Friday, April 29, 2005

he is a sucker for me

All this last week the Hubs has been taunting me with a surprise. He refused to tell me until he got back from the business trip he has been on since Monday morning. Hence why I was left to deal with broken heat and dying hostas and all the rest.

THEN last night he went out for drinks with a friend before he came home from the airport, so I was sufficiently tortured by the time he got home and desperate to know what it was.

I received a little white package wrapped in tissue paper and tape.

And... (drum roll please)


I practically spit with excitement and I can't bring myself to eat it just yet, so it is sitting in a china bowl in our dining room for all the world to admire its glory (you can see it on Flickr at the left).

I knew he was a sucker for me, and he tells me he is a sucker for me, but this is concrete PROOF of his suckerness.

Thank you hubs.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

let me tell you a little story...

Last summer, one of my dearest friends asked me to be her birthing coach. You see, her husband was taking the g-d-awful BAR EXAM* in New York, NY and her due date was right around the actual BAR EXAM. Just in case, she figured that she would ask me to show up in advance and if he happened to be right in the middle of the actual exam, I would come.

But puh-leaze, that was never going to happen, so I said skip-i-dee-do-da, of course! Truth be told, I was really excited! I love "A Baby Story" on TLC, and this is practically the same thing, right? We talked about it a few times, she forwarded me her birthing plan and made clear all her wishes. I was totally prepared, but regardless, it was never going to happen, so I didn't worry.

My dear friend's due date came and went with no baby. Monday, July 26th, the day before the bar exam, she went to her OB to see what the hold-up in vacating the apartment was. They took a look and decided that it was not going to happen anytime in the near future. The baby was wayyy far away from coming, she could relax. So, since the BAR EXAM was in New York, they both headed down there from Connecticut to stay with her mother in New York.

That night, she drove her husband into the city for the BAR EXAM and wished him luck. This is the last I hear from her, so I am not worried. Two days of the BAR EXAM starting the next morning, but the baby is not coming, so no problem. Meanwhile, I am in mid-packing for my impending move to Boston. I stay up all night with my mom packing, packing, packing, and finally collapse at 5am to get a couple of hours of sleep before the movers come.

And then I got the call at 7:15am. She is in labor.

Que? Labor. She and her mother and sister are getting into the car and driving back to Connecticut, and not telling her husband a damn thing. The man needs to take the BAR EXAM and who knows how long this show could take, right?

I frantically organize my mother with my two dogs, finish packing up the last of my things, show her where everything is, tell her what to tell the movers and start on the road to Connecticut. While on the road, I am getting calls from my laboring friend with updates.

"We made it to Connecticut! I stopped at the hospital! I am 4 cm dilated! I'm going home to labor some more!" "Fantastic!"

As we drive, I alternate between excited and terribly nervous. I remember the people who told me that perhaps this was not a good idea, being that I have not yet born children, and I may be scarred for life. But there isn't time for those thoughts, so I push them out of my head.

I'm halfway through the two hour drive and getting more excited by the mile. Her baby will be here so soon! Yippee! And then it happened. A snap, and the car started slowing down on the middle of the 95 expressway. I pressed on the gas frantically and tried shifting the car back up, but I am slowing down very quickly while 18 wheelers and rush hour psychos honk at me and swerve to get out of my way.

Oh, and I am in the fast lane on the four lane highway.

The car stops in the middle of the road and nothing I do is changing anything. I start praying to whatever g-d will listen to please save me from the people slamming on their brakes behind me from 70 mph speeds, please make the car work, please don't let me die. I dial the hubs, fairly unhappily, and then call AAA. And then a construction worker comes over from further on down the highway. We chat, as cars zoom by at speeds fast enough to rattle my car. He goes back, gets his truck, and agrees to push me down the highway and onto the shoulder, since there is no middle shoulder and I am literally blocking traffic in the far left lane during rush hour.

The helpful construction worker does push me across the four lane highway by stopping traffic and pushing me with his truck. Thank you good samaritan.

