ASH AMBIRGE

Author, CEO & Founder

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How to Lose Your Dignity in 10 Minutes Flat.

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

I don't know if you've ever been to Costa Rica, but contrary to what you may think, one of the greatest things here is not the beach.

Oh no. Definitely not. Nor is it the men. Or the fishing. Or the pineapple that I bragged about eating the other day.

In reality, quite possibly the greatest thing about Costa Rica is—bongo roll—-the shot.

Contrary to what I know you assholes are thinking, I don't mean “the shot” as in a shot of liquor. (See? I know you too well. I know that's where you thought I was going with this.) On the other hand, what I'm referring to is the ginormous syringe of mystery liquid that they inject into you at the pharmacy at the slightest sign of a head cold.

Costa Ricans do not like head colds. Fucking terrified of 'em. In fact, if you have a stuffy nose, you might as well be quarantined. Work? You can't work. You have a sore throat! In fact, you might even die! What you need to do is halt everything and haul ass over the pharmacy, STAT.

And then…………the shot.

I've known about the shot for a while now.

Worked wonders once when I was here as a teenager, shivering and nauseous in 95 degree weather, covered in blankets. My Costa Rican boyfriend immediately left work, came and picked me up, took me to the pharmacy where they injected me on the double.

I kid you not–a mere two hours later I was getting dressed to go to a soccer game in a neighboring town. FELT ABSOLUTELY FINE. In fact, I felt so fine, I want to say I drank a beer and danced on the bleachers. (Total lie, but just go with it.)

I never asked what was in the shot. I didn't want to know. I didn't need to know. Hell, I tell people all the time how I've never even smoked a cigarette a day in my life–wouldn't it be funny if I unknowingly took heroin? (Actually, that wouldn't be funny at all. Never mind.)

So today, on top of having no electricity and no Wifi throughout town, I also happened to wake up with a head cold.

Dun dun dun!

Sound the alarm!

So naturally, the very first thing I do is jump up and down with glee, because I know what this means. I know this means that I now have a reason to go get the shot. And I'm clearly very excited. Oh, the excitement to be had! (I'm secretly just hoping it will help fend off cancer.)

So I walk to the pharmacy around the corner, like any normal person who is unnaturally excited about getting an injection in their ass. Because, you see, the shot is ass-specific. There's no upper-arm shots here. Uh uh, buddy. Drop your drawers and let's get the party started.

And I wait. And I wait. I talk to the girl at the counter about her best recommendations for products you can rub in between your legs so the insides don't get raw and red and DISGUSTINGLY, UNCOMFORTABLY, MAKES-ME-WANT-TO-DROWN-MYSELF-IN-THE-PACIFIC KIND OF CHAFED. Because that happens when you're a chick who's approximately 20.2 pounds overweight who tries wearing anything other than pants while living in a tropical climate. Your fucking legs rub together when you walk. Throw some humidity into the mix, and let me tell you something–this is a much bigger problem than you think. It certainly lowers your odds of mastering the mechanical bull at the dive bar up the street–that's for damn sure. And a girl from Scranton's gotta represent.

Finally, the doctor is ready to see me.

That's right. A doctor on staff at the pharmacy administers the shot. And even better–you have to go in the back, into a private room, alone with him. This seems illegal. But hey–do as the Romans, right?

So you can imagine the look on my face, in the midst of all of my excitement, when I discover that the doctor in the back, waiting to give me a shot right in my ass is no other than THE GOOD LOOKING MAN I DANCED SALSA WITH ALL OF SATURDAY NIGHT, WHO ASKED ME OUT ON A DATE, WHO I GAVE MY PHONE NUMBER TO, WHO I THOUGHT ABOUT KISSING BUT DIDN'T.

Seriously?

Seriously???

*shakes fist at universe*

I can't decide, in that very instant, if I should just roll with it, or back out. You see, when getting the shot, they make you lay down on your stomach on a table, pants down, bare butt exposed. And I instantly don't know if I can do that. Not with this guy. Not with any dignity, anyway. I mean, there's got to be at least 3 dates before you even come close to seeing my butt. This didn't feel right. Like cheating. Or people who skip grades in elementary school. Fucking cheaters.

