Wednesday, May 30, 2012

My ramble about moving away.....someday

By no means am I too stupid or too romantic to think that if I moved away (say, to Denver) that my life would change forever for the good.  I would not immediately find a husband, a great job, get out of debt, get healthier.
I know these things.

About seven years ago, I considered a move.  A big one.  I was offered a job in Florida, not long after I called off my wedding.  My parents were delighted, VonDad most of all. He offered to buy me a computer and a plane ticket home every Christmas.  Pretty sure VonMom had visions of me exercising on the beach, eating only fruits, veggies, and fresh seafood.  Either way, they were pretty pumped.  I was too. A little scared, but pretty much set on my course.
Then, VonDad got sick.  It wasn't much, not life-threatening, and I realized that this big move I had planned would take me away from here, from my family forever.  That I was making a permanent change.
I didn't sleep for weeks, and finally I called the wonderful man who had offered me the job.  I explained my position, and ultimately turned down the job.  He was so gracious about the whole thing.  He even told me that he respected me for thinking things all the way through.

I put my wanderlust and all thoughts of moving away on a shelf.

Then, VonDad passed away.

Not long after, VonMom said that she knows deep down that someday I will leave, and it will be permanent.  I told her she's probably right.  It's a known fact that I stayed here for my dad, and really no one else.

Again, I don't have stars in my eyes.  If I give it any serious thought, I get all nervous and my stomach gets all clenchy.

Then, I went to Denver, for the second time.

I know that I would be riding the coat tails of all of the things that C has already done.  His friends would become my friends, and for a while at least - his social life would be my social life.

I also know (for a fact), that I would look completely different than I do now.  I'd have purple or blue or pink hair (all of it, not just streaks that I can hide).  I'd have at least a dozen more tattoos.  I'd wear all of the fun rocker grrrl jewelry I own.  I'd get to wear my pink tights, and fun dresses.
I know all of these things because I could practically taste them when I was there. 

I've always known that I stifle all of the creative things I want to do with my appearance here.  There are very few people here who get it (who get ME, actually), that would understand that that is how I truly feel I should look, that is how I'd be most comfortable in my own skin.  My family and (many if not most of my) friends would look at me like I lost my marbles.  Certain members of my family would yell at me, and try to shame me back down to "normal".

I know that this is no one's fault by mine.  I made choices and decisions along the way in life that have brought me to where I am now.  To have the job I have, I do have to follow certain standards of dress, and this does include my hair color.  I choose to keep my tattoos coverable (for now), because I expect to get a certain level of employment, and I do feel that people are unfairly judged by things like number of earrings and tattoos in general. 
Knowing that I did this to myself, knowing that I have to stay like this for a long while still, this does not make the itch go away.  My first tattoo was 20 years ago now.  I have not, and likely never will, lose the desire to get more.  I have the next three already planned out.  I just have not had the time nor the money to go get them done.

Don't worry, dear reader - I am clearly not going anywhere any time soon.  I refuse to move away from here until I have my stupid debts paid down - if not completely then at least significantly.  I also will not move without some cash in the bank.  I'd rather not go without a job lined up.

Oh, and that's the major current hang up - believe it or not, I LOVE both of my jobs.  I really do.  My day job feels like it was made just for me, and I am so proud of all I have built up at it.  Plus, I work for the most amazing company I am likely to ever work for, and I would never throw that away.  My other job I campaigned and prayed and hoped for for longer than I care to admit.  And I have only had that job for about a year.  There is no way that I am ready to walk away from it.  I may find something similar to it, or something else in music, but I will never have these wonderful people again.

I'm not making excuses.  I'm just laying it out there, like I always do, for your reading pleasure.

I'd love to go. Someday. I don't see myself in Chicago in 10 years.  My four most likely towns are: Denver, Portland, Seattle, Boston.  These aren't in any order, and strangely I have never been to Portland or Seattle, I just have a feeling.

But, for now, dear readers, you're stuck with me.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

A.D. (after Denver)

There isn't a whole lot to say about the fourth day in Denver.
We went up up up another mountain to Golden, to see Buffalo Bill's grave.
C took the scary windy way, and I got a little sick.
The end.

Ok, now I have a whole post to write about how I felt when I got home.  How I felt for almost a whole week.
For the second time in my life, I gave some very serious thought to moving away from Chicago.

------------------------to be continued-------------------------

Friday, May 25, 2012

Denver, Day 3

I woke up around 8. Then 9. Then 10.
I waited until 10:15, then hearing nothing, I went upstairs to see what C was up to.
He was up to.....sleeping.
So, I did what any good house guest would do, I jumped on him.
"Get up! Get up! Get up! Entertain me!"
He tried to throw me off, but this was not happening.

"What are we doing today?!?!"
"GF had an idea - she said we should go see the Stanley Hotel. You know, the haunted one, from The Shining."
"Yes! We should!  Is she coming with us?"
"Nooooo. She's still messed up about screwing up with you last night, and she's going to need all day to gear up to see you again later at the BBQ."

We decided to go to this hot dog joint - Uber Sausage for breakfast.  I had my first ever bison dog - it was amazing.  C had some sort of bratwurst thing.  They had homemade chips with 12 different seasoning salts you can top them with.  So delicious.

Headed up to Estes Park.  It was a lovely drive the whole way, and we did some more catching up.  I got a classy farmer's tan on my right arm.  Up up up we go, and we're there!!
Big spooky hotel.
With a haunted tour that starts in 5 minutes.
We hustle off to buy our tickets and join the group.  Our tour guide was a nerd, but a cute one, and we were excited.
"C! Let's play Ghost Hunters!"
"The whole tour?"
It was a 90 minute tour that started out a little more history than scary.  Then things changed.
On the landing of the grand staircase, I felt a creepy chill across the back of my neck and right shoulder.  A moment later the guide stated that there is no air conditioning in any common areas of the hotel.  Aaaaaand it was hot and muggy that day.  I didn't mention it to C.

On the fourth floor (the most haunted floor), we stopped as a group by a door. The guide asked for a volunteer to stand against the door.  Once in a while, when someone does that, there will be a knocking from the other side of the door.  He opened the door to show us that there was a wall behind the door that went almost to the floor - not enough room for someone to be standing on the other side to knock.  Whatever.  We rolled our eyes.  The group moved on, and I told C to stand against the door....
"bang bang bang!" and C was flying off the door.  I, of course, decided he was me, that he had knocked on the door.  He swore up and down that he didn't.  I still did not believe him.
A little later on the tour, we were in a long hallway and all of the sudden, C whips his head around to look behind him.  He almost spins around in a circle.  He investigates the bottom of his shirt.  I ignore him.  Not a minute later, the guide tells the story how the hallway is known for the ghosts of children running around and tugging on people's pants and shirts.  C swears this happened too.
I don't know whether or not to believe him, but it was fun either way.
After the tour we were wandering around outside, and C found a statue of a bear, laying on it's back.  This is when C straddled the bear and said "Take my picture!"  I did.  Ahhh, C, the same as always.
We mortified a couple of people with this, so we decided it was time to go.  On the way back to the car, we spotted an eagle.  I looooove birds of prey of all kinds, so I just kinda stood there, watching this gigantic thing soaring around. 

Headed back to Denver, to go to a BBQ at one of C's friend's houses.  GF is there waiting for us.  To her credit, she was (mostly) sober, and seemingly contrite.  We ended up having a blast there.  We watched the eclipse, saw some cobag staple band fliers to his head.  I counted rainbow hair colors and tattoos.  I stood next to an incredibly tall marijuana plant.  Turns out all of the people at the BBQ were in bands.  I was surprised at how well they all got along.  Not something I think I'd see here at home.  I was handed a sticker with the greatest witty band name I've ever heard on it - The Cattle Axe (say it out loud, I'll wait) - which is going on my car.
We decided to go back to C's house to have some drinks.  GF was also coming. 
Back when C called to tell me he was getting divorced, I had sent him a flask filled with the best Scotch I own - Jura single malt 16 year.  He had saved it for when we could drink it together.  He brought out that flask, a bottle of Colorado Whiskey, and some beers.  C, GF and I sat around eating really bad Denver pizza, drinking and chatting.  It was the perfect evening, actually.  Also found out that evening that GF is looking for a job, and hopes to go out of state, likely NC or ME.  NOW I think she is ok! If this "relationship" has an end date, I can deal with it a while longer.......

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Denver Day 2

Then, things got a little ugly.....

