Answers…..

I’m sure you’re DYING to know the results of my polls.  I have been overcome with emotion at the sheer volume of responses.  All this time I thought I only had three readers.  Oh no, dear friends!  I was underestimating my funny!

THERE ARE SEVEN OF YOU!  SEVEN!

I can hardly stop the tears from welling up.

(I have an average of 35 hits a day and while that may seem small and insignificant to a pro blogger, and while 85% of those are Google accidents, I must say that I feel honored that THAT MANY people actually stop by on a daily basis to see what kind of crap I’m rambling about now.  The fact that seven of you would take the time to vote makes me see rainbows and kitten-filled bubbles.  Even if five of you are related to me.  NO I’M NOT BEING SARCASTIC I SWEAR.)

So!  For the results!

On the issue of Coffee:

Five of you find coffee to be as fulfilling as I do.  It is your propellant in the morning, your fuel during the day and your late-night comrade.  You also have a completely flushed digestive tract and the bladder of a camel.

One of you is in it for the free wifi, which……….dood, I totally understand.  Barnes & Noble ROCKS.

One of you thinks it’s yuck.  I don’t think we can be friends anymore.

*****

On the issue of Men With Goatees -

You’re all kinda divided on this one.  Personally, I think the right cut on the right face is grounds for some bomchickawahwah, while others might as well go on and send the local authorities their front and profile shots cuz that right there?  Is a crime.

Three of you think goatees are dignified.

Yeah.  About that………

*****

On the issue of Elderly Drivers:

Everyone voted for respect!  I’m so proud! 

Wait…..there were only 6 votes.  Meaning one of you didn’t find an applicable answer.  I’m going to assume that means one of you lets your cat handle the road rage for you.  I mean, that IS the only other logical explanation.

*****

On the issue of Spiders:

Most of you share my thoughts on spiders.  A couple of you (MAWM) think spiders are here for the greater good and they will protect your plants from harmful insects and yada yada yada.

Well.

 

WHAT NOW?!

*****

Aaaaaaand last but most definitely not least, the issue of This Here Blog:

There’s a lot of puckerin’ goin’ on!  SIX of you think I’m funny!  One (I know who you are! ;0)  ) could do with a little less of the EFF WORD.  I’ll try to tame it down a little.  Unless there’s another spider in my office.  Then we’ll have to compromise.  That shit’s nothing to fuck around with.

 

Question….

I’ve made the executive decision that since my readers RARELY COMMENT, IF EVER I’m going to find out about y’all on my own!  I’ve composed five polls, all with important and life-affirming subjects.  This will help me to get a better feel for what kind of people find me interesting enough to keep reading.  Just remember, high tech research and development went into these polls.  I expect you all to take them VERY SERIOUSLY.

Thank you for your time and attention!  I’LL BE JUDGING YOU.

The Spider. THE BIG EFFING SPIDER.

Look.  Let’s just forego the obligatory sorry-I-haven’t-posted-in-awhile spiel and get straight to the important thing I have to tell you.  You’re all well aware that I’m busy and a parent and so absent-minded that I forget I have a blog sometimes.  So.  To the point.

THERE WAS A SPIDER IN MY OFFICE THE SIZE OF A SMALL CHILD YESTERDAY. (Reason #1 why it took me 35 days to write another post.  Instead of 34.) (Because you can’t just WALK BACK INTO a room that housed a 6 ft. spider* without knowing WHERE THE FUCK HE WENT.) (Look.  I MAY have screamed like a boy and ran through the door faster than it actually opened.  And I MAY have run through our manufacturing facility in flip-flops frantically looking for the first person I could find that grows chest hair to COME KILL IT.  KILL IT NOW.) (That spawn of hell MAY have DISAPPEARED while I was out screaming in flip-flops.)

(Also:  when I walked into my office and spotted him on the floor, he was totally, absolutely LOOKING AT ME.  Ya know, like he was SIZING ME UP.  YOU WIN, MOTHERFUCKER.)

After being unsuccessful at finding chivalry on our production line (they act like their WORK is more important!  Phhffbbbt!!!) I hauled ass upstairs to the administrative office to find somebody, anybody to go look for him.  And SET HIM ON FIRE DAMMIT.  (I MAY have been slap in the middle of a panic attack at this point, I don’t remember.)(But probably was.  People were staring.  And pointing.  And laughing.)

