Under My Skin

I’m so peaced out, nothing gets under my skin. Except EVERYTHING. I’ll try to keep this brief.

  • Bad Press = More of the Same: In the olden days (last year), employees of GIANT DELIVERY SERVICES actually brought packages to your door. Numerous news clips over the past few months indicate some employees simply use your address as a target, the package as an arrow. We won’t even talk about the condition of the contents of said package/arrow. One would think GIANT DELIVERY SERVICES would have a chat with their staff, requesting true delivery of packages as opposed to Hail Mary target practice. Not so much. My recent experience:

Thanks, UPS

  • Car Dealership Service Departments: Maybe it’s just me, but I believe these should be renamed “Car Dealership So What Departments”. Living in a huge city, there are often numerous places to have your car “maintained”. Not mine. One dealership-from-hell. The service department is chock full of truly angry people with a collective offensive linebacker mentality when it comes to service. Slam that customer to the ground asap. Should your car need anything, it’s all your fault, not covered under warranty, and that will be 17 grillion dollars plus tax, tip, title, gratuity, and first dibs on future grandchildren to recover your vehicle. See ya never!

All I needed was an oil change 😦

  •  So Where Do I Get My Car Serviced?: Faced with this question yesterday, I went straight to the Wizard a.k.a. Google. Spent the better part of the day doing my research online. Selected the lucky service garage (keyword “loaner car”), rang them up, made my appointment for today. This morning, I packed some supplies (food, water, phone) and headed out to the garage. Which is in another town. I did have a map but am directionally dyslexic; maps serve me as well as Car Dealership So What Departments. One hour later – complete with 456 twists and turns – I’m there! Wherever that is. Everything is going along perfecto until we get to loaner car. Apparently there are just a few from which to choose. And here it comes …. “Can you drive a stick?”. Yes, of course I can drive a stick but haven’t since I was in my teens. “No”. A little bit of hemming and hawing and a big white thing appears in the driveway. I have no idea what it is but it goes forward and backward automatically. So I’m not really ranting about the new service provider, just the fact that I have to leave town to get my car taken care of. Wackadoodledo.
  • Car & Pet Wash: Swear on everything, I saw this place on my way back from wherever my car is. I am so taking photos tomorrow to prove it. In the meantime, I am quite confused how this situation works. Do you multitask by attaching dog to hood of car? That’s unacceptable. Does the cat drive the car, with perfume flowing through the air vents? Have you ever heard of this?

Is it too early to drink?

Later.

Are You Kidding Me? Part 200

If I were an angry person, I would already be in prison. As it is, I’ve already pulled out all my hair because of these STUPID questions I can’t answer.

I just moved all my insurance. I just paid for all my insurance. Now, I get a million pages of questions about said insurance which must be answered a year ago:

  • Number of amps in electrical system – The only amps I’ve heard of are on an electric guitar. 
  • Fuses: Yes or No – Yes, I have a fuse and it is getting shorter by the second.
  • Knob & Tube or Aluminum Wiring – I am not wired to give out this information even if I knew what the hell you are talking about.
  • Plumbing system condition – The toilets flush.
  • Open or closed foundation – My home sits on something; have no idea about the emotional state of my foundation.
  • Copy of burglar alarm permit – This one is so easy; in my city, you have to apply, and then they DON’T send you a copy. So you go online and request a copy. Which is impossible to obtain unless you are an accomplished hacker.
  • Aircraft on premises? – Yes, I live in a townhouse and I have a DC-10 in my garage. Doesn’t everyone?

I immediately phoned and emailed my insurance agent for help. HELP! Was tickled pink to receive the following message:

“Hi! This is your insurance agent!

 I will be out of the office until the 12th of Never.

If you need to speak to someone, call your mother. Have a great day!”

Am sure there are many women who know all these answers. I’m not in your club.

Must make choice now: move insurance AGAIN or self-immolation. Leaning toward latter.

Later.

Maybe.

When Size Does and Doesn’t Matter

Large/Small. Fat/Thin. Ecstatic/Not so much. There are circumstances when size is mas importante, there are times when it matters not.

Size Matters

  • Size of bank account when paying bills.
  • Size of shoes – stuffing a size 8 into a size 7 and hobbling around = OUCH!
  • Size of the sky – city dwellers have a reduced view; if you look at the night sky anywhere in far West Texas, the stars begin at the ground and are so profuse, the sky part is minimal. This would be good for the soul. And beyond beautiful.
  • Size of airline seats – unless you are 11 years old, a long flight in steerage  the cheap seats can propel you right into a hip replacement. Practicing fetal position before boarding helps a bit. Plus, I think the airlines should put labels on the arm rests; even though they are as big as a clothes pin, which one belongs to which seat? Really! First-class and business travelers, feel our pain! Not really, you paid not to. Trade seats?
  • Size of parking spots – please don’t park a honking land yacht in a space marked “Compact Cars”. There is nothing compact about a Suburban or a Monster Truck. Except maybe the ashtray and I don’t think they make those anymore.
  • Size of heart, spiritually speaking – can it ever be big enough? Methinks not.
  • Size of smile – a big one goes a long way.

