No More Empty Fortune Cookies!

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Today's blog is brought to you ...

by the number


(Not that one, Macey! The actual number, depicted here )

Now, about my series of events relating to the wonderful number 2...
Yesterday I had 2 phone interviews with 2 different people from a place that I submitted my resume to about 2 months ago. Just a month or so before I was fired, when I was simply considering other options.
They called me back and asked me to come in Friday at 2 pm, and the directions are to take the 2nd if only the office was on the 2nd floor it would be perfect! But alas, it's on the 3rd. Oh well.
I love it. As the Great Job Hunt of 2008 has painfully continued longer than any job hunt that I have ever embarked upon, I have found ways such as this to amuse myself.
Yes, I really do need a job.
Today I am painting so I will keep this very brief. I have not painted much since I've been out of work, and I really feel like that is such a tragedy. I was in the middle of painting a portrait of Max when he got diagnosed with cancer and then quickly passed away. It has sat unfinished on my easel waiting patiently ever since. I have not had it in me to work on it. Today I think I will.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

To Overcome

I am trying to overcome obstacles,
With nimble fingers and a fractured heart
I persist
With trembeling knees and a wavering voice,
I stand firm and say
"You won't beat me!"

I know heartache for the first time,
with all of it's delusions and lies...
Still I persist.

Remembering to breathe,
Remembering to awake,
Remembering to dress...

One day, I will be ok,
and I will know,
that I can endure,
I can survive,
I can thrive and enjoy
this thing called life.

Awaiting Dawn

Today I wrote a poem,
I cried as I wrote and when I finished
I remembered that yesterday
I painted a picture
Bursts of red, orange, and yellow
bringing the sunset out of the sky and right there onto my canvas.
And it too made me cry.
For, I've never seen a sunset boast the beauty of imagination to it's fullest capacity
Maybe one day I will.
But until then
I'll write poems that make me cry for that lost little girl
and paint pictures of beauty that I know nothing of...
And await for the inevitable day,
when the sunset in the sky
and the sunset in my mind
finally make peace on behalf of love.

Copyright ©1996 AngelaSchleicher

the rrrrrrrest of the story

With Tara in the psych. unit, Laurel passed out on the living room floor, and Caryne and I stoned out of our minds, the night that sculpted the landscape of my life took shape.
We decided to head out for a ride by the lake. It was late summer and the night air was warm and humid. The type of night that is just right after a blistering summer day. The smell of fresh cut grass hung in the air and tickled my sensitive nose and made my eyes red and swollen. It was perfect for hiding signs of illicit drug usage. Being a nursing student, one would expect me to abstain from those practices, but as I found out, nurses seem to be the heaviest partiers. Maybe that Pharmacology class gave us a false sense of entitlement to experimentation. Maybe we just studied so hard that we wanted to play equally so. Who knows. The amount of cocaine, xanax, alcohol, and methadone that I consumed during my nursing school days would have been ample to have killed a rancher's stock of horses.
With my buzz on full speed, sitting in my car under a glorious moon reflecting on a dead of night lake, Caryne leaned over and kissed me. It was the kiss to end all kisses. My head spun like no other time and my toes curled. My hands trembled so much that I didn't know if I was having a seizure or not.
We talked and commiserated on how unhappy we were with our partners and how happy we'd be if only...
The moon became more distant and daylight began to seep in so we pulled ourselves apart and headed home. Home to... Oh no! Laurel! Laurel was there and we had left and she was going to be pissed! What had we done? We held hands on the way home and decided that when we got there we were going to tell her everything. We'd tell her that we think we are in love. That we want to try to make a life together. Later we'd go to the hospital and I'd tell Tara.
It sounded so easy. So smooth. It wasn't.

