Wenis Waggler

March 27, 2008

This morning I received the sweetest, most ego inflating email from a reader named Julia B. I usually don't share these emails or reply to them in a public forum, but this letter was so uplifting and so complimentary that I really couldn't help it. Here's a snippet for your reading pleasure:

...I love the way you look at life. Nothing seems stressful to you and you manage to make life's little annoyances seem kind of fun. I think I'd be better off if I could be that like. How do you do it?..

Well Julia, your email leads me to believe that I don't spend enough time writing about the regular dose of crrrAZY I dole out to my husband--because honey, he thoroughly disagrees with your sentiments. In all actuality, life's little stressors make me want to pack up the Blazer, drive to Belize, and take up with the orangutans. Trust me when I tell you: It's a rare moment when I kick up my feet and have a genuine har-dee-har-har at my past due electric bill.

That said, I will readily admit that I am the self proclaimed queen of journalistic spin. In other words, I use this blog to transform my day-to-day humiliation into lighthearted humor. And usually, by the time I press the PUBLISH button, I've actually convinced myself that farting or falling (or whatever else happened that day) actually was a bit funny. How simple minded is that?

Emily Sailers, my all time favorite singer/songwriter, says, "You have to laugh at yourself, because you'd cry your eyes out if you didn't." Let me tell you, I'd give Emily a good old fashioned belly bop if I could, because she's hit the nail right on the head. I don't count my blessings and I don't look on the bright side to cope with the vicissitudes of life--instead, I laugh.

Yesterday for example, an extraordinarily enflamed townsperson walked into my office. Before I even had a chance to shake his hand, he approached my desk and started screaming like some sort of an ape on steroids. I work in the highly controversial field of affordable housing, so outraged citizens are not a rarity, but this gentleman--to put it lightly--was in a league of his own.

I understand people's frustrations with affordable housing, and usually I process the criticism well, but when this man strategically backed me into a corner and topped it off by calling "stupid," I was almost reduced to tears. I'm embarrassed to admit, that for a moment or two, he reigned me in with his slick words and I actually believed him. I believed that I was stupid.

When I felt the tears begin to swell in the back of my eyes, I knew the situation had gone too far. I couldn't allow a disrespectful schmuck to capture my control, I wouldn't let him steal my peace. And that's when I realized that I was certainly not the stupid person in the room.

In order to keep myself from crying, I immediately began to look for a touch of humor in a nasty situation, and thanks be to heaven, it wasn't very hard to find. This jack hole's fly was half way unzipped, and with every wave of his arm and pound of his fist, it opened up a teensy bit more. Tooth by tooth, his zipper was letting go, and if he screamed for long enough his wenis would be waggling around for the whole damn office to see.

He'd say, "STUPID!" And I'd think "What's up wenis waggler?"

He'd yell, "IDIOTS!" And I'd think "Waggle away Mr. Wenis!"


Me: Wenis. Waggler.

I will admit, when I got into my car yesterday afternoon, I put my head on the steering wheel and cried--I am human after all. But before I knew it, my tears had morphed into a snorty sort of laughter, and I was feeling pretty normal. And today, when I look at the situation--thanks to some very intentional spin--I think it's pretty funny.

Typically, the way you react to uncontrollable situations is nobody's choice by your own, so you may as well spin it into whatever you'd like it to be. And that my friends, is my very own, creative definition of freedom.

Erasmus B. Draggin*

March 26, 2008
Yesterday, when I got home from work around 4:15, I realized that Jared and James were out for the night. That meant that for the first time in four months I was home alone with absolutely nothing pressing on my 'big ass to-do list.'** That's not to say that my list of household action items was blank--there was cereal to buy, underpants to fold, a carpet to vacuum--it simply meant that nothing on the list threatened our lives, our limbs, or our credit rating.

So, I did the only thing that any self respecting mother would do--I changed into my most disgustingly worn out pair of sweat pants, I dished up an extra large bowl macaroni and cheese, sprawled my haggard self across the couch, and planned to watch episode after episode of "Designed to Sell" on HGTV. My plan however, was foiled when I fell asleep mid-bite, three minutes after settling onto the sofa.

