Friday, August 31, 2007
new furniture arrives; life shall now be organized
Oh come on, isn’t that what you always think? “Oh, these pillows will make this futon look less cheap. No? Okay, this poster should tie things together. No? How about this candle?” Eventually you have a house full of crap and the money could have been better spent on higher quality furniture in the first place… and less crap.
So now I have a sofa. A real, live, look-now-I’m-an-adult sofa. Sectional. And a wall unit. Also sectional. I’m excited to be able to keep my tiny collection of CDs and DVDs — here’s the important bit — OUT OF SIGHT. The main area of my living room now looks great. The “back end,” where I’ve temporarily shoved all of the preexisting crap, needs to be bulldozed.
The catch, and I always have a catch, is that I’m deputy-hosting a Labor Day barbecue this weekend, and the living room is far from done. I still need to put together a large chunk of the wall unit, and rearrange the furniture in the “back end” which will now be my office…
and eventually reroute the cable to the other end of the room… and I’m still looking for a new, warmer sleeping bag for the next camping trip and also the ideal Halloween costume because tomorrow is September already and if I’m going to sew something as intricate as I think I might have to, I’d better get cracking, and I’m still missing an awful lot of photography for the catalog I’m currently working on (which needs to release to prepress in only two weeks!) and that one dog at the shelter keeps invading my head but the cats would never forgive me and I keep waiting for my life to calm down and it isn’t happening… ARGH!
Deep breaths. Deeeeeep breaths. And more beer.
EDIT: I forgot the best part! While moving stuff around last night, I finally found my original iPod-to-FireWire cable. Because I suspected that the assorted replacement cables were the culprits all along, I attempted to sync the iPod… and it worked flawlessly! WOO-HOO!
Monday, August 27, 2007
next-to-last camping trip of the season
next-to-last IF we can find a spot in a few weekends… looks like all the campgrounds are already reserved…
Scott summed up the adventure much better than I could have. Read about it here.
the Integra has been compromised
I love my car, and one of the things I love most about my car (right in line behind excellent road feel and mind-easing reliability) is the limited-edition Stealth Gray Pearl paint. Everybody seems to see it differently; M. thought it was silver, T. thought it was black, C. thought it was dark blue. It’s actually, depending on the light, a cool purple-ish gray or a very dusky purple. Just gorgeous. 12 years old and shedding the clearcoat like a fur in summer, but a beautiful color nonetheless.
I took my car to Maaco to get a fresh coat of paint, so I expected sloppy work. Orange peel, overspray, maybe even drips. I asked Maaco Andy about matching the color, and he assured me they’d pull the VIN (the only way to even get touch-up paint for my car is to pull the VIN and order it). I asked about it costing any extra because of the metallic, and he said no. Andy suggested the Presidential paint but I “splurged” for the Supreme. Even though I knew that it wouldn’t effect the skill with which it was applied, it is a better quality of paint and carries a longer warranty.
I picked up the car on Thursday morning (it was supposed to be ready Wednesday afternoon, but they requested that I leave it overnight so it wouldn’t get rained on right away.) I did get the orange peel and overspray, but lucky for me, no drips. They did, however, paint right over visible bits of dust. The real kicker, though, is that they didn’t paint it the right COLOR. And that they were completely unapologetic about it. Maaco Tim said that I should have known that they can’t match a pearl with a single-stage paint. In fact, Maaco Tim said outright that it was my own fault for choosing a cheap paint job. I quote, “You get what you pay for.” (Maaco Andy wasn’t in the office.) It now looks more like, but not exactly, a color that Toyota calls Black Sand Pearl. Kind of a dark-gray-almost-black with bronzey undertones. Nice, but not the color I wanted or asked for. So while I wait for their corporate office to call me back, I have to find out in what county the particular shop that I used is, and prepare to file paperwork for small claims court… I also need to take my car to a competent shop to find out how much it would cost to repair the damage.
Seriously, even my MOTHER noticed. She couldn’t even tell you what KIND of car I drive.
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
Millions of peaches, peaches for free
I dropped off my car on Monday to be repainted, and while waiting for my ride to take me to work I noticed a peach sitting on the parking lot. And another. I guess someone didn’t like their lunch.
