MY V.I.P. FILE

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Sunday, August 29, 2010

#22 THINGS I HAVE LEARNED (THE HARD WAY )

Originally I started out hoping I could of think of ten STUPID things I have done during my lifetime.  Unfortunately, these twenty are just the tip of the iceberg!

  1.   Don’t step up on a tall step when you have to pee. 
  2.   Check out which way the staples come out of a staple gun before
        you use it (or you can staple your work glove to your palm = 
        future blog).
  3.   Don’t carry a ladder through a room with a ceiling fan (at least not upright).
  4.   Don’t try to fry eggs on your glass stove top.
  5.   Speaking of eggs.  Don’t boil eggs in the microwave, either.
  6.   Don’t touch the drill bit right after you use it (unless you like pain).
  7.   Circular saws can cut through sawhorses (and lots of other GOOD stuff). 
  8.   Lawnmowers can throw a rock against a tree so hard that the rock can ricochet off
        (and hit you in the head). 
  9.   But, even more important, lawnmower blades can chop up grass shears 
        (and shoot them out the side as lethal projectiles - just ask my cat).
10.  A tarantula bite feels like a bee sting (and visa versa).
11.  Metal canoes can be bent in half (try not to be in them when they do).
12.  Don’t make a swimsuit out of terry cloth (think about it).
13.  Gasoline vapor ignites, (in a big flash) not the liquid gas.
14.  Eyebrows can be burned off by ignited gasoline vapor.
15.  You can’t paper train a male dog, (unless you, also, hang a paper on the wall).
16.  And while I am on the subject of pets, no matter how hard you try you can't get a cat to
       blow its nose.
17.  Copper bottom pans can melt off onto the burner (if you get them hot enough).
18.  Also, skillets are no good after they catch on fire (at least they stick like crazy).
19.  Paper plates don’t fare well in the dishwasher (they kind of clog up the works).

20.  Don’t stand on the front porch and watch electricity, from lightening, travel up 
        the wet sidewalk toward you (unless you want an electrifying experience).

Yes!  I have first hand experience with EVERY one.

kt 2010




Sunday, August 22, 2010

#21-CUTE KID'S PROUD MOMENT (repost)

My son, Gene, was a cute little kid that shared EVERYTHING.  He is in his 40’s now, but when he was in his 2s he had to have major surgery (because of a inguinal hernia).  As you would expect this was a HUGH deal to him as it was to all of us.  The operation went fine and Gene recovered nicely.  However, it did direct his attention to the incision area between his legs. 

One day we were in the local department store in downtown Indio, California.  His incision was completely healed but his interest wasn’t.

An older lady approached us down the main isle.  She saw my son (who seemed to always draw the attention of older women).  She immediately smiled at him.  She bent down to his level and started talking to him. 

My, son, a very friendly open and sunny kid, smiled back at the lady and said, “Ewe wan-a see my op-ra-tion?”

Before I could react, the older lady said, “Yes.”  Then my son immediately yanked his pants to the floor and proudly thrust his pelvis forward. He, also, had the presence of mind to adjust his small package to the side so the lady could have a clear view.

The poor woman instantly turned scarlet, her hand flew to her chest, and she got up so fast that I thought she would feint.  She quickly bustled away (never looking back once).

My unfazed son pulled up his pants and we went on our way.  I may be warped but I got the giggles, which shortly thereafter, broke out in unrestrained laughter (particularly when I remembered the look of pride on his face as he shared his op-ra-tion).

kt 2010

#21 CUTE KID'S PROUD MOMENT

Cute Kid
My son, Gene, was a cute little kid that shared EVERYTHING.  He is in his 40’s now, but when he was in his 2s he had to have major surgery (because of a inguinal hernia).  As you would expect this was a HUGH deal to him as it was to all of us.  The operation went fine and Gene recovered nicely.  However, it did direct his attention to the incision area between his legs. 

One day we were in the local department store in downtown Indio, California.  His incision was completely healed but his interest wasn’t.

An older lady approached us down the main isle.  She saw my son (who seemed to always draw the attention of older women).  She immediately smiled at him.  She bent down to his level and started
talking to him. 

