Thursday, July 28, 2016

Do You Think Farmer H Is Trying To Tell Me Something?

Here is a picture he sent me a couple days ago:

Let the record show that we do NOT have a cow.

What in not-heaven would possess Farmer H to buy a sign cautioning people about a cow? Why would he spend his ill-gotten auction/Goodwill/flea market allowance on such an item?

I can only surmise that Farmer H is thinking that MRS. HILLBILLY MOM is a COW!

When questioned about the purchase, and the self-sent email that told Mrs. HM of this new addition, Farmer H replied, "Well, they didn't have one for a goat." Indeed. A likely story. So he immediately thought, I'll get a cow warning instead. A goat is kind of like a cow. Yeah. Right. No siree, Bob! Just ask blog buddy Sioux. A goat is NOT like a cow! Their eyes are totally different.

I think Farmer H was trying to put something over on me. Like inferring that I am a cow, and that people must be warned about me!

One thing is for certain. After this little incident...I'm about to have a cow!

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Mrs. Hillbilly Mom Can't Win For Losing

I firmly believe that some of The Devil's Handmaidens are moonlighting. Moonlighting at Save A Lot. In an attempt to cast off their wicked ways. Straighten up and fly right. They mean well. But they are having to deal with the consequences of the former path they chose.

When I tried to check out at Save A Lot earlier this week, I was stymied by the ol' Wrong-Lane Gremlin. You know. The knack I have for always choosing the slowest checker. It's even more of an art in Save A Lot. Because they never have more than two checkers working. I should just declare a moratorium on weighing my options, and make it my policy to always go to the opposite lane of the one I would have logically chosen.

Of course I went to the checker with a customer already nearly done. Just a couple of items left on the conveyor. Not the one behind the lady with the full cart.

The Saving Handmaiden gave the total. "That's $17.90."

"Oh. Just a minute." And she turned and grabbed a Snicker's bar from the display. Actually, she grabbed two, and one fell to the floor. But, to her credit, she put the fallen one on the counter, and put the other one back. The new total was not to her liking.

"Oh. Wait."

And the customer grabbed a Reese's Cup double. Which was still under a $20.00 total. So she fished around for a Hershey's.

"That's $19.80."

"All right."

"But I can't use your voucher for that."

"That's okay. I have cash for them."

In the meantime, another whole customer had gone through the other line. I could imagine problems with the voucher. So I moved out of my sweet-tooth line and into the other one. Of course the customer took her sweet time with a debit card that had a chip. After much bleeping and blooping, kind of like a casino jackpot, the machine accepted her plastic.

I only had a few items, you know. Four bags of Lay's Potato Chips. Some corn on the cob. Peanut butter crackers. And a box of fruit roll-ups for The Pony. My new Saving Handmaiden had them scanned quick as a whistle. I was paying cash. Ready to get out of there. I had more stops to make. I pulled the bills out of my shirt pocket.

"Do you know the price on these Little Debbie Muffins? Are they 2 for $3.00 or 2 for $4.00?" And to think I had been worried about the voucher lady. This new one who had taken my place in that line had a problem, too.

I'll be ding-dang-donged if my Saving Handmaiden didn't turn around. And offer to go look! Rather than tell that other Saving Handmaiden that she should go see for herself. Sweet Gummi Mary! If your customer doesn't know the price, and your register is not programmed, then get your own lazy butt down the aisle to look it up yourself! It's not like my Saving Handmaiden was without a customer! HELLOOOOO! I was standing right there, my money ready. But NO! My Saving Handmaiden LEFT ME holding the cash, and walked all the way down to the Little Debbie promotion, and called back, "They're 2 for $3.00."

Sometimes, I think I am destined to stop shopping and raise my own vittles.

Those Little Debbies will be a challenge.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

A Sight That Could Have Traumatized Helen Keller

Are you sitting down? Do you have the smelling salts nearby? The tale today is not for the faint of heart, nor those of weak constitution. A pregnant woman with a heart condition and severe agoraphobia exacerbated by acrophobia would fare better on a dangle-legged roller coaster than an unsuspecting reader clicking onto this post. You have been warned.

I don't know what time you'll be reading. But if you're wiping the lobster butter from your chin, or nom-nomming a bowl of Edy's Grand Slow-Churned Double Fudge Brownie, or sitting down to a Cronut you waited in line four hours for...push away from the table. In fact, a mini-fast is in order, until your gorge will no longer have the urge to rise.

The sight I saw one evening last week has quite possibly scared me out of a year's girth. Hard-telling WHAT future effect it may have on The Pony's tender psyche.

