Tag Archives: annoying

annoying places i find my hair.

tumbleweed

a dramatic depiction of my hair flying around our house. i don’t know that man.

the plight of the jew isn’t just hypoglycemia (HAVE IT) and hiatal hernias (ALSO HAVE THAT), it’s huge, thick hair, which, yes, i also have.

why do we have such thick hair? i suppose to keep our heads warm in the winter and to keep us complaining in the summer when humidity forces it to swell so dramatically that we can’t fit through doors and we have to ask complete strangers to please give us a push because we’re late to our appointment with our GI doctor.

there are pluses and minuses to our thick hair. i suppose one of the more significant minuses, at least for me, is that fact that i’m constantly shedding hair wherever i go. really. our house is like a old western. puffs of my hair—i honestly don’t even know where they come from, they’ll appear 5 minutes after we vacuum—fly by like tumbleweeds. 

my hair is everywhere. here are some of the more annoying places it shows up:

the dishwasher.
so annoying i don’t even want to talk about it.

attached to my lipstick/lip gloss.
especially when we’re driving with the windows open. in fact, you know what? i’m  not even going to put anything on my lips if we’re going to have the car windows open. screw it. not even chapstick. i’ll go without. i’ll put it on when we park.

on holly.
she’ll unknowingly have one of my hairs somewhere on her body and yet she can’t find it so she think she has some kind of neurological condition until she figures out it’s actually my hair. sorry, babe.

the dryer.
OMG IT’S A SPIDER A POISONOUS SPIDER. i faint, only to wake up to discover it’s just a bunch of my hair that’s somehow been tied together by the force of the dryer. great. now i have a bruise on my head and i’m going to have to go to my primary care provider.

my purse.
HOW?

containers of spare change.
?!?

my mouth when i’m chewing my food.
where in the HELL is the MANAGER, there’s an insanely LONG HAIR in my. wait.  this hair is connected to my head. it’s my own hair.

holly’s food.
sorry, honey .

my mother-in-law’s house.
sorry, susan.

anywhere i stay overnight.
sorry everyone.

anywhere i go for 5 minutes or more.
sorry humanity.

if you have long hair—or are cohabiting with someone that has long hair—please feel free to add to this list.)

need entertainment? put a dumpster in front of your house in baltimore and watch what happens

good times: the dumpster in front of the old man’s house. nothing cheers up baltimoreans like a good old-fashioned dumpster dive (or dumpster dump).

so someone finally bought the old man’s house even though there was a body imprint on the floor, about a million dead flies in the street-facing basement window and, when the weather is just right (rainy/humid/hot), smells like, well, if you’ve been reading this blog long enough, you know what it smells/smelled like.

for those of you who need a little background, the “old man” was our elderly neighbor who kept to himself–so much so that when he passed away in early fall 2009, no one knew until two+ weeks later when we smelled something, which turned out to be the stench of–not to be disrespectful or anything–human decomposition.

it was extremely sad but also extremely frustrating as we experienced (and smelled) the ripple effects of a house–which we share walls with, btw; we live in a neighborhood of traditional baltimore rowhomes (here’s a great shot of east baltimore rowhomes)–that was in a state of disrepair for far too long. while “cute,” the problem w/rowhomes is that your neighbor’s problems really become your problems, from rats and basement flooding to, yes, foul odors.

anyway, the estate owners very recently sold the house to some investors and they gutted the place, much like we did with ours years ago. well, with gutting a rowhome comes a dumpster. and with a dumpster comes, yes, folks, the very best of baltimore.

oh dumpsters! put a dumpster in front of your house in baltimore and ppl will come out of the woodwork to either take stuff out of it or drop things in it. it’s like a friggin parade.

nothing cheers up a baltimorean like a dumpster. b/c i suppose our houses all contain stuff we’ve been meaning to throw away but haven’t b/c it doesn’t fit in a garbage can? and suddenly, neighbors you haven’t seen in, like, 3 to 4 years are coming out in their pajamas carrying an old crib or microwave to throw in the damn dumpster that someone else is paying for.

dumpsters also, apparently, inspire some baltimoreans to do long-awaited home improvement projects. the woman who lives on the other side of the old man’s house told us she ripped off all the carpeting from her stairs simply b/c she would be able to throw it out.

