I think that I’m just going to fire some rapid bullet points out tonight, because it’s been a very busy day that involved too much coffee on my part and then involved me feeling like a lone, lame gazelle amidst thirteen lion cubs in kindergarten PE. I stuck my head out the gym doors as my friend Tera (who teaches 1st grade) walked by and said, “I know they’re going to drag me down in here!” She told me, with an enormous smile, “If your Suburban is still out front at 4:00 this afternoon, I’ll mail your remains to your family.”
So yes. Y’all are getting bullet points tonight because now I’m starting to have some fantasies that involve sleeping in my bed, away from the circling baby lions. And when I have fantasies about pulling the covers up to my chin and falling asleep, I have a hard time writing and tying coherent sentences together to form paragraphs that could earn a passing grade in a junior high writing class.
1. I am doing my spring soccer unit in my PE classes right now, which the kids love. At the moment, I’m on the very top of everyone’s Favorite Teacher list, because we just finished a spree of dodgeball games (lots of different versions of the dodgeball game), and we moved right into soccer. This afternoon, we played mini soccer games of three-on-three. Each team of three played for 90 seconds. If they scored a goal in that amount of time, they were allowed to stay on the field to take on the next opponent. If no one scored before the time ran out, both teams rotated out, and two new teams came in and faced off with one another.
In my first grade PE class, I have the tiniest little fellow you’ll ever meet. My nephew K, who is in preschool, is bigger than this first grader. I think it’s safe to say that this little tyke probably still wears size 4T jeans and hasn’t seen the scale hit 35 pounds yet. And this afternoon, during PE, he scored a goal during his 90 seconds on the field! The entire first grade class erupted into shouts of joy, as everyone jumped all over the gym, because Tiny J had just taken a shot, and he’d come away victorious. His grin melted my heart as he looked up at me and said, “Did you see that? I made a goal! My first goal! I thought I’d be a man with a mustache before I ever made a soccer goal by myself!”
And that, people, is why I love PE so much. It’s my job to help the little guys all get a soccer goal behind their names before their mustaches grow in.
2. I woke up at 1:00 this morning, and I had obviously been sleeping on my shoulder plum wrong, because it felt like Barbie’s shoulder does, when the mean-hearted neighbor boy rips her arm off.
And then, because I actually sat up in bed and rubbed my shoulder a bit, making sure that the entire arm was still connected, and that I wasn’t having the pain due to the complete loss of a limb, Cat 2 woke up. And she looked at me through the darkened room, from her spot at the foot of our bed. I snapped my fingers and pointed my right index finger down, which meant, “Go back to sleep right now! Lay back down on your special blanket RIGHT THIS SECOND, before I rip YOUR arm off your body!”
Cat 2 didn’t listen to me. She ignored my sign language, and she got up. And she washed her front paws in the communal water dish. And she drug some papers out of the boy’s backpack, which had been left open on the floor by the dining room table. She then spent a substantial amount of time hauling papers around our house, until I was forced to get out of bed and throw pillows with my good arm.
My good arm, which was my LEFT arm.
It saddens me to say that every pillow I threw missed its target. However, I have come to a point in my life where I think it’s time for Cat 2 to become an OUTDOOR kitty, which means that she’ll become a meal for another animal in the first three hours that she’s out there.
And THAT means that I’ll be able to sleep at night.
3. My friend Carrie, who lives in Thriving Metropolis (which is also known as HOME OF THE COLORADO AVALANCHE, BABY!), told me yesterday that if I had an iPhone, I could download the People magazine app, and I could stalk the royal wedding plans on a regular basis.
I. Had. No. Idea.
Which is why I am now coveting the iPhone, because I AM the targeted marketing audience for glossy magazine coverage of the upcoming nuptials.
The other reason that I’ve fallen for the iPhone is because of the game Angry Birds. Hubs introduced it to me on his iPad 2 last week, and I don’t know what it is about shooting little birds out of a slingshot to try to knock tiny pigs out of towers, but I was hooked. Like a fish. That kind of game is right up my alley, because it involves very little gray matter, and I don’t have to try to decide whether three kings and a two beat four jacks or not. (It’s times like those when I simply yell out, “Go fish!” or even “Uno!” and fold.)
