The Fallout 4 Hike

I decided to make my hike fun.  Once I figured out that I had a theme, the rest fell into place.   Now, this page has a video!  Most of the same pictures, had to remove a few to fit the song.  Enjoy!


Preston Garvey is starting to grind my gears. Who’s the General?  Me. So why is that guy telling me what to do?  I should be ordering him to clear out Raiders or Ghouls or Super Mutants. Seriously, all I ever see him do is putter around Sanctuary and fix the same section of siding every single day. 

Whatever. I need some fresh air. Some new Settler slept in my bed last night so I ended up crashing with Maria Long. She’s a bundle of joy. Better than Mama Murphy, though. Ever since she went off the Chems all she does is talk about the good old days and how she doesn’t have “the sight” anymore. I get it, lady, you’re not as spry as you used to be and I made you stop taking drugs. You should be thanking me.

Asked MacReady if he wanted to come with me, but he’s all freaked out about some price on his head. Dude, you leave The Gunners – there will be a reckoning.  And this is a surprise how?  They’re mercenaries!!

I’d ask Piper, but as cute as that lisp of hers is, she asks too many questions. Yes, indoor showers were great. Yes, driving in cars was wayyyy faster than walking. Yes, Sugar Bombs taste pretty much the same, even though they’re 200 years past their expiration date. No, I don’t think Nick Valentine is “kinda cute”. He’s a nice guy, but he’s missing half his face.

I’m not asking Danse. He’s a great guy, but if I hear, “Ad Victorium!” or “For the Brotherhood!” over one more mole rat kill, he’s getting a Super Sledge to the knee caps.

I’ll bring Dogmeat. We can play fetch on the way.  He’s so cute with those teddy bears.

Probably best this way. He doesn’t get all judgmental if I don’t do things his way like the rest of my companions.

Yeah. How did your low-cost apocalypse shelter work out for you?  Not so well, huh?  There’s either a ghoul or a skeleton in a Trilby hat in there. Either way, not worth the effort.

Okay, so I’m off to find some place called Eagle Peak to activate the radio relay so the Minutemen will have a larger signal range. Easy enough. I like watching the dish thingies move up the poles when the power goes on. Fun!

I love those lion statues!  Seriously, I need to find that issue of Picket Fences so I can put them up in Sanctuary.  I think it’ll be a nice change of pace from all the machine gun turrets. Yep. The Settlers complain about those, too. And how loud the generators are. Seriously, people, would you rather walk the Commonwealth as Stingwing fodder?

I even put up a basketball hoop, but noooooo.

Found a bathroom. No traps to disarm outside the stall, thank goodness, but rather than a Ghoul or a Raider, I find this insanity. I don’t think I have to tell you how freaking cold it gets in the winter, so just imagine – if you will – planting your sensitive little tushie on one of these bad boys at 20 below.  Sure, it survived an apocalypse, but who in their right mind would use it?  Fine, you can squat for number one, but what if you had too many Mirelurk omelettes?  That’s just mean.

Water used to be so simple. Now it’s like a knife to the gut. And me with no Purified water. Blast. Gotta prepare better next time. I’ve been working out and since I don’t have a companion with me, I can carry tons more with that Lone Wanderer perk.

Oh great. It’s happened. Now I have that darn song in my head. Blast you, Dion, and your catchy tunes!

‘Cause I’m the wanderer

Yeah, the wanderer

I roam around, around, around

Oh well, I roam from town to town

I go through life without a care

And I’m as happy as a clown

With my two fists of iron and I’m going nowhere

 Pfft. I could bust through this creek easy. No need for Power Armor. I just need a good running start!

Okay, now which way? 

Okay, I know it’s just a tree, but you gotta admit that it looks a heck of a lot more comfortable than that metal atrocity back at the restroom.

It’s a wonder we – as a society – didn’t implode earlier. The sign clearly says to stay on the trails.  As you can also see, no one paid attention to it. Seriously, a few well-placed laser traps would nip that problem in the bud.

That feisty little shrubbery is growing out of a rock!  Pip-Boy salute to you, feisty little shrubbery!

