Friday, November 24, 2006

Gah, kill me now.

I bought skinny pants. I know. I know. I've obviously lost my mind. But look, I bought these boots you see. Adorable winter boots, with a little faux fur at the top and a chocolate brown galosh bottom. They'll be awesome for trekking down the hill by my house once the ice starts up. And you know, for looking cute. I put them on with a pair of jeans the other day, but like a good, body-concious, fashion-foward woman, all my pants are bootleg or flare, and so they bunched like a mother around my calf. Unpresentable.

Skinny pants go against every grain of fashion sense I have. I may have a rack that a thirteen year old girl wouldn't envy, but I've got these hips, you see, and skinny pants are made specifically to accentuate this womanly part of the body, a place where I've already got enough to spare. If you've still got the body of an adolescent boy, like all these hipster girls that covet the skinny pant/black ballet flat look, then hoo-baby, these things are like the second coming. They'll invent curves you never dreamed of having, but for me, it's like pear-city. You should have seen me cringing in the dressing room. Swearing to myself that a pair of flats would never see daylight under these things. I felt the sudden need to confess as I passed them to the check-out lady. I swear, they're only for my big fat boots! She was thinking, that girl's gonna poke someone's eye out with those hips. Noooo.

But I got them. They were cheap, and even cheaper with a $20 off discount they were having. They also kind of show my ass crack. Flattering. Long shirts and big boots are about to become staples of my wardrobe.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Tryptophan-less naptime

Hehe. Turkeys flee New Jersey.
Whew. I'm beat. It turns out I have a LOT of crap. With a zipcar I made two trips to the apartment with large loads. The Matrix I rented actually held a ton of stuff, and yet it still seems like I could make ten more trips and not get it all done. Well maybe not that many, and really most of what's left is the empty furniture I'm going to move Saturday with the truck, so that makes it seem like it's still a full house here. Tonight I packed up the kitchen (and discovered more of my stuff missing, natch), always the toughest part with all the glassware. I feel like I've got the Thanksgiving after-dinner coma tiredness, but without the food. Though I did have some delicious strawberry ice cream.

I've reserved a pick-up truck from U-Haul for 6:30pm Friday to the same time Saturday. I hope I don't get screwed and arrived to the not so unusual, "Oh sure, you reserved it, but we don't actually have it here."

In other news, am I the only one who's going to stay home next Thursday to watch Madonna's concert? My brain says no, but my hips say yes. Also, I'm catching up with some Top Chef right now, and can we all agree that Sam is the sexiest man alive? Even though he wears a headband? And much like Henry in Season 1, he's so obviously going to win that I don't even know why they're still going through with the next ten episodes.

What I'm thankful for...

Peace and quiet. I haven't been home for Thanksgiving in...let's see, four plus three, carry the one...nine years. Since my senior year in high school. (Christ, I got old.) Maybe that seems strange to you, but I went to college on the other side of the country, and like most schools, didn't get the whole week off, just Thursday and Friday, which meant I would either have to skip classes or brave the insanity of flying during the holiday. Not to mention the plane fares. Since Christmas was a month away anyway, I just always decided to stay on campus, and honestly, it was the best time of the year. It's the one time of the year you can walk down the street, down your dorm hallway, or just sit in your living room and be totally alone. No expectations that people will call, or that you have to call anyone (except Mom), no one to bother you as you spend the entire day screwing around, watching dvds, or, as my ocd-self likes to do occasionally, totally rearrange my closets.

As you know, I went home to VTA last week, and I'm lucky because my whole family lives in the same city, so I don't need a holiday for them to gather in one place. Instead of boring turkey, we got together and had delicious mexican food. I guess if I were a bigger fan of the Thanksgiving meal, I'd miss going home, but I'm just not. And anyway, my mom made garlic mashed potatoes while I was there last week. (And Mom's meatloaf! Score!)

