Archive | March, 2008

I Quit the Gym!

29 Mar

Since the gym I was going to was in the same building as TAC, and no where near my house or BAC, I cancelled my membership when I left (though I’m convinced they’re still going to continue to take the $40/month out of my bank account).  After a week of adjusting to my new job/schedule/commute (or being lazy), I finally joined the gym near my house. 

The gym I joined is a BAG (Big Ass Gym).  It has locations in three major cities, plus some in the ‘burbs (like mine).  I live 1-1/2 miles away, plus I drive past it every day on the way home from the train station, so I have no excuse not to go (I also drive past my favorite Mexican restaurant every day, but have successfully avoided it.  At least, so far).  My branch of the gym is probably smaller than the others.  It doesn’t have a pool, but it does have a sauna & a steam room (which I tried to check out in the locker room without looking like a crazy perv).

I found my way to the locker room, which had tons of lockers, built in hairdryers & lotion, plus soap & shampoo in the showers.   After stashing my bag (without a lock on my locker — I like to live on the edge!), I hopped on a treadmill and tried to stealthily check out the cardio area.  There were a lot of machines, and some even had their own TVs!  I stayed away from those, for fear of not being able to use them.  They also had some different machines that I hoped someone would use so I could see how they worked, but no luck there.  They had a few of the same treadmills as TAG had, so I stuck with that, as I knew how to use it. 

A guy jumped on the treadmill next to mine, cranked it up to 7.o, and began running.  Every couple of minutes, he wiped the sweat from his brow, and flug it in front of him, not paying attention to the fact that someone might be walking in front of his treadmill.  He did this so often, despite my nasty glances in his direction, that I was thisclose to asking the lady at the front desk to bring him a towel.  I even remembered to wipe down the treadmill when I was finished, even though I tried to wave my hand in front of the paper towel dispenser like I did at TAG.

Anyway, BAG is nice.  I think I’ll be happy there, at least until we move and I have to do this all over again.  One day I’ll venture into the weight area, and maybe even take a class.  Baby steps. 

Deep Thoughts by Jack Handey

29 Mar
    When you go in for a job interview, I think a good thing to ask is if they ever press charges.

–Jack Handey

wikiHow of the Week: Where’s Waldo???

27 Mar

How to Find Waldo

Finding Waldo can be hard work, but with this guide you’ll be on your merry way.

Steps

  1. Look at an image of Waldo. There should be on the cover of the book. Look for the distinguishing features – striped top, blue pants, hat and glasses.
  2. Look at the scenery in which Waldo appears. Look for the colors that stand out in Waldo’s clothes, or look for the hat. These items will either be differently colored from the surrounding scenery or will stand out as something out of context. However, the picture is deliberately well hidden, so you need to be details oriented and persevere.
  3. Scroll across the paper with your index finger systematically until you find Waldo. You can start at the top or bottom and go along from side to side until you have covered the whole page.
  4. Repeat. Try this with every page in the book.

Tips

  • Sometimes, if you’re lucky, you can just put your finger down in any place and you’ll find Waldo. This is the random Waldo finding technique.
  • Although finding Waldo is hard enough, at the end of the book are more challenges harder than finding Waldo, give it a try.

Warnings

  • No matter how much you convince yourself, Waldo will not find you.

Got a Good Job in the City

25 Mar

So, today was day 2 of my new career at BAC.  I know you’re all dying to know the specifics, so here goes:

The benefits are so good that  it took 4-1/2 hours to go through them.  But, I was fed and appeased with chocolate, so I didn’t complain.

There appears to be no personal Internet use allowed.  I learned this by attempting to check my personal e-mail, and getting a big red X instead.  Ooopsie.

I found the kitchen & bathroom, but it took me 10 minutes to find my cube this morning.  I haven’t yet had lunch in the kitchen, so I don’t know the details.  (Such as, do they have an adequate salt supply?)  I think there is a toaster, because someone in my row o’cubes made a waffle this morning. 

Oh yeah, I have a cube.  This is a toughie.  I’ve had an office for four of the past 5-1/2 years.  I feel like someone is going to sneak up on me, and I can hear everything.  I wonder if I can listen to my iPod on my headphones? 

