Losing it All – My Mind AND Belongings

I think my mind has slipped down into the mysterious crack of lost items. It seems I am losing my mind AND my belongings to this insufferable crack. You know the crack I’m talking about; missing socks that never come out of the dryer after they have gone in. Okay, so that one isn’t so mysterious. There must be some logical explanation for that since it happens to everyone. I just get so tired of spending half my waking hours looking for things! I’m finding out that it’s not so much that these items are actually lost. I just can’t remember what in hell I did with them.

Prime example: I went to the doggie beach this past weekend and upon returning home I couldn’t find my MP3 player, so figured it was buried deep in the sand somewhere on Huntington Beach. Not so. After searching for days, I opened my eyeglass case to find the player tucked away nice and safe-like! Cheese Louise! What good is keeping things in a safe place when you can’t remember where the safe place is?

I’m thinking one solution would be to stop walking around the house like a zombie with things in my hand. They wind up getting dropped in the most unlikely of places. Take the case of the missing Kleenex box, lost around the same time as the MP3 player. Even my husband got into the act on this one. I asked him if he had seen it, and he said no and that he thought it was weird too because he remembered me asking him which box we should keep in the living room. (Boxes have different designs on them, so I wanted to use the one that fit my color scheme.) Turns out it was hidden behind the toilet tank. Not so unlikely a place for a box of Kleenex, but still, not where I usually put them. Fortunately, this mystery was solved in about 10 minutes, so I still have most of the hair on my head.

Do I have to accept the fact that I’m just getting old and I have developed CRS like everyone else my age? I don’t care what anyone says; I’m pretty sure I coined this acronym, but I can’t remember. Besides, I’ve been suffering from CRS since my early 20s. So I can pretty much say with certainty that it is not old age! Maybe I should just cop to the old age thing, because the alternatives are not very attractive. Something must be seriously wrong with my brain!

Here’s the kicker. It used to be that I could depend on my husband to be my keeper. I guess I unconsciously picked a man 12 hears my junior just for this purpose, but guess what? He’s catching up to me in a big damn hurry! How he’s getting deaf, along with me, and he can’t remember a damn thing anymore either. A lot of good he is! Now we will just have two idiots running around the house looking for things. Can you just picture it? Hubby bellowing ‘what’ all the time, cause he doesn’t have hearing aids yet; both of us bumbling along looking for our eye glasses and various other old age necessities. Thank you God; you’re funny too!

Oh well, I guess we could hire a personal assistant and pretend he/she does really important things for us. We don’t have to tell anyone that his/her job is really finding our eyeglasses which sometimes can be found perched atop our balding heads!

 

Brodie & His Friends

My parents really don’t get me, not one bit. They don’t understand what a day in the life of Brodie is really like. It’s like we speak a different language. I suppose it’s not an unusual fifteen year-old adolescent complaint. Take this morning for an example. Well, actually any morning for that matter.  They all start off the same. I’m not the morning type. If sleeping were a competitive sport, I would be a challenge to be reckoned with.

I can hear my Mom now yelling at me from the kitchen. Brodie, get out from under those covers. Don’t make me come in there! I have to get up every morning and help my Dad take out the trash. Since I have to be outside anyway, I take this opportunity to scout around and make sure the home front is secure. I don’t know why I am so anal about this; I must have been a security guard in my last life. I always make sure our car is still in the driveway and that the stereo remains intact. Although not sure I’d miss it that much since my parents always get the choice of music, which is not anything I can remotely relate to. I do love that car though and my parents almost always let me have the best seat. It’s the one up I have on Krystal and Tommy. They, on the other hand get to lie around in bed while I’m out taking care of business.  Seems all they ever care about is who can get to the breakfast table first!

