Friday, July 28, 2006

CAFFEINE! You'll sleep when you're DEAD!!

Argfasdf, Good Morning.

I am not even having caffeine this morning because I am afraid of what it will do to me!
It was a late night last night (officially I was awake til 1 am with tossing and turning and I believe a wee hours of the morning pee cause I made myself pound a poland spring late last night. While I am tired now and I feel hungover, I also feel very accomplished. Why you ask? Because in the last 24 hours I have done the following:

-go to work (ok I would've done this anyways, but this is to emphasize that I put in an 8 hour day!)
-go to the paper source for ribbon and wrapping
-go to joann's for polyfill, thread, and fabric
-go to the supermarket
-make 18 cannolis for bookclub
-finish boyfriend's secret bday gift

-finish making a wee bunny for baby shower, as well as put the finishing touches on mittens and bonnet
-went to bookclub
-found out how to make a huge fuss about the disgusting deforestation and development down the street (insert major fist pump here. though it may not make a difference, I know now who to bother. awesome, now I just need to write letters)
-packed for my NY trip
-cleaned my room so it looks "decent"
-showed up to work an hour early
-went to my Friday meeting
-cashed out on an old retirement fund so I can buy a new computer for grad school
-contacted Tufts about financial aid
-conviced my sweet dad to move my hearing for a car accident I was in in February 2005
(which was easy because I got the notice and burst into tears, of COURSE it's during the one weekend in August I am heading to NY for a wedding, and the hearing is in PLYMOUTH. Boston, no prob, I would've done it, and alone, though my dad is insistent that he be there, but no, it's Plymouth on Friday afternoon, pretty much exactly when I am supposed to be on the bus. I said weepily that I would go, cause I would. I mean it's my car, and I got it into the accident. I didn't request the hearing technically, my father insisted that I do that, so I actually think a hearing is completely fruitless, but I am doing it to please him, and because if, by some miracle of God, the decision was reversed, I would get my deductible ($1,000) back, plus about $600 backpay from the insurace company, and about a $400 reduction in yearly insurance costs....basically I was all about showing when I should've but then I realized the day, time, and location and lost it. But dad may take care of moving the date :))

During all this I realized that I really hadn't eaten much since lunch yesterday, and lunch was a fruit salad and a peach (I didn't eat the veg salad) I did have 2 cannolis at bookclub and iced tea, but I was feeling iffy, so I schlepped to Dunkin' Donuts and got a fruit smoothie and low-fat blueberry muffin to perk me up a wee bit. Now I am contemplating doing some more work until I leave in an horu and a half. blah, I am so sleepy now that my tummy is satisfied :P

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

debtor's prison

Because I have been accepted to the School of Graduate and Professional Studies program at Tufts University this fall...(pause)

*takes moment to bow deeply acknowledgeing the feat of getting in*

(resume)......I have been trying desperately, desperatel, DESPERATELY to get out of debt. My debt isn't humongous (well...let's say that not including the student loan I took out for my bachelor's degree, it's under $10,000) but it's mere presence is a great annoyance. When I look at the pitiful amount I put in savings each week ($20!! only $20!!) I feel so inadequate. Someone like me should be throwing money in savings and practically debt free! I still live with my parents!! True, I do pay all my bills, but let's face it people, I don't have to come up with rent every month. I try to imagine my life with that and I can't, not with a car and car insurance and loans, etc etc. The very worst of it is the credit card debt I've accrued. Yes, a huge amount of it is Kenya's fault, that's true, but what was I to do, not go?

Anyways, I have come up with a debt elimination plan which may prove to be worth while. I have a set amount I set aside weekly. While this seemed like the perfect plan at first, it isn't flawless, because midway through the month I dumbly realized that not all of my bills are due at the end of the month when I have all this money saved and set aside. Oh well, it's a minor glitch in the road. Things should get better. I definitely have challenges ahead and I know that, but I also know that one of my credit card balances has been reduced by half since I started this plan two months ago, which makes me happy.

There are disappointments and hardships. There always seem to be an endless string of weddings and babies and birthdays and coming up with gifts has been tricky, but if I can just get to September I know I'll be ok...of course, then school comes and I'll have a whole other fish to fry. But for now, I am trying to stick to the budget. I'm trying to evaluate whether or not I need something before I buy it and have started to plan things ahead so I can budget....yes, Christmas presents have already been thought of. Cause I'm anal like that. I just feel like I have to get myself in order. School has been one part of that quest, and I'm going to make finances, the other, and just keep imagining how good life will be with an extra $325 a month when I'm done paying off my car -_-

Addendum (just like a doctor's note, LOL)
I wrote that post while falling asleep, and it probably be seems morose....while it is true, I am not morose about my financial situation, and yesterday I had a minor victory in the quest to stop excessively spending. I went to JoAnn's fabrics to get fabric for some wee bunnies (may I take a moment to say that for what it is, JoAnn's is quite good, but I loooong LONG for a truly excellent fabric store in my area...then again, it could lead to the feeding of a deadly addiction...) and I managed to spend on ly $6.00 and I went in wanting to spend no more than $20! $14 below budget! I found a lovely pink fuzzy remnant for $1.11, perfect for the bunny fronts, plus I have old pajama fabric for the back, and together they'll make something quite perfect for a baby. I also got some fat quarters for a dollar each. True I didn't buy everything I needed and still need to get a bit of fabric for a project, I think, and some linen for cross stitch, but first I need to thoroughly search my house in case there is something more appropriate there, as my mother keeps a stash she really doesn't use...So in the end, I think I can pull off this whole living in a budget get out of debt deal.....and still manage to do ok :)

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

muzak meme cause I am so bored at work

muzak (or not) meme
Stolen from everyone (by my sister, from whom I stole it)

Total volume of music files on my computer:
* 664 cause I'm at work....

The last CD I bought was:
* Smithereens CD at the Smith bookstore when I was there for reunion.

Last acquired:
* The Hot 97 Request Line and Now 21, both burned for me by Jam.

Five songs I listen to a lot, or that mean a lot to me:
* I'll Believe Anything - Wolf Parade (I love this, discovered it from dooce and have adopted it. I listen to it when I walk to work from the chain to bring my mood up, and while I run. I love the band's funky sound and the lyrics are amazing)
* Elevator Love Song - The Stars (also from dooce. I love love love it and listen to it on the way out of work to calm the mood down. The lyrics are sad, but I think they would speak to a lot of people from my particular generation, even if they don't directly refer to me.)
* Portions for Foxes - Rilo Kiley (this one isn't particularly meaningful, more fun to sing and it's on the Grey's Anatomy soundtrack which is permanently trapped in my car's CD player)
* Stranded - Smithereens (also trapped in the car CD player. Plus I love a capella. Unlike all other music I have a small chance in hell of sounding good while singing it because of all the different ranges. Plus this song has beautiful lyrics "It's coming over you, like it's coming over me, I'm crashing like a tidal wave, that drags me out to sea, I wanna be with you, if you wanna be with me, I'm crashing like a tidal wave, and I don't wanna be, STRANDED)
* I had Little Earthquakes by Tori as the last one cause it was the last one I was blasting in the car, but instead I'm gonna put "I'm Sorry" by Jem, because I love playing this song at work, it REALLY fits.

Top five genres:
* unknown
* vocal
* workout
(because I am sad and haven't classified my songs)

Five people to whom I’m passing the baton (I am also tagging the unsuspecting with this...):
hahahah pretty much no one, but that's ok
- - - - - - - - -

Sort by Song
First Song: 1 Thing (Party Blend) - Ty Boogie (yeah I don't even know it, ha ha)
Last Song: You'll Keep Me Then? - Out of Africa soundtrack (this clip breaks my heart everytime I hear it)

Sort by Time
Shortest Song: "Save Me Jebus!" - Homer Simpson (0:12) (same as Ame, amazing)
Longest Song: Konstantine - Something Corporate (9:37)

Sort by Artist
First Artist: 50 Cent (Disco Inferno - oh the shame)
Last Artist: Various (Clarinet Concerto in A Minor, Mozart, from "Out of Africa" soundtrack)

Sort by Album
First Album: 12/04 (which Amy burned for me)
Last Album: Work It (workout songs, also burnd by Amy)

Search the Keyword--song title only--and see how many songs appear:

"Sex": 1
"Death": 1
"Love": 22
"You": 59
"Me": 117
"Drug": 0
"Hate": 3

Shuffle your library and list the first five songs. No padding your playlist you hipster, you. Be honest, or I'll kill you.

