Saturday, December 27, 2003

F-ing Terrific

So, there was some kind of big safety issue with a plane that left Logan headed for Chicago today. They had to make an emergency landing and jump out of the exit row doors (and that woman probably got Big Air just like in the picture the airlines provide...).

We fly out of Logan tomorrow, a.m. Eeeeee. And, being freakishly tall, we always sit in the exit row if possible. Double eeeeeee.

Now, if there is some sort of emergency, I would like to note that my method of "helping" others (others other than my traveling companion, the illustrious Sean) is to yell out "Follow me!!!" in the most encouraging of tones before leaping from the plane like a mad lemming.

Planes belong in the sky. I'm just sayin'. Hope ya'lls will all stay there, too.

Now, I have to get some sleep. If I can stop with the "Eeeeeee" for that long.

Wednesday, December 24, 2003


It's Christmas Eve.

Sean is in the office, frantically wrapping gifts.


Merry merry, everyone!

Monday, December 22, 2003

Making Cookies With Sean

Redpanda: Hmm. The icing hurts my hands. Maybe you should decorate.

Sean: (eagerly) Ok!

Time passes.

Redpanda: Err...what happened to this bell with the black dots and the green ringer?

Sean: (Holding cookie up to face) It's not a bell. It's a nose! And it has hairs, blackheads, and a booger.

Redpanda: Err...oh. What about that black tree with no top?

Sean: There was a horrible fire---

Redpanda: What happened to these snowmen? Their arms and legs are broken off...

Sean: We have some heroic veterans in our midsts. Landmines are a tragic thing...

Redpanda: What about this snowman?

Sean: I tried to make a mouth for him, but it got all messed up. So now he looks like a zombie. So he is an undead zombie snowman. Those are his guts coming out.

Redpanda: (Trying to look over Sean's shoulder) What is that one you're working on now?

Sean: No!!! This one is a surprise!!! You can't see it till I'm done!!!

And so, the saga continues....
The Cost of Pride

"Have I got news for you!", my recruiter exclaimed. "You're getting a 38% raise in salary!!!"

"Er...", I faltered, frantically plugging numbers into my desktop calculator, "that wasn't what we discussed before..."

It was all she could do, she insisted, so I darted across the street to her office to play hardball, far too nonthreatening in my tan cordoroy skirt, my soft ivory sweater, my chunky suede boots. Deep breaths. I assured myself over and over: you are worth more than that....

There was no hardball to be played. We went round and round for just this side short of an hour. "My hands are tied", she explained gently. "Company policy just doesn't allow for promotions of that magnitude. We had to hold a special meeting just to make you this offer at all. The executive vice-president had to sign off on it."

I blinked back the disappointment, composed myself. "But surely, they can make an exception? With a case such as mine, where I was so overqualified for my previous position, and so underpaid for my qualifications..."

She shook her head sympathetically. There were other very qualified candidates, she went on; there were still.

I interrupted gently, tossed my hair gamely. "They don't want those candidates. They want me. They wanted me from halfway through the interview. It's a great fit..."

"I know that," she countered. "That's why we went to so much trouble to make you the offer at all. But the fact is, there's nothing else I can do. The company just isn't going to change their policy."

"But," I began, "What sense does it make to penalize me for already being an employee?"

"Why did you take a position you were so overqualified for?"

"It was waiting tables to me. I was doing it until I found something I liked."

"And now you have. And it's a fabulous opportunity. You are going to help build a twelve million dollar program from the ground up. This is a pilot program. The entire country will be watching what you do with it. You have a chance to stand out, to be recognized. Are you going to give that up for a few thousand dollars? For 40 bucks a week, a little over a dollar an hour?"

In my head, I was staring at the floor, fidgeting, biting my lip, kicking my feet against the table, muttering "Not fair!!!". Outwardly, I was cool and composed, the graduated-degreed recruit who hasn't been snatched up by a headhunter only because nothing she likes has materialized yet.

She was right, of course. It wasn't a huge difference, dollar-wise. But it was enough to make me, in my mind at least, go from Valuable Potential Candidate to Bargain-basement Closeout. It was enough to change my mood from elated to deflated. It was more than enough to singe the hell out of my pride.

