Professional Nerdy Girl
Follow Me

Dave Pedri: Fun Ruiner

By M Davies   /     Jun 24, 2018  /     Community Service, Hilarity, Into the Void, Misc/Crap, Rejection, The WTF File  /     0 Comment

I had a blog post all planned out to make fun of Luzerne County roads, but Dave Pedri ruined it for me. THANKS A LOT DAVE PEDRI.

I can’t really complain, I still got what I wanted, but I STILL WILL, because you know that’s how I roll.


Allow me to explain….


Dave Pedri and I go back all the way back to 2010 when he was in my Leadership Wilkes-Barre class. He’s a cool cat, levelheaded, funny and a good listener. Fast forward 8 years and now he’s the manager of Luzerne County. As in, the. entire. county. I have a love/hate relationship with this county (my home) for a variety of reasons depending on the week and how hangry and/or PMSing I am that particular day. Dave is and has been a good friend and I hope he can see past my bitchiness.


My latest bone of contention is Luzerne County’s $5 Vehicle Registration Fee. The fee allegedly will be used fix roads and bridges. Here’s a convenient list of said roads for your review thanks to our local Times Leader newspaper. I’m not sure how or why Luzerne County decided to get into the road management business, but at some point, they did. It was a poor decision. I think, from what I’ve heard and what I’ve read, (I could be wrong) it was because they were offloading the burden of local municipalities. A lot of these roads are in Hanover Township (the industrial park specifically), the back mountain and in Mountain Top/Hazleton areas. Make no mistake, I do not oppose a $5 fee to fix infrastructure, HOWEVER….


Luzerne County is a known corruption capitol. Need I mention the names Skrepenak, Conahan, Ciavarella? AHEM. Not the best track record to say the least.


That is not to say the Titanic is still headed toward the iceberg. The ship may have been righted, or may be on its way to being righted. However, PennDOT is still taking $.77 of every gallon of gas you pump for infrastructure. Source: http://www.erienewsnow.com/story/37171370/no-gas-tax-hike-scheduled-in-pa-in-2018 

Hell, we are still paying tax on alcohol in this state for the 1936 Johnstown Flood.




My original point of this post was because I saw a story on WNEP this week about Domino’s pothole repair plan. In case you didn’t know what this was, or haven’t heard about it, basically Domino’s guarantees that if a customer damages their pizza before they make it home, the company will replace the pizza for free. HOWEVER, now, they’re making sure potholes can’t destroy the pie as well.

I, of course, laughed for about 5 minutes like a crazy person because I vowed that when I got out of the hospital, my first order of business was to go and buy a pizza and start driving around all of the roads that are KNOWN PROBLEMS so that I could get them fixed and get free pizza. I started making a list….here it is:

“Paving for Pizza”

  • Hillside Road (county road)
  • Chase Road (county road)
  • Old 115 (county road)
  • Blackman Street (Wilkes-Barre)
  • Main Road (county road in Sweet Valley)
  • Rte 115 (state road)

This list was dated 6/13/18.


On Thursday, June 21st, Mr. David Pedri messaged me with the following information:

Road and bridge crew just got done on hillside road. Reporting to main road sweet valley tomorrow.


I drove the road yesterday and today. It’s a magical dream. It’s as smooth as a baby’s bottom.

A few weeks ago, I wrote this little gem:

Main Road in Sweet Valley looks like it’s a road in a third world country. There are less holes in a piece of Swiss Cheese.

On Monday, May 28th, there is a Fireman’s parade in tandem with the annual Memorial Day weekend Fair, which is presented by the Volunteer Ambulance/Fire companies. Here’s a link to the Facebook event:


The road is still deplorable condition. The parade usually lines up at Ross Elementary and travels down to the area of North Lake Road. As a tax payer and a parent who has to travel that road often for school events, I am CONCERNED about this. We are hosting fire companies/ambulances etc from all over the Back Mountain. It’s embarrassing, but in addition, I’d hate to see another community’s emergency vehicles have a tire or axle taken out due to county negligence. In addition, will the parade of larger vehicles cause more damage to the road?

