Saturday, December 31, 2011

New Year's Peeve

Greetings from Virginia! I will fill you in on my new life here later, with details about The Most Frustrating and Neverending Move Ever in the History of Relocations, The Magical Weight Loss Phenomenon and The Vague Job with Unavailable Boss (Through No Fault of Her Own). All you need to know at this moment is that

A) I love Richmond already.
B) My love life has already gone to shit, if you can believe it. Luckily, this has not impacted A (see above). Yet.

You may have noticed that it is almost 9pm on New Year's Eve. And I am blogging. In my jammies. Alone. What, did you think things would be different, now that I am out of horrible Savannah? That just because I am closer to my family and finally back where I feel at home that my romantic endeavors would be any different than they always have been? Or perhaps it's because last year's NYE was absolutely amazingly fun and awesome? Oh, my little naive readers. You know I can't let this year end without yet another crash-and-burn tale from my dating life, or lack thereof. Although I got down to the wire, I did manage to squeeze one final story into 2011 for you.

2011 started with a great dating story and it will end with another. Ok, I guess last year's NYE wasn't totally amazing and fun by the time it was over. But it most certainly started off that way, and it was a helluva lot better than the way this one is shaping up. Let me explain.

Thanks to the intervention of several friends and/or relatives, I was talked into (read: dragged kicking and screaming) signing up for eHarmony (emphasis on "harm") late last summer. Since you pay for it 3 months' at a time, I had completely forgotten that it would automatically renew itself, so after 3 months of guys who didn't even sound good on paper, I got to -- surprise! -- get automatically charged for another 3 months' of depressing dating prospects! Well, by the time I realized that this had happened, I was in the midst of leaving Savannah to move to Richmond. And they don't do refunds. So I had another 3 months' worth of prepaid virtual dating to burn through. Ever the Pollyanna/mental nimrod/glutton for punishment that I am when it comes to dating, I decided I would just update my eHarmony profile to list Richmond as my location and keep on trying. I am new in town. What else was I going to do with my free time?

Well, I was very pleasantly surprised, let me tell you. Not only were the men better looking in Richmond, but they were better educated, too, with more interesting jobs. Gone were the Savannah hipster bartenders who looked like they don't bathe and the desperate-for-any-female military men. (I do support our men in uniform, heck, my brother is a vet for pete's sake, but what is with their desperation to get girlfriends? It is seriously freaky. I wish they would work on that, collectively.) The guys in Richmond seem...pretty great, actually! Woo hoo!

There were a few that seemed pretty good, but one stood out above the rest. MM was just the right age, looked like he knew how to have a good time and was pretty good looking. I had looked at his profile about 3 times before I realized that in this one photo, there was a kid. He looked so good in the photo, I literally didn't even see the kid, who turns out to be one of his daughters. Yes, he has 2 daughters and an ex-wife. That's a decent amount of baggage, but I like kids and I am trying to be more open minded about stuff like that. I haven't been dating much lately (read: at all...for 2 years....). I just wanted someone who seemed like fun. So we started emailing, which progressed to texting.

He was great! He was flirtatious, funny and seemed interested in me. He asked me out and we booked a date. We were going to meet for dinner in The Fan, which is the old home/cool boutiques/best restaurants area of Richmond. I was pretty stoked. It was my first date in *ahem* over 2 years (except for the blind date where I was a cougar and we didn't really hit it off anyway, so I am not even going to link to that post). I had an outfit picked out and was kind of excited to do some in-person flirting with MM.

That is, until he canceled on me the day before. Something about work being really crazy and he had to work late on the night of our date. Ok, well, everyone deserves the benefit of the doubt, I thought. It's the holidays, and everyone is a little crazy right now. So we rescheduled. And then I cried a little, because I was so disappointed. Normally, I have a rule against dating guys who make me cry, but since this was a work thing, it wasn't his fault. So we ended up just texting for another week. (I began to get annoyed at the texting after a while...why not just call me? So much easier and less sketchy.) Things got very flirtatious, though. It's so easy to flirt via text...where was I?

Our first date went well...even though he was a little bit late. (Again, I try to give people the benefit of the doubt on first dates. They can be nerve-wracking. So I let it slide. He had texted me to say he was running a little late, so that helped.) The food was good and we had good conversation, but what was odd was the complete and total lack of flirting going on. And he was sitting a little farther away from me than I would have preferred. This, from the guy who, earlier in the week, was asking me some very PG-13 questions via my phone (some I would not even answer because they were a little too personal). This same guy, who had been talking up a big storm about kissing me, was acting like we were on a totally blind date. It was very odd.

He also did most of the talking, which is one of my first date pet peeves. I like a healthy split of getting to know each other, not the entire sordid story of why your marriage broke up. All I asked was how long he had been divorced. I didn't really need to know that she cheated and lied and all that other stuff. It's not really any of my business and made me a little uncomfortable.

I switched topics and asked him about his family. He describes his mother as "manipulative and controlling" and I could see a little red flag pop up. Now, anyone who knows me at all knows that my mother drives me nuts and I believe The Czarina to be a major control freak, but I would never describe her as manipulative, and I certainly wouldn't tell any of that to someone I just met. This, combined with his description of his ex-wife and a couple of bad dates he'd been on recently caused me to make a joke about how he'd bad mouth me later, too. He assured me I was a very pleasant surprise and that I was as attractive in person as I was in my photos. That was a relief. I decided that I would keep my ears peeled for more misogynistic comments, but the little things he said weren't instant deal breakers. For all I knew, it could have been nerves.

I decided to focus on how good looking he was and how good he smelled. And how to get him to sit closer to me. I decided to take off my jacket, exposing a black sequined top that was cut just low enough to be date-worthy, but not slutty. I could feel his eyes right where I wanted them to be. And although he did angle his body towards me a little more and put his arm on the back of the booth, his rear remained firmly in place...too far away for any serious flirting to take place. Rats. I guess that's what I got for telling him the he's not allowed to kiss me on our first date. Oh the joys of trying to pretend to be good when I really don't want to be..........

Our date got better as the night wore on. Aside from the comments about his mom and ex and my unsuccessful attempt to get him to scoot closer, it went well. It went so well that he asked me for a 2nd date just before hugging me goodbye. I was stoked.

Then, all this week, he went back to the vicious flirting and regular texting. I told him I was tired of texting and just wanted to talk, so he called me. After the phone call, he texted me to say how much he likes hearing my voice on the phone. He even asked my favorite question in the whole world: "When can I see you again?". *sigh* I love that question. At this point, I am thinking we are definitely having a super hot makeout session on Date #2. Even if I have to wear a super slut-tastic shirt this time. I can't take it anymore.

Two hours before he's supposed to pick me up for our second date, he texts me.

Would you be pissed if I asked you if we could reschedule for next week?

"If you have to ask that question, you already know the answer, douchebag," I thought. I texted back: So you're canceling on me again?

I am so sorry
, he replied.

At this point, I am about to punch a wall I am so pissed. I don't reply. When I get home from work, he texts me again: I am so sorry. If you don't ever want to talk to me again, I totally understand.

Now, I am not stupid. I know that if you really liked someone, you would never say that, out of fear they'd take you up on the idea. He wanted out, but didn't want to be the bad guy. This guy has really mastered texting. He uses it to say all sorts of things he doesn't have the balls to say in person. Despite texting me every day, despite all his little innuendos about sleeping with me, despite the compliments he gave me, despite asking me out a 2nd time...he wanted out. Why, I don't know. And I never will know. Because I replied with

Good. Because I don't.

The worst part was, he never replied to that text.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Homeward Bound

Interview was a little odd (they asked a couple of questions that were not typical questions). Not sure if I answered them all that well.

I was nervous, and forgot the names of the people interviewing me, so I was unable to send thank you notes to 3 of the 4 people. Luckily, the one name I did remember is the director of the museum library.

I had good feelings (but not great) about how I did.

Tried every day since then to not get my hopes up, dreading a rejection letter and being stuck here for another 6 months or something.

But all was for naught. I got the job!!!!!!!!!!

I start the Monday after Thanksgiving!!!!! I am SO EXCITED. But I think The Czarina may actually be more excited than I am. :)

More later....gotta run. Millions of things to do. Like tell my job I am quitting....they don't know yet! So those of you who know me on FB, keep this under wraps for the time being!

