Monday, March 31, 2008

Have a Nice Trip

Time and again, I share with people my almost stories - like the time I almost died from a scorpion sting, or when I almost made an amazing, game winning catch in a softball game, or when I almost kicked someone's butt for sitting in my seat on an airplane. The vast majority of my almost stories, however, are more focused on when, at least 3 or 4 times a week, I almost wipe out.

I've developed a bad habit of bringing up in every conversation with Curtis all my recent near misses in the world of 101 Ways Kate Can Wipe Out While Walking On Flat Ground. Once when I was walking through the lobby at work, late, in wet sneakers, I slipped on the floor and slid all the way into an open elevator door, almost taking out not just myself, but also a lawyer from my company, who happened to be carrying an extra hot venti coffee. Almost...

Tonight as I was walking over to borrow a drill from Curtis, I almost wiped out when my heel of my rather high (and hot for the record) heel wedged itself a gap in the brick sidewalk. In my stumbling and sudden halt in the forward motion I had been making, two people who had been following too close behind me almost rammed right into me. Thankfully for all of us, we all avoided the collision, I unwedged my shoe and carried on my way.

As I headed down the slope towards his condo, I remembered the stairs that were to come. They are haphazard stairs formed into the slope of a hill supposedly to look very natural and as though they were always there but what they really are is a giant safety disaster waiting to happen for anyone who is either a) not entirely sober, b) not the most stable of walkers, or most disastrously c) a combination of the two (guilty). None of these stairs are the same size, depth, or space apart. The center of each stair is brick that since it was built has now sunk into the ground and is not only not level but now has lots of little corners and pieces to trip you up constantly. Around this ankle-death trap are giant 2x4s 'framing' the brick, but not level with the brick of course, so if you don't trip on the brick, you will certainly catch a heel or toe on the wood and face-plant right into the brick. In my worst case scenario thinking mind, I immediately start thinking about how embarrassing it would be to wipe out while walking down the stairs with Curtis waiting for me at the bottom, with limbs flailing in the wind behind me.

Three stairs from the bottom, I look up to see him waiting for me, in a t-shirt and sandals, in the rain, and so I now feel compelled to hurry up so he doesn't have to stand out in the rain any longer than necessary. In my rush, I almost wipe out on a step. I catch myself just barely, take a deep breath, and pray he did not just see that, please he did not just see that oh goodness, please no.

When I caught up with him, he remarks how successful and uneventful his run in the rain was without any near misses or wipe outs on his part. I tell him as we walk towards his little gate house thing about how he nearly just saw me wipe out on the stairs (he hadn't noticed), and how I also had a near miss when my heel was stuck in the brick by the metro, but made it unscathed. He laughed and commented for as many stories as he's heard about me almost wiping out, he's never seen me anywhere near even a mild disaster and isn't entirely convinced any of it really happens.

...he just had to say that.

As we walked into the gate house area, I had only about 16 stairs to make it back down to level ground. I had come over after work and thus still had my work clothes on, which today meant my brown trousers, 2 sizes too big, and now too long, even with heels on. These pants are a little wide legged and also have large cuffs at the bottom. My heels (the hot ones previously mentioned) are very adorable pointed toe shoes with a 2.5ish inch heel - a very narrow, sharp, easy-to-trip-on, heel.

I started down the stairs, not holding on the railing, as I had a bag and purse in one hand and I was using the other to explain something that at the time was v v important. 3 steps from the bottom, my left leg goes toward the next stair but my left heel finds my right pant leg cuff instead. I'm making a forward motion; I can't stop. And there's only one thing to do - jump.

I push off with my right leg (a mere 5 feet in front of me is a giant brick wall and 7 feet to my left is a nice short flight of stairs I could fall down while I'm at it) while my left foot is very much stuck in my pants and leap towards my very probable broken ankle. 2 thoughts are running through my mind - 1. this is not going to end well and 2. I can't ruin these pants - they were too expensive! why did I ever spend this much money on pants I will just end up destroying falling down an elevator shaft or in front of a metro car, or maybe tripping on perfectly dry and evenly spaced stairs in front of Curtis!!! With nothing else to do but try for the impossible, I pull off an amazingly spectacular acrobatic feat of pulling my left heel out of my pants, maneuvering both feet under me, and sticking the landing. In heels. Without ruining my pants, breaking a heel, ankle, or anything but a little piece of pride that I've made it three months without falling like a total idiot in front of Curtis.

Curtis rushed down the last few stairs to quickly grab my arm and survey the damage, fully expecting broken, or at least very sprained, ankles, feet, legs, mangled flesh, etc.

