Saturday, September 29, 2007

My first poll

I've been wanting to put a poll on my blog. I was waiting until I found a worthy question. Here it is!

Video One:

Video Two:

Friday, September 28, 2007

Seems I may be autistic

I'm not making fun of autism. I knew a couple who had 2 children with autism, and I can tell you it is tragic. However I do not believe 1 in 150 children has autism.

My mother taught special education for 27 years and had one autistic student. If autism were really that common, I would think she would have had more than one student with the condition.

The diagnosis of autism has gone the way of the diagnosis of ADD. I'm afraid it has become a fad and children are getting wrongly labeled. Also, those who purport that vaccines cause autism has done a great disservice to children. Childhood diseases like mumps are on the rise because of the hysteria and subsequent decision of parents to deny vaccines to their children.

Now there is an Autism Quotient test where adults can see if they have autistic traits. I scored a 37 which puts me in the "very high" designation.

Any idea why I scored so high? I don't like parties, find small talk difficult and annoying, like a routine, and am able to block out distractions so that I can concentrate on a task. Sigh.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Think I need to go to the ER.....

.....and get some vicodin? Or maybe dilaudid? How about a work note?

Apparently between my new job (I've entered over 450 audiogram records manually into my audiogram software in the last 2 weeks) and my blog addiction, I have developed major eye strain from looking at computer screens. I've been having bad headaches, and my left eyelid has been twitching for 2 weeks and driving me NUTZ!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

To the reader who lives where the Burmese chickens roam free

I noticed on my Site Meter that someone in the town I grew up in has been visiting the past few nights. Hello fellow Hurricane and thanks for reading.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Free Speech

I believe in free speech. If I didn't, I wouldn't spend my time writing this blog. However, I think this is less about free speech and more about trying too hard to be shocking. You want to take on George W.? Be a man make a good argument. Don't be infantile and resort to gutter language because you can't think of anything more erudite to say.

Pardon me while I rant a minute

I spent a good portion of my day trying to help a patient with her medications. She just got out of the hospital after having 4 cardiac stents put in place. Her cardiologist put her on 4 name brand, very costly drugs. She is a contractor where I work and has no medical insurance. All told, her medicines cost a quarter of her gross monthly salary.

Have doctors never heard of the $4 prescription plan offered by several chain pharmacies? There are plenty of generic beta-blockers, calcium blockers and cholesterol medicines. She says she asked her doctor if there weren't some generic alternatives, and he told her no. Now, I realize I'm not a cardiologist, but surely some of these $4 drugs are just as effective as the pricey, brand-new, shiny drugs.

Of course, pretty drug reps in short tight skirts don't offer you glamorous trips to exotic locations for prescribing generics.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Two words.........


How my family found out how I met Unix-Jedi

To say that my family is conservative and religious would be an understatement. On my mother's side of the family we have 3 church treasurers, 1 church pianist and 1 church building manager. My parents don't just go to church every time the doors open, they have a key! My mom kept telling me that if I'd just go to church I would meet a nice young man.

Needless to say, I wasn't comfortable telling my parents or family how I met U-J. The internet was just too radical! So, when the subject of how we met came up, I'd either change the subject or stretch the truth and say we met through a mutual friend.

Now, U-J's parents knew how we met. As a matter of fact, his mother promised to pay for his membership in eHarmony. I was never really concerned that our parents would discuss how we met.

But I should have been.

<in Sophia Petrillo's voice>
Picture it, wedding rehearsal dinner, 2006. Family and friends are seated in the back room of a very nice restaurant. Wine is flowing, good food is being consumed, toasts are being given. And then it happens. U-J's mother arises from her seat, lifts up a glass in one hand and an envelope in the other. The envelope contains a check to pay for U-J membership to eHarmony and her toast contains the story of how we met.

All I have to say is, she better leave me something good in her will to make up for the teasing I endured that night and the next day from my family.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

The story of how Unix-Jedi and I met

When I turned 30, I decided to totally turn my world upside down.

