Friday, May 30, 2008

The Luck

Recently, we received a letter from Toyota talking possible rust on the frame of our Tacoma. In true Gail and Workaholic fashion, we didn’t really read it, and sort of just tossed it aside. My dad meanwhile, also gets said letter, and also does the same. (gee…where do I get it??) He does though, take his truck to his trusty mechanic to get a once over. Trusty mechanic says, “Umm…you have a hole rusted through the frame of your truck. Really shouldn’t leave town, much less pull a fishing boat to Canada with your 2 grandsons as precious cargo.” Oh, the luck. You see, my dad’s truck is in pristine condition, with the exception of 2 holes in the frame. (I guess that is bad) The tires are good, the engine is great, the transmission is fabulous, and hasn’t gone through a single clutch. Our truck, on the other hand, could use a little replacing.

We acquired the truck from my brother-in-law, it was his first vehicle when he turned 16, a sparkly, shiny, brand spanking new purple Toyota Tacoma. He washed it on a bi-weekly basis, barely allowed shoes in it, much less my husband, much less ever let him drive it. So you can imagine his reluctance to let us acquire it. You see, Workaholic is a little hard on things. His mother once told me that he never actually grew out of a pair of shoes as a toddler, he destroyed them first. He would take apart radios and give up trying to put them back together. I am fairly convinced the reason why he knew how to fix all the holes in the drywall and doors that his over exuberant roommates in college created during Monday Night Raw was because he would do these things himself as a child and he had to fix them before mom found out. He knew how to spackle by the time he was 4.

Anyway, our truck is just vulgar. Being a passenger in it could make an astronaut get carsick with the rough ride. The cupholder is permanently stuck out over the radio, (instead of being able to push it back in the dashboard) because of the effect of sticky Pepsi that spilled one too many times. I tried vacuuming it once, but the dirt that lives in the carpet refused to move. There is also a fine layer of dust or dirt that coats every surface. When you pat the seat, a cloud comes up. (Oooo, pretty). The dashboard, I discovered last night, is also spotted with Red Bull, and there is Pepsi splashed across the windshield, which BTW, is cracked. The CD player and tape deck stopped working years ago, also the victim of too much Pepsi consumption. You can have either hot heat or cold A/C, nothing in-between. And the brakes squeal. But the damn thing starts every time, can pull a boat, and can plow through a couple of feet of snow, no problem. And apparently, there is no rusted holes in our frame warranting Toyota to give us 150% of Kelly Blue Book Suggested Retail Value of excellent (HAHAHAHA!!!) condition. Had we been forced to sell it back to Toyota, it would have sucked buying a new truck, along with the subsequent car payment, but how nice would it be to ride in a vehicle that you don’t have to shower every time you get out of it?

In the meantime, my poor dad has to buy a new truck and give back his perfectly good (with the exception of 2 giant holes in the frame) 11 year old pick ‘em up, and hopes to get it in time for Canada. All manual, 4 cylinder transmission, 2 wheel drive of glorious new Tacoma. At least it’ll pull a boat without cracking in half.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

So a friend of mine through work just had his first baby. Well, I guess his wife just had her first baby, but potato patato. They got an ultrasound done at around 18 weeks and were delighted to find out that they were having a baby girl. (mental note, if I want to find out what I am having…wait two more weeks to the 20 week ultrasound) Even though they both thought they saw something on the screen, the doctor was sure, and that thing? Just the umbilical cord. Two weeks ago, she had another ultrasound done…and guess what? Not just the umbilical cord. Yeah…it’s a boy. Yay!!

