Monthly Archives: June 2011

Phone trees

How many times do you call a number only to have the recorded voice tell you what number to push for what you need?

And am I the only one that needs to listen to it multiple times because I get bored and stop listening and then realize I totally missed the boat and have to re-listen? I’m afraid to hit any number because what if I am pressing one that is for an emergency?

I wonder if a doctor’s office ever screwed up with the order and put ‘if this is an emergency, press 8’ after the caller had to listen to 7 other button  options.

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WHY? Or HOW do I manage to injure myself?

Who gets hurt by a corkscrew? Oh, that’d be me.

Tried to open a bottle of wine, and instead, I opened my skin. Blood everywhere.

Other harmless kitchen objects that I’ve been able to injure myself with include a toaster oven which caused a burn on my arm and a broken glass resulted in a bloody toe.

What about falling in the street? Because I’ve done that several times.

In just one day last week, I went to get my eyebrows threaded, and instead of the lady putting aloe on my brows, as is normal, she sprayed alcohol on them. Later that day, I walked past a building where the window washers were spraying pretty much at eye level and I walked right through that and to end that day, when I was in the grocery store, getting one avocado, three avocados rolled off the display and landed on my left foot.

I wish I was kidding.


Horrors of Hoarding

I once lived in an apartment where the tenant passed away inside the apartment. But the Fire Department couldn’t get INTO the apartment to get her out.

Because she was a hoarder.

When this lady died, or whenever she was discovered, the Fire Department showed up in droves. There must have been two or three trucks, and twenty guys. I remember peeking out the peephole to see one fireman after another, heading up the stairs and turning the corner, holding axes and whatever else they have to use.

When they finally removed her, and her hoarding, the hoarded items were left in the garbage area on the first floor.

When I say I had never seen anything like this in my life, I have to think that most people haven’t either.

There were floor to ceiling stacks, each thing was stacked inside itself, of:

Quart size containers (that you’d get Egg Drop soup in)
Half gallon ice cream containers
Magazines (from who knows how far back)
Newspapers (stacks and stacks and stacks)

It was absolutely unbelievable.

Days later we had knocks at the door asking if we wanted to be exterminated.

Gross!!

The plus of moving so much – me – is that it gives me a chance to go through my stuff and eliminate. I like to say I move lightly! But this woman had lived in this apartment for nearly 50 years. She had plenty of time to collect a lot of stuff…and not throw anything out.


Extreme Couponing

Oh Em Gee.

I can’t even remember to pull out a ‘save 50 cents’ coupon if I go to the supermarket. These people on the show of the same name are serious shoppers. But, some of them may have another problem. Extreme hoarding. How many jars of pickles and bags of rice cakes does one family need?


Happy Birthday

Happy birthday to you.

Today would have been my grandpa’s 82nd birthday. We were tight. Like not ‘hey I’ve got to call my grandpa because that’s what granddaughters do’ tight, but tight. We’d talk two, three or four times a week for at least an hour. I think it was one of the highlights of his day, and I know it was one of the highlights of mine. When he died, I think that a piece of me died with him. I miss him. Every. Single. Day.

I miss him so much. When I think about him, my heart tightens, my throat closes up and if the timing is right, the tears flow. The feeling hasn’t subsided much after four years, five months and fifteen days and I suspect it never will.

And many more. Except I wish the ‘many more’ were here with me.


Pulling the Trigger (no not a gun) – Booking Airfare

For someone who loves to fly and visit her family, she sure is afraid to pull the airline booking trigger. And because of that, she got screwed. Royally screwed. Knew it was going to be a last-minute fare, and saw the price at $275 over a week ago, but hesitated. Then $346…and was about to book but had to leave for work, so didn’t book it. Then for days the price hovered in the mid 400’s…and she wished it to go back to $346. The mid 400 price turned out to be an upper 400 if you added all the booking fees, seat fees and gas fees. Which eventually turned into a low 500 fare, and now with stops.

While she thinks it would be worth every penny, everyone in her family told her she was nuts to give that kind of money to the fickle and greedy airlines, especially if she were to book now to go in just a few more weeks, the airfare searches come up for half the price.

So she didn’t book.

But she still continued the fruitless search with enough time to leave for the airport to get the last flight of the night. And with that, came the best. idea. ever.

For those people who can travel at a moments notice, literally, there should be a way to negotiate with the airlines for a fare. I mean, there’s probably only a small segment of the population that would be intrigued by this anyway, and it’s a chance for the airlines to get a few more dollars for empty seats they probably wouldn’t have been able to fill otherwise.

Most people book weeks, if not months, in advance. Getting those last few seats filled could prove profitable. This gal does hate the middle seat but for this last chance opportunity, she’d jump at the chance to get away, right. this. second.

As one of those people who can be ready to leave with a moments notice, thanks to an already packed toiletries bag, and clean clothes in the closet, there’s no reason not to go. Especially when ‘the price is right for that last-minute flight.’ And, you, yes, you, the first airline to bring this idea to fruition, I even provided you with a spot-on tagline.

The idea is genius, right?


Restless Legs

Last week I went to a reading series, appropriately titled, Restless Legs. Not only is it a great name for the group, it’s a perfect nickname for me.

The reading I went to had the theme of women’s focused writing. Each woman read an excerpt from their book (the dream!). There were four readers – each had her own story.

We heard from four different women about…

  • The differences and stereotypes facing a single woman in her 30s while visiting her family in India from NYC.
  • The challenges that arise when souvenir shopping for a young neighbor after discovering that the best gift for a 12 year old boy is a soccer jersey.
  • A love/hate affair with, and affairs in, Paris.
  • Moving a young family to Spain while the mom learns how to flamenco dance. Twice.

In the same order, each of the writers…

  • Reminded me that every country has different views of young, single women.
  • Made me laugh as I remembered some of my more tedious quests for the perfect gifts to bring home.
  • Made me want to return to Paris and do it right.
  • Made me long for the smells, the sights and the sounds of Spain.

Wanderlust much?