Sometimes Soccer Sucks Less Than Shopping

Rick’s weekly soccer games scare the hell out of me. My idea of a fun Friday night has absolutely nothing to do with observing a group of testosterone-driven, middle-aged men, repeatedly colliding into one another, chasing a little black and white ball back and forth across an indoor field, only to walk off the field 50 minutes later with a variety of bruises, bumps and lumps.

I weasel out of the games any chance I can, and tonight was one of those nights.

Rather than hang out and watch the carnage, I dropped Rick off at the sports complex and headed to The Dollar Tree for some good ‘ol fashion dollar-spendin’ fun. (I bought a bad ass little robot book light, by the way – Probably the best dollar I’ve ever spent – Well, aside from that one night at the ballet, I suppose).

As I’m browsing the dollar depot aisles, finding all sorts of random crap I know I don’t need, I can’t help but hear the voice of one of those parents who thinks it’s kosher to stand in the middle of a public setting,  and yell at the top of her lungs to a child who she presumes to be the obnoxious one.

The shouting was constant. And the mother’s sharp tongue only received the response of a sweet, small, squeaky voice that seemed to want only to please the aggressively-toned woman.

“Well! Which one do you want?! And hurry up…Just hurry up!”

“Okay. Um. I want the ladybug!”

“You can’t have the ladybug! Pick one! Pick one! You know what, never mind…you’re taking too long!”

I thought to myself, “What a ridiculous reaction to the indecisiveness of a little seven year old.”

The repeated hollering and berating continued throughout the store until the woman decided to finalize her purchases at the front counter. At this point, I was able to catch a look at the little girl – somewhat plump, long, brown hair, big brown eyes and a smiley face. The adult that was attached to her was a slovenly, pathetic excuse of a human being. She was probably about thirty years old.

After making my assessment, I turned to resume to my shopping spree. The woman stood at the checkout counter and  suddenly screamed:

“Are you kidding me?! JESUS CHRIST! GET over HERE! C’mon!

She grabbed the little girl by the arm, pivoted around to head back into the aisles, and yanked the little one’s arm so hard she tripped on her flip flop, and fell face down onto the floor. The parental unit spun back around and said:

“OH MY GOD! Get up! Get up! Right now! I swear! You can’t do anything right! You never do anything right!” She reached to grab the child’s arm again and said, “I am going to break your wrist!” She dropped the child’s hand, and headed into the aisles solo to retrieve whatever it is she still needed. The little girl scrambled to pick herself up from the floor.

The sweet, little voice said:

“My flip flop, mommy. My flip flop.”

“I don’t give a damn about your flip flop. Just wait ’til we get home!”

“I’m so sorry mommy – I’m sorry! I’m sorry!”

My stomach turned so hard, I felt like I was truly holding back vomit.

In that moment, I felt stunned. Paralyzed. I thought to myself, “I have to do something. Or at least say something. But wait. What if a comment would somehow get twisted around and then taken out on that little baby once the woman was out of the public eye? What if a comment would only make things worse?”

By the time I pulled myself out of my head and back into reality, the pair was gone.

I’ve felt sickened by this incident all evening. I feel mad at myself for not doing something, even though I still don’t know what I could have done. I wish I could go back to the store and take the little girl away from that woman and drop her off at some sort of kid home, or something (they do make those, don’t they?).

How could somebody treat a little kid like that?

Anyway. I didn’t know how to handle that. And it’s bothering me. And the only solution I know of for tonight is to pray. I will pray for that little girl, I will pray for her beast of a mother, and I will pray for the knowledge that will allow me to handle such a situation better, moving forward.

And maybe next week, I’ll just bite the bullet and go to the damn game.

I didn’t get a real shot of this woman, but I found this, instead. It’s a fairly accurate representation of what she looked like.

(http://pagedeclasse.recit05.qc.ca/fr/page.php?pkss=3106294774&site=stars)

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I Am Famous AND Special

So, I’m officially famous. As you may already know, my dog became a local celebrity several months back. Yes, I was a little envious, but now that I’m experiencing my own rise to stardom, I’m finding it easier to deal with with those previous thoughts of jealousy and resentment that I had developed towards my pet.

Last week I was hired (without pay) to be a swimsuit model. How exciting, right?!? Not so much. I was given less than 24 hours notice to drop 15 lbs., hit the tanning bed 4-5 times, visit my girls at In The Pink and round up my swim suit from God knows where I had stashed it post-swim season.

*Sidenote: I was not actually asked to do any of these things – but I’m an avid fan of Top Model (don’t judge me), so I knew what was up. I wasn’t about to kick off my modeling career without proper preparation.

Come Thursday morning, I arrived to my photo shoot with a Starbucks Green Tea Frappucino in hand, a ghostly-pale tone to my skin, a five-o-clock shadow on my legs and a super-hot swimsuit in my bag. Hey, one out of four ain’t bad, right?

I got my hair and makeup done and I put my cute swimsuit on. I was ready to roll.

