Tuesday, August 22, 2006

His Little Puny Brain is No Match for the Siren-Like Call of the Leather Upholstery

Oh man. I came home last night and my step-dad said my cats have to go. Apparently, f0rtun@to my cuddly wuddly perfect dood has been sharpening his claws on the leather sofa. Unfortunately, I am not the only human in my cats' lives right now so my discipline alone cannot make up for my parents' complete lack of discipline and initiative to cat-proof the house. I know leather is fort's kryptonite. He is perfect but for his penchant to dig his claws into it's supple surface (and to chew on plants until he pukes, but that is easily cleaned with a little resolve or a paper towel). I should know. I have gone through many a pleather legal portofolios and even one coach purse in the name of this weakness. Under my sole watch he did not scratch the non-leather (or cheaper imitation fabric) furniture as long as a launching pad (a kitty toy with a ball in a circular track surrounding a corrugated cardboard center) is nearby. Once in a blue moon I'd catch him start to claw something he's not supposed to and I scoop him up and put him on the pad and he gets the point. I have a launching pad next to the sofa and I naively and wrongly thought this was enough to keep him from scratching it. More needed to be done to prevent fort from scratching a leather sofa.

But Bar' ain't doin' none of this. He doesn't understand that animals need people to define their limits. We need to use their instincts and their limitations in order to manipulate them into behaving. Telling the cat it's s.o.l. and has to move out because it scratched the sofa isn't going to keep the cat from scratching the sofa. But keeping him out of the room with the lucious leather will keep him from scratching the sofa and it's as easy as keeping the door to the living room closed when no one's home and letting fort in and out of the laundry room instead of the living room doors so he no longer even cares to go in that room if the door is left open. I don't even mind keeping him in my bedroom all day because he just sleeps all day anyway. If keeping him out of the room was impossible I could take a more disciplined approach. For instance, when I first broke in my cat @nn@belle, whom I rescued from the hard cold streets of ghetto Tremont, she liked to claw my mattress but I broke her of the habit with a handy spray bottle of cold water. To keep fort from scratching the leather, as soon as I was aware he was up to that, I needed to watch him in that room and anytime he came near the leather with the glint in his eye I would have to give him a squirt.

I suppose this is really what bothers me. B@rry waited until the last second to tell me about the problem and instead of allowing me to try to fix it (when we could have been preventing it to begin with) his solution is to throw us out. This is how it always is with him and my mom. They deny deny deny ignore ignore ignore until something becomes intolerable and then they freak out about the consequences of their denial and willful ignorance. If they knew he was scratching the couch they should have told me from day one and we could have worked something out to prevent the problem from escalating. It's not like this happened because I didn't care or let him do it. I didn't know he was until last night (I'm not up on the status of parts of my parents' furniture and it's not like they take equisite care of things themselves such that some scratch marks would appear blatantly to be my cat's fault).

Yes, I know. I am taking my cat's side in all of this and yes, I'm making a few excuses. I do feel bad about it. I really do. I know that I am partly to blame, if not mostly, because I should have paid more attention and should have recognized the potential for this problem to arise. However, it is so frustrating because if I knew the problem was to this extent I assure you, dear readers, that I care enough about not rushing the move out, and my cats' well-being, and my parents' ability to tolerate us while we're there that I would have taken all possible measures to prevent the problem. And this is just the kind of thing that frustrates me to no end about living there.

Monday, August 21, 2006

First the 30-34 Age Group. Next the WORLD!

Man, work was busy today. I was busy doing busy work like compiling documents to fed ex and typing certified mail certificates. These are the times I wish I worked at a big law firm so I could delegate this crap to my secretary and then take out my frustrations on her by screaming at her for not putting a comma in the right place instead of having to overuse the correction tape on the typewriter when I do it all myself. No, actually, if I worked in a big law firm the secretaries would all be my friends and I would hate all the other lawyers because most big firm lawyers are annoying as shit and have egos the size of alaska to accomodate their shortcomings in the personality department among other things. Nah. I'll use the typewriter myself and not have to deal with those turds. Oh, and I'll gladly do this and skip the whole 100 hour work weeks too, thank you very much.

Yeah, but things are getting kind of exciting. I have to go to a bland midwestern state capital to argue before its department of revenue next week. It is my very first business trip and my very first case and I am very excited about it. I get to dress up in my suit and talk with my edjumacated girl accent and pretend like I know what I'm talking about--which I do but it's funny to think of me as a little dirty tom-boyish raggamuffin child all grown up wearing suits and arguing before a department of revenue. It seems like just yesterday I was bemoaning my velveeta and ketchup sandwich and thermos full of water in the grade school cafeteria and now look at me. I wear suits and eat real cheese! I've certainly moved up in the world.

