Entries RSS Comments RSS

A man, a boat, and a show

July 21st, 2010

I am crying after watching a tribute to man I have never met.

I a slight television addict.  I prefer non-fictions shows that show real people in real life situations.  One in particular is a show that I follow, and have since it started.

The show is called Deadliest Catch, on the Discovery Channel.

It is about the crab fishing fleet in the Bering Sea, hoping to catch crab and make it out alive.

Now, I do not like the cold (hello, I live in ARIZONA), I get sea sick on boats (and planes and cars and sometimes in my living room) and I cannot eat crab (allergic).

So why the hell am I so into this show?

There are real people dealing with real shit.

And it is addicting.

I have followed this show since it started, and that has been for about 6 years.  I have seen ships sink, men die, and fortunes earned.

And it felt like I have been there the whole time.

The filming is awesome, and there is no scripting whatsoever.  These men (and there are pretty much only men) are real.  They deal with conflicts, illness, discord, and family issues all while fighting for their lives trying to make their fortune on the Bering Sea, doing one of the most deadliest jobs in the world.

And I love it.

Why do I, and so many millions of others, love this show?

It has to be the people.  We can relate to them, and with the shit they deal with.

I mean, we all have not had the experience of crab fishing on the Bering Sea- very few people in the world ever had, and some do not make it back alive.

But we can relate.

We all have had a boss we did not like, and wished we did not have to deal with.  Enter the ship captains and the deckhands.

We all have had co-workers that should have worked harder, and done more, and ones that we have covered for.  Enter the deckhands working together.

And we all have been in nasty situations, made worse by any number of factors, such as weather, stress, and fear.  That pretty much describes every day on a Bering Sea crab boat.

That is why we watch this show, and how it has become one of the most watched shows on Discovery Channel.  It is not for the love of crab fishing, it is for the love of the crab fishermen.

We invite these men and their families into our living rooms every week, and we watch their lives.  We laugh, cry, celebrate, and mourn with them.  We hold our breaths when a crab pot is pulled over the rail, hoping along with the crew that it is stuffed.  We cheer when we see them filling the boat’s tanks to the top, and suffer their pain when the crews work 48 hours straight.  We laugh at the pranks and smile at the greenhorns.

We live with the crews, if only in our hearts.

That is why I am crying.

A great Captain passed away this past season.  Phil Harris of the Fishing Vessel Cornelia Marie died.  He was a good man with a good heart.  He lived hard, and played harder.  According to Phil, he smoke, drank, and did every drug known to man.  We loved him despite, or maybe because of his faults.  He was human, and did nothing to hide it.

His two sons, Josh and Jake, worked with him on the boat.  They were beside their dad during his last days, and mourned his loss.

As we all did.

The show Deadliest Catch did a tribute to Captain Phil.  After watching it this season, I am sure that it will win some sort of media award.  But that is not what matters to the captains and crews of the Bering Sea crab fleet.

They lost a family member, and are in pain.

We all are.

We miss you Phil.

God Bless, and God Speed.

SATC, Phoenix style

July 18th, 2010

This was written a few weeks ago, when the movie Sex and the City 2 premiered.

It is three A.M. and I am jacked up on caffeine, wearing full makeup, a glitzy shirt, sparkly sandals, and huge earrings.  Allow me to tell you how I arrived at this destination.

My college friend Heather came to town on her vacation.  She lives in Tucson, about 2 hours away, but she and I have not seen each other in forever.  It has been almost five years- the last time I saw her was at my wedding.  So she came into town and we met for lunch and window shopping.  While out and about, I saw an advert for Sex and the City 2, which was showing at midnight tonight.  I suggested she and I go see it- we had both wanted to.  We bought our tickets and parted ways, promising to meet up again at the theater around 11.

Being someone who is compulsively early (ok, not for everything, but early for Manolo Blahniks on the big screen), I left my house at 10.  Got to the theater complex, parked in an awesome spot, and went inside to line up.