Tommy and Krystal are my seventeen year-old twin brother and sister. They seem to think because they arrived on the scene first that they are especially privileged. It would appear so too, since I’m the one who has trash and security duties!  Krystal is all right some of the time and mostly ignores me. However, I get the feeling Tommy is always waiting to throw a punch at me or put his foot out to trip me when I walk by. I’m convinced that Mr. and Miss High & Mighty just tolerate me for Mom and Dad’s sake, and wish I were never born! Well, born I was, and it’s not my fault my parents gave me such a geeky name to begin with. Broderick? Who the heck pins a name like that on a kid these days? Brodie is okay I guess, though it does sound like a dog’s name. No wonder the twins treat me like one! But it is a darn sight better than Broderick.

After breakfast, I like to hang out with my Dad when he isn’t working, maybe play a little ball. Dad doesn’t throw so well so I spend a lot of time chasing his lousy pitches. Of course my catcher’s mitt isn’t the greatest either. Today was no different, and I quickly bored of the game. If nothing else, we got a little exercise. It’s barely ten in the morning, and I’m already looking forward to my nap. Dad is probably the only one who can compete with me in the sleeping department. This is a stroke of good luck for me, and he allows me to get away with a lot of napping too. Mom hates all the daytime sleeping and discourages it every chance she gets. But, I have a few slick hiding places so I can sleep in peace most of the time.

After sneaking in my mid-morning nap, I begin to feel really antsy. Time to get out of the house; napping just energizes me.  Maybe my friend Joxer is up and about. He seems to be just lazing around this summer too. Joxer and I are a bit different but we are best buds! He’s a little older than me, and opposite in build. He’s tall and sturdy looking, while I’m quite a bit shorter. Some say that we look like Mutt and Jeff palling around together. We do have our funny names in common; seems Joxer is a nickname taken from some old time super hero his Dad likes. Joxer and his Dad live alone together. Though his Dad is in a wheelchair, he gets around pretty well all on his own. Even so, Joxer likes to keep an eye on him. I bet his Dad likes the idea of a super hero watching his back.

I banged on Joxer’s door and his Dad let him out for a while. We wandered the neighborhood seeing what kind of trouble we could stir up. Then we went across the street from Joxer’s and hooked up with another friend we call Slinky because he’s so darn skinny. Joxer and I are always trying to engage him in our activities; like eating for one, hoping to fatten him up so as not to make us look bad. Our parents all seem to be on this kick of watching our weight! Actually, Slinky wasn’t so slinky not so long ago! But that was before his parents put him on a diet. Now, he thinks he’s all that since he has trimmed down. But, we still dig him; the old Slinky is still in there somewhere!

We didn’t really have a game plan and was just roaming the neighborhood checking out the driveways for any cool new cars. Soon enough trouble found us. Along comes the knucklehead threesome which we like to call them. The three brothers are not so much trouble really. We just think they are stuck up. They always seem to be parading around with their mother showing off their athletic ability. Said skills make us look like the do-nothings that we are most of the time. We should probably be kinder. They don’t have a Dad, and maybe their Mom just wants to keep them tough by involving them in sports. They are kind of arrogant though, and Slinky doesn’t care for them much, so he slunk on home when they showed up at our favorite nearby park. He’s not the most social guy in the world and was glad to have an excuse to leave away. We always tease him about having a social anxiety disorder but hes so anti-social he doesn’t seem to care!

I was feeling another nap coming on, so I finally dismissed myself as well and went on my way home. I crept into the house hoping not to run into Mom who always wants to talk to me and see what I’ve been doing, or check out my hair to see if I need a haircut. I let her fuss with me for a few minutes, and then high-tailed it to my den for another nap before supper.

I woke up from my nap just in time for supper. Mom’s cooking is okay but what I really look forward to is dessert. We don’t always have one every night because of the health kick Mom is always preaching. And, if it were up to my Dad, we’d eat nothing BUT dessert! Oh Yeah! It’s on tonight, a special treat, vanilla ice cream, my favorite!

Well, that’s how my day went, and now that I think about it, maybe I shouldn’t be complaining so much; yap, yap, yap. I mean heck, I have the life of a well cared for dog! I have a dog’s life for crying out loud. Oh, that’s right, I am one!

