Thursday, January 26, 2012

Helpful Hints from Oh Hell! Geez Louise!

The hubs and I are as different as night and day, but these differences are what makes us work.  The biggest source of discontention around here is our outlook on taking care of ANYTHING.  My motto:  If  you’re going to do something, do it right the first time.  His motto:  We ain’t takin’ ‘er to the fair.  So with that said, let’s get started on some examples of why I continue to wear the pants in this family.

CARPET CLEANING.  The hubs let Thing 1 take orange pop into the living room.  Yeah, well you can guess what happened.  Spilled, half of it.  HE doesn’t tell me.  THING 1 tells me.  I then asked where.  Thing 1 showed me.  Sure enough, glowing like a black light on blood, is a huge orange stain.  Thing 1 apologizes to me.  HE apologized???  No, this won’t do.  I said, “Honey, you know you aren’t to bring pop in here so you shouldn’t have, but Daddy also knows the rule and he’s in charge.  He shouldn’t have let you bring it into the living room.”  (Aren’t my parenting skills to be envied??) 

So the hubs comes home for lunch, I said, “Did you guys have a spill last night?”.  He stops eating mid bite and doesn’t answer me, but instead looks at Thing 1 and says, “You told her?”.  Yeah, nice play moron!!  Teach the kid to lie and withhold information from his parents.  Brilliant!!  Whatever.  Not going to give the blow by blow of that argument that was held later out of Thing 1’s earshot, I’ll just get to the point.  You see, the hubs is a dumbass when it comes to adding A+B=C.  He just goes straight to “C”. 

On any stain, (we have dogs remember), he will dab the offending spot with a towel using only his fingertips for pressure.  Remove the towel and run his hand over said spot.  If it feels dry, he’s done.  He may or may not treat spot with any carpet cleaner.  He thinks if the area feels dry on top, he’s done his job.  But is always so confused when the spot has to be treated again, and again, and again.  He even said to me once, “I don’t know why I can’t clean up spills like you do.”. 

Now the irony in this is that he works in insurance, Risk Management to be precise.  He deals with flooding and the like so should be well familiar with the term wicking.  Nope, he’s not.  I had to literally explain to him that spills on carpeting is reverse wicking in his world.  THEN he finally got it.  Not really sure where he thinks all that pop went when his towel ends up primarily dry but thinks the area is dry.  Yeah, just push that shit deep in the carpet and the padding, it’ll never reappear.  Fuck me running.

CAR UPKEEP.  Oh this one is good and still pisses me off.  We had taken our financial planners advice and bought new used cars a few years ago.  Great cars, love them, both SUVs.  My hubby’s is substantially larger than mine and while he loves it and loves driving it (I think it elevates his man status in his world), he cannot ACTUALLY drive it.  Parking to be precise.  If I had a fucking dime for every time he pulls that thing in the garage leaving me 3 inches of space to get into mine!! 

Now because I know how he is, I repeatedly told him the first week of having these cars that he needed to pay close attention to where he’s parking so we could get the doors open comfortably without dinging the other one (reminder: we have small kids = car seats.)  So what does this dumbass do about four days into it?  Parks damn near on top of me, and puts a nice ding on my rear quarter panel.  Looks like somebody took a fucking tack hammer to it!  I’m pissed b/c I’d already been reminding him.  THEN, the very next day, he opens his passenger door and is again too close to me, and scrapes his door along my driver’s side door.  I actually blew up at that one because while these cars are “used”, they were still very new and in very nice condition.  Mine is black so it shows everything.  It was wintertime, the car was a lovely shade of the dull gray haze from all the shit they spray on the roads.  After I said, “Why can’t you pay attention?!?”.  He looks over his shoulder and says, “Your car is dirty.  The dirt will protect it from getting marked up.”.  Oh, ho, ho.  REALLY?!?!?!  HE’S CLUELESS!!!  So I just took a deep breath and said, “No, you’re wrong.  The dirt actually makes it worse.”, and walked back in the house.  Yeah, his little door sweep on my “dirt” is now my own little vertical EKG reading of my rage from the grit really getting those scratches nice and deep. 

