PlazaJen: Passion Knit

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Back in the Saddle

There truly is nothing like starting your day with your annual well-woman exam. I had mine today, bright & early, and everything went fine. I just always hear the song "Back in the Saddle" when I get into those stirrups....

I felt like I was reaching middle-age, because I took my little notebook in and had a whole list of things to run through/check off. It was a good thing I had my list, because the office was in a STATE OF CHAOS. Apparently the lab phlebotomist's last day was yesterday, and the lab was supposed to send over a NEW phlebotomist (and I love to use the word phlebotomist, just so ya know) but they weren't there yet? And so the doctors' nurses had to do the blood draws, but the one doctor (the one who was snooty and mean to me once, and who has signs all over advertising that she can give you Botox, that woman, the one I'll never go to unless I have a four-foot spear piercing my torso & coming out the other side, she is JUST that much of a bitch), yeah, that doctor's nurse? She doesn't DRAW blood. (I am so not surprised.) So my doctor's nurse was doing all the blood draws, and my doctor came out to get me & did all the nurse-type stuff like measure me, take my temp, etc.

So that was good, because we actually got more time to run through my list and whatnot, and get me my prescriptions and thingermabobbers before I went off to get my blood drawn, and there was a phlebotomist on the scene! But this phlebotomist was not going to be the regular phlebotomist, she will be training the new phlebotomist, and I was disappointed because this girl? Could draw blood like nobody's business. I praised her. I didn't even require she use a baby needle, which is my usual m.o. ever since the crack-addict phlebotomist went crazy on my arm several years ago and I almost passed out when I took a gander at what she was doing. Nobody should see medical instruments jabbering around UNDER YOUR SKIN. I'm just saying. In case you, junior phlebotomist-wannabe, are studying up on your skeelz and want a free tip from Blogland. It's just not a good idea.

(I know for a fact my husband is curled into the fetal position from having read this blog. Sorry, honey. JWo not so much on the needles. I'm brave. And proud, like dog show.)

And the rest of the day has FLOWN. But I don't recommend starting out in the stirrups every day. (Unless that's your thing...hey..... we're non-judgemental here.)
posted by PlazaJen, 4:15 PM | link |

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Like a Fine Stilton.....Crumbling at the Edges....

My brain is feeling a little fried right now. Actually, crumbly. I can't quite keep straight what day it is, and I could have fallen asleep during the last rep meeting I had. I'm going back to the doctor tomorrow for all the fun annual stuff (and I say "fun" in the same way I'd describe having your shoulder dislocated as "fun".) But I'm also going back because even though I'm better? I'm not better, and I'm still coughing at night. So so tired of that. All these teenagers, with their three weeks of hiccuping or two weeks of sneezing, let's talk about SIX weeks of the most irritating cough, and no, I don't smoke. But who gets the press coverage? Who's got a unique, wacky situation? The blasted teens.

So I'm really excited about the presentation I'm about to go into - because Kristin somehow thinks I might lose my mind and try to fight someone. I think there are better (and more likely) candidates for that job around these parts, including one person who just informed me that the smell of patchouli makes her "crazy". Makes her "wanna fight". I said it was like her own special catnip. (The aforementioned rep was wearing some scent that smelled like a combination of Lysol and Patchouli. Lychouli?) And Kristin? Let's talk about how both times we've gone to Half Price Books at lunch, she's had her Special Friend parked in the crafts section, talkety-talk-talk-talkin' and what are the odds of that? I don't have a Special Friend at the Half Price Books. And, I don't think I'm going to get into a fight today, mainly because I like to stay employed, but also because I seem to have been shot by a tiny blowdart filled with tranquilizers and psychedelic mushrooms, and I get to spend the afternoon swimming through the corn syrup of my mind. Or cheese. Whatever metaphor I'm going with at the moment.

