Monday, November 30, 2009

Today's Scam


A while back the local electric company sent out a notice that they may be raising rates A LOT in 2011 when the current contract expires. No, they can’t say how much until the time comes. But, just in case it is A LOT, you can hedge against future charges by sending them a little extra every month now. When all is said and done, sending five bucks now will save you all of one once rates change. Yeah. I passed on that one.

Today I got a very official looking letter written in a very scary way that home owners may or may not be responsible for the maintenance of various and assorted exterior equipment and should something go wrong it would be up to them to see about fixing it at an astronomical expense.

But wait! For the low, low fee of $4.99 a month they will maintain the equipment for you. Um, okay. That’s just dandy but no where do they give any qualifications of who and what specifically is or is not covered.

So here’s how I see it. One of the items mentioned is the electric box. Fine. If it’s mine I see absolutely no need to have it so I’m going to get rid of it. Yep, yank that sucker right off the wall and hook my wire directly to theirs. Hey, it’s mine, I can do what I
want with it, right?

No? Not a good idea? How about this? I think they should pay me the same $4.99 fee every month for the privilege of reading MY meter. And let’s tack on another couple bucks access fee since they have to traipse through my yard to get to it. Yes, I like that the sound of that so perhaps I’ll be sending them my official looking letter tomorrow.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Catching Up


Hmm, let’s see what you’ve missed.

Went to visit my great aunt Friday. She’s back in her own place and very happy to be there. Doing well and as amazing as ever. We had a nice lunch and got everything she needed sorted out. On the downside, I went with the rest of my family. Um, yeah. Nuff said, right?

The girls are home for the holiday. I stopped in to say hi to them. I like doing that because I can always count on them to leave me smiling. It’s rumored there may be some cookie baking going on while they’re home. I may have to swing by again and check.

Last week there was a major fire in the city. The building that burned was an old factory, currently empty, where I worked for about 15 years. It took every firefighter in the city with all the apparatus there is to contain it. I was there, taking pictures a full day later when it flared up again. And the mayor’s plan still includes cutting a third of that department. Makes you wonder, doesn’t it? Anyway, it made me feel a bit melancholy wandering around. I have some good memories from that place of the various people I met there. I have stories, lots of them, some I could share, some I’ll never tell anyone. Yes, it was just the building that burned and one I left behind years ago but it still makes me sad.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Oh My


Time seems to have slipped away from me. Somewhere, I misplaced a week. You’re thinking so what, right? Well, it’s kind of a big deal to me. For ages I’ve been thinking I have a book releasing next Friday. Wrong! It releases THIS Friday. Cool!

Controlled Desires from Ellora’s Cave. This one was fun to write. Neither character has a name. All the time she spent in my head, trying to mingle me with her and she never told me. When I asked him, he said that was something I didn’t need to know. What? I’m not supposed to talk to my characters like that? I’m sure if you check with other writers you’ll find others who carry on the same sort of conversations.

Blurb

She prides herself on being an independent woman, strong and capable, but it hadn’t been part of her plan to go it alone. Then he walks into her office, a man like none she’s ever met who turns her world upside down. His every touch stirs her body into a frenzy and changes everything she thought she knew about herself.

He’s been called a control freak and a take-charge kind of guy who sees right away she isn’t the sort of woman to “take direction”. A pity. He has plenty of ideas on directing her, both in the bedroom and out of it.

It’s bossy meets obstinate in a clash of wills that burns up the sheets and sends sparks flying. Neither of their lives will ever be the same.

Excerpt


For a week I stewed. I had all sorts of retorts in my mind, should he come into my domain again. No one messed with me in my territory. I’d take care of him next time he was in. Or so I decided without once examining why I was so worked up about it. I’d never got so ridiculously bent out of shape about anything as I had about him simply commenting on my work habits. And a fairly mild comment at that. Then he showed up again and all my put-him-in-his-place plans went right out the window.

My boss was away from the site, due back in an hour or so, and it was way before lunchtime. I was happily singing along with my tunes when I happened to glance up and saw him standing just inside the door.

“He’s not here,” I informed him coolly.

“I know,” he said, steadily approaching me.

“Then why are you?” I asked, frowning.

