Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Too much moving

Well, that's what someone said to me today about this blog lately, and I have to agree on more than one level. I'm sick to death of dealing with moving stuff, and I'm sick to death of moving around all the time. It would be nice to settle down in one place for a while, but I just don't see that happening anytime soon what with my wanting to travel and live all over the world. So hopefully this will be the last moving post for a while, and so I'm going to spill everything out here.

After having secured the new place and arranged all the utilities, I decided to enjoy myself for a change and went to happy hour with some friends on Wednesday for some beers, LOST, and burgers, not necessarily in that order. It was a nice night; it even snowed a little which was really lovely. So I arrive home after this lovely evening to find that it's raining in my kitchen. Yep, there are at least 8 constant drips from the ceiling, including from the ceiling fan (good thing there wasn't a light in there turned on). As it was going on 11:30 pm, I deemed it just a wee bit too late to be calling the Bastard Landlord, so I positioned various bowls and receptacles around, wiped up the water with towels, and went to bed praying the ceiling wouldn't cave in.

Prime Rib Day arrived and I kindly waited until 9 am to call Bastard Landlord. He came over, looked around upstairs, came down and look at our kitchen and said, "Oh yes, the carpenters accidentally put a nail through a pipe yesterday and blew out the wall upstairs with the water bursting out. This must have been the rest of the water trapped between the walls seeping out." Basically, nothing we could do but continue emptying all the bowls and hope the sky didn't fall on us. Very nice. Thank God we're outta here, I'm thinking.

Picked up prime rib dinner and pies and booze for PR Day, fixed everything up, had lovely buzzed day eating and drinking with the Cuz, took a nap, then decided I was too lazy to get ready to go to drag karaoke so ended up watching crap tv.

The rest of the weekend was meant to be packing for Monday's move, which didn't get done at all, of course. Because packing ahead of time would just be silly, and just doesn't fit in with my tradition at all. You see, I've moved about 1,036,592 times and I know for a fact that packing ahead of time is really just a waste of time when you can just put together a few boxes, throw random shit in the box (making sure each box contains random shit from only one room), throw your clothes in large black trash bags (the strong kind, Hefty, preferably), leave your hanging clothes as they are, and generally toss all the stuff you don't want in one corner to be thrown out later.

Monday rolled around and we didn't even pick up the excessively crappy U-Haul truck until noon (oops). And once again, of course, none of our supposed help showed. Why should we expect this move to be any different, I ask you? Fuckers. But I digress. So the Cuz and I moved everything, EVERYTHING, ourselves yet again.

I have to admit I could have had just a bit more foresight in one aspect of the move. With regard to The Sofa. Now, I've had this sofa for about 5 years. I got it and the companion chair and a set of coffee table and end tables from a friend in San Diego for the grand total of $300, and it's oh so comfortable. Yes, it's getting dirty and Buca has shredded the arms of The Sofa and the chair, but I so love them and I'm just going to get some slipcovers for them (really, I am, soon, I swear). So I was more than a tad bit upset when, at 7 pm, we were having a little trouble fitting The Sofa through the front door. See, the arms are very rounded and have an elegant shape, but really are not so conducive to moving through rather more narrow doors than I've had before. We tried and tried and tried to wedge and lever it through every which way for about 45 minutes, then a neighbor came to help and we tried and tried and tried again. We decided that what we really needed to do was wait for our new landlord to come home so we could open his door up (he lives just across the hall, still not sure how that's going to pan out) and have more room to lever The Sofa through. We left The Sofa sitting on end on the landing between our apartments, which was quite the picture, let me just tell you. We continued to bring in whatever would fit through the narrow opening provided between The Sofa and the door and waited for New Landlord to come home.

Here's where the Saga of The Sofa gets funny. Even after New Landlord got home and opened his door, we still couldn't get The Sofa through the door, not even with his help. The wooden legs on it were getting in the way. So we just chopped them off with his saw. Yep. Chopped. Them. Off. So now The Sofa sits about 4 inches lower than it did. It looks pretty funny, like a Japanese sofa or something.

So in the end we did get everything in. The Cuz was over at the old place today to get the few remaining things out, and did a quick general sweep. Which I think is more than that place deserves considering a) Bastard Landlord is going to have to rip the whole place apart to get it into a condition that anyone would even think about buying the place and b) we have evidence that he has been inside the apartment BEFORE we have transferred the control of the premises back to him, which is highly illegal under landlord-tenant law in this state.

