Friday, May 31, 2013

Drip, Drip, Hurray!

It's absolutely sweltering in our little slice of heaven today.

Sweltering, as in the-backs-of-my-hands-started-to-sweat-while-I-popped-out-of-the-office-for-lunch.

It's so hot that I'm relatively certain my brains are melting.

Summer does that, you know.

In my mind, Summer is a woman. She's got strawberry blonde hair, somewhat frizzy but in the best possible way. The sort of hair that seems to have an attitude all of its own, but without being so rambunctious as to scare the neighbors by looking as though a small rodent has taken up residence therein.

Summer has friendly green eyes. Not blue like the ocean as is so typically assumed, but green like the trees and the grass that reach up to embrace the warm sunlight. The sort of vibrant green that resonates with the human spirit in the mutual adoration of nature.

Summer's clothes are thin and wafty, moving gently around her like the breeze across an open field. They're brightly colored without being gaudy, exuding the vibrance of the season.

Summer isn't a slight little slip of a woman. She's Amazonian in height and in character, taking a strong hold when she's ready and not a moment before. She's solidly muscular, commanding the attention of anyone upon whom she turns her gaze.

As such, I've realized this is why summer seems so much more oppressive of women.

She's beautiful. It echoes through her very core - the essence of Summer is beauty, and that essence is undiluted and pure.

Which, of course, makes her a fickle bitch.

"Oh, puny mortals..." she seems to taunt on the most humid of days. It's as though she tests us with the strangling hold of moisture - like the owner of a willful pup, she spritzes liberally with her water sprayer to keep our spirits from becoming too free.

Other days, she's seemingly so taken with emotion that her tears pour openly over the earth. As though the pressure of that ever-present beauty has become too heavy a burden to bear, and she simply cannot carry that weight further. And so she veils herself in a hay shroud, willing the rain to come.

On some of those days, her anger breaks free and pierces through the sky. The crashing of thunder and crackling of lightning lay testament to her ferocity. Her beauty comes with a temperamental price.

But most days, her beauty simply is. She radiates warmth and positive energy over the earth after she's certain that Spring has shaken the last tendrils of Winter from the land.

Once she decides to come, she leaves no question as to her presence and her strength.

That's Summer, to me.

Please Note: It was difficult for me - especially so today - to be serious and poetical. As I was putting these thoughts together, it seemed as though every single facet of my environment were screaming "BE FUNNY! Look! Here's something funny you can think about!!"

For instance: When I picked up a call, and the caller sneezed in my ear.

Strength of character alone willed me to finish the post without scrapping it and going for the joke.

But eventually I had to cave... because even the strongest willed woman is going to do that from time to time.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Dry Heaves

I have a whole lot of brain bile going on right now, ReaderFriends.

I have to preface this post with this statement:

I try hard - damn hard - to be a pleasant person.

I try to smile.

I try to make jokes.

I try to be outwardly gracious to individuals in my sphere of influence.

But sometimes there are people to whom one simply cannot be pleasant.

I am forced into circumstances with a small handful of those individuals.

Now, most of them really don't care that I cannot be pleasant to them. They're grumpy in their own day-to-day lives, so my grumpiness in their presence just absorbs into their general aura of negativity, and as long as I can raise my chin afterwards and simply move on with my day.

But others...

Others make it their duty to be hateful, to be rude, to gossip without fact-checking and to generally be horrible individuals. And when I respond by distancing myself, I am portrayed as the hateful, rude, ignorant and hateful individual.

That infuriates me.

It infuriates me to tears.

Today it was brought to my attention that someone with whom I must interact frequently thinks my distance is "comical." Apparently it's chuckle-worthy that I have decided to save myself emotional turmoil by separating myself from them.

But unfortunately, the emotional turmoil saved by distancing myself has only been compounded once their comments were brought to light.

I hate being hateful. That's why I make an effort not ever to practice hatefulness.**1

But more than that, I hate being falsely portrayed as hateful.

It makes me want to lash out - to ask just exactly what they think they're doing. I want to ask if they're so self-centered that they're convinced I cannot possibly be distant because I want to keep my personal problems personal, so I can't share with them as they're an ignorant gossiping asshat.

I want to spew venom at them until they curl into a ball and leave forever.

I want to tell them how hurtful they're being, to see if even the tiniest flicker of remorse might

And it makes me want to go home and hide until everyone forgets about everything, and I can return to the world without a shred of information being known about me, and I can start up a new life with fresh anonymity and without anyone saying "Oh, you're the one who _______."

So, with that in mind, I post this:

Sunny's Top Ten Reasons For Staying Home (Or Going Home)

1.) A wave of tidiness has swept over me, and I must stay home so I can Clean All The Things. I'll be back tomorrow when I'm slobbish again.

