Friday, March 02, 2007

We just can't have nice things

That is a joke, between DH and I. It is from a Jeff Foxworthy comedy act. When we break something crappy or something cheap stops working, one of us will exclaim that, and we will both laugh fit to bust. Because we are simple, okay? It doesn't matter why, we just find it funny. Never mind I have more redneck in my family than Clifford the Big Red Dog. DH doesn't have redneck. He has county hick. There is a difference, but just barely. I have an uncle that until just a few years ago, had a dirt floor in the kitchen. That was so he could slaughter deer in there, and just throw more dirt and lime over the mess. Delightful. He has sinced moved into a real house with a roof and everything and lives in the city. I am not sure who is having the most trouble adjusting, he or his neighbours. It seems though, that this "can't have nice things" rule extends over to people as well. We don't have a lot of "real" friends. Oh, we have hundreds of imaginary friends - waving madly at the KT! - but not many real live, habitate in this city and can see all the time friends. We have friends of the family that are not really OUR friends but friends by association. I have a brother and sisters and cousins and their wives and children and so on. But not unconnected people that know us for us and not for everybody else. And that is fine, but sometimes it would be nice to have people to do things with that want you for you, you know what I mean? In the past, attempts at this have not ended well. There was the time we were invited to a dinner party that turned into an orgy. Talk about a shock! We went out to have a cigarette and when we came back it was to a sea of naked people. Then there was the concert in Detroit we were invited to, and I didn't even make it to the border. In fact, I didn't even make it into the van, as when the door opened smoke billowed out like a scene from Cheech and Chong. No way was I getting in there, and crossing the border no less! There are the poeple we knew from high school that have kids of their own, who ask for money at every turn. The last time we spoke to them they were asking for money to circumsize their son. Um, sorry, ya gotta pay for that yourself. Another couple is nice and everything and we get along, but they want to party every night of the week and stay out to all hours. I want to go to dinner or see a movie, not disco till we drop. Many times if we meet a couple and I really get along with the female, DH has nothing in common with the male. Or if they get along really great, I can't stand to be with her for even a minute. There was a promising group once, but after a few parties I came to realize that they were making fun of DH. Asking him questions about complicated things so they could laugh at his answers. That is just not right. Finding "couple" friends is hard for a lot of people, I hear, so I wasn't so worried about it. But it seems I can't have personal friends either. DD has been playing with certain girl and her older sister. They come here, or DD goes there. The mother and I had a lot in common and saw each other at events for other kids and so on. We have met for coffee, and more than a few time while our kids are at brownies we have gone for coffee, shopping, whatever. We even talked about taking the kids on vacation together, to a place where our husbands didn't seem interested in going. Earlier in the week, DD went and played there. I had her call to make sure they were ready, and I dropped her off. Picked her up 1.5 hours later, cheerful goodbyes etc. and all was fine. Last night when I picked DD up at brownies, the woman came up to me and got all agitated, saying that day DD talked so loud in the phone that it blew her daughters eardrum, and now she has an ear infection and a fever and needs drops and medicine. My daughter can't play with her kids anymore and she wants me to pay for the medicine. Now, I was standing right there when DD made that call, and I can guarantee you that she did not scream into the phone. In fact, I could hear the person on the other end of the line asking her to speak up - talking loudly enough that I could hear THEM from a few feet away. If anybody was talking loud it was her own daughter, and not mine. Words were exchanged. It was not pretty. I told her I heard the call and DD did not scream, and anyway if her daughter was in that much pain why did they still let DD come over? Why did they extend the visit from an hour (our usual) to an hour and a half? Why didn't they say something when I picked up my child, that there was a problem? She got angry and said "didn't you notice my daughter was in my arms and upset when you left?". Well, no. She was smiling and laughing with DD while she put her boots on, and frankly, the child is a suck. Every time I see them she is whining and crawling all over her mother. Plus she has said many times herself that her daughter is prone to earaches and eats antibiotics like candy. Seems to me, the last I heard from the medical community, ear infections are caused by bacteria and viruses - not loud noises. I asked, was it not possible, since her daughter had the sniffles for over a week, that her ear was already infected and happened to perf while she had the phone to her ear? Either way, why mention it days later when I see her twice a day every day when we bring/get the kids from school. Why all of a sudden tonight is it DD's fault and they can't play anymore, when just that morning she asked if I could bring her DD to a party they were invited to this week-end? By then I had DD's coat on and we were on our way out the door. She called something after me, I don't know what, but my answer was putting up my hand in a stop gesture, and saying "Look, you are clearly mentally ill. And trust me, I know mental illness when I see it. I don't know what kind of voices you are hearing in your head, but don't try to blame anything on my child. And as for paying for medicine, your co-pay couldn't have been more than a dollar fifty. Grow up". Then I spent the night seething about it. Sigh.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

