keep a one-inch picture frame on your desk to remind yourself that for each moment, you only have to write as much as you can see through a one-inch picture frame.”
  • In other words, when a whole project is overwhelming, break it into little pieces or as she says, “don’t try to eat the elephant in one sitting.”

I think of that one-inch picture frame all the time.

Maybe it’s because I’m a writer, but I’m always looking for examples of “big message” in a little space.

My Hubs is a master of this.

The first time he did it was about six weeks after we met. We were on the phone, planning a date, and he said, “Don’t you have RWA this weekend?”

One sentence. . .six little words. . .and I knew he was a keeper. I knew this guy was tuned into me. When I’d said, “The second Saturday of the month is my writers’ meeting,” he not only listened, he put it on his calendar. That was the moment I knew, I was a goner.

That’s what I mean by a one-inch picture frame. You don’t have time to read Bird By Bird this month, but you can still use the trick.

Focus on your quick one inch picture frame when you’re stuck.

How can you quickly show, rather than tell? What small plot problem can you solve today. What little gesture says “I love you” to you? Work it all into your novel!

And if you’re wondering whether you really belong on this Crazy Writer Bus, take a second to read Laura Drake’s hilarious post, You Know You’re a Writer If . . .

Happy writing, y’all…
~ Jenny

p.s. Here’s yesterday’s NaNoWriMowhat to do when you’re stuck” tip.

Posted in Inspiration, NaNoWriMo | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments

Day 1 of NaNoWriMo: Are You Writing With Abandon?


Last weekend I attended the Writer’s Digest Novel Writing Conference in Los Angeles. It was stupendous (and about 20 other sublime adjectives), chock-full of great people and inspiration. There was a NaNoWriMo pep rally with Grant Faulker…and a bunch of aspiring authors who were worried about “where to begin.”

Here’s the brass tacks about writing, y’all…I’m gonna let you in on the “big secret to writing success.”

Are you ready?

Are you really super-duper ready?

Brace yourselves. It took me years to figure this shiz out.

We all have to start somewhere, and that somewhere is in the chair.

Some days the writing chair feels like it’s at the end of the Green Mile, so I wanted to throw some ideas out there, for all the newbies navigating through their first NaNoWriMo and anyone who’s wondering what to write about.

3 Ideas for when “You Don’t Know What to Write”


Photo credit: Deposit Photos

Combine Concepts: Seriously, stir up a few concepts and see what comes out.

Millennial starting his career under crushing student loan debt? Make him a YouTube blogger, or a stockbroker, or some career with the ability to generate lots of money if he’s good at it. Then make sure there are major impediments to being good at it.

What do I mean? What if your YouTube blogger still lives at home and his mother keeps crashing his videos…talking, or carrying laundry, or in her bathrobe. She won’t stop. She’s hurting his mojo. OhEmGee…

It doesn’t really matter what the problem is. Really. Truly. Make it some creative or weird problem that requires some creative or weird problem-solving and your book is going to rock.

Chris Baty’s fun kit, No Plot, No Problem, makes many seasoned authors shudder, but it’s rockstar for getting words on the page until the “writing every day” thing becomes more natural.

Whatever you decide to write about, do it with abandon.

Combine Genres: Do you read in two different genres? Combine them!

Romance and suspense are a natural fit. Or YA and thrillers. Historical fiction and mystery. You decide, or invent your own. Kristen Lamb and I decided awhile back that Amish Romance and Erotica could fit together if we were creative enough – Fifty Shades of Hay could take the world by storm, right? (Right??)

*slinks away*

Combine Stories: Speaking of Fifty Shades of Grey…it started as Fan Fiction.

There’s nothing wrong, especially when you are learning, with emulating a story that you love and throwing your own characters and twist on top of it.

Julia Quinn, a popular historical romance writer, said she started writing by taking her favorite book from her favorite author at the time (Johanna Lindsay) and typing up the first few pages of the book. By page four, Julia diverted off on her own tangent and was on her way to her own debut novel. Today, she is a New York Times bestselling author.

Everyone starts somewhere, and that somewhere is the chair. Wherever you begin — in the middle of your current work, or starting something new — and whatever you decide to write, do it with your whole heart and mind.

Enjoy yourself. OWN that NaNo draft of yours. It could be the start of something amazing.

NaNoWriMo’s slogan is: The World Needs Your Novel.

