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Archive for September, 2008

sort of late, but not without meaning.  the things this man did for humanity are unquestionable.  not to mention the fact that he was married to Joanne for 50 years (FIFTY YEARS PEOPLE), with nary a blip on the radar (that i know of, which is not to say there was a blip, there may have been one…after all, they were married for FIFTY YEARS and quite probably there was a blip or two, but what a testament that I can’t think of one).

If the man hadn’t been a brilliant actor and an amazing philanthropist, I would still give him mad props for managing to stay married to a lady for 50 years…I love that, even though I will never experience that. 

And that makes me a little bit sad. 

But, here is my favorite clip from my favorite Paul Newman movie.  Enjoy as much as i do.

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Every year with the State Fair of Texas rolls around, I get all nostalgic. 

And it always goes like this…

i get all nostalgic that when Glen Rose had their ‘day at the fair,’ when they took busloads of kids to the fair, I never had the money to actually go, so I was one of the few that would be left at GRHS actually attending Home and Family and American Government classes…while all of my friends were at the freaking STATE FAIR OF TEXAS…and eating corny dogs and urinating in revolting, nasty port-a-potties.

And i was always so envious.  I wanted to go to the fair.  I wanted to eat Fletcher’s corny dogs.  I wanted to go to the bathroom in these disgusting port-a-potties.

The year that the ex and I finally did go to the fair, I reckon I was about 22.  I think we left The Teacher with mother while we went off to consume corny dogs and funnel cakes at the fair.  We found someplace to park that wasn’t in someone’s yard and went on in. 

and let me tell you one thing, it wasn’t very long after we passed through those gates that it became clearly apparent we were there on a special day.

A day that the STATE FAIR OF TEXAS had allocated as a special day for a special faction of society.

As the ex and i strolled the fair grounds, he began to notice that some of our fellow fair goers were wearing buttons and stickers that were rainbows and triangles…and by some, I mean everyone but us.  I’m telling you people that everyone in Fair Park besides us was either wearing a rainbow pin or wearing rainbow clothes or sporting a same-sex love mate on their arm.

I will never, ever forget walking down the esplanade and having the ex ask me ‘uh, what’s with all the rainbow pins?’

And I remember that I laughed first. 

Then, with much GLEE, i informed him that it was GAY DAY AT THE FAIR SQUEEEEEEE.

The whole rest of the day I gleefully reminded the ex that he was wearing khaki shorts and sort of hike-y boots and that the ‘gays’ LOVED that look, and the whole, ENTIRE rest of the day at the fair, that man spent making sure that none of the GAYS were checking him out in his Cabela’s gear.

I thought I would die of funny.

See, by that time I had realized that i didn’t give a shit who loved who…

the ex…not so much.

and still…not so much.

So…

funny that one of my fondest memories is of us at the GAY DAY AT THE FAIR and me struggling to keep from laughing out loud all day at his blatant GAY FEAR.

NEWSFLASH STRAIGHT GUY WITH YOUR WIFE…

NOT hitting on you, even though you are wearing killer Cabela khaki cargo shorts…

though, oh my god, if one of the GAYS had hit on him, my life would have been totally fulfilled if i could have been there to see it.

portrait from the past, part uno.

there will be more.

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And Sometimes…We Cry

 

Doing what I do, and what I have done for 14 years now, I have seen stuff come across my desk that makes me stop and think…and a lot of times I cry…and many times I stop…note the name of the patient…and shoot up a prayer. 

Sure, this is just a job and I should just type or edit whatever comes across my desk…

Well, sorry…

I’m a person, and regardless of the fact that i am supposed to just sit here and type/edit shit and some of my colleagues have told me before that i need to just not get so involved in the stuff that i have come through my desk…

Well, newsflash.

I am not that good at disassociating myself to the point that I can hear this stuff and not be affected. 

For instance.