I was living in a rural west Georgia town with a population of about 700 people working at a botanical garden. I'd been working there for 7 years and was getting nowhere with my career despite taking on tons of additional responsibilities and working my butt off.
Plus, upper management had changed 2 years prior and everyone was bailing ship. We lost 90% of the managerial staff in the horticulture department before it was over. (I was the 10th out of 13 people who left.) I began to look for other jobs in horticulture, but there wasn't much call for someone with a specialty in the native plants of Georgia. So, on a trip to visit my parents I came up with the idea to go to nursing school.

At the same time, I decided that too much time had passed without me dating. (There wasn't much to choose from in the town I lived in.) But the question was, how to meet someone. I was going back to college, but not too many guys go to nursing school, and chances were they would be far younger than me. I HATE going to bars because of all the smoke and noise and all the, well, people (yeah, I know, I was trying to meet people.) What about.......the internet?

I thought about it for a week or two. Finally, I decided to give it a shot. I did a little research and decided to try eHarmony. To my surprise, I met several nice guys. I dated some of them, but none for more than a couple of months. I also decided to try

One night I was browsing on and came along a guy who sounded interesting and sent him a message. I got nothing back. (Now, I fully expect U-J to have some things to say about that.) A few weeks later, guess who I got matched up with on eHarmony? It was the same guy who hadn't responded to me on And now he wanted to talk to me.

The mean girl came out in me, and I thought I'd get my revenge. So, the plan became to date him, make him really like me, and dump his ass.

I ended up marrying him 2 years later.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The Pain Scale

I hate the pain scale. What I hate more, is JCAHO for deciding that pain is the "5th vital sign."

Vital signs are vital for life. You must have a blood pressure to be alive. You must have respirations to be alive. You must have a pulse to be alive. You must have a body temperature to be alive. You DO NOT have to have pain to be alive.

BP, pulse, respirations and temperature can be measured quantitatively. Pain level is a quality of life measurement. For those of you who haven't been to the hospital or doctor's office in a while, the pain assessment goes like this:

On a scale of zero to ten, zero being no pain and ten being the worst pain you can have, where would you rate your pain?

So, what is an example of the worst pain you can have? It differs with everyone. And motivation often determines the answer.

In the health center I run, I find that there are 2 pain scales.

If motivation is to file a false worker's comp claim, the "worker's comp" pain scale doesn't go below an 8 and is often a 10.

If motivation is to be able to work and not get sent home or to the doctor for the day, the "working" pain scale rarely goes above a 5. The fact that Tylenol is the strongest thing I can give you for pain doesn't hurt (sorry for the pun.)

I wonder what JCAHO will decide is the 6th vital sign? I know, patient satisfaction!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Chuck Norris--'nough said

Can I just tell you how much I'm enjoying the Chuck Norris Fact Generator? If you haven't noticed it (how could you not!) check it out on the left side of my blog or you shall receive a round house kick straight to the face!

Butt what does it mean?

William the Coroner has been doing some blogging about body modification and what these modifications tell you about a person. So, I challenge you to tell me what this says about my former patient:

I was told in report that my patient didn't have a penis anymore. As if needing a penile implant wasn't bad enough, he got a post-op infection and his willy had to be amputated. So, as I headed to his room to do my assessment, I was confident that nothing else about this guy could rattle me. I go to lift up his gown assess his abdomen and what do I see......

.....a tattoo of a cat's butt with his bellybutton as the cat's butt hole.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

The easiest and bestest biscuits

Here's my recipe for the easiest and best homemade biscuits, EVAH.

2 Cups White Lily self-rising flour
1 Cup of heavy cream (may take a little more or a little less)
1/2 teaspoon sugar

Mix the flour and sugar in a bowl and stir in cream until you get a slightly sticky consistency. Place on a floured surface and kneed lightly until the dough comes together (only about 2 or 3 turns). Pat dough out to 3/4 of an inch and cut with a biscuit cutter. Place on lightly greased pan. Bake at 450 for 10 to 12 minutes.

