I’d love to tell you but I’m a mute.

I have this flower in my garden.

I grew it from seed.




For alllllll to see.

So anyone passing by can admire it.

And stare at it.

And be confused by it.

At which point they inevitably ask me …

What is the name of that flower?“.


At which point I feign deafness. Or stupidity.  At the very least I pretend I only speak a very obscure version of Gnome.

I can’t tell them the name of this flower.

I know what it is.  I just can’t bring myself to tell them.

But I’ll tell you.


Try saying that to a curious 16 year old boy.

It’s actually called Celosia Cristata, but its common name is Cockscomb.  Wonder why?  This picture should shed some light on the situation.


Cockscomb On Chicken


Cockscomb.  Ick.  But I guess it’s better than Peniscomb.  Or Johnsoncomb.  Or Thatolepurplethingcomb.

It’s funny what will embarrass me (cockscomb) and what won’t (entire video of me testing a frozen yogourt tampon).  Don’t even get me started on tripping in public or going through the cash of a teenage boy with tampons in my grocery cart.

So what about you?   I’m sure there’s SOMETHING that embarrasses you.

For instance in the case of my mother, what embarrasses her …  is probably me.



  1. Kat - the other 1 says:

    If I’m embarrassed I never let on.
    I had a LOT of practice.

    My youngest sister was a horror. She lived to make my life hell.
    I learned from a very young age to never let it show, cause that just made it worse.
    The whole “ignore them & they’ll stop,” is complete hooey. But, don’t react & at least it doesn’t get worse.

    So I can put my tampons, pads, bladder leak liners, etc in the cart and look you in the eye & fart. Wait, no, & look you in the eye if I must and appear calm & normal, even if I’m feeling like a completely raving lunatic in near full on panic attack mode inside.

    However, this has taken much practice.
    When I was 19 my best friend was a guy (who had lots of sisters). We had stopped at the store to grab some things before he dropped me at home, I didn’t have a car yet, and I needed tampons. I had only been using tampons for a year and wasn’t sure what I needed. (Took 8 years of practice before I could wear them, ugh.) I needed to look at / read all the boxes and he was totally comfortable just standing there Staring AT ME! I was mortified. I mumbled some excuse about them not having the right ones and nearly ran out of that section. LoL!
    I had to ask dad to drive me back to the store when I got home lol. At least he will wait elsewhere like he should! Lol.

    Although now you mention it, when I was 14 or so and mom was at her mom’s or somewhere, dad took us kids to the store. He refused to allow me to get a cart, & forced me to march around the store carrying massive amounts of feminine products. I could have died on the spot. Right there. Oy!

    • Karen says:

      In honour of your bravery – COCK. ~ karen!

      • Kat - the other 1 says:

        Is that our new salute? ;D

        Bty, I planted celosia – cockscomb this year. For the first time. Then I thought it looked familiar and pulled it up on your site. Yep! Same thing! Lol, I got it!

  2. Mindy says:

    I had to click over from your garden post to see why you wouldn’t say celosia. I was trying to figure out a naughty world that rhymed or sounded like it. Like the Vulva Seinfeld episode. I understand now. Never heard it called cockscomb before. I’ll stick with celosia.

  3. Bols says:

    I learned recently it’s name is Celosia, never knew about the Cockscomb. Hahaha, live and learn!
    It’s my favourite flower in the fall. Especially the dark purple colour around Halloween time.

    Karen, I never knew you were the voice on MHYM! And I kept wondering why the voice sounds so familiar but I could not place it (I never read the credits). Awesome; I’ll think about when I am watching it the next time (I am sure there will be one or two reruns tonight).

    • Karen says:

      Yep … that’s my show. :) I write some of the script as well. I’ll see if I can’t work Cockscomb into one of the episodes. ~ karen!

  4. Emma says:

    Was doing a home improvement project and needed to run to Home Depot. Since I had little time to finish said project, I ran into the store, saw two male employees in asked frantically and out of breath, “Where’s your caulk?”
    They politely pointed me to the correct aisle and as I ran off, I heard them giggle.

  5. Janet says:

    Laughing so hard I’m crying….pass the tissue! Thanks so much Karen and every one commenting…..You are ALL a HOOT!

  6. Diana says:

    When I worked for “The State” I received a document from a woman trying to get child support from her no-good ex. She had filled out his name, Richard Smith, and his nickname, “Big Dick” In parentheses she wrote “(not really)”

  7. Janelle says:

    Once I was at the paint counter in home depot and a young guy came up and asked where the “caulk remover” was. I instantly burst into uproarious laughter, then realized I was the only one in line who was just that immature. Everyone else was silent. Embarrassing.

  8. Debbie B says:

    Oh hell yeah, I’m getting some next year so I can say it cocks comb, I love talking about my ball cock (toilet part) and horse cock (metal jerry can spout) too

  9. leesa says:

    hi karen! this question may have been asked but i didn’t read ALL the comments… i also have this growing from seed in my garden and i was wondering can you dry this? if so, how? and also, i’ve always wondered how to dry hydrangea. i’ve tried many times unsuccessfully and i know there’s a trick to it but haven’t figured it out. any advice would be greatly appreciated! thanks!

