OK, it is no offense to Redneck, but I'm having to root for Notre Dame. I've always been a Fighting Irish fan.
BUT!!!! That said, I am really looking forward to tomorrow's game, either way.
Now y'all know that I'll do anything for my best girlfriend, Tammi. But this bet she's got goin' on with Redneck is cracking me up. I just can't wait to see the outcome.
Winner gets keys to the loser's blog for 3 days.
Damn I love these spectator sports! I really don't give a hoot about the game... its the aftermath I am looking forward to!
First, I want to thank everyone for their well wishes! I'm doing really well, actually. I feel a bit cruddy now and then, but overall, if I were to look at this entire event over my entire life, it doesn't hit my radar. The staff at the hospital was absolutely amazing. I recommend Jupiter Medical Center any day of the week.
Everyone was really surprised how well I did. I give credit to my surgeon and anesthiologist that I was never nauseous or feeling awful. They had me under by 7:30 and by 9:00 they were finished. My surgeon came out and said to my husband he ran into a bit of a glitch, but I was fine and I'd be out in a couple hours.
Evidently my husband looked at him puzzled that here they were finished and yet he said it would be another couple hours until I was awake. My surgeon said, "She's asleep. I mean she's REEEEAAAALLY asleep" and he started to laugh.
Hey, that's what I wanted.
I was up at 9:45 and they moved me back to where my husband was at 10:30 where I told them I had to go to the bathroom really really bad, so they unhooked me and I pretty much bounced out of bed on my own, waving off any help, and did my thing. By 11:00 I was dressing to go home.
I told them the entire time I was in post op, my pain level, on a scale of 1-10 was never over a 1. And although I have moments where I feel cruddy, I've never been 'in pain' since I've been home. The drugs work, but I think I've just gotten really lucky. I'm taking it easy. The biggest effort I've put forth the last 36 hours is moving from the bed to the couch and back. Oh and to the computer too. I've even been stopped from putting my own dishes in the dishwasher.
I figured y'all would like a self portrait of me right now. So I downloaded the appropriate 'figure' and kind of doctored it up.
For some reason, my drug induced mental state can't seem to figure out how to add words to my paint picture, so I'll just make a note of a few things here.
Doesn't my hair look pretty? Yeah. It looks about that good in real life.
Those 4 x's... I got four holes. And my tummy is kind of yellowish with this funky medicine they put on it. And those purple spots are bruising.
I picked the Pillsbury Doughboy because that's what I look like. All jiggly and gross.
Oh yeah, I'm reeeealll attractive right about now!
So if I write like this
With really short phrases
Is it considered Poetry?
Lorcet is my Friend
And if I repeat that last line
At the end of every stanza
Is it considered Poetry?
Lorcet is my Friend.
Campbell’s Chicken Noodle Soup
Does not Rock
The Noodles are icky
But it’s doable, because…
Lorcet is my Friend
My kids have not been eating
The crackers in my house
Because they are stale.
No wonder. But I eat them because…
Lorcet is my Friend
Parched like the Sahara
What is up with that?
Nurses feeding me Graham Crackers after Surgery
Drinking water to get them down.
Feeling like a Raccoon…
Lorcet is my Friend
Yellow stuff spread on my tummy
So they say
I look like corpse
Lorcet is my Friend
Lots of sleep.
I awaken in the same position
I fell asleep in
Life is good
Lorcet is my Friend
Going back to bed
Boys coming home soon
House is quiet
Not much longer
Lorcet is my Friend
Thank you, Thank you. Come back tomorrow when I might wax poetic about the wonders of too many bags of saline and how many times you find yourself in the bathroom in a 24 hour period!
All is well in the House of Boudicca. She's home, resting in bed, sans gall bladder, and chatting with her mother. The Rolling Ball of Noise is spending the night with a friend, so it's unearthly quiet here. Boudicca assures us she's in no pain, just an ache throughout her body from the gas they pumped in to enable them to use a scope.
While the Ball of Noise is absent, I'll play with all their high tech Christmas toys until a bowl game comes on. Thanks again for the best wishes everyone has sent.
Boudicca's BH called from the hospital a few minutes ago to inform us that the surgery was complete, everything went well, and he will be able to join her in the recovery room in about 45 minutes. Thanks for your good thoughts on her belhalf. TGOO
Just a quick post as I have to get up at 5AM and those who know me KNOW I am NOT a morning person. I'm sure sleep will not be restful tonight, although I'm not the slightest bit worried about it all. Head on, like I do everything else. This whole thing will be a non-event. No sweat.
Anyway, just to leave you with a quick thought, GuyK over at Charming Just Charming has an interesting idea. It is NOT a Meme, but I'm doing it and thought maybe y'all should consider it.
The Top 10 people of 2005.
It sure is easy to dwell on the suckiest in suckville, isn't it? But who in this past year, has done something that you think just made your day or made your life just a wee bit easier? It can be someone that you met in the grocery store that did something for you unsolicited. It can be someone saying something kind when you were feeling like crap.
Review your year. Who was it. If you blog, think about blogging it.
I will... after I'm no longer in a drug induced stupor. I've already got 4. Its not going to be hard to hit 10. And I'll give you a clue as to who the first one is on my list right now... and he didn't even directly effect me. Go HERE to read about Otis. I don't care that it was his job... it was a nice thing he did.
Some days, the blog fodder comes from the most bizarre places…
We were sitting at dinner tonight, My Man, my folks, the boys and I, when out of the blue My Man says, “I think I could be Amish.”
Now folks, I gotta tell you, My Man is a good man. My Man is a generous man. My Man is a very handy man. But My May ain’t no simple man. Nuh uh. My Man has a video collection that Blockbuster would envy. He loves nice clothes, hand made Italian shoes, and fast cars.
I’m not seeing much Amish there.
And the rest of this post is so long and crazy… it has hereby been relegated to the Extended Entry.
And so the conversation continues with My Man explaining how he came to this revelation, getting up at 4:30, milking cows, fixing fences (he is very handy), fixing the house, doing things with a tight knit community. And the entire time my folks are adding in something here and there… but me?
I sat there, staring him down, arms crossed against my chest. My mouth could very well have been agape.
Finally I said, “I am a simple woman. I have not many needs. You know that. But if you become Amish, YOU just have a good ol’ time.”
He of course laughed and they discussed the romanticized version of what it’s like to really simplify your life. I mean, this is the man where when I say, “Maybe we should move to Kentucky, he breaks out a map to make sure he understands exactly what surrounds it and researches density for fear there may not be a mall nearby. This is the man that when I talk about moving to N. Georgia or Tennessee, he gives me a blank look. This is the man that when I say, “Maybe near my Aunt in the foothills in Alabama” looks at me as if perhaps people from Alabama are from another planet. This is a man from Newark, New Jersey. Born and bred I might add.
So I’m taking this in as suggestions of our going to a ‘Dude Ranch’ or ‘Working Farm’ for vacation abound. Now let me set this straight too… I am simple and I love the thought of living away from it all, I could even give up my car keys and walk or ride a bike everywhere… but I have NEVER in my LIFE thought working on a farm would be fun. There are farmers in my family. Farming is HARD work. There is nothing romanticized about that. It is sun up to sun down frickin’ WORK. Note those capital letters there. Holy crap.
Anyway, from there came up something about Dairy Farming and how my boys have never been to a Dairy Farm. And The Great Omnipotent One, having grown up in Alabama and having had many cousins that were Dairy Farmers, tells the boys, “If you own a Dairy Farm, you milk those cows 365 days a year. Every day, those cows MUST be milked.”
And talk ensued about one day maybe my boys seeing a real Dairy Farm where they can try their hand at milking cows and this is where it just went off the deep end, if’n we weren’t deep enough.
My 2nd son says, “What’s an udder feel like? Does it feel like a weenie?”
And TGOO not fully understanding just kind of stares at him, trying to process the question.
And off to the other end of the table, I hear Bones’ wee voice say, “I’ve felt Son#2’s weenie. I know what a weenie feels like…”.
And I’m staring appalled at where this conversation is going…
And TGOO finally says, “No. It doesn’t feel like a weenie…”
And now we’re trying to explain what an udder feels like…
To which Son#2, who is sitting RIGHT NEXT TO ME, grabs himself and pretends like he’s milking his weenie…
Except it doesn’t really LOOK like that… it looks exactly like what you think it looks like…
And I’m gasping, trying not to laugh at the horror show of how we’ve gone from my High Maintenance Husband, who I love dearly, telling me he wants to be Amish in his mental escape, to my 2nd son who thinks that milking a cow is akin to a male jacking off…
Except he doesn’t know what jacking off is…
And that leaves me choking as I wonder if in 6 years when he will discover it if this entire conversation will come back to him.
Holy crap. I wish there had been video.
First, before I start this, I really don’t think I’m gonna die on Friday. It’s just become kind of a joke. You know… dark humor. So go with it here, folks. It’s all in jest.
So I had my pre-op appointment with the anesthesiologist crew this morning, and I had to give the hospital my co-pay *cough*, and I was thankful to see that as I dressed for the event, that even though I have way over eaten from Thanksgiving to Christmas that I still fit in my size 4 Gap jeans. This was a happy dance event… no lying on the bed with a pair of pliers pulling up the zipper. They actually FIT. So for my appointment I wore my happy dance jeans, my ‘almost tall as Tammi boots’ (yes, I have officially named my boots), and a brown cable knit turtle neck sweater. Why am I telling you this, you may wonder? Because I decided I like the outfit, having worn it once in Tennessee and these are my new funeral clothes.
I walked in the house after my appointment and said to TGOO and Mom, “See these clothes? This is what I want worn in my casket. Forget the dress I had picked out. I like this outfit best.” I was met with sort of a blank stare and then a shrug from TGOO and an “OK”. Mental note was made, I am sure. However he did say, “They don’t bury you in shoes…” Well that’s fitting since I’m a barefoot kinda gal. I hope someone paints my toe nails…
I outgrew that blue dress I picked out after Joan’s funeral. Outgrew as in… I’ve gained too much weight for it. I informed My Man when he got home, as he and TGOO were on their way out the door, as to what my new funereal attire was to be and he raised an eyebrow and said, “You’ll be dead. You won’t know if I bury you in a dress…” to which I replied, “I outgrew that blue dress. I’ll have rolls. Don’t you dare bury me in something where I have rolls”
TGOO chimed in, “You’ll be lying flat. There will be no rolls…” and at that point Mom and I both made hand motions of fat flattening out and as they walked out the door I yelled after them, “DON’T YOU BURY ME IN ANYTHING THAT WILL MAKE ME LOOK LIKE A BLUE BEACHED WHALE!!!”
Anyway, back to the pre-op visit, where I met the nicest staff. I did A LOT of research on my surgeon and got the best. Evidently he affiliates with some real competent class acts. I was impressed. Of course the real test will be Friday.
Nausea and severe vomiting were the aftereffects after my sister, Morrigan, had this surgery two years ago. So I told the anesthesiologist about it and he made note and said, “Look, it is not some big black unknown as to who gets that reaction from anesthesia after a laproscopy. It happens to young healthy women. I work aggressively to prevent that. It’s duly noted you are concerned, but trust me, I’ll do what I can on my end…”
And most of that I am trying to recollect, as after he said, ‘Young Women’ I heard ‘blah blah blah blah blah’. When he finished I said, “Umm. Do *I* fit in that Young Woman category?”
He looked at me oddly, grabbed my folder, looked at my age and said, “Of course.”
I put up two thumbs and said, “YESSS!”
Yeah. He thinks I’m a whack.
All checks in box. They even did a pregnancy test, which I told them was unnecessary. If it comes back positive, there is an urologist with whom I have a SERIOUS beef.
Anyway, pre-op was two thumbs up, I’m good to go on Friday.
It’s a no make up day. I hope I don’t scare anyone…
So I’m going through the pre-op drills starting tomorrow although the hospital called me today to verify information. A couple things have been running through my mind… other than the whole “I might not wake up from this and wouldn’t that just suck.”
Although from Thanksgiving to Christmas my work outs have not been so good, I typically work out quite a bit, and I do a lot of ab work. You can’t tell, however. I’m a Mom, I have three kids, and it looks like it. My abs are shot. But over the last 3.5 years since I started working out like I do, I’ve always thought, “Well, it doesn’t matter that nobody can tell my abs are in great shape, considering the general overall worn condition of my body, push come to shove, the fact they’re toned under this layer of maternal fat stores has got to help somewhere down the line…”
That’s pretty much been my philosophy for all my work outs along with “What you do to your body now is directly reflected in 10 years.” So as I run or do crunches till I want to vomit or bang out a few sets chest pressing, I tell myself that this is all goodness push come to shove, who cares that nobody can tell. It’s about my physical health. Should I get sick or need surgery, I should recover quicker.
And now the rubber meets the road and I’m wondering if my recovery time is in fact going to be quicker because I can run 8-10 minute miles and leg press 250 lbs and I average 100 crunches of some sort a day.
So I said to My Man the other day, “Do you think that when the surgeon cuts those holes through my ab muscles, he’s going to be able to tell they’re toned?”
His reply was a “Probably not.”
How depressing. I mean, really, this is when it REALLY counts. Seriously. It would make my whole FREAKIN’ YEAR to hear my surgeon say after his deal is done, “It went well and I could tell you work out.”
That’s not happenin’. I can tell.
Anyway, enough of muscle vanity, my boys have been fighting colds, so I’m poppin’ Echinacea like a prescriptive drug addict. I can’t afford to get sick. I can’t afford to have to have this rescheduled. I have my mind wrapped around it; let’s get the show on the road.
And then I started thinking (Y’all must dread that phrase. Y’all must roll your eyes and say to yourselves, “great. She’s thinking again.”), it would suck to catch a cold after abdominal surgery. All the sneezing and coughing. I mean, that would totally be the suckiest of sucky suckville to have some horrible cough attack after someone’s punctured or sliced through your abdominal muscles.
But then I started trying to find the silver lining in this. Do y’all realize I haven’t gotten a good night’s sleep in almost 11 years? With this drug induced sleep they’re putting me in after, I could very well get some seriously GREAT sleep. Holy crap. And I’m not “Just Saying No To Drugs”. Oh no my friends. I’m saying, “Please sir, may I have some more?”
I did that whole natural childbirth no drugs thing and I’m here to tell you, it’s highly overrated. By the 3rd child I’d learned my lesson. What can I say? I am stubborn and slow on the take. So when the nurses murmured to themselves that things weren’t going too well and I was but 1 hour at the hospital I said, “Drugs. I want drugs!” Nobody gave me a frickin’ medal for the first two labors.
I’m no hero. I want drugs for my recuperation. And I want some seriously good sleep…
I'm telling you now, I have not laughed at my computer in horror as much as I did for THIS post over at Drunken Wisdom's, in a long time. Holy crap. His poor sister.
It reminded me of the time I took my boys to a farm and two donkeys started mating. I couldn't quit staring. I mean, I'd never seen big farm animals doin' the deed. Next on my list would be a Giraffe or Elephant.
Anyway, my boys caught it first and I heard a "Mom! Mom! Mom! Look, that donkey is giving that other donkey a piggy back ride!"
I do believe my response was along the lines of "Oh yeah! Isn't that nice of him..."
Heh. But T1G's story is better... far better. *grin*
My folks got the boys these wrist watch walkie talkies for Christmas. Today was the first day of their wearing them. The younger two have been the one's into them. All day long they've had them on, talking to each other everywhere they go.
One will walk into a room and say to the other through the watch, "Can you hear this?!" and make some noise.
I think the real lowlight was when I heard Bones say into his watch, "Where are you?"
To which the reply from Son#2 came, "I'm in the bathroom pooping. Can you hear me?"
Lovely. Much to Bones' delight he got to hear ALL OF IT. Evidently Son#2 held his wrist close to the commode for the event. At the end he made sure Bones could hear him flush.
Some days I think I have no hope.
I was in my bedroom cleaning up my blogging corner, the great corner of my room where words and phrases are continually mangled, when I heard the type scream that always makes my blood run cold.
I ran outside to find my 2nd son sitting in the fort screaming, his finger having been pinched in a Nerf gun. Today has been an ongoing Nerf War with my 3 boys, my 4th Son, and the little girl next door, who at one point said, “I don’t need a weapon… I’ll watch.” The Great Omnipotent One told her she needed a weapon to protect herself and found her one.
Anyway, I grabbed my son up out of his fort and carried him back to the house, with his sobbing into my shoulder. Part of it was embarrassment I am sure for having screamed so loudly, part was the fact it really hurt… and the other part was the fact I was there. Pain always garners more sympathy when the crying can be done into Mom’s soft shoulder.
I put him in my lap on the couch to see what had happened and from the yell, I thought for sure I was going to see some mangled nasty finger needing setting, splinting, and an ER visit. It wasn’t. It was puckered up white flesh.
I said, “Well. When you were little I could just kiss it and it would feel better…” I kissed it and said, “Well? Does that still work?”
And through bloodshot eyes and tear stained cheeks he grinned and said, “Nope.”
So I said, “Sit here then and I’ll get ice.”
I miss the days when a kiss made it all better…
And I feel certain in just 12 more years, he'll want scotch with that ice...
Son#2 and Son#1 got in a small fisticuff the other day. It would appear that Son#1 tripped over Son#2 while they were playing and although an accident, Son#2 sought out revenge and ended up scratching my eldest across the face, which pisses me off to no end as I always say, “Not the face! Not the face!!!!”
