The Crud-That-Has-No-Name

What is this stuff going around that is making people so sick? Whatever it is, it is very contagious. First my son was coughing, and then my honey started. I knew it was only a matter of time. I tried uselessly to avoid all the rest of the family who were barking like dogs.

My first symptom was the headache. I rationalized it away as a migraine and popped one of my migraine pills. Then it was sinus congestion. Probably my allergies, I reasoned, and took a decongestant. But what’s the point? No amount of hand washing, Lysol spray, social distancing and denial could prevent it. My throat began to burn and my lungs ached. I had it, whatever it is.

Soon I too was coughing my lungs out just like the rest of them.

I’ve already had Covid, but maybe I have it again. It sure felt the same. But my test was negative. I’ve had the Covid vaccine and boosters, five shots to be exact. I also had a seasonal flu shot. But viruses mutate and what works for one virus may not work for another. Whatever this no-name disease is, it is spreading like wildfire.

It seems that when you think you have Covid for sure, you have the flu. And when you think you have the flu, you have some other virus, and when you think it is a virus, it is a cold, and when you think it is a cold, it is the crud-that-has-no-name. If it had a name, would it be easier to treat?

Cough, cough, COUGH! Not a polite little cough that you can cover with a tissue, but gut-wrenching, flame-throwing, agonizing coughs from the pits of hell. The kind of coughing that makes your tonsils vibrate, fluid run from your nose and tears flow from your eyes. I should have gone to the doctor when it first started, but now I might as well ride it out. Nothing helps. Sudafed and cough drops do about as much good as anything.

I haven’t slept in two nights. Did you know you cannot both cough and sleep at the same time? Drink plenty of liquid, they say. So I did. I take mini-naps, wake up coughing and go to the bathroom. And in the unlikely event that I do fall asleep, I can count on honey to have a coughing spasm and wake me up anyhow.

Speaking of coughing spasms, at some point during the night I must have sucked sinus drainage down my throat which clogged my airway, and I narrowly escaped suffocation with a coughing fit worthy of the mucus Olympics. After that, I was afraid to go back to sleep, so I decided to get up and hoped my head would be less stuffy when I was setting up.

There is not much on TV after 3 A.M. except infomercials and crime shows, so I watched a couple people get murdered. By then I was so desensitized to death that I didn’t much care whether I lived or not.

Today I have accomplished nothing – nada – zero. I have no appetite, not even for the proverbial chicken soup. I forced myself to consume some spicy Mexican food as I figured the heat might help open my head. My nose was a waterfall after that. I dread the thought of another night. I suppose I will get over this granddaddy of all crud-that-has-no-name sooner or later.

I hope you were wearing a mask while you read this and stayed six feet away from your computer. Please wash your hands for 20 seconds if you touched your keyboard. As for me, I’m going to blow my nose and go to bed before I collapse.

Copyright 2023 Sheila Moss

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Message from the Car

Dear Vehicle Owner:

I think it is about time that we get a few things clear, and I don’t mean my windshield. I am not satisfied with the way you are treating me.  First of all, you are driving me too fast. I am not a sports car. I thought for sure you were going to rear end that little Subaru in front of us the other day. It was so afraid it changed lanes. Please slow down! I do not want to end up in the junkyard before my life is half over.

Then there is the matter of hygiene. When is the last time you took me to the car wash? You can’t remember, can you? I am filthy. It is embarrassing. When I was parked next to the shiny new Ferrari in the parking garage, I could not even blink my lights at her as I knew her motor would be turned off by my appearance.

My interior is also a disgrace. I look like a motor home. What is all that stuff in my cargo area? I’ll tell you what it is: junk, pure junk — ice scrapers, sun shields, umbrellas, sunglasses, paper towels, CD’s, old receipts, broken tools, and empty paper cups. Stuff rolls around in my cargo area gathering dust and giving me an interior complex.

