Wednesday, July 02, 2008

It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year

I know I’m just a wee bit late on this subject, but let me declare that I love summer (which is what this post will be about, at least that’s my intention as I start writing this) or as all the cool kids say, I heart summer. The weather is warm, the sun shines longer, it’s time to swim, the kids are out of school, we get to celebrate the 4th of July, our electricity bills go up and every day in the cubicle brings another reminder that other people are out doing really fun things. I also find that my grass tends to start dying, which requires much less lawn mowing, but not everyone sees that as the plus that I do.

And as if things couldn’t get better, on the fake holiday news front, July is Grilling Month, Ice Cream Month and Hot Dog Month. I’m pretty sure that’s called a trifecta and certainly deserving of a separate post. Yes, summer is a lovely time. Now unfortunately I blew my summer vacation already and will now need to work for the remainder of the summer or celebrate one of those ‘staycations’ that everyone is talking about. Or at least that’s what I thought. Can you imagine my happiness this morning when I was reading the 117 emails I received while on vacation and came across one whose subject line was ‘unpaid time off?’ I clicked the email so hard and so quickly I think I cracked a finger nail. It turns out that my company has now approved unpaid time off whenever we want to take it. I quickly yelled out to the rest of the office to see if I was reading it correctly and they assured me I was. I then announced that I was taking the rest of the day off. Unfortunately, I was advised that the new policy cannot be used in quite that fashion.

I can tell you though that I definitely plan on taking advantage of this lovely new offer by my company, the same company who sent out a memo about how to wash my hands (sing happy birthday while doing so to ensure you washed them long enough). Maybe my employer cares a little more about me than I thought. Of course I am ignoring the fact that they are only doing this to save money, but I plan on being an exemplary employee and setting the example for the rest of my coworkers by taking off as much time as possible. Don’t worry; it’ll be the only time I ever set such an example. In fact, I may delete this post after 24 hours so that no proof of me striving for excellence will be documented. You never know when people will use stuff like that against you.

I’m thinking this summer may be better than the last few. I have no atrial fib this time around and will not be spending this summer recovering from having my chest cracked open like a king crab leg and having artificial parts sewed into me. I’m not sure what your idea of a good summer is, but those 2 things kinda top my list. I can also add to my list that after almost a year of looking, I FINALLY found Diet Grape Soda at the store. As excited as I am about this summer development, that pales in comparison to the FREE Weber Kettle BBQ I found curbside while on a walk a few weekends ago. Seriously, no matter how beat up they might be (and this one is in pretty good shape), the Weber grill is the best grill ever made. I could understand someone wanting to get rid of a rusted out gas grill or an old inflatable pool raft or an old mattress or maybe even a spouse, but a Weber grill? I didn’t question the guy’s sanity when he told me it was free, I just thanked him for the grill and sped off. In retrospect, squealing the tires as I drove away was probably not necessary. And next week I will have the colossal 406 square foot aluminum faux wood patio cover erected put up. The patio has already been extended and in less than a week I can spend my summer days and summer nights (Cliff Clavenism alert: also the title of a Beach Boys album for you Trivial Pursuit fans out there) under the lovely fake wooded shade that marks our first effort at home improvement in the house we bought which still stands as testament to and in homage of the 1970s. I’m lovingly referring to it when it’s done as ‘the hangar,’ because that’s exactly what it’s going to feel like.

So all in all, I am easing quite nicely into summer and hoping you are too. The twins have begun swim classes, or as they should more appropriately be called, the 30 minutes every morning where they get into a cold pool and scream in sheer terror for 25 of those minutes. I’ve loaded up on ingredients for the ice cream maker, which I plan to use as soon as I find where I put it after last summer and I bought some Nathan’s hot dogs to eat on the 4th. I’ll just make sure that I eat them BEFORE watching the Nathan’s Hot Dog contest this year. Though if anyone is looking for a good dietary aid, watching all you can eat food competitions is one of the best. I’ve already gotten sunburned and bitten by bugs I never even saw. Yep, it’s been a great start to summer. Throw in a severe smog alert warning or have a firework explode right in front of me when I’m doing something with it that I shouldn’t be and it’ll feel just like I’m a kid again.

Happy Summer!!


meleah rebeccah said...

I take "unpaid time off" by the handful. Its not a pretty paycheck, but it makes for a much better life.

As for the summer I am knee deep in swimming, tanning, bbq-ing and loving every second of it.

Summer really is my favorite season...(even if its gets muggy and humid here in NJ).

PS: I am still ever so jealous of your FREE Weber Kettle BBQ.

The twins screaming in the pool is a very funny image in my head right now.

and once again, this was one of those Michael posts that explain why I come back to this blog every single day wanting more and more.

cmk said...

I'm so happy for people who like summer. I'm not one of them. I guess that's why I live in the Great White North! ;)

Eva said...

Happy Summer! I'm enjoying the longer days, since that means that there's time to take Boog to the playground every evening after work! And I know it makes you jealous when I mention it, but it is SO AWESOME to be walking distance from the beach when it's this hot! :)

Employee No. 3699 said...

I would gladly give up part of my paycheck for time off. Lucky You!

Yeah, my better half is one of those who doesn't see the plus side of dried out grass. He'd rather pay a larger water bill and keep moving the sprinkler around.


Mel Heth said...

This post made me hungry. :)

I wish our stupid job system would just get a clue and start doing what the Euros and Aussies do: Offer 6 weeks of vacation (AKA holiday) time every year. Think of how much our collective mental health would improve!

CassJustCurious said...

Happy Summer indeed! I love homemade ice cream - what a fantastic way to spend part of the day and I COMPLETELY agree that Nathan's must be consumed PRIOR to watching the sheer mass of hotdogs being consumed in Coney Island. My husband likes to brag about how last years winner was on a flight with him last year after the contest....why he feels this is "brag-worthy" I do not know.

sexy said...