Saturday, May 15, 2010

Road Rage

I have a little road rage problem. When I sit my fat butt in the driver's seat and put my hands on the steering wheel, I instantly become an impatient, immature, asshole. On a side note here, I think "asshole" is the most politically correct slur to use on any given occasion should you feel the need to be politically correct which even I, at times, am forced to do. You can even preface it with "effing" and it's still gender neutral, racially neutral, politically neutral and since I am certain that every faith in the world has their fair share of assholes as members it is religiously neutral as well. If you preface it with the "eff" word, though, be prepared to be on the receiving end of many a raised eyebrow. Happens to me all the time.

Anyway, for some unknown reason, as soon as I get in the car, I'm in a hurry. When I get in the car my main goal is to get from Point A to Point B in the shortest amount of time. My son would argue this because he says I take the long way everywhere. It's my opinion while that may be true, I'm avoiding stop lights, stop signs, and heavily trafficked areas so even though I may be traveling a longer distance I get there quicker. That's my story and I'm stickin' to it. Not only do I hate being politically correct, I hate waiting.

So here's the way it goes. I start out fat, dumb, and happy, going to the store for ice cream (which I'm convinced is the most wonderful food on the planet), which is on my shopping list, which is sitting on the table where I wrote it, which is what I do every effing time I go grocery shopping. Unknowingly list-less, I get in the car and head out. I always try to get these chores done either in the morning or evening. Why? So I don't have to deal with traffic, lines at the store, or any of the gazillion things that easily annoy me. Since I live in a fairly rural area, there's not a lot of traffic starting out. Occasionally you get behind a cement truck or some other slow moving equipment hauling apparatus but I can usually make pretty snappy time en route to the "main" road. Here I confess yet another of my many, many, many faults...I drive too fast everywhere (except when I'm hauling horses and/or someone else's kids).

Now after five or six miles of blissful rage free travel, I'm at the "main" road and my first of many potential annoyances. A stop sign where I'm forced to make the dreaded "left had turn into oncoming traffic". I know this is truly stoopid but I have, on occasion, planned my daily stops around right hand turns in order to avoid the dreaded "left hand turn into oncoming traffic". I know, I can't help it.

You see, I don't judge distance well. It's another little "problem" of mine. So I know I incur the wrath of many a poor schmuck whose misfortune it is to be stuck behind me at stop signs while waiting a seeming eternity for me to make the dreaded "left hand turn into oncoming traffic". I know this because I can see them in my rear view mirror throwing their hands up off their steering wheel mouthing "Jeez lady, WTF are you waiting for?" Fellow schmucks of the world, I apologize. We are kindred spirits.

"Mouthing" is that thing you do when you're in the car and want to talk to another driver knowing there's not a chance in hell they can hear you but you still feel the need to communicate. I use "mouthing" frequently. Usually to mouth the words "I'm sorry" after making the dreaded "left hand turn into oncoming traffic", misjudging the distance, and forcing the guy in the blue Dodge Ram pickup to slam on his brakes and lay long black skid marks on the road in order to avoid t-boning me. I also try to accompany this "mouthing" with an appropriately sheepish look. Sort of, my bad, I know. It is, after all, the polite thing to do.

Next on my journey is another left hand turn, however this one is from a designated left hand turn lane so I only need to worry about traffic coming one way, hence, this is different from the dreaded turn. As fate would allow, now I'm the schmuck mouthing obscenities, stuck behind a little old lady in a beige Cadillac who is waiting patiently, hands on the wheel at ten and two, for the oncoming car that is CLEARLY two miles down the road. Another kindred spirit of sorts, this blue headed, pin curled, old lady (whom I would resemble without the constant attention of Crazy D, my hairdresser), but it's only in the recalling that I notice this. At the time I'm Impatient Patty because, dammit, I'm driving and I'm in a hurry. And it is all about me.Finally after years of waiting, she goes. About fucking time, lady (I mouth)...I don't think she noticed.

On my way again and clear sailing. One more left hand turn at where I'm delighted to be the only soul on the road and I now have a straight shot of roadway punctuated by a couple of stop lights, which have their place in my love/hate catalog of traffic annoyances, followed by the always welcomed right hand turns.

Say what you will but I love Walmart. They're cheaper than anywhere else and they always have an entertaining, albeit annoying at times, group of customers and employees. I get what I need and go.

Now I'm at a stop light to make a right hand turn. The light is red but I can still turn right as soon as Mr. Crappy Brown Ford P/U gets through the intersection. Oh, nice one Mr. Crappy Brown Ford P/U, no turn signal to let me know that you weren't going through the intersection but planned all along to turn right...I waited for nothing. Now I'm stuck, thanks to you, you moron, waiting for everyone across the intersection to take advantage of their now green left turn only light. In truth, my exact words were, "nice blinker you fucking moron". Which is actually pretty mild...for me.

Onward I travel. The next stop is blissfully uneventful. I get my groceries and head home. Now I'm on a mission. Since I now have ice cream it's full steam ahead, lest the ice cream start to thaw. If you're a true ice cream lover, that is the last thing you put in your cart before checkout. Partial thawing and re-freezing results in those horrible ice crystals. Take heart though, should find yourself stuck with crystallized ice cream, you can still use it to make milkshakes.

All in all, not a bad start to the day. There was one lady in a white Toyota who pulled out in front of me causing me to slam on my brakes, but since I didn't have an open soda at my lips ready to take a swig, there wasn't much drama. But the real reason I didn't get upset is because she had the common courtesy to mouth "I'm sorry" and look sheepish, to which I mouthed "It's okay" and waived.

Now, while I'm aware that my behavior is totally ridiculous, I kind of don't really care because I'm in the privacy of my own vehicle. I don't shout out the windows or make rude hand gestures of the middle finger variety, so for all anyone really knows, I'm just singing along with the radio. I may be turning the air blue inside my car with my verbal assaults on unsuspecting motorists but NOBODY KNOWS BUT ME. Okay, I'm probably offending God, but I bet He understands. It's the stoopidist thing...

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Bathroom Complaints

I work in a large local government building with over a hundred other women. The bathroom for the area I work has five, count 'em, five regular stalls and one large stall equipped for the handicapped. Let me correct myself..I mean physically challenged. Never say handicapped because it'll get you in big trouble with the higher ups. These are the days of political correctness you know. I hate being forced to be politically correct.

This particular bathroom is a "fragrance free" area. Yes, thanks to the delicate sensiblities of one or two the entire department is forced to use facilities that reek of human waste. For them eau de feces is apparently preferable to a spritz of Glade. I will never understand this. As an added bonus the designers of this "environmentally correct" building, in their infinite wisdom, installed low flow toilets. I'm fairly certain that someone with a penis is responsible for this design. Two of the toilets have to be flushed at least ten times to get toilet paper to disappear down the drain. How is that environmentally friendly????? How does that save water??? You learn quickly which stalls are the "good flushers".

So one bright sunny morning I have to pee. Now that I'm old I feel obligated to attempt to be healthy so I'm drinking more water. That's a whole other story though. Anyway I head straight for the handicapped stall (oh shi$..I said it again) because it's roomier and seems more private and my elbows don't hit the wall. It's also a consistantly good flusher. So anyway, I make my way to my favorite stall, walk in, shut the door, and OMG there's SKID MARKS IN THE TOILET.

Now I'm in a quandary. There's other people in here. Do I turn around and leave? If I do that, I know that there's gonna be someone who sees me leave and they're gonna walk directly to the stall I just left and now for the rest of their life, this person's gonna think I'm the leaver of skid marks. Do you see my predicament?

By now my bladder is screaming so I can't wait any longer. I flush the toilet to make sure it's not been plugged by the previous pooper. It flushes fine (it's the good flusher, remember)but the skid marks remain glued to the porcelain. How is that possible? So I place the requisite sanitary shield over the seat, because my mother told me that there are lots of terrible things you can get from sitting on an uncovered toilet seat, and am finally able to pee.

Yet another quandary self created because now I've placed myself in the position of being a double flusher. And everybody knows that nobody double flushes unless they've pooped. I'm starting to get all sweaty and silently pray the skid marks will be gone with this third flushing (I'm counting the original flush by the previous pooper). Either the answer was no or I'm just unlucky. Skid marks are still there. At this point I'm actually kind of amazed by this. I decide to behave like a mature adult. I mean, this isn't high school. So what do I do?? I wait until everyone has left the bathroom before I leave. It seemed like hours but I'm sure it was just a few minutes. Why do I care about this??? What's wrong with me???

I don't think men care about stuff like this. Men, for the most part, don't worry about sweat marks under their arms and I don't think there's many who would let themselves endure significant cramping just to avoid farting. I've actually seen men boldly take reading material into an office bathroom. Never have I seen a woman do this.

Most of the woman I know consider pooping an at home duty and most would rather do anything than poop in public bathrooms. Inevitably, it's going to happen. What do we do? We "sneak a poop". Sad but true. You can always tell the sneak a poopers (I know whereof I speak). Sitting silently. Waiting patiently for the other occupants to either leave them in peace or at least start flushing to cover up the noise they're afraid they're going to make. If you happen to notice a sneak a pooper in the bathroom, make it snappy and leave them in peace. Most women, myself included, are really ridiculous about bodily functions.

Wouldn't it be great to be able to laugh about it? We did when we were kids. I'm obviously never going to outgrow the immaturity of thinking farts are funny. But never in a million years, in a public bathroom, would I laugh out loud, thereby letting the fart emitter know she had been heard. I really want to though.

It's the stoopidist thing.