Long Time No Rant

Hello fellow bloggers.  I have returned from under the rock and would like to rant a little bit.  If it’s ok with ya’ll.   I would like to dive into the brouhaha about the plublic school dress code.

I, personally, am happy to see this take place.  I drive around quite a bit with my job, and have the opportunity to see students coming and going around schools.  I must be getting old because I am truly disappointed in the general dress of the kids.  Yes, I was a kid once, and it was the late 60’s/early 70’s and I remember some of the lame things that we wore. 

These clothes aren’t lame, they’re just ugly and don’t do justice to the young people that are wearing them.  Girls who have more belly that I worry about, letting it all hang out with belly rings.  Breasts, now it seems growing earlier than usual bursting out of skimpy tank tops.  Pants or shorts that are hanging the the balance on hips that seem to be advertising something.  And don’t even get me started on tattoos! 

Young men, who are our future business leaders and fathers, have more trouble walking because one hand is forever positioned in a pocket (trying to be inconspicuous) trying desperately to keep the pants up, even though they are hanging precariously below the faded boxers or briefs.  My favorite chant is the rap song ‘Pull your pants up boy’ at www.pullyourpantsupmission.com and I really DO want to jump out and pull those pants up.  (I know the general hygiene of young men and I SURE don’t want to see those nasty boxers/briefs that are trying hard to grasp the waistband of the jeans.)

I must admit that I am quite biased due to the fact that I was a prisoner at a Catholic girls school with nuns who investigated every hem line, collar and detail of our fall/winter and spring/summer uniforms.  Yes, I had attended public schools in grade school, but back in the dinosaur days, our moms dressed us conservatively.  Now that our kids go to the same school I did, we are back in uniform mode.  Our kids love it.  No wondering what to wear, if it’s acceptable, and if it fits the groove of what the cool kids are wearing. 

I have spoken with a few folks about this dress code change and for the most part, not everyone is happy.  They are against having to go and buy more clothes.  I WISH that we could buy our things at local stores.  NOOOOOO!  It costs $30 for a pair of pants for our son (who has to have 3 pairs)and over $25 for a skort for our daughter (who also has to have 3) and shirts with the school logo(3 short sleeve/3 long sleeve each at $20).  Then there are the P.E. shirts, shorts,and sweats with the school logo (about $120), jackets, and shoes that are acceptable.  Yep, would LOVE to buy our stuff at Wal-Mart! 

I will say that I hope and believe from past experience, that kids will do better due to the fact that all of them look the same, so they are not concentrating on what they need to have or who doesn’t have it.  When you all look the same, no one cares if you are in a low income level and have to wear the same clothes every day (even if they are clean) or if you are richer than Croesus and can afford the absolute best.   You judge the person on who they are inside.  This can lead to some great friendships between some that never would have met if they were wearing those ‘other’ clothes. 

Yes, I know that I will probably get a lot of negative replies, but give it all a chance.  After all, Catholic schools have been doing it for a long time and it can’t be all bad.  Thanks for letting me out long enough to rant.   

In response…

Well…. I just read Slarti’s account (Sorry, he’s asleep and I still don’t know how to do a link yet without him to show me) and truly am blessed.   I know what he’s talking about – the love thing.  The first few times we met, I wasn’t too crazy about him, thought he had terrible sense in fashion (how was I to know that he was wearing donated clothing because his family had lost their house in a fire?), and thought he was waaaaay to weird for me. 

Little did I know that thing called ‘love’ sneaks up on you.  The more we were together, the more I became comfortable in his presence.  Considering I had just come out of a terrible abusive marriage a few years earlier, this wonderful man stuck in there- proving me wrong about my views of all men.  He stayed by my side, slowly showing me that being there was a sign of faithfulness, patience, and trust.  (Which by the way was a VERY hard thing for me to do at that point.)

He was the complete opposite- I’m logical, he’s the head in the clouds.  I’m boring, he’s adventurous.  I’m old (according to the kids), he’s young..er.  I was full of pessimism and he was full of hope.  I remember the way he proposed.  Not on one knee, not in a romantic restaurant, not high atop somewhere overlooking the city lights.  Nope, he had someone call down for me at the nursing home where I was working and when I came off the elevator, there was one red rose, a black box and a note that said ‘be mine forever’.  He was hiding, the clever little devil. 

My mom was ok with it.  His mom was ok with it.  My dad was not as happy as he could have been.  His dad gave us 6 months.  (outlived that one, didn’t we?)  The more we were together, the more we became as one.  He’s definitely ridden some rollercoaster rides with me in life, and stayed in place.  One of the more impressive things for me is the wonderful eulogy that he wrote about my mother at her funeral.  That really put a special beat in my heart. 

I know that some love is like he said, the romantic, can’t sleep, can’t eat, can’t do diddly squat without them type of love.  Our love goes much deeper.  The love that sustains the mundane, the inane, the insane and the ‘ole plain.  When he walks in a room, I might not show that my heart skips a beat, but I am filled with the deep sense of happiness knowing that he is with me.  Whether sitting watching t.v., driving along on a trip, or laying in bed talking, that sense of love like my parents had for each other is inside of me. 

Like he said, love is a verb.  I need to make more of that verb every day, for I have a great husband.  Plus, he can always make me laugh.  That’s important in a marriage.  Thanks honey.   

Another medical laugh…

Slarti was reading me Sista Smiff’s post about what her mother said to the doctor when the lights went out.  That reminded me of a funny that all of us women will understand.  Hope you get a smile out of it too.  Yes, it was an email forward.

   POWER OUTAGE DURING A MAMMOGRAM
 
   I actually kept my mammogram appointment. I was met with, “Hi! I’m
 Belinda!” This perky clipboard carrier smiled from ear to ear, tilted her
 head to one side and crooned, “All I need you to do is step into this
room right hereee, strip to the waist, thennnn slip on this gown. Everything
 clearrrr?”
 
   I’m thinking, “Belinda .. try decaf. This ain’t rocket science.”
 
   Belinda skipped away to prepare the chamber of horrors.
 
   Call me crazy, but I suspect a man invented this machine. It takes a
 perfectly healthy cup size of 36-B to a size 38-LONG in less than 60
 seconds. Also, girls aren’t made of sugar and spice and everything
 nice….it’s Spandex. We can be stretched, pulled and twisted over a cold
 4-inch piece of square glass and still pop back into shape.
 
   With the right side finished, Belinda flipped me (literally) to the
left and said, “Hmmmm.
   Can you stand on your tippy toes and lean in a tad so we can get
 everything?”
 
   Fine, I answered. I was freezing, bruised, and out of air, so why not
 use the remaining circulation in my legs and neck and finish me off?
 
   My body was in a holding pattern that defied gravity (with my other
boob wedged between those two 4″ pieces of square glass) when we heard, then
 felt, a zap! Complete darkness and the power went off! “What?” I yelled.
 
   “Oh, maintenance is working. Bet they hit a snag.” Belinda headed for
 the door.
 
   “Excuse me! You’re not leaving me in this vise alone, are you?” I
 shouted.
 
   Belinda kept going and said, “Oh, you fussy puppy … the door’s wide
 open so you’ll have the emergency hall lights. I’ll be righttttt
backkkk.”
 
   Before I could shout “NOOOO!” she disappeared. And that’s exactly how
 Bubba and Earl, maintenance men extraordinaire, found me, half-naked and
 part of me dangling from the Jaws of Life and the other part smashed
 between glass! After exchanging polite “Hi, how’s it going” type
greetings, Bubba (or possibly Earl) asked, to my utter disbelief, if I knew the
power
 was off.
 
   Trying to disguise my hysteria, I replied with as much calmness as
 possible. “Uh, yes, yes I did thanks.”
 
   “You bet, take care” Bubba replied and waved good-bye as though I’d
been standing in the line at the grocery store.
 
   Two hours later, Belinda breezes in wearing a sheepish grin and making
 no attempt to suppress her amusement, she said. “Oh I am soooo sorry! The
 power came back on and I totally forgot about you! And silly me, I went
to lunch. Are we upset?”
 
   And that, Your Honor, is exactly how her head ended up between the
 clamps………
 

Hearing things…eh?

This is one of those short but silly jaunts into the problem that many of us face.. disturbances in hearing.  Now some of us come by it naturally because of age, some of us by stupidity, such as sticking our heads in the giant speakers at concerts, some due to medical problems.  But all of us will experience at one time or another the frustration of not hearing things like they were said and creating an interesting predicament because of it.

