Pages

May 25, 2020

you can numb it, but it still functions . . . well, that sounds worse than intended

I wasn't going to post on Memorial Day, but this might take you two days to read it, and I finished it, so why not . . . 

Google photos tells me the middle finger incident took place Monday, Sept. 23rd. So, it's been awhile.  I always intended to share the drama, but more pressing topics cropped up, I guess.  True, right?  Because you 're regularly enthralled by the exciting content shared here.  Me:  envisioning a group nod.

I only had one super sweet, beautiful baby to sit for last school year on Mondays.  His parents regularly make comments to me like:  "We feel like we won the lottery when we found you."  Keepers.  

I started watching baby Cutie-Pie in mid September when he was 3 months old, so on this Monday his family was still 'new-ish' to my crazy life.  The dad was coming to pick Cutie-Pie up around 4:30.  I started making dinner and warming up Cutie's bottle anticipating that he would wake up.  I didn't want to hand over a hungry baby.

This photo is unrelated, but it makes me laugh
and it is from the days when shopping was less
restrictive.  I do NOT typically drag babies
with me while shopping . . they hog the cart.
For dinner, I had decided to cook sweet potatoes.  I eat the same things A LOT- I feel like this is dictated by celiac, and combined with my quest to try to eat healthy, I grabbed giant sweet potatoes at the store that week.  This was back when masks weren't worn and I puttered around the store thinking about what I might make.  

I think I last made sweet potatoes when I used to make my own baby food.  So, forever ago.

Have you ever tried to cut a sweet potato?  Holy crap, an impossible mission.  I wanted to cut them in smaller chunks so they would boil faster.  

Over the summer Ed's then-girlfriend was selling Cutco knives.  Ed asked me if she could come and give me her presentation as practice.  I was not supposed to feel compelled to order anything.  I said, Sure, and I DO need knives, so maybe I will place an order.

Order, I did.  My new knives were weeks old and I loved them.  Understand the knives that I registered for when we got married were all broken and the cheap replacements were, well, cheap.  Cutting stuff was always a challenge.  You could, in fact, call our home dull.  Pun intended.  

I grabbed the biggest, brand-new Cutco knife available and (this is important), I hurried to cut the sweet potatoes.  Kids, don't try this at home.  

Little sliver of skin.  Almost made
my thumb look like a puppet.
Let's pause while I admit that I had already struggled adjusting to using insanely sharp weaponry to slice up the veggies and egg for my daily salad.  Over Labor Day weekend, I accidentally sliced the very tip of my thumb almost completely off.  So, that sucked.  I packed many bandages  the next weekend when we flew to Annapolis with the 4 youngest to watch Lad play water polo.  My recovery efforts were not enough and the little sliver eventually fell off.

So, here I am - rushing . . .  with a sharp knife.  Baby is starting to wake up and I need to get these taters boiling so dinner can be ready by the time I have to drive Curly to dancing.  (pausing here to remember the driving I once did and how I DO not know if I can start that shit up again.  How I hate driving to dancing). 

Done peeling, I needed to get them into a chunk.  I placed one on a cutting board and I'll be damned, the dang thing would NOT cut.  I leaned over my hand - putting all my body weight on the hand holding the knife.  

That's when the knife rolled off of the not-so-sweet potato.  The knife turned on it's side, and sorta ended up with my hand under it like I was holding it in my palm, but on the way there it had ever-so-barely-hardly TOUCHED my middle finger.  IT CUT MY MIDDLE FINGER DEEP.  "Efff" heard round the world, think back to 9/23/19 - I bet you heard it- wherever you were. 

Blood.  Lots of it.  You might recall, I am not good with blood, but passing out was NOT an option.  "Oh, hi Cutie's dad, my mom passed out . . . "  

I ran toward the sink and hollered for Reg and Curly who were the only ones home.  Reg dug out the band-aids and opened a few and I said, "We're going to count to three and then I am going to move the now red paper towel and we are gonna put the band-aids on."   Curly might have been holding the baby, or just reassuring me verbally - no recollection.  

