Notebook Purge: a Big Mess o’ Random Thoughts

legroomLast night we were watching strangers on TV cooking complicated meals under intense manufactured pressure, when Toney’s phone rang. She answered, listened for a few seconds, and the color drained from her face.

Needless to say, this almost caused the floor of my ass to fall out. Did somebody die? Had there been an accident?? Whatever it was, it wasn’t good. My wife’s reaction confirmed this.

“Yes, he’s here. Just a moment,” she said, and handed me the phone.

“It’s somebody from Shippensburg,” she whispered, a look of deepening concern taking hold. Shippensburg is where our oldest boy is going to school. It felt like I suddenly had a charley horse in my heart.

“Hello?” I said, bracing for something horrible. Hopefully he’d only been arrested, and not hurt. Please God, just let it be a drunk and disorderly…

Yeah, they were fundraising. They wanted a $200 donation — even more money, and after 8 pm on a Sunday night. It had nothing to do with the boy, nothing whatsoever. Wow! Those assholes nearly sent us into cardiac arrest.

The thing about it? I was so relieved it wasn’t something bad, I didn’t even get angry until after the call had ended. I was actually nice to the guy! Wotta rip-off. I’m sure there will be other opportunities. Right?

Speaking of Shippensburg, I didn’t tell you guys about my crazy-ass Labor Day weekend, did I?

Well, on Friday night I worked until about 2:00 a.m., and drove directly to the school to pick up the boy. He was supposed to set his alarm for 3:30, and be up and ready when I arrived around 4:00. Ha! I called his cell phone about seven times, and got no answer.

I’d started calling about ten miles out, and the last four or so calls came from the parking lot outside his dorm. Grrr… I was tired and annoyed, and he was apparently up there snoozing away.

Finally, he answered, and said he’d be right down. Twenty minutes later(!) he came dragging out with an enormous sack of dirty laundry. “Jesus!” I shouted. “I don’t think I even own that many clothes.” It completely filled the trunk of my car.

“I need to go back in, and get a few more things,” he mumbled. I hadn’t seen him in a few weeks, and was trying to be nice. But it was a struggle.

He went up for another twenty minutes, and I was pacing around the parking lot, grinding my teeth and muttering obscenities. Wotta fiasco: a predictable fiasco.

We didn’t get back to our house until 7:30. I’d been up the entire previous day, and had also worked more than ten hours. So, I cranked up the air conditioner, allowed my enormous jeans to fall to the floor, and crawled into bed.

Four hours later… I was wide awake. I don’t know why, but I couldn’t sleep anymore than that. So, I got up and stumbled through the rest of the day like a zombie. I felt really weird, and don’t remember much of it.

That night Toney woke me up around 9:00, and told me I should just go to bed. I’d fallen asleep watching TV. So, I dragged my ass upstairs, and proceeded to sleep for 13 hours. I went to bed at 9:00, and got up at 10:00 the next morning.

Man, I felt great all day Sunday. I was firing on all cylinders, and annoying everyone with my ceaseless “observations.” It was Jeff, undiluted.

But I had to be at work on Monday at 5 am. And you can probably guess what happened… I couldn’t sleep worth a shit. I might have gotten two hours, and was back to full-zombie again.

So, in three nights I slept 4 hours, 13 hours, and 2 hours. It’s not really the way it’s supposed to work is it?

A couple of weeks ago we bought one of these contraptions. We’d been talking about it, off and on, for many months, and finally pulled the trigger.

I was skeptical, of course, but we’re actually using it. Today, for instance, I filled it halfway with spinach, added a cut-up nectarine, and some berries. It was freaking good, and I’m full. It’s taken the place of lunch meat, and those salt-lick frozen meals. Or, when I’m really running late… the Burger King drive-through.

Whoever designed it, did it right. It’s super-easy to use, and — more importantly — clean. Usually it’s the cleaning part that makes you say fukkit. But with this thing you just have to rinse it under hot water. It couldn’t be easier. And it’s fun experimenting with different ingredients, trying to get the perfect combination.

I think we’re on Week 3, and still using it. Do you have any experience with this kind of thing? I was convinced we’d mess around with it for a week or two, put it on a shelf, and never speak of it again. But, it’s looking like it might have legs. So far, anyway. We’ll see how it goes.

Finally, on Saturday the younger boy and I went to Subway for lunch (I never said I was perfect), and started working on a game we dubbed GameStop Bingo.

