Thursday, April 14, 2011

Old Man and the See

On a drive earlier this week in my white Buick Regal, blasting NPR with my dog Ziggy Stardust at my side--I had a sudden revelation.

I am an old man.

I turned to Ziggy and asked him if this was true, and he said what I assumed to be "yep". I shrugged and took a bite of my tuna fish sandwich. Then started thinking about all the chores I needed to do on the weekend, and how gosh darn short the days seemed to be getting.

"Dagnabbit!" I said to Ziggy. "Things are getting to me lately. Y'know what I mean?" He didn't. Or at least he pretended not to, and started chewing his own foot. But I kept right on thinking about this and that. And this and that really started to get me steamed.

I thought about how the recycling truck had forgotten to come down our street this week and now we will have to smush down the contents of the already-full barrel in order to fit next week's containers. Ugh, how inconvenient!! I remembered how I had forgotten to shut off the heater for the past THREE NIGHTS IN A ROW. And now because of that, my sinuses were dry. I thought about how much I hated the phrase "Poet Laureate" and that I had already seen it used several times this month. I thought about how much I despise Charlie Sheen; but how I despise his live show audience members even more! I thought: if I were a courageous French girl wearing red lipstick, I would lock the doors of the theater during one of his shows and set fire to the whole building thus ridding the world of a generation of idiots and changing the course of history for the better (Inglorious Basterds 2).

Thoughts kept coming. I muttered to myself about the annoying amount of animated films in theaters these days. And how gasoline used to be the same price whether you bought it with cash or credit card. I thought about how facebook used to be JOKES GALORE; and now it's just a place to fund-raise for yourself, dodge spam disguised as fun quizzes, and promote one's own self-indulgent blog (!!!!!!!!!)

And there was much, much more to grit my teeth at, but I was having a tough time concentrating due to the racket squawking from my speakers. "Groan," I grumbled to Ziggy, "I am going to tear my own ears off and make a soup out of them if I hear another yapping word!" (I was referring to the vocal tone of the newscasters on NPR.) Lately, they had really been getting on my last nerve. All I want to hear is the news! Can't a person get informed anymore without having to tolerate whistling "S"s and over-enunciated vowels? Not to mention, each and every broadcaster sounds like she/he was just in the middle of swallowing something--when suddenly a red "On Air" sign lit up above them and they immediately began spewing the news. Pretending, unsuccessfully, not to have a full mouth. While we on the receiving end are forced to listen to world issues filtered through an unswallowed ball of mashed potatoes or candy corn. Or BOTH.**

(**A favorite concoction of NPR announcers, this treat is often available in the studio vending machines and is known around the Public Radio sector as A Mashie Home Cornpanion.)

In a hasty rage I changed the station and landed on a Neil Young song. Lucky find. And on the first try! I sipped my ginger ale and sang at the top of my lungs about looking for a heart of gold as I pulled up to a red stoplight. Which took at least four minutes to change! When the light finally did turn green, I immediately honked at the truck in front of me. MOVE!! Why does no one pay attention? Probably texting. Sheesh.

I was about to honk again when I noticed the traffic was stopped for a good reason: a blind man in his late 70's with a red-tipped cane was crossing the street.

He took lots of small steps. So many. I watched every one. In fact, all the non-dead cells in my brain were then focused on him. How long had he been blind? Was he lost or did he cross this street every day? Did he have someone to take care of him? Is he mad that he can't hear an approaching Prius? Where was he going? Does he wonder why people make such a big deal about HD? Is he so lonely that it hurts in his bones?

Many moments later he was across. But I continued to watch him small-step down the sidewalk as Neil Young's voice in the background sang, "...and I'm gettin' old".

And suddenly I was in tears. Crying, crying, crying. Down my face, off my chin, onto my chest. Even the honk of the car behind me could not shock me into stopping. Ziggy was worried and decided to lean right against my shoulder for a little while. "I was wrong, Ziggy!" I sobbed. I'm not old! I have lots of life to live and I really have nothing to complain about! What is wrong with me??! My life is great. For one thing, I can SEE!!! I should wake up thankful everyday for that alone!