One of our engineers took it upon himself to go hunt him down and smoosh him.  AND THEN BRING HIM BACK UPSTAIRS TO SHOW EVERYBODY, INCLUDING ME.

There was an up-side and a down-side to this act of heroism.  Up-side being that The Beast was dead.  And my new boss took one look at him and quit making his “was-it-THIS-big-Liz?” jokes while holding his arms over his head as if he were singing the “out comes the sun” part from, oh I dunno, THE DAMN ITSY BITSY SPIDER SONG.

The down-side?  HE BROUGHT HIM BACK UPSTAIRS TO SHOW EVERYBODY, INCLUDING ME.

I had to call my husband.  He’ll be compassionate about this.  He understands my phobia.  Sort of.  Ok, maybe he just tolerates it.  Anyway.

I guess he was busy working or something cuz he sorta acted like he didn’t have time to listen to my story, nor to tell me to breathe deep.  Or to breathe at all.  Hmph.

And THEN.  One of my coworkers was all I stepped on a spider once.  And a ton of baby spiders started running everywhere.

*insert screeching record sound here*

‘Scuse me?

Immediate flashback to Charlotte’s Web where Charlotte’s eggs hatch and THOUSANDS OF BABY SPIDERS EMERGE.

(And yes, I’m well aware that Charlotte’s Web was animated.  And I can’t bring myself to watch the modern version a la Dakota Fanning because I sense they used a real spider since she was a real girl and Wilbur was a real pig.  And by real, I mean REAL.)

Y’all, this is the shit of my nightmares.  I kid you not.  I mean, I’m about to have a panic attack just writing about it.  Seriously.  Too soon, maybe?

So.  I have since constructed a foot stool to go under my desk so that my feet do not have to touch the floor.  And I have a freshly-refilled bottle of Envirocide next to my keyboard, at the ready.  I know it will kill spiders because it says it kills AIDS.  Well, I’m ASSUMING it can kill spiders if it can kill AIDS.  Maybe I need something stronger?

Anybody got a torch I can borrow?

*6 ft. = approximately 4 inches in diameter.  Maybe 3.  DEFINITELY not less than 3.

Where I’m From…

I’m from rural farm country and cute little Amish kids with bowl-cuts and bonnets, manners and kindness.  I’m from home-grown gardens and Ball canning jars.  I’m from pastures of hay and landscape upon landscape of old,  living barns. 

I’m from the little, yellow farmhouse nestled in the scent of summer lilacs.

I’m from Hibiscus the size of your head, Lamb’s Ears and Lily Of The Valley.  From Hosta-lined sidewalks and all the fuzzywuzzyworms you can catch.

I’m from The Big Christmas with Good Grandparents, from Margaret Caroline and Betty Jo, from Paschke and Cameron, from Saad and from Gunter. 

I’m from wicked intelligence and sun-kissed work ethic.

From barn rafters and cow tongues and hay bales and shit forks.  From boats and beaches and garage bands and Tarheels.

I’m from the music of Lutheran, the values of Presbyterian, and the individual spirit of Jesus.

I’m from Lee and from Mercer, from the dot on the map and the blink-and-you-miss-it, from small and from smaller, both familiar and endearing. 

I’m from more raisins than two scoops could ever be, from spiked apple cider and from no-bake and oatmeal chocolate chip.  I’m from “don’t tread too heavily – the bread will fall” and from “I forgot the fork.  They’ll be peanut butter balls.”

From the equestrian lover and computer geek, from the teacher and the dean, from the entrepreneur and the housewife.  From the rich and the poor, the sickness and the health, the here and the hereafter. 

I am from oil paintings on canvas, Baby Grand pianos, a single trip to Disney World and a ’68 Camaro.  I’m from a hiding spot on the roof above the stairwell and the spotlight shining down on the stage.  I’m from a little white dress with unicorns dancing and a butterfly t-shirt, four sizes too big.  I’m from love and from laughter, from tears and from pain.  All of these things, I’d do over again.

 

This post is inspired.

My Summer Reading List. Also, Cheese Problems Are Expensive.

Because everyone else is doing it, please let me share with you my summer reading list:

Category:  Children’s Books

 Go The F**k To Sleep

(Do you ever feel so connected to a book that you just know it was written specifically for you?)

Category:  Religion

Nostradamus Ate My Hamster

followed promptly by

The Hollow Chocolate Bunnies Of The Apocolypse

(By the way, according to my calculations, the Chocolypse is scheduled for February 30th.  I hope you’re ready.)

