Archive | August 2013

The List

Back in my younger days, all I wanted to do was “go out”.

Didn’t matter where or with who just “go out”.  I loved to go places with my friends and with my family and just be “out”.

Not “outside” mind you.

That’s a whole other thing.

But now that I’m in my not-so-younger years, all I want to do is stay home!!

How did that happen????

I still like to get together with my friends and family but I’d just rather them come to my house.  There’s a comfort level to it, I guess; besides the fact that if it’s at my house, I don’t have to worry about being late.

Unfortunately, hosting also means cleaning.

And by cleaning I really mean straightening.

But let’s face it:  the only way my house is getting cleaned/straightened is if I’m having folks over.

I’m a deadline girl.

So last week when we found out that the kids were coming to visit, all manner of frenzy ensued.

My first order of business was “The List”.

Oh yes, there must be a list and that list must be made into an Excel spreadsheet.

I get the list-thing from my mother.

The Excel spreadsheet???

That’s just my own brand of crazy pushing to the forefront!

The List is really two-fold.

Firstly, because I’m old and I can’t remember stuff; and second-ish because with The List, I can mark off stuff so as to appear that I’m accomplishing things.

Of course, that means that every single solitary thing that I plan to do gets put on The List.

For instance, you can’t just put “Clean Bathroom”.

Oh no, that will never do!!

Instead, The List says:

  • Clean toilet
  • Clean sink
  • Clean tub
  • Empty trash
  • Sweep floor
  • Mop Floor
  • Clean mirror

Yes it makes for an extra long list but look at all the crossing-off potential!!

Not only is the bathroom clean, but I’ve managed to knock off SEVEN things from The List!!

Mission so accomplished!!

And now that I’ve crossed off 37 items from The List, I’m feeling pretty good about myself.

Except that I’ve still got 36 more things to do!

The hardest by far was the kitchen sweeping and mopping.

I figured that since I really hate to sweep and/or mop, I better do it right so I moved everything out of the kitchen.

Then I started sweeping.

I swept and I swept and I swept.

It seemed that I would never get finished until I realized the problem….


Have you ever tried to sweep a floor with a four-legged Swiffer walking through your dust pile?

After fussing at him for the millionth time to get out of that pile of rejected dog food that was along the edges of the floor that he now has all kinds of interest in, he turns and looks at me with this huge dust-bunny hanging from his nose!!

I wish I had a picture to show you but hello……SWEEPING!!!!


So I got it all swept and started mopping and since our little pooch doesn’t like to get his paws wet, he left me alone to sweat it out by myself.

And where was the Mr., you ask??

Well, after telling me that if I did the sweeping he would do the mopping, he promptly disappeared.

But never fear, he had his own cleaning project going so it’s all good!!

I finally got it all done and put the mop and bucket in the laundry room, telling the Mr. that I was too ding-dong tired to dump the water.  I’d just do it later.

Well, later ended up being about 9:30 at night because…..

It wasn’t on The List!!!!!

How could I have missed putting this on The List???

I would have felt GREAT marking that one off!!

When I finally remembered the bucket, I decided I would go out through the garage and dump the water around back.  Taj, of course, came with me.  I dumped the bucket, wrung out the mop and left it all on the runway to dry out.

{For those of you who don’t know, the runway is the sidewalk that goes the length of our house from the back patio to the garage.  We call it the runway because Mr. Prancy-pants likes to strut down the walk}

{Also, Mr. Prancy-pants is Taj…..not the Mr.!}

So the next morning, I stiffly got up out of bed (people really shouldn’t clean when they’re not used to it!!) and let Taj out the back door.

Now at 6:30 in the morning it’s pretty dark so I turned on the outside light.

Taj took about 2 steps and stopped.

Something caught his eye.

Something was blocking his way.

Something was scaring him to death.

Then the barking started.

He’d take a step forward then run back to the door and bark his head off.

I peek down the walk and there it was………….the ever-so-scary MOP!!!



I tried to explain to him that it was just the mop and bucket.

I reminded him that he saw me put it there last night.

I tried to calm him but……….HE’S A DOG!!!

So I go outside in my nightgown, down the runway and show Taj that it’s ok; it’s just a mop.

But he would have none of it!!!!

I guess that’s what happens when you only clean once a year.

Nobody in my house recognizes it!!  🙂



Sweat Shop

When I was growing up, my parents were self-employed.

