To give you just a little idea of how confused and utterly "out of it" I am, I cannot even get the smallest thing right.
Case in point: is it blue box week, or black box week?
In our fair city, we alternate between recycling plastics one week, paper the other. It's the city's awesome and entirely economically-minded way to save a penny by forcing its residents to fill their bins to the brim, then buy another bin because one is almost never enough to last two weeks. Bins break because you try to stuff them as full as they can be filled, and then you fill them some more, and then they break, and then you swear loudly, and then your neighbours shun you even more.
The big question around our house most every week is: Is it black box or blue box? And god knows why no one can ever keep it straight from one week to the next. We never know. Every week, it's as if it's the first week ever of having to figure out which box it is, because we all look at each other come Wednesday evening, as if it's the first time we've ever had to even think about boxes in even a general sense, and start wondering which colour box we're supposed to put out to the curb. You'd never know our house contains a gifted student, and two adults with degrees.
And, while we're on the subject of coloured boxes, why couldn't they have come up with nicer colours for our recycling boxes? Like, maybe a bright fuchsia for paper, and maybe a dark spring green for plastics. You know, something a little jazzier, a little happier. Because god knows we all need a little more happiness and jazz in this life of ours.
Anyway, it was Wednesday evening, and it's Dee's responsibility to put out the garbage. And, as usual, he asks which box it is. And I, being the astute one of the family, always know which colour it is. Just like I know when it's time to change the guinea pig cage, or how I know when one of the kids isn't telling the truth, or how I know when Mr. Handsome has something up his sleeve. I just know.
So, Dee asks, and I answer, fully confident that I am once again totally in the know, totally omniscient, the goddess of all that is anything. "It's black box, sweetie," I tell him, in my goddess-like motherly voice that brings birds from afar to light on my shoulders, and the sun's rays to shine down on me from the heavens.
Thursday morning, we watch as truck after truck go by our house, not one stopping to pick up our garbage, nor our black box. Yes, this is how we spend our Thursday mornings. Exciting, I know. You too can do this when you unemployed! Believe me, it's as good as lying on a beach in Hawaii with a mai tai in either hand.
"Why are all the trucks just going by our house, Mommy?" Dee asks.
"Oh, they're probably picking up leaf bags," I say, fully confident in my judgment.
Dee peeks out the window and notices an overturned blue box at the neighbour's, which he mentions to me, nonchalantly.
"Blue box? BLUE BOX?! Why would they have a blue box out?" I ask, shocked that anyone would put their paper out in a blue box instead of the regulated BLACK box. How uncouth of them, our neighbours who love to come over to our property and clean it. I make a mental note to write them a little message and slip it into their mailbox at the first opportunity, reminding them that black boxes are for papers, NOT blue. God.
Then I command Dee to take a look down the street, just in case, and make sure everyone else has their black boxes out. Dee does as I request, while I check the online site just to ensure that I am indeed correct, as I always am, of course.
Dee comes back inside to tell me, just as I simultaneously discover, that it is indeed BLUE BOX week, and NOT black box week. What. The. Hell.
I am shocked beyond disbelief. How could this be? How could I be so wrong? So very, very wrong.
Once again, we are the laughing stock of the neighbourhood. We, who need the neighbours to come and clean our lawn, and scoff at our longer-than-a-millimetre grass, who never invite us to any of the neighbourhood parties...
We are once again (and still) the bane of everyone's existence. And, alas, I am possibly not the goddess of all knowledge, as I thought I was.
I am a 46-year-old mom of two amazing children and wife to a wonderful and very patient man, and a lucky friend to many. I am a Realtor and a writer, but have also been a journalist, editor, and daycare provider. Not every day is a good day, but I sure try to keep smiling.