Monday, March 12, 2007


Saturday, we spent most of the day gettin' The Twenty ready for paint. Grinding, sanding the spots I missed, grinding some more... I had to take a couple wheels to one of the body shops, a rare occasion for a Saturday, but at least traffic was fairly light most of the way. The Crab stopped by to see us, and when I got back from Tulsa, the car was sittin' there runnin' and almost ready to be washed.

In chatting about websites, the topic of The Blog came up, along with how I haven't been posting as often as I did in November. While I did have fun with the NaBloPoMo post-every-day in November deal, I kinda wondered if I was crankin' out the crap just to be writing every day. I know deep down that I probably have to stand a little crap just to work out the odds and turn out a good post every now and then, but I guess the bit about ""Ramblings"" did shake my tree ever so slightly.

So... While there is apparently at least one person who was enjoying the ramblings, I still have this itch to cut the crap and just post the interesting stuff.

Sunday Morning, Oops, Afternoon, I was trying to think of what to write about next. Rubbing my hair with shampoo and rackin' my brain tryin' to figure out something fascinating and philosophical just wasn't workin' like it usually does, and I couldn't think of a thing. Nothin' was comin' to me, not a thing; and then I ended up at K-Mart.

We've been runnin' around to all kinds of different places looking for these. Clay's holdin' all three of the ones we found at the K-mart in Sand Springs -- one of the last three remaining K-marts in the Tulsa Metro Area. Like the true obsessive people we are, we've been trying to hoard up all the Matchbox 63 Cadillac Hearses we can get our happy little hands on -- one from a Toys-R-Us, one off Ebay (that I bought because I didn't think we'd ever find a second one) and these three from K-mart. The 63 is a little different bodystyle from my '68, but bein' that small, it's close enough and they're pretty darn cool.

Yesterday afternoon led to a trip East, as in "Hey, we haven't been to thatK-mart yet..." Ah, that K-mart, you know, the one in that part of town. Before the recent fit of Hearse-Hunting, I hadn't been to a K-mart since who-knows-when. It was like stepping back in time -- back to when CD's were rare & usually just "greatest hits," Cassette Tapes were plentifully available, along with those tabletop cassette recorders like we had in the "media center" in elementary school. This K-mart was no different -- and 'twas also a fascinating people-watching opportunity.

Rounding the corner from the lawn & garden department into the toy car aisle where Clay was standing, it was all I could do to keep from laughing out loud as my mind flashed back to a senseless yet unforgettable moment from my last Christmas break as a highschool kid...

I don't remember where we'd been, but we were coming toward downtown Tulsa on I-244 in Andy's ol' grey Monte Carlo -- the one I'd love to have for a parts-car right about now. I was sittin' in the middle of the front seat, between Andy and his roommate, who was just about as agitated as he could be. It was the first time I'd ever heard the phrase, and I'm sure My Mom would want to smack all three of us if she knew how it's stayed with me all these years -- "Get me home, man, I got a damn turtle-head pokin' out." Poor Randy had to shit so bad, but just couldn't stand the thought of any of the half-dozen or so QuickTrips and other stores we'd passed along the way. "Get me to the house, I gotta shit!"

Between what I saw in K-mart and the vivid memory of my then-boyfriend-now-good-buddy's voice making fun of his friend way back when, it's really a stroke of luck that I didn't just bust out gigglin' like an idiot and get thrown outta the place.

It's not that I caught somebody takin' a shit in the lawn & garden department; it's just that the first thing I could think of was "Get me home, man, I gotta blog!"

Heh... You didn't really think that... Naaaahhhh, surely not... Oh, wait, we are talkin' about that part of town...


In the lawn & garden area, the folks who run K-mart have put together a display model of one of their patio furniture sets, with a glass-topped table and six or eight chairs under a nice little matching canvas canopy with mosquito net sides tied to the corner posts with matching ribbon.

Amid the common "kid noise," I happened to walk by as a Mom was telling her kids to "Just sit down and shut up, I'll be back in just another minute." The kids, two little girls with matching hair-do's, and a boy a little older, were sitting at the patio table. As I got closer, I could see why the girls were loud and the boy was not. I know I'm a bad guesser when it comes to ages, but I'd say the little girls were probably around kindergarten-age, and then boy was a little older, maybe fifth grade or so; I'm not sure, but I'd guess by their size they'd be old enough to know better. Apparently I'm a bad guesser when it comes to "old enough to know better" too, since I was raised by a Mom who insisted on being absolutely sure that all of her kids did know better...

The two little girls were loud and unruly, but the boy was quite occupied. On the table in front of him was a vividly bright, partially colored coloring book and a big box of Crayola Crayons; open from the box-top, not the traditional perforations.

Remember that first-day-of-school feeling? Remember that magical smell that only comes around once a year? Remember what it was like to crack that diagonal perforation around the lid of a brand-new-untouched box of Crayola Crayons? I vividly remember carefully breaking each little sliver of thin cardboard that held the big square lid sealed and then folding back the cover to reveal four stadium-style rows of perfectly molded points of every imaginable color from ordinary ones like red or blue to the wildest in-betweens of puce, magenta, and peach, and the amazing white Crayola that just wouldn't really make a mark on anything, even colored construction paper; but the white one was still special because it was only available in those big boxes. I remember that feeling of knowing that there was potential in that box, all sorts of creativity just waiting to be released by my own hands; and I also vividly remember knowing that they'd only look like that this one time, all those perfect little points would be gone in no time because no matter how carefully you color with them, those points never, ever stay that way. You can try to sharpen 'em, but they'll still never be the same because they're only brand new once.

I'd just about bet that as soon as the mom was finished up with her shopping and ready to load 'em up to head home, she's not going to drop that coloring book and box of crayons into her shopping basket on her way tot he check-out. I'm sure that's why it was open from the top flap instead of from the perforations. It wouldn't surprise me at all if the whole mess didn't get left on that patio table without a thought; or if it did all get picked up, it probably ended up getting left in the toy department, or stuffed in behind something like a rack of underwear or shoes, or behind a television in the electronics department. Just like motor oil in the greeting card aisle...

Somewhere a few months from now, a good kid who's excited about going back to school will probably pick up that big box of Crayola Crayons along with their brand-new notebooks and pencils and fresh bottle of glue and put it all in their new backpack to head out for the first day of school. In some elementary school, some good kid will be disappointed because the crayons in that box had already been colored with; but will they be able to talk mom and dad into returning the box to the store? If the kid is able to convince his or her parents that it's not just a scam to get the brand-new ones again, will the kid and parents be able to convince the person at the K-mart service desk that they really did get them from the store that way, especially if the unsuspecting good kid has already broken that perforated seal?

Parkin' your kids at the patio furniture display and tellin' 'em to read a book or something is almost reasonable, if you've got well-behaved kids who'll sit there and just look at a book; but let's face it, lettin' 'em tear into a box of crayons (hey, be careful not to tear up that box, we've gotta put those back) and start a coloring book in the middle of a store is a low-down dirty thing to do. Teaching kids how to make good use of resources is a great thing; but letting kids grow up thinkin' the whole entire K-mart store is just sittin' there bein' all theirs and free to use as they please is just not a good idea.

And that's my two-cents-worth of parenting advice for the day.

Oh, and a little more advice -- if you're buying a big box of crayons at K-mart, open that top flap and take a little peek to make sure they're not used.

More later. _\,,/



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