Thursday, February 22, 2007

The BEST day

Oh, if only you people could see me now, you'd see a tragically white girl doing something that could easily be mistaken for a seizure.

It's actually just me.. doing a happy dance.

Earlier today, I finished three of four stages of intensive dental work.. it's been ongoing for almost 14 months, but I'm almost done. The very last stage is scheduled for March 6th - when I can promptly go back to a normal person who sees a dentist just twice a year. I can't wait to find out what that feels like.

Can I get a hell yeah?

Also, I got my own wireless-internet-hook-up-thing, and have as of right now stopped stealing wireless signal from my neighbors. AND it didn't cost me the $85 they quoted me 'cause the handy-wireless-internet guy discovered I had a connection that I didn't know about.

Can I get another hell yeah?

AND for the icing, (you know, the very best part) - I signed on the dotted line of a long piece of yellow paper, in triplicate no less, tonight to get MY SUNROOM!!! (This is where the happy dance really gets scary). I've had visions of this room for the last two years, overlooking my back yard, me working, writing, reading, napping, and if I actually learn, maybe knitting in there. I scheduled the estimate thinking they would come out and quote me something so outlandish it would be impossible for me to afford effectively putting an end to my sunroom-longing. But no, apparently Ra (he was the sun god, right?) has smiled upon me, and the Nice-Sunroom-estimate-man tells me I have the easiest house/deck combo to transform into the sunroom of my dreams, complete with sliding glass door onto my deck and dog door for my four legged friends. Affordable, you betcha.

For the sprinkles on the icing, it'll be done by the first week in April, second at worst. At any rate, weeks before I bring home my new puppy.

I haven't had a day this good in a very long time. I'm going to enjoy it, perhaps even revel in it.
The word on the work-street is the next several months could be ugly..the words "overtime" and "weekend-work" have been used with abandon. The blow of that happening during the lovely North Carolina spring is considerably softened by the fact that I could do all that "weekend-overtime-work" in my brand new sunroom with my dogs in the sunny spot at my feet.

Sangria slushies in the sunroom - mid April - Who's in?

Monday, February 19, 2007

Fly away home...

I have bugs.
Lady bugs.
Or, more properly, I have Asian lady beetles. A little too formal for my taste, but that’s what Kentucky State Entomology Department says.

I moved into this house in April 2005. It was spring, and I remember seeing them now and then. As bugs go, they don’t come remotely anywhere near my ‘ew, gross a bug’ list. That spring I remember thinking I was seeing more than I’d seen in the previous 5 years, but again they were just lady bugs.

In the last month, I’ve seen one a week.
Today, while I was drying my hair there were three on my bathroom window, three.
I was instantly reminded of that Amityville horror scene with the flies on the window.
This made my ‘just ladybugs’ attitude very difficult to maintain, and I found myself unable to look away from them. The biggest one took flight at one point, up to the ceiling in the middle of the bathroom, completely freaking me out, just for a minute.

I’m big enough to admit I shrieked like a little girl.

I wondered if North Carolina was just some weird haven for lady bugs. Was it the pine trees? Was it something in my house? Perhaps my creepy crawl space has something to do with it? I’m going to find something to blame that crawl space for, sooner or later. And, why the hell were they all over my house in FEBRUARY? I don’t know diddly about lady bugs, but um, shouldn’t they be, uh, hibernating, or in a cocoon or doing some other cold weather-bug-behavior?

I got online tonight and did what all adults do when confronted with something they don’t know diddly about. I googled “lady bugs.”

I learned that they are avid aphid eaters. Mmmmm. Aphids. Couldn’t you just go for some now?

Yeah, I googled Aphids too, shut up.

I also learned that they are supposed to be hibernating and that my problem is not uncommon. Apparently our mixed up seasons have mixed up the little buggers, no pun intended. Lady bugs come inside buildings during winter and do just what I saw them doing in my bathroom. In the spring, they gravitate toward the southwest window openings and hang out trying to find their way outside. Guess what direction my bathroom window faces? The only real problem they can cause is that they can “reflex bleed” a toxin from their legs – which is good for use against ladybug predators but can stain furniture or counter tops. So that yellow oily stain on my bathroom counter is reflex blood? Ew. Did I say these bugs weren’t on my list of gross bugs? I think Wikipedia is changing my mind.

