Wednesday, March 28, 2007

The First Robin Of Spring

It's so nice to see signs of spring everywhere. Robins flying on the breeze, laying their little blue speckled eggs. Dafodils and crocus popping up in gardens like colorful friends returning from a long trip. New green grass sprouting out of a soppy brown lawn. The squirrels chasing each other across my roof. People walking around in t-shirts, culottes, and sandals, mowing their lawns, cleaning their cars, working in their gardens, and taking out rugs to air or old furnature that needs to go to a thrift shop or the dump. After the winter lingered into March, I thought spring would NEVER stick around!

I did catch a mouse last night and took it out to the trash. If I don't catch any more before tomorrow, I'm going to assume they're gone. I have all of the pots and pans that were under my sink on the living room table, and they're taking up space.

I spent most of the morning beginning spring cleaning. I swept more mouse remains from the only other place I've seen them, the small cabinet between the stove and the sink I use for a mini-pantry. I took out my spring and summer clothes and put away most of the winter clothes. I didn't take out all of the summer clothes - I left some of the shorts and jean skirts in the bin. We're not quite there yet. If I end up needing warmer clothes, I'll just pull them back out and return them when the cold spell is over.

Unlike most people, who have to dig around in basements, attics, and garages for their seasonal clothing and items, all I have to do is go in the room in the back of the apartment. It's one of the reasons I took this place. It's so convient. No having to climb or descend steep steps. No smell of car exaust or mildew. The worst I have to do is duck my head on entering, as the door opening is kind of short. (I've seen quite a few stars on entering and exiting the back room!)

Work was, like yesterday, reletively quiet. Between the nice weather and this being the end of the month and between holidays, it'll likely stay quiet until this weekend, by which time I'll be off.
Sunshine Superwoman

Gorgeous day outside, just gorgeous, in the upper 70s and sunny as can be. It was so warm today, I still have the windows open at 12:30 in the morning. I rode up to Merchant Street in Audobon, a small town about ten minutes south from Oaklyn by bike. Merchant Street is a smaller version of Collingswood's restored downtown area. Most of the restored buildings house dance troupes, salons, or offices, but there's a few small restaraunts, a florist's shop, a deli, a bakery, a couple of gift shops...and Abbie Road, a wonderful CD store that was in Collingswood near Friends In Deed before they moved in mid-Feburary. The owner, Bob, is a very nice guy and a friend of my older friend Erica. I ended up buying "Louis Armstrong - The Definative Collection," Supertramp and Eagles greatest hits collections, and a collection of songs from various British Invasion groups, from the Beatles to Dusty Springfield.

The rest of the day was mostly as pleasant. Work was steady-to-dead; who wants to go grocery shopping on a gorgeous spring day? Besides, we're really between holidays right now. Things will pick up considerably later this week and next week as we get closer to Passover and Easter.

However, I made one nasty little discovery this afternoon that marred the day somewhat; for the first time since I moved out of Wildwood, I seem to have a mouse in the apartment. Unlike Wildwood, though, the mouse seems to be confined to the area under the sink. I removed everything from under the sink (and there was a lot!), washed anything that had mouse reminents in it, and put out traps. I think I heard one now; I'm going to check it, which won't be fun. I had a hard enough time doing this in Wildwood.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Sisters Are Doing It For Themselves

Not a terribly busy couple of days. Didn't do much at all yesterday besides hang out here and work. Work yesterday was on-and-off steady; it picked up with a vengance tonight! It was only just starting to slow down when I finished at 8.

I made a bit of a mess this morning. I don't usually have problems doing the laundry at Uncle Ken's. I didn't know my dad was still at home. (My dad who lives here is a cruise ship captain. I thought he went to work!) Anyway, I had to wait to use the laundry, and I almost missed work. I didn't think there would really be anyone around.

I did have a nice dinner tonight with my sister Rose at Applebee's, though. Rose works at an Italian restarant in Audobon a lot and I don't often get to see her. She claims she's not a people person, but she's worked as a waitress for years and always tells me about the trips she and her boyfriend Craig take, or the friends she makes dinners for. We don't always get along the best, but she's my only full sibling and I do love her and worry about her. That's what big sisters are supposed to do. :)

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Road To Moonlighting

Busy day. I ran errands this morning. Tried to get the record player working; it started acting weird again. I just don't know what's wrong. I've balanced it with the screw like the directions said, and it STILL won't work right, either playing too fast or too slow (and I do have it on the right speed). It can't be broken. I've had it for less than a year.

