Tuesday, November 14, 2006

It’s finally happened

I reached to get my wallet this morning, and as my finger slid past the top of my jeans pocket, the denim ripped my cuticle away from my nail and I bled like a televangelist on a meth binge. (I don’t know first-hand that televangelists bleed when they smoke their man-hookers’ crack, but I wanted to work in a Ted Haggard joke while it was still somewhat timely.)

In any case, my first ripped cuticle heralds the end of moist summer air and signals the beginning of the winter bleeding season. Break out the Band-Aids and put away the white pants.

So much has happened in the last week that I don’t know where to begin. First of all, the new job is keeping me so busy I can barely squeeze in a workout and a dinner before I tumble into bed each night. It’s a good, productive kind of busy, but it’s drastically cutting into my blogging and snuggling-with-the-boyfriend time. So bear with me, dear blog readers (and dear boyfriend), while I find the equilibrium between my new job and my regularly scheduled life.

I went home to Iowa last weekend for my uncommonly photogenic niece’s fifth birthday. She’s in her Disney princess phase (which makes me so proud I could grow a tail) and she received enough Disney princess-themed presents that she could open her own Disney princess outlet mall. Not that any self-respecting Disney princess would be caught dead in an outlet mall, but scores of Disney princess wannabes need a place to find marabou-covered plastic shoes and breakable tiaras, so I think my niece could make some serious coin off such a venture should she choose to pursue it. In any case, my sister found her a gorgeous champagne-colored ball gown (on sale!) patterned after Belle’s final Beauty and the Beast ensemble, only this gown has a red velvet-like overlay that ups the glamour quotient exponentially. You’d think that wearing such a gown would infuse my niece with an air of patrician noblesse, but she still crawled around like a tomboy Saturday night when she put it on. Which totally slowed her down in her pursuit of fun, but she was NOT about to take it off. As a princess, she has people who need to adore her, so she was kind of obligated to keep the thing on all night.

While I was home, I also got to take my seven-year-old nephew to his tae kwon do class, where he impressed me with his mastery of the poomse sequences, but the poor little guy has miles to go mastering other body-awareness-requiring skills like staying on his little black X during warm-ups and not falling over doing his kicks. He’s already a yellow belt, though, and he has a hard time disguising his pride when he carries around his bag of “gear.” Which makes him so cute I could hug him, but I don’t know what he’s been learning in that class and he could probably kill me with his bare hands. So I keep a respectable distance.

The other notable weekend event in Iowa was Shadow’s funeral. After my nephew’s dog was killed by a hit-and-run driver last week, his folks had Shadow cremated, and my nephew and my dad built her a little cremation urn in my dad’s basement workshop. They fashioned a sturdy wooden cube out of scrap wood, and they labeled it with a jigsawed bone shape that my nephew wrote “Shadow” on in his shaky little handwriting. We had a simple burial (just close family) in my folks’ back yard on Saturday afternoon, where my nephew declared Shadow “a good dog” in his eulogy. I guess it’s never too soon to learn about the randomness of death and life—although the kids lost their aunt earlier this year, so I think the dog was taking it a bit too far—but I’m having a hard time shaking my anger at the truck driver who killed a pretty big dog and was either too stupid or too cowardly to stop and acknowledge what he did.

But I’m able to channel my anger at the developers of my Two-Bathroomed Barbie Dream Condo, who this week finally admitted that their ongoing construction delays will probably take them to March before people can start moving in. So my Realtor and my attorney and I are busy trying to get out of my contract and find me a new place I can move into before bleeding season is over—or at least before the Republicans officially (finally!) lose the House and Senate. Fortunately, the housing bubble has burst, people are looking to unload a glut of properties in Chicago, and I’m able to move immediately (during holiday season, no less)—assuming I get out of my contract and get my deposit back—so I should be able to get a pretty sweet deal on an even better Two-Bathroomed Barbie Dream Condo. The hunt starts again this Saturday.

I’ll definitely keep you posted—in another month when I find a moment to make my next blog post.

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