Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Stories

You can't walk out of a hospital without having stories. Your stories, other people's stories, everything. You meet someone in the lobby and they're going to have a story. Why are they here? Well, unless they work here, someone they love is getting special care, something that can't be cured with a box of tissues and meds from the drugstore. It's a level up.

The lady sitting across from us pointed her chin at the door. "You just keep an eye on that. This beeper doesn't work." She held up the flashing lighted device in disdain. "The surgeon came out and it never notified me!"

We looked at each other for a beat, each wondering why the other was here but not really wanting to chat. She went first.

"I've been here 10x so far in the past several months."

Ouch. We all winced. 10x? Must be serious. Fuck.

"Cancer. Stage 4. The treatment isn't working. After this surgery I'm selling everything I own and taking him to Mexico for a treatment they don't approve here. It probably won't work. I don't care. We've run out of options and I just can't give up."

We nodded gravely. We hugged, complete strangers in a strange waiting room. Something caught in my throat and I turned away. Worlds collide in hospitals and people are never the same when they collide. We become amalgamations of each others' experiences. In this way, we are never truly separate, and never truly alone.

Monday, July 9, 2018

GO AWAY (solicitors not welcome!)

People just came to the door, complete strangers. I cracked open the door suspiciously and saw two young girls standing several steps away. I instantly regretted not having the proper welcome mat.



Strangers: "Hi! Oh don't you look comfortable!"

I looked down self-consciously at my telework outfit.

(Just kidding but I will fucking buy this
and keep it by the front door for next time!)

Strangers: "Well anyway we are walking around the neighborhood today. Isn't it nice out?"

Me (interrupting): "So how can I help you?"

Strangers: "Oh! Well we are here to talk to you about your energy bill."

FUCK, I thought. They're about to get into it. They had that look.



Me: "Just so you know, I don't buy anything, sign anything or give out any information."

Strangers: "Oh! Of course. We aren't selling anything. Anyhoo, you know how there's a label on your electric bill? Be a doll and why don't you login to your account and we'll show you. It restricts access to clean energy but we can help."

Me: "I don't have a login."

Strangers: "OHMYGOD what?? You still use a <gasp> PAPER bill?"

Me: "Yeah. Anyway so thanks..."

Strangers: "Oh that's okay, if you want to go find the paper bill, we'll wait!"

Me: "I don't have one right now. Anyway, thank you but..."

Strangers: "Oh that's okay, you can go look for one!"

Me: "Um, no thanks, I don't have one, and anyway..."

Strangers: "Well, we can come back in a few weeks!"

Me: "No, that's okay, I don't give out info, buy anything, sign anything or receive house calls."

They looked crestfallen.



I softened slightly.

Me: "Well, if you want to leave brochures or business cards or whatever, I'll look at them later."

Strangers: "Oh funny you should mention that, we don't have anything, we just ran out. Anyway, think about it. Clean energy!"

Me: 


They finally left and I told hubby. "The whole time, they were standing right next to the trash can probably wondering what the heck is wrong with these people because it smelled so bad!"

He said, "ha, oh you should have said, "Sorry about the smell, that's just the last people who came here trying to sell something. Boy they put up a hell of a fight. Anyway, what can I do for you?"



In the meantime, we are now looking for special police DO NOT CROSS tape for the front door!

Sunday, June 24, 2018

How to get kicked out of an open house real estate showing

Me: "Want to go to an open house just for fun?"

Hubby: "Sure."

Me: "Uh oh, what if the realtor thinks we're serious and starts a sales pitch?"

Hubby: "We'll just go in, start looking around and say things like, "I'll tell you right now, this wall's gotta come out. And the driveway's not big enough for the trailer. Where's Uncle Billy going to live?? Can we dig a well out back? This might be a good room for all your feral cats!"

Saturday, February 10, 2018

I better not get the flu.

Most colds have an incubation period of 3-5 days. Today marks exactly THREE days since I was in the emergency room waiting room visiting someone dear who'd been admitted for an emergency appendectomy.

I've been sniffling all day and I can't tell if I'm about to get slammed with whatever these people had or my nose is just being weird.

There was NO ONE in the waiting room but us and they were standing RIGHT next to me, coughing and sneezing and generally spraying the plague in my direction. They were all wearing masks, which hospital personnel confirmed, "Anytime someone comes in exhibiting flu symptoms, we make them wear that." (We'll find out soon enough if that works or it's just a big cloth placebo.)

How come, given an entire waiting room that was empty and open, people flocked right over to me? It happened ALL night. Especially the sickest of the sick. They wouldn't even sit, because that would mean they couldn't get close enough to me. NO, they chose to stand right next to me so we were almost touching arms. I got up and moved once and that was awkward, but seriously.

There was an entire inviting cavernous expanse of space full of chairs and sofas with which to writhe to one's heart's content, why throw all that away just to STAND next to the only other person in the waiting room? I don't understand.

If I get sick, I'm going to be pissed. I can't miss work next week, it'd be a terrible time to be out. Two weeks from now I can probably schedule a good flu, but not right now.

Wandering around the hospital, one notices things:

I didn't see anyone using these hand sanitizing stations
but us but at least they were there.
"Nourishment" -- I guess they couldn't quite bring themselves to call it "food":

When the hospital doesn't have a marketing arm:
"What should we call what's behind this door?"
"The kitchen?"
"Well, is what's in here really food?"
"Good point..."
On the hospital menu. I kind of feel like if you need your corn muffin pureed, can't you just wait until you can actually eat it? Is it really that urgent?

Pureed Diet menu.
The first item is one big giant breakfast shake that comes in a bucket.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Slippery ad lingo

How many minutes does it take before location advertising should not say "within minutes"?

"Within minutes to the beach!"

"Within minutes to the metro!"

"Within minutes of the airport!"

When they say "within minutes," I think they mean less than 10 minutes but it seems they mean up to 59 minutes.

That is not within minutes!! It's within an hour!

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Travel planning...

Sheesh, a "bomb cyclone"? Not the best timing for a trip, maybe. "Ooh, let's go right to that little patch of red danger zone in N.J.!"

I can TELL that you didn’t check it.

Me (at car repair shop): "Please look specifically at the windshield fluid tank. I tried to fill it up and it all leaked out so something must be wrong."

Shop: "Yep, we'll be sure to check."

<Later>

Shop: "Your car is ready!"

Me: "Did you check the windshield fluid reservoir?"

Shop: "Yeah, it was fine."

Me: "Are you sure? I dumped a whole bottle of fluid in it yesterday and it all immediately leaked out right at my feet."

Shop: "Yeah, no idea why it would do that. It was fine."

Me: "Can I talk to the mechanic who checked the car?"

Shop: "He's gone. And anyway it's fine. Just come pick it up."

Me: "Can I come tomorrow when he's in?"

Shop: "Um, okay."

Me to hubby (installing inner Jersey Girl): "I know they didn't check it. Why would it suddenly be fixed?? I'm going there with a giant jug of water tomorrow and pouring it into the tank right in front of them! I want to see if it leaks out."

Next day:

Me (holding giant jug of water): Hi, I'm here for my car. Can I talk to the mechanic?

Shop: "Uh, okay... one second..."

5 minutes later: "Huh... funny thing. Turns out that the windshield fluid tank IS cracked after all. So weird!"

I knew it! Do not test the Jersey girl!