Monday, February 23, 2009

Does this mean I have to give back my five month coin?

So yesterday, in the North End, I broke down, went to Mike’s Pastry, where I bought a chocolate chip cannoli, a pear made out of marzipan, and three macaroons. Then, I INHALED them all when I got home.

An hour later, I freaked out and called my dad. I had fallen off the no-dessert wagon. I needed my DA (Desserts Anonymous) sponsor STAT. (My father hasn't eaten dessert in over a year.)

Today I got this email from him checking up on me after my sugar train wreck: Who was your yesterday enabler? Do you have a life line for today when you get the Dessert Tremins?

Clearly, I am descended from comedians.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Just Another Friday Night in Allston

Last night, I was awakened from my sleep just past 1:30 am by the sounds of sirens and breaking glass from the street. I couldn't figure out who in the world would continue breaking bottles while the police were there, but I chalked it up to drunkeness and tried to fall back to sleep.

However, the sudden sound of a pounding at my front door prompted me out of bed. Someone had run up the stairs and was pounding on all the doors. I grabbed my warm blanket, wrapped it around me and opened my door to find myself staring at the equally confused girl who lives across the hall. Just then, one of the upstairs neighbors came running down the stairs saying that the building next door was on fire.

The four buildings in my condominium are separate in name only. There is really only a thin layer of bricks between the buildings. (The units in the buildings are separated by walls made of horsehair plaster.) So despite the fact that the fire was in the building next door, there was a real fear that the fire could spread into our building. I threw on my sweats and my Ugg boots over my pajamas, grabbed my Land's End winter jacket and my purse, ran to the bathroom (which was filling with the smell of burning plastic) and left the building. My legs were shaking, but I felt calm. I never thought once about what I was going to save, other than myself, and staying warm.

When I got outside, I realized that what I mistook for someone breaking bottles was actually the windows of the top floor unit breaking from the heat of the fire. Glass littered the ground. There were three fire trucks outside the building, and a ladder stretched up to the roof. Firefighters were all over the block as well as EMTs and hoses ran down the block from hydrants in different directions.

Those of us standing around outside couldn't really figure out what was going on. The lights in the apartment were off, and you could see the flashlights of the men inside moving around. However, the lights in the units below were on, so you could tell the building still had power. We stood outside for nearly an hour as the Boston Fire Department did their thing. I went to talk to our property manager as he stood outside waiting for news from the fire chief and ended up getting sprayed a little bit when the water came out of the window. Eventually, we were given the all clear to go back inside. The fire had been contained in the one apartment.

The upside of this adventure was I got to talk to some of my neighbors who I usually just pass in the hallway or laundry room with a smile and a nod. One of the guys upstairs came outside with his dad's old camera and a stuffed rabbit, which he explained belonged to his girlfriend. (I told him it was good that he had his priorities in order, with a wink.) It will be interesting to see if things become a little less anonymous going forward.

When I got back inside, the adrenaline started to wear off, and I really started to shake. I made a pot of tea and called Sister K for a short, but calming, chat. I ended up putting on Possession, and I felt better just seeing some glimpses of London and the British Museum. (If you didn't that I was an Angophile before, gentle reader, I hope that this has removed all trace of doubt for you.) It took me ages to fall back to sleep, and I still ended up waking up at 7:30 am. As I write this, I can hear the people in the building next door going through their units. (They are being kind of loud actually.) I wonder if they got badly water damaged. I wonder how they are going to go about getting them fixed. I count my blessings that my home wasn't damaged and that no one was hurt.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Fall down, go boom!

I have a tendency to think of myself as a bit of a klutz. I walk into tables, I knock things over, I trip over things. Yesterday afternoon, however, I entered a whole new realm of klutziness.

I was carrying a load of laundry from my second floor apartment down the back staircase of my building to the basement when I slipped on one of the steps. First one leg went out from under me and then the other. I fell flat on my bottom and slid down two of the steps, slamming my back along the way. I was still holding the laundry basket. It was akin to a John Candy movie or perhaps a Three Stooges comedy. Unfortunately, I did not have a stunt double.

The first thought that crossed my mind was "Dear God, don't let me be paralyzed." When I felt the aching pain radiating out from under me, I was relieved. Trying to make as little noise as possible so not to attract my neighbors' attention (because once I established that I wasn't paralyzed, I didn't need to have my pride injured as as well as my bottom,) I got myself up and continued down the stairs to start the load of wash. I went back to my apartment, trying not to cry, and took three Motrin in the hopes of stopping the real pain that I knew was going to set in once the initial shock wore off.

Today is worse than yesterday. I am horribly sore, with bruises on my elbows from where I must hit them on the steps (holding the laundry basket) as well as on my back. It hurts to sit, it hurts to walk, and I can't really bend over at the waist. (Putting on shoes this morning was a challenge.) I came to work in the hopes that I could move around a bit and try not to get too stiff.

There is only one other time that I have been hurt like this. Senior year of college, I went skiing with some of my friends up in North Conway, NH. I hit a patch of ice, fell and rolled down the mountain. I haven't skied since. I have climbed up and down the stairs since falling so that is a good thing, but I might need to rethink how I carry my laundry downstairs. I have lived in my building for 9.5 years, and this is the first time I have fallen down the stairs. I guess that I have to count my blessings for that. I hope it is the last.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Looking Good & Feeling Good

I stopped eating desserts at the beginning of September and have managed to avoid them (with the exception of Christmas Day which was OUT OF CONTROL) since then. I have lost and kept off 15 pounds (at last check), and, more importantly, I feel SO MUCH BETTER. I had no idea how much sugar I was putting into my body. Good grief! Now when I have a coffee or iced tea with a real sugar or a glass of wine, I start to feel the sugar rush right away, and I notice a marked difference in my behavior. SPAZ! I don't like it nearly as much as I used to. Caffeine is good; sugar is decidedly not.

The other upside to the weight loss (besides feeling better) is being able to access a portion of my wardrobe that I haven't been able to wear in quite a while. Today, I was able to wear my kicking BR black flared skirt (much like the one Trinny is wearing here.) I haven't been able to wear this skirt and have it look nice in a couple of years. I wasn't sure that it was going to fit, but I tried it on on the off chance that it would,and it did. HOORAY!! And it looks kicking with my stretchy high heeled boots and teal long sleeve, cowl neck tee. Knowing that I look good in what I am wearing has a really positive effect on my overall disposition - I am much more upbeat today than the weather would normally have me be.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Truly Unfortunate Commute

I drove over the BU bridge at about 8:37 this morning behind a man on a bike. He was wearing jeans and a sweatshirt. The sweatshirt had ridden up, and the jeans had ridden down. I had a very interesting view the length of the bridge. And I didn't know what to do: I wasn't going to honk my horn at him and I couldn't yell out the window at him. So I just tried not to stare and laugh. It made me think of that old Denis Leary line, "PULL UP YOUR PANTS!"

He went on to Cambridgeport, and I went on to Mem Drive. I really hope that no one he works with was driving in behind him.


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