Today we will be featuring a solo piece by Stella. What follows is the most frustrating story you'll ever read....
Ever since Loki got Baby Blue’s 6 month pictures back she has turned into a photo-printing maniac- a real wack-a-doodle if you will, (which is my own personal adjective for her behavior.) Now I know my little niece Baby Blue is so stinking precious and these photos of her in her 6th month of life are to be cherished as a most prized possession. So it is no surprise that Loki would stress over these photographs until they were displayed in new frames and photo albums throughout her house and each family member owned such a wonderful treasure as well. Loki took orders from her family members and tediously picked over the photos until it was time to have them developed.
But lo and behold, the prints did not quite match Loki’s vision of brilliance. Baby Blue is known for her beautiful blue eyes and they appeared dark and black in the prints. This would be unacceptable for any mother of a blue eyed babe. (My daughter’s eyes were always so dark brown you couldn’t really tell the difference. This does not make me less sympathetic to her plight, only that I could not relate to a dilemma of this proportion.) The photos were also darker and not as bright and vibrant as they appeared on the computer screen. (She actually said that Blue looked like a vampire in the photos due to her ivory skin and dark eyes, but for once, this did NOT make her happy.)
I am sure Loki tossed and turned in her bed that night. She then made the command decision to develop them again. She originally went to Walgreens, but was advised to use Kinko’s instead. She did a trial run at Kinko’s the next morning, and alas, Baby Blue’s baby blue’s were blue in the pictures after all. Since she had only reprinted a few shots, she needed to go back to print the full order. And so began my involvement in this little quandary of hers.
My dear mother, Nana Bess, and I are quite pathetic souls. We live to eat food and going to see Loki at the office would present us the opportunity to feast on Big Truck Taco for lunch. So we readily agreed to meet Loki at work (on my day off) to bring her something that she needed, which is not important to this tale. When we arrived at the office we saw that there was no one there but Loki and ChaCha. So Nana Bess & I had to get BTT to-go to bring back to the office. We waited and waited in line (for the most innovative Mexican street food with a twist) and finally returned to the office with our delicious spread. We ate downstairs in the basement (where Nana Bess got her own personal tour of Sparky’s shower in the filing room) and after devouring a breathtaking Beef Al Carbon & Crispy Cado taco, we set off with Loki to get her pictures fixed. Why we agreed to go on this adventure I’ll never know.
Loki insisted that she pump before we go, but since the pictures print right off the kiosk we told her that we should just go now and she could do it when she got back. I debated taking my own car, but before we could leave Loki had to rush back inside the find the picture c.d. to bring. Loki decided to take the original photos back into Walgreens first to get her money back after much bickering on the phone with the photo lady. Nana Bess and I chose to stay in the car thinking that she wouldn’t need our company on this short errand. After 25+ minutes went by, Loki came out of the store scowling. She had to listen to a long explanation from the photo lady on why the quality wasn’t good when all she wanted was her money back. She only got money back for the pictures she returned and she was already anxious about having to go back another time to return more pictures.
It was at this time (in between Walgreens and Kinko’s) that Loki realized she did not know where the photo c.d. was at again. As she drove, she reached all around her feet and dug in her purse for the disk (with no second thought to my safety in the back seat mind you) and came up empty-handed. Nana Bess, always eager to help and calm Loki, began frantically searching around her seat. She was not successful either and frazzled Loki became belligerent. “I’m freaking out here!” she shouted with her hair flying in disarray and her eyes wild. She should have yelled, “I’m losing my freaking mind!” instead, but perhaps that is just what I thought about the situation as I sat huddled in the back seat for fear of her retaliation against anything I might say or do…
It turns out that Nana Bess’s rump was sitting on the picture cd. We rushed inside Kinko’s, ready to print the photos and be on our way. Loki barged her way through the crowds until we reached the photo machine (picture a bright light from the sky shining down upon it and angels singing.) Like a pro, she punched the machine’s buttons and quickly had her order ready when suddenly an error popped up on the screen. Nana Bess, always ready to help, pushed “okay” to clear the screen. We waited… and we waited… but the pictures did not print.
Loki went to get a technician to fix the problem. So we sat and waited as he fiddled with the machine. Loki grumbled about her rock hard breasts for the hundredth time (since she didn’t get to pump) and a toothless man across the store kept staring at us (as Loki was always massaging and grabbing on said breasts.) Finally it was time to try again. Loki rushed through the prompts again selecting her order of the darling photos. It felt like we had miraculously diverted this cataclysmic disaster when the photos would not print a second time. The error screen came up again and this time we reprimanded Nana Bess before she could be so quick to help. Another tech came over to assist us and had to turn off the machine this time.
So we sat down at the table and tried to not count all the people going in and out before us as Loki and the tech started her order over and over again to no avail.. (Personally, I was just trying to figure out what all of those other machines even do and not stare at the woman in the sweat pants making brochures. “What could those things possibly say,” I wondered… And then cursing myself for not driving my own car.)
At last the tech figured out the problem and Loki was able to start her order again -for the 5th time. This time the photos printed and we all rejoiced because at this point, we had been in the store for an hour. Why we had to have Baby Blue’s photos that very day is beyond me! And being the selfish person that I am, I decided I would print a few photos out myself since I already had to sacrifice so much time for Loki’s photos. I selected black and white prints only, but half of them came out in color and in extra sizes.
Angry and irritated at the world we left the store and piled into the car. Nana Bess and I practically dumped Loki out on the side of the curb at work and drove off. We felt like kicking her, but we didn’t. I raced back to where I had met Nana Bess and she had left her car. As we pulled up to her car she began to dig in her purse for her keys.
I’m surprised she didn’t scream “I’m freaking out here!” at me, as she scrambled through the mass amounts of junk and paper she keeps crammed into her tiny handbag. She hopped out of my car to go peer in her car windows. And there they were. A shiny set of keys laying there in the front seat. She had rolled the window down far enough where I could fit my hand inside. But only my hand would fit and there was no way to reach the keys.
We passed being frustrated a long time ago… “Well, do you have a wire hanger in your car?” Nana Bess asked me, once again trying to think of a helpful solution. But as we all know, being the meticulously clean and organized person I am, I did NOT have anything in my car! I make a point to even empty out any trash there might be each time I get out. Even if it is just paper from a straw! But I popped my trunk to humor her and to see if there was anything inside since I don’t look in there much. There was nothing but a car jack and jumper cables…. and a broken curtain rod.
I grabbed the curtain rod and bent it so that it could go through the window and bend down towards the seat. There was a small decorative ball on the end of the rod that I used to manipulate the key rings. I pushed against the seat with the rod getting the key ring to hook on to the end. I lifted up ever so carefully as the keys dangled at the end of the rod. It only took a matter of seconds before I had twisted the rod out the window and then slowly inched the keys towards the window. Nana Bess’ hand grabbed the keys off the rod when they made it to the door and again, there was much rejoicing.
I was crowned the hero of the day (and could have won millions of dollars for my skills if I had been on a show like “Minute to Win It!”) And finally, we were both able to head towards home with our PERFECT pictures of Baby Blue in hand. After such a traumatic experience, that was both mentally and emotionally exhausting, we both vowed to never again go with Loki to develop pictures. We did agree to continue going to BTT. To save the world. One taco at a time.