Not everyone has their own unique outlook on life, but those who do are often more than eager to share that viewpoint with you. Such is Marie. An opinionated commenter on everything from health care to haute couture, Mrs. Hank Schrader has no shortage of bon mots both on air and online. Haven’t read Marie’s blog yet? Check out a sampling of excerpts below.
• “I’m sleeping in a motorized bed and I spend all my spare time in a closet full of boxed rocks. I’m going to blog about whatever the H-E-double-hockey-sticks I want.” –Marie’s Blog – In Sickness and In Health (Season 4 Episode 1, “Box Cutter”)
• “A nurse is like a medical Leatherman — whatever needs doing, a nurse will get it done. That is seriously badass.” –Marie’s Blog – Superheroes In Clogs (Season 4 Episode 2, “Thirty-Eight Snub”)
Well, you could knock me over with a feather. I CANNOT even believe what is going on right now.
Can anyone explain to me why a perfectly sane man — a father and a husband with a family who loves him — would deliberately put his life in danger to go work in a car wash, of all places, when he could be safe and sound under the protection of federal agents? It makes no sense.
I understand, it’s a big investment to buy a business, and you need to show customers that you’re there for them, rain or shine, seven days a week. (Although, technically, not during rain because no one gets their car washed in crappy weather. But you see my point.)
But it’s a CAR WASH. Are you telling me there isn’t one employee in the whole business who could be trusted to run the register for a day or two? Okay, let’s say he robs you blind. What have you lost? A couple days’ income. Meanwhile, you’ve potentially saved your life.
Also, this whole business about the explosion at the nursing home? Thank god more people weren’t hurt. At first, I was sure it was some kind of crazy Al Qaeda attack, but the more I watch the news — and talk to a few insiders — turns out, it had NOTHING to do with terrorists. Which, on the one hand, thank god, because if terrorists start attacking Albuquerque, then really, we are all in a lot of trouble. Not like New York or Washington deserve to be attacked, but it makes way more sense. What kind of point are you making if you attack a nursing home in the middle of New Mexico? You hate old people? Okay, but so what — they’re already at death’s door.
Sorry, getting back to my main point: I can’t go into a lot of detail… (What else is new? Hank is actually threatening to edit my blogs before I post them now, like some kind of ridiculous blog cop. As if he doesn’t have MUCH more important things going on right now.) But from what I’ve heard? Let’s just say that a certain local fast food joint has been flavoring its signature dish with something that packs a little more kick than habanero, if you know what I mean. And if you don’t, it’s probably better that way, because if you knew what I know, your mind would be blown. (Mine is.)
I’m not going to lie. Lately, life has kind of “sucked it,” as my nephew says. My brother-in-law has lung cancer, my husband got shot by some armed maniacs, he spent months fighting to get back on his feet, and now something like this happens, and I have to ask: What is going on in the world? What happened to the normal life that I was living a couple minutes ago?
It’s gone, is what I think. And it’s probably never coming back. So maybe I’d better get used to this new, nutso version of reality, where bad things happen to the people I love, and things don’t always turn out so great. But then I remember all the support and love that people sent our way when Hank was hurt, all the donations helped pay for my brother-in-law’s treatment, the fantastic nurses and physical therapists who took care of Hank and got him back on his feet. I didn’t know this before, but I know it now: There’s always some good in every bad situation.
So here’s hoping that recent events are a sign that certain law enforcement agencies are closing in on certain criminals, that things are going to quiet down now, and we can all get on with our lives. God knows, if Hank has anything to say about it, they will. I’ve seen how hard he was willing to work on a case that was colder than Sandia Peak in January — give him a new case with fresh clues and there’ll be no stopping him. I wouldn’t want to be on the other side of that, Internet, and neither would you.
I apologize for last week’s blog — I guess it was pretty obvious, but I had other stuff on my mind. I still do, actually. Things here are… well, they’re completely insane. I can’t really go into it, because I’ve been told in the strongest possible terms that I have to keep my keyboard zipped. To quote Hank: “Not. One. Word.” Jeez, as if I would! I am aware that this is a situation that calls for a certain amount of discretion.
Boy, I don’t know what I’m going to blog about this week. Nothing big going on. I’m a little distracted, but I’ll think of something. Couldn’t let you down, could I, Internet?
