Ya, you betcha

I had to get a cane. My knee has turned into rice krispies. Snap, Crackle and Pop. That’s what happens, when you get elderly. So what’s next?

They claim that memory goes. Short term memory. You can remember stuff that happened 30 years ago, but not what you had for dinner last night. Geez. I didn’t have dinner last night. I had 4 beers and forgot to eat.

Looking back, 30 years ago, does anyone really care what happened? That was in 1980. Well, I can recall living in Nebraska, and hearing the tornado sirens going off frequently. And I would high tail it for the first floor, with a 6 pack and a carton of cigs. I lived in an apartment. And whenever the tenants came in, I would have to move off the stairs to let them by. They didn’t seem to care if the sirens were howling.

The tornado never did get me. At least I don’t think it did. I drank too many beers on those stairs to really care…. Or remember.

I really didn’t like Nebraska. It was land locked. No lakes. Well, they had a man made lake. Or that’s what they called it. I would take a drive up there and see people paddle boating around that little so called lake and laugh. You see, I came from Minnesota. We didn’t have to make our own lakes. They were just there.

Then I moved to New Jersey. Don’t ask me why. In Nebraska, they called it moving out East. Well, at least New Jersey had trees. I was so happy to see the trees, that I would tell everyone, “Wow! Look at the trees.” They thought I was nuts, back then, in New Jersey. They didn’t realize that I had lived in a state with corn fields and cows. Trees were cut down to allow for more farm land.

After a few years in New Jersey, I realized that to live there, you had to be either rich or nuts. So I moved back to Minnesota. But it was too damn cold. I moved to Iowa, and guess what? The trees were gone and the tornadoes were back. So I moved to Pennsylvania. And now my knee is shot.

Now, I have a cane. No more tornadoes. No more brutal cold weather. But I can’t understand a word these Pennsylvania Dutch say. So, is there a best place to live? I guess I need to move back to Minnesota.

Ya, you betcha.

Yumping Yellybeans.

At least I can relate to that.

Wolf

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Cat and Mouse

There’s a mouse in the house. I know there is, because the cat sits in the kitchen for hours, waiting for it to appear. She has patience, that cat. Every night, for hours, she sits there, waiting.

Tonight, the mouse decided to go on a stroll. Well, a fast stroll. It darted out in front of the cat and she took off and caught it. She played with it. She didn’t kill it or even wound it. She likes toys and I guess this one is more fun than her balls and fake mice, because the real one keeps moving. She bounced the mouse around and lost it. Now she is sitting by the couch, waiting patiently for it to reappear.

The other 2 cats are outdoor freaks, and no big deal if they see a mouse. They see all kinds of prey all day: rabbits, birds, ground hogs, you name it. So they sit back and observe. But the little indoor cat is entranced. She can’t wait for her playmate to come out so she can catch it in her claws and throw it around.

I should set a trap, but guess who will get caught? Yes, the cat. She notices every new thing in the house. She investigates. She is a nosy cat. She is a tattle tale cat. She sees the smallest bug in the house and makes a big deal out of stalking it and catching it. She amuses herself. She gets into everything.

I can’t eat without her checking out the fare. She refuses to let me eat in peace. She has to know what is on my plate. And she waits for me to share with her. I really don’t know why. She rarely eats people food, but she has to know. It’s her nature.

She is running around like a wild banshee right now. I guess the mouse ventured out of his hiding place. She will be tired tomorrow, sleeping all day, waiting for the sun to go down, so she can take her place in the kitchen, waiting for her playmate to appear. The mouse should really leave, if he knows what’s good for him. The cat is relentless and will play with him until death do they part.

Wolf

Want to take a bus ride?

If you were a bus driver would you want to take a bus ride? If you were on the computer all day, would you go home and get on the internet? If you were a hair dresser, would you want to cut your kids’ hair? Well, I am on the phone all day, and I do not answer my phone at home.

For years, I let it ring. The phone would ring all night. And then I realized that the old fashioned, dial up computer access has its merits. I dial up, leave the PC on, and can do what I want and no phones ring.

When I finally do hear from my friends or relatives, they all say the same thing: “Hey, we tried to call, but your line is always busy.”

“Oh? Really? I must have been on the internet. I am an internet game junkie.”

Now I have a cell phone. Not that I want it. The company I work for, gave it to me. They want to be able to reach me whenever they need to. But, I also found out, if you don’t turn it on, the only thing they can get, is my voice mail. I have 31 voice mails and guess what? I don’t even know how to access the @#%#@%% thing.

My nephew came over the other day. “Hey Auntie Wolf, why don’t you get wireless access? You could play your games and still answer your phone. And it’s much faster. And why don’t you have a DVD player? And how come you don’t get rid of your land line and just have a cell? And you know, lap tops are really cheap. You should get rid of that monstrosity and get a new wireless laptop.”

I smile at him, and say, “Would you like a root beer float? Or how about some homemade brownies?” I don’t even bother to respond to his questions.