Reg gasped at the gash but managed to help get the band-aids on - they instantly turned red.  We added some other absorbent stuff like paper towels and wrapped that up with medical tape (perks of marrying a PT - I know you're jealous) so I looked like a cartoon character with an over-sized, pulsating, bandaged appendage.  

I told Reg to call Coach at work.  Coach was like, "Crap" -but he was NOT gonna come home and take me to the ER.  Mondays are his busy day, yadda, yadda, yadda.

Me:  "Kids, the dad will be here soon.  You are NOT to tell him a thing about me wielding a knife I couldn't handle and my clear need for stitches.  No need to clue him into the fact that he left his kid with a lunatic.  We are gonna play this cool.  Damn it." 

The dad arrived to find me sitting on the couch calmly and perhaps pale, giving Cutie his bottle and Reg and Curly waving hello, refusing to open their mouths and breathing a word about how I was about to bleed out.  (slight exaggeration)

The next morning I did tell Cutie's mom the story- sort of obvious with a splint on, etc.  She chuckled because the dad worried that he had arrived late to pick up Cutie since a moment after he left I passed him driving (insert Wizard of Oz music here from the bike riding scene) the great-white, 12 seater van as I barreled along for the ER.  Smooth, right?

In the ER, I made many phone calls to try to find a ride to get Curly to dancing.  A recent college grad who moved home to do grad school couldn't drive her.  My mom, who likes to behave like she is 90, preferred I find someone else.  "The construction on Route 83, oh . . ."  My sister, Ann, couldn't help out.  

When the triage nurse called me back, I tried to tell her that I might have exaggerated my need for medical treatment.  I was squeamish after all.  Maybe I just hadn't looked at it closely.  She unbandaged it and a stream of blood hit her between the eyes (OK not exactly, but still a mess) and she was all:  "OK then, you definitely need stitches.  You aren't going anywhere."  

It is written somewhere that an ER needs to make you wait forever unless you are in fact dying, so I told her my dilemma.  I needed to get a ride for Curly to dancing, or I was going to have to leave.  Her:  "Ha, looks like your daughter is missing dancing tonight."

Me:  (internally, because I didn't want to be admitted to the psych ward)  "OK, I guess you know nothing about Irish dancing, and how busy the fall dancing season is.  My kid cannot miss dancing and if her little brother has to put her on his back and jog there, then that is how she will get there, damn it."

Tank was at golf practice and wasn't willing to abandon golf for Curly's dancing.

In the little ER room - too long!
I called my Mom back and assured her that Curly knew the way and that while there was CRAZY ASS construction, Curly can also navigate a secret route.  She may have only been 11, but she is aware.  My Mom agreed to do it.  

Please note:  My mom drives a jaguar with a built in big-screen GPS system that she refuses to learn how to use.  And - she has been to dancing before AND, it is almost a straight shot from home.  

This is already so long, sorry.  I will leave out the fun details about how I was left in a room forever, suspected they took another guy ahead of me, how a girl had to come in and 'CLEAN' my wound, and how I raised holy hell about them possibly taking another guy ahead of me.  There was also a dilemma:  did I want a numbing shot.  I think the doc talked me out of it - I don't even remember, and I am still surprised that I survived the whole ordeal.  Because I got 5 fricking stitches.  At 48, I HAD NEVER  GOTTEN STITCHES, HELLO!

A first time for everything, sadly.
Later, Coach, my husband NOT my caretaker, hid a bunch of the knives from me and I raised holy hell and made him give them back.  "You are not my DAD!"  Duh.  He gave them back but begged me to stop using them.

I went to my doctor to get the stitches out a few weeks later -the day before we flew to New York to see Lad play water polo - remember I ended up with pink eye?  Batting 1,000. 

Anyway, the doc was like:  "Can I ask you, were these Cutco knives?"  Me:  YES (insert story of son's girlfriend and how we now tease Ed about whether or not all of his girlfriends will someday try to kill me by selling me sharp shit).  

The doctor said she had just agreed to buy some knives because her friend's son had given her a presentation.  She couldn't count how many times she or her husband had cut themselves.  She is married to an ER doctor.  These are smart people, right?  I happily told Coach, "This is not just me."  