But we got past the drama of it all and we did make a life together. We were happy and blissful for awhile. We spent the next two years getting to know each other and experimenting more and more with new things like IV cocaine, IV Valium, and mushrooms.
When I fished nursing school in June of 2001, Caryne announced that she wanted to move home to California. She wanted to be closer to her dad. I was happy to go and within two months we had moved from Nashville, Tennessee all the way to Davis, California, just outside of Sacramento. The trip was a blast. Max, my kitty rode with us and occasionally got out on his leash to walk on Route 66. We made special stops to take photos of cools spots like standing on the corner in Winslow, Arizona, just like in the Eagles' song! Max was the best car traveling kitty I've ever met.
We made fast friends with our boss, Kelly who was looking for a new apartment. We found out that her husband was recently arrested on charges of manufacturing methamphetamine, although she denied any knowledge of it. We introduced her to our landlord and she became our neighbor. She liked to drink and we often spent time together, the three of us. We took trips together to San Francisco and Lake Tahoe. We took Kelly to her first gay bar.
It was at her house that Caryne, on New Year's Eve, in front of all of our new friends and co-workers, got down on bended knee and proposed to me with flowers, ring, the whole shebang! She even coordinated it so as to have "our song" playing when it happened. To this day, if I hear Dido's Thank You, I want to puke.
A few short weeks later I was in Laurel's position, being told that they were in love and wanting to make a life together. They just couldn't help it: it was meant to be.
I did the typical dyke thing and broke furniture. I threw lamps and chairs. I demolished a TV. I ripped up clothes and screamed like a mad woman. I broke down.
I had moved away from my family and friends to support her decision. I had broken ties with my family over the situation. They were so mad at me we hadn't spoken in months by this point. I was in a strange city. In a strange state which had revoked my driving privileges due to my epilepsy (something that Tennessee would never have done unless I had caused an accident) and with September 11th having just happened the world was such an unsteady and scary place.
Now this. I didn't know which way to turn.
My mother called me on one particularly tough day. I was laying in bed crying after having had an altercation with Caryne and Kelly in the parking lot. It was difficult to have my partner move in next door with her new lover. Having to see them in the parking lot, holding hands, laughing, kissing. They could have kept that out of my sight! The phone rang and it was my mother, I don't remember what she said exactly, only that she was yelling at me for hurting her and my father's feelings and that if only I could find Jesus... " FUCK YOU!" I screamed and hung up on her. She didn't call back.

Eventually, on April Fool's Day I packed what I could fit in the car and moved home to Tennessee and stayed with some old friends. Caryne had told me " You'll never leave here and me" I loved that I did it on April Fool's Day. I felt that it was somehow saying HA HA to her.
I crashed with my friends for a while and got a shitty job. I stayed really messed up for a long time. My addictions became more apparent, to my friends and to me, and so I entered rehab for the third time in my life. The first and second were both in 1997, this time I was in much worse shape. I honestly thought I might die from the detox. I honestly hoped I would.
I emerged from the whole experience a renewed and rejuvenated person with a fresh perspective on life. I still hadn't spoken with my parents, and still didn't want to.
I wish I could say that my life was perfect after that, but it wasn't. I continued to party and be a slacker. I never went back to being a nurse. I don't think I ever will. I did eventually make my way into a healthier state of mind and living. I learned that karma catches up with you. I learned to do unto others as I would have done.
I made amends. I gave up the heavy party persona.

A couple of years ago, Laurel called me and told me that Caryne had been in a car wreck. She was driving home from work one night and ran off the road. She broke her back and both of her legs. She was paralyzed from the waist down. She thought I'd want to know.
I did, I'd have never wished such a fate to befall her of all people. I loved Caryne more passionately than I had known was ever possible. But I abstained from calling her to extend any wishes of recovery or goodwill. For my own well being I thought it best to wish her well via Laurel.

I looked her up once on myspace and found photos of her in a wheelchair. She had posted pictures of herself in the hospital just after the accident too. I guess Laurel wasn't lying.
I hope Caryne has learned about karma and I hope that she can find her happiness before her life closes. I wish for her sake and for those around her that she didn't have to take such a difficult and serpentine path in this world, but I had to move on with my own.

Someone asked me to elaborate on this story for them. I know my storytelling, and I know that in verbally telling it, I tend to get stuck on small details and talk forever about irrelevant nothings. I forget to move forward with the rest of the story. That is why it is here. If you've read this I hope it didn't bore you to tears.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

G.W. Blunders

George W. Bush Best F-Ups

Macey sent me this link, I love it. I know there are many more out there that they didn't include, but this is ample to generate a chuckle

a new poem

A brand new poem is posted at my poetry site, if anyone's interested...
also, I see that the beach is winning on the poll but of course there is scant voting occurring so I don't think that it is a very good representation of the democratic process.