Wait, a THIRD peach? What’s going on? I look up and discover that I’m sitting under a peach tree, branches heavy with fruit.
I skipped back inside to talk to The Guys.”Hey, you guys have a PEACH tree out there.”
“Are they any good?”
shrugging nod toward the other guy. I translate this to mean “HE thinks so”
“You should pick them and bring them home!”
complicated nod toward me and the tree outside, which I take to mean “go ahead and take some if you want”
So I did. And I look forward to grabbing some more when I pick up my car. And then grilling them. Or slicing them into some sangria.
Monday, August 20, 2007
too much too much too much
Where to start?
My car is 12 years old. The paint is shot, the seals around the windows are starting to degrade, there’s an untraceable leak in the trunk that makes the car smell funny whenever it’s out in the rain, and the radio antenna is broken. I have, in the past, toyed with the idea of selling it and starting over. I toyed with this idea particularly when I was paying to have a new radiator and new master cylinder put in last summer. My mechanics, who don’t get much business from me but whom I adore, want to be first in line if I sell. Because here’s the thing: the car drives like a dream. Some days I’ll kind of lose myself in the feeling of driving. It’s almost as if it’s on rails, knowing where to go and what to do. And so today, I’m dropping it off for a fresh, new, shiny paint job. I splurged and chose the next-to-top tier, the one with the four-year warranty. Because I’m gonna keep this car a bit longer. Yeah. Woo! And then Saturday, as I’m heading out the door for a barbecue, my stepmom calls. It seems that one of my ‘cousins’ is in a bit of a pickle and suddenly needs a new car. A car that’s reliable, a car that we know the history of, a car that costs maybe about exactly what my car is worth. Like, say, for instance, my car. But… but… I love my car. And it’s about to be all shiny-like. On the other hand, Aliana is family. And I’ve been in her position before. She can’t get a car loan, but I can. Maybe it’s time to pass the torch. (mutters: man, I hate car payments.) The pressure is that she needs a car NOW, and I won’t even have one to drive around in looking for a new-used one because I’m dropping mine off today to get painted. And I have a camping trip this weekend. And next weekend is Labor Day. And then hopefully, the following weekend…
MOM HAS TO GET HER CRAP OUT OF MY HOUSE
Seriously. This has gone on long enough. Way beyond long enough. When she first found her own tiny apartment, she asked if she could leave some stuff here. I said no. She offered to pay a small storage fee. I said no. She moved out, and her crap has remained, in ever-so-slightly dwindling amounts, in my basement ever since. It’s been THREE YEARS. Deadlines have come and gone. I’d donate it all to DAV myself, but it’s mostly boxes of books and magazines, and they are too damn heavy for me to lift. I recently told mom that her stuff had to go by the end of the month because I have agreed to store a smallish amount of stuff for Erin, because I offered and because Erin is paying my broadband bill in exchange for the space. A U-Haul van will cost $20 plus $.59/mile, and labor hired via craigslist seems to be averaging $25/hour with a two-guy, two-hour minimum. But while my mom’s stuff still clutters the basement, Erin’s stuff now clutters my living room. That’s right, my living room. It is stacked into towers so that I may still see the TV through the canyon of Rubbermaid totes. Which makes it all that much more difficult to take delivery of…
NEW LIVING ROOM FURNITURE
I tagged along with Scott yesterday when he needed to pick up some inexpensive black bookshelves for his new apartment. In the process, I picked out a new sectional sofa to replace my futon (yes, I still have a futon as my main living room seating) and a gorgeous, may I say simply gorgeous, entertainment center-slash-wall unit to replace the cheesy-ass craptastic shelving on my living room wall and the coffee table-dragged-from-a-Dumpster that my TV currently sits on. It’s all on sale. The prices are great. The delivery fee is nominal. But before signing on the dotted line, I really need to measure the wall. Which it turns out is about two inches too narrow for the wall unit. Unless I remove the stupid little decorative half-wall by the front door. Which I have thought about before, but removing it means patching the remaining wall (not a big deal) and retiling the entry way. Which involves chipping out the existing entry way tile. And hoping against all hope that the new tile I lay down (I’m thinking slate, ooh drool) doesn’t make the front door stick even more than it currently does. This is kind of a big project just to squeeze in a $400 wall unit. Oh, and one more thing… the wall unit is built for people who have TVs that aren’t 20 years old, and have a considerably narrower profile. So while I could make the wall unit work with the TV I have, I would have to pull the whole thing 5 or 6 inches away from the wall to do it. Which Scott pointed out I might have to do anyway, in order to have access to the cords and plugs. Hmm. Mandy also pointed out that I could order the wall unit, which disassembles into sections for easier moving, and only put two of the sections up until I get the wall/entryway taken care of. So, you know, I don’t lose out on the sale. Because the new wall unit will look fabulous with the new sectional.So yeah, I’m stressy right now. Megan is very kindly driving me to/from work this week while the car is being sanded/sprayed/baked, but I hate hate hate favors. I don’t know where I got this raging independent streak, but I wouldn’t mind shaking some of it. It actually feels kind of nice when I let people help me out.
