Tuesday, August 28, 2007

When Paranoia Happens to Good People

I've been overcome with some random paranoia for the last few days. Maybe it's because I spent time at the family homestead, rife as it is with mental illness. (No, seriously. Diagnosed. Medicated. Now you know why I might be the way I am...)

Anyway, I've been paranoid that Mr. Zips is mad at me. I've been paranoid that Napolean is about to fire me. I've been paranoid that my complete and utter slackage has been noticed at work. I've been paranoid that I really don't want to be a writer.

So, I haven't been the easiest person in the world to deal with of late. I study asana, but it probably won't amount to much unless I put the yoga sutras to work in my life. Eh?

That said, I do have a couple of things to be proud of/ thankful for.

I finished up my submission for writing group so early that I've sent it to myself to review before I send it out to everyone. And I didn't even have to fall back onto my "safety story."

I finished up an entire box of dental floss. This might not be a big thing for most people, but this is the first time I have EVER achieved this milestone. I'm taking my health seriously. Go me!

I have an interview and a book club meeting tomorrow. New job opportunities and new friend opportunities all in one night!

And, finally, a mixed emotional tale:

Mr. Zips is massively stressed out about the upcoming Best Friend's Wedding. He left tonight so that he could get home and prepare -- do laundry, clean room, pack, etc. etc. And while it saddens me that he won't be here to snuggle with me tonight and that he's so stressed about this brue ha ha he's literally losing sleep over it, there is a part of me that is vindicated. Maybe now he understands why I freak out every time I have a long ass business trip. Maybe now he gets it when I stress about cleaning up the apartment or using up food I've got in the crisper or stopping at the grocery store now instead of when I get back... I don't want to be vindictive, but there is a certain amount of pleasure in the "I told you so" reality.

But alas, it's nearly midnight. Time to go to bed and hopefully dream dreams that are not rife with paranoia. A girl can hope.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Romy and Michelle ...

was not a good movie ...

Still, I can't help but think about it as I sit here, in my parents' kitchen, reading an email about my 15th High School Reunion. There's something disturbing about it as I prepare to pack up and head back to Boston bright and early tomorrow. Packing tonight because there's absolutely nothing else for me to do in town tonight, a Saturday night, because I don't know a single young soul in this state any longer.

Is that a good thing or a bad thing?

Oh, Mr. Tierney. A history of mental illness. A naked blonde walks into a bar, with a poodle under one arm and a 12-foot salami under the other arm....

Obviously, I'm not the only person in the world with agida about my high school past.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

How long jet lag?

Well, I am indeed back from Dublin. And although I would love to report that I fell back in love with the country and am once again dying to live there, I cannot.

It was rainy. It was cold. The people were obsessed with fashion. And drink. And the men were sexist. And that's putting it mildly.

I got one free night. I walked around trying to take pictures. It was rainy. Okay, it was a torrential downpour. But as we all know, Mr. Zips likes foggy photos. Here's a tribute:

On my one free night I walked around (and around and around) in the rain. Which might account for how exhausted and sick I've felt since then.

Or maybe that's because of the massive amounts of wine I drank the following night.

Kalesy tried to party with the big boys. Kalesy failed miserably.

I didn't do anything too stupid, unless I was supposed to want the Scottish salesguy to whip his dick out and stick it on the table while we were all eating. But I don't think so....

I retired back to my room and called Mr. Zips, drunken and sad, bemoaning the fact that women are never just loved for their brains.

This feels slightly ironic coming from someone who was obsessing prior to departure about whether or not she'd be able to work out whilst travelling abroad. But at least I recognize the irony.

Now I'm back Stateside and have been since Saturday. So why do I feel like there's still 20 pounds of cotton shoved into my head? Eight p.m. hits and I am "So very ti ti" as the Zips Family would say. Not sure when I can stop blaming jet lag and just cough it up to the fact that I've been going nonstop for several weeks with no end in sight.

Of course, the one amazing thing is that Karl Rove resigned while I was abroad. You haven't lived 'till you've seen Kalesy doing the HappyHappyJoyJoy dance in a hotel room in Dublin, alone, with only Sky News to keep her company.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

What Day is Today?

The human spirit is an amazing thing.

It's 9:20 GMT which means it's 4:20 EST which means I've been awake going on 32 hours. I lie - I took an hourlong nap. Still...

Somehow I managed to remain remotely human, somewhat intelligent, and mostly cheery during my inter-human-interactions today. No idea how.

I did manage to smack my hand into a railing while climbing stairs (my balance isn't even that good when I'm rested, you should see me now. Vrksasana? Not on your life.) But otherwise I don't have too many injuries to show for the ordeal.

Still, as I sit in my room, not really listening to SkyNews, I realize that I'm just not ready to go to sleep. My body thinks it's dinner time. (Note - I just ate a ginormous plate of pasta - YUM! Whole thing! YUM!) So I'm contemplating breaking down and indulging in a remnant of some mind-altering substances prescribed to help me sleep during my oral surgery nightmares. I'm not proud that I'm thinking of it, but if I don't get some sleep I might actually lose my mind. Besides, if I'm moderately screwed up tomorrow (read chemical hangover) I can blame EXTREME JETLAG! Sorry, I was channeling my inner hardcore rocker...