I will make time today to get in here and finish up or at least post some more of the story of 1999, since I have yet to finish it. I can be both nostalgic and melancholy when discussing 1998-2002. No, let me say 1990-2002, really... They were some tumultuous times to say the least. Being a passionate person I have lived, well... passionately and that has created some very high peaks as well as very deep valleys in the landscape of my life. I wouldn't trade a second of any of it because it is what has made me who I am today and in the end, I ended up with Macey. So, as they say, all is well that ends well. I really couldn't ask for my life to be more complete, well, except for a job right now, that would be nice, but really I have a wonderful partner, we have a wonderful life. We have family and friends who love us. Most importantly, we have each other. We encourage and motivate each other. We inspire one another. We work together toward common goals. We are like a well oiled machine; each gear knowing the movements of the other and working symbiotically to achieve every task set before us.
I never would have thought in 1996, laying in the bed at rehab, detoxing and wishing I were dead, that this would be my life. I had no idea that it could be so sweet.

My New Wish

I awoke one day beside a love
who had no love for me,
What a tragedy it is, I thought,
To love unrequitedly.
I soon moved on and found myself
enjoying life without that hitch.
Funny how much better the view
When you climb out of the ditch.
And then one day I met a love
Who proved to be my match!
She showed me love with laughter and joy,
How did I deserve such a catch?
Today I awake beside my love,
Who shares much love with me;
The bond we have is precious,
We cherish it unequivocally.
My life, being so fulfilled,
I have but one wish for you:
The type of bliss that my love and I now share,
It is a dream come true.

Copyright ©2008 AngelaSchleicher

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Grrrr! Tiger...

Can I just say that I love my wife!
Thats all.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Simon Says

Walking along the railroad tracks,

Thinking of life,

expecting death...

I try desperately to acknowledge

What it is the mark that I have left.

Society plays the lead role,

In the questions that I face.

And daily I encounter

Yet another form of the human race.

Equally I look back at them,

With blank and vacant stares,

I turn to walk away from them,

But my questions are still there.

So I make up my own game,

And play my own lead role,

And let the rules of “Simon says “

Take upon them its toll.

Copyright ©1992 AngelaSchleicher

Ambiguous Disparities

Ambiguous Disparities

My friend views the world

through a tiny box of light

And I through the brush strokes

of oil on wood,

or canvas,

or whatever so happens to lend itself to my mission.

We aren't so different, truth be known,

The Photographer and I:

We both simply celebrate the beauty in life.

Kindred spirits you may say?

With similar thoughts on Life's Way?

Oh, but follow each of us past

Our own critical mass,

And one is surely misconstrued less than the other.

Angela Schleicher

Copyright ©2007

Four Year Block

Four Year Block

I no longer paint landscapes,
My brushes are dry, brittle, forgotten.
Paints are caked, cracked
like the desert ground in July.
Poetry no longer flows from my pen;
My fingers, once calloused and limber,
Are now smooth and soft, cramped.
No longer able to navigate the intricate
patterns where line meets loop meets curve
to form the verse my soul aches to sing.
Van Gogh once said painting was
as essential to him as breathing,
my lungs need that air.
I miss the ugly, calloused knots of
flesh upon my knuckles,
The semi-permanent dent, eroded by my nail
has long since recovered.
Leaving no trace, no evidence to indicate
The volumes I once proudly penned.

A Life Lesson

A Life Lesson

I finally made it out on my own;
I crossed the country to find my home.
I found open arms and smiling faces,
NO one telling me I'd fallen from their graces...
Accepting hearts and welcoming homes,
Replace all those spiteful conversations
on the telephone.
I tell myself I’m doing just fine,
Will you ever accept me?
Guess I'll know in time.
We can't choose the people who give us birth,
but we can choose our family while on this earth.
That is the lesson that I've had to learn,
to overcome those painful burns.

A lonely Road

A lonely Road

As I walk along a lonely road,
I hear the great demands.
Plenty around to listen,
but no one who understands.
The moon is pleasant,
the night secure,
for there, I am in a dream.
Yet as day comes,
so does the nightmare,
the one that wakes me in a scream...
I see pain in my future,
and I have a grim past,
How long will these feelings last?
My hopes stay down,
they never rise,
and so I look up to the skies.
The time goes by, day by day
and yes, those feelings are here to stay.

