Wednesday, June 29, 2005

The Tube of Death, Part 2

[Here’s where we left off: Leeann was not the first person to go on the Tube. First was a floor mat boyfriend (not Joe) of mine, then a crackjass that RR dated, Marcel, the calculus teacher that BF/R swore was “spawned from the depths of hell,” and a guy who I thought was a true friend but wound up breaking my heart. Leeann’s boyfriend made it on the list pretty early. But she didn’t make it on the list until October 1997. That night. The night we walked home from the bar.]

Here’s the background. When we lived in the dorms, BF/R and I had suitemates called, um, Kara and Valerie. Kara and Valerie and I became good friends first, and then the next year BF/R moved into the dorm and she and RR and K and V and I all became a little group. When we’d had enough of the dorms, we decided to move into the same apartment complex. K and V wanted a roommate to share the rent, so they put an ad in the school’s roommate finding service, and of all the applicants, Leeann seemed the most normal. That’s saying a lot about the other applicants, although you don’t know it yet. Anyway, we took a vote on which of the potential applicants should get the room, and we all agreed the Leeann seemed like the most normal, although her boyfriend got a unanimous five votes for “on the creepy side.”

Nate—that was his name—Nate had a sad kind of life. His parents supported him through college. They gave him $900 a month to live on, and he had three roommates, all of whom used drugs. Keep in mind that this was eight years ago when prices were lower and that it was a small college town where expenses weren’t that high. Two weeks into the month he’d have no money and nothing to show for it. Once he dropped her off for tutoring and then later came by her apartment looking for her, because he couldn’t find her where he said he’d dropped her off, at the science building on campus. Only that’s not where he’d dropped her off. His eyes were always bloodshot. He was very unsympathetic when her fish died. And he was easily the WORST driver EVER. But Leeann didn’t think he was on drugs. What did we know about it? He said he wasn’t, and that’s all there was to it. And she didn’t seem to mind that he dropped out of school and didn’t tell her for something like three months.

So during the summer Leeann started telling us that on top of everything else, Nate hits her. We convinced her to break up with him. About two months after that she got back together with him, said we’d misunderstood, and couldn’t understand why we didn’t particularly care for him. She was one of those really, really annoying females who just doesn’t think she’s worth anything unless she’s got a boyfriend.

It just so happened that in October (the 15th, to be exact), our other roommate, Kelly, turned 21. She was the last of the group to reach that coveted age. We had a tradition in our circle that on birthdays, we always celebrated with just us “girls.” Always. That was the rule. Leeann had a better idea. She invited Nate.

Leeann also happened to be a world-class passive-aggressive wimp. I think she knew what I thought of Nate (because I’d told her), so I guess she thought she’d sneak it past me. I was in my room when I heard her tell the other gals not to tell me about it. Like they were going to keep that to themselves. Like I wouldn’t say anything to his face. I knew the other girls weren’t happy about it, but I also knew that by this time they’d already had to put up with so much of her weirdness that they weren’t going to say anything too blunt, and Leeann didn’t pick up on subtle hints. So BF/R and I went outside, ostensibly so BF/R could smoke, and we sat on the stairs and waited. A little while later, Leeann came out by herself and started to walk past us. I stopped her and said we wanted to have a little chat.

“So,” I said, “what’s this about you inviting Nate to Kelly’s birthday party?” As you can see, I’m very tactful. She was taken aback. Isn’t that a great turn of phrase? And it describes exactly how she looked. Taken aback. Eyes wide, startled expression. See, people like her don’t know what to do when someone raises their hand and says, “I call bull---.” They are taken aback. They start to flounder. They flail. They lie.

After a few false attempts that I parried nicely—the key is to remain calm and just keep calling them on their ever-changing story—she threw out a whopper. The fact is, while the other girls weren’t necessarily going to come out and say they didn’t want him there, if asked directly, they wouldn’t hide their feelings. So she made an error when she blurted out:

“I asked Kara and she said it was ok.”

“Bull----,” I immediately shot back. Yes, dear readers, I swore. I didn't yell at her, but I did swear. Absolutely no way Kara had agreed to inviting Nate, and I couldn't believe Leeann had the nerve to say that. Kara hated Nate and would never outright say it was ok. Besides, it wasn’t her birthday, so she couldn’t give permission. So I called Leeann on it.

She was taken aback.

Her response? She turned around and ran away.

Seriously. Turned around. Ran—ran—away.

This time, I was taken aback. BF/R and I just looked at each other. We didn't know what to say. We'd never seen anything like it.

We never heard another word about it from her until the night of the party, although Kara did let me know that Nate had been uninvited. We were going to take two cars because in addition to BF/R, RR, Kara, Valerie, Kelly, and me, our former roommate, Hillary [this pseudonym thing is hard!], was going, as well as her cousin Jane. So that meant we needed two designated drivers. Most of us weren’t exactly drunks, but safety first! After all, it was Kelly’s 21st birthday. Jane volunteered to drive my car, and Leeann volunteered to drive her car. Nobody asked her. She volunteered. She also volunteered to hold Kelly’s I.D. because Kelly didn’t have pockets in her skirt. Then Hillary said she’d take her own car because she was leaving early.

So we get there, and our upstairs neighbors Jamie and Eric show up. We don’t know Jamie that well, but Eric was a sort of friend, so we were happy to see them. We have a good time dancing the night away. After a bit, Hillary said goodbye and left. After we’d been there maybe an hour and half, that’s when we noticed Leeann. Specifically, that’s when we noticed that Leeann wasn’t there to be noticed. She was gone. We couldn’t find her anywhere.

That’s strange, we thought. She must be here somewhere. Hmm. We asked around the group. “Oh,” Jane said. “She left.” We were taken aback.

That can’t be right. She was our designated driver. And maybe we haven’t had much to drink and could drive ourselves home, but first we’d need a car for that.

“Left? Is she, um, coming back?” “Uh, I don’t think so.” “Did she say anything?” “No, she just left when Hillary did.” Ok, ok, ok. Don’t get mad. Breathe in and out. Deeeeep breaths.

Later we found out what happened. I talked to Hillary about it, and she said that she told Leeann she was leaving, and Leeann said she wanted to leave as well, but she was afraid we’d make her stay. Accurate assumption, there, Leeann. Yes, yes we would have. Hillary didn’t know Leeann was our designated driver, so she said that if she was worried about it, just leave without telling us. Hillary knew we could be overbearing at times and could certainly gang up on Leeann. She didn’t know that Leeann had no spine. She didn’t know that all it would take for us to “make” Leeann stay was to suggest that she ought to. That’s how I wound up with a cat. We were at the animal shelter, and she picked a cat up out of its cage, and I said, and this is an exact quote, “Oh, are you getting a cat?” Later it turns out that she got the cat because I had talked her into it. But Hillary was just trying to avoid a fight.

