Thursday, September 27, 2007

I'm Famous?!

Susan Norfleet is an extremely intelligent, sharp witted, articulate comedian. I had been reading Susan's blog "Fairy Lady" regularly. Then she began writing for another blog I read often called "Queersighted" This is an AOL sponsored link from the AIM homepage. Yesterday I read Susan's post Christian "Think" Tank: Isn't That Special As always she made me laugh and laugh. She is brilliant! I left a comment, and she responded with a question. I responded back, and today I am featured prominently in her post A Side of Pride Fries With That Please. If you'd like to go check out my handiwork here's the link I am very excited about it!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

A Glorious Fall Day

Today was a GOOD day. I am working in Westfield these days in my parent's new house. They have down sized and the house is well built, but very poorly decorated. I have been stripping wallpaper, washing and skimming walls. Removing casing at the top of walls meant to look like crown molding, sanding and taping woodwork in preparation for paint. Every inch will need to be painted. My mother (an interior designer) dislikes all the colors and finishes. I agree of course!
During a break, I decided to call that Indian mechanic, I got the number for the other day. He was friendly and knowledgeable. He told me that the oil leaking from Lucille was normal given the time she sat, so I can ride her. I was very happy.
I worked a while longer and decided since the universe was smiling on me today, I might call this woman I met back in February and ask her out. I have seen her on several occasions since we first met, but was never sure whether she was single or not. I've been trying to find out, but have been unsuccessful. The thought of rejection has frozen me for quite some time, but recently I saw a movie called "Train Man: Densha Otoko" It was a wonderful story about a socially inept computer geek who meets a woman on a train, and with the help of his Internet community asks her out and actually goes on a date with her, and then another, etc. If you don't mind subtitles, I highly recommend it! Not that I am in any way a socially inept computer geek, but his network of friends did remind me of this blogging community. Anyway, that also helped give me the courage to call and ask, and now we have a date. This may not seem like a big deal, but I have been so busy trying to get my business going, I haven't been on a date in nearly two years! :0
I feel optimistic, possibilities abound. This is the good stuff.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Service or Lip Service?

Thursday was a beautiful day here, and I know there aren't many of those left this year, so I thought I'd blow the dust off my Indian. All my tools and materials are already at the job site, so I could travel light. It's been a while since I to took Lucille for a ride, so I had her on the charger. I attempted to start her up, but I forgot the choke for the first few attempts, and by the time I remembered it was too late. I put her back on the charger, and decided to try again tomorrow. Then I glanced down at the floor and saw a puddle of oil forming. Oh crap! This is how she treats me when I don't take her out. Lucille hates to just sit. I haven't had any work done since I moved here from California, so I have not located a mechanic yet. This can be difficult, as they don't make Indians anymore, so there are no dealerships.

Indian was the first American motorcycle manufactured in 1901 in Springfield, MA They built bikes for the war, they built bikes for the police, and in 1953 shut down. In 1998, they reappeared, now built in Gilroy California until 2003 when they shut back down. Mine is a 2000.

I decided to stop at the nearby Harley Davidson shop to see if anyone in their service dept. was familiar with Indian. I waited quite a while at the service desk when finally one of the mechanics arrived, and asked if he could help me.

"I hope so, I'm wondering if anyone here knows their way around an Indian." I said almost pleadingly.

"Is it a REAL Indian, or a California Indian?" He snorted.

I was taken aback slightly, and all I could think was, what are the chances that I would come to a Harley dealership to have a 1953 or older collector's item worked on? So after a pause, I said, "You're kind of a jerk aren't you? I come in here asking for help, and you insult me. That must be good for business."

Now he was taken slightly aback, probably because he didn't expect a woman to stand up for herself. "I'll go ask" he said. Which left me wondering, was he going to ask if he's a jerk, or whether anyone can fix my bike? When he disappeared another woman who was in service waiting area, approached me and told me she knew a guy who works on Indians. She wrote down his name and number for me, and I thanked her very much, and left.

As a business owner, I am always appalled at this kind of treatment, and it leaves me with a very negative feeling for the whole shop, and a little tainted toward Harley Davidson, all because of one rude, disrespectful dolt!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

I Don't Do Closets

Closet: A place to keep clothes, coats, linens or other household items.

Example: I would like to hang my coat in the closet but it's allergic to hangers :(

Closet: The place we keep our skeletons (family secrets).

Example: We know Great Uncle Melvin wore sweet frilly dresses, but are there any other skeletons in the closet?

Closet: The only thing required in a room to make it qualify as a bedroom, in a real estate listing.

Example: You could get more money for your house if you listed it as a three bedroom. All you have to do is put a closet in your pantry.

Closet: The imaginary hiding place of homosexuals who think people don't already know, or possibly even suspect the truth, until they are ready to be open and confirm every one's suspicions after all.

Example: I'm afraid if I come out of the closet, my Dad will demand a paternity test.

I don't do closets is what I wish I'd said when I took the job I am currently doing. I was hired to paint the inside of 5 closets in a recently purchased home. The walls of the home are plaster, and are in pretty rough shape. The homeowner, my client, hired someone to drywall the closets prior to my painting them, all in preparation for a closet system company to come in and install closet systems in all 5. Seems simple enough. Except for one thing. The closet systems company came out and measured the closets based on the size of the floor, so the homeowner told the sheet rocker not to take off the baseboards, just drywall down to them. Then she proceeded to hire the worst drywall guy EVER! He left huge gaps between the drywall and the baseboards, in the corners, at the top. His joints bow way out giving the wall a pregnant quality. His tape was all bunched up, bubbled up, or not attached at all. Sandpaper never touched any of it. The mud was hanging on the walls like large gloppy clumps of schmutz he had applied with a horse hoof.

Have you ever stood inside a closet on a step stool sanding large amounts of joint compound and breathing in the dust for hours on end? When the dust gets into your nostrils, the moisture creates a wonderfully sticky joint compound in your nose. I imagine this is happening in my lungs as well, and can feel it in my throat. Yes, yes, I should wear a mask you say. I find when I wear one, I still breathe in tons of dust, but also sweat myself into dehydration. I tried sanding the closet while my head was on the outside, but that proved cumbersome, I couldn't see what I was doing, and my arms were about 5 feet too short. On the first day, I used 30 lbs of joint compound trying to fill the gaps and smooth out the mess. This all took a very long time and when I was finally leaving, my client's mother, who's been letting me into the house asked what time I'd be back for the next day of work. I answered, "9:00." "Can you be here at 8:00?" she asked. "Sure, if I spend the night here." I quipped. Not a morning person. "Yes, I can be here at 8:00, see you then."

Is this entertaining at all? I can continue, and tell you about today tomorrow, if you like.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Amazing Women!

I have had the pleasure of working for an organization over the past few months that runs various homes/shelters, and provides housing for people in need. The staff that makes these wheels turn successfully against extremely difficult conditions, are some of the most giving, caring, selfless, and gracious human beings on the planet. I am in awe of the women who are at the hub of this organization. I have seen such dedication, passion, and out and out hustle from these women all for a very large and diverse group of less fortunate people. It is not the gratitude that feeds them, for there is very little, if any. It is hard for someone like me to comprehend. I love the satisfaction of looking at the result of my handiwork. I thrive on the appreciation of those I work for. This is my greed. These women as near as I can tell have none of that. They derive satisfaction from the knowledge they are helping others, and making the world a better place, in small almost undetectable steps. Although I love my labor, theirs truly is a labor of love.