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~Friday, New Year's Day~



Image Courtesy: 123Greetings.com



Robert and I got up around 10:00 this morning, and the new year started off with an ornery coffee pot that worked my last nerve on the first day of the year. After an amount of futzing with it, the 10-cup amount of ingredients I put into the pot put out about 8 cups.

I made Swiss cheese omelets for us, with which we had some wheat toast and that hard-to-come-by coffee.



Robert was a dear and took a look at my garbage disposal that only hums when it's turned on, and has been that way for about a week. He found the reset button and pressed it, but that didn't make any difference. Next, he got the metal handle to a mop, and spun the blade around manually with it. That got it going, but with a horribly loud noise, which eventually yielded a steel fastener that was still in the disposal from one of the blades the broke off last week. Albeit in a degraded state, it now works at least.

Shortly after that, Robert headed back to Durham. Thanks for a wonderful New Year's Eve, my sweet.



I started getting my medical receipts together from last year in order to be able to fill out my Health Care Flexible Spending Account, from which I'll get back $750. With the receipts I had readily at hand (in the manila envelope I've been throwing them in all year), I had about $580 worth of reimbursable expenditures.

I then found the bill for a payment related to my knee surgery—which I had in December of 2008, but for which I had related expenditures through January of 2009—but I couldn't find the receipt for actually paying the bill. It was for a little over $450, so it will definitely complete this task for me as soon as I find the receipt for it. Worse case, I'll print a copy of my paid credit card statement on which I put the charge.



I (really) was going to run to the gym today thinking that it probably closed at 5:00, but when I called at 3:05 and asked, "What time are you closing today," the response I got was, "We closed five minutes ago." I took a nap instead. :-)

Prudie, of slate.com's Dear Prudence, ripped someone a new asshole again this week, which of course is not an unusual event. What was unusual, though, was the rhetorical device with which she did it—poetry!

Dear Prudie,

I am a 32-year-old single mother of a teenager, and I have been dating a great guy for the past year. He is my age and has no kids. Most of my relationships haven't lasted more than a few months.

This guy is perfect in many respects. He constantly tells me he loves me, gets along with my son, helps me around my house, plans his weekends to include me, and has introduced me to his family. The problem is that in the past year he has never bought me flowers.

I know it may seem petty, but it's something I think shows a woman that a man was thinking about her throughout the day and that he appreciates her. I have mentioned to him how much this bothers me, but it doesn't seem to change. Should I be concerned?

—Flowerless

Dear Flowerless,

Elizabeth Barrett Browning understood how you feel. In her exquisite "Sonnet 44," which begins, "Belovèd, thou hast brought me many flowers," the poet writes of how the blossoms from her lover have taken root in her own soul.

However, reviewing your situation, here is the first line of my sonnet to you: "Flowerless, thou art out of thy blooming mind." You were a teenage mother who has been alone nearly the entirety of your son's life. Now, you have someone who loves you, takes care of you and your son, and offers you the possibility of building a life together—and you're hectoring him because he doesn't conform to some horticultural cliché you've invested with disproportionate meaning.

My sonnet for you ends thusly: "Forget the flowers, lest ye be boyfriendless."

—Prudie

"...some horticultural cliché you've invested with disproportionate meaning..." You gotta love that.



I played online Scrabble through Facebook on and off today with Robert, and it was a fun game.

I opened the game by emptying my tray on the first word, and I earned just under a hundred points for it, which of course included the 50-point bonus for using all seven letters in one turn.

However, Robert came back throughout the game, and took his last turn with me 14 points ahead of him, but his going out caused me to have to subtract 15 points for my remaining letters—E (one point), V (four points), and Z (10 points)—for a dramatic win on his part! Fun stuff.



I got to Flex this evening at about 10 minutes until 11:00, and I left at 10 minutes until midnight. I paid $2.00 to get in, and had one drink for $3.50, which I nursed the entire hour. That, along with a $.50 tip on the drink, set me back $6.00 for the night. Cheap date, aren't I?

Aside: I usually tip $1 per drink, but there were new bartenders tonight, and I always make sure a bartender understands the direct correlation between the amount of my tip and the amount of bourbon in my drink. I start 'em off at 50% and then reward behavior I want to encourage as I see it materialize.

It was "Alternative Night," and billed as 120 Minutes of Music and 4 Hours of Video. I spent way too much time thinking about how that ad needed some punctuation in it to clarify its meaning, especially since videos were playing with the DJ's music. So did that mean that the whole shebang was going to be a total of four hours—with two hours of the four hours of video overlapping the DJ's music, or didn't the videos playing with the DJ's music count, and four hours of videos without the DJ would follow, making it a total of six hours for the whole shebang? I never did know. What I did know was that I wasn't going to be there long enough to find out.

As it usually is on First Friday Alternative Night, the place was teeming with straight people. As I've said many times now: Not that there's anything wrong with straight people. After all, they do produce a good number of the gay people in the worldmuch to a lot of their collective chagrin. I'm just saying...

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