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Author Topic: The Cat Room  (Read 135322 times)

September 01, 2017, 11:41:20 PM
Reply #420

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #420 on: September 01, 2017, 11:41:20 PM »
The chill pill did its job.  Last night I got a great night’s sleep.  James volunteering to sleep on the couch didn’t hurt.  I’m really hoping for a repeat tonight because I’ve felt like a wet rag since getting home this afternoon.

The trip to Portland for my interview took longer than it should have.  I have no idea why.  There was no sign of excess traffic on the road, and anyway, that wouldn’t have accounted for the slowness of the light rail.  Still, I was glad I got my butt out of bed in time to catch the first bus before the one that would normally have gotten me through my connections barely on time.  As it was, I arrived 25 minutes early, but that’s better than five minutes late, and there was a perfectly nice ground-floor lobby where I sat until I couldn’t stand it any more.

The interview went well, I think.  At least I got plenty of positive remarks in response to my answers to the interviewer’s questions.  It was a disappointment, if not a surprise, that the job description he gave me did not match the one in the job posting.  When, oh, when will people figure out that they’ll get better, more appropriate candidates if they advertise for the right thing?  Anyway, they have a month to get their act together and put a working group together before they want the group to start.  I do hope they make up their collective mind sooner rather than later.

Before I set out for home, I went to the liquor store I remembered from previous visits to that area.  I found a pretty back way through from where the interview happened.  It involved taking a chance because part of the way was foot traffic only, and my map of downtown Portland does not show those paths.  I had been running low on vodka.  Now I’m not.

Then came the trip from hell.  By then the light rail was running fine.  The bus across the river?  Not even close.  It’s supposed to run every ten minutes, but even after we waited at least twenty minutes, the driver who finally showed up insisted that we had to wait another ten minutes.  Which turned into fifteen because of some nonsense between him and the driver of the next bus, who arrived before our waiting period was over.  And then there was traffic.  Long story short, it took me almost three hours for what would normally have been a trip of half that.

Oh – I almost forgot the other less-than-fun part of the trip home.  I was minding my own business, sitting with my eyes closed in a corner seat beside the space intended for people with bicycles to hold them, when something hit me in the side of the thigh.  Hard.  The guy with the bicycle lost his grip when the train slowed down, and the handlebars of the bike slammed down against my thigh.  He was really nice and apologetic about it, but freakin’ ow.  I’ll probably have a helluva bruise there tomorrow.  Right now it’s just very tender to the touch.  Hopefully not too tender for me to sleep on that side.

When I got home, I found an interesting item in my email box.  Kohl’s wants me to be on their seasonal team.  Oh, freakin’ joy.  I know I should be happy about it, since it is (kind of) a job, but…  Somehow ending up in retail at this stage of my life, as opposed to any of the other areas where I’ve had real serious experience, feels like I’ve let myself and everybody around me down.  That’s not the way it’s supposed to work with jobs, is it?  I’m pretty sure it’s not.  So now I have a bunch of paperwork to do before I get a start date.  What I’m not seeing is where I should send it once it’s done, so I’m guessing that I drop it off at customer service at the store where I’ll be working.

September 02, 2017, 11:40:16 PM
Reply #421

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #421 on: September 02, 2017, 11:40:16 PM »
This is probably going to be a short update.  It wasn’t much of a day, accomplishment-wise.  The return of the high temperatures might have had something to do with that.

There was no rehearsal today, in honor of Labor Day.  Or at least so people could do their things on the long weekend.  We have nothing special planned, so I just had the whole day to myself.  I must confess it felt kind of good.  And James got his butt out of bed early enough for me to get the sheets into the washer before I went out to the pool.  They were still in the second load, but at least they were off the bed so it could have plenty of airing before I was ready to put clean ones on.

I got out to the pool slightly later than I would have preferred because I was waiting for both machines to finish the load in progress.  Even so, I was only about half an hour later, so not much in the long run.  One couple was already there, but they left shortly after I arrived.  Another two adults (unconnected) showed up while I was approaching the end of my time.  All in all, it was peaceful and relaxing, the way I like it.  I will want to aim for an earlier start for the rest of the weekend, though.  By the time I left, it was already getting a bit hot for my taste.  Plus, the earlier I start, the more likely the pool is to be kid-free for the whole time.

Laundry was my main accomplishment for the day, which says something about the day.  And yet I felt like I didn’t have enough time.  Now I can’t remember exactly what I thought I needed more time for.  I did do bits and pieces of things – job hunting, working on lines, Dragon Cave stuff…  It feels like I’m missing something, but I have no idea what.  Oh, well.  If it comes to me, I can always add it in later.

