These Things

Apparently my super power is being able to hear a cat puking from the other room while I am asleep and wearing ear plugs.

I’d like a new super power, please.

The bright side is I am awake early enough to write this post. You’re welcome?

***

The other day on FB I was tagged in this meme where I was given an age and I had to talk about what I was doing then. I inadvertently got 2 ages- 20 and 26. I could not for the life of me remember what the hell I was doing at either age. I knew that at 20 my father had just passed away and I was living at home going to a local community college. But 26? NO CLUE. It basically took five people, six including me, to piece together my life.  (I was living on my own for the first time without a roommate, probably dating the homeless guy. Let’s not talk about it!)

My memory is shot. Can gingko biloba save it?

***

The carpet is pulled back and the pads have been sucked dry. There is a lingering mildew smell. The contractor comes out tomorrow. All parts are crossed that this is not a serious (re: expensive) problem. We googled more information about the problem and it turns out that’s really helpful if you want to increase your freaking out.

The rains are returning today and we are watchful and nervous.

If this can’t get fixed soon and/or it breaks the bank, our holiday housewarming party is going to have to be postponed.

***

I go to my gyno oncologist in 14 days for my first pap post- surgeries. Not that I am counting the days. Not that I am nervous for the results. Not that I am lying about not counting and being nervous.

Will we be cleared to try to get pregnant or will we have to face the harsh reality – that option does not exist for us?

CLIFF HANGER.

***

This Adrienne Rich line is ringing true for me right now: “The moment of change is the only poem.”

Yes.

A List of Annoyances

Things That Are Frustrating Me: A List

I got a letter from a collection agency that stated I had failed to pay a bill from my insurance from 2009. I called them because I had no recollection of receiving said bill. The first time I called the receptionist informed me all the debt collectors were in a meeting and could I call back in an hour. I asked for a voice mail to which she “transferred” me back into the voice mail vortex where in I had to push a bunch of buttons only to be sent back to HER. So I hung up and called back later. When I finally spoke to someone she informed me that I had not paid a bill that had been sent to me three times. “To what address were these bills mailed because I have never received them?” To which she replied with my old address from four years ago. This is the same insurance company I CURRENTLY HAVE and yet they can’t seem to find my current address? I get mail from them! This is asinine. And I don’t want this debt collection to mar the good credit I have been building up since my bankruptcy filing nine years ago.

Now I get to call my insurance company and attempt to get them to remove me from debt collection. I will pay the bill but not the penalties.

*************

I got mail from the California DMV and guess what? They sent back my application for a duplicate title and my check because they state: “Records show your vehicle is being registered out-of-state. That state has to issue your title” BUT GUESS WHAT? When I go to a Washington licensing agency (2x I’ve done this), they claim that their records show that California holds the title which is why I mailed them the forms and have been waiting for a month for a reply. It appears that California and Washington need to work on clarifying their communication. Meanwhile, I am driving around with expired tags hoping on a daily basis that I do not get ticketed.

So I get to call California DMV again and to visit another Washington licensing agency to try to get to the bottom of this. It’s very likely that I will be standing in line at the CA DMV next week when I am on vacation. That is absolutely not how I had planned to relax.

GRRRRRRRR!

*************

I have two kitchen cabinet doors that have broken glass. The landlords want me to use a different company than we usually use because they are cheaper. Which means I have to find time in my insane week to drive them out to White Center (south of where I live by the airport so about 20 minutes each way). The other company came to us which was a far cry more convenient for an apartment manager that has another job. Oh, and, the glass company is only open 8:30-5pm. Very inconvenient.

*************

I am about a month behind on mailing out a save the date letter about a November fundraiser. First, you should know that I hate mailings. I prefer to get an email about something and not waste paper but I am dealing with a constituency of people who are not of my generation and respond to actual letters delivered by a mail carrier. A bunch of things have gotten in the way of it going out on time, some of which were not my fault, but yesterday it was all my fault.

