Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Despairing Over My Calendar

Hey walter@despair.com,

The only reason I wanted to sign up for this list is that I was trying to complain and couldn't get the complaint to submit properly. You knew that, didn't you? Your company doesn't really want a good way for me to complain, does it? I knew that.

Well, I don't really want to opt in for email either. I already get four emails a day from my kid's karate corporation. Four. Every. Damn. Day. Then, there's that company Drugstore.com that won't stop sending me offers of 'free stuff' if I buy more of their stuff. They send me two or three emails a day and just won't quit it. I got fifty-four emails the other day and there was only one thing in it I really wanted to see. It was pictures of funny snowmen. Did you see that one? It was a good one. My favorite were the armies of snowmen all lined up in rows.

My point is this. I was just trying to make a calendar for my husband. You know the ones we customers make, with snarky little comments like 'Don't forget to buy that solitaire diamond for Valentine's Day .... What? No diamond?' for February 10th. Well, it's a tradition around our house to make that calendar. I wait until it's nearly too late to get it delivered on time. Last year, I was really late and it arrived on January 4th, four days after my insipid comment about New Year's Day. Oh, who knows what the hell I said. It probably wasn't even funny. My husband frequently reminds me that I'm not funny, but he really wants his Demotivator's calendar anyway. And he wants me to add those special dates on it, see? I think he likes the really rude ones about how the neighbor calls to ask him to help take out his old toilet so he can install a new one.

So, my point is that I was working on my husband's calendar today. I was interrupted at least six times - once by the UPS guy, who started leaving packages out in the rain in front of the garage. Twenty-two years, they've delivered to my door and lately they're leaving me soggy packages in front of the garage door so I have to get out of the car in the rain to move the damn things out of the way. Well, I called to get that changed and this prick on the phone said he couldn't help me unless I signed up for some special services program. I don't want the damn special services, I told him. I just want the same old service I got for the first twenty-two years I lived here. What I don't want is more damn email.


So then, I was interrupted by my kid who thought it was a good day to blame me for all the homework he procrastinated. We spent about forty-five minutes of his study time and my calendar-building time arguing with me about it. Then there was dinner to buy. What a bother. You know how it is, Walter@despair.com, don't you? I'm just trying to have a make-it Christmas, even though this make-it is on the computer, and people keep coming along and getting in my face while I'm trying, somewhat desperately, to think of funny things to put on a calendar.

As if 'In the stall next to a woman straining while talking on her cell phone' is funny. It's not. It's just offensive. What is this world coming to? I ask you, walter@despair.com.

The problem, walter@despair.com - remember I had a problem? - is that your calendar doesn't have a 'save draft' button and the third time I was interrupted just as I was entering dates for December. I was almost done! This time I was interrupted by my husband who wanted a hello kiss when he got home from work. I pressed some stupid button on my keyboard and lost the whole damn calendar. Not to mention that I said, "Shit, fuck, fuckety, fuck!" right after I kissed my husband. I tried to hide the reason for my displeasure because I was working on a Christmas present after all, so I think he took it a little personally. Poor guy. 

Then I began again.

I got pretty far, though I'm sure I lost some of the gems that will never be recovered. They were the funny ones, you know. You know how that is. I was up to September again when the dog finally ate his dinner. That dog is so damned picky. He stares at me when I put food in his bowl. Now, this is the $64 per bag kind of food that the vet says he needs to keep him from puking all over my nice white carpet. Well, it's a little beige after two cats, a dog, and a thirteen year old boy and his friends. When I don't add anything to the dog bowl from the counter, such as that special dog chow with beef and broccoli in it, skip the broccoli, please, the dog huffs and walks away from his bowl a couple of times, always circling back. Finally, after everyone has gone to bed, he saunters over to his bowl, sniffs it with disdain and eats a kibble or two. Then he looks at me with sad, sad eyes. I try to ignore him and stay on task. The calendar, remember? Then he eats another four kibbles and pauses to look at me. Not even some beef broth? Calendar, calendar, calendar. Don't look him in the eyes, I tell myself. Focus on the calendar.

Finally, the dog has suffered through most of the kibbles in the dish, leaving five or six out of protest. I am sure of his meaning. I also worry that, along with the cold outside, the smell of that $64 a bag kibble left in the bowl will cause field mice to chew their way through my walls to get inside. Hey, it could happen.

The calendar, walter@despair.com. Remember my calendar?

I finally give in and get the sad, sad dog a cookie to stop his groaning as he jumps onto my quilt on the leather couch to get comfortable. Interruption number 657. I still have a calendar when I sit back down.

That cookie, the one that stopped the groaning, somehow put the dog over the edge, though, and just as I was about to enter dates for October, he's dancing in front of the door to be let out. I can not ignore that message. Eat. Go out. Eat. Go out. It's a habit for him. I mess with that habit at my own peril. Remember that nice white carpet of mine? Well, beige.

When I sit back down, the calendar is there for one sweet moment, but the minute my hands zap static to the keyboard, it is gone. Gone. For. The. Second. Time.

Oh, I am so done. Well ... for tonight, I am done. Tomorrow, so I don't disappoint my sweet husband, I'm going to try to recapture all those funny, snarky, and hardly insipid or distasteful comments I wrote today for his calendar.

I wish you had a 'save draft' button, walter@despair.com. I really do.

I just wonder if I can be brilliant two days in a row.

Thank you for listening, jules

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