Wednesday, December 29, 2004

All over the place...

Today was really quite bad and kind of good all in one big package. Which made it all kind of exhausting. Here's some info:

  • SPAMALOT was wonderful! I'm not even a Monty Python nerd like my sister and I quite liked it. It seems a little strange to laugh at fart jokes, watch a glittery dance number and then laugh at boob jokes. What a good show though, if you have the time and money, go see it while its still available in Chicago. Its going to be a huge hit on Broadway. You'll regret it...
  • After seeing SPAMALOT I got home quite late and even after a fun night I still ended up tired and crabby this morning.
  • I got the info on my raise/bonus (who knew there would be a bonus?? Yay for me!) and it was much better than i expected. I guess after hearing the bitters complain about how cheap my employer is (and my dad has said it too) I imagined they would try to cheese me. You know, well, we're giving you a 5% raise. Which would include cost of living and really not be a raise at all. But no, I'm happy with my raise. Plus, I am promoted. So its all up from here.
  • Insurance, especially health insurance can kiss my ass! Well, really only Humana. I hate them. On the positive for health insurance, United actually paid for my whole allergist appointment! We'll see about the shots. But Humana, shit those bastards sent me to collections for something i never got a bill for in the first place. I was very angry and took it out on my Dad...sorry Dad.
  • Too excited to come back to my apartment and just sit. But then my kitchen was so messy I decided to clean. And my plan to play RollerCoaster tycoon was thwarted by some game gliche that kicks me out whenever I start getting anywhere. I'll try to figure that one out this weekend.

And now, could be 100,000 people dead in the scariest natural disaster since, well, ever in my lifetime. I'm thinking I should make a donation, and I think the rest of you should too...because I just have a bad feeling about how Bush is going to handle this. This is when the big nations should step up, but it seems unlikely. How scary is it that one day the world is normal and the next people rotting everywhere because of a huge earthquake. Just shows you how unpredictable the world is. Note to readers: My sister is far more eloquent than I am, i tend to write from humor, since thats how I think. So read her entry on this, i didn't even know she'd written it when I wrote this entry.

Next up: California falls in the ocean.

I hope all have a very safe and happy New Year. I'm headed home to see a long-lost relative and have a quiet Eve, because I don't really enjoy this holiday.

Monday, December 27, 2004

Christmas high school style..

I don't mean that in a bad way all you high school haters. I just mean I spent tonight with my good friends from high school celebrating our late Christmas. Some of us don't live in the same state (Ok, 1 out of 4) and the rest of us are still in the area. But it was nice. Its fun to just be girls.

I am seriously tired because my radiator sounded like this last night: eeeeeeeeeeeeee swwooosh. eeeeeeeeeeeeeeee swoosh. Over and over. It was hideous. I'm going to try turning it off tonight and seeing how cold it gets. Plus, the new pillow...not so good. I may just have to stick with the old rotty one. My sleep issues are intense, I cannot imagine adding a second party. You know how people used to sleep in twin beds...that might be me if i ever get married or live with someone (only our twin beds would not even be in the same room). I thought I was getting better at sleeping...guess not.

Started my allergy shots today. Must say, I was expecting some huge mutant needle. It was tiny, and the "injection" lasted maybe 2 seconds. I was talking to her and she grabbed my arm fat (yes please do visualize this, it was a little humiliating) and stuck the needle in before I was even gearing up for it. And in my shock and awe at how quickly the injection was over I managed to again not pay attention while she did the other arm (yes i am doing two shots, one for cat the other for other allergies. i'm waiting to see on the cost issue...if the health insurance is stingy then i'll lean towards just cat).

All in all, a full day. But in a good way. And tomorrow...SpamALot. Should be cracking good fun (yes, cracking). Its a great adjective.

Sunday, December 26, 2004


Hello all. Let me start with a little shock, a little giggle about the comment on the last entry. Someone clearly has issues with cat lovers. I quite enjoyed that comment, even if it was slightly snappy. Merry Christmas dog lover...(and FYI, i too like dogs, and will have one someday, but as a person with an apartment that is unfair. Plus, i'm not home all day, dogs need to be walked etc.)

