26 May 2006

Who loves their ISP? I do!

A few words about my cable internet provider, Wave Broadband. Could these folks be any nicer? Even when I am being a bit pissy? Because you KNOW that when Suebob doesn't have any internet access she can be...well...difficult.

I used to have Adelphia Cable, whom I shall not bother to link to. They were insufferable. (Enjoy your jail time, Rigases!) The hold times on service calls...well empires have risen and fallen in less time than it took them to answer the phone. And they only had ONE hold music song. They always had "Unusually high call volume." It's not so unusual when it happens ALL THE TIME, is it?

But I digress.

So my cable box went bad and I took it to the cable office where a nice lady gave me a new one. Which I promptly brought home and plugged in wrong, but I did not know that, so I made a service call. For Friday afternoon of a three-day weekend, see how clever I am?

"Oh, boss, I need Friday afternoon off to wait for the cable guy."

"Are you going to come back after he comes?"

"Hm, I don't know what time he will be there...I sort of doubt it." Sort of, yeah right.

Wild horses could not drag me back to work in the cube on a sunny May Friday afternoon.

Anyway, this whole process involved a bunch of phone calls. Which they always answered within 1 minute. And a bunch of questions. That they did not make fun of me for.

When Jake got here, it took him 15 seconds to figure out my cable ineptitude. Did he make snigger at what a dope I was? No. Was he young and cute? Yes.

Okay then. Fixed. Another satisfied customer. My $55 for next month is in the mail.

24 May 2006

Men - stupid or just clueless?

Kristen had a long, thoughtful and painfully hilarious post today about the question that every woman comes to at some point in their life: Why are men so clueless?

Haven't we all thought: How is it that men can remember every baseball batting average from all time but can't remember birthdays? Why can men spring out of bed at 6 a.m. for a golf date but can sleep through a screaming baby until 10 a.m.?

Here's my Suebobian theory: I think our brains are wired differently. Maybe 90 percent of mens' and womens' programming overlaps, but that crucial 10 percent explains car shows and the Three Stooges.

I used to be a lot madder about it. But then there was an incident that led me to realize that in many cases, men really, really just don't see the same things we do. Would you like to hear about it? Well, okay, then.

I had a couch that was made of a soft denim blue fabric. Nice couch, but my two little kitty terrors had been sharpening their claws on the corners, which were looking kind of ratty.

I went to Bed, Bath and Half Your Paycheck and got one of those nifty slipcovers that would give my couch a Fresh New LookTM for just about $129.99. I picked a nice tan fabric with roses on it because it looked so pretty on the package.

I came home and spent the next 45 minutes trying to get the thing on the couch. Tugging, fluffing, tucking. Sweating.

When I was done, the couch, instead of looking chic like in the package photo, resembled something in the lobby of a cheap hotel. The roses were the size of dinner plates. The tan was in reality sort of a mustard color. And no amount of tucking was going to hide the fact that this was just a cheap slipcover, not real upholstery.

I started hooting and laughing at the travesty my couch had become. My BF came in just then.

"What are you laughing at?" he asked.

"Look," I said.

"At what?" he asked.


He gazed around, utterly mystified.

"Did you get a hair cut?" he asked slowly.

It was then that I realized that he COULD NOT SEE that the couch was different. The couch was so far out of his realm of consciousness that he did not know whether it was blue or covered in pink cabbage roses.

So ladies, don't blame your men. I really believe that they are not trying to be jerks. We just can't see out of their eyes, and we can't see out theirs.


In response to GandhiRules tagging me for Mrs. Fortune's Three Things for a Desert Island meme, I am packing for the trip.

Here the list that will convince you that I am even more odd than previously suspected

Permaculture: A Designer's Manual. With the help of this book, I could have my little island producing more food than I could eat in no time. I would have a crop of timber and lush, edible landscaping.

I love Permaculture. It stands for "Permanent Agriculture" but you can use permaculture principles with anything. One of the principles is that everything in a system has multiple roles and multiple relationships. Another is that each problem holds its own solution.

Here is my Permaculture story for the week: I was annoyed by the amount of abandoned shopping carts in my neighborhood. I was also annoyed that I wasn't getting enough exercise. I thought: what would a permaculturist do, if each problem holds its own solution?

