Thursday, June 30, 2011

It's not me, it's you

I seem to always be the bad guy. Apparently I'm not supposed to say what I think and I'm supposed to just smile no matter what kind of abuse I receive. Keeping sweet is not part of my religion.

Several years ago, I went to Costco and bought some stuff. Some was regular stuff that I had to go through the regular cashiers to pay for and I also had one carton of cigarettes. Now, at the time, you had to pay for cigarettes before you ever left the cigarette cage and the cashier would tape the receipt right to the carton. So I buy my carton there and then head to the regular lines in order to check out. As I'm standing there, having put my stuff on the conveyor belt, the woman behind me decides that I'm obviously too stupid to live or else I'm trying to pull a fast one and she says, "Excuse me, I think you forgot to put this other item up there." I, being me, said, "No, I didn't." Then the woman behind her commiserates with her saying, "Some people...." So I was the bad guy despite being the victim of someone being unable to mind her own business.

The next time I got to be a bad guy was when Knit Happens was closing and I had a pile of some seriously luscious yarn next to me while I thought about what I wanted to do with it. A little girl, who had been behaving beautifully in a store with way too many people in it, came up and started to grab my yarn. I said, "Please don't" and her mother took exception to that, informing me that she could touch it if she wanted to. I told her that no, she couldn't, because it was mine. She made some other comment and I told her that that was why I had said please, because I really do try to be very polite and considerate of less-than-fully-grown humans. Mom looks at me and says that I'm not a very nice person.

Are we seeing a pattern here? And, yes, I was starting to think that it really was me and not them. But what am I supposed to do with the Costco woman? Say, wow, you're right, I did forget that, thanks for pointing that out to me and then still not put the cigarettes on conveyor belt? No win situation here for me. And it turned out that they were intimately acquainted with the woman and her antics at Knit Happens. Of course, the thing that really peeves me is that I then try to "prove" that I'm not the bad guy and I really am a nice person.

Always a mistake.

Today, I was at Chicken Out with my friend, CV. We had had our dinner and were chitchatting, again minding our own business when a woman walked in with her young son, who I was later informed was four years old. He was climbing up on the counter, he was running around, and he ran by CV and me a couple times before coming over and grabbing my hand. BTW, I did admit to his mother that he only grabbed my hand, but it could as easily have been another other body part. He grabs, I jumped and semi-yelled, "Excuse me?" and he let go right fast. Personally, I think this is a good thing because it might teach him not to grab strange women, especially since I know I'm not the strangest woman out there.

That got Mom's attention and I told her that he'd grabbed my hand and the first words out of her mouth were, "He's only four." So what? It's okay if he grabs me as long as he's only four? What happens when he's eight? Or twelve? Or older? My response was vintage Carol when I said, "I don't care." Once the exchange was done, I looked at CV and told her that I was going to be the bad guy. She tsked at me and told me that I was wrong.

Nope. Mom came back holding said small child and informed me that he was a very friendly little boy and just wanted to say hi, and that I had scared him. I said, "Good" and she informed me that I wasn't a very nice person. CV's jaw had dropped because she really didn't believe that the woman wasn't making her son apologize. CV looked at me and just said that she couldn't believe I was right and we continued our conversation.

Then, out of the blue, we hear someone say, "I don't think she was out of line at all." The woman who had witnessed the entire incident was telling the mother that I wasn't the bad guy. Vindication in the form of a completely uninvolved spectator!

Let me tell you, I know four-year-olds who wouldn't dream of doing that, one of whom I'm actually willing to babysit. And I do adore my GGMM, MsJLK.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

I'm not invisible after all

There's a reason why I keep saying that whackadoodles love me.

A little background on this entire story. In Virginia, when it snows and people dig out, they will remove every single ounce of snow from their parking space. Yes, if there's been 30 inches, they will dig 30 inches down to the asphalt. I kid you not. Several years ago, people who were parked in unnumbered spaces here would dig their cars out and then place a lawn chair in the space to "save" it. Of course, someone would just get out and move the lawn chair and then take the open space, forcing that person to find a different one. Oh, well, no good deed goes unpunished.

I went out tonight for dinner and had to drive around a one-way loop to get to the space that I'd just seen someone vacate. Except these two women go running (relatively speaking) across the parking lot to stand in the middle of that empty parking space. I suppose if I were a different person, I'd have let it go and just found another space, but I was right there and they were telling me that the car was on its way and they had to drive all the way around the loop and they were going to park there. Yeah, so did I. The only way you can park there without driving around the loop is by going the wrong way on a one-way street. However, being the incredibly tactful person that I am, I said, "No. I'm here now and you aren't going to get this space unless I move and I'm not moving." I knew I could win that fight and after a brief discussion, they decided to vacate the space.

So I go inside where the restaurant (Panera, of course, where all good whackadoodles go to find me) has a communal line. I like communal lines because they are incredibly fair. You don't have to worry about having picked the line with someone who wants three smoothies and four espresso drinks. A couple of people asked if that was the line and they were told that yes, it was.