The holidays were merry. I enjoyed spending time with all my crazy relatives. There's not a sane one in the bunch (myself included). I hope everybody liked their presents. I got tons of good stuff and spent most of this afternoon cleaning all my new kitchen items (pots, crockery, tupperware...and lots of it). Parents and grandparents were extremely generous, I am one lucky duck.

I hope everyone out there enjoyed the holidays as much as I did. I hope you're all safe and happy and well fed. Now I'm going to bed. I have a long week ahead...with a New Years Eve dud at the end....

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

One more before Christmas...

There was tons of Christmas cheer at the office today that I was almost sad to be taking a half day. I got more presents than I expected, since I expected zero and received from three different people. One is almost ugly, but I am strangely attracted to it. But sometimes I do tend to be attracted to the ugly. I had a weird moment when the vice president hugged me while my hands were full...and I tend towards "bad with hugs" anyway, so it was a little awkward. I think i got through it alive and with dignity.

So I had a half day because I wanted to test my allergy to cats. My cat at home, Allie aka binker, sometimes makes my eyes itch like a beast. So i thought it may be smart to find out if there was anything i could do about it. Well, it turns out I am allergic to cats and the recommended solution: avoidance. Which is not an option. So I can either wait and get one of these mutants (i don't know, but that creeps me out), suffer with allergy pills or start allergy shots. At the beginning (8-9 months) I get a shot once a week..then i move up to twice a week etc. These shots are expensive. But i need something else alive in this apartment.

Isn't it a bitch that I'm not allergic to dogs (the complicated pet)?

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Christmas is coming...

The goose is getting fat...

In this instance, the goose is me. But the cookies, chocolate and fudge are well worth it. And I'm enjoying imagining all the good eats i'll be having this weekend. After that...its back to weightwatchers for me.

I'm having a good day for no particular reason. Everyone at work was cheery, no bad moods or bad phone calls from pushy people. My review was good, although I would have preferred excellent. There's something about my place of work that makes me believe no one gets excellent. Ever. Stingy with the excellent.

I have stuff to do now. If i don't blog again, Merry Christmas! I hope your holidays are filled with family, friends and love! Oh, and good food.

And if you haven't been here in a while, this is an excellent entry (Yub-Nub) for my favorite it, laugh and be merry for the holidays!

Friday, December 17, 2004

Christmas party antics....

Boy oh boy was it an intensely strange day. A little fill-in: I had my holiday party today, at noon we all left, went to a delicious restaurant (name withheld to protect myself from prying colleagues, just in case...).


I was told beforehand (by a bitter, more on them later) that the party is awkward, and we all try to mingle and then leave as soon as the food is gone. Ok, whoever said that lied. And not a white lie, a big honking juicy lie.

It was nice because I sat next to quiet new girl (ok, new lady, she's married with two small children) and my underwriter. We all bonded. Then time wore on and people started to get maybe a little drunk. Just so you all know, I decided to abstain since my tolerance is non-existent and I did not want to be the drunk girl suggesting we all do a round of shots. I mean, I am trying to prove myself as the youngest. Instead of me, it was a drunk woman (late 50s) suggesting a round of shots. 12 people said yes. There are roughly 20 people at our company. I was involved in a conversation about caning, peeing on people and fisting. This is not your average Christmas party here. Oh, and just in case you thought maybe I was some renegade speaking with other outcasts, the dirty conversation involved both vice presidents. I'm blown away by this party.

I never realized that not drinking anything besides water was going to be an issue. But oh boy did I get harassed. Maybe because as some put it, "you're 23, you should be plastered all the time." My response: did that in college. When I try to explain to people that I'm not really like that, I don't enjoy drinking all that much, they don't understand. Eventually, the drunk guy (new guy, very boisterous) was harassing me so much, my boss and company owner threatened him with italian mob connections of my dads (which as far as I know, do not exist). Truly interesting. And cute new guy (not the drunk) was very much cute. Since i found out quiet new girl is married with children, i feel like my competition for cute new guy has decreased (she's very cute). The only competition left is his girlfriend. Who rumor has it, he lives with. I can slay that dragon.....