So today I'm going into work for a few hours, because I make overtime and it's totally worth it to trek downtown for a few hours to make half my rent. Then I'm going home, packing a bit, and picking up my zipcar at 3pm to do a few minor hauls over to the new apartment. Then I'm going to sit in front of the television, order pizza (I've moved up from my traditional undergrad Thanksgiving Lean Cuisine), and DO NOTHING. Or maybe pack.

It's funny, every year more and more people, maybe cause we're getting older, choose not to go home, but hang out with friends in the city instead. I have at least four friends having informal dinners going on tonight, which is great. I thought about hitting them up, but having this day to myself is almost like my own tradition. I'm definitely one of those people that needs 'alone time' every so often, and this is like a guaranteed slot for it.

So anyway, hope y'all are enjoying your holiday. I know I am!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

That's so nice of you.

You guys are hilarious. And occasionally just a tad creepy, but your dedication to finding awesome references to my posts should be commended.

Someone whose email I won't print (I didn't recognize the name, so apologies if I actually know you) responded to my plea for you guys to check my slip-ups by sending me a link to this. It's true, most of my dates tragically end with a vicious argument over proper grammar. I like this part: "Friends of Fitzgerald have advised her to continue disregarding McPherson's poor grammar and instead focus on his character, which sounds like that of a complete asshole." Holla.

And the other day an anonymous fan went searching though craigslist missed connections to find my soulmate, and actually came up with this.

...wait a minute, are you all just trying to find me a boyfriend? Are the interwebs so upset at my frequent singledom that random blog-reading strangers feel the need to abandon their own personal tasks to focus on getting me a man? Yikes! True story: Last night at Solly's I went to the corner of the crowded bar to get some beers and this dude next to me, oblivious to the fact I have eyes and ears, pointed to me (like, through his chest in my direction, except I was standing over him and could totally see it, and there was a mirror in front of us anyway) and said, loudly, "Now that's sexy." (Hahahah, drunk much?) I just looked at him until he finally looked up at me, and I patted him on the back and said, "That was REALLY subtle." And all his friends laughed at him. Heh. Actually, now that I think of it, Solly's was a total meat market last night. We even had some dude try to sell himself to us. No kidding, I have evidence. And there was a hot guy dressed like he was about to go snowboarding who I was makin' teh eyes with, and I have reason to believe he asked Solly about me, in the not so subtle way he turned around to look at me when he went over to chat with them, but I could totally be making that up. (But since Solly reads my blog now, I expect an answer to this next time I stop by, eh? heh.) I wasn't mean to my bar fan though, I laughed and told him, "But it was nice," as I walked away. So don't worry internets, as soon as I find one man in this god forsaken city who's actually in the near vicinity of my type, I promise to date him, and you can go back to your own lives breathing easy for me.

also: I seriously cannot stop listening to electric six. Being as behind on the music bandwagon as I always am, I just found out they finished their tour already (and actually came through dc, and dcist even reviewed it, but I'm so musically lame that it didn't stick), so I'm sad I won't be able to pay $8 to see them somewhere. I was telling david last night that the part of me that wants to believe Jack Black is actually really funny, also believes this is the album he would make if he was that person. Like, you totally want to stand on a table and sing along to it loudly in extreme mock seriousness. love it.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Fox 5, wtf?

I just got home and turned on the telly, which was on local channel 5 from something I watched earlier. The 11pm news was on and as they gave previews going to commercial, some asshole-sounding guy just voiceovered: "Then we'll talk about airports next, not the long lines, but all the breast feeding. What's up with that?"

Gah. My head. Is exploding.

Update! "Stepping in gum, that's bad. Stepping in dog doo, that's the worst!" Omg. I can't believe I almost missed that story. News! Following it was a bunch of awesome shots of dogs shitting which, for the first time ever, made me thankful I never pursued camerawork. Then, inexplicably, the Law & Order theme starts playing in the background as some dude in a stenciled windbreaker displays the awesomeness of his dog shit trash can that's supposed to motivate people to pick it up, or something. Except everyone ignores it, so, personal struggle feature!