About that time our neighbors said they were heading home, so we decided we’d better get a ride home with them because we cannot all fit in my car that Jane is driving. But then Jane says she wants to go home, too. She’s the other designated driver, so we said, no, she had to stay. By this time we’ve explained what’s happening to the rest of the gals out on the dance floor, and Kelly, the birthday girl, has an unhappy realization.

“That’s ok,” she said, “I can drive.” We looked at her, because we’re all thinking if there’s one person tonight who won’t be in a state to drive anywhere, it will be her. Not so, it turns out. When Leeann left, she didn’t tell anybody, including Kelly. And that meant she hadn’t given Kelly back her I.D. So Kelly, on her 21st birthday, was the only person in the group who could not buy a drink that night.

Ok, all is fine and good. We get in Jamie’s car, and we’ve gone, oh, 50 feet, when Jane makes him stop. She announces that Jamie has had too much to drink and she won’t ride home with him. Jamie, on the other hand, won’t let anyone drive his car. This is a problem. Jane gets out of the car. We can’t let her walk home by herself, so BF/R and I get out, too, and Eric decides to be chivalrous and get out as well. Jamie zooms off.

In Jane’s defense, it takes a lot of guts to speak up when you think someone’s had too much to drink. In Jamie’s defense, he’d had about two beers the whole evening.

So we’re walking. We’re not anticipating having to walk too far because it’s a small town, nothing is too far away, and surely we can find someone we know to give us a ride. Keep in mind that us girls are wearing “dancing shoes,” i.e. heels. Jane is walking very fast. We get about one street down from the club when Eric realizes that we’re right by the home of someone he knows. He says we can get a ride home with her.

No, no, that’s not good enough for Jane. She doesn’t know this person, and she won’t get in a car with a stranger. Ok, but, um . . . ok, keep walking.

We’re walking, we’re walking. The walking has an unpleasant effect on Jane. After around five minutes, Eric realizes that we’re getting close to his sister’s apartment. She can drive us home. Yea! No more walking. Nope, nothing doing. Jane also doesn’t know Eric’s sister. At this point, as she later admitted, she was just being stubborn and was too embarrassed to admit it. Jane starts walking faster and faster, and pretty soon, she’s a good 50 feet ahead of us, getting further and further away. We tried to make her slow down. No such luck. Finally the street we were on dead-ended onto another street. Civilization was to the right. Naturally, she went left. Eric goes after her. We are thoroughly sick of both of them by this time, and we head right. Right to the McDonald’s, to a pay phone. BF/R has a phone call she wants to make. She has something to say.

She dials Leeann’s number. The answering machine picks up. She calls back. Leeann finally picks up. Keep in mind that we’ve walked about a mile and half in heels by this point.

L: hello?

B/FR: It’s [BF/R]. We need you to come pick us up.

Ok, I didn’t hear the rest of Leeann’s side of the conversation, but I did hear BF/R’s. For example, I heard her explain where we were. I heard her reaction when Leeann said that no, she would not come pick us up. BF/R said calmly, “You are our designated driver. Come pick us up.” A moment later, she said, “Kara’s not here, come pick us up.” A moment later, “Kara’s not here. We’re at McDonald’s.” Then she reminded Leeann that she had ditched us, we were stranded, come pick us up. This goes on for about a minute, BF/R getting increasingly angry, when finally she starts banging the receiver against the phone, shouting, “Kara’s not [expletive] here, come pick us up!”

Yeah, that didn’t work so well. Apparently [this is her story], Leeann thought we were still at the club and that BF/R was drunk. I’m not sure why. She seemed pretty lucid to me. At first, I mean. Before she started hitting the phone.

So, anyway, we are stuck walking the rest of the way home because the only people whose phone numbers we know are back at the club, and besides, at this point we’re really, really mad. Unfortunately, the rest of the walk—another good mile and a half—is mostly down a two-lane road with no streetlights and lots of greenery. It’s a neighborhood, but it’s one of those where the houses are set way back and there’s a lot of trees in the front so you can’t see the houses. I guess it’s a good thing that we were so angry because one thing I’m afraid of is the country. Under normal circumstances, I would have spent the whole walk petrified that some critter was going to come running out at us, probably foaming at the mouth. As it was, I was too busy becoming angrier and angrier with every step of my three-inch heels.

As we get about a short block from the apartment, Eric picks us up. Apparently he beat us home somehow. Thanks for the rescue. That last block would have been killer.

So he drops us off at apartment and then heads back out to look for Jane, who he lost somehow (she was ok, she’d gone to the grocery store and gotten a friend to pick her up). We get up to the door, and that’s when we realized that we didn’t have our keys. They were with Jane. Jane, our designated driver. Grrrr.

Ok, so now what? Well, we have a spare key. It’s in Leeann’s apartment. Lucky for us, we know she’s home. We walk over there and knock on the door. No answer. We knock a little harder. No answer. We knock a little harder. No answer. We walk around the apartment to the other side (these apartments, by the way, were pretty much duplexes). We go to her window. The lights are out, but the window is open. We have to get into the flowerbed to get to it, but we knock on the window. No answer. We can’t see in through the screen, but we’re pretty sure she’s in there.

We’re standing there, in the bushes, knocking on her open window, when the sprinklers come on.

Yes, you read that right.

We get out of the flowerbed, now dripping wet, and walk back around to the door. This time, I practically kick the door down while I’m yelling “give me my key!” Finally she came to the door. She looks at us and says—I’m not making this up—she says, “What’s wrong?”

All I could say, through clenched teeth, was “”

Later that night, when Valerie and Kara got home, they saw that Leeann had written on their dry erase board “why does everyone hate me?”

Oh, Leeann.

So that, ladies and gentlemen, is how she wound up on the Tube of Death. There were other reasons as well. For example, let’s take the cat that I had apparently talked her into getting. I said she could keep her at my place if she paid half the pet deposit. That way neither of us would have to pay the whole thing. Later, I asked her for my $200. She said she’d never agreed to that. Yes you did, I said. Yes, you did, said the eyewitnesses. She cried. Then she said she would pay me. After we had that exact conversation three times, I gave up. That’s why she’s on the TOD. Because what else can you do with someone like that?

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

The Tube of Death, Part 1

Warning: This post is VERY LONG.

