Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Karmic Wheels Go 'Round and 'Round

The goals set out for today:

1) Finish a blog entry on this book about how creativity works that my friend gave me for my birthday. I'm about halfway through the book, plan to finish it during my mother's screening outpatient procedure tomorrow, but had some ideas and thoughts streaming from what I've already read. (Started writing it at 5am and touted how the book theorizes that creatives do their best work "while half asleep," early in the morning, which is largely true for me, but it was too much info to finish that blog before the other goals of the day.)

2) Therapy. (Schlep to Swedish Covenant. Talked about 7,700 word thank-you reply I wrote in response to about a 200-word thank you email I received, which I have no plans on sharing with the thank-ee who thanked me. Instead, I made him a someecard:)

3) Stop at Jewel-Osco, to buy some core groceries and attempt to pick up my anxiety medication, which, naturally, wasn't ready, which only exacerbated my anxiety, but whatever. It's not like I'm THAT worried that for some reason, I can't get a secured connection on Facebook, and that my blog is now being followed by people at Dartmouth, Kent State ("Four dead in O-H-I-O!") and some obscure organization in Israel. Hey, I was the one who invited the CIA to tap my phone. I should think there are other people in this world (2 people in particular) who would be immediately MORE interested in some of my cell phone conversations than the Central Intelligence Agency. 

4) Get my eyeglasses fixed. The nose piece on one side came out, though it fell out right in front of my face onto my laptop. (Trip to LensCrafters.) Included unplanned swing into Trader Joe's for something to make for dinner tomorrow, my night to cook. Gee, I hope my mom likes tamales and a lentil salad after her procedure! And Jesus. Does EVERY Park Ridgean in Trader Joe's talk on her cell with one hand while pushing the cart with the other? Not me, baby. MOVE IT. (I'm kicking myself for not having bought pomegranate seeds.)

5) Impromptu, I've-had-enough-of-this-dust car wash. Drove to the car wash the whole way behind an old man in a Mercury Sable who had a US Route 66 sticker on the back of his car ("I've been everywhere, man...") as well as a baseball cap collection in his rear window. Driving in a 20 mph zone that's kind of a speed trap, but you can usually go 25-30 mph with no gruff from the fuzz, if they're around. I can provide empirical data that suggests that old men in cars with their rear windows adorned with baseball caps, on average, tend to drive 10-15 mph BELOW the posted speed limit. (Yes, he was doing 15, though I wasn't directly on his fender over it...)

6) After coming home for a breather, it was time to pick Luke up from school. I was jamming to the new Harrison CD, again, which I Tweeted, as I Tweet my daily "Schoolhouse Rock" entries as to what I'm listening to while I'm waiting for Luke. (I was listening to "Woman Don't You Cry For Me.") I hypothesized the following on Facebook the moment I saw my son loitering at the bike rack with his posse: "I wonder what Luke would do if I went up to the bike rack and made him hold my hand through the parking lot? I believe he would not-so-politely, yet contextually correctly tell me to FUCK OFF." 

Knowing my mom had asked us to stop at Walgreens after school, I grew impatient of Luke's loitering and backed my car up so that it was blatantly obvious that I was THERE whereupon I FINALLY got his attention and he came over. "What took you so long?" I asked. "I was untangling my earbuds," he said. "For 10 minutes?" I replied. "We have to go to Walgreens for Grandma. And you have to carry a case of water," I informed Luke. "Can I get an AP?" he asked me. "What's that?" "An Arnold Palmer," Luke said. "Sure." (I had thoughtfully packed a fresh bottle of H20 for him en route to pick him up at school, which had warmed up by the time he got his ass to the car.)

7) Go to Walgreens for my mom's Rx, a case of H20, 2 Arnold Palmers, cocoa-roasted almonds (which ended up being a handful for me for lunch at 3:30pm), and 2 cans of black olives for which my mom had a 99 cent each coupon, that if I DID NOT procure, would only serve to reinforce what an utter failure I am as an adult.

Deafened in the parking lot by an SUV in the handicapped spot in which an old man sat in the passenger front seat. The car alarm was blaring at full blast. Luke and I were like, "There's a guy. In the car. Can't he make that STOP?" Soon thereafter, his companion/daughter/whomever came out and bitched at him, "DID YOU TOUCH SOMETHING?" as Luke and I slowly walked towards the store, anxious to get the drama. I thought to myself, "Yes, I pressed the SEAT EJECT button. And it FAILED."

Do you think we could find the damn olives? My mom had asked me, "Do you know where the groceries are in Walgreens?" to which I said, "Yes." "Where the canned food is?" she asked. "Yes." After perusing the grocery aisles, end caps and stumbling across corned beef hash, no, I still couldn't find the God-forsaken black olives. I found green olives in a jar. The black olive partition seemed to be empty. An elderly couple, coupon in hand, was also looking for the black olives, not finding them. "I guess they're all out," I told them. They departed the aisle and for some ungodly reason, I got down on my hands and knees and found 4 cans left WAAAAAAY back on the shelf. I grabbed 2 and put them in our cart. "We should go tell those people," Luke said, being the bearer of a grander moral compass than I. "Yeah, I guess we should," I said. They hadn't gotten very far, so we ecstatically told them where the olives were and proceeded to checkout, where yes, I agreed with the checkout clerk that the cocoa roasted almonds were indeed quite good, and Luke coerced me into buying him gum. I told Luke, "Well, looks like we did OUR good deed for the day, now let's get the hell out of here!" so we went home. 

