Wednesday, June 27, 2007

The Temperature Here

Moving: Sucks

Best part: Watching my couch get thrown off the balcony (photos tomorrow. maybe)

Worst part: Everything else is the worst part

Neighbors: Jason, nerdy but nice; Dave(?), supernice, offered to help!, "is glad to have us"; Girl downstairs, not very friendly; Old lady, haughty

Lesson here: Girls are mean

Scratch that: Scratch that

New lesson: Boys just like girls (usually)

Progress: Porchswing up

Kitties: Sleeping

Boxes: Lord have mercy

Free wi-fi: YES!

Exhaustion: Setting in

Desperate to find my: Dustrags, drill, body wash

Outlook: Miles to go before I sleep.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The first supper.

Oh no! Now paul's stuff.

Hello rainbow.

I think he's stuck.

Did you know a penny will hold open a door? Even a heavy security door!

Kitties hate moving.

To the new pad. Let the games begin.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Boats Against The Current

In the winter, when the trees that line the back of my apartment complex's yard are bare, I can see through them over Schmidt Field, into downtown to the right, over the Ohio River and straight into Kentucky in the middle.

I can make out the barges and river boats that slide by. Though I can't see the docks, at night I can see the lights at the end of some of them twinkling in the dark.

One of those lights, straight across from my balcony, is green.

"Like the green light at the end of Daisy's dock," I say when I take people outside onto my balcony in the dark. "Downtown is to the right, but straight across is the green light."

I say this as though it has meaning, but what meaning, I'm not sure.

There are probably a million essays and term papers and books written about the symbolism of that green light in the Great Gatsby. I don't have any ideas one way or the other about what Fitzgerald was saying, but I appreciate that he gives me something to think about whenever I look across the Ohio River from my back door.

In college, in Professor Habich's American literature survery course, I read the Great Gatsby for the second time. I can't think of Daisy's Dock without thinking of him and our discussions of Gatsby's outstretched arms, reaching toward that green light. Gatsby may have lived in West Egg in the Roaring Twenties, but whenever I see the green light on the Kentucky side of the Ohio River, I imagine I am seeing what he saw.

I'm moving tomorrow. My winters of imagining Daisy's dock and Gatsby's longing for it will be gone. No matter. There will be another green light, a new allusion to hang my reveries on.

I'm looking forward to it.

Kitty Gate

This summer's big scandal: No kitties allowed outside.

Mulch Fires

Apparently there have been several. Savages.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Gatlinburg: Gateway to Hell

Bummer about the Thrift Store.

And the Trading Post.

I thought my vacation to Gatlinburg for the Tall Drink of Water's family reunion was going to be peaceful and relaxing. Wrong and wrong. First, the cabin we're in is in Pigeon Forge, which is crazier and more overwhelming than Gatlinburg. (VACANCY! GO-KARTS! T-SHIRTS! DINNER THEATER! WEDDING CHAPEL AND OLDE TIME PHOTOS! GOLDEN CORRAL!) And two, it's not been relaxing or peaceful so far.

We got diverted on a two-hour detour before we got out of Kentucky on Friday, then when we got into town there was this crazy fire.

Today we went whitewater rafting (there were promises of class 4 rapids), which turns out, was about 2 hours away with traffic. So we get there, we're all excited for some adventure and to get flipped out of a raft and at best the rapids were a 3. Tops. Probably more like a 2.5. That's what you call class inflation.

Then on the two hour drive back with wet asses from the lamo rapids, TDW's uncle's car broke down. Sweet! Twenty minutes later I'm walking down the strip in Gatlinburg thinking I might as well use this time to buy some fudge and an airbrushed t-shirt when I hear TDW's aunt and uncle yelling for us to come back.

Then you'll never believe what happened next, folks. With TDW pushing on my wet butt and me grabbing the car door, we climbed five feet onto the back of the flatbed tow-truck back into the car and proceeded to ride down the strip in the car, facing backwards, on the back of the tow truck. Windows down, staring into the windshields of the cars bumber-to-bumper behind (but facing) us, we just started waving like we were on float it was so insane. People just staaaared. And can you blame them?

Much laughter, more stares and two miles later we're at a shop waiting for the car to get fixed drinking Bud Lights in the parking lot.

That's all within 24-hours. I'm afraid to attend the scheduled horseback riding tomorrow for fear of what awaits me. Maybe I should just chill at the pool.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Like Tetris, Only With Air Conditioners

Question: How smart do you have to be to get a 10,500 BTU and a 6,000 BTU air conditioner into a Mazda 3?

Answer: Smarter than TDW and I, apparently.

The Tall Drink of Water pushed and pulled while I wrongly advised and made suggestions, all to no avail. The 10,500 BTU unit was not - I repeat, was not - going to fit into the car. Not the trunk, not the back, not the front.

We sat them on the ground and stared at them. Hmm.

