My Snow Day in Gifs

When I first heard we were going to get 2 to 4 inches of snow on Tuesday I was all,

SNOW!!!

Maybe we could have a snow day from work!

SNOW DAY!

Jonathan woke up at 5am to no snow and we were all,

baby_sloth

So we went to work. And I waited. And  waited. And the snow never came. And I was all,

britney_waitingAnd finally, the snow came! I was like,

corgi_dog_snow_flips-5200But the snow didn’t stick to the ground. And then it completely stopped! And I was like,

amypohlerAnd the weather was all “No snow for you!”

fucking_notAnd a poor, snow-deprived Alaskan girl (me) went,

nooooooo

But weather.gov persisted in telling us that we WOULD be getting snow. I was doing this:

hermione

And finally, after a long day of waiting, it came back! It snowed! It snowed!

And then at 4:30, my boss told my team to go home.

So now I’m like,

leo_dancing

The snow isn’t really coming down much anymore, but I’m still doing this:

wino_girlBecause wine + snow = best Tuesday ever!

Ms. McCann Goes to Court

I was on trial for the first time today.

Back up a minute. To November 2013.

I got pulled over for the first time in my life, for the first time in my 13 years of being a licensed driver. I have never, ever been pulled over before.

What was I pulled over for?

“Improper display of license plate.”

That’s right. My license plate was propped on my dashboard because we couldn’t figure out how to bolt it on and I hadn’t gotten a chance to visit a shop. I mean, it was displayed on the front-end of the vehicle. Wasn’t that enough?

Nope. Not for this cranky Monday morning Virginia state trooper.

He trudged up to my window. I handed him my license and registration. He just stared at it.

“You a student?” he asked, frowning (more like sneering) at my Alaska ID.

“No, sir. I just moved here,” I replied. Jonathan and I had barely been in our new house a month.

“When?” he asked.

“Since August,” I said. Mistake #1.

“You’re supposed to get a Virginia driver’s license within 60 days of moving here,” the officer grumbled.

“Oh.”

Sixty days? Really? I have friends who have lived in New York City for nearly a decade and  haven’t changed to a New York area code let alone gotten a New York state ID. I didn’t think it was THAT big of a deal. I was already a registered voter in Hanover county. The DMV didn’t give me crap about that. And after all, I had been waiting to get into our permanent residence before getting a Virginia ID.

By the time all these thoughts had run through my mind, the trooper–who couldn’t even be bothered to look me in the eye–had disappeared back into his car.

I was in shock–I couldn’t make it to 30 without being pulled over. Damn!–but surely, these were both honest mistakes due to my ignorance at being new to the state. He wouldn’t be so mean as to ticket me for these. Right?

Right!

In fact he didn’t ticket me. He gave me two summonses to face a judge in Goochland county court in two months’ time.

He told me to bring a photo of the license plate properly mounted and the judge might let me off.

So, today snuck up on me. It’s a super busy time at work and quite frankly the whole court proceeding seemed like a waste of time. I could pay the fine for the drivers’ license issue, but not the license plate. Since I was going to court anyway, the former just seemed like a dumb idea.

The courthouse is about three minutes from my house. My office is a 40-minute drive from my house. I get to work at 8:30am. I was due in court at 1:00pm.

Suffice it to say, I had to take a long lunch break. (On a day, I might add, where we were so busy only something as necessary as an unnecessary time-sucking appearance in court would be considered an okay-out. Regardless, I felt like a schmuck.)

After stopping at the wrong county building, and then driving a mile down the road to the right building, then running across a parking lot to what looked like a courthouse but was in fact another wrong building, and then finally finding the right building only to be turned away by security because I couldn’t bring my iPad (which contained the photo of my properly mounted license plate) into the courthouse and having to run back to my car, frustratedly fighting back tears at this point, and now ten minutes late and expecting a “YOU’RE DISRESPECTING THE COURT!” screaming lecture from the judge, I found myself back at the security scanner and the two white-haired gentlemen guards, who tried to reassure my tear-streaked face that I was not in fact late and that “everyone’s court time is 1:00pm.” Oh, great. That meant that there were a few people ahead of me. How long would I have to be there? I had already been gone from work for an hour.

They pointed me to the bathroom where I could dry my raw, puffy eyes. I stared at myself momentarily in the mirror: hideous. Red and blotchy, mascara smudged, eyeliner all but gone, acne scars standing out as red as stoplights. Fuck it, I told myself, and went outside to stand in front of a glass window manned by a friendly looking middle-aged blonde woman.

“Miss!” the two gentlemen security guards said. They pointed to the doors next to the kiosk. “The courtroom is over there.”

“Don’t I need to sign in?” I asked, so confused, so not used to this sort of thing. They told me they would just call my name inside.

I stepped into the courtroom — the crowded courtroom.

There had to be at least thirty people in there, all waiting to be tried next to the same jerk trooper who’d pulled me over.

