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Archive for April, 2008

Apparently today is Secretaries’ Day.  Or, Administrative Professionals Day.  Because we must be PC. 

Listen, back when I was a secretary, or administrative assistant, or administrative professional, or whatever the hell else they call themselves these days, I didn’t care what they called it, just so long as I got a free lunch out of the deal.  Because that’s how I roll. 

And you know what?  I still type up stuff for my boss, not because I’m his secretary, but because he can’t type for shit and his spelling and grammar are even worse.  Part of my job security is that I make him look good.  Hm.  Maybe I should make a case for him to buy my lunch today. 

And while I’m at it, guess who does all the clerical stuff at home, too — the bill paying, the form-filling-out, the push-one-for-this-push-two-for-that phone work, the filing and mail sorting and all that tedium?  That’s right, me.  Me, me, me.  So I should get my husband to take me out for dinner, too. 

This could work. 

 

 

— Mox

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Happy Earf Day

Now go hug a tree. 

I’m not sure how I feel about all this Earth Day business.  I’m also not too sure what to think about carbon footprints (muddy footprints I understand) or global warming or the decline of frogs and salamanders worldwide. 

Speaking of declining frogs, Spawn’s frog declined permanently over the weekend.  I was beginning to wonder how much longer I was going to have to make a trip to Petsmart to buy crickets for the little guy, and now I have my answer.  This of course after I bought a fresh supply of crickets.  Lucky for them, we’ll be celebrating Earth Day around here by releasing them into the wild. 

I heard on the news this morning that some of the eco-nuts are planning protests in my area, protesting the through-way of a much-needed interstate.  What form these protests are going to take, I’m not sure, since so far there hasn’t been a shovelful of dirt turned in concert with this project.  So if they’re planning on chaining themselves to trees or lying down in front of bulldozers, I suspect they will be sorely disappointed. 

I suppose protest is one of the cornerstones that this country was founded on, and is an inalienable right as a result, but demonstrations and sign-waving and the like are just not my cup of tea.  I guess if it were the right cause I’d join the growing march but at this point my big passion is staying ahead of the laundry.  Someday when the Earth is all destroyed Spawn will remember how I always made sure there were clean towels and socks to be had. 

If The News Media is to be believed, the world is going to hell in a handbasket, and frankly, that just makes me want to ignore all those dire warnings all the more.  I think for Earth Day I will go sit in a sunny meadow filled with dandelions and blow seeds everywhere. 

 

— Mox

 

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There is a sizeable portion of my personality that is perfectly content to live in my own little protective bubble.  I am master of my own universe there. 

I spent a good portion of the day on Friday puttering about in the garden, a rainy, cool Saturday wandering around a garden center gathering ideas, and a small portion of Sunday getting basic spring cleaning done out in the yard.  And I was perfectly content.  It was really nice to drop out of my routine for a while. 

De-stressing sometimes requires a physical component to be complete.  As I was soaking in the tub last night, tired down to my bones, I felt rather peaceful.  I discovered this component to stress relief back some years ago when my grandmother was dying.  I would go to the nursing home to visit with her every other day, made sure she ate, made sure she was cared for, and then I would come home and put on my grubbies and dig around in the garden for hours.  As I dug I would process my fear, my worry, the growing seed of grief.  It didn’t stop me from developing stomach problems in the wake of her death, but it did help keep me from going completely crazy. 

My husband and I play the lottery, and we often talk about what we’d do if we ever got the right numbers.  Just the notion of having all my bills paid off, being able to afford Spawn’s education without having to stretch the budget, being able to finally let go of the breath that I have been holding — well, that’s worth its’ weight in gold to me.  Yeah, I suppose we’d take a couple of extreme vacations, or buy something really extravagant, but for the most part our money mentality would be hard to change. 

One thing I’d do is drop out of the rat race, stop scurrying along like I’m bailing off a sinking ship.  Oh hell yes, I’d quit my job.  In a heartbeat.  I’d do the things that I wanted to do for a change, attend events that I don’t have the time or money to attend nowadays, take some classes, paint, write, learn Italian.  To be able to involve myself in the things that truly interest me, without concern to how they impact my bottom line, to me that is what freedom really is. 

In lieu of all that, I snatch what time I can to dig in my garden.  It’s therapy on the cheap. 

 

 

— Mox

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I live in an area of the country that’s known for its’ festivals.  Meaning, if you want a deep fried Oreo cookie, come here. 

This weekend was the beginning of the festival season, with a street festival that began on Friday and ran through this afternoon.  The fun thing about having a seven year old is that you get the perfect excuse to ride the rides that you want to, and the best excuse for not riding the rides you don’t.  I’m partial to the Tilt-a-Whirl.  My inner ear, however, isn’t as limber as it used to be.  I got off the ride staggering like a drunk. 

I also allowed myself to get sucked into the carnival “games” and shelled out four dollars for the dubious pleasure of tossing a handful of ping-pong balls into tiny glass fishbowls in hope of winning a live goldfish.  We are now one goldfish richer, though I think the balance of fish around here will be back to normal in a couple of days.  Goldie (as Spawn has named it) spent a rather arduous afternoon being schlepped all around the midway in a plastic box with a hole punched in the top and then finished the tour with a spin (literally) on the Ferris wheel.  I’m not entirely sure I’m going to recover from that, so I don’t hold out a lot of hope for Goldie. 

I have eaten enough festival food in the past few days that I’ll be sporting a thin layer of grease on my skin for a while.  I predict a lot of salads coming up this week. 

