Thursday, October 11, 2007

Of rental cars and things

Lately when I travel for work it involves a four hour drive each way. I usually rent a car, since I am not convinced mine would make the distance at highway speeds. The last time I drove it 100km per hour a bolt flew off and broke somebody's windshield. I don't wish to repeat such a feat while on the 401 sandwiched by trucks. I have had some doozies, and some really nice ones. I have discovered I hate Uplander mini-vans, and I really really really enjoy satellite/XM radio LOL. Let me tell you, that drive is almost impossible unless you have it (or a kick ass collection of CD's. Which I don't have.) This time I got a really cool looking car (a Dodge Caliber) that is almost brand spanking new (no dented mini-vans - yay!). With. No. Satellite. Radio. I was so desperate that by the time I got here I was listening to a debate on the new referendem vote in French. What is worse? Listening to a Canadian political debate? The fact that the vote is actually over already and the matter has been decided? Or that it was in a language I only half understand? I forgot to pack my ipod (not that I even know where it is since DD snitched it immediately after the last charging) and the car looks like it has an inlet jack. I might have to try and burn my play list onto a CD in time for the drive back lest my eyes roll back in my head. I could be wrong, but driving with one's eyes rolled back doesn't sound safe. You know that game, where you give two situations and ask "Which would you do" or "which is better or worse"? Usually the two situations are equally heinous, only in a different way. Like, would you rather freeze to death or burn to death? Drown in water or suffocate dryly. Is dryly even a word? It doesn't matter, I think you get the picture. Here is MY game. Pick the better car rental. Would you rather a brand new car that smells nice but has nothing to listen to for a 4 hour drive all by yourself - or a dented Uplander mini-van that handles like crap and smells like crotch (and not even your OWN crotch) BUT has XM radio? At this very moment, just stretching after that four hour drive 'en francais', I don't know which one I would pick. Pray for me.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Gobble gobble gobble

Well, Canadian Thanksgiving is over. We had turkey and duck and all the acoutrements expected. My mother and grandmother made "grandma's cabbage rolls" and even DH had several. That right there tells you how good they are, when a vehement veggie hater will eat them cabbage and all. We had a good long week-end. Saturday I cleaned out the fridge. I mean "disassembled the parts and wiped everything with bleach" cleaned. It is so bright and shiny it felt a shame to put anything back into it. I keep forcing people to look in there, I am so proud. The Fedex guy gave me an odd look and refused to come in and see. No manners at all. Now, this might have been the only REAL accomplishment, but getting anything done at all on a long week-end qualifies for quadruple points. Right? I am being brave tonight. I am trying squash. It is a "sweet potato" squash. It has been cleaned, peeled, cut into cubes and is at the moment being roasted with gourmet baby potatoes, brussel sprouts, and onions. My whole life I have loved the smell and look of the stuff, but I just cannot eat it. Is it the stringiness? Maybe. I have successfully eaten butternut squash in SAVORY operations. I think it is the sweetness that turns me off, when people cover it with sugar and cinnamon. Blech. I used to hate sweet potatoes too, until I tried them tossed with butter and cajun seasoning (parcooked) and grilled. Oh my goodness, they were good. Since then I have had them baked and seasoned with salt and pepper, also very good. It was the goopy "candied mess" that I objected to all along. I have told myself that it is silly to be afraid to try something again. My eyes may water and my throat might close up, but I am going to eat those little golden cubes if it kills me. I used to be afraid to try avocados. Scairt to the core, actually. But I finally did it, and was pleasantly surprised and now I really like them (although I don't get them often). Another surprise was brussel sprouts, as they had been my nemesis most of my childhood. I would sit for hours staring a brussel sprout in the face. I would have rathered sleep sitting up in the kitchen than dare die the horrible death sure due to me if I ate that diabolical thing. Now that I am older, I can appreciate their horribleness. Especially tossed with olive oil and butter and seasonings and roasted. Look like hell, taste like heaven. My daughter (the piece of angel food cake that she is) is insisting that I am a horrible abusive mother because I didn't even start cooking dinner until 4 pm and the pork roast is not done and it is after five and almost SIX and she is starving and this is just not fair. Forget the seven hundred snacks she has had since she got home. I tried explaining that when I get my new job, we will be eating later because my schedule will change for sure, and I am just getting her used to that. Most likely I won't be able to work from home, I mean let's be real. And if I get the job of the calibre I want, we are talking high intensity minimum fifty hours per week. Dinner, henceforth, is at six. She is not happy. Dh does not like that idea either, but the other option is that he cooks dinner for two weeks straight (rotating shifts). He doesn't like that idea either. There is no pleasing some people. So I came to a revelation in therapy today. Please, humour me. I think maybe I didn't understand that married people were supposed to be happy and get along and WANT to be with each other. My grandparents had issues in their marriage (on all sides). My parents, my siblings, I didn't really have a "good" marriage to use as a model. In fact, as it turns out, the few "good" marriages I knew were actually horribly flawed. And not behind closed doors, but right there out in the open. Simply being married for a long time and not having killed each other, it turns out, is NOT the only marriage goal. Who knew? Insisting that others make you happy is not right. Trying to make yourself be happy even when everything is wrong is not right either. Sometimes "making it work" is not the right goal. I have been spending some quiet time, thinking about myself. Delving into that scary place in my mind, my true self. Not the self that bakes cute cookies for DD's class at school, or donates canned goods, or brings my share to the family holiday meal. The real me. The me that knows I might as well pipe the words "please like me, please think I am a good person" on those cookies. The me that says if I do good things than the world will see that I am a good person even though I don't feel like I deserve to be thought of that way. The me that brings as much as I can and contributes whatever I can even thought it might over-extend me, in the hopes that I can appease the karma gods with the sacrifice and make things - for ONCE - turn out nicely for EVERYBODY. Not just me. Every body. The me that wants to fix things so that for once I can sleep well and not feel like throwing up all the time. The cipralex and paxil and whatever help with the biological reasons for feeling these things, but I never really dealt with the true psychological issues. It is time I do. Put your seatbelt on, right about here. First of all, in practice I am a kind and loving and caring person (mostly). But am I that way because I really am that kind of person? Or am I that way because a)I want people to perceive me that way, b)I want people to like me and feel these are desirable traits that attract others, c)The part of me that is a control freak and insists on following rules simply won't let me break those laws and mores that I perceive all "good citizens" should live by. Am I a nice person because I am, or because I won't allow myself to NOT be this way for various reasons. Am I even a nice person at all? I am self centered and self involved (for those of you that are new. *cough*). Do I easily forget peoples names and birthdays and important dates because I am forgetful? Scatter brained? Busy? Artistic? After all, geniuses all have their quirks. Or is it because those things don't pertain to ME, and thus my mind feels they are unimportant to retain. Sigh. I don't know. So many things came up today that I don't even know where to start or end or what. Any ideas?