Monday, June 29, 2015

Press where for Debit?

Helpful or, insulting?

Just in case you're not clear on what to do here.

I saw this at a local gas station the other day. As I stood there pumping my gas I started thinking, How oblivious or inattentive have we become that we need such blatantly obvious signs pointing to things? I'm far from the smartest person but come on, really?

Unless you've been living in a cave for the last decade or two you should know how certain things work. I have been pumping my own gas out here for over six years now. I get this. You follow the prompts on the screen that is attached to the pump site. Then you slip your credit/debit card into the slot marked as such or you go pay inside. It's not that complicated. If you can't handle these simple instructions, maybe you shouldn't be driving a car?

I could have been a total creep and peeled the sticker off and placed it somewhere else just to mess with people. But, I thought better of it and decided to be nice and leave the Captain Obvious sticker for those clueless debit-paying folks.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

The diabetes Jedi and four years of Type 1

Four years ago today life threw one hell of a curve ball our way when my son was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. No one in our family expected this. It was like that scene in The Empire Strikes Back when we all found out that Darth Vader was Luke's father and everyone went Whaaaaaaat??

Anyway, in the diabetic community many Type 1's celebrate the day they were diagnosed like they would any other anniversary. It's called a dia-versary. We have never made a really big deal about his disease because I want Chris' life to be as normal as possible. But I thought I would remember this day by dedicating a post to it.

Four years. It's not that long, really. But it feels like more when you consider how much of his life and our life revolves around diabetes. That's 1,460 days of daily insulin injections, testing blood glucose levels, counting carb amounts, and doing math calculations with added injections, bg testing and carbs for those high or low sugars, and possible ketone testing if his sugar is too high. Then there's the constant worry on my end. And the physical, mental, and emotional toll this illness takes on his body.

If I had to use one word to describe diabetes I would say 'exhausting'. It requires constant maintenance. It is never-ending. There is no break, no relief. Everything that my pancreas does naturally without me thinking about it is what Chris has to manually do for himself. I could have pizza and a Sprite while watching a marathon of the original Star Wars trilogy in my bathrobe and not think anything of it. My son can do the same thing, except he would have to pause the movie to test his sugar levels and give himself an insulin injection before he eats. Unless he was low in which case he would eat and drink to bring his levels up and then re-test and dose accordingly because pizza is considered a slow-acting carb which can cause his sugar to spike as the night goes on. Once all that was taken care of he could go back to enjoying the movie. Of course, he could bring his supplies to the couch and do his diabetic maintenance routine without interruption. My point is that unlike me, he can't just eat and watch Han Solo get frozen in carbonite.  He has to be mindful of his body because his pancreas doesn't work.

Yes, this disease can be as burdensome as a non-stop chattering C3PO but some good has come out of it. My son has become more responsible for his age. He knows what needs to be done to maintain his health and he takes it as seriously as a young Padawan training to become a Jedi. I'm proud everyday of his mature attitude.

Also, he takes opportunities to educate people about diabetes. He used to be a bit reluctant to discuss it but now if someone asks him about his pump he doesn't mind talking about it. And during certain school assignments, when it was warranted, he made mention of his disease, which his teachers respected.

Sometimes there are battles. Like when he doesn't want to test again. Or the insulin injection hurt. Or when he's cranky because his sugar level is high. I understand all of these and I accept them because they are the Dark Side of this crappy illness. And because they don't occur every day. For the most part Chris handles his diabetes with dignity and grace. A lots of use of The Force.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

My battle scar

We had pizza a few days ago. It wasn't delivery, it was DiGiorno.  Not that it matters or that it's relative to this post.  Anyway, while getting one of the pies out of the oven my arm accidentally touched one of the racks and I got this burn. Incidentally I was wearing oven mitts. Maybe I need to invest in arm-length oven mitts to prevent this from happening in the future. They could be like those long, silky ones that women wore long ago when they went out for the evening. Do such things even exist? I'll have to look into it.

So even though I immediately put some ice on the burn it still got all icky. Billy put some neosporin and gauze on it because he felt bad for me. It really hurt for a while. Then he said I would probably have a scar from it. I said, Cool! Chicks dig scars. Oh wait, I am a chick. Then my son shook his head at me while saying, No Mom, no.

Here's what it looks like now:

Scar from battling a distant relative of Smaug.

It was a lot worse, all burnt up skin and bubbling but I didn't want people getting all blech and possibly puking so I waited to post a picture. I'm always thinking of you guys.

When people see the burn mark and ask me what happened I tell them I was in an epic battle with a dragon and I got this burn. I told Billy this version and he said, Must have been a small dragon. He's so hilarious. My mom on the other hand just rolled her eyes at my explanation. I swear sometimes it's like she just met me.

Monday, June 22, 2015

And this is why I prefer shopping at home

Ah the joys of online shopping. You can do it while wearing pajamas or the stained, crappy clothes you reserve only for laundry day. You don't have to venture into the heat thus peeling yourself out of the car each time you need to go into a store. And lastly, you don't have to deal with weird nonsense like I did this past weekend.

