my life in the drive thru

Due to the inordinate amount of time I spend in drive thru lines for such Life Sustaining Necessities as … oooh say … coffee … I should really expect, and generally tolerate, the fact that there are bound to be a reasonable amount of hiccups in the process.

So.

All that Pretend Nice Stuff being said, I would like to officially go on record as being semi-perturbed and a freckle-past-a-bit annoyed.  As my Congressman has asked that I cease and desist with the so-called frivolous correspondence he has received from me on the whole Drive Thru Debacle, I’ve got no where else to go.

Wow.  Shades of Richard Gere in ‘An Officer and a Gentlemen’. 

Did y’all catch that?

‘Sir, I’ve got no where else to go!’

And. 

Y’all know I’m kidding on the ‘cease and desist’ thing, right?

Just checking.

GETONWITHITLISA.

So.  Every morning I take a buzz through the Tim Horton’s drive thru and order the exact same cup of java as every other day.  And every day I get a rundown of the entire right-hand side of the menu.

‘Would you like a Western Breakfast Omelet today?’

No thanks.

‘Would you like to try our new blueberry-glazed wad of
purple sugar we have dubbed a donut?’

Umm.  No thanks.

‘Would you …’

LISTEN CASHIER CLOWN.  I SAY THIS IN THE MOST KIND WAY,
BUT DADGUM WILL YOU PUHLLEEASE JUST SHUT UP?!

Okay.  Y’all know I’m actually only thinking all this because I’m afraid if I say something all mean and nasty-like I’ll get some Really Bad Coffee.

If y’all know what I mean. 

It behooves me to let them ramble while I silently seethe and ponder all the ways in which my caffeine addiction robs me of any semblance of a normal life.

Today, in lieu of having forethought to pack a lunch, I also ventured out to Arby’s. 
I call it The Day of Living Dangerously.

I pull into the drive thru and off to my left, spiked into the ground next to the menu is a little sign:

ARBY’S
BAG OF ICE
$1.00

I am so not kidding.

I thought a long time about it.  Because, well folks, I have a tendency to ruminate on the dumbest things.  But.  Honestly?  I couldn’t bring up the name of a single person I know who would connect the dots that they would 1) need a bag of ice and 2) decide Arby’s is Thee Place to go for it.

Even more puzzling.  I wondered who came up with that whole
Ball of Stupid in the first place.

I was thisclose to asking if the Bag of Ice came in a combo meal with vodka and aspirin.  But I didn’t.  Because I’ve heard THE STORIES about what happens to the food of Smart Alecs in the Drive Thru.

So I order my sandwich and pull up to the window like the Good Compliant Consumer that I am.  As the Arby’s employee leans out the window to hand me the bag, I inquire as to whether there’s sauce in the bag.

I mean, really.  In the big scheme of things, I don’t ask for awfully much.  Just a little quiet time and a packet o’barbeque sauce.

She says ‘No’. 

And stands there clutching my bag.

Pause.  More standing.  

Yes.  I have just entered into a game of Drive Thru Window Chicken.  The first person that blinks, loses.  Okay.  So she’s told me ‘no sauce in the bag’.  And she’s not making any moves like she’s going to put any there anytime in the near future.

Hmmm.

Must be my move.  Eventually.  I blink.

‘Can I please have some sauce?’

As I’m driving back to the office, it hits me.  I have just met the employee who dreamed up the Arby’s Bag of Ice for $1.00 Campaign.

She had to be.  It would scare me to think that could be two such silly people working in one place.

you have reached your destination

Woe be to those who have denied themselves the insanely ridiculous luxury of Tom Tom ownership.  Not to be confused with Tim Tim, My Coffee Man, Horton. 

Tim, Tom … so many men, so little time. 

Oh.  And then there’s MacD, my french fry source who I haven’t been ’round to see lately.  Honest.  Cross my cholesterol-aching heart.  Long story.  Suffice to say he’s done me way wrong. 

Anyhoo.

Took a short trip this weekend.  I’m sorry, the lady in the third row just asked ‘How short?’.  Ma’am, it was 53 miles one way, 106 miles round trip.  Yes, uh huh.  Thank you for your question.   Punch and cookies will be served in the back of the auditorium directly after my blog.

Sit down.

I said ‘directly after my blog’. 

So.