I may or may not have been holding up my newly un-stitched middle finger when I hollered this at him.  

*sidenote - I have not gotten the feeling back in my damaged middle finger, but let's face it - that finger still serves its main function as needed . . . this can only mean that I have a fresh crazy-neighbor Mary Ann story to share. 

May 22, 2020

It's not a toomah! or is it?

Have you heard that Trump has decided to take Oxymacmillion Dectracide?  OK, not the proper spelling, but I am guessing you have heard of his decision to self-prescribe this RX.

My own personal stash of
 Hydroxycholoroqine (real spelling!)
Um, I have some of that RX in a bottle in my house.  I am NOT currently taking it.  I also cannot pronounce it, or spell it.  

I want to thank Trump for taking this med because whenever I go back to the doc and they ask me "But have you tried Oxymacmillion Dectracide?" I will be able to intelligently say, "Oh, is that the shit that Trump started taking to avoid covid?  Yeah, I already tried that and it didn't help me."  

Backing up the bus a bit, a hippie-looking rheumatologist (cut and paste job because that is a bitch to spell) I saw a few years ago wondered if I might have Lupus.  Hair loss, exhaustion, swollen joints (pst . . . this can also be from the wonderful world of celiac,.  Blood work:  hang on, another autoimmune disease might be lurking, since I have celiac I am susceptible).  He had me try Trump's new drug of choice:  Oxymacmillion Dectracide.  It did nothing.  


Poor little swollen pinkie.
I told you back in the fall about my pinkies having big puffy knuckles.  They felt broken.  I saw a new doc:  Dr. Run-late.  She said I had cysts.  Lupus?  

She prescribed Oxymacmillion Dectracide. (me nodding, not realizing I had taken it before from Hippie doc till the pharmacist pointed it out).  I took it for a few weeks because it was a higher dose and maybe it would help.  Then I said, forget it.  Unlike Trump, I don't want to take stuff I don't need.

Dr. Run-late suggested having the cysts removed.  There were x-rays and MRIs and MRIs with contrast.  I probably glow in the dark now.  

Rings were cut off of my fingers.  Sadly.  

There was a doc visit when I brought along a baby I was sitting for and Coach left work to meet me there and they announced, "Oh, Dr. Run-late is running too far behind to see you.  You can come back in a few hours."  What?  Who does that?  

Eventually Dr. Run-late suggested surgery to remove cysts or just draining them with a very large needle.  We opted for the needle, but Coach explained 'me' to the doc.  "She can't do big needles."

Doc Run-late said, no prob.  She would partially sedate me.  This was all about two weeks before Christmas.  Pop some pills, have a friend drive you, etc.

Becky, my other babysitting friend, was good enough to drive me - neither of us had tots to watch.  I urged her to run errands and come back.  "Dr. Run-late does not follow a schedule."  

Becky got her nails done, came back, and found me super sleepy and beyond pissed off.  I was a combo of Sleepy and Grumpy dwarfs, but taller.  I explained to Becky . . . "I braced myself for the gi-normous needle.  They jabbed it in there good and hard.  Nothing."  

FYI if Becky and I chose not to social distance and she was sitting in my study with me, she would be saying 'That's what she said' and then cackling, but alas - I am alone.  Not that I have ever written a post while hanging out with Becky, but isn't it heartwarming to know your friends think of you even when you are't within 6 feet?

Dr. Run-late:  "Oh, this is not a cyst.  This must be a tumor."  (totally might be off on the terminology here because I was all doped up and this was in December).  Basically she thought it was liquid and it isn't.  Needle = useless.

Now, just trying to forget 'bout it.  Coach and I both looked at each other though at home:  

"But she took all those pictures, contrast, rings cut off?  W.T.F?"

Did I mention the timing of all of this?  Right before Christmas when it is also birthday season over here.  I slept all afternoon - on my day off instead of getting shit done!  People, I love a good nap, but ARE YOU KIDDING?

So, don't worry about me while my pinkies sometimes creak with pain while I type away at these posts.  Meanwhile, I secretly enjoy one more nonsensical aspect of our president, who is taking something that has proven NOT to prevent covid 19.  

