Monday, April 5, 2010

computers and bobcats

Today is bill day. I hate bill day. It's this huge, monolithic, evil force and it scares the bejesus out of me! Bill day happens when you are married to a teacher. There is that once a month paycheck that visits and you think, " Oh, we have money! We have money!" Then two hours later it's more like "Oh shit! We've got fifty dollars to make it through the month!" So, for close to twenty years, I have faced bill day. For close to twenty years, I have faced once a month nausea and heart palpitations.... then I count out my change and I buy a lottery ticket.

Bill day has also become the bar by which I measure other things. Does this create as much stress as bill day? For instance, going to Iowa City to the Dr... not a bill day. Dinner with the parents.... bill day.

Then as I sit with my daughter and she is explaining posting pictures within text while on the computer, it begins. In my head, I'm thinking, "I swear to God, she is speaking latin again!" Then the stomach starts doing some interesting moves. I feel like I am bruising a bit because her words are bouncing off my head with some force now. I see her lips are moving! but there aren't any words that are useful coming out! I need words so I can take notes! I need useful words. I need her to say, " Go here and press this button and everything will be okay" But that isn't happening!! Now the picture won't even work for her! I have a computer curse and I can tell that it is starting to rub off on her as well. Son in law, Micah comes over to help. They do something! I don't know what's happening but the screen is replaced with streams of gibberish and intermittently there are symbols, just to help the gibberish along. Micah says to just go in and place the something-something into the code somewhere-somewhere. CODE!! IT'S IN CODE! Your only suppose to break codes with your Little Orphan Annie de-coder rings, or if it applies, enemy messages during time of war! We could break something!! I feel like we are behind the curtain and only the wizard is suppose to be behind the curtain. We're doomed! Nothing good is going to come of this.....BILL DAY, BILL DAY, BILL DAY!!!

Then in comparison, there was the day I had walked down the drive and across the road to release a mouse from a live trap. Tip the trap and let the door fall open. Knock the little vermin out and I look up. I stand there in the middle of a "B" surface road in my crocs and jammies knowing that I can't run. I remind myself that in this situation, I shouldn't run. Because just a hundred feet away there was either the largest bobcat that I have ever seen or a juvenile mountain lion. My first thought was that I should have tossed him the damn mouse. We both just stood there looking each other over. The cat just seemed too big to be a bobcat, but the way he was standing, I could not see a long mountain lion tail. He had two balls of white on the face like mountain lion cheeks and there were no ear tufts. I knew that there was a bobcat around. I had seen tracks a number of times. I also knew that the neighbor had spotted a mountain lion the previous year, but he had thought it was just moving through. Boy! It looked big for a bobcat!! I didn't want to die in the middle of a "B" surface road in my jammies!! That was when I remembered a story that I had read about an american Indian detective and in the Indian way, I addressed the animal, "Little Brother, I have taken this place for my home. I have ponies and I will have other animals in my care. Please don't bother them. If you will leave me and mine alone then I will leave you and your family alone." Then we stood there just a moment longer and the cat turned and trotted into the woods on the other side of the road. I turned and slowly walked up the very, very long drive. Stopping a couple of times to look behind me. I opened the door and said to Mac, " You will never guess what just happened to me!..."..NOT A BILL DAY!


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