Instead of going to the gym, I went out and returned carts, one cart at a time. It was free, it was good exercise, it cleaned up my neighborhood, and it had an added benefit: I got to talk to my neighbors because they inevitably asked, wide-eyed What are you DOING? They thought I was insane, and of course they were so right.

A Course in Miracles
I have been studying this hefty tome for 9 years. Maybe with endless island time on my hands, I could do the 365 daily lessons for once. And the other 600 pages would keep me occupied for some time to come.

On Cooking and Food
Three non-fiction books? Yep. This book is about the chemistry of food. What happens to food as it gets cooked? Why cheese smells like it does. All that stuff. As a true cooking geek and a bit of a science geek, this fills me with glee.

Bachs Cello Variations.
I could listen to this every day for the rest of my life. Now I just have to decide: YoYo Ma or Jacqueline DuPre performing? Or Pablo Casals? Arg.

The Complete Israel Kamawiwa'ole collection
Just damn fine island music. So sweet, so fun, so soothing.

Los Lobos, La Pistola y El Corazon
I could finally memorize all the words in Spanish because I would have time to practice over and over again. It has some dance music, some fun music, and a couple good cryin' in your beer songs.

Oh, this category is too hard. When I was young and worked at a movie theater, I could watch movies over and over. Now that I am an old cranky wench, I can barely make it through a DVD once. I'm so critical that I'm no fun to watch a movie with.

Office Space, obviously (see blog title). It would remind me of all the fun I was missing by not being at work in my little cubicle.

Repo Man
Why, oh why does this movie make me laugh so hard? It is so weird! But I live for the Plates of Shrimp (coincidences) in the movie and in life.

The Black Stallion
A beautiful movie AND an island movie. I love me some pretty horses.

My sister Laura. Because she is an island girl born and bred. She looks good in a sarong and I know she wouldn't mind some time sitting under a palm tree.

My daughter, Goldie. She may be a greyhound mix to you, but she is a child to me. And where I go, Goldie goes.

My ex-BF Marius. Ok, we quit dating in 1985. And then again in 2000 (long story). But he has the funniest, most elaborate stories you have ever heard. And he has jungle survival experience. He is good with a machete etc. An added bonus is that he and Laura have a great synergy when they are together. So we would be quite three peas in a pod, I think.

Ok, I'm ready. Please transport me to my island now. I said NOW.

For your convenience

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23 May 2006

You're a womb

Stop thinking of yourself as a separate human being. To the government, you're just a womb carrier:

This article was in the Washington Post a few days ago. It reminded me a little too much of Margaret Atwood's "The Handmaid's Tale."

New federal guidelines ask all females capable of conceiving a baby to treat themselves -- and to be treated by the health care system -- as pre-pregnant, regardless of whether they plan to get pregnant anytime soon.

Among other things, this means all women between first menstrual period and menopause should take folic acid supplements, refrain from smoking, maintain a healthy weight and keep chronic conditions such as asthma and diabetes under control.(RS note: And the rest of you don't need to worry about it since you barren hags aren't any good to anyone.)
The U.S. infant mortality rate is higher than those of most other industrialized nations -- it's three times that of Japan and 2.5 times those of Norway, Finland and Iceland, according to a report released last week by Save the Children, an advocacy group. (RS note: perhaps because they have better health care?)
Women should also make sure all vaccinations are up-to-date and avoid contact with lead-based paints and cat feces, Biermann said.

The report recommends that women stop smoking and discuss with their doctor the danger alcohol poses to a developing fetus.
Experts acknowledge that women with no plans to get pregnant in the near future may resist preconception care.

You think? Perhaps because I was thinking of myself as a human, separate from my reproductive capacity. I'm all for healthy babies, but this seems the wrong direction to go. I'd start with health care for all.

21 May 2006

Possibly even worse than plumbing problems

If I had to choose between last months plumbing problems and this month's internet outage...you heard right, my cable modem up and died (on a Saturday, of course)...I don't know which I would choose.

Oh, I guess I could read a book. But there's no substitute for flushing the toilet.

I'm in a cozy cafe right now. TGFW (thank God for wireless).
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