Sunday, September 07, 2008

half ass

...or is it half assed? Or half-ass? Damn it, I can't even title a blog post these days. I started this one weeks ago and couldn't even manage to hit the "publish post" button.

I feel like I've been running on tilt for the last three weeks. And it was bound to happen, really. I always joke that I'll be running at full speed and then, whomp: I'll just fall over and it will all be over.

My out-of-wackiness started the day after the fair ended. I had a frustrating day at work (as so many are, I just don't write about it), and it was one of the nights that I stayed until 8:00 to finish stuff up. I went home, fed the cat and went to bed. I woke up in a panic at midnight, realizing that I'd forgotten to pick up my projects from the fair, including two pretty valuable PEZ dispensers. I grabbed the entry book and read the bold type warning that basically said: anything that is not picked up is gone forever, dumbass stupidhead poopyperson [I might be paraphrasing a bit].

I had a finance committee meeting the next morning. I have a hard time sitting still through those on a good day, let alone when I pictured my precious circus pony Pez hitting the dumpster. That meeting rolled straight over to another meeting. My plan was to race to the fair and throw myself on the mercy of whoever I needed to. I was dashing out the door when I decided to check my messages since I hadn't been at my desk all morning. Woo hoo! One of the state fair volunteers remembered me from all of my visits to the building and knew that I worked at Second Helpings. When I didn't pick my stuff up, he rescued it for me. Yippee! Thanks Dave!

My last three weeks have included things like staying late at work, having several programs and files open and not clicking on "save" enough and having everything freeze up and get lost. I know Ralph, Jesus Saves! Which then made me push the limits on turning in my column. And it is really bad for me to know that I can submit it a week late and it still gets to print.

I had two groups of touring musicians stay at my house last month and friends were generous enough to put me up. The first group was lovely and I always look forward to Amy's visits. Amy Speace has played to thousands of people and was hand-picked by Judy Collins as her opening act. I was disappointed in the turnout in Indianapolis - only a handful of people. Amy wrote about it here. Anyway, I had fun getting the house ready- blowing up air mattresses, cutting fresh fruit, laying out towels and dusting. We had a great time catching up and I enjoyed meeting one of her new band members. I love being to offer my washer/dryer and wireless to folks that have been on the road. We drank a beer, caught up on our lives and I grabbed my pajamas and toothbrush and headed to Tammy's to sleep. As I was putting on my pjs I realized that I had not brought clothes for the next work day. Luckily it was casual Friday and I didn't have any appointments. My jeans, black tank and flip flops were a little more casual than usual, but it all worked out.

The next group made me really nervous. Six people that had been on the road for ten days. Their gig didn't end until midnight and it was 1:00 by the time the van pulled in to my driveway. They were rocking out to something AC/DC-ish, singing along at the top of their lungs with the windows down. By the time I parked and ran up the driveway hissing, "turn down the music," neighbors lights were flipping on and I could see curtains parting. I gave the two guys that I've known for years a tour, reminding them about where the lights are, etc. I sniffed something through the window that sent me flying out the door, "could you please not smoke pot in the driveway, or the house for that matter." I felt like such a raving bitch by the time I walked out the door at 1:30. I was scheduled to give a talk at 6:45, which meant leaving Tammy's at 6:15. I was careful to remember to grab clothes this time.

I burst out laughing when I unloaded my bag in Tammy's spare room - I'd grabbed a freaking tablecloth instead of a skirt. I also forgot to bring shoes and I was wearing cowboy boots. I figured I could sneak in to Tammy's room (if I could get by the big dogs holding guard) and grab one of her skirts. As it mercifully turned out, the talk was cancelled. I had a 9:00 meeting that I went to wearing the jeans. I stopped by my house to grab a skirt and was greeting with sleeping bodies, pans of food on the stove and overflowing ashtrays on the front step. Ugggh.

From there I decided to have lunch in the neighborhood instead of at work. I had a lovely time sitting in the sunshine and visiting with neighbors. A woman that I volunteer with on a project accosted me and yelled at me about the project and how mad she was. I'll admit that I needed a little kick in the ass, but no one deserves to be yelled at in public. As you can guess, the already strained relationship is worse.

I've had such a tight schedule of meetings and talks and work that if one little thing goes wrong a catastrophic domino effect starts. One day last week meetings ran in to meetings that ran in to more meetings. At the last meeting I was taking a deep breath envisioning a hunkering down with a library book at home. My cell phone rang and I learned that I was late for work at the Red Key. I'd totally forgotten that I'd picked up a Wednesday night 7:30 cooking shift. I raced to the bar and cooked 30 burgers in my beautiful dry clean only dress. I did something I never do and drank a shift beer while cleaning the kitchen. Just as I was walking out the door my phone rang again. I'd forgotten to go see a friend's band play. I pulled up to the venue, still in my good dress, smelling like grease, smoke and sweat and burst in to tears as I was racing to the door.

Typically I revel in those sort of days, putting on my superchick cape on trying to do it all, be everything to everyone.

Lately I feel like I'm not doing anything quite right. Work, writing, part time jobs, friendship, blogging, homeownership, boys, family and volunteering are all off-kilter. Even my cat is giving me hell and my bike and car are rebelling. Thrown-up hairballs, flat tires and plugged fuel filters abound.

Tomorrow will be a better day....right?


Kirsten said...

Oh, Nora, I'm sorry about all of that. Every little moment of it. (Except the good stuff that fell in between.)

September makes me most-miss the regularity and rhythm of a school year. I miss that feeling of starting fresh, without the encumbrance of things not-quite-done catching up with you, as they do all the time in adulthood.

Maybe you should go buy some fresh pencils, a new notebook, and some new socks? Or whatever you might need to feel like you've go a fresh start moment happening.

nora said...

Thanks Kirsten,
The fact that I couldn't even get it together enough to RSVP for your lovely First Friday party is an indicator of my craziness. Thanks for hosting the convention watching party. I was feeling guilty that night because I owed someone in the room a phone call for a project that I'm working on that I've let fall through the cracks. Ugggh.

Granny Annie said...

Well Nora, it has been a while since you wrote a laughing, crying, exhausting post. Whew, I'm tired and think Sarah Palin would be too. LOL

Rachel said...

Nora, you busy woman. I don't know how you do it!! I am tired just reading about it all.

You are very brave to let all those band folks stay at your house. I hope they cleaned up after themselves.

I thought that you were going to say for casual Friday that you ended up wearing your PJ's!!

bad influence girl said...

In my book, you're doing a decidedly not half-assed job in the friendship department.

The world is a better place because of you, Miss Nora.

Cliff said...

Ask Dave out on a date. He likes you.
You should get yourself one of those fancy phones with a calendar on it.
Oh yeah, you have one.

I like the fact that the pez collection came back. Lucky for you.
I just gave the "you need to re-evaluate your activities and priorities in your life" speech to my daughter. If you'll give me a call I'll repeat it for you.
But on the other hand, If it wasn't just like you described, it wouldn't be Nora. You're a goodin.

Janell said...

I'm glad your Pez pony was rescued. I hate to see a good horse put down.... :)

I burst out laughing at the "dumbass stupidhead poopyperson" - can I quote you on that?

Tee said...

Wow - exhausted just reading that. You need another vacation already!

So glad your PEZ dispensers were saved!!

Gette said...

I hate weeks like that, but they do make me lose weight! Down a jeans size since school started. Who says stress is all bad.

Jamie Dawn said...

I'm worn out by just reading this post!
I cracked up about you grabbing a tablecloth instead of a skirt. I'd say you might be a teeeensy bit overworked.
I hope you have some free time to rest, relax, and catch your breath before having to dive back into your crazy schedule.

Teresa said...

I am glad that you got your PEZ dispensers back.

Hang in there, babydoll. I am thinking of you.