Champagne Problems (Post 27)

There was a time, way back when, where I was dating a jack-hole.  This particular (female) jack-hole was very self-obsessed.  I loved her (or thought I did), so I made it ALL about her.  So much so that I almost quit my comedy career.  I don’t even think that registered on jack-hole’s radar screen because jack-hole was all about jack-hole.  I see her around the scene today and she still pretty much is obsessed with herself.  But, I’m not here to complain about jack-hole.    Jack-hole did me the world’s biggest favor, truly, or I never would’ve met Wifesy.


What I do want to talk about is a feeling that I had, while I was dating jack-hole and our Titanic started to sink.  I had this feeling that everything I was doing was wrong.  Worse than wrong.  I was losing everything and everything I was losing wasn’t worth a sh*t.  I lost my apartment, left my job, and jack-hole was fleeing the scene.  With that much coming down around me, all I could think was, “I should be building irrigation ditches in India.”


titanic sinking


Over and over again, “I should be building irrigation ditches in India.”


I don’t know why India.  I don’t know why irrigation ditches.  What I do know is that I had a sense that I should be doing something larger with my life.  I wanted meaning, probably because everything was coming apart at the seams.


The thing is…I still have that feeling today, albeit less intensely.


I heard a senator being interviewed on Public Radio.  He’s the senator responsible for COBRA, which in the States allows people to have the same health insurance for a year after they leave their jobs at cost.  He’s also responsible for the law that requires ANY hospital in the U.S. to stabilize you regardless of your healthcare coverage.  I’m not saying that these things are amazing by any means.  But, imagine if we didn’t have them.  Imagine Americans left bleeding on the steps of hospitals because they don’t have coverage.  It’s barbaric and that’s what could’ve happened if this gentleman wasn’t integral in pushing those things through.  But, that’s not why I bring him up.  I bring him up because of what he said about his job.  I’m paraphrasing, but he said something to the effect of, “I used to work in finance and I went to work everyday.  Everything was fine.  I enjoyed my job.  But, now I get up with this renewed sense of urgency and passion because I literally know that the work I do in Congress CAN change people’s lives.”


Often I think comedy is frivolous/ blogging is frivolous/ selling Netflix subscriptions, frivolous/ writing, frivolous/ a sommelier, frivolous, etc.  You get the picture.  Do these things really help someone?  Do they really help someone who desperately needs help?  Should those of us that care be out there -instead of inside on the computer- building irrigation systems?


That’s why I’ve always liked companies like Invisible Children or Tom’s Shoes.  IC raises money to stop the use of child soldiers by tyrants in Uganda and Africa.  Tom shoes GIVES a pair of shoes to a South American child in need every time YOU buy a pair.  I felt this way about Pallotta Teamworks and the Boston-NY AIDs rides as well.  They are companies with a social backbone.


tom's shoes, invisible children

Everyone benefits from Tom’s Shoes…


I think, at one point, I’m going to have to give back in exchange for my “champagne problems.”


I first came upon the term, “champagne problems” during a Modern Family episode.  Here was the exchange between Al Bundee and Gloria played by the beautiful Sofia Vergara:


Gloria:  “Jay bought this bicycle for me, but I keep hitting my boobs with my knees.”

Jay:  “Champagne problems, eh?”


I’m grateful for my life.  I could go through it and every single problem I have is pretty much a “champagne problem.”  That’s good fortune.


If I had my way (and tons of venture capital or at the very least a good kickstarter) I’d start what I like to call, in my mind…ALNU CON.


AlNu Con – it stands for, “Altruistic Nut-ball Convention.”  At these conventions, entrepreneurs and social media nuts would get together and find ways to make the world a better place through real companies, much like IC or Tom’s Shoes.


Whenever someone wants to tell me that comedians are screaming narcissists (and it happens often) I remember I’m the girl who wants to dig ditches.  I’m the girl who is grateful for her “champagne problems.”  I’m the CEO of AlNu Con, of course.


Who knows, maybe one day I’ll make that little thing happen and it will turn into a big thing.


Today, however, my Macbook is being a very slow feck-wad.  But, then again them is some…CHAMPAGNE PROBLEMS.



Sweet Mother is updated daily-ish on the quest to 365 consecutive posts.  You can follow this blog by clicking the “follow” prompt at the top right of the page.



