When I go home to visit my parents, I usually DVR Maury and watch hours at a time while folding towels and catching up on letter-writing. There is something about the mindless Gladiatorial destruction of a quick succession of paternity tests and lie detector results that makes me feel better about my own life. Well, at least I'm not pregnant. At least my man isn't cheating with my mom. At least I'm not screaming “SIGN OVER YOUR RIGHTS!” with spittle flying into the camera lens, doing a booty dance to prove I am a thousand percent sure a man named Treasure is my baby's father.
But, I also do feel a little secretly pathetic, that maybe I should be thinking about doing something to better myself, or that I shouldn't be happy living in a warehouse where there is a new drawing of a dick in the hall every morning to greet me on my way to work.
The commercials they play during Maury seem to only reinforce the idea that maybe I should be doing something else- applying for medicaid to buy me a power-scooter, suing someone over a slip-and-fall, eating White Castle, or wiping down my entire house with Clorox wipes. So, the other day, in a particularly vulnerable moment, I called Apex technical school to find out about their Auto Mechanic program. If I were a mechanic, I could live out all of my majorly bad-ass dude fantasies. Flat tire? No problem, little lady. Oh, that sound? That's your alternator. Yep. She's gonna go soon. Better get that checked out.
So, that was Tuesday night. Wednesday at 8 AM, I got a call from a mystery number. They left no voicemail, but then later called me at 10 PM. “Fuck! What gives? Who the fuck is this psycho calling me and not leaving messages?” I redialed, and, sure enough, it was Apex Technical School. Apparently, they don't ever sleep, because they have called me fifteen times this week, usually before 8 AM and after 10 at night. When I answer, they hang up. They never leave messages. They just want to know that I am here, and that I'm not with any other vocational schools. I have a feeling that if I emailed DeVry about their program for Auto Body Repair, Apex Technical School will show up at my house.
“If I can't have you, no one can.” Their last words before throwing coolant in my face and eyes and blinding me.
Yesterday morning, they woke me up at 7:45, which is something only acceptable for a) my boss to do if I am late for work, or b) my mom to do if my stepdad is eaten by a bear. I answered, and they hung up again. Just checking to make sure that I'm here, that I'm not laying next to the University of Phoenix. That was enough. It was time to stop being victimized and take back my life.
I called up and left a message.
“Hi. My name is Cassie J. Sneider. The other day, I called about seeing how mush financial aid I could get for your program in Auto Mechanics. I am now calling to say I am not interested, Apex Technical School. Do you hear me? You've called me twice a day since I showed interest in you, which is a major turn off. Stop waking me up and stop calling me at night when I'm out with my friends. I'm onto you, Apex Technical School. Don't even think about driving past my house, because I'll get a restraining order. I don't want to see you again. Have a nice life.”
Then I went back to bed, a million trillion percent sure I don't need a degree to fix anything.