We have two GPS devices in our household and folks, I’ll be the first to tell you they are slammin’.  Simply slammin’.  I won’t get into the technical details of how they work.  Well. Because that’s not in my area of expertise.  But.  Anytime I can plug in a simple address and a device is gonna get me there in one piece? 

Sold. 

However.

Y’all knew that was coming, didn’t you?  I do have a few, shall we say, ‘issues’ with Ye Olde Electronic Map.

Yesterday we decided to change the voice preference for the Tom Tom.  We’ve been listening to ‘Lori’ now for, oh say, 2,400 miles on our Disney-at-Christmas trip to Florida, so youngest son and I decided to shake things up a little. 

Oh yes.  Sometimes we are quite rebellious.

Touched the Tom Tom screen and five-or-ten-or-fifteen minutes later, I figured out how to change the voice.  And y’all know what?  It’s a crime how the manufacturer hides it under the Big-Red-Talking-Lips icon marked ‘Voice Preferences’. 

Someone’s on their game.  Oh yessire.  I only snuck past it twenty or so times before I said, ‘Ah ha!’

You can dress Lisa up, but y’all know you can’t take her out.

So.

Just for grins we decided we’d let ‘Richard’ guide us on our journey. 

Okay.  For real?  We so wanted to have Sean The Irish Guy Who Spaketh Directions With A Charming Limerick Lilt to help us out.  Then the wee lad and I, why we could pretend we were traipsing through the lush Irish countryside instead of the pot-hole-filled back roads of Michigan. 

We imagined Happy GPS Sean would say things like …

Téigh go díreach! Ansin cas ar chlé / dheis!
(go straight then turn left / right) 

Well.  That would be rather confusing, doncha think?  Really, Sean, which is it. 
LEFT OR RIGHT?!  Because it’s kinda important here.

Oh.  Gosh.  My personal favorite …

Cá bhfuil an (leithreas / chógaslann)?
(where is the bathroom / pharmacy?)

Because it would be just like me to leave home without some sort of prescription drug cocktail and on top of that, have to visit the bathroom in the Rite Aid.

Sadly.  We needed a CD and a computer to download Sean.  We happened to be lacking both on this particular trip.

Doesn’t anyone tell us these things before we leave home?

Quite frankly, I don’t remember ever seeing any CD in the GPS box. Nor instructions for that matter.  But since I’m notorious far and wide for throwing away everything for the sake of being Eternally Neat and Tidy, I’m not going to swear on that.

Alright. 

In lieu of Sean, we have Richard.

As tired as we were of hearing Lori, I gotta tell y’all Richard was a rather frightening change of pace. 

SCARY.

I am now a firm believer that there’s just something to be said for the soothing, melodic voice of an electronic woman.  Because I’ll be dipped if everytime Richard spoke, youngest son and I both jumped.

I am so not kidding y’all.

Youngest son and I started to look at each other and giggle nervously. 

‘He’s creepy, isn’t he?’ 

Big eyes.  Head nod. ‘ Oh yeah.’

On cue with the map, Richard would say something like, ‘In 500 meters, turn right’.

However.

I kept waiting for the other shoe to fall.

‘In 500 meters turn right.’

OR I’LL CUT YOUR HEART OUT WITH THE PLASTIC POTATO SALAD SPOON
YOU HAVE IN YOUR COOLER AND NO ONE WILL EVER FIND YOUR BODIES.’

We were even fearful to turn off Richard.  After all, he’s GPS.

He knows where we are.

Sixty-seven minutes later, we arrive at Lake Somerset.  Remarkably, both of us in one piece.  Or would that be two pieces since there were two of us? Something to ponder as you’re dozing off to sleep tonight.

And.  Well. We did toss out the plastic potato salad spoon weapon somewhere along mile marker 52. 

Just to be safe.

So.

As we’re pulling into the beach area … thanks to the assistance of our Resident Serial Killer Richard … youngest son says, ‘Where is the picnic shelter?  How far is it from where we have to park?’  I said, ‘Gee son, we’ll have to see when we get there.  IN SIXTY SECONDS, GIVE OR TAKE FIFTEEN SECONDS.’

‘Because …’ youngest son goes on to say, ‘if it’s too far we can pull my bike out of the back of the van and I can ride my bike and YOU CAN STAND ON THE PEGS.’