2.) A wave of productivity has swept over me, and I must stay home because this is quite possibly the only time I'll ever feel like finishing that damned lace-knit scarf. I'll be back tomorrow when I'm sluggish again.

3.) A wave of exhaustion has swept over me, and I must stay home because I simply refuse to pry myself out of bed. I'll be back tomorrow when I'm not completely apathetic to the plight of the world.

4.) My hair is excitable today, and I don't wish to subject the public to its shenanigans. I'll be back tomorrow when it's boring again.

5.) There is not a single shred of clean clothing in this house for me to wear, and I must either stay home or show up naked... so I won't be there today. I'll be back tomorrow when I'm tidy again.

6.) A wave of creativity has swept over me, and I must stay home because I'm about to write a novel. I'll be back tomorrow when I'm devoid of personality again.

7.) Boyfriend of Amazingness has the day off, and it's entirely possible that my absence from our shared domicile will lead him to have every ounce of fun and I'll miss it all. I'll be back tomorrow when there's nothing better to do at home.

8.) My dog is taken with a fit of the sillies, and I don't want to miss that fun either. I'll be back tomorrow when she's sleeping lazily on the stairs.

9.) The world is making me grumpy, and I've run out of stickers, and I cannot possibly face humanity without stickers. I'll be back tomorrow once I've bought more.

10.) Someone is being hateful, and I want to spit lemon juice in their eye and run away like a child instead of confronting them and making peace like an adult. I'll be back tomorrow once I've grown up or gotten over it.

**1 Don't get me wrong. On occasion, hatefulness leaks out. But I guarantee you... the guilt and sadness of post-hatefulness is so not worth it.

UPDATE: I originally penned this at lunchtime. I specifically waited until afternoon break to re-read, tidy up the edges and then post. I'm happy to say that, while I'm still not pleased with how this situation has played out, I'm not about to confront anyone. I've resigned myself to the fact that, sometimes, hateful people are just hateful. I'm not going to have a world full of adoring fans - even Santa Claus has to deal with disbelievers. If he can do it (and stay jolly all the while), I've got nothing to complain about.

By tomorrow, it's all going to be okay.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Spontaneity

Summer is finally upon us here in The Great Frozen NorthEast.

But it certainly didn't feel that way over the weekend.

I took a four-day weekend from work for Memorial Day this year. Not in anticipation of any sort of exciting celebration, but just to go camping in Vermont with Boyfriend of Amazingness. Just us, our canvas tent, enough adult beverages to float a small ship and enough blankets to ward off hypothermia.

Except... it spent most of the past week-and-a-half raining on our little slice of heaven.

Now, there's a popular saying that's applied liberally to situations ripe with tourists complaining about the meteorological situations:

"If you don't like the weather in the northeast, wait five minutes."

The idea being that, in five minutes, the weather will have blown over in favor of something new and exciting.

Don't like that it's rainy? In a couple minutes, it'll be windy instead.

Don't like the wind? Give it a tic, and it might just start to snow.

There are a skinny million different weather scenarios that we might brave in a season. So it's not fair to make decisions upon what you're doing over a long-term sort of time frame (like a four day weekend) based solely upon a weather forecast.

All that babbling having been babbled....

That's exactly what we did.

Upon departing from my workplace Thursday, I hastened home and planted myself most firmly upon my couch.

Whereupon this conversation took place:

"It's supposed to rain all weekend."

"Yeah. I heard it's supposed to be dead cold, too..."

"Yeah."

"Yeah. So... what do you want to do?"

"I don't know. What do you want to do?"

"Well... I don't know either."

"Yeah..."

"Yeah..."

We have a little trouble making tough decisions.

But, eventually, we decided that it might be best to stay home. The feelings of mopeyness to miss the first real camping event of the season aside, we both get pretty miserable when we're wet and cold. And once I get cold, I take forever to warm back up... which would leach whatever remaining happiness and warmth Boyfriend of Amazingness happened to sustain.

So instead of venturing into the wilderness of Vermont, we stayed in our warm and toasty house.

And thank goodness for that.

The moment of assurance, when we realized we had absolutely made the right decision, was on Saturday.

When we saw a picture that a friend had sent us of her campsite.

Specifically of a lantern.

Coated in snow.

It was Memorial Day weekend, folks. This is the time of year that the Farmer's Almanac says it's okie dokie to put the little baby seedlings in the ground and they won't die of being too cold.

So again I say... thank goodness we stayed home.

And instead of adventuring in the wilderness of Vermont, Boyfriend of Amazingness and I had a fabulous long weekend filled with spontaneous fun.

We went out to see a movie at a special cinema in Maine that serves food right in the theater as you recline in big, comfy chairs.

We spent time with both of our Moms, taking care of some little projects that needed tending.

We went shopping.

We grilled outside.