Speaking of getting a leg up, let's talk about running, shall we? I always assume that all my non-running friends must find running talk incredibly boring. I might as well talk about stamp collecting or my favorite episode of Sanford and Son to y'all, I know. But bear with me, please. I swear running holds the keys to happiness and one day I will become articulate enough to prove it. Anyway, let me just take this moment to brag that mrp and I each won our respective age group yesterday for that 10-mile race we ran. He was the boy 30-34 champ and I was the girl 30-34 champ (does anyone else find it scary that I refer to us as girl and boy and our real disgustingly elderly ages in the same breath?) Of course he ran WAY better than me even given the gender handicap, but it felt really good to be able to share in the cheesy community road race honors like that. And now we have matching giant commemorative award-winner mugs. Cheers to that!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Loved Legs and Unloved Lungs

Woo. My legs are sleepy. Not pins and needles sleepy. Just tuckered out from lots of running and not enough actual REM sleeping. I ran my first 20 miler on Sunday and I'm cruising toward the end of my first 60 mile week. Luckily the rest of the week is filled with short easy runs of 8 and 6 miles respectively so my legs can rest up. They must because they will be in demand on Sunday as I attempt to race 10 miles. If I wasn't in the midst of marathon training I think I could do pretty well and I am going to try like the dickens to meet my time goal. I'm not making any pre-excuse-needing excuses, but I realize it will be more difficult to meet my goals since I've worked my lower limbs quite a bit lately. Oh, and my lung is all f-ed up. That tends not to help. But generally the running is going well and I'm having a blast doing it. Lately I've been thinking about how fun it is and how much I love it and usually can't wait to get out there and go go go. Even at the track I catch myself smiling and telling myself that this is what it's all about so don't even think of backing off--get going, self, and make your time goal. So actually, this sleepy leg feeling feels pretty darn good.

But getting back to my lung, it has been acting up the last few days. I think it might be a hydration issue. I hope so. I hope I am not aggravating with my aggressive athletic behavior. I ran at lunch today so I am going to go home early and take it easy and maybe go to sleep at like 10 and get 8 hours for a change. That would be nice. I look forward to not having to feel like I have to hold my guts in when I laugh or wince an agonizing wince when I get out of the car.

Yeah, this post is boring. Sorry. I am in the midst of doing something I actually like to do at work so I really haven't spent the entire day reflecting on myself. Just half the day.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Because I'm Cheap and Everybody's Doing It

1.) First name? Laura
2.) Named after? Petrarch's Laura? The Laura in Dr. Zhivago? Ingalls? Branigan? I'm not sure. But my dad picked the name.
3.) When did you cry last? People, do you even have to ask? Yesterday because I'm stressed the hell out.
4.) Your handwriting? Also difficult, but not as difficult (as Mitzi).
5.) Favorite lunch meat? The concept of lunch meat is disgusting. I do like turkey because it is the least lunch meaty lunch meat.
6.) Kids? Definitely hope to have one one of these days.
7.) If you were another person would you be friends with you? Hell yes. I like hanging out with me and I give good advice (I just don't take it well).
8.) Do you have a journal ? A blog.
9.) Do you use sarcasm a lot? No, not me.
10.) Tonsils? Definitely my favorite body part.
11.) Would you bungee jump? I'm a huge wuss when it comes to flirting with pain and death so the answer is probably no but sometimes I surprise myself with my daring-do so perhaps yes.
12.) Favorite cereal? Soggy Life.
13.) Do you untie your shoes when you take them off ? I'm impatient so no.
14.) Do you think you are strong? Yes although sometimes it doesn't appear that way but I really know I am.
15.) Favorite ice cream? chocolate malt caramel at Handels
16.) Shoe size? 8.5
17.) Red or Pink? Definitely red, but I do like pink in all its various shades.
18.) Least favorite thing about yourself? The fact that I'm an impatient freaked out stress case.
19.) Who do you miss the most? Steve.
20.) Do you want everyone to send this back to you? Yes.
21.) What color pants and shoes are you wearing? Khaki pants and pinkish shoes.
22.) Last thing you ate? Trail mix in the car on the way to work
23.) What are you listening to now? The Shins on my ipod.
24.) If you were a crayon what color would you be? Plum or Midnight.
25.) Favorite smell? Hyacinths (also mrp's milky smell, but that answer is blog only).
26.) Last person you talked to on the phone? My new tenant.
27.) The first thing you notice about people you are attracted to? The little things that make them a unique character.
28.) Do you like this person who sent you this? Sort of. Ok, yeah I guess so. YES. (it was my Aunt Mitzi)
29.) Favorite drink? Definitely margueritas on the rocks with salt. But it has to be a good one with fresh limes to qualify as my favorite.
30.) Favorite sport? Running to play and probably college basketball to watch.
31.) Hair color? Brown as a bear.
32.) Eye color? Greyish/bluish/greenish/some light colored hazely shade
33.) Do you wear contacts? No. And not glasses either. Somehow I got the recessive good eye genes.
34.) Favorite food? God, this depends. Sushi, French apple pie, homemade pancakes.
35.) Scary movie or happy ending? Yeah, the choice here it too limited. I like my movies like I like my people: one that you can't put in a neat little category.
36.) Last movie you watched? Um, hmmm. I really can't remember. The last movie I saw in the theater was Syriana, I think.
37.) What color shirt are you wearing? A pink blouse.
38.) Summer or Winter? I have to say summer but winter has its charm
39.) Hugs or kisses? Lots of both.
40.) Favorite desert? French apple pie.
41.) Who is most likely to respond? I don't know?
42.) Who is least likely to respond? Hmmm. Don't know.
43.) What books are you reading? Whereever You Go There You Are by Jon Kabat-Zinn (but I haven't picked it up in about a month because when I lay down I sleep these days).
44.) What's on your mousepad? I actually don't have one.
45.) What did you watch on tv last night? Um, this is so pathetic but I watched Wifeswap as I ate ginger snaps and stretched. I love it though when the families actually learn from someone so different from them and become more open minded. It brings a little tear to my eye.
46.) Favorite sounds? Little kids laughing, trains in the distance, kitty purrs, hearing myself talk.
47.) Stones or beatles? That's tough. I like both for different reasons.
48.) The farthest you've been from home? Paraguay or Hungary
49.) Do you have a special talent? I can touch my nose with my tongue and I can self-analyze in circles.
50.) Where were you born and when? Willoughby, OH on Sunday May 18, 1975 at 8:49 AM. I'm still a morning person.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Oh Yeah, and I Have Pleurisy

