Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Not Surprising

I'm going to take a quick break from my "Let's Unite, Not Divide" self and refer to this recent study on Mac v. PC users: "Research from internet ad network Mindset Media confirms the ad's personification of Mac users as "superior and self-satisfied."

Quote: ""This group has a sense of self-importance and tends to consider themselves extraordinary," says Sarah Welch, COO and co-founder of Mindset Media, adding that, since this group is so assured of its superiority, "I can see how [the guy in the commercial] isn't offensive to them.""

Shocking. No. Really.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Social. Security.

I'm mostly recovered from my recent bout with death. A lingering cough remains but, for the most part I'm back on my feet. It's well past noon and I've only had one Ricola today.

It's a slow day here at Chez Copywriting. It's a slow time in general. Everyone - my boss, my coworkers, my buddies - tell me that this is to be expected. January and February are ALWAYS slow, they say.

It's just a little unnerving, what with this big recession thing and all.

I keep telling myself that The Universe would not have plopped me down in the perfect apartment in the perfect town with a perfect job, enticing me to set down roots, only to bankrupt me six months later. But still.....

I have a meeting tomorrow w/ a guy about a freelance gig which, if done correctly, could net me an extra $2-3K. Also, there's a long term option to help out with another freelance project for a former Napoleanic sufferer. Which could add to the pocket change. Plus there's the hefty tax return I got this year. I love filing early!

So, all in all, I should be feeling good. But I'm still kind of freaking out. So much so, I'm going on an interview for a waitressing gig. A local restaurateur team is hiring for both a Gloucester location (home) and a Beverly location (work).

While I don't necessarily love the idea of working two jobs again, I do have to admit that I love the food biz. The lingo, the comaraderie, the zenness of it all. You meet really interesting people - both coworkers and patrons. And you develop an intimacy with those co-workers that crosses age, gender, lifestyle, class, pretty much everything. Which wouldn't suck for this NewInTownie. And it would make me feel like I had extra money. So it would offer a social outlet and some financial security.

But, then again, it would be dashing from one gig to another, getting home late, smelling like fried foods or seafoods or various flavors of alcohol (spilled not consumed).

I've found a blog called Waiter Rant that really summarizes the whole lifestyle very well. I especially liked this post.

I am keeping an open mind about the whole thing until at least after the lunchtime interview. At least I have plenty to obsess about during all my down time. How awful would it be to not be this neurotic and to be this bored?

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

More From Losers Club Gets the Flu

I've always avoided flu shots. The idea of injecting myself with something to ward off the chance that I might develop an illness down the line has always bothered me. No more.

I came down with the real symptoms Tuesday night. Wednesday I lost to sleep. Thursday I made it into work, only to leave early, go home and crash completely. Friday I was on the mend. HA!

Saturday, I went to the ER after waking up with the tell-tale eye goop of conjunctivitus. (Yes, thank you, I realize it's a disease usually reserved for kindgartners.) After consulting with a lovely woman at my insurance's 24/7 Nurse Help Line, who informed me I really shouldn't wait to get the eye checked out and, oh by the way, get that chest looked at too, you sound awful, I headed for the ER to pick up some antibiotic drops.

Revolving door care at it's best, I was in, triaged, looked at, given an Rx, and closed out all within 20 minutes. Except I couldn't leave. The hospital was on lockdown. Yes, that's right. Lockdown. I have no idea why - maybe there was a murderer on the loose. Maybe an abusive husband with a restraining order against him. Maybe aliens with the ability to impregnate unsuspecting humans. No reason was given. I just couldn't leave.

I was FINALLY released and went home to fill the prescription, which I promptly went home and used. WHICH MADE MY EYE WORSE. Great.

Monday, I went to the real doctor to get a friggin diagnosis since I still felt like death, was wrapped in a cocoon of misery, and hadn't been able to sleep due to the hacking cough that wracked my body every ten minutes. She declared: bronchitus. And gave me a prescription for an antibiotic and a cough syrup. Which turned out to be a suppressant and an expectorant.

