Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

How do you dress for air travel?

Here are a few airport fashion observations from a recent domestic flight in America. I apologize in advance for the poor picture quality...I had to take them on the sly to avoid agitating the natives.

First of all: Despite the overall silliness of a hat this size, what do you do with it when you get into the airplane? No way there's enough headroom for that sucker.

Second, I was in Cincinnati, not San Juan. This hat did not come from a local souvenir shop. That leads me to believe that he brought it with him. This hat has made it on at least 2 planes. Wowzers.

Ok I'm sorry. There's obviously a lot going on here so let's focus it in. That is an ergonomic neck pillow shaped like a cat. It curls around your neck like a sleeping animal. Ewwww.

I'm headed to Florida (aka the land of jean shorts and embroidered tshirts) this weekend so hopefully I'll have some follow-up shots soon.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007


Oh BBC news...You always provide me with the hard-hitting important news that the American media ignores...

"North Carolina Pair Feud Over Leg"
Tuesday, 2 October 2007

The leg was stored in a smoker after Mr Wood lost his home
A US man who stored his amputated leg in a barbecue smoker that was later auctioned off is locked in a custody dispute with the man who bought it. John Wood's smoker was sold to Shannon Whisnant last week after he fell behind on payments at the storage facility in North Carolina where it was kept.

He wants his leg back but Mr Whisnant says he has a receipt for the smoker's contents and wants to share ownership.

Mr Wood's leg was amputated above the knee after a plane crash in 2004.

He asked to keep the leg so he could be buried as a whole man when he died, and stored it at the facility in Maiden after losing his home.

But when Mr Wood failed to pay the necessary rental fees, the storage company auctioned the smoker and all its contents.

After buying the smoker last Tuesday, Mr Whisnant looked inside and found a man's leg wrapped in a wire screen.

Halloween's just around the corner - the price will go up if I get the leg
Shannon Whisnant

He initially gave the leg to the police, who concluded it had not been removed as a result of a crime and sent it to a funeral home until Mr Wood could pick it up.

But after making money by charging adults $3 (£1.47) and children $1 (49p) to look inside the empty smoker, Mr Whisnant asked for it back.

His request was refused by the funeral home, so he decided to try to persuade Mr Wood to share custody and profits.

"I told him I'd share custody of it..." Mr Whisnant said.

"It's a strange incident and Halloween's just around the corner. The price will go up if I get the leg."

Mr Wood, who now lives in Greenville, South Carolina, has insisted he is not interested in using the leg to make money and plans to travel to Maiden as soon as possible to reclaim it.

"I just think it's despicable," he said.

"I don't mind having the 15 minutes of fame, but I'm not looking to really profit off this thing.

"He's making a freak show out of it."

Having had his offer rejected, Mr Whisnant has threatened to begin legal action if the leg is not returned to him by next week.

He says he has a receipt showing he bought both the smoker and its contents at the auction.

"Everybody knows it's mine, period," he said. "And if anyone tries to take it, I want everything they got."

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

What do you do when your brother is one of these kids?

I've been wrestling with this one for a while now. I think it's time to get it all out in the open. LJ, I'm sorry if you read this champ but it's time for some religion. My brother goes Larping. If you're normal, you have no idea what this means. Even if you're generally abnormal, you probably have no idea what this is.

Upon returning to the homestead a couple of weekends ago, I was informed that my younger brother was camping. Camping? But LJ's an indoor kid I said to myself. Here's an abbreviated version of the conversation with my parents that followed:

Me: "Where is he camping?"
Dad: "Out in western Mass. somewhere."
Me: " Who did he go with? He hates camping."
Mom: (acting cagey and embarassed) "You know, some of his gaming friends...and the ex-girlfriend..."
Me: "What!? They just broke up right? Do you really think that's a good idea?"
Dad: (getting defensive and trying to escape to the den) "That's what we said. He said they weren't really going to see eachother...Besides, he already paid for it"
Me: "Paid for it? What kind of camping trip do you have to pay for? And how is he not going to see the ex? She weighs 300 pounds."

This went back and forth for a little while and cycled through several levels of visible discomfort and evasiveness from the parents until they finally came out with it.

LJ was on a role-playing camping trip a la Dungeons & Dragons at a renaissance fairground in the western Massachusetts with about 70 other people who would be dressed in full costume and partaking in epic battle recreations with homemade weapons.

