More Annoyed than Amused

Archive for January, 2009

Back in the Saddle

Posted by parsingtime on January 31, 2009

I worked until 10:30 on Thursday night. I’m up at 9am to start working today and after three months of relative inactivity that has made me question whether I can make it working for myself in this economy, I’m thrilled.

My “new” client has finally come through. I landed them early last year and they pay way more than any of my other clients but they never sent me any real work of substance until now. I now have a project I’m managing and because I haven’t done it in so long I’m enjoying working nights and weekends.

In other news, tonight Husband and I are going to the private invitees only grand opening of a…bowling alley. Yes a bowling alley.  Supposedly it is a fancy one with martinis and cool sofas to sit on while bowling. We shall see.  All the girls in the website photos look like they probably are wearing high heels.  Sigh. I guess this means I can’t go bowling in jeans and a sweater…this is good looking people bowling.  But don’t worry I’ll take some socks in my purse.  Even if it is a new bowling alley,  I don’t want to risk a fungus or worse from those clown shoes.

Oh, and I practiced by playing Wii bowling last night. That’s really going to help my real life bowling, don’t you think?


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Restaurant Week

Posted by parsingtime on January 29, 2009

The other good thing about working for yourself is when you join friends for dinner on a weeknight, don’t get home until midnight and don’t wake up until 8:30…it only takes 5 minutes to be ready and be in your office.  This is if you count being “ready” as brushing your teeth, not wearing bra and flicking on the kettle. Your office may require bras.

We had a really nice meal last night. It is restaurant week in Charlotte and we went out to Custom Shop and enjoyed three courses plus a glass of wine (I did not partake – I wouldn’t have been able to wake up at all this morning if I had) and a side dish for $30 a person.  We were there with some friends and were having such a nice time that we lost track of time.  Anyway a really nice dinner though I’m too old to be out late on weeknights.

It’s a good thing Husband works for himself too…otherwise the fact that he is still getting ready at 9:30 might be a problem.

Posted in Work | 1 Comment »


Posted by parsingtime on January 28, 2009

Hi is this Shanna?

No. You have the wrong number.

Is this 555-555-5555?

Yes, it is.

I’m calling because you have been selected to received a free $1000 online shopping spree.

You called yesterday and I asked you to take me off your calling list.

But Ma’am. This is a free shopping spree and I would hate for you to miss out on this opportunity.

Nothing is ever free. There is always a catch. I want to be taken of  your list.

No catch Ma’am. As a valued customer of Visa we are giving you this shopping spree.

I don’t own a Visa.  I want to speak to your supervisor.

Do you own an Mastercard or American Express?

Please take me off your list. I’m not interested. What company do you work for anyway?

Publishers something or other (I can’t remember exactly). We are giving you a free shopping spree.

I’M. NOT. INTERESTED. Please take me off your list.

But Ma’am…

I would like to speak to your supervisor RIGHT. NOW.

Okay, Ma’am I’ll take you off our list.

I get really annoyed when I specifically ask to be taken off a calling list and they insist on calling me day after day.  I get whatever the phone version is of Road Rage.

Posted in Conversations | 3 Comments »

I Hate Surprises

Posted by parsingtime on January 28, 2009

Husband has a secret from me. He told me he had a secret from me so that he could take the torture of knowing he had a secret and transfer it to me. Now I’m tortured into wanting what the secret is.  It is some sort of surprise…probably for my birthday but Valentines Day is also coming up and as he so kindly reminded me our anniversary is in seven months.  He did that to annoy me.

My ability to deduce though leads me to believe this is a birthday surprise.    I think it is a birthday surprise because we aren’t big Valentines Day people (Husband will randomly come home with a CD I’ve been wanting or Champagne and cupcakes or something similar and those moments are more romantic than sitting at a restaurant with a million other couples, in my opinion) and our anniversary seems way too far out.  He isn’t that good of a planner.

