Thursday, July 28, 2005

The Blathering Blonde

One of my truly bestest friends in the whole wide world, Kant, is reconsidering her packrat ways and perhaps doing a major restructuring of her life in the physical sense. Many a business have cropped up offering to help simplify your life in terms of junk around the house. Handy...I've been attempting to do this very same thing since I finished nursing school, and I have actually made some headway. I'm sure my neighbors await with sadistic glee to see what else I am pitching into the garbage bin. Honestly, who needs two vacuum cleaners anyway??

As of lately, I've been hiding out at Nebraska Furniture Mart, waiting for that next great bargain. Instead of an apartment that looks at though a poor college student lives in it, I'm going more for an apartment that looks as though it is inhabited by a working professional. Nothing ostentatious, but everything simple...and matching. Lately, I've become obsessed with my spare bedroom, which until now has been used mostly for storage, and Sam's kennel. I tossed out a lot of junk, moved much to a storage shed to be gone through later for prospective Ebay auctions. I visited NFM and dropped a wad of dough on a new daybed, a white computer armoire, and am planning on painting my old dresser white to white dog will even match the room. After giving much thought, I realized my guest room/office is now the bedroom I had always wanted when I was a teenager. My daybed will be filled with pillows so I can have my little reading alcove to pour over great books. My computer workstation so I can create a great book of my own.

But I digress.

As Kant says, being organized is somewhat of a lifestyle change. I'm sort of an obsessed organized person at work...not so much at home. Instead of everything in its place at home, I prefer to have an everything in its place sort of life. Every relationship, interpersonal or otherwise, has its own place and distinct purpose. Everything has a point. Everything is simple. Only my job is complicated, but when I clock out and walk out of those double doors, the hospital ceases to exist. I don't have a ginormous circle of friends...quality, not quantity. Each relationship unique and special to me. Lately, even some of my relationships have become complicated, or just painfully one-sided...and it is driving me nuts. I guess I should, as my friend Woody sometimes says, "Fish or cut bait."

I've been considering taking a travel nurse assignment after the first of the year...probably to someplace where it doesn't snow. It's a big step, and wildly go where no one knows you and establish roots all over again...even if it is for 3 months. However, I am 30...and already most of the people I have known in life have gone on to settle down, have families and so on. Sometimes, I can't help but feel as though life has passed me by...even though I am told by some friends that they are envious that I have the freedom to come and go as I please with little obligation.

So maybe all my problems would be solved if I did a decluttering of life...again. I have an old microwave cart I need to pitch anyway.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Another CFR draws to a close...

CFR, or Charpie Family Reunion to you, has gone off with a smashing success. No bad accidents, no hostile family squabbles. I do believe that my family caused the stock of Anheuser-Busch to soar for the week as it seemed that is all anyone would drink.

About 80% of the family stayed in campers out at a campsite, which was the primary meeting place every night. Everyone else who didn't have to "rough it", stayed in their cabin or lakehouse. My cousin, Dave, and his wife arrived in a very shiny, new-fangled motorhome which cost roughly $150K. This thing was so posh and swank, I'm convinced it even wiped your butt for you. Boy, camping sure sucks.

An activity was planned for everyday, even if that activity involved playing in the lake. Skiing, tubing, riding the wave runner, playing on the inflated island, or just laying in some personal raft, drinking whatever your drink of the day happened to be, basking in the sun, and trying to ignore that pesky little fish who nibbled on anyone who happened to be in the water. Some family members got a lovely fish-hickey to remember the reunion by, me included.

We frequented "The Triangle"...which basically is the Walmart of Hickory County. "You can find anything at The Triangle" is the most uttered phrase at Pomme de Terre lake. The Triangle is a gas station...on steroids. They carry everything from ice to potpourri. Potato wedges to Red Hat Club essentials. It's can find anything at The Triangle. I suspect that the owner will start offering an Ozark dating service sometime next year...

I talked with a second cousin about college courses as she has just started college. Cletus (who is married to a distant cousin-in-law) chimes in about how he was great at high school...before he dropped out. No one likes Cletus (his real name is Kelly), but it is safe to say that he is always the dumbest person there, which usually provides some sort of entertainment for everyone else. He thinks he looks like Brad Pitt. He looks more like Britney Spears' husband...on meth.

We had a luau, and my stepdad looked mighty fine in his grass skirt and coconut bra. Everyone wore leis. I got lei-d at my family reunion by an uncle. The most excitement I've had in a while.

We went on a canoe trip one day, and I discovered that my dog Sam is a really crappy swimmer, and not very bright. He jumped out of the canoe, into swift water, and tried to swim upstream. I had to rescue him before he went under. I also discovered that he is allergic to fleas. I paid a vet over $100 so she could shave bald spots all over his body, give him a shot, and send me home with a bottle of pills that I have to spend 30 minutes twice daily trying to cram the damn things down his throat for the next 10 days. As of now, I have a really pathetic looking dog. Between him, and my clogged-peehole cat, and my fish whose fins fell off...I'm starting to think that my lot in life is to care for handicapped animals.

Overall, the reunion was loads of fun, and the added bonus was that I didn't have to work for an entire week. Hee!! I returned to work, much more relaxed and in a rare good mood.

