Archive for March, 2007

Unearthed after a funeral

Funerals  have been a big topic in the past year. Almost all of my friends (and me) have had grandparents or family members die — all of which were sad occasions.

But in nearly every instance, we were able to find something funny.

For example, about 20 minutes before grandpa’s funeral (which was the day before my birthday), a friend of mine slipped me a birthday card that contained a half-naked man and a big bar of chocolate.

And when riding back from the cemetery after the burial, the pastor inquired about whether I’d paid out the $500 bounty to the person who finds me a husband. (I’d offered this to a kindergartner at a church potluck the month prior. The pastor happened to be sitting next to him.)

So a few weeks ago, Mom was at a funeral for a old man who used to live down the road. She ran into his granddaughter, who is my age and occasionally came to church events when she was in the area, and then we were in the same sorority in college.

The granddaughter asked what I was up to, and mom gave her the short story, but suggested that she check out my blog — she could google Galloping Nelly and find it.

After the funeral, it occurred to mom that if one googles Galloping Nelly, one might find porn. So she tried it.

Guess what she found?

Andover Roots.

Yes, my brother had been blogging for a month and hadn’t told anyone. The clue that called him out was referring to himself as the brother of Galloping Nelly. Word travels fast by horseback.

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In comparison to last week…

…I am boring.

Some weeks just go like that.

That certainly doesn’t mean I’m bored. Most certainly not. In fact, I had to slip poor Beth a $20 to fetch me some food at 1:30 today because I was literally in back-to-back meetings from 8-6. (And boy was that ham on cibatta good!)

Although, I have done a fair amount of interpretive dance at the office in passing between meetings. Stress ballet is my favorite. (Thank you Heidi, for gifting me this useful skill.)

And I did get caught whistling in the elevator.

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Shall we dance, or shall we sing?

Tonight I was all excited to get home and watch American Idol — courtesy of my Tivo. Unfortunately I’d ranked Dancing with the Stars one notch higher, so my evening entertainment plans didn’t quite work out. (A recap show, AND a results show??? Come ON! Haven’t we had enough?)

Despite this small mishap, my life has changed because of Tivo. For a mere $13.95 a month, I get to watch my favorite reality shows, when I want, without commercials. If Chris Sligh is boring on Idol, I fast forward. If Melinda makes me cry, I rewind. If I happen to be watching live TV and need to get a bowl of cereal, I can pause.

Truly, it’s amazing. If only the TV’s on the treadmills at the gym had it.

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I have gas!

Saturday morning Mom, Dad and Brother DIY arrived with two bags of tools to save me from my laundry peril!

First order of business: scope the place, then sit down to make a plan.

Making plans

After searching around the building, lurking in the dank basement by the breaker box and snooping in every nook and cranny in my place, the experts decided to stay the course.

This necessitated cutting a hole by the tub, so that we could snake the pipe through the 8-inch discrepancy between the kitchen back wall and the tunnel in the tub.

Getting to work

We managed to make coffee in the mornings, but cooking was a little difficult with all my appliances in the center of the room.

Kitchen before

Mom kept busy hemming one of the flowergirl dresses (for the wedding this weekend — yikes!).

Mom hemming

After several trips to Home Depot, the pipe was finally all pieced together, and they closed up the hole.

Mid-way

Hole in wall

Good thing Brother DIY has every tool on the planet, and the expertise to use them. He did a super job mudding the hole.

Patched

Meanwhile Dad worked behind the fridge. And then he fixed the deadbolt on my front door.

Dad in kitchen

This morning we had a small panic attack when we realized the very hot running dishwasher didn’t have any water going through it. Fortunately it was only a kink in the water line — not a fried appliance.

Darren in kitchen

Once everything was done, Mom packed up the toolbox for the trip home.

Mom in toolbox

Mom, the ultimate painting perfectionist, make the hole look better than new.

Finished bathroom

Voila! I have an outlet! And gas!

