Monday, October 10, 2016

NEVER SAY.......

Rerun from 2010.  

Fishducky's funny post about Having a Bad Day reminded me of one of my worst days ever. Thus this rerun.

Never say------
The rest of that sentence is ...."this day just can't get any worse."

My last year reading meters in West Palm I finally got a route to read that I had been begging for. It was a bear of a route, covering many miles, lots of new unlogged meters and most of the dirt roads had no sign posts to let you know where you were. I must have been crazy to have lobbied so hard for such a route but it was also the route that Burt Reynolds lived in. Ah ha. Maybe I'd get to see him--- though pretty sure it would not be like this. 



 Knowing I had a solid 8 hour, non-stop, hustle day, I started early. That was fortunate for I was maybe an hour into the route when my little pick up started acting up. It was coughing, wheezing and stalling.   I was able to lurch into the town of Jupiter to a mechanic where I called my boss. He told me to get a rental and to continue.

The rental was a huge Buick 4 door passenger car and maneuvering the narrow, rutted dirt roads was a challenge. I squeezed down one driveway only to have an aggressive, large black dog challenge me at the gate. I honked and honked but no one came out.  While backing up the behemoth of a car, I went too far and backed my rear wheels into the deep drainage ditches that lined the roads on both sides. The car was resting on its frame.

I was getting pretty frustrated by now. We had no cell phones or radios. I had to get to a phone and the nearest one was that same house guarded by the disagreeable black dog. 

I saw a curtain move in the window and only out of frustration and not bravery I decided to try the house. To bluff the dog, I snarled horrible things at him under my breath. It was something about my tearing his legs off and making him eat them if he came near me.  Slowly I pushed open the gate. He must have sensed my fragile mood for he circled, slobbered and growled but did not get close.

A woman with serious bed hair barely cracked the door and I asked to use her phone. Grudgingly, she let me in. My boss was not particularly pleased to hear from me twice in a little over an hour. He arranged for a tow truck to pull me out but said that the driver was unfamiliar with the area and I had to meet him on the main road to show him where I was stuck. The main road was almost three miles from where I was.

Time was a factor so I started to jog down the dusty roads. As I was jogging along I was feeling pretty darn sorry for myself. Then it started to seriously rain and I muttered those fateful words, "This day just can't get any worse."

Au contraire my dears, it could and did. Running down a long drive towards me came an angry Doberman intent on making me a snack.

I looked at him as he charged towards me and I screamed into the rain, "DAMN IT, enough is enough."

Well, my luck got a bit better for it appears the dog's name was Dammit or something similar sounding for he stopped, ears came unglued from his head and his stub of a tail wagged. I knelt in the wet earth and grabbed his head as he came wagging up to me. Was I ever glad to see a friendly face.

Dammit jogged with me to the main road and I was able to talk the tow truck driver into giving Dammit a ride back to where I had found him. The driver was able to pull my rental out of the ditch and I was back in business, hours behind schedule.

One of the last meters of that long day was on Burt Reynold's ranch. No longer did I want to see him, I just wanted to go home. 

Burt was in the process having a large live-in tree house built at the back of his ranch.  As I was making the long walk to the construction meter, I heard several wolf whistles and a"hey babe" or two.  God bless them, construction crews whistle at anything vaguely female, even angry, grubby, worn out meter readers. I stomped to the meter head down with teeth grinding. My mood was not just dark by then, it was black.

I finished that route as the sun was setting and I decided surely nothing else could screw up my world. However when I returned to the office to drop off my route book, one of the new business engineers who had also been working late, came through the meter room on his way to the parking lot.

"Patti, did you read Burt Reynold's tree house today?" Jim asked.

When I verified that I had, he broke my heart by saying that he had talked to Burt a little while ago about needing a permanent meter for the tree house. Burt had commented that our company had cute meter readers but they sure were "stuck up".  He had been among the whistlers and I had ignored him. Seems this was the second time Burt had been ignored by a female meter reader and he thought it was hilarious. At that moment I was too crushed to see the humor. That day had finally gone all the way to "worse."

Now days, I stay away from saying "This day just can't get any worse" for that just seems to tempt the fates to see just what else they can come up with to torment you. I have found that rolling with the punches spoils all the fun of the "bad day grinches." Now I just say "Gimme your best shot" and grin. Try it--- it works--more often than not.


