Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Cats 101: We return from our wanderings and Laverne acts all happy but then throws up in the middle of the night

I have told you about our problem with cat vomiting. SH maintains that this is normal, but it is new that Laverne vomits as often as she has been. We tried the tennis balls in the bowl thing. Laverne was too eager to eat to figure out that she could just knock the balls out of the bowl. Shirley, who usually does not get any credit for being that bright, although she does manage to

1. spend most of her life sleeping
2. have someone else take care of getting her food and cleaning her living space
3. get SH to work to get her approval,

is the one who realized that all you have to do is to knock the balls out of the bowl. She wanted the bowl with the balls in it because that looked like fun. Laverne wanted Shirley's bowl because it is no work to get to the food.

So anyway. SH and I returned from being gone for ten days and Laverne was so happy to see us. She was purring and rubbing up next to us and meowing and pretty much being a huge nuisance as we unpacked, but she is our kitty and we love her so we put up with her.

And it was nice that she was happy. There have been times when we have traveled that the cats have punished us for abandoning them. They have ignored us and they do not know us. Nice that we were not facing any drama for being gone so long.

We got everything put away - my uncle's bratwurst, the cinnamon rolls from Coco Bakery in Washburn, the laundry, the kitchen utensils. I had to go to work the next day, so I made my lunch and got my gym clothes together and put my work clothes in the bathroom.

We were tired. I finally got to go to bed. I had to get up in six hours to go to work. I wanted sleep.

But it was not to be. Two hours later, I was awakened by a sound I know oh so well. The sound of a cat preparing to vomit.

(For those of you who do not have cats: there is a pre-vomit sound - the retching. If you hear it soon enough, you can locate the cat and remove her from the very small carpeted or rugged area where she wants to throw up and put her on some kind of cement or wood surface that is easier to clean. It is almost impossible to locate her soon enough usually.)

It was dark.

I was asleep.

I heard the sound.

It woke me up.

I couldn't find the light.

I couldn't find the cat.

Our bedroom consists of 70% wood floor and 30% nice handmade rug that we bought in Morocco.

She threw up on the rug.

I guess she was ticked off after all.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Marriage 701, Lecture 542: Up a creek


SH and I are on vacation.

I am having the perfect afternoon.

Some of you might understand.

I love my husband. I like my husband.

But I like to be alone, too.

We have been together at the cottage for a few days now. It is lovely to eat breakfast together and to play tennis and to take walks and to attend lectures at the Madeline Island museum about how the Native Americans re-purposed the copper kettles and the blue beads that the French brought, but

it is also lovely to be alone.

SH likes boats.

I do not.

I do not find it pleasant to be trapped in a small area surrounded by water.

1. The glare of the sun on the water will almost surely cause a migraine
2. It is work to paddle a kayak and I am ON VACATION
3. It is boring to be in a boat. There. I said it. It is boring to be in a boat. I hate it. Yes, I know I was in Sea Scouts in high school, but that's because my best friend was in Sea Scouts and the guy David on whom I had a massive crush was also in Sea Scouts.
4. I hate being on a boat. I will never ever ever go on a cruise unless it is one of those Danube river cruises where the boat is really just a floating hotel that I get to leave every day.

SH asked if I wanted to go kayaking.

I told him I would if he really wanted to.

But he knew I didn't want to go.

"I will go alone," he said, "and you can spend the afternoon alone."

I love this man.

"I will get the kayak, paddle here, have lunch with you, and paddle back."

Which he did. He got here at about 2:30. "It took about an hour. I have to have the kayak back by 4:30, so I shouldn't leave here any later than 3:30."

"That's not allowing for anything weird to happen," I observed.

"I cannot possibly imagine the wind direction shifting," he said. "That is the only thing that could make it take longer."

"You can't 'possibly imagine?'" I asked. "Isn't that the kind of magical thinking that has gotten you into trouble so many times before?"

He smiled. "I am an optimist."

I shook my head. "You are a person who is always late."

He shrugged. "It's part of my charm."

"No. It's not. It makes punctual people like me absolutely crazy."

