Building Character, One Ugly Car at at Time

Subaru

Thankfully, but not surprisingly, DJ has been accepted into several institutes of higher learning.  She is waiting on two more replies and waiting on financial assistance packages.  Her wise father has communicated that he will NOT pay $60,000 for a private school when she could get an equally good education for $20,000.

We’re taking bets.  These are her current options:

UNC, NC State (Go Pack!), Furman, University of South Carolina, and Elon.  Still haven’t heard back from American and George Washington.

I will have to say DJ is a fairly strong writer, but even with her talents, writing ions of essays was a struggle.  I was the proofer, for grammar and spelling.  I didn’t write the dang things and yet I thought if she sent me one more to wade through i was gonna bust a nugget.

Thought I’d share my favorite:

I have a twin. Well, not like a biological twin. This twin does not look like me. This twin does not have the exact same birthday as me either. We were both born, or created, in 1997.  That’s as far as the physical resemblance goes. I have a 1997 green Subaru station wagon. It is the ugliest thing I have ever seen, and yet it has become a part of me and my high school career. My Subaru defines me, sort of.

 The car has been in my family for many years. My grandmother bought it brand new and drove it for many of her middle aged years. It was then passed on to my aunt who drove it from Boston, MA, to Raleigh, NC, on a regular basis. Then, it was my turn. I begged my dad to trade in the car for another one. I offered to help pay for a newer vehicle with the babysitting money I’d been saving since 6th grade.  He refused promising it would “build character.” At first I was beyond embarrassed to be seen anywhere in the trash can on wheels.  But the more I drove it, the more I realized that with the right attitude this car could be the coolest in the St. Mary’s School parking lot. I began to joke around calling the car my “baby,” or my “twin,” or the “soobs.” My friends soon caught on, and in short time I had taken a disaster and created a masterpiece.

 On the first day of eleventh grade, I drove to school and parked next to all of the shiny convertibles, jeeps, and SUVs. Instead of feeling like I messed up the status quo, I thought, “their cars don’t stand a chance.” Everyone that passed by marveled at the “soob,” as if it had been transformed into a corvette.  But it wasn’t the car that had been transformed, it was my attitude.

When I acted like the Subaru was a gem, so did everyone else. It became the car my friends and I drove to our late night runs to Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, even when there were other wheels available with better speakers, seat warmers, and sunroofs. Rarely do I admit that my father is right, but having that car did build character. It also built friendships, inside jokes, memories, and of course some great Instagram pictures as we posed goofily on its roof.

 I have learned so much about myself from that little car.  I wouldn’t have had it any other way. Although she has already started complaining, in just a year or two, it will be my turn to pass down the good ole’ Subaru to my little sister.  I predict she will learn just as much from my baby as I did.   She’ll learn that material items aren’t everything and that your cool comes from within.

 You grow up in many ways.  In my family, one rite of passage is driving my grandmother’s old car.  My aunt got through it as have I. I hope that my two younger sisters get as much enjoyment and grow as much from the experience of driving the “soob” as I have.

 

Five Years and Counting

My first visit to a grief counselor was in March, 2010. She was cool, full-time counselor and part-time yoga instructor. I sat on the couch embracing an aqua Pier 1 looking pillow, protection from the questions she might ask.

I was there for grief, but clearly she’d bring out more. Trudy was going to force me to dig deep, to explore myself, my fears – ones I’d buried underneath my marriage. In many ways, Lisa was my security blanket. Now I was exposed. Nothing to cling to. Nothing to hide behind, except the pillow.

I hurt so deeply.

“How long will I feel like this?” I asked.

“It takes most people five years to feel completely whole again.” She didn’t sugar coat.

“That’s unacceptable. I can’t feel like this that long.”

She explained that my grief would not be as intense for five years, but that it could very well take a long, long time to move forward.

Yesterday marked the five year anniversary, and Trudy was right. I do feel whole again. Looking back, it seems like so much has happened over the past half-decade. But in many ways, it doesn’t seem so long ago that I first met my counselor.

Time goes slowly when you look forward but it seems fast when you look back.

I remember three things Trudy told me that could help to speed up my healing:

1) Lean on those around you

I was a master at that. I let folks support in any way they were willing. At times I told them what I needed. All stepped up to the plate.

2) Lean into your grief

She told me not to run, to allow myself to feel it. To cry. To talk it out. Not to hold back. Again, a tip I conquered.

