Tuesday, June 20, 2006


(No, former A.C.T.S. members, this one really wasn't my fault.)

So, I had this whole rant worked up -- a fairly snarly one -- and it all vanished in a wisp of empathy this afternoon.

This morning, I was on my way to work on an Essential Monday. The Actual Monday was part of a long weekend with the CBB in Telluride (and the quaint suburb of Rico), visiting my Best Friend Sara, and taking in the Barenaked Ladies latest Colorado appearance, at the Telluride Bluegrass Festival.

So anyway.

It's Essential Monday, I've just (reluctantly) left the CBB at my place, snoozing away. I came to a stop behind 8 or 10 cars who were also stopped for the stoplight ahead. Was thinking about the day to come, and debating if I wanted to have office coffee or water with my granola-bars-masquerading-as-breakfast, when


I got rear-ended.

The world was all blurry and whirling for a moment, and then I took a moment trying to figure out what had just happened. Crap. Somebody just fucking rear-ended me! Shit! Wait a minute....I can't see anything.

Where are my glasses? Where the fuck are my fucking glasses? Oh crap oh crap oh crap what just happened and where are my glasses? I had hung my clear pair in the cell phone holder when I put my sunglasses on, where are they? Crap. Okay, the car in front of me is moving; put on the hazards so people know I'm not moving. Where the fuck are my glasses?!?

Now here's where it takes a twist. As I'm giving one last look for my glasses (incidentally, my vision is roughly 20/5,130 without them), I see the car that hit me pull out from behind me. I can tell it's a silver small SUV of some sort, but nothing more. I'm giving them some sort of motion with my hands that was supposed to mean "I can't find my glasses because you hit me so FUCKING hard, please don't go anywhere, no don't you DARE run away". And they pull away.

Hit. And. Run.

So, I use my worthless eyes to make sure no other car-shaped blobs were in the right lane and pulled into the nearest parking lot -- my optician's building, as irony would have it. Called the cops, and explained that someone just fucking hit-and-ran me. While waiting for the officer on the scene, I looked more for my glasses. The ones that were in the cell phone holder were on the floor of the passenger's side. The ones that had been on my face were now in the back seat.

The tiniest little police lady showed up a bit later to take care of the details. Very nice tiny police lady. Very understanding, with a sense of humor -- something that helps a never-been-in-an-accident-like-this, nerves-shot-to-hell person like me deal just a little better with the situation.

A guy who was on his way to work in the other direction stopped to offer his assistance/eyewitness account (a volunteer firefighter, so he asked about 3 times if my neck and back felt okay, and pointed out that my airbag could be in a less stable state, so be careful). And another lady who was behind me saw this driver take off and tried to follow, and was able to get a partial license plate.

So now I'm late for work, my mood is wrecked (not to mention the trunk of the car), and suddenly I'm stuck paying for all this. Thank God I have a pretty reasonable deductible, and rental car coverage, so at least my cost for paying for a rental isn't too bad, comparatively. Mind you, it's still more than I had planned on shelling out for this type of thing. And with recent other events, my huh-that's-not-an-expense-I'd-planned-on fund is beyond tapped.

So I had this whole rant worked up, and was going to blog that when I got home (with a MUCH-appreciated ride from Princess Katy), but then a phone call from Tiny Police Lady changed it all.

She managed to try the right combination of elements from the various license plate/vehicle descriptions we got, and found the driver.

An 80-year-old lady named Mary.

Now, how do you direct a snarly rant towards an 80-year-old lady? Especially when my family has had the unpleasant task of dealing with a driver who's just gotten too old to drive safely? My own late Grandad had his last stint on the road when he changed lanes into a lane that was still being used. I've had my license for 22 years now, and can't imagine losing that independence now, let alone when I've been self-mobile for several decades.

So I'll bet Mary's family has some words with her as to whether she's really still equipped to be driving herself. I hope they do, anyway. I was wearing my seatbelt, had my foot on my brake, and was a safe distance from the car in front of me. What if I hadn't? What if I'd had my dog in the car, with her nose sticking out the window? What if the car she hit had a tiny teething person in a car seat but gnawing on a rattle? What if......?

So, I'm hoping that she'll take this 2nd opportunity to do the right thing, and take ownership of the mistake, so that her insurance pays for things, and I can be relieved of the deductible and the rental car cost. Does this still affect my premium? Dunno. It'd better not, though I know statistically, the insurance company has to consider whether I've been involved, not necessarily whether I'm at fault.

All I can say is, Mary is DAMN lucky the drum is unharmed. Heaven help her if the Drum Sergeant had to get involved.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Stop the world!

If you felt a big jolt last night, don't worry. It was just the earth screeching to a halt on its axis.


I bought a skirt.

Not because I had to (you know, like for a wedding or special church service), but because I wanted to.

It's cute, and airy, and summery.

