Filed under: adorable, anxiety, awesome!, awkward, Bay Area, bragging, family, growing up, kerfuffle, kids these days, life, Love, make it work, Mom, New Mexico, Opinions, parenting, play through, show and tell, simpatico, The Good Man, vacation, woo hoo!, worried
Amidst one of the craziest couple weeks on record at any job I’ve ever held, I do have a wonderfully bright spot ahead. I get two days off for vacation this week, both Thursday and Friday.
But that’s not the bright spot.
I’m taking those two days off because my wonderful, adorable, amazing eldest goddaughter is making her first solo voyage on an airplane to come see her Nina Karen.
Now that’s a bright spot!!!
This is big doings for both teen and adult. Her Uncle Good Man and I are so excited to have her in our home and to show her around the Bay Area. There are lots of things to do here and we’re planning big fun.
I did have pause last night as The Good Man and I had a little supper. We were discussing plans for the visit and I reminded him that we have to be the grownups.
“Why?” was his response, so beautifully typical of my spouse.
And I laughed and replied, “Because we are responsible for her!”
He shook his head and said “aw, we’ll be all right.” And I’m quite sure we will.
But for as excited as I am to see my girl, I’m also feeling the responsibility for being her Nina, for being a good Nina and for making sure she has an awesome time.
Uncle Good Man says, “She can have cheeseburgers at every meal if she wants!”
Clearly we’re gonna have different approach to this. Then again I’m the one that yells at the cat for drinking out of the toilet and he says “she’s just thirsty!”
May I be a good co-madre to my precious girl. The kind that makes room for both cheeseburgers and safety.
Filed under: animals, awesome!, awkward, cranky, Florida, kerfuffle, life, make it work, Opinions, play through, truth is stranger than..., why
So I was rolling home last evening after a really long day of cranky behavior and I was a bit brain dead and just ready to be at my own little home.
I put on the radio to the local news chat station and turned off my brain for the ride.
Somewhere along the way as I was bumpitty bumping along a torn up stretch of road, my brain locked on to a couple words uttered by the news caster.
The words were: loose kangaroo
“Oh,” thought my tired brain, “They are probably talking about something that happened in Australia.”
Nope. They were talking about something that happened in Florida.
Doesn’t the weird stuff always happen in Florida? It seems like any of the weirdest of the weird news I read either went down in Thailand or Florida. The humidity must make things odd.
Reader’s Digest version: A loose kangaroo held up traffic on US 301 and the authorities were called. Police and fire chased the animal around for a while and then a former wrestler named Kevin Wehling showed up. He tracked it to a ditch and then grappled with the beast.
Side note: I understand kangaroos are sort of mean. If they get a back claw into you they can open you up pretty good.
But Wehling prevailed and finally subdued the beast. It was then taken to a local kangaroo ranch for safekeeping. Evidently it was not their ‘roo. Evidently it’s normal to have a kangaroo ranch? Evidently it’s normal for many people to own a ‘roo? Evidently a loose kangaroo is to be expected?
Just another normal day in the Sunshine State.
Image found here.
Filed under: angry, anxiety, awkward, Boss Lady, business is business, cranky, disapproving boss, don't bully me!, don't want!, first world problems, grumptacular, guilt, humility, kerfuffle, learning, life, make it work, manners, mean people, open a can o' whup-ass, Opinions, ouch, play through, sigh, stubborn, work, yes boss
…and put on my cranky pants. The extra heavy-duty pants of crank.
Whoooo doggies am I cranky. And what’s worse, I know I’m cranky and can’t seem to step out of it.
I just blasted a coworker who sent a really inane request over to my team. To be fair, it is a REALLY inane request and something needed to be said. However, saying “this request needs additional definition and will be challenging to deliver in the time frame requested” is different from turning on both fire hoses to full blast.
Yeah. I did that. The full blast thing.
I apologized. Yes, I did. I said “I don’t believe this is an appropriate request but I was wrong to blast you for that.”
Being humble makes me feel bad about myself and my actions. It was the right thing to do, but also makes me a bit more cranky. Over the course of my now twenty year career I have been blasted right and left, and usually without remorse.
Leadership up to the CEOs of large companies have had some harsh words that landed on me. This includes one senior level executive who said to me and a peer as we presented a project we had worked on that needed approval: “You two are f—ed, your analysis is f—ed, now get the f— out of my office!”
Not one of my best days at work.
One might say, well, if you have been blasted by successful leaders who did so without remorse, then why do you feel bad about it?
Because I hated being blasted. I hated being treated like something lower than a piece of crud. I thought it was wrong every time it was done to me. It was inappropriate, and it was demoralizing, so why would I perpetuate this behavior?
