Summer Breeze

When we traded the truck in on the Protégé, the Spouse Thingy said that within a couple of weeks, there would be something oversized we’d want to buy, and would have no way of hauling it home.


We wanted a pair of plastic lawn chairs; not the webbed fold-out kind—we have those and they’re not very comfortable—but plastic Adirondack chairs. Cheap, but comfy. Nice for sitting outside when it’s warm, gabbing with the neighbors, watching the neighbor kids play in the court.

So we went to Target today, knowing they had exactly what we want. And we knew they wouldn’t fit in the trunk of either car—but hey, I have a convertible. I learned at Christmas time that you can get something too big for the trunk and still haul it home. Just put the top down, set it in the back seat, and then put the top up. Tres convenient.

Only problem is, the chairs were too tall to put the top back up.
It was 48 degrees out.
I was anticipating a very chilly ride home, about which I would be whining the rest of the day (or at least until 2:30, when the Spouse Thingy headed off to work.)

It wasn’t bad at all! We kept the windows rolled up and the heat running, and actually felt a little uncomfortable after a while. It was too warm. Go figure. At least I got to ride with the top down.

And now we can sit outside and watch the kidlets, and drive the cat nuts as he sits in the window and contemplates our reasons for being out there with the little germ bags.

Happy Birthday to Kathy! And Happy Birthday tomorrow to Kaitlyn, who finally gets one on her birthday!


You’re Welcome, Dayton

I should have known it would happen. I finally get the jacket I’ve wanted for a long time, and now Spring is sprouting. Or blooming. Or sparkling. Whatever.

Now, granted, I’ve been whining about the cold and begging Spring to get here—I should have realized that when I left the flea market with that jacket, that the weather would suddenly warm up, and I wouldn’t be able to wear it without sweating like…um, not like a pig…just sweating a whole lot.

It’s good for about 37 and below (yep, we’ve gotten used to the cold, so 40 feels pretty spiffy right now) and for the rest of this week we’ll be 42 and above—we might even hit the 50s this weekend.

Too warm for the jacket, too cold to put the top down on the car.


Oh, How I Wanna Go Home…

Holy fricking guacamole…I’m not sure the bureaucracy of Ohio could be any more screwed up. Who makes the laws here anyway? Especially the laws pertaining to the Motor Vehicle Department?

Here’s the thing…we traded our truck in when we bought the car, and the dealer took our vanity plates and put them on the car—we were told that when we got the Nonengotiable Title in the mail to just take it to the BMV, pay $4.50, and they would transfer those plates to the new car.

To be sure, the Spouse Thingy called the BMV before we left the house this morning to be sure. Yep, bring the title and $4.50.


So we get the title and head to the BMV. The lady there starts to make the transfer and then says she can’t, because the plates was registered to a truck and can’t be transferred to a car. We have to call the main BMV in Columbus. They won’t do it—we have to. So home we go, where the Spouse Thingy gets on the phone and tries to cut through all the busy signals. He finally gets a person—well, it can be done, but first he needs me to write some kind of letter stating I give up my half of the personalized plates (evidently I was part owner…whoda thunk?) and he needs a Power of Attorney; send that with $4.50, a pint of blood, and our firstborn child, and they’ll get back to us.

Holy crap. All we wanted was to keep our vanity plates.

After 4 freaking hours of dealing with it, we said the hell with it and went back to get generic plates. Screw the vanity plates, as nifty as they were.

So…we’re back at the BMV, getting the plates. Ohio has this screwed up thing where every damned thing you’re registered for is tied to your birth date. It’s February. The Spouse Thingy’s birthday is in April. So, we paid registration for a full year, and had to go ahead and pay anotheryear’s registration since the first “year” expires in April.


Today, we just wanted to go back to CA, where the DMV might take forever to get through, but at least it makes some kind of sense.


I Am An Addict

Yes, I am.

To these.

Day before yesterday I had half a box of them for lunch. I finished the box whilst watching Survivor last night. Tonight, instead of dinner, I had…well, more.

I need help.
Or another box.


