Sunday, August 15, 2010

Cruise - 1st Formal Night and Satan's Hairbrush

I am not sure what we did all day. It is kind of a blur.

I know we ate. It's a cruise and a full day at sea. Duh. What else is a fat chick gonna do?

Breakfast was in the dining room (for portion control) due to the stellar advice of my friend, Greg. Lunch was somewhere I can't remember. But I kept myself tightly leashed for the first 2 or 3 days. 

Then I decided I did not care so much. ::grin:: But we did keep going for breakfast in the dining room 'cause the food was generally better and we did not stuff ourselves before going into ports.
Hubby and I got dressed in very casual clothes and went up to the spa deck.
Hold on to your shorts….

We went to the gym and worked out…A FULL BODY workout! Upper, Lower and Abs were worked…then cardio! The only reason we did not do a full hour on the stationary bikes was because Hubby saw a sign that requested guests to limit it to a half hour since people had to wait for the machines.
Hubby got a calf cramp after 20 minutes on the bike but I did my full half hour. We were in the gym at least 2 hours. It was probably closer to 3. Then we went to the whirlpool which was not hot so I did not stay in it very long.

I hurt for the rest of the week. But we did it! We said we would do it again on the next day at sea, but I still hurt a whole lot. So, we skipped it.
That was most of the day.

Now it was time to shower and primp for dinner. It was the 1st formal night so I knew I would want extra time to get ready. I scheduled a full 3 hours to get ready.

Thank goodness I did.

Remember back in the 1st story where I said the hair gel and the hairbrush would be important? We are to that point.

I showered. No biggie. I am a big girl and do not tend to flush myself down the drain.
I brushed my teeth. No biggie. I know body parts and don't poke myself in the eye with the tooth brush.
I used deodorant. No biggie. I had thought to buy the "invisible" kind that won't mark up my clothes.
I used perfume. No biggie. I am considerate and dab it on lightly & carefully rather than bathe in it.

I knew better than to do my makeup before hair. I was going to use a hair dryer for the 1st time in a very long time and I knew it might make me hot and therefore, sweat a little. I do not wish to sweat my foundation off so do hair first.
Dayum! I am brilliant at this for being a bigtime tomboy and totally inexperienced with this crap!

Now, I had paid attention at the hairdresser's to see the motions she made during the styling process. I remembered what she did, which is pretty amazing for me 4 days later.
I sprayed on the hair stuff. I had double and triple checked that this was not a strong hold type gel. Just a soft "now I want you to keep this type of style in a gentle fashion".
I brushed it through with my everyday brush to ensure that it was all through my hair. I was good to go w/the hairdryer.

I picked up the "big huge could be used as a dildo for an elephant perfectly round" hairbrush that will from here be known as SH (Satan's Hairbrush). In the other hand I picked up the hair dryer.

My hairdresser had cut a good 6 inches off my hair so it should be even easier to work with now. Please note the word "should".

I sectioned my hair into three sections from top to bottom as my hairdresser had done. I started with the bottom section.

I took SH and brushed through the bottom section. I went through again stopping before leaving the end of the hair and wound SH back up the hair folding "under". I turned on the hairdryer and focused it on the wound hair for no more than 30 or 60 seconds moving it slightly back and forth so the hair would not burn.

Satisfied that the hair had enough on the pass, I turned the hair dryer off and set it down. I unwound SH from my hair.

Let me rephrase that in a more correct manner.

I TRIED to unwind SH from my hair. It would not budge.
I pulled a little harder remembering to gently go back and forth with the unwinding motion.

Hubby looked up when he heard the little squeak of pain and huff of "I am starting to get pissed off 'cause I am figuring out that I have likely done something stupid and there is no one to blame but myself…but I will use anyone nearby if possible".

I tried to take a deep breath and calm myself and made another attempt to remove SH. Hubby started to look a little alarmed when he saw my face in the mirror. He knows that look. He is not a completely stupid man. He is actually fairly smart when it comes to self-preservation. He saw me trying to do something and did not like what he was seeing. I tried again.

