October 30, 2009

Unfocused Running

I can't stay focused. There is so much to do. I have family coming in town tonight, my bathroom is still under some construction, I'm packing to go to Miami for the 'Race from Hell', and I'm supposed to work today.

Right.

I walk down the hall to put fresh towels in the bathroom and to put clean sheets on the bed when I notice dirt under my living room chairs. I pick up a broom to sweep when I notice stuff on the dining room table. I clean off the table when I glance in the kitchen and remember I need breakfast food for tomorrow's race and I need to start a list. I grab my paper and make a list and realize there are breakfast dishes in the sink. I start the dishes and remember I forgot to call the Church about my son's Confirmation classes that start on Sunday.

And so it goes.

I still need to put sheets on the bed.

On the ride to school this morning, it was 7:12 and I noticed it was 78 degrees. I am 100 miles north of the race. I said to my eldest, "Holy crap. Look at how hot the weather is. Tomorrow at this time... I'm going to be into mile 2 and it's going to be nearly 80. This is going to SUCK."

I continued as I spooled up even more. He was on his cell phone looking at the Miami weather predictions. Finally he put his cell phone down and said, "Face it, Mom. Tomorrow is going to be miserable."

In more ways than one.

I got out of the shower this morning and started cutting back my toenails in an effort to stave off losing anymore. I'm down one and have nine I'd like to keep. (I did lose the 2nd toe's nail in the VA Beach race.) It takes 10 months for a big toenail to grow back which means I have only had the one on my right foot, completely grown in for 4 weeks. I'm not ready to lose it again.

Yet I see it as an inevitability.

I am going with four women. We are splitting hotel rooms, doing dinner, and driving back and forth together. They are fast... I am not. This is going to be my slug race.

It's a Halloween race so my one gf, who was also my coach last year has been asking us if we're going to dress.

Dress?

Is she nuts?

Folks, I am here to tell you, by mile 7, I want to be naked. I want nothing touching my body. I am hot, and sweaty, and icky and my hands and feet are blown up like balloons. If I were going to dress, I'd have to go as the Streaker from the 1970s with my only costume being running shoes. I'd be sans clothes and let me assure you, it would not be pretty. I'm the poster child of what a body looks like after three childbirths... saggy wrinkly skin and all.

God bless Eve for feeding Adam that apple. She knew what she was doing. We women in post child birth bodies have no business wearing fig leaves. She's written in history as sinning.

No.

She just had forethought.

Anyway, I emailed my girlfriend back, .cc'ing everyone, on this thought of 'dressing for Halloween'. I said, "No way. This is going to be my worst race yet. I'm all about blending. I don't want to draw ANY attention to myself. As a matter of face, if I could, I'd dress as pavement to blend. I'd dress in black with a yellow line down the center of my body and run in the middle of the street."

So I'm off in a couple hours to work and then go to Miami where this should be my last race.

I think.

My mind says, "This is it!"

My feet say, "This is it!"

The endorphin addict within me, the damn junky, is saying, "Ohhh... I don't know.... there is always Palm Beach in December." The junky whispers, "It'll be cooooool out... the drive is so very close." And then she adds (my inner junky is a frickin' crack ho in my head), "Don't you want that t-shiiiiirt? Coooool medalllll... Prettyyyy..."

I'm off. Play nice...

Posted by Boudicca at 08:32 AM | Comments (10)

October 28, 2009

My Boy Patches

Report cards came out and Bones did horribly. Very bad. A take your breath away bad.

We knew it was coming. We have put every bit of spare energy into trying to keep him afloat. When we realized there was a problem, it was four weeks into the first quarter and he was literally failing. Nearly every class.

We staved that off and he made B's in the most important subjects. His lowest grade was in religion, a 'D', and my attitude was "Who gives a crap about religion?" as we send our son to Catholic school.

Nice.

But that is where we are, picking and choosing what is the most important and what is the least.

We love his teacher. We do. Very much. Her son has ADHD and she finally said it would probably be worth it to put him on something just to take off the edge.

Seeing his grades, watching us all struggle, pushed us to trying something, anything, to help.

Monday we got a script for 'the patch'. He's to put it on for the day, and within 3 hours of removing it, the drugs are out of his body. Within 30 minutes it's starting to deplete. We want something to keep him who he is, but help him to control himself just a bit more than he is... because as hard as he's trying, it's just not working.

He said to his teacher, "I hate this. I hate having ADHD. This is NOT a gift!"

It's the same thing he said to me. Actually the conversation went like this in the Pediatrician's office:

Him: I hate this.

Me: I know it,

"I don't want ADHD anymore."

"You can't change it. It is what it is... we will be fine."

"No, you don't get it. This isn't a gift. A gift is something you want. I don't want this."

"There are a lot of things we don't want in life, but we learn to cope. Every year will get better and better. Look at Michael Phelps. He has ADHD."

"Mom. Michael Phelps is a swimmer. His energy makes him go fast. I am NOT a swimmer..."

And so it went.

Now he is obsessing. The patch has him absolutely obsessed with where it is, how it feels, what it's doing.

Day 1 was horrible. He called me from school, from the nurse's office. I was in a meeting and called back having missed him. The message said, "Mom, it itches. I hate this. I think I still have a stomach ache. It itches. Can I take it off?"

I had him put it on his hip. And I think that is where the mistake was... TELLING him where to put it. He has no control over this. He knows he has to take it, he doesn't want to take it, he doesn't want ADHD and this entire thing is making him batcrap crazy.

But I assure you, not nearly as batcrap crazy as it is making me. He is driving me absolutely INSANE. How in the hell I ended up with such a high maintenance child is beyond me.

Today, I let him pick where he put the patch. Give him control, maybe he'll go with the flow. He picked his stomach.

Fine.

He's still obsessing. I got a phone call at 11:38 asking if he could take it off. I made him wait until 2:00. We are establishing a time now as to when he can remove it. It gives him some control.

Meanwhile I saw his teacher this afternoon and she was shaking her head laughing telling me that he is absolutely obessessing and she knew it had to be on his stomach as all day she found him with his shirt pulled open at the neck, with his little face peering down inside his shirt.

Tomorrow he has picked the back of his shoulder to place the patch.

It's frickin' ADHD patch hide and seek.

Hey, if it makes this easier, I'm cool. If he'll quit calling me at work, it's even cooler.

Because quite frankly, we are in Qtr 2 and I'm looking to medicate myself at this point. Seriously... I'm pretty fried. He flat wears me out.

I asked my husband last week, "Can you prescribe valium?"

He looked at me and said, "yeah, for who? What for?"

I said, "Me. I think I need valium..." He shook his head and rolled his eyes.

But guess what? I know damn well he's thinking, "Phht. I'll beat you to it first!!!''

Gah!

Posted by Boudicca at 09:09 PM | Comments (16)

October 27, 2009

Blip

If we make it through 5th Grade with Bones, it will be a major victory in our lives.

That is all.

Posted by Boudicca at 08:53 PM | Comments (7)

October 26, 2009

Georgia Rules

I'm back from Atlanta and TN. I got in last night around 12:30AM and by the time I got to bed, I was too exhausted for today. It's been one of those sluggish days.

This is turning into another one of those high stress weeks. Appointments are on top of meetings, on top of work, on top of life... and then my husband's Jersey family is coming in town and staying with us this weekend as his brother's baby is being Christened on Sunday. Did I say our home has been under some construction?

We're down a bathroom and we have guests coming. The house is a mess and I'm beat.