The gas you have been pumping in me gives me indigestion, always from the cheapest gas station you can find, always regular, never premium. Am I not worthy of a little special treatment once in a while? You just take it for granted that I will continue to be dependable regardless of whether you keep my tank full or my oil changed. One of the days I am going to break down and leave you stranded. That will serve you right. R

My tire treads are starting to get a bit worn. It is difficult to live life in the fast lane, never knowing whether I will have a blowout. Do you ever check my tires? Do you want to have to call the Emergency Road Service again to rescue us on the Interstate? All the other cars drive by honking at me and shaking their tailpipes. I feel like such a loser.

Have you even read my user’s manual? What if one of my dashboard warning lights came on? You would not have the faintest idea what to do and would just keep driving. I can’t tell you anything. You will not listen to warnings. When you burn up my engine maybe you will be satisfied.

All you do is play my radio. Do you ever consider that I might want to listen to another station? If I try to change the dial to something soft and soothing, you change it right back. You never listen to Car Talk or Bumper to Bumper. That is why I try to freeze you to death with my air conditioner. I am hoping you will get the message.

Life is a bore, spending every day in a parking garage, never going on a long road trip or seeing any sights. Other cars have been to California, Florida, or Yellowstone. I have nothing to brag about, no national parks, no trips to the beach or mountains, not even a getaway at the race track.

You are going to wear me out and then trade me in on a younger model. I know your plan. I give you the best years of my life and what do I get in return? Hoodwinked. I’m getting old in car years. But I might as well shut off my windshield wipers and blow my horn. I suppose there is nothing a car can do about feeling used.  

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

Posted in Automotive, Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Casual Dining

We’ve been invited to eat out tonight,” said Honey.

“Okay,” I replied, thinking of all the things I had planned to do when I got off work. Plus, it had been a stressful week of reports, deadlines, and demanding assignments. I was tired.

Maybe it will be a good thing, I thought; maybe it will help me unwind. “Where are we going,” I asked.

“Some place close.”

They have a lot of nice restaurants over near the new mall. Or maybe we can go to Bonefish Grill and use the gift card left from Christmas.  Visions of steak, soft music and immaculate waiters danced in my head.

When I got to the car, Honey pealed out into traffic and headed in the wrong direction.

“Where are you going? I thought we were going someplace close to home.”

“They want to go to Rivergate to Hooters.” I don’t know why Honey had the idea we were going to Murfreesboro. My enthusiasm was fading rapidly.  

Hooters is not the Bonefish Grill. It is a beer and wings kind of place. I’ve heard of it, but I can’t remember ever going there. Not that these places can’t be fun, but not tonight. But we were on the Interstate headed north in bumper-to-bumper rush hour traffic.

We were not even sure how to get there. I turned on the GPS on my phone for directions. “Rivergate Wall is straight ahead, take exit 96,” said the phone.

Eventually we arrived in spite of the traffic and directions to Rivergate Wall instead of Rivergate Mall. We pulled into the parking lot and found the other couple sitting on a picnic bench on a patio with a fabulous view of the parking lot. I climbed over the picnic table bench and sat down. I guess this is what is called casual dining.

Our friend went inside to find a waitress dressed in orange shorts and a tank-top with Hooter across the front. Oh, boy!

“Do you want to eat,” she asked? Oh boy, again. Does she think we came to admire the view?

“Could we get some menus?”

“Sure,” she said and brought us three menus for four people. Most of the entrees were appetizers. I ordered fish & chips – big mistake – I should have ordered a burger, something grilled instead of soaked in grease.

Meanwhile, the smell of beer from the table next to us and the scent of gasoline and exhaust from the parking lot floated in the air. I didn’t need anything to drink as the fumes were making me high.

The waitress wandered around looking for the right table with every order that came out. Did you order cheese sticks? Who gets the tater tots? Apparently, Hooters is popular for reasons other than good service or food.

I gingerly tried a slice of fried dill pickle. They were as bad as they sound.

Across the street someone decided to mow a lawn and stir up the dust and insects. The sound of the mower whirred on and on, so loud we could hardly hear the people at the next table who were on the fourth or fifth round of beer.