For those who don't know me better, this is an occurance that hasn't happened since about 1987, when I bought a really cute mustard yellow skirt mostly because it said it was a size 5, and I was not, but it fit anyway. I wore that skirt with a sleeveless mock turtleneck leotard that made my chest look bigger than it was (I had the non-flabby arms of a 19-year old then......ah, those were the days), and black ballerina flats, imagining myself very artsy as I floated from the dance building to the theatre building to the dorm, before coming back to the theatre building for rehearsal of whatever play I was in that week.

You see, the trouble with my figure is that it's a little short. Not short enough to qualify as "petite" in the eyes of most clothing manufacturers, but short enough to look really stubby when wearing what would be mid-calf on normal women. No capri pants for me. And, as I've been given hips designed for child bearing (regardless of the fact that I'm not certain I'll use them for that purpose), things like mini skirts are right out, as well.

Add in to this the fact that my ancestors didn't know what the sun was, so my alabaster skin (okay, mottled alabaster....stupid freckles) hasn't lent itself to being displayed in public until very recently. Thank goodness for society coming to the realization that deep tans = leather skin later in life. So, after getting ridiculed by a complete stranger for my white legs sometime in college, I have put away shorts and skirts for the most part.

But now, I have a skirt. A cute one. One that can be worn with a simple white t-shirt (hooray!). And one that can be worn with the cute espadrille scuffs I bought the other day (which is another fashion stretch for me, but that's another Mini Mumbling).

I have a skirt.

And I plan to wear it.

In public.

Hold on to something, the earth is fixin' to stop spinning again.

Passionate about getting out of here.... (Vent-i grande, please)

******RANT ALERT******

Pardon me while I vent.

I got a request from a coworker in another state to get a screen capture of something that was only available to people living in Colorado. Since my work machine IP doesn't show me as being in Colorado (though I am, really I am), this meant that I needed to get the screen capture from home. Sure, no problem, I log on at home occasionally.

I did so the other night, did a WHOLE lotta searching around to get the stupid thing to show, got a screen capture and sent it off to her. Since I didn't have my work machine, I sent it from my home e-mail. Then, it was off to bed for me.

As some of you may know, my Yahoo e-mail has an auto-signature that promotes my other business, Passion Parties. Nothing too risque, I don't think. It mentions "passion" and "toys", but doesn't go into detail or anything.

2 days later, I come back from lunch to an e-mail from my boss, with HR cc'd, berating me for "Honestly, what were you thinking?" (that's a quote). Apparently, said coworker took offense to not only the tag line, but the website that you land on when you click on the link. If she was offended at the idea of "passion" or "toys", why on earth did she click to the page where it goes into more detail?? And, as I'm on eggshells right now anyway, this put me over the edge, emotionally. Officially, the call with HR was just to remind me that some things are inappropriate at work.

But wasn't it just as inappropriate for her to open my site, call others to her desk to gawk, then go to my boss, without so much as letting me know that her values were somehow compromised my my effort to make a little more income?

If I thought I could make the mortgage payment by working at Taco Bell or Barnes & Noble, I'd be filling out that generic application form right now. I just can't respect this team as much as I need to, to keep my values and emotions intact.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled Mini Mumblings. Please allow a bit of time for the sense of humour and wit to return. Thank you for your patience.

Monday, June 05, 2006

smart Girl

Last week, the CBB and I went to his hometown of Edmonton, AB, to visit family (and torture them with my lack of left-hand bling), and just relax/hang out. Pretty nice way to spend a week not working, I'd say.

His brother, Jerome was kind enough to schlep us around to various and sundry functions, but -- as happens to the best of us -- he had to go back to work during our last few days there. Oh, I'll bet the Edmonton public transit system would've been just fine, but I jumped at the possibility of driving one of my dream cars.

Called the rental place, confirmed the availability of a single smart car (that's the brand, not just a description), and they sent over their finest (okay, only) shuttle driver to fetch us back to the rental counter.

As we pulled into the lot, I spied the teeny car waiting there for me.

It's lime green! {squeal of joy}

It's a cabriolet!!!!!
{louder squeal of joy, accompanied by a little happy chair dancing}

Yes, friends, I not only got to drive a smart, but got to drive one that was very nearly exactly as I would order it, if a windfall the size of a car payment dropped itself into my lap.

Oh, it's cute, alright. And fun to drive, as well. This was one of the sportier models, and had tiptronic shifting, with the option of using the wheel-mounted paddles to not have to move your hands from 10 and 2.

Ya know, it doesn't feel nearly as small inside as it looks from the outside. We even managed to get all our luggage and shopping inside, to get ourselves to the airport. Okay, it took the type of spatial arranging skills that led me to conquer Tetris, but we did it!

So, now I have more reasons to love these little guys. Cute, fuel-efficient, and FUN! And yes, they're safe. And yes, they can go highway speeds. Sheesh. These things are all over the place in Europe, where they are also known to care about safety and speed.

But with my limit of 2 carry-ons already in-hand, I had to give up the keys to the smart to the nice lady at the Budget counter. If I got creative, though, I might be able to fit it in the overhead bin.....