Meanwhile, what appears to be my last race is on Saturday in Miami. I signed up for it after talking to a girlfriend of mine. Why did I sign up for it?

At the time I thought I'd be doing a couple more races to ramp up to do the Disney Half in January. I needed this race to keep me ramped for the Palm Beach to keep me ramped for Disney.

And then there was the business with the medal. I want that frickin' medal.

I have to have it.

Medal_MHHM_ezine.jpg

But this race is going to be my worst race ever and probably my last.

First, I'm tired of running in the heat. I am so sick and frickin' tired of it. It's not fun. It makes me miserable. And I hate it. This race is going to be HOT. (I've been running in hot S. FL weather since May. I'm done. DONE.)

Second, my feet are toast. The blisters have become a real problem and the more I power walk or run on them, the less chances they have of healing and although they look OK now, after 13.1 miles, they are going to be in bad bad shape. I just peeled off the last of the worst blister and with nuskin, hope to have it ready for Saturday's race. (There is a real friction problem with the bottom of my feet and my shoes.)

Third, I'm not good at it. I do it. I finish. But I suck at running. I can power walk and do it well, but I don't need to race to do that. I can do that around the neighborhood. I don't have the time to put into it and I'm not trained for this race like I should be.

I think the number one question asked of me this weekend was, "Are you a masochist?" (Yes, I laughed.) But some of the time it was asked, I think it was with some seriousness to it because... well... you have to see my feet. They look like they hurt.

And the answer is no, I'm not a masochist. I'm very focused and driven. And I'm an endorphin junky. I'm absolutely an endorphin junky and I readily admit it. Not adrenaline... endorphine. I get the rush starting around mile 3 and it will last until I hurt so much I can hardly stand it... which is either when a big huge blister forms on the bottom of my foot and is about to burst or mile 15, whichever comes first.

I don't anticipate a rush this race. I anticipate enduring and pain and that's it. This is not going to be pleasurable, but something to just finish. Yes, I am dreading it.

And Georgia summed it up best this weekend. Denny was sitting on the couch and Georgia was sitting on the couch arm, leaning over the back of the couch, slightly over Denny's shoulder. He had his legs propped up on the ottoman. I had asked to take his sock off and I was rubbbing his one foot. It is cool to the touch always and he told me it's because when you have a spinal injury, the circulation is poor from the injury down.

Georgia said to me something to the effect, "I don't know why you keep running. Look what you are doing to your feet. Denny would LOVE to be able to have feet that worked and look what you're doing to yours."

*blink*

And it was not lost on me. As I've fought these blisters I have thought often, "Thank God I'm not a diabetic" and I've thought of Denny and some of the foot sores he's had to fight. And what Georgia said had a large ring of truth to it. (Denny busted out laughing.)

I'm not caring properly for what I have.

So I strongly suspect this will be my last race. Don't hold me too it. I'm an endorphin junky and I'm really really really struggling in a big way to quit the training.

But right now... it's looking like I'm done.

We'll see...

That medal is cool as hell though. It really is...


Posted by Boudicca at 09:14 PM | Comments (9)

October 22, 2009

Freaky Admissions

I've been having problems with my new cell phone. If you recall, I finally joined the mainstream and truly plugged in, getting myself a really nice phone with picture taking capabilities, a scheduler, internet access etc.

What I did not realize is how high maintenance a phone such as a Blackberry is, as opposed to my crappy little flip phone that charges in five minutes, and can take a licking and keep on ticking. If I'd realized it, I'd not have gotten it. (Fortunately it was on special for $50.)

I went running with it about two weeks ago. I consider running with my phone normal wear and tear. I RARELY run without my cell phone. It's a safety thing for me. I've had to use it too many times for someone to pick me up during long trainings due to injury, bad weather, whatever. Anyway, I came back from my run and the keyboard was locked up. According to the phone company, there was moisture in it.

I ran a full marathon, a half marathon, hundreds and scads of miles with my old phone and never once had a problem. I go out with this phone ONE TIME and I have moisture issue.

This was not the phone for me. It's fun, but in two years, when this one finally breaks, I'll find a cheap flip phone again. I don't need all the whistles and bells and I'm still not plugged into the internet, which at this point would only be good for SEC football scores or weather.

So for my story... I walk into the cell store to get my new phone. (It was replaced free of charge, even though I did not buy the insurance. I didn't expect it... but neither did they probably expect someone so conciliatory and polite. I live in S. FL. They were probably ready for cursing and rudeness.) And as I was standing there at the counter, in walked a 5'11" blonde, skinny as a rail, wearing short shorts, a tight little tshirt, and low heels.

She absolutely OOZED, beyotch or better yet, crazy beyotch. But she flounced in and was polite as the young man rushed to help her.

And the following conversation occurred to the best of my recollection:

Her: My phone was taken from me, thrown to the ground, the battery split away, and now it drops calls. Can you help me?

Salesman: *big pause, looks at the phone* Who threw it on the ground? *turning the phone around in his hand*

Her: The cops.

Salesman:

Her:

Salesman: Really?

Her: It's a long story.

And he led her back to his counter where whatever issue was or was not resolved. At that point, I'd tuned out. It wasn't my business and I was still too stunned by what I'd accidentally overheard. (She was standing four feet from me when she entered.)

So, this is what I asked my son, "Would you have said any of that?"

Me? I'd have walked in and said "I dropped my phone. It's now dropping calls. Can you help me?"

NEVER would I have phrased it the way she did. Good Lord.

Me thinks that some cop got tired of some attitude.

But I could be wrong...

Off to Atlanta to see Mo and the baby. Tomorrow morning I am sitting. I hear she plays pattycake! I can't wait to smooch on those big baby cheeks.

More later...

Posted by Boudicca at 02:55 PM | Comments (11)

October 20, 2009

Mr. Mustard in the Family Room doing the Twist

You absolutely have not lived until you've seen a 10 year old extroverted blonde haired wisp of a boy, dancing through your home dressed in black long johns and wearing a yellow mustard bottle costume.
I walked in to find Mustard Man dancing like a sprite in my family room.

Yes there will be pictures. So daggum funny, I actually thought of signing up for a Youtube account just so others could see it in full action.

It would also give more of a sense of what I actually live with.

I passed on it, but it did occur.

I think this could be an entertaining Halloween...

Posted by Boudicca at 09:47 PM | Comments (3)

October 19, 2009

How Halloween Came to be About Gassy Condiments

Halloween is here again and my boys are getting older.

Why, it was just 7 years ago when Bones changed costumes five times during the evening. In my mini-van he had these little hooded towels that were sewn as... something. There was the bumblebee, the lady bug, a shark, and Stitch from Lilo and Stitch. Then he had his real costume which was a Lion costume I'd sewn four years prior, worn by every brother. (It was a cool lion costume.)

And so that Halloween evening, every time Bones got in the car, he changed his costume.

I should have seen that as a sign of things to come... yet I did not.

Since that Halloween, with all the boys, we have gone from cute to scary such as bloody ghouls or black clad death to ninjas. We have many many ninja costumes.

We went through a stage where we were pretty much all about the weapons. We have every type of fake weapon you could imagine, from assorted ninja weapons to scythes, swords that are four feet long, to some pointy spiky ball thing hanging from chains... all thankfully in plastic.

Other parents spent time with their children at the costume wall. My children held me captive at the weapon section.

Until this year.

