12/02/2006

 

Chestnuts Roasting on a...Oh, Wait. That's Me...

Well, as you Gentle Readers can no doubt tell from the time/date stamp, I've been away for awhile. Sorry about that, but I can tell you that the reason has been because I've been working. A lot. I've gone to a full half-hour-shy-of-40 hours-a-week at work in order to give the family some Christmas presents and to get bills caught up before the weather turns cold for good. Heads up: as a result, I'll be posting very sporadically through the first of the year at least.

But for now, some updates: Thanksgiving went without a hitch (except for the inevitable refereeing of the kids) and I even got the turkey right (for a change...) It usually comes out very dry. This year I dumped most of a can of chicken broth into the turkey before I closed the oven bag. Succulent and delicious! Leftovers this year weren't the ordeal they normally are.

I forgot to title my last post. I've typed one in, as you can see. Gotta keep consistency, after all.

I seem to be getting used to working in retail, even at Christmas (or maybe I'm just suffering from Stockholm Syndrome). Mixing it up with The Public both smart and stupid is just another walk in the park for me now. Still, I get the most boneheaded questions (like the lady that wanted to know if the Christmas trees on display were the same ones in the boxes right next to them even though there's a picture of the thing on the box) and the weirdest calls from the front registers (like the trainee who wanted to know if the clearance price she was seeing on her register was actually a clearance price. Well, duh, sweetheart...) The thing about work that bothers me the most now is when I don't get to finish cleaning up the department or setting up merchandise due to constant interruptions, and then having to end my shift with half my to-do list undone. Still, my fellow daytime co-workers have learned to have the coffee hot when I hit the door in the morning, and to not annoy "Michael B" too much until he's had a cup. Most days, anyway.

Could be worse; all the managers I had problems with are gone, along with, sadly, some I liked. And the ones I didn't like, I hated with a cold-flame passion. But I like all the current managers, especially my department head (Hi, O4!) She's got the same "get-it-done-however" attitude I have. Scary, no?

The Beast has quieted down some since my last post. I think just staying so busy has kept him off balance. Still, he manages to get in a jab every now and then. His latest tactic involves sowing doubt that I'll ever get back in school, or get my diploma once there.

My mom turned 70 today. Thank God. There were a few times we didn't think she'd make it, but not only is she still quite active, she's become cantankerous in her old age. Gee, can't imagine what that's like...

Took the family to the Greensboro Christmas parade* earlier today. It was actually good this year. The most impressive presentation was by Lawndale Baptist Church, who had people dressed as ancient shepherds, leading an assortment of domestic animals, including honest-to-God camels** and a huge float with the Three Wise Men and the Nativity, although the baby playing Jesus was a bit old I think (had to have been at least a year old).

We seem to have made a friend in the projects. There are numerous feral cats living in the woods nearby; they avoid us, we leave them alone (although a few have fallen prey to some of the cars that travel up and down the street). One calico cat, however, seems to have been someone's pet, once. We feed her whenever she decides to show up, and we can tell she's dying to come in, but as much as we'd like that, our lease (and landlord) say that's a no-no. I've been thinking of having someone come get her before the maintenance people decide to start a anti-cat pogrom but I haven't had much time to work on the idea. Calico*** also shows up on an irregular basis, so it's hard to predict where she'll be at any given time.

We've officially got copies of Ness' Christmas list. Oh, Lord. Suffice it to say it's two pages long, front and back, and composed mostly of items that Daddy will never be able to afford. Short of winning the Powerball, anyway. I asked her to prioritize the top ten items she wanted and there are a few things that I may be able to get, if I don't get kung-fu'ed by little old ladies shopping for their grandkids first.


--------------------------
*It's official name is the Greensboro Jaycees Holiday Parade, but I don't care what anybody says, it's a Christmas parade if it hits in December.

**I have no idea where in the world this place found camels. Pretty docile ones, too.

***I know it's lame, but we couldn't agree on a better name for her.

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