Saturday, March 27, 2010

Those sneaky Acura designers

The short story is that I need a new half shaft. I've never heard of it before and I don't know what it does. I know that it is somehow involved with the CV boot and the transmission and that I am lucky neither of those are damaged. That is great news and I am very fortunate for that. However, the needed part won't be in until Tuesday and it is crucial that I don't drive my car. Long story short: Loaner.

If you are the proud owner of an Acura, you know that their loaner cars are probably one of their strongest marketing points. I took in my '99 CL and they gave me a 2010 TSX with less than 1500 miles on it. Automatically, I imagine myself with this car (which I think is why Acura gives you a brand new car as a loaner. Clever.)The car is super snazzy and (as with all nice cars) I am a little nervous driving it.

I got into the car, adjusted the seat and the mirrors, took a deep breath and turned the key in the ignition. The car started 'ding'ing at me and the annoying bright red letters popped up "Very Low Fuel". No big deal. There was a Smith's on my way home; I'll just swing in and fill 'er up.

I pulled up to the gas station, parked the car, and began the search for the fuel door release button. On my car, this button is found on the floor right next to the trunk release. I looked to the floor where I found the trunk release but no fuel tank release. I reached over to the glove compartment. No button and no owner's manuel. I yanked open the center console. There was an AUX input and a USB drive (nice!) but no button. I looked at the door of the fuel tank but there was no way to pull it open. It was flesh with the car. In a panic I called my dad. My mom used to drive a TSX so I figured they would know better than me.

"Dad. Do you know how to open the door to the fuel tank?" I asked, having been sitting at the gas station for a solid 10 minutes looking for the stupid button.
"It should be on the floor."
"Right. That's what I thought too but there's only a trunk release."
While on the phone with my dad, we went place by place through the car to figure out where I hadn't looked. After exhausting ever possible place the release button could be, my dad said, "Well, call the dealership. They'll know."

Still sitting at the gas station, I called Andy to get the number for the dealership. I was becoming increasingly frustrated with my inability to figure out how a stupid door opens. Andy answered and I quickly asked for him to look up the number of the dealership. I explained the problem.
"Is the button on the floor like on your car?" Andy asked.
Ugh. "No, that's where it should be but it's not," I snapped now 15 minutes into the process of locating the fuel door release.
Andy, being ever helpful went through different spots where it might be. Finally he offered,"Do you want me to come see if I can find it?"
"Andy, if you think you can do a better job looking, by all means, but I really just want the number to the dealership." As Andy began looking up the number for the dealership, I got out of the car to see if i could pry open the door with my bare fingers. I pushed on the fuel door and...dammit.

It popped right open.

"Nevermind," I told Andy. "The effing thing just pops open."

I began fueling the car when my dad called back.

"I just figured it out," I answered the call.
"Yeah. So did mom," he replied.

I hung up the call, not wanting to spontaneously combust from static electricity. I hung my head in shame. Seriously. One of these days I'll learn to use my brain.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Reasons why I love Oregon (from this trip):

1. I saw 2 bald eagles, 1 golden eagle, a great-horned owl, lots of antelope, and countless hawks. I always see the best wildlife on the drive from Ontario to Bend.
2. Any given grocery store has a better beer and wine selection than the BEST state liquor store in Utah. Whole foods really was remarkable. Andy was like a little boy in the candy store. He kept running to take a closer look at all of the imported and Oregon brewed beers. It was pretty adorable.
3. The state troopers are super nice. The first question he asked when he pulled us over was if we had a reason for going so fast. I was floored! What a considerate thing to ask. I only wish we had had a legitimate reason for speeding. Sorry, Sarg. We really do appreciate the verbal warning rather than the reckless driving ticket it could have been.
a. Here’s a shout out to the Idaho Highway patrol. I appreciate your professionalism though your reason for pulling us over was completely ridiculous. I can’t believe you pulled us over on the freeway to ask where our front license plate was.
4. Where else can you be accosted by Greenpeace, random Christian zealots, and hippies making/selling hemp hats in one hour? Let’s not forget the teenage addicts who were able to get three quarters for me because he told me his dog needed food. Yes, I know. I fed his addiction. Shame on me.
5. Despite the hippies, it smells better than any other state I’ve ever been.
6. Grandpa Parker was there and he is an absolute delight. He told us stories about growing up in Southern California (way before it was a popular place to live) with his dog Stub stealing watermelons from his neighbor. What a fantastic dude. He skyrocketed into my top five people ever.
7. The produce. Hands down, delightful.
8. Cindy's cooking. She was so kind to think up dishes that I could have (I don't think I announced that I have Celiac disease) and they were always super tasty. Someday I will be gifted in the ways of culinary arts but until then, I will enjoy the cooking of people like my mom and Cindy.
9. Thom’s church. Every time we visit Bend, we have the opportunity of attending Thom’s church. It is always such a wonderful, uplifting experience. I wish we lived closer so we could go every Sunday. Thom, fantastic sermon, as always.
10. The number 10 reason why I love Oregon is because it’s the best state. To all of you from New York and Texas who are hyperventilating right now, I’ve been to your states and they have a lot to offer. But I maintain that Oregon is the best.

On a bright note: being pulled over twice on the freeway has proven that my window is fixed. It successfully went down AND up twice!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Spazzy McGee

Spazzy McGee is a name I have bestowed upon a male Nurse Practitioner who not only attends every single training class I am in, but feels it necessary to sit next to me at every one.

Spazzy enters the lecture 30 minutes late. He gracefully makes his entrance by creating a loud vortex of stomping feet and rushed movements proving that he was too important to arrive on time. In a state of upheaval, he pulls out his macbook pro, phone, pager, various papers, and writing utensil which inevitably spill into my desk space. Politely (though thoroughly annoyed) I shove them back the three feet to his desk space. After five minutes of disruptive behaviors which vaguely resemble getting prepared for the lecture, he answers his phone (during the class) and loudly stomps back out of the lecture hall. This very scene will happen 3 times over the next hour and a half.

Unfortunately, Spazzy returns. His return is heralded by the loud stomping steps he must take to announce his return. He flops down and loudly sucks his nasal cavity into the back of his throat. He turns to me:
“Where are we?” he asks loudly.

Irritated at his return I whisper in response, “About 45 minutes in.”
“No,” he says at full volume. “Where is the speaker in the power point?”

I would like to smack this guy in the head for sheer lack of manners. “She’s there” I say sarcastically pointing to the projector which obviously had the power point displayed.

Spazzy starts laughing loudly at my response. He then begins a seated dance which ends up lasting for a solid 25 minutes. This dance includes jiggling his legs back and forth (not bouncing his feet, JIGGLING is legs), bobbing his head up and down like a chicken, and loudly tapping out his favorite rhythm on the desk. At this point, everyone in the room dislikes this guy. Even the speaker isshooting him dirty looks.

During Spazzy’s dance, he decides he is bored with the lesson and needs to check his email. His chicken-head-bob stops long enough for him to lean all the way into his computer screen until his nose is touching the screen. He stares and stares. Finally he resumes a ‘normal’ sitting position and continues his chicken dance. He angrily types out an email.

Once the angry email had been typed Spazzy dials his phone and has a fair amount of conversation as he stomps back out of the lecture hall.

The class heaves a sigh of relief. But it doesn’t last long.

Soon, Spazzy returns with three plates of food. One plate holds his very large pretzel, another plate holds a huge serving of cantaloupe, and the third plate is a large mound of cheese. Spazzy grabs five or six chunks of melon in his hand and shovels all of it into his mouth, finishing off this grotesque display with a large slurping sound. Spazzy continues to cow his food, washing each bite down Napoleon Dynamite style by tilting his head all the way back and gulping his beverage.

After Spazzy has satisfied his appetite he, once again, sucks back whatever has crept into his sinuses since the last evacuation. Spazzy puts his hands behind his head and begins leaning back in his chair, rocking so far that in no time at all, his head is resting on the desk behind him. At this point, Spazzy begins talking to himself in response to the speaker. “Ah yes,” he says. “But of course!” he muses.

All of this I could handle. As annoying as he is, I could put up with it for the greater portion of the lecture. What I couldn’t handle was when Spazzy took off his shoes and placed his stocking feet on my chair so his grodie, nasty, stinking feet were touching the outside of my leg. This I could not stomach.

I stood up in the middle of the presentation and loudly whispered to him, “You have GOT to be EFFING KIDDING me!”

I moved across the classroom and was able to catch the last 30 minutes of the 2 hour lecture.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

My Sexy Reynolds

A war has been waged upon my picture of the ‘Sexy Reynolds’ which can be viewed on the right column of this blog just under the ‘random cuties’.

Here is the comment (or shot, if you will) that declared war:

“That's all well and good Candace. But just as soldiers are confused and often misperform as a result of the "fog of war", any reasonable response here, is doubtful due to the "fog of Burt". That picture over there is very disturbing and makes it difficult to take meaning from your writing.
Remove Burt now, and increase your credibility infinitely. Burt sucks and is a big douche.”

First of all, whether Burt sucks or is a big douche is neither here nor there. I don’t believe either of those arguments is accurate but that is not the point. The topic of focus is the picture that I decided to put on my blog when I started it June 2007.

I am grievously sorry that you find the picture of ‘Sexy Reynolds’ just a little too masculine. I understand to some it can be a little intimidating and can cause an unspecified type of envy. My suggestion is that you think long and hard about your person on the inside to be at peace with ‘Sexy Reynolds’ on the outside. If you cannot, might I suggest a counselor?

As this blog has been in existence for roughly three years and this is the first time I have heard anyone even mention ‘Sexy Reynolds’, I feel that you are the minority and are therefore overruled. I am forced to come to the conclusion that people are capable of forming coherent opinions and writing them with the picture present…you seem to the only one with that disability.

Furthermore, I was not aware that this blog awarded me any credibility. Thanks!

Gary, I thought this picture of ‘Sexy Reynolds’ was super hot in 2007, and I think he’s super hot now. ‘Sexy Reynolds’ stays.