Wednesday, July 27, 2011

I guess I could start digging right now...

July 27, 2011

For those of you keeping score at home, July 27, 2011 is the 20th anniversary of the Beth and Steve nuptials.  We also got married that day.  Har dee har.  20 years together.  While no one said out loud that they did not think it would last, I gotta believe that many people out there thought Beth would someday come to her senses.  I am happy to report that Beth has not yet become sensicle.

What big plans do we have for our anniversary?  Not much really.  I have to work and Wednesdays at work sometimes turn into 11 hour days.  CJ has band camp until 9pm, so he is out of the picture should we choose to renew our vows.  Our church is having their monthly last Wednesday service, and I know Beth would like to go, so that may be our big outing.

Whenever I mention to people that is my wedding anniversary, they always want to know what gift I am giving Beth.  It is usually women asking, so the expectation is high that it be something like jewelry, perfume, or a pony.  I usually disappoint since I choose not to lie.  Being truthful does not mean I say her gift is being married to me, but it also means that I do not easily get away with the "nothing special" response.

Therefore, I have looked up some online help for what the best gift to give Beth for the best 20 years of my life.  Here are the suggestions:

Traditional gift, China.  That is a long drive and I have to work on Thursday, so China is out.

Modern gift, Platinum.  The atomic number of Platinum is 78 and the music in 1978 was not good for me.  Night Fever by the Bee Gees was the number one single of the year and I am still trying to get over being sick.  Plus, Olivia Newton John-my first celebrity crush-sang with John Travolta and I cannot revisit that disappointing time in my life.

Gemstone, Emerald.  I like his cooking, but the whole "Bam!" thing is annoying.

As I look at some of the suggestions on how to throw a 20th anniversary party, I wonder if Beth would have rather had a husband prone to more romance and/or surprises.  I think I know her well enough by now that I would guess not, but I am not taking any chances if I am wrong. 

Therefore, do not tell Beth, but here are my big plans for tomorrow:

First, I will leave work early since I rarely ever do that for her.

Second, I will pick up some Chinese food.

Third, I will download Three Times a Lady by the Commodores and Kiss You All Over by Exile onto my IPod so we can each have an ear bud to listen to while we eat.  That should really set the mood, no?

Finally, I will rent the top movie of 1991 (the year we got married for all of you who did not follow the math), The Silence of the Lambs.  Perfect date movie.  Also the punch line to one of the better You May be a Redneck jokes. 

I guess it is a better movie choice than the first movie Beth and I went to see together on a date, Fatal Attraction.

So Beth will be sufficiently wooed you think?  I think so too.  I know you are all way jealous right now, but I assure you I am all Beth's.  Not available am I.  (You saw what happened to the rabbit, right?)

So tomorrow should be the culmination of 20 awesome years together.  I love Beth today even more than I did back then.  She is beautiful, funny, smart, and a great mom.  She is my best friend and the best wife a man could ask for.  I will forever be grateful for the grace God has shown by helping a schmuck like me land such an incredible woman. 

Plus, she is outside cutting the grass right now since I have typed this Tuesday night, so how can anyone argue that I have married well.  I think Beth will be getting the extra egg roll tomorrow.  I know, right!  Lucky woman.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Not in the face!

July 24, 2011

Being the scientific intellectuals that we are, Beth and I conducted an experiment of sorts this week.  First, on Friday we went to the new movie, Friends with Benefits.  Then, on Saturday, we rented No Strings Attached.  I know, we are just like Pavlov and his dogs with the case studies we have going on over here.

There has been a lot of humorous compare and contrast videos wandering the Internet as the two movies seem to have very similar plots.  In the trailers, at least.  However, what Beth and I can share with you is that the two movies bear very little similarities either in their story lines or in their quality.

NSA was one of the five worst movies I have ever seen all the way to the end.  FWB is one of the five best romantic comedies I have ever seen.  Beth and I compared our waste of viewing time for NSA to experiences we have had viewing Waterworld and Barton Fink.  Between the three movies, we have lost seven hours of our lives that we will never get back. 

Yes, I know that Barton Fink was critically acclaimed, but keep in mind that movie reviews are subjective.  Also keep in mind that I am neither Siskel nor Ebert, so my opinion should not be your sole criteria for viewing any of the above mentioned movies.

Had I been given a choice between seeing either NSA or FWB based on the trailers, I would have gone with NSA and assumed both movies would be cheesy.  My basis for choosing NSA would have been Natalie Portman.  She was adorable in Garden State.   Mila Kunis was cute in Forgetting Sarah Marshall, but I was not convinced she could beat out Natalie Portman.  I have never been a big fan of Ashton Kutcher or his punks.  While Justin Timberlake has been funny on SNL, I did not think he could carry a whole movie.