Category:  Medical

The Thackery T. Lambshead Pocket Guide To Eccentric and Discredited Diseases

(Thank God it’s a pocket guide.  Quick reference is always best in the face of eccentricity.)

Category: Inspirational/Self-Help

What’s Your Poo Telling You?

(I think the REAL question here is:  are you listening?)

Cheese Problems Solved

(This gem will only set you back a cool $199.08.  A small price to pay to figure out how to get those holes out of your Swiss, eh?)

How To Shit In The Woods

(The Second Edition.  Revised.)

And, finally

Category:  Gardening

The Humanure Handbook

(Apparently, your poo is telling you that your tomatoes are lacking.)

Must-haves, I know!  I’m totally up for a book club so we can discuss.

Husbands: For Squishing Spiders and Changing Brake Lights

I had to replace my brake light yesterday.  (And by “had to”, I mean “wanted to do it all by myself.  Don’t need a silly husband to change a light bulb.”)  I marched up to the auto parts store all I got this and efficiently purchased a pack of two light bulbs that were self-proclaimed “longer lasting” than their competitors.  I paid for my merchandise and walked out to the parking lot ready to conquer this lightbulb and be on way to more important business.  Like Frappucinos.

I got out the trusty owner’s manual for reference, deciding it would be best to follow step-by-step directions as I’d never done this before.  Like, ever.

Step 1:  Open TrunkCheck.

Step 2:  Remove the compact spare tire cover.  Check.  This is cake.

Step 3:  Remove 4 convenience net nut wings.   I have convenience net nut wings?  I have a convenience net?  Okay.  Turn.  Turn.  Turn.  Geezus.  How long are these screws?  Turn.  Turn.  Turn.  Okay.  Check.  Check.  Check.  Aaaaaaaand check.

Step 4:  Pull the carpet back away from the body of the vehicle on the side with the burned out bulb.  This is…….carpet?  But it’s…….stiff.  Like…….fiberglass.  Maybe if I just……….oops.  Okay.  No biggie.  I’ll just turn my head upside down and peer through this tiny crack to see what I’m doing.  It can’t be that hard.  Except my head is blocking the only available stream of light.  Oh, well.  I’ll feel around.  Really, it can’t be that hard.

Step 5:  Remove the two mounting screws from the lamp assembly.  What the hell is the lamp assembly?

*Walks into auto body store all anybody got a wrench?  I totally know what I’m doing, I just don’t have my handy dandy set of Craftsman with me.  Proceed back out to parking lot with wrench.*

Okay, mounting screws.  Could be those.  Or those.  Or……….those or those.  These look like they might be………………screws.

*Wipes sweat that is beginning to run down back of neck.  Finagles wrench into small slit and attempts to remove (maybe the correct?) screws.  Turn.  Turn.  Turn.  Wipes more sweat.  Brushes hair from face.  Turn.  Turn.  Turn.  Wipes more sweat.  Moves head to allow small iota of light to shine on the (maybe correct?) screws.  Contemplates a short break for a Slush Puppy from the gas station next door.  Turn.  Turn.  Turn.  Brushes hair from face.  Gazes up at sun.  Swears she hears the doo doo doo wah wah wah theme from the Showdown at the OK Corral.  Turn.  Turn.  Turn.  !#$#!#$  Wipes sweat again.  Turn.  Turn.  Turn.* There!  They’re off!

Step 6:  Pull out the lamp assembly to expose the bulb sockets.  I guess I’ll pull here………or…………………………not.  Okay.  Maybe that wasn’t it.  Let’s see.  Lamp assembly.  Lamp assembly.  Lamp.  Assembly.

*Contemplates the hard truth that those screws may not have been the right screws.  Decides this was not such a good idea.  Proceeds to driver’s seat, grabs phone, sends text to husband that reads something like stupid lightbulb effing car goddern wing nuts do i have a convenience net? then walks back inside to clerk to return borrowed wrench with very defeated look.  Smiles, thanks clerk, walks back out to car.  While checking to be sure all wing nuts/spare tire covers/other-various-plastic-parts-that-come-off-when-you-remove-convenience-net-wing-nuts are back in trunk, brake light FALLS OFF THE CAR.*

So.  THAT’S the lamp assembly.

*Stops to appreciate the fact that, yes, those were, in fact, the correct screws.  Walks back into store to borrow wrench again.  Returns to car with wrench but very little remaining pride.*

Step 7:  Turn the bulb socket one-quarter turn counterclockwise and pull the bulb and socket out of the lamp reflector.  Oh, look!  I see the bulb socket!  And……….two other bulb sockets.  So.  I wonder which one is out?

