Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Soy Sauce.

Since buying a home, we are trying to operate under the "Lots of Crap is Going to Go Way, Waaay Wrong" principle, or LOCIGTGWWW for short. This seems the smart way to go. The thing is, the stuff that tends to go wrong tends to be stuff no one would ever in a bazillion years have come up with as a Potential Thing to Go Way, Waay Wrong. So, really, in some wacky alternative universe, one could say that we have been enjoying Surprise after Surprise. Whee! Surprise! Whee!


Lat Thursday night, we were rushing around our old apartment like the proverbial beheaded chickens in an attempt to get all the crap Sean left in it OUT and get it cleaned up in time to perhaps get a refund of a week's rent. (As our fellow Bostonians can likely attest, this is HUNDREDS of dollars and totally worth a good amount of effort!) When it became obvious that there was no earthly way that this would be accomplished in a single evening, Sean relented and made the decision to take part of the next day off in order to help me finish the job. We would get it all finished up in the morning, then he would head off to work for a few hours before we had to catch our flight to Maryland for my family reunion. Stellar plan! Right?

Enter our good friend the LOCIGTGWWW principle.

After a busy morning of scrubbing interspersed with many, many trips up and down approximately 34 flights of stairs to load items into our trusty VW's, Gunther and Gustav; we were finally nearing completion. Sean and I were making the second-to-last trip downstairs from our sparkling clean ex-apartment when It happened.

I was carrying a bucket, a mop, and a brand-new half-gallon container of Kikkomen Light Soy Sauce (Sean really likes his sticky rice). Somehow, negotiating the stairs must have become too much for the little bit of coordination my limbs possess. The bucket tipped and the soy sauce flew through the air; gracefully tumbling over and over until it landed, conveniently enough, on the landing.

Sean holds that it sounded sort of like this: "CRASH! CRASH! Glugglugglugglugglug"

Soy Sauce. Oh, the soy sauce. You have never seen such soy sauce. There was soy sauce on the ceiling, on the walls, on the neighbors' cooler and fishing rods. There was soy sauce on the windowsill, on the porch, on the radiator. It coursed down the stairs, puddled on the floor, ran down the walls in great brown rivulets. It was a sight to behold. I can liken it only to the bloody walls scene in The Shining. Except, you know, much more Asian in nature. Although those little girls from The Shining do sort of remind me of the little girls from Mothra.

To his credit, Sean laughed good-naturedly for a good ten minutes before we set about scrubbing the floors and walls till the paint was coming off and repositioning itself elsewhere. So then we had to clean that up, too.

For the record, he did not make it to work that day. And we did make our flight, just barely. And as for whether or not you can still smell the soy sauce? I'm not entirely sure.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Rough Morning

Scene 1: New House Dining Room

SEAN enters the dining room where REDPANDA sits at the table drinking coffee. SEAN is looking very forlorn and is wearing only a T-shirt.

REDPANDA: "Honey...what's wrong?"

SEAN: (*sighs*) "I can't find my glasses. Or my pants."

REDPANDA: Laughs so hard coffee comes out nose

End Scene 1

Scene 2: New House Kitchen

REDPANDA enters the kitchen where SEAN is getting a glass of water. SEAN has just been watching a Tivo'ed episode of The Daily Show.

SEAN: "Omigod. This was SO FUNNY. Listen to what happened on The Daily Show."

REDPANDA: (*grinning*) "What?"

SEAN: "Well, there was this whole thing about the Republicans shutting the Democrats out of the Congressional Hearings. So they had to set up in a basement somewhere, with folding chairs! Anyway, they are showing all this, and then they focus in on this woman, and she is breastfeeding. I mean, you know I support a woman's right to breastfeed, but still! It was a Congressional Hearing!"

REDPANDA: *blinks* "So, what was funny, exactly...?"

SEAN: "She was breastfeeding!"

REDPANDA: (*Getting annoyed*) "Well, her right to do so is protected by law..."

SEAN: "Yeah, but isn't that kind of...unprofessional? In a Congressional Hearing?"

REDPANDA: "Look, I'm getting angry. What is the big deal? She was FEEDING her BABY. How is that funny?"


REDPANDA: "I get it. I know your knee-jerk reaction is to be amused. But for crying out loud, she was doing what was BEST FOR HER BABY. Would you be laughing if she had pulled out a bottle? Would it even have made The Daily Show?"

SEAN: "You take things too seriously."

REDPANDA: "You don't take things seriously enough. Now the freaking Daily Show is half-assedly putting down breastfeeding? Are you kidding me?!?"

