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Day #190: A Day of Sayings

The Story:

“Stuffed in here like sardines”

That's me, second from the right.

“About as successful as making caramels in the Florida summer”

Yeah, mine don't look like this.

“As stubborn as day-old pasta sauce”

Glad we're not busy tonight, this pasta sauce just won't come off...

“Here, let me help you pat yourself on the back”

“Nothing a pint of Ben & Jerry’s and a spoon can’t cure”

I mean, LOOK at these guys.

“Now that’s one spicy chick!”

“As cute as a baby carrot!”

First you make me eat them, and then you dress me up like one? Too far mom, too far.

“You know what they say about a clean house… mother must be in town”

Just kiddin Mom... can't wait to see you!

“All dressed up and nowhere to go”

I put on my GOOD wig and everything...

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The Not So Fantastic Reality:

The above story was inspired by the following tidbits I encountered today:

ONE:      Ever catch yourself narrating your own life? I do it quite often (yeah, I totally talk to myself too). Today the narration deviated from its normal rhetoric and chopped up my day into pocket-sized expressions (most of which I made up, although some are borrowed). I feel it gives a bit of a sparkle to an otherwise boring and tedious day in adulthood. So I decided to list a few of my saying above and will attempt to explain them a bit:

“Stuffed in here like sardines” = I attended, along with the rest of my college (so about 100+ people) a two-hour meeting. This alone would not be significant except the chairs were all placed very tightly together with no center aisle. Just about every seat was taken and we all felt as if we had boarded a plane due to the lack of arm and leg room. I’m actually going to be a little sore tomorrow from hunching in order to minimize contact with the two people sitting next to me (I really don’t like to be touched).

“About as successful as making caramels in the Florida summer” = I attempted (and failed) to make my first batch of homemade caramels today. Everything was going fine, until it wasn’t. Then the bottom burnt, the sticky goo boiled out of the pot and scaled my hand and I seriously doubt the gelatinous confection will ever harden to its proper consistency thanks in part to the loverly Florida humidity (yes, it was about 80 degrees when I was slaving away at the stove).

“As stubborn as day-old pasta sauce” = As if making caramels were not enough of a challenge, I decided to do the dishes too. I know, I’m outta control!! Spaghetti sauce, you’ve met your match.

“Here, let me help you pat yourself on the back” = The aforementioned meeting today was a whole lot of “look how great we are! Our program, department, college rocks! Let’s talk about it for two hours! YEAH!!!” Holy cow… I mean I’m proud to be a part of such a great college and surrounded by so many acclaimed faculty and staff, but sheesh… couldn’t we just have gotten a newsletter or something? (man, I’m antisocial, hehe)

“Nothing a pint of Ben & Jerry’s and a spoon can’t cure” = We have a hard and fast rule in this house- ice cream is not a luxury, it’s a necessity. Today, I was pining for a pint and luckily, my awesome boyfriend bought me the new flavor I’ve been wanting to try- Red Velvet Cake. Um… nn;;lkn;;;kklllllkmllllllll ….whoa sorry, just had to wipe the drool off the keyboard.

“Now that’s one spicy chick!” = Simple, I made buffalo chicken strips for dinner tonight, a Sam specialty.

“As cute as a baby carrot!” = And to accompany my spicy chick? Baby carrots and blue cheese of course.

“You know what they say about a clean house… someone’s mother must be in town” = I am trying desperately to keep my house is somewhat of an orderly fashion having just found out a few days ago my mom will be coming home to visit over the next week. Time to break out the Clorox and Swiffer spray jet!

“All dressed up and nowhere to go” = Tomorrow night is one of several events for my program, an awards ceremony and dinner. So, as per my usual ‘pregame’ routine, I’m trying on all my wardrobe options, think I’ll go with the green dress.

Love & Squirrels.

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Day #160: Colette in Crisis

The Story:

Cramped into the tiny space, Colette adjusted her aching knees, trying futilely to find a comfortable position. How long had she been in here? Time seemed to stretch out and away from her like ripples of heat rising off blacktop when viewed from a distance. She knew one thing though, if she didn’t get out of here and soon, she was going to lose it.

As if being imprisoned in this metal deathtrap wasn’t enough she was surrounded by thousands of people, going about their business of enjoying their freedom, completely ignorant to her plight. Colette had tried to call out to them, signal them somehow to solicit help but all her efforts were short-lived and complete failures. No one looked, no one saw. They just zoomed past, completely absorbed in whatever errand forced them on towards innumerable destinations. Colette tried to shut it all out, pretend that she was under the covers in her bed, safe and warm with cold feet being the worst of her troubles. She could almost feel the soft pile of her worn cotton sheets against her cheek before a back spasm catapulted her back to her desperate reality. At least she was able to maneuver her arm enough to rub the arch of her back and somewhat alleviate the pain- thank God for small miracles, and all that.

The metal box that was her prison was noticeably growing hotter with each passing minute- or hour; the two were interchangeable at this point. Having stripped down to just her cotton camisole, Colette leaned closer to the vent that allowed in a little air from the outside world. Swallowing the urge to spew at the stink of putrid air that greeted her nostrils, Colette steeled herself and after a few seconds was able to take in the cooler air, the smell of rot and wet city was almost pleasant now.

