Sometimes I forget that not everyone is as enamored with fat gassy bulldogs with an underbite as I am. Wonderbutt was hanging out on the Starbucks patio with Cap’n Firepants and me the other night, and getting lots of lovin’ from passersby. But then a tall, burly guy rounded the corner with his latte and stopped short when he saw Wonderbutt. He glared at me and backed away slowly to find a seat somewhere else. I know I can be pretty intimidating, but I can’t help but feel that Wonderbutt had something to do with the man’s quick retreat.
“Umm. Shouldn’t you be getting ready for work?”
This is never a good way to start the day. If anyone ever has the bright idea of inventing an alarm clock with this spine-tingling statement as its wake up call, rest assured that you will never rest assured again.
However, I will kiss the person who invents an alarm clock that intuitively sets itself when you fall into bed late at night or screams like a banshee when you make any attempt to shut it off in your sleep.
The middle of my day was actually not that bad considering how it started. Surprisingly.
But, apparently my Libran consciousness cannot abide by imbalance. So, I decided to end the day just as spectacularly as I began it by spilling a venti mocha all over the table at Starbucks. The table on which my iPad and iPhone both rested.
Don’t worry, though. I have my priorities. I snatched both devices out of the chocolate ocean and yelled for life-saving equipment. (Paper towels) I had to yell because not one of the other customers leapt to my aid which, sadly, has been my consistent experience with witnesses to every single one of my life-long string of disasters.
I think the electronics may have miraculously survived. My iPad case and my dry-clean only skirt did not fare so well, unfortunately.
To some people, this set of unfortunate occurrences might appear to be minor inconveniences. To me, they are clearly a message.
My husband is one lucky guy.
Who else gets to start his morning with a crazed woman leaping out of bed spouting expletives and end his day with that lovely lady returning home to repeat the same eloquent speech?
I just hope he appreciates his good fortune.
I always wanted a Starbucks dog.
You know the type. The owner sits at sidewalk table sipping her coffee while the dog calmly snoozes on the ground behind her chair. His tail wags every once in awhile as other people approach and ask leave to pet him. The owner smiles and nods, and everyone comments on the laid-back canine’s sophistication and fine manners.
It was pretty clear nearly from the outset that Wonderbutt would not be a Starbucks dog.
An animal who Poops as He Walks (and farts to the beat of the Texas Two-Step when he is still) is generally not welcomed by patrons of eating establishments or coffee shops.
Nevertheless, after nearly 3 years of holding out hope that Wonderbutt would one day develop some social graces, I decided to stop waiting for
San Antonio Hell to freeze over and just take him to Starbucks anyway.
When I informed my husband (the long suffering Cap’n Firepants) of this plan, he gave me the why-don’t-you-just-check-yourself-into- a-mental-hospital-and-save-us-all-a-lot-of-trouble look that he has been giving me more and more often lately.
But he has learned that I must make my own mistakes because, like Wonderbutt, I will scratch my butt when I have an itch – even if it means that I am going to fall over backwards and bonk my head on the concrete floor.
I was grimly certain that this was going to turn into some kind of Marley and Me fiasco, with the not too remote chance of being banned from every Starbucks in the universe after an episode of Wonderbutt humping a few customers, wrapping his leash around a table, and dragging it into the adjacent Trader Joe’s parking lot.
But I figured, “At least I make sure he poops before we leave the house.”
I used my new trick of letting him into the part of the yard where he is never allowed to poop which, of course, makes it inevitable that he will indeed defecate right on the walking path. I sealed the deal by dramatically declaring, “Oh, no! Please don’t poop there!” And, of course, that is exactly what he did.
Then, we hopped in the car to take Dimples to swim practice, and continued on to Starbucks with my backpack full of plastic bags for the rest of the poop that I knew would follow as soon as Wonderbutt realized that his “movements” were restricted.
Cap’n Firepants met me at Starbucks, and sat outside with Wonderbutt as I picked up our order. Then, the three of us hung out under the shade – waiting.
I was waiting for Wonderbutt to invent a new way to embarrass me, but it seems that I was doomed to be disappointed. Although he was certainly not the laid-back Starbucks dog of my dreams, he was surprisingly well-behaved. There were two other groups of people on the patio – who completely ignored him. Other than approaching every new person that entered the area in the hope of licking them, Wonderbutt remained by us – alert, but somewhat disappointed by the lack of attention he was receiving. He didn’t seem to understand the point of this new activity, but was not completely adverse to sacrificing the boredom of the lonely kitchen for this exciting change of scenery.