At any rate, it’s unlikely I have a problem worth doing much about – the pictures I saw of serious infestations were well beyond my measly three bathroom ladybugs.

However, I have been muttering that “ladybug, ladybug fly away home” thing all day.

It's not working. They're still in there.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

6 Weird things

(For the owner/operator of the COOLEST trivia quiz on the internet)….

Mmmkay. Since I just did a post about my OCD - I’ll skip those because oh yes, my friends, there is MORE.

1. I was diagnosed as dyslexic in grade school. As an adult that types far more than she writes, at least twice a day, I’ll type a long word entirely backwards, like, hemangiosarcoma… or metastasis..and I don’t catch it until spell check does. I don’t even realize I’m doing it.

2. I am ambidextrous. When I’m nervous, I forget what hand I normally do things with. I’ll just get extraordinarily uncomfortable, and then realize it’s because I’m writing with my left hand.

3. When I was in first grade I had a few seizures. One day I fell asleep in class. My teacher let me sleep and sent the rest of the class out to recess leaving me alone in the classroom. Apparently, I had a seizure, came out of it, and walked home. I got home and watched as my dad killed my pet rabbit. To this day, no-one in my family knows that I know.

4. I once stole a stepladder from an employer on my last day. I was mad at them and it was the only thing I could think of to do on my way out. I still have it.

5. When I’m left alone in doctor’s offices I can’t resist going through the drawers of everything in the room. Sometimes, I take completely useless things, like pens or cotton balls.

6. When I was little and people would ask what I wanted to be when I grew up I always shouted “A garbage-man!”

And that’s all I’m giving you people tonight. I hope Valentine's Day, however you chose to celebrate it, was a smash hit.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

For Mandaroo

This was in my mail this morning, said "Dolly" was for sale, because she'd already eaten all the rapists, murderers and thieves in the neighborhood.
Heh. I bet.
There you go 'Roo, there's your snow-day funny.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Simple Simon and some other stuff.

The Sunday before last I ran 3 of 5 scheduled miles; at mile one my leg hurt a little; at mile two I could feel myself grimacing every time my left foot hit the pavement; and at mile 3 I was looking for a puppy to kick.
I quit at 3. The pain was so bad that when I was trying to "walk it off" I wasn't sure the leg would support me, yeah, that kind of bad.
I went home frustrated. I called my Ironman friend, told him what was going on. After being properly chastised for how long I'd been ignoring it (like 3 weeks) he gave me this plan.

(1) No running til the pain goes away.
(2) Ice and ibuprofen twice day.
(3) When the pain goes away, cross train only - no stair steppers.

Today was my first run back. Sure, it was super short, just under 3 miles; but I had no pain - AT ALL. I also had the lovely Tiff nearby making the stair stepper her bitch. She makes every workout better - the cute boy wandering around the gym lifting weights didn't hurt either.

All in all, a better day than the last 9 - yeah, because I ran and it didn't hurt me. Turns out I am just simple.

In unrelated-to-anything-really-news, I finally threw away the onion - it's been riding around in my cup holder since I wrote the OCD post. The best part of that? I've had a few people in my car since then, and not one of them has asked why I was driving around with an onion in my cup holder. So, either (a) it's not that weird, or (b) the people I've had in my car know that I'm nuts, or, (c) best option of all, they are just as off as I am and find it completely unremarkable to drive around with an onion in your cup holder.

More unrelated news... I'm having Valentine's day dinner with a friend I haven't seen in 20 years. She was really my brother's friend, but we found each other through the magical Internet (Thank you again, Mr. Gore) and so.. off to Moonlight Pizza we shall go and commence to throw things at all the happy couples. (You've been warned).

And that is that for Monday night at Casa Cravey home of the happy runner-chick.


Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Me, Myself and OCD

Driving home tonight I had to hit the brakes sharply to avoid hitting a cat on highway 55. The daredevil cat made across all 4 lanes of traffic and no Detroit steel was harmed in the saving of the feline. However, during the short-stop something rolled out from under my seat and smacked me in the foot. When I pulled into the grocery store parking lot a few miles farther down the road I took a look beneath the brake pedal to see what it was.

Any guesses?
A nice big red spanish onion.

Apparently I bought Mr. onion whenever I last shopped, loaded him and the rest of his grocery gang into the back seat of my car and he rolled out, and I somehow, never missed him. I guess I should just be glad it happened, it would have been just awful if it had started to rot under my seat..bleh.

So, I started thinking about the things in my life that I'll let go, and the things that have to be a certain way. For example, and, no, I really can't believe I'm saying this out loud, but every week night I have to set up my coffee pot for the next day morning and not just the pot, coffee, and filter part but the cup, the spoon, a paper towel and the correct number of splenda packets must be laid out on the counter. If whatever I'm cooking for dinner can be left, the dog and I go out and get the mail together, and we play fetch in the front yard exactly 4 times; 2 on the way down to the street; 2 on the way back. I can't leave dirty dishes in the kitchen sink all night. I've tried and it always ends up with me laying in bed thinking about my dirty dishes. I have to turn on the dishwasher just before I go to bed. When I turn on the dishwasher, the light over the stove must go on. This is a light bulb I have extras of at all times. In the morning, I'll have to empty the dishwasher while the coffee is brewing and yes, as a matter of fact, it is very upsetting if the coffee finishes before me.

Somehow though, making sure my perishable, paid for groceries make it from the car into my home, eh, not so important. And people, I'm a list maker, I don't walk into a grocery store, ever, and wing it. I make lists, I cross things off as I put them in my basket. Why wouldn't I notice a missing onion? An onion crossed off my list, no doubt.

I'd love to say this is the only time that something like this has happened, but I can't. A few months ago, I drove to a work-luncheon thing and my boss kindly pointed out a full yogurt wedged firmly under the passenger seat. Just a few weeks ago, I had lunch with bloggers, Tiff, Kenju, and Renn, and I somehow left half of a very good turkey wrap thingie, that's right, under my car seat. This evening, upon further investigation, I also found roughly 25 multivitamins completely adhered to the carpet under the passenger seat (this one is a real mystery as I have no idea how they got there); one flip flop and in the passenger seat pocket, I found CD's I either didn't know I owned or that I don't own, (but to whom they should be returned I have no earthly idea); six ballpoint pens, four sharpies, and a tube of toothpaste. I have zero recollection of actually putting these items here, nor at any time during the unloading did I think "I'm so glad I put that there, I'm such a very smart girl." No, most of the time I thought "what the hell? where did this come from?"

I also count my steps, pretty much everywhere I go, I can tell you exactly how many steps it is from my bedroom to my garage door, or my front door to my back door, or my garage door to my mailbox, or from my office to the bathrooms. My brain has somehow determined this crap to be important information, but also it doesn't trust itself, because we have to do it every time.

I'm feeling a little nuts tonight. I'm also feeling like maybe I understand why some of those relationships didn't work out so well. It wasn't that I didn't listen to what they were saying to me, I just couldn't hear them over all the incessant counting.

Shut up. You people are weird too. I know it.

Monday, February 5, 2007

I can beat that..

I didn’t do anything I needed to do today. No laundry, no housework, and I sure as hell didn’t vacuum. I did go buy new running shoes, ORANGE ones! Yay! I also spent a couple hours in one of those huge chain bookstores. The bookstore near my house in Virginia was a lot like a library; very quiet, lots of couches hidden among the stacks, and librarian-ish looking women behind the counter. Those women knew books; they could find me anything based on very little information. I spent a lot of money and time in there.

The one here is a big one chain store, and has a Starbucks right in the middle – it’s crowded and loud in there on a regular basis. It’s more like a nightclub in there minus the alcoholic beverages. Instead of drunken 20-somethings, you have overly caffeinated 20 somethings, which, in my opinion, is way worse. The baristas push dessert like waitresses in southern diners push sweet tea. Today, from order placement to order pick-up I was asked 3 times if I didn’t want a cookie or a scone or something, honey? The nice part is they let you pay for your book purchases right along with your tea. Nice.