Redneck ambiance.

The waitress finally found four forks and one knife, which we shared.

A guy at the table next to us climbed up on the patio rail and drank his beer. I don’t blame him. I felt like sitting on the rail with a beer myself, and I don’t even drink beer.

“We will call you next time we come,” said the couple, as we waved goodbye.

“Make an immediate U-turn,” said my phone, which I thought I had turned off. 

No thanks, I have had enough of Rivergate Mall, Hooters and anything else Rivergate.

Copyright 2013 Sheila Moss

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How to Burn Down the House

[Life is, shall we say, “interesting” at my house. In this little scenario, I am the mentioned mom. The narrator is almost anyone else in the house.]

Burning down the house seems to be more of a potential possibility at our place than it is elsewhere.  Here’s how it’s done.

Step 1: Bake a pizza.

You should bake pizza directly on the oven rack without a pan so the crust will be crispy. When it gets hot, cheese will drip on the bottom of the oven and burn.

Alternative method: If the house is still standing, put a pizza in the oven and then fall asleep watching TV while the pizza burns to a cinder.

Step 2: List to mom rant.

“It’s okay Mom, it was an accident. Nothing happened.”

“No nothing happened, but what if I had not smelled it burning? Is it asking too much for people to use a little common sense?”

Step 3: Cook frozen fish fillets.

This is what the large pizza pan is for, Naturally, as soon as the fish is hot, grease will drip on the bottom of the oven and burn.

Step 4: Go outside and do not watch the food cook.

When mom smells a strange smell like plastic melting, she will check the oven and take out the pan of fish fillets. It will not do much good as the smoke is coming from the grease on the bottom of the oven.

Step 5: Open windows.

Watch mom run around like crazy opening doors and windows to get rid of the smoke before the smoke alarm goes off. Our smoke alarm is connected to a home security system and if it goes off, fire trucks come.

Step 6: Listen to mom rant and rave.

Mom will go on and on about how stupid it is to try to cook fried food in a pan with holes in it.

Step 7: Clean the oven

Mom can clean the oven the next day when it cools. The house may smell like a greasy fish restaurant for several days, so try to stay away from home as much as possible.

Step 8: Fry some bacon.

Bacon grease is very flammable at a low temperature. Bacon has been banned for so long that we can’t even remember the last time it was cooked. Wait till mom is out of town and cook bacon every morning.

Step 9: When mom comes home, give her CPR.

Listen to mom’s lecture on cold cuts and salads for people who don’t know how to cook. (The potato chips are on top of the refrigerator and chocolate chip cookies are behind the microwave for emergencies.)

Step 10: Be sure the fire insurance is paid up.

Mom will take care of this. She is quite certain that one day she is going to come home and find a pile of ashes and a chimney where the house used to be.

Step 10: Throw pizza pan in trash.

“Don’t throw away the pizza pan, mom, I need it to cook pizza.”

“No you don’t, all pizza cooking is now banned.”

Step 11: Listen to the lecture on the virtues of being careful.

God knows what will be burned up next. God knows and mom knows. I am not allowed to use the toaster, the stove, the oven, the microwave, the gas grill, the crock pot or the hair dryer.

Step 12: Eat out.

We no longer cook at home because everything is banned, thrown away or locked up. 

“Can we order a carry-out pizza, mom?”

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

[I have now solved the problem. I sleep with a fire extinguisher.]

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I Am Old

I am old. I have fought the good fight for eternal youth, but sooner or later the clock catches up. My wrinkle cream no longer works except to moisturize my drying skin. My cosmetic surgery has begun to slide. Celebrities with too many plastic surgeries have fat lips and plastic eyebrows. That’s not for me. Besides, looking younger than you really are confuses people. They expect more than you can do.

I am old. I never thought I could be content inside my warm house looking out the window at the cold and bitter earth. It will claim me soon enough. For now, I am a cat lady seeking solace with my pets. Who ever thought that animals would become my support group?

I thought I would work until I was 100 years old like the elderly people I read about online. They live to work and believe that work contributes to a long life. Work never became my life to the exclusion of everything else. It is not so much the work itself that grinds you down, but the stress of deadlines, projects, and schedules. You know when it is time to let a younger person have the chair you have desperately held on to for so many years.

I am old. I have Social Security and a pension and must learn to live frugally. I have a closet full of dresses that I never wear.  Sweatshirts and sweaters keep me warm. Somehow I always seem to feel a bit chilled, maybe the slowing down of metabolism. My bones ache with arthritis, the curse of old people. I wake up stiff in the mornings and must have coffee and pills to wake up.

I used to think I would love being able to sleep as long as I wanted so I would not be drowsy in the afternoon. But all the years of rising early create a natural biorhythm that still wakes you up at an early hour. I seldom sleep an entire night anyhow. Bones ache, legs cramp, nature calls.

I am a homebody. I plan projects to fill the days and wonder how it was that I ever had time to be out in the world most of the time. How did it all get done, the house cleaned, the food cooked, the errands run and the million other little domestic chores? Was my house dirty or was it that I just didn’t notice?

I have other things to do now: writing, hobbies, and television. An entire day can be filled on Facebook before I even notice that it is gone. Not that it matters, tomorrow will be another day and anything left over can be done then. I never thought I would actually like watching game shows.

I am old. I do not worry about makeup or silver roots showing. Makeup collects in my crinkles anyhow. If I want to go to Wal-Mart, I go. No one looks at an old person. We are ignored. Everyone there in the middle of the day is a senior. They drive around in electric shopping buggies. I am lucky to be able to walk and push a cart without leaning on it.

I accept my old age, more or less. What else can you do? Actually, a rocking chair is quite soothing, despite the stereotype. I am happy that I can care for my own needs, run a household, and have a functioning brain and a body that still works most of the time.

So, I will excuse myself now and get on with other matters. I have cats to feed, papers to sort, birdhouses to paint, and a Lifetime Channel move to watch. I can no longer wait until I retire and have more time.

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss 

Posted in Health, Humor, Rants | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Two Table Tangle

I won the prize for bad restaurant customers tonight. It was not intentional, honestly. It just sort of happened.

The parking lot was crowded, so Honey dropped me off at the door while he looked for a parking space. He thought I could give our name to the hostess and the wait would not be as long. Good idea, except for one thing, there was no wait. So, as soon as I arrived they sped me to a table for two.

I looked at the menu and decided what I wanted. Eventually the waitress came. She looked at the two menus. “Are you waiting for someone?” She asked. “Yes, he is parking the car.” I explained. “Would you like something to drink while you wait?” So, I ordered a beverage — still no sign of Honey. Where is he parking anyhow, on the moon?

I looked at the menu and waited some more.

Through the window and could see what appeared to be the car. He must be in the restroom, I thought. The waitress kept gazing my way. I knew she must be thinking that I was keeping a table tied up when she could be serving other people and making tips.

Finally, I got out my cell phone and sent a text. “Are you going to eat?” I was beginning to get a little irritated. “Hang on,” was the reply. What I didn’t realize was that I accidentally texted my daughter instead of Honey. Daughter thought I was asking about bringing a “to go” dinner home for her.

I waited and waited and grew more and more irritated.

I would have left except I had that drink sitting there that hadn’t been touched. By the time I got a check and paid it, Honey would probably be ready to eat.

I stewed and thought murderous thoughts. Finally, I received another text, “I can’t find you.”

He can’t find me? “I’m in the second dining room.” I texted. I saw him go walking through and waved, but he didn’t see me. I decided to get up from the table and chase him down. When I finally caught up with him, he was sitting at a different table and had ordered a drink. He thought I was in the restroom.

“Are you going to move, or am I,” I asked. He decided to join me at my table.

The waitress came over, “Are you ready to order?” Yes, we certainly were. I should have left it alone, but I felt compelled to explain to the waitress and whoever else was listened what happened. I could tell that she only wanted to take the order for the crazy couple at table 12 and get back to work.