Once home and settled, Luke babbling about, of all things, asking a GIRL OUT before the end of the school year since she's going to another school next year (EXCUSE ME? HE CAN DATE AND *I* CAN'T??), I called Osco back to find out if my damn anxiety meds were fucking ready already, and they were. So back into the car I went, sans Luke, who by then had stripped down to boxers and was poised with his Arnold Palmer, playing XBox. 

8) I'm not an asshole driver. Yes, I am an impatient driver, but I exhibit no road rage (other than to vocally call people "douchebags" as I'm driving,) routinely drive over the speed limit and thus far, knock wood, the only moving violation I ever received was driving over a double yellow line into a left-turn-only lane, with a Park Ridge cop right behind me during rush hour once. (I did online traffic safety school and it was expunged from my record, and at least he was kind enough not to cite me for my cracked/ sort-of-broken taillight (DUI, whacked my backside into a tree trunk), my missing front plate (no front bumper, which flew off going 65 mph on the tollway with Luke en route to the zoo from back in the day...my car has....lots of scars of my past. Craig calls it "The Rolling Deathtrap" for a reason. I can't park. I am almost legally blind in my left eye without glasses. I have very poor depth perception. And zero spatial orientation skills. And that's all sober!) I abhor people who don't use their turn signals, stay in the slow lane on the expressway but go 70 if I can, race through yellow lights...otherwise, I'm not a douchebag like so many other drivers seem to be around me. 

After parking (decently) at Osco to get my Rx, a woman parked in the handicapped section of the lot in front of the store called out "HELP ME! HELP ME! CAN YOU HELP ME?" and being the superhero I am, in the middle of having spent the day paralyzed with anxiety and burned out from the olive experience, walked up to her and just said "What." "I'm handicapped!" she said. "I see that!" I told her, albeit sarcastically. "I need a motor cart! I can't get out of my car! I can't walk around the store! Can you get me a motorized cart?" she begged. Sighing, I said yes, I would, while wondering to myself if she's indeed SO handicapped, how the fuck she got into her car and drove to the store alone in the first place. Feeling slightly chumped, I located a cart clerk dude and told HIM her sob story, where she was parked, and meandered to the pharmacy. Elderly Good Deed of the Day #2, accomplished, begrudgingly, but you know the Golden Rule and all that jazz. 

Aggravated at the line and not noticing the customers in front of me, I was Tweeting my dribbles and my friend Amy Tweeted me back that I was spending way too much time in drug stores. Twas ever thus. The woman in front of me, who was old, short and had dark hair, announced her name in a trademark way that I shall never forget, for she was one of my patients at Balderdash & Verities. (She's a complete, utter pain in the ass, by the way.) Knowing her nuances, when the pharmacy tech rang her Rx up, and it totaled $3.04, it didn't surprise me that not only did she wish to pay by check, she insisted on handwriting the check instead of letting the register print it out. Nor did it surprise me that she didn't have or know how to use a debit or credit card for a more expeditious checkout experience. Nor did it surprise me that she asked three times what the total amount was. Just as it didn't surprise me that she fucked up the computer signature system you have to sign-off on to get your Rx. "I'll get this right sometime in the next 20 years, God willing!" she said apologetically to the pharmacy tech, who knows me, had my Rx queued up already and raised her eyebrow, as I did mine, in a mutual "Lady, your bones will be dust in 20 years, but that's immaterial." Have a nice day.

Drove home to the tunes on the rest of the new Harrison disc, with little douchebaggery to complain about. Accidentally bumped the light pole where I park in the alley of the townhomes, but that's pretty typical Annie driving behavior and The Rolling Deathtrap can withstand a 1 mph ding. 

The last song that was playing was George's first-take demo of "Run of the Mill," which ended up on "All Things Must Pass." A song my male best friend put on a CD for me when he was really, really pissed at me, that I put on my thank-you-note-emailing friend's birthday CD this year, with an annotation (most of the CD's I give him come with annotations as to why I chose each song...that's how I roll, and he knows that) that I hoped I never would have to send him "Run of the Mill" out of anger. I liked the softer, acoustic demo version, as opposed to the Phil Spector-produced Wall of Sound production the final piece became, which is far more dramatic and thus more typical of my best male friend when he's trying to prove a point or GET AT ME emotionally. The demo isn't as bitter or forceful; rather, it's quite beautiful. It's about choosing to be friends with someone and the responsibilities that are carried with friendship. Sort of like the concept of propinquity, which was the title of the compilation I made for my friend, which is one of the core principles of why we're friends, which I had to explain as a sociological law to his spouse at my birthday party. He'll get the someecard at whatever time he decides to check his email after he comes back from a 2-week vacation in a 3rd world country and catches up on life. Note that while I did indeed send him "Run of the Mill," I did not wish upon he or his family amoebic dysentery from consuming the drinking water. I'm not a douchebag, after all, and geez, after helping all the elderly of the community today, I'm fairly certain my karmic echelon has raised high enough such that I shan't be reincarnated as, say, a roach. :)

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