Category Archives: adventure

Fire Department Fun on a Friday Night

This happened a few weeks ago, but I didn’t get around to posting this right away. Without further deferment:

I like to think that I am a responsible citizen. I don’t litter, I clean up after my dog, I try to turn down my music when I’m driving home with the windows down and it’s late. And when I’m not sure if a situation is okay, I call for help. I’ve called 911 when I realized traffic lights were out and people were just going for it – that was a dangerous situation. I’ve called the water department when the fire hydrant at the top of my street was just gushing water. I’ve called the cops when I saw a couple fighting and the guy shoved the girl. I’d rather waste their time then not do something and have a bad thing happen. See something, say something, right?

So yesterday, when I was out walking Ranger after work and we walked past a pile of coals, I paused. On the one hand, the coals were on the grass area between the sidewalk and the street, so no one’s home was in immediate danger. On the other hand, the coals were still red hot in the center and it was windy out. The grass all around the coals was charred. What would you do? I called Husband for backup and he said that it was probably fine but I could call the fire department if I really wanted to. So I asked him to send me their number. The thing is, there is no obvious number for the fire department. There is the safety office, the security desk, the fire code unit, and the fire marshals office. So many choices, but who should I call? I decided to start with the safety office and the guy I spoke to said that I could go into the neighboring houses and get a big bucket of ice water and just dump that on the coals, or I could call the fire department. Now, I know some of my neighbors, but not most of them, and definitely not the ones that were right next to the pile of burning coals. So I opted to call the fire marshal’s number next and explained the situation. He was very nice and said he would send some guys over. I asked if I should stick around and he said that would be very helpful because I could point out the exact location.

Being an upstanding citizen, I listened and stayed put. After I hung up, I looked down and realized that I did the same thing I always do when I get home. I changed out of my work clothes, took off my bra, and put on sweats and a t-shirt before taking the pup out for his walk. So now I was waiting for a truck full of firefighters with no bra on. Oh well…

The guys showed up on their truck, I waved them down, pointed out the coals, and with my arms arms strategically across my chest asked if I really needed to call them. They exchanged this look like, is this chick serious? And as the one firefighter terminated all danger by shuffling across the pile in his fire boots, he said it was okay but no, I probably didn’t need to call them. The whole thing was a bit anticlimactic to be honest.

I thought it was one of those situations where I might have saved my whole neighborhood from bursting into flame. Or I was overreacting to the danger potential and would end up wasting the firefighter’s time. But better safe than sorry, right? Maybe next time I will try to handle the situation myself. Or I’ll just take the time to put on a bra before interacting with a bunch of strangers. One or the other.

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Never Challenge a Trash-Picking Bibliophile

Oh man, I am so hype right now! We just scored an awesome trash pick – a big, wide, sturdy bookshelf. Part of my excitement stems from the fact that we found such a treasure. And part of my excitement stems from the way that I obtained said shelf.

After enjoying a delicious dinner at our favorite bar (burger night!!), we walk outside with plans to go home. The sun has gone down, but there is still a little light in the sky. The humidity of the day still drapes over the city, but the air is cooling. Walking hand in hand, my husband and I stroll down the sidewalk discussing how early it is and whether or not we can fit in a movie before bed.

And just like that – it appears. At first glance, an ordinary piece of furniture that someone is getting rid of. Upon further inspection, it is a big, wide, sturdy bookshelf – the kind of trash picks that a bibliophile dreams about. Well, I had to have it. The obstacle being my husband’s reluctance to first acquire and then transport such a large piece of furniture. So, seemingly to deter my interest, my husband says that I can have the shelf if I can load it into the car by myself.

Challenge accepted.

I scooted the shelf back and forth, carefully and slowly as to minimize any damage. Once I approached the curb, I placed my hands underneath one of the shelves and scooted the shelf sideways towards the street. Closer and closer to my goal – I asked for my husband to back the car up a bit, and the nearer it came, the more realistic my goal became! I persevered, put down the car seats, opened the trunk, moved all the junk that was in the way, and finally worked the shelf into the car. Success! And only with a tiny help from my husband at the end to get it all the way in the car.

