Sunday, August 31, 2008

Anam Cara

Today is our sixth anniversary. Some time ago, I wandered into an AOL chat room and became a regular. Fellow chatters were also 'regs'. We all got to know each other and we were a little 'cyber-family'. We knew about each others families, friends, trials and tribulations. There was one chatter in particular that caught my attention. She was funny, caring, smart and so very cute. I partook in this chat room for many months and then, took a small break. When I came back to the room, the same folks were there, including the cutie you see in the picture above. That cutie being Maggie, not me. We spoke for hours online and then on the phone. I got by talking to her that she was a fabuloso individual. We talked and talked, exchanged email and snail mails...After 'knowing' me only a couple of months she sent me a great gift. It was a brutally cold December Rhode Island day ( all December days in Rhode Island are brutally cold) when I went to the mail box. I pulled the bills and folded inside the Warwick Beacon was a manilla envelope addressed to me with a New Jersey postmark. I ran back to the house, not wanting to freeze to the ground, tossed the mail on the dining room table and ripped open the envelope. Inside was a wool scarf. Not just any wool scarf, an IRISH wool scarf. Awesome! Perfect! My Dad, who was sick with cancer at the time, smiled and admired it. "That's a sharp lookin' scarf there kiddo," he said. "Mags sent it." "That was nice! She's somethin' eh?" I think he even referred to her as a 'nice girl'.
That was the beginning of the acts of kindness and thoughtfulness that have been bestowed upon me in the past 6 plus years.
Over the years our life together has been anything but boring. The death of my beloved Dad in 2000, open-heart surgery for Mags in 2004, the same exact procedure on her dad J.W. the following year, Maggie literally saving her mothers life by dragging her forcibly to the E.R. to be diagnosed just in time with E. Coli poisoning, the death of my dear friend Marc in 2005, the struggle to work full time and earn her N.J. State Real Estate licence, a bout with breast cancer for Mags in 2006, the death of my sister in 2007. Her Dad suffering from seizures and a near death experience in upstate have been through it. Mags has been a huge support for me through all of my families tragedies and when the shit hits the fan there is one person who I want in my corner. I'm not sure what I would do without her.
Even though we've been living la vida loca there's nobody I'd rather be riding this Crazy-Train of life with.
So tonight, we'll go have a nice dinner somewhere and come home, maybe catch a movie and when I say goodnight, I'll consider Meself a lucky lad.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Toe is Me

Well on Tuesday night I was in the yard with CrazyDog for our nightly game of catch. I was barefooted, enjoying the beautiful cool evening temps, feeling of the cool grass between my toes, enjoying life for a brief moment when suddenly, walking over to pick up the ball, my foot slipped and went into a small hole ( I imagine it was a divot form last years mole problem) and jammed my foot. My toe is broken. It looks horrible. It is a lovely shade of dark purple with a little red mixed in. I would post a pic but it would surely ruin your appetite for the next three days. The following day I noticed that there was bruising across the top of my foot. I taped the broken toe to it's 'buddy' toe and have been hobbling around for almost a week. Going to the doc is pointless because unless the foot is numb and tingling, there is nothing they can do. So I will suffer. To make matters worse, at work on the next day, I fell through a skid, with my bad foot of course. And then I went to step out of harm's way I fell through another skid, with said foot. Funny enough the only thing hurting at that point was my ego because I did it in front of like 5 people. Thankfully only one laughed. Jason you fucker.
I took the car down to the inspection station on rt.130 and was pleased to see I was the only one there waiting. So I wait ten minutes, I'm waived forward and I hand over my papers and I'm asked for my ticket. "Ticket?", I say. (The inspector was Asian) "Yah, you need ticky. No ticky no sticky" , he said pointing to my almost expired inspection sticker. "You go 'round 'gain and go through gate."
So I go around and sure enough there is the gate. I'm not sure, even now, how I missed this gate. So I start to pull up to the gate and a newer car comes flying up and races into the gate ahead of me. I pull in behind this person, tempted to bump his shiny Beamer with my dusty Camry but temptation flies away. I get my ticket, get in line, and send my car through. There is a small booth where you wait & I spoke with the owner of the Beamer, a very nice elderly man for a few minutes and wished him a good day. The last inspection test is for your gas cap, making sure your not emitting too many fumes into the air ( Like I'm gonna be here to see the destruction of the planet anyways). Well the inspector calls her co-worker over and points into my gas tank. "Crap," I think. The woman yells into the empty building "Toyota! Owner of the Toyota?" I look around. I am the only car owner in the empty 5 bay garage and I'm sitting four feet away from her. She points to my gas cap and says something. I step out of the booth and she points to the gas cap area, "You have bee's nest."
She tells her co-worker, a large African fellow to remove it. "P'ah! You ahhr crazzy woman," and walks away. She shrugs and tells me "You should get rid of that."
So other than a small bee's nest. My car is good for two years. Hopefully.