The defendants were being called alphabetically. Even though I was 10 minutes late, 15 if you counted my time in the bathroom, they were only on the As. Pretty much everyone was being tried for speeding. Mostly excessive speeding. The judge let most of the people off at only nine miles over the speed limit. Some people he left off scot-free. Others he couldn’t not give some sort of penalty. One woman in particular, a middle-aged suburban white woman, had had a reckless driving infraction before and the judge couldn’t do much.

The judge and the trooper were pretty polite. As long as you plead guilty and were polite, they’d pretty much let you off with nothing but a court fee.

I took a seat, flustered, red-faced, and sweaty, my eyes still somewhat leaky. I couldn’t stop shaking, I was so frustrated with every stupid thing I’d already done to myself that afternoon.

I started to feel confident that they would be nice to me when I got up there. Sure, the trooper wasn’t the warmest, fuzziest guy when he pulled me over, but maybe he’d just been having a case of the Mondays that day. I knew I’d get off. There was no reason to charge me with anything.

When I got up there, though, the trooper went straight into Dick Mode.

He had DMV proof that I’d gotten my VA license right away, so that was dismissed almost immediately.

But the judge questioned me about my improperly displayed license plate.

Why hadn’t I bolted it on? Didn’t I know there were bolts pre-drilled into the bumper?

No, I replied. We’d bought the car used and it came from a state that doesn’t require a  plate in the front. There were no holes or bolts on my bumper. We tried to put it on before but it wasn’t working. I’d been told the plate was alright to be displayed in the window, so I figured I’d get to it eventually (I left that out) and it was fine as it was.

NOPE!

The judge asked the trooper if I’d said that when I was pulled over. He said I didn’t. I tried to counter that by saying that yes, I had said exactly that. But the trooper said all I’d told him was that the person who sold me the car said it was okay to prop the plate on my dash. Lies! 

The trooper (or the judge, I don’t remember) asked me if I’d brought a photo of my mounted plate. I said I had, but it was on my iPad–

“I TOLD you to bring in a photo! A PRINTED photo!” the trooper yelled at me. Yelled! 

What was his deal? Did he get his jollies making people feel dumb? I had no idea I wasn’t allowed to bring in electronics, and I said at much. The trooper just scolded me again. What am I, I thought, a kindergartner? Gee, some of us haven’t ever had any traffic violations, so sorry I don’t know what I can and can’t bring into a county courthouse!

Meanwhile, the people before me had been driving 10 to 15 MPH over the speed limit and they’d gotten off without being made to feel small. I was the only person who hadn’t inadvertently or otherwise put others in danger.

Ooh, look at the chick from Alaska with her improperly displayed license plate! Danger to society! 

The judge took my word that I had mounted my plate–and I had–but the trooper looked at the judge and said, “If she hasn’t”–he turned to me–”I’m sure I’ll find her.”

Really compadre?

I was so frustrated that as soon as I was out of the courtroom my eyes started to leak again. I wanted to make snarky remarks to the trooper, ask him why he felt the need to be such a brat. But that wouldn’t have helped anything.

For now, I’ve been let off with no penalties save for that $96 court fee (bullshit!) that I wasn’t allowed to waive because for some reason an improperly displayed license plate required an appearance in court.

What a waste of time. But, thankfully, that’s all over. Now it’s just a matter of getting that $96 court fee paid.

All donations welcome.

Let’s close the books on this Monday.

Stop Trying to Make Me Feel Old

The Garth Brooks song goes, “I’m much too young to feel this damn old.”

My modified version? “I’m still young so stop trying to make me feel old.”

I like the 1990s nostalgia lists, but enough already. I’m getting tired of it all, Buzzfeed. The most recent list I read, entitled “32 Things that will Make ’90s Girls Feel Old” didn’t really make me feel old. It was just the same crap reiterated. No doy, things happened quite a few years ago. Ginger Spice is 40? Big deal. I’m no 14 anymore, either. That’s not a shocker. People age. That’s nothing new. Justin Bieber was born in 1994? So what? I was in 4th grade in 1994. My sister was in 7th. I’m 29 and she’s 32. There’s nothing shocking about this.

I never quite understood the fear of turning 30, even growing up. I wanted to be 30 when I was 17. I wanted to blast past my 20s. I was sick of people telling me “You’re just a baby” when I was only 22. “Um, no, I’m not a baby,” I thought. “I have a job and health insurance and a car payment and a lease, and I could be tried as an adult for the last four years. Babies can’t even vote.” There was an episode of “Friends,” the age of which the internet loves to remind us is now 20 years old (e.g., “a baby” in human years apparently), where Rachel turns 30. The other characters reflect on their own 30th birthdays, and if memory serves most of them freaked out. Not sure how old I was then, but I was a teenager and I didn’t see the big deal about turning 30.

