Monday, July 31, 2006

Just Not My Week

So, today's scolding by the Big Men on Campus wasn't the only thing sour in my world: had a huge fight with hunky yesterday and had a swap go pretty dang badly last week. Needless to say, it's just not sunny in Pammy's world right now.

The fight with hunky was ugly. It started out with something stupid; he interrupted me when I was watching a television show, and I snapped at him. Instead of letting it go (even though I admitted I was snappy), he ended up calling me an asswipe, which is probably the meanest thing he's ever said to me before. It really hurt my feelings, and I didn't talk to him for most of the day. I told him get out of my face; that I didn't want to see him again, and so he stayed out of my way.

The swap gone bad: joined a "gothic" swap group. The person's whose name I got didn't bother to fill out the survey (the theme was Gothic Romanticism). I didn't even realize the person was a guy until the swap almost went out ("friends only" journal, gender unspecific journal name, no real name given), and I found that out by accident. I sent a brand new DVD, Practical Magic, the book Sabine & Griffin: Griffin & Sabine: An Extraordinary Correspondence, some purple nail polish and toe separators (so he could paint his wife's toe nails purple), and candles.

When he received the package, he posted to the group that my package WASN'T at all goth, and that the one thing he'd say was goth (the movie) he already had. Didn't thank me, either, but after a slamming post like that, I guess I didn't expect him to.

When I read the post to the community, my face actually turned red with embarrassment. At first I apologized, but then I realized "Hey, you big fucking moron, you didn't even fill out the damn survey," and then I adjusted my reply to cover that (well, I was nice enough to leave out the "fucking moron" comment).

The book? Definitely goth. Maybe not "I'm a vampire" goth, but definitely not the average fluffy love story, either. And the candles, well, candles are always goth, but maybe only black ones?

Who knows...anyway, then the moderator (who turns out to be his wife) chastised me also. I wanted to withdraw from the community right then and there, except that I wanted to participate in the next swap (Fairytales gone bad). So... I don't know. I guess I'll give it one more try, but all this has me feeling like I'm a big fat loser in the game of life.

In fact, I think I need a good cry. Good thing it's quitting time...

Someone's In Trouble

And that "someone" would be me. Yep.

Today, there were a series of closed-door sessions. For a company as small as Acme Consulting Company (six people onsite), that's unusual. And, since I wasn't a part of any of the closed door sessions, I had a feeling it might be about me...especially since The Junior Executive didn't engage me in her normal "how was your weekend" Monday morning chatter.

This afternoon, I was called in to talk to El Presidente and The Junior Executive. The Junior Executive began by saying she hates to wear her supervisor hat, but sometimes she has to...and then she pretty much laid into me.

She began by saying that I am excelling at my new role as writer. However...and then that's when I got the one-two punch. Apparently, my phone manner is inconsistent, and two weeks ago, El Presidente’s Wife overheard me say something to (a customer? a telemarketer?) that left her concerned enough to voice those concerns to The Junior Executive, and to ask that maybe I be taken off the phones.

Now, don't get me wrong; I'd love to be taken off the phones. But seriously, I can't think of an incident that particular week that would concern El Presidente’s Wife. Sure, I was stressed being as I was the only person manning the whole office Monday through Thursday. (Well, sort of. El Presidente’s Wife wandered in a few times, and I'm assuming it's one of those times that she overheard me on the phone being less than jocular.) However, honestly, I know when I'm rude, and I don't remember being rude that particular week (not saying I haven't been rude, but mostly to telemarketers, who I frequently just hang up on).

And then there's The Cry Baby. Apparently she found an entry I made on my other journal complaining about how often she calls in sick on Tuesdays and showed it to The Junior Executive, who in turn showed it to El Presidente. They are disappointed in me, and because of me, had to revise the Acme External Service Standards to include a new action item: Other - No "public" discussion of personal company issues or employee issues.

So, The Junior Executive told me that she had no idea why I would do something like that, knowing that both she and The Cry Baby had access to the site. She even went as far as to say I gave them the address. NOT TRUE. I never gave either of them the web address for my journal; they found it on their own. And even though I didn't mention the company by name, The Junior Executive is mad because her name is on the entry (not in the body, in the comments) and also The Cry Baby's.

