It's been way too long since I posted anything...this Craigslist ad I wrote is the most I've done in months. Enjoy!
About a month ago my husband told me he was planning on going to an auction with a few of his buddies. I figure that's a pretty safe place for him to hang out for a Saturday, I mean how much money could he actually waste there, right? The day arrives, his friends show up and they all pile into his pickup truck and head out to the auction. Woo-hoo! A few hours to catch up on some housework (lol!) or read a book, whichever.
Several hours later finds me out in the yard watering my trees when the hubby pops out the back door and lures me in with his excited "Come see what I bought for you!" What could it be? Did he find me a beautiful, 1940s waterfall bedroom set for some amazingly low price? Maybe he bought me some cool fish tank stand so I can expand my aquatic hobby. The excitement is simply overwhelming, so I rush inside to see what he found.
Well, my hopes were dashed upon entering my kitchen to find my beaming husband standing behind a vacuum cleaner. An old, used and very chrome-y looking vacuum cleaner. Um, thanks? But I'm not a complete meany so I say "Oh, it's a vacuum cleaner. Okay, is it better than the one I already own?" And my overly proud of his purchase husband begins to extol me on the virtues of this amazing machine.
This, he informs me, is a KIRBY!!! vacuum cleaner. The very best of the best of vacuum cleaners. Why, all the women whose homes he has admired for many years use KIRBY!!! vacuum cleaners. Nothing less will do. And look at all the attachments, he says. There are some that we'll probably never even figure out what they're for, but certainly they are very important to have. AND, it has extra bags! So we don't even have to worry about buying new bags for a long time ("longer still because my wife rarely vacuums" was thankfully left out). He briefly mentions the shampoo attachment (for when the idiot cats throw-up, again!) and then, he pulls out an attachment and with a reverence usually reserved for vintage whiskey or especially beautiful revolvers, he intones "And this brush...this brush is so you can clean the blinds!"
I'm duly impressed with his sales spiel, but he's not done yet. Because, like any good vacuum cleaner salesman would do, he insists on showing me how it works. As an aside, I've been around vacuums for a very long time and am fairly well versed in how they work. Evidently hubby has forgotten this and I hate to ruin his moment in the sun so I go along with him. It should be noted that by this time, our twelve year old son has joined us to watch this new wonder do it's magic.
My husband carefully adds the attachment to the long hose and plugs the machine in. He wheels the whole thing over to the blinds on the back door, looks at me with a smile and says "Watch this!" Hitting the "on" switch, the KIRBY!!! comes to life with a "RAWR!" of power. You can feel the surge of adrenaline pulsing through it's chrome-y parts. The cats scatter to the far corners of the house and the dogs look on it with horror. It is an animal. It is power, and virility and beauty all wrapped up into one amazing machine. And then...our son says "what's that smell?"
Hubby continues to run the brush over the blinds only looking over his shoulder long enough to say "That's raw power son" before going back to obliterating the dust from the slats. I have to say that the speed with which that dust was sucked into the KIRBY!!! was a sight to behold. It never stood a chance. About four slats in, our son again says "what's that smell?" and I realize that I am starting to smell something as well. Something...burny...electrically...electrically burny...and then Hubby smells it too. He turns around and looks down at his amazing machine and says "OMG! It's on fire!" And I dumbly reply "What is?" My husband's eyes get huge and he shouts "The vacuum cleaner is on fire! OMG! It's on fire! Holy sh!!!t! Unplug it!"
I dutifully unplug the raging monster and my heroic husband picks the flaming beast up in one massive fist and carries it outside. Upon being released from the source of fuel, this cousin of the Kraken (land version) loses steam and puts itself out. The stench of it's fury permeates my house and now, my back patio as well. The neighbors may or may not now believe they live next door to a long time sailor. Our son stands transfixed on the patio, staring at his father in what I can only assume is awe at his heroic acts.
Once the emergency is over, our hero stands in defeat, looking at his beloved KIRBY!!!, still slightly smoking at his feet. Lifting his eyes to mine, he says sadly "I guess I'll have to throw it away...I'm sorry your gift sucked." It breaks my heart to see him so destroyed. He wanted to badly to bring me this wonderful machine that he knew would make me the happiest woman in the world. So I tell him that he shouldn't throw it away. It's too GOOD to throw away. I mean, it's a KIRBY!!! for goodness sakes! They don't get thrown away! I promise him I will salvage the parts and sell them to the good people of Craigslist. People who appreciate what a wonder a KIRBY!!! is, people who will want it's parts to replace the ones on their own KIRBYs!!! Not because they broke obviously (because KIRBYs!!! don't break), but because sometimes the parts on their own KIRBYs!!! can just no longer stand up to the raw power of the machine.
So, with all of that in mind, I'm offering the remains, no, the strongest parts, of my husband's loving gift to me. I'm asking $30 (obo) for everything you see in the foreground of the first picture. For you highly technical folks, that doesn't include the background items, desk, empty box, carpeting or any animals that may have slipped into the shot (well, the cats might be negotiable) Cash only and you must pick up.
Thursday, May 23, 2013
It's been way too long since I posted anything...this Craigslist ad I wrote is the most I've done in months. Enjoy!
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
This is a guest post, written by my husband...
Uh oh, I bet that little tidbit plays poorly if the mainstream gets ahold of it!
Saturday, October 20, 2012
So I've heard rumblings from the complaint department about the lack of posting lately. It's not for lack of fodder, I assure you. I've been sort of busy doing stuff I can't really talk about yet because it's not set in stone, but I don't want to disappoint my three readers so I will regale you with a tale...
For the past week, we have been hosting Lola while my sister and Music Man are overseas making music in Belgium and other various locales. Lola, if you remember back, is their absolutely adorable long-haired miniature dachshund. This is her as a puppy...
So cute. But I digress.
Lola, as cute as she is, is in love with terrorizing my cats. She does not have cats in her home so they are one of the novelties and best parts about staying with Auntie Mirth. But she doesn't terrorize all of the cats, just the one. See, The Hooligan has enough sense to make himself scarce. He doesn't come out until after bedtime when Lola is safely kenneled. He's surprisingly self preserving for a cat that is of questionable IQ. The Antagonizer is flat out lazy and just refuses to run from Lola. So while Lola would like to chase her, it's really hard to chase a furry lump that just lays there. But Tiberius, oh Tiberius you poor thing, he runs like the devil himself is chasing him. And maybe, just maybe, she is.
The typical situation plays out like this...
Tiberius is minding his own business, walking from one nap spot to another, when Lola spots him. She immediately heads full bore in his direction. Tiberius panics and starts running towards any perceived safety. Lola follows, looking absolutely gleeful. Around and around they go until either Tiberius figures out to jump up onto something tall enough that she can't follow or I am able to capture Lola and put her in time out in her coop (fenced in area in my kitchen.) Lola calms down, gets released from prison and spots the cat again. Lather, rinse, repeat. All day long.
I've tried explaining to Tiberius that he doesn't need to run. He outweighs her probably 2-1, he has longer arms and faster reflexes. He clearly has the advantage. But no, every day for four days we had the same scenario being played out. Clearly something needed to change. And it did.
On the fifth day, Tiberius was laying in the kitchen next to end of the cabinets. Lola came around the corner, spotted him and immediately headed towards him at top speed. But Tiberius just looked at her and didn't move. She kept running but suddenly a really confused look crossed her face as she realized he wasn't running. She hit the brakes. Since she has furry feet and was on the tile, this just served to make her slide. Right smack into the cat. Who refused to move.
Lola scrambled to her feet and gave the cat a poke with her nose. Tiberius responded by growling at her and raising a paw at her head. She backed up, tilting her head in confusion at him. He didn't get up and he didn't stop growling. But he did put his paw down.
I figured we were done. The cat finally figured out the secret to dealing with little skippy dogs that like to chase. You don't run, they don't chase, everyone is happy. But Tiberius wasn't quite done with his stand.
About fifteen minutes later I put Lola in her coop to eat her meal. As a side note, I don't usually separate my dogs while they eat but Lola doesn't have a whole lot of sense in the dealing with other dogs department and doesn't realize that sticking your head into the dish of another dog could be dangerous. I'd like to return her to her loving owners in one piece thank you very much. So I separate her from them during meals. Moving on.
So Lola has just been put into her coop to eat and I go sit on the couch about five feet away to catch up on some very important thing that the Internet has to offer. About a minute later I hear a Thump! and look over to see that Tiberius has jumped into the coop with Lola. Hmmm, this is interesting. Wonder what's going to happen? Apparently so did Lola as she backed warily away from Tiberius.
After looking at the dog for about fifteen seconds, Tiberius reached a paw out, hooked the edge of her food dish and pulled it towards himself. He never broke eye contact with her while he did so. Then he settled in and starting eating her food. Lola sat in the corner looking very concerned. After he had eaten enough, Tiberius stood up. Lola cringed, but he wasn't going after her. Instead, he reached his paw out again, hooked her water dish and dragged this towards himself. He continued to stare at Lola while he got a good long drink. Lola stayed in her corner. Then the cat sat next to her food and water dish and stared at her until she lay down and looked away. Then, and only then, did that rotten cat jump out of her coop and walk away.
Today is day eight and while Lola has attempted a few halfhearted runs towards Tiberius just to see if he'll run, it's been greatly reduced. He doesn't run and she gives up. Now she has moved on to trying to ferret out The Hooligan from his hiding spots. The Hooligan, who spent his formative years attached to either of the dogs necks, doesn't prefer to be harassed so I'm sure it will be interesting if she ever actually manages to corner him. Don't worry though, I've got lots of ice pack, plastic bags and a cooler...I'll try to save the severed limbs for re-attachment.
Wednesday, October 3, 2012
So we're halfway through Banned Book Week and I haven't even mentioned it once. Hmmm, I must be slacking on my game (a lot) lately.
As an avid reader, this is a subject that's close to my heart. I remember being appalled the first time I learned that people in towns across America still actually held book burnings. I couldn't believe that people still felt the need to burn a book. But evidently they do and so, an idea was born. Since that time I have periodically (no pun intended) tried to add to the collection of books in my personal library at least a few books that have banned. They don't need to be current books, in fact most of the books I have acquired have been what I would consider classic. Think Dickens, Twain, Caldwell or Steinbeck. At one time I started a list but it got so big that I kind of gave up on it (for now.)
The thing I figured out is that most books that have been banned aren't "bad" books, they are simply books that make some people uncomfortable. The problem is that just because someone is made uncomfortable by something, it doesn't mean that the something is the problem. So, I will continue to peruse the list of banned books in search of new reading material. Or in search of old reading material that I just don't have on my shelf.
I've put the list of 2011's ten most challenged titles below...two things should be noted:
1.) Brave New World should be required reading for every citizen of the US today and
2.) Within the last six months, my child has read #3 (the trilogy) and #10. I'm probably a bad mother, but I'm okay with that.
- ttyl; ttfn; l8r, g8r (series), by Lauren Myracle
Reasons: offensive language; religious viewpoint; sexually explicit; unsuited to age group
- The Color of Earth (series), by Kim Dong Hwa
Reasons: nudity; sex education; sexually explicit; unsuited to age group
- The Hunger Games trilogy, by Suzanne Collins
Reasons: anti-ethnic; anti-family; insensitivity; offensive language; occult/satanic; violence
- My Mom's Having A Baby! A Kid's Month-by-Month Guide to Pregnancy, by Dori Hillestad Butler
Reasons: nudity; sex education; sexually explicit; unsuited to age group
- The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie
Reasons: offensive language; racism; religious viewpoint; sexually explicit; unsuited to age group
- Alice (series), by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
Reasons: nudity; offensive language; religious viewpoint
- Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
Reasons: insensitivity; nudity; racism; religious viewpoint; sexually explicit
- What My Mother Doesn't Know, by Sonya Sones
Reasons: nudity; offensive language; sexually explicit
- Gossip Girl (series), by Cecily Von Ziegesar
Reasons: drugs; offensive language; sexually explicit
- To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
Reasons: offensive language; racism
Friday, September 28, 2012
About a month ago, maybe a little longer, the angelfish in my tropical tank laid a bunch of eggs on a plastic plant. For the record I do have real plants in this tank. In fact, about half the plants in there are real and I'm working towards increasing that amount. The real plants are lush, healthy and on the complete opposite end of the tank from the filter, which is the safest area in the entire tank. I only mention all of this so you can understand my consternation at my fish for deciding to lay their eggs as close to the filter as possible and on the spindliest plastic plant they could find. As expected with a first batch of eggs, these were unfertilized and the parents ended up eating them within about two days.
Fast forward to a week or so ago and I discover another batch of eggs from my angelfish. Of course, my fish didn't get any smarter in the interim and ended up laying them in almost the exact location. I figured there would be about a 50/50 chance of these eggs not being fertile as well so I wasn't getting too excited about them. But by the end of the first day I realized that none of the eggs was turning white (which would indicate they were infertile.) Then I realized that if in fact any of the eggs actually managed to hatch into fry, I had nothing to feed them. Which in turn caused me to make a panicked trip to various stores in the area only to find out that none of them carries brine shrimp eggs anymore. What the heck?
By the second day, still no white eggs and mom and dad are vigorously defending the nest. I had given up finding any brine shrimp eggs locally and went online to order some. It wasn't until after I hit the "buy" button that I realized that he delivery date wouldn't be until some time next week. Awesome. So back to the store I went to try and find something to tide my babies over on the off chance they actually hatched into something.
By the end of day two I notice the eggs appear to be vibrating. It's kind of cool to watch the entire batch shimmy, but I try to avoid doing it frequently as it gets the parents wound up.
By day three I'm seeing little tiny tails hanging out of the eggs. They are still vibrating and shimmying and I can also see two little eyes on top of their heads. I want to hug them they are so cute.
Yesterday I noticed a few of the babies starting to launch off of the leaf. This sends mom (or dad, I honestly can't tell the difference) into a frenzy of sucking up the wayward baby and spitting them back onto the leaf. Kind of like when you chase your kid out of the pantry and set them back in the room where all their toys are repeatedly. Apparently kids of all species pull the same stunt. Anyway, they're not completely free swimming at this point but I knew they would be by today.
I got up this morning to see a cloud of babies swimming around their parents. I fed the other fish at the opposite end of the tank and then put a little fry food in over the babies. They came right up and started eating, which was awesome and short lived. Mom (or dad) decided I was trying to poison their babies and proceeded to swim around sucking up the babies and spitting them away from the food. What the hell mom (or dad)? Eventually they gave up and let the babies feed, but it's been a repeat of this same procedure each time I've fed them today.
I don't know if any of the babies will actually survive to adulthood. Their chances are pretty slim considering they're in a tank with multiple members, all of whom have mouths big enough to fit a baby in. But you never know, one or two might survive. And in the meantime, it's pretty cool to watch the parenting of the adults.
So I don't know which fish is mom and which is dad, but you can see they are both parenting the fry which I think is pretty cool.
Saturday, September 22, 2012
So yeah, where the heck have I been? Apparently not on here, updating all three of my followers who actually read this. I will set that to rights immediately...
Master J: Well, the child is his own worst enemy. He's enjoying his new school and sixth grade immensely. Homework however, is the bane of his existence. If his grades were solely dependent on his test scores, he would be a straight A student. Because they are at least 40% dependent on his homework, he has two Cs. Which kind of sucks. Because the kid is in 7th grade math and reads at a 12th grade level, but he struggles to get his homework turned in on time. And the worst part? It's not that he doesn't do the homework, it's that he doesn't remember to turn it in. Yeah, my brilliant child can't pull it together long enough to turn in the homework he did so he takes a 25% deduction in the grade. Part of the issue is he is visual like me, if he can't see it he doesn't think he has it. So we're trying a new thing where instead of putting his completed homework into the "turn in" folder, we've paper clipped it to the outside of the folder. Voila! Friday's homework got turned in. We'll see if it continues.
Mister C and I are trying to do a real estate deal with my parents. We want to buy their home that sits on over an acre and sell them our home that's low maintenance and would be extremely cheap for them to live in once my dad retires in a few months. It's a win-win for both of us, if it all works out (knock on wood.)
At this point we're just waiting for the appraisal to be returned in order to qualify for the loan. I was really hoping to hear by Monday, but the lender sent Mister C an email yesterday saying she expects it around October 10th. I'm not sure in what universe it requires a full three weeks to get an appraisal report back but that's her version of events.
Our gardens from this most recent season worked out well in some respects, not so well in others. I finally harvested the last of the cantaloupes and pulled the vines out. It looks a lot bigger back there all of a sudden. I got rid of the cucumbers a few weeks ago, they pretty much sucked. I only got two cucumbers that were edible, the rest of them went huge and yellow almost from the moment they appeared. The watermelons did well and produced quite a few melons, but the heat got to them and they started rotting on the vine before ripening. I pulled them all out a few weeks ago, but one new plant has started coming back. The cherry tomatoes did really well, and one of them even reseeded itself so we have a new plant growing. The red and green peppers really took off once we removed the dying tomato plants. So far we haven't had any harvest ready peppers but I'm hoping we will soon. The strawberries got pretty well overwhelmed by the cantaloupe and stopped producing, but the plants themselves look good and are continuing to vine out and get stronger. I'm hoping they'll start producing again soon. Still no luck from the berry patch. The blackberry plants look fantastic but they haven't produced but one actual berry. The raspberry plants look less good, they've struggled the entire time they've been back there. They did produce three rather sour berries that did not please Mister C. The blueberry plants are mostly not robust. I pulled one of them out and potted it in the hopes of saving it. It seems to be surviving, but not thriving. The two grape vines are growing like crazy, they're all the way up the trellis and starting to curve over the top of the pergola. There are currently five tiny bunches of grapes on one of the vines. They are so adorable I want to pinch them, but I suspect that will not be a good thing. And finally, we went ahead and planted two apple trees and a peach tree. They are too young yet to be producing anything but they seem strong and managed to survive our brutal summer so I have hope.
In anticipation of our next growing season down here, I have started a bunch of seeds in my kitchen. I am highly disappointed with the green bean seeds I bought as they have yet to start growing. Since it's been a few weeks, I'm pretty sure they're duds and I'm going to have to restart some different ones. Having said that, everything else seems to be trying. The peas are at least four inches tall and the spinach, romaine lettuce, cherry tomatoes and onions are several inches high. I have high hopes for a productive season.
The Jeep diet is still working, slowly but steadily. I've now lost fourteen pounds and after sitting at a plateau for at least six weeks, I think I'm back on track. I did a six week challenge of push ups, dips, squats and crunches that wrapped up about a month ago. I was aiming to hit 100 push ups, 150 dips, 150 crunches and 200 squats. The last day I did the challenge I managed 125 push ups, 175 dips, 175 crunches and 300 squats. And then I went and whimpered about my hip hurting for the next two days. I now try to incorporate a more moderate 25 of each exercise into at least three days a week. And I've just started a couch to 5k running program. It's ugly. I suck at running big time, but I've found a walking trail that runs in the greenbelt and dead ends. Nobody is ever on it because it doesn't go anywhere and all the houses that line it are one story. So basically, nobody can see me dragging along and stumbling on air while I make my pathetic attempt at running (think zombie on meth and you have the general picture.) I'm pretty sure the running will be a boost to my fitness quest, no matter how I look doing it.
I think that about wraps it up, I'm heading into get some breakfast.