As much as I loathe the expense that comes along with venues such as this, I will freely admit that it was a refreshing change from the torture that has been winter and early spring around here. 

 

 

— Mox

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Saturday.  And it’s raining.  And what I am I about to do?  Go to a garden center and walk around in the rain and look at plants. 

Either I’m crazy or I’ve got spring fever. 

— Mox

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So about 4:30 this morning, I was fast asleep, having some goofy dream about trying to get out of a parking garage (boy, there’s a metaphor for my week), when, quite literally, something shook me awake. 

That something measured at 5.2 on the Richter scale and lasted about 10 seconds.  Enough to wake my husband and me up.  And considering that I’m a pretty sound sleeper, that’s saying something, indeed. 

So yes, we had an earthquake this morning.  When you live along the New Madrid Fault zone these things happen from time to time.  Usually the fault moves so lightly that we don’t feel it, but every now and again we get a rattler. 

Two thoughts on the subject: 

You know how you’ve heard that when The Big One hits you need to go brace yourself in a doorway?  Yeah, well, we didn’t do that.  We didn’t even get out of bed.  Oh, I thought about it, but when it whole thing was over 10 seconds later, I shrugged it off.  Guess The Big One will have to be bigger than that to get me out from between the warm covers. 

Just once in my life — and this would take a hella lot of planning and timing and perfect alignment of the stars and planets and stuff — I’d like to feel the earth move whenever, ahem, someone is rocking my world.  Just so we could say that we broke the planet. 

What?  It’s springtime.  Bears come out of hibernation right about now. 

 

— Mox

 

 

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There are times when people do things that shock and/or surprise me and I’m so flabbergasted that I just can’t make words come out of my mouth.  I’m guessing this is God’s way of keeping me honest, because let’s face it, if I said what I was really thinking to people my new name would be That Bitch. 

Common courtesy isn’t all that common, my friends.  If it were, the common folk would have more of it. 

Last night Spawn and I hit the DQ for what amounts to an approximation of ice cream in this little podunk town.  I’m not a fan of DQ but when it’s the only game in town for ice cream you have to make do with what you have.  So we’re sitting there in the drive-thru and the kid is hemming and hawing about what favor Blizzard to get, when someone else pulls up behind me.  I’m waiting waiting waiting for the kid to decide, and just about the time that the kid makes the decision, the lady in the vehicle behind me decides she can’t wait in line behind me any longer. 

Now, listen.  I understand the frustration that comes with waiting in the DQ drive-thru lane.  Usually it’s because the cadre of pimply-faced teenagers back in the ice cream room are conducting a Keystone Cops firedrill of some sort.  This time it just happened to be the decision-making process of a 7-year-old that was gumming up the works. 

Let me paint you a picture:  the lady in the vehicle behind me is perfectly coiffed, obviously a bottle blonde, with one of those look-at-me-I’m-important Bluetooth earsets in one ear.  She’s driving (wait for it) … a shiny white Lincoln Navigator.  The other half of this picture:  Mox has had the Day From Hell and looks the part.  Hair in a shambles, all makeup gone, wearing sweats and having cramps.  Mox is also driving what amounts to a beat-up, nine-year-old mini SUV, mud on the tires, filthy, dinged up, with a dent on the rear quarter panel from backing into someone else in a parking lot, and full of the detritus of daily living.  You can rest assured from the magnet touting the Catholic school displayed across the back of the vehicle that the reason for this little tableau is that 1) I’ve got a kid and 2) the car is paid for. 

So it’s a little bit of class warfare going on here. 

The lady in the Lincoln Navigator starts to whip around me and get in front of me in the drive-thru lane.  And the only thing I can do at that moment is stare at her with my mouth hanging open because I cannot believe what I am seeing.  I roll my window down.  She rolls her window down.  She says to me, “Is your car broken down? Why aren’t you moving?” 

WHAT? THE? FUCK? 

Lady, I’ve got a seven year old in the back seat who can’t make a decision.  THESE THINGS TAKE TIME. 

Which is pretty much what I said to her. 

There are things in this world that just hit me crossways and folks, this was one of them.  First of all, I do not appreciate the inference from Ms. Snootypants in the shiny new SUV that because I and my car both look like hell today that we are broken down.  And not only did she assume that my battered little car was broken down, she didn’t give enough of a shit to help and thought she’d just go around me to the drive-thru order window. 

So I pull up to the order window, place our order.  The lady in the SUV was on my ass the whole time.  Pay for our stuff, pull up the the next window.  Yes, after she ordered her stuff, she pulled up right on my ass to the next window.  I swear, y’all, it was like she was breathing down my neck.  The nerve of me to be poor and be in her way. 

And I’m sitting there and muttering under my breath about it, because I really don’t want Spawn to pick up the numerous and profane words I am uttering about a fellow human being.  When I pulled away I really had to resist the urge to extend my arm out the window and flip her the bird. 

Had I been alone I might have done that.  But the mother’s heart is the child’s first schoolroom, and I want for Spawn to be a better student than what I was. 

I am constantly reminded that most of the time we do not know the circumstances that a person is dealing with, and we don’t need to make assumptions based upon the way things look.  But when the shoe is on the other foot and people are making assumptions about me — me! — based upon what they see, well, it pisses me off. 

So, okay, lesson learned there. 

But I am still mad about it and if I see that lady again I might just go ahead and fly the bird at her. 

 

 

— Mox

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