May he inexplicably develop tumors on his pinkies the size of golf balls (not at all what the meds do, but who takes something for kicks?)

I have another finger story for you, but it involves the middle, the boss, the swear finger.  Totally different story line.  I think you'll enjoy it.  Shall we say next week, or are you too busy trying to identify a closet you have yet to organize during our at-home time?  

Have a good weekend, and hope you survive the anticipation of another finger dilemma over here, which I think I will follow closely with the story of Curly's haircut . . . from last year.  Get excited.    


May 20, 2020

guilty as charged

Let's start with a positive, shall we:  the good thing about having everyone home is that there are MANY sets of hands to put away the groceries.

Also, I can always find a person with time on his/her hands to jog down to the basement to retrieve something from the fridge, or look for something in the fridge.  I JUST praised the shit out of Reg for always hopping up to do my fridge search and/or grab duty.  

Parenting tip:  did you know kids will do more things faster and more frequently when they get the shit praised out of them?  Please do not ask me how many years it took me to figure that little nugget out.  

Weeks, as in maybe a month ago, I froze one morning in my kitchen.  "Wait, did I buy pork chops at Costco, or did I decide not to?"  

I used to make this awesome sweet and sour pork recipe in my crockpot, but the pork always came out tough.  Upon doing a little research, I learned that  it is sometimes best to tenderize the pork (now see, I am tossing around lingo and I am not even sure I am using it right . . . that is how long ago I looked into this recipe-fix that I needed).  I think I ended up just cooking the pork a bit on each side BEFORE dicing it up to put in the crockpot.  

Anywho, I could not recall if my masked-self felt adventurous enough to buy the chops or to pass on them.  Did I pass on them because I remembered that Kraft no longer makes the sweet and sour sauce I used in the recipe, and who wants to complicate life right now and go to 3 stores to find a sauce that would work?

So, I did what I normally do, "Reg, go look in the basement fridge and see if I bought pork chops?"  Meanwhile I hollered to all available awake people:  Does anyone remember putting pork chops down in the basement fridge or somewhere else?

Reg returned from the depths:  NOPE.  NO RANDOM PACK OF MEAT.  

No one else chimed in with the "Oh, I saw pork chops" response, so I decided that I had NOT in fact bought them.  I was secretly breathing a sigh of relief because it had been over a week since my Costco trip and I was worried that if I had bought them they would be too old to cook, so maybe I just liked Reg's response.  I was off the hook.  

The other day someone complained about a smell in the basement fridge that they couldn't identify.  Coach was down there and he smelled something 'off', but he didn't find it.  (Please don't ask me if I know whether or not he even bothered to look, because I don't want to think about this).

I thought nothing of it.  

Is there a correlation between low brain function and quarantine?  Asking for a friend.

Then when I was down in this-here backup fridge that I rarely have to poke around in anymore because I am surrounded by bodies, I found the smell.  

I grabbed a casserole dish that looked black on the inside, mumbled "Dumbasses" and hauled it upstairs.  

I thought the black food was a delicious Pyrex of cheesy chicken that we forgot was down there.  I opened it and found it was fish.  The dark color fooled me.  It was not orange colored cheesy chicken covered in black mold, and it was not expired.  

Did I venture back down to the basement at that point?  No.  I stuck the fish Pyrex container in the kitchen fridge and went about my day.   

Go ahead, point out the fact that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree and a real adult would have gone back down there and searched for the issue.   Guilty as charged.
This is the part of my kitchen nearest the mudroom.  Note the entrance to the mudroom mere steps away?  These are shoes, a sweatshirt - or two, slippers, a duffel bag, athletic slides, and workout bands dropped in the corner of my kitchen.  These people can live with a rotting meat smell and not decide to investigate. 

AND, I must confess: 
I kicked my slippers out of the way before I snapped the photo. 
Dear God, I am ONE OF THEM.  

This morning my minions were still sleeping when I needed skim milk.  I ventured down the stairs all by myself and there in the middle of the fridge in plain sight was an orange Costco bag full of rotting pork chops.  As in:  SERIOUSLY ROTTING.  I didn't get close enough to look at the date, so I don't know how old it was but I did notice that it cost $17.  

