Tuesday, July 31, 2012

I've got mad stats!

I've got stats! I didn't realize that I could see how much my blog has been viewed until I randomly started clicking on buttons and found the above. I even have people from other countries looking at my drivel amazing stories!! How cool is that?!?!? I feel so special and sparkly and almost famous. This really made my day. I'm so happy.

I'd love to hear where my lovely readers are from. If you read this post, would you comment to me and tell me where you are? I don't want your actual address (unless you want me to show up on your doorstep asking for a beer), a state would be fine. Come on, make my day. Tell me where you are. Pretty please

Monday, July 30, 2012

Putting the kibbash on my kidlet

When I was growing up I had a very strict mother. We called her Little Hitler. I sent her birthday cards on Hitler's birthday. I gave her a pin that looked like a swastica. She was reeeeeaaaallllllyyyy strict. But I admired her when I got older. It takes a lot of patience and intestinal fortitude to be so strict.

Now that I have kids of my own, I "get" it even more. I think that kids respect rules even if they act like they don't like them. I have rules...a few. I tried to come up with a chore chart so my kids would somewhat be a contributing member of the household society but the chore chart was quickly forgotten when something better came up. I had chores as a kid. I can't remember what they were but I'm sure I had them.The chores I give my kids are easy. Stuff like vacuum or dust or pick up around the house. Nothing hard.

Manchild has never had kids before marrying me (nor has he been married) so he doesn't know that it takes about a million reminders to kids before they do what they're supposed to do. He gets really bent out of shape when my kids don't do what he tells them to do. Recently, he gave my youngest kidlet a list of things to do and she made the fatal mistake of not doing one of them. She did the other three things he told her to do but not the last one. That really set him off and he grounded her. He neglected to tell me that he had done so, so I made plans with her to do something without knowing that he told her she couldn't do it.

I'm faced with a dilemma. I don't know whether to respect his wishes (because to me, it was far fetched), or whether to go ahead and take her to do what we had planned - which is something I wanted to do by the way. I agree that she should quit being a bubblehead and do what's asked of her but I also know that 12-13 year old kids are airheads. It's hard for them to stay on track. It's a phase.

I ended up taking her but only after she and the Man hashed things out. She told him that she had done everything on her list but the one thing he yelled at her about. She also pointed out that while she had a weekly list of things to do, she never saw him help out around the house. I gave a silent cheer because it's true - I waited one year for him to help me do something. He never got around to it so I ended up doing it myself. Yes, she was a bit sassy pointing out that fact but I thought it was a good observation.

Long story short, Manchild admitted that he didn't want to get her in trouble, that he lost his temper with her. I told him that until he had a child that he had raised from day one, he wouldn't understand how it is. Since he's been a step-dad for a whopping 3 years, he's got a learning curve for sure. I'm just glad that my kidlet is easy going and is willing to help me train him. I don't know if I'm a sap - I probably am but I figure 3 out of 4 isn't bad for a bubblehead. She'll get her wits about her eventually and I'm sure she'll clear her lists with no problem.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Mean Creep-os

My sweet little kidlet got a life lesson the other day. She learned that some people are just mean old creeps - not a lesson I wanted her to have to learn so early in life. Her car was parked on a street and some jerk went down that street, hitting cars with a brick. Her car got dented and had a chunk of paint chipped off and she was off the charts upset about it. I would have been, too! Later she found out that there were about 6 other cars on the street that had the same thing happen. That doesn't make it any better but at least she wasn't singled out.

I experienced mean creeps when my home got burglarized and when someone scratched my car all the way down both sides of it. I hated whoever it was that did that. It took me a long time to get back to my people loving self. I'm forever changed though, and am a bit wary of something else happening thanks to those jerks.

A friend told me the story of a group of young boys that she encountered who were standing around a bucket with a lid, just laughing their heads off. There was a thumping sound coming from the bucket and when the lid was raised, she saw a frog with a bloody head. Those rotten boys had filled the bucket almost to the top with water, placed the frog inside and put the lid on it. The thumping sound was the frog trying to jump up for air to avoid drowning. It had hit the lid so many times trying to save it's own life, it's head was bloodied. The boys thought it was hilarious. I almost cried just hearing the story because I felt so badly for that poor frog and I wasn't even witness to the crime!

What makes people do stupid, bad, mean, horrible stuff?!? What is fun about slowly torturing an innocent frog? What is fun about ruining other people's property? How can the people that do those kinds of things live with themselves? This is just a personal observation, but it seems like guys do more stuff like that than girls do. So what is it about guys that makes them so destructive? Testosterone? Balls? Lack of brains? All I know is I never, ever have the desire to tear something up, torture helpless animals, deface property, fight, spit, slam dance, be overly obsessive about something, brag about "doing" someone,  or call my friends names like douche bag or scrote.

I can't prove that a guy is the one who went down that street throwing bricks at cars but I bet you a dollar it wasn't a girl. I'd bet it was a pimply faced, hormone ravaged young punk with too much time on his hands and not enough parental supervision. And yes, I blame the parents as much as I do the kid. Too many parents are too lazy to teach their kids right from wrong and our society is filled with immoral children who will probably grow up to be immoral adults. But that's another soap box I could stand on on another day. I'll just finish by saying that I'm sorry my kidlet had to find out about the schmucks of the world. I hope karma rises up and kicks their rotten asses and teaches them a good lesson. Mean creep-os!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Poor Mummy

I've written before about what a lil' pistol my Mom is. She's 93 pounds of pure spunk. Lately she's had some strange health stuff going on and to make sure everything is OK, she's going to have a small surgery. What she's having done isn't major, she'll be out of the hospital within a day or two and she should be fine. But you wouldn't know that if you were to poke around in my head and listen to my frantic, freaked out, alarmist thoughts.

I can't even bear to think about my Mom not being here on planet earth. I can't talk about it without getting really upset. So the thought of her having surgery just about sends me into orbit. I know she'll be knocked out and won't feel a thing but I wish so badly that it could be me getting sliced on rather than her. I don't want her to hurt one little bit.

I watched her nurse try to start an IV which was a failure and it pissed me off. I wanted to drop kick that nurse and put her in ICU for having to poke my Mummy a second time. Mummie's arms are teeny weeny and her veins are so tiny, they're like a baby's. Why couldn't they poke mine? They're nice and fat and juicy (my arms and my veins).