Boo hoo. But of course, now probably all my entries will be "friends only." Most are now, anyway. Not sure why I didn't mark that particular entry private, but I didn't, and now I'm in trouble. (Strangely enough, shortly after posting the entry I had the feeling it would come back to bite me in the butt. Why don't I ever listen to my "feelings"?)

The Junior Executive went on to say that when The Cry Baby calls in sick, I'm cold to her the next day. She basically told me to lighten up; that Acme's policy is that if someone calls in sick, they're sick, and if it becomes a problem, then they will get talked to. So, basically what she said is The Cry Baby can elongate her weekends as often as she wants to, because she is a valued employee, whereas I am treading water, and if I know what's good for me, I won't call in sick for quite awhile.

She also harangued me some more about The Cry Baby. She said that she had hoped I would've taken her out for coffee a while ago, and instead of bugging me about it, she decided to just step back and see what I would do. Well, newsflash: she said it might be nice, but she didn't feel it was necessary. And since I also felt it wasn't necessary to spend more time with The Cry Baby than I had to in the office, I just didn't do it. But of course, now I'm in trouble for not doing what she was hoping I would do.

Which brings me to the next point: my raise. I honestly thought they were going to take it back! She talked about it, and how I haven't lived up to their expectations, etc. Then she said that I am supposed to be coming to her on a regular (weekly? monthly? bi-monthly?) basis, and saying, "The Junior Executive, gee, I would sure like to have some more work put on my plate. Challenge me! Give me more." (And I know this sounds like I'm making it up, however that's what she said, basically word for word.) And since I haven't done that, I am in trouble.

She said it was all part of the original deal: That I would ask her for more work, grow my job, "RELISH" the opportunity to get so much work that my inbox would be overflowing (again, I do not exaggerate). Now, I never remember her saying that. I do remember both her and El Presidente saying that they would expect my job role to increase, and The Junior Executive saying that she would be giving me more of her workload and training me on it.

She did not do that. Yet, I'm the bad guy because, guess what?, I should've been ASKING for more work.

Then they both asked me if I even really want to be part of Acme. They said they didn't expect an answer today, but that they'd like me to think long and hard about it tonight, and maybe this entire week, and get back to them on that. They said that in many ways, I do not fit into the Acme mold, which is an exuberant, joyful personality, always asking for more work, and turning my head the other way when people abuse the Acme sick policy. (Okay, so I made that last part up, but it was eluded to...)

The Junior Executive mentioned several times that she doesn't like to confront me because she's scared to. Well, that's not my problem. I've never snapped at her. I've never given her any reason not to approach me. And yet, it's my fault that she doesn't feel that she can approach me to give me more work.

El Presidente concluded the session by saying that he does see a lot of potential in me, and believes I have what it takes to be an "Acme Ace employee." However, some of my personality quirks concern them, so please think about if I just want a job or if I want a job with Acme.

Which brings me to Todd, who just this weekend sat me down and said "Honey, what are you going to do about your job?" He knows I'm unhappy here. In so many ways, navigating Acme country is a lot like navigating life with my folks. There are a lot of landmines around, and I just never really know when I'm going to step on one.

Basically, The Junior Executive wants me to be a mind reader. She wants me to be "proactive" (and if I hear that word one more time, I think I am going to need a lobotomy) and come to her. And as much as I'd like to be that kind of person, I'm not. I like to skate. I went through most of my whole adult life without skates. I did everything the hard way in the Army and in my first few jobs afterwards. But at Acme, they just sort of gave me some stuff to do, and I do it. I don't look for more, but if they give me more, I will take it on and excel at it (oh, I guess unless it involves answering the phones...).

If this was the Bay Area, there's be no thinking involved. I'd give my notice, and get a new job. But this is Reno, and the job market (for someone like me who hasn't finished college) consists of casino work, warehouse work, or receptionist work, all of which pay a pittance. And yes, I like my Fridays off.

So what's a girl with a poor phone personality to do?

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Sleeping Like The Rich

Last month, hunky bought a Temper-Pedic pillow top bed. It was supposed to be delivered within ten days, but the "holiday" (which consisted of only one day in the middle of the week) somehow managed to screw up arrival, and the bed wasn't delivered until yesterday.