One of the many reasons I love my job

One of the things I like most about my job as an occupational health nurse is that I don't have to deal with doctors on a daily basis anymore. I am limited in what services I can offer my patients, and I have protocols for the things I can do. I don't have to call in lab values or ask for additional pain medicine or put up with cranky doctors. Don't get me wrong, there are some very good doctors out there who are grateful for nurses, then there are a**holes like this:

I was charge nurse on the floor one night and inherited a huge stack of charts from the previous shift (charge nurse checked off all new orders in this wacky hospital.) I got to one chart where blood sugar checks were ordered every 4 hours. I looked back over my notes because I didn't remember getting information that the patient was diabetic. I checked her medical history. She wasn't. So I looked to see if she had been put on steroids. No.

Just then the doctor ordering the blood sugar checks walks by and puts another chart on my already towering stack.

"Doctor, can you tell me why this patient has blood sugar checks every 4 hours? She's not a diabetic and she's not on steroids."

"I know her history! Give me that chart!"

He scribbles something on the chart and hands it back to me in a huff.

What do I see? A new order for IV steroids.

You're welcome, a**hole.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

It's official.......

.....I'm addicted to my blog.

I was showing all the classic signs and symptoms:

Rushing home from work to look at the sitemeter to see how many people had visited today and where they live (I think it's sooooo cool that I have readers in Africa, Australia and New Zealand-not that I don't really appreciate my American and European readers.)

Lying awake at night wondering what to write about tomorrow.

Seeing something on TV or in another blog and thinking, "Oh, that reminds me of XXX, and I need to blog about it."

Posting 37 entries in less than a month.

But, I refused to admit I had a problem...until today. You see, last night I dreamed that Ambulance Driver was a patient. All I could think of was, "Ooo, now that he knows me, he'll send blog traffic my way."

My name is Dixie, and I'm addicted to my blog.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Nursing Vocabulary Lesson

Here's your vocabulary lesson from Crazy Nursing Teacher, as promised.

Homeostastication: the state of being good

a lifestyle characterized by little or no movement. Being sedimentary will make you fat.

Discomfortability: the inability to be comfortable

A system of exercises which help you control the body and mind

Now, let's put it all together:

If you have a sedimentary lifestyle, you should do yogurt to reduce your discomfortability and restore your body's homeostastication.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

I know I promised, but......

.......I'm really tired from work, so no vocabulary lesson from crazy nursing teacher today. I'll have it tomorrow, I swear!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

I think it is a requirement

I experienced deja vu reading this. There must be a requirement in every nursing program that you have one teacher that is bat-shit crazy. Maybe the schools are trying to prepare you to deal with psych patients. Anyway, let me tell you about my crazy nursing teacher.

Some of the more notable things this teacher "taught" us were:

1. People don't like feeling uptight like they are in a luggage.
I swear that is a direct quote.

2. Dealing with someone who has been on crack for 3 days straight, 24/7 is difficult.
Wouldn't that be 24/3?

3. Episcopalians don't eat mustard.
Guess they prefer mayo.

4. Drunk people often run off the road and hit telegraph poles.
Can you get a DUI while driving a horse and buggy?

5. You can look in someone's eyes and see the devil in them.
That must come in handy.

6. If you have sex you will get an STD and die.
Sister Mary Katherine, is that you?

Stay tuned. Tomorrow we will have a vocabulary lesson from crazy nurse teacher.

WANT! #2

Don't you think this would look great with the pink glock?

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Ferret + Beer = FUNNY

I was perusing Matt G's blog and this triggered a really funny memory that needs to be shared.

When I was in college (the first time around) my boyfriend decided I needed a ferret for my birthday. Why? I have no idea. So, Ferris the ferret came to live with us.

About the same time, my boyfriend decided that he would try making his own beer.

We were sitting in the living room resting after a long evening of bottling the latest brew.

Pop....pop....pop, pop, pop....pop, pop...........

"Honey, what was that?"

"Oh crap, we got too much carbonation in the beer and the tops are popping off."

We walk into the kitchen to see beer spilling out of the cabinet onto the floor and there's Ferris drinking his fill of home brew.

You want funny? You can't handle the funny of a drunk ferret. Imagine having a fur-covered miniature Jerry Lewis in your house. His usually lithe movements became clumsy. He staggered around the house forgetting where his litter box was and finally passed out in a corner full of ferret pee.

BTW, a hungover, piss-covered ferret is one mean SOB.