There is when the pre-show began.

As I walked my way towards the end of the line, I saw three men.

And they all were gay.

All the rest were women.

And these women were trying very hard to be one of the Fabulous Four in SATC.

I saw shoes of all colors and styles- some in fashion and purchased at Sacks and Nordy’s, other in questionable taste and purchased from Stripper’s R US, if there is such a place.

There were earrings- some real, most fake.  And there was a girl with a bunch of blue feathers in her hair.  Not quite sure what kind of statement she was looking to make, but it sure was one that still showed she needed her mom to get her into an R movie.

I saw a woman with an infant in a carrier.  Shortly after, we were treated to the show of her (and her mother) cussing out the manager for not permitting the baby in the theater.  Apparently, children under 3 are not permitted to see R movies after 6 PM.  Who would have thought- why hire a babysitter?  The kid is going to sleep through the movie.

Sure, provided that he could handle all the screaming queens in the back when Liza Minelli appeared on screen.

Heather and I were close in line to these queens.  They were the full package- guy liner, tight jeans, tight shirts, and loose lips.  They had more estrogen in them then I did!

We thought they were just trying too hard to play the part of the diva queen.  Ladies, word to the wise- REAL divas do NOT wear shoes from Goodwill bin!  Or if they do, they call them vintage, not “shoes from some dead guy my boyfriend found for me.”

Then there was the issue of the gender confused.  We saw a person- cannot say if it was a man or a woman- all dressed in black, alone in line.  Would have been a crapshoot to determine the person’s gender- he/she was carrying a handbag, but had very masculine features.  Heather mentioned how sad it was for gender confused person to be alone in a movie- perhaps there should be a support group.  I laughed myself all the way to the seat.

We scored seats in the front part of the stadium section where the metal handrail is.  Perfect for a footrest, and no one in front of us!

Heather went to get her popcorn, and I was relaxing and watching the previews.

Until the kicking started.

The little blonde Brittany (I call them all Brittany, just to make life easier) was kicking the back of my chair with her Payless platform.  And it was pissing me off.

I turned around, and politely asked her to stop kicking my seat.

She and her other clones all went silent, but the kicking stopped.

For five minutes. There was dead silence after my request, then a whispered comment- I heard the word bitch- and then giggling.

And then the kicking began again.

I waited a minute to see if she would stop, but this Brittany was persistent.

Using my quick reflexes, I reached around just as she was gearing up for a kick and grabbed her ankle.

I told her, very politely, that if she did not knock it off, I was going to break her cheap heel off and shove it up her ass.  And for the record, this is me being a bitch.

She stopped.  And there was no giggling.  But I am pretty sure I heard the word bitch mentioned again.

And I am OK with that.  After all, it has taken me 31 years to refine my skills, and I am not going to waste an opportunity to use them.  And if the Brittanys and her clones did not like it, they can kiss the fattest part of my ass.

So began the movie- or shall I say, the previews.

Why is it that there re always as least 20 minutes of previews before a show?

And really people, do I care to see what the latest in the pigtails and braces league is hollering about, what with the newest Twilight movie (New moon eclipses the dawn, or something like that).

Then the show begins.

Overall, it was pretty good.

Heather gave it an awesome and very concise summation- it is porn for women and gay men.  There are great clothes and shoes and jewelry, sex scenes (no frontal nudity, but lots of innuendoes), scandal, and karaoke.  What more could a girl ask for?

It was great chance to be with my girlfriend, and also helped me realize I am happy with who I have become.

I am 31 years old, and do not qualify to shop in “petites” or even single digit clothing sizes.  I have an attitude, and have no qualms about expressing my opinion when I am pissed off.  Over the years, I have learned to temper my tongue, but on some occasions, words escape my food hole before going through the editing process between brain and mouth.  But for the most part, I am a nice, adult woman.

