August 22nd, 2006

msauvage purple

Do not ask for whom the flaming chicken clucks

Wrote some last night--I had to push a little bit to keep going, which says to me that it wasn't a hypomanic episode or anything. Which is kind of encouraging, as it says that I can write whether I'm having moodswings or not. I'm going to start going on Lamictal sometime later this week, I think, so that'll be interesting.

The Flaming Chicken of Doom! I wasn't making it up!

Kevin Federline debuts his dope rhymes on the Teen Choice Awards. I think the swooping camerawork is supposed to distract us from how utterly whitebread he is. Also, I don't know what's up with all the fire, but it's a lot funnier if you imagine the Flaming Vendetta Chicken up there.

Thousands sing at "Idol" trial in Alabama: "More than 8,000 'American Idol' hopefuls auditioned for the hit talent show in Birmingham, Ala., on Monday, hoping to follow in the footsteps of two previous winners who hail from the southern city. Would-be pop stars from states as far flung as Virginia, Michigan and California attempted to sway producers in brief auditions. Monday's try-out was part of a series of nationwide events. Reigning champ Taylor Hicks comes from Birmingham, as does Ruben Studdard, winner of the show's second season in 2003." Which is not even to mention runner-up Bo Bice, who's been more successful so far than both of them put together. Once again: Alabama, the Center of the Universe. I'm not saying we deserve it; I'm just saying that we are.

A clip from Kids Incorporated that doesn't make a damn bit of sense. All I know is, my sister kept bombarding me with YouTube links last night, because she used to be obsessed with the show, and I put my foot down when she said there was a clip of them doing "Get into the Groove" ("Oh, hell no"). But she did make me watch this one. I know I saw Mario Lopez in there, and Sister Girl says that the little blonde in the stripes is Fergie. Yes, "Fergie of the Black-Eyed Peas" Fergie.

And then there's this, possibly explaining why Fergie turned out the way she did. As someone on Snarkfest noted, "No wonder she wets herself."

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Phone calls you don't want to get

I pick up the landline in the den when I see my mother's cell number on the caller ID. "I've been trying to call you," my mother says.

"I was outside with the dogs," I say. I actually still have their leashes in my hand, and a paper towel underfoot from trying to soak up another one of Meko's accidents.

"I've been trying to call you for an hour," my mother says. She sounds kind of tired-angry. "Your phone must be dead."

"Yeah, it ran all the way down while Sister Girl had my charger--she gave it back to me last night, though, so it's recharging now."

"She's with me. She wants to tell you something."

This might sound kind of ominous to you, but she does this all the time. "No, give me the phone, I want to tell her." That kind of thing.

"Hey," Sister Girl says. "I'm in the emergency room."


"I got hit by a car."

"Ohhhhh my God. Were you in a car?"

"Yeah, yeah." Sister Girl just sounds plain tired. I can't hear what she says because the connection keeps fuzzing in and out, but I can tell that she's laughing. "I know I'm laughing, you [fizz fizz] I'm crazy, that's just how I [fizz fizz] with things." I dunno, I might understand that better than you think. "This seventy-eight-year-old guy with an expired [fizz fizz]--"

"Ohhhhh my God--"

"--was going to the doctor--you can imagine, he shouldn't have been [fizz fizz] in the first place--decided he just wanted to make a left turn all of a sudden [fizz fizz] left side of my car is gone."

"Ohhhhh my God."

"I hit my head--not hard, but you know, the buttons [fizz fizz] cap--" She was driving home from her 5 am-1 pm shift at Panera, I assume, and she has these little buttons they make her wear on her uniform cap to show that she's, like, instrument-rated for paninis or fully trained in the arts of salad or whatever. "I'm pretty sure they've taken his license away [fizz fizz fizzzzzzz fizz]--"

"I can't hear you at all now--"

"I [fizz fizz], we're going to be here for a while. Did you know that Mom works for the police now?"

"Yeah, I did." Sister Girl's got such an I'm a Pastry Chef and I'm Okay schedule (she learns all night and she works all day) that I guess she hasn't been around to hear Mom's many, many stories of the university police department and its benefits-related escapades. (You think I'm being facetious, but I'm really, really not. I can't really get into it because it's not even my confidence to violate, but... "they finally found him in New Orleans" was uttered at one point.) I can't tell what Sister Girl's saying now at all, but if I had to guess, I'd say that it involves how Mom's police connections are going to... something. I don't know. It's pretty clearly Mr. Magoo's fault for making a random (and illegal? I'm not sure of the exact details) left turn and annihilating what sounds like the driver's side of my sister's car. I don't know that we need superelite connections to establish that. I'm more concerned about the insurance and fixing and/or replacing the car and, you know, the possible damage to my sister's brain.

"So what I'm saying is," she concludes, "I'm not gonna be home for a while. You can go lock the door back."

ETA: I should add, she seemed to indicate that the man was driving himself because there wasn't anyone else to take him to the doctor. Also, she said something about "traveler's insurance." I actually feel really bad for the guy--I'm sure he didn't mean to hurt anyone, and he probably feels terrible now. Also, she says she's not bleeding or anything.