"Holy Crap! Are you okay?"


"That scared the crap out of me!"


"You're sure you're okay?"

"yup. but now you know, I'm really not making up all this falling down crap."

"Yeah, no kidding."

Had a nice trip. See ya next fall.

Monday, March 24, 2008

She Shoots, She Scores

I find myself feeling a little spoiled. To be perfectly honest, I really love my life in DC. I live in a great apartment, I work for a good company and for good people. My work may not be the most interesting or important work but it does allow me to maintain a certain level of comfort that frankly, I completely enjoy. I haven't packed a lunch for over 2 years. I haven't ordered a pizza at home in over a year because a buffet of them are available every Friday for lunch. As far as the ridiculous materialistic side of my work (and probably life in general) goes, I really want for nothing.

I have enjoyed a bit of a lucky streak lately. My company owns seats in a box at the Verizon center that I have had the privilege to enjoy more than once. Since moving to DC, I have been to 6 different concerts and professional sporting events and have only paid for tickets one time. Last night was another freebie for Kate. My old roommate, Favre, from the house-who-will-not-be-named emailed on Friday to invite myself and our other former roommate, Rocky, to go to the game on Sunday. He didn't say what game (hockey, basketball, pro, college, etc) but the word 'free' was in the invite so I of course said yes.

I am well aware of the phrase 'beggars can't be choosers' but when it comes to seats, even when the tickets are free, I don't want crappy ones. The only time I paid for my seat was for a Wizards game. I paid a whopping 20 bucks and got what I paid for - second to last row in the ENTIRE arena-so high up the players were but specks running around on a postage stamp of a court. This is no way to watch a game.

I met Favre and company at a bar before the game for a quick drink and catch up session, then the tickets were handed out in case we were separated.


Wizards vs. Pistons
6 rows back from the court, close enough to watch the Pistons lose and awesome enough to not feel entirely guilty about staying out too late, drinking too much, and paying for it dearly all day today at work.

I love my life.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Feeling Hot Hot Hot

Let's just sum up this week (even though it's only Thursday) to be known as the week of bored frustration. Not frustratingly bored, just bored frustration. I made some colossal mistakes at work, which although somewhat funny now (I somehow confused Santa Monica and San Francisco and thus sent my boss to SFO instead of LAX, which he was thrilled's just California - how far apart can places be? Oh......), another boss has the flu/SARS/plague and has been out, so I've had plenty of time to be completely frustrated about one teensy weensy work issue that was supposed to be solved a month ago and was officially shot down yesterday, and thus Pissy, thy name is Kate.

I took out my frustration on my usual target - the cutting board. I decided to make a nice spicy chili which would a) give me many, many things to chop chop chop, b) give me an excuse to drink some beer and c) have a nice therapy/cooking session, which I haven't been doing much of lately. I found a great recipe for ground turkey and black bean chili and went to town.

When I threw the spices in (chili pepper, cayenne pepper, and cumin oh my!) it looked like an awful lot of heat but oh well, I thought, that's what the beer is for (not that I'm drinking when angry, it's to kill the burn! see! Not abusing alcohol, just loving it for its medicinal qualities!).

I let it sit and simmer for a good 40 minutes, letting all that smoky flavor work its magic, then was starving and was more than ready to crack open some high quality Yuengling. I scooped it up, properly garnished the dish, the set it down. (I am a lukewarm soup eater. I don't like hot liquids of any kind - (that's the devil's temperature!) I prefer all drinks, soups, etc to be a nice moderately hot but more cool temperature before it touches these lips.)

I flipped on to my embarrassing addiction of a tv show, gave my soup a song to cool down, then dug right in. And promptly burned my mouth. Burned it bad enough that it would not have mattered if I had a half dozen habaneros in there, I wasn't tasting a thing. Bummer.

In other news, AI has a new ending song. I haven't really ever watch the show (no really, I haven't) but for some reason, I'm a little addicted this year. Last night, the unveiled the new we're sorry but nobody likes you song - "Celebrate Me Home." Won't even try to lie about it, I completely teared up (maybe it was a delayed reaction to my tongue injury...but probably not since I tear up every time it comes on my iPod) - I LOVE that song. I can't say I'm too thrilled Ruben is trying to improve on the perfection that is Kenny Loggins but wow, nicely done. Daughtry's song was good, the "Had a Bad Day" was ironic and almost a good song, but they really did finally nail the all important aspect of the show - song selection. Well done, AI peeps, well done.