Wednesday, August 27, 2003

Can't You See I'm Working?

I have been having a most bizarrely productive couple of days here at the office. And now I've run out of things to do... more or less. I mean, there are things I can do, aside from reading the latest issue of Elle and writing in my blog, but I have accomplished every one of the numerous tasks that have graced my to-do lists, and I even thought up a few other things that should have been done a month ago but which everyone forgot about. And the last task actually required physical labor, schlepping heavy boxes around and distributing flyers and calendars to the mailboxes in the very hot mailroom (complete with very hot mailroom clerk) of our district's Berkeley campus. Most tiring.

I thought of doing some shopping on Shattuck while I was there, as I usually do, peek into Shoe Pavilion and Ross and Stop the Clock... but unfortunately the cupboard has run bare again. This business of living within my budget is much harder than I expected it would be. I'm beginning to think that I should restructure somewhere. Like pay less into my credit-card debt, or something. Poverty suxx. Especially when it's not real poverty but only comparative poverty... I can't spend as much as I'm used to spending, and I'm all of a tizz over it.

I finished playing Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets for X-Box the other day... and was very disappointed. I usually don't finish video games because the final "boss" is usually so damned hard that I get all frustrated and give up. But in this game the final boss was easier to defeat than the bosses of the Spell Challenges, easier even than many of the puzzle-rooms, some of which were absolutely diabolical... hell, the Whomping Willow at the very beginning of the game took five times as long to defeat. In the PC version of the game, the entrance to the Chamber of Secrets is a long and incredibly complicated trip through the plumbing and sewers of Hogwarts Castle (and I haven't gotten past a scene that requires one to run from a rolling boulder while casting the Diffindo spell on the spiderwebs blocking the hallway and leaping over huge gaps in the floor), but in this one you fall right from the sink in Moaning Myrtle's bathroom into the grand corridor to the Chamber itself.

Then, having defeated the Basilisk, that's that. You can still wander around the game if you want, which is architecturally amazing and beautifully rendered... but there are all these locked doors that make you wonder why they're there, and I still haven't found the missing textbook that completes the Lost-and-Found minigame... not to mention having never found any use whatever for some of the equipment, namely the non-exploding luminous balloons and the stink pellets. There are a number of Wizard Cards that I haven't found yet, either. Plus the fact that I never won a single game of Quidditch, so poor are my joystick skills (no comments, please). I think I'm going to have to restart the game and see if I can't do a better job of it.

I can't quite believe I just wrote two paragraphs about a video game. But I was happy just to have uninterrupted access to it... we are finally devoid of children in our house (though my nephew, whose X-Box it is, will be returning this weekend from spending the week in Laughlin NV with his girlfriend's family, he's seventeen and remarkably quiet so he doesn't count). I'm just so thrilled to finally be free of little girls.

I didn't like little girls when I was little myself, and they haven't grown on me since then... I'm still fairly sure they harbor cooties. And then there's the giggling, that just drives me mad. Not to mention the slavish devotion to, and wildly infuriating imitation of, that Disney Channel archfiend Lizzie McGuire. We won't even get started on their individual habits, like Ariel's tendency to pretend she knows how to do things like fry bacon ("I like it black" she insists) or bake cakes (which she then expects you to eat, even though she put too much milk in the mix and then tried to even it out with extra oil and eggs), or Jessie's numerous glasses of crushed ice with long-handled spoons littered around the house.

So we're slowly recovering from the invasion. Grandmother has spent the last couple of days just staying in bed and resting, and soon we will be working on getting the house put back together... for though we no longer have Bratz dolls and carelessly discarded shoes blocking every thoroughfare, the general air of devastation that children tend to leave behind them must be slowly and methodically expunged... which is made more difficult by the fact that we've never really recovered from the painters last month, because of the child-mess. But I'm having people over at the end of next month, so I have a personal stake in getting the place put back in order and made comfortable again.

So anyway, having used up the time remaining to me for today, I can now fold up my petals and go home. Thank God! I'm sure you thank Him, too, as I will now stop babbling like an idiot and give you your ragazzo di giorno. I know, he's all dressed and everything, but I can't imagine anything sexier than a satin suit... and I can imagine him taking it off. So put on your Imagination Hat, and enjoy!


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