A week ago I bought a pair of summery pants. I was on the fence about them but I paid for them anyway. Then when I got home I had buyer's remorse and decided I did not like them as much as I thought I did. And then Sandra Bullock's voice echoed in my head that line from the Blind Side "If you don't absolutely love it in the store you won't wear it; the store's where you like it best." When I went to return them I found out that their return policy is even exchange or store credit only. No cash back. Well, this sucks. So basically they are holding my money hostage and forcing me to buy products from them. I took the store credit which I will use in the future and then never buy from there again.

Next I had to stop in at Target. On my way from the car to the entrance I was approached by a couple asking for gas money. Their "story" was that they left their house without a wallet and have no money for gas to get home. Weird. For good measure the boyfriend/husband/accomplice added that they drove up to see the OB/GYN. Okay....what? They both left the house without a wallet? He's driving around with no ID or driver's license? And I'm fairly certain there isn't a doctor around who will see you without showing them your insurance card or having any money to pay for the visit. This all sounded a little funky to me. I wanted to say all this but instead I told them I never carry cash on hand.

Now before anyone calls me an unsympathetic beetch let me say that I have in the past given money to pan-handlers. I do support several charities and I can be a sucker for a hard luck case. But these two looked and sounded as suspicious as their story.

My last stop took me to a place where all I wanted was to purchase a gift card/certificate. However, the cashier, who was very sweet and apologetic, told me that they were under new management and that gift certs were suspended until all the old information was gone. Whatever that means. Weird.

All of this plus the simple convenience are why I plan to do more online shopping from the comfort of my home while wearing my yoga pants and Avengers t-shirt and eating ice cream.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Drop the other shoe already

Things are going so well lately that it scares me. It's like I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop. So I started thinking about that phrase "Waiting for the other shoe to drop." Where did it come from?  Was there a time when people sat and dropped one shoe and then waited for the other one to fall?

Imagine walking into a room where two people are sitting. One shoe is on the floor and the other is being held by one person while both are staring at the shoe in hand. You ask, "What are you doing?"

And the answer is "Well, we let one shoe fall and now we're waiting for the other shoe to drop."

So many sarcastic retorts come to mind. Okay, don't let me stop you. Let me know how that turns out. And, Are you high or stupid? Or both? 

I did some checking and according to Wiktionary this phrase means: To wait for the inevitable next step. To await an inevitable event. To wait for something bad to happen.

Seems there's a lot of waiting involved in this saying. But I still didn't see what all this waiting had to do with shoes. I searched some more and found the origin on a couple of sites that put this saying to the late 19th/early 20th century in NYC when apartments were all built the same and you could hear your neighbors through the walls and floors.

The story goes that late one night a drunk man came home and while sitting on his bed he took off one shoe and dropped it on the floor. Realizing how noisy he was being he removed the other shoe and quietly placed it on the floor. Then he crawled into bed to sleep. A few minutes later the man in the apartment below him yelled, "Well, drop the other one! I can't sleep, waiting for you to drop the other shoe."

I imagine that if this saying were born in this day and age there would be some colorful language added. In fact I think the phrase would be entirely different because the neighbor would yell, "You better knock that shit off!" So with that in mind, things are going so well lately that it scares me. It's like I'm waiting to knock that shit off.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

The cheap tape vs. me

The task was an easy one. Put these files in those boxes and build more boxes if needed. Simple, right? Yeah...I thought so, too.

Now, I know that sometimes doing certain jobs can confound me but this is not one of them. I've put together many boxes throughout the years both for filing away archives at jobs and for moving. Those quick set up storage boxes from Staples I can practically make in my sleep. And regular moving boxes are a snap with a tape dispenser.

I filled the first few cartons and figured I would need at least one more so after going through the pile I found one that would serve my purpose. I grabbed it and headed to the supply closet. After coming up empty on my search for a tape gun I found the rolls of masking tape in the back. I prefer the clear packing tape but I thought, Okay, I can make this work. 

When I went to pull the tape to get started I noticed that it was all ragged. Someone didn't break it off evenly, or, they were in a big hurry. So I broke off the little pieces and pulled an even strip. Then I built my box, held the lid in place and started pulling the tape from one end to the other. And I watched as the piece got thinner until it was just this narrow, jagged size.

Oh for crying out loud, I thought. I broke the piece off and began to fiddle with the tape again to get a whole sheet going. This time I started applying tape on the opposite end. And the tape grew smaller and smaller again as I pulled.

Big sigh. Ridiculous, I said to myself. This went on several more times. In the end my box looked like something taped together by a three-year old. Oh, and it turns out I didn't need that stupid box after all because all the files fit nicely in the existing boxes.

This happened last week at work. Today I had another encounter with that evil roll of tape, which I have dubbed Cheap Tape. Which made me think of the band Cheap Trick and so I made up my own lyrics to 2 of their songs.

Dream Police (Renamed Cheap Tape)

The cheap tape it lives inside the closet
The cheap tape is one that I wouldn't get
The cheap tape is going to frustrate me, oh no

I Want You To Want Me  (Renamed I Want You To Tape Me)

I want you to tape me
I need you to tape me
I'd love you to tape me
I'm begging you to tape me

When I was done I made sure the tape end was broken off evenly. Then I put the evil roll back in the closet while casting shifty eyes at it. Until next time, cheap tape.

Friday, June 12, 2015

There's more to June than what we know

June. The sixth month of the year. A time to celebrate Dads. It's when school ends and summer begins. But that's not all. I was on a Pop Culture site and came across some facts about the month of June that I wasn't aware of. So, I thought I would share them because I'm thoughtful like that. Also, let it never be said that The Fearless Scribe is not educational. As always, my feature commentary is in blue.

The first weekend in June is National Doughnut Weekend: I did not know this, however, I unintentionally ate some doughnuts anyway. They were not from Dunkin' Donuts. They were delicious. 

Dairy Month: Ice-cold milk to wash down the doughnuts? Ice cream? Yes, please!

Candy Month: I knew I loved this month for more than the fact that days get longer.

Fight The Filthy Fly Month: Not sure why this needs to be recognized, but okay.

Fresh Fruit and Vegetables Month: Despite my love of all things sweet and bad for you I do like to eat fruits and veggies, especially during the summer.

Great Outdoors Month: Spending time by a pool counts, right? I mean, if the pool is located outside it should count.

Iced Tea Month: My favorite non-alcohol beverage of choice.

National Nude Day is on the Summer Solstice, the day with the longest daylight of the year, which is usually June 21st. There is actually a day that celebrates nudity? This is a frightening thought. For the first official day of Summer I plan to wear shorts and a t-shirt just like all the other typical hot days here. 

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Letter (of thanks and explanation) to the car insurance rep

Edited to change James' location. This morning while blow drying my hair I realized that I made a mistake. James is from Arizona and I should have remembered that considering we briefly talked about Lake Havasu and Phoenix and his proximity to both. Why it came to me at that moment I have no clue. At least I didn't recall my error while I was on the toilet because how embarrassing would that have been? Although I have gotten some good ideas while seated there. Anyway, the supervisor on call who I spoke with to praise James and his great service (And who's name I sadly don't remember) was from the Midwest. 

Dear James, Otherwise Known As, The Poor, Unfortunate Insurance Sales Rep Who Took My Call When I Was Purchasing A New Vehicle,

Let me start by saying that I am not a raving lunatic. I know I mentioned that during the course of our conversation but I just wanted to reaffirm that and get it out of the way.

Thank you for all of your help, your patience and courteousness. And for putting up with my unusual level of chattiness. When I'm nervous or stressed out I tend to talk a lot and let's face it buying a new car can be a bit stressful. But you handled my endless ranting so well and even humored me as I asked you several many questions.

In addition to my Chatty Cathy persona under duress, I also sometimes slip back into reporter mode and ask a lot of questions. I might say it's an old occupational hazard, but really I'm just deflecting my nervousness. That and I'm just plain nosy.

I hope you made some progress working on your car. It was certainly a nice weekend for it, even though you were in the Midwest somewhere especially with you being next door in Arizona. Your work hours are brutal but after doing them for the past 7 months you must be used to it. I'm a self-confessed night owl and even I think working the 5pm-midnight shift is icky.

Anyway, I appreciate how quickly you were able to get my paperwork together and faxed over to the dealership, despite how distracting our phone conversation was. Also, I'm glad to have brightened your night and made you laugh and probably given you something to gossip around the  water-cooler about. I had this one lady call to switch her policy to a new car and boy! did she talk my ear off. She was funny and just this side of crazy.

Now that I think about it, I could have had a couple of drinks to take the edge off but even here in permissive Las Vegas, it's considered inappropriate to buy a new car while intoxicated. Go figure. Still, the phone conversation would have been far more amusing.The ride home, not so much.

Thanks again!


Sandy, the Jabber Jaw

Monday, June 1, 2015

Questions that should have answers

Sometimes I get to thinking and I puzzle over things. You see, I'm a curious sort and I have questions, things I wonder about. But no answers. I suppose I could google them but I'm a bit afraid of the results. We all know what happens when you google something you typed incorrectly. I can only imagine what I would find with my questions correctly spelled. Still, I'm curious.

So anyway, here's what keeps me up at night. Or, at least occupied when I'm bored and there's nothing good on TV.

Why is it that I manage to get an itch on my back in the exact place I can't reach and then I end up with my back against the wall doing some sort of silly mambo to get relief?

How is it that some people are so chipper in the mornings? I, on the other hand, wake up like it's the end of the world and wear my sunglasses and a don't-bother-me look as if I had too much vodka the night before.

Why are bugs in the bathroom at the exact time that I have to go, forcing me to hold it while I run screaming for Bill to go take care of them?

Would snoring be considered an acceptable form of defense or assault against a spouse? I'm just asking this for a friend, ya know. 

How is it that whenever I have to go somewhere it seems that everyone else is on the road and it takes me an ungodly hour to get out of my street?

Why does my desk always look like a ransacked stationary store despite my efforts to keep things organized?

Why do people ask me if I'm busy when they can see that I am but they never ask when I'm sitting there with nothing to do?

Does anyone else have questions they want answers to? This is a legit question and not one of those I wonder about.