Welcome to my world!

My life's been crazy since my Daddy moved in with me immediately after my mother's death in October 2010. My one and only kiddo headed to college at Carolina at the end of August. So...I lived on my own, for the first time in my life, for a total of a blissful six weeks. Then, I started the parenting gig with my dad. He's a combination of a grouchy old man, a surly teenager and a temperamental toddler. Needless to say, I get very close to the brink of insanity sometimes. I get through life by finding the humor in difficult circumstances. And for some reason, I wind up in the weirdest situations. I couldn't make this stuff up. So I wind up having lots and lots crazy adventures which make great stories to share with my friends. Writing about my life is so therapeutic. My ramblings range from funny to sad to angry (full of cuss words) to sweet. While my focus is dealing with the trials and tribulations of being a parent to my Daddy, I have lots of random, totally unrelated posts. Whatever's on my mind. I love to make people laugh, and I'm happy to think my readers will get my strange sense of humor. And maybe, people who are in my situation will be encouraged. That's all I can hope for...

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Worn Out

That's me. But in a good way. I ran a mile this morning - first time in a while. Then walked over to the park with my niece. We hit the swingset and the monkey bars. So much fun.

A trip to the old house to load up the minivan - I forgot a few things, like the food in the fridge and freezer.

Then I headed over to visit fantasy parents-in-law. Went to gro with Mama Ruth. Grilled her about FF. Looked at family pics with Papa J. Listened to stories. Tried to set them up to Skype their favorite son, but realized they didn't have a webcam. FF authorized the purchase tonight, so I'll pick one up. I love to spend other people's money. It's nice that my clients pay me to do that. Can't wait to get them set up. The D loved it when we Skyped with Kiddo.

When I got home, Sarita was here, unpacking and putting away kitchen things. Deb was here, too. First thing she said to me was, "I see you've got this house all crapped up, too." Then, "Do you want that other refrigerator or not?" I asked her if she'd given The D his bible. He left it in her car last week when she took him to church. He's asked me about it a dozen times. He walked into the kitchen and I proudly showed him the two boxes of muffins I'd bought BEFORE he ran out. He has one every morning for breakfast. He angrily replied, "I don't want none of them muffins." Whoa. I realized that he meant he didn't want them right then. He was still full from lunch, I suppose. He loved the BBQ place where his sweet grandaughters took him. Wonder if he'd have loved it as much if I'd chosen it. Oh, well.

Deb left and Sarita and I walked down to Angela's. She was getting ready for one of her regular shindigs. I snuck some olives and pickled okra from the relish tray. Sarita fussed at me, but I knew Angela didn't care. She always has plenty. We said hi to MiMi (Angela's version of The D - her mom lives with her, too). I hugged my sweet niece. My gosh - she's getting so grown up. 14 years old. Wow. What happened to that little five pound baby Angela brought home from the hospital?

Michael (Angela's husband) was mixing up some sort of fruity, no doubt extremely strong, pitcher of adult beverages. I don't go near them. The last time I did was when Sex and the City came out. He made Mojitos for us. The last thing I remember that night was telling him to make some more, and he said, "Another pitcher???" That was the worst hangover of my life. No mo mojitos. Or anything harder than beer, for that matter.

So Sarita and I headed to the park and hit the swingset and the monkey bars. So much fun. It's a pretty good day for me when I get to go to the playground twice. I love living here.

Sarita went home and I sat in the living room with Daddy and he did color commentary for the Reds/Marlins game while I looked at the paper. He showed me the TV guide where he'd marked the channels he wanted me to add to his favorites on the remote control. Niece got him started on that. Damn. One more thing to figure out. He told me he didn't want any dinner. I ate half the Cobb salad I'd gotten him at the grocery.

Skyped with FF for a little while, but we had technical difficulty. That reminds me. I was talking to him this morning when his mother called me. I told him I had to go - Mama comes first. She's so sweet. She is such a talker and has so many good stories. She tells me about FF, but prefaces everything with, "Don't tell him we said this." She said she didn't know what I did to him, but they'd never seen him this mellow before. I have to admit I blushed a little, but I'm sure she didn't realize how that might've come across. When I told FF about it later, he had a good laugh.

A good laugh. As bad as it's been at times lately, I've had more than my share of laughing and smiling. Due in no small part to dude. He has just the right balance of smart and goofy. Which is to say, he doesn't take himself seriously. And that's so much fun.

So, I'm totally exhausted, my muscles are sore, and there's still so much to do, but I have a big grin on my face and I'm quite sure I'll sleep well. And have lots of sweet dreams.

Settling In

As hard as this move has been, it's finally paying off. The House Boat is stll stacked to the ceiling with boxes and bags, but that's not bothering me. I told Sarita and Sheila if they'd do a carport sale with my excess stuff, we'd split the proceeds three ways. I'm terrible at carport sales. I get pissed off when people say they'll give me a nickel for something marked for a quarter. Which I paid $10 for. Or they want to buy something for 75 cents and try to pay with a hundred dollar bill. Right. If you add up all my time, I make about 37 cents per hour. My tax deduction is worth way more than that. I have a feeling S & S can pull it off. I just have to watch that they don't sell stuff I need.

When I started winding down last night, my niece called. I'd forgotten she was in town for the music festival and said she might spend the night. She'd gone to the old house and was shocked when someone else came to the door and said I didn't live there any more. Guess I forgot to mention that little detail. I gave her the simple directions for the nine tenths of a mile trek to the House Boat. She's worse than me. Called twice, lost. Even with the church sign that shines like a beacon, proclaiming "Life is fragile. Handle with prayer."

So I told her I'd stand in the driveway. I didn't know what her car looked like. There's not much traffic on my street outside school hours and since she was just two minutes away, I tried to flag down the first car that came along. In my pajamas and bare feet. Turned out, it wasn't her. I was so embarrassed. I can just imagine the next neighborhood association meeting. The beer and wine bottles in the recycle bin. All the rough looking men (who happen to be plumbers and cable men) coming and going at all hours of the day and night. Now that I think about it, I've had at least ten men here in the past few days. And that's not counting Sarita's man dropping her off and picking her up, and of course, FF. Maybe my tasteful ferns at the front door and my UNC flag will count for something. And the freshly mowed lawn. And the Daddler Patrol.

Back to sweet niece. The D had already gone to bed but since his big ass bedroom TV was still blaring, we went in to say hello. He was happy to see her. I'd forgotten to tell him she was coming.

Then we sat in my cozy den and drank beer and ate some Friday's potato skins I had in the freezer. She painted her nails and we talked about our BFs. I tried to call FF, but he didn't answer. I think he was out with friends. I'd hoped we could Skype so she could meet him. I also wanted him to hear my crystal clear voice on my cool new phone. I'm going to figure out how to Skype on it - I have a feeling it's a premium service. I think I'll use it lots, though. Especially with JoJo and her iPad. Just think, we can get each other's opinions on our clothes, shoes, hair and makeup any time.

Now to the point of my post. Here I sit, finally relaxed and content. Sweet niece is sleeping soundly in Kiddo's bed. He'll be home at the end of next week. Can't wait. Gotta get his room in good shape. I put the big ass TV from my den into his bedroom to surprise him.

My other niece and her family are coming over to see Good House and we're gonna take The D to Central BBQ for lunch.

I thinking of all the wonderful memories I've already made in my new home. Spending time with FF here. Listening to him play my new guitar and sing to me, giving me lessons, and long, long convo's about everything. Jumping on the bed together. And a few other things I won't mention. Then last night, the little visit at the kitchen table with two girlfriends. My niece's visit.

So the sadness I felt about leaving my old house behind has been replaced with excitement about all the new things in store for me at my new house. So maybe I'll quit calling it House Boat and go back to the original name The D gave it. Good House.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Mixed Messages

Do I send them? I told you the whole Kevin/David/Fred saga yesterday. I think maybe Fred likes me.

See, since I have my sights set on FF, I don't notice other men. I'm pretty obtuse in that area anyway. When I'm not interested, at least. So when I offer a plumber a blow job if he can fix my leak, I figure he knows I'm kidding. I AM kidding. I'd never do that. A hand job, maybe. Eeewww. What is wrong with me?!

Sex is not currency. Not even for health insurance.

Damn. This blog is all wrong. Back to Fred.

My phone rang today and I didn't recognize the number. Since I was with the Sprint man, I ignored it. Love the one you're with - that's my philosophy. He was downloading my data and slapped my had when I went for the USB port to answer. I swear - how in the hell did I take 578 pictures?

I left there $250 poorer with some kind of Iron Man 3 machine of a phone. It's worth it though. Sarita said I sound crystal clear. Now maybe FF won't accuse me of mumbling. And hopefully I won't have to press my head against the glass in the bay window to have a convo.

Oh, back to Fred. I had a voice mail from him. Just checking on me. Making sure I wasn't having any more problems. Oh, my. Is it normal for plumbers to make follow up calls? The lady from Comcast does.

I'm kinda glad I missed Fred's call. And that he didn't ask me to call back. And that I made it through the week, it's Friday night, no client meetings this weekend, I have a mostly mowed lawn and clean wet hair and cotton pajamas. A Daddy who heated up his own pizza and a cat who hasn't thrown up in two days. A bed I can get into. And a room of my own.

Benign Neglect

Is that a real thing? I mowed the lawn today. A big job. I had a nice visit with a coupla GFs in between. Forgot about The D. His dinner. After the girls left, I mowed some more. I hate to admit this, but I found it necessary to spit. That's such a male thing. But I really did get dirt in my mouth. I wasn't marking my territory.

Came in and headed to the Enchanted Airie. Took a hot shower. Put on great cotton pajamas. Padded downstairs. The D jumped when I walked into the kitchen. He startles easily. He asked me about dinner. I asked him what he wanted. He was crouched around the microwave. He said he'd handle it himself. He surreptitiously removed a slice of pizza and retreated to his living room. I laughed.