We have this small note paper that is like mini-letterhead- the letter I am sending is being sent on that. After merging the document and testing to be sure it lined up correctly, I hit print and ran to the copier to manually feed the paper from the bypass tray. The mailing is 3,857 pieces. It took two hours of manually feeding it and hogging the office copier to complete it. I even had to snag a co-worker to help me so that I could sit in a two-hour meeting wherein I sat listening to my boss present our fiscal year fundraising plan and I was told I didn’t have to say  anything. Waste of time? I think you know my answer. (Meetings should only be an hour and they are a lot less boring if I am asked to contribute. I digress.)

So I have these letters and am trying to print out an insert that I can then cut and fold plus locating enough envelopes for the entire thing when I realize I should have just sent this damn thing to a mail house as it is WAY too big for me to turn around and get it in the mail within a couple of days. I will have to rope my co-workers into labeling and stuffing. It’s a nightmare. EXCEPT! It gets worse. Because I happened to glance at one of the printed letters and realized it merged with the a previous version of the letter not the most up-to-date one which means I HAVE TO DO IT ALL OVER. It’s one sentence difference but that one sentence implies that the person receiving the letter had attended this event in the past and for half of these folks, that’s not true.

Oh and in between all this a co-worker I really like and admire gave her notice. Thursday is another friend/co-worker’s good-bye party before he moves to Los Angeles. Last week two  different awesome co-workers left the agency and a couple of my closest work pals are looking for new employment. It’s depressing and I am very sad about how the agency is changing and my friends are all leaving.

Add that to the mailing debacle and I was proclaiming that I should just quit. It was one of those days where it just seemed easier.

***********

I haven’t fully pulled myself up by my boot straps today but I am up early and headed into the office to stand at the copier and print 3,857 mini-letters before my fellow employees come in and need the printer.

I have a headache.

I think I want to find a new job.

I need a vacation.

What’s annoying you?

What Facebook Finds

The other day I got a message on Facebook from someone I went to elementary school. It said:

“Hey, didn’t you babysit my brother and I? {Insert their names here.}”

Um, I was in this guy’s class. I AM THE SAME AGE AS HIM.

He was never the brightest bulb. Some things do not improve with age.

* * * *

An old elementary school friend started a page for our Alma Mater. This has proved to be both enlightening and frightening.

Frightening: See above.

Enlightening: My former nemesis that I believed was a fashion designer in New York is actually NOT that at all. And that’s all I will say about that.

Though, I have to admit, a piece of me feels guilty for feeling redeemed by someone else’s mediocrity.

2nd Grade Traumatics

The other day while Kaply and I were driving in the car, she confessed that she has the memory of a peanut. I possess an elephant’s memory which means mine would eat hers as a snack. She can’t remember passwords or the name of her second grade teacher. Me? I totally remember my second grade teacher. Why? Because she put my name on the board.

Picture it: Campbell, CA. The year: 1981. It was quiet hour while Ms. Grover worked with the slow readers in the corner. We were told to work on our projects at our desks and that there was to be no talking. While working on my drawing, I realized I needed a purple crayon. I NEEDED IT. So I went over to another student’s desk and gestured that I wanted to borrow the crayon. I might have whispered “thanks.” (It’s called manners.) I went back to my desk and finished my work. When quiet hour was over, the teacher went to the chalkboard and started writing students names on the board. My name was on the board.

What.

The.

Hell.

I was a good girl. I did what I was told. I followed the rules. I wore my uniform and stood in line without making a fuss. I was not the kind of student who got her name on the board.

Truth be told, I freaked the fuck out.

(Even though back then I thought the word “fuck” was actually “fuff” and when I told my parents they let me know in no uncertain terms that I was never to say that word. See, Mom? I didn’t say “fuff.”)

I raised my hand and asked why my name was on the board. Seeing as how I was pretty shy at 8 years old, this was a bold move on my part. The teacher chided me and said I knew why- I had talked during quiet hour. I was incredulous. I had been just trying to do my work. That purple crayon really added a lot to my project. She brushed off my inquiries and moved on to another subject. I raised my hand again and asked to use the bathroom pass. Once in the hallway, I promptly ran to the school office where my Mom was working, crying my eyes out like someone had just run over my cat Dumbo. (Yes, his name was Dumbo. Shut up. I loved that Dumbo ride at Disneyland and the story.) My Mom tried to calm me down so she could understand what in the hell I was sobbing over. She soothed me as only a mother can and I was able to return, red eyed and pouting, to class.

