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Archive for the ‘Life’ Category

It’s my favorite time on campus.  Only a week to go before finals.  The students are busy but I have some leisure to sit back and watch them fumble frantically thru the last few projects.  Occasionally I lob some encouragement or advice their way.  Of course, the last show will leave me with a mountain of laundry and restocking just when they all run off for the summer.

The costume shop seems to attract more than the usual suspects at the end of the year. Which is very gratifying; I feel very popular.  It’s also noisy and crowded.  The usual topic, besides gossip about the last show, is the possibility of pitching a reality TV show about the shop to the campus television network.

After a month of non stop work, today I did my personal mountain of laundry and dishes.  I get the laundry but I don’t know how the dishes pile up when I am mostly eating on campus.  I think the cats must be having parties in my absence.

I made the mistake yesterday of going to Trader Joe’s when both hungry and tired.  I am not sure what all I bought but the freezer is full.  It was all so exhausting that I slept all afternoon to recover.

There’s still a long to do list of things that took a back seat to the dance concert but I am quite satisfied to cross those few things off.

 

 

 

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Ch ch ch changes

I have taken a life altering step:  I have moved to California.

Why?  The opera was going thru some serious changes, which I knew I could weather, but wasn’t sure I wanted to.  I tired of working really hard when I had work and then finding myself unemployed too much of the year.  I was beginning to feel that I was too old for this.  I was going stale.

I accepted a job running the costume shop for the Theatre and Dance department and Loyola Marymount University.  Year round employment, with benefits.  Something completely new for me.  Turns out I haven’t yet reached my expiration date.

It’s about time you announced this, don’t you think?  Since It happened 6 months ago.

I know, I know, but really I haven’t  had time to write or knit or much of anything.  I got the job in late September.  Finished the show I was working on at the opera.  Stashed my belongings at my son’s house, packed the bare necessities and 2 cats into my car, waved goodbye to Georgia  and, feeling very dazed and confused, arrived in LA in mid October.

The cats were not happy about any of this but more about that later.

I spent my first few months working like crazy because I started in mid semester and had to play catch up with everything.  I stayed with a friend who lived pretty far away from school and when I wasn’t working, I was driving or sleeping.

I had a break in December which I used to look for a apartment but mostly just drove around in circles because I was always getting lost.  I did get a place and after way too much juggling of time, resources, and sanity, moved in January.  Just in time to start the next crazy round of shows.

The department normally does 6 theatre productions and 2 dance concerts.  This is manageable.  However, in 2013-14 they did 10 theatre projects requiring support from the costume shop in addition to the 2 dance concerts. I was dancing as fast as I could and then…

The academic year ended.  There are no shows during the summer and the campus is quiet.  I have some leisure time.  I don’t know what to do without deadlines.  I miss the students and the liveliness they bring to the shop.

So what am I doing now?  Because I can’t seem to stop, I got permission to work 1 show at Music Circus.  I’m in Sacramento.  Working hard.

Just the usual.

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I am on vacation.  That is, I have a bit of time off between my summer job and the opera.  I am spending it by cleaning up the cat hair and cat gack that accumulated in my apartment over the summer.  That and napping.

Yesterday I accomplished part of my to do list by cleaning and mopping the bedroom and hallway.  Then I set out to run a few errands, kitchen restocking and whatnot.  I also planned to stop by the opera and check on some things and use the internet since I cancelled mine before I left and I needed to print out some receipts and that’s not possible at the other places where I can get online.  Then I was going to meet up with the Friday night knitters.

At the opera, my key would not turn in the lock.  This is not unusual because the door is out of whack.  But, it wouldn’t work in the other door either.  No access for me.  It is now past 5pm and if people are still there I don’t want to disturb them since I am not on contract yet anyway.

I head to knitting instead.  The coffee place we meet at is empty of knitters and there is no reserved sign on our table.  I am hot and bothered.  I order a smoothie and check Facebook on my phone.  Knitting cancelled.  I also attempt to check my opera email but either the password has been changed or I simply can’t type it in correctly on my teeny tiny phone keyboard.  Another fail.

I drive home.  It is hot and I have been in California all summer where it is hot but not so unbearably muggy.  My car works better if I don’t use the air conditioning in city traffic so I have the windows down, sweltering and breathing in car exhaust from the other vehicles.

Once at home, all I want to do is lie down in my cool apartment.  I proceed to the bedroom with it’s newly clean floor and behold:  fresh cat gack.

