Six Degrees of Mikalee Byerman

A.K.A. The Big-Time Confession, Part 2

In our last episode, we learned: 

  1. Ricky Martin = gay. Kiefer Sutherland ≠ gay.
  2. Shania Twain is CRAZY (in love with her ex’s new wife’s ex).
  3. Mikalee Byerman is CRAZY (crap: no parenthetical content here. I just may be crazy.)

Actually, I guess I should change #3 to read “was CRAZY,” as in past tense. Because as most of you guessed, I did date the ex’s ex ex’s ex…but nope, he is NOT Boyfriend Brett.

So it occurs to me at this point of the conversation that there is an uncomfortable reality about the ex’s ex-ex’s ex that I’ve always avoided: I don’t even want to think about the concept of degrees of separation…

You know what I’m talking about, right? Degrees of separation — like in BEST. GAME. EVER: Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon.

According to Wikipedia (the all-knowing knower of all things worth knowing…), this is a “trivia game based on the concept of the small world phenomenon and rests on the assumption that any individual can be linked through his or her film roles to actor Kevin Bacon within six steps. The name of the game is a play on the ‘six degrees of separation’ concept.”

So, to find a Bacon number (mmmm…bacon….), all you have to do is calculate how many steps (through films) it takes to get from your desired person to Kevin Bacon. Would you believe there’s even a website called the Oracle of Bacon that can calculate Bacon numbers in mere seconds?

(Hey now…don’t even think about it. You can all go calculate Bacon numbers ’til you’re blind after you’ve read the rest of this, k?)

Anyhow, in case you’ve managed to find your way back to this post, let’s look at an example:

Ricky Martin —> Kevin Bacon.

Ricky Martin was in Idle Hands with Carl Gabriel York who who was in Apollo 13 with Kevin Bacon. Bacon number from Martin: 2 (hmmm…interesting…that’s a pretty intimate connection there, isn’t it, Bacon boy????)

So with the crazy connections to various odd people in my life, I am thinking of developing a new game. And with all due respect to the Oracle of Bacon (please picture me reverently genuflecting here), I humbly call it Six Degrees of Mikalee Byerman.

Mikalee Byerman —> Fred Astaire

Mikalee Byerman was (amazingly) Photoshopped into a picture with Fred Astaire (by her awesomely talented reader, kitchenmudge). Byerman number from Astaire: 1 (he is dipping me, after all!)

Mikalee Byerman —> John Davidson

Mikalee Byerman was kissed by John Davidson at a Las Vegas variety show in the mid-’70s. Byerman number from Davidson: 1

(Add 50,488,722 points to your score if you even know who John Davidson is…)

Mikalee Byerman —> Michael Bolton

Mikalee Byerman had a 45-minute conversation with Michael Bolton (mmmm….Bolton). Byerman number from Bolton: 1

(Yes, I had a crush on the still-mulleted Bolton between the years 1991 and 1995: post-Milli Vanilli crush years, pre-George Clooney crush years.)

Mikalee Byerman —> Hugh Grant

Mikalee Byerman is dating a man who looks remarkably like Hugh Grant. Byerman number from Grant: 1(ish)

(That counts! Right?)

Mikalee Byerman —> Vanessa Williams

Mikalee Byerman was married to a man whose father was the best man in Vanessa Williams’ first wedding. Byerman number from Vanessa Williams: 3

(I’m still trying to get her to write a forward for my book, based in part on our crazy-low Byerman number. So far, no luck…)

Mikalee Byerman —> Shania Twain

Mikalee Byerman did the same thing Shania Twain did by dating her ex’s new wife’s ex. Byerman number from Twain: 0

(Clearly, we’re like the same person. With different bank accounts. And vocal chords. And bodies. And happily-ever-afters. And teeth.)

Mikalee Byerman —> Marilyn Manson

Mikalee Byerman dated her ex’s ex-ex’s ex: Byerman number from Marilyn Manson: 2

At this point, my goal in life is to spread the wealth a little — low Byerman numbers mean STOP BEING CRAZY AND LIMITING YOUR CHOICES TO THE ONLY OTHER MAN WHO DATED HER!

(Quick aside: Byerman…Bacon…Bolton…Davidson…Manson. Are you seeing the same pattern I am?)

Anyhow, the ex’s ex-ex’s ex (which is now just getting cumbersome… henceforth, we shall call him “X Man”) and I met at the ball park. And our first conversation was at the concession stand, when I looked at him and said, “Wow, do I have a lot of questions for you.” His response, “Yeah, me too.”

But our conversation was cut short by the helicopter exes, who swooped down and started hovering so close, we feared they may start spinning out of control as their main rotor blades bounced off each other.

So we decided to meet up after the game at El Pollo Loco (which, for you bilingual folks, appropriately translates to “The Crazy Chicken”).

Crazy chicken indeed.

We talked for a long time that evening over our scrumptious vegetables and even scrumptiouser chicken. We talked for a long time on the phone that night. We shared silly inconsistencies in the stories each ex had offered us. We shared hypothesized meeting times (and confirmed meeting times). We shared questions, speculations and assumptions.

Of course, there was a connection based on shared experience. Here we were, five short months after my divorce, nine short months after his, with no answers whatsoever. Each of us had lived the other half of this experience, which allowed us to connect many of the dots at the bottom of each looming question mark.

