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Monday, June 30, 2008

When The Weather Gets Hot....

Work is almost tolerable when you get to end the day by popping the top on a nice cold one and grilling out some burgers. I have no idea why I waited so long to buy a grill. I had one at my apartment years ago that I didn't know how to use, but Dad chucked it across the yard because he stubbed his toe on it or something and that was the end of that. I have lived in this house now over three years, and this summer I decided to take the dive and buy a really nice grill. Best decision I ever made.

So this month is a busy one. I am tearing up all the carpet in my house and replacing it with laminate flooring. Hooray! With two dogs and two cats living in a relatively small house, it's just too much hair for carpets. I think I will be more diligent about keeping the hair in check when I can actually see little black and brown and gray tumbleweeds rolling across the floors, rather than it getting buried deeper and deeper into the carpet. It just wreaks havoc on the allergies and I'm sure dust mites and all kinds of other microbials that my sister talks about are building colonies and time shares and whatever.

I also have a trainer coming from Bark Busters. It has become very clear to me that I have failed as a dog owner. My dogs are completely insane. Getting a second Labrador Retriever was supposed to make the first one act less nuts....


Now the insanity just outweighs me. They chew. They jump. They nip. They bark. They lick. They get on furniture. They bolt out the front door. They drag me all over the neighborhood on walks.

The only thing they DON'T do is come when I call.

I chose this dog trainer, because she has a lifetime warranty. I pay her an obscene amount of money, and in return she has to keep coming back until my dogs are perfect angels, capable of outdoing any dog at Westminster.

We shall see.

A lot of other stuff is going on, so with all the hullabaloo my fiance in a moment of genius and consideration got me a day at the spa. Manicure, pedicure, massage, facial, eyebrow wax, lip wax, on and on and on. I shall be the fairest in the land....

and probably the most in pain. I made them add on a Brazilian wax. I've gotten bikini waxes before, but I'm thinking about going the full Monty for my vacation. I want to test drive it first though, because if it causes a week's worth of agonizing pain then it will ruin my vacation.

OUCH. It hurts just thinking about it.

Nighty night.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Lazy Days Ahead...

Remember Saturday mornings when you were kid? Here was mine...

First I would be woken up by my older sister (always the early riser). Then, I would stagger into the living room in my footie pajamas rubbing my eyes. There would sit my parents in their matching, uncomfortable wingback chairs reading the newspaper. I'd climb in my mom's lap and pretend to read the paper too. She'd tell me to stretch my toes out and try and touch the bureau drawers located approximately four feet away. She said it would make me taller, and I believed her.

Dad would see that everyone was awake and head into the kitchen to make a huge breakfast, which included every assortment of artery clogging meat, protein, and morning confection you could imagine. For moi: two eggs over easy, two pieces of bacon, two sausage links, a glass of milk, and a cinnamon roll from the middle of the pan. I refused to eat the inferior edge rolls.

After breakfast we would all scatter, but for that first hour of the day, every Saturday morning, we were a family. One of those great sitcom families. Albeit a sitcom where the five year old eats her eggs over easy, but still. It was a different time. A better time.

Things are so different now. Until recently Saturday mornings were just another work day for me. I would grab a cup of coffee and head into the office to work on whatever freelance work I currently had on my plate. I never had a day off.

Now, I have realized I need a day off. Two in fact. Saturday and Sunday. Like every other red-blooded American. My fiance has to work Saturdays, so I can't recreate the calm togetherness of my youth, but I can for damn sure relax for a bit before I start my day.

This morning, it is a cup of coffee and some homemade biscotti. That's right. HOMEMADE biscotti. The agenda for today you ask?


Ben, the aforementioned intended, doesn't believe me. He knows me too well. As soon as I am finished typing this blog, I will begin straightening the things on my desk. Then I will notice that the desk really ought to be dusted. By the end of the day, the house will be spotless, the yard will be manicured, the driveway will be repaved, and I will be complaining about NEVER HAVING A DAY OFF! I know; I have issues.

Speaking of days off, I have finally done it. I am taking a vacation. Six glorious days and five glorious nights in Hilton Head. I haven't been on vacation for eight years. Now that I think of it, I have been saying, "I haven't been on vacation for eight years" for three years now. You do the math. I was an English major.

I have been all over the country in the last few years. I have even been to places that have a beach. Even put my feet in the sand. But work-related travel, does not constitute a vacation. Unless, you wake up every day for more than three days with nothing on the agenda except laying on the beach, listening to the waves, with a fruity little drink in your hand, you are not on vacation. Period.

More on my vacation planning to come....

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Another long day...

Today started out weird. Every song I listened to on the way to Cincinnati this morning made me cry. Just one of those mornings I guess. Itinerary:

5:00 Wake up and get ready
6:00 Get in car and head to gas station
6:15 Drive to Cincinnati
8:15 Arrive at shop 15 minutes late
8:20 Get the disturbing news that my hard drive (which I had sent to our IT guy to try to recover data from) is fried beyond repair. 3 weeks of marketing data gone.
8:45 Head over to Coffee Shop for meeting
11:00 Head home to Lexington
1:30 FINALLY get home and begin working again.
5:30 Go to clock out and realize that I had not been clocked in

5:40 begin this blog....

I am not really comfortable with writing about work, although it is one of the largest facets of my life. I some how feel like committing my true feelings about the work I do will suddenly find their way into my employers inbox and that will be that.

What can I say....

I am a marketing manager.

What's difficult about that is the constant measuring. Web statistics. Customer surveys. Profit Versus Revenue Versus Cost. Budgets. Business reply counts. Number of sales calls. Email campaign bounces. Email campaign unsubscribes. On and on and on.....

I care a tremendous deal about what people think. Why shouldn't I? It's my job to care what people think. But being constantly at the mercy of makes you extremely paranoid and self aware to the point that you take everything personally.

"Take me off your f*&king mailing list! I never asked for your #$&* and the last thing I need is more spam!!!"

You want so badly to respond and say, "Hey, Potty Mouth. If you will recall, eight months ago you signed up to be on our mailing list. And by the way, you hurt my feelings. And if you would just ask nicely, I would gladly remove you from our mailing list and never violate your precious junk mail folder again!"

But Potty Mouth doesn't care. Potty Mouth is having just as bad a day as you are, and simply imagines some automaton sitting in a cubicle grinning insanely from ear to ear for no reason and filing his complaint under the unsubscribe list and never thinking about it again.

But he didn't get an automaton. He got me. And what Potty Mouth will never know is that I will dwell on his e-mail for probably the next forty-eight hours. Congratulations, Potty Mouth. You win.

Which brings me to tonight. Girls night out. This is a new weekly tradition being started by my friend Robin and I and a few other victims. Tonight it will be just Robin and I though, which is fine by me. What's great about Robin is her complete acceptance of herself. She is the most self aware person I know and acknowledges all of her traits with gentle credence.

Robin would not be effected by Potty Mouth. Robin would send him some good vibes and go on with her life.

Hopefully she will rub off on me tonight, as I am sure tomorrow will be filled with Potty Mouths, Web Traffic Declines, and Customer Survey Cards written in blood.

Just like every other day.


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Down the Rabbit Hole We Go...

Another blog. Another person's opinion plastered out in cyberspace for everyone to see. Maybe for no one to see...

It is another hot KY summer, and I find myself unhappy. Anyone who knows me will be cuing the eye rolling right about now. They've heard it all before. This summer is going to be different, though. It's going to be the summer that I start creating experiences for myself, instead of dreaming them. Stay tuned...

Sometimes when one is embarking on a journey, it is important to stop for a moment and take inventory. Today. Today was up at dawn. Work. Run. Work some more. And now this...

But it is more than that. It is stifling hot. Take your breath away hot. Almost...not quite...but almost what my grandmother refers to as Monarch Suicide Season. That is the time of year here in the South where it gets so hot that Monarch butterflies start hurling themselves in front of your windshield, because they just can't take it anymore.

My companions, Gus and Nola. I think they sense I am going through something. My constant shadows, they are somehow, inexplicably, even more in my business than usual.


My firstborn.

Gus has been a pendulum of emotion lately. One minute his head is buried in my lap with a look of concern only rivaled by my mother's. The next minute he refuses to acknowledge my presence.

I think he has hit puppy teen years.

Gus copes with the heat by eating grass. Constantly. He has no intention whatsoever of retrieving anything. He will run, he will swim, but no retrieving. You have to respect his blind rebellion against his DNA. Or you could just feel sorry for him. Either way, he is who he is. I wish I was so.


Nola is my second born. Nola...has issues.

Unlike her brother, Nola is a slave to her DNA. The only thing that goes through her brain about 90% of the time is, "Throw something, so I can go get it and bring it back to you so you can throw it and I can go get it and bring it to you and then you could throw it so I could go get it...."

Every now and then though, you will catch her in a regal moment. And you wonder...

I have a house. I have a man in my life. I have friends. I have hobbies. I have a job. I have issues.

Here we go.