Friday, September 30, 2005

Apparently Her Purpose Was Meth

Remember a couple months ago when the Fulton County Courthouse was shot up? The suspect fled and ended up taking a woman and her daughter hostage before she convinced him to turn himself in by reading him passages of A Purpose Driven Life.

It wasn't so much the moving words of Rick Warren that convinced the convinct to do well, but rather the meth she gave him. That's right. The woman used drugs not hugs. Did she tell the police this as they were handling the man? No. When did this come up?

Months later when it's time to sell her book. Suddenly she tells us the truth and we are to know that she was a meth addict. And also using meth with her child at home. Something that the new news reports haven't really bothered to mention.

They will, however, tell us of her own fight against drugs and how a car accident was caused when she heard a voice tell her (while on drugs, mind you) to "Let Go and Let God."

I'm becoming more and more cynical of people and their publicity schemes. To try and look good this woman said that she was reading a book that makes millions of dollars off of people's beliefs. When that didn't garner enough attention, she tells us the truth about the meth because, frankly, it's a sexier story and will help her get a piece of the pie.

Don't buy either book. Just get a Bible and some meth and play the at-home game.

Oh and it's Day 5 of showering in filth and last night the toilet starting running for no apparent reason every 60 seconds for a duration of 10 seconds. I almost couldn't sleep. I called Shelly the apartment manager today. The conversation went something like this:

Me: Yes, Shelly. This is Ashley. Have you received the part that was supposed to be ordered five days ago to repair the shower?

Shelly: Oh, I haven't asked the maintenance man about that.

M: Well, you need to and when you do, please let him know that now our toilet is running every 60 seconds for 10 seconds causing it to be hard to flush.

S: Okay, I'll let him know (snidely and trying to get me off the phone quickly).

M: Great. I'm looking forward to having him out there. (Equally sarcastically)

This is going to be a long year.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Stop with the crappy celebrity nicknames

Is anyone else tired of crappy celebrity couples having their names combined into one cutesy name?

Damn you Bennifer!! You started a trend that lasted longer than your relationship and it's horrible. And the fact that Ben Affleck married another Jen (although admittedly an upgrade: Jennifer 2.0) is a little gross to me. It's like dating someone with the same name as your brother. It's not their fault, but it's always going to be there in your mind.

Let's look at the latest list of crappy combinations:
  • TomKat: First of all, her name is KATIE. It's not Kat. I'm sure she's never been called "Cat" in her life. I think Tom Cruise's people thought this one up, because it brought to mind a virile, promiscuous man. Yet another way for him to try and convince us he's straight.
  • Brangelina: That breakfast cereal that surpassed Colon Blow and Super Colon Blow as most ass-wrenching.
  • Dashmi: The kid in your high school that was from somewhere unspecified in the Middle East and always claimed that he was a prince of some sort to try to score chicks.

It's getting a little ridiculous.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Bathing in Someone Else's Filth

Three or four months ago as Chef and I were starting our cohabitational bliss, we noticed a drop coming from the ceiling in the bathroom. Above our showerhead was an area of ceiling that was moist and soggy to the touch. In fact, after touching it, it gave way to a drop drop drop. Every time the upstairs tenant took a shower, the dripping would begin.

We called maintenance and on several occasions had to answer the question: "Which leak is it again?" because we had a leak in the kitchen from the roof (keep in mind that we are on the bottom floor of a two-story complex).

On two separate occasions, the visit from a maintenance man went like this:
  1. Maintenance came out and looked at the bathroom.
  2. Maintenance man says "I need to order a part for that."
  3. Maintenance man leaves and does not return.
  4. Call apartment office and repeat process.

We hadn't noticed the leak for a month. Then again, there was not a person living above us taking a shower for the last month either. We had though asked our condescending bitch of an apartment manager if she would call maintenance to come and repair the moldy ceiling as the last time they were here they claimed to have completed the job. Of course, I was naive enough to believe this despite the fact that I saw no work being done.

So when the dripping was spotted this morning, I was pissed beyond belief. The rental office still had the nightly answering service on at 8:15 a.m., despite opening at 8. And so I left my name, number and problem with the night operator who classified it as an emergency and said that the office would get right to me.