“Because you need to be taught the value of seeing things through.”

“Oh I do, do I?” I snorted. Who was he to dictate how I did my job? I didn’t care if he and my boss were old buddies. He had no right to step in and reorganize me. Besides, I really did work better when I did several things at once and my boss never had a problem with it. Why should he?

He kept coming. One step after the other. The trailer wasn’t very large but it seemed to take forever for him to reach my desk. Only he didn’t stop on his side of it. No, he circled it. Instinctively, I rolled my chair backward. Shouldn’t have done that because it left him space to stand in front of me. In one swift move he had me yanked up out of my chair, kicking it out of the way and pinning me to the wall. I gasped just as his mouth came down hard on mine.

I’d never been kissed senseless before. By the time he raised his head I couldn’t breathe. I was stunned speechless too, another first for me. My amazement must have shown on my face because he gave me a quirky little lifted eyebrow grin. Before I could collect myself enough to react, he was kissing me again. My hands were above my head, caught by one of his. Damn, they were large! His other had already found its way under my tee shirt. But it was clenched on my side, not on my breast as I expected it to be. As I wanted it to be. I attempted to squirm to get him to touch me. Didn’t work. He had me held fast exactly where he wanted me and I was stuck until he decided to release me. Or move.

I wasn’t having any success, pressing my crotch against him either. God, I needed contact! Only I wasn’t getting it. Anywhere. He had to know I wanted it with how I was struggling. And whimpering. But all he did was kiss me as he kept me firmly in place. On and on he kissed me. Without touching me any more than he needed to in order to hold me still. Then he stopped and stepped away, leaving me panting against the wall, trembling so badly I could barely stand.

“Well, I’ll be going now. I have other things to see to,” he announced blandly.

“Huh? Wait,” I begged.

He paused at the door. “Why? Isn’t that how you do things? A little now, more later?”

Fortunately for him I was still shaking. Otherwise my aim would have been better when I threw my stapler at him. As it was, it bounced harmlessly off the doorjamb just before he chuckled and walked out.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

A Harsh Reminder


I was driving home tonight and passed the Salvation Army food distribution location. There’s always a few stragglers every month. More lately than there had been. By the time I’m going by they’re usually closing up. Only tonight, there was still a line stretched down the block and around the corner full of people hoping to gather the makings of a Thanksgiving dinner.

The street is one with a light in the middle of the block. Red today so I took a moment and looked, honestly looked at the faces of those waiting. I wasn’t surprised by what I saw. Imagine the worst desolate holiday movie you’ve ever seen. This was worse and it broke my heart.

I do what I can to help where I can. All year round, not just on holidays because, believe it or not, people are hungry on days other than holidays. As are their children and their pets. This year there are more people out of work and struggling than ever so if you have a little extra, please share it. Either with friends, neighbors, acquaintances who have less or strangers by way of a local charity. Every little bit helps.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Saga Three...Yet Again


I attempted to do some laundry yesterday. Went down to stick the first load in the dryer only to find water all over the floor. Argh!

I called the Roto-Rooter since the large sum I gave them came with a six month guarantee. They could be here in a few hours or so. Believe it or not, they called, as specified. And showed up in the allotted time.

Guess who it was? Yep, Quinn’s buddy was back. He ran the gizmo through the floor drain this time. Which was a separate billable procedure but, since he hadn’t checked it the first time, he didn’t charge me. He did attempt to steal my cat but I squashed that idea.

I’m beginning to think I’m not meant to do laundry. Do you think that could be it, with all the assorted issues wash-related issues I’ve been having? Maybe I’m supposed to have a maid who deals with all this nonsense. Any volunteers?

Friday, November 20, 2009

Saga Three Continued


I called the one hour plumbers back and was told they could maybe be there in the morning. Um, no thanks. Needed a better response time than that.

I ended up with Roto-Rooter. Oh yeah. Even more costly than you’d expect. But, after an hour of grinding that sounded like the fixit gizmo was eating through the wall my drain is open. I can now move away with a clear conscience.

At least the plumber was a decent, if not bizarre individual. He wasn’t arrogant and he didn’t talk down to me when explaining the process of what he would do to resolve the problem. And, since it was raining by the time he finished testing everything, he took his shoes off when he came back in for payment.