I called Karen Boback’s Office who referred me to Larry Plesh in the Luzerne County Road Dept. He says there’s a drainage issue that needs to be addressed before the road can be resurfaced. I’m not an idiot, I know there’s a series of events that needs to happen to get things fixed up the correct way. But when you have several businesses, churches, A SCHOOL and the emergency vehicles all on the same road swerving into opposite lanes to avoid potholes, well, someone could die. It’s a major safety concern. Can they not at least PATCH the road until the other issues can be addressed? This is utterly ridiculous.

Is Luzerne County holding our roads hostage until they get their 5 dollars? What is going on here?

If you can shed some light on this matter, it would be appreciated. Thank you!


I stand corrected and apologize. Dave Pedri has and continues to shock me with his kindness and ability to listen. I’m not normally a political blogger and HATE HATE HATE talking politics, but the man is doing as good of a job as anyone could do under the circumstances he inherited and for that I am grateful.


However, he still ruined the original concept for this blog post and now I’m pissed off that I’m not getting a free pizza.


Yo Dave, where’s my Domino’s?

Continue Reading Quick Read

240 Involuntary Hours in the Psych Ward – a journal (part 1)

By M Davies   /     Jun 23, 2018  /     30 Day @Neilbytes Blogging Challenge, 30 days of truth, Annoyances, Blogging, Community Service, Family, Into the Void, Medical Issues, Misc/Crap, Mommyhood, NEPA, Pittsburgh, Quotes, Rejection, The WTF File, TV Rants, Uncategorized, Wacky PA Weather  /     2 Comments


(My 14th Wedding Anniversary)

Morse code is not the same as pulse code and 5 million other things I learned at the phone company by Michelle Ann Hryvniak.

<research facts go here>

(I’ll come back to those later on when I’m able to use my telephone)

Telco in a box diagram drawing. Look at me. I should have been in Tech Staff.

6/12/18 – 6am

I’m supposed to have a job interview in 2 days, but I’m not allowed to go. I also have a PFA meeting.

I’m never getting out. Ever. It’s impossible, much like the Widespread Panic Song.

I have so much to do this week. There’s no way I’ll be able to finish it from inside of these 4 walls.


6/12/18 – 9am

I never thought I’d say this, but I miss Pittsburgh. It’s such a great city with spunk. I miss the 28 traffic and the friendly sweet people – some of the nicest I’ve ever met in my whole life. I love the yinzer accent too…I am now able to spot it a mile away. I miss sleeping in my own bed. I miss Saxonburg which I firmly believe is Sweet Valley’s sister city/town/borough.

<reasons why go here>

  • 18656 vs. 16056 (fact numero uno)
  • History of Mihalishin Road aka Andy’s Road aka Linden Lane
  • History of Sweet Valley via curmudgeon guy (note to self: find that letter and poem about Will Sill and write about that in a later post)

6/12/18 – no time listed

My Journey – My Goals

My immediate goal is to complete my divorce and I will with the help of one of my attorneys.

Then I will finally start my dream job on 7/9 at AccuWeather. I am a self-proclaimed weather dork since birth and have watched the Weather Channel since birth. I have watched the Weather Channel almost exclusively. I collect books about weather and have an extensive collection. I have written several blog posts on the topic. It was my original career goal to become a meteorologist. Maybe if I can manage this class and overcome my social anxiety and finish school I can actually achieve my dream. This dream has been buried inside of me since a teenager – it’s time to act on it.

I’m pretty enough

I’m smart enough

and gosh darnit



Wed, 6/13/18 – 6am

(2 months since I left WQED)


thryv (thrive)

Write the story about the wedding dress fiasco with the in-laws. Explain how I was inducted into the DUVCW officially, but that it was also time change weekend and how the crazy in-laws (or as a former co-worker used to refer to them as…”outlaws”) kicked me out of the wedding and the family all because they couldn’t communicate when the dress fitting was for me – A FUCKING SHIFT WORKER.

Write a blog post about almost dying on Memorial Day

Did you know…

Studies have suggested that gifted people (much like my daughter which I birthed) often have bad handwriting because their brains are working faster than their hands. XD XD LAWLS <3

“If you want to be happy, you have to be happy on purpose. When you wake up, you can’t just wait to see what kind of day you’ll have. You have to decide what kind of day you’ll have.”

