The Dreaded Fitted Sheet

The left sheet was folded by me, and the right sheet was folded by my husband.

I present to you Exhibit A. And, no, there is no exhibit B. On the left, you see the fitted sheet I folded, and on the right, you see the fitted sheet my husband folded. For over 40 years now, I have yet to hone my skill of folding fitted sheets. Clearly, my husband’s skill-set is above mine, as his end result is quite neat. Though I will no doubt come across as sexist, I challenge all the men reading this post to take a moment and try their skill at folding fitted sheets. Married men, please consult with your wife on which sheet is the fitted sheet; and single men, please call your Mom and ask her. I am sure all the Moms in the world would love to receive a call from her son(s), anyway. Oh, and please, if you call your Mom, let her know I suggested you call. I try hard to get on the good side of Moms.

Folding fitted sheets neatly is not something I do well – do good? Argh, is it do well or do good? My use of grammar is not always done – um, I’m not always correct in my usage of grammar. Perhaps my mother will read this post and call me with the proper usage of ‘well’ and ‘good’. But, you will not find me waiting by the phone for my Mum to call, because my Mum, like me, doesn’t like the phone. This is not a post about phones, so I apologize for the digression. For the record, I referenced my Webster’s dictionary and found that I do not fold fitted sheets well, but I do have good hands.

I have already showed you pictures of our closets, so you are well aware of my lack of organizational skills. Though I lean more towards the insecure side, it does not prevent me from exposing my faults. In fact, one might say, okay – many would say, over-sharing is something I do well. Talking is another thing I do well, provided ‘do well’ means ‘often talks’. I listen well, too; even though I may ignore what I’ve been told or overheard. I am not a good silent reader, in part because I am easily distracted by sounds and miscellaneous and impromptu thoughts in my head. I do well when reading aloud to my boys, provided I am not reading Dr. Seuss. Dr. Seuss proves to be quite a challenging read-aloud. Actually, I find reading aloud A. A. Milne challenging, too.

I have a wonderful ability to annoy people. Just one loud outburst of my laughter will scare babies and generate looks of annoyance. In fact, on our way to a birthday party yesterday, my oldest did something I found quite funny, so I generated a loud outburst of laughter. My oldest quickly covered his ears and whined. I said, “Oh, I am sorry; I know that was loud.” My husband quickly returned, “Yes, it was loud, especially in the car.” Still, while my laughter may generate some annoyance, I have the ability to make people laugh, too. I mean, the fact that people laugh at me, counts as having the ability to make people laugh, right? And yes, self-deprecation is another thing I do well. I believe belittling is an important skill to keep one’s ego in check. Not sure why, but as I type, I hear Tigger saying, “And, belittling is what Tiggers do best!”

I am good at Jumbles. Frankly, I’m good at many word games. I love word games, too. I’m not good at number games. Sudoku is not my friend. I believe word problems are evil. I do not enjoy reading about Farmer John, who is driving his tractor 7 miles an hour, while wearing his size 36″ waist purple pants on the 2nd Tuesday of the month. When Farmer John gets to his brother’s house, which is 3 miles from where he went to school 20yrs ago, and the total number of times his 13″ diameter tractor wheels rotated completely during his journey, is of no use to me. I suppose getting a triple word score and a double letter score with a great word in a game of Scrabble is of no true¬† importance to me, either. Still, I’ll always pick a word game over Farmer John and Sudoku.

Aside from sharing the fact that I don’t fold fitted sheets well and my husband does fold fitted sheets well, I’m not sure I know what the purpose is of this post. Staying on target, following one train of thought and generally making sense is not on my list of things I do well; however, the ability to cause people to scratch their head and look confused is something I do quite well.

Joy and laughter

The Forget Me Not Flower

I went to a funeral today, and I had a great time. My siblings had an exciting life, at least from my vantage point. I watched them from afar – always wanting to know what they were doing, who they were with, etc. To a certain extent, my siblings were a mystery to me, much like the teacher’s lounge in school. You knew the teacher’s lounge was the coolest place, but it was forbidden for students to enter, so it remained a mystery.

5yrs younger than my closest sister (I have four sisters and one brother), the gap in age was big enough that I rarely played in their reindeer games. Though the age gap hasn’t changed, growing older seems to bring the gap a bit closer together. So now, I can laugh with them as they reflect on the fun they had. I can pretend I was with them, without all the side effects.

So, the funeral was for a great man. He was well known in our neighborhood, in part, because he was a broadcast journalist. Though, I am certain, this man would have been well known in our neighborhood even if it didn’t work in front of the camera. In some regards, he reminded me of my Dad. He was tall, well built and formidable. Though, underneath his intimidating exterior, he was kind and loving. (And today I learned, he was an excellent pool player.)

This man reminded me of my Dad. He also reminded me of our other neighbor. And now, these three men, all larger than life, have died. It is the end of an era. No, we didn’t see the families often as the years passed. And, aside from one family, no one lives in the neighborhood anymore. Still, in less than five minutes of chatting, it was as if no time had passed.

The kids of these great men laughed about the days long passed. And, though I didn’t participate in many of the memories they shared, I was able to laugh with them. I finally moved up from the kid table to the adult table. And, they weren’t whispering or trying to hide things from me. It was fun. Did I mention the laughter? So much laughter.

When I die, I hope there is a fun filled memorial service that includes tons of loud laughter. If any of my siblings are still alive, the loud part is a certainty. No one in my family is quiet. I hate that we miss our memorial services. I would enjoy being surrounded by people who love me and hearing their fun and happy memories. (Hopefully, they would keep their gripes about me on the down low.)

Going back to the man we remembered today, he was a star to me. As a kid, I wanted to be a broadcast journalist. Actually, I wanted to be a broadcast meteorologist. Virgina Gunn was a local weather broadcaster, and I wanted to be Virginia Gunn. (I wanted to be Joan Embery, too. She worked at the San Diego Zoo. But, I digress…) I was star struck. Just across the street from my house lived what I believed to be a celebrity. I once watched him do a news story in front of his house. I loved it.

I also loved New Year’s Eve. My family was invited to this man’s house several times for their New Year’s Eve parties. I don’t know how many parties my parents attended, but I remember attending some as a kid. And, I remember the parents gathering in the kitchen and singing for hours. Literally hours. I loved listening to them singing. So many fantastic voices singing great oldies. In fact, during the memorial service today, I swear the lady singing the hymns behind me was someone who attended the New Year’s Eve parties of the past. Did I mention I loved their New Year’s Eve parties?

When a loved one dies, it sucks. Pardon my language, but I believe the term ‘suck’ is an appropriate term. The opportunity to gather with friends and family and recall fun times with the lost loved one makes the bitter pill easier to swallow. And, I find talking about the death of the loved helps ease the pain, too. Though I like to talk about the sadness, I have observed that some people prefer not to talk about it. Whether or not you like to talk about the death of a loved one, I hope you are able to laugh. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want you to laugh that a person died. Silly. That would be rude. I do hope that you are able to remember some fun times that bring you to laughter.