SEAN: *storms out of room in a huff*

REDPANDA: *wishes she could storm out of room in a huff but has to stay in room to cut up strawberries instead*

End Scene 2

Scene 3: Inside REDPANDA'S car.

*Cellphone rings*

REDPANDA digs around for cell, shifting and braking the entire time, nearly missing a suddenly stopping car. She finds it, snaps it open, and holds it to her ear.


CELLPHONE: *Silence*

REDPANDA throws phone back onto passenger seat and exits rotary onto highway.

*Cellphone rings again*


CELLPHONE: *Silence*

REDPANDA calls last incoming number. It is SEAN'S cellphone. SEAN answers.

SEAN: "Hello?"

REDPANDA: "Hey. What's up?"

SEAN: "I have a flat tire."

REDPANDA: "What? You do? How?"

SEAN: "I dunno. Maybe I ran against the curb? It's a big hole in the side. Where are you?"

REDPANDA: "I'm on the highway. Sorry."

SEAN: "S'ok."

REDPANDA: "Go catch the bus. There were people waiting when I went past."

SEAN: "Yeah, Ok. I'll go do that."

End Scene 3

We can only conclude from this performance that SEAN would have been better off staying in bed and fondling his lamp today.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005


While driving through the I-93 South tunnel on the way to work yesterday, I saw a couple of police cars with the slow flashing lights that usually mean they are escorting someone. From what I could see, it was a huge semi. Geez, I wondered, I wonder what that semi is carrying? Must be some sort of hazardous material.... As I approached, I could see that the cargo space was just loaded with piles and piles of something. What could it be? I craned my neck to see as I approached, hoping for a glimpse of the scary hazardous material that demanded not one, but two police escorts. As I finally zipped past, I saw the deadly cargo....onions. Bag after red net bag of giant head-sized onions. I never knew that onions were such an onery vegetable that a police escort (or two) is required to ensure their safety. Live and learn.

The boxes are slowly, sloooooowly dissipating. Slowly. The boxes. There are still so many of them. In the words of one of our gazillion-dollar movers: "You guys have a lot of stuff!". Yes, we suffer from the deadly yuppie disease of Stuff Collection. It is true. If I had my druthers (what exactly is a druther?), I would own every vase Crate and Barrel has ever offered. Yes, I know that they are re-released every year in "new colors" when it's just the same old vase. I don't care. I want all the colors. I want melon, salmon, orange, and pink. I want aqua as well as turquoise and sky and teal.

Our new dining room table from Jordan's arrived yesterday morning. This is the dining room table we have had unending dreams and fantasies about since we first glimpsed it, but put off buying until we "owned a house". Well, we went out on the evening of the closing with a "today is The Day!" kind of attitude and bought it. It is a thing of beauty. Unfortunately, the thing I didn't take into consideration is that Jordan's is, well, rather large. Our dining room, not so much. So the table that looked regular sized in the showroom looks, well, friggin' ENORMOUS in our dining room. If we keep the built-in leaf tucked away and seat it as a rectangular-shaped 6-seater it works, but if we make it a giant sqare 8-seater (which is why we fell in love with the thing in the first place), it looks silly. I nearly wept. Maybe it will be better when the boxes dissipate further. But I fear that our dining room will look disappointingly like a Van Gogh.

When the alarm bleated us awake this morning, I promptly rolled over and hit the "snooze" button. Sean, on the other hand, began earnestly fondling our lamp, as if it and not the clock radio were the offending item; and furthermore as if fondling an offending item rather than slapping it were the "correct" response. This caused me to cackle like a crone and declare him a "Lamp Fondler". He is, you know. He fondles lamps.

Since we don't have nearly enough to do at home this weekend, we thought it would be a good idea to leave town. So we're leaving town. Actually, it's a case of Super Lousy Timing, but my family reunion is this weekend, and I desperately wanted to go; house or no house. It's one of the few times that I actually get to see members of my family who have chosen in-laws as their holiday stops (bastards!). Plus, my cousin who lives on a sailboat in the Caribbean will actually be there. And let it be said that if I lived on a sailboat in the Caribbean, I would be in rural Maryland about as often as she is, which is to say pretty freaking rarely. So, in essence, we will spend the weekend feasting on such southern delicacies as Watergate Salad and Kentucky Fried Chicken. And I will come back with an accent. This is nearly unavoidable.

Let it be noted that I probably misspelled "onery" when referring to the mighty onion as an "onery" vegetable. However, spellcheck's best offered solution was to replace "onery" with "Henry". Fuck you, spellcheck.

Friday, June 17, 2005

24 Hours of Closing Day Fun

...A Timeline of Magical Events...

