Hands To Heaven (How I Survived My First Crush).

It’s just an ordinary morning: busying reviewing prebills and listening to my iTunes Radio. La-tee-da. I’m doing my work, doing my work. Drinking my coffee. Doing my work.

Hmm, today, maybe I’ll listen to Peter Hollens on iTunes Radio. I like a Capella and show tune-y songs and can use a l’il break from all the Eminem I’ve been listening to lately. That Eminem. Man, he really puts it in perspective, doesn’t he? But, it’s hard listening to him in the office. It’s a lot of work to keep adjusting the volume when all the mofo lyrics play and Mr. Boss comes into my office. Yes, Peter Hollens will be a welcome change.

♫♪♫ As I watch you move ♫♪♫
Wait, I know this song.

♫♪♫ Across the moonlit room ♫♪♫
Oh my gosh, why are tears forming in my eyes?

♫♪♫ There’s so much tenderness in your loving ♫♪♫
This [sob] is not [sob] Peter Hollens.

♫♪♫ Tomorrow I must leave ♫♪♫
My heart [sobbing even harder] is breaking. Oh it hurts, it hurts!

♫♪♫ The dawn knows no reprieve ♫♪♫
Why am I weak in the knees? [uncontrollable tear-shedding] PULL IT TOGETHER, Caroline! A client is going to walk through that door any minute. Mr. Boss is going to walk through that door any minute. Get a grip, you sissy!

♫♪♫ God give me strength when I am leaving ♫♪♫
Yes, God, give me strength now! [fetal position under my desk]

No, no this song is not Peter Hollens. In fact, it’s “Hands To Heaven” by Breathe.

It’s the one song that I cried myself to sleep to every. single. night in 8th grade. It’s the one song that I played relentlessly. It’s the one song on the cassette tape (remember those) that I bought three times because I kept wearing it out. It is the song that helped me through my first crush, John. (No, that is not his real name. I have to change his name. What if he reads this?!?!)

I cannot believe that I’m pushing 40 [cough] and all those emotions are coming back. The tears. won’t. stop. Oh my ga, it’s like I’m 13 again. I can feel the pimples breaking out on my face and have an overwhelming urge to go buy some Noxzema.

Oh Scotty John, you were loved, oh so loved. Sure, John and I had been friends since we were 8 but something changed one day. I just looked at him and the world melted. [Cue Modern English] I just knew I was going to die, literally, I WOULD DIE, if we did not go out. I practiced kissing on my pillow all the while imagining that I was kissing him. I’d write him letters and draw him pictures that I would NEVER give to him. NO! I could never tell him how I felt even though he probably felt the same way. Is there anything more desperate / pathethic / tragic / wretched / pitiful than a preteen swooning over her first crush? Sadly, Scotty, er, I mean, John was never mine.

According to Wikipedia, Breathe disbanded. Let us bow our heads in a moment of silence.

How old were you when you had your first crush? What was the one song that got you through? Do you feel puberty creeping back? It’s okay, you can borrow my Noxzema.

Mixed Cassette Tape


How Many Children Will Die In Hot Cars This Summer?

A news story out of Houston caught my attention and made my blood boil. Two children were left in a hot car while their mother was getting her hair styled. Bystanders broke through the window to get the children out. Thank heaven, the children are fine. The good Samaritans did not call the police at the request of the mother. I don’t know what enrages me more – the children left in the car or the fact that NO ONE called the police?

Who the FRIK leaves her kids in the car while she gets a haircut?!?! She didn’t forget that her kids were in the car. This was completely intentional. Social Services needs to visit this home. This mother has proved that she makes serious errors in judgment – the kind that hurt people. All I can do is pray for that mother in hopes that she never does something so asinine again, for the sake of her children.

I once walked up to two children sitting in the cab of a U-Haul on a 90° blistery, summer day. I can still see those children’s faces. One was a little girl, not even 3 years old. The other child was a 6 month old, suckling a bottle, in a white onesie. The windows were rolled all the way down. I ran into TJ Maxx and asked them to make an announcement for the driver of the U-Haul truck to come out. Not wanting to leave the kids alone, I ran back out to the truck to wait for the parent. I had no clue what I was going to do. Do I call police? Do I pick up the children and take them inside? I then realized that the parking lot was full and wondered how many jerk-holes walked past these children and did nothing? The mom came out within moments. She was in tears. She was so grateful to me for looking out for her babies and remorseful that she was so stupid. I had already decided to call the police but she convinced me not to.

I regret not calling the police to this very day. Now that my babies are almost all grown, I’ve learned that parents do stupid stuff. However, there is a huge difference between a parenting mistake and complete lack of judgment. The TJ Maxx mom made that choice to go shopping, in TJ Maxx, and left 2 children under the age of 3, in a U-Haul, on a frickin’ hot summer day. What part of that is a mistake? None. It was intentional and selfish and lazy. The hair-style mom and the TJ Maxx are one-in-the-same, just like Justin Ross Harris, only their children survived.