Then I caught a ride home with "the bitters." This is what I am going to call the people who hate their job, life and everyone around them. During the party most of this crowd remained in one corner overtly making fun of others. My underwriter even commented, you know, its amazing that they do that so openly. These are also the people who surround my cubicle. Lucky me. By sitting there, I have somehow become OK with them. Somehow, I'm accepted in this group because out of their mouths, "You're all right Katiekins, you mind your own business." So, I got to listen to them rip into every little thing the people they don't like did (everyone in the company besides themselves). I was even mentioned (i'm smart because i know who my dad is, and i'm using that to help myself...nice, huh?). Anyway, it was an eye-opener.

Here's my take on things: one girl got ripped on during the car ride for saying that the bitters were the way they are because they don't "play the game" (she said this at dinner where her tongue may have been a little loose, don't worry, she was not in the car). Sure, this whole work thing is politics, and the bitters are on the wrong side completely. But the smart way to look at this is not the way said girl does. You shouldn't play the game. You should just be a respectful, respectable, decent human being, work hard and you'll get where you want to go. I will not be an underwriter because of my dad (although thanks for the "in" dad), he just got my foot in the door. Now that my foots in, it is my job to work for it, not to play for it. I guess the way i see it is that the bitters don't know what hard work is and cannot possibly be happy people, which is why they need to belittle others. But I am happy. I can sit, listen to them and keep my mouth shut and therefore be "accepted." Or I could stoop to their level and rip on them to others. Which is the right way?

Moving on:
A while back, maybe in middle of November, I had a moment with a cute guy on the train. There was a conversation we pretty much had to listen in on and were both smirking, and caught each other and smiled, etc. Yesterday he was on my El again. Not as cute as I remember. But I think he was trying to have a moment again. I sort of panicked. My plan is, next month when I see him again, I'll have the moment. Why not?

On the ride home today a very cute boy and I were making eyes at each other. Its wonderful to see cute boys, be able to almost openly stare and realize you will never see them again. Liberating...

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Complete and utter torture...

Today maybe hasn't been the best. Work was fine, everything was going great and then I get home. No mail. Ok, not a big deal, but still no fun.

I get to my messages. First, the doctor leaves a scary, please call us right away message. I can't really call until tomorrow, but that should be great fun. I assume it'll be nothing. But of course, the urgent message has to make me worry.

And then I decide to call Comcast and tell them they suck. So my basic cable still is unwatchable. I get all the digital channels, but NBC is completely torturous to watch (fuzzy seriously bad shaking double picture with static noises). WGN/WB has faint double picture that might be getting worse, etc. So I call. I tell them the problem still has not been resolved (three scheduled appointments, one cancelled without telling me, so i still spent the sunday at home waiting for the cable guy, the other two actually happened). Ok, that's three Saturday or Sundays wasted. I hate this. I'm being punished for wanting to watch Scrubs. She honestly said to me on the phone, but you have 100s of other channels. But I don't care about the 100s of other channels, give me basic cable.

Every single time my appointment goes like this: Oh, you already have an amplifier. Ok. Let me see the outside. Oh yeah, bad wiring out back, you need a line technician. I'll schedule the appointment for next week, you don't need to be around for that. Problem should be fixed. Three line technicians later, SAME PROBLEM. I feel like screaming. I wish I could switch my cable company, and this next time, if they don't fix it, I'm calling my landlord. My landlord makes us use certain companies for all our utilities. No problems with the power or water or phone, but fucking cable.

I am really upset. Its just the small stuff you know? And i'm sure all you boys out there love to hear this, but i'm hormonal, and the lady being rude and telling me to change the channel makes me cry. And she must know i'm crying because you can't talk like a normal person when you're upset. Maybe if I was a man, and had a deep scary voice they would take me seriously. But instead i have to schedule another useless appointment for Saturday. Where I promise, i know he will tell me that there's nothing he can do and a line technician will be out sometime this week.

I'm going to bed. Maybe this week will get better. I get off early on Friday, maybe i'll be really bad and buy myself a whole chocolate cake to make up for this whole debacle. Maybe sometime in the future i'll be able to watch Scrubs...

