Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Fort Smith - Bringing People Together Since 1982...

Last weekend my best friend of 29 years (we’re 28—THAT’S how long we’ve been friends) came to Dallas. Saturday was Julie’s birthday and the weekend trip was a gift from her sweet boyfriend, Mark.

We had such a wonderful time.

For the most part, Julie and I could not be more different, both inside and out. Growing up we occasionally dressed alike (thank you, 579) but that’s where the resemblance ended--we were never mistaken for sisters. Regardless, people always found it odd when one of us was without the other, hence the expression “Where’s Julie?” and “Where’s Meredith?” on our senior shirts. She was the lead in several high school musicals, I was president of our class. She’s 5’2 with gorgeous curly brown hair, I’m 5’7 with not-so-gorgeous straight blonde hair. She loved singing, I loved math. Shall I go on? I shan’t.

I’m so thankful that many years later we’re still great friends. When you meet at such a young age you don’t really choose your friends, you just become friends because that’s what kids do. You give her the “Be Fri” necklace and keep the “st ends” for yourself. You pierce your ears together. You have sleepovers. You bake heart-shaped cookies for your parents’ anniversary that end up looking like butts and tasting even worse. You sit next to each other in church and write, “I can’t wait till camp!” instead of listening to the sermon. While all are terrific, none require much depth and often the friendship dies for one reason or another. That never happened to us. We grew older and our opinions changed, but we stood by one another. We wore different clothes. We dated different types of guys. We disagreed. We went to different schools and lived in different cities. And our friendship grew.

Seeing Julie and Mark together last weekend will forever be one of my favorite Julie memories. When someone you love finds someone who loves them just as much (dare I say more?), it’s the greatest feeling. I want nothing but the very best for this wonderful friend of mine. And I think she found him.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

X-Ray Vision

While driving to work yesterday a radio show discussed the body scan machine at the airport. I never really thought about it before but gained a brand new perspective.

I don’t ever, ever want to have an airport body scan.

My fear of airport checkpoints is not a new one. Several years ago I was stopped by a very kind, elderly man. I’d set off the alarm and after walking through it several times he apologetically told me I’d need to step aside so they could perform a full body search. Almost immediately I was patted down by a complete stranger. Finding zero guns, knives, grenades, or ridiculously dangerous fingernail clippers, he pulled out the search wand and continued the search. It kept going off right around my butt. The kind man asked if I was wearing a belt and I said no. Change? No. Keys? No. He kept waving the wand around my butt (which was quite awkward) and then the color drained from my face. Just as he was about to lead me to another room (God knows what they were going to do to me there), I said in a voice barely above a whisper, “I think it’s my underwear.” The 90-year-old's face was priceless. He turned to his co-worker and said, “She’s free to go!” And that was that.

(Editor interjection: It was quite innocent underwear. I’d go into detail but I doubt you care and it’s none of your business anyway.)

To learn that a body scan image is basically a nude photo of you is disturbing. Apparently the original image looks like a negative, but if you reverse it you could be the next star in a nudey magazine. And while I’d like to think all airport workers are nice and honest, statistics tell me at least one of them has the morals of an alley cat.

Michael and I are flying to Florida sometime in the next three months (take that, thief reading my blog in hopes to rob our house) and if I’m directed to the body scan machine at either airport I will, I repeat, will throw up.

I am all for airport safety but this seems a bit excessive, don’t you think? The joke was to put a gun in your pants to keep the workers from seeing you naked. Starting to think it’s not a terrible idea…

Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Birthday Fiasco

Several months ago my mom asked what I’d like for my birthday. It took approximately 3 seconds to reply, “a massage!” I hadn’t had one in over a year and I knew things were about to get pretty chaotic. On May 12 a glorious gift arrived from the Fort—a check from my parents with "massage!" written in the memo line. I knew if I had one in May or June it’d be wasted since I’d be thinking of other things so I purposefully saved it for July 2—my day off.

I called last Monday and scheduled the massage for 1 pm on Friday. I made plans to meet up with some friends for lunch on Friday so I called the day before and moved my appointment to 1:30p. Friday came around and I was GIDDY with excitement.

You know where this is going, don’t you?

At 1:10 I received a call from the salon asking me where I was for my 1p appointment. I didn’t answer the phone but after I heard the message I drove even faster to the salon. I breezed in at 1:15 and pretended I hadn’t received the message. I smiled and said, “Hello, I’m here for my 1:30 appointment.” The lady gave me the most condescending smile and said, “No honey, your appointment was at 1p. You’re late.”

Skeeerreeeeet (record scratching).

I mimicked her smile and nicely told her I’d called the day before to change my appointment. She blinked twice and went to the back room. Another lady came up and told me my appointment was at 1p so I gave her the same schpeel. They both tilted their heads and looked right at me, smiles never leaving their faces. It was then I realized, “Holy cow, they don’t believe me!” The first lady sighed and said, “I’m sorry, but we have a 2:00 appointment that can’t be moved. Perhaps you could come back at 4?” By this point sirens were blaring in my head so I only heard, “Blah blah blah, no massage for you.” I took a deep breath and said, “I’ll just go somewhere else.”

Perhaps I’m being a little overdramatic but I now know how Vivienne felt in Pretty Woman. Minus the whole prostitute part.

I grabbed my bag, walked to my car in the rain (of course), and called another salon in Coppell. Booked. And then I shook my fist and yelled to the thunder clouds, “I just want a massage, damnit!” They answered by literally raining on my parade.

After I got home I received a message from the owner who apologized profusely (I guess SHE was the one I spoke to the day before) and offered an hour massage for half price. My cheap side perked up, but my grudge-holding side (yikes, I have two sides and both are equally terrible) realized they’d still be getting money from me. No way was that going to happen. I did, however, want to prance in the store with 8 hat boxes and smirk, "Big mistake. Big. HUGE." Something tells me it wouldn't have had the same effect.

Yesterday I picked up the phone and made a new appointment (at a new place) for Saturday. I had to speak to three salons before I found one that was available, but I’m finally going to get my bday present.

And I’m going to be relaxed and happy, even if it kills me.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Hello World.

Once upon a time in a land not far away,
A girl almost had a breakdown (to her very own dismay).
She bid farewell to blogger, to writing, and her friends,
In hopes that she might have some time to relax at day's end.
Busy season and reunion plans were her new comrades,
And by "comrades" she thought, "Dear Lord, my life? Is very, very sad."
The good news is there was a light at the longest tunnel known,
Even if at times she might have yelled, "Throw me a freakin' bone!"
But don't you fret because she realized her worries were for naught,
As the reunion was an absolute blast and is the highlight of this plot.
She saw friends she hadn't seen in 10 (which was the whole point),
The weekend was a complete success--not one item in disjoint.
Her group at work finished their season without a single hitch,
Fortunately for everyone she never was a .... mean girl.
She celebrated three years of blogging during her 30-day break,
And one year of being a Texan, a party involving cake.
Her mom and her mom-in-law made 60 look so great,
Her good friend had her baby girl who was well worth the wait.
Her cat's still fat, her husband's still cute (at least that's what she thinks),
The month of June, it turns out, went by in one short blink.
So thank you for your patience and allowing her time to rest,
She asked that I complete this ode by saying you're all the best!

(CLICK HERE to see reunion pictures!)


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