I believe that is 100% true, and I encourage you to believe it too. I hope you’ll share your NaNo name and talk about your writing process/fears/angst down in the comments.

Happy writing this month!
~ Jenny

Posted in Inspiration, NaNoWriMo | Tagged , , , , | 13 Comments

How the Yodeling Pickle Has Changed Our Life

The Yodeling PickleY’all haven’t seen me for a few weeks because I’ve been busy with my new Yodeling Pickle. We keep it on the kitchen table and visit with it often. Gone are those quiet mealtimes. My daughter is learning to yodel with it. I tell  you, this Yodeling Pickle is really jazzing up the Cowbell Castle, if you know what I mean.

Jaleta Clegg was the first one to turn me on to this amazing device when she commented on this post. And the reviews. Oh, the reviews… My favorite is below, but here is a link to all the 5-star reviews (over 400!). They are worth a gander.

It’s a great portable music solution
by Timboliah PantsOnFiyah

Accoutrements 11761 Yodelling Pickle (Toy)

I loaned my iPod to my kid and he broke it. This understandably bummed me out, since I really enjoy taking long walks on the beach while listening to some tune-age. I’m kinda low on funds, so buying a replacement iPod wasn’t an option for me. I was very fortunate to discover the Yodeling Pickle. I have been super pleased with the results. First of all, as luck would have it, the Yodeling Pickle just happens to yodel all of my favorite tunes that were stored on my iPod. Hits like “Bobbejaan Schoepen yodels the collected works of Black Sabbath” and of course Slim Whitman’s edgy yodeling rendition of “Baby Got Back.”

I have withheld one star from my review however, giving the Yodeling Pickle just four of five possible stars. There isn’t a headphone jack, which is only a problem if the folks around me don’t appreciate yodeling, (which almost NEVER happens). Also, I was accustomed to carrying the iPod strapped to my arm with the elastic armband accessory. Nothing like this is available for the pickle. On my beach walks, I’ve found that the pickle can be carried around by conveniently tucking it down into the front of my Speedo. I’ve met tons of nice ladies on the beach since scoring the pickle. I can only assume they dig yodeling as much as I do.

It’s a great portable music solution for yodeling fans. Cheaper than an iPod and the chicks seem to dig it.

Yodeling Pickle

The Yodeling Pickle – Unboxed


That’s quite an attractive item, isn’t it? And so touchable. It’s on sale from Amazon right now for about $12. Here’s the link, if you too must have one! Or buy two and give one as a stocking stuffer. The holidays are coming, you know.

I know you want to hear the melodic yodel, so I’ve made a short recording for you. I’ll bet you play it all day long. Perhaps you’ll even follow the gentleman’s example from above and wear it “on your person.”

Now that’s a bundle of magic for your Monday, right? Your day can only go down from here.

[OhmyGOD, the double entendres are everywhere.]

Do you own a yodeling pickle? What do you think of it as a stocking stuffer? Can you tell I laughed like a crazy woman the entire time I wrote this post? Enquiring minds always want to know these things here at More Cowbell!

~ Jenny

Posted in Holidays, Humor | Tagged , , , , | 10 Comments

Undie Chronicles, Vol. 32: Frontal Enhancement Undies

Those of you who are new to More Cowbell might have missed The Undie Chronicles. The regular posse here knows: When the Undie-verse speaks, we will always listen. I had no idea when this began that there were so many hilarious undie-based topics to discuss. Plus it’s Monday, and I like a good Monday belly laugh.

I’ve seen a product that needs some crazy-fabulous reviews on Amazon. Heck, I’d love to review it myself.

Put your beverage down, y’all. We’re going to explore the world of Male Frontal Enhancement Underwear.

First, this video gives the basics on “What Constitutes Good Male Undies?”


Frontal Enhancement Underwear” is apparently all the rage in manly circles, and the Zon has got some. Ladies have been wearing padded bras for years. Why shouldn’t the men get in on the false advertising as well?

As an article on BonVida says, “You can easily add up to 2 inches where it matters most” with Andrew Christian’s Shock Jock underwear. (Who wouldn’t want to do that?)

This brand has groovy names like:

The article sells it this way:

Have you always wanted a bigger package? Is there no such thing as “too big?” If you’re nodding your head yes to either one of these questions, then let me introduce you to the Andrew Christian Shock Jock underwear. With the Active Shaping Technology cup adding up to 2 inches to your frontal measurements, this is men’s bulge enhancing underwear at its best!

