Post # 173
I used to be a normal size person for my height. I know exactly when I started gaining weight. Many, many years ago I was privileged to attend the Tejas Storytelling Festival in Denton, Tx. I worked in the youth department of a public library and had my expenses paid to attend the festival and learn something. It was awesome, but maybe that will be another post someday. Anyway, I traveled with another woman and we had a budget for food. We were in her vehicle and she was driving and she loved Dairy Queen. We stopped at every one between our home and Denton. Since every wide spot in the road in Texas has a DQ that was a lot of stops. It kick started my love affair with fountain cokes (sodas....but here we call every soft drink a coke) and Blizzards (preferably any of the cheesecake varieties). I have had way too many fountain cokes since then and now weigh 80 lbs more than I did before that little trip. If I even guesstimated and added up what I have spent on fountain cokes I would absolutely be sick. So far I know that high fructose corn syrup is really bad for you. The caffeine is robbing my bones of calcium. The weight is bad for my heart, knees, cholesterol, self esteem. I'm Mormon, for Pete's sake and we don't drink tea so I have guilt because I love to drink Dr Pepper, which is not tea but is caffeine & if we want to split hairs..... I need to stop drinking them. It is just about my only vice but still, I need to just do it and just drink water. I think my guardian angel is also trying to tell me to give them up too. Last Friday me and a coke had a terrible run in. Let me back up....a couple of blocks from my son's home is a brand new Toot n Totum and across the street is a fairly new Pak a Sak (both Tx panhandle versions of a 7-11 or Circle K type convenience store, and found as frequently as you'd find a Starbucks in Seattle). Toot n Totum is an old company....motto used to be drive up and "toot" and we will "tote" out whatever you need. Doesn't work that way any more and I don't know the Pak a Sak story---but back to our subject. When the new Toot n Totum was built they offered a grand opening special of any size fountain drink for 79 cents. Typical convenience store price for a 32 oz drink is 99 cents so of course Pak a Sak had to offer the same deal to compete. 4 months later they still have any size drink for 79 cents....so weakling that I am, every one of the 4 days I babysit my granddaughter I first stop at one of the convenience stores (they each have a drive-up window so I pick by who has the shortest line) and order a 44 oz Dr Pepper (I believe it is THE state drink of Texas and if that is not official please write your congressman). I don't drink coffee so I get my caffeine for the day from drinking Cokes...which in this case is Dr Pepper, not Coca-Cola. Confused yet? Anyway.....last Friday I got my usual 44 oz of high fructose corn syrup Dr Pepper. I always go in my son's front door, go straight to the baby's room, set down my purse and coke (which is not really a Coke) and pick up my granddaughter. I get there about 7:15 a.m. and Taylor usually is awake but barely, just laying there in her crib playing with her toes or toys or something. Her momma is always in the shower when I get there and my son is still in bed but they have a baby monitor and they know she is ok and Taylor is good about just laying in her bed until someone ventures in her room, or she gets mad and starts yelling and gets some attention. Anyway, our routine is ....I pick her up, change her diaper, rock her if she will let me and we talk, then I bathe her and give her breakfast. After that we play toys and read books, a little before 10 a.m. we go for a walk with her in the stroller, she goes to sleep, I put her in her crib and while she takes a nap I sit in the rocker next to her crib and drink my coke and read something. Friday everything was right on schedule. I picked up my coke and squeezed too hard I guess because the lid popped off of the cup. I quickly shoved the lid back down and at the same time managed to shove the straw through the bottom of the Styrofoam cup. Brilliantly thinking if I tipped the cup over on its side I could keep the coke from running out of that hole in the bottom so in that split second that was the decision I made....and popped the lid off again except this time coke dumped out of the top since it was on its side AND through the hole in the bottom. I am here to tell you that 44 oz of coke makes a big puddle. Did I mention my Morton's neuroma feet hurt like heck already and I was about to swallow an extra strength Tylenol with my coke? Ok fine. Sop that mess up. Text my son and daughter-in-law to see if they have any carpet shampoo. No. They do have a carpet shampooer but I have no idea how to use it and am in no mood to try to figure it out. Call my oldest daughter to see if she could come babysit sleeping Taylor so I can run home and get my carpet shampooer and then run to Wal-Mart to buy carpet shampoo. Ok fine, she will be there in 20. I live with 4 dogs that track in alot of dirt so I shampoo my carpet about once a week. A couple of shampoos back I dropped the water canister