I call AAA and start begging. I explain the whole ridiculous situation about my friend being in labor and could they please come help me as soon as possible. They agree, and I believed them when they said the tow truck was on its way.

45 minutes pass. No tow truck. My friend, the construction guy, comes back to ask what the hold up is, so we call back together. Funny part here, folks, there was no record of my call! Funny, huh? I place another request for a tow truck, and construction friend leaves.

And then it starts- the need to pee. The all-consuming, desperate need to pee.

Another 45 minutes pass. My laboring friend is getting a little bit hysterical at this point. To tell you the truth, so was I. I am pulled over on the side of the road and now we are a little bit out of rush hour, but the highway is still busy, it is the dead heat of July, and I have to pee. And oh, by the way, my friend is in labor and I'm her birthing coach?

I finally decide that the need to pee outweighs the risk of the tow truck driver coming right that second and leaving me. I climb out of the car and examine the situation. I see some buildings across the on ramp a little down the highway, through a gully, and over a fence. It doesn't look that high, I think I could jump it. So I lock the car, run crazily across the on ramp, climb through bushes that are far thicker than they looked from 2 blocks away, and climb the fence. Now scratched, disheleved and with leaves in my hair, I prowl the parking lot figuring out where I can pee. Voila! There is a day care center with a door propped open!

And here, I will reveal to you one of the most embarassing moments of my life. I sneak into the day care center, run into their bathroom and have one of the happiest peeing moments of my life. And then, I clogged the toilet. I don't know how, and I don't know why. All I can think is that the day care children's toilet was not prepared for a grown-up amount of toilet paper, but it clogged, and starting running water and urine all over the floor. So I did what any self-respecting person would do. Washed my hands, exited gracefully and ran the hell out of the building and back to the fence.

Fence, bushes, cars zooming across on ramp, and I see a policeman talking on the walkie talkie near my car. Hurray! I make it back, and we argue about why I left the car and whether I should have and what the predicament is. It has now been 2 hours and AAA is still not here. The policeman decides that he will make a call to AAA and tell them that this is an unsafe situation, which it was and I already told AAA 4 times that it was, and to come immediately to tow the car. It worked!

10 minutes later I arrive at the closest car dealership and BEG them to drive me to my friend's house, given the whole still-in-labor-thing. They do! A nice nice nice man with 6 children drove me to her house, and a whopping 17 hours later, my friend's beautiful son is born. Her husband made it, stayed up all night with her while she labored, saw his child come into this world, and then took a car back to the BAR EXAM with no pencils, no food, no water and no sleep. And he passed!

And the baby? He was born on July 28th- my birthday. And I would do it all again, just to see that unbelievable moment when all of a sudden there were 7 of us in the room, instead of 6.

*capitalized because all truly evil and satanic rituals should be capitalized.

not to mention...

I forgot that among all her great qualities, my friend also has terrific taste in men, since her significant other reads my blog every day!

I love my adoring fans : )

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

my friend, the go-go dancer.

When I was in law school, I made some mistakes. I picked a job and an employer that was not right for me. I even realized it during my last year of school, but I somehow convinced myself that it would be fine and that I would enjoy it. I didn't. I was terribly unhappy. I worked all the time. And by all the time, I really mean, all the freaking time. 100 hour weeks, all-nighters, flights all over the world at the drop of a hat, I even worked 50 hours straight once until I fell asleep on the table surrounded by clients.

I believe that I actually had a nervous breakdown during the 50 hour marathon and I locked myself into a conference room and called the hubs in a puddle of tears. I literally could not pull myself together enough to stop crying. I had been at the printers for 40 hours and was facing another night of work and I could not imagine how I would make it. It was at that moment that I decided I had reached my limit.

Now one of my dearest friends in the world is suffering through the same situation. The same employer, different circumstances, but the same unacceptable behavior and the same hopelessness.

