mellificent: (breathe)
I have a new car! Woot! I actually don't go get the money from State Farm until tomorrow but I spent more than we're going to get, anyway - I decided that even with Carmax, who is supposed to be on guard for these things (such as water damage, I mean), I don't feel comfortable buying a used car right now. So I have a brand new green 2009 Corolla with ABS brakes and side airbags and all other kinds of bells and whistles. And a gray interior, yay! (I am just not a fan of beige.) Tight credit, smight credit - the dealer and the credit union were falling all over themselves to give us low interest rates. However, we took the somewhat-higher rate the credit union gave us - still awfully low - and a $500 rebate from Toyota instead.

Pictures of the car to come. Instead, here is a picture of my current workplace:

Temporary digs
mellificent: (Buffy quote: Nancy tribe)

It's a Focus!
Originally uploaded by Mellicious.


I'm as surprised as anybody else, but I bought an American car. We wanted something low-mileage, and well, a low-mileage used Ford just doesn't cost nearly as much as a a low-mileage used Honda. And in the last couple of years, this car has started getting quite decent reviews. I did my homework, don't worry. And I really like the way it drives.

(The color is a gray-green which I really quite like. The interior is tan, which is boring, but I figured that was a silly thing to quibble over.)

Rob says he doesn't want to look at cars again for a long, long time.
mellificent: (Calvin - not fair)
On my way to see my mother this afternoon, the check engine light on my car came on, right smack on the very top of the causeway - meaning about as far from anywhere as you can manage to be in a mostly-urban area - and before I could get to a good stopping place, it was smoking like crazy. If the engine has not blown up again, I will be amazed.

But you know what? I don't care. That car had clearly outlived its useful life, and we will just have to get another one. One thing about it, I seem to be in the way of inheriting a bit of money soon. (Quite soon, I'm afraid.) I had them tow it back up to the dealer, and Rob came and got me, and we went by to see my mother and Art immediately volunteered the loan of the (other) Honda - the one that we're supposed to be giving to my sister, whenever she bothers to come down and get it - and so I have something to drive for the moment, and we'll worry about the rest later.

My mother is in what the hospice nurse described as a "semi-coma" - she is still eating, though, if somebody feeds her pureed-type stuff. Art had called and told me yesterday that she wasn't eating at all, and that sent me into a tailspin that lasted most of the day today. It turned out not to be quite as dire as he made it sound, but it's bad enough, I suppose. Last weekend when I went in, she didn't really acknowledge my presence but she held on to my hand really hard. Not now. She might have sqeezed it a tiny bit, or it might have been my imagination. I'm not sure. In any case, it wasn't much.

(Oh, and my aunt, with her usual sure sense of timing, picked today to e-mail me to talk about funeral arrangements. Gee, thanks.)
mellificent: (Buffy quote: death star)
When I said in chat the other night that President Ford was dead, somebody said, "That's two" - presumably meaning James Brown was the first one. What I want to know is, does Saddam count as #3? Or do the deaths have to be by a more natural means than execution? I don't understand the rules of that business, I guess.

(I may have more to say about President Ford later. I started writing a massive brain dump about presidents, but that's the kind of thing that I may or may not ever finish. We'll see.)

In other current-events-related things, I am inclined to want to rant about Donald Trump, mostly because, in my interpretation of what he's said, his objections to Rosie O'Donnell are primarily that she's fat and she has a hot girlfriend. (I do not buy for a minute that Rosie O'Donnell is ugly. She's not. Donald Trump is, though, which may be why he's so damn sensitive on the topic.)

Also, I loathe people who call other people "losers" - ugh. I didn't like the man to begin with but I've just gotten a lot more vehement about it.



So, I've been meaning to write an entry all week that was about what I've actually been doing this week, and I keep getting off on other topics.

So here goes. )

Read this: the slackers of bedford falls. Somebody else doesn't like that movie! yay!


Holidailies gold

 

mellificent: (Frank the Zombie)
I can’t sleep. I got up and took a benadryl and I’m hoping it kicks in soon. I’ve felt fairly crappy all day today and I really don’t want to miss work tomorrow. Especially since I am going to be gone Tuesday in any case, in order to have the damn needle biopsy that I put off last week because I was so sick. I have now been sick for just about two weeks, and I am awfully fucking tired of it.

Until today, I had actually been feeling better. The last couple of days I had still coughing some, but not quite as much, and I felt quite a lot better. Well, I don’t care - if I still feel this bad tomorrow, I’m staying home. They can manage without me for a couple of days, and I can stay home and lounge around in bed and read Harry Potter and take naps, and hope that  that makes me feel better, because I’ve had it with being sick.