Today begins one of the more stressful weeks of my life. Wish me luck.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

When Good Hosts Get Real

I am a big fan of the Daily Show w/ Jon Stewart. Heck, I'm a big fan of Jon Stewart in general. I'm no obsessive, but the interviews I've seen or read with him lead to me to think of him as an intelligent, poignant and pointed, critical mind.

On tonight's show, I actually think he lost his cool. And I applaud him. He did a bit on G. W.'s use of "In Other Words." It was fairly Bushism standard. But Jon ended with this rant: "When you say "in other words" it's because you think we don't understand. We understand. We just don't "BLEEPING" get it!"

I truly and honestly try not to out and out hate people. It's bad karma, among a dozen other things. But as I read more and more about people dying needlessly in this war he lied us into and all of the domestic Cluster Effs that are happening, I'm having more and more trouble staying on my happy side of the fence.

I just don't bleeping get it.

Back to the Grind

I won't bore anyone with the trials and tribulations of returning back to work after so long in the beautiful Maine woods. Almost everyone knows what it's like to return to an overflowing inbox and a mile-long task list.

Of course, not everyone works for Napolean.

Suffice to say, his newest kick is to make sure that every single thing I write for this company doesn't use a "z" (read "zed") so as to not offend our European and Australia/New Zealand colleagues. Optimize? Forget it. Analyze? No way. Standardize? Not on your life.

I tend to think that there comes a time when the awkwardness of phrasing that must be employed to avoid the use of the zed outweighs the need for universality of spelling. But, hey, I'm no CMO.

At least yesterday, I got a little bright spot in my life. Witness this view from the parking lot.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Loser's Club Vacations in Maine, Pt. 2

If you're ridiculously afraid of a) heights and b) wind (don't ask) what makes more sense than to go mountain climbing on a blustery day?

Mr. Zips and I got up early as usual on Day 1 of vacation. Off we scoot to Jordan Lake in Acadia National Park for a "moderate" hike around the lake. 3.5 miles - a couple of hours - no big deal, eh?

And to start, it was a perfect hike. Cool and foggy, which meant Mr. Zips was in photog heaven. (In addition to cat paws, animal tongues, and mushrooms, Mr. Zips is a sucker for pictures of mist.)

Then we decided to take the "South Bubble Mountain Summit Trail."

Here's what South Bubble Mountain looks like in the early morning mist.

The hike up was challenging but none too scary. A glacier deposited thousands of rocks which provided a natural staircase for the mile-long vertical climb. And we were rewarded with quite the view.

What they don't tell you in the guidebooks is that the other side of the South Bubble Mountain Summit Trail is down a sheer cliff face. Straight down. Overlooking 600 feet of FALLING. See the rocky mountaintop hiding behind the trees in the rightside of the picture below? Yea, that's where we almost died.

I started panicking even before we began our descent. A short way down and we passed a rugged looking family backtracking because the mom had gotten too scared to make it any further. "Coming up was bad enough," they told us, "I'd hate to have to go down this one."


So, we in fact turned around and shamefacedly made our way down the same way we came up the mountain. It wasn't as adventurous, but then again, we're not dead now.

All in all, Mr. Zips took 384 photos of our amazing time in Maine. You can see more of them by going to his amazing Flickr site.

Does my heart good to look through them as I prepare for another 10 plus hour day in the office. Maybe we should have stayed on that trail....

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Loser's Club Vacations in Maine, Pt. 1

Well, I am back from vacation. And although I was nearly in tears by 8:15 a.m. after downloading all the emails I received while I was away (gone for 2 days and I have 137 emails? Surely I am NOT that important...) I think the trip was well worth it.

Except for the fairly losers' clubish stuff that happened....

I have to hold off on telling the first tale as it will be greatly enhanced by the photographs Mr. Zips took. Suffice to say it involves rocks, heights, and a panic attack.

Yesterday, we got up n' at em, had a lovely breakfast at an outdoor cafe, and then hunkered down in the car for the 5+ hour drive. The thing with Maine is that you just can't get there from here. I kept myself occupied by reading the hilarious roadside signs including the "Hair Force One Cutting Studio" and the store named simply, "Stuff." I also enjoyed the numerous flea markets selling moose antlers and boasting "EXTREME FAMILY FUN!"

Finally, we made it back to civilization - an hour north of Boston on I-95 S in New Hampshire. Exiting the toll booth, Mr. Zips very calmly said, "And there's a flat tire." Followed immediately by the unmistakable thudding, shuddering, and all over shaking that accompanies a blowout. Somehow, we safely made it across four lanes of traffic.

Luckily, Mr. Zips had been given a AAA membership almost exactly 1 year ago - it expires Aug. 31. But that's still plenty of time for a tow. And while we got a little bit of attitude from the kid from Dave's Towing for not having a spare, we were rescued, fixed up and back on the road in record time.

Just in time for rush hour traffic.

To give him his props, Mr. Zips never once lost it. He had to shell out nearly $300 for new tires and alignment and never once whined or anything. In fact, he was comforting me as I sighed and moaned about how exhausted I was and how much I missed my kittens.

So, today, to reward him for being an all around generally fabulous human being, I bought him a membership - effective Aug. 31 - to the Better World Club. It's kinda like AAA but it has an environmental conscience and doesn't lobby for more cars, more roads, bigger badder benefits for GM, Ford, et. al. Here's hoping he never needs to use it.
Here's Mr. Zips making the best of the situation as we lurk amid the tires at the car store...