Thursday, August 05, 2004

Bad News

My new nephew, Skylar, is in the hospital with jaundice, probably due to his small size. His mother is feeding him every two hours, they're pulling every nurse they can, and he's under ultraviolet lights.

Please, please, PLEASE, let him live. : ' 0 (

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Monkee-Ing Around...and the Arrival of a New Family Member

First of all, I would like to announce to one and all....I AM AN AUNT! My sister Anny Jackman had her son, Skylar Mikah, at 5:54 PM on Saturday, July 31st, 2004. He's a tiny, adorable thing, weighing in at 5 pounds, 10 ounces. He's long, too - he's gonna be a tall boy. He already has a head full of hair and his mother's nose. : 0 ) Mom and Dad have asked to be called Nana and Pop Pop. Mom says she has enough people calling her "Mom," and Dad does NOT want to hear "Grandpa." ; 0 ) They've spent the summer re-doing Keefe's old room for Anny and the baby and putting Keefe downstairs, as well as getting new furniture for their bedroom, and I think it all looks fabulous - I love the orange and soft green colors used for the walls. : 0 D

Second, you may wonder why I haven't posted since April. Where have I been? Well, quite literally, nowhere...and everywhere. My friend Lauren and I started a little Monkees role-play story between the two of us in our daily e-mails sometime in late April, just to goof off and practice the guys' dialogue (those Texas and British accents can be quite a handful....) for our fanfics. By early May, it had grown out of the e-mails and onto the IM, where we concocted two stories, one a fantasy, the other revolving around the complicated but fun Yahoo Monkees fanfic group we both belong to, Long-Title.

We had so much fun IMimg the "Dream World" story, we decided to do another IM role-play after the Memorial Day crowds came and went from the Wildwood area....and we enjoyed THAT one so much, we decided to just keep going and do one role-play story per month, usually at the beginning. The format is two stories, one "just for fun" two-to-three part pure sitcom-esque tale meant as a warm-up, and one longer, more action/drama-oriented story. The running gag in our stories is that the six of us - Lauren, me, and the four Monkees (Mike the tall hatted or sunglassed one, Micky the curly-haired nut, Peter the sweet blonde, and Davy the short girl-chaser) use the power of our imaginations (represented by a soft, blue light) to "dream" ourselves into any scenario or place we choose, from the Wildwood Boardwalk to the woods to the Wild West to a sinister factory in Davy's hometown of Manchester, England. We're probably going to tone down this somewhat after our next few stories, which will take us into Peter's imagination (a reprise of the famous second season Monkees episode "Fairy Tale") and Micky's (Lauren is planning something with gangsters and the beach...).

Other ideas planned for upcoming role-plays include another go-around with the infamous Mr. Zero from the second season Monkees episode "The Devil and Mr. Tork," spying on a record company that may be defrauding the public, and exploring the origins of the guys' clumsy alter egos from the first and early second seasons of the show, the Monkeemen. We'll also be writing short connecting vignette-style tales between the role-plays, and we also have plans to eventually turn the longer stories into full-blown fanfic, starting with "Dream World."

Oh, yes, and there is some romance here. In our stories, Lauren has married Micky, and I'm going in an on-again, off-again romance with the eternally stubborn Mike. ; 0 )

Want to see what we've done so far? Here's Lauren's Monkees site, where all of our current stories are posted.

The role-play and Anny's new son have occupied much of my mind, but not all of it. I know I've said this, but I REAAAAAAALLLY need to get out of the Acme. It's been driving me crazy this summer. They hired way too many people to cashier, so I haven't been getting the hours I should. The new people are a pain in the rear end. They're mostly nice, but they either come from foreign climes or larger stores where they have people to do everything for them. In the tiny Wildwood store, cashiers are expected to do more than just stand behind a register - we clean, gather baskets and return them to the front of the store, put things away, you name it. Few of the newcomers understand this. They either think they're too good to dirty their hands or are just used to larger, less self-sufficent stores. One of the girls asked me the other day how I could clean the bathrooms, since I was a cashier. I asked her how I couldn't. It's not like the bathrooms are huge, they need to be done (and done RIGHT), and I get away from the registers and have a chance to think.

And because we have so many new people, I've been getting far fewer hours than usual for this time in the summer. By the height of the summer in mid-late July, I'm usually clearing 40 hours a week easily. This summer, I think I've made 38 twice. Mostly, it's been 32-35, which is not only insulting to a cashier of my experience (I've only been working at the Acme on and off for six years), but isn't helping me pay the rent. I've tried to explain this a billion times. I live ALONE. No one is helping me pay the rent or my bills. This is my only job - I'm not a waitress or a game barker at night. I can barely handle this job sometimes.

My sister and my mom suggested a temp agency, and I may look into that. No newspaper has any interest in hiring anyone besides sales people, and I'm tired of 2,000 people a day in my face. I want normal hours that don't change in the summer, a body of co-workers that doesn't fluxuate wildly with the seasons, a building that's in GOOD shape, and a place where I don't have to face a bunch of cranky, rude idiots and snobs for four to eight hours. : 0 p