Now, getting this bed in the first place was a big production. Shopping for the bed took several days, test snoozing community beds at several showrooms around Reno. Throw in the occasional argument, a few pushy salesmen, and a very tired service dog and it made for one very miserable weekend.

Fast forward to the weekend before delivery, when Todd still hadn't done anything about the trail of books and packages he had that made a little wide-ass trail from the entranceway, up the stairs, to the upstairs hallway and bedroom. There was no way the deliverymen would be able to navigate through that mess, so I spent most of my WEEKEND ALONE - the one I was looking forward to - cleaning up the mess so Todd wouldn't have to deal with it when he came home from his trip.

What do I get for my effort? No thanks, and a whole lot of grief yesterday. When I got home, the bed was there all right. And so was a brand new trail of crap from the - yes - entranceway, up the stairs, and ending in the bedroom.

Todd blames the deliverymen. He said they pushed crap out of the way, through books on the floor, etc, so they could have enough room to put the bed together. Yes, they might have, but you'd THINK he'd have the good grace to straighten it all up.

But he didn't.

Why not? "Because I was tired from dealing with the deliverymen."

Oh yes, I'm sure that was taxing. Not, certainly NOT as taxing as my WHOLE WEEKEND SPENT PUTTING HIS CRAP AWAY. Okay, so some of the stuff was mine...still...

After seeing the trail of mess, I needed a drink. I made the mistake of going into the kitchen, where I was confronted with yet another one of my pet peeves: a pile of dirty dishes, on the floor, in the sink, on the counter. The dishwasher light was off, so I opened it up, and what did I see? A whole dishwasher full of CLEAN dishes. This is my absolute pet peeve: when hunky takes out one or two clean items from the dishwasher, leaving the rest of it for me to put away.

I wanted to scream.

Instead, I just started throwing things around the house. Yes, very mature, I know, but also somewhat therapeutic.

I never did get my drink. Instead, I got into an argument with Todd, and then I decided to throw some more things, just for fun.

We finally made up before bed, so I crawled into the nice, new $8,000 bed to sleep like the rich do.

I don't think I slept like the rich. No, I woke up several times because my arm was asleep, and several more times because my hip hurt. I think my chiropractor might be right: a Temper-Pedic bed might just not be the bed for me.

But for $8,000, you can bet that's where I'll be sleeping for the next ten years (or until hunky kicks me out, whichever comes first.)


Next Tuesday is Lughnasadh, and I think I'm going to do something to celebrate. My Risting instructor challenged us all participate in one full year of sabbats, and I think I'm up for the challenge.

Since I'll be in class that night, whatever I do will be small. I'm thinking of making some (low carb) blueberry muffins to bring to class, and for dinner that night do some sort of special Lammas spread. Not too elaborate, after all, I will be rushing to get through dinner before class begins. However, I've been perusing the 'Net, and came up with a few simple ideas that shouldn't eat up all my time.

Since Lughnsadh is also a good time for prosperity spells, I think it's high time for me to do one.

I also found a great "new job" spell. I think it might be about time to employ that one!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Old Friends

When I was in high school, I didn't have many friends. However, I did have a few, and Kathy R. was one of them.

I don't remember us hanging out after school or that sort of thing, but I know we had a few classes together and talked about the boys things we were interested in. I thought of her as way cooler than I was (she like Pat Travers, and wore funky clothes), yet somehow, despite her cache of cool, we still got along.

I've thought of Kathy on and off through the years, but being as my bad memory and lack of a school year book prevented me from remembering her last name, I didn't do anything about it (you know, like try to track her down). So, imagine my surprise when I received a email from her last week.

It was fun to hear from her. But then I went and stuck my keypad in my ass, and I haven't heard from her again. What was my crime? My lame sense of humor.

You see, even though I've been on the Internet for well over a decade now, I sometimes forget that my sense of humor does not translate easily over the wires. So, when she told me about her three marriages, two kids, and a relationship that ended with a kid but not in a marriage, I wrote her back about the fact that my first real long-term relationship didn't even happen until 8 years ago.

Yeah, that doesn't sound so bad, now does it?