C had to go to work on Saturday. This, I knew.  It was agreed that I would do whatever I wanted until he got home from work.  Which could include staying at the house and relaxing.
Since we got home around 3am, and since I drank A LOT, I decided to sleep in.
11:30, I wake up to C's ex wife SuperBitch standing over me.  Backstory - the whole reason I went to Denver was to check on C, because his wife, SuperBitch cheated on him.  They are stuck kinda sharing the house until they can sell it in November.  I hate SuperBitch for what she did to C. SuperBitch teaches piano out of the house on Saturdays.
"Um. Von? I need to know what you are going to do today. My classes end about 2:45, and I'm going to need you out of the house after that. I don't want you in the house when no one is here...."
"SuperBitch? If I wanted your shit, I'd guy buy it at Walmart and Claire's and Hot Topic.....I wouldn't bother to steal it from you...."
"I, um....:"
"Let me text C, see what's up."
I text C, he immediately calls me, then immediately calls her. I decide I don't want to deal with the drama, so I jump in the shower.  While I'm drying off, there's a knock at the door:
"**sniff sniff** Von? Can I talk to you for a minute?**blows nose**
"Well, I'm naked,but whatever...."
"No! NO, just come upstairs when you have a second...."
Grumble,sigh, fuck me....
I get dressed and head upstairs.  Pounding headache, hunger pangs and all....

For the next HOUR, SB tries to convince me that she never cheated on C.  That he was terrorizing her.  All lies and b.s.  She sobbed and sobbed and sobbed.
I'll save you the details. Suffice to say, I let down the nice shield, and gave her the business.  Some of my better statements:
"You really don't know how hard it is for me to not climb over this table and beat the shit out of you, do you?"
"Friends? We were never friends. I don't do friends who are unbelievable sluts"
"Please, SB, give me a reason to hit you"
"You are a heinous bitch. The worst part is, everyone knows what you did, yet you still continue to lie about it.  This makes you pathetic."
After an hour of this, I told her I was going to go for a walk and to get something to eat. I made her promise she'd be there when I got back.  Ok, well, it went more like this "God help you if you lock me out, and C has to leave work early to come let me in...."
I went for a walk. I found Taco Bell (God loves me!!!).  I checked my phone.  C had called 9 times.  I called him back.  Apparently he had visions of me pinning SB to the floor by the throat and punching her in the face repeatedly.  I assured him that this did not happen, and would fill him in on everything later.
Got back to the house, SB was there, just standing in the middle of the living room.  I walked past her and went down to the basement.  She followed me down and said
"Well, I guess I will never see you or talk to you again..." more tears
She left, I slept.

Saturday evening was a whole lot of plans.  First C and I went to get something to eat, and to catch up.  I told him all of my business, he judged me, forgave me, and we moved on. 
Went to a nicer bar/restaurant for his friend's 30th birthday party.  Of course, she thought I was hilarious and awesome, and offered to take me out on Monday.  LOVED HER.
Of course, she is NOT the girl C is dating now.

Off to meet C's girlfriend.  Drama part two coming up!! Can you just feel it?!?
We went to this amazing venue called The Gothic Theater to see a band that C knows.  - They're called Nautilus, check them out -
C finds GF and walks up to her.  GF is HAMMERED and wants to make out with C.  Did I mention, GF is hammered?  She's slurring and trying to say Hi, but it's not happening.
I go to the bathroom and have a little talk with myself.  It went like this:
'Von. Calm down. You are 10 years older than this little shit.  You already had a lengthy fight with SB today.  Time to try to be nice again, m'kay?'

I walk over to the bar, where GF is leaning with her friend.  I smile and offer to buy them beers.
GF spins around to look at me, glares at me, says "Who ARE you?!?" and kinda falls over.  Her friend looks at me all 'I'm sorry!' and waves me off.
Yep. Fuck it. I'm finished.