For the next four hours I proceeded to sleep, and sleep, and snore, and sleep. I finally startled myself awake at 8:05pm when an extra-long, snarfy snore caused the bowl of macaroni and cheese to tumble off my stomach and spill onto my neck.

Unfortunately, that was the last of the mac & cheese. Fortunately, it woke me up just in time to catch the first contestant on American Idol. I was able to fight off sleep for just long enough to critique each of the singers, and then I dragged myself up to bed, hit the pillow like a rock, and didn't emerge until my b****ard of an alarm clock went off at 5:30 this morning.

So what's the moral of this story? Well, it's simple--most moms are tired....really, really tired. An appropriate gift for any mother would probably be a gift certificate to Chuck E. Cheese (with her husband and children's names scrawled across the envelope) attached to a pillow, or a blanket, or any kind of sleeping paraphernalia under the sun. Trust me guys, she'll love you.

Back me up here, moms. Am I right? Or am I right?

*Bonus points to anyone who knows where the title of this post came from.
**I really do have homemade stationary that has that phrase running across the top. Obviously, my coworkers are envious.

Holiday Recap: Extreme Egg Hunting

March 14, 2008

Forgive me for bragging, but I'm pretty much the best egg-hunt planner in the whole entire universe. If you come to my house for Easter you won't find some lame-o setup with eggs dumped all over the lawn, and chocolate bunnies tucked neatly into the bushes. Oh no my friends, at my house you'll find obstacles...big ones.

Yesterday it took a ladder, a screwdriver, a shovel, some work gloves, two helpers, and one hour to construct my masterpiece. Then, after I put all of the tools back in the barn, I let the adults out of the holding pen, discussed the boundaries, and the hunt was on.

Ten or so grown-ups--ranging in age from twenty-one to ninety years--emerged from the kitchen, and paused in the driveway to do a visual scan of the yard. For the first ten seconds, there was silence. My aunts, uncles, and cousins just stood in the yard grasping the handles of their plastic grocery bags, wearing expressions of utter confusion.

Finally, my Aunt piped up. "Amy," she gently laughed. "How are we supposed to get the eggs off the top of the barn? And out of the tops of the trees?!"

I just shrugged my shoulders and happily replied, "That's the fun part. Now get to it!"
"No cheating," I added, as they reluctantly scampered off if a dozen different directions.

I watched with a great sense of satisfaction as a Mormon missionary shimmied up a tree in his formal suit and tie, as my mother cautiously batted at at the gutters with a seven-foot stick, and as the other Mormon missionary (remember, they always come in sets of two) risked electrocution by trying to dismantle an outdoor lighting fixture without the help of tools.

My proudest moment, however, came when my Uncle Bill spotted three candy-filled treasures on the dashboard of my little Toyota station wagon. He tried all four doors, but found each one to be locked---mmmm, too bad. As a last ditch effort he went for the tailgate, and *pop*, it opened right up. Without hesitation, my white-haired uncle crawled through the way back, over the car seat, and stretched his arm just far enough to grab those eggs. His face was distortedly pressed up against the window and he was barely maintaining his balance, but Uncle Bill still paused to give me a thumbs-up through the very foggy glass.

Now that's the kind of spirit and stick-to-itiveness I was hoping for yesterday afternoon.
All in all, it was a wonderful day with the family. Now that the cuts and bruises from Sunday's event have been tended to, I can move on to planning bigger and better events--like James's third birthday party. If you're lucky enough to score an invitation, be sure to plan ahead--it's a BYOH (bring your own helmet) kind of party.

Build Your Own Comment

March 20, 2008

Go ahead and fess up--you're wondering why I haven't commented on your blog in a while. I feel like I can make a bold, blanket statement like that because it's totally true. Well, at least half of that claim is true--I haven't commented on blogs in a darn long time.

I know at least a few of you have taken note of my recent streak of serious slackage. After all, I've received a number of emails pointing out my lack of participation (thanks), my sister-in-law asked me if I was mad at her (no), and my very own mother called me last night to say, "You never comment on my blog anymore." I guess that's the new, softer way of saying, "Don't forget about me when I'm in a nursing home someday."

