Sunday, February 28, 2010

Mr. Somebody Needs A Slap

Our school district has the organizational skills of a dead squid.

Most send home information about school sports, and tell us important things like when practice starts, where it's held, if equipment is needed, and if a physical is needed.

Not our school district. Instead, they have a fancy-schmancy, new electronic dialer system that calls us at 3:00am with a recorded message anytime there's a school closing. Or it calls during dinner to tell us there's a bake sale on Friday.

Sports tryouts? PTA meetings? Nope. Nada. Nothing.

Instead, we rely on the teenager grapevine approach:

Mooooom!” whines the teenager living in our household, “I need to get a physical by next week so I can play soccer.”

“I thought you were going to get all the information first, so we could talk about it,” I reminded her.

“But I just found out tryouts are next week!”

“Okay. So what time is soccer practice over?” I asked.

“I don't know,” says child.

“Is there a sports bus that takes the kids home afterwards?”

“I don't know.”

“Who is the coach? I'll just call him.”

“I don't know.”

“How do you know tryouts are next week?”

“My friends told me.”

“Who told them?”


“Okay, so Mr. Somebody came to them in a vision and told them of the impending tryouts? Really? You're not seriously telling me that no one knows when and where practice is, who the coach is, and how long it will be?”

Teenager stomps off.

Until recently, I had a very flexible work schedule. During that time, I encouraged my daughter to do sports or other extra curricular activity. She couldn't have been bothered.

Now that I have ZERO job flexibility, and work an hour away, playing school soccer has become a moral imperative.


To sum up: My job stinks like an old gym sock, and now I've got a pissed off teenager too.

I really need to play the lottery more often.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

And Also...

Yay! Another blizzard!

Last night we got about six inches. That's on top of the ten left over from the storm two weeks ago.

There's two large glaciers at the end of the driveway.

So, to my mother, who is visiting her brother and sister in Hawaii right now - you got out of Dodge just in time!!

Hickory Dickory Dock. No Mouse And No Clock. But We Got Plenty Of Beer.....

The radio is constantly playing this "Tik Tok" song by a young whippersnapper called Kesha. I had to admit it had a hook. I almost liked it 'til I heard the rest of the song. Yeeeeesh:

"Before I leave, brush my teef with a bottle of Jack
'Cause when I leave for the night, I ain't coming back"

Apparently she's not heard of tooth decay or toothpaste. And Jack? Seriously?

"Aint got a care in the world, but got plenty of beer
Aint got no money in my pocket, but I'm already here"

Okay. I can identify.......that's what we used to call freshman year in college.

"And now, the dudes are lining up cause they hear we got swagger"

Swagger. It just sounds silly. Also, white girls should not use that word. Ever.

But seriously, I laughed out loud at the Mick Jagger reference:

"But we kick em to the curb unless they look like Mick Jagger"

She wants guys that look like Mick Jagger? Really?? Has she seen Mick lately?

Actually, has she EVER seen Mick? I know he was a heartthrob back in the sixties and seventies, but even the twenty-something Mick is, well......ew.

And the last bit:

"Boys tryin' to touch my junk, junk"

Girls have “junk”? I thought only guys had junk.

I'm so confused.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Hot Flash

I woke up at 3:00am this morning. It was like turning on a light. One minute I was asleep, the next I was awake.

Also, massive headache. I go downstairs to grab some ibuprofen and a glass of water.

The bottle was empty. I grumble about why someone thought to put an empty bottle back into the cabinet.

Good news! There's an unopened one. Except, have you ever tried opening one whilst half a asleep and with a pounding head? It goes something like this:

1) Pry open box. The flap won't open along the glue line, so I end up shredding the box. It looks like a giant rat ate through it.

2) Cut finger on plasticky seal around the top of bottle. There's supposed to be a perforated spot to tear it off, but do you really think I can find it at 3:00am?

3) Align arrows, pop lid.

4) Jam finger through foil seal found across the top of bottle. Bleed some more.

5) Grab three of those sweet, sweet ibuprofenz, because at this point, three is the only way to deaden the pain in my head and fingers.

6) Stumble back upstairs.

