Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A Pictorial History of my Whirlwind Work Trip to Tampa

Spent 24 hours in Tampa this week for training.  Awesomeness ensued:

Ummm.  I asked for a compact car.  Not Big Pimpin' in a Crown Vic!  They see me rollin'...they hatin'...

Trunk large enough for 5 dead bodies (or one bag of Boomer's food).  
Look how sad my tote looks.

 Killer view from my hotel room.  
Does the fun ever start?

Following a Maserati to the airport.
Texting & driving may be illegal, but taking cell phone pictures through the steering wheel?  Totally kosher.

Flight home delayed.   
Double vodka cranberry to the rescue!  
I had to order two so the first one wouldn't get lonely in my stomach.

The only other highlight from the voyage of the damned trip was when a guy got kicked off the flight home because he "smelled".  How bad do you have to smell to get tossed from an airplane?  He wasn't even embarrassed.  Awesome!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Trash: It's not just in the driveway

You know how sometimes you're faced with two options, and to choose Option "A" would mean you're probably a reasonably classy human being...but to choose Option "B" would mean you're headed down the crushed-beer-can-strewn path directly to trailer-trashdom?  No?  May be it's just me.  Anyway, it seems I just can't keep myself from resisting the sweet Siren's song of Option B.  Because, as I've stated before: LAB = Ghetto.

I can't believe I'm admitting this.  But you're not going to be the least bit surprised by it.

At my office, we're rotating temporary staff members throughout the week this summer because my full-time coworker is on maternity leave through September.  I'm here every weekday, and since we try to have two people here at all times, in any given week I work with two or three different people.  All of whom are supposed to do my bidding, but we all know how that's been working out for me.

So I came to work on Monday dressed in an awesome new outfit that I had just put together.  Nothing makes you feel better than knowing that you look pretty good!  I even straightened my hair and wore heels.  Watch your back, Kate Middleton, I'm coming for you!

On Tuesday morning, I was in my closet feeling moderately hung over and completely underwhelmed by my wardrobe options.  I looked longingly at my Monday outfit, which was hanging nicely on the rack (it's a dry-clean-only ensemble, and since it was the first time I had worn it I was planning to wear it one more time before sending it to the cleaners).

And then I realized: my Monday coworker and my Tuesday coworker are two different people.  And my boss hadn't been to the office at all on Monday.  And none of the HOA staff had stopped by my office on Monday. And I hadn't met any potential home buyers on Monday.  And Jeff hadn't seen me in my work clothes at all on Monday.

Do you see where this is headed?...down the crushed-beer-can-strewn path directly to trailer-trashdom, perhaps?

Yep - you guessed it!  I put on my smokin' hot Monday outfit for a Tuesday revival.

I wore the exact same outfit to the office two days in a row.  Not twice in one week.  Two. Consecutive. Days.  And screw you guys, I felt great wearing it the second time. 

In case it raises your opinion of me, I did change my undergarments.  I'm not a complete animal.

I make no apologies.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Over-served and solo

Jeff’s working nights this week, which means I’m spending my evenings sitting in my favorite chair watching “Alaska State Troopers” and “Locked up Abroad” on NatGeo, not worrying about all the housework I should be doing and drinking Gallo White Zinfandel.  Because Beringer stopped honoring my $5 rebates after the 49th one I mailed them. Guess 50 is the limit. Bastards.

It’s hardly a surprise that I often find myself slightly “over-served” on nights Jeff is working.  And screw you with your “does she really sit home by herself at night and drink alone?” judgments.  I can name at least 30 things I do on a regular basis that are more judgment-worthy than a little solo sipping in the evening.

Jeff’s no idiot.  He can tell within 30 seconds of arriving home at 8 a.m. just how liquored up I got the night before.  Like this morning, for example.  Trash?  Not taken to the curb for weekly pickup.  Laundry room?  Double doors wide-ass open to the whole world (the laundry is in the garage and has separate doors that open to the outside).  Two of his least favorite things to find when he gets home.  If I had left the garden hose blocking his parking spot, I would have had a hat trick!

This morning I was in the kitchen when he pulled in the driveway.  I saw him get out of his car, look to the left at the trash can and then look to the right at the laundry doors.  Then I saw his shoulders drop and what appeared to be a giant exhale.  He actually had the nerve to walk in the door and say “Did you do laundry this morning?”  Whatever

We both know I forgot to lock the laundry room last night.  What’s the big frigging deal?  No one lives behind us and it’s not like anyone is going to walk around the back of our house, see that the laundry room is open and then decide to steal his tighty whities and our industrial-sized box of OxyClean.  Billy Mays really knew his shit!

I don’t know why he thinks it’s such an issue.  I guess it’s because we keep the beer fridge in there, and if anyone discovered our stockpile we could take a substantial hit. Right in the liquor locker, if you will.  But since no one knows about the super-secret beer fridge location, our stockpile remains perfectly safe even if I forget to lock the doors.

Oh, shit.  Never mind.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Reversal of Trash Fortune (AKA: words I'll always regret saying)

I’ve been kind of overwhelmed the past couple of months.  I had a family emergency that’s taken up most of my time and I’ve basically been at the point that I just can’t handle one more single thing.