Ouch.  

How.  Could.  I.  Have.  Been.  So.  Stupid?  

The smell combined with the current cluttered status of the house (read current as:  constant) almost had me texting Coach:  TIME TO MOVE.



May 18, 2020

learning curve, as we approach 80


When we started with all the kids home trying to e-learn, the internet whined and moaned and refused to keep up with the demand.  We tried a few things.  Coach bought a booster thing (not the correct term, so don't rush to your nearest Best Buy curb and ask them for a booster thing).  Only Lad thought it helped.  That may or may not have (initially left off the 'not' and it read like may or may have . . . hee hee) had something to do with the fact that this purchase was his suggestion.

Then we bought a different thing that was supposed to help the signal - more intense and pricey at $200 (of course) than the original booster - more like a bammer.  Again, no clue.  The box said it would take 15 minutes to install.  Coach translated that by gauging his skill set and assumed it would take him 2 hrs.  Close.  Only 2.5 hours.  And, it was only marginally better than the $25 booster.

And I still had kids bitching about the internet failing and them losing documents, etc.  I was struggling to find my happy place, and using the internet to find said happy place in funny blog posts or YouTube videos was only complicating our USE INTERNET ONLY AS NECESSARY rule.

Next I called AT&T.  We could not upgrade, not available in our area.  I informed them that we do have running water in these here parts, so what the what?

Next I called Xfinity - they had a better stronger tower thing, and switching to Xfinity meant our phone bill would be cut in half and our internet woes would be a thing of the past.  Sign me up.  We got Xfinity and it seems our connections have improved.

Despite all of this, Ed still went into panic mode when he had to take a final exam.  He posted on my dry erase board that during the chaotic days of real life is utilized as a calendar.  Who needs a calendar now?  Not like we ever forget what day it is.  Err, well . . . anyway.  Ed posted a notice  alerting everyone about his test and requesting that they stay the ef off the internet.  He said it only froze twice for a millisecond.  And we all breathed a collective sigh of relief. 

Lad stood in the kitchen and grumbled that no one agreed to be quiet or stay off the internet one day during HIS final.  *Sigh* Me:  "Well, Ed made his testing preferences clear to us, you didn't."  How am I not walking around with a wine bottle and a very long straw at this point?  Riddle me that.

In other technologically-challenged news:  Coach decided to do a free trial of YouTube TV.  Note - I was busy sewing two rooms away in the dining room as if it was the year 1945.  Coach sat close to the TV with his laptop and fumbled around with connections and screens and such.  The kids sprawled out on the couches and shrugged at one another and motioned things in teen hand-gestures the equivalent to 'why is dad so dumb?'

Mini eventually drifted in and confided in me over the hum of my time-warp machine that Dad was pulling up YouTube but could not figure out how to get to YouTube TV.  "He is literally clicking on other people's channels, so he is watching clips of things other people like and he doesn't UNDERSTAND that this is not actual YouTube TV.  This is torture."

Well the next day he figured that out.  And all the teens stopped threatening to smother him in his sleep, which was nice.

I have no photos of kids eye-rolling, but here
 is a photo I stumbled upon while putting
 together my albums.  St. Joe, MI circa 2011.
 I love this pic of my boys.
Then the other night we watched an episode of the McMillions documentary thing.  We thought it was one feature length thing, because cluelessness is a thing in these here parts.  Coach was all:  "Oh, should we just watch the next McMillions episode?"  We voted yes.  He sat there.  I was putting photos in a photo album because I am all about my pandemic projects.

Mini almost died on the couch next to me because Coach did not understand that he had to hit play.  He thought after he selected it on our new, shiny, welcome-to-this-century YouTube TV that it would just start.  A minute later (after I completed 5 more photo album pages), he realized his ignorance and he hit play and Mini rolled her eyes and we all survived.  Barely.  Because what the hell are we to do if we cannot find something to watch.

May 15, 2020

saving Bird, never knowing what I will find: it's a way of life

A few weeks back I went down in the basement to find the bin of fabric that I have in the storage room.  Somehow I knew that I had the old puppet theater fabric.  