If you have received a comment from me in the last, oh I don't know, four months, then you might want to paint yourself gold and run around the town square yelping, because you my friend, are the exception. In the next few weeks--once my blogging den is painted, decorated, and inspiring--I hope to resume my previous internet habits. You know--whispering sweet nothings into my laptop's speaker, ignoring the laundry pile as it mildews, and tossing an electrical appliance to my toddler every now and again to keep him happy and occupied.

In the mean time, I'd like to let you know that I've been keeping up with my blog reading as much as I possibly can. To prove it to you, I'm releasing a build-your-own-comment section in response to all of your recent posts. You'll find that it's vaguely reminiscent of the chose-your-own-ending books we adored in elementary school. It's simple to use--just pick one line from section A, section B, and section C, piece them together and *bam,* you've got a comment from my heart to yours. Go ahead and give it a whirl...

Section A
Congratulations on...
I'm sorry about...
Oh! Look at that...

Section B
(s)he's walking...
your recent race time...
your new appliances...
the house...
your significant other...
your rear end...
you're covered in mud...
your weight gain...
your weight loss...
your kid...

Section C
is adorable!
how cute!
is awesome!
is nasty.
that sucks!
look(s) fantastic!
that's priceless!

Ok friends, go hog wild. Play around with those phrases, and I'm sure at least one of the combinations will apply to you. Next time you get the urge to email me about my lack of recent commenting, come back to this post, consider your current circumstances, and rebuild your own. For example:

Oh! Look at that, your significant other sucks!


Wow. Your weight gain looks fantastic!

Call me crazy, but this is the best idea I've come up with in ages. Play along with me guys, which comment applies to you?

Chez Lawson

March 18, 2007

Today is a pretty significant day for the Lawson family. Today, you see, is the day that we finally get to close on our house. It will be a few more weeks before we're actually living in it full time, but that doesn't squelch my excitement even one fraction of an iota. Does it really matter if my new walk in closet smells like a men's locker room? Not to me it doesn't--because this afternoon I get an extra key and a brand new garage door opener to throw into my black hole of a purse. Two more items to lose and find, lose and find, lose and find--it's like the heartbeat of my life.

As you can see by the picture posted in the upper right hand corner, the house could use a coat of paint or four. That's a picture of James's room, and no, don't adjust the color settings on your monitor, it really is that shade of purple. The carpet in basement is also that shade of red, we have more than our fair share of wood paneling to contend with, and last but certainly not least, we found a "well used" pair of men's tighty whities sitting in our fire place. I say, "Dude, if your client sharted his shorts that badly, do us all a favor and light the match--let's turn those underbritches into forgotten history." Seriously, I'm gonna write that on a post-it note, crumple it up into a tiny ball, and roll that message to the seller's agent at the closing this afternoon.

This place is also loaded with some very cool features that I never ever dreamed of having in my very own house. For example:

The tree house is wired for electricity. I hope James enjoys his new wilderness themed room.

There's a bathroom in the basement, which means I will no longer have to mess myself while waiting for my towels to fluff in the dryer.

The house has a workshop in the basement. Finally, Jared will have a place to put his tool (no, that is not meant to be plural).

There are two large picture windows on the front of the house. Lucky for the neighbors, they'll get to see the crack of my a** on a day-to-day basis.

There is also a den for blogging, a garage for parking, a loft with a trap door for jumping out of, a roof for skiing down, a garden for killing, and one front lawn with the full potential to grow as high as my knees. Gosh, we haven't even moved in yet, and I already love this house.

I kind of hate to say this, but we've worked our tails off in the last few years, and I honestly think we've earned ourselves a permanent place to settle in--home sweet home. Also, I'm completely sick of using my brother-in-law's tooth brush. I've made it a priority to unpack my own.
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Turkeys Have Feelings, Too

March 17, 2008

Apparently, it's completely possible to scare the shi-tang-tang right out of a turkey. They also know how to fly. Who knew?

