Wanted: New President for Island Paradise

Seems like the Maldives is looking for a new ruler and I’d like to go ahead and throw my hat into the ring.

Now, let me get out a map and figure out exactly where the Maldives are. Ah yes, it’s apparently somewhere in the Indian Ocean, which makes sense since the now-former president Nasheed had requested some help from India in foiling the recent coup. Unfortunately, India wasn’t really in a helping mood this week.


Here’s what I don’t know about the Maldives:

  • Where exactly they are located (but I’ve since solved that issue and now have a pretty good grip on that)
  • What kind of government they have (hadn’t given it much thought before, but if I had had to guess before today, I would have said they were led by a chieftan. Because I assume all island nations are identical to those on Gilligan’s Island, apparently.)
  • What language the Maldivians speak. (apparently it’s Dhivehis. I have no idea what that is, but it looks crazy hard).
  • What currency they use. (It’s the ever popular Maldivian Rufiyaa – MVR. Not, as I kinda thought might be the case, coconuts and shells. I only kinda thought that. I wasn’t 100%. No, my second guess was not the Rufiyaa. Wait, is that any relation to raffia, because raffia is waaay useful. You can make summer totes and sandals and even furniture out of that stuff.)
These look very presidential.

Alright, alright, it’s abundantly clear that I know absolutely nothing about the Maldives. However, I do not think that this should keep me out of the running to be the Next Her Tremendousness (first act when I am president: change title to Her Tremendousness, per micronation Seborga).

Here are the things I do know about the Maldives (all thanks to Wikipedia – with the exception of the first fact, which I already knew, thankyouverymuch).

  • It’s a hot honeymoon destination. Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes honeymooned there.
  • The temperature ranges from 75 degrees to 91 degrees throughout the year. Hello! That’s ideal! I love the heat. Love, love, love it.
  • Tuna fisheries are one of their main commercial resources (after tourism, obviously). I like tuna. I would make a great spokesperson for the Maldivian Tuna Industry.
  • The other essential product of the Maldives is coir, the fibre of the dried coconut husk– my second favorite fabric for making smart summer totes and sandals.

But let’s get down to brass tacks here: Obviously the island life is quite compatible for me, but what would I bring to the coir-mat-lined table, you ask? Well….

According to the Reuter’s article:

“Nasheed drew opposition fire for his arrest of a judge he accused of being in the pocket of his predecessor, Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, who ruled for 30 years. Protests at the arrest set off a constitutional crisis that had Nasheed defending himself against accusations of acting like a dictator.”

Listen, I pledge right now not to just go around arresting judges. Second, I promise to let them wear other robes rather than just those plain boring black ones. Thirdly, I plan to hire Steven Seagal, Lawman, to come over and sniff out the truth of whether the Maldivian justice system is corrupt. Then he can deal with it. The real key to ruling an island nation is delegation, I think.

Reuter’s goes on to say:

“Most tourists are whisked straight to their island hideaway by seaplane or speedboat, where they are free to drink alcohol and get luxurious spa treatments, insulated from the everyday Maldives, a fully Islamic state where alcohol is outlawed and skimpy beachwear frowned upon.”

Hmmm, don’t know if I’m really down with the whole “Islamic state where alcohol is outlawed,” but I guess I can get my wine happy hour on over at one of the resorts. I fully approve of frowning on skimpy beachwear though. I’m looking (and frowning) at you, Brandi from the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.

Totally natural pose. That’s how everybody stands when they’re at the beach.

Which reminds me, my third order of business (after changing my title to Her Tremendousness and hiring Steven Seagal to iron out our justice system) is to bring a reality TV show to the Maldives. Those Housewives ladies are always going on exotic vacations to Africa and Costa Rica and such, so let’s get some of that going in the Maldives. Raise our profile a bit. Sell some coir and tuna.

Also from the Reuter’s article:

“Nasheed was famous for his pleas for help to stop the sea engulfing his nation and in 2009 even held a cabinet meeting underwater, ministers all wearing scuba gear, to publicise the problem.”

