Monday, June 13, 2011

Odds and Ends, Mostly Odds


Due to the sparkling US economy, the company Martha works for has gone elsewhere in the world to find business. They finished a large contract in Panama City and have new ones in Brazil, Down Under, and


I looked up from my spaghetti and meatballs flambé (that's a nice way of saying dinner was burned) and asked, "Sylvania? Where, exactly, is Sylvania?"

"It's one of those countries near Yugoslavia. I have the address at work," Martha said.

"Do you mean Slovenia?" I suggested.

"Yeah, that's it! Geeze, Sylvania is where Dracula's from," she said, slapping her forehead while crunching on a forkful of spaghetti.

Martha is so darn cute when she's geographically- (and historically)-challenged. I didn't have the heart to tell her that Sylvania is a town in Finland where they make lightbulbs.

*   *   *

Some dark humor is always good for me, so I'll tell you about my funeral plans—that is, if  by chance I die one of these years.

Actually, I won't be having a funeral because I don't do church. Rather, Martha wants to hold a tasteful memorial service, so I've scribbled out a tentative plan for her.

2:25 p.m.: Attendees enter (estimated 3-4) and plop their rear-ends on a folding chair (consider a chair fee if anyone needs two or more).

2:30 p.m.: Opening song.

2:35 p.m.: Glowing testimonials about me from the attendees.

2:37 p.m.: Since everyone is too shy to glow or testify in front of people, then Closing song.

2:40 p.m.: Leavature.

Short, sweet, and out in fifteen minutes. That's the kind of memorial service I like.

You know, maybe I should leave the planning to Martha. She'll know what she wants to do.

*  *  *


Without an iota of doubt in my mind, I live in the dumbest state of all 52 of 'em (Iraq and Afganistan are the two newest). I live in Arizona, where

1. A gigantic wildfire is now burning down New Mexico. After two weeks, the fire is 10% contained.

2. The rainfall for the Phoenix metroplex has been one-half inch since January 1.

3. When it's this dry, most of the cities cancel their commercial 4th of July fireworks displays for fire safety.

4. The Arizona legislature doesn't give a shit about fire safety. This year, it passed a bill allowing the private sale of fireworks to individuals. No firecrackers, but plenty of stuff that flies into the sky. And burns the hands and faces off idiot kids. And start fires, especially if they tangle with all these tall palm trees.

5. Yesterday, the fireworks sales tents were setting up in the same locations where Christmas trees are sold—three weeks before the 4th of July. I wonder if the owners of these tents are members of the Arizona legislature; because of the sparkling AZ economy, graft has been down the past couple years.

6. Dumb.

*  *   *

Click flick for actual size.

The mood was subdued around here last week with the passing of Molly. Thank y'all from Martha and me for your kind comments. I think we all gave the little critter a nice send-off.

In the middle of the week we received a sympathy card from the vet with this inside: a double impression of Molly's paw print. And then the tears started again . . .

Martha will be on the trail very soon for another rescue dog. There are so many who had "good" homes and then got dumped when the housing house of cards collapsed. The poor creatures are so lost, lonely, and confused, just like Irish was when we adopted him. We'll letcha know when we have a new family member.


hope said...

Didn't mean to laugh at your beloved but as soon as I heard Sylvania all I could think of was, "Those danged huge blue flashbulbs that use to burn the crap out of your hands when an adult asked you to be "helpful" and dispose of it.  :)

Charlie, you make put the FUN in funeral....but don't go any time soon.  :)

Thank you for volunteering your state to be dumber than mine: SC.  Personally, I hope Amazon has a free shipping weekend so we can send the Governor somewhere.  Maybe she could help you put out fires when she's not starting them here.  (Insert slap to forehead).

It's hard to lose a family member like Molly.  Just about the time I thought I would be okay, the Vet's office sent a card.  Worded as if the dog was speaking, in effect it said "My time here with you was brief, but while we were together, it was heaven on earth."

I bawled like a baby.  Here, have an extra hug.

Mapstew said...

Ya, that's my type of FUNeral! I wanted mine to be held in my local bar but the damn place closed down last night! (My 50th birthday party had been held there the night before!)

Have a good week Charles!  :¬)


savannah said...

charlie, charlie, charlie! your funeral plans are so much better than mine! here's my deal: cremation and then, a catapult across the savannah river! followed by a big party of course. xoxoxoxo

p.s. i can't even talk about the vet's card without crying! xoxox

Kid-at-heart said...

There's a tiny little borough in PA --less than a square mile in area, approximately 200 inhabitants--called Sylvania.  Sylvania, Pennsylvania. I have cousins there.

Ponita said...

You've gotta have a wake, Charlie! A humdinger of a party... and if you arrange to have it broadcast live online, we'll all be there!!! That way, you won't need more chairs, but there'll be lots of us to send you off. Of course, that won't happen anytime soon, now will it???

I had to laugh about Sylvania too! And cry at Molly's paw prints. I've had cards like that from vets too. It's such a touching memento. Hugs to you and Martha all over again. xoxoxo

Djanstewart said...

What a gift your posts are, Charlie. I enjoyed every part of this one, and I also got to cry about Molly. It is a very kind vet you go to, and I do hope you get a rescue dog soon...

I laughed about Sylvania, too...

Sydlaughs said...

We received a card from the vet last week when Timmi, our yellow lab died.  I am glad that you are adopting a rescue dog. There are so many that need loving homes. Sorry about the loss of your Molly. It is hard to lose our "babies".

TechnoBabe . said...

What is the 2:30 pm opening song to be sung  or played?

Wonder what is going on right now. Hubby and I are reading about so many family dogs passing on lately. Really, a lot of them.

It is difficult to even comment rationally about the fireworks sales. The fire in AZ is what we check on every morning when we get up. We have family there and people like you and Martha that we care about. Arizona has been in the news this past year for such horrendous reasons. My heart goes out to all of you.

Hugs to you and Martha.

Charlie Callahan said...

"Babies" is right—and I was a big one last week. I'm so sorry to hear about Timmi, and I've added his photo as a tribute.

Charlie Callahan said...

So they make lightbulbs there, or pizza pies?

FAY said...

Oh, for crying in a bucket!  Sylvania is a county in Africa that invented televisions.
Will there be food at your memorial service or should I bring a sandwich?
I'm very sorry about Molly's departure from this world.  But what a lucky dog to have had you both.

Pat said...

Well I'm with Martha.  Of course Sylvania is where Dracula's from.
I look forward to hearing about your lucky little addition to the family.

Robert said...

Charlie, you only allotted two minutes for your testimonials! I'd tack on at least another three minutes. I'm sure people could find a few more nice things to say about you and still have time for a moment of silence.

Fireworks don't go on sale in Oregon until a few days before the 4th. Do it too soon and they are too rain soaked to light.

Charlie Callahan said...

Well I'll be hornswoggled! You're absolutely correct about Sylvania—I finally got off my dead posterior and looked it up on that Goople thing.

Sure, bring a sammich. Something Southern, like sweet potato and catfish on Wonder bread.

And thanks, Fay, for your condolences. Molly may have been lucky to have us, but we were equally lucky to have her for fourteen years.

Charlie Callahan said...

Boy, Hope, you read the whole thing! I'm honored,

I forgot all about parent torture with hot flash bulbs and those horrilbe flashcubes. Thanks for reminding me.

One of these days we should have a dumb state contest. Most of them are down at the bottom, but Arizona will remain the FIRST dumbest.

Regarding Molly, I'll take that extra hug.

Charlie Callahan said...

Your local bar closed DOWN—you must be devastated! That's a whole lot worse than turning 50!

barbara said...

Vets sure do things right, don't they?  We received the most touching cards from ours as well, after our last two cats passed.  In fact, I want my vet to organize my funeral.

Charlie Callahan said...

There won't be a coffin, Kim, so no web cam so you can watch me rot.

Charlie Callahan said...

I too will be cremated, but no catapulting—if I landed in the water my ashes would drown because I can't swim. No, I'm going to spend my time in a nice air-conditioned mausoleum.

No pun intended, but that card with the little one's paw prints was a killer.

Charlie Callahan said...

Kim Ayres suggested an online wake several months ago, but here I still be. Keep Kim in mind when the time comes.

And I think you and Map should be in charge of refreshments—Labatts and Guinness in kegs and maybe some cookies or mixed nuts or something to eat.

I love to make you laugh, but I hate to make you cry. I guess life is made up of both.

Charlie Callahan said...

Jan, you're always say such nice things about me! I'm just glad that you like my posts.

Charlie Callahan said...

I think both you and Martha are somewhat incorrect: Dracula is from Pennsylvania.

You'll be one of the first to know when we find a rescue who's compatible with Irish.

Charlie Callahan said...

That's it! No testimonials, just silence. And maybe a cookie, which would negate the silence.

And a pox on all fireworks, except the commerical shows. Buttheads will be setting them off that entire weeikend, and they scare both the dog and me.

Charlie Callahan said...

Good point, Macy. I think it's the newbie states hands down—which also belong to the UK and Canada.

Charlie Callahan said...

I would like the song "Going Home", shown in the video, to be the opening song. I have the words typed out so people can sing alone. Ultimately, T-Babe, we're all going home, wherever  that may be..

Brenda said...

I am so sorry for your grief. I know. I've been there; and even knowing prior...I still grieved the loss of my dog. Then the card came, then the paw print, then the anniversary. And although; I clearly am aware he still comes around... I still miss him.

My thoughts are with you; Professor!