Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Whose 'Wich?

Since my last blog post, several important things have happened in my life. First and foremost, our air conditioning got fixed! It took almost 48 hours, but it's worked well since the guy worked out the kinks at our house last Tuesday.

Secondly, I took my board exam on Monday. And it still hurts. The test was 400 questions long and took me about 4.5 hours to finish. I knew some questions, I narrowed some questions down to 2 answer choices, and on some I simply had to choose "C," that old standby answer that comes in handy when you have no idea what the question is even asking.

Third, a frog moved into one of my flower pots. Can you find him?

Fourth, I heard the most hilarious story ever. I think it's even funnier than the time my teacher's pants fell off while he was teaching. Once upon a time...

I have a friend in my class who we call "Sage." His name is spelled something like "Sahegin" or something, but none of us are very good at saying it, so he mercifully allows us to shorten and butcher it down to the more palatable nickname. Sage was studying for his board exam at the library one day when he realized it was getting late. He figured that his study time might run through dinner, so he decided to grab a sandwich from the Subway in our building before it closed, then save it until he got hungry. He put this plan into motion and soon returned to his table at the library with a sub, lovingly wrapped by our local "sandwich artist."

A few minutes later, he noticed that a woman had sat down across from him at the table. He was a little annoyed at this encroachment on his study space, but quickly got more annoyed when the lady reached over and moved Sage's sandwich closer to her. The woman didn't even take her eyes off the journal she had been reading, so Sage figured it must have been some unconscious tidying movement that made the woman move his sandwich.

Suddenly, the next time Sage looked up, he saw that the woman had picked up and unwrapped his sandwich, and just as Sage was saying, "Hey, that's my sandwich," the woman licked it. She licked his sandwich!

After licking the sandwich, she started to wrap it back up and give it to Sage. Sage said (angrily) that she could have the sandwich now, and she asked politely, "Are you sure?"

Sage replied that he was sure (thinking in his head that he was sure he didn't want to get a disease from his saliva-covered sandwich), and then reported the sandwich theft to the nearest campus police officer.

All this begs the question: If you lick something, and the owner is so disgusted that he gives the licked item to you, does it still count as stealing? If not, I'll be licking all of your cars and wallets the next time I see you. Jackpot.

Monday, June 14, 2010

The Heat Is On

It's June 14th in San Antonio. The high today is 95 degrees.

Guess whose air conditioner is broken?


Downstairs the fans are all on and its not too terribly stifling, but the temperature upstairs is approximately 40,000 degrees. (Silver lining: This has cut down on our cover hogging that I wrote about yesterday.) We've reported this air conditioning tragedy to all available emergency response teams, but no sight of the cavalry yet.
While I sweat at home, I'm going through some practice question note cards in preparation for my board exam that is ONE WEEK from today. I've come up with a system to help me study. I read the question on the front, decide on an answer choice, then flip the card over to see whether I chose the right one. Depending on how I chose, I put the note card in one of the three "R" piles: Right, Review, or (w)Rong.

The ones I get right, I'm never looking at again. The ones that go in the review pile are questions that I got right, but want to review before my test. The ones in the (w)rong pile were unfairly written questions. (Ok, I'm kidding--the ones in the wrong pile are ones I missed.)

Well, back to the note cards. Like Robert Frost said, I've got "'piles' to go before I sleep."

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Bed Bugs

When Jeffrey and I first got married, I had a difficult time sleeping. Most of my life I had enjoyed a queen-sized bed all to myself where I could roll over, wallop, and hog the covers to my heart's content. March 8th, 2008--everything changed. Now I had a husband--snoring, walloping, and hogging the covers with as much gusto as I had.
In just a few weeks I got used to my new sleeping buddy and now I can hardly sleep without him. When he went on a trip a few weeks ago, I would stay up until the wee hours of the morning until I simply passed out from exhaustion. This week he's been staying out late with his friends (since this is his last 2 weeks before school starts again) and I've put myself in the bed every night around 11 or 12, but even lying there in the dark with my eyes closed, I can't bring myself to fall asleep until my hubby comes home.

Honestly, though, I don't know why we like sharing a bed. Probably we would have been much more rested if we had separate twin beds (a la Dick van Dyke and his wife), because while we've gotten better at sleeping through the inevitable interruptions, we've not gotten any better at being considerate to the other during our slumber.

Example: Two nights ago, Jeffrey hit me in the face. Right in the nose. He rolled over and smacked me, without even breaking his snore-stride.

