The Newest Craze II

The newest craze has developed into Chubby Chicks Garage.  Reality TV as it sits does not hold a candle to what happens with us.  I would hope for a TV show but our language would have to be censored and people would think our antics were staged, which they wouldn’t be because you can’t make this stuff up.

A little background on the Chubby Chicks:

Me:  You all probably have a good idea of who I am from my stories so I will just add a few things that you may not know.  I am a list maker, I love crossing stuff off of a list, done, complete, yes!!  I am a perfectionist when it comes to projects, no drips, precise painting, the lines need to match up, etc.  I get caught up in the moment no matter what it is, buying, selling, story telling, laughing, you name it.  I have the patience of a saint when it comes to my partner in crime, always have, probably always will.  I think it’s because she severely lacks patience.  I’m starting to think I’m hard of hearing.  I am a smart alec and very very sarcastic.

Her:  She gets caught up in the moment, especially buying, selling and getting a good deal.  She has the ‘if it’s a good deal then I need to be the one that gets the good deal’ attitude, even if it’s something we probably can’t use.    She has a short temper and flies off the handle one second and is back to your friend the next.  It’s incredible to witness sometimes and sometimes it’s not so incredible when she flies off the handle at me.  She’s funny.  Her sense of humor matches mine and lots of times that can be dirty and raunchy.  We’ve both been bartenders for a long time, that definitely gets into your personality.  She mumbles and talks to me while she is walking away.  She does too many things at once so doesn’t listen well and the story is usually mixed up. She is ADD, she will start something, not finish it, move to the next, not finish it and move to the next.  This too is entertaining to watch.  I end up going behind her to finish stuff up.

With both of us having the trait of getting caught up in the moment you can imagine what our ‘to do’ pile is like.  We were short on dressers after our sale, we are no longer short on dressers…..at all.  Our pile of undone projects has taken over our entire work area.  With refurbishing and painting furniture you don’t have to be a perfectionist and my partner knows this. So the first coat of paint is sloppy, and that’s okay….with me…if she does it.  It’s not okay with me if I do it.  Because she mumbles, I say “what?” a lot and it irritates her. Sometimes I do it just to get under her skin. It’s my sick and twisted little way of getting back at her for something…or nothing I suppose.

We manage to get ourselves into situations that are hilarious….at least after the fact.  The other day we were bringing the skinny guy’s (her husband)  truck home.  His truck has a broken small side window that’s fixed with cardboard and duct tape (classy, yet effective).  We call it the McGyver truck because it needs a key made out of a popsicle stick and two pieces of wire, or something like that, in order to start.  I believe you also have to walk around it twice, jump up and down three times and say a small prayer before getting in to start it.  Once we dropped off the McGyver truck my partner in crime got in my car and put her head in her hands.  I immediately said “what did you do?”  She looked at me and said “drive, I can’t talk or I’ll cry”. So of course being the supportive friend I am I started driving and immediately started talking “who called, did someone die, did you pee your pants, I can’t help you if I don’t know what the problem is”.  She’s yelling at me in the passenger seat “shut up, don’t make me laugh, this isn’t funny?”  I said “well, it must be your laughing” to which she replied “I’m laughing because you’re an ass”.

After a bought of laughing and a couple of miles down the road she said “I locked ALL my keys in the truck”.  I laughed hysterically and said “why didn’t you take the duct tape off the broken window and grab them?”  She looked at me as if I had grown a third arm and her face turned red with embarrassment.  She looked at me and said “turn around and go back, shut up and don’t tell anyone about this”.  It took me about 15 minutes to stop giggling and her to stop laughing and crying.  It took me about 30 minutes to tell someone about it.

Here’s to many more adventures from Chubby Chicks Garage.

 

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Black Friday

Black Friday came and went, one of the worst days of the year.  I’m not a fan of shopping anyway and then the gates are opened for all crazy shoppers to be even more craz.  Now, I’m not one to back down from a challenge but I would rather stick my tongue to a light pole in January in Minnesota than go shopping on Black Friday.

To me it’s like the county fair, a parade of the mutants.  Those people who only go out once a year, some of them probably haven’t seen the light of day since last year.  I have no idea where they come from but there are thousands of them.  Every year one of my friends tries to talk me into going.  No way.  Not on your life.  Been there, done that, barely survived.