Can you imagine? The poor guy, (of course I feel sorry for him, even though it was his wife who had to go through the pain of delivery), had to re-do the nursery and figure out what the heck to do with all the pink crap they got. They are very popular people, and had not one, not two, but three baby showers. Mucho pink. Because everyone knew they were having a girl. He has a very rational view on it…they’ll have more kids; surely one of them will be of the female variety. And if not?? The poor youngest child will just have to be gay.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Subway angst

Last night, I had the longest Subway experience ever. Workaholic and I were hungry, but I didn’t want the grease of Redamaks, and he did, so I am quite sure that he will never let me forget this. We decide to stop at the Subway in Benton Harbor, about a block or two from Lake Michigan. It was probably close to 9 at night, but there really is just no excuse.

When we pulled up, there were already 3 boys walking in ahead of us, and 2 in there, already eating. The 3 boys got 4 sandwiches. Which took 25 minutes to make. In the 25 minutes I had to wait, I spent my time observing said boys. They were teenagers, and rich. (when the first one got his sandwich after 5 minutes and left, it was in a nice black Cadillac CTS) They were each wearing an item of plaid. One was a shirt, the other shorts, the third was wearing plaid shoes, and the fourth, I have to give him credit, it took me a while to figure it out, but his wallet was plaid. Must not have wanted to conform too much. They were not rowdy, or impolite, but I decided that I didn’t like them, and neither did Workaholic. We were justified. (which, BTW, is because while Slow Boy, my name for the guy behind the counter, was in the middle of making my sandwich, plaid shoe boy decided that he wanted a cup for a Coke. Slow Boy panicked for a moment before telling plaid shoe boy that he’d have to wait, and pay, for the cup which was subsequently stolen from behind the counter. Hey, kid! You had your chance!! Be thirsty!) I almost went off on him, but I was too focused on watching Slow Boy putting lettuce on my sandwich.

Slow Boy was the only one working, (as evidenced by the complete lack of sandwich making supplies and the trash can that was sitting out in the middle of the restaurant) and I think (hope) he was new. It took him a minute and a half to put on the plastic gloves. He then spoke very softly asking me what I assumed was, what kind of sandwich could he get me? No, that wasn’t it, because when I did tell him my order, he just stared at me, and then said, “Oh, you want wheat bread?” Yes, with turkey (which had to be repeated twice, because apparently, his short term memory was so short, he forgot what I wanted between the time he turned around and got the bread, and set it on the table) and American cheese. “And what kind of cheese would you like?” Seriously??? I just said American cheese twice, like, 45 seconds ago!! (because it took him that long to put the turkey on the bread. Which was longer than 6 inches, and is that OK??) I only get two things on my sandwich, and so that took about 2 minutes. Of course, there was the 10 second pause when I asked for black pepper, and he reached for the black olives, hesitated, and looked panicky at me, (no, I did not help him, he needs to figure out on him own that black olives are not peppers), and finally started looking for the jar of pepper. Shake, pause, shake, pause. “Is that enough?” Yes, because when I asked for lots of black pepper, I meant 2 half hearted shakes. Keep shaking darling! And don’t get me started on the process of paying. He only knew how to make change because the computer told him what to give me.

Thirty-five minutes and lite mayo later, (since they were out of regular mayo), we got out of there. At least Workaholic and I had a nice 15 minute long discussion on the car ride home about how I am such a good sandwich artist and why we didn’t like the teenage boys.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Idiot of the Year

Today, I am a hero. Well, sort of. Workaholic and my FIL were putzing around with the lifts in the lake. They wanted to switch the side that the crank was on, so we don’t have to go in the water to fill up the gas tanks when the boats are on the lifts. My job? If my husband or his father started to electrocute themselves with the drill they were using while perched precariously above the water, then I pull the plug on the drill. There was actually a moment when FIL was standing about 2 inches over the water on a piece of wood, while drilling whatever it was that he felt it necessary to drill a hole in. I also pulled the plug when they were dangling the drill over the water while passing it back and forth, just in case they dropped it while my husband was holding the cord. Thankfully, my hero instincts never had to be put to the test. Can you imagine?? FIL slips into the water, and I start shrieking and screaming, all the while holding the cord in my hand, but not pulling it. Sorry for letting you electrocute yourself for 10 seconds while I had a freak-out.
I am thinking of submitting all of us for Idiots of the Year 2008.


