Procrastination (But I Digress)

Monday, May 29, 2006

Spider and the fly, part deux

Since this is a three day weekend, I ambitiously decided it was time to put off a bug bomb in my room--spiders and flys are not supposed to live in a person's room. Well "flys" is an exaggeration. I had the one fly and after I wrote about it, I never saw it again. Anyway, I planned out covering all the wood furniture and laying out newspaper--it seemed like a really big job and bug spray really smells. I was envisioning a lot of laundry afterwards. Well it got later and later on Saturday and finally I threw in the towel and admitted that it wasn't going to happen.

That night I was just about to sleep, when I heard a fly right next to my ear--YIKES! I smacked my ear (really hard) and got up and turned on the light and looked for the fly. Nothing. That was a little freaky. I had seen a big spider earlier in the bathroom, but I killed it. Did this fly escape? I had the window open earlier--is there a hole in the screen? The fly must be attracted to the light from my clock radio, so I pointed it away from me, turned out the light and tried to go back to sleep. Just as I was drifting off to sleep, buzzing, right in my ear. I smacked my ear (again, really hard, ouch). Nothing. I turned on the light. Nothing. I'm going insane--these are the first symptoms--hearing a buzzing in your ear. A brain tumor--that must be it. Now I'm certian that my ear wax must be the attraction for the fly. It's late at night and I'm very tired--those are my excuses and I'm sticking to them. I put on ear muffs, so the fly couldn't get in my ears. I turned off the light and waited. I must have fallen asleep, because I was startled out of sleep by the buzz and I hit my ear and got my ear muff. Logic seeped in and I decided that I probably dreamed the buzz, because it would be impossible for the fly to get inside the ear muffs.

I don't know if I've ever shared this, but I solve problems in my sleep. The problems I'm thinking about when I go to bed get turned over and inside out and everywhichway turned around and when I wake up in the morning I have the solution. Of course the problem has taken on epic proportions by this time and the soloution has no grounding in reality, but it makes perfect sense right before I wake up and in those few minutes before logic kicks in when I remember it upon waking. The fly was in my nose. That was the solution as to why I didn't kill the fly the two times I hit my ear and how I could still hear the fly with the ear muffs on. The fly had to be in my nose. OMG I like the insanity theory better.

I wake up at 6:30 in the morning with the fly was in my nose solution and decide it is time to go nuclear. It's bug bomb time. I get out every sheet I own and cover the wood furniture. I put down newspaper. I get my sudoku book and my purse and dress for the gym and I'll have plenty of things to keep me busy for the two hours the bug bomb will take. Fly, if you exist, you are toast. If not, I can blame this insanity thing on the bug spray.

Now I sprayed a bug bomb in the bathroom about a month ago. Shortly thereafter I was bit by a spider. I've lived in this house for six years. We have lots of spiders, but I had never been bit by a spider that I can recall. I didn't put those two together until this morning. Overnight, I was bit by a spider. Where did he hide during the nuclear attack? How did he survive?

At least there was no buzzing last night. Spiders rule, flys drool.

Sunday, May 21, 2006


I finally defrosted the little fridge in my office--it had about six years of ice built up and it was dripping on my food (ice migrated into fridge area and melted). There was water everywhere--it was just as awful a job as I thought it would be, but it's done now. I feel so much better. It makes me want to clean the entire office. Just purge and really spruce things up. Of course I need to wait for all the water in the carpet to dry before I can move my desk mat back.

Adrienne and Erika have ice makers at work. I want an ice maker. I can make 8 tiny ice cubes in my little fridge--they last about five minutes. Our office fridge doesn't have an ice maker unless you count me--filling up ice cube trays sideways with sparkletts about six times a day. (Ok, we only have four trays, so logically it is only four times a day--it feels like more.)

In other news (yes, defrosting my little fridge counts as news), Marisa and Caitlyn are in Minnesota. They had a three hour lay over between flights, but apparently a relative on that side of the family had a lay over in the same airport at the same time and was there to help Ris. It is this a great country or what. Her calls to Adrienne indicate that all is well. In still other news, Adam turns 16 in five days. I can't hardly believe it. He has facial hair and looks over my head all the time saying, where's Kathy?

