Occupation: Girl

Please close the door and switch on the fun without fail.

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GOD! WHAT THE HELL, PEOPLE! There's a hole in the pool, there's a hole in the roof, the carpet needs another steaming (which we do ourselves) and the dogs need bathing again (which we don't, because they need medicated baths and gland-expressing and ear squeegeeing), AND money is tight. You know how people get onto you about using the word "literally" in a non-literal manner? Well, we are literally finding some new problem every time we turn around. "We fixed the shower--but the dogs need--and the pool--and the roof--AUGH!"

For real. Mom and I were discussing the pool as we went upstairs to dig out her box of vintage Nancy Drews--the original books, all of them, preserved in amber since her childhood--when we discovered a puddle on top of them. Fortunately, the books were dry and unharmed, but this caused much dismay and poking in the rafters and the spot diagnosis that the storm last night (and, very likely, previous storms as well) had damaged the roof. As evidenced by... the shingles in the yard. Oh. Those. Duh. So I'm sitting here waiting for the contractor to get here so I can sign his release and he can climb on the roof and, knowing our luck, probably fall off and break a tree or something. And while I'm waiting for him, the pest control guy comes. (This is what I do, you know. This whole "writing at home, taking a semester off" thing? Whether I'm in class or not, I'm kind of the unofficial housekeeper. I am the answerer of doors and the greeter of handyguys and the walker of dogs and the wiper of pee. Also the fetcher of mail, the mopper of floors, the raker of carpets, and Meko's Seeing-Eye Girl. And me and my toiletbowl hands need a change of scenery, quite honestly.)

And what I wanted the Nancy Drew books for was to do some old-school reading-up for the YA detective series I'm hoping to plot out, but it doesn't look like I'm going to get much of that done this afternoon.

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Oh my God yo. That day sucks like the suckiest day for Sucky the Sucking Tuna Fish in a whirlpool.

If I should be fortunate enough to win the lotto or perhaps find sacks of money falling out of a bank truck I am sending youse guys some domestic type assistance.

Aww, don't worry about us. We'll make out okay. I'd be just as happy with a shipment of good luck. : )

Here's to unofficial housekeepers flailing about when the houses they are supposed to be keeping begin to fall apart.

Try to work on the detective series if you can, though. It might be a nice stress-reliever.

So I'm sitting here waiting for the contractor to get here so I can sign his release and he can climb on the roof and, knowing our luck, probably fall off and break a tree or something.

AHAHAHA. Your concern for the contractor is truly touching. XD

Oh my god, I love your icon.

Your icon is fantastic...

I can get the house stuff. My mom and I have an old house [old by california standars, 50 years old] and it has problems all the time. Pool leaks, the piping is shoddy, and the stupidness of a flat roof. Good luck with all the house stuff.

Totally random part: but you seem to like Nancy Drew, and journals, therefore I thought I would share some Nancy Drew journals I saw, and that you may like.

Oh, *dude*. I love journals, period!

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I would, but I'm waiting on the Roof Guy to finish up and/or fall. *sob*

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Where's my pink satin pillow! And my Evanescence CD!

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Then I won't even mention the eye argh essss!!

I hope you either stop finding problems or get better at denial. ("I don't see a hole. Meko, do you see a hole?" "*pantpantpant*") Seriously, best of luck. What y'all really need is income, so I'm going to concentrate my well-wishing on your mom's job search.

This probably makes me a horrible person, but despite your woes, I couldn't help LOLing at this:

So I'm sitting here waiting for the contractor to get here so I can sign his release and he can climb on the roof and, knowing our luck, probably fall off and break a tree or something.


Mercury is in retrograde. I don't know if you believe in astrology, but even though I find it shady at best... I pay attention when Mercury is in retrograde.

Check out the thread devoted to it at BPAL.org in Walking the Old Paths.

I think that astrology is most helpful as a series of metaphors to help us deal with behavior (like, when I freeze up and get perfectionist, it's "my Virgo acting up"), but... yeah. Hell, the moon pulls the tides, why wouldn't other planets affect things?

Yes, the house woes. My parents' house turns 125 this year. It needs a facelift. My house (their guest house) turns 82 this year. Such the spring chicken.