Yesterday I was driving on a back country road in Maine. James was strapped securely into his carseat, and we were cruising down the road listening to what is, quite possibly, the greatest song of all time--What It Takes, by Aerosmith. James was staring out the window, composing a verbal inventory of the sights and sounds: twactoh, bawn, moo cow, cah on byocks, etc. (translation: tractor, barn, moo cow, car on blocks, etc.) while I sang to the music and daydreamed of heaven.

More specifically, I was thinking, "When I get to heaven, instead of angels playing harps I'm going to request the Indigo Girls playing this song, for ever and ever and ever..."

As we came around a snowy bend, I was met with a sight that left my jaw hanging wide. It was a long row of turkeys--at least seven or eight of them--flying over the road. Apparently, turkeys aren't much for soaring into the sunset, because these birds were flying about six feet above the pavement.

There was a parade of traffic behind me, so slamming on the breaks was completely out of the question--because seriously, I'd rather have a dead bird to contend with than a Ford F150 Long Bed Crew Cab wedged into my back seat. I simply held my breath and drove straight toward the rainbow of flying gobblers, hoping all the way that one of those monstrosities didn't get it's feedbag thingy stuck in the ski rack on the top of my Toyota.

I closed my eyes for a split-second, anticipating the moment of impact, and was relieved when I never heard any kind of a *thud.* Much to my relief, I didn't open my eyes to find a cartoon turkey with Xs for eyes limply sprawled across my hood. Instead, I found my windshield covered in a turkey poop or two...or four.

I literally scared the shitoodles right out of those ugly birds.

Welp, there's another line item to cross off of my master list of life goals.

This One's for the Moms

March 13, 2007

The comments from yesterday's post have an overarching theme of consistency. "You need to be consistent with your kid," wrote one reader, "or they'll think you're full of bullcrap." I couldn't agree more, consistency is key, particularly when it comes to the good old fashioned timeout--or watching SpongeBob SquarePants every night at six o'clock. But what do you do when you issue a handful or warnings and dozens of timeouts every day and your kid still continues launch plastic hand-tools at your eye sockets? I see several options:

1) Glue your kid's a** to the timeout chair (not recommended).
2) Get a part-time job (my approach).
3) Take cover behind double paned glass (Jared's approach--please call him on his cell to discuss your associated concerns).
4) Drink (also not recommended).
5) Send up a prayer of gratitude for a beautiful child who is developmentally on-track, read him 'The Hug Book' before bed, and scrapbook all about the tender teaching moment the two of you shared (now that's a load of bum fluff).
6) Drink (I'm beginning to lighten my views on this issue).
7) Hire a babysitter and peel out of the driveway so fast that it makes her little, adolescent head spin. Proceed--with haste--to any local restaurant, and laugh your guts out over an extra cheesy platter of Nachos Grande (highly recommended).

I would also like to point out that James is consistent in many, many ways. For example, the kid has been pooping in a diaper, every day, for almost three years. Despite our adamant attempts to curb this behavior, James continues in his ways and shows no signs of stopping.

Also, for the last few months, every time we ask James what color he would like us to paint his new room, he gives the very same answer--"triangle." We've explained to him, time and time again, that triangle is not a color, it's a shape. James won't hear of it. He simply waves us away and gives us a look that says, "I don't care if it's not a color. Find a way to pull it off you simple-minded peasants!"

He must have gotten his tendency toward resolve and consistency from somewhere, right? His parents' example perhaps?

He goes to bed every night at eight. He eats a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for lunch EVERY SINGLE DAY!! He naps at noon. He says his prayers. He NEVER MISSES A NIGHT OF TEETH BRUSHING!!!! For the love of all things pure and holy, please tell me that I'm not an INCONSISTENT MOTHER! I'm like the Captain firggin' Von Trapp of mothers everywhere!!!!!
Fine, that last part was a lie, but I'm hanging on by a thread here.

I love to make fun of those washy-washy-push-over moms who find themselves on Super Nanny--they boost my self esteem, bless their haggard little souls. I certainly don't want to become one of them--because seriously, where would I find my source of self worth? From within? I don't think so.