At my old job, I was typing ER stuff…and i had this report come through about a dad who SET HIMSELF ON FIRE in front of his two kids and his wife…

Thanks to the fact that the dictator got real specific about what went down, I had to type up how his kids begged him not to run after he SET HIMSELF ON FIRE.  I had to listen about how his wife and children, 11 and 7, watched their husband and father incinerate himself, despite the cries of ‘DADDY DON’T RUN.’ 

That was the first report I ever did that i went back to see what happened after that…

and the dad died.  the day after he put his wife and children through something that they will never get past.

The second time I let myself get tied up too much in a report was this motorcycle accident where one of the riders was damn near decapitated.  It was just horrific enough that I needed to know what exactly happened, beside what the doctor was telling me…

which amounted to…

43-year-old female involved in a severe motorcycle versus automobile accident.

She didn’t make it either, and i cried.  She had kids…and grandkids.

When I started working for this company, I was placed on a high-end account that was a pediatric hospital. 

and i knew pretty quick that i wasn’t going to be able to type stuff about kids the same age as The Boy, whose parents took them into the doctor for a simple rash that turned out to be CANCER.

Or, when I typed for the genetics clinic and folks had kids who had genetic errors in their little bodies that made growing up and eating chicken nuggets and fries from McDonald’s an impossibility…and i typed up stuff where people brought their kids in to the doctor only to be told that their baby would never grow up.

And it absolutely KILLED ME.

The day that i asked my account lead to take me off that account was the day that i had to type the report where these parents brought their Boy into the doc to see what was the deal with his leg pain and they found out that the kid had cancer.

sue me.

i couldn’t do it any longer.

But you know what? 

Sometimes it doesn’t get better.

On other accounts i had, I got to type up reports about 35-year-old women with stage IV breast cancer who had 2-year-old babies to care for, and 60-year-old ladies who had beaten the cancer once, twice, three times…

only to come in and find out that their cancer had metastasized to their liver and kidneys and lungs.

It is those times that I stop what I am doing and make a note of this patient’s name and their loved one’s names and stop and say a prayer for them and their families.

never once, when i type up a report where the patient is discharged to hospice care, do I not stop for a second and say a little prayer…or a big prayer…for the patient and their family. 

And then this happened.

the other day, i was typing away, minding my own business, when my manager asked me if I could do a STAT.

So, being the team player I am, of course i said, yes.

So, what i wound up with was a trauma victim, a 15-year-old trauma victim, who had been beaten to death by two older men. 

As I typed about this kids’s mortal wounds and the ER staff’s efforts to keep this kid alive, I just felt sick.  Sick and hungry that they found the mother effers who did this to this kid.  i had to sit here and type about the blunt force trauma and the fact that his little heart just stopped beating.

it made my heart hurt, yet i was thinking OH GANG BANGER…

SO, today i decided to check into it…which is never really a good idea for us who type this stuff…it is much better to just type it with your ears plugged and go on about your business…

but for this case, i had to know if they’d caught the people that had killed this kid.

and they did.

and guess what they killed this kid over?

a cell phone and 10 bucks.

that boy died over a cell phone and 10 bucks that he probably would have just given the sumbitches that dealt the poor boy ‘blunt force trauma to the head.’

I love my job, but to try to do this job and not get emotionally vested sometimes…

well, it isn’t realistic.

I can’t do this job and not be emotionally vested.

When I type reports where people bring their kids to the doctor for something seemingly benign, like a rash, and they find out their baby has cancer, and when I type up stuff about folks who have cancer that has spread to their  livers….and when i have to type up TRAUMA 3…just know that I can’t do that on this end without getting emotionally vested.

Maybe some folks can do it, but they aren’t me.

So, what my job means is that i type a lot of tragedy.  And i try as best I can to take my Boy out of the mix, but the fact that I had an 8-year-old was the main reason that i had to quit it… because I couldn’t take my boy out of the mix anytime I typed a report where a boy his age started feeling poorly and got a rash…and the end find was bad.