“and i’m about to start on the basement,” she said.

well then.

and then come the scary dumpster people. they come in the middle of the night and they are loud. these are not “freegan“-types, either. they are loud and frightening and make me scared to call the police as i’m convinced they have night vision similar to that of a raccoon or possum and can see my eyes peeping thru the curtains at them. and then they will kill me.

we have not had a decent night’s sleep since they parked the dumpster in front of our house. b/c every. single. night. every night! the scary dumpster people come and jump into the the damn thing to see what they can fish out and sell.

and let me assure you, freegans (i’m speaking as if i have this huge freegan following, which, maybe i do? i have no idea), the type of dumpsters i’m talking about contain no leftover tofu, beets or other discarded vegetarian delicacies. this sh*t is dirty, dirty, dirty (and in our case, partially saturated with the sort of bodily fluid that only comes with death): nasty rotten wood, moldy drywall, old foggy glass–if you can dream it, it’s in there.

and then there are the throw-it-in scary, middle-of-the-night dumpster people. who pull up their rickety pickup trucks at 2am and dump their crap in there like it’s high noon.

(we really had no idea there was so much glass in the damn dumpster until people started jumping around in it, and throwing stuff in it. it’s really been an enlightening few days.)

so, despite dumpster-related issues, noise, dust and the fact that the workers were pounding so hard on his walls today that the mortar in our exposed bricks started falling onto our stairs (good times!), it feels good that not only is all the stinky stuff (hopefully) gone, but a painful time in our lives can finally be put to bed. i think “the old man,” wherever he is, would be glad to see it.

geesh, this was supposed to be funny and here i’ve gotten all sappy on you. oh well. that’s baltimore for ya. generally funny & ridiculous, but every once in a while it’ll tug at your heartstrings. but then you think of the $60 “environmental citation” ticket you got for “weeds” in your tiny-ass tree pit last summer and the feeling goes away. ahh. that’s better.

the back of the old man's house

 

i fought the law and the law won

last friday i went to fight a baltimore city parking ticket. one of many i have racked up over the years. why? b/c when i/we get home after dark i refuse to risk life and limb by parking in a legal spot five blocks away and walking back to our house. i swear, most of the “illegal” spots are just marked “no parking” simply to make money for the city. you city ppl know exactly what i’m talking about. it’s not just baltimore.

well i guess i’d had it a couple months ago. i was slapped with yet another $27 ticket and announced to holly that i was going to fight it.

“babe,” i stated (loudly, as always), holding the damn thing up (more like waving it hysterically). “until this city is safe enough for a woman to walk around at night, i will keep parking in spaces that will keep me from getting killed. or at least mugged.”

she nodded and added a “hell’s yeah.”

it’s the principle of it all, i said. and so i went online and marked that i’d fight the damn thing.

first the city sent me a letter saying they got my request for trial and that i’d be receiving a court date. then i got another letter saying they were about to send me my court date. then, two days later, i got yet another letter announcing my doggone court date. (why is it necessary to waste both paper and money sending letters to say your going to send more letters?! good to know our tax money is funding that. and killing trees.)

anyway, last friday was the hearing. i had to make a special trip back for it b/c i was visiting my family in philly having a blast. so that annoyed me. before i even went to the hearing, i knew it was a stupid decision to fight it. i felt like just paying the damn thing. but no. it was too late. and i knew i was going to lose as soon as i walked in the damn courthouse.

first of all, my car read 118 degrees when i got in it to leave for the trial. when i got to the courtroom, everyone was standing outside of it waiting to get in. apparently, most of the ppl there don’t use dial. or don’t shower. i was like, people! have you even heard of deodorant?! it’s 2010! i thought i might pass out from the smell. it was that bad.

when we were finally herded into the courtroom, we all sat in these pew-like seats that reminded me of synagogue. we stood for the judge, who took her sweet old time coming out. then we all had to sit thru everyone’s “not guilty” pleas. i was dreading my turn. it was like judge judy. except worse b/c i wasn’t watching it on tv, it wasn’t funny and i actually had to participate.

“jessica…leshnif? leshniv? leshnikoff?”

LESHNOFF! fer cryin out loud, lady! two syllables! LESH. NOFF. leshnoff!

i walked up and went up to the stand and swore i’d tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth so help me etc. i pleaded not guilty even tho i knew i was guilty of parking in a spot marked “no parking.”

“is there anything you’d like to tell me?” she said. (she said this to everyone.)

i wanted to tell her that this was all B.S. and i should get the ticket revoked simply b/c i did not smell bad.

