Deum, vitam, litteras amemus
 
middlegirl
middlegirl
.:.:. :.:::. ..:::::. ::::..
Quote of the Whenever I Feel Like Changing It
“And don 't forget, the next time you're planning a family vacation, consider visiting Genovia. A country of majestic mountains and sunbaked beaches, filled with friendly, peppy people. Come see us. Genovia awaits you.” – Joe, “The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement”

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middlegirl [userpic]

Yeah, I know I haven't been posting lately, but I'm working 8-and-a-half-hour days, and with tax season coming to an end, work has been crazy-nutso. Add to that the fact that the tax office I'm working at is rather posh, with rather wealthy clients (one drove up one day in a Jaguar and talked about how his company was working on [large-scale televised entertainment event redacted due to confidentiality restrictions] and [Canadian large-scale televised entertainment event redacted due to confidentiality restrictions] and because of that had to give up on [even larger-scale televised sports event redacted due to confidentiality restrictions]), and these clients can be rather high-maintenance and frustrating. So, suffice to say, I've been working my butt off and when I get home I'm just too tired to post.

What am I doing now that I can post? Sitting in the jury room at the county courthouse. I got called in today, and they're selecting for a six-week trial. (Yikes.) So a bunch of people (myself included) filled out I-have-an-honest-hardship-please-don't-pick-me-for-this questionnaires, and I think they're still sorting through them. I missed out on the first round of excusals, but hopefully I can get excused today. I really don't want to have to call my temp job and tell them I have to be back tomorrow. They already didn't like the fact that I had to be here today with Tax Day on Monday. Praise the Lord the court has wi-fi.

Now we're just sitting around doing absolutely nothing. The jury admin guy hasn't said anything in close to an hour and a half. I've spent most of the day watching last year's Eurovision Song Contest and creating a drinking game. Give singers an international stage and millions of viewers and have them try to win a singing contest, and tropes will appear. The Fan of Added Drama and Key Change of Added Drama, to give a few examples. Gimmicky costumes also tend to show up every once in a while, as does what I call "alleged English," which is when you get non-native English speakers writing or translating songs into English to try and get a bigger international audience and not bothering to have native English speakers edit it. Belarus' song last year is so chock full of alleged English (and really thick accents) that I can't make out more than about 80% of the words. (Note the use of gimmicky costumes; also, "heartfully" is not a real word. The fun is that what they sing is only about an 80% match of the lyrics posted online. I think.)

***

Luckily, the jury admin guy started reading off names not long after I started writing this, and I got excused from the selection and released for the day. So I called Temp Job and offered to come in, but I'd only be in for 2 hours, so the office manager told me to just not bother. So I got a full day off of work in the busiest week of tax season. No, I won't be paid for it, but I needed the mental health break. I do not know how they do this every year.

middlegirl [userpic]

So I was supposed to start my new temp job today, but life had other plans.

We're still at Armine's, so I got all ready and headed out. It was super foggy, and there was more traffic than I bargained for - and I was in our crappy car, so I couldn't see - and for some reason, I was running late. I even budgeted to leave five minutes early, but somehow ended up leaving the house a few minutes late. I couldn't even get off Armine's street, so I called my agency to let them know I wasn't going to make it on time.

And then they told me I wasn't even supposed to be in yet.

Because the CPA office I'll be temping at requires a background check, I couldn't go in until it checked out.

And because I couldn't see in the fog to make a U-turn, I had to make a big loop around and back to Armine's house. My background check went through later in the afternoon, so I'll start Wednesday.

And in the meantime, I've been stuck here all day without a car (Shannon took the car we had here as soon as she knew she didn't have to stay here), and I've been watching Say Yes to the Dress and Doctor Who all day on Netflix and getting serious cabin fever. And I get to do it all again tomorrow, since Lauren's got school, and Shannon will probably still find some excuse to stay away from here. We're all getting fed up with the Schnauzers.

middlegirl [userpic]

So I hit up T.J. Maxx, Ross, and Goodwill yesterday to pick out my Serious Business clothes. I ended up getting a sheath dress, a skirt suit, a ruffly top, a button-down blouse, and a pair of slacks, all for around $70. I ended up looking pretty good for my interview this morning - so good, in fact, that they offered me the temp job today (even though they told me I'd probably hear back toward the end of this week).

So starting Monday, I get to work 8-and-a-half hour days, and 6 days a week once they hit extended hours at the beginning of February (with a Saturday off every so often). And in my perverse indecisiveness, now I wish I didn't have 4 months of all this work ahead of me. Hence yesterday's post about chasing dreams. The more I chase after a full-time job and all that it promiese (health benefits and the ability to move out and get my own car), the more I wish I could just sit around and write. It's what I enjoy, and it's something that I never seem to have time to do while I'm temping (even though working at the last temp job gave me plenty of time between phone calls; the new temp job will have me working alongside someone, so no free time). But of course I said yes, because like I'm going to interview for a job and then say no, especially if they made the snap decision like that. The money should be good, though. Maybe I'll be able to get a car this summer after all.

I've got the rest of this week, though, to figure stuff out, as I'll be at Armine's house watching the Schnauzers (again). I love how it's just assumed that I'll do it, even though with all the places everybody has to be at (new temp job notwithstanding), and only two cars between us, it's going to be crazy - and expensive with all the gasoline we'll be spending getting places. Tomorrow is bad, with Lauren having two classes tomorrow - one in the morning and one in the evening - me having church tomorrow night, and Shannon working all day, we had to piece together a game of Musical Cars just to get everything worked out. And since Armine and family won't be back from Massachusetts until Wednesday, taking me and one car out of the equation Monday and Tuesday is only going to complicate things. And of course the dogs can't be/have never been alone for more than a few hours, and having Shannon and Lauren not know their work schedules until Thursday (of course Lauren has school), it's all up in the air and Hrayr is worried about who's going to watch the dogs. (I submit they'll be fine. I doubt they'll start destroying the house as soon as the four-hours-alone mark is reached, especially if someone is there to take them outside beforehand.)

Argh. At least staying at their house Monday and Tuesday will put me significantly closer to my new job for two days. Right now, though? I need The Middleman. Maybe MST3K. And maybe even some Eurovision Song Contest before bed. I have to be up at the ungodly hour of 4:30 am to drive with Dad to Armine's, so he can pick them up for the airport and drop me off without having to make an extra trip, otherwise I'd be there right now.

There was something supremely cool today, but more about that when the pictures are available for download. :-)

Mood frustratedLocation Nowhere near a successful book deal
Mood frustrated
Music Time After Time - Cyndi Lauper
Tags: argh, whatever i'm a temp
middlegirl [userpic]

People always say
Girl, you are in too deep
But I'm not afraid to chase my dreams,
Just me and my stories

And no one may ever know
The feelings inside my mind
'Cause all of the lines I ever write
Are running out of time

So maybe I should get a nine to five
But I don't want to let it go, there's so much more to life

Tell me that I’ve got it wrong
Tell me everything will be okay
Before I fall
Tell me they'll read my lines
Tell me they'll feel the words I say
When darkness falls
All of the stars will see
Just me and my stories

I'm sure that I'll find my way
'Cause I'm not afraid to try
Even a world of love and hope can't guarantee that prize

So maybe I should get a nine to five
But I don't want to let it go, there's so much more to life

Tell me that I've got it wrong
Tell me everything will be okay
Before I fall
Tell me they'll read my lines
Tell me they'll feel the words I say
When darkness falls
All of the stars will see
Just me and my stories

Me and my stories...


And it's only fair that if I'm going to co-opt his lyrics, you should hear the original:

middlegirl [userpic]

I hate "business/professional attire." Mostly because I don't have any in my closet. Or, more truthfully, I don't have anything I'd define as "professional," just on the dressy side of business casual. Social dressing I can do. Give me a party or dinner out, and I'm good, but work?