Then an older woman, probably in her 50s, leaned her head out of the passenger side of the Ford truck that was parked across from us. Waving her cigarette she said very sweetly, "You might try taking it out of the box. I drive a Chrysler and whenever I buy anything, like a desk chair or whatever, I always have to take it out of the box. Then I just fold the box up."

We looked at her, then at each other and were like, 'Why didn't we think of that?'

TDW told her that was a genius idea and I pulled my pocket knife out of my purse (it always comes in handy) and commenced to cutting the plastic strips on the box.

Smiling as she watched us unpack the AC she said, "I didn't want to get in your business but that's always what I have to do."

After we finally wedged them both in we thanked her so profusely you'd have thought she squeezed them in them for us.

As we drove out of the parking lot of the Florence Lowe's I asked TDW how it is that two reasonably smart, college education people can't figure out how to get a couple of air conditioners into a car.

"She's older and wiser. She drives a small Chrysler, she's more experienced," he said.

My solution, on the other hand, is that one of us needs a truck. You know, for all the haulin' we do.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Dog Days at the Pool

The better part of my afternoon was spent at the pool, where most Saturdays and Sundays a small crowd gathers to drink, read magazines and chit-chat.

Most of today's chit-chat was about who in the complex has the cutest dog. A guy with a new puppy, which was described as "a little snuggle bear," was the winner. Indeed, a little while later this puppy and its owner came to the pool and it was absolutely tiny, fluffy and adorable. I even petted it, so you know it must have been cute.

Several other dogs and their owners came out as well, but none as cute as this little puppy.

I don't go to the pool much, but now that I realize what a nice community of young people gather out there, I'll miss it now when I move. One girl works at PF Chang's, so I got to hear some Chang gossip, which was fun. Another girl brought down a box of Dilly Bars and shared them with everyone and one of the guys had a cooler of homemade Bourbon slushies, made with lemonade and orange juice, he said, that he liberally offered. (It was delicious.)

Everyone ate and drank and discussed dogs, studio apartments and debated if "Jetta Girl" moved out. (Word is that she still lives on the third floor but stays with her boyfriend all the time because he has a dog and doesn't like to leave it.)

My favorite piece of info from the afternoon was from my downstairs neighbor, who is the assistant to the GM at The Precinct. According to her, Miss B. Ruby is getting married to Bengals linebacker Caleb Miller. Guess what they're giving away as favors for their wedding?

Filet Mignon, you say? Close.

Steak dust. Steak dust and bags of coffee.

I'd never heard of steak dust before, but when I told the Tall Drink of Water about this later his eyes lit up and he said, "I'd love to get Precinct steak dust at a wedding."

I'm going to the pool again tomorrow to find out what else is happening on Golden Avenue.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Home-A-Rama: MaxiPad Edition

This is eight minutes of your life you'll never get back, but don't let that deter you! This video of my apartment (which is super-absorbant) is riveting.

It started yesterday when I was having lunch with some colleagues. I was chatting about how I fear that I'll have to give up some of my favorite "art pieces" when the Tall Drink of Water and I move in together. Namely, he doesn't care for my Marilyn Monroe picture because it doesn't have glass over it and the frame is gold. (Given, the gold is awful, but I could paint it.)

And I have a sinking suspicion he also doesn't like my framed drawing of a pensive Johnny Cash with a bullet casing resting on the frame. Hello? It's artwork complete with an actual bullet casing... He shot a man in Reno, you know? (I don't actually know where the bullet casing came from. It was a gift along with the drawing.)

Last night I told TDW I feared he'll put Marilyn or Johnny in the basement but leave up his panoramic of "Boston at night."

"I'll let the Boston skyline photo go," he said. "But the Fenway Park panoramic stays!"

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Night Owl

Rob Warnick designed this poster.
I loved it so much I bought it. You should buy one too.

I spend my nights plotting. While everyone else is falling asleep on the couch or has drifted off in bed, I am awake concocting elaborate schemes.

Schemes that allow me more time to scheme, usually. But also what fantastic skills I might learn (this week it's jewelry making), everything I'll do when I move (walk to get a newspaper on Sundays), how to get into shape (without eating less), and what things I'd like to write about. (Anything of mine worth reading - admittedly, this is little, but still - was crafted in the middle of the night. Anything I write between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. is definitely crap, which is why I write most of my stories at home in longhand.)

For a few weeks there I was spending a late night planning out what to eat for dinner every night. I was briefly successful, but then I started staying up late scheming other things, like where to put my stuff when I move, and ran out of late nights to plan meals.

I also develop training plans in the middle of these night, including what muscles to work and how to work them. (My muscles are gonna be so huge, I think.) And I decide to take up various sports, such as running, soccer and dance during these ambitious "I'm gonna get in shape" late-night schemes.

It's this night time plotting that develops all the hobbies I end up quitting - probably because I stay up too late planning them and am too tired to follow through during the day. It doesn't help that I'm also very lazy and easily bored.