Clearly I was just supposed to stay home and nap.

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I have now completed 2 pairs of socks.  The world did not end.  It was not a random phenomena.

What’s more:  I bought yarn on Friday to start a third pair.  I am designing this pair myself  and I am hoping it will look like a aran sweater for my feet, only in burgundy.

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Squoosh Fiberarts, Ultra Sock, superwash merino.  The color is Raison.

In other news,  the town I live in was featured in Travel and Leisure magazines as having one the most beautiful town squares in America.

http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/americas-most-beautiful-town-squares/1

This is no surprise to anyone who lives here and anyone who knows me also knows that I love where I live.  I love that it feels like a small town even though it’s surrounded by the rest of Atlanta.  I love that the Library is half a block away, that I can walk to the bank, the grocery store, or any number of great restaurants, and that the Marta train will take me most places if my car is out of whack.  I love that everyone cares what happens here and that it isn’t such a big place that it’s hard to manage well.  And I love the Courthouse square and I’m thrilled that it was noticed.

Of course, I might not be so thrilled in a month or two when tourists start showing up to hang out here instead of going to the World of Coke or the Margaret Mitchell House.  When I can’t park in front of my building or get a seat at my restaurant of choice.  When the free concerts in the park or the Art Festival are so mobbed it’s better just to stay home.  Sigh, then I might as well go brave the crowds at the aquarium or the museum myself.

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I originally started blogging because I wanted to write and blogging was less daunting than writing a novel. 

Now I know that writing a novel is a bit simpler than I used to assume it was.  Mostly you just need to do it and it helps to have a deadline.

This blog was originally about knitting in particular and life in general with occassional  interludes about my cats.  Because all the cool kids had knitting blogs and many of them had cats and some knitters with or without  cats are known to have exceptionally funny takes on life.

I still knit and I still have cats.  Sometimes I am even funny.  But I have come to the conclusion that what this blog is really about is Murphy’s Law.  Specifically, why this both amuses and befuddles me.

Why, for example, if I take my knitting, a book, and a bottle of water to the doctor with me, I am called to the exam room before I can even sit down but if I take none of these things I will be in the waiting room for 4 hours? 

If I take just the water, the bathroom will be around the corner and down the hall and I won’t be able to go because they will call my name while I am out of earshot.  I will then be there for 4 hours until I realize they thought I left and bring it to someone’s attention that why, yes I am, indeed, still waiting.

If I take just the knitting or just the book the nurse/office asst. will need to ask me lots of questions.  Or fill out lots of paperwork.  Or the office will be crowded with lots of sniffling but rowdy small children or some  loud family drama.  I will be interupted to give blood, get weighed etc as soon as I get into the middle of a row of knitting or after the first 1 or 2 paragraphs of the book.  I will have to frog everything I did while trying to ignore the family drama.  I will still have to wait to see the doctor.

I may have actually learned this lesson.

It only took you 60+ years

Because this morning I went in for a chest x ray.  I opened my bag and was deciding between reading and knitting when they called my name.  Less than 10 minutes later I was on my way.

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So the world is coming to an end, again, on December 21.  That is if you believe that the Mayans had it all figured out.  The end of time.

Apparently some people take this so seriously that they give away their possessions, contemplate suicide, and take other extreme measures.  My mother always filled our bathtub with water whenever a crisis loomed.  Just in case.  I imagine that would be her response to the end of the world too.  That and stocking up on food, books, and crossword puzzles because you could get hungry and bored waiting for the apocalypse.

The thing is, time will really only run out on the Mayan calendar.  So if you are using it exclusively as your point of reference for what day it is then yes, the world you know will end.  Because there are no more days on that calendar.

You could however, think outside the box a bit and maybe switch over to a more modern way of keeping track of linear time?  Like getting a 2013 Gregorian calendar?  or even a Hindu one?  I’m pretty sure the Hindu one goes on for eons.

No one really knows why the Mayan calendar stops on December 21, 2012.  It possible the makers ran out of room on the tablet.  I think, though, that  5000 years ago, the year 2012 was so impossibly far into the future it was inconceivable.  I’ll bet it made the calendar maker’s brain hurt to think about so he just quit before it drove him crazy.

The thing that really confuses me about doomsday prophecies is why people who are expecting to be vaporized, sucked into a chasm, or flown to heaven feel a need to give all their possessions away.