We cleaned the kitchen.**1

And most of all, we sat on the couch. We watched movies and television and napped and snuggled.

He played his video games.

I read my book.

If we wanted to do something... we did it.

I feel more rested than I have in weeks.

Happy workweek, Reader Friends!

**1 Spur of the moment decision last evening. Of course that's what I would do at 9:30 on a work night.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Thinkasaurus

So, ReaderFriends, this is a new sort of post for me.

I actually put these words together yesterday as I lay in bed, because I had such a difficult time falling asleep. Although I've gone through and touched up the verbage - either because it was late at night and my words didn't quite make sense, or because autocorrect had its way with my writing - the essence is still the same.

I'm considering this an interesting adventure in creation - I don't know what point I had in mind as I was trying to will myself to sleep, but perhaps going through this exercise will help me remember... and perhaps have a more restful night tonight.

I'm writing this from the touch pad of my phone as I lay in bed tonight.
It's twenty past ten and although I've got the auto-dim feature turned on to keep my phone from glowing like the moon, I'm pretty sure the light is keeping Boyfriend of Amazingness awake so I shall keep it brief.

I had a snack tonight of chocolate chips in a champagne glass. Although it tasted lovely and worked quite fabulously to soothe my PMS-ing self**1, I'm pretty sure I'm as cranked as a kid on Halloween now. My proof: I've been in bed for an hour, and my mind is spinning like a top.**2

I've read my book, but turned off the light so BofA could rest because he's totally pooped. I played with my hair. I got up and filled the humidifier and then turned it on so there could be a little white noise and hopefully grant him some relief from his snoring. Now I'm back in bed, and I'm still a thinkasaurus.

I took a test from Harvard about how well I can tell facial expressions based only upon a person's eyes. Note: they didn't give me the real answers, and that upset me. But I got the practice question wrong, so maybe I don't want to know how I did.

I surfed my favorite social media site for anything interesting that might be happening. The son of a friend just bought a house, and I read about their renovations. It has me a little sad about our own house and how it's not ready for us yet.

Mostly I'm thinking about mortality. It's an important think for me because of life situations, but still one that leaves me feeling unsettled. As I think it through, though, I realize how inane it is for me to fixate. What about mortality can I control in the slightest? My family is a healthy folk. Smokers and heavy drinkers we are not. I eat well. I exercise. I do what I can, and therefore don't have a say in the world over what happens tomorrow.

Well, ReaderFriends, that wasn't particularly enlightening. I remember being terribly upset because I was thinking about death. Not my own, per se, but the passing of people around me.

But as I muddled it over and over, I realized that it's pretty pointless to worry about death. To worry about what might happen if someone doesn't come home from work tomorrow or if their next car ride is their last will leave me only with a sense of dread whenever a loved one departs from my immediate presence. Isn't it a healthier practice, instead, to focus attention intentionally upon making the precious time spent together that much more worthwhile? Then, when the inevitable finally does descend, I'm prepared with an arsenal of positive, happy memories to tide me through my grief.

I'm feeling more peaceful - and more sleepy - already.

**1 Sorry... that might be an overshare. But I don't want you wondering "Sunny, why are you eating chocolate chips out of a champagne glass when they so obviously fit better in a cookie? I needed a more direct vessel, ReaderFriends. I would have taken them intravenously if I had the means.

**2 It never occurred to me as I lay there in bed that the cup of coffee I had at 3:30 in the afternoon might have had something to do with my state-of-awakedness.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Don't Wanna

After a particularly focused dance class today, I'm finding myself lacking any ability at all to make myself write something clever.

After a particularly snuggly night last night with Boyfriend of Amazingness, I'm finding myself lacking any ability at all to make myself do want to be at work.

After a particularly carb-heavy lunch, I'm finding myself lacking any ability at all to make myself be excited about being awake.

After a particularly rainy couple of days, I'm finding myself lacking any ability at all to make myself stay inside now that it's finally drying out so I can get things done.

I'm taken with a fit of the I-Don't-Wanna's.

Since the I-Don't-Wanna's include not wanting to expend the energy to write something even though I really ought to, I tried to find more creative outlets that might help me express this sentiment.

I tried to draw a picture of what I don't want to do.

It mostly looked like a lot of scribbles that I then erased, obviously because I didn't want to make art.

I tried to write a poem.

I got through "Nope. Don't want to."

Obviously this is a deep-seated case, and will take something pretty epic to un-seat it.

It might not even be possible. Perhaps this is such a stubborn case that it will take me straight through all the way to this evening, when I'll get home and fall asleep on the couch in a fit of pique. Or perhaps it will keep me awake straight through till tomorrow, because it will get to bedtime and I won't want to sleep.

There's no way to be certain.

What is certain is that it's going to be an interesting afternoon if I don't shape up.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Too Productive for Work

This morning was sort of an early morning.