3) Find new interests

I’ve tried. I wish I had more, but I’ve discovered writing, acting with my kids, and I’ve ventured into dating and spending time with some really cool people. I’ve got some work to do on this one though.

There were two other things I found important in my journey. One was to keep busy, especially in the beginning. I think it could have been easy to sit in bed and watch TV. Fortunately for me, having kids did not allow that.

The final piece of my healing puzzle was building a stronger belief in the long-term future. Having faith that I will see Lisa again has given me the ability to enjoy this life more fully. That may sound counterintuitive. Maybe it’s like an upcoming vacation. Enjoying day-to-day life is easy when you know that you have something really exciting to look forward to.

So many people hurt for so many reasons. My hope is that they will find tools to move them forward. The darkness can be suffocating, but with hard work and time, there’s a whole lot of light to find.

Have We Said Enough?

Valentine’s Day, 2010, was ten days before Lisa died.  Although it’s been five years, cupid brings back vivid, vivid memories.

In many ways, it is my hardest grief day of the year.  The reminder that it is coming is blasted everywhere I turn:  on TV, in the grocery store, billboards – even Jiffy Lube has an oil change coupon special for your sweetheart!

The last dinner my girls and I ate with Lisa was on Valentine’s Day.  Of course we didn’t know that would be the case, but deep down, maybe we had a hunch.

It was an odd evening.  Lisa and I were trying so hard to be happy for three excited kids.

Yeah, yeah, it’s Valentine’s Day!  Candy, candy!  Love in the air.  Ignore the fact that your beloved mother in the seat beside you is hooked up to a morphine drip and dying from cancer.

As difficult as it is to face this annual reminder, February 14, 2010, ended up bringing me the greatest gift I ever received.  It gave me what I needed to take the steps  to put my life back together.

It was this day that prompted Lisa to write me a note.  Although I knew my wife loved me, she was not one to gush.  But this note encapsulated her feelings about me.  The last sentence she wrote was:

You are the husband, father, soul mate and friend that I want – never been another.  I love you very much.  Lisa

If I died tomorrow, I wonder if the people around me would know how I feel about them.

I have a buddy, Steve, who occasionally texts with the message, “I love you.”  When I see him, he says the same.

Another dear friend, Brad, and I hug and share the same sentiment.  His wife occasionally rolls her eyes at our mushiness.

I pick on people who mean a lot to me – just ask those in the offices next to mine at the YMCA.  Do my co-workers understand how much they mean to me?  I spend more time with them than any other friends and often more time than I spend with my family.  Do those at church know how much I look forward to seeing them each week?  Can the girls see my love through the nagging?

I’d like there to be no question in the minds of those who mean the most to me.

I’m not sure why it is sometimes so hard to express love.  It makes us squirmy and uncomfortable.  I’ve been the recipient of unfettered expression.  Lisa and I were given that chance.  Had she died in an automobile accident, that would not have been the case.

I have lived the past five years with a lack of guilt or regret about my relationship with my wife.  She let me know I was what she needed.  And yet, at times I still struggle with sharing how much I appreciate and care for others.  If it is tough for me, I imagine it might be even harder for those who have not experienced the joy of knowing that someone you loved so much loved you so much in return.

Who Is To Blame?

frustrated-customer

I left Time Warner last summer because that company is run by Satan’s angels.  When I tried to sever ties with them, they would not let me go.  It was like Jim Jones in Guyana.  When they offered me Kool-aid to stay, I ran… hard and fast.

After weeks of trying to break free, Beelzebub told me I would receive a refund of $240.  When the check came for only $170 I was frustrated.  After four, hour-plus long phone calls and me repeating my story, time and time again, I gave up.

“Moe, the last customer service representative I talked to, told me I would get $240.  On October, 16, at 10:37 PM, Larry, the one before Moe,told me the same thing. Curly, are telling me you don’t owe me the money???”

“Yes.  We do not owe you that money.  We owed you $170 and it is paid.”

“Why did Moe and Larry both tell me the check would be for $270?”

“I do not know.  They were wrong.”

“You record these conversations don’t you?”

“Yes.”

“I want you to go back in your recordings and listen to my phone calls with Moe and Larry!  Do it!  Now!”

“Those are for internal use only.”

“Then internally listen!!!”

At the end of that conversation, I decided one of three things was going to happen:

1)  I was going to kill someone

2)  I was going to have a stroke, heart attack or aneurysm and die myself

3)  I was going to have to give up and take up meditation

I chose number 3 primarily because I have a full-time job and had to work instead of answering questions with the automated attendance just to be re-asked the same questions repeatedly by the customer service agent.

I switched to AT&T last summer.  It had nothing to do with the 24-year-old blonde door to door saleswoman with the light pink low-cut t-shirt who sat with me on my front porch sipping lemonade and discussing my frustrations with Time Warner.  Delilah convinced me that her company, AT&T, would be better – we slit our arms and pressed our blood together.  She was my savior.  She had come to set me free.

For the first 30 days AT&T and I lived in pure harmony.  My internet worked without disruption.  My cable never failed, and I had HBO – not just for a free 30 day trial, but, for LIFE!  And for less money.

Every time I turned on my Insignia I thought of Delilah.  She peppered my nightly dreams, like a spirited fairy.

And then, my phone line began to go out.  No dial tone.  Dead.

I’d call, patiently wading through the automated voice system.

Please describe in a few words why you’re calling.  You can use terms like, “technical assistance or account information.”

The first ten calls I was patient.  “Technical assistance,” I kindly uttered.

Is the problem with your cable, phone, internet or all of your services?

“My phone.”

Is the problem happening all the time?

“Yes.  It is happening all of the time.”

AT&T sent servicemen to my house three different times.  Finally, Steve decided that is was not AT&T’s fault, it was ADT’s fault, my alarm company.

I called ADT.  They told me it was not their fault.  They said It was AT&T’s fault.

I decided to bring the two together to solve our problem, like sorting out problems with my kids.

I called ADT to set a collaborative meeting at my house.  They were good for Thursday evening.

I called AT&T.  They could not come on Thursday evening.  They could come on Monday evening.

I called ADT back.  They told me they could not do Monday evening because they did not have evening appointments.  I told them that I had scheduled an evening appointment five days earlier.  They assured me that they never had evening appointments.

“But you did last week!  I had an appointment scheduled for Thursday evening?  Now you are telling me you don’t have evening hours?”

“Yes.  We do not have evening hours.”

“But you did last week.  Did you change your policy this week?”

“Sir, we do not offer evening hours in your zip code.”

“BUT YOU DID LAST WEEK!  I HAVE NOT MOVED!  MY ZIP CODE HAS NOT CHANGED!!”

We finally agreed on Saturday.  Both could come between 8 AM and noon.

AT&T came at 8.  They blamed ADT.

ADT showed up at noon.  They blamed AT&T.

The ADT guy is tied to a chair in my basement.  I am going to feed him and allow him bathroom breaks every six hours.  But his ass is not leaving my house until the AT&T guy comes back.  We will resolve this problem.

Batman, Right Here In Raleigh

bow ties

Lisa’s grandfather died in 1992.  We weren’t married yet, but we were headed in that direction.

When Lisa’s mother cleaned out his belongings, she came across several bow ties.  She asked me if I wanted them.  I worked at the Y, so I figured at some point I could use them, for a day camp skit if nothing else.

At the time, I only knew one full-time bow tie wearer.  It was Willis Brown, an attorney in my hometown of Fayetteville, NC.  Every Sunday he’d stroll into church with a crisp white shirt, a three-piece suit and one of his seemingly infinite ties.  I admired his style.  I admired his gutsiness.  Not too many dudes from Fayetteville had enough panache to pull that off.

I too took my virgin bow tie ride at church.  I figured it was a safe group – I mean they were coming together under the auspices of love and acceptance – even for weirdos who wore odd clothing.

The reaction was more than what I had expected, an outpouring of interest and support.  Person after person complimented my boldness.   It was my first step toward Willisness.

Now the bow tie is as common as a pair of flip-flops.  You look around the sanctuary at 11 AM on the day of rest, and you’ll find a sea of them.

I hate looking like every other Tom, Dick or Harry.  I like to stand out, to be a little different.  I’ve pondered the ascot, but that just seems like I’m trying too hard.  But in late December, I was given a gift – the gift of uniqueness.

Part of my intrigue with performing in the play, A Christmas Carol, each December is that I get to dress up in 19th century costume.  My favorite parts of the attire are the top hat and… the cape.  I love to strut around backstage pretending to be Dracula enveloping my children beneath the flowing fabric.  In a cape, you feel bigger than life.  As you walk down a hall, your presence seems to linger behind you.  Your body can be several feet in front of the rest of you.  It’s commanding!  It’s bold!  It’s powerful.

I can assure you Batman’s cape was not chosen because of its ability to help him fly.   No – his cape was a statement.  You don’t want to mess with me – I’m a badass.  I’m wearing a cape.

My fellow cast members understand my obsession with the cloak.  And that is why this year’s stage wife worked with the costumers to make me my own.  One that I could take home – that I could wear anytime I wanted!  It was presented to me on the last night of the show.

cape

I’ve pulled it out a couple of times but in comfortable safe settings.  However, in the future, if you see a guy walking through downtown Raleigh sporting a top of the line, navy ulster, it’s likely me.  In 20 years, it might be you too!

 

Awkward and Beautiful

womens-underwear-292

Sometimes you gotta do stuff you don’t particularly want to do. For my ninth grader, it’s shopping for underwear with her father.

I don’t rotate mine as often as I should.  I just get so attached to them.

Perhaps it is my bad example that puts us in the panty pinch.  I have a specific test for tossing my intimates.  When jogging, it sometimes feels like my shorts are falling off.  If I look down and my pants are intact, I realize it’s my boxers that have gone south underneath my sweats.  Although preferable to the alternative, I’d rather the inner layer slide down while running down Ridge Road than the outer, this sensation is my signal:  this pair must go.  Elastic is such an important part of the underpant.

Stephanie came to me last weekend with an urgent need for an undie upgrade.  She reluctantly chose to hit the mall immediately, rather than wait for her aunt or another viable female to schedule a trip.

As we walked through the doors of Crabtree Valley Mall at 8 PM on a Tuesday night, she grabbed my hand, “It is so embarrassing to do this with your dad.  I so hope I don’t see anyone I know.”

“There are other things I’d rather be doing too, like digging or welding.  But baby, we’re just making memories.  Twenty years from now we’ll remember this night – our first trip to Victoria’s Secret.”

They had a sale, 5 pair for $27.  Finding her size and the style she liked was a challenge.  Although there seemed to be designated slots for each type, it looked like an underwear tornado had touched down on that table.  They were all mixed together.  It was like trying to find a specific pea in a crock pot of vegetable soup.

Men’s boxers are in packages, sized by waist.  Women’s aren’t.  Some mediums would have barely fit over my head (no, I didn’t try).  Others would have fit William Howard Taft.

“Stephanie, I think you need to try these on – we need a baseline.”

You’d have thought I’d suggested she run naked through the store.

“Dad.  I’m NOT trying on underwear at the store!”

“Whatever.”

I held each pair up, opening the waist to see if I thought It would fit.  In the end we bought ten.

I actually cherish these moments – the ones that other dads don’t get to experience.  They’re awkward, uncomfortable, funny… and beautiful.

One More Thing I’m Bad At

I sort of thought I was beyond the point where I was going to find things I was bad at as a “mom.”  I mean, it is clear that fashion for teenage females is not a strength.  Navigating and understanding the girls’ friendships is also a struggle for me.  The list of things that my wife could do better with raising daughters would be about the same length as the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Unfortunately, last week, we discovered another.

Two months ago I received an email informing me that I needed to send five photos to be included in the end of year slide show for the mother/daughter charity league that DJ has been a member of since she was in 7th grade.  Aunt Sallie has been the stand in mom for the past few years.

The deadline for submitting the photos was January 5.  So, on January 4th I began digging through Shutterfly and Facebook to find pics that I felt would be appropriate representations of DJ’s life and interests.

This was my thinking:

Pic #1:  Lisa and DJ, for it is a mother/daughter club and they did start it together.

Bailey Ham 3

Pic #2:  DJ and Aunt Sallie, for Sallie is her stand in mom for the National Charity League.

Bailey Ham 4

Pic #3:  DJ and me, for I have received the 29,652 emails about this club for the past five years and I deserve some credit.  I know this one is a bit unconventional, but I felt it captured our relationship fairly well.

1922424_1019768088039087_1295779049677848252_n

Pic #4:  DJ sailing at Camp Seafarer – sailing is cool; she loves camp; lots of girls in NCL go to camp.

Bailey sailing 2

Pic #5:  DJ, in full costume at our annual performance of A Christmas Carol – which has been a huge part of our lives for the past four years.

10750018_10202952131316609_3898885381068994551_o

While I was at it, I ordered some photos for my photo album.

When they arrived, I proudly displayed them on the coffee table.  Smart dad!  Ordered photos so all can remember their childhood!  What a Lisa thing to do.

I was quite dismayed when my daughters began informing me how much they hated some of the pictures I had ordered.

“Oooo.  That is a horrible photo of me.  You ARE NOT framing that one!”

“But I LOVE that picture.  You look so cute.”

DJ nearly had a stroke when she saw the photo from A Christmas Carol in her Chimney Sweep getup.

“Dad, where did this come from?  It’s terrible.”

“Well I like it.  In fact, it is one of the photos I sent in for the NCL slide show.  It is one of my favorites.”

STOP THE BUS.

I’m sure parents of teenaged girls can imagine the next ten minutes in our house.  I was berated.  The pic was forwarded to friends who confirmed that I was an idiot and inept at choosing senior slide show pictures.  I was informed that DJ was taking over the next deadline, the yearbook ad, which also called for photograph selection and the crafting of a public message.

She then discovered that I had sent the sailing pic which was apparently a selfie.  I had no idea that you were not to send selfies in for senior slide shows.  I looked back at the original email, and that was not outlined as a guideline for photo selection.

She went as far as to text the Christmas Carol picture to one of her stand in moms with this message:

Dad sent this picture in for a senior slide show.  This is why I need a mother!

Had there been a fifty year old woman at the house that night, I believe she would have made me get married on the spot simply to insure there would be someone else to help guide me through the next four months.

I will say that one of her sweet friends told her that although she totally agreed with DJ about the picture, she could sort of see why a father might think it was a sweet picture of his daughter.

Go Kimmy!

I also informed DJ that the difference between her mother and me was that I would send in new slides and ask to delete the ones she did not like.  Had Lisa incorrectly chosen, she would have told DJ to suck it up and go to her room.

I wish I had more chutzpah.

PS: DJ did give me permission to put these photos on my blog because “only old people read it.”

Purchase Danny’s Book Laughter, Tears and Braids: Amazon or Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh

I love some Michael Coors

michael-kors-michael-peep-toe-platform-sandals-leighton-high-heels-462906

It’s that time of year again.  Time to find the costume for the Winter Formal.  It’s in two weeks.  Both DJ and Stephanie have dates, which is no easy feat at an all girls’ school.  Appropriate clothing may be a more difficult challenge this year.

I took Stephanie to six dress stores last weekend.  If it had arm and neck holes, we tried it on.  Salesclerks give me the oddest stares.  I know they wonder why this dude is the sole adult with teenaged girls in their boutique.  I want to wear a sign across my chest:  Wife died, shut your pie hole.  Instead I try to act like I know what I’m doing, like Clinton from What Not To Wear:

“Texture…nice.”

“Shuuuut-Up!”

“Fit IS everything.”

“A line, much better than the B line.”

After a frustrating Saturday, I sent DJ on the prowl.  Within 30 minutes of their departure, I got a text with a pic of THE dress.  I thought Stephanie had it on backwards because the zipper was in the front.  Why would you need a zipper in the front?  It’s not a jacket.  You ain’t gonna need to get it off in a hurry!

Whatever…

This weekend we tackled shoes.  I took her to a store I thought was called DWI – but it’s actually DSW.  There were so many shoes there it upset my stomach.  I was overwhelmed.  I felt dizzy.  I didn’t know where to start.

I felt like a bird; I headed for sparkly shoes.  That’s what she used to like.

“Dad.  I haven’t worn sparkling shoes since I dressed up like Snow White, Halloween of 2004.”

Although she told me, I kept being drawn to shoes with jewels on them.

“Dad – DO NOT PICK OUT ONE MORE SHINY SHOE!  I AM NOT WEARING SEQUINS TO THE DANCE, especially on my feet!”

I pulled boxes off the shelf,she tried them on.  I then took pictures and sent them to DJ.

She responded to my first text:  “Put them back now!  They actually made me throw up a little bit.”

They weren’t that bad.

We finally settled on two pair, both returnable, both by Michael Coors.  I liked that cause he makes beer too.

When we got them home, I was told one pair looked like a 50-year-old lady and the other like a Hay Street prostitute.

“Well she must be good because these puppies were expensive.”

The crazy thing is that when DJ returned from her first dance at St. Mary’s School, I asked her if her feet hurt.  Her response?  “Oh no.  We took them off the minute we walked in the door.”

I’m gonna send her behind in bedroom slippers.  Shiny bedroom slippers.

New Year’s Eve and the IRS

In 1997, I ushered in New Years in Washington, DC.  I remember it well.  I have a photo of Lisa, me and the two other friends who joined us on that trip.

Lisa was pregnant with DJ but rallied for a long night that concluded with a 2 AM Metro ride Metro back to our hotel.  On our walk to our stop, my bladder was about to burst.  I had few options walking down Pennsylvania Avenue in the wee hours of the night but noticed a couple of trees ahead of me in front of a large white limestone building.   As I pondered my choices, I took full advantage.   As I walked up to the elm, I noticed the words cut into the cornerstone of the French Renaissance facade: Internal Revenue Service.

Yes, at 2 in the morning on January 1, 1997, I tinkled on the IRS.

I got no issues with our government or paying my fair share of taxes, but I will have to say there was something very rewarding about that act.

In December, my high school senior, DJ Tanner, asked if she could go to DC for New Year’s Eve with a friend.   I wasn’t excited about the two of them driving up there alone, but they were staying with the other girl’s extended family.  And frankly, I would much rather her be up there happy, than with the rest of the family miserable.

I gave her the dad speech:

  • Be responsible
  • Be aware and safe
  • Don’t spend too much money
  • Don’t pee on any governmental facilities

-all the normal things a parent worries about.

With some prying, I got a decent summary of the trip when she returned home on New Year’s afternoon.  DJ, who has a knack for knocking out some pretty neat videos, took the photos from their adventure and tossed together his short film:

I love social media when used to give me a glimpse into my kids’ lives.  I also love that there are no photos of the IRS building in this montage.

Parking? At Target? At Christmas???

parking jam

I found myself in the undesirable position of shopping on December 23.  It made me so stinking mad!

Discount the long lines at the register, the lack of percentage off on any item that I desired, and my inability to make a purchasing decision; I was already miserable because I could hardly get into the parking lot.

I started at North Hills Mall, a relatively new outdoor complex.  On the back corner is a Target.  I spend $118 there each week of my life.

I don’t know why, but every time I go, the sales clerk informs me that the total is $118.  Target is so sophisticated that I scan my card and sign that I agree to the purchase before the employee even finishes scanning my items, so I can’t back out of it.  Whatever the total, I’ve committed, I’m in.  And it is usually $118.

I believe that a polite regular customer like me should be able to call in advance and reserve a parking place near the front.  I mean, I’m there on a rainy Tuesday in February at 8:30 PM when no one else in the world is thinking about giving them $118.  Shouldn’t they stand by me two days before Christmas when I’m at my most vulnerable purchasing moment?

“Hello.  This is Danny Tanner, #118.  I’m tired, frustrated and in a hurry.”

“We’ll have your spot coned off.  Pull up right beside the basket return on row 2.”

It doesn’t have to be THE closest space, just top 20.

You’d think they’d offer that service.  But no.  I’m out there scrapping for an 8 foot by 12 foot space just like every other Tom, Dick and Harry – those damn dudes who haven’t graced the Target since last December.  It’s like the once a year church goers.  Where were you in July when the baby Jesus was 7 months old?

On the 23rd, I had to park six miles away from the front entrance.  Even the spots reserved for “Parents with Children” were taken.  I am a parent, and I have children.  None of them were with me, but I was gonna park there anyway – nope, it was minivan city, not an opening to be found.

In the parking deck, there were three great spots.  I approached all thinking I’d won the jackpot only to discover the sorry putz parked next door had crossed the painted line so far that there was no way to squeeze my mid-sized SUV in the space.  I was livid!  It is a time like this that I would like to put my car in park, get out and rake my house key down the entire driver’s side of the asphalt bogart’s vehicle.

And what is up with the “C” spaces.  Compact cars get priority?  I tried parking in one of those at Crabtree Valley but we all had to climb out the back hatch of the car.  That ain’t cool, especially if you’re on a date.

Oh, and what about the always open reserved spots for plug-in cars?  There is a 1 to 2,456 electric car to reserved electric car parking space ratio in the City of Raleigh.  I would love to park my car, hook it up to a gas pump, and come back in an hour with a free full tank.  What is up with that?

I finally found a space, well sort of.  It was half a space right beside the curb and the mulched evergreen border.  I parked two wheels on concrete and two on the greenery.  I have that same plant by my driveway, and you can’t kill it.  DJ backs over it daily and the stuff is a hearty as the day before she turned 16.

It ended up being fine, because I hadn’t jogged that morning.  I got my three miles in, did not commit vandalism and purchased everyone’s favorite candy.

Next year I’m gonna start shopping in February.  Anyone know the shelf life of Snickers?

 

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