Sometimes adding a few extra inches is a matter of vanity. You can already picture in your mind the looks of envy once you loosen your belt and drop your pants. But for some men, added fullness in the pants is less of a “want” and more of a “need.”

Available in both brief and boxer styles, the Shock Jock underwear can be just what you have been looking for. Each style features a hidden Active Shaping Technology cup sewn into the underwear.

I’m lamenting that I don’t have the equipment to properly review this goldmine, if you know what I mean. And I’m quite curious about the “fun snuggle fit.” (see below)

Amazon’s Product Description:

Look and feel your sexiest with our sporty almost naked locker room jock with show-it. This piece was designed to make you look good, whether you’re doing squats at the gym or at Netflix and chilling with bare each pair features contrasting bold colors between the front and back and slimming signature Andrew Christian waistband.

With a brief-like fit, the straps comfortably push and lift your butt up for the extra attention it deserves. The revealing back window doesn’t hurt either. Our Andrew Christian show-it technology features a horseshoe shaped inner cup lined by soft elastic and adds up to 1.5 inches (3.8 cm) to a man’s frontal measurement and provides the biggest natural enhancement of any underwear in our line.

You are going to enjoy the sexy feel and look of these briefs, and so will everyone else.

[That last line is EPIC.]

Selling features:

  • 93% Rayon From Bamboo, 7% Spandex (Isn’t bamboo wood? The irony is delicious.)
  • Imported (from where exactly?)
  • Machine Wash
  • Features colored contrast trim around pouch
  • Show-it tech adds up to 1.5 inch (Listen up, IT Guys, there’s “tech” in these undies!)
  • Sexy take on classic jock
  • Anatomically correct pouch with fun snuggle fit (Can’t. Stop. Laughing.)
  • Feels like you’re not wearing any underwear at all

An Amazon product review (5 stars!) from a man who tried them: 

Awesome shorts! Sexy little thing 😉 just that the hammock is very small and my boys and the manhood keeps slipping off the hammock! But who cares 😉 lovely shorts to lounge around 🙂 since I am not muscular, there’s some room around my thighs 🙂

*giggling over the hammock*

Magic like this needs many more reviews! The max I saw for any of the above varieties was eight, and all of them were pretty hum-ho like the one I listed above. Who remembers VEET hair removal for men? And Poo-Pourri? What about the Intestinal Armageddon? Now THOSE are some entertaining reviews. You just can’t make this kind of stuff up.

If you want to visit the “know-all” authority site for these frontal enhancement gems, take a peek at That site has way more than you ever thought of asking about on this topic.

Had y’all already heard of “frontal enhancement” undies for men? Every bought any? Are there any guys willing to buy and review? Enquiring minds always  want to know these things here at More Cowbell!

~ Jenny

Posted in Undie Chronicles | Tagged , , , , | 11 Comments

Which Posts Have the “Most Cowbell of All Time?”

Graphic from

Photo from

Some of the readers at More Cowbell have hung out here since we were blogging babies together (back in 2011) and some have discovered the blog more recently. Regardless, I want to say thank you.

More Cowbell wouldn’t be half as much fun without every one of you. A recent review of the stats surprised me – the ten most popular posts here weren’t the ones I expected.

10 Posts with the Most Cowbell (aka “hits”)

#10 – When Pregnancy Becomes A Sticky Business

This is from the Risky Baby Business series. Some of us have to give ourselves shots and worry our brains out while pregnant. This post is for those ladies.

#9 – O is for OMG, A Disorder I Shouldn’t Laugh At (But Do)

Who know Oversized Male Genitalia was a thing? Or that a priest would consult on this hilarious guide.

#8 – (has that number in the title!) 8 Fun (Mostly True) Facts About Mondays

A self-explanatory post that helped me survive a hellacious Monday.

Anti Monkey Butt Powder_Amazon#7 – The Undie Chronicles: How To Avoid The Dreaded “Monkey Butt”

This was an interview with Laura Drake (who is a wonderful writer, and a friend of mine) where she shared Monkey-Butt-itis with me. There’s a special powder, and undies and everything.

#6 – Thundershirts For Humans–A Bazillion Dollar Idea

These should be invented for menopausal ladies and the parents of teenagers. That is all.

#5 – Writing 50,000 Inimitable Smiles by Margie Lawson

Fantastic post on writing by the incomparable Margie Lawson. She has a whole series over at Writers In the Storm too!