These are some honest-to-God Larpers

That's right. LJ emerged from the woods with this kid who definitely looked like he had spent some significant time under a mossy rock. When I asked what was wrong with his forehead (it was all red and broken out) he said his skin was reacting to being covered in greasepaint all weekend. Yikes.

Harrasaurus Rex?

While I don't know how I feel about the nickname, I'll definitely keep the nephew. Spunkiest little one year old I know....

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Have you been keeping up on your news?

Alright. I know it's been a while. Let's jump right in to some notable headlines:

Arkansas couple welcomes 17th child
Fri Aug 3, 10:56 AM ET

Michelle Duggar, left, is surrounded by her children and husband Jim Bob, top left, while she holds her newborn daughter, Jennifer Danielle, Thursday, Aug. 2, 2007 in Rogers, Ark. Jennifer Danielle was born at 10:01 a.m., weighed 8 lbs 8 oz, was 21 inches long, and is the 17th child born to Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar. (AP Photo/Beth Hall)

This is crazy. You may or may not be familiar with the Duggar family. I for one have been keeping track of their exploits since stumbling across the Discovery Channel special "14 Kids and One On The Way!". That was 3 kids ago. I think you have to be absolutely mental to be pregnant for 10.5 years (thanks Discovery Health fun facts). In the news article Michelle Duggar, the only member of the family whose name does not start with J, said that she was surprised that her labor only lasted about 30 minutes. Excuse me Michelle? You must be on some serious drugs to have deluded yourself into thinking that you still have any muscle retention left down there.

"Bid to break kazoo record fails"
Thu Aug 2, 11:53 PM ET

NEW YORK - Members of a 1980s funk and disco group hit a sour note in their attempt to break the world record for the largest kazoo ensemble, falling short of the some 2,600 impromptu musicians needed.

Speaking of ridiculous ways to spend your time. I for one have always been somewhat annoyed by people who pursue world records in the first place. Who cares if you were able to keep 10 plates spinning simultaneously for 24 hours while bouncing on pogo stick and singing James Taylor? Big Whoop. Your 38. Get a life. Why don't you try breaking your own world record for longest amount of time spent acting like an utter clown?

In that vein, I get a sick satisfaction when I read about people who fail miserably at breaking a record. These particular jokers tried to break the record for largest kazoo ensemble. These people put in some work to keep everything on the up and up for this miserably inadequate record attempt. They brought in Barbara Stewart, a professional kazooist (again, grow up and do something worthwhile) to instruct the crowd since all participants had to be deemed "'proficient' players, in accordance with Guinness World Records requirements."

Who comes up with these requirements? In my mind, it's a group of old British men sitting around in a smoky, wood paneled room arguing about important world issues like the circumference of hula hoops and whether the face on that piece of toast looks like the Virgin Mary or Marv Albert. Wait...those are the guys from Ripley's Believe It or Not...Don't even get me started on them.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

What's the recipe for a quintessential Maine weekend?

Gather 4 girls with a penchant for alcohol, shopping, and sunshine.

Combine with a VW convertible and drive to the Freeport outlets.

Mix in a stripey seaside lunch of seafood in the sunshine

Sprinkle in a lingerie wearing shit-zsu and some hot outfits

Order up a first-time-ever lobster dinner for your roommate from the Midwest

Shake until sauced

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Do you Manu?

Despite a Providence hangover of monstrous proportions, Jessie held me to my commitment of attending the Manu Chao concert at Avalon on Sunday. I am so glad went! It was amazing. Take a look at the crowd in this video. We got to see him in a venue about a 10th of the size and he was just as amazing if not better. They came on for 3 encores. AMAZING. Check him out if he moseys your way. I mean it.

How do you beat the heat?

Seriously...I'm looking for suggestions. I know there are only about .3 really hot days in the grand scheme of a year in New England but, right now, I'm considering selling my left arm for an air conditioner. I don't even like air conditioning. It gives me headaches ad makes my throat dry. Ok sorry. Too much information. My temporary solution is a large pitcher of frozen raspberry margaritas and mindless reality television. On to more fun things...