Copyright©1988 Angela Jeanette Schleicher

My Wish

My Wish

One day I will know happiness,
And she will wisk me away to play in the
sand, or run in a field,or paint by a stream.
And we'll make new memories, Happiness and I,
And when I tell others of our times together,
Today's grief will be no more than a
fleeting thought,
Distracting me only for a brief moment...

To Overcome

To Overcome

I am trying to overcome obstacles,
with nimble fingers and a fractured heart.
But I persist
with trembling knees and a wavering voice;
I stand firm and say,
"You won't beat me!"

I know heartache for the first time,
with all its delusions and lies
still I persist

Remembering to breathe,
remembering to awake,
remembering to dress...

One day, I will be ok,
and I will know,
that I can endure,
I can survive,
I can thrive and enjoy
this thing called life.

Job hunt

OK, so the Great Job Hunt of 2008 is still under way. I am being a bit more selective than I had privilege to be in the past. I did sign up for some classes though and that is exciting. I am happy to be enrolled and ready to learn. I think that if circumstances afforded me the opportunity, I could be a professional student. Not that I want to avoid selecting any one area of study, I just want to absorb as much as I can. There's nothing wrong with that type of thirst for knowledge, is there?

Oh and I added a link to my new blog which is simply a home for some of my poetry. I'll post it there when I am ready for it to be out there ;) see it here at

1999...the continued story

Two weeks later, at Tara's suggestion, I found myself offering Caryne and Laurel to rent out my spare bedroom. With Tara out of work for several months and me in nursing school, the extra help on the bills was much needed relief. I noticed right away that the large glass of who knows what was ever present with Laurel and a source of much angst for Caryne. I was impressed with how quickly they adapted to living in a new city a new state and how quick Caryne was to help keep the house clean. I was not used to that. Tara never cleaned up. She would lounge around on my sofa playing video games from the time I went to work at 7am until I came home from school at 10pm and then have the audacity to ask me "Can you wash my clothes?" or "What's for dinner? I'm starving!" I remember one especially animated argument stemming from a day in which she had asked me to make her a pitcher of tea before I left for work. I obliged and made a gallon, kissed her goodbye and asked her to please look for a job today... I went to work, worked my 8 hours, went directly to school and spent 5 hours there, came home exhausted and thirsty and went for a glass of freshly made sweet tea, we are in the south, after all. There she was in the same spot on the sofa, still in her pajamas saying " If you're gonna drink my tea you need to make some more, I'm almost out." Well, needless to say, that flew all over me. I lit into her lazy, selfish, irresponsible, immature ass and told her what exactly she could do with that tea pitcher. That one woke up Caryne and Laurel. Next thing I knew, Caryne was in the kitchen making tea. She was an angel that way. There was another time, my birthday actually, that I came home and there was a birthday cake with “Happy Birthday Angie” on the top. Tara was holding it so proudly. How SWEET! I never knew she could bake! She never had before. I thanked her and blew my candles out. After much hesitation, she reluctantly said, “ I have to tell you…Caryne made your cake. I …forgot it was your birthday.” I looked to Caryne, now it was her turn to blush.
Shortly after the birthday incident, Tara pulled one of her stunts; she was a cutter. She liked to use razor blades to slice into her arms and carve herself up just because. She said it was because I harassed her to get a job or because I didn’t want her talking to her ex or because her mom was mean or you name it, she used it as an excuse…
There’s always a million reasons for these things, none of which I was equipped to help with. I was fed up with trying. I had loved Tara, nurtured Tara, stood by her, and supported her. But I was at the end of my rope. We went to visit her mom and she gave Tara the what for over the fresh cuts. That only agitated her already irritable mood; as we left she punched her arm into a car causing more damage to her fist and arm than to the car. I told her I was taking her to the E.R. to have X-Rays. That was ok with her, as long as that was all I was taking her for. I promised and told her it needed to be splinted. I knew better. I knew the E.R. would see her razor cuts and see her wild eyed look and hear her paranoid talk and suicidal ideations and admit her to the psychiatric unit. She was no stranger to it by this point. These moods came more and more frequently these days. In fact Caryne and Laurel had asked me if we all should be concerned for our own safety. I told them I wasn’t completely sure, and honestly, I wasn’t.

Click here for the rest of the story.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

History - 1999

I took one look at her spiky bleach blonde hair and immediately knew that this would inevitably be the beginning of a long list of very bad decisions. Never before in my twenty five years of life had my intuition been more accurate. I held tightly onto Tara’s hand, grateful I had accompanied her to meet this exotic creature. She introduced me as the love of her life and I thought about how desperately I wanted a love of my life. Smiling coyly, I said hello and nice to meet you and wondered why she was partnered with the woman she introduced me to. They didn’t look like a couple at all, although I was told that they had been together for some 14 years already. I admired that. I had barely spent 14 consecutive months with any one person. I wondered if anyone noticed that my cheeks had flushed. Was that wind tattering the windows? No it's internal, the incessant thump, thump, thump of a heart ready to leap. I also wondered if Tara had any idea what I had in store for her if she dared try another one of her little stunts or that I secretly hoped that she would…
The exotic creature had a name: Caryne, with a “y” and an “e” I was told. Never having given such a bland name any thought before, I instantly loved that name on this particular day. I usually hate pretentious strange spellings of ordinary names, but I was told that it was the adoption officials from Germany that had screwed it all up. Very interesting. I sat right down next to her and made small talk. We laughed and joked and became quick friends. I studied her. Laurel, her mismatched partner, sat across the room cutting sharp glances at me and drinking - what, I do not know- from a very large glass. This would play out many times over the next few months, as I would come to experience.
As we left, Tara turned to me and said “ I saw how she looked at you, you know.” I knew she did and I didn’t care. I saw how she looked at me too. “What, are you kidding me?” I asked. “ Besides, what’s she, like… 30?” “Actually she’s 38, and you’re supposed to say ‘Besides, I love you, Tara’ not ‘what’s she? 30?”
Busted! I knew it wasn’t going to be easy to admire Caryne from afar.
*names have been changed for matters of confidentiality

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Pensive Mood...

Max's ashes are ready to be picked up from the vet's office and I don't know how to feel about that. I miss my little man. Each day that passes I expect to see him laying on the back of the sofa or stretched out in the floor in that spot between the living room and the dining room where he had the best view. He loved it there. I miss his head-butts. I miss his raspy meow and the feeling of him climbing up onto my chest every single time I dare to recline. I miss him kneading at my knee with his little paws. I can't believe what used to be soft flowing silky fur has been reduced to silt and I don't know if I can stand to see it. Part of me wants to place him in my flower bed so he can be reborn each spring and summer. Part of me wants to sprinkle him in a park. Part just wants to keep him safe and sound in the warmth and security of my home. Max is gone and I can't change that. Max will never again curl up on the back of my knees while I sleep or rub his head against my chin and that is one hard pill to swallow.
I keep remembering the first night Max and I spent together. He meowed incessantly and I thought I would surely kill him if he didn't stop. We made it through that one and became quick BFF's. Max showed me places of my apartment I'd never before seen. Like the gaping hole in the wall under the kitchen cabinets that somehow lead to outside. He went in and never came out. I found him outside the front door the next day waiting patiently to come inside. I immediately patched up that hole. He taught me to close the dryer door or else a kitty may crawl in to nap... that was scary. He showed me that without fail, if it's something I want to read, he's going to lay directly on top of it but only until I stop trying to read it. He also proved his artistic abilities by placing his paw prints on more than a few of my paintings. He was almost renamed Picasso. He showed me how to go with the flow. As long as I was there, he didn't much mind where we moved or who moved in with us (except that one roommate...). He showed me that no one is exempt from maternal nurturing for those who need it.

I learned from Max that home is where you hang your hat and that as long as you have love in your life you are rich beyond measure. Max was content whether living in the tiniest of apartments or the bigger house we ever occupied. Even the stint in the hotel when we had no real home of our own other than room 227 of the Red Roof Inn. Max taught me what unconditional love is.