I wish that I could make her understand that as bad as I felt at the time, as interminable as I thought those feelings were, as much as I blamed myself and felt like a failure, I look back now and realize that I wasn't insane and it wasn't my fault. People are cut out for different things. Some people can stand to be treated like the scummy dirt on the bottom of other people's shoes, other people know that they deserve better and demand better. Some people can learn not to take things personally, others just can't separate the insults from their own self-worth.

I definitely fall into the category of people who cannot tolerate the ill-treatment. For a long time I felt like a wimp and a failure. I couldn't see how others could happily march into work day after day while I spent Sunday nights sobbing. But I know now that the same reason I couldn't stand the meanness is the same characteristic that makes me unique and the same characteristic that makes my dear friend unique.

My friend is one of the most amazing, brilliant, and FABULOUS people I know. She is kind, and generous, and creative, and funny, and caring, and above all other things, believes that you should treat people the way you want to be treated. She looks for the good in people, even when they are assholes all over the surface. She tries to make a difference in the world and in people's perception of the world. She is so much more than a stuffy/boring lawyer. In two days, one person referred to her as a fantastically funny spit-fire and another said that she was a lawyer by day and go-go dancer by night. I am truly blessed to have her in my life.

And I KNOW that she will find a way to extricate herself gracefully from this current situation, and I KNOW that she will find happiness and clarity again once she is out of there. No matter how hopeless it seems now. All I can do is keep telling her that and be there for her when the crazies get crazy yet again.

It will get better, and one day we'll look back and laugh at this ridiculous time in our lives. And then forbid our children to go to law school.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

applause, please

I thought we should go over my last 24 hours...

Last weekend, when I went out and prepared my garden planting beds for my plantings, I found these terrible weeds. Big mounds of weeds with long roots that I had to violently attack with my shovel and ho and tear from the ground. I threw these weeds into a big garbage bag that I set by the back door to deposit in the yard trash. Yesterday, though, when we got back from vacation, I noticed all these green leaves poking out of the ground near where I tore up the weeds. Plus some lovely tulips and daffodils nearby. I examined the green leaves, the hubs examined the green leaves, and after a call to my mother-in-law, we determined that these lovely green leaves were in fact Hostas. Hurray! We were going to plant Hostas anyway, now we have to plant less.

But then I paused and realized that perhaps I should go look at my bag of weeds sitting by the back door. Guess what? They have matching green leaves to those out in the yard. I SPENT HOURS TEARING UP HOSTAS so that I could go to the store and buy MORE HOSTAS. Hostas were in my garden already.

So tonight and tomorrow shall see me replanting the torn up Hostas and hoping they do not die. They are chilling in buckets of water right now, and if you would like to pray to the gardening gods, I would appreciate it.

Then, my beloved heat died again last night. In case you are keeping notes, I discuss my love affair with heat here. At 10pm, I was fighting with the heating people on the phone, while they insisted that this was not, in fact, an emergency and I needed to wait until today between 10 and 4pm for them to call. Because I don't work or anything. I pitched a fit and they said they would fit me in last night, but they didn't. So when I get home tonight I will have to again call and pitch a fit and insist that it is an emergency. Fabulous.

Additionally, the hubs put a hold on our mail, after I screamed and threatened that I would NOT go pick up the held mail. I work over 12 hours a day and I just cannot deal with the additional tasks. I am difficult that way. But he ignored me and put a hold on the mail anyway, after extracting a promise from the post office that they would deliver the mail, after explaining how difficult his wife was. But guess what else? They won't deliver the mail!

So this morning I had to drive to the secret post office sorting facility to pick up the mail. I am mad and would like to punish the hubs, but there is a letter in that mail that I need, so I gave in. It took me 4 times around the block and 2 Bostonians screaming at me before I finally found this secret sorting facility. I park in someone's driveway, since it'll take 2 seconds, and run to the door.

It is locked. So I knock, then I bang, then I pound on the door, while approximately 7 people walk by inside, glance at me, and continue on. 15 minutes of pounding later, someone finally comes to the door and tells me that my held mail is not there, was never there, and no one could ever have told me to come here. We argue, while he is insisting that I am crazy, and I apparently made up the story. I am pissed at this point and start gearing up to get really angry, but then realized that there was just no point.

I get back into the car and spend the 20 minutes to work mumbling about what I am going to tell the post office when I call them from the office. Half an hour late at this point, I march in and dial the held mail number prepared to let 'er rip. Oops! Another guess what! The mail WAS there and the guy just didn't want to check for it! "Sorry for the misunderstanding, but you can come back and get it now."

It only took one full minute of hysteria before the helpful woman suggested that they might be able to go against policy and deliver the held mail. Hmmm, yes, I think it may be in all of our best interests for me NOT to come down to their facility again. G-d bless the post office.

Oh, and this post? Blogger ate it the first time, so I had to write it twice.

And all this before 9:30 am. I would go home and go back to bed, but its freezing in my house. I'll just stay at work instead.

Monday, April 25, 2005

I'm back!

After a terrible few days with a sick puppy in the vet hospital, we left for a week of vacation to Florida. I soooo needed that little break.

We went to Sarasota, Florida, where the in-laws live, but we snuck away to a hotel for a couple of days to spend some time alone and relaxing. Then we visited friends in Naples, Florida, who have 3 dogs. 3! Dogs! In addition to our 2! It was a madhouse, but we laughed pretty much nonstop from start to finish. Then we headed back to Sarasota to celebrate Passover with family. That was also a madhouse with niece, nephew, cousins, sister and brother in law and all the parents. Phew. I need a vacation after my vacation.

I also told the hubs to go ahead and schedule a vasectomy after our crazy weekend with all the kids, but that is another story.

We had lots of fun and Murray was far better from his experience of being sick the week before. And we are rested and relaxed and happy.

So please forgive my little hiatus from blogging, I have lots of silly stories to make it up to you!

Thursday, April 14, 2005

my commercial

Days at the veterinary hospital: 2

Hours spent worrying: 39

Veterinary bill: $1320.60

Knowing that your precious
snugglebum- Murray- will be okay? PRICELESS

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Formal Apology

Dear Mother Nature,

I would like to heartily apologize for any misunderstanding in my previous post. I am terribly appreciative of all warm weather you grant us, mere earthlings. I would never take your generosity for granted.

I think you are a marvelous fantabulous Mother Nature.

If you would please refrain in the future from punishing us with SNOW in the middle of April, after allowing us to have a sweet taste of warmth and 74 degree weather after 6 months, I would greatly appreciate it.

Your enormously grateful gardener and sunshine lover,

Monday, April 11, 2005

Don't jinx it!

Thank you, thank you Mother Nature. It looks like spring may, possibly, potentially, hopefully have arrived. This Sunday was a GLORIOUS 74 degrees! We went to a friend's house for lunch and ended up sitting outside in this miracle weather and I was hot. HOT! Can you believe it?

We came home and I spent hours in the backyard in shorts working in the garden. I use the term garden loosely, because my garden consists of a mound of dirt full of weeds. So today I am walking like an 85 year old because my back hurts so much from shoveling holes in the dirt and throwing compost down in the holes. Well, kindof.

After reading my gardening magazines and books obsessively for weeks, I went into the backyard determined to dig some big holes, shovel in compost, and fill the holes back in, just as the diagrams show. The problems started when I couldn't even get the shovel into the ground, it was so full of weeds and roots. I tried for an hour to dig a hole, but finally settled for taking my plow, unsettling the dirt, throwing compost on top, and using the ho to spread it around. The hubs and I walk around making jokes about our ho all day long, by the way.

Who knew that dirt was so heavy? And hard to move around? And horror of horrors, FULL OF WORMS?!?!? ACK! Every few minutes another disgusting little slimy worm is unearthed and I have to keep from gagging. They are so ugly and creepy. The hubs thinks this distaste for worms is highly amusing and just chuckles as I gag. I fear that this may get in the way of my gardening dreams, but we'll see. I purchased some lovely spring green gloves to keep the worms from my skin. I think I'll be fine (and fashionable).

If all else fails, I will teach Tango and Murray to start killing worms on command.

