Keeping your cool

Hothead: (noun) a person who is impetuous or who easily becomes heated and angry. Yesterday the kids and I went for a walk to the park and in an effort for health and well-being, I decided we would take the long route. As soon as we hit the fork in the path and I turned right instead of our usual left, they both stopped and stood there dumbfounded. “Um, you’re going the wrong way Mom!” Sophie said with blatant unease.

Hothead: (noun) a person who is impetuous or who easily becomes heated and angry.

Yesterday the kids and I went for a walk to the park and in an effort for health and well-being, I decided we would take the long route.

As soon as we hit the fork in the path and I turned right instead of our usual left, they both stopped and stood there dumbfounded. “Um, you’re going the wrong way Mom!” Sophie said with blatant unease.

I explained that I wanted to take the long way so we could get some exercise.

What followed could have been a scene straight from the apocalypse itself.

There were devastating screams and horrendous moaning. There was “But why?!” and “No no no!” and even, “This can’t be happening!”

It was a sad ordeal, to say the least. And it made me wonder where they both get this hotheadedness from.

Surely it couldn’t be me. Could it?

A few months ago, we decided to switch Internet/cable providers. There were some great deals going on with our current provider’s rival so we took the opportunity and jumped ship. Everything was going great. The kids were happy with the new channels they got and I was pleased to have my beloved HBO back. Jamie was the only one who was perturbed because his faithful hardwired Internet connection had to be switched over to Wi-Fi, which he claimed made the Internet slower. I told him to stop being such a geezer and get with the times.

A few days later ,I received a letter from our previous provider stating that we still had rental equipment of theirs, including but not limited to their Internet modem. It took me the better half of an afternoon to locate all of the random pieces that were listed as not ours. It was the modem that I found last.

Admittedly, I am rather dim-witted when it comes to electronics of any kind. That’s why we keep Jamie’s brother Dan around — he’s our go-to guy when it comes to technology in general (and we consider the four-slot toaster tech savvy).

Unfortunately, at the time Dan was nowhere to be found. So there I was idiotically gawking at the hookups for the Wi-Fi and modem. I located the old modem but it hadn’t been sloppily tossed in an old box like the other items I had retrieved. It was sitting beside an unidentified device that had the new service provider’s name on it. The old modem’s lights were still flashing and it looked completely operational.

I tell you what — any rational person probably would have investigated this a little more. But not I, friends, not I. I got the new service providers on the blower and before they could ask me for my account number, I set forth on my tirade.

“Did you people use my old provider’s Internet modem to hook up your service? This is blasphemy! That is rented equipment and I need to return it! What do you expect me to do after I give it back? How will I get online? How will I access the Internet without a modem?”

These were the actual words coming out of my mouth.

“You had better get over here and hook it up properly because this is entirely on you!”

I had only paused to catch my breath when the unfortunate customer service person who had picked up my call began trying to de-escalate the situation.

“Ma’am, I’m sorry you are having issues with this, but I assure you that it would be quite impossible for us to use your old service provider’s modem for our own use.”

“Well it’s hooked up, the lights are flashing! What do you say about that?”

I went on for quite some time repeating much of the same argument because I couldn’t find any other points to quarrel with in my state of blind rage.

“Ma’am, why don’t you just try to unplug the old modem and see if your service is still working?”

I did just that, thinking all the while that this was such a waste of my time.

I looked at the Google bar on my computer. I looked at the unplugged modem. It finally occurred to me that perhaps the old modem had only been plugged into the wall.

Silence and mortification followed as I quickly said, “Thank you, that’ll be all” and hung the phone up.

I looked over to Jamie, who was now hysterically laughing at my obvious faux pas.

“Who’s the geezer now?” he said between snorts.

Moral of this story: teach the kids that hotheadedness never pays.

Lindsay Brown is a Sylvan Lake mother of two and freelance columnist.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

File photo
The Red Deer Rebels will have three new assistant coaches when the WHL regular season starts on Friday. Brad Flynn (left), will be on the bench alongside fellow assistant Ryan Colville (right) head coach Brent Sutter (middle). (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)
Sutter steps down as Red Deer Rebels head coach

Red Deer Rebels Owner, GM and head coach Brent Sutter has stepped… Continue reading

Premier Jason Kenney announced $200 million more money that will benefit seniors living in continuing care on Wednesday. (photography by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Alberta’s in-school rapid screening test program expanding

Alberta’s in-school rapid screening test program will expand to as many as… Continue reading

Parents and students learned Tuesday what the coming school year will look like. It's pretty much back to business as usual, said Education Minister Adriana LaGrange. School precautions include frequent cleaning, keeping students in the same groups where possible, planning the school day to allow for physical distancing and staying home when sick. (photography by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Alberta’s largest school board says no to United Conservative draft school curriculum

CALGARY — Alberta’s largest school board says it will not use the… Continue reading

Cowboy Kicks, originally scheduled for May 5, will now take place Sept. 18. (Contributed photo)
Westerner Park’s Cowboy Kicks fundraiser moved to Sept. 18

A major fundraiser for Westerner Park and the Canadian Pro Rodeo Sport… Continue reading

Red Deer-South MLA Jason Stephan is among those who have signed an open letter criticizing the government’s return to stricter health measures. (Advocate file photo).
Updated: Kenney tells UCP caucus COVID-19 dissent OK, breaking health rules means expulsion

15 MLAs released letter on Wednesday critical of new health restrictions

Team Canada skip Brendan Bottcher makes a shot against Italy at the Men's World Curling Championships in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, April 6, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Men’s world curling championship in Calgary in COVID limbo

CALGARY — The men’s world curling championship in Calgary remained suspended Saturday… Continue reading

Pipes intended for construction of the Keystone XL pipeline are shown in Gascoyne, N.D. on Wednesday April 22, 2015. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Alex Panetta
Non-profit Quebec law centre to aid environmental group targeted by Alberta oil firm

QUEBEC — The Quebec Environmental Law Centre is coming to the aid… Continue reading

Conservative leader Erin O'Toole holds a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, April 6, 2020. Top Tory leaders of past and present will speak with supporters today about what a conservative economic recovery from COVID-19 could look like. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Conservatives cite empathy, relationships as ways to help expand their movement

OTTAWA — Conservatives should show empathy with Black residents who say they’ve… Continue reading

NDP Leader John Horgan celebrates his election win in the British Columbia provincial election in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. New Democrats are reconvening for the second day of a three-day policy convention as they look to push past the glitches of the virtual event's opening sessions and rally around keynote speaker John Horgan. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
New Democrats reconvene as hiccups, frustrations plague national policy convention

OTTAWA — New Democrats reconvened Saturday for the second day of a… Continue reading

Owner of 4 Point Taekwondo Kevin Mejia holds a board as organizer and martial artist Kevin Olsen breaks it in Edmonton on Friday, April 9, 2021. One hundred martial artists from around the world, will be breaking a board for an event called "Break for a Breakthrough." The idea is for martial artists to unite and re-engage with the arts because they may have drifted away or lost enthusiasm as a result of the pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Break for a Breakthrough: Canadian hosts international martial arts demonstration

EDMONTON — Whether he’s breaking a wooden board, a clay tile, cement… Continue reading

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip, Duke of Ediburgh, left, look on as Manitoba Beaver peaks out of his box at a July 14, 1970 ceremony in which Hudson's Bay Company observed an old tradition. The death of Prince Philip has reminded a small French village in Manitoban about how a royal visit half a century ago made the community the centre of frog racing in Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS
Prince Philip’s frog-jumping legacy in a Manitoba French community

WINNIPEG — The death of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, has reminded… Continue reading

The Yukon provincial flag flies on a flag pole in Ottawa, Monday July 6, 2020. Yukon residents will head to the polls on Monday for Canada's fourth election held during the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Yukon residents set to vote in fourth election held in Canada during pandemic

WHITEHORSE — Yukon residents will head to the polls on Monday for… Continue reading

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference in Ottawa Tuesday, March 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Liberals set to debate universal basic income, pharmacare, OAS hike

OTTAWA — Grassroots Liberals have taken up Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s call… Continue reading

Most Read