Proud of my new "half-full glass" outlook on life; I wiped my wet cheeks, turned off the radio and rolled down my window. Who needs music?! For goodness sake, I can just listen to the sound of the world around me.

I pulled into my neighborhood and down my street, sporting a huge smile. I love where I live! And golly gee I am happy to be returning home! And what a great day! Another miraculous sun sets on another splendid horizon!

Once home, Ziggy and I hopped out of the car with springs in our steps and wags in our tails and skipped up the driveway. On our way by the mailbox I stopped to peek inside.

"Why look Ziggy, I got a letter! How exciting. I wonder who it's fro--"  I didn't need to finish the question. It only takes me a split second to read a return address. I'm no dummy.

"The Internal Revenue Service?" Ziggy cocked his head to the side and I opened the letter and scanned the info.

"Well, well, well Ziggy, isn't this just the most interesting news? It seems I am being audited. And in addition to that, I owe $3,000 dollars in back taxes. My...goodness."

My half-full glass immediately tipped over. Spilled. Rolled off the table. And shattered on the floor.


Friday, April 1, 2011

Prank You Notes

Boy oh boy, today is gonna be a great day! Why? Because, silly heads, it is my most favorite day of the year! The one day that it is completely okay to lie at someone's face and then when they believe the lie you just told, you get to laugh at them! Hard. For a long time. Then you get to call them an idiot. And embarrass them! Plus, you can just keep laughing and never feel bad about it because it is a world-endorsed holiday. It is "a day which tolerates practical jokes and general foolishness," says Wikipedia. And as always, Wikipedia is right. For today is...Secretary's Day!

 April Fools! (It's April Fools' Day.)

And boy oh boy, have I got some good general foolishness to spread around this year.

First thing on the agenda -- I am going to give out little boxes that look like "presents" to all the individuals I come in contact with. And when each individual asks me what's inside, I will say, "Well I'll tell you one thing, it is NOT a bomb. I swear on the grave of the recently-deceased-turtle-at-my-office this is not a bomb. It is a present tied with a pretty bow. Go ahead, open it." And when they do, it explodes and black bomb dust gets on their face and they run off crying to Papa Smurf because IT WAS A BOMB!!!! HAAAHAHAAAAAAA! Funny stuff. Funny. Funny.

Another "good one" I plan on pulling off is writing a false status update on the ol' FB. Yeah, you heard me. Something COMPLETELY UNTRUE. Hehehe. For example, I might write, "Oh man, just ate chili cheese fries from Del Taco." (Psst...I DIDN'T!!) Or I might post something like, "Hey does anyone want an Ikea dresser? It's practically new. But you have to find a way to come and pick it up cuz I don't have a truck or anything." (Shhh, hehehe...totally wrong! My husband HAS A TRUCK!! Sneaky prank-faced move!) Or I could even pull off the ultimate stunt: changing my profile picture to a photo of me with a crazy blue wig on. And underneath is the caption: "New Haircut." (HA! Not really my hair!!!)

Some other ideas I have bouncing around are:

1)  Sending a mass email to everyone I know, asking for money to start a new theater company! That's funny because I once did that for reals--but this time it's fake. Get it?

2)  Telling everyone in the office that the office turtle is dead. But he's just sleeping!
      R.I.P. Short Stack, the "office turtle". March 28, 2011

3)  Giving my vegetarian friend a hamburger and saying it's made of soy meat. Then after they eat it all I tell them the truth :) hi-LARIOUS.

4)  Asking someone for money to ride the bus, and then using that bus money to buy methamphetamine. (Can't take all the credit for that one. Got the idea from some pretty funny junkies that hang around a quaint/ramshackle/bulletproof glass-encased liquor store in San Pedro (aka Charles Bukowskitown).

Those are some good funnies, huh? You think I am the ultimate prankster right now, don't you? Well I am pretty good that's for sure. But don't order me an Oscar-esque, plastic trophy engraved "Best Supporting Pranktor" just yet. I have also been on the receiving end of many a masterful April Fool practical joke in my day. And I have to give it to these crafty fellows. They got me good!

