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Monday, March 30, 2009

Free Wi Fi Hotspots in the US

I am passing on the information to you in an effort to be more loving to the whole (one of 3 New Year's Resolutions). Personally, you can find me at Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf or Panera Bread since they offer free internet.

Here are some more:

I'm thinking if I paid for hotspot access that I might not feel like I have to buy food I shouldn't be eating or coffee that adds too many calories or spending money I really don't have that adds to more than the 9.99 access fee for the wi-fi hotspot. I'm still deciding between a netbook and a smartphone and if I should switch to Tmobile from Verizon or if I can afford both.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Bank Annoyances

Wamu is officially Chase and somehow I didn't get a credit card statement last month. I wonder if they will excuse the late charge? My Citibank UPromise card was sold to Bank of America and now I can't access anything online. There is no record of my account with Citibank. I called BofA and they can't access anything from last month. I tried signing up for my account online and it says the records don't match. ARGH!! went to Ross and the magnetic strip isn't working so they returned my items to another card. I insisted that I wasn't going to take a store credit cause I still have the card and the receipt. (I had to buy most of those things for the mystery shopping job.) I went to Nordstrom and they told me that a sweater that I was trying to return had already been returned. It's an $80 sweater. How do I even know what is true anymore??? I got slapped with a bill from my Wamu/Chase credit card (along with late charges) that I thought I had already paid off completely. All I can say is YIKES!! I'm just trying to get my finances straightened out!!! I'm so confused!!!! I've got money on my mind right now.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Justifying the Cell Phone Upgrade

It seems like business if booming--every time I go to a cell phone store, there are lines for sales and service. I have watched iPhones fly off the shelves. I don't have a ton of money after all the changes I have gone through, but I can think of lots of reasons to update to a Blackberry Storm or an iPhone...
1. I can be online or blogging while at the gym on an excercise bike.
2. Whereever I go I can have everything I need with me--no worrying about how I can get home to check emails.
3. The plan seems totally reasonable for what it delivers.
4. I won't have to try to find a hot spot or free internet location.
5. If I leave directions at home, I can look them up with my phone.
6. I can fill out a mystery shop while at the location without fearing being discovered since literally everyone is wired these days.
7. Anytime I have a wait anywhere, I can hop online and check stuff.
8. It's better than getting a netbook.

Now, what would Jesus do? Would he get the iPhone or the Blackberry?

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

An Unusual Investment

I'm proud of myself because I finally got through today after a lukewarm attempt on Thursday. I think I was a bit too obtuse.
Savvy: Hi Czech, it's Savvy.
Czech: Hey.
Savvy: Umm...I heard about an non-bank investment and I wanted to get your opinion on it.
Czech: Cool. I'm with someone right now. But anything you need, I'll help you with.
Savvy: Yes, they told me...so...
Czech: Let me get your number again and I'll call you back.

He didn't call back. Not even professionally. Darn. It was just nice to hear, anything you need, I'll help you with. Of course I dissected that with a Mike who told me it doesn't really mean anything and he doesn't really know.
Mike: I think I should go for it. You really have nothing to lose.

So today, I took that leap.
Savvy: Hey, remember me? The teacher?
Czech: Yes, the singer.
Savvy: Um, well, I was calling about that investment I mentioned.
Czech: Oh, yes.
Savvy: I was thinking about that 3 dollars we were saying you owe me and I think you should invest it in getting some Ben & Jerry's with me.
Czech: Oh! Hehe. That sounds very tempting.
Savvy: That was the non-bank investment I was calling about. I figure if it doesn't work out, you could politely excuse yourself after half an hour like we were talking about before.
Czech: I'm with someone right now. Can I get your home or cell phone number so I can call you back about that?
Savvy: Sure thing.

