Thursday, September 30, 2004
( 9:07 AM ) teahouse
The Second Flood of '04
The last two days have been really crappy. I've been run ragged, working until all odd hours of the night.
On top of that, last night when I got home from work, I discovered that the heavy rains of the past week caused a leakage in my bedroom ceiling. Right over my bed. My mattress was soaking wet when I got home.
The way my bedroom is configured, I couldn't move my bed. And the hole in the ceiling was right over where my head would be. So I had to sleep with my head down at the foot, and my feet sticking off the side.
Needless to say, I didn't get a good night's sleep. Which means it will be interesting, the telephone conference I have with the client today. When I don't get sleep, I turn into a CRANKY bitch.
Maybe I'll just yell at the client. Open up a can of whoop ass. Yeah, that might get some stuff done.
Tuesday, September 28, 2004
( 9:08 AM ) teahouse
Fashion Faux Pas!
Yesterday I wore my favorite white blouse to work. It's thin, white, perfectly tailored, and flatters my figure.
I got into the office early, had a meeting with a partner, had a meeting with a client, interviewed a candidate, went out to lunch, and all in all had a productive day. Many people saw my sophisticated self in this shirt.
At 6 p.m. I went to the ladies' room, looked in the mirror and realized that in my half-awake state in the darkness of my room yesterday morning, I'd put on a dark purple bra.
So there it was, the complete outline of my dark purple bra, fully visible through the sheerness of my white shirt.
It looked horrible.
I can never show my face at my firm again. I have to switch jobs now.
Monday, September 27, 2004
( 8:32 AM ) teahouse
Crazy Workaholic Senior Associate
I was stuck on a project with Crazy Workaholic Senior Associate all last week.
He's the guy who's a 9th-year associate about 6 months from partnership, so he's pushing himself hard in his single-mindedness to make it.
He's already cleaned out his small associate office, in anticipation of receiving partnership and getting moved to a fancy new partner office.
He doesn't spend time with his wife and kids because it's not billable. He makes his secretary send them birthday cards so it won't take away from his billable hours. He justifies it by saying that he's working hard to provide for them and keep them in private school.
When you try to leave work at 7:00 one night to have dinner with your family who's in town visiting, he lectures you on the importance of being there for the client. "It's what they pay us for, to be available when they need us."
When he's unhappy with you, he starts off sentences like, "Well, I'm not a partner yet, so maybe you don't take my assignments seriously, but..." Implying that when he is a partner, and you dare to put his assigment on the back burner, he will squash you like a little bug.
The other night I was determined to make it to my orchestra rehearsal. So I sneaked out the back way to avoid the Crazy Workaholic Senior Associate.
At the elevator bank, I stopped dead in my tracks. He was waiting for the elevator. Fortunately, he was facing the other way.
I ducked into the closest hiding spot - the trash and recyclables closet. I counted to 50, then emerged and sprinted toward the now-empty elevators. I made it.
Not as bad as that time last year I had to hide under my desk to avoid someone. But the experience ranks pretty high up there.
Thursday, September 23, 2004
( 8:55 AM ) teahouse
I just received an email that demonstrates a remarkably clever way of getting around the spam filters.
The subject line is:
Nice, huh? I was so impressed with the sender's creativity, I actually read the email.
Wednesday, September 22, 2004
( 9:56 AM ) teahouse
Moms Can Be So Cruel
My mom said to me on the phone the other night, "When I had you, I was disappointed that you were a girl and not a boy."
"Mom!!" I wailed. "You're not supposed to say things like that to your daughter!"
"Well, it's true," she said, placidly. "I wanted a boy, and you weren't a boy, so I was disappointed."
Pause. "But you turned out ok. You were smart and did well in school, and now you have a good job. So I guess you're just as good as a boy. With your sister, I always knew she would be a girl, so I wasn't disappointed. But with you, I had other hopes."
Well, in response to her, I'd have to say that there are many people who are probably pretty glad I was a girl. All of the boys I've ever dated, for example.
Tuesday, September 21, 2004
( 8:51 AM ) teahouse
All this month I've been working for Absent-Minded Partner.
You know who he is. Every firm has one.
He's the one who always loses all of the papers I give him to review. So I have to prepare multiple copies so I can keep giving them to him over and over again.
