Friday, August 28, 2009

Pondering the Imponderable

With the kids back in school, I’ve had a chance to do a little thinking. And, frankly, that’s got to stop. It just leads to musing. Followed by reflecting. Which of course segues right into contemplating.

And before you know it, I’ve missed “Royal Pains” again, which wouldn’t be a bad thing if I had DVRd it, but because I'm still ambivalent as to whether the lead character’s beautiful eyes can compensate for the fact that at some point in every scene he walks in that sort of swingless shuffle so reminiscent of 7th grade boys I find myself wanting to give him a swirly, I haven’t programmed the TiVo to record it.

(Ha! You thought I’d forgotten where that sentence was headed, didn’t you?)

Not only that, long-term reflection often bumps up against life’s little conundrums, which can be real cranium crackers for SAHMs like me whose kids don’t SAH any more. A few uninterrupted hours wrestling thoughts like the following can have you screeching “it’s ‘Richard the Third’ you illiterate hillbilly!” at Jeopardy contestants and drinking sweetened condensed milk straight out of the can.

So read this list of unanswerable questions with caution. Not everyone has trained for it as long as I have:

1: Why is it, when my planner says, “Finish daily Sudoku before noon” my hair is flawless, but when the schedule calls for something like “Brunch with the Pope” I wind up at the Vatican looking like my head was savaged by an electric mixer?

2: Does anyone really take the surveys at the bottom of their sales receipts? How does that guy at Taco Bell keep a straight face when he’s telling me to go home, log onto “Aychihuahua-dot-com” and answer 20 questions about how well he handed me my bag, all so I might win a free churro? Is there ANYONE besides Paris Hilton who has this kind of time?

3: What possible reason could there be for a grocery store manager to keep a feather duster in his back pocket? If the food has been sitting there so long it requires dusting…

4: Have you noticed that smart people never say, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know”? Honestly, could you imagine Steven Hawking saying that? I don’t mean to be unkind, but folks who really believe such a thing probably don’t have much of either going for them.

5: Isn’t it about time we all admitted that any electronic accessory requiring a stylus is just stupid? And this goes double for those virtual signature dealios that are turning up everywhere. They’re so careful about asking for 296 forms of ID before accepting your credit card, only to have you sign a plastic screen using a plastic pen attached with a plastic cord, leaving your signature looking like you sneezed it onto the line.

6: When I’m finally in charge of the universe, there will be one planet for early risers, and one planet for night owls. And the Night Owls planet will eventually conquer the Early Risers planet, and so help me, we will make you our slaves.

7: Why do we name Middle Schools after people? I think the name should give some indication as to what will be going on inside. Of course, this means they would all be called “Lord of the Flies Academy”, but at least then you couldn’t say you weren’t warned.

8: A few significant people in my life have begun saying “anywho,” and I’m really not sure how long I can go without smacking them. Seriously, I am very concerned about this.

9: Could someone please explain to me why it’s all right for a teenager to stand on the stairs and shriek that you are the most hateful, wretched parent ever to be dredged from the U-bend of Satan’s sewer, but when you say, “No, you can’t have a sleepover on a school night,” the same teenager wails, “Why are you TALKING to me like that??”

10: If there is a more sublime junk food combination than McDonald’s fries and Diet Coke, please don’t tell me about it. I don’t think I could take that much happiness.

11: Why is it that the warning on DVDs has the letters “FBI” written so huge and menacingly that your eyes are transfixed too long to read the actual warning? And while we’re on the subject, does anyone really think the FBI will show up at your house and haul you off for duplicating “Baby Einstein”? Because I have a number of FBI agent friends, and I’ve never heard any of them sharing war stories about their DVD arrests. Never.

12: What would possess an otherwise intelligent and rational couple with whom I am personally acquainted to name their ninth child “Superman”? As Doug is my witness, that’s exactly what they did.

13: And finally, are the rest of you as completely UN-surprised as I that Hollywood’s ex-Madam Heidi Fleiss recently opened a dog grooming business here in Las Vegas?

Because, honestly, that’s the one thing in all of this that makes perfect cosmic sense.

“Morning's at seven;
The hill-side's dew-pearled;
God's in his Heaven -
All's right with the world.”

Thanks, Bobby B. Couldn’t have said it better myself.

58 comments:

aunt dyanne said...

Sweet Post DeNae! They always make my day!

David said...

Dude...my hands are HUGE...

Sarah said...