We're adjusting.

It's Better...

...at long last. I feel calm for a change. Ready to take on a few more challenges. I've already made my daily Comcast call to program The D's remote. I think he starts pushing buttons and messes it up. This time I wrote down the code, so maybe today will be the last call. Called the newspaper and they switched the address and even said they'd bring one by House Boat this morning.

Actually, the Boat's finally ashore.

I just watched part of the Royal Wedding. It reminds me of Chuck and Di's. Long time ago. I remember getting up at the crack o'dawn for that. I'm gonna get ready and head to my good friend, Linda's, for a Royal Breakfast. We're supposed to wear a tiara or something regal, but I'm at a loss. Kate's "something borrowed" was my tiara, so I'll just have to go unadorned. Too bad about the move - she gave my invitation to some commoner since I couldn't go.

Ok, I'm really not delusional. The nice thing was that this is the first time in a long time that a wedding didn't make me sad. This is not a hint, in case you're reading, Mr. Man. Well, maybe just a little one.

Better run. Later...

Denouement: 5 pm to Midnight

Wow. I actually made progress. Some of my battles came to fruition. My struggles paid off. Hard to believe how things fell into place before the end of the day. Here goes...

After umpteenth phone call to home warranty people and their contract repair dummies, I finally got Fred. After Kevin the Clueless Blob last night, I got David, the nice guy who knew he was in over his head today and called for backup. Fred to the rescue.

David said he couldn't hook up my washer for me (the movers didn't do it - I think I told them to leave before they got to that). So when Fred came, I said I knew it wasn't covered under the home warranty but if he would just watch me do it and tell me if I was doing something wrong, I'd really appreciate it. He relented. So I got behind the washer and tried to shove it out from the wall. Heavy. He helped. Then I squeezed behind the washer. Started juggling hoses and electrical cords. Finally he told me to move out of the way. Hot Damn! He even helped me move a huge cabinet the frat boys had left in the laundry room. I tried to talk him into doing a couple loads of laundry, but he refused.

I showed him the attic leak. He quickly identified the problem. Something to do with glue, or the lack of glue. Then we tackled the biggie. The water leak from somewhere which was running down behind the wall from the roof and causing major wet, stinky carpet in the downstairs bathroom. I told him he'd have to cut the wall open. He agreed. He couldn't find a leak. I told him it was the vent pipe. He disagreed.

I told him to just forget it. It couldn't be solved. He said he wasn't leaving until he figured it out. I puttered around while he puzzled over it. Fixed The D leftover pizza. He didn't bitch about it. Acted like he enjoyed it, in fact.

Then Fred appeared. He told me to go upstairs and run water in the sink in the upstairs bathroom. To leave it going until he told me to turn it off. So I did. Decided to pee while it was running. Like always, everything happens while you're on the toilet or in the shower. He came running up the stairs and I snatched my pants up at the last minute. He told me to turn off the water. The mystery was solved.

There was a clog in between the upstairs sink and the downstairs sink and it caused the water to back up in the downstairs sink and run onto the floor. Hallelujah! No insidious mold growing in the walls. Just wet, stinky carpet. I'll just have to pull it up. I think I'll get tile instead.

Fred thought he'd have to call someone with the right equipment to fix it, but then remembered he might have something that would work. He did. Wow. I told him he was too smart for that stupid company. He agreed. It was true. I told him he should start his own biz. Hope he does.

Plumbing resolved. Just remembered. He forgot to collect the $60 deductible. They can take it outta my hide.

Back to Comcast. The cable box in The D's living room stopped working. I'd spent an hour on the phone with Alex in Mexico in the morning getting it to work. Back on the horn with Comcrap. Miracle of miracles - I got a lady with a brain. The problem was that I'd taken the boxes from the old house and when the renter called to switch service to her name, it disabled my boxes. I was told earlier that I'd have to take them in to the cable office (think three hours, minimum) and get them to switch them over to the new address. I begged Sarah, the sweet Comcast lady, to see if she could do it on the phone. I told her I believed in her. I told her how I was ready to kill Daddy and he would make my life a living hell if I didn't have his tv's working and that I'd promised my kiddo I'd record the Royal Wedding in the morning (I don't know what's up with that), and that I'd leave to go to the cable office right then but I was stuck waiting for the plumber. Then I mentioned my close relationship with the man at the helm of Comcast (could I get in trouble for lying and saying that I slept with their prez in college?) and that I was a VIP and Judy (from the install debacle) could vouch for me.

Oh, I also got a mysterious blog comment from someone who says he's with Comcast and that he's sorry for my trouble. Gotta email him and ask for a lifetime supply of PPV. Not that I ever sit still long enough to watch anything for more than 45 seconds at a time. It's pretty much Squawk Box and HGTV for me these days.

Sarah and Judy got me fixed up and helped me program the remotes so they'd work both the channel AND the sound. When it finally all worked, I told them I loved them for the umpteenth time and that I'd mention them to Brian (the prez) at our next illicit rendezvous.

I drug The D from his bedroom to his living room and handed him the remote. He looked skeptical and said the volume didn't work, but it did. Now there.

Oh, that reminds me. Sarita said he seemed sorry for hollering at me about the litter box yesterday. Couldn't believe that. He did seem somewhat penitent. He went outside quite a few times during the day and puttered around the yard. Came in and told me he'd done some work. There was a nice little stack of limbs by the mailbox.

Bulimic cat seems happy at last. She loves running up the stairs.

I finished off my day with something new. Bathtub Skyping. I was so tired that I decided to kill two birds with one stone, so I ran my bathwater first (without fear of leaks) and perched the computer on a little stool next to the tub and dialed up FF. I didn't fall for it when he told me to point the camera down a little because he could only see the top of my head. Does he think I'm stupid or something?

Oh, well. I think I'll get back to sleep now. What a difference a day makes...

Thursday, April 28, 2011

8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. - Another Day, Another Disaster

I got a call from Sarita. She sounded sick. Her power's been out all night. Something was wrong. She said she was keeping her kids home from school. They have perfect attendance records. I asked her what was wrong. She wouldn't say. I asked her if the kids were ok. She said yes. I asked her if it was her man. I could tell that was it. She said yes, but she couldn't talk. I asked her if he'd hit her. She said no. I asked her if he was listening and she said yes. I told her to get away from him.

I won't go into all the details except to say there was some verbal and emotional abuse, and I was on the verge of calling the police. I told her to get those kids to school and come to work because I needed her. And to put me on the phone with dude. She wouldn't do that, but agreed to take kids to school and come to work. I hung up and called my friend in high places in law enforcement and got some advice. Which was basically to stay out of it. That all I should do was encourage her. Which I did.

I had two client meetings and made a deposit at Schwab. Kept nodding off in the webinar at client #2. Got The D a Chick-Fil-A. No milkshake this time. Just cole slaw and carrot-raisin salad. It's been three days since his last poop. Thank god, when I asked him about that later, he said he pooped today. And somehow he found the Miralax. Don't know how.

When I got home, Sarita asked me what was wrong. Wow. She's in Shit City and was worried about me. She started fixing The D's plate and I told her to come up to the Airie when she was done with that. I was already in a fetal position on my bed and I told her to lie down with me. We were both so exhausted that we fell asleep like a couple of kittens, snuggled up together. No small comfort.

The next thing we knew, it was almost two. Time for that prick to pick her up. When he got there, I made a point of walking to his car, chatting him up, telling him how wonderful she was, and saying I'd kill him if he laid a hand on her. Well, I left that last part off, but I sent the message loud and clear that I had her back.

Now, I'm still fucking with Comcast (programming remotes and switching equipment from old account to new account), plus dealing with second plumber who called third plumber who has some gizmo to detect leaks through the wall. I sweet talked plumber #2 into hooking up my washer. He didn't want to do it, but I just told him to watch me and tell me if I was doing it wrong. He got frustrated and told me to move and he did it. I asked him if it was ready to use, and he said plumber #3 would have to tighten it up.

Bright spot. I got a comment on this very blog from some dude who says he's from Comcast. An apology of sorts. My friend Lundy said some big companies monitor blogs and tweets for bad PR. Wonder if I can get some blood money. We'll see. Not counting on it.

Oh, one last thing. The weather is beautiful. High was 72. Sunny. The D seems penitent. Bulimic cat finally seems happy. Birds are chirping. Great day for moving...

5 a.m. to 7 a.m. - Fuckin' Muffins and Bittersweet Memories

I took a shower, put on makeup, got dressed, and breathed. I can't remember the last time I went 2 days without taking a shower. Wow, it felt good to be clean.

I headed to old house to get his fuckin' muffins. And milk and juice. I grabbed a bunch of stuff out of the fridge, but not everything. I'll send Sarita to do that. I cleaned out a few things remaining in the closets. I did a walk-through, and all of a sudden it hit me. Memories came flooding back. Bringing Kiddo home from the hospital. Painting clouds on the ceiling in his nursery. Later on, decorating his room in a baseball theme. The early years of my marriage when I was mostly happy.

Then I remembered the bad times. The long, slow, painful disintegration of my marriage. The day he moved out and the gaping hole where his recliner had been. Kinda like the gaping hole in my heart. My divorce was the hardest thing I ever did, but the best thing. We're both so much happier now.

More bad memories included the terrible teenage years when Kiddo pretty much hated me. At least he acted like it. That's more painful to me than the divorce. But now he's happy at college. Thriving.

I remembered the last night Mother and Daddy ever slept in the same bed and had a meal together. At my house. She went into the hospital the next day and never came home. Then there was all the trauma surrounding her death. Planning her funeral and then missing it, because Daddy was too sick to go. Going to the ER the night of the visitation and getting choked by my psychotic sister and threatened by my enraged uncle while I was there.

