Not in the clamor of the crowded street, not in the shouts and plaudits of the throng, but in ourselves, are triumph and defeat.--Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

REDIRECT ALERT! (Scroll down past this mess if you're trying to read an archived post. Thanks. No, really, thanks.)

Due to my inability to control my temper and complacently accept continued silliness with not-quite-as-reliable-as-it-ought-to-be Blogger/Blogspot, your beloved Possumblog will now waddle across the Information Dirt Road and park its prehensile tail at http://possumblog.mu.nu.

This site will remain in place as a backup in case Munuvia gets hit by a bus or something, but I don't think they have as much trouble with this as some places do. ::cough::blogspot::cough:: So click here and adjust your links. I apologize for the inconvenience, but it's one of those things.

Monday, January 05, 2004

Saturday Saga, Part the Second

Up then, and got dressed and got the kids to start getting dressed, and by the time everyone was ready to go, it was almost 11:30.

Time for breakfast!

Cat wanted to go to Sonic, “to gets that thing, you know, with the stick, and it’s got a stick, and it’s brown, and sausage and it’s on a stick with a pancake…” “Pancake on a stick?” “…mm-hm, pancakesticks with a sausage on a stick, and that’s what I want for breakfast and we have to get that at Sonic and we can go there right now.” She said this while still wearing only her pajama top, a bathrobe, floral-patterned panties, and Mom’s houseshoes. “You know, you’re going to HAVE to put on clothes to go to the store, right?” “Yes, Daddy.” Okay, just so we’re clear on that--anyway, she’s the only one who wanted breakfast, and the only one who wanted to stop at Sonic--everyone else wanted lunch, since the day was now half wasted by our sluggardliness. “Cat, let’s just go get some lunch.”

Bottom lip pooched out, Lacrimal Discharge Apparatus set to “Fake” and shoved into high gear, sound control set to #4, (one of the few settings it has, those being #1-Giggle Uncontrollably, #2-Scream in Terror, #3-Whispering Suitable for Use Only in a Foundry, and #4- BWAAAAAAAAAAAAA!).

Oh for the love o’Jiminy Carter… “HUSH!” In the interest of not bleeding from my ears (which can happen when you stand too close to a jet engine or listen to her verbal manifestations of dissatisfaction) I made the command decision to make a special trip to Sonic, and then take the rest of us for a real meal. We packed the van with the stuff we had to return and took off for the Land on the Next Big Ridge to the North.

For some reason, Reba had a craving for Mexican food, so we stopped by the place next to Wallyworld. Man, they were fast. That happens when they are not real busy, I suppose. I got the #4 (not the same as the #4 noted above)--very tasty for a numeral, although one occasionally wishes for some selections with decimals--I hear the #5.409 is good. Or maybe some of those imaginary numbers. I’ve heard so much about. Mmmm.

Got finished, got our stuff from the van and walked on in to the Promised Land of Low Prices Always. Always.

Let the little old lady check the bags and put a sticker on all the stuff--three pairs of jeans, a lovely wooden Christmas decoration that had all the earmarks of having been produced in a Chinese labor camp, a shirt, a DVD, a video game cartridge. One of the nice things about waiting a day or two before bringing things back is that you miss the huge crush of folks who come out the day after Christmas.

The bad thing is that sometimes items will already be taken out of the inventory control system, so that even if your lovely wooden Christmas decoration that has all the earmarks of having been produced in a Chinese labor camp and it DOES have a price sticker from Wal-Mart stuck to it, it doesn’t mean that you can get a refund, and you are thus forced into the uncomfortable position of either passing it along to someone at next year’s Dirty Santa contest, or giving it to some charity who will take it and sell it in their thrift store where someone else will buy it and give it to you. Or, you could take out a whole year’s worth of frustrations on it with a 12 gauge and a 3 inch magnum load of 00 buck, but that would probably make people nervous around you.

Got that done, and it was time to go shopping--my very pragmatic mom had given each of us a gift card. My sister was just aghast at such lowbrow gifting, but doggone it, it’s hard enough when we shop for OURSELVES to find stuff that fits right, much less to ask a little bony old woman to go traipsing about all over town trying to figure out what to get us. I told her if she wanted to do that, it was fine by me. Especially since we’re there all the time anyway.

I took Jonathan and Catherine with me, and Reba took the older girls with her, and we promised to meet back in the front of the store in forty minutes. Boy, that old saying about time flying when you’re having fun is way, WAY off.

First stop was to try to find Catherine a belt. She has a a couple of pairs of jeans she wears that are too loose, and she thinks nothing of walking around with plumber butt shining proud. To be so nonchalant about that, she sure is picky when it comes to PICKIN’ OUT A BLEEDIN’ BELT! “No, that one’s ugly. No, that one’s for a boy. No, that one has the wrong flowers. No, that one’s for a boy, too.” (All of these “boy belts” were in the girl clothes section--anything big and bulky with rivets she seems to think is masculine. Go figure.) Anyway, nothing came of that. I told her we’d just tie an extension cord around her.

Next, jeans for Boy. Three pairs, took five minutes. And he got an Auburn sunvisor.

Next, a wallet and a key case for Daddy. I have one of those cram-packed George Costanza wallets that looks like a backpack shoved into my butt pocket, and it had seen its better days. So, a new one. Too many choices, nothing like what I needed. Finally settled on a black leather tri-fold one with a neat little pull-out ID carrier. When I finally got all my junk crammed back into the new one after I got home, I discovered that I really didn’t want my driver’s license being in something that upon closer examination seemed awfully insecure. I want everything wrapped up in a nice neat bundle with nothing on the outside. But I’m not taking it back. It’ll wear out soon enough. No key cases, by the way. Lots of key rings, lots of gigantic trucker wallets with six feet of chain, lots of nothing that I needed. Oh well.

On to the restroom.

Then on to videos and games. Two games apiece--if there ever was a rip-off, it’s paying twenty or thirty bucks for a circuit board and a hunk of plastic the size of a matchbox whose only utility is damaging your eyesight and building up gigantic thumbs. Battle for Bikini Bottom is pretty fun, though. And oddly enough, Galaga translates pretty well to the small screen. AHHH!! What am I saying!?

Anyway, somewhere in Electronics I remember that we were supposed to be meeting someone at the front of the store about twenty minutes earlier. Meandered back up and found no one, so we looked at books for a while. Catherine found a Dora the Explorer book with an annoying voice recorder on it and a Disney Cinderella book with three tubes of glitter paint. Glitter paint is the bane of my existence. Long after I am gone, archeologists will dig me up and wonder what sort of ceremonial significance the tiny flakes of sparkly stuff on my scalp could have had. Word of advice, parents--DON’T DO GLITTER!

Finally the other members of the Away Team walked up--“Did you not hear our page?” Nearly biting my tongue in two to keep from spouting off the obvious smart-alecky comebacks, I simply said “Oops, no--sorry,” thus cheating certain death yet again.

Finally got all finished up and checked out--surprisingly smoothly considering we were using six different gift cards. I’m sure the people behind us didn’t mind a bit.

Then, on to the next place.

BUT, not before forgetting that we had left film in the one-hour photo. This created its own dilemma--we were already on the interstate when we remembered. The final decision was to circle around to the house, unload the loot, then drop back by the pharmacy to pick up the prescription we were supposed to have picked up Friday afternoon but forgot, then loop back up to Wal-Mart to get the film, THEN go to the next set of stores.

Fine--home, unload, Wal-Mart, interstate.

Along about the exit, I turned to Reba, “You know what?”

“We forgot to go by the drugstore.”



Anyway, next--THE MALL!

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