It happened at Kohl’s, which I think was our second stop of the day.  I had already broken out into a rash and the cold sweats from the first stop but I was going to be a trooper and find the joy like so many others do.  I was with my best friend, shockingly enough, we’re still best friends.  We parted ways and I grabbed a cart because I was so confident that was the place where I would find all the deals.  Kohl’s would turn my attitude around about Black Friday shopping.  That was wishful thinking.

We parted ways, not by choice, the crowd swallowed us up and we were separated, no worries, this was going to be good.  I started filling my cart with a few goodies, clothing, candles, a pillow.  I started heading for the checkout when a lady snatched my pillow right out of my cart.  We made eye contact and the fight began, I yelled, she yelled back, I grabbed the pillow and hit her with it, she screamed….then I have no idea what happened and I was out by the car.

That’s where my friend found me.  I had not purchased any items and I was banned from the store like I ban someone from the bar who’s had too much to drink.  So we left and went home.  There was no way she was bringing me to another store.  Black Friday has been off-limits ever since.  I apparently cannot be trusted.

As I was listening to post Black Friday conversations this year I was glad I didn’t go.  Several people told stories of items getting ripped out of their carts.  I would have most likely needed bail money.

 

The Joys of Bartending IX

It’s been quite some time, sorry about that.  Even though it’s been ages, that doesn’t mean I haven’t been writing things down or that nothing funny has been happening.   What it means is that life has been crazy busy and something has to get pushed to the side.  Unfortunately that’s been writing for me.  I’m going to try my hardest to be better…but I digress.

This last weekend was terribly entertaining as far as bartending was concerned.  It’s also much more entertaining after the fact then it was during the chaos.  Here’s how Friday night went for us.

It was a typical full moon night…..WEIRD.  Early in the night nothing specific stood out but the vibe was weird, the crowd was weird and people were drinking…. a lot!  My bartending partner and I would look at each other and shake our heads or shrug our shoulders every now and then to prove we knew, we just knew it was strange.  Her and I were even running into each other behind the bar more than normal, it was one of those days we were acting like we’d never worked together.  Even our karaoke singers were all over the board, normally we’re middle of the road with talent but this particular night we had amazing singers and then those singers that made you want to jab yourself in the ear with a sharp pencil.  Like I say to my customers “always applaud, for those who are bad, you applaud because it’s over”.

Around midnight the downhill slide reached warp speed.  One of our regulars who is normally very well-behaved became not so well-behaved.  On a normal night if we tell him it’s time to go home, he says ‘okay’ and promptly leaves and walk home.  On this not so normal night he said ‘okay’ and walked out the front door……only to immediately return through the back door.  Rinse and repeat seven times!!!  Yes I said SEVEN.  He had his eye on a woman he thought he was going to take home.  I’m pretty sure I don’t have to go into detail here when I say that would not have turned out so great for him.  It would have been like stepping up to the plate at a major league game with a wet dishcloth rather than a bat.  Finally my bartending partner raised her voice to a thunderous level, took him by the arm and escorted him to the corner and watched him cross the street.  I think we saved him from humiliation by making him leave without her.  He should be thanking us.

About the time we got done dealing with him, karaoke wrapped up and we were discussing the ‘weirdness’ of the night with the DJ, three guys walked in who had clearly been elsewhere for a few.  One of them is a regular and the other two we had seen before but were unfamiliar with any of their drunken habits.  They had a beer and the regular asked for a shot.  I said “no, no hard alcohol for you”, as usual, the regular agreed and we went on our merry way……until one of them wasn’t merry anymore.

It started with this kid accusing us (all of us, even his friends) of stealing his $50 bill.  We all stood around as he searched every pocket, more than once, and finally dug it out.  No apology, no nothing, just attitude.   Finally we had enough of him and asked him to leave…..now this is where all hell breaks loose.

We made him leave out the back door, he came in the front.  We made him leave out the front door, he came in the back.  Rinse and repeat too many times to count.  I would guess about the eighth or ninth time he started calling me a retard very loudly and over and over again.  Now, I don’t want to get physical with anyone but I will if I have to.  My hundred pound partner escorts him out the back door once more and tells him not to come back.  We spotted him walking around the building so I was waiting for him at the front door with my hands on his hips.

He opened the door, stepped in, saw me standing there and threw himself on the floor and started throwing a temper tantrum.  I would have started giggling here if I wasn’t so mad so I said “get off the floor and get out, just because we throw you out the back door, doesn’t mean you get to come back in the front door”.   About the time my lecture was complete a new song came on the juke box and no kidding, he looked up at me and said “oooohh, I love this song” and started playing air guitar while laying on the floor.  Again, hilarious now, not so funny then.