Good gravy on a hot plate, I have to get up there??  Why can’t I fast travel to places I haven’t been?  They’re as clear as day on my Pip-Boy map as the ones I have visited. Vault-Tec, you suck.

Well, I guess there’s nothing for it except to hike. I have a Squirrel-on-Stick somewhere around here…  Synths? Fabulous. If there is a Courser among them, I’m busting out the Fat Man.  Maybe they’re just those weirdos from Covenant. Something is not right about them. Those people make my teeth itch.

Either way, time for stealth. I’m not interested in awkward conversation or a battle royale. I just want to get this gig over with.

Quiet, Dogmeat. We’re supposed to be sneaking. Your whining is going to get us into another brawl. Seriously, we need to work on this, boy.

Wow. Little out of shape. Strong Back perk would be nice. Mine’s killin’ me. That sink is looking pretty good right about now.

What the blazes is this crap with the hills?  I’m going to roundhouse that hat right off of Garvey’s head when I get back to Sanctuary. This is ridiculous!  How long have I been walking?  20 minutes?!  Feels like months!!!

Oh thank goodness. Croup Manor. (I hope.) I can see the light at the end of the tunnel!  Wait. I’m not dying, am I?  Dogmeat?  Where are you?  Come back here!  I think I taste blood. Or mutfruit. Can you have epicurean hallucinations?   I need a second to catch my breath.

Yay!! The radio relay!! About damn time!  Let’s activate it and get the heck out of here.

Okay, that’s not a bad view. I could go for a Cherry Nuka Cola right now, though. That climb was b-r-u-t-a-l.  Hey, is that CIT?  I think so.  Maybe. Oh it would be so easy to hit the button that sets off the reactor. Maybe later. My dogs are barking.

Not real dogs, Dogmeat. Don’t look so offended. No, I’m not going to replace you with that cute cat from the Prydwyn.

Beware of MUTANT HOUNDS, you mean. I hate those things. You know that right around the corner of that quaint little house is a Mutant Suicider just waiting for a chance to set off his own nuke.

Seriously, how they think they’re sooo superior to us “puny humans”, I simply cannot fathom. How can I take anything they say seriously when they can’t string a sentence together?  Except Virgil. He’s my homie. Wonder if the serum worked. I should check on him.

Are those Synths holding hands?  Maybe they’re the escaped ones I helped back at Bunker Hill. I should say hello. Nah. They’re enjoying their freedom away from the Institute. Who am I to get in the way?

Okay, I know I was lamenting people not obeying publicly posted signs earlier, but you and I both know that the best loot is usually on the other side of a sign like this. Okay FINE, I’ll be a hypocrite another day. Seriously, you’re worse than Danse.

Fine. I’ll go down the way I came. One last look for posterity sake. Pretty. Too bad about the Deathclaw, though. All I’m packing is my razor sharp wit and my 10 mm Deliverer. Last thing I need to hear is, pew! pew! pew! and then the sound of my own screams as I’m shaken around like a rag doll as my limbs are chewed off.

Wow, even with pictures people are jackasses. Shush. My thought was fleeting. It’s not like I went past the Danger sign. (Mumbling) This time…

Hm. This looks promising. Usually some good stuff in a bunker. I remember that time I met that gray-haired Brotherhood of Steel soldier at that bunker. Where was it now?  Doesn’t matter. I spent hours tracking down the distress signals of his Recon squad and still he’s an ant’s tooth from blowing my head off.

That’s gratitude for ya. Thank goodness for my adorable smile and Black Widow perk or there would have been bloodshed. I’d hate to have had to explain to Elder Maxson how I blew away the surviving member of his recon unit because I lacked the appropriate communication skills.

You know, there’s no respect for the environment. It rains freaking radiation drops of acid nearly every day, you’d think people would wise up. Maybe they need to be hit with a clue-by-four. I hate those Raiders. Not only are they the worst of the scavengers, but they have potty mouths, too.

 Forget it. Ten minutes wandering around like an idiot. I give up. Thanks for that super sensitive nose of yours, Dogmeat!  No help whatsoever!!

 I must be getting closer to a trade route. Maybe Carla has a bottle of  Purified water I can buy. I’m parched!

