Sunday, January 30, 2011


Because I know you all care deeply, the purse replacement has arrived safely, the one with the hole in it returned smoothly, and all is right with the handbag world. Except that when I returned the holey one I found a fabulous Marc by Marc Jacobs that is of course THE PERFECT BAG. I didn't even look at the price. How do you go through a three-year bag drought and then suddenly find the perfect bag? You buy another one. That's how.

I met that Tracey for coffee yesterday. She's had a couple of readings with a psychic we met a few years back at a psychic fair (faire?) and she had to tell me all about her most recent one. The psychic is spot on with her and her situation, and I REALLY want to have her read me since it's been a while (a long while..) despite the fact that her prices are high. I guess I just need a little guidance.

During coffee I got a text from an old friend who is in town for his brother's funeral. I saw him for the first time in years at the funeral on Friday (it was huge, such a tribute to the brother) and he was leaving town today, so we met for lunch. Sometimes when so much time passes you wonder what the hell you are going to talk about (we chat from time to time on the phone and via email, but sometimes face to face is different), but it was great fun and felt a little like old times. He lives in Texas. We were discussing my future in this crazy industry I'm in and he suggested I move to Texas. Texas? Hmm. Texas.

I like busy days like yesterday that keep you running because it helps me avoid the obvious chaos currently reigning in this casita. Unfortunately the only thing I need to do today is hit Trader Joe's, and after that there is no denying the vacuum/laundry/kitty box extravaganza going on here. Slightly cranky because as a result of all the escrow surgeries going on out there (lady-part removal), I seem to be picking up the slack for everyone and just continually in a state of .. um .. reproductive preparation. Get it? Being 45 is awesome.

There is simply no denying it - I'm booking airfare for Cancun this week. Period.

So as this is just another tool I use to procrastinate, there is simply nothing else left to do but get the heck moving. So off I go to de-fur the living situation. I hope for all the rest of you that today is much better on your end.
Can I just say something? This is ridiculous. It has gone on WAY too long and I even had a dream last night that made me wake up this morning thinking about how RIDICULOUSLY long this has been going on and I don't know what the hell is going on but for crying out loud, can this just end already? Come on. Help a sister out.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Handbag Blues

So I bought that purse, right? Discovered on Saturday a hole in it. It happens. Luckily, I thought to myself in the parking lot of the Fred Meyer, I bought it at Nordstrom.

Nordstrom has fantastic customer service. Anyone who lives near one and has ever shopped there knows this. They are simply perfection. Almost to a fault - a couple of Anniversary Sales ago I bought a bag, used it daily for a year, chock full of the crap I seem to need to cart around, and finally one day the strap broke. I called Nordstrom immediately to find out if I could have it repaired, and the salesperson told me to bring it in and they'd have a look. I did. It was pretty thrashed, so they said they would just refund my money. What?

I'd carried it for a YEAR. Full of CRAP. HEAVY. Purse abuse. I tried to tell them no, that I'd certainly got my money's worth, but they weren't having it. Back on to the Nordstrom card went a full credit, so I promptly took my new-found riches and bought a pair of pants.

So you can imagine my loyalty.

The thing is, customer service is a complete phantom anymore. There's no such thing. Seriously. It doesn't matter where you go, how you act, what you need, how you ask for it, how much you smile. People in the service industry today just don't give good service. Checkers are surly, telephone numbers only lead to infobots with no hope of getting a live person, live person telephone lines are fed offshore where they just read off a script and don't really get the concept. Nobody cares anymore, and nobody wants to do a good deed. Or offer a suggestion. Or apologize for your unpleasant experience with their company or product. I'm sick of it. It's a bandwagon I refuse to jump on, because I decided long ago that I will always be like Nordstrom.

Sad that we live in a society today that is genuinely surprised when someone provides them with good customer service. It's disheartening to know that when you are faced with having to call a company the odds are good you will hang up after the call defeated, frustrated and oftentimes angry. How hard is it to provide decent service? Does it take that much of an effort to put a little personality into a phone call or a sales transaction? Or to return a phone call when you say you will? I would imagine it's harder to avoid the person who needs your service.. but then again, I couldn't imagine treating my customers they way I am routinely treated.

It's kind of a bummer, this post.