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msauvage purple

It's okay to laugh. No, really

Okay, Sister Girl is home now, and I've gotten a bit more of the story:

Sister Girl is on her way back from a Panera catering delivery at the Sparks Building on Sixth Avenue; she has a green light and is proceeding forward as normal when suddenly Mr. Magoo just pulls across--either to or from 22nd Street, I forget which one. He does actually hit her driver's side door, and she doesn't see him coming at all, probably because she wasn't expecting someone to make a rogue left turn on a red light. She hits her head on the Leet Panera Skillz buttons, etc., as described previously. So she gets out, and she says she was determined not to cry, because she figured that if she started she'd never stop. The old man is apparently seventy-eight years old and on his way to the Kirkland Clinic because no one else can or will take him. I now know his real first name, and clearly, we're not going to use it here, but suffice it to say that it's as perfect an old man name as you've ever heard. So he starts trying to convince Sister Girl that they can just exchange insurance information and not get the police involved, because they might take his license away. My sister, who is sort of woozy from the HEAD TRAUMA, decides she's going to let Mom play bad cop, since the car's in Mom's name anyway. My mother is all of two blocks away, so she arrives and the old man gets to work trying to convince her, which--good luck with that, buddy. Eventually it comes out that he doesn't even have a license because, technically, it's expired, and then the words "Because if the police get involved, blame is going to get assigned. I mean, the damage is minimal--she can drive that car home" come out of his mouth. The old man turns around and kicks his Bumper of Destruction back into place. Mom looks back over at my sister's car and takes note of the engine hanging out.

My mother pulls out her work cell and says, "Hi, I'd like some officers down here." 

(She does benefits for pretty much everyone at the university except the professors and researchers. Which doesn't sound like a lot of people, until you realize that she's got all the coaches, security guards, and campus police [in whose jurisdiction they were just barely still in at this time], among others. I should clarify--I wasn't making a lot of sense when I wrote the previous entry, but the "we found him in New Orleans" guy was one of the stories my mother would come home and tell. He has nothing to do with the accident today. The old man today, as you can see, stopped and did not have to be chased.)

So then they call Panera, so after about half an hour they've got my sister's boss and three cops (or five to six, depending on whose account you believe, my sister's or my mother's. Strangely, it's my mother who insists there were more cops. Apparently the university police are much like the Men in Black of old, in that they move in mysterious ways and numbers) down there, and the old man is pretty squarely outnumbered. As a side note, my mother said that she had a hard time being too angry with him, because she kept thinking of her own father--my sainted grandfather--who died about five years ago. He never hit any twenty-year-old delivery drivers while making illegal left turns, but he once told his doctor that he could drive himself to the hospital from the doctor's office just fine, and the doctor said, "No, you can't, because you're having a heart attack." Bless.

Anyway. I don't want to sound overly materialistic here, but once I had heard from my sister's own mouth that she wasn't bleeding, maimed or dead, I started worrying about the damage to the car. Apparently the driver's door was crushed in, the front left side of the car was no longer there, and you could not, in fact, drive that car home. Her shift starts at five am, so it's not like she's going to be able to get a ride from anyone, and she's been (legitimately) sick a good bit lately, so I was afraid that Panera wasn't going to be real happy about her needing more time off work, either. Well, her boss says not to worry--per company policy, probably because they have the delivery drivers use their own cars, it's now a worker's comp issue and Panera will pay for all car repairs and any medical bills. Praised be the Jesus, saith I.

So now it's on to the hospital. I don't know what happened back at the scene with the old man after that, but I'm sure I'll hear updates tomorrow. In the emergency room, my sister is attended by... the woman who broke up my parents' marriage. I'm telling you, people, I can't make this shit up. To say that my parents' divorce was "acrimonious" doesn't really cover it, although to say "it involved felony insurance fraud charges" comes a little closer. So: awkward. Dr. Homewrecker says, somewhat abashed, "If you'd rather me step down and have someone else look at [Sister Girl]...," and my mother just says, "Look, it doesn't matter. Go for it." I haven't seen my father in about eight years--since my parents broke up, basically--but my sister's had dinner over there with him and Dr. Homewrecker a few times, so she at least knows the woman.

Sister Girl gets settled into a hospital room for a four-hour stay. ("Shit," she says later, "it's not like we're paying for it.") She tells me over takeout tonight that she watched The Cosby Show and had a CAT scan, the latter administered by a technician named Rocky Brazil. If he doesn't moonlight as a boxer or a rock star, I say that's a perfectly awesome name going to waste. My sister is inexplicably disappointed that she gets discharged before she gets to eat hospital food for dinner, which was when I started to worry that she really had sustained brain damage, but apparently she got off light with simple "head trauma," which is double less ungood than a concussion. Dr. Homewrecker prescribed some painkillers for her, and now she's home. She gets at least one day off work, maybe two, and probably a rental car for when she does go back. Other than the fact that her head's probably going to hurt like a motherfuck tomorrow, I'm pretty sure she got through this with the luck of the angels.

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