See how my hand and arm are so much bigger than hers? Look at all those juicy veins I have! You can't even see hers! And that wicked nurse used a regular people sized needle on her rather than a preemie baby sized needle. Another reason I should drop kick her!

The hospital fashions being offered these days are OK...for her. A size small gown will go around her about 4 times so I don't have to worry about her being cold. And the hospital she's in has a nifty blanket warmer so she'll be nice and toasty.

I was visiting with her before her procedure and her spirits were high (which made me feel better). We were laughing about how big her gown was on her and how small she looked in her hospital bed when the transport dude showed up with a wheelchair to take her to the surgery suite. The funny thing about it is that the chair wasn't a regular sized wheelchair. It was a super wide, super sized wheelchair which was probably for 400 pound men, not 93 pound ladies. We all got a good chuckle when she sat down in the chair because she just about vanished. Even the transporter dude laughed.

I'm sort of glad the gentleman showed up with such a huge chair because it helped break the tension. Hours later I got a call telling me that everything went wonderfully and that Mummy was happily snoring away and doing fine. Rather than worrying about IVs in her arm or the procedure she had, I think I'll laugh at the sight of her riding in the monster wheelchair. I swear, she looked just like the picture above - or maybe she looked a little smaller. Either way, we laughed at it a lot. I'm so glad everything is going to be OK. I need my Mom to stick around for another 200 years.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Man Periods

For as big and scary and boomy sounding as Manchild is, sometimes he's just that...a child. He gets into funks that no one can drag him out of, which just drives me batty. He can't tell me what's wrong - just that he's in a funk. I do everything I can to cheer him up but it's a waste of my time. I've learned to leave the scene when he's on his "period."

Yes, I believe that men have periods. Not in the literal sense but certainly in the pissy, moody PMS sense. In fact, I think that when they're on their periods they're way worse than we are. Big friggin' babies. There's no reasoning with a man whose on his period; he'll argue with you to the point of exhaustion. And I firmly believe that they try to boast about how much tougher their day was compared to yours. You could have delivered 75 babies, put out a fire in a burning building, driven 75 hours and cooked 2,000 meals and he'd still say his day was harder than yours (meaning you should coddle him).

Just the other day, my Mr. Wonderful was in a funk and he yelled at my youngest kidlet for something so stupid it was crazy. He made her cry which instantly pissed me off. She's a super sweet kid and would never do something to intentionally make him mad so for him to yell at her enough to make her cry - well, I was ready to drop kick his ass. It's OK to be in a bad mood but it's not OK to take it out on innocent bystanders.

My girls and walked a wide path around Manchild that evening. We didn't want his wrath. I didn't want to have to kick his ass into next week in front of the kids. I'm not sure if he even realized that we all scattered whenever he was nearby and frankly, I don't care. I sure hope today is better because I'm getting sick and tired of his period. I won't take it. No way, no how. Period!


Are those flames shooting outta her back?

Since I've gotten my bionic back (actually, long before that, too) I've been trying to find a comfortable chair to use for work. I make a point to get up and walk around often, and work standing up when I can but since I work on a computer, I have to sit down. Besides, standing is one of the things that's hard for me to do. I've got to have a good chair, people!

My first chair was so-so. It wasn't horrible but it wasn't very good, either. I squirmed every minute or so and never could get comfortable. But other people around me had chairs that were much worse so I didn't complain much. As my back situation got worse, I started trying more and more chairs in an attempt to get comfortable. I even tried one of those exercise ball thingys. My abs were getting in shape but my spine was on fire. 

The company I work for takes great care of us, so the body mechanic lady came up and measured this and that and later, brought me a fancy schmancy robo-chair. It went up and down, side to side, it had lumbar support and armrests that went up and down, a back that would go forwards and backwards and it did everything but give me a massage! It might give me one but I haven't figured out how to turn it on just yet.

I didn't realize that a degree in chair-ology was necessary but let me tell ya, I've got a PhD now. My chair is so awesome I think I'll live in it for the rest of my life. Instead of driving my cool car, I'll just roll around in my chair. I'll learn to mow my yard while I sit in my chair. I'll make my chair fit in my car. I am one with my chair. I love it. I don't have to worry about my back bursting into flames any more. Now all I have to figure out is if I can sit in my awesome chair when I take a shower, and when I sleep and when I go bungee jumping and..........

Monday, July 23, 2012

Strollers? Really?

I live in a pretty nice neighborhood. There aren't million dollar houses but all of the homes are in the 2,000+ square foot range and are well maintained. Lexus' abound as well as BMW's and large SUVs - are you getting the picture? Decent, middle class people live around me (hey, I didn't say I was one!!) and I would think that to have achieved the station life that they are in, they would have to be reasonably intelligent with decent paying jobs. So I was floored when I was driving down the street one day and I saw a couple walking with their dog in a stroller! It was a doggie stroller! I didn't know that such things were even made!

I went to my favorite source for pictures - the all mighty Google, and guess what? I saw multiple pages of doggie stroller images. What the cat-hair is that all about??? Since when did dogs need strollers? Isn't that why they have 4 legs? Obesity is rampant in America and I'm sure this includes dogs, too. Pushing a pup around in a stroller probably isn't helping anything. One of these days, the good old U S of A is going to be full of fat, lazy lard ass dogs who won't lift a paw to help their masters.

Picture this...a hunter heads out in the early morning to his favorite duck hunting spot. Mist is rising off of a lovely pond and ducks are flying low in graceful formations, ready to touch down. The hunter quietly readies his rifle and fires off a shot, bringing down a plump duck. Once the duck hits the water the hunter instructs his duck fetching dog to retrieve the prize that he has just shot. The dog gets it's foot tripped up in the bedding within that's in it's stroller and he falls to the ground. The hunter struggles to help the lard ass pup get upright, then gets a small dinghy for the dog to ride in so that the duck can be retrieved. The dog struggles to start the small 5 horse power motor but finally succeeds and putts off to get the duck. Once dog and duck have returned to the hunter he struggles to lift the dog out of the dinghy and back into it's stroller. The hunter ties up the boat so it won't drift away then slowly pushes the dog in the stroller back to his vehicle. The remainder of the ducks on the pond are startled by the squeaking of the stroller wheels and they fly away, never to return. The hunter will have to find another place to hunt. I bet if sportsmen ever read this, they'd all have heart attacks! Then, small dinghy sales and doggy stroller sales will probably drop off dramatically.

