Saturday, December 21, 2013

From Our Home to Your Home (or The Carol of the Mop)

Happy Holidays, gentle readers!  Have you missed me?  Of course, you have!  And what have I been doing?  Preparing for the Yuletide visit of my dearest sister, my darned adorable niece, and my quite wonderful brother-in-law!  How am I preparing? Oh, I'm so glad you asked! I have been cleaning and cleaning and decorating and cleaning and cooking and cleaning and trimming and cleaning and buying more things with which to, well, clean.

Anyway, I have written a Christmas carol to inspire myself in this endless task, and I have been singing it at full voice at 2am while polishing...everything.  Enjoy!

Rockin' around the Christmas tree

In my jammies with a mop.

The cobwebs hung where you could see,

Every corner at the top.

Rockin' around the Christmas tree,

Let the dust rag rub and swing,

Later I'll have some deep red wine,

And I’ll do some vacuuming.

You will get a slightly queasy feeling as you near,

Nostrils flaring, "Oh, by golly,

Bleach and Lysol drown out holly!"

Rockin' around the Christmas tree,

Have a spotless holiday,

Everything scrubbed and organized,

For part of one whole day!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Brief Conversation with Mom: Principles of Organization

Mom:  "Which stocking is Isabella's?"

Me:  "The one in the middle."

Mom:  "I can't remember that.  We need to put names on them."

Me:  "No, we don't.  I alphabetized them."

Mom:  "No you did not.  You cannot alphabetize Christmas stockings!"

Me:  "Yes, you can.  They go from left to right:  Gretchen, Isabella, Peter."

Mom:  "That is the stupidest thing I ever heard.  Did you alphabetize all of the decorations?"

Me:  "Of course not.  Some are organized by irony."

Mom:  "By what?"

Me:  "Irony.  It's why the Christmas mice are sitting on the cats' medieval castle."

Castle Mice for Christmas

Mom:  "There is something wrong with you.  Shut up now and fetch me the egg nog!"

Thursday, December 5, 2013

3 Shades of White

Hello, gentle readers!  I have returned, emerging from a long, dark grading period that has left me...well, kind of bouncy and overexcited, if you want to know the truth.  No, I have no idea what's wrong with me, but I'm all hyped up from my frenzy of essay reading and ready to take on the world...or at least put up the Christmas lights.

So this past weekend, I dug out the lights, plugged them in, cursed at the ones that had committed suicide in the basement over the summer, drove out to buy more, searched and searched and searched and finally found the extension cords and the timers and the little plastic thingies that I use to attach, well, things, and after three or four hours, this happened:

That's a snowflake in the window, not a flower.  Shut up.
Now, there I was, standing in my yard, looking at the results of all my labors, and do you know what I asked myself, beloved readers?  "Self," said I, "why are those lights blue?"  And as I pondered this question, I asked myself yet another:  "Self," persisted I, "why is that vertical strand kind of greenish?"  And, lo! my Self answered not, for I was stumped.

You see, on each of the boxes which contained these strands of lights was the word white.  I know, because I got out my flashlight, dug through the rubbermaid containers and checked.

No, I joke not.  I checked.

There was no green.  No blue.  No whitish.  No vaguely-pinkish-but-that-might-be-a-trick-of-the-camera.  No, my friends, on each and every box, spelled out quite clearly is the word white.  Now on one box, it is true, it says warm white.  Can you guess which strand had that rather comforting label?  Wrong!  It's the blue ones, which, I must tell you all, do not look even slightly warm to me.  In fact, that label seemed to be such an obvious mistake that I climbed upon the stepstool to touch the blue lights and see if by warm the manufacturer might be referring to temperature.

Yet again, I joke not.  Upon the stepstool I did climb. 

The blue lights remain cool.  They look cool, as blue so often does.  But do you know, precious ones, what those blue lights are not?  They are not white

Now, I know what you're thinking out there in cyberville.  You're thinking, "Oh you fool!  Have you never used LED lights before?  Did you not know that you have to buy exactly the same brand with the same label all at the same time to get matching lights, even if that means buying entirely new lights every single year?"  And to that I respond:  No I did not know that.  And I damn well wish I didn't know it now.  It has leeched much of the bounciness out of my spirit and thrown a whitish cloud of disappointment over the holiday season.

But after much shouting and whining and vaguely hostile cursing, I did eventually find a way to regain my jollity.

I bought a new shower curtain.