Friday, February 28, 2014

The Girl Scout Cookie Story

So, last Sunday I was out at the grocery store. It's Girl Scout Cookie season here in Kentucky and there was a table of little girls and their moms selling them in the foyer. I usually order mine from one of my coworkers, but I more often than not pick up an extra box or two when I come across those tables. ESPECIALLY if the girls are actively selling (instead of letting the adults do it) and are polite. Well, this table was staffed by three of the cutest little Brownies ever. I was approached by a tiny, snaggle-toothed little sweetheart who lisped "Excuthe me, mith, would you like to buy our cookies?" I told her not right then, but I'd stop on my way back out.

I collected the handful of things I needed and made my way back out of the store. I couldn't resist, so I'd gotten enough cash back on my debit card to buy ONE box. One of the other girls saw me coming and ran over to ask, again, VERY politely, if i'd like a box. I said yes, went to the table, and told the adults that their Brownies were two of the politest cookie sellers I'd ever met and it would be an honor to buy a box from them. They were quite pleased to hear that and then this happened:

The third little girl walked toward a man on his way out and (still politely) asked him if he'd like to buy some cookies. He could have simply said NO, or No, Thank you, but this cretin instead chose to swear at a little girl who couldn't have been more than 7 years old. "No, I don't want no damn cookies. That fucking shit is too high."

Ok, y'all know me. I may not be that crazy about kids, but even I don't swear at them without a damn good reason, and even then, I usually swear at the adult responsible for them instead of the child. And seeing the way that poor little girl's face fell, I wasn't going to let that go. She ran back to her mom, close to tears, and buried her face in Mom's sweater. I signaled to both mothers that the boom was about to be lowered.

I walked over to the jackhole and said, "Was it really necessary to swear at a young girl who was asking you a question, using her best manners? Would you do that if your mother was here?" He began to stammer explanations, but I cut him off. Handing him my freshly purchased box of Samoas, I said "Please take these as my gift and hopefully they'll sweeten your attitude before you encounter anyone else." (I can't believe I gave away a box of Samoas, and to a jerk, no less) He stood there in stunned disbelief as I walked away.

I looked back over my shoulder (in case he decided to come after me or something) and he was on his knees by the table apologizing to the little girl he made cry. So apparently some people CAN learn.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

February Goals, Update 2

Well, the month is almost over. I didn't do as well on my goals as I'd hoped to. I DID succeed in taking out the trash at least once a week. I washed some of the laundry, but didn't get anything folded or put away. Came nowhere close to getting Mom's present stitched (maybe by Mother's Day?) or cooking at home as often as I wanted to. We won't even discuss cleaning house.

So, March Goals:

1. 1 positive post of some sort on FaceBook everyday. (I can't get on the blog every day or i'd do it here, and it seems like cheating to schedule 31 posts in advance)

2. keep up with getting the trash out at least once a week.

3. the whole cooking thing (I did put a soup in the crockpot for tonight, so maybe it's the turning of a new leaf. And if it's good, I'll post the recipe for it here tomorrow))

4. Start AND finish at least one small cross stitch piece.

5. Tackle Laundry Mountain in earnest. I'm tired of hunting for socks & underwear.

6. Start cleaning. Seriously. I have just under two months before Chad & Mel get here. Yes, my house is THAT bad. I blame my CFS mostly, but have to start sucking it up and getting my flabby butt in gear.

7. try to blog a bit more.

Let's see how well I do this time!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Good Memories 2

I don't have a lot of good memories from Junior High/middle school. But one that stands out is from my 9th grade year. The science department was taking a group of students on a bus trip to Washington DC. I begged and pleaded with my parents to be able to go- it was a lot of money for us, but I REALLY wanted to go. Then my parents got a check from the IRS for an overpayment for the year before. We all needed to see doctors, I needed new glasses, and the car always needed work, but Mom said it was a sign and I was going on that trip. YAY.

The trip itself was a disaster. 75 deranged teenagers, 5 teachers, and one bus driver who hated everybody. We stopped at Luray Caverns on the way up, where 3 idiot boys wandered off and it took the guides 3 hours to find them and my crush, Troy, got his wallet stolen. We toured part of the Smithsonian and I got to see the model of the Starship Enterprise that is seen in the opening credits of the original Star Trek series and buy a mini replica that I STILL have.

