~Friday, June 27, 2008

This Morning

This morning I increased my net worth by $10,000.

~Wednesday, June 25, 2008

In which finding a new job is like finding a new boyfriend

I walked in my coworker's office unannounced, closed the door behind me, and got comfortable in his chair. Dan raised an eyebrow at me and paused his music.

I took a deep breath. "So you know I got a call back for that one application, right? The one I felt least qualified for, but submitted my résumé anyway? Well he called me last night. Actually it was yesterday afternoon. It was 4:40. But I didn't pick up the call because I didn't recognize the number, and I didn't call him back yesterday because it was so close to the end of the day. Anyway, Mike talked me into calling him back at 9 a.m., even though I didn't want to. I thought it was too early and wanted to wait till midmorning. But stupidly I called at 9 a.m. and—of course—he didn't pick up. So I left a message. I wish I didn't leave a message: that way I could keep calling every 20 minutes until he picks up the phone, but now that I left a message I'll look like a crazy stalker. What if he doesn't call me back? When can I call again without looking desperate?" I resumed breathing again.

Dan by this point had raised his other eyebrow and dropped his mouth open a little. "First of all, Sarah, calm down. It's not like looking for a job is like--"

"Finding a date? It exactly is! I have to be breezy. I have to pretend I don't need this job. I am perfectly happy and content staying at my current job. When in reality, I want this job. I want a new job so much that I'm now sitting in your office with the door closed analyzing phone messages. I actually brought my phone in here and played the message for you! What do you think girls do, Dan?"

"I would keep calling until he picks up."

I stood up and leaned over his desk, "And that's why you're single, Dan," I hollered. "You have no game!" And with that, I stomped out of his office.

Instead, I chose to play the dating game. So I did what any girl would do. I called my friend who actually works at the company and had him check the company schedule to see at what time my contact would be free and at his desk, readily available to answer my phone call. And then I called 15 minutes after that.


This morning I got up and cheated on my employers. I dialed work when I knew no one would be in yet, prepared to leave a cryptic message about my whereabouts. I didn't want to lie, but if I sounded sick and they just happened to think I was sick, that's no fault of mine.

I pulled out nicer clothes than I normally wear to my job. Then I put on a full face of makeup— something my job hasn't seen since my first month there. And then I drove to another job.

The interview went well. The interview went really, really well. I Googled the company before the date and read up on background information. I asked insightful questions and laughed at the appropriate times. And when it came to expectations, I held my cards.

He said he'd let me know by the end of the week. Waiting three days to call, I thought, how so very like him.

~Wednesday, June 18, 2008


"I think I'm going to see Sex and the City today," I said thoughtfully as Scott tied his shoes while getting ready for work one Sunday morning.

"No, don't go see it by yourself," he protested.

"Going to the movies by myself doesn't bother me. Really. I worked at a movie theatre for six years, I'm well used to seeing movies alone," I retorted. And because I worked at a movie theatre for six years, I never go anymore. I wait for them to come out on DVD and I order them through my Blockbuster on-line membership. But my father had given me a $25 gift card to the movies for my birthday, this was the only thing being released in the near future that I could stand making the trip to the theatre for and sitting upright for two hours.

"No, don't go alone," he said again. "I'll go with you."

"You heard me, right? Sex and the City?" I raised an eyebrow.

"I'll go see it with you!"

"I thought I was doing you a favor by going to see it alone!" I laughed.

"No, I'll go," he shrugged, acting all nonchalant, like this was a part of his boyfriend duties.

Over the past two weeks while we've been trying to get our schedules to coincide to actually see the movie together, I've replaced my Gilmore Girl-sized hole in my nightly routine with the Sex and the City discs I bought off eBay years ago. (I got the entire series for $40. The only downside is that it is from Taiwan and occasionally a Chinese character appears in the corner of the screen. But really who cares when you have the entire series for 40 bucks?) And while Scott carefully avoided the bedroom when Lorelai and Luke were on the TV, he always found an excuse to join me when it was Carrie and Big. "I miss you, baby," he'd say. "I don't mind watching it if I get to lay with you for a few minutes."