My real name is Auggie and I’m the best cutest weenie dog on the block! My brother and sister are really cats from the same litter. And my parents really do take VERY good care of me. And, oh yeah, my parents are human. What a menagerie!

Fantasy Sports is a Game Changer

I’m not much of a sports fan but must admit Fantasy Sports has some appeal. Not that I participate, and not from want of trying from my husband to get me involved.  As the above picture notes, this is how you will frequently find my husband; stalking the TV and screaming at it.

 

For those of you who don’t know, Fantasy Sports involves the guys/gals picking teams of their own, based on the actual real sports players. They give their team some unique crazy name and then compete against each other. Then, they all rush to the draft to see if they can snag up the best players to be on their team. How each individual player performs determines their team’s standings in the league. Points are scored up for each individual play, and by season end, whoever has the most points wins. Some leagues play for money and others just for fun.

 

I started off by saying that Fantasy sports has some appeal, and I will get to that later. Here’s the downside. All the sports widows and widowers are left hanging even more! Because now, not only do the men (and some women) spend hours in front of the tube watching the games, they now also spend even more hours in front of the computer. Either they are talking smack about the other team’s players, or they are messing around making changes to their teams. I get a kick out of how seriously the whole thing is taken too; at least by my husband.

 

Heaven forbid should I call uniforms outfits! Sometimes I will comment on how I like one team’s outfit better than another, and it really annoys him. Of course I know better now, but his annoyance makes for my amusement, so I’ll still call them outfits just to get a rise out of him. He also doesn’t like it when I make fun of the referees when they make all those crazy hand signals and announce the penalties so seriously. Many times I will burst out laughing during a game when I happen to hear one of these penalty calls. Neither is he amused by my outbursts of laughter.

 

Now let’s talk about the positive part. It used to be that while watching the game, my husband would yell and scream expletives at the TV. Poor doggies if they happen to be napping on the bed alongside of him. No doubt he startles the life out of them! Instead, he is much quieter and doesn’t yell nearly so much. The dogs and I are both appreciative.

 

Fantasy Sports has changed the way the game is viewed at least to a certain extent. Instead of rooting for your team to win, more concern is shown for individual performance. In some cases this means, who cares who wins, so long as your Fantasy team is winning. Instead of just viewing the sport, now there is also viewer competition involved, which changes the whole nature of the game. This is another example of how the internet has so drastically changed our lives.

 

I suppose I must take the good with the bad. Besides, I don’t particularly consider myself a sports widow. The time my husband spends on sports is less time he spends yakking in my ear on endless political issues. I can then plop myself in front of my own boob tube and stream Netflix without his interference. That reminds me. I should come up with a new term for boob tube. It’s not like there are any actual tubes involved anymore. To change the subject even further, I am sick to death of LOL too. I’m working on that one.

 

 

Customer Service is Dying Out

In a day and age of super technology and ever expanding giant corporations, you’d think that providing good customer service would improve. Wrong! Bigger is not always better. In fact, in this author’s humble opinion, quite the opposite. The list of examples is endless.

 

Here is a selection of just one week’s most fr
ustrating, exasperating, stomach constricting, Excedrin headache number 4,444,444-type events.

 

Let’s start with my all time favorite utility company to hate; the Phone Company. I needed to make a call to my cable company (probably my second most favorite utility company to hate, who will be berated shortly). Since I was at work and had no access to the correct phone directory, I called information, the all-knowing keeper of phone numbers. Not! I asked for the number of the Cable Company in the city in which I lived, and the operator insisted that the only number was for a city about 70 miles away from my residence. I used my local directory to look up the number regularly. What was his problem? I begged to differ with him and proceeded to tell him that there were numbers not only for my city, but two surrounding cities as well. In fact, I practically know the number of the Cable Company by heart, since I spend a significant amount of time making complaints to them. I gave up arguing with the operator and called the number he gave me in order to obtain the number I needed for my local cable company. Jeez!! I would really have been annoyed if I had to pay for the long distance call instead of my kindly employer.