Monday, October 03, 2011

Carry Me Back to Old Virginia?

Y'all, my job hunt is on the move. I am on Mission: Richmond or Bust. After a lot of thinking and praying and research, I have decided that there isn't really anything my current job can do to keep me here in Savannah and that I am only interested in moving to Richmond, VA. I hate living in this town. I have met some great people, I love my apartment and I do like my job (most of the time), but my personal life here stinks. It's a vicious cycle of this town not having what I want, which puts me in a bad/depressed attitude, which makes me not want to work harder at making the best of this place.

I have recently had discussions with a couple of my best girlfriends here in Savannah and all 3 of us dislike living here. We all agree that there is a curse or some kind of oppressive atmosphere over this town. I thought it was just me, but when I mentioned it to them, they thought they were the only people thinking that, too! We all feel like we have become depressed ever since we have moved here. It's very odd.

This was a long blogging gap! Let's see what you have missed....oh, so my favorite coworker, the one who was running the other half of the library, quit. Her old job wooed her back -- and she would have been insane not to take the job. So I am temporarily running the whole library again, for no extra pay. My temporary boss did just get me a nice raise, though -- 4%. We usually only get 3%, so I appreciate that. We've also had another person quit (I'm telling you, it's like rats fleeing a flood around here), so now we have 4 vacancies to hire for. If I leave, too, that will be 5. And no one will be running the library. I do feel a little guilty about that....with all the craziness and absurdity of my job, I do like it. No job is perfect. But if only this job were somewhere else! There is nothing my current employer can do to make me love Savannah. It's a great place to visit, but not to live.

I counted up the # of people who have quit/been fired from the library since I started here 2 and a half years ago: 16. That is a LOT of turnover, especially when the staff is only about 20 people total. Luckily, many of the ineffective and bad employees are gone (save one, although if all goes well today, he will be getting fired this afternoon, after 6 YEARS of his antics). So if I already don't like living here, and no one else is staying, why should I stay? I have had 4 awesome awesome coworkers over the years here, and all 4 of them have quit. Honestly, I hate working here without them. That more than anything else has affected my morale. And The Czarina reminded me -- I have been trying to find a job in Richmond since I got back from Hong Kong. That was over a year ago. It's time to move on.

In other news, I took down my profile on eHarmony -- I am trying to leave this town, so dating now doesn't really factor into my plan. I may pick it up when/if I get to Richmond, although I don't think I will do eHarmony again -- they don't let you browse! Kind of frustrating. You have to wait for them to send you people.

Do you remember me talking about Miss Perfect who lives upstairs from me? She suddenly stopped talking to me. It happened after I told her I am a Christian. I think that made her uncomfortable. She asked me a bunch of questions about it and I told her that in the past I had claimed to be a Christian but was not really walking the walk. I told her how I am living my life now as opposed to a few years ago (or even a few months ago!) and I think she felt I was judging her or something. Which I'm not! I'm actually kind of envious of her ability to have guys sleep over....and not go to church....*sigh* Anyway, it did hurt my feelings, but at the same time, I didn't really see her becoming my best friend or anything, so I suppose it's for the best. She reminded me a little too much of my old roommate (the one who was bi-polar and would go on spending sprees even though she was broke). I thought we could at least hang out together, but I guess she doesn't agree. Oh well. I am taking it as another sign that it's time for me to move on.

The Ex-Fiance still lives here in Savannah. He still hangs out with all my friends, which is fine. It used to piss me off but I have gotten over it. He and I have just been avoiding each other. But he randomly messaged me on Facebook a few weeks ago and apologized for avoiding me and making things weird. I really appreciated that. So we have chatted a little via Facebook/text message, and I think we're cool now. It's all water under the bridge. He was dating a girl for a little while, and that made me happy for him, even though it didn't work out. He's even watching Sammy for me while I'm in Virginia later this week.

It was a long, boring summer for me, mostly because I was broke as a joke. My tenant (remember, I own a house in Columbia, SC) moved out in early May and I had no tenant....all summer....I just now have someone in there, which is awesome because I was dipping into savings to pay for rent AND mortgage all summer. Ouch! I literally bought nothing but groceries all summer long. No shopping, no vacations.

Now for the exciting part of this post! This post's title is a play on the state song of Virginia....which I am using because later this week, I have a job interview. I am pretty excited about it! It's a very well known art museum, and it would be an amazing place to work. I have been visiting that museum since I was a kid.

If I get it, it will be much less responsibility. I would miss being a supervisor, but I also think that I'm really burned out on my current job, and would welcome a slower pace so I can focus on my personal life more. It has really taken a back seat ever since I got here to Savannah. I am a little concerned, career-wise, about potentially going down the ladder, but if my personal life is more fulfilling, I may not care. And you never know -- moving up can happen anytime.

Another way this job would potentially affect my career is that it would be a 2nd art librarian job in a row. By focusing my career on such a tiny field (there are only about 300-400 art librarians in the U.S.), I am slightly worried that I may be putting myself in a box, essentially type casting myself. But this kind of organization would probably be easy to grow in (I read one of their annual reports and it says they are expecting a lot of people to retire over the next few years). And again, if I like my job, that won't matter!

The daughter of one of my mom's friends works there now and she said everyone there is very smart and super nice -- what more can you ask for in coworkers?? This museum has really become an icon of the city, and its success can only be due to the amazing employees there, so I would love to be a part of that!

The biggest boon would be, of course, moving to Richmond. I absolutely love Richmond and have always wanted to live there. I'd be close to my family and I know Richmond has all the stuff I am looking for in a city (I have been researching! I learned my lesson about moving here -- I did no research and just went with my emotional response to Savannah-- huge mistake.). One of the first red flags I got when I moved to Savannah was that no one here is from Savannah. That means they all get out ASAP. Richmond is not like that at all. You can't shake a stick without hitting a Richmond native -- I take that as a really good sign. I can see this being my -- gasp! -- last move.

I am trying not to count my chickens before they hatch or be overly confident about this, but I have a decent shot at getting this job. If you read the description of the requirements, I have every single one of extras. I would be taking a small pay cut, but nothing drastic. And again, if my personal life improves, it will be worth it.

The Czarina is, of course, ecstatic. She wants to have all of her "chickens" (that's what she calls all of her children) back in the roost, so to speak. I miss home, too. Now that my brother Fat Dog is married (yay! They ended up eloping to Hawaii and we are all very happy!) and my little sister Smurf is in college, I really want to be around family more. Even though The Czarina drives me nuts, I still love her.

The cherry on this little sundae I am whipping up is that The Czarina owns a condo right down the street from the museum -- a nice condo. That she will rent to me. And then I can walk to work and live in a super awesome neighborhood. WOOT!

So I'll be flying up for my interview on Wednesday. The interview is on Thursday morning. Wish me luck!

Oh, and if anyone has advice/good stories to share about moving down the ladder or taking jobs to enable you to focus on your personal life more, I would love to hear about it! Was it worth it? Do you have any regrets? Have you found it difficult to move back up the ladder later? The Czarina did it once and she (to this day) doesn't regret it. Although that might be because when she did it, she moved to Washington DC and met my dad. Of course it's easy for her to say she didn't regret it!

Monday, July 11, 2011

The 5 Ps

Wow, I haven't posted in a while. Let me see if I can sum up stuff:

Parenting -- The Czarina, a good friend of the family and my favorite aunt came down to visit me a few weeks ago. There was much shopping and laughing and dating advice (directed at me, of course). They all harped on me for being too picky and judgmental and for writing off guys before I even meet them. I countered with the fact that I refuse to settle and vow to keep my standards high. Therefore, no, I am not interested in flirting with guys who I can tell are not smart. I am tired of meeting cute guys who have nothing between their ears. I want someone who can stimulate me intellectually. They were baffled by this and can't believe I am not flirting like crazy with the hot (and yes, ok, they are hot) firemen across the street. But show me the fireman who can talk about politics, philosophy or anthropology! They don't exist! As soon as I make out with one, and my hormones get all stimulated, I will begin justifying all their flaws and end up in a dead end relationship. My mother and aunt disagreed completely and told me I was being judgmental. Am I? Probably. So I promised them I would try and be more open-minded.

