Saturday, December 25, 2010

Oh by golly...

Merry Christmas readers!

Christmas has changed a little since I was younger.  When my brother and I were little, it involved one of us sleeping on the floor in the other's room, whispering about what Santa may or may not be bringing for us in the morning.  Unbeknownst to us, in the next room, our parents (with my aunt's assistance some years) stayed up into the wee hours wrapping some leftover presents.  I found them once when they were ambitious and started early, hiding the presents underneath the bed.  They were addressed "To Jen, From Santa."

This is apparently because Santa dropped my presents off early so that Mommy and Daddy could wrap them.

Anyway, we'd then wake up early.  REALLY early. And proceed to jump on Mom and Dad like these kids:



And then we'd be off.  I'd wriggle around as my mom tried to tame my ridiculously long hair in either a bun or a French braid and I'd don a fancy dress.  We'd go to roughly three or four houses at which I'd eat... nothing.  My mom would bring a hot dog or pizza for me to eat at the last stop.  It was all I'd consent to eat.

Now we sleep in a little bit more, but we still hold to some of the traditions from when I was younger.  My grandma still gives me a Barbie Christmas tree ornament every year (I would guess that I have about 19-20 of them).  My mom still wraps my stocking (I insist on it).  They still wait 'til the last minute to wrap the gifts.  But now all the stops that we make come to us and we feast on Italian food.  This year it was sausage and peppers, baked ziti, antipasto, bread, and more.

Then we open the presents of and for the people who were not here on Christmas morning while we chit-chat/play with our new toys/gadgets. That part's the same from when I was younger too.

I hope your Christmas was as wonderful as mine!

And to all a good night...

Monday, December 20, 2010

Forget the Holly Jolly: Have a piney Christmas!

I've got a case of the Blah Humbugs this season.

Earlier this month, I'll confess that it was a full-blown Scrooge case of Bah Humbugs, but as the month has progressed, I've come to realize that I simply miss my family and want to be home with them.  The Holiday season doesn't give me the warm fuzzies when I'm three hours away.

Nevertheless, hanging out in a friend's apartment the other night, a few of us got involved in a discussion about pine cones.  Why are they Christmas ornaments?

Most of us could remember remember making some sort of ornament when younger out of pine cones, and the simplest explanation we could devise was that they are pine cones and come readily available from the famed Christmas tree.

But I was curious about exactly how long pine cones have been a part of this and where, exactly, they come into play

A long-ass time and a multitude of places, as it turns out.  But the traditions vary greatly.

For instance, in Italy, there is something called the presepio (translated: manger), which is where the focus goes on Christmas.  Who can blame them?  I know a baby Jesus would draw my attention too.  The presepio, like our trees for some people, are festooned with pine cones, among other things.

Or in Portugal, the Yule log burns on Christmas day.  The remains are saved to be burned with pine cones during thunderstorm season.  Portuguese superstition says that lightning will not strike where Yule log smoke has been.

The pine cones even have a root back in paganism, where the pine tree was worshipped alongside Dionysus, god of wine, and pine cones were used as a symbol of fertility.

And in 18th Century England, pine cones were placed in wreaths with holly, boxwood, bayberry, and fruits.

Here in the good old U.S. of A., settlers used to use pine cones alongside pine branches, holly, ivy, and mistletoe.  They actually neglected the pine tree in favor of these easier, readily available alternatives.  And did you know that pine cones are edible?  Apparently they're an excellent source of nutrition.  (And if you can't find a good old-fashioned orange, pine needles have Vitamin C!)



...Yum.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

MIA

Call the police.  I need to report a theft.

Because someone has stolen all of my shows.

I hate the TV off-season that comes from mid-December a little way into the new year.  I miss Meredith and Derek and their occasional dark and twisty love.  I miss Aly Michalka and Ashley Tisdale rekindling my old Disney Channel love on Hellcats and cheering their way into my heart.  I miss Blair and Chuck doing their usual dysfunctional thing in the Big Apple.  I miss crazy Susan on Desperate Housewives and unstable Gabrielle.  I really miss Darren Criss on Glee.

(Phew.  Admit it, you would (or do) miss him too.)
Hell on the really boring nights, I even miss the weirdness that is the Vampire Diaries (I promise: I watch out of desperation).

But all of this has lead me to the conclusion that I need to report a far more serious crime:

Alert the FBI.  My life has disappeared.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

And one more thing...