Only the result of this dot-to-dot was not worthy of a coloring book: neither a silly smiling airplane, nor a My Pretty Pony. It was a hot ugly mess. Also known as a huglymess. 

To this day (more than two years after the conclusion of our short-term relationship), I can say beyond a shadow of a doubt that there was absolutely no connection based on revenge, or spite, or intentionally making The Others (dig the Lost reference?) uncomfortable. After all, why would they feel uncomfortable in the first place? I knew I didn’t have that power any more over my ex, as he clearly couldn’t care less about me based on how he ended our 11-year marriage. 

But he did care. She did care. They made comment after comment about how crazy we both were. And yet, we were just two adults with a crazy common experience.

I’m not going to say a whole lot about the four weeks that X-Man and I dated (and the few months during which we remained very close friends). It was a  bizarre time, yet much of it was  dare I say fun (he did give me the best date of my life. Seriously. Best date ever.).

But let’s just say: The situation did not end well. At all. It was ill-fated from the start, as I kept struggling with the idea that I was dating the only other man in the world who had also had a long-term relationship with the OW in my marriage. Ick.

And while he and I are no longer close friends, he is remarried now, and we do still see one another at games and gatherings. I know where he came from in the relationship, and how we got to where we got that resulted in the bat-shit crazy end of what was a bat-shit crazy idea in the first place.

…which brings us to the pastor.

In the aftermath of this new “break-up” in my life, I received a phone call. From the pastor of my new ex, a.k.a. the ex’s ex-ex’s ex, a.k.a. X-Man. He said he’d like to meet to talk about what had happened in my past and what was happening in my present.

Of course, I was curious. I mean, what could he possibly want to share with me? What did he know? You see, he was not only X-Man’s pastor, but he was her pastor, too (when they were married). And employer (yes, she worked for a pastor, a man of God, a representative of all that is holy … matrimony included. Isn’t that hysterically, side-splittingly funny?).

I remember that day so well. I walked into an office that could best be described as churchy-chic: ‘70s inspired shag carpeting, an old overstuffed sofa and symbolism everywhere. One wall: covered in ankhs. On the other: a gold dagger affixed to a piece of wood with a gold plaque underneath. I struggled for the meaning (since I couldn’t make out the engraving), but I didn’t have to wait long before the dagger was used. Symbolically, of course…

“Did you know the word ‘divorce’ derives from the Latin word for ‘amputation?’” he asked.

“No, I didn’t,” I sheepishly responded, wondering where THE HELL this was going.

“So what would happen if I grabbed that dagger on the wall and chopped off your arm?” he asked.

(At this point, the conversation easily became the strangest interaction I’d ever had with a Man of God.)

He saw me struggling to respond and decided to complete the thought himself.

“Would it be neat and clean? Would I calmly grab your arm, wrap it up, and call a family member to come pick you up to take you to the hospital? Nope, there’d be blood everywhere. Spurting blood. We’d be panicking and screaming and trying to stop the bleeding. The blood would be all over the carpet, my sofa, the table here. The paramedics would come, and they’d be feverishly trying to stop the bleeding. It would be ugly and disgusting and messy.”

(Yip. Strangest convo ever with a pastor. I refrained from trying to clarify why he’d be helping me after he CUT OFF MY ARM IN THE FIRST PLACE, but it didn’t seem appropriate to be so fixated on the semantics.)

His point, I think, was to tell me that feeling crazy in the aftermath of my divorce was A-OK. That is was normal to be frantic and frenzied and not feel myself. Because dammit, my arm was missing. Symbolically speaking, of course.

Anyhow, the kind pastor really was very comforting (despite the dagger talk), and he shared with me other information that gave me a great sense of calm. He assured me that everything I had guessed about the calculating OW and her agenda was right on the money. He knew her well, after all he was her boss. And her pastor. And X-Man’s pastor. Probably Kevin Bacon’s, too…

So as a result of all of the above, I have found myself adding to my ever-evolving list of things you should NEVER do in life. Namely, one should NEVER:

  1. Date the ex’s ex-ex’s ex. Then try to calculate degrees of separation. AW-KWARD!
  2. Wear white sunglasses. (Seriously. NO ONE looks good in white sunglasses).
  3. End a marriage with a brick.
  4. Piss off kitchenmudge (I don’t want to even think about who he’d Photoshop me with if I angered him…)
So now, question time for all of you. Please consider any of the following: 
  1. Final thoughts on the whole X-Man/pastor/amputation story?
  2. Anything to add to the list of things to NEVER do in life? Because clearly, my common sense needs help…
  3. Seriously: Boyfriend Brett and Hugh Grant are like the same person, right? And I didn’t even stage that pic…I took it, got to looking at it and thought “Where have I seen this expression?” Then I found the mugshot…BINGO!
  4. Tell me about my fun Byerman numbers through all of you. For example, because of bitchin’ bloggy buddy Lori Dyan, I know the following:

     Tom Selleck —> Mikalee Byerman

    Tom Selleck once kissed Lori Dyan, who sometimes reads and comments on Mikalee Byerman’s blog. Byerman number from Selleck = 2.


105 thoughts on “Six Degrees of Mikalee Byerman

  1. wordsweneversaid says:


    Your BF is way cuter (I freakin’ HATE that word – but here? It works.)

    If you will notice…
    ‘Hugh’s’ brow draws a line – mystery, intrigue – a line you shouldn’t cross.

