Category Archives: What the flippity-flop?
I spend too much time in the rabbit hole (Internet) reading about strange home remedies of yore.
I started this some time ago when I found that, like me, many kids were subjected to the following from parents
bent on murder:
- Turpentine (yes, as in paint thinner/remover) on sugar – to get rid of “worms”, and by “worms” I mean any intestinal distress or butt itching.
- Vicks – taken internally to get rid of a cold, sore throat, etc.
- Castor Oil – technically not a poison, but you’ll never convince me of it.
So, anyway, here’s a few others I found….umm…interesting:
Need relief from a stopped-up nose? Soak a cotton ball in cocaine (yes, as in coke) and shove it up there.
Got a sore throat? Then mix cocaine with warm water and olive oil, and drink.
To relieve eczema, soak cloths in laudanum and lead acetate. Apply to the affected area.
Losing your hair? Well, just drink a tea of sage and whisky.
And, if you suffer from acne just mix cannabis with lard and apply liberally to the affected areas.
I have no idea if any of these worked, but I suspect no one really gave a shit after trying them either, because cannabis/coke/laudanum.
So, last week I ordered a simple little cactus arrangement to put in the middle of our conference table for the visit from our corporate people.
I wanted to be sure it arrived in time, so I paid extra for it to get here the day before the visit..actually before noon the day before the visit.
At 11:00 a.m. I called the florist we use, “We’re Stupid Flowers and Plants”, because my cactus hadn’t arrived.
The very nice lady told me that the plant was, in fact, on its way.
At noon it still wasn’t here, so I called back and left a message this time.
Then this e-mail exchange happened:
Thank you for contacting We’re Stupid Flowers. Please accept our sincere apologies for the delay in delivery of your floral gift. We know how important prompt delivery is, and would like to rectify the situation to your satisfaction.
We have therefore issued a refund of $4.99 for the expedited service fee to help compensate for the delay. We want to ensure that your experience with We’re Stupid Flowers is a positive one, and we hope you will continue to utilize our services for all your gift-giving needs.
Again, please accept our apologies for the delay.
Okay, I’m the recipient by the way….so where is it?
Thank you for your recent email. We want to assure you that your order has been sent for delivery. We will contact you as soon as it is confirmed that the gift was received.
Thank you again and we look forward to speaking with you soon.
Are you even reading my responses?
I told you I’m the recipient.
You don’t need to contact me to tell me when I receive my ‘gift’. I’m pretty sure I’ll know.
Now, please contact whoever it is that is delivering my order and find out just where they are right now, and when will my order be delivered. I say this, because I am leaving here at 3:00 PM today. That is why I ordered the expedited delivery.
Thank you for your recent inquiry. We have notified our vendor of your request for delivery confirmation and as soon as we receive this information, it will be automatically forwarded to the email address provided on your order.
Thank you for your patience and please contact us if we can be of any further assistance. We are available for you 24 hours a day 7 days a week at xxx-xxx-xxxx.
Seriously? You’re not reading my e-mails are you?
I could write anything here..just blarglefarg and goobledocksin and you’ll say the same thing, won’t you?
I don’t need the delivery confirmation, I AM THE RECIPIENT.
I need to know WHEN THE DELIVERY WILL BE MADE.
Now, try again. Pick up the phone, call the local florist tasked with filling the order, and ask the friendly person on the other end just when they estimate my plant will get here. I don’t even need an exact time. Just approximately when will do.
And, I’m about done with We’re Stupid Flowers. If y’all cannot comprehend simple questions and give direct answers, I don’t think I can trust that my orders will be correct and delivered in a timely fashion. Shame, too. I’ve spent a lot of money over the past few years.
Thank you for your recent email. We apologize for the delay in response and thank you for your patience. We have contacted our local florist again and they have assured us that they will contact us as soon as they locate the delivery information for your order. Please rest assured, as soon as this information is received, we will contact you.
Thank you again for your patience and we look forward to speaking with you soon.
I gave up and left for the day, but when I came in the next morning I had no cactus plant delivered, but I was assured…..
Thank you for your recent purchase with We’re Stupid Flowers! Our records show that your order has been delivered to awesomesauciness on 10/07/2014.
If you have any questions regarding your order and would like to speak with a Customer Service Representative, please email us at welie@we’restupidflowers.com or dial (xxx) xxx-xxxx. We are here to assist you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Thanks again for your business. We look forward to serving you again soon!