I put my head in my hands so I wouldn’t scream at the top of my lungs and he got up and got in my face.  He pulled back his arm like he was going to hit me and I said “please, please hit me”.  I’m pretty sure his buddy yelled “don’t hit her” so he ran to his buddy at the other end of the bar.  My partner then herded him out the back door once again, that time he grabbed onto everything he possibly could which resulted in tearing a bunch of posters off the wall.  One of the regulars followed her out for support.  I picked up torn pieces of posters and thought I better check on the situation outside.  When I got out there my partner said “grab the phone, we’re calling the cops”.  I asked if she was okay, she said “yes, he’s just very verbally abusive and called me the word you never call a woman” so I grabbed my phone and told the guy I was going to call the police.  He started running across the street, lost his shoe, fell and was rolling around in the middle of the street when I dialed 911.  That’s where he stayed, screaming and swearing while I was on the phone with dispatch.

I had to go back in because there were customers still in the bar, my partner and the regular stayed outside to wait for the police.  Once the police got there the kid tried to run and ended up in a fenced in apartment complex so couldn’t get away.  He did attempt to stand very still so the cops couldn’t see him….that didn’t work.  Once the spotlight was on him and the officer got out of the car, the kid threw his shoe at him which promptly got him arrested.

I was tending to matters inside which consisted of attempting to calm one of our giggling regulars down who couldn’t seem to control herself, we now call her the giggle patrol.  The officer came in to question me and the giggle patrol was right behind me giggling uncontrollably.  The officer asked my name and of course I had to be a smarty pants and make a comment about being one of America’s Most Wanted.  The giggle patrol only got worse and we struggled through the questioning.  Finally I told the officer “I really wanted to run him over when he was in the middle of the street”.  The officer looked at me, smiled and said “I would have looked the other way”.

I’m thankful he had a sense of humor at 1:45 AM after what I can only assume was a long Friday night for him too.

The Newest Craze

I’m not sure if anyone else is like this or if it’s just me and a few of my friends but it seems like there’s always some new hobby or addiction. Lately there’s definitely a new addiction for me and it’s something I didn’t expect.

Before I tell you what this new craze in my life is I should recap some things about me so you can understand why this is so unexpected.

  1. I despise shopping…………of any sort.
  2. I loathe going to garage sales. Why would I want someone else’s crap when I have too much of my own?
  3. I waste a majority of my patience on people so I have none left for myself.
  4. I am sleep deprived and that may be the understatement of the year. I think my nightly average over the last five years is about four hours.
  5. I start things and don’t finish them. I have a cross stitch project from 1984 in my sewing basket – I sure hope my brother Dan still isn’t waiting for that. I have about 100 half-written stories that started back in college and I have a gallon of paint for my basement that’s been unopened for two years.
  6. I’m not “creative’ in an arts and crafts way like my sister and my mom are.

Ok, now back to this new fad of mine…..

About four years ago my sister and I loaded up my Chevy Blazer with ‘stuff’ from my parent’s place.  A dresser, a church bench, a piano bench, a night stand, a couple of trunks, some crates.  You name it, I took it, loaded it into the Blazer and away we went….to bring her to the airport, that’s right, she got to go home to New York and I got to bring the stuff home with me to ‘redo’.  I forgot to mention the green church bench was bungied to the top of the Blazer.  Oh yeah, we were hot, laughed the whole way.  I got it all home and the stuff I didn’t immediately use went into my basement with a pile of other projects.

Fast forward two years and the flood happened.  3.5 feet of brown water from the sewer systems of Superior, Wisconsin.  The piano bench didn’t survive, a table didn’t make it, the church bench was on its way to the dumpster when the neighbor salvaged it and the dresser was already next to the dumpster when one of my girlfriends said “oh, you’re not throwing that away”.  I said “listen, the back is ruined, the bottoms of the drawers are ruined and it’s soaking wet”.   She said “you’ve put too much work into it to let it go, we can replace the back and drawer bottoms”.

Fast forward two more years.  The same girlfriend had been talking about all these refurbishing projects she’s been doing.  I mentioned that I really should get that dresser done but I had to throw away all my stuff including the sander, etc. because of the flooding.  She said “bring it over, we’ll do it here”.

