Tag Archives: sense of humor

Through the Keyhole CW cue

“What do you see on the other side of the door when you look through a keyhole?
 a prompt for this week’s CW piece.
[Source: @DailyPrompt]

“What do you see?!”

“It’s dark, but it kinda looks like a library. There is some light in there though.”

“There has to be more to it than that!”

“Because…”

“Because they won’t unlock it. Let me look.”

“I’m going to look under the door.”

“Never seen a keyhole like this. It’s BIG!”

“Nothing but dust bunnies down here. Ya, it’s an old house. It’s like the old movies where they carry an enormous key ring.”

“Shhhh! I just heard something inside!”

“What? There are people in there?!”

“Shhh! They’re talking.”

“What are they saying?”

“There’s music coming from behind the wall. He’s knocking on the bookcases.”

“Do you hear any music? Can you See anything?”

“Nope…wait, the light is moving around.”

“Is it a flashlight then?”

“What was that? It sounded like furniture moving. They seem to be talking.”

“More than one person?”

“Yes, a man and a woman.”

“And…?”

“It makes no sense.  ‘Put the candle beck?’

https://dailyflabbergast.wordpress.com/2019/04/18/cw-its-not-what-you-think/#comment-10553

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Giving stuff up for Lent

This has been the most painful, the most difficult Lenten season I can remember.  You’re asking yourself, “Did you give up chocolate?  Pizza? Pop?”  It always seems to revolve around food, doesn’t it?  One year, I gave up speeding.  I had to make extensive use of my cruise control.  I changed my behavior and haven’t gotten a speeding ticket in years! After working in fast food for 5 years (boy did that seem like ages!), I gave up cursing for Lent.  I had called it Hardee-speak.  There were lots of blanks and long pauses in my speaking pattern from self-censoring.  I sounded like a cd with skips.  But as hard as both of those actions were at the time, they’re nothing compared to this year.

Got you curious now, huh!  I gave up…

ranting at people.  I can only rant at inanimate objects. My brain is fizzling out.  I had no idea what a rampant behavior this was in my character! I live in Lake Nebraska on a little island called Omaha. I can rant at the rain, the flood, the winds, and the blizzards. Plenty to rant at right? But I cannot rant at all the people that look at these pictures and have no other adjectives other than, “It’s so sad.” Get a freakin’ thesaurus. (Notice the self-censorship?  It’s getting harder!) “You cannot make light of these tragedies you cruel, insensitive jerk!” I say to myself. “People do not understand gallows humor,” I explain to myself. Should we all tear our clothes, put ashes on our heads, and wail for the next 2 years while they fix our infrastructure? In my humble (or not so humble) opinion, Heck No!  We’re Nebraskans.  We take this in stride. We knew the job was dangerous when we took it. I understand; some are still in shock. The whole country should be in shock. Heck! (self-censoring again) We should be getting aid from Africa, India, Japan, China, Europe, Malaysia, Kuwait, Middle East…all those disasters we went in to help clean up.

*Warning!  Gallows humor follows. Move to a safe part of your brain and suspend your disbelief at the incredibly inappropriate humor.*

We should expect Russia, who has such a vested interest in this country, to be at the front of the line when it comes to aid.  We’re not talking loans here, we’re talking

  • people with shovels,
  • volunteers with buckets and mops,
  • bridge building engineers and equipment,
  • road construction crews and materials

–real help.  Yeah, I thought so. Just going to get pity parties from the rest of the people outside the MidWest. (Yay South Dakota, Texas, Kansas!) We’ll get viral views of the floods and blizzards all over Facebook with 216,042 comments all saying, “How Sad.”

We got it. We’ll handle it without fanfare, without the national news.  We’re a fly-over state, and now a fly-over lake.

I cannot rant against idiot drivers, who honk at me when I’m avoiding a pothole that would swallow a bus. I cannot rant at people who park on both sides of the street so the snowplow cannot get to our road. I cannot rant at the guy who had to go out of his way to ding my car with his pick-up truck door and hit it so hard it dented and left lovely red and white paint on my navy colored Buick. I cannot rail at the people who see pictures of our president in jeans and a t-shirt and a MAGA cap rescuing cats from a flood and not wonder how he lost 30 pounds and 40 years, gained muscular forearms and was in Iowa during the 2008 flood. (Which would have been before the MAGA hat) Then they suggest that that picture is from the current flood and think this is a believable situation. Where are his Secret Service guards? The President as the office holder cannot spend time getting into the water with the victims.  That’s not his job.  The President as a person, Mr. Trump, may own a pair of jeans, but he wears a $1000 jacket and a shirt with cufflinks with them. He may feel for the victims, but though he might send someone to help rescue cats; he wouldn’t do it himself. That’s not in his character.