#4 – Why Do Pregnant Women Get SO Much Heartburn?


Photo from Pixabay

There is actually a reason for this, and it isn’t just a baby taking up all available space. If I had to learn all this stuff, I was certainly going to pass the gold on to all of you.

#3 – Ten Computer Phrases that Sound Dirty But Aren’t

Like you wouldn’t laugh if someone asked you about your “dongle.” Admit it, you so would.

#2 – 10 Creative Ways To Express Your “Inner F-Bomb”

My brother, the Bag Whore, won this category hands down (if you know what I mean). No one is better at creative swearing than he is. It’s a skill learned from having three children.

And the #1 MOST popular post… *drumroll*

Using The 12 Stages of Physical Intimacy To Build Tension In Your Novel

This post came from a talk given by Linda Howard, and it changed how I read and (especially) how I write. I’ve also heard it has changed marriages and dating habits…I’ll let you decide.

Wow. When I started this blogging thing, I wasn’t sure if people would even read ten of my posts. What a strange, fun, happy trip this has been. Thanks for coming along for the ride!

Do you remember any of these posts? Which was  your favorite? What was the best thing you’ve read or seen on the internet this week? Enquiring minds love to know these things here at More Cowbell!

~ Jenny

Posted in Blogging, More Cowbell | Tagged , , , , | 12 Comments

The Fitness Tracker that Aims Below the Belt (Literally)

fitnessMove over, FitBit, there’s a new game in town and it’s aimed exclusively below the belt…at the lady bits. Usually it’s the More Cowbell Posse that sends me these crazy bits of trivia but this time it was my new fun friend, and content organizer: Flipboard.

One of the fitness articles that arrived on my feed was Glamour magazine’s gem, “I Never Knew How Strong My Vagina Was Until I Tried 3 Vaginal Fitness Trackers.” How do you NOT click on that?

I sure did click on that article. I read it and laughed my ass off. Then I read it again.

There are exercise programs for the vajayjay? How did I not know this? And there are apps and trackers for these invigorating devices. (Yes, you heard me, devices, as in plural. There are multiples for this stuff, just like you’d expect.)

After finding out about the NSA-trackable sex toys, I wasn’t super-surpised about the trackable part. There’s an app for every-damn-thing these days. I use Yoga Studio for workouts and Plant Nanny to grow virtual plants by drinking more water. I zoom ahead of the coffee line with the Starbuck’s app. Apps are a fun and useful thing.

But we’re tracking the strength of the lady bits now? What’s next, an Olympic event? By the way, there is a woman already training to be the gold medalist if that happens — Tatiana Kozhevnikova. (I’m just hazarding a guess that this is one mature woman who doesn’t tinkle when she sneezes.)

This gal can lift the equivalent weight of two watermelons with her private parts.

That’s an achievement you don’t hear about every day, right? (Only here at More Cowbell, my friends. We have ALL the best useless trivia.)

Note: That link above is a pretty hilarious video that’s actually (mostly) suitable for work.

I have so many questions since reading this article! The biggest one is how did this author face her friends and co-workers after writing thisThis woman is BRAVE. She used and reviewed three different devices and talked about them all. In detail. It’s a very well-written article, but still…

She reviewed three (apparently popular) devices: Tasl, Elvie and KGoal. The Elvie spawned this verbiage:

Elvie has four different levels ranging from training to advanced, and let’s just say the advanced is very advanced. This was, after all, a workout. Despite getting a 96 out of 100 in the training “lift” exercise, I literally got a zero in the advanced one the first time (though I was able to work up to a 54).

The hardest ones were the “hold,” which has you squeeze to keep the ball in the same place to build endurance, and the “speed,” which makes you hit a number of targets very quickly. These made me feel like I was developing my vagina’s fine motor skills. (Dying over that last sentence. DYING. Choking-and-unable-to-breath fits of laughter happened in my kitchen.)

Turns out the same way you can train yourself to shoot an arrow into the middle of a target, you can also improve your vagina’s precision. This made me aware of muscles I didn’t know I had.

Since when did we have to do fitness tracking and conditioning for the vajayjay…aren’t planks and burpees enough of a challenge? Can’t we do our kegels quietly and happily without having to compete for the “advanced score.” I mean, they push out babies…I’d say vaginas have already impressed us all.