Well, except it might be the way I wrote it... It went a little something like this:
Wow! You've had a lot of serious relationships! I don't mean that in a judgmental way; I guess I was just a late bloomer! I went into the Army right after high school (I graduated six months early, and went in right after that; not sure if you knew). Anyway, I didn't really date much. Oh, I had lots of first dates, etc, after I got to my first permanent party assignment, but most guys just wanted to nail the new girl, and I knew that, so I kept my legs crossed and that sort of hampered my love life.

So, in my joking attempt to explain my lack of social connectiveness with the male species, I instead made it sound as if she opened up her legs on every date she went on.

Nice, Pamela. Really nice.

It's been over a week since I sent that email, and I don't expect a reply now. Hopefully I won't piss off the next person that contacts me from since there are probably only two people left that would contact me, anyway.

That's what I get for keeping my legs crossed during high school, I guess.

A Very Brady Weekend

TVLand had a Brady Bunch marathon this weekend, and while I most certainly didn't watch the whole thing, I will admit to getting my fill of the Brady kids this weekend.

See, hunky was away so I took the opportunity to watch the Brady Bunch marathon pack up his books - you know, the books that were in the main entranceway, on the stairs and by the bed. This way, when the deliverymen arrive tomorrow with our brand new Tempur-Pedic pillow top bed, they'll actually be able to get through the front door, up the stairs, and into our bedroom to set it up.

While I was doing all of this, I had the Brady Bunch marathon tuned in on both the downstairs and upstairs TV, so that no matter where I was, whether downstairs packing boxes or upstairs making room for those boxes in his office, I was able to hear what the Brady Kids were up to.

After all that moving, a girl's just gotta rest, so last night at 10 p.m., I finally stopped moving boxes, got into my nightgown, and settled down for a Very Brady Reunion. Let me tell you, Maureen McCormick and Florence Henderson are STILL hot. Seeing them on the tube still smokin' after all these years made me want to go to the gym tonight to work out. (Not saying I will go to the gym; just saying I want to go to the gym. Wanting and going are two very different things...)

I'm still disappointed that Christopher Knight was stupid enough to marry Adrienne Curry. Didn't he learn anything from Mike Brady about love?

Oh doesn't matter if he's stupid, I guess. As long as he says "Pork chops and applesauce, that sounds swell," I'll forgive him anything.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Seeing Things

Last night's class centered on glamoury: what it is, what it isn't, and how to do it. It was the most entertaining class we've had by far (and we've had some entertaining classes!).

In just two hours, I transformed a leaf into a feather, my hand into three different things (Schmutzy's back paw, Julia Robert's hand, and my own hand, only beautified with no wrinkles or skin damage), threw water on Jeannie (and she felt it), and threw clouds, smoke, a blanket and light at Denise (and she felt it). During class, I successfully "saw" and felt other's transformations on me: I saw my instructor's hand turn into a fin, felt Jeannie throw fire at me, saw Denise's hand turn from her regular hand into a very beautiful hand, and saw the cloud of light that Denise threw at me.

I only missed a few senses... When Denise and I were working together on guessing if each other's hand was transformed to a beautiful one or an ugly one, I first saw a beautiful hand but then second-guessed myself and saw an ugly hand. I went with ugly, and Denise told me she had transformed her hand to a beautiful (a mother's) hand. I then told her my first instinct was beautiful, but for some reason I hesitated and then saw something else. She told me (something I already know) "Always go with your first instinct."

When Jeannie was throwing something at me, I felt it graze through my hair. I asked her if she touched my hair. She told me that she was actually throwing ping-pong balls at me. However, in the car afterwards, our instructor told us that my instinct was correct in the sense that I probably wouldn't see the ping pong balls, but would feel their effect on me (in this case, one of them whizzed through my hair - which is better than someone whizzing on my hair, or at least I think so).

And yes, we were in the car, because our class took place at Rancho San Rafael park. I am not sure what it is with that park, but I love it. I've only been there three times, and each time I have felt its draw. I wonder if the labyrinth in the park has some sort of magical draw, or if its simply the park itself. Whatever the case, it's a great place for magical endeavors.

This was our first class outside of the "classroom," and that probably enhanced the experience as well.