A downside of temping is constantly having to go interview at places - I don't begrudge them the wish to pick their long-term temp, but I hate always having to interview. And at places with such disparate dress codes. The last place I temped, I could get away with a cute top and slacks - I was at the front desk and Miss First Impression while everybody else wore whatever the heck they wanted. Jeans, hoodies - and in the case of one customer service rep, all of her back-of-the-neck tattoos visible every Casual Friday.

I have an interview on Tuesday at an accountant's office that is looking for some tax season help, also at the front desk. Sort of like last year at the grandparents', but local. And the guy at my temp agency, in his cute Australian accent (seriously - what makes a guy decide to leave Australia and come to Modesto?), told me specifically to wear a skirt and nylons, and now I'm at a loss. Everybody on their website is wearing full-on professional suits, and I've never had cause to wear anything that professional.

I think I'm going to just suck it up, be like Donna Noble and Wendy Watson, and buy a proper suit. Hopefully Ross or T.J. Maxx will have one, because I can't afford anything from the mall. I already own a black blazer, but I've never thought the way it fit was very professional looking - more boyfriend-y, if that makes any sense. Slightly oversized and floppy, if that helps explain. The other blazers I own are either  too casual (khaki corduroy) or far too theatrical looking (pink-and-yellow brocade). Mom wants to offer me her blazers, which are all very 90s and motherly and not my style, though the royal blue one did make me think of Greg Lee from Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?

Thank goodness for this site. I'm starting to get some ideas... but it's time for bed. I've got all weekend to hash this out.

middlegirl [userpic]

My sisters love the movie Despicable Me. I haven't seen it, though I do like what bits of it I have seen. When I first heard the plot - Steve Carell's character wants to steal the moon - I joked that Carmen Sandiego had done it first (though now I can't remember if she ever actually accomplished it. I know she got thwarted in the cartoon, but maybe her henchmen succeeded in the computer game and/or game show). Now that I've seen parts of it (sisters were watching it while I ran around and had stuff to do), I totally have a backstory in my head that the whole moon-stealing plot was spearheaded by a mysterious woman in a red coat and fedora, and Gru is really Steve Carell's character's first name, and his last name is Some. (All Carmen Sandiego henchmen have to have criminally bad puns as names. It's one of the fundamental, immutable laws of the entire Carmen universe. Like gravity. Some of the ACME staff have bad puns as names, too, but I didn't play those games growing up.) This mysterious woman doesn't mind that Gru has adopted three orphans - she was once an orphan, too - but she still expects Gru to give 110% to the organization. Next stop, the Great Wall of China. (Oh, and Dr. Nefario only goes by his last initial - S.)

Now that I hear there are plans for a Despicable Me sequel, I would actually see that movie in theaters if they were to write this mysterious woman into the script/evil syndicate infrastructure. I just need to figure out who to address the letters to.

***
Christmas is fast approaching, and I'm nearing the finish line of the Advent-ivity Calendar. Tomorrow should be simple - I've got four hours of temping to do, and then all I have to do is film tomorrow's video. I still have one more gift to make, and another to buy (unless Mom & Dad are buying it, and it's from the whole family), but now that I've made one bracelet, making another shouldn't be too difficult - plus I don't need to gift those until Christmas Eve. I'm hoping to film Christmas Eve and Day's videos at the same time, and then I'll be done. This has been the Martha Stewart-est Christmas I have ever attempted, and while it's been fun, it's driving me up the wall. I'm seriously debating whether to do another 25 activities next year, or try something different. It might depend on what the work situation is like.

At any rate, now I really get why people are frazzled at Christmas. Today I had plans to get stuff done, and then I found out we were meeting my dad's parents tonight for Christmas dinner at Applebee's - and I still had to make Nana's gift! So I struggled with the aforementioned bracelet for at least an hour. Jewelry wire can be finicky. And in the end it was gorgeous, but really long. It fell right off my hand, and Nana could just get her hand through. So I ended up taking the bracelet back home, and I'll remake it after Christmas... Don't get me wrong, I love Christmas. I wouldn't put in this much effort if I didn't. But at this point, this is my favorite Christmas song.

middlegirl [userpic]

Everybody says you can't, right?