On the house front, termites and toilets down, trim and mold to go. Ops, I forgot about the dryer. And it's time for girl scout incentives--just my luck, Marisa is out of town.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Jury Duty Anyone?

I can see the light at the end of the tunnel that is my class. There are only five more official classes, plus two "court" days and one (well actually two) field trip(s). I spoil those kids rotten--three or four of them did not want to go to UCLA for our field trip, so I'm planning a second field trip for later in June to Loyola.

I am inviting everyone I know to be on "jury duty" for our mock trial. I'm not sure how good it will be, but we have a real live simulated court room to hold it in and the fact pattern is pretty good. We shall see. Since I've never done this, I'm a little nervous about all the pieces falling into place, but I'm sure it will work out fine in the end.

In toastmater news, there's a convention in Washington DC in August. For whatever reason, I really, really want to go. Here I've been wanting to go to Hawaii, Monterey and Yosemite, but instead it looks like I'm going to go to Washington DC in the SUMMER. What's the world coming to.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Book Signing

I went to my first book signing last night (and I've just e-mailed my blog site to the author, so this is probably mostly written for her). My friend (excuse me, my BEST friend) at Curves wrote a book--it's a self help, inspiration non-fiction. I've only read a few pages, but it is so easy to read. It is funny and touching. Who can't use inspiration--something for everyone. The title is "Oh My God, It's ME." She told the story that she'd gone out on her lunch break one day to do errands and she had a fight with someone every place that she stopped. After 20 minutes of running around, she'd had four fights and she got in the car and had the realization "Oh My God, It's ME." Isn't that cute, excuse me, clever. Well when she says it, it's really funny.

Ok, back to the book signing. It was at Julie's house on Irving two blocks above Kenneth Road. Now that block of Irving was my favorite place when I was campaigning, because all the neighbors up and down the block know each other. If you are friends with one, all the rest love you and I am friends with Kathy and Sam Engel. A few days before the book signing, Julie asked if I'd spoken with Kathy and if she was coming. I see Kathy about twice a year maybe, but it just happened that I saw her last Friday. Wouldn't you know I totally forgot to mention the book signing. So I felt kind of guilty for not mentioning it and I sent out a mass e-mail to everyone I thought might be remotely interested in Sheryl's book. No one came, but it's puting that posititve energy out there in the world--creating buzz. Marje, who was real sorry not to be able to make it wants three copies sight unseen. She's going to love it.

The people who came to the book signing, were all the gals we see every day at Curve with make up and nicer clothes. I have to tell you it was so weird seeing these gals in make up and all dolled up. Sheryl looked like a movie star--really glammed up--I almost didn't recognize her (until she opened her mouth). She is a hoot (and I'm not just saying that because she might read this). We had such a delightful time, I didn't want it to end. But Julie told Sheryl that seven minutes was the maximum attention span of the human, so Sheryl tried to stop talking after 30 minutes--she didn't want to ruin the book for us no doubt. Then she signed books. The book costs $14.95, so of course everyone brought $20's. Julie's husband was so cool, he had nickles ready.

The book is going on Amazon dot com soon and Sheryl has a real book signing at the Boddy Tree next month. We were just for practice.

One thing she said last night stuck with me today. She said that people want to argue with her about spirituality before they've even read the book. Her attitude is I don't want to argue with you, read the book. If you get it, great, if not, oh well. She talks about her idea of God and the universe and by golly all night long all I could think of was arguing about it with her. And I haven't read the book yet. I have no idea why, but anecdotally it's universal that if someone tells you their idea of spirituality, you want to tell them yours. When I actually read the book, I'll probably figure out that we agree. I'm schizophrenic that way.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

A week of House stuff

I realize now that my busy life is how I cope with stress and not the cause of stress. The house is plenty of stress all by itself--it doesn't need any help. Let's review:

Mold in the wall of Adam's room. I had the guys come out to give me an estimate to remove it this week. They want to remove four feet of wall and that's what they'll give me an estimate for, but if they find more mold, then they'll take a wider area and it will cost more. So give me an estimate for 8 feet I tell them--let me know the most I'm facing here. We can't do that they tell me. But the estimate includes patching the wall back up, right. No we don't do that. By the way, they ask is there plaster under the dry wall. Yes. Ok, we'll need to test for asbestos. Let's just assume there's asbestos and go from there. No, we need a test. Can you recommend someone who will fix the wall, so I can get an estimate from them. Sure, but they will only be able to estimate what it will cost to fix a four foot hole and we might take more. But you don't know how much, I got it.

The termite guy came back on Monday morning when I wasn't there. I could tell he'd been there because the crawl space cover was not on properly (my handy dandy fed ex envelope didn't cover the hole.) But the real reason that I could tell he'd been there is because the floor in the living room feels stronger. Yippee.

The gas man came on Monday also. Our gas bill has exploded, but not from the high cost of gas--our usage is through the roof, so they offered to check all our appliances for free while assuring me that if there was a leak, I would know it. We had to leave the dog in the back yard and the key under the mat. When I got back to my office from court, there was a message from the gardener saying that he'd be there today to get the rotten fruit off the trees. TODAY--but the dog is outside. Our gardener has no inhibition against letting the dog out and often leaves the gate open. So I jump in the car and rush home. The gardener has not been in the back yard yet and the gas man is done, so the dog goes back in the house. The gas man leaves a ticket that says we need service on one of the heaters--great.

The plumber came about three weeks ago to fix the toilet and it's never worked right. First the plumber just didn't show up at all and the next time he called in sick, so Tuesday was the third appointment. I left instructions to call me at my office and I'd meet them at the house. Nothing. Tuesday night there's a message on the phone at home saying they were on their way and later someone gives me a card that was stuck in the door, they'd been there, where was I. I was furious--why didn't they call my office--ugh. So I called and they were mad at me for not being there and promised to try to fit me in on Wednesday. They called the office while I was at lunch at Kiwanis and so I couldn't answer the phone, but Josh was at the house taking care of Caitlyn so he would let them in. Except when they came to the door, Josh was in the back and by the time he got to the door, the guy was gone. So he called them and they came back and I was there by then. So they look at the toilet and I'm thinking expensive job, fix the pressure in the whole house, time for a new toilet--houses are very stressful. They fixed the toilet wrong the first time, no charge to fix it right. And we're done. It really is never as bad as it seems.

Tomorrow is the dryer. I hope they remember to call me at the office. Maybe I should take the day off of work to be there. Not being able to address the mountain of work that is my desk is another excellent candidate for stress.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

The stress of stress

Stress is very stressful. I heard a study that said that English middleaged people were healthier than American middleaged people. It was a pretty big study and their theories discounted junk food, but one theory is that Americans work too much. It's the stress. I told my dry cleaner and he said that his wife is always telling him to take time off and go home earlier, but he says when he's home, he's just thinking about all the work he could be doing if he was at his business. Me too. I thought.

So I made a concerted effort to get more sleep. I went to bed an hour early, but I was so worried about getting more sleep that I couldn't fall asleep and I tossed & turned the whole night. I was so stressed out about being stressed out. Ugh.

Last night the whole family surprised me at the PTA meeting with an award for service--even Caitlyn was there. And I was the speaker about Teens and the Law, so that was fun.

And Adrienne and I finally went to 24 hour fitness on Sunday. We missed the cycling class (thank god--they were still riding long after Adrienne and I were done!)

On the whole, I really don't have anything to be stressed out about, so I think that all this stress is a figment of my imagination. Today is my class (only 10 more to go and so much work, but that can't be stressful because I really enjoy it and I completely control the measure of success--no stress allowed).

And then I have my speech. A friend in toastmaster said that I should tell my Cinderella story, but cut it to the bone as an exercise. I'm thinking about it--Mrs. Ivy doesn't have to go home in between figuring out that Angelica doesn't have the money to buy Cinderella a dress, that ought to save ten seconds or so. No stress.

