Beth Underwood: Spare your podsnappery and embrace the modern vocabulary, it’s butter up bacon

I’d like to think my vocabulary has always been on the cutting edge — that I’ve been among the cool crowd when it comes to staying current on all things slang. Some days, though, I wonder if I’m slipping, because many of today’s terms fly right over my head. Before I can play it cool, I often find myself consulting the kids for definitions. Take ‘hundo-p’, for example....

Beth Underwood: A salute to man’s best friend, ‘superpowers’ and all, during the Year of the Dog

Through my years as a writer, people often ask how my family feels about being thrust into the limelight as the subject of my stories. My daughter’s response sums things up nicely: “We’re used to it.” I can only hope the pets feel the same way, because tomorrow is the Chinese New Year, and 2018 is Year of the Dog. In our case, Stryker the dog. We got Stryker from a childhood friend of mine...

Beth Underwood: Dear diary, the cutest boy in class wasn’t worth the time we spent apart

When I was growing up, I never kept a diary. Yes, that’s right. Never. I know you’re probably shocked and dismayed, so let me explain. Surely I’m not the only one who balked at the idea of writing down my innermost secrets of childhood. Am I? Certainly, I’m not the only one who kept that first crush on the cutest boy in the class in my head. Tell me I’m not the only one who stewed and fretted...

Beth Underwood: An ongoing battle with public sinks and puffs of air — throwing in the proverbial towel

I had a run-in with the bathroom sinks in a superstore the other day. It wasn’t pretty. It also wasn’t the first time something like this has happened. In fact, I’d guesstimate this was run-in number 17,483. I reached my tipping point this time, though. Enough is enough, which brings me to today’s (semi) rhetorical questions. Am I the only one who’s pining for the days of old where public...

Beth Underwood: Life happens: Messy perfectionist today settles for just a couple of days of clean

I like a clean house. Everything in its place, and a place for everything. Spotlessly shiny floors, dust-free blinds, clutter-free counters, and maybe a little orange peel and rosemary simmering on the stove. This can only mean one thing: I need a housekeeper. One who’ll show up at least twice a week. Because what I like and what I live with are two entirely different things. My reality finds that...

Beth Underwood: It’s okay to pass on that handful of M&Ms, the trip by the brewery will be worth it

Have you heard the talk about decision fatigue? It can be one of the keys to our success (or lack thereof) in every area of life. Pretty impressive, if you ask me. Basically, the thinking is that every decision we make throughout the day — and we’re making as many as 35,000 — exhausts our energy to make the ones that follow. By day’s end, our decision-making skills are nominal, to say...

Beth Underwood: Alexa, Alexus, Alfred — whoever you are, this is Aunt Mary and you should do as I say

This past weekend, my Aunt Mary was having some issues with technology, namely her digital personal assistant, Alexa. No matter what my aunt commanded, Alexa was unresponsive. Needless to say, Aunt Mary was none too happy. In an age where we’ve become more and more reliant on smart technology, such dilemmas are frustrating at best, especially when a solution isn’t readily at hand. For any of you...

Beth Underwood: It’s time for us all to set aside life’s troubles and embrace the true spirit of the holidays

Here we are once again, smack dab in that most wonderful time of the year. T-minus a few days until the big day. Yet it seems like a lot of people have lost touch with their Christmas spirit. They’ve lost their sense of wonder and faith in humanity — like that whole peace on earth, goodwill toward men thing is nothing more than the words to an old song. It’s as if many of us — dare...

Beth Underwood: From a slew of posed school photos to a slew of selfies — sure, that works fine

I overheard a couple of women talking about their kids while standing in the checkout line the other day. One of them pulled out a small photo album to show off pictures of her new granddaughter and family. While they “ooh’d” and “ahhh’d” and “isn’t-she-the-cutest,” a few things occurred to me: A. I cant remember the last time I carried physical photos with...

Beth Underwood: Christmas decorating isn’t for the faint of heart, but ‘tree-mergency’ house calls help

It was about 6:30 p.m. on Sunday night when the tree specialist arrived at our house to diagnose the Christmas tree. Yes, you read that correctly. Our Christmas tree received a house call. The fate of our fir had been teetering on the brink for almost 24 hours at that point, and now, our moment of reckoning was at hand. Looking back, something seemed a bit off as soon as we brought it into the house...

Beth Underwood: First step to recovery is admitting the problem, but let me check my phone first…

People say the first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem, so here goes. “Hello. My name is Beth and I may be a social media junkie.” The moment of truth came last Sunday morning. I was innocently journaling with a nice cup of coffee and minding my own business, thank you very much. On this particular day, things seemed to be off to a fairly good start. Weekend mornings are like that,...

Beth Underwood: My ‘baby’ turned 16 and, biggest surprise of all, doesn’t want his drivers’ license

I’ve been dealing with a rather perplexing situation, lately. In fact, the situation has been ongoing, harkening back to Colton’s 16th birthday two-and-a-half months ago. Maybe I should explain. For most of Colton’s pre-teen and teen years, he has discussed with great enthusiasm the day he’d be old enough to drive. He’s pointed to its benefits, like how he’d be able to assist on long drives...

Kentucky by Heart: ‘Talk Bourbon to Me’ takes something old and gives it a fresh spin

By Steve Flairty KyForward columnist Lexington author Beth Underwood has shown that she’s capable of turning up her writing intensity to a high level; she can turn it down and soften the tone, too, especially after she takes a little time to cool down. Where her previous book was hard-hitting and full of the pathos of war, her newest, Talk Bourbon to Me: A Whiskey Lover’s Guide to Kentucky’s...