I understand why you might do this if you thought aliens were coming to take you to a better world.  Because if it’s better why would you need all that cheap tacky crap you don’t know what to do with anyway?   Then there’s the problem of how much room is really on the space ship (Tardis aside) and the possibility that under weightless conditions Granny’s antique coffee table might crack more than your knee.

Really though, if you are not going to need your stuff anymore because the world is coming to an end, then we don’t need it either.  Just let it go.

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I hate to fumble around for my keys.  Therefore I always put them in the same place:  my pocket if I am outside my front door, or the front, easily accessible, zipper pocket of my purse if I have no pockets, or on the corner of the table with my bag if I’m at home.

So Thursday morning I took a little extra time in the morning because I have spent all my waking hours at the opera for more than a couple of weeks and I deserve it.  I slept in as much as the cats would allow and after checking emails and the like I gathered up what I needed for the day.  My kitchen trash can was full, plus I needed to toss the box my cute little birthday cake came in.

It was shaped like a tiny hat with a wee little flowers on top and it was delicious.  Hand delivered to the stage door before dress rehearsal on my birthday.  Thank you Diana and Laury.  No picture because, well, I ate it before it occurred to me to take one.

I picked up my purse, the canvas bag with my lunch and other essentials, the bag of trash, my car key with its little black clicker, the large bundle of other keys, and the cake box.  I tried to fold up the cake box but it kept sliding apart and trying to slither out of my hands.  I grabbed it tighter and forced it into a folded shape while it tried desperately to escape.  I just managed to lock my front door without losing my grip on anything.

Once outside I headed down the leaf covered steps, past the maintenance guy sweeping the steps, down the sidewalk to the trash bins.  Here I ran into a bit of a snag as I attempted to raise the lid of the trash bin while holding 2 bags and keys in one hand and the trash bag and cake box in the other.  Even when one is only dealing with a trash bag there’s something about the size and placement of the bin that makes opening it with one hand difficult.  I put my keys in my coat pocket and set down my bags.  After some fumbling, I finally got the lid open enough to shove my trash in.  The cake box sprung back to it’s original shape and flew out of my hands. I reached in my pocket for my car keys and the other keys were there but not the car keys. !@#$

This cannot be, I tell myself.  I never lose my keys.  Plus I only have one key for my car, no backup, no copies.  I check my jeans pockets.  I check the outer pocket of my purse.  I look around on the ground.  No tell-tale black clicker anywhere.  I check all my pockets again.  They have to be here.

I retrace my steps.  I ask the guy sweeping to watch for them, thinking they may have dropped into the leaves or fallen out of my shallow coat pocket on the way to the trash.  I go back inside my apartment.  I check my purse thoroughly.  I check the table again.  I look around the front door where I set down the trash bag while I opened the door.

Could they have slid out of my hands and into the trash bin?  !@#$  I have to check.

I check the front steps again.  My eyes scour the sidewalk and the area around the bins.  Please let them be here, please don’t make me do this.

I open the bin.  There’s my bag of trash and the cake box plus some fast food trash and a few other repulsive looking odds and ends.  I pick my bag out and set it aside.  I can’t quite reach the other stuff.  I tip the can toward me, the edge  is greasy.  I have to lean in but I find I can use the cake box to push the other bits around.  I get to the bottom.  No keys.  I feel slimed.

Trash bag returned to bin, I check the surrounding area again.  I peer over the edge of the steps.  Maybe they were swept over the edge onto the lawn.  Not.

Back in my house, I am icky and must wash.

Then I check my pockets again.  I check everywhere in the house they could possibly be.  Even places I didn’t go near that morning.

I am forced to conclude that they slid into my trash bag.  More ick.

On my way back out I look thru the leaves, around the mailboxes and the trash bins, and I check my pockets, again.

I pull my bag of trash out of the bin.  I tip the can toward me and lean in, up to my waist, again.  Decide if I must do this again, I will bring a broom or some other long object with me so I can sift thru the slime without having to crawl into the can.  Still no keys.

I take the trash back to my apartment where I can sift it into another garbage bag without putting my neighbors on alert.

911?  There’s this  weird crazy woman  who looks like she’s playing in the trash 

After washing up, again, I am not ready to dig around in yet more trash.  I dump my purse out on the sofa and check all the pockets inside.  Nope.  I dump out my tote bag.  Lunch, water, umbrella, no keys.  I dig into the outside pockets of the tote bag.

Eureka!

I spent my morning dumpster diving for my keys, twice and they were some where clean, dry and slime free all along.

The saddest, funniest thing I did all day.  Maybe ever.

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