Edit:  I also did the Kohl's "paperwork," which turned out to be completely electronic.  One of the accompanying documents mentioned a start date 7-10 days after submission of the forms.  Given the holiday weekend, I'd expect to be at the long end of that period, which is fine with me.  I'm still hoping to get the other seasonal job I interviewed for, and I'd prefer that to happen before Kohl's puts any time into training me.
« Last Edit: September 03, 2017, 12:20:01 AM by JudithC »

September 03, 2017, 08:24:30 PM
Reply #422

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #422 on: September 03, 2017, 08:24:30 PM »
It’s been another short-update kind of day.  The high temperatures have returned, and my energy has re-gone.  Is that a word?  It is now.  Anyway, my energy hit all-gone in mid-afternoon, so I stretched out on the couch.  I don’t know how long I actually slept, but I was in and out for a couple of hours.  Hopefully that won’t trash my ability to sleep tomorrow – which, by the way, is now forecast to be the hottest day of the week.  That used to be Tuesday.  I won’t complain if Tuesday is cooler, since that’s when I intend to go to a movie at the theater that’s within walking distance, and walking when the temperature is approaching triple digits is no fun at all.

I had a nice, quiet pool time.  Once again there were a couple of other adults out when I got there, but I know and like them.  Another three, two of them enormous, arrived when I was in the last quarter of my time.  Fortunately they were courteous, and did not take over the whole pool.  The kids started arriving shortly after I left, but surprisingly there weren’t a lot of them.  The most annoying person all day was the guy blasting his music at volumes that I consider too loud for shared space.  Apparently nobody out there agreed with me because nobody said anything.  He left eventually, so it’s all good.

In other news, the director of the play has found somebody else to take the second role off my hands.  I'm pleased about that, though the way she worded the email made me wonder if she was mad at me.  The next time I see her will be Wednesday, so I'll have to ask her then.  I didn't mean to be a bother, but considering that I was the only one stuck understudying two roles, and there's normally an excess of women in groups like this, I didn't think it was that big a deal.  Anyway, now I can stop splitting my focus, and concentrate on the quirks of the one character, which is much easier.

September 04, 2017, 09:02:52 PM
Reply #423

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #423 on: September 04, 2017, 09:02:52 PM »
Today turned out to be pretty much a disappointment.  We didn't have enough sun to make pool time interesting, though the temperature certainly got high enough for swimming.  We did, however, have smoke in the air and enough humidity to make typing raise a sweat.  Ugh.  And I just turned my head to the side and back, and promptly felt dizzy.  I can't imagine how the people to the north and south of us, where the fires are happening, are managing to keep breathing anywhere other than in buildings with filtered air.  And I hope somebody thinks to check the filters once all this is over.  They're bound to be filthy.

I feel so much more relaxed about working on my lines now that I only have the one character.  Keeping the two of them separate wasn't all that hard, but developing them both into fully-fleshed "people" was a major challenge.  I tend to have my character percolating in the back of my mind most of the time while I'm in a play, and doing that with two characters wasn't working at all.  Now it’s just Dorothy who’s talking to me.  The latest development is why, aside from the obvious, she reacted so strongly to finding out whodunit.  She’s actually quite ordinary for a lower-middle-class Devonian, but she has a little wicked streak she’s rather proud of.  Finding out that somebody she thought was sweet and long-suffering was actually a multiple murderer stole her thunder, and that offended her.

The most fun part of the day was seeing On the Waterfront on TV.  It’s even older than I am (made in 1954), but it has held up remarkably well.  I knew that Marlon Brando and Karl Malden had landmark roles in it, but I hadn’t realized that Leonard Bernstein wrote the score.  Even then he had a terrific way with irregular rhythm and non-standard tonality.  The fact that it was about my town was… interesting, and I hope that conditions really did improve.  I know a lot of bad things happened there (and probably still happen), but watching them bothers me because it is still my town, and always will be no matter how long I live here.

James and his boss brought around a pressure washer to clean our deck.  Then they went to do… something else.  I have no idea what.  I went ahead and brought in the deck furniture, since they won’t be washing with it out there.  I wonder if James will notice.  I left the outdoor cat food bowl and the mat it’s on because it will be easy enough to move in on the fly.  Not that any-furry-body has been eating out of it lately.  Hopefully that’s because the cats who were coming to visit have humans of their own.  I wouldn’t have minded adopting either one of them, but we really don’t need another cat, even if it is the black cat I’ve been craving.