I laughed so hard at the mental picture of that, I forgot all about Crazy Richard.  And The Great Plastic Potato Salad Spoon Massacre of 2009.

the bairns

I totally dig my sons. 

I am of the ardent belief that God gave them to me because, while at times they can be Totally and Completely Exasperating, the majority of the time they enrich my life in immeasurable ways.

However. 

To get to the enriching part, I first have to discount the times they act like God never gave them brains.  

For example. 

Youngest son gets his Very First Aeropostale t-shirt last weekend, to which he has formed a serious attachment.  As in something akin to coveting.

Which is very bad.  I know.

But.  As a 9-year old, it’s all about being cool.  And apparently, Aeropstale is cool. Hard to pronounce.  Even harder to spell for that matter. 

And. 

It doesn’t come up in spell check.  You get ‘Apostle’.  And ya’ll know an Apostle shirt would be a totally different animal. 

But.  Aeropostale is allegedly very cool.  To a fourth grader.

Did I mention it’s COOL?

Whatevah.

So.

Youngest son wore the Enviable Shirt two days in a row, one more day than I would ever wear something before it took a whirl in the washing machine. 

BECAUSE IT WAS THE ONLY COOL SHIRT HE HAD IN HIS WHOLE DRESSER.

On Day 3 he wanted to wear his OCSHHIHWD to his Wednesday afternoon golf league.  Because then everyone would see he was cool.   

REALLYREALLYCOOL.

So.

He calls me at work and asks me if I can wash it before he went golfing.  Considering I work until 5:00 pm and his golf league begins at 1:00 pm, I would have to say … umm … negatory. 

See?  Case in point for Kids Not Using Their Noggins.

After much pleading and assurance he can’t possibly wear anything other than
THE  T-SHIRT, I instruct him to ask his older brother to wash it with a load of other clothes.

You see. 

One must be very specific with my children.  Because had I not added the clarification ‘with other clothes’, oldest son would have proceeded to wash that one item.  In the Big Washing Machine.  On the Great Big Super Duper Load setting.  With lots and lots of hot water.  And detergent.  And fabric softener.

Fade to black.

I call back a few hours later to check on their progress.  Youngest son says oldest son just left to go to the university library to get books for his research paper.

Pardon me.  I must pause a moment.

The fact oldest son is in college should shed some light on the fact that he is clearly more than capable of following simple instructions.

But.  Never assume anything in life.

It will only conjure Great Disappointment into being.

The story goes …

Oldest son apparently picked up the shirt, sniffed it, deemed it to ‘still be clean’, and tossed it into the dryer for his brother to ‘get the wrinkles out’.

Accck.

DOUBLEACCCCCK.

Yes, Great Disappointment.

Oldest son is terribly fastidious about his appearance.  He never wears his own clothes more than once and takes two showers a day.  He is the poster child for I Am A Very Clean Man.

The fact he would send his little brother out to play golf on a hot day in a previously-worn shirt?  Very un-cool. Makes me awfully sad.

Okay. Let’s get real here. 

I totally wanted to clobber him.

Being out of arm’s reach, I resorted to sending him a Really Nasty Text Message.  I even used phrases such as PROPERLY WASH.  In capital letters.  Ending with ‘ … knock off the half-assed way of doing things.’ 

AND I USED EVERY STINKIN’ ONE OF MY ALLOTTED 160 CHARACTERS.

He didn’t respond.

Shocker.

Hmmph.

We had a little Come-To-Jesus talk that night. 

And then, I slept light knowing he was plotting my death.

But.

I arrive at the office this morning to discover an email from oldest son.  The email was time stamped 4:22 am. 

4:22 am.

He had just finished his research paper, and he wanted me to review it for him before he turned it in.  The email also asked that I please not mention to his father what time he sent the email.

Did I mention it was 4:22 am?  As in nearly dawn.

The fact oldest son keeps backwards hours drives his father and I totally insane.  And if he thinks I’m Mean Mom … he knows that father is Even Bigger, Meaner, and Louder Dad.

I know. Hard to believe that’s even earthly possible, right?

Now.

If y’all are wondering why I posted The Secret of the Really Late Night Email here and have no worries about hubby reading it, rest assured he’ll never know.

And y’all don’t have his email address to tell him.

So there.

Because, my friends.  He doesn’t read my blog.

Don’t believe me?  Watch.

MARK EATS DRYER LINT.

Wait.  Waaaait.

See?  Nothing.