Pressure -- We had a big re-org at work about 2 weeks ago. It was pretty crazy. The Gorilla got fired (thank goodness -- he was so toxic!). I know it sounds like I am taking pleasure from another's misfortune, and well, ok, I guess I am a little. Wrong, I know. But mostly, I am just relieved, as I'm sure he is. He was such a bad fit and he was miserable. So, this was really better for everyone. We also had to lay off one girl, which was NOT part of the original plan. We felt really badly about it. Now New Girl (my other half at work -- seriously, I love this girl) and I are working with a skeleton crew. It's going to be bumpy and stressful for a bit, but I think we will get there. There are a few people who now have totally new jobs and have to be trained from scratch -- so it's a little wonky at the moment. Luckily, there was minimal drama and most people are happy or they at least understand why we did what we did. Some people even got promotions, so that is good. Man, I am glad that is over. It was all I thought about for 2 months.

Peppy -- I have 2 new neighbors. One I will call Peppy. She lives across the hall from me and even though my coworkers call me Susie Sunshine, even I can barely handle this girl's too-happy and perky personality. She minors in performing arts, so she sings all the time. While she is a talented singer, it's kind of annoying. I sing when I'm alone, too, but quietly. This girl belts it out. And it's usually show tunes or cheesy romantic songs. Argh. As if this wasn't bad enough, she found a dog on the side of the road, and I'm worried she is going to keep it. This dog barks. And barks and barks and barks. Then it whines and whines and whines. Any time Peppy is not home or asleep, let the barking and whining begin. Kind of annoying. For some unexplainable reason, she thinks I am interested in being friends. Which is fine. But she found me on Facebook and friended me. What the heck?! I can't deny the request -- I will see her soon enough. I hate being pressured into being FB friends. (That goes for you, too, you weird cousin of mine!!!) Sorry, I have a weird cousin. I try to deny the friendship requests, but they keep coming. Luckily, he lives in South America, so it's a lot easier to deny him....sorry, now I am off-topic.

Miss Perfect -- I have another new neighbor who lives upstairs. I will call her Miss Perfect. Obviously, she is not perfect, but I certainly can't see any flaws: she looks like a supermodel (she doesn't even need to wear makeup, y'all, it's kind of sick), she's really in shape (triathalons are her main hobby -- what?!), her apartment is gorgeous (makes mine look like a dorm room) and she's smart (she has a PhD in Psychology). She has no debt, other than her car. Yeah. Oh, and did I mention that she is incredibly nice, friendly and has a fun personality? And that she thinks I am cool? Yeah. This girl is unreal. To make her even more awesome, she is my age AND single. Yeah. Believe it or not, this chick is single. Don't get me wrong, she has already met someone after living here for only 3 weeks. But she's not that into him. Something she can totally afford to do.

In short, she's the girl I hate to love. I hate her. But I can't, 'cause she's really nice and cool. So I have to admit that I like her. Even though I feel like I have just been slimed by the Envy Monster. *sigh* And my feelings of inadequacy are causing me to wonder why she wants to hang out with me. Because she's new in town and doesn't know anyone? Probably. I predict I will be friend-dumped as soon as she finds someone more worthy to hang out with. Wow, I am cynical today, aren't I?

My first inclination that she and I come from two different worlds was when I confessed to her that I have put on a lot of weight in the last few years, but that I was trying to make some changes and get back in shape (I first met her as I was coming back inside from a run). "Oh, I know what you mean. I am in love with junk food, too. Last week, I ate an ENTIRE watermelon. And that's basically just sugar." I was totally speechless. How many calories are in an entire watermelon? Like, 100? I decided to stay mum about my ability to eat two candy bars in one sitting, as I proved to myself a week ago. Wow. Talk about feeling like a loser. Who is this girl???

I'm trying to use her as inspiration. You see, she is super optimistic about her love life -- something that is very refreshing to my pessimistic, cynical view of the opposite sex. She is not giving up, but trying harder. She's one of those super goal-oriented people. And I have to admit, it's kind of awesome. "Ok, your goal is to get a date for this coming weekend," she said to me yesterday over coffee. "Um, yeah! Ok!" I replied, while thinking, "Yeah, right, lady. I'm overweight and my self-esteem isn't the greatest. I have essentially resigned myself to living alone for ever and wouldn't be able to attract Weird Al Yankovic right now." But somehow, she talked me into signing up for eHarmony. And I'm super broke right now (long story). But I did it anyway. This girl is not taking no for an answer. She wore me down. She's right. I can't give up. I have to keep trying.

Positive Attitude -- So, if nothing else, Miss Perfect is giving me a swift kick in my ass. Which is probably exactly what I need. Here's to hoping that some of her perfection and optimism rubs off on me. Let the games begin!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Getting Maui-d

Did I tell you my brother, Fat Dog, popped the question to his long-time girlfriend? Yup. On top of the Hoover Dam. He's an engineer, so I'm sure to him, this was a very romantic spot. He lucked out, because she said yes. We all adore her and so we are all very happy and excited.

For months, the happy couple has been trying to get the basics of their wedding plans established. Get married in Virginia Beach, where they both live? Get married in my hometown, which is super cheap? Get married this year or next year? They have been very indecisive. I'm sure The Czarina, starving for grandchildren, didn't help matters. She must have really ramped up the pressure when we all found out that the fiance is not 2 years older than him, like we had all thought, but TEN. (We never asked how old she was -- she looks fantastic for her age!)

Yesterday, Fat Dog called me to announce they have decided to have a destination wedding in 4 months. In Maui.

Most people would shout, "Hooray! Maui, here we come!" But there are some difficulties with this plan. In no particular order:

1. The Czarina does not fly. Period.
2. The Czarina, who is chipping in some money towards the wedding, is also paying for Smurf's college tuition right now. So she doesn't exactly have buckets of money laying around.
3. Based on my calculations, it will cost me something like $2,000 to attend this wedding. That will wipe out my savings, eat up the bonus I am going to get....I can go, but it will hurt. A lot.
4. My other two brothers live paycheck to paycheck, so they won't be able to go.
5. Smurf will be in the middle of Fall semester of her sophomore year, so she may not be able to go. Also, The Czarina would have to pay for her to go, too.
6. Banana, my older sister, is currently vacationing in Morocco, so she probably won't have any money left when she gets back.

"So, out of all the people you have called so far, how many said they can go?" I asked him.

"Um, none, actually," he replied.

"Are you prepared to have no guests at your wedding?" I asked.

Silence on his end. I wonder if he realizes that this may mean he gets few wedding gifts, but decide to keep that thought to myself.

"Look," he said, "this is what we are doing. We hope you guys can make it, cuz we would really like you to be there."


This particular sibling of mine is unique in our family in so many ways: he's good at math, he got Grandma's weird feet, he is stubborn to the point of absurdity and he has champagne tastes -- only the best for Fat Dog!

I can just about guess what happened. Fat Dog got sick of all the indecision, ran out of patience and decided that this is what they are doing, no matter the cost, logistics or inconvenience. I know how he operates. I'm sure his fiance is trying to get him to slow down and think about this some, and he is having none of it. (I wish I could say he is the only one in the family who is impatient, but unfortunately, yours truly has the patience of a toddler.)

The part that irritates me the most? His argument that this is cheaper than getting married in our hometown! "You can't get married for less than $10,000. You just can't," he said. Um, I am pretty sure you can. I actually just attended a wedding a few weeks ago that was very small, very fun and very inexpensive. But you see, Fat Dog has a tendency to require only the BEST in everything. Don't get me wrong, it's great to have standards, but a touch of reality is good, too. See, he knows he can get married for less than $10k. He just doesn't want to, because it won't be all fancy and impressive. If he can't have a Top Shelf wedding, he will just basically not have one at all -- which is pretty much what this is. It's just a glorified elopement. But since it's an elopement in Maui, it will still impress.

"So let me get this straight. You guys live at one beach, but you're going to fly aaaaall the way across the country to get married at another beach?" I asked.

"It's Maui," he replied. Touche.

"And how is this cheaper than getting married in our hometown?" I asked.

He was getting frustrated with me now. "Gah! Look, the only weekend we could get married in Farmville is at the end of May, and that's when the Heart of Virginia Festival is happening."

(Trying to get married in our hometown during Heart of Virginia would be daunting, I will agree. It's pretty much the busiest weekend of the year for our 3 little hotels in Farmville.)

"The Heart of Virginia Festival is in May. You just said this would be in September," I pointed out.

