Dark Days

Text to my cousin two weeks ago…

“Just feeling sorry for myself, I guess. I hate my job for many reasons – mostly because it’s not what I want to be doing and is beneath me. But my mgmt blows so I’m going nowhere. My dream job is to work at [name omitted] but I’ve been trying to get a job there for almost 5 years with no luck. Found out yesterday that yet another job they interviewed me for went to someone else (which set off my downward spiral). Overall, I am not miserable (my basic needs are met) but I have few moments of joy. I keep wondering how I got here. No relationship, no family of my own, a job that doesn’t suit me… Worst part is that I can’t seem to change it. I either don’t know how or I’ve tried repeatedly and failed. I’m pretty sure I’m going to grow old and die alone, and die penniless. This is where my head has been at for quite a while.

Oh, and most of my friends who live nearby (that I could see in person) never contact me (I always have to contact them) – which makes me feel like shit because these are people I used to spend all my time with. On top of that, because most of them have kids, they no longer include me in things we all used to do together.”

It’s as if people forget I exist. Can I blame them?

Wish I could shake this.

Quirk can kiss my dimpled white ass

Seriously.  I find dealership service centers to be immoral on a good day.  At times, criminal even.  Below is the letter I fired off to GM, the Better Business Bureau, and the dealership itself.  This reminds me of the Best Buy clusterfuck… dear lord, I am so exhausted.

 

To Whom It May Concern:

I am writing to express my dissatisfaction with the service provided to my Saturn vehicle by GM/Chevrolet. This service, or lack thereof, has cost me money and threatens my safety and well-being, as I am not currently driving a safe vehicle.

Here is what happened:

1) In June 2009, I purchased a 2008 Saturn Astra. The vehicle was brand new with 14 miles on it.

2) In 2011, my horn stopped working. On July 29, 2011 I brought my car to Quirk Chevrolet in Manchester, NH – the local GM branch that was servicing Saturn vehicles. They informed me that there was a technical service bulletin for this vehicle, and “fixed” the horn free of charge. According to the invoice, the bulletin doc id# was 2551417. (I have not yet been able to locate this bulletin id or its description anywhere online.)

3) Despite the “service” I received, I continued to periodically have issues with the horn, as well as the radio controls located on the steering wheel. I was reluctant to bring it back to Quirk because, when I called to ask about the problem, I was told that I would be charged a diagnostic fee until they could determine if it was the “exact same issue” I had before. Quirk’s diagnostic fee is $95 – a price I could not afford to take a chance on.

4) I noticed that, when the horn did not work, it correlated with the radio volume control on the steering wheel (right hand side) not working. If I tried to raise the volume and could not, I immediately knew the horn was not functioning.

5) At the start of this year, the horn (and volume control) ceased to work at all. I knew I could not put it off any longer. (Unfortunately, my mechanic was unable to do the work. He indicated that he thought it was a problem with the transmission between the horn signal and the modem of my vehicle. An idea that Quirk NEVER brought up, btw.) I went back to Quirk.

6) On March 8, 2014, I went to Quirk’s service center. I explained the situation, including the detail that when the volume control did not work, neither did the horn. I paid a $95 diagnostic fee, and they looked at my car for over 3 hours. I was told by my liaison, Fred, that I needed a switch in my steering wheel. I then paid another $54.98 for the “switch”. I had to wait for the part to arrive, so it was not until March 22, 2014 that my car was “fixed”. On that day, I paid another $66.50 for labor. Total cost to me was $216.48.

7) The very next day (Sunday), I drove to the grocery store. I tried to raise the volume on the radio and it did not work. Neither did my horn. I called Quirk the following Monday and was told to bring it back.

8) I brought it back in on March 28, 2014 and that is when I discovered, from talking with Fred, that the “switch” they replaced was for the radio control only. They did not do any repair to fix the horn because the horn worked when they looked at it. Fred also tried to charge me another $95 to look at my car again. I told him that I was not paying that amount because they obviously had not fixed the problem that I originally brought my car in there for. Quirk was unable to do anything at this time because, once again, the horn was working.

9) On April 22, 2014, my horn was not working (again). I immediately drove it to Quirk. Unfortunately, it started working on the way there. Once again, they could do nothing. But I was told that they would research service bulletins, etc. I am not sure why they did not do this from the beginning. I told them this was important, as it is a safety hazard. I have no idea when my horn will or won’t work!