Of course his phone/billing computer didn’t function. Apparently I jam other people’s electronics too, not just my own. It was taking so long he finally flopped on the floor to wait. Which is when Quinn decided he was there just to play with him. Damn cat who not two weeks ago attempted to maim the entire vet staff merely for giving him his yearly shots was the friendliest, most cuddly critter ever. Such a brat! He batted at the proffered pen and the billing machine sans claws like he was a meek little sweetheart kitty. He accepted unlimited petting without once turning feral as is his norm.

The Roto-Rooter man? Well I was beginning to think he’d end up sleeping on my floor, that’s how comfortable he had himself. While he was attempting to record my payment I heard his entire life’s story. Yes, I now know more about him than many of my chosen acquaintances. And here I always thought it was only the Maytag repairman who was lonely.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Saga Number Three


Do you have any idea how hard I’m struggling not to toss the purrs in Howie and just leave? I swear I’m so close to doing that at the moment I can taste it.

I went to the basement for something this morning only to discover that the drain was just starting to back up. I suppose I should be grateful that I caught it before there was a mess but I’m not feeling it just now.

I mentioned it at work and was instructed to call the city. Drains blocked at the street are their problem and they come deal with it. It only took three calls to get a real live person. Sounds easy, right? Yeah. I knew it wouldn’t be.

I came home to find a notice tacked to the door. They were there but they couldn’t do anything about it, call a plumber. Sigh. I did. Not like I have a hell of a lot of choice, do I? There’s a whole bunch of emergency plumbers listed. I called the one that said they’d respond within the hour. Un huh. Right. Like that really happened.

Seriously ready to walk…

Oh by the way, my phone's not functioning today either.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Today's Assortment


I was merrily on my way to work this morning when I passed an official looking seatbelt check sign. My first thought was that they had to be kidding. They couldn’t seriously be stopping everyone on their way to work. They weren’t. A seatbelt check in Reading consists of a cop peering at passersby as he sits in his car with the lights flashing. I suppose he’ll take off after anyone he sees without a seatbelt who’s ignored the sign. I’m safe of that one. I always wear mine.

Health alert – Dried brown wakame seaweed, a heaping teaspoon a day, will help lower your blood pressure. The theory is that is binds to the sodium in your stomach to prevent absorption. If you have a problem with crunching on dried seaweed, try kudzu root extract. A brief study done on rats showed it reduces cholesterol, blood pressure, blood sugar and insulin levels. Puerarin, the nutritional element in the root may help prevent spikes in blood sugar.

Happy to report last night’s dreams were silly, not scary. I spent my non-awake time playing Chinese checkers with Kya. She won but she cheated so I’ve filed a protest. To move, she wrapped her tail around the marbles. She also batted them with her paws at the same time, shifting more than one marble on each turn. I guess I wasn’t supposed to notice that. When I woke up she was curled up against my cheek, grinning as only cats can. I suspect she had the same dream.

A tidbit for those of you who might overindulge during the holidays. Asparagus has been shown to reduce the effects of alcohol and ease hangovers. A study has shown that asparagus suppressed free radicals within the liver and more than doubled the activity of two enzymes that metabolize alcohol.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

3 AM


A scream shatters the tranquility of the night.
Jerked awake though not nearly enough
Still mostly asleep
It takes a moment to grasp the one shrieking is me
Trapped in a nightmare I know is not real
The symbols are writhing
Marking his presence
They cast an eerie glow
Reflected in his soulless eyes as he stalks me.
I must escape or perish yet again
Night after night he tracks me
Waiting for me to drop my guard so he can pounce.
I cry out but still to no avail
He is closer now, caging me in
So close I can feel his fetid breath on my neck
He’ll have me soon
How will he kill me this time I wonder?
Crushed
Strangled
Shot
Stabbed
Sliced
Blown up
Burned
Drowned
Not much left.
Maybe tonight it will be something worse
Something from which I won’t recover
Something that will hold me in the depths of uneasy slumber until my waking life ends.
Repeatedly I wail but no one comes to my rescue
I am stuck, unable to rouse myself
I am alone
Once more, I die.