So, this one woman (guess what, she was blonde!) wanted to look at the menu, which you really cannot see from the line. Again, this is not a problem. The problem came when she was standing in front of a cashier, station ostensibly reading the menu, and the woman came back and she attempted to place an order. Yes, attempted is the correct word because I wasn't in the mood (see two women who tried to make me hit them above). I looked over and just said, "Excuse me, I'm next in line."

I imagine she and the person she was with have decided that I'm the bad guy (as usual), but line jumping is not allowed and, yes, I will stand up for what I believe is right.

Sidebar: Apparently I write good e-mail because I wrote one around 2:00 this morning that ended up being discussed on the Power Play on NHL Home Ice this afternoon. I don't think I even edited it more than once or twice.

Monday, June 27, 2011

So here I sit

I got my hair cut late last week. In fact, it was so late that only two people have seen me since the not-so-long tresses were made even shorter. Neither one of them said a word.

And they're both women.

I like to think it's pretty noticeable considering it's about two-three inches shorter, but maybe not.

I also keep looking at my Amazon contextual ads and wondering why in the world I'm getting books about the Navy. I don't think I've mentioned sailing even once (oops, there it is.)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Frozen Custard

So yesterday I went to the Dairy Godmother and had a Door County Sour on Summer Pudding, which was massively, massively good. The only issue I had was the number of small children because, no, I don't particularly like small children especially ones whose parents think that everything they do is adorable because it isn't.

So there I sat, eating my sundae and reading my book and minding my own business and I hear not one, but three, "do you have to pee? Are you sure you don't have to pee? Are you positive you don't have to pee?"  Can't you say potty? I can live with potty, but pee does not go with my sour cherries.  And then, the first monster child actually comes over and sits at my table and starts asking me questions. I know some people would be thrilled and would just talk his ear off, but I was minding my own business, I was reading my book, and I was not gazing adoringly at said child.

When does my Molly return home?

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

A little bit of everything

People come to DC to get the attention of the government and they seem to think that the best way to do it is to make a spectacle or block traffic or both. I was headed east on Rte. 50 yesterday and traffic in the right lane was NOT moving. At all. I managed to get into the lefthand lane, where traffic was moving marginally. And then I saw why. Someone decided to turn their wagon (a real, wooden wagon) into a covered wagon, complete with horses, and was headed east on Rte 50 in order to get the attention of Congress as to the plight of the small businessman. Amazingly, they stopped at the same IHOP where I decided to stop and have breakfast/lunch.

If you look closely, you can see that they had to correct the spelling of business from busin-ass to busin-ess. I felt the first spelling was rather appropriate, but then again, I'm still annoyed about the man who wanted to commit suicide by cop on the Wilson Bridge and that was 11 years ago.

Speaking of the Wilson Bridge, they've been doing beaucoup work on Telegraph Road as part of the bridge project and they've made a fascinating change as far as I'm concerned.

My complex is bounded by two roads: Huntington Ave and N Kings Hwy. Huntington gives entry to the lower part of the complex and N Kings gives entry to the upper part of the complex. Heading south on Telegraph, you would turn left at the first light for Huntington and left at the second light for N Kings. Part of the re-working was changing the exit ramps from the beltway and, they also included the intersections onto the two roads from Telegraph. So, now, I turn right at the FIRST light (rather than left at the second one) to get to N Kings Hwy and right at the SECOND light (rather than left at the first one) for Huntington. In fact, you have to get to the third light before they let you make any left turns at all. I imagine it'll make the intersection much safer when they're done.

However, I bet it's messing with lots of people are getting lost and that's pretty funny.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Silly Assumptions

So I had breakfast this morning at Panera around 6:30 a.m. I like the 6:30 crowd, it's very gentle. I'll have to try that again one of these days. Of course, it's easier to do so with my knees hurting. If you can't sleep, you might as well do something productive and this morning it was Icy Hot patches. I have never had such instant relief from pain as I get from those darned things.

Then there's my lovely knitting, which almost rated a rant yesterday. The free pattern for the Apple Blossom cardi was error free and turned out beautifully. The pattern I paid for had errata and I received an argument from the designer to boot. She insisted row 14 was a pattern row and I insisted that it wasn't. Guess who hadn't bothered to look at the pattern before telling me that and guess who was right?

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Manners on Television

As most people who know me are aware, I have recently become hooked on a couple iterations of Bravo's Real Housewives series. New Jersey is losing me, but NYC is going strong. So I just had to comment on two things that happened over the last two episodes.

As proof that having money and being part of 'society' doesn't mean having either class or manners, I present Alex McCord. (If you don't watch the show, here's the Wikipedia  link and here's the Bravo link.) Now, I'm not Miss Manners and I don't play her in real life, on television, and definitely not on the internet. However, even I know that the rudest thing you can possibly do is to point out that someone else is being rude. No matter how rude they are, pointing it out trumps their rudeness. How's that for fun? So, Alex, I hate to tell you this (well, not really), but LuAnn was right when she said that it was none of your business what transpired between herself and Ramona and you trumped everything that LuAnn did by informing her that she was rude. Of course, I have now trumped both of you, but, hey, I never pretended otherwise.

