Tuesday, June 26, 2007

wedding bells

The Hater and I had really good intentions to sleep well last night, but it just didn't turn out. After a short day at work (for me), we're going to drive through the night to the LBG for Sister's wedding festivities.

Let the games begin! My spray tan is ready to par-tay.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

whistle while you work

It just dawned on me yesterday that Sister’s wedding is next week. I knew that it was soon, but I did not realize that we’d be leaving in 5 days…

There were things I wanted to do before the trip. Grandmothers are demanding pictures of the house (cluttered in boxes and plastic bubbles). We had taken the video camera and shot a couple of minutes each week we went to see the house – that way you could see it being built. I was going to edit it on the Mac and burn it to a DVD so that we could take that home, too, for the expected and mandated show and tell. I have work to do to get it finished in time.

The Hater gets back to town today. He’s been gone since Sunday morning. He is only going to be slightly impressed with the boxes I have unpacked since he’s been in Wichita. Mostly it feels like things are unpacked only to be located to a stack somewhere. Nevertheless, some stuff has been relocated and some boxes have been flattened. It’s slow, but there has been progress.

We’ve been in the house for a little over a week. Initially my main concern was locating scrubs, socks and underwear. I had pajamas and a tee shirt to wear around the house – my most basic bases were covered so that I didn’t have to go to work nekkid. Now the problem is that I’ve not been unpacking anything in the bedroom or closet… I know where my outfit and shoes are to take to wear to Sister’s wedding, but other than that, I have no idea where my clothes are located. We’ll definitely need to locate clothes before we journey home for the festivities.

In short, we have a boatload of work to do without much time to finish. We also have not begged anyone to feed the cat and water the grass while we’re gone. Not only have we not done we need to do, we’ve also not done what we’re going to have to do.

Someday we'll have our ducks in a row again. But for now please don't ask me where the ducks are packed. Ask the cat; she's more likely to know.

Monday, June 18, 2007

in print

Did I mention that I was asked to be on the review board for a national nursing journal?

I received the new edition today and saw that my name is listed with the editorial staff. I know it’s silly, but in my world this is hella exciting.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

making the house a home

I had such great intentions to post an update before we started moving, but things did not work out that way. This is the perfect preamble...

All weekend we were super packers. The apartment was in mass disarray, and each day the cat became more and more skittish. Neither The Hater nor I were sleeping well and the Moving Monster continued to loom overhead, despite how productive we were.

Sunday night we invited ourselves to a friend’s house for dinner. We had wondered if we really should go over, and we had no idea how much we needed to get out of our apartment until we sat down in a living room without boxes and had a place to put up our feet. It was a fantastic visit.

We had our final final walk-through Monday before we closed. After the mountain of paperwork was signed and we were given about twenty keys to the house, we proceeded to make around five trips back and forth from the apartment to the house. We didn’t get to bed until after 2am.

Meanwhile, on Monday the cable/internet/phone people turned off our services one day before we asked them to do so (alas, no goodbye post). Also, some friends were traveling through Oklahoma City and we were able to visit and have dinner with them and their sweet son (although the timing stinks all the way around and we would have really liked to have visited more!).

I was so glad to be able to come to work yesterday so that I did not have to be there when the movers came. The Hater directed them brilliantly, and now the mess that was the apartment is now the mess in the house. After work we went to get Zoloft, who was not excited about the empty apartment.

You really cannot console a cat in a carrier. If you talk to her or try to pet her, she just gets more agitated that she is inside the carrier and not outside the carrier. If you let her outside of the carrier (which we pulled into a parking lot to try) she continues to cry and wiggle and carry on. So we ended up just driving with her in the carrier in the back seat, howling and crying and setting the stage for an even more pitiful welcome home party.

We brought her in and carried her back to the bathroom where her litter and food are now located. She immediately hid inside of her litter box, which was good because we wanted her to know where it was—but at the same time we did not want her to just sit in there with her poo, either. We pulled her out of the litter box and she immediately ran and hid behind the toilet. We sat in the bathroom for a few minutes, talking and petting her before we left to attend to the boxes and eat supper. Several times during the evening we went back to check on her and talk to her, but she continued to hide behind the toilet, voicing her protest to change by pitiful wails.