Yeah, I had a bad night. Back tomorrow.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Beep! Beep! Beep!


I finally managed to stop coughing last night enough to get comfortable and was almost asleep when I heard the beep. You know the one I’m talking about. The low battery smoke alarm beep.

I laid there and swore for a moment, listening just in case I imagined it. Nope, it was really chirping. Around one I decided I’d had enough and needed to make it stop. I got up, turning on the light which I despise doing in the middle of the night. I know where things are in my house so I don’t usually bother but for this, I had to. I was pleased to discover I did have a spare 9 volt battery. Must remember to get more at the store next weekend.

Off I went in search of the beeping alarm. I started in the basement. It was faint so I guessed that was where it would be. Felt like an idiot standing around willing one of the two units down there to beep at me so I could switch batteries and crawl back into bed. Wasn’t one of them so I went upstairs and waited. Not that one either. I had been positive it wasn’t coming from the ones on the second floor. It wasn’t nearly loud enough but up I trudged to check them. Nope. Lying in bed I would have sworn it wasn’t coming from the attic either but I had been coughing so maybe my perception was skewed. Yeah, that one didn’t make a peep while I was glaring at it.

I was on my way back to bed, ready to turn on the radio so I couldn’t hear it when it beeped a series of times. Nothing like having smoke alarms mess with you in the middle of the night, is there? I repeated the whole process and still couldn’t determine which one was acting up so I flopped down beside the cats who by then had sprawled out in my spot and asked them to point to the right one. Never hurts to try since I’m sure it was annoying them too.

I heard it again. Coming from the open window. It was my neighbor’s, not mine. And she, naturally, is getting old and no longer hears that range so it wasn’t disturbing her sleep. Figures. Damn thing.

I haven’t heard it tonight so I’m hoping one of her kids visited today and took care of it. Or maybe it’s just waiting for me to go to bed before it starts making noise again. Yeah, that sounds more likely.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Yech!


Why is it that 12 hour cold medicine only lasts 4 hours? I suppose for the same reason that the 6 hour stuff is only effective for 2. Being sick sucks!

Friday, November 13, 2009

The Next Saga


Howie.

I was impulsive last Sunday. While out and about I decided it might be a good idea to get Howie’s oil changed. Huge mistake! Remind me never to do that again. I stopped at NTB, National Tire and Battery. I have a very picky friend who goes there and trusts them for things such as oil changes so I thought it would be okay. I thought, since there were only a few cars, that Howie could be finished within the hour and we could be on our way, on to the rest of the day. What a fool I was!

I was lounging on their curb in a sunbeam, happily reading, when the counter guy came and asked if I had trouble with the passenger window. Um, no! Never! He informed me the mechanic put it down by mistake when going for the driver’s window in order to see to pull Howie up on the ramp. And it wouldn’t go back up. Worked perfectly fine for me on Saturday. Of course he didn’t believe me. Naturally I was upset but I was much better behaved than you’d think, considering they broke Howie.

They were mean to me. Downright hateful, treating me like I was lying to them. They told me it wasn’t their problem and oh well, I’d have to get it fixed. Three and a half hours later, I left in tears. The window was wedged up but the whole door was screwed from them doing that. No lock, no alarm, no mirror adjustments.

I called Monday and spoke to the manager who was slightly less rude though not by much. When she finally accepted, with a dramatic sigh, that I wasn’t going to go away, she told me to go for an estimate and have the garage call her before doing anything.

Off Howie went, at the inconvenience of my wonderful friends who transported me for the day. The garage called and surprise, surprise, manager lady wasn’t available and counter guy was nasty to them after leaving them on hold for an extended amount of time. Even though she told me not to do anything without her approval I had Howie fixed. What was I supposed to do? Leave Howie there in pieces and beg my friends to tote me around another day? Have them put him back together and then charge to rip him apart again?

I called the national complaint number that I wrote down in the store. Should have set off warning bells, having it posted so plainly but again, my picky friend was happy with the place. The woman I got there was at least polite to me. She took down all my information, agreed I did the right thing by authorizing the repair and gave me a case reference number, saying I’d hear back within two days.