"We don't even live there!" he replied.

"Nor do you live in Maui," I observed.

Silence. Touche, brother dear! This was kinda fun! I was enjoying poking holes in all his arguments. I am such a mean older sister, aren't I? But this is what he gets for having such a selfish wedding plan, after we were all looking forward to this wedding.

"So why do you think it will save you money to do it this way?" I continued.

"Because if we get married in Virginia Beach or in Farmville, we will have to invite all these people. You know how it goes -- if you invite this person, then you have to invite that person, too. Soon, your guest list is out of control. We are just inviting family. No one else," he explained.

"Yeah, I know that can happen easily with guest lists," I admitted. That's why you cap it off, make some tough decisions and deal with it, I thought. I imagined the unruly guest list like an untamed Mustang, bucking my brother off its back. How absurd. Who is in charge here, you or your guest list? I thought.

I almost pointed out to him that if you don't have any guests at your wedding, you also don't have any wedding gifts. Wonder if Mr. Top Shelf has realized this.

"Can't you just get married in Farmville or Virginia Beach and then have your honeymoon in Maui?" I pleaded.

"No, cuz that will cost even more money!" he said.

He also argued that they are saving up for a big house, since they are planning to have kids. Is it just me, or should you have the kids first before doing that?? He owns a 2 bedroom condo already. I love that taking a trip to Maui is part of the plan to save money for this house. Is he serious? I can hear Dave Ramsey screaming now.

I got off the phone with him and called The Czarina.

"Are you upset about all of this?" I asked her.

My mother, in true emotionally-repressed, German-American fashion, replied, "I'm not upset. I'm just not going."

Oh boy. She was super pissed. I wondered if she hung up on him, but decided it would be best not to ask.

Upon discovering that she and I both thought he was crazy, and for the same reasons, she told me I shouldn't have said all the stuff I said. (I was supposed to repress it all, like she did!) She made me call him back and apologize. So I did. She was right -- it's his wedding. We should be supportive. We need to be happy that we love his fiance so much.

I'm trying to have a better attitude about this, but I am still kinda pissed. I think he's being really selfish and shallow. Just because he can't have a big Hollywood wedding (like he surely feels he deserves) he will just not have one at all. He's making the wedding all about him, when I think it should involve our families, too. (Maybe I am just crazy, but I thought I was welcoming a new member into our family!) After all, out of the last 4 times my entire family has gotten together, 3 of those times were for funerals. I was kind of looking forward to getting together with my family for a happy occasion for once.

The Czarina thinks they will still change their minds and I shouldn't get too upset. She will probably try and talk some sense into him after she calms down a little. (She would never admit it, but I'm pretty sure she is furious.)

I almost just wish they had run off to Vegas or City Hall and just not told anyone. Then we wouldn't all have to decide if we want to spend all this money -- it would already be a done deal.

I love my brother, but he sure can be a pain in the neck.

Sunday, May 22, 2011


The school where I work is no different than many other organizations around the country right now in that we are also feeling the financial pinch from our depressed economy. Layoffs have been happening periodically for months now. Why the administration has decided to drag it out and shroud it all in mystery is beyond me, and I am too far down the totem pole to change any of it. One of the ongoing frustrations with these layoffs and all the restructuring around here is that our HR department wields an immense amount of power. Rather than serving as advisers to our ideas and reacting to our needs, they control who stays, who goes, who gets what job and what pay. These decisions are made independently of anyone else, from what I have witnessed. All employees are at the mercy of the whims of HR, which makes them not only an intimidating presence on campus, but also a frustratingly clueless and cowardly one. This is wholly different than any HR department I have ever worked with in any other job. This is a school that is run by an HR department. Which makes no sense, really, if you think about it.

About 2 weeks ago, I met with my temporary dean (you may recall that my former dean quit a couple months back to be closer to her son in Atlanta) to discuss ongoing issues with The Gorilla, my professionally inept and socially sub-normal coworker. Due to my interim status as one of his supervisors, I have been lucky enough to get going on a mission to rid the staff of his presence, which has proven to be quite a morale-lowering experience. Part of this mission involved working with New Girl (the Gorilla's immediate and unfortunate supervisor) to reorganize the reporting structure at the library. According to our plan, we have determined a way to eliminate his position and shift others around to better suit the needs of the library. We even found ways to eliminate most of our part-time positions, which are currently held by students (who could easily find other jobs in restaurants or what have you). She and I were very proud of ourselves and brought this new idea to our temporary dean. She also seemed to really like it, as she has agreed with us from day one the The Gorilla has got to go. She said she would talk to HR about this plan and get back to us. She seemed confident that this would be a great plan and HR would go for it.

So when I went into her office, after she called a meeting with me to discuss things related to HR issues, I have to admit, I was kind of excited. After almost a year of The Gorilla, she was finally going to inform me with some pleasurable news of his impending departure. "The good news is," she started, "we are eliminating his position on June 6th." I silently turned several mental cartwheels, and had a quick parade in my brain, complete with confetti and handfuls of candy being thrown to little children, before snapping back to reality. The good news is? Oh no. That means....there is....oh no.

"The bad news is, they are eliminating your interim position, and so in this new plan..." she pulled out a new reporting structure tree for me to view. "You will go back to your old position. There won't be anyone in charge of the library until you get a new dean."

Seriously? This is so lame. I worked my butt off for this promotion! And now you are taking it away??

I asked if I had done something wrong or if I was not doing a good job (this was a rhetorical question, because I have actually been given a lot of positive feedback from both below and above me). She said no, not at all. She gave me some b.s. explanation which really doesn't add up. You see, our school has several campuses. Each campus has a Head Librarian for that campus. That is the promotion I received (temporarily). The Head Librarians are supervised by a dean, who oversees big picture planning and advocates for all of the libraries to upper administration. Since all deans are located in Savannah, their argument is that when we get a new dean, they can be both the Head Librarian and the dean for all campuses. Not only is this not what a dean does (at any school), it is too much for one person to manage. My former dean should know, because she had to do it for a year or so.

So much for their promise to me that my promotion was only interim because they didn't want to make any major personnel changes until we get a new dean. I am not quite sure how I feel about continuing to work for a place that breaks its word to its employees.

The problem with this plan is that we don't have a new dean yet. Nor will we have one any time soon, if they keep bringing in the same awful candidates they have been parading around for the last 3 months. So on June 6th (D-Day, ironically enough), no one will be in charge of my campus's library. There will be a group of department heads, who I assume will have to meet all the time to make decisions. (There are actually a plethora of logistical problems with this plan, and I won't bore you with details. Trust me, this is not going to be a smooth operation -- I am not just saying this because it is my promotion that is being eliminated. This is simply a stupid idea, put together by people who obviously have no idea how a library, let alone our library, works.)

Unfortunately for me and my coworkers, this was not the only change to the reporting structure. I was not the only person getting screwed over. New Girl would be losing The Gorilla, which was great. But she would be gaining the supervision for THREE other departments. Yes, I said three. I would like to mention that she was hired to be a one-person department and not supervise anyone. So this was most definitely not what she moved across the country for. I would also like to add that she does not have the experience or knowledge to supervise some of these departments very well. (Don't get me wrong, she is a rockstar librarian, but there are some library jobs that require an extremely specialized set of skills, and if you don't have them, you may as well be a baseball player trying to conduct an orchestra -- no offense to baseball players.) And it's not just that. The job she was hired for is plenty for one person to do, and she is doing it so well, and now she won't have time to do it very much. This will affect all of us.

Before all of this happened, we actually needed to hire 3 more librarians to be fully staffed. With their new structure, we will actually have 3 fewer librarians. We are essentially down 6 people. The whole library just got screwed. They can give me all their b.s. explanations, but I know it's really because of money and a lack of any attempt to understand how libraries work or what we need. With their new plan (which was nothing like the one New Girl and I created), they don't have to fill any of our vacancies except the dean's. They are combining and squishing so many things around, the currently vacant positions are going to be absorbed by others. They are going to be paying New Girl more, but at what cost? I will probably not be so lucky. I will get a bonus for the few months that I was in my promoted status, so that is cool. My office will also be free of The Gorilla, which is even better, actually.

This has felt comparable to grief for me. First, there was shock. They're not really doing this. That is crazy! They were just kicking this around as an idea. Then, sadness. Getting rid of The Gorilla is great, but this is going to lower our morale even more. I really like my new job, and I am going to miss it. The next day, I was seething with anger. They broke their promise to me! They took something away from me that I worked really hard for! And I'm good at it! They have no idea what they are doing and don't seem to care how this affects others! Late last week, I reached the negotiation stage. I can convince them that this won't work. I just have to prove it! But after my request to meet with my temporary dean was not acknowledged, reality set in. This is going to happen whether I like it or not. Nothing I can do or say will change it.

The thing that makes me the saddest is that now, there is nowhere for me to move up here. There is no Head Librarian position anymore. They are requiring the new dean to have a PhD (which is absurd, because very VERY few library deans have PhDs -- only library deans at major universities have them, and most of the other deans and faculty at this school do not have PhDs-- some don't even have masters degrees.) I am stuck being the head of my department. That's it. That's the end of the line for me. This school doesn't seem to care if I would like to advance my career here or if I get burned out. That is what upsets me about this the most. I think I could really make great things happen here. So do my coworkers. So do faculty I have talked to. But HR and upper administration don't seem to value that. They just want me to go back to being in charge of the busiest department in the library, where I will get burned out quickly. This promotion was really the only thing keeping me here. I have no choice but to begin looking for a new job elsewhere.

New Girl and I have been talking to and emailing our old boss about all of this. She is furious with our HR department and cannot believe what they are doing to us. She thinks they have wanted to do something like this for a long time and are taking advantage of us because we don't have a leader right now. We have no one to defend us to HR or upper administration.

Only one thing can save me. My old boss. The dean who left. She hates her new job and wants to come back and be our dean again. She even wrote a letter to our president to make her intentions formal and clear. The President and the other higher ups adore my old boss, and would like her to come back. But there are some negotiations they will have to work out. My old boss wants to stay in Atlanta. They will want her here in Savannah. Right now, they told her that if they don't find a new dean in the next couple of months, they will have her come back. If she gets to come back, but gets to stay in Atlanta, she will immediately advocate for me to get my promotion back -- permanently. Actually, knowing how much she likes me, she will advocate for me to get it back no matter where she is.

I wonder if I will still be here then.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Now Accepting Applications

WANTED: 100% single women, between 25-35 years of age, who live in Savannah, GA and are interested in participating in PG-13 level shenanigans with woman of similar mindset. Shenanigans may include, but are not limited to: laughing, dancing, happy hours, flirting with cute boys, making out with cute boys, shopping, brunch/coffee dates, talking on the phone, watching reruns of Sex and the City, getting pedicures. Hipsters and goody-two shoes need not apply. Preference given to former sorority girls who have experience in the aforementioned shenanigans.

Here it is, another Saturday night, and I am alone. Is it just me, or is making friends way more difficult after college? I think I have blogged about this before...I'll try and keep this brief.

St. Patty's Day is in full swing, and the city is crawling with fun, young people, and I am dying to be one of them. I want to laugh and flirt and dance...but instead, my only choices are to watch tv with my dog or be the weird girl who is out at a bar by herself. Stone cold sober, I might add, which makes fitting into the debauchery that much more difficult. (If anyone has mastered the art of going out alone, please teach me your ways!)

I believe there are 2 main contributing factors to my problem.

1. I keep moving around too much. It takes time to make good friends, and my favorite party buds are all in Columbia, SC right now. (They couldn't make it down here for St. Patty's Day)

2. I have not been making as much of an effort to make friends here in Savannah as I probably should. Don't get me wrong -- I love my coworkers and I love my Bible Study friends. But neither group is into doing what I'm into doing at the moment. I am not a hipster (like all my coworkers) and I definitely do not want a family-friendly, G-rated evening (like my Bible Study friends). I am envisioning a slightly tamer version of the frat parties I attended while in college. Where do sorority girls go when they grow up??? Oh yeah, they get married. Right. I sorta skipped that part. Note to self: get married so you don't care about frat parties any more.

I cannot be the last single, 30 year old (ok, ok, 32 year old) non-hipster in this town (seriously, y'all, Savannah is Hipster Central) who wants to snog with cute boys in dark corners and dance to hip hop songs with her girlfriends.

I'm too fratty for the hipsters and too bad girl for the BS crowd. Sometimes I feel like I live a double life. I can't really be myself around any of my friends.


I know there are girls out there like me. I just can't find them! Argh. So frustrating. To make matters worse, my own mother has a booming social life -- AND a boyfriend. Something about that doesn't seem quite right. She's always been super duper social butterfly, and I have always considered myself one to a lesser extent. Put me in a room full of talking people and I can hold my own -- even inter-generationally. For me, the hard part is finding the room. I know what to do when I get there!

Guys have it so much easier when it comes to this problem. "So, how do you like them Yankees?" is all they seem to need to become instant buds with someone. Girls aren't as open. I wish we would stop acting like that. Would it kill women to be a little bit friendlier? In this day and age, we need girlfriends more than ever. Why not invite the girl who complimented your shoes to sit with your friends at the bar? Why not introduce your group to the group next to you? Isn't it a "the more, the merrier" situation? What's with all the snarkiness and competition? That's got to be my least favorite thing about my gender. Why can't we just be cool and friendly? I should wear a shirt that says, "Trust me, I don't want your man. I just want to have brunch with you so we can recount the previous night's girly debauchery."

I'm kind of worried that I may have a touch of my dad's personality when it comes to friends. We used to tease him, because if you were to stick all of his friends into a room, it would be a random assortment of people -- very few of them would have anything in common. Luckily for him, he was much more comfortable being a loner than I am. Plus, it's hard to feel lonely when you have a wife and 7 kids. My dad would have a deep connection with each one of his friends, but only in one way. That's kind of how I am -- I have one friend for X, another friend for Y, a third friend for Z. I wish I could find a friend that covers the whole alphabet! Where are the Samantha, Charlotte and Mirandas to my Carrie? (Not that I'm a Carrie...I'm probably closer to Charlotte, actually.) My mom's friends are all whole-alphabet friends and they've known each other for like, 40 years-- ever since high school/college. This is incredible to me. I don't even talk to my college friends anymore, let alone high school. Then again, they are all in Chicago and married with babies, so really, what do we have in common? I feel I'm a completely different person now than I was then.

Anyway, no point in moping around about this. I need a plan of action. Time to join some clubs or start new activities. Or at least go to restaurants/bars I don't normally go to. And I have to force myself to talk to people with out fear -- otherwise, I will go into shy, silent mode. No one wants to hang out with Silent Girl. (This is one of the reasons why I always feel so comfortable around funny people -- they totally break the ice for me.)

Oh well. At least I won't get barfed on or have to deal with annoying drunk people tonight. And I won't wake up smelling like cigarettes. That makes me feel better.

Man, what I wouldn't give for one last frat party right now....and a wholly single (no hubby, no fiance, not even a boyfriend) non-hipster, non-Bible Study gal pal to go with!

Until then, I'll be singing along to this...which makes me giggle, so that helps!

Thanks for listening to my whining, as usual. I'll try not to be Pity Party Girl next time.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Cougars -- RAWRRRR!!!

So far, I am really liking my new position at work. I get to tackle problems I've always wanted to work on, help my coworkers do better at their jobs and learn how to manage people better. It's been great so far, and I'm getting a lot of positive feedback.

I'm just not getting any money for it. *grumble*

What they are going to do is give me a bonus when I'm no longer in this interim position. If the new Big Boss decides to officially give me my title, they will give me the bonus and also up my pay. If the new Big Boss decides to not give me the title, I will go back to my previous position and just get a bonus. Then I will immediately look for a new job, because hello! That's a pretty clear message. But I think I will hopefully get it. *knocks on wood* I'm not too upset about this situation, because I'm doing this more for the experience than the pay. I need this promotion on my resume.

I don't know when Big Boss's position will get filled, though. They are bringing in candidates left and right, but all we get to do is give them a tour -- we are not involved in the interview process. I am not a fan of this system, but it's out of my control. The odd thing is, our HR person randomly emailed one of my staff and asked them to sit in on one of the interviews (not all of them, just one of the interviews. As she is really new, this is really odd to both of us. She's trying to encourage HR to ask me to do it instead, as I'm the more logical person to be there (not to toot my own horn, but I am).

And I can't outright fire The Gorilla, but I can assure you I am all up in his beeswax! He was demoted and is now under the new girl, and he keeps telling her that he hates his job and "can't take it anymore" and is looking for a new job. HR told us that the next time he says it, we can consider it his verbal resignation and they will back us on it!

Alright, enough about work. Let's talk about something more my dating life. No, really, I honestly have an update! It turns out I am not dead! I had a blind date about a week ago. First date in a year and a half. WOOT! Backstory: I have a friend whose mission in life is to get me a man. I do not argue with this. She randomly calls me with potential guys in mind, and our conversations go like this:

Fixer-Upper: Hey, VB, what's your age limit on older m--
Me: None. Don't care.
Fixer-Upper: You're sure? Cuz he's--
Me: Don't care. Give him my number.
Fixer-Upper: Ok, cool! I'll tell him to call you.

I did veto a date with at 22 year old, mostly because that honestly just feels illegal. But I did say yes to one of her ideas, and so I messaged him on facebook. (You should be clapping right now, because I do NOT NOT NOT make first moves. But Fixer-Upper is the type of person who would nag me incessantly if I didn't do something to meet this guy, so I did it to get her off my back.)

Long story short, I was on a blind date the next night. Here are the stats: 26, tall, cute, works 3 jobs (one of which is being a fireman -- hawt), has a dog, former military guy (for some reason, military guys are always into me. Not sure why.), is a all in all, a good package. Also, he doesn't drink, which is a nice change of pace. I was more hung up on the age thing than he was. I have never dated someone this much younger than me. He was just starting middle school when I was in the 12th grade. It's kind of weird. Honestly, I would feel more comfortable with someone who has more life experience than me. Call me old-fashioned. He's very sweet, and we had good conversations and a decent amount of stuff in common, but I also kinda wish he was a little funnier and more cerebral. (WHERE are all the smart, funny, well-educated men in this world????) But he's a good person and cute enough to make out with, so I would probably give him another shot.

Although he told our mutual friend that he's into me, he hasn't called me. Fixer-Upper wants me to call him, but I refuse. I set up the first date. If he wants to see me again, he knows where to find me. *dusts off hands*

Meanwhile, St. Patty's Day is right around the corner. I don't know if I've mentioned it before, or if any of you have heard, but we have a MASSIVE St. Patty's Day festival here every year. It's the 2nd biggest east of the Mississippi. This is the day that the rest of Savannah's year pivots around. We even have a big countdown clock for it. (I highly recommend it, btw, because you can walk around with open containers here in Savannah and we have a ton of bars! You're all invited!)

The cool thing is, this year, for the first time, I live on the parade route!!! Although the parade starts at 10am, everyone starts drinking earlier than that. So I'm having all my friends over for snacks and parade-watching and beer drinking. I can't wait! Then, I'm going to another friend's house for a dinner-time cookout. Then I'll hit the bars -- hello, cute vacationing single men!!!! Just so you know, I am Irish!!!!

Speaking of cute, single vacationing men and St. Patty's Day, I texted New Year's Eve Guy to invite him to visit for St. Patty's Day. I figured, what do I have to lose, right? I thought he would not be into this idea or (worse) completely ignore my text, but that didn't happen. He said he can't go because he's attending another event this week, but he's definitely got Savannah on his wish list. Yes, he used the word "definitely". And I'm clinging to it!

I know I don't know him very well, but somehow, this guy totally got under my skin. Go ahead, laugh at me and my long-shot crushes. But there's just something about him that I am SO into. Probably because he's one of the funniest and most fun people I've ever met. *sigh* He's younger than me, too, although not by much. Did I mention he's super fun to make out with? *swoon*

Am I a cougar? Or some other feline species? Someone needs to set up an official, tiered system for cougars, snow leopards, cheetahs, et al. so I know what to call myself. This sounds like a job for Mystery.

In other cougar news, (yes, dear readers, there is more!) I was hanging out with my dad's ex-wife this past week (long story). She's 70 and looking for a place to retire. She wants to live in one of those all-inclusive resorts that have tennis, swimming, etc. She was telling me all about these complexes, and then she happened to mention that these retirement communities have major HIV epidemics in them!!!

Excuse me?

Well, it turns out that many of them are widowed, bored, popping Viagra like it's going out of style, not in the habit of using condoms, and so when you combine all of that together, you get...well, HIV problems. I didn't believe it until I did some research. Huh. Who knew.

I'm not one to end on a depressing note (I mean, who likes to think about Grandma humping her way through retirement? Not me, and I don't even have a grandma!) so I will leave you with one of my favorite MadTV clips. Lorraine was one of the first (and best!) cougars of all:

Friday, February 25, 2011

Movin' On Up

Hey Y'all --

Ok, it's gorgeous outside and I really want to go for a run before it gets too dark, but I had to post super quick. Updates:

1. Yes, I got the promotion!!!! YAY!!! Go me!!! I have worked my butt off for the last 2 years, and it's so nice to get recognized. I am technically "Interim", but I think it's because the school is broke and they don't want to have to pay me -- yes, I am still awaiting word on my compensation. But I will be compensated. Now that my Big Boss is gone (her last day was Wednesday), I am * gulp * in charge. So now I supervise like...20 people. This should be interesting.

2. Magically, my free internet is back!!!! This is soooo awesome, cuz I gotta pay my taxes.

3. Bought a new mattress today. I feel like a grown-up. I got a good deal and waited for a good sale and comparison shopped. I know new mattresses are not very exciting, but I have not been sleeping well for a while and considering my mattress is over 10 years old, I'm pretty sure that is playing a role. For some reason, mattress shopping was an intimidating process for me.

4. Mattress shopping got WAY more interesting today when I walked into the mattress store and was helped by a SUPER hot guy. Swoon! He could have sold me anything. I was a goner. But I stuck to my budget, so that's good. I should have asked if he was included in the price. Tee hee! Note to self: work on flirting skills.

5. Sunday is my birthday! YAY! I am turning *ahem* 22. Ok, not really. But just pretend that I am. I took today off to run errands (and buy mattresses from hot guys). Tomorrow I am going to an oyster roast and a baby shower, and the heading up to Columbia to party w/MJ for my Birthfest (as we like to call it). Hopefully, this will involve smooches with hotties. But I am mostly looking forward to MJ time -- we have lots to catch up on. She and I will go shopping on Sunday, and then my new mattress arrives on Monday morning.

So far, 2011 rocks. I can't wait to see more!!!!

Saturday, February 05, 2011


Y'all, I have had a terrible cold since Sunday. I feel much better today, but still have the remnants of a terrible TERRIBLE cough. The dry, itchy kind. Deep down in my lungs. This morning I awoke with very swollen glands under my jaw -- I know this is pretty typical after a cold, but it's freaking me out. I've never seen them this swollen before. If it's not better by Monday, I'm going to the doctor. Anyone know how to drain lymph nodes?

In more exciting news, I learned yesterday that my brother, Fat Dog, popped the question to his girlfriend of 3 years!!!! My whole family is in a tizzy, because we ADORE his girlfriend and we've been nagging him to marry this girl for at least a year. When I saw them at Christmas, I asked Fat Dog what he got her for Christmas. He said that he had to go to a conference in Las Vegas in February, and that he was taking her with him. "Wow, that took a lot of effort, you dumb jerk. Why don't you take the money you spend on her plane ticket and put it towards a ring, you idiot?" I thought. I didn't have to ask The Czarina if she felt the same way -- I could tell by the look on her face.

Little did we know, he had a grand master plan to take her on a tour of the Hoover Dam while they were there, and pop the question there! Yay!!! They are flying back from Vegas today, and I'm sure The Czarina will descend on them with all sorts of questions and ideas. I am so so SO excited and happy for them. I have spent the last 24 hours talking to various family members and we're all super happy. She is such a great girl, and they are so perfect together! In fact, I like her so much that I don't even mind that my younger brother is getting married before me. :)

I have some updates about the job here at work that I applied for a few weeks ago. Big Boss called me into her office the other day and gave me the scoop. She told me that she thinks I am the best candidate (SWEET!). But then she said, "I also have to tell you something that may change your mind about taking this position."

Oh boy. Now what?

"I am resigning," she said. "My last day will be February 23rd. So you may not want to take this position on, knowing that you won't have a supervisor to help you. I can give you a couple of days to think about this, but I will need to know your answer by Friday."