So why is it that Christmas can be at the same time "too religious" and "too commercialized to the point of complete disassociation from its religious roots?"

Temp job is having a Christmas holiday party next month, and I was asked to make the box for the employees to drop their RSVPs into. So I did. I wrapped it up and put a big sign on it that said "RSVP to the Christmas Party," because I was asked to make a sign for the Christmas party. I didn't question. I just made it.

Today I find out that - after a week of it being on display for the whole office to see - someone complained about the fact that I wrote "Christmas" instead of "holiday." So I was told that we "couldn't be religious" and asked (at least it was done nicely) to redo the sign (I also ended up ripping the tissue paper the box was wrapped in - grrr), and now it's finally sanitized for mass consumption.

So Christmas is too Christian, and we need to avoid using it. But people of all walks (I've heard this even from atheists) complain that Christmas is so focused on commercial crap that it's gotten away from its Christian/pagan/ancient-break-up-the-mid-winter-monotony roots. So what's the average person to do? I'm not even thinking about religious observances here, just general parties and gift/card exchanges. (Speaking of which, I'm getting on the bandwagon on that, but that doesn't belong in a rant.)

So, I know it's not even Thanksgiving yet, but in the spirit of kind brotherhood and platonic internet-friendship - and more than a little bit of rebellion - even if you look at December 25th as just another Saturday, Merry Christmas.

This message is not endorsed by the employees of Insert Robyn's Current Temp Job Here, or anybody else, really, probably even all the way up the United States Government, to be completely honest (did you see Obama's Christmas tree last year?), but I hope there are some people that agree with me.

(Also on the topic of Christmas, I get to see Trans-Siberian Orchestra on Saturday! It shall be amazing.)


middlegirl [userpic]


I had all these grand plans for the fall. Write/film more reviews, do some heraldry, maybe work on my book (and the new short story/memoir that has been sitting in my brain since the last time I finished reading Someday My Prince Will Come by Jerramy Fine... it's sort of a spiritual sequel - the story of a girl who used Someday to inspire her own trip to London. Of course, since I haven't actually been to London yet, the book is unfinished. At this point the book is unfinished and still a little too boring in my estimation for anyone to actually want to read.) But I'm just happy to be writing.

But nope, I got another temp job. I'm here for something like 3 months, so while I'm happy to be pulling in a paycheck, there goes my filming. (I have to film after everyone else goes to bed, because my camera picks up every background sound, like the ice cream truck going by. I have to be here at 7:30, which means I have to go to bed by midnight, which leaves no time for filming and still leaves me a yawning mess in the mornings. Still so not a morning person.) On the upside, as long as I have no projects and don't ignore the phone or walk-ins, I can come and go on the web as I please, so I've already written about a page. (Of course, they have no adblocker on IE here, and so for some reason, I keep ending up at Yahoo! France and seeing ads in French. I know this company is owned by a French company, but this is still the USA. That's a little weird. I'm also seeing innumerable Scientology ads here on LJ. I'm getting really tired of seeing their ads all over the place. From what I've studied of Scientology, they offer none of the answers they claim to in their ads. Long digression is long.) They also have an ergonomic keyboard here, and I'm slowly figuring it out, but I really don't like it. I can has normal non-warped keyboard, plskthxbye?

But I'm really excited/nervous, because London 2012 Olympic organizers finally made their volunteer application available! I'm waiting to see if I need to apply for my passport now before I send in my application, but if I can get it soon, then I'll be on my way! I want this so bad...

Also, Local Radio Station, please to not play the same 25 songs on constant loop all day. Getting really tired of Jack Johnson and that emo Paramore song that needs work on the lyrics. (Really, Paramore, you couldn't find anything else to say in the chorus?) Though you are allowed to keep playing "Misery" by Maroon 5 just as often.

Forget books. Maybe I need to start reviewing music.

Mood anxiousLocation new temp job
Mood anxious
Music That new song by Michael Franti & Spearhead
Tags: olympics, whatever i'm a temp, work, writing
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