Blog Archives

Exactly How Many Calories are There in Styrofoam?

Our bulldog, Wonderbutt, seems a bit put out lately – possibly because we have been restricting his food intake the last couple of weeks.  Note that I said, “food intake”.  If you know anything about the history of Wonderbutt, you won’t be surprised to learn that his intake of everything but food has not decreased at all.  You can see from the widget on the left that he has miraculously made it almost a year without devouring our new living room furniture – but I’m not sure his self-control will last much longer.

It’s hard to explain to a dog why you are feeding him less, and that binging on beds with no nutritional value is not a healthy habit.

Wonderbutt's bed, yet another one of our wise investments

Wonderbutt’s bed, yet another one of our wise investments

Screen Shot 2013-04-25 at 6.43.40 PM

Like I said, it's hard to explain.

Like I said, it’s hard to explain.

Advertisements

Mrs. Cap’n Firepants Trades Nothing for Something and Ends Up Playing for the Philadelphia Phillies

So, first of all, I am totally psyched that The Daily Show returns tonight.  My daughter wants to become a teacher because she gets summers off.  I said, “No, you need to be Jon Stewart because he gets two weeks off for every holiday, plus the entire summer – in both hemispheres.”  Not that I’m bitter or anything.  Just suffering from separation anxiety.

“Who’s Jon Stewart?” my daughter asked.

Yeesh.

In other news, my anti-depressants seem to be somewhat working, which means my That-Idea-is-Stupid-Filter is working again.  Which means it’s very difficult to think of blog topics.  The only reason I am typing anything now is because I forgot to take my lunchtime dose, so my filter is being stomped down by the amazingly strong irritation that I begin to feel when things start wearing off.

I always thought people were idiots for refusing to take their medication because they lost their creativity, and now I’m beginning to understand it a bit.  I mean, it’s nice to go 12 hours without feeling an overwhelming desire to slit my wrists, but it does seem like I generate a whole lot more writing ideas when I’m miserable.

I don’t see why there has to be a trade-off.  I mean, there is such a thing as getting something for nothing, despite what your mother may have told you.  I just heard about Mike Cisco being traded to the Los Angeles Angels for no compensation.  Nada.  (That means “nothing”, right?  I mean, I’ve never really checked, but I’m just guessing from the context clues.  If it means something else, and it happens to be offensive, I completely apologize.)

So, anyway, the Angels got Cisco for nothing.  I don’t see why I can’t get my sanity for nothing.  My sanity certainly doesn’t effect as many people as a baseball player, who I admit I never heard of, but whose trade qualifies him for the Yahoo sports page.  You’re not going to see my trade on any sports page, so I’m pretty sure that means that I am worth less than Cisco.  Ergo, I should get my sanity for less than nothing.

Reading that over, it seems like there might be some fault in that logic, but I can’t really be bothered with such trifling trivialities.  It’s almost time for The Daily Show and my bulldog is demanding my presence on our armchair.  And if Jon Stewart talks about the Cisco trade, I want all of you to be my witness that I brought it up first.  That’s what he gets for going on a two week vacation.

The problem is, I don't have a trading card.  I need to work on that.photo from:  http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/

The problem is, I don’t have a trading card. I need to work on that.
photo from: http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/

Guns May Not Kill People, but Scissors and Sidewalks are Out of Control

keep-your-dignity-and-stay-alive

I pretty much have the same two main goals every day: don’t embarrass myself, and try to keep breathing.

You might think that, since I’m not suffering from a fatal illness (that I know of – but I still have thousands of internet diagnoses to comb through), that the latter one would not be that hard.

But I have three strikes against me – my depression, my forgetfulness,  and my clumsiness.

I usually get up every morning, and my first thought is, “On a scale of 1-10, how much do I NOT want to be alive today?”  If it’s over a 5 for more than a couple of days, I call the doctor.  Usually, though,it hovers around a 3, in which case I resolve to make a concentrated effort for the next 24 hours not to kill myself.  On “Three” Days, it’s easy to avoid killing myself on purpose,  but an accidental death is always a distinct possibility.

Last week, for example, I was walking out the back door of our school one morning, on my way to my portable classroom.  For absolutely no reason at all, other than a little mist in the air, I suddenly skied down the handicap ramp, did about a 5 minute dance that included a twirl and the splits, and fell.  (It was truly a John- Travolta-Stayin’ Alive-Performance.) Hard.  On my knee.

All in all, the experience was somewhat of a success.  As you can tell, I did not kill myself.  I didn’t even break any bones or, more importantly, the iPad that was in my purse.  In addition, it was so early in the morning that only one person witnessed this amazing feat – and she was a substitute.  (Notice that I am not including the school security cameras as a witness because I am holding out the hope that people have better things to do than to watch them every minute.)