I am with you on the anywho thing. The other one that make me nuts is "cool beans" who comes up with these anyway? I love Royal pains, and I too find his eyes "dreamy", but I think most 7 grade boys are taller.

Kristina P. said...

Did you have to mention the "D" word? I want a Diet Coke!

I miss you already!

Annette Lyon said...

Very funny. Anywho . . .

(ducking and running . . .)

Heather said...

I've been lurking on your fantastic writing for a little while now, but I had to come out of the shadows to say that I'm sooo with you on "anywho." Like always, hilarious post. It's rare that reading something gets me to laugh out loud, but you seem to get me to do it quite regularly.

Teri said...

Hilarious! Thanks for the laugh today...and I don't think it would be as funny if it weren't all true!

TheQueen@TerrorsInTiaras said...

So, about #9--I read an article that the teenager's brain is not developed enough to read facial and non-verbal cues when you speak to them. So, when you are thinking about forgetting to buy Diet Coke, but talking about sleepovers, she misinterprets your disappointment over the Diet Coke as "I found you in that Satan's sewer, by the way." So, the real problem is, I don't know, our faces(?)when we speak to teenagers. See? Now everything is perfectly clear. As mud.

NatureGirl said...

Excellent questions Muse, but who do you think is planning the perfect defense and optimal offense while you are all sleeping in? Hmmm?

DeNae said...

You should probably know that "David" is my son who clearly watches too much Futurama.

Study, boy! College tuition doesn't grow on trees!!

Lara said...

My in-laws always, always do those surveys. And they actually get free stuff. I always think I should do them, but never actually get around to it. In the end, blogging is much more important than a probably free churro.

And #11 had me laughing so hard I snorted. I have always wondered about that. I think the gigantic FBI letters are a scare tactic.

Chief said...

oh my! I say anywho all the time. it's a good thing were hundreds of miles apart or I would be in trouble

Ken said...

Hilarious! Although I think the proper spelling is "anyhoo." It just seems a better fit for such an obnoxious bastardization of our language. Toodles!!

Karen said...

Superman?

Please, please, PLEASE tell me this is some sort of elaborate joke.

DeNae said...

Karen, the name "Superman" is on the kid's birth certificate. I am totally and completely not kidding.

InkMom said...

I would have known you wrote this even if I didn't know you wrote it.

With smart people like you and me on the side of the Night Owls, how can we lose?

Cherie said...

You are so funny I almost can't stand you - I was laughing so hard but when I got to #6 I totally knew we were without doubt soul sisters!!!!

The Garden of Egan said...

DaNae, you are seriously the most bizarre woman I've ever read.....seriously......the U bend of Satan's sink...........where in the Helena, Montana did that come from????????

Honestly, if I don't ever get to meet you I think I might pull my eyelashes out!

So, anywho........I look forward to another episode of the Deranged DeNae Diaries..............hurry it up!

Lynne's Somewhat Invented Life said...

You are personally acquainted with FBI people? Whoa.

And I'm with you. Us night owls need some recognition. What insane people start re-roofing a house at 7:00 am sharp? Practically outside my bedroom window. They should be arrested by FBI people that you personally know. Send them over.

Bloggin Betty said...

Yes, yes.. Chief does say "anywho" all the time! That is exactly what I was thinking as I read this post...since I found her from her blog.

And now I will stalk your blog as well :)

Lacy said...

Denae, just gave my "early riser" husband the heads up that us night owls will be taking over their world and making them our slaves one day. I totally can't wait :) And I can back up your claim to Superman.... that is what happens when you get up to 8 kids. They are great parents that don't let the little things bug them so they decided to go with the other kids opinion on the babies name. That's the story I heard at least!

Kazzy said...

I got online to write to my missionary son, but checked my reader first. I am not kidding when I tell you that my husband and I were laughing/crying at some of these questions. You are heee-larious!

Melanie J said...

1. I will join your night planet army and I will be your Generalissimo.

2. What if anywho is said ironically?

3. I taught at Arizona Middle School for five years. Arizona (MS) is in Riverside, CA. Arizona is an incredibly stupid name for a middle school not in Arizona. "I teach at Arizona." Wha--? So, I'm fine with a Lincoln or Jefferson or Obama middle school. Whatever. Bobcat Goldwaithe Middle? Great. Bring it on. Arizona? Screw you.

4. I know a couple who let their four kids decide on the name for their fifth and that's how they ended up with Superstar Jemima Five. True story. They're in my sister-in-law's ward. Charrette's husband could ask my sister-in-law's husband to verify this story. Because it's THAT true. (Because he knows her husband. That's why that would work, see.)

