Archive for August, 2006

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Quote for the day

August 30, 2006
Today I asked Stealth, "Stealth, why did you just rub peanut butter all over your clothes?"
 
Duck answered.
 
"’Cause that’s what he does best!"

 

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The $150 P

August 29, 2006

You know, just ’cause my life is destined to be this interesting, I submit this little gem.

We got a new roof a couple of weeks ago. It’s a great roof, we’re pleased with the color, pleased with the speed and skill of the crew, loved the contractor (I may very well be the only living breathing human being to ever have uttered such words….) It all seemed like a great deal – at the time.

The bill came and was $150 over the estimate. Not surprising, in fact, we were prepared for this – the crew had to replace several pieces of rotted wood in the roof. This money was to go directly to the crew because of some strange thingamajiggy that really doesn’t matter. $150 of the nearly $3K bill was to go directly to the crew. We pay the contractor, he pays the crew. Okay, fine.

And then B and I took a lovely little walk around our property and found something eye poppingly bizarre.

We have the 2 most beautiful trees in our neighborhood – the most amazing Oak I’ve ever seen in the back yard and a glorious Maple in the front. The work crew used this huge maple as a shade tree during their breaks and during lunch – who could blame them? Apparently, however, one of the crew didn’t manage to get his graffiti fix at the overpass the night before and decided to tag one of the roots of our Maple tree with a P.

Yep, those are roofing nails embedded into the root of our tree. Embedded so deeply, in fact, that attempting to remove them will only do more damage to the tree than is already done.

Sweet!

So the owner of the company came tonight and took one look at the tree and crapped his pants. He cut $150 off our bill for the trauma to Mabel the Maple. That $150 will come out of the crew boss’s paycheck and will, undoubtedly, filter down through the crew.

As for us? We have an extra $150 and a pierced tree.

All I know is that if Mabel had really wanted to rebel, I’d have thought she’d have gone for mohawk or a nipple piercing. Toe bling soooooooo has been done.

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Not all hippies stink alike-

August 28, 2006
Or
 
Why I hate the previous owners of my house with a bloody passion.
 

We have an old house – it needs lots of work.  Old houses *always* need lots of work.  We knew this going in and we were cool with most of what was going on.  We bought the house from some old hippies who were just leaving society to join a commune.  They were actually just going to let the bank foreclose on the house, but we could get it for relatively little money and we were looking for a home, so we grabbed it.

 
We knew it would need a new roof.
We knew the bathroom needed some work.
We knew that basement was only partially finished.
 
We did NOT know that there was a HUGE HUGE HUGE split in the foundation.
Until yesterday.
 
Yesterday morning I walked into the playroom and felt a distinctive *squish.*  The carpet was soaked.  In a place where we had never had water in our basement before.  Lovely.
 
We ripped out all of the carpet (well, my sewing and designing still has carpet it in there for now…) and then took a look at the wall.  B punched a whole in the drywall in the area where the carpet was the wettest and lo and behold, there was a crack.  A large one.  A HUGE one.  It went from the very top of the wall to the floor.  Upon investigation outside (digging up a front flower bed…) we discovered that the crack is all the way through.  yep.  Can see the whole fucking thing from the inside as well as the outside.
 
The kicker?  It has very obviously been patched and re-patched many times and then nicely covered up by fresh drywall. 
 
There was NO mention of this when we bought the place.  Not a fucking word.
 
B and I worked into the way early hours of the morning scraping and scrubbing and bleaching the concrete basement floor.  I work down there.  My kids play down there.  It’s part of our living space.  And it’s screwed all to hell.
 
So now we’re hunting for a company to fix our basement for which we’ll have to take out a loan.  ACES!  Fortunately, we’ll only need to take out a few thousand dollars and that can be accomplished easily enough and we have a great lead on who can do this for us, but SHIT SHIT SHIT.
 
I thought about calling Flower That Smells Like Ass and Sunshine That Fries Your Soul (previous owners,) but that wouldn’t solve anything.  It’s not like I want them to reimburse me with peanut butter and rope sandals. 
 
Man, my kind of hippie just doesn’t do others this way.
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Boomer

August 26, 2006

 Posted by Picasa

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Tipsy, anyone?

August 24, 2006
Okay.  You go to get your hair cut.  The bill is $35.  You’re paying with a check.  To what amount do you make the check?
 
Having dinner?
 