  10. Carol says:

    I do love the look of this plant and don’t think I’ve ever seen one before. You said you planted it from seed? I’ll have to look and see if I can find some for next year. I too, would not be able to utter the name of this plant to anyone who asks, but then again, I can’t remember the names of most of the flowers in my garden and just refer to them by color. As a fairly new reader to your blog, thanks for including your very hysterical link to the yogurt debacle!

  11. Christie says:

    We have a 1960’s version of The Tortoise and the Hare, and every time I read this line to my 3 year old, I inwardly crack up….

    “the Cock swelled up to start the race”….

    ba ha ha ha ha!!!!

  12. Kristina says:

    @Debbie, my dad is Richard, called Dick. As an adolescent I was intermittently mortified by nothing so much as this fact and that he had a belt buckle which proclaimed his name to the world.

    My kids’ middle school has a youngish teacher named Mrs.. Titsworth, which I have always considered unfortunate also…

    • Kim says:

      Went to school with a Richard, who was a Jr., who when by Dick as did his dad. So when you called their house ans asked if Dick was there, they always asked, “Big Dick or Little Dick?” I never knew the polite thing to say.

  13. Crayzmadre says:

    Embarrassing moment: Just recently I sent a picture text to my husband of myself with two balloons stuck up my shirt…did I happen to mention that my husband and father-in-law have the same name? You guessed it…went straight to my father-in-law.Also, my husband thinks it should be called “vag-comb” …that is one visual image I could have done without.

  14. Brenda King says:

    Oh my! You need a tv show! I can’t believe I have never stumbled upon your blog before. You have just become my favorite blogger and I want to be at the same parties as you! I love your wit and sense of humor.

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Brenda! I used to have a tv show. I left the tv show(s). Blogging’s more fun. Actually I lie to you. I am on a tv show right now. I’m the voice of My House Your Money. But that doesn’t count ’cause I don’t have to do my hair for it. ~ karen

  15. Natika33 says:

    It is very interesting what embarrasses different people. Not surprisingly many of the comments mentioned tampons or condoms although, for me, I always felt those were the sorts of things you lose your embarrassment over as you age.

    If I ever have teenage kids one day, I plan on telling them, “You’ll know you’re mature enough for sex when you can look the cashier in the eye as you buy condoms.”

  16. Sarah says:

    Which chicken got the do-up? Nice extraction!

  17. Ally says:

    I love your Cockscomb! You have magical fingers!!! ;-)

    Well, I’m not really embarrassed buying tampons, however when my hubby and I shop together at Costco, and tampons are on the to get list which my hubby insists on….that’s another story. He yells loud…”hey sweetie don’t forget the TAAAAMPOOONS!” And especially when there is a coupon he goes…”SWEETIEEEE WHY DON’T YOU GET 3 BOXES OF TAAAAMPOOONS…we’ll save almost 9 bucks!”
    I act like I don’t know him…and he’s cracking up…and so are all the other customers! “hahahaha”


  18. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    Cockscomb is very pretty..You should plant different colors together..They are also very pretty dried and hung-up or in flower arrangements..Notice how I didn’t say anything dirty or embarrassing?? Just wanted to show you how sophisticated I am…Ha!

  19. jojo says:

    Ha! Every year, my email filter catches me when I offer friends branches from my tree blooms with with fuzzy catkins (pussy willow). Sheesh!

  20. Kerry says:

    I have always had a problem saying Peonies with out smirking. I grew up with four brothers who called there boy-parts “Pee-nees”.

  21. Debbie says:

    I had to think about this one. Early on buying tampons or birth control was the worst. After giving birth and falling in a gym with first graders, breaking my ankle and wetting my pants not much else really matters. There still is one that gets me to this day. Calling men whose name is Richard, Dick as a shorten name. How that even works I don’t know. In my life for what ever reason they all seem to be elderly men in their 80’s and its just WRONG.

  22. Karol says:

    Walking farts. Enough said.

  23. Chris says:

    I just had a LOL moment! Thanks to the thought that I have gone in several times to any of the DIY stores and asked “Where can I find caulk?” Never once was I embarrassed or even considered it but now I will have to stop myself from cracking up if I ask again!

  24. Evalyn says:

    And then along comes Anne and injects sanity into this dicussion. Crested Celosia. That is a pretty name, much more dignified that Cockscomb, which never bothered me until now. Pussy Willow has always give me pause, but caulk? Not till this very moment. Home Depot will never be the same to me again.

    What embarasses me? Finding out I’ve been asking a 17 year old boy at HD for caulk.

  25. Kate S. says:

    Here’s a weird one for you . . . I vacuum daily (with four dogs and four cats, it’s a necessity). Dirty carpets would embarrass me more, probably, but I’m always a bit horrified when someone comes to the door and I haven’t put the vacuum away. I know it’s irrational, but it feels a bit like having my lingerie exposed to public scrutiny or something.

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