Trina Machacek: Start and stop sniveling

Trina Machacek

Trina Machacek

Sniveling is a bit of an older word I use occasionally. Sniveling is a type of crying but not with all the connotations that come with crying. Crying envelopes too many feelings from sadness to a stop telling jokes crying with laughter. Sniveling on the other had is, according to a peek at a dictionary is said to be “crying and sniffing in a feeble or fretful way.” My definition is that sniveling is nervously laughing. Often making you feel so silly at whatever may be making you feel like crying.

The reasoning of this week’s snivel fest? This could actually happen any season but. Yes a sniveling “but.” It’s winter and there was sniveling around here in the last few days. Now it is quite laughable. That too is a good reflection of the difference between sobs and snivels. That sniveling laughter is as good a relief valve as I have ever known. So to be able to laugh about a snivel fest is the best outcome of life’s millions of trips and falls. This week I sniveled, cried and laughed and now? I have yet another memory of friends and neighbors.

I got up the other morning and went about my stuff. Feeding and shoveling snow. Grumbling under my breath about feeding and shoveling snow in winter. Then back in the house I made a cup of what I call my Trina elixir. Vanilla caramel coffee stuff and caramel creamer mixed with the hottest water to steam it all creating a frothy top. Yum. In winter I like to keep my old glass Pyrex coffee pot full of water on the stove all heated up and at the ready. I came in grumbling to mix my reward and the water was not hot-hot-hot. It was only, Mississippi swamp water in the summer warm. I figured I had set the stovetop a little too low. To warm up my cup I popped it in the microwave. Hum, microwave sounded kinda funny. Like it was cold and was having trouble getting up to speed. Yes, like me as I was out feeding and shoveling—and grumbling. Then my TV went off all by itself. The microwave dinged, it’s allotted five dings, and the coffee was not any hotter. I reset the TV and it wouldn’t come on so I, as us girls do, I unplugged it and plugged it back in. Miracles, it came back on. For about 5 minutes and then went black again.

I sat at my dining table, drinking my swamp water warm coffee looking at the black screened TV. I assessed the stove, the microwave, the TV. I remembered I was curling my bangs earlier in the bathroom. My curling iron didn’t seem to heat up. I thought I just didn’t give it enough time. I remembered I heard the battery back up of my printer beep at me earlier. It was like Tillie, my house ghost who messes with me occasionally, was trying to get my attention. Yes I have a house ghost and her name is Tillie. She followed me home from a business I sold in town some ten years ago. Anyway.

Rats, there was something wrong with the power in my house. The power wasn’t out. It just wasn’t giving it’s all. I have lived out here in rural Nevada for a number of years and I have a brain so I discussed it with myself and even though I didn’t want to admit it, I knew right away what the problem was. I had lost a “leg” of power to my house. I was suppose to get 220 volts or 110 volts but things were running “half speed.” There was definitely something askew. Then you know what I did? Yes, I sniveled. Didn’t cry, just sniveled. Oh the crying would come later, just not yet.

I eyeballed the power pole out front because that is my first line of defense. All looked fine there. I have seen it when it is not fine up the pole so I know the difference! Next came something very hard for me to do. Something I really consider my very last line, I called friends for help.

I am so blessed with a grand circle around me. Friends. The snivel of life. Thank you Lynford, Lavon and Tony Miller. In the cold of winter they came to my rescue. A scavenger hunt for a new HUGE fuse in my shop led to no avail. Then they hunted one down in the valley getting my sniveling self back to normal. Then I cried.

My hope is that I am half the friend my circle of friends are to me. I chose wisely.

Trina lives in Eureka, Nevada. Her funny books are available wherever you buy books or email her at to buy signed copies.



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