I think I remember passing this earlier. Did I see a ranger station?  I can’t remember. With my luck it’s swarming with Bloodbugs or Stingwings. Man, I hate those things.

No water?!  I’d kick this thing over if I wasn’t worried about knocking over a mole rat mound. This place is clearly mocking me.

Women’s is out of order and the Men’s is…locked?!  I mean, there is not a lock in the Commonwealth that I can’t pick, but that’s kind of a jerk move, isn’t it?

I guess if you’re desperate there’s always the sewer. Gonna end up there anyway.

Yikes. I thought The Deathckaw was back up the hill over that ridge. Seems odd that it would be down here. And ah, the massive log was happily attached to a tree as I passed through here earlier. Best to keep on high alert. Angry Deathclaw = bad news + several Stimpacks.

Now they’re mocking me. Whatever. I’m closer to Sanctuary. I can wait.

Nice. Wild fern. Wish I knew what to do with it. A flowing hat perhaps?

What the heck?  This thing has thorns!  Ouch!  Bet those Institute Bioscientists planted them!  The cads!

Ohhhhh. Well now. I’m not on the lookout for a male Deathclaw. Apparently there is a female of the mother Deathclaw type around here somewhere. I see no egg in that pile of branches and now I fully understand why she is upset.

I’m going to back away. Slowly and silently. I like my limbs attached to my body.

Upset was too mild a word.  Clearly. Time to skedaddle. Again.

Another product of the Institute no doubt. It’s not glowing, though. And it’s huge!  What foul shenanigans are those mad scientists up to now??

Are you kidding me?  That Settler doesn’t even know his child was replaced with a Synth!  The horrors the Institute has committed!  So low!  I thought creating 10-year old Shaun was tasteless, but this is beyond the pale!  They must be stopped!

I’m so upset I can’t even drink. Don’t worry, Dogmeat, I have RadAway. I’m so mad I’d choke anyway. Or bite off the faucet.  I’ll let my burning hot indignation satiate me until I return to Sanctuary.

That place has to GO.

What’s a tick?  That’s not a tick. That’s a Radscorpion.  And good luck with insect repellant. That’s like a misted perfume to them.  Tweezers?!  LOL. Try vice grips and a flame thrower. Better yet, a laser sniper rifle. You don’t want to be home when Radscorpions come knocking.

Yep, the Railroad is nearby. Good. Maybe Desdemona or Tinker Tom has something to drink. Maybe not Tinker Tom. Last time he injected me with one of his fandangled serums, I almost broke my nose when my face hit the floor.

It looked so inviting I had to. It tasted like nothing I’ve had since before the bombs went off. A type of lettuce maybe?  No rad-y after-effects either!  What are you, you sweet ambrosia?

What is that?  Rotting tato  and mutfruit?  Maybe a Yao Guai will wander by and eat it. They’ll eat anything. I know. I’ve seen the bones.

Drummer Boy got a little creative with the color, methinks. I wonder if it was tribute to the fair Desdemona?  I thought maybe Deacon and Desdemona were an item, but this will add some sparks to the mix. Plot twist!

I sure hope KL-E-O takes this crushed bottle cap I found on the road. Then again, what can you buy with one crushed bottle cap besides a wisecrack these days?  Inflation.

Ugh. Mirelurk eggs. Freaking piles of them. If they all start hatching at once I will lose it. Backing away slowly. Again.

Home soon. I can feel it. Just passed Red Rocket Pit Stop.

 Whoever threw this Molotov Cocktail obviously missed. No charred remains.

 My senses are tingling. Hope there isn’t a pack of Mirelurks nearby. I WILL shoot the gas tank and light. Them. Up.

Well, that’s a new one. Something you want to tell me, Dogmeat?  Huh, boy?

Not even worth opening the mailbox.  Oh!  I see Sanctuary. Good. I have a hankering for a Deathclaw steak.
Finally!  Home. What a pain in the butt. Lot of near-misses on the way back.

Whats that, Deacon?  I could have fast-traveled back from the relay?  Hey, maybe I forgot. Okay?  Maybe you need a knuckle sandwich. Better yet, you keep talking about a new face, how’s about I give you one in a kaleidoscope of black and blue?

Maybe I’ll borrow that pompadour as a chew toy for Dogmeat. How ’bout that?


Boring Information That’s Actually Important

  1. Airplane safety procedures.  Do you know how to inflate that life preserver if the plane plummets into the freezing Pacific Ocean?
  2. The “do not top off” gas pump warning.  Other than the fact that someone can probably turn your car into a bonfire from the trail of gas trickling down the concrete, you not only just wasted several cents, but you’re gonna have to wipe the gas off the side of your car unless you relish damaging that expensive paint job.
  3. Wearing safety goggles.  It’s probably best to say adios to looking cool and hola to keeping your eyes in your sockets where they belong.
  4. Metal objects in electrical sockets.  Because you will, in fact, get a shock.  Sure, the sound is kind of fun, but the scare is not worth it.
  5. Letting steam out of the popcorn bag slowly.  It’s amazing how much hot compressed air really does burn like a freaking furnace to the face.
  6. Touching hot pans.  Remember when Mom used to nag nag nag about not touching the pan on the heated element?  And then, years later, as an adult – you did?  Call your mom.  Right now.  And say you’re sorry.
  7. Utilizing the toilet waste receptacles.  My gosh, please.  I get that you’re done, but I haven’t started yet and there’s a big piece of hospital bed paper sitting halfway inside the toilet and your bum has been on it and I really don’t want to touch it.  Oh, and for the love of Pete, it’s not like they need a sign to say this, but please flush.  Is it really so technical?  I hope you washed your hands!  Don’t even get me started on flow days…
  8. Reading IKEA instructions.  This is mandatory.  Unless you like sitting in your living-room with a small army of L-screws, bolts, wing nuts, square nuts, carriage bolts, hex bolts (now I don’t even know what I’m saying) and thread cutting machine screws with plenty of time to rip your own hair out.
  9. Mixing colors and whites in the wash.  However, if – like me – you do it enough times, someone else will eventually take over the laundry because he doesn’t appreciate pink boxer shorts.
  10. Microwave heating instructions.  Because if it can cook a cat, it can burn your meal.
  11. Washing labels.  Cashmere sweater + hot water + dryer = Barbie sweater.
  12. Signs about not feeding the animals.  You’re just giving them an entitlement complex.  It’s bad enough in America, must we inflict this kind of self-indulgent laziness on the animal kingdom, too?  Plus, as an added bonus, you might get your hand chomped off.
  13. Test instructions.  They really do throw in a curve-ball when they tell you any answer letter but “C”.  Alternatively, using pencil or a specific color of pen and getting 0/100 because the scanner couldn’t read your ink.
  14. Hazardous Materials warnings.  Well, if you’re wondering why your fingers are melting off, you might want to go back and check the label a little more thoroughly this time.
  15. Danger warnings.  Really?  If my parachute’s not totally secure and double checked, it’s possible I might actually die if I hit the ground at 90 miles per hour?  Well, that’s good to know.  How else can this little adventure go wrong?
  16. Reading ingredient labels.  It only takes one peanut allergy and a frantic drive to the ER for anaphylactic shock to encourage you to check those food labels.
  17. Movie theater etiquette clips.  I get it.  They’re not funny.  They try, but they’re not.  Now, you may not care that you’re not supposed to be texting, talking, laughing, encouraging your infant to scream during an R-Rated horror movie, or toss your popcorn around, but it’s a safe bet that someone nearby will inform you…with extreme physical prejudice…if you cheese them off badly enough.  If there was a public movie-theater shaming system, I’d contribute to it gladly.  And anonymously.
  18. “By appointment only” signs.  You only need to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous time sinks to make a mental note and do your homework next time.
  19. Higher education deadlines.  They really do not care if you miss them.  At all.  Really.  They’ll happily take your money and give you the F, not enroll you in the class, and/or not let you graduate.  Plus, you’re in college now.  Srsly?
  20. Instructions on ANY government form.  Because they also don’t care if you didn’t fill it out correctly.  They don’t even have to answer the phone so you’ll probably end up screaming at a recorded message.
  21. One size does NOT fit all.  Sorry, the label just lied to you.  They can say it in a million different ways and for a million different items, but it is NOT TRUE.
  22. Warning signs about walking on ice-covered lakes.  We’ve all seen the movies where people fall through the ice, get trapped underneath, and can only stare helplessly at the sky through the thick layer of frozen water as they panic and drown.  If that isn’t the freakiest way to die dumbly, I don’t know what is.  (Actually, if you give me a few minutes, I can probably come up with a few things.)
  23. Q-Tips in your ears.  Actually, I don’t know why not.  My friend’s mom in elementary school used bobby pins in her daughter’s ears to get out the wax.  This seems far kinder.  And I wouldn’t want to put my elbow in my ear, even if I could.
  24. Mixing bleach and toilet bowl cleaner warnings.   While the fecal stains may be make their way off your toilet bowl, your dead body on the side of the toilet probably isn’t worth it.  Combining the two produces a deadly chlorine gas.  Maybe it would be better to clean the toilet bowl a little more regularly.  Or poop at a friend’s house.
  25. This Side Up.  From fax to photocopies, nothing screams newb like receiving a blank document.  Especially if it’s a hundred pages and you went off to get a coffee.
  26. Expiration dates.  Unless you’re a fan of plenty of diseases, it’s probably a good idea to pay attention to these.  They’re not “best before” dates, but expiration dates.  As in “expire”.  As in “don’t eat it unless you’re desperate” and even then, have that clean toilet bowl ready.
  27. Flight Times and Gate Numbers.  There’s nothing more fun than running, last-minute, for a flight and discovering it left an hour ago, the gate changed to the other side of the airport, or the flight was yesterday.
  28. Pop-Up Messages.  Your computer is probably trying to tell you something.  Like, for instance, “do you want to delete all files and erase the hard drive?” is probably something worth reading before you mindlessly click that “OK” button.
  29. Staring at the sun.  Because you could, like, go blind or something.  Then you can’t stare at it anymore what with those damaged retinas.
  30. Backing over traffic spikes.  Sure, there’s that teeny tiny part of you that is exhilarated while you drive forward over these things, but imagine the ridiculous amount of tire damage you’d cause if you backed over them.  Maybe the pop! sound would be worth it.  For half a nanosecond.  Then you’d just feel dumb.

Excuses – But Better


Do you ever have something come up and someone asks you about it and your reason (or excuse) is so dumb you wish you could offer a less lame way to explain it? Well, fret no more, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve done all the heavy lifting for you.

Acute Apathy Disorder

“I just didn’t feel like it.”

Apparel Misappropriation

“My sister swiped the shirt I was going to wear.”

Apparel Sanitation Deficiency

“I have no clean clothes.”

Benign Positional Stasis

“I’m grounded.”

Conflicting EleGrav Forces

“I fell.”

Domestic Fracture

“I broke up with my girlfriend/boyfriend.”

Emotional Attachment Failure

“I just didn’t care.”

Extended Photinus Pyralis Media Intake

“I stayed home to watch the entire Firefly series instead.”

False Depth Perception Calculation

“I walked/fell into a [insert object].”

Feline Agitation Miscalculation

“My cat scratched me.”

Financial Resource Allotment Deficiency

“I didn’t bring enough money.”

Global Communication Blackout

“My internet went down.”

Ocular Media Alternative

“I read a book instead.”

Olfactory Pheromone Resistance

“I don’t like the way he/she smells.”

Pet Product Extraction

“The cat/dog threw up.”

Social Incongruence

“I don’t like him/her.”

Vehicular Fuel Intake Adjustment

“I had to get gas.”

Waste Transit Redirect

“I had to take out the garbage.”

Clean Joke: The Naughty Parrot


So there’s this fella with a parrot.  Unfortunately, this parrot swears like a sailor, I mean this bird is a pistol.  He can swear for five minutes straight without repeating himself.  The trouble is, the guy who owns him is a quiet, conservative type, and this bird’s foul mouth is driving him crazy.

One day, it gets to be too much, so the guy grabs the bird by the throat, shakes him really hard, and yells, “QUIT IT!”   This just makes the bird mad and he swears more than ever.

Then the guy gets mad and says, “That’s it,” and locks the bird in a kitchen cabinet.

This really aggravates the bird and he claws and scratches, so when the guy finally lets him out, the bird cuts loose with a stream of invective that would make a veteran sailor blush.

At that point, the guy is so mad that he throws the bird into the freezer.

For the first few seconds there is a terrible din.  The bird kicks and claws and thrashes. Then it suddenly gets very quiet.

At first, the guy just waits, but then he starts to think that the bird may be hurt.  After a couple of minutes of silence, he’s so worried that he opens up the freezer door to check on the bird.

The bird calmly climbs onto the man’s out-stretched arm and says in very polite tones, “I’m awfully sorry about the trouble I gave you earlier.  I’ll do my best to improve my vocabulary from now on.”

The man is astounded.  He can’t understand the transformation that has come over the parrot.

Then the parrot says, “Just out of curiosity, what did the chicken do?”

My Life as a Lucy Skit: Episode 1

I like to call this episode:  The Back and the Bottle

For those of you not familiar with my utter disregard for the English language when it comes to phrases, you can check out my Melissaisms post so you understand what a “Lucy skit” is, especially if you were born before the year 1980.

My back has been sore, really sore, for about four weeks now.  Some days, I felt like Fonzie in his “old suit” from Happy Days moaning and groaning as I rolled out of bed.  No, seriously, I literally had to roll out of bed, let my feet flop onto the floor, and then drag myself up by the bedpost.  If it didn’t hurt so much, it’d be pretty hilarious.  Actually, never mind, it hurt and it’s still funny.  Laugh away.  It took me three minutes to make my way to the bathroom for morning ablutions (which is not the same as absolutions, by the way).

Anyway, on this particular day, the pain was so bad that I just decided to stay in bed, rock the heating pad, and catch up on Season 1 of Suits.  Epicurially speaking, I was exceptionally well stocked with my Trader Joes baked corn chips, a big bottle of orange seltzer fresh from the frigid-y fridge, and my iPad.  There may have been some chocolate.  Look, I’m wounded, chocolate heals all ailments.  Don’t you judge me!

So I’m flopped down in bed, pillow under my knees, heating pad scorching my back (I really need to figure out how to lower the temp on that thing), enjoying the episode of Suits where Harvey and his protege, Mike, trade witty movie quotes and Harvey solves an insolvable legal situation within the last three minutes of the episode, when I have this strange thought:

Huh…this bottle of seltzer sure is sweating.

I touch my leg and it’s damp.  Seriously, people, this is the way my mind works.  I think:

Wow, that fridge must have been cold.

I ignore the bottle and continue watching the show.  Did I notice that the bottle was on its side?  Sure, but the cap was on.  That’s the great thing about caps: they keep the liquid inside the bottle.

I finish the episode and move on to the next one.  But my leg is really wet now and so I tap it again.  Then, I partially lift the covers and see a wet spot the size of a baseball on the bed.  My first thought is:

But the cap was closed…

Or was it?

Doesn’t matter.  This looks bad and there is no way I can pin it on the cat.  Cats simply do not urinate orange seltzer.  Plus, I get it into my head that my husband is going to think that I wet the bed in the middle of the afternoon.  (Swing back to the illogical comment about urine and smell.)

So, after a moment or two of, “I can’t believe that bottle leaked”, now I’m cheesed because my back hurts and I gotta hide the evidence that I was eating in bed!  Okay, corn chips, tossed on the floor.  Luckily, they landed open side up or that would have added insult to injury.  Get it?  Injury?  Back injury?  Whatever.  The mint M&Ms (oh right, that’s what I was eating) land on the night table beside me, clicking against each other in the (thankfully) sealed bag.

At this point, it still hasn’t dawned on me that liquid and a heated blanket make for “electrifying”, yet potentially Darwinian, stories and that I’d probably dodged a major bullet.  I managed to wriggle gracelessly out from under it and drop it on the floor.

I finally (again) flop myself off the bed, but not before fighting with the cover sheet and comforter, which had suddenly wound themselves around my legs and the pillow while I was trying to escape from the heating pad.  Let me tell you, every single twist ached.  You know the kind.  The one where you surprise yourself with a yelp.   I was like a puppy surprised by the bite of a really big flea.

