Re-launched, but still slightly under construction. :-)

Friday, May 22, 2015

The best way to welcome new employees

Friday, May 22, 2015 By

AUGUSTA, GA. - Recently, I was using the microwave in a different office. I was not familiar with this machine, and when I pushed the start button ... and the RADIO came on. I spun around looking for the source of the noise, and a professor came out of his office, to see me looking around in the air for the magical surprise radio. Simultaneously, we realized it was coming from the microwave at the same time.

"That's weird," he said. And we both laughed.

AND THEN I SAW IT. The button marked "voice record."

"What the hell does this do?" I asked.

"It probably lets you record a message when so it speaks instead of beeping when your food is done," he said.

So we tried it, but it didn't work that way. We supposed that it is probably a relic of the pre-cell-phone days, when people would leave messages for each other instead of texting.

Knowing the next person to discover this button would be equally surprised, I recorded "DON'T TOUCH THIS BUTTON!"

We have new faculty starting soon. I am looking forward to this.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Beware the multibear... whatever that is

Tuesday, May 19, 2015 By


Emerson: "MOM."

Me: "zzzzzzhuh? What?"

I glance at the clock. It's 3:48 a.m.

Emerson: "Mom. I was telling him that he doesn't need to be afraid of the multibear, but he wasn't listening."

Me: "Oh?"

Emerson:"Do you know what a multibear is?"

Me: "No."

Emerson:"It's a bear with multiple heads."

I open my eyes on the darkened room. That's a scary mental picture.

Me: "Okay, and what about a multibear?"

Emerson: "Well, I was just telling him that he doesn't need to be afraid of the multibear, like it's not going to come out of the distance, or anything."

Me: "Right. That makes sense."

Emerson: "And then, just as I was saying that, boom. Multibear. Right in the distance."

Me: "Oh, man. That's scary. What did you do?"

Emerson: "zzzzzzzzzzz...:


Thursday, May 14, 2015

Kids know how to make medicine fun

Thursday, May 14, 2015 By

AUGUSTA, GA. - So, long story short, as a result of her thrilling ER visit a while back, Emerson had to follow up with a pediatric gastroenterologist, who recommended a colonoscopy.

"How do you feel about that, Doodle?" I asked.

"Oh, I feel totally comfortable with it," Emerson said. "You know what she said? She said, 'Before this, you're going to poop your brains out, and after it, you're going to fart your brains out!'"

I snort-laughed. "Okay, well, she's not wrong about it, from what I understand."

"Maybe I can fart the alphabet."

"I would actually be interested to see that, Em."

Maybe this is where she discovers her superpower!

Monday, May 11, 2015

Growing up is hard - for moms

Monday, May 11, 2015 By

AUGUSTA, GA - Recently, Emerson experienced one of her first big disappointments. It was something she wanted very badly, something she worked hard to attain, and after being given an opportunity, that opportunity was snatched away from her because of someone else's mistake. It might still be fixable, but we don't know, yet.

It was hard to hear the deep, resonant sobs she poured out into the pillows. My heart hurt for her, and all I could do was hold her and say how sorry I was that this happened.

After an hour of bawling, she sat up and asked for something to drink. Then she looked at me askance. "And maybe a tiny bit of ice cream?"

Ha. She didn't get the ice cream. But we stayed up a little late, snuggling and talking. She cried a little more, but slowly calmed down. Then, as she came back from the bathroom right before bed, she squared her shoulders and looked at me. "I can't be sad anymore, mama. I have an audition tomorrow. And that's another opportunity."

If I hadn't already been lying down, I would have fallen down. She's 10, and already has a better head on her shoulders than I do at none-of-your-business-years-old.

She went to that audition with a great attitude and gave it her best. When she came out, she felt happy and confident. Then she said, "If I don't get it, I'll feel sad. But there's always another opportunity."

If she doesn't get into the program she wanted, it won't be because she didn't give it her best. And that's all we can ask of her.

But what do we do if she tries her best and doesn't get in? Do we tell her to work harder? Do we accept that she may not be good enough? I don't want to think about it right now, so we'll cross that bridge if/when we come to it.