BF/R and I got along pretty much from the start. We don't always agree when it comes to things like religion or political beliefs or how much someone would have to pay you to chop off your pinky finger (me: no amount of money; her: I believe the figure was five grand and she'd do the chopping herself), but that’s never mattered with us. Our theory is, once you find someone who would hock her t.v. for you, you hang on to her. Seriously, I don't think there's anything she wouldn't do for me or RR. Personality-wise, we are almost the same person. For one thing, when it comes to action, in any given situation, we’re liable to do something just because it annoys somebody else. For example, when we lived in the dorm, we had THE tackiest room ever, due in part to the string of Christmas lights with empty cigarette packs on the bulbs, the collection of empty dr. pepper cans on top of her shelves, and a good half of our wardrobe hanging from the ceiling. Our suitemates snuck in our room once while we gone and hung the top layer of clothes from the floor on the ceiling. We left them up because it made it easier to pick out what we were going to wear that way. We could just lie on our respective beds and say “let’s see, I guess I’ll wear *that* today.” I think that they were trying to make a point, but we missed it, whatever it was. The tackiness was not helped by the piñata hanging from the ceiling. BF/R bought the piñata to spite me because when she’d brought it to me in the store to show me, I’d said “oh, you’re not buying that.” She looked me dead in the eyes and put it right in the cart. What can I say? I’d have done the same thing. And it served me right; I knew better.

I’d found out that she was like that (that is to say, just like me) on our first bonding experience, a trip to New Orleans that we’d decided to take after knowing each other for just a few days. We were giving a ride to a guy (we’ll call him Mark) who was meeting up with some friends. We stuck him in the back seat with sis (RR—I’m so sorry), and he kindly volunteered to drive. Over and over again. And again. “Hey, you know, if you get tired or anything, let me know, I’d be happy to drive.” Because if she got tired, naturally she’d turn the driving over to the man in the car. To this day, I cannot stand that guy. Not just because of that weekend. About two years later, a mutual acquaintance called me up to tell me he thought I’d like to know that Mark had told him that we made out once. Oh, we SO did not mug down. Ok, one evening I let him kiss me—briefly—because it became very clear to me that I was either going to have to beat him off with a stick, let him kiss me, or continue to look at the ground for the rest of the evening. I took the path of least resistance. But I wouldn’t brag about it if I were him. Besides, you do not accost someone and then claim it as some kind of victory. Where have all the gentlemen gone? Anyway, by the time we were halfway there, when he again volunteered to drive, I leaned over and said quietly to her, “Please don’t let him drive.” She said, “Don’t worry,” punctuated with a tone in her voice and a look in her eyes that added “I’ll die a natural death before I let that happen.” I knew then, right at that moment, that we’d be friends. So I should have known better than to tell her she wasn’t getting the piñata.

He was not the most obnoxious person ever to sit in a back seat on a road trip to New Orleans. That dubious distinction is shared by BF/R and RR, who got bored and set on fire the little plastic Barbie that had come in one of their happy meals. I don't know if you've ever been trapped in a car with the smell of burning Barbie hair, but I do not recommend it. I guess that wasn't obnoxious so much as just noxious.

After we’d been roommates for about two years, one in the dorm and one in Big Al’s apartment complex, she started saving cardboard, mostly empty toilet paper and paper towel rolls. She’s very artsy, but not cutesy-artsy, so I couldn’t imagine what she was planning on doing with them. I asked her if it had a point. She laughed in the way that indicates that she knew that whatever she was doing, she didn’t have an explanation for it that would not provoke me to make fun of her, so she kept it simple, said she was thinking about doing something with them. I let it go at that. After all, I am the daughter of the man who would stop me at the trash and say “You’re throwing that out? That’s a perfectly good piece of cardboard!” Far be it from me to demand she throw it out. But I knew she wasn't going to get rid of them, because I'd called her on it, so she was going to keep them. And if I said anything again, she'd just keep them longer. This is the woman who made me her maid of honor so that I'd have to spend time with the best man who I cannot stand.

But after awhile, man, they were everywhere. So finally, I asked her if she was going to do something with them or no. I guess I caught her in the right mood, or they were getting on her nerves, too. She threw them all out, save one paper towel roll. I guess pride demanded that after saving them for so long, she had to do something. We weren’t sure what she was going to do with it, but she managed to make something unique.

“It’s the Tube of Death,” she said. I can honestly say I don’t think there’s anything else like it in the whole world. The Tube of Death (“TOD”) is a paper towel roll covered in a piece of white construction paper with the words “Tube of Death” written at the top in blue puff paint. Below that, written in pencil, are the following words:

This tube is dedicated to the thousands of poor souls who have had the misfortune of angering, upsetting, irritating, hurting, or in any other way tipping the balance of sanity in the abode.

So simple, yet so perfect. We decided to write on there the names of the people who were, forever after the inscription of their names thereupon, dead to us.

Now, I know that sounds harsh. A number of people have told us that it’s just plain cold. But you tell me which is worse: harboring resentment, hurt, or a grudge for years, or simply making the decision that you aren’t going to waste any more time or feelings on someone that just isn’t worth it? Keep in mind, we (usually) only put someone’s name on the list if the person did something pretty much unforgivable. Usually. I mean, there are rules. You have to think about it before you put someone's name on it, cause once it's on there, that's it. It's permanent.

Let me give you on example. There are a number of names on the TOD, but I’m going to tell you about one in particular. In a fit of charity and kindness, I’m going to give her a pseudonym. We’ll call her Lee . . . ann. Leeann.

Leeann was not the first person to go on the Tube. First was a floor mat boyfriend (not Joe) of mine, then a crackjass that RR dated, Marcel, the calculus teacher that BF/R swore was “spawned from the depths of hell,” and a guy who I thought was a true friend but wound up breaking my heart. Leeann’s boyfriend made it on the list pretty early. But she didn’t make it on the list until October 1997. That night. The night we walked home from the bar.

[end of part 1: stay tuned for part 2]

Bee Sting

Some people think my sister is very sweet. And she is. But like everyone in our family, she has a sort of mean streak. We call it “a sense of humor.”

She was really on a roll today. Just now, I called her for the purpose of finding out when she was leaving work so that I could plan dinner, because I’m very hungry. I told her that I’d been hungry all day, which is unlike me. Her response:

“Maybe you’re sick. Maybe you have a parasite . . .[then she added with an evil tone] a BUUUUGG.”

Then when I asked her twice what time she was leaving work, she said, “you already asked me that, grandma,” referring to my grandmother who had Alzheimer’s.

See? She's mean. Man, she cracks me up.