OH but I will say, if I ruled the world, we would know who Dannielynn's daddy was, there'd be no more of this court bullcrap, Anna Nicole would be buried by now, and we would all just ignore Britney, including the paparazzi, until her hair is once again shoulder-length. Naturally. My apologies to my friend Cindy who has given up celebrity gossip for Lent. Must lie down. Now. THAT'S gonna look 100% classy when they roll through on the tour.......


posted by PlazaJen, 2:53 PM | link |

Monday, February 26, 2007

Clearly A Fraud

So, last Thursday I had my one-month follow-up eye exam to the Lasik Experience, and because my appointment was at 9:45, I found myself with a little time before I had to be at the doctor's office. Since the carwash line was OOC (at 9:15! What do all these people do? There was a police officer directing traffic! 9:15! On a Thursday!), I decided to go to the grocery store. I needed to get a few ingredients to pump up the guacamole I was taking to Kristin's, and then something random for the agency potluck lunch on Friday. It was a fast trip, and I headed for the discover that they've replaced several lanes with Self-Checkout and I admit it, I hate those things. Especially if I have more than five items. There's too much hecticness & rushing involved, plus, I'd rather have some interaction with a human being, because there's so much more opportunity to get the Blog Fodder..... And I've been going to this Price Chopper for several years, and they seem to retain a lot of their workers - I spotted the nicest bagger in the universe (Clarence) and headed for his lane. I found myself behind a woman who was wearing her matchy-matchy track suit, a lot of makeup, and she was going for the Casual Housewife from Leawood look. (Leawood being a nice affluent community just over the hill.) Except instead of an iPod, she had one of those big radio stereo earphones on. All of this wasn't notable, except I had plenty of time to notice her once it came time for the cashier to ring up her coupons! Because every other one went "BAAAAAARRRRRRNNNNNNNNTTTT" and was rejected by the computer. And she kept pretending to be Just Now Noticing! and was very dismissive, kept saying, "Can't you just give it to me?" "They usually just give it to me." He asked her if she'd bought two of the item on the coupon. "Two? No. I bought just one. Can't you just give it to me anyway?" Same thing with another. Did you buy five? "Well..... I'm sure I bought at least four. Can't you just give me the coupon? They always give it to me." This continued, involving a manager (twice) and I watched, somewhat agog, that this poser was committing COUPON FRAUD! Right in front of everyone! She even tried to catch my eye, as if to enlist support against the Ridiculousness! she was enduring. Oh mah god. I told the cashier he handled it well, for what it was worth. Since I had NO coupons, my transaction went quite quickly, and I was able to see what car she was driving - I expected a Suzuki Samarai, for some reason - nope, a PT Cruiser. I decided instead of "Lovely in Leawood", she was more "Roughshod in Raytown".

But, the really good news of the day? I have 20/20 vision, both near & far. (Who else immediately thinks of Grover when you hear "Near and Far" together?) And I even read some of the 20/15 letters. It's like magic. Really, really expensive magic. Even with a coupon.


posted by PlazaJen, 3:09 PM | link |

Friday, February 23, 2007

On Grief

I excerpted this from an email I wrote a friend who recently lost a parent. I realize it's somewhat overwhelming to read - but so is grief, in the early stages. I'm still finding and defining my own path, and even when I'm further from the center, and the path has been longer, it will always be the path that's under my feet. It never leaves us.

.....The thing is, I know it takes time. Everyone who's gone through it says it, consistently, so my logic says, ok, they might be right. But it doesn't help the current moment, when it feels like someone's ripped all the skin off your chest to scrabble at your heart, and when your brain feels like it's been put through the blender and then being whipped into a froth with all the things that rush through our minds. Mine just clicked right back on to "puree" with the latest stuff. But I'm at least getting better at controlling that, being firm with myself and telling myself to STOP. (You're not at that point. Keep weeping.) I'm just so sorry. All those horrid emotions and they just always feel like vomit to me, but I can't ever be RID of them.

I feel sometimes like this is a goddamn bitch of a journey, where you get picked up by the hand of "God" who sort of clenches you in a big giant crushing fist, and drops you into the middle of the darkest forest. And even though you're injured and bleeding and crippled, you have to find the path, and then try to travel on the path, and there are people who show up from time to time, and help you, but YOU have to walk it, even if both your ankles are broken and you're blinded from having your face squeezed so hard. It does help knowing there are other people on this path, and sometimes you resent them because they didn't have (to deal with) who inherited everything, or because they had years and years to prepare for this journey, and yet, even if it's not as bad, or big, or just obvious, everyone here's injured. Everyone's struggling in their own way, and the path is not level, it is not safe, it is not anything you'd expect from such a WELL-TRAVELED path! I feel, in my gigantic mental metaphor, that I am not that far from the center of the forest, and I hear you, and I am so sad that you, too, got picked up and dropped in here, and part of me is grateful for the company, and then sometimes part of me looks at (a friend who went through something similar), because she appears once in a while, and reminds me that I can get beyond the spot I'm standing on today. Even if my leg's broken. Yet again, another thing that heals broken bones is time, too. I don't know if any of this helps, but it's the first time I've ever articulated my deep-in-the-forest vision, and I hope it makes some semblance of sense. And even with my gimp-ass state, I can help you, and listen, to do whatever I can. In my mind's eye, we never get out of the forest? But it's supposed to get more dappled. More sunshine and open clearings.