September 11. 2007

When I arrived at work today this is the first thing I noticed.

As a nurse I do TONS of paperwork. I must have written the date a hundred times today and a hundred times I was reminded what happened 6 years ago.

Monday, September 10, 2007

I know that I'm going to hell for this, but.....

Lab results confirm a deadly illness outbreak in southeastern Congo as Ebola fever, Health Minister Makwenge Kaput said on national television.

Am I the only one who finds the fact that the Health Minister's name is Kaput a tiny bit apropos?

You have GOT to be kidding me

For some reason I watched part of Getting In......Kindergarten, a show about what parents and kids in New York City go through to get into private kindergartens.

You remember kindergarten? The place where you colored, sang "The wheels on the bus go round and round....", took naps, learned to shoot milk through your nose......

Once you apply to the schools of your choice, the candidate, i.e. a 4 year old, is interviewed by representatives from the schools. Then the parents get the preschool little Johnny is currently in to lobby the kindergartens on behalf of the kid. Next, the parents must decide what to wear while hand delivering letters of intent to the schools. Finally, after all the interviews are done, all the outfits picked out and worn, the parents eagerly await letters from the schools. Tears are shed as the school of choice either rejects the kid or places them on the waiting list. Elation is felt when little Johnny is accepted to a suitable kindergarten.

And what does kindergarten cost? Apparently your kid can pick his nose, play tag and nap at the best private schools in NYC for the bargain price of $20,000 a year or more. But don't be dismayed, there are scholarships for kindergarten!

The pressure that is put on these kids is unreal. They are 4 years old. Does a 4 year old ego really deserved to be damaged by watching mommy and daddy cry because he "wasn't good enough" to get into kindergarten?

One of the grandparents had it right when she said her daughter should just move back to Wisconsin where kids can go to a good school for FREE.


Two dumb blondes were in their apartment when the fire alarm goes off and smoke begins to fill the room.

Dumb blonde #1 yells to dumb blonde #2, "Hurry, call 9-11."

Several seconds pass and DB #2 hasn't called. DB #1 screams, "What is taking you so long? Just dial 9-11!"

Helplessly DB #2 hollers back, "I would, but I can't find the eleven on the phone."

Here's to hoping you always remember 9-11.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Here's what's cooking

U-J and I have a garden. Suddenly we not only have a ton of tomatoes, we have a ton of peppers. So, last night I decided to make some pepper relish.

2 cups of mixed peppers chopped (we had banana, pimento and bell peppers)
one medium vidalia onion chopped
3 gala apples chopped
2 stalks of celery chopped
4 cups white vinegar
1 cup sugar
4 tsp kosher salt

Bring to a boil for 45 minutes. Makes 1 and a half quarts.

U-J says it's good on hotdogs.

Is this terrorism?

Has anyone else noticed a pattern here?

March 2007 pet food companies begin recalling products containing contaminated Chinese vegetable proteins.

June 2007 customers are advised to avoid using toothpaste made in China because it may contain a poisonous chemical used in antifreeze.

June 2007 the FDA imposed import restrictions on five types of Chinese-raised fish, because many have been found to contain chemicals that pose health risks, including long-term cancer risks.

August 2007 toys made in China are recalled because they contain paint with high levels of lead.

So in the last 6 months the Chinese poisoned our pets, then the hygienic and ichthophagic (ok, I made that word up) and now they are trying to poison our kids. Acts of terrorism, you tell me.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Define: liberal

U-J and I were watching part of an interview with Michael Moore on 20/20 tonight. The idiocy that MM was spouting made me remember something my father has always said:

The definition of a liberal (you may substitute democrat here) is someone who has never been affected by the problem.

Just for Terrorists?

Where do you get Just For Men when you live in a mountain cave?

We have weird dogs

For dinner tonight our puppies dined on apples, pineapple, lettuce, tomatoes, celery and bell pepper.

The Dachshund only ate the apple and pineapple then finished it off with cat poop. ICK.

The Black Lab and Catahoula mix ate EVERYTHING.

