Not a Mother's Day Story, well, maybe It is
I’m sure most of you know I have had some pretty serious health issues this past fall/winter. I thank God every day just to sit here and be able to write these stories. Honestly, there was a time or two, I wasn’t sure.
I am getting great test results from the doctors, which I find very encouraging. However, I am looking at a lengthy (up to a year) recovery. I have been advised not to expect to go back to a construction career any time soon. I’ve got some ideas for possibly a new career but haven’t pulled the trigger on any of them.
Our teachings tell us that our destinies may not be ours to decide.
As many of you know Elaine has been working from home (her choice) for the last twenty years. At the end of beervirus (Did it end?) Elaine was asked to return to the office, and she agreed to return two days a week.
Working from home enabled Elaine to attend my surgical procedures and get me to my related doctor's appointments. Elaine is/was able to alter her home/work schedule to accommodate what was going on in our lives.. She could work any hour of the day, including weekends.
What on earth am I talking about? This story is not about Elaine and her work schedule. It is about me. Although, I guess Elaine working from home plays a small part in this story.
My physical limitations, and windy, cold weather; have kept me from a paying job. I have spent hours and hours sitting behind Elaine (AT HOME) as she converses with engineers, and draws plans for electrical transmission lines. I might have mentioned before, Elaine is part of a team that designs the electrical poles and wires running from the dams, wind farms, and solar farms; to your microwaves and phone chargers.
I have the opportunity to get very political here and (construction language) off friends and foes alike, but I won’t. So, with that in mind, let’s get to the story.
During the past six months or so, I have listened to literally hundreds of conversations between Elaine and a slurry of engineers. Truthfully, some of it has been quite educational.
Recently, Elaine's company was awarded a contract to design over one-hundred-twenty MILES of powerlines. Pretty big deal, huh! Along with this new project, Elaine’s company has been employed to correct and update drawings for powerlines that were designed over twenty years ago. Elaine worked on the drawing WAY back then. No one associated with the design and construction of the twenty-year-old powerlines is still around, EXCEPT Elaine and a workmate engineer. Ironically, she is updating and correcting plans she drew over twenty years ago.
Please, have some patience. I know you are waiting for the part about me. I will get to me shortly.
Friday, Elaine was involved in a phone conversation with an engineer about the twenty-year-old drawings. Due to the consistently strong winds, I found myself sitting behind Elaine surfing the computer trying to entertain myself. I sit at the dining room table with my computer ready to play Solitare, which incidentally is the only computer game I have ever played. TMI?
I didn’t mean to, but I found myself eavesdropping on Elaine’s phone conversation. (Maybe not eavesdropping, maybe like accidentally hearing.) It seems the new personnel in charge of the twenty-year-old drawings would prefer a different font. Now, if you have ever met Elaine, several things that are non-negotiable. Things like weaving, earth tones, heated car seats, beets and goat cheese, politics, fear of parrots, and at the top of her list, FONTS! Elaine doesn't change fonts.
Should any of you have the pleasure of attending a sporting event with Elaine, it won't be long before you will receive a lecture on the lettering (fonts) of the team jerseys. Watching the Colorado Rockies playing Arizona Diamondbacks can be painful, and I'm not talking about the scores. Arizona wears shirts with D-Backs written across the front. Elaine has pointed out, that due to the FONT choice of the Diamondbacks, the "k" in D-Backs looks like an "h". The Arizona D-Bachs! ( pronounced D-B-ah-ches) You see, for Elaine fonts have consequences.
It's not like Elaine doesn't like the Diamondbacks, she just wants to fix their shirts.
This is where the story becomes about me. I know I could have gotten up and left the room, but I was in a trance. Elaine and this engineer spent over an hour talking about FONTS. I felt my brain go numb. I’m sorry but does anyone besides Elaine, the engineer, and someone at a power company, give a (construction language) about FONTS? Does anyone know the difference between Helvetica and any other font? I think I might have ditched school the day fonts were taught. Wait, I'm sure I ditched that day and maybe a couple more. Not Elaine, she not only was in class, but she was also paying attention.
If I could have one dollar for every time Elaine pointed out, "That font makes that sign unreadable", I could have bid against that Musk guy for Twitter.
Go ahead, use the wrong font! I dare you! You will be sitting in the corner for the next five hours reciting font names until you get it right.
Please, God, I need to get a job that the doctors will let me do. I just can’t listen to this stuff every day. Please God, if you could just show me the plan you have for me, it would be much appreciated. Let’s just say, if you are not ready to reveal your plan, could we just get the wind to stop so I can go outside?
OK, today is Mother’s Day. My mother passed away in 1987. There is not a day that goes by that I don’t wish I could speak with her again. Unlike some moms, my mom kept me on a righteous path, or she tried.. Oh, I couldn't let her know everything I was doing, but I stayed out of jail and no one was hurt. Sorry, Mom, nothing was your fault. I know I didn't always make her proud, but she always made me proud. I know she could advise me with this Helvetica thing. (Helvetica is the only font name I know.) Mom wouldn't understand Elaine's obsession with all things font, but she would understand and take Elaine's side in any font-related argument. Any argument for that matter. She always had Elaine's back. Always did. Mom knew Elaine would straighten my (construction language) out.
Hey Mom. I write stories and put them on the internet, People tell me they read them. I don't want to believe it either.
As I was wrapping up this story, (OK, I wrote this Friday. I have Mother's Day plans.) the engineer telephoned. It was determined the new standard font for the old drawings will be Arial and Romans. For those of you that give a (construction language), I Iooked up Arial and Romans. Yep, they are fonts. I wanted to go outside but the wind hadn't stopped, so I had time I wasn't using and looked up fonts.
Please, God! I am going to need the Serenity Prayer when I'm finished writing. The Serenity Prayer? Look it up! It is not just for fonts, but then, it does work for fonts.
Back to Mother’s Day. Elaine is not my mother, but for the past 45 (+) years she has been more than my mother.
She has been my everything, especially over the last six months. No one has worked harder for my recovery. I don’t know what I can ever do to thank her. Honey, I love you. I am getting stronger every day, thanks to you. Maybe soon I will be able to put on socks without your help.
Happy Mother’s Day! It is my dad's heavenly birthday. TMI? Maybe. The mothers of Ukraine need our support and prayers.
This story has the approval of Mothers, including Elaine
Our crazy lives!