Let’s discuss how dumb I am.
My brother-in-law set up wireless internet at the cottage in Michigan. I try to connect, the green bars are lit up, but I can’t access the internet. Why, oh why?? It says that it is “authenticating.” So I call Comcast, I text back and forth with my brother-in-law, one of which went like this…

“Where is the router located?”

Real answer? I had the wrong password.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Match Made in Heaven

I got to go see the lady doctor this morning. And can I just tell you, there is nothing better than having a man looking in between your legs while you discuss the virtues of Golden Retrievers vs. Bernese Mountain Dogs. I love my doctor!!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Soooo NOT the Dog Whisperer

Last night I decided to play Dog Whisperer. For those of you who don’t know who Cesar Millan is, he’s this Mexican guy who sneaked into the US like, 20 years ago, and started grooming dogs. (don’t worry, he’s all legal now) His favorites were the crazy insane ones that no one else could deal with. He has turned this who thing into a career, helping people like Will Smith deal with his Rottweilers. The guy has his own show on National Geographic channel, and it does appear like he works magic. Really, it’s all common sense.

So I was playing with The Fonz in the back yard, which consists of me hitting a racquetball as far as I can with an old wooden baseball bat, and then he runs and gets it and brings it back to within 10 feet of me. Repeat. Again and again. Our neighbors have a little white Maltese sh*t dog, that they bought from Alsip, one of the pet stores in town. So of course, it’s a puppy mill dog and has no brains and is insane. They let him out, and he proceeds to stand on the edge of his deck and bark at me. This is not unusual, and honestly, it gets old. For a moment, I threaten him, but decide that I am too lazy to walk over there only to have him run away from me, and he keeps barking. But then, I realize that if I don’t go after him, he has won. He thinks that barking at me keeps me away from him. I don’t know why he feels the need to do this, because he knows me, I met him when he was fresh out of the pet store! But who knows what goes on in the mind of an unstable dog. So I decide to get him.

I walk over, and he runs away a little, still barking. I follow. He runs, barks more. I finally get him cornered against his sliding glass door and the little psycho went nuts on me. Snapping and biting and generally trying to kill my hand. He even landed a couple of skin puncturing bites, which bled a total of about 1 ½ drops. But I finally got him up and on my lap, and the neighbors at this point decide to see why their precious little dog was screaming outside. They weren’t mad at me, just wondering what the heck was going on. (I could tell these people that dogs can fly, and they would probably believe me...they have that much faith in my ridiculous amount of dog knowledge, for having no career or use for it) Anyway, I told her, “I win.”

So hopefully he will no longer poop on my deck, or in my living room, and the ultimate goal is that he will not bark at me anymore. If he does, I suppose more blood will be oozed, but next time I won’t guarantee that it’s mine. (insert evil laugh here)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Today I am sad. Ever since roughly…Christmas, I have been looking forward to Memorial Day weekend. It’s the kick-off to summer! The beginning of warm weather!! And the weather is supposed to be great!!! But unfortunately, it looks like I will be hanging out with my in-laws at the lake without Workaholic. (no offense to the ILs, you know I love you) You see, he is buried right now. In a hole. And what is that saying? “If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop digging.” And he would be digging if he took off three whole days to go to the lake for the weekend. Even if is Memorial Day weekend. Sigh…boys.

On a lighter note, I have a mind numbingly boring task to complete. See you on the other side, minus a few brain cells.

Monday, May 19, 2008

America, we have a problem

Do you ever have those moments of epiphanies? Where you realize something that you have heard all along is so beyond true? I now realize just how much of a problem obesity in America is. I was at the beach yesterday. For most of the day. Just sitting on a chair, under an umbrella, because on the first day of my vacation I spent 3 hours in the blazing sunlight, lounging by the pool, in waay not enough sunscreen. Anyway, I was also reading a book and listening to my iPod, and just gazing at the wondrous mound of flesh lying in front of me. She was young, early twenties, and should not have been wearing a bikini. I mean this in the nicest way possible. OK, maybe not. I really don’t know where she got a bikini to fit her. Maybe she just really wanted to show off the ginormous tattoo of the black cat on her back, or maybe she really wanted to tan her multiple roll stomach, or maybe she just felt that everyone wanted to play the game of "When do you think her boobs will fall out of her top?" (I was placing bets in my head) Whatever the reason, I found myself getting kind of mad at her. I mean, I like wearing bikinis, but I know that I don’t look like what I did in high school or college, or even what I looked like 3 years ago. So I opted for a one piece, because I was going to be in public. A nice, stomach concealing, one piece. She did not feel that any of her should be concealed. Ugh. But the thing is, she wasn’t the only one. Most of the women there should not have been wearing string bikinis. I mean, come on ladies, at some point in your life, you need more than a thin piece of fabric to hold up those girls. And when the string on the bottoms is almost hidden in your love handles, maybe you should have opted for a bikini that had actual fabric on the sides. You can get just as nice a tan with a little cloth covering you. I actually understand why young men, or old men, walking down the beach ogle at those young things who deserve to wear the little string bikinis. Hell, I was ogling them!! Does this epiphany mean that I am going to completely change my life and start eating healthy and exercising so I can look awesome in a bikini?? Umm…no. It means that I will learn how to nap more at the beach.

Saturday, May 17, 2008


Question: What is the longest line at Chicago’s Midway airport at 7:30am?
Answer: McDonalds

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Today I am stealing something from an e-mail I am sure you all have seen…
If you can start the day without caffeine,

If you can always be cheerful, ignoring aches and pains,
If you can resist complaining and boring people with your troubles,
If you can eat the same food every day and be grateful for it,
If you can understand when your loved ones are too busy to give you any time,
If you can take criticism and blame without resentment,
If you can ignore a friend's limited education and never correct her/him,
If you can resist treating a rich friend better than a poor friend,
If you can conquer tension without medical help,

Ifyou can relax without liquor,
If you can sleep without the aid of drugs,

Then you are probably the family dog!!

This is definitely The Fonz. He has a cake life. I feel bad for him sometimes though, for example, I am going to Florida for the weekend. Workaholic can entertain himself, but poor Fonz is just stuck at home, same old shit, different day. Lots of sleeping on the couch in the basement. And shedding on the couch in the basement. He did finally get shaved for the summer…he looks so handsome. And when he comes out from the back of the groomers…he is literally prancing. Like a little girl showing off her new tutu. Yes, I just compared my male dog to a little girl.

But back to how pathetic his life is…this is my nightly routine.
Every night I come home from work and go to the bathroom and change my clothes. At some point, after a few minutes, Fonz will come a wandering in. His tail is wagging, and he has a smile on his face, but you can tell that he is slightly annoyed. You see, he has known that I have been home for at least a few minutes, and when he realizes that I am not coming to greet him, he decides to drag his blond butt off the couch to grace me with his almighty presence. (Which is always when I am sitting on the toilet.)

Besides, I probably woke him up and he has to pee. So I then let him out, and he pees and then comes running joyfully back inside, like something wonderful is about to happen. This is the something wonderful. I get my snack ready, (lately chocolate milk and peaches), and he lies by the fireplace watching me intently during the snack preparation. If I make a move towards the cookie jar on the counter, that yes, is filled with dog treats, he is on it, ready to spring to my side should I actually take the lid off. (what?? it has a nameplate with his name on it, so of course his treats are kept in there!! It was a Christmas gift from my brother-in-law a few years ago. Yes, my family knows that getting me a gift for the dog is just like getting a gift for me). I then pick up my snack, and as soon as I take a step away from the kitchen, he is on his feet, trotting to the basement stairs. He will stand there until I actually tell him to go down or head down myself, and he then positions himself in the exact same spot on the couch that he vacated so begrudgingly only minutes before. We then watch a little TV, and at some point he will crawl up next to me and allow me to pet him for a few minutes. Keep in mind if I stop giving satisfactory affection, he stands up, stretches, farts in my face, and goes to lay in a huff in front of the fireplace.