As I was driving home on the deserted 51 freeway, I was considering where I am at in my life.  It was about 3 AM, and the road was clear, it was a full moon and lovely night.  The moon roof was open, and I was rocking out the Michael Buble (as much as anyone can rock out to him- but he is soooo smmmmoooooottthhhhhh).

I was merging to get on the 101 west to get to my house, some assclown decided to speed up out of nowhere, cut me off, and then slowed down in front of me.

Did I smile, shrug, and laugh it off?

Or did I honk the horn and give him the one fingered salute out the moon roof?

I am confident you can guess correctly.  And to give you a hint- it involved me being a bitch.  And I am OK with that.  After all, I think I’ve earned that right.

From a Shelter Cat

July 18th, 2010

This was inspired by my former shelter cat, Sasha, as he was on my stomach purring.  Please remember- do not breed and buy while shelter pets die.  Opt to adopt!

I am a shelter cat.

I may have been on the streets,

Or in a home.

I was all alone

I had no one to call my own

Until you came in

And saw me there

In a cramped cage

With little room

To jump and play

And no laps to purr on

No one to love me

You may see a huddled ball

Hiding and scared

Do not judge me on what I am now

Look at where I am now

And tell me that you too

Would not feel sorrow or fear

Here is better than where I was

But I want to be there

There is a home with lots of love

And toys and laps and beds and sunshine

And someone to call my own

I do not have long to live

For there are too many like me

With stories like mine

And not enough homes for all of us

I was turned in and told to be good

That someone would love me for who I am

And would look past the matted coat and fearful eyes

I want to be yours

Would you be mine?

I do not ask much, just some food and water

And lots of love

I will give it in return

You will see it in my eyes and hear it in my purr

When I sit on your lap and snuggle close

Thanking you for picking me

Please pick soon

Your soulmate is waiting

-inspired by Sasha

You’ve got mail, Fido!

July 14th, 2010

“We got hate mail about the dog today,” John tells me.

“Really? No way!  I thought that stuff only happened on TV or in Jen Lancaster’s books,” I replied.

We did.  We really got hate mail about the dog.  It reads in its entirety:

May 4, 2010

ATTN: Barking dog owner at  —-, Px [sic], AZ 85027

RE: Violation of Phoenix City Ordinance, Sec. 8-2 Barking or Howling Dogs

This letter is being sent to you on behalf of several of your neighbors.  We are extremely unhappy with the fact that you walk your dogs around this neighborhood and allow them to bark uncontrollably.  Even this morning you chose to annoy the whole neighborhood while walking your dogs at 5:30 a.m.!  Even weekends are no concern for you!  Even more frustrating is the fact that you don’t seem to stop them from barking.

We respectfully request that you no longer walk your dogs within our neighborhood without a bark collar.  A second observation of this violation will result in you neighbors filing a formal complaint with the city which could result in fines.

Sincerely,

Your Frustrated Neighbors.

Oh no, they DIDN’T! They are DOGS.  They will BARK.  It is the nature of the beast!

Did I mention that John, my wonderful and loving husband is having to take care of the animals (2 dogs, 8 cats) due to fact that I am injured.

From falling in a POTHOLE.

At a gas station.

As we were coming home from vacation.

Since then, it has been 7 weeks since I have worn two shoes.  I have been stuck wearing an orthopedic walking cast on my left foot, due to a bruised bone and torn tendon.

Ergo, I cannot do ANYTHING that involves any sort of physical movement.  Normally, I would rejoice in this excuse, but I actually enjoy being with John and the dogs.  When we walk them, it is not really walking, more of we ride bikes and they run.  It is fun for them, and tiring!

However, since the accident, I cannot ride a bike.  I can barely walk!  So John has had to take care of the animals.

And that has been a little difficult.

Ginger, our 60-pound pit bull mix girl, is a little stubborn.  OK, a LOT stubborn. She will only run if she wants to.  Which is not all the time.  And not when she is running without her mommy.