Had y’all heard of this fitness trend? Do you have any inside scoop on any of the three devices? Enquiring minds need to know these things here at More Cowbell!

~ Jenny

Posted in Health, Humor | Tagged , , , , , | 15 Comments

Missed Connections: Find The Truth In This Crazy Hot Mess

My blogging pal, Natalie Hartford, has been on hiatus for a few years but she’s b-a-a-ack, and I’m excited. I pulled a post out of my archives in her honor. Her original Missed Connections post had us rolling in the aisles.

If you’re like the two of us, your first question is, “what’s a missed connection post?” [If you’re even more like us, your second question is, “How do I tear myself away from this crazy hot mess?”]

It’s like this:

People all around the world write and post these “missed connections” advertisements on Craigslist detailing their romantic “missed connection” with someone. My all time favorite find was a Tumblr site that gathers the funniest ones together.

My fave headlines were from Kansas City’s Craigslist:

PnL – You sold me your Pantys Friday night – m4w

You put midget porn in my mailbox – m4w

Shut the front door!!! My brother lives in Kansas City. I’ve got to call him and ask whether he knows he’s sharing his highways with these people. Criminey! (Plus, maybe he’ll teach these bozos how to spell “panties.”)

My favorite part about the one above with the midget porn? On the Tumblr site, there’s a little note below it that says, “Note – this is not the way to pick up your mailwoman.” (Ya think?)

Like Natalie, I could be in these things all day. You can’t buy this kind of entertainment (except maybe in Kansas City).

Now, on to the voting part of your Monday morning… Here are 4 Missed Connections for your viewing hilarity – three are from Craigslist and one I made up.

Can you spot the fake one? 

You Dropped Your Bible and I Saw Your Thong

I was walking down the sidewalk and you, a very good looking woman from the backside, dropped what appeared to be the Holy Bible, bent to pick it up, and (through no fault of my own) I saw your thong…and wow.

I know Jesus spent some time with Mary Magdalene, and likely she wore next to nothing under those sackcloths, but I have to admit, your short skirt and fluorescent pink thong were way sexier, and made me want to get to “know you”, in the Biblical sense of course. I’m not Christian, but if we can stick to the Basic 10 Commandments and leave the Pope out of it, I think we’ll be OK.

Oh, by the way, I was the very tall, tan, curly-haired, non-Christian gentleman walking behind you.

You Got Naked In My Trash

Yesterday afternoon while stocking the shelves in a local art gallery, I spied movement out our back door. It’s painted black to protect our merchandise so you couldn’t see me but boy could I see you! You were taking off your clothes in the middle of our trash area and gave me the best 5 minutes of my life.

You put on a pink t-shirt, black leather skirt and come-get-me pumps. I can only assume you were getting ready for a date at the apartment complex across the street.

I’d love to know your name. Better yet, I’d love to see you strip someplace better smelling, like my bedroom. Tell me the name of the apartment complex behind the strip mall so I’ll know it’s you.

Looking Forward To My Next Happy Meal

To the woman I had sex with in the bathroom of Walmart. I know we had a very strange love affair and it was an amazing 2 minutes. I would love to take you out sometime.

Meet me this Thursday the 6th at the same Walmart around 6pm. I’ll be sitting next to Ronald McDonald. Hope you are trying to find me…

Strong Legs on Kelly Drive

Hello. I saw you running on Kelly drive. You sort of fell trying to avoid some duck poo. I tried not to laugh but we both had a good laugh about it.

You looked like a former athlete because you had really nice muscular legs. Me I was the AA guy with the great smile. Jokes. Well I would really like to see you again to, um, run together or something sometime soon.


There you have it — THE BEST Missed Connections I could find + a fake one. I can’t wait to see who guesses.

And just for kicks, which Missed Connection do you find most hilarious?

Natalie and I love the Hot Mess Extravaganza of Missed Connections. You know she and I will be killing ourselves over these for at least the next week.

Have you ever put up a Missed Connections ad? Do you wish they’d had this sort of thing sooner? What would you write if YOU were making a Missed Connection? Enquiring minds always want know these things here at More Cowbell!


Posted in Humor, More Cowbell | Tagged , , , , , | 7 Comments

The Beauty Product that Made Me Giggle

One of my Millennial pals raved to me about snail slime, which is apparently the latest beauty craze. And I started laughing my guts out, thinking she was completely full of media hype. Only this is a real trend, common in Asia, and the practice dates back to ancient Greece.

