Friday, February 27, 2009

Cats crossing my path

Last night I was watching "House" for a brief moment and the patient was sure he was cursed. He talked of being the most unlucky kid in the world (for full synopsis click here). I was intrigued by what he might have, being highly unlucky myself, until the first real diagnosis was Anthrax and Chase commented that Gabe might be the most unlucky kid ever. Off went the tv.

This morning two black cats crossed my path, narrowly missing my tires as I drove to work. I sure hope I don't have Anthrax....

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Cops and Jury Duty

Question of the Day: "Would you be more likely to believe a police officer testimony because of their job?"

I recently (Tuesday) served my civic duty of jury duty for the City of Brotherly Love. Don't get me wrong here... I enjoyed having the valuable time of my day dedicated to reading magazines I was smart enough to bring while I was shuffled back and forth between uncomfortable wooden pews.

Following a friend's advice, I arrived approximately five minutes late. Apparently, my friend gave this advice to everyone on jury duty that day as there were a plethora of people who had chosen to not quite be on time. I passed thru security with little to no issues and entered Room 101. Finding myself with little understanding of just exactly what was going on here, I grabbed my mini-golf pencil and form 1 & 2 and hustled back to the theatre chairs all the way at the back that meant a little extra leg room. I filled in the information at the top of both sheets, listening for my name to be associated with a juror number (secretly wishing for juror #4)...

Peter Bartlett: I didn't bribe anyone.

Casey Novak: (sarcastically) Nooo... that fifty thousand dollar payment to juror number four was charity.

But alas, just as I began my filling in my answers to the questions on page #1 and #2, I was given the number 6. I had made it all the way to the question with which I started my blog and a flashback started to occur...

***Enter whispy dry ice fumes....

Monday, I am driving thru downtown Philadelphia and find myself at 16th and Chestnut at 1:38PM. I must go approximately 4 city blocks until I enter a covered garage and proceed upstairs to a meeting being held at 2PM. As I pass 16th, the two cars in front of me turn left leaving me the solo driver in my lane for the next block as several cars deep are waiting to turn right on 15th. As I approach the intersection of Chestnut and 15th, three youths streak across the intersection across traffic. Please note I had a green light.

Due to the actions of these fine young men, I now find myself slamming on the brakes. Since they clear the street before I even have the chance to hit them, I now clear the intersection as it turns yellow out of the corner of my eye. I am now stuck at the next light, as lights inevitably change in unison. When the cars behind me advance, I see a cop car pull up behind me and then flash its lights.

Now. The following things are true:

1. I drive a bright red passat.

2. My age is sometimes mistaken and I have been asked unreasonable questions about my age in multiple locations (example: at 22, I was asked if I would be driving soon. True story.)

3. I believe that I am a good driver.

So when I see the lights, I think, "They should have turned at 15th. There is a lot of traffic here and a bus on my right. How are they going to get past?" Naivety.

Folks, they stopped that cop car right there, got out and approached my vehicle. Having had my car broken into twice last year, I actually did not know where my registration and insurance was at first and the lady cop to my left was very curt when she informed me to stop freaking out because I hadn't gotten a ticket yet so my attitude could go a long way towards helping that. Also, I needed to "turn my radio down!" (Note to cops out there: Please do not speak to humans in a tone used for a naughty dog. It tends to bring out the b*tch in all of us). She asked me my age (check the license lady) and asked me if I knew why I was stopped (obviously not given my surprise at your tapping on my window as I sat in traffic) and then I then sat in the left lane blocking traffic until 2:02 when they brought my papers back and told me to have a safe day.

...smoky fog clears****

Do I have any bias towards the Philly Police department who has not shown up to my car break-in and then wasted twenty minutes of my day not writing me a ticket but warning me not to try to hit people who are jaywalking while I have a green light? I think I have done enough jury duty for this city for a while.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Wardrobe malfunction

My friend ON is a successfully highly motivated business woman. While relatively few unlucky things happen to her as she is the consummate planner of all things, she does have some upsetting items that have recently taken place due to her planning failing her*.

On a recent trip to DC for work to host lunch and meetings, she found herself standing at the train station at 6:57AM waiting for the train here and noticed that she had two right shoes of different black heels.

Let that sink in folks. Two black right heels. Nice. Luckily she was wearing semi-acceptable (although not for a suit) black casual shoes and not uggs.

The text I received at 6:33 PM sealed the deal on the day, however:
"I have just discovered that I have been wearing my undies inside out all day."

7 am waiting for the Acela and realized the shoes were wrong... Not to mention the incessant wedgies all day long... That is quite the upsetting day.

*Planning, I have noticed, eliminates the room for some unlucky things to happen to people. Not necessarily me as the unlucky things that happen to me often have no rhyme or reason behind them. But I am trying to take on planning as a concept to avoid some everyday mishaps and will soon have to post about my first step towards elimination of strife: the day I matched my sock drawer... Stay tuned...

Thursday, February 5, 2009

ET, Phone Home

Today I expect to receive my replacement phone. Replacement because two days ago my phone (bought 8/21/08) turned on and got stuck on the verizon logo. It flashed it actually, as if taunting my every attempt to reset and restart. I am not super abusive to my phones... ok this is sort of a lie. I once threw a phone off the roof I was standing on to the lower roof about 14 feet below in an arching dramatic toss of aggravation but this was after it malfunctioned in the middle of an irate call to a missing contractor. I am abusive but have good intentions and treat phones relatively nicely until they start to malfunction. This is when the throwing kicks in.
This makes the first LG chocolate 3 I have replaced but brought to mind my other cellular devices and the way in which they were replaced....

LG Chocolate Version 1.0:

I have owned three of these bad boys, one getting stuck in the open position...because there is nothing better than buying a phone for its small stylish design and then carrying a double sized bulge in your pocket. "Is that a banana in your....." You get the idea.

One got caught spinning randomly when the wheel was touched or not touched thru any number of screens, options, numbers, messages, pictures.. you name it, it scrolled... Made it awful hard to text or call or answer or well, in general use the phone at all.

And then there was the last straw. The one that pushed me to the Chocolate 3.
I had a demon phone that called people. It called people when it was shut. It called people upon opening it. When you tried to answer an incoming call, it became normal for people to wait up to 15 seconds to listen for answer because I would be maniacally hitting clear in order to stop the new call that was happening over the incoming call. I learned quickly that hitting end hung up both calls. It took over calling people about a month or so before I could update my phone for "free". About one week before the update, it also learned how to text. I owned "The Turk" of cellphones and gave it all away for functionality. Plus, I was worried about Sarah Connor coming after me to destroy it before it could become Skynet....

I don't remember much about the specific name of the phone before the Chocolate Escapades but I do remember it almost breaking in half, causing me to believe a slider phone was much more resilient. This was from overuse, claimed the insurance people. (This was a replacement I received only a month prior.) I dropped one of these in a parking lot. I left one on a train I was riding from Philadelphia to NYC that was headed on to Boston. I lost one in a bar one night. (i love the insurance program Verizon puts out. I always max out. Always.)

At the same time, I had a durable Nextel for work. At a fitness expo we were working to give Keystone Rugby a little greater Philadelphia exposure, I accidentally snapped my phone into its holster a little too strongly. It skittered across the parking lot and slide under a car, falling into the only storm water sewer basin in the entire parking lot. One hour later, a soaked KM, a non-wet RH (who had gone for help or supplies but had found kittens if I remember correctly and sort of forgot to come back for a while) and myself had rescued the phone mostly thru KM's genius, a coat hanger, some string, a pair of plyers and a couple of sticks. It never turned back on and I was told I should have just reported it stolen. The sim card was bad too.

Ah, the memories of phones gone past....

Monday, February 2, 2009

My face is getting better

Ladies and Gentlemen, the time is drawing near when my skin will be clear....

This will close the facial disaster unless these last few items don't go away and I scar for life. Then we will have a whole new topic to discuss....