Example 2: On most mornings when we wake up, we find that an intense battle over the covers has taken place in the night. Most of the time one person has taken all of the sheet, and the other person has managed to maintain occupancy of the entire comforter. In less fortunate cases, one of us (Jeffrey) has kicked all of the sheet to the foot of the bed, and I have stolen all the comforter. Other days we wake to find ourselves sharing only one corner of the comforter or sheet, because the rest has become hopelessly twisted around someone's leg.

It's really quite exciting what goes on while we sleep. If we could only get MTV to give us a contract and lots of money, we'd set up cameras in there and it would probably be the second-best reality TV show on the air (second, of course, to The Real Housewives of New York).
Anyway, I have some other weird nighttime problems. I have very vivid and strange dreams that I remember forever. Two of my favorites are the time I dreamt that I was camping with several families from church and a bear came into the cabin where we were staying. All the adults immediately threw their children toward the bear and barricaded themselves into the closet. Being outside of the barricade and unwilling to watch the bear eat the kids, I killed the bear with the spoon I had been using to eating cereal. Another time I dreamt that I was carefully unwrapping tarantulas and placing them on a sterile tray for use in the dental clinic. Sometimes I remember them so well that I have to ask Jeffrey months later if they've really happened or if they're just dreams. (Although I was pretty sure that the one with the bear and the tarantulas were just dreams.)

*By the way, please don't try to extract some deep psychological meaning behind my dreams. They're just weird, ok? I don't have mental problems...I don't think.

You know how sometimes when you're almost asleep, your entire body does that weird jump/twitch thing? Well mine does that, except with sound. For instance, I went through a phase a few months ago where every time I started to go into a deep sleep I heard someone's voice say, "Alice!" I don't even know anyone named Alice.

Last night, sometime between my defense of my half of the covers and protecting myself from another mid-REM sleep face slap, I heard the sound of three distinct, insistent knocks on our front door. Not knowing whether these knocks were real or imagined, I sat up in bed and strained to hear what would come next. When I heard nothing else, naturally I figured that the sound had been the noise of a robber/rapist/crazed murderer had just breached our triple locked doors and was now inside our house. I got up to check to see if our bedroom door was locked (that's right, robber/rapist/crazed murderer--you'll have to get past four locks to get us).

When I reached the door, I tested it and saw that it was locked, but almost screamed when I felt two hands grab my arms. It was Jeffrey. He thought I was sleepwalking. We got back in bed, and as usual, Jeffrey fell back to sleep almost instantaneously. I felt my heartbeat slow down to a normal level, then went back to sleep...

...that is, until Jeffrey rolled over and curled his knees up toward his chest, hitting me squarely in the behind.

Sometimes it makes me want to sing, "There were two in the bed and the little one said, "Roll over; Roll over!" So they all rolled over and one fell out."
Honestly, though, I'll take all the hard knocks just to have a cuddle buddy!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Welcome to the Jungle

When Jeffrey and I moved into our new house, the backyard looked like this:

That's right, some of the weeds were as tall as Jeffrey's waist! It took a solid two months of weeding, watering, and care to get the yard looking like it does now. Jeffrey mowed and edged the back and front yard today, and this is what it looks like now:
Yay!!! Victory has been declared over the weeds. (And it's a good thing, too--those weeds were getting so big before that we were starting to worry that they would organize into a rebel weed force that would take over the entire neighborhood beginning with our yard.)

As an added bonus, I found another yard surprise today. I've written before about how I didn't know that the flower bed in the front yard had two rose bushes in it until it started to bloom this spring. I had noticed that one of the many pots the previous tenants had left behind had begun to sprout some leaves that looked like some kind of bulb plant like an iris. I never watered it or moved it--just left it alone to see if it would bloom. Lo and behold, today when I went out to admire my husband's yard work, I saw the the mystery plant had bloomed into two blush-pink calla lilies!

I love flower surprises.

As a follow-up from yesterday's post, I need to let you all know that I did get my review printed by the UPS store (finally) early last night. The manager went to great lengths to get it done, and gave it to me free of charge. I think he might have just given it to me free because he felt sorry for me, though, because when he gave me the 400 page book of science crud he laughed and said, "Better you than me."

I'm on page 70 right now, but I had to stop and smell the roses/calla lilies...

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

System Failure

I've been studying 3 or 4 hours a day for my dental board exam for the last three weeks, but my test is now 12 days away, so it's time to kick the intensity up a notch or two.

I made a review of information from several classes, books, power points, and other resources, and discovered at the end that the amount of pages on my "concise" review numbered close to 400. Gross.

