I feel the need

I feel the need

Sunday, January 27, 2013

My daughter is dating...and my house has never been cleaner!

Good evening!

So Peaches has her first boyfriend.  He's a very, very nice young man and we will call him Topeka because he's named after a city, but I am not going to tell you which one for real.

When Skippy started dating and hanging out with his girlfriend May, I wasn't all that worried about a lot of things.  I had no issues strolling into his room when they were watching a movie or something and announcing that there would be NONE OF THAT! I get along with May very well and have no issue saying and being exactly what I mean to say and be.

They are really this sort of couple...
But Topeka is a different person.  First off, he's a boy.  And Peaches has, in her teen years, become that mysterious thing all teen girls become when they stop talking to their parents and when everything is "FINE!"  (Throw in an eye roll and you can see her expression.  Throw in Barry Manilow music turned up WAY SUPER LOUD and you have me at fifteen.)  I mean, there are times she says she's staying at her friend's house and I ask her if she's actually going to her friend's house because her wishes her life, she has told us many times, was a John Hughes movie. 
But since I'm a mom, I'm convinced this is
what I'm coming home to...
So while Topeka is very polite and very nice, it is a struggle for me to not run into Peaches' room and yell, "HAND CHECK!"

Other than introducing Peaches to the wide world of Quentin Tarrantino movies  (something I wasn't quite ready for but something that was going to happen sooner rather than later anyway)  Topeka has been quite the nice boyfriend.  He's a little older, but he's very thoughtful, and he even sat through one of Peaches' really awful horror movies  (She is a delicate flower who enjoys films where monsters attack people at random.)  Still, I worry when they are standing in front of the house, or sitting in his car in front of the house, or whatever, because I know, I just know they are going to do something that is going to just be uncomfortable for me to know about.

So, to put my mind at ease and to combat what I know is teen hormones run amok in my own home...I make very sure I'm home when they are in the house and I'm doing something that is either noisy or embarrassing or both.  No way is there going to be any nookie in this building!

It started easily enough.  They were home, listening to some music.  Her door was open.  And I had, had, had to do the dishes.  WE don't have a dishwasher, so doing the dishes is a long, drawn out process that involves a lot of banging around, a lot of talking to the cats loudly, and a lot of singing because who doesn't sing when they're doing the dishes?

Vacuuming came next.  We have four cats.  We have to vacuum a lot.  Not my fault her bedroom is the only one with carpet and therefore gets done when we vacuum the rest of the house.

I find changing out the candles in all the candle holders to be an excellent thing to do.  It involves me walking past her door about a dozen times to get to my office where I keep all my Partylite candles and gifts. (Click here to shop on my site!)

Then I dusted.  I dusted the crap out of my house.  And what goes better with dusting than singing?  Oh, NOTHING!

But once the house is clean and the candles are changed out...NOW WHAT?

And that's when it hit me:  What's the worst, most libido crushing image anyone can have?

Fat woman sweating!

And so my friends, I now hit the Wii Fit every time Topeka is over.  See, our Wii shares a wall with Peaches' room.  Which means, while they are sitting there watching a movie, I'm adding to ten with my hips or hitting the ski jump and I'm doing it...you guessed it...noisily!

I find yoga to be the best hormone inhibitor...what's more disturbing than thinking about a large woman doing yoga poses?  While groaning.....and laughing?  And cheering herself on?  NOTHING!

So it's a win/win.  Peaches and Topeka are behaving themselves, and I'm getting my house cleaned and my fat jiggled.

Wonder what I'll do when the weather warms up and they can be outside for more than ten minutes without freezing to death?

Like Scarlett O'Hara, I will worry about THAT another day!  who knows...maybe winter will last forever this time!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The honeymoon Ended So Quickly After the Lovers Reunited.

Good evening!

So this week has been about Noelle C reuniting with her one true love...Lumbergh.  Lumbergh was out all last week at corporate meetings in a warmer climate.  Poor Noelle C was stuck here with those of us who spend our time NOT worshiping at the altar of Lumbergh.  And Lumbergh, since he's gained quite a bit of confidence that the team here at Stuff, Installed  (It's the name I'm using for the company in the upcoming Elsie W book, so you're going to have to get used to it.) isn't going to set fire to the place or walk out, didn't spend the week checking in by phone or email or text or smoke signal or whatever.

Poor Noelle C. He did send one email...and he sent it to everyone, not just her, and it read, "Hope everything is running smoothly there.  Thanks for all you do."

My response, "All is fine, we haven't set fire to the building."

Noelle C fretted for two solid days as to what to send in response to this heartfelt email  (that someone else probably wrote since Lumbergh rarely says thanks for anything.  Ever.)  I don't know what she finally did send, but I can tell you this:  She asked me for ideas on what to say.  In response to an email.  From her boss.  That he sent to everyone.

