The Saga Continues: Katje is still persona non laundra.

It’s the end of the month and yet again, I’m standing (well, sitting) here wondering what the hell just happened.

I’ve spent maybe a week, tops, at my new place — I’ve spent so much time running around between Coquitlam, Nanaimo, and Powell River — not to mention Ogre’s house — that I really haven’t had a chance to be at my new home. My herbs are suffering.

I’ve gotten very little writing done, and none of it on The Jade Star of Athering. I’ve worked very few hours. I haven’t the faintest clue what I’m writing for NaNoWriMo (because, let’s face it, I’m going to be participating — the event is a damn drug) and October, or NaNoPlanMo, is starting tomorrow.

I’ve done no Autumn Equinox celebration, and the full moon has passed me by (not to mention the rest of the moon cycle for the past month and a half, if not longer). Bad witch! No gingerbread cookie.

Oh, and yes — I still don’t have a working washer and dryer.

I’d had high hopes of having a working washer and dryer by the end of September. That was the plan — to have it all done by the 27th or 28th. But, as we know, plans just sort of roll off me like chicken crap off an armadillo.

The guys came over on Friday. By now we’re on a first name basis with each other. I offered them tea, because good hospitality is sort of a genetic imperative for Dutch folk. (At least it is for Frieslanders. Or maybe just van Loons. I admit to not visiting many other Dutchies at their homes; mainly we go clubbing, because we also have a genetic imperative to p-a-r-t-Y? I just told you; it’s genetic.)

They looked everything over and got to work…and it quickly became apparent that they didn’t have all the parts. The vent kit, yes. The clamp-thingamajigger, no.

They called the Brick and it turns out the clamp hasn’t been delivered yet. So when it does show up, they’ll come and finish hooking things up. So for another week, probably, I have no working washer and dryer.

I’m not at the freaking out and calling mom stage yet. Mostly because she’s in Nicaragua and is not only hard to reach but also can not do much from there. I’ll keep her apprised of the recent developments via email, and for now I’ll just keep on going. I’ll try to make October a far more productive month than September was. I’m also going to try to make it last longer, because it is my favorite month. Mind you, making it last longer may require far more knowledge of quantum physics and sorcery than I have, so I’ll probably just settle for it being more productive.

Happy end of September, everyone. Pray to whatever gods you follow, though preferably the gods of clean clothing, for working laundry for me by the end of this week.

The Saga of the Move: Part 4, or “The Pre/sequels We All Drank Enough to Forget”

(Parts One, Two, and Three.)

The worst of this move is over, thankfully. Moving out of a place is a lot harder than moving into. (Also I think there could be a sexual innuendo in that sentence, but I’m too tired to make it work. Feel free to give it a try in the comments.)

As soon as I got off the ferry I drove to Pirates and Fairies on Lake Sasamat. I arrived just as the sun was setting, which was around 8 p.m. I’d missed three meals out of eight of the weekend, as well as my big chance to actually make an announcement about selling my books. I ended up selling exactly zero copies of Bellica or glasstown, which did not help my already pretty sour mood. Missing half of an event I look forward to all year sucks lizard eggs.

I was very tired. So tired I spent most of my time sleeping, eating, and frakking (and not as much of that part as usual; that’s how tired I was). I didn’t even feel like dressing up, and that’s one of the parts I look forward to the most — running around in costume screaming “ARRRR I BE GLITTERTITS MCGEE! PREPARE TA BE BOARDED UNF UNF UNF.”

But, you know, it was good. It was a time away from the stress, as much as I can get away from something that follows me like a Time Beetle on my back. It was also lovely because my boyfriend is lovely, and madly in love with me. He saved bacon from Saturday morning for me in the cooler in his cabin. ALL DAY. And he saved me dinner, because he knows how much I love pulled pork. So when I arrived, I got to stuff my face with meaty goodness that symbolized his deep and abiding love for my crazy ass. That’s a pretty awesome thing to arrive to, especially when you’re an emotional eater. Eating food to symbolize love when that food actually does symbolize real love? Way cheaper than therapy.