I finally returned to Providence this past weekend, got reacquainted with my old futon while a guest at Jeri Ann's and, crammed quite a bit of catching up (drinking) and nostalgia into a short weekend. Jeri Ann invited me down for a belated going away barbeque which was very sweet and really fun! I think the fact that I came away with only one picture from the whole weekend proves that it was jampacked...with drinking. The picture was of Jeri Ann's dog wearing his Hawaiian shirt. I'm not going to post it because I think the blog's been a little animal heavy lately. Nevertheless and long story short, I had a great weekend in the PVD even though some parts are a little fuzzy. As always, everyone's welcome to come visit in Boston!

If it wasn't so G-D hot, I'm sure I'd be funnier.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

What's the best thing you can do for your cat?

One of the first deliveries to our new apartment was Howard the cat. Howie is Jessie's cat who had been boarding with her parents while she lived with allergic roommates. Now that we're in an allergy-frre zone, it was time for Jessie to resume responsibility for him. Just for some background, Howard is a 13 year-old Himalayan fomerly belonging to Jessie's grandmother. Think Jinxy cat from Meet The Parents:

Anyway, it was soon determined that Howie was in need of a grooming. Obviously, cats like Howie require a higher level of maintenance than most. More hair leads to more mats. More mats lead to the "lion cut." With a little bit of nudging from me and a educated explanation from our new German friend at "No Bones About It," Jessie dropped of a normal looking, slightly bedraggled Himalayan and picked up one of the most uniquely entertaining characters I've ever been privelaged enough to know. Behold, the new and more aerodynamic, lion-cut Howard:

It's amazing. I know. Call me up and you can see him in person anytime.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Back With a Vengeance

Hello faithful friends.

I am finally relocated in lovely Brighton. Referred to by some as the "post college ghetto" or "the slums", our apartment is a cozy oasis in the midst of sweatpant clad 20-somethings and clattering T trains. My two roommates and I have put a great deal of effort into creating more than just a temporary dwelling. The result is a mature yet comfortable tribute to being a few years out of college and making the most of the resources at our disposal. Four days after our move-in and we're already throwing our first dinner party. Amanda came over for a delicious dinner facilitated by Trader Joe's groceries, my cooking, and Jessie's ambiance-creation abilities.

Look how mature and entertaining my friends are.

The move-in experience was one of the most ridiculous and frustrating experiences of my life. Most of you have already heard the details so I won't go into it here. Long story short, we dealt with a 21 year old stoner to rent our apartment, he completely screwed up the whole process, and I almost had to put all of my belongings in storage when the lease wasn't delivered and the landlord almost denied me access to the apatment. Bahhh. Thank goodness International Jessie showed up on move-in day to help us navigate the troubled waters.

So there will be many more fun stories to come from my roommates and I. Thanks to my trusty new internet connection, I'll once more be able to keep you all updated on things you didn't really care about in the first place.

Here we are after dragging ourselves out for Jeb's birthday on day one of the move. We're troopers.


Thursday, May 17, 2007

I'm not quite dead...

So I have been a terrible blogger lately and I apologize. I'm not quite sure who I'm apologizing to since everyone has most likely, lost interest in my blog. The robo-falcons really didn't go over well. Not that I'm into excuses but commuting to Boston has really cut down on my free time. Just to show that I have been missing my cyber-rants, I'm posting the following list of topics that I emailed myself from work as a reminder to blog about them. Feel free to discuss:

*Cute little fingerprinting man in the basement vault of a 101yr old building
*Elevator boyfriend/longboard boy
*Wine Night
*iPods and commuting
*Killers pictures
*Greg the real estate broker

I swear that I've had some worthwhile experiences of late so hopefully I'll get some time to share them this weekend if the packing stays on schedule. Moving day is June 1st!!

Saturday, April 21, 2007


"Robofalcons" to take on UK city's pesky pigeons
Fri Apr 20, 9:14 AM ET

LONDON (Reuters) - A flock of robotic falcons has been dispatched to tackle an influx of obese pigeons who are increasing in number and size thanks to an unnatural diet of fastfood.

The mechanical birds -- called 'Robops' -- have been placed on rooftop locations around the British city of Liverpool, and will flap their wings and squawk loudly to scare the problem pigeons away. The initiative was launched to deal with the birds who are now considered a nuisance in the city, flying at people and leaving droppings everywhere, Liverpool council said.