Last night was a good example of what happens when Workaholic gets home. We eat dinner, the whole time feeling Fonz’s eyes burning holes in our backs, as he watches for any movement of a free scrap. He is polite about it, laying across the room, but when I go to put my dish in the dishwasher, he stands, begging with his eyes to lick the plate. And how can you resist?? So I give him the plate, as does Workaholic. Keep in mind now that if I place the plate on the floor in front of me, he just stares at it. Or if we hold it in the air from our chairs (because we are just too lazy to get up) at the appropriate height for maximum licking efficiency while he is standing, he just looks at you like you have lost your mind. He is actually offended and backs away if I put the plate right in front of his face. The plate must be placed on the rug in front of the fireplace, but not too close to him, so as to not crowd him. (So if you ever come to eat at my house, I hope you don’t mind dishwasher washed plates that have been licked by a dog also.)

Once dinner is over and plates have been licked and placed in the dishwasher, Workaholic tries to play with The Fonz. And if he gets too rough, Fonz runs and hides behind me. And by too rough I mean staring at him too intently. Turns out the dog is kind of a wuss. When it is time for bed, the petting routine is repeated, complete with fart (or burp) and huff.

My dog, for having as unexciting a life as he does, is really kind of a snob.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Happy Mother's Day!!

Today is Mother’s Day. When I was a kid, I remember watching shows on TV, like, Growing Pains or something, and this huge deal was made out of Mother’s Day. Breakfast in bed, flowers, etc. In my house, we just didn’t make a big deal out of anything. I don’t even remember making a big deal out of it at school...making Mother’s Day gifts for mom. Looking back, I am sure that we did, they just weren’t that memorable. My dad always took off for Father’s Day, his annual fishing trip to Canada, so for years I never even got him a card, much less a gift. Really, getting out of the country, away from the house full of girls had to be enough of a gift.

In the past couple of years, I’ve learned to appreciate mom more and more. The poor woman is the defacto babysitter for all home football games, and a few basketball games. (not as easy as it sounds when you are talking about twins and an infant and a very active little boy) She prepares big meals for Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas with little to no help from her ever-so-grateful children. Whenever she knows that we are coming into town, she makes sure that there is food for breakfast and dinner and lunch and that there is Coke and Oreos and milk in the house. And Nestle Quik. I also like to imagine that she makes sure the sheets and towels are clean.

And as much as she wants to pry into our lives, she won’t do it. She won’t tell us what she thinks that we should do next, but she’ll dole out the advice if asked. If there is even a chance that one of her daughters might move home to Lafayette, she tries so hard not to get her hopes up, but she can’t help but think of all the things she would get to do, like go to Grandparents Day at her grandkids school. And if it doesn’t work out, she won’t show her disappointment. (too much anyway) She loves her grandkids, driving farther than I think she ever would’ve driven for us kids to see sporting events!! Maybe it’s just easier now.

In short, she doesn’t say it much, but she really loves her family. Which should be a given. But when you think of all the little things that she does, it just makes you a little more grateful than usual on this day of the year that she is my mom.

Monday, May 5, 2008

My Motto for Life

I am sure that many of you have seen this before, but I always laugh when I get it...