5. My own random thought: Classy people never use the word classy. Which any VH-1 reality show. You'll see.

Melanie J said...

Uh, I meant watch. Because that would make sense.

Homer and Queen said...

I hate anywhoo too!!!

Did not know about Heidi F. I guess I should start watching Paula at night...

AS Amber said...

If you fill out the survey at the bottom of your Outback receipt you'll get a free bloomin' onion. That's a $6.95 value, people. Just sayin'.

And if you would have been at the Outback in Orem, Utah on Thursday night you could have seen a (brand new) waitress slip and FALL DOWN and spill an entire tray of drinks all over the freakin' place. Including on herself and one of the girls she was delivering said drinks to. Luckily it was a packed house so everyone got to see. A sight which, of course, is priceless.

And people who get up early are just really annoying. And I loved "Ken's" comment about anyhoo. So funny.

love you!

DeNae said...

Amber, you totally have to blog about falling down at Outback. My only hope is that the security cameras caught it all and as we speak some enterprising bus boy is putting it on YouTube.

Oh, and I also hope you weren't hurt. You know, much. Maybe something amusing, like a bruised butt? Or perhaps your shirt flew up over your head?

C'mon, little sister, give me something!!

Jessica said...

I have had too much time on my hands with the kids in school, I need to start thinking about the important things like you. I think you are great.

I love the name Superman! That is the funniest. I totally wish I'd thought of that for boy 4.

Steph @ Diapers and Divinity said...

Well, DeNae, this trip into your mind has left me both full of admiration and deep, deep fear. Not enough fear to run away though. I'll be back. When I'm done laughing.

AS Amber said...

What makes you think it was me that fell?? OK, it was me. I fell on my knees in like a super-slow-mo type of thing. So bruised knee. Displaced, multiple compound fractured pride.

As per your request, I blogged it. Ugh...I'm still dying.

Methinks you and Ness need to come visit me at work when you drive through!!!

MommyJ said...

I love you. Can I say that here? Really I do.

charrette said...

All I can say is...

#6 and #8: Amen and Amen.

And the first three will forever remain mysteries.
But thanks for making me laugh!
(Especially #11)

charrette said...

p.s. Good to hear from you. Missing you already.

M-Cat said...

I say anyhoo all the freakin time! I will repent.

And as one who would reside on the early risers planet, I am seriously afraid. I will McD's fries and diet coke on hand to allay the night owls take over

okierivermama said...

i am so with you on the night owls planet so how the heck did i wind up giving birth to a bunch of morning people? and boys at that?? its nothing for me to wake up to the sounds of a lego war going full force in the living room with xmen cartoons for a back drop...and while on that subject why must every cartoon voice be at the same pitch as nails on a chalkboard?
steff

L.T. Elliot said...

#6 is my favorite. We will, indeed, make them our slaves. Gwa ha ha ha ha!

Amber Lynae said...

DeNae - have you checked to see the parents of Superman are not in fact Lois and Clark... and therefore- just trying to carry on the family name? Or maybe they made a promise to one of the other 8 children that if they did something they could pick the name of the child. So trying to be a good parent to one child become an insane parent to another..... I dunno I'm still trying to think about reason why one would do that. And I am a HUGE superman fan. So yeah.

Sher said...

It's official. I'm too dumb to read your blog. Maybe it's my adult ADHD, or my brain tumor that causes a 47 second lag between reading something and comprehending.

I still Love you though!

Migillicutty said...

Draco Malfoy said #4, so what you think about it is SOO true!

You're gonna be in charge of the universe? Someone save us early risers ;)

Anywho...

If you had made me laugh any harder on #11 I think I would have lost a vital organ. It was THAT funny.

That Girl said...

Musing = dangerous.

Got it. ;o)

myimaginaryblog said...

1. I think a guy named Murphy already explained that one.

2. I spent almost $250 at an Old Navy Outlet last month (shocking, but I do have a family of seven, and I also brought $100 worth of it back after I tried the stuff on the victims and some of it didn't pass muster,) and for my trouble I was given one of those survey things for 20% off my NEXT purchase. "Um, this might have interested me if you'd given it to me *last* time." (See Murphy reference, above.)

3. Most dust is comprised of human skin flakes. (Have you ever noticed that dust accumulates fastest in closets? Where we hang things that have been next to our skin? Yes, I too am a SAHM with much to think about.) So my guess is that the feather duster is to combat all the customers who walk around scratching.