He was, at least, flattered. I called Mike right after to tell him the news.
Mike: Just don't let your emotions get too involved. He said it was tempting, he may have a girlfriend. I just hope for your sake he's unattached. But you put the ball in his court.
Savvy: But are you proud of me?
Mike: Yes, I am. It's a big step out of your comfort zone.
Savvy: Unfortunately, now this offer has an expiration date.
Mike: You should give him a week to think about it.
Savvy: Um, OK. After all, it took me about a week to work up the courage.

A dude cashier at Vitamin City said it was a great story.

He didn't call this evening, but I was happy and I'm still smiling when I think about it.

In showbiz terms, I know I had a great audition--even if I don't get the part.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Pick A Winner

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.
When you buy a lemon of a car, there are laws to protect the consumer.
If you pick a lemon of a guy, RUN! For some reason, we take the lemons too personally. Picking a relationship is like picking fruit. You have to make sure you aren't getting bad ones.

Picking a relationship is like picking through fruit at the supermarket. I don't know about you, but I scrutinize that fruit before I take it home. Is it ripe? Does it look good? Is it on sale? If the fruit is bad, we don't blame ourselves. We just think we should have picked better.

My guy friends are giving me advice lately that amounts to a mound of horse puckey. One told me to just use men like men use women---do it to them first. I tried, but it made me ill. It was like trying to eat around large, slimy bruises in a banana. They tell me that happy people are more attractive. Yes, it's true, they are. It means that they may attract quantity, but not necessarily quality. Just remember, all kinds of pests like fruit and try to take a few nibbles, too.

If you find a worm, you throw it out. You don't berate yourself and think you should have been happier when you picked that fruit, worn a nicer outfit, etc. We think the most ridiculous things about ourselves. If only I were prettier, happier, more spiritual, more _________________, there wouldn't have been, a worm, a mass of fruit flies, bruises, mold, dry spots, deformities or it wouldn't have dried out.

Those things were there long before you got there, sweetie.

Pick better. Only take the good fruit.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Very Personal Banking

I was waiting to meet with an investment banker when my heart skipped a beat. I hoped it was the man I had just seen. Tall, dark, handsome, blue eyes, a mustache, Czech. It was love on a mystery shop! I struggled to listen. We had better chemistry than some dates I had been on. My eyes batted without my consent. I tried not to look at him, because when I did, I felt intense heat creeping across my cheeks. Was he trying not to look at me too?

I tried not to think how it would feel for him to kiss me with that mustache. I tried to think about investments. It was difficult. If you can keep up with what they are saying it's not so bad to mystery shop the,. If the banker is very good looking, it makes it easier. Except when he is so good looking to you that you can't look at him. I've always had a thing for Czech guys every since junior high when a guy named Jeff was really mean to me in science class. I had a huge crush on him. Blond hair, blue eye, hair parted in the middle, totally preppy, Czech.

Somehow the subject of how great his bank was came up.
Czech: Other banks charge you ATM fees, we don't.
Savvy: Really? Cause I actually got charged $3 to use the ATM last week. It was an emergency and I had to get the money out anyway. (It was a mystery shop where I had to pay $200 in cash.)
Czech: Wow. $3. That's alot.
Savvy: I know. You owe me $3.

We both smiled and laughed; then it was back to business. Sort of.

Czech: I have to ask you some questions to get a better picture of your financial situation. Is that OK with you?
Savvy: Yes. (He asked name, occupation, etc.)
Czech: Are you married?
Savvy: No, though I've had lots of really bad dates. (fishing.)
Czech: I know what you mean. You wonder if it's going to end.
Savvy: So true. (Be still my heart.)
Czech: Is there a polite way to end things after half an hour?
Savvy: I'm still trying to figure that out. (No mention of a girlfriend.)

Somehow it came up that we both love choral music, agree that the arts are and expression of God's gifts, Subway, the same flavor of Ben & Jerry's and agree that Obama doesn't float our boats. I was supposed to use a fictitious name and I gave him my real name. I couldn't bear the thought of lying to him because I wanted to see him again. And mystery shopping is sort of lying to people. In the business we call it "enacting a scenario." I played with the tassel on my purse because I was so conflicted.