There could have been a fucking tidal wave of "Poseidon Adventure" proportions and people could have anchored their lifelines to SH and kept themselves alive for as long as my hair follicles remained intact.

At this point, Hubby knew it was a life or death decision. He actually decided on bravery. I would have been proud, if I was not so angry at the time.

"Honey, would you like some help?"

"Yes, please. I cannot get this fucking brush out of my hair. I did everything Christie did and it is not working."

All he said was, "Wow".

"Wow" was NOT what I wanted to hear. I spoke through clenched teeth.

"Honey, if you cannot get that thing out of my hair get me scissors. And then I will be spending a lot of money in the spa for them to salvage what they can of my hair."

Hubby then went and got the nail clippers. He sought out and clipped every bristle of SH that was imprisoning my hair. I was finally free. The whole process took 30-45 minutes. Then I was able to start all over on my hair.

Turns out my hairdresser had used an all SOFT bristle brush. I had purchased a mix of long soft bristle like she had….but it had short bristles in it that were hard unforgiving plastic.

And for proof that is was Satan's Hairbrush and was possessed...

I threw SH away EVERY day! It reappeared on our vanity every afternoon!

Okay, okay….so it was our room steward who was fishing it out of the trash thinking it was accidentally being thrown away…but still, I say the damned thing was possessed!


 Spring Break on a Cruise

Lessons learned on the cruise:
  1. Young college students, while pretty/hot/studly/slutty/young/loose/etc, can also be DAMNED entertaining!
  2. There is no discrimination among the young and drunk when it comes to making an ass of yourself. Foolishness is definitely an EOE.
  3. Drinking to excess is considered a sport among the young and competition is fierce
  4. Stupidity is to be admired in your roaring 20's and is a desirable breeding quality
  5. Rick & I are old and devious
  6. We look old and harmless to the young, stupid and drunk
Imagine my heartbreak, dismay and fear when I saw the ship filled to capacity with young hard body college kids. Great…Now I would look like the whale that I am. Rick would be repulsed seeing me next to the blonde svelte teeny boppers. To his credit, he may have looked at them (well, he IS a man) but he looked and appreciated me too.

I finally relaxed and had a pretty good time and drank w/everybody else. We went to Key West and then on to Cozumel.

Pay attention folks. Cozumel is where drinking increases along with stupidity. Go figure.

They tell you to set your watches to "ship's time". That happens to be the time of wherever you sailed out of. It was Miami this time…Eastern Standard Time.

Enter Señor Frog's. Lots of college kids having fun. Lots of mommy & daddy money being spent. Lots of booze was consumed. Lots of stupidity ensues.

Señor Frog's is nice enough to put clocks on the wall and have their employees wear watches so you don't lose track of time. What time do you think they set it to? They are in Mexico. Cruise ships come from everywhere. Sure they find out what ship is rolling in that day and change their clock to match that ship's time, dumbass.

Rick & I had a couple of drinks and a good time watching the college kids get plastered. Then we took a taxi back to the pier, had a Corona at a small bar (where he taught me the saying of "Liquor and then beer, never fear") and then went back to the ship.

The ship was scheduled to sail at 11pm EST.

At 10:30pm we got a drink and went to the top deck and stood at the railing. We looked out over the pier and the incredibly blue water (lit up from lights under the ship).

At 10:40pm we heard the gangway being pulled into the ship (they ask that you be back on the ship ½ hour before sail time). We saw 2 guys running down the pier. We looked at each other and said, "I guess they didn't set their watches to ship's time". Then we were evil and giggled.

They got to the very back of the ship and no gangway appeared. One of the college guys dropped to his knees and all you heard screamed across the pier was, "OH JESUS!"

You will still hear Rick & I occasionally quote that young man. Then we will giggle.

You see, we have no doubt that they had not thought to bring their birth certificates/extra money/passports with them to Señor Frog's. So, they were stuck in Mexico with the clothes on their backs and no documentation and no extra money.

Now we saw 2 girls running down the pier. They would stop every so often to catch their breath. One would hit the other and they would run again. We giggled like the demons that we are when we saw that they were bawling. They were stuck in Mexico too.