My, son, a very friendly open and sunny kid, smiled back at the lady and said, “Ewe wan-a see my op-ra-tion?”

Before I could react, the older lady said, “Yes.”  Then my son immediately yanked his pants to the floor and proudly thrust his pelvis forward. He, also, had the presence of mind to adjust his small package to the side so the lady could have a clear view.

The poor woman instantly turned scarlet, her hand flew to her chest, and she got up so fast that I thought she would feint.  She quickly bustled away (never looking back once).

My unfazed son pulled up his pants and we went on our way.  I may be warped but I got the giggles, which shortly thereafter, broke out in unrestrained laughter (particularly when I rememberd the look of pride on his face as he shared his op-ra-tion).

kt 2010

Sunday, August 15, 2010

#20 "RECIPE FOR DISASTER"

Mannnn, what a TWIT!




INGREDIENTS:
1 accident-prone disaster designer
1 nightgown on disaster designer
1 - 3 matches
1 small (tattered) American Flag in need of disposal




TIME:  approximately 60 seconds





PROCEDURE:
1.  Take all ingredients out the back door because it is early and you are still in your nightgown.
2.  Strike the match, let wind blow it out.  Strike another 2 matches at the same time.
3.  Hold the matches to lowest corner of the flag (that is dangling from your fingertips).
4.  Hold the burning flag out in front of you.
5.  Realize that eventually the fire will burn your hand.
6.  Look around for options (as to where you can lay the flag).
7.  Drop your right arm (the one extending the burning flag) a little bit as you look around.
8.  Feel heat on your leg.
9.  Look down to see your nightgown on fire (just below the knee).
10.  Drop the burning flag.
11.  Brush the flames (on the gown) out with your hand.
12.  Discover the burned flag remnants are made of something that sticks to your fingers (and leg).
13.  Scrape the goop off your burning fingers with a fingernail on your left hand.
14.  Transfer molten flag remnant to fingernail of left hand.
15.  Watch fingernail melt as goop cools.
16.  Shake you head at your stupidity as you enter the house.
17.  Put burn salve on the small round burn in your leg and on two burned fingers of your right hand.
19.  Watch the white blister forming on the end of your ring finger.
20.  Cut the end of the melted fingernail on your left hand.
21.  Sit down in your recliner and ponder the burned hole in your favorite nightgown.
22.  Give thanks to God that your nightgown was flame RESISTANT.
23.  Smile to yourself as you realize that this fiasco is perfect fodder for your next blog.


(100% TRUE)


kt 2010 (shortly after the 4th of July)

#20-FRIDAY FLASH BACKS (Recipe for Disaster)



                                                              INGREDIENTS
                                           1 accident-prone Master Disaster Designer
                                               1 nightgown on disaster designer
                                               1 - 3 matches
                                               1 small (tattered) American Flag in need of disposal

 TIME  
                                                              approximately 60 seconds



 PROCEDURE
1.  Take all ingredients out the back door (because it is early and you are still in your nightgown).
2.  Strike the match, let wind blow it out.  Strike another 2 matches at the same time.
3.  Hold the matches to lowest corner of the flag (that is dangling from your fingertips).
4.  Hold the burning flag out in front of you.
5.  Realize that eventually the flames will burn your hand.
6.  Quickly look around for options (as to where you can lay the flag).
7.  Drop your right arm (the one extending the burning flag) a little bit as you look around.
8.  Feel heat on your leg.
9.  Look down to see your nightgown on fire (just below the knee).
10.  Drop the burning flag.
11.  Brush the flames (on the gown) out with your hand.
12.  Discover the burned flag remnants are made of something that sticks to your fingers (and leg).
13.  Scrape the goop off your burning fingers with a fingernail on your left hand.
14.  Transfer molten flag remnant to fingernail of left hand.
15.  Watch fingernail melt as goop cools.
16.  Shake you head at your stupidity as you enter the house.
17.  Put burn salve on the small round burn in your leg and on two burned fingers of your right hand.
19.  Watch the white blister forming on the end of your ring finger.
20.  Cut the end of the melted fingernail on your left hand.
21.  Sit down in your recliner and ponder the burned hole in your favorite nightgown.
22.  Give thanks to God that your nightgown was flame RESISTANT.
23.  Smile to yourself as you realize that this fiasco is perfect fodder for your next blog.

kt 2010 

Monday, August 9, 2010

#19 FOR ONCE, I HAD A COMEBACK

   
I was before HER!
On August 4th I was returning from a visit to see my daughter in Connecticut.  It so happens that there were several storms
in the Midwest and flights were being delayed all over the place.  The Plane I was on left one hour late.

