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Monday, September 20, 2010  

Road Trip Day 11 Part 2

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

Day 8

Day 9

Day 10

Day 11 Part 1

M. Edium is not great at naming things, but that doesn't stop him from doing it. The names he gives things generally are -- while quite descriptive -- hopelessly prosaic. The more valuable the item, the less creative its name. His favorite stuffed animal for the past two years has been a multicolored stuffed caterpillar named Cattie, which he's had his entire life. Almost as important as Cattie is a tie-dye-colored iguana whose name is Unusual Lizard ("Unusual" for short). M. Edium also has two identical semi-humanoid blue plush rectangles with legs and eyes who are known, respectively, as Blue Guy and Other Blue Guy. And his precious, treasured blanket, the one without which he not only can't go to sleep at night, he can't get up in the morning, has been blessed with the emotionally charged moniker of "Comfortable Blanket."

The fact that Comfortable Blanket doesn't have a very imaginative name, however, does not alleviate M. Edium's heartbreak or anger at the fact that we inadvertently abandoned it in a different state this morning.

As I mentioned previously, I had called the hotel to arrange for them to overnight the blanket (and the stuffed animals that had apparently been found with it, whoever they were) to our house that day. Two hours later, I called them back. That's when I found out about the problems.

First of all, it seems that when July Fourth falls on a Sunday and thus Monday, July 5 becomes a de facto holiday, things don't work as efficiently as they might. Things like FedEx pickups. Things like where hotels keep the forms to ship overnight packages. Things like the head of housekeeping, who has the day off. Things like the head of housekeeping's office, in which the items have been locked since the last conversation and which cannot be gotten into until the following morning, meaning that even if I wanted to turn around and drive four hours back and then the same distance plus two hours back to Starved Rock -- which, let's face it, at this point I'm starting to -- it wouldn't do any good.

All we can do is go on to Starved Rock, plying M. Edium with apologies and a promise that he can have whatever blanket he wants off our bed tonight. Not having stopped for lunch, the name of the place seems pretty apt by the time we drop off some stuff in our cabin (two beds, full bath, no kitchen or fridge) and make our way to the dining room.

This was the place Trash had been most looking forward to staying. It's the most expensive stop on our trip, and when I saw the photos on the website, I was like, "This is much nicer than we deserve." This feeling is alleviated during our meal when every road-worn vagrant in the northern half of Illinois brushes past our table in the course of a half hour.

After our late lunch, we decided to explore the rest of the expansive lodge. Just our luck: in the great hall, the Humane Society just happened to be having a pet adoption drive, complete with adorable, fuzzy, heartbreaking kitties just begging to be brought home and have their pictures posted on Cute Overload. M. Edium saw a way to fill the gaping hole in his heart left by Comfortable Blanket, and Trash, who has not been allowed in pet stores for almost two decades, is a negative amount of help. It is at about this time that she and I realize what we are going to have to do. And no, it does not involve jamming a kitty cage into the already overstuffed backseat of an extended-cab pickup for a long drive home tomorrow, but it's close.

Back in the cabin, M. Edium wants his friends. The one he wants most of all is Cattie, so the two of them can take comfort in each other in the face of Comfortable Blanket's absence. But remember how the hotel clerk said the housekeepers had found not only a blanket but some stuffed animals?


Right about then is when I become this hotel staff's stalker.

posted by M. Giant 7:19 PM 3 comments


There is no cute acronym already popular in the internet vernacular for my reaction while I read this post, but I shall use one nonetheless:


That'd be Cringing Out Loud, by the by, complete with Lucille Ball-when-she's-just-been-caught-sneaking-into-the-club-by-Ricky sound effects.

I'm really, really hoping that the next installment includes, if not the rapid and safe return of Comfortable Blanket, Cattie et al, then at least a cute-n-fuzzy kitten.

By the by, our kid has many similarly named and equally beloved Guys - Roary the tiger, Stripey the snake, Pinks the pink teddy bear, Blue-Blue the blue elephant and let's not leave out Spider the spider and T Rex the T rex. She also has several Extreme Cold genre animals - a penguin, seal and three polar bears - that all have names built around the word "Snow" - Snowy, Snowball, Snowflake - except for one (the penguin, I believe) which is inexplicably named Holly.

By Blogger Heather, at September 21, 2010 at 5:23 AM  

By the by, "by the by" seems to be my go-to phrase of the moment. Yeesh.

My WV word is "Qualmsms" though, which is pretty cool. That'd also rack up the points in Scrabble...

By Blogger Heather, at September 21, 2010 at 5:24 AM  

When I was M.Edium's age, I left my beloved Raggedy Ann in a hotel in Baton Rouge--which we didn't realize until we were back home in Dallas.

The hotel sent it back by US mail (argh) so I ran out to the mailbox every day for over a week to keep checking if Raggedy Ann was there. The plus was that I got a mini-Ann doll in the meantime so I'd be able to sleep.

By Anonymous Julie, at September 22, 2010 at 4:11 PM  

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