I've contributed to perhaps the best humor compilation I've ever read. Available now on Amazon!

My second chapbook, "The Second Book of Pearl: The Cats" is now available as either a paper chapbook or as a downloadable item. See below for the Pay Pal link or click on its cover just to the right of the newest blog post to download to your Kindle, iPad, or Nook. Just $3.99 for inspired tales of gin, gambling addiction and inter-feline betrayal.

My first chapbook, I Was Raised to be A Lert is in its third printing and is available both via the PayPal link below and on smashwords! Order one? Download one? It's all for you, baby!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

I Really Gotta Start Paying More Attention

My book "The Second Book of Pearl:  The Cats" became available yesterday.  Why not buy a couple?!  Tales of mystery, of cats with dental problems and gambling addictions, tales of love, hope, and gin and tonics.  And cheap?!  So cheap!  Eight American dollars buys you a bit of real estate just inside my head.  Join me in my head, won't you?   Where it's all warm and comfy?  See the PayPal link to the right, there, or send me an e-mail and we'll get you a book.  

(And yes, I said “seven American dollars” yesterday but then realized that after printing and mailing it left me with 38 cents. Ha!  Stay in school, kids!)  


Steph has been researching vacuums. The Dyson, to be precise.

“I could get the DC25 Animal with the extra attachment. I don’t need the animal-hair-removal attachment, really, but it’s $50 extra at every place I go except for Sears, where it’s $7 less than the one without the attachment. Isn't that weird? I just don’t get it.”

Steph takes a breath. I take another drink.

I am listening intently. It may be the three Fox Barrels talking, or more accurately it’s probably the former court reporter in me, but I’m wondering if, with a little focus, Steph could challenge the existing speech-speed record.

Visions of Steph on the Bonneville Salt Flats attempting the land-speech record make me smile. She’s quite slender, I think to myself, and would look awesome in a one-piece zip-up, holding a helmet and flashing those straight white teeth at the camera...

“I mean, it’s not like I need the attachment on the Animal, but why not, if it’s going to cost basically the same, you know what I mean?”

Steph refills her wine glass from the box in the fridge and on the way back to the table begins a discourse on the weight of the available models. She wonders if I, as a Dyson owner, have had trouble with the weight and maneuverability of the machine. Raised with a canister Electrolux with the aerodynamics of a bison, I shrug, smile, and take another drink.

My mind drifts as she speaks to the parts and warranty aspects of the machine.

I wonder semi-drunkenly if I should try this myself, approaching the physical world with a little more scrutiny, a little more analysis.

I excuse myself to go to the bathroom and am immediately struck with an example of Things I Should Be Paying Attention To But Don’t.

Let me preface this by saying that the bathroom at Kathy’s house is one with which I am quite familiar. Parties on the deck in the summer, cribbage at the dining room table in the winter, I know this place.

And yet…

There are five light switches in the downstairs bathroom: one is a light, one is a fan – and then, well, I think one is for a microwave, maybe next door; and one I believe may operate a camera somewhere…

First I turn on the fan. BBBBBBBBBBERRRRRRRR. I turn it off. I flip another switch and nothing happens.  Must be the microwave. I accidentally flip two switches at the same time and the light and the fan go on. I accidentally turn the light off and am left in the dark with the fan going.

Steph has thoroughly researched and bought the vacuum of her dreams.

I have been defeated by a light switch – a clever light switch, but still a light switch.

I give up and use the bathroom in the dark.

23 comments:

Shelly said...

Did you deliberately add your preface to today's post because it goes with the topic? Because I'm so there with you.

I, who in the store with my husband yesterday, absent mindedly put a package of rolls in the basket I thought he was pushing...not his basket, not my husband.

mybabyjohn/Delores said...

It's the simple things thst get us every time.

Rosemary Nickerson said...

I love my Dyson! I just find it SO NOISEY, LOUD, HARD ON THE EARS. After my Meille, which was very good, light, and very quiet, but too expensive to replace, I guess the Dyson will do. Love can sometimes be a thing of convenience.
Rosemary

Leenie said...

