Alex's Adventures

My adventures in surviving life

Archive for January, 2010

Dirty Dictionaries

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January 31st, 2010 Posted 4:29 pm

Last week an elementary school in Riverside County Calif. decided that removing dictionaries from its 4th and 5th classrooms was the best way to deal with an over-sensitive mother. The mother was appalled by her son stumbling upon the definition of oral sex in the dictionary. I mean really, of all the words in the dictionary, that was the most upsetting? The mother then praised the school for their quick reaction to her complaint.

Instead of having a necessary and possibly embarrassing “heart to heart” talk with her child, the mother decided it was better to attack the source of her child’s curiosity: the dictionary. The dictionary is a standard source of information for all students.  How many years have schools been conditioning us with the mundane homework assignment of writing definitions for weekly spelling lists? I remember those days. I also remember the dictionary being a good source of giggles in my youth.  It  provided the definitions for fantastic words such as penis and bitch and Lake Titicaca.

When was it decided that dictionaries were too sexy for classrooms? Should we censor all reference books for their ability to provide (age-) inappropriate knowledge as well as the appropriate? And if all this madness over what is appropriate and what is not wasn’t enough, now there has to be committee to decide what the school district is going to do about this issue. What a waste of taxpayers’ money. Sorry, over-protective mom, just be thankful you’re 5th grader isn’t out having oral sex.

Parents need to sit down and have an honest talk with their children, because by the time a parent may think their child is  ready to have that talk, it’ll be no surprise to find out that they already heard everything from their friends. If having a brutally honest conversation is absolutely out of the question, try another route. Parents, don’t fret, you can be like by crazy Catholic parents and strike fear in the hearts of kids everywhere by letting your children know God is watching their every move. And if they touch themselves or have sexual relations with anyone before they are married, they are a  sinner and are going to Hell. See how easy that is? It doesn’t even have to be true.

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Jerk Face Stupid Car

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January 25th, 2010 Posted 11:14 pm

I work  at a small company in a local “old west” town as a staff writer which really means: staff writer/receptionist/secretary/party planner/Yahtzee extraordinaire.  It seems like even the dumbest ordinary things always seem to turn into a disaster or an adventure for me. Co-workers have nick-named me Spilly for my infamous butterfingers, my phone answering skills still need some work and since I’ve recently moved into my first apartment with my 5-month-old kitten, my awesome boyfriend and his 12-lb cat, even the mundane household things have me shaking my fist at the cosmos.

This week’s dance with the cosmos involves my 1999 Toyota, which I can truly say is being held together by love. Think Adam Sandler’s “Ode to My Car.” Sure both door handles on the passenger side broke off  and the only way I was able to resolve the issue was by tying a string to the latch on the inside of the door (which later was replaced with a driver side door handle of a 1997 Toyota, flipped upside down), but that’s not my beef with the car right now. Let me tell you about the nightmare of getting my piece of shit car smogged.

I’d have to say this nightmare started back in August when I naively believed that I could park in front of a residence where it says “No Event Parking” and there’s no way the Sheriff station in Carson would be able to know that I didn’t live there. I mean there were like 50 other cars parked there for the concert, they couldn’t possibly tow ALL of them. So wrong, Alex. So wrong.  After an aching 9 hours baking in the sun at the Vans Warped Tour, which by the way, none of the bands I wanted to see on the tour played, I walked passed a Supra I made fun of on my way in…and my car was gone.  Sometimes I wonder where my logic goes. It’s like “OK Alex. I’m going to the beach, have fun trying to figure this out on your own.” I had to walk 3 miles at 10pm in scary ass Carson to the Sheriff’s station to get my stupid car out of God Knows Where impound just to find out the fee was “$135, cash only exact cash.” WTF seriously? And just when I thought I’d had the dumbest night ever, the deputy pulls out the documentation and says, “You’re not Jaime.” Awww c’mon! Do I really need my dad here to get out the car? Arg! There are 16-year-olds on the phone pleading with their parents to come get them and now at 23, have to make the embarrassing phone call myself. Not cool.  It was 2  hours and $300 later that I finally was reunited with my car. See dad, if you had just registered the car in my name, I would have handled this myself!

I didn’t think it would be that hard to have the car registered in my name, but apparently it is for me. Now 5 months later, dad offered to take my car to  “a guy I know” to have the car smogged, but first he wanted to do some handy work to ensure it  passed smog. That meant he was going to fix something that was not even broken. I should have known something was wrong. I think it was the rocket dream.

Maybe it was all the Mass Effect Joey was playing before bed, but I’ve never had a more vivid space dream. I was dropping off my rocket ship at my parents house on some crazy planet that was recently expanding. My sister was screaming like the crazy she is, my mom was going on and about crap she watched on TV and for some reason Carson Daly was everywhere. I should have known he was an alien. I tried to occupy myself my going on the Blast into Space roller coaster, but it was taking way too long to have my rocket ship smogged.

I woke up at 4:30 a.m drank a glass of warm milk, clipped coupons and talked to Dora. At 9:30 a.m. I call Dad and get a voice mail, 11:30 a.m. the same. Finally I get a call around 130 p.m. that my engine wasn’t starting. You’ve got to be kidding me. How is my car dead? It was working when I dropped it off last night, in fact it wasn’t giving me any problems. It was a constant phone battle for the next 8 hours, of trying to find a new engine, new spark plugs, even a new car. OMG I couldn’t believe this. And when the day was finally over I get a call from him apologizing for messing up the wiring. The car has been revived!  But my car still wasn’t smogged.  Finally the next day my car is taken to the smog shop. FAIL!  Oh, Come on! What did I do to deserve this? Will this car never be mine? The month is at a close and if I don’t get my car smogged, I won’t have this year’s tags.

For the next four days I fill my clunker with premium fuel and drive it around, another trick to try to get my car to pass this time.  Up and down the Via Verde area, to West Covina, Baldwin Park and back, to work, back home, back to work, back home, to dinner and then back home. Don’t fail me now, car! On Saturday Dad takes the car in and it passes! Woot! Just barely! A quick trip to the AAA and $89 later, and I will soon be in possession of the pink slip. The cosmos were finally aligned and what better way to celebrate than with breakfast from Flappy Jacks in Glendora: 2+2+2 special. With coffee.

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