And last night I went and bought a big new tv for the living room, and I ordered a beautiful new comforter set for my bedroom online. Now we have to unpack all our crap (remember throwing random shit from only one room into each box? Perhaps marking the boxes might have been a good idea, too.), I mean, belongings, organize, and decide on paint colors for the rooms. Wheeeee! I get to paint and play designer! I'm so excited!

PS - The fucktards at the local gas utility turned OFF the gas on the very day that I had set it up for INITIATION. So we have no hot water and can't cook until sometime tomorrow. Cold showers suck ass.

PPS - Someone also requested more sex and drama. The Cuz thinks New Landlord is hot and might swing that way. I told her in no uncertain terms that she is NOT allowed to fuck New Landlord. I'll keep you all posted on that one, I don't trust her one iota.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Another year, another address, another phone number

Well, that's not strictly true. I didn't have a landline at our current residence.

So I've done all the mundane things like set up the electricity, gas, cable and phone accounts, reserved the U-Haul for Monday, arranged to go over early on Friday and sign the leases and rider addendum, turn over a stash of cash (ouch!), and get the keys. I know I'm forgetting something, though, but I can't remember what. Hmmm, that's probably redundant, right?

Eureka! That's what it was. I forgot to get boxes from office services. My man Roscoe was kind enough to let me save a bunch of boxes from sure destruction by the evil trash people until Saturday. I'm hoping that they, along with probably 200 strong black trashbags will be enough to move all of our belongings.

Okay, so utilities: Check. Moving truck: Check. Boxes: Check (good thing I never unpacked my books. Hey, it wasn't my fault, really. I just never had the money to buy bookcases to unpack them into!) What else are we missing?

Ah, yes, movers. Well, apparently we've got half the transy/drag population of DC helping us. It's the best of both worlds, really. The strength of men, the style sense of a woman. Means I won't have to be directing them where to put all the furniture.

Yesterday, a guy I work with was cautioning me about not straining myself in the move, because he helped someone move a couple weeks ago and was seriously sore for the next few days. We were e-mailing all this back and forth. I'll see if I can c&p it in here for your viewing pleasure. You'll have to read it backwards, because that's just the way it is.

From: Coworker
To: Y
OK, I laughed out loud at both paragraphs!
Who says [taking advantage of] chivalry is dead?
From: Y
To: Coworker
Subject: RE: Monday, Nov. 28
Pah, to equal rights. I'm a nice southern girl and no self-respecting man would ever let a southern lady do anything that could result in her breaking a sweat or a nail.
Besides, my cuz and I moved every damn bit of it ourselves last time and I'm just not going through that again. If I can find stupid men with muscles to lift heavy things, I would be stupid to do it myself.
From: Coworker
Sent: Tuesday, November 22, 2005 4:38 PM
To: Y
Subject: RE: Monday, Nov. 28
Hmmm… I don't know. I would guess yes since there other tenants in the building will probably be here.
Hey! Equal rights!
From: Y
Sent: Tuesday, November 22, 2005 4:36 PM
To: Coworker
Subject: RE: Monday, Nov. 28
Ah, really? Is there air/heat here on Friday? If I have time and energy, I was thinking of coming in, at least to try to pick up some boxes from office services.
PS - I'm the girl, I'm not lifting a damn thing!
From: Coworker
Sent: Tuesday, November 22, 2005 4:35 PM
To: Y
Subject: RE: Monday, Nov. 28
Urg -- moving day. Lift carefully!
And happy t-day -- I'll likely be out tomorrow.
From: Y
Sent: Tuesday, November 22, 2005 1:04 PM
To: Coworker
Subject: Monday, Nov. 28
Hey, we found an apartment but the only time we can get helping hands to lift stuff is next Monday, so I'll need to be off at least half the day, probably the whole day, if that's ok.

You know, I was pretty damn witty there, if I do say so myself. I was feeling very Dorothy Parker-ish. There are certainly worse things to feel.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

And for my next trick, watch me pull a rabbit out of my ass!

We did it. We got the apartment. We move on Monday, and hopefully can get the keys this Friday and start moving small stuff this weekend and just have the larger furniture to go on Monday in one trip in a small rental moving truck.

