Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Birthday memories...Things I remember about different birthdays.

Growing up, I always had to share my birthday with my cousin, Jackie.  She's probably 8 years older than me, but not wiser...she's a Murphy and we've already discussed them.

Grandpa always had a gift that we looked forward to....money!  For years, as soon as he'd see us on the birthday, he'd pull out his wallet and pass over that $1 bill.  Then inflation hit, and it was a 5 dollar bill...what a wonderful day that was.  :)

I remember having a birthday party in the park once, maybe when I was 5.....I don't remember who came, but I do remember that Michelle Tharp did not come.  I wonder why I remember that, and not the good things that happened??

Fast forward a bunch of years to 21.  I was working in Creston, and to celebrate I went to Casey's, bought a 6pack of beer, and drove to Lenox where Dad was working, I timed my arrival to coincide with his departure.  He was driving past me; his carpool feller pointed me out.  So he stopped, I handed him a beer; he says "oh, it is your birthday, isn't it."

The clerk at Casey's did not ask for id, I probably could have been buying beer for years.

I've worked on my birthday, I've had the day off.  I've been to the dentist and the doctor, and neither of them said "happy birthday" even though I have to recite the date to them.  Bastards.  Probably the best task was the day I turned 30, I was working as an apartment maintenance man...

In the days prior to this, I'd been summoned to an apt because of a terrible smell....she demonstrated that her place was clean, so where was the smell coming from???  I went in the next place and looked around, found a bag of rotten onions, they were pretty stinky.  I thought that was it and forgot about it.  That wasn't it...as I soon found out.  She called again, went back to the (abandoned) apt, discovered that the electricity was cut off, and the fridge was full.  And the freezer part was full.  The electricity had been off for 3 weeks, it's June, temps had been in the 80's this whole time.  So I cleaned the fridge, no electricity, no hot water.  It was nasty...worse than cleaning the grease trap at McDonalds, worse than the worst day at the egg place.

There were packages of chicken, or what used to be chicken in there...I'm not sure what stage the bacteria were, they seemed as big as june bugs the way they were chomping that chicken...the bottom of the freezer was about 3" deep, totally full of liquid; more lovingly referred to as "primordial soup".  The smell would be akin to a locker room full of wet dogs that had been rolling on:  dead fish, dead skunks, pig poo, cow pies, baby barf, hair balls, canned dog food, sour milk, and a rotten egg.

Hungry yet?  This guy is my new hero.  Not for what he's eating, but for his writing and descriptive skills.  If I were trendy and hip, I'd spell skills with a z.  But I think it's rude to do that.

So yep, a good time was had.  I rolled the dumpster over, put all the crap into bags and threw it in the dumpster.  Then I had to soak up all that soup, and wash away all the june bug sized bacteria.  (bacteria are normally microscopic, which means you can't see them.) (a short psa for the blonde readers) (june bugs are large, puppy sized bugs with a hard shell, they leave a welt where ever they hit you when you're on the motorcycle.  They're awesome)

Soak up the soup, rinse it down the sink.  Wash off all the mold, chip loose the jelly, scrape off the hard chunks of ??? looks like a bird crapped in there???  Packages, jars, bags, cartons, a fridge holds a lot of stuff.

So when I got it all done, I was taking a break in the air conditioned office...the dumbass manager wanted to know why I didn't just bring the whole thing over to the office...the tenant may have wanted some of that stuff.

Pretty sure my reply was a loud guffaw, and explained how the damn thing was clear full of liquid, which would have left a trail of disgusting yuck across the carpet in the apt, the parking lot and the carpet in the office.  Plus it would have gotten all over me. Remind me to tell you some more stories of that dumbass.

Once the place was cleaned up, we rented it to a nice girl, but she didn't like the way the stench would reach out and punch her in the nose...so I had to swap it out for the fridge in the office...the manager was storing her wedding cake in there....and thought it'd be ok.

It wasn't.

But! these last few birthdays have been great, a motorcycle ride followed by dinner with friends.  The one year, I rode all around NE IA, had a great time.  This year a short ride with friends then dinner...followed by a secondary dinner with another good friend and constant reader.  1/4th of my facebook friends wished me a happy birthday in some form or another, not sure how that compares to other people.  If you were one of them, thank you.
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