Enter Yogi.  He is 80 pounds of dumb but sweet chocolate Labrador.  Who barks at the slightest provocation- a leaf falling, car backfiring (I admit, I jumped at that too), a cat running across the room, the doorbell ringing, etc.

He will run, but not without some warning that he is coming.

Seriously.

He is a LAB.

They are DUMB.

And he BARKS.

Get over it, I say.  These “Frustrated Neighbors” who do not like us running the dogs in “our neighborhood” (can we say exclusionists?) can kiss the fattest part of my ass.

I bet this letter came from the asshats whose devil spawn graffiti-ed our driveway.

Yes, children drew shit on my driveway.  It was in chalk, but it still pissed me off.

Granted, they may have been pissed that I took their skate board ramp and hid it for three days.  But the little vipers should not have left it in the middle of the fucking cul-de-sac ALL.  THE.  TIME.

It was an accident- or a theft- waiting to happen.

Being a non-confrontation type of person, I opted for the theft.

It was simple decision- take the ramp, hide it for a few days, then re-locate it behind a bush by the mailboxes.

The little shits got mad, though.

They told everyone WE stole their ramp.  Without any proof, we were convicted.

OK, so we did do it, but still, it hurt that they would automatically assume we did it.

So, I come home from work, park the car, change clothes, then park my ass on the couch.  John comes home a while later.

He asks me if I have seen the driveway.

No.  I barely leave the house unless it is going out to eat, to shop, or to work (and that is only because I have to go to work to get money to pay for shopping).

Come out and look at the driveway.

(Note: We have to park in the driveway instead of the garage because our garage is full of shit from my shopping trips).

The driveway is covered with drawings and writing.

In chalk.

With NAMES.

No self-respecting criminal would SIGN his work.  A dumbass one would.

Naturally, I assume it is the Satan-spawn across the street.

I was right.

The Dad, who is a huge asshat himself, comes over and laughs.

Oh yeah?  Let’s see how much you laugh when you have to bail them out of juvie in 10 years because they did something that you thought was funny.

He says the kids will be over to clean it up tomorrow morning.

Unacceptable, I tell him.  They need to clean it up NOW.

He said it is dark out, and getting colder, the kids have homework, and as a teacher, I should appreciate the need for kids to do their work.

I tell him as a teacher, I respect the need for consequences for behavior.  I would be happy to provide the hose, but his little spawn need to get over and scrub.  NOW.

He said no.  I said no wonder they are such shits, looks at their father.

Then he got pissed.

I got the hose, and sprayed off the work.  I may or may not have gotten him wet, but only after he attempted to set his large smelly foot on my property.

The ramp has not been left overnight in the cul-de-sac since.

That was about a year ago.

Or is it the dumbshits who let their little rat dog run around off leash?  Because if so, I would like for THEM to know that their little dog?  Belongs ON A FUCKING LEASH.  And my dog, who is about 10 times bigger, WILL BARK when approached by your pet rat masquerading as a dog.  And he will not stop.  Because your stupid rat is NOT leaving him ALONE.  And FYI- your own CHILD said that she does not like your dog because it is mean and it bites her.  Vanna, can we buy a clue, please?

Now we have the dog letter.

Since the coward who sent it did not have a return address on the envelope (yes I looked) and I did not have any samples of the neighbor’s handwriting to compare it to (yes, I checked), I am posting this reply to the “Frustrated Neighbors” on craigslist (once I figure out how to get an account for their forums board).  Where they can then kiss the fattest part of my double chins.

Dear Frustrated Neighbors who sent the letter to the “Barking Dog Owners” in Px [sic] AZ:

Since you were too cowardly to put a return address on your lovely letter to us, I am posting this here for you (and other neighbors) to read for your enjoyment.

Thank you so very much for your kind and thoughtful letter to us.  We know we have dogs – thank you for reminding us.  And thank you again for reminding us that they do bark (who knew!).