Time Waster

I had forgotten all about this one:

10 years

That's the approximate time my sister and I think it will take before no one can understand our conversations. It started when my dad said we used quotations so much that "in another 10 years our conversations will be completely unintelligible to others." It's true--wuse so much quoting, inside jokes, and other such things, that although we know what we mean, currently about 20% of our talking means nothing to anyone but each other. So now, when one of us realizes that we've just said something that no one else is getting, she just says "10 years."

I'm saying this as a warning because we comment on each other's blogs, and it's just a matter of time before we stop making sense.

Shelby Foote, R.I.P.

You can read about him at

As a fellow Memphian and historian, I have long appreciated him, and I am saddened by his passing. He will be missed.

Have you visited the Surrealist Compliment Generator yet?

The Green Paint on the Walls Clouds my Thoughts of Flying Planks of Wood, Much Like the Elephant Impaled on the Hood of a Lincoln Town Car. Blood Covers One, Paint the Other, and Love Covers You.

Monday, June 27, 2005

Coming Attractions

Blog topics for later this week:
The Tube of Death
Apartments I have had, part 2

there, now you have something to look forward to.

Apartments I Have Had, part 1

Or rather, mold and mildew experiences I have had.

My very first apartment was a three-bedroom that I shared with anywhere from three to five other girls, two cats, a bird, and a dog that occassionally showed up at our back door. It looked nice from the outside, and we loved the floor plans and the cheap, cheap rent. The cheap rent was indicative of the quality of the apartment, which had clearly seen better days. The grocery store across the street sold large buckets of lard. I remember that distinctly. I also remember that on our first trip to said grocery store, we asked if we could borrow the grocery cart to push our groceries home in (we had hoofed it instead of driving across the street, because driving had seemed ridiculous until after we’d bought our groceries). We promised to bring it back. I also remember pushing the dirty, rusty cart back across the street in the dead of the night two years later.

We knew we weren’t getting our deposit back, because we did a number on that carpet. The very first night we were there, my Best Friend/Roommate tripped and dropped a bottle of Strawberry Hill on the carpet. A few months later, my other roommate threw a pumpkin at me and it got all over the carpet (and me). Technically, she claims that she was not throwing it at me so much as away from herself, but in the end, it amounts to the same thing, because I was directly in the line of fire. It ruined my tiger slippers. Of course, I’d never really felt the same way about them after that time they were attacked by a ferret (while I was wearing them), but still, they had been a gift, and I was sorry to see them go. There were countless other indignities suffered by the carpet, including that last semester we were there, one roommate threw up rotel dip all over everywhere.

But there was also extensive water damage to the carpet, so we didn’t feel like it was entirely our fault that the carpet needed to be replaced. This was the apartment in which the H knob shot off of my sister’s shower, resulting in water spewing everywhere. The apartment complex’s solution to all the flooding that resulted from that was to put a box fan in the hallway. No offense, Big Al, but you blew it on that one. It also experienced flooding whenever it rained, because the apartment slanted and so water would just run in from the back porch. We didn’t notice the slanting at first, until one day my sister noticed her medicine cabinet wasn’t straight. Then she realized it wasn’t the medicine cabinet. After that I was very uneasy about the structural integrity of the building.

It wasn’t until I was cleaning out stuff when we were moving that I noticed that there was mold or mildew all along the carpet by the wall in my bedroom. I hadn’t noticed it before because that was BF/R’s side of the room, and the last time I’d been by that window was when she and I cut a hole in the screen and went out that way once when our boyfriends were visiting. They’d both been out of town for the semester to do internships, and they’d come in to town to visit. We had been unable to prevent it, not without actually breaking up with them. When they showed up, we discovered we’d rather be somewhere else. She and I had made some excuse and fled to our bedroom, deserting my poor sister and leaving her as a decoy. BF/R and both very considerate people when apart but we bring out the worst in each other. [I’ll blog on that some other time, possibly under the topic “things I have done which as a Christian woman I should probably be ashamed of but I’m just not.”] Our first thought was to just stay in the bedroom until someone came and looked for us. That’s when I got the brilliant idea to cut a hole in the screen. My thinking was that if we were very careful, we could sew it back up later and the apartment complex would be none the wiser. Actually we never did sew it up, and later wasps built a nest in the window frame, so we couldn’t open our window after that.

Anyway, we cut a whole in the window screen and climbed out. That’s when we realized the flaw in our plan—we couldn’t get in our cars because we’d left the keys inside. Also, we’d left my sister behind, and you never leave a man behind. So we went back, walked in the front door, and claimed that we’d walked out that way in the first place and had told them we were leaving, and it wasn’t our fault that no one had paid attention. [And I’m sorry to say that the incident did not spell the end of my relationship with Joe (not his real name). I was too much of a sucker and he was too much of a sap. But that’s another blog.]

So ANYWAY, I was cleaning out the apartment when I discovered that the mildew had reached my closet and had infected a box in my closet, full of letters and other mementos, many of which were now ruined. I started to sort through the items to see what could be salvaged when an ENORMOUS cockroach jumped out of the box and down my shirt. Oh, the humanity. I’m sure the screaming could be heard for miles. It exited my shirt and I killed it, and I may have then thrown up. I certainly went and took a shower, but for all that it was a long time before I felt clean again. And this is why, to this day, I don’t like to try to kill those things. Because at any moment, it could jump on me.

This had happened to me once before, at a summer job. My friend and I were cleaning the bathroom (because that’s what the summer help had to do in addition to helping customers. “yes, sir, I have just been cleaning the toilets, but here, let me hand you your change.”), when a roach jumped out from behind the wall and onto my leg and then on my friend and then disappeared to parts unknown. We didn’t realize we were screaming, but my manager came flying back there, clearly expecting to see us being killed by an intruder. He was a tall, lanky man named Andy something who was as laid back as they came, probably because he had a coffee mug permanently glued to his hand. If you asked him how much coffee he’d had that day, he’d say “not enough.” This was the most alert I had every seen him, and I’d certainly never seen him move that fast. He wasn’t happy about the screaming when he realized we were not, in fact, being assaulted, at least not by a human or a pack of wild dogs, nor had we just discovered a corpse. We told him that next time a roach came out of nowhere and jumped on him, then he could tell us not to scream. For the rest of the day, I did that involuntary twitch where you jump and then make sure nothing’s on you.

I have more stories about that apartment, but I’ll save them for another time. Suffice to say, my apartment experience since then has not been greatly improved.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

coffee, part 2

So a few minutes ago, we had this conversation.

I said something to my sister while I was pouring myself a bowl of crack, a.k.a. "Life cereal." A full minute later, she looked up from what she was reading and said "what?"

I looked at her blankly.

Her: You said something.

