Caught in the act

I spent most of this afternoon reading in the backyard.  It was peaceful for a while, but then the neighbors starting chatting in their yard, a blower and a lawn mower started in another yard, and that cat traipsed through the rear flower bed.  Too much traffic.  I gave up and went inside.

Not long after, John called me to the window to see the same cat hanging out on our gravel path, settled in and acting like he owns the place (as cats do).

Photographic evidence:

From the door

From the door

From the edge of the deck

From the edge of the deck

Leaving after I got too close

Leaving after I got too close

Angry with me for making him leave

Angry with me for making him leave

Of course, he left the yard, I went inside, and he came right back.  I don’t really care if he hangs out in the yard.  I just don’t want him to treat my yard like a litter box.

Under attack

The universe may have been trying to tell me not to ride my bike today.  Before I left, I had to convince a fairly large spider to get off my front tire.  I convinced it by wheeling my bike around.  The spider wasn’t on the tire anymore, but I don’t know where it went.  I didn’t crush it.

Worse than that, I saw a snake.  It was slithering frantically off the bike path and into the tall grass, and I saw it at the last minute.  I’m pretty sure I didn’t run over its tail, but I did shriek and nearly fall over and crash my bike.  It was a small snake, but it freaked me out.

THEN, last but least scary, a dog charged me, growling and snapping.  It was on a leash, and I was racing by, so I was probably in more danger from the spider that went missing, but still, I flinched.

It’s amazing I didn’t crash my bike today, actually.

Not my cat

There’s a neighborhood cat who uses our backyard as a shortcut several times a day.  This cat, the one we see the most often (not the only one, though), is probably the one responsible for all the cat poop I keep finding while weeding the flower beds.  That’s not a fun discovery when you’re on your hands and knees.  Good thing I wear gloves.

I’m pretty sure he has claimed our yard as his own (I’m not sure he’s a he, but whatever).  The other day, he was sitting on the gravel path when another cat wandered through.  There was no hissing, no spitting, and no fighting.  Just glaring.  There might have been growling.  That other cat hurried on out of there.

I’ll get a picture one of these days.

Gauntlets have been thrown

I like to be outside.  I like the fresh air, I like the scenery, I love the sky.  I just don’t like it when outside touches me.  Personal space, man.  I need it.  You know I take allergy medicine all year, and it does a pretty good job, but I run into minor problems if my skin touches vegetation.  Not all of it, and not all the time, but enough of it and often enough.  I wear gloves and kneel on a towel when I’m weeding because my skin reacts when grass (cut or not) and weeds touch it.  It goes away quickly, and it’s localized (thank goodness it doesn’t spread), but it happens every time.

So aside from weeding being an annoying chore to begin with, I have that to be careful of.  Bugs are the other part I can’t deal with, as (again) you already know.  The outside of our house here is covered in ants.  So far, we don’t have an ant problem inside, but they’re all over outside, and when I was weeding the other day, they kept getting on me.  It’s not a HUGE deal (I was wearing gloves and long sleeves and they were just ants and not the biting kind (I assume because I didn’t get bitten)), but I came inside to shower and change and I found an ant ON MY HEAD, CRAWLING IN MY HAIR.


Sorry, ants.  You started it.

Physical Therapy

The last time I went to the podiatrist, he suggested physical therapy, and today was my first session.  I’ve never done it before.  Well, I’ve never been injured before.  All of my preconceived notions about it can be boiled down to that one scene in the movies when the temporarily paralyzed person (usually from a car accident) is trying to walk again using those parallel bars and being encouraged by the well-meaning and super-peppy therapist.

You know what?  It wasn’t that different.  My physical therapist was super-nice with a normal level of pep.  There’s a big open room that reminds me of a kid’s play room – well, no, that would the best kid’s play room EVER.  It’s more like an elementary school gym for the littler kids with lots of stations.  I didn’t get to use any of them (sad for me), but they looked like fun.  I just walked, stood on one foot, and then stood on one foot on a cushioned pad.  Then she poked and prodded and twisted and pressed and said I’m stiff and weak in some areas, but pretty symmetrical in those deficiencies.  Yay for symmetry?