The food arrived and so did a text from my daughter, telling me what she wanted to eat. In a bit the waitress came back with the check. “I want an order to go.” I said. “No problem,” she replied, and then left. Why did she leave without taking the order?

She is coming back, said Honey, as she sat a paper cup in front of me. I realized she must have misunderstood. “No, I wanted to add another order,” I explained. “Oh, I thought you said you wanted a water to go,” she said. Water? Order? I can see how that could happen. Anyhow, she took the actual order, we finished eating and she brought the food to go. I’m sure she was looking forward to being rid of us.

“Do you want a dessert, or anything?”

“No, thanks,” I replied. “We’ve caused enough trouble for one night.”

“Oh, that is okay,” she lied, “A lot of people are much worse.”

As my daughter said later when I told her about it, “Boy, I’ll bet they can’t wait for you to come back.”

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

Posted in Entertainment, Humor | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

The Last Telephone

Have you have you bought a landline phone lately? It just isn’t done. Phones come in sets — two phones, three phones, four phones, or even five phones. People thought they had to have a phone for every room. Now, they have a cell phone and seldom use a regular telephone at all.

I went to the local Staples to buy a phone, which gave me pause to wonder. Like big box stores, will telephones soon become obsolete? People are no longer shopping in big stores.

A telephone rests in a box on a low shelf where it has gradually been pushed to the back of the shelf and is barely visible at all. There were telephone sets on display but very few to actually purchase and take home. In fact, this phone could be the only one left in the world. It is a nice phone, but no one wants it.

If a customer finds a phone they like in the display, the store will order that model online and have it delivered to the customer. How ridiculous. Most likely people have checked prices and have a pretty good idea of what they want already. If anyone wants to order online, they can do it themselves.

The only reason people go to electronic stores now is to see the actual merchandise. They then pull out their smart phone to see where they can get one cheaper. No one seems to see or want the lonely phone that is on the shelf. In spite of its many features, it isn’t smart enough.

Maybe they don’t realize that phones now can be connected to a cell phone? With new technology, desk phones can connect to cordless headsets as well as to mobile phones. People can’t see the point and don’t want a land phone.  After all, a cell phone is a TELEPHONE, as well as a computer and many other things.

People want to play Angry Birds and send text messages.

The makers of telephones know that home phones are becoming obsolete and are trying to make them more like cell phones. But the phone is still not actually mobile. It is cordless but will only work when it is close to the base that is transmitting the signal.

Even office phones are no longer just phones. They can do tricks. Phone calls come in on a computer and pop up on the screen with the caller ID displayed. If no one answers, it takes the message and emails it to the user. Even so, people often have both a business desk phone and a business cell phone.

But wait! A customer is looking at the display phone on the shelf. The phone has waited so long for a home. It has waited and waited for someone to get tired of an old phone that went dead, can’t be charged, cuts them off, and is not dependable. Of course, the person could buy new batteries, but it is easier to buy a new phone.

“I’m here! I’m here!” thinks the phone. But it cannot say what is in its circuits. It can only say the number of an incoming call and it has to be plugged in for that. The telephone fears it is destined to be obsolete.

Before long humans will be saying, “Remember when people had phones they could only use in the house?” They will laugh like they do now at the mention of its ancestors, phones with long curly tails, antenna, or dials instead of buttons. And even buttons are becoming obsolete. Humans speak the number or name and the smart phone knows who to call.

But someone discovered the phone and picked it up! They are carrying it to the register. It is going to have a home at last. This is an event to be remembered — something to go down in the history of technology.

Someone has purchased the last telephone.

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

Posted in Humor, Shopping, Technology | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

The Wrong Day

It has finally happened – dementia. I knew I was getting old but I didn’t expect to lose my mind so soon.

I had a dental appointment the other day, my 6 months checkup. I had it on my calendar. I always write things down like that so I don’t forget.

I also had received a reminder card from the dentist’s office. I put it on the refrigerator so I would be sure to see it and not forget. They say people tend to forget dental appointments more than any other kind. It is psychological. We forget what we don’t want to remember.