I told her to say something clever like, "I hope the weather is good."

Anyway, so Monday she was reunited with him.  And oh, how the lovers missed each other!

Well, actually, she missed him.  He...well he didn't miss her.  And here's why:

Remember when Elsie W worked here and she started every day out coming in late and then arguing with him for half an hour  and then cooking herself something and then eating it so that by the time she dialed the phone for the first time she'd been on the clock for an hour?

Well, Noelle C has rather a similar pattern.  She strolls in ten minutes early, but she's cheering, literally shouting cheerfully, and JINGLING HER KEYS.  Every day. Now this would not be a problem if I weren't on the PHONE WITH CUSTOMERS.  By the time she arrives to work my day is almost...almost half done.  And she can't hear how loud she is because she won't do anything about her hearing so she comes in like a varsity cheerleader with her keys jingling and shouting, "HI SARAH HOW ARE YOU?  HOW'S YOUR DAY GOING?"

Only in a more sing-song sort of sickly sweet voice.

Then, in a voice only dogs, Lumbergh, and I can hear, she reaches a new octave and greets Lumbergh.   And when her voice gets higher, she sounds like a little girl.  A little pants wetting girl jingling her keys and simpering in front of her boss.

And then she spends no less than fifteen immediate minutes in his office going over the tiniest details of her job and how she performed it the previous day.  (She makes phone calls.  That's all she does.  There's no skill to it.  I do it all the time.  The only requirement is that you don't curse at the customers and you don't blow your brains out due to boredom.)  After that, when she's gotten either the praise she was digging for or the scolding she aches to get, she spends no less than half an hour sitting at her desk chanting something to herself just loud enough to annoy me but not loud enough to actually reach Lumbergh's ears so he can't hear the gigantic can of crazy he opened with the simplest word.  And then, well , then she'll announce loudly because again SHE CAN'T HEAR THE VOLUME OF HER OWN VOICE that she has to "potty."  (Seriously...she's 56.  "Potty" is a word that should be banned from her vocabulary unless she's talking to a child under the age of 3.)  And she'll tell us multiple times, because she has to tell every person in the office exactly where she's going and what she's doing.

So she potties....and that takes about fifteen minutes, which means, by the time she's done her first phone call, she's been on the clock for almost an hour.

Now, multiply that by four, the number of days a week I have to witness this and then multiply it by 54, the degrees the intensity grew for Monday's cathartic reunion. 

That took almost 90 minutes.  And then there was another chat in his office every hour on the hour for ten minutes.  By the time I got back from lunch Lumbergh was tearing his hair out...well, he would have been if he had any hair to tear out. 

All he wanted to do was talk about the great seminars he'd been to.  I know how that is.  You get back from a conference all energized and rarin' to go and then you realize you work with a whackadoo.  Anyway, she was in his office at one point and he said something about a personality seminar and she said, and I am not making this up:

"So did you find out what kind of man you are? I know what kind of man you are.  You are a strong man.  You are an organized man.  You are a man who tries very hard."

I missed the rest.  i was busy gagging into my garbage can.

But by the end of Tuesday, after two days of worship just one step short of ceremonial feet washing, Lumbergh was at his wits' end with her and ceased communications with both of us.

I don't care.  I thrive on working alone.  Noelle C on the other hand thought we were in some sort of competition.  A competition for Lumbergh's love.  And the only rules were MAKE A LOT OF PHONE CALLS.

Hey, no problem.  I do my job.  I was perfectly happy to not be drawn into her web of whackadoodle.  And Lumbergh liked the peace and quiet. 

Noelle C, however, was not so happy and the minute he left for the night tonight, she let me have it.  For half an hour.

"He used to give me things to do. Now he gives you everything to do and all I'm supposed to do is make phone calls.  I asked him about it and he got angry at me."

Folks, let's try and see this from Lumbergh's perspective. He's a married guy.  He's a polar opposite from Noelle C in every possible way.  And the one thing he wants in the office is for people to do their jobs without having to be coaxed, monitored, instructed, and guided every step of the way.

I'm betting he got angry because, well, this isn't the first time Noelle C has berated him for giving me more attention.  I've tried explaining to her that her job is to make phone calls because she's good at that. My job is to do everything else because she's a whackadoo who tends to screw things up because she either doesn't hear everything or the multiple voices that must be harmonizing in her brain don't shut up long enough for her to focus on anything other than dialing the phone.

In short, what I'm sure Lumbergh heard, was this:


Now, according to Noelle C, she's going to ignore him until he loves her...I mean until he gives her more responsibilities in the office. 