That said, let's play a little game. What do YOU suppose I did?

Do you think I went through with it? Or not?

I want to know.

Because I'm not telling you how the story ends yet.

Sep 7

2018

One Big, Sexy Question for Instant Clarification On: What the Hell Do I Want to Do With My Life?

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I was reading something on the Internet yesterday that was praising this woman’s work, and I thought to myself: there’s such a difference between doing work and having work. (And yes, I italicized “such” in my mind.) To do work is to take on a task, whoever’s task it might be. To have work, though—work […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired, Feeling Disillusioned With Life

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Oct 23

2012

How to Be a Human.

Oct 23, 2012

I sat in a plaza yesterday, behind La Moneda–Chile’s version of The White House. Diagonal paths come from all directions and meet up in the center, before darting off in opposite directions. People walk gruffly, generally ignoring one another–cell phones, busy faces, stern looks, fast paces. And just like in plazas everyday across the world… […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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Jul 8

2010

When Being in Control is a Disservice

Jul 8, 2010

I’ve got little patience for excuses. I proactively call myself out whenever I catch myself making excuses in order to either procrastinate or invent reasons why I shouldn’t put myself out there. Why? Because sometimes, putting yourself out there is nail-bitingly, blood-curdingly, will-drive-you-to-drink, flat-out terrifying at times. It’s far easier to continue doing what we’ve […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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Aug 30

2015

Big Things Don’t Happen in Big Ways

Aug 30, 2015

. That dot is where you are. ——–>           . This dot is where you want to be. (Which makes me sound like a woman named Bonnie with big hair in a cheesy 1985 Visa commercial, but alas, I’m just a woman named Ash with big hair in 2015.) People have […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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May 31

2018

If Somebody Told Me to Pick a Husband at Age Twenty-Three, I’d Likely Be Waking Up Next to Some Guy Who Can’t Spell “Lemon.”

May 31, 2018

You know why we’re all unhappy and restless and jaded and depressed? LIFE IS BORING US TO TEARS. Boredom is the devil, but most people don’t realize they’re bored. They’re busy working. They’re busy running. They’re busy doing ALL THE ERRANDS and keeping up with those fucksticks, The Jones’. It doesn’t feel like they’re bored, […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired, Feeling Disillusioned With Life

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Jul 12

2016

To the Woman With the Fake Smile: Stop It, You Fucking Pigeon

Jul 12, 2016

Can we all just stop, already? Stop apologizing. Stop saying sorry. Stop shrinking into some small little ball-less version of yourself—you know, so you don’t make all the other ball-less twats feel uncomfortable. Or risk offending somebody. Or do something controversial. Or doing all of that and then totally screwing it up and feeling stupid. […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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Oct 26

2012

I Need Help. (Not That Kind of Help, Jerk.)

Oct 26, 2012

In preparation for my upcoming trip to Costa Rica, Panama & Colombia, I spent $258.92 at Zara Chile yesterday. I walked out with three new pairs of daisy dukes that I will inevitably think look better on me than they actually do, as well as a ripped up white-washed jean skirt, and a top or […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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I'm a Bad Influence on Women

Hey, I’m Ash! Twenty years ago I was a small town girl growing up in a trailer park in rural Pennsylvania. Fifteen years ago, I lost my family and everything I knew right as I became the first to graduate college. Fourteen years ago, I found myself leaving everything behind for a new life in the city where I could be “normal.” Ten years ago I realized normal was the most disappointing thing that ever happened to me. Nine years ago I quit my job in advertising and pursued my dreams as a creative writer. Eight years ago, I built a 6-figure business doing what I love using nothing more than the Internet and my voice. And now, today, I’m the founder of The Middle Finger Project, an irreverent media co. that helps other women find their voice and teaches them to use it to build whatever the f*ck they want to. With a book coming out with Penguin Random House in February 2020 (YASSS, WE’RE A PRODUCT IN TARGET!) I’m proud to be a bad influence on women and guide them into doing something disobediently brave with their life and their career.

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