January 18, 2010
the thing of it is
My husband's grandmother was the first person I ever heard say "the thing of it is." The expression sounded to me like almost-something but not-quite-something, kind of like "for all intensive purposes" or "mute point." If my husband's grandmother had not been such a nice person, I might have tossed that expression right into the unedumacated bin.
Yesterday my bandmate's mom said to me - totally out of the blue - "You know, you get prettier every year." I almost fell down. That was the last thing I ever expected anyone to say to me.
The thing of it is, I have never been what anyone would call pretty. I remember, as a teenager, my father observing "well, you've never been any great beauty, but...[insert something about getting by in life on brains alone]." Men have never chased after me. People who are attracted to attractive people are not immediately attracted to me, and if they don't get close enough to notice my sparkling personality, forget it. When I feel extra-special-charitable toward myself, I'll sometimes allow that I am "interesting looking." But never pretty, not ever. And, shallow as it sounds, I have always wished otherwise.
You won't see any old photos of me on Facebook.
Recently another friend and I were talking about how some people grow into their features as they age. Maybe - miracle of miracles - this could happen with me, and I will end up somewhat more attractive in middle age.
Kay, you will probably never read this, but thank you.
January 1, 2010
all you people
All you people starting off this new year full of hope, happy and strong and full of yourselves, prone to semi-grandiose tweets and facebook statuses: I wish you the very best, and I am very happy for you.
But I am so very envious.
bad deja vu
I got my first paycheck yesterday. It was more money than I made in any given 3-month period during the past 2 years.
There are 7 people in my group at work, and this week 3 or 4 of them were out on vacation, and 2 work in an office at the other end of the country, so I was holding down the fort. This was like leaving a 14-year-old in charge of an office building. All week long, and especially toward the end of the week, I was bombarded with requests like
where is so-and-so? Why doesn't he answer his phone? Should I email him? (I don't know, I don't know, and maybe)
a long time ago so-and-so who is on vacation said he'd do this one thing, will you do it now? (if you can't tell me what he promised to do, and how, then sorry, no)
why didn't my stored procedure compile? (because you are a bad person)
from a complete stranger cruising by my desk: please tell me, in English, what the error message printed on this piece of paper means (well lessee, it says "script completed with errors," so I guess the script completed with errors)
what kind of apple is this chair? (not really, but illustrative of the kind of mind-boggling questions developers ask about SQL Server all the damn time, over and over, for years)
help, this one production server seems to be having a big problem! (server houses a database for a production application I know nothing about; appears to be hung; I'm not sure of the technical and bureaucratic hoops I need to jump through in order to stop and restart it; meanwhile production is halted and this is costing the company zillions of $$$; FML)
Add to this the fact that I don't remember how to do lots of things, or I don't know how we do it now as opposed to 2 years ago, and I have to ask whoever's around the same kinds of stupid questions people ask me. And since I am supposedly a senior-level person, I feel like a fucking impostor, and I wonder if my less-senior co-workers resent that they have to hold my hand all the time.
With dismay, I realize it's already starting to get to me, just like it did when I used to work there. This week alone, I bailed on 2 lunches and a New Years Eve party because I just didn't want to be around people. I was late to band practice because I stayed late one weeknight to work on some silly request. I haven't practiced viola or bass nearly enough because I just don't feel like doing anything when I get home. I have been running, but I feel completely adrift, with no goals. And this is bad.
But I want the security that comes with that paycheck, so I have to figure out a way to make it work. I don't want it to be like last time, where I just took it and took it until I decided not to take it anymore. So I have to make it different this time, somehow.