I cannot rant against the President, the Congress, or the local politicians.  I cannot rant against the referees and the umpires and the Little League parents.  I cannot rant against the unethical salespeople, the telemarketers, the frauds that take advantage of people in the midst of a natural disaster.  I cannot rant against the people that robbed the flooded houses instead of cleaning them up (though that’s a rare case in Nebraska.)

I can only rant at inanimate objects. I may not make it to Easter.

 

HOW DO YOU TURN IT OFF?!!!!

I am co-writing a book:  “Spotlight on the Art of Generating Energy.”  I am also editing said book which means I have to read all the contributions.  One of the chapters is about the interplay of all the energies–intellectual, creative, and emotional.  Fascinating theories!  If any one aspect of energy takes control to the exclusion of all others, your brain may be overwhelmed, your body might be compromised, or you could spiral emotionally (either up or down by the way!)

Unfortunately, I have experienced what happens when two of the energy sources conspire against me.  Yup…  In addition to editing this book, I am running for a district office within an organization to which I belong.  I am actively marketing my skills and my qualifications and vision for the organization so I am making use of both my intellectual and creative energy sources.  You may or may not have read my stuff in either this blog or my other one.  You know how creative and intellectual I can get.  Let me put it in perspective.

I had coffee with dinner, a couple of cups, about 8:00 last night.  Then I watched NCIS, 3 episodes in a row.  I was nodding off during the last one.  I thought, “I’ll just head upstairs and check the weather and go to bed.”  3 hours later…

Creative energy Creature: “Hey!  That’s a great idea for promotion!  Let’s go to all the contests and provide a one-sheet and meet the folks at the contest so they get to know you.”

Intellectual energy Imp:  “Ya!  Did you see your competition’s flyer?  She listed her grandkids by name as part of her qualifications for the position!”

CC: “How does that help?  She procreated kids that were also able to procreate and she remembers their names…so she doesn’t have memory problems?”

II: “Our stuff is better.”

CC: “We could add all the Girl Scout information…We could name all our students…we could perform the Bach Prelude that we learned at age 9 to prove our memory capacity!”

II: “We have plenty of good stuff in our flyer.  We’re good.”

Me:  “Ok, good.  We have that settled, let’s go to sleep.”

II: “Did you hear about the guy that felt so bad about the Girl Scouts standing out in the cold selling cookies at their booth that he bought them all? $500 worth!  Then he was arrested for drug trafficking!”

CC:  “Hahaha!  It makes perfect sense!  You KNOW how addictive those cookies can be!  He was shipping the cookies back to the Cartel!”

II:  “You mean…trading one addiction for another!  Oh wait!  Maybe the cookies were how he was getting drugs into the country!  He ships them down, they alter them and ship them back!  Hey Kid!  you want some peanut butter patties?”

CC:  “Well that would explain why you can’t have just one box of Thin Mints!”

II:  “I had two boxes of Thin Mints and I’m still 50 pounds overweight.  Is that false advertising?”

Physical Energy Phiend (Fiend see?): “Shut UP!  I’m tired!  I want to sleep!”

Emotional Energy Elf: “I don’t know how I feel about that: forcibly shutting down two other energy sources to serve your needs.”

PP: “Well if you want to get UP in the morning, we have to turn them off!”

EE: “I’m still not convinced.  Some of our best ideas happen when those two pull an all-nighter.”

PP: “Do we ever remember what they did overnight?”

II and CC:  “Hey!”

EE: “Ok, I see your point.  Could you two tone it down a bit?”

II: “I will if she will.”

CC: “I can be totally silent.  How well do you sign?”

PP: “Her eyes are closed, idiot.  II can’t see a thing if her eyes are closed.”

EE: “Please try to be civil.”

PP: “I’M TIRED!  I’M TRYING TO SLEEP!”

II: whispers “Remember to get the flyers from the printer and stop by the college to get the Speaker’s and the Conference ads for tonight.”

CC: whispers “I really don’t think the Conference advert is very good–too busy and too much information.”