I am 35 years old and I am still pissed about it. The unfairness of it really gets under my skin. The fact that I can remember the details so vividly and that I still hold a grudge entertains Kaply to no end. I am here for her amusement. And apparently, I do my job well.

Let’s Find the Bright Side

I feel like all I’ve been doing since I moved is whine and complain and bitch and moan and ramble on about annoyances. Granted, there is a lot to discuss where those things are concerned but it’s time for a purposeful change of perspective. Lest I wallow in my own mire and lose sight of the big picture.

Here goes nothing.

  1. I am not broke even though I don’t have a surplus to buy the furniture I need. I still can pay my bills and afford to eat. Maybe even have a cocktail out with friends Friday night.
  2. My apartment, while not put together, is very cute. Imagine what it will be like when it is. (I know you want photos but it’s just not camera ready yet. Hold your horses, will ya?)
  3. My job allows me flexibility to change my schedule with ease. Not every employer would be open to this. It’s a perk.
  4. The tenants I have met have all been welcoming and understanding during this transitional time. And everyone paid their rent before the 5th, sans one.
  5. I’m hanging out with Finn this weekend.
  6. I am getting my hair cut & colored tonight. TONIGHT. All is right with the world.
  7. I rented the unit that had been vacant for two months within the first 5 days of being the Apartment Manager. Hello! Who’s got mad skillz?
  8. I’m going to buy new shoes. Preferably green.
  9. While the last two birth control methods I tried obviously had negative side effects, the good news is there are a bazillion more to try. Libido, don’t lose hope, I’m still searching for you!
  10. My boyfriend loves me. (And my libido, he’s part of the search party.)
  11. The IRS check is being mailed on Friday. I was misinformed about it being en route. Hopefully my new address will have been entered in time so that the check arrives directly to the new apartment. Fingers crossed that I’ll be buying furniture next week.
  12. I’m going to BlogHer this year.

What’s your bright side today?

Self? Where have you gone?

Yesterday was not a good day. I’m burning myself out. I’m “on” too much of the time- at work then at home because home is now work- and I’m just exhausted. I’m so tired my brain can’t tell me the words to basic things. “Can you hand me the thing? The thing there sitting on the other thing.” Their response: “Whatareyoutalkingabout?” Me, trying again, “It’s round and has a hole in the middle near the desk.” Them: “A donut? Oh this cd! Here.”

Last night I fell asleep at 9:30pm and slept until 6:30am. I could sleep more but those 9 hours was a start. At least this morning I don’t feel like hurting anyone or throwing anything. Yesterday, my tolerance for things going wrong or for mistakes or for annoyances was -5. My list of annoyances goes something like this:

  1. I hate my gray hair and am not yet ready to embrace the fact that, if I were to stop dying my hair, I’d have a completely gray head of hair before turning 35. Maybe after I turn 40 but not yet. I’ll fight you to the death, gray hairs! (Hair appointment scheduled for Thursday thankyouhairgods.)
  2. I filed my taxes in early February with a direct deposit set up for my refund. My bank rejected the deposit so the IRS had to cut and mail a paper check. I changed my address with the post office around the exact time the check was being mailed. It’s March 5th and the check has still not arrived. That’s my money to buy furniture. This is leaving me dresser-less and couch-less and very unhappy.
  3. Speaking of mail. . . I sent in my change of address form well in advance of my move and yet my mail? It comes sporadically and piecemeal. And there is no IRS refund check. I am very upset by this current state of affairs.
  4. My new birth control, while not making me mental, has stolen my libido. I want it back!
  5. Living out of boxes is driving me to insanity. I’d be horrible at a vagabond life. I like my things to have their place. I like my home to have order. I like knowing where to find my socks and that one shirt that doesn’t make me feel fat and where my measuring tape is and come to think of it, where are my scissors?
  6. Every year this fundraising event at work bugs me. We have lots of events at work but this one? This one for some reason always irritates me. Communication to me about volunteers is crap and then at the last minute I’m informed of major changes. I really, really dislike being out of the loop particularly when it affects how I do my job.
  7. I’ve had a nagging cough for a week. I’m not sick enough to stay home but just sick enough to feel run down and irritated by the constant tickle in my throat.