Some might say that apologizing is a sign of weakness. Maybe. Or maybe it’s a sign of strength to not act like a temper tantrum throwing toddler, or at least owning it and apologizing when one does. Who knows?
But, some might say, some of the great leaders of our modern times including Steve Jobs and Larry Ellison (among many others) are known for their profound temper tantrums. Sure. You don’t hear the stories of the great leaders who acted with grace. That doesn’t sell newspapers.
At this point I should admit that I don’t know the right answer. I only have to live with myself today, tomorrow, years ahead. I have to lie down at night and decide if the way I treated people was the way I wanted to be treated. I have to own who I am and how I act.
I can’t reconcile venting my cranky pants on someone and not owning that and apologizing. There is a difference in being firm and a bit demanding and being a jerk.
May I always work hard so I know where that line lands.
Image found here.
Filed under: anxiety, art, artist, awesome!, awkward, business is business, crazy, daydreaming, disapproving boss, doooooom!, first world problems, Friday, fun, fun toys, grumptacular, iPhone, iPhoneography, kerfuffle, latent childhood, life, make it work, mobile phones, monkey mind, office supplies, Opinions, overwhelmed, play through, pondering, psychosis, show and tell, skeerdy cat, The More You Know..., truth is stranger than..., woo hoo!, yes boss
Here I am, day three of my three day training. On a Friday, no less. Today is the final uphill slog for this training class.
It is a long climb and this hiker is weary.
Not sure whether I can continue on. Sooooo booored.
Today, instead of being “that guy” I have gone into slump mode. I already got called out for looking at my phone. I’ve eaten every pastry they offer (all terrible!) and I’m drinking caffeinated tea. Nothing is helping.
So now, instead of paying attention, I’m obsessing on a white board marker.
This marker, particularly.
This is a very respectable marker. It’s green, made from 90% post-consumer product, almost fully recyclable and refillable. This is a very smart and responsible pen, a good business choice by whomever purchased it.
So why am I obsessing? Well, one, it’s orange which is my current favorite color (it changes all of the time). And two because of this…(Look at the yellow tag)
That little pen reservoir holds the orange ink. You can watch it sloshing around in there. Neat!
And that tag, it tells me not to open up that sloshy ink container. Why!?! Because it is a brand new pen and opening it now will splash ink everywhere. So!?
I wanna! I wanna I wanna I wanna!
I am having to exercise the utmost in restraint, something I don’t have a lot of, to keep from ripping the end off that marker. Then I tell myself, “I’m steady handed enough, I can pull that off of there and have no problem! Without spilling a drop! Let me prove it to myself!”
But I know the truth. I’m not sure handed. I’m the girl that falls down. I will pop that cap off and ink will spring up in the air and aerosolize and there will orange ink from here to there, ceiling to floor.
That sure would be awesome, though.
Way more fun than talking about warranty claims, insurance provisions and cost accounting.
Images Copyright 2013, Karen Fayeth, not that you’d want to steal photos of an orange marker, and subject to the Creative Commons license in the right column of this page. Taken with an iPhone 5, the Camera+ app and no small amount of lack of attention to the subject at hand.
Filed under: addictions, anxiety, awesome!, awkward, bored, business is business, cackle, crazy, disapproving boss, doooooom!, evil glee, fun, grumptacular, hell, irritated, latent childhood, lazy, life, make it work, monkey mind, Opinions, overwhelmed, play through, psychosis, remorse, sigh, silly, truth is stranger than..., woo hoo!, work, yes boss
The rest of this week is going to be a drag. Any joy I feel at having a short week after a long weekend is dried up by the fact that I am required (not suggested, not a choice, required) to attend three full days of training here at the ol’ place of work.
Three. Full. Days.
Somewhere around that time in history when the first smartphone came out, I developed a pretty severe case of adult ADD. I cannot sit still like a good kid for more than an hour at a time. In order to get me to do that, the topic better be damn interesting.
Sneak preview: The topic of this training is not. At all.
The guy giving the training is doing a good job. He is trying his hardest to make this interesting. Cracking a joke here and there. But even he knows this is a drudge and we all just gotta get through it.
And so the first couple hours were fine. It was all new and somewhat interesting. The next couple hours were hell. Part of the “rules of the road” for the class are no open laptops and no looking at phones.
So I’m bored. I doodle in the margins of my notepad. I let my mind wander to far off topics (at one point I was wondering if I should cut my nails or keep them a bit longer since they are so strong right now).
And then I run out of things to wander off about and supposedly I’m supposed to be paying attention and learning something and getting something out of this class that my department paid big money to force me to attend.
So then boredom gives way to something else. Something sinister. I become “that guy” in the training class. You know that guy. Or girl. Whatever. You know, the person who participates. Who answers questions. Who offers suggestions. Who always has something to say. That person who everyone is sick and tired of by the end of day one with two more days of class ahead.
I hate that guy! Except when I’m being that guy and then it’s a crap load of fun!
It’s a…you know…big mouth bass. *snork*
Image found here.
Filed under: amazing, awesome!, awkward, boat drinks, borracho, candy, cha-cha-changes, cranky, disappointed, drama, first world problems, fruit, good eats, gratitude, history, home, homesick, latent childhood, life, Love, make it work, melancholy, memories, mi corazon, Mom, New Mexico, nostalgia, Opinions, parenting, peculiar, play through, pondering, sangria, Santa Fe, sigh, sunshine, wine
There is no such thing as ‘traditional’ or ‘authentic’ sangria. Sangria is a party drink designed to get your guests drunk really cheaply.
– Damian Corrigan, About.com Guide
Well, what Damian lacks in tact he makes up for by being right. Isn’t truth the best defense? Yes, I think so.
I found this quote when I Googled “how to make traditional sangria” because all of the sudden I have noticed that sangria has become cool. Except, the sangria they are serving in bars and restaurants these days cost $15 a glass and doesn’t taste right. It has become something hipster and these children are tinkering around.
What happened? No one knows how to make sangria right anymore!
In the folds and recesses of my mind, I remember someone’s mom or abuela telling me “Oh, Sangria is easy, just buy the cheapest sweet red wine you can find, pour it in a pitcher then cut up a bunch of fruit and drop it in there and let it sit for a couple days.”
That’s it. That’s how I recall it being told and that’s how I recall sangria should be made. Sweet, fruity, and inexpensive. It takes a few days to make it right. Land of Mañana. A little slow and easy on a hot summer day.
These days bars make “sangria” on the spot, mixing some red wine, some other hard liquor (brandy, vodka, rum or in the case of a restaurant in San Francisco, I swear it’s everclear) and tossing in a couple orange slices.
It doesn’t taste right. It wasn’t given time to do what good sangria should do.
I remember as a child, my mom confiding in me that the best sangria she’d ever had was at La Tertulia** in Santa Fe. I remember dining with the folks and all the adults at the table seemed to love the stuff, like kids and Kool-Ade.
Later as an adult I got to give a pitcher of La Tertulia’s nectar a sip for myself, and by god mom was absolutely right. Ab-so-loot-lee. Mom knows her sangria.
So all this sangria angst was dusted up because over the weekend while at my local Trader Joe’s, I picked up a bottle of Maria Ole Sangria that had been touted so highly in the sales circular.
I put that bad boy in the ‘fridge to get nice and cold and last night on a really mellow evening, I cracked it open and poured some out.
It was pretty terrible. Really terrible. I finished the glass and decided to give it a chance. Sometimes crappy wine needs a second glass. That’s my theory anyway. Second glass didn’t do much to improve this swill.
And the worst of it? Today I am slightly hungover. Not in a big way but in that “shoot, I drank some crappy wine last night” and now I’m mad. Good old fashioned aged sangria is usually mellowed out enough that it doesn’t hurt the head.
This new era of not really sangria not only hurts my head, it hurts my heart.
**Sadly, La Tertulia is no more. I shall always remember their indian tacos and their sopaipillas and yes, their delicious sangria. *sigh* Pour one out for a NM institution….. Image found here.
Image found here.
Filed under: addictions, adorable, amazing, artist, awesome!, awkward, Bay Area, beautiful, bloody Brits, business is business, California, cursing, da blues, don't want!, doubts, ew, first world problems, fun, hey kids get off my lawn, kids these days, Las Cruces, latent childhood, learning, life, make it work, Music, New Mexico, Opinions, play through, pondering, posers, show and tell, wayback machine, where I come from, work, yucky
Don’t look at me! Don’t! I’m so ashamed.
: deep breath :
Ok, here’s the thing. I didn’t MEAN to purchase tweenie teeny bopper music. I really didn’t. I swear it!
It all started out innocently enough. I was in my car. It was a bright sunny day. I had the windows rolled down and I was feeling all of my wild oats.
I was at work and driving across town midday to the other building and going to see one of my favorite coworkers and life seemed pretty darn good.
The car radio was tuned to the local popular station and I caught this sort of fun little summertime kind of song with a break in the middle for some Flo Rida.
Now, I love me some Flo Rida. Not ashamed about that.
The song was something about some boy singing about the girl being a “troublemaker” and I thought the Flo Rida break gave it some gravitas.
I found my rear quarters grooving to the beat and a hand tapping the ol’ steering wheel. I smiled a little about all the times some cute boy in my life has called me a troublemaker. The spring-into-summer sun and nice memories worked for me.
Later that day I went home and went to YouTube and watched the super cutie cute Brit boy doing his little thang lip synching to the song. I watched another of his videos and was charmed then went straight to iTunes and bought his whole album.
I fired the thing up and started listening to all fourteen tracks.
Oy vey. That’s when I realized my mistake.
The two songs I’d heard are the best of the album. All the rest are overproduced crap. Bouncy tasteless boy band crappitty crap.
And I bought the whoooole album. Damn.
When I realized I’d simply bought the one boy version of One Direction I was quite embarrassed. Very embarrassed. Shocked, sad, grief, and then I laughed. A lot.
Then I turned on Stevie Ray Vaughan to cleanse my ear canals. That helped me get right.
As my blues friend used to say at the end of the night, “Did you get healed?”
Thanks to a beat up old Fender and the talents of a good Texas boy, I sure did.
Too bad about the electronic copy of the bad stuff. I can’t fling electronic bits out the car window while doing 85 mph on I-25 north out of Las Cruces. You know the place, right near the first rest stop? It’s where I once flung a good portion of an ex-boyfriend’s cassette tape based music collection, just out of spite.
It’s a real fine resting place. I would fly to my fair New Mexico just to get it done.
Ah well. Technology. Whatareyagonnado?
Image found here.
Filed under: addictions, amazing, angry, awesome!, awkward, breakfast, cackle, California, good eats, green chile, growing up, grumptacular, Hatch, homesick, in the kitchen, kids these days, Las Cruces, life, Love, make it work, New Mexico, Opinions, play through, pondering, posers, silly, The Good Man, where I come from, yucky, zia
And so as I was perusing my Facebook timeline this morning, idly reading posts while breakfast was consumed, I came across a post from Chile Monster, a good group of folks that I follow.
Contained in their post was a link to an article about a woman who had moved to New Mexico and her first experience dining at Albuquerque restaurant Little Anita’s. She details how over time she learned to love green chile, and now living in Colorado, she found another location of Little Anita’s where she could get her fix.
In the comment section of that article was the following quote:
I have the greatest disdain for it. Green “chili” is disgusting gruel. Chile verde is supposed to be made from tomatillos.
– Diego Raya
When I read that, I actually jumped a little as though I’d been touched by a live electrical current.
Then I said aloud to my phone in the quiet dark of my living room, “Whaaat the f*****k?”
It was at this point that I laughed. This had to be a joke. The Good Man wearies of me raging against tomatillos. In California, green salsa and green enchilada sauce are made solely with tomatillos and thus I avoid them at all costs. Occasionally there are some jalapenos thrown in. All heat and no flavor.
That is, as the internets would say, weak sauce.
Why anyone would prefer tomatillos over green chile is a mystery to me. There is actually room in the world for them both. I believe true chile verde has both, but I won’t quibble with the adamant commenter.
In the aftermath of reading the quote, I went through many of the stages of grief. I was disbelieving. I was angry. I was sad. Then I accepted that one Mr. Diego Raya is entitled to his opinion. And also his utter lack of taste buds.
Then I realized, let Mr. Raya have his silly green tomatoes. Piles and piles of ‘em. Let him have the entire watery crop.
Eat, Mr. Raya, eat! Enjoy every last one.
Just leaves that much more green chile for me and my people.
Move along Mr. Raya. Nothing to see here.
O Fair New Mexico, we love, we love you so…
Image Copyright 2008, Karen Fayeth.
Filed under: addictions, air, awesome!, awkward, bathtub, beautiful, curious, daydreaming, dreams, family, gratitude, latent childhood, learning, life, love and marriage, make it work, Mom, monkey mind, Opinions, optimism, our happy home, overwhelmed, parenting, play through, pondering, The Good Man, truth is stranger than..., water, zen
In a full to overflowing bathtub, I relax, soaking the ache out of legs and content to be surrounded by water. It’s not long before I slide down, legs crawling up the wall under the shower, head dipping below the surface. My right hand plugs my nose and my left hand covers my eyes like a sleep mask and water fills my ears.
I savor these few moments I have to just float in nothing.
The water amplifies noise but bends the sound waves into something more beautiful. Even the passing fire truck with its shrill siren and blaring horns sounds almost musical when passed through my warm, clear water. The rhythmic hum of the clothes dryer puts me in a trance and I enjoy this until my lungs ask politely and then not so politely if we can surface and take in some new, unused air.
I reluctantly rise up and gasp in a big breath and go under again. It’s just too delicious and quite addictive. This time I think about buying a snorkel so I can stay under the water and still breathe. I’ve considered buying a snorkel so I can stay under my bathwater ever since I was a kid.
Even as a child I was drawn to the solace and quiet of being under water. One early evening as I was taking a bath and creating my own sensory isolation chamber, my mother walked in to check on me. As any protective mother of three children would do when presented with the sight of her youngest lying apparently lifeless in a bathtub full of water, she freaked out.
My mother yanked me from the water and shook me hard, shouting my name. I unplugged my nose and uncovered my eyes and said, “What?”
I got a well-deserved and thorough chewing out and was told in no uncertain terms that I was never to simply slide under the water and remain motionless. Ever.
When I later emerged from my bath and got dressed and ran a comb through my unruly long hair, I was confronted by my father who ripped into me for scaring my mother.
I always thought that was quite unfair. I didn’t set out to intentionally scare my mother. I simply wanted a moment, if even half a minute, where I didn’t exist in the world. Where everything was blocked out and time slowed down and sounds bent in pleasing ways.
My solution thereafter was to continue to dunk my head well below water and plug my nose with my right hand. With my left hand, I would raise it above the surface and wave it like the Queen on parade so that any passerby would know I was still conscious, just submerged.
This seemed a suitable solution for all. A nice compromise.
I’ve always wanted to visit one of those sensory isolation tanks. It sounds like a little slice of heaven to me. Floating in a tank with no light and hardly any sound and just the quiet to embrace me. Yes, I think I would love this very much.
The Good Man thinks I’m half a bubble off level to consider this. “I always figure while you are locked in there, the people outside will steal your stuff or do something weird,” he says.
This is how his mind works. This is not how my mind works.
A few years ago we visited a spa in Calistoga, California. The spas in Calistoga are known for their mud baths. You give them money and they allow you to slide your nekkid body into a warm tub of slightly sulphurous goo. The weight of the mud resists your body, you actually have to dig in there. Once settled, you are surrounded and suspended and oh my goodness I could have stayed in there for weeks.
The Good Man did not feel as kindly toward the mud. He said he was antsy the whole time he was in there and ready to vault from the tub. He couldn’t wait for it to be over. I never wanted it to stop.
Perhaps it’s something Freudian that I like to slip into warm suspended places and forget about things for a while. I choose to think it rather normal to want to seek out genuine moments of respite where the world and all its crazy spinning and shouting and clanking and cruelty goes away, for just a moment. For as long as it takes me to hold my breath.
Until I buy a snorkel.
Image found here.
Filed under: anxiety, awkward, body issues, business is business, cackle, charming, crazy, crying, cursing, disappointed, doubts, drama, gallows humor, game face, gravity, kerfuffle, latent childhood, learning, life, make it work, mean people, melancholy, Opinions, overwhelmed, peculiar, play through, show and tell, sigh, silly, stress, stubborn, The Good Man, truth is stranger than..., what price beauty, why, work, worried, yucky
Oh me oh my oh. Sometimes I really have to step back and just wonder what in the hell is wrong with me.
I try to be a normal person, I really do. I try to keep the weird under wraps and show a normal, professional, got-it-together face to the world.
But I ain’t got nothing together. It’s all just a shuck and a jive.
On Friday, I managed to embarrass myself pretty good.
See, I’ve been feeling a little bit on edge about the new job. I really, really like the job and my manager and the people I work with and perhaps I’ve become almost too emotionally attached to this place.
It’s an awesome gig! With how crazy busy things have been recently, I have made a few mistakes. One medium sized, one a great big whopper. Wheew. I do hate making mistakes on a grand scale.
I’m used to making mistakes. I always say, “It’s not whether or not you make a mistake, it’s how you get back out of the mistake that matters.” And it’s true.
Trouble is, I not only made these mistakes, but being so new I don’t even know how to back out gracefully. So I’ve been flailing at it.
Flailing. Never a good look.
I suppose I am actually grateful that I got sick recently because it took me out of the game for several days. That flu laid me down not-so-gently and gave me respite. And perspective.
Coming back to work I felt humbled and ready to step back in and be more calm and methodical about how I approach my work.
Then there was Friday. For reasons I can’t fully explain, I was totally out of sorts on Friday. Quaveringly low self-esteem, a bit of anxiety, and just all around trying and failing to keep it together.
At lunch I decided to head outside. My sister and I had been chatting about this fabulous under eye serum she found and I was off to Sephora to procure some of my very own. I thought it would be a nice bounce to my self esteem.
I got up from my desk and felt pretty ok. Threw my shoulders back and was doing my best “fake it until you make it” strut.
I went out the front door of the building and saw four coworkers (one of them an employee on my team), I smiled and said, “hey, that looks like trouble” and threw my head back and laughed just about the time the toe of my sandal caught the uneven concrete.
Then I went ass over teakettle. Right there. In front of a crowded foyer, lots of people outside, and four of my coworkers.
Oh, and everyone gasped and many people came running over. “Are you all right? Are you ok? Here I’ll help you up” was like a loud chorus swarming around my head.
Now, here’s the thing: I fall down all the time. My whole life. It’s just something I do.
Usually falling down happens in one of two scenarios. 1) I am feeling pretty overwhelmed and “out of it” or 2) I am feeling overconfident.
Well, Friday’s tumble definitely falls into category one. Overwhelmed. I tend to lose track of my feet and the results were incredibly humiliating.
Since I fall down so much, when I roll to a stop and quickly assess my limbs, and I realize I’m fine (and since I’m so well practiced at this I’m almost always fine) I start to laugh. C’mon! Falling down is funny!
But I think my sitting there on the ground cackling at myself makes people really nervous. I guess I’m supposed to be upset and crying when I fall. Hell, I’m not giving anyone that satisfaction! I’m going to laugh because falling is totally funny! Even my own tumbles are pretty dang hilarious.
Anyhow, I waved off all the hands reaching out to pull me up and repeated like a mantra, “I’m fine, I’m fine, no I’m not hurt, I’m fine.”
I got to my feet and walked away, intent on going to my car and still having my fun lunchtime shopping break, despite the dirt and gravel stuck to my backside.
Then I walked past a picnic table out by the parking garage, near to where all the fuss had happened.
Two young women sat at the table. As I walked by, one said to the other, “It’s because she’s so fat.”
Ouch. That’s not funny. That’s not ooops I fell down but I’m fine rocking good time Karen. That’s just mean.
So I walked away from them and went around the corner and I called The Good Man, because he felt like the only person in the world who might actually be on my side.
And of course, he was. So I promptly started crying. Sobbing, actually.
Thankfully he was nearby to where I work and he came over quickly whisked me away. We had lunch and he said soothing things and he took me to Sephora and I got my eye cream anyway.
Then I went back to work and I was (mostly) fine.
Because when the world is mean and gravity isn’t your friend, it’s nice to know that no matter what all those people think, The Good Man still likes me and believes I’m an all right person.
I worked for a few hours quietly in my office then I left work a little early and enjoyed my Friday late afternoon.
Today, Monday, I still feel a little sheepish. I am a manager, fer chrissakes and falling and flailing don’t inspire confidence from the troops.
Somehow I have to get my mojo back. Not sure how, just need to. And fast.
Maybe I should post an ad: LOST! One mojo. Last seen about a month ago. Really funky and fun. If found, please return to owner. Excellent karmic rewards upon return.
Image found here.
Filed under: addictions, awkward, being sick, borracho, Boss Lady, cranky, crazy, disappointed, disapproving boss, don't want!, doooooom!, drama, food, fresh ideas!, gratitude, irritated, kerfuffle, lactose intolerance, laffs, life, make it work, Opinions, play through, pondering, show and tell, The Good Man, wine, work, yes boss, yucky
As mentioned yesterday, last week at work included a roomful of auditors which meant that we not only had to be on our best behavior (for a whole week!!), but we also had to entertain these auditors for the duration of their stay.
When my Boss Lady informed her very own team of minions that we were each expected to attend a dinner with the full audit team, I replied, “But I don’t wanna eat dinner with auditors!”
Not to one to be easily swayed, she replied, “Well you’re gonna!”
And so I did.
Wednesday night last week we went to a local, popular and well Yelp-ranked dining establishment. It is an old warehouse converted to an eatin’ place, as is so hipster cool these days.
I found myself seated right next to one of the auditors, a pretty decent guy from Chicago. Conversation was formal and challenging at first. We were both very guarded.
The fare at the restaurant was simple and good. Not great, but got the job done. Thankfully they had a nice wine selection which helped lubricate the conversation over dinner with a bunch of stilted business folks.
At the end of the meal, and full of enough wine to matter, we were all chatting like old friends. As plates were cleared, dessert menus were plopped on the table in front of us. Since it was a busy night in the warehouse food place, the waiter asked us to share dessert menus because they were running low.
Chicago and I leaned in to look over the selection of sweet treats to end the meal.
Since I’ve had to concede that I actually *do* have lactose intolerance (despite all my best attempts to ignore it and pretend otherwise), looking over the dessert list has become a bit more difficult than has been in the past.
I have to be more thoughtful about my choices.
“So, what are you thinking about having?” Chicago asked.
“Well,” I said, “I’m not sure. Maybe that berry crumble?” He looked at the listing then sat back in his seat and sighed.
“Berries not working for you tonight?” I asked.
“It’s just that…” he faltered. “You see, it’s served with ice cream. And I was recently diagnosed with lactose intolerance.”
“You too!?!” I asked, way too over-excited to find someone else with my gastro intestinal dairy related woes.
We lamented together. He told me that he really misses milk, especially a big glass of cold moo juice with a stack of chocolate chip cookies. I lamented the loss of a late night cereal snack. I told him I’m using almond milk these days and he shook his head, “Yeah, that’s ok. Not like the real stuff though.”
“Yeah,” I couldn’t help but agree. “And I miss ice cream. Oh, wait!” I said, then dug around in my purse and withdrew four Lactaid packets. Enough for us both.
So we both got sort of happy and turned back to the menu and looked again. “Maybe that ice cream…” he said.
It was my turn to sit back with a thud. “As I am sure you have also discovered, Lactaid is an imperfect solution. I don’t know about you, but it helps a little, but not that much.”
“Yeah,” he agreed. And then we both looked sad.
Then Chicago reached out and turned over the menu to the coffee and aperitifs section. “You know,” he said, “We could solve this problem by skipping dessert and having a glass of port.”
My eyes widened and I said, “You. Are. Brilliant.”
And so we did. Two glasses of ten year tawny port were ordered and consumed and I felt nary a tummy rumble after.
Later, without even knowing it, The Good Man was also pleased with my choice.
Because lactose intolerance doesn’t just trouble the afflicted. No, it impacts loved ones too.
I guess I’m learning to live with this terrible, awful affliction.
Good thing I still tolerate wine okay. *grin*
Image found here.
Filed under: anxiety, audit, awkward, being sick, Boss Lady, business is business, coughing, cranky, disappointed, disapproving boss, don't want!, drama, fail, grief, I ain't as good as I once was, insomnia, kerfuffle, learning, life, luck, make it work, mean people, meeting hell, odd, office supplies, on the couch, Opinions, overwhelmed, plague, play through, PowerPoint hell, scared, sleep deprived, tears, work, worried, yes boss, yucky
Whew, and wow, and holy cow and other explicatives.
So here I am, back here at the ol’ blog and oh-so-happy to be back.
This past week was the first time I’ve ever taken a break from My Fair New Mexico in the six years I’ve been at this game. It was really hard for me to step away. Really, really difficult.
Writing somewhere around a thousand words a day about whatever is on my mind is what keeps me sane. Well…as sane as I can be. Which isn’t much.
Here’s the low down on the time away:
As ya’ll know, I’ve started a brand new job, in fact I’ve been here just shy of four months. Still a total newbie and trying to make a good impression.
From the day I started this gig, I was told that there was this really Big Deal coming up at the end of April. The big deal is an audit.
A big whopping audit that looks at our department top to bottom. The review includes our systems, our files, the cleanliness of our socks. All of it.
At the end, the head office decides if we get to keep doing what we are doing, or if we are so out of alignment that every project we do requires executive oversight and approval. (there have been entities that have failed the audit in recent history)
Yeah. This is a huge deal. Basically if we failed the audit, our department would face massive cuts, and being the new person on board, well…make your own conclusions.
Only a tiny amount of GIGANTIC stress.
On top of that, my own sub-team had a massive project due on Tuesday of the same week and one of my (senior level) employees was just not getting her job done. Worse, she seemed not to care one whit that we were going to miss the project drop-dead deadline.
Missing the deadline would mean incurring the wrath of the Chief Information Officer of the company, a formidable person. At four months of employment I am still on probation, so incurring the CIO’s wrath now wouldn’t be a good look for my future here.
And so I was worried. Really worried. Walk the floor at two in the ay em kind of worried. I was getting little to no sleep, working very long days, and filled with massive amounts of stress and worry. This of course, just a short week after The Good Man and I had finished moving to a new town. So no stress there either. *harumph*
To make the long story short, we passed the audit. Yay! And after some yelling and application of heavy doses of guilt my employee finished the project (just barely), so we dodged that bit of unpleasantness from the CIO. I did get a good butt chewing from my boss for letting it get to the very last minute.
So by the end of that week of hell, more precisely by Friday about 10:30am, I was sick with hundred degree fever and sinus pressure so bad I thought my head was going to pop like a kernel of corn in a frying pan.
Brutal. Just simply brutal.