I say "sort of" because it wasn't so early as it could have been - we only had to get up about half an hour before we usually do.

But it was rainy... And the rain was making a delightful pitter-patter against the window pane without raining so hard that the sound would make me have to leave my bed-cocoon to go pee...**1 And Boyfriend of Amazingness was being full of snuggles.

So when the alarm went off half an hour before we typically have to rise-and-shine, I didn't want any part of it.

But then, once I did rouse myself, I started having the most productive morning I've had in quite some time.

I showered. I dressed myself, and was happy with the result on the second try. Hair, makeup, brushed teeth, and the rest of the shenanigans that are typically attended in the morning were seen to.

Then I made the bed.

Complete with brandy-new fresh sheets for this evening.

I folded the clean laundry that had made it to the bedroom but needed to be folded.

Then I put it away.

I put the dirty laundry into baskets, ready to be taken downstairs and washed.

I emptied the bedroom trashcan - which was overflowing with dryer sheets and dead socks - and brought everything downstairs to the kitchen trashcan. Upon realizing that this trash filled the can completely, I brought the bag outside and put a fresh one in the kitchen.

I packed my lunch.

I looked at the clock, and it was finally time for me to depart.

As I tied my shoes, I thought about how productive I had been in the past hour.

I hadn't gotten so much done in weeks.

I mean... I had intended to. But there's been the house-hunting thing going on, and the emotions and stress tied to that have made me a Sunny-Zombie. I come home from work, struggle through dinner and then crash on the couch full of sleeps. Sometimes I make it through a couple episodes of a TV show with Boyfriend of Amazingness... but most often I just zonk into dreamland. He wakes me up around bedtime and points me in the direction of Bed.

On weekends, instead of being productive, I sit and I think about everything that needs to get done. Typically there's some social event or another that needs attending. And then... I nap. My mind is exhausted and frustrated.

So this morning, when I awoke all full of rain-assisted sleep and ready to face the day, I thought "Hmm... what a waste. I'm so ready to get things done, and I have to go to work."

Which was the point at which I wondered if it's ever okay to call in "too productive for work."

"I'm sorry, Boss. I can't come in to work today. There's laundry and dishes and vacuuming and I'm seriously thinking I might even get out the dust rag... and I'm just feeling too productive to come sit at my desk today. I'll see you tomorrow, when I'm worn out and pathetic again."

**1 I realized upon re-reading this that I had made it sound ever-so-slightly as though a light rain is cause for peeing in the bed instead of getting up to use the facilities. This is not the case... but it made me giggle so I didn't rephrase it. This clarification is offered for anyone who was worried about my bladder control.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Ruined for Others

This blog post isn't about Boyfriend of Amazingness... although I'm certain that the title led you to think it absolutely had to be.

No... instead, this post is about pancakes.

This past Sunday was Mother's Day. When I think of Mother's Day, I consider a day mostly celebrated by individuals who buy flowers and remember that they probably ought to thank their Mom for being awesome.

This is simply not how we roll.

Much like our response to Valentine's Day, Boyfriend of Amazingness and I (along with our moms) think that it's pretty important to love people every day, not just on the arbitrary date that the calendar dictates.

Sometimes that means "Hey, Mom, it's Tuesday... wanna get dinner together just because?"

Sometimes it means "No, we don't have any real plans today, except for relaxing. It's not a problem for us to come take a look at your lawn mower. Just give us a few minutes to get dressed and we'll hit the road."

And sometimes it's just a "Hi, I wanted to call and tell you I love you."

Earlier this month, I wrote my Mom a post to thank her for being my Mom.

On Saturday, we went out to a little yarn shop and checked that out together.

And on Sunday, my sister asked me to bring Mom to the restaurant where she (sister) works so she (sister) could cook her (Mom) breakfast.

It's that breakfast that brings me here today.

My sister is pretty incredible in the kitchen.

(Actually, she's incredible everywhere. It's just what she does.)

I'm not a huge morning person. It takes me a little time to get going, and then a little more time to figure out which end is up before I'm ready to eat.

But when I looked at the menu on Sunday - even in my caffeine-less state - something jumped out immediately:

Cheesecake Pancakes with Blueberry Sauce.

My God.

These pancakes, I'm pretty certain, were made of pure magic.

I don't know how they did it.

I only know I'll never - not ever - be able to replicate it with any degree of success.

Firstly, they were the perfect temperature. When I make pancakes at home, I often make a full batch and then (and ONLY then) will I sit down with Boyfriend of Amazingness to dine upon them. Which means that, often, they're tepid and slightly soggy by the time it's time to eat.

These were piping hot. And by piping, I mean that I had to funnel up my face and blow little smoke rings so my tongue wouldn't spontaneously combust. They were the perfect temperature.