Ibrahim Didi

Hey! I know how to scuba dive! I’ve just learned! And while I’m very much a nervous novice, I am fully PADI certified, so I am totally prepared to run a cabinet meeting underwater. As long as there are no sharks and no jelly fish.

Dang. The Maldives is apparently home to many whale sharks. Which, according to this lying blog are “very docile and friendly creatures, posing no threat to scuba divers.”

Whatever. I hereby withdraw my application. Thanks for the consideration. Good luck with that whole coup thing.

Luck Be a Lady Holding Two Airline Tickets

United Airlines contest
Nice United people right before I tackled them.

I am not a lucky person. Well, I mean that in the most materialistic sense of the word. I’m actually incredibly lucky in life. I have a great life – I have my health, I have a wonderful man who loves me, great friends, a decent job, a nice place to store all my wonderful shoes. All in all, I have been very lucky, especially given my white trash roots and upbringing.

But when it comes to winning, I haven’t ever hit a hot streak. I consistently lose at every raffle I’ve ever entered, despite the fact that I take a lot of time to fill those cards out with exceptionally neat handwriting.

We go to Vegas several times a year and do some mighty serious gambling, but I’ve never walked away from a table with pockets brimming in chips. Sure, I’ll make a little every now and again at craps or pai-gow poker (the best game EVER), but then I play it all away. Or I shop and spend it. So either way, I almost always leave Vegas empty-handed. (True story: a couple of months ago, XFE was playing day craps at Foxwoods Casino and some high roller came up and started giving everyone at the table $500 bucks every time the thrower hit the numbers he was playing. XFE walked away with $2,000 AND HE DIDN’T EVEN PLAY. That shit? That is lucky.)

But today? Today was the day my luck turned around. A little backstory: my permanent travel companion XFE has been nagging me for a while about following United Airlines on Twitter. They are our preferred airlines and I love them forever and ever. Especially since we are using a whole bunch of their miles to fly first-class roundtrip to Bangkok and Australia for my 40th next March. I heart United.

Anyway, United was having this Twitter promotion where they would go to eight cities for these Tweet-Ups. They announce via Twitter that day where they are going to be (like in a public place like a park or a square) and then the first 10 Twitter followers to meet up with them would get free airline tickets.

XFE follows United and so do I but somehow I never see their tweets. Probably because I follow too many damn people. But XFE had a feeling that I’d be closer to the meet up spot than he would. He warned me to be ready. And to not fail.

I was at work, still sick, basically sneezing and snotting my way through the day (Seriously, the only work getting done around here is booger production and the factory is Blowing. Up.), and trying to write a major article for the people who pay my rent. At 12:49, I see this on my screen.

United Airlines Tweetup contest

Dammit! I was closer. This was it. It was my moment to shine. The future of our domestic household bliss was in my Robitussin-stained hands. I literally kicked my heels off, jammed my feet into flats, grabbed my wallet and ran down the stairs. I didn’t even wait for an elevator. I still had my this-office-is-too-cold, blah, gray sweater on. I ran to Farragut Square (all that running in the mornings really paid off), holding up the Twitpic of the two United Airlines representatives in front of me. I couldn’t really see because of the sun, but I could just make out that they were standing in front of the statue in the park.

Moving fast like a snow leopard shoes. Not so much shoes. Yes, I have the entire animal kingdom represented in shoes. It’s like Noah’s Ark in my closet.

After running around the statue, I finally got my bearings and ran right up to them as they were trying to give the first follower his prize. I was third in line!! I won two tickets!! For any flights between the US, Alaska, Canada, Mexico, Caribbean and Central America. I was so excited! The first words out of my mouth were, “Man, my boyfriend is going to be so happy. He’s a total mileage whore.” Which may not have been appropriate, but I don’t care! I’m a winner! Somebody get me to Vegas!

So, what do y’all think? Where should we go? If the tickets had included Europe, the choice would have totally been so easy–we would have gone to see Erin and Greg in London.