There were so many doctors' visits after that. I remember Daddy stomping his foot on the floor to call me, and seeing him cry out in pain. I'd take his blood pressure over and over until it went from being sky high to normal. I was afraid he'd die, and I just couldn't bear the thought of that.

The dark, cold winter months. Struggling through the holidays. Missing Mother so much.

Spring truly is a time of renewal. As awful as this move has been, it feels good to start fresh. Exorcise those demons. Purge the detritus of the second third of my life.

I cried in my empty house. I'm crying now. I'm going to let myself wallow in the sadness today, but I'll comfort myself with what I know in my heart of hearts. The best is yet to come.

3:00 to 4:19 a.m.

Since I went to bed at 7:30 last night, I woke up at 3:00 am. Actually, I woke up at 11:00 pm but thought the clock was wrong and managed to go back to sleep. So I've had lots of sleep.

It looks like the House Boat has been through an earthquake, a flood and has been ransacked by burglers.

I went downstairs and played twister to get through the den. Wended my way to the kitchen and grabbed a Coke Zero. Then made a bee-line to The Daddler's living room. Recliner, check. Big-ass tv, check. Room to walk, check. Cable working, nope. Grabbed every remote in the house and started pushing buttons. Didn't work. Gave up and called Comcast and got Alex in Mexico - major trouble understanding him. I won't go into the details. I'll just say in the course of instructing Alex and extracting the right code from him. I asked him no fewer than 15 times for a different code - one with five digits, not three. Finally he coughed it up. It worked. Victory at last.

Blog break. Back to it. Stay tuned for more...

DHS (Department of Human Services)

...Do they take old people? Would I get charged with Willful Neglect or Elder Abuse or Capital Murder if I snapped and then snapped his neck? I have a feeling he'd snap mine instead. Then he could go live with bitch from hell. She'd pitch him into a nursing home. I think he knows that. So I doubt he'll call DHS or the Po Po. Or snap my neck.

Actually, it could be worse. We could've lost power. Or been hit by a meteor. So I won't complain about House Boat. Or the lake I'm in.

I'm utterly exhausted. As soon as frat boys get back with whatever the hell is left at old house, I'm going to empty my pockets of cash for them and head to bed. The fuckin' home warranty contract MF plumbers didn't show up. It appears my bathroom wall will have to be sawed into. Major job. 500 lb. plumber apprentice came earlier and I knew more than he did. I had to convince him that this was a complicated job. And not to feel bad - my plumber didn't know what was wrong. He waddled out and said they'd be back between 12 and 4. It's 6 now. No plumber. I'm not surprised.

I am surprised, however, that I'm calm. IDGAF.

Trying to decide whether to attend client webinar tomorrow. I probably should. I can make a little money (haven't done that all week) and preserve my sanity by getting the hell away from The Daddler.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Stick a Fork in Me... I'm Done.

Crazy day. No time to elaborate, but suffice it to say I have three months of blog fodder.

Outrageously expensive movers. So much for the friends and family discount. Maybe I'm paying a premium since the owner of the biz is the EX-husband of my good friend, and now that I think about it, he blamed their divorce on me. Said I told his malleable wife to leave him. Never mind the fact that she's one tough cookie.

Yesterday, my renter brought a nice college boy to old house to show him where she wanted him to put stuff for their move today. Sarita and Sheila had worked like maniacs and were getting ready to fly the coop, so I asked the kid if he could help ME pack and move. At least half of 21 years of accumulated shit was still at old house and the clock was ticking. He had some frat bro's who would help for beer and pizza. Oh, and $8/hour. Still, helluva lot cheaper than moving service. So now they've had plenty to eat and drink - they're on their way to get the last of the closet contents at old house.

The D is a shit. Bulimic cat is in hiding. Crouching around in defensive posture. So far, only one pile of vomit.

When everyone leaves, I'm gonna head to my EA (Enchanted Airie), take a hot bath, and try to clear a place on my bed. Never mind. I'll head down to the sofa...


Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Muddin' in My Mama's Minivan

That was the best of several titles I contemplated for this post. It beat out: I'm Fuckin' Floating Away; I Own a Swamp; Tilting at Windmills, Part MCMVI; or plain old Cluster Fuck. The last one's more fitting, but I tend to overuse it.

After way too many consecutive days of storms, we had another biggie tonight. I am so sick and fuckin' tired of picking up the ferns on my front steps. Every time, I say, "I've got to buy some fuckin' pots for these fuckin' ferns", but so far it hasn't happened. Damn, I'm glad FF doesn't mind a few F words sprinkled here and there. Actually, he makes my language look pretty pristine. Gotta love that.

After a really hard day of packing and moving stuff to House Formerly Known as Good House, the torrential downpour started. Tornado sirens went off. It's like the buzzer on the dryer when it's finished - I don't even hear it any more. Even though it's practically next door and makes my windows rattle. I made Sarita stay until it let up. Finally, after the 15th call from her kids, I told her she could go.

Her car was in the shop so I told her to take one from our fleet. Kiddo's 14 year old gramma car. I needed to go back to the old house to get cat food, so we walked out together. I was planning to take my ten year old Subaru, but it was next to the gramma car and they were both in rushing water up to the rims. We ran back under the carport and I said I'd go in Mother's minivan and that I'd drive next to her car so she could get in without wading through the water. As I started to pull in, I realized that the driveway wasn't wide enough so I'd have to go in the grass. And that my yard was a lake. I was afraid I'd get stuck in the mud. At that point, I didn't care about the yard getting all mucked up (although I'm sure The Daddler will have plenty to say about it). After about 15 times of going forward and backward with Sarita leaning out the side door shouting directions about which way to cut the wheel (which always confuses me since I'm dyslexic), I finally got close enough for her to jump from the van into the passenger's side of the gramma car. It only took four more times to get the doors lined up. I felt like one of those rescue helicopter pilots who saves people from the rushing water. I was shouting, "You can do it!", "Don't be afraid!", "You'll be all right!". You get the idea. I had my head stuck out my window so I was getting soaked, and in between each inspirational platitude I muttered one or two four letter words, and one choice four syllable compound word. Not at her, just at the sitch.

Finally, she safely made the tranfer. Never mind that we were both wet from head to toe instead of just up to our ankles. I started screaming at her to roll down her window. I shouted that the fuel gauge didn't work. Keep in mind that the tornado sirens were going off and the rain and wind were loud so it was hard to hear. Plus, she and The D had put some stupid-ass country a.m. radio station on in the van and I couldn't figure out how to turn it off. I told her if the trip odometer was under 200, she wouldn't run out of gas. I love the girl to death, but she didn't know what the trip odometer was. She started reading off some string of numbers. I told her it should be three numbers. She didn't see it. Then I realized it's probably four numbers because it shows tenths of a mile, too. She was hollering numbers and I was hollering "What?" This went on for about five minutes until she said 1132. That sounded right. I asked her if there was a period after the three. There was. So I shouted the number back, just to be sure. I gave her the ok sign and rolled up my window.

I noticed her waving at me and rolled it back down. She asked me what I called that, and I told her it was the trip odometer. Bless her heart. So I start to try to back out of the mud pit, and I see her waving again. Down goes the window. She said she is going to have to back out first - the minivan is too close. Ok. So she tries to back out, but it's too close for that. So she tells me to try and she pulls up as far as she can. Thank god she didn't go over the edge into Daddy's newly tilled vegetable garden.

After narrowly missing the corner of the house while avoiding the side of the gramma car, I finally made it to the driveway. I was backing out and couldn't see shit - there was a big box in the passenger's seat and the windows were fogged up and it was raining hard and I couldn't figure out how to turn on the windshield wipers. So I couldn't tell where the driveway ended and the mudpit formerly known as a yard began. At that point, I didn't care. I got the radio off and the wipers on before I got to the end of the driveway. Now, it turns out that the storm drain is clogged with leaves from my five humongous oak trees. The other day, my recycle bin floated out into the street. Luckily, neither of us got swept away in the flood. Even though we didn't follow Dave Brown's sage advice: Don't Drown, Turn Around.

Soooo, I headed to the old house. The D was waiting for me at the back door. I told him I needed to get food for the bulimic cat. I asked him if he had a flashlight. He proceeded to demonstrate that he did by shining it in my eyes. I told him to call me if he needed me, but I realized he didn't have a phone there. I said since he didn't have a phone, he could go to our neighbors house if he needed anything. He said, and this is a quote, "Yea. I already figured that out." No aphasia this time. Clear as a bell. Complete with sarcasm. Wait until he sees the mud.

Next, I realized that I only had the minivan key and not my car keys with the key to the House Boat. So I told The D I needed his key. He started taking it off his key ring and I felt the house key in my pocket. I told him never mind. Then I bade him farewell and he locked the door behind me. I got in the minivan and realized I didn't have my purse. So had to go back, ring the doorbell, and get it.

Back at the Boat, the poor, frightened cat was still under the sofa three hours after having arrived. I started thinking about it and realized that the only two places she'd ever been in her whole life were the old house and the vet. So I could see why she'd be a little leary of a new place. I got on the floor to coax her out, and then I thought I should get a picture of her for the blog. It took me twelve times to get a picture that even resembled a cat under a sofa. Then I realized that the flashing light probably wasn't very soothing for her. All for naught, though, because my Stupid Sprint smart phone doesn't work in this Boat, so I can't email the pic to my computer.

Oh, my. I left out the whole part about the leaking PVC pipe in the attic and the mysterious wet puddle on the downstairs bathroom carpet. Or my seven phone calls to the stupid home repair warranty douches and their shitty contractors. For now my back is hurting and I'm tired and hungry and wet, so I'll have to tell about that another time.

For now, though, I can laugh about all this. I'm so tired, that I think I'll sleep through the 13th stormy night in a row and wake up hoping the scene outside my Enchanted Airie doesn't resemble Iguacu Falls...


No time for more - just taking a teensy break from packing and moving. Up since 5 and tired, but major adrenaline/cortisol (stress hormone) rush so still going strong. Thank god for Sarita. She's amazing. She's lost 5 pounds this week from working so hard. Damn, she's good.

I've lost at least 5 pounds, too. From working hard, and falling hard for FF. He left this morning and I haven't had time to mope about it. A good thing, because my steeze is gonna be affected, if I keep it up like a lovesick crackhead.

I keep saying I'm not gonna blog about him, but I just can't help myself. He's pretty amazing. More later...

Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Taming of the Shrew...

...or Romeo and Juliet? That is the question.

I swore I wouldn't blog about Fantasy Fiance's visit, but it's just too damn irresistable. Ok. Where do I begin? I guess with his arrival Thursday. I told him to call me when he landed and I'd pick him up at the airport 15 minutes later. I thought that would be around eleven, but it was closer to ten. Thank god I'd already figured out what to wear. I can get totally derailed with what I like to call Closet Door Conundrum. Paralyzed even. I swear, every time I had to take my mother to the hospital without warning, I felt like the Children of Israel must've when they had to decide exactly which crap to take when they had to flee Egypt with very little notice.

Never mind that I live three minutes from the hospital. I was always afraid I wouldn't be able to leave there for days. And since I need constant stimulation when I'm not in a state of torpor, I had to take every single magazine, book and newspaper in sight (quite a few, for me). And legal pads so I could make endless to-do lists (I need to write a separate post about my compulsive list-making). And nail polish, facial scrub, a bar of my fav soap (Zest Aqua Pure), all my makeup and every single hair care product and device I own. Strangely, I always had the crazy idea of converting the hospital room into some sort of spa retreat. And that was before I figured out what clothes to take. I had to cover every season because hospital room weather is never temperate. It's either freezing or burning up. And if you're not the sick one, it's kinda selfish to adjust the thermostat to suit yourself. On top of that, it's important to think about how you want to look in every possible situation. Something kinda businessy when dealing with asshole, condescending specialists or bitchy nurses. A cute little outfit in case there's a handsome doc around who's not arrogant and condescending. That's never happened, but it's not worth risking a trip to the crapeteria on the outside chance that Dr. Right happens to get in line behind you. Speaking of behind, if I'm feeling booty-confident (a rare thing), there's one pair of my dozen or so black yoga pants that I'm comfortable wearing in public. Not that I can ever find that particular pair. And after two days of crapeteria food, don't even think about yoga pants. By then, you'd better pull out the fat jeans. I swear, why do they have all that disgusting, cholesteral/grease-laden shit in a hospital? I suppose it makes good business sense from a marketing point of view.

Wow, I've gotten way off track. Maybe I'm avoiding any real discussion of FF. So here goes.

When he called to say he was here, I threw on an outfit I hoped would suggest "smart, sophisticated, subtly-sexy CFO." I even wore panty hose. Dude has NO idea what a big deal that was. His dad did, however, comment on my legs, but that's neither here nor there. When I drove up, I jumped out of the car so he'd get the full effect of my carefully planned outfit. I guess it worked, because he said something about how I looked. I can't remember what, exactly, but I'm sure it was something nice. I went in for a handshake (in line with the business theme), but he hugged me instead. And then we stood there and stared at each other and smiled. Then I put my hand on his cheek and laid a big wet kiss on him. Right on the mouth. Said we might as well get that out of the way. I think it was well-received. He laughed and didn't recoil in horror, at least.

It kinda backfired on me though. I thought I'd be less nervous after that, but the opposite happened. When we finally got in the car, I started checking my phone for texts and emails and babbling incessantly. When the crossing guard started blowing his whistle and waving for us to move on, I managed to start the trek to his parents' house. I only had one near miss and one U-turn, but neither seemed to frighten him. A very good sign.

I suggested we stop by Fresh Market so he could get some flowers to take to his mom. And I needed some mushrooms for my never-fail goat cheese and olive tapenade baked mushrooms. By the way, Fresh Market has great prices on fresh flowers. $10 for a dozen roses pretty much all the time. They're loss leaders for all their outrageously priced food, I guess. It works for me. While we were standing in the checkout line, he put his arm around me and I think he patted or rubbed my back. I can't remember which. It's been a long time since I've experienced a public display of affection. It was nice.

We walked to the car and he asked me when I had to get to my client's office. I did have a meeting, so my outfit wasn't completely contrived. Never mind that I usually wear jeans there. We had an hour or so to spare. He said he wanted to see Good House. It's only a mile or two from his parents' house, which is incredibly convenient. He made a bee-line for my newly acquired guitar and sat and played and sang for a while. Dust in the Wind - which is really beautiful, but I hadn't realized that the lyrics were so sad until I heard him sing them. When he finished, I said I thought they were in keeping with my current Carpe Diem philosophy.

I showed him around the rest of the downstairs and then he mentioned my Enchanted Airie upstairs. Up we went and I came out with my most abused attempt at humor by saying "This is where the magic happens." Dumb, I know. But I was anxious. In another attempt to conquer my nerves, I took off my shoes and jumped on my great big new king-sized bed. It was my parents' and it's so great. Sturdy enough to jump on. I remember when we were kids, we'd jump on the bed and the slats would come out and the mattress would fall to the floor. Damn, we got in trouble for that all the time. But it was worth the risk.

See, jumping on the bed is a test I like to use. The world is divided into two kinds of people. Those who jump on beds (or are willing to, if asked) and those who won't. The latter group has a disproportionate share of picky eaters, and that's a huge peeve of mine. I'm sure you can connect the dots there. I told FF to come jump on the bed with me, and at first he refused. It didn't take too much wheedling to get him to join in. We jumped a little bit and I plopped down on my butt and he followed suit. Passed my test. The bigger test is jumping on someone else's bed. It's pretty easy to read their reaction. They're either amused or horrified. No in-between. And since I'm so sick of acting like a grownup all the time (well, some of the time), if it bothers someone for me to jump on their bed I figure it means one of two things. Either they're worried about their stuff getting broken or they think I'm stupid/weird/strange. Neither bodes well for a long-term relationship of any kind. The one thing I'll never forget from my trip to vist my girl Melanie (the dentist in Baltimore) is jumping on the bed with her. Her husband had gone up to bed to read while we gabbed and giggled like a couple of middle-school girls downstairs. When I said we should go jump on the bed, I didn't have to persuade her. She jumped up and we ran down the hall and stormed the bedroom and jumped all around, much to Roger's amusement. He told us he could take on both of us. Needless to say, he wasn't horrified by our antics. See, I always call Mel the Jewish Carol. We're scarily alike. In a good way. I'm starting to wonder if FF and Roger are scarily alike. In both good and bad ways. Mostly good, though. Hmmm... I'll have to think about that one. I'm overdue for a Melanie-call, anyway.

All this to say that jumping on the bed is good clean fun. It can be a little dangerous - you have to watch for ceiling fans and avoid beds with posts that could impale. And I did jam my finger in Baltimore. When I went to the orthopaedist, (for an unrelated ankle injury involving steps at the beach and a beer cooler a few months earlier) I showed him my purple finger and he asked me how it happened. He had a medical student or intern or someone with him. Which made it even funnier when I told him. Of course, there's nothing to be done about a jammed finger, but it was fun to see their reactions. And he probably got more from the insurance company since there were multiple injuries. He's a friend, so that's a good thing.

Wow, I've spent WAY too long on the bed-jumping thing. And I'm not even close to telling about the shrew reference. Not that I intend to. After all, FF reads this silly blog. I'll try to sum it up for now. I've frequently described myself as being "not for the faint of heart." And FF seems pretty fearless so far. It's still early, though. For now, I'm going to sign off and get started with my day. First on the list is devising my next test for Mr. Man...

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Squeaky Wheels...

...get the grease.

Yesterday, I was on the brink of Comcast-induced insanity. I threatened a technician. Said I'd cut his jugular with my loppers (in a joking way, of course) if he didn't get my service connected. Called the prez, Brian Roberts, @ HQ in PA. He's the only reason I had someone to threaten. Not just Carl (the sweet guy who actually DID something, and did it right), but his boss, Brad and a backup guy, Chad.

So here I sit. Amazed. I have HGTV-HD going in my den. I can Google. And when I pick up my phone, I get a dial tone. Good thing, because I have to figure out how to call in to the pacemaker people to check The D's rhythm. I just happened upon some kind of secret spy decoder device while I was packing for the move, and realized that I was supposed to do the pacemaker phone check thing. They've called three times. We were scheduled Thursday, but we didn't have phone service then, and cell phones won't work. Hopefully today.

In the meantime, I'm going to take a deep, cleansing breath. And think about getting my other computers and printers moved. I hope my wireless will work, but it's nice to know I can plug this computer into the wall if it doesn't.

It helps to have a backup plan. With everything...

Friday, April 22, 2011

First Dates...

...it's been a very long time since I've been on one. And since my Fantasy Fiance finally materialized yesterday, I figured I should brush up on the rules for first dates. Google to the rescue! I found just what I was looking for on Yahoo Answers:

Should you kiss on the first date?
well me and this girl i've been talking to for about a year went on a date to a sports banquet. the banquet was boring as hell, but we talked during the speechs and made a feew jokes. before we went we played some pool, andi gawee her a gift of like goodies and stuff that my mom got in L.A. there were a few dull moments, and i never got to do anything since i wasnt driving. and after that it was about 11:40 and i dropped her off at her friends house. i asked her if she wanted to go to the movies next week and she said sure, and she told me i better get my license next week too. should i just wait to the second date to kiss, or should i have kissed her last night.
Best Answer - Chosen by Asker
The longer u wait the more memorable the kiss will be my bf and I waited almost a month!

Since I never kiss and tell, you'll just have to wonder if I followed the rules. I will, however, say that I kinda like this guy. Just a little bit...

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


That's me. After being at Comcrap's total disposal from 8a to 8p today, I still don't have service at Good House.
I'm feeling dangerously like Michael Douglas' character in Falling Down when the McDonald's cashier tells him they've already stopped serving breakfast (10 minutes too early).

All I can say about it is that the first (toothless) idiot was afraid of the dog next door. And six hours later, the second (ornately tattooed) dummy went AWOL during the 15 minutes I left to check on The D.

There's much more to the story, but I need to get to sleep. Busy day tomorrow...

Pysanky - Polish Easter Eggs

My sweet surrogate parents, Ruth and Jerry, showed me their collection of beautifully decorated Easter eggs. So different from the plain old Paas versions I'm used to. Don't get me wrong, I love Paas. Dropping the tiny tablets of food coloring into the vinegar/water mixture. Using those cool, copper, octagonal dippers. Experimenting with multiple colors and going overboard. Too many colors make the eggs an icky grayish brown. And using the clear wax crayon to write messages or draw flowers or bunnies. In watercolor painting, you'd call this resist.
Turns out, beautifully intricate wax resist is an integral part of Polish Easter egg decorating.

I'm so excited that I'll get to try my hand at Pysanky this weekend. I love learning new things. And meeting new people. So let's just say I'm full of anticipation, mixed with a dash of anxiety. Awaiting the arrival of my latest admiree (and hopefully admirER) with alacrity and avidity. Hopefully we won't aggravate, annoy or afflict each other with agony or angst. I know, I know, this avalanche of alliteration is annoying.

Speaking of aggravation, I need to close now. Gotta be at Good House in 20 minutes to meet bug man and stay there until the Comcast guy arrives between 8 and noon.

Maybe I'll come up with some ideas for my first attempt at Pysanky while I wait. Something to rival these:

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


I took a major risk and increased my position in a small cap, green company. I made this decision this morning, in anticipation of a positive after-market earning release. Huge miss. Earnings, revenue, outlook - they all suck. It's down 7% after market. Oh, well.

I bought another stock - I think it's a great takeover target. And I sold another I think could be negatively affected by positive housing starts and building permit statistics released this morning. It pays a great dividend so even though I won't make a big gain on the sale, it'll be a nice return. Plus, it'll free up some cash for my next reckless bet.

Damn. I hope I can spend more time on this. In fact, I wish this was all I had to do. I love it.

But for now, I need to get The D's chicken pot pie out of the oven. Make a salad. Then head to the Good House to get it in decent shape for my out of town company this weekend.

Comcast is coming in the morning, so I might try to move my computers and printers so I can work there.

Golly, my head is spinning.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Stereotypes, Part I

Are they inherently wrong? I think about this quite a bit. What about positive stereotypes? Are they ok?

I spent lots of time trying to enlighten my parents, to no avail. When my mother talked about "Orientals", I explained that an Oriental was a rug, and that the correct term was "Asian." This to a woman with a Korean daughter-in-law. Oh, well.

In the last few days, some of my stereotypes have been challenged. Specifically, those for Asian people and young men with dreadlocks. That's another post, though. Not enough time now.

I'll just talk about a stereotype that was reinforced today. I pulled into the parking lot at the bank and there were only two open spots close by. They were next to a pickup truck with five or six men sitting in the bed or standing around. They were landscape workers, and looked a little rough. I considered parking farther away or on the other side of the building, but I am bound and determined to not be afraid or to buy into stereotypes, so I parked in the spot next to them. I got out of the car and as I walked past, I smiled and said hello. The guy in charge bounded over and said he wasn't going to bother me (ummm, shouldn't that go without saying?), but wanted me to have his business card. I thanked him and went on my way. As I walked away from them, I was wishing I'd worn my burka today instead of my jeans that are just a tad too snug. Maybe the sounds I heard behind me had to do with the great lunch they were planning after their bank trip.

Once I got into the safety of the bank, my prejudice kicked in. Were they just loitering and soliciting customers needing their services? Then I saw a man in the bank line who looked like he was with that crew. Was that a stereotype, too? Assuming he was with them?

I was hoping they'd be gone when I finished my banking, but they were still there. So I walked around the lobby (so much for not being fearful) and the third time I checked, they were gone. So I went on my way.

But I can't get that experience out of my mind. It makes me sad that they didn't return my respect. I wonder how many east Memphis women I know would have parked somewhere else, or not made eye contact. No matter what, I refuse to treat people like they're invisible. I know how painful it is to be ignored.

But still, no matter how enlightened I'd like to think I am, the unbidden anxiety betrays me.

Just maybe, though, it's ok to avoid groups of rough looking men in parking lots when I'm not in my burka. In fact, now that I think about it, if they'd been white instead of African American or Mexican, I'm quite sure I would've parked on the other side of the building. So maybe I'm trying too hard. Overcompensating.

Unfortunately, I've probably had more than my share of these situations. And every time, it makes me sad.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Sunday Morning Routine

Since I've become a lapsed Methodist (the once/month trip to the Baptist church with The D should count for something), I've developed my own little Sunday morning routine. If I feel like it, I fix french toast or pancakes for Daddy (he doesn't like my scrambled eggs). I made french toast yesterday so didn't offer this morning. Then I sit on the sofa in the living room and watch CBS Sunday morning with him. He's gotten me hooked on that show. I sift through the newspaper and pull out the parts I want to read. I get a pad and a pencil so I can jot down notes. All kinds of good info. Things I want to remember. Great sales, cool websites, coming events, books I want to read. You get the idea. Of course, I always lose the list.

Every other week, I start the morning by loading the pill boxes. The D has started telling me on Saturday night when they're empty. I ask him to put the pill boxes on the kitchen table so I'll remember. Luckily, I had picked up his prescriptions yesterday so I had enough to fill up both week's boxes. I've developed a system, which I think you'll find fascinating...

I get the plastic box of pill bottles. I empty them out and put the bag of refills in a separate pile. I get my excel spreadsheet which lists the pills and their dosages in columns labeled AM and PM. I pop open all 14 compartments and arrange them so the blue (PM) compartments are away from me and the red (AM) compartments are facing me. Important for my dyslexia. I start at the top of the list. His blood pressure medicine is a little blue pill which has to be cut in half. Luckily it's kind of long and thin so I can break it in two with my fingers. And its the only one I have to split. Except today, I was short one 20 mg Lipitor pill so I had to use the half a 40 mg sample pill. It's not scored but I was able to break it with my fingers. The pill cutter thing is a pain in the ass.

I go down the list of pills until I get to the end. I consolidate duplicate bottles along the way, being careful to put them in the newer one so I can see the last refill date. Oh, opening the refills that come prefilled by the manufacturer instead of the pharmacist is a pain in the ass, too. Those stupid foil tops. I hadn't gotten my pen and paper for my newspaper note-taking yet, so luckily I reached into the end table drawer and found one of those converters for three-pronged electrical cords to fit into two-pronged outlets. I used it to stab the foil. So glad I didn't have to take everything off my lap and get up to find a puncturing tool. It's impossibe to do with your fingers.

After the consolidation procedure, I put everything back in the plastic bin. I take a look at the pill boxes to see that they look right. I used to count every compartment's pills, but I've relaxed about that. I got up and gave The D his Sunday morning pills. I showed him that the PM compartments had two turquoise pills instead of one burgundy pill. I explained that I was trying to use up the half strength ones. He wanted to know what it was for - Shingles. He seemed satisfied.

I used to peel the labels off the empty pill bottles so there wouldn't be any info about his pills in the dump, but then I figured no one would try to break into our house for Lipitor or Namenda. Except I hear there are lots of seniors who have to spend their whole social security check on prescriptions - they might be desperate enough to try. But I'm taking my chances.

Big relief to have completed my dispensary job. So I could start the pleasant part of my routine.

When CBS Sunday morning ends, The D goes on his daily constitutional. Then I realize Face the Nation is on, so I get the remote and change it to HGTV and turn the volume way down. That reminds me. My life is SO much better since Daddy finally learned to work the remote. The real one. Not the stupid universal remotes I ordered and spent hours trying to program without success.

When he gets back, I give him the remote. Today, instead of finishing the paper, I decided I'd get outside and finish mowing. After an hour and a half, when my scalp started tingling (not sure why that happens), I finally finished. I got all the grass mowed, including mounds of leaves and gumballs. The perimeter of the yard is already in jungle mode and that overwhelms me. Thank god the renters like to do yardwork and will do that as part of the deal.

The D has started a little routine of walking around supervising me. Today I gave him a broom and asked him if he wanted to sweep the sidewalk, so I'd feel a little less like I was in a prison yard. Then I decided it would be better if he'd prune some of the million scrub trees that proliferate in the jungle. He agreed. I told him to just cut the thin, tall limbs instead of trying to get all the way to the bottom (bending and squatting can make you light-headed and I didn't want him to stroke out or pass out or hurt his back), but he said he was gonna get the whole thing. In an angry voice. Sure enough, I looked over a few minutes later, and he was bent down. So I went and got the little rolling seat he'd given me a long time ago. I told him to sit on it. He didn't answer. I repeated it. The third time, he barked at me - "I said I will!" He never did. When I looked over and didn't see him there, I started to go in the house and check on him, but decided instead to keep on working since my quick scan of the yard didn't reveal an unconcious daddler.

