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

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?

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Why you need to get out of my daughter's way and let her do her thing

Wednesday, April 01, 2015 By

AUGUSTA, GA. - My daughter can do anything. Let's just get that out of the way right now. She can fly a spaceship, she can command a warship, she can negotiate peace treaties, she can stay at home with her children full-time, she can minister to the masses, or she can live in a yurt in Mongolia and raise yaks.

I mean, those aren't her ONLY options. Warships or Yaks. But the point is, I don't care what she chooses to do with her life, so long as they are her choices, she isn't hurting herself or anyone else, and she is pursuing her own happiness.

What I do care is that nobody gets in her way with their sexist bullcrap.

Em: "Mom, [person who shan't be named (hereafter "she")] says girls can't do buildings and stuff."

Me: "Do what?"

Em: "Like, construction and making the building plans and being the boss."

Me: "Yes, we can."

Em: "I know! I told her that yes, we can! We can do anything boys can do! But she just said no, we can't. It made me so mad."

Me: "Well, let's remember that she doesn't want to do any of those things."

Em: "Okay, but then maybe she should be more specific about that."

Me: (chuckling) "Maybe."

Or maybe she should go live in a yurt and raise yaks. On the moon.

I can gloss over a lot of things. But hurting my child? No. I will never understand why anyone would willingly choose to put roadblocks in front of a child - even psychological ones. Why create a small voice of doubt where one doesn't exist? Aren't there enough challenges in life?