Saturday, December 27, 2008

a medical emergency and a post-Christmas retail safari

Some of you know that my poor sweet hubby suffers from sciatica. He's been a LOT better for the past year or so, but this morning it flared up and he was in terrible pain. It being a Saturday and all, I had to take him to the urgent care clinic, Athens Regional First Care. Let me say, we've been there a couple times before (for his back and the time Bitty Kitty bit me and almost gave me the hydrophoby) and they are always super nice and able to get us in and out pretty quickly.

But today, the Saturday after Christmas, we did not get in and out so quickly. In fact, we were there for over two hours. For the first hour or so until they called him back, we sat in the main waiting room which was cram packed with sick people. I fucking hate doctor's office waiting rooms. The air thrums with germs and filth and disease, and it makes my skin tingle. But this place was extra-special-toxic. Looking around, I was certain that we were going to catch something awful like the flu or the cancer or the teenage pregnancy or the inbreeding.

Anne assured me that we were not at risk for catching the teenage pregnancy because once you turn twenty, you're immune. Good thing because, as she pointed out, that shit lasts like 18 years. Disgusting.

I tried to read my new David Sedaris book, When you are Engulfed in Flames, but I had to stop because it was making me laugh too hard to survive on the tiny, shallow breaths I was convinced would prevent me from inhaling lethal doses of the inbreeding or the gonorrhea.

Even worse than all the pathogens in the air was this petri dish whose mother was letting her sit on the fucking floor and steep in disease and filth. I longed for the peppermint-flavored (scented?) bottle of hand sanitizer I'd received from the elder Quesos for Christmas so I could pluck the girl gingerly off the floor and douse her in it, saving her life and the lives of all who might come into contact with her before her impending demise. But then she did the unthinkable and sealed her fate - she wriggled across the carpet on her belly toward the bathroom, stretched across the threshold, and rubbed her chubby little hands all over the bathroom floor.

Dead kid walking, I thought and wished I could possibly cover my face with my scarf without alerting everyone to the fact that I am a colossal asshole.

Over an hour after we'd arrived, they called Ryan's name, and he hobbled to the exam room. Gasping for air, I bolted outside to spend the remainder of the wait in the car.

Another hour later, my honey emerged from the clinic, shot full of cortisone and armed with prescriptions for sundry medicinal delights medically necessary pain relievers to be used only as directed, without exception.

I took him home and headed out to fill his prescriptions and run some errands, including picking up a book he really wanted.

I dropped the prescriptions off at Walgreen's and stopped by the Jittery Joe's at Alps before going to Kroger. Can I just say that I love that Jittery Joe's? I like Jittery Joe's in general, but sometimes at the one at Five Points I don't feel cool enough. The staff at the Alps Jittery Joe's however, are always sooooooooo friggin' nice.


Plus, they have the bestest ever mochas and hot chocolates. They put all other chocolatey beverages to shame. Mmm.

So I went to Kroger, and whenever I have to grocery shop by myself it is such a fucking project. This is because I no longer know how to grocery shop. Here's what grocery shopping means for me now - Ryan makes a shopping list, we go to Kroger together, he does all the shopping and cart-pushing, and I walk beside him and talk.

Sometimes, actually, he steps away from the cart, and I start pushing it by accident. This usually lasts only a few seconds though, just until I realize what's happening and say, "Ugh, why am I doing this?" And then he takes over, and all is right once more.

What all this means is that I have no flippin' clue where anything in the grocery store is located, and I've even forgotten the standard grocery-aisle groupings. Would the peanut butter be with the jelly? Or the bread? Or the nuts? I really have no idea.

One hour and forty million circuits around the grocery store later, I finally left with a small basket of vegetables, nothing more. If Ryan doesn't get back on his feet soon, we may starve (which is fine for my part, because I've given up food for New Year's anyway; c.f. full moon/cheese wheel/piggy teakettle face).

Next, I went to Borders in search of a Batman graphic novel for Ryan, The Killing Joke.