Well, perhaps last year. Ringo and Mr. T stayed ghouly death-like, while Bones had to be a Pimp. Of course he has still not a clue what a pimp is, hell the kid has yet to ask about sex (thank God for that one... I can't imagine where the train of thought is going to go when we have THE talk with him), yet alone understand what a pimp actually does.

But I let him be a pimp and he was decked out, if you recall, in leopard skin and fake velvet with a hat and a walking cane.

So imagine my surprise when he told me what he wanted to be this year.

A banana.

I'm not kidding. Oooooo... scary! Watch out for the banana! You might slip!

A banana?

So off to the costume store we went today as I was actually afraid they'd run out of banana costumes.

Mr. T picked out his (more on that) and Bones got his banana costume. He put it on and he HATED it.

He felt as if the banana costume didn't cover enough of his body, it seemed deflated and the tip was droopy. I said, "Dude, I'm supposed to fill it full of tissue paper to get it all stuffed out."

He looked at me and his brothers and said with a forlorn face, "I'm a sad banana...."

Right.

So I had him take off the banana costume and go get another for we cannot have a Sad Banana on Halloween.

Hell, I couldn't believe we were having a banana... at all!

I figured he'd come back with something bloody, something ghouly with a beating heart pumping blood.

No.

He is now... a Bottle of Mustard.

And Mr. T?

He is going as a Whoopy Cushion. I kid you not.

We were at dinner and my husband said, "Great. Does this Whoopy Cushion make noise?"

Rolling my eyes incredulously I said, "Phht. OF COURSE IT DOES!" and as if on cue, Mr. T made big gas noises with his mouth.

The ultimate whoopy cushion and quite honestly, nothing could be more appropriate. Perhaps we should feed him lots of dairy before he goes trick or treating... pizza and ice cream always make him nice and gassy.

And so that is what they are this year, no more death, we've moved on to mustard and whoopy cushions.

Meanwhile, my eldest and his buddy have decided to not quite hang up their costumes. Halloween has become... a performance art. My son is going as Yoda, his buddy as Darth Vader, and they are going to go door to door and have light saber fights as people open the door.

Halloween Performance Art.

Bones said, "People are going to slam the door. You're going to bore them."

I'm not so sure slamming the door is what will happen. This will be interesting...

Posted by Boudicca at 08:39 PM | Comments (5)

October 17, 2009

Bou's Recap: Gators vs. Razorbacks

Holy crap.

As one of my readers put in the comments, I don't need a stress test this year.

Third quarter, I leaned over and said to my husband, "Can we leave now?"

Sick. I was sick. I was sick for the entire game. I can't take games like that and here is why.

In the mid-80s when I was at UF, they had a coach named Galen Hall. EVERY FRICKIN' game was like that. EVERY GAME. We could go into the 4th quarter, actually in The Swamp, and we'd be leading by two touchdowns and then completely frickin' blow it and lose by a field goal or a touch down.

Holy crap.

I went to UF with a friend of mine from HS. We used to sit together at the games. (He is the only person I keep in touch with from UF, but I don't consider him a college friend. We've known each other since I was 14.) Anyway, we'd sit together, and he'd scream that it was another heart attack game.

I txted him during today's game as he now lives in LA, and said, "It's another frickin' heart attack game. I can't take this. I'm too old for this now."

He'd already turned off the TV. I didn't have that luxury. I was stuck there until the bitter end.

So here are my thoughts...

1) I thought the officiating was very good. I am amazed, however, at how much officials don't see, just because there is so much going on. However, as my one son pointed out, it is amazing as well at how much they really DO see. We were sitting in the North Endzone and saw things that were just frickin' WRONG. But, officials cannot be everywhere. It is what it is...

2) I don't think the UF offense showed up today. Their receivers need fly paper on their hands, on their uniform, on their arms...next game.

3) The Arkansas offense DID show up and Thank God the UF defense didn't stay home and make too many mistakes. They saved us.

4) This UF team is not BCS material. My husband and I disagree on this sharply. This is NOT a BCS team and if they do make it that far, they're going to get their clocks cleaned by someone.

5) If UF makes it past Alabama for the SEC title, I'll be surprised. If they look like they did today 'Bama will take it.

6) The Gators absolutely, without a shadow of a doubt, would not have won today if it were not a home game. If it had been in Arkansas, UF would have had their first loss of the season.

Which brings me to what you cannot see on TV. You cannot see the energy.

I am telling you now, there was a collective consciousness of the crowd to actually GIVE the team their positive energy. You could feel it. The cheering changed. It was no longer cheering for good plays, but cheering to save their asses. Every scream was encouragement. Every yell was personal. Every holler was meant for their ears... for the team to be lifted.

I don't remember that 20 years ago. It honestly was not the way it is now. It was as if the crowd were connected in some way to the team by some sort of invisible cord.

I truly believe the team could not have made it without the Gator fans today.

Today... players and fans were One. It was an amazing thing to be a part of.

However, next time, I'll pass. My heart can't take it. Seriously, I'm too old for that crap.

Good grief.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:42 PM | Comments (7)

Reflections of a Former Gator

We are in Gainesville, FL for homecoming. It has been 18 years since I've been back. I attended UF for two years before I transferred to a smaller school. I didn't do poorly at UF, I did fine, but I didn't excel either. Some folks can learn wherever they are... they can fit and do fine. I needed more one on one... or rather one on 50 as opposed to one on 900.

Needless to say, I've done a lot of reflecting on it this last week. How would I feel coming back? Would I remember the two years fondly? Would I wish I had stayed?

And the answer is... although I have some good memories, I don't regret for one minute leaving and in fact, I think it was the single best thing I did in my life. My transferring to a smaller school... truly changed my life.

I don't keep in touch with one person I went to school with at UF. I had roommates, I was active, I had friends. Yet not one person was someone I felt that I needed to keep in my life. Whereas, when I transferred, I met VW and my girlfriend married to the Marine, neither of which I can imagine not being in my life.

Studying until 2AM with others in your class will forge some very strong friendships. I never made 'class friends' at UF, only friends from the dorm or another social group I hung out with. At the smaller school, my friends were formed with those within my major taking classes I was taking. We had... common miseries, if you will.

My professors at the small school took me in and had me attend meetings with them within their fields. I met executives at corporations as my professors went to dinners and dragged us along.

If I had not transferred, I'd never have gotten my job at Company X, which is a Fortune 50 company, making top dollar, and making more lifelong friends... a route that had me meeting my husband and creating the path to where I am now.

My only regret. I have one. And it is not something I knew to change. I wish I'd had better guidance counselors in high school. I wish someone had spoken to me about finding a college that fit me. I wish I'd had... guidance. My Mom at that time had not finished college and TGOO went to the Naval Academy. My folks, through absolutely NO FAULT of theirs, were not exactly knowledgeable about the selection of higher learning.

Honestly, I think my generation, or perhaps the half generation behind me, was probably one of the first generations where... kids just expected to graduate from high school and then go on to college. Mass quantities of girls and boys going off to college and the girls? The girls could actually be anything they wanted to be... anything.

And a quick aside note about my Mom... my Mom ended up graduating from U Mich, one of the finest State Universities in higher learning, and forged herself a very successful career after age 45. You talk about an inspiration. I know at least one of my female readers is embarking on some serious life changes and contemplating going back to school and having a career change and to that I say: Just Do It.

My Mom is probably why I'm not afraid to think about what I want to do next. Do I want to go back to college when my kids are grown and find a different profession? What do I want to do next? I don't feel... confined with what I am doing now. I definitely don't feel defined.