Now, I know this is heresy, but your mother's childhood the Nancy Drew books could probably pay for the roof and a new tree if you put 'em to eBay. I've been selling off DVD boxed sets that I haven't watched in over a year and dresses that I bought for this or that special event and never wore again. Raised enough in the last two weeks to cover gas & electric for the month (it's really extra mad money for scrapbooking supplies, but "gas & electric" sounds more impressive).

Unless they were all first editions or something, I don't think they'd be worth much. I just bought a 1949 Hardy Boys in excellent condition at my local used book store for $5. Of course, if someone's trying to complete a collection and you have the one book they need, it's possible to get a good price that way.

I know, she said something like that, and I was like, "THE HELL YOU'RE SELLING THOSE BOOKS!" I think it would have killed her to, anyway, but yeah, we talked about it.

Here's the scary part: she pulled a book out for me today and I was like, "...at the Ranch? I don't want a book about a ranch," and went to get the good old "Secret of the Old Clock," and discovered that all the books were WET. I just spent fifteen minutes frantically drying them off.

If she's emotionally invested, then no, don't sell them. I'm still hanging on to my (almost) complete collection of Grace Livingston Hill books, even though they're just paperbacks and have been in storage for the past 10 years. I worked so hard to buy them!

Sending good luck/no mildew vibes your way!

Two books had pretty bad mildew on the bottoms, but the other forty (!) were mostly okay--they're hardback, very sturdy covers, and they kept all of the pages dry. There was some fresh, standing water, though, which makes it look like they'd been subjected to repeated leaks--the storm last night but also previous storms, since there's mildew. I've cleaned them up the best I could and I'm going to let them air out a bit this weekend.

good luck with everything cleo...

and your concern for the contractor just shows how human and caring you are through all of this

kudos to you!

I'm feeling you on the never ending billage. I just finished scanning in the last of my bill invoices for the first week of the month (and the last part of Feb, if I'm being honest) and it took 18 scans. I haven't added them all up yet, but I'm really, really scared at the total damage to my checkbook. And those invoices? Not counting the rent.

And my mom wonders why I have a fear of the mailbox.

Well, snot buckets. I'd come down there and whip things into shape for you if I could. (I have no knowledge of How To Deal Effectively With Disaster, but you'd probably get a few humorous chapters for something out of it, after I was done demolishing everything.)

You know, I have this fantasy house in my mind back on the other end of the state, near the bay. (It may not technically exist, but that's not the point. The point is, it's mine.) It's a three-story white semi-Victorian wooden clapboard job with lots of gables, very airy and light, with a big kitchen and a comfy living room and a library full of books, and plenty of extra bedrooms and bathrooms, a well-stocked kitchen and pantry, a vegetable garden, a creek running through the back, three outdoor dogs, and five indoor cats. All of them know exactly how affectionate to be at any moment. Also I cook really kickass seafood meals for my friends when I'm there.

Here, take the keys and stay a week. I insist. (Fantasy means never having to clean up when you leave.)

Hee! My fantasy house has lots of bay windows, a giant bathtub, walk-in closets in every single room, a wildflower garden, a vegetable patch, maybe some fruit trees, a wooded lot in the back (I like your creek!), and secret passages. Which lead to secret rooms in the attic and cellar. Oh, and a little round tower room like my friend Laura had at her house.

Mine has a hammock in the back yard, and I recently added a goose named Waddles.

Damn, that sucks. It's so weird how bad things just all happen at once, isn't it? =\

Oh, sweetie, I feel for you. But such is life. I've figured out that it's not the "bad stuff" that gets you down (for we "Steel Magnolias" solidier on through that sh*t), but the mundane. The leaks, the breaks, the dirt and grime that hard as we try to make go away, always comes creeping back.

I'm excited about the prospect of a book series from you. Hang in there. Don't let the mundane sh*t get you down!

If anyone in the house is willing, your vet or groomer can show you how to clean the dogs' ears and express their glands yourself. It's not hard, just icky. Your vet probably also sells their shampoo, so you could buy a bottle and bathe them at home. Not a fun task, but it'd be cheaper.

I'm telling ya, the ice cream should have been sacrificed. Well, there's still time..