I'll sign the offer letter, of course. It's still a decent offer, still great fodder for my resume, still a job I can rock at.

But now, I just have one more reason to resent all those months spent doing the mindless data entry. Because they fucked me over. Somehow, because of corporate red tape, they managed to fuck me over, even on my way out the door.

Thursday, December 18, 2003


I got a job!!!

Not a crappy data entry job, but a Real Grown-Up Job where me soon-to-be supervisor talked behavior change theory with me during the interview! Yay!!!

The hours are slightly less than desirable, owing to the fact that my job basically entails outreach to working people, who don't really want to hear from me at work. And unfortunately, it's with the same company and in the same godforsaken South Shore city of Quincy.

But, it's a brand-new department, a brand new program that I'll be helping to design and build. And the best part, if I may be so bold and materialistic, is the 50% hike in salary. (Which perhaps could have been more, if I hadn't blurted out what I thought was a too-large number and received an eager affirmative reply...Dammit!)

So, again, yaaay!!! I knew it was going to be a good day when the shuttle from the T to my office was waiting for me and the driver handed me chocolate.

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

Long Time No Blog

I haven't had much to say, lately.

I'm not sure why. I mean, things have been happening in my life, just as things always happen in my life. I've been keeping up with everyone else's blogs. I've just been pointedly neglecting my own.

You'd think I'd have some sort of triumphant return, a bunch of profound profundities strung together for your reading pleasure.

Nah. Just lots of miscellaneous drivel.

So with that, let's be on with it.

I'm terribly worried about the fate of Bravo's Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. It's the only TV show I watch. And now, it's been purchased by the evil gods of Network TV. I fear it will meet with the same untimely demise as MTV's The State, or worse, it will be aired all cleaned up for family viewing without a double entendre to be found.

Saddam has been captured. I do not care. Really. I don't think I could possibly give less of a shit. If anything, it has left me deeply disturbed for reasons I can't quite put my fingers on.
One of my big "issues" with the capture and resulting media dog and pony show is that I despise how the media has made him a scapegoat for so many of the problems in the Middle East. C'mon, people, Saddam's rise to power came about because of that region's economic and cultural conditions. He's not a demigod. And there will be a new Saddam as soon as all is said and done, unless some semblance of stability can be attained. (Which isn't going to happen. Peace in the Middle East? Is that anything like the Loch Ness Monster???) Geeze peeze, have all these people learned nothing from Heathers??

Not to steal Sean's thunder, (but then he IS the one who stopped blogging, isn't he???) but we have a new addition to our little family--a brand-spankin' new Volkswagen Passat! Unfortunately, because Massachusetts is a state of profound fucked-uppedness, we do not have the actual car in our possession yet. It's still residing at the dealer, waiting patiently for our tags to be procured. But I'm sure he/she will be very happy and enjoy many, many happy years in our company. I'll let you know what his/her name is as soon as I get to know him/her well enough to bestow a name upon him/her.

I actually had a good interview the other day. Not that anything will come of it, or that it will pan out in any way, but it was nice to have a good experience for a change. I spend so many hours in the drudgery of my crap job that I tend to forget that I actually do have intelligent things to say, that I actually am amazingly qualified for certain positions, and that companies would be damn lucky to woo me enough to snag me on their payroll. So there.

I'm still gearing up for the holi-daze. I've got a few more gifts to buy, but I think I'm in pretty good shape. My parents were good enough to mail me all, or at least the greater part, of the ornaments I've been collecting since early childhood. They're just great--so many memories! Some of 'em are more than a little shabby, and most are definitely not something I'd choose now (there's an abundance of rocking-horse and teddy bear-themed ornaments...), but I can't bear to part with them! So the tree is now completely decked out and blinking festively.

I've got a million plans in the upcoming weeks. There's picking up the car, the Return of the King on Weds., picking some Yankee Swap gifts, the Nutcracker, the art exhibit I wanted to see, meeting up with Fady when he comes to town, a bunch of miscellaneous parties and gatherings, and then we're off to sunny (with any luck!) Florida for a visit with Sean's dad.

If the world ever stops spinning, maybe I'll get a chance to blog again.