After an hour and a half, I was pretty exhausted and dirty, but mostly finished. I came in and checked on The D. He was fully conscious. Kicked back watching golf. I asked him what he wanted for lunch. He said nothing. I didn't try to twist his arm. I asked him if he'd been going to the bathroom (sometimes when he's having trouble with that, he stops eating), and he said he went a little bit yesterday.

Thank god the church volunteer at the Good House was there mowing the field yesterday afternoon and he agreed to mow my yard. He had a great big tractor mower. He only asked for $20 but I gave him $25. And invited him in for pizza (he declined). I love to mow the lawn, but right now, I just don't have time and I haven't moved the mower to the Good House yet.

When I mow, my mind seems to shift into some kind of hyper-creative mode. Maybe it's the vibration from the mower. Or the noise. Or boredom. Whatever it is, today I came up with about a million blog ideas.

So after the lunch/poop check, I headed to the den and plopped down at my computer and started a Word document and did a quick outline of all the random thoughts that were fresh in my mind from my mowing musings. It's three pages long. And that's mostly the ones related to gardening.

I have a fertile imagination. Hopefully, now that the tax deadline is almost past, I'll have more time for creative pursuits.

For now, I'm gonna hit the shower and then head to Good House to work on organizing my client and personal files. My friend, Sandi, is coming by around 5:00 for a tour. Haven't seen her in forever.

So as awful as yesterday was, today is every bit as good. I got a good night's sleep. The sun's shining and it's in the 70s. I have the pills loaded for the next two weeks and best of all, I finished mowing the lawn and got a little workout doing it. I hope your day's great, too.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Shitty Saturday

It's not even 8:30 and nothing is going right. My halogen desk lamp burned out. My ADD is raging and I can't find my medicine. Need to go to pharmacy for a refill today. The D's are due, too. That means another lovely pill dispensing session.

It's cold and overcast outside. It reflects my mood. And probably contributes to it.

But the biggest reason is that my heart feels like there's an anvil on it. I'm so, so sad over the family situation. Nothing I can do but be here for them. And keep my mouth shut when I think bad decisions are being made.

My kitchen is a mess. I cooked hamburgers for The D last night and there's grease splattered all over the stove, dirty dishes, spilled coffee, the usual. Sarita has me so spoiled. I keep telling her to ditch that man and those kids and move in with me. Something's gotta give.

WARNING: Skip the next two paragraphs if you'd rather not die of boredom.

I woke up at 4:00 in a panic over tax returns. I need to pay a shitload with my extension. I've put most of my income into turbo tax and some of my deductions. I hate to say the little box at the top of the screen has a number which is pushing 5 digits. No decimals. And it's red. The good news is that I don't have my biz expenses entered. I'm going to deduct expenses related to my home office this year. First step is to measure the square footage of my den/office and calculation the proportion to the whole house. It would help if I could find a tape measure. Then I can expense the pro-rata portion of interest, utilities, property taxes and insurance. I need to figure out depreciation, too. I also need to go through all my Office Depot receipts. Amazon, too - for software, biz magazines, etc. Find my AICPA dues and TN license renewals. Hopefully, I have all this in one of the dozen folders with assorted labels, like C - 2010 Biz, C - Biz Exp, C - Tax Info, and on and on. I'm so inconsistent. In everything. So unaccountantly. But I always remember one of my favorite quotes: Consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds. Emerson. And of course there's my ADD. And my right brain dominance. Or just my stupidity.

After figuring out that there's no way I can calculate all these expenses by Monday, I did a cash flow projection to figure out how much I can send. I'll just pay as much as I can. If I'm not missing something big, I should be able to cover it with enough to be applied to first quarter estimate.

Ok, I'm sure you all love to hear this accounting crap.

I think I'll just say "Fuck the Shit" and head out the door. Lowe's. Walgreens. Ross. Sherwin Williams - my paint's been there a week.

My heart is pounding, so I'm going to close and try to do some deep breathing since it's a tad too early to drink a beer. More later, I'm sure...

Friday, April 15, 2011

Time for bed...

...thank god I've made it through the day. It's a good thing I got an early start. I think it was 4:30 this morning.

I had a low key evening at the new house. A good friend came over and brought mexican food and mint chocolate chip ice cream - my weakness. That reminds me. I spent way too long on a stupid Ben & Jerry's email survey today. It said 5 - 10 minutes and I shudder to think how long I spent. I can only hope I don't win a year's supply of ice cream. I'd be like those poor schmo's who win the lottery and go bankrupt a few months later. Except I'd wind up on The Biggest Loser. Ok. Who in the world would go on a show with that name? I guess the same dummies who buy those "Dummy's Guide to Whatever" books. Or is it "Idiot"? I can never remember. I just know they're yellow and black, dangerously similar to Cliff Notes.

Well, suddenly I'm completely exhausted. Over and out...


...it's a problem. I haven't mowed since late last summer. I've raked leaves. Mainly in the front. Except for the big pile which has turned to mulch and smothered my carefully chemically treated zoysia.

After an incredibly difficult day full of curve balls of angst, I decided to become one with the earth. That can be dangerous. Like life, a simple little suburban quarter-acre yard can be loaded with danger. It looks safe from a distance. But it's not.

My yard is full of risks. Poison ivy - mowing it is the worst thing you can do - it sprays its powerful urushiol oil into the air, and wreaks havoc on my skin. My body, my brain, my mood. I'd rather be tear-gassed. Seriously.

Then there are the gumballs. I hate those bastards. That's what they are. The female sweetgum tree indescriminately drops a bazillion zygotes. Fuck her. I keep meaning to call an arborist - I've heard there's a birth control shot for those fuckin' bitch trees. Why they're so dangerous - when you're mowing, they shoot in random directions like pinballs, and can come dangerously close to putting out an eye. Plus, stepping on one can totally screw your ankle. My dear friend Lundy tripped and fell and scraped her knee on one of those mother fuckers at Christmas. Somehow, The D is immune to that danger.

Ok, enough about that. I went out, all full of frustration, intending to finish both the front and back yard. Then I decided I'd just tackle the front. Then I gave up half-way. Garbage can was full. No bags. Plus I wimped out. The D came out to instruct, but since I had my brand new Non-Apple MP3 blasting into my ears full blast, his mouth was moving but nothing was coming out. A good thing. He'd have been an easy target.

So here I am. No social life. Weighing my choices. Should I stay or should I go? I think I'll cook a hamburger for D, take a shower, and head to Good House to escape. My CDs are there. Maybe I'll organize them. Or try to. Or I'll take my guitar and try my new method. Or work on my incredible new groundbreaking idea of guitar finger prosthetics. Or fall asleep in the bathtub. Or the front yard.

Anything is better than this...

Another Fucked-Up Friday...

Unbelievable. I had a nice, organized list for productive, important things to do today by 9:00 this morning. Sarita came and we mapped out our route.

Then the phone call. Family crisis. I went into my phone booth and changed into my SuperSomething persona, prepared to take control and be a heroine. Unfortunately, not all the family was on board. So I did the rational thing and said, "Call me if you decide you need my help." In this case, the family member lashed out and said some hateful things, but since I love and respect this person, I was able to see the response as pain and frustration and anger bordering on rage. I was an easy target. And that's ok.

Families are so complicated. I know. I've made so many mistakes with Kiddo. But always, I own up. I apologize to him. I cry. I tell him how much I love him. I try to explain that my craziness has lots more to do with my own shit than with him. Still, my heart breaks when I remember some of the painful times.

I don't take any credit, but he's an amazing kid, doing amazing things at UNC, an amazing school. I love him desperately, but he's incredibly independent, and so am I. I think we owe that all to his grandmother. I even forget about him sometimes. It's hard to believe that he'll be home in three weeks. For three short weeks. Then he heads to Africa for a month.

I am so very proud of him. I hope one day we can talk about the good and the bad. I just hope he can forgive, and see the good in my mistakes. So many parents can't admit their shortcomings. Damn, I have lots of practice with that. There are so many.

Ok. I'm feeling kinda frustrated, so I think I'll head out the back door and mow the lawn. It'll be a big chore since there are lots of unraked leaves from last fall. Plus, I think I'm out of lawn bags. Might have to borrow some from a neighbor.

Hopefully, in a couple hours, I'll come in, filthy and exhausted, hit the shower and forget my troubles.

It is Friday afternoon, after all...

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

When should you say something?

Like if someone has spinach in their teeth. Or their fly's open. Skirt's tucked in panties in the back.

My general rule is that if I'd want someone to tell me, I tell them. Like today. Went to Schwab to make a deposit. Sweet receptionist had major mascara malfunction. I couldn't take my eyes from it, so I said, "You have a little smudge." She whipped out her compact and carefully corrected it with a little spit on her finger. She said, "Fuck those motherfuckin' inferior bastard quasi-co-workers - they should've told me. Thank you so much."

Ok, I took a little poetic license there, but that was the essence. The point being that someone should've told her. A long discussion re liquid v. pencil v. gel eyeliner ensued. She used liquid - I can't because my hand isn't steady enough. She doesn't like pencil because it tugs the delicate eye tissue. I told her about Rimmel Kohl pencil and we discussed the proper proportions of wax and pigment. She didn't know about gel eyeliner - kind of a hybrid. You use a brush, so you can get very close to the lash line. There's plenty of pigment. And best of all, you can smudge it so it's not harsh. If I tried to use liquid liner, I'd look like Liz Taylor's Cleopatra. Or Priscilla Presley as Elvis' 14 year old concubine. Sans the beehive. The only thing that saves me from the Cleo eyes is that my bangs are always down in my eyes. In second grade, my teacher sent a note home telling my mother to trim my bangs. Damn, she would cut them crooked, try to fix it and overcompensate again and again until they wound up looking like a long toothbrush implanted in my forehead.