September 05, 2017, 09:38:50 PM
Reply #424

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #424 on: September 05, 2017, 09:38:50 PM »
Last night it took me ages to fall asleep.  I might not have gotten to sleep at all if I hadn’t taken a piece of chill pill at shortly after 1am.  Some idiots with fireworks started a fire just on the far side of the river and about sixty miles east.  We started seeing falling ash in the late afternoon, and the moon was bright red.  When I heard about places where people were being evacuated, I thought to check the closet where the cat carriers live.  Only two of the three we’d need to get all the cats out were there.  James forgot to get back the one he lent his friend Aaron, who apparently puts money for weed ahead of making sure he could get his cat to safety in case of emergency.  I feel sorry for the cat if there ever is an emergency, but that falls into the category of not my problem.  I did make sure James knew where the Official Papers file was, so we have little things like my passport and Social Security card, our birth certificates and insurance policy information.  Anyway, worrying about the fire did in any chance I had of getting to sleep without assistance.

Things have gotten worse since last night.  At last notice, the fire on the other side of the river was still out of control, and had jumped the river to start three small fires that I hope were put out before they got too big.  Of course the wind has been blowing in the right direction to help the fires spread this way.  The sun was obscured enough this morning to be red, too.  I thought about taking a closer look with my eclipse glasses, but I waited too long, and once the sun was overhead, it was just heavily overcast.  And it’s been muggy as hell.

The good news is that they caught the idiots with the fireworks, who apparently had been cited for some other violation of the law even before they were heard giggling about dropping the firecracker into the gorge.  I think they should have to meet the people they burned out of their homes.  James thinks they should have to replant the forest.  All of it.

Just in case I wasn’t bummed enough, it turned out that the last day for the pool was yesterday, not today, as posted on the calendar.  I’d so have been out there for a last swim, particularly considering how disgusting the weather got to be in the afternoon. 

For hopefully the last disappointment of the day…  I’d planned to go to a movie at the theater within walking distance, but I got about a third of the way there and decided that I couldn’t stand to walk all that way in the crap we had for air.  For the record, air should not have chunks.  Fortunately that was right where I could turn to go to Petsmart, which was kind of on the way home.  I had a coupon for a small bag of Science Diet dry cat food that was going to expire tomorrow, so the detour was definitely an idea whose time had come.  By the time I got home, I was so hot and sweaty I could hardly stand myself.  A dip in the pool would have been more than welcome.  Oh, well.

The bag of food was small enough to empty into my current-food container, but I decided to do a taste test first, so I put a couple of handfuls into one of the food bowls.  All three of the cats liked it!  That was a relief, considering that I knew a cat who hated Science Diet so much that she’d pull it out of her bowl and use it for litter.  So the rest of the bag went into the container, and tomorrow morning I’ll shake it to mix everything together.  I hope they don’t get too used to it.  There’s no way in the world that we’ll ever be changing to food that costs $17.99 for a 3.5-pound bag.

September 07, 2017, 01:09:51 AM
Reply #425

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #425 on: September 07, 2017, 01:09:51 AM »
As of the last report I read, the fire in the Columbia River gorge had expanded to 31,000 acres.  That’s all on the Oregon side.  I’m hoping that the lack of news from the Washington side (where I am) meant that there was nothing to report.  Even so, it smells like smoke outside, and the sky had a solid cover of smoke and/or clouds when it was light enough outside to see.  Breathing has been difficult, and I’ve had periodic dizzy spells all day.

On the bright side, I was mistaken about the pool being closed for the season.  They left the cover on yesterday presumably to keep the ash out, but it was open today, and will be at least through this weekend.  I didn’t get out there because it wasn’t that warm, and the lack of sun meant that I’d only have been out for a quick dip anyway. 

I have a date for my orientation at Kohl’s:  9/19.  I could have picked one of two earlier dates, but the one that wouldn’t have involved sacrificing a $5 Tuesday movie would have interfered with a rehearsal.  So I put it off as long as I could, still hoping for good news from last Friday’s interview.  It feels like forever, but it’s actually only been two business days since the interview.  Gods, I hate hoping like this… but the job and the money would be so much better, even if I did end up exhausted from all the overtime the interviewer talked about.