And.

After all the bad things I just sputtered off about on oldest son, I have to take a moment to impart that he is a brilliant writer.  And I enjoy reading his papers.  Because.  Well.  They make me awfully proud. 

I think, ‘Wow, that’s my son.’

THAT’S MY SON!

And for all the times they make me crazy, there are a hundred more times they make me feel incredibly blessed to be their mom.

Dirty T-Shirt in the Dryer Incident, notwithstanding.

can’t find a better man

Everything we do, we do for the kids.

Jon & Kate Gosselin

Jon Gosselin moving on on with his life.  3-1/2 weeks after they filed for divorce.  I am his biggest fan.

Jon Gosselin 'moving on' on with his life a mere 3-1/2 weeks after he and Kate filed for divorce. I am his biggest fan. I knew I couldn't say that and pull a straight face. Sorry.

 

I would pay a million bucks to get my paws on the J&K Gosselin’s Official Dictionary to see their definition of ‘everything?’  

Clarification.  If I had a million bucks

I’m quite certain I don’t have enough offspring nor drama in my life to warrant my own television series, so unfortunately I haven’t yet accumulated that much cabbage. 

For my kids, of course.

Okay.

I realize I previously stated I wasn’t going to ruminate further about Jon & Kate Plus 8 because I deemed them to just be Tedious and Tiresome News.  

I lied.  I humbly beg your forgiveness.

But.  Y’all know they just just had to go and get my back up again. 

So. 

This blog is being brought to you courtesy of Jon Gosselin and
I Am a Waste of Good Skin Enterprises.

The last Jon & Kate Plus 8 episode I endured was the Divorce Announcement a few weeks ago.  At that time, Kate commented in a solo  interview that she couldn’t get Jon to communicate and that … along with a troublesome myriad of other undisclosed issues … was the reason she was filing for divorce.  

At that revelation, I quirked an eyebrow in the general direction of the television screen.  Well.  As best as I could since I can’t really quirk an eyebrow.  I hear twitches and contortions like that are hereditary, and I don’t believe anyone in my family can raise one eyebrow without hitching up the other.

ANYWAY.

Along with the pretend raising of said eyebrow, I immediately thought well maybe he tried to talk to her and maybe … just MAYBE … she was being Typical Mean Ol’ Kate and when he asked the question ‘Can we talk?’ she smacked his cheek and sent him off on an errand.  On foot.  Ten miles away with instructions he’d better get there and back in five minutes or he’d see what a real beating was all about.

But, honestly.  Gosh.  She looked so forlorn when she said it I’ll shamefully admit it became one of those fleeting moments where I actually felt a wee bit o’sympathy for Mrs. Gosselin.  Cause she wasn’t being Mean Ol’ Kate.  She was bein’ real. And she seems much nicer when she’s bein’ real.

I know. It’s a ruse.

But.

I’d also be lying if I told you I wasn’t feeling mighty bad for Jon too.  See?  It was a terrible quandary for me and those Television People.

Poor Jon was sitting there, all slouched down, alone and teary eyed as he spoke about the demise of his family.  However.  As the interview progressed … ironically …. he started to just flat-out piss me off

I’m sure not knowing me personally, that wasn’t truly his intent.  But.  I give him kudos.  He succeeded in brilliant fashion.

The point in the interview when Jon made an angry, bitter comment about how the media twists everything to be something 180 degrees from the truth … I’m paraphrasing.  Please don’t try and look up that quote because you won’t find it.  

This is Lisa’s Recall and Opinion on Things. 

So.

When Jon went on to say they can’t live a ‘normal’ life because of all the paparazzi, I wanted to give him a Good-and-Hard Kate Gosselin Smack ™.  Or a really solid, well-aimed wooden baseball bat swat to the forehead.   I swear, I’d have knocked those free hair plugs right out of his pointed head.

My jaw dropped.  Yeah. I can do that for real.  Jaw dropping apparently is not hereditary as most people I know can do it.

But.

At that point I had to seriously ponder if Jon was living in some parallel universe or had some yet-undisclosed mental impediment that he couldn’t rationally connect the dots.  For goodness sake, talk about being a Ginormous Hypocrite, Mr. Jon Gosselin.  The media attention and the show is exactly why you earn the Big Bucks.  And the too-numerous-to count Big Vacations.  And the Really Large Ritchie Rich Mansion.  And why you live the opulent, I-Don’t-Even-Have-to-Work-Now life.

