Monday, January 31, 2005

the little engine that couldn't.

I left work at 4 PM on Friday amidst a scurrying of people flocking out the door.

Reports of flurries! An ice storm! It was coming in sooner than anyone thought!

For anyone not in the metro Atlanta area, a single snowflake causes the closings of every school, college and church in the area, the selling out of bread, milk, peanut butter and votive candles in the grocery stores, traffic snarls even worse than previously imagined (in a city known for having some of the worst traffic in the country), and panic in the streets (a great Richard Widmark movie, by the way).

So I sent a grocery list to the ipager of The Man Who Lives in the House who was leaving work at 3 PM, because we had absolutely no food in the house, and I got on MARTA at 4:05, expecting to beat him home.

The MARTA ride from Five Points to North Springs takes about 35 minutes. My exit is about ten minutes past that. So figure I should have walked in the door, adding on bad traffic, no later than 5, 5:15 PM.

When I walked into my house, it was 8:30 PM.

What, pray tell, could have happened to cause me to lose more than three hours of time? Was traffic really so awful that it took three extra hours to get home?


The MARTA train broke down halfway between the Medical Center and Dunwoody stations. The time was approximately 4:25 PM. The driver never announced anything over the loudspeaker (i.e., "We're sorry to inconvenience you, folks, this train will be moving momentarily..."). In fact, at no time during this story was any announcement ever made.

About twenty minutes after the train had broken down, the driver came back to my car (the last car) and fiddled around with the engine in the back. We heard something snap really hard, and then he swore VERY LOUDLY. The insurance claims adjuster next to me said the driver had just locked up the brakes.

The driver went back to the front of the train, came back to the back and fiddled with the brakes some more, went back to the front of the train, came back to the back, did this six or seven times.

By this time an hour had passed. MARTA had begun single tracking and seven northbound trains passed us. To entertain ourselves my car all went to the side when a train passed and made faces at the passengers in the passing trains. We were having a grand time, passing around food, knitting (at least I was), cracking jokes. We needed only a pregnant woman going into labor to make our lives complete.

Suddenly, there was a *THUD!* against our train. Another train had connected to ours. Hooray! That driver came onto our train. He and our driver started arguing, and then got into a fist fight in our aisle. They were fighting over whose job it should be to fix the train. Note that during this time, no train fixing was actually being performed. We thought this was hilarious and started betting on the outcome of the fight. Unfortunately, the fight ended inconclusively when a MARTA manager broke it up so I didn't win any money.

Another hour passed while the three of them walked back and forth from the front of our train to the back of our train.

Then, lo and behold! our train began moving, being pushed by the attached train! We were being pushed. . . pushed. . . almost made it. . . not quite there yet. . . to the Dunwoody station. . . and we didn't make it. Oh well. I know! Maybe we can make it back to the Medical Center station! Yeah! We're rolling. . . moving. . . almost there. . . almost. . . stopping. . . nope. Hey, what if we try to make it back to Dunwoody again? Yeah! Moving. . . almost there. . . nope. Let's go back to Medical Center! Moving. . . almost there. . .

You can guess the outcome. It's a wonder the trains even stay on the track at all with these geniuses running them.

Okay, new plan. Move everyone from the attached four car train into the last two cars of that train. Move everyone from the broken down six car train into the first two cars of the attached train. One they're aboard, repeat about five times how they have to move into the four cars of that train.

Then sit there for another 40 minutes.

THEN push the train to the Dunwoody station.

This time, it works.

However, once at the station, the doors do not open.

And then the train that comes does not wait long enough to let the passengers aboard....

I did, however, get quite a bit of knitting done.

And remember, MARTA is smarta!.

Thursday, January 27, 2005

do i have to stay?

Napoleon decided to regale me with tales of how he finally got some with his completely insane fat ex-girlfriend (we'll call her Miss Piggy) and we going into such illicit detail as to the blow jobs that he actually FOLLOWED ME INTO THE WOMEN'S RESTROOM AT WORK TO CONTINUE THE STORY!!!!

Napoleon: Where are we? (looking around, confused)
Me: Where do you think we are?
Napoleon: It looks like the bathroom! What are we doing in here?
Me: I know what I'M doing in here, I very clearly ended my last sentence with, "Good night, I'm leaving, I'll see you tomorrow."

I swear to fucking Dog, if my paperwork, currently sitting on the Security Group's desk up at corporate, waiting on them to get off their asses to call on my references who have absolutely positively not been called yet, does not go through soon, someone is going to die of unnatural causes.