My grandma’s 90th birthday is in October, so the family is all getting together in NJ for dinner that weekend. Whee! I haven’t seen my grandma in way too long, and she is one of my favoritist peeps. Here’s the WTF part: okay, I’m flying out on Frontier. $347 round trip from Denver to Philadelphia. My dad and Marci are also flying out, from Albuquerque to Philadelphia, which means they have to change planes in Denver. They manage to get on my same flights, so we can all travel together. Super-whee! Except that their tickets are only $299. I called Frontier to ask WTF? They explained that D+M’s tix are cheaper, because they’re being inconvenienced by a plane change. So, can I book my ticket out of ABQ and just get on in DEN instead? No, of course not. When I don’t board in ABQ, my ticket will be cancelled. Oh well, I tried.With all this rampant consumerism, I still haven’t earned enough AmEx miles with which to do anything outrageous. Yet…
Thursday, August 16, 2007
The past few nights, I’ve been going out back to listen to the crickets for a few minutes before I go to bed. Sort of a winding-down thing. Our daily dose of rain yesterday occurred later in the day than usual, however, and the crickets were busy toweling themselves off and generally keeping to themselves. Rocket was outside with me, as she always is, but she was uncharacteristically staring at the ground instead of out into space… I crouched down next to her on the edge of the cement patio and tried to see, in the dark, what she was looking at so intently.
Could it be nothing? I looked harder. What was that sound? A mouse? No, the sound was too quiet. Was it water still dripping off the tree branches overhead? No. Not quite right. Wait, was that fallen leaf moving? And that one? Was it the sound of the bark mulch settling under the weight of nearly three weeks of rain? That couldn’t be it.
Frustrated, I went back inside to snap on the light. I rejoined Rocket on the patio and looked again.
Nope, still nothing.
Wait… those leaves ARE moving. Keep looking. Adjust to the light. Look harder. Look smaller. Look… at all of the WORMS! Big, fat, shiny, looooooong worms. Sliding, moving, poking, worming. I watched them for nearly 15 minutes.
And my next fishing attempt is more than a week away.
Monday, August 13, 2007
Just a brief note to say that I just watched The Departed with Dave and Jessi and that it was AMAZING. I recoiled in horror a number of times, but the explosive blood (and occasional smattering of brain tissue) was all integral to the plot. Besides, the banter between ANYBODY and Dignam was worth it.
Sullivan: The day you wouldn’t take a promotion, let me know. And if you’d taken care of this, I wouldn’t even be here.
Dignam: Fuck yourself, you piece of shit.
Sullivan: And I need the identities of your undercovers.
Dignam: Blow me. Not literally, though, unfortunately there’s no promotion involved.
Red, red wine
Red red wine you make me feel so fine
You keep me rocking all of the time
Red red wine you make me feel so grand
I feel a million dollars when you’re just in my hand
Scott is back from his snowboarding trip to Chile, and he brought with him Chilean chocolates and more importantly, Chilean wine. Damn, that’s good stuff. I don’t know anything about wine, but I know it was tasty and perhaps a little too easy to drink and the 2″ thick grass-fed NY strips we grilled didn’t seem to absorb anything at all. Although I think they may have been yummy. By the end of the night I was putting the salt shaker in the freezer but the leftover steak thankfully made it into the fridge. I have no recollection of putting it there, maybe Scott did that for me… I vaguely recall him teasing me for finishing the bottle… anyway, it’s good to have him back around. And I hope we can find that wine locally.