They didn't get to me or even call, so I called back. It literally took 5 phone calls to get maintenance out there to say they have to order a part.

In the mean time, the water that's leaking through the ceiling was confirmed by the maintenance man to be my worst nightmare: the upstairs drain run-off. This is both bad news (uh, GROSS) and good news because now it's not only a county property upkeep violation, but the drain water makes it a health code violation in terms of our county sanitation laws.

Plus I'm getting a baptismal sprinkling of foul neighbor water every time I step in the shower. I love Chef and I wouldn't share his bath water, so I sure as hell don't want some strangers floating ass mater raining down on me.

And I want the apartment manager to pay, as well, for her shitty attitude. I'm thinking of saving my used bath water for the week and loading a supersoaker full of it to spray her with. Maybe I should wait until next week when it would be messier.

Friday, September 23, 2005

Smelly Office

I'm having a good day this morning. The press has been kind to us at an event last night (really a pre-event--one of those endless streams of cocktail parties that celebrate every aspect of the actual event: patrons, kick off, sneezing. That kind of thing). We were not quoted in an article on the impact of Katrina to non-profits, but our event got listed and gained extra publicity. All good things.

I was cranking right along this morning. Getting stuff done and checking stuff off my list. And then the door buzzer went off. Our office is not in, say, the high rent district. In fact, most of us would prefer not to be around here after about 7 p.m. While usually the most annoying thing we get is a lost out-of-towner trying to find their doctor, we also get some other things. The occasional stray animal. The homeless guy with his shopping cart of cans. The woman that walked up to me in the parking lot and asked me if she could have the knee-high leather boots I was wearing. Things like that.

Today, however, was a good one. A guy rang the buzzer and lowered his face to the intercom. In doing so, I was able to see his face. He couldn't see into my office, but it is very close to the front door and the when someone does that particular manuveur it usually catches my attention. It feels like someone is looking over my shoulder. I looked up and saw a very scruffy, obviously weathered man. He asked to use our restroom. We do not have a public restroom.

The girl at the front desk let him in. Apparently she is not aware that we actually got the front door buzzer/ intercom after a similar incident turned borderline violent. I guess it was more threatening than anything.

I was pissed because my office is not on the first one that would get attacked if there was a random shooting, but also right next to said bathroom. She pointed to it and he walked by peering into my office as he went in.

The other thing about my office being next to the bathroom is that I can usually hear everything. While I can't hear peeing, I can hear loud grunting, exceptionally loud plops, flushing and the sink. All of which I heard this time. The smell was so bad that it permeated the surrounding area before he even left. He also used the sink and our liquid soap to give himself a shower, as the sink was on a long time, his hair was wet when he left and there were about 100 used paper towels in the garbage.

Before you call me heartless, think of these two things:
  1. How would you feel if your office smelled like poop and body odor because a homeless man came and took a whore's bath in the restroom that is about 5 feet from your desk?
  2. There is a shelter literally two blocks from here that provides FREE OF CHARGE showers and cleansing materials to those in need.

So after he leaves, I'm pissed at the person who let him in. It was obvious that he was not coming here for business purposes. When one of the people who's office is two down from me complained about the smell, she started laughing incessantly until I told her that if she didn't stop, I would move her desk into the bathroom and see how she liked it.

The long of the short of it is: My office smells like feces and body odor. Still.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

In God We Trust

Have you ever gotten an email and wondered why you were sent it? Like the penis enlargement spam when you're a girl? Like you would buy the stuff and sneak it into your significant other's food I Love Lucy style ?

Anyway, I got a rant on the fact that "In God We Trust" is being taken down from post office walls. In response to that, the bottom of the email read as follows:

"It has been reported that 86% of Americans believe in God. Therefore, I have a very hard time understanding why there is such a mess about having "In God We Trust"on our money and having God in the pledge of Allegiance.

Could it be that WE just need to take action and tell the 14% to "sit down and shut up"?"



I know one of the 86% that I want to tell to sit down and shut up. Considering Christianity is globally not the majority religion, under this same philosophy couldn't China or India invade the US and tell the population to stick their Crosses and Big Macs where the sun don't shine?