I decided that instead of printing all those pages from my own printer (which would mean buying ink cartridge refills every 3 minutes) I'd have them printed by a store. After a little bit of googling, I found that I could submit my document online to the UPS store and let them print it and bind it, then pick it up the next day (today) around 2 pm.

Today at 1:45 pm I got a call....

Phone: Ring---Ring---Ring
Me: (I'll bet they're calling to say my papers are ready) Hello?
UPS: Hi, Mrs. Edwards? This is Sylvia at the UPS store. I'm calling to let you know that your order will not be ready at 2 today because our system is down.
Me: Ok, well when do you think it will be ready?
UPS: I don't know because the system is down and we don't know when it will be back up. It's been down for the last three days.
Me: You know, I just placed this order last night and there were no warnings or anything that the system was down. The people in charge really shouldn't let you place orders when the system is down.
UPS: Yeah...
Me: So can you transfer my order to a different store? This is kinda time-sensitive...
UPS: No. The system is down, so we can't transfer anything.
Me: Ok, then can you just cancel that order because I need to get that printed by someone else.
UPS: No. The system is down, so I can't cancel anything.
Me: (At this point, I really wanted to sarcastically ask, "Oh, is your system down or something?" but I didn't. Because my mom taught me better than that.) Ok. Who can I talk to? Who can transfer or cancel things?
UPS: I don't know.
Me: You don't have any supervisor numbers?
UPS: No.
Me: Do you have a customer service hotline?
UPS: No. You could look online.
Me: Umm...thanks for your help?

Today I've spent 2 hours talking to different people at the home office, local store, and technical support. I still have no document, no transfer capability, and no way to cancel my order, which has already been charged to my credit card.

Why can't things ever just go the way they're supposed to?!?!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Weight a Minute

I've been working out quite a bit lately, in an attempt to unclog the arteries I filled with cholesterol and laziness during an unusually busy school year. I've attended yoga classes, lifted weights, and tried to run on the treadmill, only to find that I have the stamina of a fat house cat. Little by little, though, I've been building up my strength and the number of minutes I can work out before feeling like I might vomit.

**As an aside, my mom gets up at 4:30 or 5:00 every morning to work out. At this moment in time she can both outrun and outwalk me. But I can totally beat her in Jeopardy. (If the category was "teeth.")

I've worked out a routine at the gym now. I do my workout until I feel like I'm going to throw up, and then I walk a cool down 1/4 mile. After the 1/4 mile walk, I wash my hands with the hand sanitizer (obsessive compulsive, I know) and then I walk back to the locker room to weigh myself.

The locker room in our gym is very nice and almost brand new. It has lockers (of course--otherwise they'd have to call it something else), mirrors, showers, etc... and it even has a sleeping room. The sleeping room is located behind a glass door. Just inside the sleeping room is where the one and only scale can be found. I suspect that the scale was placed in this area for privacy, although the aforementioned glass door perhaps takes away from the security of the place.

Generally, after I finish my workout, I pop into the sleeping room and weigh myself. As I was going to complete this routine last week, I stopped dead in my tracks when I rounded the corner and looked through the glass door and found that a woman, who was very nearly naked, was occupying the scale. She stood, glaring at the number on the scale, wearing nothing but a threadbare pair of underwear and an equally threadbare brassiere.

I can only guess that she had stripped down to her skivvies to bring that number on the scale down lower, but I wish that I could have told her there's a better way to decrease that number. Obviously, she doesn't know "Lauren's Rules of Weighing Yourself."

Lauren's Rules of Weighing Yourself:

Step onto the scale in whatever clothes or shoes you happen to be wearing, then answer the following questions and determine your actual weight.
Are you wearing tennis shoes? If yes, subtract 2 pounds.
Are you wearing a purse? If yes, subtract at least 5 pounds.
Do you have long hair? If yes, subtract 1 pound.
Do you have big boobs? If yes, subtract 1 to 3 pounds (according to size).
If you have on make up, hair gel, and earrings, subtract at least one pound.
If you haven't used the restroom today, subtract 1 pound.
If you just ate, subtract 2 pounds because that food hasn't been digested and divided up by your cells yet, so it doesn't count.
Did you just finish working out? If yes, subtract 2 pounds. It's probably just the sweat in your clothes weighing you down.
Finally, if you're just feeling sad that day, subtract 3 to 5 pounds. The scale is probably wrong anyway. Stupid scale.

Once you go through Lauren's Rules, you realize that you weigh far less with your clothes on than with all of them off. In fact, the last time I weighed myself and used all the rules, I found that my REAL weight is actually 17 pounds. That's hot.