The pigeon problem has been exacerbated by residents in the city feeding the birds -- whose natural diet is seeds and insects -- with take-away leftovers. "We need to get the message across that anyone who feeds the birds intentionally, or occasionally with leftovers such as sausage rolls or burgers, is responsible for our streets being so crowded with these birds," Berni Turner, Liverpool city council's executive member for the environment said.

The falcons, created by a Scottish company, resemble a Peregrine Falcon - which is a natural predator of pigeons.

As a result of the scaring techniques and people not feeding the birds, it is hoped that the pigeon population will move out of the city center and into Liverpool's parks and green spaces.

The Council's Environmental Health manager Andy Hull said that the scheme was an attempt to improve the health of the pigeons, as their current diet is unhealthy and dangerous.

However, experts have condemned the scheme, saying that the council needs to tackle the source of the problem, rather than the symptoms. Emma Haskell, Director of PiCAS UK, the leading independent advisory body on the issue of bird control in Britain said her organization had done studies with mechanical deterrents and had found them to be completely ineffective.
"We believe that this is a complete waste of time...and a waste of money," she said. "Pigeons are a highly intelligent bird and they soon realize that these mechanical things are not a threat."

Liverpool has been named European Capital of Culture in 2008, but the city council currently uses the equivalent of 88 man-hours a day cleaning droppings from streets and buildings, at a cost of 160,000 a year.

"The robotic hawks are almost laughable as a method of control and the cost associated with buying and installing the product... simply cannot be justified," PiCAS said.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Can you say Commuter?

So I have survived week one of the new job. It was completely crazy but I have realized that the blog will live on if I can only devise a discreet way of taking pictures of all the crazy people I see everyday on my way to work. Commuters are a strange group of people. Unfortunately, I now have to count myself as one of their number. However, I'm new enough to the group to still be able to recognize some of the subtle signs of insanity exhibited by the people sitting next to me on the T or standing next to me on the elevator. Once I get my secret spy kit together I can take pictures of these midly nutzo citizens without pushing them over the edge. Until then, you'll just have to make do with written accounts:

Elevator Crazy of the Week: Today I peeled myself away from my desk so I could run downstairs and deposit a check at the bank conveniently located in my building's lobby. As I got into the elevator to head back up, a woman stepped into the elevator with me. I was standing back and to the right from her thinking how unflattering her trenchcoat was when I realized that she was pregnant. Before you berate me for being a jerk, the reason that I couldn't tell if she was pregnant was because she was literally standing 2 inches away from the buttons on the elevator facing the corner. It was only when she started maniacally fidgeting with her headband while looking at her reflection in the wall around the elevator buttons that I discovered she was in the family way. Good luck kid.

MBTA Crazy of the Week: This week's undecover crazy of the week goes to the woman I saw on the Orange Line between Weellington Station and State Street. To the average blind commuter this woman does not stand out. She was middle aged, mousy hair, reading a newspaper and clutching a canvas bag. It was the canvas bag that sparked my interest. It was a washed out, off white color with a large logo reading "The Leaf & Acorn Club for Charming Tails Collectors." Now, I had no idea what Charming Tails were until I raced home and googled it.

Wait for it...

It's worth it....


OK. Charming Tails are collectible resin figurines of playful mice in various delightful scenarios. This woman is ready to crack I swear it.

This piece is entitled "Party til the Cows Come Home"

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Can you believe he threw me a party!?

Yup, you read that correctly. Bossman suprised me with a gong away party on my last day. It was totally unexpected but it was so nice to get all of my coworkers together in one spot and get in our last goodbyes. I was really touched that everyone took time out of their busy schedules to give me a little send off. Things got a little crazy towards the end but thankfully someone had a camera to document all of it...

I'm really going to miss all those guys.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Feeling Feisty?

Some days you just feel like prancing around and running through fields in the sunshine. Today is one of those days. Since I don't have a meadow at my disposal and it's not really that sunny, I'll have to express my emotions through music videos. Here's an old one and a new one from Feist. Enjoy.



Thursday, April 12, 2007

Does anyone else feel like it's Christmas Eve?

I do!

Tomorrow's the last day with Bossman! Don't worry, I've got a couple of last minute inquiries from him that will make interesting reading. I'll save that for tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

What do you get...

