Wednesday, October 29, 2008

blue peaches for you

Yesterday I cast my vote for the next Top Gun flight school candidate. I sure hope he's a maverick. (Wait, does that mean Sarah Palin is Goose? because she's about as intelligent as one. I wish she would go back to Alaska and sit on a rotten egg)

Just to be clear, I voted for Obama. How could I not pick the candidate whose name rhymes with llama?

We went to the government center downtown and stood in line for about 2 hours. Apparently, there are a lot of other Georgians trying to avoid election day lines. Judging from the gasps and horrified looks on people's faces when they passed through the security line, everyone thought they were being rather crafty. That is, until they looked up to see the line of voters snaking all the way around the gymnasium sized atrium.

Overall, it was a pretty innocuous process thanks to Murakami's The Wind-up Bird Chronicle and my neck gator (it was drafty in there). They had volunteers passing out clipboards with early voter applications, and there were 4 different paperwork checks to make sure we weren't trying to vote in the wrong county. To top it off, there were electronic voting machines, which surprised me considering the archaic nature of most bureaucratic processes around here. But here's something to make you shiver: several of the sample application forms posted on pillars around the line were filled out incorrectly.

Now I'm not one to follow polls (unlike some people I know), partly because there is major potential for addiction (i.e. intravenous anxiety) and the situation will unfold with or without them, but I have to admit, I did try to take a visual poll while we stood in line. It was completely invalid and based purely on what I hope to be true (that metropolitan Georgia is lousy with Obama supporters). I have such a hard time imagining someone voluntarily choosing McCain that I could only pick out a few likely suspects.

I thought my dad would be among the riff-raff, but when I spoke to him the other day he informed me that he had not one but two Obama signs in his yard. Keep in mind this is coming from a Persian Gulf War veteran and two time Bush supporter. My confidence in the tractability of Republicans waned a bit last night when my grandmother said, "well I didn't vote for Obama!" She's a pretty good example of the small town southern voting pool that is afraid of Obama's inexperience and his talk of socialism, which my grandmother says she "just can't have."

Let's hope most of America (at least the fake part) doesn't mind Obama's crazy talk.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

over the hill and under the platform

Last Wednesday we set out on an 8 day, 7 night extended stay in NYC. Our trip was originally intended for two objectives: charrow's portfolio review and an apartment hunting marathon. Objective number two was abandoned because we have one foot in the door of a great sublet in Park Slope. We're just waiting for the co-op board to finish letting their dogs chew on our application and welcome us with their all-powerful arms so we can nail down at least one of the many unknowns in this move.

Here's a compilation of our activities in the land of diesel jeans traveling at breakneck speeds and labyrinthine train stations:

1 incredible brunch at the farm (chicken apple sausage, home fries, and greens)
2 missed train stops
12 overpriced diet cokes
1 chaperoned trip to the Park Slope Food Co-op
19 poll updates per hour, care of a very dedicated Barry supporter
1 early breakfast at egg (runny scrambled eggs, best toast I've ever had, and hash browns in the shape of an ice cream scoop that were crispy and peppery)
1 walk to Prospect Park
1 trip to the Guggenheim
1 disgruntled charrow after her 8 hour day of schmoozing and portfolio pony show
5 additional bank/credit card/stock statements sent to the co-op board to back up the notarized financial statement in our original submission
2 very patient hosts
1 compost barrel obtained by Ben (and several compost lessons)
3 tablespoons of fresh sage hand picked for Ester's tasty mushroom soup
1 borrowed vest, hat, and scarf that kept me from freezing in the "fall" weather
1 skillfully pulled espresso shot at Joe the Art of Coffee on WaverlyPlace
2 tarot card readings from Madame Bloom
1 hilarious improv show at the UBC
12 minutes whispering in the lobby of Trump tower
1 extremely attentive cat-sitter
2 hours gorging ourselves on spanish tapas and Estrella beer (wine & almond drinks for other parties)
1 trip to Beacon's closet
1 cappuccino from Gorilla Coffee and at least an hour of bench warming out front
1 creaky but surprisingly comfortable air mattress
1 harried scramble to the airport to catch an earlier flight because our original flight was cancelled

(Clearly we were there for too long because the list goes on)

While charrow didn't get hired on the spot and we came no closer to discovering the fate of our living situation, I'm going to label the trip a success. This is not to say there weren't bouts of anxiety. New York is a huge shock to the system after spending 2 sluggish years in the south, and I'm still floundering on the job front, but I'll save that discussion for another post. For now, I'll say I'm 85% excited, 13% fiscally anxious, and 2% in dire need of a shower.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

going off the deep end (of the bed)

Anyone who's ever claimed to want the life of a cat has never had to lay around for a week. I'm here to tell you, it's boring. No matter how many great books, magazines, blogs, twitters (I usually boycott twitter, but I've started reading ester's because it's hilarious) there are to read, and no matter how many NPR podcasts there are to listen to, it all gets old. "Boo hoo," you say? Sad for me to be so inundated with free time? Don't make me sideswipe you with my good arm.

Yesterday the caginess and discomfort reached disastrous proportions. After a few meltdowns (wasting precious NPR and New Yorker time), I sat down in my orange chair and stared out at the beautiful October weather like a sanatorium patient. My thoughts ranged from appreciation for the light breeze to an intense desire for a torrential downpour. I figured if it was stormy, I wouldn't feel like a complete waste of space.

Wrong. It's rained for most of the day, and I still came close to throwing myself down the stairs this morning. But the Sauce kept me company this afternoon and things are looking up. She made me the best omelet ever for lunch, we read a few debate commentaries, watched some Friends, and now we're about to make an Indian curry for dinner.

