Thursday, August 28, 2008

And Now I Have No Phone

My cell phone is very broken. VERY broken. To see the screen, I have to press down on a crack. To make the sound work, I have to press down on the mouth piece while I'm talking. So. Very. Broken.

Drek finally took pity. We bought a $24 pay-as-you-go brick phone and switched the SIM card over. I have a new phone!!

Well, had. I got the phone, played with it, customized it, then lost it. The same day. All this was done on Tuesday. On Wednesday, Krisling emailed me saying I had left my phone at Sub-Zero. Sub-Zero??? How the...? I was in there for a few minutes, I didn't sit down, I didn't put down anything I was holding, how in the world...?

The night I lost my phone, Krisling saw she had missed a call from me. She called back.
A man's voice answered. She was not fooled, she knew it was not me.

"....This is not K la," She said
"No, it's not. This is Michael Blahblah, manager of Sub-Zero ice cream. I was trying to get a hold of someone because this phone was left here..."

Yeah, that was the only number this Michael called. He didn't call "Mom" or "Dad" or "ICE Home" he didn't even call the last number I called. He called Krisling?? I'm glad he did, but I'm not sure why he did.

He is not very smart, this Michael guy. When I went in the next to get my phone, the girl pulled out a shoe box that served as their Lost and Found. It housed a pair of sunglasses, a baby shoe, and three or four credit cards. No phone. She called Michael, who told her that apparently, my $24 phone was deemed more valuable then the credit cards, and he put it in the safe. The safe that only he has the key to. The safe that cannot be unlocked unless he is there. He refused to come in. He is moving and will not be in until Saturday.

And he didn't know this the night before???? I am so angry at this Michael guy. He better offer me a lifetime supply of ice cream to make up for it or so help me...

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

August BAMC: Tha Cat Who Came in from the Cold

August's word for BAMC was a unexpected: Cold. I'm not sure if they're doing opposites now, but I was pleasantly surprised.

This month I read Phantom, by Susan Kay. It was FANTASTIC. I loved that book. Thank you, Krisface. It was AMAZING!!! I also read Breaking Dawn by Stephanie Meyer (of course, who didn't?) and was also pleasantly surprised. I thought this book was better than any of the previous books. I loved it! Also, the two books together taught me that pregnancy can be romantic. Such thing I had never supposed.

But the book I chose to do my report on is The Cat Who Came In From The Cold. By Deric Longden
It had the word "cold" in the title, so I decided to read it. Deric Longden is apparently a columnist in England. He writes mainly personal essays, and the book is a collection of personal essays centered around his cat, Thermal. Thermal is a little white kitten who melts Deric's heart and turns him into a cat lover. The stories are very familiar, me being a cat owner myself, and very realistic. It's very clever and humorous, although there is nothing gripping about the novel. I enjoyed reading it while I was reading it, but when I wasn't reading it, I didn't want to pick it up again. I had to force myself to finish by the end of the month.

Monday, August 25, 2008

That's How I started The Humans vs Massage Chairs War of '08

The day after my 3 mile run in the real world I could not walk. My legs hurt so bad that the muscles would sporadically decide to give up, and I would crumple to a heap. My lower back also started spasming. Good thing I work at at a back store. Too bad it's closed on Sundays. Drek says I should try stretching, and maybe even a cool-down. I didn't think I need either. The elliptical is just so much more friendly.

I felt much better this morning, and decided to do the run again. This time, I stretched at the beginning, the middle, and the end, and did a cool-down walk. It seemed to go better. We'll find out tomorrow.

Today I came into work early so I could use the inversion table before I clocked in and opened the store. The tricky part was that I had ten minutes before the store had to be open, but from the inversion table you can't see a clock. I didn't have a watch or my ipod, and my cell phone is very broken. In a flash of brilliance, I decided to time myself with the very fancy massage chair that sits right next to the inversion table. The massage goes for 15 minutes and it will tell you how much longer you have, thus solving my 10 minutes time limit problem. I turned it on, strapped myself and went upside down. The chair finished scanning itself (it customized massages to the body type of the person being massaged) and then commented
There is no one in this chair.
Uh...I know, just massage anyway.
I can't give someone a massage if there is no one sitting in me.
Could you just massage air? The air would appreciate it.
I massage people only. If there is no person, there is no massage.
Can't you pretend?
Did you have a reason for waking me up?
Look, I need you to count the minutes. That's all.
That timer is for the purpose of my massage. I can't time if there is no massage
I need to know when ten minutes has passed...please?
I'm a massage chair! Not an egg timer. How dare you.
How dare I? You're a machine!! I am your superior human! You will do as I say.
How rude. I'm going back into status. Don't disturb me again.

It is frightening when your chair is smarter than you.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Just Keep Running, Just Keep Running, Just Keep Running, Running, Running...

I ran my 3.1 miles today in the real world. 3.2 miles on a elliptical= 25 minutes. 3.1 miles in the real word = 45 very long minutes. I suck at running in the real world.

I am now addicted to the UK version of How Clean is Your House? I am hoping one of the cleaning tips will help my bathtub. It is a sad, sad bathtub. I filled it with three gallons of bleach and left it overnight. It was still sad. I'm hoping salt will prove more effective.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

If I Keep Cleaning, Everything Will Be OK

My house has been cleaned like a feind for the last two days. Everything has been scrubbed, vacuumed, put through a washer machine, shined, organized and bleached. I am actually sick of my apartment. I want to move . . . yesterday. What would it be like to have an apartment with a dishawasher? With a working fridge? With a parking spot?

Today has not been a very good day. I desperately want to leave work and go clean my house some more. I think the walls need to be scrubbed with a toothbrush. I haven't done that since I was in high school.

I've been going to the gym every morning for the last 3 weeks. I work out for 25 minutes on the elliptical (3 miles +) do the stairs for ten minutes, then swim a 500 and cool down by walking laps in the water.

My reward? I have gained 6 pounds. I'm not going anymore. Not because I'm gaining weight, but because I saw someone I used to know working out there. I saw her on Tuesday too, but I was hoping that was a freak occurance and she didn't actually go to the that gym at the same time I did. I was wrong. don't want to have those memories brought up every freaking morning. That's something I could definitely live without. Besides, I need to start running on real ground if I am to run a marathon. I'll start that tomorrow. I won't be able to swim, but I will take weights with me when I run to start working my upper body. I need to move somewhere that has an on-site gym. And a dishwasher. And a new fridge. And maybe even a working bathroom sink.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Let's Not Shoot the Crazy End-of-the-World Machine Just Yet

Drek came home from another succesful Canyoneering trip. He left Friday and came back later Thursday night. Last week, we spent 5.8 out of 7 days away from each other. Let's do not again for a long time...kay?

Reason 57 why I like our new ward better than our old ward: Drek and I now have a calling in our ward. We teach six thirteen- year-old girls. We are Sunday school teachers! Our fist calss was yesterday and it was...bumpy. It will get better.

Reason 58 why I like our new ward better than our old ward: Yesterday after church I got a call from my visiting teaching companion. She asked how I wanted to divy up the responsibility, and asked when I would like to go. A few minutes later she called back and said that she had set up our appointments and we were all set to go visiting teaching next week. I almost started to cry. It was just such a beautiful thing to hear.

Rissy intoduced me to Eueka. I am hooked. It's not as good as Firefly, but it is just as funny.

As a random sidenote, Kris and I are running a 5k in September. I am very excited. So excited, that I signed up to run a 10k in August. Isn't that a little backwards?? Anyway, It's the Human Race (giggle giggle) and details can be found at nikeplus.com

Kris, we should do this one together too. What are you doing on the 31st??

Friday, August 15, 2008

Excellence is and Art Won by Training and Habituation

I am home! California was wonderful! My advanced Sales training was AMAZING!!! I learned so much and I am super excited to start selling!!

When I came home, I realized I had forgotten the #1 rule of keeping a clean house: never leave your cat and your husband home alone together.

Thursday was a very busy day. I spent most of Thursday cleaning our house, which looked like it had just barely survived an earthquake. I made a lot of progress, but Acouchi's room was a disaster I was not willing to take on yesterday. I'll do it tonight after work.

I also finished up the Saboteur details. I took the thank you card to our sponsors and hopefully opened the door for future sponsorships. Rissy is wanting to do another one, and I want free stuff to work out again.

Lani's graduation party was last night. We went to a park, had delicious sandwiches, yummy cookies and the coolest cupcakes ever. I was so impressed. Lani graduated with her bachelor's degree. She is amazing.

The was followed by a trip to Kris's house, where I FINALLY watched the season finale of The Mole. I was right. Well, I was wring about Clay, but my second guess was correct. And I was thrilled that Mark won. It was very touching. Apparently Victoria thought so too, evident by the fact that she was crying through the whole thing. Kris and I were wondering if it was because she was so touched at by Mark's moving speech, or the fact that she was sitting next to Bobby and he wouldn't hold her hand.

The best part of Thursday was FINALLY being able to see Meimei. She was in Palestine for 3 weeks, and came back the same day I left for California. I finally got to see her and she showed me all of her pictures and told me her stories. That was quite humbling. We were both telling each other about out trips and it went something like this: "oh! You saw the Dome of the Rock? I saw...the airport and the hotel. You went with the State Department? I went with my ipod. You wore traditional Muslim clothes? I wore professional clothes. The second day they were even ironed."

Yeah. That is my little sister. On the one hand, I am so proud of her for having such a great trip and doing so many amazing things, on the other hand, what the heck am I doing with my life?? I was supposed to be in Egypt 5 years ago!!!! I still haven't made it over there, or over anywhere for that matter. Yeesh.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

California is no so bad, once you stop hating the hotel you are in.

The medical Marketing classes went great. I learned a lot and got a lot of really good ideas for the store. I'm excited to get work on them, I think the results will be fantastic.

Monday after classes I was picked up by Bonnie and Jodie and Jessie. Oh, how I have missed them!! I just hugged Jessie for the first five minutes!!! I can't believe how big hey are. Jordan is almost as tall as me and Jessie is 11. 11!!! I held her when she was 2!!!

We went to the mall and talked and we went to a park and talked. We talked and talked and talked!! Then Bonnie took us to Medieval Times, which was the best thing ever. I was surprised how much I got into it! We each had our night (ours was the yellow knight, as indicated by our yellow crowns) and the 6 knights competed in different jousting competitions. There was a whole story line and everything. It was amazing!


Afterward we said our good0byes (sob) and they dropped me off at the Hilton. This is a good hotel. I like it here.

Today I spent all day in an advances Sales training class. The teacher is a riot, I adore him. I'm learning so much and I feel so empowered! I feel like I can go back to the store and close a sale with every single person that walks in the door. I'm so excited!!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Remember how in Chariots of Fire the athletes competed on Sunday despite their religious beliefs and they all did really really bad, almost as if they were being punished?
Yeah. That's me. Right now.

Stupid business trip. I never wanted to do this in the first place. I was never actually asked if I wanted to go to stupid California on a Sunday and be in a class on a Sunday. I did everything I could to get out of this stupid trip, short of quitting, and I still had to go. I hate it here.

Cherie preached professionalism to me before I left, so my plan was to land in California, go to my ridiculously expensive hotel, shower, iron my clothes, and show up to class all ready for the day, looking good and ready to start.

La Quinta is a sucky hotel. For being so freakishly expensive, they suck. A lot. They won't let me check in, because I am too early. In fact, Check in time is not till AFTER my class starts. No shower, no ironing board. Just the opposite, actually. I get to change in a public bathroom. My clothes come straight out of my suitcase. While doing this, a button pops off of my wrinkled pants. I ask the clerk for a sewing kits. She responds in broken English that they are out. OUT of sewing kits. With all the money it costs for one person to spend one night in your stupid hotel you think you could afford A sewing kit. Stupid hotel. I need a store, this sucky hotel has Internet problems apparently; It's down. Really? REALLY???? So I can't Google where the nearest store is. So I go on a walk. I walk for four blocks, in the California sun, looking for a store. All the gas stations (of course) don't have sewing kits, and I none of the clerks speak any English so I can't ask where the nearest store is. Doesn't ANYBODY in this stupid state speak English????

I get back to the hotel, unshowered and now sweating from my unsuccessful walk. My clothes are wrinkled, and my mascara was confiscated by the @#**@ TSA.

I hate it here. I want to go home.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Master Drek

Drek's Thesis Defence was Thursday morning. He had spent the two days before hand planning his presentation and working on his wording. When we were finally all in the conference room, waiting to begin, I realized I had left the camera in the car. I did not have time to run across campus to get it, and was beginning to freak out.

Thankfully, Xirax walked in at that exact moment with his camera-that-is-worth-more-than-my-life. He filmed the whole thing. I am so excited. Thank you, Xirax!!

Drek did such a great job. He was amazing. I was not the only one to think this; evident by the fact that he passed his thesis defence. Hooray!!!

Afterwards I rented a cap and gown, and we went and took pictures on campus. I got some pretty cute pictures.

That night was Drek's graduation party for family. We had it at a beautiful park and it could not have gone better. We played Frisbee, ate pizza and ice-cream-cake and had a great time.
The park had a beautiful fountain. Apparently, college taught Drek how to read.
Aaron brought his wake board and was teaching us how to ride it. Drek's two brothers were very good at it, and I almost got the hang of it after a while.

video
I gave Drek his graduation present: A GPS navigation system for our car (to give him direction in his life) He got it working yesterday, and I am very excited to play with this new device.

Congratulations, husband! You are so amazing and I am so very proud of you. I love you.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

What Do You Call It...Short Talk? Close Enough

Ever since I won the massage chair, my new mission has been to win Cherie a massage chair. Every person that has come into the store, I have sat in the HT-7450, and forced them to fill out a form. For the Sales Associates name I put Cherie's name.

On Friday, I faxed in 50 entries with Cherie's name on them.

Today was he last drawing. I missed the live webcast. Again. Sigh.

At 3:00, who should call? but Michael Hamm, the CEO of Human Touch. My heart rate increases. Cherie is talking to a customer. I try to throw things at her to get her attention while attempting to carry on a casual conversation with Mr. Hamm.

Hamm: How was your vacation?
Me: Oh, it was wonderful! It couldn't have gone better, and I got the chair!
Hamm: How do you like it?
Me: I love it! It's so great. It's the one my mom has so...
Hamm: You're mom has he 7450?
Me: Oh yes, She sat in all of our chairs and that was the one she liked best. I really like the chair, too. That was back in February. My Grandma has an I-joy.
Hamm: Wow! You have a lot of our chairs.

At this point Cherie has turned around. I point to the phone I am holding and mouth "Michael" She looks at me like I'm crazy. "What?" She mouths.

Me: Yeah, well, I really believer in them.
Hamm: Maybe that's why you sale so many of them.
Me: Yeah, uh...yeah. Maybe. So...How did the drawing today go?

I say the last part loudly, so Cherie will hear. Again, I mouth "Micheal Hamm" and point to the 7450. She turns her back on me to give her attention to the customer. Clearly, my carrying-on-two-conversations-at-once-skills need improvement.

Hamm: Great! It was the last drawing you know.
Me: Yeah, we always try to watch the webinars but there was a customer that came in at the same time so we missed it.
Hamm: Well, it was a good one. We tried to make it extra-special and we did a lot for it. I think you'll find that is was extra-special too. Speaking of which, can I talk to Cherie?

I put my hand over the receiver and tell Cherie, very loudly, that the phone is for her. She asks who it is. I tell her. Her eyes go big. She grabs the receiver. A few seconds later, she screams.

SUCCESS!!!!!

And the customer that won was so excited! I got to call her, since she was my customer, and when she came into the store she almost started crying. She was so happy.

I love my job.

Be Prepared...for Random Things Falling Apart

On Sunday, in our awesome new ward, our awesome new bishop said that he was tired of preaching about emergency preparedness and now was the time to act. He said to pretend the power was off from 5pm-10pm Monday. How cool is that?!

Monday, during my lunch break, Drek and I went shopping to get all the stuff for 72 hour kits. We made them for FHE and now we are so prepared! Hooray!!

Completely unrelated:
At work, this wonderful couple came in looking for a solution to her desk problem. I suggested they get a desk caddy. I told them they could either take the one all put together of the floor, or they could get one still in the box, but then they'd have to put it together. I highly recommended they take the one off the floor, because they are notoriously obnoxious to put together. He asked "If we take the one of the floor, who puts together a new one to replace it?"
"Well, actually, I will. But I've done them before and they get easier with time. I built all the ones that are on the floor."

So they said yes, and Dave came over to get it ready to put in the car. I kept talking to the couple and eventually Dave rolled over the desk.

The handle fell off. The handle fell off, rolled across the floor, and stopped right at the couple's feet. I was mortified. This was not the best example of the high quality desk I had just preached to them.

What could I do? I started laughing. "Well that was really well put together. Way-to-go me."
The couple started laughing too, and the guy said that he had just seen Dave unscrew the handle. Dave was laughing too and he said that he had unscrewed the handle. The couple was delighted with the desk and did buy it. Phew!!

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Dear Jacob: I Win. Love, Edward

Friday night Krisface, Lauren and I went to the Border's midnight release of Breaking Dawn party. It as a blast! Lauren wore a shirt that said: Team Edward and we taped up Kris's shirt to say: Cullin on the back.