Me: Oh. [pause, racking brain] I can't remember. [pause] I think I was just talking.

Her: [At this point she nodded knowingly and tried to say something to the effect of, we aren't functioning because we haven't had coffee, but what she said was] "I blame it on the without--," and here she stopped, because she realized it wasn't coming out right. She sighed and shook her head, indicating that she was giving up, doubting her ability to get out anything any more clear.

I nodded at her in sympathy and empathy. "We'll go get some in a minute," I said.

Don't worry, we won't be driving there.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Make it strong, make it sweet, just the way my life has been. Make it coffee, coffee, coffee, and you've absolutely got yourself a friend.

Unlike some people, I love my coffee. Love it. I didn't used to love it so much, but in college we used to study at IHOP, and they kick you out unless you order something. Anyway, seven years later, I'm pretty much dependent. I once told a friend that if you're a true coffee drinker, you'll drink anything, but she disagreed, saying that she won't drink the stuff that comes free in the hotels. Sorry, no. If you are a true coffee drinker, you'll stand in line at 7/11 for a cup from the pot that's been congealing for 7 hours.

I try periodically to kick the habit. I know the coffee-stained teeth and the coffee breath aren't attractive. One day when I was still at my last job, I mentioned to a coworker that I was trying to quit, and she wrinkled her nose and said incredulously, "what, again?" That's when I realized that if I was going to keep quitting, starting, quitting, and starting again, I first had to quit talking about it. No sense everybody knowing what a failure you are.

I realized that without the coffee I didn't function as well, but I didn't realize how much it affected my mood. Then one day I was at school bright and early, and I was pretty surly (I don't like getting up very much). "It's too bright, it's too early, it sucks that I'm here this early, I hate this," was pretty much the mantra going on in my head. I stopped by the little shop in the law school that sells coffee, bought my coffee and started drinking it, and walked outside towards the library. I got outside the door and stopped.

The sun was shining, birds were chirping, the air seemed clean and crisp. "Well, my goodness," I said, "it's just a lovely morning. What a wonderful day!"

That's when I realized I had a problem. But luckily, I can control it. With coffee. Or as I now call it, "mood neutralizer."

The first time I tried to quit, my dad was very alarmed. "But you need it," he said, "it's like a vitamin." He started sending me websites extolling the benefits of a cup a day. "See," he'd say, "it's good for you." My dad's a big coffee drinker. He'd been trying to get us kids to drink coffee for some time, probably because he was a lonely coffee drinker, as my mom won't go near the stuff. Everyone knows that coffee is a social drug. Now that we kids are all hooked, it's good times for one and all. On a good day, we sit around drinking coffee and we get to watch Perry Mason. We will pretty much watch ANY show that is even remotely related to solving mysteries. But that's another blog for another time.

Anyway, so this morning, we're out running an errand (one which I got up EARLY to go do, because I had to drive to my parents' house), and I happen to mention to my dad that I was so sleepy that I almost had fallen asleep on the drive to his house. This was all it took for him to insist that we stop at starbucks. I admit, I had hoped that would be his reaction. I was really sleepy, and I'd had no coffee, because I'm so cheap (though not as cheap as my sister), and I get it free at work, so I haven't been able to bring myself to buy any for home. So anyway, dad leaves the car running while I go in (it's Texas, so we prefer to leave someone in the car with the air running). I'd asked him if he'd wanted any, and he'd said "no, I've already had two cups today. . . Get me a small." I was getting a mocha, because I do not care for starbucks regular coffee (see previous posts: starbucks=burnt newspaper). So I order one small mocha (do NOT get me started on that preposterous tall/grande/venti nonsense--"oh, a grande. I must be in Italy. How fancy this is.")

(this is me ordering coffee.
Me: "I'll have a small mocha, please."
Them: "tall mocha?"
Me: [pleasantly, but firmly] "small.")
(this is akin to me refusing to give stores my phone number or zip code. More on that some other time).

ANYWAY, I order one small mocha and a small breakfast blend. The woman confirms my order:
Her: "tall mocha, and that was a tall COD?"
Me: blank look
Her: "COD?"
Me: [sound of crickets chirping]
Her: "coffee of the day?"
Me: [relieved] "yes, the breakfast blend."

Ok, why didn't she ask me if that was breakfast blend? After all, there are TWO "COD's", so that's not really confirming my order, is it, to throw confusing lingo at me? If' I'd said yes, that still wouldn't have told her exactly what to put in the "tall," would it? That must have been the feelings of the guy in line behind me, who gallantly stuck up for me. "She hasn't had her coffee yet. Don't confuse her with acronyms."

Maybe it was just because I hadn't had coffee yet, but although I hadn't noticed him before then, after that, he seemed very attractive. So the point of this long blog is, Mr. Whoever you are, even though you went to U.T., and burnt orange is not your color, I would marry you tomorrow, if you'll promise to follow me around in the mornings and defend me from the cruel caffeine dealers who have nothing better to do on a Saturday morning than play stump the caffeine-deprived. But you should know that I don't leave my house in the summer time. But for you, I would. In the mornings, when it's cooler. To get coffee.

I smell like outside

I just supervised whilst sister put mulch in a flower bed. Got very warm--even, dare I say it, mildly sweaty. Ew. Must shower.

Friday, June 24, 2005

Raul, I am so sorry, but it's just how I am

I’m calling in a maintenance request to my apartment complex, which I hate to do because then Raul will come in and see my messy apartment. [I’ve changed his name in case by some strange coincidence, he happens to read blogs. His name is nothing at all like Raul, which is why I picked it.] Raul is the head maintenance guy at our apartment. We like Raul. Raul is a little bashful and has a perfectly charming accent. He is also on a diet, which for some reason makes him seem even more personable. Me, too, Raul, me too. I also cannot eat the cookies. He also actually fixes things, unlike at my last apartment, where they “fixed” the mold on my window by painting over it.

Raul captured my heart when in one visit to fix the thermostat, he commended me for listening to classical music and then, when leaving, commanded me to lock my door, as if to say “you never know what kind of foul ruffians are about this evening, waiting to do harm to a lovely young woman such as yourself.”

Ok, maybe more like “safety first.” But still.

Anyway, I like Raul so much because he’s the first normal maintenance man that I’ve dealt with (meaning the first one I haven't been nervous about being alone in my apartment with). No, I take that back. In my very first apartment, the head maintenance man was a man named Big Al. Big Al was a (obviously) large, jolly older fellow with a paternal manner and a twinkle in his eye. Big Al had a large belt buckle that said “Big Al.” Big Al didn’t blink an eye when the “H” knob shot off of my sister’s shower and began spewing out hot water.