Well, August started weird…sigh…
You see, there’s an online yard/garage sale site for my little town and I’ve managed to get a bunch of stuff without having to drive from garage sale to garage sale in the heat, wade through things that are sticky and questionable to find any type of useful object, and waste entire weekends.
It works like this – people post pics and prices on stuff they want to get rid of, and the first person to commit to buying gets it. The item is left on a front porch, and the money to pay for it is put under the front porch mat.
Usually, that’s how it works.
But not Friday, not for me it didn’t….of course not.
I saw the most adorable little music box thing with a kitty in overalls, batting a butterfly, on top. It was from a Beatrix Potter collection. I had no idea who the character was, not being a devotee of the writer.
Apparently, though, this character was very near and dear to the woman who decided to sell the kitsch to me.
In an e-mail I asked that she put it on her porch and I’d run by her house, slip the money under the mat, pick up the porcelain kitty and be on my way.
No, no..that wouldn’t do she replied, she must “put it in your loving hands…”
Ohhhhhhhhhhhkay….I double-checked to be certain we were discussing a porcelain doo-hickey and not a real kitty.
That should have been my first clue, but they don’t call me “Clueless Cleo” for nothing.
Actually, ‘they’ don’t call me that…but they should….sometimes…
So I agreed to go to her house and pick up the kitty.
When I got there, and knocked on the door, I was greeted by the nice Beatrix Potter fan and her two kitties. They were real, and so was she.
She led me to a back room, and after we entered she closed the door behind us.
I admit I got real nervous for a moment.
Nevermind that she was much older than me, I was trapped in a very cluttered little room with someone I had just met.
She took the porcelain music-box (did I mention it plays “Claire de Lune”?) kitty off a shelf, and stroking it she cooed, “There’s my pretty baby….here you go.” as she handed it to me.
“Take good care of Tom Kitty.” she said, smiling as I took it from her.
“Who?” I replied, wondering why she named her porcelain figurines a second before I realized this was a Beatrix Potter character.
Her face darkened…I mean really, kinda scary-looking, darkened.
“That’s his name.” she said, coldly.
I suddenly felt as though I were being accused of kidnapping a porcelain cat for nefarious purposes.
“Oh, oh of course!” I smiled, a little too brightly.
Her face relaxed as she returned my smile. Her eyes, though, showed her mistrust.
She opened the door and led me down the hallway again, chattering on about her newest rescue kitty, and other things. I wasn’t really paying attention as I just wanted to leave; the whole encounter having left me creeped out.
Since then I’ve noticed some other amazing pieces of artwork and antiques she listed for sale, but there’s no way I’m buying anything if it means going back to that house.
Not now. Not ever.
That was the question, and a very good one at that, I had rattlin’ round my brain the morning my husband looked over the back fence and then came back to announce said ‘loo was placed right at the entrance to our back forty.
It’s not really a back forty, it’s only a back quarter. But, back forty sounds so much more farm-y.
Actually, I don’t live anywhere near a farm, and the land behind my house is really two lots we bought a long time ago and they measure a quarter acre.
The land is constantly being used for construction crews to drive across to get to other lots they’re building on, or to stack materials for the same reason.
The port-a-potty was a first, but it was just after the dead body in the yard and it was a holiday weekend, and it was elebenty hunnert degrees at 9:00 a.m. so to say I was not happy is an understatement.
First thing I did was go out back and get the name of the company, their phone number, and the unit’s identifying number so I could call and tell them to get their shitter off my property.
I called before realizing it was July 4th, and got the answering service.
Yes, shitter-rentals has an answering service.
My own doctor doesn’t even have an answering service.
Apparently shitter renting is lucrative.
The lady I spoke to was suitably apologetic and understandably perplexed. She said she’d relay the information to the appropriate people and they’d get back to me on Monday.
I got off the phone just in time to hear a truck out back stopping on my lot.
I ran outside to confront the driver as I could see he had one of the rental company’s logos on the side of his truck.
He spoke no English.
Not. A. Word.
But, he understood my violent hand gestures indicating I wanted the shitter off my property to mean he should get the hell off my property immediately.
He skee-daddled…leaving the shitter behind.
Sigh….great, now all I’d done was scare the shit out of some poor immigrant and he had no place to ‘go’.
Monday rolled around, and (gasp!) no call from the rental company. Not only that, but we’d had a storm and the shitter was lying on its side covering my back driveway and bleeding blue chemicals. It looked mortally wounded.
I called them.
The lady I spoke to was very nice up to the point where I said, “…and I need this thing off my property right now..today, immediately. It got knocked over in the storm and now it’s leaking.”
“Did you request the rental?”
“No, no I didn’t.”
“Oh..well, ma’am we can only move the port-a-potty at the request of the person who rented it.”
“Wait, so you’re saying you come drop a shitter wherever you’re asked to and then when you’re called to point out a mistake in location you refuse to move it.”
“Ma’am, we can’t move it unless you ordered it.”
Right about here is where I lost it.
“Fine.” I fumed, gritting my teeth. “then I’m shoving your shitter into the street and the police will be giving you a call.”
I hung up the phone, furious.
Hubby was standing right there.
“Of course, I didn’t mean we were going to shove it into the street.” I said, noting his alarmed expression. “I don’t want some unsuspecting driver to come along and hit it. Someone could get hurt.”
“That would be…..shitty.” Hubby said, and we both collapsed in laughter.
I went back into the house, leaving him still trying to catch his breath.
A few minutes later hubby came inside, wiping the sweat off his brow.
“Took care of it.” He announced.
“What do you mean?” I asked.
“I moved it to the property next door.”
I went outside and sure enough through a combination of pushes and rolls, hubby had managed to get it from our yard to the property it probably belonged to.
“Was it heavy?” I asked when I came back in.
“Nope, but you have no idea how badly I wanted someone to drive by just so I could yell, ‘Shitter was full!’ at them as I shoved it over on its side.”
You know, as I was driving home that day I was thinking to myself…
Self, it’s been ages since you’ve had raw sewage back up into your house and overflow all over your floors. I think you’ve missed that.
Fortunately, the gods of all that is sewer-ish smiled upon me and suddenly shit (literally) got real.
The fastest plumber in the west (Swifty) came to the house, placed a camera in something he called the “main line”, and my brain heard as “stupidly expensive to fix”, and proceeded to show us some rather impressive images of a tree that had taken up residence in the aforementioned piping.
He said it would have to be dug up, and a large section of the main line would have to be replaced.
“How much will that be?” I asked.
He quoted an amount that I’m pretty sure was more than the GDP of Honduras last year..”..and, I can come do it tomorrow…” he finished, smiling.
Of course you can, I thought, and then you can take a cruise to Belize after you cash my check.
“Okay.” I sighed, knowing there was no alternative.
The next day, hubby was home while the plumber and his helper worked.
When I got home, I was rather alarmed to see a mound of dirt in the yard that looked exactly like the shallow graves we all see in movies and television shows.
Exactly. Like. That.
“What is that?” I asked hubby.
“A grave.” He said, offering no other explanation.
“Well, that’s what Swifty said it was and since he came with a helper and left alone…I didn’t ask questions.”
“Perfect,” I said, too tired from working all day to really care. “I guess the least we can do is get some kind of headstone.”
“And attract the attention of the police? Are you crazy?”
I just looked at him, and realized we were arguing about whether or not to mark the grave in my front yard with a headstone.
We weren’t discussing who was in it, why it was there, and how the hell this all happened.
No, we were contemplating the propriety of memorials in front yards.
It was as if we were discussing whether to have pancakes or waffles for breakfast. (There are definitely two camps on this issue, just like headstone or no headstone. I don’t like either, and hubby prefers pancakes…so maybe there are actually three camps)
Hubby smiled at me, “Don’t you want to know what happened?”
“Do I?” I asked, figuring that if it came up later I could always claim ignorance and not be lying.
“I came outside and saw Swifty mounding this dirt. I didn’t see Swifty’s helper so I jokingly said to him that if that’s a body there, I’m giving the police your name and number.”
“Swifty said, ‘Oh yeah, there’s a body buried in there. Also, I had to mound the dirt over the pipe to prevent crushing it. Over time, it will settle around the pipe and the ground will be more or less level.’ And he walked away…but just before he got in his truck he said, ‘Bird’ Now, I don’t know if he meant it was a bird or someone named Bird is buried there.”
“And you didn’t ask.” I said.
Hubby shook his head.
“Well, at least now we know what name to put on the headstone.” I said, and walked into the house.