Work was on-and-off busy, probably due to the occasional showers, but when it was on, it was insane. It was backed up when we left because, for some reason, they scheduled two cashiers to leave at the same time, and another cashier wasn't supposed to arrive for a half-hour! The managers and a stock boy ended up coming in for us, which isn't right. I really wish they'd be more careful with things like that.

I ran to the Wal-Mart behind the Acme where I work in Audobon after a quick pizza dinner at a nice little Italian restarant/pizzaria nearby. On one hand, I didn't find what I was looking for, which was some nice, simple spring decorations and cardboard picture cutouts to hang on my wall. That Wal-Mart is a bit of a pain, which is why I only go there about once a month. It's always disorganized and cluttered, they're always out of most of the sales items, and while I've never had any trouble with the salespeople, the other customers are often rude and obnoxious. (Probably some of the same people who make my Acme job miserable.) Going there is like going to Big Lots or a warehouse store - you never know what you might find.

Case in point tonight - while I didn't find any good Easter stuff, I DID pick up the fifth season of Moonlighting
for $19.99, cheaper than even carries it, and grabbed The Road To Zanzibar out of the 2 for $11 DVD bin. "Road To Zanzibar" is the only Bob Hope-Bing Crosby-Dorothy Lamour "Road" movie I've never seen besides the rare "Road To Hong Kong."

Friday, March 23, 2007

Spring Rain

Not a whole lot going on today, other than I finally got the record player working, at least temporarily. The Debbie Gibson record I ran this morning started problematic, but finally seemed to have settled down. Thank goodness. The record was "Out of the Blue," which I must have worn out in the cassette version the girls and I had in the late 80s. I used to listen to Debbie Gibson and Tiffany cassettes for hours in the little pink cassette player I shared with my sisters.

Work was on-and-off busy, mostly of people trying to avoid today's sometimes-heavy rain. The weather was warm, into the mid-60s, and it looks like it's supposed to stay that way. The rain and yesterday's upper-60s temperatures got rid of the last of what I hope is the final major snowstorm of the year.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Spring Is Here, I Hear

Volunteer day. Erica and I went out to the Pop Shop, a diner in Collingswood down the street from the Friends In Deed thrift shop, this morning. She had toast and eggs. I had three chocolate chip pancakes that were bigger than the plate! As you may imagine, I did not finish them and one and a half of those pancakes are now sitting in my freezer for a future breakfast.

Having called out last week due to the snow/ice and just feeling lousy, I was confronted by a mess in the back when I returned. I sorted everything out as fast as I could, putting out more clothes, putting clothes in bad shape in bags for the Salvation Army, and putting winter clothes (like heavy sweaters or corduroy pants) into boxes. There were at least two different donations in the back when I got there, and more arrived as the day continued.

Actually, the reason I asked for Thursday off to begin with was for my counceling appointment, which happens to be down the street from Friends In Deed. It went well. My councelor, Scott, is a nice guy. He's really suggesting I look into local writing groups and keep trying to push getting a job at Barnes and Noble or Borders in Philly.

Both seem hard at the moment. The groups seem to be mostly at night or in the afternoon, not good with my mostly afternoon and night work schedule. Barnes and Noble isn't hiring until May; I can't even get someone to talk to at Borders. I'm just so nervous about it. I'm not good with groups. Looking up local writing groups online last night made me panic.

I went back to Friends In Deed after my counceling session and bought a small country-art-esque stuffed bunny for Easter, the first Calvin and Hobbes comic book, a CD rack (I put CDs I made myself in it), a picture of a bunnies and tulips to hang on the wall behind my dining room table for the duration of the spring, a T-shirt, a pair of flip flops, and a tank top.

I ended up wearing the T-shirt and the flip-flops home. Sometime between our arrival in Collingswood around 9:15 and my heading out for counceling at quarter of 2, it jumped from in the 30s to the upper 60s! I was so hot in the back room, I couldn't stand the heavy loafers and long-sleeved shirt I'd worn to work, and I'd wanted the T-shirt anyway.