The best example I can give of a real April Fools' master at work was a certain ADHD-ravaged, wizard of a boy from my second grade class. This young genius stacked 5 lunch pails on top of each other against a brick wall and told me to stand on them. He told me to look over the wall and check if an ice cream truck was there. Well I, being a bit of a genius myself, quickly obliged. Ice cream!!! So close to school??!! This I gotta see. But once atop the tin tower, I immediately noticed that there was (of course) no ice cream truck to be seen. And before I could let the news be known to the other kids, I felt an ADHD foot-filled shoe kick me in the butt. Both the lunch pails and I toppled into a heap, crying. (yes the lunch pails were crying too!) As I hobbled away to the nurse's office on what I would soon discover to be a cracked tailbone, I heard an ADHD-powered tongue scream, "April Fools'!!!". Touché, young man. Touché.

Fortunately for the joy of humans everywhere, jokes like these are not reserved for adolescent boys under the age of twelve. Nope. There are lots of people who keep right on pranking each and every April 1st--long after their thirteenth birthday and well into their Lexus buying, pumpkin ravioli eating, Dave n Busters happy-hour drinking, MMA watching, art-opening attending, Netflix streaming, youtube sketch comedy making, bar method attending, serious adult days. Why, personal examples from the past five years alone are hard to count.

There was the time one of my customers at a restaurant wrote $1,000,000 into the tip line of their credit card receipt and then crossed it out and noted "April Fools!" But then didn't write an amended, real amount. That was pretty darn funny. And the instance where someone handed me a beer they had spit in. The time a friend called pretending to be a commercial agent that wanted to sign me. Oh, and the time my coworkers hid my wallet so that I thought it was stolen.

And even as recently as this morning, this VERY April Fools' Day, I was pranked by a fake billboard on the side of the highway promoting a phony show that supposedly stars Toni Collette with a gap in her teeth, wearing funny hats and doing different silly voices--pretending to have super stereotypical, mulit-personalities. HA! (But I'm no dummy. I caught on to this joke right away. They couldn't fool me! No one would watch such a stupid show. NO ONE. Nice try, "Showtime".)

Wikipedia states that April Fools' Day has been around since Chaucer's era, or perhaps before. That's a long time! Longer than Secretary's Administrative Professionals Day even! This is VERY good news for me and all the rest of you April Fools' Day enthusiasts. Cuz it sure as heck seems like this day is here to stay. And thank goodness! Because boy oh boy, nothing is funnier than a day full of blatant lying -- sending our thin layer of trust in others and that deep-down need to believe that people are essentially good and well-meaning into a complete tailspin. HHEEEEEHHHEEEEHAHAAAHAAAA!!! I'm LOLing so hard I'm afraid I'll puke. I wish this day would never end!***   

***April Fools!! (This day should be punched in the face. Worst day of the year.)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Dr. Strangecandy or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Steal the...candy.

When I traveled around Europe with my brother Mike (shout out--hey Mike!) at the age of 21, I kept a strict and detailed diary. As I documented each day sentence by sentence, I became increasingly sure that the diary and all its Euro-discovery-fueled wisdom would someday be a best seller. Or in the least it would captivate my immediate family as I, nightly, read aloud gripping passages involving flower covered bridges. And peasants selling geese and rosaries in front of Gothic cathedrals.

So, a couple weeks after my return to the states I opened said diary to re-read my own masterpiece before it went onto publication. Unfortunately it turned out to be a bit less gripping than I first thought. SO less gripping, in fact, that I tore it to pieces. And then distributed those pieces into different trash cans throughout my neighborhood. It was that bad. BAD. The fundamental problem was this: the whole journal was about things I had eaten on the trip. Every page!

The story about the flower-covered bridge? That was actually about how good Stracciatella Gelato tasted while crossing it. The rosary and goose seller? That was a story about how hard it was to push by her on my way to the cheese-on-a-stick cart. And every tale involving a Gothic cathedral dedicated one or two sentences to cathedral design--and nine paragraphs to the design of the pastry counter in the cafe next door.

My point, dear friends, is that I often accidentally find myself writing about food. And today is no exception.