“your honor,” i said in a shaky voice, suddenly feeling extremely dorky and uncomfortable, not to mention hot (not howyoudoin hot; hothot, as in: overheating)  in my skinny (but dressy) jeans. “this is the manifestation of a larger, ongoing problem.”

then i promptly forgot everything i wanted to say and babbled something about “as a woman, you understand the need to feel safe at night” and so on and so forth. she, of course, cut me off.

“i’ll drop $22 of the fine,” she said, and bam! went the gavel and then they handed me a printout, saying i needed to go to the cashier. i felt like i won in a way, even tho all my nosehairs had been burned out by the surly courtroom crowd’s b.o.

when i got out into the hallway i examined the paper. if i only had $5 left to pay (a  $27 ticket minus $22) then WHY did it say i had to pay $27.50? MORE than the ticket itself? i figured there had to be some kind of mistake.

“court costs,” the cashier explained. “this judge is known for them.”

so there i was. wasting time and gas and nice girl time with my mom in philly, not to mention time with my partner on a friday afternoon at home (and we had weekend out-of-town guests arriving in just a couple hours to prepare for), and i owed more than the ticket?!!

“you have got to be kidding me,” i told the cashier.

she sighed in agreement while i wrote the city a check.

that clash song, “i fought the law and the law one” kept playing in my head as i drove home. they will get you one way or another with these damn parking tickets. my advice is to pay the damn things. before they triple the original fine and then you’re left wondering if every cop on the street has a warrant out for your arrest. not that that’s ever happened to me. i’m just saying.

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change of heart: respect the chair

the other day i griped about all the people saving parking spots in our neighborhood, more specifically the chairs, cones and milkcrates used to save them. what is this, middle school? i thought. on that particular day of griping, the snow was almost gone and i thought  the need to save spaces was obnoxious and unnecessary. now that we have three million feet of snow, i am eating my words. we dug out our spot friday morning and then, yes, broke out a folding chair from the basement and…saved our spot.

it’s one of those tailgate-style chairs. canvas with cupholders on the arms. it sort of…broke, the second time we put it out. it’s a pretty sad sight, our chair. but hell, it’s better than what one of our neighbors put out: a rusty old charcoal barbeque with a sponge-top mop leaning on it. my favorite are the folding chairs. you know, the type your parents–or grandparents–put out for extra people at dinner. for like, the kids table at thanksgiving. a close second are wooden kitchen chairs. patio furniture trails just behind. hell, just this morning i saw four matching wooden chairs in a single spot (?!). with cushions tied on and everything. all that was missing was the dining room table. hard not to laugh when you see something like that. i felt like sitting down in one of them and ordering a coffee.

anyway, the street parking situation in our neighborhood is downright wild west by this point. ppl are parked diagonally, backwards, however they can fit. i’ve never seen anything like it. we’ve been trying to limit the number of times we drive because, despite our truly intimidating broken green canvas tailgating chair, we’re scared of losing our spot.

“if anyone, ANYONE! takes our spot,” holly said, her jeep wheels roaring, as we pulled out of our spot earlier this weekend, “I WILL RAM THEM WITH MY JEEP.”

“yeah babe,” i concurred. “ram them. jerks.”

 i hope it doesn’t get that far. but something tells me she’s not kidding.

 she actually exchanged some words with a guy on friday afternoon when she left to go pick up dinner supplies and then our friends up in federal hill. he was waiting to take our spot.

“don’t even think about it,” she told the guy, getting out of her car. “this is my spot.”

“well, where’ya going?” he said.

“i’m going to the store, and i’ll be right back!”

“well how long you gonna be?”

“it doesn’t matter how long i’m gonna be. this is my spot. you’re not parking here.”

“you’d better get a chair.”

 “oh i’ve got a chair right here.”

 and out came the chair. and the guy did the right thing (the smart thing) and left our spot alone.

 so yes, i’ve had a change of heart. respect the chair. respect the ridiculous amount of time it takes to dig your car out after three feet of snow. our neighbor, lori the teacher, put a tv tray out (she didn’t have anything else) and can you believe someone had the nerve to move it and park in her spot?? this isn’t two inches of snow we’re talking about. or even two feet. it’s dog eat dog out there, ppl. dog eat dog.

holly and i actually changed our gameplan should someone park in our spot. we will get out our shovels and, yup, you guessed it: shovel them in. respect the chair, ppl. respect the chair.