So, my friends, if you're ever laid up for more than a few days, you can expect to have at least one short-circuit and a very, very sore butt.

Monday, October 6, 2008

same day, different napping position

You know those berries that splooge tarry skid marks all over the sidewalk when they start to decay and/or get stepped on? Prune juice tastes like that skid mark in liquid form, but I'll drink it every hour on the hour if it keeps this from happening again.

As I said in an email to a friend, "if I stand up for more than 15 or 20 minutes, my fingers turn into even bigger sausages and my arm feels like that crazy make-up lady from drew carey is sitting on it. " (is her name Mimi? sorry, I somehow missed the drew carey train) Sometimes I don't even have to get up to make my hand explode. Like right now; I can't tell what position my fingers are in unless I look over at the stubby impostors.

Not much changes when you spend all day on the bed with your arm above your heart (when will it stop being so swollen??). The cats sleep, Ira Glass lulls me to sleep, and I take pictures of the same 3 things (4 if you count meals).

Sunday, October 5, 2008

a hairy introduction

Jo and her new rescued cinnamon husky "Masa" came over last night for dinner and a movie. We watched "Shower," which is a great Chinese comedy if you're in the mood for subtitles. The cats were less than enthused.

Sorry, the pics are a little dark, but you get the idea. And yes, that is a shaved husky. The geniuses at Petco did it without asking because they were too lazy to spot-shave his mats.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

taking matters into my own hands

CONTENT WARNING: What you are about to read is embarrassing and contains graphic imagery pertaining to the subject of poo. You may not be able to look me in the eye when you're done reading this, but hey, if Oprah can have a show about it, I can write about it.

There's one important thing the battery of nurses failed to mention about general anasthesthia: it can cause constipation. Do you know what else makes you constipated? Codeine. It also makes you itchy, which is why I was reading the side effects pamphlet Thursday night, and when I came across the word constipation, I thought to myself, huh, I guess I haven't done that in awhile.

Friday (henceforth known as the longest day of my life), as I ate my breakfast, I felt the familiar churning of a movement, as I shall call it. I finished my cliff bar and went in to the bathroom. An hour later, I was sweating from the effort and saying things like "I don't know what to do; it just won't come out" as the Sauce periodically checked on me from the other side of the door. I finally came out of the bathroom drenched and trembling. Charrow called the orthopedic number and they took a message. We called my mom and she told me I was having a panic attack and that I just needed to relax (the first of many times I would hear that throughout the day). Pacified by her assessment, I went back to the bathroom while Charrow tried phoning my orthopedist again. They routed her to my doctor's assistant who said we should try getting laxatives.

So I sat in the bathroom until Charrow came back with 2 different kinds of laxatives. The dignity seal was tampered with when she had to open the door to hand me the goods. She instructed me to take the "stool softener" and wait. If that didn't work, I was supposed to drink half a bottle of lemon flavored magnesium citrate. An hour later, I'd finished the entire bottle and still, nothing.

Our next instruction was to get an enema. This is where it starts to get dicey. Remember what I said about the dignity seal? I'll spare you the details, but I will say that it will take us both awhile to get over that one.

Sadly our story doesn't end there. Next up: suppositories! The assistant said that the instructions on the box won't say to, but it's important to hold the suppository in place so that your muscles don't push it back out before it has time to dissolve. So I was instructed to lay on the floor, insert, and relax. I was only slightly consoled by my ability to field this one solo.

Three failed suppositories later (recommended daily dose =1), I really started to freak out. My next action can only be attributed to chemical imbalance, abdominal distress, 5 hours in the bathroom, and shear panic.

I don't know how to describe what I did (well I do, but I just can't bring myself to do it), but I can let you figure it out using the old adage, "If you want something done right, you have to do it yourself."

I will be scarred for a very, very long time.

If for some reason you need surgery the requires not one but two contributors to constipation, I strongly recommend taking a proactive approach to your movements. Get some Metamucil and never give in if they tell you to try an enema.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

a soggy day

What's worse than soggy Life cereal? Bank managers that don't call you back.

Charrow and I have been trying to pull together the many forms and letters needed for the sublet application for our prospective apartment. Things were moving along nicely (glowing reference letters poured in) until Monday when we stalled out at Bank of America. The branch manager put in a request for my reference letter last Thursday. As of Monday, it still hadn't been processed. We left the bank Monday afternoon disgruntled and stressed out about our dwindling timeline.

Today I called the bank and the manager just happened to answer the regular customer service line (her direct office phone must be routed to some financial dungeon below the bank's safe). She told me she had to check the fax machine and that she would call me back. A word to the wise: never agree to a call back for a task that can be accomplished in 45 seconds.

About 30 minutes before the bank closed, I made Charrow take me there to wave my ace bandaged arm in someone's face until a reference letter materialized. The manager swooped over when we walked in and she said, "Oh I haven't forgotten about you! See, here's my note to call you right here! We don't have the letter, but we're going to call and check on it right now!"

Tell me, how was I supposed to know she hadn't forgotten about me when she never called me back?? I 'm horrible at following through on my bark, so there was no arm waving, but we did leave with a freshly faxed 4 sentence letter stating that I do indeed have 2 accounts with Bank of America. I hope the co-op board frames it when they're done reviewing our application.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Day 2 = Twice the pain

Today started out with breakfast in bed. I tried to drink my usual cup of coffee, but nausea set in about halfway through the mug. Percoset and caffeine may not go so well together.

However, I think the big P will be well suited for any one of the 17 cookies that came in my cookie gift basket (care of my dad and his wife).
The only other excitement thus far today was the arrival of the Sauce's long coveted book about Swedish designer Olle Eksell.