Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Lesson #1,000,003

Paper towels and hot burning wires inside toaster ovens do not mix.

Nor does spraying water on inside (I, thankfully, did NOT do that; just adding as a warning for those miscreants who think that might be advisable).

No kitchens were harmed in the burning fire inside the counter top toaster oven.

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Lesson #1,000,002

Fingers do not work well as knife sharpeners.

Sunday, February 20, 2011


Got asked to submit survey for M&M/Mars.  :D

I think this one I shall have to complete.  Don't 'cha think?

Not that it will make any difference - I still have not received my refunds as promised by the supervisor on Monday, February 14th - you know, Valentine's Day???

Not that it will make any difference - a company who is that lack on the front end, is surely that lax on the back.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Chemistry 101

I got this from OMDG a few months (EEEK - a year ago already??):

do the problems three times
make sure to understand the process for solving said problems

Sleep.  Eat.  Drink.  Get an "A"...

My son is not learning this.  Makes me natty in the head.  So dang smart.  So much exactly like ME!  I really hope he is not 45+ chasing his dream, and that he figures things out earlier to have all his dreams come true, on time, as they should.

BTW - the 2nd order from M&Ms was delivered for free with the paid price refunded.  Apparently, though it is regularly 25 F here, they marked the hard candies "Perishable" - Sir H's admin told him.  He knows... He is in Australia (yes, Sydney to my reader(s) there).

Bwahahaa - he does not "know" know tho - wait until the roast begins... to tell or not to tell. 

Hint or not to hint?

That is the question swirling in my brain right now.

Monday, February 14, 2011

8 Phone Calls

and it was wrong, late, and undelivered.

Good thing he is in another country, basking in the warm delight of knowing he gave me the best Valentine's Day ever...

The only thing M&M/Mars could say was, "We're so sorry that we fubarred both orders, we're refunding them both, in full."


At least one of us is happy!  (Roses are gorgeous!)

Friday, February 11, 2011

Sometimes, I Am Just NOT

that interesting.  Probably more often than I care to admit.  Sometimes I think I'm damn funny, look around to see who else is laughing and get these really puzzled, curious stares back at me which scream "DORK!"

So, here is another story, kind of funny, very true.

Back space a second:

A few months, almost a year ago, I alluded to Sir Hawtsalot.  I'm not going to say much more about him (he doesn't read here anyway), but again, I am blessed.  He gets me... my quirks, my humor, my life.  He also forgave me for my very prescriptive channeling of Julia Roberts in "Runaway Bride" ... so, for this Valentine's Day, my first with someone in my life so deserving of all great things, I wanted whatever I did for the man who has everything (literally), to be perfect. 

Enter my ADHD coupled with a slight bit of exaggerated OCD.

M&M/Mars has personalized candies.  You can put your logo, clip art, slogan, picture, whatever you want on the M&Ms.  I thought perfect - cute little sayings related to he and I.  Perfect in a dish with the colors of his house.  Perfect for the man who can and does buy himself anything.  Perfect for the man who does not over indulge in sweets.  Tasty, tiny treats to be cherished a few at a time.  Tiny reminders of our time together.

Without abandon, I ordered the candies.

Then OCD got hold of me.

I'd put 11,000' as the reminder of flinging me out of an airplane at that height above the ground.  My son wondered why not "sandbag" ... and then it all started.

I called the candy maker to get the 11,000' changed to "En Passant" which is similar in story to "sandbag" but not quite.  Funnier as the actual sandbag sits on Sir Hawtslot's desk at home.  (Seriously, Dear, you can throw the damn thing! but he won't... I played a fun Betsy Ross one morning... I digress)

The customer service rep said she'd changed the 11,000' to En Passant.  Gleefully happy, and giggly with anticipation (yes, we docs-to-be do get giggly), OCD kicked in again.

Should have changed the shipping address while I was at it... to him...to work or to home.  I pondered.  Work.

I called the candy maker (this is call #2).  Asked if we could change the ship-to address.  She gladly said yes, then asked the details.  I asked her to clarify what the slogan from prior call now read...

En PaFFant

eek!!!!  She eagerly changed the saying to be correct.  Then asked if there was anything else she could do for me and this order and we hung up.

OCD kicked in again.

I checked the order and the details.  Apparently, oh, how to explain this, Sir Hawtslot has a funny last name.  Paired with mine and we are walking Jay Leno name laugh.  Seriously, people see our names together and we need not say a word.  Our last names paired do it alone.  Our names are stand up comedy at its best.

I digress... but apparently, his last name was not suitable for the billing address, so customer agent #2 changed it thinking for some reason, I must have been poking fun at him or something... no, that really is his last name as surely as mine is mine.

Oh, and Sir Hawtsalot is a senior executive with a global, Fortune 100 so I wanted his title on the end of his name in deference as the package IS going to his company.  I never forget my audience or who might see the package. 