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Photo creds:

champ-feature, tom’s, titanic


42 thoughts on “Champagne Problems (Post 27)

  1. “Do these things really help someone? Do they really help someone who desperately needs help? Should those of us who care be out there – instead of inside on the computer- building irrigation systems?”
    The answer to both of these questions is yes. You know why? Because every single time we cause spontaneous laughter that makes a person happy to be alive, the world is a better place AND every single time we take action with positive intent to relieve human suffering, the world is a better place.
    Nice post Sweet Mother.

    1. thanks, honie. i really struggled over this one today. just about what to write. went back and forth for quite a while. and i’m in complete agreement that INTENT is huge. if your intent is to make the world a better place – whether it be thru laughter or blogging or origami – it can and will happen. much love, sm

  2. Awesome idea SM! Drop me a line if you decide to do this. A long time ago, my team and I wrote a grant proposal for a small non-profit project in Vietnam. We got a small bit of change :)
    I would like to help any way I could.

    1. you know, fab, my instinct really is leading me this way… i’ll have to think on it a bit more, but there IS something about it that just feels right. i will definitely contact you. after i probably write even more about it here. looool. xoxo, sm

  3. I guess a lot of us, “we whiners”, have mostly champagne problems. The name makes a lot of sense. I don’t want to go out digging ditches, but I will try to cut back on the whining. Thanks to you.

    1. wifesy whined this morning. literally about her honey sliding off her toast. i was like she-sus christ! there are ppl out there with traumatic brain injuries!!! i’m not sure i want to dig the ditch either, but i may be able to help raise some money for ditch diggers over the course of the near future. i think. i hope? xo, sm

  4. When things seem like they suck, I’ve been known to mutter “I should go move some dirt. It’s something I can handle”.

    There’s something good about digging dirt. ;-)

    Champagne problems. I like it. Well done.

    1. there is something about working with one’s hands too, i think. it clears the mind. not saying i do it much. but, sometimes i think about reno-ing and flipping houses and then i remember i don’t know how to do any of that stuff… and i stop. loool. xo, sm

  5. Normally I don’t comment directly on blogs but I think a) this is an important point to make and b) too long for twitter….

    While I agree a lot of us feel the same way that we want to do something to help the bigger cause, don’t sell yourself short on the comedy and blog thing.

    In my view, the crazier the world gets the more people look for normalcy. Comedy, blogging, morning talk shows, tv shows whatever it is, is something people can connect with in some way and gives some people a sense of calm when everything else seems crazy. Almost like comfort food for the mind.

    You and many others in the entertainment/comedy biz may think you are just writing words or making fart jokes, etc, but sometimes that’s what people need. A bad day/week/month can quickly be turned around by disconnecting with a good laugh or “oh that puts things in perspective” moment…. Sometimes it is the little things tht have the biggest impact… You never know

    1. but, i’m REALLY glad you made this comment here, tj. i would add this – there are certain ppl in the world – like yourself – who appreciate humor and the release of jokes and the universality of catharsis through decent writing…and then there are the OTHER ppl who have no sense of humor at all! loool. mainly, i’m really happy that ppl like you exist to tell me that my clowning is not so frivolous because my heart -sometimes- thinks it truly is. much love, sm aka beck

  6. Hey, Rebecca: Stop saying what you do is frivolous. It isn’t. Not to me, anyway. When I’m feeling down, and my friends aren’t available, I come to your blog. It almost always causes me to laugh, which means I feel better. So, for me, anyway, having your work makes my world brighter. I’m glad I have access to your words everyday. My day and life are better for them.