So yesterday as we were down South doing Christmas at my brother in law’s, I said to my eldest, “You knoooow, 10 years from now you’ll be dating, and some sweet young thing is going to be sweet on you and she’ll take her index finger and run it across that scar and say, “Hoooooow did you get this scar?” and you will need a more impressive answer than ‘my brother scratched me when I was 10’. Perhaps you should say you were in a brawl with your brother…”
And from there the conversation went, with my folks being wrapped into it and the story got larger and larger from jungles and bears to “I was a fire jumper and an evergreen sliced me in the face as I made my landing.” Of course we had to tell him what a fire jumper was…
And then he was a Navy Seal at one point, but we decided that was supposed to be used when he was MUCH older.
At some point, as Son#1 was sifting through the endless possibilities of stories surrounding his soon to be new scar, he looked at me and said, “Mom. I like the bar fight best.”
Well… it couldn’t be just any bar fight. So my Mom chimes in and says, “You tell ‘em that you were rescuing your old granddad from a bar room fight…”
At which point The Great Omnipotent One said, “Hey there, that’s not nice. I tell you what you tell ‘em, you tell ‘em you were back to back with your Grand dad and we were taking on a whole crowd of bikers in a bar and as we were beating them back, you took a knife to the face and got your scar. I like that story better… grand dad and grandson, back to back, fighting off bikers…”
And I do believe, that is the story that stuck. We shall see. He should be legal in 10 years. It’ll be a story of a 21 year old man going back to back against what will surely become The Hells Angels, with his 75 year old granddad. Heh.
The family was all gathered around the table for Christmas Eve dinner. Food was aplenty and there was light conversation and laughter as we discussed how once again, we would have much leftover.
My Man was sitting at the head of the dining room table, me on the other end, closest to the kitchen so I could spring up and get anything else that needed to be gotten as the meal progressed. Bones was sitting at my right hand, ‘tis easier for me to keep an eye on him when he is within arm’s reach.
There was a short lull in the conversation as everyone feasted and as I had just placed food in my mouth, fork mid air on its way to my plate, I hear the little voice to the right of me add his contribution to the family conversation.
Said Bones, “You knooooow, when Son#2 poops, he is in the bathroom for like 2 hours. He’s in there for a loooong time.”
Silence sat over the dinner table as I stared speechlessly at him, unable to say anything as my mouth was full and I was in somewhat of a shocked stupor.
My Man’s younger brother, sitting waaaay down at the other end of the table replies, “I’m sorry Bones, but I couldn’t hear you way down here. What did you say?”
But as my mouth was still full, although I found myself chewing faster and faster, and now surely in shock over what was transpiring, and my reflexes obviously becoming slow, something I attribute to my fatigue from cooking mixed with the fact that this body is now 40 and just not as quick as it used to be, I could not stop the conversational train wreck as I heard Bones repeat, much louder than before, in a matter of fact tone, “You knoooow, when Son#2 poops, he's is in the bathroom for over 2 hours. He sits in there for a LOOOONG time!”
And at that point, my brother in law, with eyebrows raised, mouths to me, “I’m sorry... I didn’t hear what he said the first time.”
There was a definitive hush as all digested the great announcement from Bones, and then the conversation just picked back up and continued onto a new topic as if this type of thing happens every day.
Which of course… it does… for we all live in Bone’s World.
So I found this link on the top Romantic Hotels. I have to say… I’ve never been to one. Perhaps I am too practical. Although I like a hotel that is clean and respectable, I think I’ve never gotten a hotel based on Romance. Not that I wouldn’t mind staying in a place such as these, should money be no object, I just don’t see myself ever calling a hotel, listening to all they have to offer only to have me reply to them, “Yesss, but HOW romantic is your hotel. I mean, THAT IS the deciding factor…”
Yeah. Not happenin’…
TGOO has not one hair on the top of his head, but has a full gray beard and moustache. We were at dinner last night and my eldest looked at him and said, “I think we need a Chia Big Daddy. We could plant all the seeds and then not water the top so they don’t grow, but water the face so it gets big and bushy.”
I haven't posted a recipe here in a long time, but I'm posting the bread recipe that I'm making for Christmas morning. I cannot obtain Instant Cream of Coconut Pudding here and have to buy it when I'm in the South. I will have to start requesting it from my supermarket. I got my last batch of pudding when in Tennessee at their Piggly Wiggly.
Pumpkin Bread Recipe
3 Cups of Sifted Flour
2 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon
Mix and set aside.
2 C of sugar
2 C of oil
Mix together. Slowly add to the dry ingredients.
Add 1 can of Libby's pumpkin and 2 small packages of Coconut Cream INSTANT pudding.
Pour into 1 loaf pan.
Bake at 325 deg and begin checking after 40-45 minutes. (Ovens vary. It has taken as long as 1.5 hours for a loaf to bake.)
So Christmas Eve dinner is set in my mind. It is a high fat high calorie dinner with a high fat high calorie ending.
I have 11 coming for dinner this year and I although I've been planning the meal for weeks, I finalized it today:
Yellow Tail Snapper encrusted in Parmesan
Yellow squash stuffed with Spinach and Cheese (to die for)
Three Cheese Mashed Potatoes (Thank you Southern Living)
Zucchini Carrot Stuffing Casserole (it may sound icky, but is very very good)
Red and White Wines
Fruit Salad (assorted melons and pineapple)
King Cake (TGOO is making this and has a cherry/cream cheese filling!)
Red Velvet Cake
I finally think we have enough food. I was making myself sick today afraid that we would not. Now I look at my list and think, "Good Grief. What WAS I THINKING?"
My Post on Over-Exposure was a classic case of my commenters being much funnier than I could ever hope to be. I find this to be pretty much the norm for my blog. There are times I read through my comments and find I am laughing at my computer screen.
I think the male consensus was that it depends on the butt that is being half exposed. For the record... she was obviously going CoooomaaaannndooooH. No undies.
And GuyK had joked about dropping ice on some sweet thing once accidentally on purpose and I have to say, when I looked down and saw what she was showing me, I wished I had ice in cup... Great minds think alike and all that!
I told my Mom, "I wonder what she would have thought if I'd bent down and whispered, "Excuse me, but I just wanted to let you know that a large portion of your butt crack is showing... I'm sure you don't mean it to..."" I wonder if she would have been horrified and thanked me or if she would have made mention she had no issues with it.
At which point it would have set clearly in my mind that she was a hussy.
Do they use that word anymore? Hussy. I like it. I may use it more often.
I think people are probably pretty shocked when they Google Images for Polar Express and get the Image from THIS post. It kind of makes me laugh...
I don't know how it started for sure, but I think that The Great Omnipotent One took one of my little yellow stickies and wrote "Kick Me" on it and stuck it on one of my boys' shirts... at which point the boy got kicked by a sibling.
And then Son#2 thought it was hysterical and wrote a sign, keeping in mind the child spells completely phonetically, "Ichy Butt" and posted it on my Mom's back to which I entered the room hearing a laughing voice saying to the boys, "Is this how you treat your grandmother?"
And then I had to sit there and think for a minute, "Oh wait... My Mom is a grandmother." Odd. Very odd thought.
Then the sign making reached a crescendo with Son#2 making a sign for anything that he and Bones could think of, ranging from (this how they were spelled): 'Your weard" to "Chimpanzey Butt" to "I smell like poop". There were something like 10 signs in all.
So my Mom, TGOO and I made a pact that before any of us left the house we'd do a back check. TGOO and I had errands to run, our backs free of 'signage', and as I backed out the driveway, Bones bounded down after us.
Flailing his arms as he hopped down the driveway, running alongside the car, which made me nervous even though I was going less than a mile per hour, he stuck a sign on TGOO's window.
We stopped the van, TGOO handed it back and I yelled for Bones to get away from the van.
Which he did... for a millisecond as he is evidently unable to listen. As I crept back down the driveway I could see him running towards my car (I'm backing up, he's running towards the front), he tags the hood and runs off.
I get to one of my destinations remembering this hood tagging, look at the front of my car and realize I drove throughout Palm Beach Gardens today with a sign on the hood of my car that said, "Ichy Butt".
Nice. Very very nice...
Tomorrow we go see Santa. My biggest fear, as we have waited so close to Christmas and my shopping is complete?
That I will hear, "Santa... more than anything in the whole wide world... I want 'insert item I have not bought here'." At that point, I'll freak.
It's happened before. You think I'd learn.
This is a question for my male readers... or any lesbian readers I might have. No judging here... just a quick question.
living shopping at Toys R Us the other day when I noticed this Mom about my age, but very tall and lean, attractive, a nice body... I am sure my readers who like women would agree... she had that whole flat tummy thing goin' on. She was wearing a pair of low slung jeans... the kind that people shaped like ME should NOT wear.
She knelt down to look at a toy and as I passed by her, looking down to make sure I didn't accidentally step on her hands or anything... I noticed... that TWO INCHES of her butt crack was showing.
Now, ever since I can remember, women have hated it when this happened with men. Women would have conniptions as to how gross it was. It was even called Plumber's crack, which is so derogatory to plumbers. It is pretty consistent across the board... women hate it when men's pants are hanging THAT low that the upper part of their backside is fully exposed when they bend down.
I am sure there are exceptions, but overall, women think its gross.
So here is my question. Do men think this is unattractive for women to expose the same part? Or do they think, "Wellll, heeeelllllooooo therrrre...."
I was just wondering. You know, that whole Mars Venus thing...
Every now and then we get an odd Christmas card that makes the family sit up straight and take notice, one that makes you go HMMM.
A few years ago, we were all sitting in the kitchen of my folk’s home at Christmas and my Mom picked up a Christmas letter she and The Great Omnipotent One had received. She started to read it and it was typical of most letters, happy and festive, but then proceeded to go on to telling us how the son had murdered the father.
I just sat there, absolutely dumb founded and horrified. I mean the whole thing was just awful. And at the end of her reading it, Mom looked up to her speechless crew and at that point, I do believe I muttered, “Merry F*&^ing Christmas.”
Nothing has topped that one. But this year an odd thing did happen.
Every year we get a card from one of My Man’s first cousins. His wife sends it and it is like the ones we send (I’m sending mine tomorrow) where it has a picture of the kids and off to the side it has everyone’s name. Now I include a funny little letter with mine. Hers typically is just the card, no updates on the family and as they live in Jersey, all information we get with regard to the family is passed from family member to family member…
… if we’re lucky.
So I get the card this year and I open it, look at how big the kiddies have grown and as I go to place it on my card stand, I happen to glance down and notice it says, “From Wife, Child#1, and Child#2.”
Hunh. No husband.
So I think, “Hmm. Must’ve been a typo and they didn’t send them back for correction…” and so I grab the envelope and notice it says ‘6 December’. Well, hells bells, they had time to get them reprinted! What is up with that?!
Now I’m thinking something’s not right and I start making some phone calls to family members. To My Man’s sister I leave a message, “Uhhhh, it’s me. I just now opened a card from your cousin… and his name isn’t on the card. Is there something we don’t know?”
I leave a message on My Man’s cell, “Hunhead, I just opened a card from your cousin and his name’s not on the card… is there something you forgot to tell me?”
We have VACATIONED with this cousin! My Man is very very close with his cousins. They were thick as thieves as kids… as you would kind of expect any good Italian family to be.
Last night I got a call back from his sister… it would appear that the cousin is now divorced. My husband was shocked.
I’m sorry. Am I the only one thinking this is weird? This is how we find out his cousin is divorced, through the Christmas card not having his name on it?
And as awful as it is, I can’t quit laughing about it…
I know people come for Bones' stories. Sometimes they slip my mind. Sometimes he just… is. Does that make sense?
Like today, I wanted to grab my camera, but couldn’t find it when he ran out of the house to play, wearing tan camo shorts, a red falcon football shirt with a khaki Hawaiian shirt over it… covered in brown surf boards, and bright blue flip flops on his feet. It was a fashion train wreck really, and I would never have been caught dead in public with him looking like that.
And when he dresses accordingly, I am very thankful he goes to a school that requires uniforms so we are not constantly fighting about attire… as, trust me, that fight gets old.
So Morrigan called me the other day after my post on Bones breaking up with his nose picking bossy girlfriend. By the way, I forgot to post this part, this is a direct quote from Bones:
“Mom. She picks her nose. And that is so gross. I can’t take that. Whenever I see someone pick their nose, it makes me want to faint.”
Faint? Can we say, DRAMA KING?
Anyway, Mo wanted to know how a six year old goes about ‘breaking up’ with another six year old, so I asked. It would appear that Bones sent his best buddy Josh over to tell her while she was playing on the jungle gym. She didn’t believe him, as I wouldn’t either because… I KNOW Josh and I wouldn’t believe anything he says. Hell, I don’t believe anything BONES says. Evidently at that point, Bones walked over and told her “I’m just not interested anymore.”
There are conflicting stories as to what happened next. He told me she was fine and just shrugged her shoulders. He told my Mom that she yelled, “WHAT?!”
Who knows. He is exemplary when it comes to changing his story on a dime, so there is no telling what really happened.
What I do know is that he was telling my Mom today (my folks are here visiting) that if you’re really good, you get ‘student of the month’. So my Mom was singing his praises, trying to get him pumped up to earn ‘student of the month’, which all who know him realize has the probability of exactly… zero, and in so doing she said to him, “Now, Bones, if you get Student of the Month, I want you to call me and tell me!”
His reply? “OK. And do you want me to call you if I get sent to the Principal’s office too?”
I’m kind of horrified that he sees that clearly on his radar. I keep telling him to fly low, I’m all about low visibility, but I’m realizing… he sees going to the Principal’s as an inevitability…
I’m not so happy about that.
It may not be my phone. I think it may be my hearing.
I was at work the other day and was in a telephone conversation with my Tech Lead regarding some graphic representations I have sent to the Wizard in Seattle. I was at a loss as to why a part of the graph was being cut off during a conversion process. And the following conversation ensued, to the best of my recollection:
Me: I don’t get it. Why in the HELL is it cutting off the right margin?
TL: Can you fake it?
TL: Can you fake it?
Me: *after big pause* OK, one more time. I’m so completely losing you and I feel certain you did not just say what I think you said… twice.
TL: CAAAAN YOOOOOUUUUU SHRIIIINNNNK IT?!
Me: OH! SHRINK it. Yeah, but that won’t work.
TL: What did you think I said?
Me: You don’t want to know.
TL: I do. What did you think I said?
Me: Can you FAKE it?
TL: Why would *I* ask you that?
Me: I DON’T KNOW! That’s why I asked you to repeat it. BTW, the answer is no. I can’t.
TL: I’m hanging up now. BTW, *I* can. (much laughter on his end) *click*
Maybe hearing is the first thing to go when you turn 40…
So I have been pondering my death lately. Not obsessing, mind you, just thinking about it, a lot, kinda sorta. If that surgery goes poorly on 30 December, and my mortality becomes reality, boy, it’ll suck to be me.
I’ve been tying up all sorts of loose ends. Keep in mind, I fully understand that I will be fine, but hey, bad things happen to good people and a responsible person is prepared. So I’m making sure the school Treasury books are up to date, work stuff is all filed and put away, bills are paid, correspondence answered, etcetraaaaa, etceteraaaa, etceteraaaa.
I was at the school today paying a bunch of last minute bills that came in before session closed for the break, and I said to some of the staff, “Listen to me. The books will be up to date. If something happens to me, everything will be filed and put away and a back up disk will be on my desk for the new Treasurer to be able to run with it…”
They were horrified.
I continued, “And I paid my tuition for the month of January so my husband doesn’t have to worry about that…”
To which the Vice Principal replied, “Oh. Thank God, because you know… we were all REALLLLLLY worried your tuition wouldn’t get here…”
But as I’ve been talking about this, kind of verbalizing the angst of the situation, I’ve been trying to get a grasp on what is really bugging me about this. And I figured out what it is.
I don’t feel like I can fight death if I’m under General Anesthetic. Maybe that’s why I don’t like flying either. It’s not like you can be plummeting 30,000 feet to your inevitable death, only to stand up and say, “WAIT! I REFUSE TO DIE!!!!” Nope. Last I saw, nobody ever survived a smoking hole created by 30,000 foot plane crash with that attitude. Well, not a passenger. Maybe I pilot with that attitude pulled it out at the last minute, but the passengers were toast.
Anyway, same same here, I think. I figure if I get an awful disease I can make the choice as to whether I want to fight it or not. I may not succeed… but *I’ve* made that choice to try.
But, if I’m under General Anesthetic, I cannot. And that bugs me. The most. I do believe.
So at the end of our day today, I was going from classroom to classroom, getting my boys from their Christmas parties and one of the Dad’s was asking me how it was going. I told him my rundown and I said, “I just need to make sure that my husband can completely survive for a full month without me…”
And his reply was a very serious look and a “Bou, your husband cannot survive a week without you…”
Not a great thought.
Anyway, I know it will all be OK. But it is irresponsible for me not to prepare for the small probability that it doesn’t work out the way the statistics say it will.
Do any of you bloggers out there think about what new readers must think of you?
I was thinking today... any new reader who came by today saw me post on my six year old eating popcorn off a theatre seat with my 8 year old yelling, "You don't know where those butts have been!" and then of course a post on my ripping underwear off my husband.
Yeah. I'm thinking none of those new readers are comin' back. Just a guess...
I got tagged with a Meme by my Blog Niece Lee Ann... so I enlisted help.
The Rules: Name the top 5 movies that you love that say "Christmas" to you. Then pick 5 people to pass this along to!
OK, I'm gonna bend them. I'll say in advance I'm not passing it on... but I am doing it!
