How Do I Love Thee January?

img_2956

Let me count the ways.  A list of all the good things about this winter month from hell.

  1. There aren’t any.
  2. Just kidding, there’s got to be something.
  3. Penguin Awareness Day is coming up on the 20th (and Squirrel Appreciation Day on the 21st).  (You can find more weird days to observe and celebrate here). If you would like to ignore the U.S. presidential inauguration there are obviously many more important and worthwhile things happening this month on which to redirect your time and attention.
  4. Daylight is increasing by leaps and bounds.  Or minutes if you want to be realistic.
  5. A week and 2/7ths of this month are over already. Yay!
  6. Many people richer and smarter than I am are leaving Canada and going south to get warmed up.  This means they can feel all smug about the crappy weather they’re missing and the rest of us will be delighted to accept admiration for our perseverance and stoicism in sticking around and facing the elements. I will also happily accept sympathy and pity.
  7. There are all kinds of sales everywhere this month, and this is a good thing for me because I’m so done with shopping from the previous month I feel no temptation at all to be out there saving money on things I don’t need.
  8. There are at least three good things going on in number seven.  So maybe we can round this up at the end.
  9. The shortbread cookies are almost all gone. I think we may be down to our last dozen.  Finishing them is W’s responsibility and he continues to be up for the challenge.
  10. The list of artists who were approached to perform at the inauguration, and refused,  continues to grow.  Penguin awareness Day is looking better and better.

And now I’m going to sneak in a knee complaint just to let all you knee problem people know how much sincere empathy I have for you after my week of hobbling around swearing.  Holy crap a hurting knee is awful.  The other day I sat down awkwardly and it snapped and crunched and shot excruciating pain to all my extremities at once (I may be exaggerating, but only very slightly, really) and since then it has been getting progressively better.  Not the cure I would necessarily recommend. Sitting around with my leg elevated and straight and having W cook and do laundry for me is my favourite method so far.

Okay!  Back to enjoying this gloriously cold snowy overcast day!  There might not be too many more of them left!  I just rolled my eyes so hard I gave myself a headache.

Advertisements

A Fork Tale

Daily Prompt: 

Write a post about anything you’d like, but be sure to include this sentence somewhere in the final paragraph:

“He tried to hit me with a forklift!”

***********

Clifton Carmichael is a dutiful son.  He goes to visit his 89-year-old mother in the seniors residence every day and patiently listens to all her complaints.angry

The food is terrible here.  Everything is mush.  The coffee is like dishwater.  And those caregivers!  Why do they always mumble and never speak up.? And they don’t listen either.  I tried to tell them that some of my best articles of clothing have been lost by the facility laundry.  Anybody could be wearing my things!  I wanted to keep a look out for them but someone has gone off with my good glasses too.  I don’t think I’m wrong to strongly suspect that old coot, Ernie.  You remember Ernie?  They’ve forced me to share a table with him in the dining room and he is downright cantankerous and extremely unpleasant.  I have no idea why.  I try to be nice, I surely do, but I do not like him, not one little bit.  Why, just the other day he rudely disrupted dinner by waving his cutlery around at me in a very menacing manner.  Clifton, are you listening to me? 

Hmmm…?  Of course mother.  Ernie.  Are you getting along any better with Ernie now?

He tried to hit me with a fork, Clift!

A forklift?  Mama, don’t be ridiculous.  And don’t fret, nobody could get a forklift past the security doors.

A fork, Clift.  FORK!  FORK!  FORK!

Mother,  please!  Shush – such language!  You’ve imagined the forklift.  I’ll get the nurse to give you something to calm your nerves.

Get her to give something to that Fork King, Ernie, why don’t you? He’s the villainous silverware fiend!  Oh, never mind.  Nobody listens to me.  Go home Clifton.  I can look after myself.

Yes. Yes, alright.  I do believe you can.

Clifton Carmichael sighs as he gets up and kisses the top of his mother’s silver head.  Forklifts in the dining room.  Good God, he thinks as he bids her goodbye, what next?

Adding Up the Little Things

Piglet (Winnie-the-Pooh)

Piglet (Winnie-the-Pooh) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Piglet noticed that even though he had a Very Small Heart, it could hold a rather large amount of Gratitude.”
– A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh

Last night when I was standing in the kitchen vacantly staring into a cupboard for five minutes, W asked me what I was looking for, and that made me remember it was ice cubes.  Whereupon I went directly to the fridge and found them.  I should mention here that W is a serious maker of ice cubes.  Our trays are never empty.  If we ever get an ice making fridge he will probably cry.