Well, actually they still are but that’s beside the point.

Anywho, while some of you are thinking how great it sounds to be your own boss, to set you own hours and to not work for “the man”, the reality is that you work all the bloomin’ time, you have no money and you ARE “the man”!!!

When Daddy first left Rand McNally to start his own printing business, McLean Printing, he and mom were the only two employees.

The only “paid” employees.

{Of course, nobody was really getting paid in those early days so I guess I’m playing fast and loose with that statement.}

Eventually, the business was able to make enough money to hire another person, my Uncle Raymond (or Big R).

Side bar:  Uncle Big R was the one who originally called me Mishy-Moshy.  It actually went “Mishy-Moshy-Mishy-Moshy-Mishy-Moshy-Mishy”!!  So thankful Belle shorted it to “Mish”!!!

And then many years later Dad bought out Robert’s Printing and gained a lot of new employees (like Old Man Jackson) that he actually paid.

But even with all those people, when it was crunch time, his kids were the ones at the shop working our little fingers to the bone.

We were the ones who couldn’t leave for vacation until the job was done.

We were the ones slaving away on a Saturday afternoon.

We were the ones who made a thousand trips around the pool table at home collating a magazine or book.

We were also the ones who swore we would never EVER be self-employed!

Back in the olden days when it was just Mom and Dad at the little shop on Versailles Road, us kids had no choice but to be there too.

McLean Printing was in the back half of the building and Betty’s Beauty Shop was in the front.

This is what it looked like at the time (the back half anyway):

McLean Printing vintage

Sometimes we would take our bikes with us and ride around in the parking lot.  Sometimes we would make up games to play in the office while they were working in the press/layout/everything else room.

But always we were together.

And always it was hot!

That little building didn’t have a/c and with all that equipment running, it was miserable sometimes.  Sure, we would open the windows but it didn’t help much.

And there was always one of us who would complain loud and long about the scorching temp.

I’ll let you figure out which one!  🙂

One summer (I think it was in the late 70’s) there was a group of boys in our town who formed a gang.

They called themselves the “Midnight Heads”.

Sounds ominous, right?

Now before you think they were a bunch of hoodlums, well, they were but not your typical hoodlums.  Turns out they were a bunch of rich kids who were bored and decided to cause some trouble.

These “Heads” would put pillow cases over their heads so they must have been some ugly rich kids!

One steamy night we were all at the shop, per usual, and all the windows were open.  It was pretty dark out so it must have been late though I don’t really remember.  I do know that Burger Queen was still open next door.

Does anybody remember Queenie Bee???



All of a sudden there were a couple of hooded guys standing at the open window looking in at us.

Let me tell you, for a girl who is scared of her own shadow, this just about scared me to absolute death!!!

Daddy yelled at them to “get on outta here” and they took off.  We were all pretty shaken up and stuck close by Dad until we headed home that night.

The next morning, when Dad got to the shop, there on the side of the building in big black letters was painted “MIDNIGHT HEADS”.

We had been tagged!

We found out later that they had also spray painted a cop car on the next street over.

Bunch of punks!!

The police did eventually bust those hooded thugs but I can’t help but wonder how many of these boys grew up to be doctors or lawyers or politicians.

{I’m putting my money on politician!}


Clutches & Rain Bonnets

The clutch on the Mr.’s truck went out this week.

It went out on Monday so that means that for the whole ding-dong week we have had to share MY car.

I know we have shared the truck for like EVER but I’ve gotten used to having my own transportation.  I like my little space to think my own thoughts and sing my own songs at the top of my own lungs.

Not that the Mr. isn’t a joy to ride with.  He’s great.  He’s chatty and sharey and all kinds of patient with me when I can’t get my stuff together as he slows down for me to jump out at the ungodly time of 7:25 AM.

And of course, HE has no complaints, I’m sure, as I am known far and wide for my pleasantness.

Still and all, it’s nice to finally get back to my routine and get all my air vents pointed toward my face so that my hair blows back like a supermodel and to get my radio station back and put the CD of Mike Bowling back into the player.

{Yes, Mr., I was quite surprised when I was expecting Mike and got Adele!!)

But the Mr. was able to put in a brand new master cylinder thing and some other something, which makes him a superhero in my book, though we all know that behind every Superman is a Wonder Woman helping him!!

