Sunday, January 24, 2010


I'm experiencing a feeling that I haven't had in quite a while. A feeling of holding steady that oddly feels like progress. When the sky is black and the flying monkeys are out in full force my tendency is to just keep my head down and push through. Due to the mellowing influence of The Missus I even manage to keep the dramatic outbursts to a minimum. But it wears on a guy after a while.

Work is just insane. I couldn't possibly relate the insanity so it's not even worth trying except to say that if you ever are interested in loosing your mind go get hired as an electrician and then volunteer to be the guy who polices the efforts of 120 workmen to renovate a high rise while keeping the parts with patients Martha Stuart clean. Meh, enough of that, it's the weekend.

So I've already had a week this year when I put nearly a hundred hours on the clock. And had a stretch of three weeks without a break. And the whole rest of my family has been sick. And my truck got robbed. But then overnight something shifted...

I had a bar gig last night. The band wasn't terrible. Ran into half a dozen people I haven't seen in years. Found out I have a fan club. Ate free wings. Got paid. I hit the sack at 5 am and when The Missus woke me up to go to church everything just felt better somehow. I drank my coffee, I soaked up church. The kids are slightly less nutty, the baby is eating and sleeping normally again, and The Missus is back to dishing out snappy answers again.

I went from feeling like there was only so much more of this that I could endure to feeling like I could manage indefinitely if this feeling will just persist. Likely it has a lot to do with disconnecting from work in less time than it takes to punch the time clock. (Swwwwwwwipe! Ahhhhhhhh! Job? What job?)

So while I go about my business today, making ready for my daughter's seventh birthday, I plan on stopping frequently. I'm going to memorize this feeling. I'm filling a mental notebook with snapshots and scribbling furiously in the margins so I can pull it out on Wednesday morning. (Jokes about alcoholism are only good for about two days of "making it through".)

Right now, God is in His heaven, and the world turns a little more slowly here on Church Street for a change.


Saturday, January 23, 2010

On Laundry

This isn't a post about the drudgery of housework. This morning when I was folding a bit of washing I began to ponder the mathematical implications that the clothing of infants entails. While a grown person has perhaps twenty or twenty-five items in a load of wash, maybe a few more if there are a lot of socks and under-things in there, it doesn't take that long to fold a load. Five minutes and you've got a nice pile, ready to head for the bureau.

Babies on the other hand, being of much smaller stature, can go through several thousand items before the laundry basket is full. Out of a typical load of roughly a million items you can expect to find nearly five hundred thousand to be onsies, all inside out. The rest of the load is comprised mostly of various "cute" items that are also inside out but relatively easy to fold and classify into piles. These account for roughly another one hundred thousand items.

The balance of the load is roughly four hundred thousand socks, all somehow big enough to cover the foot and thigh of a chubby baby but not big enough to easily admit the thumb and forefinger of the adult trying to turn them right side out. And of course in a batch of four hundred thousand baby socks, there are two hundred thousand pairs... all different. (Makes me slightly ashamed of my own selection of just two kinds of Hanes.) One could write a doctoral thesis for a masters in statistics on the problems encountered in trying to pair up baby socks.

Anyway, not complaining, just marveling at the every day science of raising little ones.


Thursday, January 21, 2010

The Meh of Modern Life

So my truck got broken in to and a bunch of stuff that I use all the time got taken. And some really expensive stuff that belonged to other people. My fault, I left it unlocked. But the butterflies and the lump in the throat that develop after the anger subsides are nothing compared to the horror that is trying to get things back on track after something like this happens.

It took three hours to get my bank account back in order and I'm told that this is because they designed the new procedure to be more painless. Then there's the bumbling mumbling police officers, the constant trolling on Ebay and Craigslist for my stuff, and don't even get me started on the insurance companies. There's three involved and it looks like the best case scenario will involve me hocking some more equipment that I can't afford to loose to cover deductibles.

I didn't write this to be all woe-is-me. Whatever, God's bigger. I'm just sort of disgusted with humanity. In all honesty drugs are probably the reason that thugs were checking car doors in my neighborhood (my nice, quiet, rural neighborhood) and that just sucks. What a blight. And we throw money hand over fist at insurance companies, but when we actually need our coverage, because of all the fraud they sick the don't-pay-out-under-any-circumstances crew on you. Again, bleh.

Whatever, perspective... it could be way worse. In all likelihood people who are desperate enough to roam around stealing are also living under an extremely elevated risk of getting shot, or shanked, or any number of unpleasant things. And that's on top of the dreck that is the daily existence of a drug user. So I'm really not that mad at the perpetrators. They've been getting theirs for a long time already and will continue to get it every day of their miserable lives. As for myself, my truck is a little lighter tonight, but I've got a warm house full of golden children. I've got food to eat and water to drink (we can still afford it this month anyway), and all and all life is still pretty sweet.


Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Local Holiday Celebrateur Makes Good

I was paging through the People of Wal-Mart and about fifteen pages in came across a gentleman from my own home town. Here's the link. He generally has several thousand holiday items on top of his truck, a three foot tall piece of head wear with several hundred more items on it, and quite often dyes his beard to match the colors of the current holiday. At Christmastime he goes the extra mile and adds a trailer to the rig to get in all the extra accouterments.

I run into him at Wal-Mart (of course), the bank, the gas station, and even at the hospital where I work. Not sure if he's coming in for routine testing or just showing up to spread the holiday cheer. Always... this isn't just a Christmas thing. He's in full regalia the whole year round.

Not quite sure what I think about it, but I usually smile when I see him so I guess it's mission accomplished for The Holiday Guy.