28 comments :

  1. Oh Patti, Patti, Patti that is one whale of a tale. I like Burt but not THAT MUCH! Laugh, I thought I'd die...

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    Replies
    1. Annie,
      Thank you but I am sorry I put you close to the edge:)) If I had seen him it would have been worth it.

      Delete
  2. This is hilarious!!! What a great way to start a Monday morning. Being a relatively new reader, I had no idea about your brush with fame! Any other famous people in your past life?

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    1. Carole,
      So glad you thought so. I did have a few brushes with the famous but only one was really wonderful and that was with Perry Como. He was one wonderful man.

      Delete
  3. Oh Patti, wow!Bad day unlucky for sure. But Burt Reynolds whistled at you....WOWZER!! I hope you got to see him again on your route!

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    1. Terri,
      Sadly, I never ran into him. We only got to keep the routes for 3 months and the following two months, nary a glimpse of him. Sigh.

      Delete
  4. What a wonderful story, although it was not a good experience. At least you KNOW Burt wolf whistled at you!

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    1. Gail,
      Fortunately most bad experiences, given a little time go from bad to funny.

      Delete
  5. Why is it someone elses misery can be sooo funny? At lest you survived and know that you were whistle bait for a sexist Burt Reynolds.

    Very funny post.

    If I ever get another dog I'm going to name it Dammit!

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    1. joeh,
      Thank you. Once I got some rest, I saw the humor in that day. It was a comedy of errors.
      Don't ya love the name Dammit?

      Delete
  6. Wow ... that's some memory! That may be the best of the "Meter Maid" stories but I'll bet there were others too.

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    1. Ginnie,
      It sure wan't a glamour job but it really provided some interesting material. I enjoyed the ride.

      Delete
  7. Poor Patti, missing Burt like that!!

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  8. Oh, Patti...you missed seeing Burt! You know that not many can say that they were whistled at by him. :) Loved this story!

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    1. Cheryl,
      Thanks, so glad you enjoyed. Lucky for me he mentioned it to Jim or I would have never known. Of course that could have been a good thing.

      Delete
  9. I loved this story! You certainly have been living an interesting life, and I'm enjoying these visits to past gems I missed. I will remember your warning not to tempt fate. :-)

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    1. Djan,
      Thank you. Sometimes when I have nothing, I go to the filing cabinet.
      Fate is a rascal about piling on if she thinks it is working:)

      Delete
  10. Oh my, what a day! I'm glad you survived it (and Dammit too).

    I have learned never to say "I'm bored" because that is when all hell breaks loose in my life. I don't recall saying it recently but I must have...or perhaps I simply tempted fate in some other fashion.

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    1. Eileen,
      Oh yes, saying "I am bored" is so tempting for fate. Sometimes I think Fate gets bored also and just uses us for amusement.

      Delete
  11. I remember reading this one before...Guess I've been reading your blog posts for many years --as you have mine.... I remember the dog named DAMNIT---and I remember you ignoring Burt Reynolds.....

    Love it....
    Hugs,
    Betsy

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    Replies
    1. Betsy,
      Such a good memory you have. Yep, we have been chatting over the blogger fence for a long time. So glad we found eachother.

      Delete
  12. A good one Patti! Dammit was a nice twist. (You were probably muttering that quite a bit when you realized what you'd missed.)

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    1. Barb,
      Dammit was the highlight of my day. I was so pleased that the tow truck driver didn't mind giving a wet dog a ride.

      Delete
  13. This story is worthy of an entry to Reader's Digest - if it still existed! Definitely tops my friend's about the time she saw Steve Martin perform long ago. He came up to her after the show and asked if she wanted to have dinner with him. But she was a good girl and said she had to leave with the guy who brought her.
    Missed opportunities!

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    1. Marty,
      Thank you. Too bad RD is pretty much gone. I enjoyed that mag.
      I hope your friend's date appreciated what she did. I always thought Steve Martin was good looking.

      Delete
  14. Awww... Patti, don't suspend comments. We still like leaving you a note even if you're not there for a while.

    I'm going on another blog hiatus too. Too much going on over here and I think I have a case of writer's block. I don't know why.

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