Sunday, October 27, 2013

Various, Random, and Sundry: My Middle Names!

I suppose I enjoy discussing what's happening in my life and work.  When things happen, and they do happen, I certainly enjoy ranting about it.
Guess what I'm talking about?
For example, last night we went to Walmart to pick up some photos.  Why, you might ask?  Because my daughter needed a photo of herself with her chosen victim, er, interviewee, for a veteran's day project.  Since I didn't have a lot of time to get the photo.  I downloaded it to Walmart and had them do it in an hour for no extra charge.  They send me a helpful text saying it was ready.  There.  The scene is all set.
Maybe I need to go to Walmart more?  Naw.
Then.  Then, the great word that precedes all that is odd and inexplicable in life.  Then when we showed up at Walmart, there was no one at the photo lab in the back of the store.  By the way, getting to the photo lab involved asking the greeter at the front of the store who gave directions, thusly.  "Ya'll go straight on back.  When you get to the big aisle ya'll want to go right.  That's the big right, right?  Then, about fifty feet or so, there'll be the photo place.  If you've gone to the shoes, you've gone too far.  Ya'll understand?"  Great.  But NO ONE was there.  And as HIM, the man to whom I'm married, will tell you, this is a recipe for Fat Woman's sense of injustice.  Furthermore, there was a sign.  A sign that said, "Saturday 9 am - 8 pm."  I checked my phone.  Yes, it was 7 pm.  This was the point where I said several statements which were overheard by both my daughter and the woman with her grown daughter who were using the computer terminals at the photo lab to design someone's wedding invitations.  These statements included foul language and a beseechment of why in the name of Kodak had I ever thought this way of going would be easier.  (Wedding invitations at Walmart?  Really?  Seriously?  OMG.)

Just a small town boy walking his pet alligator...
HIM got on his cell phone and called Walmart, because HIM loves to do stuff like that.  The person he talked to said the photo lab was closed.  I gestured at the sign frantically, er, angrily, and HIM hung up before I could grab it from him.
I had to think about this for a moment.
(This is why I don't shop at Walmart anymore.  That an incident back in the 90s which involved one of the senior citizen greeter/things chasing us out into the parking lot yelling, "YOU KNOW YOU'RE NOT SUPPOSED TO DO THAT!"  True story.  I swear.)
This is like one of those pictures that you stare at
and stare at and THEN it becomes clear.
HIM related the information to me.  I said, "Where's the manager?" and stomped into the front of the store.  HIM wisely took our daughter to where the game section was located.  (She had her change purse and was prepared to waste quarters in a wild and woolly manner.)  There at customer service, I had to wait for the single employee to park a shopping cart full of returns in a way that made her personally happy.  She saw me but she did not really care.  Finally I asked her about the STUPID photo lab hours and she said, "We're horribly understaffed.  You have to go back and talk to the electronics clerk.  She'll help you."
I'm not sure what this is, but I would
have taken a picture of it, too.
I think stared for a while, trying to prevent my eyes from rolling back in my head.  (Through years of practice I can finally do it, but it's still hard.)
I used this before but I couldn't help myself.
I tromped back across the entire store (it's a SUPER Walmart so I'm entitled to bitch) to the electronics section where the sole employee picked up a ringing phone just as I trudged to the counter.  Her conversation went like this, keeping in mind that I only heard one side: "Yeah, I didn't know that.  Hmm.  Well, I don't know about that.  Hmm.  I haven't heard that."  Five long minutes later I realized that she was trying to figure out how to transfer the person but couldn't.  Finally, she finally accidentally hung up on the person and turned to me.  Then someone else came up and said that she was needed in the returns area.  It turns out that this solitary individual was manning three sections at the same time.  (My annoyance quickly changed to pity.)  She got me the pictures and handed them over to me and then had to deal with the mother/daughter/wedding invitation fiasco.  ("Is this really ecru or is it off white?  Because if it's off white, I may vomit.")  (Wedding invitations at Walmart?  Really?  Seriously?)
I totally need Xanax for most of my shopping experiences.
To sum.  I got the one stupid picture I needed for my daughter's social studies assignment and I hate Walmart more than ever.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Random Stuff OR Not Really Random BECAUSE I Got Caught in a Train of Thought (Train of Rant)

Warning: May diffuse on random courses of thought.  Could be irritating, irrational, and possibly amusing.

On ebooks.  I was in Target recently.  (I like Target.  They gave me a card that means I get 5% off every time I shop there, so I tend to shop there.  Plus they have the tea I like.  Did I mention I'm kind of a tea junkie?  Did I say this would be random?)  I got into a conversation with a woman who liked my t-shirt.  Here's the t-shirt because it kind of sparked everything that followed.
There.  I run around Targets wearing strange Poe-related joke t-shirts.  Well, the woman got the t-shirt and eventually the conversation turned to books because Poe = author = book reading.  And the woman said, to my horror, "I only read real books."  (I hadn't said anything about being a writer at that time.  She just let me have it out of the blue.)  Let me say that she did emphasize the word real and she said the whole sentence in a sarcastic way just to let me know what her innermost feelings of abhorrence are about not-real books.  Because we all know that ebooks are not REAL books.  (And somehow I managed not to kick her in the shin and throw her purse two aisles over.  Hey, I would have been kicked out of Target and it would have made me sad.  Plus jail time, yuck.  The handcuffing would have been a real hoot, however.)

Real book =
This is ironic since War and Peace is available on Kindle for $.99.  I could probably find it for free if I wanted.  Has anyone ever really read War and Peace?  I mean, I think I started it about twenty times and couldn't wade through it.  It's supposed to be a classic.  (Truly literary people are hissing at me now.  I can hear it.)  (Didn't I say something about randomness?  I can't help myself.)

But alas since I can't appreciate it I must not be a real reader either.  Ebook writer = non-real reader = spawn of the hell beast.  (I might be over telling it, but that's my prerogative.)

No, I write electronic books.  (Mostly.)  See:
Maybe I should have used a Nook or a Kindle, but hey I have a Xoom, so I have all the apps.  However, when I said something to the woman I think she was envisioning this...
I did the flames on my autosketch pad and it looked funny, not like flames so I added the pitchfork for effect.  Wait, I'm not done.  Just for more effect and for the whole reality of how I felt when I discovered that I wasn't a REAL writer.
Maybe she was envisioning more of this.  I do not know for certain.  All I can do is imagine and take a lot of license, because it's my blog.
However, I remained calm in the face of the glaring Luddite.  Barely.
In fact, I gave her one of my cards and told her how she could read the books on her PC or on her smart phone.  (Irony is having a smart phone but not an ereader.)  She said she would read something but I suspect I wasted a perfectly good business card on her.

Wait.  This is how I really felt when she said ebooks weren't real.  (You have to have seen the movie to appreciate it.  Now go and Netflix The Invasion of the Body Snatchers.  The one with Donald Sutherland, although the first one is good, too.)
And since I'm not done making fun of the woman at Target, here's this...

See something always interesting happens to me when I go shopping.

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