    SO much left to worry about and ponder over…

    Your BF?

    He has a (forgive me) cock (slant) to his brow – intimating that he is more open, more flexible.

    I could be wrong and also will most likely be here to comment again – just that my initial reaction is that your BF DOES have a remarkable resemblance to said celebrity – yet – ?

    Your BF has strength, conviction and a strong moral interior unrelated to what I would say is a ‘formal’ religious based belief system – rather – your man seems open and accepting where the photo of Hugh suggests that he would be less so.

    Just my take.


    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      OK, I’m freaking out a little bit. Your analysis of Boyfriend Brett’s cock(ed) brow: totally right on! He’s about as open and flexible as they come, and he certainly doesn’t subscribe to a formal religious-based belief system.

      Nope, he’s the least structured, most accepting man I’ve ever known (well, except of crap from the others. And bad food. And mayonaise…)

  2. Chris says:

    Kevin Costner—> Mikalee
    A friend of mine played some pick up basketball with Kevin Costner at a Final Four tournament. Mikalee and I occasionally comment on each other’s blog. Degrees of separation…3. BTW…my friend said he wasn’t very good.

    Margaret Thatcher—> Mikalee
    I once sang for Margaret Thatcher…a long time ago…in a blue polyester suit…with video evidence of said singing and suit. Mikalee and I occasionally blah, blah, blah. Degrees of separation….not nearly far enough from that suit.

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Re: Kevin Costner — that’s hysterical…and to think he’s been such a big athlete in the movies…

      And I do hope you will some day consider posting a link on a blog or sharing your video on YouTube. I’m thinking it would quickly go viral! 😉

      Thanks for playing Six Degrees of Mikalee Byerman — I’m totally stoked about my Margaret Thatcher connection!

  3. Lori Dyan says:

    GAH! I was loving this post even before I came across my name linked with Tommy (I call him that because we’ve been semi-intimate).

    My thoughts:
    – the pastor sounds nuttier than the ex’s ex-ex
    – boyfriend Brett is a total hottie
    – you need to blog the crap out of your reunion


    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Tommy is yummy. 😉

      Yeah, the pastor — quite a story, huh? Brett is indeed adorable, thank you… (the pic doesn’t even do him justice — I’ll have to find a better one, but I do love the mug shot similarities). And you don’t even know the beginning of the reunion terror. I seriously have a ton to write about — you know how my life is one “you can’t make this shit up” story after another, right? Well this applies to my reunion, too…

      Stay tuned!

  4. Shawn Griffin says:

    1. I am soooooo thankful to be an atheist. I’m pretty sure I would have told the atheist where to put that dagger …

    You have far more patience than this old sailor.

    2. NEVER watch a Kristin Scott Thomas movie. Seriously. Have you seen “The English Patient”? I’d rather get a body wax for an al Queda interrogator.

    Wait, wasn’t the ex’s ex-ex ex a plot for a Harrison Ford-KSS disaster of a movies???

    3. I totally think Boyfriend Brett should pencil in “My Name is Hugh G.” on the reunion sticky name tag.

    4. Six Degrees of Mikalee? Or Six Degrees of Mila Kunis? Carla Gugina? Rhona Mitra?

    The possibilities are endless.

    Sorry, got to go … Brangelina just texted me.


    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Haha…the pastor experience was enlightening, indeed!

      Hey — you can’t diss KST totally. She was, after all, in Four Weddings and a Funeral — with Boyfriend Brett Hugh Grant. But you’re absolutely right about the ex’s ex-ex’s ex plot in that horrible movie — can’t even remember the name right now. I’ve purged it from my memory…

      Brett and I laughed out loud at your name tag suggestion. I think we’re doing it. I just need him to practice saying “Bugger” over and over again…

      Best of luck with Brangelina. Team Jennifer all the way!

  5. oscarvalles says:

    The six degrees of MB was fun. I left to the oracle of bacon site right away though & wasted i don’t know how many minutes on there. Then tangentially went over to imdb to look up actors.

    Good luck on Brett’s English accent. You should have him darken his hair. Then he’ll be a ringer for Hugh.

    Last note: What are you talking about? White sunglasses are awesome, on some people.

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      See — Oracle of Bacon is AWESOME! The funny thing is I can track how many people clicked over from my blog, and so far we’re at 12. I just hope they all came back!

      Good idea on Brett’s hair. And I’m just having him go around the house yelling “Bugger. Bugger. Bugger” every time he wants to swear. (Four Weddings and a Funeral reference — best romcom of the 90s!)

      Ha — I scoff at your suggestion that ANYONE looks good in white sunglasses. Prove it. The ball’s in your court… 😉

  6. Mike says:

    This actually brings a question to mind:

    Did finding out the answers help? I still have some outstanding queries that have never been answered but I’m also not sure I want to know, ya know? I can’t “unlearn” the answers once I have them and I don’t know what effect it will have upon me.

    Is it enough to know that the betrayal occurred? That I wasn’t batshit crazy when I suspected (but *knew* in my heart) that something was going on? Or would specific, truthful answers be beneficial to my bruised ego and damaged psyche?

    Did finding the answers help you?

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Good questions, Mike. And the answers are yes. And no. And yes…

      I mean, really, you’ve nailed it: You can’t unknow something you know. So when I learned a few of the details, I seriously felt even more betrayed than before. Lining up timing and such absolutely sucked…

      But I’m one of those people who wants to know the answers. I want the details. Then I feel I can move on more completely…so it was absolute crap being completely blocked at every turn while trying to piece together this elaborate puzzle.