We have yet to find a vegetable or fruit (that is safe for canine consumption) that the Catahoula won't eat. Other things he likes include squash, zucchini, cabbage, broccoli, carrots, strawberries, cranberries, potatoes, sweet potatoes, watermelon, green beans....

I wouldn't be surprised if he became a vegetarian, took up yoga and started driving a hybrid.

I wonder what Unix-Jedi will score.......

Stolen without shame from CrankyProf says I'm an Uber Cool Non-Nerd.  What are you?  Click here!

P.S. U-J is a Dorky Nerd King! Guess opposites do attract.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

I know I shouldn't have said it, but....

The summer between my junior and senior year of nursing school I worked as an apprentice nurse on a Med/Surg floor. One of my most memorable days on that floor was not memorable because of the patient, but rather his wife.

After report was over, I beebopped myself in to Mr. Jones' and Mr. Smith's room. Mr. Smith was downstairs having a fem-pop b
ypass. Mr. Jones and his wife were waiting for him to get called down for his surgery.

"Good morning. I'm Dixie. I'm a nursing student and I'm working with Nurse Ann today. Is there anything I can do for you?"

Mrs. Jones immediately lays into me.

"Yes, I want my husband in a private room. I called this hospital 3 months ago and reserved a private room for my husband. Not only did he not get a private room, he was assigned to a room with a black man!"

"I understand that you are unhappy with your husband's room assignment. The hospital does not take 'reservations' for private rooms, rather you may request a private room. If one is not available you will be placed in a semi-private room until a private room is available. I will be happy to put you on the list for a private room. Additionally, room assignments are not made based on race. Is there anything else I can do for you?"

"Not right now, just make sure you put our name on the list for a private room."

"Consider it done. I'll be back in a little while to check on you Mr. Jones."

I finish checking on patients and find Nurse Ann (who happens to be black) to give her an update on our patients and find out what she needs me to do.

"I put Mr. Jones on the list for a private room. His wife is VERY unhappy that he is in a semi-private room."

"Thanks, I'll be by to check on him in a minute. Please let him know that his surgery is scheduled for 11:00am."

So, I head back to Mr. Jones' room.

"Mr. Jones, I have put you on the list for a private room. Nurse Ann asked me to tell you that your surgery is scheduled for 11:00am. She'll be in to see you in a few minutes. Is there anything else I can do for you?"

Again Mrs. Jones lays into me.

"I walked down the hall and there is an empty private room 3 doors down. Why can't we have that one? I did call 3 months in advance to reserve a private room."

"Yes ma'am there is an empty private room a few doors down. That is an isolation room. It has a special air system in it. We are required to keep one isolation room open if possible in case we get a patient who needs it. We can not put a non-isolation patient in that room."

"But I reserved a private room............and my husband is in here with a black man......and waaaaaaaa........why can't we have that room?"

"As I explained, that room is for patients who require special isolation. It is not a regular private room. It is reserved for patients who have contagious diseases like TB or patients who have a very low immunity because of chemotherapy."

At this point Nurse Ann walks in and wants to know what the problem is. I explain the problem, and she reiterates what I have just said to Mrs. Jones.

I can see the anger in Mrs. Jones' eyes. Not only is her husband in the room with a black man, his nurse is black. I fully expect her to ask for another nurse, but surprisingly, she doesn't.

Finally around 11:00 Mr. Jones goes down for his surgery and I know that I'm going to have a few hours of peace while Mrs. Jones is downstairs in the surgery waiting room. Oh NO. She decides to wait in his room where she can see patients coming and going. Every time she sees a patients who appears to be going home she finds me and asks me if that person was in a private room and if her husband can have the room. I try to avoid her as much as possible. But, Mr. Smith comes back to the floor from having his surgery and he has to be checked on frequently.

Mr. Smith is one of the nicest, quietest patients I have ever had. He has no visitors making noise, he doesn't turn the TV on, he even speaks in a quite voice. A person could not ask for a better roommate.

I have been checking on him about every 15 minutes to check for bleeding. I go to check on him again and the bed is RED. I hit the call button and say that Mr. Smith has some heavy bleeding and I need a nurse, fast.

As I'm putting pressure on his leg to slow the bleeding I hear from the other side of the curtain, "Miss, the remote isn't working on this TV. Can you go get me another one?"