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I now am the proud new owner of a big, wide, sturdy bookshelf. It just goes to show – never tell a bibliophile that they can keep the extra bookshelf if they can move it themselves. Challenge will be accepted and beat because BOOKS!!!

 

Shit Silver Lining

 

I’ve been trying to find the silver lining in things lately. I have a history of being negative, and sometimes I really let it build up. This is exactly what I did last week and I started to put a post together, but I got so pissed off that I didn’t finish. Here is me finishing it:

Sometimes you just end up having a shitty day. For me, it’s been a shitty week and it’s only Wednesday. Part of this was outside of my control, part of this was bad luck on my part, and part of this stems from my own inability to let things go. It’s a major flaw and causes me a lot of unnecessary pain. It’s something I really need to work on, but for now, it’s what inspired this rant.

Monday was stupid at work and I was hurting from my stupid knee, and I found out that the payments on one of my student loans skyrocketed. So I was in a bad mood. Tuesday wasn’t any better. I went to Wawa for lunch and some jackass was just sitting in his car in one of the front spots so I had to circle the building several times to find a parking space and ended up having to walk further because of it. (Why have I never tried to get a handicap tag for this knee thing?) Then Wawa didn’t have the soup I wanted! Stupid shit to get upset over, but that’s what I do sometimes. Then on my way back to the office, I take a turn a little too fast and almost get in an accident. So now I’m pissed at myself on top of everything.

Then I had to stay late at work and got stuck in traffic on my way home. I had to take DibKitty to the vet, so I walk Ranger as quickly as possible and pack up Dib and go. On our way to the vet I’m trying so hard to not laugh at Dib’s howls of protest. Then he howls REALLY loud. And then I smell it. Once we get to the vet (which was frustrating in itself because some asshole just stopped their car at the entrance to the parking lot to let someone out. At least put your hazard lights on so I know I can go around you!), I confirmed that Dib had in fact shit in the carrier. Awesome.

The technicians were very nice about it and offered to clean out his carrier, which I gratefully accepted. They walked out of the room and came back in and said Dib was actually due for a fecal sample and did I want to use his deposit from the carrier? I readily agreed. Shit happens, but sometimes it can be put to good use – there’s my silver lining!

That being said, while we were waiting to pay three dogs came in and kept trying to sniff at Dib in his carrier. He growled and growled, and then he pissed himself. Motherfucker. Dib got a bath last night and I’m still in a pissy mood. It was just my luck.

That’s what I wrote last week. And yes, I had a lot of stupid stuff happen all at once and it snowballed into a huge scribble over my head. But as I’m writing this now, I’m in such a better place. This is probably in part because last week was such a shitty week that when compared, although nothing extraordinary has happened, this week is so much better by default. So maybe the silver lining of last week’s shit was the ability to appreciate this week in all its ordinariness. Maybe that’s how everyone else does it, maybe I’m onto something here.

Hunting Blondes at Wawa

 

For those of you that don’t know, I started a new job recently. One of the nice things about this job is that it is about five minutes from Wawa. Although I try to pack lunch when I can, sometimes that doesn’t work out and I go to Wawa. Yesterday was one of those days.

It started off simply enough, I was driving back from dropping off some paperwork at the doctor and headed in the direction of Wawa. I was behind a silver CRV and while driving around the bend I noticed that of the three brake lights cars have only one was working. That’s kind of a problem – and it isn’t likely that this car owner knew. So I made a decision. I decided that it was my mission to find this person and inform them that their brake lights were out. Of course this was all banking on the idea that the CRV turned into the Wawa parking lot. I wasn’t about to go on a crazy adventure. Lo and behold – the CRV pulled into the Wawa parking lot.

I followed the car around the building and then a spot opened up that the CRV had already past, so I parked and tried to get a good look at the car owner as I walked into Wawa. I could tell that the driver was a woman and that she was blonde. I assumed that would be plenty of information and I could tell her about her brakes.

Upon entering Wawa, I looked around. There were blonde women everywhere. Wawa was crowded as usual and I almost gave up. I then thought about making an announcement to the whole of the Wawa population. Finally I decided to just start somewhere, so I went up to a blonde woman and asked if she drove a CRV. She said yes. I told her that her brake lights were out except for the third one. Her face was full of panic and upset as she confirmed that her black CRV was the one I was talking about. I said no, it was a silver CRV with the brake lights out. She was relieved and informed me that her car had just gotten back from the shop. She then wished me luck. It was then that I realized at least two of the many blonde women in the Wawa I was currently standing in owned a CRV.