Overall, to the surprise of all parties involved, the experiment was a success. Wonderbutt lasted two hours at Starbucks without getting us kicked out or threatened with a lawsuit. I guess, if I want blog fodder, I will have to become a bit more adventurous.
Stay tuned for the next installment: Wonderbutt Goes to Church and Burps During the Homily.
Don’t worry. I’ll still bring the plastic bags – just in case.
The True Test of a Person’s Character is What She Does When No One is Watching But She Thinks They Are
I can be a considerate person when pressed, but most of the time, I just do nice things because I’m afraid I’m on a reality show.
I’m sitting here at Starbucks trying to figure out a fabulous topic for today’s post. I had one, but it involved Dimples. She always gets final say-so on any stories featuring her, and she put the big kibosh on this one.
So, instead, I’m staring forlornly at my iPad screen, and a man gets up from one of the tables, inadvertently hitting some kind of brochure holder full of pamphlets, sending them flying all over the floor.
“Oh, darn,” he says. And, no, I did not censor that. I. KNOW! I didn’t know people still say that, either.
Then he walks to the employee door in the back of the store and disappears.
I look at the mess on the floor. I look at the employees working behind the bar. I look back at the mess on the floor. Not one person seems inclined to pick it up.
I just know I’m being featured on some hidden camera show. They’re trying to bust people who ignore pamphlets strewn all over the floor – to reveal the callous behavior of people who drink skinny, decaf mochas as they try to pass the time while their daughters who have editorial control over their blogs practice synchronized swimming.
This is my chance to show my heroic side. I casually get up and walk over to the mess. I collect all of the brochures, straighten them out, and put them back into the holder, placing it carefully in its spot behind the basket of creamer or sugar or whatever it is that I don’t use.
I walk back to my seat. No one claps. No one jumps out of the back room saying, “You’re the first person today to actually pick that up! You wouldn’t believe how many times we’ve done this skit and people completely ignored the mess! It just proves what a sad world we live in that no one cares about brochures scattered all over the floor.”
I know what you’re thinking. “This lady is a saint. Some day, they are going to write on her tombstone, ‘Here lies Mrs. Cap’n Firepants, the Mother Teresa of the 21st century. She saved spiders and snakes and credit card advertisements. And just because she did it out of fear of being featured on What Would You Do? with John Quinones doesn’t make her any less of role model. May the Force be With You.'”
or, I guess it could say,
“Here lies a woman who kept picking up random things and we couldn’t raise enough money on Kickstarter to buy more than this brick to mark her grave. Please take a Mastercard application before you leave.”
Who cares? At least I won’t have to worry about hidden cameras when I’m dead.
Starbucks Speaker: Hello. What can I get started for you today?
Me: A venti, non-fat mocha (whatimeant2say – For the love of God, please give me something that will help me feel like I can make it through this miserable day on 5 hours of sleep!)
Starbucks Speaker: garble, garble, mocha
Me: Uh, yes, but please make it non-fat.
Starbucks Speaker: I said that.
Me: O.K. (whatimeant2say – Hey! I couldn’t hear you! And I have been having issues with my weight lately. My jeans suddenly stopped fitting and I’m having self-confidence problems in addition to the mysterious stomach illness that my doctor cannot seem to diagnose or treat, and the last thing I need is to spend my day feeling guilty about the designer coffee I ingested with FAT MILK – or feeling angry at a grumpy Starbucks Speaker.)
I drive up to the window. No one is there. Finally, a woman comes up to the window. She is fumbling with register tape or something, but eventually looks at me.
Evil Czarista (impatiently): Yes?
She glares at me as though I have just interrupted her in the middle of launching a nuclear missile.
Evil Czarista (more impatiently): What can I do for you?
Me: Uh, venti non-fat Mocha? (whatimeant2say – Didn’t I just go through this with you at the speaker? And, didn’t you ask me, “What can I start for you?” Doesn’t that imply that, upon receiving my statement, you will actually start creating my drink so that it will be close to ready by the time I arrive at this window? So, I won’t have to ask for it again?)