(edited for clarity/anonymity of referenced people.) And thanks to all of you who keep helping me on this path. My biggest internal struggle is just wanting to run away from it, to get OFF it, and that leads nowhere good. Everyone's journey is different. I'm trying to head towards where I think the sunshine is....


posted by PlazaJen, 1:33 PM | link |

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Glove Love, Baby

So, last week, I was sick sick sick still, waiting for my horse-pill sized antibiotics to start scrubbing the badness out of my lungs, and I even stayed home from Knit Night, in hopes of speeding my recovery along. While I was home on Thursday night, I started a pair of gloves - something I'd always thought about making but hadn't gotten around to actually doing! I've made fingerless gloves, which were fine and all, but not really GLOVES. And boy, they're fun. Just like with sock knitting, I knit the wrist & palms at the same time (on two circs), and then went to individual knitting when it was time to do the fingers & thumbs. I finished them on Saturday! Here's a photo:

Koigu gloves

I knit them out of Koigu Kersti, a merino crepe wool, absolutely lurvely, purchased at the Studio a while back, and just perfect for gloves. I didn't use all of the yarn from each skein, and was glad I still had some leftover when I decided one thumb was too short & I ripped it out and re-knit it. I adapted the pattern found on Knitty - which left two fingers open for smokin' a cigar, and of course, I wanted full-finger-coverage, so I basically just kept on going and followed the directions for the fingers that were knit in full, not the knuckle-only-bind-off part. (This may read quite confusing-ly. Sorry.) I knit the gloves on size 2 circs, and used 1.5 DPNs for the fingers. (Cause I'm a loose knitter.) They were great for the snow & cold wind - aaaaand now it's 60-degrees. But I have fabulous, custom-fit gloves that, when I put the first one on, I marveled and said without thinking, "Why look at that! They fit like ..... a glove." (Groan!)


posted by PlazaJen, 3:14 PM | link |

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

goddamn autoflushers.

I believe in siestas. I've never lived or worked anywhere that allowed for them (well, college, I suppose, but that was a completely different state of affairs, mostly inebriated). Today, I felt myself drooping and sagging after lunch (and feeling a bit carsick on top of that, go figure, since I'm driving a DESK.) So I retreated to the only place nobody will burst in on you: the restroom. I always try to frequent the handicapped stall, because you can rest your elbow on one of the metal bars, and slouch your face into your hand and sort of get all stupor while you sit there & hope nobody else comes in and you have to busy yourself up like you're actually, well, doin' some bidness.

But, alas, it's not just the squeak of the door and the click of a co-worker's shoes on the tile to wrench you out of that glorified state. We have the autoflushers on our toilets. Which I've talked about before, and unfortunately, they seem to be on HIGH ALERT for potential non-flusher users. I was in the restroom for under 6 minutes, doing NOTHING, and the toilet auto-flushed no less than 10 times. Whether it's the light reflecting off my shirt, or the settings, or what, I don't know what it is that makes it so flush-happy. But it really interferes with trying to catch a moment of peace, let me tell you right now.

So, I'm drinking more Diet Coke to get myself peppy & caffeinnated.....and, as we all know, the more we drink? The more we have to pee. Sigh. Me & the autoflusher. Friend? Enemy? Both?
posted by PlazaJen, 2:02 PM | link |

Sunday, February 18, 2007

If You Look Really Closely Behind My Right Ear, You'll See The Hole

If you watch Grey's Anatomy, you know how grisly it is to have a drill applied to your head to relieve the pressure. I'm not sure when exactly it happened, but at some point along the way, I had a similar hole drilled into my brain, and things have been falling out.