HOW can we of the right brain be aware of our surroundings when there are so many details? I'm going for the big picture, the entire view. If this results in missing out on knowing how to open venetian blinds without a fight or what all those buttons are for on my dishwasher---so be it.

By the way, one of those switches in Kathy's house turns of the lights in MY bathroom. So leave it ALONE.

bill lisleman said...

a five switch option - are you sure it's not drunken dizziness playing tricks on you. Speed talkers - drive me nuts since I'm a slow talker. The slow talking didn't help me at all when I tried to sell vacuums long ago.

vanilla said...

One: is the light
Two: is the fan
Three: is the camera, hope it won't pan.

Geo. said...

Five switches? Be careful. I believe one of them alerts the mother-ship that the outpost has caught a human.

jenny_o said...

I can't even get the two switches in my bathroom figured out. If I'm tired, I always, always turn on the fan instead of the light. I'm sure the electrician put them in non-logical order so he could have something to giggle about in his spare time.

Five switches? I'd be looney inside of a week.

fishducky said...

Does LEENIE have a blog? All I found when I clicked on her was basically a blank page. She leaves some pretty funny comments!!

Pearl said...

fishducky! Leenie's blog: http://bonkersycarax.blogspot.com/

She's funny, and better yet, she's a talented artist. I bought a water color raven from her and I LOVE it.

Mich said...

I will never

EVER

understand why anyone would design their bathroom to have so many light switches. Because the one for the lights is always the last one you try. Universal Rule.

xo

The Elephant's Child said...

Your second book was something I ordered yesterday as a present for myself. I worried about the cost of the postage then - so please, contact me. I am happy to pay more.
I love my Dyson, and I am constantly befuddled by the switches in our bathroom. Sigh.

Eva Gallant said...

Who the heck needs 5 switches in their bathroom????

Kana said...

Presenting a human with 5 light switches in a room that so many only turn to in crisis is an invitation to seriously soiled floors...I wonder if her vaccum comes with an attachment for THAT.

Nessa Roo said...

I totally understand about needing to pay more attention to things. The switch that I once thought was the exhaust fan in our bathroom turns out to be a air deodorizer that simply pushes air through some kind of magical scented filter which I am supposed to replace every six months. They should have mentioned it in the rental contract, I've lived here more than a year, and I'm just discovering this.

Linda O'Connell said...

I'd put my daughter up against your Steph any day. I'm always telling her to slow down because the friction from fast talking is going to ignite her lips.

Gigi said...

Light switches are going to be the death of me. We have one (of four) that apparently only powers one wall of outlets. I had to tape that one so Hubby would quit turning of the alarm clock!

Now the house before this one? I'm pretty sure some of those switches controlled the space shuttle.

Juli said...

I spent two hours and $40 putting a new light in my bathroom. Only to go up in the attic and realize that the power has been cut years ago to that particular outlet.

*sigh*

But it looks nice...

esbboston said...

I own a Dyson with Animal in its name, but I don't remember the number ... Let me check (it is not here at the moment) ... I didn't go back and add the Dyson info into my vacuum cleaner story Kitty Kills Cleaner. But model number 25 sounds about right. It is a wonderful machine. Oh! I found it in a different blog post, A Story About N0thing, yes, it is a DC25 Animal. (The speLLing is tricky. The word N0thing has a zero instead of the letter O)

Diane Tolley said...

I have one three-way switch that my Husby installed. Turn it on on this end, nothing happens. Run to the other end and flip that switch.
Again nothing.
Run back to the first and flip. Still nothing.
Run to the other end and this time LEAVE that switch on.
Then back to the first switch and flip. Hooray! Lights.
We may live in the dark, but we're fit!!!

Rose L said...

LOL I can just picture you playing with those switches.

River said...

My daughter is a speed talker, she is fond of telling people they need to learn to listen faster.
I think Steph should get the Dyson with the animal hair attachment, she never knows if some day someone might gift her a kitty.
I have a Hoover.
It sucks.
As it should.

That gentleman's lady said...

A new book! Congratulations, friend!

I too, am always defeated by light switches.

And keys. I still fumble for the correct front door key :D