It’s time to reveal all about the weekend wrap-up, but first I simply must share that the high and low points of my day came in rapid succession this evening. I swung through a complete spectrum of emotion, and am still feeling a bit off-balance.
First: I have a toothearache. Either I have an earache that is also affecting my jaw, or I have a toothache which is referring pain to my ear. I cannot tell which. But it is making me fairly miserable. Bah.
Second: It arrived last week, and I finally tested out my replacement robot. In spite of my throbbing ear/jaw, watching this thing zip around my family room and then emptying all sorts of unspeakable grime from its innards was immensely gratifying. I totally would’ve licked it if I hadn’t seen what it had been touching.
So that was my day. Rather, my evening. Please try to contain your excitement. (Though I am open to any home remedies for a sore ear, provided they don’t involve anything gross. We like to leave matters that link “bodily orifice” and “disgusting” to Monkey, thankyouverymuch.)
Onward, to reveal the truths from yesterday!
1) Deflowered. I went to Sonic for the first time ever and got a cherry limeade that simultaneously made my tastebuds sing and sent my brain into overdrive with the gazillion calories of pure sugar. It was the most wondrous beverage Iâ€™ve ever had. I think itâ€™s a very good thing that there arenâ€™t any Sonics up here.
This is TRUE. I had never been to a Sonic before. I have had cherry limeade, but NOTHING like what I was given at Sonic. That was cherry lime heroinade, I’m pretty sure. (And when you look at it THAT way, the price certainly is a bargain.)
2) Bad boys bad boys, whatcha gonna do? While eating lunch on the UGA campus on Saturday, Otto and I enjoyed the varied and interesting sights of a college town on game day: People from all walks of life clad in red and black, latecomers to the game desperately seeking parking, girls with pompomsâ€¦ and a couple being busted for indecent exposure.
This was a trick item, as it is technically FALSE. It’s entirely true except for the last two words—the couple was ticketed for open containers (public drinking), not indecent exposure. Although I must say that I was astounded at the number of scantily-clad young women we saw strolling around. I guess I’ve forgotten what college towns are like. And I am old and curmudgeonly for feeling that shirts ought to consist of more than a largish rubberband strung across the nipples.
3) Triple dog dare. On Friday night, Otto dared me to marry him. Right then. Like, â€œIâ€™ll look up a justice of the peace in the phone book RIGHT NOW.â€ (So. Romantic.) I declined.
I hate to break it to everyone who was so sure this was ridiculous, but this item is 100% TRUE. And my darling Otto is currently digging himself a very DEEP and DARK hole by insisting that REALLY, he was saying he couldn’t live another day without me, and the romance was IMPLIED, and I am now on record as having TURNED HIM DOWN. I hold that “I am not going to marry you ON A DARE” is also pretty clear on the IMPLIED “but if you ask me nicely I might stop kicking you and consider it,” but there you go. Hey, some women dream their entire lives about meeting that one special man who can argue semantics endlessly. Look at me so lucky to have met him early and to now have him doing all of those special things like offering to fetch the yellow pages so that we can elope.
4) Dude, what did that chicken ever do to YOU? Sunday was spent preparing for, throwing, and cleaning up after a big barbecue (which was a blast). One of Ottoâ€™s friends came over early to set up his grill and cook a couple of chickensâ€¦ which he did by shoving beer cans up their nether regions, placing them on rack stands, and finally stuffing onions into their neck cavities before placing them on the grill. Where they stared at me, a desperate plea for help readily apparent on their onions (which was where their heads shouldâ€™ve been).
Yes, it is TRUE that I have now witnessed beer can chicken being prepared, and I ate it anyway. It was delicious. But watching the prep was disturbing in a way I hadn’t imagined possible. I wanted to apologize to the chickens. Instead I kept telling them to stop staring at me.
5) It doesnâ€™t mean the president isnâ€™t a warmongering ass, though. Twice while in the atrium of the Atlanta airport today, a group of servicemen (being shipped out, by all appearances) came through and received STANDING OVATIONS from the other passengers. Which actually made me teary. And I have a small, shrivelled stone of a heart.
This one is TRUE. On all counts. He’s an ass, people stood and clapped, and I was moved. But mostly it just breaks my heart to see all of those young people looking so alive when they might not be for much longer.
6) I think sheâ€™s just avoiding me. I was supposed to see Joshilyn on this trip, but she is working too hard and was sick and stressed and miserable, so we did not manage to coordinate it. But! She assures me that if I still like her and sheâ€™s still alive when sheâ€™s done killing herself with this new book, I may get to see her then.
I was surprised at how many people doubted that this one was TRUE. Although I arrived after Joss’ appearance in Athens, we had planned to meet for lunch before I left on Monday. But she came back from the Decatur Book Festival sick and tired and stressed so we agreed to postpone. Also, we were chatting on the phone while I sat at the gate waiting for my plane, and she gasped and announced she needed to hang up immediately. Something about having deleted an entire chapter of her WIP by accident. At that moment I forgave her for not meeting me for lunch. (Hope you got it back, darling.)
7) A taste of the country life. I took a ride in an old rusty pick-up truck that took three tries to get started, periodically squealed, and had a bed full of rain water. We filled it with pine straw and prayed the truck would start again for the return trip.
Well, Otto doubts my veracity because, in his words, “it’s not that rusty,” but this one is TRUE. He keeps a truck around for errands just such as this, and I got to hear all about how you can’t use bark mulch in the south. I wisely remained silent on how I’ve often thought that the landscaping with pine straw looks as though people just went insane and sprinkled old spaghetti everywhere. Also, PAYING for pine straw? You want pine straw, come to my yard. I’ll give you all the freaking pine straw you want.
8) I would, but I just peed myself. Someone I met at the barbecue and with whom I had exchanged about a dozen words offered to let me drive his car. This car. I really, really, REALLY wanted to. But I declined.
*siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiigh* I’m still regretting my decision, but this is TRUE. I was afraid to drive it. All I could think was that I’d end up clipping something and then not only would I have damaged the most beautiful car I’d ever seen, but Otto would be mortified. I’d just spent the afternoon trying not to make a complete jackass out of myself in front of a few dozen of his friends and colleagues. Mission more or less accomplished, I just figured my luck had run out. I opted, instead, to mostly stand there and murmur “pretty!” a few hundred times, which I’m sure was impressive.
9) Deep breaths. So, you might recall that on my last trip to Georgia, I met my first palmetto bug in the bathroom early one morning. Iâ€™m pleased to report that the bathrooms were all clear, this time. But one dive-bombed me in the kitchen while I was washing dishes one night. (In the case of the palmetto bug, absence definitely DOES make the heart grow fonder. When they are absent, my heart is a lot happier.)
Praise the Lord, this one is FALSE. I had no encounters of the insect kind on this trip. Well, other than the butterflies at the Botanical Gardens.
10) He knows me well. Otto was kind enough to grab my purse and suitcase as we were getting ready to head to the airport today. I discovered that heâ€™d filled a ziploc bag with assorted M&Ms and Hersheyâ€™s miniatures and stuffed it in my purse. Now THAT is romantic.
Yes, Otto loaded me up with chocolate before I came home; that’s TRUE. And I had thought he was just being adorable and sweet, giving me a bunch of the goodies leftover from the party. It wasn’t until we spoke on the phone that night that we had the following exchange:
Him: … but it’s a good thing I gave you all the leftover chocolate.
Me: Huh? No you didn’t.
Him: Yes I did.
Me: No you didn’t. There’s still a bowl of chocolates on the counter.
Him: No there’s… oh, for crying out loud.
I thought he was giving me the chocolate because he knows I love chocolate. He just wanted it out of the house. But what can you expect from a man who tries to GOAD you into matrimony? Some conveniently revisionist history with a side of teasing, plus miniature candy bars, that’s what.
And now I must put my sore ear down on the pillow for a while, so that tomorrow I can get up and send my Roomba off into another room of my house. I think it’s important to have goals.