Let the record show that every evening, Farmer H comes home from work, passes through the kitchen of the Mansion, sometimes grunts a greeting/sometimes doesn't, and heads out the front door to feed his animals and tinker with one of his current projects. Not that there's anything wrong with that. He could be telling me he was going to his basement workshop, turn on the table saw, and walk up the street to a neighborhood bar for several hours. Not that he ever exhibited such behavior with his previous wife, of course...

Anyhoo...after a couple hours of doing dude stuff, Farmer H returns to the Mansion to slip into something more comfortable. That being his once-silky SpongeBob once-bright-blue boxers. He tromps down the stairs, through the basement, through the workshop, and out the back door to Poolio. There's no rhyme nor reason to his wardrobe. He has two pair of perfectly good swim trunks that fit him fine. He chooses not to use them unless he's going to a Holiday Inn Express. The Pony and I know his habits. He'll stay out there about an hour, then come inside, tromp back upstairs, and find his supper on the stove.

One evening last week, The Pony drove himself to town to have a sit-down supper at a local Chinese restaurant. Not the one I prefer with the delicious hot & sour soup, but the one next to the old Sonic, where a couple of former Newmentia cronies refuse to eat, having made a deal with a higher power one autumn evening that if they were allowed to live, they would never eat food from that establishment again. Which is how half the faculty ended up with Chinese takeout on parent conference night, and the other half with Mexican cuisine.

I was in no hurry to prepare supper for Farmer H. It wouldn't be eaten until after his workweek routine, so whether it was merely cold or later cold didn't matter much. Farmer H came in while I was cooking, donned his swimwear, and headed down the steps. When the future meal was underway, I went out on the porch to give Puppy Jack and Juno their supper. Farmer H was in Poolio, and hollered up to the porch how the water was perfect. So cool on that 97-degree day. The day he'd spent in the oil pit at work, where there is no air conditioning.

I had to watch my sweet, sweet Juno lest she growl at Jack and take over his food pan lovingly stand too close to Jack while he was eating. I talked to Farmer H over my shoulder. About how Jack really needed that swimming pool Farmer H had promised to make for him out of a cut-off blue plastic barrel. I turned to head back inside when Jack was done and rummaging his tiny nose around the not-eaten dry dogfood in Juno's pan.

Then it happened. I caught a glimpse of Farmer H bobbing around in Poolio. He eschews the normal blow-up see-though cheap rafts from The Dollar Store, and chooses to bend two pool noodles to sit on. The two hollow back ends curve up behind Farmer H's back, and he holds onto the two front ends like they're controls to that stand-up loader thingy that Sigourney Weaver drove on the loading dock in Aliens. Or, if you haven't seen that classic, like he's an elephant holding onto his own tusks.

It was then that I became aware that tusks were not the only thing Farmer H had in common with an elephant.



Except that an elephant would have been embarrassed to have such a trunk, and would have perished, due to being unable to use that stunted appendage to grasp food, suck up water to squirt into its mouth for drinking, or spray its own back to cool off.

Farmer H had taken off his once-silky SpongeBob once-bright-blue boxers, and was bobbing around Poolio au naturel, sporting three noodles, only two of which had come from The Dollar Store.

I averted my gaze and castigated Farmer H for his uncouthiness.

"I can't believe you're swimming like that!"

"I take off my boxers so they don't get wet. Ain't nothin' wrong with that."

Let the record show that this IS the man who bundles up his work uniforms from the floor of the walk-in bathroom closet every Sunday evening, and walks them out to his car (parked under the carport, mind you, not inside the garage) while wearing only his tighty-whities. Let the record further show that the walk from house to car is in full view of the road. And that if a vehicle would happen to drive by, Farmer H would most likely wave to them.

The Pony arrived home shortly after I had returned to my dark basement lair. I had no intention of serving him up a scoop of my unwanted eye candy. Sometimes, one must suffer in silence to protect the innocent. Later, as The Pony reclined on the couch, and I reclined in my recliner, we heard a doggy commotion on the front porch. We heard Farmer H come out of the bedroom, and saw his ankles as he stumped across the living room to flip on the porch light and step outside.

"I hope he's wearing clothes."

"I KNOW! I saw him in the pool when I came back from supper!"

Poor Pony. He slapped the heel of his hand to his forehead, and began rocking gently to sooth himself. Much like he did a few minutes ago when I asked him what night it was that he went to town for Chinese last week. A date which he seems to have forgotten.