I give you this: I was looking for some solid sock yarn to do the Bayrische socks (our knitsters here are doing a knit-along), and I ran across a complete. pair. of socks. For JWo! I don't remember knitting them, I don't know why I didn't give them to him as soon as they flew off the needles, but there they were - a whole pair of socks, waiting to be worn. I felt a little crazy, but I gave them to him (Look! Magic socks! Right out of thin air!) and of course, it's great timing for wool socks, what with the weather heading for 60 this week. Hm. So maybe I should start scooping up some of that brain matter & stuffing it back in, plug up the hole with some random roving, and get ready for Spring. Otherwise I'm going to have a bird's nest on my head & shopping for groceries in a golf cart.

Hope springs eternal, and I'm ready for hope. And not discovering any more pairs of socks.
posted by PlazaJen, 4:28 PM | link |

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Weary Hearts

posted by PlazaJen, 9:46 AM | link |

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Cough Syrup + Hydrocodone = Whoa.

So, after one full week of the meds my doctor gave me, absolutely nothing had changed. I called, and they responded quickly, phoning in what now appears to be a turbo-strength antibiotic and the heavy-duty cough syrup product (complete with its own syringe for dosing!) I was optimistic, but woke again at midnight, coughing. So I took another dose of the cough syrup. And today I feel like an elephant fighting off the fourteen tranquilizer darts that have pierced my hide. I was listening to Allison Krauss on my iTunes and that wasn't helping, so I've switched over to some pop/dance and we'll see if I can make it through the day. Holy Toledo. I think my body and brain are all "Hey, YO we just got 7 hours of sleep and we need MORE. NOW." Speaking & forming sentences feels like a ginormous challenge.

My apologies for not having more to write about, but I'm in a total stupor. I've warned those around me I might need to lie down on the floor. And? I have a haircut at lunch today? Given how the hair dryer always makes me super sleepy on my good days, it's going to be a real struggle to not pass out. Hopefully I'll make it through the day without drooling on myself.
posted by PlazaJen, 9:30 AM | link |

Wednesday, February 14, 2007


OK, I'm going to post more substantive things soon - didn't realize I'd been not-posting for uh, two days. That fact alone points out to me that I've been preoccupied, distracted, on top of being sick for....mmm.....exactly four weeks. It's an erratic sort of sick, with coughing that usually surfaces at night - when I'm trying to sleep. So I haven't had a full night's sleep in 28 days, except that one night last weekend where I did make it all the way to 5 a.m. I'll count it as good only because I'm raw & desperate. Now I think I'm getting a cold on top of all of this, so there's nothin' but good times ahead here. Because it's going to be FREEZING here for a few more days, and I'm having flashbacks to my Minnesota years! We did get about 5" of snow & I took a few pictures yesterday morning. Here are my three favorites, the rest are over on Flickr.

Snow-mobile 2


This one jumped out at me after I uploaded it - I love the spot of red from the fire hydrant across the street!
Spot of Red

More soon, peeps. And happy brand-new-baby birthday to Bekah! She's being induced today!
posted by PlazaJen, 8:59 AM | link |

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Live Blogging: The Grammys

OK, I've been watching this show all night, and was driven to liveblog when the Red Hot Chili Peppers hit the stage. It was like their geriatric dopplegangers had taken over. Hey-Oh, not really the Song-Oh to whip everyone up, my friends. Don't get me wrong. I LURVE the RHCP. And they can have their slow-em-down-catch-a-breath ballads, but fellas, this is not representative of y'alls. OK. They just won and yay for them. Back to the performance: Freschie cut his hair & yodeled a bit too high but let me just say something to the producers of the Grammys and their ideas of cool: THERE IS SUCH A THING AS TOO MUCH CONFETTI. Seriously. The standing-up and swaying crowd (and let me point out once again, that is not, nor should it be, the typical RHCP crowd reaction) was actually getting annoyed with the buckets of white paper being dumped. And Queen Latifah just extracted some from her cleavage. 'Nuff said. I stayed up for you guys and I just didn't get what I expected. Sigh.

In other highlights: Kudos to the little cutie who won & got to perform with Justin T. She was dynamite and held her own as much as anyone could with the consummate performer. I loved the little interview clip with JT where he said "What Goes Around" was about A FRIEND. Ha! Nobody believes you honey, but you do try to be a gentleman, don't you. It only makes you cuter.

WTG Dixie Chicks, repeatedly winning on an album that undoubtably cemented the Great Right Dislike of you. And I actually found Mary J. Blige endearing. Xtina Aggalaggaboomshackalackalackalara needs to avoid the excessive spray-on tan: it does not match the skin showing in the part of her hair, and in fact, is a frightening shade of orange.