Tuesday saw me going to the Gwinnett knitting group of some unknown name at La Madeleine to meet Janice to give her the yarn prominently pictured in the spring green on her blog, the Karabella lace mohair. This was her resignation letter for those of you too lazy to read the comments:

Write a fairly conventional resignation letter. Present it to him with a posy of drooping flowers in a fat vase. Wait a beat to see if he gets it.


Dear Soon-to-be former employer:
I'm writing to let you know that I will be leaving this job in 2 weeks. I can no longer GET UP any enthusiasm for work here. My spirits DROOP LIMPLY when I get up in the morning to come to work. There's nothing here to AROUSE my curiosity anymore.
I have a chance to RISE to a new opportunity. It's a job that requires the THRUST of intellectual activity that I crave. It also comes with a FAT new salary. In fact, I can already feel myself SWELLING with pride at the thought of moving on.



Extra credit: Print it on the back of a spam email for V!ag ra or some other male enhancement product.

Rabbitch submitted the following:

Dear Genitally-Incompetent Neanderthal:

Although the prospect of discussing your erectile dysfunction and/or the intimate details of your private life -- at taxpayer's expense -- has been one of the few reasons to chew through the restraints and come to work every morning for the past ___ (fill in number) years, I find myself in the difficult position of having to choose between being treated like a well-paid adult, or continuing to make myself available for your further abuse for an undetermined length of time.

Although the choice would seem obvious to any sane person with the smallest shred of self-respect, I find myself in the startling position of having made the opposite choice.

Therefore, my finaly day in your employ will be _____ (fill in date. I would like at this time to invite you to go fuck yourself, as comprehensively as your medical condition will allow. I would then appreciate it if you would bite your own ass, very very hard, my ass being unavailable to you for this purpose.

She Who Does Not Want A Reference Letter

Somehow I think Rabbitch has had experience with this.

The cashmere goodness is progressing. I'm on the second repeat of the cable pattern.

I have a friend who is looking for an Aran sweater to knit with an underarm measurement of 50". She was looking at Rogue but it only goes to 48". Alice Starmore patterns (I do own Aran Knitting having purchased it when it was new at $35) only go up to 38". She doesn't like the men's sweaters. Ideas?

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

and the winners are....

Janice from GA and the almost dead-now Rabbitch. Why both of them? Not only did both write brilliantly clever tell-off resignation letters, both in very different styles, but both were the only brave souls who submitted them. Plus, I feel sorry for Rabbitch for being so old she's almost dead, and I want to give her a consolation prize. So, Janice from Georgia, whom I've actually met in person, please either email me your address so I can send you your prize or let's make plans to meet up in person.

My offer letter has not arrived yet. The sign off is on the vice president's desk. Then it goes to the recruiter who checks my references. Who then sends the offer letter. When they get the offer letter back they start the background check. After I'm cleared I can tell off Napoleon.

When will it ever end?

We're afraid the vice president will be vindictive and not sign off, actually. It's a bit of a concern. Seriously.

I ripped out all progress on the cashmere pepto-pink scarf and restarted it using an Aran pattern in Vogue Knitting On the Go Scarves Two. I'm much happier. People are more impressed, and after all, isn't that why we all knit, to impress others?

Sorry for that dose of sarcasm. Napoleon came to my desk yesterday wearing the most godawful piece of crap I'd ever seen.

Now, I like new knitters. I never diss new knitters. I know new knitters can do very...creative work. I have been teaching people to knit for more than 15 years and I've been knitting for 23 years.


This piece of crap was "knit" for Napoleon by the "fat ex-girlfriend." She decided that "knitting was trendy" and therefore "she should do it." She apparently taught herself and this was her seventh "scarf." Not first, not even fourth, but seventh. She apparently also thinks it's perfect. I am not nor was I ever delusional about my knitting. I can see my errors. She cannot see hers. Napoleon jealously ogled and fondled (*shudder*) my cashmere Aran scarf yesterday, proclaiming that his Antoinette was no itgirl.

Are you as creeped out as I am by this exchange?

And how do you tell someone who is clearly not meant to be a knitter that they need to give it up? Particularly if she's delusional? I've only run into one such student in the about 75 people I've taught to knit.

Hypnotic website of the day.

Friday, January 21, 2005


I cannot recreate that post, it took too darned long to type.

The long and short of it is this.

1. Still looking for resignation tell off letters. International submissions welcome. What have you always wanted to say and never have to your worst boss ever? Only have excellent submissions from Janice and Rabbitch so far. I know you're out there.