It's supposedly going to stay reletively warm and spring-like for a while; good, as I'd like to try to get out to the dollar stores sometime this weekend, and I'll need to run other errands Saturday.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Surprises and Disappointments

I ran some more errands this morning. I've been wanting to head to the dollar stores for some small items, but I only had the time for Family Dollar. I don't really like the Family Dollar on the White Horse Pike near my apartment, but I use it when I need to (read-when I can't get to the dollar stores in Westmont). It's not as well-organized as the lovely little Family Dollar in North Wildwood, and the staff is often churlish and usually doesn't seem to know what it's doing, behind the register or while stocking. I also had to stop at Doria's, a deli down the street from me, to pick up some Provalone cheese.

I stopped at the Oaklyn Library between Family Dollar and Doria's, since it's on the way. I shouldn't have been as disappointed as I was to discover the tiny, three-room library doesn't need help of any kind. No, they don't need more employees. No, they don't need volunteers. No, the director runs the children's programs, and she doesn't need help. Of course they don't need help. They're a tiny, small-town library that's not even attached to the Camden County Library System. They don't know me, other than my occasionally checking out books. Why would they want MY help?

Work was a bit better. It was steady in the afternoon, reletively quiet by the time I left, which was a bit earlier than I thought. I'd written down the end of my shift as 8:30PM, but it turned out to be at 8. Even the main schedule in the break room said so. Cool. Some mistakes aren't so bad.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Arrrgh! :p

I won't be getting the Sailor Moon Super S Season set I ordered from! All eBay/ said was the seller had done something that got them suspended, which apparently means they can't sell anything. (All they mentioned in the first e-mail was not giving the seller feedback. Can't give feedback on what you haven't - and won't - recieve.)

Figures. I was looking forward to this. I have a few Super S videos and wanted to see the rest of the episodes.

Sigh. I'll try eBay again around my birthday and see if I can find someone more trustworthy.
Between Spring and An Icy Place

Warmer temperatures (and brief rain this evening) means spring is coming...and I finally got out to do laundry and run brief errands I put off on Saturday. I'll be running more errands in the coming days.

I'm trying to work up enough courage to volunteer at local elementary schools and libraries to read to younger kids. Reading to younger kids may have helped save my sanity during one of the worst times of my life, fourth and fifth grade, when my body suddenly started maturing and my brain couldn't catch up with it. The kids didn't care what I looked like or that my math was terrible or my peers thought I was crazy; they liked how I could come up with impromptu stories based after Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, how I made the titular animals in "The Lion and the Mouse" sound deep-voiced and squeaky respectively, and how I could come up with funny games (with the teacher's permission). I've never forgotten how happy I was doing that, and I'd love to do it again.

I don't think I'd make much of a teacher. I couldn't handle little kids all day. That said, I would like to spend a few hours showing them the joys of reading, so that they all have a way to escape that uses one of the most important parts of any person...their imagination.

Problem is, I just don't know anyone around here who is a teacher, and all the libraries I've approached don't need volunteers. I don't know how to ask them, and I'm scared to death about what they'll say when I do ask.

I just need something in my life. I need something to write about, something that doesn't involve sitting in my apartment in the morning, waiting to go to work and be annoyed. There has to be more to life than pushing groceries through a line and listening to people complain!
This Isn't Surprising

Saw this at En's blog. He's only been my favorite Sesame Street character since I was little!

You Are Bert

Extremely serious and a little eccentric, people find you loveable - even if you don't love them!

You are usually feeling: Logical - you rarely let your emotions rule you

You are famous for: Being smart, a total neat freak, and maybe just a little evil

How you life your life: With passion, even if your odd passions (like bottle caps and pigeons) are baffling to others

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Luck Of The Irish

I had a rather long day yesterday, starting when I had to go to work. The neighbors who shovel snow for my landlady were just starting on my steps when I had to go to work. I tried to carefully get down the stairs, but they were just too icy! I ended up literally sliding down the snow-and-ice covered stairs and landed on the neighbor doing the shoveling! Thankfully, the snow broke both our falls. He seemed to be fine, and the worst I did was bruise my rear. Work was busy but, other than some grouchy people, not bad. Worst that happened was getting stuck between two teenage boys whose combined IQs were probably lower than their ages. Seriously, I've had better conversations with my mechanical stuffed panda.