We were just evil old codgers on the ship who not only had gotten back in time, but had brought extra money & documentation when we DID go out. *snicker*  Others standing at the railing looked at us funny that we were laughing at the plight of these "poor children".

Hey, if you are old enough to get drunk in Mexico and let some MC @ Señor Frog's blow CO2 up your skirt for kicks, then you are old enough to set your watch to ship's time or pay the consequences for being a dumbshit.

'Nuff said.

By the way…a lot of the old people at the railing ended up laughing with us.

PS – The way too nice people running the ship eventually let the idiots back on the ship. They just scared the beejeesus out of them.

PSS – Karma is gonna get me someday

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Drunken Fire Drill with Nazis

Drunken Fire Drill - Drunk is the only way to do those things
So after the drunken rambling phone call to Fizzy we hadt the stupid fire drill that is required before sailing (even though they conduct the fire drill while actually moving out of port).

Announcement comes over the PA System that we all need to go to our rooms, collect our life vests, put them on and "muster" at our designated stations.

Ever see a bunch of drunks try to figure out a life vest? Yes, a good percentage of the ship's population is drunk by this point. Life vest straps trailing the ground, drunks staggering around, multi-level stairways…disaster in the making. The really obnoxious drunks are actually trying to stomp on the trailing vest straps of unsuspecting victims. Rick had to put my vest on me. *snicker*

So we get to our muster station. We are standing in the back since we got there early (beaming as one of the "good kids"). It was actually nice to get there early since this meant we could lean against the wall behind us instead of actually having to stand on our own.

We met a couple next to us from PA or somewhere up there (remember, I was drunk…it's not like I am gonna remember this stuff). I do remember the woman had the little patches behind her ears and it dawned on me...prone to seasickness + drinking = I might want hubby in between me and her (I wasn't so drunk that I didn't think of THAT).

The PA couple was nice and the whole deck was having a grand ol' time just chatting and staying where we belonged until the freaking Drill Sergeant showed up.

For goodness sake, they say the same thing every cruise. "This is your muster station. This is the order of who will be allowed on the lifeboats first. This is how to put on your life vest. This is what you life vest has and can do. Ask a crew member if you cannot operate or put on your life vest correctly."

Like anything is going to be orderly if the ship is going down any way. People will be trampled. People will scream and be selfish. And I will personally eviscerate anyone who tries to separate me from my husband.

Well, Silly Sarge is doing the shhhhhh noise every so often. We are ever so politely ignoring him. All of a sudden he screams out, "If you are talking then you are not listening and cannot hear the instructions!"

Well holy crap on a cracker and freaking duh, Einstein. Got any other bulbs of wisdom for us ya earth smoking nitwit?

He did this pretty much at the end of the drill so we continued to ignore him and then it was time to leave and go back to our drinking. BONUS!

He was not overly thrilled with his group for the drill. I think we may have given him an aneurysm. *snicker*

C'est la vie. There was still alcohol on the Lido deck and a lounge chair with my name on it.  Life was still looking pretty darned good through my of them being full of rum and the other vodka, of course.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Caribbean Cruise – Day #1 (Pre-Fire Drill)

Cruise Time!


"Festival" = a popular cruise line with a similar name

Rick and I could not sleep of course, so we got up around 5am. We finished packing last minute stuff, made sure the kitties had food & water (enough until the kitty sitter would get there), loaded the car and shot out the door.

We had a nice breakfast, thought of stuff we had forgotten and shot off to Wal-Mart. Among other things, I picked up some kind of hair gel stuff to help straighten my hair and a brush like my stylist uses when straightening my hair at the salon (this becomes important later on…trust me).

We arrived at Port Canaveral with plenty of time to spare. We gave our luggage over to the porters, tipped them and joined the masses trying to board the ship. Things were moving along well enough that we were directed to the VIP check-in line and got right in.

We were on board the ship by 12pm. We were able to check out our stateroom and greet our room steward by 1pm.