I can't wait to try out more glamoury. It really is probably the most magical fun I've had since I started on this journey!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

High And Low

Sunday, hunky left for Long Beach, California, where he'll be all week earning credits so he can keep his various computer industry certifications. And every time he takes a trip, the day before is a nightmare. Translation: Saturday, normally a day for fun for people all around the globe was a nightmare for me.

See, he waits until the last minute to pack and get things ready. I guess most people do, but most people don't have Asperger's or OCD, either, so they can usually just fret, pack, and have it all over with in a couple of hours. Not hunky. No, it takes him almost all day to get himself together, and I bear the brunt of the frustration and aggravation while he does so.

Every time he packs for a trip I say to myself, "Next time, I'm spending the day in a hotel." And I forget this oath to myself some time later, until the next time he takes a trip, when I then hit myself in the head with my hand and berate myself for not remembering to save my sanity by treating myself to a day at a hotel, instead of sticking around the house to get blamed for all the things that have "suddenly" come up missing.

This Saturday, of course, was no exception. We spent part of the day running a few errands to get things he needed for the trip. A couple of pairs of jeans. A travel clock that keeps atomic time (essential, right?). Atkins bars for the trip. Etc.

When we got home, I unpacked his stuff so he could start getting himself ready. Then he (finally) unpacked from his last trip (in November), and I washed all the items he said he needed (most of which he ended up leaving at home). And that's basically all I could do for him, because he knew what he needed and where to find it. Or so I thought.

After placing a load of laundry in for him, hunky happened to come downstairs searching for his toiletries kit. "Where is it? Have you seen it?" I told him I saw one upstairs, and he snapped at me, "No, that's not the right one. I want the small one." When I told him I hadn't seen it, he looked at me for a long time, then muttered something about how I'm always moving things, and stomped upstairs.

For the next 45 minutes, he pretended to look for the toiletry kit. I say "pretend," because basically what he really did was stomp around the house saying "I need my toiletry kit. I need my medicine. Where is it?" It's almost as if he thought that by making a lot of noise and reaffirming its importance, the toiletry kit would miraculously appear out of nowhere and present itself to be packed.

During the time he spent "looking" for said toiletry kit, I actually spent a little time looking for it. I looked in the upstairs bathroom and closet. I looked in a few boxes he brought in from his last trip. But I didn't see it.

So, finally I started doing my own thing, which seemed to infuriate him. "I know you moved it. You are always moving things and putting things away. This is why I don't like you to touch my stuff."

"I didn't touch it. I haven't even seen it!"

Of course, he didn't believe me.

The last time he stomped downstairs, he threatened me with the following: "I'm going to tear the house apart to look for it and it's not going to be pretty." What I didn't say was "too late, buddy," because he'd already made a mess of things by throwing other stuff around the house. I mean, really, how much worse was it going to get?

After making the threat, he glared at me, and then went back upstairs to his office. Because, you know, he was going to find the toiletry kit by Googling it on his computer. (BTW, if you haven't guessed already, most of his "looking" for the toiletry kit seemed to take place in his office, in front of his computer.)

Despite his complete irrationality, I decided to look for the toiletry kit one more time. I went into the downstairs bathroom - a room I never use - and there it was, sitting on top of the toilet. Where he left it.

I grabbed the sucker, went straight into his office without knocking (normally a punishable offense) and said, "Here is your toiletry kit, and guess where I found it? In the bathroom YOU USE, right where you left it."

Sheepish and shamed, he thanked me. He mumbled something unintelligible after that, and I asked him if he even thought to look in the downstairs bathroom. He said "No. I didn't think it would be in there." "Um, well, did you think it was going to be right in front of your computer?" At least he had the grace to laugh at himself after that.

I then asked him if he had found all the computer items he needed (another thing he blamed me for: the missing computer pieces). He said that he found almost everything he needed in, get this, his computer case. Yes. You know, the place where his laptop stuff would most likely be. Then he says, "I also found (insert name of the computer peripheral I have since forgotten here)." As he mentioned this while I was on my way out of the office, I stopped in my tracks. The name of the now forgotten item sounded very familiar.

Wait. Just wait a gosh durn minute…

"Hey, haven't you been accusing me of taking that part for the last few months?"

