Our new interim CEO starts today, and I am dressed in full on Business Formal for the occasion. I like to keep them guessing, so every now and then I’ll show up dressed like someone who actually knows what she’s doing (and knows better than to dress how I normally do). I figured “new CEO” was as good an excuse as any to play dress up – plus when I go back to normal tomorrow, it’ll be like a bonus. Surprise! Boobs!
Ed and I went to the PNE yesterday, courtesy of the passes I won from London Drugs. The day was overcast but dry, and we enjoyed ourselves before the crowds got to be too much. I went on a few other rides which was fun until I wanged my head really hard on a metal bar, which made me kind of dizzy. Unfortunately, I had to go on most rides by myself (which isn’t nearly as much fun) because Ed doesn’t do rides. I did get him on the Atmosfear with me, though – and it was SO MUCH FUN. I’d have ridden it all damn day if I could have (the lines were INSANE), and I’m trying to get some people to go to the PNE with me later this week so I can do it again. I tried to take some pictures while we were up there, but it was scary high and I was afraid of dropping my phone – next time I’ll rig something up for added safety (and maybe not stick my finger in front of the lens).
We ate corn dogs, I bought the traditional Fair Fudge (which will sit in the fridge uneaten for 8 months before it finally gets thrown out), and I bought the world’s coolest iPhone case in the market. We made our way through the crowds and walked home, pleased with our lazy Monday at the fair.
We left the house on Friday around 9:30 – a little later than intended, but not at all concerned about it. We were feeling strangely lethargic about the entire weekend; something we attributed to a lack of sleep and caffeine. We loaded up the Mazdabator, made a quick pitstop for delicious pretzel buns, and hit the road.
The border was surprisingly busy for a Friday morning, and it took us over an hour to get through. I convinced Ed it would be an excellent idea to stop at Target in Bellingham so we could pee but mostly so I could do a quick run through the store to pick up some American essentials. In addition to my Diet Coke, I also got new headphones and a poncho and .. this:
“Big deal”, you sez. “You have one of these already!” Well, not exactly:
Ed spotted him on a shelf in Target, and I squealed – it’s AWESOME AND SO BIG. He takes up an entire shelf on my recently cleaned Ikea Expedit, and those shelves are not petite. It’s completely ridiculous, but I love it – it almost fills the gaping hole in my living room where my gay porn used to be (it got relocated to the bedroom; I’m trying to make Ed gay by osmosis). Beaming with delight and an empty bladder, we piled back into the car and continued our journey south.
The plan was to stop at Doug and Ali’s to drop off our bags and then head downtown to PAX, but we arrived in Kenmore just as rush hour was starting and quickly determined that it would take us several hours to make our way through traffic. We decided to stay at the house and hang out with friends instead, reasoning that there wasn’t anything we were dying to see on Friday night (I’ve long since given up on my dream of actually seeing a PAX concert) and the house was cozy, filled with delicious foods and people, and we were really very lazy. I got to have Christmas at Ali’s (opening three months of Amazon shipments I had sent to her place instead of paying extra to ship to Canada), Hazel shared all her toys and drool with me, and there were BBQ’d meats made of deliciousness. It was Kid Movie Night at the house, so Ed and I excused ourselves to tackle the next Must Do on my weekend list: hit up the Lego Store in Bellevue Square and try to find TOMS Wrap Boots at Nordstrom. I struck out on the boots (which is really annoying – I need to try them on before I can order them, but they don’t appear to be in store anywhere in Canada), had a grand time in the Lego store, and discovered my new true love: Nutter Butter Blizzards at Dairy Queen. Holy SHIT those things are amazing – I could eat twenty of them, except a) they’re only in the US until this Wednesday and b) Nutter Butters aren’t available in Canada. Still, I enjoyed the fuck out of the one I had, and promptly went to Safeway to buy a bag of Nutter Butters to bring home with me. Do you think if I took them to DQ they’d stick them in ice cream for me? PEANUT BUTTER IS AWESOME!
We went back to the house after the guests had left and the kids put to bed, and sat around in near silence in the living room playing Words with Friends (add me: Drunk Bettie). I had been resisting WwF all this time, but finally caved in and bought it and promptly started a half dozen games with various people. Planning to PAX it up to the fullest in the morning, we turned in and got some sleep.