I located the graphic novel section easily, but then I was stumped. There were rows and rows of books labeled "Manga," and the manga section seemed to have eaten the graphic novel section entirely, as all the shelves under the "Graphic Novels" sign contained brightly colored paperbacks with what looked like cartoon toddler porn stars on the covers. That, based on my inspection of the books actually shelved under the "Manga" sign, was manga.


Upon inquiry to one of Borders' finest, I was informed that they "have that book somewhere, but nobody could find a copy last time a customer asked." As I walked back to my car, I caught sight of my reflection in the storefront glass and thought, "Why, I haven't gotten fat at all. My ass looks like J. Lo's! I'm not fat; I'm shapely." I was pleased.

I decided I would not return home to my poor sweetie empty-handed, so I set out for Barnes and Noble, just a short trip up Atlanta Highway.


Note that Google offers walking directions. It is Not Far.

First, I popped across the street to Walgreen's and picked up Ryan's goodies medicine, and then headed toward Barnes & Noble. En route, I decided to stop at Target. I had a gift card, and I really needed some new shoes because last week my cat barfed INSIDE the flats I wear every day. I've been freezing my arse off (my toes, actually) in flip flops ever since. As I headed to the shoe department, I tried to remain oblivious to all the cute goodies demanding that I purchase them.

And would you believe, no you won't, and I was SO MAD that I didn't have my camera in my purse when I saw this shit because these photos from Target's website do not do this footwear travesty justice:

AGH!! This. Shoe. Is. VELOUR. And. BEDAZZLED. AND, I'm not sure exactly why this makes me throw up, but the freaking peep-toe-hole is triangular, and can I just say itisfuckingawful?!

Now imagine several rows of those purple bedazzled nightmares mixed in with numerous pairs of these monsters:

I was totally like

Ugh. Shudder. Cringe. I know you want me to stop so badly, that you're in pain, that you're just dying from all the ugly, but there's more, and. You. Need. To. Know.

You might think this isn't so bad. If you are, you're thinking wrong. The "jewels" on the toe are fucking HUUUUUUUUGE, and.......

It comes in colors. I'm sorry to do this to you, I really am, but it's for your own good, like in V for Vendetta when V shaved Natalie Portman's hair and tortured her and then she learned to be free and was grateful all that crap. I am setting you free.

Brace yourself.


Okay, here's the last one, and I won't blame you if you squinch your eyes up a little bit to mitigate the impact.

Anyone fancy a trip to Neverland Ranch?

Now let us never speak of this again.

Because they were comfy and seemed versatile, I settled on these

which I had previously flirted with purchasing but didn't because I found them too pricey at $25. Today, however, with cold damp toes and a gift card in my wallet, $25 seemed just right. They are cuter in real life than they are in the photo, too. This is not their best side.

I purchased my new shoes, put them on immediately, and headed Barnes and Nobleward. Recall that from my original starting point of Borders, the total distance to Barnes and Noble was only 1.3 miles. Target is roughly halfway between the two stores, so I really had just over half a mile to drive til I arrived at B&N.

I arrived at my destination about forty minutes later. Love that post-holiday-sale traffic.

Oh. And as if those shoes weren't nauseating enough, while I was in the car I heard a commercial for Macy's after-holiday sales, advertising "...the hottest new trends blah blah blah blah blah ACID WASH JEANS blah blah blah blah blah..."


There simply are not words.

I entered Barnes and Noble and located the Graphic Novel section, which has as yet only been slightly overrun by manga. As I perused the titles, a teenage boy approached me and asked, "Ma'am,-do-you-know-who-you-look-like?"

I might have been clued in by his oddly stilted speech or the fact that he was holding a crumpled script, or I might instead have let my absurd vanity get carried away in inexplicable anticipation of hearing, "Anne Hathaway" or "Emmy Rossum" or some such other dazzling brunette. I was especially flattered that I was about to receive a stunning compliment while greasy-haired and sporting the rather unusual and only partially clean assortment of clothing I'd thrown on in my haste to get Ryan to the doctor this morning.

I smiled warmly and replied with what I believed was convincingly humble innocence, "No, who?"

"You-look-like-uhhhhh......." came his hesitant reply.

"Who?" I prompted.

"You-look-like-the-lady-who's-gonna-gimme-some-money-to-sponsor-my-trip-to-Disney-World!" he recited triumphantly.