And that my friends started my latest craze.  I have now started refurbishing stuff.  I find the solitude and concentration on one single thing until completion peaceful and I love seeing a project from start to finish; however, the longer the project takes the shorter my patience gets and I want to move on to something else.   That’s not good because she’s very ADD and has 10 to 12 things going at once.  I do my best to be the voice of reason.  For those of you who know me, ‘voice of reason’ is not on my resume.

Here’s my first finished project.  This started out as a very homely blue dresser.

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Reality TV has nothing on what goes on when we’re working on our projects.  There’s yelling, there’s swearing, there’s paint and stain everywhere, there’s hysterical laughter and all of this is happening in a single car garage and we’re attempting not to disturb her husband’s motorcycle.   There’s now garage saling and flea market stopping. Craigslist browsing and wheeling and dealing before we’re done.  I have become my parents.  I have completely become my parents.  And it scares the crap out of me because I don’t have three sheds and a garage to fill with things.    My goal is to buy, redo, sell.  Quick and painless.  Ha ha, if we get to that point, it will be a miracle.

Just this last Saturday we took my car on our little mission because ‘we find the good deals when we have the car’ and come home empty when we take her truck.  Well, we not only took her brother with, we found the deals.  By the time we got home we had the trunk bungied shut and both passengers had items in their lap.  This is what she looked like in the back seat.

 

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The stuff we found for three and four dollars was incredible.  The hardest part of the day was hiding it in the single garage so her husband doesn’t notice.  I know that  he’s not that naive, he knows exactly what goes on, he just turns the other cheek.  Plus, I think he secretly likes it because he’s always willing to help when we’re in need of a man’s opinion or help.

That was not the first time it happened like that with my car.  Last time we took my car we had to call her daughter to bring the truck because we found the mother lode of all sales.  Needless to say we filled the car and the truck.  That day my passenger had a bar stool on her lap hanging out the window .  I didn’t think about taking a picture that day though, we were laughing too hard and bribing her son to let us use his shed to store stuff.  There’s something wrong with us and we have no trouble telling each other that every day.

We’ve been trying to think of a name for our little venture and her husband always says “don’t forget about the skinny guy”.   Perhaps someone will put us in our own TV show.  No unlimited budget, no nice clothes, just real life, maybe slightly censored when things get really bad.

Here’s my second project that I did and I needed the skinny guy’s help on.

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There’s some sort of story every day we work together.  Something breaks, spills, gets lost  or gets ruined.  One or both of us have paint on our face, has had a tantrum or is sunburned.  There is usually uncontrollable laughter or an all out brawl  but at the end of it all we’re still friends and we get something accomplished.  Even if it’s only to move stuff around so we look organized.

The Sauna

Why is it so hard for people to understand the concept of a sauna? That’s sow-na for you non-Finlanders. Say it with me……SOW NA. That’s it, one more time….SOW NA. For the record, Webster was not a Finlander. Okay, now that we’ve got that straight.

I’ve been dealing with the questions, the looks, the snubbed noses and the non-understanding of the sauna most of my life. I grew up in a town where probably 75% of the people had a sauna or at least access to one on a regular basis so there shouldn’t have been questions or concerns but there was. So here it is, my thoughts on the glorious sauna.

The sauna is a cure all. Pretty much no matter what ails you, the sauna will cure it. Sunburn, yep, sure does. Runny nose, yep, sure does. Headache, yep, sure does. Sleeplessness, yep, sure does. Crabbiness, yep, sure does. I’m not sure about constipation or diarrhea, I’ve never actually tested out either theory, that’s one you can test on your own if you want.

The sauna at the gym is not a real sauna. You can’t throw water on the rocks. It’s a steam room and it’s a decent alternative if you don’t have a real sauna available. The sauna at the gym should not be taken naked, not once, not ever.

A ‘real’ sauna should be taken naked. Yes, I said naked. Naked as the day you were born. Naked as a jaybird. However you want to look at it, it’s NAKED. It’s a bath. It’s sacred. It’s life altering. It’s relaxing. Be naked.

Don’t ask me about public saunas. I have no idea what goes on in there and if you do know what goes on, that isn’t going on in all saunas.

After you are done throwing water on the rocks and sweating all the toxins out of your body, you bathe. Either under a shower or from a pan that you’ve scooped clean cold and hot water into to use as bath water. You wash up while your pores are open, head out to the bench, chair, couch and relax for several more minutes. Sometimes you even fall asleep because you feel so good. Uber clean.