If you don't understand that, think about it this way. It's like a cough speedball. Part of it makes you up, part of it makes you down. So my body wanted to cough, but my body didn't want to let itself cough. So, I wound up spending the night drowning on my own breath. FUN!

Last night, I went BACK to CVS (where, btw, they are completely unable to fill my prescription without playing phonetag for 20 minutes with my insurance). I was told the new cough syrup would cost me $55. Yep, $55. I was also told that, basically, this new cough syrup was liquid vicodin.

Really? Tell me more.

I took my dosage at 8:45. By 9:15 I was having really enjoyable pre-dream visions. By 9:30, I was completely unconscious.

I slept until 7 a.m. I got up, took a shower, and fell asleep for 20 more minutes.

So, this a.m. I feel LOTS better. I'm not sure if it's because I'm still in a vicodin-induced haze or if its because I actually slept the whole night through. Or maybe it's because the throbbing from my ears, cheeks, forehead and nose is finally gone. Whatever the reason, I hope it lasts.

And next year? Getting a flu shot!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Losers Club Goes to the PBR Update

Update. I spoke too soon. I brung it upon myself.

I cackled to Best Friend today about how the PBR went relatively incident-free. I mean, the few things that did happen were so minor, they weren't even worth mentioning, much less worthy of a Losers' Club Story.

Then, last night, Dad got sick.

Then this morning, Kalesy got sick.

This evening, Mom got sick.

I've consumed more Odwalla Super C Monster than can possibly be healthy. I've had lots of homeopathic stuff. I've sucked down lots of echinacea. I still hurt, ache, hotcold, and throb.

So much for that date.

It's a Beautiful Life

Back Up In the Saddle

Well, fresh off the success of a non-loser's club PBR event, I have momentous news. Kalesy is back on the horse. In a manner of speaking.

I have a blind date tomorrow night.

At first I was really not into this, even though I kind of initiated it. You see, I joined Match for a full on three-day free trial. I was bound and determined not to waste my three days, so I emailed the only moderately interesting candidate. He emailed back. Thusly it works. But for whatever reason, I had figured that, no, I wasn't really that interested and, ugh, I have a cold and I'm too busy and ....

But, screw it. I took another look at his profile and he seems pretty funny. And smart. And kinda cute (from what I could see. Did you look at my picture on that dern site? I rest my case.) And then I Googled him. Guess what? He's a CG Animator. Like, for real. Like for money. Yikes. His portfolio is indeed quite cool.

He's suggested we meet up in Gloucester, so as to save me a drive. Which is sweet. (Although he doesn't know my yoga class earlier in the day is actually closer to him. We'll keep that our secret.) He's also suggested a pretty swank Martini bar. Which means he either has taste and class or wants to appear that way. Either way, I'll get a pomegranate martini out of the deal.

So, maybe it will go well and maybe it will go crap. But, the sun is shining, the snow is dripping off the trees, I saw the sun rise over the harbor, and I have a date.

Yee Haw.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Life in a Northern Town

This is why I love life in a small town:

I have been lurking on a message board on Cape Ann Online. It's an intersting mix of personalities, but they've been helpful and friendly so no diss'es here.

One of the regulars is someone who's been part of the annual Gloucester Lobster Trap Tree. I don't know him/her personally. But the other day s/he posted that the tree is coming down Saturday. I responded with a note that I hoped it stayed lit through Friday night, as my family was coming up for the first time. How I wanted them to see that beautiful sight.

Well, today, I got an official shout out on Cape Ann TV. They're keeping the tree lit Friday night. Maybe it's not just for me. But it's partially for me. And they don't even know who I am.

Faith in humanity? Yes please.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Opening Up the Window

You know that phrase, sometimes when a door closes a window opens? Well, I do truly believe that. But I also believe that sometimes you have to open the damn window yourself.