He's the one who never has a pen handy, because it's stuck behind his ear and he's forgotten where he put it.
He's the one who's really old and never learned how to use a computer, so his secretary has to check his email for him, and pick up his dry cleaning and pay his credit card bill for him.
He's the one who always has a cup of coffee with him when he stops by my office, 3-4 times a week. But after sitting there for half an hour, he gets up to leave and forgets the cup.
So then a week later, I smell something gross, and discover that there are 3-4 old, dried-up and moldy cups of coffee sitting on the top of my bookshelf. Ugh!
Monday, September 20, 2004
( 8:41 AM ) teahouse
This weekend I saw an ad for a new toy: the RC Sushi Lounge. Such a different tune from when I was a kid, and I thought that the exotic Asian food my mom cooked at home was weird and different! How I longed for my mom to cook hamburgers and steaks like other people's moms did.
Now being Asian is suddenly cool? Rock on!
Thursday, September 16, 2004
( 8:33 AM ) teahouse
When I was a kid, we used to a get that "School Supply List" each September. Pens, pencils, notebooks. At the end of the list it would always say, "1 roll of paper towels, 1 box of tissues."
Now I realize why that was. The poor teachers weren't getting any money to buy these supplies.
One of my friends is doing Teach for America in New Orleans. Her main expense is school supplies for her class, and she pays for it out-of-pocket, with no chance of reimbursement. And she makes something like $24,000 a year.
She knows she doesn't have to do it, but if she doesn't, her students are the ones who suffer. Their parents can barely afford to buy notebooks.
What's wrong with this scenario? If we can afford huge tax breaks for big corporations, can't we give teachers a small break too?
I'm neither a conservative nor a liberal; I just don't trust big corporations.
....which is why I post my blog from home, and not from my office where I work as one of their lawyers.
Tuesday, September 14, 2004
( 9:39 AM ) teahouse
Bills Bills Bills
Someone is either messing with me, stealing my mail or something else is going on.
Like I mentioned before, I got that notice last week saying my phone bill was unpaid. I sent the payment, but it still hasn't cleared my checking account.
Then yesterday I checked my American Express bill online, and it says that they never received my payment due September 5, and that my account is past due.
Then I got a nasty letter from SprintPCS saying I owe them about $300 because I haven't paid this month or last month's bills.
WTF? I know I mailed this stuff out. Is someone tampering with the U.S. Postal box outside?
My friends say it's probably a combination of the Republican National Convention, the delay in the Post Office last week due to a radiation leak, and the hurricanes (some of these payments are going to Florida).
It's no fun being a delinquent bill payer.
Monday, September 13, 2004
( 8:49 AM ) teahouse
When you were a kid, what were you afraid of? The boogeyman hiding under your bed? The monsters in your closet? Sharks in your swimming pool?
I was afraid of killer bees. Living along the Gulf Coast, I remember watching news reports that they were in Central America, and heading North and expected to arrive by the early 90s.
Those dreadful made-for-tv horror movies didn't help, either. There'd always be a happy family on a picnic, and the clueless mom would spray bug repellent on a bee, and then the rest of the swarm would find out and get really pissed off. Then the carnage would ensue.
I just read this article. Ahhh..they're following me!! How long before they hit the Big Apple?
The articles all say they can't survive temperatures below a certain level, but maybe they've mutated?
Now THAT would be scary.
Friday, September 10, 2004
( 8:42 AM ) teahouse
Born on the 11th of September
It's going to be an interesting weekend.
Tomorrow is September 11. In the past three years, September 11 has become a significant date for Americans. But it's always been a significant day for me.
You see, September 11 is my birthday. I was here in New York on the day of the attacks. My roommate worked in one of the World Trade Center towers. She was in the building and felt the impact of the first plane hit it. After 6 hours of waiting in agony, I found out that she was alive. But her boss, and the guy in the office next door to hers, didn't make it.
For the last 3 years, I've celebrated my 20-something-th birthday by going out with friends, having a nice dinner, and trying not to turn on the tv all day. And for the past 3 years, I have turned on the tv on my birthday, and ended up crying.
I've gotten lots of sympathy dinners, lunches and beers from friends who feel realllllly sorry for me. "Man, that sucks that your birthday is September 11. Whoa, you sure got unlucky!"