I asked Bones to name three and these were his in order:
Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer
Frosty the Snowman
Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer
So I will finish it off with two:
The Christmas Story
Charlie Brown's Christmas Special
Oh... and The Grinch. I LOVE The Grinch that Stole Christmas!
You're a mean one Mr Grinch You really are a heel You're as cuddly as a cactus You're as charming as an eel Mr. Grinch You're a bad banana with a greasy black peel
I could walk around singing that song around my house all day...
Looking for last minute recipes for the holidays??? Well, what are you waiting for?
Head on over to Caltech Girl's where she has The Carnival of the Recipes!
Go! Now! Live on the edge. Try something different! Think out of the box!
SOME MOM at our school got some big brainiac idea that the 3rd Graders should have a cookie swap. Everyone bring in a dozen cookies.
SOME MOM at our school evidently thinks EVERYONE has done their Christmas baking and therefore can just grab into the cookie jar of homemade goodies and take a dozen.
SOME MOM at our school only has two kids, both in school full time, and doesn't work outside the home.
SOME MOM should be shot. After the holidays. So it doesn't scar her kids. Or anything.
So THIS MOM realizes she has to bake a dozen frickin' cookies, on the EVE of her parents arriving for the holidays.
And THIS MOM who thought she was going to be furloughed this week, as contract money supposedly was running out until the end of the year and had put in that her assistant should work as she is a widow with two kids in college, ended up having to work since the Wizard of Seattle had a panic and THIS MOM was requested to come in and fix it leaving NO TIME to do anything like... BAKING!!!
So THIS MOM dutifully said to her wonderful 2nd Son, 'We will bake cookies together'; however, unbeknownst to them THIS MOM HAD NO FLOUR!
THIS MOM proceeded to call her Mom and Dad figuring they could answer the question, "When making sugar cookies, and one does not have all purpose flour because one is a louse of a Mom who is flying by the seat of her pants, should one use Wheat Flour or Bread Flour?"
But THIS MOM's parents were on the phone, so she did an 'eenie meenie minie moe' job and picked 'Wheat Flour' figuring they would taste the same... just more... wheaty.
And as the cookies were baking and that WHEATY smell permeated the air, THIS MOM realized she picked the wrong MOE and quietly snuck into her sweet 2nd son's bedroom where he lay sleeping and whispered, "Little man, do you mind if the cookies totally suck that you take chocolate chip cookies instead?"
And the sweet 2nd Son murmured to THIS MOM, "It's OK, MOM."
And so the cookies came out of the oven and THIS MOM tasted them and declared them the most rancid offensive cookies she has ever tasted in her life... to the equivalent of if they had been a 7 course meal instead, she would have trashed it and ordered pizza... and so she did that... trashed them.
But not before the eldest boy came in, grabbing the last one and tasting it and saying, "Mom, these are bad. These are really really bad."
They were... Wheaty. And bad.
So THIS MOM, as good fortune would have it, had the baking Gods at Nestle's looking down upon her favorably and having bestowed upon her an unopened bag of 'premade break apart chocolate chip cookies pop 'em in the oven and declare them homemade' in her refrigerator.
And so the sweet 2nd Son is taking those to school tomorrow.
And right now THIS MOM really really intensely dislikes SOME MOM.
That I am officially forbidden from buying Christmas gifts in advance and then hiding them until the time comes.
I do this every frickin' year and every frickin' year I lose them. You would think I'd be smart enough to see the pattern and just... STOP! But no. Evidently there is an IQ issue as this continues to be a problem for me.
Let us see... I bought some cool gifts for my sister and Mom in JULY and cannot find them. Luckily, I just remembered I bought them and already bought them something else... but still... it would be nice if I could remember where I put them.
And... I bought something for Morrigan and TN that I just found in my frickin' closet... in a corner, in the back... and I already mailed out TN's gifts so he has another package coming.
And I found LAST YEAR'S Christmas ornaments for my kids that I forgot to take to my folk's house last year. Every year, per family tradition from my side, we get the kids a Christmas ornament to open on Christmas Eve and put on the tree. When they leave home, they get their ornaments to take with them to start their own traditions.
So the kids are getting two ornaments this year. Great.
And I bought my husband a gift in APRIL, my folks were with me and everything, and I can't find it.
GRRR. No more buying in advance in hiding.
I think the other sign here is that I'm going to make a very bad old person. If I'm this forgetful now, can you imagine in 40 years? Good Grief.
In the car today, Bones told me he ‘broke up with his girlfriend’. First, I’m kind of horrified he ‘had a girlfriend’. The kid is SIX. Evidently, as I heard from the mother of the poor lass, they had been known to hold hands and hug on the playground. They were told that they really shouldn’t. That’s fine. Knowing Bones and his need for theatrics and being the center of attention, he was creating an intentional stir.
I never had to care about this stuff with my other two. GRRR.
Anyway, they are ‘broken up’ now. Thankfully. I said to him today, “So, why did you break up?”
He got quiet and said, “Mom. She is really gross and bossy. She picks her nose and tells everyone in class what they should do. Yuck.”
Wait. BONES called someone gross and bossy? BONES. Bones said this. Bones who thinks he is King of this household and from the minute he awakens tells me how to do my job as Mom? Bones who tries to order my day for me, is calling someone bossy?
Bones who while at the theater watching Narnia this past weekend, dropped a piece of popcorn onto the seat of his chair, stood up, picked it up and ate it, to the complete revulsion of Son#2 who yelled, “Bones! That is SOOO Gross! People’s BUTTS have been sitting in that chair and GOD ONLY KNOWS where those BUTTS have been and you ATE that POPCORN? GROSS!” And his reply was a shrug of the shoulders?
Yeah. That would be the Bones. Me thinks Bones should be the last to cast that first stone…
I had a Christmas party to go to this past weekend, a party here in our neighborhood. We had an excellent time.
I did the unthinkable. I actually spent nearly an hour getting ready. I straightened my hair and everything. I did the whole ‘girl routine’, something that does not happen often with me.
Upon walking into the hostesses home, her home decorated magnificently, I said to a friend of mine, “My home is not decorated. I so suck at anything like this. So totally and truly suck. I’m so left brained I walk with a list to the left…”
Her husband overheard me and turned to me saying, “Bou. You are a brilliant woman. Don’t forget that.” And he walked away. I wasn't sure how to react. But I will say, it bothers me much less today, than it did before, that my home is not decorated. He and his wife are great people. They really are.
Anyway, I realized something at this party… I truly must look like death warmed over when I go to the gym BECAUSE I saw one of the guys who works out at the same time I do and he did a double take and said, “Good God! You clean up REALLY REALLY WELL!”
Heh. I go the gym with no make up, throw on a cap, running shorts and a big t-shirt. If it’s a Saturday morning, I’ve been known to literally roll out of bed, rinse my face, brush my teeth, throw on clothes and go… still having pillow face.
It’s THE GYM! Blech. I DO NOT wear make up to the gym. I DO NOT fix my hair. It goes in a pony tail or a baseball cap.
But damn, I must really look pretty bad to get that kind of reaction. That said, I’m still going to the gym like I always do. I go to sweat… not to win any contests. If there is a contest to win, I prefer it to be in the weight training section… my preference… legs.
So I was at the department store today, buying My Man his obligatory yearly gift of… underwear. Yup. This is a post about men and their underwear.
First, let me say, however, as I picked up the box the kind he likes comes in, my husband could still be an underwear model. My Man is 45 years old and he still has it goin’ on. Whooo babeee. I was looking at the model and thinking, “My husband looks better than this…” Oh.yes.he.does.
Anyway, I digress. One year My Man is going to find himself getting only one thing and that is underwear. And it’s not because I think he looks good in it. He does… for sure. But because he won’t buy it for himself and will wear it until it is hanging on his body by threads.
What… is the deal… with that? I KNOW he’s not the only man who does this. I have heard other wives say their husbands are the same way. Holy crap. My Man looks like he stepped out of GQ magazine, as long as you don’t strip him down to his briefs… and then although he looks GREAT in those tattered briefs, they are… tattered. OK, not all of them, but enough of them that I notice.
I harass him about it endlessly. On any morning where I find him wearing a pair of these undergarments with holes running along the elastic, while he puts on his work clothes it is a given that I try to put my finger in one of these holes and pull.
He hates that. I get the whole gamut, “Stop it! I’m getting ready for work!” or “Don’t mess with my underwear! I don’t have that much!” or any other assortment of excuses. Now, I don’t know who he thinks does the laundry, but I assure you, ‘tis I and I think the man has more than enough briefs for me to shred the ones with holes.
He disagrees. He must’ve been damaged at some point in his life to think that he needs 4 weeks of underwear… some latent fear that he’ll run out, having to wear it backwards and then inside out.
And of course as he gives me the arguments why I should not rip his offending briefs off his body, I always counter with, “PULEASE! Do you know how many men would LOVE to have their wives tearing their underwear off them?!”
That is usually met with a roll of the eyes and a ‘Yeah. Right.’ Geez. I guess 14 years of marriage kind of makes things like that not so much of a novelty, but a real pain in the neck!
Anyway, I bought him three pairs this year to go into his stocking. I figure that’s 3 pairs that will disappear from his drawer. Although, I have decided, even though I have never followed through and truly torn them off his body, this is the year. THIS IS MY YEAR!!!
And by my calculations, I get THREE TIMES! Yahoo!
You don’t really think I’ll just go into his drawer and get rid of three pairs do you? Oh no. That’s no fun…
And I figure right about now, every male reader I have is thinking, “What a nut job. Thank God I’m not married to a lunatic like that.”
Heh. Yup. Be thankful.
Eric’s funny post about Black Bart over at SWG reminded me of a story. Surprise.
My brother, who some of you know as Toluca Nole here at my site, is 2 years younger than I. He is quiet and unassuming. If he says something, its best to listen as he does not say much. Ever. And he’s always been the quieter of the family. He has a brilliant mind, extraordinarily creative and a sharp wit. But his quiet ways have fooled some, lulled them to believe that he was one to be able to bully and harass.
As they say, “It is the quiet ones you should watch out for…” and thus is the case with my younger brother.
Now there was a family that lived two doors down from my folk’s home, a family with 5 kids. I’ve mentioned this family before in my own personal run in with the 2nd oldest of that heathen bunch. She was the one that was mean to my best friend from high school. Mean as snakes three of them were, the two youngest daughters being the only nice ones and there was debate in my mind with the youngest daughter in general. And where the 2nd oldest daughter was known for her violence, the only son was the worst. When his name was mentioned, blood would run cold for this kid was a bad seed. He was the Devil’s Child if there was one. Even the adults in the neighborhood knew, this kid was no good.
And so it was one morning at the bus stop when my brother, TN, was to the be latest victim of the Devil Child’s attention. A fight was picked, my quiet brother on the receiving end.
Now what the Devil Child did not know is… you do not pick on the child of a Military Man. In particular, when the Military Man was a boxer in college and an undefeated one at that. Broken noses and dislocated shoulders did not prevent the Military Man, also known around the house as ‘The Great Santini’, from losing a boxing match. And so, when the Military Man had a son, he made sure that The Son knew how to defend himself. And The Son had had the good fortune of practicing just a year before, defending his eldest sister’s honor from a boy who made the poor choice of calling The Son’s sister ‘a Dog’. A good punch to the nose and the misguided boy’s blood splattered and he forever said only nice things about ‘the older sister’.
So when the Devil Child made his wayward attempt to smack down TN, who happens to be The Son of the Military Man, TN gave the kid a few good punches and a swift kick firmly planted into the Devil Child’s groin, laying him out and assuring that never again would TN be the recipient of any harassment.
I do believe there was a profound respect for TN at the bus stop from there on out. Unfortunately, I missed it, as I missed the day he defended my honor against the boy who dared call me ‘A dog’. My brother never picked the fights, but he always finished them off. Quietly.
Flash forward to a couple years ago, the eldest daughter of the family two doors down passed away unexpectedly. Not even 40 years old, it was a tragedy in every way as she had gotten her act together, had a child and had carved out a good life. My folk’s went to the funeral, horrified by what had happened to their neighbors of 20+ years, the loss of a child.
At the funeral, the Devil Child was with his family, a man now, in his mid-30s with a family of his own. He now owns his own small business and was as quiet and polite as they come. My Mom said he was rather unassuming and every word was 'Mr. this' and 'Mrs. that' and ‘yes, Sir’ and ‘No, m’am’ and ended with his thanking them for coming to see his family and his sincere expression that if there was anything he could ever do for them, to please call him. He would be glad to help.
And that is how all those kids turned out… except for the one daughter, who was sweet as pie in high school, she became a religious zealot of the kind they write books upon. But the other four, they became good contributing citizens, holding down jobs and raising families. Polite respectful people.
It makes me wonder what their home life was like… that they were so awful when they lived at home.
*Scripps Research has been looking to move here to Palm Beach County, bringing with it an amazing research facility, some enormous brains, and of course… money that is not dependent on tourism*
As a concerned citizen that lives in Northern Palm Beach County, I finally feel compelled to let you know how I feel about your potential move to my fair end of the state.
I have one word for you. RUN.
Run as fast as you can and do not look back. The troubles you are experiencing now with the County Commissioners are just the tip of the iceberg. Really.
Let us look at the history of Palm Beach County and technology…
RCA was located in Palm Beach County. They closed up shop and now they are gone.
IBM had a thriving location in Palm Beach County. They closed up shop… and now they are gone.
Pratt & Whitney had a thriving location in Palm Beach County, employing over 8000 in their heyday… they are but a shadow of themselves now, having virtually closed up shop and… moved on.
Motorola is located in the S. County and they are slowly dwindling down.
Look, you are smart men and women. Do you really think that these companies would have closed up if they were happy here? If they had felt wanted? Oh sure, when they first opened, they were greeted by open arms, but soon for whatever reasons the relationships soured. There were no incentives to keep them here. locally or from the State. None.
Now, lest you think that I believe these companies were grand well run companies, flawless in all that they did, allow me to assure you, I do not. They were as dysfunctional as big corporations can be, fraught with personnel issues, business plans gone awry, and cyclic down turns of the economy with which they were unable to cope with as best as one might have expected.
But, trust me, their presence in Palm Beach County was never viewed as a must have. Nor in this State. The Governor we have now, who appears to be ‘big business’ friendly, was not the one we had in the past and I assure you, come next election, this can change, yet again.
You have not even had the luxury of being greeted with open arms. While our Governor has been trying to stay out of this mess, while bringing this opportunity to Palm Beach County, handing it to us on a platter I might add, the County has been harassing you to no end, not to mention the pending law suits from various citizens every time you pick a potential home site. The only business welcome here in Palm Beach County is BUILDING business. If you are builder, you can do what you want, but if you are not… oh well.
See, what you don’t know, is that here in Palm Beach County, home of what must be some of the WORST urban planning in the state, we the citizens are tired of our congested traffic and of the new people moving down in droves. The builders own our County and as new homes pop up like weeds in a cow field in the spring, the rest of us have to contend with over crowding of our schools, over stretched public facilities and… most importantly… insufficient roadways. We see no end in sight.
There has been poor foresight at best as to what should have been done in expanding our roads in preparation for the growth we’ve seen. Why did somebody not sit down and figure that there would be a trend of people moving to S. FL as Baby Boomers reach retirement age in epic proportions.
Yet they did not.
So while we all know we should be THRILLED to have you here, and just so you know, I am an engineer, I’m one of those who love think tanks, we see your coming as a double edged sword… Scripps comes and brings with it a dream of biotechnology and smart families with good incomes, but also... brings with it more congestion that our County will invariably handle in the poorest way possible. It is a trend. There is history. We’ve watched it play out.
And as you see, the County is not exactly being nice to you. Nope. I read the papers. I know how they work. This WILL NOT change. They will fight you… every step of the way… forever. On all that you do. After all, your business is not building. Your business is technology.
So my advice to you, advice that I will shamelessly take from Monty Python’s Holy Grail, “Run away! Run away!”
Trust me. To do otherwise, you will surely regret it in time. All of use who have lived down here know it. All of us that worked previously for one of those big 4 companies I mentioned know it. You need to know it too.
The boys picked out a new hamster today. She is BEAUTIFUL. Oh my Lord. And she is sweet. Truth be told, I didn’t bond well with Nibbles. I decided today as we looked at the plethora of fur balls in the pet store that I can’t bond with black hamsters or even black and white hamsters. They remind me too much of the rat that took up domicile in my van a few years ago. That was a BIG BLACK RAT and so now… I think I’m emotionally damaged.
Cuddles is a blonde colored hamster. She’s a little poof of cream colored fuzz and really is sweet. My boys have fallen totally in love with her. Let us hope I do not have to use that frickin’ 7 day warranty.
I told them about it today. I said, ‘Boys. Listen to me. She could be sick and we don’t know it. If she dies within 7 days, we get a new one for free, but I have to bring her body back as proof…”
They were horrified! I realized that if she dies within 7 days, I’ll have to forgo the $4.25 refund ($3.99 plus tax for hamsters that are not black. Rat colored hamsters are $7.99.) and plug her into the cemetery next to her predecessors.
And my eldest, who was so devastated and told me there was no way he could shop for a ‘new hamster’, when approached this afternoon about whether he wanted to attend, looked down at the ground, shuffled his feet and said, “Yeah, I want to go”. He then added, “and can I hold her box in the car?”
OK, so there has to be some big event with this purchase. I mean, come on. We’re talking about MY LIFE. Nothing goes completely smooth.
