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I Think I’ll Beat My Dirty Laundry Down by the River

Now why does that title make me think of Chris Farley?  This is a rather random post to detail my cosmic fucking of two days ago when I tried to simply purchase a new washing machine online.

[Throat Clearing–to be dramatic and also because I have a cold]

To begin this post, I’ll take it from the top and recommend that no one ever purchase a Kenmore Oasis Washing machine from Sears (or ANYTHING from Sears, for that matter).  That tremendous, hulking POS has been limping along for the five years since we purchased it.  And that is even after we paid to install a brand new mother (fucker) board exactly one day (give or take) after the one year warranty expired.

So, after that metal turd refused to turn off the other day (related to some imaginary suds it couldn’t seem to rinse off) and it smelled of burning plastic, we finally decided it was time.  That was Thursday.  On Saturday, my old man was stressing about life, in general, and the ginormous to-do list he had, in particular.  I, being the kind-hearted person that I am (and also one who didn’t want to hear his shit) decided to handle the washing machine purchase all on my own.

Now, hubby’s pal had given him a 10% off coupon to Lowe’s, so we had determined that we would buy one from there.  Basically, anything but Sears was the plan, but the price was right…

And I was going to do it online because that’s how I shop.  No lines.  No annoying sales people.  No dragging kids with…you get my drift.  That’s how I roll.

So, I hop online and read reviews and pick a machine without too much searching.  Hell, I hemmed and hawed and scouted for days for the last hunk of junk–the seat of my pants seemed the way to go, here.  Kinda like going with your first gut instinct on a test question you’re unsure about.  It’s usually right, right?

Anyway, I instant message a customer service person to ensure that the delivery guys will take the smoking crap-box from Sears.  The uber-polite Wesley I contacted told me they would.  And would I like him to call in the order for me?  No, thanks, I say.  I want to shop around a little.

After a bit more surfing, I threw a front door lock and handle in my cart (since we could use a new one).  It was sort of like grabbing a pack of gum when you’re checking out at the grocery store.  Sure, I could use one of those.  It’s on sale with my coupon and dammit, gum is delicious.

Well, I had nearly placed my order when I was disturbed by a cranky husband.  I got up to slam some dishes around (always good to be by the butcher-block when you want to look threatening).  After I did about ten minutes of random angry cleaning, I realized I must complete that order so we can soon wash some of our laundry that is threatening to take over the world.

I go to complete the process.

The website informs me, in effect, that even home maintenance sites need work on occasion…ha ha, so clever.  Try again later, sucker!

Fuck me!

But, all isn’t lost.  I put the two items in my cart again and try to check out.  The website tells me that the store I originally chose no longer has my washer and I must pick another location.  Fine.  I do that.  Check out once more and this time, SUCCESS!

Hell, yeah!  That felt good.  So I go to my email account to make sure I got a receipt, and lo and behold I find not one, but two receipts.

Fuck me again!

I call customer service.  Thankfully, I don’t wait too long on hold.  The lovely Southern drawl-rockin’ lady listens to my problem and kindly cancels the second order.  While I’m talking to her my phone beeps and it’s the first store.  Calling to confirm, I’m sure, as I was told they would.  I don’t click over, of course.  I listen to the message after I’m done straightening this cluster-fuck up with Scarlet O’Hara.

Here is the message: “This is the B_____Lowe’s calling to inform you that we only have two display models of the washer you ordered, so we can’t send you one.  You’ll have to order from the W_______Lowe’s.”

Now I’m starting to lose it just a little.  I may have shouted some expletives (at a safe distance from my children’s ears, of course).  I just cancelled an order from the freakin’ W Lowe’s!

I call the woman back and she tells me that online shopping is not always the best bet.  Chuckle.  Sorry!  Also, she cancelled the order from her end.

Back on the ever-lovin’ Lowe’s website I go.  I put the fuckin’ machine in my cart AGAIN only to find it isn’t available at B or W Lowes now, and I have to go with P.  I check out and now my 10% off won’t work because the coupon code police have caught up with me and I used that 10% off to save a hefty $6.66 on my pack of gum.

Now I’m making noises that aren’t really human and my kids are clearing the area because things are looking ugly and their mom is about to sprout tentacles or something.