I think that dogs are mans best friend and that the two shall walk side by side. Not a human pushing a silly little stroller with a fat dog laying down inside of it. I won't push my pup around in a stroller just like she won't push me. But that's just my opinion.

Friday, July 20, 2012

I need to go to the doctor. The lady doctor. UGH, I hate going to the lady doctor. No one likes exposing their tidbits to someone they see once a year, and the actual exam is practically medieval but I seem to have a particularly hard time with the whole ordeal. It's not that I'm overly modest because I'm not - I can stroll through the house completely nekkie without any problem, I just hate being in such a vulnerable position.

My doc is thoughtful enough to provide soft cotton gowns rather than the dreaded paper "gown" but they're usually still too short and small for my liking. I'm a master at wrapping myself so tightly with the back of the gown tucked so far underneath my backside, a coin could be bounced off of my flabby belly. I'm in a friggin' skin tight cocoon! My muscles are usually so tense, they start quivering. And it never, ever fails...as soon as I hear the doctor retrieving my file from the little holder beside the door of the exam room, I absolutely have to take a nervous tinkle. I could be severely dehydrated to the point of near death and when the doc is outside of my room, I need to take a nervous tinkle! I swear, they should put potties in the exam rooms because I'm sure this happens to other women.

Once the doctor is in the exam room, there's the usual polite talk, all the while the dark cloud of the internal exam is hovering. Sweat usually flows from my armpits and my feet turn really cold and clammy. When the dreaded time arrives and I'm instructed to scoot to the end of the table it takes me a while because I'm so tightly wound up in my gown I can't move.

Now, let me digress for a moment; did you ever notice that for this particular exam, you have to get your hiney so far at the end of the table, you can feel your butt cheeks drape over the edge? Even if you have a tiny hiney, your butt cheeks are going to hang over the edge! That's demoralizing enough but then you have to put your feet in those horrible stirrups which, why do they call them stirrups anyway? Are you riding a horse? NO! Riding a horse would be enjoyable and putting your feet in those dang things are NOT enjoyable, so they should call them something like feet clamps or mortification mounts or something a little more descriptive.

So there I shall be, lying on a teensy weensy narrow hard table with my butt cheeks hanging off of the end and my feet in the mortification mounts and the doc will say the words that I've dreaded for 48 years..."open up your knees." Nuh uh, it's not going to happen without a fight. Every time I have to have this exam I'm sure that there's a pre-warning on my file that notifies the staff that I'm a tough case.

See this thing? It's commonly called the "jaws of life." It's used to pry things open that have been hopelessly compressed together like smashed up cars (or my knees). These things have an absurd amount of torque like 10 million pounds per square inch and open just about anything. Except my knees at a gynecological exam. My knees are clamped so tightly together the bones begin to fuse together! And when I'm instructed to relax and spread I usually press more tightly together and begin whimpering and almost crying. Most times the doctor will gently place her hand on one of my knees and try to show me the direction she wants it to move and that's about the time I leave my mind. It's like what you hear described when someone is horribly abused and they leave the present moment and find their "happy place." I have to leave my head.

My doctor is a very gentle, kind, understanding woman and she's very good about warning before she makes any move but it doesn't matter. I'm still majorly freaked out and jump to the ceiling as soon as she touches me. Once they pry my fingernails out of the ceiling tiles, things usually proceed fairly quickly. I'm out of my head and the doctor is poking around my tidbits and the nurse is probably over in the corner laughing quietly at my absurdity.

I know that this type of exam is supposed to be performed once a year. You notice that I said "supposed to be" because that ain't the case with me people. I'm doing good if I go in once every 3 years. That's because that's how long it takes me to recover and be discharged from the mental hospital. I'm going to be a good girl though, and make an appointment because it's only been 2.5 years since I went in and I'm a responsible girl. I'll make sure to trim my fingernails so I don't get stuck hanging from the ceiling. I'll shave my legs and make sure my toenails are polished because maybe, the doctor will look at that rather than poking around my tidbits.

I know I need to set a good example for my daughters and teach them about taking care of themselves so that's why I will NOT take them to this appointment. I don't want them to see me wrapped up in my gown cocoon, dangling from the ceiling tiles because I jumped when the doctor touched me. I don't want them to hear me whimper and cry and I certainly don't want them to see me when I leave my head and try to find my happy place. I want to snivel and shake and quiver and have my knees fuse together all by myself. I don't have to worry about the doctor because she has all kinds of privacy laws to worry about and I know she won't tell anyone what a nut job I am. Thanks HIPAA!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Pretty Poochie

When I was a kid my family had a Dalmation. We named her Screwey because she was goofy. She'd eat the stickers that she got in her feet. She'd stick her snout under water in an attempt to catch crawdads. She'd roll in dead armadillo shells right after I had bathed her. Speaking of bathing Screwey, let me tell ya...she was one pampered pooch. I'd bathe her then put perfume on her and I always painted her toenails. Just like me, she never went without painted toenails.

My new pooch, Lucille is quickly learning the life of beauty. I've already given her 2 baths and her nails have been 2 different colors so far. Hey, she's a girl dog - she needs painted nails!

Look at those pretty toes! She knows she's pretty, too. She prances more when her toenails are red. Now she needs a blinged out collar in a hot pink because if she's going to live in a house with 2 girl cats and 3 girls she needs to look like a lady!

Viva la femme! (That's supposed to say something like Long Live Ladies - only I don't speak or write French)

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

What would you do for love?

Love is a fickle thing. You can love someone and sorta hate them at the same time. You'll do crazy stupid things for the one you love. Love can make you happy and it can make you sad. Sometimes, you're blinded by it. I had a conversation with a girlfriend recently and she claimed to love a guy even though he didn't seem to act so lovingly towards her. In my mind, the guy treats her like dirt and does things that I would never stand for but because she loves him, she puts up with the things he does. That got me to thinking...'how far would I go for love?'