Finished closet

Now all I need is permission from the board to drill a hole in the back wall of the closet for a vent…

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Starstruck at the Truck Show

Friday morning I set out from my sub-standard hotel room at 10:30, and once I got to the front desk, I learned that my cab had come and gone. Fortunately a green SUV taxi arrived just as I walked out the front door, and the driver was taking a couple guys to the Fairgrounds. They insisted that I ride along. (After I showed them some leg.)

Once at the show, I had about 40 minutes to accomplish two things:

  • Sit in a bunch of competitive trucks
  • Take a photo of a booth of a potential client

So once I stowed my suitcase behind the info desk in my client’s booth, I ran over to the west wing (far!) to take the photo. Then I ran back to the main hall to hop up in a bunch of different tractors.

It’s tradition for the Peterbilt booth to have ladies in evening gowns hanging out, and they even have a grand piano with ongoing entertainment. I’d heard about this day before, but I’d completely forgotten until I literally ran into the piano as I was leaping from truck to truck.

The skinny pianist was standing by the bench in full make-up and a bright red formal, and as I swooshed by, I realized it was Lorie Line! She’s one of my all-time favorites — even better than Jim Brickman.

I stopped dead in my tracks, turned around, and went up to her gushing about what a fan I am. I was a blubbering idiot.

Yes, you never know what you’re going to find at a truck show.

You can download sheetmusic or buy mp3’s at www.LorieLine.com. She has some great arrangements of old classics, show tunes and hymns. I especially like her Canon in D and Blowin in the Wind.

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A hotel with a phallic obsession

On Wednesday, after I retrieved the box for my meeting from the baggage claim, I headed to the bar at 21C Musuem Hotel to meet up with clients.

When the cab pulled up, it was clear the place was cutting-edge. Very modern and chic — something you’d expect to see in NYC, not Louisville. I walked into the bar, sat down with the four guys, and didn’t even see the 12 photos of boobs next to my head. About 10 minutes into the meeting, one of the guys asked me if the photos offended me, and for the first time I looked up to see what was on the wall.

There, each in 16×16 size, was a whole grid of black and white photos of a woman from the neck to the waist, naked, except for long black gloves. Each photo showed her “framing” her goods with her gloved arms in a different way. And her goods weren’t small.

As we were getting ready to leave, another guy asked if I’d seen the statues in the lobby. I couldn’t pass this one up, so I excused myself to the bathroom.

There were probably no less than 10 exposed penises in the lobby (on statues). Then, in the restroom, there was a whole write-up about voyeurism, explaining all of the little TV screens in the walls that had videos of people’s eyes, like they’re watching you.

Bizarre.

And I thought I’d seen enough bizarre stuff in 24 hours.

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Mullet Patrol

Ah, truckers. They’re such interesting fellows. And many of them have fantastic mullets — with the long part flowing to their waists.

Then there are the ladies pulling their little shopping carts around (or riding three-wheeled mopeds) asking for lapel pins from every manufacturer.

Tonight I went to the client’s customer event, which was held in conjunction with the Stars and Stripes pimped-out truck contest. You should see some of these rigs. Especially the tractors that are so low they can’t even clear a mouse. One even looked like a Gatsby-style convertible — with the 5th wheel hitch a good 10 feet behind the seats.

One of my clients took me for a tour of the “bobtails” (aka tractors without trailers), which were quite a sight.

MATS

After the chicken-n-biscuits-n-beer event in a steamy white tent, we headed to 4th Street — the bar district — and landed at Hard Rock. By the time a few of us escaped down the street to Makers Mark bar, a group of at least 30 had amassed.

And tonight became a repeat of last night — Lori with the boys, with the boys drinking whiskey and smoking cigars that smell like manure. Last night they made me taste their bourbon flights, but a cigar was completely out of the question. Tonight I managed to avoid both. Except the smell that is lingering like a cloud around me as I write.  

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