I think my favorite housewife, though, is Kelly. And that was before I found out she was from Rockford, Illinois.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Brioche, it's not just for eating

There are some absolutely beautiful two-color brioche patterns out there and as soon as I finish my Apple Blossom Cardigan for little Miss Lilly Straney (in the colorway Leid' in Hawaii -- sensing a theme here?), I'm going to start on a scarf called the Leafy Lacey Brioche Keyhole Scarf. Now I just need to pick out yarn. Maybe a brown and blue combination?

In further whackadoodle sitings, I had two live ones yesterday, both vehicular. The first was terribly unhappy with me because I was refusing to turn right on a red light. Never mind that turning right would have gotten me hit by the oncoming traffic. There the jerk sat, behind me, leaning on his horn because I wouldn't move. Maybe he didn't mind if he got his POS cracked up, but I'd rather keep my car with only about 4,500 miles on it intact, thankyouverymuch.

The second siting was sitting on the stoplight at the corner of Telegraph Rd. and North Kings Highway. His truck had broken down and apparently those decorative items, also known as hazard lights, weren't working. We sat and sat and sat at that light before it finally turned green. And that's because the sensor wasn't being tripped due to the person with the nonfunctional car sitting in place at the head of the line. Now, I'm usually willing to make allowances because there but for the grace of the FSM go I, but, again with the hazard lights are supposed to be functional, not decorative. If they'd been on, I could have turned right and gone to a different gas station.

While I'm ranting, the City of Alexandria has a racket going on. But it's a racket that can also work in my favor and I like those kinds of rackets. We've finally entered the 21st century and now have the parking machines that take credit cards and issue receipts with times and dates on them to put on your dashboard. So, yesterday, I went to my LYS and paid my $3.50 to park and here's where the racket comes in at because I left after an hour and that extra hour couldn't be used by anyone else. No more meters with five minutes left on them. Plus the hours of parking are now extended by two hours to 7:00 p.m. and the city took away the two free slots on the corner on King and Fayette right outside the LeStar Bridal. So, no free parking, no riding another person's leftover meter time, parking is more expensive at $1.75/hour instead of $1.25/hour, and if I don't use all my paid-for time, too bad, so sad. BUT!!! There is a bright side here because I can take that receipt that's good for a full two hours and park somewhere else in the Alexandria without having to invest more money into my parking. Have I mentioned how much I love finding loopholes?

Okay, off to contact a friend for breakfast. It's my first vegetarian breakfast out and it could be interesting.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Would you ask me that if I was a retailer?

Well, you might.

I have a bunch of yarn listed for sale on Ravelry. I should list more, like all of it, since I'm fully engaged in SABLE (Stash Acquisition Beyond Life Expectancy) and I've included shipping since I don't want to have to deal with calculating it and sending an invoice and everyting. Pretty nice, no?

I cannot believe the nerve that people have. I have some Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock Lightweight listed at retail, which is $22. Now I'll be the first to admit that I probably didn't pay that much for most of it because I've been acquiring it over a very long time. In any case, I paid no less than $19 per skein for it and, trust me, Tina made sure I paid shipping. Now, I don't have a problem paying for shipping. My only complaint is that sometimes I want to choose UPS instead of the USPS and I'm willing to pay for the privilege.

Along comes the Ravelry users. One person wants to buy multiple skeins and, after telling me what she wants, asks if I offer a discount for multiple skeins. Ummm... no. I'm already tossing in shipping, so suck it up.Would you ask the nice retailer (Tina, mentioned above) if she would give you a discount for multiple skeins? Or if she would forego shipping? Probably not because she's a going concern and goodness knows that knitters want her to stay in business because she  has a fantastic eye for color.

Then there was the woman who offered me $20, including shipping for a skein of yarn for which I was asking $22. Again, flat retail... what I paid... and I'm tossing in the shipping. And now you want me to take even more of a loss? The good news was that all I had to tell her was that the yarn had been sold, which it had been, and I'd forgotten to move it to my traded/gifted page. The bad news was that I really wanted to tell her where she could stick her $20. And I couldn't find a nice way to say it. Very, very, very annoying because I really wanted to tell her what I thought about her little offer.

That reminds me. I should probably put a line on my yarn for sale that says I'll give you a 10% discount if you don't make me deal with a post office.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

First post

I've had a great number of eating adventures (and other adventures) since I've been out of work and I thought this would be a great place to start sharing them because, for some reason, I seem to attract the weird ones. They range from the short, drunk man who was ready to root for Boston with me (except I was rooting for Vancouver) even though he didn't know anything about  hockey or even who the goalies were to the woman who insisted that the manager at Panera couldn't possibly know if they would be open on Christmas Eve. (She was an absolute trip.)

Then there's always the people who want to mind my business and, somehow, I'm the bad guy when I tell them that I don't need their help. I'm still working on figuring that one out.

Oh, yeah, and the occasional knitting and pug project because everyone who knows me knows I love my pugs. And orchids. I love orchids too!