4. Hubs and I still have no new confirmed show to watch on Netflix in the evenings. Oh, we’ve had several suggestions. One of my friends told me, “You have GOT to watch Friday Night Lights! It’s wonderful! You’ll love it, and love it huge. And Hubs will love all the football in it.” When I made this announcement to Hubs, he looked at me and said, “I already sit in a coma-like trance through Glee every week with you; what I DON’T NEED in my life right now is another high school, made-for-TV drama that could be featured as an after-school special. I’d rather shove a hot poker in my ear. Twice.”
Well then. There may have been a little drama with THAT declaration.
For the record, Hubs adores Sue Sylvester, so he exaggerated a bit with the coma-like trance phrase.
I still may try Friday Night Lights out, and I’ve already mentally recruited my sofa-mate who will share the tub of popcorn with me through the first season’s DVDs. Amy M. will be game. (Did you get that little pun? It’s a football show? And I said game?!) Amy M. is my go-to girl for all high school dramas, whether they’re on the big screen or the little screen. It keeps us young, and we both sob like sophomores together when the shows get sad. Hubs simply shakes his head at us, because his idea of quality entertainment on the screen involves anything that explodes, Glenn Beck, The Big Bang Theory, and speculations on Sasquatch, as reported with accompanying blurry film footage, on the History Channel.
5. Speaking of Sasquatch (which we seem to do a lot of around here, because, sadly, we are THAT family), we were bopping along the road in the Suburban this last weekend, when the boy asked from his position in the backseat, “Hey, Dad? What would you do if you were driving on a country road at night, with a gun in your truck, and Sasquatch crossed the road in front of your headlights? Would you shoot him, Dad?”
Without even pausing for speculation of any kind, Hubs replied, “Yes. And then I’d haul his stinking carcass to a taxidermist, so that I could have his head mounted to hang above our fireplace.”
This is where I piped in and announced, “And THAT violates section 7432, article 6 of the prenuptial agreement contract, which clearly states, in Times New Roman font, size 12, ‘There shall be no heads and/or bodies and/or horns or antlers or skulls or femurs of any kind either hung or placed on display in the Jedi Manor ever.’ And I think it goes without saying that this includes the heads of Sasquatch AND the Abominable Snowman.”
That’s when Hubs responded by saying something that sounded like he’d just hang his Yeti mount in THE GARAGE, because section 8499, article 19 of the prenuptial agreement contract states that the garage has never been, nor ever will be, considered PART OF THE HOUSE, and that no curtains or window treatments of any kind shall ever be hung inside the garage, and that Hubs will reign as King Supreme in that quadrant, and, as King Supreme, he can hang whatever he wants to on the garage walls, including the heads of Sasquatch, the Abominable Snowman AND any giant squids that he and the boy catch while they’re fishing.
Feel free to lift our little family up in prayer, people.
6. Last night, when I went to bed, I realized that the little lamp on my bedside table had been turned on, the blinds had already been pulled, the book that I’m currently reading was laid nicely on my pillow, and right there, on the quilt, was a little orange piece of paper that had been folded over so that it stood up on its own. And on that little piece of folded paper was this message:
Mom, I love you really much.
And on Hubs’ side of the bed, the iPad 2 was set nicely on the pillow, and HIS bedside lamp was on, and there was another piece of orange paper which read:
Dad, you rock!
Have I ever mentioned how much I adore that boy of ours? He’s a good egg. And he’s paid for, so I think we’ll keep him. Besides, he makes my heart glow.
7. And speaking of the iPad 2, I just want to throw it out there and say this: Besides Angry Birds, I’m not loving it, because we (and by we, I mean Hubs) use it as a stereo that plays old trucking songs.
All. Of. The. Time.
Just this morning, I had to listen to C.W. McCall’s “Convoy” and “Old Home, Filler-Up an Keep-on-a-Truckin’ Cafe.” Those two songs were followed up by Roger Miller’s “You Can’t Rollerskate in a Buffalo Herd,” and Johnny Paycheck’s rousing rendition of “Colorado Kool-Aid.”
Y’all have just NO IDEA how being serenaded like this completes my mornings. I told Hubs this morning, “These are such OLD MAN songs. They’re a far cry from the boy I used to know, who had the entire Ratt Musical Library on CD.”
Hubs simply grinned and said, “Mercy sakes alive! Looks like we got us a convoy!”
It never occurred to me to write up a clause in the prenuptial agreements stating that old trucking songs would be outlawed at all times in the Jedi Manor. Clearly, I have no one to blame here but myself.
8. The following pictures were taken tonight. They are pictures of the boy, but they are not pictures of either Cat 1 OR Cat 2.