Update The Second: You people are all dead to me. What good are the comments unless you people tell me what a terrible writer I am, eh? Sure, leave it to David to tell me over beers that "you know...you're having some "it's/its" confusion." Dude! I know the difference, but my blog posts - if you hadn't noticed - are typically long, rambling stories. I do try to read them over, but I miss a lot of stuff and probably overwhelm RSS feeds from here to Shanghai with the number of times I update because of post-posted observed typos. Also, I don't know how to spell carousel, it would seem. Well, now I do. How embarrassing! Or not, since I fixed them all and no one will ever no!

VICTORY IS MINE

Yes, yes it is. When no one from the airport called me (shocker!) I called back around 4:30pm. After explaining myself, the lady put me on hold, naturally, while she went off and tried to locate my luggage. This gave me a good twenty minutes to describe to Sylvie the latest in the saga now known as Christopher Reveals Himself to be an Infantile Fuckwad, Chapter 22: Now He's Outright Stealing From Me. Good times.

Finally she comes back on the line and says, "Okay, okay! I've got ahold of someone at DCA and she thinks she has it. Green roller, right?" Yes! "Okay, give me some of the contents so we can verify its yours." I told her I had a brand new pair of winter boots with fur on the top, a brand new black winter coat, and, to bring it all home, described a fairly unique medical thing I carry without which I live in more and more pain everyday. She clicks over, then back to me and says, "Hmm, she says she didn't see any of that..." Wtf. She says, "But they found some hotel reservations for a Christopher ..." What? I mean, great! Cause obviously it has to be my bag, but what in the world? So I say, "Oh, that's my worthless excuse for a roommate. Okay, in the zippered pouch under the lid there's a book called About Time." She clicks over, and back, "Yeah! It's there!" She's as excited as me, and she's only been along for 1/20 of this journey, but that's okay, cause I needed someone to cheer with, and in her job she probably understood that.

She asked if I wanted it delivered to my home or office, saying it would take a couple of hours...I hesitated, because 7 is about when I leave work, and then she lowers her voice and says, "Well, let's be honest, it'll be more like 10." And I think, well if it's more like 10, why not midnight, or 2pm. And frankly, I don't even want to think about putting my bag through another set of hands. Fuck it, I'm going to the airport to get it myself. Thank god I flew into National.

So I immediately leave work, since I'm too distracted to get anything done, and hop on the yellow line. When I get off at the airport I go down to the lower level and can see the office at the end of about a hundred yard long hallway, past all the baggage carousels. I can't help it. I start to run. Victory is within grasp! A man twenty feet outside the office tries to slow me down, "Can I help you?" "I'M JUST GETTING MY BAG!" and blow by him. I see it! It's right there! Like an old friend, it jumps into my arms and I squeeze it tight like it will fly away.

Hilariously, I say, "This is my bag" to the people in the office, they nod and I walk right out with it. So you know, if you need some spare luggage or just feel like starting a life of crime with some petty thievery (hey, Christopher, I found you a new job! Not that you're grateful about the last two I got you) this is apparently a good place to start. Before I left I opened it up, concerned that she didn't find the initial belongings I'd mentioned, but they were all there, she was just blind I guess. Also, the two paper tags I'd put on the bag where torn off, along with a zipper pulley. This is why you put leather tags on your bag. Also, why you don't trust your possessions to an unfeeling corporation ill-equipped to find and unconcerned about your meager belongings.

(Btw, I realized after I saw the papers that my roommate's reservations were in there because he often borrowed my suitcase for his work trips. One of the many, many ways I was considerate to him without it ever being returned. Am I sounding bitter yet? Wait until someone you thought was a good friend decides to finally show his true colors and you realize in retrospect that this whole time you were just making excuses for his poor behavior. I've done this one too many times this year, so I've had it. Time to get rid of the worthless chaff in my pool of friends. And I will choose this one time to be petty, and laugh as he sits in his new shitty neighborhood where there's no ... anything, no bars, no shops, no restaurants, no gay people, with his ass on the couch in front of the Tivo every single night for eternity, since he only saw people because I brought them over or invited him out, except when his ex-boyfriend with whom he shares a disturbing co-dependent relationship deigns to come down from new york for a weekend, all the while paying ridiculously high rent since no one will live with him and that vicious mongrel of a dog, including his boyfriend, who prefers to freeload. Yeah, he can steal the tivo and my furniture, I'll settle for karmic revenge.)

