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Posts Tagged ‘my life is so hard’

One of the common pregnancy signs that proved to be extremely true early on was a heightened sense of smell. I was picking up soap scents just from being in the same room as someone who had bathed in the past 24 hours. I could identify what the neighbors were cooking from down the hall. Perfumes, exhaust, and that odor that occurs when the metro puts on the brakes were all especially pungent.

But nothing was (and still is) as big an offender as cigarette smoke. And nowhere was (is) it as bad as on the bus.

I don’t love the smell of smoke – stale or otherwise – in the first place. But I’ve always been able to tolerate it. Until now.

The difference now is that I don’t just smell the smoke while someone is smoking or right after they put it out. It lingers. And I can smell it on someone probably hours after they’ve smoked. (I don’t know this for a fact. I’ve never asked a stranger how long it’s been since his or her last cigarette.) I do know that I’ve seen people at the bus stop who were NOT smoking, but who I could smell smoke on once we were crushed together on a packed bus.

At times, it made me nauseous, but it also led to this exchange (when we were still living in the city):

caninecomparison

I laughed out loud and then realized that this might be one time when an animal comparison is not only allowed, but completely valid.

As fun as it is to currently have a nose comparable to Manny’s, I’m just thankful that this heightened sense of smell is temporary.

It is temporary, right?

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After one week of my new hour-plus commute, I can safely say that it’s not as terrible as I thought it’d be.

It’s long, yes, but seamless. Everything runs on time, and everyone is used to their routine.

Also, there’s order, and it’s wonderful.

I know that sounds like a weird thing to praise, but let me explain.

If you’ve ever taken a bus in DC, especially during prime commuting hours, you know that it’s pretty much chaos.

People mill around the stop until the bus pulls up, and then everyone crowds around the door, ready to push other commuters out of the way. And it’s nearly impossible for riders to exit the bus (even though it’s in the best interest of those trying to claw their way on), with everyone hemmed in around the open door.

Basically, it’s not a fun way to start your morning. Or end your day.

At my new bus stop, though, things are different. There is no chaos. There is no pushing. There is no trampling.

There is just a beautiful, calm line of people, waiting patiently to board the bus.

You read that right. I’m excited about a line. A simple queue. Simple, and yet so welcome after years of fighting to get one foot on the steps of the bus before the driver can close the doors.

It might take me over an hour to get to work now, but my day no long starts with shoving, cutting people off, or chaos.

And it’s totally worth it.

Thanks, suburbia.

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But life is full of surprises.

Yesterday, my closet revolted. Maybe it was angry from all the recent purging. Maybe it was offended by my fashion sense. It’s hard to tell.

I had opted for a black pencil skirt that morning. Classic choice, right? I pulled it on, fastened the hook and eye without issue, and proceeded to zip up.

But the zipper went on strike about three inches shy of the top of the skirt.

At first, I was optimistic. I’d hit snags before. I zipped down and up, trying to catch the snag unawares and break on through.

Then the nasty little thing threw me a curve ball. All of a sudden, the zipper wasn’t moving anywhere. It was camped out in no man’s land (where it remains today), still at that same three-inches-shy mark.

And so I was stuck. With very minimal wiggle room. And, naturally, I was running late. Because these sorts of things never happen when you have loads of time on your hands.

I made one last ditch effort to yank the zipper up and down, hoping to get at least another inch of space so that I could pull the skirt off. And the zipper responded by attacking me.

Talk about not fighting fair.

The way I figured, I had a few options:

  1. Safety pin the top three inches and go about my day.
  2. Wake up BNF and ask for his help in ripping the zipper down.
  3. Take the skirt off over my head.

Now you can see where the post title comes from.

I had tried sliding the skirt off the same way I put it on. But the combination of it being zipped most of the way up and my ample butt made that impossible. So over the head seemed the best course of action. Except for that little obstacle known as boobs.

I don’t want to admit how long it took me to get out of that skirt. Suffice it to say that it was a lot longer than it took to get in it. There was a lot of wriggling, a lot of grunting, probably a pulled muscle or two, and way more cursing than I’m usually prone to before 8am.

In the end? I really think the skirt won.

The zipper is still holding strong in no man’s land; it left my finger with a boo-boo; and the only “wounds” it has are some little white streaks.

I really hope it doesn’t inspire the rest of my closet.

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I admit it: this was harder than I thought.

I didn’t have 50 big things I was willing to part with. And I disagree with the idea of throwing out duplicates just because. When I run out of shampoo/toothpaste/lotion/floss/etc. I’m going to be glad I have more on hand.

So, that said, I’m sure there are more things I could toss, but I did get to 50.
I went by similar rules as this blog. I counted like things – magazines, hangers, outdated resumes – as one. However, I counted each clothing item separately (just like she did). (Even though when I mentioned that to the boyfriend he scoffed.)

It might not look like a lot from the photos, but it certainly felt like it while I was collecting.

1. Old econ slides – I never need them again!
2. A folder with old apartment papers and a copy of the lease I signed 3 years ago. I already have my security deposit back; I think I’m okay.
3. Old, outdated resumes.
4. Old grad school applications.
5. Sign-up sheets for tournaments from the camp I work at each summer. Seriously – why do I have these?
6. Running information from races that I did in 2009. Unnecessary.
7. A skull. I got it at a white elephant party in 2009. I don’t know why it’s still around.
8. Green sweater – never wear.
9. Warrior Dash t-shirt – never wear. (See Cla? I do get rid of race shirts!)
10. Denim slacks – rarely wear and no longer flattering.
11. Striped button-up shirt – too short and too tight. C’est la vie.
12. Pink cell phone case – no longer necessary.
13. Snow globe perfume – never wear.
14. Rusted shut kitchen scissors – unusable.
15. Magnets.
16. Makeup – never use.
17. The basket and candy that came with it. I usually keep baskets like this because, you know, they’re good for something. But not anymore (this time).