From Friday until yesterday I haven’t even been on the planet. Between fever and Theraflu I think I went on some sort of vision quest. I may have seen my spirit animal, I’m not sure. And the Theraflu dreams. My god the angels and gargoyles that haunt my fevered mind.
Today I am mostly back. Running at about 80% perhaps which is a damn sight better than where I was last week, but still not good.
And so, my dear and loyal readers, that is where I was when I urgently posted on April 30th that I wouldn’t be writing on the blog for a while.
It made me sad to have to post that and walk away.
Let’s not be apart like that again, ok?
Image found here.
Filed under: anxiety, awkward, cranky, crazy, cursing, doooooom!, doubts, drama, first world problems, kerfuffle, lazy, life, love and marriage, make it work, monkey mind, Opinions, play through, pondering, psychosis, sigh, sleep deprived, the feline, The Good Man, why, worried, yucky
Sleep. What a beautiful thing it is. When it happens.
During my early life, sleep was never an issue for me. I would lay down, think up a story or something in my head, and soon I’d drift into good sleep. Then I’d sleep many good solid hours and I’d wake up feeling fine.
In my twenties when I dated a blues musician and I used to attend his gigs which often ended at 2am. I’d go home and get up and be at work by 8am. I’d work a full day, then come home, go to bed by 7pm, sleep something like twelve hours and be fine. How audacious.
That’s how easy sleep has always been for me until the last five years or so. Now sleep is an elusive thing. A will-o’-the-wisp that seems to dance at the periphery, just out of grasp.
I still go to sleep with relative ease, but staying asleep, that’s a whole other matter.
I have consulted with professionals on this matter. The answer? “Well, you know, it’s common for women of a certain age to have this problem.”
Bah! I know plenty of women my age who sleep just fine through the night. I also know quite a few women who struggle like me. Men too.
So last night, as I lay there in my familiar bed in my still unfamiliar home, not sleeping at 3am, I started feeling like I am going crazy. Seriously. The thoughts went like this:
“I am going insane. I mean…truly insane. I am not sure I can keep a grasp on the little bit of sanity I have left. Wait, is someone who is going insane aware of that they are going bugnutty? Or does the slide into crazyville go unnoticed? How does one go insane? Probably like that old saying, slowly and then quickly. If I slip my nut does that mean I have to go into an institution? How will The Good Man deal with that? He would not be happy to have me in a hospital, pent up and pulling at the tethers holding me down while shouting strange things.”
Of course, all of that kind of obsessive thinking does NOTHING to help sleep show up again.
So I got up for a while and The Feline joined me. She had a snack, I looked at email on my phone (with the brightness at the lowest possible setting).
After a while we trooped to the bathroom together and then went back to bed. The Feline was snoring within minutes. Sleep was a little more elusive for me.
I woke up with my alarm and reassessed my situation. Am I going insane? I asked The Good Man. He reminded me that lack of sleep sure feels like a short ride into crazyville.
Today, just past lunch time, sitting at my desk, I feel fine. Reasonably sane and a fairly normal working drone. I am tired but I don’t feel like my sanity is at stake.
All is well.
Until 3am rolls around again and I’m tearing at the sheets desperately trying to find sleep.
Filed under: amazing, automobiles, awesome!, awkward, Bay Area, Bay Bridge, commuting, drama, gratitude, home, life, make it work, moving, Opinions, our happy home, overwhelmed, play through, w00t, walking, woo hoo!, work, yes boss
*wiggle little toe* aiiyyeeeeeee!
Ah yes, folks, the unmistakable sounds of a post-move body.
Everything hurts. My arms and legs are bruised all to heck and my knee is making a crunching sound it didn’t used to make.
In my younger days, I would bounce back from this sort of event within a day or two and go on about my day. Today I have to remind myself to get up from my desk at least once an hour or I will surely become locked up like the Tinman.
When the alarm clock went off this morning I muttered “should have taken today off” but alas, I didn’t.
For a work day, I have to say this morning was pretty nice. Instead of my usual 45 minutes to an hour commute across busy roads and over a bridge, today my commute was just 13 minutes (I timed it) on surface streets.
That right there makes a few days (weeks?) of sore muscles all worth it.
So far we are loving our new pad. A lot. On Sunday we took a short walk in the neighborhood and managed to meet the neighborhood kook. She’s a friendly kook, but a kook nonetheless.
I happen to think knowing the local kook is an important part of settling in to any neighborhood.
So for now we are still living out of boxes, but we’ve even put a pretty good dent in that work. All in, I’d have to say the whole move went really well.
It was, dare I say…a smooth move? (*snicker, snort, guffaw*)
Onward to this sunny Spring Monday. May you all have a song in your heart and a bounce in your step.
Image found here.