What is a monkeybox?

When I was a little girl, we had a pet monkey named Amanda. My Dad worked in the produce business, so each night he brought home that days culls in a big box - spotty cucumbers, pithy apples, limp celery, moldy oranges and the like. We called it a monkeybox. It was really just trash, but my Mom would take each piece of fruit and trim it, pare it and cut it up to make a beautiful fruit platter for Amanda. Even though it was deemed trash by one, it still had life left in it and was good for the purpose we needed it. That's how I live my life - thrifting, yard saling, looking for another's trash to be my treasure.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Winter Weather Whine

For four straight days we have been preparing for the ice, the snow, the sleet, the whatever we were supposed to get. Supposed to get, being the operative words. It rained for most of those four days, but the temperature only truly got cold (22 degrees) until late last night. We did have some freezing rain late last night that was freezing on the roads and the cars. I assumed there wouldn't be any school today so I stayed up a bit later than usual and watched some silly TV. I finally dozed off about 11:30 or so. Suddenly it's 1:30 AM and I hear DH telling me good-bye as he was on his way to work. A few minutes late I hear tires lurching and odd noises so I went to investigate.

Apparently the brake line had gotten wet and froze solid on his truck. He couldn't go forwards or backwards. He initailly thought he could go backwards because he was slowly going down the driveway. But, it turns out he was just rolling backwards slowly. He wound up in the middle of the street blocking traffic (as if there was any traffic at 1:45 am!). He kept turning the truck off as he decided what to do about it. I suggested that he leave it run for awhile and perhaps it might thaw out. "Oh, but he had a better idea. Get dressed and come help me push it out of the road." "Oh, I have a better idea, I'd rather stay on the couch in my P.J.'s under this blanket."

So, it's now 2:00 am and I am getting dressed, putting in my contacts (because I knew my 1980's retro glasses would frost ove), putting on my big winter coat, finding my gloves and lastly donning my earmuffs so that I can go out and push the genius's truck. (Sorry, it's been a long night).

Once I got outside, he decided that I should "drive" while he pushes. It's a standard and we've only had the truck a week so I havne't acutally learned how to do the whole stick thing yet. And, 2:15 am isn't the ideal time for my first tutorial. And, the radio is on REALLY LOUD and he hasn't figured out how to turn it off yet so I am yelling over REALLY LOUD country music (gack) trying to reach the clutch and the brake. The seat is too far away and I can reach the clutch or the brake, but not the clutch and the brake. So, that idea is shot down. DH gets behind the wheel all cranky (Hello? I'm the one with NO Sleep yet!) and starts reving it up. VROOM! VROOM! VROOM! DOn't forget - this is 2:30 AM and our neighbors all live thisclose to us. VROOM! VROOM! VROOM!

That's when I notice that the back left wheel is spinning wildly and the rest aren't moving at all. It is recycling day so the recycling bin was sitting by the driveway. I went and pulled out the Sunday paper and shoved it under his wheel to give him traction. Zoom - he pulled right back up into the driveway. He decided to go around the block and make sure everything was okay before he headed off to work. He drove up the block and decided to turn around in a neighbor's driveway. As he turned into their driveway I envisoned him getting stuck there. I would have shoved the Sunday paper somewhere ELSE if he had done THAT! Long story, well, longer - he made it to work and everything is fine.

I am the world's worst sleeper. After an event like that - I knew I would be wake for quite awhile. I ended up falling back to sleep a litle after 4:00 AM after watching various infommercials for the Micro-Grill, selling on ebay and some sort of fancy undergarment that makes you "appear" to have lost weight. I felt like I had only been asleep for a minute or two when the alarm went off at 6:00 AM. I staggered to the kitchen refusing to drink any coffee or even be half mentally alert because I KNEW there wouldn't be any school. One by one each school was listed on the cancellation list. Some weren't listed because they were off for MLK Day like they should be today. Anyway, one by one, every single school in my entire area EXCEPT ours was cancelled. By the time I decided school was actually going to be in session - it was nearly 7:00 and I hadn't had any coffee and DS was still zonked out in bed. Not to mention the fact that the car was encapsulated in a thick layer of ice that I would have to hack through.

I got DS up - he was in a MOOD as he thought there wouldn't be any school either. He got even crankier as he read the cancellations and realized it ws only HIS school having clases today. He gobbled up a bowl of cereal, got dressed and did his "HAT" (Hair, armpits and teeth) while I dethawed the car. I got him there on time and thankful that we had tinted windows as I had no time for grooming this morning. The roads were fine as it got so cold so fast that the water and ice practically freeze dried off the roads.

We were lucky. There are several towns less than 30 minutes from my house that have no power and everything is covered in ice. They are saying it will be at least a week before the power is restored. The hotels in my area are packed with people. The shelters are full too. So, we were very lucky.

Now it is nearly 10:00 and I drank so much coffee that I couldn't possibly take a nap right now. But, I need one. Bad. I will get waaay tired about the time I have to go pick up Mr. Cranky from school. He won't be cranky anymore. But, I will!


  1. testing b/f I post a long comment

  2. Holy Toledo breadman's wife!!!! This story broke me down(cracked me up.. get it?) I can only laugh with you because my brother-in-law used to be a breadman and I can see him and my sis out doing the same thing just so he could go earn a few bucks.

    I will honestly pay good money to read whatever you write some day.

  3. Hi Shara! I'm with you about staying on the couch. What was your husband thinking?? Hope you're getting a good night's sleep right now.
    Looks like the swap partners for the pink & brown swap have evened out, so we'll be each other's partners now. Can you drop me an email so we can chat? Thanks! cmhall410@hotmail.com

  4. Anonymous7:44 PM

    Loved the story. One time my sister and I were helping my dad get the car out of the snow so he could go to work. My sister was in the driver's seat while my dad was pushing. All of a sudden she gunned it and the car shot off on the ice and my dad fell on his face. I still laugh when I think about it. Funny...he wasn't laughing. Libby

  5. Good thing you helped with the 'ole newspaper under the tire trick. LOL. Calm under pressure and resourceful!

  6. Anonymous7:46 PM

    this is Oliveoyls sister, the one who is married to a former breadman and I do not envy you at all.I remember having to get up myself when I was a vendor and deal with the weather and it made for some good stories. I got a good laugh out of this one, sounds like something we would have done for the sake of a few bucks!!


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