Thursday, June 27, 2013

Oddly Comforting Sales Call

Phone Salesperson:  "Hello!  Have you considered the value of adding siding to your house?"

Me:  "I'm sorry, my house is brick, and bricks are prettier than siding."

P.S. :  "Is it brick all the way through or a brick fa├žade?"

Me:  "What does that have to do with its prettiness?"

P.S.:  "Well, siding..."

Me:  "I have to go teach a class, but let me ask you this:  do you sell siding that looks like a giant rainbow flag?  Because I might be interested in that for my shed."

P.S.:  "You know, several people have asked me that today."

Me:  "Good."

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Real Conversations with Mom: Big Bang Theory

Mom:  So is he famous or something?

Me:  He's Wil Wheaton.

Mom:  And he beat this other guy up when he was little?

Me:  No, he didn't show up for a Star Trek convention.  Do you know who Wil Wheaton is?

Mom:  No.  A Star Wars guy?

Me:  He played Wesley Crusher in Star Trek: The Next Generation.

Mom:  Okay, now I understand.


Me:  You don't know who Wesley Crusher is, do you?

Mom:  Well, no, but I wanted you to stop telling me.


Mom: Alright, you can go ahead and tell me.

Me:  Okay, so Captain Picard...

Mom:  Just wait a minute while I turn off my hearing aid.

Me:  You are so mean.

Mom:  I didn't know that.  Tell me more.


Sunday, June 16, 2013

Nothing is Where It's Supposed to Be (and the Cats Are Very Angry)

Okay, so, well, there's nothing to report here.  Seriously, nothing.  Well, no, a friend of mine was startled by bunnies and injured her leg badly enough to need ice and sympathy and a link to my parody poem from February which made me feel all warm and tingly because someone else understands that bunnies are dangerous, dammit.

And then I felt guilty for feeling all warm and tingly due to someone else's pain.  And then I felt better because I felt guilty, which is not, I think, the purpose of guilt. 

But all of this is a mere distraction from the fact that nothing happened here which is darned upsetting because what was supposed to happen was the kitchen floor getting torn up and a new floor put down and a new dishwasher installed and a new garbage disposal likewise installed and then many adult beverages consumed in celebration.  But not only was the floor not torn up and replaced or the appliances installed, but--and this is the really frustrating part--the wine cabinet is inaccessible due to the white cabinet and the refrigerator now living in the dining room.

Do you understand, my beloved readers?  The refrigerator is in the dining room, and the microwave is in the living room, and the dining room table is filled with stuff from the kitchen cabinet and the coffee maker is in the damn bathroom, and I cannot open the wine cabinet.

And before you ask, yes, I could go buy more wine, but where am I going to put it?  I can't use the coffee table because that's where we have the silverware and the gin and the tea bags.  The fireplace is out because we had to move the cat dishes there to the great displeasure of the cats who keep wandering into the empty kitchen, looking around, and then vomiting right where their food bowls are supposed to be.

My bedroom would be a good place for the wine except that I have thirty pieces of pottery and twice that many books piled on every available surface waiting to go back into the kitchen or dining room or my home office.   Mom's bedroom is full of cat toys and paper towels.   There are dvds and cookbooks piled in my home office where they don't belong, along with the spice rack and a stack of skillets and all of the oven mitts.

There are too many oven mitts, by the way.  If you need some, let me know, and I will send them to you as soon as all of this is over and the food processor is not blocking access to the desk where we keep the mailing supplies.

The hallway is a dangerous maze of laundry, shoes and teapots.

I mean, great silver cylons, just talking about this makes me want to get into that wine cabinet!  Which I cannot do. 

So I'm sipping a nice glass of unsweetened iced tea and pretending it's malbec.  I'm doing deep breathing and visualizations of ponds and beaches and libraries.  But let me be very clear about this:  if nothing continues to happen this week, there will be boxed wine on the front porch where I will sit in my pyjamas listening to old Hank Williams songs and dreaming of the days when I could eat at a table in my own house.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Joy and Woe (and Joy. And Woe.)

I have a confession to make, precious readers:  I hear voices.*  Two voices, specifically.  One of them is optimistic, always looking on the bright side of things, chirping around like a damn robin.  The other is...not.

In times of stress, these voices become more passionate, more argumentative, and more likely to disturb me when I'm watching season 2 of the Sarah Jane Adventures.**  To purge myself of their sniping, I am posting one of their dialogues to this blog.  Feel free to heckle if the spirit moves you.

Voice A:  "Woe unto me, for the dishwasher has sprung three leaks and ruined the kitchen floor!"

Voice B:  "Rejoice and be glad!  For I have homeowner's insurance!"

Voice A:  "Woe unto me!  The policy does not cover this, for, lo! a slow leak is a 'maintenance problem.'"

Voice B:  "Rejoice and be glad, for the dishwasher is a mere three years old!"

Voice A: "Woe, serious woe!  The warranty expired six months ago."

Voice B:  "Rejoice and be glad, for we have an emergency fund!"

Voice A:  "Woe unto me, for we will have it no longer!"

Voice B: "Rejoice and be glad, dammit, for we know a good plumber who charges a reasonable price!"

Voice A:  "Woe unto me and unto that plumber, for he has died!"***

Voice B:  "Rejoice and be glad, for my neighbors, the awesome ones, they have found a good contractor!"

Voice A:  "Woe unto me, for good contractors are expensive!"

Voice B:  "Rejoice and be glad, for I can (barely) afford him!  And, lo!  I didn't like that flooring in any case!"

Voice A:  "Woe unto me, for I did like that dishwasher, dammit."

Voice B:  "Rejoice and be glad, fool!  There is a company that makes dishwashers that shut off when they leak!"

Voice A:  "Oh, woe and more woe, for that dishwasher costs twice what I wish to pay!"

Voice B:  "Rejoice and be glad, for it still costs less than a new floor!"

Voice A:  "Woe unto savvy consumers, for this company receives mixed reviews on the internet!"

Voice B:  "Okay, you have to rejoice and be glad about this one:  that dishwasher has a utensil drawer which is Excessively Cool!"

Voice A: "Woe unto me, idiot, for that utensil drawer adds $100 to the price of that dishwasher!"

Voice B: "Rejoice and give thanks, for Mom, she desires that utensil drawer!"

Voice A:  "Woe unto Mom, then, for she is not paying for that dishwasher!"

Voice B:  "Er, you had better rejoice in that utensil drawer, or Mom will Kick Ass."

Voice A:  "Woe unto me yet again, for I fear the ass-kicking from Mom, as a squirrel took me down not a day ago."

Voice B:  "Rejoice and...wait, what?"

Voice A:  "Woe, for he appeared out of nowhere, and I missed a step, and my ankle, oh painful woe! It was twisted!"

Voice B:  "A squirrel?  Seriously, you were injured by a squirrel?"

Voice A:  "Lo!  Where are your rejoicings and your commands to be glad now?!  That squirrel has undone us both!"

Voice B:  "Seriously?!  You know, sometimes I have no idea what I'm doing in this brain with you, you know that?  I mean a damn squirrel!  I can't deal with this.  I'm going to go watch Big Bang Theory."

Voice A:  "Dude.  It was a pretty vicious squirrel."

Voice B:  "Shut up."

*No, I am not schizophrenic; I am an English professor, and I am laying a serious metaphor on you dudes.  Watch now, there may be a quiz.
**The spinoff of Doctor Who that is not Torchwood.  The one, that is, that you can't even pretend is for adults.
***He did die, and all three of us liked him, alas.