carol convention top five

Two weeks ago, my friends and I embarked on our annual trip, which we like to call Carol Convention (read more about it here). We spent the weekend at a cabin in the Ouachita National Forest in Arkansas which, believe it or not, is actually really, really pretty. Because I like to think my friends and I can be pretty entertaining, I bring you:



5. Inventing peanut butter m&m pancakes. Recipe: throw peanut butter m&m's into Aunt Jemima pancake mix. Source: Just Dandy original. Be on the lookout for my cookbook.



4. Making a music video to Justin Bieber's Boyfriend in the middle of the woods and on the top of a mountain.  I wonder if that will ever see the light of day.



3. Since every year a different one of us plans the trip, at some point we have to figure out who will be in charge of the next one. On previous trips, we've found a "mascot" guy to draw a name out of a hat; at a piano bar in Florida we decided that a guy who looked like Fabio was the most hilarious man we had ever seen, it clearly had to be him. Last year at a dance hall in Texas, I asked a cowboy who had performed earlier that evening to be The One.

This year, we shared our secluded cabin with not a soul -- except for two dogs. The only thing to do was tape three names to the bottom of three bowls and put meat in each one. Whichever bowl the dog went for first contained the name of our next planner.




2. The most ridiculous game of Catchphrase. The scene: We're trying to guess a word based on clues my friend Dana is giving us.


Dana: Okay, if I want to talk to someone I would call them on my....
Us: Cell phone!
Dana: Nope.
Us: Cellular phone!
Dana: No.
Us: Mobile phone!
Dana: No...
Us: MoBILE phone!
Dana: NO.
Us: Cellular device?
Dana: NO!!
Us: Smartphone?
Dana: NO. WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE?
The rest of us are silent.
Dana: TELEphone.



1. Throughout the United States, you might like to joke that those of us who live in The Dirty South are partial to marrying our relatives. Well, in the south, we like to deflect that accusation on one state in particular: Arkansas.


You guys, we were in Arkansas for TWO. DAYS. We listened to local radio for maybe an hour total. Besides hearing Gotye approximately 656 times in that hour, we also heard a segment where the DJ asked people to call in and tell us "how their life is like a soap opera". The first caller:


I am dating a guy whose mother is his sister. 


I am thinking that kind of confession has to happen pretty often for us to have caught one in the short time we were there.