2. In knitting news, I'm knitting a worsted weight pink cashmere scarf for a friend. I'm about to rip out what I've done and make it cable knit.

3. In reading news, I still read two to three books a day. The new J. D. Robb Eve Dallas comes out next week, Lioness.

4. Parents: arrived at 5 AM. Ignored all directions. Took a completely different way and then blamed me for not giving them adequate directions. Didn't call when they got lost. Didn't bring the cell phone charger for a week long trip. Managed to break the Sirius radio antenna in my driveway and blamed everyone but themselves for it. Were afraid to let the dog loose in the house and kept asking me if I "had permission" for them to do so. From whom? The homeowner's association? It's my house! (Well, mine and the bank's, but still.) After three hours of not getting into any trouble, they still asked if it was okay for Birdie to be loose in the house.

When they arrived the only thing they wanted to do was go to Target. For four hours. Do they not have Targets in upstate New York? Are they so vastly different? Oh, but they don't sell the small sized dog bones in New York. Wow. This made the trip worthwhile, then, I guess. They asked if there was a laundromat nearby to wash the dog's bedding. What, exactly, is wrong with my washer and dryer? Oh, they're allowed to use it? I told them only if they drove to Kroger and bought miniature laundry soap and paid me in four quarters.

They left the next morning. The Man Who Lives in the House and I were ready to tear out our hair. My friend came two hours later. We drank much wine and relaxed. I like visitors like that.

Crazy Lady called me this morning and asked me to fly up to Albany so I could drive her to New York in February for the Westminster Kennel Club dog show (Birdie is entered) at Madison Square Garden. This is that big snooty one they show on tv over two days and makes all the news shows. I was on the news several times at this show in...1998? 1999? Maybe both? Anyway, her reasoning behind this is that the Gramercy Park Hotel is under construction and she refuses to stay at any other hotel in Manhattan and besides, other hotels are charging $250 per night. Therefore, she will pay $260 for my round trip ticket to Albany so I can drive down at 3 AM, get to the Garden at 6 AM, be stuck there until 8 PM (unless Birdie wins Best of Variety in which case I'll be there until Midnight), with the incentive of "I'll buy you some deli! From the kosher deli!" So I can't even get some freaking CHEESE on my corned beef sandwich! After which I get to drive BACK for three hours.

When I reminded her I'd miss Valentine's Day with The Man (and granted, he won't care, just slap a box of Cello chocolate covered cherries in his hands and he's as happy as a clam), her response was, "I'll send him some chocolate on your behalf."

So...should I do it? Last time I went I rammed headfirst (unintentionally) into Larry King about three times, and landed on tv more times than I could count.

bear with me.

I just spent 45 minutes typing up what happened with Crazy Lady, and Blogger ate it, and my backup copy on my computer disappeared.

This is why I use a Mac.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

take a tip from rabbitch

Don't worry about me or my burning bridges. Let me worry about it. Seriously. Prizes to good resignation letters or even one good line or the scenario of me telling him off or walking out or whatever.

Unless y'all want to just GIVE it to Rabbitch....

Sunday, January 16, 2005

it's been a long time coming.

Let me begin by reminding everyone of the mail situation at my house. Go ahead, read it now. I'll wait. Come right back.

One might think that The Man Who Lives in the House would have resolved this situation by now. Well, the truth is, he did come up for a solution to this situation. His solution was to have yours truly sort through all of the mail. Then it would be All My Fault and I Could Not Complain if the mail became a Teetering Tower of Mail. He has remained firmly resolute on this policy.

Despite my two broken ankles and bum right knee.

So, in preparation for the loonies (that link was for you, Rabbitch), I cleaned the house and found not just one, but two towers of mail in The Man's office to sort through, whereupon I found that the lovely, sweet, thoughtful, wonderful and kind Colette had, at some time in the past, nobody knows when, sent me a RAOK gift package. It contains green goddess soap, alphabet bubble bath, Lindt Lindor truffles, Yarnia lace weight mohair, clover bamboo knitting needles and a pattern for a lovely lace scarf to make using the mohair.

Thank you, Colette! I humbly apologize for not acknowledging the gift earlier, since I didn't know of its existence until just

I also found a wonderful card from Lisa which brightened my day. Lisa had some excellent yarn pictured on her card. Thank you, Lisa!

I have to give a big holiday bonus to the postman. He clearly deserves it.

I still have guests. I am doing this by sneak post and telling them I need to post about the RAOK. I can't post about them yet. Even though they don't know what a blog is.

Perhaps on Tuesday, from work, I can post about them.