...when you mix 2 born and bred New Englanders, 3 Southern belles, 1 Bulgarian waiter, and Boston together on a Friday night? A whole lot of nonsense and a Lobster covered in marinara sauce.

Jeri Ann finally got to prove that she did indeed have friends before she moved here when Naomi and Christy came to visit this past weekend. Jessie and I met them for a lovely little dinner in the North End at Saraceno. Upon arriving, the small Italian man acting as host immediately shuffled us back outside and up a very narrow staircase. Jessie and I thought we were being taken to go sleep with the fishes but in fact it was just the way to get to the upstairs dining room. How quaint.

Upstairs we met the girls, traded some "y'alls" around and dined on calamari, tomato and mozzarella, mussels, pasta, and the aforementioned lobster. Jessie and I wasted no time in diving in and eeking every last piece of meat from the sauced crustacean. Needless to say, the red sauce and my 3 vodka tonics made it a little messy.

All of these epicurean delights were administered to us by "Steve" our Bulgarian waiter. Over the course of the night Naomi had charmed him to the point where he brought us a round of free drinks and sat down with us to tell us all about his life as a student at Northeastern.

After closing down the restaurant and getting Steve's reccomendation on where to go out that night, we headed back to the Park Plaza (where my very chic Southern friends were staying) and had a drink at Whiskey Park. We took the requisite group photos, laughed at the couple making out behind us, dodged a couple of business consultants who "just wanted to chat" and called it a night. Lots of fun had by all.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Why am I so psyched for Monday?

Because this is the day it begins...the last week with Bossman that is. I wish I could say that it's a little bittersweet. It's not. I wish I could say that I'll miss working for Bossman. I won't. I wish I could say that I hadn't intercepted an email that he wrote to a friend saying that I "wasn't exactly an ideal hire." I did.

Petty grievances aside, I've found myself mulling over two questions in my head as the beginning of the end begins.

1) What will the last conversation be like? Personally, I wouldn't be surprised if I don't even see him on Friday. That would be kind of his style. How awkward is it going to be to just walk out of the house and leave my keys and batphone behind? Actually, I can't leave my key on the desk since I'll have to lock up upon leaving. I guess I'll have to drop it in the mail slot. With my luck, the key will bounce off of the marble floor and underneath the antique mirror/bench/umbrella stand thing in the entryway. Upon arriving home and not being able to find the key, Bossman will call me asking where the key is and that will be totally awkward since it's my last day and he didn't even talk to me. Maybe I'm over thinking it.

I have been fantasizing about this whole final exit sequence where I say goodbye to Bossman with the perfect cutting remark that encompasses all of my frustrations and highlights all of his deficiencies as a manager/human being followed by me storming out of the haunted mansion, never to be seen again. However, he probably wouldn't get it and I don't really have the budget for the fabulous outfit a scene like that deserves. I'd rather spend the money on post-emancipation cocktails.

2) The second thing on my mind is obviously: "To sabotage or not to sabotage?" I'm leaning towards not since having to run his own life is going to be disastrous enough for Bossman. I think the furthest I'll go is bringing all of his favorite shirts to the dry cleaner on my last day and wait to see how long it takes for him to pick them up. I could log out of all the preset accounts that I've set up and let him figure it out on his own except for the fact that he's shameless enough to call me every time he runs into a snag...not that I plan on answering....

Friday, April 6, 2007

Did you know they could do this?

The amount of stupid nonsense that people will do with their pets never ceases to amaze me. I thought the cat show I went to was bad but competitive bunny jumping? This takes organized pet activities to a whole other level. In honor of the upcoming holiday, enjoy...

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Who's my favorite new Christian?

A couple of weeks ago another member of the clan was introduced to Jesus. We're big on tradition in my family so my Mom spent a week ironing the family Christening gown for wee little Harrison (he's the 3rd generation to wear it). Typically, his head was too big for the bonnet but I still think he carried off the outfit.

Some of the highlights and fun facts included:
* The ceremony was performed by Reverend Hughes who married my parents and baptized LJ and I.
*We got both my father and my heathen uncle and cousin to the church on time.
*While making the church announcements, Reverend Hughes commented that despite setting the time limit for the Easter Service at 1 hour, he couldn't control all the "hot air for Christ" that comes out around the holidays.