Chapter One: CANDY (then)
I used to love candy more than anything ever. And my addiction to it could only be compared to that of a crack addict. (My grand, generalizing, stereotypical assumptions here about crack addicts have little to do with fact and mostly to do with events depicted in Bad Lieutenant.) I use this crack comparison because--like crack--I needed it all the time and it was the reason behind almost all of my early criminal activity. Examples? But of course! Here you are:

1) Early on in my existence, my father was a So-And-So at the company that owned 7-11. Therefore little ol' me was privy to some top secret corporate information that most of the public knew nothing about: THE SECRET CANDY ROOM AT CORPORATE HEADQUARTERS! Yes. Candy Room. Inside contained nothing but a candy display shelf, exactly like the ones in 7-11. And full of all the same candy. Each time we went to visit my dad at his office, he would take us in and tell us to pick out one treat. I always picked out one Whatchamacalit. And I also always picked out two Peanut Butter Twix and stuffed them into my pockets and picked out one handful of Fireballs and jammed them into my Little Twin Star purse. Every time! And I got away with it. Which led me to believe I always could.

2) Years and stuff happened, blah, blah, blah. No specifics available.

3) At some point after my senior year of high school I told myself that I needed to lose weight. But being the anti-conventionalist I was and still am, I decided that sensible run-of-the-mill dieting was not for me. And I devised my own fool-proof way to shed pounds. The regimen was simple: Do not exceed 10 grams of fat a day. That was the only rule. It was quite a straightforward diet, yet it went through many trial and error periods until finally emerging as something I now call the "Sour Gummy Worms and Diet Coke diet".

(You see, sour gummy worms have very little fat in them. And Diet Coke has none. So weight loss and health would obviously go hand-in-hand with this combo. Hand. In. Hand.) 

Unfortunately, this pricey diet coincided with a "low funds" period in my life. And, as many of you know all too well, Trolli Brite Crawlers can run you upwards of $2.35 per bag. Multiply that by 4 bags a day and you'd better have yourself a $40K a year job in order to keep your stomach full. Well, I didn't have a $40K job. I worked at Bobby McGee's Restaurant as a Scarlett O'Hara-esque, costumed hostess named "Southern Comfort". And believe me when I tell you -- the gig did not pay $40K.

Thus began my mid 90's reign of shoplifting terror unleashed upon all North Orange County Rite Aids. I am not proud of this. And I reserve the right to withhold further details of the spree. But as your heads are undoubtedly picturing right now -- it wasn't pretty. (And neither was my skin. Turns out-- an all sugar, all chemical diet really incites the acne. Words of warning from the ex-acne-surrounded mouth of someone who knows.)

Chapter Two -- The Final Chapter: CANDY (now)
Here (finally!) is where this blog post becomes relevant to today.

Currently, I am in charge of the candy dish at work. This is one of my many important daily duties, if not the most important. Sounds like a sweet deal, huh? (Intentional Pun! Zing!) Well, don't jump to conclusions because this task has turned out to be somewhat of a candy-ruiner for me. The pure routine of it alone has proven to be a turn off. Whatever image my mind used to conjure up for "candy" has completely morphed into looking like "office supplies". And then there are the drooling faces that begin to lurk about as the fill-time draws near..

When my predecessor was training me for the job, I wondered why she emphasized the importance of only filling the dish once a day. "ONLY FILL THIS DISH ONCE A DAY," she said with wild eyes that had seen too much, "ONCE. That's it. Just once. No matter how much they beg." I shrugged and said, "sure". Assuming --as I usually like to assume-- that people are crazy and say crazy things that I should just ignore.

But she was oh so right! Each day when the second hand tick-tocks its way around and slaps 1:30pm, "candy time" arrives. Methodically I open the locked cabinet (to which I am the only key holder) and pull out a mixed bag of fun size stupid candy and fill up the ugly dish. And undoubtedly the last Musketeer is still hitting the bowl when the first sneaky taker pops out from around the corner. Then another. Another. And another.

"Oooh! Wow, looks like I happened by at just the right time!"
 "Oh Candy!"
"I really shouldn't, but since it's Tuesday..."
"Hey! You have Snickers today. My favorite, guess I have to!"
"My diet starts tomorrow. LOL!"
"I really shouldn't, but since it's Wednesday..."