I arrived in Chicago, (my first stop) to change planes.  However, after a mad dash to the end of a different concourse I find that the plane I was supposed to catch had just pushed off.

The ticket agent informed that there was another plane going to Kansas City TWO concourses over, and, I had to hurry.   
So, I raced back past the concourse where I disembarked and headed for the next one.  Of course each gate was 
                                                       located at the end of each of these concourses.

Winded, and already suffering from shin splints, I limped up to the counter.  The agent finished with the person he was helping and asked me if I needed to be ticked for this plane (which was already boarding). 

I plopped my old ticket down and struggled to utter, "Uh Huh."  Suddenly, the lady standing a couple of feet to my left  exploded and went into a loud verbal assault that got the attention of everyone within 100 yards.

“I was before HER!” she screamed, and pushed in beside me.   She railed on (and on) about how she had been waiting for FOUR HOURS for her flight., was going to report him, etc. 

I asked her to calm down (and made a few outer mild comments aimed at disarming her) and she directed her ire at me.  You see SHE was from the “STATE DEPARTMENT” and required immediate attention (which ended up being an inane question).

I stepped back, gestured toward the counter and said, “Please, go ahead.  I am a Lieutenant on the Kansas City Police Department and I can use the time to contact my watch commander to inform him that YOU are on the way to our FAIR city.”

She froze there for a minute.  

The agent kept his head down but I could see there was a slight up turn at the corners of his mouth.   After she left he looked up at me and asked, “Are you really a police officer?”

I answered, “Not even close.  But, wasn’t that fun!”  He laughed and finished my ticket.


Come back next week for "RECIPE FOR DISASTER!"

kt 8/4/2010















Thursday, August 5, 2010

#18 Poor Kid Wasn’t Even A Little Bit Country (part 3 of 3)

                                                                        
(This is the last in a series of 3 about my daughter adjusting to life in a small rural town)


Our first Easter in Lamar, I bought 6 bantam chickens for Patty and her brother.  There were four females and two roosters.  Both kids delighted with the chicks and helped raise them.  That first winter was a cold one and we did not have a heater in the chicken pen so we moved them into the kitchen.  I found a large box at the furniture store and set up a home 
                                                      away from home for our charges. 

The young chickens had all the comforts of home.  We stuck rods through the cardboard sides for them to roost upon.  Water and plenty of food was deposited in jar lids.  We even cut out little doors so we could peek in on them.                       

One day I heard a big ruckus coming from the box.  I peeked in to see what they were all frazzled about.  They seemed to be attending to one particular chick, named Henrietta.  I watched intently as she finally deposited one tiny egg in the straw.  When I called Patty and showed her the egg she was enthralled.

The next afternoon they started up another hullabaloo so I ran and got Patty so she could watch.  This time it was Peepers, Patty’s favorite, which was doing her dance.  We watched and then there it was lying in the straw.
Patty, gasped, stomped out of the kitchen and slammed the door to her room.

I knocked on her door, went into her room, and asked her what was wrong.

Patty, replied in a disgusted voice, “Did you see where that egg came from?  I’m NEVER eating eggs again!”  To myself I thought, “Wonder what she will refuse to eat when I let the eggs hatch?”

I also wondered how long it would take a 10 year old child to starve to death?

kt 2010


           

Sunday, August 1, 2010

#17 Poor Kid Wasn't Even a Little Bit Country (part 2 of 3)

                                                  


(this is a series of 3....scroll down and start with #1)

One afternoon, my daughter, Patty, came racing into the kitchen and exclaimed, “Someone is throwing things at me!”

Of course I was skeptical, but my daughter seemed to be very sure so I followed her into the yard.

She showed me where she was standing when an object had struck her on the back.  We walked around the yard and surrounding area.  Not even one hidden prankster could be found.  Satisfied, I went back into the house.