Okay, now that I’m finally out of the bed, I have to bend over and pull all the covers back to get a good look at the mattress.

Wow.  That’s a lot of liquid.

That’s not a baseball, that’s a beach ball!

We’ve had an issue with particularly industrious (and committed) ants in the kitchen lately and I start to freak out, thinking all sorts of inane things.  You’d think I was on some kind of psychotropic drug with all the freakouts, but no, it’s just my own mind doing it’s thing.  So I have this scenario in my head where these ants somehow make their way from the kitchen, all the way through the living-room, down the hall, into our bedroom, smack dab into the middle of the mattress.  And then I start to imagine all these little creatures nested inside the bed,  burrowing and having babies, waiting until the black of night when we’re asleep and unaware, to slip out and start walking over my face and arms.  I started feeling invisi-ants immediately.  (Seriously, I just had to check my arm.  Even just writing this, I totally thought I had one walking over it.)

Not much I can do about the mattress, so I have to lug that freaking comforter off the bed.  The cat freaks out and thinks it’s play time at the zoo.  He launches himself onto the covers and has a field day.  Now I have to get the fitted sheet off the bed, along with the pillow top cover thingy, which means (you guessed it) more leaning, more stretching, more groans.

Rather than just lift and carry, instead, I grab the fitted/pillowtop and drag them down the hall.  Miko goes crazy and chases the sheet all the way down the hall.  I have to somehow get this mass of fabric out the door without the cat (who is an indoor cat, but likes to spontaneously make a break for it when the side door is open), down the steps, close the door (more twiiiiistinggggg), and into the garage where the washer and dryer are.

Mission one accomplished, I go back inside where the cat was waiting for me with his nose pressed against the crack of the door, ready to bolt.  One stern command from me and he backed off.  I was in no mood!

Now I have to go back for the dang comforter, which is bulky and heavy and wetter than I thought.  If I can’t lift some iddy biddy sheet and a pillow top, you know I’m going to be miserable with this thing.  So, whatever.  Deal, Mel.  I grab it and begin dragging.  This thing is far more voluminous that the other fabric and it’s clunky!  I’m draaaaaagging it through the house, doing a little impromptu floor sweep as I make my way down the hall, and draaaag it through the recycle bags, and the cat dish, and the shoes, and the ant traps right by the door in the kitchen.

Another warning to the cat as I slide open the dining room door and haul that thing outside, close the door and try and flop it on the outdoor chair to air out.  Well, I can’t get the stupid thing to hang right so that the wet part is facing the sun!  So I’m fiddling with this fabric monstrosity, grabbing (and pulling, and tweaking my back) more chairs over so finally I have this tent-like structure made out of comforter in the backyard.

I get back inside and open the sliding glass door in the bedroom with the hope that the breeze will help with speed-drying the mattress.  It didn’t occur to me that perhaps a door to the outside world just a few feet away was even easier access for ants.  Unlike the kitchen, say, which was all the way on the other side of the house.  Finally, I just had to accept the fact that I wasn’t going to be able to replace the mattress with a new one by the time Ron got home and maybe ants weren’t attracted to orange seltzer.  It’s not like it was a sugar-filled (‘scuse me, corn syrup-filled) bottle of Coke.  Maybe seltzer (even flavoured) was too bitter to even be appetizing?

Back to the bed.  I’m not even near done.  I still have to replace the fitted sheet!

Anyone who has ever made a bed knows that the fitted sheet is the worst part.  The leaning.  The bending.  The lifting.  The slip of fabric falling back.  The lifting again.  The tucking.  The realization that the stupid sheet is facing the wrong direction!  So now I gotta fight with that.

Again, the cat’s riding the sheet like it’s Splash Mountain in Disneyland.  I’m not going to lie when I say to you that I considered just locking him inside it, cute or not.

So all of this pretty much kills my movement-free day.  Hours later, the sheets have been replaced, the bed is made.  Before Ron even had a chance to ask, I had to spill my guts about the seltzer.

After all that, his response was:

That mattress hurts my back.  We should replace it .

Roll credits.