I would like to take this time to remind Husband that last year he tried to plan a surprise for my birthday and I ended up agreeing to travel for work that week, completely ruining the surprise (a trip to Montreal). So Husband, don’t forget that surprises can back fire on you.

Also, writing this post might back fire on me…I mean if it is a good surprise I’m going to have to tell the internet and recant.

No pressure or anything.

Posted in Husband | 4 Comments »


Posted by parsingtime on January 27, 2009

One of the cool things about working for yourself? You’re almost always free for lunch when your Husband calls and says, “hey let’s meet up for lunch.”

And even though we eat dinner together every day it just seems more fun meeting up for lunch on a random workday.  Especially on the days that someone forgets to wear their wedding ring and the waiter thinks the two of you are having some sort of illicit tryst.

Posted in Husband | Leave a Comment »


Posted by parsingtime on January 26, 2009

I’m always impressed when I see people doing something they are really passionate about. Whenever Husband and I talk about my job future I always tell him that I’m not really passionate about anything (so far) and I want to be really excited about going to work.  I don’t have to be excited everyday just excited that what I’m doing means something to me.

I have two friends who live in Chicago who have turned something that was a hobby into a lucrative business. Carol & Tiem both have “real” jobs. Carol is in grad school and Tiem does something techie (sorry Tiem, I couldn’t tell you your job title if my life depended on it) but they both love photography and they turned a passion into a something get paid to do. Tiem and Carol have started 847media and recently took a friends engagement photos and I was jealous because I paid a ridiculous amount for photographers at my wedding and they sucked.  Our friends engagement photos looked better than our wedding photos.  Seriously, whenever I hear people are getting married in Houston I email them to tell them not to use these photographers. They were that bad.

So if you are in Chicago and want someone to photograph your wedding, your new baby,  high school grad   or anything I definitely recommend you give these guys a call. They do some really amazing work….probably because they really love what they do.

Now if only I can get some of that passion to rub off on me!

Posted in Reviews & Recs | Leave a Comment »

Kung Hei Fat Choi

Posted by parsingtime on January 25, 2009

Husband and I have had a weird/rough start to 2009 so I have unilaterally decided that our New Year is officially starting right along with a billion Chinese people.

Since it is already New Year in China pretend I’ve handed you a red envelope, said Kung Hei Fat Choi and lets hail the year of the Ox.

Posted in Random | Leave a Comment »


Posted by parsingtime on January 17, 2009

For several years my sister and I referred to my mom as A.H.  It used to drive her crazy, especially the first few months when she didn’t know what it meant.  A.H. stood for Adolf Hitler.

You never realize how great your own upbringing is until you are faced with something different.  It’s really interesting how I’ve never thought of my mom as a really great mom (in the Hallmark sense of the word — you know baking cookies after school etc) . She will be the first to admit she never really wanted kids (my dad really really wanted kids) and definitely enjoyed us more when we became rational human beings as opposed to younger kids.  She isn’t really the motherly type and she wouldn’t be offended by that comment. 

Despite all that she is a good mother. Absolutely everything she did while we were growing up, even the things that I thought were crazy (like making me hand wash dishes even though we had a dishwasher — when you are ten hand washing dishes that could go in the dishwasher is like medieval torture designed to make your life as miserable as possible; or making us sit through a formal dinner using the correct silverware, even though we would have rather been playing Nintendo) has made me a capable responsible person who knows how to act in almost any social situation. Same for my sister. 

You don’t realize how important that stuff is until you are confronted by people who don’t know how to do simple things.  I think I met my first person like that in college.  Interestingly, that person has not changed and still does very little for themselves.

I’m planning on calling my mom and apologizing for every time I even thought about calling her Hitler.  She also deserves a spa package.

Posted in Family & Friends | 1 Comment »


Posted by parsingtime on January 16, 2009

You know, my whole life my mom has always said, “remember when you get married you marry the whole family, not just the man.”  Moms. They know more than you give them credit for.