Wha? Scarlett Jo is recording an album? Egads. Will she be sucking Justin's face after the show? Hi, that exchange between SJ and Don Henley: awkward city. Here we go. Album of the Year. (I figure I'll just finish out the night here.) Hm. I'd like Gnarls Barkley to win something. Oh, it's quite a filled category. Oh come on, Justin. You can win it sweetie. Nope. Dixie Chicks again. I think Natalie M is afraid to speak. Dude, they have the biggest hippie in their band. Nat, well-spoken. I believe this was a rewarding & at the same time, humbling, experience for them.

Whatever you think, the great thing is, you can say it.

This was kind of fun to do. Can't imagine how enormous this post would have been had I done it for 3.5 hours! Maybe I'll start practicing so I can work up to the biggie: Oscar.

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posted by PlazaJen, 10:14 PM | link |

O Happy Day......

I went to Bangkok Pavilion last week for lunch; they have a Thai buffet & it was quite tasty. (Thom Yum soup from heaven!) So the Wo & I decided to give their weekend lunch buffet a go, and boy howdy, were we ever delighted. It was like going home. We walked in the door & I immediately spotted one of the women from the now-defunct (but dearly loved) Thai 2000. (Previous adoring posts on Thai 2000 can be found here, here and here.) Sure enough, the sisters from Thai 2000 were there, and this was the first weekend the restaurant was trying out the authentic brunch.

We almost fell over from the sheer happiness of it all. James kept asking me if I knew and was keeping it as a surprise. (Nope!)

I will say that the food had less spice, and that will probably help it appeal to a wider contingency. They have all the spice condiments so you can make your own degree of heat, which is nice. I was actually able to eat two bowls of Chicken Curry Soup, and before could only get through half a bowl, due to the amount of flaming hot spice in it. I had the traditional pork-noodle appetizer, and one of the workers told me I was eating it just like an authentic Thai person would. (With a spoon. Go me!) By the time we left, the place was hopping, skewing heavily to an Asian dining population, which again, is usually a good sign. The service was excellent, and I know we'll be going back again soon. It was great to discover it this weekend - and the added bonus being, it's like, 8 miles closer than Thai 2000 was!

Of course, we'll continue to support our local Thai restaurant (Thai House) ; I'm now on a first-name basis with the chef there, and when I call in my order I make sure she's the one making my Red Curry Beef. They hired an additional cook a while back, and whoever they are, they don't make it like Penny does. I declared myself the "Prime Minister of Thai Food" to James, as I was bloviating about the Red Curry Situation a few weeks ago, and kudos to the owners for listening to me when I brought it up. James pointed out that title IS self-appointed. However, I do think I've earned it.


posted by PlazaJen, 12:41 PM | link |

Friday, February 09, 2007

It's Not Even 9:30

But I just read an article on how A-B is redesigning all of the Michelob bottles to have a teardrop shape -- And I had an intense craving for a Mich Light. That was the beer we only could afford around payday back in college. The beer that used Phil Collins singing in the commercials, and the night belonged to Michelob. What a flashback.
(Ha! I just remember a note my dad left me on my apartment door my senior year, when he did a surprise visit & I wasn't home. "I was here. Love you, Dad. Michelob Light?" Because he could see the bottles in the kitchen through the apartment window. Heh. )

I want to watch Miami Vice and drink a six pack and then go to the gas station for a really cheap burrito and watch Friday Night Videos. God, how times have changed.

Staying classy in Kansas City. TGIF. Still coughing. Still not getting enough sleep. Did I mention I'm glad it's Friday?


posted by PlazaJen, 9:12 AM | link |

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Dammit, We Needed Jack Bauer!

Boy howdy was yesterday a big news day in KC. All we were missing were some shady characters and Kiefer Sutherland to turn the entire chemical plant explosion into a non-stop mini series where at least one person has, yet again, a very bad day.

The only thing that was funny came later last night, when the Wo called me from backgammon. His friend's brother had called in a panic that they were going to start evacuating Brookside because all the ash was going to settle there. Since Wo hadn't seen the news or been on the internet, he didn't know what was going on and wanted to make sure I was staying on top of things. So I called Kristin & Justin, who live just north of us, to see if they had heard about this evacuation. Nope. We did, however, establish a calling tree in the event the National Guard showed up at their house. I suggested we put our friend Beth at the top of the tree, since she was further to the north by another 20 blocks.