And what kind of action are they wanting to take? Will there be heavily armed militia? Will they come after minorities next? There will always be people that don't believe in the same things that they do so this could go on for a while.

Here are a few things that I believe and am willing to knock off people for:

  1. I believe people who have stuffed animals in the back of their cars should be forced to work at Build-A-Bear until stuffing comes out of their asses.
  2. I believe that people who stop on a busy street to let a car cross TWO lanes of traffic and risk their life because the second lane isn't stopped, should have to pay any incidental insurance costs.
  3. I believe that if it takes you longer than 2 minutes to order at a fast food restaurant, you should automatically get cold food. Come one people. The menus don't change.
  4. I believe that if someone ruins a taped TV show or sporting event or book for you, you are allowed to make them endure 3 hours of your most heinous guilty pleasure in retaliation.
  5. I believe people who wait at the door or pace while someone is on the phone at their office should know they could be legally shot for doing so.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Little Baby Jesus

Over the last couple of days, I've gotten about 400 more visits to my blog than normal. I know I'm linked somewhere on aol, I just don't know where.

In an effort to find out what I was being linked for, I looked at blogpatrol to figure out what people were searching for. Let's just say that I was a little weirded out. While some of the searches were mundane ("beckon call and beck and call"), other capitalistic ("simply socks yarn company"), the majority of searches prove that porn truly does rule the net.

Apparently I talk about boobs, shaving, and mik bags too often. My second most searched terms included Jesus and other religious words that I rarely use. Again, porn and piousness all together in one happy home.

This weekend for the 4th time, my brother, sister-in-law and stepdad got together to walk in my mother's memory at the Komen Race for the Cure. It's been five years since she lost her fight with cancer. The first year the walk happened less than a month after mom died. It was too much. The second year I was lucky enough to have She-Ra and her family there to help me through. Now instead of feeling sad, I feel proud. I'm happy that my family still gets together to do something in her memory.

If you get a chance to go to a Race for the Cure or Relay for Life or Heart Walk or Memory Walk or any kind of walk or run for charity, do it. Do it for someone who's survived, someone who's died, someone you care about. You'll be surprised how much you might be touched.

Monday, September 19, 2005

The Apocalypse is Coming But at Least There's Free Coffee

Why is the apocalypse coming? Because IU Football is 3-0. In fact, as I like to tease my Tennessee friends, IU currently has a better record in the SEC than UT does.

Not only is IU Football 3-0, but so is Vanderbilt Football. Let me put this in perspective for you:
  • Vanderbilt has not won three games in a row in 6 years
  • Vanderbilt has not been 3-0 in 21 years (Reagan was president)
  • Vanderbilt is leading the SEC and has not done that in 51 years (Eisenhower was president)

That's a long time to suck. It's just an odd football season. The weekend would've been perfect with the underdogs and the Colts winning, but the Titans won. The thing about that is the Exxon Tigermarkets around town have half-price coffee every Monday and FREE COFFEE every Monday after a Titans win. Mmmmm, Pumpkin Spice is even the flavor of the month.

On another note for those of you who hate football, Chef and I celebrated one year together last Friday. Actually, that should be another sign that the apocalypse coming. I'm in a long-term relationship and loving it. Anyway, he got me two of the most thoughtful, beautiful presents that I've ever received. It was a great anniversary...my first celebrated with any guy unless you count the tumultuous 3 month affair I had in 7th grade with Ben Hopkins. I think we celebrated like a week anniversary.

Program note: Arrested Development starts tonight, so be sure to watch it!

Thursday, September 15, 2005

And Publicity for Her Perfume to Boot

Britney Spears had her baby yesterday. A boy that they reportedly named Preston something or other. After making a comment on wanting surgery to have the kid, Britney did just that and gave birth through Caesarean.

Why is this important? Because Caesareans can be planned out in advance. And let's say that you have a new fragrance that's hitting markets on Sept. 15th. And let's not forget the upcoming drop of the wretched 'Chaotic' DVD. UPN rushed to put it on for May sweeps and America rushed outside to enjoy the good spring weather.