The highlight of the trip was the dinner theater show. I'd been chosen to help the teacher in charge of the trip coordinate everyone's orders a week or so before the show. I don't recall the EXACT details, but we basically had to choose between chicken or beef for dinner and then the special orders had to be written up for the 3 students & 1 teacher who had dietary restrictions. I sorted through the paperwork, recorded everyone's choices, and presented Mrs. Pender with a typed up- in triplicate, no less- list of the sorted entree choices, alphabetized by traveller's last name. She was impressed and showed it to the other chaperones, which got me labelled a suck up by my fellow students. (it also got me upgraded to a better steak as a reward for my effort, heh heh heh)

So, after running the teachers ragged all day, the night before we went home, we got dressed up & went to the theatre. I wish I could remember the name of the place. We were originally scheduled to see Guys & Dolls, but they had changed shows and none of the chaperones knew. So instead of a gangster musical, we got to see A Chorus Line. None of them was familiar with it, but they figured it was probably ok...

...And it was, right up to the point where one character breaks into an ode to plastic surgery called "Dance 10, Looks 3."

If you can't access the clip from the movie version, here's a sample of the lyrics:

Dance: Ten; Looks: Three.
And I'm still on unemployment,
Dancing for my own enjoyment.
That ain't it, kid! That ain't it, kid!

"Dance: Ten, Looks: Three,"
Is like to die!
; Left the theatre and
Called the doctor
For my appointment to buy...

Tits and ass.
Bought myself a fancy pair.
Tightened up the derriere.
Did the nose with it.
All that goes with it.

Tits and ass!
Had the bingo-bongos done.
Suddenly I'm getting Nash'nal tours!
Tits and ass won't get you jobs,
Unless they're yours!

So the actress is singing & wiggling, the 75 students and 2 male teachers are whooping it up, and the 3 female teachers all went into cardiac arrest. "We're going to have to explain this to all their parents!"

I'm sure, of course, you can guess what song was sung, repeatedly and with great gusto, by 75 little heathens on the ride home to NC the next morning.

Oh, and as far as I know, nobody's parents complained. In fact, my mom took me to see the movie version when it came out a few years later!

Friday, February 7, 2014

The Insurance People Are Nosy Idiots

So, I've had a problem with eczema/psoraisis for most of my life. Had an appointment with Dr B today and mentioned to him that it has now started appearing around my eyes, which really bothers me. (one of my biggest fears is going blind. If I can't see to read, just kill me) He emailed in a Rx for a lotion that is ok to use on my face.

10 minutes after he sent the Rx in, the pharmacy called. Apparently there is some new thing with insurance companies, and if a cream or lotion is prescribed they want the patient to tell them what it is for. WTF? So I said, perfectly seriously, that I was going to spread it on crackers and serve it for appetizers at dinner tonight. There was a dead silence for about a minute, and then the pharmacist exploded into laughter. "Best answer I've heard yet!"

I mean, seriously. It's a LOTION. What do they think I'm going to do with it?

Sorry about the griping post, but I have to be me, and this was too dumb to keep to myself.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

February Goals, update 1

Well, I made a start on laundry mountain. Washed & dried several loads, but didn't get as far as putting them away properly. Sigh. Baby steps...

I filled the trash can Sunday and rolled it out to the curb for the Monday pickup. So of course we got a snow/ice storm. They hadn't come to pick it up by the time I was leaving for work. However, the considerate West Buechel snowplow drivers had blocked every drive (and consequently every trash can) on the block with their customary wall of slush. Not only did I dig out my driveway, I cleared the trash can to make it easier for the sanitation guys. Who never showed up.

We got more ice & snow over the last 2 days. I chipped the can open a couple of times to add to it. Today, in a moment of optimism, I salted the base of the can while I was out salting the driveway. Note: I am the only person on my street who has done anything like this.

They picked the trash up today. I heard the truck when I was putting on my shoes for work. I also heard the grunts and curses as they had to chip cans loose up and down the block...until they got to my house. Then I heard a knock on the front door. I opened it to find the three guys from the trash truck on my porch. They were so tickled that I had dug my can out and salted around it that they actually parked the truck and came to thank me!

It's the little things in life...