But the story doesn’t stop here.  One day we were all riding as a family and came back home from wherever in the hell we went.  He’s pulling in the garage.  He knows I’m watching and he’s determined to get it right…for once.  I’m holding my breath and my fingernails have made half moons in my palms from the fists I’ve clenched.  I’m silently chanting, “You can do it.  You can do it.”.  He makes a dramatic point of pulling very far over from my car to park and lo and behold, HITS THE FUCKING HOUSE!!!!  I said not a word.  I just got out, grabbed a kid and went inside.  He backed that beast of an SUV up, assessed the damage, reparked, came inside.  Proceeds to tell me that it’s just surface scratched, it’ll be okay, the house is okay.  Yeah, because he’s the resident scratch expert, right?  I go look at it and realize that okay, this one is easily fixed.  Some good elbow grease and wax and/or buffer will take the house’s wall paint right off.  I knew I’d be the one to do this so I just went about my day.  The next day I came home from work and he says, “Hey, I got that paint off my car.”.  I stopped mid stride, slowly turned around, afraid to hope, afraid to believe.  I said, “Really?  Cool, I’ll go take a look.”.  I went out and looked and sho’ nuff, white paint is gone, but now it looks as though a cat has used the corner of the front bumper as a scratching post.  Full on cross-hatch.  (See super duper art teacher Mr. Tonda from the 4th grade?  You were right and I would need to know about this later in life.)  Like 20 children decided to make tic tac toe boards at the same time, one on top of the other.  I’m done here.  Just really done.  I’ve no more energy.  I go back in and said, “Yep, it’s gone.  How’d you do it?”.  You can probably guess how he did it already, and you’d be right.  Fucking sandpaper!!!!!!!!!!  Do we need to have a little refresher course on touching anything gritty on paint?!?!?  I mean, seriously!!!  I just gave him the best tutorial ever after I blew up over my driver’s door EKG and he forgot!!!  (I think the shrinks call that repression – pushing those unpleasant memories to the back of your mind to forever be forgotten)  Whatever.  He used sandpaper on the paint of his car.  See, went right to “C” again.  Bravo, hubs, bravo.  Now you can wear your dumbass badge of honor on the bumper of your car.

KITCHEN UTENSILS.  I’m cleaning like a mad woman a while back.  (I go in fits.  I mean I keep a neat house always, but sometimes I get in the zone and do deep cleaning.)  I happen to spy the crock by the stove containing kitchen utensils and thought, I’ll bet there’s dust and crumbs in the bottom of that thing.  Crumbs attract mice, mice attract cats, cats scare my dogs, my dogs will freak out and throw up, I’ll have to clean it up and this will prevent me from doing my deep cleaning.  I’m good at A+B=C.  Actually I rule at it.  Well that and stain lifting, but I digress.  Maybe I should have just went with it all so I could have shown off my awesome stain lifting abilities to rub it in the hubs’ face, but it’d probably be lost on him and it would just create more work for me in the long run.  Yeah, I’ve got literary ADD today. 

Alright so I start pulling utensils and notice one of my uber nice flippers.  (If you’re reading this, what do you call them??  Everyone has a different name.)  Well, these flippers are that Cephalon brand or whatever the hell it’s called.  But it’s nice end cookware that I cherish.  I see several burn marks on the actual flipper.  Goddamn it!!!  The hubs!!!!!!!  I already knew how this happened. 

He likes eggs and will make them for himself on the weekends.  When making them, he proceeds to lay the flipper on the side of the skillet to rest as opposed to the fucking stainless steel double ass spoon rest we HAD to have on our wedding gift registry.  (Metro)  He doesn’t like to get the counter dirty you see.  Well in doing this, there are now a series of burn marks on the plastic of the flipper.  Ruined.  Once again, we have anything nice, it’s not the kids that ruin it, it’s him.  That night I just asked him if he could please not rest the spatula on the side of the skillet anymore because it’s ruining the flipper.  You ready for this one?  His response, “Is that what’s causing all those marks?”.  He was serious as a heart attack too.  I was like, “Yeah.  Add plastic to heat, it’s gonna melt.”.  Him:  “God, I didn’t even think about that.”.  Surprise, surprise.  Yet another “C” moment. 