It happens every time

I spend most of my time in the basement, like some kind of troll. Perhaps I need to find a bridge to live under. My office is in the family room, which is in the first lower level. There are windows here, and the wall to the upstairs is open save some spindles so the light from the sliding door comes in. But it is still "dark" and I need a bright lamp to work by. I face a cheerful wedge of chili pepper red wall, and the stair well wall covered in family pictures. Plus a fish tank that takes up most of my desk, so I do have nice things to look at. This is all meaningless, as it is still basement and this is where I spend most of my time. I make quick runs out every day to pick up or drop off the child, and forays to the grocery store of course. But for the most part, trollville. It never fails, however, that when I do need to leave the house we have some sort of inclement weather. Severe thunderstorms. Sleet and freezing rain. Freak snow storms that dump a few feet on us in the springtime. That sort of thing. Today is no exception. How exactly does this happen? What cosmic forces can be at work, here? I feel I should warn people who plan outdoor or special events to call me ahead of time so I can clear my schedule and not go anywhere the same day, lest my bad weather ruin their occasion. I have my next laser hair removal appointment today. We had rain, hard snow pellets, and I have heard news of more snow, rain, and perhaps freezing rain. It never fails. *Breaking news - I have been to my appointment and back, and the freezing rain advisory has passed. We now have thunderstorm warnings.*

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Don't look at me like that

When people found out I made Ruby homemade dog food, I got funny looks. I know I know, in the day and age of five thousand brands and flavours of commercial dog food, not to mention prescription dog food, why on earth would I make my own? Well, I had my reasons. Unfortunately I no longer have the time to make it, and after this length of time I decided she wasn't getting enough benefit to merit the labour. Don't get me wrong, it wasn't a HUGE deal to make it and the cost was about even. But time is a luxury I have little of these days, and something had to give. We have switched her back to dry dog food, albeit something that has been tailored to breeds like pugs and addresses key isssues with their diet. She likes it. We did a gradual switch, and though I am sure she would be thrilled to go back to the home cooked stuff, she dances for the dry now. And she has been drinking water again, something she STOPPED doing with the home cooked food - I think because it had such a high moisture content. Now, those same people that treated me like I was insane for cooking her food, now are tsking at me and shaking their heads, and giving me the "for shame" looks because I have switched her back to dry commercial stuff. Look, make up your freaking minds. Am I crazy to cook it myself or an animal abuser for giving her the dry stuff? You can't have it both ways. We still have snow on the ground, but it has warmed up so things are melting. It isn't too cold for Ruby to spend time outside, and she loves to sit on the step or root around in the mud or snurffle the snow banks at her leisure. As long as the sun is shining and it isn't windy, it is fine for her. Today I was getting the mail and overheard some pedestrians bemoaning poor Ruby and her plight. "Look at the poor thing, left outside all alone like that. She looks so sad". And she did look sad, if you don't know her. She was on the step, looking out at the world, with her rump on the edge of the door frame. WE know that if she is facing out, then she is just sitting and watching the world go by. If she is facing in, then she wants to come inside. If you try to let her in before she turns around, she purposefully ignores you. I felt like screaming "She is not a poor dog! She sleeps on my head! She gets premium treats, just for doing her business. Nobody gives ME a cookie just because I went pee. She has more toys than the north pole, it isn't our fault she only wants her smelly old squirrel toy, even though I am not a princess and flattened it under the feather bed. She is not sad, pugs just look like that". But I didn't. You see, these two women weren't speaking english and they don't know I speak french, and I don't want to blow my cover. I get my best information when they gossip on the way by the house. Look, I have to have some fun. *I want to interject here, that Ruby the wonder dog just spent ten minutes digging at stuff on the bottom shelf of my desk to get at what she thought was a crumb of food. It was a paper dot. She was not impressed and spit it out. Then circled around the other way, saw it again, and started the process over thinking it was a crumb. I wonder how it will taste this time.*

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Man, that's annoying!

