Sunday, February 19, 2012

Here I go!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

My friend P came up to me at the Local grocery, shaking his head and laughing.
"Oh, just another hilarious "seminar" going on in the conference room. They're all laying on the floor on yoga mats, banging on some hippie drums and chanting."
"You know, I always forget that stuff like that even happens up there, since I never actually see it. I'm almost always working on the floor during 'class' times."
"You should make it a point to check them out. I don't think anything will ever beat the candlelight bat vigil, but I'm keeping my eye out."
"The what?"
"Candle light vigil. For the bats. You know, because they're all dying from that fungus that gets in their noses?"
"And their solution was-"
So my coworker pages me to the sales floor, and I can see on her face when I arrive that she can't wait to pass of the idiot she's talking to. I have seen this guy before. He looks like he stepped off the set of The Lord of the Rings, but with boots and a plaid wool jacket. He has this terrible, ridiculously curled beard, too much jewelery, and a funny little accent.
"Heybartender, this is Padma."
("Really? Top Chef is really wearing on her!" was all I could think.)
"What can I help you find?"
"You don't have any Cotes du Rhone. I used to always be able to find Cotes du Rhone..."
"Sure we do! Come with me," I said, walking over to the French wines. I pointed out three that were on the shelf.
"Those are too expensive. I want one for under ten dollars."
I pointed to two more.
"Those aren't good."
"Well, there aren't a lot of good Cotes du Rhone out there for under ten dollars. If you want a good one, you should try this- or this." I gestured at two that were $11.99.
"You have to go out to Adamant (another Co Op). SHe has all kinds of Cotes du Rhone."
"Well, I'm not going to Adamant. If there's something specific you want, I will order it for you."
"She has this one for $7.99!" he continued, picking up one of the ten dollar bottles.
"Well, clearly she isn't interested in making money. Unfortunately, I have to or I will lose my job. If you want to save the two bucks, then I recommend that you drive out there to buy your wine, though I daresay the gas will cost you at least as much as you're saving."
"Okay, well, thank you for hearing me out."

This happens all the time.

Friday, February 10, 2012

There is nothing I hate like I hate the doctor's office. I hate the smell and feel of the waiting room, the fecking paperwork, which I have already filled out at the three doctors' offices that I had to visit before finally landing in this one (seriously, no computers?), and the waiting. I was required to be at this self-important douche hole twenty minutes prior to my appointment, presumably to fill out the metric fuck ton of repetitive paperwork. After I turned that in (with ten minutes to spare, I might add), I was kept waiting another ten minutes before being called into the examination room. The b.h. stayed in the waiting room. I was given a crappy useless gown and told to remove my sweater and t-shirt. Luckily I had layered, because it was about fifty degrees in that room. Another ten minutes went by and a very young woman came in to do the preliminary b.s. - hwy was I there (um... check the fucking referral?), what happened, etc. That was a two minute process. After that I waited forever consuming an entire issue of Smithsonian Magazine before finally putting my clothes back on and wandering out to find a bathroom. I woman in a doctor's coat called me by name and pointed the way. when I came back out she apologized for keeping me waiting and said she would be right in. She came in a several minutes later, we talked for a few minutes, she asked questions and got a model of the shoulder to show me where the problems were, etc. This lasted approximately five minutes. Only after all this did she say that the doctor would be in shortly. She disappeared, and I read another whole magazine. She poked her head in and said she was sorry again and that she would try to push the doctor along. Did I need to be anywhere?
"Does he need to reschedule?"
No, she reassured me, though if I needed to go she could certainly understand. I explained that I had already been waiting three months to get in, and that they had already failed to return my calls or get me an appointment on three other occasions, so I was not eager to try again. I asked her to fetch the b.h. When I found out that I had been in there for over an hour, I got furious.
I told him I was going to wait five more minutes and then walk out. He reminded me that I had been asked to pay in advance and that I should demand my money back. I stewed for several more minutes before finally getting dressed, grabbing my bag, and walking out, nearly bowling the doctor over in the process.
"Oh, do you have time to see me now?" I asked in the kind of quiet tone of voice that usually precedes a homicidal spree in the movies.
He looked genuinely confused. Did I dare question him? After he'd spent so many years in medical school? Who was I, a mere non-medical professional, to assume that my time was in any way equal in value to his? It was clear that he was not used to people reacting this way. I wanted to dick punch him.
We went back in the room, we ran through the bullshit, and I contained my anger as best I could. The end result was a cortisone shot and less pain, and my solemn promise to myself that I will suck it up and drive the fucking forty miles to Burlington the next time I need to see a doctor. Fuck that place. Seriously.

Sunday, February 05, 2012

I'll finally be getting to the orthopedist tomorrow. I have no idea what to expect, but am hoping they can tell me something definitive so I can make a plan for my stupid shoulder. It hurts quite a lot by the end of each day now, and I find myself much more tired than I should be, regardless of how much sleep I get. On the bright side, being so exhausted has helped me to sleep more heavily lately.

I got news that I am offered a special rate at the ludicrously luxurious hotel in Vienna for the night of my arrival. My only concern is that it may be a ways from the city and any potential sightseeing. On the other hand, after spending almost a whole day traveling, it seems like a heated pool and a fat drink might be all that I need. Any insight is appreciated, of course. Otherwise I'll wing it.
Things have been very busy at work, and I am trying to get Sven up to speed so he can do my job while I'm off gallivanting. I have been approved for six days of educational pay for the Austrian portion of my trip, which means that with the PTO I have saved, I will only be missing half a day's pay for my whole two and a half week trip. Sweet! In other news, our friend J(male, formerly of casa del J and J, where many a dinner party was had last year) and his wife will be flying from Sweden to meet us in Paris. Have I mentioned that I am really, really looking forward to this trip?

The b.h. and I have been talking a lot lately about "what's next". We have these conversations from time to time, trying to decide where to move and what we want to do. We both think that we'd like to be gone before the start of next winter. The fact that this one has been so cold and wet and miserable has only reinforced that. We have our eyes turned toward Chicago at the moment, though nothing is set in stone. I've been gone so long now that I can't even begin to imagine where we'd live. Still, we've formed an exploratory committee. I'll keep you posted, of course.
I may have mentioned before that there is a particular customer at the LG who everyone knows and almost everyone shies away from. She is one of our many examples of Vermont Parenting, with a son who is about three that she spoils and refuses to discipline at all. This is the woman who not only brought her child into a wine tasting, but then allowed him to handle every piece of food that was being sampled to my customers, watching disinterestedly while he shoved about half of it into his face before putting the rest back on the platter. The final straw occurred when she offered him the last few drops of wine in her glass.
"Here honey, wanna try it?"
"No!" I virtually shouted across the cafe. "Please don't do that. It's against the law and I could lose my liquor license."
She completely ignored me, so I went to get my manager. By the time we returned, she was gone. She has since come to around ten tastings, each time having to be reminded to stay within the roped off area (We're really quite Puritanical here in the Green Mountain State) and leave her son outside of it.
So the other day when she showed up sans child, hovering around a couple that I was consulting about wine for their wedding. She was making herself part of the conversation, asking questions and making comments about the things I said, so I assumed that she was actually with them until I had answered all of their questions and they had walked away, leaving her crazyship and I alone.
"You're so passionate about what you do. It's really great."
"Thanks. Yeah, well, when you love what you do..."
"Do you ever have tastings?"