Teriyucki or Clean Up on Aisle 37

I love a good teriyaki sauce.  So does my family.  And we use enough that I buy it in a huge Costco sized bottle.

I was at Costco last Friday, about half way through my shopping, and I picked up one of those huge bottles of teriyaki sauce.  I used both hands.  But, I made the mistake of grabbing it by the lid.

It’s such a short distance from pallet to cart.  What could possibly go wrong?  Plenty.

I almost had the sauce in my cart.  I’m not even sure what happened.  Maybe my grip wasn’t the best.  Maybe I was distracted.  Who knows.  But before the happy, half-gallon sized concoction of sweet and tangy could land in my cart, it slipped out of my hands and crashed to the floor.

Costco has cement floors.  Hard cement floors.  These are not conducive to cushioning a plastic bottle of teriyaki sauce.

The bottle landed right side up.  Unfortunately, the pressure of the drop caused a volcanic effect.  The lid burst off, the protective liner popped, and a fountain of teriyaki burst forth.  Then, it tipped on its side.


I stood there, stunned.  An older couple was walking down the aisle coming the opposite way. They witnessed the whole thing.  The man started laughing.  The woman hit him in the shoulder and said,”That’s not very nice!”

He sobered up a bit then said, “Dont worry, I won’t tell anyone.  You can walk away and no one will ever know.” Then he winked conspiratorially.

I looked down at my shoes and pants and said, “Well, I think my shoes and pants say otherwise.”  More guffaws.  More beratings.  I righted the bottle in a futile attempt to spare some of the floor.

I walked away as quickly as my sticky teriyaki strewn shoes could carry me trying to find an employee.  Not meeting anyone quickly, I ran to the front of the store.

Along the way, I felt something wet on my rear end.  “No,” I thought, “not possible.”  I gingerly reached my finger back.  It came back wet.  And sticky.  And sweet and tangy.  Yep.  The volcano had even reached my rear.

I ended up checking out as quickly as possible and informing the cashier of my spill He called for a clean up.

I drove home with my sticky feet on the pedals, my old seat cover wadded up under my rear to protect my upholstery.  I had a phone conversation with my mom on the way home, asking if the brand of shoes I was wearing would wash well.  She told me they would, after lots of laughter over my story.

I came home, dashed to the laundry room, took off my shoes, my socks, my pants, even my underwear and my jacket and threw them all in the washer.

I grabbed a dirty towel from the laundry room, wrapped it around my waist and yelled up the stairs to my son, “Close your eyes!”

“What?” he said.

“Just do it!  I don’t have any pants on!”  I pleaded.

The second male in a span of fifteen minutes began to guffaw.  “I thought you were just going to Costco!  How could you possibly lose your pants?”

Teriyucki, my good boy.  Teriyucki.  41g-5lmh7l


Gas Pump Boogie

I am guilty of doing some strange things while I pump gas. No, I haven’t tried to see if I can actually use static electricity to start a fire though I’ve been mildly tempted. But, I guess I get bored when I’m pumping gas.

My obsession with being a little off normal at the pump started when my kids were little. I would put in the pump, stare off into the distance, then randomly make faces at them through the window. Turn away again, turn back and have a different funny face at the ready. Lots of giggles and smiles came my way, so I still keep it up. My seven-year-old and four-year-old still laugh. My older two either roll their eyes or try to come up with a face that will outdo mine. Pumping gas is entertaining.

But, the other day, I found myself with no one in the back seat to make faces at. I only had my oldest in the front seat, and he couldn’t see my face, so my usual form of entertainment was not an option. Apparently, I can’t just hold a gas pump and just stand there. So, I found myself listening to the the gurgling sound as the gas whooshed into my tank.


The next time you pump gas, listen to it come out. It actually has a nice rhythm. One I couldn’t help but dance to. I found myself swaying my hips back and forth, and nodding my head up and down to the sic beat of the gas pump. My unoccupied hand might have even gotten in on the action, though I won’t confirm or deny that.

I guess I forget when I’m in public everyone can see me. Three men in a pick-up truck pulled up behind me and doubled over laughing when they saw my sashaying behind. Luckily my tank was filled before any of them could get their phones out or I might have been the next youtube sensation.

I only hope you can also appreciate the subtle rhythm of the gas pump; it will amuse you, and those around you, if you can.

My Writing on Another Site!

One of my former blog posts is up on a website called knowerly.com. They take first-hand experience stories about all sorts of health, financial, legal, and senior care topics. If you have such a story, check them out. They will pay you for your story and picture as long as you can back up your story with evidence it really happened to you.

Though they changed it somewhat to edit out a lot of the overly snarky humor, I am still thrilled to be paid for my writing, even if it’s just this article for now. Head on over to knowerly.com to view my article here: http://www.knowerly.com/stories/53d6a95d466f726b8c8d0100-My-Misconceptions-About-LASIK-Eye-Surgery. While you are there, make sure you find it helpful. I’m kind of competititve and would like mine to be the most “helpful” of all. And, if you want to check out my original, go to: http://wp.me/p3o4ZY-3 .