And yes, the cat was all up in my grill when I pulled the comforter inside, dragged it down the halls (through the stuff, and stuff), and up onto the bed to make it.  Again, he was all yeehaaaaa!!! flinging himself on top of the comforter, under it, around it, like a cowboy on a bucking bronco.  Clearly, if he was a good cat, he would have been more sensitive to the fact that Mommy’s back hurt and to knock that crap off!

Seriously, this is just a day in the life of me.  I can’t make this stuff up.

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Church

So, I volunteer at my church on Tuesdays to help with cooking.  It’s funny that I’d volunteer for this because I don’t particularly like cooking.  I do, however, love to talk and that’s what we do while we’re cooking so it works out beautifully.  Actually, that’s not true.  I like cooking, just not on a schedule.  Only when I’m “in the mood”.  Oddly enough, doing it for a cause makes it fun.  Who knew?

Anyway, so this kitchen has utensils and such, but they’re donated and things get misplaced or disappear or fall apart.  Ultimately, a bit of a mish-mash of stuff.  So I decided, after a quick conversation with a fellow volunteer about how awesome ceramic knives are, to go out and buy some knives so I could take one with me.  That way, I always had the right tool for the job.  Seriously, cutting vegetables with a boning knife does not work.
Coolest Knives EverMy husband and I went to Sears and I picked up these super awesome colour- coded knives.

Red is for meat.

Green is for vegetables.

Yellow is for poultry.

Blue is for fish.

Is that not the best???

Get it?  Water is blue,  and fish swim in water, and so it’s like this whole mental connection to the colour.  Brilliant!!!!!

I joke, but seriously, I was really excited about this.   To know me is to understand that little things like colour-coded knives, like flannel or bubble wrap, make my day.


Okay, so somewhere along the line of falling in love with the pricelessness of the color-coding, I somehow neglected to notice that they’re not actually ceramic.  They’re stainless steel.  But they’re colourful!

Anyway, moving on.  So one of the other issues in the kitchen was that the gloves were a “one size fits all” kind of deal, and anyone who has shrimpy hands like I do, knows that one size truly does not fit all.   On the first day helping out, I lopped off the tip of my glove.  I may as well have been wearing mittens.  So I decided to pick some up.  How hard can it be to find food prep gloves?

Uhm, well, apparently pretty hard.  We went to two stores and everything was this One Size Fits All conspiracy.

So I hopped onto Amazon, spent about 45 minutes researching, and found some really awesome gloves that are not latex, fit like a – I’m gonna say it – glove, and can be found in size small.  AND…they’re purple.  Who doesn’t love to rock the purple when you’re preparing food?  Amirite?!

Okay, for the record, none of this has anything to do with the title of the post.  I just wanted to set the stage.

I’m running late and I knew I’d be bringing my knife with me and a set of gloves.  So I threw the gloves in a ziploc bag (why, I don’t know, to keep them together?) and tossed the knife (okay, I didn’t “toss” it, I placed it carefully, sharp side down) in my purse.  I pranced to the car, high on my own brilliance at finding the perfect glove, and made my way to church.

CHiPsAbout fifteen minutes into the drive, I hit bumper-to-bumper traffic.  Ugh.  Always the same spot, too.  Anyway, I’m just rocking out to my iTunes and staring at the vanity license plate in front of me, trying to figure out the wordplay, when a Police Officer on a motorcycle pulls up beside me and looks over.

And then it kind of dawns on me that I have surgical gloves and a brilliant red knife jutting out of my purse.

I know I’m heading to church to chop vegetables, but he doesn’t know that.  I start to freak out a little, wondering what he’s thinking.  Does he think I’m off to hack up someone and dispose of a body?  Is he going to pull me over?  Am I going to end up on the evening news?  Is there a law against carrying a knife in your purse?

You know how someone says things like, “Don’t look” or “Be cool” to you and your natural instinct is to do the opposite?  I start freaking out.  In trying to be oh-so laissez-faire about the whole thing, I just looked guilty.  Luckily, the police officer just glanced, ignored me (and my obvious distress), and scooched through traffic between lanes off into the wild blue yonder.

Crisis averted.

It made for a great story when I got to church.