Things went better today. I scraped more ice off my steps, listened to the Beatles show on Philadelphia classic rock station WOGL, and took down the St. Patrick's Day decorations this morning. (I also labeled the seasonal decoration boxes more clearly.) Work was a madhouse, but most people were in a better mood - for some, it was probably their first day able to get out of the house after the Friday winter storm. After doing some grocery shopping, my dad invited me over to a friend of his' house for an excellent dinner of chicken piccatta. (I even got to keep some of the leftovers, since the hostess is going on a trip on Tuesday.)

Saturday, March 17, 2007

No Snow Days

I'm just gonna go to work. The radio says most of the major roads have been plowed, and there's no reason for me to sit in here. If the roads get really icy tonight, I'll try to leave early.

(Chuckles as "The Lepricahn Song" by the Rovers plays on WOGL. I KNEW they were going to have to play that sometime today. ;) )

Oh, and I updated the Monkees stories my best friend Lauren and I write every month. We finished tonight and I did the remainder of the editing this morning. From now on, I'll announce here when that site and my personal site are updated as well as at the sites themselves.

Oh, and Happy St. Patty's Day! May you all be blessed with warmth, luck, and lots of Shamrock shakes and Irish potatoes. ;)

Friday, March 16, 2007

Snowed In Again

Yes, we got snow.

And ice.

And sleet.

And rain.

Talk about your wintry mixes! There's about 4 inches or so of SOMETHING on my porch. I was off of work today, and I called out of volunteering. Erica called later. It turns out she only got two customers all day and shut down early. I spent the day watching movies, napping, reading, and making food.

It's bad out there. Really bad. According to the National Weather Service, it's supposed to get warmer after the weekend, meaning this won't be around as long as the ice we got last month was, but it's not fun, either. I was already pushing slush away from my front door. (I let the door stay like that last time and could only open it a fraction for about a week!)

CBS 3 Eyewitness News did reports on how the traffic on the major Philadelphia roadways have come to a standstill and there are two-hour or more delays and plenty of cancelations at the Philadelphia International Airport. (Some people were said to have been on planes for as much as seven hours!)

I don't know what I'm going to do about work tomorrow. I'm supposed to work from 2:30 to 11PM, but the roads will stay icy through the weekend, after which it'll get warmer. It doesn't help that I'm still not feeling the best, either. Maybe I'll either cry flu/nasty cold and call out, or see if I can talk them into letting me go early.
Spring Feverish

Despite the ominous forecast, I succomed to my craving and baked some delicious Oatmeal Crunch Cookies (ie, Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies from my Live Longer Cookbook with added cornmeal and strawberry jam instead of apricot), then went for a pleasant walk in the park next-door to me. The blahh day couldn't lessen the gorgeous scenery at the park, which is on a penninsula where the creek meets at three sides. I really should go down there more often. (And I wish the local kids would be kinder to that cool tree on the very tip of the penninsula - it has graffiti and paint all over it. Do any of the parents around here teach their children to respect nature?)

Unfortuantly, shortly after my return from the park, I began to feel a bit nauseous and my head started aching. I'd had a mild sore throat and some congestion, but I hoped it wasn't anything serious. I took some aspirin and went to work, but it persisted.

Work did not help. The Acme was busy today, thanks to the hype about this winter storm. I don't know why one to three inches of snow and the barest hint of ice makes everyone around here panic, but it does. It's not supposed to get that cold or stay that cold for very long, and the last two snowfalls we had were barely around for a day or two before it would go back into the 50s and everything disappeared. Adding to this was several cranky customers and some sales being taken out of the computer before they should have. (Sales end today and should still come up.)

I still feel lousy. I called out of volunteering. I hate to disappoint Erica, but between the lousy weather and the lousy headache, I don't think I'd be much of a help tomorrow anyway.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

No Business Like Snow Business

I knew it couldn't last. We're supposed to get snow and ice tomorrow. (We were supposed to get it tonight, but all I see is rain.) It sounds like the last two times it snowed - heavy, wet snow and a little bit of ice overnight that's gone within days. (According to the 10-day forecast, it's supposed to get warm again by next week.)