*Harrison was continuously reaching for his dad's PBR bottle at the after party. I told you, the kid's a rockstar.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007


Keith Richards: 'I Snorted My Father'
Apr 3, 3:14 PM (ET)

LONDON (AP) - Keith Richards has acknowledged consuming a raft of illegal substances in his time, but this may top them all.
In comments published Tuesday, the 63-year-old Rolling Stones guitarist said he had snorted his father's ashes mixed with cocaine.
"The strangest thing I've tried to snort? My father. I snorted my father," Richards was quoted as saying by British music magazine NME.
"He was cremated and I couldn't resist grinding him up with a little bit of blow. My dad wouldn't have cared," he said. "... It went down pretty well, and I'm still alive."

Richards' father, Bert, died in 2002, at 84.
Richards, one of rock's legendary wild men, told the magazine that his survival was the result of luck, and advised young musicians against trying to emulate him.
"I did it because that was the way I did it. Now people think it's a way of life," he was quoted as saying.
"I've no pretensions about immortality," he added. "I'm the same as everyone ... just kind of lucky.
"I was No. 1 on the 'who's likely to die' list for 10 years. I mean, I was really disappointed when I fell off the list," Richards said.

Do you know your Commandments?

I know I stole this from Alex but I think these are some tenets for everyone to live by. Pause Dolly and give it a whirl.

Sunday, April 1, 2007

What's Monday's BIG news?


That's the news. This morning, after going over the usual to-do list of errands I have to run and things I have to fix, I gave Bossman my two weeks notice. That's right kids, I've taken a new job and I'm making the transition to Boston.

There isn't a whole lot more to say really. The conversation itself was extremely anticlimactic. Not that I expected tears or counter-offers, but he didn't really say anything. I laid it out very succinctly that I had made the decision to relocate to Boston and had taken another position. Maybe he's freaking out internally and I'm sure that he's going to send me an email later asking me to write up the new craigslist ad to find my replacement, but, it seems like the saga of Bossman is coming to a quiet close.

So instead of filling my blog with pictures of sushi girls and ceramic dogs, I'll have to supply you with crazy stories of commuters and the transformation from small town assistant to big city professional that I'll soon be making. I've taken a job working with a team of financial advisers on State Street. It should be a trip! Wish me luck!

Monday, March 26, 2007

How Does one file their taxes when working for Bossman? Pt. 3

No, I still do not have my 1099. Over the past several days, the situation has deteriorated to the point where I don't even see him anymore and we only communicate about my 1099 via email and, in reality, he doesn't really participate. He just sends me forwards from his accountant. To top it all off, I feel like we're back to square one since this morning he basically asked me to fill it out for myself(again). Is it time to give my notice yet?

If you're really bored and have some time to waste, feel free to peruse the email chain.

Sun Mar 11 15:56:13 2007
1099 Form

Hi Bossman,

I just did a search on google for a 1099 form. I believe this is the form I need:

However, there are a couple of different 1099 forms and, not being an accountant, I'm not really qualified to accurately determine which form you need to give me and which on you should be filing with the IRS. Can I speak to your accountant directly on Monday? I'd like to take care of this as soon as possible.

Your Faithful Assistant

Wed, 14 Mar 2007 16:47:10
Fwd: FW: Household employee issues

Bossman, below is a link to a website that discusses various issues related to Household employees. You should look through this. I have also attached instructions for form SS-4 and the form. I believe you can call or go on line and complete the form (it is probably easier to call)

I will send you the form 1099 and 1096 to complete


Your Accountant
Very Big and Important office
Numbertown, USA 12345

NOTE: This was a forward from Bossman that I received without any explanation or salutation

Thu Mar 15 11:16:33 2007
RE: Fwd: FW: Household employee issues

Hi Bossman,

So I assume this means you're on top of everything? I'd like to have my 1099 by Friday, the 23rd at the very latest.


Wed Mar 21 17:02:41 2007
Fwd: RE: FW: Household employee issues

Bossman, sorry, I forgot to get these out to you--I am having my assistant send them out today. Thanks for reminding me.

Your Accountant
Very Big and Important office
Numbertown, USA 12345

Mon Mar 26 10:41:59 2007
1099: URGENT

Hi Bossman,

The 1099 forms arrived over the weekend from your accountant. I'd appreciate it if you can get them filled out ASAP.


Mon Mar 26 10:48:29 2007
Re: 1099: URGENT

Why don't you look over them and write down any information that I might need.

Your start date, SSN, detailed payment history etc.


Friday, March 23, 2007

"Can you run to the mall for me?"

Bossman: "My mom is moving away and I'd like to get her a piece of Lladro as a going away gift. Can you go to Ross-Simons and find pieces that are travel or moving related, send me pictures via the phone, and I'll pick one?"

Faithful Assistant: "Sure. When do you need it by?"
BM: "Before 2pm."

Now, it's not such an odd request for me to go out and pick up a gift for him. However, I always get nervous when he puts such specific guidelines on what he wants. It has to be Lladro, it has to be from Ross-Simons, and it has to be related to his mother moving away. Yikes. I'm somewhat familiar with Lladro's overly emotional, pastel, high-gloss porcelain figurines. They are usually tall slender mothers in long dresses cradling babies or puppies. It's not exactly my taste. Also, any depiction of motherhood from them usually involves infants. Mothers aren't likely to move away from infants, thus making "relocation" a somewhat unexplored theme in Lladro ceramics.

Obstacle #2 was that my car is in the shop. I know. AGAIN. Although they promised I would have it by early afternoon, I knew I wasn't going to get it by 1pm. The scramble began for me to again impose my carless-yet-errand-laden self on one of my generous friends. Liz answered the call, picked me up, and we headed to benevolent Providence Place Mall on what I promised would be a "short trip."

After finding the only two figurines that could be remotely related to any sort of travel, I snapped the pictures (see Fig 1 & 2), and sent them to Bossman. I followed up with a phone call two minutes later:

FA: "Hi Bossman, I just sent you two pictures. Have you gotten them yet?"
BM: "No."
FA: "Ok. Well did you want me to buy the piece or are you going to come pick it up yourself?"
BM: "Um...I'm not sure. Let me call you back in a little bit."
FA: "Ok. well it's just that I don't have a car so I'm at the mall with my friend and I can't stay here that long. Can you call me back in two minutes?"
BM: "Oh. Ok."
FA: "So you're going to call me back?"
BM: "Yeah."

Long story short, he called me back and said that he was just going to come to the mall himself so I didn't have to stick around if I didn't want to. Apparently he doubts my ability to interpret the meaning of Lladro.

Fig 1: This is a puppy (somewhat similar to Bossman's dog) riding a paper airplane on top of a stylized gust of wind.

Fig 2: This is a bird gliding South (get it? get it?) on yet another, stylized gust of wind

Thursday, March 22, 2007

How clever was I on St. Patrick's Day?

I was so clever that I had the forethought to steal a pun from the internet and put it onto tshirts with Jessie before heading out for National Drinking Day. Let's have a little visual recap f the day shall we?

I felt like the typical Boston girl in my matching gear but at least our shirts got some laughs.

What also got some laughs was when Jessie and I began to take a picture and she broke away to yell at Matt who was minding his own business reading a shoe catalog in the dark.

"Let's take a picture! No! Not you...MATT."

I swear that this pose was completely spontaneous...sometimes magic just happens.

Here's the BryGuy, Jessie, and Jeb. She's obviously still a little angry about the Matt thing.

Andrew decided that he needed a mohawk to celebrate the day. It's hard to see but it's there. Trust me.

And what's a night out on the town without a classic fall from Messy Jessie? This was one for the record books though. What happens when you mix slushy conditions, cowboy boots, a natural sense of grace and balance, and a day's worth of drinking?

Answer: You get Jessie doing her flipped over turtle impression on Cambridge Street. She had strangers offering to help her up because her 3 friends were too busy laughing and taking pictures of her to pick her up. Sorry Jessie.

Friday, March 16, 2007

How does one file their taxes when working for Bossman? Pt. 2

After receiving a forwarded message from Bossman's accountant via Bossman, I was concerned that he was trying to pass on the responsibility of the aforementioned 1099 form to me. The email showed that Bossman had in fact discussed the situation with an accountant and contained links to info on filling out the 1099 as well as another form to apply for an employer identification number. In a passive aggressive, defensive manuever, I replied to said email saying "So I assume this means you're taking care of getting the form? Thanks so much for being on top of it. I'd like to have the form by March 23rd at the latest."