"It will be fine. The wind is not going to change."

Three hours later.

Guess what?

The wind shifted direction.

He smiled. "I can't possibly imagine that that might have happened!"

I shake my head again and remind myself that I do not care if he misses his next plane or is late for anything to do with his parents. It is not my problem. And I did get an entire afternoon by myself. I do love that man. If he were perfect, I wouldn't be able to stand him, so I guess this is the flaw that keeps him human.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Marriage 701, Lecture 234: In Lyme disease and in health

SH: OH. NO!

Me: []

SH (walks into bedroom): OH NO!!!!

Me: What?

SH: I just pulled a tick off my leg!

Me: Did you get the legs?

SH: Yes.

Me: OK. [I return to my book.]

SH: But - A TICK!

Me: And?

SH: I COULD GET LYME'S DISEASE!

Me: Well, let's hope for a quick death then - before you have to deal with (a particularly unpleasant task that is looming)

SH: Should I call a doctor?

Let me interject here - the times that SH has actually needed medical attention or medical supplies - the time the surgery wound on his leg was infected and the times he has had the flu or something where even if he does not want to take a decongestant, it would be helpful for me not to have someone sniffing and gasping to breathe next to me all night, he has refused, with stoic principled "I don't NEED a doctor/medicine."

Me: I think you will be fine. I have not heard of an epidemic of Lyme disease in the Apostle Islands.

SH: I could DIE.

Me: My friend's husband was bitten by a tick a few weeks ago and yet he lives.

SH: I could DIE.

Me: Could you wait until we're home so I can have the rest of our vacation and not have to worry about what to do with your corpse up here?

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Marriage 701, Lecture 563: Thieves afoot on Madeline Island, or, Occam's Razor

We are on vacation. We are here. It is wonderful. We are making lunch. My uncle's bratwurst and grilled vegetables.

SH is doing all the cooking. All the cooking and all the dish doing and most of the work.

That is fine with me.

SH: Where's the silicone brush?

Me: I don't know. We brought it with us, right?

[Of course we brought it with us. I keep a spreadsheet of what we need to take on vacation and the silicone brush that we use to put olive oil on vegetables is on the spreadsheet.]

SH: I used it for the zucchini the other day.

Me: So you had it last.

SH: Yes.

Me: And now you can't find it.

SH [as he opens and closes every drawer in the kitchen.]: No!

Me: So you lost it.

SH: Yes.

Me: So you are not doing it right?

SH: Where is it? What happened?

Me: It will turn up.

SH: No! I can't find it! I think someone must have taken it!

Me: Who?

SH: Someone!

Me: You mean someone broke into this cottage just to steal a silicone brush?

SH: It is the only logical explanation!

Me: Or - you lost it and it will turn up.

SH [wearily]: It's gone. Someone took it.

Me: You're crazy.

SH: Oh.

Me: What?

SH: Um. Well. Guess what?

Me: What?

SH: I remember now. I had put it on top of this pitcher so I would be sure to see it and not leave it here and it looks like it fell behind it.

Me: So it wasn't stolen.

SH: I guess not.


Friday, August 14, 2015

Marriage 701, Lecture 653: Not doing it right


I believe this photo goes into the SH lexicon, along with the Song of Something Bad Happened.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Wisconsin 101: Who's cool?


This is such a sincere place. There is not a lot of snark in Wisconsin, which means I am often left feeling like the bitchiest person in the world because I have a normal amount of snark but compared to Wisconsin Nice, I am mean.

Even the hipster affect is done without irony here. There are people who have mullets because - because, I think, they think they look good. Not because they are making an ironic commentary on fashion and style.

Although I have to admit that I could do without hipsters and ironic commentary on fashion and style.

I even had to stop it at work because my boss, who does have a great sense of humor, does not have a snarky bone in his body. When I was commenting that at my old job, at the super-cheap non-profit, they had moved beyond a VPN system and I could get to any of my files on the shared drive from my home computer, as compared to my current job, where I have to have 1. my work computer and 2. a stupid VPN thingy to work at home, that the 80's called and wanted their technology back, my boss looked puzzled and then shook his head.

