Sunday, March 28, 2010

Do The Robot

Last week, I was super excited when the ticket window at AMC handed me a voucher for a free ticket. Using my moviewatcher card, I had somehow earned or randomly been chosen for this wonderful gift. Of course, I couldn't use it on the movie I was seeing that day. And it expires in a month. And I can't use it on any "special engagements". When I inquired what constituted a "special engagement," I was informed that it was any movie on their electronic train-schedule-esque board with an asterisk. Oook, How do I know which movies have asterisks when I'm sitting at home trying to pick a movie with my husband? So I ask someone else, who tells me a "special engagement" is any movie that's been out for less than 2 weeks. Oh joy.

Since I got two different responses, I decided to call on the evening in which my husband and I wished to see a movie. It has been a very long time since J and I saw a movie together. Perhaps it's the work-week business and the high weekend prices. Ok, just scratch that and make it a definitely. Unsure if the movie we want to see (The Bounty Hunter, for those of you interested) is still considered a special engagement, I decided it would be simplest to just call and ask.

Apparently calling and asking is a thing of the past. When I tried to find a phone number for our local AMC, all I could find was the corporate number. Finally, I called ,assuming I could somehow get to a live person on such a hectic movie night as a Saturday.

So at this point, for those of you keeping track, it's AMC 2, Me 0 in the point scale. I was wrong again. I get a recording. Here's how our conversation went, me and the crazed AMC Robot.

AMC Robot: Would you like to hear the movie times for AMC Tallahassee Mall?
ME: No.
AR: Would you like to hear what movies are currently playing?
AR: I'm sorry, I couldn't understand that. Would you like to [at this point she lists four different options, none of which are live person]
AR: I'm sorry I didn't understand that. Would you like to purchase tickets for a movie?
Me: Yes.
AR: What movie? Say the movie name.
Me: The Bounty Hunter.
AR: I'm sorry, I didn't understand that. Please try again.
ME: THE BOUNTY HUNTER [all caps indicates me yelling here]
AR: I'm sorry, I didn't understand that. Please try again.
Me: The Bou-nty Hun-ter (annunciating like a robot)
AR: What time would you like? There is a 7, 7:45, 9:45 and 10:30. Say your movie time.
Me: 9:45.
AR: I'm sorry I didn't understand that. Please try again.
Me: Ni-Ne Fo-rty Fi-ve (again with the robot talk)
AR: You've selected the 9:45. Is that correct?
Me: Yes.
AR: How many tickets would you like?
Me: Two.
AR: I'm sorry, I didn't understand that. Please try again.
AR: Ok, let's make sure I've got this right. You want two tickets for the 9:45 showing of The Bounty Hunter. Is that right?
AR: You're total is-
AR: I'm sorry, I didn't understand that. Please try again.
ME: Are you f-ing kidding me?!
AR: I'm sorry, I didn't understand that. Please try again.

At this point, I hit the zero button. She then told me the number for the AMC in the Tallahassee mall. I didn't have a pen or paper. I then spent 45 seconds yelling REPEAT! before hitting the zero again. Then she offered to transfer me.

When I finally got to a live person, I learned that the movie had only been out for a week and I couldn't use my free ticket. We didn't go.

AMC 3, Me 0

Lesson learned: Talk like a robot, and you'll spend less time yelling at one.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

C VS The Furniture- C is the Winner!

I battled the furniture...and I won.

We have limited space and limited means to organize that space and make it as wonderful as possible. I wrote earlier about my endeavor to re-arrange the furniture in our house in order to improve it for both us and our guests. And I succeeded! The chair is in the bedroom, and though I've only sat in it once, I'm enjoying the way the room looks much more now. The space is also more functional, which is a nice bonus.

On a plus side of our friends and guests, we now have a love seat! That means no more wooden dining room chairs in the living room while we're hanging out. We now have a couch, a chair, and a love seat. It's amazing- we could actually have both sets of our parents over and everyone could be comfortable! It's the little things that make life better. I promise pictures are coming soon, but I'm a bit of a photo failure right now and haven't uploaded photos in nag me. And eventually I'll post them.

I battled Spanish- and I lost. Sad day. After taking two years in high school, I thought I could take the CLEP test, get the credits I needed, and graduate this semester. Sadly, I had more confidence in myself than I deserved. I took a placement test as practice today, and only tested out of one level. I needed to test out of three levels. On the bright side, I didn't waste $87 for the CLEP test and I am saving approximately $600 on course fees, but I'm kicking myself for not doing this last semester. I know I have a list of good reasons-- a full course load, wedding planning, working quite a bit, and ultimately no free time to study Spanish-- yet I still regret it. Now, I will graduate one to two semesters late. Although this is a major bummer, I realize that my plan and God's plan may not be the same. In the end, I will be where I'm supposed to be. All I can do is accept that and try and make the best of it. However, if anyone looks like me and knows Spanish fluently.... Just kidding. Maybe. Unless you really want to, and feel the system is flawed....

Re-arranging the furniture was a very nice distraction from the emotional flip-flop I've been in recently. I'm very thankful for my amazing husband and wonderful friends in Tallahassee, but I've really been missing my out-of-town friends. It seems the older we get, the farther we move away, and often to more remote places with sketchy internet. The friendships remain strong, sometimes even growing over the distance, yet I still miss being able to sit down and drink coffee with them and just catch up. I was able to do that in town with a friend yesterday, and it made me realize how much I miss having all my friends nearby. So to those of you (and you know who you are!), just know that I'm thinking about you and missing you.