Unlike the unforgettable sight from the back porch, around the kitchen nook, where Farmer H floated in Poolio, sporting three noodles, only two of which came from The Dollar Store.

Monday, July 25, 2016

The Devil Is In The Retail

As you saw from the photo of my jacked-up Chinese Tupperware yesterday, the Mansion is stocked with cherries. I don't know if they're in season here in the good ol' U.S. of A., or if The Devil imports them from a far-away paradise where toddlers are paid half a zwieback a week to harvest them. What I DO know is that they're shiny and firm and as big as plums, and I buy a bag every week.

And now, for my tale of outrage...

Sunday, I was not happy to find myself in the slowest checkout line in The Devil's Playground. Of course I could have switched. But I have a knack for picking the slowest one. Without even trying! I chose the line where the lady at the register was forking over her cash. Almost. Because she decided on a card instead. And then she hadn't put her bags in her cart yet. She had a lot of bags. The Devil's Handmaiden was kind of talky, too. I stood there behind the next dude, who only had a ceiling fan and a couple of hardware items for attaching it. I stood there. For four minutes without moving. So...I looked into the lane to the right, even backed up and started over there, because while the customer piling merchandise on the conveyor had a lot of stuff...that Devil's Handmaiden was scanning it like she had been promised ice water by The Devil himself.

Yes, I backed up without beeping, and started to get in line, but an old guy and his woman cut in there forthwith. Let the record show that they, and the next couple who came up behind them, were paid and done before I got my stuff on the conveyor back at my original choice. Finally, my Handmaiden handed the receipt to Fan Dude and moved my stuff up to the scanner. I swear, she talked so much that I figured she was related to both of the previous customers.

I had hardly anything in my cart on Sunday. Everything was in the child seat section. We have a full freezer, and just needed a couple of basics. Some Pepcid, paper plates, paper towels, chicken wings, slaw mix, broccoli slaw mix, sliced red apples, a 2-lb. block of Extra Sharp Cheddar, and a bag of cherries.

The Devil's Not-Handy Maiden asked me how I was. Not as good as I was 20 minutes ago when I got in line. But I did not say that. Only, "Fine." Not wanting to encourage repartee. Not-Handy Maiden babbled on. I noticed that nobody got in line behind me. I guess they had already had the pleasure, and recognized her like a 1920s con man on an FBI Most Wanted poster. I also saw part of the reason for her measure-with-a-calendar checkout times.

The Devil's Not-Handy Maiden double-bagged everything. Every single bag. She took them off the wire holders and set them down in another bag. Seriously. She's costing The Devil an arm and a leg. No ice water for her!

"I put your cherries in that bag. (BAGS!) Except for the loose one. One got out. I didn't figure you wanted it. So I tossed it."

Yeah. I'm sure she did. AFTER she had weighed the bag and charged me by the pound for them. I daresay Not-Handy Maiden cheated me out of about 5 cents!

Or gypped me, as my mom might have said.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Denial Is A Fibber Egregious

Remember back a month ago, when The Pony and Farmer H went to Oklahoma for The Pony's OU registration? When The Pony drove his Rogue? I sent snacks for them in the cooler Farmer H packed with bottled water (but forgot the Diet Mountain Dews that I bought for him at Save A Lot).

Yes. Snacks. I packed some of those little crunchy breadstick/cheese packets. And peanut butter cheese crackers. And a Chinese Tupperware container of green grapes and stemmed cherries that fit perfectly in the cooler.

This is what it looked like when I got it back:

Oh, I don't mind that they ate most of the fruit that I had cram-packed in that container. What I mind is that they damaged my Chinese Tupperware. Look at it! See there? One of those corners is not like the other. It looks like they dropped it.

What I mind most is that neither one of them knows anything about it. Nope. Nobody dropped it. What am I talking about? Corner? What's wrong with it? Oh. That one? Looks like it got chipped. No. I don't know how. Maybe it was like that when you packed it.

Sweet Gummi Mary!

I can't get Chinese Tupperware like that anymore. And the #1 son has kept about five sets of them. Though he, too, denies it. Probably just threw them away!

This is why Mrs. Hillbilly Mom can't have not-even nice things.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

One Beverage, Two Photos

Let the record show that Mrs. Hillbilly Mom did NOT consume TWO of her magical elixirs during The Time of Cutting Back. No. There are two pictures of the same soda.