Cat 3, whose nickname is NO, SON, HE CANNOT STAY HERE, AND I DON’T CARE HOW ATTACHED YOU’VE GOTTEN TO HIM IN THE LAST 45 MINUTES, BUT I’M SURE HE HAS A FAMILY SOMEWHERE AND YES! I AM GOING TO SEND HIM WITH THE LADY FROM ANIMAL CONTROL.
The boy discovered a howling teenager cat beneath our deck this evening. Although he was INCREDIBLY FRIENDLY AND LOVING, he was half-starved and ate a bowl of cat food which the boy offered to him so fast, he nearly choked. The boy fell in love instantly, because this young cat adored sitting in his lap, while Cats 1 and 2 do not. The boy wanted to keep Cat 3, regardless of his nickname, which I kept repeating for the boy’s benefit.
I spent fifteen minutes searching the phone book for Animal Control’s phone number, and I came up blank. It is not listed under the A’s, for Animal Control. So I called our friend, Brian, Cop Extraordinaire. I knew that Brian, who was out on his beat, would have the phone number I was looking for. Unfortunately, Brian didn’t answer his cell phone, so I hung up, without leaving a message. And then another five minutes’ worth of searching the phone book provided me with the number for the local dog and cat shelter, and the nice woman there gave me Animal Control’s number.
The woman who answered at Animal Control told me she’d be at our house in thirty minutes to pick Cat 3 (also known as NO, SON, HE CANNOT STAY HERE) up. This is how our phone conversation went:
A.C. Woman: “I’ll be there in 30 minutes. Will I need to re-catch the cat when I arrive, or do you have it caught now?”
Me: “Oh, we have him caught now. My son is playing with him in the yard. Hey, listen. Should I bring him inside my house? You know, so he doesn’t get away before you get here? Because what if he gets away before you get here, and then we have to spend some time trying to catch him, only we PLUM DON’T catch him, and then he’s wandering and lost and out on the streets tonight, and wouldn’t it be easier if I just brought him inside of my house until then? But I know that this would freak Cats 1 and 2 out, because they don’t like stranger cats, and I just don’t know what to do. What SHOULD I do? Should I bring this cat inside? Do YOU think I should bring this cat inside, knowing that Cat 1 will pull her Texas Chainsaw Massacre act out and try to devour Cat 3?”
A.C. Woman: (After a lengthy pause, in which she tried to decide if she should bring a psychologist along when she came to our house, for ME.) “Ma’am, you can do whatever you’re comfortable doing.”
Cat 3 (also known as NO, SON, HE CANNOT STAY HERE) remained outside, while the boy played with him in the yard.
And my darling friend, Sarah (Cop Extraordinaire’s Wife), called back and said, “Hey, I saw you called.” And I went on and on about how I was just calling Brian to get a phone number, but how I’d found the phone number, and how I’d plum rattled on UNINTELLIGENTLY to the woman from Animal Control, and how I ALWAYS rattle on when I’m stressed out, and blam! Sarah and I burst out laughing, and we laughed so hard I almost dribbled in my drawers! We laughed and we laughed, until I had to actually sit down to recover.
And then Sarah struck on a brilliant plan, as she said, “Listen! When the gal arrives to collect the cat, give her Cats 1 and 2 and KEEP Cat 3!”
Oh, people! You don’t know the tightrope I walked trying to tell myself how wrong this would be! I rehearsed the conversation repeatedly with Sarah. We practiced the story until it was perfect. I would tell the Animal Control woman, “I know I told you that we had a black and white teenager cat, but I was so wrong! We actually have this fourteen-pound, slightly autistic gray cat, who stares at walls and doesn’t sleep through the nights yet, and this little eight-pounder, who has evil in her heart, but who sleeps. And sleeps. And sleeps. That little black and white fellow is actually OUR cat. He’s friendly. We only have friendly, NORMAL cats around here. That’s why we called you to come get these other two bits of fluff, which just SHOWED UP ON OUR DOORSTEP.”
In the end, Cat 3 went to the pound, where he will be reunited with his family of people, and the boy sobbed uncontrollably and told me that he loved that cat. I assured the boy that Cat 3 has a family somewhere who is missing him dreadfully tonight.
I’m sure that his family is NORMAL, too. I’m sure no one in Cat 3’s family of people listens to old trucker songs, and I’m sure that conversations involving words like Sasquatch and taxidermist never come up at their house.
In hindsight, I should have gone WITH Cat 3, and tried my luck at having his family adopt me.
9. Happy Wednesday night, people.