We opened the door from the bathroom to the bedroom to encourage her to explore. She liked that we had moved her monstrous play house into the bedroom, but everything was still scary and she retreated to behind the toilet.

I opened the door from the bedroom to the living room so that she could see out, which seemed like a good idea at the time. She cried and I consoled her. I showed her that we had also moved the reclining love seat that she likes to sleep on. She cried from the bedroom door. I picked her up and put her on the couch, which she smelled, but was overwhelmed by the big room and everything else. She eyed the bedroom and I really thought she was going to run back to her house (or the toilet). She jumped off of the couch, did a 180, and for the first time climbed between the back of the couch and the material, wailing.

At this point I realized that we brought her out of the bathroom too quickly. It took The Hater and me about ten minutes to get her from behind the seat. I took her back to the bathroom, her safe room, and she went straight for the toilet. We will not be planning any other field trips outside of the bedroom for several days. Hindsight is 20/20.

Meanwhile we had to fix the garage door. It was not a major issue, but it did require balancing on a folding chair and holding my tongue just right to get it working again. Afterwards we congratulated each other on our first handy-dandy-home-owner-fix-it project.

We celebrated too soon.

Our dryer has a three-prong plug. The wall has a four-prong outlet for a plug. We went to one of the local building supply stores and asked them how to make the dryer work. They gave us a four-prong plug. The Hater asked if there was any other plug that it could be instead, and they said NO… An hour later (and after only one phone call to Sister’s fiancĂ©, the electrician, regarding the rogue green wire) The Hater has the wrenches and screw drivers back in their holders, the dryer vent attached, and he realizes, much to his chagrin, that the four-prong plug that is now attached to the dryer does NOT match the four-prong outlet.

Expletive. Phone call. Expletive. Phone call. Expletive. Despite my attempts to illustrate that this will all be funny in a month, The Hater was beyond grossed out. We did not call Sister’s fiancĂ© to report the status of the dryer, although I am sure that it has been perfectly connected. One of the builders will come by the house today to tell The Hater what kind of four-prong plug we need instead of the four-prong plug we have now.

We were up until midnight last night, but have successfully moved boxes around so that the people who bring furniture today will have a place to put it. We lined all of the cabinets and shelves (and magically came out even with the paper). We did the rain dance so that we would get a rain shower during the night.

We went to bed with the bathroom door open to the bedroom so that Zoloft might venture into the bedroom if she found her bravery. She poked around all night, and this morning she was not hiding behind the toilet. Her cries were more telling than frantic, which we took as a good sign.

We are so ready to be finished with boxes and moving. It may be a month or so before we get cable/phone/internet capabilities at home, so my posting may not be consistent for a while longer. I will make a list of more exciting moving stories to tell later.

We are armed Allen wrenches and we are ready for war. If all else fails, we will be hiding behind the toilet.

Friday, June 08, 2007

picture of fairness

Box of soggy kleenex: $3
Fuzzy gray sweatshirt: $35
Seeing the spoilled heiress go back to jail: Priceless

If I had been the idiot driving drunk after my license had been taken away, I would have been sent to jail. Not fru-fru jail, either -- real jail. If I had gone on a hunger strike while in jail, they would have jabbed me with a feeding tube up my nose until I was strong enough to eat on my own. I would have never been sent home on house arrest. If I had hollered and carried on during a hearing, I would have been held in contempt of court.

Why? Because I'm just like everybody else, subject to the same laws and consequences. (Gasp; what a concept!)

I don't know Superior Court Judge Michael T. Sauer from Adam. I have no idea how he has ruled on any other case that he's heard. I don't know his political affiliation, shoe size, or anything about him -- but I do know that tonight he is my one-minute hero. Tonight, Mike, you get a gold star for deontological actions.

