Friday, April 18, 2014

Thoughts From the Starbuck's Line

Today I made my usual Starbuck’s stop before picking Hudson up from school. I pulled up the window to pick up my tall Chai Tea Latte when the car in front of me suddenly stopped. A woman got out and visibly angry walked up to the window.

“You forgot my second cookie so you can go ahead and give me an extra one,” she said and stormed back to her car.

The confused clerk stuck his head out the window. “Excuse me?” Back she came to the window, this time slamming her hand on the windowsill to make her point.

“You forgot my second cookie. And since I had to get out of my car you can go ahead and give me an extra one.”

The clerk looked stunned. He went and got the cookies. She grabbed them and huffed back to her car.

By the time I rolled up to pick up my tea, he looked shaken. He handed me the wrong order. I could see his hands shaking.

“I think this is the wrong order.  It’s not a big deal, but I don’t want to take someone else’s drink,” I said with a smile on my face.  I didn’t want to add to his distress and really, it’s a Starbuck’s order.  It’s not like he amputated the wrong limb or something.

“I’m so sorry. I skipped an order on the computer. I’m sorry…”
“It’s ok. No problem.”
He handed me the correct order, this times his hands shaking worse than before.
“That was ridiculous back there.  I hope the rest of your customers treat you nicer today.”
“Thank you. I’m so sorry you had to listen to me…”
“It’s ok. That wasn’t your fault. Have a wonderful day!”

As I was putting my car in drive, I heard someone tell him that he had to have manager approval to give away an extra cookie. You could see the stress on his face building again.

I got angry. Angry that in about 20 seconds this thoughtless person ruined this poor man’s day. I’m sure as she drove off her goddamn free cookie she had no idea what she left behind. The shaking hands, the shaken confidence, the shit he was now taking for giving away a cookie just to make her happy.

I think in her mind she was probably just standing up for herself, but sometimes we get so caught up in standing up for ourselves that we miss the bigger picture. Outrage is great when it really matters.  But over a cookie?  That just makes you an asshole.

There are days that I wish I could change the world. I want to make it gentler and kinder. I wish there wasn’t so much violence. I wish there was more tolerance. I wish we took better care of the Earth. It’s frustrating to the things as you wish they could be and not be able to do anything about it. But this reminded me that we can. I may not be able to change the world, but I can change my environment, my community and the people I run into on a day-to-day basis. In a way, this lady at Starbuck’s reminded me of that.  She showed me far-reaching effects of a harsh word, but in that proved that I, we, could do the opposite with a kind one. The echo of a mean word is loud, but an act of compassion? I have to imagine that’s like yelling into the Grand Canyon.

The world grows what we put out into it.  I choose to grow kindness.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Safe Sex and Mass Murderers Go Hand In Hand

Oh, small town Oklahoma how I love you.

Taken in a gas station bathroom in Atoka…

Atoka, you’ve got it all figured out. What better way to get our young people to practice safe sex as well as enhancing good self-esteem and body image? Nothing says “I am confident in my manhood” like Bin Laden on your pecker. It also says “I’m not really right in the head, but I’ve got a good sense of humor…did I mention that I have Bin Laden on my pecker.”

Yes, the ladies will not be able to resist. That’s why it is so amazing that Bin Laden is only one of twelve! Who else could there be? Sadam Hussein? Hitler? William Howard Taft for the well-endowed? This condom machine offers hours of laughs and absolutely no sex.

Trust me on this one, guys. Listen, I know you’re already thinking of all the great pick-up lines to go with your politically incorrect condoms.

“President Johnson is in my pants and he’s dying to meet President Bush.”

“Speaker Boner is taking a vote. House Bill Let’s Get Freaky is expected to pass with bipartisan support.”

Just don’t. Look, I know it’s awfully tempting to run in the bedroom yelling, “Abraham Lincoln really IS the tallest president!” but you would be doing yourselves a disservice.

Women don’t want all that. Women just want things simple-a little romance and glow in the dark condoms like normal people.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

All the Shades of Gray

I call this series of photographs, "All the Shades of Gray" a study in indecision, in the medium of every gray paint sample found at Sherwin Williams, Benjamin Moore, and Lowe's.

I call this last one "Just picked one already before the divorce papers read irreconcilable differences in the argument of whether or not the gray is too blue".