Yesterday, with all my quiet time on hand, I did a lot of thinking. A lot of writing. A lot of meditating. And, truth be told, I wasn't all that happy a camper when I went to bed. I say went to bed because I didn't exactly sleep last night. I'm sure I did drift off for awhile, which would explain the nightmarish images that taunted me, but I didn't get any real rest. I finally struggled out of bed only to find out Fuzzy kitty had pooped in my closet. My eyes were swollen, my skin still pasty, I had new loads of laundry to do and it was only 8 a.m. Banner day.

But, on the way into work, I decided to say Fuck It. I was NOT going to be in a bad mood. At our 9:30 staff meeting I was going to be happy happy joy joy.

The meeting went great. Lots of laughter, none of it that would pass a PC meter. My boss remarked in front of the whole team what a great job I was doing manning the website fort.

At lunch, I sat with THREE other people who live in Gloucester. Human beings. Who live in my town. That maybe, just maybe, I could one day meet for coffee.

I got a call back on a part time waitressing job.

I got an offer for free knitting lessons at a local needlepoint group. Most of the members sound older than I am, but you never know. They could have cute children/neighbors/nephews/nieces.

Another cool thing happened about which I am unready to share.

I know these are all little things, but they're serving to make me happy. And that's enough for now.

See, even if I had to prop that damn window up, it is lettting in some fresh air.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

A Quiet Sunday

I finally got the quiet, restful day I wanted. I slept in today, cleaned, cooked, cleaned more, did laundry, cleaned, played with the kitties, and went for a walk. Oh, and took a long bath with my newly restocked supply of Lush bath products.

In fact, I turned off my phone and didn't even turn on my computer until about 10 minutes ago. I retreated from the world and it felt great.

I counted and I only spoke to four people today:
Dunkin Donuts drivethru girl
Guy at sandwich shop
Woman with yappy dogs on beach
Next door neighbor, who offered to fix my burned out headlight. (how NICE is that?)

I have to return to the world tomorrow, but for now, I'm enjoying my little holiday.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

A Moment of Hope ... and Fear

Barack Obama is projected to win the Iowa Caucus. And listening to him speak, I am struck again with the belief - the hope - that He Is My President.

I do believe in an America of Ideals. An America of Principles ahead of Practicality. OF HOPE.

But I'm scared. The last few elections have been so close. We lost to Bush even though we didn't actually lose to Bush.

Can this country elect a black man? Will this country elect a black man?

I don't know the answer to that question.

I know what I want to believe, tonight, with tears streaming down my face.

And, I know that tomorrow, I will seek out ways to campaign for this man.

And, Huckabee? Screw you!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Navel Gazage

Already 2008 has been an eventful year.

But today, I won't post about the seriously almost getting seriously lost in the woods, with night seriously approaching.

I won't post about the amazing Shakti experience I had last night and again today at yoga.

I won't post about almost hydroplaning and coming within inches of a guardrail.

I'll instead post this. I am the kind of nerd that asks for books of poetry for Christmas. And this year I got a compilation of poems by Billy Collins, former Poet Laureate and oft heard on Prairie Home Companion. And this piece makes me very, very happy. Without further ado:

On Not Finding You at Home

Usually you appear at the front door
when you hear my steps on the gravel,
but today the door was closed,
not a wisp of pale smoke from the chimney.

I peered into a window
but there was nothing but a table with a comb,
some yellow flowers in a glass of water
and dark shadows in the corners of the room.

I stood for a while under the big tree
and listened to the wind and the birds,
your wind and your birds,
you dark green woods beyond the clearing.

This is not what it is like to be you.
I realised as a few of your magnificent clouds
flew over the rooftop.
It is just me thinking about being you.

And before I headed back down the hill,
I walked in a circle around your house,
making an invisible line
which you would have to cross before dark.