At work, my engineering group has an assistant. I adore our assistant, absolutely ADORE her. She’s sharp and funny and I personally think that every engineering group needs a non-engineer to just keep everyone grounded and liven things up a bit. That’s her. She’s a Mom with kids in college. She and I can really get to laughing and she calls me, “Mom of the Year” with some of the antics I tell her about.
So, I stopped by her desk this morning to tell her of Nibble’s passing and she tells me that her daughter bought a female hamster once and a week later… it had babies! Holy crap. It had 12 babies and the pet store wouldn’t take them back… so she kept these little hamsters until they died off slowly, one by one.
I said to her, “I cannot have baby hamsters in my house!!! I have ENOUGH CHAOS! Oh Good God. I’d have to plot out my pet cemetery like a real one…” and she responded with a practicality tone, “Oh no, no, no, you just have to dig a trench…”
Great. So when we bought Cuddles today I said to the girl at the register, if this hamster has babies, would they take them? And she said no. And the gestational period appears to be two weeks. So although this tiny little sweet ball of cuddly fuzz doesn’t LOOK pregnant, I won’t know for two weeks or more if one of the 20 big balled boy hamsters in that tank knocked her up.
Can you imagine? Baby hamsters in this house? Folks, I don’t need blog fodder that badly. I’ve got enough.
Oh and my assistant told me that her daughter has a ‘ghost hamster’ in her house! Hey, why not. If people can have ghosts, why not hamsters? She told me about the multiple sightings throughout the years by various people.
I’m not saying yes or no… I think, “why not?” And let me be the first to say, I don’t need a frickin’ ghost hamster either. I can barely deal with the live ones. I have one come around all ghosty and spooky, my kids will wig and it’ll be more than I can deal with.
Once again, I don’t need blog fodder that badly. Really.
Oh… picture to follow of Cuddles. Probably tomorrow.
I thought of you this morning while I got dressed for work. Sometimes the pure aggravation that I would cause you makes me laugh. I could see you flailing your hands saying to me with great enthusiasm and exasperation, “WHat? WHAt? WHAT IS THAT YOU ARE WEARING?!!! TELL ME that IS NOT a sweater from THE EIGHTIES!!!”
But alas, it was. Today I donned a red Forenza sweater and… wore it out of the house. That’s right… FOR-EN-ZA. And not only that… but I WORE IT TO WORK!
Yes. I did. OK, so what does that make it? Let us see… I worked at The Limited in December of 1987, the Christmas I graduated from college. They required us to wear THEIR clothes, which totally sucked wet socks as I was a poor college student as it was and now had to wear THEIR clothes and it had to be THAT SEASON’S LINE, so my first couple measly minimum wage paychecks went to buying clothes for work.
From that season, I am left with that sweater and that Outback Red button down that you hate so much. You know the one. The one where I threw it on one day when you were here and you started to convulse. The, “Why? WHy? WHY DO YOU STILL OWN THAT SHIRT?!!! And!!!, TELL ME YOU DO NOT WEAR IT IN PUBLIC!!!” Yeah. That one. It’s a perfectly good shirt! Well other than the couple holes…
But that’s it. I don’t fit in the pants anymore, you know, child bearing and all that. And the other sweater and shirts I got rid of, except for a mock black turtleneck, which you haven’t seen…
Oh, by the way, that is the year I was completely and totally jaded on Christmas. Men came in on Christmas Eve and said, “I have to buy my wife something. Show me your sweaters” which I did, and then they randomly picked one and said, “I’ll take this…”
And me, the anti-fashionnette, would actually hear myself saying, “Do you want to tell me something about your wife… like what color skin or hair does she have? Is this a color you’ve seen her in before...?”
And they would wave their hand as if they had no time for this nonsense about trying to get a gift with any thought whatsoever, and say, “No. This works.”
That is the year I realized most women are afterthoughts. It’s a “OH crap! It’s Christmas tomorrow! I have to get my wife something!” The mall was full of men. It was so thoroughly depressing.
This is why I make a list for my husband. I’ve even been known to buy my own gifts for my birthday and say, “Just wrap this.” The thought of being an afterthought is more than I can personally bear. Of course I know it is a double edged sword to him, as everything is. He’d like to put SOME independent thought into it…but I feel no need for him too. I am evidently scarred by the Christmas of ‘87.
OH and I asked for a book light so I can read in the car at night when we’re driving and a car charger for my iPod. Oh and new jockey underwear. That’s it. I’ll be happy.
Anyway, back to the sweater. All day as I wore this great, soft, very well worn in red cotton Forenza sweater, I laughed to myself. If you’d lived in town, I’d have stopped by just to model it for you.
And, heh, for the record, I got an e-mail from a male co-worker today saying, “You look GREAT in that sweater.” *grin* Not bad for a 40 year old woman and an 18 year old sweater… Just sayin’!
Hugs and Kisses!
OK, I went HERE to my blog brother _Jon’s of We Swear and he made up a Meme called the “I wish” Meme. And these are the rules:
1. Finish the sentence: "I wish I ..." - - Basically, pretend you had up to three wishes to change something about you. A restriction is that cannot wish to change someone else. For example, you can say; "I wish I weighed 30 pounds less." But this wish is not for this meme; "I wish my spouse weighed 30 pounds less."
2. If you are reading this, you are "tagged" with this meme.
So, my interpretation is, if you’ve read this and you have a blog, you’re tagged. If you’ve read this and don’t have a blog, feel free to add your answer in my comments.
1) I wish I could be 2-4 inches taller. It would be nice to be able to get things in stores from the top shelf without having to ask for help. Two inches. That’s all I need. (Not so sure that came out right…)
2) I wish I could guarantee that our next hamster would last a full freakin’ year! No need to expand on that one…
3) I wish I could make the strife in certain people’s lives go away. They know who they are.
So. Tag. You’re it.
Truly there is nothing like expecting the worst and getting the almost best scenario. Phew.
That’s not to say there was not great grief and a river of tears. There were…both. But I told each boy individually of their hamster's unfortunate demise and one on one, I’m pretty good. It’s when I get all three of them crying and carrying on that I go into sensory overload and can’t deal.
I think the clincher with making the two younger ones feel better was when I told them that any hamster would be lucky to have us as a family. We’re the best hamster family a hamster could have. I did give them the option of selecting a hamster tomorrow, a hamster for the best hamster family in the world, and the two youngest were happy.
My eldest said he’d skip going. He truly is grieving and I feel awful. Its something he’ll have to work through. He asked for a dog. So after Christmas I will begin shopping for an adult dog and as of now I will be looking to either rescue a Lab sort or we’ll be adopting a Greyhound. I know people who have adopted Greyhounds before and they were the best dogs. It is an option I am considering. There will be no puppies in this home. I’m over all baby mammals.
Anyway, so it came burial time. I wasn’t going to wait for my husband as it might be dark and I was starting to wig about decomposition. I wasn’t sure exactly when things get icky and didn’t feel like doing our own personal home experiment on charting body decomposition. I’m really into science, but that was one experiment I wanted to happily forgo.
I grabbed the shovel and the box and told the boys it was time. They came behind me, with Bones running as fast as his little legs could, shouting after me, “Mom! Mom! Mom! I want to seeeeeee her!”
Great. I knew it was safe and she hadn’t started to bloat yet, but I wasn’t sure what they would think when they realized their Dad had put her into a plastic newspaper bag (courtesy of the Palm Beach Post, I might add) and then put her in the box. I mean, with Fiona, the vet had put her in a box, wrapped in a special towel, her little paws folded in a praying position. This was evidently NOT going to be the scene played out today.
So, for closure purposes and so they’d get off my back and even more so I wouldn’t hear about it 30 years from now in some group therapy session, ‘Doc, I really think this all stems from the time my hamster died and my Mom refused to let me see her dead body for closure’, I opened the box and gingerly took out the newspaper bag.
That wasn’t enough. Bones wanted to REALLY see her. Wrapped in the bag it was too cloudy. And he REALLY wanted to touch her. Blech. I could tell Rigor Mortis had set in, something I expected. She was stiff… stiff as a… well as a dead hamster stiff.
I opened the bag and went to gently take her out when she tumbled out of the bag. I mean, end over end, side over side, flip flop, out of the bag until “PLUNK” she hit the ground like only a dead hamster with Rigor Mortis could. I wasn’t sure what to say. I stared at her, looked up at the boys and found all of them staring at me, mouths agape and eyebrows lifted. I said, “oops”. And… they all laughed. Thankfully.
Bones picked her up. I don’t know if it was curiosity or the need for confirmation that she was dead or making sure that the little hamster he had grown to love, the one that was so full of ‘life’ was not what was going in that ground. In that ground was going a very stiff and very dead hamster.
I put her back in the box, picked up the shovel and started to dig. I kept hitting tree roots, grabbing only a cup of dirt at best, moving from place to place trying to find better ‘dirt’ and just as I thought, “I should be thanking the Good Lord I didn’t pick grave digging as my profession because I so suck at this…” my eldest says, “Hey. Mom. I think… that maybe… if you didn’t dig under a tree, you might… not… hit any roots. Maybe you should think about digging here…”
They think they know everything at such an early age nowadays! But, he had a point, so I moved to where he thought it should be and started digging.
I dug a two foot hole with Bones checking every few minutes to see if it was big enough for the box. I was just shocked I didn’t hit water. I mean, I live in FLORIDA. I’m digging a 2 foot hole with a shovel and I think we’ve been known to hit water digging a 2 inch hole with a plastic spoon.
Anyway, Nibbles is buried, we go buy a plant for her marker tomorrow, although I was thinking of switching to cairns. That’s not going over too well right now. They’re pretty set on a plant as that’s what they did for the Fair Fiona.
And tomorrow Bones and Son#2 go looking for Hamster #3. Stay tuned folks. Will the third one do it? Will 3 be the lucky number?
Oh and lest we think my boys are really over it, they are not. Bones asked me to snuggle with him tonight and in the dark I heard his little boy voice whisper to me, “Mooom. I miss Nibbles.” I replied, “Of course you do. You miss her because you loved her. You have a good heart full of love. If you didn’t miss her, I would wonder what was wrong.” And with that, he seemed content, and spooned into my body, grabbing his Ernie and fell asleep.
I think I am calling the year 2005, “The Year of the Hamster”. I’m keeping my fingers crossed on this next year.
I want to thank everyone who participated in my informal survey regarding cooking and eating out, whether it was via comments or e-mail (yup, I got e-mail!). I knew I'd get some comments, but I never expected a comment-o-lanche! And some were first time commenters, so welcome.
OK, it would appear that most single people truly prefer to eat out. The folks that commented that they do cook, cook in big batches and freeze it. Of course you have my loyal reader and commenter George who put it in perspective, "I spend the money I save on boat gas and beer on the weekends". I laughed at that one.
I did respond to an e-mail someone sent and confessed that if I were single and money were of no object (the ones who cook in large batches do save money), I would be tempted to try something different all the time. I'd be tempted to just eat whatever I had a hankerin' for... "Tonight?! Sushi!!!" "Oh! I'm feeling Chinesey!"
That wouldn't last long; however, I am sure.
My Mom cooked every single night and we had a sit down family meal every night and so I was laughing at one commenter, JCK, who wrote, "And was raised with home cooked meals. Eating out was incredibly rare, and McDonalds was a major treat!"
That was us. Once a month, we'd sit down as a family and decide where we would eat out... which fast food establishment. That was the extent and... my Mom was a GREAT cook. I probably wouldn't have wanted to eat out anyway. I'm a homebody at heart and was then too.
I really found it fascinating to read through my comments and e-mail to see what people do... a peek into their lives. Cooking, wine, cooking with a spouse, family meals, hectic chaotic lives where meals are down time, or hectic chaotic lives where meals can amount to more stress, people who love it, people who could not care less...
And what this really also proved to me is... half the time my commenters are better than anything I can put up on this blog. Sometimes I sit here and read the comments and find myself laughing so hard. Other times, my heart has ached.
THANK YOU! Really.
A roofer called me today with an estimate for repairing my roof damage from Hurricane Wilma. Even before he gave me the quote, we realized the damage wouldn’t be fixed until after Christmas because of the Christmas lights. Of course, after I received the quote today *cough* *cough* *choke* *It’s the BIG one! (clutching my chest)* we realized it may be even longer than anticipated.
Anyway, the roofer and I have been playing phone tag and today we finally hooked up, his having walked my roof BEFORE this past weekend. I believe he walked it last Thursday. And the following conversation ensued, to the best of my recollection:
Roofer: I just need a FAX number so I can FAX your quote.
Me: No problem. Look, you do realize that you can’t fix my roof until after Christmas. Christmas lights have been put up since the last you saw…
Roofer: There were lights when I looked. I have pictures right here…
Me: No. You don’t. You have pictures, but that was before there were lights ON THE ROOF.
Roofer: No, really, I have pictures, there are ladders and lights.
Me: Yes. There were ladders. You came when he was putting lights on the house, you know, lining the roof with icicle lights like a normal person. But he has put them on the roof.
Roofer: But there are ladders…
Me: I KNOW. Listen to me carefully. He has since put lights ON OUR ROOF. Let me rephrase this… I am in the flight path for the Palm Beach International Airport. The Airport could use my home as a landmark for aircraft flying VFR. Do you understand? They LINE MY ROOF as in ON TOP. Every gable, every pitch has a light on it.
Roofer: OOOOOHHHH!!! Ooooohhhh. Yeah, we’ll have to wait until after Christmas…
Remember my list to Santa, HERE? Well, don’t I feel like a total jerk.
Remember this part:
6.) No dead pets this year. $38 to euthanize a hamster, followed by a viewing, and full blown funeral has me pegged out on the dead pet meter. Although our Pet Cemetery is officially open, I see no need to use it this year. And if we do, do me a favor and make sure our new hamster just flat out doesn’t wake up. Let me save the cash, although next go round there will not be the embarrassment of randomly calling vets saying, “do you see hamsters???”
Well, it would appear that Santa listened and did me the favor of just 'not having our hamster wake up'. Saved me the 38 bucks he did, generosity knows no bounds at times. Must be that whole 'Christmas spirit' thing.
When my eldest and I went to clean Nibble's cage today, we found her dead. Yeah, there’s nothing quite like ending a day by hearing a whispered, “Moooommmm? Mommmmm? She’s….. deaaaad!”
And I walked over and there she was, dead, as he said. Not quite cold, so she’d evidently just died. And it confirms my suspicions that she was a ‘she’ with some sort of mammary tumors as opposed to a ‘he’ with some funky undescended testicles or something.
The obsessing over hamster genetalia is officially over.
I didn’t tell my two youngest. I’m sorry, but it was 8:30, their bedtime, and the last thing I needed to deal with was the drama of a dead pet. And let me tell you, there would have been some SERIOUS drama. Big. Award winning. Drama.
When the kids went to bed I looked at my husband and said, “Wait, how long is this thing good for? How long before full decomposition starts to take because we can’t bury her until tomorrow? Do I have to stick her in my freezer?”
The verdict was no, she’s in a bag, in a box, ready for burial. But I was really not happy at the prospect of having a baggied hamster body nestled between the Popsicles and frozen hamburger.
So my eldest knows and is a complete mess and doesn’t want to go to school. I am trying to be sympathetic without actually saying, ‘I am not calling the school and telling them you aren’t coming in because your hamster died…’. And if we can even get past how frickin’ ridiculous that sounds, there is of course… precedence. I can’t very well say, ‘You can stay home’ because, not only will the younger two want to know WHY he’s staying home, but when they find out tomorrow afternoon there pet is no longer walking the Earth with the living, they’re going to want to stay home on Friday! I can hear it now. The drama.
I’m over drama.
Anyway, I don’t know what y’all have planned for tomorrow, but I’m hoping it’s a wee bit better than telling your kids their hamster died and the Pet Cemetary is open… AGAIN.
Holy crap. Déjà vu. We just frickin’ did this.
Ten to one says I end up in a damn pet store on Friday… buying another. GRRR.
Until then… I have three little broken hearts to help mend.
Oh and if Santa truly is granting wishes... that one about the sleep is still up at the top. 8 hours continuous, 3 Days straight. No dreaming, no nuthin'. I'm game.
I’m taking an informal poll. Feel free to leave your answers in my comments. There’s no right or wrong answer.
How many times a week do you cook and how many times do you eat out?
The media makes it sound like Americans eat out whether it be fast food or something, nearly every night and I want to know if that’s true.
I have a friend who does not cook… at all. She is my age, has two kids, and they either go to her Mom's house or they eat out… every.single.night. Every time she comes over she says, “I cannot believe you cook. You cook every night. You’ll have to teach me.”
And in my mind I think, “I can’t believe you DON’T cook! Eating out is so expensive!”
My kids don’t like eating out. They want a family dinner, around our family dinner table, with something I cooked, at all dinners. If I say, “It’s Friday night, I’m beat to hell, let’s go out for pizza” you would think I was trying to torture and poison them. I’m not kidding, it is that bad.
I cook on average 5-6 nights a week. I mean really cook, not pull something frozen out, as my kids won’t eat that either. Nights like tonight where I worked, had a Cub Scout meeting after school, a school board meeting at 6 and a band concert at 7… we get something on the go. I had 1 hour to get everyone ready for the concert and help with homework… there was no way in hell I could cook a meal, feed the kids (my husband was meeting us), and wash the dishes in that timeframe with the chaos of just arriving home and homework.
OK, maybe I could have, but I was beat.
So. Am I an anomaly? Do most people eat in? Do most eat out? Is it 50/50? Am I old fashioned by being the Mom that cooks and has dinner on the table by 6. Am I the only one?