18. Stand up mirror – never use.
19. Old phone charger – I don’t even know which phone it belongs to.
20. Lanyard – never use.
21. “Geek” glasses from my very first race. Sentimental, but still…
22. Post-its.
23. Old iPod case.
24. CD case.
25. A journal of academic papers that I’ve never even read through.
26. Suction cup hooks.
27. Some sort of running tape that I got in one of my race packets. I held on to it “just in case” but have never used it.
28. Army 10-Miler hat – never wear.
29. Travel mug – never use.
30. Notepads, originally from a stocking stuffer (sorry, Mama).
31. A chain.
32. Old assembly instructions.
33. Hairbrush – I don’t need three.
34. Another running goodie that I’ve never used – presumably it adds extra storage space for your keys or what have you.
35. The box. I’ve kept that box since I moved to the area in 2007. “It’s a good box for storage,” I thought. Well, maybe if I didn’t have so many things to store, I could rid of the box, as well. So I am.
36. Faux Burberry belt – never wear.
37. Little jewelry bag – I have two.
38. Navy dress pants – too high-waisted for me.
39. A puck. I don’t know.
40. Purse – never use.
41. Skinny black belt – never wear.
42. Magazines – from 2009. Time to go.

43. Bag of race goodies (on the left). There are eye drops, mints, coupons, etc. in there. Same things from every race and every time I fail to use them.
44. Old beat up binder.
45. Hangers.
46. Over sized tote/grocery bag (plenty more where that came from).
47. Storage bag for jersey sheets – unnecessary.
48. Curtains – don’t use.
49. Old mattress pad bag – unnecessary.
50. Red Wonder Woman boots. The “leather” is cracking and they’re no longer pretty. Very sad.

Phew.

I’d like to say I’ll do this once every few months or so, but let’s be realistic: I probably won’t do it until Cla challenges me again.

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Last week, Cla sent me this message:

“I challenge you.”

Accompanied by this link:

The Throw Out 50 Things Challenge

It’s exactly how it sounds. Throw out 50 superfluous items around your home, counting like items as one (i.e. 20 magazines equals one item).

Now, Cla knows first hand how much trouble I have throwing things out. And I know, first hand, how hard it is for her to walk around my apartment and not end up with a pile of things to toss.

It takes willpower on both our parts.

However, this is still something I need to do, probably once a season. And there’s no better way to get me to do something than to challenge me.

So, Cla: Challenge Accepted.

I’m giving myself to the end of this week, since I know how long it may take me to part with this knick-knack or that trinket or some other memory. But come Saturday, the apartment will be 50 items more spacious – which I’m pretty sure will help with overall stress levels.

(And I can always draw inspiration from here.)

Wish me luck, and let me know if you, too, feel the desire to participate in your own 50 item purge.

Or am I the only one who needs a challenge (and, apparently, accountability)  in order to get rid of my belongings?

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Dear Jefe,

I know you didn’t notice my meltdown yesterday because you were too busy changing every insignificant detail of your presentation. You barely noticed the fact that I was still in the office more than two hours after I should have left, and you actually left before me. I’m sure you had to hurry off to an econ class, as well.

I don’t mind making changes. I actually enjoy working on these presentations because they’re good exposure to all of the surveys we do and the information we collect. What I don’t like is how you still don’t understand that every time you say, “Let’s just put an extra space in there,” it means more than the five seconds of work you think it’ll take. Every time you ask me to create a new chart, I have to do it from scratch, and that takes time. Sometimes, with the things you ask, I think you think that PowerPoint is magic, or that I am, but neither is true.

Though I’ll take the compliment.

I have tried to explain to you that I am working as fast as I can, and trying to accommodate your every whim. Please understand this.

And next time, if you could let me know about any changes before the day you’re supposed to leave for a conference, it would really help with me keeping my sanity.

I don’t think my benefits cover crazy.

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I’m wondering how you feel about the de-friending option on Facebook.

I’ve used it only once, after friending an ex-boyfriend and consequently realizing that I didn’t actually want to be updated on his new life and girlfriend (now wife). But that was 5 years ago, and I haven’t used the option since.

I’ve been the de-friendee on four occasions (that I know of), and the first one totally took me by surprise. The next two I should have seen coming – and I’m frankly not too sad about it. But the fourth one – that’s the style, if you will, I’d be most tempted to go with, myself.

See, that fourth “friend” and I aren’t really close at all. We were in the same sorority, but probably haven’t spoken since she graduated. There’s no animosity on either end. We didn’t have some huge falling out. We’re just more of acquaintances than friends, and there’s currently no tag for that on Facebook.

And so, I hold no grudge for her paring down her friend list. And I do know a few people who pare down on a regular basis. But, even though there’s a part of me that wants to do that, I wouldn’t want it to be misconstrued (if anyone actually noticed at all).

So what do you think about de-friending? Do you do it? Or have you had it done to you? And do you think it sends a certain message? Or can it actually be as innocent as, it’s nothing personal, we just don’t really talk…ever?

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