Tuesday, March 29, 2011

WOW Encounters

It happened again.

I saw another custom plate that sent my mind aflutter.*

It said:


My possible, yet highly improbable interpretations:

1. The driver is in awe of Oklahoma. They are literally at a loss for multi-syllable words to describe the splendor of this state. "Like, wow, Oklahoma. Just Wow."
2.The driver is extremely distressed by the state of the state. As in "Wow, Oklahoma, are you really ranked as the 6th most obese state? Really? With just under 3.7 million residents in the entire state, this is the kind of recognition you're getting. WOW."
3. The driver is gamer and only mildly impressed by WOW - that would be World of Warcraft. They probably prefer Dungeons and Dragons or Halo or some other game. WOW** is just OK.
4. The driver's name is William Oswald Wentworth and he wants you to be OK with that. If you have a structured settlement, and you need cash now, call his cousin JG. WOW can't help you, so back off. OK?
5. It's an encrypted message to the driver's mother. If you turn WOW upside down it clearly spells MOM. If you turn OK upside down, you realize this tangent is a dead end.
6. The driver is a fan of Christian music but is constantly underwhelmed by the quality of the WOW worship albums. They are just OK. They've put out an album every year since 1996, but they still don't have the hang of it. He's disappointed, but supportive.
7. The driver is just generally sassy. I can hear their voice in my head: "Wow, OK? Just wow. I can't believe you went there. WOW."

What do YOU think it means?

*I really have no intention of turning this into a "check out this license plate I saw" blog, but I can't help it at the moment.
** The more you say "wow," the less it sounds like a real word. Try it. "Wow, wow, wow, wow, wow, wow." Told ya.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

TRI Encounters

Saw a custom license plate this morning while driving on the highway. It read:


Now, if you haven't bothered to notice, I'm a little oenery and tend to play devil's advocate when things are obvious but not obvious enough to be beyond question. It's a bad, but mildly entertaining habit of mine.

So, given my propensity to ponder the irrelevant, I came up with the following list of possible meanings for this not so encoded message:

1. The person driving the car is a hard-core Trinitarian and, like St. Patrick really wants every one to know God is one God in three persons. He's a TRI(une) GOD.
2. The person would like God to put a little more effort into something. As in, "Try, God. Please!" Maybe they are the type who have been praying to win the lottery for decades and are convinced that a little more effort from the big man just might seal the deal on their luxurious retirement.
3. They want you to give God a try. Give Him a go, if you will. If you try God, you might like him. Just a suggestion from your fellow driver. I'm not the betting type, but I would wager that if you asked the driver, they might offer you a satisfaction guarantee.
4. The "i" in TRI could in fact be pronounced as a long "e." That would make this driver a fan of the Tree god, which is probably someone like one of Dionysus' friends or something.*
5. They are a photographer, and a devout believer in God and they want everyone to know that just as a tri-pod steadies a camera, God steadies their life. God is their Tri-Pod.

Yep. Ran with all five possibilities in a matter of 2 minutes.

There's a fine line between genius and insanity. (I have no idea what that has to do with this post. It's just something I've been told.)

*You think this one is the biggest stretch, don't you? Well my senior year of college I took a class on the history of religion and the first day the professor made us say which religion, if any, we associate with. People said the typical answers, Baptists, Catholics, Atheists, Agnostics and ONE Hellenistic Polytheist. Yep, as in Zeus and all his buddies. I've learned not to be surprised anymore.

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, strike three.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Talking Encounters

Do you talk to your TV?

I do.

I like to think most people do. They are either yelling, "Don't open that door! He's in there!" or they are screaming at the ref who obviously didn't see what they saw on that last play. Talking to the television is probably one of the more common abnormal behaviors these days. So, it doesn't make me that weird, right?

The thing is, lately I've noticed that I talk quite a bit while I'm driving too. Not to my fellow passengers, or on my phone, or even to the other drivers who are clearly out to ruin my day and test my patience. No, instead I talk to animals I see.

Now I'm weird.

It's fine.

At least I know it.

I can't help myself. If there is a dog hanging out of the window of the car at a stoplight, I can have a full conversation with it. No lie. And heaven help whoever is in my car if there's a stray dog on the side of the road. My inner moral dilemma is immediately vocalized and I start to make up a story about why the dog is on the side of the road and what will probably happen to it if I don't intervene. And if there's a dog that has been hit, well you might as well open the flood gates. It's not pretty.