We had my eldest’s Christmas concert today. He plays the trumpet and has for just over a year now. I’m amazed at the progress he’s made. I compare him to this time last year and I think the change is staggering. But I feel that way with all the kids in his band class. They have all made such tremendous strides in learning their instruments.
I LOVE kids’ music concerts. I know, some people plug their ears and are horrified by the kid over blowing his clarinet emitting a squeak or the kid on Sax whose reed went bad and so he sounds perfectly awful, or the trumpet player who blew out his lips half way through and now can’t hit that final high note on the last tune (my kid). But I LOVE ALL OF IT. I LOOOOVE it. To me, I am watching the kids get into music. I am watching them wrapped in it like a warm blanket. I am watching the beginning of hopefully a true and profound appreciation of music.
I don’t understand how people could not want their children to learn an instrument. It is really beyond me. You don’t have to play an instrument to have a deep appreciation for music, not at all, but it just lends itself to such a different angle. Even if it’s taken up for a year. Something. Just a glimpse.
I know I put the post up about how I am essentially so left brained I walk with a list to the left, but I do play an instrument. Actually, at one time I played two, the bagpipes (no longer) and the flute. My parents paid for me to have classical flute training for 5 years. No kidding real lessons every single Saturday for 5 years AND I was in marching band AND I was in symphonic band… first chair. Oh and I took it for a year in college, in conjunction with Music Theory.
I just can’t pick up an instrument and play by ear. I can count anything out and learn a rhythm. And I can feel a beat. And I have a good sound when I play the flute… when I’ve been practicing.
And I still play. Some.
Anyway, I owe it all to my Mom. My Mom REALLY REALLY wanted me to learn an instrument. She made sure I started SOMETHING while in middle school (I started on the clarinet) where I played for 1 year before switching to flute. I moved on to the flute when an orthodontist suggested the clarinet was not so good for my already awful bite. I started taking lessons in high school and my Mom drove me every Saturday until I learned to drive and she would sit in that car, for an hour, every… single… Saturday. I am sure she had 10,000 other things she would have rather been doing, but she never complained. She got me involved in high school band, she supported me in all my band activities, it really is my Mom who is the reason I have the appreciation for music that I have.
And… she didn’t play an instrument growing up. She just saw the importance of it and maybe she really wanted to play but she didn’t have the opportunities. My MOM made sure these opportunities were there for me and she made sure I took them.
I’m glad she did. I went through spells where I didn’t pick up my flute. Years perhaps. But, I still know how to play. It is mine. And when I am in the mood, I can play, and nobody can take that from me.
And I firmly believe it helped me to develop my analytical thinking. Music is like math to me… there are no maybe’s or gray areas. It just… is.
So, that said, some things I will bring up to the music director as I just KNOOOOW he must love having parents give him little tips:
1) First year students, really need to be discouraged from playing the French Horn. This is the 2nd year I’ve watched a kid pick it as their instrument (we start band in 4th grade mind you, it’s a NINE YEAR OLD), only to be so frustrated they crash and burn. It may look all cool, all curly and funky shaped, but getting air into that ‘curly and funky shaped’ is a real pain in the neck.
2) The girls when performing at their concerts, when they are informed they must wear skirts on stage, must be taught how to sit in a skirt… while sitting on a stage! Yikes!
3) We need to take video of their first performance and their last performance… so they can see and hear the progress they made at the end of the year. Sometimes when you live it, you cannot see it.
I found this over at Caltechgirl's. I still owe her a picture of our hamster's genetalia as she IS the expert on rodent genetalia. For those not in the know, we're unsure if we have a boy hamster with some funky undescended testicle thing going on or a girl hamster with what the boys call 'a funky butt' which would amount to me as 'tumors'. Just a lovely thought.
I just had to share. Again.
I’m going to be a wee bit cynical and ugly here, so feel free to jump in and show me the error of my ways… should I be wrong.
Christmas falls on a Sunday this year, so a couple of the BIG churches in town have canceled their Sunday services so that their congregants can spend more ‘family time’ on Christmas.
OK. I’m struggling with this here, folks.
First, let me repeat for those who do not know, my husband is a devout Catholic. He comes from a family of devout Catholics. They’re not Christmas/Easter Catholics as in, Christmas and Easter are they only times they go, they’re ‘all year round’ Catholics and most of his family tries really hard to make it to every Holy Day of Obligation, although my husband doesn’t. He goes every single Sunday, even when we’re on vacation, and Christmas and Easter. (His mother went to Mass every day and died in church.)
Second, I do not go to Church. I have issues with organized religion, but am Episcopal. For some odd reason, with as many issues as I have with the whole ‘Man rises from the Dead’ thing, I take great comfort in the Episcopal Church and when I need to clear my head or am just really in a bad spot, I’ll sometimes catch a service. I pray all the time in general.
Third, my husband takes my boys to Church with him every time. My boys are Catholic. There have been times at Easter and Christmas when he’s known that every Christmas/Easter Catholic will be jamming the streets, church and pews, not having enough room for those who go all the time, and creating massive chaos, so he’ll leave the boys at home. It has nothing to do with Santa or the Easter bunny. As he puts it, “It’s bad enough for me to try to find a seat for one… finding a seat for four is nearly impossible unless I get there 30 minutes early, but then the parking lot is overflowing and it puts me in an awful mood… and I’m supposed to be uplifted in going, not feeling grouchy.”
So there you have it. In summary, my husband goes all the time, I never go, my kids go all the time with an occasional skipping of Christmas and Easter due only to the chaos created when people who don’t normally go, do.
Now, for as long as I can remember, the churches both Protestant and Catholic, have been wringing their hands over the secularization of Christmas. “The Spirit of Christmas is being lost!” they say. “It’s become too commercialized!”, they proclaim. “Put the CHRIST back in Christmas!!!” they shout!
But now, some of these people are canceling their Christmas services so… there is more family time.
Wait. Let us look at what family time amounts to on Christmas morning. Kids wake up way too early. Mom and Dad drag their tired butts out of bed. Mom and Dad drink lots of coffee and turn on music and the ‘Christmas tree’, and kids open ‘Christmas stockings’ and gifts brought by ‘Santa’. Then everyone sits down and eats breakfast and the kids play with their ‘toys’ brought by ‘Santa’.
I’m not seeing a whole lot of ‘true spirit of Christmas’ in that scene. I’m seeing a whole heapin’ lot of secular activity.
Now to make up for the fact that these churches are not having ‘Christmas Day services’, they are offering 13 services during the two days BEFORE Christmas. But, last I read, Christians believed that Christ was born on December 25th, not the 24th or 23rd, even though it wasn’t really in December, but April, but that’s a whole other issue.
But now these Big Churches with congregations of close to 18,000 (yes you read that right) will go ahead and say, “It’s OK, we’ll celebrate two days in advance, for more ‘family time’.”
I think maybe all those congregants that think this is an ‘OK solution’ need to think about for the following year, celebrating ALL family birthdays two days in advance. You know, continuity and all that.
Tell me folks, am I the only one who is seeing this as hugely hypocritical? On one hand we have them screaming ‘DON’T LET CHRISTMAS GET OVER RUN BY OUR SECULAR SOCIETY!!!’, yet on the other hand, ‘We’re going to celebrate Christmas in church, the place we worship Christ our Savior, a day to two days in advance so families have more time around their fake Christmas trees, opening gifts from a myth that has been propagated by our secular society, and their kids can play with their toys.”
Am I missing something? Just wondering…
Many years ago, many many years ago, when I worked at Company X, I had a job that required, in my mind, not much higher thinking. The USAF’s computer system for the propulsion system I was working was not functioning yet, and Company X had the data and the capability of assessing all performance data for the USAF.
My job? I would sift through sortie after sortie, looking through cycles and operating time, and hot time, and transient data for every single system. I would spend HOURS and HOURS and I’d calculate and run programs, and plot graphs, and analyze data. Then I’d put it in a spreadsheet and send it off to the USAF.
It was a rather thankless job, truth be told. I was just a data geek that nobody paid much attention to unless something went BAD and then of course I was woman of the hour. That didn’t happen much, thankfully. And at the time, I do believe we were in Bosnia, so if something looked really bad, I’d call Ramstein and give them a heads up.
I did this for a long time and finally I said to my boss, “A monkey could do my job. This requires no intellectual thought whatsoever. I need to do something else.”
He argued with me repeatedly and said I was selling myself short. But I was steadfast in my thoughts that this was a mundane job that I could teach anyone to do, anyone can see a pattern, and anyone can follow through on something suspicious.
And so it was set, that I was to train our assistant to take my job. I kept saying, ‘This is an aide’s job. This is not an engineer’s job.’ There were other engineering jobs that I found enticing. I wanted to try them.
Hour after hour I spent with her. And for some reason, it just never really ‘clicked’. She was a bright woman. There had been an aide in another group that had been assisting me in this project for years, he was a mechanic and he was sharp. Really sharp. I remembered when I sat down with him… hour after hour I spent with him… and it just never really ‘clicked’.
And to this day, I do not believe it was their lack of education. To this day I think that not everyone thinks the same way. My brain is very analytical. I know what I see. I see things in numbers others may not. I see patterns and relationships. I see logic.
I cannot hypothesize in theoretical mathematics. I cannot invent. I am not artistic. I cannot memorize lyrics. I cannot write poetry. I cannot play music by ear or from the heart… only analytically and rhythmically.
My brain is steeped in concrete logic, black and white, binary. It is frustrating as hell sometimes. There are times I think I can break free, and maybe a small step can be taken in the other direction, but it is a struggle, a large struggle, one that can be maddening.
And I think sometimes, I regret actually, that I did that to my assistant. She was doomed to fail. It was not the way she thought and yet I expected that it would be. How could something so easy for me, something that was boring me to tears, not be so easy for everyone else? Afterall, I’ve never felt that there was anything particularly special about me.
It was a lesson to me in a managerial way. Everyone brings to the table their own set of talents. It is up to the person managing the people to understand what every player’s talent is, how to utilize it best, and to ensure everyone respects everyone else’s talents.
One is not better, one is not worse… but I really really wish I could be a little less concrete sometimes… a little more… from the heart. I wish I could hear a song and remember all the lyrics. I wish I could hold a tune or pick up an instrument and play by ear. I wish I could interpret poetry. I wish I could think of a convoluted story, with 3 dimensional characters that people care about and WANT to know what happens to them.
But that is not me. And I have come to realize, that this world needs people like me too. Just sometimes I have to remind myself.
Heard from my boys today as they were riding scooters and bikes, playing some 'spy/cops/bad guy' game:
"You better watch your step buster! You're nothing but a Marsupial!"
What an interesting choice of words. I gather that being a Marsupial is a bad thing... and to think I was rather enjoying my pouch status in the Ecosystem after The Bear revamped it.
Hunh. I guess I'm supposed to be horrified???
There has been some question in my comments with regard to how the State of Florida can allow the eminent domain to occur in Riviera Beach.
From what I understand, if an area is considered 'blighted' the land can be taken/bought. I may be wrong, but I do believe this is what I've read.
A study was done to show the area that the people supporting the 'rejuvenation' of Riviera Beach wanted was 'blighted'. As we all know, any study can be made to look any way that someone wants it. This data has been looked at and there are big holes in the study.
But... the study has been done, calling the area 'blighted' and to be honest, I think it sounds like a done deal, no matter how poorly accomplished the study has proven to be.
Our local paper did a big front page article today on how it is finally becoming a national issue. The Palm Beach Post has been writing on this for long long time. This latest article brings it all to the forefront again.
I came home yesterday with the boys from their Boy Scout day camp to find my husband had been on the roof stringing lights.
He did this with me not at home, which doesn't make me happy. But I have said nothing.
This started about 5 years ago. He was on the roof, outlining it and adding lights here and there. Whereas it was not as bad as Chevy Chase's Christmas movie, there was fear that it had potential.
I came outside, 2 pre-schoolers running around me in circles and a baby on my hip and yelled up to him on the roof, "What in the HELL are you doing?"
"Lighting the roof this year", came the reply.
"I sure as hell hope your disability insurance is paid up because I'm good for about minimum wage right about now!!!", came the shrill from his loving wife.
"Oh thats real nice," he said, "you only care about what kind of disability money I have? You don't care if I break my neck or kill myself?"
I shouted back, "Damn straight!" and I walked back into the house, gingerly shutting the front door, lest slamming it cause the roof to shake causing him to fall off.
What a lunatic.
You know your spouse may have succumbed to the Annual Christmas Light Psychoses when...
There are so many lights on the house, there are certain rooms in the house you cannot use the electrical outlets or you brown out half the house.
When you are running errands and you get a panicked phone call on your cell from your spouse saying, 'Hon! Before you come home, can you stop by Target and pick me up FIVE more boxes of red lights?"
And then you go to three stores, knowing how important it is, but can only find 1 box, so you know that you will now add to your 'things to do list' tomorrow to find four more boxes of red lights for your spouse.
When you have to use the restroom after 7PM and you go into the small commode room and don't have to turn on the light to use the bathroom and there is actually so much light coming in from the windows you think, "Hell, I could frickin' read in here..."
When you go to shower and you realize there is so much light in the bathroom that you can shower and shave your legs without turning on the light.
When the neighbors across the street come over to comment that this year may very well beat last year.
When your husband says, "OK, we can't get the roof fixed from the hurricane until after Christmas now because I put lights on the roof..."
When you realize that he's nowhere near complete and already you have the most lit up home in the neighborhood...
It would seem that one of my Bear Cubs from my Cub Scout troop (age 8), was playing hide 'n seek with Bones...they were partners in hiding.
And it would seem that as they were running through the brush, looking for a hiding place when Bones said, "Look, Josh, we can hide in there..."
And it would seem that Josh said to Bones, "Those are portapotty's, they're really dark inside. But they're a great place to hide!"
And then it would seem, that both boys chose side by side portapotty's, hiding until the bigger boys yelled the game was over... at which point they simultaneously burst out of their 'great' hiding places.
And it would seem that they deemed their hiding place as very smelly...
And it would seem that Josh's Dad is one of the Dad's I was talking to when we found out about Bones' hiding place.
And it would seem that on Wednesday night at our Pack meeting, that I will derive great pleasure in letting said Dad know that my son is not the only one who hides in portapotty's.
I'm thinking I might enjoy this conversation.
I'm not trying to be rude... or disrespectful to the dead... or any of that... but...
I thought Richard Pryor was already dead. Really.
Today while in Publix, I found that Matchbox makes Coal Cars. Diecast cars in a plastic container shaped as a big lump of coal.
I bought one for each boy. I hope they think its the real thing...
Sarah has been blogging the plans over the last few months. And for those who are not in the know, they met through the blogosphere. Frank had a contest on his blog for a T-shirt Babe, a girl to model his T-shirts on his blog. Women from all over sent in pictures of themselves and there was a vote... and SarahK won, becoming his T-shirt babe... never having met him in person. And over the past year and some months, we have watched as they met for the first time, started to date, and then became engaged.
It has been an absolute blast.
And she has the most beautiful sparkly diamond engagement ring, that I did NOT notice, although the waitstaff did... and everyone else who was blinded by it did. Ack!
Note to self: LOOK at a woman's hand when she's said she's gotten engaged!
Sheesh, you think I'd know that one, having girl parts and all.
But it was a GREAT lunch and Sarah looked wonderful, the blushing bride to be.
May Frank and Sarah love each other each day, more than they did the day before.
Today I took the boys to a Boy Scout Camp. It was supposed to be an overnight camp, but they didn't have nice 'facilities' or running water which nixed it in my book. I told you, I don't have to have electricity, but I need running water. I need to take a shower. I, quite frankly, don't even care if it's cold. I just have to be able to shower.
Anyway, at lunch the boys from our Pack were running around playing hide and seek, which was easy considering all the tents to hide behind and all the bushes and trees. I sat at the picnic tables and talked to a couple of the Dads.
The topic of my not camping with my boys there came up and I told them, 'No facilities, Bou doesn't camp'. They laughed. Then I said something along the lines of "... and those port-o-lets they have around here? No.Way."
And from there a great discussion ensued about nasty port-o-lets and the exact moment we individually had vowed to never use another. (They agreed that port-o-lets were awful.)
I told my story and ended with, "They are just so filthy, I'd rather have my bladder explode and die of a massive bacterial infection than use a Port-o-let."
Now Bones had walked up and sat down mid-way through this conversation. The young boy is taking it all in, and upon hearing my last comment about how I REALLY feel about port-o-lets he said,
"Mom, the regular bathrooms here are worse than Port-o-lets..." (They had a set of indoor bathrooms he had used earlier in the day, dismayed that I wouldn't just let him whip it out so he could pee in a tree.)
Said I, in response, laughing with the Dads, "And how would YOU know?! You have not used a port-o-let in your 6.5 years on this planet."
To which he replied with the open eyed, raised eyebrow expression he gets when he knows he's right and is adament, "Yes I do! I just HID IN ONE during Hide and Seek!"
And with that, I nearly vomited right then and there. The Dads are laughing hysterically, I'm having problems breathing as I'm trying to comprehend the pure filth he hid in...
Ack. Everytime I think of it I want to scream, "NO!!! SAY IT ISN'T SOOO!"
Who in the hell hides in a Port-O-let?!!!
If you watch FOX news, and you watch Hannity and Colmes, then you will eventually see a bit that Hannity has been doing in a little city near where I live called, "Riviera Beach".