It's going to be a long week.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Five for Friday: Things I really wish I'd never said to Noelle C

Good morning!  I realize it is Saturday, but this is probably my best Five for Friday ever, and I didn't feel like waiting until next Friday just because I was busy last night and didn't get around to posting this! 

I think it's all self explanatory, but let's just say this: I made these five statements over the course of a three month period.  And the responses, in some cases were immediate, while others got to simmer in that Pan's Labyrinth of a maze in her brain.


5) The holidays are so busy, especially with the church choirs I'm in.
Everyone has their thing over the holidays that keeps them busy. For me, I'd gotten myself into two choirs at my church and realized that Christmas is the big music season. Lots of singing, lots of rehearsal. (I managed to come down with a raging case of laryingitis this year, so it was a moot point, but not at the time this conversation happened.) Noelle C and I were talking about being busy during the holiday season and I made mention of being in a church choir. This was not a first mention of the topic. We've talked about church often in the past. I was under the impression, mostly because she told me, that she belonged to a church she liked very much. Apparently not on the day said these innocent words because as she stood there, staring down at me over the ledge of my desk, she raised up all the fury possible in her frame and spewed for a ten minute litany about how she had a very bad experience in a church once and she would never, ever, ever (Do you hear Taylor Swift in your head?) go into a church ever again. She picked up a fairly heavy item from my desk (it's an item I'm required to have on my desk...I don't want it, it's not mine, but it's part of our display in the show room and I have to have it on my desk) and started waving it around. I feared for the health of my head since it was in direct flight line of this item, should her grip give way.
4) I'm selling candy bars for a fund raiser for my kid.
This was some months ago, Girl child was selling candy bars to raise money for her band trip. I took a couple boxes to work with me, and the sales were a complete success. My best customer? Yep, that would be Noelle C. No one loves chocolate quite like
a fluffy girl. She enjoyed several helpings of chocolaty goodness.
And then she decided she needed to lose 80 pounds immediately. And suddenly, suddenly those candy bars, and the fact that I was selling them, were the enemy.  "You are making me fat!"  she shouted through mouthfuls of chocolate, but not in a funny way like most fluffy girls do, not in a way that really said, "I'm making myself fat."  No, Noelle C was definitely accusing me of bringing the candy bars to work, pulling the money out of her pocket, and forcing the chocolate into her pie hole.
A sort of sub section of this is that I keep a dish of candy on my desk.  It's candy for customers who come in, or for the installation guys who stop by my desk or the UPS guy, pretty much anyone who would like a piece of candy in their day gets one if they want to stop by my desk.  Typically it's hard candy, but for the holidays I brought in a bag of festive mini candy bars.  I hadn't even opened the bag when she spied it and ran out of her office SHRIEKING like some staged Hollywood banshee  "You can't bring that in here, I'm trying to give up SUGAR!"
She berated me for five minutes for that one.  How DARE  I bring in candy when she's giving up sugar and did I know how damaging sugar was to the body, and she was in the medical field once and she watched Dr. Oz and now she's giving up sugar and how DARE I tempt her.
Lumbergh, our boss  (not his real name) heard this exchange and, in his weird sense of humor, decided from then on it was funny to tease me about it.  "Hey, you brought candy in...I'm on a diet!"  he will chirp as he flits by my desk.  (Apparently I've decided he's a bird.)  Oh yes, it's hilarious...
3) You have a personality.
Recently I've tried adopting a method of conversing with Noelle C that WON'T get me into trouble.  Since she can't hear half my responses anyway  unless I shout and then she gets mad at me because I'm shouting and she thinks I'm shouting because I'm angry at her...it's sick circle of life at my desk, I assure you...I decided to try just nodding and agreeing with everything she says by repeating exactly what she says.  And I was doing so well the other day.  Lumbergh had left for the day, which was her instant signal to stop working.  (what is it with the women I am forced to work with in this building?  Every time Lumbergh leaves, they stop working and come to my desk to complain about him...don't they know the minute he leaves I have a very important spider solitaire game to play?????? And it's really twisted that she does  it, because she is SO in love with Lumbergh.  So when she rips on him it confuses me...I made the mistake once of agreeing with her about his foibles....I won't be doingTHAT again because the flip side of those conversations always result in her running to Lumbergh to tell him that we talked about him...but she always leaves her participation out of the conversation.
Anyway, so he left for the day and she stomps to my desk and starts talking about how she likes how I laugh.  I have a big, loud laugh if you get me going.  I thanked her, but did not make eye contact because it's been my experience that when she starts with a new topic that seems random, it's probably leading somewhere I don't want to go.  So I nod a smile at her.