DAMNALLTHATMEDIAATTENTION.

And it’s refreshing to see that y’all stood your ground and backed all that media-hatin’ rhetoric by cancelling your show so to get back to some semblence of a normal life.

Because I know y’all do everything for the kids.

Folks, please keep that point-of-fact in mind as we continue.

So.

This week the supermarket tabloids boldly presented Exhibit ‘A’ revealing Jon Gosselin … after a lengthy separation consisting of a smidge less than four weeks … and his new-new girlfriend, 23-year old Hailey Glassman lounging about the French Riveria.   I’m not sure what happened to Deanna Hummel who was the alleged girlfriend who broke the camel’s back a few months ago.   Maybe she’s glad she got away.

Someone should ask her that, ya know?

Oh.  And for the record.  Hailey, current girlfriend, is the daughter of Kate’s plastic surgeon who performed her tummy tuck. 

I mean, really.  I defy you to find a more upstanding guy that Jon Gosselin.

Playah.

In his defense, Jon was quoted as saying that he had to ‘get on with his life’.  And really.  Who could deny a 34-year old still-married father of 8 cherubs the opportunity to get on with his life globe-hopping with a 23-year old party gal courtesy of The Gosselin Children’s Bankroll? 

Y’all are so harsh.  Geesh.

Especially, when he said he … and this is a direct quote … ‘thought about his kids every ten minutes or so while he was there’.  And.  Told a funny little tale about how Maddy, one of the older children, thought he was in Canada instead of the French Riveria.  Oh my gosh, I don’t think I’ve ever laughed so hard at the Cute Things Kids Say.

Hailey Glassman, complete with brilliantly classy friends and a weed pipe (note left hand).

Hailey Glassman, complete with brilliantly classy friends and a weed pipe (note left hand).

Hardee har har.

UTTERLYTRAGIC.

And if you take a gander at the photo stage right, y’all sleep easy tonight once you see that  Jon picked only the creme-de-la-creme when he decided to ditch his wife and 8 children.  I hereby dub this A Match Made in Heaven.
Further.
I read today that Jon is buying a Manhattan penthouse.  As in New York.  As in 140 miles away from his children in Pennsylvania.  With their money.  From the show about them. 
I see. 
Everything they do is for the children.
Cause they got mad parenting skillz.

there’s hippos in yonder water

(left-to-right)  Journalist, Henry Morton Stanley and Explorer, Dr. David Livingstone

Journalist, Henry Morton Stanley and Explorer, Dr. David Livingstone

 Dr. Livingstone, I presume?

 

I’m sure y’all know by now I loves me my history. However.  I will, with great reticent, admit that there are particular areas of the past in which I am either unschooled … 

Wait.  Did I just hear you gasp? 

Oh.  Sorry.  That was me.

Anyhooo.

Shall we continue?

There are some bits of history that I’ve got nothin’ for y’all.  A large, gaping, lonely void there, folks.  Some bits of the past I have not (yet) delved into and/or there are certain events-slash-eras that simply do not inspire me to dig any deeper. 

For instance, to me military history is an immense yawner.  While I love Revolutionary War-era history (read:  Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and the like) … I do not have much knowledge of the actual war whatsoever.  I can give you the basics such as dates, the reasons behind the war, and why the flag originally had 13 stars … but puhlease don’t ask me about battle strategy. 

Cause y’all know I’ll only lie, pretending I know something and all.

DON’TMAKEMEEMBARRASSMYSELF.

I also love Civil War-era history.  But.  Quiz me about the actual battles and scrimmages … and, again I’d only be able to give you the Clown College version of those events. 

‘Umm. Yeah. The North fought the South. 
They carried guns. They ate hardtack.’
 
‘The End.’

If I’m going to be introspective about my Love of History I’d have to deduce that the core of my passion for the subject comes from my curiosity about the people themselves.  The dynamics of their relationships.  The differences (and similarities) between the life I know now … and how people lived … and sometimes merely survived … in other points in time, in other places on the globe.

So.

All that being said, I think one of the greatest advancements in cable television was the introduction of the History Channel.

I DO DECLARE.

Someone better have gotten a promotion for that brainchild.

AMENANDHALLELUJAH.