That was Wednesday. Today being Friday and still having gotten no response, I decided to revisit the issue while he smacked away on his morning pear.

FA: "What's the latest on my 1099 form?"
BM: "The accountant is sending me the form I have to fill out. I guess I also need need to apply for an Employer Identification Number."
FA: "Ok. So you're on top of it?"
BM: "Well, if you could look at that email and tell me what I have to do for that, it would really help me out."
FA: (holding my ground) " I took a quick look and all you have to do is fill out the form and send it in."
BM: "I have to mail it in? I thought I could do it over the phone."

Let's take a brief time-out to analyze the subtle nuances of that last statement. Saying that he thought he could do it over the phone proves that he did indeed read the email and the attachments. Therefore, I would hazard to guess that he read the email, decided he didn't really feel like doing it, and forwarded it to me. Was he trying to play dumb so that I would take a closer look at the form, fill it out for him, and call in the info? It's highly likely. Time in.

FA:(reopening the email) "Oh you're right. You can do it over the phone. I think the easiest thing to do is print out the form, fill it in, then call in the information."

Awkward silence as Bossman waits for me to add, "...or I could just do it for you..." which I don't.

BM: (pretending that this is the moment when he has to run out the door) "Ok. Well I have to run but I'll look into it."
FA: (highly skeptical and thinking about the email I will write later to follow up) "Sounds good. Have a good day."

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

How does one file their taxes when working for Bossman?

Good question.

It was initially agreed upon that I would be paid as an independent contractor and therefore receive a 1099 form, not the traditional W-2. Although it's pretty much illegal since I'm a permanent employee and he just wants to avoid paying payroll taxes, I went ahead with the plan since I was really excited about the job when I first started. I think we all know by now that my sentiments have since changed...

This past Sunday, I went home with my file-a-fax full of receipts and bills I had saved over the course of my employ as an independent contractor, ready to write off business expenses to my heart's content. However, a small snag was reached when diligent TurboTax asked me to enter the information from box 3b of my 1099. Box 3b? I suddenly realized that I couldn't fulfill the request since I didn't have a 1099 form from my employer (Bossman) and therefore had no idea what would be in box 3b.

Keeping my cool, I dial up Bossman. The conversation (somewhat abbreviated) went as follows:

Faithful Assistant: "Hi Bossman, I'm sitting here trying to do my taxes and realized that I haven't received a 1099 form from you yet. Do you know when I should be expecting it?"
Bossman: (somewhat dreamily) "Um....No. I don't have any idea."

Awkward silence...

FA: "Oh. Ok. Umm..."
BM: "Well what goes into that?"
FA: (trying to hide frustration) "Well, you or your accountant are supposed to fill out a 1099 form and submit it to me and the IRS so I can report my earnings and file my taxes."
BM: "Oh."
FA: "Should I talk to your accountant about it?"
BM: "Well, why don't you just figure out the steps that go into it and we'll go from there?"
FA: "Ok. I guess I can do that but I'd really need to speak to an accountant to make sure it's all correct."
BM: "Well...if you can figure out what needs to go into that then we can work it out."
FA: (getting audibly more frustrated) "Alright. I do need to get this taken care of really soon since the deadline is coming up. Do you have an accountant that handles your taxes?"
BM: (Still dreamy, I now think he's watching tv while talking to me) "There is an accountant but I don't think he'd handle this kind of thing..."

Awkward silence #2...

FA: "Um. You also have to file a 1099 as a part of your taxes. Your accountant should know about this if he's filing for you."
BM: "(audibly reaching his limit for how long he feels like talking to me) Ok. If you can just look into what information you need, you and I can go from there on Monday."
FA: (awash in defeat) "Sounds good. I'll see you Monday."

endnote: He told me to take the day off on Monday.

Monday, March 5, 2007

What happens when you leave Aunt Kate alone with the baby?

He ends up looking like he just rolled out of a frat party. Good thing Harrison's middle name is Bender. The kid's already a champ in the rocking out department. Oooo and ahhh as much as you'd like.

And don't worry...I haven't gone all soft yet. It's Aunt Kate. Not Auntie Katie. Aunt Kate. Either he gets it straight or there will be no presents.