But with her positive attitude and determination, even if she doesn't get in, it will probably be much easier for her to deal with than it will be for her mama... and for whatever fool rejects her.

Monday, May 04, 2015

And the Earth keeps spinning

Monday, May 04, 2015 By

Him: "I think we should not see each other anymore."

Her: "Um, I know you're seeing someone else, and you're going to lie about it in perpetuity. So I agree it's for the best that we don't see each other anymore."

Him: "Except if someone you don't even know dies and I need sympathy."

Her: "But that only benefits you. I don't get anything out of that."

Him: "I wasn't looking to give you anything."

Her: "Oh. Yeah, that sounds about right."

Friday, May 01, 2015

My Little Pony is still a better love story than Twilight

Friday, May 01, 2015 By


Emerson: Why are they drinking tomato juice? 

Me: Some people like to drink tomato juice.

Emerson: Like vegetarian vampires?

Me: Yep. Exactly.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Mother's Day is just around the corner

Wednesday, April 29, 2015 By

Augusta, GA. - Emerson just asked me what I wanted for Mother's Day. And she was genuinely confused by my answer.

"How about an expensive bottle of perfume?" "How about an expensive bunch of makeup?" "How about some expensive jewelry?"

First, I was somewhat concerned that the adjective preceding all of those possible gifts was "expensive." That's not something that impresses me... unless you're talking about my salary, amiright, ladies?!

Second, I don't want any of that stuff. I have never really wanted any of that stuff.

If you are looking for something to do for your mother for Mother's Day, I am telling you that the best thing you can do for your mom is to clean her freaking house and do her yard work. Just make her life a little bit easier.

Look, I like jewelry. I like perfume. Sometimes I like makeup - it just depends on the day. But what I like more than anything else is not having to do the dishes. It's not having to weed whack my yard. It's not having to cook dinner. It's not having to scrub the toilet.

What I like more than expensive jewelry and perfume and makeup is the ability to come home at the end of a long day at work and just enjoy my home and my family, and not have to think about all the things around me that need to be done so that I can take care of my home and my family. But, you know, not actually enjoy them.

So, folks, for Mother's Day, here's what your mom wants:
  1. An empty dishwasher
  2. An empty clothes washer
  3. An empty clothes dryer
  4. An empty laundry basket
  5. A full refrigerator
  6. Clean floors
  7. Organized shelves
  8. Mowed lawn
  9. Weeded garden
  10. Clean stove/oven
  11. Dusted surfaces
  12. Sparkling clean toilets
  13. Fed and bathed cats
  14. Clean litter boxes
  15. Wiped-down baseboards
  16. Scrubbed floors

And time. Time for herself, time with her family, time to breathe.

Although, if you don't feel like doing that stuff, she also wants a kayak.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Tell me why I don't like Mondays

Monday, April 27, 2015 By

AUGUSTA, GA. - My morning should have been pretty easy. 
  1. Get Em off to school.
  2. Drive to campus.
  3. Park a mere 50 yards away from the building.
  4. Take an elevator to the third floor.
  5. Unlock my office door.

Simple, right? NOT FOR ME.

