Sunday, January 29, 2006
A Festival of Random
This week has been an experience in the random side of life. Randomosity.
Random Thievery, Part One:
My mother-in-law bought me two plastic frog garden statues for my birthday last year. They, in themselves, were random. But cute. I put them out on our front porch around Memorial Day when we finally put out some flowers in pots. At first, I sort of worried that someone would steal them, but month after month, nothing happened. The flowers all died and then we brought in all the green plants for the winter, but the frogs and the flower stand stayed out. The frogs started to be my landmark to find our porch when I was pulling into our parking lot, not that it's that hard. Then, this past Thursday, I glanced out the window to tell a friend that she could find our apartment by looking for the frogs on the porch...and they were gone.
It's not that I'm heartbroken, though I am a little sad. It's mostly that it's annoying. I'd actually be happy about it if the person who did it would take the garden frogs on a trip somewhere and send postcards back to me, signed by the frogs, or take pictures of the frogs on vacation, like these guys did with a garden gnome. I really don't think anyone in our building is that creative. I doubt they were taken by someone who absolutely had to have them for their own garden. I have a feeling they'll end up in the garbage somewhere. That pisses me off.
Random Thievery, Part Two
On Friday, I brought a banana to work with me for a late breakfast. Usually I bring my lunch in a somewhat sarcastically overlarge insulated cooler thing, but on Friday my department director was taking me and our intern out to lunch, so I didn't need the giant lunchbox. I brought a plastic cup, a yogurt, a spoon, and a banana. I put the yogurt in the fridge, obviously, and put the spoon and banana in the cup, which I put on the shelf under the counter, in the same place I usually put my lunchbox. I went back to the breakroom about an hour later, and the spoon and cup were sitting on the countertop, no banana in sight. Now, maybe it's just the way that I was raised, but I don't understand how an adult can think it's okay to take someone else's food. Even if you don't know whose food it is, surely you know that it's NOT YOURS. No one's short term memory is so bad that they can forget whether or not they brought an item to work that day.
Being too nice to leave a nasty voicemail for the entire staff but being too stubborn to just let it go, I taped a note to the fridge--written in Sharpie on a full sheet of paper--that said: "Missing: one banana for breakfast. If found, please return to velocibadgergirl." Yesterday, the sweet and adorable cleaning lady came into the office and said she was sorry, that she thought she'd probably thrown my banana away. She found a banana on top of the snack machine, and figured someone had left it there and forgotten about it. I assured her that it wasn't my banana, unless of course someone had stashed it there...in which case it was their fault I lost the banana, not hers. This leads me to two conclusions, both amusing.
A. Someone else at work is thinking, "Dammit! Someone stole my banana! How random!" If we both begin talking about our missing bananas, it'll seem like a veritable crime wave.
B. The person who took my banana stashed it there, figuring they could eat it later. Only they were foiled when the banana was thrown away, and thus were not able to enjoy the spoils of their sneaky-snake behavior. I think I like this conclusion better, just because it has a certain element of poetic justice to it.
All in all, it doesn't really matter. It's not like I was starving to death and needed that banana. It's not like I have blood sugar issues and got sick for lack of food. It's the principle of the thing.
Random Useless Fact
I was born on the 200th anniversary of the discovery of the planet Uranus. Embarrassing name, quirky planet. It sort of evens out.
Random Biology Lesson
Where I work, there is a display window/alcove thing with a pond inside. The pond is nicely landscaped, with rocks and vegetation and such. Inside the alcove live two white and green birds in a cage (cockatiels, maybe?) and some turtles. I thought there was only one turtle, but last night there was an event, and I ran into one of my coworkers in front of the pond. He informed me that there are five turtles living in the alcove, and that sometimes the box turtles come up to the very front, right by the glass, and make sweet turtle love. I figured this was a once-in-awhile thing. However, it seems that the turtles are quite amorous. Today I walked by the alcove and the new security guard was peering in. He asked me if the lizard on the rock was real or a toy. I located it and said that I thought it looked pretty fake. Then I mentioned how supposedly there are five turtles, but I usually can only find one. I saw one sitting on a log, and then my eyes wandered to the front corner and lo and behold...turtle nookie. Two of the box turtles were in the midst of a romantic turtle moment. I just sort of trailed off and hoped the guard didn't notice the turtle tryst. Ah, nature. So beautiful and yet so ripe for somewhat embarrassing moments.