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Spring Will Be A Little Early This Year

It was 80 degrees today. 80 degrees. In Southern New Jersey. In March. I still have my windows open, and (despite what this blog says) it's 9:30PM. The weather isn't supposed to last (we're supposed to get a nasty storm, then more normal 40-degree weather), but it was at least nice to air out my braided rug in such great weather. I finished washing the windows and did the dusting and vacumning, which finishes my cleaning for the month.

It was so nice (and I was so not in a cooking mood) that I treated myself to dinner at the International House of Pancakes near the Audubon Acme. I had two Garden Stuffed Crepes that stuffed ME; part of one will be my lunch tomorrow.

Work was (understandably, on such a nice day) quiet until about 5 or so and people started coming home from work, by which time I was almost done anyway.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Scrubbin' In The Bathtub

Finally got the bathroom and kitchen done today after putting off cleaning for two weeks. I usually do it at the beginning of the month. I'll do the dusting and vacumning tomorrow and finish the windows. I also got the bills for the month out.

I really need to stop being so ridiculous at work. I can't help it. Panicing when I make a mistake is a knee-jerk reaction leftover from a childhood of peer mental abuse, but it needs to end. My customers must think I'm crazy, getting mad over a mishap with a check that I accidentally put in wrong, then wouldn't go through our check-cashing system at all. Why DO people still use checks for something other than paying bills, anyway? Don't they have money and debit cards for that?
More Disney Memories

Look at the first picture on this Walt Dated World page on Disney World's 1981 "Tencennial" parade. We had placemats with that very same photograph of the circa early 80s Disney gang in front of the big 10 throughout much of the 80s. As far as I know, Mom may still have them hiding in the bottom of the drawer in the china cabinet.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Long Story Short (Too Late)

...I was up so late last night reading those Disney sites, I got up too late today to do much more than eat, watch the "Sondheim: A Musical Tribute" video I got from the thrift shop, take a quick shower, and go to work. Work was off-and-on busy, with no major problems.

I really, REALLY need to clean this week and make an appointment to fix the chip in my tooth I got last November. It doesn't hurt, but it's annoying and I don't want it to get infected.
I'm Goin' To Disney World - In 1990

Just a quick note, since this was a rather quiet day, anyway. Work was fast, busy, and no problem. The nice day (and the end of cabin fever) probably put many people in a better frame of mind.

My night was taken up by a chat with my best friend Lauren and looking at these three facinating sites about Disneyland and Walt Disney World. Having never been to California, a picture book I had in the mid-80s and the Disneyland sites online are the closest I've ever gotten to visiting the former. As a Florida native, I've visited the latter twice with my sister, biological father, and (now late) stepmother, in 1986 and 1990.

I stopped going to Yesterland and Widen Your World, since they seemed to rarely be updated despite featuring a wealth of information. I went back to both tonight out of curiosity and discovered that, not only had both been updated recently and frequently, but discovered another site on defunct Walt Disney World attractions, Walt Dated World.

I have fond memories of both the '86 and '90 visits. I was disappointed to discover River Country no longer exists. My mom has some great shots we took of my sister and I goofing off on the slides and swimming hole there.

Images of '86 - Rain, rain, rain...Christmas decorations everywhere...plastic ponchoes over Mickey ears...getting my original Lady stuffed dog (my ex-boyfriend gave me another Lady in 2002)...the "Mission To Mars" sister chickening out at the last minute and not wanting to ride "Space Mountain" after waiting in a 20-minute line (I chickened out before we even hit the line)...running around in the bazaar area under the Mexico Pavillion in the World Showcase and making tons and tons of noise...