"Mrs. Jones, I am busy with Mr. Smith. I'll get you a new remote when I get a chance."

"But I want to watch TV now. Can't you stop what you are doing and get me another one."

I'm trying REALLY hard not tell the stupid racist selfish bitch to shut her pie hole.

"No. As a matter of fact I CAN NOT stop what I'm doing. You are just going to have to wait."

Luckily the calvary comes a few seconds later to help me with Mr. Smith.

The last room I go to at the end of my shift is Mr. Jones' room.

I looked right at Mrs. Jones and said, "By the way, I'm married to a black man."

It wasn't true, I wasn't even married, but the look on her face was priceless.

Rules to drive by

The only good thing about being at home sick today is that I don't have to get on the road and drive with a bunch of idiots. Just some notes and suggestions for those who can't drive to think about before I get back on the road:

1. Slower traffic keep RIGHT. This means YOU. I don't care if you are turning left in 10 miles. If you are the slowest thing on the road you need to drive in the right lane. You may get in the left lane when you get close to your turn. Ten miles from the turn is not CLOSE.

2. Driving up as close as you can to my bumper as fast as your hooptie will go will NOT make me drive faster. As a matter of fact, your actions may make me drive slower.

3. Do not start flashing your lights at me to get over when it is obvious that I can not. If there is a car in front of me, a semi beside me and you behind me, there is no where I can go. You will just have to wait.

4. You have these amazing things on your car called turn signals. Please use them.

5. If you can not drive, apply make-up, eat your breakfast and talk on the phone all at the same time AND stay in your own lane, perhaps you should limit yourself to just driving.

6. On passing--please do not pass me and then slow down to a speed slower than what I was driving. This will piss me off. Also, if I try to pass you, please do not speed up. This will piss me off more. Me passing you is not an insult or a challenge. It simply means that you are not driving as fast as I would like to travel, and I'd like to get in front of you so that I can drive a faster speed than you are currently driving.

7. If you can see that the road is clear for several miles except for my car, please do not pull out in front of me and drive 10 mph. If you are going to drive 10 mph, you are not in a hurry and can wait until I have driven by.

8. If traffic is backed up for miles and your exit is coming up, please just wait your turn in the right lane with the rest of us. Do not drive past all of us who have been waiting to get off the exit and then expect me to let you in. You are NOT special. And in fact, you are causing traffic to back up more.

Of course I know that no one who reads my blog would commit any of these driving faux pas. But, I'm sick and grumpy and complaining makes me feel better.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Things that are Southern.......

Saying y'all, sweet tea, magnolia trees, Spanish moss.

Today Whoopi Goldberg defended Michael Vick saying that dogfighting is "part of his cultural background" and that it's "not an unusual thing for where he comes from."

I guess Ms. Goldberg doesn't know that the first place dogfighting started in the U.S. was New York and some of the cities where dogfighting is most prevalent are Detroit, Chicago, Los Angeles.....

Dogfighting isn't cultural or regional. There is no excuse for killing, torturing, electrocuting, drowning or beating dogs for sport, I don't care where you grew up.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Subprime mortages = Darwinism at work

U-J and I bought a house a little less than a year ago. Before we started looking seriously at houses, we sat down and did a little math. We took what we both made, subtracted out monthly expenses, looked at what was left over, and decided how much of that we wanted to spend a month on a house. We took that number, plugged it into a mortgage calculator and determined what maximum price house we could afford. We only looked at houses that were at or below that price. Simple, no?

Could we have purchased a bigger, fancier house than the one we have? Sure. It's called a subprime mortgage. For the same monthly payment we make now ,we could have a house that cost twice what our costs. Problem is that the low payment only lasts for a few years and then the payment skyrockets.

Poor owners of subprime mortgages, they were tricked! Why were they "tricked"? Because they were greedy, stupid, wanted to keep up with the Joneses--take your pick. Again, it goes back to the need for instant gratification.

Who wants to work and save for years to buy a $500,000 home when you can get one now for the low monthly mortgage of $1000 a month? Sure, the payment is going to quadruple in 2 years, but that is 2 years from now. In the meantime, we can use all that extra money to buy 65" plasma TVs and new furniture, go to Disney World--life is good!