We were up and watered and out the door by 9:30, and were at PAX after some fancy parking by 11am. We went to pick our lanyards in the receiving room, and I was really annoyed to learn they had run out of swag bags. Keep in mind that this was 11am on day 2, and they had already run out even though all passes had been sold in advance – what’s up with that. I didn’t necessarily want the swag for myself (I give 90% of what I get to my coworker who can’t go to PAX), I still like picking through it and seeing what’s inside so that kind of sucked. We hit the show floor and wandered around the exhibits for several hours, trying some games and looking at nerds. Some of the things I’m looking forward to:
So .. a lot, but mostly indie or small company games. As usual, my refusal to stand in line kept me away from the larger booths, but there was still a lot to look at and I got my hands on quite a few different games on the floor.
Then came the waiting.
Ed wanted me to see the Acquisitions Inc panel with him, so we left the convention center to go over to the Paramount a couple blocks away. We were alarmed to see the size of the line that had formed with almost three hours to go before the thing even started, but we got in line to secure our spot. It was here that PAX was the most insufferable it’s ever been – standing in the hot sun for 3 hours with no shade, no drinks, nothing to sit on, and surrounded by obnoxious nerds who WOULDN’T STOP FARTING. Don’t get me wrong – I fucking love nerds – but I have to draw the line somewhere, and my line comes up long before you get to the bottom of the barrel nerds: the gargantuan, the unfortunate, the spastically awkward, the “I HAVE AN OPINION ABOUT THIS POPULAR THING AND YOU WILL HEAR IT”, the glommers, those who can’t hold their goddamn farts in when standing in a line several thousand people deep – those. I can’t get with those. Maybe it was my foul mood at the line I was standing in, or how much my feet hurt, or the fact that I was just not into PAX at ALL this year, but I really did not want to be in that line with those smelly awkward jackasses braying stupid catchphrases all around me for multiple hours. I was even pissed at my fellow nerd sisters, all of whom seemed to fall into two categories: those who used “cosplay” as an excuse to dress like a complete whore for attention, and those who were female versions of the farting disasters mentioned above. Yeah, I’m no prize myself, but I didn’t show up to a game convention in a completely unrelated-to-anything corset, and I don’t fart in public .. so I win, really.
The panel was funny, but I was far more interested in the building itself – the Paramount Theatre is fucking GORGEOUS. I spent most of my time looking around me in awe (and rolling my eyes at people behind us who repeated every.single.joke. to one another loudly when they weren’t eating bag after bag of Crinkle Time Happy Crunch Flakes) and taking pictures like this:
By the time the panel had ended before 6, we were exhausted and starving so we decided to leave downtown. We drove around for a bit, “accidentally” finding ourselves at Archie McPhee before going to Red Mill for a fantastic burger dinner eaten outside in the glorious Seattle evening. We made our way back to Kenmore to hang out with an assortment of Suttleses, and discussed the day and our plans for Sunday: we were done.
This year, we spent one day at PAX – maybe 7 hours worth, and most of that standing in line. We skipped both Friday AND Sunday even though we had a 3-day pass, and couldn’t figure out why we were feeling so very, very “meh” about the whole thing. I have a theory, though – the end of August snuck up on us, and we were utterly unprepared for the event. Between my scooter troubles and London planning, I had pretty much forgotten that PAX was coming until it was the night we were supposed to leave for Seattle and we were in no way ready to go. I hadn’t done a lick of reading – had no idea what panels were going on, events, parties, concerts, who would be there – nothing. I was completely out of the PAX Loop, and it came across as complete apathy for what was happening around me (as well as some rage: STOP FARTING). This was our third PAX in a row, and it’s gotten bigger each year .. and this year, it felt as though there were simultaneous too much going on and too little. Things everywhere were making me cranky, from the booth babes that weren’t supposed to be there (oh, you’re “media” – well, that explains your skin tight cat suit and assless chaps) to the terrible, terrible booth shoutcasting that wasn’t done by Marcus and could have been done so much better by me (seriously, give me a call next year – I’d be happy to not suck for anyone wanting live game coverage at their booth). We were both tired and .. just not into it, I guess. We completely dropped the PAX ball this year, and while I’m definitely going to PAX12 next year, I’m going to actually do some prep work so I have a great deal more fun than I did this time around. And maybe I’ll wear a corset just to a) fit in and b) show them how it’s supposed to be done. Heh.
Once again, the three things I look for at PAX were not there: a booth for Jet Set Radio Future Future, a section in the Squenix booth for The World Ends With You Again, and anything Katamari related. So, I will try again next year. I have not yet given up hope, even if it wavered a little at PAX 11.
Home now! Good weekend, but not in a way we had anticipated. More words coming later; I’ve got a date with some cats and laundry. Hooray!