I walk back over to C.  He says "So?"
"Well, the BAND was great!!"
"What does that mean?"
"GF, she's wasted, I'm not down.  Baaaaad first impression."
C immediately get pissed at me, says "What, she can't get drunk?"
I say fuck it, and go sit down.  I didn't figure that was the time or the place to tell him about the "beer incident"
Apparently, GF's friend decided to tell him.  He asked me why I didn't tell him.  I ignored him and drank myself silly.
Drama drama drama, GF is coherent enough to know that she messed up with me, big time.  There's tears (Von makes people cry out of state too!!), and C putting her in someone's car and sending her home.  He's now not mad at me at all, and kinda embarrassed.  We watch another band - Black Lamb look them up too - and leave.
We then went over to the bar he works at, Bender's, and I'm obsessed with that place.  The people are awesome, it's huge, and I'm pretty sure if I lived there I'd be at Bender's just about every night.
Evening saved.
1:30ish, head home, time for bed........

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Denver - Day 1

I had such an amazing fantastic drama-filled time in Colorado, I'm making it a mini-series of blog posts.

Day 1

Got to Denver no problems.  It's hot as Hades, and I'm a little nervous as no actual "plan" was made on where C was going to pick me up.  I headed out to the American arrivals area (I only had to ask one person for directions) and waited.
Up pulled C - all speeding and slamming on the brakes and grinning.
There was a gigantic long hug, and then we were off.
C had to go back to work for the afternoon, so we agreed he'd drop me off downtown.

He dropped me off near 16th Street Mall.  I wandered around looking for something to eat, and ultimately ended up at the Hard Rock Cafe - don't judge, they had air conditioning and inside seating available.  I ordered up a very large beverage and some snacks and then another very large beverage or two.

After I was full and tipsy, I headed back out.  I found this free shuttle bus thingy that takes you all up and down 16th Street. I rode it's full length twice, and made note of some places I wanted to go.  I lept off at the Money Museum, giddy with the notion that they would give me some $$.  No such luck.  Wandered around some more, found the Aveda Institute.  While I was getting a manicure, I mulled over the idea of getting a burgundy stripe in my hair.  Decided I didn't have time that day, but would return on Saturday to do it.


C called and asked me to meet him "Up the Capital" and gave me some vague cross streets. 
I only had to ask two people how to get there.  I guess "Up the Capital" means up the very steep hill to the Actual Capital. 

We headed over to his band mate's house to load up for the show that night.  I walk in to this lovely house only to be met by the largest dog I have ever seen in my life - Dakota, the super sized Great Dane.  Dakota was busy eating a cow or something when we walked in, so he ignored me.  Only later, after he sized me up and figured out what a sucker I am for canines, did we make friends.  And by make friends I mean Dakota thought it would be awesome to sit on my lap.  I couldn't breathe for a while there, but it was ok.

We headed up to Fort Collins in the Band Van - I felt  Anyway, sitting in the band van, having some beers, getting to know C's band.  Awesome.

Get to Ft Collins, have my first ever Five Guys burger.  Um, yes, please - I will have to find the nearest FG in Chicago.  Go back over to Road 34 Bike Shop - This is a bicycle shop / deli / bar / music venue - I shit you not. 
Anyway, head back over there, see C's band play.  They were pretty good, considering the piss-poor sound tech and that it was the drummer's first show with them.  Beers were DIRT cheap, I mean dirt cheap.  Got my drink on, then got stuck at the bar until the very end.  C and I were a little annoyed we had to stay that late, so we sent each other text messages mocking not only the closing band, but also the other bar patrons.  Oh, we were standing next to each other while we were texting!
Headed back to Denver, finally got to C's house around 3:30 am.

I could already tell, this was going to be one kick ass weekend......

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Uh oh


Or, as I've begun calling it, NATOggedon.  Remember Snowmaggedon Chicagoans? This is like that, but longer and more annoying.

My train? Packed.  Wicked packed. Wussy suburbanites who can't sit their precious asses in traffic have started infiltrating my mode of transportation.  OH AND on Monday there are all these horrendous rules for the trains - no backpacks, no bottles of water, no food, no bag bigger than this x this, no breathing, no talking, no nothing at all!

My walking around downtown land? Awful - trust fund baby "protesters" with their $500 designer pre-torn up jeans, iPhones, Bulgari watches and look-at-me-I'm-bad-ass faux-hawks aplenty.  I'd really like to ask just one of them if they can fully explain to me what they are protesting, but I don't have the time or bail money......

My office building?  Still the least secure building in the entire downtown area.  Their idea of "enhanced safety measures" include laminated badges that a 2nd grader with some free time can duplicate (no photo, no bar code, nothing), a thin nylon thing that prevents you from going up a flight of stairs, a security dude outside "walking the perimeter" (which translates to ogling chicks).  Yep, I feel so safe now!! And from who? Protesters? Terrorists? Not quite sure on that one.