Eventually I got tired of waiting (and avoiding blog posts discussing it) and brought up the subject of going alone again, "Really, it's no big deal. I'm not going to do that girl thing and secretly pout because you wouldn't go with me." And after he protested yet again, it hit me.

My boyfriend is a closeted Sex and the City fan.

And as we sat in the theatre last night drinking my $4.75 Coke, the person who laughed the loudest was the man sitting behind us.

~Thursday, June 12, 2008

He Loves Me

We began with a bang. How cliché is that. What isn't cliché, however, is that the bang was me laying a Vespa down in the middle of the road.

That particular bang was a year ago, today.

At 12:01 a.m. Scott went outside to get something out of his bike while I climbed into bed and opened a book. He brushed back the curtain that separates the bedroom from the rest of the loft and carried a bouquet of roses and a card. "Happy anniversary, baby," he said.

The roses are beautiful; I've never seen anything like them. At first glance it looks like the petals are aging, but actually they're red with darker red tiger stripes. I tried looking the breed up this morning to see what kind they are, but I haven't found them yet. The card personified Scott's personality: it was sweet with a hint of romance, but it opted for the joke instead of exaggerated sentiment. It was like it was written for him.

"I decided to give you this tonight instead of tomorrow because I won't be here," he explained. "I asked the girls at work what I should do, and they said to give you this tonight, otherwise they said you're just going to sit at home alone tomorrow and stew. I'm sorry I can't be here."

The scheduling between us has been difficult. By the time he gets home from closing the restaurant, we only have about an hour before I have to go to bed in order to be up for the morning. He works weekends too so there isn't going to be an anniversary date. Not even a dinner. He even has to stay late tonight, so I'll probably be asleep before he gets home.

I understand this and I'm not upset over it. I was the one who wanted a better job for him; he took it for me. For us. And these are the consequences.

I spent the morning trying to think about my other one-year anniversary with The Alcoholic-- Mark and I split up three weeks before our one-year anniversary, so The Alcoholic would have been the only one. I wondered what I did all those years ago. How we celebrated. But I couldn't remember a single detail about it, not even what season of the year it fell on. It took me hours to realize that we didn't have one either. We took a break two weeks before our anniversary and got back together two weeks afterwards. This is the first time in my life I have ever made it an entire, consecutive year with someone. This is my first anniversary.

It makes me wish we could do more-- do things properly. But the fact I'm going to be spending tonight watching The Other Boleyn Girl while eating Chinese takeout doesn't even matter, because I think about all I have gained within the past year: I fell in love, I gained a partner, I gained a roommate, a car washer, a scratcher of backs, a lover. Someone who laughs when I painstakingly clean out the refrigerator, but forgot to turn it back on so everything in the freezer melts over my efforts. Someone who holds my hand during the season finale of Grey's Anatomy. And I am just so unbelievably happy.

~Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Misty Watercolor Memories

I've been spending a lot of time alone lately. At first I was all Hello, sole power of the remote control and I just ate a bag of gummi bears for dinner and no one saw! But me spending so much time alone can also be very dangerous because I can get stuck in my own head.

I went to bed an hour early and decided to watch an episode of Gilmore Girls before sleep. I've been watching the series from start to finish on DVD over the last six months, and I was on the last disc of the last season. Rory Gilmore was graduating from college. In turn, I started thinking about my own college graduation.

The night before my boyfriend, who had severe undiagnosed mental problems, had this complete breakdown. I don't even remember over what: graduate school applications or just a bout of manic depression, but I stayed up the entire night with him while we worked through whatever had him so wound up. I talked to him in an effort to keep his grip on reality because he was so close to losing it. Then 6 a.m. came and with it the sunrise.

"It's morning," I whispered. "I need to leave in a little bit. I'm graduating in a couple of hours. I need to go home and shower. My parents are coming up."

"Well, I'm exhausted. I think I'm just going to go to sleep," he said.