You Are My Sunshine…

It’s a tease, I know it. The temps soared today—I think we hit 58, and it felt damned good. I washed my car and got off all the road salt that’s accumulated over the last couple of months, cleaned a bunch of trash out of the garage (not that you can really tell), opened the front door and let some fresh air in (yes, Max, you’re welcome) and did a little cleaning. The neighborhood kids got to play outside this afternoon, and it was nice to hear the laughter drift through the front door.

It can’t last. I know that. It’s the middle of February, for Pete’s sake—two days from now it could all turn and we could get socked with 12 inches of snow.

That would make me a very unhappy Wabbit…I am so freaking ready for Spring. I want it to hit 75 so I can put the top down on the car and cruise—hell, I almost put it down today, but common sense finally won out. Near-60 is almostwarm enough to go topless, but only if you’ve just survived a North Dakota winter.

I supposed I should be grateful if we do get another cold snap.
I have a spiffy new jacket to wear.
All right, a little more cold would be okay, but just a little.


Ya, Salute

Ain’t it pretty?

My Valentine’s Day present :) The Spouse Thingy got The Shield, Season Two DVD set from me…I got the sweet USA jacket I’ve coveted for 3-4 years.

At the flea market, even!

Don’t laugh… the flea market is one of my favorite places out here, and we inevitably spend more than we intend when we go there. It’s a huge indoor flea market with just about everything imaginable available. While we wandered the length of one of the buildings, we passed a place that sells pet supplies—there was a little boy looking longingly at hamster cages, and as we walked by I heard his father say, “…but you don’t even have a hamster…”

The little boy seemed nonplussed. “Yeah, but we set out that mousetrap, and after it goes off…”

LOL Poor kid is in for a rude awakening.

BTW…leather is awfully squeaky. I never knew that.


Cough It Up, Peeps

Wil Wheaton wants your money, folks. And I want you to give it to him.

This June, he and his lovely wife Anne will take part in the Leukemia & Lymphoma Team In Training Marathon. Their goal is to raise $25,000, and with our help, they can surely raise that, and more.

It would be nice if every person who visited Wil’s site donated just a dollar—that could raise almost half a million dollars in just a month. But realistically, that won’t happen…hopefully though, if we all pass the word along and kick in a few bucks ourselves, we can help them blow away that $25,000 goal.

Leukemia and Lymphoma are both more common than you might think.
So, please?


Another Book In The Works…

…and I need help. If you have or know anyone who has Fibromyalgia, and would be willing to participate in a questionnaire for research purposes, please check out “We’re Writing A Book”.

In a nutshell, this will be a book from the perspective of people who have FMS, telling the world what we feel and want them to know about the disease, instead of a medical-type tome written by a doctor who may or may not even believe in the disease as a reputable diagnosis.

Mucho thanks!


Zoom Zoom Zoom

The nice thing about a car manufacturer discontinuing a model is that dealership stuck with old stock are willing to cut deals to move them out. Even makes trading in something with negative equity not such a painful thing. Oohyeah.

In any case, we traded in the truck on a 2003 Protégé LX. All power, 6-CD changer, power moonroof, and it’s zippy. It also means I won’t be so freaked out when it snows, and I won’t white-knuckle it 90% of the time, and I won’t be worried sick every time the Spouse Thingy has to go to work when the Interstate is slick. Pickups & snow-slick roads don’t go well together…now I can relax. Just a little.


Look Ma, No Cavities!

The highlight of my day: getting my teeth cleaned. Now they’re all bright and shiny and smooooth. But the unfairness of it all—the kid in the next cubicle got a prize for being good. I didn’t get a prize. I was good. I didn’t bite either the hygienist or the dentist. He gets a Yo-Yo, I got jack squat.

Next time, I’ll bite someone. Maybe that’ll get me something.


Lobotomizing Winnie The Pooh

Something I haven’t done in a long time—a kiddy birthday party. The Spouse Thingy and I were invited to the little boy next door’s 2nd birthday party this afternoon, and of course we went. This kid is beyond cute, he’s so adorable it’s damn near nauseating. Since winter settled in, keeping all the neighborhood kids inside most of the time, we haven’t seen much of him or any of the other kids—we have an incredibly dense population of Kidlet Cuteness on this street—so there was no way we were going to miss it.