Monday, August 25, 2008

A Day Off

So here it is, the horrbile day we all call 'Monday'. Well, some of us call it Monday others that I know call it much worse. I have the day off because my car is in the shop. I am in need of major repair and my car must go through inspection this week. Hopefully, it will pass. This repair will be expensive enough. And the Motor Vehicle Inspections are so tough nowadays. I remember back in the late 70's in Rhode Island, anything with brakelights and headlights would pass. An older man I worked with had ripped all the seats out ( he sold the back seat for money for pot, believe it or not.) and had two big holes. one where the passenger seat, ahem, was...and then one behind where the pasenger seat would have been. Talk about getting gassed. No seat belts, no seats, one wiperblade (passenger side)..... Nowadays if your car has fly crap on it, it will fail. My reapir is big and it involves the Catalytic converter. My BIL is repairing it as we speak.
I am home kicking back. I've already folded a load of laundry and vacuumed theliving room. It's a tiny room but we have CrazyDog and the cat sheds like Lindsey Lohan drinks so you can imagine.....
Lately my back has been really killing me. It isn't unusual for it to hurt, it aches all the time, but an asprin or two usually does me good. Lately however, I've been keepign my Vikes in my Pez dispenser and popping almost one a day. Hopefully it's just the barometric pressure or stress and not something major like a tumor the size of a basketball. Well, I guess that's only funny if you know how small of a person I am... well, actuially a tumor of any size isn't funny at all...As a matter o' fact I've just taken one and I'm enjoying a good cup of tea, listening to some good tunes and maybe later I'll see if I can catch some of the highlights from this past weekends action in the EPL.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

The Update....

Well due to nothing more than laziness, it has been two months since my last post.
So I go to our Boston area facility and set up the printer machine thingy. It is, however, not without a snag. I am shown a room where they want the machine set up. It is packed with skids and skids of copy paper. My contact Fred waves his arms at the skids 'right here is where we want it.' I look at all the skids and he points at a pallet jack ( no motor ) that was manufactured sometime during the Nixon administration and tells me if I need help to grab one of the guys form the print room.
Long story short, in a span of four hours I have moved all the skids and reassembled the machine and connected all the wiring. There is a junction box in the ceiling above me and Im told the electrician will be in first thing in the a.m. Fred tells me to go back to the hotel and kick back. Awesome! So I hop in my Passat and cruise back to the hotel. I crack a cold beer and call Pizza Hut for my dinner. The hotel is really nice and Im enjoying myself. I tune into Maggies addiction, Law and Order and watch until the Celts game comes on. I sprawl myself out across the Queen sized bed and fall asleep after midnight.
I have a hot shower in the am and drive over to the shop. I'm told Fred wont be in til later so I wait. Fred comes in and says there is a problem. The electrical box in the ceiling won't handle to juice needed so I must disassemble the machine and move it across the room. I am not happy and it shows on my face. I hate doing things twice. Fred notices and kindly says "Hey you're gettin' paid right?" It isn't Fred's fault and I shrug and smile, "piece of cake". So I move the monstrous old machine across the floor in four sections, re-reassemble it and rewire it and then smile to myself. The electrician comes in and we chat about last night Celtics game and he says "no problemo man." He then leaves and he doesn't come back. I try and find the MIA Fred and when I do he says '"where is Chico?" I shrug and stare at him for more info. "Lemme call him" Turns out nobody told Chico they wanted it hooked up today.
So I meet Jane and give her a very quick lesson in the operation of the computer program and the machine. She jots notes furiously and at 5 o'clock she tells me have a nice weekend and that she's sure she'll be in touch. Which she has...I don't mind though. They're all really nice up there and I know the machine pretty well.
After that I shoot down 295 to Warwick to have a nice dinner with Mims, Cassie and my brother.
I spend the next 40 or so hours with Mims and tehn head home to Joisey.