10) I still have not heard from Fred or anyone else at Quirk.

At this point, I am very upset. I paid over $200 to have a “switch” replaced that I probably did not need. I say that because the radio control STILL does not periodically work. THE SAME EXACT PROBLEMS WITH THE HORN AND THE RADIO STILL EXIST.

The horn in my vehicle still periodically does not work. And I do not have time to drive to Quirk every time it happens. I have a job. Where I need to make money to pay for repairs I don’t need, evidently.

I am extremely disappointed with the fact that Quirk is unable to help me and seems unwilling to help. I am upset that my safety is at risk because Quirk was too lazy to look up technical service bulletins (I recently found one poking around on my own – SB-10276 indicates a problem with loose wiring in the Saturn Astra that could cause the horn to periodically not function properly). I am horrified I’ve had to shell out as much money as I have for a repair I most likely did not need. I am saddened that it is just this type of scenario that makes me despise dealership service centers. I can assure you, I will never set foot there again.

The exception would be if 1) you arranged for me to be refunded the money I have spent that I clearly did not need to spend because nothing has been fixed, and 2) you promised me the problem WOULD BE FIXED PERMANENTLY.

I recommend that you train your service staff to be more thorough and to care more about the safety of your customers.

Sincerely,

THIS BITCH (no, I signed my real name)

 

 

Seriously, scammers? Don’t bother calling me.

.

This is a new one…

.

Caller: May I speak with the person who would be responsible for using the computer in the household?

Me: That would be me.

Caller: I’m calling from Microsoft Office business (blah blah) and your computer has been sending error messages.

Me: Really?  So, Microsoft has been getting error messages from my computer?

Caller: Yes.  You will need to go and make sure your computer is on.  It has been receiving viruses.

Me: So, you have been getting these messages from my Microsoft Office applications?

Caller: Yes, I am calling from Microsoft Office services and we have been receiving these warnings.

Me: Just to be clear, you are getting these error messages from the Microsoft tools on my computer?

Caller: Yes.  Your computer has been breached and we need to act fast.

Me: You do know that I don’t have Microsoft on my computer, right?

*click*

.

Do people actually fall for this shit?

.

Rock & Shock ’em

Yesterday I went to Rock & Shock.  I am not sure how to describe it, but it is geared towards horror fans.  It consists of vendors with goods to sell, celebrity guests signing autographs, plus panels and discussions.  I went with Shalisha and Corey – probably my only friends who watch horror movies.

.

*Note: I can thank my mom for my love of horror movies AND my imperviousness to being scared.  And probably a few neuroses.

.

I had so much fun!

First of all, when we walked in there was a huge booth dedicated to Troma merchandise.  Hallelujah, Redneck Zombies!!

It was so exciting that I found myself acting oddly cheerful.  For example, I saw a 3 3/4″ figurine and started squealing, “Look at the tiny Leatherface!  Look at him!  Who’s the tiny Leatherface, who is?” – as if I was talking to a toddler.

And not 5 minutes later, I beckoned to Corey to come look at the Extreme Horror booth’s featured movie “Fetus” and exclaimed, “Look!  It was banned in Germany!  You know how much you love movies banned in Germany!”

extreme is right

We were told Germans don’t take kindly to movies featuring decapitated fetuses.

.

Other items seen at vendor booths:

a birdeater tarantula (fuck no)

legless lizards (why is that not just called a snake?  no idea)

tiny zombie gnomes (hell yes, I got one)

a giant tortoise (I don’t get it either)

a vintage figure of the Zuni fetish doll from “Trilogy of Terror” (and all I could do was keep screaming, “it’s life sized!  it’s life sized!”)

my name is "He Who Kills"

He may be small but he will ruin your night.

.

The highlight for me was getting autographs!

The first one we got was Laurence Harvey – he of Human Centipede 2.  One of the most graphically disturbing movies I’ve ever seen.  It makes the first Human Centipede look like a Disney movie.  (I said that to Laurence Harvey and he looked at me and said, “Oh yes”.  Creepy?  Oh, yes.)  Shalisha almost cried because he scared her so much.  She took my picture with him, and, unbeknownst to me, he whipped out a stapler for the photo (see the movie to get the significance – if you dare).  This caused Shalisha to shake in fright and all the pics to be slightly blurry.

He was very nice, however.  At least, I think he was.  Here’s how he signed my movie:

what.  the.  fuck.