Anyway, I chose the colleges to apply to based on who I 'heard' had the best engineering school and never took into account whether it would be the right choice for me. I eliminated Auburn from my choice as I thought my grandfather might stroke, he being such a huge Alabama fan.

I'm not kidding. That's why I didn't go to Auburn.

So looking back, I wish I'd had guidance counselors give me advice. I'd maybe have looked at smaller institutions and honestly, I might have become a civil engineer, a profession I honestly think I would have been happy with.

But given that, I think that in the end, it worked out all fantastically well. So in reality, I'd change nothing.

We're having an absolutely wonderful time here at UF. For those wondering why we are here... my husband received his doctorates from UF. My boys are just now taking an interest in football, my eldest thinking of colleges, so we're going to start coming to more games and we'll be looking at colleges for him soon.

It's on the horizon.

My children will not go to UF. None of them have any desire... they all state it is too big. Besides, Mr. T has decided he's a Georgia Tech man, or as Bones likes to say, "He's going to that Bumble Bee school." There is still much time, and minds can be changed, but we're starting to look now.

We definitely don't want to end up thinking of colleges only to realize too late, that bus left already.

And on that note: GO GATORS!!! They need to beat the Pig People.

I'll be sitting in the North Endzone, wearing a blue Gator shirt and white Gator hat... oh wait, I'll be blending.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:26 AM | Comments (9)

October 15, 2009

Swamping

We are off for the weekend, starting tomorrow at lunchtime. We're taking the boys to Gator Homecoming, going to both Gator Growl and the game against Arkansas.

This will be the first time in 24 years that I've been in The Swamp. Let me be clear, this needs to be a crushing blow out victory for the Gators against Arkansas, because I'm not 20 anymore and I can't take a heart attack game.

How many games did I frickin' sit through where the Gators would be winning until the 4th quarter, and winning by a large spread, only to lose it or come close to losing it in the last minute of the game?

Yeah, my heart can't take that kind of stress anymore.

I found an old Gator sweatshirt from college (I went there for two years and then transferred to a smaller school) and found it fits my 12 year old. I have said often, I'm about the size of a 12 year old. He will be wearing it tomorrow night as it's supposed to be cold.

Well, cold by Florida standards.

We're off. Should be fun... we need to get out of this crazy frickin' town.

Ciao.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:06 PM | Comments (3)

October 14, 2009

Days 'o the Week

By accident, Elisson guessed this next topic of language in the comments of my last language post. By the way, I do say jewlry, and Feb-you-ary. I also say skool. I hear people saying skoowil, and it's one smooth word for me.

There are, however, no 'r's' in my Washington. Creeks are CrEEk and not crick and there is not an L in Chimney.

All things I've heard through the years.

But what brought this about, was I was speaking to my sister, Mo, about her lack of "h" in "wh" when she said, "You say something else that always makes me laugh and I wonder where you got it from."

I was puzzled. "Really?" I replied, "What is it?"

She said, "Say the days of the week for me..."

And I started off, "Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday..."

She stopped, "There!"

"Wait, where?"

"Do it again..."

So I started again, "Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday..."

"Stop! Say it... the third day."

To which I replied, "Winsdy"

And she started to laugh.

She said, "I have no idea where you get that from, but you say Winsdy. No Winsday or Wensdy or Wensday, but WINsdy."

And I do. I mulled over the days of the week all night, spontaneously saying them to figure out... "How DO I say the days of the week?

I in fact say, "Mondy, Tuesdy, Winsdy, Thursdy", but then skip to Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

No clue why.

My folks happened to be passing through her place yesterday and when she spoke to me she said, "You get this Winsdy stuff from Dad."

I said, "He says WINSDY, like I do?"

And she said, "Well, he definitely ends everything in dy. Mom and I don't..."

So there you have it. The family is split once again, with my bro being the only one I don't know about. He, btw, told me it depends on where he is, with whom he is speaking, and what he is doing as to whether (whhhether) the H is pronounced.

A quick update on Bones, he passed his Hoot test, the answer was really 'stand in place for two hours', but he didn't remember that choice, and his one teacher really does hate him, but he started it. Let's see if she can be a big girl now and move on. Fortunately he only sees her once or twice a week.

He's been reprimanded and action has been taken, but I suspect that she will be childish and not let a little boy be a little boy and learn from a mistake... she will hold it over his head.

We shall see...

Posted by Boudicca at 05:02 PM | Comments (10)

October 13, 2009

Welcome to Planet Bones

Today we continue our 5th grade journey, unmedicated for ADHD.

The latest development is he has a teacher that absolutely HATES him. HATES. Fortunately, it is not one of his two primary teachers, who are just absolutely awesome. They get it, they're working with us, I love them.

Fifth grade will not be his best year academically, but it will be a time of great personal growth for him.

Silver lining and all that.

Anyway, I have to see the teacher tomorrow and explain his situation. I will bite my tongue as my first question really wants to be, "So, tell me, who is the adult here, you or my 10 year old ADHD son? Because... I can't seem to tell."

I shall refrain.

On a lighter note, but one that still kick started my adrenaline, Bones MUST pass something called a Reading Counts test from one of his two summer reading books and he waited until 9 weeks after reading the books... I just found out. As you may recall from comments to a different post taking computerized tests are not his forte. He must resist the overwhelming urge to choose an answer HE likes best, as opposed to the answer the computer deems right.

So he must take a computerized test on the story Hoot and he must pass it. That's it... he just has to pass it. I've already made peace with the fact it's not going to happen. The following conversation occurred to the best of my recollection, while in the asexual Mom-mobile driving home from school.

Bones: No, I didn't pass.

Me, deep breath: Ok, let's think. Do you happen to remember any of the questions that you may have gotten wrong? Mr. T read the book, so let's try to do a bit of a review.

Bones: Umm. Oh yeah! I know. OK, So-and-so comes across a bear in the woods. What does he do: a) stab him in the neck with a knife, b) scream like a girl, c) throw a sandwich at him or d) run away.

Me, pensive: OK. *deeper breath, and praying he did not pick "stab him in the neck with a knife"* What did you pick?

Bones: Throw a sandwich at him...

Mr. T: Bwahahahahaha

Me: NO. NO. You did not...

Bones: No. I didn't. Umm. I picked screamed like a girl.

Me, not functioning right now with the overload of horrified adrenaline: You chose scream like a girl.

Mr. T: He didn't scream like a girl in that book!

Bones: Well... he ran away, I'm sure he was screaming like a girl. It's the same thing.

Me: No. No, it is not the same. You had two choices... he either ran or screamed like a girl, there was not an option of both. No. And do you remember him screaming like a girl in the book?

Bones: No, but you know he was...

Me:

Bones: But he ran.

Me: Yes. When you retake the test, he ran, OK?

Good Grief. I'm going to stroke. I need meds...

And the worst part is... I truly believe he really picked "Threw a sandwich at him." I KNOW deep in my heart... that was his answer.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:20 PM | Comments (7)

October 12, 2009

'Ell 'As No Fury

My eldest and I are currently in an annuniciation argument, if you will. It started with something that occurred this morning.

I let the construction guy in this morning as I was off to work when he said to me, "Bou, what grout are you using?"

Me: Grout?

Him: Grout.

Me: Sh--.

Him: I need it by 2:00.

Me: Dang...

How is it that my husband and I planned everything to the nth, yet we forgot we'd need grout? How is that? And he and I have even tiled before... we've together done a whole house and a kitchen!