The appointment was on Monday. Trouble was, my daughter had a doctor appointment on Monday and I had promised to lend her my car. How would I get to my dentist appointment?

“Honey, can you take off early Monday and take me to the dentist?” I cooed to my man. “I suppose I could change it… but I won’t be able to get another appointment in the late afternoon.”

“I have something else to do Monday afternoon. Maybe I can drop you off, do my errand, and come back for you.”

“That should work.” I hate all the rearranging and juggling to keep medical appointments. It is okay for them to make you wait an hour after you get there, but you must be on time. And just as sure as you are a few minutes late, they will be on schedule for the first time in 20 years and pass you by.

When I arrived at the dentist, I signed in on time and was ready to go.

“Excuse me,” said the hygienist, “I don’t have you down for today.”

I was dumbfounded. I knew it was today.

“Well, when is my appointment?” I asked.

“In two weeks.”

I knew she was wrong but what could I do?

“Well, okay, I guess I will have to come back.” I called Honey. “Can you come back and get me? It’s the wrong day.” He was at the bank and not happy about hurrying back.

“I’ll be there in a few minutes.”

I have to take medication one hour before an appointment. Not valium or anything, although that’s not a bad idea. It is an antibiotic because I have knee implants and if infection gets in your blood… oh, never mind. You don’t want to know. Four pills of penicillin all swallowed at the same time. Yuck!

“Oh, I forgot you have to be medicated. Well, let me see; maybe I can work you in quickly.”

I called Honey again. “Never mind, they are going to take me.”

“I just love coming here so much I couldn’t wait until it was time.” I kidded with the hygienist.

She took x-rays, did her thing and then the doctor came to check me out. Naturally, he managed to find a cavity.  “You will need to come back and let me take care of that. Maybe you can just come on the appointment you already have.”

Everyone is a humorist.

I made a new appointment and called Honey for the third time.

When I got home, I checked the card on the refrigerator, sure I was right and they were wrong. No, they were right and it is there in writing on my refrigerator and on the old appointment card. I was so certain that I had not bothered to check.

At least when you arrive two weeks early, you can’t be accused of forgetting because you did not want to go.

Next appointment is Tuesday, at 2:30. I hope I don’t forget.

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

Posted in Health, Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

White Noise

How can a color be noisy? Well, believe me it can. We experienced this innovation at the office where I worked several years ago.

Thanks to a new open office plan at our office, we had something new to gripe about besides each other. You see, experts discovered that with an open office plan, you could not only see each other, you could also hear each other.

Experts came up with a way to overcome this little distraction. It was called “white noise.” We were not exactly sure where it was coming from. For all we knew space aliens may have brought it from another planet. It certainly sounded like something from out of this world.

All day long we were subjected to a whistling sound in the background that blured out any other noise. No longer could we hear our neighbor chattering on the phone, clicking the keyboard, or complaining about too much work.

Funny, most of us had never even heard of white noise and suddenly we had it. It came with modernization, like manna from heaven. We spent our time around the water cooler speculating on what the white noise sounded like. “It sounds like an air blower at high speed,” said one person. “I think it is like being on an airplane,” sald another. “It sounds like what you hear in a seashell when you listen for the sound of the ocean,” said someone else. Of course, the bottom line was that it sounded like… well… white noise.

It seems people complain more if the sound is loud, so it started out low and day by day the volume increased until it reached the highest level. The theory was that if the increase in volume is gradual enough, no one will notice. It is similar to the old frog story. If you put a frog in water and gradually increase the temperature, you can bring it to boiling without killing the frog. I don’t think that is true, but I did know that we were boiling in white noise.

When people talked to me, I could see their lips moving, but I ccould not hear what they were saying. “Huh?” It was like working in a ticket office where you are separated from the rest of the world by an invisible pane of glass, or in a gas station in a bad neighborhood with bullet-proof glass to keep the bad guys out.

