Thursday, July 24, 2008

Perpetual Optimism

Do you know that if you really believe something is going to actually will!?! Have you ever noticed that it seems like happy and optimistic people have better luck?

I think I can...the universal law of attraction... getting back what you put out...positive thinking. It's all the same. And it really, truly, works. Wow.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


There is a woman asleep on the sofa in our lobby. REALLY asleep. Sawing some big ass logs.

And no one here has ever seen her before today.

I wonder if she just stopped in because she was tired? And where in the Employee Handbook does it tell you what you're supposed to do when you find a random snoozer in your lobby?

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

H. E. Double Toothpicks

Gladys used to have a roommate, Naomi. When they first moved in another resident dubbed them Fric & Frac...and although at the time I wasn't sure he should be calling them that, it really did suit them!

One day WorkerBee went in to clean Gladys and Naomi's apartment, where they were watching Jerry Springer on TV. WorkerBee told them why she was there, to which Naomi responded: "C'Mon Gladys, let's get the hell out of here." And they put their purses on their arms and made their way down the hall, making me think of two of the sisters in Hocus Pocus.

For some reason, I laugh every time I think of Naomi saying "let's get the hell out of here," to the extent that Hubby and I have made this our regular statement of departure. Whenever it's time to leave...we get the hell out of there.

Thanks, Naomi.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Good Intentions

This morning in the shower I started clicking off things on my gratitude list and decided today was going to be a Fantastic Friday. I didn't even get anxious when I had to stop for the train on my way to work, instead I got all Zen and used the time to think of more things for the gratitude list. I thought about writing a "Positive Post" for the blog. Had lots of great ideas. And then...

Before I can even get my key in the office door, WorkerBee #1 is telling me that a brand new 5-gallon bucket of ice cream ...we're talking $40 of melted all over the place because the person who worked last night didn't put it away after supper. Nice.

Then I actually get into the office, but before I can even turn on the computer WorkerBee #2 enters. She spilled coffee on a resident and can't find the burn cream. The burn cream is all gone. WorkerBee #2 gets all righteous or something about how could things from the first aid kit be missing. Um, HOW am I supposed to replace something when I don't even know it got all used up????? Freaking tell me when something runs out. The same thing happened with toilet paper a few weeks ago. Just all of a sudden we are out. And WorkerBee asks "what should I do, there isn't any toilet paper?" What about this idea: tell someone to order some when you use the last roll? BEFORE we run completely out? Like all I have to worry about is toilet paper? GEEZ. (there's also the time that they just started using Clorox to clean toilets because we were all out of toilet bowl cleaner. So instead of saying anything to anyone...they just started using bleach to clean toilets. What the hell?) Oh yeah...and yesterday another WorkerBee came into the office and said "this is the last copy of whatever what should I do?" Hmmm. Let me think. Maybe make some more copies????

I wish there was a quiz you could give potential employees that measures their common sense. Or maybe I don't. Because then I probably wouldn't have any staff.

SOOOO, it's a good thing I started the day with the Gratitude List, cuz I'm not in the mood to make one now. I wonder if it would be bad karma to start an Ungracious List? I have some names to put on it....

After posting this I checked my email. Here is my quote of the day provided by the Foundation for a Better Life:

“I always prefer to believe the best of everybody-it saves so much trouble.”
—Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936), poet, author


Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Thanks...I think?

“I can live for two months on a good compliment.”
—Mark Twain [Samuel Clemens] (1835-1910), essayist, humorist, novelist

I gave a resident a hug the other day and while she was squeezing me she said "you're so skinny these days I can almost get my arms around you twice."* I laughed and thanked her for the compliment. To which she replied, "Well, you needed to do something. You were really getting kind of hefty."

There's no way you could possibly get the Big Head while working here.

*I've lost thirty pounds in the last year. While I don't think I'm actually all that skinny, I do feel a hell of a lot better. Thank you Weight Watchers!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Fork You

Just like church, the dining room pretty much sees the same people sitting in the same places every day. There are no assigned seats here. Which I (perhaps mistakenly) tell each new Resident who moves in.

So New Resident decides to sit at "Maude's Table." Let me reiterate...THERE ARE NO ASSIGNED SEATS. There are no assigned tables. First come, first served. Sit wherever the hell you want. That kind of thing.

So, New Resident takes a seat. Maude comes to the table and proceeds to have a hissy fit that any two-year-old who wants candy at the check-out lane of the grocery store would admire. I try to calm Maude down, explaining that this is New Resident's first day here, and let's try to make her feel welcome, yadda yadda yadda, while pulling out a chair adjacent to New Resident for Maude to take a seat. Which she does.

Then, with as much hate as a pissed off 98-year-old white-haired lady can muster, she picks up her fork. She looks right at me. And sends the fork flying right at my head.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Aiding and Abetting

Evidently I'm taking care of a foreign national by letting him live in the attic here at Rock Ridge. He comes down in the evenings to eat, but otherwise just stays in the attic. Sometimes the Resident can hear him bumping around up there.

The resident told the daughter that I'm too nice to tell this person he can't stay in the attic, but the resident just doesn't think it's right to be hiding a foreigner in "today's day and age." And that is why the resident told the daughter. And why the daughter called me. And why I love my job today!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


I definitely don't need a radio when I can catch all this live right outside my office door.

Freddie's Daughter: "Dad, I'm going to pull the car up and pick you up."

Freddie: "Oh, we're leaving now?"

Freddie's Daughter: "Yes, we need to get going."

Freddie: "Well, then I better go drain the radiator one more time before we leave."

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Tuesday Ramblings

I have found that opportunities to really ponder life, relationships, people (or just being!) are abundant when you work with the elderly. I'm so grateful that I am aware of these opportunities so much more than I used to be. I don't know if working with seniors has made me more sensitive to this, or maybe it is maturity? I don't ever remember thinking "I wonder why she feels that way" while someone was totally chewing me up and spitting me out into little bits when I was in my 20s. I was more like "Shut up, you're an ugly butt-munch. You're mom had to tie a pork chop around your neck so the dog would play with you." Anyway, I like that I can view things with a little different perspective than I used to.

So when one person loudly gripes that "this soup is too hot to eat" and the person at the very next table eating the very same soup served at the very same time complains about the soup being too cold, the first thing to fall out of my mouth isn't an insult (if you'd wear your teeth to dinner you could order something besides soup) or defensiveness (Do you think I made the stupid soup? Do you have any idea how hard it is to please fifty different people!?) While those things *usually* don't make it past my lips, I do have to admit that sometimes I still think them. I have so many growth opportunities!!

Leaving the insults behind, what I try to do instead is think about what the real problem might be. Because it really never is about the damn soup. It's about having to give up a driver's license after 70 years of driving. It's about arthritis that hurts so much it is impossible to button a shirt. It is being too proud to ask for help buttoning a shirt. It's about having just lost your spouse of over sixty years. It's about facing your own mortality. It's about dealing with end-of-life issues.

I think it would be a lot easier to bitch about the soup, too.