*Decides that what the hell, might as well replace them both while the entire trunk, piece by piece, is sitting on the asphalt anyway.*

Step 8:  Pull the old bulb from the bulb socket keeping the bulb straight as you pull it out.  Check.  Twice.

Step 9:  Install a new bulb.  Check.  Twice.

*Successfully replaces both potentially burned out bulbs.  Smiles at self.  Looks at ground, notices entire contents of trunk, including 6 (I thought there were 4?) convenience net wing nuts spread out, ready for reinstallation.  Smile fades.  Picks up owner’s manual.*

Step 10:  Reverse the steps to reinstall the lamp assembly.  Fuck.

*Returns to store counter to return wrench.  Clerk obliges request for a test press of brake pedal to be sure she-who-knows-exactly-what-she’s-doing has done exactly what she was supposed to.  Test proves successful.  Thanks clerk and returns to trunk to begin reassembly.  Notices convenience net peeking from beneath spare tire.*

Aha!

*Spends next 20 minutes trying to make trunk look the same way it looked when she started.  Texts husband brake light replaced found convenience net I rock.  One rogue wing nut left good luck with that.*

Learn a lesson in Things-That-Are-Better-Left-To-Professionals-Or-Husbands.  Check.

Uh……Just Stuff

I forget that there are actually a few of you out there who enjoy reading my blog.  Sorry, You Three.  I’ve been thinking lately that I’d like to start posting daily.  Journal style.  But then my writing sort of rambles because I end up typing my thoughtstream in realtime and then I read back and see that I have a run-on sentence or ten, the wrong punctuation and too many “ands” and I sometimes don’t make any sense to anyone other than myself.  Sounds like a good time, if you ask me.

I lost my third cell phone in 45 days.  OK, well, not really “lost”.  The first one…..broke.  It just…..broke, okay?  The second one committed suicide by way of toilet water while I was trying to drop my pants and use said toilet.  And this last one made a jump for it into the air vent.  The one without the cover on it.  I freaked out about it at first.  Mostly because it was 5:30 in the morning and one should not have to shove one’s arm into a dark, spidertastic hole before one takes one’s first morning pee.  But also because I was tired of having to worry over getting yet another cell phone.  I had decided, by the time I pulled my arm out of the hole with the sick sixth sense that I could’ve SWORN I just brushed my fingertip against a cluster of legs, that I didn’t need a goddern cell phone.  Chris, on the other hand, has this thing about me driving to another town and back with the children every day without any means to call him if I have a flat tire, run out of gas or am stuck behind one of those damn student drivers.  So.  Under the house he went.  To cut my cell phone out of the air duct.  In his boxers.  And a coat.  He emerged approximately 60 seconds later drenched in sweat from the waist up.  With what I can only assume were zero spider/snake bites as he didn’t break into hives, seizures or death.  If one can “break into” death.  Heh.

Aaaaaaand I have my cell phone back.  With fiberglass on it too, apparently, since it makes my ear itch when I use it. 

Has anybody seen the previews for The Bridesmaids?  That movie looks hilarious.  I mean, if the trailer can make me pee myself, then you know the movie is a riot. That Melissa McCarthy is talent.  What other 200 lb. woman can throw her leg on the shoulder of a hot mantendant in the aisle of a 747?  Besides me, of course.  Talent.

Also, for any of you who have not heard of or listened to Adele, you must do yourself a service and drown yourself in her latest album, 21.  It’s like Alanis Morrissette’s Jagged Little Pill.  In brilliance, not style.  It’s bleeding with gutwrenching emotion that every girl, at one point or another, can relate to.  It’ll have you singing into your fist with your eyes squinted shut and your hand clenched to your chest.  Until you realize you’re operating a motor vehicle.

Much of my spare time has recently been devoted to photo editing.  I’m no expert, but I’ve taken a fancy to this stuff and I’m so excited about the what I’ve come up with.  It makes me see sparkles.  I’m now on a let’s-decorate-the-whole-house-in-photography mode and am planning out my decorating methods.  I’m also keeping the laundry done and cooking.  What the hell is up with me?

(I swear I’m not pregnant.)

So.  Here’s some edited shots I’ve done:

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Not bad, yeah?

And, lastly, well……….that’s it.