      I think it’s an individual choice — but just make sure you’re aware of the consequences. Ultimately, knowing or not knowing changed absolutely nothing…but it did give me some closure.

      Best of luck to you. It sucks, I know… 😦

  7. Annie says:

    Boyfriend Brett also looks a lot like Mark Harmon.

    As crazy as it sounds, pastors amputation story is actually pretty good. Creepy, but good.

  8. Heidi says:

    M. Bolton?? Really?? Ewww!

    So to number two…never have a crush on Bolton, as your friends might think you are odd.

    Mikalee to Quantum Leap guy = 2
    He once rode my chair lift at Sierra Summit Ski Resort. He wasn’t very good, but seemed to be having a good time. You and I went to first grade together. Ta da…you and he are practically related.

    • Mikalee Byerman says:


      I HEART Scott Bakula. So excited about this new connection!

      And yes, I realize the Bolton thing is a bit strange. But you already knew I was odd, so I just thought I’d put it right out there… 😉

  9. jlmx2 says:

    As ridiculous as this is, all that is standing out in my mind after reading this is: “SHE WORKED FOR A PASTOR?!?”

    Yes, I enjoyed a few chuckles and love reading your blog. Yes, I already knew you and X-Man had “a thing.” No, I cannot understand WHY the exes would care who or what ( 🙂 ) you dated.
    All I can think is: holy batsmokes, the hypocrisy and self righteousness!!

    Ok, all done.

    Byerman number time:

    Pertinent fact: I enjoy Mikalee Byerman’s log with regularity.

    ~Jennifer Lopez once asked for my parking spot at the beach.

    Byerman # to Jennifer Lopez: 2

    ~I went to school with the cancer stricken niece of Garth Brooks.

    Byerman # to Garth Brooks: 3

    ~I ran into Mena Suvari while shopping in Beverly Hills.

    Byerman # to Mena Suvari: 2

    ~My exhusband worked on one of Eddie VanHalen’s cars.

    Byerman # to Eddie VanHalen: 3

    ~My exhusband worked on one of Anthony Michael Hall’s cars.

    Byerman # to Anthony Michael Hall: 3

  10. Harold says:

    So is there more to dish about what the Pastor said?

    Harold got to your blog through another blog…Harold to Mikalee = 1

    If I wasn’t married I’d be jealous of BF Brett…Okay, so maybe I still am a little! 😉

    Seems like the Pastor didn’t have good influence over Marilyn or she didn’t listen.

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      The Pastor said a lot more. A. LOT.

      But to be honest, I’m hesitant to share much more than I have.

      (Pssst. There are people watching…and reading…who can take things out of context and create more trouble for innocent bystanders, I’m afraid… Got it? Good!)


  11. Michele says:

    I like the Pastor. I believe that people do the best they can with what they are dealt and he was saying the same thing to you.

    Tom Cruise -> Mikalee

    I was in the audience of “The View” when Tom was a guest. After taping he came into the audience and took pictures. I have a picture of us with his arm around me! I comment on Mikalee’s Blog

    Mikalee -> Tom = 2

    Rosie O’Donnell -> Mikalee

    I met Rosie in Toys R Us in Nanuet, NY. I comment on Mikalee Blog.

    Mikalee -> Rosie = 2

    Carly Simon -> Mikalee

    When I was a teenager I babysat for Carly’s kids in Menemsha on Martha’s Vineyard. Never met JT.

    Mikalee -> Carly = 2

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Agreed, Michele — I think he was trying to provide some comfort in what was otherwise a bizarre ordeal. I mean, don’t get me wrong: The dagger story itself was bizarre. But I almost think he was mirroring the crazy of my situation through the anecdote to show that he “got it” in some way.

      Wow: You’ve had quite a few close connections! Was Tom wild? Was Rosie a jerk? Were Carly’s children so vain?

      • Michele says:

        Tom was vert short (even in man heels) and so full of himself. Rosie was very sweet and even bought my daugher a Pez dispenser. Carly was very a bit odd but nice as were her children.

  12. Ashley says:

    I too am curious as to what the metaphorically dagger-wielding pastor had to say about the Ex. More importantly, why was his church office decorated like a pedophiles trailer. Shag carpeting, really?

    Oh, and I shook Al Gore’s hand and literally ran smack into Waylon Jennings in a little meat-n-three (because I’m graceful like that)…so there ya go – 2 and 2:)

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Hahaha…a pedophile’s trailer!?!? Too funny — I think it’s just one of those older church offices that hasn’t been updated in a while. You know the kind…

      So I’m dying, because I had no idea what a “Meat n Three” was and had to look it up. According to (not exactly the all-knowing knower of all things worth knowing, but close):

      “Locally, the Meat and Three is commonly referred to as “Meat N Three”, emphasis on the “N”. What exactly is a “Meat and Three”? A true meat and three will consist of your choice of meat and three vegetables, served along with a choice of cornbread and/or rolls. Add in the sweet tea, which is an art unto itself, and followed up by a homemade dessert and you will think you’re in Mom’s kitchen.”