I think about what it takes to take on the task of writing a book often, and wonder what it would be like go into a book store and see your book there.

Today, while perusing the staff recommendations, top sellers, and discount tables, I became convinced the only thing between me (or anyone) writing a book is the actual commitment to *do* it. There was actually a book in there called “Stuff on My Cat” and it was just that, pictures of some poor kitty with whip cream and cherries, guacamole, and every other imaginable horror on him. Just on him. No real text, no story, just some poor warped woman who spent an afternoon dressing her cat up like a stinkin’ appetizer.

Had I known, this kind of shit would sell; my book would be a chronicle of my former life as an anesthesia nurse in a veterinary referral hospital and would be called. “Stuff I took out of your pet.”

Right now, stop reading

Think of something you own that you’re sure your pet would never eat (exclude the absurdly obvious things like your refrigerator) or think of something that would be embarrassing, an illegal substance or perhaps something exposing a sexual proclivity. Oh yeah, those things.

Now, know that I’ve seen them all.

Granny panties, lacy, racy thongs, socks, condoms, tampons, *ahem* toys, little army men (10 in one dog), spiderman action figure (only missing 1 hand), blind pulls, mulch (a pound), sewing needles (still threaded), bottle caps, gravel, a hundred nails, the stuffing to two couch cushions (yes all of it); the contents of a 5 gallon salsa jug; 2 pounds of starburst candy; remote controls, cell phones, Christmas ornaments, Christmas light bulbs, insulation, drywall, tire treading; yeah, all that.

Or, the tearful lady who brought her 9 month old chocolate lab in shaking, unbalanced, panting, and trying to eat the carpet. Key to this story is that this was a referral hospital, so she was sent to us from a GP who couldn’t figure out what was wrong with the puppy. Specifically sent to my department, neurosurgery. So, Dr. Cowboy and I go in the room and examine the dog – which is a little like wresting a hungry alligator. The dog is hitting on all the neurology cylinders, his reflexes are wonky, his eyes are moving involuntarily dependent on position, his gait is off, everything is just wrong. Dr. Cowboy and I leave the room to call about scheduling an MRI for the dog, while the owner takes a call from her roommate.

Dr. Cowboy and I go back in the room to find the dog so soundly asleep I couldn’t rouse him. Alarmed, we took him back to the critical care unit. I go back to explain to the owner what’s going and she closes the door and explains to me that her roommate had called to tell her that his weed is lost. Apparently this was a large amount. Guess who found it?

I worked in that field for 15 years. I’m just betting I could beat “stuff on my cat” up the best seller list.

Thursday, February 1, 2007

Nothin' doin'

I spent most of today at the dentist. Not fun and still, at this hour, kinda painful.

Two things happened worth sharing - which is a lot considering I left the dentist and worked in my kitchen this evening with no-one but the dog to keep me company. When the numbness dissipated I went to the grocery store because Tif's post made me hungry. I wanted spinach and feta cheese quesadillas (shut up they're awesome).
While checking out, the pock-marked teenager bagging my supplies said (and I quote)
"This sounds weird to say, but you smell like my mom"
Speechless I was.. and I had to actually tell myself to close my mouth.
A little freaked out by the look on my face, pock-marked teenager back-pedaled,
"It's a good smell, I swear"
Once composed, I said "If you plan on having sex at sometime in your life, never say those words to another female"
His turn to be surprised, I think. Was I too hard on him?
Either way, pretty sure Sarah Jessica Parker's Lovely is going in the trashcan.

Over the weekend I saw Little Miss Sunshine (Thanks Kim) and it made me think of my friend Kate and I shot her an email. Her response came today. It was memories of her sister, Laura. Apparently Laura had a soft spot for the horrors of life (like Judge Judy and child beauty pageants) - one year Laura made Christmas angel ornaments out of TAMPONS. Soaked the bottom half in food coloring so they would expand like little angel skirts and then made heads and wings. Kate said the red ones were hard to look at. Laura also made mini marshmallow crucifixes for place holders for Easter dinner the first time her fiance's parents came to dinner.

All evening I've been imagining little tampon angels hanging from christmas tree branches.

This might be worthy of buying a tree next year.