Quite frankly, the only thing that’s a bummer about turning 30, for me, is that I’m still riddled with credit card debt from when I was 22. I hear people say “I wish I could be in my 20s again.” Nah, the only reason I’d like to be in my 20s again would be to tell my 22-year-old self to get a roommate and cut up the credit cards. Alas, I was determined to be a grown-up and I insisted on living alone, paying $1,050 a month in rent while making only $28,000 a year at my first job. Well, these things happen. We live and we learn, as the cliche goes.

I’m still young. I have plenty of time to get married, travel the world, get published (that’s the one thing I thought I’d have done several times over by the time I was 30 — but hasn’t happened — and my only “regret”), make more money, and get out of debt. Plenty of time.

For now, I’ll focus on traveling and getting out of debt any way I can. If marriage and publishing and babies come along some day, great. If not, I have an awesome family and awesome niece and nephews, and I am plenty happy with my life—and my age. So stop trying to make me feel so damn old.

I'm told teenagers now have "'90s parties." Well, I guess we had that coming.

I’m told teenagers now have “’90s parties.” Well, I guess we had that coming.

(I will say, though, I had no idea teenagers were already throwing ’90s parties! I guess now I know how my aunt feels about people throwing ’80s parties.)

Wednesday 2, Lorrie 0

Tried to take my destroyed jeans (see previous post) back to Target for an exchange. They are probably only 6 months old! Turns out, Target conveniently discontinued that particular style and it’s no longer in their system, therefore the store won’t exchange for another (EXACT SAME with a different name) pair of jeans.

Oh, this is not over. You will not beat me, Wednesday. I’m going straight to Target corporate for this one.

Leftover Chinese Food and Second Breakfast

I watched all three Lord of the Rings movies before Christmas. My favorite part of the whole series is when the four hobbits first leave the Shire, and Pippin inquires about eating breakfast, and after being told they’d already eaten, very concernedly asks about second breakfast and elevensies.

Aragorn: Gentlemen! We do not stop ’til nightfall.
Pippin: But what about breakfast?
Aragorn: You’ve already had it.
Pippin: We’ve had one, yes. But what about second breakfast?
[Aragorn stares at him, then walks off.]
Merry: Don’t think he knows about second breakfast, Pip.
Pippin: What about elevensies? Luncheon? Afternoon tea? Dinner? Supper? He knows about them, doesn’t he?
Merry: I wouldn’t count on it.

This has always made me laugh. Because I pretty follow the hobbit schedule of meals:

Hobbit_900

This morning, first breakfast consisted of fresh juice (carrots, apple, ginger, celery, and cucumber–very refreshing) and several cups of coffee. I usually eat second breakfast around 9:30 or 10:00. Today, it was leftover Chinese food, which, being incredibly greasy, does not make for a very good second breakfast and should have been saved for elevensies, which is usually something savory and often half of whatever lunch I brought that day, vegan ramen, or roasted nuts with tea. “Afternoon Tea” today consisted of more lunch leftovers and a Coca Cola (not my healthiest day, obviously), and I come from Alaska, where there is no difference between “supper” and “dinner,” which means I should substitute supper for “cocktail hour(s).” Then dinner.

That is all.

Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring quote from http://www.moviemistakes.com/film1778/quotes

Singular Behavior

I have never lived with a lover before. In fact, I am a particularly terrible roommate. Primarily due to the fact that I am particular about the cleanliness of space, specifically shared space. What you do with your space? I don’t care. But if you don’t do the dishes, I want to wring your neck.

But here’s the weird thing: Living with my boyfriend, I’m the one who makes the messes.

Yes, he leaves his clothes on the floor, but so do I. In fact I have an utter disdain for folding and storing my clothes after they’ve been washed. I will let the basket of clean clothes sit on the floor of the closet for two weeks, caring only because they block the walkway or make the room unsightly.

I like clean spaces. I do! I’m far more productive in a clean, organized space. But I have a strange aversion to actually putting things in their proper places with any regularity. And I mean <i>any</i> regularity. I love clean laundry, but I loathe putting it away. I live for an empty kitchen sink, especially in the mornings, but there is nothing I dread more than unloading a packed dishwasher at any given time of day.

I never understood how much I loved my time alone until I found myself in a serious relationship. There is an episode of “Sex and the City” that mentions so-called “secret single behavior.” I never quite understood that, that concept of not fully being yourself in front of or around your lover. Though truthfully, that’s not, I’ve realized, the issue. In fact, I’ve found, in my case, that it’s the holistic circumstance rather than any particular act.

love to sit on my couch with my cat and a glass of wine filled far above the line of polity and watch bad reality TV or random documentaries on Netflix (whichever is more interesting or, more likely, available) and paint my nails.

I used to paint my nails every day to every-other-day.

Now? I’m lucky if I can be bothered to paint them once a month.

I am consistently ashamed of my nails.

As if having hideous feet wasn’t enough.

I miss doing my nails every day to every-other-day.

I suppose now is the time to find that spot in the between.

Tonight? I’m doing just that.

And even though I’m a little sad that I’m not snuggled up next to Jonathan, I’m pretty damn content.