Minutes later she came flying back into the house.    

She was REALLY angry this time.  Patty was sputtering, pointing toward the back yard, and stomping her feet shouting,  “Someone IS out there!”.

So, we took off again for the back yard (which was about 3 acres of bushes, oak trees and brush).  Another complete search revealed no lurking ambushers.  As we were heading back to the house I heard a whizzing sound; like something flying through the air.  Then I heard an object hit the side of the garage.

Patty, (with hands on hips) glared at me and growled, “SEE!”

Then another object hit me on the head.  That was when I realized that the flying objects were acorns from this GIANT, 200 year old, oak tree which stood in the middle of our back yard.  Acorns would drop from a great height, careen off a branch and take off like a missile.

When the culprit was revealed, I laughed.  Patty just stomped into the house muttering something like, “I really hate it here!”



kt 2010

                

#16 Poor Kid Wasn’t Even A Little Bit Country (part 1 of 3)

                               
Patty          
The next 3 stores are TRUE stories about my 10-year-old daughter, Patty, and her problems adjusting from life in Los Angeles to living in the small rural town of Lamar, MO.

It was 1976 and Patty was invited to spend the night with a new friend.  Now, Patty had been over to this girl’s house numerous times.  One of their favorite things to do, while there,  was to play with a calf the family kept in the side yard.  His name was  (key word) Billy.

Somewhere around 6:30 PM I got a frantic call from my daughter.            


She was sobbing hysterically and begging me to come and get her.  I was alarmed by her plaintiff cries and tried to get her to tell me the problem.  She finally blurted out, “Mom, please come and get me.  NOW!  These people EAT THEIR PETS!”

I later found out that as she was forking a piece of beef into her mouth someone said, “Isn’t BILLY good!  I guess the realization hit her the moment she started to chew.  I’ll bet you can guess what happened next!


kt 2010

#15 AS A RESULT OF DAD'S BATHTUB ADVENTURE

(Don't start here.  Scroll down to the beginning for parts 1, 2,  3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)     Trust me it will be worth it.




BLOW-BY-BLOW part 10 (the finale):  Once again an old adage bears true.  "Necessity is the mother of invention. " We now have a sturdy, fully functioning (removable) handrail across the tub opening.  Am I great or what!  Of course, the fact that it doesn't look like a professioal job does not spoil the victory!!!!!



FINALLY FINISHED!


                                       kt   July 7, 2010  

#14 AS A RESULT OF DAD'S BATHTUB ADVENTURE

(Don't start here.  It will make more sense if you scroll down to the beginning for parts 1, 2,  3, 4, 5, 6)

BLOW-BY-BLOW part 7: Ok, I redesigned the rail brackets. This required using the circular saw and jigsaw again (which, with me, is an accident waiting to happen). However, both cuts went off without a hitch. It was when I had to use the sander that things got interesting. Apparently, I had left the sander on the last time I used it and just flipped the switch to the plug. So when I plugged it into a different outlet it jumped off the sawhorse shelf and raced across the garage floor…..toward the cat (who was lounging on the cement floor watching the Karen show)! I don’t know how she did it, but somehow she sprung off the floor, spun around in mid air and almost left skid marks leaving the area. I stood there watching the CATastrophe unfold. I had started to laugh when the sander came to the end of its tether, jerked and started back in my direction. Oh, _______! After coaxing my eyebrows down off the ceiling I managed to pull the plug on the errant sander. The cat is nowhere to be found.

BLOW-BY-BLOW part 8:  Woopie!  I found the studs, drilled holes in the NEW boards (and the saw horses holding them.  By the way, did you know that if you put a board on a cement floor to drill it and, WELL....... accidentally drill through the board to the cement and, WELL...... the drill bit gets so hot it melts?  Just thought I'd mention this just in case someone (not me) might do that.

BLOW-BY-BLOW part 9 : I drilled holes (and only 3 too many) in the walls at each end of the tub where the studs are, I love that word and screwed the boards to the walls (only loosing 1 screw down the drain.  Now, to test my invention I only have to slip the rail into the U slots.  Tell you next tie because this is the cliff hanger ending for this episode.