Big Boss then explained to me why she's resigning -- she got a divorce about a year or so ago, and now her son lives in Atlanta, and she wants to be closer to him, so she accepted a job at a school close to there.

"Can't you just keep your position and work from the Atlanta campus?" I asked.

"I asked, but since Savannah is our main campus, they need me here. Also, my ex's house is so far away from the Atlanta campus, I'd be commuting constantly and wouldn't see my son much more than I am now."

I could tell by the look on her face that this was a difficult decision she had made and was truly only doing it because she felt she had to. "I think you're making the right decision," I told her. "I need some time to think about this, but I can let you know on Friday how I feel about it."

My head spun with all kinds of questions -- how could I learn an entire new position in 3 weeks? Would I be expected to take on some of her duties, too, after she leaves, since I'd essentially be in charge of the library at the main campus? What if we don't get a new Big Boss for months? Since Big Boss's boss is retiring in the next few months, what happens then? How can I supervise The Gorilla without any help?

After thinking about it for the rest of the day, I began to realize some things:
1. It's going to be crazy for me whether Big Boss is here or not.
2. If I don't take this promotion, that puts all of us at risk for getting not just one bad boss, but two. Not to toot my own horn, but my coworkers (most of them) really like me, and I'd feel better knowing that I am at least 2nd in command around here. Also, if I take myself out of the running for this promotion, there will literally be no leader here when Big Boss leaves. That is not good -- several departments, about 20 or so people, with no supervisor??
3. I can handle it. I can work with the woman who has the similar position at our Atlanta campus. She and I have a good working relationship, and she can help me learn the ropes.

The next day, I went back into Big Boss's office and said, "I'm in. I still want it. I just have some questions..." She seemed relieved. We talked a little bit about how this will all go down, but we couldn't get too deep into anything because we both had a bunch of stuff to do, and we should really wait until I officially get the position. So she met with her boss and told him she wants me to get the job, and he agreed. It's been moved on to finalization by HR, so I am awaiting to hear from them.

Meanwhile, the days are ticking by and Big Boss and I haven't really met much -- which concerns me. I need training, I have lots of questions, we need to plan some stuff....luckily, she will be remaining on as a "consultant" until we fill her position. This is great, because it means I can still email and call her when I need help. She's been busy informing people across campus about her departure, dealing with The Gorilla and working on various big picture things (our budgets for next year were recently due, for example).

Big Boss is great, but she tends to have a one-track-mind. Right now, she is consumed with the news that The Woman Who Hates Everyone (WWHE) is going to be next on the list of layoffs around the school. I haven't mentioned WWHE much, because I basically avoid her. She's essentially the library's secretary, and she's pretty much evil incarnate. She is an angry, vindictive, sneaky, deceitful person. She should have been fired years ago, and for a million different reasons over the last couple of decades, but has always managed to weasel her way out of it via different legal strategies (our school is paranoid of lawsuits, and will do anything to avoid them). But apparently, her name is on the layoff list, so Big Boss is on the verge of a major celebration, as am I, because this would mean I would never have to supervise WWHE! As an extra added bonus, WWHE is the person who has been coaching The Gorilla, so if she's gone, he will not be able to work the system very well. The timing is great.

So slowly but surely, it looks like I will be getting this promotion. Hopefully soon I will know. A lot of my coworkers are really anxious about Big Boss's departure, because we have got to have someone steering this ship! Only a few people know that I applied for this job. I'm starting to get impatient, I have to admit. As tempting as it is, I am not going to put effort into a job I don't have yet -- especially before talking about what kind of a raise I will get!

I'm ready to commit to new responsibilities, to take on new challenges and run with them. I feel like a thoroughbred, in the gate, giddy as I wait for the pistol shot that tells me it's time to go.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Forks in the Road

Lately, everywhere I turn, I am faced with choices. Not just chocolate-or-vanilla choices. These are big, life-changing choices. I pride myself on being a decisive person (sometimes, too decisive...), but this sudden deluge is making me ponder my life on a grand scale.

My previous supervisor quit last September, which totally stunk. We all miss him. His position is still vacant, and I am qualified for it. He has been encouraging me to apply and has seemed disappointed that I haven't done so. After kicking this idea around for months, I just applied for it. Before doing so, I spoke with Big Boss about it, and she really liked the idea, especially since she was just told there's no money in the budget for her to fly potential candidates in for an interview. She also told me that she is really needing to fill it soon. I told her my concern with applying was that I'd be supervising The Gorilla (my awful, awful coworker). She told me that she had already been thinking about how to restructure the staff so a different person would supervise him -- this is a relief to me, but it means the new girl (who we all adore) would end up supervising him. This makes me feel like an asshole. How can I do that to someone? Big Boss said she had been planning on making this change before I talked to her, but I would still feel like a jerk. Then again, this new girl is probably the only one of us who doesn't have bad blood with him and the personality to handle him.

Big Boss said that if they don't let her actually hire someone (remember, we are still in financial cutbacks here at the moment), she may put me in it temporarily, which is fine -- it's still something I can put on my resume, and I can still ask for some extra money. I'm secretly crossing my fingers that the higher ups will tell her she's got to eliminate some positions, and then we can just get rid of The Gorilla!

Obviously, she cannot guarantee that I'll get it (I know she likes 2 other applicants who have applied), but based on her reaction to my interest (excited and relieved), I feel I stand a good chance. If I do get to cross this bridge, I would like to talk to Big Boss about creating some sort of hybrid thing for me until my position could be filled. I don't want to leave my staff hanging. We can barely function with 3 full time people. What would my staff think? It would mean a LOT more work for them if my position goes vacant, even for a couple of months.

So I am a little conflicted about my decision. I went ahead and did it because this step up the ladder would open up new positions for me for the rest of my career -- after a position like this, I could run any library, more or less. I am getting a little burned out in my current post, too. I'm ready for more responsibility and new duties. And just because I move up here at this school doesn't mean that I can't still look for jobs in Virginia. Might as well make some extra bucks while I'm figuring out how to get out of this town. So, I went for it. We'll see.

Of course, the next day, I found a super-awesome job at a museum in Richmond. I am fairly qualified for it, and I'm going to apply for that, too. I guess when it rains, it pours!

There are also some big choices in my dating life (er, lack thereof!). I don't talk about it much on here, but I am growing more religious as I get older. Maybe it's maturity or life experience, but I have come to find that prayer and attending church has added so much richness to my life. I recently started attending a church I really like, and I've been meeting with a Bible Study group for almost a year now. I absolutely love my Bible Study friends. It is the most supportive and wise group of girls I have ever met.

Last time we met, my Bible Study group talked about dating, sex and marriage -- and how to do these things in a Christian way. Our group is made up of single, dating and married women -- so there are lots of perspectives. One of the things that all the (happily, I might add) married women said was that none of them had sex with their husbands before marriage. Even if they weren't virgins when they met their hubbies, they did not have sex with them until their Honeymoon. Some of them didn't even kiss!!!

This is a completely foreign concept to me. I happily turned my V-card in about 10 years ago, and have never looked back. I don't regret it. I look forward to the next time I get to partake (in case you didn't realize that after reading about NYE Guy!). This is pretty much in direct conflict with how I'm supposed to be living. I haven't figured out how to reconcile "Being a Christian Girl" with "Major Enjoyment of Lotsa Sex with Non-Husbands" yet. But you know, we're all works in progress.

These married friends of mine all said that in addition to strengthening their faith, that this enabled their relationships to strengthen -- for the right reasons. They really got to know each other and their relationships had better priorities. While I totally see this, and can see how removing sex would enable you to really get to know someone better before marriage, I am just not sure if I could actually do it. I mean, I realize that I should probably *ahem* wait longer to jump in the sack with new guys, but the thought of ZERO sex(or even a little messin' around!) makes my face go pale and my stomach queasy. I'm not one of those people who thinks you have to sleep with someone before you marry them -- I'm one of those people who just REALLY likes sex. It's like someone is telling me to enjoy summer...without flipflops, ice cream or the beach. It sorta takes out some of the best parts about having a boyfriend! I guess I don't think it's that big of a deal to get my freak on and enjoy it. I'm sure if I was still a virgin, I'd think differently. But I know what I'd be missing out on.