Wow, here I go again. Off on a tangent. Back to whether to tell. My only conundrum with this is when a man has his fly unzipped. If I don't know him, I try to discreetly ask another man to tell him after I leave. I'm sure they give him hell, but since I'm not around to blush, that doesn't matter. If I know him well, I'll say "XYZ." If he looks confused, I spell it out for him. And try not to laugh when he reacts. If I know him REALLY well, I just reach down and zip it up myself. Ok, I'm making that last one up.

See, I've been known to walk around with my pants unzipped (especially if they have two backwards buttons at the waist - I can't stay focused on a three part task). I've worn two different shoes. Didn't notice that until I noticed my sudden limp. Spinach in my teeth. Leaves in my hair. You get the idea.

Today, it was my wrap skirt which didn't wrap quite far enough when the wind gusted and my button up blouse that was a tad too tight. I was so busy holding my skirt closed and juggling my cell phone, bank deposits, keys, purse and sunglasses that I didn't notice that the button right in between the sisters had popped open. I did, however, notice a few double takes. I checked to make sure my skirt wasn't tucked in my panties and that there wasn't toilet paper stuck to my foot. That wasn't it. I figured it was my perfectly smudged eyeliner. The sunlight shining on my wind-tousled, chemically-altered hair. Or the fact that I was in Whole Foods, a rose among thorns, since the store was filled with earth mothers who, quite naturally, eschew hair care products, makeup (especially eyeliner) and anything involving chemicals. Hell, I'm sure they all use those stupid crystal rock deodorants which don't do shit. And I know for sure their underarms have never been near a razor. Same with pubes and legs. They think it's sophisticated. European. I hear in Europe they think a bidet can get them a month between showers. Thank god I was born in the USA. Actually, Japan, but that's neither here nor there. I have a glorious, unlimited supply of cheap, wonderfully pure water from artesian wells.

Well, I've lost the whole point of this diatribe. I'll close now by saying that I've changed into shorts (checked the zipper) and a top without buttons. It's a peasant top, which is perfectly suited to my guitar lesson in 10 minutes or so. After a day of high finance, moving money, making major judgments about income tax payments and hoping I don't overdraw any client bank accounts, I'm in the mood to pretend to be Jewel or some Lilith Fair artist.

So off I go...

Toilets, Part III

Yesterday morning, The Daddler marched into my den and began making circles with his hands. He told me we needed a new one. I thought he meant the thermostats at the new house (Saturday,Deb had harped at me about needing new ones). No, that wasn't right. He said the thing you lifted up and down. I could only think of a toilet seat. Just like when I walk through the living room when he has Wheel of Fortune blaring, which he watches religiously, I blurt out the solution when everyone else is still perplexed. By the way, don't you hate how they over- en.un.ci.ate when they say the answer? Maybe it's like Jeapardy where you get the dreaded buzzer if you forget to say, "What is" before giving your answer. I hate that stupid rule. But I digress. I have an uncanny ability to solve puzzles. I should play charades soon.

When I said, "The to.i.let seat?", his face lit up. I asked him to show me. Sure 'nuf, one of the bolts was broken. Just like the one in the Exxon station bathroom which precipitated Deb's recent "Twat on Pot" email.

Hoping to avoid days of agitated reminders from The D, I headed to Lowe's a few hours later. I'd measured for the cushions for the patio furniture I'd moved from their house. I'd pitched the old, faded, mildewed ones and he was mad about that. That reminds me, he's been a broken record about the line that blew down during last week's storm. It must be cable because the power's still on. I should've called by now but I've been paralyzed by trying to figure out whether I should call MLGW or Comcast.

Back to Lowe's. I searched through the cushions for the perfect combination of dimensions and non-hideous-large print floral ones. I was in such a fog, I didn't realize that my 16 inch wide chair would probably hold an 18 inch wide cushion. I suppose after the snafu with the fridge being too wide for the opening, I wanted a little cushion built into the dimensions. Illogical, I know, but I wasn't thinking clearly. Needless to say, I was unsuccessful and left empty handed. Except for a million paint chips. Oops, just remembered that I called Sherwin Williams Saturday to ask for two five gallon buckets of paint before the three day, 40% off sale ended. Need to pick that up. Ok, back to Lowe's. When I was almost home, I realized I hadn't gotten the thing I went for. The toilet seat. Fuck.

I'll try to get to Home Depot later today. For a toilet seat.

Two tears in a bucket...

...motherfuck it.

Yesterday was the day from hell. I was overdue.

I can't talk about specifics, but I'll just say I had an awful experience which brought back so many painful memories of the clusterfuck of my mother's death, funeral and burial and its aftermath.

I called Deb and told her I needed to see her. Since it was close to lunch time, she said she'd take 30 minutes. She works so hard and the clinic is so busy that she rarely leaves for lunch. She just bolts down her food. Her table manners are atrocious. When I tell her to slow down (like I did at Thanksgiving dinner), she tells me she has to eat in two minutes at work and does it without thinking.

We headed to Chick-Fil-A and she had nuggets (The Coupon Queen got them free). My stomach was in knots so I just had a big Coke Zero (which I had to pour out a few minutes later because I put it in my car's cupholder which contained push pins and they punched holes in the bottom of the cup). Thank god I'm not a stress eater or I'd be big as a barn.

Deb listened to my saga, and joined in my outrage. It really helped me. She and I had made it through the craziness together. I couldn't have survived without her.

When I dropped her at her office, she came out with one of her patented movie quotes: "It's like my mom always said: "Two tears in a bucket, motherfuck it.""

I laughed so hard and made her say it over and over until I caught my breath and asked her where she'd come up with that one. She told me it was The Lady Chablis from Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. She is an encyclopedia of delicious nuggets of movie quotes. She can quote them beautifully, perfectly capturing the essence of the character. She is gifted this way. Like me, she can glean the humor from the horror. And we both relish irreverence. We've laughed and cried together so many times in the last seven months.

Her bosses and co-workers are crazy about her for reasons like this: She has this photo framed and prominently displayed in her office. It's Al Pacino in Scarface. Whenever anyone comments on it, she channels his character and says, "Say hello to my little friend."

Gotta love that girl.

Monday, April 11, 2011

It's Been a Hard Day's Night...

...and I've been workin' like a dog. Since 4 a.m. That 10 hours. Made MAJOR progress on clients' tax returns. Huge relief. There's more to do, but the lion's share is done. Now I have to extend mine. Gotta figure out how much I need to pay with my extension. I think I'll just pay as much as I can. Finally did March billing, but I need to do February, too. It's the cobbler's children who have no shoes. Putting off billing. Extending my own freakin' return.

I figure clients can see my lack of urgency in billing them in one of two ways.
1) I have plenty of cash so I won't be tempted to embezzle.
2) I have plenty of cash so I'm charging them too much.

Today, I swooped in to client's office. Started barking orders at Mikie. I was in major dyslexic state. We bickered (in a very good-natured way) like usual. I have to say, I was exuding CFO. Especially since I treated Mikie like my minion. And I wore a really cool outfit. All incredible thrift store finds. A black blouse with small white dots. Fits me perfectly. In fact, the dots form an optical illusion and exaggerate my proportions. So my boobies look bigger and my waste looks smaller. Light green skirt which doesn't make my whiter than white legs glow. Cute sandals. My black pebble-grain leather tote. I'm not good with transitional clothes but I think this was appropriate. I almost wore corduroy and wool since the house was a frigid 67 degrees (trying to please The D after last night's Thermostat Rant.)

The nice thing is that they try to minimize my time since Mikie is: a) cheaper than me, and b) better than me. Dammit. Gotta get that non-compete. We're a great team and I have a very happy client.

Back to my dyslexia. The parking lot was full so I had to park in the back of the building. There are two look-a-like buildings adjacent to each other. I parked behind the wrong building. Went in the back door and thought the hallway didn't look right. I was happy to see recycle bins, though. Then a man appeared. He looked kinda like Wilford Brimley in The Firm. I asked him where my client was. He'd never heard of my client. Wow, I was confused. I said they must be in the building next door. He asked me how I'd gotten in. He looked like he was ready to draw a weapon. I told him I came in the back door, and I sashayed to the front door. He seemed shocked. When I got to the front door, it was locked. He said he'd let me out. Didn't unlock it by turning the latch - disappeared to some mysterious control room to unlock it with some sort of high-security device. I'm sure he had all kinds of security cameras ogling me. Glad I was in a cute outfit.

I said, "Ha, I guess you had a security breach!" He said, "Yes. Thank you." He wasn't amused. I have a feeling some poor schmuck employee went away today.

When I made it safely to my destination, I told my story and asked my client what that company was about. They didn't know. Our only exposure to them was the warning notices tucked under our windshields telling us, in no uncertain terms, not to park in their spaces. That's the only frickin' reason I parked in the back of the building instead of all the empty spaces in front. I told my client that they had "Be Kind" emblazoned on their vehicles. Strange.

Rewind to 4:30 this morning. I couldn't find my favorite leather satchel which held my client's tax returns and signed checks. Decided to head to The Good House. Couldn't find it. Tested the motion detector lights and took the recycle bins to the street.

Traveled the 9/10 mile back home. Still couldn't find satchel. Remembered that it was in the mini-van at Good House. Headed back. Sure 'nuf, there it was. Thank god.

The D got up at 6:45. Way early for him. Too early for me. He asked me about our neighbor he wants to till his vegetable garden at Good House. I told him to look for him and ask him. Nothing about the temp. Since I was shivering, I turned it up to 71. He berated me for the lack of clean coffee mugs. I have a million but Sarita's moved most of them to Good House. I washed a dirty one and he found something else and sulked. Refused to wait for the one I was washing.