      Yum. I can totally imagine Waylon Jennings enjoying some catfish, collard greens, corn on the cob and fried green tomatoes at one of those! 😉

      And btw, I did check Wikipedia too, which added this little gem after its description of a Meat N Three:

      “Meat and two veg” is also a term colloquially used to describe the male genitalia, particularly in the United Kingdom.


      • Ashley says:

        LOL!!!! Oh my! Now that’s a first for this southern girl:) Meat-n-threes are rampant ’round these parts (Nashville) and that menu you just had Waylon noshing on made me hungry! Of course now I won’t be agle to think meat-n-three without thinking of a British package!

  13. elysianhunter says:

    Being from the heart of fly-over country, I’ve never been remotely close to anyone remotely famous, so I have no juicy connections with the Beautiful People to share. I am lucky to encounter people in my daily endeavors who shower on a somewhat daily basis and have a full set of teeth.

    My son got to shake hands with Ozzy, but he’s a opportunistic little weasel who will probably make his first million before he’s 25. There’s something to be said for being the Precious Only Male Child. Did he offer to take his old cougar mother to go see Ozzy? Nooooo! But I take a certain delight in knowing he doesn’t realize Ozzy is the same age as his grandfather, either. It’s creepy enough knowing I’m old- and Ozzy is the same age as my Dad.

    Thankfully I’ve never been in the position of even wanting to exchange pleasantries with anyone related to or associated with my ex or my ex in-laws. I’ve not seen any of them or their horde for almost 20 years. Leaving town was a Very Good Idea. Something about walking in on him when he was trying on my negligee gave me the last of several clues. 🙂 This also counts as something you NEVER want to do- walk in on your ex trying on your unmentionables. He would have been a butt-ugly woman. He was a butt-ugly man, so go figure. (although that’s really not fair, because frankly, in the looks department I am no prize either)

    I think I could like a pastor who is into slasher analogies. I loved all the 80’s slasher flicks!

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Oh my GOD your comment cracked me up! First, an Ozzy encounter is kinda cool — though he is old (but clearly doesn’t really know it). So really, since you gave birth to your son and he shook Ozzy’s hand and you’re one of my favorite readers, we do have a Byerman number of 4 here…yay!

      And yes, leaving town is a VERY GOOD IDEA — almost every time! I often lament the fact that I cannot, because there are just too many incestuous circles in this town. Of course, I’ve lived here almost my entire life, but he lived here with me for almost 13 years and has been here since the divorce too…so you can imagine the crazy connections.

      But it doesn’t end with the interpersonal connections — even social media highlights the degrees of separation concept with regularity. On Facebook, there is this cheery little “We’re related!” app that lets you list your relatives. I just recently got a message from “We’re Related!” saying that my ex’s wife is waiting to friend me…I almost died! Turns out, because I’m “related” to one of his relatives (his cousin friended me and listed me as her cousin), and because she has a cousin who is listed as the ex’s wife’s cousin, it seems Facebook thinks the ex’s wife and I are related as well. Um. Nope… “We’re NOT related!”

      And BTW, I’ve definitely added your tip to the list of things to never do. “Walking in on your ex trying on your unmentionables.” Check! And OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD!!! 😉

      • elysianhunter says:

        Almost 20 years later -and my retinas are still burning. Why oh why did I have to see that? 200# of stinky, greasy hairy dude packed into my negligee like so much sausage in a casing. I’m just thankful I wear tiny little size seven shoes so he couldn’t jam those on his meaty feet. He could have at least shaved the ape hair out of his pits before trying on his feminine side. Acck! At least my current lovable dingleberry (and I do mean that as a term of endearment) is content with his whitey-tighties and manly-man velcro tennis shoes.

  14. kitchenmudge says:

    After browsing WordPress for a couple of months, I think I can add something to the list of things NEVER to do:

    (1) Unless the only reader you hope to attract is your mother, don’t ever blog about:

    The regular maintenance chores of your life
    Your kids
    Your vacations
    Your capital Rs

    …unless you can do so as entertainingly as Mikalee does.

    (2) Don’t ever blog about the fact that you are blogging, without exception.

    (3) There might be, in the remote reaches of the Himalayas, some monks who are not yet “social media experts”, but everywhere else, it’s unremarkable. Don’t call yourself one.

    I’m proud to have no degree of separation between myself and anyone I photoshop, but I actually use GIMP (It’s free). Wow. That puts me really close to some major figures. You’re in good company, Mikalee.

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Well crap. I guess my future post about taking the kids on vacation and while there punishing them for not doing their chores by making them practice their capital Rs is trashed now!

      (Um. Seriously, though: Can you give us some details about the capital R post? Because I’m intrigued…)

      And I totally forgot you use GIMP — my apologies! I really have to look into that — I loved what you did, and it looked amazing for a free program.

      Now I’m off to write my post titled “Why I am a social media expert because I write a blog. Did I menion? I write a blog…”


      • kitchenmudge says:

        C’mon, what is the word beginning with “R” that people often rant about in their blogs, with much, much repetition from one blogger to the next?

        It might be a water-going vessel.

        You are excused from the #1 prohibition because you do it much better than most.

  15. Mark Petruska says:

    Mikalee Byerman —> Fred Savage: 3.

    I sold Josh Saviano a birthday gift for his grandmother (aww) while working at Brookstone. You and I are blog buddies. Therefore, your Byerman number for Kevin Arnold is 3.

    John Davidson = “That’s Incredible!” Can you deposit the 50,488,722 points in my PayPal account, please?