This new Yogi Bear movie?



Of course I was a fan of Yogi as a kid.  When I heard about the movie I was even a little excited.  But then I saw a preview.  It looks horrible.  The only reason that I'm still kiiiind of contemplating seeing it is the fact that Justin Timberlake is the voice of Boo Boo.  And I haven't outgrown my 'N Sync crush days.

And that's about all I have to say about that.

Monday, December 6, 2010

A Mind Divided

Here's a few things I can't make my mind up about at the moment:

1) This whole change your profile picture to be a cartoon character from your childhood thing.

Yes, I'm a little late on this, considering today is supposed to be the "last day."  Did I contemplate changing my profile picture to Sailor Moon?  Of course.  But that's mostly because a few of my friends picked a favorite cartoon and I wanted to jump on the bandwagon.  In the end, I decided not to share.  Because I'm 99% sure that the whole "ending violence against children" thing that it's supposed to accomplish isn't going to happen because I changed my Facebook Profile.



2) And speaking of Facebook, what do you guys think of the new Facebook Profile?  


I went ahead and changed mine because I've basically decided that while I am at first resistant to change in general, I tend to wind up liking all of the changes Facebook makes.  It's hard to believe that I was once wholly opposed to things like the News Feed and the instant feed.  Right now I'm viewing it as a little bit cluttered, but it'll grow on me.  It always does.

3) My future.

So what else is new?  A few of you may know that I worked for less than 3 weeks at an SEO Marketing company that I left just as quickly.  I think I would have learned a lot by staying, but the simple fact of it is that I need to make money and I don't think that I would have made it there in the long run.  So I got out.  I'm still working on my novel and I'm picking up more shifts at Logan's, but I'm not making much money.  I have upcoming trips in February and March and I don't see myself getting hired at a real job by telling people that.  If I don't figure life out soon, I'm officially subscribing to the boomerang generation theory, moving home, and putting off real adulthood until I can afford to support myself somehow.  Mom is thrilled.


4) Jillian Michaels.

This is mostly because I've started doing one of her videos with a friend.  (By the way, OnDemand Exercise is a godsend).  This woman is kicking my butt.  I am sore in places I forgot I had.  But if she gets me the body I want, then I'll settle for loving to hate her.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Do You See What I See?



That's right.  A moving truck.

In my neighbor's driveway.

Can I get an amen?

You've heard the expression 'I will dance on their grave?"

I won't take it to quite that extreme.

But when they're gone I may dance in their driveway.

And if this is just some sort of moving stuff to storage thing, I may cry.  If it's what I hope and pray it is, I will not be at all sorry to see them go.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Shake, Rattle, and Roll

So for the past week or so, I've had a pretty horrible cold.  I hack, I cough, I sneeze.  And I lost my voice for a couple of days.  Oh and I've also had conflicting other problems.  As a result, I've taken so many pills in the past 24 hours that I'm pretty sure if you shook me right now, I'd rattle.

Among these, I've taken:

Vitamin C. 

For obvious reasons.  Vitamin C, according to mayoclinic.com "is a water-soluble vitamin that maintains skin integrity, helps heal wounds and is important in immune functions. It also has antioxidant properties, helping to prevent cell damage by neutralizing free radicals, molecules believed to be associated with aging and certain diseases."  So, per my family's nutritionist's instructions, I've popped a ton of it.




Zinc.


According to a report in the Journal of Infectious diseases, Zinc is scientifically proven to reduce the time of the common cold.








Melatonin.


A sleep aid that I swear by.  I have trouble sleeping on the best of nights, but on nights when I feel about equivalent to fecal matter (that was me making an effort not to use foul language), this stuff is a godsend.






Dayquil.


To mask my cold symptoms so that I can function like a basic human being.








Acetaminophen.


For everything else that's wrong with me and not related not my effing cold.  Bleh.








I've also been drinking Emergen-C and Zipfizz for the Vitamins inherent in them.  Here's hoping I kick this thing soon!

(PS.  Yes, Mom, I spaced all these supplements out appropriately so that I was safe.  Don't worry)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Write or... Else.

I am an obnoxious NaNo-er.  I'm aware that an annoying amount of my tweets and blog posts since November has started have been about my novel.

If you're annoyed, avert your eyes because here I go again.

I hit the halfway mark last night.  A day behind schedule, but hopefully I'll manage to get caught up again tonight.  And I owe it all to Write or Die.


Write or Die is an internet-based program (or if you prefer, you can download the desktop version for an measly $10) that basically focuses on Writing and nothing else.  To put it simply... write, or there will be consequences.  In Gentle mode, you are prodded by a pop-up box when you stop writing.  In Kamikaze mode, which I have not been brave enough to use, the program will delete your words if you stop writing.

I have generally been sticking with Normal mode.  This means that I stop writing, a horrible sound starts that only stops when I start writing again.

So far I have been subject to obnoxious buzzing, babies crying, and "Never Gonna Give You Up."

I wonder what torture I'll endure today?

Friday, November 12, 2010

There's a special spot in hell for people like them.

I don't believe I ever gave you an update on our shitty neighbors.

The last action we'd taken was letting our landlord know about the basic harassment that they were performing.  He, in turn, told his lawyer, who drafted a letter basically telling them what we already knew. That we were legally allowed to park on the curb in the cul-de-sac as long as we didn't block anyone's driveway, so to leave us alone.

So now they don't park their only car in their own driveway.  They park it in front of the curb so that we can't.

Assholes.

And NOW they've taken to using a freaking saw when I'm trying to get WORK done.

Hate them.  Hate, hate, hate them.

Monday, November 8, 2010

A Toast to Toasts

Some of my friends and I took a break this weekend and stayed at a hotel on the beach.  I don't need to tell you that drinking was involved.

Watermelon Margarita to kick off the night (delish, by the way)
But among the drinking was a variety of toasting.  Among them were:

"To good times with good friends.  Because I love each and every single one of you. To good friends."

"To doing this again.  To being right back here in three years when we've all grown up."

"To college friends and beyond."

"To expecting a night of the unexpected."

"To the breezes that blow through the treeses..." (You know how this one ends)

So I'd like to take this opportunity to make a toast to toasts.

Here's to toasts.  To the ones that make us giggle.  To the classics.  To the hope for the future and the unknown.  To an excuse to clink glasses and take a drink.  To grinning from ear to ear while tapping your fork against a glass in a crowded restaurant.  To giving us those warm fuzzy feelings towards friends and people that we love to hang out with. To knowing that everyone is having a good time.  Here's to you, toasts.
*Clink*

Thursday, November 4, 2010

A Valuable Lesson

I like where I work.  I really do.

But on Halloween, we offered a Buy One Meal, Get A Meal Free deal.  And so the hoards descended upon us.

Needless to say, I met the end of my shift at four o'clock with a great deal of relief.  I was tired, cranky and wanted nothing more than for people to get out of my restaurant's lobby, where we'd been on a wait since 11:30 A.M.  Or I wanted out of it myself.  But we were low on silverware.  Super low.  And no one left working had any time to roll more.

So I rolled silverware after my shift was supposed to be over for three hours.  I didn't have a chair.  I had a horrible backache from hunching over for three hours.  But I was looking forward to the free dinner that they had promised me and my roommates in exchange for it.

I just got back from that.  I ordered a Pick Three appetizer.  The other three ordered Steak Combos.

I don't think they'll offer me and my friends a free dinner again.

But we did them a service I think.

Don't offer young, poor people free food without some kind of stipulation.

We'll take it and run.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

This is harder than I thought it'd be...

I've been consumed in my writing for NaNoWriMo since... well... the second the clock struck midnight on Monday.  I've been obsessed with my sucky-ass first draft that I am trying my best to convince myself will improve when I finish it and revise it later.  Like Ernest Hemingway said, "The first draft of anything is shit."

So this is what my past three days have looked like:

10 A.M.: Wake up.  Don my fuzzy blue robe and slippers.  Stare in vexation at my open Word document.  Wonder how almost nothing I planned in my outline has happened.

10:15.:  Tell myself to write something.  Write anything.  


10:17:  Amend this last thought after a particularly awful sentence. Don't write that.


10: 20: Take 4 hours to dash out a thousand words.

2:20: Get antsy.  Tell myself that I cannot get up from the computer until I write at least 200 more words.

2:25: Zone out.  Catch myself wandering out of my room and mutter a scold to myself like a crazy person

2:30: Take a deep breath and sprint out 300 words.  Fight the urge to scream as I realize my male main character is not what I wanted him to be and try to just go with who he's turning out to be.

3:30: Let myself get distracted by random writing contests and author interviews.