We were on the Lido deck with our 1st drink by 2pm. I was on the Lido deck with my 2nd drink by 2:30pm. The "Festival" bartending staff pours heavy. I guess they subscribe to the theory that if you are going to pay THAT much for a drink, you should get a fair deal.Among at least 3 different alcohols in that drink there was Bacardi 151. I did not know that until after the 2nd drink.

I toasted my friends who could not be there and *I* was
quickly "toasted".

skip forward in the story

I realized a few things:
  1. I was finally on my cruise w/my hubby
  2. I was still in port
  3. I would not be on the computer for over a week
  4. I would not be talking w/my friends for that period of time
  5. I would miss the above mentioned friends
  6. I was intoxicated and therefore had some "liquid courage" to do things I normally would not
#7 is MOST important………and MOST dangerous

     7. I had a cell phone in my pocket

I called my friend Fizzy since I had her number. I rambled about things that I do not remember. I truly have no clue. I do remember the phrase, "I'm on the Lido deck and I am soooooo drunk!" I also know that I spoke freely about activities with my hubby (in our stateroom) just prior to the phone call.
Hubby AND Fizzy found all of this quite humorous. Hubby feels I should drink more often.

And away we go!

This next section will be my collection of tales from one of my cruise vacations. Remember, these are tales based on MY perspective. Names will be changed to protect the innocent....except my husband. He knows damn well he is not innocent.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Let my bad experience help you avoid tragedy

Go online, speak with your vet and talk to other dog lovers about Laryngeal Paralysis

Laryngeal paralysis

Basic Description: Laryngeal paralysis is a condition in where the nerves, muscles and cartilage that open and close the larynx, do not function properly. This can cause voice changes and/or difficulty with eating or breathing. This can happen to different types of animals. Dogs and horses are the most common mentioned in what I have read so far. The animal takes in air through the mouth or nose and passes it through the larynx, and into the trachea (windpipe). Normally, the laryngeal cartilages are pulled open during breathing.In laryngeal paralysis, these cartilages do not open and close properly, making it difficult for the animal to take in air normally.

This personal account is not meant to give information on any case where a human or animal, other than dogs, may have the same or similar condition.

I am sending out this email to raise awareness of a somewhat common condition with large dogs. Yet many, like me, have not heard of it even if they have been around dogs all their life. I never heard of this condition before yesterday. It can easily be mistaken for a heat exhaustion. This is potentially a fatal mistake.


Meet Jaegermeister, my dog. He is a yellow Labrador Retriever. No one ever guesses his correct age. He is now 12.5 years old. He has more energy than any "geriatric" canine should be able to claim. He has always been in excellent health so the Laryngeal Paralysis (LP)was not on my radar.

Recently, I have been walking w/Jaeger in the morning. My walking routine is a fast walk with light jogging for short distances. We were on our usual walk on August 13,2009. Had the ambient temperature been higher, things could have ended much differently.

We were making good time and I felt great about our progress with this new routine. Suddenly, Jaeger slowed down considerably. We had walked about a mile. His breathing became very labored. We were only about 1/4 mile from home so I tried inching him along at a very slow walk. Then, he started alternating between vomiting and defecating.Thank goodness I remembered my cell phone this time. I called my husband and asked him to pick us up.

When we got home, we took Jaeger to the side of the house and I started hosing him down. I thought it was most likely heat exhaustion. Jaeger was laying in the grass and his breathing was still loud and labored after 2 or 3 minutes of constant water application. I moved closer to his head to try and bring down his temperature (his ears were extremely hot). His eyes went glassy and he was not responding to my voice at all. He just laid there and struggled to breathe.

I moved closer and my heart started racing. I asked my husband for his flashlight and shined it into Jaeger's mouth. My fears were confirmed. His tongue had gone purplish/blue. I knew he was suffocating. It was likely 10-15 minutes since this started. My dog was slowly dying in front of me and I could not do anything about it.

We put him in the SUV and I sat in the back with him, encouraging him to breathe. We called our vet and the recording gave the number for the emergency clinic (if your vet doesn't have an emergency number on their after hours recording, ask them to add it). We put the A/C on as high as it would go and raced to the clinic. I was now at least a full 30 minutes since the beginning of Jaeger's trauma.