The nice plastic tote that I bought for camping wound up back at the store… I didn’t like the flimsy handles and it wasn’t the most efficient size anyway. I’ll keep looking, seeing as the next camping adventure isn’t until the end of the month.
Ah, the end of the month. Also the (most recent) deadline I’ve given to my mother to have her crap OUT of my basement. And to her credit, she has made more of an effort to get stuff out… but it’s still slow going. With the stupid thumb immobilizer on, I wasn’t really able to help her this weekend. For which I actually do feel bad, because I know that I would want help if it were me.
I have a couple of quotes for getting the car painted, and need to pit one against the other to see if they’ll price match. I’d much rather pay $600 than $700, though I do realize that it’s a very cheap paint job either way. In every sense of the word.
More public apologies, this time to Jason, for being off on his birthday by an entire MONTH. He’s being quite gracious about it, but Jason is one of my oldest friends and my spacing out is unacceptable to me. Damn, and I knew he was a Leo…
Wow, Jason, we go back nearly 18 years. Does that make YOU feel as old as it makes ME feel? And do you remember how we met? Because I don’t. I do remember that you lived on the 10th floor of Willoughby, and I loved your ceiling fly. I am still amazed by you on a daily basis.
Friday, August 10, 2007
Incredibly brief version of what was to have been a longer post
I’ve been promising this to Drew for too many days, and I keep doing other things instead. Such as running out to buy a nice plastic tote for my camping gear, to replace the humble cardboard box which will only take so many beatings. My apologies, Drew.
Also, I owe Drew one or two personal messages. I’ll get on that tomorrow, methinks. Again, public apology.
Back to basics:
Lindsey is the toughest chick I know.
I finally bought myself my very own bowling ball on Monday. On Tuesday, torqued my hip during practice. On Wednesday, got a deep tissue massage because I insisted on bowling in my league that night. Finally took a Vicodin to get past it. It was actually that bad. I mean, the whole reason I even HAVE bottles of painkillers is because I always get the Rx filled JUST IN CASE, but prefer to grit my teeth and bear whatever surgery/injury I’ve just sustained. I simply couldn’t grit my teeth hard enough this time. (No, I still haven’t seen my doctor about my sprained/strained thumb. There’s nothing she can do about it anyway.)
My office team has moved into our new digs in another building, far far away from the rest of corporate civilization. Or, you know, maybe a quarter of a mile up the road. :D Space constraints mean Andrea was left behind in the old building, which isn’t cool, but I guess we’ll have to adjust.
Today is “Uncle” Tim’s and Cute Chad’s birthdays. Happy birthday, Tim and Chad. I’ll see Tim tonight, but unless Chad’s “big news” (you left me hanging there) is that he’s moving back to Colo. tonight, I won’t be seeing him. Virtual hug, sweetie.
Okay, officially late for my little commute. More to come, nothing consequential. :)
Sunday, August 05, 2007
the magic of being a woman
G: Ugh, I can’t wait for these [birth control] pills to be out of my system
E: Do they make you sick? They make me nauseous.
G: No, it’s the headaches and the mood swings.
E: I’ve always had mood swings.
G: Well, I have mood swings, but this seems to accentuate them.
E: I think we all have mood swings. It’s part of the magic of being a woman.
Well I woke up Sunday morning
With no way to hold my head, that didn’t hurt
And the beer I had for breakfast wasn’t bad,
So I had one more for dessert.
Then I fumbled in my closet through my clothes
And found my cleanest dirty shirt.
Then I washed my face and combed my hair
And stumbled down the stairs to meet the day.
off to brunch. all i want is a bloody mary. and for this advil to kick in.
Thursday, August 02, 2007
Megan’s a Celebrity!
Megan made it into the documentary Rockabilly514 – well, at least into their movie trailer. Check it out!
She’s just about halfway through, immediately AFTER the burlesque clips.
Currently listening :
By Drag the River
Wednesday, August 01, 2007
Rebecca*, on Differing Opinions
“My life would be easier without Eric*, but much less interesting.”
Made me laugh out loud, and has been echoing in my head for about a week.
*Names changed to protect the innocent/unknowing