Now granted, you get a bunch of kids all under seven years old in one place, it’s going to be loud, but it’s a fun kind of loud. And I’d forgotten all the party games that kids like to play, like Pin The Tail On The Donkey (done with stickers, so of course I planted one on the Spouse Thingy’s forehead) and racing with hard boiled eggs balanced on spoons. One of the funniest was a game I’d never seen before—powdered donuts were strung from a line across the room, placed at the kids’ face heights, and they had to try to eat them hands-free. The older kids were blindfolded…that was truly one of the more hysterical games I’ve seen, donuts bouncing off frustrated little faces, tongues flipping all over the place as they tried to catch them in their mouths. The oldest won (she was very patient and figured out right off the bat how to get the donut to stay still, and once she got it she didn’t let go), and her little brother never gave up—he had that donut bouncing off his face for 5 minutes, and when he finally got it, he sucked it in, took a step forward, and ripped it from the line. The smaller kids…well, they eventually cheated and grabbed the donuts with their hands, but it was still funny.

And this was the first time I’ve ever seen the birthday honoree much more interested in the cake than in his presents. Mom made the most awesome Winnie The Pooh cake—not a flat sheet cake with Winnie’s face painted on it, but a 3 dimensional, head to foot cake of Pooh Bear. It was frosted to damn near perfect detail with these tiny, very delicate flowerlet-type frosting buds…and then Dad took a knife and started cutting into Pooh’s head.

He sliced right down the side of Pooh’s head, exposing his chocolate innards.

Pooh’s innards were quite tasty, too.

What was supposed to be a 2 hour birthday party ended after 5 hours—and it was fun. Loud & excited kids generally get on my nerves these days, but I didn’t leave feeling like I wanted to string the little monsters up by their toes. I left feeling like I’d had a good time, and happy that once again, we selected a fairly noisy toy as a gift. :)

I don’t mind inflicting loud on other kids’ parents.
And mine is too old for them to retaliate with even louder toys as gifts.
Life is good.


Aren't We Pretty?

Parental units will get copies next week, I promise!


(mom mode)

All right, so I’m sitting at the BX food court, reading the first few pages of the book I’d just bought, taking occasional sips of a Diet Coke with way too much ice in it, when a couple of older teenagers—they might have been 20—plopped down at the booth in front of me.

Loud, talking with food in their mouths, they were kind of hard to ignore. And the first thing I heard through the grinding of greasy pizza was “Can your fucking believe it? My fucking old man is riding my ass about getting a fucking job. Like I’m fucking going to bag fries at McDonald’s for fucking minimum wage.”

Well now. That’s a whole lot of fucking.

“No shit,” was his companions thoughtful reply. “Dude, you can make better nickel than slinging grease.”

Grunt. “Yeah, I’m not some loser who has to take some fucking low life job wearing a goddamned paper hat.”

How sweet and wholesome their repartee was. As they slurped and scarfed and spoke through gobs of cheese and tomato sauce, they both agreed that anyone working in fast food was obviously too defective to get a “better” job; that if they both just waited the six figure income would leap into their laps; and obviously, parental units requiring their offspring to get up and get a job are insipid, soulless, vile morons not worth much use of their memory cells on any given day.

It was enlightening, for sure.

Here’s the thing, boys and girls: there’s not a thing wrong with being the guy behind the counter asked “You want fries with that?” There’s no shame in bagging fries—or groceries for that matter—and there’s nothing lame about being willing to spend your evening delivering pizza or changing some 90 year old guy’s Depends in the nursing home down the street.

So they pay minimum wage. And they’re not glamorous jobs.

But I tell you what: it’s easier to get the better job, the one you want, when you’re actually working, even if it is mucking through the fry grease at McD’s or Wendy’s. And while you’re trying to get that better job, you’re earning a paycheck—and minimum wage is better than no wage at all.

Oh yeah…while I’m pontificating… Sit up straight, dress nicely for the job interview even if it is “just” fast food, don’t pick your nose, fart, or belch during the job interview, and for God’s sake, don’t say the word “fucking” even once.

(/mom mode)