6/13/18 – 1pm

Suggested topics for blog posts: What spending 5 days in a nut house has done to me, Lee Park house origin

Reminder to call about my IATSE 820 hiatus status

A poem:



Beginning Again


Never cease to fly if held down

A different view

It comes back around again

Words I never told you

Walking free

You showed me what needed to be shown

Beyond myself

I will never see the world the same way

Beauty stands before you

The path I have chose

There’s one memory of us

We are all that we are

What I have I become?

When I fall, I fly

What they see

This can’t be the end

Your Soul is in your eyes

I will not surrender

Let the light shine in the darkest of nights

All these shapes and colors are so it doesn’t hurt so badly

A magic moment


Philly sucks!

Thurs, 6/14/18 6am

Today was supposed to be my appointment to leave to get my sutures out at Geisinger. I am almost certain that I won’t be able to. I have to do in this Tennessee Redneck owned hospitaly where many people have access to my medical records. My doctor tried to get a hold of my husband twice for counseling.


What a shock.

Just kidding.

I really just want them out because they are so uncomfortable. Not to mention, I have to run to the bathroom literally every five minutes and everyone here thinks I’m an actual nut job.


I’m a survivor. I almost died. I was in the ICU for 3 days and the first conscious memory I had was ripping the breathing tube out of my face. The last thing I remember before that was my Ambulance ride and being rushed to emergency surgery.

Thurs. 6/14/18 7am



I feel like a brand new person.

Thank you, Jesus!

Thurs. 6/14/18 7:15am


Please Jesus, Mary and Joseph.

“Can’t spell cheapskates without CHS”

*revised A-List*

Thurs. 6/14/18 10am

I met this really great guy in here. One that actually listens and respects me. It’s amazing that such a person could exist. After 15 years of an abusive marriage, I am finally calling it quits. I cannot be treated like a piece of dirt any longer. This has been a long time coming. We’ve grown apart mentally, physically and etc. (redacted 2 sentences)

Thurs. 6/14/18 8pm

I slept most of the afternoon and it was lovely. I was woken up by my attorney with good news (hopefully). My 401k, which I sold off, was distributed and let the games begin. I will be moving back home (TEMPORARILY) to Blakeslee and then headed to Saxonburg to get my stuff.

*now writing in pen vs. pencil*

He drained the bank account. On what is anyone’s guess. I think I have a pretty good idea.

He’s running scared now, he won’t return any of my belongings, or at least the correct ones. Not very smart.

I want my laptop and my tablet back – those will be coming home with me next. As well as my car, and of course, my children. Posession is 9/10 of the law, so I plan on fighting this fight well up to the supreme court. And I have SEVERAL character witnesses willing to testify on my behalf.

But anyway….focusing on the positive so that I can get the hell out of here.

I’m dreaming of sushi, soup, and steak…..hmmmm….maybe hibachi on my first meal out of here. Please and thank you

<3 Michelle

PS- Remember to PayPal atty

Fri. 6/15/18 4am

I had a pen that was given to me by one of the nurses taken away from one of the nurses that I was given to it from.

I am a danger to myself with a pen? Ok. What am I going to do? Draw on myself? Good gravy.


Peace Out,


“This is one of life’s little potholes”


Why am I me? All of the signs were there to leave R—. I just never could find the courage. Somehow I found my balls and they were right here all along — on my G-D chest. This shit with the Davies family pisses me off. They are like a cult. Either it’s their way or the highway (aka thrown out of the family). I’ve been thrown out of the family 3 times so far. Third time is the charm. If I ever to talk to those people again, it will be too soon.




I feel lost when he’s not here and calm when he is here. That’s a start.

Cant wait to get out and explore it more.

Thaaaaaaat’s all folks

<3 Michelle


My grandmother always says “things will be better before you get married”


they actually get worse

(On Monday)



-Remember how to research to legally change name and cost

-Remember to talk to IATSE guy

-Book title idea: “Dodging the Potholes of my Mind”

Fri. 6/15 (no time)

Wherein Michelle Davies calls the KDKA control room by mistake, a blog post. As I was attempting to pay up my union dues for IATSE 820 local REPRESENT, I was given 3 different phone numbers for the leader. The first one was an incorrect phone number. The second one was for THE KDKA CONTROL ROOM. Finally, the third number worked. I will be continuing my membership on a hiatus status….just in case. One less thing to worry about I suppose

Blog post idea: Patch town names

Book title idea: “Tales from Adult IV, NOT! Floor 2”

Sat. 6/16 (no time)


Our story begins now.

Turning over a new leave

Have a wonderful day beautiful.

Thank you. <3


I finally read my 302 paperwork.

[He’s not here and I miss him so much. It hurts my heart so much. I miss him]

I’m greatful to be alive today! Considering that I almost died on 5/31.

It’s the little things.

It seems wrong to be attached so earlier on…

…but I cannot help myself




Continue Reading Quick Read

North East vs. Northeast Pennsylvania

By M Davies   /     Feb 27, 2018  /     Misc/Crap, NEPA, Pittsburgh  /     3 Comments

I got into a conversation with a cashier last night and it took me a good 20 or so minutes to realize we were on two completely different plains of existence.

The gentlemen in question saw that I was wearing my WQED hoodie and started talking to me about people he knew that worked here and how he got the chance to meet Mister Rogers and tour the studio. Unfortunately, Mister Rogers, the set and the show are well before my time at this station. I assume that most of his friends have retired, because the names did not sound familiar.

— Oh yeah, by the way, did I tell you I now work at WQED, “the Mister Rogers station”? More on that another time. —

Anyway, I told him I wish I had the opportunity to meet more people in Pittsburgh, but that I did have a few friends from my jobs here. He of course, wanted to know where I was from and I said “Northeast Pennsylvania.” I find that by saying this, it triggers some knee jerk reaction about Philadelphia. In this case, he said “North East Pennsylvania? OH YEAH! I’ve been to the wine festival up there.” (note the difference in spacing)

I know there are a ton of wine festivals in Northeast PA, but a wine drinker I am not, so I mentioned the only two I could think of off the top of my head. “Montage Mountain? Tunkhannock?” He looked at me like I grew another head.

“No, it’s by the train station,” he said. “There’s an Italian restaurant we ate at near the tracks that was really good.”

Me: “Oh? Maybe you were in Scranton or East Stroudsburg?”

Him: *another puzzled look* “It’s by Lake Erie.”

Me:  “Wait….what?”

He said “Well, you’re from up by Lake Erie, right? That’s where North East is.”



I told him I was NorthEASTERN Pennsylvania. “You know, by Scranton, Wilkes-Barre, the Poconos.” Another blank stare.

It took us a few more minutes of back and forth for us to figure out what the hell we were both talking about and then we had a good chuckle.

As it turns out, there is a small borough near Lake Erie, in Erie county, called “North East” and when you pair it with Pennsylvania it sounds like you’re referring to Northeastern, Pennsylvania (NEPA). These are two entirely different areas clear across the state from each other. I would have had no idea that this town even existed if it wasn’t for this awkward conversation. After I got a chance to sit down, relax, and boot up my computer last night, I googled North East, Pennsylvania. According to the borough’s website, the region is known for it’s fruit growing especially cherries and grapes. Welch Foods has a plant in North East and it is one of the area’s largest employers. There is an annual Cherry Festival in the summer and an annual Wine Country Harvest Festival in the fall — this must be the wine festival the cashier was referring to during our chat.

Taken from the North East Wiki

According to some other friends, there’s a rail museum (Lake Shore Railway Museum) and a hotel that’s on the National Register of Historic Places (Short’s Hotel). Additionally and equally confusing/hilarious, there’s a North East Fair, not to be confused with the Northeast Fair near Pittston.

Lesson learned! When you’re referring to Northeast PA on the western side of the state, it’s just easier to call it NEPA or give geographical reference points. Otherwise people will just assume you are from Erie.

The horror!

Continue Reading Quick Read

Who says you can’t go home?

By M Davies   /     Feb 07, 2016  /     Into the Void, Misc/Crap  /     2 Comments

*Cue that terrible Bon Jovi song*


In my travels recently, I found that the house where I spent most of my childhood went up for sale.  We moved from the place in Hanover Township in 1989 to the Poconos where I lived until 2000.  Out of sheer curiosity and sick fascination, I decided that I was going to pretend in being interested in buying the house just so I could take a tour of it and hash out some old memories (with regrets to the realtors and the seller).


