Wednesday, October 24, 2012

I like your smile

That's how it began. That's not how it ended.

When you meet someone, you begin to look at them with how they'll fit into your life, and how you'll fit into theirs.

Some relationships end in marriage, others disaster. And others still, are bad enough to be categorized as funny. 

You may know him, or merely know of his name, but in this blog, he shall be known as Sarturo.

At our first meeting, it was a little like this:

We would talk for hours, amazed at the things we had in common, almost like we had known each other for years verses days. 
It seemed too good to be true. 

And it was. There was always some concern in the back of my mind, some nagging doubt about something that wouldn't go away. But what was it?

Hello animals.

I asked Sarturo to read my blog about dear Jack Spitz. He did not. When we were on an outing a month ago, I shared Jack's tumultuous story, and received a generic, feigned interest response (we girls can always tell). But what was a girl to do? The guy was great otherwise, so I pressed on, hoping that in his heart of hearts, he really did care about my pets.

But then, my beloved Labrador, Cadie, dog of mine for almost 9 years became ill. I shared my concern with Sarturo, and there was little to no reaction.

I took Cadie to the vet clinic, where she was diagnosed with diabetes (fasting blood sugar of 541). Dealing with insulin, schedule changes, food changes, I hoped that boyfriend of mine would inquire about the results of my dog's blood tests.

Nothing. Silence. 

So, I filled him in, hoping that once the news hit, he would take it from there and ask how she's doing, much like every other friend on the planet who was privy to my dogs recent diagnosis did. 


I gently reminded him after a few weeks, that if he's going to care for and about me, then my hope is that he will also care about the events transpiring in my life. It makes somewhat of an impact with Sarturo, I will admit. Sort of like a pebble being thrown at a piece of metal.

Next came Andy, Golden Retriever extraordinaire. My best veterinarian animal partner, Andy and I worked thousands of hours together during my duration at the vet clinic. Sadly friends, he had to be euthanized on October 12th. I didn't get to say goodbye to my sweet boy. When I heard the news, I was heartbroken. While I did not raise Andy from puppy-hood, I can clearly say that I loved him as my own. Andy loved me, and I loved him.

Sharing the saddening news with Sarturo generated a flat line response. A few "oh's" and that portion of my sad story was done. He didn't care. Actually, he changed the subject.

I began to wonder: Is this normal?

In case you're wondering, the answer is no.

I had some wild turkeys take refuge in my yard the last week, and upon sharing the delightful news with Sarturo, I was informed that I should shoot them, freeze them, and sell them. Now don't get me wrong, I can take a good joke, but this conversation initiated the demise of our relationship.

When we first began dating, I asked Sarturo about his views on hunting. He told me he didn't enjoy it; too costly, too much effort, and not worth it. Satisfied, I took that as the truth. However, after the topic of turkeys came up, I discovered that Sarturo likes killing:
  • Pheasants
  • Prairie dogs
  • Racoons
  • Wood peckers
  • Bunnies (he called them that, not me)
Why? Well, not for food, which makes sense for most hunters. He kills the aforementioned creatures because they are "nuisances". 

After seeing that I was a little bit horrified, he asked me this question:
"What if you were driving, and you hit a cat? Would you pull over and see if it was okay, or keep on driving?"

1) I like animals
2) I worked at a vet clinic for almost four years. What do you think I'd do?!

I tell him I'd check on the animal's welfare. He looks at me like I told him I'd sacrifice it to satan.

Carefully, I ask him, "Sarturo, what would you do?"
"I'd keep on driving, wondering what the cat was doing in the road to begin with."

(Side note: Pretty sure I read somewhere that someone who delights in killing animals, and believe me, he does, is how serial killers begin. Just saying).

(Second side note: This question/answer was later modified to include dogs, and Sarturo would still do a hit and run).

Emboldened, I ask, "Well, what do you think I should have done with my dog, since she now has diabetes?"

He responds that I should have euthanized her, due to the cost of her medical care, which P.S. really isn't that bad. After a moment, he asks "wait, how much would a euthanasia cost?" I quote a price, and he tells me that I really should have just "taken her out to the backyard and shot her".

Naturally, we decided to take a few days off to think about things, though I did end our conversation telling Sarturo that this bit of news is definitely a deal-breaker.

So, three days go by, and I get the occasional text from him. Everything I text to him generates the same response:
Me: "I got two job offers today!"
S: "Cool"
Me: "Hey, hope your day is going well"
S: "Cool"
Me: "Got my math homework done!"
S: "Cool"

Ladies, this is the relationship dreams are made of!

Thursday night, we reconvened. 

Sarturo informed me that he tried, tried to understand why I was ever sad about Andy, but it's not like I raised him  or anything. 

He told me that any monetary investment in an animal is "extreme" and an animal is a wasted investment. That is, any money spent on veterinary care, pet food, even a leash is outrageous. At the end of the day, it's just an animal.

Also, he told me that it seems like I would love an animal more than a human, placing them above my future husband and children. (Which is weird, because not too long ago, someone told me they were shocked that I had even the remotest amount of love in my heart for animals because I just don't come across that way.)