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Good Memories

Instead of my usual griping, I thought I'd try thinking about good things in my life. Here's a childhood memory for your consideration:

My dad spent most of my life working in the restaurant business. In my younger years, he was often the manager/main cook at steak houses & various family dining places. Which meant poor Daddy had to wear a collared shirt & tie and polished loafers to cook in. (the last restaurant, where he spent 25 years as shift manager/head cook, was a casual place where tennis shoes & t-shirts were acceptable. Boy, was he happy!)

Back to the shoes. We didn't have a budget that allowed for multiple pairs of shoes for anyone in the house, so Dad's shoes got quite a workout. At least once a week, during his rare downtime, Dad would get out the polishing kit, spread out some newspaper, and shine his shoes. I would watch, fascinated, as a pair of grungly looking shoes would turn into something sleek and shiny that looked brand new in his hands.

I got up one Sunday morning, full of piss & vinegar, ready to raise hell. Mom asked me to keep quiet a bit longer. Daddy had come home late the night before and told her he had to go back on what was supposed to be his day off because a cook quit and they couldn't get anyone else in. He'd been working crazy shifts all week and needed any rest he could get.

Well, poop. I was about 8-9 years old. Not known for being a particularly quiet age, right? Mom didn't have time to play with me because she was frantically doing a load of laundry so Dad would have clean clothes for work. This was before the days of mega-cable, so there was little on TV to interest a kid on Sunday morning. We were supposed to go to the library later in the day, so I didn't have much to read.

Then it hit me...Daddy hadn't polished his shoes yet! If Mom was going to let him sleep in, he wouldn't have time to do it before he left for work. I'd watched him do it enough times that I was pretty sure I could do it too. And it was a quiet job! So, left to my own devices, I spread newspaper out under the dining table (as long as I was being quiet & out of the way, why not work in my own little fort?), got the polishing kit out of the cabinet, grabbed the shoes, and went to work.

Mom called out once to see where I was. I said "in my fort!" and that was good enough for her. She knew I wasn't the kind of kid to hide out and drink bleach or do something majorly stupid. Daddy got up and grumbled his way around the house, getting ready for work. He growled something about his shoes and I heard Mom say "Oh, no, I forgot about those. Who's going to be looking at your feet anyway?"

Dad growled a little louder. "Don't care how they look right now. WHERE ARE THEY?!?"

Ulp. It's showtime! "I've got them, Daddy."


Mom lifted the edge of the tablecloth to reveal me. I silently passed the shoes out to them, hoping I'd done a good enough job.

" What the...." Silence. Uh-oh. The tablecloth lifted again and my dad peered in at me. "Boy (his nickname for me), get out here."

I crawled out. Both of my parents were staring at Dad's shoes in astonishment. "Did you do this."

*swallow* "Y-y-y-yes, sir."

"I'll be dipped!" Daddy rarely swore. "Thank you. Did a real nice job on those! Looks like I'd done it myself!" Then he hugged me.

Whew! I wasn't in trouble! Mom asked me how I knew what to do and I told her that I always watched Daddy do it, so I just did what I'd seen him do...only in my fort instead of on the table. Then I saw the look of panic in her eyes and heard my dad snicker. I realized she was wondering what kind of unholy mess I'd probably created, and quickly said that I'd put newspaper down first. Daddy kissed us both goodbye and told Mom not to be hard on me if I'd made a mess. He left, Mom heaved a sigh and knelt down to see what kind of damage I'd done. Imagine her surprise to discover that the worst of the mess was on me!(and more easily washable) "Wait a minute, and I'll clean it up, Mommy."

Just like my dad, I closed the tin of polish and made sure the lid was tight. I folded the buffer rags and tucked everything into the kit. I carefully folded the paper so no polish got on the carpet or furniture and took everything to the kitchen. The polish kit went back in the cabinet, the paper went in the trash, and my mom almost cried. "That was a very sweet thing for you to do for your daddy. And cleaning it up was a sweet thing to do for me. If you'll go take a quick bath, I think we might have time to get some ice cream before we go to the library."

And we did! (Baskin Robbins coffee in a sugar cone- my favorite at the time. Yes, I was an odd child)

For some time after that, polishing Daddy's shoes every week became my job. I don't know why I enjoyed it so much, but I always liked doing it. And Daddy would always look at my finished handiwork and tell me it looked as good as if he'd done it himself...