(title is a lyric from ‘dimitri mendeleev’ by astronautalis – give it a listen here)
My week has been extremely tiring, but I don’t want to complain anymore. I’ve been louder about the bad than the good, and that’s a depressing way to live – so in the spirit of being the person I want to be, here is the awesome side of things that have happened this week:
Stay beautiful, everyone!
I called the store at 10 this morning to ask about my warranty, and was told the owner of the shop would call me back to talk about it. I waited until 4:20 when my patience finally expired, and I called them back.
As explained to me by the head mechanic, the warranty I have was a deal offered through Costco Canada and an organization that has since gone out of business. Since the other company is dead, they are not honouring the warranties because it means they don’t get paid. My “only option” is to go to Costco Canada and demand they pay my repair bill, since it was their deal in the first place.
I’ve asked Ed for help, and he is making some phone calls. I feel sick to my stomach, because I was positively elated that my prudence of 2009 was going to pay off in my favour. I can’t believe I was just told “yeah, sorry, this is all on you” when I did everything right, and I’m baffled that the shop’s lack of being paid for repair work done under warranty is somehow my problem.
Will update as more information is available – here’s hoping that Ed and his ability to handle shit like this calmly and rationally can come through in our favour.
Here’s the page I have in my paperwork outlining the deal I bought:
close to after midnight* and something evil’s lurking in the dark – me, actually. Hi there.
As I was laying in bed trying really hard to fall asleep, a nagging thought kept poking me in the back of the head. It’s been almost two weeks since I dropped Lola off at the shop, and I’ve spent every other second of that time stressing the fuck out. I just dropped a large wad of cash on an Impromptu European Adventure, and I had no idea a) how much this repair was going to cost and b) how I was going to pay for it. Sure, I could easily stick the entire painful bill on mister credit card, but that wouldn’t really solve anything – just defer it at a rate of 11% per month for a while. I’ve got some money set aside for London Incidentals (which is the name of my Clash cover band), but if I use that money wisely and put it towards Lola’s repair, I will be broke on my trip. I was wrestling with my desire for spending money in the UK versus being a Responsible Adult when a Sneaking Suspicion entered my head and wouldn’t leave: the warranty on my scooter. There was something special about it, but WHAT?
I thought harder, and vaguely remembered some of the many
fights conversations I had with Ed surrounding Lola’s purchase. When I make a seemingly ridiculous decision to do something crazy, I tend to a) have done a great deal more research than it appears, and b) do a lot of fast talking to get my way. I had repeatedly told Ed that buying Lola at that instant in time made perfect and magical sense for a variety of reasons, including ……………
Holy shit, one of the reasons was an extended fucking warranty.
Well, there went my hopes of sleep. I got out of bed and padded into the living room and started to pull all the paperwork down off the shelf. I made it through two magazine racks full of stuff we probably don’t need to have any more when I hit pay dirt: the bill of sale for my scooter, and all the corresponding paperwork including the pages I had printed outlining the special add-on bonus available during May and June of 2009: $200 towards a helmet, $50 towards a pair of gloves, a $50 Costco gift card, and a two-year extended warranty that was an extension of the 1-year warranty the scooter came with.
Lola is under warranty until June 16th, 2012.
I vibrated with excitement and demanded Twitter play along to see if I was on the right track with this exciting new theory that my valve seal replacement shouldn’t cost me a fucking cent. Not satisfied with that, I even woke Ed up to run the new developments by him. He was 80% asleep and likely didn’t fully get what I was going on about, but he grumpily agreed with my assessment. All that was left to do was to go the fuck back to sleep some how and wait until morning when I could call the shop to demand an update on Lola and to inquire about my findings. I was cautiously optimistic, because everything I found lent proof to my favour – I had receipts, time stamped print outs, DEFINITIONS even – this had to work. It had to! It was all right there in black and white and yellow and red: 3-year warranty! The same warranty that saved my ass last year during the Great Gasket Failure of 2010 was STILL VALID, and therefore HAD to cover my ass for 2011′s Valve Seal Gate!
As of right now, I don’t know. I’m waiting for the shop owner to call me back, and when I phoned this morning the guy who answered my call said a) my scooter is being worked on today and might be ready this afternoon if all goes according to plan, and b) the extended warranty was offered under the old distributor and he’s not sure how it plays out now. I’m squirmy with stress and restless anticipation, because I NEED this to go my way. Besides, I don’t give a flying fig about distributors; I’ve got signed paperwork with proof of my extended warranty. Are places allowed to do that? Cancel something bought and paid for because something changed in the back end of the business?