Size Doesn’t Matter (to me)

  • Size of your bank account – not my business. Keeping eyes on own paper.
  • Size of clothing – numbers make me crazy; if it fits, wear it; if not, give it away. Sizes seem to make a lot of people feel bad about themselves. Just stupid numbers, people!
  • Size of shelter – matters not a whit.Protection from the elements.What does matter is making that shelter a home. Favorite quote: “People who are homeless are not social inadequates. They are people without a home.” I think home can be wherever you are.

Mushing.

See ya.

Later.

Booking It

Better get these on the books before I get bored and start … handfishing with hillbillies. Not really. I don’t hang with hillbillies. And my relationship with fish involves cooking and a fork. But I digress …

Just read, am reading, will read:

  • The Other Tudors, Henry VIII’s Mistresses and Bastards by Philippa Jones. My obsession with all things Henry continues. Jones was/is a historian, and a good one at that. Each page is so full of information, I might finish when I’m 75, but this is a good book.
  • An Available Man by Hilma Wolitzer. The story of a 62-year-old widower thrust back into the world of women. Not a snore. This is a  good read and full of surprises. Brava, Hilma!
  • Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo. At my bedside, ready to read next. Great reviews for this “jaw-dropping” portrait of modern India.
  • Rules of Civility by Amor Towles. Stylish portrait of the higher life in 1930s New York. Still reading … really like the narrator but the lifestyle makes me want to go to AA and the characters make me sad.
  • The House at Tyneford by Natasha Solomons 
  • Gone With A Handsomer Man by Michael Lee West. Have always been a huge MLW fan; this would be my least favorite of all her book. Whining.
  • Rules for Virgins by Amy Tan. This one is a Kindle Single – a 40-page story that may or may not be part of future book. Shanghai. 1912. Former courtesan advising aspiring one. Fascinating.

Later.

Habits to Kick with Both Feet & Habits to Embrace

“If at first you don’t succeed, you’re running about average.”

(Marian Hamilton Alderson)

“Average doesn’t cut it.”

(Me)

Note to self: do something, anything about the following:

    • Onion dip and potato chips are not a healthy dinner choice. If this is unavoidable, check out Clinton Kelly‘s recipe for homemade onion dip – it is beyond tasty.
    • Emotions are fickle; do not confuse with truth.
    • Finish one project before starting another. But there are so many, I get bored and am easily distracted …. oh, okay, take ADHD vitamin and focus.
    • When it becomes a choice to be kind or be right, always choose kind. Being right – and smug – ain’t all it’s cracked up to be. It is cracked. For me.
    • Always take bag when walking dog. Sometimes I forget and dog does his thing. This situation is sort of like stepping on a crack – no bag and business means I will step in it shortly.
    • Keep your friends close and your frenemies at bay. Yeah, yeah … the saying says keep enemies closer. Ridiculous. Choosing to have a bad experience over a great one? Not an option for me.
    • Make a comment instead of pushing “Like” button when reading blog posts.This is addressed to me – “like” is great, so no haters. I push the “like” button all the time. But am going to attempt to do otherwise; if bloggers have taken the time to write and I have taken the time to read their posts, then it makes sense for me to commiserate, congratulate, admire … whatever. But you are welcome to “like” me anytime you want.
    • Stop wearing clothes inside out. Happens all the time. Must slow down and look in mirror before exiting home. This sort of issue is crazy cat lady stuff. I don’t have a cat. And I’m not crazy. That’s a lie. A little bit crazy. Acknowledge contemporary insanity and slow down when dressing.
    • Lead with love and compassion. Yesterday, a woman came into the shop where I work. She was looking for a hat and veil for her best friend. Whose husband had passed away. Although we’d never met, we spent a good hour trying to find the perfect pillbox hat for her bereaved friend to wear to the funeral. During that time, we talked about any and everything. And when she left, tears were rolling down both our cheeks. She was an amazing example of leading with love. And a stellar reminder to me to do the same.
Dashing ….
Later.

Here’s to You, and You, and You

Just getting it off my chesticles:

  • To 32-year-old civil rights lawyer with really long hair: love your job, long hair is cool, dancing at event is fun but anything else, NO CAN DO! Not a fan of Harold and Maude situations. Give Demi Moore a jingle when she gets to feeling better. Caio!
  • To woman who asks me my name despite the fact we’ve met 346 times: none of your business, obviously. Get off the meds, you’ve lost whatever mind you had.
  • To the waiter from hell on his first night: bless your heart. You got a 20% tip because we felt sorry for you. Please, in the name of all diners, seek a new occupation. Art school? Banjo player in Vegas? Anything BUT waiting tables.  Thank you.
  • To the woman who thinks she knows it all: oh no you don’t! Go to the hardware store, buy some duct tape and put it over your mouth. Then go to the compassion store and clear the shelves. Haven’t the faintest where you can get a conscience, but wouldn’t be a bad idea to look into that, either.
  • To my dog: yes, I love you to the moon and back. I take better care of you than I do myself.  But you must stop creeping around eating God knows what in the middle of the night. Waking up to the sound of gagging does not put a festive spin on the day. Thank you.
  • To the woman who used to tidy up my house and empty my liquor cabinet: all is forgiven, it is a heinous job. I would get drunk, too, but alas … you drank me dry. Nevermind.
  • To all the nice friends we ran into at the “no one goes there” restaurant: that was not me in the baseball cap. Evil twin. Swear.
  • To Amazon, Kindle, Nook and other businesses selling/delivering books to iPad, etc.: stop blaming “the publishers” for the inflated book prices. You could do something about this if you wanted to, but you know how lazy we are. Stop It. While the product is convenient, it is usually riddled with weirdo spaces and funky words. STOP IT. Note to self: get up and go to the bookstore. Stop the madness. You should be ashamed of yourself. I am. Over.
  • To the Food Channel: I became an addict a few days after 9/11 … because your spot was all happiness and recipes and a total escape. Please lose “Fat Chef”. No disrespect meant to the plight of the obese but sad doesn’t look good on you. Make a deal with Lifetime or Bravo. Thank you.

Enough ranting.

Off to find my happy pants!

Later.

Weirdos and Words: Get Your Freak On

I love words. Which means I am a logophile. Have used this as my defense every time I get a message from WWF player calling bs on my submission. Bam! I love words. Sue me.

It could be much worse. Sharing ….

alektorophilia – obsession with roosters or chickens

gynotikolobomassophile – nibbler of women’s earlobes

harpaxophilia – affinity for getting robbed

apodysophilia – “feverish desire to undress”

An apodysophiliac might want to meet a clinophiliac because the clino has a passion for beds. Ok, no more matchmaking.

labeorphily – student and collector of beer bottle labels

pogonophile – beard lover

spermophile – “member of family of seed-loving rodents”; this one is weird. I know a lot of rodents, but they are human and drive cars. Must ask if they eat seeds.

If you are a logophile, there’s a great new iPhone app, Wordy, The Logophile’s Primer. The word for today is ““grindhouse“. I thought it was maybe a mill for grits but no …. a grindhouse is a “low-budget film theater that shows primarily exploitation films”. Nevermind.

Now I’m bored. The word for that is “flighty“.

Later.

*Don’t take your kids to a grindhouse to see Mary Poppins. Not gonna happen.

Should, Could, Probably Won’t

Oh My! Lent begins tomorrow and I’ve yet to figure out what to do. Am “supposed” to give up at least one thing in the spirit of sacrifice, but giving up is not an option at this point. There are too many things I could and/or should give up or do …. hmm …

  1. Do not contemplate existence at night: really am going to try this as trying to figure anything out after dark does not serve me well.
  2. Use the phone: the biggest complaint about me (to my face) is that I live in a no-phone zone. Meaning I don’t call anyone much. Not because I don’t want to talk, I do. My phone phobia is a result of a past job wherein I was required to answer my home phone, office phone, cell phone and a beeper at all hours. And no, I wasn’t a bail bondsman or bounty hunter.  Am getting a bit better … inch by inch … maybe … occasionally … not so much?
  3. Stop eating chocolate: not. going. to. happen.
  4. Stop eating fast food: this is a cheat, I don’t eat fast food.
  5. Stop flipping off idiot drivers: better do this; it’s just a matter of time until my middle finger is blown off by a driver packing heat. Note to self: turn the sass down when on road.
  6. Stop spending: oh, this could be good. Notice to mortgage company and any other business that requires me to bleed money – I’m giving up the bills for Lent. Love ya, mean it.
  7. Take dog on long walk: up for consideration … Australia, the Great Wall of China, Ohio …..
  8. Find balance: really. If you know where this is, please advise.

So much to do, so little time.

Dashing.

Be happy. It’s a choice. A hard choice for me, sometimes, but a choice nonetheless.

Eleven Things I Know Are True

*Never get to blog anymore so when that one fine moment presents itself, I’m in. Which may explain why my posts are lengthy – want to get all these thoughts down because I don’t know when I’ll get back again. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. I miss my friends in blogville. But the bills must be paid.

————————————————————————————————————————————————–

  1. Laughing feels so good.
  2. It’s ok to cry.
  3. Author Regina Brett says, “Everyone is important to someone.” I think she’s right.
  4. Sometimes I struggle with my age – even though it is only a number; I’m perpetually 27 but lately my bod had been issuing ugly reminders that I’m not … knees screaming about all the running and aerobics, back screeching about ridiculous yoga positions, arms bitching about carrying heavy stuff. My daughters gave me a Wii for Christmas. They said I couldn’t possibly do the Michael Jackson dance videos. Game on, I did them and got the high scores. No matter that I pulled a calf muscle. The look on their faces when they found out was worth the limp.
  5. It’s fun having hair. Mine is now long enough to put up in a crazy mess on top of my head. I LOVE that. Sort of weird – why grow hair out to put up. Because I can.
  6. Have mentally tossed a lot of people out of my lifeboat this year. Maybe a touch passive-aggressive, but the swimmers have no clue they’ve lost their spots, which is why they are gone in the first place. Duh.
  7. I love surprises! Today, two different adorables left me valentines and treats! Am I lucky or what?
  8. I can live with the fact that my daughters, on some level, will never forgive me for divorcing their dad. It is what it is. And that’s ok. At the risk of beating a very popular dead horse, I have to put on my oxygen mask first in order to help anyone else.
  9. Faith. Faith can be a real bugaboo for me. There are some things I know, and no noise can knock me off course. Other questions seemingly have no answers and comfort doesn’t exist. So I have to find that quiet place and hang there for a while.
  10. Work is good for me. Am so grateful to be working in crazy wonderful environments.
  11. Just finished cooking Valentine’s feast for my choice of best Valentine’s date in a long time … my eldest daughter! It will be great … as long as we don’t discuss politics, religion, money, furniture, or the future. Awesome.

This is lame and random. I am tired. Will return with ridiculous stories of real life adventures, sooner than later.

Happy Valentine’s Day.

Be happy. Your choice.

Heimliching My Dog and Other Stuff

Bear with me here – haven’t posted in so long, my fingers are rusty. But let’s do get down to business nonsense.

So, my dog will not re-enter the house without my giving him a treat. My bad and he’s a fatso as a result. But I digress. Several weeks ago, I provided the requisite treat to get his fat self back in the house. The treat was rather large. Several minutes later, I noticed him walking in circles, mouth open, ears down … choking. Somewhere, I’d read something about someone giving the Heimlich Maneuver to their animal. So I got my arms around him, did HM and out popped the offender. He was so happy, he went straight into Liberace mode.

Himself, after donning his faux fur stole

Hairy Stuff

So, my hair is longer than it’s been in 22 years. Big whoop, you say. Well, it’s working for me in two ways. First, my “do” is so patently different from my former “pixie”, I can go almost anywhere undetected. Really, people I’ve known since I was 12 don’t recognize me. So great for covert operations and dodging people I can’t possibly be nice to. Second, men like hair. Who knew? I’ve grown my hair out because I wanted to, period. But it is hilarious how many men talk to me. This is not a vanity thing; when you are a certain age, the eyes aren’t what they once were and I think they are just now figuring out I’m not a boy. Je suis tout étonné.

Need some awesome White Elephant gifts? I did and boy, did I hit the jackpot at Dollar Tree. Got 12 separate hair extension situations (a bevy of colors) for $12; my friends will be delighted.

Fab hair extensions, complete with braided bandeau

Old Photos

My mom keeps giving me old family photos. Here’s the latest – it’s really a dear mother/child shot.

My grandmother and mother - love

Books

Am working through a load of pages. My book club is reading “Unbroken” by Laura Hillenbrand. Having a bit of a time getting into it. Other pages I’m turning:

  • Big White Panties by Dale Alderman – sort of amusing but no classic
  • Stupid and Contagious by Caprice Crane – she’s pretty funny
  • Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer – loved this even though it broke my heart

Bargains

Two words:  Dollar Store. No, you can’t buy everything there, but you can save some bucks. Aside from hair extensions, these spots are the best for wrapping paper, gift sacks, tissue, dental floss and weirdo stuff from childhood. Have also found an online shopping secret … check out websites you purchase from; they often featured unadvertised discounts – like 30-40% off. Experts say the discounts will only get deeper. Just so you know.

Ok, gotta mush.

Be happy – it’s a choice.

Later.