I shoud take a week off from work every month.

Friday, July 08, 2005

In Today's News...

Our gov, Matt Blunt, has now banned Medicaid from paying for erectile dysfunction meds for their recipients. Ofcourse those individuals with pulmonary issues will still be able to get it, but not for those who need that little extra boost in the bedroom. As a taxpayer, I can appreciate this decision by our well-coiffed governator. Why should my taxes go to fund someone else's sex life...especially when mine is a virtual drought?

To counter this decision (as someone out there always has to have the dissenting opinion), an activist for Medicaid folks complained that without the ED meds, some people would be severely hindered in their quest to procreate...thereby being in conflict with Blunt's Southern Baptist social platform of Pro-life.

Methinks that if you are on Medicaid, and cannot afford ED meds on your probably should not be having kids oweing to the fact that you probably cannot afford them either.

But that is just my opinion.

Right now, I am at work, having a rare decent evening. I'm dining on fruit salad and goldfish (nurses have the very best nutrition habits). After tonight, I am going to be off for a whole week to attend my family reunion. A whole week of scheduled family chaos: golf tournament, boating, Hawaiian-themed party, campfires, cliff jumping, and maybe this year, my cousin will go water skiing in a patriotic thong...again. Even though this family is not my blood relation (they are all from my stepdad's side), they are family to me, and I enjoy spending time with them. I only wish I had computer access so I could blog the week. I will just have to remember the high points and blog them upon my return.

So, this is me signing off for the week. While you guys are working, I'll be basking in the Southern Missouri sun. Bwah!

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Half Ton!?!?

After a relatively relaxing and enjoyable weekend at the lake, I had to come to work tonight...and it sucked from the word "go". I got the worst team ever. I have 4 people, with a combined weight of 623.7 kg. Or, in case you are not metric system savvy, that's roughly 1372 lbs. I think that is less than what a Ford Pinto weighs.

And to think I was going to be an English teacher before this whole nursing thing happened. I was going to broaden young minds with the words of Shakespeare while writing the Great American Novel in my free time. Now, I put my hands where no normal person would put them. The golden moments of my job, the ones that make me go "I'm so glad I am a nurse" are very few and far between.

To make things even better, the Newbie Residents have now invaded the hospitals. This time last year, I didn't know enough to know that they didn't know anything either. Now, I know...and now it is very, very scary. If you really must get sick, July is not the time to do so. Neither is August. I think you could get sick in the fall and be relatively safe.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Independence Day Yammerings

Today is the first of July. Hard to believe the year is half over, but now we are at the halfway point...Independence Day festivities. Everyone is all in lather to go to the lake (myself included) and partake of picnics, boating, and fireworks display. I often think about things I did as a kid, how excited me and my brothers would get this time of year. Dad would buy a brick of Black Cats, divide them amongst the three of us, light a "punk" (which I discovered later is only cow poop on a stick) and turn us loose on a quest to see what we could blow up. I suppose our penchant for black powder is genetic...I know for a fact that my parents camped on the banks of the Republican River at this time in 1974 and my mother spent some of her free time trying to blow up frogs with Black Cats. The rest of her free time, apparently, was utilized by conceiving her first child...Yours Truly.

My parents would really drop some serious cash in the fireworks tent, 4 days of flaming fun until that big night with the big bbq and the big fireworks show put on by my parents. Our own fireworks displays were well known throughout the neighborhood. My favorite was the Happy Lantern. Sparks would fly and then ~bloop~ a little Chinese paper latern would appear. My brothers favored the parachute ones. A rocket would race into the sky ~bang~ then out would pop a little parachute which would ultimately not land on the ground for recovery, but instead go MIA until the following winter when someone would spot it hanging in the leaf-barren tree in the front yard.

And don't forget those snake thingies that would seemingly grow out of the sidewalk when lit, leaving a big black mess in their wake, not to mention the burn mark that would forever be emblazoned onto the concrete...long after the Second Coming.

We had no fear of burnt limbs or visits to the ER. We laughed in the face of danger as our dog ate anything that had smoke coming out of it. Bwah-hah-hah!

Now, I prefer to just go to the big fireworks display...usually free. I roll my eyes in annoyance at all the debris left over from spent fireworks on the 5th, littering my streets. I grit my teeth as my neighbors blow off the 100-count Saturn missile (with report) right outside my bedroom window while I am sleeping. Bastards. I guess I am just getting old. My excitement for lighting fireworks with a poop-stick has gone by the wayside with the likes of the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy.

I drive through Riverside, and notice there is a fireworks tent every 15 feet. There must be some city ordinance that permits one little town to have so much flammable material. If every single piece of fireworks were to spontaneously combust in Riverside, all that would remain of that town would be a large crater roughly the size of Rhode Island. I've often felt that Riverside should post large "NO SMOKING" signs at their city limits, effective from June 20th to July 6th. A true testament to the tourism dollar, Riverside could boast that they have enough fireworks to effectively blow off the fingers of every man, woman and child in the Greater Kansas City area, and it would be absolutely true.

No, I think I will stick with the free displays around town. No handling of dried poop required for that...not to mention less risk of me burning off something I may need later.

Have a fun, safe and burn-free Independence Day!