Hurray for spring!!!

Friday, April 08, 2005

oh heat, how I love you so...

I have a love affair with the heater in my house. To tell you the truth, it is a tempestuous love affair. The heat shuts down, we fight, I call in a third party, lets call him a therapist (or repair man) and then we make up. Since we purchased our lovely home in October, my dear sweet heater and I have fought 4 times.

The beginning of our little "tiffs" started with the hubs.

You see, the hubs fancies himself a "handy man."

A few days after we moved in, he decided that the screws to the house's thermostat were loose so he decided to remove the thermostat cover, spackle the holes and rescrew in the cover. He did, but later realized that the cover stated in large letters that you needed to use a level. We don't own a level. Problem, right? Not for the hubs, he just eyed it, told me it was fine and rescrewed it back in. Throughout the rest of that night, I kept commenting to him that it seemed a bit cold. After complaining enough, he went downstairs to check the thermostat and found that the spackling job made it so the sensors weren't touching anymore and our heat had shut itself off.

No problem, the hubs is a handy man.

He fixed it by screwing it in further and pushing it a little. Then he realized that the temperature was off because since it is no longer level, it is detecting the wrong temperatures. Since we don't own a level, though, he isn't sure how off it is.

The next morning, though, he left on a business trip, sweet dear husband that he is. So I was left with this new thermostat that is clearly telling me the wrong temperature, but we're not sure by how much. The hubs tells me to continue pushing the knob up until I find the right temperature. This was a BRILLIANT idea. The following night I turned the temperature up and was awake half the night because it was 150 bloody degrees in the house. The next day, I turned it down and had to sleep in a sweatshirt and flannel pajamas because it was too cold.

I picked up the hubs from the airport and drove him straight to Home Depot to resolve this situation. We spent two hours picking out a new thermostat, with the hubs insisting that he didn't need the manual to the furnace. We came home at 10:15 pm, he spent 30 minutes installing it and finally proclaimed it fixed. Mysteriously, though, the heat wouldn't come on. At 1 am, my handy man finally decided he should READ THE MANUAL. On the first page, the manual said "Not compatible with steam radiator heat." Guess what we have? By 1:30 am he had uninstalled the other thermostat and reinstalled the old one and we were back at square one.

My hubs, the handy man.

A couple of days later, we headed back to Home Depot with our non-functioning thermostat and searched for over an hour for a new thermostat compatible with steam heat. The whole time, we have a Home Depot employee assisting us and encouraging the hubs to replace all of the windows in our home "because that will lower your heating bill." Need I remind all of you that I live in Boston? Where the temperature is sub-zero most of the time? And it snows? And I have no heat? And my current handy man isn't working out?

Anyway, we install the new thermostat. Since that week, that same thermostat has been hanging off the wall with wires exposed because he hasn't screwed it in all the way. The day after Thanksgiving, the heat shut off. My handy man couldn't figure out the problem, so I called in a therapist (aka repair person) and he proclaimed the problem to be the "part that lives in the flame." Apparently, the piece that lives in the flame and tells the rest of the furnace that the pilot light is lit, broke. He replaced it and we were on our merry way.

In January, we got back late at night from a weekend in Florida to a 40 degree house. Inside. We called the therapist, and two hours later, he discovered the problem. Again, it was the piece that lives in the flame. When I advised him to check if it was the piece that lives in the flame, he asked me "what was that guy? A fucking poet?"

February? Same thing. This time the therapist insisted that our problem could not be the piece that lives in the flame, and four hours of changing every other piece, led him to the same problem. March and a repeat of that before-mentioned scene.

Now we are in April, and my love, the heater and I are in need of a break. I think he should spend the rest of the spring and summer thinking about how he has been treating me and how I love his heat and wish he would stick around all winter. I am not enjoying the therapy visits, and I wish he would stop the behavior.