I call customer service and wait…and wait… and wait.  I try different numbers to get any operator.  Once I sink my claws in, I won’t let go and SOMEONE will fix this BS.  I consider pressing numero dos para Espanol, but I’ll only tell the operator to come and pick up his drunken whore of a mother and wash his crab-infested pubic hair before I pay him for sex.  My Spanish is pretty rusty.  Or maybe I’ll just do it on purpose and blame it on rusty Spanish because now I’m definitely tearing up as I wait…and wait…and listen to one hit wonders from ten years ago coming to me from somewhere under the Bible belt.

Finally I hang up and go back online and type a two paragraph explanation as to why I will probably be found wandering naked in Times Square with a severed limb cradled like a baby in one arm and a bottle of Tide in the other.  Before I hit send I copy it.

Yeah, I’m on to you now, Oh Shitastic Hand I’ve Been Dealt for the Day.

I then press send and the computer is all “SORRY!  We had a glitch!! 🙂  Rainbows and smiles while we cram it up there a little higher!  Shop at Lowes!  Tell your friends!”

And I’m all “TOUCHE, Cock sucker!” and I paste and send again!   Can you feel that, Lowes?  Cause I just stuck it back to you right there.  HAH!  It was a kind of hollow victory but I was riding a series of Lowe’s (get it, lows?).

And then, glory be, it works!  Because I caught fate blatantly fucking with me and when you stare that bitch down, she turns tale and finds someone else who isn’t paying attention, and needs a new lawnmower.

And who should respond to my IM?  Why, the delightful Wesley, who offered to complete my purchase two hours ago.  I love irony.  Wesley smoothed it all over just as fine as you please.  He called me up to finalize the payment details and of course he was a peaches and cream with his velvet Southern drawl.  And he made my 10% off work like magic.

And that, folks, is that.  Until Sunday, when we got a call saying it would be delivered between 1 and 3.  Wesley told me Monday, I informed the woman when I called back to confirm.  Nope.  Sunday.  So my hubby stayed home from our daughter’s piano recital to receive the machine that never came.  It was probably one of my cancelled washers.  Tee Hee.

Well, for the happy ending, my cool new washer came today.  It is whisper quiet like the breeze through the magnolia trees in Wesley’s back yard.  I’ve washed two loads already, and I am nowhere near caught up.

So that’s it, until it starts acting up.  Now come get your mother.  Yo tengo mucho ropa sucia para limpiar y ella huele como un pescado viejo.


Sometimes it’s Better to Shut Up

Today I took the smallest fruit of my loins to a kiddy soccer class.  We went once before, and we have a couple of friends and acquaintances in the class.  Normally, I don’t do many programs with the kids.  I just don’t want to have to get up and get moving every single day for, say kiddy soccer.  Library we do, because, duh; it’s books.  No one in my house is going to succeed or fail in life based on whether or not they did a four-year-old sport.  Reading?  I could see that being important down the road.   

But anyhoo, once we arrived, I signed us up for the next fútbol session.  My friends told me to.  I’m an easy mark for peer pressure.  Could be the sucker tattoo on my forehead.

 

So, to get to the ever-loving point of my post, I notice a woman (obviously a parent, sitting on the bleachers) whom I had met once before.  Now, the once before was at a women’s night out with a friend (who has since moved, we’ll call her Pammy).  Pammy invited me out with three other women from her church group.  Now Pammy (not an ex-friend, just to be clear–she moved, but she still tolerates my shit) asked me along in a “you need to get out and should totally come with us–my friends will love you” kind of moment.  I was probably complaining about how the meaning of Mother’s Day has gone the way of the Dodo and she took pity on me.

 

As I recall, it was Mother’s Day two years ago, and I was pissed at my husband for going for a near-half-marathon run for a couple of hours on the day that was supposed to be mine.  Now, all of you mothers out there who love to spend your one day a year with your kids/family–that is truly sterling.  For you.  Me?  I think that Mother’s Day is the one day a year that I should get to pretend I’m not a mother.  That’s a happy Mom’s Day in the Vale household.

 

So anyway, there I was, seething, throwing back Jack Daniel’s, and chopping down an eight-inch-thick tree that looked at me the wrong way.  My old man had gone out running and then showered for an additional hour.  I don’t call him Pretty Boy Vale for nothing–the guy requires way more prep time than I do.