Thanks to Google images for this awesome shot.
 Even though I divorced my first husband, I loved him...still do. He's the father of our 2 wonderful girls. He's a great dad, was a great provider, wasn't mean or abusive and was loyal - we just didn't fit together properly. I stayed in the marriage longer than I should have but I got out before I hated him and we are friends to this day. So for love, I stayed in a relationship that made me crazy and sad and made me do things to myself that I don't think I would ever do now.

Being married to Manchild also makes me employ crazy love. He says things that practically makes my skin melt off they're so bad but I put up with it because I love him. He's sort of old school in his way of thinking; he lets me cook and clean without helping but I put up with it because I love him. The other me, the one outside of my body and not in the relationship, tells me to kick his ass into shape and make him be more fair or else get the hell out but I don't listen to that girl.

Thanks to Awkward Family Photos for this great picture!
The love I have for my girls is something else entirely. I'd kill for them. If someone hurt them, I'd probably get myself killed in the process of trying to kill the offender but I wouldn't care. NO ONE messes with my babies. I'd fight a bear to save them. I'd skin an alligator alive to save them. I'd fight off a gang of angry she-male disco queens to save them. I'd be a total bad ass.

The other night I got a text from Mr. Man as I was on my way home. He basically placed his order for the local taco joint for me to pick up but he made one fatal mistake. He didn't say "please" or "thank you" anything nice. He simply texted 'I'll take two tacos and a bean burrito.' I have to admit, that flew all over me. I pretended not to see that stupid text and when I got home, he was all puffed up because I didn't bring him dinner. I replied (with a lot of snark) that I was not a dang ol' short order cook. I told him that he was my king but that I was his princess and should be treated as such. I demanded respect and good manners from him. I love him but I won't let him dis me.

My friend who loves the shit bag guy who in my unrequested opinion treats her with less respect than a dog, is hurt by her man's actions and yet, she keeps returning to him. I posed the following question to her in an attempt to get her to stand up for herself;

Suzie Q, how did your daddy treat your mama?

Like a queen. He was the best and always respected her and treated her wonderfully.

So is that the kind of guy you'd like to have?


And how does douche bag Mr. Absentee treat you? Like your daddy treated your mama?

No, he treats me in the totally opposite way.

If you saw such a good role model in your daddy, and that's how you'd like to be treated, then why are you with Mr. X?

Because I love him.

See, I told you love makes you do crazy stupid shit. I can't make my girlfriend change her mind any more than I can walk away from Manchild because he does stuff that bothers me. Sometimes, it's the crazy quirks that are the most endearing. What would you do for love?

Thanks to Awkward Family Photos for this great picture!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Why I hate the DMV

Going to the DMV is a rite experienced by everyone who drives. As you get older, it gets easier because you can renew your drivers license online (you're just getting older and uglier so what's the difference) and I've used that option a lot. When I got married a few years ago I had to go to the DMV in person (gasp) to show my face and marriage license. It was relatively painless and I only had to wait in line for about 30 minutes.

Thanks to Uncle Sam, a new policy has been instated whereby you have to show proof of citizenship of the good old U S of A so you have to provide a birth certificate or passport. Now Uncle Sam is something of a jokester because that little bit of information is left out of the license renewal reminder. So you might get two visits to the DMV for the price of one!

I went on a Friday at 10:00 am, thinking about how smart I was for going early but when I arrived at my local office, I was confronted with a waiting room that seats about 100 (which was full) and a line that snaked out of the building, down the sidewalk and around the side of the building. In Texas in July, it's about 90+ outside at 10:00 in the morning so waiting in the heat wasn't very appealing. I decided to drive to the next town over and try that DMV. I figured that the line would be shorter since the town was pretty small. WRONG The line was out the door and down the sidewalk at that location, too.

Thanks Google images for the picture!

About the time I had resigned myself to the fact that I'd be waiting in the heat for a couple of hours, Mr. Wonderful called me and informed me that I did not have to renew my license in the county that I lived in. I could do it anywhere! He also told me that the DMV in the little town by our house in the woods isn't usually busy and that I should try there. That's just what I did. I threw some clothes in the car, loaded up the pooch and took off towards Redneckville. An hour later I was rolling up to the DMV ready to tackle the crowds. The following events were amazing to me...

There were approximately 7 cars in the parking lot (including the highway patrol trooper cars). I went inside the office and there were 6 people in the waiting room! SIX!!! I asked the friendly attendant where the number slip machine was so that I could get my place in line and I was told that I just needed to wait. They didn't have a number machine! I walked towards the chairs so I could sit while I waited and the nice attendant informed me that I simply needed to wait in line in front of the counter. I was so flustered at the simplicity of the whole deal that I immediately began asking every person "in line" in the entire waiting room if I was cutting in front of them. I was assured that no, they were waiting for other things and I only had one person in front of me. ONE!!!! Exactly 3 minutes later, I was in front of another friendly attendant signing papers and having my picture taken.

Now I must admit, I've never encountered a surly attendant at the DMV in all my thousands of years of going there so I'm not saying that they're mean. But the attendants at the DMV in Redneckville were the nicest people ever! I wanted to run out and buy them a latte or something! It was the easiest, quickest process I've ever had. I catch myself talking down Redneckville because there isn't anywhere good to eat and nowhere to shop and nothing to do for entertainment but let me tell ya, they've got the best dang DMV in the whole state of Texas! I'm never going anywhere else from now on. Thanks to the friendly, efficient DMV peeps of Redneckville, I love ya!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Just driving along then....

It's Friday the 13th, one of my favorite "holidays." I usually have good luck on Friday the 13th.

This morning driving in to work, I stopped at a light and just as I took off I heard a loud buzzing sound. The kind of buzzing that a large, flesh eating bug makes. I could hear it flitting around and buzzing and I could almost hear it's large pincers and biting jaws snapping, too.

I am sort of a bug wimp. I don't like them. I can handle teeny weeny baby grasshoppers that are smaller than a quarter because their killer fangs aren't developed yet. I can handle spiders that are the size of the head of a pin who don't have developed killer fangs. I can tolerate crickets a little bit. I can even stay still when a butterfly lands on me. I didn't used to be able to do that but I can now because I'm bug-brave. But when a bug gets into the car all bets are off.

