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Take Five! Spiderman Returns

Five Marvel Characters Spiderman Should Team Up With, Now That He’s Back in the MCU.

If you’re a Marvel geek like I am. You were absolutly giddy over the fact that Sony and Disney patched things up, and that your friendly neighborhood spiderman will continue web slinging in the MCU for the near future. The deal for the short term is that there will be a Spiderman 3, as well as one crossover movie. You may be asking crossover with who? Great question! Here are my five takes on who that hero, or anti-hero, should be.

Take 1: Wolverine

Not just any Wolverine: Only Hugh Jackman as Wolverine will do!

Take 2: Fantastic Four

Spiderman might actually make another FF reboot watchable!

Take 3: Squirrel Girl

A Squirrel Girl movie needs to happen, and Spidey would be a welcome addition!

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Take 4: Daredevil

This crossover would be amazing in my opinion. Almost as amazing as my…

Last take of the day: Deadpool

The comic book version of the Spiderman/Deadpool bromance is spectacular. A Spidey/DP cinematic crossover would be legendary! This team-up would be my top pick by far, and possibly a dream come true!

Have a topic you would like us to take on? We’d love to hear your suggestions in the comments, or drop us an email on our contact page.

Disclaimer: The images, clips and/or videos used here are for illustrative purposes only. All characters and images are property of the original artist and/or brand they represent.

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Take Five! On a Remake of ‘The Princess Bride’

Please note this post contains affiliate links. Thank you.

Here at The Zebra Pit, we do our utmost to educate and commiserate on the topics of health and well being. However, we do realize that not everyone wants to spend 100% of their time focusing on one subject, not even us! In the interest of branching out and sending a little entertainment your way, we will be publishing a new column named ‘Take Five!’ and we’ll try to post them twice monthly.

We came up with Take Five because we want to offer our readers a quick mental break from the pain, symptoms and stress of chronic illness. We’ll choose a topic (suggestions are welcome) and share 5 quick and funny takes on it.

Without further adieu, we bring you the first Take Five!

What do we think about Sony Pictures idea to remake the classic cult film 'The Princess Bride'? Take a look at our five takes on the idea; a new series that provides a fun, brief distraction from all of life's woes!

In our inaugural edition, our first topic is going to be The Princess Bride, the classic Rob Reiner film from 1987. This movie is as close to perfection as one can get. It was a wonderfully funny and romantic story with an amazing cast. This movie is timeless. Furthermore, it may just be one of the most quoted movies of all time. Case in point:

Perfection, am I right? Well, one movie production company apparently doesn’t think so. Sony pictures let it be known recently that they are considering a Princess Bride remake.

Tweet courtesy of Variety

Take #1

Even though Sony later stated that no such plans are in the works, I still find the notion of a PB remake…

Here’s one of those quotes I was telling you about!

I get that people love to see their favorite stories retold with a different spin, and a different cast. Hell, we recently watched the newest version of A Star is Born, and it was amazing! This however is not a movie to be remade, which brings me to:

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Take #2

Nobody seems to want this! Most fans of the movie vehemently do not want a remake, and who can blame them? I don’t want one. Michelle doesn’t want one. Even Senator Ted Cruz doesn’t want to see it. (Oops sorry, no politics). I think the internet’s response was summarized exceptionally by this tweet:

If Dread Pirate Roberts doesn’t want this, who does?

Take #3

Can we all just admit there are no more original ideas in the entertainment industry? Sure, there are original takes and concepts, but no more original ideas. They are gone, done, terminado. If you can conceive it, it’s probably already been told to death. Sure, some would argue against my opinion:

Sorry Miracle Max, originality in movies is dead-dead. Not even true love can save it!

Take #4

Seriously, if The Princess Bride gets a redo, I’m calling the Brute Squad!

R.I.P. Andre the Giant.

Last Take of the Day

One last message to Hollywood about their concept of “originality”.