Sorry to be such a downer kids, i'm supposed to be in the Christmas spirit. I'll go water my christmas tree now and go to sleep and hope tomorrow will be better.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Winter cheer...

-- I get a little warm in my heart when i think of winter...--

The christmas tree is up! And tinseled! Ok, so i tried to take a picture, but as you can tell, I am not photographer. You really do not get the full effect of the lights and the tinsel. But nothing much I can do. I was getting grief for not posting a picture or blogging for a week or so (sorry masses, I've been really busy decorating, present buying and christmas carding). At the end of each day this weekend my back was KILLING me, so i sat on the couch and felt proud of all i'd accomplished. I wish I could have christmas decorations up year round. My apartment feels homey. But i do think the coffee table helped. I am the kind of person that feels more comfortable in smaller spaces (but not so small as to be claustrophobic), anyway, the coffee table makes the living room feel better to me. Smaller. Is that weird?

So do you ever say something, and then the second its out of your mouth you're like...uh WHAT?? Because I did that today. I don't know if I was a little spacey (ok, i do know, i was...but i woke up at 3am last night with a pounding headache...sidetrack: the weirdest thing happened when I went down at 3am to take advil. My cell phone was lit up. Which only happens if i've just opened it or if someone is calling, neither of which was happening in this case. Ghost maybe??). Back to the point, I was leaving for the day, quite excited to get out of work and come home and eat leftover tacos (good for me for making tacos). One of the vice presidents of my company (read: head honcho) was in the elevator with me. As we were parting for different exits I said, "have a good tomorrow." what i meant to say was "have a good night, see you tomorrow" i think. But it didn't come out like that. She said thanks. How weird of a moment. It is almost a little mortifying.

I'm off to watch Monty Python and the Holy Grail. I know I've seen parts (i've probably seen every part, just not all at once), but i've been told I have to watch it. We're going to Spamalot at the very end of December...

Happy winter! Even with the cold I like the winter. Aaahh, winter.
My living room, with my newly installed coffee table (watch out, there is one wonky leg) and pretty "holographic" snowflake lights in the window. If you haven't been to visit, the fireplace is on the other wall, across from the big couch, the balcony for the second floor looks down at this view (i'm under the overhang for the balcony). More pictures sometime... Posted by Hello
My christmas tree...notice the fuzzy star and the weird extending arm of one branch. But it looks great, and I love it... Posted by Hello

Monday, December 06, 2004

look out! i'm bloggin' again...

I wasn't going to blog today. I have this theory that people don't read your previous blog because they get stuck on your current blog and therefore they miss out on fun things. But I had the weirdest thing happen earlier, and just now i had a bad thing happen. So here they are.

This is me, at the cleaners at 8am:
Me: Hi, i have one pair of pants.
Little asian cleaner man (old): You are tiny! ha ha ha, how tiny are you? You must wear size two.
Me: Um, no.
Him: No, ha ha ha, size 4?
Me: Nope.
Him: What? No, what size you wear?
Me: Uhhh, 8.
Him: (scandalized) What?? (walking around the counter to come and check things out for himself) No way. You're so small.

Ok, yes, this did happen. How could i make this up? At first, i was kind of weirded out, then i was like, hell yeah, i'm tiny. But then I got right back to totally weirded out. It was kind of invasion of my privacy a little and very, very weird. I don't think i enjoyed the thing at all.

And just now, the bad thing that happened is that my sink won't turn off. It's been threatening for weeks. But yes, the bathroom sink will not turn off. I'm concerned that the plinking water will keep me awake. If i'm crabby know why. The landlord's first test....will they pass?

Sunday, December 05, 2004

so this is love...

No I'm not in love. But I did see On the Record, and for some reason thats the one Disney song out of about 60 that got stuck in my head. That and that song from Mulan that Christina Aguilera sang. The four main singers in the musical were pretty mind-blowing as far as the whole singing thing goes. I was asking my mom if she ever wished she could sing like that, i mean, what would it be like to open your mouth and have pure beauty come out? I was saying I could never be on stage, but i'd be belting out songs all the time in my apartment, specifically from the balcony. Even with my horrible tone deaf voice, I plan on staging some wonderful interpretations of Disney songs from my balcony any day now.