“I’ll be thinking of you (with barbed wire in my hand!)” – CREEPY
The heart was a nice touch, tho.

.

I was the most tongue tied when I spoke with David Naughton.  This is most likely because I kept vaguely insulting him.

I love David Naughton – of “American Werewolf in London“, Dr. Pepper commercials, and a hardly watched 70’s TV show called “Makin’ It”.  In an attempt to express this love, I started off with, “I know I don’t look this old, but I watched your TV show Makin It.”  This old.  He gently said, “I don’t look that old to have made that show.”  Me: “No, YOU DON’T.”  Shalisha told him I made her watch the video of him singing the theme song (of the same name) so then I said, “You were a Renaissance man!” (were?  were??)  “You ARE one.  You are one NOW.”

Jesus.  Just shoot me now.

David Naughton, if you read this, I AM SO SORRY.

what a douche I am

David Naughton – very nice, and talented, and willing to pose with a douchebag

.

I was equally as excited to meet Danny Trejo!  Who is so cute you could put him in your pocket!  Until Shalisha reminded me he might cut me.

He was very gracious.  He even insisted we get a group photo!  And I would not budge one inch from him when we did it.  I was gonna have me some Danny action.

squeeeeeeeeee!!

looks nice, kicks ass

.

The last autograph I got was….are you ready?… ANTHONY MICHAEL HALL.

YES.  IT WAS.

Holy hell.  I was not prepared for him to seem so…. tall.  And soft spoken.  And genuine.

Seriously, his handshake was friendly.  His eye contact was unwavering.  Sincere.

Perhaps this is why, after he shook my hand and sat down, I blurted “I love you!”.  And I did it in a tone that said, “let’s just get this out in the open…I love you”.  He smiled graciously.

But.  I.  Kept.  Going.

Because.  Because I remembered how he was the iconic geek boy and then one day – BAM! – he was not.  I think it was when I saw “Edward Scissorhands” that I first noticed AMH had filled outIn a good way.

So, I said, “you know, as you got older, you got better and better looking”.

He replied, “that’s very nice of you to say”.  I insisted that I could not possibly be the only person who said this to him, but he still thanked me as if it was the first time he’d ever heard it.  Maybe it was.  I don’t know.  I cannot even think because I was talking to ANTHONY MICHAEL HALL.

And you guys?  His eyes are the most incredible blue.  Like, I may have visited heaven when I looked into them.

ANTHONY MICHAEL HALL!

What’s important here is that ANTHONY MICHAEL HALL IS TOUCHING ME.

.

All in all, I’d say it was a great day!  Can’t wait until next year!

.

.

7 Days of Positive Thoughts – Day 6

Almost nearing the end of the 7 days!

.

Day 6 Positive Thought:  When people band together towards a goal, they can do amazing things.

.

Today, I participated in one of the Out of the Darkness walks that are put on by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.  It is a sobering event to participate in because, as you stand in a crowd of hundreds of people, you realize that most everyone there has lost someone to suicide.

The fact that there were hundreds of people is sad.  At the same time, it is encouraging to see so many people support a cause that is often surrounded by awkwardness and overtones of shame (though it should not be).  By banding together, everyone at the walk I went to raised close to $50,000.  That is money that will go toward raising awareness and providing resources for people at risk.  It is incredible that shared tragedies can spur this much action.  That is really the beauty of the human spirit, isn’t it?

.

So, the Day 6 post is going to contain a bonus.  I am also going to list some things from my day that reminded me life is worth living:

  • People singing openly in a crowd, albeit potentially embarrassing, is an act of pure joy.
  • Running is starting to be fun.  Especially when running away from the joyous singers.
  • I love my running pants.  I never want to take them off.
  • Fair food is awesome.
  • Fair food is awesome. (so nice I said it twice)
  • Animals are cute.  Baby animals are off the charts cute.
  • Watching little kids watch animals reminds you of what it’s like to just live in a constant state of wonder.
  • Napping with my cats is the best thing ever.

.

7 Days of Positive Thoughts – Day 5

Wow.  I really suck at this posting daily thing.  I need to post for days 5 and 6.

.

Day 5 Positive Thought:  Rainy days are perfect for relaxing.

.

I love rainy days.  Yes, I love them for the wistfully romantic overtones of rain on the window while someone stares pensively into the cloudy sky.

.

But I love them more because they give me the chance to putter around my house in fuzzy socks and lounge about reading a book without feeling any guilt for not being outside (which I distinctly feel when the weather is sunny and brisk).

The Carpenters were crazy to let rainy days get them down.  Eddie Rabbitt had it right when he said he loved a rainy night.  Go figure.

.

7 Days of Positive Thoughts – Day 3

Ooh, I am hedging into day 4…it’s very late.  But, here goes…

Day 3 Positive Thought:  Sometimes I exceed my own expectations.

.

I never thought I’d run.  For anything.  I figured I’d have to be chased by an axe murderer or running from a fire to… RUN.  But this is apparently not the case.

Today, I did more than I could have thought possible.  For me, anyway.  And it is truly amazing.

.

Every time I think I know my limits, I prove myself wrong.

.

7 Days of Positive Thoughts – Day 2

Day 2 Positive Thought:  Sometimes something good can turn into something awesome.

.

A few days ago, I made pumpkin fudge.  I mean, seriously, come on!  Pumpkin.  Fudge.  What is not to love?

And, as tasty as it turned out to be, it ended up being very soft.  Not “fudge”-like.  Well, yes and no.  Did I still cut off a piece and eat it?  You betcha.

But it was soft.  I suspect that I did not get the temperature high enough.  (I was not planning to ever own a candy thermometer, but, considering that I am still unemployed, maybe I should.)

.

Knowing that only the texture was the issue, I went online to find out if there was a solution to this problem.

Turns out there isn’t (at least not when you’re already done and have poured the fudge).

But there is….

.

Someone online (more than one someones) suggested just melting the fudge back down and using it as a sauce.  As in, “hell, might as well just go liquid all the way and pour that shit on something”.

Which.  Is.  Just.  What.  I.  Did.

.

When I was grocery shopping today, I picked up a pint of vanilla ice cream.

And then I brought it home and put some in a bowl.

Then I grabbed a chunk of my too-soft fudge and heated it up.

Then I poured it over my ice cream.

Then I died and went to heaven.

Because IT WAS FRIGGIN AWESOME.

.

So, because of a small error on my part, I had the most delicious fall treat of ice cream with pumpkin topping.  Ever.

.

7 Days of Positive Thoughts – Day 1

I was a stronger person when I was 18 years old.  Seriously.

When I was 18, I did not know enough yet to fear the outcome of things.  I expected the best so I was not hesitant and doggedly forged ahead.  This meant that, more often than not, the best actually happened.

Time goes by, and I am bogged down by repeated disappointments and the expectation that bad things will happen.  And this is perhaps my biggest problem.

.

For the next 7 days, including today, I am going to think like my 18 year old self and find the positive side of my day.  Even if it is something small, I am going to embrace it – I am going to clutch onto it like it’s a French Toast and Bacon cupcake.

.

So, bring on the feel-good stuff!  I’m ready!

.

Day 1 Positive Thought:  Everyone loves cheesy Halloween stuff, especially my mom.

.

I have to send a package to my mom, so I decided to find a couple of Halloween doo-dads to send along as well.  Enter Big Lots.

I found two things:

1) A pair of eyeballs that are attached to a suction cup so they can be hung in your window.  The “ON” switch turns them into lighted beacons of multi-colored doom!  I hope it scares the candy right out of the trick-or-treaters!

2) A mummy candle holder that holds a tealight.  I wrote a note to my mom stating that I got her a mummy candle holder because she’s my “mummy”.  Get it?  *chortle chortle*

SHE IS GOING TO FLIP OVER THESE!

.

Find your positive thought today!

.

No one is chasing me and nothing is on fire.

I started doing the Couch to 5K program a few weeks ago.  The basic idea is that you gradually go from no running to being able to run a 5K.  It’s an interval training program and I think it’s brilliant.

But I still hate running.  I have not learned to love it.  Yet.

I asked a friend who runs how long it will take before I have that “addiction” that runners have.  She said she did not want to tell me because she did not want to discourage me.  So, I am just going to assume it takes six years.  GAAAAAAAHHHH.

.

Fortunately for me, I have someone to run with.  This is very motivating.

This is exactly what I said to my running partner this morning:

I am glad I have you to run with, because, if I didn’t, I would not have gotten up this morning.  Furthermore, every time I ask you to run, I really don’t want to.  Every time you ask me to run, I really don’t want to.  And every time you ask if we’re still on for our next running date, I want to say no.  But I do it anyway.

.

But, no worries.  I am still running.  And it still sucks.

.