To end on a happy note, Febreeze and Swiffer joined forces, and my floors smell amazing. Not quite amazing enough to have me camp out on them, but pretty darn close.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Post Wedding Thoughts on the Post Wedding Blues

The Post-Wedding Blues- sadness that your wedding is over, you miss planning, all the attention, blah blah blah.

Did I feel the post-wedding blues? Not immediately. Planning my wedding was not what I thought it would be. Before he dropped down to one knee on that cruise ship balcony (sounds romantic right? Now add a Bruce Lee shirt and my pre-cruise proposal nightmare that he proposed on said balcony and in my immense excitement I knocked the ring out of his hand into the blue abyss, never to be seen again except by those creepy fish in the deepest darkest parts of the ocean.), I thought wedding planning would be a blast. I love organizing events, so wedding planning should be right up my alley. I'm a bargain shopper, working on a small budget is not a problem. But where I pictured bridal magazines on the Starbucks table between myself and my closest girlfriends went up in a poof shortly after we returned from the cruise.

First the stress of setting the date. With family in five states, three friends in other countries and the military to work around, that was not so easy. Once accomplished, I realized that idyllic image of bridal magazines and closest girlfriends would be a lot harder with one of those girls in Eygpy, another in Canada, another in Texas, and the fact that bridal magazines cost the same amount as a trade paperback book (I'm a bookseller, I know these things). Being the budget conscious shopper I am, I couldn't bear to buy more than two. Luckily for me, my Canada-girlfriend Katya's dad somehow ended up with a free subscription to Modern Bride, which she so kindly forwarded to me.

Despite the distance, my girlfriends really pulled through. Looking through dresses online via phone and facebook messages was loads of fun. And my local friends went wedding dress shopping with me, which was also loads of fun. Even if we were on completely opposite time zone schedules, they were the best bridesmaids a girl could ask for--all 6 of them. (Oh yes, that's right-- our 50-guest wedding had a 17 person bridal party including bridesmaids, groomsmen, flower girls, ring bearer, bride and groom. That's how we roll. Our friends rock.)

Despite amazing friends, wedding planning kind of sucked. I'm all for negotiating and working out a deal-- wedding vendors aren't. Especially not in this economy. One photographer even called me names and said my wedding would be ruined because we didn't choose him-- keep in mind he responded to an ad I posted that stated what we could pay. He was probably the rudest person I have ever dealt with. I had to threaten to file for harassment to put an end to his obnoxious e-mails. Thankfully, a friend from class recommended her roommate, who was starting a photography business. We looked at their photos, and they were amazing. We truly lucked out-- we had the most amazing wedding photographers, and they were willing to work with us on every single detail.

The wedding ended up going well-- completely thanks to those amazing friends mentioned earlier. And it was such fun to see all the pictures taken, both my friends and by our superstar photographers. But even a month after the wedding, I did not have the post wedding blues. Then it hit me: my wedding was over. This special day I'd been dreaming about my whole life was over. So this is what people were talking about. It was sad. What do we dream about now? As renters not planning to buy for another 3 years, it's hard to dream of owning a house when it's still three years away. Babies are the same thing. So for the next three years it's just kind of what?

So basically I learned that the post-wedding blues aren't all blah blah blah. It is sad. But on the other still end up married. To someone you love (hopefully). And you probably chose it. So I had a short little burst of the pos-wedding blues, but really-- the trade off is pretty great.

And maybe in ten years we'll renew our Hawaii. :)

Welcome and Design Conundrum

I couldn't decide on any one thing to write about, so Paw Prints in the Sink will be a compilation of just about anything and everything. You can expect book reviews, poetry, random thoughts, great recipes, adventures in married life, decorating dilemmas, dog-family stories and probably loads more. So to get us started....Decorating!

I'm not sure if it's married life or just being sick of school, but interior decorating has regained a priority in my life. This goes hand in hand with my OCD organized personality. I'm using Spring Cleaning, reorganizing and redecorating our house as a treat when I finish my papers and take the CLEP for Spanish (which I'm praying will give me all the credits I need so I can graduate this semester!). I know, cleaning as a reward means I'm pretty weird. But since we upgraded our old tiny TV to a nice flat screen, we've (or rather, I have) been doing a lot of re-arranging with furniture. Our new TV didn't fit in our old TV stand, so we moved a table from another room. But there's about an inch on either side of the table that the TV hangs over. The simplest answer to this conundrum is get a bigger table, right? Except I'm trying to spend little to nothing on this little project of mine. I want to work with what I have. Which means I can sand and refinish furniture, but I'm trying not to buy too much. Oddly enough, I'm going to Quincy on Friday to look at a love seat for $30.
What the heck- trying not to spend money, right? But we need more seating in the living room and $30 for a love seat sounds like a pretty awesome deal. Especially considering it's blue, so it matches our other living room furniture. This will allow me to move a chair into the bedroom. The chair-in-the-bedroom thing actually started the search that led me to finding the couch. The said putting a chair in the bedroom would make it more cozy, and could make it seem more luxurious without spending a lot. Presumably you're supposed to already have this magical chair, but since we're low on seating, I'm having to replace the chair.
Of course, I was neither satisfied nor dissatisfied with our bedroom until I read that article. Now I look at our room a whole new way. What message does our design send? Right now it's still eclectic college furniture, different wood tones and random framed paintings. Our wedding prints aren't even up in frames yet, so it really just looks like a sophisticated version of collegiate furnishings. There's nothing wrong with that, but I'm over it. I've lived with it for almost four years, and I'm ready for my house, rental or not, to look like me. So stay tuned for adventures in re-arranging as well as before and after pics.