Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Metaphors (Mixed Up)

Today, at work, I spent far too much time on the phone with an extremely frustrating salesperson. The kind of salesperson who doesn't listen to you, who assumes they know what you're talking about (they don't), who is impatient (very) and snippy (extremely), and who can't spell your name correctly, even though you repeat the spelling several times (5, to be exact). After the 5th spelling of my name (by me), and the subsequent misspelling (by her), I had to work very hard to suppress the small scream that threatened to escape my lips. When the phone call finally (mercifully) ended, my co-worker (who had overheard the conversation), said:

"Wow, that sounded painful."

To which I replied:

"Yeah. She wasn't the shiniest knife in the drawer."

Then, breathing a huge sigh, I went back to my work. Until the voice of my co-worker broke my concentration:

"Uh, I think it's sharpest knife in the drawer."

"Wait - what?"

"Sharpest knife."

"What did I say?"

"You said shiniest."

"I did?"

"Yeah."

"Shiniest?"

"Yeah."

"Oh."

I guess I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer, either.

(Or the shiniest.)

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

My Pal Jub


My sister's 3-year-old son (with the nickname of Jub) is a very special friend of mine. Many is the hour we have spent together reading stories, singing songs, constructing block towers, and discussing the intricacies of sharks, dinosaurs, airplanes, and Bob the Builder. Unfortunately, he and his mom live several states away, and that distance often makes my heart hurt. To mitigate my heart pain, Jub and I often talk on the phone. He is a skilled conversationalist, and we typically have lengthy conversations covering a variety of topics. Unless, of course, he hasn't been very nice to his little sister that day. On those days, our conversation goes like this:

"Hi Jub! How are you?"

"I'm doing great, Emmie!"

"Are you being nice to your little sister?"

"Buh-BYE Emmie!"

It's always best to end a conversation quickly when an uncomfortable subject is brought up, don't you think?

Lately, my work schedule (combined with the difference in time zones) has prevented me from talking to Jub as often as my heart demands. Because of this, my sister fills me in on her conversations with him during the day, including this recent dinnertime exchange:

Jub: Momma! I want some dinner!

Sis: How do we ask for things?

Jub: Um, Can I have some dinner?

Sis: And . . .

Pause

Jub: Your Majesty?

Last Saturday, my conversation with Jub started in the usual fashion - he said he was doing great, asked if I was in California, and told me that he lives VERY far away. I then asked if he'd like to sing his favorite song ("How Much is that Doggy in the Window" - with the Jub-requested lyric change to "How Much is that Donkey in the Window"). This question is usually met with a positive response, but this time he said:

"No, I don't want to sing it. Can I talk to Uncle Stuvey?"

Steve is also a special friend of Jub's, so even though I was a little disappointed that Jub didn't want to sing about donkeys with me, I willingly handed the phone over to my husband, and listened to his end of the conversation:

Hi, Jub! How are you?

Oh, good. I'm glad to hear you're doing great.

Where's my car? It's out in the parking lot.

Well, I'm not driving it because I'm working right now.

Yes, it's a very fast car.

Yes, it's very fast.

It's a silver car.

Yes, I like my car very much.

Yes, it's a super fast car!

Yes, it goes VERY fast.

What's that? Do I like to wrestle?

The conversation continued in this manner for some time, until:

Do you want to talk to Emmie now?

No?

What's that? Yes, my car is a VERY fast car.

As they continued their car conversation, I suddenly realized something: My little Jub, my sweet little nephew who has always asked me to cuddle on the couch with him and sing him songs about Thumbelina and the Little White Duck, had officially turned into a BOY.

When this realization struck, my heart hurt just a bit. I wondered how much longer I had before he no longer wanted me to sing to him and cuddle him. I wondered if our bond would be as strong when he discovered I'm not very good at wrestling. (Or any kind of sport at all.) But then I took a deep breath, and decided that my heart would be okay. After all, I like boys. (I'm married to one, you know.)

And the next time he asked, I would be prepared. Jub doesn't know it yet, but my car can go VERY fast, too.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Hello Friends,

I've decided to leave the previous post up for a few more days, just in case anyone else wants to share a dating horror story. Look for a new post from me on Wednesday, or thereabouts. In the meantime, and on a completely unrelated note, if you haven't seen this short video, I think you really should.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Making the Best of It

I have a confession to make. Today, when I should have been paying attention to the lesson in Sunday School, I was thinking instead of awkward first dates.

The impetus for my non-religious thoughts came from a brief conversation I'd had with Steve the night before while I was watching part of a reality show that chronicled a first date. I was really rooting for the couple; maybe they would find true love! But, alas, the date did NOT go well. There were long, uncomfortable pauses, jokes that fell flat, jokes that were misunderstood, more long pauses, an attempt to be impressive by speaking in a foreign language, and I was cringing at the painfulness of it all when Steve sat down beside me and asked why I was making faces at the TV.

"It's so painful!" I exclaimed, explaining what I was watching.

Then I rewound the date (I heart TiVo) so Steve could watch it from the beginning. We sat and cringed together until the commercial break, and then Steve said:

"You know, there are plenty of good reasons not to engage in polygamy, but having to go on awkward first dates again is foremost among them."

A good point.

So today I found myself thinking of the awkward first dates in my past. There was the guy whose mom called him on his cell in the middle of the date to ask how it was going. There was the guy who wore so much cologne that I was so completely nauseous by the time we arrived at the restaurant that I couldn't focus on anything he said the entire evening because I was putting all my effort into breathing through my mouth so that I wouldn't keel over from the fumes. And there was the guy who invited me to a party at his place, but all the other people he invited didn't show up (mysterious!), and so he had to "make the best of it" and have a candlelight dinner for just the two of us, followed by repeated offers of a backrub.

And then I started thinking of my blogger friends, and how much I would enjoy it if they shared their awkward dating stories, so that we could all cringe together.

Won't you please share?