So, I will glady type/edit an account where the biggest problem might be…uh

seborrheic dermatitis.

Seborrheic dermatitis does not make me cry.

So, yes, sometimes we cry…but sometimes we pray…

We, on this end of the medical record, and by ‘we’ I mean me…

well, i am here to tell you that when scary stuff comes across my desk…kids with cancer…or moms with cancer…or grandparents with cancer…or kids who are beaten to death for their cell phone.

i note their names and i say a prayer.

cancer sucks…random violence sucks.

all i can do is give them the respect of noting their names and sending a prayer. 

This job is great for folks who don’t note all this…sometimes not so good for those of us who do.

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Random Update…and TV Stuff

Let’s see…since we last chatted, what has gone on?  Hell, I had to go look.  Okay, I went and looked.  I talked about the Boy’s birthday celebration at the MoneyPit that is the Main Event.  So, what’s next.

Work.  Well, folks, work sucks.  After a year of this nirvana of editing, I have suddenly been demoted back to typing…largely because someone ‘up there’ decided we needed to hire two more ‘hybrids’ to edit/type.  See, at my company, we are hybrids…which means that we edit if there is stuff to edit and if not, guess what…YOU GET TO TYPE.

and with the addition of NOT ONE BUT TWO new hybrids…well, guess what?  THERE ISN’T SHIT TO DO.  So, guess who’s typing.

THAT WOULD BE ME.

I’m embracing my new role as much as I can…even though i haven’t typed production in a year and my keystrokes suck big time…and just this last pay period I have sucked up more than half of my PTO time to make up the difference in my paycheck. 

But, since this job has been the best one I’ve ever had, i will sit here and do what is necessary to pay the bills and bite my tongue and not say to the ‘uppers’ WHAT THE HELL WERE YOU THINKING HIRING TWO MORE EDITORS WHEN THERE WASN’T ENOUGH FOR US TO DO TO BEGIN WITH.

Does that make sense to anyone?  SERIOUSLY?

in an utterance????

ARGHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

At any rate, what i am left to deal with is pretty extreme right elbow pain, and by that I mean that i can’t really extend it a whole lot without it hurting and i can’t really abduct it too much without it hurting.  who’da thought that what MIGHT make me go to the doctor is a stupid elbow problem?

But it just might. 

It hurts that bad…but jjust the right one…not the left.

in other news, much more important news, my friends down on the coast are in the state of repair.  who knew that if 4 inches of the Bay encroaches in your house that you have to replace YOUR FLOORS, CARPET AND TILE, HALF YOUR WALLS, YOUR CABINETS, YOUR BATHTUBS, AND YOUR SHOWERS.  Apparently, mold becomes a big issue when salt water takes over your house. 

Who knew?

I did not. 

I do now, and now I have stopped saying stupid shit like well, at least you still have a house. 

OH, also, here’s the thing.

these folks who have been damaged are more than welcome to tear stuff out of their place, but until the adjuster comes, they can’t replace anything…and given the fact that there are only about 1,300,500 claims, there is no telling how long it will take before my friend can start to put her home back together…

and yes, she understands that she is one of the lucky ones.

and yet, in more OTHER NEWS…

SOME OF MY TV SHOWS ARE BACK ON!!!!  with some new ones to try.

Tonight we welcomed back NCIS, a cute and quirky little quai-crime show…followed by The Mentalist, which the paper deemed “watchable,” but we found it much more than watchable.  We found it to be quite compelling and smart and quirky…and I would suggest that y’all give it a try…which was followed by Without a Trace, which, regardless of the fact that i know how every story is going to end…i still watch it. 
Last night, we got 2-1/2 Men back, which made me exceedingly happy…and tomorrow night we get Old Christine back, which makes me so happy I could nearly pee myself because she is named Christine and I am a Christine and I’m about her age and can relate far too closely to a lot of the stuff she deals with.

