Car shopping and other nightmares

Minnesota, you are forcing my hand. What the heck is up with your roads?  I thought the roads in Sacramento were bad.  Uh, no. They are fancy and fine.

I’ve heard a saying that Midwesterners have…”There’s two seasons here. Winter and road construction.”

Really?  Have you seen your roads Minnesota? Holy crap.

Look at this road….LOOK AT IT!

StPaulMNPotholesI would say 85% of Saint Paul’s roads are similar to this one.  There is about a half mile of Snelling Avenue that isn’t too bad. Yes, you should gasp in horror. It’s awful.  Minneapolis isn’t that much better.

So, after the winter from hell we get potholes on parade.  My car really can’t take much more. The poor thing is 10 years old. It has 98,000 miles on it. It’s time to retire the old gal.

Now I am faced with what vehicle to purchase.  I’d much rather go to the dentist and the gynecologist on the same day.

After some research, it seems that all wheel drive would be best for shitty road conditions. Also known as ice and snow. Apparently, the sub-sub-sub zero temps are an anomaly, so I’m not going to take that factor into consideration when deciding on a vehicle.

Then there’s the whole financing research to fry my brain…oh and let’s not forget the fun negotiation that will inevitably happen. Good thing Paul & I watch lots of Pawn Stars to sharpen my haggling skills.

By the way, the first person who says something to me about cup holders and their importance to my car purchase decision, gets kicked in the groin area.

I’m more interested in shit that matters like reliability, gas mileage, and overall cost to own. Oh yeah and taking on potholes like a boss. I mean you see those photos. It’s not like you can dodge those suckers. It’s pretty much off road driving on a road.

Minnesota: The land of never ending winter?

MinnesotaWinterHumorYesterday, I had a mental breakdown. The drive home was so frightening that the moment I saw Paul, I burst into tears.  I was so happy to be alive and needed to relieve the pent up stress from white knuckle driving through downtown Minneapolis.

Honestly, why do you people live here? Do you not know California exists? I kept thinking to myself, “Why am I putting myself through this? Why is anyone driving? This is so dangerous.”

My first winter driving in slick conditions and it’s one of the worst the locals can remember. Also, I just hate driving in general.  Icy roads exacerbate my fears. It’s not the roads that scare me; it’s other people.  People are stupid and they drive.

Did I mention a bus slid past my car? Yes. A. Bus. A few inches to the right and I might not be writing this blog post.

So, my Beetle has to navigate along icy streets while I pray idiots in vehicles of varying size don’t kill me.

You know how people drive when it’s sunny and warm?  They do that when it’s -1 and icy snow is compacted beneath their tires.

Do you see that top photo?  That’s what the streets looked like last Saturday.  They still look like that on Tuesday.

I’ve reached my breaking point with this weather.  I worked from home today because I just couldn’t bring myself to get into the car.  I could feel a panic attack welling up inside me as I laid in bed trying to will myself to get out of it.

This craptastic weather is supposed to last for another week or two. Can someone please help me maintain my sanity?  I’ve thought about seeing a therapist, but I have a feeling it would go much like Sheldon talking to Leonard trying to overcome his stage fright. I would not be impressed.

The one and only time I’ve ever gone to a therapist, I remember thinking, “So, I’m not screwed up. This lady is pretty much giving me the same advice I’ve heard from my parents and my friends. I’m done here.”

I think my problem really stems from an overload of stress.  This winter is HIGHLY stressful to everyone.  Add to that planning a wedding, which I’m excited about, but is a stressor nonetheless.

Tomorrow the forecast is supposed to be god-awful again and driving conditions around the Twin Cities are not going to be improving. Paul’s class was canceled tonight “due to the impending weather” as he put it.

So, will winter ever end or have we entered another ice age?

Be back soon: Gone winter crazy

My first winter in Minnesota and it’s awful. Honestly, do you people know California exists? I now understand why people thought I was nuts for moving here.  Love does make you do crazy things.

I mean what the hell, Minnesota? Getting to the grocery store is a freaking chore. I’m not used to having my movements so restricted. I used to be annoyed by the rain.  What a fool I was.

The thought of going out to dinner exhausts me. Do you know how much effort that will take?

I’m tired of having to wear 5 layers of clothing just to ensure one of my extremities doesn’t fall off while getting out of the car. I’m tired of worrying that the oil in my car might be too frozen for it to turn on after a day of work. I’m tired of seeing the Wind Chill Advisory and a temperature well below zero as the high…THE HIGH!

When I was getting ready to move out here, I was worried about road conditions. Someone made a flippant comment about it not being the 1800s and not driving a wagon.

Um, dude. You have NO idea.

Snow blowing across the road makes me cringe. Ice on the road is frightening. I know now just how stupid people are in their cars.

My poor car has taken one hell of a beating….Not from the snow, but from the horrible potholes riddled throughout the streets of Saint Paul and even Minneapolis.  Sorry, dude, but my Beetle won’t roll over the 4 inch pothole as quickly as your SUV. Deal with it or tell your council member to get off his/her ass and fix the roads.

Speaking of…there are roads that don’t get plowed. I’m dead serious. They are side streets and have a giant layer of snowy ice lining them. How the people who live on them deal with that crap is beyond me.  I’d be the crazy lady dragging a giant bag of salt up and down the road, cussing the government the whole time.

How many more days until spring?  I keep day dreaming about it and summer, which is a clear sign I’ve lost my mind because I usually hate summer. Now I understand why it’s so much better.  You don’t have to be holed up in your house shaking your fist at the weather person. You can actually leave whenever you want or need. Ahhhhhh, the freedom.

All venting aside, I wouldn’t leave this place without Paul. Being able to laugh with him, snuggle with him and generally enjoy life with him does make all this crap worth it.  Besides, it won’t be winter forever, right?

Moving Chronicles: Drowning in boxes

moving, empty, cleanWhy do I have all of this stuff? Remember when my apartment was empty? I’m sure Paul does and wonders when in the hell it’s ever going to be clutter free again. I swear I’m having a mini-panic attack over the amount of crap piling up everywhere. I’m tempted to just chuck it all.

But then I actually open a box and find something I haven’t seen in two years. “Oh! I totally forgot I had this. Awesome!”

If I hadn’t gotten sick this week, I’d be further along in the process, and that kind of pisses me off. I hate getting sick. I don’t have time for it!

I just have to keep remembering that it took me a while to pack everything. It’s going to take me at least half that time to unpack it all. Plus, it’s good exercise, right?

My other problem is…where in the hell am I going to put it? I’m tired of shoving things into closets and just shutting the door. I want to have stuff that I use not that I think is interesting and might use one day.

I found a bunch of photos. PHOTOS. What in the hell do I do with those? Remember when people use to put them in albums? I found some of those too.

And my feng shui idea is giving me more anxiety than it is helping me get organized. I feel like all of the stuff I have is wrong. It’s all bad chi or will create bad chi if I put it in the wrong place.

Have I mentioned that I’m exhausted?

I need to stop being so hard on myself. I know why I have some of the crap I have. It’s not that I’m lazy. It’s just that I didn’t care about getting rid of it at the time…to paraphrase Office Space. At least, I’m getting rid of it now.

I just want to wave my hands and have all the clutter gone. Oooh. You know what would be great? Someone to give us an organization paradigm. Survey our apartment and furniture and recommend where to put what, what to toss, what to buy to help stay organized.

I used to dream of falling in love and being in a relationship with a wonderful man. Now that that dream has been accomplished, I want someone to organize the crap in our apartment.

Inappropriate Halloween Costumes: All new wrongness & Star Wars

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Sassy is another word for sexy in costume marketing speak

Why is it that costumes for females are all pretty much the same? I mean for little girls and young teens they are all cutesy. For grown women they are almost all sexy. I even saw a sexy clown costume…what part of a clown is sexy?!? I found it in the Party City circular we received in the mail this past weekend. OK, it says Cotton Candy Clown, but personally, all I can see are her pushed up blue boobs.

So, I’ve been trolling the internet for a female costume that is funny. I saw a Princess Leia for babies that was kind of funny. I mean it had a hat for her bun hairdo. And of course this “Tween Domo Costume” is pretty funny, but they are obviously marketing it to boys even though it’s fairly unisex if you ask me. I did find this peanut butter and jelly costume for two people is good. I mean two friends could be in this “couples” costume. Ugh. A couples costume for kids makes me want to vomit a little. Let’s call it a paired costume… Less sexual innuendo.

You might remember the Sexy (or Sassy) Big Bird disaster of 2010. Thank you for that nightmare, Target.

Now don’t get me wrong. It’s OK for girls’ costumes to be cutesy, but I really wish there was more funny marketed to little girls. I feel like Halloween has been over-sexualized. Is that a word? Regardless, by the time a female grows up and wants to wear a costume, it’s almost as bad as wearing a bathing suit, which in this day and age is mostly a bikini.

Speaking of sexualization…have you seen this Darth Vader costume for women…

This is the costume that sparked this year’s affront to Halloween. First and foremost, I love Star Wars, but this is just wrong. And then I found this Adult X-Wing Fighter Dress…DRESS! Yes, I’m pretty sure any women who were flying X-Wings to fight the oppression of the Empire were wearing DRESSES!

Yes, I know. It’s fiction, but that’s not the point. This is just wrong on so many levels for me. If you want to dress like an X-Wing fighter, wear the jumpsuit, not the dress. If you want to be someone sexy from the Star Wars world, Han is pretty hot in his vest and Leia wore that metal bikini after being captured by Jabba the Hutt. Those are the ONLY acceptable sexy Star Wars costumes.  But, why would you go straight to the sex with Star Wars anyway?!?

Vader is supposed to be frightening, imposing, not sexy. Oh, and they also have sexy Storm Troopers. What’s next? A sexy Chewbacca? A sexy Yoda? George Lucas, what have you done?!?

Public shaming in a public restroom

mobile phone on tableWhat the hell is wrong with people? Twice today…TWICE…when I was in the restroom, I heard a woman in the stall next to me talking ON THE PHONE!

I’m sure the person on the other end thoroughly enjoyed the sound of her urination and the flush of the toilet thereafter.

The sad part? This isn’t the first time I heard someone in that restroom on the phone.  I’m guessing it’s the same woman, but maybe it’s not.  Maybe this behavior is so wide spread and common that three separate women were chatting while relieving themselves.

Sanitary issues aside, it’s just rude.  Plus, YOU ARE NOT THAT BUSY. Hang up, put the phone in your pocket or purse and do your business in private.

The person on the other end of the phone might be too afraid or appalled to tell you this, but that’s disgusting. If it can be helped, no one wants to hear your bodily functions.

Let it be known, if I am talking to someone on the phone and I hear the sound of urination or a toilet flushing, I will gasp in disgust and hang up on you.

This behavior is unacceptable and needs to be stopped. Have some class and think about someone else for a moment. Do you want to hear your boss dropping a load in the toilet or taking a piss while discussing TPS reports? Do you think your sister wants to hear the flush of a toilet while you discuss her Percocet prescription?

The fact that an adult doesn’t inherently worry about something like that confounds me.  Didn’t your parents raise you better than that??

Gross. I’m also not even sure that woman (or women) washed their hands.

Man caves…can we just stop?

WoodYou know why I hate this term? The implication is that men are not as in charge of the things in the house as women. It also lends an air of a “clubhouse” where women are not welcome.

When, why, and how did this crap start? I know men used to have a den. I have no idea what went into those rooms. I think they might have been where TVs were kept in the 50s or smoking jackets were worn. Now it seems to be a place akin to a sports bar. Hello? I do enjoy a good sports bar! Who wouldn’t want a room with a fully stocked bar in it?

The thing is that modern couples shouldn’t need this weird separation of rooms. Granted it might be OK to divide up the home evenly and assign someone in charge of them, but men are just as capable in the kitchen and laundry room as women. I’m sick and tired of the media and commercials pushing this outdated notion that men are completely lost when it comes to domestic stuff.

I am completely lost when it comes to domestic stuff. Where’s my woman cave? Wait…don’t answer that.

Personally, I freak out about decorating rooms. First of all, I’m cheap. Yes, DIY, second hand, I know. I forget about that stuff. But, second of all, I get overwhelmed. What is my style? Comfortable, I guess. I like colors. Can someone please just teach me where to start??

By the way, I’m kind of messy. Well, I guess disorganized is more like it. I have more important things to do, you know like tweeting, blogging and overcoming my addiction to Candy Crush Saga. But I do like to rearrange furniture every now and again. Can someone also show me how to get organized??

And if men are going to have rooms of their own, where is my room and my fancy name for it? Don’t we all need an oasis? Don’t we all need an escape? I feel like I’m quoting song lyrics now.

If you are single guy and you call your entire home a man cave, that’s fine. Back in the day, they called it a bachelor pad and it wasn’t necessarily tricked out to trick women into bed. That’s just in the movies. It was just male-centric.

You know what would be great? A TV show that shows you how to decorate on a budget, that isn’t a competition or in a hurry and covers the basics of how to begin. Didn’t HGTV used to have stuff like that?