On other news, check this out http://www.playerappreciate.com/pimphandle.asp

Also did you hear about the Blooker Prize? http://www.lulublookerprize.com/. I definitely think you should be in the running for the 2007 prize and will be more than happy to nominate you if that's OK.

Awww, bless. I don't know if I'd qualify, since the book came out in 2005, unless we can get the American distribution up and running this year. : )

Unless the rules change, you should qualify for the 2007 prize. The rules state only that the "blook" has to be published to date. If I'm reading it correctly, the submission has to be made by either you or your publisher.

I hope you pursue it, that would be so cool to see on future editions "Winner of the Blooker Prize".

Fortunately, the books were dry and unharmed, but this caused much dismay and poking in the rafters and the spot diagnosis that the storm last night (and, very likely, previous storms as well) had damaged the roof. As evidenced by... the shingles in the yard.

Man, do I ever feel your pain. I often get the feeling like I'm living in an old shoebox--so many things are falling apart/need fixing. This house is more ancient than the pyramids, I kid you not.

Sending a multitude of good vibes your way.

Ooooh ... Vintage Nancy Drew. I have a couple of those. It amazed me when I discovered the that original Mystery of the Ivory Charm was at least twice as long as the later releases. Of course, I was stupid in my youth, not recognizing the potential gold mine I had, and wrote in the inside covers of both books :\

Ah well, Nancy Drew still has that nostalgia factor for me. It was the first set of books I'd read, once I'd gotten out of the typical Kindergarten Dick and Jane books. Sadly, my own daughter (who just turned 8 in September) decided to skip the Nancy Drew and go straight for the Harry Potter.

.oO(okay, so I'm not too upset that reading-level-wise, she's beyond Nancy Drew)

It's funny--I just stumbled across a 1947 edition that's the original 25 chapters (not the edited-down post-1954 20-chapter versions), and it's so much more engaging than the rewrites. There's just so much detail and even some WTFness in there that's just so entertaining. I wish I had '47s for all the titles.

I gotta say, though--I was eightish when my mom tried to get me to read Nancy Drew, and I couldn't get into them. I had a feeling I'd appreciate them now that I'm older, and I tell you what--Nancy is just about the best role model ever. She's feminine (she shops! she knits! she flirts!) but she's also, like, a licensed diver and a seasoned rider and a champion sailor and she freaks out just enough under pressure that you empathize with her ("she thought wildly" shows up a lot), but then she pulls it together and never wimps out. She can and will do just about anything, but not in such a way that you hate her for being perfect. I seriously would want my daughter to read these, if she could get into them.

The NYTimes explains how the Iraq war started:
Seeking to deter Iran and even enemies at home, the Iraqi dictator's goal was to cooperate with the inspectors while preserving some ambiguity about its unconventional weapons — a strategy General Hamdani, the Republican Guard commander, later dubbed in a television interview "deterrence by doubt."
That strategy led to mutual misperception. When Secretary of State Colin L. Powell addressed the Security Council in February 2003, he offered evidence from photographs and intercepted communications that the Iraqis were rushing to sanitize suspected weapons sites. Mr. Hussein's efforts to remove any residue from old unconventional weapons programs were viewed by the Americans as efforts to hide the weapons. The very steps the Iraqi government was taking to reduce the prospect of war were used against it, increasing the odds of a military confrontation.

(Bold emphasis mine.) I really don't know who was dumber here, Bush or Saddam. Also, the truth (as best anyone knows) about where Hussein was when we were attempting to blow him up, including the amusing tidbit that the "Saddam impersonator" with the big glasses that we saw on TV was none other than...Saddam himself.

I didn't know if you'd find these as amusing as I do, Cleolinda, but I've been surfing www.stupidvideos.com and check these out:

Lego Breakdance

Hobbit Folk Rock (heaps funny)

And it's not as good as the first one, but, Chinese Backstreet Boys Part II (and I think it's still the same guy sitting motionless at the computer behind them)

Thought this might interest you in your link recaps of the week...

Chicago makes blind people learn Driver's Ed

Just a little WTF moment

As long as you don't have to be the Squeegee-er of Ears, as well.

Seriously - ear squeegeeing? What, exactly, does that entail??

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