As I walk up the stairs in my apartment (duplex) I always notice the one or two VERY hollow stairs at the bottom of the case. I can't help but wonder if sometime back in the day someone stashed hidden treasure. I honestly wonder this. Just goes to show I should not be 23. Anyway, the building is old, there could be good stuff under there. But, here is what would happen if i pried off the stair: the stair would be ruined and unsalvagable and then what the hell do i do? Plus, there would only be animal carcasses and giant mutant hairy spiders in there. But oh how I wonder every time i hit those stairs...

Does anyone remember Bedknobs and Broomsticks? Because while watching Disney last night, I couldn't help but remember some of the old great movies of my childhood...and I somehow keep remembering this one. Anyone? Also, there was a song in On the Record that came from a movie I had never even heard of, "So Dear to My Heart." Any ideas? The song is Lavender Blue. And strangely, the flower place I got my Mom flowers from at Thanksgiving uses a quote from that song on their card. Weird...

Friday, December 03, 2004

just let go...

I've been thinking a lot lately about growing up. Its always so scary to move on from high school to college, because you're a "grown up." Or even turning 21 (which i managed to do with particular style spending hours and hours at Heathrow airport trying to get to Rome on a plan that kept getting delayed). Lately though, I really am growing up.

Everyday on the "L" there are dozens of people that could be roughly my age (lets have a wide range here, between 22 and 30). All of these women look so turned out. In their nice coats, boots, pretty work bags, slick hairdos. They all look old and they all look the same. And then there's me. I have reverted back to a back-pack, i wear sneakers to work and then change, i still have a fuzzy ball on my hat and my coat is mostly a warmth provider and not a fashion statement.

I used to think that this fashionable young working Chicago woman was what I wanted to be. But i don't think i'm capable of such a huge change. I guess I just cannot imagine having aching feet, a freezing head and a backache every night just so that I look good on the ride to and from work. Sure, when i get to work, it's all business. I put on the nice shoes, take off the coat and hat and stow the backpack. Maybe if i had the other mentality, the one where its more important what you look like than how you feel, maybe then what?...maybe then someone would pick me up on the "L"?

I have always been an odd one. I guess certain things I take very seriously, like my work ethic and certain things i don't, like the new trendy coat style. I cannot imagine going on a four hour lunch with a colleague and coming back a little drunk (it happened) or being so unable to do my work that i lie and blame it on someone else (also happens). I take pride in my work. I don't particularly enjoy drinking either, which does sometimes categorize me in the "old lady" section. But at the same time, I love stupid things, like Chicago lit up for Christmas, Harry Potter (oh the third movie was a thrill tonight),my future cats and probably the musical i'll see tomorrow night that is all Disney songs (got some ridicule at work for that, but i stood my ground, i'll like it).

Its just interesting to think that if i wanted to, if i truly tried i could be dressed to the nines on the "L", but screw "What not to Wear," its all lies. That stuff isn't comfortable.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

Ah Chicago..

On my way home from work today, while on the "L" I was quite enjoying the city lights. When you ride the brown line around the loop you can catch a glimpse down State street, and other areas that just look dazzling during Christmas-time. Anyway, I'm always one of the "L" riders who is gazing out the window. People must think I've never seen it before, but its like new every time.

Tonight for some reason I was more awed than usual. Possibly because it was a fair night and I could actually see things out the window. But man, the Chicago theatre sign was amazing. And then I stopped paying attention. Because really, between the loop and Fullerton (my stop), things are kind of residential. I was trying to see christmas trees in windows, but thats all. Except...right after or right before Sedgwick, i can't remember which, the "L" line is running through a fairly low building area. I startled out of my daydream (vivid one, about Gael Garcia Bernal, so attracted to him) to the most beautiful view of the entire city. So clear, and all lit up. I could see from the Hancock clear past the Sears Tower. I throughly recommend gazing out an "L" window on the brown line. Just make sure you're on the left side of the car, next to the window.