(10 is next)

#13 AS A RESULT OF DAD'S BATHTUB ADVENTURE

(Don't start here.  Scroll down to the beginning for parts 1, 2, 3)


BLOW-BY-BLOW part 4:   Ran into a snag today…My stud finder isn’t working…no surprise to me….mine hasn’t been working for years!

BLOW-BY-BLOW part 5:  I finally put the final coat of spray paint on the boards and rail
(only spraying the cat, slightly). And I’ll be right back right after an announcement from our sponsors……CpC (cats protecting cats) Buy this special outfit to protect your cat from
unnecessary spray painting accidents….$40.00 all profits go to the cats in west Africa.

BLOW-BY-BLOW part 6:   I would start off with CUSS words but I don’t want to offend anyone (so I am saying them out loud as I type). I finally got the stud finder to work (need new batteries – don’t we all). I searched for 20 minutes only to find that nearby studs were 6 inches away from where I needed to anchor the boards. BACK TO THE (MacGyver) DRAWING BOARD!

Parts 7, 8, 9 next.

#12 AS A RESULT OF DAD'S BATHTUB ADVENTURE

This is another one I will have to do in parts because it is soooooo long.

My father is 99 and he had an accident last week. It seems that he fell butt first into the tub while trying to pull his pants up. He wasn’t hurt, but I had to call 911 for help getting him out of the bathtub. So, I have been trying to design a way to put a removable handrail across the opening to the tub. I put these daily comments on facebook (one at a time):


BLOW-BY-BLOW part 1: The first problem I encountered was, "How am I going to fasten the end of the pole to the walls? "The guy at the lumber yard sold me 2 wide L brackets. Didn't take this lady long to realize that If I screwed the brackets to the wall and the pole to the brackets; then I would have to crawl
                                      over or under to take a bath. NOPE that is a deal breaker.

BLOW-BY-BLOW part 2: Well, I cut the wood pieces yesterday and only dropped the circular saw once (a personal best for me), Then I jigged U slots in the top of each board. Is till have all my fingers so will consider it a success. Next I painted on side of each board and the railing. By this time it was afternoon and sweat was dripping off my nose onto the boards. Time to quit!

BLOW-BY-BLOW part 3: Ok, I now have both sides of the boards and the bottom of the railing painted. Only knocked over the paint can once and dropped the paint brush twice. In typical Karen style it would be easier to describe where I didn’t get paint on myself; lets just say I now have a basecoat most everywhere! Once I sand the ants off tomorrow, I should be able to put the finish coat on.

See part 3, 4, 5 next.

#11 CRAZY, BUT TRUE

I recently opened my kitchen cupboard and found something, well, how can I put it?  I found out something disturbing about myself.

OMG, I AM COLLECTING McDONALD COFFEE CUPS! You know the paper/Styrofoam, orange/brown ones with a white McCafe scribbled on a field of brown. The one that has the disclaimer, “CAUTION handle with care I’M HOT,” in two languages (and we all remember that fiasco don’t we?).

Well, I have 20 of them lined up in the dish cupboard; four sets; five to a set. Have I gone completely nuts? I turned around after realizing what I was doing and spied 10 more (yes, you read right, arranged in two sets of five) sitting on the counter next to my range.   I have completely gone around the bend. A quick look around netted 6 more in the dish drainer. OMG, I’M COLLECTING McDONALD COFFEE CUPS!

Wait a minute, wait a minute, no, I’m not senile, over the hill, demented or anything like that. Yes, I’m a little eccentric (ok, a lot), but I must have a reason (and hopefully I can come up with several plausible reasons) for such bizarre behavior.

So, I began to ponder (oh, no here I go again) why on earth am I amassing a flotilla of McDonald coffee cups ? Incidentally I have numerous lids too. Therefore, over the next few days I monitored my collecting and use of said cups; this is what I found:

Every day my Dad brings home a coffee cup from his lunch at McDonalds.  Instead of getting a refill on his coffee he has me fill the empty cup with diet Coke before we leave. This comes home with him for his afternoon refreshment. The cup eventually ends up on the kitchen counter. I usually rinse the cup out so a not to attract ants.  But, here is where it all goes wrong … … I begin to think of uses for this empty cup. To use as a pet food scoop, a disposable drinking cup, a plant starter, bacon grease container, scrap food receptacle, a poop scoop, ... and on ...and on ...and on. That is why the cup goes into the dish drainer and eventually into the cupboard.