II: low voice “And the wrong information…it doesn’t have start times.  We could redesign it…”

EE: low voice “But how would Colleen feel about our stepping in and fixing it?”

PP: low voice “So tomorrow, breakfast, Bible study, pick up flyers from college, go to printers and pick up personal flyers, deliver print instructions for conference flyers…100 enough?”

II: normal voice “to start with I think.  It will cost more due to having to print both sides.  And don’t forget we need to stop at Wally World to get frames.”

PP:  “Yup.  Then drive to contest…Says it’s a little over an hour’s drive, but with traffic, could be longer than that.”

II: “Take the Prairie View Road instead of the interstate, less traffic that way, and it’s prettier country.”

PP: “Contest starts at 5:30, and since it’s Area level, only 4-6 contestants in either contest.  Figure we’ll be done by 8:30 by the time we get our glad-handing and clean-up done, then an hour home.  Figure 314 Joules.”

II: “That would convert to 75 calories.”

PP: “So the minimum amount of sleep would be…”

II: “Figure about 6-7 hours.”

Me, still awake, and I check the clock.  “Guys, it’s 1:30 AM.  We get up in 5 hours.”

PP and II stare at each other.  CC jumps in to the rescue.

CC: “We can take a nap after we get home!”

EE: “Um wha?  Did somebody say something?  Weren’t you complaining about all the noise, PP?”

PP blushes.

Momentary silence.  I drift off to sleep…

II: “Did you see that snow forecast?  It just went around our city!”

CC:  “Gandalf was standing on the interstate saying, ‘You SHALL NOT PASS!'”

II: giggles “Maybe one of the wind turbines got turned on and blew it away!”

CC:  “I wonder if they’re maneuverable remotely.  Hey!  It’s Hot over there!  Aim them that way!”

II: “I heard that they tell the wind farm tourists in Texas precisely that!  *with a Texas drawl* ‘Yep, gets up to 110 we turn them puppies on and they’ll pretty much cool Austin and Fort Worth.  Dallas is a whole nuther story though.'”

PP: “HEY!!!”

EE: “What?  What’s going on?  Why is PP yelling?”

Me:  It’s 3 AM!  Go to sleep!

CC, II, PP, and EE, ashamed, do not answer.

II:  whispers, “Did you know her husband snores?”

CC, PP, EE and I shout: SHUT UP!

Husband wakes and turns on the reading lamp just as the alarm goes off.  It’s going to be a long day.

 

Unintended Consequences–Thanos snapped

So if you don’t know, Thanos, the big bad scary planet eater (Talk about KETO diet!!!) has acquired all 6 of the infinity stones.  He has a gauntlet that holds them and the result is that when he snaps his fingers, 1/2 of all the living creatures in the universe just disappear into dust.  This includes SHIELD, and the Avengers, and normal people, and all the weird aliens in Guardians of the Galaxy movies, and Aasgard…  Now they’ve reduced all our favorite heroes to a manageable number, and all our favorite villains as well.  But…there are always unforeseen consequences.

Picture a middle school.  Mrs. Hightower has just announced a grammar quiz.  She disappears into dust.

Picture a guy in a race car sitting with his window down, about to get a massive ticket.  Policeman disappears.

The bottom layer of the pyramid of cheerleaders disappears.

The pitcher is throwing a shut out and the batter disappears.

The robbers of the bank are disappointed when the bank manager with the safe combination disappears.

Housewife is vacuuming floor and husband gets sucked in.

“Do you take this woman to be your lawfully wedded…dust pile?”

“If you don’t have that report on my desk in 5 min, you’re fi….”  poof!

Donald is starting to sign the wall bill into law and disappears.

Russia’s FSB disappears and now there are several US government positions that need to be filled.

The cop is cornered in the alley and the drug dealers disappear.

Joel is talking about the rapture and 1/2 of his congregation disappears, and he doesn’t.

Call center for Missing Persons is suddenly understaffed and all the lines are lighting up.

You’re on a crowded plane and the big sweaty guy in the middle seat disappears.

You look out the window on your plane and discover that all the luggage is falling onto the tarmac.

Your stewardess comes over the intercom and says that for some reason, the pilot, copilot and navigator are missing.  It could be a rough landing.

The runner in 3rd place discovers the 1st 2 have disappeared.

“I can’t believe it!  I’ve just cured cancer!  I need to write this down…”  poof!

The nuclear launch codes have been issued, and one of the key operators disappears (with his key.)

Westborough Baptist protesters are surprised to find the funeral attendees have disappeared.

Zombies are disappointed.

Tom Cruise and Simon Peg’s scene in Mission Impossible 12 gets cut short.  No cameramen or stunt doubles.

Ohio State Marching Band doesn’t have a dot for its I.

Now, “You and what army?” takes on an ominous meaning.

All the mimes disappear.  Nobody notices.

All the Macy’s day Balloons are now untethered.

The Metropolitan production of Aida is cancelled.

All Universal Life Insurance salesmen disappear.

All the 2nd violinists in the Chicago Symphony disappear.  Like the mimes, they’re not missed.

Half the Chiefs disappear during half-time of the championship game.  Their performance doesn’t change.

Strange blogger is noting unusual consequences of Thano’s finger snap and doesn’t finish her

 

 

 

 

 

Friction Fiction

How many times have you depended on Friction and it failed you?  How many times have you been frustrated by Friction?  I submit there ARE NO LAWS of Friction!  It is capricious and mean and actually has evil designs on humanity!

You know what they call fingerprints?  Friction ridges!  Yup.  Humans and in fact all primates have fingerprints.  Why?  So they don’t slide off of tree branches and rocks and ledges and tall buildings.  Do they work?  NO!  If you’re trying to pick up the spoon you just dropped, you will drop it 3 or 4 more times before you have a tough enough grip to get it to the sink.  If you are dangling from a building and the only thing keeping you from falling is some superhero’s grip on your hand, YOU WILL FALL!  They’re superheroes for pity’s sake!  They are certainly strong enough to crush your hand and lift you up and toss you about.  But there you are and they have a moment of regret that the tossing has caused irreparable harm to their image as do-gooders and they try to save you as you go off the building.  Suddenly, they cannot lift you with one arm, and the massive strength in their hands is reduced to butter.  Just once I’d like the villain/victim to yell on the way down, “YOU Sonofabitch!” Splat.

Do you know why there’s tread on tires?  Friction.  Have you ever hydroplaned?  Friction failed.  Traveling home in a rainstorm, only being able to tell where the road is by following the tail lights on the truck ahead of me, and going really slowly, I hydroplaned at least 4 times.  I caught some road just before I slid off and maneuvered back and not five minutes later had to do that again.

Have you ever driven a road you’ve traveled 1000 times and wondered why your car is going sideways?  I remember driving about 15 mph on a highway covered in ice.  It was a flat road (Nebraska!) with no turns, no hills.  Front wheel drive, no wind, and suddenly I’m doing 360’s.  You know that roads are higher in the middle than at the edges?  I started sliding off the side and corrected.  The car continued to go toward the ditch, regardless of the way the wheels were turned.  The brakes stopped the wheels from turning but didn’t stop the car.  The back end of the car came around and I turned into the skid like I learned in driver’s ed.  No effect.  Now, I’m going backwards down the highway at 15 mph.  Now sideways, now forward.  Whew.  Ooops!  Now sideways and backwards and sideways again, but crossing the center line.  Traction!  whoohooo!  Doesn’t matter.  I’m now in a ditch.  Here comes a pickup truck!  He slows down and stops. (Show off!)  He attaches a chain to my car and pulls me out. I continue on the road and finally get to my destination, about 3 hours later than I had planned.  Why was I spinning around and he wasn’t?  Because Friction Doesn’t Like Me!

Getting into my stupid car shouldn’t be an opportunity for friction to get the best of me, but it IS.  I have a long coat.  When I walk or sit, it’s constantly tangling up my feet.  I expect it.  When I get into the car, it DOESN’T stick to my pants like it does every other time I wear it.  NOOOOO.  It falls off my leg and gets caught in the door when it closes.  So I open the door and pull my coat up to catch on my knee and close the door.  Between the time I set my coat and grab the door, it falls back in between the seat and the door AGAIN!

Getting my phone out of my purse should not be an exercise in futility.  BUT IT IS!  I reach in to get my phone and cannot grip it.  My friction ridges are providing no friction.  When I do get my phone out, I have pressed every application I have.  Yes, the phone was locked when I put it into my purse, so in grabbing it, I somehow managed hit the home page, bypass the password, turn on my flashlight (which I find difficult enough to do on purpose) hit youtube.com video that plays a song I’ve never heard of before at an embarrassingly loud volume, startles me, and I drop it back into my purse.  I try in vain to pull my phone out to shut the danged noise off, but once again my friction ridges are providing no friction.  Now that the members of the church are staring at me with consternation, (Oh NOW I recognize it.  “Thong thong thong thong thong…”)  I can finally turn the dam thing off, and I don’t remember why I was getting it out of my purse in the first place.  Phone is off.  Put phone in outer pocket.  It WILL NOT GO IN!  The lack of Friction I experienced in trying to remove it from my purse is now obstinately in place again.  This pocket in my purse is full sized.  There are pens and a bulletin and a name tag in the pocket, yet my phone will not go in all the way.  In fact it only goes in 1/4 of the way and threatens to fall onto the floor.  I curse under my breath.  Oops, I’m in church.  The little boy ahead of me smirks.  My phone catches on something and will not budge.  THERE IS NOTHING FOR IT TO CATCH ON!  Nevertheless, it’s catching on something.  It might be something in an adjacent pocket, so I slide my hand into the pocket to find the obstruction.  There isn’t one, so I try to force the phone into the pocket.  It finally concedes and goes in.  The preacher booms from the pulpit, “Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord Thy God in vain.”  Oops.

Over and over and over again, we trust friction to keep glasses from sliding off the table.  They slide anyway.  We depend on friction to keep us standing when we open or close doors.  We fall anyway.  We depend on the apparent lack of friction to throw something into the trash. It comes up messily short anyway.  We depend on the low amount of friction when brushing our hair.  It tangles and eats our brushes, combs and barrettes anyway.  We expect the friction to keep our hair in place.  It comes out of our elaborate hairstyles anyway.

There is the Men’s guide for friction…

This won't turn out well. - Imgflip

The Women’s corollary:

If it shouldn’t move, even though it’s duct taped, IT WILL MOVE.

If it should move, even though he’s WD-40’d it, IT WON’T.

In other words, if you depend on Friction to act a certain way, and it is to your advantage for it to work that way, Friction will do exactly the opposite. Fickle Friction!  It is Flighty and Fractious–a Fiendish Fraud–a Foul Effluvia–a Freudian Froth of Fervent and Feverish Foolishness.  Pha I say!  Friction is Fiction played upon us by an evil Fairy bent on our destruction!

When people drive me crazy

I had a busy day yesterday.  It’s my day off.  Do you see a disconnect here?  I purposely do not schedule any recurring activities on Tuesdays.  It allows me clean my house, decompress, bake, do fun things.  If however, I have some business to do or make-up lessons to schedule, they go on Tuesdays.

This was my schedule for Tuesday:  5:00 lesson

This was what actually happened.

  • 8:00 Write an article for the news letter
  • 10:15  Study group for Bible Study
  • 12:00  Gym (for a whole 15 minutes instead of my regular hour)
  • 1:00  Mentoring session
  • 3:00  Follow up with client
  • 4:30-9:30 Toastmasters training session

I had to cancel the 5:00 lesson.  During the training session, I led a discussion among the treasurers and secretaries.  I presented some training to the group of about 48, and they had no PA system.  They also had no sound for the video clips so that totally messed up the session on judging by the poor guy at the end of the program.  He was supposed to have some recordings of some award winning speeches and we were to practice judging using the methods and the sensibilities gleaned from his presentation.  After that, since hubby and I took separate cars, we were to just head home, but no.  Our logistics manager is in the postal service and they run him ragged this time of year.  The next event is Saturday a distance away and we volunteered to transport all the necessary equipment for him.  We had to load up the car with coolers and containers and banners and easels, and then we also had the leftover sandwiches from the night’s training.

I am a “T” personality, or “Green” or whatever Meyers-Briggs classifies me.  That means I’m most comfortable one on one, but even more comfortable squirreled away in my little office behind mounds of junk just working on my computer or reading.  Big crowds and lots of personal contacts make me anxious (?) so I have to decompress for a while.  It tires me out!

I enjoyed the study session, no one says much, and we just study and fill out the questions.  I don’t interact with anyone at the gym.  When I mentor, that takes some concentration.  I have to ask questions that bring my mentee to greater awareness.  Sometimes I fall back into teacher mode instead of asking questions so he thinks for himself.  When I do that, I see his eyes start to glaze over, and have to work on bringing him back to himself with some questions.  It mentally exhausts me.  Then I went to follow up on a client, and I love this woman to death.  She’s fun and lively and unstoppable.  But she’s a client so I need to make sure she’s on the right track.  I have to ask the questions and get the answers from her so I know what things I need to do to make sure she stays on the right track.

I headed out too late and got to the training session 15 minutes later than I intended.  I facilitated the small group of Treasurers and Secretaries, and to tell you the truth, they didn’t have much to offer.  They were forced into the office because someone had to do it and they were “voluntold.”  This office is an “easy” office, not much for you to do.  Liars.  So we discussed the ways that we contribute to the club that no one in any other position can.  Morale went up, and we weren’t lowly Treasurers/Secretaries.  No, we were the power behind the throne!  (Insert evil laugh here.)

 

Getting them to contribute was like pulling teeth.  Then they asked me to speak for the group since I was the only one taking notes.  Did you get that?  3 Secretaries there and I was the only one taking notes.  I had some rudimentary ideas that we’d discussed, but I’ve been doing these training sessions since I joined TM in 2008.  I expanded on the stuff I had written down so we sounded amazing.

Then my part of the presentation came up and I was helping people get started on a new educational program.  The only thing they remembered about my presentation was the word, “SAVE.”  In truth, the presentation I gave was written by someone else.  They wanted consistency through out the training sessions: 2 here, 2 there, and 1 way the heck out there.  Then we had an interactive session, and one of the activities didn’t go through.  We had to tap dance waiting for it to show up, and it never did.  We would have answered questions, but there were only a couple.  They didn’t know what they didn’t know.

By the end of the night, I’m REALLY short tempered and anxious to go home.  I still have to be nice and smile and laugh.  I helped my hubby get stuff out to the car.  He had the sandwiches on top of the cooler and the storage bin.  I figured to put the sandwiches in my car so I could get them into the house.  I opened my door (which was not locked) and asked for the sandwiches.  At this time I discovered that my hubby was also anxious and short tempered.  “Close that door and open my car door!”  So I did.  Then I grabbed the sandwich plate and squirreled it into my car and took off.  The cooler and the big storage unit, his briefcase, the banner, the easel and the paper went into his car.

When I get home, I jump out of my car.  (OK that’s funny because you’ve never seen me jump out of any car!)  This is how it actually goes:  open car door, stick foot out, watch as car door closes and try to catch it before it cuts my foot off at the calf.  Re-open the door, and get second foot out, and again catch the door as it’s about to hit me in the head as I lean out. Watch the colorful blue smoke and sparks emanate from the driver’s side, the paint peels and the window cracks from the vehemence of my cursing.  I finally get out of the car, hobble over to the passenger’s side, carefully open the door and grab the sandwiches.  Close the door and it catches my coat.  My hands are full of purse, notebook and a big tray of sandwiches.  More colorful adjectives and vindictive curses escape my lips.  More melted paint.  I get the door unlatched, and it immediately closes on my coat again. The temptation to throw the bag, the sandwiches and the notebook rises, but gets subordinated by a new stream of invective. Re-open the car door, pull coat out, move away from door and close it with foot.  March into house.  Deposit purse and notebook, carry sandwiches to kitchen, return to entryway and remove coat, take phone from purse. Stomp into living room and look for murder and mayhem on Netflix.  Watch 2 episodes of Glee.  Yes.  I was looking for Frontier, but I’d seen all of those, and all the Criminal Minds, and all the CSI and the Vikings, and and and…Glee was the only thing left.  There was not nearly enough blood.  I went to bed slightly unsatisfied.

Um huh?

So we were having a meeting at a grocery store…yes they have meetings there.  They have to train people remember!  And of course there’s a potty break.  1 bathroom for 15-20 women…

Never mind the logistics, this was what was weird:  There was a poster inside the door that said, “Look before you flush.”  Well that was intriguing.  Aren’t we supposed to look before we sit?  That would make more sense.  Some kid might have thrown a matchbox car in there.  But no, food store restroom…so not likely.  I read the poster.  It described poo.  Yup.  Consistency, shape, and illustrations.  (Really?!!!)  And then it compared the picture to items of food!  Jelly beans, sausage, hot dogs, soup.  ACK!  I guess that’s appropriate if you’re working with food.  Makes you look at carrots differently the rest of the day though.  The poster then grouped them and suggested remedies…drink more water, check for fever, etc.

Very educational poster, but not sure why it’s in a food store bathroom.  Now here’s the thing:  the toilet had an automatic flush.  How do you look when the “product” is already down the hole before you turn around?

Imagine walking by the bathroom and hearing, “Wait!  WAIT!!!  Dammit!  OK then, I’ll be back after lunch!  Stupid toilet!”

Ren Faire!

Ren Fairs are interesting…

It’s where people may or may not dress up as they think people would have dressed up in the 1200-1700’s.  500 years of fashion stuffed unceremoniously into a market.  Oh and it may be Renaissance or Fantasy.  You’ll see people with horns and wings and feathers.  They’ll wear midriff baring outfits and nun’s robes.  They’ll wear faux pirate gear and costumes that include armor from 4 different countries and 3 different centuries of manufacture.  They’ll wear $400 boots with a “I made this myself” fairy costume.  They’re selling wooden swords, beer steins, and games.  You want a weapon?  There are plastic and aluminum copies of authentic arms, and light sabers.  Tacky jewelry to works of art can be 2 tents from each other.

Turkey legs–smoked and served in aluminum foil and a paper basket or fish ‘n’ chips seem to be the popular food.  Why is this funny?  No turkeys in Europe until 1550’s and then not to common people.

But…I love Ren Fairs!!!  The choreographed fights, the belly dancing, the fake English Accents (because all Renaissance fairs are English) the trolls and creatures and costumes, and those dam turkey legs.

I got to thinking.  Did the people in the Renaissance have 1C Fairs?  Did people dress up in Roman and Greek outfits?  Would the tourists dress up in their favorite apostle garb?  Everyone would have had to speak in a very bad Greek or Latin accent.  They’d have to lose the colorful outfits they wore and choose plain peasant robes.florence-celebrations

(Yes, those are authentic outfits from the Renaissance.  These below were designed by Michelangelo…not the turtle, the guy that did David…)

Ren outfits

Go to the 1C fair!  Wear a sheet!  Might have different pagan gods, fair folk, leprechauns, and other mythical creatures on display and wandering on the midway, and those that still worship those gods waiting for the lightning to strike.  Instead of jousts and such, they could feed the Christians to the Lions at 1:00 3:00 and 5:30 shows.  (No not REAL lions!  They wouldn’t get volunteers that way!)  They could serve Roman Pork and wine and some beer from Goth.  The Goths would wander around the fair and threaten the civilized people dressed as Romans.  It could be fun.

Or you could go REALLY far back and have Ark-Fest!  They could have a large boat on display with all sorts of zoological exhibits.  They could have a rain dance!  They could throw fake rocks at each other!  They could close the Festival every night by having 1 guy at the top of the tower yelling through a megaphone, “Was that Thunder I heard?”

Movie Bistro Madness

Come!  Enjoy your movie in the luxury of a recliner!  No sticky floors!  $7 for a ticket!  Unless you order it online to make sure you HAVE a seat when you get there, then it’s $13.  Unless you have our rewards card so you can order on line and get it for $7.  And that’s not all!  In every theater before the previews start, you get an advertisement for the Bistro Theater…4 theaters in the complex where they bring the food TO you!  You want to see an early movie, but you hesitate because you either have to have dinner at 4:00, buy dinner on the way in at 5:00 and hope they’re not so busy that you’re late and cannot get a ticket (unless, of course you already have your ticket…see above) or you wait until 10:00 when the movie gets out and have Taco Bell right before you go to bed.  Taco Bell at 10 pm can have unfortunate consequences.  The Bistro solves all those problems!  TaDAAAA!

“Be sure to get here and order from our chef-inspired menu and have the wait staff bring the food to you in the theater!  You want more to drink or another dessert?  Push the call button and have your payment ready.”  The food on the screen looks like something out of the gourmet chef shows on the food network.  It’s beautifully plated on square plates and artfully drizzled with just the right amount of sauce.  That’s a lot of effort for a chicken sandwich.

When you go to the ticket counter and pick out your seat, the cashier says, “Hey! and you’re in the Bistro so you can skip the concession lines and just order from your seat!  Enjoy your movie!”  Woohoo!  So you go to the theater, find your seat, get comfy and wait for the server to get to you.  Theater is nearly empty because you did arrive 30 min before the show as they suggest when going to a bistro movie.