I don't think that I could remain calm while driving while there was a bug in the car even if I wore something like this:

Just hearing a bug buzz around my car is cause for extreme terror. Since I was in heavy traffic at rush hour I couldn't speed across 4 lanes of traffic to exit and vacate the car as quickly as possible. I had to remain calm and fight my way to the correct lane so I could turn off of the road and exit the car (screaming and slapping at any bug that might be within 200 miles of me). I managed to pull into a parking lot without crashing and I got of my car in record time. I opened all of the doors and took a cautious look at the interior - all the while waiting for a fatal bite on my jugular vein. When I noticed that there wasn't any blood gushing from my body, and I noticed that a swarm of killer insects weren't flying out directly at me I began to relax a little bit.

You can bet yer britches that I made absolutely sure there weren't any insects in my vehicle. I even looked under the seats! I'm sure I looked really cute bending over to see under the seat with my hiney shining for everyone driving by to see. Hey, I probably made every one's day, showing them that beautiful view!

I finally decided that nothing was going to kill me on the rest of my drive in, so I rolled up the windows and closed all of the doors and took off again. For the remaining 2 miles to my office I drove with one eye on the road and the other eye on the rear view mirror - looking for a rogue bug. Every strange sound I heard made my skin crawl and set off a new round of leg swiping and frantic look around. I was never so relieved to get to my office. I'm safe for now, until I have to get back into the car again to drive home. I can't decide whether to ride home with all of the windows open or not because you never know; that bug might have hidden really well so it could plot my demise while I was at work. It's probably cleaning it's pincers and sharpening it's fangs as I write this. Wish me luck. Oh, by the way...if the bug is still in the car and if it kills me while I'm driving home, I want blue flowers at my funeral.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The Lawn Affair

I was going to begin this post by saying that I'm an oddball but that's already been established so I'll just say that one of my odd quirks is going to be the death of me I think. I like to mow grass. On occasion, I've mown my yard and seen that the neighbor's yard is tall so I just kept on going and mowed theirs too. It's instant gratification to see a messy yard transformed into a thing of beauty row by row.

When I first got divorced, the only lawnmower that I had was one of those old school push whirly thingies. Non motorized is what I'm trying to say. I thought I was being so "green" by using muscle power instead of burning fossil fuels. My yard had St. Augustine grass which is pretty sturdy stuff. It's also the kind of stuff that doesn't make mowing with a muscle powered mower easy. In fact, it kicked my ass. It kicked it really badly. My ex took pity on me and gave me the gas powered mower that we had had for 10 years. It made things much, much easier.

I've been happily using that mower for 5 years now and when it runs, it still does a good job. The problem is that I think it's getting tired. It won't start unless it's cranked about a dozen times. Once started, it will run but the throttle slows bit by bit until it's putting so slowly it doesn't cut the grass effectively. I can hold the (broken) throttle handle to keep the speed up but then it makes mowing in a straight line a bit difficult. The process of starting the thing is what is killing me.

If you've ever pulled the crank cord on a lawn mower, you know that it can be a bit strenuous. If the engine is slow to respond and you have to crank it 10-12 times it can wear you plumb out. The fact that I'm still recovering from major back surgery doesn't help either. I can usually be seen huffing and puffing, cranking and cussing, sweating and swearing and begging the almighty to have pity on me and make the damn thing start. I've even resorted to asking strapping young lads to help me start it. It's getting worse and worse and I'm to the point where I'm ready to put it out to pasture (pardon the pun).

I told Mr. Man after a particularly stressful round of cranking that I hated that lawn mower and I was going to dip into my savings and buy myself one that wouldn't kill me and he insisted that he could fix it. I gently told him that I didn't have until infinity to wait for him to fix it - that I needed to get my yard mowed soon and he assured me that he'd come to my rescue. Four days later I was still waiting and the grass was waist high! OK, not really waist high, but it was tall. When I asked him again to help me, he pulled his usual stunt that he uses when he doesn't want to do something...he worked on it for about 15 minutes then got frustrated and threw the tools on the ground and walked away. My yard continued to steadily grow taller.

I must admit that he did get the thing running (a few days later) and I finally got to mow. It was hard because the grass was so tall, so I spent the evening storming around, mumbling to myself because I was so pissed that if the mower had been fixed sooner, it would not have been so hard for me to mow. The next time I went to cut the grass guess what? I couldn't get the mower started. I cranked until I was about to pass out. I cranked until my back was screaming in pain. You can ask my family in Arkansas; they heard my back screaming all the way in Little Rock. And I was angry all over again.

The other day I pulled the mower out of the garage and prepared myself to fight it in an attempt to get it started. It didn't. When Manchild got home and I had fed him a nice dinner I asked him to start it for me so I could mow. He cranked on it 5-6 times and got mad and stormed off. I stood in the driveway looking at the machine that I had come to hate and I did what any sane, normal adult woman would do. I started to cry.

I carried my crying, snotty, sweaty self over to my neighbors house and after crying out a tantrum, I managed to ask them if I could borrow their mower. Guess what? They loaned me theirs and it started on the first crank. I mowed my yard without having to hold the broken throttle handle. At 9:30 pm I had finally finished and I returned the mower. I apologised for having a temper tantrum/pity party on their doorstep and thanked them for loaning me their machine then I cried again because I was angry at my crummy tired mower, and I was angry at my man for not helping me more. My neighbor was very sweet and told me that that's what neighbors/friends were for; to cry with and help one another.

Today, I'm really embarrassed that I cried on my neighbor's doorstep over a stupid lawn mower. I could have asked them calmly and without snot and tears but they got "lucky" enough to catch me at my worst. Mr. Man knows I'm upset about something because I'm not speaking to him. He should have read my mind and known that he let me down and I was angry at him for not helping more. I'll forgive him some day in a thousand years but for now, I'm still a little miffed. I'm going out on the dang ol' interwebs and I'm going to research lawn mowers and I'm going to drive my cool sports car to wherever and purchase a lawn mower that has a throttle handle that works and that will start on the first crank. And when I do, the whole entire neighborhood will hear me singing and mowing. Heck, I might just mow all the lawns on my street. And when Mr. Man drives up and sees me mowing, I'm going to stick my tounge out at him. And keep on mowing.