I figured going to see a Justin Timberlake movie would be like how one of CJ's friends described the game Wall Ball they played at school.  I have never played it or seen it played, but I gather you get to throw a ball at other people or at a wall.  Or you throw a ball at the wall trying to then make it hit somebody.  Not sure.  However, apparently, if you get hit in the face, you then get to be the one throwing the ball at somebody else.  Jack described the moment as the ball was bouncing off the wall as a mixed emotional bag.  He would be hoping to get hit in the face so he could then be the one throwing the ball, but he had to GET HIT IN THE FACE!  I understand the dilemma.

That is what I thought as we decided to go see FWB.  I am going to hopefully see a funny movie, but I have to watch Justin Timberlake acting to do so.  My apologies to Justin Timberlake and his acting coach.

Then comes the writing.  The exchanges between the two characters in FWB were priceless.  You really have to pay attention as some of the barbs come at you rather quickly, but I really enjoyed the witty repartee.  Throw in some memorable scenes like JT performing the Kriss Kross, classic, Jump, and be prepared to laugh yourself silly.  Even the supporting characters play key roles in the funny.

I will not play spoiler to any more of the movie, but I will tell you that I would recommend it.

Please feel free to share your opinions if you have seen any of the above mentioned movies.  Unless your opinion involves throwing a ball at my face.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Be careful what you wish for

July 19, 2011

It is day two of my 7 day vacation away from The Target, and I have the house to myself all of a sudden.  CJ is at band camp learning how to march, and Beth is at Target.  If it was just a grocery trip, I would go with Beth; however, I do not want to see Target for a week.

Yesterday was spent at the allergist's office.  I have had allergies my whole life but never had a specific diagnosis.  It has also never been a huge problem for me until the past couple years.  I do not get rashes and my throat does not close up, but I have been getting allergic reactions that conquer my sinus passages and rapidly develop into infections or bronchitis.  It was time to see if I could prevent the allergy part and hold off on the infections.

So yesterday, as I sat in the doctor's office, it delta dawned on me that I felt great.  This always happens to me.  I tear a meniscus in my knee such that I can barely walk, but when I am sitting in the doctor's office, it feels great.  If I lived in a medical building, I would never be sick.

Thus, the doctor is having me fill out papers and asking me probing questions like:

Reactions to pet dander? 
Reactions to food such as bananas or nuts?
Any diarrhea or vomiting?

Darn it, no.  A guy at work had his whole face swell up when he ate banana.  Why not me?  Why can I not have explosive rectal evacutations?

It is weird, I do not really want to be sick, much less dying, but I do want to justify the need to go to the doctor.  I am eating up my HSA account by telling you that I sneeze when I cut the grass. 

Okay, questions are done, here come the pricks.  Settle down.  They prick your arm 46 times with different potential allergens, then you wait 15 minutes to see if the prick turns into a red bump.  Man, I wanted to look like a leper, but instead I looked like an intravenous drug user with piss poor aim.  This test showed I had mild allergic reactions to Bermuda grasses, type 5A grasses, and Epicoccum mold.

Type 5 grasses include KY Bluegrass, Orchard, Redtop, Timothy, and Sweet Vernal.  The previous owner of this house told me he did not know how to start a lawn when it was built, so he put down 4 kinds of grass seed.  I'm guessing some of the above were included since I hear hillbillies with fiddles sometimes and I have an Aunt Verna.

These grasses are most pungent in the spring, and that is when I had the most issues.

As for the mold, I think it is the kind that holds Jello.  We used to have one in the kitchen cabinet, but I threw it out yesterday.  One problem solved.

I had to ask the doctor though about oranges and their juice.  When I was a teen ager, I drank some orange juice, sneezed about 12 times, and then had a cold for three days.  I attributed it to the orange juice.  Logical, I thought.  I have never had any since.  I used to even look at the ingredients of Mountain Dew and see "orange juice" on there and wonder if it was affecting me somehow.  (I used to drink several Mt Dews per diem).  Last year, Beth peeled an orange in the same room with me, I caught some of the vapors up my nostrils, sneezed 12 times and had a cold for the next three days.

The allergy test for oranges was negative.  ???  Coincidence?  I guess, but I am not rushing out to have lunch with  Anita Bryant anytime soon.  Gosh, what an old reference.  I really need some new material.  Who promotes oranges now?  I will look it up.  I just sneezed when I typed "Anita Bryant". 

WOW!!!  I googled orange juice commercials and was instantly distracted by "lesbian orange juice commercial".  It turned out to be an actual commercial for orange juice, and I do really want some right now, but I could not tell you any new info on who promotes oranges or their juice.  I am fairly certain Anita Bryant was not in the commercial.  Wow.

What I have learned about my allergies though, is that when you combine a mild allergy with stress and fatigue, you get sick.  Thus the infections and bronchitus. 