[That is another funny story. Sis was in my bathroom washing her face while my Best Friend/Roommate was washing her hair in sis’s bathroom. She was leaning over the tub washing it under the spout when the H knob shot off. RR meanwhile, was thinking that she heard something, but it was unintelligible. But it certainly sounded like someone was making a racket. It sounded like maybe someone was calling her name. So she went out of the bathroom and out of my bedroom and into the hall. BF/R shot out of RR’s bathroom, knob and towel in hand and said, very evenly, “Help. Me.” They tried to force the knob back on, but it was no go. Ok, maybe that’s only funny because I know the people involved. Anyway.]

But since Big Al, they were all pretty unsavory types. But Raul is very nice. Once a cat died under our apartment, and he had to go through my closet to get it out. You can imagine my mortification when I realized he’d had to move all my shoes AND my dirty clothes hamper. I was HORRIFIED. I mean, this strange man carrying around my hamper with about 30 pounds worth of sweaters with mystery stains and, oh yeah, my panties. I mean, it’s not like he could see anything, but I couldn’t stop thinking that somewhere in that hamper was my underwear. And also that he probably threw his back out trying to move it, which couldn’t have made a good impression. And the shoe thing. I’m sure he was asking himself as he moved them, “how many pairs of black strappy sandals does a person need?” The answer: as many as you can get.

Anyway, today I have to call Raul and ask him to fix something, but my apartment is messy, and so once again, I will be embarrassed. Raul must not have a very good impression of me anymore. But I have to call today because something is leaking into my bathroom from the floor above. Once RR had a manicurist tell her that just the day before, the bathtub from the apartment above hers had fallen into her bathroom. So now I’m paranoid. This must be fixed, and right away. I need my bathroom. After all, I can’t exactly change clothes in my room, what with all the peeping. So what’s a girl to do? Raul will just have to think I’m a slob. Which is fair, because I guess I am.

I guess it's better than "In the Ghetto"

I have Cibo Matto's "Know your Chicken" stuck in my head. I guess it's appropriate. But it's still annoying. All I know is the chorus.

Wait! My link is gone! How come you don't love me anymore?

If your the link to your blog is missing from my links section, fear not! I'm rearranging and figuring out how I want to format everything. Everything will be back to normal before too long.

Stuff I like

For those of you who have not yet been to see, impatient bee's current post discusses my very favorite JFK conspiracy theory, and kim's second and last posts are exactly the type of things that always seem to happen to me. And for that matter, to Deals.

Pervertido returns

So this morning, I got up, and when I was wandering around the apartment brushing my teeth (I'm a mobile brusher), I happened to glance at my window --and I saw the tell-tale feet. I got a little closer, and sure enough, pervertido was back. I decided against running out there in my Hello Kitty pajamas and decided instead to go stare at him from a different window. This I did. It afforded me a nice view of the back of him. He was on the phone, obviously unhappy about something, and every few seconds, craning his head around to peer into my window. I stared at him openly, and I think he may have noticed. I went and spat out my toothpaste, and when I came back, he was in his car. That's right, he drove over to visit me, apparently. He was still on the phone, gesturing. A minute later, he drove away.

This is all a little mysterious to me. Was he picking someone up who didn't show? Is that who he was calling? Was he calling someone to say "she's on to me, man"? All I know is, I'm calling the apartment manager today and having a little chat. As Steve would say:
Machacaré su cabeza con un mezclador!!

An Open Reply to Deals

I do not play tennis. That involves sweating. Also the racket is very heavy. I am not opposed to lacrosse. Well, actually, I am not opposed to running with a stick. But only for about 5 minutes. Then I'd need to go home and take a shower.

I am not completely opposed to playing tennis if we play it sometime when it's dark and I'm well-covered in bug spray. But then once I start to sweat I'll be worried about the bug spray running into my eyes. So we could only play for about 10 minutes. I do not have a racket because I sold it right after I graduated from college--(1) I was broke, and (2) after taking badminton, the tennis racket seemed too big and clunky and hitting the ball was hard. (Oo! Badminton! We could play that! So dainty and ladylike. Unless you are one of the Asian men from my badminton class who were clearly not beginners and it was a little unfair to have to be in the same class with them, especially that weird girl who wasn't very physically fit and talked about "Titanic" ALL. THE. TIME). Also, I'm much, much worse than my sister at tennis. It could be my tendency to stand in one place and call everything "out." And you will find that while my sister will politely continue playing for sometime past the point where she'd like to quit, I am not so polite. I'll complain enough so that no one is having a good time and will decide to stop playing. Then everyone will be mad at me, but I won't care because I'll get to go home. I win!

Anyway. But if you want to play sometime, just let me know. I think they sell rackets at the grocery store.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

There's just something about that place

Poor Deals and bee. They get all the "difficult" people at their "museum." No matter how bad my day is, I'm always grateful I don't have to deal with people like this.

I couldn't fix your brakes, so I made your horn louder

I admit that I suffer from road rage. I think that most people do, and why should I be any different. But it’s only certain things that set me off. For instance, people who are too good to wait in lines (bozos) and those people who accommodate the bozos (idiots). I do not like it when someone waits until the last minute to get over into the lane he needs to be in because he doesn’t want to wait behind the long line of cars already in that lane. I do not like it when the bozo honks and gestures angrily at me when I don’t let him over, like I have some sort of legal or moral obligation to do so, even if letting him over would mean he would get to make it through the light while I did not. I do not like the idiot in front of me who lets that bozo get in the lane. I had to deal with that this morning, although I didn’t get to be Freeway Enforcer. Freeway Enforcer is what my sister and I call ourselves when we take it upon ourselves to force someone else to obey traffic laws. We try not to do it, because we don’t to get shot. But I digress. I did not get to be Freeway Enforcer and keep the bozos in their lanes. Some idiot let them over.

When I’m driving to work, on one of the roads there is this one lane that’s closed.
Yet every day, I see someone zooming down that lane until they get to the orange cones, at which point they force their way into the other lane. This angers me. I refuse to believe that the drivers don’t know the lane is closed. Besides the “land closed” signs, you can see the orange cones up ahead very clearly. Plus, use common sense. If there are two lanes of traffic completely stacked with cars, and there’s another lane completely devoid of cars, do you really think there’s not a good reason why no one else is in that lane? And then of course, some idiot lets them over, so I don’t even get the satisfaction of not letting them over. And then I get on the freeway, where it’s more of the same.

