Last Friday a snowflake fell on Dallas and the entire world went batshit crazy.
In all fairness, a few pellets of sleet joined the snowflake so there’s that.
Now, my normal commute these days is about an hour. On Friday, it took me THREE AND A HALF hours to make it from work to home.
I think a Kardashian or two got pregnant, gave birth, and started a search for the baby daddy all in the time it took me to get from Point A to Point B.
I saw TWELVE accidents in a 20-mile stretch of highway. All of them single-car, none of them looked like anyone was hurt, and every one of them avoidable if people would just pay attention.
But that’s not the worst of it.
Stuck, sitting on the highway with no exit in sight, I had to pee so badly I created a makeshift bedpan for my car’s front seat and prayed that a. I wouldn’t have to use it, but if I did then b. I’d positioned it properly. (fyi, I didn’t have to test my MacGyver-ish work but I’m seriously considering carrying an actual bedpan for future disasters it was that close)
But that’s not the worst of it.
Then there was the part where I was watching big rigs get stuck on bridges with slight inclines because the bridges were solid sheets of ice, and praying that fishtailing trailer didn’t slam me as I crept past them.
But that’s not the worst of it.
You wanna know what the worst thing was? Other than having to hear my hubby on the phone telling me how pretty the snow looked from in front of the fireplace at home while I struggled to maintain some control over my bladder?
It was the mother trucker from hell in front of me. She appointed herself shoulder police, and since we were in the far right lane and no one was really moving, she had ample opportunities to block drivers who tried to take advantage of the unused shoulder of the highway to move up in the world. She’d pull off to the shoulder every time someone broke from the pack and tried to maneuver their way around. Once an SUV came up alongside me, and I guess she saw them at the last second and pulled hard to the right forcing the SUV off onto the embankment and down in some slick/frozen grassy area. I thought for sure he was going to roll it, but he managed to maintain control and got around her. She wasn’t happy, so she decided to stay on the shoulder because no one, by God, was going to do that to her – the SHOULDER POLICE – again. Since she seemed content to now be the person using the shoulder to move along, I inched my car up until I was about halfway down the length of her trailer. It was at that point she rolled down her window and started gesturing wildly and screaming at me. I rolled down my window, utterly perplexed as I had not tried to use the shoulder to pass her but was, in fact, passing her in the lane. You know, the right of way, the part you’re supposed to drive on.
The conversation went…
CrazyMotherTrucker: Do you want to get run over, bitch??!!
CMT: DO YOU WANT TO GET RUN OVER??
Me: But, you’re the one on the shoulder and I’m nearly passed you now so why don’t you just let me get in front of you and….
CMT: I’M COMING OVER NOWWWWW!!! RIGHT NOW!!
Me: (realizing at this point she had about 40,000 lbs. on me) Uhhh….
And she did…she just kept coming, and I had nowhere to go because right next to me was another truck and he had nowhere to go and so on.
So I stopped.
And I prayed.
And I held my breath and my bladder…the last one just barely.
And she juuust missed me by an inch or two as she did just what she screamed she would.
Crazy. Mother. Trucker.
We all have them, the things that you see or do or see others doing that freak you right. the hell. out.
Here’s a partial list of mine:
1.Getting a text from my dentist’s office about how excited they are to see me on such and such date. Really? You look forward to inflicting pain? Dentists are freakishly weird.
2. Having the vet’s office ask me which of my “kids” or “babies” I’m calling about, AND when I’m there and go into an exam room, they announce that so-and-so’s “mommy” is waiting in such-and-such room. I’m pretty sure mating with animals is illegal…wait, it’s still illegal to mate with critters, right? Tell me I’m right. PLEASE. Because, if it’s not then I’ve crossed over from freaked to full-on fecked up.
4. I skipped 3.
5. You just went back to look.
6. Drones. I actually swatted at my hair the other night, thinking the drone overhead was a swarm of bees trying to kill me. In my defense, it was my first droney-bee encounter, and it was high enough above me that I missed. Dammit.
7. My frat-boy neighbors, a/k/a The Dronemasters. They NEVER sleep. Never. Go to bed at midnight? They’re up. Get up at 2:00 a.m.? They’re up. 4:00 a.m.? They’re up! They do this every night, then all their vehicles leave during the day. I think they’re vampires…and now I’m really freaked out. And lest you think I’m that neighbor peering out my windows at the frat boys, may I remind you that I can’t see their house from the only window I have that faces them. I have to go outside to verify this. I’m just looking out for you. You’re welcome.
So, what freaks you right-the-hell-out?
