August: Ramsey County

Okay, so I borrowed the title from a play that was turned into an Oscar nominated film starring Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts that I never saw. I’ve become a broken record of posting about not posting, and not posting about not posting, but the worse part is, I haven’t been writing my manuscript in lieu of posting either.

But, the roughest rough draft first version of the full manuscript of my CYOA book will be done on Saturday, come hell or high water. So, look for more posts here soon!

I’ve been eating at the cafeteria of the hospital just up the road from my office. The food’s pretty good, not too pricey, and every once in a while they have “broasted chicken day” * or “Mexican haystack day” **, both of which everyone goes nuts over, from what I hear. I’ve been trying to eat less sodium lately, but I happened to glance at the salt packet basket*** (because, apparently, that is a thing) and I noticed that the salt packets had different colored dots on them: hot pink, yellow, green. Neat, I thought, taking a closer look. Bland,” the pink one read. That’s weird, I thought, picking up the green one. “Regular.” Okay, I thought, maybe one’s saltier than the other. I grabbed the yellow one: “Sugar Free.” So don’t worry, guys, I ate the sugar free salt. I reasoned it out (because they contain the exact same ingredients): I think they’re so people who have restricted diets know which ones they are allowed to have. I guess salt is okay for anything but a salt-free/low sodium diet.*****

I love sugar free salt!

I love sugar free salt!

Life’s been anything but bland, however. As you read this (well, if you’re reading this on Thursday morning) I’m in one of two training sessions at an overnight all-staff meeting/retreat (retreating?): Self-Defense or Medical Emergencies. Don’t worry, I’m taking both, I just don’t know which one will be first. Much of my work time has been devoted to various projects for this retreating: photocopying handouts, creating organizational charts, and putting together a PowerPoint–I now know how to create scrolling content! And embed YouTube videos!–which are things I enjoy doing (well, maybe not as much the photocopying, but I really don’t mind that). I love that I get to be creative at work, and it’s nice to have a finished product. There’s been a flurry of back-and-forth emails, though, because these projects are collaborative, and Monday and Tuesday this week have been busy.

As part of this, I got to sit in on a meeting for the planning committee for the all-staff meeting (and yes, I am one of those people who actually likes those kinds of meetings, both the planning and the all-staff stuff). The person in charge of the long-ago aforementioned training sessions had sent out an email from which we were supposed to pick two of three choices: Self-Defense, Medical Emergencies, and Workplace Bullying. When asked for an update on the sessions, the person said, “Self-Defense is all-set and ready to go, there was an issue with the Medical Emergencies, but it’s been taken care of. Most people signed up for those two, so if anyone signed up late or didn’t sign up, I just stuck them in Workplace Bullying and they can deal with it.” I think I’m the only one who found humor in that whole explanation.

And I’ve found someone who loves puns as much as I do, MF. Here are some pun-filled text-exchanges:

MF: I like wildebeests.

Me: I gnu you would.

MF: Okapi dokie! Can’t beat me when it comes to African ungulate puns.

Me: We’ll tsetse about that.

MF: That’s an insect. I’ll let you ruminant on it for a while so you can come up with a better one.

MF: If you don’t come up with a better one, you owe me a (water)buck.

Me: I’m rhinoceri about that. All this yakking has gotten me impala. I gazelle! The saiga continues.

Me: I’ll just put on my rheboks and make like an antelope. HAART(beast)!

Me: Can I get a hip(po) hip(po) hooray for that?

MF: Yaks are Asian. You can’t buffalo me with your extra-continental antics.

Me: Sorry that was takin me so long. I’m laughing so hard I’m crying.

MF: (Sent at the same time as my next one–see below) I don’t mean to be a dik dik about it, but you just aren’t in my league when it comes to African animal puns.

Me: Don’t be a dik dik.******


MF: Do you realize that “feet” are a constant theme in your writing?

MF: Plus, you worked at a shoe store…You know, it’s okay if you have a foot fetish. I’m not here to judge.

Me: No, I didn’t notice. Weird. Well, it’s like they always say: Feet are the window to the sole.

MF: That’s a toeriffic pun.

MF: I’m glad feet aren’t your arch enemy.

Me: I’m glad you’re so supportive. You’re like the Dr. Scholls of pun-ions.

MF: Aww, don’t be so corny.

Me: Don’t be a heel; you love corny.

Me: Nailed it.

MF: This whole conversation is getting very meta-tarsus.

Me: I don’t know about you, but I’m having a ball.

MF: I can’t think of any more foot references. I’m in sort of a bind.

Me: Don’t worry, you just have to step up your game a bit. Kick it up a notch.

MF: Okay, I’ll try to pull myself out of this tench.

MF: Trench.

Me: It’s punnier when you put your foot in your mouth with typos.

Me: Pull yourself up…by your bootstraps?

MF: Now, I’m feeling loose.

Me: …and fancy-free?

MF: I wonder if we can keep this up until we’re six feet under.

Me: Probably not; I’ve just about run out.

MF: Maybe we should stubstitute a different body part.

Me: Like hands? They’re a shoe-in.

MF: I was kidding; I’m not ready to knuckle under quite yet.

Me: You toedally had me fooled. I’m kicking myself. Gullibility is my Achilles heel.

MF: You stomped me.

Me: I feel like I had a leg up on you. Foot fetish (feetish?) and all.


MF is a photographer, among other things. You should check out his photography website.

I hope your day is full of puns and vigor!*******


*As far as I can tell, it is not broasted. But, it is delicious, and that’s all that matters.

**This is basically a giant pile of nachos, except the cheese isn’t melted, just piled on the top like a–you guessed it–haystack.

***Sasket? Sapket? Packset? Chicken in a Biscuit?****

****This is a real brand of crackers. It doesn’t contain real chicken, but it does contain soy protein. So. Yeah.

*****Blue? Orange? Purple? The sad thing is, I’ll never know because they will never make a salt packet for a salt-free/low sodium diet. Blergh.

******The following are all African ungulates (hoofed animals): wildebeest, gnu, okapi, waterbuck, ruminant (classification), rhinoceros, impala, gazelle, saiga, rhebok, antelope, haartbeast, hippopotamus, takin, dik dik. Yaks are Asian. African buffalos are (obviously) African; water buffalos are Asian. There are so many more. Can you think of any?

*******Instead of piss and vinegar. Gross.


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About Sarah in Small Doses

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2 responses to “August: Ramsey County”

  1. Bill says :

    I’ve seen broasted chicken advertised in various places but never “gnu” what it was. I’d assumed it was a combination between braising and roasting, but apparently broasting employs a pressure fryer, which sounds like an extremely dangerous cooking method in a hospital setting (or anywhere else).

    As for the ungulates, I think I can drum up at least one more….the Bongo.

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