Sunday, January 12, 2014

Pestering about Puppies

My parents brought home a wiener dog puppy when I was 8 years old.  That was a pretty happy day for the Pope kids.  Right up there with the day we went to see Return of the Jedi or when my parent bought the Thriller album.  We (my parents) have had dogs ever since.  I’ve been a parent now for almost 15 years and we’ve never had a dog.  I’m pretty sure every kid, ever, wants a dog (or at least some sort of animal that isn’t an older brother who hasn’t discovered deodorant yet).  For several years, my girls, Sydney in particular, have been making subtle and not-so-subtle requests for us to “adopt-a-pet.”  This usually looks like this:

Syd: “Dad, can you do the password on the computer?”

Me:  “Why”

Syd: “So I can look for dogs.”

Me:  “But we aren’t getting a dog.”

Syd:  (after looking down and a little bit sad) – “But I just wanna look, they’re so cute!”

Me:  (typing the password) “You can look, but we aren’t getting one.”

Syd:  (several minutes of searching later) “Dad, I found the perfect dog for us and it’s only $100 and it’s hypoallergenic and it’s housetrained and it’s just a few miles away and it needs a home and it would be perfect for us!”

Me:  (slowly limbering to the computer) “Yep, it’s cute, but we’re not getting a dog.”

This is a conversation we’ve had, pretty much verbatim, roughly 300 times over the last three years.  About half the time I pick up my phone there’s an open web page with pictures of adorable dogs that need homes with important statistics like vaccination status and current progress on house training.  (These are two items I hope my daughter factors into her dating research as well.)

The efforts to convince the parental units that we need a dog have ramped up for some reason over the last few weeks.  (this is strangely related to some cat-sitting that my daughter did over the holiday)  Now this is easily the #1 topic at our house and she’s successfully co-opted all of her siblings as demonstrated by this signed document I found on my pillow a few nights ago, which is literally, a declaration:

WP_20140112_001 (1)

You’ll notice that the two signatures that matter aren’t there just yet.  Let’s be real though, it’s only a matter of time.  Our kids have learned that their parents can certainly be beaten into submission through repeated “reminders” of what the kids “need.”

We’ll hold out for a while, no doubt, but I suspect one day one of those internet puppies is going to have an accident in our family room and I’ll be cleaning things up because I eventually, I usually do what I’m told…

Sunday, January 05, 2014

Irrational Underwear, Sweatpants, and Hours Lost Staring at a Bed Covered with Paper

I guess I'll go ahead and acknowledge that I used to write a blog every once in a while.  If you're reading this you may remember those days.  You'd think that after roughly two and a half years of not posting I'd have kinda lost the love of the blog, but it's still there somewhere.  Life's happened, lots of it.  But it seems like the world moved to less than 140 characters and I kinda filled blog time with other stuff.  Over the last couple years a handful of folks (fun mental image) have actually encouraged me to start things up again.  Those people are really awesome.  No promises that this is the start of a huge new run of hourly priceless posts, but it's a new year and I'm finding that I'm needing a creative outlet and a way to connect, at least virtually, with other people.  On that note…

Having too much phlegm in your throat for too long really bites.

I don't think I get sick more often than an average dude my age, but well, I just wrapped up a month of an annoying URI (this is either Upper Respiratory Infection or Underwear Reacting Irrationally)  During this little stretch of Chest Funk (good name for a rock band) I found myself at "Urgent Care" 3 separate times.  To be clear, I tried to go see my real doctor, but they were too busy for my little issue, so they said to go to the walk-in place.  I think they should change the name to something other than Urgent Care.  It sounds way too much like the Emergency Room and makes me feel like there should be actual blood coming out of me or a non-beating heart or something strong to justify strolling in there.  I decided that wearing sweat pants made it look like I was in urgent need of help.  Here are a few more observations from the many long hours I spent there:

  • On my multiple visits I was quickly trained to put on one of those “Bird Flu imageMasks”, which actually made me feel like I was sicker than I probably was.  Also, breathing through those masks with glasses on doesn’t work very well if you want to, you know, see stuff.
  • Apparently the folks there are really keen to know when my birthday is.  Everyone who worked there kept asking me over and over, so I’m pretty sure I’m getting something awesome for my next big day
  • Instead of calling it the “Urgent Care Office” they should call it the “Substantially Understaffed With Trained Doctors Office”
  • Thanks to the Mrs. HTF, I learned the trick that the best way to not spend the entire day there is to arrive really early, like before the office opens, and be the first one to check in.  This also allowed me to turn on turn on the Today Show.  I dig me the Orange Room.
  • Having the nurse call your name kinda feels like a victory, but then they lead me back to the examination room, asked a few probing questions, and left me there to die.  My average time sitting alone on a wooden stool staring at a bed covered with butcher paper was over an hour.  Although it felt more like the time it takes to watch 3 or 4 Harry Potter movies.  As I sat there thinking about being sick, I actually got sicker.  At least I was able to put on a good show when the doc finally materialized.

Yeah, I eventually got better, but I think the time spent being cared for urgently probably made my little sickness last longer.  I’m still thankful that I can go see a doctor when I need to, but my next visit to that place I’m bringing my tablet, my own proper gas mask, and a little name card that tells everyone my birthdate, so they can get me some good stuff.

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