DSCF3022     DSCF3020


The outside of the house pretty much looks the same way I remember it.  It’s kind of an oddly shaped a-frameish house.  Standing on the porch is the realtor who was kind enough to show me the inside even though I had no intentions of buying.  The small box area with the rectangular window is where my playroom used to be.  Before that it was a porch.  My parents had it enclosed to add square footage (for my toys).  I knew this, but the realtor didn’t.  Before the yellow siding was installed, it had the ugliest mutli-colored asbestos siding.


DSCF3018     dogs


My Mom and I standing somewhere near the rock wall on Easter.


Facing the opposite direction is a hill with a lot of brush that looks into the yards of people that are a street (Strand Street) over.  Notice the neatly stacked rocks and bricks?  My grandfather ALWAYS did this.  Every house that my parents have lived in, he stacked rocks like this.  This area was used to store garbage cans, lawn tools and also had a dog pen.  Say hello to my Dad’s dogs Barney (the bloodhound) and Penny (the beagle).  They’re dead about three times over now and the dog pen is long gone.  I didn’t mean that to sound as morbid as it did.  I remember Barney to be a good dog.  Penny was a little psychotic.  She escaped several times and I think eventually was found and kept by a paper boy.


DSCF3010 mirror


Ahhhhh yes.  The mirrors.  Essentially the entire left most wall in the living room is one large mirror.  My Dad was a glazier, my grandfather was a glazier and my uncle was a glazier so this house is full of mirrors.  I was always fascinated with the design of the living room mirror.  It would catch the afternoon sun and reflect tiny rainbows on the floor.  While fascinating, it was obviously impossible to keep clean because of tiny fingers.  Mirrors are supposed to give the illusion of a room being larger than it is.  The room was a lot smaller than I remember it, but I am a lot bigger than the last time I stood in this spot.


shera mom


The 80s were a confusing time for interior decorating, apparently.  Here’s a look at the opposite side of the room then and now.


shera2 DSCF3011


The first photo is a little blurry, but it was me in my She-Ra: Princess of Power costume.  My parents weren’t the best photographers.  The wrought iron railing on the stairs has since been replaced with wooden railing and banisters.


DSCF2996 DSCF2998


Here’s my old bedroom.  I thought it would be more exciting, but this is it.  See those two brackets on the wall near the window?  Two shelves used to be there.  They held ceramics that my grandmother made for me.  I also had two large clowns hanging on my wall.  I was terrified of them.  I am still terrified of clowns to this day because of those damn ceramic clowns.  It is said that if you don’t control your fears they control you.  I’ve since been to the circus with my children and have been ok.  I don’t like clowns, but I can deal.  Bees on the other hand.  No way in hell.  I will still scream bloody murder if one of those winged hell beasts comes near me.  The door leads to the old enclosed porch/converted playroom I talked about earlier.  It’s just a small room that has nothing more than a window and panelling.




There are 3ish bathrooms inside the house.  One on each level.  I had to laugh at the upstairs bathroom though.  I specifically remember the purple sink and toilet from my childhood.  Good lord, it looks like they haven’t been updated since then (if not longer).  I don’t understand the appeal of bathroom fixtures that are any other color than white.  It’s just bizarre.  As I said before, the 80s must have been a confusing time for interior decorating.


DSCF3008 DSCF3009


Remember what I said about the mirrors?  We’ve now headed down to the front room of the current-day basement.  There’s a mirror on the back wall and a mirror on the ceiling.  And, before you start filling your head with perverted thoughts, this is the spot where the pool table was.  There was a kick-ass chandelier hanging where the normal light fixture is now, but my parents took that with them to the new house.  There’s also mirrors along the staircase downstairs.  Mirrors obviously don’t photograph real well, so I’ll spare you.  For anyone who has ever wondered why it pains me to look at myself in a mirror can now know the true horror of walking around a house where you constantly are in a mirror somewhere.  Sometimes I don’t want to look at myself, thankyouverymuch.  Especially after I’ve just woken up.  No one needs to see that.


DSCF3014 me


And now we’re back upstairs in the dine-in kitchen.  I remember that my parents installed the chair rail right around the time we sold the house, but I have no recollection of this wallpaper (which is hideous).  I also have no recollection of the panelling that was there before that (bottom photo).  Panelling irks me in ways that cannot be described with words.  The only solution is to grab a sledge and take it out stud by stud to put it out of its misery.