Images of '90 - My sister on horseback at Fort Wilderness...The Chip n' Dale Character Breakfast...waiting for Star Tours (and later realizing the ride had only been open for about a month when we went on - no wonder it was so busy)...River Country...finding a quiet place by the Mexico Pavillion in Epcot to see Illuminations with my biological father and getting caught in the crush going home afterwards...the pleasantly drowsy feeling I had on the Monorail going back from Epcot...the Broadway-style show at the (now covered) theater at Disney/MGM that fueled my growing interest in showtunes and classic movies...appearing as "Tess Trueheart" in a "Dick Tracy" video done for in a Disney/MGM shop (I still have the video) sister and I pretending to "drive" the golf cart my biological father rented to get around the sprawling Fort sister and I going through Mr. Toad's Wild Ride together (one of the only rides we both liked - shame it's gone)...her addiction to 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea (also gone - she's not gonna be happy about that)

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Daylight Savings?

I don't know why it's early this year, but...don't forget to set your clocks ahead an hour tonight, folks!
It Might As Well Be Spring

...At least with the weather today, it should be! It got up to the upper 50s today and was absolutely gorgeous. It was so gorgeous, work was dead for the first time on Saturday in ages. (I was actually called in for Saturday earlier in the week, and other than a few of the usual annoying customers, I had no problems).

I did my laundry this morning and ran to the bank while it was in the dryer. The bank was actually a bit busy; I guess I'm not the only one who got my tax refund this week.

I have a busy week ahead. I MUST clean this week, even if I have to spread it over a few days. I had to put it off last week, and the house looks awful. The Acme must still have a lot of people on vacation (and sick), because I got a lot of hours again. I told Erica I'd volunteer on Friday, but I may opt out of it or just do half a day, because I really WOULD like to get to the Deptford Mall sometime soon.
Helping Out

Volunteer day. Erica was much busier today than last week, and I did a lot in the back room. I mostly put aside a few donations, separated "spring" (light long-sleeved shirts and light sweaters, light-weight pants) from "summer" (tank tops, sleeveless shirts, gauzy shirts, shorts, skorts, swimsuits) items. Winter and summer items were returned to boxes; spring items went on the main floor or were hung on racks to be put out later. Erica, Mary Anne, and I went out to the Crystal Lake Diner a bit later in the day. Mary Anne had fish and "chips" (French fries); Erica and I had a spinach and chicken wrap.

Busy week coming up. I have the opposite problem of last week - lots of hours, but a long night next Saturday. I hate it when they do that. I've told everyone at the Acme repeatedly that I can't really work until 11 or 12. I can't always get rides that late. No one wants to listen. Is it really that important that I've only worked at the Audobon store for a year?

I'm still feeling restless, too, and yesterday's mess was no help. I'd love to meet more people my own age, but I'm really shy about joining groups. I don't even know what kind of groups 28-year-old single women join! It was so much easier in high school and college when I knew everyone in the group from classes and didn't feel like I stuck out so badly. My councelor, Scott, suggested I join a writing group, but it's very hard to do. I'll look them up, but I can't shake the feeling I'll walk into the room, sit in the back, and feel like a baby around sophisticated adults. I don't want to go through what I went through in grade school again, letting the kids snicker behind my back while I screw up on the math problem on the blackboard.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

One Darn Thing After Another

Urgh. That's what I get for thinking I can ride cross-town, from the Audubon Crossings shopping center on the Black Horse Pike to the Genesis Counseling Center in Collingswood, in less than a half-hour. I went over to Audubon to pick up a practically-new copy of the 2-disc special edition DVD of the Disney "Sleeping Beauty." That set's been out-of-print for about three years, and it's very, very expensive online. That FYE's been great to my Disney collection; I've also picked up good used copies of the 2-disc "Aladdin" and the also out-of-print 2-disc "Beauty and the Beast" there. My video copy of "Sleeping Beauty" turned 20 this year, and I've been looking for a replacement since I got my DVD player.

Unfortunately, I got lost on my way to Collingswood, and what I had hoped would be a 40-minute ride turned into an hour. I was late for my counseling appointment and only got a half-hour in. Then, I was late getting home, and missed an interview with a college student I met on the X-Entertainment blog who wanted to ask me about my memories of "The Babysitters' Club" for a paper she was doing. I barely had enough time to make dinner and get into my uniform before heading to work, and I was almost late for that!

Though work wasn't as busy tonight, we were still short on help, and we ran out of plastic bags again. That happens once every couple of months when someone forgets to order more. There were supposed to be more coming in tonight, but they were down to just paper bags when I left at quarter of 8.

