TTDNST: Old Man Wes Edition

I noticed today that the days are growing longer again and I actually get to see a little sunlight every day. It’s amazing what a little sunlight can do for a person! Summers up here are lovely, and spring isn’t bad either, but making it through the winter is like a grueling endurance hike.

But! That’s not the focus of today’s post because today is Thursday, which means it’s time to present this Thursday’s Thing That Does Not Suck!

The back story on this week’s Thing is that my husband is old. Not old as the hills, or older than Moses, but he is older than me. This is not saying much, as I am still basically dewy-fresh at the ripe age of 23, but Wes is nearly out of his twenties (which he assures me this doesn’t bother him in the slightest).

The problem (and hilarity) is, The Universe thinks Wes is a lot older than he really is. He is continually getting mail from companies trying to entice him with dentures, arthritis medication, AARP subscriptions, and medicare benefits. This harassment has been going on for years now and it quite simply does not ever get less hilarious.

I had already selected something else for this week’s Thing That Does Not Suck, but when I walked into the house today and was greeting with this, I knew I had to post it immediately:

Please note the cheerful blue inscription on the outside of this envelope: Free Pre-Paid Cremation! If that doesn’t pique your interest you must already be dead! *rim shot!*

So long as there are things like my husband being harassed by people who think he’s ancient, there is a reason to keep going. He may not win that pre-paid cremation, but as long as we know we have the option to pre-pay something like that I figure life’s worth living.

I don’t know how he got on a marketing agency’s “Old People” list, and I don’t know why, but I’m going to take as a sign that no matter what the economy does, no matter what happens in international affairs, and regardless of the outcome of the Superbowl, someone other than me enjoys telling my husband he’s old and that’s good enough for me.

Sweet Cracker Sandwiches

Some things going on in my head today:

  • Pregnancy tests. They have these ones at the store that scream with bright letters “Test Five Days Early!” but all the research I’ve done has led me to believe that they are unlikely to report accurately that early and it’s an expensive way to indulge your impatience. Still, though, that marketing is so effective. I can imagine that if a person were trying to get pregnant, the possibility would taunt them mercilessly.
  • Hip Seattle coffee guys. I met a friend at a charming little coffee place last night and the guy who helped me was so hip I wanted to smack him. He was wearing the standard Seattle hippy garb of hemp hat over dirty long hair, an ancient and unintelligible t-shirt, and ripped jeans, and he called me “Dude” so often I was inclined to douse him with boiling espresso until he acknowledged that 1) I’m TOTALLY a chick and 2) Calling someone dude forty times per minute does not a hip guy make. So take a shower, eat some meat, and shop somewhere other than Goodwill.
  • I’m trying to win my company a $25,000 grant and I just submitted our materials today. I’d really like to win (visit here if you want to see the fruits of my labor {and maybe vote for us?}) but am not sure what will happen. Essentially, I’m thinking about how cool it would be to win but trying not to get my hopes up.
  • The award show season may be the most distracting time of year for me at work because pretty dresses and shoes are very alluring, moreso than my work sometimes.
  • Oh my sweet cracker sandwiches it’s getting late and I have a casserole to make!

What’s going on in your head today?

The Exquisite Exhaustion

Due to increasingly gloomy weather conditions and a marked lack of sleep last night, today’s post will be brief and short on meaning and profundity. When I get my eight hours of sleep, I am on fire and can write like a hopped-up squirrel. At considerably less than that, though, my creativity and alertness drop like leaded flies.

The writing class was loads of fun, and very informative to boot! The teacher is a lovely lady and she did a commendable job of keeping the class substantive, fast-paced, and personal. We spent the majority of our time doing writing exercises, some of which were fun while others were challenging, and the rest of our time reading excerpts from great authors and analyzing them.

She invited us to submit works-in-progress to the class for constructive critiquing, so I ponied up one of the pivotal chapters from my novel for their perusal. There was a wide variety of writers there, everyone from poets to children’s writers, so I’m looking forward to getting some good feedback.

It’s a scary feeling to have my work out there, floating amid other people. I worry a bit that all this is for naught and my novel is a paltry little work of fluff but no one I know will tell me because they don’t want to crush me. Then I tell myself to get a grip and just let people see it already. If it takes a village to raise a child, I see no reason why it can’t take a village to edit a novel as well.