There are times you go to someone else’s house to take a sauna. That’s okay, it’s perfectly acceptable. Yes, that’s like going to the neighbors to take a bath but it’s okay, you may not have wanted to start your sauna that day or you just plain didn’t have one at home. Growing up, we tended to go elsewhere for sauna in the winter, since our sauna was in a building of its own and it wasn’t electric.

Sauna can be a social thing. More so with the men in my family, two or more people will sauna together. I remember the first time an ex of mine was invited to sauna with the boys. He looked at me as if the Deliverance theme song started to play in his head. I explained to him he could say no and it wasn’t some sort of initiation into the family. I also explained it’s just what they do, there’s no judging, no weirdness, just conversation and sometimes a beer.

Yes, there were times when we would sauna as a group, with bathing suits on, and jump in a snow bank or a cold lake after we had poured lots of water on the rocks. Not so great for the old ticker but we were young. I’ve even done that when I wasn’t so young I guess. Keeps your blood flowing or something like that.

Saunaing as a couple is allowed and encouraged. It’s a nice relaxing time to spend together, talk or don’t talk, whichever floats your boat. However, extracurricular activities are not encouraged unless both parties are very accustomed to the sauna. Overexertion can easily lead to heart palpitations, shortness of breath or dizziness. I do not have the official Finnish doctor’s word on this one but I’ve heard stories.

Fibbing to ‘sauna rookies’ is encouraged. For those of us veterans, it is a must to ‘mess’ with the rookies. We tell them that if you pour cold water on the rocks the steam will be cooler. Tell them this as often as it takes for them to finally get it.

You will experience things you will never encounter in your bathtub or shower. Such as: scalding hot shampoo/conditioner (always leave it on the lower bench), soap that is literally melted to the bench, again, leave it in the dish on a lower bench, same goes for razors and any other paraphernalia you may have in there. It’s hot. Just to remind you, it’s hot! Say it with me, IT’S HOT!

Antics are not always encouraged but happen nonetheless. My sister used to make me sit on the floor. The floor of a sauna is not hot, it’s actually fairly cool and rather creepy. It was my punishment for her having to take care of me I think. A friend told me that they used to put the hot metal ladle (you know, to scoop the water onto the rocks) on another’s bare butt cheek, ummm, ouch. That didn’t happen at my house thank goodness. Plugging the chimney while siblings or friends were in there to turn the sauna into a ‘smoker’ was another of my friend’s antics. We didn’t do that one either.

A sauna is a way of life, a culture, a special occasion, almost a religion in some households. We crave a sauna like a fat kid craves Twinkies. Don’t judge, embrace. Don’t assume, ask. Don’t knock it, try it.

The Joys of Bartending VIII

There’s been some interesting things while bartending lately so I’ll give you a few bullet points of the highlights…..or lowlights, however you prefer to look at it. They’re highlights to me.

We got a complaint a couple weeks ago that a guy was being really weird to a group of girls out for a bachelorette party. He was saying things like “do you need me to protect you?”, “are you okay, I’m in the military and can save you”. Eventually he got to be a little too much so I told him he had to pay his tab and leave. As I went to run his tab, I got busy so asked my bartending partner to run his credit card because I asked him to leave. When she went to give him his card back he wanted to know her employee ID number because he was going to call the Department of Defense on us. I really hope the Department of Defense is working on more important things than bartenders who keep their bars clear of riff raff.

The same night the Department of Defense situation happened we had a couple using the women’s restroom for something other than what it’s intended for. The couple had just met about 30 minutes prior to last call and there must have been a sense of urgency and the women’s restroom was the place of choice to take care of said urgency. My bartending partner walked in to use the facilities and had to tell them to put their pants on and get out. I’m glad it wasn’t me that discovered them, I probably would have messed with them a bit before telling them to get out but that’s just me.

At 6:00 PM recently we had to ask a couple to not return to the bar because the wife was performing…..let’s call them…..indecent acts, in the bar. Immediately when they walked in we knew something was going to happen. They were clearly hopped up on something not so legal but well behaved…at first. After one drink, brandy neat, she started talking to one of the regulars, the bar was fairly empty so all eyes were on her when she got up to talk to a guy sitting at a table. It wasn’t long before she turned around and pulled down her pants. It was truly like attending a sporting event, first a hush goes over the crowd and then a collective ‘ohhhh’ and even some added ‘my god’ or ‘lord’ at the end of the ‘ohhhh’. So as any good bartenders would do, we continued to watch her antics with the rest of the crowd and listened to their whispers until we got up the nerve to approach her. The kicker to the mooning is that she never really pulled up her pants all the way so we all had a front row seat to observe the pink lace thong she was wearing and one bare cheek. It didn’t take long for the guy at the table to pack up and leave and oddly the couple followed him to the parking lot. I don’t even want to speculate about why but an employee of the bar went out and told them they weren’t welcome back in the bar.