I haven’t been writing about my sister-in-law here mostly because it doesn’t seem like a nice thing to do since she doesn’t know this site exists.  I will say that the last two weeks have been a learning experience for everyone.   However, a lot  of progress has been made so while it has been tough it has definitely been beneficial.

My biggest revelation of the last two weeks? One day when my kids tell me they hate me and point accusatory fingers at me for making their lives soooooo miiissssserabblle I’m going to take it personally and have my feelings hurt.

Posted in Family & Friends | Leave a Comment »

Taking Stock?

Posted by parsingtime on January 15, 2009

I think Husband was disturbed by my last post so I thought I would put something else up.

1. There’s something you’ve always dreamed of doing, but you haven’t done it because you think you lack the time, money, or support to do so. What is that something? And what are the REAL roadblocks keeping you from it?

Write a book. I don’t lack time, money or support but rather talent and grammar skills. Plus I don’t have any original thoughts…I would want to write a book that’s emotive like The Namesake or creative like Harry Potter. And I think I would be disappointed in myself if all I could come up was chick lit fluff.  If I had even a shred of an idea I would probably try.

I’d also like to be a guitar playing leather pants wearing rock star…but that’s even more of a pipe dream than the book writing. 

2. Name something you would eat more of if health, cost, allergy, and caloric intake were of no concern.

Cupcakes from the Red Hen Bakery, Hot Fudge Sundaes, Sushi, white dinner rolls from Great Harvest Bakery, Sweet Potato fries and I have yet to meet a carb that I don’t love.

3. What is the one singer/band, book/author, painting/painter or author artist/work of art that “speaks to you” most? Why?

Atlas Shrugged and not for Ayn Rand’s objectivist leanings but more for the idea of a utopia where people really care about what they do and everyone works hard even if it means doing menial things to get where they really want to be. I’ve come to realize that one of my greatest strengths as a person/employee is that I work hard and really care about what I do.  I am mortified when I make mistakes and strive not to make the same ones again. I take ownership over my work.  Every single person I’ve ever worked with (except for Lucius who hates me for reasons that have nothing to do with my work ethic) would work with me again or recommend me to someone else.  I think for a lot of people a job is a job and while I’ve yet to find a career that I’m really passionate about, I am really passionate about doing a good job. When I think of Dagny Taggart or Hank Reardan or any of the folks in Galt’s Gulch I’m impressed by the fact that they do something to their absolute best ability without compromise. Whether that’s actually possible in the real world? Well that’s up for debate.

4. If your country’s government handed you a check for $10 billion and empowered you use that money to support a single program, cause, or organization, where would you send it?

I can’t just pick one. Education, seeking alternative fuel sources, the environment and health care would all top my list

5. What really, genuinely pisses you off?

That the US sends foreign aid to countries we know are run by dictators and who are squirreling away that aid money into Swiss banks. My favorite example (I really do love this example Random and Emilia have heard this example exactly 58 bajillion times) is of Democratic Republic of Congo (it was still Zaire at that point) and run by a man named Mobutu Sese Seko. He mismanaged the economy, raped the country of its natural resources, took aid money from the US and when he was ousted? He retired to his Swiss bank accounts and a palace in Morocco. Laurent Kabila then became the President and the US sent money to him as well and he ended up corrupt as well. I realize we can’t know who is good and who is power hungry but maybe we should figure out a way to actually get US foreign aid to the people who really need it verses giving it to corrupt governments.

6. Describe your current level of happiness and contentment in your life. Are you living the life you imagined for yourself when you were younger?

I’m not living the life I I thought I would when I was younger  but it’s all turned out much better than I could have imagined. I’m pretty happy — certainly there are things I feel some discontent over (I think I want a new job) but overall my life is good.  I’m not drowning in massive amounts of debt, my home is not being repossessed, I can afford groceries and gas. I have good friends. I live with someone who really cares about my well-being and wants me to do whatever makes me happy and my family is healthy. I complain a lot about a myriad of things but I don’t have any real reason to complain.

Posted in Navel Gazing | 1 Comment »