    I am going to start using “huglymess” once a day, if possible.

    Are we sure the Pastor wasn’t actually possessed?!

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      1. So was Josh old or young when this happened? I can’t even picture him being anything but that nerdy little boy … too funny!
      2. Your 50,488,722 points will be deposited. Soon, my friend…soon…
      3. I try to use huglymess once an hour. It never gets old!
      4. Well, he was a little fixated on the blood and guts. But there was no head spinning, levitation or Glossolalia (damn I love Wikipedia!). So I think we’re good. 😉

      • Mark Petruska says:

        Josh was young…this was in the early 90s, so I think The Wonder Years was actually still on the air. The truth is, I didn’t even recognize him in person; one of my coworkers had to tell me who he was. Which is doubly funny because A) I was ringing him up, and B) I was a huge fan of the show. I guess it was because he left his nerdy Paul glasses at home (or they were simply props for the show).

        • Mikalee Byerman says:

          I’m quite sure I would NEVER have recognized him without the glasses…I’m so glad your co-worker did, though, or else I wouldn’t even know. Such a close connection to one of my favorite peeps from a totally iconic show!

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Wow … good question.

      I don’t know that I could just pick one. May I have a few? Because quite honestly, the manner in which my marriage ended (discovery of betrayal and all) was the biggest gut punch. But there were so many lows following that day. And just when I thought the pain was going away, it got even worse.

      I do think the most pain I’ve felt was not an instant, but the cumulative pain that comes from watching my children struggle. Especially in light of the game playing coming from the other side — it’s so hard to watch my kids react to that, then get USED to that. Ugh.

      Anyone else want to share their answer to this question?

  16. Shawn Griffin says:

    Let’s see:

    The Pope –> Mikalee

    Dick Vitale had an audience with the Pope this week. Ronald Curry announced to Vitale and myself that he was attending UNC –> Me and Mikalee, Twitter buds

    Norman Schwartzkoff –> Mikalee

    Norman Schwartzkoff visited USS Enterprise prior to Desert Shield. I had a very ill-fated interaction with the good General on the hanger bay. Yikes! 😦

    Peyton Manning –> Mikalee

    Another ill-fated interaction and a 1998 sports blog interview gone bad by myself.

    Harrison Ford –> Mikalee

    I am good friends with a woman at work who previously dated a fledgling actor/Navy Seal who had a small role in Transformers starring Shia LeBouf. Shia starred in the latest Indiana Jones with Ford. Yay! A much more positive outcome!:)

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      You know you can’t do that, right? I mean, come on: You had an ill-fated interaction with Norman Schwartzkoff?!?! Inquiring minds MUST know.

      (And keep in mind, if you decide to Tweet the response, 140 characters at a time, my friend… I want the STORY!!!)

  17. Single Malt Monkey says:

    OK, so, Liz Hurley used to squeeze Hugh Grant’s sausage (stay with me). She runs a farm about these parts and she can sometimes (not often I admit, but when she needs to promo) be found at her farm stall at the market on Saturdays. I once bought some of her sausages from her stall. I susbscribe to your blog. Hugh Garnt -> Mikalee Byerman : tenuous but as near as I can get.

  18. gus3 says:

    “Probably Kevin Bacon’s, too…”

    Best line in the whole thing, because it’s the line that made me laugh out loud. In a library. Hopefully they won’t take out a restraining order on me.

  19. Dana says:

    Mikalee, glad to see the follow up posted! Was Marilyn plotting all along to steal John? Was it a long term plan for her?

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Hey, Dana … well, let’s just say many people think so. Of course I have no window into her psyche (except the comments she’s left on my blog, the fact that she even started a blog in response to mine, her actions with my kids, etc.), but all signs point to “yes.”

      I mean, she has no connection to Reno. Her ex didn’t either. Yet they end up back here. After living in Hawaii. Within blocks of my home. With kids attending the exact same schools…

      And the pastor? He definitely saw a plot, and he confirmed that for me as well.

      • Dana says:

        I figured. That is just so….creepy. But what’s creepier is he fell for it! And creepier still she is trying to morph into you on a day to day basis…

  20. gus3 says:

    Mikalee -> Steve Jobs: 3

    Blog read by me, who once rode Steve Wozniak’s Segway. Woz designed & built the first Apple computer, while Jobs handled the marketing.


  21. Makya McBee says:

    Just after moving to LA, I had Thanksgiving dinner with Geena Davis, who starred in A League of Their Own with Tom Hanks who starred in Apollo 13 with Kevin Bacon who was just mentioned in your blog…so you and I are four apart…

  22. Michele says:

    Did you see The Today Show today? A guy was ordered by a judge to stop blogging about his ex-wife or lose custody of his children. Thoughts? I am sure you have many!

    • Dana says:

      I think he had a right to keep his blog up; however his blog had a different tone then Mikalee’s. And anyway, Marilyn’s blog goes after Mikalee left and right, calls her a psycho ex, etc, , so her ex has no grounds to get her blog shut down.

      • Mikalee Byerman says:

        Thank you, Dana. I appreciate the support. And you’re absolutely right: I’ve never called her “psycho,” and the only thing I do that references her at all is bring up documented and verified facts that others can relate to in their break-ups/betrayals/custody battles. And really, I’ve only even assigned her a name in the first place because others did!