I'm melting into a big ol' heap of Britney Spears over here, can you tell? If I could dance half as well as that woman I'd probably feel a lot better right now. But guess what!? I get tripped up doing the electric slide.

Go ahead and don't worry about leaving a "you're such a good mom" comment, because really, I'm pretty confident in my parenting. Read this post, and if you're a mom, a dad, a kid, or any kind of human being who has ever had a mother, remember that motherhood is the most challenging and most important job on the planet. We all second guess ourselves from time to time, and we should all cut ourselves a well deserved break and proceed with confidence.

Chances are, you're doing a great job as a mother. I know I am.

I am, right?

Wasn't Me!

March 12, 2008

James has a new trick up his sleeve, and I'm not sure if I should blame it on the fact that Jared is a stay-at-home-dad or on the fact that James is a male. In the long run, I suppose the reason for the behavior doesn't matter so much. The truth is, my kid has a hitting problem and it seriously needs to stop.

Yesterday, when I walked in the door from work, instead of being met with a joyful, dramatic hug like I usually am, I got sucker-punched. As soon as James heard the door creak open he bolted down the hallway, arms flailing like a man on fire, and greeted me with a big, fat whack to the side of the head.

I'm thoroughly embarrassed to admit that this problem is not limited to hitting and punching. In recent days it's expanded to pushing, head butting, and body slamming as well. When I brought the issue up with Jared, he simply added:

"Oh, I know! You should have seen him this afternoon. He was outside, hitting the car with a stick over and over and over for like FIVE MINUTES STRAIGHT!"

"Oh my gosh," I replied. "Why'd you let him do it for that long? He's gonna knock all the rust off the side of the Blazer and we'll have nothing left to drive!"

"I tried to stop him, but he couldn't hear me through the window."

I have to admit, it took me a moment to process that line. It's turns out that Jared gets James all dressed up in his winter woolies and sends him into the harsh New England elements to play while he sits inside, watching our two-year-old through the window. My husband knocks, smiles, waves, and gives our little buddy the occasional thumbs up while he sits inside and snacks on gumdrops and saltines. How very manly.

I wrapped up our brief lesson on the basics of appropriate parenting by saying, "The bottom line is this: When James hits, you've got to tell him that it's not nice, even if you have to unlock and open the window to do it. And if he doesn't listen, he gets a time out. It's that simple!!!"

Later that night, James did it again. I refused to give my toddler hot fudge for supper, so he wound up and walloped me in the side of the leg. I've got to say, Jared was right on it with the discipline. He put a very serious look on his face, pointed to the dreaded time-out chair and said, "One more time an you'll sit in that chair for three minutes straight."

And without pausing for a flash, James picked up his florescent-pink teddy-bear, used it to smack Jared in the gut and said, "I not do it. Da bear hit you. Et was da bear." I don't know how many timeouts we had last night, but I do remember being assaulted by Lightening McQueen, a pull-along duck, and a stuffed pony. I was also bitten by a picture of my mother--very unfortunate.

If you have a good military school suggestion, go ahead and leave it in the comments. Thanks.

Hopes and Dreams

March 10, 2008

Every now and then, when things start to feel a bit stressful, Jared and I like to share a Wayne's World moment. Just like Garth and Wayne, we lie on the hood of our car and discuss the deeper meaning of life. And usually, within five minutes, we come to the conclusion that humans were put on this planet for the express purpose of having ridiculous amounts of wholesome fun. Feeling renewed and refreshed with our healthy dose of joint revelation, we slide off the hood and run inside to watch cartoons. What can I say? We make a good team.

This weekend, our Wayne's World moment was strikingly different than it's been in years. First and foremost, we don't live in Texas anymore. Instead of scalding our rears on black Blazer paint and slipping around on sweaty thighs, we were wrapped in layer upon layer of clothing--long johns, knees socks, boots, hoods, hats, mittens, the works. With the exception of our eyes, nose, and mouth, not a single inch of skin was showing.