My face fell and my heart sank. He wasn't coming. My boyfriend wasn't coming to see me graduate. It seemed like every time there was a moment for me, he broke down and everything became all about him, including my college graduation. If there was a moment that should have been about me, this was it.

I graduated in December—a semester behind my original graduation date, and a semester before my friends on the five-year plan. I walked in alone to the staging area in the basketball coliseum. Summer graduates get the football field. Cap and tassel in hand, I scanned the room and found no one.

Come on, Sarah. Search harder. You are at a large university. Surely there is someone here that you know. You won't have to graduate alone.

I looked again and saw him. The guy I dated very briefly earlier that year. There was a lapse in my apartments and for a week I would be homeless. He asked me to stay with him for the duration and I was elated. Moving day came and I packed my truck up. I phoned him to tell him I was on my way... and I never heard from him again. I squatted in my old apartment, sleeping on the floor for three days until I got kicked out, and then I sheepishly called a friend and crashed on her couch for the remainder of the week. And now I was going to have to graduate with that asshole.


"Hey," said the asshole in question, Chronic Bather. I called him that because he always bathed after sex, which is not unusual in and of itself, but he always made me bathe with him before sex, he'd bathe after, and then he'd get up in the middle of the night to do it again. I counted one night: four times within and eight hour span. And it wasn't in the shower either. Chronic Bather would draw himself a bubble bath.

"So, uh, where've you been?" I asked.

"Home. I sold it though. Packed up all my stuff in the back of my car. I'm moving to Atlanta after graduation. Just getting in my car and going."

"That's nice," I forced out. Hope he was going to stay with someone and she'd never pick up the damn phone.

I scanned the room again. I refused to graduate with Chronic Bather. I refuse to share this memory with him. Four feet to my left, I spied Danny. Danny and I were close friends in high school until he started dating a mutual acquaintance who viewed me as a threat. She wouldn't let him hang out with me anymore and told him I had a thing for him. Which I did, but it was innocent and harmless and moreover my self-esteem was so low that I genuinely thought any boy would pick any girl over me, so I never tried. But to my knowledge, Danny didn't go to the same college. I thought he went to the private Christian school.

"Danny! What are you doing here?"

"I transferred here to be with Laura."

"Oh? How's that going?"

"We broke up two years ago."

"Oh," I shuffled. Victory! I thought.

"I'm sorry we fell out of touch, but she hated you after we started dating," he admitted. Yeah, I know.

Danny had big plans to move back home after graduation. His mom was still running a day care out of the house. It's not like my plans were any better. I was staying in the college town, staying with my boyfriend, Poet, who was currently sleeping away my moment.

"Sarah!" I heard someone call.

I turned around to see the boyfriend of one of my drinking buddies. Despite all the time we've spent in each other's company, we were always hammered and weren't that close.

People started forming lines to walk into the coliseum. Our university was so big that we just sit within our school of degree. We'd stand up as a group and move our tassels—no name being announced, no walking across the stage, and our diplomas would be mailed to us six weeks later. I stood facing the three boys wondering who I was going to pick. Who I was going to share my moment with. I chose my friend's boyfriend.

I don't like thinking about my college graduation because it's a painful memory for me. My first thought always goes back to Poet, who chose to simply not show. Five years later and it still hurts.

So now it's a Thursday night in 2008. It's 11 o'clock at night and I'm alone in bed watching Gilmore Girls. Rory's walking across the stage and Lorelai stands up and gives Rory a standing ovation. The tears in Lorelai's eyes convey that she's giving a standing ovation not just to Rory's scholastic accomplishment, but to her life. I begin to cry because that's just so not how it was for me.

I hate thinking about my life because I hate my memories. The fond ones are few and far between and are always sullied with some disappointment later on down the road. Compartmentalizing, I don't think I'm very good at that. Not only do I hate the things that have happened to me, but I hate my thought processes. I loathe my inner voice. I'm not at peace with myself. When I'm left alone for too long, I become this incubator for self-hatred.

With perfect timing, Scott came home to see me crying in the dark over Gilmore Girls. In order to avoid looking like a wad of crazy, I told him very quickly about Poet's no show.