"I don't have a big laugh."
I nod and smile.
"I never laugh."
I nod and smile.
"I don't have a personality."
"Oh, you have a personality."  It slipped out before I could stop it.
That lit the fireworks.  She wanted me to open the door for her rant and I kicked that sucker in by saying she had a personality.  "NO!"  She shouted over me as she leaned over my desk, "I DON'T  I WAS NEVER ALLOWED TO HAVE A PERSONALITY.  I TELL PEOPLE YES AND I DO WHAT I'M TOLD BECAUSE THAT'S HOW I WAS RAISED  I WAS NEVER RAISED TO SMILE OR THINK FOR MYSELF AND SO NOW I DON'T HAVE A PERSONALITY  I'M JUST A MACHINE."
I wanted to disagree, but she was waving that item I'm forced to keep on my desk at me again...once of these days she's going to loosen her grip on it and it's going to hit me in the face.  I can feel it like it's already happened.  And that's why I don't throw out my lawyer's phone number.  I'm starting to fear for my physical safety.
2)  I wanted to be a paramedic when I was a kid.
I must be weak at the end of the day.  Lumbergh leaves about ten minutes before I do each day, so I relax a little bit and that's when she pounces.  How we got into a conversation about what we wanted to be when we were children I have no idea.  I try to avoid conversations about childhood because, as she's told me many times, she never had a childhood.  So how she got me to reveal that, as a childhood fan of the show "Emergency"  I wanted until I was fourteen and my mother crushed my dreams, to be a paramedic.  (That's a blog for another day)  The conversation started out nicely, I do remember that.  She said Emergency was her favorite show as well.  (I find this unlikely since she's told me several times she wasn't allowed to watch TV as a kid...)  She tells me endlessly how she was in the medical field, so we talked about nursing.  And then, it got weird.
That's when she started flailing her arms around and talking about the many, many car accidents she's come up upon in her life and how she's had to drag people from burning cars and give them life saving CPR and how she gave CPR to a corpse on more than one occasion and how she and her ex husband  (and I was shocked...I knew she had kids, but she's never mentioned an ex anything...I thought they hatched in her cliff side nest)  once had to pull a man away from a car accident  (You're really not supposed to move people, are you?)  and how his "neck vein"  (her words, not mine.  I guess that's her medical field talk for JUGULAR.)  was spurting blood. 
"So you know what we have to do, right?"
I shake my head, more worried she's going to pick up that thing on the edge of my desk and fling it at me.
"We have to..." and here she pulls up her top  (this would be the third time she's forced me to see her underwear since she started working at Initech) "and then just pump away on the wound until the ambulance comes."
Confused?  I was too.  According to this statement, if I come upon a serious car accident I'm supposed to drag the victim around for a bit, flash my bra at him, and then do CPR on his jugular.
But hey, she must know what she's doing.  After all, she went to nursing school  (Which is weird since I thought nursing school was college and she has sworn to me she belonged to a cult that wouldn't allow her to go to college which is why while her five siblings all have college degrees and high powered careers, she is stuck working in a bad job...like, you know...mine.  Anyway, she went to nursing school, and she learned high important medical stuff like....well, that you have to wash your hands after using the bathroom.  AND THAT, she tells me, is WHY she washes her hands after every toilet use.
I must have had a different education.  See, I went to teachers school and they didn't teach us to wash our hands after using the bathroom...because we'd been taught that in school when we were in kindergarten!
1) I got a tetanus shot from my new doctor.
I wasn't feeling well the other day because I have a new internal med doc  (my other one quit...that's another blog)  and he insisted I get a tetanus shot.
All very innocent until Noelle C noticed I wasn't as perky as normal.  So I told her I'd gotten a new doctor and that I liked him after our first meeting, he seemed fairly thorough.
She asked his name.
I'm an idiot.  I told her his name.
And now she has a new doctor.  Mine.  Lord help us all.
She was going to meet with him on Friday so of course on Thursday when Lumbergh left she asked me how she should inform him that she didn't want to follow any medical orders but her own.  I suggested just asking him questions about how he would approach her various medical conditions and if she didn't like the answers, she didn't have to go to him.
She then picked up that thing I'm forced to keep on my desk and started waving it around talking about her previous doctor who wanted to prescribe something for her asthma that would melt her bones and how she had a friend who had melted bones and now that friend had to have someone help her to the bathroom.
Boy, I hope her friend knew to wash her hands afterwards.
So now not only is going to to my new doctor...she'll tell him I referred her to him, and she'll probably smack the poor guy in the head with a stack out outdated magazines.
And I will need a new doctor.

Fun Fact Friday: Now that it's dead, Sarah reveals a childhood dream.

Happy Friday all! What do you want to be when you grow up? That's a question we ask little kids...and I haven't a clue why....