Mini came along.  We stood there and she started pointing.  I could not really include this in the pandemic quote post, because she was kind of speechless for a bit.   Just the pointing.  I thought she was pointing at a bin, and I was like:  

"No, it's in this bin.  I already pulled it down."

For some reason this reminds me of the scene from Airplane when the guy has the knife in his back and she starts dancing imitating his knife pointing movements.  Not at all the same, yet . . . 

"Big Bird" she finally said.

Not a great pic, but this is the Big Bird
 costume I made and if you look closely you
 can see the tiny ants having a party on his feathers.
most of my guys are stored in bins -
see Elmo here peering out of his bin?  Bird's
 body (in the background) is too big for
a bin.  His head piece is the
 part that was covered in ants -
 also not contained in a bin.
We had been finding stray ants in the study, which is above the storage room.  I followed her pointing and her Big Bird mumbling.  Swarms of ants were all over the top of the storage unit.  Like HUNDREDS.  

"Go get your father," I whimpered.  I don't do ants in the hundreds, if possible.  

People, it was unbelievable.  We dumped out a bin of out of season shoes that is stored in the storage room, and we shoved Big in there and took him outside and shook the hell out of him.  He may have lost a few feathers.  Then I sealed up the bin and left him on the porch for a few days, just to be sure.  

See how snug they are in their bin? 
The guys that come apart easily
enjoy an ant-free life in storage.
He survived.  I know you were worried.

There was no food down there, but I think these are the kinds of tiny ants that come up from underground after a rain.  No idea, but they have not been back since we sprayed and cleaned them all up.  

When we were pulling stuff off of the ant-infested, high shelf - there in the back corner was a pair of Mini's jeans, and underwear, and a shirt.  I was like "HUH?"  

Elmo saying "move over
guys, here I come."
"Mini, did you wet your pants from laughing with your girlfriends and then ditch them down in the basement on this high shelf?"  

These are the kinds of questions I am faced with as the mother of a girl that likes to laugh a lot with her friends.  From what I understand, there are worse things that teenage girls can be into besides laughing till they pee themselves, so I will take the occasional pee incident.  

I never tire of showcasing ole Bird.
Mini insisted that was not the case.  How do you not notice that a pair of your jeans are missing anyway?  Well, she does insist on living in the world's messiest room.  Things have been known to go missing, even AFTER she has insisted that I have, let's say -lost her basketball team uniform that she swears she put in the laundry.  Um, guess where it was?  Floor.Of.Room.  
The gang.  Can you tell it is after 2 am
here and I no longer know what
to do with myself?  I should
 probably just go to bed.  

Then I cracked the case.  Over Christmas break Mini had friends sleep over.  When Tank wanted to have friends over, he probably 'cleaned' up the basement before his buddies arrived by taking whatever clothes Mini left behind and chucking them up on the storage room shelf.  

These are the conditions I live in.  I just NEVER do know what I will find.  Anywhere.  It is slightly unnerving.  I cannot even blame the pandemic.  

May 13, 2020

when Zoom takes a backseat and other adventures

A few weeks ago, Coach and I had a Zoom conference with Lad's therapist, Chip.  When Lad is involved he figures out how to get us all on the same screen, etc. because apparently Lad's parents are as old as dirt.

This meeting was minus Lad because it was more of our last ditch effort to see if Chip felt the latest 'Lad stuff' warranted more of a response than what he was usually giving us.  

*Update:  certainly no picnic, but since exams ended Thursday May 7th and since his girlfriend broke up with him also Thursday, we are seeing a MUCH more approachable, slightly less disruptive Lad.  Not saying we aren't going to seek help for him, but we are breathing again.  Was this relationship with this girl toxic?  Or is stress not doable for him?  Jury is out.  This story is from the darker days.