Here are some examples of things that I’ve had the misfortune (or fortune) of misinterpreting. 

A doctor I worked with was discussing an order for a patient with the floor nurse.  As I came around the corner to the station, I thought that it was very progressive of the doc to order a six pack for the patient.  I commented on this and praised the doc for this terrific treatment.  A look of confusion came over the doc’s face and then he and the nurse began to laugh.  When I asked what the problem was, the doc stated that the order was for a ‘sitz bath’ and not the six pack that I was so impressed with.  I did manage to quit laughing long enough to ask if the patient could have a six pack while they were taking the sitz bath.  The doc did ponder a minute before refusing with a smile. 

Another time,  I was helping a patient to get ready to go home since their rehabilitation time was finished.  A nurse asked me to check on his ‘baloney’.  I went to the staff refrigerator and looked at all the items in there with names on them and reported back to the nurse that he had no food stuffs in the fridge.  She had the same blank look that the first doc did and finally began laughing and said that she had asked me to check his ‘belongings’.  Needless to say, we both had to get that one out of our system before we could resume work on the floor. 

Recently, a delighful patient was having a hard day and I was trying to cheer her up.  She was talking about not wanting to cry about things.  I sang the phrase ‘don’t cry for me argentina’ to which the patient looked at me with a smile and asked, ‘what was that about oranges and peaches?’  We both laughed and managed to make her feel a bit better. 

Anyway, I’m not the only one that has trouble with hearing in our family.  The kids never hear ANYTHING  that we say when we need them to do something, but they can hear from across the house if we are trying to sneak into the refrigerator for some ice cream.    Sound familiar?  The poor hubby is actually worse than me (I think) about mishearing lyrics to songs.  Some of the things that come out of his mouth when we are singing to the radio is enough to make me snort while I’m driving.  I gently correct him after I quit giggling and off we go on another song. 

I ain’t misbehavin’, I’m just mishearin’ ! 

Boys

I read what Slarti had to say about his daughter and I think that is one of the nicest comments I’ve read in a long time.  I can only wonder what else he thinks will happen in the next few years as she grows up.(but hopefully not away)

I guess you could say that I felt the same way about my son when he came home.  (Guess who I am now?) I was in such awe of this squirmy, pudgy, cheeky (literally looking like a stuffed chipmunk), bundle in pink (how’s that again?) that I almost forgot to take him from the poor lady that was holding him.   After a quick physical ‘inspection’ to make sure that everything was in the proper place, I was content to hold him for a bit.

I took him to the ladies room to ‘exchange’ clothing(we’d brought something more suitable for the weather) and marveled at the cute little body before me.  Yes, I am very familiar with the physical attributes of male and female.  I am also familiar with all of the changes that these physical attributes will go through as the years go by.

But to even think for one, single, solitary, miniscule, nanosecond that I would know what changes go through a boy’s mind and personality?  Ha!  I think I know more about what goes on at Mason’s meeting.  As time has gone by, this child continues to amaze, frustrate, humor, sadden, and just plain confuse the crud out of me.  One moment he is letting me hug him and then next he is rolling his eyes and backing away (like you would from a rattlesnake) and putting his hand out as if to say.. don’t touch me, you’re poisonous. 

One moment I hear him say a nice thing to me and thank me and the next, he is a smart mouth little cuss that needs a swift ‘whop’ with a 2×4.  Too immature to know too much and much too mature at this stage in life.   Quiet about the knowings of the Easter bunny and Santa Claus, but can tell you all about how reproduction is done (except the important part)and the birth of a baby.  Hasn’t asked questions about his own body, but knows about terrible things  like the Holocaust, the KKK, innocent victims of shootings in schools. 

How do I deal with this boy with the intelligence of a much older person who can carry on a conversation with his teachers , who report back to me about it with pride and surprise.  I know what is going to happen physically, but how can a mom let her son know that it’s ok to talk with his mom about such things- that I won’t embarrass him (although he will surely think so), that I will have to fend off the girls just as hard as his dad will for his sister.  He, the bearer of the double dimples and the quick smile, the goofy laugh, the quick wit.  