In one episode of 'Cheers', Cliff is seated at the bar describing the Buffalo Theory to his buddy, Norm. I don't think I've ever heard the concept explained any better than this . .
"Well you see, Norm, it's like this . . . A herd of buffalo can only move as fast as the slowest buffalo. And when the heard is hunted, it is the slowest and weakest ones at the back that are killed first. This natural selection is good for the herd as a whole, because the general speed and health of the whole group keeps improving by the regular killing of the weakest members. In much the same way, the human brain can only operate as fast as the slowest brain cells. Now, as we know, excessive intake of alcohol kills brain cells. But naturally, it attacks the slowest and weakest brain cells first. In this way, regular consumption of beer eliminates the weaker brain cells, making the brain a faster and more efficient machine. And that, Norm, is why you always feel smarter after a few beers."

Saturday, May 3, 2008

It's Amazing!!

If my mother-in-law is reading this, tell my father-in-law that the unthinkable has happened. Workaholic has cleaned up the warehouse. You see, my in-laws have their own construction business. For years and years and years, they had a small U-Lock. They were one of the first to rent it when it was built, it was outside the gate so they had access at all hours of the night, and it was perfectly suited to them. Enter into the picture Workaholic. I think that they knew his habits, because shortly after he joined the business, they rented a warehouse roughly 6 times the size of the good old U-Lock. Within a year, it was full. Of stuff. He has built shelves, rearranged the shelves, and built more shelves. He has swept the floor only to dump a vanload of tools onto it, loaded the shelves only to empty them, and spent many a weekend in there. I think there is enough material in the warehouse for us to build our next house. He has actually been there so late one time that a cop stopped by just to make sure that he was supposed to be there and not robbing the place. (turns out it was the same cop who pulled over his uncle for DUI...also turns out the cop had to pull him over, because his uncle almost ran the cop off the road!!) Anyway, I digress. While I was picking up The Fonz's pain meds, shopping at Tarzhay, and robbing the grocery store of all SnackPaks and good SmartOnes, Workaholic was cleaning the warehouse. Granted, this is the third day in a row that he has spent there, but this day was special. Because he finished. It is organized. You can park a car in it, and walk from the front to the back with leaping over tall mounds of...stuff. I have no idea what is all in there, tools, wood, and nails. But it is all pretty, everything on their own shelves. The best part of all of this, he also cleaned out our garage. Which means that a car can now be parked in each bay, I can reach the aforementioned bicycle without tripping over a box of...something, and I forgot that we also own a game of bags...Purdue themed, of course. Only about 30 more things on the list before we can list the house on the market!!!

I also have to complain about just one thing. I picked up The Fonz's meds today. Let me mention that I am a bit of freak about The Fonz and his health, so this is about the millionth time I've visited the vet this year. First there was getting his bloodwork done for his surgery, then there was the actual surgery, then there was taking out of the stitches, then I had to go back because one of his incisions popped open, then I had to go back again to get those stiches out, then we had to go back again because he broke his nail and we had to rip it out. All since January. So as I am writing out the insanely high check for his meds, the tech mentions that he is overdue for his rabies vaccine. Now this is just not possible. I don't let my dog's vaccines expire. He gets them in September, because when he turned a year, I went and got his yearly vaccines, and found out later that I was four months early. But it is easy to remember, go every year aroud our birthdays. (the past few years, we go on my birthday) So this is just wrong. And, at the time, I didn't know that they were actually wrong, they were just looking at a bad copy of his records from the previous vet. I thought that they were right, and we had to split up his vaccines that year, and I was pissed. When I went last September, did they mention that he would be due, and think that we should just do them all then? No. When he went in any of the six times since January, including the time that he went in for surgery, did they mention it? No. Now, I am thinking that we can't get in until the second week in June, he may not be able to get groomed in May, and I'll have to pay for an office visit that I've already paid for several times!! WTF???? But, I get home, look at my copy of the records, and the number that the tech thought was a one was actually a nine. As in, the month of September, not January. So it was an honest mistake, just one that was caught 4 months too late. So now I need to go in and make sure that they've got the right date in, so when the groomers call for his vaccine info, they aren't given it wrong, and they try to cancel on me, and uhhh. The good part is, at least he isn't rabid.