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There is very little going on in my life right now (actually that’s not entirely true, but anyway), this is taking up a lot of my mental energy.  Sink in bathroom was draining slowly.   Used Drano max, which has always worked in the past—nothing.  Used Drano max again, clearly this is a job too big for Drano.

 So I slapped on my rubber gloves and got out my bucket fully prepared to fish some unsightly hair clog out of the pipe.  The pipe was pristine and clear.  So I decided to tell landlord about the issue and have a professional look at it—a professional with tools.  This was 2 Fridays ago, Friday the 11th.  By the time I asked the landlord to call the plumber, this problem has been compounding for about a month.

 Plumber comes over, Tuesday, as I’m making my PB&J to take to work, and assesses the problem.  He stops me in the middle of my jelly application to tell me that, “The problem is the sdfhjkhfsk, and I’ll have to cut into the asldfglsdhf down in the garage to get my snake in there.  It’s much more of a job than we initially thought it would be, so I’ll have to discuss it with Rick first.”

  I just blinked at him and said, “okay.”

“So, I’ll probably do it tomorrow or Thursday, when do you work those days?”

 I told him that I work/ have somewhere to be at 1pm both those days.  I almost went into detail, foolishy, about where I had to be that wasn’t work, but I realized that that is none of his business.

 “Cause I’ll probably be over here around this time… (8:30am)”

 “That’s fine.”

 “It’s kind of early…”

 8:30am is not early.  The sun comes up at 6:00 and wakes me up every damn day!  While I appreciate the fact that he must seem to think I’m some kind of “party animal”, or “person who parties all night and sleeps all day when she doesn’t have to get up and work at 9am”, that’s really not the case.  Those of you who know me know that I am not cool.  Those of you who really know me, may also know that I cannot sleep well in the summer because it’s so light out all of the time, and so hot.  Although I rarely use the time spent not sleeping to be productive, I usually sulk around complaining about the heat.  Anyway, getting up early… not really an issue.

 “Seriously, I don’t care, just talk to Rick.”

 “It’s not that bad…”

 By this point, I was getting fucking pissed, but I smiled in what I hoped was a vaguely condescending way and repeated, “Just talk to Rick.”

 By Friday, plumber had not stopped back, but I assumed he would because he almost said he would.  Went to a concert (SLOOOOOOOAN) in Minneapolis with brother and friend LeAnn, and came home in the wee hours to find that plumber had not come back, and now the sink that was “not that bad”, had stopped draining completely.  So LeAnn basically flew in from Denver to see me (and Sloan), and had to wash her hands and brush her teeth in the kitchen.  Not cool.  Maybe if we actually left the apartment, it wouldn’t have been such an inconvenience, but we don’t do that.  Again reinforcing the fact that I am not cool (I don’t know why I’m so emphatic about that today)

Why is plumber so reluctant to do his job? Is it me?  Since my mother told me for years that I should be a plumber, I’ve always felt a bit of a kinship with them.  So, I’m talking this slight very personally.  I wouldn’t want to cut into the hdkfjkgkhk and snake my drain either, which is why I got a Masters of English rather than plumber degree.  I empathize with him, but more than that, I want my sink to drain.

Talked to landlord, who said he would call plumber again.  No plumber.  Called landlord again to see if plumber gave him a date and time when I could expect him.  Landlord said, “he still hasn’t been there?”

Finally, plumber came when I was at work yesterday, in the afternoontime (apparently to let me sleep in), and now my sink drains like a dream.  I’m a little miffed that I wasn’t there because I was really looking forward to his apologizing to me, and me saying “I don’t want excuses, I want results!!” But alas that didn’t happen.

What did happen is that plumber cut into the jasdjfkhkd, and left the pieces lying in my driveway, so I nearly ran over then when I got home last night.  There are about 7 garbage cans right outside of the garage, and he just chucked these pieces of rusted pipe into the driveway.  I’m fairly convinced he did it to hurt me.

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Every now and then I get a crazy, almost manic need to go on vacation.  I can rarely afford to actually go on vacation, so I try to satiate myself by watching travel documentaries.  It doesn’t really help.  Also it’s rather difficult to get travel documentaries that are actually watchable.  A lot of them don’t want to actually tell you anything about the places you’re “visiting”, choosing instead to just shoot wide panoramic shots of old buildings– or else they star Rick Steve.

 So I turned to historical documentaries, which I also think is a sure sign that I miss being in school.  My brain has started to feel mushy, and even though I’ve been reading as much as I can, I haven’t read too many “smart” books.  As Heidi very aptly put it, I read a lot of pink/yellow books i.e. “chick lit”.  I’ve gotten away from that more recently, but still feel like I’m not learning enough.  Anyway, I checked out “Russia- Land of the Tsars” from library.  Presented by The History Channel and narrated by Edward Hermann this is sure to be a well-made and informative documentary.  And it is.