I hope to guide him as his dad does his sister in the correct ways to treat the opposite sex-knowing that I might have to have a shoulder for him as well as her one day.  We are in the process of trying to raise them as good Christians, which I know will take them farther than they know.  To be independent one day and have that special someone to share their life with. 

But, for now, I have a boy that infuriates me by lollygaggin, smartymouthin, and trying to sneak up behind me and scare me all the time.  Am I alone?  NOOOOO!  More moms with boys commiserate with me.  Am I still in love with my baby boy?  You bet.  Until the time where I can’t hug him anymore.  Or until one of us won’t roll our eyes at the other. 

Rantings from the soap box

Here I am again with another tangent or 2 to expound upon.  To begin, some of you know me and most of you don’t.  I’ve yet to get an ‘avatar’ up and would like to be incognito for another few days before I let you in.  Now, onto the show.  First, does it ever bother you when phone etiquette is not followed per Southern tradition?  (Sorry about this for those of you who aren’t native southerners.)I had someone to just hang up on me today while I was still talking, trying to ‘close’ the call.  That just steams my veggies.  This was not a young person who is at the stage in life where they don’t care about anyone else, this was an older, more dignified person.  As I’m trying to ‘wrap up’ a conversation, the person just hangs up the phone without a hi, by or kiss my grits.  Another thing is when people dial a number and then ask ‘who is this?’  Don’t you KNOW who you just called?  Was this a random pick of numbers?  Were you doing it on purpose just to get a chance to chat?  I have actually asked people that did that, ‘don’t you know who you just called?’  They look at me like I’m a bad alien from the old star trek shows.  Am I the only one that actually KNOWS who I call when I dial the number?   Like I’m going to  dial 911 and go, ” yeah, who’s this? ”  Duh.

Onto my next rant– growling stomachs.  I hate the loud, embarrassing, and alien noises that our stomachs give us when they are telling us it’s time for grub.  Not the dainty little grumble, I’m talking the deep in the depth, long rolling Jabba the Hut jobs that ALWAYS happen at the worst times.  The library, during a test, a job interview, church service, and I guess worst of all, funerals.   I am the unhappy recipient of this undoing not only tonight during my daughter’s piano lesson, but a couple of Sundays ago.  Trying my best to listen to our preacher outline a new direction for our congregation this year, my stomach had it’s own agenda.  Distracting me from what was important, reminding me that I was hungry and most of all, embarrassing me next to my peers.  (who politely giggled at every subterranean noise emitted from my midsection)  After a while, my good friend next to me leaned over and asked if I wanted her to get something out of the church kitchen.  I replied no.  She asked if I needed a coke.  Again, no.   Finally, she asked if she could sock me in the stomach to get it to shut up and proceeded to make a slapping motion towards my digestive area.  (To which we both giggled a bit too loud.)  Oh what to do when there is a disturbance in the force that cannot be alleviated without moving the whole body to an area where there is sustenance  to quell the savage beast! 

Whoops, out of time and my soap box is shrinking.  Hope this gives you pause for thought and if nothing else, a giggle while you are thinking of who to call while your stomach is grumbling.

Kids and the Bleahs

Slartibartfast said that he was in a ‘blue funk’ the other day in this post and his kids say that they never have any fun.  Kids are just as adept as mothers at giving ‘guilt trips’.  I know of one who wants to give a guilt trip to his parents every day by telling them that everything that goes wrong in his life is their fault and he takes no responsibility whatsoever for anything.  One day, I hope that something goes pretty wrong (not physically painful) that he has no way of blaming on anyone but himself.  Sound like a friend of mine… self fulfilling prophecy.  Blames everything but herself for her failures in life… not being able to keep a job, not having friends to trust, being close to being a recluse, gaining weight– you name it, something caused it.  Just, not her.  Yeah, she’s still a friend, just a distant one.  It’s a shame too.  Like this kid, she is very intelligent, but her intelligence stops short at common sense.  That just frosts my cookies and I can’t take more than 5 minutes of that kind of stuff before I want to strangle someone.  Oh, sorry, went off on a tangent.  Back to the guilt trips.  I am learning from other parents to just say, T.S.  or tough s…t– not TO the kids, but to the ‘intended trip’ they are trying to give.  “I don’t want to hear it” is my motto.  Trying to teach someone to take responsibility is not easy, but when you do, you get to have more fun on the weekends!  Thanks for letting me rant and rave today.