The lazy people at work, the ones who beg for a snow day the second the flurries start, have begun their campaigns to work from home Friday and Monday.  Mmm hmmm  - I am SO sure that you will be actually working! In the safety of your living room, with your kids climbing all over you, your t.v. on, etc.  You're right! You are totally trying this b.s. for your own well-being!

Everyone who does not live in the Chicagoland area - please stop asking me about NATO.  I don't have an inside track on it, I am not an expert on any NATO related topic, and honestly I could care less.

Oh, and guess what!?!?!?  Y'all know how incredibly smart I am, right?
Yours truly is FLYING OUT OF CHICAGO ON FRIDAY AND BACK IN ON MONDAY. Yep, that was the brightest decision I've made all year!!! O'Hare airport, in the middle of NATO traveling traffic.  Lucky me.  At least that should make for some interesting blogging next week......

Friday, May 11, 2012

Good deed

My good deeds do not come cheap.
I try to be kind to strangers, but typically when I do, something bites me in the ass.
So, I've kinda stopped doing it.

Unless something like today happens.

This morning on the train, there was this woman sitting in the seat in front of me.  She's very pretty, put together, quiet.  I usually do not pay her any mind.
Today, though, she started having major allergy issues.  Sneezing, coughing, etc.
I said "God bless you", but tried to ignore the rest.
So, all of this was happening as we are getting close to the station, so the aisle was full of people.  I noticed this dude kept looking over at the sneezing lady.  Finally she gave him the look of death and put up her hands like "What!?!?!?"
He quickly looked away and turned red.
She sighed.
I tapped her on the shoulder and gave her a brand new packet of tissues.
She tried to take one and give them back to me, I told her to keep them.

She thanked me a bunch of times before getting off the train.

Silently, I thanked her in my head for providing this morning's amusement.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Why did I get weepy at guitar graduation?

First, we played this:

Then, another class played this:
 And then I kinda lost it.
Damn song lyrics, get me every time.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Bad advertising, with the bad attitude

All over my train station, there are these ads.
They have sullen, angry looking kids with their arms crossed staring out at you.
The tag line? "Where is the Love?"

The ads are supposed to convince me to foster these poor children.

Um, WHY do I want a sullen, cross-armed angry young person living in my home?

Oh, I see - there's this kid getting arrested.  There's another sleeping on a park bench.  And another waiting on school steps.

I see - they are trying to guilt me in to fostering these poor souls.  That part might have worked.  The part that turns me off, though, is the main image.

These kids look like they will stab you with your own kitchen knives.

No thanks.

Advertising fail.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Because I know you

See, I know you are all smarter than me, this has been proven time and time again....


A friend/coworker of mine is leaving. Her last day is tomorrow  She's been here 12 years, and was one of the first people who was really nice to me when I got here.
So, for a little over a week now, we've been sending each other videos that are relevant to the situation.
Songs about goodbyes, songs about leaving jobs, etc.

Tomorrow being her last day, I need a song that is EPIC.  It has to be so relevant, and get a laugh, and be a little bitter sweet.  But mostly get a laugh.

So, help??

Leave your suggestions in the comments. 

Oh, and to sweeten the deal (I'm not above bribery), the winning entrant will get a prize.*  No, an awesome prize, I promise.

SO have at it.......

*A picture of boobs.  Sorry, joking. I could not help it.  Wink and nod to my lady friends on that one.

POST SCRIPT - you all lose, and you all suck.  I went with Scandal and White Lion.

no prizes for you

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Important Fridge Note:

For those of you close by, or very inspired to travel to Chicago(land area):

Hello Bloggy Friends!
There is going to be a get together something or other on Friday, May 25th.
I think Brando might be afraid of the inappropriate stories I might assail him with if it was just us....
So, It's open to all who lurk  read here.
Let's get together, have a drink or twelve, and have an amazing time that may or may not end up as a witty story on someone or other's blog.

Location TBD, likely somewhere around NW side Chicago(ish).
I have a comfy couch that I'm willing to have someone crash on, if they feel like driving in.....from, say, Wisconsin.....

Let me know if you're interested.