And I promise, no more visits or tinkering from my favorite handy man. I have forbidden him from working with those parts of the house that may end of killing me.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Just call me Bobble

During my trip to California a couple of weeks ago, I had 4 people comment on how I looked far too young to be a lawyer. Before you start throwing things, I will admit that, of course, looking young makes me happy. But when one of the main purposes of your job is to inspire confidence in those people for whom you are working, looking young is NOT such a good thing.

If I looked a couple of years younger I would be fine with it. But at the airport security checkpoint the helpful man asked if I needed my mom to come back to the gate with me. Because he thought I was under 18. And at the movies, I had my arm threaded through my mom's and another mother with her teenage daughter said "See, Sarah, we can be friends!" Her daughter replied, "yes we can, EVENTUALLY!" We all had a hearty laugh over that, and then the teenage daughter asked me what grade I was in.

So when I got back to Boston, I decided that I had to do something about this. I could wear more makeup, but let's be frank. I am damn lazy about getting ready in the mornings. I could change my wardrobe, but between our taxes and the hubs imminent schooling, I don't have extra money. Changing my hair seemed to be the best idea.

I made an appointment this weekend to get my hair cut and told my hairdresser that I needed to look older. Her suggestion was to go shorter and do layers. So layered and shorter we went. And now? I look like a bobble head. You know those dolls that have huge heads on their little bodies and the heads bob when you tap them? Yup, thats me. To my surprise, when my hair gets shorter it also gets more body. To a person with stick straight hair, this was shocking. And since there are loads of shorter layers, there is a lot of body. The top and sides of my head are very full bodied hair and the bottom layers hang normal and straight.

The hubs says I look fine, and I have resorted to pressing down on my hair intermittently to make it lay flatter.

I know, I know, it'll grow out. At least I look like an older bobble head.

On Strike

The pups appear to have rejected the notion of daylight savings time.

This is the fourth morning in a row that we have gotten up out of bed and they have peered bitterly at us from beneath the covers. In fact, this morning I cheerily told them it was time to wake up, which normally elicits some tail wagging and movement to the edge of the bed where I put them on the floor and we all go about our merry business. But this morning they didn't even turn their heads to look at me. They ignored me. The Dogs. Ignored me. The same dogs who hear me opening a package of cheese from down the block, ignored me when I spoke to them from 12 inches away.

I finally left to take a shower and when I came back Tango and Murray had each moved to their own pillows on the right and left sides of the bed and were lying with their heads on the pillow and their bodies under the covers. Like humans.

I feel like there is something wrong with this picture.

Monday, April 04, 2005

Note to Self

Do NOT, I repeat, do NOT make the hubs baked beans for dinner ever again, no matter how much he begs for them.

Unless he is traveling for work, then it is fine.

Friday, April 01, 2005

the cool kids

My pups each have their own webpage on this thing called Dogster. I know, I know, I am obsessed, but I blame this on my time living in Manhattan, where spending half your salary on your dog is accepted and expected. My dogs have attended doggy day care, which they did not like, and gone with us to the movies and out to dinner. Many times. Just call us crazy dog owners, everyone else does.

Dogster has this button on each dog's page where you can ask the dog to be your "Pup Pal" and then they send an email to said dog, or said dog's owner, and ask them if they would like to be "Pup Pals" with your dog. This means that I get approximately 6 requests PER WEEK for Tango and Murray to be Pup Pals with some random dog.

Don't get me wrong, I appreciate the requests, and I am sure Tango and Murray do too. They love new friends. But as their list of Pup Pals is growing, I have realized that my dogs are more popular than I am. They have people asking them to be their friends all the time and I am starting to wonder why people don't email me 6 times a week to ask me to be their friend? I bathe more often than Tango and Murray do, I don't lick my crotch, and I don't eat dirt. I feel these are all desirable traits in a friend. They do wear more expensive clothes than I do and they travel in a Kate Spade bag, but still.

Dogster is a little bit like Oprah too, I have discovered. We found Tango's long lost brother on Dogster. His brother from his litter from his breeder who also lives in a suburb of Boston. One of these days we'll have a reunion and maybe I'll videotape it and post it. I'm sure you can't wait. See? Just like Oprah.