Suddenly, Colette was keenly aware that she was no longer alone. Had her captor returned? The thought sat on her brain like an olive skewered to the top of a muffuletta. If they had come back, would she be released or would her tortured be continued in some new unimaginable fashion? The possibilities instantly overloaded her already fatigued mind. A shadow by the door, the handle began to move… Colette could only wait.

“Hey honey, sorry that took so long. For some reason they didn’t have the order I phoned in, so I had to reorder everything, and of course there was a line…anyway, let’s get outta here so we can chow down on some barbeque, what do you say?” Colette’s mother smiled at her as she climbed into the driver’s seat after depositing their takeout in the backseat. After abandoning her in this Volvo-shaped tomb for at least 20 minutes, her mother’s ‘cheery’ demeanor paired with the drool-inducing smell of barbeque that now filled the car was obviously some kind of ploy to win the girl’s trust. Colette just shrugged- best to remain noncommittal in these delicate situations. No doubt her diabolical birth-giver intended to regain Colette’s trust only to dash it against the pavement later in another subversive fashion not slightly removed from outright torture. Cruel woman.

Driving out of the restaurant’s parking lot and into traffic, Colette’s mother whistled along to some vile tune being disgorged from the Volvo’s speakers allowing Colette time to reflect on what horrors might await her once they arrived home, green beans from the can? cleaning out Sniggles’ litter box? emptying the dishwasher?!? Colette shuddered at the possibilities.

Stop being so dramatic, you'll stunt your growth.

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The Not So Fantastic Reality:

The above story was inspired by the following tidbits I encountered today:

ONE:      A curse upon cars, the lot of them! After spending my entire evening inside one, trapped as it were- I can honestly say that if I were picked up in my sleep tonight and moved to a locale where there were no cars, or at least fewer of the dumb things I would hug my abductor and never leave such a wondrous place.  Ok, I’m being a little dramatic, but after riding/driving around on Orlando streets during a four-hour thunderstorm, surrounded by the soft-headed sock-puppets that are Orlando drivers I was so wound up by the time I got home I felt like I had just endured some kind of trauma. While I wasn’t trapped and actually elected to ride along/drive tonight, being stuck in a car from 5pm to 9pm and only going approximately 10 miles in any direction took its toll. The story is how I imagine a very dramatic pre-teen cataloging her ‘imprisonment’ in such a situation as her mother runs some errands about town.

That's a great idea... if you're suicidal (Orlando drivers can barely spell bicycle, let alone notice one as they careen down the road 20 miles over the speed limit... just sayin)

TWO:    One of our stops was at 4Rivers Smokehouse in Winter Park, have to keep mama happy while she’s riding shotgun- a bottle of Cheerwine and some fried pickles are definitely one way to do that. Nom… nom… nom… nom….burp!

Love & Squirrels.

Day #36: Curb Appeal

Posted on

The Story:

“I wish I could explain it, Peter. I really do. But I can’t. It’s just something that I’ve always had to deal with and if this is too much for you, then I guess it’s just better if you leave,” teary-eyed, Sandra looked into her boyfriend’s eyes for a sign of understanding. “I’m sorry, Sandra. I just can’t be with a person with such an irrational fear. I mean, who’s afraid of escalators? They are just stairs that move, for crying out loud! It may seem cold to you, but I just don’t see a future with someone who is so weak minded. I’ll see ya around,” and with that, Peter shoved his hands in his pockets and walked out of Sandra’s apartment.

Later that night, after grabbing a bite to eat and some beers with his buddies, Peter caught a cab back to his apartment. After paying the cabbie, Peter looked both ways and stepped off the curb and into the street. As he stepped down, his left shoe began to come off just as his foot hit the pavement causing Peter’s ankle to bend in a most unnatural direction. Howling in pain, Peter hopped on his right foot while grabbing his left ankle. Feeling ridiculous for injuring himself on something so benign as a curb, Peter grimaced through the pain and tried to act cool for the two pedestrians who happened to be walking by. Waving to them in an attempt at nonchalance, Peter took a few backwards steps into the street–and was hit by a yellow VW bug with daisy hubcaps.

Waking up in the hospital days later, Peter glanced around the room that was littered with bouquets of flowers, “Get Well Soon” cards, somewhat limp balloons and even a few stuffed animals. “Ahhhh, my head,” Peter groaned, reaching up he discovered that his head had been shaved and there was a large bandage covering the front of his head. Upon hearing sounds from his room, a nurse scurried in and smiled to see that he was awake. “It’s about time young man,” she said as she took his blood pressure and checked his eyes. “We weren’t sure you wanted to wake up,” the nurse continued before leaving to alert Peter’s doctor that he was awake.