I have some stretches to do, and I’ll see her again next week.  The goal is to continue resting until the pain goes away and get me running again.  The strengthening should help prevent future pain.  I don’t know how long it’ll be before I can run again yet.  I was afraid to ask (and also, I have a feeling the answer would be that it’s too soon to tell).

Maybe next time she’ll let me play on the fun-looking stations.

Rose garden with actual roses this time

There’s this really nice house I see on my bike ride with a really nice backyard.  The back is all tall wrought-iron fence, and there are rose bushes blooming along the top of the fence every few feet.  Pretty.  The other day I noticed that the yard between the patio and the fence was all dirt, and I briefly wondered what they were going to plant there.  Today as I rode by, I noticed it looked different, but I was a couple minutes past it before I figured out what it was.  (I’m very observant.)  Sod!  They sodded the whole thing.  Maybe it didn’t register because it was still flat?  Very green, very nice.  I might not have noticed at all, or it wouldn’t stuck in my head, except that our yard has fresh sod (fresh from March, I think), and you can still see the edges of each piece.  I wonder how long it takes for it to all mesh together?

Now, have some pretty.









Sitting in comfort

We bought a couch (on Sunday)!  And it arrived today!  And it’s comfortable!  Technically, it’s a double chair (not even a loveseat), but it’s big and it’s cushy, and it’s chocolate brown and kind of stripey/soft corduroy.


We thought about the couch (it was only $100 more), but it was enormous, even bigger than our old couch, and we are not making a purchase of that physical size again until we stop moving around.  This is plenty big enough for the two of us, even with those big cushions on it, and most importantly, it fit through the front door with no issues.

More phone drama

I just can’t get enough of the phone drama, apparently.  Over the weekend, John did some googling and found that yes, our phones ARE unlocked, and yes, our phones CAN work with any carrier.  The solution (according to online sources) is to go to a Sprint store with a repair center, where they will have to add my phone to the network and possibly find me a new SIM card.  We tested that solution today.

At a different Sprint store, I handed my new phone over to a guy who disappeared into a back room with it.  Ten minutes later, he came out and said sorry, your phone isn’t compatible with the Sprint network.  I tried to get him to explain why.  He didn’t know.  I asked him who might know.  He didn’t know.  I asked him to point me in the direction of someone who might know.  He disappeared into the back again.  A techie (I assume) came out to talk to us.

He was much more personable, but the bottom line appears to be that because my phone isn’t ALREADY on Sprint’s list of approved phones, it cannot be added.  (This is the opposite of what two people told me before I made last week’s trip to the Sprint store, which is why I a) bought a phone from someone other than Sprint, and  b) went to the store in the first place.)  He went so far as to say there’s no reason he’s aware of why it COULDN’T be on the list, but he isn’t capable of adding it.  Who is?  Maybe someone in corporate, he says, but no one he or I could get in touch with.  Not one to give up, I pushed a bit more.

Eventually, he entered a ticket with I-don’t-know-who (hopefully not the same I-don’t-know-who from last week), and he says I should know within 72 hours if THEY approved adding my phone to the network.

Sprint may have lost us as customers (after 13 YEARS) either way*.  If they add my phone to the network, we can be lazier about finding another carrier (I’m considering the Project Fi thing with Google), but I think it’ll happen.  If they don’t add my phone, that’s getting done SOON.

*Yes, I started to play the lost customer card, but it only triggered  sales pitch for other phones.  Missing the point, dude.

Sunday reading

I spent about four hours in a coffee shop five blocks from our house just reading.  I could have done that at home, but it was nice to be around people.  Then I came home and kept reading.  Then we watched three episodes of Happy Valley and got all disturbed, but then I went back to my book.  I cannot complain about today.  Or this weekend, in fact.  All of my weekends should go like this, although maybe with less disturbing TV.

With sunglasses on, I feel like I’m in disguise

Game Night was great (of course), and my hair cut today went as smoothly as could be expected.  I really like the salon and my new stylist.  The color is great, and the cut WAS perfect, but David got a little snip-happy in front right at the end.  The cut right before the color is how I think I want it, where it’s longer in the front and the angle from the back is more obvious.


It’ll grow, and I can get it there.  In the meantime, it’s certainly not bad.  It’s just not as much me as I want.  We’ll leave aside that not-me is kind of the point.


Anyway, I like it. 🙂


Game night

Today was better than yesterday, that’s for sure.  Work was okay, I had a nice relaxing lunch with Christina (pho – delicious), and we’re going to spend the evening at Will and Christina’s for our first (hopefully weekly) Game Night!  It’ll be fun, it’ll be relaxing, and I will be doing my best not to be nervous about Saturday’s Big Event.  Tomorrow is the day I finally FINALLY cut my hair and color it.

If I like it, you can have pictures.  If I’m a crying mess because WHAT HAVE I DONE AND WHY WOULD I DO THIS TO MYSELF, there will be no pictures.  Wish me luck!

Can’t win

I went to a Sprint store today to switch my number to the new phone.  The guy got on the phone to I-don’t-know-who at Sprint, and I read my book.  Half an hour later, he told me that my new phone uses the wrong frequencies for the Sprint network.  It can’t be used for Sprint.  I didn’t even know that was a thing.  Apparently, Verizon and Sprint use one set of frequencies and AT&T and T-Mobile use another.  This phone can be added to AT&T or T-Mobile’s network, but not Sprint or Verizon.  Phones can work for one, the other, or both, and I just happened to get one that works with the wrong frequency.

So what are my options?

  1. Stick with Sprint and spend the $400 at Best Buy to get the phone I want.  Return my new phone.
  2. Switch to AT&T or T-Mobile with my new phone.  Will John’s phone (which works on Sprint) work on their network?  I’m pretty sure it would cost more to have us on two different carriers.  His phone works fine, and he’s not ready to give it up.
  3. Switch to Verizon and get a new phone that isn’t a Nexus (and return the one I just got).  Not cheaper than spending $400 at Best Buy in the long run.  Also, why would I do that?
  4. Switch to AT&T or T-Mobile and get a new phone that isn’t a Nexus (and return the one I just got).  Same issues with John’s phone, and also still not cheaper than spending $400 at Best Buy in the long run.  And nonsensical for now.

Are there other options?  I’m too close to it at the moment and SO ANNOYED.  I could insist we both leave Sprint, but we have unlimited data with them, and that seems impossible to get anywhere else (without also getting DirectTV or whatever with AT&T – not interested in that).


It’s here!

My new phone came today!

The good:

  • It’s here!
  • It’s a day early!
  • It turns on!
  • It holds a charge!

The bad:

  • It’s not new, as advertised.  It’s refurbished.
  • It’s not 32GB, as advertised.  It’s 16GB (which is what I have now).

The ugly:

  • I called Sprint to swap my service from my old phone to my new phone (which is what the online chat person told me to do the other day), and the Sprint person the phone told me I can’t do it over the phone or online because I didn’t buy it from a Sprint store.  I have to GO to a Sprint store because only the physical stores have the software needed to enter an individual phone into their system.  I can’t use it until I do that.  UGH.

The fantastic customer service (not from Sprint):

Several days ago, Woot emailed me to say that they’d heard that this shipment of phones included some 16GB phones, and it’s possible I might get one of those instead of the 32GB.  If that were to happen, I should email them and they’ll refund me $40 if I want to keep the phone or the whole amount if I want to return the phone since it’s not what I ordered.  All of that before I even got the phone, just in case it wasn’t right when it arrived.

Today, I got two emails from Woot.  The first was to tell me they’ve already refunded me $75.  The second was to tell me why they refunded me $75: the phone is refurbished, not new, and it’s 16GB.  They got the phones from T-Mobile, and apparently, the shipment details were not correct at the time of the sale.  I can still return it for a full refund AND a $40 credit towards another purchase, if I don’t want this phone.

I have not contacted Woot AT ALL yet.  They have done this all preemptively.  Woot is wonderful.  This is how you run a business.

Is it here yet?

Package tracking is such a tease.  My new phone is being shipped all the way from Long Island.  It hopped over to New Jersey, and then it landed in Ohio, then Iowa, and as of Saturday evening, it was in Nebraska.  Where next?  Why isn’t there an update after Saturday?  Is it still in Nebraska?  We drove here faster than my little phone is moving.  The worst is when you can your package stuck in a post office one town over…and now I’ve jinxed myself.  That is going to happen to me.

I want it now!  Yup, me and Veruca, best buds.

Love/hate relationship with my phone (mostly love)

I LOVE my phone.  I’ve said this before, and I’m sure I’ll say it again.  It’s a Google Nexus 5: it’s the right size, and it doesn’t have any Samsung or Sprint or Verizon or any other crap on it.  I can be as minimal as I want with apps.  It’s pretty, and I like the way it works.


It’s getting old, and it’s not working as well as it used to.  It had that battery problem.  Well, the battery problem is slowly coming back.  It sometimes sends calls straight to voicemail, no ringing.  I only find out I missed a call when I get the voicemail notification.  Sometimes it won’t let me send texts.  Often (like most of the time), when I’m not on wi-fi, I can’t connect to the cellular network for data AT ALL (but I can still make calls).

Well, it’s old, and I should cut it some slack, right?  I wouldn’t (and didn’t) yell at my old dogs when they couldn’t walk as fast as they used to or when I had to carry them outside.

I do love my phone, but when it starts acting up, I treat it badly.  I get so frustrated.  Sometimes I yell.  (I’m so ashamed of myself right now.)  Worst of all, I think about replacing it.  The thing is, I want this phone.  There’s a Google Nexus 6, but it’s bigger.   I don’t want bigger.  There’s a Google Nexus 5x, which is the newer model, but I’m not ready to invest $400 in it yet.  I’ve used the Samsung Galaxy phones for work for years now, and I really don’t like them (although the newest one, the S7, is kind of okay).

Luckily, Woot came to my rescue last week.  There was a day they were selling new (NEW!) Google Nexus 5s for $150.  I bought one, and it should arrive this Thursday.  Replacing my phone with its twin should be okay, right?  It’s not the new model, I’m not giving up on it, I’m just…trading sideways.  I feel a little bad, but I’m also pinning all my hopes on this new phone.  PLEASE ring instead of sending calls to voicemail.  PLEASE let me use my data plan when I’m not on wi-fi.  PLEASE let me send texts normally and receive group texts in real time.  Please?

Wrong people are wrong

Whoever told me that Oregonions Oregonians no, i’m keeping Oregonions never use umbrellas didn’t know what he was talking about.  I was out in the rain today (mostly not on purpose), and I saw four people using umbrellas to keep dry.  The other twenty people were probably just trying to impress somebody.  Or they took the same chance I did and bet wrong.  It was a little bit invigorating to speed along the empty trail with rain pouring down and my favorite songs playing.  I got plenty dirty (bikes kick up a lot of mud in the rain), but I’d do it again.

Then I came home, cleaned up, made scrambled eggs (ALMOST as good as Mel’s), and watched TV.  It was an okay Sunday.  I barely spent any time dreading work tomorrow.  That’s an improvement.


Today was a reading day.  I got up, made my (decaf) coffee, and sat in a chair for nearly two hours reading.  We went out, ran a couple of errands, and when we came back, I tucked myself back into my chair for another few hours to read.

It was wonderful.

John spent most of the day doing computer-y things.  Pleasant, very quiet, and it was raining for the first half of the day and overcast for the rest, so really, the perfect day to stay in and read.  Would have been nicer if our gas fireplace put out any heat, but I guess you can’t have everything.  (Honestly, I didn’t even remember we had one until just now, so I didn’t miss it.)

Maybe I’ll get to do it again tomorrow.

Bad news about our shows

Last night, Will told us the truly terrible news about Agent Carter, one of my favorite shows: it’s been canceled after two seasons.  I’m very sad.  Today, John found out that two characters who left Agents of Shield (we were very unhappy they left) were supposed to get their own show (yay!), but now that’s not happening, either (boo).  Maybe they’ll come back to Shield.

Castle (which we don’t watch anymore, but still – Nathan Fillion) has been canceled, The Muppet Show has been canceled, and The Grinder has been canceled, which is much sadder than the other two.  The Grinder is hilarious.

Galavant, a show I’ve been meaning to watch, has also been canceled.

Networks suck.  Maybe Netflix will pick some of these up.  At least Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Shield, Elementary, and Supernatural will be back.  And it’s not like we don’t have enough TV to watch already, plus a LONG list of shows to add.  Just…I love Agent Carter.