I might get something like one of these babies:

P.S. Thanks Google for the images!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Meet Lucille

She wandered up one day out of the blue, skinny as can be and with a hurt foot. We didn’t want her to stay because we already had more than we could take care of. But she looked so pitiful, we had to at least give her a drink of water. She drank like she hadn’t had any liquid for days and she looked so grateful that we had taken pity on her, we couldn’t help but want to help her. Due to the poor state of her body, we figured she hadn’t eaten in days, but we didn’t want to encourage her to stick around so we left our generosity at water and nothing else. She had a mean wound on her foot and she hobbled pitifully around but she didn’t complain about it. She was simply grateful for the water we had given her.

The next day we returned home to find her there, waiting for us. She looked at us with soulful eyes, somewhat begging but not being too obvious about it. We couldn’t ignore the fact that she was still hungry. We waited a while but our consciences took over and we broke down and made the drive into town to purchase food so she could have a good meal - then be on her way. But she didn’t leave. She waited patiently as we cleaned a bowl and poured her food. She didn’t try to rush us, she was too polite for that. Once we had provided her with food, she ate like it was going to be her last meal. She inhaled her meal in record time and our hearts went out to her for being so hungry.

Due to the lack of food and drink, she was weak and could barely remain standing so we bathed her and put medicine on her injured foot and gave her a place to sleep, and she seemed to be very grateful for such a small act of kindness. The next day we left and wondered as we were driving off if she’d be there when we returned.

Driving in the front gate, there was no sign of her. It wasn’t until I had parked the car and gotten out that I saw her sitting there, just waiting. She looked so trusting as if I would never do anything mean to her and she seemed happy to see me. The first thing I did was to make sure she had something cool to drink - with lots of ice because it was hot outside and she had been waiting in the heat all day for someone to return. She was never pushy and greedy and she seemed to be extremely happy for whatever kindness I extended towards her. Her foot was red and swollen and obviously painful but she let me doctor it without a single whimper. Again, she seemed grateful that I took the time to notice her and give her some kind of kindness.

I fed her again and again she ate as if it were her last meal. I felt saddened by the fact that she appeared to have such a hard life, and I had it so good compared to her. I was almost embarrassed by her gratitude. I mean, how could I not help her? I would hope that someone would help me if I were in the same situation. That’s what people do...help each other.

I took a closer look at her and noticed that she had sores all over her pitiful body. ‘What had happened to this girl’ I wondered. Who would be so heartless as to put her out, cast off as useless refuge? Upon closer inspection, I noticed fleas in her hair. I looked more closely at the sad state of her health and again was overwhelmed with sadness. I decided right then and there and it was going to be my mission to nurse her back to health and try to make her happy.

Since she didn’t seem to know her name, I decided to call her Lucille after the name of B.B. King’s famous guitar. It was black and white and so was she. I told Manchild later that I had already fallen in love with her and that I had given her a name. He chuckled and took It in stride. I guess in his profession, he’s used to seeing lots of people and things down on their luck and he has to harden his heart a little to avoid being depressed all of the time. But I’m not that way.

I made the mistake of telling kidlet #2 about her and of course, instantly she wanted me to introduce them. I wasn’t sure if that was a good idea because if I did, that would be the end of it. Lucille would be living with us forever. On the other hand, I couldn’t condemn Lucille to certain death, either. I wondered how I was going to afford having another mouth to feed but in my heart of hearts, I knew I’d find a way to make it work, I had to. I already loved her and she had stolen my heart in under an hour.

I firmly believe that we are put on this earth to nurture and love so who was I to play God? I was simply following my destiny. Life isn’t simple and it isn’t always easy but this was one decision that came very easily. I had to help her.

Meet my new love, Lucille.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Holy labotomy part 5 - the wrap up

So, I've been a good girl for the last 2 1/2  days and I've done everything that my doctor ordered me to do for my 3 day EEG. I've stayed in front of a camera over 90% of my time, I've marked on a sheet of paper whenever I got up and moved around so they'd know that I wasn't having a siezure - I was just fixing a ham sandwich and I've tried my level best to act "normal" in front of the cameras. And I am now officially completely insane. I have lived through the stages of denial, anger, self pity, anger, sadness, craziness, acceptance, anger and now - hopefulness since I only have about 8 hours till I can get these dang stinkin' electrodes off of my head.

During my trying times I tried to devise ways to break the monotony. I've read, watched TV, surfed the interwebs, played 75,000 games of solitaire and mah jong and even made a video or two. I had all this shit put on my head on Thursday afternoon. Today as I write this, it's Sunday morning. As of last night, I was to the point where I was crying because I was so crazy-bored-lonely. My youngest kidlet went to her Dad's. My oldest kidlet had to go to work. My Manchild went to the little house in the woods. So it was just me and my 3 cats in the house.

My medical instructions informed me that I could imbibe so by Saturday night I had decided that I would cop a buzz. Maybe then I could come up with something amusing to do with myself. I sort of did.

I have a whole closet devoted to Halloween. Decorations, costumes, props...you get the idea. I realized that some poor schmuck was going to have to watch a zillion hours of boring video of me sitting on the couch so I decided to entertain them as well. I snuck some hats next to the couch and periodically, I'd put one on. I figured I'd "test" the technician to see if they were really watching. Here are some of my favorite looks:

Viva la Mexico!

Your royal hiney-ness


I'm so hap hap happy!!!
 Here are my videos:

I wrote notes backwards on paper and held them up to the camera so that the technician would have something to read besides watching me sit like a lump on a log. I sang little ditties after my rum punch had kicked in so that the technician would have a little entertainment. My kidlet did a few dance moves in front of the camera and her friend made silly faces. Let's just say that hopefully, the EEG technician will never have seen such an amusing study video. I wonder if my doc will mention it to me. I hope I can remember to ask her when I see her 3 weeks from now.
My constant companions

