Monday, March 01, 2010

The Flaming Lips

Wouldn't it be great if instead of posting how many blog followers you have, that little widget labeled your "following" accordingly? Like, at the top of the pile would be "Jesus Christ." (As in, 'almost as many followers as.') And of course you'd have your Buddha, and various political figures, and Dave Matthews, and Chick-Fil-A. I think I'm somewhere in the neighborhood of "Brownie troop leader."

So last week was exciting! I nearly set my house on fire because I turned the oven to 400 degrees without knowing one of my brand new Chicago Cutlery knives was inside. Cue clouds of offensive smoke....aaaaannnnd: Bright yellow flames! Leaping to life in the oven! Wheeeeee! How did the knife get inside the oven? Daisy probably put it there. She also probably turned the thermostat up to 75 degrees the next day (which J and I both deny doing). Anyway, flaming plastic smells quite foul. But you probably already knew that, because we've all have a little flaming plastic in our lives at some point.

Also this: I called in a new credit card to activate it. I DESPISE doing this, because inevitably you end up talking to a real person who has a huge financial incentive to get you to sign up for fee-based payment protection plans and other goofy add-ons that YOU TRULY DON'T NEED. And I hate high-pressure sales pitches. Especially if there's any kind of accent involved, because I'm never sure if I'm being hustled or not. Because I'm too busy paying attention to the individual words being said (as opposed to what they mean when strung together).

At one point, I think it was my third polite decline, the call center worker got a little pissed at me and my stubborn refusal to cooperate. "It's only 89 cents!" he said, exasperated. I'd already forgotten what sum the 89 cents pertained to--would I be charged 89 cents for every $50 carried on the balance? $100? Every dollar? And how often would it be assessed? Monthly? Weekly? Daily? Hourly?

I suspected the worst.

"It's only 89 cents!" he'd said.

This is what I wish I'd said back: "Only is such an interesting word, don't you think? I wonder if children sewing flair on shirts in the slums of Mumbai would use the word 'only' to describe the sum of 89 cents. That's what...about 42 rupees? Half a day's pay for that child? Is this really some kind of secret surcharge to participate in today's global capitalist system? Who are you REEEEAALLLY, hmmmmm?"

This is what I actually said, smiling politely: "No, sorry. I'm going to pass. Again. Yep. No thanks. Thank you. No. I'm set for today. Thanks. You have a great day, too. Okay. Bye-bye."

This is perhaps one of the few reasons I'm excited about getting old one day. Sure I won't have my teeth, hips, loved ones, or mind. But goddammit, I will be able to say what I really want to say.

I only 40, maybe 45 years to go.


  1. But you stuck to your guns and still said no! I'd have caved, and then turned to my husband and said, "But it's only 89 cents!" And HE would have made all those wonderful points about 89 cents per $50 of balance or whatnot that you made above, and I'd have felt like an idiot. SO! Good on ya, mate! I'm still working on getting to where you are now.

  2. I'm upset about your knife. Someone is messing with you girl, even if it's you. ;)

    So I agreed to sign up for some protection plan where my credit card company would send me a copy of my credit report, and I had the option to cancel within 90 days at no charge or something. So I got the report, no obvious identity theft going on, and called to cancel. The person I spoke with was very helpful, BUT while on hold, I had to listen to about 5 minutes of a very foreboding voice telling me what a fool I was and how clearly someone is going to steal my identity about 5 minutes after I hang up, and I'll be DENIED CREDIT, LOSE MY HOME, and MAYBE BE DENIED EMPLOYMENT!!!

    But then the person was quite friendly. Weird.

  3. Not sure how I stumbled upon your blog - but I love it. Your writing is hilarious. I think you rank much higher than Brownie troop leader!