If she's taking lessons from Madonna on marketing and publicity tie-ins, she's just trumped the material girl. I don't think Rocco or Lola were born in the midst of the Blonde Ambition Tour.

This could be merely coincidence. But I doubt it.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Albino Monkey-Loving Travel

I was watching Bravo the other day and this commercial came on. There were two nicely dressed men . One had a handsome young man as a boyfriend and the other had an older more stately gentleman as his boyfriend. They were playing that gameshow that's sweeping the nation "Book That Travel" and they were booking travel and accommodations to San Francisco.

I thought it was a Geico commercial. It wasn't. It was an ad for Orbitz's Special Gay Travel section. Which lead me to ask a lot of questions:

  • Are gays the new women and children? Is this a new marketing niche for companies to try and swindle?
  • Are there special needs in conjunction with gay travel?
  • How did Bravo become the gay channel?

Really, how did Bravo become the gay channel? Yes, I realize it became a hit because of Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. And yes, My Life on the D List does include a litany of "Best Gays," but do you think Bravo realized that by airing Good Will Hunting 12 times a week and having shows about fashion designers and male hair stylists , they would become the premiere channel for Orbitz's evil plot to dominate gay travel? Wouldn't style. or Oxygen work just as well or has Oprah put the kabbash on it?

How many sterotypes of gay people can we possibly play into?

  1. All gay people want to go to San Francisco.
  2. Moderately attractive gay men almost always have a younger promiscuous boyfriend.
  3. Ugly, older gay men get the college professor-types that come out late in life.
  4. Fashion, hair and celebrities are all that gay men care about.

Why hasn't anyone cared about this yet? Barbie said "Math is Hard" and Gloria Steinem was on her ass before the string had recoiled back into Barbie's body.

Damn you, Orbitz. And damn you too, Zellweger.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Not on The Market Any More

For those of you who still like to torment me about my desperate use of a certain celebrity to spark an interest in my fantasy life, you'll be happy to know that he's engaged. It's sad, but even in my fantasies, I can't commit adultery. Besides, I've got a real guy now that requires no conjuring or enchanted pouches to lure in.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Stop the Video Game before I Throw Up

When someone says to me, "You're becoming more like your mother each day" I normally am proud of this fact. She was a smart, funny and organized woman who had her faults. All in all though, I'd be lucky to end up like her.

However, never did I realize that that would include her tendency to have motion sickness. As a kid, I'd always laugh and wonder why mom didn't ride the rides with us at amusement parks. Then my brother, dad and I would join together to tease her about it.

This seemed funny until about a year ago. My friend Lisa and I were having a drink at Jonathan's and thought that the carnival in the mall parking lot looked like a good time. So, we headed over, coughed up some money and rode a couple of rides. The standard Tilt-a-Whirl, a Scrambler and the Ring of Fire. Never in my life have I been that motion sick. I was so sick that I went home and went to bed at 10 o'clock (which was unheard for me at that time).

Not really had another bout since then, but I also haven't been whipped around in anything that would cause me to be sick. But yesterday Chef bought an Xbox game called Super Monkey Ball Deluxe. It's like a more fun version of Sonic the Hedgehog, which I loved as a kid. When I was playing, I didn't really have much of a problem. When I was watching Chef, I ended up getting as sick. It felt like motion sickness.

I feel so old. I got motion sickness from a video game. Watch out 30s. I'm going to be a ball of fire.

Friday, September 09, 2005

The season has started already?

Has this new fall season snuck up on anyone else? I spent so much time begrudgingly finding alternative things to do and watch while the shows were on hiatus that I forgot that the season premieres will be happening in the next week or two.

New Gilmore Girls, Arrested Development and The Apprentice, hurray! I'm actually looking forward to it now that I remembered. However, I'm wondering what to Tivo since I'll still be watching The Amazing Race. Hell, on some nights I'll get two hours worth. Plus they're having a fantasy football-like game to accompany it.