Payment for my last Medicare Advantage evaluation hit my checking account today.  I’ve unsubscribed myself from the mystery shopping company’s emails.  Whatever happens, I won’t be doing any more shops until after my seasonal work is done.  If I do anything other than the job, it will be interviewing – and that only if I’m at Kohl’s.  For one thing, the other job would occupy all the business hours, and for another, Kohl’s is what I don’t feel I owe any loyalty.  Not when they could replace me in five minutes or less.

I’m starting to feel like I’m spinning my wheels, working on my lines.  That might mean that I’m overdoing it.  I’ve found that I have a tendency to start messing up if I push too hard with learning.  If that’s the case, it’ll show on tomorrow’s first read-through, after I’ve had a night of sleep and not actively working on it.

Tonight’s rehearsal was a combination of boring and frustrating.  It was our first time using the real stage with the real set and props, which was good.  Well, it was good for the main cast.  They got to go through the scene twice, in detail, and I got to watch the first-choice actors be unable to answer character-related questions because they obviously don’t think about their characters outside rehearsals.  Then, right before I had to leave to catch my bus, she started with a run for the understudies, which couldn’t possibly have been much of a run considering she’d used all but the last half hour of the allocated time.  And when I said that I hoped it was all right that my Dorothy (character name) was slightly different, she basically told me to turn off my creativity.  All in all…  If this is the way the rest of rehearsal time is going to go, I’m sorry I said I was willing to understudy.  Or maybe it would have been better if she’d just treated us like conventional understudies and not acted like we matter.

September 07, 2017, 10:21:43 PM
Reply #426

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #426 on: September 07, 2017, 10:21:43 PM »
This will probably be a short update because I’m feeling too lousy to write much.  The ick started with the traditional night of insomnia before a day when I had things to do.  And unfortunately the air hasn't cleared much.  Every once in a while the sun cut through enough to make shadows, which was an improvement, and for most of the day it was hazy white rather than red, but still...  As James observed, air should not have chunks.

I did too much running around today, thanks to an interview that was in an unfamiliar part of Portland.  Going there, I managed to make just about every mistake I could have made with the transportation, so it took a ridiculously long time.  Going home, I changed my mind part way because street traffic was awful, which made the light rail a better option than the bus on the Portland side, even though it added in a bit of a hike that I’d have been better off without.

What made matters worse was that the interview was a complete waste of time.  I knew the minute I walked in the door that I didn’t want to work there.  The place had that kind of atmosphere.  Plus one of the two interviewers acted like doing the interview was an imposition on him.  Way to make me decide I didn’t want to work for him, or even anywhere near him.

As a result of all the running around, I'm not going to tonight's rehearsal because I just don't feel up to it.  No great loss, though.  Only the last 2½ of the sixteen pages of script being rehearsed tonight concern me, and the blocking is minimal (cross to and sit in a chair, play having a crashing headache and dizziness while in the chair, play passing out... and that's about it) so I don't feel like I'm missing much.  Particularly since, if tonight’s rehearsal goes like yesterday’s, I'd probably just have been sitting and watching the main cast.

September 08, 2017, 09:11:26 PM
Reply #427

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #427 on: September 08, 2017, 09:11:26 PM »
Last night I got a wonnnnnderful night’s sleep.  It was like I closed my eyes and it was night, and then opened them and it was morning.  Granted, it was only 6:30 because that was when James’s alarm went off, but still…  It’s been a while since I slept over seven hours straight through, and without any kind of sleep aid to boot. 

I didn’t do a whole lot of anything today.  The air quality was still poor, which affected my breathing and therefore my energy level, but at least it stayed cool.  Now, at the end of the day, it’s starting to look like what’s in the sky might be more clouds than smoke.  If so, maybe what’s left of the mess is clearing out.  According to the forecast, the weekend will be cool and cloudy, but I can deal with clouds.

I had a bit of irritating contact with somebody from a staffing agency.  She emailed me out of the blue based on my resume on Indeed.  She included information about a call center job because Indeed required some kind of job-related information, but explained that that wasn’t the only thing available.  Against my better judgment, I emailed back to say it would be all right for her to call me to discuss other jobs.  What happened?  She had somebody else call me specifically about the call center job, and that person called without even looking at my resume.  I might have been a bit brusque with her, but really, if she didn’t even do her job to the extent of looking at the resume that was readily available, why would I want to work with her?  Or, for that matter, with the coworker who couldn’t even be bothered to call me herself?  Oh, and it was the only thing available.