 As you can see, I officially made it to looney land. I'd like to thank the Academy, my parents, my children and my constant companions - Schwayze and Pork Chop and Ruby (not shown). I'd like to thank my bestie Mel for coming over and saving me from my own insanity and for watching Paranormal Activities 2 AND 3, after which I jumped at every single sound in the house once the lights were out. I'd like to thank the makers of rum and Diet Dr. Pepper for removing me from reality. I'd like to thank whoever created wash rags and liquid soap so that I may indulge in a tepid sponge bath. I'd like to thank the makers of Ramen soup so that I could keep my strength up. I'd like to thank and give an award to the people that invented TV and computers - a lot. I'm sure I haven't mentioned everyone/everything that helped me through this quest and I'm sorry to those that I missed. I'm going to take my award and put it on the mantle. Then, I'm going to take a shower (FINALLY!!!) and shave my legs and get in my car and drive away very, very quickly and I'm going to go to a very crowded, noisy place and revel in my freedom. And I swear not to put my hiney on my sofa for at least a week.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Holy labotomy part 4

Picture borrowed from Google images
I'm a reasonable girl. I'm polite and I usually follow most of the directions I'm given but when I'm confined to one spot for days and someone tells me that I can't have a cigarette - I'm afraid I'm just going to have to break that rule. To reiterate what I was instructed to do and not do, one of the rules told me not to smoke because the electrodes on my head were glued down with flammable glue and my head could go up in flames. I don't want my head to burn up but I panicked at the thought of not being able to relieve my tension in the normal way.

As soon as the warning came out of the technicians mouth, I was trying to figure out a way to be able to prove that warning wrong. I came up with the brilliant idea to stand in front of a fan so that the wind would blow the heat/fire away from me. That way, any flammable fumes that might be wafting from my scalp would be blown away and I wouldn't catch on fire. Guess what? My plan worked. I've smoked 1/2 a pack of ciggies and haven't erupted in a fiery ball of death yet.

Since I was told that I basically wouldn't have any life for a few days I also started trying to figure out a way to break the monotony. A girl can only watch so much TV and read so many books. Surfing the world wide interwebs even gets boring after a while. I asked my technician if since she was ruining my life by warning me not to smoke, did that mean I had to give up my weekend beer also and lo and behold, I was told that I could imbibe. Thank gosh for that! It was one small victory.

I don't think I'll push the warning of not bathing. I'll take a sponge bath and be ok. I'll even make myself stay in one spot for 3 days and space my allotted 20 minutes of exercise out over multiple little roaming ventures. I'll faithfully make entries in my activity diary so that when the doc looks at all the little squiggly lines on my EEG, she'll know that the increase in squiggles just means that I got up and headed for the fridge for another beer. At 6 am.

I must admit, I'm pretty curious to see if anything odd shows up from this test. It doesn't seem right that I careen into walls as I'm walking down the hall. And it doesn't seem right that my eyes jump wildly when I look from left to right or right to left and that I feel like I'm having mini heart attacks. Maybe it's because my little brother hit me in the head with a dinner plate sized rock when we were playing"pebble toss" and I got a concussion. Or maybe it's because of the time I hyperventilated and fell out on the concrete and hit my head. And got another concussion. Or maybe it's because I'm an oddball. Who knows.

I have to tell ya, any time someone tells you that you can't do something, it's going to be the thing that you want to do the most. Even if it's something gross - you'll want to do it. I promise. I'm confined to my bed or my sofa and I want to clean house and mow the yard (in 100+ degree heat) and bathe the cat (which I've never done, but want to do now), and change the oil in the lawnmower, and clean the gutters and re-program the computer that's in another room, and defrost the freezer and re-fluff the insulation in the attic! I want to do all of that and more! Because I can't. I wonder what I'll do first once I get all of this shit off of my head and the cameras go away. Probably sit on the sofa and watch TV.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Holy lobotomy part 3

Thank GAWD that there are really smart scientists out there who can figure out how to mix atoms and molecules and stuff and make...medicine. Medicine in turn, makes abnormal people more...normal. Or at least it's supposed to.

In my quest to get my jerking, jumping, heart pounding, passing out sensation, dizzy eyes to behave, it was thought that maybe the reason I was feeling so goofy was because I was suffering from complicated migraines. They don't make your head hurt, you just have really goofy things happen to you. I got jumpy eyes and sometimes my speech went crazy and I stumbled around. I also found out that I could take medication which helped keep the migraines at bay. That worked for a good long while until recently.

One day I felt the familiar symptoms of a migraine coming on. My eyes started jumping around and I was dizzy but I knew what to do. I took my medication like usual, but the symptoms did not go away. My symptoms lasted for 6 weeks before I broke down and went to the doctor. I'm kind of stubborn that way.

I found a nice new neurologist who seems to know her stuff pretty well. She's following all of the steps to figure out what's wrong in my noggin. I was ordered to have a MRI which I did. When the nurse called me to tell me that my results were in, I asked her if there was a brain in my head - or did they see only air and bubbles. She gave a teensy weensy chuckle but didn't take the bait. I asked the doc the same question when I saw her, but she didn't even give a teensy weensy little chuckle. Not even a smile. I'm going to have to work on her to get her to loosen up some.

My latest venture as a test subject dummy is having 25 leads glued to my head for 3 days. Amazing forms of technology are recording every little fire of my neurons. I'm being watched by 2 cameras nonstop. Now I know how lab rats feel. So here's how it's going down:

A technician showed up at my house with about 3,000 pounds of stuff. She proceeded to set up a night vision camera at the foot of my bed so I could be observed sleeping, snoring, flopping around (probably farting), having the cat sleep on my head and all of my other nocturnal activities. Another camera was set up in a room of my choosing where I would spend the majority of my time. I chose the TV room. Then the real fun began - the gluing of the electrodes.

The technician measured 25 spots all over my noggin, then marked those spots with a grease pencil (which felt like a snaggely fingernail on my scalp), then she scrubbed each spot with alcohol or something that felt cold. When she opened up the glue that was to hold the electrodes, I was worried that if any type of spark within 100 miles of my house happened, we were going to be blown sky high. That stuff smelled so toxic I was scared!

I was warned not to smoke because the glue is really flammable so theoretically, my head could go up in flames if I fired up. This was going to be a big problem. Let's review my situation; I'm tethered by the scalp to a satchel full of hardware. I can only stay in two places in my home for 90% of the time. I have to write in a diary every time I do anything besides sleep or sit on the couch like a lump on a log. I can't shower or bathe for 3 days and I can't do anything that will get me sweaty. I have to take it easy and do basically nothing for 3 days. And I can't smoke???? Yeah, NO. I was going to find a way around that rule!