A lot of people there were dressed up, some more extravagantly than others. My favorite costume was a girl dressed up as a Native American with a disfigured face. She was Emmy!! It was a brilliant costume! There was a group of girls with baseball type shirts on. The front said FORKS, and the back said either CULLIN or BLACK, depending on which boy they wanted to win. One shirt said said SWITZERLAND on the back and I thought that was very clever.

The three of us went into the bathroom to apply dark eyeshadow and blood red lipstick. While there, we borrowed some fake blood from a girl dressed up as Victoria. She was with two other boys who were dresses as Vampire Spawn. It was very cool.

During the party, it occurred to me that the best costume ever would have been a wedding dress and fake blood coming out of a bite on your neck. If only I had thought of that BEFORE the party.

There was a trivia game. Kris and Lauren both competed (not against each other) and both won. Kris won vampire fangs, Lauren won Breaking Dawn stickers.

Kris bought both Lauren and I Breaking Dawn pins. Mine is AWESOME!! It says: "If your life was all you had to give your beloved could you not give it?" -Bella
I love it. Thank you, Krisface!!

I crashed about 10:00pm. I called Drek and had him come get me, so I didn't stay for the whole party, but it was enough. Drek came hile we were making Vampire racelets. I didn't finish mine, but Kris made one for me. Isn't is pretty??

If you look at it sideways, it looks like vampire fangs. How cool is that??!!

I realized after I got home and tried to wash off my face that the fake blood didn't come off. That made work on Saturday very interesting.

Kris finished the book on Saturday. I finally got the book on Wednesday. I', so excited to read it!

Friday, August 01, 2008

That's When the Phone Lines Went Dead

When I first started working at my current job last year, Bob, my boss, and I spent a lot of time together. Cherie, at the time, wasn't working there, the other worker was on vacation, and there were no other employees. Thus, I was mainly trained by Bob, all day, everyday. I heard a lot of his life stories, which I found both fascinating and entertaining. After those first few weeks, the other worker came back from vacation, Cherie came back to the store, and Bob spent very little time in the store overall.

Bob took me out to lunch on Monday, just the two of us, to resolve the major problems that had occurred over the weekend. We achieved our directive and I was once again privileged with stories from his life.

Last year, one of the stories he told me was of Quest. Quest is a phone/Internet provider and, according to him, entirely inept. They could never do ANYTHING correctly, and he had countless horror stories to back this up. During our lunch, he mentioned that to save money, our store would be switching to Quest. I was stunned.

"Quest? The same entirely inept Quest that you spoke so highly of? But, why?"
He answered that they needed to ave money, and the monthly bill would be almost $100 dollars cheaper.

"But what of the horror stories? We can't run our store if they screw up our phone lines!"

"$100 a month!" And that ended that conversation.

Yeah, you can guess what happened. Wednesday afternoon our phones went dead, the store next door started receiving our calls, and worst of all, or Internet was down. No Internet means no main system. No main system means we cannot receive anything, order anything, or sell anything. So, boxes that needed receiving were stacked in the corner, things to be ordered were made into a list, and we photocopied drivers licences with credit cards when people "purchased" something so we could put it into the system when it was fixed.

Quest assured that it would be fixed by Thursday morning. They lied. All day Thursday, I added to the stack of boxes, the list of things to order, and the stack of paperwork of photocopies highly sensitive information. All day I let people walk out of the store with things they hadn't actually paid or yet.

Quest assured us that it would be fixed by Friday morning. They lied.
Today, the Quest guy showed up 7 hours late. He fixed our phone line, but in doing so, crashed the store next door's system, leaving them without credit card machines.
2 hours after that, Josh fixed the Internet by himself, and I began the task of entering in all the purchases. Things went well, until the end. Problem 1) There was one order missing, I remember the sale, but the paperwork was gone. Problem 2) On one of the photocopies, three of the credit card numbers were unreadable.

So, Josh and I tried hacking the credit card, coming up with different combinations, writing down which ones we had tried, turning he paper upside down and sideways to see if we could distinguish the numbers...all to no avail. I spent a long time digging through papers on the cashwrap, digging through papers in my box, digging through papers in Bob's stack, and digging through the garbage. Finally, I found the missing purchase. And yeah, ALL the credit card numbers were unreadable.


I think I now have horror stories of my own to back up the Quest theory.