Smoking Charges Ignite
Last night, Amy took Anna, our seven-year-old, to the dress rehearsal for her 2015 dance recital. I was left in charge of Will, our nine-year-old, and Ella, our three-year-old. What follows is a litany of the kids showing me that I exist in their world as a piece of tightly-spun twine, permanently...
Our actions become our kids' reactions. Not exactly new. Not exactly Newtonian (pause while joke sinks in). But it's a truism all the same. ...
Piece of Sh*t Car Reprise
When I was in high-school, a popular song named "Ode to My Car," by Adam Sandler, spun regularly on the radio. No, it didn't. All foul-mouthed teenage boys wished such happy, unfiltered radio days would appear, but that didn't stop the explicit lyrics from making an impact, even if the song's plot...
Yesterday, I was super behind on work projects, so I got up at 2a to get an early start. By 6a, however, I was dragging. I had trouble lifting my feet off the floor to move from room to room …...
Certain messes in life are unavoidable. If you get a DUI and your hair is sufficiently mussed or you manage to jam your finger into the nearest outlet just prior to the mug-shot, chances are you'll be a big-time celebrity some day. ...
A Reasonable Explanation
Therapist: Take me back to the beginning. Tell me how it all got started, how you eventually wound up holding the bloody knife in the aftermath of your killing spree. I'm sure there's a reasonable explanation....
That's a Mouthful
Waking up to the sounds of birds and (outside) insects is alluring, and when you have your second 10th cup of coffee and realize you are on vacation, and this auditory lovemaking is real, not the result of an ambitious-carpet-cleaning hallucination, you can finally relax, letting your bulk stress...
Stupid Piece of ... Oh, That's Right
I'm a realist. I call things like they are, and if I look stupid in the process, well, so be it. ...
The morning started off good. Four eggs fluffed with a splash of milk, mixed with Parmesan and salt and black pepper and red pepper flakes and slathered with Cholula hot sauce; four ounces of Bob Evan's spicy Italian sausage (sorry for the smell, honey, luv ya) fried into the wonderful concoction;...
When Did I Become a Pushover?
I've never thought of myself as the Ultimate Fighter type. As a kid, whenever the possibility of bodily harm came up, I tried to avoid confrontation. But if the issue was pressed, I could stand up and issue fake threats along with the best of them and hope that my manufactured bravado was enough to...
As I Approach 30
I live in a small town. Colona, IL has a population of just over 5,000. As a jogger, this means I am usually only assaulted with exhaust fumes a few times whenever I decide to go outside to burn some calories. But as far as the type of people passing me on the roadside? Over this, I have no control....
She-He Sleep Deprivation
By Seth Kabala
Yesterday, I was super behind on work projects, so I got up at 2a to get an early start. By 6a, however, I was dragging. I had trouble lifting my feet off the floor to move from room to room in the house. Imagine yourself in your backyard, wearing a weight belt. On this weight belt are two metal brackets, one riveted to each side. These brackets will accept a wooden handle from a garden rake, and not just any garden rake; one that is at least 50 years old, has a head of cast iron, and weighs at least 25 pounds. These rakes might be old, but their teeth are as sharp as shark teeth.
Take these relics, click them into the brackets so that the teeth dig into the soft pre-spring ground, and try to walk. … Not working? Yeah, that’s how I felt.
One project on which I was failing to make progress was to choose a CPA review course. Back in college in the dark ages, I had created an account with CPAexcel. Sometime between my having created the account as an undergrad and the invention of fire (and maybe the wheel, too), CPAexcel had merged, been bought out, or had otherwise become affiliated with the giant profligate of educational materials Wiley, and in the process, my account log-in info got screwed up.
Following the failure of my normal 30-second troubleshooting routine (bunch of curses), I sent the following email to Wiley:
I tried to download the free trial CPA review course using my old account (first established about nine years ago), but I got an error message that said my password failed to match your records.
This is odd, because I initially couldn’t remember the password, so prior to attempting the aforementioned initial download, I reset it–today. I then tried to download the free trial. Error message. So I changed my password again. Error message.
I fail to understand how I can be logged into your system (says my name in the upper right corner), but it says it doesn’t recognize the password I used to get into the system in the first place. Something is screwy.
My sleep-deprived self is so nice, I know. That’s okay. Praise is unnecessary.
Rather than go lie down and take a nap, get up, sail to Taiwan and back, and then check my email, I, like an idiot, elected to stare at the screen and wait for a reply so I could reply and get the process started faster.
Shockingly, said fast reply did not happen, and I grew more tired and irritable as time passed. I should have guessed that by the time they got back to me, my disembodied consciousness would have responded from its place on a server in a bunker in the Arizona desert. A prompt reply from customer service? Yeah, right. What crazy idea will I think of next? Drivers discovering that the short bar that goes up and down next to the steering wheel, and engages light filaments into a blinking cycle, is useful for warning other drivers of your intentions, preferably before said intentions are carried out?
Perish the thought.
In the middle of my frustration, Ella, my three-year-old, came downstairs and asked me what was wrong. I gave her the cleanest version I could without getting into trouble with my wife, Amy, and went back to work.
I’d neglected to have my coffee, and my eyelids were crashing hard, so when 10 minutes had gone by without a response from Wiley, I leaned forward, crossed my forearms and placed them on the table, and laid my head down to catch some ZZZs.
Following is a conversation between Amy and Ella, relayed to me later by Amy, that took place after I’d nodded off:
Ella: She’s still having problems.
Ella: She has her head on her arms like this. (Demonstrates arms on table, head on crossed arms.)
Amy: Do you mean Daddy?
Amy: Daddy’s a he, Honey.
Ella: Ok. He’s still having problems. Can you come help?
Amy: What should I do?
Ella: Just come say, “Awww.”
Amy: And that will help?
I have some concern about the gender confusion, but beyond that, my Ella is a sweetie. I’m sure there’s no issue with a lack of masculine projection on my part.
Sure of it.
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Tags: 2a, 6a, Amy, awww, coffee, CPA, CPA review course, CPAexcel, customer service, dark ages, daughter, dragging, Ella, eyelids, fathers and daughters, garden rake, humor writing, humorist, idiot, invention of fire, invention of the wheel, log-in, masculinity, nap, prompt reply, relic, sleep deprivation, Taiwan, TFF Issue #5, trashy tech, turn signal, wife, Wiley, ZZZs
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