Do you know where…

The other night at work a woman approached me.  She asked, “Do you know wur the dushes?” Bear in mind, this was the customer who earlier this summer came in, swatted a fly with a bag of potato chips and demanded her daughter get a new bag because those were all crushed.

     I was puzzled. I asked her to repeat herself again.  She again said, “Do you kno wur the dushes?”  With a befuddled look on my face I quickly escorted her to the aisle where we might have dishes.  Making a huge gesture with both hands, I said, “If it is going to be anywhere, it will be right here.” She made a “tsk” sound and said, it wasn’t what she was looking for.

     She then tried to educate me some more on what she was talking about.  “You know, it’s a thing you can fill with water and vinegar and you can squeeze it?” Again, I looked at her trying to figure out what she was talking about.  She acted disappointed in me that I couldn’t figure it out.       

     Then I lead her down another aisle.  We walked down the dish soap aisle where I again made a huge gesture with both hands and said, “If we are going to have it, it will be right here.”  I thought she was talking about those dish scrubbers you can fill with various liquids like vinegar and water and squeeze to clean stuff with a scouring pad at one end.  
     

     Exasperated, she just says, “Well, I guess you don’t have dushes.” Suddenly it hit me. 

     “Are you talking about, like, lady stuff?” I said waving my hands back and forth in front of my pelvis.

     “YEAH! DUSHES!”

     “Okay, follow me.”

     We finally head down the aisle where the “douche” is and she smiles.  She looked at me and gently nudged me with her elbow, “You don’t know what dush is…” She chuckled.


     “I don’t know, maybe I’m lazy.”

Have you ever had a hard time understanding a customer?  What did you think they were trying to say to you?

Obligatory Selfie

Since starting my second job back in July I’ve witnessed some pretty odd behaviors. Most of them stemming from other things the person has been partaking in. However, for the most part, whether the person has been engaging in extra curricular activity or not, their behavior boils down to wanting attention.

       Usually I work on the weekends which is prime time to get some hours in and do some people watching at the sametime. Within one weekend I observed two of the strangest behaviors I’ve seen which didn’t involve other substances.     

A young girl was walking down the aisle from where our pharmacy is. She was walking nonchalantly and pushing buttons on her phone. Suddenly she raises her medicine bag up and smiles at her phone, continues walking while her face goes back to “resting mean face”.

     This was foreign to me.  

     Usually I don’t take selfies, if I do it’s rare and it’s because I’m standing next to a Beatle, Mickey Dolenz or Agent Carter. (Which still has yet to happen.)

  
     Anyway after observing this young woman, the thought occured that maybe selfies have become obligatory. Now that the selfie is officially part of the lexicon of most of the world it has also been added to the dictionary. Does this mean that we should be taking them for every little thing as if it has become normal?

  
     What did this young lady have to announce by taking a self portrait with her bag of medicine? Here are some of the things that ran through my head that she captioned the picture with:

1. This is the only thing that has made me smile in 25 years!

2. Guess what’s in here…it ain’t a cat!

3. Party for one at my apartment!

4. I went to the store and all I got was this prescription…it IS possible to not buy anything else here!
     I’m sure there is a myriad of other ones more profane than the ones which were suggested here, but you see my point. I’m sure her selfie looked great with the framing she chose to go along with the filter and caption. However the process made her look strange to those of us on the outside of her social media circle. 

 
     The other strange behavior I observed was yet, ANOTHER young woman taking multiple selfies. Her behavior was more weird than the one aforementioned. She went out of her way to hide behind a stack of DVD’s because her selfie required her to stick her tongue out, and turn her head multiple directions while wiggling said tongue. Meanwhile her phone was making all sorts of noises like, “AH! AH! AH!” , like Stephen Hawking was frightened trying to roll away from her. (I’m not going to lie, I was tempted to step in and photo bomb her tongue waggling selfie.)  

  
     The first woman was unaware of her silly behavior. The second one was cognizant and actually went out of her way to poorly hide her behavior.  

     I just think it’s interesting how some of us have quit examining ourselves and our behaviors because it has become the norm, and how some of us despite the norm feel the need to hide from it.  

     What are your opinions on it? I’m curious to hear from you dear readers. Do you feel selfies are obligatory? Do you feel we should hide certain behaviors because we are ashamed of how silly we look?

Tumbling Tumbleweeds

Every once in a while life hands you what seems like an eerily calm moment. When the life you know has been in a constant state of change for the last 16 years, you don’t know how to handle or deal with slow moments. You are just sitting there like a tumbleweed without wind. Instead of rolling into the plains you are in silence surrounded by other tumbleweeds. You are praying for a cloud burst, a whirlwind, a tornado, anything. Sometimes, if you are lucky, a few tumbleweeds will come rolling your way and bump into you, with a gentle nudge in the right direction.

 

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I am in the plains again, thanks to fellow tumbleweeds.

Last week was my last at my job. I worked in a fun, noisy kitchen with many lovely people. Some rolled out as quick as they came and then there were a few who stuck around eventually guiding me on this journey.

There were subtle hints along the way. Some would say, “What happened to your blog? You should write more” while they gently sliced vegetables for a soup. Through the gentle nudge the writing started to flow. The stories started coming into the folds of my brain like a welcomed downpour of rain seeps into the cracks of a dried up creek. When the writing happened, something magical took place. It was as if I could see from a new perspective and laugh again at the idiosyncrasies of life and appreciate it at the same time.

The tumbleweeds jumped and hopped, speaking in unison, reading my writings and encouraging me to do more.