Savvy: So, what are we going to do about that $3?
Czech: Well, maybe when you come back for another appointment, I'll see about having some ice cream for you since I owe you $3.

The real question, is:
How do I get to finding out if he was just greasing the wheels on a professional level or if he might have been actually interested?

I have nothing to lose. Maybe I should call. I'm nervous. Here's what I'm hoping for:
Savvy: I think we were discussing the wrong investments.
Czech: Why do you say that?
Savvy: I ... well... found myself wondering what would happen if we took that $3 and invested it in Subway or Ben & Jerry's. Who knows what that investment could turn into.
Czech: It's not an FDIC insured product...
Savvy: It could lose it's value in the current volatile market.
Czech: True.
Savvy: Ummm...I'm really not sure what direction to take....perhaps you can call me...personally...later...so we can discuss it freely.
Czech: Yes...

Here's hoping the Czech is worth checking out.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

What's Wrong With The Way We Date

There is something wrong with the way we date when I feel more special at the bank, a high end retail shop or the corner store than I do out with a guy.

The business wants my MONEY and the man wants my .... The business seems to be working harder to please. They call me back, they call me to follow up and make sure I had a good experience with them, they want to make sure I don't go with someone else, they talk about wanting a relationship with me. They make me feel special! They are trying to sell me on the idea that they are great and will be good to me. They don't get angry if I say I want to wait.

I'm just saying, this is messed up.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Love and the Mystery Shop

Mystery shopping and love... Who would have thought it was possible? And then on an auto shop, I locked eyes with Latin. Could it be love at first sight? He was my salesperson on an auto shop, and I was shopping him... Let's just say love was not a part of the report. I certainly don't want to lose my job or make anyone lose theirs, though both of us could.

I first thought of some kind of connection with him when he said that most women don't like the same music he likes.
Savvy: Really? What kind of music do you like?
Latin: Oldies.
Savvy: What kind of oldies? Like KRTH 101? 1950s? DuWop?
Latin: Yes. And stuff like Andrea Bocelli.
Savvy: I love that kind of stuff. My station all of last year for my commute was KRTH 101.
Latin: Wow. Really?
Savvy: I know how important music is. It means everything to me.

He smiled and seemed pleased. Back to finding a car to test drive. He showed me the interior and I leaned the seat all the way back. I wondered how unprofessional it would be to kiss my salesperson...and then snapped out of it. What was I thinking??? Back to work!!

The test drive seemed more like a date than a test drive. I really started to wonder if he felt the same thing and just had to be professional. When we got to the point of talking about numbers...
Savvy: well, buying a new car is a big commitment and I'm not sure I'm ready.
Latin: Let me give you my phone number here at the dealership, it's my direct line and you can call me anytime.
Savvy: Well, if you really want me to reach you, why don't you give me your phone number at home? Or your email?
Latin: I'll give you both.
Savvy: OK

I didn't know what I would actually do with the information I had been given, but it felt so nice to have hope that love could thrive among the mystery shops.

Look for Part 2...

Harsh (Part 1)

This happened few months ago, but I am just now finally telling the bitter tale.

I made the mistake of telling Tall how I felt. I even cried a little bit. I told him about being in a relationship only about 20% of the time. That shining moment was brought to you by Kirin Light--a 22 ounce beer. I also revealed some personal secrets that I regretted revealing. I won't reveal them here either, but he became very judgmental. He decided I was depressed and gave me a number for mental health services.

I am extremely concerned about you, but at this juncture, my having any long conversations with you, in person, on the phone, or by e-mail, will do neither of us any good.

You are engaging in a number of self-destructive behavors at the moment. Even if I was of a mind to want to be in a romantic relationship with you, given what you are doing to yourself, I would be extremely foolish to want to be in such a relationship.

Please do not call, write, stop/drive by my home. If I see you in public (e.g. at an event), I promise to acknowledge you and talk to you, again BRIEFLY. However, if you do not IMMEDIATELY seek professional help for your problems, that will change. If you do get help, and I do see that you are getting better and you are making better judgments in your life, I will be overjoyed and we can resume our previous status.

I know that I am sounding harsh. I am doing so, because you do have many fine qualities, but you are obviously a very troubled and sad individual at the moment, and I seriously believe that your best interests would be served by you focusing on getting yourself well. While it may appear that I am being cruel to you, but I am not. I am trying to be your friend, and I do not wish to watch you destroy yourself anymore than you have managed to do since I have met you.

I would probably count this as being more sincere had I not seen this behavior before with him. And now, suddenly he's worried about me stalking him. He should be flattered to think that he thinks so much of himself that I would do anything more than just blog about him.

I quote the Smiths, "In my life why do I give valuable time to people who I'd rather kick in the eye?"

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Taking A Swing

Sometimes you have far too much ammo against your friends. Swing has been depressed about his ex-wife recently. As a recap, she cheated on him. Recap from my side, that was the kind of woman she was and that's what you get when you start sleeping with someone you don't care about yet, and don't require that they care about you to sleep with you. Why should they then care if they sleep with someone else? And why should you care that they did either? Seriously folks, these are byproducts of a messed up approach to relationships. Did I say that? No.

But let me tell you what he said to me.

Swing: Maybe you shouldn't go out on dates anymore because guys expect to start a sexual relationship when you go out with them.
Savvy: After 3 dates.
Swing: Well.
Savvy: When I don't even know if they care about me.
Swing: Well, maybe you should find other ways to meet guys like being friends with them.
Savvy: I've been friends with guys for years and years without anything going anywhere.
Swing: Well it's just that when you go out on a date, it raises the expectations.
Savvy: So I should never go out to dinner with a man again.
Swing: No, I don't mean that.
Savvy: Weren't you in love with at least the first few people you were with?
Swing: Oh yes, and I had such vast experience. I didn't really require that.
Savvy: So I should just give it up without even knowing if a guy cares about me.
Swing: I think nowadays you can't expect a guy to make an emotional commitment first.
Savvy: That makes so much sense. You know Stever Harvey from Saturday Night Live wrote a book called Act Like A Lady, Think Like A Man and he said that a woman should make a man wait 90 days like a probationary period.
Swing: That's ridiculous. You can't expect a guy to wait by some formula.
Savvy: I'm just saying what he said in his book. You're asking me to do something that I don't know how to do. I've only been with one guy ever and I don't know how to just give it up to some guy who I don't even know if he cares or if he's worth being with. I want to get to know someone first.
Swing: That's why I said you should be friends with them.
Savvy: I should have become a nun is what you're saying.
Swing: No. I don't know what I'm saying.
Savvy: So by your rules, how many guys should I sleep with before I meet someone who is really worthwhile? 2 or 3 more? How about 10? How about 50? Is 50 too many? What do you REALLY think about a women who has slept with that many guys? How would you really feel about her? Be honest.
Swing: I don't know.
Savvy: Oh yeah, and what STD am I going to risk getting with all of those guys who I'm sleeping with who I don't even know if I can trust? And how many women have they slept with?
Swing: I don't know. I have to eat. Let me think about it. I'll try and come up with an answer.
Savvy: Fine. Eat. Whatever. Later.

Like I care. (Right now I don't. I'm mad.) Being friends with Tall got me heartache. Being friends with Swing might get him a fat lip. Yeah right--with my gimpy shoulder.

What does care even mean? I didn't say marriage, I mean care--calling when you say you will, being there when you say you will, knowing if you like someone. After 3 dates I'm not even sure if I really like someone, why would I have sex with them? Who is really stupid in this scenario?

Wow. Christianity requires that we wait till marriage--our interpretation of keeping the marriage bed pure. I would be willing to wait for love and now that isn't even available. I'm supposed to just be a whore. In that case, what does it matter if the people involved are married, single, committed or anything else. No wonder our relationships are so messed up.