I was supposed to get my replacement bag via UPS today, but the label Nordstrom put on the box ended up not showing my company name, and since I am not always in this office, they couldn't figure out where to deliver it. The UPS guy did really try to figure out how to help me, but his hands were somewhat tied. I tried to take the burden off my Bag Lady at Nordstrom by tracking it myself, but the UPS system wouldn't let me add my own suite number to the label. In the end, my Bag Lady took care of it, and the bag will arrive tomorrow.

Because Nordstrom rocks, and everyone else needs to take a lesson.

Friday, January 21, 2011


I think I might be that old.

This week I was in Orenco, and Jodi's grandson needed a song for some project at school, I can't remember exactly what/where/why, but it had to have meaning of some sort, God, who knows, but ANYway, it all came down to Jodi decided the song he needed to have was "Abraham, Martin and John" by Dion. She sent out an email to the branch asking if anyone had a copy of it, and emotions ran rampant.

Pretty much all by me.

Three of the girls are young. Like barely past 25. And the rest are in general the generation that might actually know a) who Dion is and b) this song. I saw the song title and immediately got chills because I LOVE this song. Discussion ensued, and it turns out, the younger set had NO IDEA what this song was. Neither did one of the girls who is like 2 months younger than me. From which another emotion sprang forth, and that is, what is this crap you've been listening to your whole lives that you've never heard this song? Who are your parents that they've never played music that THEY might like in front of you? I know a full range of music, from Big Band to Old School Gangsta Rap, and I appreciate how popular music has evolved over the decades. But you can't tell me that when you were like seven you didn't hear some of the music your parents played, or you never worked in an office where the guy next to you listened to an oldies station? Good Lord.

Jodi figured out how to get the copy for herself (which in itself was pretty funny) and brought it in today, which was good, because I'd been singing it all week. Dion is a lot better at it than me. So we had a planned listening of it, but I couldn't wait and took it in to Rita's office to give it a listen. Chills. I love this song. But while we were listening (Rita's more my age), I got a little bit angry, because, again, who doesn't know this song? I mean on top of everything else, it's iconic. I mean listen to the goddamn thing. It was with great horror (are you getting all these emotions down?) that I realized then that I had suddenly turned into an 83 year old WWII vet bitching about kids today, and their God damned music, and then it hit me: I'm old.

Like when people (the young coworkers?) describe me to their friends, they probably say, "This old broad in our office is kind of losing it." Or if I say something that doesn't make sense they might just be thinking, Well, I guess it's happening. More and more shopclerks are calling me ma'am, and just yesterday a little girl called me La Vieja while walking past me on her way to the doctor's office upstairs. So when did THAT happen?

It's disconcerting to some degree, but then again, crazy old ladies get away with a lot... I could look at this like an opportunity.

Maybe when I'm really ready to seal the deal.

But for now, please enjoy this fabulous video. Get a tissue, because seriously, the song is hard enough, but with the video? Killer.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


Tonight I had dinner with that Marshy at Cafe Yumm. It's funny, because I can't stand it when people yum stuff. I am sure I've mentioned this somewhere. It was pretty good, and when I can finally eat grains I'm fired up to go there again. Yum-o.

Also, that Jan-o is in town again and I thought we might be able to meet for dinner but I had forgotten that I had planned to meet with that Marshy, and in the end it all worked out because that Jan-o had a long day. Tomorrow perhaps.

So, you know, I'm getting out and stuff.

Today it rained like a big fat bitch and it was cold and I didn't wear my coat so I continue to freeze and probably will be frozen until I've been in my big fat two-comforter-flannel-sheets bed for about an hour. And then I'll inexplicably wake up bathed in sweat and not because of too many comforters but because of something else. Something. Else. I think you know what that means.

I went shopping with Barbie Sunday as she needed shoes, and I thought, hey, maybe I'll break down and buy a god damned coat, but instead I bought a fantastic Brahmin bag and I'm pretty much over the coat thing. It's January. It's practically not even coat weather anymore. I'm so optimistic (I'm so in denial).

Again, not planned out, but I resolved to blog more and by God I'm doing it, whether you guys enjoy it or not.

I'll be interested in seeing how I actually pull off this Cancun-in-April gig.

I had Monday off and though I vacuumed and cleaned out the litter box and the kitchen and the kitties' bathroom, I was done by like 12n and promptly took to the couch for a three hour nap. It's one of the seven deadly sins, you know. Sloth. It's bad. But every time I go out, I spend money. And seriously, I really don't have any.