I had a regular patron go into a coughing fit one day. He’s probably in his late sixties and was really sounding bad. I looked at the few people that were in the bar, looked at him and said “Don’t you dare die on my watch, if you do I’m going to drag you into the men’s bathroom and pretend I didn’t notice you.” The laughing didn’t help his cough at all but he survived thank goodness.

A few weeks ago, I once again wore a pair of jeans to work that I obviously shouldn’t have. Early in the shift as I was bending over to put cases of beer on the dolly I felt the release of pressure at my left back pocket. I knew it was bad, it had to be. I went back out to the bar and immediately two of the regulars knew something was up because my eyes were watering from the laughing and the embarrassment. I said “well, I have a situation and you need to tell me how bad it is”. I turned around and pulled up my shirt to show them and they immediately doubled over laughing. Thank goodness they were the only two sitting at the bar. After a few minutes of uncontrollable laughter they both said “It’s bad, you have to find a new pair of pants.” I had to leave my bartending partner on her own and hurry home to change my pants. I made record time and when I came back one of the two at the bar said “Did you get your pants changed?” I said “Yup, I’m good to go.” He looked at me, looked down, looked at me again and said “Then you might want to pull up your zipper.” That caused another bought of uncontrollable laughter, at my expense, which I’m okay with.

A guy came in while I was working and was a talker. After rambling on for a few minutes he said “What’s your name?” I said “Susan”. He said “Nice to meet you, I’m Joe.” As I look over at one of my regulars he mouths “Susan?” to me. I just smiled and went about my business. Joe eventually left and my regular says “What the hell are you telling him your name is Susan for?” I said “When I don’t want someone to know my real name I’m Susan.” He starts laughing and said, “Someone asked the bartender the other day when Susan worked and she said “Oh we don’t have a Susan here”, now I get what’s happening, that’s funny.” I just smiled, shrugged and walked away.

Winter is Still Here

It’s April 28th and winter is still here.  There’s definitely some kinky stuff going on over at Old Man Winter’s RV.  I was on my way to have a little chat with him and Mother Nature but he was running around the yard in leather chaps and Mother Nature was running after him with a whip and what looked like a can of motor oil.  I turned around and went home.  It seems they’re never going to move along.  Who would have thought their choice of a permanent home was Wisconsin?  They’re livin’ on beer, cheese and love and we can’t do anything about it.

We’ve had two days of rain, snow, rain, sleet, rain and ice.  I worked yesterday and spent the night where I had been working because there was no sense in taking my life in my hands by going out on the sheet of ice they call roads around here.  All day today we listened to the 40 to 60 mph winds and rain hit the window.  Would have been a great day to snuggle on the couch, do nothing, watch a few movies and eat until we couldn’t move but work had to happen and life goes on even if the weather stinks.

As I look at not only my own Facebook posts but the posts of others I realize we’re all doing a lot of sulking and complaining about the weather.  The worst thing is we can’t do anything about it!!  I’ve decided I’m going to try to concentrate on things I can do something about and stop being negative about the weather because that carries over into other things.  So here’s my plan for the next week, the next month, the next three months……because it is going to be a chilly summer here in the Northland.

  1. I’m going to rock this chair tonight and watch The Voice like nobody’s business and I’m going to be happy about it.  Then I’m going to watch Revenge from last night.
  2. I’m going to cook.  When it’s nice outside I don’t feel like cooking or I grill everything so I’m going to use the oven.  Tonight I made stuffed chicken breasts and baby red potatoes.  I think enchiladas are on the docket for one night this week as well.  Along with cooking the things I’m comfortable with I’m going to try new things.
  3. I’m going to take this chance at not being able to go outside to get some work done for not only my day job but for Following Funny as well.  I have a ‘to do’ list a mile long for both and I really could use to get as caught up as possible.
  4. I’m going to keep my house in order.  Get the basement organized and painted and get rid of some things that are cluttering the place up.  I don’t want another critter to make its way to my basement to cause me issues.
  5. I’m going to organize my notebooks of stories, chicken scratches, notes and funny findings and decide exactly what to do with them.  I have all this funny stuff hidden everywhere, including my head and no plan on what to do with it.  Watch out.
  6. I’m going to travel south to warmer weather.  By south I mean anywhere from 15 to 500 miles south.  When it’s cold here, it’s warmer within about 15 minutes so my goal is to go find the warmth of the sun.   My friends who live south of me just panicked as they realized I may be visiting more than usual this summer.  Haha, get your guest rooms ready!