4. I have not noticed that. Does that mean I'm not smart? But I've also never said that. Does that mean I *am* smart?

5. My brother-in-law's signature looks like a sneeze whether he writes it with a stylus or a pen.

6. Let me think about this one some more and get back with you on it in about 4 to 6 hours. And we can make our battle plans.

7. I think they should start naming the schools after corporate sponsors.

8. I share your concern. Anywho. Kidding! Kidding! (Runs. Ducks.)

9. What do you mean by "all right for"? Also, never presume reasonableness when teenagers are involved (or, in my case, very advanced 9-year-olds.)

10. Belgian frites from the stand by the Bourse, with any beverage at all. One learns to live with the happiness (the jet lag provides the necessary "opposition in all things.")

11. Are you trying to say you have copies of Baby Einstein available?

12. Satan.

13. So, basically she's still in the same business. (Ah, looks like Satan got to me as well.)

----

(Great post. Loved it. Keep your deep thoughts coming.)

Brooke said...

Diet Coke & McD's fries are very near to the nector of the Gods. However, Dr. Pepper & Cheetos have to come in a close second.

The kid named Superman is sort of freakishly inspiring. It almost makes me want to have another kid, just so I can name her Ladyhawke. (I've already begged my husband to let me name a son Rutger Hauer, but the party-pooper always says no. Humph.)

Wendi said...

You are hilarious. Anyway, no, there's nothing better on earth than fries and a Diet Coke. Damn straight on that one.

And, um, if one of those 8x10's of Barry M. was to fall into your hands, I'd be happy to give you my address...

Wendi

Pam said...

I just wanted to thank you for your post over at MMB. It was absolutely wonderful!

Alyson (New England Living) said...

You are hilarious! I came over from MMB, by the way, and I'm glad I did.

Alyson (New England Living) said...

Oh, but I hate any diet soda. Give me the REAL stuff, please!

myimaginaryblog said...

I just read your whole post from MMB (as posted on Facebook) and was thinking "This is very nicely expressed," and then got down to the bottom and saw your photo and thought, "That explains the good writing!"

skipper said...

I just skipped over from MMB and while I love this post I wanted to thank you for your insightful comments on Utah Mormons. I am one (gasp) and I didn't know it was "Us" vs "Them" until one of my sisters moved to Maryland and began referring to Utah transplants as "Barbie and Ken". Shortly after that another sister moved to Iowa and informed me that members in Iowa were nice, unlike members in Utah (including me, I'm assuming). Finally, a new sister in my ward has begun making comments like "Utah Mormons are very materialistic" and "members with less than 5 kids are disobedient" accompanied by meaningful glances around the room. Thank goodness I'm now in Nursery. I guess.

Kim Marx said...

Love No. 9

Lela said...

This one's going viral. Mark my words. And just for the record, I'm starting to sign those stupid screens with X. Much more ledgible than my sneeze.

The Crash Test Dummy said...

Hi DeNae, Tell me tell me when are you coming? Wednesday I am available all day. Does that work for you? Tomorrow I can get together between 9-11 a.m. and then not again until way later. We could meet somewhere. If it's on Wednesday you could come over to my house for lunch. Let me know. So excited to see you!

The Crash Test Dummy said...

Hey, I can't access your email from this laptop so I'm hoping you read this. I don't know where or what you're schedule is tomorrow, but me and Val and maybe Jillybean are having some lunch and chocolate cake at IKEA tomorrow in honor of you being here in Utah. Which means, you're the guest of honor.

If you can't make it @11:45 I can totally meet you somewhere else for a spell later. Let me know.

The Crash Test Dummy said...

ha ha ha ha ha ha Oh DeNae, you kill me. How do you think of these things? It is so nice to read you again. I can't wait until you publish a book of essays. Let's talk about it over chocolate cake at IKEA, K! K! K!

Kristina P. said...

You and your blog make me happy. Anywho, I adore you and your amazing sister!

JennyMac said...

anywho? HAHA. and there are many others I could list...

Staci Kramer said...

I just wanted to drop you a quick note to tell you how much I like your style. I left a comment on Mormon Mommy Blogs the other day (about the jeans) and your response was so articulate and right on. I was in a nasty mood when I made the original comment and probably should have kept my criticism to myself, however, I'm glad that I found your blog through it. You are my new blogging hero so I just thought I'd let you know. Keep the great posts coming!

The Garden of Egan said...

Hey....when are you gonna get to blogging again? Sure wish we coulda met!

Dustin and Melanie said...

MMMMMM McD's french fries. . .