Anyway, I was going to do a fashion show with my new stuff, but I can't seem to get my computer to recognize my new camera. Probably a simple reboot will do it, so I'll update later.

Baggage Update From Hell (Updated...Still in Hell)

Well this is turning into a nightmare of epic proportions. Remember how they lied and told me my bag was just on a later flight to Chicago? Then remember how, when I told them how my bag was mis-tagged, they "found" it and "put it on a flight to D.C."? That was also a lie. I was on the phone with them all last night, with people who told me, "Oh, it seems your bag came in on that flight, but there's no record of it actually being there now." Oh? After some fruitless conversations with the baggage agent, she had the delivery person call me. Why? I have no idea. All he could tell me was that, "Nope, it's not here." So, thanks for the confirmation. He also had no record that he was supposed to even pick up a bag to deliver to my address. He said he would call the agent again to see what happened. You know what happened here, right? The agent totally just pawned me off on him. We both know the delivery guy only knows what you tell him, so I can't even get mad at him. FUCK.

This, by the way, is where I start to light shit on fire.

This morning I called them again. I explained the entire situation again (and the story's getting longer each time) to this new agent, who spent an extremely long time putting me on hold while she "figured out what was going on." Turns out, no one has any idea what the fuck is going on. She "thinks" the airports, despite what the lady told me yesterday, did NOT put our bags on flights, but instead delivered them anyway. Which is funny, because no one tried to delivery anything to me, wrong bag or not. But apparently she "thinks" my bag is on its way to Myrtle Beach, the address that other lady gave for her bag. Right.

I was very patient the whole time, and would've been happy to stay on hold all day if it meant I'd get my bag back. But she didn't ever call the airports to talk to someone who could physically look at the bags. She drafted letters. One sent to D.C. and one to Atlanta, explaining that they shouldn't be delivering the wrong bags. That'll do it! At this point I just started to question, "How do I know they're getting these letters? I mean, the lady yesterday told me they were being put on flights, but clearly no one got that message. Can't you talk to someone?"

Quickly she launches into her spiel about how she can NOT talk to the airports because they're "very busy" and "not picking up their phones," and how she's just in a call center in Dallas and can't do anything. I asked if I could call someone at the airport and she laughed and said, "no." WTF. This went on for awhile and it's safe to say our conversation did not end well.

Afterwards I called the other passenger. Turns out she has already authorized the hotel where she's staying to sign for the baggage (she assumed, of course, that they were sending hers), so when she arrives in a few hours my bag may just be sitting there. Lucky for me, she seems to be an extremely nice woman, who's also being screwed because the baggage she lost was carrying all of her baby's clothes and supplies.

We've decided that if my bag is at her hotel, she's just going to call me directly so I can call FedEx and have it delivered myself. And afterwards, I'll metro down to National and see if her bag is still sitting in the AA office, claim it, and FedEx it to her myself. Normally I wouldn't trust a total stranger like this, but clearly the massive incompetence of this corporation leaves us no other choice. At this point I'm actually hoping my bag is on its way to Myrtle Beach.

Update: The other passenger called and said they delivered her bag. Damn. Good for her, but damn. I called the airline again and after being on hold for about 15 minutes she was all like, "Gosh, there's just no record of it!" Omg, I'm never going to see my possessions again. She, however, said she called Reagan National directly, but of course couldn't get through, so she sent them an email and asked them to call me (for once). She said to check back in a few hours if I haven't heard from anyone. I'm thinking about just going down there tonight and taking a look around, but that's probably wishful thinking.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Color Me Annoyed

I can't sleep on planes but always get sucked into taking red eyes, so I've been up since Sunday morning. I was doing great until I got to work and saw the hundreds of emails I had to categorize and discover that, naturally, Outlook is totally effed up and backwards again. That thing has got to be the shittiest program of all time.