 

Next we have the almighty cable provider, whose service without; most of us would have no television at all. I, personally, cannot get any television reception without a cable hookup. What’s up with that anyway? Since when do you need cable connection to receive local TV stations? That concept rings of monopoly, big time! Nothing makes me crazier than coming home from work to plop down on the couch to watch my favorite soap, only to find my VCR has recorded nothing but gray fuzzy static stuff! I consider myself a fairly intelligent woman, yet I reserve the right to engage in at least one stupid activity. For me that is the soap I have been watching for the past 30 years.

 

In light of that insight into my personality, you can imagine the mood I am in when I have to make yet another call to the Cable Company. Of course they can’t tell me how long it will be before they are through working on the lines, nor whether or not the money for the new stations they are working on providing will come out of my pocket. And, if I want credit, I have to call every day I am without service in order to get credit on my bill. The kicker is, you cannot even threaten to cancel your service and go elsewhere because there is no elsewhere to go. Cable companies provide service for particular areas and if you happen to live in the area of the crappiest cable provider, such is your fate. Oh joy, and for all this fantastic service I pay $51.24 a month!

 

Now, here is the most annoying incident. Well, the most annoying incident that week anyway. I am sure I will have many more occasions where my phone seems to hang off my ear, endlessly making complaint calls to utility companies, credit card companies, and various other service providers.

 

I speak now of the brown truck brigade, UPS. The only good thing about UPS is the good-looking drivers. They are in the same league with construction workers and firemen. You rarely encounter an ugly one. However, along with the rest of the companies I noted, service is not exactly their forte either! I seldom receive UPS packages. You would think the on the few occasions when I have, they could get the delivery right. This is not the case. It all began on a Wednesday and after five phone calls, the package they attempted to deliver the previous Friday still had not been delivered. I won’t even bother to bore you with the details of the complaint phone conversations. Suffice it to say; at least ten idiots were most likely involved with this fiasco!

 

As you can tell, these incidents happened back in the VCR days. The technology has improved even more, but the customer service has not. Now if you make a phone call to complain about something, you can’t even complain to a live person. And, if by some miracle you do get a live operator, you have a 60-40 percent chance that you won’t be able to understand a word they say! Don’t get me wrong, I love the new technology, so much so that as an early adopter, I pay a high price for all the gadgets because I can’t wait to get them.

 

So readers, if you expected solutions, humph! Get a clue. This was just a bitch session. I will attempt to solve world problems next week. Hah! If only someone would let me, I’d be all over it!

My Mind Took on a Mind of Its Own

absent minded

Shall we continue with the on-going saga of the loss of my mind? Those of you who know me, are well aware of the direction my mind has taken; that would be south!  Absent mindedness will be the death of me, a slow and agonizing death.  The contemplation of it all is scary, to say the least.

 

This morning as I walked down the hall to get my cup of brew at work, I greeted a co-worker with? How ya doin’? Grace? The woman’s name is Rose, also a lovely name. No, her middle name is not Grace. I asked her if I had ever called her by that name before; she answered no, but that she could understand because there is another woman in such and such department called Grace. Well, I don?t know that woman either, nor do I know any woman by the name of Grace.

 

I do dearly love the name Grace. It makes for a great middle name. My daughter’s name is Dawn Marie; Dawn Marie Grace would be a lovely name. The other daughter is Rachel Michele. Rachel Michele Grace. No, that doesn’t work. Damn, I’m too old to have any more children to name Grace. Hell’s bells, even my daughters are getting too old to have any more children to name Grace. That would leave the grandchildren. I wonder if I could convince one of them to name of my great-grandchildren Grace.

 

Yeah, good luck with that Jeanette. If the grandchildren are as stubborn as the children, I doubt I could persuade them to pick the name of my choosing for their child. I tried very hard to convince both of my daughters to name their daughters Katie, for my mother. Neither would oblige. Why didn’t you name of your daughters Katie, was their response. I couldn’t answer the question; go figure.

 

So I named my cat Katie, who is now residing with my mom in the hereafter. Katie Grace, beautiful! So then, if I cannot convince my grandchildren to name their child Grace, it’s also a great cat name. I lost both my current cats this year, so if, and that’s a big IF, we decide to get a cat, we shall grace her with the name Grace.

 

From the dark recesses of my mind, for whatever reason, out spewed Grace this morning. The mind is an amazing organ, is it not? I wonder at the significance of Grace. Of course, there is a good chance there is no significance whatsoever except for the continued southerly direction of my mind.

Thanksgiving at our House

 

 

 

 

 

This was last year’s Thanksgiving Day at our House. Serious consideration is being given to having Polly’s Pies cater our Thanksgiving Day dinner this year!

 

It’s Friday after Thanksgiving as I sit in my pajamas recuperating from the holiday festivities. I wonder if anyone else feels the way I do after the holidays. It’s like it’s supposed to be all this happy, happy, food, family and discussing the upcoming Christmas holiday. This is yet another holiday which will only exhaust me more than anything else. I’ve always preferred to be the party guest rather than the party giver; selfish of me I guess. One should return the favor and host from time to time, particularly if you are the matriarch of the family. Though I’ve never regretted being a female, I wouldn’t mind switching genders for the holidays. No one expects nearly as much from the male of the species. Sure, they will help out provided you instruct them every step of the way, but they care little about the details that drive the women crazy; this woman anyway.

 

I thought it would be near to perfect this year since my condo has been remodeled and redecorated and I spent a small fortune on some extras to make everyone feel special and comfortable. But none of that made any difference; it seems my guests barely noticed the difference. Certainly none of it eliminated the hectic maneuvers necessary to successfully get a large meal on the table with all menu items warm and ready to go at the same time. Yes, the daughters try to help, but did I mention my kitchen is about the size of a large bathroom? Try scurrying around in the kitchen with three women in a normal sized kitchen, and you have issues. Doing it in a small kitchen is a whole other three-ringed circus.

 

Not to mention, I find out after all these years that my gravy is less than marvelous. This says my oldest daughter who proceeds to tell me about a Rachel Rae television episode all about the secrets to gravy making. Really daughter? Granted, it IS always a crap-shoot when it comes to the results of the gravy preparation. However, those results are always good, better and great! But this year it’s a little of this, a little of that, more of this, more of that. Oh wait, back it up. Scratch the whole thing, dump it down the sink and start over again. Seems my whisk is falling apart in the gravy! All this is what two strong-willed women come up with? Actually, number one daughter gave up, crept out of the kitchen, and Mom tossed a jar of ready made gravy into the turkey drippings. And, guess what the gravy turned out pretty darn good, just like it does every year, thank you very much!

 

Okay, can we top the gravy making fiasco? Oh I think so; not to disappoint. Could be that the holidays are exhausting even for the guests, as mine seem to start getting packed up and ready to leave in less than an hour after the last mouthful of turkey and pie is consumed. Not that I complained. After being on my feet from six in the morning to five in the evening, they were killing me and I was ready to get them up off my new non-giving tile floor. While we are all distracted with guests leaving, my darling dachshund decides to put his mad-cap ending to the day by helping himself to the pies atop the kitchen table. After saying good-bye to half of my guests, I turned around to find him with all fours on top of the table licking away at the pies! You might be interested to know, the chocolate cream was his favorite.

 

Friday morning finds Grandma (yours truly) having apple pie and coffee for breakfast. The night before I decided to salvage what was the left of the pies by sponging them off with a paper towel and shoving them back into the fridge, pretending that doggie tongue never entered the picture.

 

I can hardly wait for Christmas. One can only imagine the joy that awaits me.  Watch for Thanksgiving – Next Saga