I was tired. It had been a long week that involved leaving home at 5:00 each morning to drive 65 miles from our rural home to my client’s training facility where I was being paid to shove the all new and all powerful Microsoft Office Suite into the brains of people who didn’t want to learn this particular new thing. The company was migrating from WordPerfect and Lotus. The employees, however, did not understand why it was necessary to fix what wasn’t broke. They knew and were proficient in WP and Lotus, and had no desire to change. This final day of beating my head against the brick walls that doubled as their brains had started off worse than usual.
I mentioned the rural home thing. Well, this rural home had a rural driveway consisting of crushed shale and limestone that shifted under foot. I had ruined so many pairs of high heels trying to get from the car to the house and vise-a-versa that I’d given up and started wearing my fuzzy slippers to and from. This morning I’d gotten a late start and didn’t notice until I saw my reflection in the mirrored entry doors on my client’s building that -- you guessed it – I was still wearing said fuzzy slippers!
I went back to the car and discovered that I’D FORGOTTEN MY SHOES ENTIRELY! Thank God there was a brand new, 24-hour Wal-Mart store about a mile away. I sped over, ran in, grabbed the first pair of cheap black, passably professional shoes I could find and dashed back to the facility just in time to greet the first students at the door. THOSE WERE ABSOLUTELY THE MOST UNCOMFORTABLE SHOES I’VE EVER BEEN FORCED TO WEAR IN MY LIFE! Around 3:00 p.m. I gave up and told the ladies that I really didn’t care if it was unprofessional or not, I was going barefoot. However, I’d waited too long and already had blisters the size of the polar ice caps sprouting all over my feet.
So there I was, in pain literally from top to bottom. Because of having to endure the daily 130 mile round trip drives, plus the stress of pushing and prodding the unyielding masses, plus the facility’s rigid break scheduling rules that prohibited untimely recesses, in addition to the blisters, I was also nursing a mammoth migraine and a Colorado River sized log-jam of constipation. (I know – that’s a visual you could have done without, right!) The only saving grace of the whole week was the eager anticipation of having dinner that night with one of my best friends – none other than my very own wonderful Bug.
He got to Carrabba’s early and had a table waiting. I’d stopped at the drugstore for some stuff, as my granny would have said, to fix all what ailed me, so I was about 20 minutes behind him. He knew something was wrong when he saw me weave toward him and then just sort of slither down into the booth, but I assured him that I’d be fine if I could just get something to drink and down some pain pills to dull the headache. I dug around in the bag and pulled out a box from which I extracted the much needed analgesic. When I glanced up at Bug, he had the strangest look on his face. I didn’t care, though. I was too focused on getting the wrapper off to give a rip what he was thinking at that moment. I just kept wrangling with the blasted thing thinking when did they start putting foil wrappers on Tylenol and why were the capsules so large?? I looked Bug again and could tell he was obviously dying to tell me something, but I had more pressing business at hand, so he’d just have to wait a minute. I finally got one unwrapped and only when I felt the greasy, slick, bullet in my hand did I realize it was a suppository!!! I’d almost downed a cotton pickin’ suppository!!
GOD HELP BUG! I thought he was going to fall off his chair laughing. And apparently I wasn’t the only one who was worried about him falling over, because the ladies at the table next to us were openly gawking at his antics. So he felt the overwhelming need to explain to them why he was laughing so hard. Then I had to worry that THEY were going to fall out of THEIR chairs laughing! Before it was over with they’d told everybody within a 4 table radius plus the waiter who proceeded to have to go tell the manager who knew me because we ate there so often! After regaining his composure, the waiter decided that it’d be a good idea to rush our order a little so I could get home to bed. That, alone, got him a huge tip that night!
I think I remember reading somewhere that is very unhealthy to consume rich, heavy, Italian food without including dessert. (Something about balanced nutrition???) So any time Bug and I go out to dinner we share some sinfully rich and decadent delight to complete our meal. And with the week I’d just had there was NO WAY I was leaving there without my sweet treat. We quickly decided on cheesecake. With both strawberry and chocolate sauce on the side. We’d almost finished the whole thing when Bug sweetly offered me the last bite. I thanked him kindly as I reached my fork over to get it. But I was so tired that I actually missed the food and drew back an empty fork.
Bug looked very concerned and asked, “Mom, are you sure you’ll be OK to drive home?”
“I’m sure,” I lied and motioned to the waiter to come refill my coffee thinking that if I could just get enough caffeine in on top of the Tylenol I’d be quite OK. Then I once again reached for the piece of cheesecake taunting me from the plate – AND MISSED AGAIN! I thought, DANG! Maybe I shouldn’t try to drive that last 30 miles home.
I shook my head to clear my vision, and when I missed a third time I actually picked up the fork and looked at the end of it to make sure that it wasn’t bent or something. I was beginning to feel like I’d stepped into the Twilight Zone! Thank goodness Bug had kept up an endless stream of chatter during the whole ordeal, so I was pretty sure that he had been engrossed enough in conversation that he hadn’t noticed my last two failed attempts.
Being one to never refuse a challenge, I was determined that I was going to have that last blasted bite of cheesecake if it took all night long! As I made the fourth stab at it I caught just the tiniest glimpse of a hand as Bug rotated the plate ever so slightly just before my fork made contact. And even then, it didn’t really register why I couldn’t get that dang cheesecake onto my fork! As I sat there looking puzzled, suddenly he could no longer contain himself and burst out laughing again so that our whole half of the room was craning their necks to see what the ruckus was. Only THEN did it finally dawn on me that he’d gotten me but good.
Now, every time he wants to remind me that he can get me whenever he wants to, he simply acts like he's turning a plate and grins like a cocky billy goat.
And the moral of the story? No matter how cute he is, never ever share your cheesecake with a Bug!!
Peace, Blessings, and un-wrapped analgesics all 'round!