I did. Unpleasant store manager lady. Yes, they will reimburse me for the repair. But in saying that she had to get in several digs about how she seriously doubted her mechanic had anything to do with Howie being broken. I repeated that the window was fine when I used it the day before which she questioned repeatedly and sarcastically.

So Howie is fixed and paid for and I only had to put up with tremendous abuse and two wrecked days for it to happen. Who else do you know who goes for an oil change and ends up with a broken window/door instead?

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Yay!


I am a happy girl. I ordered me new Crocs. Furry kids Crocs for winter. Ha! I discovered this particular style comes in junior sizes and yep, you guessed it. I have junior size feet. That’s how I had blinky shoes back when there were around too. You’re jealous now, aren’t you?

I know. I’m easily entertained. Not necessarily a bad thing as I see it.

Kinda along the same line only different, the Pike now serves the full menu plus specials on wing nights. That means I can have knife and fork food any time I feel like it. When I don’t want to cook it myself, I mean. Yes, I can cook. I cook quite well actually. It’s just lately I haven’t felt like bothering. Why should I when I can go for a short stroll and have all sorts of yummy choices for a very reasonable amount and have it made for me with no dishes to do when I’m finished? Ooh. Perhaps I shouldn’t be telling you this. You all might invade and then there won’t be room for me. Hmm, if you do come, save me a spot, would ya please? They have ultra nummy pumpkin spice cake in honor of the upcoming holidays right now. Un huh. You’re on the way, I can tell.

Kya’s decided that the toy mice need to learn to swim. She keeps dropping them in the water bowl and then sitting there, waiting for them to do something besides sink. Silly cat. She’s as easily entertained as I am but at least I’m not sitting there watching with her. I wait until I hear several splashes and then I go rescue them. Do you think perhaps I’m her entertainment, not the mice?

It’s almost cookie baking season. Don’t get any ideas here. I’m not the one doing the baking although I am capable of that as well. I have absolutely no ingredients and I’ve discovered it’s much easier to wander over to Riley’s house and keep her kidlettes company while they bake. It’s a lot of fun and they’re very sweet, sending home a tin of cookies with me. Eva May’s family bakes too and I’m way overdue for a visit there. Yep, I admit it. I’m shameless when it comes to cookies. Good thing my friends are so indulgent.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Oooookeee

I was at work today and answered the phone as I always do, generally with the wrong greeting for the time of day it actually is. Yeah, I can’t seem to be bothered with that detail. Just not all that important to me to get it right and say good morning in the morning and good afternoon in the afternoon. I get the company name correct and that, to me, is enough. Besides, it tends to throw people off and I like that.

Anyway, I said good afternoon at a little after ten this morning and this man asks who I was. Not unusual so I told him. He then asks me to guess who he is and identified himself as the one who makes me laugh. Um, no, not out of the realm of possibilities on any given day either. But the next question had me suspicious. He wanted to know what shoes I was wearing. Hmm, okay. I asked who he needed to speak to. His response was to tell me to take my shoes off. They were already off but I hung up instead of revealing that to him.

I’ve had prank calls before but I must admit that this one was a first for me. I never had a foot fetish call before. After I stopped laughing I got to thinking. It’s really a little sad that the best thing he has to do on a Wednesday morning is make random calls and chat with women about their feet. What kind of person does that? And guys, do you really get a thrill out of making such calls to someone you don’t know?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Hmm...


I read something today. “It is the superstition of the age that every form of human discomfort is susceptible to the magical powers of hope.” The article I read it in is unimportant. It was about the difference between selling strategies and selling tactics. See? Told you that wasn’t what I was getting at. It was that thought itself that stopped me.

I’m wondering what it means to you. Anyone care to have an opinion today? Keep in mind there is no right or wrong answer here. I thought it was an interesting statement so I shared it with you and now I want to know what you think about it. That’s it. No trick questions.

Monday, November 9, 2009

One Quick Thing


Why are all the directions for brownie mix incorrect? I checked all the boxes last weekend and found that each and every one of them is wrong. They’re all missing something vital and I just don’t understand it.

I couldn’t decide what variety to get which is how I got to looking at all the boxes in the first place. I was going to choose the type that was correct. Didn’t do me one bit of good and my choice dilemma remained.