So off I went to get grout, my picking a color called Summer Wheat. It's a darker brown than our tile and should hide dirt easily.

I picked up my son, he got in the car, looked at the samples and said, 'What color did you pick?"

To which I replied, "Summer Wheat."

I pronounce the 'h'. It's Whheat, although that is slightly exagerated. My Wh's have almost a light airy sound to them.

My son says 'weet'.

And this is when the argument started.

Ringo: Mom, the H is silent.

Me: No. It's whhheat. You say weet, like a bird is tweeting.

Ringo: Mom, ONLY Big Daddy (TGOO) pronounces the H's. You and Big.

Me: Please. Pronounce Where. (I say Whhhere.)

Ringo: It's wear.

Me: See, you have NO distinction between Whhhere you are going and whhhat you are wearing. You are wrong.

Ringo: I'm going to eliminate the H from your speech. You're wrong. And Aunt Mo sometimes pronounces the H, but only when she is mimicking you or Big. Those H's are SILENT.

Me: Fine. I will poll my readers...

To which his reply was, "Right. They're probably all over 40 and pronounce it like you do..." as if this is an age thing.

I do believe it is regional.

So dear readers, do you hear the H when you pronounce words such as wheat, when, where? Or are you pronouncing them weet, wen, and wear?

Inquiring minds want to know.

And if you think you pronounce your H, let me know, from what (whhat) area of the country do you reside... or did you learn to speak? Perhaps this is more of a Southern thing...

BTW, the title to this is in reference to the thought my son thinks I should be banned from all 'H's', not that I'm pissed off. Not right now... anyway.

Update: TGOO and Jerry found the proper way to write what I've been trying to convey, 'hw'. Why I never thought to look in the dictionary is beyond me...

Posted by Boudicca at 05:44 PM | Comments (43)

When Fashion Comes to your Bathroom

Because there has not been enough toilet blogging... I give you... the Hatbox. (Not to be confused with the Cat Box.)

Go HERE.

And HERE.

Or feel free to google hatbox toilet yourself.

And the story goes, my boys were in the plumbing store with my better half, looking at commodes when they stumbled across The Hatbox, which is also, evidently, electric.

And expensive.

The boys were oooing and ahhhing over it, great discussion, when my husband said, "Nope. It looks too much like a hamper. Someone will throw their clothes in it."

For me? Different reasons. As I said, I don't need elegant or fashion in my bathroom. Electric either for that matter. Besides... I hear it has reliability issues... probably from someone inadvertently putting their dirty clothes in it.

Good Grief.

(Interesting side note... when looking at the Kohler site, you can press on a color button and it will show you the hatbox in different colors. However, if you push on the black button, it will show you a picture of a black woman in a bathtub. No picture available. Very odd... Can't show you a picture of a black toilet, but I can show you a picture of a black woman? Looking for the train of thought here...)

Posted by Boudicca at 05:56 AM | Comments (4)

October 10, 2009

Reaching for New Lows in Blogging

Poor construction and water damage/rot issues have caused us to have to gut our Master Bathroom once and for all. Two years ago we replaced a wall and a ceiling. Now we're replacing the entire shower, the remaining shower walls (not necessarily part of the shower, but adjacent), the floor...

... and I decided, "Forget it. If someone is coming in to do all this work, we'll spend the extra money, have all the crappy tile pulled up and redo the bathroom.'

Yes, I've been taking pictures.

I did an inordinate amount of research both on quality and pricing for EVERYTHING. This took months of planning and is being funded by the tax return we received this year. Otherwise... we'd have just had to close off the bathroom and not used it.

Construction started Monday, I love the gentleman that is working in our bathroom as he's thorough, kind, and honest. His being here has taken most of the stress out of the project.

Having picked everything out in advance has taken out a good chunk of any remaining stress. We've communicated openly, have been working with the various subcontractors, made decisions in a timely manner, and all of that is making it much easier.

So what is the stress?

The frickin' commode.

At the last minute, which is not like me, I decided we should change the commode. Actually, I nixed the idea as I didn't want to spend one penny over my budget and the guys at work convinced me I was being stupid. They felt certain that the toilet I had did not work as efficiently as it should and probably used more water than it should as well.

They were right. I called my husband and said, "Fine, let's replace it."

And here's a quick segue difference in men and women. For the last two weeks Bones and Mr. T have been making a joke about Universal Rundle. I don't get the joke. But I hear the snickering, Bones saying things like, "I changed the name now, T, it's Universal GRUNdle."

Loss.

Absolute loss for me.

Until Sunday, my in-laws were here for dinner and Bones and T start on their Universal Rundle jokes, lost on me still, and my brother in law looks at me and says, "Universal Rundle? Where have I heard that?" I replied, "No clue. Bones and T say it all the time. I have no idea what they're talking about..."

We just kind of looked at each other, shrugged, and kept cooking.

Finally my brother in law, still listening to the boys carry on, says, "OH! It's the name of the toilet."

Still clueless I said, "Hunh. Really?"

He laughed and said, "Casual reading."

Folks, that went right over my head... until I started researching toilets and realized, the name of our toilet is stamped between the bowl and the water tank.

Women don't look there often... once a week when I'm cleaning? Maybe? If I'm paying attention? Men look there... every day. Multiple times a day.

And so I've been laughing, calling it our new Mars/Venus incident.

Anyway, flash forward to Friday, my husband went to the plumbing store to look at toilets. He has been on every toilet site looking at videos and reading so as to make the right choice. Really, to some degree, it's kind of disturbing watching these videos. He's been on this site a lot, choose toilets and you'll have videos to choose from where you will find bowls filled with plastic filled tubes.

Sorry. I'm not offended, but... I don't know. There is an ick factor. At least they made the plastic filled tubes multi-colored... they aren't brown.

So he's in the plumbing store with Bones and T and he's talking to the woman about commodes and he can't remember the name of what we have.

The woman names them off, "Toto? American Standard? Kohler?" and each is met with a No as my husband looks at the boys and asks only to hear them say, "Uh. I don't remember..."

It was like that frickin' cartoon with the singing frog that won't sing in front of people. Probably earlier in the morning they were singing some Universal Rundle song and now? Nothing.

Anyway, the woman sees the list of what my husband has been looking at and starts to talk to him about 'elegant commodes'.

What?

IT'S A COMMODE. I'm all about form, fit and function. My only esthetic requirement be that it is WHITE. It needs to fit in the bathroom, function, be easy to clean. THAT'S it! Preferably, we can GET RID of that daggum plunger.

I know. TMI. But seriously, I'm over it. The only reason I'm getting rid of the toilet is so that we can get something that doesn't require double and triple flush and waste water. Otherwise... please... it's a functional tool.

But this is how he's choosing it, with esthetics being the deciding factor after he's narrowed down his list by performance. Our lists look completely different. Evidently the truly high performance commodes are 'ugly'.

Finally I said, "Fine. Pick whatever you want. I don't care. Don't spend a lot of money. And it needs to flush..."

We'll see. Honestly, who would have thought that picking out a frickin' commode would be our big issue when redoing a bathroom?

Really.

Posted by Boudicca at 07:33 PM | Comments (12)

October 09, 2009

Love Fest 2009, Must I Watch it Anymore?

I was at work today, head in the computer, in a bit of a fog when I heard the words "Obama" and "Nobel Peace Prize" in the same sentence.

I swung around to the girl I job share my job with, a friend of mine for over 20 years and I said, "WHAT?"

She looked at me with a smirk and said, "Yup. Barack Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize."

