07 July 2010

Laid off, having an affair, dead grandma, OH MY.

I have a pretty active imagination. I am also inclined to think the worst. When my dad calls me up and leaves a message that says, “Hey, can you call me as soon as you get this?” I will immediately think, “Oh my god, someone has died, or fallen ill, or got hit by a commuter train even though there are no commuter trains in Wisconsin” and not the “I can’t print my invoice” that my dad is actually calling me about. When my boss calls me into his office I will immediately think, “Oh fuck, I’m getting laid off” when really he just wants me to take on a new project. Now that I think about it, I don’t know if I always think the worst – as I can think of many situations where someone has said to me, “I hope I get to see you soon, I have a surprise present for you” and I will immediately think that this person has gotten me the lost treasure of Blackbeard the pirate or at least a really nice 100x zoom digital camera when really it’s just a fridge magnet from their most recent vacation. I can’t help my brain for thinking this way, my brain thinks big.

Anyway, this brings us to last Tuesday when Andy and I were sitting on the couch. I was watching TV and Andy was playing on Facebook. I did an exaggerated move to let him know I was planning on sneaking a look over his shoulder and HE MOVED THE SCREEN AWAY FROM ME. My brain immediately thought, “Oh my god, he is having an affair”. Of course my brain thought about this further and thought itself ridiculous but decided to force random paranoid accusations out of my mouth in an effort to verify my brain’s habit of jumping to conclusions.

“Whatcha doing?” (Notice the casualness in my paranoia)

“Nothing. Playing on Facebook.”

“Can I see?” (Still trying to be playful)


“What is it? What are you doing? Will I see later?” (Getting a bit desperate here)


So of course I jump on Facebook the minute he left the room and I didn’t see anything. What the hell was Andy doing on Facebook that he wouldn’t let me see?? Was he hiding pictures from me? Was he UN-FRIENDING ME???? I went outside for a cigarette and thought about it. “It’s no big deal” I thought to myself, “we don’t have to share everything. It’s fine. I’m cool.” And I was, mostly. By the morning I had magically let it go and went on with my week without even remembering it.

On Friday before the 4th of July weekend, my boss had taken the day off. Normally my boss lets us out a bit early but since he was gone and no one else was in charge meant that we’d have to work a full shift. I have a bit of a problem working Fridays. That is to say, I’m tired from working all week, I’m usually pretty bored (Fridays are dead), and I really just want to get the hell out of work and get to the pub for a beer. Compound that with a Friday before a 3 day weekend (even more dead) and I can get pretty impossible. I had trouble sitting at my desk. The hours dragged and dragged on. I came overcome with an infliction for sighing. I smoked more cigarettes than my lungs could handle. I just wanted to leeeeeaaaaavvvvvveeeee. Emailing back and forth with Andy I found that he was in the same predicament – his boss was out of the country. I felt little solace with him being stuck at work too, but was a bit grateful he wasn’t let out early where he would of course text me to tell me how lovely the pub was and how cold his beer was. By 3:30 PM , my co-worker had just about enough of me sighing and whining and general complainery about it being dead and having no one to let us out early. My co-worker generously said that if I wanted, I could leave and work from home for the rest of the afternoon. HELL YEAH! While it’s still work, working from home is miles better than working in the office.

When I got home, I booted up the computer, logged into work, and emailed Andy to let him know what was going on. His response?

“Bugger. I could have left already. The office is pretty empty. I was only staying to cheer you up. I feel rather silly now!”

15 minutes after the email, Andy was through the door – happy to be home but looking incredibly stressed out. I asked him if he wanted a beer. No. Did he want something to eat? No. Did he want to talk about it? No. He was really stressed and I didn’t know what to do. I hugged him for a bit but it didn’t really seem to matter – the man was stressed. My mind immediately went into tragedy mode. “Oh god, he’s been laid off. Maybe he doesn’t have any money for the rest of time. Did someone die? IS HE HAVING AN AFFAIR?” What made it worse is when I asked him if he wanted to talk about it he just responded, “No, I don’t. You’ll just have to trust me on this.” OH SURE, pull the trust card! I was a bit put off but I kept it to myself. He eventually ate a bit and at 5 PM, we headed out. I wanted to go to the Harp but Andy said that he was too stressed to deal with everyone right now and took us to the Little Knight instead.

So we sat there, at the Little Knight, making random small talk about things that didn’t matter. He was still stressed and I was still put off and it was an awkward time sitting there. A little after 6 PM we decide to leave and head down to the Harp.

At the Harp, I run to the Ladies while Andy gets us a couple drinks and heads outside to the patio. When I get to the patio, Mari and Marilyn were there and there was a big mylar balloon attached to one of the chairs.

“Oh! Who’s birthday is it?” (thinking to myself, ‘shit! I don’t have time to get this person a card!’)

Which they respond, “It’s YOURS!”

It was a goddamn surprise party. The Tuesday Facebook incident? That was Andy sending out the invites to everyone. The stress getting home on Friday? That was Andy being freaked that since I got out of work early I would have headed to the Harp right away instead of going home first. Maggie, my very awesome sister, had arranged the party and Andy helped. It was the first surprise party I’ve ever had and truthfully, if it means that in the week(s) leading up to the party I think horrible things about my love one(s), I never want to have one again. But I have to admit, it was a blast.

Below are the pictures. I realize now that I have a smudge on my iPhone camera that I have since taken care of. Regarding the My Pretty Ponies, Andy put in the Facebook invite, “If you are looking to give a gift, she’s always ragging on about ponies. They don’t have to be real and they don’t have to be life-like.” People took that message pretty seriously even though I really don’t like ponies and I just always say I want one to be annoying. I will never ask for a pony again.

Andy, being smug as he just pulled one over on me.

Joe and Vicki show off their pony gift

American Dave tries to burn my pony.  Boo!
Susan, Andrea, Roland and little Oliver

This is the littlest pony, Chet.  Chet is my favorite and is still in my purse...somewhere.  He's really tiny.

Gu gets attacked by the sun while I get attacked by Andy and an awesome balloon.

The ponies did come in handy as we had My Little Pony races (Marilyn is surprising good at toy pony races) and I later made a My Little Pony Lei. After the Lei was constructed and the tiara placed, I had sat in the bar waiting for a drink. This woman comes up to me and says, “Happy Birthday!” which I thought, “How does she know it’s my birthday?” – like I dress in a pink tiara and pony necklace every day.  My brain had obviously reached the breaking point of logical thought.

 Seriously, I like, wear this EVERY DAY.

Many thanks to my bestest, awesomest sister and my "I know when he's lying now" husband!


  1. Hilarious! I was gripped reading this!!

  2. The once in a lifetime surprise party. How cool. I like Chet too. Careful not to mistake him for a mint. :)


    I wondered about the pony thing. I have never heard of or seen you playing with ponies. Especially the pink and purple girly ones. I thought that was just me.

  3. Oh shit that is hilarious. A goddamned surprise birthday party - that's awesome!!

  4. Liz! Thanks for checking in. I'm currently reading your blog archives. I'm currently on Dec. 08. Thanks for getting me through my work day!