“Hello, Peter, I’m Dr. Phobias. You gave us quite the scare there for a while,” said a wizened-looking man with what Peter thought was a slight Greek accent as he entered the room a few minutes later. Walking to Peter’s bedside the doctor continued, “I’m just going to run through a few tests to see if you have all of your reflexes intact as well as a few brain exercises to ensure everything is recovering from the trauma normally, sound good?”. Peter nodded and the doctor ran through several dozen tests with nothing but normal results. “Ok, Peter, now I’m going to need you to sit up and swing your legs over the edge of the bed here for one more test,” Dr. Phobias said as he patted the edge of Peter’s hospital bed.

Sitting up, Peter did as he was asked and swung his slightly weakened lower appendages over the edge and was immediately overcome with a sense of dread, panic and slight vertigo as he looked down the 3 foot distance to the floor. “What’s the matter, my boy?” the doctor asked with obvious concern. “I don’t know, I just… it’s nothing,” Peter shook his head and tried to look over the edge of his bed one more time. And, just as before, he was hit with such gripping panic at the gap of distance between himself and the floor he actually swooned. Coming to a few seconds later, Peter was forced to explain what had happened by his insistent doctor, less he be subjected to a flurry of tests and examinations.

“Ah, I’ve seen this in coma patients before. You have apparently developed an acute fear- or phobia, as a result of your accident. I want to try something if I may,” Dr. Phobias called for a nurse and a wheelchair and then asked Peter to close his eyes as they lifted him off the bed and into the chair. Wheeling Peter into an elevator, the doctor asked, “How do you feel Peter?” as they climbed to the top floor of the hospital. “I feel find, doc,” Peter answered. Arriving at their destination, Dr. Phobias wheeled Peter outside and onto the helipad and to the edge of the building, over 20 stories up. “How do you feel now, Peter?” the doctor asked again. Peter looked over the edge and replied, “Still fine, doc… what gives?”. Dr. Phobias pulled at his goatee and after thinking a minute, replied, “It appears, Peter, that you are quite terrified of very small heights. I’ve never seen this particular phobia before, but that seems to be what we are dealing with.”

The good doctor didn’t know how right he was. Peter’s new fear was debilitating. He found the most rudimentary tasks, getting out of bed, walking up or down his doorstep, taking a bath, using a stepstool, even sitting on the couch, all became practically impossible. Eventually, Peter stopped leaving his house and was forced into reclusive solitude (do you know how many curbs and steps there are out there?!?). Lying on his makeshift bed of an egg-crate and comforter, Peter dunked his spoon into the half-eaten jar of Nutella on the floor and stuffed the heaping spoonful of chocolate spread into his mouth. He had never been so depressed.

Ding Dong!

Peter’s doorbell shook him out of his reverie, and rolling out of his ‘bed’ he shuffled to the door. “Who is it?” he asked through the still closed door. “It’s Sandra, can I come in?” A familiar voice replied. Opening the door, Peter smiled sheepishly at the girl he had so harshly rejected months earlier. “I heard about your accident and just wanted to see how you were doing. I brought chicken parmesan,” she said a little awkwardly as she displayed something in a Tupperware dish.

Peter had never been so humbled. The graciousness being bestowed on him by someone he had so unfairly judged and found lacking brought tears to his eyes. “Oh Sandra, I am so sorry. I understand now. You’re not weak-minded, you’re none of the horrible things I said that day,” Peter said as he invited Sandra to come inside. “Oh I know that,” Sandra chuckled as she scooped the wonderful-smelling food onto two plates. “Come on, let’s eat. We can talk later,” Sandra said and taking both plates she walked to where the dining room table had been and sat down on the floor.

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The Not So Fantastic Reality:

The above story was inspired by the following tidbits I encountered today:

ONE:      I’m a total and complete klutz. I have been my whole life. I trip up stairs (that’s right up, just ask my college roommate) I trip down them (usually while wearing a dress), I trip over my feet, your feet, any feet… you get the picture. So today, in the parking lot as I’m walking to my car for the drive home I step off of a curb, just a regular ‘ol curb and somehow lose my shoe and twist my left ankle…bad. Of course this was done with plenty of witnesses, so despite the pain (and the instant tears) I ‘walked it off’ long enough to get to my car and gingerly climb inside where I proceeded to howl in pain and cry at how pathetic I am (more on that in a bit). For someone who trips with such frequecency, you would think I would begin to hate, maybe even fear, things like stairs and now, curbs (honestly, who twists their ankle stepping off a curb???). Then I thought it would be funny to write about someone who suffered from a phobia of ‘small heights’… meet Peter.

Owwie... a lot

TWO:    I am still sick. I have been sick for going on three weeks. Yes, I know, I should go see a doctor, get an antibiotic, etc. I’m working on it (says the girl who hates doctors and pills). Anywho, falling off the curb only intensified my overall pathetic existence today… so when I got home, after propping up my sore ankle, I mollified my sick and injured self with a big spoonful of Nutella. Man, I love that stuff. It’s like a warm hug by the fire on a winter’s day. Yummo.

THREE:  Having been alerted that her daughter was ill (thanks Facebook) my mother was on the phone in an instant asking what was wrong and if I was taking anything and what were my symptoms. She also, as many mothers would, brought over a home cooked meal for her little girl, her version of chicken parmesan. Thank God for mothers.  :o)

Love & Squirrels.