Friday, November 7, 2008

Too many blogs - interesting morning.

I haven't decided whether to to delete the old blogs or just move them over here, but's its much neater to just have one place for everything. So, here it is. This will be the place for the blogging and the subject matter will be...everything.

I had a morning on Wednesday that reads like a sit-com script. I woke up a bit later than usual, because I was playing golf with the rest of the Engineering team for a "team builder" rather than going into the office that day. However, I did have to run an errand first.

The water bill now comes every two months, and I had not paid the most recent bill, mistakenly thinking that it wasn't be due for another month. Well, I got the RED ALERT notice from the city explaining that my water would be shut off on Friday if I did not come down to the office and pay the bill in person... alas it was too late to mail it. Unfortunately i had left the notice with the payment information at my office. This would prove to be a forgetful oversight that would set a whole chain of absent-minded numbness into motion.

Rather than boot up my computer to find the information online, I just called 411 to get the number of the water department. Just as the operator went to connect me, I was disconnected. I called back. Same thing...weird. On the third call I was finally the California Water Conservation Committee. Um, ok, slightly annoying. I finally got the right number. If you want to hear the most over annunciated, slow spoken, strangely accented automated recording menu EVER please call (619)515-3500. You will hear a woman that sounds like she is talking to a 3 year-old retarded refugee.

Resisting the temptation to gouge out my eardrums with a barbeque fork, I navigated my way through the menu and spoke to a person who gave me the downtown address where I can go pay my bill. It turns out to be in a high rise and street parking wasn't readily available nearby. I opted to just pay to park in the garage. I get up to the office, and wait in a longer than expected line for about 15 minutes, only to be told at the window that this office only accepts debit...just checks. Sigh. The clerk tells that the city Treasurer's office will accept cash and credit.

So, I pay the $5 minimum parking fee, and head down to the city Treasurer's office...just a few blocks away. Apparently i was a bit distracted because the next thing I know, I have run a red light into the middle of an intersection on a one way street. An elderly woman in a slow moving Chevy Cavalier is able to hit the breaks and bring her car to a halt just inches from from T-boning me. But then her foot slips off the brakes and she does, in fact, t-bone me. CLUNK. I am now in the middle of the intersection and the other cars start honking while I try to pantomime to her to back her car up. She doesn't get it and just stares at me blankly. I roll down my window and tell her its better for her to back up so they we can avoid damaging our collided vehicles any further. She doesn't get it and just stares at me blankly. More horns...mad faces...increasing tension. Fuck it, I go ahead and back up to the ear-piercing sound of her license plate scraping through my passenger side door. Yay, a slight dent and touch up just turned into a panel replacement. Woot. We pull over and she looks at the front of her car, which is dented and torn to shit. She says there is no damage and that she is fine with just driving away. "Was this already like this?" I asked. She nodded. Cool.

I make it over to the Treasurer's office and parking is even more of a scarcity over here. I see a yellow zone and grab it, knowing that I will only be right inside on the first floor for a few minutes. I run up to the door to find a note on the door, "Be back in 10 minutes". I wait 5 or 6 minutes with a few other people before just deciding to scrap the whole idea and head to the golf course. After all, I can come back this afternoon. Gone not more than 7 minutes, I return to my car to find a parking ticket tucked neatly under my windshield wiper blade. Radical, best morning ever.

Whatever, lets go play golf and forget about this. Headed down first ave toward the 5, my car reminds me that I have a few drops of gasoline left.I stop at the Exxon near the 5 ramp. I start pumping and then head inside for a Clif bar and Energy drink... my version of breakfast. I return to my car, hop in and drive away.

Ca-Clunk. BANG.

Luckily gas hoses have a quick release coupling that snaps the hose off under enough pressure and closes a valve. This helps prevent idiots like me from incinerating the whole place. I drive back to the pump...dragging the hose, undetected by the attendant, and reattach the coupling. The guy at the other pump is just staring, mouth agape. I finish filling up, and laugh at the hysterical look on the witnesses face, and then laugh even louder as I notice I've added yet another dent to my car.

If this is what I am like now, I cringe to think about me at 65.

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