Other than that, pretty much all I did was a couple of rounds of online job hunting, writing one roleplay post (which turned out longer than I expected), and going through my lines once.  I did nothing about my lines yesterday and don’t seem to have lost anything, so I feel secure about cutting back to once a day going forward.  Maybe just once a day for what we don’t rehearse on rehearsal days.  At this point what I need isn’t more review.  It’s the stage time I’m not going to get.

September 09, 2017, 10:49:07 PM
Reply #428

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #428 on: September 09, 2017, 10:49:07 PM »
Last night I really wanted to smack James.  He came to bed way after me, and decided that because I said hello to him (so he’d know he wouldn’t be waking me up if he made a little noise), it was all right to start a conversation.  After that, just in case that wasn’t enough to make sure I was wide awake, he started playing a game on his phone.  That only lasted a couple of minutes, but by the time he was done, I was wide awake and absolutely furious.  And I didn’t get to make up the sleep I lost in the morning, either.  As usual when James sets an alarm, I got woken up earlier than I needed to be.  I also had to kick him out of bed because he turned over and went back to sleep – also pretty typical for him.

I was having a lot of trouble with dizziness this morning, but I'm feeling much better now.  Once in a while I do still have a moment of not feeling quite right.  Nothing like yesterday, though, and not any more than usual when the air pressure is changing like it is now.  Hopefully if the weather settles a bit, so will my inner workings.

Today’s rehearsal was one where I only had to be there for the afternoon part.  Still, I wanted to make sure I got the laundry done before I left.  Since I was so tired I felt queasy, I wanted to see if I could catch up on some of the lost sleep.  Instead of just getting up and staying up, I got up, stripped the bed and sprayed James’s side with Febreze, washed my hair (so it would have the maximum drying time before I left), put in the first load of wash, and then came downstairs and stretched out on the couch.  When the wash was done, I moved it to the dryer, started the second load of wash, put clean sheets on the bed, and lay down there until the dryer was done.  It worked out well all around.  I got some more sleep, and from the bedroom it was easy to tell when the dryer stopped running.

The trip to rehearsal was more exciting than it needed to be.  Just as the bus was pulling up to my stop, one car ran into another across the street.  I couldn’t tell what the traffic lights were doing, to know which of the drivers was stupid, but the end result was that one was pulling out of the road from the Safeway parking lot and the other came up the main road from their left and hit them.  About ten minutes down the road, my bus went around a difficult corner and discovered that the previous bus hadn’t quite made it.  They hit somebody’s truck.  So much fun, for a very different definition of fun.

Rehearsal was OK.  At least I got to do something this time.  And I found out that I’ll have to speak louder, which is not news.  I wouldn’t even have found that out if I hadn’t specifically asked, because understudies got zero comments except for minor blocking corrections during our run-through.  I’m starting to wish we didn’t have our own performance.  With this little stage time, and this little feedback on the stage time we do get, we’re going to look and sound like crap.  I don’t know about any of the others, but I for one don’t want to look like crap even in front of an audience of friends and family.

We have a sky again!  At least we did earlier in the day.  It was even blue, and there was sun.  I did some checking, and it looks like the fire on our side of the river either never got big enough to be dangerous or is now under control.  What's scary is the Oregon side, where the fire extends for miles along the Columbia River and up into the hills, and is only about 10% contained.  As I’m typing this, it has started raining – not hard, but still, I take it as a good sign.  It’s gotten chilly, but I’m still tempted to go out and swim in the rain just because it would be such an odd thing to do.

September 11, 2017, 12:21:35 AM
Reply #429

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #429 on: September 11, 2017, 12:21:35 AM »
Today has been gorgeous, though on the cool side.  The morning started out with a few clouds in the sky, but they cleared out, and it stayed clear for the rest of the day.  Last night we got some rain, which helped a bit with the fire situation, but I think it would take a day of downpour to make a serious difference.  Meanwhile, I’ll take the clear sky with no smell of smoke.

At about noon I started what might be my last pool time of the season.  The pool doesn't close until Wednesday, but tomorrow I have a doctor appointment that, including travel, will eat up what I consider primetime, and the forecast for Tuesday isn't all that good.  I'm still hoping for at least a short time on Tuesday.  Today I took my keys to the pool supply room out with me because I thought the water might be cooling off during the night to below the 80° it’s supposed to be, and I couldn’t hear the heater.  Sure enough, the last temperature noted on the statistics sheet was 75°, and the heater wasn’t on.  That’s because flipping the switch to turn it on didn’t do anything. 