This picture, taken by The Pony, as was the next one, shows a background of the fake electric fireplace Farmer H rushed out and bought two of after Icepocalypse '06. Uh huh. AFTER the Icepocalypse of '06. When Lowe's had the prices jacked up. Because, you see, you can close off a room and run an electric fireplace off a generator if you cut all your other amps, and still maybe get a computer and a TV to run. Farmer H had me with computer and TV. Not that he asked me before he plopped down the cold, hard debit card for both, of course. Back when shoe inserts from The Good Feet Store were still just a sparkle in his eye.

Also in this top photo, you can see the fake dog Farmer H picked up at some auction or flea market. Saying it was for me. Me. Who has never had a dog like that. It's not like he took poor sweet Sorrow from The Hotel New Hampshire and had him stuffed. It's a resin dog.

This second photo does not distort the cup so much. It also showcases that fireplace, and the bulbous end of one of Farmer H's camouflage Crocs, which sit there waiting for him to slip his (ugh) stubby feet into them, and batten down the heel strap. If you look at the end of the table, you can find a glimpse of a giant roll of bubble wrap that we save to pack items for the #1 son's care packages, or items he needs us to return.

But the idiosyncrasies of Mrs. HM's housekeeping are not the issue here. Her (brief) withdrawal from her magical elixir is the topic.

The week before last, Mrs. HM had a taper-down moment. She was, after all, preparing for a writing conference. No need to be all hopped-up on caffeine for her pitch session. No need to have her kidneys accustomed to a rapid excretion rate. So she cut back. THE HORROR!

Yes, Tuesday of the pre-conference Saturday, Mrs. HM took her last sip of 44 oz Diet Coke. Which is not to say was her final taste of that tasty no-calorie, no-nutrient, artificially-colored water. Nope. She cut back. She didn't go cold turkey. No need to give herself a headache on conference day.

Wednesday, Day One. The first day of the rest of her taper meant a 32 oz cup with two knuckles of ice. Let the record show that her regular imbibtion rate is 44 oz with a few clinks of ice. Maybe six little cubes out of that soda fountain. Just enough to sound like she's getting ice in her drink. So the first day meant about 30 oz instead of 43 oz.

Thursday, Day Two. The second day was a 32 oz cup half full of ice! Half full of ice! So only about 16 oz of Diet Coke that day.

Friday, Day Three. NO FOUNTAIN SODA! But a can of regular Coke. That's only 12 oz. Just enough to prevent a headache.

Saturday, Conference Day. NO COKE OF ANY KIND!!! But I DID have a Diet Pepsi in a can that The Pony found over by the fruit table at the conference. Actually, blog buddy Sioux found it, and tipped off The Pony, and was overheard by Mrs. HM. Sweet Gummi Mary! You didn't think The Pony would find anything anywhere near a fruit table, did you?

Sunday, Day After Conference. Back to the ol' 44 oz Diet Coke! That monkey was welcome to resaddle and ride Mrs. HM to the NASCAR bathroom all afternoon.

I love the kick of 44 oz Diet Coke in the afternoon.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Please Refrain From Inviting Jack To A Sausagefest

Yes! I know what that means!

But I also know that my Puppy Jack should not be invited to a soiree where sausages are being slapped onto plates all willy-nilly. The thing about tiny dogs is that they have tiny mouths. So tiny, in fact, that even those Deliverance hillbillies would have said, "You shore got a tiny mouth!" Not a good thing for Deliverance hillbillies, I would imagine. And not a good thing for Puppy Jack.

Last week, I grabbed a leftover bratwurst from Frig II to give to my sweet, sweet Juno as I went out to feed Puppy Jack his supper. Juno is a grown-tail adult dog, and doesn't need her meals spread out twice a day. But we've always given her a treat when it's time for Jack's supper, so she doesn't harbor resentment.

"What the not-heaven?" I thought. "Might as well give Jacky boy a little taste." So I cut the end off the sausage. Just the tip. (heh, heh)

I gave Juno her lion's share of that bratwurst. Put it in her food pan, as I was getting the scoop for Jack's dry puppy food. I tossed the tip of the sausage (Aha! A new boutique store! Like Top o' the Muffin to You. I could have a boutique sausage store for puppy treats called Just the Tip. What could possibly go wrong there?)

Juno had already swallowed the entire sausage by the time I got Jack's half cup of kibble in the measuring cup. And there was Jacky boy, choking on the tip. He could not get his jaws open wide enough. Had to try and molar the side of that tip. To make it swallowable.

Same thing happened when I tried to treat Jack to the very end of a corn dog. He can't wrap his mouth around such enormous wieners. To him, anyway.

Please refrain from inviting Jack to a sausagefest.