Shut the crazy front door.

I can’t quite wrap my brain around the idea that snail slime is a desired  commodity. I tried it over the weekend and it didn’t feel bad. It’s supposed to help build collagen so I ordered some on Amazon. You know I will be sharing the results with all of you!

The Hubs immediately asked the questions burning in any logical brain:

  • How do they get the slime?
  • Who “milks” these snails?
  • Do women actually put the snails on their face?

Apparently there are snail farms for escargot and about 30-40 years ago the workers discovered that their hands got softer. So now they’ve added slime-production to their list of duties. They poke the snails, wash and tickle their bottoms, and poke in with a swab to get all the slime.

And holy cowbell, as if that wasn’t creepy enough, Korean women do put multiple snails on their face. Like on purpose. For hours at the spa.

Note: Many of these same women swear by the 10-Step Korean Skincare Routine, so they’re already way more committed than I am. Washcloth exfoliation and moisturizer after the shower are much more my speed.

This snail business is right up there with the V-Steam for me. I’m struggling with the “why” women do this to their bodies. I mean aren’t we all gorgeous enough without steamers under our hoohahs and snail trails on our face?

If you still want to know more, here are 10 Fascinating Facts about Snail Slime.

What say you, my posse? Had you heard of this slimy beauty trend? Would you try it? Enquiring minds love to know these things here at More Cowbell!

~ Jenny

p.s. I’m in two places at once today! I’m over at Jami Gold’s place talking about the #1 Enemy of Writing Dreams.

Posted in Health, Thoughty Thursday | Tagged , , , , , | 24 Comments

The NSA Can Now Track Your Sex Toys

Holy cowbell, sex toy hacking is a thing! Did you all catch this splendid news item? Hackers in New Zealand have found a way to hack the Bluetooth technology on a popular “personal massager,” which has opened up a whole vibrating can of worms if you know what I mean. 

At last week’s DEF CON 24 in Las Vegas, one of the speaker modules was titled:

Breaking the Internet of Vibrating Things: What We Learned Reverse Engineering Bluetooth- and Internet-Enabled Adult Toys

Before we get to the article, the device and the implications, let’s chat for a second about DEF CON. Not being a hacker, I’d never heard of the conference before. It’s held yearly in late July/early August and it’s unlike any conference I’ve ever attended.

Get this: entry is cash only, no early bird pricing, NO registration. (I can’t even describe to you how much this would stress all my conference-going pals out.) And there are tens of thousands of hackers attending this event every year.

Just reading the conference information page was eye-opening. Hacker conferences are a THING, y’all.

When and where is DEF CON 24?
DEF CON is generally in the last week of July or first week of August in Las Vegas. DEF CON 24 will be held August 4-7, 2016 at Paris and Bally’s in Las Vegas. Many people arrive a day early, and many stay a day later. Again this year we will have some things running on Thursday.

How much is admission?
$240.00 USD, Cash for all four days. Everyone pays the same: The government, the media, the ‘well known hackers’, the unknown script kiddies. The only discount is for Goons and speakers, who get to work without paying for the privilege. We only accept cash – no checks, no money orders, no travelers checks. We don’t want to be a target of any State or Federal fishing expeditions.

Can I pre-register for DEF CON?

How many people will be there?
Last year we had more than 15,000 people at DEF CON! The last few years, attendence has been in the 12-14k range.

The article I read in the British newspaper, The Register, stated that “the two-person team of g0ldfisk and follower got hold of the schematics for the We Vibe 4 Plus, a U-shaped vibrator that can be controlled via Bluetooth using a remote control or a smartphone app. The wireless functions mean the device’s makers had to report its details with the United States the Federal Communications Commission, and that filing allowed the hackers to figure out a way to crack the device.”

I don’t know about you, but they lost me at “smartphone app.” I have no desire to have my lady bits (and their various and sundry activities) broadcast to the cloud. Anyone who saw Katherine Heigl in The Ugly Truth knows what happens when control of sex toys fall into the wrong hands.

And the order page for the cute We-Vibe devices says these hackable darlings cost $179 + shipping. That’s a whole lot more than the usual $15-50 range for most nookie toys. The good news is, they’re almost half off at Amazon. *lol*

We-Vibe Web Capture

The gal who sent me the article, said: “Anyone who hacks someone’s vibrator definitely has too much time on their hands.”

My response to that?

