one shitty day

Things have not gone my way today.

1. There is a very smelly plumbing problem which I have tried (many times) and failed to fix. Which means I have to call a plumber. Which means research and getting recommendations, cha cha cha.

2. Somebody in this family who shall remain nameless (but it ain’t me) missed a FIFTH dental appointment. Five no-shows since January. This unnamed person (who I’d like to strangle) has now been booted out of the dentistry practice to wander the streets at his/her own peridontal peril. This person must now find a new dentist. Without my assistance, and before he/she loses every tooth in his/her head.

3. Also today: the guy who was doing garden work for me has disappeared, with about a hundred bucks of pre-paid time. So I’m out a hundred bucks, I have to find a new garden person, and the weeds, no dummies they, are already on the march, the invading army bent on world (or at least garden) domination.

5. A bill arrived. This bill had big red letters on it: SERIOUSLY OVERDUE (who writes these things, a surfer dude?). Then lots of dire warnings. Except I had never seen this bill before, so I called, using my reasonable let’s-figure-this-out voice, and I explained.

Me: I’ve got this overdue notice. You seem to think you’ve billed me for $150 in the past, and that I haven’t paid.

Accounting Person: You haven’t paid, that is correct. You are three months in arrears.

/note/ Do they force them to talk like this? /note/

Me: You’re right, I haven’t. Because this is the first such bill I’ve received.

AP: You received four other notices.

Me: I beg to differ. But wait, can I back up a minute? What exactly is it that I’m being billed for. Because there’s no indication here.

AP: Services rendered.

Me: Okay. Which services? You are a large organization. I have consulted more than one professional under your roof. And you will note, I have always paid my bills on time.

AP: So it seems.

Me: Are you doubting me, your computer, or both?

AP: If people would just pay their bills on time.

Me: I sense frustration.

AP: Pay the bill, I’ll be nicer next time.

At that point I asked for this person’s supervisor. It took about five minutes to straighten it out, and it turned out that I did owe them about fifty bucks. I volunteered to pay immediately by credit card, and before I could stop her, the supervisor transfered me back to the SAME AP.

6. And one more, just for fun: My computer is making Noises. Off and on, clicking/grinding noises from deep inside its shiny little heart. I did a full backup but every time I type a page I wonder if I’ll ever see it again.

My solution to this problem? New computer. Load ‘er up with RAM and dual processors and all kinds of goodies, damn the price, full speed ahead. But the Mathematician, the Voice of Reason, the Cautious One, the Patient one (more patient than I am, anyway) thinks I should wait. Just a day, to see what happens.

Good and fine. But I won’t be sleeping much.

Here’s an idea I had. What if I got in touch with Steve Jobs old buddy old pal, and suggested that he give me a top of the line, fully decked out laptop. He can engrave something clever on the lid so people see that (1) I am an author using a mac; (2) Everything I have in print (more than a million words) was created on a mac; (3) that he, Steve Jobs, is a patron of the arts and generous, to boot. heck, I’ll even put one of those MADE WITH A MAC icons on the darn book jacket.

Now I’m going back to work.