"Um, yes, I guess I have been. Sorry."

After that, I went into my office, closed the door and went to sleep. And that protected me from his disorganization until Sunday morning, when I took him to the airport.

Which is another story altogether... but seriously, not a bad one.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Doggie Style

Last night, I had the most interesting dream. In it, I started petting a rather large dog. I loved the feel of it, so I put my arms around it. Then it spoke to me, and made it clear that it wanted me in a sexual way.

While I was strangely attracted to it, I was also appalled. I was concerned about Todd and what he would think. I wasn't ready to cheat on him, even if it was with a dog. Then the dog got stalkerish and mean. Todd arrived, and I told him about the dog and its advances, but he didn't really believe me, which was compounded at the fact that the dog wouldn't talk in front of Todd. At some point, I woke up without the dream really ending.

That's got to be one of the most colorful dreams I've had in the longest time...

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

My Cauldron

Ever since the night of my self-dedication ritual, when I almost caused a small fire in my office, I've wanted a cauldron. One with a lid. Cast iron. Black. So, when I heard the new Reno store, Avalon's Gate, had cauldrons, I couldn't wait to get there.

Unfortunately for me, their grand opening was on Saturday, when I was in the Bay Area. So I had to wait for Monday to roll around before I could go there to get my cauldron. I was itchy just thinking about it. I wanted there to be at least one cauldron left... I lucked out, there were several.

As I looked at the cauldrons on the shelf, the most beat up one called out to me. "Hey, you with the glasses. Buy me."

"Um, I wanted one that wasn't quite so beat up looking. Thank you, anyway."

"Hey! Stop looking at the fatter one next to me. Buy me. I'm the one you want."

"Seriously, dude. I was hoping for a new one that actually looks new."

"Oh come on. Give a cauldron a break. It's going to get beat up anyway. Think of it this way: the first time you ding me, you won't feel badly about it, as I'm already dinged up."

I kept pushing the cauldron's bossy voice out of my head, and continued to look at the cauldrons. However, despite the fact that the one next to it was the same price and fatter, or the more expensive one had decorative Celtic knots on it, the dinged up cauldron just seemed like it was supposed to go home with me.

"Oh alright...come on, let's get you paid for."

As I walked over to the cashier, one of the owners came out of the backroom. Michelle (and no, not Acme's Michelle) said "Hey Peej! It's good to see you." We started talking about the store, the successful grand opening, and went on to the subject of cauldrons. I told her about the fire I almost started during my self-dedication ritual, and how happy I was to finally be getting a cauldron. Then I mentioned that I actually wanted one of the more pristine cauldrons, but this one insisted on going home with me. She said "Yeah, it's funny how some of this stuff just insists on going home with you, even though you might think you're interested in something else."

Funny, indeed.

All I know is I went home with a mouthy cauldron. Now I just got to figure out what to do with it.

Oh My Aching Back

Ever since the day I took Schmutzy to the vet three weeks ago (the day that I fought valiantly to get him into the pet carrier), my back has been hurting. I finally decided it was time to do something about it besides complain, so I went to see a chiropractor yesterday.

First, let me say I really like her. That's right. "Her." I looked for a woman chiropractor, and found that there is only one approved by my health insurance plan. Nothing against male doctors, but I much prefer to deal with females, especially if they're going to see bits and pieces of me that hunky doesn't even get to see often.

Unfortunately, though, the appointment pretty much took all day. I was at the chiropractic office for over two hours, and then I had to go to Washoe for x-rays, which took another two hours. In between, I visited the new metaphysical store, Avalon's Gate, to buy a cauldron. (More on that later, perhaps...)

At 2:00 p.m., when I still hadn't been called in for my x-rays, I called Chris to let her know I wouldn't be back in. She said she assumed that was the case. I honestly felt bad. I knew she was alone with Dennis, and I felt she could've used the help.

After all was said and done, my back felt better, for the first time in weeks. Last night, though, the throbbing came back. I have another appointment on Thursday, and this one will probably be more intense, as the chiropractor didn't want to do too much adjusting yesterday before the x-rays were in.

Hopefully I'll finally get this back pain under control. I've lived with it for so long, it seems normal, even though, of course, it isn't.