In other words, I’m going to stop bitching, get my shit together and make the most of something I have no control over.

 

How to Find the Cute Single Guys

After years and years of research I have finally figured out one of the most perplexing questions for single women.  Where to find the nice looking, single guy who’s the right age and who has potential to be long-term.

As most of you know from past stories I can meet people anywhere, including sitting next to him on a plane.  Although that only lasted a couple of years it was a great experience and he’s a good guy, that relationship taught me a lot about myself.

The real answer to the question Where do you meet a hot eligible man, is actually ANYWHERE.  My answer to that question is a little different these days.

I think the answer is this:  You can find a cute eligible man by leaving the house when you look like hell, don’t feel good and don’t much care.  I believe I have probably missed out on a few good men because every time I go out of the house when I really shouldn’t I see lots of potential.

It’s almost like there’s a Batman symbol out there when a single woman leaves the house looking like she’s been drug through the mud and this symbol tells the eligible guys to go to Walgreen’s, Wal-Mart, Target or wherever it is she’s headed.

It happened to me today.  Pneumonia is visiting me again and I am currently the poster child for a “Go to the Doctor” public service announcement.  I did not go to work today, I worked at home.  I did not get out of my pajamas today, I couldn’t be bothered.  I didn’t put my contacts in because it seemed to be too much work.  I did take a shower at one point though thinking it would make me feel better……it didn’t.

Anyway, around 6:30 I decided if I was going to make it through The Voice and get some sleep for tomorrow’s 8:30 AM meeting I needed to pick up some cough drops and something to knock me out.  The task was daunting and I couldn’t be bothered.  I left the house in my pajama top, sans bra, capri yoga pants with holes in the rear seam, running shoes with no socks, glasses and a zip up fleece.  It was bad, very bad.

When I arrived at Walgreen’s there they were, they had followed the Bat Signal and there they were.  One held the door for me.  For no other reason then he felt sorry for me I’m sure and wanted to get a closer look at this complete mess on two feet.  The rest of them were inside milling around, pretending to shop.   Needless to say they all scattered and retreated once they got a good look at me.  Another opportunity missed probably.

The best part was I ran into a friend and his question to me was “Rough weekend?”  I said “Pneumonia” and skeedaddled as fast as possible.  I doubt he believed me.  He also probably called his wife on the way home and said “Have you heard from Peg lately, we should probably check on her, I think she’s having issues.”

I should really start to care or I’m going to be the crazy cat lady that lives at the end of the block.  The kids will be double dog daring each other to go trick or treating at my house.  And I don’t even like cats!!

Here’s to finding the hot guys when all you are is a hot mess.

Door Ajar

One of the smartest things I’ve ever done in my life is surround myself with funny people.  Although I’m usually reminded of it daily, sometimes I’m REALLY reminded of it.  This morning was one of those times.

On my way to work I got a phone call from a college friend, we’ll call him Todd.  Panic crept through me…he never calls in the morning, something must be wrong…..well, nothing was wrong…..in fact, everything was right.

Me:  “Hello”.

Todd:  “I had to call someone and you’re it”, followed by uncontrollable laughter.

I immediately started to giggle.  Not only because his laugh is contagious but because if he’s laughing that hard it had to be good.  I will do my best to relay the story.

Todd took the day off from work today to take care of a bunch of things, oil change, dentist, etc.  You know, the things that are almost impossible to get done after our own work hours.  The first thing on his list was an oil change and check up for his truck at the local garage.

He waited patiently for about 30 minutes while the mechanic did his thing.  The mechanic finally came in and asked if the Check Engine light had been causing problems.  According to Todd the light hadn’t been on and he hadn’t been experiencing any trouble with it.  The mechanic nodded and walked back in the garage.  After a few minutes Todd thought he’d check on the situation so went to see what was happening.