Now here's the thing, I had been hearing rumblings about it all morning, but I never actually heard THE NAME. I had NO CLUE who anyone was talking about.

On the radio station I flipped to, just in time to hear, "... and he received this year's Nobel Peace Prize..." missed it again.

So now I'm hearing the name and I was flipping out at the absolute absurdity of it. I mean, it was frickin' UNREAL when Al Gore won it for promoting Green. He beat out Irena Sendler... who is probably sitting damn close to if not right beside Mother Teresa right now.

Holy crap.

So this is the deal. We all know now the award is a complete joke. We suspected it was, but now... it's been validated.

Here's my question, who in the hell nominated the dork? We won't know for 50 years, which unfortunately puts me at 94 years old, which is NOT going to happen since I'll be lucky to make it to 80, so I'll never know, but my kids will.

Wouldn't it be a riot if we find out in 50 years that some Republican did it as a joke to show how Europe is in such a Love Fest with Obama, a man who has done NOTHING with his life but campaign or community organize, that they are willing to give him an award they gave the likes of Elie Wiesel and Mother Teresa?

I guess I'll never know. And I have a strong feeling, in 50 years, it will come to show the man may do some good things, but nothing that will warrant his award today.

Until then, I consider the Nobel Peace Prize along the same lines as the Prize one would acquire from a Cracker Jack Box.

Except I'd prefer to have the Cracker Jack Box instead please. I like my awards with more substance...

Posted by Boudicca at 09:45 PM | Comments (10)

October 08, 2009

The Many Faces of Bones

I have two varying, but kind of funny stories about Bones. One of them needs some background information.

Bones refers to the time before he was born as 'When I was still in God's hands'. It is something he picked up at a little pre-school I sent him to as a toddler and approaching the cusp of his teen/pre-teen years, he still uses the phrase and he does so with the utmost sincerity.

So for the first story...

Last Friday night we attended my eldest's high school's football game. (Sidenote, their team SUCKS, but I have been told this is a 'rebuilding year'. Hunh.) 'Twas the first high school football game I have attended in... 25 years?

My husband was unable to attend, Mr. T had the swine flu, so I loaded up the asexual mom-mobile with Bones, Ringo, and two of Ringo's friends.

We got to the game and the teenagers disappeared, not because I'm not cool (they like me), but because they had folks to hang with, people to see... things to do. Bones traveled between me and the concession stand.

At 10 years old, my old adage still stands true for him, "It's all about the snacks".

I sat with a teacher I know and a friend of mine whose son graduated and now works for the band director.

After half time, the heavens opened and a torrential rain came, leaving people running to their cars, and me huddled under my umbrella looking like a mushroom. I had brought the teenagers to the game, and would not leave unless they wanted to. Bones quickly found me, the teenagers decided they didn't want to stay, and we made our way home.

Now typically, Bones knows a lot of kids at these games. His friends have older brothers and sisters that go to this high school, but for whatever reason, this particular game... he knew no one, except a couple 11 year olds from his school... 6th graders.

And the rain came down and down and down, and Bones was drenched and full of happy wet energy and the 11 year olds said to my 10 year old, "Hey, stick around. It's raining. We can watch all the girls in their wet t-shirts."

Bones related this to me in the car. He said he looked at them and said, "These girls are too old for you! They don't care anything about you!" and then he said, "No thanks, I'm leaving" and he came and found me. He said in his mind he was disgusted at the 11 year olds and thought it was not very nice.

I wasn't sure what to say. Don't get me wrong, I'm all about positive reinforcement, which I did... profusely, but inside, something touched me very deep by what he did. Not only did he see a wrong and walk away, something I am perpetually afraid he will not do as a teenager, but he didn't like what he saw as dirtiness... and in his eyes, the knowing of right and wrong.

And he walked. He is full of suprises. My sweet little boy.

Right.

And now we have the second story, which is full of vibrato.

Driving home from school today, the two younger boys were in the back picking on each other as brothers do, calling each other names, making fun of each other, poking, prodding and being all around... pains in the neck. I can filter it all out, by the way. In my world... I am deaf to it all at this point, unless blood is shed or I hear someone is hurt. I can pick and choose, I guess.

And for some reason, my hearing tuned in and the following conversation occurred to the best of my recollection:

Bones: Oh yeah? Well I can remember when I was still in God's hands.

T: No you can't.

Bones: Oh yes I can. I was looking down on all of you and beside me was the Super Model that I'm going to marry one day.

Me, awake to what is going on around me suddenly: *blink* Super Model?

T: You're not going to marry a super model.

Bones in a taunting hystercal voice: Yeah, well, you don't think I have it in me, but yooooou'll see. Just you waiiiiit and seeeeeeee...

Holy crap. Mr. T and I could not quit laughing.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:21 PM | Comments (3)

October 07, 2009

Funerial Thoughts... Maybe Not so Nice

I wrote last night of the excellent traditions the Jewish faith has concerning burials, the burying of their own dead, instead of paying some stranger to do so.

A little background, my husband is very entrenched within the Jewish community. Many of his friends are Jewish and he is considered family to some. My husband is also very Italian looking... as... he's Italian. Although he has been mistaken for Cuban while we were in Miami, and once or twice Lebanese, he is most definitely Italian to most who meet him and in his youth, was compared to a young Al Pacino.

The graveside service was coming to a close. The burial finished, we stood to the side with some of the family and waited. One of my husband's closest friends came up to us, a devout Jew, becoming more Orthodox as he ages, the following very funny conversation occurred... to the best of my recollection:

Friend, in a hushed whisper: I decided today, when I die, I don't want people I don't like throwing dirt on my grave.

Husband and me:

Friend: I'm serious. I don't want people I don't like shoveling dirt on top of me. Only my homies.

My husband, looking like quite the Jewish Mafia Don, wearing his Yarmulke and a beautifully tailored suit, laughed deeply and quietly.

I in turn, grinning, said, "We'll be the shovel guard. We'll make sure nobody gets the shovel you didn't like."

I keep laughing about it.

I guess I keep laughing in part because... I totally get it. There are people in this world that I dislike so intensely, that if they showed up to my funeral, I'd flat want my husband to say, "WTF are you doing here? Get the hell out."

Not that he would. That's not his style. That's MY style.

There have been some people that I know have not treated him well in this life, that if they showed up to his funeral, in all my grief, I will have no problems walking up to them, in front of God and Country and saying, "Get out." I'll even maybe pop off a good rant.

It could be a funeral to remember...

I don't know if my girlfriend, DK, who reads me, will remember this, but there was a guy at work that I despised. He was a lying cheat. Everything that came out of his mouth was two faced and a bold faced lie. I knew in my heart he was cheating the government. He was the one and only person I nearly punched out at work.

Yes, I said that. We will attribute the urge towards violence as... 1) I was young, 2) he was a big jerk, 3) I was pissed off that he was allowed to be such a complete a$$hole, 4) he was lying, 5) he was lying about MY group and I was taking it personally, and 6) I was young.

I know I've posted about this before. We were in a meeting and the argument was escalating, and he was lying more and more, and I hate liars, and I was getting angrier and angrier and someone called him on his lying, and he was becoming a bigger a$$hole, which I did not think was possible, and I started shouting at him what a lying piece of trash he was, and he responded, and I lunged across the table at him, and my very big male co-worker sitting next to me, caught me by the shoulders and held me down as profanity laced words spewed forth from my mouth, and... the meeting was adjourned.

