Crack

For one reason or another I always seem to take a hiatus from writing at this time of year. But I’m here at last to share a quick story.

Allow me to set the scene. I’m sitting on the couch, my husband is on the adjacent couch. We’re in our appropriately dark living room on an inappropriately sunny afternoon. My phone, which rarely rings, starts buzzing with an incoming call. The number is not familiar, but it is my area code, so I answer. The conversations follows:

“Hello?”
“Hi, is Kiera there?”
“No, this is her mom. Who’s this?”
“Oh, well is she there? Can I speak with her?”

I linger here a little because at this moment my phone starts chiming in my ear with a couple rapid fire texts. I glance at the screen quickly but do not recognize the number, so I return to the conversation more adamantly, albeit a bit confused.

“No, Kiera is at daycare. She’s 20 months old, I’m her mom. Who is this?”
“20 MONTHS!? It says here I should be speaking with a 20 YEAR old.”
“Well, you’re not. Kiera is my baby, who is this?”
“I’m so sorry, I must have the wrong person.”
“WHO IS THIS?”
“This is for a patient referral.”
“Oh… but the person you’re looking for is named Kiera? And is 20 years old, not 20 months old?”
“Yes, I’m sorry.”
“That’s weird though, right? That’s not a very common name.”
“Right, I’m not sure how this happened. I’m so sorry to bother you.”

And with that I hang up the phone. I look over at my husband who had been following along. His expression, initially puzzled and confused, had now resolved into a smile with just a tinge of WTF? I shrug my shoulders, laugh, and then look at the texts I had missed. I find this:

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What in the Sam Hill?

(Which I thought was sam hell my entire life, until literally right now.)

This was the most peculiar 3 minutes of my life.

It was as if someone saw me sitting there on the couch and said “hi there, I see someone kicked you while you were down. Here’s something to laugh at; think about nearly impossible coincidences, 20 year old Kieras, and crack for the rest of the afternoon.”

Admittedly I took the needed opportunity to do just that.

And I feel better knowing that if all else fails, at least I know where I can get some crack. Phew.

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New Writer Learning

Have you ever heard a new word and then suddenly you start hearing this same word used everywhere? Or bought a new car, and now it seems as if everyone is driving it?

Of course you have, this happens to everyone. It’s the way our brains work. It happens to me with such frequency that I now expect it and rely on it. It is called the Frequency Illusion or Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon. I find the latter name really hard to remember. (Until you DO remember, then you’ll hear it everywhere.)

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Seriously, I memes.

So I wrote my last blog post about paint on a car window, proclaiming that it made me happy, and guess what happened next? I saw car windows painted everywhere! Honestly guys, you barely even have to look for this stuff.

I’m not great at taking pictures while driving. It’s not a skill I’m trying to perfect, but I couldn’t pass this one up.

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“New driver learning”

Ok, I appreciate the announcement. I’ll stay out of your way.
But did you also just learn how to write?

Being Steve’s Friend

As I close the books on the summer of 2016 I can’t help but note that I did not attend a wedding this summer. For the past decade my summers have included the celebration of at least one wedding, sometimes 10. Summer season is synonymous with wedding season! I kind of missed it. It’s fun to get dressed up and go out with your friends. I would have whole-heartedly welcomed the opportunity to wear something other than a nursing bra, and possibly might have even brushed my hair. Let’s be honest though, I really just missed hearing those two little words. Open bar.

But as I talked with a friend last night, who has half a dozen weddings in the next year (some of which are multiple plane rides away), I decided I don’t miss it that much. It can be a little consuming to plan your life events around someone else’s life events.

Luckily for me, Steve got married.

I do not know Steve. Nor do I know the owner of this car (Steve’s Friend). But I have been walking by this car for the last three weeks and it makes me happy.

Steve’s Friend must have attended a wedding on Labor Day weekend. Maybe this person even shuttled the happy couple or was part of the wedding party, I’ll never know. But parking next to this car makes me laugh every day. I walk past and think to myself “damn, that must have been a great wedding”.

I have been to this type of wedding before. I have cheesily decorated a car for a wedding related event before (party van!). Also, since everyone and their brother owned this unsightly Impala at some point in their lives, I feel like I am Steve’s friend too. So I have been living vicariously through this person for the last three weeks. It’s fun being Steve’s Friend.

I even find myself surprisingly excited to get to work everyday to see if the window paint is still there. I’m going to start placing bets.

Today I finally worked up the courage to snap a couple pictures of Steve’s Friends car (creeper…) only to reassure myself that when this person does decide to wash their windows, and I’ve forgotten about this entirely, I can think back and laugh all over again.

P.S. Steve, I sincerely hope you got it.

 

Mid-life Bliss

I spend a lot of time in my car these days. The drive from daycare to my house only takes about 3 minutes, but my kid falls asleep on this short drive almost every single day. Imagine falling asleep that fast. Turning the car off usually wakes her up, and is a last resort in my book. So typically I drive around for 15 extra minutes, or I just sit in my car and wait.

The break in my day is not wholly unwelcome, and I end up listening to NPR a lot. It makes me feel like I’m doing something, when I’m not actually doing anything. I’ve started looking forward to the “All Things Considered” segment at 4:30. Audie Cornish’s articulate voice signifies the end of my work day. It is literally my 5:00 whistle, a half hour premature. I’ve caught a couple of stories from the “stuck in the middle: work, health and happiness at midlife” series and have to admit, I find them very interesting.

At 31 I have to hope that I am neither at, near, or past the mid-point of my life. But come on; I’m spending at least 15 minutes of everyday listening to talk radio. If that doesn’t scream mid-life, I’m not sure what does. And while the stories may not pertain to my age group, or to me in particular, they make some strong points.

I’ll consider it education for the inevitable. Advice to store away for the future. Like their suggestion to find a hobby. “An interest that is unrelated to work or family”. When is the last time I’ve done something I enjoy that wasn’t for/with work or family? I honestly don’t know, it has been a long time. But for now I’m going to let it slide. Because so far this stage of life is the best yet, and I’m loving every hobby-less second. Someday though, when the hazy memories of keeping an infant alive are behind me, I’ll revisit this and will need to be reminded to find something just for me.

I know you’re out there. Trying not to wake the sleeping monster in your own backseat, hypothetical or actual. And you probably need a hobby too. So here’s the link.

Area Codes

I’ve been doing a lot of weather related reading lately. Looking at maps and forecasts to try to find the light at the end of the tunnel. Searching for some kind of proof that there will eventually be a relief from the sub-zero, below average, temperatures. I haven’t found any promising news. Actually, the verdict is that we will continue to have record-breaking lows for at least the rest of the month.

I did, however, find this. Which has nothing to do with the weather, but is entertaining nonetheless.

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I expected to see a lot more area codes filled in for some reason. And I’m really curious as to what is up with the Nebraska outlier. Who goes to Nebraska?