Monday, October 25, 2010

Happy Birthday to Me

It's remarkable how time really does move faster when you're a grown-up.  Eventually you also realize that the world doesn't stop to honor another year of your presence on this earth.  Honestly, I barely have the time to stop and notice.  The husband remembered it, so kudos to him.

I guess it's a good sign that I wouldn't know what to put on a birthday list if anybody had asked me to make one.  Eventually I came up with something I really wanted so Dave could get it for me.  We went out for dinner, which is enough party for me.

Unfortunately, the house is still falling apart, or being actively destroyed by kitchen appliances from hell.  But that's another story, shortly to follow.

Dave keeps saying he'll post someday and reclaim his half of this blog.  We'll see if circumstances ever give him the time.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Justin Case

This is Justin Case.  He's been a friend of mine for a long time.  He reminds us to charge our phones, pack a snack, fill the gas tank, check the mail, take our vitamins, lock our windows, unplug the computers during rainstorms.

I invited Justin to come live on our refrigerator for a while so that David could get to know him better.  There was a time when David couldn't hear Justin reminding him to pack his homework the night before, or to put the keys in a predictable and consistent location.  Happily, the two of them are communicating much better now.

Justin has an old girlfriend.  Her name is Karma.  You only meet her if you don't listen to Justin in the first place.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Truck Guy

This post is simply about Truck Guy.  We met him today, and spent more time behind him than we ever cared to.

Truck Guy drives a grey working Sierra.  Apparently he thinks the entry of the Taco Bell drive-through is a great place to park and meditate, never mind that other hopeful Taco Bell patrons (us) were then stuck with the trunk of our car stuck out into hordes of oncoming traffic.  Eventually Truck Guy joined the rest of the line and let us in off the street.  It was a long line.  Truck Guy apparently didn't realize when it was his turn, didn't know what he wanted, or started meditating again.  I almost honked at a human being for the first time in my driving career, but even then it seemed rude.  Truck Guy woke up or made up his mind eventually and placed his order.  It must have been complicated.  By the time we made it to the window we thought he might decided to go ahead a scarf his food right there in the truck.  Thankfully, that was not so.

I don't know when or if we will meet Truck Guy again.  Hopefully we won't be in a hurry.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Just Kidding

No, we don't actually live in that dump.  Those were the old barracks at Fort Ord, now abandoned.  This is our house.

Forgive the ink spotches (courtesy of photobucket).  I'm neurotic about stalkers and identity thieves these days.  Still pretty drab, but it's home.

This is what it looked like for seven months.

This is what it looks like now.

Much better.

We're still missing some key items of furniture to complete the household, but right now just having a couch is heavenly.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Home Sweet Home

This is the housing at old Fort Ord.  Now that we've been here a while, it's actually starting to feel like home.  The house is a little drafty, but it helps keep the air fresh instead of letting the mold spores build up.  Cats, raccoons, and skunks have been seen at various times living beneath us, but they haven't smelled up the place yet.  The windows installed back in the day aren't the best quality, but David isn't a huge fan of sunlight anyway and likes to keep them covered most of the time.

The paint seems prone to chip, but it isn't too bad.  They gave us a disclaimer about it when we moved in, saying it was lead-based and to be careful not to let pets or infants ingest it.  Since we don't have any pets or infants, we don't worry about it.  The backyard also tends to get overgrown.  They mow almost everything as a courtesy, but they always leave the grass behind the fence.  We were considering renting a lawn mower, but all the plants pretty much died during the summer, saving us the trouble.

The maintenance hotline has been very helpful.  They'll send a guy out to fix whatever problem you may have within a day or two.  We've had to call them more often lately because of problems with the water pressure cutting out, and now the back screen door has fallen completely off it's tracks.

Apparently the housing company is starting to phase out these older houses in favor of new ones.  Sounds like a great idea to me.  I don't mind living in a place this drab temporarily, but I'd hate to be stuck here forever.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Scum, and How They Inconvenience Decent People Like Me

There is lots of scum in the world, but I would have to say the top of my list includes murderers, rapists, child-molesters, and purse-snatchers.  This particular rant has mostly to do with genus purse-snatcher, including the various species pickpocket, identity thief, and general sleaze.

The subject arises not only because I've had the misfortune of having my purse picked in a foreign country, but because my ever-vigilant dad recently sent me a telling snippet of surveillance footage.  I'm a creature of precautions, so what's a girl to do?  Besides looking both ways and trying not to walk alone, there only seemed to be four options.

1) Let the purse go and pop the sucker with the handgun you managed to smuggle somewhere on your person.

2) Let the purse go, knowing you have your wallet in your pocket and keys on your belt, letting him get away with girly supplies and Kleenex.

3) Keep hold of the purse with bulldog determination and end up beaten, stabbed, or left for dead.

4) Let the purse go and end up stranded with no wallet, no credit cards, no check book, no ID, no keys, no phone, and a soon-to-be-destroyed credit score.

The fact is I am very alone when I run my errands, and indeed most of the time.  When I ask other women how they protect themselves, they usually say, "That's what husbands are for."  Husbands are providers, not round-the-clock bodyguards.  David can't babysit me; he has work to do.  Because I am currently unable to arm myself appropriately, and because I refuse to be victimized again, I have opted for the decoy purse.  It still looks ripe for picking, but I've started carrying a smaller wallet in my pocket and clipping my keys to a belt loop.  Fortunately, most of my favorite skirts are so equipped.  People call me paranoid, but at least I won't be that woman on the news.

At the same time, it's a real pain in the neck to learn a new routine, to remember where your stuff is, to rummage through your pockets in the check-out line because you might possibly be robbed around the next corner.  It's the same smoldering hatred of thieves and the trouble they cause us that most upstanding citizens feel as they struggle to open shoplifter-proof packaging, or waste time and money on the latest anti-virus software.

Death to scum.