Three Stalls, Three Repairs, Two Tows, and One Woe of a Day

I had lots of plans for yesterday. None of them happened. And none of them included being stranded somewhere on the side of the road or in a parking lot from 9 AM to 5:30 PM. Yet that’s what I did.
It all started when my hubby decided to drive the boat in to be fixed. It was still hooked up to the motorhome from boating on Saturday. The boat quit going into forward, so it needed to be fixed. My hubby took the entire rig, intending to drop the boat off to get repaired and then go on his merry way to work. Instead, I got a phone call at 8 AM saying the motorhome was having the exact same problem we’d paid a whole ton of money to get fixed just last fall.
So, I drove to my mother-in-law’s house, picked up her van which can tow the boat, and went to rescue hubby on the side of Highway 89. I pulled up, put the hazard lights on the van, and we proceeded to talk about what to do about the motorhome. After many tries of getting it to move, we just unhooked it from the boat trailer and took out the cell phones, trying to get someone to tow and fix our motorhome.
Do you have any idea how hard it is to get people to tow a 28 foot long motorhome? It took dozens of phone calls, by us and by wonderfully helpful relatives, each one sending us to someone else who might be able to tow something that size but acutally couldn’t. We finally found a place and gasped at the price. A few more calls, and nothing else panned out so we went with the one we found.
Of course, by that time, it was almost noon. The tow truck finally arrived, took awhile to hook us up and drove away with our forlorn looking vehicle attached. I was so relieved, sad, and just plain tired by that time, but I knew we had more to do. We were tasked with still hooking up the van to the boat and taking it to the repair shop.

Only, the van, the one we’d used as our hazard lights, now had a dead battery. We knew that might happen, so we’d started it and revved it several times, but apparently that wasn’t enough. After another round of phone calls, my brother-in-law who happened to be at lunch right there brought his car and jumper cables. At around 1:45, we were finally on our way.

We took the boat in, got it dropped off and then went to the DMV to get the decals for our motorhome registration that had never arrived in the mail. After some wonderful moments in AC, we went back out to start my mother-in-law’s van again. Only, it wouldn’t start. No, I am not kidding you. It wouldn’t start, and it wasn’t just the battery this time.
We called my mother-in-law’s insurance, and they wouldn’t authorize anything for us. They needed her. But her cell phone was busy. So, we just left the van and walked over to get some food finally at around 3:45 PM. As we inhaled our burgers, fries, and drinks, we wondered what the odds were that someone would need two vehicles towed in one day.
Finally, after much rejoicing and many more phone calls, we got a tow, our second tow of the day. The tow truck driver let us ride to the repair shop which was conveniently down the street from our house. I finally walked in to greet my kiddos after leaving them at just after 8:30 that morning.
Though it was a hard day, I still was blessed. Blessed that my kids weren’t with me and that my twelve-year-old was capable of handling them with only minor mishaps. Blessed that my neighbors, relatives, Gerry’s co-workers and even a couple strangers were so willing to help us out of a tough situation. Blessed to have the vehicles in the first place, even though a 1987 boat, a 1991 motorhome and a 1994 van are not the most reliable of transports. Blessed to have a husband who didn’t have the nervous breakdown that I know he wanted to have. And blessed to be kept safe and sound even with all the oversized loads (two) and strings of semis that came our way. So though I was going to file this one under woes, I may still file it under wonders

Physical Therapy Guinea Pig

For what seems like our entire marriage, my husband’s world has been physical therapy, so it has become mine also. First, I helped him apply to schools. Then, I helped him study for tests and boards. After his first job and since, I’m privileged to listen to his patient success stories. But always throughout, I’ve been his physical therapy guinea pig; and somehow, we’re still married.
It started when he was in school. He would come home from class and practice all sorts of techniques on me, all the while commenting things like, “Wow, you’re not really very flexible, are you?” or “You can’t move my arm any more than that?”

My hubby likes to keep on learning, so I was his guinea pig once again after a recent continuing education conference. This one was on gait.

Gait?” I thought when I found out. “Great, now he’ll tell me exactly how much I remind him of a duck when I walk.” But, I smiled and off we went.

“First,” he asked me, “just do your normal walk.” I proceeded to walk across the living room. “Hmm, you’re not doing it quite right.”

“What do you mean I’m not doing it right?” I demanded. “You asked me to walk like I always do. I can’t do my own walk wrong! It’s my own regular walk.”

“Sorry, that’s not what I meant,” he back peddled. “You just don’t have an entirely efficient gait. Most people don’t. You need to swing your arms and rotate your trunk more.”

“But then, I’ll look like a freak! I am not doing that.”

“If you want to walk efficiently…” at the look on my face, my hubby must have decided it was time to move on. “Never mind. Let’s try some different ways of walking and see if I can detect any injuries or weaknesses.”