Jaeger had to be carried inside. He had no ability to move anymore.Thankfully, the vet and vet tech automatically had a suspicion about what was wrong. They put Jaeger on oxygen and gave him a shot of Acepromazine (a sedative). They updated me after about 10 minutes and said he had started to improve but they wanted to keep him on oxygen until they closed for the night (another 1.5 hours). They said his color was improving.

They educated me on the condition of Laryngeal Paralysis. I had never heard of it. I had questioned my dog's hoarse bark for vets raised any alarms about it. More recently, I had questioned his persistent cough and attempts to hack something up (an online story gave a great description of the sound..."HRRRAAACH"). No one ever mentioned this LP condition.

Had I known about the condition and what can set it off, I would have never taken Jaeger outside for "jogging". My ignorance almost cost me my dog. To some, "it's just a dog". To me, he is as close to a son as I will ever have.

Now that I know about the condition, it is my duty to educate as many as possible. Hopefully, future tragedies may be avoided through shared knowledge.

*********************My personal note to the caregivers in the world:

Thank you to those who, on a daily basis, give their time and effort to save the lives of people and their loved ones. Nurses, Doctors,EMTs, Firefighters, Police Officers...too many to mention them all....and yes, also including Veterinarians and Vet Techs. Our pets are our loved ones too.

And, in my opinion, a vet's job can in certain ways be more difficult. A pet cannot tell you exactly where it hurts, what they ate or what bit them. They depend on us to know something is wrong and take the necessary steps for their welfare.

It's the least we can do for them. They've been helping us for ages and not asked anything in return.

- Shannon Gately
Random Question:

In what world does it make sense to increase workload, decrease personnel and shorten deadlines?

Okay, so that wasn't truly a "random" question. So, sue me for self-interest.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Rick's Birthday Dinner

I am convinced that I have the most wonderful man ever.

In celebration of Rick's birthday I thought I was quite the sly fox.  I had the presents wrapped and out for him to see a day before his birthday.  I called Rick this morning and asked for his mother's phone number to get some advice. I am sure he knew I was up to something but I don't think he knew what. I asked for and received directions on making one of his favorite dishes, chicken parmesan. I also picked up a birthday cake and candles. I was all set.

I started cooking per "Mom's" instructions. She had said to bread the chicken and then put in the frying pan on high heat. Once lightly seared you turn the heat down and fry a little more.

Did you know that you cannot tell that chicken parmesan is burning
until you smell it?

There was no excess smoke or anything so I listened for any tell tale signs of misfortune. I finally decided to turn the bird over and low and behold, we had Cajun blackened chicken parmesan! ::sigh::

At this point Rick appeared at the pass thru window and told me, "You do know that you need to use lower heats when cooking in a calphalon pan, don't you honey?". Why no, I don't know that. I cook how often? I have cooked chicken parmesan HOW many times? (ummm never)  The burning might also have had something to do with my forgetting to put a little oil in the bottom of the pan before frying.  I only realized THAT mistake the next day.

I was devastated. I had been so proud with trying to cook for my man.  I turned the chicken breast over and promptly misjudged and burned the other side. The next breast came out somewhat better (probably due to me turning it every 5 seconds whether it needed it or not). I then placed the bird boobs (charcoal and all) into the baking dish.

I had done almost everything I was supposed to and the cheese on the top of the dish was absolutely beautiful. I doubt I will ever be able to make it that pretty again. It was so good, thick and gooey. It was the most beautiful golden brown color. It reminded me of the lovely tropical foliage that is spread over a tiger pit. Such a beautiful disguise for the disaster waiting below.

I served the salad and then the chicken. About a quarter way through my breast, I cut the rest into very small pieces. I told Rick that I just could not eat that crap. It was horrid! Ever have a burger that was left on so long that it was crunchy all the way through? It tasted just like that.  Just awful! I dumped the remainder of my chicken into my dog's bowl.  To his credit he ate it without complaint.

