Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Recent Developments

Sometimes, you can't really put into words what you need to say.

What I want to say is that Mom has a boyfriend, and I think he's amazing, and I could not have handpicked anyone better suited for her.  I enjoy seeing them together, I'm thrilled that she's happy and I'm pleased for them both. They are IN. LOVE.  And it is adorable.

And in a separate set of emotions, I really miss my Dad and I wish I could get his take on a short list of pressing issues ranging from the mundane (home repair advice) to the existential (my purpose in life).

So, that's part of the emotional MMA taking up space in the Octagon that is my brain.

Again, let me state emphatically for the record - I'm totally pro-Mom dating, love the guy I have no issue with their relationship.  I think it's awesome.

Ok.  That's it.  That's all I have to say.

But I needed to put it out there, because now with the holidays coming, he and his kids (grown, older than me) may be part of the festivities and I didn't just want to throw you in the deep end without some water wings.

ae

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Pants? On fire!

I fell in love with Tim Gunn on Project Runway.  He just seems like a good guy.

My estimation of him has only improved over the last week.  He wrote an op-ed piece in the Washington Post about plus size fashion.  You can read it, here.

So, this weekend, I went looking for a dress for a wedding.  We went suit shopping last Sunday for my husband, and it went really well.  We had the manager of the Men's Wearhouse helping, and damned if he didn't put my husband in a gorgeous suit.

Now, since they don't make a Cocktail Dress Warehouse for the ladies, I went to the mall.

Since I was in Atlanta, I went to Perimeter Mall, the mall of my youth.

But Perimeter has changed.  Now there's a Nordstrom.  We started there.  I found a dress that was... OK.  But as I told my mother, for $180, I deserve better than OK.  It was standard fare.  Navy blue sheath with chiffon asymmetrical overlay and some silver beading detail.  If you're a woman of size, you know the dress, or its awkward cousin.


 This is the exact one.  $179.99?  Fuck that.



So we went to Von Maur.  It's upscale, has a dude playing a piano.  We entered on the first floor, and there were just tons of dresses.  Hundreds.  But they were in "straight sizes".  This extremely uptight looking white women asked me if she could be of assistance.  I asked her if plus sizes were one floor up, and she said it was.

And then I said, just as cheerful as can be,  "I am so excited!  With all the great choices down here, I'm sure the selection upstairs is going to be just as amazing, right?"

The heavyset woman at the register looked at me and gave me the look that said, "prepare to be disappointed, but not surprised".

The uptight woman was definitely taken aback, but she put some serious spin on it.  Well, no, the selection was not as large, but, there were plenty of great dresses up there.

Guess what.  Heavyset register woman gave the more accurate answer.

When the upstairs clerk asked if she could help, I said, "I'm sad.  You have so many dresses downstairs, but up here..."  I went on to tell her that I wasn't mad at her, that I knew it was out of her control.  I tried on two dresses.  Nada.

We decided on Dillards next.

WOW.  Their selection was quadruple what either of the fancy places had.  And pretty.  The sales clerk came up to offer to start a dressing room for me.  I told her how excited I was with her selection.  Ultimately, there were two dresses that would have worked well for the wedding.  One was more cheerful than the other, really gorgeous and $50 cheaper than the chiffon Love Boat Captain's Dinner one at Nordstrom, and I bought it.  Mom bought me another dress, a birthday present.  More on that one in the weeks to come. 

As I was checking out, Tori, the Dillards clerk, told me she appreciated my energy, because "So many women come in completely defeated".

And I appreciate the compliment, but OF FUCKING COURSE we feel defeated.  We're so marginalized.

 But from now on, I'm going to speak up.  Politely.  But loud and clear.

I really wanted to go back downstairs to pruneface at Von Maur and tell her, "You know, you were wrong.  Your plus size dress selection is sad.  I understand that you don't have any control over that,  but your lack of candor is actually more insulting than the shitty selection.  Peace out."

Ok, so maybe not so politely.

We ended our shopping trip at Macy's.

Now, this one is kind of a ringer for me.  I used to work in the Plus Size department AT THIS VERY STORE.

And the first thing I noticed is that the department is smaller than it was back in the day.  They have taken over one section for straight size women's suits.  They took another section for maternity clothes.  The clothes are all jammed in there, but they have a decent amount of stuff.  It's shitty, but better than any Macy's in Nashville.

I bought a dress and a blouse. And I told the cashier who checked me out that they'd shrunk the department.  She said, "I'm not sure about that."

Well, ma'am.  I used to work here, so, I am. And I explained how.  She was not impressed.  Whatev. I got clothes.

But from now on, I'm not apologizing for wanting better and more.

ae

Friday, September 16, 2016

Long time listener...

I took the day off today.  Much needed.  I did some basic stuff.  Picked up stuff to make my Halloween costume.  Got a cheap Asian massage, got my hair done.

That's kind of a fun story.  There was a mix-up and I sat in the reception area waiting on my stylist for about 45 minutes.  He wanted to comp my haircut, and I wouldn't let him.  I worked in the service industry - there's no reason to be an asshole over an honest mistake.  I also tipped him well because he is the first person in a decade who understand my hair and how to cut it.

Anyway. 

As I was leaving my hair appointment, I got a call from one of my favorite customers.  One of thhose customers that I'd take a call from even on a day off.

He said, "Hey, I know you're on vacation - this isn't a work call."

He had a joke for me.

Customer:  Ok, what's got a small dick and hangs down?

Me: I don't know, what?

Customer:  A bat!

Me: Haha, ok...

Customer:  Ok, now.  What's got a big dick and hangs up?

CLICK.  DIAL TONE.

He called back 30 seconds later and I was still laughing. 

Asked if I like the joke.  I told him the only thing I didn't like is that I couldn't tell it.

But I can share that he told it, and that's almost as good.

And yes, my customers are sick and twisted.  I love that about them.

ae


Sunday, September 11, 2016

Ain't that a kick...

I went to a party this weekend.  I went to one last weekend as well.

What you might not know about me is that I have mild social anxiety.   I have to talk myself into going to parties and I dread them, but I always have fun.

And that's what happened this weekend and last.

I'm excited to be home instead of packing for a trip this week.  We need to get some work done at the house, and I need to get some traction on that project.

I was supposed to be on the road this week (and next) but the travel gods decided I needed a break, and they provided it in the form of an ill-prepared customer.

So now, instead of two weeks on the road, I get two weeks in Nashville.

And then two more weeks in Nashville on top of that.  So.  Yeah!

I'm going to enjoy it.

Party aside, it was kind of a quiet weekend.  There was grocery shopping.  Naps.  Petting my dog.

Laundry.  Always laundry.

I have nothing new.

ae

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

You'll never know dear...

I was going to write a long post bitching about all the horrible stuff I had happen to me today.

But then I got a phone call from a friend who is having a hard time and needed some advice.   At which point, my horrible stuff was suddenly not horrible.

This is a friend, who, if you asked me to put together a list of people who have their shit together and would never need MY advice - well, he'd make the top of the list.

So, the thing is, you never know.  People who seem to be doing fine sometimes aren't.  And people who don't feel like they are doing very well, may have more to offer than you'd imagine.

The world is a weird and funky place.

That said, I did have kind of a botched day.  I'll ignore, for now, the fact that dinner was weird and the server was totally rude.   Although it was/he was.

I'll even pass over the fact that I tend to get ignored by sales people sometimes and that's irritating as fuck.

I will briefly say that I had some issues with parking today which made me run late to the client site.  Well, technically, I got there on time, but there was no parking, so they directed me to a lot three blocks away.  And in my rush to park and get to class, I rubbed a huge raw spot on my heel.  Thanks, cute shoes.

And I will say that their computers were all jacked up.  And then we had a fire drill, and that one of the nurses glared at me the entire class.  And that they had twice as many people in the class as they were contracted for.

But.

BUT.

I was able to take a call from a friend who needed someone to talk to. I might have even helped a little.

And I have shoes on my feet, and a job where I get to try and teach people things to make their jobs easier, even if they hate me for it.

And even if the waiter neglects me, I have food to eat.  And even if sales clerks ignore me, I can buy presents for my friends, my dog, myself.

And I have friends.

And a dog.

And if all else fails, I have myself.

And none of that is bad.

Ever.

ae

PS:


 Piper gets a new collar.  Which is one of the great things that came out of today.



Friday, September 2, 2016

Love on Four Legs

I took the day off today.  Mostly because I have to travel for work on Monday and I pitched a fit about it.  My boss offered me today off and I took it.

I went to the Southern Salvage this morning and looked at counter tops.  Found what I needed, and I'm feeling good about the plans I'm making for the kitchen.

I got a pedicure, then hit Trader Joe's and now I have some beans cooking for dinner.

I also have Piper sitting next to me on the couch and she's put her paw on my laptop while she snoozes.




 I am so completely in love with this dog.

She is joy and energy and kindness and exuberance.  She relaxes me and motivates me.

I would do anything to make her happy.

And I hope she is.

ae

Thursday, September 1, 2016

It's raining rodents!

What a strange day.  I went into the office and had a great training class this morning.  I was pretty damn tired because I got in late last night from Houston.

I ordered a sandwich, took a call from one of my long-time and much loved customers.  He and I can talk and keep it real.  I told him if he just wants to call and shoot the bull, he doesn't need to make up a problem he's having just to do it.

Finally after reviewing an agenda with my client for next week, I headed home.

I stopped at the store on the way to grab a few things to make dinner, and as I pulled my car in to park, a school bus stopped to let some of the middle school kids off. A girl sticks her head out and yells at me, "Extra Large Marshmallow!"

Now, maybe she was yelling at or about someone else, but... being paranoid as I am, it certainly seemed to be directed at me.

Look, I have a lot of Liberal White Guilt - so if a black kid wants to yell shit at me, I'm strong enough to take it.  Privileged White Lives Matter, but I'm fine.  Obviously, I posted it on Facebook, and it's a mix of amusement and outrage, as it should be.

So, anyway, I got inside, got settled and commenced to chilling., Within a few minutes, Piper and I were sitting out on the back deck.  She had her back to the yard and was chewing on a ball, when I heard a rustling in the trees, and all of a sudden a pile of leaves/debris fell into the middle of the yard, and a full-sized squirrel emerged from the debris, looked around and high-tailed it out of the yard.  It was funny as hell.  And Piper never caught on.  She didn't hear or see it.  And so, no squirrel died today on my watch.

Nuts to You!!!


I am out of the office tomorrow, and that's perfectly fine.  I'm glad. I'm going to do some research tomorrow, chill out, maybe go to a movie, get a pedicure.

Who knows?  All I can say for sure is that the sky is falling.

Love you, mean it!

ae

PS - My husband took the photo of the squirrel - he's hella talented with a camera.