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Celebrity Salad Gone Wild

My neighbor is better than your neighbor. I know you’re asking yourself why I would say such an obnoxious thing. My neighbor is a chef. She is a chef who frequently gives me food and the occasional cocktail. Once she made us cocktails in the middle of the afternoon, so unless your neighbor is handing out bags of money mine is better, end of story.

Yesterday she filmed a segment for News 6. She made kale and quinoa salad. I watched her kids while she was filming the segment and she gave me some of the salad in return.

My husband eats neither kale nor quinoa. I tried to convince him he should try it because this salad was famous and had been on TV, but he wasn’t having it. This brings me to my next point.

My salad is getting a bit out of hand. I think its celebrity status is getting to it.  Yesterday afternoon it started an Instagram account.

By the end of the day it was posting selfies to Facebook.

Seriously it’s out of hand. It’s in the front yard right now throwing red onion pieces at TMZ yelling, “I am a super food!” The whole thing started over a mispronunciation of the word quinoa. “It’s pronounced KEEN-WAH, assholes!” The whole thing is made even more awkward by the fact that it has taken to speaking in an affected British accent. We’re not even going to talk about the horribly derogatory remarks made about rainbow chard.

Oh damn. I have to go. My salad is yelling at me. Something about being in a plastic container and how it doesn’t “do plastic”.

I’m gonna have to eat this son of a bitch before things truly get ugly.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Make Sure You're Not The Asshole

This morning I woke up at 5:00 am.  Not because I wanted to, but because a damn dog in my neighborhood was barking. I was sleeping so well up until that point. I was sleeping like a baby that just took Nyquil and got a visit from that Lunesta butterfly.

I tried to will the dog to shut up with my mind. It did not work. I laid there for a few minutes thinking surely the owner would realize that their f-ing dog was waking up the neighborhood. Five minutes later, still nothing.

I cursed under my breath. What is wrong with people?  If my kids wake up, I’m sending them to that douche bags house and letting him watch my kids for the next few hours. What kind of asshole lets their dog bark at butt-crack-of-dawn o’clock for this long?

Then it hit me.


Did I let Cooper in last night?

I got up to check the dog bed. No dog. I checked the living room. No dog. I opened the back door.

“Cooper?” I half whispered. And there he came prancing around the corner from the side yard looking mighty pleased with himself.

Well. Turns out, I’m the asshole.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

I Hope You Are Wrong

This was the fortune of the girl who just moments before rubbed a forkful of noodles on her face. This was the fortune of the girl who prompted me to say, "Hang on! You've got a noodle on your elbow." This was the fortune of the girl who about 5 minutes before prompted me to say, "Seriously, you don't have to take off your shoes to pee...or all of your clothes."

I hope you're wrong, fortune cookie.  For the sake of parents everywhere, I hope you are wrong.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

About That Day I Talked To The FBI

“A Special Agent with the FBI is trying to get a hold of you,” said my father-in-law over the phone.

Damn it!  I knew I shouldn’t have recorded that VHS of Batteries Not Included! They were not kidding with those warnings. I should have known it was only a matter of time before the law caught up with me.

“He said it was in regards to your purse that was stolen 2 years ago.”

Oh. Guess the slammer will have to wait.

Two years ago we were in the middle of selling our house. I got a call for a last minute showing.  I loaded up the kids and dog and we went to the park for about 30 minutes. Sometime in that 30 minutes someone broke the window and stole my purse out of the car. I reported it to the police but nothing ever came of it. They did try to cash a check using my identity. I was told that there had been several reports of this type of activity and they suspected a gang of some sort.

Fast forward to this week. I was thinking they were going to tell me they caught the perp. (That’s how they talk.  I know…I watch Law & Order.) I was thinking they were going to ask me to testify. I had it all planned. I would bring down the house with a “You can’t handle the truth” speech that I would deliver with emotion and tears that did not smear my make-up.

I called and was ready to do whatever was asked of me. Go undercover, wear a wire, get my cousin Vinny to…wait, I think I’m getting confused. Anyway, I was psyched.

“Hi!  This is Sabine Brown. You were trying to get a hold of me in regards to my purse that was stolen 2 years ago?”
“Yeah, do you remember where you filed that police report?”
I told him.  I waited for the ask that would require great bravery but be necessary for the good of mankind.
“Well…that was all I really needed…thanks.”

No witness protection or nothin’. Well that was anti-climactic. I guess I’ll save my Jack Nicholson moment for when they finally catch up to me for that illegal copy of Batteries Not Included.