One of my favorite things to do while everyone else is sleeping is to make plans for these sleeping people. Such as what they're going to eat, what fantastic hobbies they're going to start, and how they're going to get into shape.

It must be exciting for them to be awakened at 2 a.m. with the announcement of these ambitious plans.

"Hey, hey," I say nugding and pushing. "Tomorrow I'm going to start taking a metals class. I'll cast you a ring using the 'lost wax' process. And we're going to start eating more vegetables and taking regular walks. Isn't that a good idea?!"

Monday, June 11, 2007

Soprano's Finale

Hee hee hee. I liked it.

I might be the only person who didn't want to punch David Chase when the screen went blank, but I think it ended perfectly.

How typical. How normal. How American. The fam sitting in a diner, listening to Journey, eating onion rings and struggling to parallel park. Fan-tastic.

When people weren't getting offed, that's all The Soprano's was about: An ordinary dysfunctional family, complete with angsty teens, disapointed parents and annoying brothers-in-law all framed among the banalities of life - eating, driving and sitting around watching TV in the McMansion.

For them to be doing those things when the screen went blank, poetic. But then again, maybe I'm just amused because everyone else feels like they got punked.

Either way.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Atta Boy

Tonight I saw the 21-year-old Homer Bailey make his debut.

Me and 38,696 other people held our breath for the first few pitches, then we all clapped till our hands got sore for the kid when he threw strikes. I'll tell ya, it was something.

I was on my feet with a lump in my throat I was so proud of him.

UPDATE: Mike posted a video of the final strike out in the fifth. It's great stuff. Watch it.

Flightless. Aquatic. Adorable.

Remember last week when I went to the Aquarium and petted penguins?

Here is the CiN At The Movies video I took. Watch how the penguin tries to escape at the end.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Mt. Lookout Animal Hospital

House cat at the vet's office.

Cassady's kitty IBS has been acting up, so I called the vet today to see if he could recommend another cat food for him. I fully expected them to make me bring him in, with a stool sample no less (ick), and force me to shell out $70 for a doctor's visit.

But I went ahead and told the receptionist what was wrong with him and she said she'd have his vet me back. Yeah right, I thought.

Within 30 minutes Cassady's vet called me, suggested a new cat food and made him out a prescription to help him feel better. Then he said, "Call me back on Monday or Tuesday and let me know how's he's doing with it. I want to know if he's feeling better."

Um. All right, I thought.

So I went to pick up the princess's prescription after work and the vet came out from the back - actually came out from the back! - to hand me the prescription and remind me to call him.

"Let me know how he does with the new food. I want to make sure he's tolerating everything," he said.

Now how about that?! I was stunned. I went to the doctor this week - with a fever, vomiting, peeing blood clots! - and my doctor never once told me to call her to let her know how I'm doing. But Cassady they roll out the red carpet for.

So I'm thinking, I'm gonna get me a vet. I felt like asking him, "Hey, I've been feeling kinda rough. Got anything back there for me?"

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Staff Question of The Week

This should say, "Gina is dying of a kidney infection."

Saturday night I got a kidney infection, complete with fever, chills, achiness, stomach cramps and vomiting. (Who knew that a kidney infection is like getting the flu and food poisoning all at once?) Because I thought I was dying, I didn't go to work Monday, which is usually when I answer the Staff Question of the Week.

This week's question: "If you bought a 27-inch TV and it turned out to be filled with chocolate, would you be mad your TV didn't work or would you be happy because, Hey, chocolate!"

I love this question, but since I was out sick Monday peeing blood and vomiting, I didn't get to answer. Sad!

So here it is: "Happy. Because what a GREAT story. 'Hey, I bought this TV and it was filled with chocolate! And my friends would be be like, 'No way!' And I'd go, 'For real!' And everyone would eat the chocolate and laugh about how crazy it is.'"

Ok, that's way too long for a staff answer, but you get the idea.

I don't care that much about chocolate, but I love good stories. And maybe it's filled with turtles, and I love turtles.

Everyone goes for funny in their staff answer, and mine isn't as funny as Julie H's or Rob's, but it's what I'd actually think if I bought a TV and it was filled with chocolate.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Hello Pretty

Sadly, I didn't get any photos of this bea-U-tiful cake with the balloon blobs on it without the container. So here it is, safe and protected.

I was hesitant to cut into it because I wanted everyone to see its full glory. "It has big icing blobs on it. Come look!"

But you can't judge a cake by its poop brown color or its giant icing balloons, because it was a pretty good cake. I wish I had a piece of it right now. Mmm.

Many of the Tall Drink of Water and I's friends came out Friday night to toast a warm Miller Lite and eat a piece of cake to celebrate our engagement. Here are some photos.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Good Times. Good Times.

150 wings + A very ugly (but delicious) cake + A half-barrel of beer = Superfun (and fancy!) engagement party.

The usual suspects.

The green balloon blob is missing!