The people seem nice, but I met about a million of them and can’t remember who I met, let alone their names or what they do.  I know 5 people I will work with on a daily basis, and I know where their cubes are on the farm, so that’s good for now.  Oh, and I know the help desk phone #, even though I don’t know my own.

The commute is another toughie.  I took the Red Line yesterday.  That was a mistake.  The morning was okay, because I get on at the second stop, so I got a seat (I also got a large woman practically sitting in my lap, but whatever).  The ride home was awful.  Then the traffic was awful.  Then I got off a different exit and got lost, eventually ending up right where I started (its a longer story than that, but it makes me look really stupid, so I’ll spare you).

Today I ventured on to the commuter rail.  It was much nicer, but pricier.  Well worth it.  I had a seat, I knew what time it got in and left, and I even bought a twelve ride ticket until I order a monthly pass through BAC.  Luckily, I was not on this train.  That could have soured my train experience.

All in all, BAC is a good experience so far.  As much as I miss my martini guzzling, fried mac and cheese eating, ugly chair picking outing, TAC coworkers, I think I’ll be happy at BAC.  As soon as I figure out how to get in with my key card and without causing a security breach.  That’s my goal for tomorrow!

wikiHow of the week: Sitting

22 Mar

How to Sit at a Formal Party

There’s an empty spot I’ve always had inside me. I tried to fill it with family, religion, community service, but those were dead ends! I think this chair is the answer.–Matt Groening (b. 1954)

People have been sitting since the early days of Colonial America, when Benjamin Franklin determined that a sedentary orientation was the best position from which to achieve the comfort level necessary to enjoy books borrowed from the Library Company of Philadelphia, established in 1731. This is the the proper way to sit in a chair. This may be helpful when you’re at a lavish party.

Steps

  1. Decide very carefully which chair you are going to sit on. “Chairs to the left of me, chairs to the right, here I am stuck in the middle with you”.   (Are these folding chairs at my formal dinner party?  If so, I’m turning around and going home).

  2. When going to your table, pull out your chair. Pull it out slowly, but not too slowly. The goal is to complete this maneuver before the party ends.   (Don’t do this if someone is already in the chair).
  3. Sit down, again little by little, but not too slowly. You don’t want too much to happen between the time you begin your descent and the time you achieve your target position. You don’t want to miss any riparian entertainments being offered by the lady of the house.  (What?!?)
  4. If you have the opportunity to be seated out-of-doors, choose your location with great care. There may be a stupendous view just a few steps away. Don’t miss it. If mountains are near, use a feng-shui consultant and a compass so that you will achieve the perfect angle of repose.  (“No thank you Geeves, I’d rather sit out back with the livestock.”)

  5. Sit in the middle of the chair seat at first. If you are a magnificently accomplished chair sitter, you could try perching on the side, but only after quite a bit of rigorous practice. This might be useful if someone near you has not yet finished their dessert and you are still a bit hungry. You will probably want two helpings.   (Or f you have to share you seat with that cat and don’t want a crotch full of claws & teeth).

  6. If you are a cat, you will need to use a different body position. Sadly, modern-day technology has not advanced to the point where we know the perfect position for feline seating, so make your best guess. Run with it. You need to a take a chance in life to get a little comfort. (Here that, cats?  Owners, please read to you cat if they are too stupid to read.  And let me know, because stupid cats will not be invited to my next dinner party). 

Tips

  • Sitting has been outlawed in Nevada because it interferes with the ability of casino patrons to move among slot machines and other gaming devices. However, you can still find seating in nearby Utah if you are lucky enough to arrive on a non-sabbath day.  (You can’t sit anywhere in Nevada?  When the plane enters Nevada, do you have to stand up?)

Warnings

  • You shouldn’t do this at informal parties. (No sitting at informal parties.  Standing only).

  • Under no circumstances should you attempt to sit on a chair which is covered with snow.This could be incredibly dangerous and could , in case of a sudden rise in temperature, make you quite moist in exceedingly uncomfortable areas.  (You shouldn’t be at a formal party with snow on the chairs to begin with)

Never Say Goodbye

19 Mar

(You’re very welcome for the cheesy ear-worm!) 

As you know, I’m leaving TAC (tiny ass corporation for you blog newbies).  And, as excited as I am to begin this new stage of my life (with my new Mandy Moore haircut and freshly waxed brows), I am sad to be leaving the company I’ve been with for 5-1/2 years.  I’ve been thinking about what it will be like when I leave, of course, but it really hit me the other day.

We took a trip to visit a vendor in CT.  On the way home, we asked the limo driver to stop at the packie so we could get Powerball tickets.  And beer for the ride home.  Then, of course, we had to stop and pee.  And the token male of the group fetched us more beer, and, more importantly, Doritos (he’s a smart one, that Token Male.)  We went into the office when we returned, to pee again and photocopy the Powerball tickets so there would be no confusion and/or people fleeing with our cash if we won.  Then someone had the brilliant idea that we should switch around all of the nameplates on everyone’s doors.  Immature, yes, but we found it hilarious.  We ran around for ten minutes deciding who would be best as replacements for everyone.  Driving home later, I thought about it and started giggling like a loon for a good 20 minutes.  (In retrospect, that could have had something to do with the wine I had just tasted guzzled).

So I started thinking about these people I had spent 5-1/2 years with.  And I realized they truly are like my family.  In such a small group, its easy to get to know everyone really well (which isn’t always a good thing).  We’ve all been through a lot of happy stuff together, along with some really sad stuff.

The best way to describe our group is “quirky” — but in a good way!  We have cake for everybody’s birthday.  Everyone knows this.  In fact, we secretly try to hire based on birthdays so we can have a cake a month.  Yet, every time there is a birthday, we have to conspicuously gather in the conference room and call the person to a “meeting.”  And the birthday person is required to act surprised and try not to cringe as we wail away thought Happy Birthday.

Most of the group eats lunch together (Token Male hides in his cube due to the abundance of estrogen).  We pop popcorn and argue over if its cooked best at 2:40 or 2:50.  We read horoscopes, cheat on crosswords, and discuss TV shows and life in general.

We don’t go out a lot after work, but we can somehow convince the boss to take us out to lunch for the smallest occasions (like the snow pile melting in the parking lot).  We go on fabulous summer outings that often involve drinking before noon, and sometimes involve boats and invasions of personal space. 

The bottom line is, we work hard and play hard.  The company has been very successful in the years I’ve been there, and I’m sure will continue to grow.  And the main reason for that is the people.

Sure, we don’t always get along, and not everyone loves each other every day of the week.  This is the same group of people that had a two day debate over where to put the paper towels in the bathroom, and almost requires a spreadsheet to pick out pizzas for lunch.  But the bottom line is that its a great group of people, and an excellent group of workers.  I’ve made some very good friends there that I will be very sad to leave.  I’ll miss our coffee time and shopping trips, our sushi lunches and Subway runs, our baseball chats and baby talk.  Not that we won’t keep in touch, but it won’t be the same. 

One day I’ll just be a vague remembrance: “Remember Julie that used to work here?  The one who overcooked the popcorn and cheated on crossword puzzles?  She had a weird obsession with Friends and went running at lunch and stunk for the rest of the day?  I wonder what she’s doing now?  Coincidentally, we haven’t had to refill the salt shaker since she’s been gone!”

 Goodbye, TAC.  I’ll miss you!

You Don’t Want to Get With This?

17 Mar

I have a cold, thus making me a big whiny baby who thinks I can eat whatever I want (even if that involves $35 worth of cheese & crackers at Whole Paycheck).  I will spare you the picture of me on the couch, but picture a large blue stretchy headband in my new short haircut, glasses that are missing one nose pad, sock monkey PJs with a bright green tee shirt from my Saint Paddy’s Day race, and green & white striped socks.  Topped off by the brightest reddest nose ever.  Sexy, huh?  J can barely keep his hands off me.

Of course, this reminds me of another favorite Friends episode.  Short clip below for your enjoyment.

Now, off to bed I go.  Maybe J will rub Vicks on my chest while I watch Jon & Kate Plus Eight.