The next shock occurs when I go to the cupboard for a glass. I see the McDonald cups, but do not take one. Why, you ask? Well, I might need one for something else later (see why I am alarmed!).

I found uses for the lids, too. I heat Dad’s vegetables in the microwave. I discovered that large ceramic coffee cups do the trick (since the alarming news about the danger of heating stuff in plastic containers). But, without a lid the stuff can splatter. Like a lightening bolt it hit me, place an inverted coffee cup lid on top. It worked. Not only that the leftover vegies. can be left in the cup, covered by the lid and placed in the frig. NEAT! So, now there are even lids by my cups in the cupboard, and lids by my microwave.

At this point my mind is actually pondering saving a matching set of covered dishes. I mean, those Styrofoam breakfast plates are great for keeping things warm. Hummmmm… … …

PLEASE stop me now, I am actually considering it!

kt 2010

#11-FRIDAY'S FLASHBACK (Crazy, But True)

FRIDAY FLASHBACKS are earlier posts I have decided to republish.  


The summer of 09 I opened my kitchen cupboard and found something, well, how can I put it?  I found out something disturbing about myself.

OMG, I AM COLLECTING McDONALD COFFEE CUPS! You know the paper/Styrofoam, orange/brown ones with a white McCafe scribbled on a field of brown. The one that has the disclaimer, “CAUTION handle with care I’M HOT,” in two languages (and we all remember that fiasco don’t we?).

Well, I have 20 of them lined up in the dish cupboard; four sets; five to a set. Have I gone completely nuts? I turned around after realizing what I was doing and spied 10 more (yes, you read right, arranged in two sets of five) sitting on the counter next to my range.   I have completely gone around the bend. A quick look around netted 6 more in the dish drainer. OMG, I’M COLLECTING McDONALD COFFEE CUPS and I'm washing them!

Wait a minute, wait a minute, no, I’m not senile, over the hill, demented or anything like that.  Yes, I’m a little eccentric (ok, a lot), but I must have a reason (and hopefully I can come up with several plausible reasons) for such bizarre behavior.

So, I began to ponder (oh, no here I go again pondering can be a dangerous thing for me to do).  Why on earth am I amassing a flotilla of McDonald coffee cups ? Incidentally I have numerous lids too. Therefore, over the next few days I monitored my collecting and use of said cups; this is what I found:

Every day my Dad brings home a coffee cup from his lunch at McDonalds.  Instead of getting a refill on his coffee he has me fill the empty cup with diet Coke before we leave. This comes home with him for his afternoon refreshment. The cup eventually ends up on the kitchen counter. I usually rinse the cup out so a not to attract ants (see blog #92 on ants).  But, here is where it all goes wrong … … I begin to think of uses for this empty cup. To use as a pet food scoop, a disposable drinking cup, a plant starter, bacon grease container, scrap food receptacle, a poop scoop, ... and on ...and on ...and on. That is why the cup goes into the dish drainer and eventually into the cupboard.

The next shock occurs when I go to the cupboard for a glass. I see the McDonald cups, but do not take one. Why, you ask? Well, I might need one for something else later (see why I am alarmed!).

Uses for the lids were found, too. I heat Dad’s vegetables in the microwave. I discovered that large ceramic coffee cups do the trick (since the alarming news about the danger of heating stuff in plastic containers). But, without a lid the stuff can splatter. Like a lightening bolt it hit me, place an inverted coffee cup lid on top. It was a perfect fit. Not only that the leftover veggies can be left in the cup, covered by the lid and placed in the frig. NEAT! So, now there are even lids by my cups in the cupboard, and lids by my microwave.

At this point my mind is actually mulling over saving a matching set of covered dishes. I mean, those Styrofoam breakfast plates are great for keeping things warm. Hummmmm… … …

PLEASE stop me now, I am actually considering it!

1/27/11  (Still save them, but the good news is I don't have a collection of the covered dishes!  Well, truth be known I do have 3.)
kt2011