Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Out of Place

At my job, I am very organized and efficient. If a task needs to get done quickly and accurately, I am often called upon to complete said task…and if asked, I am usually able to find needed documents or files at a moment’s notice.

Not so much at home.

Home is where I cut loose, where I walk in and casually throw my coat on the couch and my purse on the living room floor…and then throw my work clothes in a crumpled heap on the bedroom floor whilst I change into my comfy play clothes (which were also previously lying in a crumpled heap on the bedroom floor).

I just don’t really care too much about being neat and organized at home.

Now mind you, I’ve tried to change these bad habits. I’ve bought and read several books on organization and have followed some of the advice—but it always comes back to one simple principle: I just don’t care enough about staying neat and organized at home. At home I just want to RELAX. And somehow hanging up my coat and putting my clothes in their proper places just doesn’t seem like relaxation to me.

And in particular, one of my really bad habits is that I love to put stuff on the floor. Books, magazines, purses, water bottles…you name it, I’ll put it on the floor. I think that somehow my brain looks at the floor and thinks “There’s a big, open, clear space to put my stuff!” It’s that simple. And it really drives Iwanski crazy.

Anyway, one of the problems with being so—I like to call it “carefree”— at home (besides driving my husband nuts) is that when I have something that I really need to do—like send an e-mail to someone or sew a button on my shirt or put chicken in the refrigerator to defrost—I really need to set up a strong reminder for myself to remember to do that task…because otherwise I will totally forget.

Often, I remember these “things to do” when I happen to be working late at my office. So I’ll call home and leave myself a message on our answering machine. Or even better—if Iwanski is home, I’ll ask him to “put something out of place” to remind me to do that task. For example, if he puts our model Blues Brothers car on top of our stove, that helps me to remember that there is something that I need to do. I know, it seems pretty weird—but to me, it’s easier and quicker (not to mention more fun) than writing a note (as if writing a note is that challenging!—whatever)…it works for me.

In the past, Iwanski has put many things out of place for me—like the time that I came home and found his guitar tuner sitting on the back of the toilet. (“What is the guitar tuner doing in the bathroom? Oh yeah…I have to e-mail my Mom.”)

It’s a pretty good system, don’t you think?

So today, while working late, I called Iwanski and asked him to “put something out of place” to remind myself to send a postcard to my Grandma (I send my 95-year-old Grandma a Chicago postcard about once a week or so). Then I promptly forgot about it.

Later tonight, while exercising, I thought about it again and asked Iwanski, “Hey, what did you put out of place for me?”

“Oh, I put that bird identification book on the floor, on your yoga mat,” he replied.

“Oh,” I said. “I didn’t even realize it. It didn’t seem out of place to me.”

“Of course it didn’t!” He laughed. “I forgot, you put everything on the floor!”

We both laughed, and then he continued, “I think that for you, I’d have to put something REALLY big on the floor. I think you’d have to walk in the house and see an Alpaca standing there.”

I laughed harder.

He continued “…And there would need to be a sign around the Alpaca’s neck that says ‘I am out of place.’”

Have I mentioned lately how much I love that man? He is the funniest person I know, and I’m so grateful to have him in my life.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Dukin' It Out

I know, I know, I haven’t blogged in so very long…and you know what? The longer I’ve been away from it, the harder it is to start up again. It’s like I feel like I have to write something really profound or something. But no. I am about to write about some absolutely meaningless crap. I hope you enjoy it!

Lately, just for silliness’s sake, Iwanski and I have been watching episodes of the Dukes of Hazzard. I’m telling you, if you grew up in the early 80’s, there is nothing like watching the Dukes of Hazzard to make you feel like a kid again. Every time we turn it on, I am immediately transported to a Friday night back in 1982, watching Rosco P. Coltrane and Boss Hogg battling it out with the Duke boys. Too freakin’ funny. It was a fun show to grow up with.

I may have written about this before, but when I was a kid, my two good neighborhood friends and I would play the Dukes of Hazzard as we raced around on our bikes. Since there were only three of us – one boy and two girls – we had a very limited cast of characters. The boy, Jeff Flanders, was blonde-haired, so of course he had to be Bo Duke. And then there were us two girls, my best friend Cari and I…and both of us wanted to be Daisy Duke. What to do, what to do? Well, a very simple solution came from our very simple eight-year-old minds – we would be…Daisy One and Daisy Two! I still laugh when I think about that.

Anyway, I’ve realized that even as an adult, the Dukes of Hazzard is still entertaining…especially since Iwanski and I spend half the episodes pausing our Tivo and making fun of the show. We laugh at the fact that in every single freakin’ episode, the Duke boys are always somehow held at gunpoint, and always by just some random evil strangers who just happen to be traveling through good ole’ Hazzard County. And at least once in every episode, Bo and Luke have to dodge barrels or rocks or some kind of huge boulders rolling down a hill right at their car. Oh, and the police just generally look the other way at the fact that the Duke boys act as vigilante crime-solvers and always end up catching the bad guys. In fact, Boss Hogg and his police brigade (Rosco P. Coltrane and Enos—later replaced by Cletus) generally welcome the Duke Boys’ assistance in solving crimes. It’s just assumed that the Duke Boys will catch the bad guys in whatever way they can; no questions asked.

And by the way, the guy who played Boss Hogg (Sorrell Booke) was freakin’ brilliantly funny. I don’t know why I never realized that when I was a kid—I was just too busy hating that character. Now, I think he’s an absolutely amazing actor—completely committed to the part.

I guess the thing that I like best about the show is that even though the good guys always end up in sticky or dangerous situations, through all of it, there’s always this sense of community with the main characters. You know that no matter what, when it really comes down to it, any one of them would do anything to keep the others safe. Yup, the Dukes of Hazzard really shows the love.

And now I’ve written an entire blog post about the Dukes of Hazzard.

Aren’t you just so glad that I’m back to blogging again?