Unfuckingbelievable. I have no idea how I did it. Craigslist was the start. Looking in the sublets/temporary just on the off chance there might be something. Coming across a 2 BR for LESS than we pay now. In a decent location. IN the city. With off-street parking. Free wireless broadband internet. Walls that can be painted. Two Ikea wardrobes included in my room. All new stainless steel kitchen with granite counters, double sink. Washer/dryer. Separate entrance for the Cuz.

How? Just how on God's green earth did we manage to find the owner/landlord who DIDN'T ask for the prior landlord's reference? Who didn't order his own credit reports but accepted ours? How?

I don't really care, I'm just so excited. Like, over the moon excited. Like, I can finally stop shaking like a leaf from all the anxiety and the fear that I'll be literally homeless and have to give my beloved cats to the shelter because I have nowhere for them. Like, I'll be able to sleep at night again. (Well, that is if Buca will let me and stop waking me up at 15-30 minute intervals between 2:30 am and wake up time.)

I figure it's either divine providence, or I'm becoming something of a magician by necessity. It's your call.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Ring of Fire

With a nod to Johnny Cash and the movie "Walk the Line" that came out this past weekend (man, is Joaquin Phoenix hot or what?!):

Please, somebody, the next time I decide I want to get spicy food with jalapeno peppers and other chiles in it for lunch, just say these three words to me: Ring of Fire.

'nuff said there. Obligatory poo post for the month.

Wish me luck

I'm preparing to scan and e-mail our applications for a new apartment, along with our credit reports and pay stubs, to the owner/landlord. I have to figure out a way to concoct a well-worded e-mail that can describe our predicament (shitty credit) in a way that reassures the guy that we can and will pay our rent, and also let him know that we have not only the deposit and 1st month's rent ready, but are able and willing to provide additionally 2nd month's rent in advance, and quite possibly 3rd month's rent in advance.

God, I want this place. It's actually in the city, although closer to the Maryland line than I'd prefer, but I'm not exactly sure of the neighborhood. I haven't seen it in the daylight yet - might have to take a trip there Thursday. But it's in a small building, only 4 units, one of which is the owner's. The other two units are inhabited by little old ladies (read: quiet). Some walls are already painted, so I'm sure he'd have no problem with us painting more. The master bedroom comes with a smallish closet (at least this one has space for a little table for a lamp to see by) and 2 Ikea wardrobes (the thin ones, but still!). If you know me, you know how important these are to me. The bathroom actually has that new-fangled stuff called ventilation (!) (read: no mold) and a sink with actual cabinet underneath to store things. The kitchen is painted and has all new stainless steel appliances (hello, my lovely subzero freezer/refrigerator, I've been looking for you for so long). Granted, it's kind of a walk thru kitchen, but does have room enough for my kitchen cart, so we could use that for a small table. The second bedroom is on the other end of the kitchen, is carpeted, and has its own closet AND exterior entrance, so the Cuz won't be waking me up at 5 am coming home from work. The living room is ample, with a coat closet that will fit the cat litterbox perfectly. Might need to get a coat stand, though. And it has a kind of shelves already mounted along one wall, so could display stuff there and store mail, etc. There is off-street parking for Bianca (yes, I've named my car, get over it already) and a backyard with a deck. There's also a small landing off the second bedroom. God, I've already got the floorplan in my head for the furniture, how badly do I want this place? And . . . and . . . and, WIRELESS BROADBAND is included in the rent!!! (C'mon, now, that really did deserve all 3 exclamation points, don't you think?)

Speaking of Bianca, bad news. On the way home from viewing the new place (thinking positive here), we ended up with a flat tire. Yes, the $5 hick midnight special is no more. (If you don't know the story, just ask and I'll recount it soon.) And then, as if that weren't enough, the clutch finally went out. The good news is that, thanks to my new best friends over at, I found a great mechanic and the clutch came in at just over $600 in less than 24 hours. The tire is getting replaced by the Cuz this afternoon - should be less than $50. And now, she'll be almost as good as new, what with the new brakes that got done a month or so ago.

Thanksgiving this year means PRIME RIB, baby! Since we won't have time to go home this year, I figured we could just order one of those full turkey dinners from the grocery store or Boston Market or whatever. Hmmmm. Might have wanted to do that last week, because they were completely sold out when I called today. All of them. (What's up with that? Doesn't anybody cook anymore? Sheesh.) So for an additional $10, we'll be feasting on a new tradition of prime rib, potatoes au gratin, some kind of green beans, a sweet potato dish that I'll make, dinner rolls, and probably a store-bought pie (unless I'm feeling particularly domestic on Thursday). Good thing I love beef because I think we'll have a lot of it. Must remember horseradish, too . . .