Enter one more single thing... 

While I was out dealing with said family emergency, I decided to make a quick stop at Taco Bell on the way between crisis management appointments and work to pick up a drive-through lunch.  Because nothing says home cooking like 35% beef mixed with “other ingredients”.   

So there I am, sitting at the bottom of the I-985 exit ramp waiting to make a right on red to get to Taco Bell, when WHAM!!!  A high school kid in a brand new Jeep nails my beloved old convertible right in the rear. Insert “taking it in the rear” joke here.  The police eventually arrived, only to inform me that the hitter had questionable immigration status and even more questionable car insurance.   Awesome.  Note to self: How come a 17-year-old potentially-undocumented immigrant has a nicer car than I do? 

I finally got back to the office and started wrangling with the high school hitter’s insurance company about getting the repairs covered.  Fast forward two full weeks and the insurance co. is still tap dancing around with the requisite bullshit:  New policy.  Driver not covered.   Police report not ready. Insured party won’t return calls. Insured party won’t answer certified letter.  Insured party won’t answer door.  Blah Blah Blah. 

Now I’m dealing with a family emergency and driving around in a ghetto looking car with a smacked up rear bumper and a tail light hanging on by two slim wires and a prayer, which may or may not be covered by the guilty party’s insurance company.  It was literally more than I could handle (and I don’t use those words lightly – I’m usually a Ninja Warrior in a crisis situation). 

Naturally, I whined to Jeff about how I’m just going to start walking everywhere I go because I can’t be bothered with working with the sketchy insurance company to get my car fixed while I’m dealing with family issues and an office workload that seems to double every day. Cue violins for my pitiful situation. 

Jeff, in his infinite wisdom, says “I don’t mean to make things worse, but we’ve only got a month until you birthday and we need to get the emissions done so we can renew your tag. Oh, and since your current tag is damaged we can’t renew online.  We’ll have to go to the DMV and wait in line to get a new one.”  That’s two more single things, people.  Possibly three.

My response?  “I don’t want to hear another goddamn word about cars.  EVER.  Can you please just handle everything?”  He got a little smile on his face, and without a second thought he said he’d take care of it.  I should have noticed that he agreed a little too easily, but I kind of thought may be he was just happy to have an opportunity to take care of me.  Sometimes I can be so stupid!

Anyway, I picked up the keys to our spare car (a trusty 1997 Nissan Pathfinder, with damn near a quarter-million miles on it), and went about my business while he handled the insurance battle and car repair (which took 6 more weeks plus repair time, by the way).

About half way through the repair process I came home one night after work and noticed subtle changes in our driveway.  First, I saw large oil stains along the drive.  Based on my years with Jeff I know this is a sure sign of a tow truck visit.   Also based on my history with Jeff, I know that tow trucks only come to our property to make deliveries.  Because I’m not lucky enough to have anything hauled away.  Next, I noticed that the Ford truck under the truck cover at the end of the drive appeared to be substantially shorter than the truck that was in the same spot when I left for work in the morning.

People, contrary to popular belief, I am not a moron.  A switcheroo had taken place behind my back.  Total.  Marriage. Foul.  The penalties would be swift.

I entered the house, walked right up to Jeff and here’s what transpired:

LAB: “What’s under the truck cover?”
Jeff: “A 1971 Ford F-100, same as always.”
LAB: “You sure that’s what you’re going with?  I know it’s a different truck because the one parked in the driveway doesn’t have an 8-foot bed.” See how observant I am!  Nothing gets past me!
Jeff:  “Well it’s not the *same* truck, but it’s a Ford F-100.”
LAB: “Uh huh.  Where did this mysteriously different Ford F-100 come from?”
Jeff: “I had it towed in.  For parts.”
LAB: “Uh huh. Where’s the other truck?”
Jeff: “I rented a parking spot for it at the storage place around the corner.  It’s just for 30 days, so I can strip it of the parts I need and bring the other one back.”
LAB: “Uh huh.”
Jeff: “What?”
LAB: “Seriously?  You bought another parts car after we just got rid of that piece of crap LTD you bought for parts?”
Jeff: “Of course.  The LTD had already been stripped. What’s the problem?”
LAB: “You brought another piece of shit car in here without telling me!  I thought we agreed: talk first, buy later.”

And here it comes people.  The zinger:

Jeff: “You told me that you didn’t want to hear another goddamn word about cars, remember?  As I recall, you also added the word EVER.” 

Touché, Jeff.  You win this one.

I know what you guys are thinking:  LAB, you make this shit up just to amuse yourself.

Nope.  Not only did he tow in a complete POS truck, but it’s full of tires & trash.  Which I hope didn’t cost extra.  Behold our new acquisition!

 Here's the proud owner, taking his own photos of his new pride & joy:
 Ain't she a beauty?
 And complete with bald, dead, smelly tires in the cab!
 Not sure where the trash ends and the truck begins:

I was smart enough not to ask Jeff how much he paid for this fine item. Although I was seriously tempted to ask him if he back charged the previous owner for trash removal.  I totally brought this one on myself.  Won't happen again.