But perhaps the best quote of the night was:
"I don't like animals. That's it".

That's it? Who doesn't like animals, domesticated or wild? He told me that he "doesn't dislike killing things". Who wants to kill just because?

And so, Monday night, I received a final phone call from Sarturo. I really let him have it, too, telling him that his dislike of animals is a little extreme, uncompassionate, and that I've never met anyone who hates animals. Where's the love? 

He told me that loving animals was "not built" into him. He also told me that hello, where he's from, you hunt to eat.

I stated that I've never heard of eating racoons and woodpeckers, but hey, if that floats his boat, go for it! 

....that didn't go over well. 

Readers, I may or may not have hinted that he's this country's next serial killer, and I may or may not have told him that whenever I think of him, I will think of him as the jerk from the state he is from.

Blockhead even stated that before meeting me, he'd never heard of people who pet-sit (a common side job of mine). Apparently in his neck of the woods, you leave your pet at home, have someone check on them once or twice and keep your fingers crossed that your pet is alive when you return.

He ended the conversation by telling (yelling) at me that I will never find a better guy than him, and then, he hung up on me.  

I guess it's over.

Red Hearts

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Few. The Proud. The Marines.

Some days are stranger than others.

I'm dog sitting, and I came home today to find the very heavy, hard to open front door wide open. I mentioned it to a co-worker, and she had a Police officer respond to the house. He did a complete search  and found no forced entry and no indication of foul play. He checked every nook and cranny to confirm that there were no axe murderers/serial killers hiding in the closets or underneath the beds.

But that's not what today's blog is about.

Today, I was recruited to be in the Marines.

It started with a Marine Sergeant stopping by the Police department with a young recruit; he needed a report released for Marine review.

Usually, it takes three days for us at the department to process a records request, because hello, there's a lot more involved in releasing a report than one would think.

So, the Sergeant says to me and my co-worker "Please, I will do anything, anything you want me to do to be able to get this report today".

(This immediately causes me to think of an incident an Officer had recently where a young lass offered to do "anything" to get out of a troublesome situation. ...)

As he goes on and on (seriously) about how he will do anything to get the blasted report, I offer to take up the challenge and work on releasing the report as soon as possible.

After the Sergeant left, my scheming co-workers said that what he should do to compensate me for my efforts is to take me out to dinner.


Now don't get me wrong, he was a nice looking fellow, but....he had wrinkles. Not that I don't, but you know. Wrinkles indicate age. Like, older age. Not necessarily ancient, but no spring chicken either.

So, the day progresses, and one of my other co-workers walks by and asks "Did I hear something about Sarah going on a date?"

The women I work with fill her in on my potential Marine date.

Side note: At this point, I am not a willing participant.

As luck would have it, my co-worker then decides to try to set me up with her son.

She shows me various, terrible pictures of him, one at an odd angle where his face isn't even distinguishable. Another of his squished face sleeping, and yet another of a fish eye photo of him flipping his mother off. She tells me he's lost at least 60 pounds in the last year. True love!

She then sends him a text, telling him to send her an attractive photo of himself. *cringe*

The Marine shortly thereafter returns. Except, he requests more paper work to be completed, so my one co-worker heads up to dispatch to get the paperwork certified, and I am left nervously, awkwardly standing there with a staring Marine, a young recruit and a hopeful co-worker sitting at her desk, awaiting for true love to take its final course.

Well you know me, and when things get awkward, I start talking.

So I ask the recruit "Hey, what inspired you to go into the Marines?"

He tells me his tale.

Another awkward silence ensues.

So I ask the Marine, "And what inspired you to go into the Marines?"

He also tells his tale, and then says "Why are you asking all these questions?"

...I give him a glamorous answer of "Well, I just love to hear people's stories because no two stories are alike!" Gee whiz and by golly!

He then asks "Well, why are you here?"

I hold a captive audience as I relay in two minutes my life's story and how I got to this very fine point.

Meanwhile, my hopeful co-worker is adding in bits and pieces of my life telling Mr. Marine how great I am, and how I also work as an EMT in the Emergency Department, thus making me "crazy".

He then tells me that I should consider joining the Marines because they will pay for nursing school. He says "Do you know how much the GI Bill is?" And I'm like What's a GI bill? Gastrointestinal something or other? (Okay, I'm not that stupid).

He tells me "it's $80,000 to start with". Again, internally, I'm like ???

He also asks "Do you know how much you'd have to pay for school?"

Being the smart lady that I am, I say "Nothing!"

And he says "That's right!"

Man, I am brilliant.

He then says, "I should get your number"

Suddenly, I am acutely aware of the sound of the seconds ticking by on the clock.

Is he asking me out? Or does he want me to be a Marine? I flash to a music video I saw recently, and the song begins to play in my head (to be shared at the end of this blog).

He tells me "We should meet tomorrow and I could start the recruitment process!" He tells me he'd start today, but by golly, he doesn't have his paper work on him.