"Why didn't he go?" I sniffed.

"I don't know, honey. I would have gone if I was there."

"God, I just hate my memories!" I pounded.

"We'll just have to make new ones," he smiled.

I wish I could trust him. But in order to do that, I've have to trust myself first.

~Monday, June 09, 2008

You're Not the Only One...

...who hasn't ordered yet!

The book is out!

Support independent publishing: buy this book on Lulu.

I am going to do my best with the currency calculations. The book costs $22.69. $9.00 goes to production costs (that Lulu takes and passes on). Lulu.com takes $2.72 for themselves in fees (but I THINK they're going to waive that for us), and the rest, $10.86, goes to Warchild. However, if you buy it as a download, $18 of the $22.69 goes to Warchild.

It really was a pleasure reading all the entries, over 400 in total. I've found some really great blogs to read because of it! As Peach said, Ariel, Peach, Ms Robinson, Vi, and myself are some very diverse bloggers, and because of our different tastes, a wide range of entries are included. We all had some that we wanted to see in that didn't make it, so know each entry was valued.

We had so much fun doing this, and the response was so great, that we already want to do another one!

The final contributor list is as follows. If there is an error with the spelling of your name or web site, please leave a comment over at Peach's:

1. DBA Lehane
2. Corrine Furness
3. Village Idiot aka VI
4. Erica
5. LilliPilli
6. Naomi Dunford
7. Leigh Forbes
8. Heather Hunter
9. Fweng Ebola
10. Sue Marchant
11. Ani
12. Anna Pickard
13. Ree
14. Desperate Sarah
15. M.McEwen-Asker
16. Paige Jennifer
17. Cat
18. Sarah J Peach
19. Mike Atkinson
20. Diane Mandy
21. Rachel Goldsack
22. Deborah Carr
23. Jenny Maltby
24. Helen Redfern
25. Miss Smack
26. The H Factor
27. Fat Controller
28. L.M.Noonan
29. Kal
30. Ronjazz
31. Nicholas Grundy
32. Rob Ryan
33. Casdok
34. DJ Kirkby
35. Bone
36. Kathryn Harriss
37. Helen Dalby
38. Alex McGlin
39. Kate Kingsley
40. Miss Tickle
41. Just A Girl
42. Catherine Sanderson
43. Enigma
44. Tim Warren
45. Kat Campbell
46. Daren Callow
47. Alan White
48. Zinnia Cyclamen
49. Tired Dad
50. The Boy
51. Swiss Toni
52. Cliff Jones
53. Fiona Williams
54. Kate
55. Isabelle
56. An Unreliable Witness
57. Dave Lozo
58. Anne Byrne
59. Micky McGuinness
60. Phillip Copland
61. Larry Teabag
62. enidd
63. Sugar007
64. Ariel Langham
65. Mr Angry
66. The Overnight Editor
67. Kristin
68. Léonie Kate
69. Barb McMahon
70. Misssy M
71. Meaghan Kearney
72. Pat McKay
73. Swearing Mother
74. Emma Kaufmann
75. Angela La La
76. Boy Does Life
77. Guy Herbert
78. Blue Soup
79. Junior
80. Curvy Girl
81. Prada Pixie
82. JH
83. Ms Robinson
84. Distracted Spunk
85. Jane
86. Jen
87. The Boy Who Could But Didn’t
88. Solarisgirl
89. Beth Smith
90. Wendy Christie
91. Miss Diarist
92. Colin
93. Hope
94. Enny
95. Joanna
96. Reluctant Memsahib
97. Karen
98. Stephanie Shaw
99. Clarissa
100. Susan P
101. Debbie
102. Crystal
103. Scorpy
104. Megan
105. Uncle Norman
106. Johnny B

Support independent publishing: buy this book on Lulu.

~Monday, June 02, 2008

Chef de Cuisine

Scott got a permanent job. A real, live job.

He found the Italian restaurant on his own. He met the owner and scheduled the interviews. He followed up.

And he was awarded his very own kitchen. He's the boss.

He's also making 10k more than me a year.

I can't wait.


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