That’s the end of the tour.  The house was rather small, as most city houses are.  The house met our needs for a specific period in time and then we outgrew it.  From my understanding by reading the info sheet, the same person that purchased the house from my parents still owns it to this day.  I am not sure of the reason for the sale.


It was a fun trip down memory lane and I’d have to say if you ever have the opportunity to see the house that you grew up in (assuming it isn’t the one you live in now) go and do it!  You never know what kind of memories it will trigger.  You may not be able to go home, but you can certainly remember it fondly.  Here are a few last minute photos that didn’t fit anywhere else…


Thanks for the memories 979 South Main!


Continue Reading Quick Read

Northern Wind

By M Davies   /     Jan 25, 2015  /     Blogging, Misc/Crap  /     6 Comments

I’ve been falling behind on reading some of my favorite blogs lately.  I try to binge read when I can, but it can get overwhelming.  As of this morning, I was mostly caught up on all of my favorites (most of which can be found in my sidebar), but I was saving one for last.  The one I’m specifically referring to is PostSecret.  For those of you that don’t know, Frank Warren, the site’s founder, has been blogging photos of secrets on postcards all written in anonymity since 2005.  I’ve been a fan and loyal reader since the beginning.  It really is a brilliant, beautiful, moving and intriguing blog (along with a million other adjectives).  Some Sunday mornings, I laugh. On other Sunday mornings, I cry. But mostly, I’m thankful that people are brave enough to share their secret with the world.  Don’t take my word for it – go and check it out for yourself if you haven’t already.  I own 3 of the 6 books that Frank has published.  Someday, I will get my hands on the others.  I hope to go to one of his live events one of these years as time allows.


With planning NEPA BlogCon, attending MN BlogCon, the PTO Vice Presidency, work and the holidays… I haven’t had much “me” time.  I’m slowly, but surely getting caught up on my email, cleaning and whatever else I’ve allowed to fall to the wayside (*ahem* blog reading).  According to my Digg Reader, I haven’t read any of the Postsecret posts since late September.  Whoosh.  I was excited and overwhelmed to “Digg” in.  It was an emotional roller coaster to say the least and I loved every second of it.


One of the postcards really spoke to me.  I clipped the part that I loved most to share with you (below):


“Northern Wind”

Northern Wind




I can relate to this postcard in so many ways so I was curious to find the author of the “poem”.  To Google, Batman!  It turns out it was actually a song that the anonymous author quoted.  The song is by the singer “City and Colour“.  I immediately opened my Spotify and listened to the song and fell head over heels in love with it.  It’s been saved to my playlist.  Music is probably my only salvation on my long-ass commute back and forth to work daily, so I’m always looking for new stuff to listen to.


I’m kind of embarrassed to admit I’ve been listening to a bunch of hipster snotty indie rock lately and I feel weird about that.  I pretty much love all music (save for Cawk/Jawk Rawk), but this wasn’t necessarily a genre I’ve explored before.  I’ve Shazamed quite a bit of indie stuff lately and I solely blame Sirius XM for this.  Sirius exposes me to stuff I wouldn’t hear normally on Top 40 terrestrial radio.  Here’s my list of recently Shazamed stuff that I’ve fallen in love with and am listening to.  Feel free to suggest more to me!  Caring is sharing.


Song Name – Artist

1.  Electric Feel – MGMT

2. It is What it Is – Blood Orange

3.  Hummer – Foals

4.  Come A Little Closer – Cage The Elephant

5.  Trojans – Atlas Genius

6.  At The Show – Marco Benevento

7.  Dangerous – Big Data feat. Joywave

8.  Geronimo – Sheppard

9.  Trying to be Cool – Phoenix

10.  Habits – Tove Lo (probably more pop, but I can relate to the lyrics)


Shazam and Spotify are excellent ways of discovering new music and I highly recommend them.  Getting an honorable mention: Pandora and Slacker Radio.  The free listening limits of these music streaming services kind of drive me batshit as I always hit my limit before the end of the month.  As a result of my music addicition, I finally broke down and bought a full membership to Spotify.  It is worth it’s weight in gold because I can stream it from anywhere with an internet connection….tablets, laptops, phones, my car, my TV, etc…..