But this strategy worked for them. Perhaps they are on to something. If I do abstain completely *gulp* with someone I'd really like to get to know, I'm sorry to say it would be for practical/secular reasons, rather than religious. I definitely agree it would force you to get to know that person very well. If I met someone who I could take seriously, I will try to wait as long as possible. But what about those guys you don't want to marry? I meet them a lot. Can't I have some fun?

And maybe it's just a coincidence that these girls didn't do it with their now-hubbies, which resulted in a marriage proposal. There are tons of couples out there who are happily married and boinked plenty of times before walking down the aisle. Right? I mean, looking back on it, all the sex (and it was good!) didn't stop me and Ex-Fiancee from getting to know each other/deciding if we were a good fit outside of the bedroom. The good sex didn't save our relationship.

I know this is a bridge I can cross when I get to it, but I've been thinking about it a lot. Then again, I think about boinking a lot in general. LOL Maybe it's good that I don't have a boyfriend or dating life right now. I gotta figure out some stuff.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

Bringing Sexy Back

Happy New Year!!!! I am so glad it's 2011. I don't know if it's because of my determination to get back to the old me or if it's because of my fabulous New Year's weekend, but I am so happy and optimistic about everything right now. I know this will be a great year. I can just feel it!!! Warm fuzzies, everyone. I am Suzie Effing Sunshine right now!!!!!!

Sorry, I will take it down a notch.

But I have super awesome news!!!! And I need your help.

You see, there is (drumroll, please) Boy News. And true to form, I either messed up or I just completely do not understand the opposite sex. Still. * sigh * I know. But where would this blog be, if it weren't for my dating/hook-up antics?

New Year's Eve was just going to be another VB-sits-on-her-couch type of weekend, until I began to miss MJ and remembered that Mr. Bill was having a party. And what is New Year's for if not hanging out with old friends? So I told them I would come up. MJ informs me that Rocky (a member of The Rat Pack, if you remember those posts -- if you don't know what I am talking about, you should search for these posts in my archives) was coming to SC for New Year's Eve.

And he was bringing a buddy of his.

"Anyone I know?" I asked, ever-so-innocently.

"Nope, this one's a new one," she said.

Hmmm. He will probably be cute. Or at least fun. Definitely worthy of leg-shaving, I thought, as I packed a "boobie shirt" to wear when we went out for New Year's. [Side note: does anyone else call them "boobie shirts"? Or is it just me?]

Rocky's friends are always cute and fun. I was starting to get a little excited about this. So I went to bed kind of excited for my short drive the next day.

I arrived in Columbia just in time for a late lunch with MJ, Rocky and his friend, who I will dub NYE Guy. NYE Guy was cute, and extremely funny, as I soon found out. Later, I would discover that he is also kind of geeky (he likes to go to museums!) -- <3 Swoon <3

I started to get that feeling that it was going to be a great weekend. WOOT!

After eating, we went back to MJ's house and hung out for a bit before getting ready for Mr. Bill's party. I put on my boobie shirt and slapped on some extra eyeliner and heels. What? What was that? I felt What a great feeling. It had been so long since I've felt that way. This feeling could best be described as the boring, depressed iceberg version of VB melting back into happy and exciting VB.

I was bringing sexy back.

So we head to Mr. Bill's. It was really great to see him, as well as a couple other people I knew. My only regret is that I didn't get a chance to talk to Mr. Bill as much as I wanted. So Mr. Bill, if you're reading this -- hi!!!! I spent most of my time at the party laughing with MJ, Rocky and NYE Guy, as well as a girl I will call "Other MJ" and her hilarious best friend who I will call Vietnam. We were our usual perverted selves, and there was a joke about empty beer bottles which even I cannot repeat. Hilarity and antics ensued, in other words.

Soon, it was almost time for the ball to drop. Rocky began asking everyone who they are kissing at midnight. I was sitting next to NYE Guy and when Rocky asked him, he turns to me and informs me that he wanted to kiss me. I giggled like a 12 year old. And so he did. And it was great.

Not long after, we all took the party to Art Bar, a fun bar in downtown Columbia. There was a masquerade theme happening there, so we had fun with all the masks laying around. NYE Guy and I kept sneaking away to dark corners to make out. Yay! So far, 2011 was rocking.

Fast forward to 4am, when I am still awake (!) and still in a good mood (!). But all good things must come to an end, and it was time to go home. So I drove MJ, Rocky, NYE Guy and Vietnam back to MJ's house. Shortly after that, NYE Guy and I are continuing our make-out session, and it was so much fun! He is so fun....sorry, I can't go into way to explain without being overly descriptive....ah, memories....where was I? Oh yes, so we didn't do anything R-rated or anything, but that was mostly due to the fact that it was 5am and we were exhausted! After messing around for a bit, he realized that we could just continue this the next night -- hooray for 3 day weekends!!! So we fell asleep....

...and picked up right where we left off in the morning when we woke up!

...but still did not *ahem* complete the transaction, if you get my drift. No worries. There was still another night to go! Yes. Best weekend ever.

He and I got up (at 1pm)and joined the others for food and then all 4 of us went to a museum. After that, we ate and then went back to MJ's to watch some movies. Soon, it was time for bed (YAY!) because the guys had to drive back to NYC the next day. I don't think I have ever been so excited to put on my jammies ever in my whole life. Especially with the hope that they would soon be removed by this yummy beefcake funny guy. So I get into bed while he's brushing his teeth. He climbs in and....

wants to spoon.




Ok, fine, I can meet him halfway, I thought. I nestled in closer to him. Nothing. I made a little moan. Nada. Time for something a little more obvious, I thought. I grabbed his hand and put it on my boob. "Awesome," he said.

And then he promptly fell asleep.

Ok, yes, I know he was probably tired, but so was I. And since when do guys pick sleep over sex? This was so lame. When he started snoring in my ear, I gave up and fell asleep.

The guys left very early the next morning, so I went back to bed after saying goodbye in my sleepy haze. No smooching, even. This is so lame, I thought as I fell asleep.

When I got up, MJ and I decided to get breakfast and get a pedicure to debrief on the night. When I told her about my end of things, she tried her best to help me figure out a reason for my rejection, but we are both at a loss as to why he just wanted to spoon the 2nd night.

By the end of the day, he had friended me on facebook. 3 days later, I messaged him to thank him for posting all the great photos he took from that night. He replied right away and told me that he doesn't like messaging on FB and that I should text him. Cool! I thought. Maybe there is more?

I didn't have time to text him then, so I texted him the next night. I wish I could say that we had a super hawt flirty conversation, but no. We ended up talking about the weather. Why would you ask a girl to text you, only to talk about the weather??? Plus, it was one of those conversations where I felt like I was interviewing him. Hello! Conversations require questions from both parties! It's called "getting to know someone". So I took this to mean that he didn't want to get to know me. He's just not that into me. I get it. Fine. Closure. Done.

But then he texted me last night! To talk about beer! Who is this guy??? Argh!

Please feel free to weigh in with your opinions, because I am thinking of re-naming this guy Mr. Mixed Signals. I invited him and Rocky down here for St. Patty's Day. I guess we will see if they come down. Do you think he likes me but he's just bad at flirting? Should I be more obvious w/flirty texts??? Who am I kidding. This is classic Just Not That Into Me.

It's good that I am blogging right now, because it is preventing me from messaging him on FB. Must. Fight. Temptation. MJ thinks I am reacting like this because I haven't met anyone in a long time and I'm just overreacting. I don't know. All I know is that I was not done making out with him!!!! And he makes me laugh. A lot. *sigh*

Alright, here's the part that is (almost as) cool. Ever since our little make-out sesh, I have felt like sex on a stick. I think I just needed some validation or to break the ice or something. I feel like I have come back to life! I am happy, I feel like a hot babe, I suddenly have all this confidence. It's wonderful! I should be slutty more often. ;)

Which brings me to my New Year's Resolution:
The be sexier.....and slightly sluttier.

This is the BEST resolution ever. Because it's a way more fun way to diet and exercise. I have managed to fool my brain into thinking this is fun. I am fully embracing the Hot Girl Lifestyle. And it's so much fun! I went for a run yesterday -- over a mile! And it was great! My whole goal is to never be home -- Hot Girls are out busy doing stuff and meeting people. Oh crap. Hot Girls also go to bed by this time of night....unless they are making out. I should go, y'all.

2011 is gonna be a great year. I can feel it.