Monthly Archives: January 2003


Once, when I worked in the Pediatric Clinic, there was a giant roach making its way over the wall in the lobby. No one wanted to get it while patients were there…something about causing a scene, etc.

Around lunch time, I got a sheet of paper and scooped it off the wall, but the roach was so heavy, the paper bent (like an overloaded paper plate at a buffet) and the roach fell into the floor. I covered it with the paper and stepped on it. Then it was stuck to the carpet and I couldn’t scrape it up with the paper. I threw that stepping-on paper away. Then I got a fresh sheet of paper and wrote “ROACH” in big letters and drew an arrow pointing left. I placed the paper to the right of the flattened roach so others would be alerted to its presence and not step on it.

It was there for over an hour before my supervisor discovered it. For some reason, she didn’t think that’s the way the scenario should have been handled.



I spent the evening of my birthday dealing with frozen water pipes. It was four below zero for most of the day and there’d been no water since Sunday morning. The worst part was not being able to flush. The second worst part was that the drain from the washing machine froze up during an actual load of laundry on Sunday. So I gathered buckets of snow to melt in a stock pot on the stove, then poured the hot water down that drain to break up the ice. At that point, I was able to run the spin cycle so I could at least drain the water out of the machine and transfer the frozen mass of clothes over to the dryer. The electric pipe warmer was plugged in and on, but still no water. I was too exhausted and cold to make any more trips outside for more snow to melt for the commode…one giant bucket of snow only got me an inch of water once it melted.

On Tuesday, Mr. Capp showed up at my office with a birthday card. I thanked him and Karen asked him if he wasn’t just a “little” late with the birthday wishes. There was a feeble attempt at covering, a la “isn’t THIS the 27th?!” etc. Incredibly, no, it was the 28th. Whatever.


Here I am at work, and it’s after 4:30. Everyone else gets a half-day off on their birthday. However, I elected not to be a member of the so-called “Birthday Club”, so I guess my punishment for non-participation is having to work the whole day.

The Birthday Club started out innocently enough…at the main warehouse, people would pay fifty cents per bi-weekly paycheck and then on their birthday, all the members would troop into the break room and feed on cake and ice cream. Since there aren’t enough people to support such extravagance at the computer store, a method was devised where each employee was responsible for bringing in a card for everyone else to sign, and enough goodies for everyone to eat…with some special food designated by the Birthday Person. I never wanted to join up, but was given no choice in the matter. Each person got a reminder from the Birthday Club Organizer the day before they were to bring something in…until the day *I* was supposed to bring in stuff for the resident druggie. Someone off-handedly commented around 11:05, “Isn’t this her birthday?” Ms. Drug Seeker has just gone to lunch, and I wigged out. I dashed to the local grocery store, overpaid for a card and three cakes, rushed back to work, only to find out she’d taken her half day off. She was so angry at having been “forgotten” and I was so upset at having forgotten. We had the “festivities” the next day, but it wasn’t the same. She was grumpy the whole time and didn’t speak to me for months.

The next January, when the BC was being reorganized (so folks don’t have to “sponsor” the same co-worker each year), I asked to NOT be included. Incidentally, so did Ms. Drug Seeker. I never wanted to be in it, anyway, but I felt even worse that I had let someone down. Especially since some people clearly view birthdays with more importance than I do. She wanted out because “no one” remembered anyway. I was perturbed with the Organizer for not reminding me, but I should have kept up with the date. Now THIS January, the BC has been reorganized and Ms. Drug Seeker has gotten back in because I said I still didn’t want to participate!! I am no longer a threat to forgetting her birthday, I guess!!

Another of my co-workers wished me happy birthday this morning, and my boss half-not-jokingly told them they weren’t allowed to mention my birthday, as I’m not a member of the BC. A vendor rep came by and called happy birthday through my door. This time, my boss said that she couldn’t wish me a happy birthday because SHE wasn’t a member of the BC. What’s up with that?


The times listed are always so weird here. It’s 01/26/2003 at 11:25 as I’m writing this. I’ve changed the settings and everything, yet it says I’m three hours earlier than I really am, or three hours later. Maybe I’ll figure it out another day.

Hmmm…now that I’ve sent this, the times have corrected themselves. Go figure! 🙂


All I wanted to do today was spend the day in bed with some Ibuprofen every four to six hours. I read some of the newspaper, some of Pale Fire by Nabokov, and some of Worth magazine (which just served to depress me about all the people my age who have so much money they don’t know what to do with it). I took a nap, but got up in time to watch the Super Bowl.

It kept snowing outside, so I checked the listings to see if work was called off tomorrow. It’s ridiculous to check, because it is never called off. In the thirteen years I have worked there, we have had ONE snow day, and that was only because the Mayor declared a State of Emergency and shut down the whole city. Otherwise, we would have been expected to show up…to serve the zero people who could actually make it through the drifts to our door.

Tomorrow is my birthday. I’d really rather not have it. I fell like I’m on some downhill slope now. If I don’t get with it, it’ll be over before I can do anything about it.


This afternoon, I applied for a part-time job at the Shell Mart. I almost passed out from holding in the fit of laughter caused by the clerk asking if I was “over 21”. I thought it in my best interest not to have some sort of laughing seizure over it and just said, “Yes, Ma’am”. She gave me the application and I filled it out in the car. When I brought it back inside, the manager had just gotten there. I gave the paper to her and she looked it over for the longest time. Then she asked, “Are you looking for part-time work?” I said yes, and refrained from pointing out where I had circled “part-time” on the application. Well, they only had openings for full-timers who could split shifts at the drop of a hat. As if. All that and $6.00 an hour for full-time work. Not! I politely declined and asked her to “keep me in mind” if they had any part-time openings later. I didn’t tell her I thought they should amend the “Now Hiring” sign out front to “Full Time Only”.


It is about zero degrees outside. Even so, I stood in the parking structure for thirty minutes after work talking to Karen. We can’t talk at work because it’s like elementary school there. If any other person gets the idea that someone else is enjoying themselves, they tell on you, because they didn’t think of it first.

My birthday is Monday. I dread it.