        The reality of my situation is: This blog would never have continued to include her if she hadn’t done all the things that she has done. Bizarre, odd, strange things. Like starting a blog in response to mine. Or leaving multiple comments under multiple identities. Ugh..

        But I continue to write and focus on my next best self. And I’m so glad you’re all along for the ride…

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      I’ve been following this story since the beginning (when the dude had the site and a HUGE following). And here’s the twist: Guess who left a comment on his site about how much she could relate to this man’s plight?

      Yip. That’s right. Marilyn herself…

      I did not peronally want to touch the site with a 10-foot pole, just because this man was pretty demeaning. I appreciate his right to blog, but I didn’t appreciate how he tried to come off as focused on helping others, yet the site is called “The Psycho Ex Wife.” So really, it was about her. And probably aimed at her, though he did NEVER mention her by name. So while his site seemed focused on her, I am trying to focus on reinvention.

      But I did read for the entertainment value — and to keep up on what Marilyn was saying about me.

      However, I was rather appalled at Matt Lauer’s handling of the story (I’m usually a fan). He was entirely judgmental of bloggers in general (even suggesting that ALL blogs are full of vengeful words and spite and venom — I’m summarizing, but that was the take-away). And I loved the irony that the lawyer and psychiatrist were talking about how “lacking” a moral compass people must be who blog about their divorce — yet in my case, the only reason I started was because of how lacking morals my ex and his wife were regarding me (the biological mother) and my 2 children!

      Oh well. The saga continues…

      • Michele says:

        I asked the question not to compare your blog to his is any way – I never saw his blog – but just to get people’s views on freedom of blogging. I thought Matt clearly agreed that it should be taken down and I agree that when people – especially kids/teenagers are being bullied on-line it should be stopped but who is the one to judge? Maybe his ex-wife really was Psycho? It isn’t slander if it’s true – correct? It is a new world with blogging and honestly I think many of the reality shows on TV now are worse than many blogs. When they individually interview people and they say awful things behind their friends/family/etc back. Just an interesting dialogue.

        • Mikalee Byerman says:

          Absolutely, Michele … I agree totally. And I wasn’t really worried that you were comparing our blogs, but I do think it’s important for me to take every opportunity to tell people that I try with all my might to keep this focused on me and my reinvention and the experiences I’ve had. But when there’s endless crazy in my life inspired by external forces … well, that’s surely going to end up in my writing/therapy!

          His situation was clearly different from mine, in that he also seemed to have documented evidence of much of her misdeeds. My ex has absolutely nothing on me, except his claim that I shouldn’t be writing about my divorce (which is just crazy…last I checked, there was an Amendment protecting that right). So I think you’re spot-on that there’s a significant possibility that he (Psycho Ex dude) really was victimized by her (his ex) in this situation…and the judge came down on her side. There does seem to be a slight prejudice favoring moms in the courts these days — though I certainly didn’t see that in my own case. But my guess is, the judge sided with her because she’s the “mom.”

          Ultimately, I hope he’s allowed to continue the blog. But I also wish that blogs like these didn’t have to exist. Treat the other parent with respect as the “other parent,” and there should be no issues. End of story!

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      It’s a sticky situation, Emjay…here’s the deal: SO many people at the reunion admitted they read my blog (most of these people I didn’t even realize knew I existed!). So HOW do I possibly dish about the reunion — and perchance upset some loyal readers?!?!

      Pondering this one…


  23. charlywalker says:

    Mikalee – Tom Sellek (again)

    Daughter was in my daughters high school class, I sat next to him during a back to school night class……….very uneventful…sorry…

    great post!

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      You know, I just had back to school night for my daughter — and as I scanned the room, I couldn’t help but think of your comment.

      How could you possibly focus on the minutiae of homework and lunch money and field trips while sitting in the presence of HIM?!?!

      I have newfound respect for you, charlywalker! 😉

  24. k8edid says:

    Mikalee, you are so funny. The X-Man/pastor post is one of your best. Thank you.

    So for some numbers:

    Kevin Costner —> Mikalee Byerman

    My husband and I slept in the Kevin Costner room at a dumpy motel in MumbleFuck South Dakota, where apparently he stayed while filiming Dances with Wolves…I subscribe to your blog…MB # = 2

    Willie Nelson –> MB

    I met Willie backstage after a concert I attended many, many years ago. I think you are hilarious. MB # = 2

    Bob Seger –> MB

    I ran into Bob Seger in a restaurant in Michigan. I read your stuff. MB # = 2.

    Elizabeth Berg –> MB

    I met Elizabeth Berg (a former nurse and popular author) when she spoke at a huge gathering hosted by our library system. I love her writing – I love your writing. MB # =2, again.

    Also, I’ve compiled 25 Things I don’t intend to to in this life-time. You’ve seen the Bucket Lists. Check out my F*%K It List.

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      You know, I was going to make a dirty comment about the Kevin Costner room…but I think I’ll leave it to your vivid imagination! 😉

      Great, DIVERSE connections: from Willie Nelson to Elizabeth Berg…that’s quite the dichotomy! And I’m totally in love with the concept of a F*%K it List. I may have to borrow that one (and credit you, of course…).

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Agreed. I’ll take a real man over a hooker-seeker (and one who cheated on Elizabeth Hurley, after all…) any day of the week!