It is potentially the largest case of eminent domain in the nation. Potential only in the fact that is is not yet successful. Large in the fact that they are displacing over 6000 people.
Make sure you saw all the zeros there folks. SIX THOOOOUUUUSAND people.
To build... a Yacht Club, high rise condos, and... an aquarium. Rejuvenate the area they say, it is a 'blighted' area they claim... and so they will take the land and 'make it better'. For someone. Like the Mayor and City Commissioners.
But first, for a blow by blow on what happened on Hannity and Colmes, and for more facts, go HERE to Ogre's as he blogged on it EXTENSIVELY. It's a great post.
Now, as a person who lives 15 minutes from Riviera Beach... let me give you my 2 cents.
It is not a blighted community. There are parts that are. It is where our ghetto is located. Our crack houses and whores, drug dealers and general all around low life DO live in Riviera Beach. Parts of it.
BUT, there is much about Riviera Beach that is NOT all that. There are those old fashioned Florida concrete block homes, nestled close to the intercoastal. Nothing big and gaudy. Homes that are kept pristine with grown in landscaping.
And those homes... those homes my friends... are the ones the government in Riveira Beach REALLY wants. Forget the subsidized housing, the run down vacant rat shacks that harbor folks that are so strung out their worst fear is the DTs, not the rodents. Forget that.
Those are the EXCUSE. Those are the EXCUSE the government needs to get their hands on the Golden Chalice. Coastal Land that they can build upon... Claim other people's land as their own, shuffle them off somewhere with a pat on the head saying, 'See, we'll look out for you', moving them into some inner city apartment that has no family memories, no past Christmas dinners or children's growth measurements on a door frame.
They use the ghetto as the excuse to develop land they have no right to develop.
Development rules in South Florida. Development is King. Make a quick buck, land is getting expensive, but everybody wants it. But make a BIG BUCK if you can get your hands on some Coastal property and develop it... its even better when the government is on your side and TAKES the property for you.
The plight of the people of Riviera Beach... watch this one on the news folks. It ain't pretty. And it's in my backyard.
I have to tell you, my Man is a good guy. He’s a good father, a good husband, he’s handy, he’s just a good guy. And he can be goofy as all get out, something most don’t see, just those close, and it cracks me up. (Oh and he's very handsome.) But the poor man… he suffers from an affliction. My Man suffers from ‘decision paralysis’. He cannot make a decision. He can make himself sick over minutia. His entire family suffers from this. I’m the one that brought it to their attention.
I was speaking to one of his elder sisters, venting I should add, and I said something along the lines of, “I love your brother to pieces, I do, I do, I do, but he makes me NUTS with his vast inability to make a decision. He frets over the smallest thing… as if he might make the WRONG decision and the world will come crashing down.”
Her response was of shock and then, “He’s like this too?! It’s NOT just me?!” The entire family. Sad, truly it is.
And if I could help him with anything that would come his way, eliminating this curse for him would be my gift to him. It pains me to see him suffer so. I joke not.
(And before anyone thinks I am claiming to be perfect, trust me, I am a hugely flawed person. HUGE. BIG. Gigantically flawed. This is just a little idiosyncrasy with him as far as I see… one that is as endearing as it is sometimes frustrating.)
For instance, he starts thinking about what car he wants after the one he is driving starts to have issues… about 2 years out. We have to get a new truck in April and he’s been thinking about it for 18 months. Research and more research, and MORE research is made. He speaks to people about the cars they own, he talks to mechanics, he reads every single car magazine, which is actually not a stretch as he’s a motor head, but we’re talking some serious RESEARCH.
This is how I pick a car: gas mileage, reliability, and fits everyone. I don’t give a crap what color or what it looks like. I… just… don’t.
But the worst case of his indecisiveness was made clear recently. My Man was out of deodorant and as I was running to the grocery store he asked that I add it to the list and the following conversation ensued, to the best of my recollection:
My Man: Do you know what kind to get?
Me: Yeah. We’ve been married for 14 years. Speed Stick.
My Man: Yeah, but do you KNOW what KIND?
Me: Yeah. I’ve seen it. Quit worrying.
And I walked out the door, returning an hour later, Speed Stick in hand.
A day later…
My Man: You know that deodorant you bought me? How did you choose?
Me: Well, you had blue or green, so I went to the Speed Stick section and found they had lots of different scented blues or greens, but I figured it was no biggy, so I just picked one and threw it in my cart. Why? Does it smell bad?
My Man (stunned and somewhat quiet at first): Really? That’s all you did? I’m going to have you start buying it. It’s got a good scent. When I go, I sit in front of all the deodorants and smell them all and then spend 10 minutes trying to figure out which one smells best…
Holy crap. I felt so bad for him. Really. Over deodorant? If I had known this, I would have started buying it 14 years ago!
So for Christmas, he asked for a new electric razor. We’re doing the practical Christmas this year as we’ve just had a lot going on. (I tried to forgo gift giving between the two of us altogether, but he would not hear of it. I asked for a book light.) He’s used the same Norelco for the last 20 years. And let me tell you, he has USED it. I’m married to an Italian. We don’t do 5 O’clock ‘shadow’ here. We do 5 O’clock ‘beard’. When we have a function at night, he has to shave before we go… twice in one day is not uncommon.
I’m basically married to a frickin’ Chia pet. One minute he is clean shaven and the next minute “POOF!” he’s fully sprouted. But I like it. He is very hairy and I like it… very much.
Off to Target I went. Walking down the aisle I found Braun and thought, “Crap. I hope they even carry Norelco…”, but then… I found… Norelco.
At first it seemed easy. At eye level there was one for 20 bucks, plug in, didn’t recharge, I don’t think. Then for 40, it recharged. And then for a few more bucks… you could rinse it under water to clean it. (Big bonus as he still has to shake his current one to clean it.) And there are some you can shave with… IN THE SHOWER! And then there are some you add some gel to… shaving gel. And then I had to think, ‘Does he use shaving gel?’
Hey, it could happen that I would not notice. I don’t always pick up on everything…
Then you had one that had the shaving gel packs INSIDE the razor and some of them came with EXTRA gel packs.
And on and on it went with every possible combination and permutation of men’s electric razors you could think of… going all the way up to the Big Daddy of them all… with its own case and hair trimmer in the back… and on and on and on.
So… I picked one. I looked at all the features, trying to think back to the features his has, and I picked the one the most similar. It took me… about 2 minutes after I got over the shock of the electric razor market and how frickin’ HUGE it really is. I mean, according to this one aisle, I have to ask, does any man out there use an old fashioned razor? The kind where you buy shaving cream, lather up and cut all the whiskers off, rinsing the razor in a sink full of water? Like in the commercials? If so, you couldn’t tell it by the men’s electric shaver aisle. Holy smokes!
Anyway, but then I thought, “Good God. I am so glad I’m buying this for him for Christmas! If My Man had to come pick out his own electric razor… it would have taken MONTHS.” He would have made himself sick over it… really.
I'm thinking that maybe this whole decision making skill thing I have makes me pretty valuable in this relationship...
I got tagged by my BlogSon Contagion, bad Boy that he is, with a Meme! And a funky one at that.
Great. It's about weird habits. I'm supposed to name 5. Honestly, I think most of my habits are normal. But I'll try...
1) I chew the inside of my mouth when I'm really concentrating or bored.
2) I wash my bananas with soap and water before I put them in the basket. I don't know what pesticides other country's use and if they come over by boat, I figure rats have been nesting in them. I wash my canteloupes, watermelons and honey dews the same way. (I was going to say I Wash My Melons, but was afraid that certain people really wouldn't know what I was REALLY talking about. *ahem*)
3) I wear all my jewelry to sleep, except my watch. All rings, my necklace and my earrings.
4) I never change my earrings. I wear plain gold posts and I never take them out unless I'm going somewhere dressy. I'm a Mom. That doesn't happen often.
5) I hate wearing my hair down. I keep it shoulder length for my husband, but I RARELY wear it down. I don't like my hair and I think it always looks messy.
I'm feeling like spreading the love today so I'm going to tag some wimmin folk I think probably have some funny habits too (but may have already been tagged)... Tammi, Christina (when her life calms down), VW, Sissy, and Army Wife Toddler Mom. Heh.
It’s all about size, folks. It is. That issue with Bones thinking he looked like Sam the Owl when he was a baby, and his saying it was because they were both small… I had some reaffirmation that my son is a normal human carrying a ‘y’ chromosome and its all about size.
First, a little refresher here. Remember when the boys and I went looking for a new hamster and the pet store had them divided out boys and girls… and I was wondering how you really tell the difference… until I saw that boy hamsters balls are HUMONGOUS? ‘Can’t quit looking train wreck’ big? So big that I commented that if the human male’s balls were proportionate to their body the way a male hamster’s balls compare in size to his, that the human male would have to walk around with a wheel barrow in front of him and men would never take up running?
Yeah, well, they were also so big my boys still talk about it. Frequently. That big.
So the following conversation ensued between Bones and me today, to the best of my recollection.
Bones: Mom, the guinea pig in
Mile Sky High and Nibbles (our hamster) look alike.
Me: They do? What part?
Bones: Their hair…
Bones: Well, except the Guinea Pig’s hair is purple
Bones: There is some black like Nibbles has black.
Me: I see.
Bones: And their feet. They both have SMALL feet. That’s it, really.
Me: They do. So black hair and SMALL feet.
Bones: Mom, do guinea pigs have big balls like hamsters?
I have a feeling if I said no, suddenly the guinea pig would have been NOTHING like the hamster. Just a hunch.
My cell phone is making me nuts as of late. I get to the vicinity of my home and it cuts out intermittently. I hit my driveway, and a conversation sounds like a foreign language as I try to interpret what words are being said based on the first or last syllable of every word.
Sometimes it is just difficult to hear. For instance, today I was talking to Morrigan and we were discussing the Coleman camping stove that I requested for Christmas. She had asked me what my husband and I wanted and I told her the Coleman camping stove to which her reply was, “Really? Your HUSBAND REALLY WANTS a Coleman camping stove?” Heh. I’m all about functionality.
So she calls me and we’re discussing it and she says, “infrafarter” and I say, “infrafarter?” and she says, “Infrastarter… infrastarter… your cell phone… I did not say infrafarter…”
As I approach my house it gets worse. And to the best of my recollection, the following conversation ensued:
Morrigan: I want to get your husband and DVD for Christmas. What would he like?
Me: I don’t’ know. I have to think…
Mo: Hitch is good.
Mo: NO! H-III-TCH!
Me: Oh! Who’s in it?
Mo: Will Smith
Me: Wolf balls?
Mo: Wolf balls?
Me: That’s what you said “Wolfballs”
Mo: I did NOT say ‘wolf balls’. WHY WOULD I SAY Wolf Balls?!
Me: I DON’T KNOW. If that’s not what you said, then WHO IS IT?
Mo: WILL SMITH. We need to hang up now. You’re starting to sound like your boys…
Maybe it’s not my phone. Maybe it is genetic. Some latent gene coming out in me now, that has shown itself in my boys already…
Jim over at Parkway Rest Stop has a pretty funny post on his latest trip to California. It’s the flight he writes about, ending with the ‘mental games’ of keeping sane. I think we all play them, don’t we? Jim’s are pretty funny, if you ask me, things like “How many fruits can he name in German”. Mine? Mine are not so funny. I think mine border on the lines of a mentally ill mathematician. Mine… provide amusement for many women I know that have been forced to attend meetings with me.
I calculate when I’m bored. I hate meetings and when I’m bored I get angry, angry that I’m forced to sit there and I have this overwhelming urge to flee. But sometimes… you just… can’t.
It started when I worked for Company X. I’d sit in these small rooms, listening to the speaker drone on and I looked up and there were ceiling tiles. Standard size, so in my head, I decided their width and length and proceeded to count them, along an invisible X and Y axis and proceeded to calculate the square footage of the room.
Soon that wasn’t enough and as good fortune would have it, I’d have to sometimes attend conferences in Company X’s board room. Good fortune as in… it was a bigger room, tougher to calculate and they had this cool ‘chandelier’ on the top of the ceiling. It was an enormous rectangular light and clear plastic ‘pegs’ hung from it.
So for 20 minutes, I could quietly calculate the square footage of this ENORMOUS conference room and when finished, try to compute how many pegs were hanging from that light. I don’t remember the number, but it was well over 5,000.
Anyway, for the rest of the conference, I’d check my computations over and over, tweaking them to make sure I’d counted the pegs on the X and Y axes correctly.
Then one day, I was at a meeting for a women’s group in which I am very active. We were all crammed into a room and they decided that they were going do demonstrate some new software, except the person who set it up, planned poorly and those of us in the back of the room couldn’t see. And it was boring. H-oooooly crap was it boring. And it pissed me off because this is a volunteer organization, nobody was paying me, I was on MY time, and these folks were boring me to tears. (Sidenote-if you’re going to be boring, at least provide slide handouts so the attendees have something to doodle on. Common courtesy, ya know?)
So I break out a scratch pad of paper and slowly lift my eyes to the ceiling and start to count ceiling tile when my now good friend, who actually didn’t know me at the time (but did know of me, which is always scary to hear), looks over at me and the following conversation ensues, to the best of my recollection.
L (in a gruff whisper): What in the HELL are you doing?
Me (in a disconnected whisper): Calculating the square footage of this room.
Me: Shhh. I’m busy.
L: Why in the HELL are you calculating the footage of this room.
Me: Because I’m bored and angry and if I don’t, I’ll get up and walk out, not looking good upon my chapter who asked me to attend this meeting for them.
I finish my calculations.
L: Well that’s just great, Einstein. What’re you going to do now?
Me: I don’t know. I’m at a loss. These figures seem pretty accurate. (as I look around me, realizing I’ve become quite the expert on the dimensions of ceiling tiles over the past few years.)
L: Calculate the volume.
L: Calculate the volume. Wait. Better yet. Calculate the volume and then how many gallons of lemon jello will fit in this room. (Private joke on the lemon jello.)
And so I did. And she thought it was a frickin’ riot and soon word spread amongst the young women of our group and in particular to a member of my very own chapter who was a mutual friend of me and my new found good buddy, that when I am bored, you can catch me looking at the ceiling, calculating.
And it was fine. Really… until…
It was the same long conference and now we were in the main hall, in a big ass hotel, squeezed in with 500 other women. I was sitting in the middle, my new buddy and my chapter mate in the back. I loved this big room because it had partition dividers that ran along the ceiling so I could calculate the volume of the room, then break it down by divided area, ANNNNDDD!, they had these chandelier things like they had at Company X! 10 of them in a room, rectangle, circle, square… holy crap, I used all my elementary school formulas. It was great.
But after day 2, I was done. I’d calculated everything off the ceiling… when suddenly, a very young woman dressed in white, what we call a ‘page’ hands me a note. Now, in our group, only the truly important receive notes. Our pages pass things to dignitaries, officers, and chairmen. It is very formal with these girls wearing all white and gloves, walking quietly in the shadows running things behind the scenes.
Yes, I have paged. Yes, I was good. I’m very efficient.
So here I am, getting a note from a page thinking, “Good Lord. Why am *I* getting a note from a page…?” and I open it and it is from my two new good friends in the back of the room and the note says, “How many gallons of lemon jello will fit in this room?” and so slowly I raised my eyes to the ceiling to do a quick mental computation again of the square footage…
… and from the back of the room, they busted out laughing... and I could hear them. I think they nearly disturbed the meeting.
And now it is a big joke with all of us. And now I am very careful that if a friend of mine is running a meeting, I NEVER look to the ceiling. I don’t want them to think they are boring me… even if they are.
First, I want to thank everyone who answered my call for an opinion on the Torture issue. Everyone was civil, not like they had a choice, and they gave me some things to seriously think about.
And for the record, those are the groundrules for politics on my blog. You can read others comments, but nobody can be rude to anyone else, or act like someone is stupid. I hate that when I see that in blogs and it won't be tolerated here. Not in my home.
Anyway, back to things for me to seriously think about. For instance, what is the definition the media uses for Torture? When I think of torture, I think brutality. That is what I know. But theirs seems to be much more broad based.
There was just a lot of food for thought there and I thank my readers.
I think what has offended me as of late is some random people I have read that TRASH John McCain over his view. I have no issues with disagreeing with him. I don't agree with most our politicians spout off. But trashing him over this?
In my head... this topic is different as Mr. McCain has a unique perspective. He lived a hell that you and I cannot comprehend. Not in my wildest most awful nightmares. And I think that gives him a perspective that should be respected. It can be disagreed with, but it should be respected.
So when I read people saying nasty things when John McCain voices his opinion on Torture, my eyes glaze over and I move on and I think, "These people can not be open minded enough to see that there is another side... a valid side." I cannot read people like that. I can't.
As your children get older, the funny things that occur, it is not always a 'Did he REALLY just do that?', but also a 'Did he REALLY just say that?" You start getting a glimpse of how their brain thinks and sometimes it just does not make sense to the Adult Mind.
This morning Bones was reading to me in the car on the way to school. He reads to me twice a day, plus I've hired a reading specialist on the side. His reading is improving tremendously.
So he's reading his story and he says to me, 'Mom, when I was a baby, did I look like Sam in my story?"
Now Sam is a cartoon in the illustrations and Sam also happens to be... an owl. And then, to the best of my recollection, the following conversation ensued:
Me: Well, Son, you don't have feathers *pause* or wings.
Bones: I know...
Son#2 (jumping in and saying excitedly): ...And you don't have big eyes and a round body, a beak, or those short stubby legs...
Me: Little Buddy tell me exactly, how do you think you and Sam were similar?