And that’s where the Mish comes in……

The Mr. ordered the parts he needed on Monday night and they were set to be delivered on Wednesday.  So Tuesday evening he wanted to start taking things apart on the truck and he asked me to help.

I guess I should explain that when the Mr. asks me to “help”, that really just means to stand by and run and fetch stuff.  It’s LOTS of fun and accounts for no shortage of “loving” exchanges between the two of us.

The problem on this night was that it was raining.

The truck was in the carport but there is no door leading directly from the house so I knew I had to do something to protect my head.

This is something that, after all these years together, the Mr. still doesn’t get.

Who cares if your hair gets wet???

Who is going to see it???

Who are you trying to impress???

But as any McLean can tell you, it has nothing to do with wet hair or even how bad we may look.

It’s all about the can of hairspray we used to shellac our ‘do in place.

When that helmet of Final Net gets wet, it sets up like concrete!!!

Not good!!

So what’s a girl to do????

She reaches into her Me-maw bag of tricks and comes out with a grocery sack.


Sure did!

When I walked around the corner of that carport with a plastic Kroger bag over my head, loops around my ears, you should have seen the look on the Mr.’s face!

Of course he didn’t comment.

SEe, when your clutch goes out, all traces of humor leave your body.

But I’m glad to report that the truck is running great, the humor is back and the dome of spray on this head stayed dry as a bone!!  🙂



Nobody Knows The Trouble I’ve Seen


This has been one heck of a week.

And it’s only Wednesday!!

It started out with the Mr. finding some charges on our bank statement that he knew nothing about.

Now, I know what ya’ll are thinking……Mish has been shopping!

But let me assure you that it wasn’t me.

I cannot stand shopping.

I mean, I’ll do it if I have to.

I go to buy groceries and whatnot but let me tell you, I complain loud and long about it!!

LOUD and LONG!!!

My poor friend, Lynne, hears me gripe every week about having to go to Kroger and then when she sees my puny list she secretly wants to slap me.

Yes, it’s secretly but I can see it in her eyes!!

So anyway, the Mr. asked me about these charges (one for $60 and the other for $202) and I think he believed me when I told him that I didn’t do it.

But that meant a call to the bank, a call to the companies that were charged, a visit to the bank to dispute the charges and most importantly, cancelling my card.

See, it was MY card the perp used to STEAL from us.


And that just ticks me off!!!

Of course, at first I thought this was a trick of the Mr.’s to make sure I don’t spend any more money but now I’m convinced it was some punk kid.  Both charges were for online gaming and were made by some dude named “Kevin”.

So for all you Kevin’s out there playing games online, I’m looking for you, you STEALER!!!

Then on Monday, I’m getting ready for work and watching/listening to the Today Program and I hear a story about some college professor who once killed his entire family and spent some time in a mental institution and now is living his life in another state under a different name.  I wouldn’t normally pay much attention to this story except that the reporter said that it happened in 1967, the year of my birth.

{He didn’t actually SAY it was the year of my birth….I added that part!}

And then that reporter just ticked me off!!!

He said something about the police investigation “nearly 50 years ago”.


I think NOT!!

I know he put that “nearly” in there but I’ll have you know that I am nowhere NEAR 50!!!!!

I am the spry young age of 45………..til later in the month.

I won’t be “near 50” until I’m 49 1/2, thank you very much!!

So between that silly reporter and dudes named “Kevin”, the weeks not off to a very good start.

I did, however, manage to get my not-anywhere-near-50 self to work and Lynne comes in to inform me that I’ve got my shirt on inside out!!


I can’t even get dressed!!!

Maybe I’m closer to 50 than I want to admit!

And if all that’s not bad enough for a horrible week, the Mr. suggests that we go for a little dip in the pool the last two nights.  It’s supposed to rain the rest of the week so we figured we better get in while the getting’s good.

So there I am just floating around on my pool noodles, minding my own business, and SMACK!

Right on the back.

What in this world?

I look at the Mr.




Right on my face!


After I took quite a beating, I began to suspect that “mosquito” was just a flimsy excuse to strike me repeatedly about the head and shoulders!

But alas, I’ve got a slew of new itchy spots so I feel a little bad for smacking the Mr. back!

A “little” bad.  🙂



Those Were The Days


Way back in 1985 I left the small town of Frankfort behind and headed to the bright lights and big city of Campbellsville.