Here are some of the instructions I was given: Do not touch the electrodes, do not scratch the electrode sites, avoid static electricity activities like dusting, vacuuming, removing clothes from the dryer, do not chew gum, go to bed 3 hours later than usual and wake up at normal time, stay in front of the camera @ least 90% of the time, exercise 20 minutes per day. Here's the only piece of "good" news; the directions say that I can engage in "romantic liasons" (those aren't the exact words but I'm trying to be delicate) but to please do so off-camera. Do ya think I'm going to take advantage of my "good news"??????

So as you can tell, my life is basically over for 3 days. On the off chance that the world changes polarity and that my husband is blinded so that he  can't see me, and his senses are completely off so that he can't smell me, I guess we could have s-e-x. Because I'm pretty dang hawt right now!

Just sharing that picture makes me cringe. It was taken at 5:45 am and as you might notice, I don't look very happy. And I want a cigarette.

To be continued...

Monday, July 2, 2012

Holy labotomy part 2

Imagine walking along, minding your own business and having everything in your field of vision begin to jump around. That's what happened to me. One minute I was feeling fine and the next minute, my sight was swimmy, my heart pounded and I felt like I was on the verge of passing out. I never lost consciousness but I felt like it was iminent. This symptom happened over and over and over again for days, then weeks.

Since my heart pounded each time my vision went wacky, I thought maybe I was having heart attacks. So I went to the general doctor to figure out what kind of doctor I should see. Since I described my symptoms of the heart pounding I was referred to a heart doctor. The heart doctor gave me a handy dandy heart monitor to wear for a few days and I was to punch a button each time I felt dizzy. I did. Lots of times. And when I went back for the results of the test guess what? No heart issues. Clean and clear as a whistle.

I visited other doctors and finally ended up at a neuro opthomalagist's office. I went through so many strange tests, I felt like a test monkey. On acid. In outer space. In one test, a technician watched me while a warm stream of air was gently blown into my ear. No fallout - no symptoms - nothing. Then the technician blew cold air gently into my ear. All hell broke loose. I immediately began to throw up. How odd is that? Warm air in the ear - smiles and tickles. Cold air in the ear - instant vomitosis! In another test I was placed in a million dollar cigar tube that had a small chair inside. The door to the tube was closed and I was in pitch black darkness. I couldn't see my hand in front of my face! The chair that I was sitting on began to spin. But oddly enough, I didn't know which way I was spinning. The chair would whir and I'd feel gentle movement then it would stop, then it would begin again. And I had no idea if I was going left or right! The tube had a night vision camera so they could watch me and my crazy eyes to see if I fell over or whatever and I guess that test couldn't tell them anything either. There were other odd tests which required lots of trips to their offices and I was beginning to get really frustrated and depressed. I knew something was wrong but really smart doctors and technicians with all of their tests and vomit inducing puffs of air couldn't figure out what.

I was at a doctors visit one day and I had decided that it was going to be my last visit. I was fed up with the lack of results and was beginning to think that maybe I was imagining things. I've always had a horrid fear of being a hypochondriac and this journey was confirming my fears that maybe I was one of "them". The doctor was explaining that the most recent round of tests had proven nothing and I was taking my frustrations out on him when all of a sudden he just froze. He looked very intently at me and told me that he had just seen something. He saw my eyes jump around!!! He had a name for it! He confirmed that I was NOT crazy! If I could have jumped up and done a happy dance, I would have. I had a name for my problem.

The next thing to figure out was what to do about it. There wasn't a magic cure to make it go away so what to do? The doc wanted me to return for a few more tests (on a different day of course) so we could figure a course of treatment. During the time between the day he saw my eyes do the happy dance and the day that I returned for yet another test I had an amazing revelation. I remembered the horrible migraine from years ago and I remembered that the neurologist called it a "complicated" migraine. That meant that odd things happened when I had one and that sometimes, I could have a migraine and it wouldn't hurt - I'd just have squirrelly things occur. When I returned to the doctor, I mentioned that little gem of information and he had an "aha" moment. It was decided that I could use a medication that kept migraines at bay and I shouldn't have any more problems. And that worked. For a while.

Part tres forthcoming......

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Holy Labotomy!

Sanity warning: The next few posts will be about my medical odyssey into madness. If you're adverse to anything medical - don't read this!

I've always considered myself something of a oddball and I like it. I am very blessed with a loving family, a good job, a nice home, good luck and fairly somewhat almost decent health. I've had a fairly uneventful health-life but the things I have had are sorta odd.

My brain issues all started with migraines when I was in my 30s. No biggie, ladies have migraines all the time so when I had them I didn't consider it anything too odd. But one migraine put me on my keester and I couldn't get up. It got bad enough that I went to the ER in an attempt to get some relief. The nice doctors and nurses juiced me up with some really good drugs and sent me home. I felt better but my head still felt...off.

I woke up the next day and my head still hurt pretty badly. And I was dizzy and confused. The day after that was worse so I went to a neurologist in the hopes of getting a professional bonk on the head to make everything clear up. While at the doctor's office, I found out that my head hurt much worse than I wanted to admit. When Dr. Labotomy shined his little penlight into my eyes, I almost threw up on him. He had me stand up with my arms outstretched in front of me with my eyes closed. I was to simply stand there with my arms even with one another. I figured 'what an easy/stupid thing to do' but when I opened my eyes, one arm was raised and the other was 1/2 way down. He did a bunch of other tests, then told my Mom to take me home to rest for 8 or 9 days. Oh, and he gave her a prescription for some really, really strong medicine that totally knocked me out. He wanted me to stay awake only long enough to eat and take care of bodily functions. The goal was to totally knock my brain out (like a coma) and let it re-set itself.

I guess it worked because after all that time, my head didn't hurt anymore. The only problem is that in retrospect, I can't really remember anything from a day or two prior to my initial headache until time about 6 weeks later. I don't know where the time went. I guess I functioned ok - I just can't remember anything.

The years rolled by with an occasional migraine here and there but nothing really noteworthy. One day I woke up and when I viewed the world, everything was jumping around and I felt like I was going to pass out. What in the cat-hair was that about??? It was hard to drive and see and function. I figured I had better get it checked out considering I was worried I was having a heart attack or something. And so my medical mystery began.
To be continued.....