Later, after our extended stay in room 227, when I'd finally rented a new apartment, Max again showed me hidden caverns in the ceiling of my closet and utility room. I quickly learned to patch those as well. Max was an expert explorer and a seasoned traveler. I'll never forget the looks on the faces of the people as they passed us by when they realized that was a CAT on a leash getting his kicks on Route 66! What better companion could I have asked for to accompany me during my past eleven years of Nursing school, cross country moves, life changing break ups, and everything else in between. Max's spirit of love and adventure only matched mine making us kindred spirits from the start. Today I raise a toast to Maximilian and say thanks to my little man for all the great memories that I will cherish forever.

Renewing the Dream

The Wifester sent me a link to a blog she reads and asked me to read it. I encourage you to do the same. go here

Sunday, January 20, 2008


Living with epilepsy can be a real pain, and I mean that quite literally. The other day I had a seizure, fell and somehow landed on my shoulder which is now extremely sore and causing my fingers to be swollen. I had to use lotion and work for an inordinate amount of time just to get my ring off of that hand this morning. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm sure that ten years ago the same seizure would not have caused this much pain and difficulty in my life, so aging is also a factor here as is my extra baggage in the form of adipose tissue. I like to think of it as padding. I have ample padding to protect me from these falls. AMPLE. But the other pain is that I went on an interview that at first I was hesitant about, got there and found out more about the position and got a bit excited only to find out that it would require me to drive on a daily basis. I lost my driver's license years ago due to my epilepsy and my neurologist has no plans on letting me drive again. I don't blame him. I'd be devastated if I ever caused an accident and hurt anyone else. There's no blame to place here. It just is what it is. I have a medical condition that I live with every day. Most days it has no effect on my life, no impact of any importance or consequence. Some days it has a severe impact and others it's only minimally invasive. So what? I can't play video games anymore. And going to clubs can be a risk if there's a strobe light and there usually is. I'm 35, I have better things to do with my time than play video games and I'm married to a wonderful woman now and we have a great life and really rarely ever even consider going to a club. Sure, I have to take medication that makes me sleepy and groggy and causes me to have somewhat depressed cognitive functions. I take it just before bed. It's helped me sleep better, so I made lemonade out of that lemon. That's usually what I try to do. I think of myself as a glass is half full kind of girl - at least most of the time. It can be easy to get bogged down with the woe-is-me's. I know that. In my earlier days I lived in woe- is- me-ville. It's not the kind of place you want to hang your hat. The neighborhoods are grungy and full of undesirables. Lots of unpaved roads that lead to nowhere and an oppressive totalitarian government. I was beholden to find my way out and into the sunshine of optimism. Staying here can be somewhat tricky at times, but it's well worth the effort. Today I'll relax with a heating pad and be glad that this only happens on rare occasions. I'll let my wife cater to my needs and if the mood so strikes me I'll read instead of paint allowing my shoulder to rest. Anyways, Sundays are ripe for relaxation.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Tie Dye Dreams

I've been a sad puppy.
I suppose that the combination of loosing my job
and my companion of 11 years (my kitty Max, for those who don't know) has taken its toll. Combine that with grey winter skies and - there yah go- Instant Depression.

I keep getting interviews for jobs that I don't want. I feel guilty if I don't go on the interview, yet I know that the position is not something that is suitable to my life or me. In the first place, if the dress code is business professional, I'm screwed. I have never been a business professional kind of girl. I was actually in scrubs most of my working life, then after that it's been a business casual environment and that's the way I've liked it. I don't own a single pair of high heels or pantyhose. Can't even walk in those toe crunchers! I own exactly three dresses, one of which could be considered business professional, however it does not fit me and hasn't for a couple of years. I have two pairs of dress pants. One of them needs to be thrown away or taken to a tailor. Now how exactly am I supposed to show up for this business professional interview in my tattered and worn out t-shirts and expect to get hired? Sigh. I need to do some shopping. That's probably mostly depression wanting to vent via shopping however appropriate clothing for the interview process would actually be nice. The Wifester doesn't want to spend a single dime on anything extra until I get a job. I can't get a job without having some presentable attire. Problem is I'm not a fashion queen - not by any means. I spent my formative years wearing tie-dye t-shirts and floral print ankle length skirts and Birkenstocks. I'd still wear them if I had them, from the tie-dye to the birkies. I'm most comfortable in jeans or sweats propped up in front of a canvas smearing paint everywhere. No need for a suit when you're creating art!
Is it any wonder that almost every piece of clothing that I own has paint on it? I suppose I could go to the grocery store and get a job as a cashier along with all of the teenagers and college kids. But really, come on. Is it seriously that desperate yet? I really want to spend the next few months getting web master certified. It wont take me long. I'm half way there already. Then I could concentrate more fully on a career not just some job after that. In the meanwhile if something comes along I could take it but focus my attention and efforts to getting the certifications needed first and foremost. This would do a few things for the situation: 1. allow me to work in a creative field that I have an aptitude for and an interest in 2. increase my earning potential by at least double 3. boost my confidence and add power to my resume.
Ugh, you see my conundrum don't you?
So, in the midst of all of this, my need to clean and organize has taken on new heights. I actually organized and cleaned my cleaning supplies. Lined them up and faced them out on the shelf as though I were still a retail store clerk.
I even got on my hands and knees and scrubbed a stain on the carpet that has been driving me nuts. I'm ready to tackle the "Back Room". The Back Room is always referred to as an entity in and of itself. The name Back Room is always said somewhat under the breath and in a lower than normal pitch. That room holds among other things old clothes that need to be thrown out or donated, art supplies, old computers that need to be recycled, and a million as of yet unpacked boxes from my bachelorette apartment. I'm thinking that if I haven't needed those things in those boxes by now, I probably don't need them and they can just go away. Of course the guest bedroom needs some help now too. the closet in there is full of clothes of Macey's that I'm pretty sure she hasn't worn in at least 5 years.
Either way I go, I've got my work cut out for me.

Maximillion, Maximus, Maxwell House 1996-2007

Monday, January 14, 2008

Who are these people?

As the great job hunt of 2008 continues I paused today to talk to my mother. I know, I know. I must be a glutton for punishment and torture. I was raised in the Catholic Church after all. She was full of useless info about her new church and the homeless women at the shelter that she and my father minister to. I should just be grateful that I'm not in a position to be ministered to in order to receive a warm place to stay tonight. I don't understand that. If you feel in your heart that you need to care for and serve less fortunate people, why then does it have to be contingent upon the less fortunate person submitting themselves to your biased paradigm and zealotry? I suppose that it actually is a quite effective form of obtaining new converts. However, I was raised differently; to believe that doing a favor should be without strings attached. That giving in the name of charity is gift enough and that it would diminish or tarnish the gift to request something in return or to require something in exchange. True charity comes from an absolute selfless place in the soul and what I am seeing with this set up is in reality a front for a fundamentalist recruiting operation. My parents, once bright and intelligent people have bought into the whole mess hook, line and sinker. I used to think that these fundamentalist were all just a bunch of uneducated hillbillys but I see now that it is much more elaborate. My father is an engineer. He can calculate equations in his head that I have some difficulty working on a calculator, and faster too! I don't remember exactly when it happened, somewhere between my coming out and moving to California and my big break up and move back home to Tennessee my parents became religious zealots. They were brainwashed. My father who used to enjoy Mel Brooks movies now only watches religious themed films. The man who used to be prepared to entertain a party at the drop of a hat with drinks and cheer and jokes is now, sadly, only touting the words of a book that his minister has twisted and construed into hate and bigotry. The worst part is that it is all done under the guise of " love".
That isn't love. When I called my parents to tell them I was getting married, my mother said simply " Oh, here" and handed the phone to my father. My father said with a huge sigh, " well, you know you're going to burn in hell for this, don't you?"
I didn't get another call from them for 4 months after that.
Macey's parents came to our wedding which was in Canada by the way, not like it was a 30 minute drive or something so simple to attend. They gave us two parties in fact. One for our friends here in Tennessee and one for their family up in Ohio. Her entire family welcomed me into the unit. They all embraced our marriage just as they are embracing Matt and Lauren's engagement. There's been no distinction between the two. In my family however, my marriage is absolutely disregarded and ignored. All because "Jesus doesn't agree" with it. Please! As I stated before, I was raised in the Catholic Church, in Catholic school in fact. I studied the bible cover to cover. If fundamentalists want to really teach and preach the fundamentals of the bible, then they should be talking about absolute love, tolerance, and acceptance. These are the virtues that I learned from my studies of the same book.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Resistance is Futile

So it's 2008 and I'm without my favorite kitty in the world and now I'm jobless to boot.
Max dying at the close of 2007 was supposed to be the ending... of what I'm not entirely sure. I told myself Max was teaching me how to let go and move on. I decided I should let go of trying to make my company treat employees fairly, pay appropriately, provide adequate support for employees to properly do the job outlined you know, basics. I had deemed that it was just about time to amp up my search for alternate employment. Two weeks later I am jobless. Ah, be careful what you wish for.