As if I need to follow-up that title. Heh, that last post was all serious and actually very purposeful. I needed to remind myself of all that to plug on and not act a fool because I feel a little bit down and a little bit antsy about it today.

But yes, back to the pleurisy. No, not scurvy or small pox or shingles. Pleurisy. It just sounds so poor drunken sap living in a 19th century lower east side tenement. Pleurisy. And Lebron had it! Woo.

So, let me tell you the exciting story of my path to Pleurisy diagnosis. A couple of weeks ago I started feeling a mild tightness in my side. It is almost the exact same feeling I get when I get a side stitch only I felt it when I wasn't running. It was fairly constant, but fairly mild and I chalked it up to having performed a cart wheel a week before when I'm old and too brittle to perform such acts of acrobatic awesomeness. Anyway, things were fine, but I started to notice that I couldn't sleep on my right side without my side hurting. No big deal. Then I started to notice I was feeling uncomfortable quite frequently. "Stop being a baby" I told myself. But then Friday night while I was walking to my car after work I was in pretty intense pain. I thought maybe it was just a muscle spasm or something. It simmered down a lot an hour and a couple of margaritas later. Whatever.

The next morning I woke up IN AGONY! Seriously. On a scale of 1-10 it was a 900. Ok, a 7 or 8. But really. It sucked. I called my doctor's office and the nurse said I could go to a walk-in clinic or the emergency room and suggested the emergency room since the clinic wouldn't be able to perform all the tests I would likely need. "I haven't been knifed and it's not like I've fallen and can't get up," I thought, "I'm not going to no emergency room." (And I ended the thought with a "girl" said as if I wasn't raised in a cracker household for effect too, just so you know). I went to the clinic and fat Dr Shah and his Indian accent concluded that he didn't know what the problem was and that I should go to the emergency room. I said thanks, but my limbs are still attached I'll just go home and it will probably feel better after I run. So I went and winced home, put on my running clothes, and headed out the door. I ran 1 mile, thank you very much. I came home and started sobbing my side hurt so bad. Mrp called. The connection was bad. And then I called him back. The call was dropped. Then he called me back. I was stubborn. Then he called me back one more time and before you know it we're sitting in the ER with obese homeless hypochondriacs ironically watching the Iron Man on tv.

Four hours later they called me back and made me get into some sexy backless hospital couture and I took a nice nap while the nurses talked about stupid crap outside my room. Sometime later Dawn woke me up and proceeded to take half my blood and replace it with Saline. Yes, picture me lying in a hospital bed in a green hospital gown bundled in a sheet with an iv drip. I know. Then Shelly came and wheeled me like this down the hall and passed the corpse of Mr. Burns (I swear) and to the ultra sound room. I got to see my pancreas and my liver, y'all! I regretted asking Shelly if I had scerosis because we ended up laughing so hard that I started experiencing a 9. Anyway, back Shelly pushed me in my flying bed and I waited and waited and waited for the results. I illegally texted mrp and he came in and hung out with me and we made fun of the hospital and speculated about our homeless waiting room buddies. It was almost fun in a surreal and pathetic me kind of way. I felt bad for poor mrp wasting such a gorgeous day for wussy old me, but I was also so grateful because I think I would really have cried the whole time if I was there by myself. Anyway, after a long time finally Dawn came back and told me I am not with child and then came back with a paper that said I was seen by a doctor who I never met that said I had Pleurisy and to take 3 ibuprofens and rest more. The end.