Oh, you want to know what’s missing. You mean it’s not obvious to anyone but me. You’re messing with me, right? Come on, you all know what I’m talking about. You don’t? For real, I have to point it out to you?

Sigh. How disheartening. Alright. The step that is omitted from every brownie mix that my local store carries is “Add cinnamon to taste.” But you do that just like I do anyway, don’t you?

Saturday, November 7, 2009

New Review



I got the yummiest review for Questing from Night Owl Romance. 4.5/5 Hearts! Thank you for naming it a Reviewer's Top Pick, Melinda.

Kiley Fisher is in love. The problem is she has not spoken a word to her love interest. You see Jordan McKade has been in her restaurant for four months just eating…not talking to her. She has fallen in love with his voice. Something about it just makes her all in lust and feeling wild. Yet Kiley knows that it would be crazy to date. Everytime she comes near to talking to him she shakes with nerves. So it comes as a surprise that one night she ends up in his house. Not wanting to leave she is shocked by the deep feelings Jordan has for her. Someone wants her for themselves and she is determined to stay alive. The thing is that the feelings and chemistry Jordan is throwing at her is scaring her. Though they have known each other for around four months she doesn’t really know Jordan McKade. When things start getting tough can she trust Jordan with her heart?

Jordan McKade has found his woman. The thing is that he has not said a word to her. Falling in love from afar is terrible but when he gets a chance to be with her he is nervous as a teenager on his first date. Something about Kiley brings out all the possessiveness in him as well as his passion. Jordan knows it is too soon to show his feelings towards her but he has wanted her since like forever. Kiley is sexy, passionate, and beautiful and the most stubborn woman he has ever known. He knows they belong together but she is weary of risking her heart on a man. Can Jordan convince his Kiley that they belong together for their love is a unique one that only comes once in a lifetime?

Oh my god I loved this book by Barbara Huffert. I really enjoyed this tale as it had a man who already new who his heart belong to…he just had to convince her of the same thing. I loved that Kiley was a shy woman and not sure of what love is, which scares her when Jordan meets her. The fact that he comes everyday is one step of showing her that his love is real and not a joke. You can tell their love for each other right away and it was a great love to read about.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Random Thoughts


I want lemon sponge in a cup. My great aunt has a yummy recipe that she shared with me. I’ve made it. She said it turned out as good as hers but I don’t think so. Hers is much better. I think that has something to do with her making it. I really don’t want to be a little kid again for real but I wouldn’t mind going back in time for a day just to have that. Hmm, while I’m there I’d like to have some of her candied nuts that she used to make at Christmas. And my grandmother’s slicker pie that she always made out of leftover pastry when she was making something else and let me mix together with my fingers. That was fun!

Strawberries are the only fruit with seeds on the outside. Do you think that was on purpose?

I saw a really cool pair of high top sneakers in a magazine. You know. The plain canvas ones like they had when I was a kid. Not the fancy ones like are out there now. Only now the old-fashioned ones cost $62.00. But they’re cute so they’d be worth having. I wish I knew someone with money who likes me. Maybe I could take up a collection from all the people who are annoyed by my multicolored Crocs and buy myself some. Or maybe not since I want the pair that’s four shades of blue mixed together like they sewed them together wrong. I don’t think I’ll mention that. I’ll show them the picture of the bland white ones instead.

Why does my choice of footwear bother some people? I don’t get it. I’m always well-behaved and wear a matched pair. I’ve often been tempted to wear two different colors. Maybe I will just to see how much additional annoyance that causes. They’d probably think I lost my mind, that it wasn’t intentional, and not say a word. Yeah, I might have to test that one.

My squirrels are fat and sassy these days. I think they’ve been eating everything lately instead of stocking up for winter. They seem to have things backwards since they spent the summer burying the nuts I put out. I had someone call me from a block away to tell me she found almonds in her flower pot. Silly squirrels.