And we do have to walk them at 5:30 a.m!!  In Px!

Your letter made me upset.  At first.  Then I googled “Phoenix City Ordinance 8-2”.  I got redirected to adultfriendfinder.com, which encouraged me to view “more hot amateurs and sultry swingers.”  After THAT horror, I found the real site.  Yes, it does state that :

Sec. 8-2. Barking or howling dogs.

A. No person shall keep a dog within the City limits which is in the habit of barking or howling or disturbing the peace and quiet of any person within the City.

B. A person who violates this section is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor, however, the City Prosecutor may authorize the filing of certain cases or classes of cases as civil violations unless the person has previously been found responsible or guilty of violating this section.

C. A person found responsible for a civil violation of this section is subject to a sanction of not less than one hundred fifty dollars nor more than two thousand five hundred dollars.

D. In addition to any other penalty authorized by law, a person found guilty of a criminal violation of this section shall pay a fine of not less than one hundred fifty dollars.

What that translates to in English is that my dog needs to shut the hell up, or I will be found guilty of a crime and have to pay a fine that cost more than my first car.

Yes, I get that.

However, have you considered WHY my dog is barking?

Could it be that they are used to being run by two people, one of whom is currently in a walking cast and cannot ride a bike?

No, that thought would not cross your mind.  Apparently, your mind is occupied by incorrect abbreviations (See Px) and the use of too many exclamation points.

Also, the time you mentioned.  Yes, we do have to run them at 5:30 a.m.! (Again with the exclamation points!)

WHY so early?

We have JOBS.  That may be a four letter word to you (and the other neighbors) (!), however, we are the ones paying your welfare checks so you and your buddies can smoke and get top-tier cable, neither of which I can afford on my public servant salary.

Ergo, now, when I am running my dogs (at 5:30 a.m.! In Px!) you can kiss the fattest part of my ass.

Thanks for caring.

Your neighbor and owner of the barking dog.

P.S.  Bite me.

P. P. S. If my dogs were not so sweet, they would bite you first!

P. P. P. S. And I bet THAT little incident is one helluva bigger crime and fine than barking.

So yeah, I guess we do need to do something about Yogi and his barking. But I could not resist this reply.  So, if any of you have any suggestions on what to do for Yogi’s barking, I am open.  As for the letter reply, I think I’ve got that covered.

After I did post this on craigslist, I got a variety of responses.  Some people said I should be wary of pissing off my neighbors because my dogs could get hurt.  Yeah, right- they are inside sleeping 20 hours a day.  The four hours they are awake, they spend with us, constantly supervised.  And besides, no one gets close to them due to the barking.

Another person said that I am a bad dog owner, and living in a neighborhood full of crackheads and unemployed people does not tell good things about me.  I guess there was a global sense of humor failure on the pets forum today.

And yet another uninformed soul posted that they would not like to be my neighbor.  Guess what?  I do not want to be neighbors with someone who has no FUCKING SENSE OF HUMOR.

Although, I did go online and research anti-bark collars.  I found one on amazon.  It is the spray collar, without the scent of citronella, which dogs (and myself) do not like.  When the dog barks, he/she gets sprayed.  Apparently, dogs do not like this sort of thing.  This, in my humble opinion, is more humane than the shock collar.  However, if this spray thingy does not work, we will have to go to that next.  Because I really do not want to piss off my neighbors so badly that we have to move.  This please really is nice, and we just installed a TV on the wall, complete with surround sound.  Although a place with a bigger closet would be nice…

We got two of the collars.  Better hedge our bets.

And product reviews said it worked for dumb dogs, which Yogi certainly is.

Do they have one for humans, too?

John was asking.

Dinner and a show…?

July 14th, 2010

John and I had no idea that it was going to be such an interesting night.  It started off by us not having any groceries in the house (used up the grocery money going out to eat) so we ended up going out to eat (vicious cycle, you think?).

We went to our favorite little diner-type place.  It is a family owned restaurant in the local municipal airport, and we have been going there for quite some time.  We are such popular customers that the owners know us, and we run the facebook fan page.  Seriously.

The restaurant has a fan page.

And my husband, aka Geek in Residence, started it.

So as we were parking, we noticed the lot seemed fuller than usual. Since this was not the Wednesday night dinner buffet (aka dinner trough), or the weekend breakfast buffet (aka breakfast trough), we thought it a little unusual.  We should have gotten a clue when we saw all the political signs on the cars.  We did notice a funny bumper sticker, “Don’t tell Obama what comes after a trillion.”  It is from this sign that we deduced the Republicans must be in the house.  That, and the various NRA stickers plastered on cars as well.

So we walked into the restaurant, and into the chaos.  Normally, the place is pretty quiet and we just come in and sit down.  Tonight was a different story.  There were tables that were not cleared, and people milling all over the place.  The bullshit was flying pretty fast and furious in the dining room as well (which I am sure was in violation of the health code, or at least the moral code).  The lobby was decorated in assorted campaign posters, and John and I were both accosted by pollsters when we came in.  One of them asked how I was doing this evening, and I told them that I was hungry, henceforth cutting off all other political overtures.  John just walked on through, counting on me to clear the path with my mouth.

So we sat down, and noticed that the staff was running around like chickens with their heads cut off.  One was going in six different directions, and another had this rather homicidal grin plastered on his face.

We sat, and someone grabbed us two iced teas.  We looked around, and we saw large clusters of people, many of whom were well dressed and groomed.  I smelled politicians.  As we waited for our server, Chris (the one with the homicidal grin), to come over, John and I then conspired on ideas of what to tell the pollsters who were sure to accost us as we left.  Now, I am a proud US citizen, and am registered to vote.  John cannot vote, as he is not a citizen.  Relax, he is a legal resident alien- he pays taxes, works, and is an overall productive citizen- he just can’t vote, serve on a jury, or be President (thank God).

Back to our excuses.  John’s was that he was waiting on the results of his deportation hearing, and his civil liberties have not yet been restored.  My excuse was going to be that my rights were pending the outcome of my assault case (if anyone asked, I was going to say that someone had come between me and my coffee).

We giggled over those for a little while, and watched the politicians ooze their way around the room.  I swear, there was so much oil in this place, you could use it to squeeze a Cadillac into a doghouse.

It is then that our server came over.  He was wearing that psychotic grin because he was stressed out.  He was running ragged, and was trying to train a new server to boot.  Poor guy.  He took our orders, and ran off again, leaving John and me unsupervised (bad idea, looking back).

Left to our own devices, John and I were observing the meeting.  We overhead that the meeting was a congressional district one, and it was indeed the Republicans.  We saw the meeting start- they said the pledge of allegiance, of course.  Then it was down to business.  I guess they save the pledge to the NRA and the ritualistic sacrifice of the Democrat for more private meetings.

As the business was conducted, we heard lots of applause and some random cheering.  I was wondering if they were giving out doorprizes.  There was even someone filming the meeting!  John and I were wondering if someone famous was going to be there, or maybe they were just waiting for the sacrifice.

So as we were dining, and enjoying the political show, another began out in the main room of the restaurant.  A family was seated at a large table- a mom-type person, a dad-type person, and two small children-type people.  Both of the children types were screaming like sirens.  The mom-type was looking around the room, shaking her head, and smiling.  In other words, she was not doing a DAMN thing and letting her spawn holler their way through my dinner.  Normally, I have no issue with kids, but when they piss me off, I start off with the dirty looks, then I revert to being my default mode, which is bitch.