Between the howling wind and the double-covered ears, it was almost impossible to hear one another. So there we sat, staring at the clouds, screaming at each other like senior citizens, and freezing our delicate little facial features off. And somehow, in the midst of our conversation, the direction changed from our regular 'meaning of life' topic to lofty, personal dreams--not goals, but outright dreams.

I listed mine off in rapid order: climb Mt. Everest, jump an RV (the same way you jump a dirt bike), serve a humanitarian mission in Africa, and eat a pizza in Naples. I know these dreams well, as they're written in my Daytimer right next to the list of people I'd make out with even though I'm married (1. Michael Buble, 2. Curtis Stone, and 3. Will Smith).

Jared listed his off almost as quickly: heli-ski in Alaska, fly fish in Labrador, and sew somebody to a couch.

After he listed his dreams, I paused for a moment to take them all in. And then, when I finally spoke up, the following conversation ensued:

A: What was the third one? I thought you said 'sew somebody to a couch.' But I'm having a hard time hearing.

J: Yeah, that's what I said. A mattress would be okay, too.

A: Oh my word. Seriously Jared? That's disgusting!

J: No it's not! I want to find a sleeping person and sew their clothes to the couch. That way, when they try to get up they can't. They'd be sleepy and confused, and it would be all around awesome.

[thoughtful pause]

A: Jared. That's like the best idea I've ever heard. I don't see why we can't make that dream come true.

And for the next thirty minutes, we listed off the names of our friends and family, trying to decide who sleeps deeply enough to transform a young man's dreams into reality. Jared's family has a bit of a love affair with Ambien, but I've seen the wrath of my father-in-law and there's NO WAY IN HELL I'm sewing a loved one to that man's couch (what's up Robb?!). My family might have the humor to support that type of stunt, but they sleep lighter than a puff of fairy dust and love their furniture like it's a third child.

However, after much deliberation I'm happy to say that we've settled on a short list of loved-ones who would be perfect subjects for this stunt. I'm also happy to say that I'm no longer stressed about moving into our house, now I'm just really, really excited. I'm especially looking forward to weekend visitors.

It Was Bound to Happen

March 6, 2008

I knew I'd get it one of these days--an email from a reader letting me know that my recent stories sound far too outrageous to be true..."Dogs on your desk? Drag queen hairdressers? Vasectomy stories? I'm sorry," wrote the reader, "but this is getting kinda hard to believe. Funny, but hard to believe."

Every couple of I months I get a doubter, and I was long overdue. To be quite honest, I can't say I disagree with the concerned party, these stories are wild. Please know that the elevated crazy factor is partly due to the lens through which view the world--I look for (and tend to exaggerate) the humor in everything--and partly due to my location in arsty-fart New England.

In previous posts I've described this place as "off-beat." And that, my friends, is a glorious understatement. If you could hop on a plane tonight and attend the weekly Karaoke Sing-Off and Talent Hour in the basement of the UU Church, you would totally see what I mean. How that woman can play the xylophone with four mallets while she nurses her infant is something that I will never understand. Let's face it, I was barely coordinated enough to eat a sprinkle donut and watch the Simpsons while I nursed.

If you're not from around here, you simply won't believe the things I see on a regular basis. For example, yesterday I saw a fisherman wearing hip waders having coffee with a shirtless guy with a boa constrictor wrapped around his neck. I should note that I have a wicked case of the hots for any man sporting rubber fishing pants and I'm completely repulsed by snakes, so the two men sort of cancelled each other out. They were a very odd looking pair, but they've probably been friends for years.

And then, of course, there's the hair salon with the stripper pole--for every minute you dance, you get one dollar off of your hair cut. You can dance for up to five minutes and your clothes must stay on because, duh, it's a family hair salon! I've never been inside of the place, but I love to walk by on my lunch breaks. Every once in a while, I have the privilege of watching a local resident who's too cheap to maintain their dignity. One time I saw a man in a flannel shirt who was holding the stripper pole with one hand while he danced like Pinocchio--the puppet, not the boy. Another time I saw an elderly woman doing the hokey-pokey while the stylists gathered 'round and offered encouraging applause.