Let's just get one thing straight: I am not cruel because I like justice... I am cruel because I can't wait to see her roots after another 40-ish days in jail.

Meanwhile, The Hater went to bed about ten minutes ago and instantly fell asleep. He's so stressed about moving that he's absolutely exhausted. I'm going to wait just a little longer (until the sun goes down) before I zonk, too.

note on the title: pun not intended

Thursday, June 07, 2007

boxes, boxes everywhere...

... and nary a place to sit...

A quick update on our week:

We are still packing. It's not that we really have *that* much stuff in a 2 bedroom apartment... we're just taking our time and slowly being overrun by boxes.

Yesterday was our final walk-through. We put blue tape and green stickers on everything. We'll probably have another walk-though to make sure all the dots have been fixed on Friday. We also hope the hot water heater works on Friday... because it did not yesterday.

The rain stopped long enough for the varnish to dry. They've sodded the yard and planted an Ash tree in the front. They created two small beds in the front and planted some shrubbery. (We were really hot that we had no say in the tree or the landscaping options. I did make enough of an impression that we did not get a Bradford Pear, which was no small victory.)

They were painting the front door yesterday, too. It's going to be a rust color with a hint of orange (no crimson!).

I'm working. The Hater is boxing. Zoloft is finding lots of new places to hide around and inside of boxes.

Earlier this week we ordered 56 knobs for the cabinetry. It'll be a good job for Dad when they come visit!

Oh! I finally found some cute sandals (fancy flip-flops with dangles) to wear with my outfit to Sister's wedding. I also found another pair of flip-flops that I really liked, which is funny because I really don't like flip-flops. I'm officially ready for summer... if only we could remember which box they were in...

Saturday, June 02, 2007

the waiting game

I hate waiting for some things, which I think is only natural... especially in this drive-through, instant gratification, super-sized American society. I wrote a paper about this once, how it really wasn't my fault that I was a product of my environment (or my genetic predisposition, for that matter). Neither of which is exactly chosen by the person most affected during their formative years. Yadda, yadda, yadda. It was a great paper.


I think I should clarify that I really didn't write a lot of great papers. There were plenty of papers which I thought were great, then turned in, only to find out two weeks later that I had grossly overrated their greatness. Mostly, and please feign surprisement when you read this to protect my delicate ego, my papers were painfully average to the discerning eyes of my more-educated professors. But occassionally-- and I do mean that literally-- I would crank out something officially percieved as great.


I lived in dorms the whole time I was in college, which was a special experience all to itself. My roomate and I were always asked by the incoming freshmen to score some alcohol for them, but we were always afraid they'd get stupid drunk and somehow the powers that be in housing would find out that we bought it for them. So we stuck to sneaking in our own booze. Except one time my roomate knew one of the girls who moved into our dorm from her hometown. We bought her alcohol, but mandated that she drink with us in our room so that we could monitor her tipsy-meter.

On one of those nights (not the one where we all tried on each other's lingere) she was worried about writing her first real "college" paper. Between sips of cheap corn whiskey and cheap tequilla that tasted like ash tray, I gave her directions about how to format her paper, where to put citations, whatever. She was drinking Bombay sapphire gin at the time. And would you know that she made a better grade on that paper than any paper I turned in to any of my classes -- using the exact same format that I use. She was so proud and appreciative. I didn't really know how to feel.


I feel like I should interject that we didn't drink much, compared to other college student standards. And when I say "much", I mean both by incident and by amount of alcohol consumed per incident. I would venture to say that none of us (3-4 lightweight girls) never truly got plastered while drinking with each other. We may have decided to drink 4 times a semester (a liberal guess), and never crossed the line between tipsy and stupor. (Except one time one of us did have a little too much; we took some great pictures of her with all of the alcohol bottles that we all had purchased sitting around her, while she was holding up a shot glass. It's a fantastic picture, and I would share it, but I promised never to do so. I'm keeping it for fodder when she runs for political office.)