I think I’m going out for dinner tonight. I’m not really sure. I was talking to a friend at lunch and it was mentioned and I may have agreed to it but I’m not positive. I can either call and ask which will cause all sorts of amusement or just hang out for a half hour and see if she shows up. Yeah, I think I’ll go with that. Maybe I’ll go change one of my shoes while I wait. She’s one who’d just laugh and shake her head at me. If she doesn’t appear I might wander over to the Pike and see what tonight’s specials are. They always have something yummy. Maybe I’ll call first. It makes Cory the bartender laugh when I call and ask him what’s for dinner. The Phillies lost so it shouldn’t be too packed at this time of night. Sounds like a plan. See ya.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

The Saga


T-Mobile

My new best friends. Not. Though they should be after spending so much time speaking to them yesterday. Apparently the troubles I’m having are not related to the total network crash. It’s an intermittent texting issue that, yes, they know about but, no, they haven’t figured out how to eliminate yet. Leave it to me, right?

It started with Tony who said a $20 credit is nice but you’d rather communicate with your friends. Now how would you take that? You’d think it meant you were getting a $20 credit, wouldn’t you? Ha! Silly, silly, silly. Tony said he would troubleshoot me and see what was up. Did he?

Hell if I know. I got kicked back into the hold queue and let me tell you. Their choice of music is intentional torture meant to goad you into hanging up so they don’t have to deal with you. After another 20 minute wait, yeah, I was determined, I ended up with Emily. Poor Emily was the one who informed me of Tony’s little exaggeration on the credit. A service interruption is only worth $5. Did you hear that, anyone with T-Mobile? Call them, listen to horrendous tunes and you’ll get $5 off your next bill. Tell them I sent you. Anyway Emily said I was disconnected from the network. Oh no! She said I should hang up and she’d do her mumbo-jumbo magic to fix it. She promised to call me back within 5, that’s f-i-v-e, minutes. Twenty-four hours later and I’m still waiting. Oh and she did tell me to turn my phone off and back on and then text myself to see if it went through. Yup. BFD! I see no advantage to being able to text me. If I have something to say to me I’ll just say it and not bother with the phone.

Enter Matthew, after my third on-hold torture session. I never knew I was such a masochist but I’m beginning to wonder. Matthew was appalled that neither Tony, not Emily fixed my problem. Why, there was a bright red alert light flashing on my account! Imagine that. I think it’s pretty and they like the way it looks so they wanted it to stay there. He mentioned that my account was showing internal texting was functional, no duh, but external was disconnected. He had me shut off my phone, pushed his big, magic button, turn it back on and viola! It worked. For a few minutes. And then nothing. Again.

Sigh. Blaring noise and hello Tameka. Do you know she actually had the nerve to tell me to have a pleasant evening after saying there was absolutely nothing she could do for me except put me back on hold and pass me on to someone else? I’m not kidding. She really did. Four hours and the fourth person after I started my fruitless quest and she tells me to have a pleasant evening. Sheesh. Nervy of her, wasn’t it?

Another loooooong wait and I end up with Alicia. She’s tech support, not regular customer service. I bemoan my saga yet again and she decides it’s interesting since everything on my account looks just fine. I guess Matthew got rid of the pretty red light. Kind of like tapping over a trouble light on your dashboard I suspect. Alicia went through the same procedure he did, just to make sure and while I was trying to test if it worked she talked to the advanced tech guys who told her to fill out a ticket, see the reason at the top. She returned with a test phone and proceeded to text back and forth a few times with me. Worked with her, not with the friend I’d been trying to talk to. So somewhere out there in T-Mobile headquarters is a phone I can communicate with. Whoopdedoo! Isn’t that special? Yes, I admit it. I was a tad sarcastic with Alicia who, although it was after 10 PM by then, kept her cool and stuck with what she was supposed to say. But really, can you blame me?

Bottom line, the advanced tech guys have 72 hours to address my problem and my life is worth a credit of 50 cents a day for all the time the service is non-functional. I have a ticket number should I decide to subject myself to more of their tunes in order to call and ask about it. Actually Alicia turned out to be okay. She’s giving up her phone for 72 hours along with me so I’m not alone in my isolation. I did, however, allow her one exception and that’s only if she goes into labor since she’s 9 months pregnant. Too bad she won’t be able to let me know too since, unfortunately, MY PHONE DOESN’T WORK!!!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Not the Best Day


T-Mobile is experiencing problems. Problems that started as intermittent texting but became no phone service and no texting. None at all. Zilch. Zip. Nada. Their statement says oops, they’re sorry. That’s just not good enough. My contract is up shortly and I will not be renewing it.