Apparently, Sir Hawtsalot now became someone else and a Sr to boot... oh and a VP, not an SVP.

And custy service rep #2 also botched:

The company name (which I spelled)
The address of the company up to and including, the city name

My OCD kicked and thankfully, before the candies were actually shipped, I was on the phone with customer service rep #3.

And behind Customer Service #3 (To James Lewis - you rock!), was a young man who wanted to make things right for me, and obviously, for M&M/Mars.  Because at the point he got my phone call, I was... unhappy.

What had started off as a fun, flirty way to tell Sir Hawtsalot that I adore him without uttering those words, was quickly turning into a disaster.  The box with the candies would have represented me and the poor misspelled words, the address, his name, his title, his company were all wrong ... no disrespect to M&M but I could care less about your representation, this was all about his company representatives seeing the box and THEIR first impression of ME.

Anyway, cust rep #3 took his time, explicitly read back everything he typed; made sure every tiny detail was correct.  Then said he would pull the already done box back from FedEx, redo the order, and ship correctly.  He just needed the CC #s again and we'd be done.  Order to be delivered to Sir Hawtsalot on Monday.

Then my cell phone died.  I have no land line.  He called me back.  Got the #s and then... their billing system died.  He called me back 6 hours later, got the CC#s, finalized the order, sent me confirmations, and hung up.

I called his management team to let them know how well he'd handled the situation.

Then... OCD struck again.

I checked the order.

Company name was wrong.  Worldwide.  NOT World World.

Call #4 to M&M.  Yes, 4 calls.  It got worse.

By the way, the Richard Clayderman music they play while one is on hold, is forever etched into my head... as well as the conversations between Red M&M and Yellow M&M.

Call #4 got the order completely messed up back to the original messed up order that created call #2 - address wrong, company wrong, name wrong, city wrong...

Call #5 to get the changes customer service rep #4 made was solid.  She was kind, helpful, read everything back.  Said the order was scheduled to be delivered on Monday - you know, Valentine's Day?!?

Yes.  She said everything was scheduled correctly.  All was good.

Apparently, the web service that links to M&M/Mars customer portal information doesn't give the information appropriately.  the order still looked wrong.


Call #6 ensured the order would print with the address correctly despite that it looks wrong on the customer portal.

Happy!  I was finished!

I got the confirm of creation and shipping.  Elated!  Finally!!  THREE hours on the phone with customer service at M&M/Mars and FINALLY!!! It was correct!

Or not.

It is now scheduled to be delivered late on Tuesday, February 15th.

Ask me, you think I will ever, ever think of ordering ANYTHING from M&M/Mars????

Make it a great day ~ thankfully, I had a back up plan and gift for Sir Hawtslot in mind and it is being delivered to me, tomorrow.

(I'm on the phone with M&M/Mars - again, #7)

Friday, February 4, 2011


was used to describe Dad's disease now.

Prostrate cancer.

Does he have a 10 year life expectancy?  If so, we go one way in treatment.

If not, well...


Thursday, February 3, 2011

Who Knew?

General chemistry revisited.  My first semester back seems so long ago and thankfully, some of the nonsense I put up with (and honestly, was too naive to know how to end it), is far behind me.

So is my memory of some things:

orbital spin
PV=nRT (okay, I have not forgotten that part)
hybrid orbit

Thankfully, my son is taking chemistry this semester.  Kind of cool - almost like a built-in refresher course for when I hopefully take the MCAT (next May, if you're wondering, as in May2012).  As my date has been now pushed off by two full years from inception, it is going to be less about my grades and more about remembering the stuff I knew.

I hope it's more like riding a bike, than relearning to play the flute or sax or piano.

And if not, I have a built-in!  "Mom, what forms at the top of an open flask when a kernel of popcorn bursts?"  And, "Is the kernel popping a chemical, physical or both transformation?"  Not to be outdone by, "Mom, if an electron falls from an outer ring orbit to an orbit closer to the nucleus, what is that called?"  Oh yes, I've gone from "Mom who knows squat!!" to "Mom who can help me get a great grade!"  (I like the latter!)

Make it a great day :)

(P.S.  Dad is doing pretty well - frail, but coherent and trying to be funny!)

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Continued Improvement

Dad continues to improve and I guess the biggest turning point in my mind, is the taking out of the vent tube.

Last night I was scared.  Frightened NOT because of the machinery around him thumping, pumping, and "whirring" but more because his body was not producing urine nor was his heart rate stable.

As I drove home the lonely 72 mile stretch of snowy pavement ahead of me, I called a good friend of mine who lost her own mother last January. 

There's no doubt that her experience with her mom played out in her head last night as she told me signs to look for, what to expect, what to hope for, and what to look away from.

Thankfully, Dad is showing all the GOOD signs, and I am, thankful again this year!