Deum, vitam, litteras amemus
.:.:. :.:::. ..:::::. ::::..
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]

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]


I don't think I've talked much about it here, but I've got myself a new project: an advent calendar podcast. Similar to Grant's Advent Calendar, but different in that I've got all sorts of activities planned for the 25 days until Christmas. Today was supposed to be putting up decorations. Except once I found my decorations and got them up (and my room cleaned, seeing as the entire internet was going to see my room), the night slipped away and it was almost midnight - my sort-of unofficial posting deadline. And while I'm filming my post, my camera battery dies. I quickly ran over to grab my iPod touch, hoping to use that camera instead. Except I forgot that it, too, died today. I ended up using my cell phone to take still shots instead.

And then I remembered that I still had laundry in the washer.

So it's drying now, and I have to wait for it, because if I let it sit overnight, all my nice work clothes will get horribly wrinkled. Not that it really matters, because tomorrow's Casual Friday and my last day at Temp Job, but still. And after going to bed at midnight since September, I'm crashing hard at 1:30 am when I used to be able to stay up until 3 or 4 in the morning.

So I'm going to go check on my laundry, and please go take a look at my advent-ivity calendar and make all my trouble tonight worthwhile. :)

The room does look nice, though, and I got to watch MST3K ("Santa Claus") while I decorated and cleaned.

And my laundry's done, so I am so going to bed.

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 am currently missing the season premiere of Community because my sisters have taken over the TV to watch Bones. Thanks to the fact that we now have AT&T U-verse, they each have DVR boxes in their rooms. (I'm the only one with a room too small for a TV.) So why is it that I still can't watch what I want to watch on TV?

Currently contenting myself with Community on DVD. I haven't seen the early episodes since they came on, so I'm having fun reliving the awesomeness that was Jeff and Pierce's Spanish presentation. The special features are awesome.

Mood annoyedMood annoyed
Music At Least it was Here (aka the Community theme) - The 88
Tags: argh, i watch too much tv
middlegirl [userpic]

(The above is French for "My time will come." I reworked it from something Anne Boleyn wrote in her prayer book. I'm thinking of making it a secondary heraldic motto. Maybe work in an armillary sphere somehow, seeing as she doodled it next to the note...)

So Lauren got a job yesterday. Shannon used to be a courtesy clerk at the grocery store down the street, and she got promoted, which left an opening, so Lauren applied. She ended up getting hired at the location across town, though.

I'm being supportive and happy for her, but still a little bitter. We're all hard workers (that good old German/Protestant work ethic), but I've been trying for 2 years to get a steady job, and Lauren nails it on her first try.

Of course, the difference is that I'm getting labelled "overqualified" for the kinds of jobs Lauren's perfect for (being a college student and with little experience), and I have to resort to "playing for higher stakes," aka most likely an office job. As in, the people who aren't hiring right now. So, yeah, I've been temping for two months straight, but this most recent temp job has been a week at a time, and I'd like a little more job security. (Actually, it's a little aggravating, since the workload is dwindling, and I assumed this would be my last week, but nope - one more week. At least.) Plus the three of us have all decided to save up for a trip to London. I would be so much more bitter if they got to go and I couldn't. (I'm the rampant Anglophile in the family. My room's decor theme is London.)

Hence the Anne Boleyn paraphrase. Last year was such an annus horribilis, to borrow the term (meaning "horrible year," possibly coined by Queen Elizabeth II when she described 1992, in which three of her children's marriages dissoved - the fourth not being married yet - and Windsor Castle burned down), and I was hoping 2010 would be its opposite, annus mirabilis ("wondeful year," which EIIR did not coin). The year so far has been great - lots of temp work and grand adventures - but I really want that last cog in the wheel: a steady job.

But I have hope. My time is coming. I mean, with the other four people in my house now constantly employed, it's gotta be my turn sometime! I was getting frustrated with the whole job hunt thing. But now I'm determined.

Mon temps viendra.

On a completely unrelated note, I have to go to a family reunion tomorrow all centered around the one crazy branch of my family aka the one with all the fighting - the one where we can go down the list and say "Yeah, she definitely won't be coming." Poor Nana - I don't think she sees her relatives much, but it's not her fault her side of the family is all crazy. Shannon and I will most likely be the only twenty-somethings there (My dad's favorite cousin has two kids our age, but they're married now and not coming. They were smart.) I'm hoping to sneak out to Old Navy at some point during the day. If I don't survive, tell 'em I went down fighting. And I took as many of them down with me as I could.


And I'm going to bed now, I swear.

middlegirl [userpic]

So, I really owe you all a post about how awesome my Paul McCartney Experience was. Because it was so awesome, witness must be paid to said awesomeness. Yes, it was that awesome. (Think I've used "awesome" enough times so far?) But to be honest, between continual temping and trying (and failing) to get my next book review filmed, I haven't had a lot of time to sit and collect thoughts on much of anything. I've had about two or three fairly good ideas spinning around my head, but I haven't even been able to squeeze more than two or three sentences about each one. But tonight I'm making myself do this, because I really want to be fairly emo about today, but I want to focus on good things first. The whining will come later.


'And the first one said to the second one there, I hope you're having fun...' )

Mood tiredMood tired
Music Take On Me - A-ha
Tags: adventures, argh, squee!!!, yes i'm a youtube addict
middlegirl [userpic]

Well, I was thinking I'd post a little quick note mentioning my birthday present: a new puppy. We got him this morning, and to be honest, I was slightly ambivalent towards the idea of getting a new dog, but Westley (yes, we named him after The Princess Bride) is a cutie and a sweetie. I think I'm still at the point where I don't love him yet, but I do like him, and he makes everybody else happy, so sure I would have liked something else for my birthday, but whatever. (Before you think I'm giving up my birthday present for the sake of family, my sisters and I all have June birthdays, and Westley was a gift for all of us. So I'm giving up my 1/3 of a present for the sake of family. I might make it up to myself later.)

Then Mom and Armine woke me up from a nap (I've been up late editing my video review for Android Karenina, and I lost all my work last night, so I was up extra late) to tell me that the upset stomach we thought he had wasn't stopping, and that the vet thought it was parvo. So I was going to post about how I really couldn't do this again after I lost Sammie back in August. How this is a really sucky thing to happen to a birthday present and sure I don't coo over him and hold him like everybody else does, but that doesn't mean I want him to die, and I'm going to have to apologize to my sisters but I don't think I can just pick another puppy out of a lineup to replace this one. (Long run-on sentence is long.) But apparently we just got word from Dad and Hrayr that the vet says it's not parvo, but the vet hasn't seen him yet to know what it is. So now we're back to the point where I do like him, and I'm sure he'll grow on me, but he still isn't allowed in my room. (For the record, neither is Zoe, who hates the new interloper.)

I think this is what the TV Tropes site calls "mood whiplash."

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