The same thing happens in movies. People can drop dead left and right, but if something happens to that dog, we are turning it off. Have you seen Gran Torino? People kept getting killed and there's all this tension and the whole time all I could think was, "They had better not hurt his dog." And in war movies like The Patriot, I can see soldiers get slaughtered but if something happens to their horses, I hide my eyes. Sick, right?

I credit this, and many of my other idiosyncrasies, to my mother. Our dog at home is most definitely her favorite child, and since my brother and I have flown the coop, she talks to Rascal about his day all the time. He's there and he has ears. Silky ones, in fact. I have to admit, my mother's love for animals is definitely ingrained in me. I love Rascal, too. How can you not love this face?

It just seems I also love every other animal I've ever seen.

EXCEPT for the neighbor's cat who lurks around my porch. Every time I see him sitting on my patio table, I yell "YOU DON'T LIVE HERE."

Thursday, March 17, 2011

St. Paddy's Encounters

Since my name is Erin, I always feel especially celebratory on this day.

Considering it's not a work holiday, St. Patrick is really good at managing to have an eventful day.

Allow me to list a few things that have happened to me on or around St. Patrick's day the past few years:
- I was called "a legend of a woman" by an actual Irishman in a bar in Chicago. After he told me I was a legend, he asked if he could "lift me." Before I could even ask what that meant, my feet were off the floor and he just held me in the air. Super awkward. Still have no idea why that happened.
- I was in Ireland, and learned that they make fun of Americans for saying St. PaTTy's day instead of St. Paddy's Day.
- Also witnessed the St. Paddy's parade in Galway. There were alot of people dressed like bishops and even more people dressed like snakes. See:

- I spent last year in Chicago with my parents and my best friend. We went to the same pub where the lifting incident took place, but went in the afternoon. It was much more calm and my feet got to stay on the floor. BUT we ran into these loud obnoxious boys who just happened to attend a certain loud and obnoxious university. Should have known the Jayhawks would try to ruin a lovely day. We did not let them succeed.
- My dad carried this around in his man-bag all day while we were in Ireland. He found some clovers and just had to take a pic.

- My mom earned her nickname on St. Patrick's day. She was cold during the parade and went to find a hat to wear from a local shop. She wanted "anything but a Guiness hat." Instead, she bought this:

For those of you who don't know, Murphy's is knock-off Guiness. Basically my mom bought a Natty Light hat. Now we call her "Murph."

St. Patrick's Day has always been a good day for me. Many thanks to those who helped make hilarious memories. And most importantly to the Bishop who helped a nation and taught us the complexity of the Triune God with a simple clover.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Arguing Encounters

Some days feel like this. Some days you are Tom Hanks. Others you are Dan Hedaya. And some days you get to be Meg Ryan.

"I'm not arguing that with you."

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Glowing Encounters

I just got off the phone with my Sitti (that would be my grandmother for those of you who are random creepers... I mean, readers).

She's a funny lady. She had a busy day today, and was, when I called, having coffee with two of her friends. These two girls are her cohorts. The three of them are always doing something. In fact, they've been so close for so long they were supposedly the first ones to see me when I was born.

I've heard the story a million times: It was a snowy Sunday in January. They were in church, my parents and grandparents weren't. They whispered (reverently, I'm sure) up and down each pew and left right after communion (tisk tisk) to make it the hospital to see me. Aunt Viviane always makes sure I know she was first. It went Dr., dad, mom, sitti, jiddi,my mom's sister Aunt Cheryl, Aunt Viviane then Aunt Beverly.

Anyways, they are funny.

I was talking to Sitti and they were hollering in the background about how they had better be invited to my wedding since they were the first people on earth to lay eyes on me and then Aunt Viviane took the phone and the following conversation unfolded:

Aunt Viviane: Erin, what are you wearing?
Me: ummm, what?
Aunt Viviane: What are you wearing?
Me: Like, right now?
Aunt Viviane: Yes. Right now. What are you wearing? Jeans?
Me: ...yes. I'm wearing jeans.
Aunt Viviane: Well you still look like a bride! Even in jeans! You're just glowing!

I almost couldn't contain myself. Not only was she unknowingly asking very awkward questions, but she could see my glow through the phone and the 200 miles that separate us.

Like I said, they sure are funny.

Love it.