Justin Ross Harris

I looked up several other news stories and just can’t believe how often this happens. Already this year, 13 children have DIED while left in hot cars.  Last year, 44 children DIED. There is no reason for this.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Father Arrested After Leaving Baby In Car At Clayton County Courthouse

USA Today: Father Arrested After Daughter Dies In Hot Car

NBC News: ‘An Unimaginable Loss’: 13 Children Died in Hot Cars This Year

I really try to have grace in every situation. Lord knows that I need grace. I just can’t muster the grace for parents that leave their kids in hot cars to get their hair styled or to shop at TJ Maxx.

The Devil’s in the Details . . . and in the Grocery Store.

I’m a Christian. Yep, I admit it. But that’s not what this post is about. It’s about Ms. Gwyn and her beliefs. Ms. Gwyn works at the local Bi-Lo. This story is also about my Facebook fans. At this exact moment, I have 664 Facebook fans. I’m only 2 fans away from the devil’s number: 666. [Cue creepy music.] Since I’m on the cusp of invoking the devil’s number via Facebook fans, I thought it’s a perfect time to share my story about Ms. Gwyn.

Find Me On Facebook.

I love coffee, especially at work. My routine is to fix a cuppa joe first thing. Everyday. I sometimes make ice coffee, sometimes piping hot coffee. Sometimes super dark roast. Sometimes medium roast. Regardless of the roast, every cup has a healthy portion of flavored creamer. That’s my vice. I gave up soda, so let me have my flavored creamer. Oh, just get off my back!

I ran out of creamer the other day and abso-flippin-lutely had to stop at the store on my way into work last week. Since I had to stop for creamer, might as well kill two birds with one stone and buy some lunch items and extra ice cube trays to make coffee ice cubes for my ice coffee. But, I had a dilemma. The boss told me the day before that he wanted me to make sure I was at the office by a certain time. He’s a great boss, so I wanted to accommodate. On this day, however, stopping at the store could potentially make me late for work.

On my commute, I prioritized my shopping list to match the store’s layout to minimize any delay in getting to work on time. I stopped at produce first and grabbed the salad fixin’s planned for the day’s lunch. Then I hustled to the household goods aisle because that’s where the ice cube trays would be. Well, one would think. Wait. What? They’re not here. Okay, maybe they’re on the next aisle with the baking trays. No? Okay, maybe with the paper towels? NO?!?! I think to myself, “Self, just go get the creamer and keep your eyes open. Maybe there will be a store clerk on the way and you can ask him/her.” “Self, that’s a great idea. You’re so smart!” “I know. And you’re cute.” “Awe, stop it! You making me blush.”

I grabbed the creamer, but still no ice cube trays and still no store clerk in sight. That meant I had to go to customer service, but there was a long line and the cashier was nowhere to be found. That was when I admitted defeat and accepted that I would be late for work. Finally, the cashier returned. I wish I could’ve seen my facial expression because when she asked who she could help, everyone turned and pointed to me. I was not the first person in line but apparently was the most desperate looking.

The cashier and I walked down the exact same aisles only to find the exact same thing – no ice cube trays. She called the manager who swore that they sold them, but he was wrong. Nope. No ice cube trays. The cashier returned to her register and I got in line behind those already waiting. It’s at this point that another cashier came, Ms. Gwyn.  She called the customer in front of me and me over to her register.

The guy in front of me just got off a night shift at the fire station. It was obvious that he was tired and hungry. He had 2 packages of meat that were BOGO. Ms. Gwyn wouldn’t give him the BOGO. Despite the facts that both meat packages were BOGO, both weighed the same, both were even the same type of meat, sadly, they were different cuts of meat. BOGO only applied to the EXACT. SAME. ITEM. Ms. Gwyn wanted to help him, but she had to follow store policy. Poor guy. I really wanted him to have his meat (so that he could have his pudding) but he put one pack back.

Now it was my turn to meet Ms. Gwyn. She wished me “Gud mornin” in her thick, Gullah accent. “Good mornin,” I replied. She smiled so big that I couldn’t help but smile either. You could tell that her joy runs deep. She completed scanning my order and I barely heard her say, “Oooooh, 666. Dat’s da numba o’ da devil.” She said it so faintly that it did not even register what she said until I saw the total of my groceries on the screen = $6.66.

“Did you just say, ‘666. That’s the number of the devil?'” Ms. Gwyn said, “Uh-huh. Dat’s da beast’s numba.” Her eyes were so big and I could tell she was looking at me as if I were the devil right in front of her. Part of me wanted to tell her that if the stupid grocery store had stupid ice cube trays, my order would not be $6.66, but I didn’t. That wasn’t going to help her. I could tell that she took it as some sort of sign that my order was $6.66. So I did the only thing I could do.

“Ms. Gwyn, would it make you feel better if I rebuke the devil right now?”

“Oh, YES. Please.”


Ms. Gwyn was so glad. Her grin returned and she accosted me with blessings as I left the store.

Yes, I was late for work but it was okay because I was doing the LORD’s work . . at register 3 . . . in the local Bi-Lo.