Saturday was my birthday. No, I will not disclose my age. Let's
just say I did not have candles on my cake, because that would
mean the smoke alarms would go off. That would also mean that
I HAD a cake, which nobody bothered to get me. So I bought
myself one at Country Mart. I left it in the car to stay cold. Then
my Hillbilly Husband must have felt guilty because he went to
Wal-mart around 7:00 p.m. and bought me a cheesecake
assortment. I guess it's the thought that counts. And I know
how much he was thinking, "I really love that cheesecake
assortment." I only like the chocolate chip kind, which leaves
the plain, strawberry, and caramel-apple for him. He seems to
be smarter than I give him credit for sometimes.
HH gave me a beautiful flower arrangement from himself and
the boys. We went to have dinner at Catfish Kettle, a fine dining
establishment. OK, so to US it is, anyway. We took my grandma
with us, because she doesn't get out much. This restaurant is the
place where a waitress whacked #1 son across the shoulder
with a wooden high chair last year. No, he wasn't misbehaving.
He was eating shrimp like a good young 'un when she tried to
move that chair to the table next to us. Poor kid. It really hurt
him. He can't take pain. He was not so traumatized that he
couldn't go back and eat more shrimp. #2 will only eat the fries,
and we talked him into one hush puppy. He had a good cry
when the order was taken, because HH told the waitress to
bring his soda in a cup with a lid, and he was counting on
drinking from a jar like everyone else. HH had to ask her to
bring a jar to get the tears to stop.
The waitress was not very efficient or cheerful. She was about
like I would have been if I was Methusela's great-great-grandma
and had to work a Saturday night dinner rush in an all-you-can-
eat house of fried food. It took her 10 minutes to bring the drinks.
Other people with different waitresses already had their slaw and
baked beans and platters of catfish, shrimp, and chicken. We
waited another 10 minutes. She brought a little plate with some
pickles (dill spears and bread-and-butter-slices) and some lemon
wedges and onion slices and two (count 'em, TWO little plastic
thingies of tartar sauce for FIVE people). By now, #1 needed
more soda. 5 minutes, and she brought a basket of fries, and a
bowl of slaw. Another 10 minutes, and she brought the food.
When were were almost done, she brought the bowl of baked
beans. I didn't mind, because I don't like them, but HH does.
We were not happy campers. I swear, this woman only had
4 tables to take care of.
To add insult to our injury of not getting our heaping platter of
fried goodness as fast as we would have liked, she billed us for
FOUR adults and two kids. What was she saying? That one of
us had to pay double for eating all that two people could eat?
HH called her on it, and she apologized for it (her tiny brain
calculating the remains of her tip after such SUCKY service,
AND overcharging, no doubt). She said it was not intentional.
OK, so I guess she was just stupid. I don't think she did it
deliberately. HH still left her a $7 tip, which she'd better thank
her lucky stars for, because hillbillies in these parts ain't exactly
known for their generosity to the service industry. After she had
just tried to bill us an extra $11, too. But she must need the
money, to be working there at her age. Now watch, I'll see
her in the local paper next week as the woman who just died
and left a million dollars to her 20 cats.
I would like to thank my teaching buddy Mabel for the only
real present I got. WooHoo!!! Lottery tickets! And I informed
her that her initial investment returned 160 %. Because she's a
math teacher, you know, and would understand what that meant.
My Hillbilly Mama gave me money, my Hillbilly Grandma gave
me a card, and HH and the boys gave me the flowers. But my
real present is a trip to Ameristar Casino. We were planning to
go today, but since the weather was so cold, I figured we could
wait a couple weeks. Oh, and we take the kids along. No, we
don't disguise them in wheelchairs with oxygen tanks. HH keeps
them in the game room and gives me an hour to gamble. I'm
lobbying for 90 minutes this year. Then we go to that restaurant/
bar thingy with the big TV screens and the chicken tenders and
the giant pretzels with cheesy beer sauce and horseradish mustard.
Yes. I am pulling out all the stops for my belated celebration. It's
the only time I get out.
#2 son's birthday is Wednesday, and in
lieu of a party this year, we are taking HMama and HGrandma
and going to Chuck E. Cheese. That way, #2 can have more
money to spend on himself. He's had a party for the last 3 years,
and only 4-5 kids show up. We've had them at McDonalds,
at The Party Place (a local thing with games and a jumping
thingy and ride-on thingies) and at CiCi's Pizza. Even the
couple of parties he went to that other kids in his class have
had only had a few kids. So forget that, wasting all that time,
let the kid have a good long time at Chuck E. Cheese. It's too
far away to invite other kids there. People here don't want to
drive an hour to take a kid to a birthday party.
Now it's Sunday, and it's back to work, with a week of lunch
duty and a half-day for inservice which makes the schedule
run in reverse so I have to appear at my other building in the
morning and throws me all out of whack. It makes me want
to whack somebody, actually. I am a creature of habit. And
a creature of the dark, #1 son tells me. And a creature of
procrastination, but I have an excuse, because I am an
Aquarius and we are known for being dreamers, not doers.
And being hard-headed, too, I believe. Who knew? I'm sure
nobody has ever gotten that impression of me. Except maybe
HH, since he calls me that all the time.
So I had a birthday, which is good, I guess, because I have
survived another year. At middle school, a kid reading the
announcements over the intercom mentioned that Saturday
was my birthday. One of my students said, "How old did
you say you were?" And I replied, "You can't trick me that
easily. I DIDN'T say how old I was, and I'm not GOING TO
say how old I am. But I guess it's better to get older than
to be dead." She looked at me like I was crazy. But they
do that pretty often anyway.