I want to be in a better mood. I’m going to try. I hate not feeling like myself.

Reach Out From the Inside

I woke up in a funk. I over-snoozed and after 45 minutes of being awake, I still don’t feel like myself. I was feeling so good all week and now this. Where did this mood come from?

It really bugs me when I can’t figure out the source of my bad mood. I know sometimes you have to just let time sort it out for you. I’ve been trying to embrace the Zen-ness of that but as a control-freak over-thinker, it’s no easy feat. Throw into that mix my impatience with myself and we’ve got a mess up in this mind of mine.

Any of these could be the reason or the combo pack of reasons why I’m all down in the dumper today:

-nostalgia

-stress

-work boredom

-ch-ch-changes on the horizon

-birth control messing with my emotional balance

-lack of exercise

-embarrassment over sharing TMI about my “O” situation in yesterday’s post

-trying to be a girlfriend after years of not being a girlfriend

-feeling disconnected from myself, my heart

-not enough sleep from staying up too late watching old episodes of Grey’s Anatomy

-over-attachment to blogging

-worry about a friend

This too shall pass, as they say. Right?

“Set me free, leave me be. I don’t want to fall another moment into your gravity./Here I am and I stand so tall, just the way I’m supposed to be./But you’re on to me and all over me./You loved me ’cause I’m fragile./When I thought that I was strong./But you touch me for a little while and all my fragile strength is gone. . .” – Gravity, Sara Bareilles

I Dyed A Little

I had to put off getting my hair colored because we didn’t have the right kind of gray coverage dye meaning I would end up with two-tone roots. That would just not do. As Streets was drying my hair after cutting it she said, “Let me try something.” Abald spray bit worried, I let her spray this hair powder onto my roots. And you know what? It covered up the gray! I felt like I was on one of those hair club for men commercials though but seriously, it would do in a pinch while I waited for Monday and my actual dye job.

I had an interview on Sunday. (Hold your horses, more on that another day.) I sprayed some of the hair powder on my roots before I left hoping that it’d effectively cover the gray and my interviewers would be none the wiser. As I sat across the table from them sipping my latte, I had the distinct feeling that one of them, the woman of the duo, was staring at my hair line every time she looked at me. Every. Time. Of course, I became paranoid.

Throughout the hour I spent talking to them, it kept happening. I started to sit up straighter and tilt my head back and to the side thinking maybe that would keep her from seeing the top of my head. I probably just looked odd, like I was posing. I tried distracting her with witty asides thinking that if I kept her engaged and laughing, she would forget to stare at my roots. Yeah, that’s the ticket. Um, no. That didn’t work. She’d look me in the eye for a spell but then her eyes would inevitably dart up to my hair line.

Shit. Shit. Shit. Did I do a shoddy job? Are there noticeable speckles of brunette hair powder on my forehead? Is she a Hair Nazi? (Her hair was very well coiffed with a good dye job.) At the end of our meeting, we shook hands and exchanged pleasantries all around and I made my way back to my apartment.

I walked in and said to Jenny Two Times, “Can you tell I sprayed that stuff on my hair? Does it look noticeable?” Granted, the lighting in my apartment is pretty craptastic but she claimed that, no, it looked fine. Then Dokey showed up so of course I asked her too. She agreed, you couldn’t tell. Then what the hell?