4:00: Get ready for work almost gratefully.

9:00: Get home.  Eat.  Do what I feel like for a while.  Change into the pajama pants that I've started thinking of as my "writing uniform."

10:00: Resign myself to settling in for a long night of writing more crap.  Like now.  Time to take the plunge.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

NaNoWriMo 2010!

Well, I've put off this post until it was somewhat relative, but now NaNoWriMo is less than 2 days away, so here it is.  I'm a:


Those of you who write may have heard of it.  Those of you who listen to me babble may have heard of it (unless you've tuned me out).  And those you who follow me on Twitter may have seen me tweeting up a storm about it.

So what the hell is NaNoWriMo?

It's National Novel Writing Month.  Participants, from November 1st to November 30th, endeavor to write a novel that's at least 50,000 words long.  The idea is to turn off your inner editor and focus on quantity rather than quality.  Quality can be fixed later, but quantity has to get out there.  You can outline your brains out, but no actual writing until November 1st.

So, hopefully by the end of the month I'll have my crappy novel completed.  Winners (as in anyone who signs up and reaches the 50,000 word mark) get a free proof copy in book form, courtesy of Createspace, one of the sponsors of NaNoWriMo.

I'm prepared.  I've read the creator's guide to NaNo: "No Plot, No Problem," I've outlined way more that I ever have, read everything about the contest that I can, enlisted a NaNo mentor, have someone designing my cover, I'm downloading either Scrivener or Storyist as soon as the clock strikes November 1st, and have decided that my survival kit will largely consist of ZipFizz, hummus, Veggie sticks, and a pen and notebook.  Oh and my computer and internet.  Duh.

Wish me luck!  And if you're participating, add me as a writing buddy:  http://www.nanowrimo.org/eng/user/657188

Thursday, October 28, 2010

You Are What You Read

So, Scholastic launched a social networking site today called "You Are What You Read" as part of their "Read Every Day, Lead a Better Life" campaign.  The idea behind the site is that users will connect based upon the five books that shaped their lives the most.

The little nerd in me that used to stay up past my bedtime to read under the covers with a flashlight is squealing with delight at the idea.  Especially after seeing that Taylor Swift and (eek!) Daniel Radcliffe (who, yes, lists "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone" among the most influential books in his life, thankyouverymuch) have created profiles.

Then I remembered that most of my friends don't like to read for fun and that the books that I'll probably wind up picking are hardly going to make me look like the English major I was.

But of course I'll be creating a profile anyway.

Was there any doubt?

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Garage Sale Finds

There are very few occasions that I will drag my lazy butt out of bed and out of the house in the wee hours of the morning.  I imagine that will change someday when I finally find a job and am paid to drag my butt somewhere that early.

But, for now, among these few occasions that I rouse myself from slumber that early, a few are garage sales.

I was dragged to garage sales every Saturday morning, without fail, as a child.  Mom would wake me and my brother up and among a great deal of grumbling and whining about wanting to stay in bed and not wanting to go, we'd be piled in the car, where we'd very likely sit and wait petulantly as she browsed the selections of various yards and garages.

I was too young to appreciate the thrill of the bargain hunt.

Now, however, things have changed.  Oh, I'm not saying I can always talk myself into getting out of bed for the sales, but I can appreciate them every now and then.  When I'm walking away with new books and an assortment of other things for under $10, it's hard not to.

But more importantly, I've learned to appreciate some of the crazy things that people try to sell or give away.

In the market for a pet?  I'm sure the people of this fine, reputable home of the spray-paint and plywood flier can assist you, gratis.

Everything BUT the kitchen sink?  Pah.  Amateurs.  Now, THESE folks  know how to turn a profit!

Give Bambi's Dad a home for only $20!  Come on, how can you resist those big, brown eyes?

Monday, October 18, 2010

Notice

Hey followers,

Posts'll probably MIA this week.  My grandfather passed away this morning, so the fam's got some difficulties going on and I probably won't have the emotional capacity for bloggy-blog time.

I'll be back soon.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

I'll make the joke just once: "RUUUUN, Jen-nay, Ruuuuun!"

I am not a runner.

I don't mind exercising, but I'll probably never like it.  I generally stick to riding my biking, riding a stationary bike, playing on the swings, or doing the elliptical for a while.  Maybe toss some crunches and lunges in there for good measure.

But I.  Do not.  Run.

So why have I been doing it every day?

Because somehow a good friend of mine (who used to profess that she "didn't believe in running") has convinced me to attempt to run in not one, but two different races.

These runs could not be more different.

The first one takes place on January 29, 2011.  It is called the Warrior Dash.  The course is 3.02 miles long, but this is no mere run.

There are 12 different obstacles.  You are expected to sludge through Alligator Alley, crawl under barbed wire, tire hop, and more.  There is one water station half-way through.  If, at the end, you have survived, you are gifted with a free beer, a fuzzy warrior helmet, a T-shirt, a medal, a race bib, water, bananas, and granola.

And then you get to participate in drinking, feasting, and revelry.



At the other end of the spectrum, we have the Disney Princess 1/2 Marathon on February 27, 2011.

This course is 13.1 miles (GAH) and is all about celebrating your inner princess.  Y'know... while you sweat like a pig.  Oh.  Excuse me.  Princesses glisten.  While you glisten like a pig.

The big draw of this one?  It's Disney.  You start and finish the half-marathon at Epcot, you run through Cinderella's Castle, and you keep a 16-minute mile pace while either running or walking.

You get a medal at the end, and (in my opinion), major bragging rights.

So, will I make it to the end of either of these races?  I guess only time will tell!  If anyone has any training advice, by the way, it's more than welcome.

Check them both out for yourself:  Warrior Dash 2011 and Disney's Princess 1/2 Marathon Weekend 2011

Monday, October 11, 2010

The Laws of the Lane

Has this ever happened to you?

You run into Wal-mart for something small.  Something minor.  Like... oh, I don't know, let's say bread.  You didn't use yours to make a grilled cheese sandwich like you meant to and now that you're finally ready for one, you don't have any bread that's not expired.

Unfortunate.

BUT once in Wal-mart, you locate your loaf of bread.  You stride to the check-out area, but for some reason the entire world has decided to fully restock their pantries, refrigerator and freezer.  Have you ever seen carts quite this full?  As they unload it onto the register's conveyor belt, organizing it (frozen foods, cans, cold stuff, boxes) as they go, you're not too sure.

But wait! There. 3 registers away, there is a self check-out. There's only one other person there compared to the 5 or 6 people in other lanes.

You join that line feeling triumphant. You'll be out of here wayyyyy sooner than everyone else in these lines.

Or so you thought. Because the person in front of you is violating every single unspoken self check-out rule that has ever been.

1) You watch, aghast, as they first violate the cardinal rule of the self check-out: treat it as an express lane. They scan item after item with sloth-like speed. How many things do they have in their cart?  Sweet Jesus.  One, two, ten... THIRTY! There are thirty things in that cart.  In the self check-out line. Sacrilege.

2) Oh, but it doesn't stop there. They've toted their produce along for the ride.  Do not bring produce to the self check-out.  I guarantee you that if you have to look up a "popular item" that you have to weigh, another customer is standing behind you wanting to... well, cut you.  And if you're buying more than one? May God have mercy on your soul.

3) You watch, trying to appear nonchalant despite mounting frustration, as they frown at the screen and flag the woman who monitors the self check-outs down. They did not just ask for a price check in the self check-out.  This isn't a speed bump in the process, it's a freaking roadblock requiring a detour.

4) OH MY GOD, ARE THEY ACTUALLY WHIPPING OUT COUPONS?! YOU NEVER BRING COUPONS TO A SELF CHECK-OUT! There are some things that are just plain inconsiderate.

5) The saga is ending.  They hit the button to get to the payment stage.  You cheer internally.  Okay.  Stay cool.  All that's left is for them to swipe their credit-- why are they counting out dollar bills? The self check-out lane should be for electronic purchases only.  Because we all know what's coming next.  That cash isn't going to be acceptably crisp.  Aaaaand yep.  There they go.  The machine denies the bills, they painstakingingly rub them on the counter's edge, and they add around 5 or 10 minutes to this already excruciatingly long process.
    Unfortunately, it's happened to all of us.  But hopefully you'll make the effort not to violate the laws of the lane again.

    Thursday, October 7, 2010

    Need a laugh?

    My friends and I killed a good half-hour watching this kid lip-sync to different songs. This one was my favorite. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did... a lot of laughter ensued.



    Here a link to the whole channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/QueenChristy. Countless videos of this kid lip-syncing to your favorite songs (I also particularly enjoyed "Telephone" and "Teenage Dream") and singing some.  I don't recommend the singing ones.  They're not really funny... just sad.

    Win or lose... we still-- well, you know.

    As a student at UCF, I attended my fair share of college football games.

    I'm not sure if you're familiar with our fine football program.

    But if you're not... well, half the time, we're rather abysmal.  I'm talking blow-out games, embarrassing season records, and fans so angry that they threw turkey legs onto the field.  This is after the golden days of Kevin Smith, of course.

    In a Sports Illustrated survey, we were named the rudest fans in Conference USA.  It's pretty easy to believe, and it's gotten worse since the days when I was a freshman and we didn't even have an on-campus stadium.  During tailgates, it's routine for fans to get so drunk that they can't make it to the game, spill drinks, and lose property.  I typically remain sober during these tailgates and serve as a sober driver, therapist, argument mediator, baby-sitter, and photographer, very often wrapped all into one.  Drinks are stolen, people pass out in the grass, and fans of our opposing school are harassed.

    This is not to say that we don't have the fans that actually enjoy the game itself, despite our "teetering fan base."  In fact, one game, a friend (you know who you are) was taken to my car by the paramedics because she could not walk on her own.  I took her to get some food (and water) in her, then took her home, where I thought she'd sleep it off for the rest of the day.

    She hassled me mercilessly.  She "just loves football.  Football is [her] passion.  It's all [she] look[s] forward to all year, is football.  Please, please, please, please..."

    She made it to the game.

    This is not me.  I would never care that much.  As an alumni, I am tired of pretending.  So, hear it is:

    I don't give a rat's ass about football.

    I know that once in the stadium, the excitement can be contagious, but more often than not I'm bored to tears, watching our team lose again (yes, yes, I know we won yesterday. Whoop-dee-do).  And I don't care whose fault it is, I'm not going to start chanting "Fire O'Leary" in the stands, much less make shirts with the message.  I have tailgated at all three home games this year (soberly, so, it might not count to some people), but I haven't made it to a single game.

    Because the thing is... football's not what I'm there for.  I'm there to see my friends.  Sometimes, rarely, I'm there for a drink. I'm there to wear black and gold attire, enjoy the varying types of weather, and pose for pictures.

    And that's ok with me.  Because we may not win 'em all... but we've never lost a tailgate.

    Tuesday, October 5, 2010

    And the hits just keep on coming

    And now I have literally just received an e-mail addressed "Dear (Applicant's name here)" from Eagle Eye Advertising (also listed on www.ripoffreport.com).


    Seriously, what is wrong with these people?

    Rip-off Report!

    I was supposed to have an interview today.

    I had even allowed myself to become cautiously optimistic yesterday when scheduling it.  After receiving an e-mail from a man named Barry, I received a phone call from a woman named Carol. She seemed nice and answered all of my questions. When I told her, quite politely, that I've run into a few businesses that advertise their positions as marketing ones, only to have you go door-to-door in an attempt to sell their product, and quite frankly that's just not something I'm interested in.

    She assured me that that was not the case with their company, so I hesitantly agreed to schedule an interview after getting a website address and physical address.

    I would have gone to the interview.  I couldn't find a whiff of wrongdoing or scamminess about the company (called A. Events) online. Sure, the website for a glass company didn't seem to match the claim of being a marketing company, but I was going to give them benefit of the doubt and show up.  Perhaps A Events was just what Pinkerton Glass has dubbed their Marketing Department.

    But then, while at the gym, I got an e-mail from a woman named Alexandra, for a different company, with the exact same address, right down to the number.  I barely had time to furrow my brow in confusion at my phone, when it was ringing.  Huh.  Same number as "Carol." I let it go to voicemail, and then listened to the message.

    "Hi Jennifer, this is Lynn with Prospect Advertising.  Blah, blah blah,  looked at your resume.  Blah blah blah, would like to schedule interview."

    A millisecond later, I receive another e-mail, and it is at this point that I actually notice that all of the addresses are only Gmail accounts (which... y'know, could be legit, but now is just another point to add to the list).  This e-mail is from "Megan," saying that she tried to reach me by phone.

    Well, now I Google "Prospect Advertising" and check them out on www.ripoffreport.com.  Oh.  There they are! And, in fact, they are a door-to-door company.  Apparently they have you walk around neighborhoods and check for chips in car windshields, and then you proceed. I guess "A. Events" is their new cover name to escape the stigma of Prospect Advertising-- located, by the way at 400 E. Semoran Blvd, Suite 202, in Casselberry.

    So now I'm annoyed that they almost managed to waste a portion of my time.  But I've got a limited mount of power... so I'm blogging about them. And filing my own Rip-off Report.

    Oh, and I gathered all of the e-mail addresses I had for them and addressed an e-mail thusly:

    Subj: A Events and Prospect Advertising


    Dear Barry, Carol, Alexandra, Lynn, and Megan,

    Thank you for your interest in me and my resume, however upon further research and reflection, I do not believe that I am a good fit for your company, companies, or whatever the case may be located at 400 E. Semoran Blvd, Suite 202, Casselberry, Florida.  I will not be attending the previously arranged interview tomorrow at 1:30 PM and have no further interest.

    Cordially,
    Jennifer Baggiero

    Monday, October 4, 2010

    Heyyy, where da party at?

    Remember the days of attending a child's birthday party or similar function?  You'd search for balloons attached to a mailbox, as good as a herald, crying out "Here.  HERE!  THE PARTY IS HEEEEEEERE!"

    Such subtlety is so 90s.

    No.  If you want to tell everyone where your event is, say it loud and say it proud.

    www.flamingosurprise.com offers an invaluable service wherein, somewhere between the hours of midnight and six o'clock A.M., they will flock (pardon the pun) to your yard and festoon it with signs ranging from flamingos, to race cars, to scales of justice.


    Surprise your friends! Make your party awesome! Get revenge on your shitty neighbors!

    ...But only if you live in the Chicago area.

    There goes that last idea.

    Saturday, October 2, 2010

    Job-hunting sucks

    So this little in-between phase I've found myself in?

    Well, it royally sucks.

    I like hostessing, to my surprise.  The people I work with are friendly and sometimes I even have fun while at work.  But it's not a career. And I work part-time, so it's barely enough to cover my utility bills.

    After my freak-out the other day, I edited my resume. It's still not exciting, but I've been sending it out because it's what I've got.  I'm all up in Career Builder, Monster, and ummm... Craigslist.



    Browsing the listings for entry level jobs that I may or may not be qualified for is... well, it's slim-pickings, but I need a big girl job. I love my Mom and Dad and I'm grateful that they're helping me out still, but I'm tired of relying on them. I feel faintly pathetic for not supporting myself yet.  Unfortunately, I'm 99% sure that these entry-level "Marketing" jobs that I'm sending in a resume for are those glorified scams involving "promote these nightclubs and if enough people come out, maybe we'll pay you some commission."

    Here's hoping I can find the needle in the haystack.  The diamond in the rough.

    Hell, the legitimate full-time job in a sea of crappy part time ones.

    Friday, October 1, 2010

    I'm a .net!

    So I finally manned (womanned?) up and bought a domain name for my lovely little corner of the web here.  Welcome to www.almostgrownup.net!

    I'm pretty excited about it, even though it's a small step.

    Baby steps lead to grown-up steps, right?

    I wish I liked...

    There are a lot of things that I really, really want to like.

    Unfortunately, I am a finicky eater and drinker, and thus do not like a great deal of things.   But topping my list of things I want to like are:

    1) Wine.  It's that whole classy, cultured atmosphere, y'know?  There's something that makes me feel so grown-up when I have a wineglass held in one sophisticated hand.  Unfortunately I've taken to filling it with Diet Pepsi.




    2.  Coffee.  I cannot abide the strong flavor of it, but want the caffeine fix it offers so badly.  I settle for a Diet Sunkist or some other soda option most mornings in order to get going.  But, I'm 99% sure that Coffee is the grown-ups drink of choice










    Meet Larry the Lettuceman.
    Actual photo.
    Yes. His clothes are ALSO
    stuffed with lettuce.
    3. Vegetables.  Aren't adults supposed to like these things?  I'm supposed to be over recoiling in fear from a bouquet of broccoli or a head of lettuce... or the lettuce man my friends hid in my bathroom on my 21st birthday to terrorize me.  (True story. Maybe I'll tell you sometime.)









    4.  Finally, I wish I liked beer.  It kind of goes the opposite way of the other things on my list.  It's not particularly adult, or classy in any way.  But you know what?  It's cheap.  In fact, it's usually free for me.  But since I can't stomach it, I usually wind up paying for my own drinks.
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