I’ll stop the tirade at this but will also share that in my favorite ever dutch oven by Cephalon (I really need to look up that brand’s spelling), he also proceeded to use a knife to cut into a pot roast I had made.  Our little resident scratch expert, our devoted little “C” man, cue the bell….didn’t even think that knife would scratch the Teflon coating.  Thanks hubs because that pot roast WAS “fair” worthy.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Snow Shoveling

Alright, so we live in the Midwest and therefore our weather will cycle through all four seasons in one given day.  In the winter time we are especially blessed by Alaskan-worthy amounts of snowfall.  So far, we've been given a hall pass and haven't had much snow this winter but on the few occasions we've received more than just a dusting, I just get pissed.  Not because of the actual weather, but because we get to look like the asshole neighbors who don't take care of their driveway and sidewalks.  You see, my husband INSISTS that he be the one to take care of this lovely chore, BUT does he get up early enough in the morning to get it done before work?  Hell to tha no.  And you want to know why?  He believes in his heart of hearts that the sun will melt most of it (despite 3 foot drifts and/or 100 mph winds) so it'll be easier to do when he gets off of work annnnnnd, he knows the neighbors on either side of us won't stop at their respective property lines on the sidewalk when they're out there at 5 am hence making less work for him when he decides to do it at 5 PM!  See?  Asshole.  I think it's rude and fortunately (or unfortunately if you don't have a black heart like me), our neighbors have caught on to him and have stopped doing this.

This year I've taken matters into my own hands and have done it as soon as he leaves for work which is an interesting dynamic since we have a baby.  I don't fuck around though.  I get after it, take care of the kid and balance the family sedan on my head all while doing it.  He came home for lunch on one of these occasions AND DIDN'T EVEN NOTICE!!!  He says, "See?  The sun worked today.".  I wanted to kick him in the balls - I would have had my toes not still been numb!  But then to pour more salt in my wound, he cannot even remember to do a path on our deck and deck steps or its landing for our dogs.  We have fu-fu dogs who don't like to get cold.  And actually, if it's bitter cold, their little feet cramp up and they get stuck outside because they can't walk so you have to watch them like a hawk if the weather is like this.  So the deck is a huge priority!  Just this past week we had some icy shit drizzle down and it coated the deck.  I have watched the poor dogs look and gauge their steps much like a drunk assesses a curb to step onto in navigating to the promise land.  I've even helped them down, but have refused to shovel just to give him the opportunity to have that "aha!" moment of self-discovery.  (And contrary to what you would think based on this blog, I don't like to emasculate him at every turn.)  I waited three days and decided today's the day!  I asked him before he left for work if he could please remember the deck.  (Again, he LOVES to do this and wants it to be HIS job).  Just guess his response.  Please.  Yep.  Here it is:  "I didn't think it needed done because the sun would melt it off.".  Enough with the fucking sun already!!!!  The sun is great, I love the sun, and yes, it does have magical powers, but C'MON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!    I politely reminded him that yes it had melted some, but the angle of the sun hitting the deck causes the railings to shadow the steps so it's now just ice.  He grudgingly goes and gets the shovel and comes back with slumped shoulders and his head sagging (much like a child when they've been naughty) and gets it done.  Thank you!!!!!!!!!!

Now let's back this tractor up a second though.  Once we had our first child five years ago, I said, "Why don't we get a snow blower so it's easier and takes less time?".  His response, "But I like the exercise and I think the shovel does a better job anyway.".  Hmmmm, so let me get this straight.  On the one hand, he's expecting the Holy Light to melt the snow (translated:  I don't want to do it), but on the other, shoveling is the route to go so it gets done properly (translated:  I care about the job I do with this).  I'm so confused.  Regardless, here's the real deal.  Bless his little metro heart, but he's CLUELESS when it comes to any type of power tool or equipment.  By the grace of God is he able to start the lawn mower.  But I really believe he fears not being able to start the thing should we own a snow blower so then he not only can't get the drive done, but he looks like a pussy to all of our manly neighbors when he has to come get me to get it started.  (They're primarily engineers)  So I guess this is how he earns his man card in the 'hood by demonstrating he can do the back breaking work of shoveling.  Meanwhile, they're watching out their windows shaking their heads saying, "What a dumbass.  You could snow blow in a fraction of the time.".  You'll never need my address if you're looking for me after a snowstorm.  Just look for the house that looks untended.  That's me!

Friday, January 20, 2012

The Grocery Store

Do ya’ll just cringe when you think about sending your husband to the grocery store for full on groceries; not the staple trip of milk, bread and butter?  Yeah, well I do, and here’s why.

About a month ago I was working some extra hours at Chateau de Hell due to the holidays.  We needed groceries so the hubby decides to take one for the team and go get them since my “free time” was pretty limited.  And after this huge concession, much like a child he announced, “I even made a list!”.  Okay, great.  I did do a silent cheer in my mind, but my experience has proven you’ve got to dole out praise sparingly so they don’t take it or you for granted.  So hi ho, hi ho, off to work I went.

I got home that night and I asked how it went.  He gave me the play by play, which is how he tells ANY story, while in my mind I’m thinking “just get to damn point”.  He began with telling me about getting the boys ready, loaded into the car, finding a spot to park, etc.  I can’t really remember much after that because this is when I usually zone out during his story time until I heard the words “we checked out”.  My eyeballs unglazed and my ears came open and he announced he spent about a hundred dollars.  Okay, cool.  So I said, “What all’d you get?”.   Mistake.  I got another play by play of each respective aisle, the products, product placement, product considerations.  I zoned out again and thought that I better throw him a bone here and say job well done.  I did and went about my business for the night.

I went upstairs and opened the linen closet only to find a shelf of hand soap.  I was like WTF???  I yelled down the stairs, “Did you buy all of this hand soap?”.  Here he came running smiling, so proud of his work.  He says, “Yeah, it was on sale.”.  Sweet Jesus, help me.  1)  We don’t need 6 hand soaps (the other 4 which are now proudly displayed throughout the house) 2)  even if it’s on sale, we really didn’t save anything by buying 10 and 3)  I HAD A F#$*ING REFILL underneath the counter in the kitchen!!!!!   I’m all about economizing and efficiency and it doesn’t stop at buying hand soap by the gallon.  So I just nodded and politely said that we had a refill bottle too so we won’t be needing this for awhile.  I then happened to get into our freezer that is now laden with bologna and cotto salami.  I knew before I even asked about it and yep, you guessed it too, it was on sale.  So I won’t pull a Master P here (my fond nickname for him that is not in homage to the rapper, but rather Master P for Master Procrastinator), and give YOU the play by play of what I found, but lets suffice it to say, I was now stocked and hand soap, paper towels, bologna (gag me!) and various other items all because they were on sale!

Now I have to give some unspoken rules here about going to the grocery store.  There are certain things I refuse to buy generic and others that absolutely must be generic.  Paper towels are ONE of those things that I refuse to buy name brand.  I am not spending $15 on a pack of them – no way, no how.  His paper towels were name brand, but because they had the “Rollback” sign mounted above them like a beacon from above beckoning him, he bought them.  I rationed those puppies out like they were gold.

But the crowning moment of glory for my hubby that got him banned officially from ever going to the grocery store unless it was for just a one-off item, was baby formula and my pop.  At the time, our son was 10 months old.  Been drinking the same friggin’ formula the entire time.  The baby needed formula on this trip to the store.  So you’re probably thinking that he forgot the formula in all his excitement over his “bargains”.  Nope, he remembered, only he bought the little travel size can.  I mean, common sense would tell you upon picking up that soup can sized thing that this isn’t going to last very long lest I also mention that wouldn’t he have thought it felt wrong picking up a much smaller can than what he’s been touching for the last 10 months??  But in his mind, “we need formula, I bought formula, it’s done”.  Regarding my pop, I drink Diet Cherry Coke like it’s water and there’s always one near me.  What does he bring home that day?  Plain ‘ol, standard variety Diet Coke.  He saw the silver on the box and thought again, “She needs pop, I bought pop, it’s done”.  So guess who had to go to the store the next day?  ME, but my hands were super clean though.