And so on. All day. Until there is nothing left but blue jolly ranchers that have adhered themselves to the bottom due to melting, and of course the poisonous barf-inducing Banana Laffy Taffys that are notoriously left behind.***

All of this would be so much more tolerable if these folks would just own up to the fact that they eat lots of candy. If only they would walk up to the dish proudly and proclaim, "now is the time I eat my candy. I do this everyday. And I am not ashamed of it!" I would have so much more respect for that.

Unfortunately that is not the way things are. No one owns up to their addiction. And instead of feeling like a professional respected pharmacist, dutifully distributing to people the antidote for a bad day that they so deserve-- I am a cloaked crack dealer waiting for my pathetic weirdos to emerge from the shadows mumbling/begging for a taste with fistfuls of wadded up dollars.

And then I think back to my youth and note that I should keep my judgments to myself. Because I too was once just like them: a shame-filled criminal and repeat offender just trying to get my fix.

***Little known fact -- When investigating the disappearance of the Roanoke colonists, British and Spanish investigators found nothing but some stones with writing depicting the troubles of the colonists, and a pile of Banana Laffy Taffys with a sign on top saying "Gross".

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Default of Me

A few years back I did something pretty dumb. Something I am kicking myself for right about now. And since you are all my dear friends, I guess I can share with you the tale of my stupidity.

One partly-cloudy day in September, I walked into Fort Knox with an empty cardboard box and asked to borrow $98,000. The clerk (I believe his name was Clerk Knox CPA) said, "Why yes of course! Right this way, young miss."

I followed him down a gold brick hallway and into a room containing one of the world's largest money machines. 

"This makes money," Clerk Knox said. "Take some!"

I held my empty cardboard box up to a part of the machine labeled "cardboard box goes here". Immediately, fresh money started shooting out. 

"Too much!" I shouted. "Turn off this machine, sirs! I have all I can carry." 

After signing my name on a line that came at the end of some words, I attended a brief wine and cheese reception held in my honor. I didn't stay long, and quickly found myself giving goodbyes all around to the good, hard working execs of our country's best financial institutions. Then I skipped out into the now non-cloudy September air. 

"What a great day," I thought as I made my way to the bridge at the edge of town. "Yup, great day. Well, that's enough blabber about the day--there's the bridge!!" 

I ran as fast as a person with a lid-less box of money can run. And reached the bridge without spilling one bill.

Once there, I looked over the side. 

"Perfect!" I screamed to no one. "Watch what I'm gonna do next!" I also said that to no one.  

I immediately turned over the box and dumped all the money into the murky waters below. Smiling, I watched as two fish took two big bites out of the faces of two Benjamins Franklin. And I waved/blew kisses to the rest of the pieces as they floated away to oblivion. 

Satisfied, I headed home to get ready for bed. Thinking the whole time, "What a great decision I made! Borrowing money and throwing it away was the greatest accomplishment of my life. I am going to sleep better than I ever have. And tomorrow I will wake up successful and rich!"

"Hmm...what should I do first?! I know! I will do a play in the center of town. And everyone will applaud me. I'll pose for autographed photo ops and sign each one with: Much Love, From A Rich and Successful Person. And then, after eating fancy chicken pot pies until I puke (that's what rich people do), I will swing by good ol' Fort Knox and pay them back every penny I borrowed plus interest! Gooood Night!!"

Okay so you probably just now called me a liar. Because, as you may have guessed with your smart brains...that story wasn't true (except for the part about doing a play). But I promise I had no malicious purpose for misleading you, my good buddies.  It was merely a tricky way of getting you to read a cautionary tale. Which you otherwise might not have read because most cautionary tales are BORING (example: Young Goodman Brown). But some--well-placed in front of the right eyes at the right time--can be quite gripping and effective (example: Gremlins).

There IS a timely reason for my caution-y tale telling. Today, after years of hiding in plain sight from scary people who hold a bloody note over my head...I started to repay my graduate school student loans. Loans that I will be repaying for the rest of my life.

And it's not the realization that I will be paying them forever that has caused my utter terror and delirium today. It is the fact that somehow, I spent almost $100,000 without even noticing. It's like I fell asleep and while I slept, the loans that once looked so appealing and harmless have now multiplied, hatched and are running crazy in my town movie theater on Christmas and they will never be contained!

The worst part is I have nothing to show for it save a dwindling elitist attitude that I am somehow awesome because I paid lots of money to learn. Money that would have been SO much better spent if I had carried it around in a box and thrown it into some murky waters. At least then I would have been able to touch it and see it for a little while before it was gone. At least then, when people would pass me on the street they would whisper, "There she is!! The girl that threw a box of money in the river! And I think she also won a chicken pot pie eating contest!"  Then I would at least be known for accomplishing something.

But as it stands, the only existing accomplishment that came from the money I owe is my diploma. Which right now lies locked in a damp, university basement filing cabinet. Awaiting the $25 processing/shipping fee I was never quite able to afford.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Oscar the Grouch

Here come the Academy Awards!! This weekend. Counting-down the hours, are you? Printing out your homemade ballots on your dot matrix printers and sharpening a wicker basket full of golf pencils? Stirring the punch and frosting the mini cupcakes?? Popping the antidepressants and doing the shots of Popov? Slitting your wrists and burning a pile of your old head shots? Screaming out the window, "I was the best I tell you, THE BEST!! And look at me now!! LOOK AT ME!!! I smell like a mediocre biweekly direct deposit and I feel like a sack of potatoes with a wig on"??

Well join the club. That's what ALL of us do on Oscar week. Cuz when it comes to shoving the fame, success and beauty of unattainable goals into our smushy faces, no one does it better than the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (Sciences?! I just now decided that is weird).

My resentment/jealousy for these awards has long been a part of my inner workings. For instance, my Barbies** used to get dressed up to attend the awards every year. Because, astonishingly, at least one of them was always nominated! Actress roommates--who, between the two of them, never missed a nomination for 6 years straight?!  An unprecedented achievement to say the least. The only catch was (and here is where my resentment showed its ugly head) they never made it to the awards. One would always have sex with lie naked next to the limo driver minutes before they were supposed to leave! And the other would be jealous because she liked the limo driver too! And they would rip each others' Valentinos to shreds! And go to bed in a huff! But this was somehow a much more satisfactory end to the evening for me than if they had actually gone.

My clear issue was this: I didn't want to see my Barbies win instead of me. Even now, some version of that thought still lingers with me. Each year I (deep-down) think, "If someone is going to win that fancy award, why can't it be me?" And this absurd sentiment, I know for a fact, is shared across the board by my fellow longing-to-be-an-actor-of-the-A-list-type friends.

Ridiculous? Absolutely! Because...
A) I am not in a movie this year. Nor have I been in one prior to this year. And...
B) I am a regular person. Chubby, blemished, and just like the 1 billion other watchers who are sitting at home on their couch anonymously. All of us yelling at the TV. Calling perfect people "ugly", one-of-a-kind couture, "unflattering"  and decent, well-deserved nominations, "bullshit!".

[Hmmm. It seems that the mere topic of these awards is souring my disposition greatly. I just re-read this post and got the chills at how unrecognizably bitter and annoyingly actor-y I sound. But it's too late to turn back. So if you have made it this far in your reading, congratulations! You are almost through.]

Perhaps this year, instead of watching, I should rip my own Valentino and send myself to bed in a huff. Because when I DON'T watch--I feel like a perfectly happy, lucky, successful person with an interesting life. But when I DO, I feel like I am actually just watching life carve a notch on its bedpost-- indicating it has once again laid naked next to f#%ked me.

**Have I mentioned my Barbies before? I believe I have. I blame those b#%ches for a lot of my issues.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Flight of the Navigator

So I have been gone a few months from the earth blog city. And some things have happened. Don't worry, I won't recap them here***. I will spare you a long list of boring nonsense that is my everyday life. To tell you the truth, surprisingly few notable happenings happened. Nothing I've felt compelled to tell you about. But I realized this morning in the shower (where all my realizing is done) that I am BORED. And the only cure for the boredom is typing out my thoughts into a blank text-box and sending it out for people to read or not read.

That's enough prologue. Here's something I have thought about of late...