For the next 4 days, I wore pants so my husband would not see my gravel-encrusted knee.  He already knows I’m a klutz, but I keep thinking if he goes more than a couple of months without being directly reminded of this, he might replace my “Klutz” label with that of “Stunningly Efficient Wife.”

No matter.  On the 4th day following my stunning performance, my husband was holding our golden retriever while I was kneeling (on my traitorous left knee) behind her, trying not to cry out in pain.  My intention was to cut off a particularly nasty mat of hair conveniently located on her rear end.  As I pushed the tip of the scissors through the mat, trying to find the other side so I would not slice off her skin, I managed to plunge the blade deep into one of my fingers.

Bloody, but not exactly deadly.  Yay me.  I missed stabbing myself in the jugular.

Since I’d already reverted to the “O Days Without an Incident” billboard in my husband’s eyes, I went ahead and confessed to my knee injury while I was at it.

It’s going to be pretty ironic if I conquer this whole depression thing, and I end up killing myself anyway…

Just Give it To Me Straight; Will This Effect My GPA (Grand Plan to Age in relatively good health)?

Medical tests confuse me.  Not the try-to-get-into-medical-school-so-you-can-spend-the-next-decade-of-your-life-not-sleeping kind of medical tests.  And not even the “Better 1… or Better 2?” kind of optometry tests (though those kind of confuse me, too; I always suspect that I am being tricked and neither one is better, they are both exactly the same.  Coincidentally, my contact prescriptions seem less accurate every year, and I go twelve months seeing things in a blur because I am afraid to admit to my optometrist that I lied when I said #2 was better in the hopes of making the test end more quickly.) No, I am talking about the extract-some-bodily-fluids-to-send-to-a-lab kind of tests.  When you think about it, it’s my poor bodily fluids that are actually being subjected to these pop quizzes for which they never had the opportunity to study.  So, I guess it’s not the tests that confuse me – just the results.

“Mrs. Cap’n Firepants? I’m just calling to tell you that your test results were negative.”

“Oh my God!!!!!  So, I do have cancer?”

“Umm, we weren’t testing you for cancer. Just for kujdjidlkjkdjf.”

“Oh my God!  So, I have that? …Uh, what is that?”

“No, I am trying to tell you that you do NOT have it.”

“But you said the results were negative.”

“That means you don’t have it.”

“But shouldn’t that be a positive thing, that I don’t have whatever it is? Are you one of those glass-half-empty-people?  Because maybe you shouldn’t have this job if you are going to be spreading your gloomy outlook on life to perfect strangers.”

“This has nothing to do with my optimism or pessimism, Mrs. Cap’n Firepants.  It’s medical terminology.  When what you are trying to find in the test is not present, then you say it is negative.”

“So, are you saying that you wanted to find this in my blood?!!”

“I need to make some more calls, Mrs. Cap’n Firepants.”

“Wait!  Are you positive the test was negative?”

“I’m hanging up now.”

I breathe a sigh of relief that I apparently do not have kujdjidlkjkdjf.   And then I remember that I was kind of hoping that I do have it because it isn’t fatal, can be fixed by taking a pill a day, and would explain why I am such a terrible person.

So, now I am positive that I am feeling negative.

This may explain why my gynecologist’s office just leaves an automated message about my Pap Smear every year.

My bodily fluids would have totally rocked this test.  photo credit: dullhunk via photopin cc

My bodily fluids would have totally rocked this test.
photo credit: dullhunk via photopin cc

Happy Valentine’s Day, You Wrinkled, Pimply Old Lady. Eat Some Glue.

So, you probably thought my most recent post was the last time you would have to hear about fortune cookies.  And now that you’ve read the first sentence of this post, you are rightly assuming that you were wrong.  I know, being right about being wrong is not very encouraging.

I got another fortune cookie today.

Here in the States, we are celebrating another Hallmark Holiday – Valentine’s Day.  When I arrived at school this morning, I checked my mailbox in the faculty lounge, and found a cute little gift box filled with candy.  And a fortune cookie.

As soon as I got to my classroom, I quickly tore open the cookie, eagerly anticipating the antidote to the threatening golf fortune I got from Goldfinger last week.

This is what it said:

photo-3 copy

“Well, that’s great!” I thought.  “Some day, I’m going to be a partner in a law firm!” (This clearly proves what an optimist I am, as a pessimist – or a realist, since I’m 44 years old, and have never gone to law school – might think, “Some day, I am going to be framed for killing someone who writes provocatively puzzling fortune cookie prognostications, and I will need to hire a law firm.)

But then I found the business card in the box.

photo-1 copy

So, basically, even if I Live to Die Another Day, I’m pretty sure I’m being told that I will need to get my face dermabraised so I will be fit to be seen in public.   (At least I don’t have diamonds embedded in my face like Zao.)

Forget gun control.  I want fortune cookie control.  You wielders of fortunes have turned the perfectly harmless sport of hunting for the secret to my future into an automated industry churning out emotionally charged weapons disguised as fortune cookies.

But I’m not entirely ungrateful.  Ever the optimist, I found, along with my fortune cookies, some extremely delectable pieces of chocolate.  And a very tasty looking packet of Micro Dermabrasion Paste.

Yum, yum.

Yum, yum.

It’s Like They Know Me…

DSC_0062

Yoga Mat Instructions – Note the Underlined Section

Can I Make My Hair Stylist My Primary Physician? If So, Will Coloring My Hair Double My Co-Pay?

“Have you had your thyroid checked lately?”

“No, why?”

“Well, you just seem to be losing more hair than usual.”

This slightly disturbing dialogue occurred between my hair stylist’s sister and me as she was washing my hair.  I don’t think she realized that she was pouring gasoline on a hypochondriac’s fire.

It didn’t help when my hair stylist, himself, said, “Oh yes, we had a client who had thyroid problems.  But instead of losing her hair, she lost her eyebrows.”

I think you can predict what I did when I went home.

It says a lot about my husband’s understanding of me when he said nothing after walking in on me in the bathroom with my nose pressed to the mirror, trying to look for evidence of any missing eyebrow hair.

The truth is, I have been thinking of getting my thyroid checked.  It was checked 3 years ago, but my sister, Crash, had already planted the idea in my head a couple of weeks ago that I should make another go at it, and I am a firm believer that one medical test is never enough.  Especially when it comes out negative.  I’m not paranoid (much), but it seems to me that there are a lot things that can go wrong between the draining of my blood in one office building and the examination of it in some anonymous warehouse under a microscope.  Just check out the “Non-Fat Yogurt” episode of Seinfeld, and you’ll be paranoid, moderately suspicious too.

What I’m trying to figure out, though, is how I can get my doctor to just order the tests without me having to go in and explain my rationale for needing them.  Because I already paid my hair stylist $150.  I don’t see why I need to add a $20 co-pay to the mix.

“Hello?  Yes, I wanted to see if Dr. Jimmy can order some thyroid tests for me?  No, I don’t need to meet with him first.  My hair stylist’s sister already diagnosed me.  Plus, I did the internet checklist.  Really, the blood tests are just a formality.  If Dr. Jimmy wants, we can skip those, too, and he can just start giving me the drugs.”

Yes, I’m sure that would work.

Hey, barbers used to be surgeons.  It's not that far-fetched...photo credit: rhinman via photopin cc

Hey, barbers used to be surgeons. It’s not that far-fetched…
photo credit: rhinman via photopin cc

People Who Eat Food From a Farmers Market Are Ignorant

Don’t hate on me yet.  I know the title looks bad, but bear with me.

So, I was eating lunch today, and eavesdropping on conversations, like I usually do.  One of the women began to proselytize about how much better it is to eat fresh food than something from a supermarket.    Her rationale was that, with supermarket food, “you don’t know where it’s been.”

And I thought, “Well, you kind of know more about where it’s been than you do with food from a farmers market.  I mean, you pretty much have just the word of the farmer that he hasn’t painted arsenic on it or anything.  I’m not saying you should buy all of your food from a grocery store, but if your main reason for buying your zucchini from someone on the side of the road is that you think you can count on the goodness of people’s hearts not to poison your purchase by growing it in something other than pristine conditions, then you might want to rethink that. ”

But I didn’t say it.  That is what this blog is for – whatimeant2say, but didn’t.  This way, I don’t get fired from my job or shot at (this is Texas, after all).

A few minutes later, the same woman launched into a diatribe about anti-depressants.

“Well, I just don’t believe in them,” she said.  “I think people just use them so they don’t have to deal with whatever is making them depressed.  I mean, look at me, [insert details about her life that were very traumatic] and I didn’t take anti-depressants.  Get over it.”

Oh boy.

Wow.  I can’t even type whatimeant2say because so many sentences crawled into my brain at the same time I think I almost blacked out.

Here is the long and short of it:

Not everyone who is depressed needs to take anti-depressants.  But some people do.  Like me.

Not every farmer’s market sells food that kills people.  But sometimes they do.  Like this one.

And not every person who eats food from a farmers market is ignorant.  But some are.  Like you. *

*(Not you, the person reading this; you, the person who likes to make sweeping generalizations on topics about which she is not an expert.  I know you are not that person.  So, don’t hate on me.)

Of course, I’m the person who thinks terrorists are poisoning our food.  But just some terrorists.  And some food.  Some people, namely the author of this blog, like to be judicious when they jump to conclusions.

You (sweeping generalization person) should try it some time.

Let’s Try This Again

I am very disappointed in you guys. And, you should not interpret this as any kind of projection of the disappointment in myself that I might be feeling due to the fact that my computer crashed this weekend and I hadn’t backed it up yet.

I just took a gander at my 2012 resolutions for all of you, and you have sadly fallen short on your goals.

The fact that, according to my trusty Googleometer, Toddlers and Tiaras just started a new season shows a blatant defiance of at least three of the resolutions I laid out for you guys. Since I have not read about any recent adult human zoo exhibitions, I guess I can only assume that you have so many samples to choose from, that you cannot decide who would be the best person to stick inside an enclosure.

I am happy to see that you followed my directive to not vote for Donald Trump. Thanks for throwing me that little bone, at least.

I guess no doctors read my blog, as the resolution to see your patients on time does not seem to have been adhered to, according to my sources. And you didn’t cure cancer. As that was really the only goal directly related to saving people’s lives, and technically only had to be accomplished by one person to satisfy the demand, I have to say I am really bummed that that one got no traction.

In retrospect, I guess you could say that I probably overreached a bit with last year’s list. So, this year, I’m just going to give you one thing to do. Well, actually two.

I’m rolling over the cancer curing command. And even though I am erasing the rest of last year’s list, I would like to gently suggest that it will probably be a little more difficult to accomplish this if you are wasting your time watching Toddlers and Tiaras.

Número two-o is to back up your computer. And this has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that I just lost my favorite recipe for Nestlé chocolate chip cookies as related to me by Phoebe Buffay when my own computer committed Hari Kari a couple of days ago.

The truth is, if you discover the cure for cancer, and your computer crashes and you have no backup, you’re going to be pretty upset with yourself.

Or so I would imagine.

20130101-172505.jpg
PS – I can’t figure out how to caption pictures using my iPad WordPress app. And this was one of the few pictures in my photo library I could include. So, I’m sorry that it has nothing to do with my post. But I’m working with a handicap here, so I hope you will cut me some slack. Even though I didn’t cut you any.

I’m Not Dead Yet

So, I went to see Dr. Jimmy, the other day, and he seems to think it is unlikely that I have a blood clot, despite the overwhelming evidence on the internet to the contrary.  Because I love Dr. Jimmy (in a completely Hippocratic way, of course), I feel somewhat relieved.  To be honest, I almost did not go to see Dr. Jimmy because my leg felt a lot better on the day of my appointment, but we haven’t seen each other in awhile, so I did not want to hurt his feelings by canceling my appointment.

Plus, I wasn’t sure if they had one of those 24-hour cancellation policies requiring me to pay anyway, so I might as well go and try to get my co-pay’s worth.

Dr. Jimmy, like me, has a Dorfenbergerthalumus that overheats when he is late.  This is a very rare trait in doctors, as many of you will attest, I am sure.  My appointment was at 11:30.  At 11:40, the nurse called me back to the exam room, and asked me a few questions.  After taking my blood pressure, which is one of the few medical tests I always ace, she walked out, and said that Dr. Jimmy would be in soon.  About 60 seconds later, I heard my chart being taken out of its pocket on the front of the door, a quick knock, and Dr. Jimmy strode in.

“That was fast!” I commented.

“No, it wasn’t,” he frowned.  “What time was your appointment?”

“11:30,” I said.

He looked at his watch, and shook his head, frowning.  “I hate running late.  But I’ve had a couple of people this morning who had more than one issue.  I don’t mind if they need to talk about multiple problems, but I wish they would tell the office when they make the appointment, so we can plan enough time for them.”

I tsk-tsked, completely sympathetic, despite the fact that, the day before, I had considered doing the same exact thing when my throat morphed into a volcano.  “I’ll just have to ask Dr. Jimmy about that, too,” I thought, as I swallowed a Zyrtec-D, which calmed the volcano, making my near Appointment Faux-Pas wholly unnecessary.  I didn’t have enough time between the throat scare (is it strep?  Oh, my God, if I don’t get it diagnosed in time, I’m going to die of Scarlet Fever.  Or, at least be blinded like Mary in Little House on the Prairie.  I am not nice like Mary.  Blindness would definitely not improve my temperament…) and my appointment to imagine any other new ailments, so, mercifully, I only had one enigma for him to solve.

Of course, he could not solve it.  Because there is probably nothing wrong.  At least nothing life-threatening.  But it helps to have him say, “No, I don’t think you’re going to die from a pulmonary embolism.”  It’s definitely worth the $15.

Even if he does smile a bit and shake his head.

Wonderbutt waiting in the chair for another chance to give me a blood clot. He is looking away because he is mad at me for walking past the chair instead of settling in and folding myself like a pretzel so he can get comfortable.

Wonderbutt – still waiting, completely forlorn that I have not joined him in the chair for our nightly ritual.  Don’t worry – I sat with him after that.  Didn’t want the poor guy to die of a broken heart.  Though that would be fitting revenge for giving me a blood clot.

%d bloggers like this: