Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Fucking Pigs

Wu Tang
The Wu Tang Clan weirdly featured in my life recently. It seemed like it was just always there. I randomly fell into a conversation with my new boss about them, the first person in OH who knew who they were (and by "in Ohio" I mean the first person since moving to Ohio and works with me that knows them - dude is actually in Oklahoma). Then I was driving down the street and saw a kid wearing a Wu Tang Clan t-shirt. Then a blogger I follow mentioned the Wu Tang. I commented twice but they eventually got erased (he probably thought I was a troll). Wait, no, my comments are back so he knows I'm not a troll. I'm just some weird chick who really likes the Wu Tang. They were, after all, part of the first concert I ever attended (they opened for Rage Against the Machine... I know, right, bad ass for a first concert). Still, after years of no one knowing the Wu Tang, they featured heavily in my life recently.

Summit Submit
Broad Summit was another success. Actually, it was interesting. We had to meet a bit early because two members had Bible Study. About 90 minutes before hand, I met with, uhm, what the fuck do I call her? I'm so bad with pseudonyms but I think I call her Wonder Woman (the chick who helped me move) Anyway, she and I chatted/vented for about 30 minutes outside of work and it was really awesome. Then we all met up, had a bunch of beers and terrible for us food and bitched about work as usual. The idea that we reschedule future meetings came up because Bible Study is always on a Wednesday but the four of us who do not do Bible Study agreed that no, fuck that. For one, why should four of us reschedule for two people and for two, I sent out the invitations months ago and so if you can't skip study for one night, well, we meet at 5 and if you can only stay for 30 minutes that's fine. We can also have impromptu sessions. BS (heh) is really just so we can meet up, vent, have some non office girl time, let off some steam, and get advice. Wednesdays are perfect. In fact, we usually meet the second Wednesday of each month, right when you want to slit your wrists and just as you are pulling out the razor your calendar alerts you to the meeting. We all have various priorities and we all have to make that judgment call. Come if you can. We'll welcome you.

Medical Stuff
I found out in a weird way that my neurologist is leaving the clinic and going to Yale. My office had a diabetes screening and as I was waiting for my results (all clear), the lady who checked us in and I got talking. Turns out we were diagnosed by the same doc and that we saw the same neuro. She told me he was leaving but that they were going to take care of the patients. I hope so because it was a bitch to get into this clinic.

In more troubling news is our Johan. I'm going on a business trip to the Irving office in a couple of weeks (Hunter and Austen, you'd better not let your wives know) and so will have to board piggy again. They will only board if the animals are up to date on their check ups so I brought him in. Johan has a little growth, a little lump like a pimple, on his back. He didn't let me know that it was there, didn't complain or seem upset; I just noticed it one day when I was petting him. I hoped it would go away but it didn't. The vet told me it wasn't normal but that he didn't know what it was. If it gets bigger, we'll have to have it removed. So I'm to keep an eye on it.

I'm not pleased, having something that isn't normal with Johan. I'm not pleased that the vet couldn't tell me anything about it. But it wasn't his usual doc because she is on maternity leave until August. He didn't seem like he was as thorough as usual doc but then, he did things behind closed doors for the most part so maybe he did all the usual stuff (I know he checked Johan's mouth because he commented on how that was the worst part with pigs and that Johan's teeth are fine). And, to his credit, he did tell me that I should be giving piggy more veggies, 50% of his diet (his diet is mostly hay, a small amount of pellets, and then a piece of bell pepper and a handful of cilantro or parsley a day). So pig and I went to Kroger afterwards (again... we always seem to hit the store after the vet) and I bought carrots. Like many pet owners, I'm more concerned about this than I am about my neurologist issue.*

What if he has to have the mass removed? What do you do for that, anesthesia, surgery, overnights in the hospital? What if they want to do imaging on him? How much am I willing to spend on him?

Hear that? That is the sound of my burrowing my head in the sand in order to ignore the situation. 

Oy
 I am in the shittiest of moods today. I got a letter last night saying I now owe $120 on my bullshit ticket. It's a camera red light thing and the picture shows me turning right on the red where there is no sign saying this is prohibited. I looked up the code, found I was in the right, and then called the mother fuckers who then said it was because my four wheels did not all come to complete stop. Bullshit. I know they did because I know that intersection and at that time of day, it is fucking busy so of course you have to slow to a stop. And there is a mother fucking cop in the picture behind me! I know the cameras are to allow cops to do other stuff but shouldn't the City be a bit embarrassed about that? So bullshit but I'm paying it and including a nasty letter, a copy of the picture, and a copy of the ordinance that says this is bullshit. I'm sure some admin will just charge my credit card and then wipe his or her ass with my carefully thought out and strongly worded letter.

Also, Hunter convinced me to keep my GPS in my glove box. It was stolen last night.

Also, my boss routinely stands me up for meetings and then gives me five minutes to talk about something I have no clue about.
 
Books
And finally, on a better note, books! I really enjoyed Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, so much so that I borrowed Dark Places, her second novel, and read it in a day and a half. Certain things I like about this author before reading anything about her:
  • She seems to always place her stories in the middle west, Kansas and Missouri. I assume that is where she is from since people always say to write what you know but I like when authors base their books in towns that are similar to their home towns. I don't know why that is but I do. I think it's because they give you a better picture of those areas. 
  • She writes women differently than anyone I've ever read before.
  • She's damned good with a twist.

So I finished Dark Places, liked it so much that I reserved Sharp Objects, Flynn's first novel, and looked her up on line (fucking LOVE google). The "about the author" page is charming but, even more enticing, is this little tidbit. I love ballsy, honest broads and Flynn strikes me as being one. I've never heard a woman express this sort of sentiment and so she impressed me. So I highly recommend this author and I like her work a lot; however, that being said, it is a bit disturbing what some people can imagine.

*I called eldest brother about Johan. I called my eldest brother who features so rarely in this blog that he doesn't have a pseudonym. He told me, very cavalierly, that Johan most likely has a tumor, that it is cancer, and that none of his pigs ever had such a growth. And he said it with a nastiness that it made me wonder what I might have done to him. He and his wife have had guinea pigs for years, hence my going to him.  He was all but gleeful with the news. I chalk it up as a lesson in stupidity because what the fuck was I thinking going to him?????

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Dancing Bird of Paradise

Hablamos Burger King
I've been watching Dateline episodes on the internet, much to my great joy. Sure, I've been doing pretty well without television but mainly because I was subscribing to Hulu until recently and hadn't watched my DVDs  a hundred times (which I now have). I recently discovered that you can watch Dateline on the NBC website and so huzzah! I do like true crime, Lester Holt, Dennis Murphy, and Keith Morris (Morrison?). But what is with the Burger King commercial that only plays in Spanish? It's for a barbeque sandwich with sweet potato fries so I'm not really getting the link. Is Dateline's web audience predominately what we like to refer to as 'Latino'? I might not have noticed it if it weren't for the fact that internet 'television' has a habit of playing the same two commercials over and over and over again (when I was watching a marathon of an old BBC series called Teachers, I wanted to stab myself in the eyeballs every time the Greyhound Vodka commercial came on).

Other than the BK commercial en espanol solomente (I have no idea if that is correct), I only have one issue with Dateline. Why is it that they only have programs featuring pretty white women? OK, I did see two in which the women were Brazilian and ... uh, were they both Brazilian? And I'm talking about the murder mystery ones, not the news coverage ones. It's pretty much just pretty white (or light skinned) chicks getting killed or being accused of killing their husbands. I have a feeling it has to do with "socioeconomic" factors or "economic disparity." Which is just a fancy way of saying "people are more interested in learning about murder mysteries that involve the wealthy and white people are the wealthy people. But Typhoid Mary wasn't wealthy. I mean, OK, she didn't exactly murder people but it's still really interesting and she was, essentially, a lunch lady.

Weekend
I finally went back to the gun range recently. Upstairs Kid and I decided to try a new place, one further north, and we really liked it. I'm not really sure what it was. They have outdoor and indoor ranges, it is in a nice area, and it just seemed clean and nice. That and the young guy UK talked to about a specific pistol really knew his shit and wasn't trying to upsell him (UK is, in fact, getting a Bonnie to go with my Clyde [which I own out right as of today, having paid UK the last $75]). And I did my best work with a pistol thus far. My accuracy wasn't fantastic but it was much better for me and I felt more confident. Now that my life is a bit more settled, I'm hoping UK and I can go every other Saturday and so we are going to look into getting a membership at one of the places we've visited. Unfortunately, the place we went today probably won't win out due to price. But! I did get to see a guy wearing a shirt that said "Pavlov Rings My Bell" and that tickled me.

Other weekend fun included the following:
  1. A nice long walk. I think of myself as an extrovert because I'm inappropriate and love to make people laugh. I'm also very social at work. But once the end of my shift hits, I don't want to talk to anybody. That's part of why I don't really do anything on the weekends (well, that and I don't have friends in state who are available/willing to hang out with me... aww). Going with UK to shoot was the most social I'd been in awhile. But I also tend to stay indoors because I read so damned much and don't like the sun. This troubles certain people and I think one very good friend worries about my being cooped up all the time. So I felt a bit embarrassed about my lifestyle and thought "you know, maybe I should take advantage of the nice day we are having." So I took a lovely three or four mile walk (this time on the correct side of the road, the one with the side walks) and really enjoyed myself. 
  2. Watching movies. J and I saw the second Sherlock Holmes movie in the theater and whilst we agreed it was beautifully shot, neither of us thought it was as good as the first. However, I found that I enjoyed it more on the second, third, and fourth viewing*. I also rented Contraband because it was the only thing that tripped my trigger. I'm hoping it gets better on the second viewing.
  3. Helping a Japanese neighbor move a dresser from by the dumpster into his apartment. I was a bit jealous as I'd seen that dresser and wished I could have it but I knew I couldn't move it myself. He'd already salvaged the drawers and I just caught him as he came for the bulk of the piece. So I offered to help him. He informed me that he is the "sushi man" at the Kroger across the street and said he'd bring me sushi tomorrow as a thank you. Whilst I do enjoy sushi, I assured him that was not necessary. After all, I know what it is to have help whilst moving. 
  4. Going for another walk because I'm a masochist. OK, yes, the walks were nice and on the second I found Innis Gardens, which is simply gorgeous, but I keep going during the peak of the heat and my feet hurt like eight bitches in a bitch boat. Sure I brought water with me these last two times but one walk was 90 minutes and the other two hours. In 90+ heat. I remain the smartest person on Earth.
So, all in all, not a bad weekend. 

*I have a tendency to watch the same thing over and over again. Some people understand this but others find it infuriating.

Bits and Bobs
After that lovely weekend I returned to work for a Monday that lasted 10.25 hours. I was weirdly focused though so it wasn't as terrible as it could have been and then I came home to something pretty stellar. OMG but have you seen this? I am in love with this person now.

And: Sally Ride died. I told Hunter, via IM (he was in DC working ungodly hours on some sort of I don't know) and he said "who's that?" My reply? "Sigh... first woman in space. She had cancer." Hunter: "That's too bad. Do you know what kind?" Simply: "Yes. Space cancer.... no, just kidding, pancreatic."* 

Also, remember 50 Shades? Well, a friend of mine reviewed them on Good Reads and it made me want to know what happened in the books, like the actual plot (as far as there is one). So I went on Amazon and found some of the funniest fucking reviews ever. This is the review of the second and here is the third. I loved these reviews because the author enjoyed the books but was totally honest about them. Once again, the reviews of these books is the best thing about them I've found thus far. That and talking to Jilly Bean who just finished the first one because it cracks her up when I say things like "I'd be way more gracious about accepting shit from Christian. Wanna give me a car and a brand new computer? OK, I'll blow you for that." 

Finally: I've decided I'm going to make up an assistant. Whenever I have to contact anyone currently on our panel or anyone in our company with something that I think they will find annoying, I'm going to sign the letter with "Tony Flags, Credentialing Assistant" so that people can be annoyed with 'the boy' and not me. Tony Flags is a name I got from watching an episode of the Graham Norton Show. Antonio Banderas and Chris Martin were guests and Martin was talking about having a boring name. He said he'd looked up and found that banderas is Spanish for 'flags' and so Antonio Banderas is really Tony Flags, a name the actor actually uses at hotels from time to time. Thus, whenever anyone is upset with me, they won't know it and will, instead, be upset with Mr. Flags.

*Oh calm down. I was just annoyed that he didn't know who she was right off that bat and I got all "she's a woman so of course you don't know" which is totally unfair because Hunter isn't some misogynistic idiot. 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Wanna Ride My Pony?

This is lame
I just remembered that the other night I dreamed that I had a paper towel holder. Not the kind attached to the cabinets, like I had at my last place, but the stand alone kind. It apparently came with my new place. I was so stoked. I remembered this dream as I was pulling out a new role of paper towels and it was a real buzz kill.

This is Life
I had an interesting time at work. One moment I felt like I was getting a lot done and the next I felt like I wasn't getting anything taken care of. That's what happens when you know you have a pile of "oh my god" needs on your plate but you are taking care of loose ends to clear the way. I also had moments where I was super confident followed, almost immediately after, with confusion and ridiculousness. I was talking to Suzy about a project that needed Texas physicians and I was all confident and smart and on top of shit. Then one of her colleagues started asking me questions about what I thought was the same project and I was getting frustrated and all "don't you fucking people talk to one another" only to realize, an embarrassingly long time later, that she was talking about something else all together, the only link being Texas. The bipolar roller coaster of my working life. Riding high one minute, in my element, and then crashing down back into my stupidity. Awesome.

I also spent a weird amount of time combing through my archived emails in order to answer one department's question about physician reimbursement and the legal department's question about an original contracted agreement. I do not work for finance, legal, or contracts. But then, I also do not work for marketing but have been involved in all manner of discussions in which they say "Cat, where do you go to find a medical director?" Very few people in my company take the time to figure out what it is that I am actually responsible for. Many, many people decide and assume what I am responsible for and, some how, I am the one who looks pathetic and stupid. It's kind of rad. But I'm looking on the bright side as best I can and here is what I have so far.
  1. New hours. On my old Manager's last day, I decided I wanted to work 7:30 to 4:30 instead of 8-5. I didn't ask *anyone, I just changed it. After all, New Guy isn't that interested in approving my PTO request for August 29 (date of my dissolution court date) or my request to have the correct building access for my badge (made July 1) so I don't think he'd care. 
  2. Ability to actively work with other divisions. Old Manager was antagonistic and refused to allow me to work in a congenial and productive way with other divisions. It was part Napoleon complex and part in-group out-group bias and it affected everyone but him. Now I can help and do my thing and we all benefit in various ways. And really, it's a weird relief. Plus, I get to build on my professionalism. Score!
  3. Working from home. I did this last Wednesday and yesterday and am thinking of asking New Guy if I can do this once a week because I get a ton of shit done on those days and it is the stuff that needs to be done ASAP. He doesn't give me a hard time about it or anything. 
  4. Education. Yes, it drives me crazy that people don't bother to ask what it is I actually do and so assume and make shit up. However, because New Guy is telling people I do more than I actually do, I'm learning new things that will help me out and help me expand my skill set. So yea. 
So yes, I am in a transition phase and it is interesting and frustrating and rewarding and I'm doing my best to take advantage of it. I'm also so grateful because since Old Manager left, I'm way less jumpy and fucked up than I used to be. I still justify everything without anyone asking* but I'm more relaxed and better able to focus. I'm still hoping for the best and expecting the worst but I find that I'm getting way more done and I have way less anxiety. So, really, score.

 *One thing I really like doing that few enjoy is expense reporting. Therefore, I do this for my friends when they ask or when they take me up on my offer. Hunter hates expense reporting and so I offered to take care of it for him. Today I asked him to go in and update his profile in the program we use so that I can get email notifications. "Email notifications are helpful to me because they allow me to know when a charge hits your card." OK, Hunter hates doing expense reports and I'm nice enough to do them. Hunter is also my best friend... why the fuck am I justifying this request?

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Simply a Girl Genius

I've figured out how I'm going to strike it rich and I need some capital so please feel free to email me with your interest (I know you are already pulling out those checkbooks). I am going to buy up land in the central Ohio area, those areas outside of the city, and I'm going to install sidewalks. Then I'm going to put in toll booths and charge people to use them. Brilliant, right? That idea is copyrighted* by the way. Seriously, what the fuck Ohio? Why are there only sidewalks in rich people places and the city proper? Especially in areas where there are places in walking distance of residences? Hell, there aren't even sidewalks in my fucking neighborhood.

I get it, OK? Back in the day when people started being all successful they started wanting to get away from the city with its hustle and bustle and noise and dirtiness and kids being killed constantly by hobos and trains and cars and city buildings. And yes, if pressed, I will admit that I'm anti kids being killed by things. So Mr. and Mrs. Successful moved out to the suburbs to protect little Ethel and Winston and Mommy spent her day in curlers, cleaning and cooking while Daddy went to the big bad city to work and (according to Mad Men) fuck secretaries. And oh wasn't it wonderful!

Only it wasn't. Before long people realized "dude, this sucks, there's nothing to do but start drinking during the day and popping valium and spy on the neighbors." The grownups started wanting things closer so they wouldn't have to always drive to the city for amusement and the kids dreamed of getting the fuck out. And so eventually, some genius decided to start building shopping malls and shit closer to the suburbs to take advantage of these bored folks. And because people previously had nothing to do but have sex and make babies, and since everyone in the city was fucking around, there were a whole bunch more people so the city spread out into the suburbs. The end.**

And so now we have stores and shit within walking distance of residences but we don't have sidewalks. No wonder this country is so fucking fat. And I know that it takes time but come on, how long has it been? But no matter. This was just a long introduction before I tell you that I took a walk this afternoon, a little after work stroll. I was going to take a nap but, restless, decided to get up and go exploring. In the peak of the heat, during rush hour, in an unfamiliar place. Nothing could possibly go wrong!***

Initially I just walked around my neighborhood but that was boring so I decided to see if I could walk up to one of the parks, not really knowing how far away it was other than "somewhere between 1.5 and 3 miles, I think". So off I went, walking out of my neighborhood up to the very busy road and turning right. Did I mention there were no sidewalks? Well, there was one on the other side of the very busy road but not right away and I didn't know it was there and there was no place to cross (I'm not a fan of human Frogger) so I just tramped along. It wasn't terrible all the time. There were many places that, whilst uneven and slopey, were covered in nicely mowed grass. But there were three occasions where there was a guard rail on one side, fake forest on the other, and thorny weeds, trash, and god-only-knows-because-I'm-not-looking to walk through. Those bits sucked. And oh my god the heat. But I persevered like the badass I am (and because I didn't want to feel embarrassed by just abruptly turning around) and was actually rewarded.

I came to a traffic light and thought "oh! I can cross here!" Sike!!! said the world. Nope, no crossing. So I made my best vexed face and silently shook my fist and then noticed a downward slope away from the road. I cautiously approached and then, like Alice, decided to see where it led. I don't know if it's a prairie or a meadow or a crop circle or what, but it is this lovely, large, circle of flat grass, bordered by trees on two sides, the road in the back, and a creek at the front (that is, trees to the north and south, the road to the east, and the creek on to the west). It is the perfect place for a picnic if it isn't private property. I was really startled to find it and to find no one else there. I was also constantly on alert, as I had been the entire walk, because, for some reason, I got it into my head that a deer might attack me. Oh god, I just thought of a worse possibility... what if a possum came at me? Shudder. The funny part about coming up against the creek is that that had been the point of my walk in a way. My apartment complex is supposed to be all up against it but I couldn't find it so I went on my wilderness safari to find it. Also, when I was walking in my neighborhood, I found a few entrances into the woods but I was too scared to go in because of the deer attacks and hobo camps. I'm not shitting you, that's really what I was thinking.

I sat and collected myself for awhile and then I walked home and chugged down two large glasses of water and sat down to type this. Sometimes I think I should have to get a permission slip to leave my apartment and that I should always have a chaperone.

*It took me an embarrassingly long time to figure out how to spell that.
**This story is not necessarily based on "facts" or "research" or "knowledge."
***To my credit, I would like to point out that I was wearing cropped sweatpants, a tank top, sneakers, sunglasses, sunblock, and bug spray. I wasn't totally unprepared. I mean, I could have been wearing sandals, jeans, and a winter coat.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Because I'm Bored

I'm also impatient so some of these may be repeats because I can't be bothered to dig through my blog.

1: I have a gold medal. I took part in Odyssey of the Mind in 8th grade and we ended up going to "worlds". My forte was verbal spontaneous and we won the state of Delaware. We did poorly at worlds and I blame my ineptitude during physical spontaneous, which they made me take part in, for our poor show. But still, I have a gold medal. Holler.

2: I speak weirdly. As we all know, I am unobservant and assume everyone is like me but nope! I once said something to the effect of "s/he is no great shakes" and J insisted that this was not a real saying, that it was just something I picked up from my mother. It wasn't until he read The Wind-up Bird Chronicles, a novel by a Japanese author who used that phrase, that he finally believed me. I swear profusely and recently said to Birdy "Hey Twinkie, how are you!?" My dad called me Twinkie. Birdy said "it reminds me of my stripper days" and I tried to insist that Twinkie was the worst name for a stripper. The next day, coincidentally, Hunter said to me in an IM "I'm kidding, french fry." I decided French Fry would be my stripper name and so Birdy and I will dance at the worst strip club ever.

3: One of my worst habits is saying things like "suck my dick" and "eat my shit". I haven't actually said the latter in years because it drove J crazy. "You are the most vulgar person I've ever known... and I'm from New Castle." But I still say "suck my dick" and get pissed off when people want to bring up the fact that I do not, actually have a dick. After all, if one guy says that to another, he isn't being literal, now is he?

4: Some of my fondest memories take place under my Viking's back porch where Teacher and I had a board of wood, a sheet of metal, and a paint can opener. It was our bat cave.

5: I think my mother and my sister in law would do anything they could to prevent Teacher and I from swapping what we consider "funny stories" because they are embarrassed and uncomfortable when he and I get into it and start laughing the way we do. We shake, make no noise, and look like we are having fits. But I think Teacher and I delight in one another like no other.

6: I commonly forget myself when on the phone with reviewers when they call me after hours and say things like "fuck." They are always gracious about it.

7: My brothers and I all have weak bones. Teacher once did a somersault in a pool and broke his foot. I once broke my arm when I turned to give my best friend, Christa, a dirty look and fell on the curb. Eldest brother broke the same arm something like 7 times. I think I've only broken my arm twice and, possibly, a toe once. Oh, and I broke my head open. But I was two.

8: I've owned the same stuffed cow since I was 3 or 4 and I take great pride in the fact that his yarn smile is still intact.

9: My parents were so certain I'd be a boy because they'd had two boys previously and ultrasounds were not done regularly in 1980. They had the name Vincent all picked out. According to my mother, it took five days to come up with the name they gave me and her father said "well, you can always change it later". I plan on doing that if I ever get divorced.

A little bit of this, a little bit of that

Let's Get Serious for a Moment, Shall We? 
In yet another instance of my being frightfully stupid and absent minded, I had to take Johan to the vet to get his little pig claws trimmed. I say that is evidence of my stupidity because why the hell didn't I have them trim his claws when I had him boarded during the power outage?

One of my favorite bloggers linked to this article, which I spent the morning reading before taking lord and master to the vet. I never really had a firm idea of where I stood on the death penalty. On the one hand, I think pedophiles should be killed by firing squad. I also think locking someone away for the rest of their lives is cruel. But then, how is killing someone considered justice? And quite frankly, who am I to determine who should live and who should die? If I were faced with the choice I think I'd take death over prison. But a) do you ever really know until you are faced with the actual decision? and b) what is good for the goose isn't always necessarily good for the gander. Now, however, after reading that article, I can say with firm conviction that I oppose the death penalty.

See, sometimes it isn't all guinea pigs and bitching about stuff. Sometimes, on some rare occasions, I do actually use my brain.  One last comment on that article; if you read it, you'll notice it is from 2009. Do you ever think about how much information is out there, how much literature, fiction, non-fiction, and just data is out there and how much you never see? Sometimes, when I'm in a book store, I look at all the books in the fiction section and wonder if each one will actually be read. Then I wonder what the sound of one hand clapping is and zone out...

Things Change and Stay the Same
I've always taken that sentiment for granted, just another meaningless cliche. And it is but it's also like "a stitch in time saves nine" and I finally understand it (embarrassingly, I think I was 19 when I finally understood a stitch in time etc.)

So, I have a new boss, which is the change, and it's occurred to me that I don't think he has a clear understanding of what it is I do, which is same old same old. He also keeps promising to get me help and talks about change but nothing happens. He's a good guy and he does actually communicate with me but I feel like he is moving too fast and not understanding that we can't just "make things happen" but that we need to do things like talk to the executives and examine the budget to see if we can make things happen. He's the new head of my division and, unfortunately for us, his primary concern is growing our division so we still don't have anyone who is primarily responsible for helping fix the problems with our existing clients.

So, you see, things change and stay the same.

Finally...
The Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes divorce was settled rather quickly. Am I the only one who is disappointed? That sounds cruel but celebrities make enough money for me to not feel guilty when I enjoy their gossip. I wasn't hoping for acrimony or anything, but I did want some scandal about Scientology and maybe some "is he really Suri's father" allegations. Instead all we get are joint statements about working together to be good parents and reassurances that Scientology had nothing to do with it.

Maybe I'm just bitter because it took them something like two weeks to get divorced and it has been a year since J and I separated and we are still married. Meh, I don't think so. If I was in a big damn hurry I could divorce him pretty quickly. I just can't be bothered.

Well, here's hoping that more will come out about Demi Moore's daughters not talking to her.

Hey, like I said, these people are millionaires. And besides, we all know that half of what is said isn't true (if not way more than half).

PS
Seriously? I just checked my stats and someone came across my blog after searching for "fuck mature anal gym". Wonder what they hoped to find.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Amusement Parks and Water Parks

Is it me?
Here is an "Am I the only one" question. You know how you'll suddenly remember something funny, usually something funny that a friend said, and find yourself laughing out loud? Am I the only one who has this happen whilst in the restroom at work while there are other women in there? That is the worst. I'll remember something hilarious, usually something that has just happened, and find myself starting to giggle out loud, remember where I am, get embarrassed, and try to play it off as a cough. I mean, it is one thing to laugh at my desk whilst remembering J telling me, years ago, about how he found himself at work whistling the Murder, She Wrote theme song, but quite another to start laughing at the term "chunky dunking" while on the toilet (chunky dunking, apparently, is skinny dipping for fat people).

It is Sunday and I've been awake since 4:30 a.m. because my body continues to hate me. I don't blame it, now that I think about it, given the way I treat myself. Here, have some pizza, booze, McDonalds, goldfish crackers, and other crap. Love you! I hate when I'm awake and tired and can't sleep. I don't even have the heat as an excuse. I got up and did some housework, loading the dishwasher, cleaning the disposal, picking up around the living room. Quite domestic considering that I sat for 1.5 hours in a sweltering laundromat yesterday (the poor owner assured everyone who came in that he had a guy working on the AC at that moment; he even gave me a bottle of water for free). But mainly I've been in bed with my Catherine the Great biography. This is a terrific book but I'm shocked at what life was like for the young Catherine. I think about empresses and princesses and imagine a world of luxury. This poor chick was imported from Germany to marry her horrible cousin and, upon marriage, she was watched all the time and cut off from her family. Sure, she lived in luxury, but psychologically, what a nightmare. And her "aunt", the empress Elizabeth, was most likely bipolar given her temperament, generous and loving one moment, flying into a rage the next. And so obsessed with Catherine and Peter's having an heir to the thrown so as to continue the Russian dynasty. Super interesting. I suggest this book absolutely.

In Old Lady News
Because the heat has turned me into someone who only talks about the weather and my pet... I got Johan back and was tickled when I saw him popcorn in his cage last night. To popcorn is to spontaneously jump into the air. Horses and gazelles do it as well but, perhaps because they are so little, guinea pigs will often turn in the air whilst jumping. It means they are really happy and exuberant. Johan doesn't do the full twists like he did when he was a baby, but he still does it from time to time. As he was in his cage at the moment, I was especially happy to know that he felt good. It's like when I hear him purr from his pigloo. It's nice to know that the little bastard is happy. Did I mention what the vet tech said when I picked him up the other day? I'd commented about his being a surly asshole and she said something to the effect of "he was nice and good... for a guinea pig". Who knew that guinea pigs were assholes? 

He's got me incredibly whipped, as we all know. This morning I went to the pet store and talked with a guy who caught me in the small animals section. I was telling him about how I think Johan's pigloo might be a bit too small but the larger size was too big and I don't know for sure if Johan isn't happy with his pigloo and... I seriously stood there obsessing about this thing called a "fun tunnel"*, would Johan like it, would Johan dislike it? I bought the thing, along with vitamin C drops for his water and you know what? He sniffed it and chewed on it a bit but didn't go in it. Maybe tomorrow.

*I know, right? Fun tunnel. Sounds like a euphemism for either the vagina or the anus. Mmm, hey baby, wanna take a ride in my fun tunnel?

Parks
There are certain things about me that I find really weird. Not, you know, special quirky weird, but things that just don't make sense. When a friend on facebook announces she is pregnant with a second or third child do you know what I think? I think "why would you do that? You know your husband is going to leave you so why invest in children?" How fucked up, right? But it is automatic. I just assume that people will always fall out of love and separate and that fathers will bugger off and abandon their children. I know that is wrong, I know it absolutely and I know that it stems from my own life, my father splitting on us when I was six and then dropping out of our lives and, you know, earth, when I was ten. I know that isn't the norm but it is still my instantaneous reaction to news about pregnancy.

The other thing is amusement parks. I used to go, from time to time, to places like Six Flags and whatever that water park was called back in PA or DE. My family would go and my brothers and I loved the water parks. I remember loving the really high slide, even though it gave me (and everyone else) the worst wedgie ever. And the wave pool! Oh my the wave pool. But you know what? I'm surprised they still exist, amusement parks and water parks. Because in my head I guess people no longer want to have fun? I don't know why but for some reason I'm surprised that people still want to go to Six Flags or Disney World/Land. There are two big parks in Ohio that I've heard of, Cedar something and the other has the word King in it, I think. Tickets are expensive but people will pay and they will have a ton of fun and take pictures, etc.

The zoo makes sense to me and I wonder at people who don't want to go to the zoo every day but roller coasters?

Again, I know it doesn't make sense and that my perspective is totally different than most people's but that is what I mean by certain things about me being weird and nonsensical to myself. Don't have more than one kid or your husband will leave you and what do you mean you are taking the family to Six Flags?

Dorney Park and Wild Water Kingdom! That's the water park my mom took us to as kids. It popped into my head last (Wednesday) night and I googled it this morning to see if it was still around. It is and, evidently, it has been around since 1860 when Solomon Dorney created a fish hatchery and resort on his property. I always thought Dorney Park was just a water park, so I'm guessing we never did the amusement portion. Then again, I also assumed it was a national chain but I think, in actuality, it is only in Allentown, PA. So what do I know? 

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Hello there

Hey there, sexy, how are you? You sure feel good, your coolness all wrapped around me.

So yeah, got my power back six days later. My apartment smells like dead food even though I've removed the food, taken out the trash, done the dishes, and scrubbed my fridge and freezer. Still it smells of dead food and assholes. But man does it feel nice.

The last six days have been miserable. I've laid around just sweating without moving, waking multiple times in the night in a full sweat as though sick. Trying my best to lay still and pretend the smells of the dumpsters weren't wafting in with any errant breeze. I live in Columbus, not Texas or Kansas or the Middle East, but man, when you don't have AC it feels like hell. I mean, too hot to SLEEP. I actually sat in the tub yesterday, immersed in cold water, hoping that it would help. It didn't. I lost my lighters so couldn't light candles when it got dark and so just lay in the dark hoping for sleep and making those deals with the world (but the world didn't respond and so I don't have to make good, hah!)

Now I'm home, in my apartment that smells horrible, feeling like a rock star because I have mother fucking electricity. And tomorrow? Tomorrow I get Johan back! My little ball of fur, my little screamy ball of need and impatience. I get him back. The first two days after I boarded him, I still sneaked around on tip toe, afraid he'd be aware of my presence and start yelling at me. After those two days I started missing the hell out of him. I called the vet this morning and they assured me he was fine, eating and drinking and being a happy boy. I'm sure I'll pay for it, my audacity at having boarded him for a few days. But I get him back. And I've missed the little fucker.

I still can't believe that I have power, regardless of the fact that my light is on and I feel the breeze of central air. I just cannot believe my luck. I have power! I can watch dvds, I can surf the internet for hours. I can probably sleep well tonight. I can take a hot shower. My god, how did I get so lucky? But my apartment feels like a well weathered vagrant, heat rising from its skin even though it is enveloped now in cool air. You can almost see the steam coming off of every surface, see my plant (Bea, left to me a few years ago by BFF) panting and contracting, unsure about trusting this turn of fortune.

And the smell, my god the smell! You'd think I had hidden rotting vegetables somewhere. Maybe I do, maybe I missed something. But my nose is ignoring it as my shoulders and cleavage take in the wonder that is central air. In a moment I'll put on a Nero Wolfe episode, or maybe I'll fix my clocks. All I know is that I am going to bask in the glory that is electricity whilst fearing that I'm going to lose it again.

One must never grow to happy.

Melt the world with you

You know what gets old fast? Not having power. We are on day 6 of "Will she spontaneously combust or just melt" and cheese and rice am I over it. Yesterday, the 4th of July, was the worst so far (with meteorologists predicting it to get even worse today through Saturday). It was too hot to do anything but just lay around, alternating between the sofa and the bed, a cold wet pillow case draped across the forehead. I couldn't even cry I was too pathetic and tired and hot. I did mentally shake my fist at the sky whilst silently bartering with the world, though. If I get my power back I swear, I'll be neater/tidier. I'll be more organized. I'll do more for charity. I'll, I'll, I'll. I promised a lot to mother nature and the gods of AEP but nothing doing.

And how irritating is it that when you are going through something, the world news totally ignores you? Every story I read has to do with the Mid Atlantic and their loss of power; nothing about Ohio unless you read the locals. I wonder if the people in the Mid Atlantic only find stories about the Mid West when looking for information on their outage. People are hot, people are angry, let's fuck with the media to really stir the pot! That is how miserable it is just now; my brain is melting into a conspiracy theory candle.

And miserable is how I am. Hunter told me to have a Happy 4th of July on Tuesday and I swear to god, you'd have thought he'd told me to go fuck my mother the way I snapped at him. I charge my laptops and phone at work so that I have some internet when I get home and there was his email, wishing me a happy fourth. I got super pissed and told him to get fucked because he knew I didn't have power and he knew it was hot as balls and he knew life was awful and all the care bears in the world had exploded. Teach that mother fucker to say anything kind to me. "Have a Happy 4th, Simply!" "Get fucked you selfish asshole, Hunter!"

Poor guy. I wonder if I was that bad with J? Granted, this is my first experience living through a sweltering summer without electricity (I found one more item in the fridge to throw out and I am not exaggerating when I say that I almost vomited - twice - from the smell of it) so I'm a bit on edge. Sleep is all but impossible, with multiple wakings throughout the night, soak covered wakings, bringing nothing but a vague depression because seriously-it-is-too-fucking-hot-to-even-sleep-how-is-this-fair?????? So I like to think I wouldn't necessarily have bitten Hunter's head off if not for circumstances. I should have a sign around my neck reading "approach with caution".

Here's hoping the mother fuckers at the electric company get my power up and running soon. I know they aren't mother fuckers and that they are doing their best and working very hard but it is very demoralizing to have EVERYTHING up and running around you and no power in your own home. And if I have power when I get home today, I promise I will be better about recycling.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Everybody Loves a Monday

... by Calvin Klein
Interlocutor: "What do you feel is your calling?"
Me: "Scientologists of the Operating Thetan Level."

I'm obsessed with the TomKat divorce and reading all that I can about it. Normally I'm a glutton for gossip but in a broader sense. I don't know what it is about this particular celebrity couple that makes me suddenly zero in but when I heard they were divorcing, I got really excited. No, I'm not a Cruise fan and I'm not someone who knows much about Holmes and I never followed anything about them other than reading things in magazines. I don't even refer to them as "TomKat" as I did above. But now I'm reading every article (and every article based on an article) about "Why Katie Left!" and "Why Katie's Asking for Sole Custody!" And even though I'm sure there is a non-disclosure agreement in the prenup, I am still hoping for insider info into the weirdo that is Tom Cruise and all that is Scientology*.

I'm also stoked because I think this news will successfully block out the chatter about the Pitt-Jolie engagement/wedding stuff. I like Brad and Angie, don't get me wrong; I just don't care about their seven hundred children (seriously, are they ever photographed by themselves without either each other or at least one child?) or their sultry love affair. Overexposed, I believe, is the word. I also don't care about pregnant celebrities or children of celebrities, in case you were wondering. And Lindsey Lohan. OK, yes, I'll admit that I think she looks fantastic for being 44 but I'm sick of people talking about what a phenomenal actress she is and if it weren't for her personal troubles yadda yadda yadda. She wasn't a young Meryl Streep for crissakes. Oy.



*Go ahead and bash me for that but Scientology is fucking bizarre. And if you've read this blog for any length of time you'll know I'm an atheist (which is fucking bizarre to many people) so no "just because your beliefs are of x faith and ours are of the Hubbard variety blah blah blah...." I don't give a shit, OK? This is my blog not yours so there.

Prospects
The snipped of conversation above actually came about when someone was asking me about what I wanted to do now that things have changed in my company. I'd like to turn what I do into a corporate department so that I can better service all divisions and not just the one I presently work for. That sounds like some bullshit you'd say at a job interview but it's true. What I do has grown to the point that it isn't a one person gig anymore and I think the entire company would be better served if we expanded it.

I'm still anxious and uncertain because now that Manager is gone, I feel my job is even more poorly defined than before. I'm not anxious like falling apart again anxious, just nervous and I hate that I don't have a firm grip on what is expected from me. My new boss is also new and he is only in the office once in awhile. We thought every other week until he made the full transition (his youngest is going to be a senior so he's staying in his state until she graduates). But today we found out he won't be in until the last week of July. Granted, he emails and calls but you know, that isn't exactly the same. Still, I'm hoping this is a good thing for me.

An Update
No power and I took Johan to the vet this morning to board him. A woman I work with has a son who lives in my complex and he got his power back early this morning so I'm hoping I'll get mine soon. The complex emailed a statement that the electric company has said later today or tomorrow but their website still says July 8 so I'm going to just prepare for a few more nights of sweating by the candles and reading compulsively.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Holy Power Outage

Do you remember Hurricane Ike? He hit the Gulf Coast in 2008* and triggered a wind storm in Central Ohio that knocked my power out for a full week. J and I were living close to the university, in the apartment I just vacated, and we dealt with cold showers and no power for seven days. But it was September and the weather was, thankfully, mild. We pulled through and celebrated with hugs and shouts of joy when the power was finally restored.

Fast forward to June 29, 2012 when a violent storm - one deemed worse than a hurricane based on the speed of the winds - ripped through the Midwest and knocked out power for 1million in Ohio alone. Our governor has declared a state of emergency due to the power outage and the fact that we are currently steeped in weather that can only be described as 'hot as balls'. The temperature has been in the 90's with a heat index in the 100's. My area isn't like Kansas, thank fuck, with the 118 actual degrees, but still, it's pretty sweltering. And according to the electric company's website, I won't have power back until July 8 - and that is just an estimate.

So far so good. Johan is OK as the living room isn't too bad yet and I know I can most likely board him if necessary. I just lay on my bed, sweating into the sheets, reading. I finished I Couldn't Love You More by Jillian Medoff in two days and just began Gone Girl last night. And that's all I do. I lay and read because there isn't anything to do. Well, that isn't exactly true. On Saturday I ventured out because Johan was out of hay. After finding a gas station that was actually up and running, I drove all over creation (OK, OK, I just drove down 23 but I did stop at several stores only to find they were closed) and found an open grocery and an open Pet Co. Johan got bedding, veggies, and hay. I got goldfish crackers and beer.

I have internet from time to time but my laptop was on its last legs. So this morning (Sunday) I drove to the office to power up. Only the idiots who gave me my new access card didn't give me the right level of access so I almost didn't get in. Then the cleaning staff arrived to save the day and here I am, on my office computer with my cell phone charging and two laptops plugged in. I'm doing actual work and everything, just to feel like I'm doing something dammit. But I don't know how long I'll stay. I worry about Johan and what I'll do if it he gets too hot. How will I know? I worry about the fact that I'm stupid and I bought two bags of goldfish and one box of fruit roll ups and thought "OK, I'm good". I'm worried because the cleaning people told me that my area would be the last to get taken care of if it was like it was back during the ice storm of 2005 (I thanked them for their pessimism and asked them to cross their fingers for me anyway).

I think worry is the wrong word. Pissy is a better word. I'm pissy because I don't have electricity and "why is my area always the one that has to go the longest without" runs through my head from time to time. Other times, like when I listen to the radio in my car with its lovely fixed AC, I think about how much I don't envy the AEP workers who are taking shit from all sides because "work faster you sons of bitches" and "why the hell are our power lines still above ground you idiots?" And I have to believe they are doing the best they can the fastest they can and it's just my bad luck that I end up in areas that get taken care of later than others; and I remind myself that I'm not in a single home in the middle of a forest but surrounded by individuals and families who are also without power.

It's inconvenient and damned uncomfortable but there are things to remember. I wasn't on the highway when the storm tore through. Neither my car nor my building suffered any damage. I have hot water this time. The weather isn't quite as bad as we thought it was going to be (though it is still, as I said above, hot as balls). Still, I have that little pouty attitude of "it's not fair" because my power is most likely going to be out for over a week this time and I thought I lived in a schmancier area that would be taken care of quickly.

But what can you do? At least my electric bill will be lower next month.

*I had to look it up so I'm pretty sure Ike was in 2008 and I think it hit the Gulf Coast but this is a silly blog by a silly girl and not, you know, hard hitting news.