Evil Czarista: garble, garble, skinny mocha
Me: Yeah (whatimeant2say – Oh, that’s what you said before, isn’t it? Can you tell me this: why is it easier for you to say “skinny” instead of “non-fat?” Aren’t they both two-syllable comments? And, how do I know that “skinny” doesn’t just mean 2% milk? Because, to me, NO FAT would actually be more how I would describe an “emaciated” person, not a skinny one. Of course, “emaciated” is 5 syllables – which would totally blow the whole concept of abbreviating the order.)
I wait as another girl meanders in, and E.C. tells her my order. She begins to make the drink. I stare at the overflowing trash can that is the center focus of the drive-through window, wondering if they have already filled it that much this morning or if no one bothered to take it out last night.
Evil Czarista: garble, garble
Me: O.K. (whatimeant2say – How do you sound like you are still talking through a speaker that has its wires crossed when you are speaking to me directly from 2 feet away? I am assuming you want my money since you are holding out the palm of your hand.)
I give her the money.
And I stick a tip in the jar. Yes, I’m a doormat.
Evil Czarista: Here.
She hands me the coffee.
Me: Thanks (whatimeant2add– for making the start of my day even worse than it appeared when I got up this morning. And I will be taking this directly to the lab to make sure it is NON-FAT. And that you didn’t spit in it.)
With that kind of attitude, I may have to start going to the one across the street.photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/hannasmith/3876511753/”>hanna_ms</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/”>cc</a>
Why I’m Still Depressed (but I Promise it’s the Last Day):
I had my colonoscopy at 7 a.m. I woke up from the anesthesia with absolutely no side effects. I was completely lucid. I had hoped that I would be slightly loopy, and Cap’n Firepants could post me on YouTube so I could become a viral internet sensation like “David After the Dentist”.Vodpod videos no longer available.
No such luck.
After fasting for over 24 hours, I was ready for a great meal, but the Nurse Who Apparently Needs to Have Her Own Colonoscopy kaboshed that by saying all I could have was some eggs and toast. No Starbucks. No breakfast tacos. No Diet Coke. On the way home, I tried to tell Cap’n Firepants that the Nurse Who Apparently Needs to Have Her Own Colonoscopy And I Would Be Happy to Give It To Her was wrong. Every single one of my colonscopied friends has told me that they went to a restaurant afterward and chowed down. Cap’n Firepants said, “Now, if every one of your friends jumped off a bridge -” O.K. He didn’t say that. He just shook his head condescendingly, drove me home, and made me some scrambled eggs. He wouldn’t even put picante sauce on them.
The upshot of this whole adventure is that my colon has nothing wrong with it. Which should be good news. But that means that my symptoms now get the vague diagnosis of Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Which makes my bowel not the only thing that is irritated.
Wonderbutt’s nursing skills are about as empathetic as the Nurse Who Apparently Needs to Have Her Own Colonoscopy And I Would Be Happy to Give It To Her Without the Benefit of Anesthesia. I thought he would cuddle up with me on the couch while I took a nap. And he did. What I did not know was that he would end up snoring with his face a centimeter away from mine and that his 65 pounds of puppy love would make me feel like the marshmallow in a Smore.
After I decided to abandon Wonderbutt for my less affectionate, but less nasally challenged, bed, Wonderbutt apparently felt slighted. Before I left the room, I told him to pretend I was at work, but he seemed to interpret this differently than my intended message.
Cap’n Firepants came home that afternoon, and Wonderbutt happily greeted him with something in his mouth. My glasses.
Ironically, Wonderbutt’s stomach can happily accept my twisted wire frames, and I cannot even eat an apple without experiencing an intestinal Civil War.
Cap’n Firepants seemed to think the glasses incident was amusing. He said we could probably take the lenses in, and just buy some frames.
I pointed out that it might be difficult for me to see through all of the bite impressions. He thought the marks on the glass were just slobber, apparently.
I would like to know why Cap’n Firepants suddenly finds Wonderbutt’s escapades funny.
I may not be loopy, but I find it quite difficult to compose a blog post with a giant Diet Coke withdrawal headache crushing my brain.
I can’t see why no one can figure out what is wrong with me, and I can’t see why I can’t have a big feast to celebrate being a big girl and drinking a gallon of MoviPrep. I especially can’t see why I can’t have a Diet Coke.
And now, as Wonderbutt has communicated quite clearly, I just really can’t see.