….there’s never, ever, not ever, not for one minute…a dull moment in my life……..
Christmas went well. It was a hunnert degrees outside, and Santa looked like he would melt inside his suit when he visited the gaggle of screaming grandchildren gathered to meet him on Christmas Eve.
Months of preparation and the entire gift-opening extravaganza was over in 12.4 minutes.
The adults at my house engage in a White Elephant gift exchange. The concept, for those who don’t know, is to gather gawd-awful items you already have, wrap them prettily, and then every person gets a number and we pick packages based on if we’re first, second, and so on. After the first pick, the next person can either ‘steal’ a person’s gift or get a new one from the stack. And so it goes.
The idea is to give someone you love a hideous/disgusting gift. It’s a Christmas Spirit thing.
Of course, there’s always that one relative who doesn’t get it. That person invariably brings a truly magnificent gift. This year, it was a giant bag filled with gorgeous household knick-knacks, wall hangers, and so on. It was the FIRST gift picked, so you just knew the receiver wasn’t going to hang onto it.
Except the receiver, my youngest son, literally guarded his loot and threatened anyone who came near. He looked like a dog guarding the food bowl as he’d place his body between the would-be thief and the bag…growling and giving the thief the stink-eye.
The kid’s got game when it comes to intimidating looks.
I thought we were going to have a brawl a time or two as shouts of “cheater!” and “That’s not how this game is played!” fell on son’s deaf ears.
For my part, I’ve got so many knick-knacks and crapola around already I’m thinking of changing my name to Pier One Kirkland’s (got a nice ring to it, doesn’t it?), so I didn’t want a giant bag with more dust collectors.
In the end, son got to keep his big bag and I got a coloring book and crayons..perfect..no, really, perfect for when the grandkids come over.
I think we need to explain the White Elephant rules one. more. time.
Christmas Day is usually quiet and laid back at our house. I won’t get out of my jammies all day, unless we have company for dinner – which we did this year. It was still quiet, as all the grandkids were occupied with their new stuff.
The very next day I came down with the latest version of norovirus. This was the day we were supposed to start taking everything down because the day after that we were going to visit my mother some 700 miles away. Instead, I spent a day and a half praying to the porcelain gods and wishing I could sleep until it all passed. I mean, really…you get the pukes and a raging fever with body aches all at once. Seriously? ONE is bad enough, why oh why do we have to get both? Then, I spent the next four days (three of which were at my mother’s house) with a come-and-go fever, cold sweats, and zero appetite. Good times.
But, it doesn’t end there…as we were preparing to leave on our long road trip (a day and a half behind schedule) – and let me tell you just how excited I was for that, having been so sick so recently – when my sister’s frantic calls and texts began. Her husband was admitted to ICU with sepsis. How he went from a healthy, cutthroat, corporate attorney to death’s door can be attributed to the medical profession. He had a biopsy, it got infected, then it really pissed his body off and he wound up in the hospital for a solid week. He’s home now, with a PICC line for antibiotics. Out of the woods, be definitely still on the mend.
And that was just last week…hell, part of last week. The rest, though, was anti-climactic after all that led up to it.
I even rang in 2016 asleep, on the couch at mom’s, for the first time since I was a child.
It was a hint for this year. Keep it quiet, dude. I need my rest.
It’s a post about why there isn’t a post.
Remember how I said I was working on a long and whiny post about my mother?
I did write that post. It took days, and days, for me to write. And, that’s not like me. I usually write a post in a matter of minutes and then share it with my devoted reader without even proofing it.
Not this post, though, this one was epic, for the ages, with things everyone can relate to.
Well, everyone with a dysfunctional parent anyway.
I wrote it, I read it, I laughed, I cried.
And, then, I deleted it.
It’s supposed to be cathartic to write stuff, like long letters, to and about people who’ve hurt you. You’re never supposed to send (or publish) those letters, and still you’re supposed to feel better. Unburduned. Like a beautiful butterfly, emerging from the cocoon of anger and hurt. Like an addict, finally free of….well, you get the picture.
Except that didn’t happen. I mean, the only thing I felt good about was not publishing a diatribe against someone who will never change, cannot understand her flaws, and ultimately someone who despite it all loves me unconditionally.
So, maybe the catharsis part will hit later. Like the delayed reaction you get when you down the third shot of tequila (not that I’d know what that’s like, people).
Finally I am back in my office. It’s a long story, but my office was without power for weeks. Technically, it still is, but we’ve made a deal with Satan and he’s got us plugged right into the bowels of Hell and we’ve got electricity now. And, trust me, you get used to the smell.