AND THURSDAY, don’t even get me started because SURVIVOR starts again and GREY’S starts…

oh my good Loward, my life begins again. 

and in other news, it has been brought to my attention that i made an ass-kickin meatloaf and the Teacher and i have decided that rather than stupid candles that smell like ‘grandmaws cookies’ or ‘punkin pie,’ we should be trying to market stuff that smells like ‘meatloaf’ and ‘turkey and dressing’ and ‘pot roast.’

I mean, seriously, if you can make things smell sweet, can’t you make things smell savory? 

also, if you take this and go with it…you’re a big stealer of ideas…this one was mine…ALL MINE. 

now I am going to work on the chemistry of making a ‘pork and saurkraut’ candle.

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I had the opportunity to have lunch with my friend, Kathy, today.  We’d had this planned for a week.  We were going to meet up here at the casa and hit up the Burger Bar, get us some of the best burgers in the UNIVERSE and head to the park to have a nice lunch.  Rob was going to join us, which only made it better.  

What a lovely way to spend your lunchtime, right?

Yet, in my head, the first thing that went through my brain upon awakening, and after I put in my eyedrops, was…

Oh man, I have to get dressed and go OUT there amongst people. 

Now to be sure, spending time with my friend Kathy is no chore.  I enjoy our time together immensely.

Yet, getting out and going to lunch in the park made my brain go WAIT…THERE IS SO MUCH MORE YOU NEED TO DO…YOU COULD WORK, YOU COULD CLEAN THE LIVING ROOM…WHAT WERE YOU THINKING WHEN YOU SAID YOU WOULD HAVE LUNCH, YOU DUMB BITCH?

The thing is…that EVERY SINGLE TIME I question whether I should take some time for myself and go to lunch, when I actually do it, I realize that I need to do that whole ‘stop what you’re doing or what you plan to do or what you won’t do if you did stay home,’ more often.

I just had the best time sitting at the picnic table with Kathy, and Rob, while he was there…

I think i need to do that more often…I need to get to the place where i realize that it is okay sometimes to stop…stop what you are doing…what you are planning on doing…

and just go have a really good burger in the park with a good friend and your husband on a day that was absolutely perfect for doing it.  I realize that i need to stop what I’m doing every day and have some interaction with another human in PERSON. 

and most importantly, I need to realize that rather than thinking about what i should be doing, instead of sitting in the park and having a good chat, (and today I can say for real that i didn’t do that), I should just go with it…and stop thinking about what i should be doing and have fun with what I AM doing. 

I think sometimes we get way too keyed up about what we think we need to be doing instead of doing the things that will be GOOD FOR US. 

Thank you, Kathy, for spending some of my down time with me today.

 

Make me do that again.

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Boys…

more specifically…10-year-old boys…

First, I’ve never had one.  The Boy is my first.  Before him, I had three girls.  I have a deep, deep history of having 10-year-old girls around…overnights and carfulls of them.

Until today, i have never had a carful of 10-year-old boys.

And after today, let me just go on record to say that 10-year-old girls can’t hold a candle to 10-year-old boys in:

  • VOLUME.  I’m here to tell you that in sheer volume, three 10-year-old boys BURY 10-year-old girls in the volume column.  Granted, they aren’t as high pitched and squealy, but MAN, are they loud. 
  • AMOUNT OF TALKING.  I have had twice the amount of 10-year-old girls in my car before (6) and they didn’t talk NEARLY as much as the three 10-year-old boys I had in my care today.  The Senior, who graciously agreed to go with today, and I both agreed on this point.  As chatty as girls can be…these three put them all to shame.
  • THE USE OF THE WORD ‘DUDE.’  Apparently, when you are 10, addressing your buddy as ‘Dude,’ is far easier than saying the ‘Dude’s’ name.  ‘Dude’ count today…about 5475.
  • FARTS.  My Boy has grown up in a household of women.  This has really curbed the fartiness of being a boy.  Given we don’t think farts are funny, he has never really embraced his boy fartiness.  In a closed car.  So, when in the company of two other boys who fully embrace their fartiness in the car…let’s just say that The Senior and i weren’t the only ones who were all like ENOUGH WITH THE FARTINESS ALREADY.  The Boy’s future girlfriends will be forever thankful that he grew up in a houseful of women who didn’t think it was funny if he ripped one off in the van.
  • THE ABILITY TO HEAR EVERY QUESTIONABLE LYRIC HEARD ON TOP-40 RADIO.   And all I have to say is THANKS KISS-FM for playing songs that have more ‘bitches’ than I can catch and more references to ‘run and coke’ than I can catch, and more references to ‘between the sheets,’ than I can catch.  About the time The Senior said ‘oh, they aren’t listening,’ we’d hear from the back backseat confirmation that they not only heard, but heard and found it HILARIOUS.
  • USE OF THE PHRASE ‘WHAT THE _______’  Granted, they don’t SAY the blank, but they certainly embrace saying it anyway.  This particular little verbal exercise is fueled by the commercials that do the same thing.  Personally, i have ixnayed the ‘what the _____’ out of The Boy’s vocabulary, just because. 
  • ROCKING THE VAN.  In terms of simple movement of the vehicle, three 10-year-old boys can rock a vehicle much more than six 10-year-old girls.  These three boys had our van a’rockin to the extent where folks wouldn’t come a’knockin.
  • INTERACTION WITH OTHER INHABITANTS OF VEHICLES AROUND US.  These boys got so tickled waving at the folks behind us and beside us…and in looking in the rearview, the folks behind us also were tickled by it.  Really, what they were probably thinking was ‘man, that poor mom is probably about to go nutso with all the rockin’ and the fartin’ and the wavin,’ but they were always smiling.  They’d probably had a carload of 10-year-old boys in THEIR cars in their past.

Today, you see, I took The Boy and two of his buddies up to this entertainment complex to celebrate The Boy’s 10th birthday, which was really September 6, but he was sick, so we had to reschedule. 

And, boy, did they have a big time. 

And that makes me happy happy as a mom.

But…

DAMN.

Talk about a dadgum money pit.

Do you even realize how fast three 10-year-olds run through a 20-dollar card in a place like that? 

TRY ABOUT 1 HOUR.

Yep, by the time it was time for them to play laser tag, all of their cards were at ZERO BALANCE. 

and what did that mean for me?

well, the next laser tag game was scheduled in 45 MINUTES…

Which meant…I had to get the three 10-year-olds some more DOLLARS on their cards to hold them over until the laser tag game. 

HELLO.  THIS IS HOW WE MAKE OUR MONEY.

CHING CHING CHING CHANG

And you know what?

WORTH EVERY PENNY.

See, The Boy, while you would think he is the ‘spoiled one,’ since he is the ‘baby,’ I’m here to tell you he has not had the birthday parties that his older sisters have had.  Largely because his birthdays always happen the first 2 weeks of school, when we don’t really know anyone yet and aren’t really ready to invite the whole class because we don’t really do large scale parties, he’s been very used to family/neighbor parties with a few friends. 

So, this year…the year he turned 10, I decided that this would be a good year for him…a good present and a good celebration. 

We won’t talk about the dollars, okay?

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Well Hell…

I keep missing my window to do this thing…the last couple of evenings we’ve gone in earlier than my blogging time usually is.  Tonight, I am still here waiting for the gal from payroll, who is in CALIFORNIA, to call me back…

which isn’t happening.

even though i left her a voicemail saying CALL ME

Tomorrow, I will be at church, then taking the Boy and his friends to play at an arcade/laser tag sort of place…so I won’t be able to conference with her if she does call…

which means I will make it on the

bad list

i’m sort of hating this job at the moment

I’ll be back when i am not so glass half empty

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