*start vent* Since changing laptops I can't seem to leave blog comments anymore on other blogs. And boy, is that annoying! Once I finally get past the word verification, then it denies my password. If I try to leave a comment as anonymous, it starts the word verification loop again. I give up. *end vent* So, my little chickadees. In case you were wondering, I have not offed myself in a desperate attempt to get out of work assignments. There would be no point. My minds eye conjurs a picture of co-workers peering down the hole at the casket and sobbing quietly, wishing they had asked me just one more time how to archive their email. Or that they had sent me a request the week before and I had gotten to it before leaving the mortal coil. Then somebody would notice the dessert table and say "oooh, timbits" and they would all forget I existed. Until something broke, then they would curse my name. Thanks to a slower laptop and a lot more waiting and not being able to multi-task as well as before, my mittens are done and have thumbs. No pictures, because I have taken my last picture with that damn camera. If you try to get close at all to anything the image ends up blurry. I have decided to get myself a NEW camera. One that has some sort of actual (not digital) zoom so I can take close ups of things like mittens and not get all flustrated when the picture does not turn out. We have another camera. Our "family" camera. But that is the one DH uses to take pictures at holidays and events. We cannot share a camera. Lord forbid I change a setting, his world would turn upside down. We found out long ago, when it comes to cameras and computers, we are better off having our own (or our own profiles). So. How is work going, you ask? Dinner was peanut butter eaten with a spoon, with an ice cream chaser. What does that tell you. DD was making me nuts so I made arrangements with one of her friends for dinner and some play time today so I could finish a few things. I know I have been working too much lately, but I don't know what to do about it. I can't just get another job right now. To do something in my field is just trading crap I know for crap I have to learn, with starting pay and no seniority to boot. To change careers? Well, right now there isn't a whole heck of a lot locally. We are the "automotive capital of Ontario". The "Big Three" and feeder plants for parts and services employee most of the workforce here. And right now, there are more plant closings and layoffs than open jobs. The first quarter of the year is always tight, nobody is hiring right now. I even heard the fast food places are laying off! So for now, I am stuck. My therapist said to do the best I can, get what I can done in a reasonable amount of hours that I am paid for, and let the rest go until the next day. Don't obsess, don't fret and worry. Easy for him to say, he is making 125 an hour and he knows I am coming back next week. Heck, he can go ahead and remortgage based on me alone. Yet I do agree, that I cannot go on like I am. On a very serious note, I am starting to get that feeling of wanting to go to sleep and not wake up so I don't have to deal with it anymore. It's a pretty scary feeling, and I am smart enough to know a huge warning sign when I see it. Starting next week, I am working EIGHT hours per day total and that is it. What gets done gets done, what does not just waits. And if that is a problem, I will direct them to my manager and see what happens. I can't keep going like this. In other news, it is harder than you think to create knitted/crocheted clothes for a baby alive doll, in case you were wondering. Her chest is only 10.5 inches around, but head is enormous. No pullover sweaters for this babe, it has to be cardigan all the way. Jumper dresses that have buttoned straps would be okay, but the straps have to be so narrow because of her big neck and her arms are huge compared to her chest circumferance. I can't find any patterns on the net that take into account the narrow chest and big head and long body and husky arms so I am trying to come up with something myself. Thank goodness it is for easter gifts (DD and my one niece both have the dolls), I am going to need that lead time to figure it all out! I started a swatch of seed stitch while waiting for DD to come out of school. My one idea was a baby doll type dress that had seed stitch around the chest to the waist, and a sort of ruffle-y skirt and diaper cover. Add some little socks with a ruffle around the ankle and Bob's your uncle. Only, ask Bob if he can go ahead and write a pattern for me, kay? Another idea is a simple onesie type thing that buttons over the shoulders. Picture the mother of all wedgies, with the undies making it up to and being pinned together at the shoulders with buttons. Basically a knitted tube with leg holes at the bottom and tabs with buttons at the top. I have a simple duckie and bunny outline that can be duplicate stitched or knitted right into the front. Some bunny slippers and maybe a hat with bunny ears, and there we have it. Nothing says Easter quite like a onesie with a duckie on it, and socks with bunny ears on them. No hooded sweaters or wraps, because her head is too freaking big. And if I have time, some washable bibs.