Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Poem and Drum Roll for the Great Answer

No longer will you see

A need to solve this mystery

For when you scroll way down

And take a look around

A shock or two in view

Will surely await you

How could you ever guess

That marcy ended up in this mess?

But God was there to see her through

And used it as a blessing too!

When my late beloved husband Mario realized that his position was no longer needed in Phoenix, AZ. (after he honestly told them what all the doctor visits were about), he decided that looking for another job was not an option (the Parkinson's was becoming more apparent), so, instead he started earnestly looking for a business that would provide for us in the present and hopefully, secure our future. He searched and searched and then researched various businesses and discussed them with me. Finally, he felt he had the answer, so we plunged our savings into it and went forward, knowing he would be at the helm of this venture while I continued with my part time job, still being his support. He is the one who took the three day preparatory classes and then immersed himself in the business. He did ask if I wanted to go to the classes, but since it was such a male dominated field I decided against it...that was one WRONG decision on my part!!!






areas of business


of which I knew anything about managing!!!!!!!!

We became the proud (confused on my part) owners (although it was really just a lease) of a:

are you ready for this??????......

are you sure?........

Union 76 gas station
(these gas prices are from 4 1/2 yrs ago when it skyrocketed in Phoenix)
Learning to order and manage gasoline is a real challenge!

With a convenience store that sold soft drinks galore, bottled water, candy, gum, cigarettes, ice cream, coffee, snack foods, first aid, know, all those necessary life sustaining items.

Here's part of the crew...Randy, my Service manager in the bay, me, Tina, my head cashier and our lead mechanic whose name eludes me at the moment but you don't know him so I can even make up a name, so let's call him Helmut...

This is a peek inside of the convenience store with Tina waiting on a customer and me peeking through the window from the bays...

Here is a look from the back of the station and into the repair bays where cars would drive up for servicing. Can you see that partial view of the storage shed to the far left? There was quite an adventure for me one night there:

All the way into the bay area you can see the mission statement that we created for our business:

We communicated with the mechanics through this window so that we could give and get keys to vehicles as well as the work orders that were printed up after work was done. I would work evenings and all day on Fridays (as well as being on call 24/7, as in when the alarm would go off):

We also filled propane tanks and vehicles that ran on propane. Here's a picture of Randy and me in front of the station where the repair bays are (I won't tell you who's on the right or'll just have to guess on this one!)

Here's Randy trying to figure what's cooking (or not cooking) under this hood. He too was a master mechanic and could help out when needed:

I didn't realize that within several months I would be waving good-bye TO the Station, instead of FROM the Station as it was steadily going towards bankruptcy:
How, might you well ask, did this end up being a blessing, after it sapped up all of our savings and then went belly up on us? The hidden blessing was that it kept/forced me to stay busy and connected to people after Mario died when all I really wanted to do was just crawl in a hole somewhere and hopefully just die too. God is always sending us so many "life rafts" even in our darkest moments, but we do have to reach out and grab them. Sometimes we even have to go on a hunting trip for them, so I found some counselors and awesome grief groups and I am still in touch with the one in Phoenix after more than six years!

Some of you got surprisingly close on this guessing game, so i am going to put everyone's name who guessed (every third guess will get your name in again) and have Kelly or Michael pick it out of a bowl (TinkaBelle's swimming pool is way too little and we don't have any of those stick thingies like Eileen, unless she lets me come over and borrow them??)
Thank you, all of you, for such a delightful time...your commenting back and forth was just the BEST and kept me laughing all the time.

Now let's bring on the sunshine along with the Son shine in our lives:

Oil Changing Instructions

1. Pull up to Jiffy Lube when the mileage reaches 3,000 since the last oil change.

2. Drink a cup of coffee.

3. 15 minutes later, write a check for $20.00 and leave with a properly maintained vehicle.


1. Go to Pep Boys and write a check for $50.00 for oil, filter, oil lift (AKA kitty litter), hand cleaner and a scented tree.

2. Discover that the used oil container is full. Instead of taking back to Pep Boys to recycle, dump in hole in back yard.

3. Open a beer and drink it.

4. Jack car up. Spend 30 minutes looking for jack stands.

5. Find jack stands under kid's pedal car.

6. In frustration, open another beer and drink it.

7. Place drain pan under engine.

8. Look for 9/16 box end wrench.

9. Give up and use crescent wrench.

10. Unscrew drain plug.

11. Drop drain plug in pan of hot oil; get hot oil on you in process.

12. Clean up.

13. Have another beer while oil is draining.

14. Look for oil filter wrench.

15. Give up; poke oil filter with Phillips screwdriver and twist it off.

16. Beer.

17. Buddy shows up; finish case with him. Finish oil change tomorrow.

18. Next day, drag pan full of old oil out from underneath car.

19. Throw oil lift (AKA kitty litter) on oil spilled during step 18.

20. Beer. No, drank it all yesterday.

21. Walk to 7-11; buy beer.

22. Install new oil filter making sure to apply thin coat of clean oil to gasket first.

23. Dump first quart of fresh oil into engine.

24. Remember drain plug from step 11.

25. Hurry to find drain plug in drain pan.

26. Hurry to replace drain plug before the whole quart of fresh oil drains onto floor.

27. Slip with wrench and bang knuckles on frame.

28. Bang head on floor board in reaction.

29. Begin cussing fit.

30. Throw wrench.

31. Cuss for additional 10 minutes because wrench hit Miss December (1999) in the left boob.

32. Clean up; apply Band-Aid to knuckle.

33. Beer.

34. Beer.

35. Dump in additional 4 quarts of oil.

36. Beer.

37. Lower car from jack stands.

38. Accidentally crush one of the jack stands

39. Move car back to apply more oil lift (AKA kitty litter) to fresh oil spilled during step 23.

40. Drive car


What They REALLY Mean In Classified Ads

If The Ad Reads . . . It Really Means

Rough condition: Too bad to lie about

Parts car: Beyond repair

Clean: Homeless dude at 5th and Main did the windows

Immaculate: Recently washed

Contours: Recently waxed

Good transportation: It's ugly

Engine quiet: Uses 90-weight oil

Needs minor overhaul: Needs engine

Needs major overhaul: Phone the junkyard

Burns no oil: It all leaks out

Rebuilt engine: Cleaned the spark plugs

Engine blueprinted: I don't know what it means either

Excellent gas mileage: It's slow

Low miles: The odometer was turned back

One owner: Can't give it away

Sure to appreciate: That's why I'm selling it

Drive it away: I live on a hill

Drive it anywhere: Within 10 miles

Desirable classic: No one wants it

Rare classic: No one wanted it even when it was new.

Stored 20 years: In a lake

Ran when stored: Won't start

Never apart: Bolts too rounded to loosen

Solid as a rock: Rusted solid

. .or best offer: I'm guessing here

Restored, with 0 miles: Won't start

Faster than a 'vette: A Chevette

Restored, with 2 miles: Won't stay running

Older restoration: First owner washed it

Good investment: Can't be worth much less

No time to restore it: Can't obtain parts

90% complete: You do the other 90%

95% complete: Other 5% doesn't exist

One owner: Hertz

Great enthusiasts car: I'm looking for a sucker

Good tires: And that's all

House forces sale: Neighbors complaining about car

Trades considered: I'm desperate

Other interests conflict: Spouse's ultimatum: "Either that #!!@&## thing goes or I go!

~~~For all the blessings of the different and unusual situations we find ourselves in, I thank You, Lord, for they have made me (and hopefully, others), grow and learn.


  1. Marcy! I can't stop laughing! That was totally the BEST! As a matter of fact...after careful research and watching what everyone else was guessing and adding up all the clues (not) my next guess would have been.....Business owners of a local convenient store and mechanics shop! LOL just kidding! Yeah and if you knew what I have actually done in the would totally get a belly laugh! This was a fun, fun, and giggly, wonderful post(s). Thanks for the great entertainment!

  2. Well, you could knock me over with a feather! I would not ever have guessed that!
    I don't think I even came close!

    Thanks for sharing this story! And in such a delightful way!
    And I loved all the jokes, and the last one sounded like me & Ray at times!

    This was fun and I'm going back to reread it all again!

  3. Marcy, as soon as I saw you posted I just had to pop over and check. No I don't think I ever would of guessed it. I had fun with your game Marcy and I can see your blessing in all of this, your attitude is something we all can learn from. Have a wonderful day my friend, I hope its a great one as you totally deserve the best day ever.......:-) Hugs

  4. Oh Marcy your guessing game was lots of fun..I never pictured that, but actually I should have...back in 1968 my husband ran a Shell gas station...and right after that we moved to Smyrna, Georgia for a few months because it didn't go well for us either...then General Motors called...and he entered an apprenticeship program and here we are retired all these years later from GM who now has money problems of their own!
    I loved your oil changing instructions for women and the classified ads.

    Now I need to go fix lunch.
    Take care!

  5. Hi Marcy, That was a surprise. But I don't think that it was so out of the box. It actually sounds like hard work but that it was good times as well. I would love doing something with Jake. We work well together!
    I loved, loved, loved the oil changing instructions. I am going to read them to Jake, he is going to love it too! Thanks Marcy!

  6. That last part was too funny..we're in the process of looking for a car for Sarah, so I got some pretty hardy laughs out of that one!
    That is really neat that you had a gas station...hence you can't run a car without it..(see, now it all makes sense. ;) I bet you had a lot of fun and were able to meet a lot of wonderful people...and a lot of people were able to meet a wonderful person (YOU!) It's nice that you have such happy memories of this time with Mario! Loved you poem...
    And...aren't you just adorable!! I saw you in the pics!!! You are should post more pics of yourself..Thanks for all the fun!!
    Love, Jerelene

  7. Pshew! Now I can get some sleep! I have been up nights way too late trying to come up with your prior occupation! I'm glad this is finally out in the open. (You are a wonderful example of hard work, dedication, humor, and positive thinking. I learn something valuable every day you post, I think.) Thanks for blessing my life.

  8. Hi Marcy, What a fun post and I appreciate you seeing/sharing God's hand in the plans He had for you during that time in your life. I hope you have a wonderful 4th.
    You asked about Harriet's bandana - the groomer puts one on her about every 6 mos. and we are lucky to get a couple of snapshots of her with it on!!!

  9. You are gifted!
    Actually, owning a service station was going to be my next guess...ya, right!
    What fun this was, and even better then fun was the moral of the story. Gods hand is always on us, His lessons are there to learn, if we seek Him and let him guide us. He goes before us.
    I think I need an oil change.

  10. Marcy....I thought someone was going to have to e-mail me because the photos took forever to download, but I was patient.
    What a great post....what a wonderful and loving wife you are. Your memories of Mario are forever ones. Thank you for such a fun and creative way to share those times in your life. I had a ball with this guessing thing.(My last guess was a beekeeper....close...?? You were bizzy as a "B"...) But Eileen should win...drawing for every 3rd guess....Gee, Louise! She had a million of 'em! (Just teasing..I hope you know that.) Thank you for letting us know your happy times, your struggles, the ways you are looking positively on life...and the blessings life brings even after we think we can't draw another breath...
    Smiles from Jackie

  11. WOW!!! and WOW again!!!! You are incredible. I'm so glad to get to know you through your blog. (((((HUGS)))))

  12. Marcy, I just want to say that this post really touched my heart. I don't know how you got through all of the things you did. Having a sick husband, children to care for, and then a business that went belly up. I have so much admiration for you. You are truly a beautiful person.
    There is no way I would have guessed this. I didn't even come close!

  13. You are absolutely amazing Marcy. Your posts are both inspiring and funny.

  14. I've been following along and thought... whowuddathunkit? Hehe. Wow that was quite a leap of faith, a heartache & light to show you full circle how to come about. blessings to you!!


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