Tuesday, July 31, 2012


I just got an iPhone! It's not that I particularly wanted a new phone but my Blackberry was quite literally deteriorating and leaving black spongey bits on my hands and in my bag. Of course, like having anything brand new I couldn't stand the thought of scratching or smudging it so I left the plastic protective cover on.

I was determined to program the thing myself and as long as you keep a clear head this is not a difficult task. Apple practically spoonfeeds you. I set my ringtone (a questionably-geeky SciFi noise), my email and text preferences and my screen saver and shockingly, I managed to download my contacts from one phone to another which my husband hadn't even attempted when he upgraded. Who's a Luddite now??!!!

It was (sad to say) a couple of days before anyone called me on my new phone and when I picked up, I could barely hear anything. Everyone in the car - husband, three kids - immediately lunged for my phone, screaming instructions on how to improve sound quality. Did I turn up the volume? Yes. Was it on mute? No. Did you turn on manual volume control? YES! Thank you, all, but I am not a COMPLETE idiot! I did check the basics!!!!!

Oh, famous last words.

"Did you take the plastic cover off the screen (where the speaker is)?


Friday, July 27, 2012

Life on the Streets is Hard

More and more, recently, I find myself wishing to be deputized. Oh, for a police siren mounted to the top of my car that I can illuminate at will when someone-for-whom-the-rules-don't apply pisses me off. And a nice, shiny gold badge (or a cool flip-out) would go down quite nicely too.

I've been hearing stories all summer about the parents who send their kids to sleepaway camp with two cell phones because they are not supposed to have phones at all and one might get confiscated. I know I've already described the mother who only put down one instrument on the choice form because she wanted her kid to get the violin. Why don't the rules apply to them??!

There is a sour-faced woman who parks every morning in the fire lane outside the coffee shop and runs in for her morning cuppa. I know this because my kids catch the bus for camp just outside said cafe and many mornings this woman is told to move her car to let the bus pull up. But she persists in parking there every morning, leaving her engine running, and ignoring actual parking spots not 20 feet away.

Well, this morning I decided to get a coffee after the camp bus left. I was third in line, when this lady parked out front, strode in looking harried and asked the woman at the front of the line if she could cut in because she was in a rush. She didn't ask the rest of us and if she had, I would have told her to either make her @###%^$% coffee at home OR, if she was in SUCH a hurry, go without.

To add insult to injury, after she got her coffee she stopped to chat for 10 minutes with the woman who let her cut! Car idling (and polluting).

What exactly are the paramenters for making a citizen's arrest I wonder ...

Monday, July 23, 2012

You Cannot Bee Serious!

The kids were at camp all day last week so, having let a few things slide, I made myself a to-do list and began working through it methodically. Some of the things on it were fairly urgent as you can tell by the fact that it took me until Thursday to get around to calling JP McHale about our bee problem.

We hadn't seen many bees since that horrible day in June but once in a while we'd find two or three clinging to the curtains in my daughter's room. So two guys came out, took one look at the nest, took one look at each other and said, "We can't help you." Apparently, we have honey bees nesting in our wall/roof and honey bees are officially endangered.

So I now have a bee-keeper coming out tomorrow. On the phone he estimated the removal to cost several thousand dollars (he, himself only charges $200/hour and is "usually done in a day") which will include finding the hive, usually 15-20 feet into the wall between two studs, opening up either the roof or the wall, removing the hive and taking the bees to their new home and re-insulating and closing up the roof or wall.

My husband, never one to spend a dime saving when he could kill, suggested getting someone in to just blast the little critters. Mr. Bee-keeper replied that while not exactly illegal, this would not be the advised plan of action because we would then have 30-60,000 bee carcasses and a hive and about 5 gallons of honey rotting/pouring down the inside of our walls which would no doubt attract other, more aggressive varmits.

Guess I'll have to wait a while longer to tick this off my list. Next up: calling JFK's Lost and Found to see if they found the iTouch my son left on the plane. Yeah. Good luck with THAT.