 I was happily watching and learning one night after work when I realized that I already know a lot of this stuff about Peter the Great; I’ve already seen this.  How big a geek am I that I’ve already watched a four-part documentary about the history of Russia?  No matter, it’s still very well-made and entertaining and I intend to finish it– again.

 Non sequitur

 I was working at coffee shop a couple evenings ago when this guy came in.  He was wearing a pin-striped suit and seemed inordinately pleased with himself.  Typical smarmy salesman/business major type who just turn my stomach.  I hated him or sight, naturally, and happily noticed that even though his suit was obviously new, it didn’t really fit him well.  He waltzed up to the counter and I asked what I could get for him.  “What kind of really good house wine do you have?”

 I was slightly taken aback, but quickly recovered and told him to go order his wine in the wine bar area rather than in the coffee shop.  Later I saw that he was sitting with a slightly lumpy girl in pink having a conversation that seemed a little like a job interview, and also a little like her being forced to listen to him blather on about whatever fascinating things were on his mind.  Being the nosy sort, and being that they were sitting on a place where I could easily eavesdrop, I lent them my ears just in time to hear him say, “One of the most amazing sights I’ve had the privilege to see in my lifetime is St. Paul’s Cathedral.  When I saw that dome, my breath was literally taken away.”

Oooh, I do like St’ Paul’s Cathedral, I thought, Anglophile that I am.  In fact, I recently watched a documentary about the evolution and urban planning of London that included a section on the still impressive engineering prowess Christopher Wren employed in constructing that very dome.

Then he said: “Of course, when I say St. Paul’s Cathedral, I mean the cathedral in St. Paul Minnesota.”

Is this something that people do?  Randomly assign names to things that aren’t called by those names rather than the things that are?  Also, I want to know if his St. Paul’s Cathedral is actually the Basilica, or just another cathedral in St. Paul.  I’ll freely admit that I am not that familiar with the religious architecture of the Twin Cities, but if anyone can recommend a good documentary about it, I’ll certainly watch it.

Years ago I decided to go to Minneapolis/St. Paul with my then-boyfriend for a concert of “his music” (obviously not anyone I was too jazzed to see since I can never remember what they’re called) over Memorial Day Weekend.  We rode down with his two best friends, a guy and a girl, who claimed that they were just friends, but who would start sleeping together about a year later.

 These were people I knew, had spoken to several times, but hadn’t spent a considerable amount of time with.  The fact that I didn’t really “know his friends” was quite a sore subject between then-boyfriend and I, so I figured what better way to get to know someone than to spend a long weekend with them?

 When I’ve gone on road trips with friends usually what happens is we talk.  We talk in the car, in restaurants off the interstate; when we run out of things to say the silence is comfortable, or we play mad-libs.  These people stuck then-boyfriend and I in the back seat of an SUV with a bass drum, and turned up Modest Mouse so loudly that I couldn’t hear anything but that and road noise.  The two in the front seat who would later start sleeping together could hear each other fine and conversed easily and basked in the music that they thought was great, but gave me a headache.  Then-boyfriend pulled out the copy of Anna Karenina that I had lent him and started reading.

 In an effort to really get to know his friends I had done something completely out of character, I had not brought a book.  Then-boyfriend, being a slow reader, only had the one book and refused to give it to me, “I was really looking forward to getting some reading done on this trip.”

 I watched to side of the road whip by me and vowed never again to be without a book.  I also called work to see if I had accidentally gotten scheduled so we’d have to come back a day early.  For once, no, and I resigned myself to a boring and uncomfortable weekend, but also vowed to have a good attitude and try to get along with these people who clearly were less concerned about getting along with me.  I figured once we started drinking it would be fine, usually it is.

 After we arrived in the cities, we went to a dive bar for greasy burgers (grilled cheese for me), and pitchers.  There was a sign on the wall that said something like “Even a teetotaler can feel at home in here”, something like that.  No one else knew what a teetotaler was, even though you can glean it from the context, so I told them.

“A teetotaler is a person who doesn’t drink.”

The girl looked at me and re-read the sign, “Yeah, maybe.  I think it means something else.”

I have always been “the girl who reads a lot”, or “the girl who uses big words.”  No one has ever had the audacity to tell me, incorrectly, that I don’t know what words mean.  If I didn’t, I wouldn’t make something up, I might guess, and say I don’t know.  This girl told me flat out that I was wrong about something that I was right about.

“Actually, that is what it means.”  I insisted starting to feel a little silly for pressing the point when it really wasn’t important, but needing not really the validation for everyone knowing that I was right, but more just a bit of acceptance.  Somehow, getting along with then-boyfriends friends was distilled down into this moment as if this girl represented all of them and their attitudes, and if I couldn’t make them listen about this one area that I was well-versed in, I would never fit.

She shrugged, “Maybe, but I really don’t think so.”

His friends then spoke around me for the rest of the meal, and the rest of the weekend, and even though I was told afterwards that I was fun and they really liked me and were so glad they finally got to know me, and then-boyfriend was so glad I came along; I can’t remember any of it.