Tomorrow is Kiwanis--last meeting before our major fundraisor--we're at 100 tickets out of 120 and my third isn't all the way sold, but no worries, I still have three days to sell the rest. No stress.

Tomorrow night is ABWA board meeting--we need to vote this month and a survey and a great program and I've invited two guests. Clockwork--everythings coming alone, no stress.

Thursday is a deposition and I'm missing the Legacy Luncheon so Gladys is going in my place. She'll buy stuff at the silent auction--I've done my part, no worries, no stress.

Class again on Thursday, only 8 more left and we have to have a field trip and maybe another Saturday class. No worries, no stress.

Friday is the major fundraisor and Adrienne and I want to go to 24 hour fitness at 5 p.m.. I'll have plenty of time to get ready. My dress was $14 and looks fine--easy, easy, easy. No stress. My shoes are ugly, but I don't care. No stress.

Saturday is ABWA and a very long drive. I think I will splurge and drive myself so that I don't have to rely on car pooling. There, no stress.

Saturday night is Hoover Street Scene--I volunteered to work the ticket counter--so easy, no worries. I am just too busy to have any stress. I think that study is all wrong about Americans.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Author, Author

Yes, I've been bit by the writing bug. For toastmasters, I'm supposed to tell a folk tale such as Three Billy Goats Gruff or Cinderella. Of course, I chose Cinderella and started weaving a story of Cinderella from the stepmother's point of view. I never liked that she was a villian. Angelica Houston gave a marvelous performance in Ever After and it gave me an idea to explore her motivation. Over about four days I crafted the story in my head, but it was getting kind of long, so I figured I better write it down and cut parts out, because the speech is only 9 minutes. So I wrote, got a phone call, and wrote and wrote and looked up and had to go to a meeting, came back and wrote and wrote and looked up and it was time to leave again, came back and wrote and wrote and finished. It was in teeny tiny print, so I enlarged the print and double spaced it. I printed it out and raced off to my next appointment. When I got home last night, I timed how long it took to tell the story, thinking that if it was over a little, that would be ok. It seemed like I had a lot of pages, but about half way through, it stopped and I didn't have all the pages. I looked back at the stuff I'd grabbed from work and sure enough there were a bunch more pages. It was over 12 pages long. It took 20 minutes to read out loud going really fast.

I mentioned it to Adrienne and she read it. She said she liked it. I started to think, this would make a great short story (if I do say so myself)--I should enter it in a contest or a magazine. So Adrienne goes on line and there are bunches of contests for short stories. I wanted to change the ending and then I realized that if I wasn't going to be telling this story, I'll have to clean up the sentences and dialog and there's a lot of work to this writing stuff. But you know how it is when you have so much free time...

There's a gal at the gym who just had a book published. It's called "Oh My God, It's Me" It's some kind of self help book, but she's such a great gal, I'm looking forward to reading it. She's planning book signings and appearances. Some of the other women are coming up with flyers and ideas to help her sell the book. It's kind of fun. So I told her this morning that it was her fault that I got bit by the writing bug--now she wants to read it. It's one thing to share it with family and strangers, but people I know, well, I'm not sure about that. She might actually have an opinion other than mine. We can't have that.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Flowers or Cookies

I joined a contest at the gym--whoever loses the most weight in May wins a gift certificate for flowers. Now normally, I'm not that big on flowers--they are certianly not better than most cookies, but I really want to have yellow roses for my birthday, so free is the best way to ensure I'll have them. And then today, I had not one, not two, but three opportunities to have cookies. I do love cookies, but I successfully resisted the first opportunity. The second was too much, but I limited my intake to one small cookie. And then a vendor gave us three dozen of my favorite cookies in the whole wide world. I'm on my second and I'm hoping this typing will keep me from going back for more. Who needs stinkin flowers.

We have Gretchen for just one more day. We're having a barbeque tonight, so I rescheduled my ABWA board meeting. I told them my sister was in town and family gets priority. Donna told me to give that Jackson a big kiss from her. I guess I'm only allowed to have so many sisters and I'm over the limit.