Another person would have given up, but at that point I had already invested my time in finding the owner of the silver CRV with the brake lights out. I asked two other blonde women and they did not own a CRV. Finally, I found her. I told her, and she was so grateful. And just like that, my mission was complete.

Adventures in Voting

In the past three years, my voting location has changed three times. I haven’t moved, but they keep changing it. This hasn’t stopped me from voting, but it certainly makes it more of a chore and a pain. I went and voted today as is my right and responsibility as a U.S. citizen. Getting there however, was not easy.

First, I didn’t know where the location was although the street was familiar. I put it in my GPS to be safe and ended up in an apartment complex. I knew this wasn’t right, but this is what my GPS kept telling me. I circle the lot for a second and decide to follow the guy who was also driving in circles. It seemed promising.

So I start following this guy. He was on the older side and just had that “I’m about to vote” vibe coming off. After leaving the parking lot that I was in, I only had to drive down the road a few yards to get to where I actually had to be. Mind you, I could barely tell this is where I was supposed to be. There were three balloons that were shriveled and dangling from a post. There was also a sign. It was an all-white sign with the faintest outline of “Vote Here” written in bubble letters with a black sharpie. That’s it. In my opinion, not enough: there should be no doubt in my mind where I need to go to vote. I’m talking neon-flashing lights.

So about-to-vote guy turns in here and I continue following him. We go down a short drive and there is the tiniest building. The parking lot was pathetic. And I’m supposed to vote here? There were no open spots and there were even a few areas where people had invented parking spaces. I’m driving behind this guy and wondering where the hell I am supposed to park. Part of me wanted to say fuck it and just turn around and go home. But I had come so close, I needed to see it through. Plus I knew if I left with the intention of coming back later that I wouldn’t really come back. Suddenly I see it: an open spot!

With victory in my heart, I prepare to turn into the open spot. Then I realize that while there is an open spot, it was not going to be possible to maneuver into it. See, there were two cars on either side of the spot. And BOTH idiots had parked over the line. So the space was normal-sized to begin with, but then car A determined that those lines were just there to decorate and didn’t have any practical purpose (at least that is my theory), so she parked with her tires just to the right of the line. Then car B comes along and instead of parking next to car A, decides to once again ignore the lines and park in the next spot over but on the left of the line. So there were two cars, each over the line on opposite sides of this spot so that car C (me) could in no feasible way fit into that spot without scratching the others cars. Granted, they deserved it. But car C is not mine so I really need to take care of her.

Just when I started to get REALLY angry, two people walked out of the tiny building and headed towards their cars. The first guy was in an invented spot and so about-to-vote guy opts not to use that spot and instead pulls a K turn to park where the second guy was pulling out. I was considering using that invented spot when a third guy comes out of the building. His invented spot seemed a little better, so I took that one. I park the car and head towards the building.

I open the door and look around. There are multiple doors, none of which are labeled. I turn to the left and look at the three doors. Two of them are bathrooms and one looks like a closet. I establish that this is not right and turn back to the main hall. Mind you, this is a small building and one would think that it wouldn’t be difficult to navigate, but alas I have problems. I hear voices ahead and so that is the direction I go towards next. I open the door and finally I have found where I need to vote.

It takes me all of two minutes to tell them my name, have them find my signature in the booklet, sign next to my name in the booklet, have them find my ticket, and walk over to the machine. I get in the machine and spent maybe another two minutes reading and answering all the additional questions they ask.

All in all, it took at least twice as long to navigate the parking lot as it did to vote. Why do they make it so hard? Why do they keep changing the voting locations? I think it is because they enjoy making me crazy. Although voting in this election may seem unimportant verses a presidential election, I get really frustrated when people blatantly say that they’re not going to vote. It’s your right. It is also your responsibility. But when voting ends up being this difficult, I can almost understand not going out to the polls. It certainly was an adventure, and by adventure I mean a pain in the ass.