I have also learned that if you swing and axe at an orange tree, juice will come out.  At least I think that is the message, I should go do some more research.  Hi Beth.  :o

I may soon be at the doctor's office with a real case of the head injuries.  Got my wish!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Summer, why do we love thee?

July 16, 2011

Why a tribute to Elke Summer, you may be wondering? Who the heck is Elke Summer (Sommer)? Not really sure. She was a model/actress back in the 60's. No, this post is not about her.

What about Summer Sanders? The Olympic gold medal winning swimmer from 1992? No.

This is a photo montage of our summer. I promised my sister some photos and I have some from the highlights of our recent activities, so let the fun begin:

We found toe prints on the shelf of our microwave stand in the kitchen.  Did a raccoon get in?  Should we call a critter ridder?  Uh, no.

Julia was here!  There must have been something of value to her on the top shelf.  I wonder if she got it?

These are the young ladies (and their mom) for whom I chaperoned Beth to Indianapolis.  I hope mom does not read my blog.  If so, fierce shoes, Grandma.  The beautiful young lady in white will be wedding a nice young man in September.  She is now clean.  It is hard to tell as I could not find any really awesome photos of her from the shower.  Also pictured, her sisters.  Together, they are my favorite nieces-in-law from Indiana.

Beth befriended the host's daughter, Julia.  I know!  They are like twins, the Julias.  This Julia had just said to Beth, "Here comes him with the camera again."  Actually, I was not at their house for the shower as I am a man and no men allowed.  I had gone to a movie and then made a friend in the host's basement.

Plymouth.  We are now buds.  Part of the He Man Women Haters Club, banished to the basement.  Obviously, Plymouth is in the back yard for this photo.   I was lucky to not be banished outside as well.  I had to snap the photos, Plymouth has no thumbs.

No, we are not the proud owners of a new hamster.  We are currently pet-sitting a friend's hamster, Fifi.  Beth has proven once again that we cannot be pet owners as she has taken to this cute little thing.  She has fed it gourmet carrots and cherries and nursed it back to health every time it flings itself around its wheel from running too fast.  I think it was the sugar buzz from the cherries.  (No Rowen, Fifi was never actually harmed, as far as you know.)

What has CJ been doing?  Soon, this cocoon will become a beautiful butter-boy.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Ba dum bum

July 9, 2011

We have new manager at work, who I will call Bethany.  She is destined to be a good addition.  Target thinks so because she is energetic and has a good head on her shoulders.  However, that is not why I think so.

The other day we were discussing the day's sales and she told me things were picking up because she just saw a man go through the checkouts with a cart full of kitty litter.  I said that was so weird since earlier I saw a cat go through the checkouts with a bunch of toilet paper.  She laughed very hard, thus allowing me to assess her as a good manager.  Priorities people.

So as July goes, it has been an interesting month.  CJ has marched in the holiday parade with his tenors and learned that after carrying them for 6 hours, they get heavy.  Someone had to lift them off of him at the end of the parade.  No, the parade was not 6 hours.  They did not march from here to Dayton.  There was practicing and rehearsals and practicing and marching.  And it is July.  A little warm.  I Heard him for all of 20 seconds and he sounded great.

Tomorrow, we drive to Indianapolis for our niece's wedding shower.  I will be chauffeuring Beth and her mother for this excursion.  Men are not allowed at the shower.  Is this a blessing?  Or does something go on at these things I need to know about?  What this does mean is that I will be driving and then finding something to do in Indy for a couple hours.  Hmmm.  Wings and beer probably a bad idea.

Shower tomorrow means clothes buying today for Beth.  She does not have a closet full of clothes ripe for any occasion.  Girl never buys clothes, and then wears the ones she has until they are no longer nice enough to be seen at a shower.  Something about that sentence looks weird.  Anyway, Beth is out in the world shopping for clothes, which is an activity she enjoys as much as she likes plucking her eyebrows.  AND, she is PMSing right now.  If you see a news break later about a department store clerk who was "allegedly" bitch-slapped, please recommend a good defense attorney.

I now have the house to myself as CJ just left to go to play rehearsal.  He is part of the tech crew-in charge of the light board.  High school plays are not especially tech tricky, so it sounds like a long 5 hours.  It is 5 hours away from the game system, so that is good.  His girlfriend is in the play, so maybe he will actually say hi to her.  Smooth like his old man, this kid is.

So me and my new chaise lounge have an appointment.  I always feel bad about stealing away from Beth and CJ to tap into the IPod and lounge for awhile, so today seems like the right time.  Plus, I bought one of those clip on bug repellents, so I will be livin it up, livin it up, oh yeah.  Aaaah.

Wait, did someone just fire up their circular saw?  Good grief!