Not much to report, as usual, but I'd like to mention that I hope I am not one of those people on FB that constantly post about how they are overcoming the struggles of everyone hating on them. Do you know what I'm talking about? Not quotes, necessarily, which I do on the days I work, but like, you know, constantly posting about how other people perceive them. Like it sounds to me like people are constantly putting them down in real life, so they go on FB and say stuff like, "I won't let small minds keep me down", or, "I'm thankful that I have a handful of true friends", or, "Everybody hates me but I want all you nearly-strangers to know I'm strong" (essentially..). Because that's what I think it means. I think they (um, not they, this one person) want her FB "friends" to think she is this strong woman overcoming great odds when in reality it just makes me think she's an asshole to everyone and not just to me and it's no wonder people give her so much shit she has to post that it doesn't bother her. I so want to comment one time, "Wow, it must suck to have so many people not like you. It's totally you're personality, too bad you can't do anything to change it."

Would that be rude?

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Adult ADD

By the way, I still haven't bought the coat.

And I'm very proud of the Ducks. And you Beaver fans can gloat all you want but your last hope is going to the NFL so I guess you'll have to continue to be just slightly below mediocre. That's all I'm offering.

The meteorologists predicted that we would have snow and/or freezing rain in the valley today, right around rush hour. We didn't. I just looked out the window and the pavement is wet, but it's not raining or snowing right now and a car drove through the parking lot with ease. I am not upset, quite the contrary. I don't like crappy weather and I certainly don't want to drive in it, and since it's Tuesday, I'm happy that my drive tomorrow will simply be like any other day in Portland - dark, wet and stupid. I just wish that I could be wrong 95% of the time in my job and still get paid ridiculous amounts of money.

I tried to buy it today, and found one on Lands End's website, but then Neon Dionne told me about coupon codes and we found one for free shipping (the stupid coat cost like $40 and free shipping just got me all excited) and then I had to go do something work-related or go to the bathroom or something for like two minutes and when I came back and tried to buy the stupid coat it ended up no longer being available. The hell is that? Is it because of the coupon code? I didn't go back to the normal site to find out, so it's anybody's guess. Something seems to be holding me back on this stupid coat purchase.

Kind of worried about my job again. "Kind of" meaning I'm really worried about it but I don't want to mention it or show fear or anything. What the hell else can I do? Do I have the strength for another reinvention? I just sighed after typing that. Seriously.

Let's talk about the sun, shall we? Planning an April Cancun trip. I am wearing Cleveland Browns gloves with the fingers cut off so that I can type. This matters because I am not outside. I'm actually inside with all of the heaters on, sweatshirt, sweatpants, thick socks, slippers and these gloves, and I still can't feel my hands. Wait. I thought we were talking about the sun. See how easily it slips my mind?

I sat down just now to check email and FB and suddenly decided to blog, so this wasn't one of those well-thought-out, I'm-here-to-make-a-point posts that I'm known for (...). It's just me sitting here, cold, with cut off Cleveland Browns gloves, telling you about a coat I will never own.

Since things should mostly have a purpose, my brother-in-law Paul is at it again with his road trip adventures ~ this time to sunny Baja California. Watch him progress at and leave him some words of encouragement and support. He's not getting any younger and the crises are starting to multiply.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

The coat, the dilemma, and an opinion

We'll start with the coat. The stupid, motherfucking coat. I took Barbara's advice and tried Nordstrom's men section at both the regular store and the Rack. Nada. I had already checked Macy's men's and women's sections. Nothing. I even went out to the Coastal Farm and Ranch yesterday and found stuff that would do in a pinch, but how badly do I want Carhart or Dickie's plastered all over my body? Obviously not badly enough. So I am still coatless and it's supposed to snow Tuesday night/Wednesday morning (for the commute. Of course, today is Sunday, so that means they are so far off that it might just be 78 and sunny by Wednesday morning.). I DID, however, find exactly what I want online at LL Bean, and I've been ordering LL Bean since forever and they have never done me wrong, and if I had only just ordered the dang thing when I first got this ridiculous wild hair I would probably have it by now. Balls. Ordering it today. I allege.