My great aunt, as I’ve mentioned, is 93. She had surgery last week, technically minor, but she is 93. No phone service means I wasn’t able to check on her. When I spoke to her Monday she was a bit mopey. Not good for someone her age who’s just had a procedure. Attitude counts for so much. Silly me dropped long distance on the house phone so I had no way to contact her. And she had no way of knowing why I wasn’t calling, just that I wasn’t. Feeling ignored and abandoned is really not a good thing either.

I tried to call this morning and it rang, major progress, but then it shut off. I don’t know if she was in her room or out at therapy. I really hope she was out so she doesn’t wonder who hung up on her. I’ll try again in a bit and see what happens.

My baby kitty, Kya is off getting spayed today. She has to spend the night. I’ve gotten so used to her curled up on the pillow beside me, purring away, her paw resting on my cheek, that I’m anticipating a long night. Yes, the furry boys are here but they don’t get the whole cuddle keeps away the bad dreams thing. And with my phone acting up, I have no way of reaching out for someone to calm me once the nightmares begin.

And then I got home to find my African violet unpotted all over the living room carpet. Harry had a busy day. Yep, sure it was him because he and Kya are my climbers and she wasn’t home. Somehow, I’m sure T-Mobile is responsible for him doing that today after resisting the temptation for over five years.

I really dislike those people at the moment. Anyone so overjoyed with your phone service you’d recommend them?

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Mind Bounce


There’s a new trend beginning which I’m sure all of you will want in on. What is it you ask? Room service tattoos. Yup, that’s right, tattoos done by an in-house ink staff that can be ordered ala carte.

It’s called the Ink & Stay package at the Hotel Erwin in Venice Beach, CA. Deals begin at $399 and include a $100 tattoo voucher, Lubriderm lotion, an ice pack and a bottle of tequila. If, on the off chance, you love it there so much and want the whole world to know, the hotel will give you $500 for sporting an “I Heart Hotel Erwin” tat.

A resurgence you might be interested in is that of drop drinks. Currently popular at the Fire Escape Bar & Grill in Citrus Heights, CA are the classic Reverse Irish Car Bomb, Guinness and Baileys dropped into Jameson which I would probably like, Mexican Sweat, a shot of habanera pepper sauce with a shot of tequila and lime, and the Flaming J├Ąger Bomb, a shot of burning J├Ągermeister dropped into a pint of Red Bull. Drop drinks aren’t just for college students anymore!

Did you know November has been rechristened Movember? To raise awareness of prostrate cancer there’s a worldwide movement raising funds for research by sponsoring mustache growth. It’s set up similar to walk-a-thons and has parties and everything. To find out more, go to movember.com

There. How’s that for a bunch of non sequiturs?

Monday, November 2, 2009

Out and About


I went for a walk around my neighborhood last weekend. Not really the safest thing to do but that’s never been a real deterrent to me.

I found a path into the middle of the train yard. Good to know in case the guards won’t let me wander around after I explain to them my purpose for wanting to. I’ll have to wear real shoes though if I end up needing to take the path. Crocs are comfy but not real good when it comes to climbing up and down steep embankments.

Around the corner, a block away, right beside the library branch that’s closing is an awning store. I never noticed it before. What I find interesting is I had come across another awning store earlier in the summer while I was seeking murals. Seemed a bit odd, especially once I tell you I know another local family in the awning business.

Reading really isn’t all that big. Upon consideration, I suppose lots of houses do sport awnings but I never thought there was all that much of a demand for them. I was curious so I checked in the phone book. There are twenty-five awning companies listed. Imagine that. Really, seems like overkill to me but who knows? Perhaps it’s a booming business. Maybe I should learn to thread the sewing machine so I can get in on it. Hmm, no maybe not. I really think be better if I stick to meandering and looking at them instead. Trust me, you don’t want to see anything that I attempted to sew.

Have anything unusual in your neighborhood?