This photo really could go with the last post, but I have no photo to go with this post and I thought you might find this entertaining.  In my last comment to Gigi, I described our fridge as a giant Jenga game.  I never know what is going to fall out when I try to get something out.  Keep in mind, I have another full fridge in the basement that I rarely look at because our home is overrun by minions and why they drive me crazy, there is NO reason for me to haul ass up and down the stairs so long as they live here and eat constantly.  I also have 2 fridge drawers that are in our snackbar/mini-island on the far side of the kitchen straddling the family room.  These drawers were ordered to keep adult beverages during parties and kids' after school snacks.  Could.Not.Get.By.Without.Them.  All this to say, this is only PART of our stash.
We were basically waving our arms on the roof of our house like you see those people trapped in flood waters, screaming:  "Now what, Chip?  Is THIS on your radar, cause we are thinking this requires more attention than what you are suggesting."

Coach raced in from the clinic just in time to jump into the conference- when it was over in an hour he would race back to work.  Thankfully his clinic is 7 minutes from our home.  Not sure if I have ever mentioned that - it sounds lovely, right?  

Well, in normal times when the health club attached to his clinic is open and he has freedom to use their bathroom and not pollute the air space in his one-bathroom clinic, he would almost never just zip home mid day.  He does not have a completely full caseload of patients so that helps.  Otherwise, I rarely benefit from his close proximity to home.  Not sure I count the 'let me use our plumbing' as a benefit either.  

Oh, the other unique thing about Coach working close to home is crossing paths with patients.  Coach has been treating in the same clinic for close to 18 years, I think.  Now when we run into one of his former patients, he fumbles around because he CANNOT introduce me.  He never remembers their names, just their ailments.  

It goes like this, "Oh, hi.  How's it going?  You haven't been in to see me for a while.  That must be a good thing.  Your back giving you any trouble?  No, better than ever?  *insert patient turning to me and asking me if I know what kind of a miracle worker I am married to*  Great, glad to hear it.  Take care."  

(we walk 3 steps away), "Sorry, he's such a great guy but damn if I can remember his name.  That was so awkward."  Me nodding, yep.  Used to it.

We had not really discussed where we were going to Zoom with Chip.  Only privacy in these here parts is in the shower.  It's like standing in a cornfield.  Ears everywhere.

Coach beckoned me to the garage.  He suggested we crawl into the backseat of the great white 12 seater van.  Funny- I had the same idea.  We connected with Chip - all 3 of us are Skype challenged and we didn't have Lad to set it up (I know I said Zoom, but Skype was our platform of choice, look at me sounding all business-world-ish . . . NOT).  It was dark in the car and we were wiggling around trying to get comfortable, and I dropped my pen and needed to find a fresh page in my notebook.  

Coach finally shared with Chip, "Um, not sure when the last time was that we were in the backseat of a car together in the dark, but that is where we are."  Chip laughed and asked us if we wanted some alone time and we could check back with him later.  

Nothing like a little laughter to reposition my 'WELL, THIS FUCKING SUCKS' mentality.


It did get me thinking, when was the last time we were in the backseat of a car?  

I think we spent the night in the back of my 2 door Plymouth Sundance in a parking lot at Notre Dame YEARS ago.  It was not a romantic rendezvous.  I cannot recall, but I think the place we were supposed to stay ended up not working out at the last minute.  Here I define 'spending the night' as-in we were young enough to not have even attempted to get some sleep until well after 2 am anyway, so it may have been more of a nap.  I think I was a bit stiff the next day.  Ah memories, young love, and just look at us now.

Back to our Skype session in our big old van that has 130,000 miles on it where Coach did NOT put the moves on me.  We were nearly finished meeting Chip and Lad decided to go fishing at a local pond, so he came out to the garage to get fishing poles and saw Coach and I sitting in the backseat of the van in front of the laptop.  "What're you guys doing?" he puzzled. 

Smooth as silk.  You know what else is smooth?  My joints as they bitched at me for climbing in and out of the backseat of our big-ass van.  




May 11, 2020

laughing at what I THOUGHT I heard Delilah say

My Dad turned 80 on Thursday, and thanks to social distancing I managed NOT  to strangle my sister, Ann with her up-tight to the Nth degree-ness.  Both of my sisters wear their hair VERY short and they have clearly not been able to get their hair cut.  