I'm somewhat holing up this weekend. Although I did manage to get Chef to come shopping with me on Sunday. We're shopping for him, so it made it a little more worth his while. I'm trying not to get too excited otherwise, I'll push my luck and run him out of the mall screaming in an hour. And everyone knows that you just can't get through Shopryland in an hour. That's right. I'm taking him to the big Daddy of the malls. Again, I'm going for it all.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

It's Not Me, It's Definitely You

I saw this on MSN and had to read it. I also had to add on my own reasons that someone at work could be annoying:

  • You plop your ass down in someone else's office to "talk" and it lasts 30 minutes...even though who you're talking to has started typing or answering phone calls.
  • You say the same thing every day to the same person and expect a different response. (ie. "You should get some lights in here." "I have lights. I just don't like to use the overhead lighting."
  • You send the same five forwards every day.
  • You go to the bathroom with nothing on your feet except pantyhose.
  • You say "Hope we didn't scare you too much to come back tomorrow" to someone on their first day.
  • You interrupt someone's conversation from three cubicles away to interject a question not relating to the original conversation.
  • You have an obnoxiously loud phone voice.
  • You refer to yourself or your position in third person.
  • You questions with the preface "I know you're not the right person to ask, but..."
  • You shovel work with the preface "I know you're really busy right now, but..."
  • You reference a red stapler in a conversation and then attribute the quote to Dilbert.

Those are just mine. I know you have some to add, so add away.

On another note, tonight begins the 6 months of Football. I am ecstatic, but until your team plays all the hoopla feels like the dinner you had to sit through as a kid on Christmas Eve before you could open presents. Nice and everything, but not the real reason you came. And with that I say, Go Horse!!

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Back in the Saddle

Damn, it sucks to have a job. Well, the money is nice, but being away from your job for 5 straight days and then coming back to it is not a lot of fun.

Despite a thumb amputation, the weekend was a blast. Although I'm sure the phrase "Girls' weekend" probably conjured up visions of pajama-clad pillow fights when the most sexuality we cared to muster was the constant use of the word "bitch." Mostly to describe Precious when she was mocking me for not having any kind of Donkey Konga skills. Swampette, on the other hand, was a General in the Rhythm Nation.

The only big bummer was me realizing that I wanted to buy some local, only available in THAT state wine on Sunday. Then remembering that alcohol isn't sold on Sunday. Of course, I didn't remember this until I was at a supermarket looking at the bottles of wine and wondering how much it would take to bribe a cashier. I totally didn't have enough cash for that.

I got back on Sunday but spent Monday and Tuesday mentally preparing for my triumphant return to work. By mentally preparing, I meant shopping. It took me weeks to get used to my new Kroger. I finally got it down and then BAM! I walked in on Monday morning to see that they were remodeling. I'm back at square one.

Anyway, I came back this morning without much kicking and screaming. Spent most of the day fielding calls about Katrina and its impact on our events. And of course, I've laughed my ass off. I got an email from the PRSA, a professional organization for Public Relations professionals. The email included in it the following line:

"Time and again, you have asked, 'How can I use my public relations skills most effectively to help in this terrible disaster??'"

Is PR really the first thing that New Orleans needs right now? A better, glossier image? Are there actually people that asked that?

I'm impressed. Our organization not only set up a fund to field staff donations for the relief efforts, but also is allowing us to donate by giving up to half of our days off. They will then convert them into money and add them to the fund. Not a bad deal.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Knittin', Bitchin' and Eatin'

Those are my plans for this weekend with the girls! I am so excited to be travelling North for a girls' weekend. We haven't all gotten together for about a year and I'm looking forward to it.

I can't wait for us to start knitting and bitching and eating everything that's yummy. Plus I haven't been in my home state for several months. Although paying over $3 a gallon in gas prices to get there won't carry quite the glee it should. Perhaps I can get some cheap Kentucky gas and then brag all weekend about how I found gas for $2.50.

I will miss Chef dearly but I'm sure we'll actually have time to miss each other while I'm gone this weekend. And he can play Halo without anyone making any snide comments or rude looks.

However excited I am about this weekend, I'm mostly excited because I will be off of work. I have yet to take a "true" vacation this summer and my sluggishness and lack of enthusiasm is definitely a result of too many hours looking at the same things. Five whole, glorious days of not having to put in X number of hours or "having" to take a call. It's my vacation. I don't HAVE to take anyone's call now.

I'm outta here.

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