We started the big picture-taking process and I felt like a superstar. Okay, actually I felt like a complete dork, but it was fun and the photographer was nice, so I was excited. Technical malfunctions (i.e. genetics) spurred a sudden scrambling for various props – life jackets, towels, coats – anything that could be thrown around my neck and used to cover up my…genetics.

The photographer explained that my photos would be used in a Special Olympics campaign and that my genetics would not be so appropriate for such a thing. At this point, two thoughts occurred to me:

  1. Once again, my genetics were causing problems for myself and others. Damned genetics.
  2. I had been asked to assist in a photo campaign for the Special Olympics. Really?

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Rock Paper Scissors is Stupid

There are so many things in life that we are asked to accept just because everybody else does.  By nature, we resist change, and we squirm at the idea of discomfort. I’m lucky enough to work in an industry that authorizes creativity, fosters evolution and forces change.

I caught the end of a super-inspiring movie the other night, Notorious, the life story of Biggie Smalls. I had hoped that the ending would turn out differently than it did, but what can you do? Anyhow, the movie was an overall mess, in my opinion. But it did a good job of reinforcing an overall theme that was upheld by the late and great B.I.G.: “You can’t change the world if you can’t change yourself.”

Statistically, it takes 21 days to form a habit – good or bad. Implementing long-term change will take more than just “a go at it.” It will demand dedication, repetition and enthusiasm. (And in my opinion, that last element trumps all others).

I have no idea where the piece below came from. It’s followed me to three different jobs – it hangs next to my computer. It’s my unorthodox reminder that when it comes to change, anything is fair game – including the timeless game of R.P.S.

It also reminds me that we can easily find ourselves doing illogical things when we stop asking questions. There’s almost always another route. And as the case may be, the alternate route is probably painful, distressing and vulgar – But it’s also probably well worth it in the end.

 

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Stripper Shoe Sunday

While in Wichita this past weekend, we ate breakfast at the local Home Town Buffet. I like that place for a variety of reasons. The food is never-ending, the English muffins are grilled and the milk supply is limitless.

The typical Sunday HTB crowd is elderly and/or disabled (not exactly sure what that says about us, but whatever). This mix of people, coupled with the 50’s pop elevator music that plays over the audio system, makes for a fairly calm and uneventful dining experience. Every once in awhile, however, a primo people watching opportunity will walk through the door.

For example, I dubbed this past Sunday “Stripper Shoe Sunday” at HTB.  I saw my first stripper-shoe patron upon seating myself with my first plate of food. She was wearing black patent leather stiletto stripper shoes, with hot-pink heels. She wore skin-tight jeans (at least two sizes too small) and a see-through baby-doll  T-shirt that showed off her brassiere. She sat at a table with 5 small children and a man. Although she did look like she could have been a stripper, she didn’t much walk like a stripper. Maybe I’m being presumptuous, but it seems to me that a stripper (of all people) would know how to walk in stripper shoes. This gal did not. She stomped around the restaurant, filling wee glasses of OJ for the kiddos, and piling up plates of waffles for herself. She was a sight to see.

But then, about ten minutes later, another lady walked in wearing a pair of brown and tan stripper shoes. This lady carried herself in a much more professional manner. I thought to myself, “This chicky may not be a stripper at all – she may indeed be a professional.” Without asking – something I was not willing to do – I just couldn’t be for sure. But I was pretty positive this lady was not on her way to church.

I’ve never been really big on shoes. I know some ladies collect shoes like I collect free pens, but I’m more the type to find a couple pairs I like (usually a black pair and a brown pair), and stick with them until the very end. Loved ones end up having to pry my old, worn out shoes from my hands – or take them from me when I’m not looking and throw them in the trash.

But this HTB Stripper Shoe Sunday event really made me feel like I was missing out on something. These ladies had such fun, sexy shoes. Does that mean that they have fun, sexy lives, too? I’ve never owned a pair of stripper shoes. But if I had a pair, would I be a fun, sexy person? If I had a pair, would I strap them on, head out to the grocery store, and strut around like a proud peacock? Would I get all dolled up on Sunday morning, in my Sunday best, to hit up the local HTB?

This lady wore her stripper shoes to the last trade show I attended. She was working the booth. I saluted this lady for wearing these shoes all day long at a trade show. You go girl.

Trade Show Pumps

(Ever get to the bottom of your blog, and then realize that there’s a good chance it makes next to no sense to anybody but yourself? I’m afraid that just might happen here.)

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What’s Wrong With His Urinal?

I mentioned this earlier today through one of my Facebook/Twitter rants – but I’d really like to try to understand what in the world posesses a woman to escort her young-man/child into a public ladies room with her.

Twice this week I have exited my restroom stall, only to find a young boy – approximate age 11-13 – washing his hands in the sink in front of me.

I’ve never claimed to be a “kid” person, so maybe I’m just missing something, here.  But isn’t there some sort of cut-off age in which the youngster is allowed to be free, and exist in the land of urinals and testosterone?  I understand that the wee ones require assistance and therefore need to be escorted.  But what age do we stop that sort of thing?  Seven-ish?