Have a topic you would like us to take on? We’d love to hear your suggestions in the comments, or drop us an email on our contact page.

Disclaimer: The images, clips and/or videos used here are for illustrative purposes only. All characters and images are property of the original artist and/or brand they represent.

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Pop Sockets: Safe, Convenient, & Awareness Raising

Please note this post contains affiliate links. Thank you.


Have you ever used a pop socket on your smart phone or tablet to decrease hand pain? I’ve seen them around for a few years and was curious, but I never knew what they were called or how to find one and I was very skeptical of how well they’d actually hold up or whether or not my phone would still fit in my pocket.

Then my husband had a meltdown and broke his phone. I was pretty angry because I’d been needing a phone for a while and was holding off to try to save money, but I couldn’t say anything or really hold a grudge about it. My meltdowns have cost us a computer, a big screen TV and an odd assortment of other electronics over the years.

Ironically, a guitar is one thing I’ve never smashed

When my husband kept insisting he take my old phone and get me something new, I wasn’t feeling it. It didn’t seem fair. We’d replaced the computer and TV I’d destroyed because frankly we can’t live without our electronic babysitters even if they do frustrate us into punching, throwing or, during an especially powerful, anxiety fueled meltdown, stomping a flip phone into oblivion in the parking lot just before a psych evaluation mandated by the Social security administration (me, not him).

I will always wonder whether the psychiatrist witnessed that and if it contributed to securing my SSDI. I’m not proud of these things, but I’m finally starting to own them and give up the shame that’s consumed me for decades over my inability to control these outbursts. Realizing I’m just your everyday normal neurodivergent, rather than a fucked up neurotypical has gone a long way to quelling the shame spirals I once fell into whenever these things happened.

We looked at used phones and couldn’t manage to make anything come through. We headed over to Verizon drunk on Avengers End Game victory, just to see what they could offer. Somehow I ended up walking out with a Galaxy S10e, while my husband got a downgraded galaxy version for free. It only brought our bill up a little and we didn’t have to pay anything up front, so I was basically happy.

The benefits of pop sockets, which come in a variety of awareness designs for many many chronic illnesses, such as EDS, ME/CFS, Fibromyalgia, Gastroparesis, Chiari Malformation, Lupus, RA, and so much more!

Only the phone is smaller than my old Galaxy Note 5 and even with a big heavy case on it, it didn’t feel like anything for me to hold onto and it was still too big to work it with one hand. So when I was given a freebie pop socket at pride, I got to see what all the hubbub was about.

They’re fairly simple. Closed, they look like a button that sticks up from the back of your phone by about a half inch. Pull on the button and it extends twice, creating a space to slide your fingers in on either side, creating a better, easier handhold no matter what position you’re in (I love mine most when laying in bed). It makes the phone much more stable and secure in your hand while allowing you to work the phone with your thumb while you’re holding it. You can also use the extended pop socket as a stand, so you can watch a show or read an ebook handsfree. The only problem with my little freebie pop socket? It came off in a few days!

When I decided I wanted one bad enough to try another, I remembered the cute little pop socket I had listed among Amazon awareness products on my What is EDS post, so I found it and decided to buy it despite three major concerns:

  • Unlike the first, would it actually attach to my case for longer than a few days? With my tremors, poor proprioception and tendency to drop things, meltdowns are the least of my worries regarding phone breakage. I definitely need to be able to use a case.
  • Also, would it still fit in my pocket or other tight spaces without getting broken?
  • Finally, would it last?

Despite my concerns, I moved forward with my purchase. Having the first for less than a week convinced me they were too good to do without, even if the adhesive wasn’t worth the plastic they put it on. I could reach most of my screen with my thumb, I could relieve the pressure of trying to hold onto the slippery little sucker and if I could use it with a durable case, then I wouldn’t have to worry about my clumsy ass breaking it in the first month.