(On the other hand, I DID pick up some extra hours on Saturday tonight.)

I'm just hoping for a nice, quiet day of volunteering tomorrow!

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Snow Days

Yes, we did get snow here in Camden County today, about 2-4 inches' worth. A bit less fluffy and it iced up a little tonight, but otherwise, not too different from two weeks ago. It's supposed to get warmer starting tomorrow, so it should disappear quickly again.

I walked to the PNC Bank on the White Horse Pike, about a ten-minute's walk from my apartment, to deposit my tax refund check. It was actually a lot of fun. I haven't had a good walk in the snow since I lived in North Cape May and would walk to the WaWa on Bayshore Road on a snowy day for a hot chocolate or cappuccino. West Clinton Avenue looked quite picturesque under a blanket of white. It was fun to hear the snow crunching under my booted feet and realize how strangely muffled everything is when snow's falling, even the airplanes flying into Philadelphia International Airport. A few people were out trying to shovel the walks, but the snow was falling too fast at that point for it to really be of much use.

(I stopped at the 7-11 across from the PNC Bank and bought a "green tea latte," which tasted sweet and a little gritty; I think it came from a mix.)

Work was pin-drop quiet until the snow finally stopped around 5:30 and people started getting out of work. Thank goodness I only had a four-hour day today!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Been A Long Day

I got called in at 12:30PM today. I never did find out why. Assumably, half my co-workers and/or their families are falling to the dreaded "cold-and-flu season." Either that, or they're tired of putting up with our customers and wanted to play hooky. Either way, I totally understand. Oh well, I need the extra hours. Other than that, it was pretty much the same as Sunday and Monday, with the added panic of possible snow tomorrow.

(Jodie is right; why does everyone within a five-mile radius panic when snow comes? It isn't as if most people in the northeastern Camden County area are that far from a grocery store.)

I did get my tax return, though, which will be enough to pay rent for another month, get a nagging hole in my tooth fixed (it doesn't hurt, but I'm afraid it may get infected), have a counceling appointment this week, and maybe treat myself to a Sailor Moon season set off eBay. I'm debating the fourth season. The second WOULD be nice, but I found two videos of the fourth season at the Philly Tower Records in October before they shut down, and I'd like to see the rest (and donate the videos to the thrift shop).

Monday, March 05, 2007

Return of the Cold Cotton Candy

Looks like more wet snow. It doesn't look like it's supposed to linger long. The snow we got last Sunday is long-gone, along with almost all of the ice from the big February storm.
Chocolate Cures All Ills

Basically, my day today was something of a repeat of yesterday. I still can't get the record player that came with my Victrola to work - it always goes too slow or too fast, no matter how much I try to "balance" it. Many of my customers were still obnoxious - the complaints of the past few days still apply. And it was windy as heck tonight, too. It took me twice as long to ride home on the bike, which is a pain no matter how many calories I'm losing.

One good thing happened this evening that made up for a lot, though. I got a free 1-pound box of chocolate.

Let's flashback a little (screen gets wavy) back to Valentine's week to explain. The Acme had a huge sale on 1-pound boxes of Russell Stover's chocolates, $6.99 for a $9.99 box for Valentine's Day. We were also having a contest - the cashier who sold the most boxes won a $25 gift certificate to Victoria's Secret.

I don't know who won the gift certificate (it sure as heck wasn't me), but thanks to that massive ice storm we had, we didn't really sell much in the way of chocolate or anything else that week besides rock salt. We didn't even sell much during the usual post-holiday half-price sales. Big red heart-shaped boxes of chocolates have sat in the back for weeks.

Patrice, who is one of the head stock people, decided it was finally time to unload the last of those boxes of chocolates. She gave a bunch of flats of heart-shaped boxes to the cashiers and told us to give them away to whomever wanted them.

She didn't say this excluded employees. ; 0 )

Anyone want a chocolate? ; 0 )

2 Eateries Gutted In Cherry Hill Fire

...And one of those two eateries just happens to be the Chili's Mary Ann, Erica, and I got the free burgers at a few weeks ago! I can't believe this. My jaw nearly hit the floor when I saw that article in the print Courier-Post in the lounge room in the Acme. I feel so sorry for them, especially that waitress and manager who were so nice to us. : 0 (

Sunday, March 04, 2007

What Did I Do To Deserve This?