Did y’all see the piece on Netflix on 60 Minutes? It made me want to watch all the Netflix DVDs that are lying around my house so I can get new ones. I had already watched one on Friday - the first four episodes of the Christopher Eccleson season of Doctor Who. Then tonight I watched another one - the last disk of the BBC Bleak House from last year. (I really do need to read that book.)


Yesterday we finally got the license plates for the new car, and since the check for the down payment also finally came through the bank this week, I finally feel like we actually own the car. I mean, really, if somebody wrote you a check for over $2000, would it take you three weeks to cash it? I was beginning to think they lost it.

Complaints

Nov. 16th, 2006 11:33 pm
mellificent: (fall tree)
Of course you can't buy a car and have it really be easy, that just wouldn't be right. We had a very easy time on Saturday, on the whole, and came home with the car, but then on Monday it developed that the credit union wanted all the papers to be in both of our names, to match the loan which was written up as a joint loan. OK, fine, so we'll go back and re-do the papers, shouldn't take long. Well, it didn't, once we got there. But getting there was a problem - we left right after work and promptly got caught in traffic. There was a wreck on the causeway, which is the only major way off the island. (The two "minor" ways, for you completists out there who want to know - minor mostly because they go to very out-of-the-way places - are the ferry to Bolivar Peninsula and the San Luis Pass Bridge, which is way the hell off, 25 miles south(east) at the very end of the island.) Plus, where normally the causeway is two bridges, right now there's only one because they're in the process of demolishing the old ones and rebuilding. They built the one new span, which is meant to be 4 lanes (in one direction) plus a full shoulder on each side - but at the moment, meaning the next couple of YEARS, presumably, it has traffic going both ways on it, which means six lanes and no shoulder whatsoever. Which makes it hell on earth when there's a wreck.

OK, so anyway, we eventually got out of traffic, up to the Toyota dealer and got the papers done. No problem. THEN I ended up spending most of the day Tuesday playing go-between between the dealer's finance guy and the loan guy at the credit union. These guys could not get their shit together. All that needed to happen was that the dealer's guy needed to fax the purchase order to the credit union guy, and in return they would get their money. Instead I get this: "Well, I sent the fax." "Well, I haven't gotten any faxes from them." Apparently neither of them is too good at working a fax machine. And I don't think they ever actually talked to one another, that would've made communication too easy. But eventually the Toyota dealer finally got all the papers to the CU, so presumably they've gotten their money by now and I can quit worrying about that. It was just another bit of stress that I really didn't need this week. I was seriously teetering on the edge.

 ------------------------

It didn't help that in the middle of all this, I get a call from radiology: I need to come in and have a follow-up mammogram. They called on Monday and scheduled it for Wednesday, which is a little ominous in itself because they usually make you wait longer than that. But then my OB/Gyn's nurse calls, and says, "Oh, I don't think it's anything to worry too much about, it just looks like some calcification," and so I relax for a while. So I go in yesterday, get it done, and the tech says, "OK, let me just go check the film real quick, I'll be back in a minute." 15 minutes go by and I'm starting to get worried. I figure the longer that takes, the more the chance that that means they're looking at something specific. And they were. They take me in to the room where the doctor is looking at the films - and she has it on a computer, too, I don't know if they scan it or what - and she shows me these spots with the calcification. She says there are some funny cells in there. 80% chance they're benign, 20% chance they're cancer. I can just wait 6 months and "see what happens" - which I think would drive me insane - or I can have a needle biopsy. So, I'm having a needle biopsy after Thanksgiving. I've had one once before, it's not a huge deal. I think wondering for six months if I have cancer or not would be a lot worse.

 ------------------------

This is not going to be a very cheery journal to read through the holidays, I suspect. (Even assuming that I don't have cancer!!) Y'all are going to have to bear with me, because writing about it does help, it seems.

For a little comic relief, though, take a look at Lupin's wand, which is, well, sorta scary. Makes me inclined to think the set designers had been reading Snape/Lupin fanfiction or something.


(I forgot to say earlier that I called this "Complaints" because I meant to link to the Complaints Choir - even though I'm sure everybody who cares to has seen it by now. I don't normally watch a lot of YouTube stuff, but I like that one.)
mellificent: (Buffy quote: slight apoc)
Oh, I have never remembered to say that the thing that cost so much on my car repairs was a new motor for the condenser, or something to that effect. That was $500 or so. Then a new thermostat, at $200 and change. By the time we added the state inspection, which is no longer cheap, and tax, we were at nearly $850. Apparently if these things had stayed as they were it would have been Very Bad. I suspect that means as in might-have-burned-up-another-engine type of bad. (And please don't tell me about how I should have just bought a new car instead. We only have one car right now, and it needs to keep running. Even after we get another one, I would really like for this one to keep running. We certainly can't afford two new cars right now. Even if they're used.)

(GuildWars babbling behind the cut...)


mellificent: (Buffy quote: joystick)


I would list everything that needs to be done to my car, except I can't remember all of it - I should have written it down! It was the thermostat and something else related to temperature-regulating and it's going to be at least $500. (I just need to remember that that would only be a month or so's car payment if I bought a new car...)
mellificent: (LJ life)
Well, lunch with the [personal profile] columbina family went off as planned. We met at the original Cadillac Bar, which is a mexican restaurant that's right on I-10 so was right on their way through Houston. (It is a Landry's restaurant now, but Landry's had the sense not to change it much from the way it was, thankfully.) It was very nice to see both of them. I hope it's not another two years before we get to do it again.

I was running early, for once in my life, so I dropped my car off at the dealer on the way up - they may be expensive, but at least they give you a rental car in the bargain. And unfortunately it's still there - I mostly needed the inspection done, but I also have had problems with the air conditioning not working properly and so I asked them to check it, and apparently that's the sticking point. I hope it's nothing too horribly expensive. (Probably a vain hope. Sigh.)

Meanwhile, after lunch and before I gave up on getting my car back today, I went shopping. I pretty much bought my summer wardrobe. Five pairs of pants and probably as many shirts. Maybe more. I bought so much stuff I lost count! (Also, some really adorable earrings, which were on sale. I am back on an earring kick lately.)

(Oh, and I got an e-mail from Col saying they made it to Austin okay. Which was nice to hear, because I worry. I am getting to be an old mother hen, I swear.)
mellificent: (GW black logo)
(Except for the last paragraph, which strays from the GW theme a little bit!)

I was thinking I need to put up some more Guild Wars screenshots, because they amuse me. I think I got one last night that has both our lovely characters in it, while we were paused for something or other. Seriously, one thing about these kind of games, the female characters, at least, are not hard on the eyes. (Some of the male ones, too - I think the male Rangers are particularly hot. They have sort of an Aragorn vibe going.) My character's "armor" these days includes really skin-tight lavender-colored pants and a low-cut top, and Col's warrior girl Io has what appears to be a fur-trimmed bustier, to go with her Xena-style short skirt and boots. Also, I have just joined the Older Gamers' guild, and tonight they are doing a "group picture" - which should be interesting.

So we made sure I did more of the navigating around in the game last night, and it worked out very well. Col was also apparently worried that he was doing too much of the attacking, but that hadn't been bothering me. I do think maybe I have been too shy, or something, about starting fights - I think I worry that I will draw more enemies down on our heads than I need to. But most of the time it's fine, even if you do. (If you die in this game, your teammates can revive you anyway, or if everybody dies, you get automatically revived. You lose some energy for a while, is the worst that happens. I think the only time both of us died was the first time we fought Charr - which are big sort of walking-tiger warriors - back in the pre-Searing stage of the game.)

I do have a thing or two going on in my life that doesn't involve Guild Wars or quilts, believe it or not. But most of it is stuff I don't particularly want to talk about, like work and money. (Rob's pickup is dying a slow and painful death, for one thing, and it's still a couple of months before we were ready to buy another car!) At work, we have had Personnel Drama, which I don't really think I ought to say too much about here, and we have been very busy lining up a bunch of data for some consultants that are coming in. That has finally slowed down, though, at least for me. But yay, it's Friday! Tonight, more Guild Wars (of course) and tomorrow, quilting!
mellificent: (Buffy quote: slight apoc)
I spent almost $900 to get my car out of the shop yesterday.

Every time I tell anybody this - either online or in real life - it seems to start a discussion on Fixing It vs. Buying New, with most people coming down on the side of buying a new car instead (or at least a newer used car). I still maintain that the several-thousand-dollars I have spent on this car in the last year will be worth it if I can drive it for two more years (or more), and I don't see why I can't. I need to, really - Rob's truck is in terrible shape, and it will be a miracle if it lasts the six months or so until summer, when my mother is planning on selling us her Accord. The Accord is 5 years old and has a whoppin' 36,000 miles on it, and has been perfectly maintained by Art, who has nothing better to do than wash the thing twice a week and take it in to get the oil changed every few months, so it's going to be practically like getting a brand-new car.

(Art needs to be canonized or something. I don't know what I'd do without the man.)

So anyway, we'll probably get a credit-union loan for the Accord, and it'd be nice if I could drive the Civic until that's paid off, see? So really I would like to keep it going for another three years and change, at least. A lot of people drive Hondas with 200,000 miles on them, and mine just hit 120,000 lately (and I'm not putting many miles on it at all these days, either), so I don't see why three more years is considered outlandish. I'm going to try it, anyway.
mellificent: (Las Vegas sign)

Bellagio fountains
Originally uploaded by Mellicious.

TUS-Con 2 is this weekend, and even though I'm not really particularly upset that I couldn't go, it still made me nostalgic for TUS-Con 1, in Las Vegas a year ago, which was an awful lot of fun. I took a whole bunch of pictures of the fountains, and this is my favorite one. (The pictures are especially nice because you can't hear the Celine Dion song that they were blasting at you at the time.)

I keep getting e-mails from Expedia touting great 100th-anniversary specials to Las Vegas, and I am so, so tempted to get us tickets. But Rob would kill me. Besides, I spent almost $300 on my car today. (It wouldn't start, which turned out to have something to do with some kind of safety switch under the pedals, or something like that, so that was a very cheap fix. But I also got a C/V joint replaced while I was there - something I'd been putting off - and that was the expensive part.)



(More Las Vegas pictures here. Mostly of buildings and not of people, though, because I kept forgetting my camera at the times that the most people were around. Or turning unaccountably shy. One or the other. The back of Jette's and Debby's heads are in a few pictures, though. And maybe a sliver of Columbine here & there.)
mellificent: (nautilus)
Once again, it's bedtime and I'm writing an entry. The only reason it isn't past bedtime is that I don't have to go to work tomorrow, so I can stay up a bit later. I'm getting my car worked on instead, oh joy. (Mostly routine stuff: inspection, oil change. But I'm going up to the dealer in Houston so that they can tinker some of their past work, which is still under warranty. Thus the need for a whole day off.)

I was talking to somebody the other day about how Galveston was still sort of seedy, but not necessarily in a bad way. (It was because of Columbine's Pensacolas Past entry.) I don't think it's in any real danger of losing that quality any time soon, but there are two large demolition jobs going on on the Seawall, and both of them make me sort of sad. One is the old convention center, which was ugly and unused, and I'll mostly be glad it's gone, except that it's where my uncle Ted (who's now dead) graduated from medical school back in the 60s. I was 6 or 7 and that graduation was one of the first things like that that I was allowed to go to. I remember feeling very grown up. I think UTMB has their graduation ceremonies on campus these days.

The second one was an old, very very seedy motel that had become a haven for prostitutes and drug-users, and so I probably shouldn't be too sad about it either, in a way, but on the other hand it was a very cool-looking hotel in its time - all retro-late-50s curves. (I can't even think what the name of it was - seahorse? sandpiper? some kind of beachy name like that - jesus, my memory is so terrible sometimes.) It even had a double-decker round bar. And I'm sure both of those places are going to be replaced with some sort of chain motel, or maybe a restaurant. Yeah, we need more of those.
mellificent: (Bellagio shiny)
We are still having fabulous, not-terribly-hot weather, although it has finally gotten warm enough that I am aware that my air-conditioner in the car still isn't working quite right. Luckily, it's under warranty and I'm already taking it in to the dealer Friday anyway (for inspection and oil change and so forth) so they can look at it then.

We had a jet that kept flying low over our house today, for no apparent reason. Rob, who usually knows such things, thought it was a MiG. There is an aircraft museum not far from us and they hold periodic airshow-type things on the weekends, so presumably that's where it came from - although usually they have things like B-17s rather than jets.

We went to see Kingdom of Heaven today, and I enjoyed it. Orlando Bloom actually seems like a grown-up in this movie, for the first time I can remember.

If you're interested in seeing all my zillion quilt pictures (ok, actually 49 of them, so far) that I've uploaded to flickr, they're here. And I don't know why I never remember to make livejournal posts except right at bedtime, but it is Sunday night, unfortunately, and I need to go to bed at a decent hour, so good night!
mellificent: (umbrellas)
Yesterday it was beautiful - sunny and warm - and Rob and I drove down the Seawall to eat barbeque for lunch, and on the way back I passed a middle-aged guy in a hardhat in the parking lot, and he said to me, "Enjoy the sun, it won't last long." And I laughed and said I was sure he was right. And boy, was he. This morning it was gloomy and rainy, and the front blew in later in the morning and by lunchtime today it was cold.

I have my car back, and I am very broke. But at least it runs fine. (I even turned on the air conditioning for a minute, to see if it really worked. Boy, am I gonna be happy to have that in a couple of months. Today, not so much.)

I missed a retirement party this afternoon because I had to go up to Houston to get the car. I think the retiree forgave me when I called her and told her I was making her a quilt, though. (See the quilt blog if you want to hear more about it. There's even designs!)

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