I called and told the guy in charge, and I saw him out there, but I’m still not hearing the heater.  I give up.  Considering that I’m not even on the pool crew this year, I’ve done more than my share.  Oh, and the person who’s supposed to be in charge of the pool crew, who was out there this morning, hadn’t said anything.  Oh, well.  There’s only two more days of pool season, and I was the only one out there today, so the nippiness of the water affects a limited number of people.

Not really anything else going on.  I’m still tired more of the time than I should be.  Today that meant an afternoon nap again.  Hopefully the fatigue won’t be a problem when I’m working, or at least I’ll be able to last through my working hours and not crash until I get home.  It’ll be a drag if all I do is work and sleep, but I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it.

September 11, 2017, 11:44:47 PM
Reply #430

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #430 on: September 11, 2017, 11:44:47 PM »
Last night was horrible for sleeping.  My brain wasn’t slowing down at all, so at bedtime I decided to take a piece of chill pill.  I suppose it worked eventually, but it was hard to tell.  At the two-hour point, when I should have been dozing off, I was still wide awake.  Part of the problem was James, who came up with a wide variety of noises about six inches from my ear.  I know he didn’t do it on purpose to keep me awake, but that was the effect.  Eventually I gave up and moved downstairs to the couch, where I got at least a few hours’ sleep.  Then, after he left for work, I moved back up to bed.  Still, a split sleep schedule doesn’t really get the job done.

Weather-wise, this was a beautiful day.  It would have been a perfect day for pool time starting at about 10:30am.  Unfortunately, that was when I was on a bus to my 11:15 doctor appointment, and by the time I got home, it was too hot for my comfort.  On the bright side, things are looking good for last pool time tomorrow, particularly since there’s no movie I’m willing to pay even $5 to see.

I had my last visit with my old primary care person.  She’s going to an urgent care and family practice like the one I used to go to before I got stuck on Medicaid.  We went over the things we didn’t get to during my last visit.  Doing anything about either of my two outstanding issues got tabled because it would have meant making appointments when I don’t have a clue what my schedule at Kohl’s is going to look like.  I already have an appointment with my new primary care person set up for next month, which hopefully will not turn out to be a time when Kohl’s wants me.  At that point I should still only be getting 10-15 hours a week of work, so there really shouldn’t be a conflict, but Murphy’s Law…

Maybe it was the heat, or maybe the air is still not quite right, but I crashed and burned again during the afternoon.  This feeling like my head is full of cotton is getting old.  People talk about the pollution in cities, but I never had this much trouble with air quality until I moved here to the lovely, green PacNW.  If it isn’t allergens, it’s smoke.  I can’t remember ever having a dizzy spell before I moved here, and now I’m having them multiple times a day.  I sure hope that at least some of the problems go away once the autumn rain starts – which, if the forecast is anything like accurate, could happen as early as next week.

September 13, 2017, 12:41:52 AM
Reply #431

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #431 on: September 13, 2017, 12:41:52 AM »
Last night was a much better sleep night, possibly because I was already asleep by the time James came to bed.  Also, it’s getting cooler at night, which is good for sleeping.  If we could keep the temperatures we have right now, I’d be happy.  Shorts during the day and light pajamas at night is about as close to ideal as the world is likely to get.

Today was the real last day for the pool, which fit nicely with temperatures as predicted in the forecasts for the next couple of weeks.  We got up to 83°, which made late morning (my favorite time) perfect for sunbathing.  (Going forward, we’re expecting highs in the low 70s or so for as far out as the forecasts go.)  The water was a bit nippy, but still pleasant.  I sure will miss the sun and easy exercise.  On the bright side, starting next week, I’ll have the walk to work plus 10-15 hours a week on my feet.  I guess that’ll pass for exercise.

When I came in from the pool, there was a message on the answering machine from somebody wanting to offer me a job.  Unfortunately, it was from the sleazy law firm where I knew the minute I walked in the door that I didn’t want to work there.  In addition to the bad atmosphere, the location was complicated to get to, the pay was pretty low, and after training hours of 8-5, they would have wanted me to change to either 9:30-6:30 or 10-7.  The phrasing was that they’d prefer people willing to work those hours, but with these folks, I’m sure it would have been take-it-or-leave.  Anyway, I’m not returning the call.  I’m sure they’ll figure it out.

