Tuesday, July 30, 2013

July happened. And a rant.

The kids are in swimming lessons.

We stripped the porch floors and repainted them (I'm going to say "as a family" but in all reality it was 70% Rob, 25% me, and 3% August, 1.5% Jorge, and 0.5% Katie)(We may or may not let certain kids ever enjoy the sunset from the porch).

Work is work-ish meaning I go in and stare at my desk in a sort of dead panic all day and then come home and suddenly think of 140 things I should have done that day and resolve to do better only to turn back into a panic-zombie the next day.  I sort of hate it.  It's a job.  I suspect some day I'll like it again, but today was not the day.  Tomorrow doesn't look promising.  I work best with deadlines and a clear plan; neither of those exist in a real sense right now.

August is potty trained if he wants to be, which he does on some days and definitely does not on other days.  I don't know if the smarter move is to let him lead and just assume he'll decide to do it in a few more weeks or if I should be all "screaming maniac freaked out mommy" at each "accident" (they are "totally on-purposes.")  Knowing his personality, the freaking out won't do a darn thing; life will work itself out just fine. It's definitely the less stressful move for all of us and I don't think we're losing anything valuable.

Speaking of losing or missing, we missed our village "field days" by about an hour and arrived to find them packing up.  (for anyone not in the northeast, this is what everyone else in the country calls a carnival or festival or town picnic).  The kids were devastated.  We may have to plan a trip to another city's events.

I could seriously write a whole list of things I can not understand about this part of the country.  I generally like it here, but there are some major hackle-raisers.

Let's just do that.

1.  "Field Days".  Ugh, no.  Concept: YES.  Name: What?  No.  Unless they actually take place in a field, I suppose, which they do not.

2. Exit numbers on interstates are used sequentially.  What is wrong with you people here!?  Why do you do this?  What on earth makes you think there's a logic to numbering exits sequentially?  In practically every other state, the exit numbers start on one edge of the state (west or south) and are labeled according to their mile marker position relative to that edge.  The first exit in the state is usually something less than 10.  The next one might be exit number 15, and that means it is 5 miles away from exit 10.  Let me explain what NY does.    The first exit is exit #1.  The next one is exit #2.  It may be 1 mile away, it may be 150 miles away.  There's no earthly way of telling from the road because the signs are nearly always just telling you where Rochester or Buffalo or Albany or Canada will be found, with no indication of where the next exit will be. It's completely meaningless information.  And what do you all do when a new ramp gets added?  Or one closes?  It just makes no sense. Stop it.

3. Along those lines, everyone likes to ask what exit you take off the thruway.  I don't know, because the exit numbers are meaningless.  Meaningless.  Why do I care if it's the 47th exit?  I'm not counting them.  When I get to exit #45 I don't think: "Ok, 2 more exits", what I want to know is "ok, 18 more miles"  Or 50.  Or 2.   Could be anything.  I refuse to play along.  I tell people the name of the highway you exit onto or the city/village label on it; nothing else is worth remembering.

There are several others (Italian aisles at the grocery store and the general structure of wine & liquor licensing spring to mind) but honestly, the exit number thing makes me insane.  I want to swing a big bat out the window and knock down every exit sign along every highway while shouting "You are meaningless!"  (I may have rage issues) (I would never do this because I would get bugs in my hair.) (Also, I have terrible aim and would almost surely end up hitting one of the 200 wild turkeys that meander around on the sides of the thruway.)(Also, it sounds exhausting.)


  1. I shouldn't be laughing at your rage issues but this is hysterical. And I agree. Number them by mile markers, people. Mile markers.

    You would (I think) therefore appreciate Utah (and some Idaho) addresses. Most of them are based on a grid system, unless the town was trying to be all non-Utah and gave names to their streets instead of numbers and that just drives me crazy. I know exactly how to find an address like 345 West 700 South or 1372 North 2400 East. If you know your numbers and can use a compass, it is easy to find a place.

    (Also, you have wild turkeys meandering on the sides of the thruway??? Why oh why haven't I come to visit you yet? My kids would be thrilled. There was a Wild Kratts episode about wild turkeys and it is their favorite episode of all.)

  2. Yes. Wild turkeys. And deer, which are a little less fun to see right next to the highway. (Though the baby ones aren't as scary.)

    I have always thought the NY exit marking system was nuts. And Paul thought, at least for a time, that all other states were weird for matching exits to miles.

  3. Rob was, too. He was used to exits meaning nothing. :)