Turns out, there was no need to call in the National Guard, CTU, or Jack Bauer. The only evacuation was around the site of the explosion. The good news is, though, we now have an evacuation plan. (They say everyone should have one. Is it wrong that in between phone calls, the only place I could think of going that's south of me was Jess & Jim's Steakhouse? Mmmmm, twice-baked potatoes should be part of every good evacuation plan.) Our plan includes getting the dogs & the Wo's bipap machine, and heading to his mom's house. So you mother fucking terrorists take note: Blue Springs is off-limits.


posted by PlazaJen, 9:21 AM | link |

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Which Way Is This Spiral Going?

OK, I just returned from the ladies room, and I believe I went into the wrong facility. For whatever reason, despite the knitted scarf, earrings, long skirt and obvious bosoms, today, I look like a man in drag. I just applied some lipstick, which I'm sure is cementing the Drag Queen Within look for the rest of the afternoon. I need to go back to bed so I can wake up a woman, dammit!

Special Orders DO Upset Us.
I think my senior years are going to be spent as a shut-in. Mostly as a defense mechanism to avoid being thrown in JAIL. I went through the drive-thru at Sonic at lunch, and ordered a double burger. No fries, or tots, none of that stuff, I just wanted one big ol' hamburger for lunch. And I had a coupon. I might as well have garrotted myself with some piano wire and saved everyone the trouble. See, the coupon was for a FREE BURGER, because we drove in a few weeks ago and they were closed, and they handed out free burger coupons as a "woops! We sorry!" sort of gesture. And it clearly states that it's for one free single burger, anything else is extra. You'd think, what with this being a four-color process coupon and all, not someone's ghetto publishing extravaganza, that it'd be pretty easy to deduct the cost of a single burger. Here's some math to indicate how it was going:
That'll be eleven........ (my eyebrows are hitting my hairline, waiting for the other shoe to drop)
That'll be seven (something). I got a Sweetheart Shake, too. Which, by the way, is pretty darn tasty, and yet my life would be so much better if they came in a SMALL. I threw half of it away.
I told him about my coupon, and I could see the entire axis of the store's foundation start to spin. He tried to add another burger to my order. No. More silence. Finally, I drove up to the window. A manager got involved. I finally said, fine, just give me the regular burger. OK, $2.50. Manager reappears. He took my coupon and tore it up. (?) I just wanted to LEAVE and didn't enquire about his Sinead O'Connor act. Then he came back and said they'd make it work. $4.49. OK. Finally, the Burger of Discontent is done. Oh, it'll be a few minutes on that shake. It had been 10 minutes at this point, I didn't even ask what sort of paralysis I had caused, I just took my meal and left. And concluded that in the interest of gravitational rotation and staying out of the pokey, I should stop trying to do anything different from the Great Menu of Life. Yeah, right.

So, I am just hoping that this day picks up. Or that DAMN I start to feel like a woman..... ba ba da da daaadeeeyaaaaah
posted by PlazaJen, 1:30 PM | link |

Burly Ashtray

That was the subject line from some spam I got today; I thought it had a nice ring to it. Of course, I didn't open it, because we don't smoke & I haven't found much of a need for ashtrays, burly or otherwise.

Today's somewhat better on the health front, probably due largely to the nap I squeezed in yesterday. My coughing didn't stop last night, and this morning, it finally dawned on me why my back hurts: the coughing! My entire ribcage area feels like I've been treated to a visit from a loan shark or something. I'm hoping that a couple more days of the meds will start kicking this bug out of my system & life will get back to normal - a term that's always relative.

