Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The Relationship Specialist

I am so good at forgetting the nonsensical passwords that I create to safeguard my online accounts that I often feel like a teenager who got home after curfew.  Locked out again!

Today a screen came up asking me for my social security number, my card number, my card security number, my birth date and my mother's maiden name.  Pardon me, but isn't that the same information that all those phishers, hackers and other black-hat wearing baddies are looking for? How am I to know if this is a legitimate website or a fake one? 

I decided to call the number on the back of my card.  I kid you not, after the required 'if/then' triaging that we all despise, I was told by the mechanical voice to hold the line for a "relationship specialist."  

Jackpot!  If there's anything I could use, it's a relationship specialist! Isn't this an exciting idea?  To think that a credit card company would hire a customer service representative specializing in relationships.  Maybe they really do care about me!  I marvel at this. I'm getting more excited about this upcoming conversation by the second.  How in depth can we get in a quick phone call?  
Will there be a follow-up session?  I'm pretty sure even the most talented specialist won't be able to iron out all my issues in just one short call.

I started writing a list of topics to discuss and had barely scratched the surface when a sweet sounding Asian guy named Jeff arrived on the other end of the line.  

"I'm soooo excited, Jeff," I began.  "Little did I know when I dialed this 800 number with a credit card question that I would actually have the pleasure of talking to a relationship specialist.  I have so much to ask you!"

Jeff is laughing out loud and says, "I'm not much on relationships myself but I will try to help you."  

To get the credit card problem out of the way and free up time for the good stuff, I explain about being locked out of their website. I'm about to delve into other more delicate issues when Jeff, still laughing, says, "Stop right there.  I'm going to need to transfer you to my boss." 

"Is he a relationship specialist?" I ask.  

"No." He responds. "She's a relationship manager."

When it comes to matters of the heart, I think I'd rather talk to a specialist than a manager, but I decided to stay open minded.  Ms. Manager did efficiently solve my problem but she wasn't strong on bedside manner.  She never laughed once. I thought about hanging up and calling again, but decided to go grocery shopping instead.
As long as he has a forkin his hand,
 Jerry is all smiles.

Nothing improves my relationship with my husband more than supper on the table.  It's like the royal flush of our marriage.  It's such a departure from the norm that it always puts Jerry in a good mood.  It doesn't even matter what the meal is, it could be anything.  Just that it is, is enough. 

Hey, maybe there's a future for me as a relationship specialist!  I wonder how well they pay?

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Who knew?

After I vacuumed my living room carpet, I began cleaning the wood flooring around the edges of the room.  When I bent over to sweep under the sofa,  I found a green tomato hiding underneath it.  

Truth really is stranger than fiction, isn't it?

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Yoga Returns

It's been over a year now since Satan's Mistress, my yoga instructor Mary Ann, up and married and moved herself off to Birmingham, Alabama, thus ending my brief and colorful career as a perpetual yoga student.  For me, yoga turns out to be a lot like childbirth in that as time goes by, the memory of the pain fades.  This is how I rationalize my second foray into the twisted world of sun salutations and downward dogs.

It happened innocently enough.  I was cruising through a church rummage sale on Saturday when I spied and then bought a boxed set of VHS yoga tapes.  At the time it seemed like a  fabulous find -  two tapes for one dollar.  Sale items often cause a form of temporary amnesia in me and for a moment - just long enough to check out - I forgot how I feel about this particular form of exercise.
Instead,  I was swept up in the thrill of the trash-to-treasures moment, grateful that my VCR was still fully functioning.  (Otherwise what would I do if I ever wanted to watch all those Richard Simmons "Sweatin' to the Oldies" tapes?)

When the weekend was over and I was emotionally back on solid ground, I exercised the bad judgment of telling my walking partners about the tapes. Before I could squirm into a pair of leotards, I found myself in my basement with a friend, listening to all the warnings about visiting doctors before beginning new exercise programs.  Who are they trying to kid here?  If I did that, I'd need a standing appointment.

My new prince of evil is named Rodney and he has the finely chiseled muscles of a youth who spends way too much time lifting weights at the gym.  I'm not so sure I want to take exercise advice from someone who's that into himself.  

This tape was copyrighted in MCMXCVIII (don't ya just love Roman numerals?) No matter how much effort I put into fitness, I'm pretty sure that I'm never gonna look as good as I did in 1998.  I'm not gonna lie to you - that's just a bit irritating, especially when I consider that Rodney will remain forever young. No sagging glutes for him, no paunchy abs.  Not even a tinge of graying at the temples.  No, thirty-something Rodney will be my own Dorian Gray, watching me age while he, himself, serenely smiles.

There are several pluses to using this videotape program though.  Obviously if I'm in my basement, I won't be seen outside the house in my exercise outfit. That is a huge check mark on the positive side of the paper for both me and the community at large, trust me.  Also, if I look crazy attempting one pretzel pose or another, only one person will laugh out loud at me and I'm pretty sure that if I blow in her direction, I can make her fall over sideways.  The biggest benny by far though is that any time I want to - any time at all - I can turn off the television.

In an instant, Rodney will disappear and yoga class will be over.  Then there's always the potential that the tape will get eaten while it's rewinding…

I never thought I'd admit it but I miss you, Mary Ann Raughton Rickman.

My former yoga instructor is now a Roller Derby Queen!