Thursday, June 20, 2013
Things That Cheese Me Off
Here we are again, with me using this space to rant and whine and, hopefully, entertain you with my tales of woe. Maybe it should bother me that I’ve accumulated so many of these stories. Pity I didn’t save my old pile of rejection slips. Talk about tales of woe …
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I drive stick shift, so when I’m in a residential area I’m constantly yanking that shaft around as I’m forced to speed up, slow down and brake for other drivers and unwary pedestrians. Yes, I did say "yank the shaft around." I write M/M erotica. Anyway, I can deal with human obstructions. It’s stop signs and red lights that really cheese me off.
A full stop means I have to shift back down to first and start over, building momentum until the next stop sign or signal forces me to a halt. This is why I love highways. I love to visit the Jersey Shore too, but in Wildwood they’ve got lights at practically every intersection. Drives a sticker nuts.
Here’s what I really hate. I’m tooling along on the blacktop. Up ahead I spot a red light. I slow down, downshift, and come to a stop. At the exact moment I stop, the light turns green. Now I have to build up speed again, until I come to the next light. Thanks for nothing, traffic patterns.
Sure, I could get an automatic. This whole stick shift thing was accidental anyway. My first car was a VW Beetle, one of the originals, and a stick shift. I didn’t even know how to drive it when I bought it. But I like Volkswagen and stuck with it over the years. My last two cars, both Jettas, were stick. I bought them because they were in my price range. My next car may be automatic. It will probably be a Volkswagen. Let’s see what my finances look like when my current car bites the dust.
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The most puzzling job interview I ever had lasted roughly twenty minutes, but had me questioning this guy's methods for hours afterward. Fortunately this was another close-to-home job, right up the street, in fact. Good thing, because if I’d had to drive to get to this turkey I would have been really cheesed. The guy spent the entire time yakking about people who used to live in the neighborhood. “Do you know the Schwartz family? I went to school with them.” Stuff like that. I kept trying to keep the topic on the job and my qualifications and he kept veering off into the days of yore. What the Havarti?
The only conclusion I can reach is that they’d already decided on a candidate before I got there, and this schmuck was running out the clock. Well, thanks for wasting my time, jabroni. And people wonder why I hate job interviews. And jobs in general, come to that.
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I don’t have Internet at home (yet), so I have to go to the library or McDonald’s or someplace with WiFi to check my emails and research publishers. Oh, and watch vids on YouTube. The library computers have the sound turned off; you have to bring headphones if you want to listen to stuff. Now that I have the laptop, I can watch and listen to music videos out in the library lobby.
I try to keep the sound turned low so I don’t bother other visitors. This doesn’t stop them from bothering me.
I swear people get louder the minute they think you’re trying to listen to something else. Noisy families walk through the lobby. People hold conversations right next to where I’m sitting. They’re not even trying to spy on what I’m watching. I’ve already got the sound turned down so low I miss words when I exhale, and then the background noise ramps up while I’m trying to listen to something. This only happens while I’m on YouTube. The second I go onto a site with no sound, it gets quiet again.
The following actually happened last week. I was in the library lobby and decided to watch a couple of my favorite vids. There was a guy sitting at the table closest to mine. I got on YouTube, clicked on my vid … and somebody who knows this guy stopped by and sat at his table and they had a conversation. I kid you not. I gave up halfway through and went over to another site, and the person left. Strike one.
After a bit I decided to try again. As I’m typing what I want in YouTube search, I glance over at my table buddy. He’s got his cell phone out. You’ve got to be kidding me. Nope. Just as my video starts, his call goes through. He proceeds to hold a conversation which lasts for the duration of my time on YouTube. Strike two.
Third time lucky? Let’s find out. He’s alone at the table again, and he’s put his phone away. I take another shot, and just as I get on, a woman comes through the lobby with a gaggle of little kids in tow. There must have been at least five of them, all under the age of 10. You know, the squeally years. Every step was punctuated by some overexcited little rugrat screeching at the top of his/her lungs. Strike three.
I know when I’m licked. I got off YouTube for good. The lobby was relatively quiet for the rest of my stay.
If you think that’s bad, here’s one that happened in McDonald’s. It was the off time, between lunch and dinner. I was in the back by the restrooms, all by myself. (The only electric outlet in the place is back by the men’s room.) I decided to watch a couple vids. I got onto YouTube. The second my video started some woman with a cell phone showed up and went striding back and forth the length of the back section, bitching about her boyfriend or husband or something. Whoever he was, she was majorly pissed at him and telling her friend all about it. Loudly.
This went on for at least ten minutes. Long before she wrapped up and left I’d abandoned YouTube and gone back to one of the silent sites. Some days you’re the windshield and some days you’re the bug.
This is one of the reasons I’ll eventually get home Internet, even though I know I’ll have to pay for it. The other reason is because the library’s content filter recently started blocking me from my publisher’s site because of “adult/unacceptable content.” Now I have to go to McDonald’s if I want to check my sales. The irony is, I can get all the free porn I want on the fan fiction sites, and the library lets that right through. They told me it’s a computer program doing this and they have no control over what HAL deems objectionable. How am I supposed to research M/M smut if the library won’t let me on the good sites? Now I’ll have to look at porn in Barnes and Noble or something. And how is your life going?