The dilemma is this: tomorrow is the biggest. day. of. my. life. and I've been invited (actually I was begged) to a friend's house to watch it. I hope you've been paying attention. Though I've disproved the theory that I have to be home alone in my own house watching the Ducks for us to win, (Cabo) (I still kind of don't want to talk about it) (not Cabo, but missing the game), I am still really nervous about this situation. Not just because I'm working out in Hillsboro this week and she lives clear the motherfuck in southeast Portland and my plan even just to get to Beaverton for kickoff included me leaving the office at 4:30, but also because, well, the obvious. Other people. There will be other people there. People that she claims are huge Duck fans, and that they spend most of the time yelling at the TV and pacing and storming around, like me, but still. I mean, I doubt they are EXACTLY like me. I doubt any one of them will hide behind the sofa or the collar of their sweatshirt at any given time. Or race to the bathroom to throw up (which I will admit has not happened with any solid results since the 1st quarter of the Stanford game), or go into the kitchen and throw around whatever happens to be drying on the drainboard. Or cuss really REALLY loud. I don't know. I just don't know if I'm ready for it.

But she begged. So I feel badly (after having already said I would go) telling her at the last minute that I can't do it. And in theory, it's a social event (in theory, because who am I kidding? This is harder work than even the toughest of escrow desks I work on), and I have resolved to be a little bit more social in the new year. (But really, is THIS the right situation in which to exercise the social muscles?) Then there are the other Duck faithful that I work with who implore me never to leave the house for a Duck game and who, in the event our defense is looking a little sketchy or DT is having an off quarter, will text me and ask, "Are you even HOME?!" What about them? Why is it okay to let THEM down and not this other friend, who, in all honesty, has spent her entire Duck fandom without me? Barbie told me to be true to myself. I think I've made my decision.

So since the dilemma isn't really a dilemma anymore, let me now voice my opinion. I'm glad that there are Duck fans coming out of the woodwork right now. I'm happy to see more Duck sweatshirts and decals and flags (kind of. I still have flag issues) out there. But I have strong feelings about bandwagons and "support Oregon teams" and all that. You see, in my world, there are Duck fans and there are Beaver fans and then there are people that are into NASCAR. When the Ducks didn't have a baseball team, and the Beavers went to the College World Series, I didn't root for them, I didn't support them at all. I'm a Duck fan. Period. You don't cross a line simply because your school doesn't have a program. I'm not a "state of Oregon college" fan, I'm a Duck fan. And as a Duck fan, I hate the Beavers. So why would I ever root for them? I have much respect for Beaver fans who want nothing to do with the Ducks going to the National Championship (now, THERE'S a line no Beaver will ever be able to type), because they shouldn't be Duck fans suddenly after years of being Beaver fans. If, in fact, someone claims to be a Beaver fan but buys the Duck sweatshirt and roots for the Ducks in tomorrow's game, fine. But then the truth is that they never were Beaver fans to begin with. Do you get me?

There's nothing wrong with being a fair-weather fan, just don't do it around me. I take this shit seriously. And please do your sudden burst of Duck gear shopping at the Fred Meyer because it's flipping a nightmare in the Washington Square Duck Store these days, and it pisses me off that TRUE Duck fans have to wait in ridiculous lines behind people who never thought to be a Duck fan until it became chic and was mentioned on late night TV. I guess it all boils down to this: do what you want to do, support the Ducks, be all happy for Oregon schools and the PAC-10, great. Just don't try to start a conversation about it with me, because I don't buy in to it. Not being elitist (since there are some of us who have been strong, solid, never-say-die Duck fans for our ENTIRE LIVES, win or lose, good years, bad years and everything in between), just saying. Keep it away from me. Because seriously, I'm not very nice when I'm pissed off.

See this is why I am worried about watching this game in public. The nausea is setting in. I might have to lay down before I hit up LL Bean.

Go Ducks!

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

How I spent my first vacation of 2011

(Don't worry. It's not that exciting.)
I cleaned. Not as much as I could have, I mean, that box of recyclables is still in the dining room. And I didn't really dust, per se. But I vacuumed, and I steam-mopped, and cleaned the kitchen and bathrooms, and completely overhauled the closet. That's the big one. I now officially have absolutely nothing in terms of clothing (but the Goodwill sure does..). Organized shoes, sweaters, sweatshirts, tshirts, I even vacuumed in there! Crazy.