I've become quite the house keeper this week. It is not becoming of me. Suzie Homemaker I am not. However last night's sushi experiment was quite successful.( see photo) Sushi is less home economics and more art if you ask me. That's why it went so well. If baking had been involved in my experiments yesterday I'd of been screwed. I can decorate the cake, but getting the cake from powders and liquids to solid edible food is a whole different story. It's my inability to stick to strict guidelines. I want to open the door and look at it. I want to eyeball my measurements, it's the artist in me. I realize the paradox, the conundrum if you will that is implied when you reference my earlier statements about my frustration in other people's inability to follow my directions, however, you see, the need to listen to and follow directions applies to everyone else. I of course am exempt. Why you may ask? What makes me so special as to not need instructions? Well, I didn't say I don't need them. I fully realize that by not following a recipe I will always ruin my attempts at baking. I don't care and therein lies the difference. I am not going to call a 1800 number for customer support and yell and scream at some anonymous person because I did not follow directions. I am probably going to laugh at myself and apply mass quantities of icing to cover up any sunken in spots and make it look really pretty to cover my imperfections.
Is that the right way? No, absolutely not. The right thing to do would be to either follow the stupid recipe or hire someone to bake the friggin cake!
For now I will continue to bake flat in the middle cakes and decorate them beautifully. I will post my resume daily, I will search for a new job and I will as I wrote in a poem once :

" ... Paint pictures of beauty that I know nothing of,
And await for the inevitable day
That the sunset in the sky
and the sunset in my mind
Finally make peace on behalf of love. "

Thursday, January 10, 2008

New Beginings

I got fired!
I'm not really mad, mostly just relieved that I don't have to get cussed at 15 times today and be stressed out because I stayed on a phone call 5 min too long. However, now I'm left with wondering what to do and where to go from here. I assure you that I do not want to do Customer Service again and my nursing career was over 5+ years ago. That leaves me a mid 30's, overweight, moderately educated woman competing in an Über-fierce job market where image is paramount and youth is the key. I’m quite sure that I can compete both cognitively and technically. But do I want to stay in the corporate world where no one is a person and everyone is just a number? I'm an artist. I want to paint, sculpt, and design. I want to create pretty things either on paper, canvas, or screen. This is what I do. Not soothe the angry customer for a mere twelve bucks an hour. Not repeatedly advise ignorant people that had they only paid the entire bill last month then the bill would not be so high this month or their services would still be on today etc. These things I became quite good at. After all it is a matter of logic. I can look at an account and see instantly what is amiss. I can diagnose, isolate, and resolve most issues within the first couple of minutes all before the customer is finished cussing at me. In most cases the issue stems from the customer themselves either not paying enough on the previous month's bill, not paying on time, or using services that require extra charges. If people would just learn to pick up a calculator and the bill before they call Customer Care, well, then call centers would all shut down.
In technical troubleshooting I am at my strongest. This is the field that intrigues me the most. I love finding software or hardware issues and resolving them. But working with the general public is such a nightmare. How many times have I asked someone to turn the device off, which is a crucial step in order to force the software update to load, they say" yeah, it's off" but then I can hear it chiming in the background blatantly and obviously on. Or how many times after I sent the data packet to them and asked them to power it off and back on did they say to me, "I've already tried that before I called you". Ok, wasn't it in about first or second grade that they began to teach us all how to listen to and follow directions? This is why. I hated it when a patient received explicit instructions on how to manage their care and when seen again had not followed a single step as outlined for them. I hated at the hotel when I asked people to fill in the registration card and all they would do is sign their name to it. Not listing their car type, not listing the number of people in the room, not checking if they wanted a wake up call or not. The same person was sure to yell and scream when they did not get a wake up call, even though they did not bother to list it on the registration form as asked.

Here I am, looking for a job, wondering what life holds in store for me next. I sure hope it's colorful and fun!