Then when the 2 years of living high is up, subprime mortgage owners face foreclosure. And I'm supposed to feel sorry for them and want the government to help them out. Sorry, that is as likely to happen as me stopping a lion from preying on the slowest, weakest gazelle in the herd.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Want another Dan story?

One fine Saturday Dan was late to work. Of course we couldn't call his house to find out what was up 'cuz he didn't have a phone. So, we went about our work and waited.

Several hours after Dan was due to arrive at work he walks into the shop looking a little frazzled.

"Where ya been?"

"I had car trouble."

Knowing that about every 2 weeks he had a flat tire which he replaced with yet another $20 retread, I didn't probe further.

"Well we're glad you are okay."

"Did you know that you have to change the oil in a car?"


"My car caught on fire. When I got it into the shop the guy said it was because I didn't have any oil in the car. He wanted to know how long it had been since I had checked or changed the oil."

You know I had to ask.

"So you have never checked or changed the oil in your car?"


"How long have you owned the car?"

"Ten years."

"I'm sorry, let me get this straight. You have had the car for 1o years and never changed the oil? Never, ever?"

"No one ever told me you had to do that...."

Apparently a Chrysler can run for 10 years on the same oil if there is an idiot behind the wheel.

George Strait had it right

North Korea Agrees To Disable All Nuclear Facilities By End of Year.

If you believe that, I've got some ocean front property in Arizona to sell you.

I need insulin

These puppies are too sweet!

Saturday, September 1, 2007

No, no, NO

U-J and I were watching college football. One of the players was named Knowshon. Which led me to this site: The Baby Name Inventor. Sigh.

Just what we need. A site that helps you give your child a stupid name.

Good news, bad news

The good news is that Julio is back! The bad news is that the Braves are now 6 and a half games behind the Mets.

Economics of being poor

Unix-Jedi sent me this article: The Poverty Business: Inside U.S. companies' audacious drive to extract more profits from the nation's working poor. In reading it I was reminded of a guy I worked with while I was in college. I'll call him Dan.

I was 21 and working in a flower shop while I was going to a major university to get a degree in Horticulture. (I have a bachelor's degree in Horticulture, too.) One slow Saturday those of us working were talking about movies. Dan starting talking about the new VCR he had just gotten from a Rent-to-Own store. Yes, I said VCR, I'm old.

"Why would you rent-to-own a VCR?"

"Well, my wife is home all day with the baby and she wanted something to do, and we can't afford to buy a VCR. So I went to the place where we are renting all our furniture and got one."

"So, how much are you paying for the VCR?"

"Oh, only $7 a week."

"For how long?"

"Only a year."

"So, at the end of a year you will have paid $364 for a $100 VCR. Why don't you just save the $7 a week for 3 and a half months and go to Wallyworld and buy a VCR?"

"Well, we need one now. Plus, if my wife finds out I'm saving money she'll spend it."

Another conversation later that day:

"Did you get the phone turned back on at your house?"

"No, I decided not to have it turned back on because if I do the wife just talks to her mom all day long distance and then I can't afford to pay the bill."

"Have you explained to her that she can only use the phone for local calls and the occasional call to her mom?"

"Yes, but if the phone is on she'll just call her mom anyway."

"So, your wife and kid are at home all day in a house without a way to call 911 if there is an emergency because your wife can't understand that she can't call long distance and run the bill up?"


I just shook my head and went back to work.

These people aren't poor because companies are taking advantage of them. They are poor because they have a need for instant gratification, consequences be damned.

No wonder it is one of my favorite books

Shameless stolen from MonkeyGirl.

You're To Kill a Mockingbird!

by Harper Lee

Perceived as a revolutionary and groundbreaking person, you have
changed the minds of many people. While questioning the authority around you, you've
also taken a significant amount of flack. But you've had the admirable guts to
persevere. There's a weird guy in the neighborhood using dubious means to protect you,
but you're pretty sure it's worth it in the end. In the end, it remains unclear to you
whether finches and mockingbirds get along in real life.

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at the Blue Pyramid.