Tag Archives: ramblings

Employee of the Month

 

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I closed our last joint account yesterday.  It was a very hard thing to do.  Sad. Poignant.  Excruciating. The customer service rep who assisted me was very kind and gentle – she had assisted me last year with some matters after my husband’s death and even remembered the details of our accident.

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Not at all like the perky young woman in August who wiped out a 40 year history of the customer he had been at the bank we had used for our entire marriage with a cheery demeanor that probably earned her the title of employee of the month.  If so, I was going to find her car in the parking lot.  I made a mental note to key it on the way out.

“I’ll just take him off here” she said, tapping away on her keyboard.  “And here.” More tapping, and smiling.  “And…..here.  Done.”  She wheeled over to the printer, then rolled back to the desk.  She shoved some papers in front of me to sign.  Which I did, slowly, meticulously, with my beautifully written married name.   I kept the pen she had handed me.  I wondered if I had anything stronger with which to puncture her tires.  Probably not.

I contemplated whether either of my kids would bail me out of jail if I jumped across the desk and shook this lovely creature by the neck and shouted in her face “Look, he wasn’t just a name on an account.  He was your customer for 40 years. Forty years.  He was a good man, a decent man.  He loved his family.  He loved me.  He thought I was beautiful – even when I was anything but.  He mattered.”  But I did not.   She was young and fresh-faced and enthusiastic.  More than anything, I hoped bad things didn’t happen to her.  Ever.  I hoped she never felt empty and lost and alone.

“Here’s your death certificate back,” she handed me the folded document along with copies of my newly signed paperwork.  I stuffed it all into my purse.  I shook her hand and thanked her.  At least I think I did.  I walked slowly out, tears streaming down my face.  Past a former co-worker who stopped me to offer condolences.  I waved her off – I could not talk.  Past the employee of the month parking spot…

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So, yes, yesterday was tough.  The last account.  But thanks to gentle handling by a thoughtful employee I got through it.  Thank you for asking about my granddaughter.  For asking about my sons.  For asking even about my dog.  For remembering those details.  For caring.  For recognizing how tenuous my grip was, how close to the edge I live.

You, madam, are Employee of the Month.  And yes, a donation has been made in your name to the Animal Welfare League.  Thank you.

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WFVR – 101.7 on your Fahrenheit Dial – When you’re Hot – You’re Hot

  

English: Cover of Birth Control Review July 19...

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I’ve spent a couple of days without Internet.  That is never good, especially for my interwebz-addicted husband.  What I have had, instead, is a pretty good fever, hovering just under 102 degree Fahrenheit.  I like to type Fahrenheit.

Fahrenheit (1994 video game)

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Anyway, my fever-addled brain has come up with some interesting(?) thoughts.  For instance:

What if my dog can smell a tumor but can’t tell me?

English: basketball

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What if more basketball really is the answer?

Do ions know whether they are negative or positive?  Do they try to change?

What if I tried match.com and got matched up with my first husband?

match.com - Make Love Happen

match.com - Make Love Happen (Photo credit: bixentro)

What if I tried match.com and found out my current husband was trying out match.com, as well?  Awkward, no?  And what if we weren’t a perfect match?

English: An Egg McMuffin breakfast sandwich fr...

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Wouldn’t it be cool if cars could talk?  I don’t mean in the parking lot, to each other….I mean to you, their owner.  It could go like this “good morning, Katy, you look lovely this morning.”  See, so far, so good.  “What, you forgot breakfast again?  The drive-though?  Again?  Look, you didn’t even clean up the last mess you made eating in here.  I’m getting a little tired of your trying to manuever us through this crazy traffic with a McMuffin in one hand and cup of coffee in the other….”  On second though, not such a good idea.

Generic regular strength enteric coated 325mg ...

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Wouldn’t it be cool to take the aspirin that jackass was talking about (you know, the one that was talking about birth control and said an aspirin between the ladies’ knees was effective birth-control?)  Yeah, that jackass (Foster Friess).  Take some aspirin (still in the bottle) and place it forcefully into his meatus.  Look it up if you must, but I think that would take care of his birth control needs for a little while.

Why does my dog bark at butterflies and birds but never even twitched her ears when the Comcast guy got out of his truck, knocked on the door, and entered our home?

Justin Bieber at the 2010 White House Easter E...

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Why does the Comcast guy look like a 14 year old Justin Bieber?

Where DO broken hearts go?

Why did they call the wind Mariah?

When will that tylenol kick in?

What is that metallic taste?  Why is there a spoon in my mouth?

Why do ice chips sound wonderful after surgery but not so much when suggested as a main entree?

Is it “feed a fever and starve a cold”, or “starve a fever and feed a cold”?  I can never remember.

Have you got any ice cream?

Why don’t I just put this laptop down for now and get another 18 hours of sleep?