Bones: Well, we were both small and... we have the same eyes...
Son#2: Eyes??!!! YOU DON'T HAVE YELLOW EYES!!!
Bones: His EYES are Yellow only in the book!
And that is where I get totally lost. 'Only in the book'. So Sam the illustration exists OUTSIDE the book? And Bones has seen him? He is implying that Sam has BLUE eyes for real... crystal blue eyes like pools of water. Instead of yellow.
I still don't get it. I hope to sit him in my lap tomorrow afternoon and have him read to me, and while we look at the picture of Sam the baby owl, perhaps I can figure out what drum my kid is marching to... because I'm not hearing it.
In our breakroom, where I go to heat my lunch at work, there is a poster on the employee bulletin board that warns of the evils of spying... as in...espionage. On the poster are pictures of various American spies who have evidently been caught and prosecuted.
Some of them I recognize,their faces having been plastered across our newspapers during the investigations and/or trials.
Some of them I do not recognize. Was it a busy news week and they fell to the bottom, not interesting enough? Or did it occur during some time of my life when I wasn't paying attention to National events such as Finals or Mid-terms in college or when I was a completely sleep deprived mother of toddlers.
I don't know.
But as I looked over these pictures, which also provided the department in the government for which they worked when caught, I looked for a common denominator. I noticed there was none.
Navy, Army, DOD, CIA, it was dispersed throughout. Fat, thin, white, black, ugly, attractive, geeky, normal, there were no distinguishing features.
I tell my boys all the time that they have to be aware of the bad people; the bad people are out there and you can't tell who they are. Don't talk to strangers. Don't take a ride from strangers. I drill this stuff into their heads... bad people look like good people.
And my little exercise of looking at the poster in the breakroom confirmed... that even in adulthood, Evil comes in many forms. It is not readily apparent.
There are some Web Blog awards going on right now. Go HERE to see the listings. You can vote once a day and voting runs through 15 December. Look through all of them... you'll find people on my blogroll in nearly every category!
Now... I am so psyched... as MY BLOGDAUGHTER was both NOMINATED and MADE THE CUT for Best Parenting blog. Whoo hoo!
So go vote for VW at One Happy Dog Speaks HERE. And if that's not enough, my telling you to... just so you know I really do know her kids and they are even cuter than you will see on her blog, and they're pretty damn cute on her blog. She has very smoochy boys.
Katrina's Kidz has been alive and well. Today I went out to the warehouse to help Julia box up a large quantity of supplies for Mississippi. Yes, some of those schools are just now starting to open. (Many supplies are also being given to the children of Belle Glade as Wilma ravaged our poorer migrant western communities as well. Katrina's Kidz has been assisting with school supply relief for all hurricanes, not just Katrina.)
Everyone kind of sort of forgot about those folks in Mississippi, didn't they? They're a strong group of people, not to be kept down, and they're just plugging away trying to get their completely destroyed lives back in order... not placing blame... just doing. A real pleasure to help, they are.
So the Knights of Columbus had an 18 wheeler donated for Katrina's Kidz use and the trucker showed up this morning and we filled the truck with supplies... and then he made his next stop to get furniture for a school in Mississippi, a special request. This is what Julia sent out earlier this week...
Have you ever had something happen to you that you thought... "this was meant to be" ???? Let me tell you a short story. Two weeks ago, I received a letter from a school in Mississippi that didn't need 'school supplies' for students. They needed SCHOOL supplies like desks, chairs, AV carts and TV's/VCRs, blackboards, etc. Katrinas Kidz simply cannot provide this type of product. This played heavily on my mind throughout the Thanksgiving break ... how do I get these items or do I simply tell the school... "sorry, we don't provide this."
The following week, I drove my son to school, and parked in a part of the school I rarely go to. In the parking lot was the Director of Campus maintenance, Jeff. He approached me and asked if I still do that 'Katinas Kidz thing.' I said I did. He proceeded to tell me he wanted to clear out the warehouse of some desks, chairs, AV carts, old TV's and VCR's the school no longer uses. All of it in good working condition! I was speechless. Truthfully, all I wanted to do was cry... I had no words for him. He took me on a tour of the maintenance building and showed me all he could donate, and where we could pull up the 18 wheeler to load. I can only believe there are amazing forces at work here. This was more than chance or circumstance.
And so tonight, there is an 18 wheeler that was donated, driven by a man who has donated his time and truck, filled with school supplies that were donated, and packed with school furniture that was donated... on its way to Mississippi.
And it warmed my heart.
'Tis the Season, my friends. 'Tis the Season.
Son#2 asked me tonight, "Mom, those people who ride camels. Do they ride camels because then they never have to stop for water?"
Assuming that were true...
If they invent a kid that never yells "Mom! I have to pee!" in the middle of a car trip... the current kids as we know it could be in danger of extinction.
Tonight is the 40th anniversary of... Charlie Brown's Christmas! Whoo hoo! I'm not the only thing that turned 40 this year.
I love that cartoon. I used to watch it every Christmas as a child. And I loved Linus. He was hope. He was my favorite character.
And that tree? I know everyone has used that expression. Everyone has gone to pick out a tree at some point and seen some saggy forlorn tree in a corner and said, "Oh look! It's Charlie Brown's Christmas Tree!"
Then I look at my tree, still not decorated as we haven't had the time. My kids are tired of waiting for Dad to string the lights and for us all to sit down as a family and decorate.
So... they have taken to drawing little pictures on notebook paper, coloring them in, cutting them out, and then hanging them on the tree with a piece of yarn.
Our tree? Our tree looks like Pig Pen's Christmas tree.
I am going to step out of my box here, this blog being my ‘happy place’, place to vent and reflect, a catch all to what goes on inside of this head, and do something different.
I want some opinions. And these opinions, this is touchy topic. And if there are no comments, this is not something I will be hurt by or take personally. It’s a pretty hot button for some… as it can be for me.
So here are some ground rules for the comments, before I step out and talk about the topic at hand and explain from where I come.
I want an opinion only. You can be as passionate in your opinion as you want. Or you can unemotionally state the facts as you see it. I dont care. What I don’t want is for anyone to respond to someone else’s. It is their opinion, you are entitled to yours. In my world, all my readers are well read and informed. There are no stupid people who read my blog and nobody will be treated as such.
I don’t want a debate. I want no nastiness. Boorish behavior will NOT be tolerated and I don’t give a crap who you are. You can be a dear friend that I e-mail every day or I can be the Godmother to your first born and if you have chosen to be nasty, condescending or confrontational to another of my commenters I will delete your comment. Period.
I’m dead on serious about that. I DO NOT CARE WHO YOU ARE. If *I* deem what you have written to be ugly or attacking to me or another, your comment is history. Understood? Good.
I’m looking for other points of view. That is all.
With that… I read somewhere that something like 60% of all Americans think that some form of torture is OK. I’m having a tough time wrapping my mind around this. Perhaps I am too close to the situation.
Those who do not know me, may wonder how that can be, me this Mom with a blog in West Palm Beach, Florida. See… I know POWs from two wars. I can pick up the phone and call a POW from Vietnam and say, “Hey, this is Bou, I have a question for you…”
Or, I can pick up the phone RIGHT NOW and call a POW from GW1 and say, ‘Hey. It’s me. I’m in trouble and I need A, B, and C’ and I guaran-damn-tee you, he’d be on a plane to my home and give me A, B, and C… on a platter, engraved in gold… if it was that important.
I’m not being flippant. This man has been very dear to me. And I know him well and I know what he went through. I KNOW WHAT HE WENT THROUGH. ALL OF IT. I sat by his wife as she waited for him, not knowing his status. His wife is one of my best friends. And I sat there in horror as I watched CNN and realized the enemy was torturing our men…
So I wonder what the distinguishing difference is that it is a horror that they do it to our servicemen, yet it is OK for us to do it to them. I thought perhaps the distinction is that ours were soldiers where theirs are ‘not’, so then suddenly ‘it’s OK’. But then I thought, to the Iraqis, fighting on the other side, they are all soldiers… soldiers of Allah. But then I thought… Hmm. We don’t recognize THEM as soldiers. Our government doesn’t.
And it gets all messed up in my head. Really. It kind of seems like what Jack would call ‘Calvinball’. We can make the rules and change them. “You’re a uniformed soldier, in an Army we recognize so you CAN’T be tortured. But YOU’RE a terrorist, who thinks you are a soldier for YOUR country, doing what YOU think God wants, but we don’t recognize you as you aren’t a uniformed soldier of the current country, of which I doubt there were really any, but since you are a threat to us, torture is OK.”
Maybe I'm just so horrified by what I know... what I have seen of the aftermath, the anguish that is long term... maybe because I still live it sometimes, maybe I am too close to see why it's OK.
As I said, I'm having a tough time wrapping my mind around it. And I'm having a hard time figuring out what type of person does that for a living. An American who knows that he tortures for a living. How did he reconcile that in his head? Does he sleep at night? Is he equally damaged doing what his country has asked of him? Or is he a sicko that it does not bother at all. Is it all just for the good of God, Home, and Country... red, white, and blue and apple pie. All this runs through my head.
So feel free to express your opinion in my comments. No name calling or ugliness. No, “Bou, You ignorant Slut”. I want to hear if you have an opinion, if you’re comfortable expressing it. And if it gets nasty... and out of control, I’ll turn off comments and forget the whole damn thing, realizing, it was a big big mistake on my part.
Remember my post on what I'd really like to say on a Performance Appraisal, HERE? Well... this is part two, because on Friday... I had my Performance Review.
My Boss, who I will now call Bossman, came over and said our big Boss, who I will now call Big Guy, wanted to have my Review with me and the conversation went something like this:
Bossman: Are you available today? We want to have a Performance Review with you today in between Big Guy's meetings.
Me: You're kidding right? We have to sit down like we did at Company X? We have to do a Performance Review? Look. I'm happy, you're happy, we're all happy. Let's just don't... and say we did.
Bossman (who by the way is a real peach): Nope. Today.
Me: Fine. Can't we do this next week?
Bossman: No. Big Guy is out of town next week and HE wants to do this today. Quit resisting. You'll be happy.
With that, he winked and walked away.
Now then, I am very appreciative of kind words. I am. But really, I do not need to do this whole Performance Appraisal thing. I don't need to get all touchy feely and talk about what I've done. For the record, I've NEVER gotten a bad review. I just find the whole thing so damn awkward. I think it should go like this:
Bossman: I'm happy. Here are my goals for you.
Employee: I'm happy too.
Bossman: Good. Your raise is in your next paycheck.
Except in the case of my company, which does not give raises. I work for a small company, very small, and we do outsourcing for major government contractors. We can do it cheaper than the big guys for myriad reasons like... most of us are part time and don't have benefits. But we have to keep costs down, so we also tend to earn less than at the big companies. And we don't get raises.
So the time came and Bossman and Big Guy hauled me into a conference room. I felt this urge to flee. Fight or flight I suppose, and I'd already tried fighting it.
And so we sat and they gave me my review, scaled from a range from 1-5, 1 being GREAT and 5 being, "You suck wet socks". I expected all 3s. Average. I've been there a year and am just now getting a handle on some of the systems. (10 -15 hours a week can make the learning curve take longer than I like...)
I got all 1's and 2's. I read and reread and then really didn't know what to say... as it rated me as a valued employee and it appeared they expected me to be at the top next year for what I do.
And then... they... gave... me... a... raise. I nearly fell out of my chair. It wasn't big, it was pretty much a cost of living plus a little, but still. I couldn't thank them enough.
And then... they... gave... me... a... lump sum bonus of an OBSCENE amount of money for what I do. I mean... it paid for my Christmas.
I was stunned and speechless. Finally I said, "Wait. Let me get this right. I can work 10-15 hours a week, come and go as I please, tell you I'm going to work on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, but call you when a kid is sick and not come in and work on a Friday instead. I leave early one day because my house is infested with fire ants or my air conditioner broke, and work a different day then the day we had planned... and you give me a raise? AND a LUMP SUM BONUS?!!"
Bossman said, "Bou, these are the terms we hired you under. Your family comes first. You run a household. You said 10-15, which is what you consistently put in. These were YOUR terms."
And I replied, "Yes. But you DIDN'T change the rules! Everyone changes the rules. And you didn't..."
And I think that is what has surprised me the most, the part that makes me pinch myself... the fact they never changed the rules.
Then they gave me a raise.
And Christmas money.
And although there are days my job is mundane and I think I might surely die of boredom for engineering can be sheer monotony punctuated by spurts of intellectual challenge, and although there are times I get aggravated with my customer, the men I work for, my Tech Lead, Bossman, and Big Guy, are the best. I have truly been blessed by falling into their path.
The people make the job. For sure.
I've seen this in a few places now.
First, VW probably doesn't even need to bother to take it as she'll score what I score.
Second, when taking the test NONE of my Christmas wishes were on their choices. How lame-O.
Third, I don't own a reindeer nose, but I have the felt antlers!
|You Are "Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer"|
For you, Christmas is a mix of tradition and fun.
I thought I’d put together my wish list, having gone through Toys R Us with my boys a few weeks ago and listening to theirs. Of course I have the wish for general health and well being of my boys and family, this is going to be more of a selfish list. One for me.
1.) I’d like chocolate to be calorie free. I need to be able to sit down and eat an entire pound of it and not gain any weight. Chocolate is pretty much what sees me through the bad times. I can only run so much, but I can eat chocolate nearly 24/7.
2.) 8 hours of continuous sleep. 10 is best, but I’ll settle for 8. I want to wake up in the same position I fell asleep in. And if you could do that for 3 nights straight, man oh man, I’d be forever grateful. Oh… and I don’t want to dream. I’m talking ‘dead to the world’ asleep. I’m tired of living another life at night in my dreams when I do sleep. Dreaming is highly overrated. Trust me. Especially when you die in them. Those suck.
3.) No more projects from school that require parental help or participation. I’m done with 5th, 3rd, and 1st grades. I don’t mind helping with homework, but these projects that require my assistance, no more of those please. I’m through with Johnny Appleseed, Indians, and experiments that require growing flowers with different plants listening to 4 different types of music to see which grows best.
4.) If my kids are going to whine, can you have them at least present me with cheese before they start? I prefer Brie. Warmed in crescent roll dough is awesome.
5.) No more clogged toilets. I’m really afraid that eventually Bones is going to win out on this need to ‘plunge the commode himself’ dealy, and I’m not ready for the aftermath. I’m fully expecting fecal particles flung upon my walls. As it is, his running through the house swinging the plunger, begging to help… it makes my skin crawl.
6.) No dead pets this year. $38 to euthanize a hamster, followed by a viewing, and full blown funeral has me pegged out on the dead pet meter. Although our Pet Cemetery is officially open, I see no need to use it this year. And if we do, do me a favor and make sure our new hamster just flat out doesn’t wake up. Let me save the cash, although next go round there will not be the embarrassment of randomly calling vets saying, “do you see hamsters???”
7) 10 – 15 lbs. Vanity weight I know. But effortlessly removed, as in, “I just wake up and it’s gone” would be a big damn bonus. Really big. Should I awaken with a flat tummy? Name your price and its yours. Really.
8) No hurricanes this next year. Surely you can do something about that. I’ve told my husband that in honor of the last two hurricane seasons, we should just find a random roofer every year for the rest of our lives and mail them a check for $3000 in a card that says, “Merry Christmas!” No more ‘canes. M’kay?
9) I would like the ability to be able to identify which child is standing at my bedside at 2AM. I am starting to feel like a really crappy Mom by awakening, eyes half shut and saying, “Wait. Before you start. Who are you?” Oh and I don’t want to wake up anymore, in a start, and look at my better half of 14 years and think, “Who is this man and why is he in my bed?” It creeps him out. And while I’m at it… this year… I don’t want to wake up, take a shower, get dressed and look at the clock realizing its only 1:30. AM. It happened too many times this year. No more for next year, if you can swing it.
10) And for this upcoming year, I would be ever so appreciative if my homestead could be skipped on the whole ‘stomach virus’ routine. After 10 years of it, I’m pretty much worn out. I think skipping The House of Bou JUST ONE YEAR, is OK in the play book. Take a look. I’m sure it’s in the fine print there somewhere. The pizza stain from this year’s episode was never fully removed from the white carpet in my bedroom. There is still a shadow on the same carpet from a virus that commenced after a chocolate cake birthday party… Chocolate cake puke doesn’t come out any easier than pizza puke. Now, don’t get me wrong, I FULLY APPRECIATE that *I* haven’t caught any of these viruses in 3 years… but skipping all the boys, phew, I don’t know what to say. It would be beyond gratitude.
Thank you for looking at my list. I know, you probably can’t control any of this, but if you can, I’d be ever so grateful. And I think you’ll see overall, I’ve been pretty good. I haven’t strangled my customer at work or even said anything that would reflect poorly upon my company. The impure thoughts I’ve had…OK. Well assuming you read minds, you know it could have been worse. Really. AND!!! I attended all those parties with my husband this year and smiled! I didn’t even fight him on it this year… well not too much.
So take a look Santa. And Merry Christmas. And… talk to Mrs. Santa. You may find she thinks we Moms should get a break every now and then.
I want this game to be close... but Navy to take it. Yahooo!
Update 1): Damn. Army looks good this year. Really.
2) Uh oh. Touchdown Army. (small print) Shhhh.... maybe it'll be the last...
3) Touchdown Navy!!!
Owens is HOT
today! A tit for tat game, this is awesome!
4) Holy Crap!