I made sure to nap daily (which I still have hopes to do after I write this) and I also really considered blogging. Which I have to do now or I won't do at all. Why is it such a block for me, I wonder? I've lost all readership (and frankly it wasn't that much to begin with). I shopped a lot too. Pretty much failed at it, but I sure tried.

I need a coat. I have a winter work coat (it's huge but I am going to eek every last cent out of the $50 I paid for it three years ago, by God), but I don't have a jacket. Like a coat you'd wear with Levis or on a Saturday or something. I want a barn coat but Instant Gratification Girl can't seem to find one in the stores. If I had one more day of vacation I'd drive (the hell) out to Cornelius and look in the Coastal Farm and Ranch because I bet they'd have one. I still should look at the Burlington Coat Factory (that place stresses me out), but how does that help me RIGHT NOW? It doesn't (mostly because I have to be somewhere this evening and I would rather nap than be warm).

I went to Ikea and bought nothing, went to the mall and bought nothing, went to Bridgeport and bought nothing, went to the Fred Meyer and bought nothing, went to the Trader Joe's and bought green beans, and went to the DSW and bought nothing. So besides Saturday's sweater extravaganza (which was like forever ago so it totally doesn't count), I bought beans. That's it.

I also went and met Becky and Mark (hi Becky!) for a bit at the Broadway last night. And I have dinner tonight on the east side (good Lord), so, you know, I've been somewhat social.

The cold snap (dry, cold, sunny) ended and now it's back to rain and 40 degrees. God I hate January. And February, too, except that pitchers and catchers report so there is some kind of brief glimmer of hope.

So yeah. That's pretty much it. Cutting this short due to limited nap time, and plus I don't want to like over-exert myself. Or shock any of you due to this being the second time in a week that I've blogged.

Happy Wednesday. I guess.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Resolving to Resurface

Wooooooow. I just spent like 45 minutes reading (scanning) old posts from 2010. Why? Because I needed some inspiration. Like I was thinking I need to blog for Pete's sake since I haven't in almost a month, but I STILL don't have anything to say, and I was thinking, Hmm, maybe I'll do sort of a summary of 2010. Because of my failing retention, I had go read what I actually DID all last year. And you know what? All I did was bitch about rain and talk about work and bitch about money.

But I did do some other things, like get in a fender-bender that caused much strife fighting with the insurance company and then dealing with the piece of garbage they gave me as a rental car. And have my purse break on me in the middle of the Quizno's and then having Nordstrom give me a full refund for it after a year. And then I went to Palm Springs and Cabo San Lucas and eastern Oregon, so it's not like I'm not getting out.

Anyway, it's the new year, and I guess I'm going to start by saying, besides this being the best time of my life (Ducks in the National Championship)(like I have to explain), the new year is always a good time to take stock in what you have and what you think you should do and be in the coming year. Right? I still have a job, and I hope to keep it again this year, and I still have a car that runs great and will be paid off in less than two years, I still have a great place to live despite the fact that when it's 25 degrees outside it's 30 degrees inside and it takes forever to get warm, but it's convenient and affordable and has plenty of room for the kits to run around in.

Speaking of that, I have (again, I noticed) extended the new year's weekend into a six day weekend. Meaning I go back to work next Thursday. I have way too much vacation accrued. So my plan is (and it's Saturday today, right? Because I keep thinking it's Sunday) to clean and organize the living shit out of this place in the coming days. I really believe I'm going to do it, too. I mean, for sure I know I'll tackle the rest of the closet. There is stuff up on those shelves I haven't looked at in three years and that doesn't even fit anymore, so why not get rid of it? And I know I'll vacuum, and clean the bathrooms. So I can totally do this and feel good about starting out the year on a good note.

Right now I'm unwinding from a day of successful sweater shopping (seriously, nothing in my closet fits) and prepping myself for a possible trip to Ikea or DSW tomorrow, and I'm feeling pretty good about the year ahead. I'll do a Mexico trip in April, and maybe a desert run in the summer, or maybe the east coast in the late summer. Broadening my horizons by baby steps. I'm optimistic.

So change is good, and I think one of the changes I'll be making this year (or month anyway) is to try to be a little bit more faithful to TtheD. I'm sure you all have missed me. I apologize for this post, because it's obvious I'm out of practice.

Happy New Year to the faithful and loyal ~ may all your hopes for the new year ring true!