Not a highlight of my career. I was patted on the back, told it was OK, everyone saw where I was coming from, but I wasn't ever allowed to hit anyone or I'd get fired.

Seriously, not a bright shining stellar moment of my past.

Four or five years later... the SOB died. It was unexpected, he was... probably in his mid 50s. He was pretty young if I recall. I had transferred out by then to a different, but very cool job. I got the phone call from DK that he was dead.

It went something like this:

DK: Hey, did you get the word? Ghengis Khan is dead.

Me: No... I hadn't heard.

DK: You going to his funeral? *snicker*

Me: Hell no. He was an a$$hole when he was alive. Now he's just a dead a$$hole.

You know... because I have such a way with words.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:19 PM | Comments (9)

October 06, 2009

Three Shovels of Dirt

I had a funeral to attend yesterday with my husband. It was a family member of his business partner. She was 90 and had a good long life, but that does not mean those close are not entitled to grieve.

Afterall, they loved her, she was a good woman, and now she's gone. Her death leaves a marked void in their lives. There is never enough time for those we love.

It was another Jewish funeral for me and as always, I immersed myself in all that was around me for a better understanding. My favorite Rabbi was there, a tremendously spiritual Orthodox man, I loved when he spent the time speaking with my husband and me when we sat Shiva with the family at the last passing of a family member... that time a man close to us and much too young. We sat every day of Shiva and we found out later, we were the only non-family members to do so... added to the fact, we were the only Non-Jews as well.

I love the Rabbi's use of language. He has a quiet way of putting things together that make things clearer and provide such a large picture.

We walked to the graveside for the burial after the service. Sure enough, the big mound of dirt with shovels sticking out awaited us.

Single handedly, this is my favorite ritual of the Jewish funerals I have attended. As I stated before, I like that the family and friends bury the dead and not some $10 an hour stranger who could not care a wit less about the person in the grave, what they were to whom, what their life was like... how much they were loved.

It is a mitzvah to help bury the dead. And before we started, the Rabbi had a moment of silence so we could think of anything we had done that would have wronged the deceased and to ask their forgiveness.

I loved that. I absolutely loved that.

We got in line to take the shovels... the first shovel full is poured over the grave with the shovel back holding the dirt... upside down if you will, to show the reluctance of having to perform the mitzvah. I guess, the heaviness of heart. And then we took two shovels full on the right side of the shovel, replacing the shovel into the dirt after our mitzvah was complete.

At the end of the service, we formed two lines facing each other, and the grieving family passed through as we expressed our condolences.

As the Rabbi started the graveside ceremony, when I realized we were able to perform the Mitzvah of assisting in her burial, I looked at my husband and said, "We're doing this. It is an honor. And you know I want this at my funeral. I don't want strangers pouring dirt on my box. It needs to be family and friends."

He said nothing.

I said, "You know it. You know I'm serious."

Solemnly he replied, 'I know you are."

It was an honor yesterday for me to assist in her burial. Every time I participate... I feel such a great sense of closure and... honor.

A sense of Peace.

There was no Shiva this week. The Jewish faith is in the midst of a holiday called Sukkot. (My Jewish readers, please correct me if I've said something not right...) Holidays are a joyful time, so there is no sitting Shiva. The family has had some small gatherings, but that is the extent.

I wish them a peace in knowing she had a long wonderful life and that she will not suffer. I wish them a peace that they know in their hearts that she loved them as they loved her... and that love of her keeps her with them, even in death.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:40 PM | Comments (9)

October 05, 2009

Tilted at Disney

My loyal reader George forwarded me the following site, that had the following video that is techno geek cool. (The site explains how tilt shift is done.)

It's a couple minutes long and you may not want to watch the entire thing, but you may find, that like me, after a minute, you are drawn in.

It's a weird effect, this tilt shifted effect. Add to it how they did the fast motion almost 1920s silent film effect, it's a very cool video.

Posted by Boudicca at 08:39 PM | Comments (2)

October 04, 2009

I'll Take the Word that Begins with QU for... Free

We were at dinner the other night when Mr. T had some sort of fit about what they did in PE.

Said he, "They had the boys' PE and girls' PE together in the cafeteria... and we had to dance to some thing they had on Oprah."

The dinner table became silent as we pictured the 7th grade boys and their reaction to having to dance, as well as I was wondering what in the heck they'd shown on Oprah that they were dancing to.

Evidently Oprah had the Black Eyed Peas (Yes, Dad, that is a group) sing I've Gotta Feeling and there were 25,000 people dancing to it while Oprah's crew taped it.

So on and on Mr. T went about it, how ridiculous it was, when he blurted, "I felt like such a queer."

Great.

I hate language like that in my home. I tolerate a lot, but homophobic or rascist language isn't tolerated.

And of course Bones had to say, loudly as there is no volume for him, "What's a queer?!".

Nice.

After I admonished T for the language, the conversation continued with Mr. T and Ringo explaining to him. I just listened in to see how they were going to dig themselves out.

The next day I was alone with Mr. T and I said, "You can't say things like that around Bones. He is much younger than you. You and your buddies at school may say things that are completely inappropriate, but you keep it with your buddies. Don't bring it home. You have a little brother."

When the two older boys were alone, I reiterated. And then I finished it off with, "Because... he now has a new odd word in his vocabulary and I frickin' GUARAN_TEE YOU, that it's going to show up on a test. Somehow, the word 'queer' is going to end up as the answer on a test. Mark my words..."

The boys get it and are laughing, but realize it's a problem. They've been trying to figure out in what class and how that Bones will answer, 'Queer' as an answer.

I have the horror already played out in my head. It will be religion. Something will be asked where the answer is Mary, Queen of Peace.

I'm telling you... in his mind, the word Queer fill fit just... perfectly.

I am willing to play the bet. Good Grief.

Posted by Boudicca at 04:40 PM | Comments (6)

October 03, 2009

Deriving the Definition of... Geek

My husband was working on a lecture when I said, 'I need you to get the attic stairs down for me. I need to look for my old calculus book.'

He looked at me with a combination of 'oh sh--' and 'are you nuts?'. It's hot in Florida still. He kind of shook his head and said, 'OK.'

I had really really hoped that the books in the guest bedroom were my old math books. Before making my way to the attic, I yelled after him from the guestroom closet, "Hey! Did you keep your calculus book from college?"

His reply was an emphatic, "NO! Why in the hell would I keep that?"

Still I had hopes as I just KNEW there was a box of books in the bottom of that daggum closet and I wasn't going to have to climb into the 200 degree attic to look for a book tucked in between luggage, Christmas decorations, old baby clothes, and crap that seriously needs to be thrown away.

My husband and I need to clean out that attic before we die. It's not fair to leave that mess to our kids.

Anyway, so here I was in the guestroom closet, box open, pulling books out... histology, neurology, organic chemistry, anatomy, something about bacterial something or other... and as I was pulling them out I was thinking, 'Who in the HELL would WANT to study this crap?" Good Grief. As I tossed each book aside I thought, "I would rather poke my eyes out with a frickin' pencil than study any of this crap. Now where are my Math books..."

And that's when I realized how completely different my husband and I are. I was going through his old texts like he was thinking when I asked him if he had his old calculus book. It definitely takes all kinds...

Up into the attic I went, and fished around until I found them. I found them along with a ton of other books that belong on my bookshelves... all my Tom Clancy novels, Stephen King, Leon Uris... what in the heck was this doing in my attic?!

