Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Picture this: Sicily. 1965:

Only replace "Sicily" with "UMass" and replace "1965" with "2014".

Yesterday I was sitting outside talking on the phone at the nearby picnic tables to my work. while there, bees and other insects were nearby, but weren't bothering me so I was fine. after a bit I hung up the phone because I had to use the bathroom. 

Generally speaking when I use the bathroom at work, I use the handicap stall because it's spacious- where the non-handicap stalls are so tiny it's a balancing act just to shut the door and not fall in the toilet. They are so small that that if the handicap stall is occupied, I will go to a different floor to use the bathroom.

Anyway, so there I am using the toilet when I feel something on my neck, I touch it and immediately realize it's a bee, and begin to swat it away frantically. ACK! it's under the collar of my shirt! SHIT! it kind of feels like it's in my hair! I rip off my shirt and throw it on the floor and attempt to shake out my hair. The bee isn't on me anymore, but it did sting me on the neck. Well shit. I sit there for a minute looking around, "I don't see the bee.. not on the floor anywhere... That's when I notice it sitting in the crotch of my underwear.

I bolt up, and strip off my clothes and the damn thing stings me again! This time in my thigh. I stand there shaking with the adrenaline rush and breathing weird. Mother F'er. It hurts and am grateful I am not my mother in this situation, for she is allergic to bees.... Can you imagine the headline of that story? "Lady gets stung by bees while peeing on the toilet, found mostly naked and probably nearly dead" (sorry mom).

After a few seconds, I see the bee crawling out of my shorts strewn in a heap on the floor, and curse under my breath as I realize my sandals which also came off in the rapid strip of my clothes, were under my shorts. It's now or never, and I reach down grab a sandal and whack the bee, hard, about 3 times. 

I manage to finish what I was doing prior to the bee, and get dressed shakily as the adrenaline started to wear off. A few beats later, I am laughing at myself, because I start to think about "what if someone walked in while my clothes were flying off", and just had a visual of the whole scenario  in my head, and it was hilarious. So upon arrival back to my Lab, I tell my colleagues, and then my friend whom I had just been on the phone with, and then mention it on twitter with a friend. I am laughing at myself. 

Just remember that when you're having a crappy day YOU can say, "Welp, at least I don't' have a bee in my underwear." and mean it. *sigh*

Which made me think, why is it that all my funny stories involve the bathroom. At work.?

There was another time I went in to use the bathroom, and the older Korean woman from across the hall was in the tiny stall (I can tell by the shoes... trust me), so I happily went into the one I like to call "my office". This stall is larger than BOTH my bathrooms at home, not combined, but still LARGER THAN BOTH MY BATHROOMS AT MY HOUSE. It's a luxury to use really, and I get a small mount of satisfaction when I can see I'm the first to use the toilet that day. I know this because the seat is up when I walk in.

Anyway, so Dr. Dolan is in her stall, and she exits, and then MAKES A PHONE CALL and doesn't leave. Cripes. So there I am all done with my business, fully clothed standing there politely waiting to flush so that way the sounds of toilet flushing won't be heard by the person on the other end. I have no idea if this is a personal or business call (because she is speaking in Korean) but after a good while of fidgeting and standing there, I finally just flush and walk out to use the lone sink to wash my hands, and she's leaning on it. She looks and moves, but doesn't leave the bathroom. I leave her in there as I exit.

While I am in the potty talk mode, why the hell do they only put one sink, for 2-3 stalls in public restrooms here? So many times there are more than 1 person needing to use the sink at the same time. Some times, someone just needs the mirror, but it's always awkward.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Found this in my drafts folder from 2010: we went to beach, and I don't mean the river or a lake!

So yesterday morning, we're sitting in the living room reading, when out of the blue the husband says, "Let's go to the beach",
me: "well I was planning on heading over to the river later",
him: "no, I mean the ocean".... what?!
me: "but it's so far away"
him: "where's you're sense of adventure?"
I point at the kids.. "gone"

so about 5 minutes go by, and I say "Let's go tot he beach!" so we decide to head to hampton beach in NH. we call around to people to see if anyone wants to go. perfect. Trevor is coming with!

The weather was absolutely perfect! and the kids we amazingly good in the car. Evan had a blast, and even the baby seemed to enjoy himself! of course Jay doesn't really take pictures, so I grabbed a couple, which I'll download and add when I get to the other computer. we left at like noon and didn't make it home until 10-something. but we took the long way home on 101 in NH, and had dinner in Keene. it was about 2.5 hours there. arrived at 2:30 ish. We
spent atleast 2 hours at the beach, and then headed back. Man I sure miss living close to the beach, especially one is warmer, and you don't have to get out b/c your numb (atleast at this point in the summer).

maybe today we'll head over the the river for swimming or something. who knows.

speaking of the river, I took evan swimming there on friday after work. Jay was exhausted, and the baby was sleeping, so it was just me and the Evster. While we were having a good time in the water, and little boy, about 2 years old, goes up to our stuff at the beach and started playing with evan's toys. I look around, no parents in sight? wtf? it wasn't a big deal that he came over to play, but where were his parents. Then the lifeguard goes over and tries to tell him that they belong to us, but he still wanted to play. So i asked Evan if he wanted to go play in the sand with that little boy and he said okay.

I ask the lifeguard where his parents are, she shruged and said, "He doesn't speak English". um, ok. So here is when I bust out my Spanish, "Adonde estan tu Mama o Papa?" his response, "el carro" and points to the car at the end of the row about 50 feet away. I said to the lifeguard that he says his parents are in the car, and she said she hadn't seem them in over an hour. I look over and sure enough there were some people in the car, but who really knew if they were his parents or not. So we play for a while in the sand, and I keep looking over at the car, they're not even watching, and I see them playing with the baby. I"m getting annoyed at point. but then his older siblings came over to play too. The little boy's name is Michael. They were supposed to be watching him. ahh. Even so, if they were supposed to be watching him, then watch him, don't be down the other side of the beach. and the oldest was about 11 or so. It made me angry. You just don't leave a 2 year old to himself at the beach. But I felt like it wasn't my place to go over and bitch at the parents because the lifeguard didn't say anything to them... And my spanish was not even close to good enough to start up a conversation about how they shouldn't leave their 2-year-old near the water. Especially without a life jacket on the kid. Especially after knowing someone who just lost his son b/c he drowned at a public facility during a lifeguard change.

The poor kids diaper had fallen off too. and he was trying to hold it on, when I had come out of the water the first time. It was full of water, poor kid.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Forgot to Mention

I forgot to mention a couple months ago I figured out how to add in my old posts from my previous blogs, so you can now go into my archives way back to 2004 when i started blogging. Thought you'd like to know. No need to keep the link to my old blog anymore. I maybe have even deleted it. I don't' remember

Speech Patterns

Where I currently live in my state is fairly different than where I grew up. Ocean vs. no ocean, tourists vs. no tourists, cranberry bogs vs. traditional farms, mountains vs sandy shores and speech vs speech.

I like to think that I'm pretty good at distinguishing the different dialects of Massachusetts, and other dialects of the English language in general. I can almost always hear differences even if I don't have a specific region to pin it to. In an area as small as Massachusetts is, we have quite a few dialects which are described quite well here.

I grew up in where I affectionately refer to as, "the armpit of the cape", mainland side.
First a bit of learning: Most commonly people only associate The Cape (anyone local to, I'd say New England, refers to Cape Cod, as 'The Cape'. As in, "We're going to the Cape this weekend". Yes we have other capes, such as Cape Ann, but Cape Cod is the largest, and most common of them as a vacation destination) as being the part of the state solely east of the canal. While, yes, that is the main part of The Cape, geographically speaking, there is "mainland" areas are also included as a part of it's region including the towns of Bourne, Sagamore, and parts of Wareham. When they put in the Canal over 100 years ago, it created a visual border on maps which is why if I say I'm from The Cape, people tend to disagree with them once I tell them the part of the town from which I grew up. It's a battle I have resigned to by simple saying, "I grew up down by the Cape".
found here:

For more than 15 years I have lived, "out west" to a part of the state often not even on the radar of many of the people who live inside the I-495 belt that goes north/south outside of the Boston suburbs. Pictured is a funny, yet scarily accurate depiction of my area. HA! Other funny maps, poke of of the western area as but referencing that dragons live here or just fill it with several large ????? because as weird as it sounds, having had grown up in SE Mass, I had NO IDEA what lie west of 495. Swear to God. I knew the shape of the state of course, and knew that the Appalachians went through here, but had no idea about the Connecticut River, the large amounts of farm country, and streets wide enough for 2 cars to drive down at the same time.. oh my gosh! A wide Main Street, big enough for cars to park on, AND drive at a pace faster than a crawl in a land where side streets are much wider than driveways!

I first discovered this area in high school when I came out for UMass Band Day. Which made such an impression on me that I just had to attend UMass Amherst so I could be in the band. Then I got here and was too scared to join the band, crazy schedule and commitments were required especially so in the drumline, as I discovered my second semester freshman year into sophomore year. Pictured is the only football game I played in. AND this is the only picture of me the entire game because my Hubs (bf at the time) was taking pictures and the battery died right after this. Figures. The Drumline is a very stressful group to be a part of, and I think more so than the Band itself.

So anyway, this has turned into a long story about how my dialect has changed. If you want to know where yours falls go HERE, which is an abbreviated version of the original survey found HERE. It's too bad that you can't take the full survey anymore, as I did when it came out. It was pretty fun, and pinpointed my accent well. I leave you on my most favorite question in the link as it will always be a bubbler (bubblah) in my book. You can click through the questions and use the map to see where you fall. It's pretty neat!

Over the years I have most definitely lost my SE Mass accent. I do find it slipping out every so often, and when I catch it I gasp slightly, cover my mouth and then apologize about it. I have no idea why, and the people around me are all, "I didn't hear it". But then again my husband doesn't hear the difference between the names Erin and Aaron, so I can't rely on him. It's especially evident when conversing with my family and friends who still live out east.

This whole blog post was written because last night I found myself having an extremely hard time saying the name 'Arthur' in my son's story. He had to overcome some speech issues, so I like to try and say things are properly as possible yet is comfortable for me to say. We say our r's out here. They don't out east, and last night I kept saying "Ahthah" and not "Arthur" and I was getting frustrated with myself, and had to stop. That name should just not be allowed here.