Turns out it was love at first use. It arrived in just a few days and I was surprised by how much sturdier it seemed than the freebie I tried. Not only is it the perfect way to represent my stripes, it’s a great way to reduce hand pain and fatigue. I love the design, too. Rosie the Riveter has always been near and dear to my feminist heart and I feel powerful when I look at her and think about all she represents in this EDS adaptation. Better yet, with its purple tones, it matches my galactic geek girl case to a T, so I didn’t have to sweat buying another case, provided it would adhere. Attaching it to my case was no problem, either.

Until Suddenly It Was…

After about a month of use, my Pop Socket popped right off my case. Of course the manufacturer set very specific instructions NOT to attach it to a case, so I take full responsibility. Of course I still didn’t want to live without it or my case. Since my case was only a few bucks, I decided to try to super glue it. I figured if I ruined the pop socket and/or the case, I wasn’t really much worse off and would just replace the case.

Getting My Pop Socket to Adhere to My Case

I applied a generous amount of super glue directly to the back of the pop socket and… So far so good! It adhered to both the pop socket and the case! After letting it sit a few minutes, I extended the button and went back to work. This time my beloved pop socket isn’t showing any signs of going anywhere, making it nearly as unbreakable as this EDS warrior! 😆

I love the added security of having the pop socket on my phone and my hands go numb and cramp way less. I have a more secure grip, which ultimately means less risk of dropping it. Since I decided to super glue it to my case, I also feel like the phone is still secure even if I do drop it.

If you want to reduce hand pain and have a convenient little way to stand your phone up, the pop socket is a great way to go. If you want to raise awareness for Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, I highly recommend this one. You certainly don’t have to glue it to a case like I did mine, but if cases are as important to you as they are to me, it’s nice to know it’s an option and that regular old super glue, available for about a buck a tube, will get the job done. I do have to say, since it lasted a whole month being stuck to something it’s not supposed to be, that it does come with really good adhesive. Had I not gone rogue in the first place, I’m confident it would have stayed when applied directly to my phone for much longer. To order it on Amazon, go through this link: Ehlers Danlos Syndrome Warrior Unbreakable – EDS Awareness – PopSockets Grip and Stand for Phones and Tablets

And here are some Pop Sockets for raising awareness for other common comorbid conditions to Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome:

Already own a pop socket? Tell us what you thought about yours in the comments! If you’ve had issues with the adhesive wearing out, what fix did you try and how long did it hold?


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Pop sockets can really help alleviate the pain of gripping electronics and phones for people with EDS, ME/CFS, Fibromyalgia, MS, RA, Lupus, Arthritis and more. Why not raise some awareness while getting relief?
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Poetry For The Invisibly Ill

All That Matters

It’s the Little Things That Matter
They’re the things that mean a lot
They’re the things that I can count on
When I’m giving things a thought

Oh there’s lots of big grand gestures
That are meant to mean big things
But in the end, they aren’t the ones
That tug at my heartstrings

I prefer the smaller hidden ones
The things that seem quite shy
The little acts that are given out
Not meant to catch your eye

It’s the little things that matter
That make a quiet sound
I love them best from all the rest
They make the world go round

by Pamela Jesssen

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I’m fighting a battle that no one can see
Invisible Illness, it’s all inside me
On the outside, I’m perfect, look healthy and fit
But inside is different, and I’m all over it

Pain is my companion each day and each night
And Chronic Fatigue is something else that I fight
My body is aching, from my head to my toes
How long can I do this, God only knows

There’s a feeling of throbbing in all of my joints
My hands and my feet feel like stabbing pinpoints
I’m shaky and trembling and can’t stand up long
And yet on the outside, I look so damn strong

My heart feels so weary each new day I face
The world ’round me screams I must pick up my pace
But my spoons are all gone and I’ve none left to give
And I’m telling you now, this is no way to live

And yet…

There is still hope inside me, and I must be strong
There are good days ahead and for those days I long
I still have my loved ones who stand at my side
My husband’s amazing, my kids are my pride