Apologies for all the parenthetical phrases today, my mind is working a bit overtime.

And I've changed the template for a while, just for something soothing to calm the rampant anxiety that consumes me during my waking hours these days. Please tell me things will get better, somehow, some way, because I really can't take this much longer before I crack. Oops, might have already started, must go check . . .

PS - I've also changed the comments so you don't have to log into blogger (by request, you know who you are, missy!), but I will still be moderating and deleting any that I find offensive or spam. Because I can. Ha!

Monday, November 14, 2005

Here We Go Again

AKA The Search Is On.

We came up with all the money for the landlord in the end. Then he called yesterday afternoon and told us that he'd contacted our employers and references, but after reviewing everything he'd decided to terminate our lease and basically evict us. Fucking hell. No idea when they'll post the notice, but from that date, we have 10 days.

So now we're on the search for the impossible: a 2 or 3 bedroom place that a) will take small furry beings, b) is close to bus or Metro lines, c) has off-street parking for the slightly less than legal car of mine, and d) landlords who either won't do a credit check, or won't really care that much about our beyond shitty credit once they've got our thousands of dollars in their hot hands. I don't know if we can do it again. We found this place through a stroke of luck, and he didn't run credit checks on us. Oh, that reminds me, we'll have to get somebody to lie for us and pretend to be our landlord so we'll get a decent reference. Again, fucking hell.

I'm trying to look at the positives of the situation. The place we're in now really isn't the most convenient for public transportation. It's there, but sometimes massively inconvenient. The place also needs a complete overhaul. Seriously, the linoleum in the bathroom is covering holes in the subfloor. The bathroom has no ventilation, hell, the entire place has no ventilation, leading to problems with mold. The kitchen has so little counter space that it's hard to chop things up and cook. Oh, yeah, there are holes under the linoleum in there, too. My cell phone doesn't get reception in the house; I have to go outside on the carport to use it. Not so bad in the summer, but really not fun in the deep freeze that is January here. So we get to look for a place that's actually IN the city - finally, I'll have a DC address. We get to find a nice, new place with public transportation closer by.

On another note, we have taken in a pair of homeless young gentlemen. They just came out to their families a couple months ago, to which their families responded by kicking them out. They need a place to stay, we need money. So they can stay with us until they get their feet back under them (a few months) and we get help on the rent and bills. We are also looking at 3 bedroom places with a view to them being our roommates long term. Dunno how that'll turn out. But they are really sweet kids and very funny. They actually work at the same place as the Cuz, so that makes it all very convenient in terms of getting to work and home, and we know they're employed and when they get their checks.

Anyway, that's the update for today. I've got to go and do some more searches for apartments.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Weird Friday

Every day when I walk to the bus stop, I walk past an old long-term stay hotel that's being turned into condos. And every day, the workers over there yell something at me. Usually it's either something in Spanish that I don't know (because I can do Spanglish, but not Spanish), or something like "Hey, mamacita, don't you wanna come over here and getchu somma this?" Well, today was different. Today they yelled, "Hey, Beautiful!" No whistles even. I'm a bit worried that they might be starting to respect me.

So I'm waiting for the bus, and there are 3 other people waiting as well. Two buses stop here; I take Bus #1, which goes straight downtown to where I work, and Bus #2, which goes to the nearest Metro station west of me. Bus #2 comes along, and the other 3 people get on. I think to myself, Well, shouldn't be long now, #2 is supposed to be here a couple minutes before #1. So I wait. And I wait. And I wait some more. I look at my watch, and notice I've now been waiting 20 minutes and realize that this bus is probably not coming, which does happen sometimes for unknown reasons (fucking Metrobus, I hate them sometimes).

So I cross the street and go to the bus stop to wait for the #2 bus going the opposite way, which should be the next bus along in about 10 minutes. And I wait. And I wait. And an attractive young gentleman comes along. And we wait. And we wait. And about 25 minutes later we are wondering where the hell our bus is. He finally gives up and calls a cab, and offers to share it with me. Well, unfortunately, because today was payday, I had about a dollar and change in my wallet because all my pay goes direct deposit to my Visa. So I tell him this, and he says never mind the money, and I get a free ride to the Metro! Yay for cute boys!