Random Overheard Conversation
Yesterday night, the husband and I went out for a late dinner. There was a pretty long wait at the restaurant, so we were sitting on the benches at the front, waiting for our buzzer thing to light up. At some point, this somewhat whiskey tango chick and her friends came in and sat down next to us. Well, actually, the subject of this random item sat ON me. On my coat, to be truthful. So when I tried to scoot over, I had to pull my coat out from under her. Nice. Anyhow, she and her friends were jabbering on about something, and one of them asked her if she "got it." I didn't catch all the words, but here's the gist. She had just gotten a tattoo. On the back of her neck. And the guy SPELLED IT WRONG. Yeah.
She lifted up her hair and her friend said, "Oh, my God! Oh, my God! Oh, no...just keep your hair down. Just keep it down. Oh, God. Couldn't you see it?"
Tattooed Girl: "No, you can't see it while they're doing it. He can add an A to it."
Tattooed Girl's Friend:"Just keep your hair down."
Unfortunately, our buzzer went off and we went to our table before I could ascertain what the lacking-an-A tattoo said.
Reading: American Gods, by Neil Gaiman. Love it. LOVE IT. Engrossing, engaging, mysterious, just enough action, really good characters, and a good amount of humor. Love. It.
Playing: Speak for Yourself, by Imogen Heap; Happy Songs for Happy People, by Mogwai; One Way Ticket to Hell...and Back, by The Darkness.
Wednesday, January 04, 2006
"We're living Planes, Trains & Automobiles!"
So says my husband, in the midst of his very first business trip, which seems to be going slightly awry. They drove from here to South Carolina on Tuesday, which is somewhere in the neighborhood of an 8-hour trip as far as I know. The "we've checked into our hotel" call just didn't happen and didn't happen, so I finally called to see how things were going, only to find out that they were sitting in a repair shop. The truck apparently lost the use of its fuel pump. They ended up getting a rental car and proceeding to their hotel, and everything seemed to be going somewhat according to plan. Then today, they found out that the truck won't be fixed before Friday, so of course they attempted to extend their reservations for an extra night...and that's when they learned that the hotel was all full for the weekend. He seemed in pretty good spirits when I talked to him, but that may have something to do with the fact that his boss treated him and their other traveling companion to margaritas and Longhorn steak for dinner. Stinker.
This means that my official longest stay at home alone since we moved in together will be extended even further. I suppose it's really quite fitting, seeing how many times I've skipped happily off into the sunset tra-la, tra-lee and left my hapless spouse alone for days at a time. Not that I don't miss him when I'm the one who's away. I do...I just don't usually get lonely while I'm away. These past couple of days, it's just been me and the feline...and he's not exactly a party animal this week, being flea bitten (but recently flea-treated, so fear not) and possibly afflicted with a mild infection that makes one eye sort of watery and boogery. Poor thing. He's going to the vet Friday if he doesn't look more respectable.
Meanwhile, I have pretty big news of my own (as if anyone reads this. Ha!): After all my whining and pity-party-throwing, I managed to score a ticket on that bus after all. I won't say where I work now, because that's just irresponsible...but I can say that it doesn't involve retail, it does involve a pretty respectable salary, and it will allow me to indulge in two of my favorite things--being a science geek and teaching kids in a not-a-traditional-classroom type of setting. It's especially sweet because I've been teaching workshops on an extraordinarily part-time basis at this unnamed place for going on 6 years now, and I truly love the program and the work I've been able to do there.
I started my new job yesterday, and I can say that my brain is very, very full. I know that it won't be perfect, and I'm sure there will be days when I'm frustrated or tired of it, but I think it has the potential to kick ass in a pretty serious way. So, to life...cheers. I will try to make the most of this one.
One of my favorite Christmas scenes EVER:
(which I actually photographed in my own town)
Hippo and tortoise, one year later
Reading: Life, the Universe, and Everything, Douglas Adams
The Art of Discworld, Terry Pratchett & Paul Kidby
Tree: A New Vision of the American Forest, James Balog
Playing: The Legend of Johnny Cash.