Secondly, they actually tasted like cheesecake. When I ordered them, I wasn't certain what to expect. Would there be little chunks of soggy cheesecake in the batter? Would it be weird?

No. It was the perfect mixture of cheesecake magic without losing the pancake consistency.

Thirdly, there was no butter on them. That's the best way to ruin a pancake for me - I don't want butter all up in there. I want to taste the syrupy goodness and nothing else.

And that's exactly what I tasted. The blueberry sauce over the cheesecakey goodness left me thinking "Yum... I just ate the best cheesecake I've ever had in my life."

I've been ruined for all other pancakes.

UPDATE:


Inquiring Minds Want to Know:

"Sunny, where did you get these amazing pancakes? They sound so fabulous that I simply must get some of my very own!"

Well, ReaderFriends, I wish you all the best with that endeavor... However, they were served for breakfast at a restaurant which only opened for breakfast on Mother's Day. They're typically only open after 2:00 p.m., at which point they don't often serve pancakes. However, I'm not one to crush a dream so willy nilly - if you'd like to try to find these pancakes for yourself, get in touch with the good folks of the Back Burner restaurant in Brownfield, Maine. You can find more information here.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Last Six Photos

While trolling my favorite social media site today, I came across a "sponsored post" from someone asking me to look through the last six pictures in my phone, and talk about the story they tell.

I thought that was pretty fascinating, so I thought I'd do it.

However, I'm a photo taking maniac. When a photo opportunity presents itself, I often take more than a dozen shots just to make sure I've got the one I'm looking for.

So instead of looking at the last six pictures, I'm going to look at the last six opportunities and discuss the situations that made me whip out my camera. In case of confusion, I'd like to note that these are in order from newest (photo one) to oldest (photo six).


PHOTO ONE:

My Champion Makes Me Proud


As part of a local medieval group, Boyfriend of Amazingness participates in a sport that involves dressing in armor and whacking his buddies with sticks a la the swordfights of ancient times. Since some difficulties earlier this year, he had been abstaining from this particular activity. However, recently Boyfriend of Amazingness took the field for the first time in months. I was wonderfully proud of him for standing up to his own inhibitions and vanquishing them. His post-practice glow was worth every moment since this past January I've spent worrying that he might give up this hobby entirely.


PHOTO TWO:

A Cunning Hat 

 

Boyfriend of Amazingness was called down to our "local" major league ball field for a weekend job. He had to set up a display, and then sit in the sunshine through seven innings of a ball game while he waited for the opportune moment to take down that display. In his down time, he bought me a little plastic ball cap from my favorite team. The only down side was that it would have had ice cream in it if I were at the ball field with him... and that it's too teeny to fit me.


PHOTO THREE:

Change is Necessary...


I took this photo specifically for the doodle on the fridge. Many moons ago, someone doodled me a doodle on a napkin at a restaurant. More specifically, they doodled it for someone else, who left it behind and created a situation of sadface. I assured them I would bring it home with me instead, and would hang it on my fridge. I did, and it stayed there for almost two years. However, as we started packing for our impending move, I realized that it was time to let the doodle go. This was its parting moment.


PHOTO FOUR:

Dance for Every Belly


I recently led a dance class for pre-schoolers, and found this page in one of the story books I used for the reading portion of our time together. The sentiment is so positive and inspiring that I immediately shared it with my social networking site.

Original credit:" "The Belly Book" by Fran Manushkin (1997).


PHOTO FIVE:

And So, It Begins 

This was the very first box I packed for our impending move to Our New House. I packed it full of my trinkety shit, and labeled it thusly. Boyfriend of Amazingness said "Didn't I see you put some of my Marvin [the Martian]s in there?" Thus, the ammendment.


PHOTO SIX:

You Know... I Like Popcorn, Too...


Does this photo really need its story told? There's popcorn in that bowl. There's a dog with a popcorn frenzy. That's all she wrote.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Superstitions

I'm not a terribly superstitious person.

When I'm cooking, and the recipe calls for salt, I pour what I need into the palm of my cupped hand. I dump that into the bowl and then, because my opposite hand usually has a spoon in it or something, I curl my hand into a fist and try to flick the salt off of my (notoriously clammy) palm with my fingernails. Sometimes I flick over my shoulder. Sometimes I flick in front of me. And sometimes it's asking too much of myself, so I just wipe the extra salt on my pant leg and move on.

When I worked construction, I was often the smallest worker on site. So when someone was working on a ladder and dropped something, or they simply needed ground-level assistance, I would walk under said ladder and do what needed to be done. Sometimes I didn't even just pass under the ladder - I would stand there for moments on end. I was little, and I fit. So it made sense.

For a practical sort of someone (as I can be, from time to time...) superstition just doesn't compute.**1 I don't get the salt thing. I don't get the ladder thing. And I really don't get "Friday the Thirteenth."

Today is Monday the Thirteenth. To me, this seems like the day for superstition.

Fridays are always full of win. It's the end of the work week! It's usually a shorter work day, because people can knock off at 4:30 and head out for pre-weekend happy hour. And even if it's a regular-length work day, it's better because there isn't work in the morning. You can get out of work at your regular time and go see a late movie because you don't have to be up in the morning.

It would make so much more sense to me if Monday the Thirteenth were greeted with superstition.

Mondays suck. End of story. Sometimes you can come in to the office and still be rocking the weekend high, but it doesn't last for long. Work sucks the fun and the hope and the happiness right out of you, and you're left with soul-sucking emptiness and the knowledge that you won't rest freely again for another four nights.

I woke up this morning filled to bursting with trepidation. A couple of important phone calls are on the horizon today, so I'll be waiting anxiously for those all day.

I'm stuck at the switchboard today. That fills me with the angst of boredom, because there simply isn't enough to do here to keep an active mind occupied.

I mean, sure... I've got some invoices to do.

I've got a timecard to fill out.

And I get to look forward to tomorrow, when the Receptionist will return brimming with reports of today's medical procedures.

Does that sound lucky to you?

Happy Monday, ReaderFriends!

**1 Boyfriend of Amazingness is even more practical than I, and is absolutely heedless of superstition. Yesterday we fell into a discussion of the tradition wherein a man carries his lady across the threshold of their new home. It's a subject a few friends have broached with us, declaring that (if he loves me at all) he must tote me in. We finally pinpointed his confusion over the situation as we realized that he hadn't the foggiest from whence this tradition had stemmed.**2

**2 In case you're foggy on it too: The tradition came from those age-old days where, typically, a man and his brandy-new bride would get a new home as a wedding gift from their parents, or would purchase a new home that they moved into immediately following their wedding. It was terrible luck for a bride to trip on the threshold of her brandy-new home, and if she did, she couldn't live there. Thus a tradition was born: The man, in order to have a happy and healthy home complete with the bride he just married, would tote her over the threshold and therefore avoid any tripping hazard that might impede his impending conjugal rights. Because, really, that's what it's all about: If the bride can't live there, she can't make his pot roast and they certainly can't do the boogie woogie.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Scatterbrain

I so desperately want to be funny today.

I mean, I've mental-listed all over you all week, so it's about time I share something comedic... right?

But the funniest thing that's happened to me today is a coworker calling to ask if I could take care of the delinquents in the back parking lot who appear to be smoking a crack pipe.**1

So... not a whole lot of fodder there.

Which means I'm prompting it today!

But instead of just one prompt that I'll run with, I think I'll try to answer - in three sentences or less - a multitude of blog prompts.

Let's see where this takes us, shall we?

What show from your childhood would you love to bring back?

I'm not qualified to answer this question, since I don't have a television and I'm not certain what they're airing these days. But I would be doing myself a disservice if I didn't request more episodes of Firefly, which originally aired when I was a child. I guess I pick that.


Try a picture prompt for inspiration.


 I found this picture at http://www.creativity-portal.com/prompts/365/pictures.html.
Okay. This picture looks like I do in the morning, after I've started to perk up but before I've got the gumption to wash my hair. Or maybe after a long day of sticking my fingers in light sockets at the theater, which would explain why I'm singing opera and even my hair is emoting.

What’s the best vacation you ever had?

I like lots of different parts of lots of different vacations. It wouldn't be fair to them for me to choose just one. 

If someone gave you a free plane ticket to anywhere in the world, where would you go?

I think I would probably go where the ticket told me to. I couldn't very well fly to Bora Bora if my ticket said I was destined for Yugoslavia... Although in retrospect, I probably wouldn't accept a free ticket to Yugoslavia.

What’s your favorite rainy day movie?

I'm going to assume this is asking about which movie I enjoy watching on a rainy day. Which is silly, because I don't watch movies on rainy days. On rainy days I listen to the rain and I nap, except when I'm making cookies.

Write a “day in the life” post.

Melvin is a tiny hippopotamus. He lives by himself because he's tiny and the other hippopotami would squish him if they were to hang out together. He wakes, he eats, he poops and he sleeps.

If you could be any age again for a week, which would you choose?

I think I would enjoy being fourteen again. Three boys - a sixteen-year-old, a five-year-old and a two-year-old - kept me running straight through it. One I ran with, and two I ran after. It was a wonderful year.**2

Which of the four seasons best suits your personality?

Springtime, when the sun comes back out and life comes back into the world. It's happy and bubbly and people remember the good stuff. I'm happy and bubbly and sometimes I smell like flowers, but some other times I smell like swamp water (which also happens in the spring).

Search for a random quote. Respond to it on your blog.