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The Pain in My Head is a Pain in the Arse – and Where’s the Pizza

Migraine

Migraine sufferers:  Napolean Bonaparte, Thomas Jefferson, Robert E. Lee, Ulysses S. Grant.  Lewis Carrol, Emily Dickinson, Virginia Woolf, Signmund Freud, Nietzche, Whoopi Goldberg, Julius Caesar, Elvis, Me.

I have had a migraine for the past 2 days now.  Unfortunately, these were the last 2 days of the college classes I teach.  I drugged up and tried to go on.  This is not always a good idea.  The slurred speech, inability to concentrate or complete a full sentence – outward manifestations of my malady.  On more than one occasion I have had employers, friends, family members , strangers and policemen suspect that I was under the influence.  I was under the influence, all right, of dilated blood vessels in my head.

The unseen effects:  nausea, often advancing to outright vomiting; photophobia – the inability to tolerate light; olfactory disturbances which often includes smelling disgusting things that are not there.   Like burnt toast, cat feces, and diesel fumes.  I can tolerate neither noise nor silence. Visual disturbances that begin before the pain – the aura.  There are gray holes in my vision – that part of my sight is simply missing.  The rest of my visual field is wavy, like looking through a falling sheet of water.  Then in the throes of the migraine, colors appear brighter, sharper – almost too bright to tolerate and stationary objects appear to be moving.  It’s a trip…

And a throbbing, stabbing unrelenting pain in my head – behind my eye and down toward the back of my neck.  Once the pain has subsided – my scalp is tender and there is a “zinging” sensation with any movement of my head.

I know I will live when I start to feel ravenous; but I am not nearly well enough to forage for food.  As a young mother, I kept the pizza menus near the phone. My boys would, upon being given the thumbs up, order a pizza (and take money to pay for it from the envelope marked for that purpose). I associate pizza to this day with headaches and illness – needless to say it is not one of my favorite foods.

My children spent an inordinate, guilt-producing amount of time taking care of me instead of the other way around.  I often had 3 or 4 migraines a week – the kind that sent me directly to my bedroom, where the shades would be drawn, music played at just above a whisper, and no one moved around me because their motion would make me violently ill.  Once when I neglected to keep the pizza envelope funded, my older son (7 or 8 years old at the time) rode his bike to a deli to get me a cup of soup after emptying his pockets, piggybank, and scavenging the change compartment of my car to scrape up enough change to feed me.  I was filled with incredible admiration and abject horror that my firstborn was compelled to be the caregiver.  I spent too many days and nights in bed, praying they would not kill each other or burn the house down while I was incapacitated.

Medication is usually helpful but I occasionally will have a migraine that laughs in the face of modern medicine, and more than one emergency room visit was necessitated by intractable migraine.  There, unless there were visible manifestations (like puking my guts out) I would be treated like a drug-seeker.  My doctor friends tell me that drug seekers often claim migraine symptoms and are exceedingly persistent in their pursuit of “relief”.

I am coming out of this migraine – which is a good thing, I was supposed to be packing for my trek north.  Because I was planning on leaving  –  there are no groceries in the house.  Why doesn’t anyone deliver pizza at 7:00 am?

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Sponsors I Won’t Be Seeking

CLAIROL

I probably need Miss Clairol more than most people my age.  I have white hair.  I have gone beyond salt and pepper – that was in my 30s. I found my first gray hairs at 16.  I plucked them out.  It soon became apparent that this would not be a good long-term strategy.  So I colored.  I have had every hair color known to mankind not found in nature, except for the blues, greens, purples and magentas.

I have thick, white, goofy hair. It grows very fast.  If I did decide to color it again, I would have to touch it up every few days.  I’m far too busy (read – too lazy) for that.  If it bothers you, please look away.  I’ve come to accept it, along with everything else that makes me – ME.

COLON CLEANSE

Not only will I not seek their sponsorship, neither do I need their services.  My colon cleanses itself every morning, sometimes five or six times before I leave the house. A long morning commute is not a good idea for me.  If you look in the dictionary under “regularity” you’ll find my picture (you’ll recognize me by my white hair).  We’re good.

AHH BRA

I have spent many hours and dollars attempting to find a comfortable, supportive undergarment for the upper region.  I am here to tell you that this product is not it.  I got six in the mail.  Maybe, MAYBE, if I put all six on at once there might have been a HINT of support, the fabric was so thin as to be see-through.  The design could only work if supplemented with massive amounts of DUCT TAPE.  It is not easy being a size 40 LONG  and these bras do absolutely nothing for a generous bustline.  I looked like I was sporting a couple of cantaloupe in a pair of wind socks. In a paradox not understood by anyone, I have lost 25 pounds and gained a cup size.  Go figure.

WEIGHT WATCHERS

Speaking of losing weight, I simply cannot stand to attend Weight Watchers meetings.  The leaders they hire have got to be the some of the worst public speakers I have ever met. So far as I can tell, their only qualification is that they must have lost weight with Weight Watchers and kept it off.