Then he asked me why there was a small hand-held mirror sitting on the kitchen counter.  That would be because I picked it up instead of my empty coffee cup to bring it from the computer to the dishwasher.  (And where is the coffee cup?) Oh… I’m not really worried about that, I’m sure it will turn up.

Now if you think this is heading towards my being grateful for slowly losing my mind, you would be wrong.  What I’m thankful for is W’s ability to refrain from making disparaging comments about my various scatter brained and brain-dead moments.  Sometimes he’ll make his confused face, or raise his eyebrows or roll his eyes, and sometimes he’ll do all three of those things at once, but he doesn’t really say much.  There might have been a time in our marriage when he did say a lot of things, but apparently nothing helped or made any difference and I suppose he’s finally just given up.

A few months ago we got a bill for our household insurance (they send the stupid thing three months before it comes due so they’re just asking for trouble, really) and I put it away in a safe place, and then about a week later they sent a credit statement of fifty some dollars for the same account.  So I decided I would wait for them to get out their calculators and send me a revised bill with the proper final amount owing on it and then I would pay them.  But that didn’t happen, and instead, much much later,  we received a rather rude letter telling us our account was past due and our insurance would be cancelled if we didn’t pay the mystery amount immediately.  I called them assholes.  W. agreed that they were indeed assholes, but urged me to pay them anyway.  So I did.

What he didn’t say was OMG, you have GOT to get ORGANIZED and KEEP UP with this shit!   So I am very grateful for that. Because he could have said it, and it would have been true, but then I would have stomped off and thrown some things, so he saved us from all that.

I don’t really want to get into the grocery fiascos we’ve had where we end up with three identical peanut butter jars and matching boxes of cereal, or enough salad dressing to last a lifetime – except that it doesn’t because of all those annoying expiry dates that you can’t believe are a year old already by the time you look at them.  W has just quietly taken over most of the food shopping.  He makes one list – ONE!  and doesn’t misplace it.  I married a grocery shopping genius. Wish I’d known that long before now.  Who knew men were capable of picking up more than just beer and fishing tackle.

W still lets me muck about doing most of the cooking but then he helps to clean up.  Amazing.  He either loves me a lot or he simply can’t stand looking at the mess for the next 12 to 24 hours.  I don’t really care why he does it, I’m just incredibly grateful that he does.  And he also turns on the dishwasher and knows how to empty it.  When he brings home take out I’m not sure which one of us is the most ecstatically thankful and appreciative and more than willing to rinse out the styrofoam containers and pop them in the recycle bin.

He always tells me who’s playing hockey or football or basketball on tv and then later he tells me who won, so I never have to watch any televised sporting events.  He lets me know when something interesting or earth shattering has happened in the world so I never have to pick up a newspaper and read it for myself.  He changes my tires and checks the oil in my car and even takes it to the car wash for me when we can no longer remember what color it used to be.

He clears the snow from our driveway and drives me to work when it’s forty below.  He says he’s concerned about my car sitting out in the cold all day, but I think he might also be concerned about me getting stranded with a vehicle that won’t start.   He lets me paint and hang pictures and rearrange the furniture however and whenever the mood strikes me.  (I’ve had a lot of bizarre moods over the years.)  If he’s not exactly supportive of some of my interests and hobbies and pastimes, he has never discouraged me either or interfered with my pursuit of them.

He does his own laundry!  We’ve been headed in this direction ever since I shrunk every woolen item he owned and turned all his underwear pink.  Whenever I put my clothes in the washing machine and forget about them, they will miraculously appear clean and dry and folded in a neat pile on my dresser half a day later.  Once I was going to complain about how the towels were folded but thankfully I was able to shut myself up before I ruined everything.

This man buys me spiced rum even though he hates it himself.  He listens to me complain about work even though he really doesn’t want to hear about it.  He never interrupts me when I’m reading, or doing things on my phone, or sitting at the computer for way longer than could possibly be healthy.

He asks me for my opinion.  He wants to know what I think.  He tells me I should do whatever makes me happy.

How in the world could I not be grateful for all that.

Hit Where One Lives

Annoying Orange: Kitchen Carnage

Annoying Orange: Kitchen Carnage (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This morning I was awake at five o’clock and could not go back to sleep.  So I decided to get up and move some furniture around.  Seriously.  This is the kind of thing I find myself doing when I’m home alone.  I vacuumed and did a bunch of bedding laundry and generally spent a lot of time taking things downstairs and bringing different things back upstairs. So basically, putting many things in many different places. Hmm.  Writing it down like this makes it sound easy. It was not. Some of those things were big and awkward and heavy.