5) Halftime. Navy 21 Army 10. Owens is ON. Army has looked strong. I hope they keep it together in the 2nd half. I don't want this to be a blow out. A one touchdown win is sufficient... I might have a frickin' heart attack if its only a frickin' field goal...
6) Touchdown Navy... (small print) I really didn't want a runaway game. And everyone frickin' came home so I didn't even get to see it and do the kinda sorta happy dance. Bah!
7) Touchdown Navy... Good Lord. It's going to be a blow out.
Half the fun of this game really is the commercials!
I can't believe how young these men are. How humbling. I'm old enough to be their Mom... Bah!
8) Touchdown Army!!!
I really don't want a blow out...
9) Holy Crap!
67 yard run on a kick off. Good Grief!
10) Touchdown Army!!!
Navy Wins!!! 42-23...
and they take the lead in the Series... A First!!!
Saturday, December 3rd, CBS... 2:30 EST kick off. Game Day Central.
Navy, last year's winner of THE GAME, and currently running 6-4, is taking on...
Army, last year's LOOOOSER of THE GAME, and currently running 4-6.
I'm skipping the Annual School Picnic to watch the game. I was at a board meeting for the school when it was announced that the picnic was rescheduled for Dec 3. (It was canceled due to Hurricane Wilma.) I said quite loudly, "December 3rd?! What were they thinking?! That is the Army Navy game!"
To which they all stared back at me quietly and finally, the principal said, "Yeah, I wonder what they were thinking..." and he rolled his eyes.
Heh. So my husband is taking the boys to the picnic and I'm not going.
And in case anyone missed The Great Omnipotent One's comment in my last post, I am posting it here... this gives you more of a flavor about the brotherhood of our service academy grads. You don't hear things like this between FSU and UF grads. Or Alabama and Auburn grads. This sums it up:
"Ah, the Navy-Army game. How sweet it is! I still remember my first one in December, 1958. Navy lost, which made our plebe year even worse than it already was. After the game, when Navy had sung “Navy Blue and Gold”, and Army had sung that weird tune they call their alma mater, all the plebes met in the center of the field. There was no animosity, no trash talk, no fights. We shook hands and swapped cuff links. For the remainder of my career I wore an army and a navy cuff link with my full dress uniform. On the rare occasions now when I wear a tux, I wear those same cuff links. We plebes were joined at the hip like brothers. Those were the days before physical hazing was forbidden, and both institutions applied unimaginable physical and mental stress to rid the classes of those who lacked the toughness and tenacity to survive. We each respected the other, and throughout my navy career, when I’d run into a West Point grad at a staff meeting, I always felt like I was meeting an unknown classmate. But still, it’ll be such a pleasure to watch the Navy team kick Army’s ass on Saturday."
And so... GO NAVY!!!! BEAT ARMY!!!!
I hit 50,000 today at 3:40 EST, from a hit given to me by a Cripplanche! Thank you, Denny!
I just knew it was going to be for some funky search. Instead, it went to one of Denny's readers who lives in the Bronx and uses Verizon. So... if you're still reading and you recognize it as you, Congratulations!
And Ellison of Blog d'Elisson... he was 50,001 and he provided me with a screen shot too... which I'm keeping.
So, thank you to all my readers who have been coming by over the last 18 months. 50,000 hits. Who woulda thunk it?
VW had a porch pass last night, so we went to Victoria’s Secret. I know, I know, I have many a woman reader yelling at their screen, “NO! Not the pink hell hole of the universe!” Heh. I don’t think that came out right, but hey, it has a nice ring to it…
But we did. I figured it was going to be my experiment for the sake of womanly science, trying on various size bras starting with 36AA and 32D and for her, a spectator sport. Or an enormous entertainment factor. I think she was banking on the entertainment factor…
So walk down the mall we did, and boy, I think I remembered why I don’t do the mall thing much. VW and I were chit chatting and I glanced to the left, where some teenager reached over his shoulder to scratch his back and in so doing, his shirt tale lifted up, revealing… a big hairy ass. I had to avert my eyes. I was horrified. No kidding, we saw 6 INCHES of his crack. I thought at first it was just me who had witnessed the horror show, but upon passing it, VW mentioned it. Good Grief. Where was that boy’s Mama? His pants were so low, they were nearly cupping his cheeks! Ack! It was gross.
We made our way into VS and upon looking around, we were approached by who I think ended up being the Manager. She asked if she could help us and I told her I was looking for her bras without underwire as I don’t do underwire. She informed me that underwire was uncomfortable for me because… I must be wearing the WRONG bra size! And she offered to measure me to help me find the right size!
Holy crap! I couldn’t believe our good fortune. As we followed the manager into the back of the store, I turned to VW making an exaggerated face and mouthed, “Bloooog Fooooodder!” It just appears folks. I walk places and blog fodder throws itself at my feet!
Into the back of the store we walked where the woman in black starts to measure me. The measurements she was getting for me were distinctly different than the ones I had, as she was measuring over my clothes. I told her this. And this is where the education comes in for some of the women folk.
She said I needed a bra on so she could get the idea of my full shape, that breast tissue does one of two things, it sags or spreads. She needed it doing neither of those. It made sense, but my ears perked at the ‘spread’ idea because I still pass the ‘pencil test’, there is no saggage… but spreadage? Hunh. I had not heard that before.
Upon her assessment she said to me, “You are a 34 or a 36C”. I laughed. I surely do not look like a C cup, but she gave me one of each to try, leaving us with a nice young woman who she called their ‘bra expert’. What a title, huh?
I tried on the 34 and it just looked awful. Where some women may get spillage out the front, I had it out the sides. This was an indicator for me that I have ‘spread’ at this my 40th year. They are ‘wider’, if that makes sense. I think my breasts may very well start on the sides of my body.
Heh. That’s a nice visual, I am sure.
The 36C? It fit perfect. I could not believe I was a 36C. I felt so… so… voluptuous! This coming from a woman who is content to have NO breast tissue. Its fat in my eyes, I don’t need it. But sure enough, that’s what I am, a 36 C.
So came the time for me to find one I liked, so they brought me a whole heapin’ lot of 36Cs to see which was preferable. Now, this entire time, I’d try on a bra, peak out the door, and have the ‘bra expert’ come in, in between changes. I’d have flung the door open, truth be told, but I was afraid of scaring men. I have no inclination to do any permanent emotional damage.
And I don’t know what happened, but some mention came in of VW coming into the room and I said, “I’m not modest. It doesn’t bother me” and VW said, “Well why have I been staying out here the entire time?” and I replied, “I figured you weren’t allowed in. Maybe they might think we’re lesbians or something” to which the VW laughed really loud and the young ‘bra specialist’ laughed, but had this incredulous look on her face.
So from there I tried on bra after bra as VW and I commented on all of them… the impracticality of some. I feel certain we kept the ‘bra specialist’ entertained. There was this one black funky lace thing that in the center was ‘tied’ together. I tried it on for the hell of it, not fully comprehending why someone would wear something like this. I mean, with my luck, the middle tie would come undone and I’d come apart... at work. And it wasn’t cheap either. I bet it was $40. Surely it couldn’t be for sex. I mean let’s get real. Forty bucks for some guy to spend 5 seconds untying it only for it to end up on the floor for the rest of the night? No thanks. No forty dollar bra of mine is ending up on the floor… it needs its own special drawer for that kind ‘o cash.
I’m all about form fit and function… which is why I bought, ‘The Shock Absorber’. That’s right, my new bra has a name.
I don’t care what they say about underwires, they still suck. And the Shock Absorber, it moved everything where it needed to be, to the point that when I put it on, VW declared, “Hey! With that bra you don’t need padding under your sweater!”
Heh. Of course not. I’m a frickin’ 36C!
Matt of Blackfive started posting on the big event of this weekend HERE... It's the Army/Navy game! Yahoo!!!
(This is a re-run of my initial Army Navy post from last year, with updates. It all needed repeating.)
So to start (make sure you click on the thumbnail to get the 'real' effect!):
Why is this game THE game of the season? Because its one of the last of the old fashioned college football games.. The Army/Navy game is one of the most pure true college football games played. (I'm not ignoring The Air Force Academy, it is just that coming from a Navy family, The Great Omnipotent One graduated from Annapolis, this is THE game of the year.). These men who are playing this game are centered on what is important. Their schools are steeped in tradition... a tradition of these men graduating and then commencing a career that hinges on their selfless serving of our country.
As our 'Big' universities around the nation make the front pages of our papers and sports sections for their athletic prowess, they are also making it on the front pages as members of their teams are convicted of battery, theft, drug abuse, rape... Do not try to convince me you have not seen this because you cannot miss it; it is so prevalent. Unfortunately today, our youth look up towards these athletes as heros and these "heros" are pepetually showing their true selves... people completely unworthy of the adulation of our young. I often wonder how many of these "heros" ever really graduate.
Yet... at the academies, these men ARE going to graduate. These men ARE going to serve our country. And THESE MEN are the men who are the most worthy of being the heros to our young... yet if you were to ask them, they would say different. They will not serve our country for big money. They will not serve our country to make the front page of the paper, for fame and the trappings that go with it. They will serve our country as our forefathers have done, selflessly, and we are indebted to men like these.
And by the way... some of them play a little ball on the side too.
So what you have is college football as it is meant to be played. It is being played by young men who are not being paid nor do they expect to ever be paid for their athletic skills. They were accepted to these schools for their overall well roundedness. They are smart, have exhibited leadership, and are physically fit. The service academy's programs aren't filled with recruiting violations and their players aren't thugs who happen to be able to throw a ball... rather they are honorable, strong, smart men, who have their priorities right... and play a little ball on Saturdays in the Fall.
This is it folks. Nope, this won't be like the SEC championship. Or the ACC. You won't be watching young men who are trying to be first round draft pick to make the big bucks only to drive flashy cars and display boorish behaviour. You'll be watching young men who want to beat their opponent... they want to win... but at the end of the game, they'll shake each others hands because... this is the big one, folks... at the end of the game, THEY ARE ON THE SAME TEAM. You'll be watching young men, some of whom, this time next year will be on the front lines in Iraq or Afghanistan. Some will be in flight training. Some will be going for futher training to operate equipment or lead men. All of these young men will be defending us against our enemies. These are young men who KNOW this is just a game because what REALLY matters is what happens when they graduate. They are grounded and see the big picture.
It is a big rivalry this Army Navy game. But push come to shove, this is what Navy wants the seasons to look like:
Army: 10-1 (one loss to Navy)
And Army wants the season to look like this:
Navy: 10-1 (one loss to Army)
So if you're flipping through the channels on Saturday (kick-off at 2:30), take a look. It's what it's all about. It's the real thing, untarnished and played with heart.
Go Navy!!! Beat Army!!!
And now to end this post... The Navy Fight Song and in the event you want to sing along:
Stand Navy down the field, sails set to the sky.
We'll never change our course, so Army you steer shy-y-y-y.
Roll up the score, Navy, Anchors Aweigh.
Sail Navy down the field and sink the Army, sink the Army Grey.
I had my Bone Density Scan today... AND... I HAVE DENSE BONES!!! Well. Kinda. Sorta.
Basically, all the running, weight lifting, and the three years of Karate increased the bone density in my spine by over 4% and my hip by 3% which now puts me in the normal range. Not the high end... but normal nevertheless.
I was stunned. Really. You can't feel your bones get more dense. I thought for sure it was all for naught and I was going to have my OBGYN calling me tomorrow when he received his results, sternly telling me AGAIN that I need to take my calcium.
Heh. But that ain't happenin' now, because my weight bearing exercise did it! Yahoo!
And just so you know... when I started weight training 3 years ago, I was squatting 50 lbs, leg pressing 120, and curling 5. I'm squatting 100, leg pressing 250 and curling 20. 3 sets each, 15 reps. I have made big improvements in all areas of lifting and I'm very happy.
But I'm happier as it has all made my bones healthier.
I asked my doctor if I could expect to continue to accrue bone mass. We both agreed that it was highly improbable. I had heard studies showed 5% was what you can get with weight bearing exercise. I'm pretty much there, but will keep trying, while adding Calcium fortified OJ to my diet. He said I can't slack off because now I have to maintain it. Maintenance is probably even more important at this point than gaining it was 3 years ago, in my opinion.
So that's the scoop. I'm happy. I will have no problems maintaining as... I'm a very goal oriented and driven person.
And my real lesson to me today was, 5% may sound like a small percentage, but when talking bone density... it is not.
Oh I went shopping at VS today with VW, but you'll have to wait for tomorrow for that story. It's too late to write it out.
Besides... I have my Mammogram story. It's a precursor, a build up to the big story of our shopping expedition for the Perfect Bra for Bou.
I know everyone has seen these great cartoons with womens boobs pushed, pressed, and squished inside a vice for her Mammogram. The key is to actually get one's boob to lie on that surface. There isn't a whole lot for me to work with...
So I said to the tech, "Hunh. This should be interesting. They're not exactly big..." as I'm looking down at the surface and it's showing outlines of various size boobs, like she's supposed to fit MINE into one of the outlines. Let me just say there are many outlines beyond my breast. So many that they look like ripples coming out from it.
The tech looks at me and says slowly, "Ummm... I've worked with smaller..." and she said it as if the last part of that sentence should have been, "... but not often." Lovely.
As she's mashing it into place, I'm thinking, "Hey, she works with these all day. I bet she can tell what size cup I am...". It made perfect sense at the time. So I said to her, "What do you think? Do you think these are Double A's?" to which she replies, "Uhhh. no. They're bigger than that."
I stood there for a minute and said, 'My Mom said she saw on Oprah that 90% of all women are wearing the wrong sized bra, so I'm trying to figure out what size I should wear..." and she replies, "I SAW THAT ON OPRAH! That was a GREAT show!"
So I said, "Yeah, so based on some very unscientific research, there is a possibility that I'm a 36AA, what say you?" and she says, "No. I don't think so..."
I said in turn, "Well, the other possibility is that I could be... oh... a 32D. Do you think these look like Ds?" as I point down at my girls.
She looked kind of taken back and said, "No. They are DEFINITELY NOT D's."
So there you have it. She couldn't tell me what size, but they weren't AAs and they weren't D's.
Now the place I go does not have you leave until the Radiologist has read your Mammogram. You leave KNOWING if there is a problem and if he finds one, they do a ultrasound right then and there too. He thinks women should go home with as much certainty as he can provide. I like that.
He walks in and I must confess, I was really tempted to say, "What size bra do you think I should wear?", but I refrained. Most of my doctors think I'm a lunatic anyway, a rather obstinate lunatic, no need to add a doctor to the list.
He does the exam and he says to me, 'You have very dense breast tissue. You have the option of coming back in, in 6 months, and having an ultrasound. It might pick up other things this mammogram didn't."
Before I continue, I was all over that as my Paternal Grandmother had breast cancer twice, one in each, resulting in 2 radical mastectomies.
Anyway, I just stared at him for a minute and the conversation went something like this:
Me: *I* have dense breast tissue?
Me: Me. I do?
Me: (holding my left breast in my left hand) I am 40 years old and breast fed three babies. These empty sagging pockets of flesh have dense breast tissue?
And! He laughed at me! And then he said: Yes. It is hereditary as is your blue eyes and brown hair.
Heh. So there you have it. Clear Mammogram, Dense Breast Tissue, and I'm not a AA or a D cup. What a GREAT data gathering day!
*Language Alert* The following was written in my head last night during my run. Yeah, I did other things than pray I wouldn’t puke in front of the Young Punk. If the F word dropped liberally offends you OR if suicide hits too close to home for you, I suggest you don’t read the following. Really. And I’m posting it because after sitting on it for 24 hours, I still feel the same way. And this is my Blog, MY Voice, so I can. –Bou.
I don’t care what you do to yourself. I don’t. It’s not my business and I have too many other things in my life in which to be concerned.
I don’t care if you turn your hair pink, although I may take a 2nd look, but that’s what you probably want anyway.
I don’t care if you have tattoos all over or piercings in so many places you have a chain running from under your pants up and hooked to your nose.
I don’t care.
I also don’t care if you kill yourself. Don’t get me wrong. If I care about you, yeah, I’m going to miss you and grieve more than you would think possible and I’m going to feel awful that things were so bad that you could not be helped… but the act itself? It was YOUR decision.
I have not walked in your shoes. I have not felt your anguish. I have not been trapped in your body with your tormented and tortured soul. I am not to judge… for the most part.
Suicide is the ultimate desperate act… as well as the most selfish act. But if someone is in that much pain that this has become their only recourse in their head, I will not judge… for the most part.
However, should you use it as your final desperate act as the ultimate 'fuck you' to your husband, blowing your brains out… with your children in your house knowing your children will find you before he does… as he’s not home…
And should that child that finds you be the tender age of 6, where they’re still nothing but a baby, not corrupted yet by the ways of our society…just babies in bigger bodies…
May you Burn and Rot in Hell for eternity.
Every time someone mutters your name I will not think, “I’m so sorry they felt it could not be fixed.” Instead I will think, “I hope you are burning in fucking hell right now.”
When I see your name in print in the obituary, I will not think, “Mental illness is such a tragedy. I’m sorry your life was so awful to boot.” I will think, “I hope you are rotting in fucking hell.”
And when your name comes up in a whisper and people give that sorrowful look as to how twisted and tortured your soul must have been, I will not agree. I will think to myself, “For eternity. I hope you fucking burn in hell for eternity. And may God Bless your children… because you did not.”
I have great toleration, but there are some things for which I have none. This is one. Don't mess with the Babies.
May she fucking rot.