Just before going to bitch gear, I noticed how one of the children was screaming.  He lying on a bench made of two chairs pushed together, with his feet kicked out and crossed out at the ankles.  His hands were crossed behind his head, looking for all the world like a relaxed kid, watching TV at home.  Instead of being quiet, though, this little shit was screaming.

For no apparent reason.

And his little brother in the high chair was matching him note for note.

And the fucktard mother was doing nothing except looking around and smiling, as if to say, “Aren’t they cute.”

I came to the conclusion that they must be Democrats, screaming because they are not getting their way and looking to someone to do everything for them.

After I composed myself (I erupted in a giggle fit), the owner came over to sit with us for a little while.  We chit chatted, and shared our observations about the politicians, pollsters, and life in general.  Another customer asked why she was not in the room with all the politicians, and she gave an awesome answer.  She mentioned that if you scratch chicken shit, it smells like chicken shit.  Overall, a great reason for staying the hell away from all the chicken shit that was oozing around in the banquet room.

The customers at the other table and I got to talking, and I mentioned about the ritual Democrat sacrifice that took place at the beginning of the meeting.  The man stated that he would not be having the chicken.  My reply was that it was no coincidence that the special tonight was meatloaf so the chicken should be OK.

We laughed some more, and then it was back to the people watching.  It was interesting watching how the people were dressed at this meeting. There was one older man who was wearing Sansabelt slacks, with a belt.  And the pants were pulled up clear to his armpits.  His teeth were also very large, and he liked to smile.  He gave the impression of a horse, wearing slacks.  Did these republicans not get the memo that the symbol for the party is an elephant?

While we were digesting (and digressing) we over head the new server complaining about how mean the owner’s son has been to her.  Now George is a nice guy, but he IS a guy.  And he is 24, making his mental age about half that.  So George can be a little mischievous when it comes to breaking in new servers.  This time, he was harassing the new girl about her most recent question of what name should she put on the time card.  Now, once explained, her question had a little more validity, but coming into the middle of the conversation, it made us wonder about her intelligence level.  Then George told us about the stunt he pulled on the poor girl.  He made her empty the hot water from the coffee pots.

Normally this would seem like a pretty regular thing to do at home.  However, for those of you who have never worked in a commercial restaurant, the water supply is hooked up to the coffee pots, so there is a constant supply of water to the pots.  Therefore, you do not need to empty the hot water.  This poor new server emptied four pots out of hot water before she smelled the rat.  This was not as bad as the last new guy, who jousted at this windmill for an hour until the owner stopped him.

John and I were next in the intelligence questioning category.  Our restaurant has a dessert case, and it is like food pornography.  It is always filled to the brim with delicious homemade goodies.  John and I thought we saw brownies in it.  We asked for a brownie for our dessert.  Chris, our poor server, came back to us with the homicidal grin in place.  There are no brownies.  We insisted there were, and he said there were not.  He brought over a tray of yellow cake slices, which looked like brownies, and made us think they were brownies, but were indeed not brownies.  It was the case of the disappearing dessert, or maybe the dessert dumbasses.

We had cake, with a side of Marie Antoinette.

While the dessert debacle took place, the meeting was still going on.  Me being me, I was thinking up ways to disrupt it.  We asked Chris if the Democrats had met here at any point.  He said no.  We were thinking about how funny it would be to walk in the middle of the meeting (after one of the bouts of seemingly random applause) and point at someone and shout, “We saw you at the Democrat meeting last week!”

At this point, we figured everyone would turn around, whip out their previously concealed weapons (remember the NRA bumper stickers) and assault the pseudo-Democrat on his way out the door.

It is at this time (after we scared our server off AGAIN for me being in yet another giggle fit) we decided that we had worn out our welcome and needed to get home.

Forget Monday night football.  I’m doing dinner at the airport!!!

Holy Shit! Snakeinmypool!

July 14th, 2010

Everyone is entitles to a few phobias.  I have a few, and my husband (and quite a few of my family and so-called friends) thinks they are ridiculous.  However, the one morning two of my phobias collided in a most unpleasant manner, I was curled up on the couch in a fetal position, barely refraining from screaming.