In Junior High I had a classmate who would stare at my eyebrows when she would talk to me. It would unnerve me. I finally blurted out once, “Is there something wrong with my eyebrows!?” She seemed taken aback and claimed that they were fine. (They were.) Then why did she do that? When someone is staring at one part of your face like that it is unsettling. Like, do I have a huge booger hanging out of my nose or sleepy eye gunk in my eye or a zit that’s looks like it is about to burst? WHAT?! Stop staring at me! Aack!

There’s eye contact and then there’s. . . that.

*********

Swivet: a state of extreme agitation.

I was practically in a swivet after the Hair Nazi Inquisition. 

Calling the Hair Crisis Line. . .Hello?

long hair I desperately need a hair cut and color.

I know.

I know! I say this all the time. I’m hair obsessed. But this time is (slightly) different because I have been purposely putting off scheduling a cut and publicly shaming myself with grown out gray roots and a disheveled mop of hair. Such is the torture called growing ones hair out.purple hat

And what’s a girl’s best friend in these situations? Hats!

Things are getting desperate in Sizzleland. Why hasn’t my hair stylist called me back? So what if she just turned 30 and was probably partying in Vegas- I need her! (No seriously I’m kidding. She should really (hurry up) have a good time and call me (immediately) when she gets back. Streets? You hear me?! I need you!)

beanieLook at me. I’m clearly in pain.

I’m done growing my hair out. It blows and I can’t take the pressure. Besides, I’m not a long haired kind of girl. I’ve done that. Why do I keep saying I want to grow it out? Sizzle! Listen! You’re a short haired kind of gal. Embrace the short haired sassiness.

I’m ready to rock the short ‘do again.

Bring it.

“Rain happens into my room at night,/when there is so much time to miss you./Beautiful changes I’ve seen sometimes,/the clouds changing into reindeer and flying/to places clear of sorrow./Walking around./You know I’ve had enough of this trouble/following me high and low. Now it can go. . .”Walking Around, The Innocence Mission

I Feel So Funky

It’s 6:20 AM and I’m trying to get in a few more minutes of shut eye before thdashe snooze goes off. Dashiel hops up on the bed up near my pillow to purr like a motor and rub his face on mine. This is his morning ritual. He has no respect for snoozing between alarms, no appreciation for staying warm under the covers. All he cares about is getting his wet food.

I’m scratching his face, still somewhat asleep, trying to placate him so I can stay in bed just a few moments more. He walks onto my chest, standing on all fours and puts his butt in my face. I reached out to his hind legs simultaneously thinking to gently push him off me and also singing in my head “pantalones, pantalooooones, panTalones” because: a) I’m a weirdo and b) whenever I see his hind legs I think that to myself (Dumpling’s the one who pointed out that Dash looks as though he’s wearing pantalones or, what some might say look like “Hammer Pants” but I just took it to an extreme in my own head, as per my usual).

As I’m singsonging “pantalones” in my head and pushing on his hind legs, something warm squirts out on me. ON MY FACE! Something warm from Dashiel’s backside is on my face. Ewwwwww! I leaped out of bed, ran to the bathroom and proceeded to scrub my face and scour my hands like I was a doctor preparing for surgery. I could still smell the muskiness of it. Gag! I went back to my room to pull off my sheet and pillow case where there were wet spots from his spray and then, because I was sure I could still smell it in my hair, I jumped in the shower to wash my hair (twice) and my face, again.

I’m very sensitive to smell. And easily grossed out, apparently. That wasn’t exactly the kind of wake up I prefer. For the record: Dash’s new nickname is ‘Squirts.”

Oh! And later today I get to go to court to fight a speeding ticket. I’ve never done that and I’m a bit nervous, truth be told. But at least I won’t smell like cat spray when I address the Judge.

I’m ready for Friday, people. Sincerely.

(Tomorrow is Reveal Your Blog Crush Day! And yes, if you can’t just pick one, go ahead and make a harem out of it. Don’t forget to write your posts!)

“Every rain makes its way into somebody’s song/As a way to relieve the pain/This one is calling me out of my shelter/To face the truth/But I still love/Searching for my intuition/Even though I recognize/Myself in all these silver walls/But as I star they all break me down. . . ” -Still Love, Holly Brook