There’s a GameStop store next door to the home of the $7 lettuce sandwich, and we were watching the types of people who came and went — and tried to come up with enough stereotypical gamer attributes to fill a bingo card. But it got cut short, and now I need your help with it.

The ones from Saturday that I remember: fedora, neck beard (no facial hair, just neck hair), visible Transformers logo, D-cup man tits… It seems like there were others, but I’m having trouble recalling them. Please help me fill the rest of the card, if you’re so inclined.

And I’ll see you guys again next time.

Have a great day!

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  1. The picture with todays post makes me grind my teeth.

  2. We have a guy here at work who always has a questionable looking tumbler of green goo on his desk. The thought of drinking ground up veggies and fruit doesn’t really do much for me, cyclonic action or not.

    But, enjoy, it has to be better for you than a number 1, hold the pickles.

  3. parent buying their 8 year old kid adult games like call of duty and grand theft auto.

  4. Guy with a ponytail

  5. Broney…

  6. Zits
    Greasy hair
    Inexplicable good-looking kid (that one’d be mine, naturally)
    Superhero tee

    Good grief on the college thing. That is some uncool chit.

  7. Chuck in Belpre says

    Just don’t fall for the bullshit hype and try kale in that thing. It will make you want to do a full-on colon cleanse. Nasty stuff.

  8. Lew in Bama says

    Never been inside a Game Stop, so I cannot speak from actual experience. BUT, I can make a pretty educated guess of the types seen frequenting such an establishment:
    cheeto fingers
    dirty sweat-pants dude
    shower once-a-week kid
    pizza on speed dial guy
    moms basement ranger
    king of the futon
    Pink hair gamer-chick
    Sheldons mom (because shes tired of sitting in the car waiting for him)
    That’s all I got.

  9. Black horned glasses a la Roy orbison.

  10. Gauges or as I like to think of them “ridiculously giant holes in one’s ear that will require surgery to fix later in life.”

  11. johnthebasket says

    It’s possible I’m confused about the question. I thought most guys and well over half the girls under 25 played computer/network based video games.

    I see two of my nephews and a niece most weekends, and the guys can play for hours on end. They both look pretty normal and have normal jobs. The niece plays less often, and is active in sports and music.

    Like Lew, I’ve never been in a Gamestop store. I swear I thought people bought software over the Web these days. Why do they need a store?

    Perhaps you can infer that I know little about video gaming, although I had a romp with Galaga arcade during the Reagan administration. Turns out it was both less expensive and more functional than the Star Wars missile defense system. Go figure.


  12. Scott Ruisch says

    Neon Pastel Tee Shirt
    Skinny Jeans
    Braces caked with food
    Hipster Page-boy haircut
    Ball cap w/ flat brim

    I could be wrong about a lot o

  13. Best damn thing we ever bought on a whim is the black and decker sandwich maker. It works great and the daughter loves it because you are making your very own mcmuffin. We have thrown in weird ingredients and it doesn’t let us down.

  14. Having worked rotating 12 hr shifts for the last 17 years I’ve had some of those odd sleep stretches, especially during a 24 hour turn around from days to nights. Much more now that I’m over 50 than in the early years.

    As for GameStop, In the area I live I always think of Skinny Pete and Badger.

  15. -13 year old who looks 23
    -23 year old there with parents
    -customer hanging out acting like he works there
    -girl (this will go in the free square)
    -guy carrying a man purse
    -carrying a giant soda
    -white guy with really red flesh
    -old guy talking about how games used to be better
    -old woman looking for the nail place
    -tabletop gamer in the wrong place
    -small children touching everything while long lost gamer dude longs for a past life

  16. I went into a Game Stop once, looking for board games for my g-children for Christmas. I was so confused that I just left and asked someone later what happened. Okay, you can laugh.

    Jeff, get from CVS melatonin with B6. I take one or two. You will probably need two mg. It works like a charm. Try not to eat for a while before you take it so it will get into your system sooner. I sleep well with no hangover. I have done the same thing you did! It is so annoying.

  17. I sympathize with your sleep irregularity. As a Man in Dark Blue, I’ve worked day shift, evening shift and midnights. The shifts were four days on, two off, then start all over again.
    For me, midnights was the worst. My first day off was consumed by trying to catch up on sleep. Friends and family with “normal” jobs don’t seem to understand how crummy you can feel due to no sleep.

  18. Skippy in WV says

    One Herman Munster shoe
    Neck brace with NASCAR sticker
    Seeping wound
    Mouth breather
    Nicotine stains