I honestly think we ought to celebrate such an important accomplishment with an official, governmentally-recognized anniversary every year.  Oh yes.  And to get into the mood we could eat Wild Boar Acorn Brittle and drink Ye Olde Pond Water from pewter mugs.

But.

Tripping around the History Channel I found a new summer-filler series,
‘Expedition Africa’.   

Now. I know nothing about African history other than what I’ve read about our oldest living ancestor, ‘Lucy’, whose wee little 3.2 million year old bones were dug up somewhere near Ethiopia.

Oh.  Well yeah.  

There are also all the times we’ve taken family trips to Disney’s Animal Kingdom and done the whole safari trek ride in which we ultimately (every time!) manage to save the baby elephant from Evil Fake Poachers.

Or the early mornings where we sprawled in lawn chairs on the balcony of our well-appointed hotel room at the Animal Kingdom Lodge sipping coffee in Mickey Mouse cups watching the employees feed the giraffes grazing on the man-made savanna.

Beyond that.  Hmpphh.  I guess you’d say my well is dry.

I see vast opportunities in ‘Expedition Africa’. 

I do.

The premise of  ‘Expedition Africa’ is built around the true story of the travels of two gentleman, Dr. David Livingstone and Henry Morton Stanley.  British missionary-slash-explorer Dr. Livingstone traipsed about Africa in the mid 1800’s on various expeditions, for a myriad of reasons.  Notably, he was the first European to view the Mosi-oa-Tunya waterfalls in Africa, which he subsequently re-named ‘Victoria Falls’ after Queen Victoria. 

Cause y’all know that’s just so much easier to pronounce.

Livingstone did lots of other interesting, historically-important things in his time, but for purposes of this blog we’re going to skip ahead somewhat.  During what would ultimately be his last expedition, Dr. Livingstone apparently lost all contact with the outside world. 

For six years. 

A mighty long time.

So.

In 1869, the New York Herald newspaper dispatched journalist, Henry Morton Stanley, to go to Africa to track down the good, albeit elusive-and-could-actually-be-dead Dr. Livingstone.  I wonder how far down in the pecking order Stanley had to be to pull that assignment? 

‘Whoah.  Sorry, buddy.  Short straw again.  Sure sucks to be you.  Welp.  C’mon, Ed.  Let’s you and I go down to Broadway and catch up with the showgirls and do some manly-type carousing and let our man, Hank, here get off to his business.’

So.

After trekking nearly 1,000 miles over Hell’s Half Acre, the ending to the story is that Stanley eventually finds Dr. Livingstone, alive but unwell, suffering from malaria and dysentery, in the African town of Ujiji. 

Phonetically pronounced You-Gee-Gee.  In case you care.

You may not. 

I’m just sayin’ …

Then Stanley utters the now-famous words, ‘Dr. Livingstone, I presume?’

Blah blah blah.

Flash forward.

‘Expedition Africa’ takes four explorers with various outdoorsy-type skills (a navigator, a survivalist, a wildlife expert and a journalist) … and of course, the requisite camera crew …oh … and I’m fairly certain there are some off-camera emergency medics and whatnot … and re-traces what they believe to be the trail that Stanley took to track down Dr. Livingstone.  The four explorers are also tasked with hiring local porters to haul their goods and enlisting the services of two incredible Maasi warriors from Tanzania.

Now. 

If there is one thing that has far-and-away impressed me about the show are the two unlikely ‘stars’, the Maasia warriors.  And. I’m sayin’ this all serious now, CROSSMYHEART.

The Maasia are very, very remarkable men.

If they’ve given their names in the show, they have long-since eluded me. 

However. 

These are two young men who ought to be role models in every sense of the word for our young men today.  They present themselves with confidence … without any trace of arrogance.  They are respectful without giving away any of their own quiet pride in the exchange.  They are beautiful, graceful, brave, highly-skilled, multi-lingual warriers who exist in one of the harshest environments on the planet without an iota of complaint. 

It is just incredibly fascinating to watch them.

Okay. 

Back to our story already in progress.

‘Expedition Africa’ follows the group through widely diverse African terrain on their 970-mile journey to Ujiji.  The jungle treks, river crossings, and mountain climbs are interesting to watch.  The march across the arid deserts, quite a bit less so.  

I mean, really.  How much barren landscape, sweltering sun (read:  120-degree temperatures at high noon), and non-stop ruminations about losing the water-carrying donkeys can one mere viewer be asked to bear?