I'm blue (da bo dee da bo dah), because I had to sign the papers that say my dad's will & all that stuff is Final. Since he left nearly all of his estate to his wife, that also brings up some issues that I keep stuffing into a footlocker and piling books on. It reminds me of the bright hot Springtime afternoon that I had a blowout fight with him over his decision to leave everything to her, and how he finally got angry with me, and stopped trying to protect me and said, "Jennifer, I wake up in the morning and wonder if this is the day I'm going to die." He hid the severity of his illness from all of us, but I think in that moment, it helped set the stage for what would come later - which still came far too soon. I remember feeling panic and regret for a few days after that conversation, but I don't anymore. I'm glad we talked about it and scrappled through it like we did with anything else we didn't see eye-to-eye on. I wish things were different, so many things, and no amount of money or stuff will ever take from me the relationship he and I had. Sometimes with blended families, it's hard to dissect the semantics and definitions of words - both my dad & his wife viewed their partners' children as their children as well. Call me selfish - and I know my dad WAS a dad to her kids - but I was his kid for 31 years before he even knew them. And it sounds petty and yet, with everything I could get wrapped up in and off-track focusing on, that is the one thing that makes me feel a little better when my Panic Gnomes try to get me swirling over what's fair and 100 other things I can't control. The other part of my blue is that I'm going to have to go home & go through a whole bunch of stuff, things I'm dreading seeing and remembering and the tidal wave of emotions that will come with it. Part of it is my hatred of who I was when I was a teen, and all the reminders I'll have of my fractured, broken relationship with my mother. The regrets of knowing now what I didn't know then, and the mistakes I made. I prefer to live in a candy-colored bubble of avoidance.
It's so much nicer than a burly ashtray.
posted by PlazaJen, 11:00 AM | link |

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Sick Day

So, I've been fighting this sporadic, unpredictable cough now for about three weeks. I swear, it rattled the windows and floorboards & reminded me of my first apartment in Minneapolis, which was under one particular flight pattern that shook our building several times a week. The worst was how it woke me up in the middle of the night, and I'd bury my face in my pillow, coughing - but never getting anything OUT. It's been kind of a personal hell.

Last night was the straw that broke the camel's back. I hadn't been in bed half an hour when I woke myself up, coughing. Then, much later, I woke myself up again - sorry for the graphic nature here - with bile & acid in the back of my throat & in my mouth, gagging, coughing and like you right now, grimacing. So I finally realized that it was not going away, and I was tired, tired from not getting complete nights of sleep, tired from the coughing. Fortunately, my doctor's office usually can get you in pretty quickly, and I popped in mid-morning. I know before, I bitched about the customer service and whatnot, and even started thinking about switching, and I TAKE IT ALL BACK.

My main contact there is a physician's assistant; my primary care physician is this tiny short Vietnamese woman. The last time I was in, she and I had an animated discussion about Vietnamese food. Since the PA was out, I saw my doctor, and I was sitting there knitting on a pair of socks when she entered the room. It set the tone for the entire visit. She went crazy, because she'd just learned how to knit, and proceeded to tell me she'd had a disaster, dropping a stitch, and she panicked and ripped the whole thing out. I proceeded to show her how to fix a dropped stitch, dropping one of my sock stitches & then zipping it right back up. I went further & explained the difference between picking up a dropped purl vs. knit stitch. After about five minutes of good knit chat, she listened to my lungs, and said that I did have some stuff in them, but it wasn't bad yet, and good thing I didn't wait until it turned into bronchitis. She sent me off with a bag of samples, two antibiotics a day and two cough suppressants a day; those pills are the size of a Civic. I felt like maybe I should have gotten my copay back for the free knitting instruction, but I didn't push it. (After all, the samples saved me a trip to the drugstore.)

I came home and slept for a solid two hours, bookended by chipping ice on the driveway. It's an unseasonable 50+ degrees today & I had to take advantage of the melting temps to get some of that stuff up. I always think I'm going to get so much done if I'm home during the workweek, and it never works out that way. The sleep was a good thing, though. The sunlight poured in and I didn't even care that it was so bright, I just curled up like a dog in a patch of sunshine and slept - finally, without the interruption of coughing. And I'm going to be completely confused for the rest of the week as to what day it is!
posted by PlazaJen, 4:44 PM | link |

Friday, February 02, 2007


W:"So, it's Groundhog Day. The groundhog DIDN'T see his shadow."
J:"Woohoo! Spring's on the way! Good ol' Petawny Chuck."
W: (shakes head)
J: "What? What's his name."
W: "Punxsutawney PHIL. His name is PUNXSUTAWNEY PHIL."
J: "Oh. Yeah. Well, I was close."

posted by PlazaJen, 11:47 AM | link |

Thursday, February 01, 2007

For the Wo

Snapped today at McCoy's :


Indeed, some folk believe Cream of Mushroom Soup is actually SOUP.

Anyone north of I-80 knows it's merely an ingredient.
posted by PlazaJen, 4:36 PM | link |