We thought we were really rebels the first time we snuck alcohol up to our dorm room. On the ride over to the liquor store, incidently in a big hoopdy van, I confessed that I had never really done this (drink for the sake of drinking); that I was sure I would have a low tolerance, but I was ready for the ride. My next red-headded companion confessed that she had drank for the sake of drinking, but she had an "average tolerance". My roomate, and driver, who was older and wiser, (and who had attended more Beater-Waver parties than either the red-head or myself) declared that she had a "high tolerance", and advised us not to try to keep up with her. It was a serious moment in the parking lot of the alcohol store.

My roomate, who boasted of high alcohol tolerance, bought three mini-bottles of pre-mixed Mudslides. Back at our dorm room, she would drink half of one before her face turned red and she declared she should slow down. She finished the one before she went to bed.

The red-head bought a $4 bottle of tequilla that smelled like feet. She, of self-boasted moderate tolerance, did outlast my roomate before going back to her room to sleep.

I bought a bottle of Arbor Mist. There was enough for the red-head and I to have two glasses (dorm plastic tumblers, free when we moved into said dorm). I drank some of the tequilla, too, but didn't get tipsy before my more experienced counterparts declared they had drank too much and needed to go to quit.

Every time we drank together from that point on, I rubbed-in that my roomate had the highest tolerance of the three of us, but would be the first to cry uncle. It was somewhat frustrating to always be the last one standing without a buzz, but it did lend to many wonderful photographic opportunities where I was the safe one behind the camera.

Back to the tech:

My computer in college was a monstrous dinosaur, but it served its purpose. By the end of my formal education its wires in the back were so loose that if you bumped the desk the wrong way, the computer would jiggle and power off. Most of my best work was lost to accidental jiggles. It does not take many times for this to happen (where you lose an hour's work in less than a second) before one learns to save their work after every sentence, as these were the days before automatic draft-saving.

I remember the transition from the floppy donught disk to its smaller (not-floppy) counterpart. And then when the ZIP disk hit the scene (which was even less floppy) I thought we were really moving up in the world of technology. I have all of the disks with my college papers on them in a plastic box (including one ZIP disk). I know there's stuff on there, but I was never really good at labeling the disks to show what was on them. I learned quickly that I needed to always have a blank disk (in it's color-coordinated plastic safety shell) in my backpack at all times -- because you never really know when you would need to visit the computer lab.

The computer lab-- where magic happened on campus. There was a computer lab in my dorm, and there were always people in it. And why would I need to go to the lab if I had a computer in my dorm room? Because my computer functioned as a word processor, played countless hours of Tetris, and allowed me to telnet to check my email (telnet://frank!). It would not run Netscape or IE. If I needed to do any research, I had to visit somewhere that would allow me to use a web browser.


I was very angry when MTSU turned off my email account, about a year after I graduated. It wasn't as big of a deal as I made it out to be, but at the time it really (REALLY) pissed me off. I think I even fired off a letter to alumni relations, suggesting that they NEVER contact me for a donation to the university. (As if I have enough money to spare, but they didn't know that.) Alas, intr0243@frank.mtsu.edu , was no longer.

Back to waiting:

And so I am a product of my fast-paced environment, with quick thoughts and tangents, yet the need to push forward to completion... and I'm not the only one, which brings me no consolation when I'm the one waiting. And so I can't imagine that the fact that we're waiting, too, would bring any other waiting person consolation. It doesn't work that way in this society or our culture.

I think it's cruel to invoke the advice "this, too, shall pass" to someone else who is waiting, because the only thing it has done for me is make me angry at the person who said it. I'm not going to say that your waiting or your situation is happening to make you a better person, because that, too, is a load of kaka. I'm not going to say that time has a way of changing things, like the evolution of species, technology or tolerance, because you don't want to hear any of that when you're the one waiting. I've been the recipient of lots of advice in the last year, most of which only benefited the person who gave it.

Despite all of this, I wanted to make an effort to recognize your uncomfortable wait. I want to say that it's okay to be nervous. I want to say that if there was anything we could do to speed things up, we would do it twice just to make sure it worked.

We love you and our prayers and good vibrations are headed your way.