to my cleaner. The cleaner still works perfectly but the water leaks out...so I am thinking since I live on the far north side of town and my son lives on the far south side of town and there is a Wal-mart in the middle where I have to stop and get carpet shampoo anyway, I might as well just buy a new carpet cleaner because I am going to need one at home soon anyway to replace the one with the cracked tank. Ok. My daughter gets there, but by then Taylor is awake...didn't sleep through me muttering to myself as I sopped up all that Dr Pepper. I decide since Taylor loves to go shopping that Becky, Taylor and I will all just go to Wal-Mart so off we go. Did I mention my feet already hurt? Get to Wal-Mart and we end up walking all over the store looking at stuff....not good on my feet but Becky and I were having fun looking at stuff and Taylor was having fun waving her little hand at every person she saw. Go home and open the box. The carpet shampooer is not put together. I should insert here that I have never been good at putting things together, no matter how simple, when I feel good. Me with excruciating foot pain, no caffeine in my system because I dumped it in the carpet, AND something to put together??? NOT a pretty picture. Ok...only four screws to attach the handle and the tool/hose holder. Ok, fine. Need a screw driver. I am not at home. I am at my son's house. I don't know where the heck they store their screw drivers and I don't like digging through other people's stuff looking for one. Ok, fine. Go searching. They don't have a kitchen junk drawer where I might find a screw driver. WHO does not have a kitchen junk drawer??? Go into my son's garage, which could not hold a car if it had to because obviously that is the man cave since a pool table and couch and some bar stools are out there.....along with a shelving unit full of tools. Do you think I could find a simple Phillips screw driver, size small? NO, so I took a flat head screw driver, size large or at least medium, and attempted to put the handle on the carpet cleaner. I kid you not, I worked on that thing forever. Had to stop in the middle and feed Taylor her lunch. Tried again to get the handle attached. See the tool/hose holder and decided you know what? Today I don't need that thing on here....just the dadgum handle so I can clean the carpet. 4 lousy screws!!!! The problem was the screwdriver needed to fit in a molded hole in the cleaner that the screws fell into and the molded hole was not as large as the screw driver I had. An hour later I figured out that you HAVE to put that tool holder on to make the whole thing go together but it doesn't really matter because my screw driver is still too big. Why, you ask, did I not just go back to Wal-Mart and buy a screw driver that was the proper size? Multiple reasons....my daughter had left to go to work and I have agoraphobia and can't go to Wal-mart by myself when I am having a panic attack and by then I definitely was in panic attack mode, my other daughter that usually keeps Taylor in the afternoon was at the hospital with her dad, my feet hurt, I could not think, I had had NO caffeine or extra strength Tylenol (yes i could have take one but in the midst of all this 'it should only take me a minute to install 4 screws in the handle' I failed to think of it. I just was not having a good time. There towards the end Taylor was in her crib fussing at me because she wanted to get down in the floor and help me put together that cleaner and I was sitting in the floor next to the crib wondering why on earth they could not have made the box just a wee bit bigger and put the dadgum cleaner in there with the handle attached and saved me all this frustration! She and I were both getting to the point that we wanted to cry. I kept telling Taylor that I PROMISE i will never bring another coke into your bedroom if I can only just get the dadgum handle attached to this cleaner so I can clean up your sticky carpet!!!!! Finally, 4 hours after I dumped my coke (Dr Pepper) I FINALLY had the shampooer sort of southern engineered enough that I could clean the carpet. Screws and nuts were not involved but I got it to work and left it for my son to eventually do correctly. The hose, which is built in to use with attachments to clean upholstery and was suppose to be wrapped around that tool/hose holder??? I never got the holder on so I just let that hose flap around like a cat's tail while I shampooed the carpet. You'd think that would teach me that cokes are evil drinks and to stay away, far far away from them. No. Today, on my way out of the house to meet my sister and go to Kohl's I was going to stop and buy a coke. As I started to leave the house I thought you know, I have can cokes in the refrigerator....I will just fill an insulated mug up with one so I don't have to worry about straws and Styrofoam cups that get holes in them and make a big mess. Got out my insulated mug. Filled it with ice. Poured in a can of Dr Pepper. Actually it held two cans. Tried to put the lid on the cup which should just easily snap on the top. Pushed too hard and dumped 24 oz of Dr Pepper in my kitchen floor. It made a big puddle.