Now I’m tired,  I have a sore shoulder, an aching wrist, a few bruises and a crappy attitude.  The timing is perfect to answer an annoying question or two.

What do you find annoying, irritating or unbearable in these categories?

Candy? Chips? We're Not Sure

Candy? Chips? We’re Not Sure (Photo credit: nep)

Candy –  gooey, sticky, messy, chewy, sickeningly sweet.  Does that cover all of it?

Song– constant repetition from outside sources, and even worse, inside my own head

Bad Habit– talking loudly on a cell phone in a public place.

School subject– before an exam, memorizing a bunch of hooey that you will never again need to know in this lifetime.

Personality Trait– refusing to listen to the other side of the story, forming an opinion without getting all the facts

Colour– flourescent lime green

Season– long, cold, dark, stormy, miserable winter

Animal– an annoying, irritating unbearable animal doesn’t really exist.  Perhaps we should ask animals for their opinion of us.

Celebrity– the whole idea of being famous and having your personal life thrown out there to the wolves.

Foods – how we process things to death and then wonder why we’re dying from eating them

Tone of voice– high squeaky little girl baby talk from the mouth of an adult

Style of music– I really, really do not like Rap.

Vehicle– Any vehicle can be annoying given the right irritating driver.

Sound– crying,  when you feel powerless to soothe the hurt

Event– anything that requires ridiculous amounts of money to pull off, when something simple and less lavish gets the same result.

Anything else? Oh, probably, but that’s enough negativity for one day, wouldn’t you say?  I’m going to go ice my shoulder and sulk for a while.  But it won’t be an unbearable sulk, just a mildly annoying one.

Take A Deep Breath and Keep on Reading

Yesterday was a day for reading.  At least that’s the decision I came to around four o’clock in the afternoon when I realized I had done nothing else all day.  By that time there was really no point in starting something new, and I felt I might as well just carry on.  So I did.

I’m not saying Stephanie Plum has taken over my life or that I will die miserable and unfulfilled if I never meet a real life friend like Lula.  I will say I’m nearing the end of Four to Score by Janet Evanovitch. 

(The mystery of whether or not Stephanie and Joe Morelli will at last do what they’ve been wanting to do for three and a half books is finally concluded satisfactorily – thank God for putting me out of my misery on that ‘score’.) (But I digress.) (And that wasn’t really a spoiler, was it?  I mean, it’s not like you couldn’t see it coming from the beginning.)

Anyway, although by all outward appearances it would seem I’ve been sitting on my ass doing absolutely nothing for a very long time, here’s the thing.  I’m actively contributing to the authors happiness by purchasing her books.  One after the other.  Compulsively, with little debate and minimum hesitation.  Because when I finish one book I barely take a breath, never mind a deep one, before downloading the next one and starting again.  This is getting pricey, at eleven and some dollars a pop.  So I’ve exercised incredible self-discipline today by doing a lot of other stuff that didn’t get done yesterday and leaving my kindle untouched and plugged in to give it a much deserved rest and some time to rejuvenate.

I’m here to tell you reading is a LOT more satisfying and fun than doing laundry.  But you probably already knew that.

Living alone means never having to say you’re sorry for the total mess you’ve made of your house.  Good thing no one has comes to visit me unexpectedly.  If that happens and I don’t answer the bell it might mean I’m not at home,  but it’s much more likely I’m pretending to be out rather than taking the risk of answering the door and then dying of embarrassment due to the state of myself and my surroundings.

Things are all straightened around today, neat and organized. I’ve showered and put on make up and fixed my hair.  I can delude myself again for a while that I’m not a total slob, just a partial part-time one.  I have a couple of errands to run which will involve actually leaving the house.  And then (finally!)  I can get back to my books.   I can indulge myself in the incredible luxury of having the time to sit and read my heart out.  I’ve been completely spoiled this summer when it comes to that, and I’m enjoying every sweet reading minute of it.

My End of Day Routine

What’s the first thing you do when you get off work?

If it’s at all possible, I go straight home. So I can hurry up and relax.

If I’ve got stuff to pick up or things to run around doing, I get them done as fast as possible so I can get home and kick off my shoes and sit down and do absolutely dick-all for as long as I can get away with it.

Does that qualify as a routine? It’s a hard one to stick with since there’s always some kind of work that needs to be done after I’m finished with my day job. I wish the pay was as good at home. I throw some laundry in the machine, mess around in the kitchen getting something to eat, check Facebook and my e-mail and do my on-line banking and pay bills and see if Plinky has anything interesting to add inspiration to my day. Wow. Sounds like I’m totally on top of things.

The truth is I’m often too tired to do anything except read for a while and fall asleep.

Powered by Plinky