I also don’t like it when people drive on the shoulder of the freeway because they don’t want to deal with the line of traffic merging onto the freeway.
So they just take the shoulder and then cut someone off. It never occurs to them that they are the reason there’s a line to get onto the freeway. My sister and I used to carpool, and we always meant to have an extra cup of coffee in the car so that we could throw it at them as they drove by, but we couldn’t bring ourselves to waste coffee like that. I knew a guy that would drive partially on the shoulder to keep them from getting by. They’d honk at him and get mad, and he’d say to them (though of course they couldn’t hear him), “oh, you’re mad at me for driving on the shoulder? Do you see why that’s funny?”

I’m afraid I’m going to turn into my sister, who at one time used her horn way too often.
The least little thing would set her off, and she’d lay on the horn. Seriously, take the slightest bit too long to turn, and she was letting you know about it. One day she decided she needed to learn to relax. “I’m too honk-y,” she said. “Perhaps you should say you’re too honk-ish,” I told her.

I don’t want to become too honk-ish.
I think I need to always live within walking distance of everything.

Speaking of Chicken Jokes

Ok, so since we're making jokes involving the word chicken, now seems like a good time to tell my favorite joke:

Why does a chicken coop have two doors?

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Well sure, if I *wanted* to run a whorehouse . . .

I’m doing research on Nevada corporation law, and I’m looking up treatises and practice guides, and although I’m finding lots of stuff for pretty much every other state, not many people have written much about the laws of Nevada. This makes me wonder about this wisdom of ever going there. And interestingly, when I typed "Nevada legal guide" into google, it pulled up a lot of stuff about brothels.

A Review, by JLR

Today we are reviewing the Odwalla Bar! nourishing food bar in the peanut crunch flavor.

It has 8 grams of protein. I suppose that is a plus.

It has an annoying name. First of all, don’t put exclamation points as a part of your product’s name, unless it’s something like “Oh, boy!,” which needs to be distinguished from the “oh, boy” meaning “uh-oh.” You don’t get to decide whether your product is exciting enough to merit the exclamation point. Second, don’t call it an Odwalla bar nourishing food bar. That’s like having a sign that says “Donut shop! We sell donuts.”

The flavor: it doesn’t taste like potatoes, like some other bars SUPPOSEDLY do. It does have a peanut butter-like taste. I do not find it offensive.

The texture: a little on the firm side, but I do plan on eating the whole thing.

Over all review: if you can choke down a power bar, you probably would like this. I can see myself buying this product again in the future.


If you haven’t been to Blinky Moments, I recommend it. She only has one post so far (that I can tell), but you will, I’m certain, feel better about your job after having read it.

There's something floating in my tea

So I’m sitting here drinking my tea. It’s Apple Blossom green tea from the Republic of Tea. I’m not overly fond of the company. It’s got that stupid “approved by the Minister of Well-Being” sticker on it, which is so . . . I just . . . AAAAAAA! I HATE IT!

I didn’t let that deter me from buying the tea because I didn’t want it to be one of those situations where I don’t into a store because they use incorrect grammar in their signage or not buy a product because I hate its commercial. Also, it was the only green tea flavor at the store that was remotely appealing. Anyway, there’s a tiny speck of something floating around the bottom, so every time I take a sip, I keep my eye on it. Between that and that stupid Minister of Well-Being obnoxiousness, the tea drinking has not been the relaxing experience I’d hoped it would be, despite the pleasant flavor of the tea.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Well, at least the coffee is free

I went into the kitchen just now and poured out my coffee, and at the bottom of my cup, the residue was . . . gray. Gray. Was my coffee trying to match my suit? Does the fat free half and half mixed with coffee react with Styrofoam? Did something die down there? What’s going on here?

Of course, I didn’t let that stop me from getting more coffee (in the same cup) (I rinsed it out first, though).

Well I'm not doing THAT again

took the
today . . .

Now I'm all warm.

Monday, June 20, 2005

How long does getting thin take?

According to Christopher Robin, it takes about a week, if you don’t eat. That’s not going to happen, apparently, given my caloric intake this weekend. I was going to take the stairs this morning as penance, but I was running late, and it seemed like bad manners to arrive at work late and gasping for breath. The last time I took the stairs—the only time I have taken the stairs—I had to stop at both the third and fifth floor landings and catch my breath. That second stop, I thought I’d just have to work from the stairwell that day. That’s how out of shape I am.

I really do want to take the stairs, though, and not just to get some much-needed exercise. The courtesy officers who work in the lobby are very nice and very friendly, but I’m on the shy side, so the polite small talk they make is something I’d rather avoid. Conversations of that type are almost physically painful. Every day the stairs look more and more appealing to me. It may sound rude, but it’s not meant to be. This is a person who stands inside her front door and listens to make sure her neighbors aren’t outside so that she can dash to her car in the mornings without having to make polite chit-chat. It’s not that I don’t like people, it’s that I’m intensely uncomfortable making conversation with them. Maybe it’s because it’s always the same conversation. How are you, did you have a good weekend, that’s some weather we’re having. Or maybe it’s because I don’t know how to extricate myself from conversations, which means I’m basically trapped until they decide to be merciful and release me. I mean, if I knew a polite way to say “ok, this is conversation absolutely must end now,” so that the other person didn’t get his feelings hurt, then maybe I wouldn’t be hiding in my apartment and peering out the windows like a fugitive. It’s different with my friends, because they’re used to me abruptly transitioning myself right out of the room. Life was so much easier when I didn’t care if I hurt people’s feelings. Maybe I should become one of those people who tell others things about themselves “for their own good.” You know, “I hate to say this, Bob, but this conversation is boring me. Perhaps you should brush up on your conversation skills. Now, don’t get angry, I’m telling you this for your own good.” People wouldn’t like me very much, but it could be fun, and it would make ending conversations easier. Also, many people would probably avoid talking to me in the first place. Hmm. I’ll give it some thought.

Friday, June 17, 2005

You can lead a girl to the sportswear section, but you can't make her jog

I have a diet buddy now, and I’m not happy about it. I was happy at the time, but now, like all addicts, I’m resenting the fact that someone is going to keep tabs on me. I’m being pretty irrational about it. That’s probably a good sign that I need a diet buddy, but whatever. Here’s what happened. I’ve been trying to eat better, ever since I noticed last year that I can’t fit into most of my clothes, and one day it occurred to me that I couldn’t remember the last time I’d gone a day without eating some kind of junk food. Being smart, I made the connection between those two thoughts. So I figured out that I had a problem, and as G.I. Joe says, “knowing is half the battle.” What a load of you-know-what THAT turned out to be. I KNOW I have bad eating habits, and I KNOW that’s why I have no energy and can’t fit into my clothes, and I KNOW I’m still having fried chicken for dinner tonight.