I stood blinking for a moment and then returned to reality.

"Oh, right," I said as I recalled that I have gained a thousand pounds and now have a cheese-wheel face as well as a donkey butt. Never mind the fact that teenage boys do not walk up to poorly-dressed tired-looking married ladies and compare them to movie stars.

"Well," I lied, "I don't actually have any cash, but good luck." I only had a hundred dollar bill, and my Christmas spirit had reached it zenith and begun to wane days ago.

He pouted theatrically and asked if I was sure I didn't have any cash.

"Yes, I'm sure. But, seriously, that was a great line," I assured him. "It'll definitely work for you at some point."

He thanked me, smiled pleasantly, and left to seek out his next victim.

Happily, B&N had Ryan's book, which I purchased. As I exited the building, I again noticed my reflection in the windows, but apparently B&N has fat windows. What had been a fabulous, curvy J. Lo booty just an hour previous was now a fucking sofa. I did not look like J Lo, I looked like Rachael fucking Ray.


(By the way, I tried to find a good photo of Rachael Ray's be-mom-jeaned booty, and all I could find were fake ones of her head pasted on pictures of chicks with gigantic asses. I ask you, what was the point of this? Didn't Nature photoshop her well enough already? I also found lots of pictures from her FHM photoshoot that were retouched to svelte hilarity.)

To punish myself further, I headed next door to Old Navy. Yesterday as Anne and I discussed the post-holiday shopping madness, she commented, "I don't get going shopping the day after Christmas. Like, didn't I get enough shit yesterday? Why do I need to go out and get more?"

Excellent, excellent question, Anne, and I pondered it myself as I succumbed to the siren's song of SIXTY PERCENT OFF STOREWIDE!!!!

At Old Navy, I was disgruntled to encounter a wall o' casual flats for $10 a pair. Looking down, I realized I was wearing bowling shoes. Twenty-five dollar, shiny, silver, now sweated in and unreturnable bowling shoes that can't even actually be worn bowling.

Well, shit.

As I browsed, I recalled why I never shop at Old Navy. All they have there are like sweats and pajamas. They used to have cute stuff, dresses, nice(ish) wool skirts, etc. Now they have hoodies. Even sweaters that look decent at first glance have a fucking hood. Why? Wouldn't it just be cheaper to leave the hood off and charge the same price? Or does everyone actually want all of their clothing to double as gymwear?


I got a sweater for Ryan, and a nice blouse (one of the two in the store without a hood) and a silver puffy coat for me.

On the drive home, I heard an ad for Q100's New Year's celebration. In collaboration with Jezebel magazine, they are throwing a party called.....



Somebody better get fired over that. And then they better hire me because I can come up with way better body-fluid inspired puns than that crap.

When I got home, I looked over my purchases and discovered that I have been harboring a unconscious desire to be an astronaut:

Or a robot, or the Tin Man, or a garbage can.

Oh well. At least I've got a jump on a Halloween costume for next year.


Since many of you are nice and wondering how Ryan is, he's doing okay. He's loaded up on happy pills pain relievers, and I just sent him to bed. His primary health problem right now, albeit unbeknownst to him, is that there is an excellent chance I may smother him tonight because he is snoring so loudly that I can hear him across the house. Seriously, I thought it was bass from a car stereo because it's rumbling the walls, but no - it's just my husband.

Ahh, marriage. The honeymoon never really ends, does it?


Michelle said...

So, in my moving to a new house I ran across a bunch of pictures. Then I jump online tonight and pee myself laughing at your blog. God, my pictures don't do justice to how funny and wonderful you are

jeannie said...

Awww! :)

That would be the nicest comment ever if it hadn't prompted me to picture myself at age thirteen.


Reagan said...

1. Alps Jittery Joe's = location of my first date with my Ryan. Heart it.

2. I read this post sitting in my OLD NAVY HOODIE with my closet comfortably full of HOODED SWEATERS FROM OLD NAVY. Ahhhh! (Hey, I needed new clothes fast and it was close and cheap! I'll do better, I promise and I understand if you can't/won't talk to me until then) :)