This evening’s rehearsal was our first time trying to be off book.  The cast member I was most concerned about – the one who can’t even read her lines correctly when she has the script in her hand – wasn’t there.  Most people did pretty well, and they’re definitely on track for an October 6 opening night.  I did all right at remembering my actual lines, but I need to put more time into picking up on certain cue lines, and there were places where my blocking needed work.  Alas, both of those things are best tackled with more stage time, which is exactly what I won’t be getting enough of.  I’ve already decided that I almost certainly won’t be offering to understudy again – absolutely certainly not if there isn’t an understudy performance.  I will, however, be auditioning on Friday for the group’s holiday production.  My goal is to get more practice at auditioning, and I don’t care at all if I don’t get a part.  In fact, given that I don’t have a clue what my schedule at Kohl’s will be like, life will be easier if I don’t get a part.  Which will not, of course, keep me from being disappointed if I don’t get a part because it’s still rejection even if it’s useful rejection.

Coming home, I got dead lucky with the bus.  There are two routes that come to my general area.  One (the 32) goes up the main street that runs just outside the condominium, and the other (the 71) goes up the main street that’s about an equal distance on the other side of the freeway.  The one I caught was a 71, but I got out of rehearsal early enough to catch the run that picked me up about 45 minutes earlier than the next 32.  Then, when we reached the point where the two routes divided, the driver announced that we’d be going up “my” main street because the other one was under construction.  That saved me about another twenty minutes by not making me walk over from the far side of the freeway.  Hooray for easier than expected travel!

My good deed for the day, if it had proved necessary, would have involved communication.  There was a family group of people signing in the section of the bus just ahead of me.  When the driver announced the change in route, I watched carefully for evidence that somebody in that group had caught the announcement and was passing it along to the others.  One of the women was apparently hearing and ASL fluent, and I caught just enough to know that they weren’t going to be surprised when the bus didn’t go where they expected.  Otherwise I’d have made sure that the information got through, because nobody with a baby in a stroller needs to suddenly find themselves somewhere they may or may not know how to get home from.

September 13, 2017, 10:34:18 PM
Reply #432

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #432 on: September 13, 2017, 10:34:18 PM »
This is going to be a short update because of fatigue and stuff.  Last night featured the return of the insomnia that is inevitable on the night before I have something to do.  Even the piece of chill pill I took shortly before bedtime took so long to work that I didn’t get enough sleep and woke up groggy. 

The event of the morning was a 9:30am phone interview.  I don’t know how I did, but the interview itself was awful.  The interviewer was obviously reading a script, and had no idea how to add in any humanity.  It was like being interviewed by a robot.  It didn’t put me off my game, but I felt kind of sorry for her.  Besides that, once again the job listing did not match the job description she had.  In good ways this time, but still, it sure would be nice if people would get their story straight.  For example, the job was listed as part time when it’s actually full time.  I’ll take more hours!

I picked up my new eye drops, which thankfully were covered by my insurance.  My newly former primary care person wasn’t sure they would be.  While I was in Target, I picked up a can of chili for lunch and an inexpensive Marvel superheroes Lego set.  Putting together the Lego set is going to be my reward for making it through orientation.  Not that I think it will be all that difficult, but it is a completely new kind of job, and besides, I deserve a treat.

After lunch I ran out of ambition.  Other than online job hunting and running through my lines, I can’t say I accomplished anything.  I did stretch out on the couch and doze off a couple of times.  It probably won’t hurt tonight’s sleep, though, since I have nothing to do until rehearsal in the evening.

September 15, 2017, 12:46:41 AM
Reply #433

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #433 on: September 15, 2017, 12:46:41 AM »
This morning I got up an hour earlier than usual.  I slept well enough last night that getting up early felt comfortable.  Besides, James’s alarm went off an hour before that, and it’s not like he knows how to be quiet so he doesn’t finish the process of waking me up.

My original plan was to get my usual stuff, like job hunting and running lines, done, and then go for a walk around the long block.  By the time I got around to gong out, I was slightly wobbly from hunger, so I only walked as far as Grocery Outlet.  That’s still about a mile each way, which isn’t too bad for exercise.  I was hoping to find something for lunch, but nothing appealed to me.  While I was there, I looked at their cosmetics section to do a rough price check on any of the stuff I need for the play that they happened to have.  I was not amused.  There was nothing for under $2.99.  So I’ll be using as much as I can get away with of the ancient makeup I already have, and if it’s not exactly what the makeup person had in mind, too bad.  Oh, and I didn’t find a thing that appealed to me for lunch.

So I walked back home and had an open-face sandwich – ham and the maybe quarter of an avocado that was salvageable from what James ignored until it went off.  Obviously my extreme dislike for wasting food has made zero impression on him.  The sandwich was pretty tasteless until I took it apart and dumped some salsa on the bread.