Dum de dum de dum…no wait staff IN the theater.  7 guys and 2 old ladies are sitting there playing the screen games and they already have their food.  Silly people.  They do not have chef-inspired cuisine to munch on before the movies starts.  Still no wait staff.  Hmmm.  Press the call button.  The theater darkens.  The two actions are not related, but seem ominous.  The server sure enough comes to your chair and pushes your call button so it goes off and asks for your order.  By this time, you’ve forgotten what you wanted to eat and it’s too dark to read the menu.  “I’ll have chef-inspired popcorn with buttery topping please…small, and a bottle of your Blue Mountain Dew.”  “What flavor is the blue mountain dew?”  “I don’t know, it’s blue.  I don’t buy it for the name.  Find the Mountain Dew in your cooler and if it’s blue, that’s it.”  “Do you have your rewards card?” “Yup and here’s my payment,” and I hand him my debit card.  Why debit card?  Because remember it’s dark and I cannot now see my money.  He processes my card, prints out the receipt for me to sign, hands me his pen and runs off, leaving me with the receipt and the pen.

He doesn’t come back.  “Yoo Hoo?”  I must be in an action/adventure movie because all the previews are super heroes and dystopian futures and incredible rescues from disasters.  Dum de dum de dum.  10 min into previews.  Still hasn’t picked up the receipt or his pen.  I hit the call button again.  2 servers walk by me and ignore me with food for other people.  Remember those 7 guys and the 2 little old ladies?  They are looking at me with pity and those eyes that say, “Silly person!  You could have had your chef-inspired popcorn and your drink when you came in and would have consumed most of the popcorn by now…and it would have been HOT popcorn…”  I’m so foolish.  I press the call button again.  He shows up and wants to know if I want to add to my order.  I say no but here’s your pen and the receipt…thought you might need it.

It occurs to me that maybe the servers are on some sort of reality show.  They have to get the orders from the patrons, go to the kitchen, prepare the chef-inspired delicious hamburgers, nachos, and fries to order (there are no substitutions) and get them out to the patrons Gordon Ramsey style.  “You ^(*&%*&( idiot!  You can’t plate that hamburger like that!  Redo that!” and then throws the food on the floor.  “But Gordon!  It’s dark!  They don’t even know if I got their orders right!”  “Oh right then.  Put the sloppy mess back on the plate and get it out of here…scrape off the dirt and such.”  Meanwhile, the previews are over, and it’s last call for orders.  One server in the whole theater, and call buttons lit up all over.  It gives an eerie blue glow about the room.  I have now been in the theater for 40 min.

Once again the screen lights up to tell us that next time we should arrive 30 min before the show so we can have our chef-inspired pizza and beer brought to us and I think, “It really doesn’t take that long to put popcorn in a bag and grab a bottle does it?”  The movie starts.  The ship is blown to smithereens, the bad guys are throwing debris about with a wave of their hands and monstrous mountains with vaguely human features are wielding building-sized weapons to threaten our heroes.  At least I think so.  In the first 15 min of the movie, there have been 8 servers walking between me and the screen delivering food to OTHER customers in the dark.  How can they see the seat numbers?  AHHHH!  Finally!  Here’s my chef-inspired popcorn and dew.  It’s the latest in movie cuisine–like iced coffee and cold soup (Vichyssoise).  Room temperature popcorn.

In a restaurant, 1 server can work with 12-16 customers.  Ideally then, this bistro should have about 5-7 servers.  They should stand near their sections and greet you when you find your seat.  All the orders should be taken while the lights are still on.  If you have a party of 4 with dinner-type orders and a person by himself with a small snack order, you put in the order to the kitchen for the dinners, and grab the snack and the drink on your way back to the theater and serve the single.  As your section fills up, you take orders from the newcomers.  Put in the dinner orders, check on previous orders and pick up the drinks and deliver those to the people who have ordered.  Return to kitchen and pick up any dinner orders that have been completed.  Take orders from recently seated people.  Put in new orders at kitchen, check to see if any orders are filled and ready to deliver.  If not, get the drinks out.  Go back to kitchen grab filled orders and deliver, repeat. And as always, if you have a drink/snack order, get it out immediately.  The only people you should be taking orders from after the lights go out are the latecomers.

If you are going to run 4 bistros in a theater, you’d DAM well better have a big kitchen and plenty of cooks.  You have to serve 240 customers in 30 min or less.

I’m going to order my chef-inspired popcorn and Blue Dew at the counter from now on.