Friday, September 13, 2013

Punch it, Chewy

I drive a very busy thoroughfare to and from work and it makes me very crabby to have to take this road.  There are 6 lanes (3 in each direction) of traffic--with every sort of driver and vehicle known to man.  There are also a cabillion stop lights and maybe a million or so potholes--even in summer.

It is a congested drive--it is a main north/south route in Chicago.

It is a crazy driv--everyone has their own way of driving....or not.

It is a stressful drive--dodging slow drivers, fast drivers, drivers whose cars are falling apart, and drivers who are making up their own rules of the road as they go along. And, oh yeah, I think I want to pull out and cross 6 lanes of traffic to get to that McDonald's over there.......

ugh.

On my way home yesterday, I noticed cars swerving from the right lane into the center lane.  I slowed up and prepared for....I dunno.....anything. (You never know what you are gonna see on Cicero Ave.)

Yep. There it was....

A 12 or 13-year old black kid, driving his mini-bike in the right-hand lane.  NOT a motorcycle...a mini-bike. As in...it's not street legal.  And neither was he.

While that was crazy enough,  homeboy didn't know and didn't care what the rules of the road are, so when the light turned red, he'd zip up on the sidewalk and continue on his merry way.

You see it all on Cicero Avenue. Seriously....you see it ALL.


And you thought the cow was silly.




Thursday, September 12, 2013

Still Alive

My not-a-cat-blog has a cat update---go figure.
Grace is now eating 3 cans of cat food a day.

Seriously.

I think she has a tape worm. 
But it's a good tape worm apparently--she looks and acts fabulously healthy.


On another note--no worries about the Duck and Wheel--
we aren't going anywhere.  I'm just trying to figure out
what the hell I'm gonna write about going forward.

This is not a good start. 




Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Identity Crisis

Stumped as to why the stories sort of stalled here on the blog recently, I've been doing a lot of thinking about where I'm going.  It's not time to wrap up the Duck and Wheel yet, but the kids are off doing their own thing, the cats are boring as hell, as are the fish and the frogs....hmmmmm....

Let's see....

I'm not a Mommy Blogger or a Cat Blogger.  I'm not a humorist or a "pitcher"--a blog that reviews and posts giveways.....

I don't know what I am these days!  So, while I figure it out, I shall just post random stuff and hopefully it will be a good read....or not.


So, as I sat here, losing 9 out of 10 Words With Friends games, I was thinking of just that--where do we go with the blog and what will be the new niche?

Just as I played another lame-ass word on WWF to humor my opponent, Grace came over on the desk to get some attention.  As she stood in front of the computer screen, she decided, just then and there, that her left ear itched.  It itched bad.  Like she had her entire hind foot in her ear and she was making all these weird faces and nearly fell off the desk as she scratched that itch. Oh my.

To avoid the cat falling off the desk and killing herself, I helped her out a bit.  I stuck my finger in her ear and swirled it around a bit to help the old gal out. (That's what you do when you are a mom--you do icky stuff like that for those you love)

The ear was miraculously not itchy anymore.  Her face went back to normal and she could relax again. Whew!

Me?  I was left with a finger full of cat ear wax that was grossing me out.  Welcome to my new life.

Is this my new identity, I wondered?  Am I now officially the cat ear-scratcher?  Sigh. Better stock up on Kleenex on the desk.



Stay tuned for other very exciting stories from my new life.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Calling Maury Povich.....

My favorite part of being in HR at work is the benefit open enrollment periods.

Not really.

It's a nightmare, in actuality.  Getting people to fill out a form for a benefit is apparently very difficult and a lot to ask of someone. Getting them to fill it out accurately is like asking for their first born be handed over.  Sigh.

This week is one of the 4 times a year that I have to process said forms.  And while those tough questions like "What is your address?" and "What is your social security number?" completely stumps folks, the beneficiary page is always good for an extra challenge--and a laugh.

A quick lesson in beneficiaries:

1.  Your primary beneficiary must be your spouse at 100% unless you have your spouse complete the form that says it's okay not too.  That must be signed by the spouse and then notarized.
2.  You have to know if you are married or single.

And that's the part that stumps them. That's the $100,000 question--"Married or Single?"

I get all sorts of answers for that one:

1. Spouse out of the country?  You are still married, unless you got a divorce.
2. You don't like your spouse?  You are still married, unless you got a divorce.
3.  You have a girlfriend?  You are still married.....
4.  You have a spouse m.i.a., but now you are in a same-sex relationship and you consider yourself married to them even though you haven't divorced the original opposite-sex spouse?  You are married....to the FIRST spouse that you never divorced.
5.  Even if you ignore the two boxes that read "married" or "single" and make up your own category like "separated"....you are still married, unless your divorce is final.

Criminy. I need Maury Povich on speed dial for open enrollment periods.  It seems folks cannot figure out if they are married or not.  Isn't it like being pregnant?  You either are or you are not.  And why don't you know the status? 


In the end, you can lie through your teeth and I would never know the difference. But I wouldn't want to be around when they execute the disbursement.  I imagine there are lots of surprises at funeral parlors and lawyers offices all over this country.





Friday, September 6, 2013

What's better than Hump Day?

Friday.

What are you doing this weekend?

We are attending the first Band Parent Bonfire NOT held at our house.  Joe 
is thrilled about that.  Me....not so much.  I miss hosting it at our house.

sigh.  More changes.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Sometimes I sits and thinks....

And sometimes, I just sits.




It's weird now that both kids are gone....it's quiet, but busy.  I'm not sure what we are doing, but it seems Joe and I are running every night.

Oh, it's nice enough having company for errands---maybe that is why we are busy--we aren't tag-teaming it anymore.  After dinner, we both pop in the car for a ride to do whatever we need to do...together.  I can't imagine how this empty-nest thing would be if you didn't like your spouse.  Or if you found out that you don't want to be alone together after raising kids.  I count myself lucky on that front--I've got somebody to do stuff with now.  We are (gasp!) enjoying this empty nest thing!

I think the only ones having a hard time with this change is the cats.  Apparently Joe and I are very  boring.  Both cats start pacing in the evening, looking around and meowing for some attention.  I think they miss the kids a lot...especially Hobbes--he is a snuggle whore.  I guess I didn't realize how much smooching was going on between he and Em....now he's sorta lost.    Now he looks to me to sit and shed on.

So, we are adjusting, I guess.  I sorta like that the house is clean all week and that the grocery bill is much less.  Even eating out is incredibly cheap.

I think the cats will adjust with time.