I NEED Weight Watchers, but I just can’t stomach the commercialized meetings and mindless crap spewed by members.  The handwritten flip charts are so tacky from a corporation that has bilked billions from desperate wanna-be losers.

It seems ridiculous to me  to assign an artificial value (POINTS, or now, POINTS PLUS) to foods when learning about real nutritional values makes more sense.  Ironically, Weight Watchers does have a program that espouses whole grains, lean proteins and minimally processed  whole foods.  They just don’t promote it (Simply Filling Technique).  Apparently, the program that lets you eat M&Ms and Little Debbies as long as you still have points left over is good enough for most people.  I’m working with www.nutritionmirror.com and my own workouts for now…with pretty good success.

BOTOX

I am constantly surprised by the twists and turns of life, but I do not wish to look as though I am constantly surprised.  The unwrinkled forehead, to me, is not a good look.  These forehead wrinkles I’m carrying allow me to look as though I am deep in thought, without ever actually having to be deep in thought.  What could be better!!!

I spent 10 years as a nursing home inspector and met a lot of elderly people.  Some of the most beautiful faces (to me, anyway) were leathered, lined, crinkled and wrinkled.  Those faces had character, reflected joy and sorrow, showed both hope and acceptance.  I only hope to possess that much beauty one day.

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Get Outta My Personal Space

 

There are a couple of alter-egos who share my personal space and whose voices I spend a lot of time trying to mute/censor/edit.

The first is The Uncensored Broad (TUB).  She is likely to say anything to anyone at anytime.  She says the things I only think about saying, and would probably only say under the influence of at least 3 margaritas (rocks, with salt, thank you very much).  She’s a hoot.  She looks like Maxine, and her voice sounds a lot like Lewis Black.  I like her, usually, unless she takes over and gets my butt in trouble before I can stuff the words back into her mouth.

My second persona is Certifiably-Hot Unrecognizable Babe (CHUB).  CHUB is the hot mama that lives with me in this aging shell.  She remembers what it was like to be young, pretty, and desirable.  She would, if offered the options, choose sex over chocolate chip cookies.  She bemoans the fact that we have become quite round, white-haired, forgetful and nearly blind…in other words, invisible in our youth-obsessed society.  She also bemoans that fact that these days chocolate chip cookies ARE offered more frequently than sex.  She advocates for surgeries – gastric, plastic, and drastic.  Fortuntely, She is easily quieted, and if she does manage to speak her mind, people hear the voice but can’t figure out where it is coming from…after all, that kind of language wouldn’t come out of that sweet little granny over there.  I like her, but wish she’d come to terms with aging.

Recently, one of my students  explained that she often missed class because she couldn’t afford a babysitter for her children.  She showed me a picture of her 4 children and her live-in boyfriend, who looked sort of like Blake Shelton, if you squinted (a little), had been drinking (a lot) and you overlooked his rather large ears. Our conversation went something like this.

ME:  Cute kids.

TUB: Yeah, great looking litter.

CHUB:  He’s hot. What time is your class?  I’ll babysit.

ME:  There are some services offered by the college to help you with child care.  Here’s a brochure.

TUB:  You can’t afford a babysitter?  I know you smoke because you reek of nicotine, you’ve got a new tattoo, those highlights in your hair weren’t put there by Mother Nature, and your freakin’ fake nails are freshly done.  We’re paying for your stinking education, and probably supporting your entire household, yet you can’t even bother to show up because you can’t afford a baby sitter?  Why can’t Dumbo watch the spawn while you try to “improve” yourself?  You probably can’t afford a CLUE, either, can you?

CHUB:  He looks like Blake Shelton (did I mention that we are nearly blind and really like margaritas?).  What time is your class again?

Here’s another conversation, this time with my beloved Sweet Cheeks.

ME:  What do you want for dinner?

SWEET CHEEKS:  I don’t care.

TUB: Of course you don’t care, you think food is prepared by the food fairy.  For the last 31 years food just magically appeared in front of you at fairly regular intervals.  Do you know how impossible it is to figure out what YOUR sorry ass wants for dinner?  Why don’t YOU make dinner, Bucko?  The only thing you know how to make is reservations, that’s why.

CHUB (slyly):  I know something you could have….

ME:  Okay, I’ll see what I can put together.

SWEET CHEEKS:  Whatever you come up with will be fine.  I’m easy.

TUB:  Hah! Easy?  Sure, as along as it isn’t a fruit, or a vegetable, or most seafood or anything even remotely healthy for you – you’re easy all right you beer-guzzlin’, pizza-snarfin’, sausage-chompin’ slug.

CHUB:  (again, slyly with batted eye-lashes) Easy? now you’re talking!  I can think of a couple of things that could be put together….

SWEET CHEEKS:  Do we have any chocolate chip cookies?

Sometimes it takes a lot of effort to keep those two quiet.

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