But. 

In one recent episode they trek out of the frying-pan flats and happen upon a lake filled with an army of roly-poly hippos.  The Maasai warriors soberly warn the group that hippos are the leading cause of death-by-animal-attack in Africa. That, in essence, y’all think they’re these cute, chubby, cartoony beasts … but given their girth and ornery disposition … you’d be best served to keep right on walkin’.

Well.

It wouldn’t be an exciting reality show if they heeded Good Advice, now would it?

The group’s cantekerous leader, Pasquale, deems the land adjacent to … and encompassing … the very-clearly-marked hippo trail their new campsite.  Then in a stroke of what can only be described as sheer genius, he sends the others down to collect drinking-cooking-clothes-washing water from the hippo swimming pool.

The fact they all actually went without a murmur of dissent … well … that surely shocked the pants off of me.

However. 

Upon seeing the water close up … filled with not only ginormous bathing mammals but also their … shall we put this delicately … large quantities of excretement … the group finally … FINALLY … pulls long, concerned faces.  They then proceed to move to another location and fill their water-bearing vessels with water that is merely milky in color and contains the Good Luck Charm of abundant tadpoles.  The presence of said tadpoles means the water is ‘clean enough’ to support life.

Where’s a good bottle of Dasani when y’all need it?

The group presents the water to Pasquale who blows a lid… stopping a lion’s-whisker short of calling them pansies … and marches them back to the not-so-sanitary hippo hole.  He proceeds to show them how they can filter the water using a big ol’ hole of ‘clean sand’.  Umm.  Sorry, Pasquale, but this viewer wouldn’t drink anything that hippos have even remotely come in contact with.

But.  I wonder what else he could get them to do? 

Amazing.

And where, pray tell, are the Maasai warriors when you need them?  Oh that’s right.  Having adequately warned their employers of Nearby Hippo Danger  … they are now required to stand an all-night vigil around the bonfires to keep the hippos from attacking their ill-positioned camp, that’s where.  I’m sure they were also pondering the ancient, perplexing mystery of Large Groups of Stupid People.

I believe the next episode is called ‘Expedition Kenyan Hospital Emergency Room’.

I’ll keep you posted …

kaboom

Brief post today as it’s the holiday weekend and we’ve been out and about.  The weather is nothing short of superb, and staying inside makes my skin itch.  So.  Firstly, be aware I do realize I’ve been slacking in my Blogging Responsibilities lately.  However, I very much appreciate the fact y’all keep checking in anyway. 

And. 

Well, I’m quite astounded. 

To put it mildly.

To quote my friends at Bartles & James …
‘Thank you for your continued support’.

My blog stats don’t tell me exactly where y’all are coming from.  Only that ya’ll are coming.  Which … well, let’s be honest.  It keeps me under the Great Delusion that y’all are waiting for me to say something worthwhile.

I’m working up to it. 

I swear.

So.  Today, as I plodded through the kitchen for the hundredth time with armloads of folded laundry … contrary to the popular belief of my husband and children that the process of washing and drying clothes in my book ends with the placement of said folded clothes into a laundry basket … sometimes … on occasion … I actually do put the clothes away … I pass by one of my bookshelves.

I know.  That last sentence is way too long and disjointed.  And.  I’m feeling too lazy today to edit myself. 

Read it twice.  Slowly.

Ready?  Let’s move on.

 Upon said bookshelves are …

Alright.  Best if you just take a peek.  A picture is worth a thousand words.


Oooh.  Ahhh.  We have fireworks. 

On a side note, please ignore the wallpaper. It seemed like
a charming idea when we had the house built 15 years
ago.  Not so much now.  But something I’d put into the
category of ‘Way Too Big of a Project to Think About This Summer”.


If you’re into ‘Spring’ or ‘Winter Day’ … fans, we have the
fireworks for you.  Red your color?  Perhaps it’s purple?

C’mon down.

PS:  I would love to be at the Naming of Fireworks Meeting.
Dig the one called ‘Perfect Timing’.  Heh heh heh …


The brightest idea of the fireworks shopping spree?  Safety glasses.
Two pairs in the event you get the first pair blown off.

Geesh.

In conclusion, I wish y’all a safe and fun-filled July 4th.  And don’t eat
the potato salad.  Y’all don’t know how long it’s been out.