In other news, James had a pre-hearing meeting with his attorney.  After three years of telling me that he should be able to get permanent disability, now the story is that he might be able to get disability for the time his hands were out of commission.  Great big hairy deal.  In other words, once again he got my hopes up for nothing.  Probably literally nothing, since there’s no guarantee he’ll get even that.  So much for him being able to cover the bills for the first time in the fifteen years of our marriage.  And so much for any chance that I’ll be able to pay off the home equity line of credit before I die.  Maybe he’ll understand why I worry so much about finances when he inherits the debt… though I’ll be beyond caring at that point.

Tonight’s rehearsal got silly.  The principal leading lady was having a really rough time because of unrelated issues, but the rest of us kept having slightly giddy moments.  I am so glad there’s a real understudy for my second role!  She hasn’t learned her lines yet by any means, but she’s ever so much easier to work with than the principal.  I’ve also come up with a point of differentiation between the principal’s version of our character and mine.  At one point the leading lady offers her a cup of tea, and then discovers that the teapot is empty and offers to make more.  Our character’s line in response is, “No.  Don’t bother then.  I’ll be home in a few minutes.”  She delivers it like a regular English person.  I deliver it like a guilt-tripping Jewish mother.

I didn’t get quite so lucky with the bus home this time.  It was the 71 again, but tonight it was going most of the way up “my” main road, and then turning on the last main cross street before my stop to finish the trip on the other main road.  Fortunately the driver remembered me from Tuesday, and told me what was going on and asked if I’d like to get out before he made the turn.  Yes!  That shortened my walk, and also let me stop into Safeway for something to satisfy the unbearable craving I’d been having for olives.

September 16, 2017, 12:25:16 AM
Reply #434

JudithC

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Re: The Cat Room
« Reply #434 on: September 16, 2017, 12:25:16 AM »
For the record:  Eating a whole 7.3oz jar of green olives in one sitting is not a good idea.  Green olives are the ones that olive oil comes from.  They went through me like that, which made for an unpleasant start to my attempt to sleep.  Fortunately I’d taken a small piece of chill pill, and it kicked in soon enough for me to get a decent night’s sleep as soon as my insides settled down.

The adventure of the day was doing some in-store research into cosmetics – specifically, the makeup I need for the play.  Not a big deal, except that normally I wear zero makeup.  The only times I’ve worn foundation, it was for a completely different skin color and intended to make me look like somebody else entirely.  I had no idea how to pick a foundation to make me look more like me under stage lights.  Anyway, I went to one of the stores in the chain that James mystery-shops regularly.  In fact, he’ll be shopping there and a couple of others in the chain today. 

It took some looking, but I found two brands that don’t cost an arm and a leg, which also happened to be right next to each other on the aisle.  One was good for the foundation – hopefully a color that will look decent – the primer, and the finishing spray.  The other was better for the lipsticks, both of which are colors I would never wear as myself.  Pale pink and bright pink, ugh.  Or at least I hope they are, and don’t turn out to be like crayons, which sometimes draw as a color that isn’t all that close to what the stick looks like (which is why I made a sample sheet for my package of 149 crayons).

Anyway, James had the job of actually buying the makeup on one or more of his shops.  That way, in the end, the mystery shopping company pays for it – a win all around, as far as I’m concerned.  In addition to the brand and description, I also gave him the SKUs for everything but the lipstick, just in case he wasn't sure he was getting the right thing.  Then I just have to throw it all, plus the blush, mascara, and makeup remover I already have, and cotton balls (to put the makeup on) and tissues (to take the makeup off) into a bag to take to the makeup work shop that will be happening a week from tomorrow.  Oh, joy.  The odds are that the makeup gal won’t even look at me since I’m just an understudy, but there you go.

This evening I went to the auditions for the same group’s holiday production:  It’s a Wonderful Life.  Mostly I wanted to get more experience auditioning, since I don’t expect to be cast.  Not when it’s the kind of group that has “in” people that I’m not one of.  It was pretty much a waste of time all around.  I got called on once, to read two lines as the bad guy’s secretary.  A funny thing happened, though.  I found that I was getting the character just from those two lines and a general understanding of that kind of secretary working for that kind of boss.  The director for this play is the assistant director/stage manager for the one I’m involved with now, so I fully intend to babble at her a bit at tomorrow’s rehearsal.  Of course it won’t make any difference, but I kinda need to let it out somewhere.