  1. Get Em off to school. Done. 
  2. Drive towards campus, see flashing red light, realize I need gas.
  3. Detour to gas station.
  4. Lose argument with debit card swiper.
  5. Go inside to pay for gas.
  6. Wait in line behind chatty older guy just grabbing a cup of coffee.
  7. Laugh as I explain to humorless cashier that I lost an argument to debit card swiper.
  8. Pay for gas.
  9. Go back outside to pump gas.
  10. Gas pump won't turn on.
  11. Press help button.
  12. No attendant responds.
  13. Go back inside to ask attendant to turn on pump.
  14. She insists that I haven't paid for gas.
  15. But I did, two minutes ago. Here is the receipt.
  16. She gets mad at me, because of REASONS. How did I produce this magical receipt of lies?!
  17. Chatty older guy tries to engage me in conversation - DO YOU NOT HAVE SOMEWHERE TO BE, SIR?
  18. Go outside. Wait two minutes while attendant passive-aggressively does not activate pump.
  19. Pump gas. Leave. Mentally flip off cashier.
  20. Fly down the road to campus. Hit no traffic lights. Sweetness!
  21. Pull into parking space.
  22. Run over yellow cone accidentally left in parking space.
  23. Back out of parking space, dragging cone under my car.
  24. Get out of car to dislodge cone.
  25. Student in car pulls up behind me, with perfect view of my behind as I wrangle this fighty cone.
  26. Student driver honks. 
  27. I motion that there is trouble. DOES SHE NOT SEE THAT I AM ON THE GROUND IN A DRESS?
  28. Car driver rolls eyes and pulls around me, honking again.
  29. Car driver is on my growing list of people who must be destroyed.
  30. Get back into car, pull backward until cone dislodges.
  31. Cone now looks like the Sorting Hat from Harry Potter.
  32. Pull car into nearby space.
  33. Place cone at very back of parking space so no one else runs over it.
  34. Student driver passes me, still circling the parking lot for a space. Student driver clearly not a business major capable of doing a cost-benefit analysis, since nearby lot is clearly mostly empty, and she has been circling this smaller, full lot for about 10 minutes.
  35. Walk to building. Do not fall down or get hit by car. A miracle.
  36. Elevator is waiting for me.
  37. Get off elevator. Walk to office.
  38. Where the hell is my office?! 
  39. I'm on the wrong floor. 
  40. Climb stairs to third floor. Walk to office.
  41. Use car key fob to try to unlock office door.
  42. Stand stupidly in hallway while faculty member passes me with a bemused expression as I make this attempt.
  43. Realize my own stupidity.
  44. Unlock office door.
  45. Sit down at computer and breathe. 

Today is still going to be a good day. Because today I did not have to walk two miles to find fresh water. I do not have any funerals to attend. My daughter is healthy and doing well in school, even if she did almost make me cry with her grumpiness this morning. And I have my old friend, caffeine, to get me through the morning. We've been bros since college.

Friday, April 17, 2015

A favorite story from Emerson's younger childhood

Friday, April 17, 2015 By

AUGUSTA, GA. - I've told this story hundreds of times, but I love it, so I'm going to share it again.

We took Emerson down to Disney World when she was maybe 2 years old. She was great the whole trip. No issues.

Except when it came to sleeping arrangements. She insisted on sleeping in the double bed with us. And, as we know, kids turn into their alternate ego - Sleep Ninja - the second they hit Slumbertown. So it was not a great arrangement for us parents.

We got her to sleep one night and then I very slowly Mission-Impossible-d her onto a luxurious pallet on the floor. I got maybe four hours of sleep. At 2:30 a.m., she shot into a sitting position, wide awake.

"Mama! I on da floor, what happen?!"

I laughed and laughed. "Emerson, honey, you were kicking me in the face in your sleep."

She sighed and began crawling back into the bed. "I sowwy, but dis not goeend wort for me."

Guess who slept on the floor the rest of the night.

Not her.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

You don't make any cents

Tuesday, April 14, 2015 By

AUGUSTA, GA - So, funny story, I was at Aldi and putting my cart back. Of course, it requires you to deposit a quarter to get it.

This grandmother is walking up, and she has her toddler granddaughter on her hip. Her hands are full. No way she can reach her purse.

So I stop my cart, gesture to it and say, "Here, take this one. Have a great day."

And she glared at me and yelled, "I have a quarter RIGHT HERE! Whatchoo think, I ain't got a quarter?!"

She scowled at me. For a moment, I considered apologizing or explaining my logic.
Instead, I turned and ran away. Well, I fast-walked away. But still. Yes. I ran from a grandmother and a toddler. Because she yelled at me.
My brain had a snappy comeback and everything: "I think you ain't got ANY cents!" But my jaw clamped shut and my feet took over.
Looking back, it's probably for the best. No need to model terrible behavior for her granddaughter. But wouldn't it be nice to get in a good zinger against the jerks of the world? Just every once in a while?
* In response to inquiries, YES, the pun in the headline was intentional. I did go to college and stuff, y'all. 
** Did the y'all negate the college part of that previous sentence?