Checking bags?
 
Getting a massage?
 
What about your postman at Christmas?
 
The UPS guy?
 
Your devout dry cleaner who has never once ruined your precious leather pants?
 
 
 
Tipping.  It’s serious business.  I’ve had a large tipping conversation about tipping with my husband recently.  Up until the last few years, he didn’t realize that you tip your stylist.  Now, of course, that’s partly because he went 12 years without a haircut and prior to that, his mother was so desperate to make her hippie son look presentable that she paid the tab for his trims. But SWEET HOLY MOSES, you always *always* tip your stylist – unless you wanna look like Yule Brenner.
 
I once knew a gal who tipped $2, regardless of the bill.  Didn’t matter if she was having coffee or creme brule, swordfish or Shasta.  Now, of course, times have changed and I’m sure she has changed her deal, but I was always intrigued by her tipping style.  Why $2?  Why not $1?  Or $3?  Or $1.78?
We’ve all heard that tipping $.01 (one penny) is the standard symbol for terrible service.  But what about 5%?  Is that significant of bad service or cheap patron?
 
I’ve always been a big tipper.  Always.  But, of course, I’ve worked in food service, in bars, in places where tips made my rent.  I’ve been stiffed on tabs, given phone numbers and drugs for tips (phone numbers are NOT tips, drugs, well, that depends ……)  I’ve also been tipped 200% of the tab.  And I promise, I’ve given the same service to everyone.
 
In this day and age of mortgaging our homes to pay for gasoline and selling our plasma to get good, wholesome, organic foods for our children, tipping is a hot topic.  There’s been a multitude of magazine articles written about it, lots of morning news spots in reference to tipping, and gawd knows Emily Post gave herself carpal tunnel syndrome writing about tipping.  It’s a big deal.  For some people, it’s just extra money.  For others, it’s a place to live.
 
I’ve been enamored with Waiter for the last couple of years.  He has some serious opinions about tipping.  In fact, he was recently on NPR’s Voice of the Nation talking about tipping.  IF you missed it, you can hear the entire segment here.  Maybe it’ll make you think.  Maybe it’ll open your mind.  Hopefully, it will open your wallet.
 
Folks, the people who serve you make next to nothing.  Do you think they wake up every day just dying to wash your dishes or make you that 27th Shirley Temple?  Be generous.  I promise, they’ll give right back.
 
Oh, and for the record, B now tips his stylist.  And he tips well.  Amazing what a threat of a sedative and an electric razor can do to a modern day Samson.
 
 
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It ain’t true

August 24, 2006
what they say about Mothers-in-law.  They really aren’t wretched and evil and conniving and manipulative.  They are not the enemy. 
 
Well, at least mine isn’t.
 
While I do sometimes complain that my MIL is flighty, habitually late, forgetful, and compulsive, the fact of the matter is that those faults pale, possibly even disappear entirely, in comparison to her attributes.
 
Most notably, her desire to spend as much time as humanly possible with my children.
 
Some of my friends never get a free night.  They never have free time away from their children.  Asking for their folks (or inlaws) to watch their children is like asking them to pierce their nipples and drop some acid – it ain’t gonna happen, or if it does, they’ll be paying for it for the rest of their natural lives and probably well into their first few reincarnations as well.
 
My life isn’t quite like that.  Nope.  My MIL calls me asking to keep the kids for awhile.  She and my FIL cannot go much more than a week without seeing the kids.  They go into "withdrawals."  Frequently, they ask if the kids can spend the night.  They have a bedroom set up for my boys and all the necessary kid crap.  I don’t even have to pack a bag.  And, on top of that, 75% of the time they have them, they call and ask if they can have them stay for "just a couple of more hours."
 
Heh.  All that and she brought my man into the world, too.
 
So, folks, lets raise our glasses to our in-laws.  They aren’t as bad as we’d like to make them seem. 
 
Of course, if they really are as bad as we make them seem, raise your glass a few more times.  I swear, nothing looks bad from the bottom of a bottle of Jim Beam.
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I’m so sad

August 22, 2006
School has started again.  That means that my best friend and partner in crime has turned from JP back into Mrs. P.  She’s a teacher and also does home visits in the evening.
 
Put away are our long days of listening to Kid Rock and drinking bourbon and trying on clothes and wayyyyyyyy too much lipstick.
 
At least for awhile.
 
We still have the weekends!