Archive for March, 2008


Today I’m filing disputes with the bank over several transactions on my account that are not mine but were made with my debit card number – not the actual card because I have that in my possession. The worst was a $3000 charge to Apple Online. It nearly seems plausible since we buy Apple products, but it still wasn’t me.
I have evidently been the victim of identity theft and am now leery of making purchases online thanks to the condescending redundancy of the customer service prick at the bank. I may never get a good deal on a textbook again if my only option is face-to-face purchases at the university book center. Alas, that perceived good deal online might not be so good if several months later I’m being relieved of three grand by some scam artist who stole my credit card number.
In unrelated news, today the mail brought a Playboy clothing (and other naughty products) catalog to my house. It’s apparently considered non-offensive since it wasn’t shrink-wrapped and hiding in brown paper, but I still don’t want my kids accidently flipping through it since there is a page displaying all the covers of the other magazines Playboy has for sale which are definitely inappropriate for, well, just about anyone. Even the thumbnail pictures of the covers were shocking.
I was curious whether this was one of those mass mailings simply addressed to “Resident” and then my address because that seemed the only reasonable explanation why I would get something like this. Of course I laughed when I flipped it over and discovered it’s addressed to my brother-in-law.
EDITED: And it’s freaking snowing – big fluffy flakes sticking to the yard again. WTF?

Read Full Post »

Death by Assimilation

There must have been something fundamentally shallow, sparkly, and affected missing from my adolescent pop cultural experience. As a late-twenty-somethings adult, I find myself curiously drawn to the Disney channel, even at 2:30 in the afternoon when my kids are deep in cozy nap time. I become hypnotized by the purples and pinks and glittery makeup and teenage superficial love affairs. Walls painted in unrealistic cartoony colors; vapid characters and dialogue; embarrassing pseudo morality lessons. I mean, you’ve seen it.
I’m casting about for somewhere to place blame for my jaunt through the airway slums, and I keep snagging the only possible cause: No cable – then or now. The truth is, I simply have no choice. I’ve methodically worked my way through all the loaner DVDs from friends whose entertainment tastes I envy and am now anxiously awaiting a refresher load. Today, even my backup Netflix disc was a bust, um, literally. Something had sawed it right in half.
I’ve managed to retain a modicum of self-respect as I haven’t tested the worlds of amnesia, demon-possession, resurrected previously unknown siblings, and I don’t know what-all kinds of devices รก la the Day Time Soaps. Good for me.
In the meantime, Disney is poisoning me.

Read Full Post »

Slow Slow Quick-Quick

Anne Lamott was everything I wanted her to be and so much more. Last night I met Anne Lamott and listened to her read an excerpt from her book Grace Eventually and talk about various other bits of her accumulated life’s wisdom. She is a wonderful, caring, beautiful person with a great perspective and sense of humor to offer the world.
The most personally evocative comment of the evening was close to the beginning of her talk. In reference to beginning any journey or new project or trek of faith, she listed off a few hypothetical situations that could have applied to anyone in the audience that night, and then finished the statement with this: “…or no matter whether you’ve left the church of your childhood and are trying to find your way back to faith, we start where we are.” We start where we are and journey onward.
And throughout, she compared nearly anything a person could take on to the Fox Trot – she and her boyfriend are learning to dance. The counting for the Fox Trot is “slow slow quick-quick,” and it is indeed applicable to just about any new or on-going endeavor. After explaining this, she said, “It is a miracle to be willing to be bad at something.” How true; to approach something scary and new and completely outside any realm of normal activity for yourself and realize that you have at least a fifty percent chance of failing and to try it anyway no matter how badly you could flop, is in fact miraculous.
She shared with us another great bit of perspective courtesy a friend of hers (who I can’t remember). “Writing is like driving at night with the headlights on; you can only see a little bit in front of you, but you can make the whole journey that way.”
Finally, after the program, I waited in line for about 40 minutes to meet her and have her sign my book. It was well worth it. She asked me how I was, and I was just so grateful for the chance to hear her speak and meet her, that I sort of had a little tear and she said, “Are you sad or just overwhelmed?” I said, “Not sure; maybe both?” She stood up. “You look like you could use a hug.” And she hugged me. I told her I hoped she felt better soon – she’s had a cold all week. She handed me my signed copy of Bird by Bird, smiled, and that was it. A lovely and gratifying encounter all around.
I hope I have the pleasure of meeting her again in the future.

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: