Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Melancholy weekend

Memorial day weekend has now come and gone. The weather here in Cleveland was wonderful, 3 days of sunny, 80 degree heat, perfect for outdoor gatherings, especially since the bugs aren't out yet. My weekend was jam packed with parties, projects to get done, and issues that needed to be resolved.

Let's start with some of the issues, my cars stink. Seriously, there is no need to even describe them outside of Adam Sandler's "Piece of Shit car" song. As I may or may not have mentioned, my Stratus wound up needing $600 in work for a busted strut and some other issues last week. After getting that headache resolved, I had the brilliant idea of dropping off my Neon, since it had been shaking at 50-60mph on the highway. The Neon's got a bad set of ball joints, the tires are shot, and the left rear tire was loose. Total price is $800 to get it fixed up. After giving it some thought, I decided that since the car is 9 years old and hasn't had a payment on it in 4 years, $800 seems a bit much and declined for now. On driving home I did discover that the shakes at 50-60 are gone, which turns out to be the result of the loose tire. So while I know the ball joints are bad and I need new tires, the truth it's running fine for my needs at the moment(short errands, since it basically just sits in the driveway and looks ugly). It seems the car had other ideas and one of the crappy tires burst out Sunday night, so after replacing it on Monday, it looks like I'm going to have to bite the bullet and get tires this week.

Thankfully the tire went flat at home in the middle of the night. Such a nice thing to wake up to on Monday morning. I was able to get it out of the way, so Laurie, her mom, and Bronwyn could get started on their roadtrip. But that's enough on cars even though they seem to be dominating my life at the moment.

The ladies were able to get an early start on their road trip to South Carolina. I got a call from Laurie Monday afternoon saying they were halfway to Myrtle Beach, so they found a hotel and spent the afternoon enjoying the pool. Things seemed to go well for Bronwyn's first extended car ride (about 6 hours) and they were planning on ordering a pizza and watching some movies for the night. I'm hoping the weather stays nice for them and they get to enjoy their beach days, they are supposed to arrive in Myrtle Beach today. It's also the first time outside of Bronwyn's toddler bed that she slept on a regular bed and from the call I received Tuesday morning it appears to have went well.

As you can see my Monday seemed to start out bad, I really should have just stayed in bed. After a restless nights sleep on Sunday night, I needed to get up early, as I was driving out to pick my friend Will, as we were going to Mountaineer casino (about a 2 hour drive) for the day. Of course I woke up a bit late and had all sorts of issues getting motivated. After finally getting out of the house and putting the flat tire abomination back in the driveway I headed up to the bank ATM. After starting the day with a flat tire, I had this impending feeling that I just wasn't on the right page for the day, and sure enough I continued to be off track, leaving my ATM card in the machine. I didn't realize I was missing the card until Monday afternoon which further added to my anxiety. Especially since I was 2 hours away from home and unable to look up a number to call and cancel it.

This is the second time I've left it in this particular machine what's worse is previous to the two incidents I've now experienced, I've never left it in a machine before. I don't know if it's this particular machine, sleepy mornings, or that I just don't withdraw cash that often anymore. Since my ATM card is a debit card, I use it for just about everything and withdraw cash once or twice a month at the most. I'm going to tape a big yellow post it note in both of my cars for occasions such as this. "Hey dummy, remember your ATM card"

To add insult to injury when trying to cancel my card the bank number provided by their website had no option for it and simply advised there offices were all closed, so I found a number for a credit card hot line on their site and called them, after walking through the fact that the card was lost, they cancelled my card and gave me the spiel of it coming in the mail with new pin etc. I said, "wait a minute" a new pin, they didn't do that last time for my ATM card, at which point they told me it wasn't the ATM card but my Visa they had just cancelled. "DOH!" and unfortunately there was nothing they could do to stop the cancellation of it, so now I'm without my debit and my Visa for a week.

After the morning bank stop I drove out to my friends and only managed to hit one snag, by taking the wrong road from the exit and tacking on another 20-30 minutes of drive time. See a recurring theme here for the day.

I hadn't seen my friend Will in about a year, I consider Will one of my closest friends and definitely one of the most interesting. To say Will's personality is a bit different is like saying raw jalapenos are a bit hot. For those who know him, you are likely nodding your heads right now.

Part of the reason I wasn't as motivated to hang out with him for the day, was something that happened on Saturday. Will had called me Saturday and immediately started apologizing, the reason being that he had inadvertently mentioned to his neighbor that he was going Sunday and on top of that had asked him if he wanted to go. Which of course his neighbor accepted. Again, not such a bad thing in the scheme of things, but to say I was disappointed would be an understatement. I was really hoping to catchup on how life is now it's a bit hard to catch up when there's a third wheel along. It doesn't help that I don't know this person at all and Will doesn't really know him more then casual 'neighbor' style conversations. Add in the fact that his neighbor is older and retired and there's not a lot of common discussion points.

I am glad I went, while I didn't get to talk with Will as much as I had hoped to, we did get to hang out for a couple hours, given how long it's been since we've seen each other, I suppose it's not such a bad thing. The whole situation was less painful/uncomfortable than I had anticipated, and while it wasn't what I wanted the day to be, I do have to take it as a lesson on how things don't always go the way I expect them. Scratch that, I understand things don't always go how I expect them, but I need to try and not become so agitated when they don't.

I am trying to figure out why the situation bothered me so much, I'm perfectly capable of going with the flow and know that these things happen. I feel like my feelings were selfish and I'm trying to understand to what degree they should be. I seem caught between trying to be understanding and not caring and being selfish. I know a large part of this is driven by the fact that I seem to have limited time to do what I want and my anxiety seems to be coming from trying to control situations in order to maximize the value of that time that I have. It also wouldn't hurt if I remembered how to relax.

That's all I have for now, a ton of other stuff from the weekend that I may or may not get around too. As much as I like having the topics, I know this post is already convoluted and disjointed. And I'm too lazy to go through and try to formulate how to get everything down in my head into one post. (Hell it's hard enough for me to proofread my work, as I'm sure you know from reading. My tendency to write as I think is not a best practice. Too many unnecessary words and I'm sure multiple grammatical miscues. I am working on doing a better job with it though.)

Oh by the way, I got my ass kicked in the Brownie throwdown, not only by Laurie's brownies but my aunt brought some to the party too. I was a distant third from most of the judge's comments.

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