I brought the math books down, opened them up, grabbed pencil and paper... and it was as if I was in calculus all over, and it all came flooding back and I felt myself giddy as I worked problem after problem.

I'm not kidding. I have spent the last 3 hours doing a chapter's worth of calculus homework... and feeling like it was an amazing evening.

It's a sickness. Seriously... even I know... something's not right with that.

I am such a geek.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:23 PM | Comments (19)

October 02, 2009

Take Two Bayer and Call Me in the Morning

I think I've said before how much I love working with the guys in my office. Most of them are over 65, they are having a great time in life, they're mellow, and they really get what's important and what's not. They get that my family should come first.

Yesterday, I found a downfall with that age group, in particular if they all have heart problems. (The heart conditions aren't a problem other than the time one of them tried to have a heart attack at work... but that's an old story.)

Life has been very stressful lately. I can't escape it. Things are very bad at work, so stressful that one of the engineers I work with at Company X is very sick, at home sick, and his co-workers thought instead he had just up and quit. It's pretty bad when the economy is a piece of trash, people are getting laid off, jobs are hard to find in any industry and the stress levels are so high that people immediately assume someone had enough and walked and would rather be on welfare than do what we do for a living.

It's stressful at home. School, kids, stuff. It doesn't stop.

It hit a crescendo this week and yesterday as I was staring into my computer at work, the beginnings of a migraine started.

I know the signs. I frickin' KNOW the signs. And inside I thought, "Nah... maybe not. Maybe I am just wearing my hair too tight." So I let my hair down and I continued to play the 'oh no, I'll be fine game' until six hours into I realized... "I'm in deep doo doo."

I'm 44 years old and had my first migraine at age 9. After 35 years of migraines, I know the timetable. And it was at 3:00 when I realized, "I have one hour before I vomit."

I still had to pick up a kid from school.

I said from my cube to my Tech Lead, "Do you have any ibuprofen?" It's the only thing that works for me. Tylenol, aspirin... anything doesn't touch it.

He answered to the negative. I walked over to Joe's cube and asked. He's 65 and said, "No, but I have this..." and he showed me a bottle of Bayer.

I thanked him profuseley as I quietly kicked myself for not replenishing the stock in my purse. That's when he said, "Wait! I know where we can get some!"

With that we walked into the next office, to one of his buddy's desk, a buddy gone for the day, where he opened the desk drawer and pulled out... a bottle of Bayer.

I thanked him... and said, "No... it's good..." and he said, "Wait! I have another place to check!" where we walked to yet another one of my co-worker's desks, opened their credenza and found... a bottle of Bayer.

See the trend here?

Folks, if any of you are cardiologists, if you think for a second that the men over 65 are not listening about aspirin helping to prevent strokes and heart attacks, you are wrong. I am here to tell you, I think every man I work with has a bottle of Bayer in his desk drawer.

Good Grief.

I ended up leaving early to stop by the drug store. I was nearly too late, as I waited for Ringo to get out of school, wondering if I'd have to throw up in my lunch box. It was one of the worst one's I've had in ages... alternating between my upper molars screaming and the fire around the periphery of my skull while my brains wanted to explode out the front of my face.

Two ibuprofen and one hour of sleep and I was good to go. I restocked my drugs today... they'll be in my desk next to my lysol disinfecting wipes... the essentials for working in an office.

Ringo said on the drive home, as I fought the sun from burning out my eyes and tried to keep from vomiting while driving, "Mom, do you need me to drive?"

Right.

In his dreams. Next year however... will be another story.

Posted by Boudicca at 11:02 PM | Comments (5)

Everyone Loves Chris

If you've not read Chris Rock's take on the Polanski horror show, go HERE.

Not only did he nail it, but he was funny doing so.

I don't much about Chris Rock... but as of now, I like that guy.

Update: Here's a site with the video of Rock on Jay.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:22 PM | Comments (6)

Who Needs Friends?!

There are friends you would go to the Ends of the Earth for.

Then there are the friends you thought you'd go to the Ends of the Earth until they think you can tutor Calculus and have a student lined up for you.

Granted it's HER student. I'm the sub tutor.

Still.

It's been 25 years folks. Will it come back?

Excuse me while I spend time in the attic tomorrow looking for my old Calculus book. (Yes, I kept all my math books.)

Meanwhile, feel free to go throw some small stones at VW. Good Grief. If I didn't love her so much, I might have to throttle her...

Posted by Boudicca at 09:01 PM | Comments (5)

October 01, 2009

Save Ringo!

I'm writing this to amuse my Dad. Bonus if others think it is as well...

Ringo was sick last week, if you recall. He had the Swine Flu, or the PC name of H1N1. Overall, it was a non-event for him. Headache, scratchy throat, minor congestion, fatigue for 48 hours, he has had colds that were far worse. Certainly his bout with pneumonia 15 months ago was far far worse.

That Wednesday, his first day of missed school and the day he was diagnosed, he did nothing but sleep and eat vegetables. That appears to be his MO, when he is sick, he eats a lot of salad.

My husband came home from work and said, "I don't want this! I run a business, I can't afford to catch this! Stay out of my space!" which banned him from the couch my husband sits on. That was about it.

Dinner time came, I put it on the table and asked Ringo if he was going to eat. He said no, but slunk into the room and sat down, changing his mind and taking a big plateful of broccoli. That's what he ate... and when he finished, he slunk back to bed.

The next evening, while sitting at the dinner table, Ringo having his appetite back, my husband jokingly said something about Ferris Bueller. He said we should have Saving Ringo signs all over the school with kids with cups taking up a fund. We could start a rumor that he needed a kidney transplant.

Laughing, we did, when out of the mouth of Bones we heard, 'Yeah, well, I told all the kids in my class today that Ringo was in a mini-coma..."

*blink*

"Mini-coma?" said I. "What in the heck is a mini-coma and NO your brother is not in any sort of coma."

Leaning on his elbow, talking with his fork to punctuate his words, he said thoughtfully, "It's when you sleep all day and then come out to eat vegetables."

We laughed, pointed at my husband and said something like, "Yeah, well, there's your Kidney transplant right there... except Ringo's in a coma instead."

That was Thursday. Ringo has been in school since Monday.

TODAY was the two younger boys' book fair at school. I was asked to be there by Bones. I have no clue why, but he wanted me there.

I walked in and was talking to some of the Moms when one of the Moms I do not know well said to me... "How is... Ringo? Is that his name? How IS he?"

Word had spread that my family was one of the first families to contract the flu. There have been many many questions regarding it due to the fact that the media has made it sound like we were all going to die. As I keep telling people, "So many people in Palm Beach County have it, if it was as bad as they portrayed it, we would have people in the streets shouting, "Bring out your dead..." every morning."

But people WANT to know. How bad is this flu? At least that was what I thought she was getting at. And so I gave her a squenched up face and said, "Non-event. He's had worse colds. Bones had it and I just took Mr. T home with it today."

Still she persisted with a quizzical look, "But Ringo... he is OK?"

Again I shrugged her off, 'Yup...'

She continued, "But... I heard... Charley told me that he is in a coma! I told my husband, 'Those POOR parents! Their SON is in a COMA!""

And with that, the light went off to Bones and his Thursday night declaration that he had told his buddies at school, including Charley, that his older brother was in a mini coma, and according to this mother, 'quarantined'.

This would be quarantined off his father's couch and taking in only vegetables, although her son didn't tell her the part about vegetables... he probably quit listening when he heard 'My brother... coma".

Nice.

Posted by Boudicca at 06:03 PM | Comments (14)