We had a big Father’s Day barbecue at the awesomesauciness house on Sunday.
(big shout out – late of course – to all you Daddies out there – WOOT!!)
Anyway, oldest daughter, K, is the liberal in the family and not at all cool with guns.
Especially in the hands of her 6-yr. old son, Little J.
Let me explain.
It was an ‘airsoft’ gun. You know the kind that shoots tiny plastic pellets? Yeah, one of those had been given to his 7-yr. old cousin, W, and Little J was beside himself with anticipation and glee at the prospect of shooting some cans out of the trees out back.
Until K stepped in and pitched a hissy fit, “NO 6-yr. old NEEDS TO HAVE A GUN IN THEIR HANDS, I DON’T CARE IF IT IS NOT REAL.”
Big J, (K’s hubby and Little J’s daddy) quickly decided that discretion was the better part of valor, and ate ice cream.
In fact, most of us ate some of the homemade ice cream I’d made for the occasion.
While we were doing that, K went outside and set up the croquet set bent on teaching her son a more genteel way of playing with his cousin, W.
Little J did not get the ‘genteel’ part of the memo, and deciding a croquet mallet required a massive backswing, swung the mallet back in preparation for a shot and made direct contact with W’s eye, leaving an impressive shiner that we assured W the “chicks will dig”…even though, at seven, it’s not a thing for him, he was still gratified to know this.
K applied ice, kept apologizing, and administered many auntie kisses to W.
Big J, seizing the opportunity, took Little J outside where he proceeded to teach him the finer points of aiming an airsoft rifle at a non-human target and plinking the hell out of it.
Much rejoicing ensued, and K sat inside tight-lipped, until I said this…
“So, to recap here, K, it appears that whilst trying to protect the kids from the big, bad, gun you did, in fact, cause injury to W by placing a croquet mallet in the hands of a 6-yr. old that sees everything as a weapon.”
“And, has anyone been hurt by the airsoft gun?”
“I rest my case.”
I missed the first few texts, because it was late and you know, ninjas…
“Are we just going to stay in this awkward place, where we don’t talk ever?”
“Please talk to me.”
“I miss u.”
And that’s when I picked up my phone off the charger and realized I had suddenly become a teenage boy named ‘Alec’.
At first I giggled, and briefly contemplated being ‘Alec’ for the lovelorn, but then decided I’m not mean enough, so I picked up the conversation with…
“Sorry, wrong number”
“Cut it out Alec”
“Wait, is this seriously the wrong number?”
“No problem. Good luck”
“Alec, stop it”
“Ashley gave me ur number and ur just tricking me”
“Look, you have the wrong number. Check with whoever gave it to you. I’m a grandma, not a young man.”
“Alec, seriously stop it.”
“No, you stop it. I am NOT Alec.”
At this point, it’s nearly 11:00 pm and my hubby says, “Just turn your phone off.”
“No, I’m not going to be held hostage by a lovesick teenager.”
He shakes his head.
My phone’s text sound goes off again…
“I memorized ur number, and that is it.”
“Fine. Call me then.”
My phone rings, and as I pick up to say, ‘Hello’, I hear an audible gasp on the other end.
“See?” I said, “I am not Alec. You are texting the wrong number. Stop it.”
*click* – she hangs up, so I text her…
“See? I was not kidding.”
I put the phone down, and think the whole thing is over.
Ten minutes later….
“Ma’am, I am so sorry.”
“It’s okay, honey. And I wish you luck.”
The next day…
“Still not Alec.”
“Alec, who answered your phone last night?”
“No, it was a woman”
*okay, feck it, I give up*
“Yes, there’s something I’ve been meaning to tell you for a long time…..”
You know how you’re driving down the road, and the sensor for the seat belt in the passenger seat goes off to tell you that the passenger should buckle their belt right now, and there’s no one in the seat so you wonder if a ghost has hitched a ride or if your new car has some kind of computer glitch that starts with a seemingly innocuous warning but farther down the road will turn into the vehicle’s entire computer system crashing and causing the car to fail at 70 mph, but then you realize it’s your purse that’s making the sensor go off and you think ‘no wonder my shoulder hurts all the time’ and you also wonder how much shit you must be carrying to have a seat sensor think your purse is a person and then you debate over cleaning out your purse or just saying feck it and fastening the seat belt around it?