Then I looked over at Rick. Rick's plate was empty. He ate every bit of that horrible meal! And said thank you! Rick had only requested 1 gift specifically for his birthday. It required both of us in the same room and a lack of clothing. ::grin:: After eating the failed dinner attempt, my stomach was feeling not so good. I also had been up since early in the morning and still had to work the midnight shift that night. Rick asked if we could just lay down and cuddle (I think he noticed I was not feeling well). We took a nap for an hour and he sent me off to work with a kiss.

I have the best husband ever.

I would say that I have the best dog ever since he ate his without complaint also.  But he eats cat shit, so what does he know?

Friday, May 21, 2010

My dog Jaeger’s letter to Grama

** I am typing this email for Jaeger, my dog. He tried to do it himself but he has no thumbs so it was taking forever. Note: Jaeger insists that tortilla chips be typed as "CHIPS!" because they are the
secret meaning to life**

Dear Grama,

Can you guess what I did yesterday? Huh? Huh? Can you guess? It was the most awesomest day ever!

When Mommy came home she took me out back like always. She got a little mad when I "didn't hear" her call me 2 times. I'm old now and all those smells interfere with my hearing. I never seem to have trouble hearing her when she has food for some reason. 

Well, anyway....then we came back in and she did something weird. She grabbed my new harness!  I went crazy. She let me out front and opened the car door. I was in the front seat like a speeding bullet!  She started the car and actually left the driveway for once!  I tried to be very quiet. I think she forgot I was in the car.

She opened the window for me when she realized I was still in the car.  I got to hang my head out the window for a loooonnnnnggggg time.

Eventually she rolled up the window and pulled in to a parking lot and guess who was there?! Can you guess? Huh? Huh? I bet you can't!

It was DADDY! He laughed at me while I jumped from the front seat to the back trying to get through the window to him. They let me out after Daddy put on my harness. This asphalt smelled COMPLETELY different than the stuff at home. So, I peed on it. 

We walked over to a table w/chairs and they sat down. I did not get a chair. I'm sure it was just 'cause there were no cushions on it.  Mommy put down some water w/ice that she had brought from home. Then she pulled out the dog treats! YAY! I sucked down all the water in 5 minutes flat and ate a few treats.  Mommy & Daddy would talk to other people every so often when they came to the table. The people smelled WUN-DER-FULL!  

You know what happened next? Huh? Do you? The WUN-DER-FULL smelling people brought CHIPS! to the table! I got to eat CHIPS! at the table w/Mommy and Daddy! A WUN-DER-FULL smelling lady said she wanted to pet me but was not allowed and asked if she could bring some water for me. I really like those people.

Then Mommy & Daddy got plates of food! When no one was looking Mommy let me have good tasting paste off her fork. She said it was something called "reef ride" beans. She let me have some cheese too!  And I was still getting a few CHIPS! Finally, after many dog treats, 2 bowls of water, "reef ride" beans, cheese and CHIPS! we got back in our cars and drove home (Daddy was driving separately. I think he doesn't like me near him after "reef ride" beans.) I got to hang my head out the window all the way home too!

We got home and I ran in to tell Halle Kitty all about my trip. I tried to tell Cassie, the Queen Kitty, but she told me to go tell someone who cares. I told her that was what I was trying to do, if she would just listen. She turned away and went to lie down on the treadmill. She seemed really irritated. Might have been 'cause I dropped a stuffed moose on her while I was excited. I drank some more water in the kitchen and then we all went to the couch. Mommy & Daddy watched the moving picture box and I sprawled out to get scratchings from them.

You would think that's enough but you know what happened next? Betcha can't guess! I GOT ICE CREAM! Daddy went to the big black cold box and got one of the ice creams from the box w/the dog on it! I'm pretty sure they put a dog on it 'cause they know how important ice cream is to dogs.

After all that I was kinda tired. We all went to bed and I was quiet the whole night.

The End

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Site will be updated when possible. Check back often to see the ramblings and events of an average person with nothing better to do than share personal information with complete strangers.

I hope you enjoy my blog. If not, you know how to move on right?