I’m keeping busy — lots of stuff going on at my job, you know. The office manager has been getting complaints about people’s lunches going missing, so they’re asking everyone to clearly label their food, to rule out the possibility that people are eating each other’s lunches by accident. So… that’s good.
And Hank is good. Working hard on his cases and things. Not really anything to talk about there. I mean, not that I would. But even if I would, there’s still nothing going on. You know what? Forget I even mentioned it.
I can’t quite believe it, but my nephew is sixteen years old this week. Sixteen! How is that even possible? I swear, just yesterday he was sitting in high chair with a bowl of Cheerios, experimentally pushing one up his nose. (Also, slices of hot dog and once, half a water chestnut. His parents were on a first name basis with the admitting nurse at the local ER.)
Despite those earlier bouts of mischief, I’m happy to say he’s become an amazing young man, and as far as I know, he hasn’t put anything up his nose in at least a year. (LOL!)
But now it dawns on me: He’s almost grown up. In another couple years, he’ll be going off to college, voting in elections, drinking (hopefully in moderation), and god help me, sneaking off to strip clubs with his Uncle Hank. He’s on the verge of the best — and some of the hardest — years of his life, and it makes me think of all the things I wish I’d known when I was his age.
Despite what certain members of my family might think, I did not fall off the turnip truck yesterday, if you know what I mean.
It’s fine. I understand why certain people feel a need to smile and nod and make up elaborate stories to explain their actions — even though, if you think about it, those stories don’t make the slightest bit of sense. They know and I know that there’s more going on than anyone is willing to admit, and we’ve all just agreed to accept this cover story, because it’s easier than digging into what, honestly, would be a really unpleasant discussion about certain inescapable facts.
Ever since Hank got hurt, people have been telling me how lucky he is to have me — which, yes, he is — and how great I’ve been doing — which, yes, I have. And if they happen to think there’s something heroic about the way I’ve put all my energy into helping Hank get better… well, I guess we all need heroes, right?
You know who I admire? Working moms. I can rock the to-do list, but seriously, those ladies are some black-belt-level multitaskers. They start their day making breakfast for their families, get the kids off to school and daycare, put in a full day at a crazy-making job, and then go home, get dinner on the table and get everyone off to bed, homework done, diapers changed, dishes washed, the whole deal.
I can’t even imagine how they do it. Where do they find the time? How do they get up every morning, knowing their day won’t end until they’ve crossed everything off their list? And the thing that really stumps me: How do they stay focused on their job, knowing they have a perfectly adorable little baby sitting in some daycare center, wondering where her mommy is?
I’m going to put my life coach hat on this week, because it seems like everyone around me is totally caught up in the way things are — instead of realizing how amazing things COULD BE, if they’d just let themselves dream a little.
For example, I’ve gone back to working at Kleinman Radiology a few days a week. At first, they weren’t so crazy about letting me work part-time, because all the other radiology techs work a full week. But then I pointed out how helpful it could be to have an extra technician on duty during the really busy times — early morning, mostly, since people like to come in before work — and suddenly, the managing partner was all over the idea like Hank on a plate of huevos rancheros. All it took was a little imagination!
Apparently, some people feel that maybe I’ve been sharing too many personal details about their lives on this blog. I mean, they haven’t exactly come out and told me, but I can read between the lines. Or rather, I can read between the total lack of lines.
After one little comment last week about my husband’s investigation du jour, Hank’s suddenly become extremely cagey. And by cagey, I mean he’s shut up tighter than a clam with a sore throat. He won’t even respond to innocent conversational questions.
ME: “Do you have anything planned for today?”
That’s when I get words. Mostly, I just get grunts.
I’ve been thinking a lot about Oprah. You know, her whole thing is that you should “live your best life.” But I’m wondering — how do you know if this is your best life? Sure, it might seem pretty great, but could it be better?
For example: Some good friends recently bought a car wash. That was their dream — to take their life savings, buy a business, be their own boss. But is that their best life? I get it, people need to get their cars washed, but couldn’t they have opened a cupcake bakery? Or one of those cute shops that sells only organic cotton children’s clothing? A car wash is just so… practical.