It started out as an innocuous summer Monday morning.  John and I ran the pups, and then he went to do some maintenance pool keeping.  Since I am not one to have a hand with chemicals and water, I elected to supervise.  John lifted up the pool filter cover, and saw a snake.  There was a snake in my pool filter.

A snake.

In

My

Snakeinmypool!

And it was alive.

There was a LIVE snakeinmypool.

I ran screaming into the house, leaving my brave and snake-phobia-free husband to deal with it.

Granted, it was a small snake, but it was a SNAKE.  In my POOL.  SNAKEINMYPOOL!

John said that he was just going to lift it out with the strainer and put it in the bushes.

OH HELL to the power of NO.

There will be no going from snakeinmypool to snakeinmyyard.

Even though I do love animals, I love the cute, furry, cuddly ones- not snakeinmypool.

I convinced him (read threatened) to put the snakeinmypool over the back fence, which runs alongside the frontage road of a freeway.

Which he did.  Thankfully.

However, the snakeinmypool will have me checking the filters before I get in.

In addition to the other precaution I take when I get in the pool.
I did mention I had two related phobias of the pool.  No, they are not rational ones, such as of the depth or the strainers on the ground.

My second phobia is of the pool creeper.  You know the thing that is connected to the hose that crawls around the bottom surface of the pool when the pump is on?  That thing.  I am afraid of that thing.

I do not know when or why this fear started, but I cannot get into ANY pool when the creeper is running.  Now I did not have a pool as a kid, so it could not have stemmed from some sort of backyard creeper phobia.  Luckily, I live in Arizona, where every other house has a pool, and our neighbors were cool enough to share theirs.  Thankfully, they did not have a pool creeper, so it could not have come from that.  It may have come from a party one time where not only there was a free-roaming pool creeper, there were the snake-like things on the bottom of the pool that constantly whipped around, sweeping the bottom of the pool.  That freaked me out, and I did not go into the pool.  And before I get into my own pool, I have to pull it to the side and secure it so it will not randomly creep off on its own.

That is where the pool creeper and snake phobia fears are related.  This morning, when John found the snakeinmypool, the creeper was running.  In my irrationality, I was convinced that one was related to the other.

Now that I think about it, in a somewhat more rational state of mind, I think the pool creeper reminds me of a snake, with it weird movements and sneaky, creepy locations.  Ergo, the snakes and pool creepers, to my id (or some other part of my mind- I think I slept through that day in psych 101) are one in the same.

My husband does not understand.  As we were making lunch, I was still freaking out over snakeinmypool.  He started to dance, saying it sounded like a beat to a song.  He even mocked me, saying that it was a little harmless snake, most likely more afraid of me than I was of it.

I doubt it.

Although I can now say that I have a really cool sounding phobia: Ophidiophobia.

My other really irrational phobia is of clowns.  They are just creepy.

One time, I worked for a company that had a booth at a health fair.  In order to attract people to the booth, they hired one of my fellow employees to dress up as a clown.  Granted, I knew the person behind the greasepaint and goofy clothes, and still kept my distance most of the day.  When John and I went on a cruise, I kept a wary eye on the ship’s mascot, some red v-shaped thing.  You never know where they will pop up and surprise you.  I also will not go to children’s birthday parties if there are clowns, nor will I ever hire any for my own children.

I do not understand my fear for clowns, but I do know that there are a lot of other people out there with the same fear.  There are support groups on the Internet, and even an “I Hate Clowns” page on facebook.  After googling the phrase “fear of clowns”, this is what popped on Wikipedia, “Coulrophobia is abnormal or exaggerated fear of clowns.”

Now, if a clown ever shows up carrying a pool creeper in one hand and a snake in the other, I think I will run screaming from the room and curl up on my bed in the fetal position.