Between the stress of this repair and losing all my naked pictures, I’m completely keyed up and twitchy. I hope everything is positively resolved and soon – I have to come up with 151 synonyms for the word “employee”, and I can’t do that if I’m too worried to concentrate.
(*: I started writing this update at 12:30 this morning, so I am technically correct – the best kind of correct)
It’s dead, Jim.
On Sunday night, I turned off my iMac because things were dangerously hot to the touch. Unfortunately, the next morning it wouldn’t boot. I started by unplugging peripherals, and eventually narrowed down the problem to my 500GB LaCie external HD – it was dead. Before panicking, I did a little research online and found that the most likely culprit was the power supply, so I ransacked the house but was unable to find a similar power cable due to the weird-ass configuration of the connector. Refusing to cave in to reality, I set the drive aside to bring into the office hoping that Desktop Support would be able to help me.
This morning I told my sob story to IT Keith, who forced open the casing and connected the SATA drive to his PC. Windows happily read the data, and I was elated – all my music files, pictures, articles, resumes, websites and more for the past 10 years could be rescued! He started transferring the information to my network drive, and I’d be able to transfer it back over to my computer later. Hooray!
Unfortunately, the transfer was taking too long and IT Keith needed his computer back to do actual work. He gave me the drive back and said he’d rig me up a system so I could transfer the info over later. This was cool; I’d still get my stuff back including our wedding pictures and tax returns. I could be patient.
Then the other IT guy arrived, and he brought with him two power supplies that fit my drive. Hooray! We plugged in the first one, but it wasn’t watty enough and it didn’t work. The second was 62w (I needed 57w), so it should be cool.
*smoke and burning*
Um, shit. We quickly unplugged everything before fire could happen, and set about to finding another solution. He took the drive back to his desk to try a hard drive reading toaster and/or his own PC, where he could copy the files and I could retrieve them later.
.. except that pop and sizzle kind of killed the drive for real this time, and it will. not. be. read. by anything we’ve tried. It’s completely, utterly, horribly dead and my data long gone unless I want to pay $600-$1500 to use a data recovery service (which I clearly cannot do). Instead of grabbing the data when I could, or asking if I could just transfer over the truly important stuff, or waiting until I had a PC available to use, we actually killed the drive dead when it was working just fine only minutes before.
I’m trying hard not to think about it, because I have a minor panic attack when I think about what I just lost. Losing all my music is annoying, but I can probably recover most of it. Losing all my written work, IRC logs, websites, pictures – that’s the heartbreaking part. Pictures of Sasha, of my dad, of friends long since grown apart. Images from our wedding and honeymoon, from Ed’s grandparents 50th anniversary, of my snails. My first website, written entirely in humiliating Comic Sans and HTML’d by hand in Notepad. All gone.
It’s beyond heartbreaking to lose all those memories – it’s actually going to cost me my livelihood. You see, I basically grew up online in the infancy of the internet – in 1997, we were doing things so sordid and naked that if they took place today, the devastation caused by moral panic, Fox News and Nancy Grace would spell the end of online life as we know it. Since my very first step online with a 1200bps modem, I’d been storing chat logs, screenshots and pictures away in a secret folder for blackmail purposes. The logs aren’t all that useful anymore; it’s too easy to fake them and a lot is lost in the translation – but the pictures! I have – had – naked pictures of dozens of people, some of whom have gone on to become responsible members of society with jobs and mortgages and cell phones of their own. I had always assumed – counted on, really – that one day I’d shake this annoying tendency to not be an enormous asshole and start threatening to release the information I’d saved unless they funded my cushy lifestyle of no pants and Diet Coke. All my retirement plans just went up in a puff of smoke, and I am utterly desolate and wrought with despair at the loss.
To make me feel better, please email pictures of your genitals to kimli at delicious juice dot com.
OH FUCK – I just realized that I’ve also lost the ICQ log of the conversation Ed and I had the very first time we chatted online, in which he asked me if I’d ever have sex with five guys at once. I’d been planning on suing him for breach of contract, with that as Exhibit A. SHIT! This is SO MANY KIND OF SUCK! I am a sad.
I got a locket today. I asked Twitter what I should put inside the locket, and these were the suggestions I received:
@ginallama and @peechie wanted guinea pigs and Justin Bieber; @stepc suggested DNA and drugs (it’s a DNA helix and chemical composition of cocaine); @hessiebell asked for a glitter pug and @sattlerkm wanted a picture of Ed’s wang, and @chrisbrett had the best idea: peanut butter on one side and jelly on the other.
You people are WEIRD. :)