Friday, April 07, 2006

67 the orange thing, and going fishing

The head doctor of the study never called me back. So I'm just going to go on Tuesday.

Last Friday I borrowed the leaf blower and its cord from my parents. I worked in the yard a little on Saturday, but the leaves are all matted down in the gardens and the leaf blower doesn't do much. All of our rakes have 1 or 2 tines. They look like the fence in front of a haunted house. So I haven't returned the leaf blower yet. Yesterday I called my mom to tell her something that happened where we used to work and she said my dad just asked her "Where's the orange thing and the other thing?" (meaning the orange cord and the leaf blower) and she said that I had it and he said "She always takes our stuff why can't she get her own?" Nice.

I had to go to Home Depot (to buy a rake with teeth!) and to the petstore this afternoon. I figured I might as well bring my dad, get him out of my mom's hair for an hour or so. I picked him up and we're driving down the street and he says "Why couldn't you go by yourself?" Actually, it would be easier for me to go by myself! The point is to bring him places. I just said, "I like your company and I thought you might want to hang out with me for a while instead of Mommy." No response.
At Home Depot, I choose a small-ish all-metal rake whose tag insisted its tines cannot fall it out. Hmph. We'll see. The only other rake they had was a larger one (the size I wanted) but it was plastic. The plastic ones break. My father says "I was just here. Yesterday. Or maybe today." "Really? What did you buy?" "I don't know." We go inside to find a nozzle for the hose. He says, "We have two big rakes, really big. One's green." (of course) He continues, "You should get one of those." "Where did you get them? Did you get them here? Do you remember where in the store they were?" "I don't know." I ask a lady, she says the only rakes are outside, which is where I got mine. I pick out an industrial strength nozzle (I'm so sick of buying cheap stuff and having it break) while my father mutters about his rakes and takes mine and pretends to rake with it, evaluates it and proclaims that "Maybe it's okay, I don't know."
I lose him when I go back outside to pay. He's mesmerized by a display of plant fertilizer. "Do you need some of that?" "I don't know if it's the kinds she likes." I take out the phone, call my mom, she says to get it. I'm juggling phone, purse, rake and nozzle. My dad comes over: "You're dropping everything." "That's why I brought you." I get the fertilizer, we pay and head up the hill to the new and bigger pet store where I like to get my fish.
As we walk in, my father is talking about his sneakers. These are his number 3 sneakers (whatever that means). They are an ancient pair of Nike Air with the heels worn completely off and the key elements colored green. "I colored these you know. They were all plain before." Tactfully, I say, "They're very nice. " "You think so?" No. "Yes."
The boy who waits on me (and he is a boy, maybe 16 years old) is stupified by the fact that I chose a spotted corydoras. There's 3 of them in the tank. There's no price for them written on any tank. I explain that they usually sell them to me for the same price as the albino cories. He looks through a thick book saying, "I don't know what they are." "It's a spotted corydoras," I say again. Finally that's resolved. Then I want a baby pleco. There's some issue with the kid's finger and the water, he keeps yelping like he's been bitten, and finally puts a glove on and catches my little sucker fish. I ask him two more questions: can I buy one of the little pots to put plants in underwater (uh...I think they only come with plants in them?) and could the slightly low pH of my tank have killed my other pleco? (Uh, let me get someone).
Then my dad and I wander to the puppy area and look at puppies. They have a red short-haired dachsund. Our Alf was red and long haired. I say, "I miss Alf. Don't you miss Alf?" Grunt. I point at the puppy. "That's about how big Alf was when we got him, remember?" My father looks at the puppy and says "We had one of those, didn't we? We had it for a long time." I say, "Yeah, 15 years," and I want to cry because he's forgotten Alf, who he loved so much.
On the way home, I say, "Did you have a good time?" and he says, "I thought we were going fishing."

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