All I know is, it feels a little more than awkward to come flying out of a public facilities stall – balancing purse on one arm, jacket on the other, fluffing the hair and yanking the skirt from your nether-regions – only to find pre-pubescent boy standing in front of me with a fearful expression of bewilderment on his face, and a used paper-towel in his hands.

I should think that these young fellows would be pretty excited to graduate to the world of Mens restrooms.  I hear they have different facility options in Mens restrooms than we do – and I know that they have a completely different gender ratio.  I can’t imagine that these poor, near-teen boys think it’s appropriate to hang out in the Ladies room, right?  And what do their friends think?  Or is this some sort of craze?  Is that why I’ve seen a rash of young men in the Ladies restrooms lately?  I just don’t know.

But just in case, I think I’ll print up a little flier – the size of a business card.  I’ll keep copies in my wallet and I’ll dispense them to these crazy moms as I see fit.  My message will read something like this:

“It appears as though your son is experiencing an erection.  Should he not be allowed to go to his own bathroom?”

Maybe she’ll let him go be a grown-up next door in Man’s-Land next time.

Ladies - The Wynn Las Vegas, Stocksdale

I took this picture at The Wynn, Las Vegas – by the way.  There were no 13 year-old boys in that restroom.

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Meow.

Thanks to @kylerohde for turning me onto a new site.  I found videos that were hysterical, but best of all, I found a picture of this cat/keyboard shirt, that I’ve pasted below (Link to the source site is attached to picture).

catkeyboard

This shirt reminded me of all the hip, slick and cool shirts I used to wear when I was a little girl – back when I couldn’t understand why nobody outside of my family wanted to be my friend.

I like to look at things like this and ponder: “How in the world did somebody come up with such a thing?”

I mean, seriously.  I guess I imagine some cat enthusiast, who happened to be an artist, was sitting around one day and thought to himself, “I think I’ll fuse a few of the most inspirational things I can think of, and I’ll display them all proudly abreast a T-shirt!  I’ll combine my passion for music, with my infatuation for physics and my love for felines.  I’ll come up with some really outstanding pictorial of cats, playing keyboards, in outer space!  And each cat will be wearing a different colored T-shirt – That’s it!  Cat’s on a T-shirt, wearing T-shirts!  It’ll be brilliant.”

I’m saving my money so that I can afford to splurge on this random piece of apparel.  I’m going to buy it and wear it proudly.  Every time I put it on, I’m going to think of the insane creativity behind the piece of art; I plan to derive a great deal of inspiration from this future purchase.  Don’t be surprised if you see me rockin’ it at our next encounter.

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If At First You Don’t Succeed, Beg.

We splurged last night and decided to dine at Longhorn Steakhouse.  No bread with butter.  No sweet potato with brown sugar and caramel sauce.  No croutons.  But we did get to eat something other than chicken for a change, and we even had a little ranch dressing atop our leafy greens.  It was so great!

The food is always yummy at Longhorn, and the service is typically pretty top-notch.

“Paul” was the name of the waiter-fella who helped us out last night.  He was a real go-getter.  He broke the ice at our table by letting us know that if we needed to get his attention, we could just feel free to “throw the salt and peppers shakers” at him.  We didn’t take him up on that offer.

Paul brought our waters out right away.  Our salads took a little longer than they should have, though.  We probably waited a good 15 minutes for them – but Paul did unnecessarily top our waters off a couple of times during this period.  “E” for effort, Paul.  When Paul brought our entrees to the table, Rick had to remind him that he had requested a side of sauteed onions.  Paul apologized, and returned with the side item promptly…and he topped our waters off a third time.  We were more than well-hydrated.

All in all, our dinner was very nice.  Paul dropped the ticket, Rick handed over the plastic, Paul re-dropped the ticket with the plastic in tow, and walked away.

But just as Rick pulled the ticket out of the little, black book, Paul was back again!  I thought to myself, “If this boy tries to pour more water into my glass…”  But no, Paul had something to say:

“Hey guys-Just wanted to say sorry for my head is a little spotted right now…I just found out today that my dog that I’ve had since it was 1 which is now 10 might have to have leg surgery, so I’m just not quite in it tonight.  Just wanted to let you know and thank you again for being so understanding.”

Um.  Awkward moment!

When Paul walked away, Rick looked up at me and said, “Is that a last ditch effort to beg for a better tip, or what?”  I just kept trying to shove steamed vegetables into my face to keep myself from laughing aloud.  But then Rick (my dear husband who is going deaf, I swear)  leaned in and said, “What exactly did he say?  Did he say that his dog had to have Lasik surgery?”

At that point, I lost it.

dog glasses

Like to learn more about dogs that require leg surgeries?  Here’s a fun-filled posting about a little dog that had to have a 5th leg removed.  No, I do not believe that Paul is related in any way to this particular dog.

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