Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Wipe Out

Still doing respite care and getting a feel for my new neighborhood. While sitting in the front room interneting and such I repeatedly hear a motorcycle screeching by.

I look out the window. Dude zooms by on a white dirt bike. A few seconds later dude zooms by again. And again. And again. And again. He's wearing cargo pants, a t-shirt, baseball cap and a bluetooth earpiece. Curiously I spy some more.

At first I thought he was just trying to learn how to ride, then I noticed he was lifting the front tire off the bike. Just a small lift, then a little lift, a bit bigger now. He's gone. He's back. He's gone. There goes a pedal-pusher, poor sucker because my dirt bike friend is back.

It's mildly entertaining, moderately annoying, and hella trying to impress the cute blonde that emerged from the house next door.

There she stands. Here he comes. Up goes the front tire. Down goes the seat. Off goes the boy. "Ouch!" goes my mouth.

There goes the girl. There goes the boy and bike.


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Surviving Sugarhouse

Status update: I'm currently doing respite care for one of my clients. Meaning I'm spending a great deal of time in her house, an older house with charming vegetation. Beautiful tulips, a large pink blushing, blossoming hanging tree, blackberry bushes and more. Most of the windows lack screens and that alarms me.

Coming from Lamar, CO, capitol of bugs, I wince at the thought of anything with six or more legs. Even four can be too many. Screen doors, screen windows, screening phone calls...all important as they keep the unwanted away. Luckily Salt Lake lacks the bug population of Lamar, but it doesn't lack in the creepy crawlers.

Spiders. Eeek. I have an irrational fear of them that sprouts from an unfortunate watching of Arachnophobia. My dad called it family bonding, I called it torture. As it turned out I was right, being plagued with nightmares for years.

Those nightmares came crashing into the foreground tonight when I walked up the narrow steep stairs to the attic bedroom I'm sleeping in. Thank you Flowers In the Attic for my irrational fear of attics. So there I am facing fear of attic when I flip on the light to face fear of large black spider speeding towards my toe. I suppose I'm thankful that this was a freeze fear and I was unable to scream. I did mutter some strange guttural sounds in gasps.

I grabbed the first shoe I could find (I only feel right about killing spiders with shoes. They offer enough distance and usually you can't see the guts afterward.). Then I jumped on the chair close to the spider, which by now had a not-so-irrational fear of me, and talked myself into throwing the shoe with a skilled and marked aim. Success! The little sucker curled up into a dead spider position.

Failure! Something soft a furry slid onto my foot at the exact time and I screamed to tears. Up in the attic, locked away, where my mother would never see me again.

I looked down to see a pillow grazing my foot and my dead eight-legged friend still curled up in despair. He deserved a solid beating. I picked up the shoe again.

What happened next may have been savage, but it was necessary.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

My Little Psychotic

With a new engagement and a wedding looming many people ask how we met. It’s fun or embarrassing to admit that we met when I was a lowly intern and he a hot-shot editor, that is the black and white story. Some stories have more depth, more daring, more delusional psychotic history.

Recently we hooked up with our new landlord at a bakery. Instead of ordering a pastry or treat, we just sat there in a semi-awkward silence. It was weirdness we had noticed when we’d viewed the apartment. Skip’s usual ice breaking tactics didn’t not work, but they didn’t really work either. As we left the condo we both commented on the social differences. And by differences we meant that they lacked in being cool, and quite possibly they had a similar thought about us.

Leave it to me to really ponder this, I went as far as placing one spouse on the Autism Spectrum Disorder (eye contact is important people!). So when I found myself sitting across from the husband while Skip read and reread and signed and read the documents it seemed like I should investigate. I attribute this general curiosity/nosiness to my mother. After he asked about my engagement and wedding I turned those same questions on him; well not exactly but I asked how he and his wife met. ICE BREAKER.

“We met in a psych ward. She was a nurse and I was a patient.”

Wait, what. That’s how my parents met! I wish I could say I played it cool and listened to his story but I started hyperventilating, choking on water as a sputtered out my laughter. Back in their BYU days my parents worked at the psych hospital. And while they both worked there my mom gives that same line to people who ask how they met.

“I was a nurse at the psych hospital and your father was a patient.”

My new landlord told me story after story of the kids he worked with, he did more recreation therapy, something current in my own job history.

When we left and Skip encouraged my social skills (usually he’s doing the talking and I’m politely silent, that does not mean I don’t know how to interact) I decided that every woman must have their own little psychotic to love.

From now on when people ask how we met I will say, “We met at a psych ward. I was a nurse, he was a patient.”

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Closing Day

Instant recap: It's taken oh-so-long for me to learn how to "snowboard". In fact, depending on the day and who's feeling sorry and loving towards me it can be said that after 3 years I still don't know how to snowboard.

I do know how to fall with style, just ask the guys at the Canyons. I slipped off the lift and hung suspended in air for a bit until my shoulder popped, dislodging me and I proceeded to do flips and ninja my way into a standing position. I even offered a few fist pumps into the air. It seemed appropriate for the applause I received.

Now at the end of the season I have a wonderful thing to tell. Yes, I still struggle to point the board downhill—speed is not my thing. Yes, heights terrify me and I have a few choice words for cat trails, steeps and people flying by me. Yes, much like fusball Heelside is da Devil! And linking turns for me means coming to a stop and switching directions. I think I can hear my family weeping softly in their homes wondering how I lack all athletic skills.

Good news family. While I'm a dork strapped into a board and failing around in my straight jacket, I fail beautifully in any direction. I have no dominant foot. I profess to be goofy footed but really can ride switch just as well (almost). And on the last day of this season I had a rare moment of courage, also known as stupidity.

I pulled some tricks. My Ollie ain't bad, and it ain't good either. More impressive was my jump. I launched into the air and feeling nostalgia for my brief cheerleading career threw my body into a spread eagle. It worked, I totally landed that...on my stomach pancake-style. After carefully grooming the trail for the next kid I did my patent ninja twist onto my back, then back onto my stomach because that's how I get up. Slight concussion? Perhaps, but I prefer to think of it as exhilaration after conquering the mountain.

Definition of conquering the mountain: getting beat up while beating up the snow and doing a victory dance afterwards, even if no one is there to see it.