My crazy dog, whom I shall hereafter refer to as Darling Diva provided I can remember it, has this habit of absolutely, positively, without question, needing to pee at 2:00 a.m. That’s an “a” people…as in in the middle of the freakin’ night. Every. Single. Night.
I don’t care if she peed at 1:59:59 a.m., at 2:00 a.m. she must go out to pee.
She also engages in strange behaviors while she’s out there. These are things she doesn’t do at any other time.
I call it the “middle-of-the-fecking-night-crazies”.
Of course, hubby pretends to be asleep every night..conveniently..so I wind up taking her outside.
One night she bolted from the door to far end of the yard, ran around under some bushes, bolted halfway back across the yard, stopped to pee, and then ran full-tilt right back into the house. Another time, she ran under the bushes and proceeded to twerk on the branches for a few seconds before peeing on them.
Recently, I opened the door to let her out and was hit with the unmistakable odor of Eau de LePew, as in Pepe LePew. If you have to ask who that is…you need to get yourself to YouTube immediately and watch some real cartoon characters.
Anyway, she hesitated to go out and I hesitated to let her. We cautiously tiptoed out on the porch, looking around…did you know skunks are nearly blind, and if startled they will spray the startler without even asking who it is first. This seems like a design flaw, to me. The worst smelling creature on the planet is virtually blind, and its only defense when surprised or threatened (and seriously, if its blind isn’t everything non-skunk a threat?) is to release a cloud of noxious gas so potent it’s used in chemical warfare? (No shit, I’m not making that up).
We didn’t see Monsieur LePew, but I didn’t let her dawdle either. I told her to go pee and then we skedaddled back inside.
The next night, at you guessed it – 2:00 AM, Diva wanted out again. I opened the door, and didn’t smell anything. But, she bolted out to the porch, to the tree next to it and next thing I know, she’s prancing around the yard with a ball of fur in her mouth.
She was quite pleased with herself, and I was praying she hadn’t just snatched Pepe up as a prize she was going to shake to death then eat.
Hey, people…she’s a dog, it’s what they do.
I didn’t know what to do. On the one hand, if it was a skunk I just couldn’t see any possible scenario not involving hazmat suits, respirators, and quarantine..for both the dog and me.
On the other hand, if it wasn’t a skunk, then whatever she was about to chow down on would undoubtedly leave such a mess on her face, paws, and elsewhere that it would look like I’d stumbled into Zombieland. And, she’d be bringing that shit back into the house.
I don’t want these kinds of conundrums at 2:00 AM.
I briefly considered waking hubby, but in the time it would take him to get up and get outside one of these scenarios would be over and then I’d have a stinky/messy dog and a pissy spouse.
I sighed and decided I at least had to see what it was Diva was now standing a few feet in front of me, proudly showing off, still clenched lightly in her jaw.
Grumbling, I slowly inched over to her and quietly gave her the command to “drop it”. Now, that command works like a charm when it’s a ball, toy, my glasses, shoes, etc. I didn’t expect it to work when what I said was “drop it” and what she undoubtedly heard was “no, you cannot have your tasty morsel, and in fact, I want it so let go”.
But, she did as I asked. And that’s when I saw the fluffy bunny tail.
I have never, in my whole life, been so happy to see the cottony puff of a little bunny’s tail.
The bunny lay there in the grass on its side and not moving. Diva looked at me, crestfallen, then down at her prize.
I made her come to me, but she did so reluctantly, not once taking her eyes off “her” bunny.
We went inside, and I hoped Thumper was just stunned and wouldn’t be lying there dead at sunrise (thankfully, he was gone). Being a dog, Diva promptly forgot all about her late-night-almost-snack, and curled up to go back to sleep.
Has it really been over three weeks since I posted?
And now I don’t have time.
*draws deep breath*
Between now and February I have
12 holiday gifts to make
11 parties to
10 bottles of wine to (ahem) sample
6 geese to stuff
5 golden opportunities to place foot in mouth
4 calls to make
3 french pastries to eat
2 dove bars to inhale when no one’s looking
And a car trip to the country!
I wish I was kidding, but I’m not.
See you sometime in 2015…or sooner if something besides this happens.
I’ll leave you with this from the out-of-context theater of Thanksgiving at my house…
Hubby to 5-yr. old grandson: Do NOT hit people with the gun.
5-yr. old grandson (after a moment’s contemplation): But, I can shoot them, right?
Hubby: Of course. Just don’t hit them.
Merry Chrishanukwanzaabox to all and to all a good night!!
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!