From the job I am about to quit because I got the other job.

Everyone celebrate for me. And please, I need suggestions on my resignation letter. Maybe I should make it a contest. Post ideas / full text of letters / whatever in the comments. Most amusing or creative or down-to-earth or whatever will get....something. I'll figure out what. You have until Saturday, midnight.

For a refresher on my current job situation, read this. Throw in some complete incompetence on the part of current boss, lack of learning about the job or the project in the two and a half years he's been here, and the undermining of my authority in front of my employees. Think that sums it all up.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

loony bin.


Wednesday, January 12, 2005

the imminent arrival of the loonies

Crazy Lady arrives tonight, at 3 AM. This time my stepfather is coming too. The time of arrival is but one reason for their complete insanity. Below is an almost word-for-word transcript of the phone conversation I had with Crazy Lady when she called me at work yesterday.

CL: Is there a place in your grass where I can set up my ex pen so Birdie [Ed. note: one of Crazy Lady's 85 beagles] can dig in your lawn?
Totally Sane Me: Umm, Mom, I just paid a lot of money to my landscaper to finally have a front lawn for the first time. Plus, my lawn is brand new, it's on top of moss, and it's mostly on Georgia red clay, which if Birdie digs in with her white paws will never come out in a bath, ever.
CL: Well, fuck your landscaper. Birdie wants to dig.

Ok, never mind the complete lack of thought or consideration for my lawn or landscape. It's the landscaper we say "fuck" to. And if Birdie does get a speck of Georgia red clay on her, which trust me, will never come out, I will never hear the end of it, and it will all be my fault.

I called my stepfather, Rambo, who said his plan was to set the ex pen up in the driveway and walk Birdie around the neighborhood. And then he said, "Your mother is crazy."

After which time he asked me to find the best location to put the gut pile after he killed the deer that hang out in my front lawn....

I think he was joking. Sorta.

Saturday, January 08, 2005

Happy Birthday, Elvis!

Today is my wedding anniversary. Obviously with The Man Who Lives in the House.

When my mother (herein referred to as Crazy Lady) called this morning to wish us a Happy Anniversary (note: my Mother-in-Law, herein referred to as Enabling Alcoholic, never called nor acknowledged the event), she asked The Man which anniversary it was.

He said it was the third.

It's the fourth.

As a Very Special Anniversary Gift, The Man sent me this link via instant messenger. He even thought to mention my sharing it on "that stupid blog thing you have." Since I didn't know he even knew I had a blog, perhaps we're moving ahead in the world.

Now, if I only knew what happened to that lost year of marriage...perhaps lost in the Bermuda Triangle? After all, we were married there.

Friday, January 07, 2005

getting it from all sides

Thanks for everyone's kind words about my current job! I haven't gone into too much detail. I have been in this kind of situation before and it's difficult. I'm not in the "have sex with me or lose your job" kind of situation. I'm in the "you're my employee and therefore let me tell you all about how I can't get an erection" confidante kind of situation. Gross! I mean, do I look like a fucking psychiatrist? Can we set some mother fucking boundaries here, people? If I even attempt to do so I am being "insubordinate." So fully 5 hours of my taxpayer-paid Federal government contractor workday is spent hearing about his fat girlfriend and how he can't get it up or how she complains she he can't get her off (I mean seriously, people, she's never heard of a fucking vibrator?), and then the unthinkable happened.

She dumped his ass.

Now all I get is "How can I get her back? I still love her! If I call her do you think she'll have pity sex with me?" blah blah blah.

Our corporate headquarters are in a suburb of DC, so they're no help.

Carriebelle commented that Atlanta was not a remote location. Well, it kinda is when you compare it to Washington, D.C. Since the job is in DC, I would be in a remote location. I might as well be in the outer reaches of Africa for all they think.

[post edited for reasons only I know]

We did go to a yarn store in DC, Stitch DC. Nice Store, friendly atmosphere, decent stock, highly recommended.

Thursday, January 06, 2005


The casts are off! I'm still limping about but I am getting there. I did sprain my wrist, somehow. We won't discuss that.

I got RAOKed! I'll taker pics and post details when I am not wiped out from my trip to the nation's capital. I interviewed for a job, where I not only had to convince them I was the best candidate, but also that the job, which should be done in DC, can be done from the slightly remote location of Atlanta.

I'm tired of being sexually harrassed by my boss. Yes, you read that correctly. No, my company won't do anything about it. I was told they couldn't because they aren't in Atlanta.

I owe many, many pictures. I shall even post them.