Saturday, May 28, 2011

Llama Saliva and My Imminent Death

     My life thus far can be tracked through a steady series of minor inconveniences and odd situations. I never realized I was different in this respect until other people started noticing. I mean we're talking ridiculous things that normal people shouldn't have to worry about happening as they go through their day. Combine these with the fact that I am extraordinarily accident prone and it's a dangerous combination. Examples you say?
       -A llama spit on my windshield once.
    "Were you parked in a field?"
     "In the countryside?"
       " In Argentina?"
     No friends, I was not. I was in the middle of a city, stopped at a light in three lanes of traffic outside a Wal-Mart.
     - Last week I came within inches of running over an endangered animal- the national bird no less- which just happened to be sitting in the middle of the road at four in the afternoon just, you know, chilling.*

              *not that I would have felt too guilty for hitting it. I'm sorry but if you have the gift of flight and STILL get hit by a car, that's on you.

    -  I dislocated my knee while..... wait for it........ walking.

  - I currently have three bruises on my shin from tripping over a shake-weight.
           "Do you own a shake-weight?" 
                             - No.

            Do shake-weight's actually work?"
                             -Don't change the subject.

     I have several years worth of these examples if you would like more, but suffice it to say I'm growing slightly concerned.
     I can't decide if I should be worried that these events will eventually culminate in a ridiculous accident ultimately causing my death, or if I will just end up paying twice as much for my health insurance because they'll finally figure out how to qualify "slightly cursed" as a pre-existing condition.
   You can say it's all in my head. You can give me examples showing these things happen to everyone. But I have evidence, witnesses, documentation. Ask my sister- the odds are uncomfortably high that my name will be in the paper under this headline:
       "Freak Accident Takes Life: Giant stuffed bunny catches fire by magnifying glass, causes nearby water buffalo to panic, stampedes science lab releasing toxic gas, civilian hit by car while crossing street to avoid smell."

      Just know that as I step unwittingly into the path of that Prius, my last thought will probably be:
                          "Crap did I turn off the coffee pot?"

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

My passive aggressive response to a well-meant comment.

          This post is dedicated to a wonderful friend of mine who, after one too many shots of tequila decided to point out that I "should put something of substance on your blog..... like a recipe, or fashion tips... because right now it's kinda funny but seems a little where is it going?".
         Well my dear, to you I dedicate this Sassy Cow.

She doesn't care what anyone thinks. ;)

P.S. A real post is on it's way I promise. 

P.P.S. Yes this is a stalling technique- but come on the cow is cute right? You like the cow. 

Sunday, May 22, 2011

We Apologize for the Convenience: Special Edition

     A Comprehensive Guide to Shopping: For the Woman at the Center of the Universe.
       It has become apparent from people I have conversed with over the last several years that customer service people are out to trick you. It is my understanding that normal humans hate special people like you. 
        They are jealous of your looks, money, husband, sense of style, how big your teeth are, how small your dog is, how many bathrooms you have in your house, you name it. They know you are better than them and they don't like it. As a result they do things in stores- things most people don't even now about or notice- just to stop you from being happy and getting all of the most special things- things you deserve at very low prices. 
       Well grab you Juicy Couture clutch and tiny dog and start shopping with confidence, because now you've got the inside scoop on how to get the best of a system designed to stop you from having everything you deserve. And remember: you always deserve better than everyone else. 
    Todays topic is Towels– absorbent cloth or paper for wiping and drying something wet, as one for the hands, faceor body after washing or bathing.
      Here are the basic guidelines for tackling this tricky section.
        - Prices: The pricing system is designed to fool you. They want to trick you into paying more for things than they are actually worth. But if you really pay attention you can see how it works....
        You will notice that there are signs posted directly in front of each kind of towel with a list of prices. These prices are in fact for the towels they are directly in front of. They are not the prices for the section of towels on the opposite wall, the special ones you saw advertised on TV, or the set of shelves you saw in aisle 6. I know, it's craziness right?! Who could have possibly thought up this confusing system?
       - Size: Ever noticed how these towels are folded up so you can't see the whole thing? How are you supposed to tell if all the towels you're picking out are the same? How much time have you spent unfolding every single towel in the area just to make sure they will all look the same on your silver plated towel bar at home, all the while knowing the employees are cackling in their meth house/break-room over successfully making you late for your pedicure? 
       Here's a super secret time saving tip for you: The sizes listed on the sign in front of the towels is the actual size of the towels! So it turns out there is no need to unfold every single towel in that section to verify that they are the same size! These towels are not handmade by some lazy old Indonesian woman with a set of crochet hooks and bad eyesight- they're stamped out in a factory and inspected individually by a convicted felon whose only job is to make sure that every towel in your house is the exact same size! Isn't that a relief? 
       -Organization: Just to throw you off, these towels are all organized by type rather than from least special to most special. That is to say, the towel in front is the same as the towel at the very back of the shelf directly behind it. So it's safe to assume that if you don't like the towel on the front of the shelf, you probably won't be happy with the one behind it, or the one behind that one, or the one behind that one.
        "It all seems too easy." you say. "What's to stop someone from hiding the towel of my dreams at the back of the row, safely concealed behind all the mundane towels only fit for regular people?"
     Well I'm going to let you in on a well kept secret in the retail business- None of these employees know how special you are! To them, you're just an average customer out shopping for towels for your less than spectacular abode. Because they don't recognize you, they didn't hide those "special people only" towels from you out of jealousy and spite. 
       "How can they NOT tell how special I am?" you ask? Well let's just say what you've heard about retail employees is true. I know, you don't want to think it- it's sad and above all inconvenient for you, but I'm about to confirm all of your suspicions: 
           They are dumb. 
       You knew it all along right? Of course you did! That's why you have to talk so slowly to them, and explain their own coupon policies to them. They are like sad little children who don't know how to price things or complete the return of your used toilet brush without a hassle. They also can't do math nearly as well as you can they? When you calculate 20% off in your head it's radically different than what they claim it should be! 
      "So how can I win?" you cry! 
       It's easy! The key is to interact with them as little as possible. As long as you don't draw attention to yourself they won't recognize you as a special person. Now that you have these inside tips on how their secret little system works, you won't have to try to force one of them to explain it to you. You can just waltz in there and pick out those "special people" towels right off the shelf because those sad little employees never had time to hide them from you! 
        This completes the towel section of our guide. We'll be back soon with the inside scoop on everything you need to know about shopping for your special home. Join us in discussing topics such as:
    -A Conspiracy in disappointment: How to tell if the duvet cover inside the package really looks like the picture on the front.
    - Why hand mixers have an on/off switch- and how to successfully operate it.
    -The well kept secret of self-cleaning sponges: what your maid doesn't want you to know.


Friday, May 20, 2011

We Apologize for the Convenience- adventures in customer service.

     Welcome to the first ever edition of customer service stories that you can all enjoy, identify with, and utilize as guidelines on how to make (or ruin) your cashier's day. As long as it's not me, I don't really care anymore- the empathy part of my brain suffered a sever injury from overuse in 2009 and hasn't been the same since.

     Todays lesson: Over-sharing.
  Most of us are aware of the boundaries involved whilst conversing with others. Certain subjects, for instance, should be avoided when exchanging pleasantries with strangers. However, because many people seem fuzzy on what makes someone a "stranger", I will include some helpful tips to help you identify these people.
   A stranger is most likely:
           - Anyone you have never talked to before, regardless of how many times you have seen them from a distance.
           - Anyone whose name you do not know.*
                   *Seeing someones name-tag does not count as "knowing" that person.
            - Any salesperson that you do not also have a personal relationship with outside their workplace*
                   * Running into them once at Wal-Mart does not qualify as a personal relationship.
            - Anyone who starts a conversation with the phrase "Thank you for choosing _______ how can I help you today?"

       If you're still not sure if someone is a stranger or not, try this phrase:
            "My husband died today so I'm just trying to find a container to put all his model ships in that will still fit in the coffin." 
           If the person in question responds with:
                           - Awkward silence
                           - Mumbled apologies while avoiding eye contact
                           - Nervous laughter
                           - Giant, overly-pleasant smile while reaching for the phone
         This person is most likely a stranger.
      Now that we have identified all the strangers in your life, lets talk more in depth about the concept of over-sharing.
      Over-sharing involves the sharing of personal thoughts, opinions, or experiences with a stranger, such as a cashier, that are not directly related to the purchase you are making or, if directly related, are sensitive subjects that should not be discussed with anyone that is not a close personal friend, a trusted family member, or your doctor. These subjects can include:
                - Medical conditions involving: warts, boils, pustules, bodily fluids, catheters, genitalia, drainage shunts, the digestive system, the reproductive system, the urinary system, or your bowels.
                - Your sex-life, regardless of how well or poorly it's currently going.
                - Anything involving hair not on your head. This includes but is not limited to: Back hair, pubic hair, chest hair, and nipple hair.
               - Gossip involving members of your family. ie; "My cousin Veronica? She slept with her sister's boyfriend's older brother. Can you believe that?"*
               *It is important to remember that a stranger would have no problem believing this because they have never met your cousin Veronica.
                - The recent death of a loved-one.*
                        *It's particularly awkward for a cashier to offer you a new odor-absorber when you have just mentioned finding you uncle dead in his apartment. 
     I understand this can be confusing. "That could be anything!" you say. "It's so intricate!" you say. To help you out, here are some direct examples of over-sharing that I have personally witnessed/ experienced.

        - A detailed description of your weekly task of shaving your husband's back hair.
        - A play-by-play of the events surrounding your grandmother's death
        - Asking a cashier if the product you have selected is effective at removing blood from the backseat of a car.
        - Prefacing a conversation with "I'm in the area because my sister only has three weeks left to live and I thought it would be nice to redecorate."
         - Describing to a salesperson the exact nature of the fluid coming from the lump on you foot in order to help them select the antibacterial soap that is right for you.
         - Telling the cashier that you're just wasting time while waiting for your court appearance in a few hours because some bitch in your apartment building accused you of attempted rape but it was totally her fault because she was being all "come-hither" and you were just trying to be friendly and that dimly-lit stairwell seemed like a perfectly legitimate place to get to know a person and maybe take them out for coffee later you know?

             Over-sharing is an awkward experience for strangers. And while it can be fun to do every so often for entertainment purposes, it is very important to avoid doing it on accident. Not only does it have the potential to at the very least ruin someone's day and at most end in the phoning of the police, it also destroys all potential for a future friendship with that person, not matter how hard you try later-on.
           Please take this lesson to heart and make an effort to stop ruining your poor cashier's day.  =)


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

So Much For That- how I already lied to you.

       Remember how I said I would try to write daily? Well it turns out having two jobs is going to make that extra difficult. 

       Since I'm used to being a disappointment (See: my childhood) this isn't a big deal for me. But since some of you are not used to being disappointed, (although you should be if we are at all close) I intend to regain your good graces with this drawing of a pig. 

Look at him. Look how happy he is. Now aren't you happy again?

Monday, May 16, 2011

Commuting is Fun! -tales of vehicular misfortune on the road to mediocrity.

My car is magic. Or cursed. Or there could be a completely rational explanation. Here’s what’s happening: my iPod is hooked up to my car through an FM Transmitter- a fundamental piece of technology for anyone whose car was built before 2003. It works fine- exceptionally in fact- until I reach for my coffee mug. The moment I get my mug out of the cup holder and anywhere between a quarter of the way and halfway to my lips, the transmitter shuts off. I am then faced with the decision to either put my coffee back down and use my one free hand to hold down the power button for an oddly long amount of time to get it to turn back on, or finish the sip (see: gulp) of glorious coffee that I desperately need, all the while missing moments of my podcast (which by the way is the only thing that keeps me up on current events- did you guys hear they killed Bin Laden?) because of course, the iPod won’t stop playing when the transmitter shuts off- that would be too convenient.

Any sensible person will have come up with several solutions by now.

“Just buy a new FM Transmitter” you say? Let’s keep in mind that I am incredibly cheap/moderately poor, and even on Amazon those things are like twelve bucks.

“But Baylee,” you say “couldn’t you just drink your coffee at home, or wait until you’re at work?” The problem here is that along with being cheap/poor I am also really lazy ( I know, I’m getting more attractive by the second you don’t have keep your admiration of me secret) and doing either of those things would require me to get up at least ten minutes earlier every day. Also drinking in the car is what makes driving fun!*

So you can imagine the frustration I go through every morning on my way to work as my desperation for caffeine is pitted against my annoyance at the sound of white noise continuously cutting off one of the Sklar Brothers mid-analogy. Combine this with the underlying ridiculousness that my only problem is the ten inches of air my coffee cup has to travel through to get to my mouth being an apparent magical bubble whose only job is to disturb radio signals.

The point is I was dealing with all of this the way I usually do- by doing my job while keeping it all bottled up inside and smiling at strangers like I imagine a normal person without magical bubbles in their car would do. Then yesterday while I was trying to rig the power button of the transmitter with my Altoids Tin I almost hit a black cat when it ran right across the road in front of me. I have since developed a bit of a twitch.

*I know that sentence is going to be taken out of context. I even took it out of context and I wrote it. But you get me right?

Hi Mom!

Hello everyone! 
 Due to popular demand (the two people I talked to on Facebook) I have started this blog. If it works out it will be fun, but if it fails the rejection will cause me to spiral into a depression-hole so big nothing but astronomical amounts of cash will pull me out. <-----Take this as incentive to become my followers.

 Hopefully this blog will be about many things to which you can all relate. It will be about my work in customer service, which is mostly boring, sometimes horrifying, and every once in a while downright ridiculous.
  It will also be about my experience as a poor college student. And by this I mean awkward moments and odd observations, not the chemical properties of the dust storms on the planet Mars and whatnot.

 It will be full of complaints. About people, about the weather, about current fashion trends, but mostly about annoying things my brain does when I'm just trying to be normal.

               *Note to my mother: Since I know you will most likely stumble upon this blog in the future I will apologize now for anything that might upset you in future posts and to remind you that any threats of homicide/suicide are not to be taken too terribly seriously.