Called FF since I didn't hear my fucked up cell phone ring last night. We had a nice little convo, I let myself crush on him a little, and then I got back to work.

Got a sweet email from my iced-tea snorting friend (just when she reads my blog.) This time, she said she peed her pants. Greatest compliment ever! For some strange reason, she's reluctant to post a comment. Go figure.

I think that covers it. But I'm sure I've left lots out. Like The D stepping in cat barf. My stepping in cat barf. Deb coming up with her latest idea for a lawsuit.

But the day is young. I'm sure I'll have more to report later. For now, I'm signing off...

Sunday, April 10, 2011


I put it on 68. He'll be sure to complain that it's cold.

Not 'til later though. I hear him clapping. He's watching the Masters.

I'm thinking of whether I want to pull some strings with a friend who could get me VIP passes to the St. Jude tourney in June. Probably not. It'll be too hot and he'll bitch about that.

Better get back to mouse problem. Shit. It's always something.

Elder Abuse...

...I'm on the brink of it. He just marched into the den and tried to tell me something with vague words and sign language. In a pissy tone of voice. I figured out that he meant the thermostat. I didn't know which house he was talking about. Finally he blurted out "75". I asked him if that was too hot for him. He angrily gestured and complained using random words. Finally, I asked him, not using my inside voice, what he wanted it on. He couldn't give me a number. Fuck, he's getting on my last nerve, which is already frazzled.

I need a vacation. And a beer. Or two or twelve...

Getting Even

After The D's barrage of Carol Criticism yesterday, I thought of a funny trick to play. I woke up at 9:00 this morning to the sound of clomping men's dress shoes. I got out of bed to see what was going on. The D was sitting in his throne recliner wearing his tennis shoes. I asked him if there was someone else in the house. Those were definitely not tennis shoe footsteps. He looked at me like I was crazy.

Then he asked me if we could go to church. I really didn't feel like it, but being the sweet, selfless daughter that I am, I told him we would. I had to jump in the shower and put on makeup and get dressed. I left my hair 'til last. I guess I forgot to put conditioner on my hair because when I took the towel off my head, my hair was a huge, crazy, tangled mess.
I had a little flash of inspiration. I left my hair exactly like it was. Then I announced as I walked into the throne room that I was ready to go. I wish you could have seen the look of horror on his face. He was speechless. Finally, he managed to say, "Get that thing off!" He thought it was a wig. So I had a good laugh and headed back to the bathroom to tame my mane. A few minutes later, I told him I was ready and he seemed really relieved to seem my hair looking a little less like Tina Turner's. I asked him if that was better and he said it was. So I took that as a compliment.

Out of six hymns, I only knew four. The music man needs to rein it in. Old people and lapsed Baptists don't like new hymns that span three octaves. The D needs me to find the page in the hymnal and we use the same one so I can point to the words. I usually like to sing alto, especially when the sopranos need the range of Maria Callas. But since there was a substite organ player who missed more notes that I do, I sang the melody. I noticed The D sang more when I was screeching out the soprano part. Since the people on the three rows in front of us were pushing 100 and I figured they had some hearing impairment, I belted it out, pretty loudly. Besides, The D can't hear very well.

We had communion today, which for Baptists is called The Lord's Supper. They only do it once every two or three months. It's a very solemn ritual. The pastor was moved to tears. I'm ashamed to admit that I was having carnal thoughts during the service. Don't judge me, though. Remember my ADD. Besides, I resisted texting - that should count for something. The cracker was rancid, but I guess I deserved that. I was ready for the tiny cup of grape juice.

Ok, better close now. Daddy's chomping at the bit to go to the Good House. First I have to check something on client's kids' returns, and then I can take him. And enjoy the beautiful sunshine.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

A Big Ole Slice a' Life, Redneck Style

Sometimes I have a hard time coming up with a good title for my posts. Not this time. I had a really good alternate: The Summer Avenue Believe It or Not Experience.

I blogged earlier in the week about getting T-Boned by an old man in a motorized grocery cart. Well, today, my little sis, Deb, did her usual Saturday thing with The D. It's like I'm the custodial parent and she's the Weekend Divorced Dad who just has fun with his kids every other weekend. Today's outing was lunch at The Cottage (old southern meat & three kinda place), a trip to the old-fashioned barber shop on Summer Avenue, and an assessment of progress on the new house. No wonder she's his favorite. Today she said he told her that I talk on the phone all the time. She brought her week's worth of coffee grounds for him to use for fertilizer (it's supposed to be good for gardenias and azaleas) and he said he was taking them to the "Good House." Not this here substandard place. And to think he didn't like the new house at first.

So, after my 1:00 client meeting, I met them at the Good House and when I walked in the door, they were tromping around in their dirty shoes on my very light beige carpet, marveling at my lack of organization (Deb tells me all the time that I'm a hoarder), and in general, happily discussing all my shortcomings. Deb was bitching that it was hot in there. Oh, she said it was hot in Old House, too. Then she whips out a phone number of a firefighter who moonlights as a handyman. She'd given him my name, address and phone number. I asked her if Steve was a patient at her clinic and she said, "No, he had a sign on the wall at the barber shop." I replied, "Oh, great, you don't even know him." She retorted, "No, he could be a serial killer for all I know." Then she proceeds to tell me that I MUST get the gutters cleaned out. The D jumped in and said I need to get covers on them. Then she told me I needed Serial Killer Steve to rake the leaves and trim the dead limbs and clean up my yard in general. And that I needed to get him to clean out my gutters. Again. I told her that I could climb out my upstairs bedroom window onto the roof and do it myself. She then told me that I'd get bitten by a brown recluse spider.

Same with raking the leaves. I swear, in the coarse of two hours, she talked about the dangers of brown recluse spiders no fewer than a dozen times. Then I had her take The D and me to his and Mother's house to fetch some things. She insisted on getting the half-dozen bottles of Old Spice he had there. Never mind that she got him a great big bottle for Christmas and that these were 20 years old. Then he remembered the king-sized sheets he's told me about 15 times this week. I went into his tool shed and looked at all the great, old things he had in there. My favorite was a metal file with a corn cob for a handle. Oh, back to the bathroom closet - there were five kinds of foot powders and potions. All ancient. I think my OCD tendencies are genetic. Fortunately, I don't have enough time or energy or focus for them to bloom.

Then we headed to the yard barn. I found some useful things there. Decorative wall hooks, a great plastic kitchen garbage can, my brother's old Air Force metal case (lunch box or something) with our last name stenciled on it. Meanwhile, Deb started pitching stuff into the garbage. I told her to stop - I wanted to see everything first. She told me I was a hoarder. Then The D grabbed up a bunch of old extension cords and wanted to take them and Deb told him they were fire hazards and he didn't talk back. Oh, in the yard barn, there were all kinds of creepy things, including, but not limited to, rat poop, those fuzzy spider egg things and wasps. And I'm sure lots of brown recluse spiders.

Oh, get this. I asked Daddy to go get us any of his roses that might be in bloom. Deb said he'd already looked and there weren't any. So I looked around and found a little red one in the front. I took it to The D and told him to give it to Deb and he said he'd already given her one. That little piss-ant.

Finally, I got in the van and said I was leaving and if Daddy didn't come with, Deb could bring him home. She had me blocked in, so that was an empty threat. He finally materialized in the front seat and I shouted at him to turn on the air conditioner. See, he starts barking that command at me before I even start the engine. Then I said I hoped we didn't get stopped because Deb hadn't put the registration or insurance card in the van (Daddy had given her the van). Like usual, he didn't believe me and he opened the glove box and whipped out Mother's neatly organized folder and showed me the registration which expired on December 31, 2010. I told him it was expired. He didn't reply. So I called Deb and told her that The D said she'd better get that damn registration and that damn insurance card into the damn van right away. He started hollering, "I didn't say that! She said that! That girl's crazy!" Not the first time I've been accused of that. I'm beginning to take it as a compliment.

Back to the spiders. When I finally hung up the phone, I felt a brown recluse spider on my face. I was swerving all over the road. I told The D to get the spider. He said there "wasn't no spider." I said yes there was. I almost pulled over and stripped, but tricked myself into thinking it was just my hair being blown against my neck by the blasting A/C.

Oh Fuck. At this very moment, bulimic cat is vomiting. Great. I don't know what I'm going to do about her. The D said we're keeping her. I'll figure it out after tax season. Maybe if he wants to pay hundreds of dollars for a bunch of diagnostic tests and expensive medicine, I'll take her to get checked out. But since it's bulimia, we'd probably need to take her to a cat psychologist. Wonder how much that runs? I'll figure it out after tax day.

Oh, speaking of tax day and Deb's harping, she launched in about my ancient thermostats in the Good House and I told her I'd figure it out later, when I had more time. She said I needed electronic thermostats and she'd take care of it. I'm sure Steve the Serial Killer Handyman could do it. Fuck, she'll probably give him a freakin' key to my house.

I made The D tell her about the man who was super-glued to the WalMart toilet seat and she said she'd sue their asses. I asked her how they'd be at fault and she said, "I don't know but I'd figure something out." God help us all. I told her I'd blogged about her Twat on Pot email and she was mad. I told her that I'd called her my friend, not my sister, and that I'd changed her doc's name to Dr. Shrink. But here ya go, Deb (not that you ever read my blog), I'm outing you. So sue me.

OMG, I just glanced at the title of my post and I realized I'm so off course. Kroger.

After taking The D to lunch and the barbershop, she went to the Kroger on Summer Avenue. Scene of my T-Bone incident. Here's the text she sent me: Strange people at kroger on summer. One man looked like Elvis and another man had an old woman riding on his lap in an electric cart and she had no teeth.

Ok, I think I've said enough. I hate to be repetitive, and I'm sure you know how I'm going to close: I couldn't make this stuff up.