Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Silver Shoes, Cliff Clavin, And A Guinness World Record

I've been on a shopping tear for about two weeks now. I was bored with what I have and I'm tired of looking at the same clothes; I just needed new stuff. I also needed to get the rat's nest on the top of my head taken care of and was hoping to get that done before the end of the week.

I have already purchased two new pairs of jeans, four tank tops, four great blouses, two bras, a new purse, and yesterday both Eddie and I got haircuts. So that's done. But I still needed to get shoes, which is as much if not more of a nightmare than bra shopping, so when today started out as an especially productive day, I was hoping that tone would continue into the shopping portion of the afternoon.

Eddie changed the oil in the generator this morning, worked on the trailer a little bit and then replaced the driver side headlight that had been flickering the past few days. Once that was done, we headed off to the nearest mall, which happened to be one we had been to before. Let me refresh your memory - it's the place where some lady
thought Ed and I were terrorists. Yes, seriously.

Anyway, we specifically went there so I could hit Nordstrom's for a pair of desperately needed flats. Nordstrom's is just one of a very small number of stores that carry shoes for my gigantic, Amazonian feet (sometimes an 11, usually a 12!). And they usually have a large variety of styles. You can imagine how thrilled I was when the salesgirl brought out boxes of shoes that fit my boats! I got
this suede one in a beautiful taupe color and this fabulous metallic one in pewter. I'll eventually order a few more pairs online, but this should hold me for the next few months. We're going into summer and my summer footwear consists primarily of flip-flops, which I bought six new pairs of last week, so I'm good.

My super score of the day though, came in the form of a pencil. The highly prized
shu uemura Hard Formula (H9) eyebrow pencil! I have been trying to buy this for months but you can't just get it anywhere; regular department stores like Macy's and Dillard's don't carry the shu uemura line and Nordstrom's or Neiman Marcus aren't on every street corner. I could've ordered it online but that would mean I'd have to go home to get it and I just knew I couldn't wait that long. Perfect brows, here I come!

Once those two critical items (shoes and eyebrow pencil) were purchased and tucked safely in my Nordstrom's shopping bag, Eddie and I hit Maggiano's for dinner. It's the only place on the road where I know I can get gnocchi, and although they're not my grandmother's gnocchi, they usually satisfy my longing. But, after our stuffed mushroom appetizer and salad, I found that I wasn't all that hungry and I knew there was no way I was going to finish the giant portion, so I had them pack it up to take home. Yay! lunch for tomorrow.

And speaking of tomorrow...
Tomorrow we go to the MATS!! MATS, The Mid-America Trucking Show, is held in Louisville, Kentucky every year at this time. It's the largest trucking show in the world. Thousands of exhibitors, thousands of attendees and thousands of square feet to cover; almost too much to see in the three days it runs. In addition to all the exhibitors, every year one of the large companies sponsors a free concert for the attendees, and even the years when I wasn't too familiar with the peformers, the show was still great! And two years ago, I got to see my favorite group, Sugarland! This year it's going to be John Anderson and The Grascals. I'm sure it'll be a good time.

I'm always excited to go and this year is a little more important to me because an organization I belong to, Women In Trucking, is going to do a "Salute To Women Behind The Wheel" by taking a group photo of women drivers in an attempt to set a world record for the Largest Gathering of Women Truck Drivers. I'm going to be part of that photo!

The other thing I'm excited about is meeting John Ratzenberger (Cliff Clavin from Cheers), the host of the TV show Made In America, which ran from 2004 to 2008. During that time, he traveled the United States visiting factories and workshops, meeting the people who make real things and take pride in what they do. He's now working to bring attention to the jobs in our country that are disappearing every day as people start to retire, and points out that there aren't people being trained to step into the vacancies left by those workers. Jobs like electricians, carpenters, welders, machinists and yes, truck drivers. A survey in 2009 done by Manpower, Inc. said those first three jobs are the hardest jobs to fill in America. No one really learns a trade anymore and he believes the portrayal of blue-collar professions in TV and movies has played a big part in demeaning anyone who "works for a living." I think too many kids out there think they actually have a chance at making millions playing pro ball or worse, becoming a contestant on a reality show!

Other than those two highlights, Ed and I love to walk the show to check out any new items the industry might be introducing, get ideas for things we want to buy for the truck (every year, Ed buys something), meet some of the other drivers who are leased to our company (and get free lunch!), renew our OOIDA memberships (it's always cheaper at the show), check out the truck "beauty show" and just enjoy the people watching. And let me tell you, the people watching is soooooo worth it. And I will tell you right now - there won't be another soul in the 300,000 square feet of that convention center who'll be wearing silver shoes, but I will bet my pay for the month that I won't be able to count high enough to keep track of all the people I'll see wearing wolf and wildlife t-shirts!

As I people watch and gadget shop, I also pick up free stuff for my nephews. There are tons of vendors who give away free stuff that kids love; baseball caps, stickers, toy trucks, keychains and the ever present yardstick. Yep - every year you will see hundreds of attendees walking around with a wooden yardstick displaying some vendor's name on the face of it. I don't know what these people do with that yardstick, but I do know they're very popular. And year after year, I don't think I've ever come across the booth that hands them out. WTF?

Sooo...I will report back with any interesting tidbits and hopefully won't post pictures mocking anyone who reads my blog. Those of you sporting mullets - you have been warned!

See y'all tomorrow!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
A Bevy Of Pavo Cristatus
How Much Happy Can A Dollar Buy?
The Heat Is On
The New York Catch And Release Program


Gil said...

My favorite keeper was a meter stick someone was giving out to show his business went a bit extra! Its primary use is to measure snow depths.

beautyfreekz said...

they are pulling shu out of all US department stores. they only place to get the makeup line will be online.

extenze said...

what a happy post! well, simply because you just can never have too many shoes LOL

extenze said...

man buying makeup online is such a hassle!