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April 19, 2005 - 10:02 am

MY REALLY CRAPPY WEEK AND OTHER INSPIRATIONAL ANECDOTES

I don’t have a dresser yet, so my clothes are in cardboard boxes turned on their sides and stacked up. I don’t have any bookcases yet either, so I can’t finish unpacking until I get some. Not really a big deal, I guess. Just a warm up for bigger and better complaints.

I found out from Butch, the gay antique dealer in the space adjacent to mine, that the owner of the building where we rent space is telling tenants they have to pay property taxes on the building. What the...? If I'd wanted to pay property tax on a building I'd have bought one. Okay maybe not, but you see my point. I've paid taxes on all the stuff I OWN inside the space, but I don't own the damn building. It is not my property, and I will not be paying those taxes. Fuckers.

Sorry.

Earl, the 50+ redneck maintenance guy with a lisp who has been so nice and responsive in getting stuff done for me over the past few weeks, left his pipe cutter at my house, and when I called him to let him know, he said he was impressed that I even knew what it was, and then he actually said he’d left it there on purpose so he’d have an excuse to come by and see me again. Yikes. Then when I was out Saturday night he left me a message on my home phone “just to check in on how you’re doing” which had a subtle and indefinably inappropriate tone, possibly because I could see his leering, sideways glance all the way through the phone and because he’s dropped a few less than subtle hints on how fabulous he thinks I am because he’s seen me use tools (operating a cordless drill hardly qualifies as numbchuck skills) and am obviously “just a good old country girl underneath.” Great. That’s all I need. A stalker who knows I live alone and has a key to my house. And – god forbid – thinks I’m a little bit country.

My brakes are completely gone so I had to use my parking brake to stop for a few days until the dealership could fit me in. Opting out of a power slide into the dealership, I had my uber-car towed into the shop and rode up front in the cab with James, the way too chatty tow-truck driver/hairdresser/ carpenter who was a dead ringer for Eminem (after severe muscle atrophy due to years of serious crystal meth use, I should add), just so the Saab mechanic could tell me I need new pads and rotors, thanks to the weak parking brake which now needs repair. I also need four new tires! and an alignment! and there’s a short in the brake light wire which has been causing one of my brake lights to burn out every few weeks! All this is in addition to the scheduled maintenance charge of $900. So I’ll be picking up my car in exchange for $2,500. I don’t have credit cards, and I have to tell you that really hurts. I’m sure we’ve all been there before, but it hurts more this time because IT’S ME, NOT YOU.

But the clincher is that my beloved cat, Toulouse, disappeared from the new house Thursday night and has been missing now for five nights and four days. I put up thirty posters offering a $100 reward over the weekend and knocked on at least ten doors. I accosted everyone I saw on the street between my new house and John’s house thinking he may have headed back there. John even came over to look for him last night. But nothing. Toulouse’s absence has thrown me over the proverbial edge. I’ve been a complete basket case this weekend and had a genuine panic attack at Twisted Taco Saturday night. But that may have been from the sardine-style accommodations, the two bachelorette parties going on (they were off to a great start, I have to tell you), and the hip-hop karaoke performances more than anything else. When will I learn how much bars freak me out?

Okay, here’s the portion of our program where I cheer myself up and remind you why you love me.

Here's a picture of my new red house:

Each kid has their own room, the back yard is great, and I’m in walking distance of both the elementary school and my office. I even have my OWN bathroom. Plus the house is actually finished, with painted siding and REAL glass in the windows instead of plywood or broken glass (unlike the house I just left), and the few things that needed to be fixed have already been done. Granted, they were done by Earl the Potential Stalker who, for all I know, installed hidden cameras while he was at it, but, nonetheless, they’re done.

Then (in case you didn't notice it in the driveway above) the Saab dealership gave me this incredible car to drive this weekend, and I still have it. It had 125 miles on it when I drove it off the lot…stopping only briefly to put the top down with the press of a button. I think they were just trying to soften the blow of the bill. Coincidentally, this weekend we had perfect convertible weather AND this was John’s first weekend with the kids. Hardly worth $2,500, but fun all the same. The kids came home dirty and scraped, but alive and happy.

And, you know, I have to admit I did have a pretty good time at that bar when I wasn’t hyperventilating. Kristie is one of my many good friends who keep trying to get me to go out more, and Saturday night she was right. We danced like fools and stayed up way too late at her house (evidently while Earl was trying to reach me) going through old pictures of us when we were like fifteen and had absurdly silly hairstyles.

As for Toulouse’s disappearance, I’ve got nothing on the bright side to make it worth reading to the end of this entry. Save yourself; stop reading now.

Driving around in a fancy car is pretty depressing when you’re looking for the best cat who ever lived. Everyone’s trying to tell me stories of how their cat was gone for a month once and finally came home, how cats are great at living outside on their own, and Toulouse is a big, strong cat; he’ll be fine, and he’ll come home when he’s ready, blah, blah, blah. But I’ve dreamed of him every night he’s been gone and feel guilty as hell for being careless enough to let him slip out when I knew how stressed he’s been since the move. I have a terrible feeling in the pit of my stomach that he’s gone forever, and I can’t help crying every time I think he may not be coming home.

Did I mention tomorrow's appointment with the dermatologist to biopsy a possible skin cancer on my calf? No? I guess it slipped my mind because MY CAT IS MISSING.

~Samantha

recommended:
reading -Desser the Best Ever Cat by Maggie Smith
viewing - Flight of the Phoenix, hands down, the Worst Movie Ever Made.
listening -"Keep on the Sunny Side" by the Whites

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