I questioned whether or not to go to school with other aimless tumbleweeds. Again encouragement came in unison from the work tumbleweeds. Everyone scheduled time around me to continue to work with them while pursuing a dream. Their kindness was insurmountable. I went to school with the other tumbleweeds and discovered other ways of writing, other ways of being.

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This is how I roll…at school.

I came back to the work tumbleweeds in the midst of a rush with ideas flowing through my mind showing them what their encouragement has done. They in turn shared with me their passions, their dreams, allowing me to have a taste.

Other tumbleweeds started rolling into the kitchen. They too were encouraging and inspiring. Before I could even begin to repay or thank my work tumbleweeds for everything they have done by gently nudging me as they rolled in, a wind came through. We all started bustling and swirling around in the kitchen and suddenly I was plucked from the workplace by a cyclone.

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As I looked to the ground as I was whirling up toward the sky, all I could do was wave and say goodbye. In those brief moments I thought about everything they had said and done for me. How they had guided me to this place, kept me safe and helped me to be the best I could be in any situation.

Soon I was at the top of the cyclone, being tossed around like popcorn in a kettle. I panicked. My tumbleweed friends shouted up saying, “Everything is going to be alright. You will do well!” A calmness came over me and just like that, I was spit out through the anvil of the cloud, hurling back to earth landing in a soft bed of grass. I looked back at my friends, they were still together, waving, shouting encouragement as I continued to roll.

I shouted back words of love, gratitude and thanks as I continued to roll through the pasture.

One day we will meet again, thanks to the wind.

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Thank you to all of my co-workers for everything you have done. Thank you for your efforts in re-arranging your lives and schedules around me, and encouraging me to follow my passion and share it with the world. You all have a special place in my heart, and know if there is anything I can do for you I will. One day a wind will pick me up, and gently deposit me on a seat in front of our old cafe, this time as a customer and friend.

What  job have you had a bittersweet parting with?  Do you still keep in touch with friends and co-workers from your old job?

Writer’s constipation becomes artistic diarrhea

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Writer’s block is crippling. It’s one of those things that strikes when you least expect it. Part of the reason why I might be inflicted with this issue is due to the fact life has been happening at such a fast rate, I’m for once managing to not only keep up with it but enjoy it at the same time. However, that doesn’t help for managing to find time to sit and write when you’re busy making life happen.

I’m also going to blame my writers block on my Jungian personality type that can switch and swing one of two ways, ENFJ and ENTJ. Lately I’ve been working on a rotating art project in which you exchange your piece every week with someone and add to what they’ve made. Needless to say, my brain is in visual or “feeling” mode rather than “thinking” mode which might explain the difficulty in verbally expressing or writing my stories here of late on this blog. We are only a week in with this project but still I can’t switch my brain off from thinking of interesting or funny visuals to draw and paint. When this happens, my brain switches over from having verbal abilities and can’t seem to spit anything out; unfortunately for my art partners the only thing my brain spits out is artistic diarrhea.

Because of the recent brain switch over, I’ve been mulling over visual ideas with my coworkers who are doing this project and I’m fairly certain they are getting tired of my strange excitement over being able to flex the muscles on the other side of my brain for once.

Just to give you an example of what has been going through my mind for ideas, I will in my best way verbally describe to you the images I envisioned.

The first idea I had was to have someone eating a plate of spaghetti with the spaghetti being formed into words saying, “You are what you eat.”

I know what you’re thinking; this idea isn’t so bad. No, this idea wasn’t, it was the idea that came after it.

The second idea I had was to have a pirate with an apple on his hook saying, “You ARRR what you eat!” At this point for those of you out there who are still with me and reading this, you might say, ” This isn’t the worst of ideas and I can see how this idea stemmed from the first one.” I would agree with you whole heartedly. It’s the third idea I came up with that would cause you to question the health of my mental state altogether.

You see this project we are working on has to be about food. All of us working on this rotating art project work in an all natural grocery store. Once our team has worked on all four paintings, then we are going to auction them off to raise money for a family in need at Christmas time. So to represent us, and what we promote in our everyday lives, we have to make the subject matter in some form about food.

The third and worst idea came to me while I was working in the frozen section near the dried fruit. It was the idea of where raisins actually come from. Suddenly I remembered when I was a kid going to visit my aunt and my cousin and remembered this was one of the first instances I helped my aunt change my newborn cousin’s diaper. Bear in mind I didn’t have any brothers or sisters despite the fact I begged my parents for one; so I was kind of clueless about babies in general. When I went to help change the diaper and saw my cousin’s belly I couldn’t help but gasp; there was a raisin where her belly button should be. At the time I was highly puzzled by this and my aunt giggled jokingly calling this shriveled dark spot my cousin’s raisin. Then it was explained to me later on this is just the part of the umbilical cord that hasn’t naturally fallen off yet.

When I remembered this story, it made me laugh, and suddenly I had a funny image of drawing cartoon babies lined up in a nursery, with each one having a real raisin glued to the canvas where their belly button should be. I was thinking of giving them a nursery sign labeled, “Raisin Farm” but then I realized people wouldn’t know the back story. Then the fleeting image passed through my mind of my coworkers questioning my mental sanity and placing a phone call to men holding white jackets with buckles on them, convincing me what they were holding was the latest thing in fashion and ushering me into a professionally driven vehicle with no windows in it to the nearest facility for evaluation.

In the end I wound up settling on the idea of “Mac & Cheese” two best friends in a cartoon polaroid taken on a road trip through Missouri. It wasn’t the best idea, but at least it wouldn’t be an idea that would land me in an asylum with missed days of work and would spare me the scared looks on my coworkers’ faces.

What crazy ideas have you had for a project that you’ve censored yourself on? Did you censor yourself because you were afraid of what people might think or because you knew it wouldn’t make sense to anyone else?

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