Apparently it was no easy task for the shop owner to obtain a license for his window-front stripper pole. After a great deal of convincing, his pole is now up-to-code and open for use. As a token of gratitude, he still brings small gifts to the town employees every now and again. Most recently? Single serve packets of glow-in-the-dark hair gel for everyone.

Heaven help us all. And I'll say it again--Heaven help us all.

I can't lie, I love being here. After all, every single day brings a series of new adventures. And the restaurants are nothing to sneeze at either. But in a few weeks I'll be moved to a different office in the region, where things are far more, uhhh, regular? I'll miss the adventure of it all, but lately I feel like it's turned my blog into a shock-jock Howard Stern publication--at least to the Mom crowd.

In the next little bit I'll be happy to return to my previous level of Mormon risqué-ness. A happy PG rating if you will. You know--farting, homecrafted swear-replacement, recaps of spousal disagreements, and coworkers who spit when they talk. Well, at least I'm hoping for something as funny as a spitting cubemate.

But in the mean time, I'll just continue on with daily mantra..."We're not it Texas anymore, James. We're certainly not in Texas."

Mr. Giggles

March 4

Here's what I would like to know: When did it become socially acceptable to bring dogs inside of buildings? You know...shopping malls, restaurants, schools, town hall, et cetera.

I'm a dog owner myself, so it's not as though I have a problem with the canine species, I'm just shocked with the sheer volume of these creatures. It used to be that every now and again you'd see some crazy lady pushing her dog--who happened to be dressed like Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz--through Costco in a baby stroller. But lately, this dog-inside-of-buildings phenomenon has simply exploded.

I honestly think I've seen more dogs at town hall in the last week than I've seen on the Animal Channel. They've ranged from a Yorkie in a hand bag, to a hot dog wearing a cable knit sweater, to a Bull Mastiff whose tail had the same circumference as a coffee can. Usually, I think it's funny when Alex the Poodle trots by my desk, but today I really wasn't feeling the fluffy love.

Around nine o'clock this morning, a very stinky lady came into my office with a very stinky Chihuahua. If you want me to be quite honest, I thought the dog was straight-up repulsive, but in an effort to maintain my reputation as a loving human being I looked at the animal and said something goofy like, "Hi little guy." Well, apparently this creature was very interested in making new friends, because in one half of one second I found him sitting in my lap, horrible breath and all. As my cube-mate doubled-over in laughter, the Chihuahua hopped from my lap to my desk, and stood there happily as his owner conducted business with the permit coordinator.

I swear to high-heaven that Mr. Giggles (or whatever his name was) just stood on my stack of file folders and stared me in the face for several long minutes. I can lie, he really was entertaining. I wonder if he thought my co-worker and I were entertaining, too, with our periodic comments like, "I bet that I could fit in my file drawer." and "Are you afraid of heights?" and "I wonder if you would like to try flying."

Later in the day, I received a call from the state--a call I've been waiting for since two Tuesday's ago. Four minutes into our conversation, the noise level in our office was so elevated that I had to put my caller on hold and investigate the source of the ruckus. I don't know what I expected to find--a middle aged man who had fallen into quicksand, perhaps? But no, no. It was actually a basset hound and a bull dog who were engaged in all-out ruff n' tumble war in the lobby.

I guess I can't blame those dogs. If some one sniffed my rear while I was waiting in line for a building permit, I would have cause a commotion, too.

Which is the Worst?

March 3, 2008

Question of the day: Which of these scenarios is the worst?

A. Being cornered by a small mob of fire-spitting, venom-breathing, angry townspeople all asking questions that you don't have the slightest idea how to answer.


B. Hearing the intimate details of your 61-year-old coworker's vasectomy including, but not limited to: the surgical process, swelling, discoloration, and level of satisfaction with the ultimate result. Unfortunately, the presentation included a great deal of pointing and a hand-drawn diagram.


C. The inability to fasten your fat pants without losing a button.

No question in my mind, I'm voting for scenario B. It's rare that I lose my appetite, but today my friends, my desire to eat is nowhere to be found. Hopefully it will help with situation C.

So go ahead and cast your vote in the comments. I'm anxious to know if we're all in agreement on this one.