The mechanic was looking at his diagnostic and said “Well, I got the Check Engine light figured out, now the Door Ajar light won’t go off.”  At this point of the story Todd said “Peg, I immediately looked at the mechanic, then over to the open door of the truck, then back at the mechanic and my eyes started tearing up from holding back my laughter.  I’m no genius but I would think the Door Ajar light was on because the door was actually ajar.”   Those two sentences of his story took a few minutes because we were both laughing and he was telling me in detail how he didn’t want to insult the mechanic by outright laughing at him and how hard it was to hold it all together.

Todd said he  kept it together the best he could for about five minutes while the mechanic hemmed and hawed while attempting to fix the Door Ajar light.  Todd said he kept looking at the mechanic and the open door of the truck wondering if he was the one that was missing something.  Finally he couldn’t take it anymore and said to the mechanic “Perhaps the light is on because the door is open”.  At this point the mechanic looked at Todd, looked at the door, got in the truck and shut the door.  The mechanic sat in the truck for a few minutes, got out and said the truck was finished.

Apparently the mechanic never said anything about the “mishap” and sent Todd on his way.  Through tears and giggles he told me that when he got to the garage the mechanic was playing solitaire on his computer after he said he could “squeeze him in” for an appointment on the phone yesterday.  We both howled and cried.  Todd thought he should have been given a discount because he actually fixed the Door Ajar light of the blunder but no such luck.  It was the best phone call I’ve had in a long time.

I got the privilege of telling the story to coworkers shortly after the phone call which helped get everyone’s day jump started.

Todd ended our conversation by saying he couldn’t post it on Facebook because it’s a small town but that I needed to write a story about it.  I felt obligated to follow his wishes.  Here’s to mistakes similar to that we all make and those who get entertainment out of them.

The Plunger

Recently on vacation a 20-year-old announced 5 minutes after our arrival at the condo that she needed a plunger, at that moment I realized I really like her.  She took a possible embarrassing moment and hit it head on.  I also realized she is probably an anomaly, not many of the younger generation would admit to that.

Of course I took that funny situation and thought about how it could be a story. It then occurred to me that no one actually taught me how to use a plunger.  Change a tire, sure, but I’ll tell you people will need to use a plunger more than they’ll need to change a tire in their life.  Here are my tips and tricks about plunging and plungers.

Buying the plunger: it’s always great to purchase the ‘bathroom set’ which means the plunger and the toilet brush match, but it’s not the smart thing to do, ever.  The reasons have become apparent when I’ve been standing in front of the toilet with the water to the rim full of paper and other unmentionables.

First of all, the handle of the ‘cute’ plunger is never long enough, your hands are way too close to that water.  You can’t get a good grip and really put your weight into it with a handle that short.

It’s inevitable that the ‘cute’ plunger will turn inside out and get stuck like that during the plunge.  There’s nothing worse than looking at the inside out plunger with wide eyes knowing that at any second it’s going to ‘right’ itself and splash all over, and no one wants what’s in that toilet all over them.

The shape of the cute plunger doesn’t even work with the toilet.  It’s short and wide….kinda like me….and it never actually seals the opening of the toilet to get good suction.  That makes for an unnecessarily long plunge.  Not something I look forward to.

Now you have the right plunger and it’s the ugliest thing you’ve ever seen.  It’s probably black and yellow and looks menacing.  It’s not something you like having as an accessory in your bathroom but it works, and it works good.  It has to be used correctly though.

When using the plunger you have to REALLY use the plunger.  The plunger can’t be approached with any sort of tentativeness.  Grab it, carefully submerge it in the crappy water (pun intended), position it over the hole, hands apart, position yourself over the handle so you can put your weight into it and push with gusto.  This should be a very quick process if done right.  If this job makes you break a sweat and makes your arms sore you’re doing it wrong, have the wrong equipment or you need to see a doctor for whatever it is that just happened in there.  Repeat until the blessed event of water receding happens.

The few times in my life when I’ve used a plunger I’ve also needed some sort of face mask.  I prefer a dish towel wrapped around my face like I’m ready to rob a bank.  Plunging the toilet is one of those jobs that gives me the feeling of throwing up even before I start.  I should probably invest in one of those butcher aprons, you know the ones that are basically made out of rubber and gloves that go to the elbows.

Make sure your plunger is in a place where it’s easy to find.  If company happens to clog your toilet you could save them the embarrassment of having to ask where the plunger is.  Nothing changes the direction of a get together like a bad bathroom incident.  You don’t want someone having a Dumb and Dumber moment and not being able to do anything about it.