Ok, so the lights weren’t so bright (I think they turned them off around 9:15) and the big city was really a much smaller town than Frankfort.

But when you’re 18 and the wonderful world of college is ahead, you tend to get a “grass is always greener” perspective of life.

How exciting.


On my own.

Family all of an hour and a half away.

Well, maybe not.

In my case, family was an arms-length away.

See, one of the reasons I picked Campbellsville College was because my sister, Marti, was going there.

Built in friend!!!

Pretty smart, right???

Plus I knew she HAD to be my friend ‘cause Mom told her she had to.

Not only was she my first college friend, she was also my roommate.


She already knew all my bad habits.

She knew I snored like a freight train.

She knew I was a slob.

She knew I was so dedicated to my studies that she would have to force me away from the books and into all social settings.

Ok……….the last part wasn’t so true.

College was a blast!!

The first day.

Then I made a startling discovery.

You have to STUDY in college.

Did ya’ll know this????

Well, the whole study concept was cramping my style just a bit.

How in the world did they expect you to attend an 8:00 am class on economics when you just got back to the dorm at 2:00 am???

{Not that I ever did that, but I’ve heard of people who did!}

I made lots of new friends during my years at good ole C-ville that I still have to this day.  And I’ve got lots of stories I could share but I want to keep these friends so I’ll just share this one:

See, Campbellsville was a teeny tiny town and Campbellsville College was a strict Southern Baptist school.  So you’d think there wouldn’t be much to do in such an atmosphere.

And you’d be right.

Well, mostly.

There was one thing that every student must experience at least once.

The Trestle.

Oh yes…….it’s as exciting as it sounds!!


Marti and her friends, who became my friends (whether they liked it or not!!), where the first to take me to the trestle.

Now, I’m sure when Mom & Dad sent me to college they felt I would be completely safe with Marti.

After all, Marti was the firstborn.

The perfect child.

The one who never got in trouble.

The one I was convinced was part-Quaker.

Oh yes, Marti was all those things.


This was the girl who taught me how to get in the dorm after the doors were locked.

This was the girl whose favorite songs were “Oh Sheila” and “Walk This Way”.

This was the girl who would jump up on the bed and dance to these songs even though dancing was very against the rules.

Oh yes, Marti was a blast!!

And Marti took her sweet, innocent sister to the trestle!

The thing about the trestle was that to get there (and it was quite a long trek) you had to first go through a tunnel.

train tunnel

That’s right!


In the dark.

With bats.

And it wasn’t just a regular tunnel.

It had a bend in it so you couldn’t see the other side.

You had to walk into complete darkness and pray to the Almighty that a train didn’t come.

But never fear.

Like most 18-20 year olds, we had a plan.

If a train comes just plaster yourself again the wall of the tunnel.

Oh sure, the train could totally suck you in but if you gripped hard enough you could surely hang on against the pull of a speeding train.

{I’m sure there’s some physics thing going on here but since we’ve already established the fact that I was at college to socialize and not study, I have no idea what it all means!}

Once you made it through the dark tunnel, it was another couple of miles to the trestle.

It had a beautiful view and I’m sure that all these years later, C-ville student are still making the trek.

Would I go there now?

Absolutely not.

But if you’re a Campbellsville University student, GO!  It’s pretty cool.

Plus tomorrow you’ll wake up and be 45 years old and saying stuff like “those kids have no business doing something so dangerous”.


And that’s exactly what I did one night with my friends Renee, Rick and David.

We went to the trestle.

At night.

I don’t know why.

Well, yes I do.

Boys asked us to go.

Enough said!!

Everything was going pretty well.

We got through the tunnel.

We made it to the trestle.

Then we headed back.

That’s when it happened.

Just as we got back to the tunnel, we heard something in the woods.

What was it????

We couldn’t see anything in the dark.

But it sounded BIG!!!

That’s when Rick yelled, “It’s dogs!” and started trying to push Renee up a tree with no branches!!!

As for me, I don’t think I’ve ever been so scared in all my life.

And why wasn’t David trying to push ME up a tree?????

Thankfully, it was just a couple of guys from school who were dressed all in black and had been waiting to scare us.


That was my very last time going to the trestle.

But I learned an important lesson.

If you’re going to the trestle at night….DON’T TELL ANYBODY!!!