I got the message.

Snark is not done there.

That's why I have to save it all for blogging.

But occasionally, I do see something that gives me hope that there is an edge to the humor here, like the coolers at Big Head Beer.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Marriage 701, Lecture 234: Going on vacation with an engineer


We are packing to go on our vacation and SH is getting all stressed out because he needs to be in charge and he thinks that I am using the wrong bag for his books - the books are not tidy enough and I have put his magazines in there and WHAT IF THEY WRINKLE? and how come I have mixed my books with his and is that the right bag to put the shoes in (driving, so we do not have to be compact and tidy) and I am wondering just how many years I would get for hitting my husband over the head with a bag of library sale books and if there is a jury of my peers-  women married to fussy engineers - who would even convict me.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Marriage 701, Lecture 123: Packing and planning and It's My Thing


SH: You're probably taking a pair of underwear for each day we're going to be on vacation.

Me: Um. Yes.

SH: I won't be taking a shower every day, so I don't need to take that many.

Me: Whatever.

SH: But maybe if you are going to be washing any laundry in the sink, you could wash some things for me?

Me: You can wash your own laundry.

SH: But you can do it!

Me: So can you.

SH: But you are better!

Me: What? Why do you say something like that?

SH: Because it's your thing.

Me: It's not my thing either. It's nobody's thing.

SH: Yes. It is a thing.

Me: It's not a thing. It's just something you do. It's not that complicated.

SH: But it's - it's a girl thing.

Me: Woah Mr Liberal!

SH: Like sewing buttons - that's something you do. It's not something I do.

Me: Because your mother thought the sun comes out of your butt.

SH: It's not my thing.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Wisconsin 101: We do not lock our doors in some small towns




SH and I are getting ready to go on vacation. Emailing with my aunt about what time we will be at their house.



Aunt A: we will be at mass 4-5:15 p.m. House is open, see you when you get there.

This is the same aunt who let me borrow a car once. When she came home, she asked for the keys. I told her they were on the kitchen counter.

"Why didn't you just leave them in the car?" she asked, slightly annoyed.

I have never lived in a small town before. I didn't know how things worked. 

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Wisconsin 101: How we eat cookies, how we smoke cigarettes

SH: I like [my cousins' bakery] cookies, but I prefer something more decadent.
Me: They are not very rich. They are very good, but they are not rich.
SH: No! I want something really rich, really decadent.
Me: That's not their market. Their market is moms who shop at the farmers market and want to feed something not too bad to their kids
SH: You mean the crunchy granola crowd?
Me: Yes
SH: So the American Spirits crowd - the cigarette that will let liberals feel good about smoking again.
Me: Yes. That is their market.

Monday, July 20, 2015

The working life with engineers: If the shoe fits or matches or something like that

 

You guys, I went through an entire day at work without one single person pointing out that my shoes did not match. For as detail oriented as engineers can be, you would think I would have been the object (the subject? I don't know) of much snickering and finger pointing.

Or maybe I really am invisible now that I am a Woman of a Certain Age.


Friday, July 17, 2015

Marriage 701, Lecture 903: I would say I will buy a new purse but how many purses can one woman use?

Me: I was looking in the drawers in the guest room. Almost all the drawers have your clothes in them. There is only one drawer that has my stuff in it.

SH: Uh huh.

Me [not surprised that the announcement of the huge inbalance of space consumption in this house - the junk in the basement is his, he has an entire office full of junk, and now he is encroaching into the guest room - was not met with consternation but instead with no acknowledgement that it is not fair for one person to hog all the storage space, even if I don't have as much stuff - there is nothing wrong with having space be empty]: I noticed that there are several pairs of brand-new boxers in one of the drawers.

SH: I know.

Me: So don't buy any more! You have enough.

SH: I know. I won't.

Me: Good.

SH: Unless I find something really cool, like with a fish design.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

The Professional Organization of English Majors






You guys, I had to share this with you. It is from my friend at Bookchase.

That is all.