BTW, all this bus shenanigans - because it's Veterans' Day here in the US. All our public transportation in DC was running on a Saturday schedule, therefore my normal bus didn't run at all. Bastards. Of course, I could have been smart enough to look it up or even realize it yesterday, but NO, not me. I swear I'm becoming a flake in my advancing years.

Well, on the home front, I figure I'm about $200 short after Cuz gets her paycheck tomorrow. That's including paying just enough of the electric bill to keep it on, and just enough cash to get us just enough food to get by just until I get paid again next week.

And here's the deal with the landlord, for those who really want to know (might as well come clean). He took us to court and got a judgment against us for past due rent, even though I had proposed a payment arrangement with him the night before that he had seemed to agree to. So when we got outside the courtroom, we talked some more about it, and he wasn't ready to say whether he was going to agree or not, that he needed some more assurance that we could really come up with the money, that he wanted us to fill out the rental application again with current phone numbers and employers, but that he wasn't going to sic the sheriff on us just yet. Or at least that's what we think. So we filled it all out, and on Monday, I faxed it over to him, along with a copy of my last paystub and a copy of my last timesheet showing beaucoup hours, hopefully proving to him that we could, indeed, come up with it. Haven't heard a thing from him since.

In the meantime, I've been working my ass off, not spending any more money than I have to, and wracking my brain for ways to come up with more money. I have nothing to sell, no way to make anything extra, nobody to ask for a loan. I'm really at a loss. So if you want to contribute to a worthwhile charity, feel free to send me your extra change.

Monday, November 07, 2005

And one more thing

Anyone have any idea how I can come up with $300 in a week? I mean, not from my job, because the work period for this Friday's pay is already over (60 hours for me). I don't have anything worth selling. I work late every night so a part-time job is not an option. I also am working this weekend, which makes next Friday's pay very healthy, but doesn't help me for next Monday, when I need to have a bit over $1300. I've already got most of it covered with my pay, but need another bit plus some to feed the little furry monsters. And me.

I'm wondering about a night job panhandling. Does anyone have any experience with this?

Please deposit any and all ideas in the comments box. Thanks muchly.

I'm It!

Okay, so I got tagged in one of those bloggy-type things. Gee, thanks, I think. Only now I have to come up with 5 random things about myself. This is sad. I can't even think of 5 random things about myself. I should have someone else do it. Any takers?

C'mon, you know you want to do it.


Fine, then. Hrmpf. Five random things about me:

1. I have a finger that will not straighten. It's the index finger on my left hand. I badly, really badly, dislocated it about 4 years ago when, in a drunken state, I thought I could go under a parking gate instead of over. Not so much. Had to be taken to the emergency room where they were very impressed and straightened it out for me and put on a very fashionable splint. (Well, it was fashionable after I started wearing anyway, I'm a trendsetter, you know.) But I did save the wine bottles from being broken!

2. In another fabulous drunken state, I managed to fracture a bone in the ankle joint. Walked on it for 2 weeks (!) before going to the doctor. But guess what? A walking cast will get you free drinks and a handicapped parking thingiemajig for rock star parking for 6 weeks. If you're me, anyway.

3. I've been fired twice. Not counting all those restaurant jobs that I just no-showed because I got tired of them. Hey, I was young!

4. Both of my parents have died and I still miss them every single day.

5. My birthday was October 27 and I turned 35. And worked 12+ hours, too. What a sucky birthday.

So okay, there's 5 random things. You know what's really sad? I don't even know 5 other bloggers to tag now, because all the bloggers I know have been tagged already!

Struggle . . . and apologies

Apologies to all who keep checking in here. I know how frustrating it is when you want to get updated on what's going on with someone and they just aren't posting. It's just that life has been really, really shitty, possibly shittier than it has ever been, and I just haven't been able to find the strength to come here and post about what's been going on.

It's also that I find myself thinking about how honest do I want to be here. Not that anything posted is untrue, but how open do I want to be would perhaps be a better way to put it. How much of myself do I want to put out there? How much do I want people to know about me and my life? Do I want people to know how bad it is right now? Would it help to get it out? Maybe. I read a number of other blogs and there are a few where people put it all on the line, every ounce of pain and anguish, heartbreak and despair, every shitty thing that happens to them no matter how unpleasant it makes them look.

Am I that honest? No. I don't think I can do it. It scares me to be that open.

So in the meantime just let me say that things right now are really shitty and I may very soon be homeless with nowhere to go. There's your update.