I Googled "random quote," and in the interest of posterity I selected the first web page. The quote is "Never compare your inside with somebody else's outside" by Hugh Macleod. I think the dude is on to something there - I could never make my intestines look like someone's face, and it would be silly for me to try.
Describe (in words or photos) your favorite reading space.   My favorite reading space would be a big comfy chair that I can curl up in. It would be just large enough that my legs don't get cramped, but not so large that it deters from the small-reading-nook feel. It would be ideal if it had a cupholder for my beverage and if it were well lit.
Which five characters from novels would you have dinner with?

Charlie and Drew from "A Total Waste of Makeup" by Kim Gruenenfelder
Stephanie and Ranger from Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum series
Harold from "Harold and The Purple Crayon"  by Crockett Johnson**3

If you could have personally witnessed one event in history, what would you want to have seen?

I think I would like to have witnessed the day that Disney World opened. I bet there was lots of free stuff.

Who is your favorite literary character of all-time?

I think we ought to circle back to Harold here. He's just so optimistic, artistic and pleasant. And he eats like a bird, which leaves lots of leftover pie for anyone who hangs out with him.

Create a photo post.

I'm sorry, I can't. I don't have a camera. But I can share this photo of my socks that I posted a while ago, because they're pretty cool.



Write a post with a “cliffhanger” that you’ll resolve in a later post.

Melvin the hippopotamus woke up one day and decided that he wanted to shake things up.

Who is your favorite villain?

I think you're missing the point of villains, prompt generator. A favorite villain is an oxy-moron, like "delicious fat-free ice cream." Although perhaps Ben and Jerry's could be considered villainous towards waistlines, so I guess I pick them.

Your book is a movie! Who’s in your dream cast?

I, obviously, am played by Scarlett Johansen. It would only make sense that Boyfriend of Amazingness be played by someone like Robert Downey Jr, who is a funny and sexy badass. Minor characters need not apply... because they'd probably be burned up by the amazing supernova created when these stars' proximity breaches minimum acceptable distance.

5 Items you would buy with a million dollars.

(3) houses - one apiece for my mother and my sister, and one for Boyfriend of Amazingness and I to share - (1) subcompact car for me and (1) new truck for Boyfriend of Amazingess

Yeah... I think that'll do. Happy Friday, ReaderFriends!

**1 My question was this: If it wigs you out to hear me tell you that I have to go pee, how in the hell do you know what a crack pipe is?

**2 Oops. That was a four sentencer.

**3 HA. Five people, three sentences.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Zoom! Zoom! Zoom!

I love The Big Bang Theory.

Now, I don't have cable... or regular television at all, really... so I just own every available season on DVD and watch them over and over again until I've memorized every line and found every idiosyncracy that helps me feel connected to the show.

As such, many of my day-to-day happenings can be fit inside the parameters of this SitCom.

For instance, today my brain feels like Flash Sheldon with The Banana.



(Video Credit - ZoMBiSLaYa on YouTube, and to Chuck Lorre/Bill Prady who write this ingenious stuff.)

But my body isn't keeping up.

Seriously. My brain is running about a thousand miles a minute, and all I want to do is write a funny blog post and take a nap. But instead it's all fixated.

It's thinking about how I'm supposed to have dinner tonight with my god daughter. We were going to get lunch, but I'm stuck at work. So instead we're going to meet for dinner, possibly with our guys, and then get ice cream. Ice cream is delicious. I wish I had some now.

Mother's Day is on Sunday. I've already coordinated her gift - phone and internet! Wahoo! - but am still feeling like something isn't taken care of yet. I'll see her on Saturday... maybe that's it? That the gift isn't the point, and that I miss her and want to give her a hug? Saturday will be busy, but there will be time for hugs.

Saturday... I have to make sure I'm ready. I need to download the music, and make sure the playlist is taken care of. I need to locate the box that's holding the music player and the music transmitter, and make sure it's packed and ready to go. I need to make sure the tiny hip scarves are ready, and that I've tracked down my glitter markers. And I need to pack the books.

And while we're thinking about Mother's Day, we ought to do something for Boyfriend of Amazingness' mom. She asked that we not, but we should do something... I mean, seriously. She's Mom.

I need to answer the phone that's currently ringing. Wow, my voice sounds weird... so slow and calm. It almost makes me feel more crazy to hear me.

That's right, I totally forgot. I'm at work. I have invoices to take care of. And an e-mail to draft to a client, after I've finalized that document. I should take care of that before I forget.

But speaking of e-mails... I have to make sure I've taken care of everything from the Realtor. And the bank. And the people who're touching base about my hobbies, with whom I've got to follow up.

The Realtor. Ugh. Is there anything I owe them? Have we done everything we can? What if the Seller isn't holding up their end of the bargain? Is there absolutely anything I can do about it?

No.

Stop.