My flight was a bit late, too, but then came the fun part. I weave my way through the airport moseyers, down to carousel 6. There are, oh, three other people down there and two lonely bags going around and around. I look at the monitor, but yeah, this is where our flight is supposed to be. A few minutes later the carousel stops. Okay, so maybe everyone just got lost on their way from the plane? And the luggage tractor broke down? The other three folks kind of look around mystified, as do I, and finally they wander off one by one. After waiting awhile I walk to the other end of the terminal to check the monitors again, but yeah, again, I was in the right place, but when I get back to the 6, the monitors have changed and my flight is no longer showing.

Well, fuck.

I walk into the American Airlines office and notice some luggage scattered about, but none of its mine. I consulted the customer representative and, picking up a nearby bag, tell her my bag looks "almost exactly like this one," to which she cocks her eyebrow and asks all superiorly, "Well, is that one it?" The fact I didn't claw her face off even at this point is only by nearly three decades of finely honed sheer willpower in the face of the utter stupidity of the human race. No, ma'am, this here is not my suitcase. Toothless McLiarface (seriously, does AA not carry dental?) supposedly checks into it and tells me my suitcase is on the next flight from O'Hare, and will land at 11am, so they'll deliver it to my office. Alright, totally lame, but fine. I catch the metro home.

While I'm in the shower, struggling to find enough spare toiletries to not make my efforts totally pointless (I mostly succeeded. But I promise not to do any jogging today.), and trying to get warm because my roommate turned the heat completely off despite the fact I told him NOT to do that, I get a couple missed calls and a voicemail.
Hi Heather, this is [another suffering American Airlines passenger] and I've got your bag here, which means you've probably got a suitcase full of baby clothes. Give me a call so we can work this out, thanks.
I groan with the force of a thousand ... groaners. Someone fucking took my bag off the carousel! And the first thing I think is: No, you ho, I don't have your bag because I look at the tag before I take one home with me! ARG!

So I call her back, and it turns out the situation is even worse. She didn't take my bag. She's in fucking Atlanta. As she was searching for her third suitcase down in ol' ATL, the American Airlines employees insisted that this bag was hers, despite the fact that hers was a large black suitcase, while this bag was a small green suitcase with a tag on it that said, you know, MY NAME AND ADDRESS. Why did they insist it was hers? Because this lady had been in front of me in the check-in line, but while she grabbed her last suitcase to take out a pair of tennis shoes, the check-in lady motioned for my bag...and mixed up the fucking tags. So off my bag went to ATL, and hers is probably sitting in the AA office at National.

If you think that getting your bag back from an airline (while the speaker continuously loops, "Our threat level is currently 'Orange'") when the bag isn't registered under your name is really fucking hard, well, you're not wrong. In fact, the only reason my bag wasn't lost forever in the sea of Abandoned Airport Luggage is that this lady had the common sense the AA employees lacked. While they were quite literally trying to force her to take the bag (once they attach you to a bag, they won't let you leave the airport without it), she actually looked at the personal tag I'd attached to it and called me. I'm lucky she was a decent human being, because she totally could have taken off with all my shit and I'd just be screwed in the pooch. And I bought some killer shoes that I would have been very upset about losing, let me tell you. Okay, I bought four pairs of killer shoes. I'd have been raging.

I'd love to know why AA thought my bags were on the 11am flight from O'Hare to National, when in fact they were sitting in a room in Atlanta. (Well, no, actually the bag with the tag was probably sitting three feet away from me.) Did Toothless McLiarface not look up the tag at all? I'd be totally shocked. Or did they not only put the wrong tag on ATL lady's bag, but ALSO put it on the wrong flight? No, really. Shocked..

And apparently all the exciting things in my life happen around baggage carousels.

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