He then starts asking me questions like:

  • How old are you?
  • Do you have asthma?
  • Broken any bones?
  • Do you wear glasses or contacts?
  • Completed college?
  • Any Police record? (Uh, hello, I'm working at a POLICE department, I can't exactly have a record)
He then proudly tells me that I have what it takes to become a Marine. 

Then, he tells me (again), that we should meet, tomorrow, and oh by the way, how would my parents feel about me becoming one of the Few and the Proud?

I tell him, politely thanks but no thanks. I'm not joining the military.

He says "But you only have two years left."

To live?

He clarifies: To join the Marines. 

Then he tells me a zany story that I "won't believe". He's lost two sets of keys in the last 16 years he's been in the Marines! 

Egads! Now that's wild!

(Sneakily I had asked him how long he's been a Marine to gauge his age).

He's promised to return soon with bagels for me and my co-workers to compensate us for our time.

                          Music Video Link

Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Daily Grind

It's been awhile. That doesn't mean my life hasn't been funny, though.

Two years ago:
"Sarah, we'd like to offer you this job. You don't even have to apply for it; it's yours for the taking."

Me: "No. Sorry, but no. I think I want to work on nursing school pre-requisites. Besides, I LOVE my job at the vet clinic."

(Paraphrased conversation)

Present day:
I began loathing my job at an unknown, recent date. Somewhere between adopting my kitten, Jack, and applying to nursing school.

Many factors have contributed to this feeling, but when asked exactly why I feel the way I do, I lose my vocabulary skills and simply sum it up as:
"I hate my job." (Doesn't that tell you how I feel?)

A few reasons include an employee turned bully/work goddess where no rules apply and an office manager who I swore, (up until this last week, that is) had developed a deep hatred of me. This wasn't always the case. No: It was my boss who encouraged me to become an EMT. Upon my certification, she got me a pair of socks that said "EMT" on them (so official!) and she was, once upon a time, one of my greatest advocates.

But then I got flushed down the toilet. Squashed like a bug. Forgotten about. Ditched.

So there I was one day, leaning against a cage door, watching a dog recover from surgery, on the brink of a mental breakdown. Surely, you've been there before: manic, ready to cry, having irrational thoughts, ready to walk out of your job, never looking back.

In about a half-hours time, I was surfing the Internet. Yes friends, I was surfing the Internet at work. *Gasp* And I got an idea to look up other jobs. *Double gasp* And I found a job. One that I actually wanted. *Triple gasp* And it was the job I had turned down two years ago. *Quadruple gasp*

What was this job? I'm not quite ready to divulge that information, yet. But it involves law enforcement.

Naturally, I applied. The following week, I got a call to take a test and then to interview for the position.

The week before my interview, my boss cut my hours. When I asked her why, she told me that there were "too many people on the schedule".  Hello! Have you forgot me, your stellar employee?! 

I then seethed. My eyes turned red and stream poured out of my ears. I had had it.

Then my boss appeared. Ever so bravely, I said "Boss, I feel screwed over because I'm only a part-time employee."

Her charming response: "Yup"

She then tells me that I could have some horrible weekend hours that she doesn't want. That's like telling someone they could have the chewed up, hairy piece of gum you just dropped on the floor.

Naturally, I declined. She said "Oh well" and walked away.

Walked. Away.

Then she had a private meeting with the practice owner, which usually means that someone is about to get canned.
The following week, I had my interview. It went well, but I was convinced that I hadn't gotten the job. I was certainly bound to stay at the vet clinic for the rest of my natural life.

Two days later, I got a call that I had a conditional offer of employment if I passed a thirty page background investigation. No big deal, thirty pages. No big deal...

The day that I turned in my background investigation, I got a call from a detective from the department:
"Sarah, I called the vet clinic and they were very surprised to find out that you're a pedophile."

Dot. Dot. Dot.

Have I mentioned that I've known this detective for almost four years? So I told him "Little known story" to which he laughed merrily, and told me the real reason for why he was calling.

Anyway, I passed the background investigation.

In the few weeks since I accepted the job which will start in May, strange things have been occurring at the vet clinic. My boss actually said good morning to me and asked how I was doing. If you knew my boss, you'd realize how monumental this truly is. It was a first in the three and a half years that I've been employed there. She's been grateful, kind, and has recently offered me as many hours as I could ever possibly need or want.

Meanwhile, I've kept the news about my new job a secret. I'll give my notice soon enough. Eventually. When I work up the nerve.

Today, the owner of the practice called me into his office. He asks me to close the door and to take a seat. This never happens unless, well, unless you're about to get fired.

He is a man who avoids conflict at all costs and who never calls in his employees to meet privately with them. That's the job of my practice manager, who is oddly not around this week.

I sit down. I stare at him. He tells me that he never does this, but there are a few things that I need to know. My thoughts go wild: He knows! Give it up, Sarah! Disaster ahead!

Instead, he tells me how valued I am as an employee. That clients love me, and that I am so wonderful to work with. I'm great with people on the phone, I'm great with people in person, and best of all, I'm a low-key person and he means that in the best possible way.

And oh, he's giving me a raise.

And I'm still quitting in about three or four weeks.

And I'm a jerk.

And I feel like one, too.