 

Well, I offed that damn tree and may or may not have showered after.  Let’s say, for the sake of the story that I did, in fact, at least rinse the important parts before getting dressed and meeting the ladies out for pizza and beer.

 

Now, I already had a lovely little buzz on before arriving at the set location.  Let’s also say, for the sake of this story, that I was carpooling with Pammy. 

 

So Pammy makes the intros, hands shaking all around.  The waitress comes over to our pretentious, beat nick couches and I order a beer.  I believe approximately 2.5 of the other women present also had a beer.  One beer.  We eat pizza, I have another beer, meanwhile regaling everyone with the tales of my crappy Mother’s Day and showing off my tree-slaying guns.  I get stuck sitting next to a mousy little woman who didn’t have much to say, and with whom it was quite evident I had absolutely nothing in common.  Fine.  We made it work.  I was drunk and entertaining.  Everything was rainbows and mango hot sauce.  I completed my Mother’s Day binge with a final glass of Jack, more to shock and appall the church ladies than anything else.

 

When I spoke with Pammy the next day, worried I had made a drunken spectacle of myself; she assured me that everyone thought I was a lot of fun and simply blowing off some steam after a bad day.

 

Well, I am.  And I did.

 

Sooooo, back to soccer today.  I see the mousy woman I sat next to that night.  “Shit,” I think, after I figure out how I know her, “if she looks at me, I should say ‘hi’ so I don’t look rude.”  Cue the next eye lock.

 

“Hey!  How are you?”  I say. 

 

I’m sitting on the floor, mind you, because there was no more bleacher space by the time I arrived late, so, essentially, I am on display for every parent present.  Yippee!

 

The mouse woman looks at me curiously.  Now, just to note, she doesn’t look behind her to see if I am perhaps lazy-eyed and am speaking with someone over her shoulder.  But she doesn’t reply at all, either.  Knows I’m addressing her, and just looks at me like I’m an idiot.

Everyone else thinks I’m an idiot too.  I can see it as they look back and forth between us.

“I met you at that girls’ night out,” I say.  “At the fancy pizza place.”  I look to my BFF for a little help, let’s call her Lefty. 

“Flat Bread?”  Says Lefty.  She’s my go-to person when I draw a blank on people and place names.  I can say, “You know that guy, who was in that movie with the chick–oh what’s her name–who was in the movie with that guy, you know, ‘the two yutes’ movie?”  And she’ll be like “Mickey Rourke?”  And I’ll lick her ear.  She’s great at that game.

 

Anyway, Steph, I mean Lefty says “Flatbread?”  And I’m all, “YES!”  And another girl who I feel doesn’t like me all that much snickers “Flatbread is fancy pizza?”  And I’m thinking, “hipster couches and large pies that are pushing $30 a pop for their all-natural ingredients?  Yeah, that’s fancy pizza.”  She is not good at my mind-reading game.

 

So then Mousy looks down her glasses at me because maybe that will help her better recognize my fairly distinctive mug.  I start listing names of people who were there, talking about the tree I chopped down, and spiral out in a disbelieving, “I was drunk as a skunk and I remember you.”  You could almost hear a pin drop despite twenty screaming Jr. Pelés in the background.  She’s just shaking her head saying, “I’m sorry.”

 

Lefty’s parents were there, visiting from out of state.  She told me that when they got in the car to leave her dad said, “Did Kimber say she was drunk?”

 

In hindsight, I should have powered through.  Stood up and yelled, “What?  None of you here booze it up on occasion??!!!  Well, then, more for me!”  Then I should have grabbed someone’s Vitamin Water and chugged it, just to prove some non-existent point.  But you know what they say about hindsight.  It’s a mother fucker.  Maybe I should have gone with my gut and pretended that I didn’t recognize the woman.

That’s what Lefty would have done.  I need a bracelet or bumper sticker that says W.W.L.D.? 

All I know is I can’t wait to go back for more soccer shenanigans now that I’ve signed my name in blood.  Should be a great eleven weeks.

 

Think I’ll start bringing my Elvis flask.  For the purposes of this story, I would carpool.


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