  7. I hear you! I’ve done a few posts recently about giving back… so frustrating in Dec. when I did a 4 fundraiser for Heifer international and all people had to do was leave a comment or hit like and I’d donate $2 ($3 if they did both). The number of hits/views on my blog vs the number of people who did either of those things was SO frustrating… further, that other bloggers didn’t think it was worth reposting or sharing, to raise more, seemed so apathetic. My husband had worried that I might get 1,000 likes/comments… I told him not to worry, but had no idea it would be less than usual even. I just keep trying to raise money (mostly for Huntington’s for my Mom), or donate each year to the organizations we believe in, or do as many random acts of kindness that I can each day… we all just do our best, and hope for a butterfly effect. Nice post Mom. xo

    1. it’s hard to get ppl to action. literally. it’s the number one thing talk about with social media. and don’t be too hard on yourself about it. it’s all a numbers game. if 1,000 ppl follow you, 1 will do it. 10,000 then 10 will. 100,000 then 100. it’s like that. more or less. BUT, it’s the intention that is the most important and you have that. so, it’s enough. or at least i like to think it is. ;) sm

  8. This sounds majorly awesome!! I would be interested in that convention too!! I feel so happy because the past few years, I’ve been gleefully telling people that I’m so excited to have “normal people” problems now. I really am grateful :)

    I think that’s why I take the time to give back to the community as much as I can. So the group I’m bringing to you in TWO DAYS is actually two volunteer groups combined and we’re VERY excited to see you!! :) ME MOST OF COURSE!!! :D

    1. i can tell that you do this. you really and truly are a leader in that sense. it’s such a good quality to have. and i’m so psyched i’m gonna meet you tomorrow!!! yeeeeeaaaaaah! we are gonna take lots of pics. xo, sm

  9. Whenever I try to solve my other problems with champagne, I end up getting new ones! There must be a better way.
    I don’t know what it could possibly be, but maybe I should seriously think about it – I’m sure a bottle of red wine will do wonders.

  10. I have a problem with Champagne – it makes my nose tickle.

    Seriously, I think and work done well and full out is of benefit – it may be indirect, but it’s there.

      1. I think of people like my grandfather who worked as a fireman on the railroad for 40 years. His work ethic alone has influenced three generations of us – we all aspire to his level of honesty and thoughtfulness.

  11. Sometimes my Sweet Mom, sometimes making laughter, making joy in truth even small temporary joy is a contribution to humanity and to its betterment.

    You do that.

    When you get it together though, when you have that first convention….I am in. Call me.

  12. Haha! Really enjoyed this post dear Momma of all Mothers. I love this expression and will probably use it for everything. You’ve made my day that extra bit marvellous now! Toodles… ;-)

  13. First of all Sweet Mother, I cannot believe we live in a society where we need to make laws to ensure stabilizing people regardless of their health Ins, that should be a no-brainer. But importantly…Laughter saves lives everyday (it has saved mine)!…I don’t think you realize you are a helping senator of keeping people laughing (alive) regardless of their health Ins as well!

    1. i know, the insurance thing is shocking isn’t it? i wouldn’t have believed it myself if i hadn’t heard the news piece. but, alas, i think it is true. as far as the laughter thing, thank you for saying so. i know laughter helps me, so i know that you are right. but, somehow i must always remind myself of it. much love, sm

  14. Great post. I catch myself tempted to whine and complain (always comes out sounding like a five-year-old pissed about not getting a pony), but truth be told I have a pretty awesome, sheltered, trauma-free life. It’s easy to forget, in the day-to-day muck.

    1. it’s so easy to get on the wahmbulance in modern life. trust me, i know. but, i also know that i have it good. and that the good can be taken away at any moment and that makes me grateful. one day i’ll push that knowledge into something that can help in a larger way… i hope anyway. xo, sm

  15. Sweet Mom this is an amazing post…
    while blogging might not save the world or help a child…your blog does helps atleast to me…i cant really explain it how but your posts make me sort of happy and gives me hope …its like i look forward to visiting this part of wordpress….so i guess writing does helps in a very tiny miny way…

    Alnu Con is creative i must say… :)

    1. wow, lil miss. i’m so glad to hear my posts do that for you. your responses often make my day, as well. truly, if i didn’t get comments from wonderful ppl like you, i might’ve stopped long ago. much love, sm

  16. We can sell snarky, honest t-shirts to raise working capital. Know anyone in the printing business? T-shirt business? See, I knew lesbians were more enlightened, and I hadn’t even read this yet, mama.

  17. Have you ever heard of It’s pretty neat too. All of these different people in third world countries (sometimes in developed countries) get these loans for whatever endeavor they want to take on…and Kiva offers people the opportunity to lend as little as $25 towards the full amount of the loan, and then they pay it back after 12-18 months. I’ve done this for 4 or 5 people with 100% return rate.

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