The cat claimed my warm spot, so he needs to be extracted. I curl back up for that last hour or so of sleep, and the hot flashes start. I feel too young for this, but hey, I'm starting to come to terms with my inner crone.

Toss blankets off me, onto cat. The frosty, fifty degree room starts to cool me off, and I start drifting back to sleep. This is when the cat decides it's a really great time for a bath. A loud, gross bath.





I poke the cat gently with my foot. No change.


Poke again. The bathing pauses for a second, then resumes with gusto.


I slide my foot under the the cat, and start gingerly rolling him over to make him stop. He barely notices until he almost falls off the bed.

Half hour later......

Body temperature back to normal. Blanket back in place. Sleeping cat securely wedged against my bum.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

That Sucker Punch Of Reality

I'm angry. I'm frustrated.

I promised myself I'd cut back on the work-related postings, because: a) it will eventually bore people, and b) I really don't want to be identified.

After all, I still need a steady paycheck.


I've been fuming for a few days now, and writing is theraputic.

Anyway, The Job.

Something happened.... an occurrence that showed me exactly where I stand.

I've never been verbally abused or distrusted at any job in the last twenty years, but at this company it's standard operating procedure. A daily sucker punch in the face.

Some of my coworkers who noticed my appalled reaction tell me I have thin skin. This is the way it's done here. Get used to it.

Nice, huh?

Sunday, February 14, 2010


When did English class become “Language Arts”? Why must there be a separate class for “Reading”?

When I was in school (back in the Dark Ages), it was called “English Class”, and included diagramming sentences, identifying dangling participles, as well as reading literature.

I've voiced my concern about the quality of our schools before. It's not going downhill anymore. It has now crashed, broken at the bottom of the hill, headfirst in a snowpile.

My daughter has an assignment to do a book report. The teacher wants the students to draw several scenes from the book, and put it together in picture-book style. She wanted them to do the picture-book as if they were making it for a first grader. Those were her exact instructions. It was on the assignment handout sheet.

This is junior high school. They're using crayons and glue for book reports. Way to prepare them for college!

I'm not alone here either. The Gormogons did a very nice job summing it up here.

Want to hear the best part??? My daughter came home with a list of vocabulary words to study and use in a sentence. One of these words was “vagabond”. You want to know how the teacher was pronouncing it?


What is that? Super glue for the hoo-hoo?

So, all you ladies out there, have a Happy Valentine's Day, and don't forget your VAJ-a-bond!!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Blizzard Part 2

Well, most of my photos turned out like crap, but here's the ones that were halfway decent. You can click to enlarge....

This ones my favorite:

This used to be a hedge:

More hedge:

The woods behind the house:

The sky was so clear and amazing today:

Blizzard Part 1

We have approximately fifteen inches of snow here in Pennsylvania. Some areas got more, some less. Fifteeen is more than enough.

The governor hasn't reopened the main highway near here. Since I live in the middle of Nowheresville, many of our secondary roads are still unplowed and closed.

We normally have snowy winters here, and the average storm can often bring us four to five inches at a time. However, this is a bit extraordinary.

Here's some preliminary photos from last night. I'll post more later today.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Where's My Shovel?

Yep. Haven't posted in two weeks. Work put me on call - which is so appropriate when you're still new and haven't got a grip on things yet.

My sleep schedule's been reversed because the on call phone only goes off at 2am.

As Murphy's Law would have it, noctural server/application issues always require a minimum of four hours to fix. Before you know it, it's 6am and time to get the kiddo off to school, and you haven't slept yet.

At least the company's reasonable about it. If you worked all night, you're allowed to catch a few zzzz's before heading into the office, or logging in from home.

However, last week was truly the most ludicrous experience to date.

I spent most of my time dealing with the usual problem: getting a straight answer, in English, from several coworkers.

Let me put it this way: if I asked them to give me step by step instructions for shoveling a driveway, they would respond with: "Use a shovel".

While this is technically correct, as well as blaringly obvious, it tells us nothing about where you get the shovel, how you use it, and where you throw the snow.

Speaking of which, we are currently experiencing a blizzard here in the Northeast.

Thankfully, I DO know how to use a shovel.