      The reunion will prove tricky to write about. So many fun stories — but so many readers who were there…


  25. sgmarinova says:

    Happy that the X man is not your current hot stud BF. Good for you! Didn’t get exactly what happened with the X Man, or are you keeping it a secret? Or maybe that fact that its 1am is not helping my comprehension skills much!

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Nah, you’re comprehending just fine … I’m being nebulous. Or evasive. Or both. 😉

      It didn’t end well. Not at all. But it’s over, and in the past, and we still cross paths every once in a while because our kids are going to the same schools, on the same teams, etc. So I’ve decided to try to protect the innocent here: He was a victim of the situation, too (with my ex and his ex), so the fact that it didn’t end well was not entirely his fault.

      Regardless, though, it was a part of my story — so I felt it should be told…albeit evasively! 😉

  26. Sarah Een says:

    Ahh, Mikalee, I was quite the concert goer when I moved to San Diego and in Hollywood. You now know Metallica, Depeche Mode, The Cult, English Beat, Gene Loves Jezebel, random porn stars..The B-52’s..etc. I had so much fun in high school and still graduated with a 3.6.

  27. caseykayb says:

    I could give you a ton of connections. Let’s see:

    Mikalee -> Kevin Bacon = 4
    Quite a few ways, but I’ll just give one: George Lopez was in Balls of Fury with David Koechner who was in My One and Only with Kevin Bacon. I have been in the second row on Lopez Tonight twice, plus was behind him in line at his favorite donut shop randomly one morning. And I subscribe to you.
    (There’s also the same amount of connection there through Raini Rodriguez and Nicholas Braun who were in the movie “Prom” in which I was a prom attendee.”

    Mikalee-> George Lopez, Joe Jonas, Selena Gomez, or Kathryn Haun = 2
    I’ve been in the second row of Lopez Tonight to see all of these people.

    Mikalee-> Billy Ray Cyrus =2
    Met him in the church parking lot (I go to church with his wife Tish and daughter Noah, but have never met Miley)

    I also know one of the kids from Desperate Housewives (the redhead, I don’t watch the show, so I don’t know who he plays), so there’s some more, too.

    Advantages of living in Toluca Lake/Burbank/Glendale.

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Wow. I mean, really: WOW. That’s a whole lotta connection. I think I should move to Toluca Lake/Burbank/Glendale … my list would grow exponentially!

      So can you give us the scoop on Billy Ray and his wife? Together or divorcing? Nice or clueless? EN-quiring minds want to know!

  28. kathy50 says:

    I love reading your blog. What a great support and inspiration you are to all of us by reminding us that we need to keep a sense of humor about something that isn’t all that funny at times. I loved the story about the pastor. What he said was very true and I have been feeling a bit guilty about the really bad time I gave my ex (in my defense, he didi deserve it). I feel somewhat better about things now. I did see the story about the psycho ex-wife. I was really disgusted to find out that this man’s ex showed the blog to their children. In any divorce, the kids don’t need to know every gory detail. What adults need to remember is that our kids still have to deal with the other parent and whoever they are dating or married to. I respect the way you keep your children out of it. It sounds like your kids are lucky to have a grounded mother with decency and raising them right. Keep on writing..we are all with you.

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Your comment means the world to me, kathy50…on so many different fronts!

      I, too, saw the beauty (if not the slightly crazy) in the pastor’s story. There is a societal expectation that we just “press on” with our lives post divorce, but OH MY GOD MY ARM’S MISSING! How many of us could go through a tragedy like an amputation and not feel it/talk about it/notice it day in and out for a long, long time? So definitely don’t feel bad: especially if he deserved it…

      I could definitely relate to the portion of the Psycho Ex blog story where he discusses how the mom showed the blog to the kids. Same thing happened here: I did all the “right stuff” to keep my kids away from my content (parent controls, marking the blog “mature,” even checking their access at their school, etc.), yet my kids came back from their dad’s home one day and told me that their dad and his wife sat them down and told them that my blog is mean and horrible and I say awful things about him (dad) and her (Marilyn). I then proceeded to sit them down and attempted a very “big picture” explanation about how my writing is talking to people who have been through a divorce, so my divorce does come up every once in a while … but I ONLY write the truth, about things that can be verified by evidence and/or multiple sources. They said they understood.

      But the bottom line: They didn’t even need to know about it. Not yet, at least. One day, I’m sure they’ll read it all with great interest. But they’re just children…

      Thank you for the kind words about my approach to mothering . I couldn’t be more blessed — they have such a worldly yet innocent view on some things, and sometimes I wonder if the divorce itself has inspired this incredibly intuitive spirit they’ve both developed. Or maybe I hope it has … so that something positive (besides interactions with amazing readers like you) can come from this crazy situation.


    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      I know, right? The funny thing is that Four Weddings and a Funeral has always been on my Top 10 list of favorite rom-com movies (even before I met Boyfriend Brett). And I’ve always been intrigued by Hugh…even his “bad boy” side!

      I’ll look forward to checking out your blog. In the meantime, best of luck to you!

  29. dreamersimage says:

    Catching up on some of your older posts Mikalee!
    This was interesting and from observation I have noticed very few people wearing white sunglasses so at least the majority of us do have some common sense..LOL!
    Have a fun weekend! :))

    • Mikalee Byerman says:

      Hey Ed — perhaps it’s a Western U.S. thing? I see them ALL the time. And mostly on (*gasp!*) men!!!!


      Thanks for catching up. I’m glad you’re here — without your white sunglasses…

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