Wednesday, June 15th (The day before Closing Day)

8:45 pm - Redpanda and Sean decide to procrastinate all packing, subvert all stress, and go see a movie. High Tension is playing.

9:05 pm - In the car en route to movie, Sean's cellphone rings. It's Redpanda and Sean's attorney, Good Lawyer, calling to inform them that he had just received messages from people on the west coast saying that all was in place to close on Friday! Redpanda's eyes grow to the size of saucers. Sean pats her knee reassuringly.

11:05 pm - Sean and Redpanda leave High Tension. Overcome with stress and gore, Redpanda weeps most of the way home. Sean pats her knee sympathetically.

12:00 am - Sleep, glorious sleep.

6:35 am - Mathilda begins her morning ritual of Stomping on Redpanda's Bladder While Licking any Exposed Redpanda Parts. Redpanda rolls onto her side and goes back to sleep.

7:35 am - Tivy begins his morning ritual of Jumping on the Bed and Staring Until Sleepers Become Creeped Out and Fill Dish. Redpanda rolls the other way and ignores him.

8:45 am - Redpanda nudges Sean. Reluctantly, the two clamber out of bed.

9:00 am - Sean begins calling All The Powers That Be.

9:10 am - Snag #1. Power That Be the Provider of Money is complaining that Power That Be the Provider of Insurance has not worded Important Things correctly. Sean hurriedly calls Insurance Power and indicates such.

9:11 am - Sean is assured by Power of Insurance that all is rectified and will be faxed presently. He sighs with relief.

10:00 am - Power of Money calls to indicate that Power of Insurance is a stupidhead and still did not say his name right. Sean calls Power of Insurance and goes over problem again. Power of Insurance assures him that they will immediately rectify situation. Sean brushes his hands together proudly in jubilant dismissal.

10:35 am - Power of Money calls to inform Sean that Power of Insurance is not his friend anymore because he still is not saying his name right. Sean calls Power of Insurance, and, speaking in progressively slower and slower sentences, explains exactly What the Fuck is needed. Power of Insurance nods gamely.

11:00 am - Redpanda and Sean meet Sexist Realtor (Did I forget to tell you THAT story?) at New House To Be for Official Walk-Through. They see that the deck is finished, as agreed. Yay! All will surely be well!

11:01 am - Sean looks under the deck and sees that there is still approximately 27 tons of concrete debris under deck, which was supposed to be removed. Redpanda sighs and indicates that he should take a picture of it.

11:15 am - Sean realizes he has forgotten the pliers he needs to get into the attic and ensure that Stormy did not flood said attic. Redpanda drives home to retrieve them.

11:30 am - Stormy seems to have spared the attic. Redpanda and Sean head home while Sexist Realtor begins frantically making phone calls.

11:40 am - Redpanda and Sean arrive home. Power of Money calls again to say that they think Power of Insurance might be their best friend again. Good Lawyer calls to say that he is running around doing things. Sean tells him about the 27 tons of concrete. Good Lawyer says: "Shit."

11:45 am - Redpanda begins drinking Butterscotch Schnapps.

12:00 pm - Redpanda and Sean leave for the Gas Station (to get gas), the Bank (to get cashiers' checks) and the Middlesex Court House (to get a house).

12:55 pm - Redpanda and Sean arrive at Middlesex Court House and immediately begin signing things.

1:00 pm - It is noticed that, on more than half of the mortgage documents, Sean is referred to not by his first and last names, but by: "Sean Sean". Redpanda suggests that he needs to explore a career in hip hop and perhaps his own clothing line.

1:10 pm - Redpanda and Sean sit down to a round table with 7 other people. They sign more things.

1:15 pm - Someone brings up the 27 tons of concrete. The sellers' attorney, Evil Slimy Fat Lawyer of Doom, acts as if this is a rhetorical issue. He continues to do so until Sean pulls out Knife the Mac, who has a series of photos of 27 tons of concrete. Evil Lawyer seems flustered and pulls out copy of signed contract. Signed contract states: "Contingent upon removal of all debris, including construction debris under deck, without limitation." He concedes that this is pretty clear-cut. All nine people begin to speak about the 27 tons of concrete.

1:20 pm - Bucktoothed Seller #1 says that "the deck cost them a lot more than they thought it would". Redpanda struggles to keep from strangling her with her own teeth while coming up with a nice way of saying "That is not our fucking problem, whore."