TOO FAST.

Right now, I can focus on work. I can focus on hiking up my shirt - which, by the way, is slowly slithering south to show off my new pink-and-white striped bra to the whole world  - and taking care of immediate issues.

Because, seriously, I'm not built for this craziness. My body is sleepy and lethargic. Which wouldn't be an issue if I had gone to sleep instead of lying in bed last evening listening to the rain against the window and trying to think of a synonym for "tap" that would explain the sound it was making. If I had just shut my brain up last night and slept, I wouldn't be in this conundrum at all.

But instead I indulged in some wordcraft, while it was too dark to write. So it all rattled around in my brain.

Serves me right, silly girl that I am.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Kindergarten

I am particularly pooped today.

For no good reason, I seem to be completely void of energy.

It cannot possibly be because Boyfriend of Amazingness are buying a house together. That cannot be sucking energy out of me in wisps of wait-tastic stress.

It cannot possibly be because work is a little crazy right now, with health issues going on all over the place and schedules being shaken like one of Bond's martinis. Nope, I'm pretty sure that's not it.

It cannot possibly be because I spent last evening chasing a Small Someone around Boyfriend of Amazingness's practice. Even with slaying that crocodile**1, I don't think that would do it.

I don't think it's because it's half past one and I haven't had my lunch yet...

I don't think it's because I attended my lunch time dance class today and spent a whole hour twirling and wiggling and giggling...

And I don't think it's because I hit my forehead off of the back of Boyfriend of Amazingness's cranium last evening as I snuggled in to fall asleep as Big Spoon, and then fell asleep with a nagging headache that poked me in the brain all night.

No, I'm pretty sure I'm sleepy because it's nap time.

Corporate America, you gotta get in touch with your Kindergarten roots. We're missing out.

**1 It was big, and lived on a picnic table. The only way to conquer it was by flailing at it with a broken rose stem. Fortunately we had fairy wings so we could just fly away when it threatened to overtake us.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Poor Planning...

A PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT
For Incompetent Planners


There's a phrase I've heard used liberally throughout my daily meanderings.

I've heard it at work... I've heard it at play... I've even heard it at the grocery store.

That phrase is this:

"Poor planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on mine."

Basically it's a statement that indemnifies the speaker from having to drop everything and pull the asker out of an abyss of panic just because the asker failed to budget their time correctly from the start of a particularly difficult project.

(How's that for a poorly-cobbled sentence. Sheesh.)

I don't apply this statement liberally throughout my life.

I'm a helper. When someone has a crisis, I try to pitch in.

It works out pretty well, since I too have crises on occasion, and it's nice to have some help to get me through it.

But, there are individuals who just need to help themselves.

Mostly these are the particularly needy folks who leech on to any available life form and slowly suck the willingness to rise and shine right out of them. They prey upon kindness and helpfulness as sustainance for their all-consuming codependence.
It is mostly for those folks that I have created this list:

SUNNY SMILES' GUIDE TO
EMERGENCY SITUATIONS

 
Emergency Tier 1
Yes, this is a major emergency. It is acceptable to panic.
It is expected that you will need assistance with this situation.

* You - or a direct relative - has lost a body part or is otherwise mangled.

* Someone's life - person or pet - is in the balance.

* The apocalypse has come.


Emergency Tier 2
This is a minor emergency. It is not unheard of to panic, but it helps the situation if you don't.
Assistance readily supplied upon request.

* You left the stove on.

* Your basement is slowly filling with water.

* The doctor calls asking to schedule some follow-up tests because something isn't right.

Emergency Tier 3
This is an inconvenience. It is not acceptable to panic.
Assistance will only be available by the kindest individuals who desperately want to help you.

* Your car won't start.

* You misplaced your cell phone/glasses.

* The dog ate [insert your non-lethal substance here. For lethal substances, escalate to Tier 1].


Emergency Tier 4
This is a normal part of human life. It is not acceptable to panic, or even to suggest that this is a worrisome situation.
You will be ridiculed if you seek assistance.

* Traffic or road construction happens somewhere during your commute.

* I left the grocery shopping until the refrigerator was completely empty and I haven't any bonbons for snack.

* The little light in my car came on and now I need an oil change.**1
So, hopefully, that breakdown helps. It provides a basic reaction to whatever scenario may be playing out before you.
As a helpful aside, unnecessary escalation is cause for ignoring future pleas for assistance. For instance, if you escalate a Tier 4 issue to a Tier 2 issue, the next time you have a legitimate Tier 2 issue you're likely to be ignored altogether. The Emergency Paradox walks hand in hand with the Crying Wolf Paradigm.

RaYD,
Sunny

**1 Yeah, I've heard that one. "The light came on and I've got to go get an oil change right now! You can cover me, right?" And then she ran out the door.

Yeah. Ran.