1. I don't know why it's taken me 22 years to figure this out (current age - 16 = # of years driving), but I'm a genius. Folks, ever been in your car on the way to a destination, and you're late? When you're late, you hit EVERY RED LIGHT, n'est-ce pas? Of course this has happened to you!
Now... same setting. In your car. But not late. Wanting to reply to an email on your iPhone or Blackberry or need some lipstick at the next red light. Can't get a red light to save your life, can you?
Duh... what a simple solution! The next time you're running late in your car and getting stopped frequently at red lights, simply start fumbling through your purse for a tube of lipstick to apply or start typing a reply to an email or text message during the red light. voila! No more red light. God I'm smart. Problem solved.
2. Yesterday I went to the 13-year-old's final soccer game (which they won, making their record for the year 8-0!). The game was an away game, which meant I had to schlep across town 45 minutes to an unfamiliar school's campus. I've brought Sophie to all of the home and away soccer games, because (a) generally there is an abundance of open space and grass at suburban middle school soccer fields (b) it's good for her to be social - she's extremely friendly and all the kids love her and (c) if I leave her home she eats the house. yeah. chews on the moulding. Not a good thing when one is trying to sell one's house, or really at any other time. Makes for a grumpy husband, to say the least. We now leave her in her crate if we can't take her with us during the day, and I hate to think of her cooped up for hours in a crate.
Anyway, when I arrived at the away game middle school, I noticed a distinct dearth of open space and greenery. This school had really impressive, high-rising metal bleachers towering over the soccer field instead. Sophie has no problem with stairs, so I toted her along and sat down with her in the bleachers among my fellow soccer moms and dads (of whom there was an increased presence because of its having been the last game).
Now - the above picture is not Sophie, which is fairly obvious because the owner of the pictured dog had the common sense to have the dog on a leash, while Sophie's mom does not, often.
Like the perfect dog she is (except for eating the house), Sophie snoozed on the floor of the bleachers next to me almost the entire game. She rose once to greet the husband when he arrived, then plopped back down. She did rearrange herself periodically, which prompted me to remove her leash to make it easier for her.
In the last 10 minutes or so of the game, she stood up and just casually began walking laterally down the aisle a bit. I got up to guide her back toward me but couldn't really figure out how to turn her around without (a) picking her up and turning her around (b) leading her all the way up to the top of the bleachers and back down or (c) leading her down one step to turn around and then ostensibly back up in the other direction.
I chose C.
Can you hear the loud buzzer?
As I tried to lead her down one step, she slipped, thereby causing her claws to scrape loudly against the metal bleachers, thus freaking her out completely. She went into full panic mode, scrambling on the metal bleachers, her claws deafeningly loud against the bleachers, which only made matters worse. She wanted OFF of the bleachers (from 3/4 of the way up to the top) and she wanted off NOW. I tried to contain her, but a fully panicked, full grown German Shepherd determined to leave the immediate vicinity is not easy to contain. I grabbed her, picked her up and held her as tightly as I could against my body on the bleachers as best as I could. She was violently, visibly shaking from head to toe in fear of the evil bleachers.
"Oh my gosh," the folks in the crowd (90% of whom I knew well) observed, "look at the dog shaking! "
"What a scaredy German Shepherd."
The husband, noticing the commotion, asked as I tried desperately to keep her from bolting, while half perched on a bleacher stair, teetering back and forth with her weight: "hey - do you want me to come get her?"
The knight in shining armor swooped down, picked up the frenzied, hysterical, 65-pound German Shepherd, and carried her to the safety of the flat cement above. She was exhausted. She lay down immediately and cowered in the comfort of the flat non-metal land. I was horribly embarrassed.
When all had settled down and the focus had returned to the soccer game, one of my friends chided: "hey - nice hearts," which referred to my underwear which, unbeknownst to me at the time, so tactfully stuck out of my low-rise jeans while I was holding the horrified dog.
I had to wear the underwear with the hearts.
Just to preserve her canine dignity, here she is captured on video being quite ferocious. I think there's a cat passing by in the front yard or something...