I’m a recovering pack rat, but sometimes I regress. Tonight I transcribed 14 saved voice mail messages dating back to 2007. It was as much a practical exercise as it was a display of my neurotic compulsion to document everything. I have no space left for voice mails and text messages. My mailbox is always full. I was forced to make room.
But before I purged these 14 messages from my voice mail memory, I decided to post them here. I’ve held onto them for very specific reasons, most of which will be completely meaningless to you:
1. “Hey cutie pie, baby pie, sweetums, lovey cakes. I hope this means you’re buying oak tag or poster board. It is 6:30 and I just walked into my house. I’ll be on the road about a quarter-to-seven, so call me back if you like, otherwise I’ll see you when I see you.” ♥
– From Joe when we first started dating. The poster board he’s referring to was used to make two giant Chinese takeout containers for a costume party at a bar in downtown Sarasota.
2. “Hey Heidi. I just got my grades back from my first essay and I got an 85, so I didn’t do as bad as I thought I would. The teacher said I ended the story too abruptly and I had a semi-colon in a place where I should have had a colon, but everything else was great, so thank you very much. I miss the heck outta ya.” ♥
– From my friend Chris, who I worked with at a marble yard during my two-year hiatus from journalism. Not long after I left the marble biz, Chris decided to go to college to pursue an engineering degree. He left me this message after I helped him with an English essay.
3. “Hey, did you hear? My daughter got engaged last night? Gimme a call. Bye.” ♥
– From my mom, the morning after Joe proposed.
4. “Well, Adam and I just got home from Fort Lauderdale and we checked our mail and I got the prettiest little card asking me to be your bridesmaid and I would love to. I would be honored. Happy New Year and I’ll talk to you soon.” ♥
– From Joe’s sister Rosey.
5. “Hey Heid. It’s Ro. It’s Saturday at 4:30 and I just got your Save-The-Date and for some reason every time I get something for your or Sue’s wedding on paper –– something that makes it real –– I start to cry. As I’m saying this now my voice is cracking. I’m going to be home all night, so just call me when you get this. ♥
– From my Ro, who always leaves messages in such a comforting conversational tone. I’m incapable of doing this as I’m always aware of the fact that I’m talking to a machine.
6. “Hey beautiful. It’s me. It’s 3:23 and I’m on my way to Phil’s. I’m going to hang out there until 5:30 and then we’ll go out to dinner, or go to a movie, or for a beer, or maybe play Rummy. I think you deserve a rematch. I hope you’re OK. You seemed so sad for no real reason. I love you and I’ll see you in a little bit.” ♥
– From Joe. I saved this message because I was sad for no real reason and every time I get this way, I replay this message and it helps bring me back to earth.
7. “Yes, Heidi. You have to call me. It’s Holly. I’m gonna have long hair for your wedding. I’m getting hair extensions put in so I’m gonna look like Shakira. Anyway, give me a call back so I can tell you about Brian dating our mother.” ♥
– From my sister Heelya, the (unintentionally) funniest person I know.
8. “Hey. Uh hey. Well, call me. I love you. If I don’t hear from you by 9, I’m gonna order you a Florida Gold from Harvey’s. Otherwise, I’m gonna die. Well that’s not true. I’m actually eating the chicken from Wednesday night. It’s OK. I’m not saying — well, you know … I love you.” ♥
– It was late. I was covering an event in Sarasota and Joe was starving. A Florida Gold is a grilled avocado, tomato, cheese and sprout sammie from Harvey’s, the bar behind our house. It wasn’t until after we purchased our home that we realized Harvey’s 4th Street Grill is a local institution around these parts and that it’s literally a three-minute walk from our back porch. We’re convinced living behind this bar/restaurant increases our property value.
9. “Here comes the bride. All dressed in white. I don’t know the rest of the song. Anyway, just calling. It’s Heelya. One more week and you get married. I’m just calling to let you know that.” ♥
– Thank god Heelya called to remind me.
10. “Hi Heidi. It’s Meg. I realize this is the week before your wedding, so you’re probably really busy and stressed out, or out playing. Who knows? So it’s probably not the greatest time to catch up, but I can’t wait to talk to you –– maybe it’s after the wedding to hear about the honeymoon. I am wondering if you’re going on your honeymoon directly after your wedding? Just curious. Maybe it’s on your blog and I should check it. I’m so sorry I haven’t been able to come to anything –– especially the wedding. I would have loved LOVED to come. I just hope it all goes perfectly and is gorgeous. I can’t wait to see photos and we should catch up soon.” ♥
– From my friend Meg in Kansas City. Here’s why I saved this message: Joe and I were on our way up to New York for our wedding when I listened to it. We were driving through the mountains in West Virginia, and while I was bummed that Meg and Cory couldn’t make it, I was touched by Meg’s phone call and in general, deliriously happy.
11. “Hey Heidi. It’s Heelya calling. I’m calling to tell you, well I gotta get a root canal and a crown put on my tooth. It’s gonna cost me $800 with insurance. The insurance is covering already half of that. If I didn’t have insurance, it would have cost $2,000, which is crazy. So anyways, I’m calling to see if the name Olivia is what you wanted to name one of your kids. Cuz if it is, then I guess we can’t name our Bullmastiff that, cuz we’re looking at two girls tomorrow and the chances of us getting one is likely, so we have to think of a girl’s name and we like the name Olivia. You know –– Owen and Olivia. We have to think of another “O” name and we want to get a girl so we need to think of an “O” girl name, and I thought maybe Olivia was what you wanted to name your kid. If that’s the case, we won’t name our dog that.” ♥
– I’ve listened to this message at least 10 times. I don’t know which is better: that she starts with the root canal or that she thinks she’s ripping off my unborn daughter’s nonexistent name.
12. “Hello Heidi. I don’t know. Are you sleeping? Anyway, just calling to tell you we’ve got Olive Orchid in the backseat, in a cage that is much too small for her. We’re gonna have to get her a new one. She’s the same coloring as Owen. Very light fur and dark face. OK, gimme a call back when you get a chance and I’ll talk to you about her then.” ♥
– Heelya’s Bullmastiff is 75 lbs. and growing. Her pug Owen is half the size of Cubbie.
13. “You are disgusting. I found your dirty Q-Tip and booger rag in my new garbage can. Gross. Bye.” ♥
– From PK, who refused to put a garbage can in her bathroom because she think trash cans in bathrooms are disgusting. After months of persuading and two trips to IKEA, I convinced her to buy one. As soon as she set it in her bathroom, I blew my nose five times and covered a Q-Tip in liquid foundation (to give the appearance of orange wax) and then promptly bid her farewell for the evening and waited for this call.
14. “Hello Heidi. This is Nanie. So I want to thank you so very much for the birthday package. I was so excited because at the time I had a sweet attack, and when I opened your package I immediately took one of the brownies and ate it. Oh, it was delicious. Thank you so much. It was the nicest gift I’ve ever received. I thank Joe too. Who did all the baking? Wonderful baking. I’ll come to your bakery shop again. Have a good day, honey. And thanks again.” ♥
– From my Nana, who will celebrate her 28th birthday Feb. 3.
PS. Happy 34th birthday to my Opa!