I'm so tired of working in the Acme. I like my co-workers a lot, and the store is nice, but the clientele is going to drive me clinically insane. Seriously, I'm sick of their fussiness. I was at work for four and a half hours and almost went crazy. People buy giant orders, then wait until the last minute to say 'Oops, I can't buy that, put that back.' They sit there and watch you bag when there's no bagger...or they yell at their kids to bag everything. They make a big deal out of nothing when there's the tiniest price discrepancy and hold up the line just because they didn't have enough sense to read the sale sign.

And I'm going to have to reschedule my counceling appointment AGAIN, because I was irresponsible and kept putting off asking for that day off until it was too late, and my rent is late and will continue to be late because I don't have enough in the bank to cover it and counceling.

What is wrong with me? What did I do to deserve all this?

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Big Woman On Walnut Street

Finally made a second job-related Philadelphia trip after doing some chores in the morning. Not quite as much luck job-wise this time. I still couldn't flag down a customer service person at Borders, Barnes and Noble said "Come back in May when the college students leave," and the little used book-and-record store on 10th street was run by a middle-aged couple who needed no help.

Did make some nice finds at the record store, though - a Jeanette MacDonald/Nelson Eddy record from the 70s (including some of their solo stuff), the original cast of the 1979 Broadway musical "They're Playing Our Song," Billy Joel's "The Bridge," and the 1986 Rhino Records re-release of "The Monkees Headquarters." Also found a lovely little pizzaria on Chestnut Street and slid into the place just in time for some great veggie pizza before they closed. : 0 )

Friday, March 02, 2007

Coming Of Spring

I awoke this morning to a torrential rain storm...or more accurately, a torrential rain storm woke ME up, at about 5:30, no less. It was really the most exciting thing that happened today, other than the rain finally disappeared around mid-morning, the sun came out, and it was at least 60.

I volunteered today. The store wasn't really very busy, and I mostly organized things in the back so the people who come in tomorrow can put out the spring clothes and put the winter clothes away. Didn't find much at the store that caught my fancy, just a Calvin and Hobbes comic book and a cheap camera to sustain until I can find afford a good one. (My old camera died last year.)

I made a simple-but-lovely dinner for myself at home tonight, spaghetti (really the last of the Asian noodles leftover from my Chinese New Year dinner), chicken parmasagn, and (defrosted frozen) green beans with Ragu sauce. Nothing fancy, but very filling and tasty. The leftovers will feed me for the rest of the week.

I'm hoping to get back into Philadelphia to talk to Borders and some of the other stores I missed the last time I was there tomorrow, since I'm off and it's supposed to be another nice day. (Sadly, it's not supposed to stay that way - according to Yahoo!Weather, it'll be warm over the weekend, then get cold again by Tuesday.)

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Beginning Of the Month

My day's been rather...annoying. The plumber was supposed to show up at 8AM, so I got up early. Of course, he didn't show up until noon, which (understandably) upset my landlady. And now I find I need a new toilet; the old one's been making weird noises and has some kind of problem with the flapper.

And it's the beginning of the month, so work is busy with people getting their Social Security checks and obnoxious women from Camden who have these huge attitude problems, think the entire world is out to cheat them, and either won't help bag or give you so many orders, you wonder why they don't do it themselves. (Or they have their children do it and yell a hundred orders at THEM until you're ready to throttle all of them. : 0 p)

Thank goodness I'm off for the next two days!
Not The Charmer

Your Birthdate: April 14

You work well with others. That is, you're good at getting them to do work for you.
It's true that you get by on your charm. But so what? You make people happy!
You're dynamic, clever, and funny. And people like to have you around.
But you're so restless, they better not expect you to stay around for long.

Your strength: Your superstar charisma

Your weakness: Commitment means nothing to you

Your power color: Fuchsia

Your power symbol: Diamond

Your power month: May

Well, I'll believe the restless part, but I'm terrible at getting people to do things! : 0 p

And I HATE fuchsia! Diamond's my birthstone anyway, but I can't stand any shade of pink.