Long story, but we grew up with boy-length hair.  Mandated by Mom.  To me, the fact that my sisters still wear there hair in a fashion that won't upset Mom is telling.  Mom will only compliment my hair if it falls in the range that she deems short enough to be pretty.  Having had my hair on the longer side (for me, mind you) the last few years, I dare say she'll NEVER compliment my hair again.  
My folks on their driveway- neighbors stood across
the street. Family members did a honking parade
 and then gathered on the driveway from a distance.

Maybe my sisters just like their hair short.  Not criticizing short hair in general -some people look SO great with short hair.  My sisters don't really do much without Mom's approval though, so I feel their hair aligns with this 'pattern'.

I cannot have true, long hair - too thin.  It hangs.  BUT - I am wearing it longer than I have in forevah (only in part thanks to the pandemic) and with certain products and layers and stars aligning and such, I can occasionally have a good hair day.  I had to beg my chin not to drop at the state of my sisters' hair at my folks' house.  There must be something they can try?  

Forgive me for sounding petty, but there is history here.  I worked at my hair that day and my kids complimented it and not only did I not strangle my relations, but I flipped my hair around a couple, two, tree times.  (intentionally spelled it as 'tree')  Ah, it's the little things.  

My Dad's gift.  Little memories, or words that remind
us of him like 'spreadsheet' and 'grumpy' and
 'history buff.'  We gathered over 80 terms. selected
 the top 80, and Mini crafted them
onto a canvas as a keepsake.
We came up with our own gift for Dad and I think it turned out great.  It was funny and honest and unique but best of all.  Lad opted not to join the other kids and I, and that was just fine.  Coach was working.  

Earlier in the day on Thursday, I got to go for a walk with my good friend, Delilah.  We agreed not to embrace or hold hands or spit and it was nice out and we could keep far enough apart as we walked while catching up and that was awesome.  

Delilah called Thursday morning:  "Well, I don't know if I even told you about this, but I had implants a few months back.  One of them is really giving me some trouble.  I just called and they said I could be seen around 11:00.  I know we are supposed to walk at 11:00, but I want to see what you want to do.  Should I call you when I am done at the dentist?"

People, was I the only confused person?  Until Delilah said DENTIST I was like, "Huh?  Implants?"  Before I could tell her I would wait and walk after the dentist thing, I HAD to razz her.  

"Delilah, I thought for a minute there that you were trying to tell me that you had a boob job."

Delilah is a great friend, only in part because she laughs at all my jokes.  She has many other great qualities, like being an excellent listener.  

She has also accompanied me to the zoo and places when I had loads of babysitting kiddos. Remember when her flip-flop broke a nanosecond after we arrived at the zoo?  We went to customer relations and they stapled her flip-flop back together.   

Other than that day when I got to tease her all day about how I managed to get 6 million babies in the van and all of their gear and set up the heaviest, clumsiest quadruple stroller only to watch as her flipping flip-flop broke as we slowly maneuvered through the parking lot - well, other than that, she doesn't usually supply me with such easy material- I usually have to harvest material all on my own.  

So, I could NOT stop teasing her for the boob job I suspected for about 10 seconds that she actually had.  I mean, shit, I haven't laid eyes on her in forever, so anything is possible.  And, as anticipated, Delilah almost died laughing.  

She didn't even tell me until after our walk (where she wore actual athletic shoes with ties because we were exercising and flip flops were ban) when I told her to go out into the world and continue to flaunt her new perky boobs and I finally remembered to ask her if the dental implant thing was 'just food' as she suspected.  

NO, the damn implants fucking failed!  And how many different ways does that suck?  Poor Delilah.  And she knew I had lots to vent about, so she didn't even mention it on our walk- in part she couldn't because she was clearly enjoying it when I tried to tell people we passed on our walk that she had just had a boob job, NO I didn't do that.  I promise. 

Anyway, she will accept your commiserating in the comments below, and she will probably laugh hysterically at being mentioned in the comments.  If you want to be petty and comment about how 'really sad' you are that my two goofy sisters' hair looks frumpy, well that is accepted as well.

You heard me friends, Delilah is waiting.  

By the way, I hope you all had a delightful Mother's Day and felt celebrated for your role in whose-ever life it is you play a role.  Pets, kids, friends, relatives.  I am grateful for all of you - your support and your sense of humor fills my heart on the regular.