My sister and I were going to be diet buddies, but that didn’t work out. We quickly realized that neither of us felt bad about indulging if we could get the other one to crack first. So it became one of those situations involving shifty side-ways glances and conversations designed to imply, “hey, if you want to stop at Krispy Kreme, I won’t think badly of you,” each of us secretly eyeing the other to see if she was about to cave. So the other night, after going for a jog (good, I suppose, except that I was miserable the whole time, doused in DEET but still SURE that I was being eaten alive--why, why, WHY did we stop spraying with DDT?) and then eating half a bag of Reese’s peanut butter cups (very, very bad), I realized that I really, really, really have to stop doing that, and I won’t do it unless somebody makes me.

So yesterday, Jes said she’d be my diet buddy. And I was going to the cookie place today to pick up some muffins (for someone else! Not for me!), so I told Jes I was NOT going to buy any cookies while I was there, and she said she’d ask me later if I had. So I couldn’t buy any. Now I’m getting all snarly about it. I mean, I’m thinking about those magic cookies, and I’m going to keep thinking about them all day. They go so well with coffee. Every time I take a sip of my coffee, I’ll be thinking ‘I could be eating a cookie right now,’ which is a lie, because I’d have eaten all the cookies (how ever many I’d bought) on the way to work, so I wouldn’t have had any to go with my coffee in any case. But still. Stupid diet.

But you can't make me exercise! I'm not going outside! West Nile, people!

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Not to be unctuous or anything

My dad just sent me this e-mail--his attempt to use as many Merriam-Webster words-of-the-day at one time:

"i am thinking of writing an epigram about how my plans to live a faineant life have been ruined by marplots. on top of that i ordered a " ne plus" and they sent me a " ne plus utra". i am so wobegone"

My dad is so cool. Would your dad try to use as many words-of-the-day as he could? Would your dad go through phases where everything he said to you had to rhyme? Would your dad rename things based on their backwards spelling (sugar is still raguse in our house)?

Then again, maybe I just think he's funny because I'm just like him in that respect.

How do you say "pervert" in Spanish?

Ok, so yesterday morning, I was getting dressed, and I was just about to take off my pajama shirt, when I happened to look at my window. Because I have a cat who likes to look out the window and will destroy the blinds in his attempt to do so, I usually keep the blinds pulled up about a foot. So I was able to see that sitting on the grass about five feet from my window was a man, Hispanic looking (I think--I admit I'm not good at playing Spot the Ethnicity at 50 Paces, it never being relevant to me for any purposes other than occassionally for identification purposes like, say, describing to the police the appearance of the pervert sitting outside your window), who was looking into my window. Mm-hmm. I was so surprised that I didn't know what to do. Well, I did go into the bathroom to finish getting dressed. When I came out, I went to the window and lowered the blinds, which I hoped signalled to him that I saw him--as my dad would say, "I see you seeing me."

Naturally I thought this was a one-time deal. But this morning, again, there he was, sitting on the grass, not more than five feet from my window, sitting so that he wasn't facing my window but had his right side to it, and he was leaning over every 30 seconds or so and trying to peer in. I was already in a bad mood because the air conditioning is out in my apartment, so needless to say I didn't sleep well. I didn't know whether to cry, call the police, or go out there with a fork.

It's possible, I suppose, that he's just very interested in the flora/fauna directly outside my window, but since there's not any, I don't think that's it. But I'll tell you what I do think. I think that when I get home today, I'm looking up how to say "Peeping Tom" and "pervert" in Spanish, and I'm getting a some jumper cables and a disposable camera, and tomorrow morning, if he's there, things will be different. You hear me, bucko? I've got your number, buddy!

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

My sister and I have a Soup Bandit raiding our apartment. Someone is breaking into my home and stealing my soup, among other things. I also think he's using my computer and various beauty products. I know people have cute little stories explaining why stuff in their homes go missing, like small people "borrowing" stuff, or whatever, but really they just lost their stuff. But that's not the problem here.

Don't get me wrong, I'm the first to admit that I lose stuff. But I don't lose soup.

About a month ago, as I was studying for finals, I came down with a cold (naturally, it being finals). So I went to the store to get soup. As far as canned soups go, I personally like Healthy Choice soups, but that's just my personal preference. Anyway, the next day I get home from school, and I can't find it. So I called my sister at work, perhaps disproportionately upset, and told her that someone stole my soup. Although she expressed sympathy, she's seemed pretty confident that I only thought I bought soup, and somehow it just didn't make it into the grocery bags. I guess she figured that in my unwell state, I was confused. But she promised me that she'd stop and get some soup for me on her way home from work. Which she did.

The next day, I get home from school, and I can't find the soup that she bought for me. So I called my sister, who assured me that, yes, she did buy soup for me, and it should be in the pantry. But it's wasn't. When she got home from work, she looked for it, and she couldn't find it, either. We never did find it. So you tell me.

I'm sure I'm supposed to be doing something now, but I don't know what that is

I have to wonder how anyone as forgetful as I am will ever get anywhere in life. A minute ago, I got up from my desk to go get water from the vending machine, but by the time I’d gone down the hallway, I had forgotten that’s where I was going and somehow thought I was going to the bathroom, which worked out, because turns out I need to go (I was once told by a friend that I have “low body awareness.”). So then I get back to my desk, realize I’m thirsty, and remember what that not only did I mean to get water on the first trip, but I left my money sitting on the bathroom counter. My boss recently told me that the key to being successful in our field is to be organized and have a good memory. I’m so screwed.

I just got back from lunch with a friend who is dating a guy so secretive that she’s not even sure they’re dating. She said that if she asks him about something he slipped up and told her about, he looks at her (suspiciously, I’m assuming) and says “how did you know about that?”

I once had a neighbor dating a guy that secretive, and she’d occasionally show up at my door and ask me to babysit her daughter while she tried to follow him home. Of course she was a stripper, so I’m thinking the circumstances were different, and maybe he had a reason for being that secretive (like he didn't want his wife to know) but my advice is the same: stay far, far away. But all the same, now I’m really curious, and I’m wondering if this is the right opportunity to hone my skills at tailing a suspect (or rather, find out if I have such skills). I’ve also always wanted to participate in a stake out, so maybe now I have weekend plans.

Actual Last Names (that I'm glad I don't have)


Family Car Costs Arm, Leg

Yet more reason to live some place with a good mass transit system:"According to the Australian Financial Review, getting rid of one car per household could cut 13 years of mortgage payments, allow you to retire 10 years earlier, or give you an extra $400,000 in mortgage purchase ability."


I think it says all you need to know about me that this is one of my favorite websites: