Thursday, June 13, 2013

Quality vs. quality

During the second half of our 5,000 friends weekend we went to a wedding of a former roommate along with lots of our friends from Trevor's masters program.  Because we are procrastinators, or in our defense, often unaware of what day it is, we missed the cutoff date for reserving a room with the discounted wedding rate.  To avoid the $200+ standard hotel room fee (if we were cheap before we are are even cheaper now), we booked a room at the $70 a night Quality Inn a few blocks away.  Sweet deal.

We check in at the lobby and head towards the elevator.  The elevator is a little dim and grimy but as long as the bedsheets and bathroom are clean, who cares about the communal areas right?  (Please let the sheets and bathroom be clean!)

We get into the elevator and press the button for floor two.  The doors start closing. Wow, it is dark in here!....  Crap there are no lights in this elevator!!  Doors close.  Pitch black.  

Then Trev has to go and say "uhh, I don't think we are moving..."

Panic!  Panic! Going to die in a hot, dark elevator!  Where is the alarm button?!  Call 911! 

Then the doors slowly open.  We are now on the second floor.  No more elevators.  Taking the stairs from here on out.

Aside from the light-less elevator, and the fact that:
1) they had no extra blankets (not even at the front desk),
2) they had only one towel in the bathroom,
3) you could only flush the toilet once an hour and
4) by the end of our stay the toilet handle broke off....

I would say it was quality.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Only in California

A few weekends ago we set out on an adventure to see 5,000 friends.  Our first stop is Sonoma county for a 30th birthday party.  We leave after work around 6pm and arrive at our first destination half past midnight.  Besides the time in the car, it is a fairly simple drive: after two blocks turn right on Hollister, go 200 feet then turn left on Turnpike, after 0.25 mile make a left on 101 North.   Drive 300 miles and you're there.  Perfect.  But instead of going straight up the 101 we decide to take a twenty minute shortcut.

We do not yet realize that the short cut includes a toll road.  But once we do realize it was a toll road, we do not yet realize that we have no money.  

How much is the toll?

Five bucks.

Dang, do you have five bucks?

No, do you have five bucks? Let me

Proceed to search the car for five bucks.  We usually keep the car stocked with secret stashes of cash for instances just like this.  And neither one of us can remember using up the last stash that we kept tucked away in the sun visor on the passenger side.  Although now that I mention it, I can remember driving around with a certain friend who was very excited and surprised to find a few dollars while meddling through the car. "Hey I just found money! Is this your guys' money? Did you even know you had this money?"...I wouldn't doubt that he secretly put the  money in his pocket.   It was the same friend who gave us a really nice knife once, and then a couple years later came to visit and found the knife and said "Hey nice knife, Is that the knife I got you?"  Yes, yes it it.  "Do you guys ever even use it? " Yes, yes we do.   We have never seen that knife again.

So here we are, passed the last exit on the freeway before the toll booths.  No turning back now.  All we have is about 25 pennies and a couple of credit cards.  What are the chances California toll booths have wised up and started accepting Visa?  

There are three cash lanes open.  Only one of them currently has a car in it.  So I pull up behind the car at the collector to try to buy us a few extra seconds of Trevor searching through his brief case for spare cash.  Nothing.  Oh well, nothing we can do about it now, but wait....and wait.....and wait...... Jeez what are theses people talking about?!  The car in front of us is talking forever having a 15 minute conversation with the toll booth collector.   California Julie resists the New Jersey Julie's temptations to honk and curse and reverse to get in the the next lane over.  Eventually the car moves on though and it's our turn to have a chat with the tollbooth collector....

Collector:  Sorry about that, guys! How's your night going?!

Uhhh, it's good... Do you, um, take credit card by any chance?

Collector:  No..eeeh we don't, sorry about that.  BUT I did have a gentleman today who gave me an extra $5 and told me to use it on someone nice.  And you seem nice enough! Sooooo..... Have a good night!

Are you freaking kidding me!?  Oh my god, thank you.  

Who gives a tollbooth collector an extra five bucks?!

And what tollbooth collector doesn't just pocket that?!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

A Good ol' Wake 'n' Quake

The other day was  my sister's birthday.   The day started off like any other. My alarm went off around 6:45am, and like usual I was way too tired to move.  I pressed snooze about 15 times, until the alarm no longer responded to the snooze button and continued to go off constantly, getting louder and louder.  I eventually shut it off.  I dozed back off to sleep.  Then about five minutes later I awoke to my second, back up alarm.  I pressed snooze another two or three times, until Trevor started moving... Dang it, I better quit snoozing before I wake him up.  

I roll myself down to the bottom of the bed and silently stare at my dresser.  Yawn.  Stretch.  What to wear? What to wear? Pants? Skirt? Dress? Pants? Skirt? Dress?  I quietly ponder my options for the next 8 minutes or so.  I could wear my purple dress...but I only wear my purple dress with my black leggings.... and I wore my black legging yesterday.  Heck I'm still wearing my black leggings now.  What am I wearing now? Back leggings and a black sports bra.  I kinda look like some sort of ninja jazzercise instructor.

Then the garage door opens.  Trevor and I live in an apartment above a two car garage.  We have a theory that the woman who helps take care of our blind neighbors lives in the garage below us.  We think she pulls the car in at night to sleep and takes it out and parks it back in the driveway in the morning.    So for the garage door to open at this moment is not out of the ordinary.  Only something sounds wrong with the garage door opener.  It's super loud and noisy and it's not stopping.  Hmm, why's the whole house shaking? It could not be a train, we are not close to the tracks.   Hmm, is there an airplane about to crash into the house?  

Nope.  As Trevor chimes in and leaps out of bed "It's an earthquake!!!"  We huddle under the door frame and the shaking ceases relatively quickly.  Uh what to do next? 

 Trevor: "should we go outside?"

Me:  "yea, run!!"

We sprint through the other side of our garage-sized apartment and scurry down the stairs like we are Indian Jones and the temple of doom is collapsing behind us.  Huffing and puffing we make it to the outside world.  We are alive!  Outdoors!  Fresh air! We survived! Phew!  ....and now we are standing outside....alone....alive.... me in my ninja apparel....and Trev in his boxer shorts...Ok we can probably go back inside.

We assess the damage.  Two broken picture frames.  Looking around I am absolutely amazed what with all the junk that we have hoarded in this apartment, that two picture frames were the only things to fall over.  I mean look at this hallway of hell we've got going on here:

Well we got away with it unscathed this time, and hopefully there won't be a next time, but just in case, I went on a massive anti-hoarding campaign in the attic, the closet, the bookcase, and the stairwell (which also seconds as a master closet).

I went through so much junk and made big piles of things for the upcoming garage sale. But there are just too many precious memorabilia that I'm not ready to let go of.  I mean what if one day I have a daughter... She'll eventually be a teenager... And of course she'll be the coolest, weirdest teenager around, and will love all the things I love and will want to dress just like me.  She would be so mad at me for giving away all these cool things!

My Lord of the Rings Legolas shirt:

My sweet ripped jeans which I bought without a single hole or stain on them
earned every one of them

This kinda lame shirt:

BUT it's signed by the whole band, American Hi Fi

"She's just the flavor of the weeeeeek"

My Raritan High School Powder Puff football game jersey:

I was so hard core

Of course, the shirt I made for Trevor on our first Valentine's day:


These really awesome Tommy Hilfiger striped pants:

 My super-stylin' "New Kids on the Block" hat:

My bear wrestling team shirt:

How could I get rid of my Saved by the Bell teen hearthrob shirt:

This is a vintage gem!

This one is just funny:

This one's just too cute:

 Cause I've had these guys since 7th grade:
and even though the elastic is so stretched out that they're too big... it's not too say that I won't grow back into them someday...

This ones always fun to wear:
and was a present from Trevor
Annnnd  some other random crap I also cannot let go of.....

A seat belt belt that I have NEVER worn but have ALWAYS wanted:

 My "Happy Feel Good" tape from March 1998, that I found only after the cassette player in the car broke.

But I know when I get around to buying a new cassette player, this tape is going to make me feel so happy and good....or old and awful.

 A DISCMAN!!!!!  Holy crap I didn't even know we had one of these we cannot get rid of this!!!!!

Macho Man Randy Savage:
I'll never let you go

And... a life size Yao Ming:

too good not to have

Hoarders for life!!!  Watch me have some sort of straight-laced angel child whose favorite color is white...