I don’t know about you, but I don’t like someone staring at me trying to ferret out “weaknesses”. This was our date night for the week, mind you. We are party animals.

He proceeded to have me swing my arms in different ways while I walked, take long or short steps, turn my toes in or out, and keep my legs close together or far apart until I felt more like a moving game of twister than a physical therapy patient.

On the last gait, my ankle began to throb, the ankle which I had hurt about 10 days prior and neglected to tell him about (mainly because I had stepped on my own shoe which he has constantly warned me is a hazard because I don’t put it away properly).

I told him my ankle was hurting.

“That’s great!” he exclaimed.

My silent response was colder than my hind end when I went skiing last time.

Not wanting to be turned to stone by my gaze, he quickly and sincerely said, “I mean, it’s just nice that I get to actually work on someone who has a problem. It’s fun to see things in action and try the techniques he was talking about today. I’m not glad you got hurt, though. How did you do it?”


Now it was my turn to look a little sheepish. I had to confess my shoe mishap. He continued on sans the lecture I was expecting, showing me exercises to do and how do to them so that my ankle would be properly healed and my gait would return to normal, or as “normal” as my gait ever is anyway.

I don’t mind being my hubby’s guinea pig, really. I get a kick out of his enthusiasm. I like to help and support him in his goals; he always helps and supports me in mine. And lucky for him, he didn’t make one reference to waterfowl the entire time; and, my ankle’s as good as new, just like our marriage

Accio Ketchup

I have two rabid Harry Potter fans. My eleven-year-old finished the books about a year ago and practically sobbed when he didn’t get his Hogwarts letter his last birthday. My nine-year-old has read six of the books since New Year’s. She has already cracked the 7th.

Harry Potter lingo has started to creep into our family’s dialogue without my noticing. This was brought to my attention at dinner the other night.

My two-year-old wanted some ketchup. She stood up on her chair, pointed her hand with her imaginary wand in it (which I’m sure contains a dragon heart’s string core), and shouted “Accio Ketchup!”

Yes, that is how she thinks everyone asks for something to be passed to them at the table. Because, for the past few months, that is how my oldest two have been asking each other to pass things around the table. My five-year-old even gets in on the act. Even hubby and I have been known to use “Accio” as a request to have something passed to us.


Of course, we complied. The ketchup magically flew directly into my two-year-old’s hand. I swear she know some other spells as well, Reducto being the most prevalent one she uses. At least it feels like everything she touches get blasted to smithereens. Now, if only I can perfect my petrificus totalus to use on her at bed time.

HI, My Name Is Married with Four Children

I went snowboarding/skiing this past weekend with my hubby and son. That is to say, my husband went snowboarding, my son went skiing, and I looked rather like I was trying to get an ironing board with a mind of its own to cooperate and swish down the mountain.

The morning was gorgeous. Fourteen inches of fresh powder over the past 48 hours and very few crowds, which basically meant that every time I fell, I only injured myself and not others. It was perfect. After we got back from our jerky and Pringles lunch, a huge crowd had begun to form next to the lift. We found out that a local university had sent up the entire campus for a lesson. At least it looked that way. Each instructor had about twelve to fifteen undergrads waiting to be taught how to slide, hopefully in control, down a mountain with either one large piece of fiberglass strapped to both legs or two smaller pieces of fiberglass strapped to either leg.

On a certain run, my hubby suggested that we take an intermediate slope rather than a beginner’s slope to try and avoid the crowds. I went considerably faster than my son. He is cautious; I simply swooshed down the slope however my board would take me, heedless of the consequences. My hubby stayed with my son. So, I found myself going along by my little lonesome. I was using the snowboard snowplow, or falling leaf technique. I actually haven’t learned to do anything else, but it gets me down the mountain, and I have fun. Still, I do make wide, sweeping turns, sometimes going where people don’t expect me to. Sometimes right into an undergrad’s path, apparently.

One of the local university guys was on skis for the first time, right behind me. I was in front of him, so he should have seen me. He did see me; he just didn’t know how to stop. His skis went over my board. He did a not-so-graceful somersault into me and I landed on my rear end.

I apologized. He apologized. Then he said, “Hey, this is not the typical way to meet girls, but maybe it’s a good way. My name is Scott. What’s yours?”

I couldn’t believe I was getting hit on by someone at least ten years younger than I am, and right after he’d plowed into me no less. To be fair, I was in a helmet and goggles, gloves on my hands so no ring was visible. So it’s not like he could really tell what I looked like. Otherwise, I’m sure he would have skied the other way as fast as his non-skiing legs could have carried him. As it was, I smiled a big smile and said, “My name’s Andrea. I’m married with four kids, so maybe this isn’t the best way to meet girls after all.”

Then, I got up swooshed down the mountain and chuckled all the way to the lift. I saw Scott later, skis in hand, walking down the slope. I hope my comment didn’t ruin his skiing day. Because his comment kind of made mine. Thanks, Scott, whoever you are. You made my recalcitrant ironing board feel like a royal carriage.