My friend, these are hackers. These are not people who are out socializing and frittering away their time with live people. They are busy poking around virtually at the rest of us – literally in this case.

Not that they don’t have a killer sense of humor – here’s the abstract for the talk.

Note: My comments in pink. Their choicest lines in blue.

The Internet of Things is filled with vulnerabilities, would you expect the Internet of Vibrating Things to be any different? As teledildonics come into the mainstream, human sexual pleasure has become connected with the concerns of privacy and security already familiar to those who previously only wanted to turn on their lights, rather than their lover[Dying over “teledildonics”…Dying!!!]

Do you care if someone else knows if you or your lover is wearing a remote control vibrator? Do you care if the manufacturer is tracking your activity, sexual health and to whom you give control? How do you really know who is making you squirm with pleasure? And what happens when your government decides your sex toy is an aid to political dissidents? 

[When “my sex toys become an aid for political dissidents??” If that happens, people, the end days are upon us. Just pack up your non-cloud-connected sex toys and go live off the grid.]

Because there’s nothing more sexy than reverse engineering we looked into one product (the We-Vibe 4 Plus from the innocuously named “Standard Innovation Corporation”) to get answers for you.

Attend our talk to learn the unexpected political and legal implications of internet connected sex toys and, perhaps more importantly, how you can explore and gain more control over the intimate devices in your life. Learn the reverse engineering approach we took–suitable for both first timers and the more experienced–to analyze a product that integrates a Bluetooth LE/Smart wireless hardware device, mobile app and server-side functionality. More parts means more attack surfaces! [No, Mr. NSA, pleeeaaaaazzzzze don’t attack my vibes.

Alongside the talk, we are releasing the “Weevil” suite of tools to enable you to simulate and control We-Vibe compatible vibrators. We invite you to bring your knowledge of mobile app exploits, wireless communication hijacking (you already hacked your electronic skateboard last year, right?) and back-end server vulnerabilities to the party. It’s time for you to get to play with your toys more privately and creatively than before.

[Did you notice there’s “IYKWIM’s” for almost every sentence in this abstract?]

So there you have it, my friends. Here at More Cowbell we’ve all discovered that the NSA really is storing data on everything.

Had you ever heard of this type of hacking? Knowing what you know, would you ever  buy the We Vibe 4 Plus? What’s the most unusual hacking story you’ve ever heard? Enquiring minds always want to know these things here at More Cowbell!


Posted in Technology Fun, Thoughty Thursday | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

8 (Mostly True) Facts About Mondays

What we’d all like to being doing on Mondays… Photo: Dana Ross Martin ~ WANA Commons

I don’t know about you, but I suck at Mondays. And mornings. They’re just not my thing. My only solution to the Monday Madness is to share some smiles.

Facts and theories about the first (often dreaded) day of the week.

1. Monday isn’t actually the worst day of the week. (Tuesday is.) Monday is when you find out what you missed from the prior week – Tuesday is when you must DO those things.

2. Visits to Sexy Town or Hanky-Panky-Ville guarantee a great Monday mood. Married people are more likely to have sex on the weekends (especially if they have kids). Plus, they’ve had some sleep. (This supports my theory from #1.)

3. Monday is hands down the best traffic day of the week. Seriously. All those people who take 3 day weekends are off the roads. Plus there’s lots of “weekend flu” going around on Monday mornings.

4. 50% of workers are late on Monday mornings. No joke. I think it’s the stress, which is kind of hilarious considering most people only work about 3.5 productive hours on Mondays. Or maybe it’s that “weekend flu.”

5. I always have clean hair on Mondays. I can’t state that unequivocally every day. Things happen. But the weekends are when I catch up and that includes hair washing.

6. I drink more coffee on Mondays. Hey, I’m not bragging. Truth is, I’m usually dragging from trying to cram everything in over the weekend. Most days I have 2 cups but on Monday’s I mainline caffeine just to get my verve on for the week.

7. Monday brings cute outfits to the workplace. This is directly related to the aforementioned point of trying to cram everything into the weekend. That includes laundry. This unearths serious clothing treasure.

8. Most people don’t smile until after 11 am on a Monday. (11:16 am to be exact.) Huh. Who knew?

What theories do you have about Monday? Where does it fall in your “Like” rankings? How was your weekend? Equiring minds always want to know these things here at More Cowbell!

– Jenny

Posted in Life's Challenges, More Cowbell | Tagged , , , , | 22 Comments