Almost three times a week I drive by a sign on Western Avenue near my San Pedro home (also near the San Pedro home of the late Charles Bukowski, but now I'm just bragging). The sign is a white poster board that has the phrase, "Computer Classes" written crooked across the board in black sharpie. The first time I saw it, I laughed out loud at the irony--because oh man-- I love me some good irony. I immediately decided that when I drove by it the next time, I would snap a pic. I thought this would make one heck of a facebook post! Can you imagine?!! That funny sign, with a clever caption underneath?!! Something like: "I guess 'making a sign on a computer' is not one of the topics covered in this class". Or...or...hmm...that is the only one I can think of right now. But anyway, it would have gotten "likes" well into the double digits, that's for sure.

The next time I drove by, I readied my camera to get the sign. However, the signal turned green before I could take the picture. Bummer. But I got another good laugh at it. Still funny.

The next time, I was in the passenger seat. So I couldn't miss. But NO! It was the wrong time of day and the sun was glaring right on it! The only thing my camera caught was a flash of sunlight. Dumb.

The next time my camera was out of batteries. And the next time there was a huge truck blocking my view. And then finally, I just stopped finding it that amusing anymore. It wasn't that great of a sign after all. It was only just the slightest bit ironic. Eh. I decided it wasn't worth a post or a picture. And I let the idea drop.

But then, two days ago, I drove by and the sign was gone. The thought immediately crossed my mind that I had missed my chance to take that computer class a picture of something that would never be replicated again. Something I had discovered and could have shown to the world for the purpose of making it the butt of a joke. And I just let it slip through my fingers. Eh.

But as I kept driving (ok, not ALL of my realizing is done in the shower. Some is done in the car.) I started to feel a little sick to my stomach. A lot of time had gone by. LOTS of time since I saw that sign for the first time. Enough time for someone to set up a class; advertise; have people drive by and notice and then ask their girlfriend "hey, should I take that?" and their girlfriend says, "sure"; so they enroll; the class begins; the class continues with quizzes and homework; the students study for the final; they pass or don't; certificates and handshakes all around; then the lights turn out for the last time as the teacher whispers to an empty classroom, "We did it again, computers. Until next time my little machines. Until next time."

All that time had gone by and I was still the same. Still driving on Western, coming from and going to the same places. Eating the same spaghetti/taco/spinach & chicken/frozen pizza dinner rotation I did every week. Looking at the same websites everyday at work. Waking up at the same time, brushing my teeth with the same toothpaste, blah blah blah blah. At any rate these thoughts started to make me sad. Really sad. And I didn't like it one bit.

So today's post, my little machines, has a bit of a moral or lesson or something stupid like that. And here it is: I am not going to sit lamely by and watch the world change and computer classes happen while I stay the same lazy person who doesn't even have the gumption to take a picture of things and make fun of them while I still can! So that is what this blog is for.

And that is why the blog is back. The end.

*** I will recap them HERE:
  1. Pregnant? 
  2. Yep, Pregnant!
  3. Realized going to Vegas on Halloween while pregnant is actually my hell.
  4. I thought about getting a Christmas tree. Then thought about how troublesome it was to get the ornaments down, only to have to put them away 3 weeks later. Decided not to get a tree after all.
  5. I thought about setting up my Nativity Scene. But then I started watching an episode of the Wire and completely forgot about it.
  6. Black mold scare at the office.
  7. Changed my name at the Social Security office. Found out that Chubby Checker is the celebrity spokesman for the Social Security Admin.
  8. Ate lots of bean and cheese burritos.
  9. Got mad about some Republican shenanigans 
  10. Black mold scare at the office was a false alarm
  11. Stared at Facebook
  12. Watched "The Kids Are Alright" and then shrugged and said, "eh"
  13. Got told by the doc that I have gained too much weight
  14. Ate a bean burrito and cried
  15. "Strange Dust" scare at the office
  16. Watched the Superbowl with indifference
  17. Got flowers on Valentines day from my husband and bragged about it on Facebook
  18. Procrastinated reading book for my book club so I could finish watching the final season of The Wire 
  19. Decided it was time to write my blog again