I love technology and I do like to talk to people. It’s just that I am burned out, yakking all day with the customers. I have to do that, and I do. But I don’t have to talk when I am tired of it. And by 530pm, every day, I don’t have any energy left. And they say that customer service is an easy job? Not in my book. I am just as exhausted if I had been on a landscaping job. Not physically, of course, but just as tired. I think listening is a difficult job. I mean really listening. And being empathetic. And saying you are sorry all the time. And taking the hit. And making others feel that their problems are very important, and that I will take the burden and solve any and all of their issues.

I don’t get any calls anymore at home. I can’t remember the last time the phone rang. And you know what? I love my dial up archaic internet access. If people want to get in touch with me, what’s wrong with writing an old fashioned letter? But don’t expect me to answer it. I am playing games on my computer.

Wolf

Gobble

The Company decided to hire 25 College Grads. And, get this, to give them 8 months of training. In those 8 months, the kids would travel around the country, visiting many of the facilities owned by the company, to learn the business. All expenses and salary paid, of course.

Seven of the kids arrived at our facility this week. I was chosen as one of those who would talk turkey to the kids, to give them a flavor of our organization. Gobble Gobble.

Two lovely girls sat by my desk, staring at me, pens and pads in hand, waiting for my diatribe. I started out:

“Hi. Where are you from? Ohio? Wow. Mid west girls. Nice. I am a mid west person myself. Did you say Columbus? Great city. Ok girls, here we go.”

For the next hour, I gave the girls a sermon on customers, on loyalty, on honesty, on being the kind of partner that the customers love. And mostly, on how to help their accounts save money. I noticed the girls taking notes, not saying much. Just writing down stuff. And I continued on and on and on. I felt like a mentor, a savior, and a real turkey. Gobble again. It was lunch time when I finished, and the girls said they had to leave to go to lunch. I thanked them and handed them my business card, extolling the merits of having a wide network of contacts. They left. I thought I was through. Then in about 30 minutes, 3 more kids showed up and I started up the dog and pony show. And an hour later, the last 2 were at my desk. The kids were attentive, and polite. I wondered if they really heard what I was saying. They had 4 more days of visiting the facility and on Friday, they were scheduled to appear before the managers, to present what they had learned.

It was then that my co-workers attacked me. “What the hell Wolf? You were only supposed to take 15 minutes with each group and then let them sit with each one of us. You hogged the whole day.”

Hey! No one told me. I suffered the indignity and told them that I was sorry, but the kids didn’t seem to be in too much of a hurry to leave. As the week progressed, I ran into the kids as they made their way around the building. By then we were buddies. We had bonded.

On Thursday, the kids invited me to go to lunch with them. And whenever they had a question or concern during their short stay, they stopped by my desk to ask me for help.

Doggone it. They will be leaving tomorrow, to move on to another facility. How can I feel attached to these kids? What is our connection? I don’t have the answer. I am perplexed.

I really wish them well. After all, I suppose one day, they will be running the show. I hope they remember one thing I told them. Cherish your customers, show them respect and gratitude and don’t try to sell them something they don’t need.

And above all, call me, if you need me. I love these kids.

Wolf

If a tree falls in the forrest…..

“What in the heck are you doing Wolf?”

“Just sitting here, looking out the window. And you will never guess what happened.”

“What?”

“A tree fell down. It just fell. No wind, no nothing. It just toppled right over.”

“Oh my gosh! I see it. It’s the big willow tree. We better tell someone.”

“Why? Like they won’t see it?”

“Well, someone has to clean it up.”

“Yeah, well, it ain’t gonna be you or me.”

“We could help.”

“I can’t.”

“Why not?”

“My knee is acting up. It sounds like rice krispies. Snap, crackle and pop, every time I walk.”

“You better go to the doctor. That doesn’t sound so good.”

“What’s he gonna do? The last time I went with a sore shoulder, he told me to quit playing games on the computer. And before that, I went with a sore toe and he told me not to walk on it. Like, how do you not walk on your toe?”

“You might need a knee operation.”

“Nope. I am not old enough. Those knee replacements are good for only about 10 years.”

“How long do you think you will live? I mean, if you have another 10 years, I will eat my hat.”

“Are you insinuating that I will die before I hit 83? Give me a break. I am in perfect health.”

“No, you aren’t. You are a mess and you know it.”

“I can prove that I am still a hot chick. Let’s go out to the pub and I will show you.”

“No. The last time you tried to prove you were a hot mama, they threw us out. They said you were a drunk old dried up prune.”

“That was you, Minnie. Not me. I just went along with it.”

“I don’t even drink. So it was not me. It was you. And I refuse to get embarrassed by you. So, no. I am not going. I am going to help clean up that tree.”

“Suit yourself. I am going to the pub to grab a sandwich, and who knows what else.”

“And just how are you going to go with that bad knee?”

“Don’t worry your little head about it. Guys love to help crippled chicks.”

“Hey, I just heard it. Your knee. It is making all kinds of sounds. WTF?”

“I told you. It makes quite a racket. I think I will call 911 and ask them to take me to the pub. The last time I called, they took me to the liquor store. I always insist upon the same driver.”

“You are really whacked out Wolf.”

“That may be. But I am a hoot. And they say that laughter is healing. And I am going to the pub to laugh my knee back to health. See you later, Minnie. I will be back, if I don’t get a better offer.”

Wolf