And as for PostSecret, I highly recommend that too.  Not only is it an amazing blog, but as I found out this morning, also a great source for finding new music!  You can send your own secrets by using the address below:





Enjoy enjoy the rest of your Sunday.

Continue Reading Quick Read

This week in ancient history, a pictorial

By M Davies   /     Mar 14, 2013  /     Misc/Crap, TV Rants  /     1 Comment

Yesterday was my husband’s birthday.  It seems every year in recent memory, I’ve been taken away from home on the day or the week of his birthday.  I had to work on his birthday this year, so I wasn’t home, but at least I was in the same zipcode.  As you’ll see below, I’ve been far and wide on this week in recent history.


First, I have to start with the obligatory look back at the blizzard of 1993 which happened 20 years ago.  Damn, I feel old.  I was in sixth grade at the time and my brother was in Kindergarten.  I vaguely remember a conversation with my teacher at the time.  It went something like this…


Mr. Chig:  Michelle, can you close these blinds for the windows?

Me:  Ok, no problem but, why?

Mr. Chig:  If they are open, the attention is focused on what’s going on outside and not on me.

Me:  Do you think we are going to get out school early?

Mr. Chig:  I’d say there’s a good chance.


We did get out early that day.  In my adolescent mind, the blizzard was already paying off!  When my brother and I got home, we watched the news (on WYOU *ahem*) and learned about how bad our backs would be aching after shoveling.  The outlook wasn’t good.  Especially since my Dad had pneumonia at the time.  My Dad was/is a heavy smoker, and got really sick and was not able to do anything strenuous.  That left my Mom, my brother, and I to do all of shoveling in the sub-zero temperatures.  Let’s just say , it wasn’t one of the more favorite times in my life.  I managed to dig up these pictures:



(My Mom’s Dodge Dynasty and my Dad’s Dodge Ram buried in the snow)


(Russell in the snow pile, my mom digging behind him)


3 years ago – in 2010, I was working for Kraft Foods.  I can’t really give the details of the project due to confidentiality agreements, but I was on a team of individuals for support of a project that involved cell phone technology.  There was going to be a big training session in Green Bay, Wisconsin that I was asked to attend….a train the trainer type of scenario.  I always liked the Green Bay Packers so I was excited to go for that fact alone (forget that we were going to GREEN BAY in the DEAD WINTER).  We arrived in Green Bay on the Sunday of Rich’s birthday week and were to depart on Friday.  Welp.  Green Bay was having an unusually warm winter, which was causing thick fog to form.  Our flight was cancelled out of Green Bay and after much shuffling, we managed to get a flight out of Milwaukee on Saturday (Rich’s birthday) in the evening.  This required a 2 hour drive south and another overnight stay.  I think the flight went from Milwaukee to Chicago and from Chicago back to AVP.  The flight from Chicago to AVP was very choppy.  I thought for sure we were going to die. I’ve never seen a flight I’ve been on rock back and forth so much.  I think I got home after midnight that night and had to be in the Wilkes-Barre St. Patrick’s Day parade the next day.  How I managed to function after all of that, I’ll never know.  Here are some pictures from the trip:



(Me at Lambeau Field Gates)


(This was further back into the stadium at the gates – terrible hair, but the fog was causing 100% humidity, so whatevs)


(Brett Favre’s Steakhouse – we ate here one night….I had my first oyster.  It had bacon and cheese, so I’m not sure it counts)


(The coolest jeep known to man)


(There were a bunch of these statues all over the city – of famous players)


(Click to expand image…Where’s Waldo?  Somewhere between Green Bay and Milwaukee Wisconsin!)


(2 days later, at the W-Barre St. Patrick’s parade – this time for Leadership Wilkes-Barre)


(Here’s an extended group photo – only 2 project groups participated, the BILAA Little League Rehab project and Helping Paws)


(With Tux and my BILAA Group members)


That brings us to 2011.  Another year, another parade.  On Rich’s birthday….AGAIN.  This time I was in the Wilkes-Barre St. Patrick’s Day for Kraft Foods.  We managed to score several “big” vehicles for the parade…including the Weenie Mobile.  There was always a bunch of character costumes we had.  Stuff I’ve never even heard of.  A Polly-O parrot?  A cheesy dinosaur?  I don’t remember any of these characters.  And of course everyone knows the Kool-Aid man.  It was my idea to have the Kool-Aid man jump out of a sheet of paper and yell “OH YEAH!” right in front of the WYLN camera.  It worked out well.  Gabby and I were on a float that was tagging behind all of the characters.  We were throwing Kraft snack packs into the crowd.  Behind us were the Weenie Mobile and a mac truck.  Here’s a picture:


(Gabby and I and a weenie mobile makes three)


2012 rolls around and I have another job in another industry at another company.  Travelocity, to be exact.  The week of Rich’s birthday last year, I was to be in training in Texas at the Sabre Headquarters.  Sabre is the holding company of Travelocity.  The trip was a hot mess from the moment it was planned until the time we landed back on the ground in Avoca.  I’ve been in Texas before.  Navigating the roads around DFW is not a treat.  I’ve driven in a few different states, and Texas by far is the most confusing.  I had a GPS with me and it could not keep up with all of the on and off ramps to the freeways.  I traveled with a co-worker that I barely knew on the flight down and back.  When we arrived to the airport, we were to rent a vehicle to pick up 2 other co-workers at the airport.  We talked through email, but I had no idea what these people looked like.  Imagine how fun it is to pick up someone up at an airport that you are not familiar with and have never met!  GOOD TIMES.  (Can you detect the sarcasm here?)


I was able to find Donna somewhat easily (I only had to circle the airport 25 times to find the right gate).  She was from Long Island and had a thick New York accent.  She was very blunt with the way she said things.  I liked that about her.  Kelly was traveling from Nashville and had a southern drawl.  Her flight got delayed and spent all of Monday morning stranded in the Houston airport.  We couldn’t get a hold of her and didn’t know this until circling the airport about 80 times and making numerous calls and texts to her.  We were running late and hadn’t eaten, so we quickly stopped to get a bite on the way to the office.  We arrived 5 minutes late tops.  Our trainer was pissed.  As a matter of fact, she was pissed every time we were more than 1 second late for anything – even coming back from lunch in a building we’ve never been in before.  It was very irritating.  One morning I got unintentionally lost….I think we arrived 10-15 minutes late and the woman looked like she was going to rip out my throat and tap dance on it.  Yeah hi, I don’t live here.  I’m not familiar with roads, jackass.


I quickly realized that the training wasn’t geared toward my job function.  It was geared toward the sales managers – I was an analyst.  I spent most of the day on Social Media when the trainer wasn’t looking.  I don’t understand why I needed to stay for the full 5 days, when really maybe 1.5 days only pertained to me.  It boggles the mind.  After Kelly, Donna, Chris and I got better acquainted (days 2-5) we kind of stuck together like glue and went out each night or stayed at the hotel and drank for the rest of the trip.  It was the only way to get through the mind numbing training and maze of roads that I always got lost on.


(This was from our karaoke night)


(This is Kelly posing near the wall of Popes at a family style restaurant we went to one night.  She was going through a messy divorce at the time and this trip was a breath of fresh air for her)


(Here’s a group shot before we headed for our last day of training…we were relieved it was over)


(This was the first and probably the last time I will drive a Volvo and/or anything with Texas plates)



Going on at the same time last year — The H&B Expo


I was trolling Ryan Leckey’s Twitter feed while in training and seen this picture.  It made me realize where I needed to be.  And it wasn’t counting how many bundled or unbundled hotel packages were sold in Orlando the previous week.


The truth is, I was keeping a big secret from everyone.  Shortly after I started at Travelocity, I applied for another job.  Few people knew about it – the important ones.  I had an interview for a job at WNEP right before I headed to Texas.  I didn’t know where it was going to go or even if I was in the running or not.  I had nothing to lose by applying and interviewing, so I just went for it.  After visiting WNEP on 2 other occasions and meeting various department heads, I was hired to be the IT engineer there.  For once in my life, everything seemed to fall into place.  For the two years prior to that, I’ve been throwing jobs at the wall to see if they would stick like spaghetti, and so far this one has.  I’ll be at the station for an entire year on April 23rd this year.  I haven’t spent a full year at a job since I left Kraft in 2011.  Can you believe it?  Be still my wild heart or whatever.


This year for Rich’s birthday, I was home….I made dinner and had a birthday cake with the kids.  On Friday there will be party for the family.


And I am finally in the right place.

Continue Reading Quick Read