1:25 pm - Bucktoothed Seller #2 (I swear to you, they were brother and sister and should not be procreating!) says that he "already conceded $3500 and is not willing to concede any more". Redpanda begins entertaining fantasies of his head on a spike, Braveheart-style. She smiles indulgently and tries to find a nice way of saying "Do you want a fucking cookie, fucktard? That is SO NOT THE POINT. YOU SIGNED A FUCKING CONTRACT." Her voice is shaking so she does not make head on a spike fantasy a reality.

1:26 pm - Sensing danger, Sexist Realtor leads Redpanda and Sean to a corner away from the table. Redpanda immediately commences with Crazy Insane Arm-Flapping of Anger. She explains that she would like to walk away now and not buy Bucktoothed Sellers #'s 1 and 2's house. Sean and Sexist Realtor smile indulgently until she stops. Then, they lead her back to the table, where Sexist Realtor says: "We'll proceed." Redpanda's head on a spike fantasies grow more vivid. Also, many more papers are signed. Many of them say: "Sean Sean".

1:40 pm - Evil Slimy Fat Lawyer of Doom is making small talk with the sellers and laughing jovially. Redpanda hopes he dies.

2:00 pm - Bucktoothed Sellers shake hands and leave. Redpanda wishes that she had poison fingers.

2:05 pm - Evil Slimy Fat Lawyer of Doom leaves, as well. Redpanda considers following him and pushing him down the stairs. But there are more papers to sign.

2:10 pm - Good Lawyer jumps up to file the Deed with the Registry of Deeds, conveniently located directly behind the table.

2:15 pm - Sexist Realtor and Bucktoothed Sellers' Realtor begin talking and laughing about how the sellers completely had not lived up to their end of the contract. So obvious! Ha ha! Ha ha! Hi-fucking-larious! Redpanda ponders that in her next life, it might be fun to be a carrion bird and pluck their flesh from their bones.

2:35pm - Good Lawyer returns with the Deed. Redpanda and Sean now own the house! As well as a 27 ton pile of concrete.

3:00 pm - On the drive home, Redpanda admits to Sean that she finally conceded and didn't force the concrete issue because she realizes that the Sellers need the money for dental work. Sean laughs maniacly.

6:35 pm - Hot Monkey Sex on floor of new house.

7:30 pm - Sushi Boat is ordered.

8:15 pm - More sushi is ordered.

The End.

Until the rest.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

In Closing...

Everyone keeps asking me when our closing is. See, that's the thing. You are supposed to know when your closing is. It is rather important within all the Homebuying Rigamorole to actually be able to show up for your closing. And in order to do that, you should know when your closing IS.

I think ours is tomorrow. But no one really seems to be ENTIRELY certain. As of Monday, it could have been Tuesday. As of the previous Friday, it could have been Friday. But then it couldn't be Friday, so it had to be Tuesday or Thursday.

Did I mention that the movers are coming on Saturday? And that the carpenter is coming on Friday to fix the steps so the movers won't fall through them on Saturday?

Sigh. Can someone remind me why we were buying a house, again?

I think it was mostly because we like all the cardboard boxes.

Friday, June 03, 2005

I Don't Feel Like Titling This. Why Don't You?

Back from New Orleans and I miss it already. Living in Boston, I keep forgetting how nice and friendly people are in "other" places. Plus there aren't 3 kinds of hot sauce on the table in any restaurant we frequent here. And here, there should be. We had a delightful time, lots of walking and walking and walking followed by eating and hitting the hot tub, which was followed by drinking and debauchery. But really, when isn't my life chock full of debauchery? Really, I try to engage in Purposeful Debauchery whenever possible.

We did get a chance to hit Nola, the French Quarter version of Emeril's epicurean empire. (Check me out! I'm all alliteratin' all over the place!) It was quite good, lovely food and excellent service without the pretention that usually accompanies lovely food and excellent service. Also, they had cake.

Sean is due to arrive back in the northeast this afternoon, at which time I will commence holding him hostage for a weekend of packing. It seems that we are buying a house in 2 weeks, give or take. And with the buying of the house, it occurs to me, comes the actual moving into the house. This had somehow escaped me until recently. (You mean, not only do I have to BUY and FINANCE and INSURE the damn thing, but I have to get my possessions there as well!? You have GOT to be kidding me.) This is sad because it means yet another weekend swirling away when we are already beginning to feel that we haven't seen much of our friends lately. (Hey, R-Dubs and Alayna--we miss you!) Although, it must be said that I did get a quick Theron fix the other day when he picked my sorry ass up at the airport and chauffeured me back to my apartment. (I rubbed against him to pick up a bit of essence d'Paige and Sylvie.)

Allright, pretties, that's as creative as it gets today.