Continue reading “The Saga of the Move: Part 4, or “The Pre/sequels We All Drank Enough to Forget””

The Saga of the Move: Part 3, or “Return of the Clusterfuck”

(Read Part 1 and Part 2.)

The apartment in Coquitlam needed to be ready for me to move into. This meant there needed to be space for my stuff, first of all, and that my grandparents’ stuff needed to be moved out. That is, we needed to move out what we could of my grandparents’ stuff — part of the reason I had to get rid of my bed is that we couldn’t get rid of the two singles in their old bedroom (it’s like an episode of I Love Lucy every night, except instead of my husband in the second bed, it’s my mom — nothing says awkward more than being 26 and having to share a bedroom with your mom; luckily, she’s travelling a lot and spending a lot of time in her other house in Powell River. Also my boyfriend’s house is close to my new apartment and he has his own bedroom).

Something my mom had noticed a week and a half or so before the end of the month was that the washer was leaking. It was a stacking unit and it had been in the apartment since Oma had bought the place — 20 years ago. It was also a pretty good washing machine and dryer combo — it had never let us down before. So mom called a repair guy.

It was unfixable. The bottom had completely rusted through and we needed to get a completely new washer. And dryer, because a stacking unit is useless if one part is broken.

So mom went to the Brick, and ordered some new fancy HE (High Efficiency) machines for the place. They were separate, but you can stack them if you have a kit, and she also got a drawer to put underneath the washer into which I can put laundry detergent. This has the added benefit of making the washer and dryer tall, meaning I don’t have to bend as much. It’s not going to be as easy on short stuff mom, but then what kind of daughter would I be if I didn’t help my mom with household chores? (A shitty one, if you need the answer spelled out for you. If you’re an adult and living with your parents, you better fucking pull your own weight around the house.)

The Brick dudes arrived shortly thereafter with the washer and dryer, and of course mom had to be there for that. Except…oh, they didn’t have the stacking kit. So they put the washer on the drawer and left the dryer in the dining room until they could come back with the stacking kit and get it all set up. The next possible date they could arrive? Friday, September 7th.

Mom may have blacked out with rage, waking up with dried blood under her nails. I can neither confirm nor deny that.

Continue reading “The Saga of the Move: Part 3, or “Return of the Clusterfuck””

The Saga of the Move: Part 2, or “The Stuff I Own Strikes Back”

(Read Part 1 here.)

We now had more problems than we’d started out the day with: not only did we no longer have the use of TG’s truck to get rid of some of the big stuff, including the mattress and box spring, but now we had to work on getting the truck to Courtenay Car Centre and getting it fixed.

We worked on the second problem first. Mom arranged for her and TG to wait by the truck for BCAA to tow it to the car place (this is two days later). She would then come down to Nanaimo to help me, as well as somehow cramming my massive mattress into the Pegasus (her Volvo station-wagon; mine is the Galactica — yes we’re giant nerds).

I was expecting mom to arrive at my place mid-afternoon, but she was several hours late. Apparently she and TG had waited in the blistering hot sun for BCAA for over two hours. They couldn’t call, because his phone was out of minutes, and she’d forgotten her phone at home. So finally she drove around in search of a phone she could use, and called BCAA again, asking where the hell they were, and it turns out the original request for a tow had gotten lost in the system. She arranged for them to tow without her presence, which for some reason hadn’t been possible before (yay silly company policies), and then came down to my place.

She’d instructed me to fold my mattress in half and tie it with rope. It’s all foam, so this was feasible…just not easy. She walked in to find me lying on top of it in an awkward position, shouting more bile and vitriol at the thing than I thought I had in me. She came and helped, and with our combined fattitude and lexicon of swear words we got it done.

Being fat can be incredibly useful when one is moving or packing a very full suitcase. I’m just saying.

Continue reading “The Saga of the Move: Part 2, or “The Stuff I Own Strikes Back””

Lost in Coquitlamfield with a drunk GPS

I just got back from driving my mom to the airport. She’s headed for Nicaragua for a month on a business trip. Okay, so there’s some personal time in there too. It’s a month-long trip to Nicaragua; she’d be crazy not to.

I should say, mom drove to the airport, and I took her car back home. This is because time was of the essence while going there and she’s more used to Vancouver streets and so knew her way to the airport, whereas I’d be flailing and shouting “AH WHERE ARE WE” every five minutes.

I just moved to Coquitlam, and while I’ve been visiting my boyfriend in Delta for two years and driving while over here, it’s never been much more than “ferry to boyfriend’s, boyfriend’s to apartment in Coquitlam, Coquitlam to boyfriend’s, boyfriend’s to ferry, sometimes Coquitlam to ferry…”. The bulk of my driving experience remains in the past places I’ve lived since I was 15: Hawaii, Powell River, and Nanaimo. Oh, and the route from San Diego to Vancouver, BC, but let’s face it — so long as you avoid cities driving on the I-5 is pretty damn straightforward. (Mind you, I did drive in L.A. itself — that trip was when I was still learning to drive. But I digress.)

There are a lot of places in Vancouver and the GVRD that I know. Vaguely. If I end up there, I’ll say “OH, I know where we are!” and then a minute or two later be completely lost again. Or if you asked me about the Front St. and Begbie St. intersection in New West, I can picture it perfectly in my head. Or the Wise Hall on Adanac St. Or Granville Island and Fountain Way. Scott Road and Nordel Way. My friends’ house and driveway in Serial Killer-ville Cloverdale.  But ask me how to get from point A to point B? Hahahahahahah I don’t have a fucking clue.

Continue reading “Lost in Coquitlamfield with a drunk GPS”

The Saga of the Move: Part 1, or “A New Home”

Some of you may know that I moved recently. I talked about it a bit before my blogging, social media, and Youtube hiatus — not a planned hiatus, by the way, I just got so bogged down with the realities of moving and other work (like finishing the proofing of Bellica‘s third edition) that I literally had no time to write or video myself doing stupid shit.

All of my moves have been difficult, but this one seemed harder than most of them. Probably because it was just me and my mom doing most of the heavy lifting, and I have a spinal injury (that is now doing a lot worse than it was). Also because the place I was moving into was even smaller than my two-room basement suite that I’d resided in for one and half years, and I had to not only pack my belongings but, horror among horrors, sort and organize them so I could send half of my stuff to storage in Powell River (read: mom’s garage). I also had to get rid of stuff. My biggest problem was my double-sized foam mattress that I dearly loved.

I’m not really good at either of these things. Well, ok, I am good at organization, but it takes me a long time, and I didn’t have that time in August. So it was very stressful, trying to get it done SOOPER QUICK, as my timetable demanded. I was also trying to get out of my place a day early so I could make it to Pirates and Fairies on Lake Sasamat early on the first day (Friday, the 31st of August). Pirates and Fairies is an annual event that I’ve attended since 2010. It’s where I met my boyfriend, and his mom runs the whole weekend. It’s a hell of a lot of fun and I was planning on being a vendor and selling books there this year, so I needed to get there on time.

You can probably guess by my saying the above that I didn’t make it on time.

This move was a clusterfuck of clusterfucks. Each cluster of fucks was created out of smaller clusters of fucks, down and down and down until we got to hypothetical particle clusterfucks.

Continue reading “The Saga of the Move: Part 1, or “A New Home””

In which our heroine posts pictures of zir garden

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Proof, more or less, that I am not a complete failure at gardening. In that pot is thyme, lavender, rosemary, basil, and parsley. Not only have I kept three plants alive for weeks,I have successfully grown two new ones from seeds.

In light of this success I cannot be terribly depressed by how my roses are doing.

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Even if they are my favorite flower. I do have faith they’ll pull through, which probably proves what an eternal optimist I am.

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Also, there is more lavender flowering in my yard, so even though I didn’t plant it, how can I be sad?

In other news, I have been too busy this week for a vlog. Apologies; you’ll get one next week. What have I been doing? Ah, well. That info is currently classified, but you should expect a big reveal sometime soon. Suffice it to say I have been working very hard.

And as I am writing this on my phone, at three o’clock in the morning, it’s time for me to sign off. I’ll write something more in-depth later. Probably Tuesday.

Edited to add: how obvious was it that I wrote it from my phone by the awful formatting? Ugh. All fixed! Better for your eyes — and my reputation.

 

Recycling and Compost and How They’re Important, or something, not sure what the message is here, really

I would be more inclined to participate in my city’s compost and recycling curbside pickup programs if they made it easier.

I know, that sounds like so much White Whine, but consider:

  • There is no direct way from my yard to the front curb. All entry to my house is in the alleyway. So anything I want picked up at the curb I must walk all the way around. We have asked them if we can put stuff out at the end of the alleyway, which would just create one more pickup for them which is right next to another pickup, but they have refused our request. It would be too complicated! Another stop, right in between two current ones? MIND IS BLOWN.
  • The yellow recycling bags are the holy godsdamned grail and they get stolen pretty often — especially if you don’t get out there right away to grab the empty one, which I don’t, because long walk and spoons.
  • Also someone stole my green bin previously, and at another point in time someone stole the lid to our garbage can. I’m of the opinion that this keeps happening because the garbage dudes just fling these things friggin haphazardly into the ditch when they’re done instead of setting them down nicely in front of the house, like I do. This sends the message that these things do not belong to any one house, and therefore are free for the taking. Or I just live in a bad neighborhood no, it’s the city’s fault, I’m sure of it. Dear garbage-and-etc-people-of-undetermined-gender-but-I’m-assuming-you-are-dudebros-just-because: if you’re going to fling ’em about then fling them over my fence so I don’t have to walk three miles to retrieve them.Would that be so hard? Really?
  • The schedule is some sort of complicated vodou ritual and in order to understand it I must pay offerings to the lwa. Which on principle I have nothing against, being polytheist and fairly eclectic and free of white-lighter-fluff-bunny morality, but come on — three Irish deities and most of the Hellenic pantheon is all I can handle. Give a tired Witch a break here.

Continue reading “Recycling and Compost and How They’re Important, or something, not sure what the message is here, really”

Tales from the Fat Side: Coldstone’s Cold Shoulder

Mmmm Coldstone
A Coldstone’s by itself. (Photo credit: Michael D. Dunn)

Today a friend and I decided to go to Tim Horton’s for some Coldstone’s ice cream. I was really happy when Coldstone’s came up here from the States, as it had been a favourite of mine when I lived in Hawaii. The fact that it’s in Tim Horton’s means it’s easier to convince my boyfriend to go and get it, so win-win.

There are several Timmy-Coldstone’s in Vancouver and the GVRD, but only one in Nanaimo. (There’s also one in Duncan, which is a 100-km round trip. Not happening.) There are other, cheaper ice cream places in Nanaimo, any of which we could have gone to — but we wanted Coldstone’s. It’s special. And it was a really hot day. Also we make no apologies for wanting whatever the fuck we want and eating it too — in public, even.

Here is the point where I tell you something you already know: I’m fat. So is my friend. And while we are both feisty, fat, awesome individuals, we still struggle with self-esteem issues. Because we have spent our entire lives being told that we are inhuman, horrible disgusting blobs that should kill ourselves for allowing ourselves to be so fat and offensive to the eyes of society. How dare we breathe your air and take up all your space with our fat! How dare we have big bellies! How dare we eat ice cream or junkfood — this is, of course, no problem if you’re skinny and it’s all you eat, because obviously thinness is the only measure of health. No, because we are already fat we should eat nothing but salad and watercress and wear nothing but sackcloth and ashes.

So, let’s start from that. We’re fat, and we’re awesome people and we deserve to be treated like human beings. Regardless of our fatness or awesomeness. We’re human.

We’ve gone to this Coldstone’s before. Almost every time we go, we stand there for a long time before someone serves us.

Today we stood there for 10 minutes. There were several people walking around behind the counter, and it wasn’t terribly busy. Each person ignored us.

Continue reading “Tales from the Fat Side: Coldstone’s Cold Shoulder”