If Sunday was super, why does Monday suck?

Notes from the weekend

My old Honda came down with a cracked windshield last week, so I had to call my insurance carrier to place a claim. The South Asian lady on the other end of the line was very polite, very professional and very well-scripted. Since they’re typically dealing with people who are reporting damage and injuries of one sort or another, they’ve been trained to express a sympathetic tone at mention of the accident. At each mention of the accident. 

She went through a long list of questions about my claim, which required me to repeat several times that I had a small fissure in my glass. Each time I mentioned it, she replied carefully, “I’m so sorry to hear of your loss.” 

The first time I said “thanks.” The next time I said, “Oh, it’s not so bad.” By the third time, I was getting pretty annoyed at her pre-programmed compassion, and became tempted to amp up my response. 

“You have no idea how painful this is for me,” I wanted to say. “I’ve had that windshield ever since I bought this car back in 2001. Every day I looked through it at oncoming traffic, and every day it allowed my vision to pass through, even though I’m sure there were mornings when it would rather have been opaque than transparent. We had a very special relationship, and now it’s gone. Gone! It can never be replaced. 

“But if it can, I’ll have the car outside my home, located at 384 Brookside Drive, and can be there between 1:30 and 4 p.m. for the Autoglass replacement guys.” 

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Spent Sunday working (again). Note to management: When the men’s room runs out of paper towels, toilet paper is NOT considered an acceptable substitute. What kind of way is this to run a Fortune 500 company?  

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I see the Animal Planet network showed the “Puppy Bowl” again yesterday. This annual bit of genius counter-programming to the Super Bowl involves numerous playful young dogs cavorting on a green carpet painted like a football field. I wonder if the Puppy Who played at halftime?  

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This year it was Pete Townsend’s turn to have a wardrobe malfunction during the halftime show. He had to constantly flip back the edge of his cardigan to keep it from interfering with his trademark guitar strokes, and then every time he jumped, we got to see his pasty sixty-something midriff. The head scarf he borrowed from Axl Rose and the fedora he borrowed from your hipster cousin further confused those who expected to see the seminal guitar hero and instead witnessed the reincarnation of Elvis Costello’s dad. Still, a great show. 

And they had fireworks! 

As for the ads, I’d like to thank all the old people (Betty White, Abe Vigoda, Jim McMahon), all the midgets and all the animals for allowing themselves to be run over. And to all the scruffy late-twenty-something protagonists of just about every commercial, thanks for being so cool and giving my son such a high level of slackery to strive for. 

And this just in: Queen Latifah has finally finished singing “America the Beautiful.” 

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If you sit next to someone all day at work and barely speak to him, why do you have to say “hi” when you encounter him the bathroom?  

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Another bizarre news story out of my adopted home state of South Carolina this week. Workers at a Columbia-area KFC arrived in the morning to find a car already waiting at the drive-thru window. When the driver did not respond to requests to take his order, the manager investigated and found the man dead in the driver’s seat.  

I think I was behind this guy in the line at McDonald’s last week.  

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Shouldn’t our federal education policy leave at least some children behind? At least for the sake of future Wal-Marts.  

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Speaking of America’s favorite big-box retailer, I overheard a couple of people talking in their seagull-infested parking lot the other day. (Just driving by — I swear). “The worst thing about working at Wal-Mart would be having to be nice to the people who shop there,” said the first man. “I don’t think the employees see that as an issue,” observed the second.  

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And what is the deal with all the seagulls in the parking lot anyway? The birds presumably have a choice between floating softly on a sea breeze above a picturesque harbor, and eating garbage disgorged from people’s cars in Wal-Mart parking lots. And they choose the latter? Maybe it’s a South Carolina thing.  

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Before the Super Bowl, the airwaves were filled with predictions of results for the big game. This always seemed like a pointless exercise to me. No one can tell with any certainty what’s going to happen, and anyone can make as good a guess as anyone else.  

That’s why I’m going to try something a little different. Instead of a prediction, I’m going to make a post-diction: New Orleans 37, Indianapolis 21.  

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What exactly is the point of having Jesus' evil twin brother selling insurance all over the internet?

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Tearful quote of the week, from a visibly upset mistress of Tiger Woods at her press conference: “I’ve come forward because I think it’s wrong to make a golf ball with my face on it.” She said she was really uncomfortable stepping into the public eye like that, but she’s doing it for all the other women out there, including daughters yet unborn, who may one day face the trauma of having their faces put on golf balls.  

And also, there’s the forthcoming book she wrote.  

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Interesting story in the press this week about the so-called “greying of the blogosphere.” Apparently, keeping a blog has become something more likely to be done by older people, while the younger generation invests its time and energy into short forms like Facebook and Twitter. So once again, I find myself at the cutting edge of trend-killing.  

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Have you ever noticed how tiresome observational humor has become?  

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The safety committee at work came up with the very reasonable concern that electric space heaters could be a fire hazard. With highly variable temperature conditions throughout our office, some people were using company-provided heaters to stay warm. Somebody accidentally left theirs on one evening, so now we have a written standard policy and a “check-out” procedure for heaters.  

At the beginning of each shift, if you want a heater you have to sign a clipboard list indicating the date, heater number, time out and time in. The system is periodically audited by a mid-level manager.  

“Your safety is our number one concern,” explains the sign at the heater depository. Then it adds, somewhat off-topic I think, “Please be aware of others.”  

Incidentally, these small appliances feature the latest in modern design. They are so stylish, I believe the “space” actually refers to outer space, where their elegance would make them right at home. They even project an eerie red light onto the floor in front of them that indicates a danger zone of possible fire danger. Makes them look like a cousin of R2-D2, who was also available for checkout on the Millennium Falcon, as I recall.  

"Beep beep," says R2's cousin

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3 Responses to “If Sunday was super, why does Monday suck?”

  1. GoingLikeSixty Says:

    You didn’t ask, but here are some reactions:
    The Who. Boomer at table asked who was playing… and we went into who’s on stage routine.

    Queen Latifah – America the Beautiful: stupid players thought it was National Anthem. Dopes. BTW: at the bar I was watching, they actually stood up during National Anthem!

    Geezers rule the blogs – except for a few very very clever Xers who have a huge following.

    Observational humor is never tiresome.

    Heaters – there actually a person who is assigned the task of going around and UNPLUGGING all the coffee pots in the office. (Think of all the other electrical stuff that remains plugged in!) And I have a heater like that!

  2. spicyt Says:

    This is my favorite blog in a long time! But then again, my standards are low….no, just kidding! This was one that made me laugh more than once! 😉 Thanks!

  3. S Fox Says:

    Observational humour is no more tiresome than I am … oh dear. Well, if it wasn’t for observational humour, we’d only have observational tears.
    And what is the deal with this superbowl anyway? Isn’t the world cup and the olympics enough?If the species is to survive, all competitive sports must be banned. Join my prohibitionist movement today, the abolitdeportivos. Currently there is only one member, but I’m hoping to convince my wife to join as well.

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