We did one exercise in particular that was a lot of fun and I’ll share it with you so you can try for yourself. It’s called “The Exquisite Corpse” and is nowhere near as macabre as it sounds. A bunch of philosophers invented this to give them something to do whilst drinking.

You need at least two people, a writing implement, and a lined sheet of paper. Write two lines of text on the paper, about anything you want. Then, fold over the sheet so the top line is hidden but the bottom line is visible. Hand it to the other person, who will read the second line you wrote and then write two lines of their own. They fold the sheet down too, hiding their first line, and hand it back to you so you can read their second line and write two more of your own. Repeat until you feel like it and then read the whole thing.

It can be total nonsense or it can be surprisingly eloquent, but either way it’s a fun way to see how perspective and context can change the direction of a sentence.

Alas, my last reserves of energy have left me and I’m going to shuffle down to the kitchen to join my husband is dinner preparations. If any of you try “The Exquisite Corpse” be sure to let me know! In fact, and even better, share with me your results. It would be a lot of fun to hear what everyone comes up with!

Hobbity Nonsense

I’m sitting here at work, clocked out, eating cold spaghetti and whiling away the last few minutes before I’m due to meet my friend so we can carpool to the writing class tonight. I’m very excited (The instructor is baking brownies! I can be bought with food!) but a tad nervous because this falls so far away from my daily routine.

Normally, I leave work and go straight home so I can write a blog post, take care of the puppy, make dinner, and then socialize with my husband. I come home at the same time, I have dinner ready around the same time, we watch roughly the same amount of TV every night, we go to sleep at around the same time. Wash, rinse, repeat.

I like our routine, it’s a good one. We get lots of sleep, we have healthy meals every night, we get lots of time to spend chatting about this, that, and the other. I’m really very comfortable in that little routine we’ve grooved for ourselves into the road of our lives.

Which is exactly why it’s good that I’m throwing a wrench in the whole thing for a short while.

I’m too young to get crotchety and stuck in my ways, so I’m going to shake things up just a bit. The class may only be for five weeks, but I’ll be meeting new people, learning new things, and varying our routine just ever so slightly.

It feels good, but also a tad uncomfortable. I don’t know exactly how this evening is going to go and that gives me a thrill that’s part fear and part curiosity. Trying new things is fun, but for me small doses are preferable to huge heaping ones. As the great Bilbo Baggins once said, “It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, walking out your front door…”

An Assault on the Weekend

Today’s shaping out to be a pretty good day. I left work a tad earlier than normal and saw the sunshine for the first time in about a million years. I ate pizza for lunch (’twas amazing. Has there ever been a culinary masterpiece to rival a good pizza? I think not). Not to mention I got to try holding an assault rifle for the first time.

It was a lot bigger than I thought it would be. I guess when you’re used to seeing huge steroid-wracked men run around jungles carrying rifles they can look a tad smaller than they do in real life. The rifle was also surprisingly heavy. It wasn’t even loaded but my arms felt tired after holding it for just a few moments. I can’t even imagine what it would feel like when it’s full of bullets.

I’m very lucky in that I’m not clueless around guns and, as such, don’t really feel scared around them at all (Notable exceptions being when the guns are pointed at me, in which case I’m as scared as any other sap). My Dad made sure my brother and I were gun-literate so as to ensure we wouldn’t have any ignorance-related accidents with said guns.

The only problem is that now I really want to go to a shooting range. Not to shoot with a rifle, mind you, because I reckon a rifle would plumb dislocate my girly little shoulder, but with a handgun. Something small caliber would suit me just fine.

Would you like photographic proof? Allow me to indulge you:

Now, a picture this incriminating just begs for a good caption. In the spirit of Friday, I would like to invite all of you (Yes, even those of you who never think you’re as clever as you really are. Actually, especially you) to volunteer captions for this photo. I’ll kick things off and then I would love to spend my weekend reading your ideas. Don’t leave me hanging!

Here’s my caption: Just another Libertarian running around with a gun.

Ok, muchachos: Your turn!