1. Let's Get Loud - J Lo
2. A swahili song that is fabulous, but I don't know the name of it - I call it the "shakin song" cause of the lyrics
3. In My Life - Judy Collins
4. Karma - Alicia Keys
5. The Chokin' Kind - Joss Stone

Total music: 664, 5:08, 7,238KB

disturbed, then sad, then angry

This morning I was driving to work, same as always. I pulled out of my street onto a more main, yet still heavily wooded road. As I drove down Union Street, I nearly died of shocked as I looked to my left and saw that about 4 acres of land had been clear cut and a group of men were standing next to their big machines having a chat. We had heard that the land was being looked at for houses, but were hoping that the land wouldn't perk due to the heavy rain we've had, or the builders would lose interest. Then today without warning, the trees are gone. There will probably be houses there by the end of the summer.

I was shocked to see this, so horrified that I nearly drove off the road into someone's split rail fence. I quickly straightened the wheel, but it still felt like a punch in the stomach. A few seconds passed and I got over the shock and horror, and then it was replaced by incredible sadness, a sadness that, yet again, a piece of my town has been clear cut for development. It makes me ill to see piece by piece the town turning from woods and field to hideous 1 acre plots upon which million dollar houses are built. I got a panicky feeling when I thought about the trees being cut down. What if there were bird's nests in there? Then I thought of the wildlife. This tract of land has been unoccupied for who knows how long. A house across the street was built in 1820 or so, so we can safely assume that there hasn't been anyone on that land since then, and even if it was at one point farm land, it's been resting for a very long time, long enough to grow thick stands of pines. So for the past 150 to 200 years or so, no one has touched that land and it's been wild, hosting who knows how many types of birds and animals and plants and insects. Had they been crushed, obliterated or had they survived to escape? I can only wonder.

Finally, sitting here now, all I feel is an intense rage for people who could show such disregard for the world around them. I feel disappointed and sad for the people who look at a tract of forest and see it plowed down and replaced by houses. I am disgusted by people who consume, consume, consume, knocking down forests and displacing wildlife so they can live in a 4,000 square foot house and park their escalade in the driveway. People may listen to me or read this and think 'there goes that raging tree-hugging liberal again' but it's not just the wildlife I'm worried about. I do understand people need a space on this planet too, but the implications of building on that piece of land may be greater than anyone anticipates. Cutting down trees is the first issue. As soon as that is done, you lose a major absorber of ground water, which would be an issue on this piece of land because it is damp and has a tendency to flood. You reduce the amount of oxygen around you (which might not be noticed) and your house is going to bake in the summer sun, thus driving up the cost of air conditioning the house (because of course, these people will have central air and will probably never open the windows). Traffic will increase on road as well. Also, because a major wildlife corridor has been fragmented, human wildlife interaction is inevitable. Deer will probably eat bushes and trees, and the residents will see coyotes in their yard, and probably flip out about it too. But you know what? You get what you deserve. For doing this, for RAPING the land, I hope their basements flood everytime it rains. I hope the sun heats their house so unbearably in the summer that no amount of AC will ever make them comfortable. I hope deer eat their bushes, and coyotes eat their cats (or their children. Ok, I don't wish coyotes eat their cats, cause hey, the cats didn't do they shouldn't be for the kids, I hope they don't get eaten, but I hope they are so terrified that they don't play outside. ha. there!). I hope they disturb nests of insects and mice and their houses are infested. Thinking of these things makes me smile, but in the end, they do no good, because even if this happnes, what's done is done. The forest is clear cut and gone, and even if by some strange miracle the builders choose not to build, I won't ever see that forest again, not in my lifetime.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Starbucks Cup #138 That's Been on my desk for 3 weeks waiting to be entered and might be moldy

The Way I See It #138

The good life is the middle way
Between ambition and compassion
Between action and reflection
Between company and solitude
Between hedonism and abstinence
Between passion and judgement
Between the cup of coffee
and the glass of wine.

--Jay McInerney
Author of Bright Lights, Big City
and The Good Life.

And yes, I opened the cup to see if it was moldy. NOt moldy as much as fermented and very very smelly. Ew. Throwing it away now. The end!