Wednesday, June 20, 2007


My alley is swarming with fire fighters. I think it's the building the PIRG is in? I walk by it every day, but I couldn't tell you now. I saw the firefighters walking around on the second floor. The building is narrow and non-descript, between the WSC on Dst, SE and the American Legion Hall.

Searchlights. Hose. No visible smoke. Lots of yelling. Men in the bottom halves of their suspended fire suits in their DCFD t-shirts all up in the tunnelled alley.

I am that kooky lady peering at these poor people through my blinds.

How on EARTH are people sleeping through this? How can you not watch?

I feel like I'm the only neighbor awake through the noise.

They see me peeking through the blinds and you can tell they wish I wouldn't.

So... internet. Got any answers?

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

It finally happened.

Every morning when I make my coffee, I make a mental note of the time when I turn off the coffee maker. I bought my coffee maker for $7.99 at Target in the "off to college" section.

7:55. 8:01. 8:13. 8:23.

It's an integral part of my morning routine. Flip on "Today Show". Rinse and repeat. Apply liberally. Make sure coffee maker is off. Slip on shoes. Lock door.

I guess you could say I have an irrational fear of leaving the coffee pot on.

Well, of leaving the coffee pot on, it shorting some wires, and me burning my apartment building down.

I've double checked. Triple checked. Stopped checking because I felt like I belonged on MTV True Life: I have OCD.

I have even turned RIGHT around when finally at the metro in the morning to go BACK to double check that it's off. I stopped short at calling my boyfriend and having him in all his non-electrician glory console me and say that I could leave the coffee pot on. Nothing would break or burn.

I don't really trust myself not to burn the house down. I can't keep plants alive and I forget to vacuum a lot.

I used to live on the top floor of a row house in Adams Morgan above some businesses. I would come home from Thanksgiving to find the front door wide open for days thanks to thoughtless travel agency workers. The wiring in our building was old, and alarms went off and they almost shut down our power. We had a wire gate that separated us from the rest of the boozy world where drunk frat boys would pass out on our front steps.

I used to fret about whether or not the apartment would still exist when I was away. I would always see the outside and breathe a half-sight of relief; the other half exhaled when I saw none of my stuff was moved.

It's hard to shake that when you live in a proper apartment building with locks and a landlady.

Today I had to make a stressful phone call in the morning. I was EXTRA glad to discover coffee in my cupboard when I had presumed I was out. I made coffee! I rinsed and repeated! I made the phone call! I watched the Today Show!

And I went to work.

AND came home and watched TV.

AND went to the gym.

AND THEN, only 20 minutes ago, discovered when I followed my nose to the vague smell of burnt chocolate, that the coffee pot was still on.

Moral of the story: if you leave the coffee pot on, planets do not combust, God does not kill a kitten, and my house doesn't burn down.

Don't you think for a MINUTE that I'm going to press my luck twice in this department, thankyouverymuch.

It is currently unplugged.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Breaking the habit

Breaking the habit
Originally uploaded by dckatastrophe

I'm desperately trying to break some bad habits. I should prolly follow through and stop biting my nails, but I think attaining a level of personal enlightenment should allow you some faults. I think biting my nails and sometimes admitting out loud that I think Kathy Griffin is funny are two faults worth tackling a little bit later.

I've tried all sorts of new-age, hippie fault-fixing shit, but it doesn't really work for me.

I can't all of a sudden relax my body in a systematic way and dream that I'm at the beach and can hear the roar of the ocean as I sync my pulse with mother nature.

I can't sit still and imagine a room, where I visualize myself putting awful situations my brain conjured up in the cabinets and closets of my mind and then visualize locking them up.

I can't sit around and think about bad habits and take the time to go "hmmm... self. How will you feel about these choices later?".

I can't even stand googling HOW to br
eak bad habits, scouring 43 things hoping that someone else like me might have asked Metafilter the secret to unlocking a similarly flawless existence.

Some bad habits make you realize that some people, when it comes down to it, like to suffer. Why else do we bite our nails down to the quick? Smoke a pack a day? Binge drink?

Part of the allure is the pain that follows. The inability to type any words involving "a" because your pinkie is bleeding. Silently enjoy your coughing spells. Smiling through your hangover.

I am therefore trying the age-old method of stopping a nasty habit. Every time I catch myself, I snap 5 rubber bands on my wrist.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not snapping the hell out of them. I'm not crying and smiling through it. It's something to take me out of my head and back to reality. It's something to remind me of how many times without even MEANING TO, I lead myself down a terrible path that takes a little while for missteps to be identified.

Also, I've just now gotten the short-hair fetish site guys to stop looking at my blog, so I'm in no rush to get the naughty rubber band fetish (hello! gum bands to you Brits!) underbelly of the interwebs interested in me trying to engage in a little head game against my head game.

Let me tell you, your brain learns things fast when you aren't allowed to float through life being that indulgent to its every whim.

The first day of my rubber band exercise last week I snapped them 31 times from the time I woke up until the time I went to bed. THIRTY-ONE times where I CAUGHT myself. Think of all the times I didn't realize I was even engaging in the fault! Think of when I felt JUSTIFIED in faulty behavior! Think of when I forgot to snap my rubber bands!

Today it was three.

And that, my friends, is progress.