My cat loves to cuddle, she seeks out my lap
I love her, she’s purrfect, a warm furry wrap
My garden is growing, there’s roses galore
Hydrangeas, Marigolds, Pansies and more

I’ve good books to read and Netflix to binge
Avengers! The X-Men! Superheros! (don’t cringe!)
A good movie can take my mind off of my pain
And there’s several I don’t mind watching again

What I’m trying to say is there are good things in life
And I have to cling on to them, despite any strife
For these are the things that help me get through the days
We all have our tricks, and we all have our ways

I’m grateful for everything and I often give praise
For the sunrise, the sunset and all the good days
Days when I manage the pain and don’t fade
When I come out on top and know I’ve got it made

There are so many people who are worse off than me
And I try to remember them, for they help me see
that my life may hold pain, but that’s not my whole life
I’m a friend, and a mother, an advocate and wife

I’m able to offer my time and my skills
I volunteer often (despite all my pills)
I help to make healthcare better for all
It’s intensive, rewarding and for certain my call

I blog about Health, and I share what I know
There’s a network of us and we continue to grow
I pray for the cures to the issues we face
and I share education, in my little blog space

So, my life really isn’t all that bad in the end
It’s all about attitude, and sometimes I pretend
That pain doesn’t grip me, fatigue isn’t there
Fake it til you make it, even if it’s not fair

Life is a choice, and I choose to smile
Despite any hardships, it’s just not my style
To wither and whine or to despair with no hope
I refuse to sink down, so throw me that rope

My friend, make the most of all that you’ve got
Life is short and we’re only given one shot
Look to the bright side, and may joy be your friend
From now to forever, beginning to end

There is Always Hope

by Pamela Jessen

All rights reserved. Copyright 2019 by Pamela Jessen. These works may not be reprinted without the permission of the author.

Pamela Jessen lives in Langford, BC Canada. She is a blogger who writes about Chronic Pain, Chronic Fatigue and Invisible Illness at pamelajessen.com.  She also writes for The Mighty,  PainResource.com and various independent publications. Pamela is also a Patient Advocate with the Patient Voices Network in BC.  She sits on 4 committees and one Provincial working group and has also been involved in advocacy work at the Canadian National level as well. Pamela is married to her amazing husband Ray and they have one cat named Dorie. 

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Image of a rainbow in blue cloudy skies over a mountain range. The overlay text is an excerpt from a poem and advertises "Poetry for the Invisibly Ill, 2 beautiful and inspiring poems by Pamela Jessen. The Zebra Pit"
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Poetry: Didn’t Ask

Editor’s Note: This Post was recently updated and republished on 6/19/19.


This poem took the Pongo Poetry Prize for teen poets. Written about her experiences dealing with hypermobile Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (hEDS), the 17 year old poet studies Early Childhood Education at the University of Cincinnati.

DIDN’T ASK

by an anonymous, age 17

Everyone wants to be different,
But not like this.
The struggle, the pain, the guilt.
The feeling that no one understands.

I didn’t ask to be different.
I didn’t ask to be special.

I try to remember to do my best every day because the next day might be worse.
I want to run a 5k.
I want to be on the honor roll.
I want to be a teacher.
But what if it gets too bad?
Will I ever finish college?
Will I ever hold a job?
Will I ever get to hold my own newborn child?
Or will I sit alone unable to move from the fear of getting worse?

I didn’t ask to be different.
I didn’t ask to be special.

But what if this difference can make me stronger?
What if I can be the voice for the people who are sitting alone?
What if I can be the teacher who understands?

What if I can prove that being different made me better?
I can
And I will.

I didn’t ask to be different.
I didn’t ask to be special.
But I’m glad.

*Originally posted by Pongo Teen Poetry

Zebra Pit pinterest image for "Didn't Ask" an anonymous poetry that won a Pongo Prize for teen poets award.