White noise is not supposed to be harmful in any way. It is supposed to reduce stress and help workers avoid distractions and be more productive. We suspected that it might be a sinister plot to control our brains and were considering getting tin-foil hats to keep the white noise waves from controlling us.

Noise is not considered noise pollution until it reaches a certain level where noise is more than merely annoying and actually harmful to your health, like the noise from airplane engines, jack hammers, fireworks, or your kids playing rock music. The idea is that it should be loud enough to “mask” other sounds without being loud enough to create a noise distraction of its own.

When you search for information on the internet, most of the results are about how to make white noise, not how to deal with it. Some people use it in the nursery to help fussy babies sleep and it actually works. Now I know why I was suddenly so sleepy. We were supposed to be more productive, but instead we were yawning and finding it difficult to stay awake in our glass cocoons with the soothing sound surrounding us.

As I understand it, an open office plan is intended to improve communication. White noise is intended to mask the excessive noise from our improved communication. But, everyone just kicked it up a notch to be heard over the white noise. It seemed self-defeating to me, but obviously I was out of touch with modernization.

As far as I’m concerned, though, the best color of noise is still the old-fashioned sound of silence.

Copyright 2013 Sheila Moss
Updated 2022

Posted in Humor, Technology, Work Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Love It or List It

During the past week or two, I’ve spent a lot of time in front of the tube. It doesn’t require any physical exertion and not much mental exertion either. I’ve reach into the depth of channels with high numbers and off the regular networks and made some interesting discoveries.

One of the shows with multiple episodes was called “Love It or List It.” A real estate agent tries to find a new dream home within a budget and persuade a couple to move while a decorator completely remodels their old home to entice them to stay.

After watching a couple dozen episodes, I began to notice all the things wrong with my home that needed changing in order for me to love it. I am totally out of style in my 30 year old house. Oh, I’ve done a few upgrades; for example, stainless steel appliances only because my old ones died one by one and had to be replaced.

Still, I found out by watching TV that I really need other things that were on the list of every single couple. For instance, did you know that open concept kitchens are now in? Open concept means, the kitchen, eating area and living room are combined. I am so outdated that there is probably no hope. But the more shows I saw, the more I wanted change, so I decided to change a few little things.

Obviously, the wall between the living room and kitchen must go. I made quite a mess with the chainsaw and forgot about not taking out supporting walls, but the living room and kitchen are now open concept, great for entertaining.

Did you know that you must have granite countertops in your kitchen now or, even better, quartz? My butcher block that used to be so stylish is now out. It was hard getting the counter tops off, even with a crowbar, but I managed.

Of course, I really need a work island in the middle of the kitchen. Everyone who is anyone has an island. But where will I put it? I will have to get rid of the table to make room. I know, I will add a sunroom and put the table out there. As soon as the contractor arrives, I will get started.

As long as I am adding granite countertops, I might as well fix up the bathrooms too. Sharing a bathroom is in, but sharing a lavatory is out. Double sinks are the current trend, his and hers. It will look great with a couple of those fancy bowls and a soaker tub. We must have a soaker tub. Did I mention shower jets and a glass enclosure? Those too.

While I’m waiting for the plumber, I think I will do something about the man cave in my living room. That oversized entertainment center is a relic. What is in now is a flat screen over the fireplace. I’ll just put it and the TV on Craigslist and see if I can get rid of them. We will need to get a new TV pretty quickly, though, so I don’t miss any episodes of “Love It or List It.”

That should about take care of the problem except for French doors to my new sunroom. Sliding doors are out, French doors are in. I don’t have a sliding door, but I can knock out a window or two. No problem.

That’s about all I can think of for now. I didn’t get to the attic, and that is unused space that could be utilized to expand the living space, according to the HGTV home designer. Maybe we could raise the ceiling and put in a skylight, very chic look.

In case you are wondering, NO, I did not actually do any of this except in my imagination. I guess I will continue to live in an old-fashioned house with a kitchen wall. At least no one can see the dirty dishes in the sink.

And if I win the lottery, I’m ready.

Copyright 2014 Sheila Moss

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