Not true! I'm so lucky! Many people lost loved ones. I was fortunate that none of my friends who worked in those buildings were hurt.
This year, my birthday is on a Saturday. My friends will be joining me for drinks on the East Side tomorrow night. I'm offering everyone a virtual toast right now...if you think of it, drink a Corona for me this weekend.
Thursday, September 09, 2004
( 9:12 AM ) teahouse
All Roads Lead to Manhattan
Yesterday I had to drive up north to Connecticut to visit a client. I couldn't have picked a worse day to do it - there was a ton of rain, and the whole city was in danger of flooding.
Here's a synopsis of my day:
5:00 a.m.: I haul myself out of bed. Want to get an early start so as not to get stuck in the reverse-commuting traffic.
6:30 a.m.: Arrive at rental car place and pick up my car, get on the road.
7:00 a.m.: Am inexplicably stuck on the FDR highway, which goes up the East Side of Manhattan. I've made it up the entrance ramp, but my car isn't moving. I look at the piece of paper with the client's directions: "1. Get on I-95."
8:15 a.m.: Still stuck, and have listened to my entire Coldplay cd. A cop comes up to my car, knocks on the window, and tells me, "There's been an accident. All lanes are closed. You have to back up off the road." He suggests I take a detour up First Avenue. I go into reverse and back up about 200 feet, off the ramp, until I'm back in the City.
9:45 a.m.: An hour and a half later, I'm crossing the Willis Avenue Bridge into the Bronx. It's taken me that long to go a couple of miles.
10:15 a.m.: I'm stuck on the Hutchinson River Parkway. Suddenly, I'm forced off along with everyone else. There's flooding along the next 5 exits. I have to take a detour. And I have to pee soooo badly, since I've already been in the car for over 3 hours.
11:00 a.m.: I'm driving around a residential area in Scarsdale. Have no idea where I am. The barricades prevent me from getting back on the Parkway. Call the client to say that I may be a few hours late.
11:30 a.m.: Find a garage station to pee. Call the partner to say I'm lost. He is unsympathetic. I find the signs to an Interstate. Have no idea where I'm going. I think I'm in downtown White Plains.
12:00 p.m.: Find signs to the Interstate. I realize that finally, after 5 hours, I have made it to step 1 of the client's instructions: I am, in fact, finally on I-95. It's raining so hard I can barely see 10 feet in front of the car. I slow down to about 40 mph and crawl along.
12:30 p.m.: I arrive at the client's office. They're all out to lunch. I buy a bag of chips from the vending machine.
8:30 p.m.: I'm finally done with the work. Everyone else is gone (apparently everyone outside of New York goes home at 5:30). I get back on the road. The radio says many of the roads are still closed. I have no idea how to get home. But I figure all roads lead to Manhattan, right?
9:00 p.m.: It's raining hard, and I'm completely lost. It's pitch black outside, and I can barely see the road. I almost die, like 10 times.
9:45 p.m.: I pull into the parking lot of a Burger King. I ask the teenagers where I am. They say, "You're in Yonkers." Yes, ladies in gentlemen, I was literally Lost in Yonkers! I joke, "Isn't there a play with that name?" The teenagers look at me blankly. I order a chocolate shake.
10:30 p.m.: Why do all of the highways and parkways have names instead of numbers? I don't know where the Major Deegan Expressway goes. Does it go into the City? What about the Cross County Parkway? Who knows? I keep bearing South.
11:00 p.m.: I see a sign that says "Tri-boro Bridge; Manhattan and Queens" so I take it. And I'm home! Woohoo! I return the rental car, go home and collapse in exhaustion.
I'm never driving again!!
Monday, September 06, 2004
( 9:03 PM ) teahouse
Prostrate With Exhaustion
Can I say it's been the worst August ever? With the traveling, the parents, the packing and sending them off, I have been walking around like a zombie for the past couple of days since they left. I took the Labor Day weekend off to recover from the month of August.
I've fallen behind in everything. My sink is overflowing with dishes, my trash can is overflowing with trash.
I guess I forgot to pay my phone bill. I got a notice in the mail saying that my phone service will be cut off TOMORROW unless I pay up.
To make things worse, I found out at work that I am being put on a new project that requires me to travel extensively to visit a client in the next couple of months.
Can I just have some peace and quiet??? Argh!!