Sunday, February 15, 2009

Stupid Cupid! Quit Ignoring Me!

It's Valentine's Day, blah, blah, blah.

Since the cute little diaper-wearing, arrow-shooting midget apparently can't see the bullseye I painted on my tush, it's yet another year where I spend my day at my desk rather than in the arms of some cutie.

My daughters have been a tad more fortunate in love.

Beth drove to Bolivar so she could (ahem) "watch the sunset" with Captain Hormone. Yeah, I know. When you go to the Bolivar Dam to "watch the sunset," the chances are that you'll miss the heavenly splendor of the sky because the car windows are gonna be too fogged up with teenage hormones to be able to see anything.

Later, he made reservations to eat at Georgio's Grille. Since their dates usually consist of him coming to our house and sitting on the couch watching movies every Saturday, this date was a pretty big thing and Beth was just ecstatic. Unfortunately, she didn't think to hand her camera to anyone so I could have a picture of the two lovebirds together.

I got a text message from her shortly after she finished eating and said she had the steak and salad and they shared crabcakes as an appetizer. In her words, it was "foodgasmic!"

To which I replied "Yay!! If you had a foodgasm, that meant that there was no need for a real orgasm. That makes Mom a very happy camper!" Still...I counted the condoms to see if any were missing. He IS an 18-year-old horndog, after all.

Heather also got to spend some time with her boyfriend. I drove her to Canton so she could meet up with him at Borders Bookstore.

Yes, that is a kilt. If you knew Paul, you'd never be shocked. It's just him.

They went to see the movie Coraline in 3D. It totally messed with Heather's head...which is her way of saying it totally rocked. Dinner was McDonald's, which was exactly what Heather wanted. She wore a formal dress. No, I'm not kidding. Yes, she knew she was going to fast food. THAT's why she wanted to wear a formal gown. Only normal people wear jeans and a t-shirt to Mickey-D's. She's far from normal.

The date finished with a few ankle-thrashing hours spent at an indoor ice skating rink.

Oh, and in case you are wondering the answer to the question that goes through everyone's minds when seeing a guy in a kilt...

Nice girls ask.

Naughty girls find out for themselves.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Spending Spree...The grand finale

My last of the grand purchases arrived yesterday.

Say hello to my new best friend: Tivo.

Wait a minute...surely I've mentioned my love affair with Tivo before, right? Oh yeah. The little guy entered my life in 2003, several years before cable companies decided to rent out their inferior generic DVR models (from what I hear, the difference between Tivo and the cable company's generic DVR is like the difference between a Prime Rib and a Big Mac. Sure, they'll both feed you, but if you want to enjoy the process, go for the good stuff).

Well, a few months ago when I bought the spiffy new flat screen HD TV for the family room, I just knew I was gonna spring for the newest TiVo model to go along with it, because the other four (yeah, four!) TiVo boxes I have don't do High Def TV.

My brand-spankin new Tivo HD XL arrived yesterday in all of it's Bloop-bloop-bloop glory. The fact that it records in HD is just one of the big features.

Heather is in Heaven because now she can watch YouTube videos from the couch.

What was first on the Tivo Queue? "Candy Mountain."

If you're not a teenager, you just won't understand. Unicorns, dinosaurs, and kidney-stealing Sesame Street letters with legs. I recommend you empty a couple of glasses of alcohol before watching.

Plus, you can download your Netflix Queue movies directly to the Tivo and play them on the TV. Yeah baby!! Start popping the corn, I know where I'm gonna be this weekend! Wii Fit be damned, I wanna turn into a couch potato!

But the best thing about the new Tivo HD XL is the recording capactiy.
Here's a screen shot of the Tivo that's currently residing in my office:\

It says at "basic quality" you can record up to 79 hours of TV. You'd think that was a lot, but considering how many days (or even weeks) go by before I get a chance to watch TV, you'd be amazed at how fast that thing fills up, especially since we do "high quality" for most recordings.

But the new box has a slightly higher capacity.

Yeah, that says it will hold 1,367 hours (compared with 79). You know what that means...Scrubs Marathon!!

Oh crap. I've gotta work. The couch potato marathon will just have to wait for the weekend.

Spending Spree...Condensed Version

Yeah, yeah. I know. I've skipped all of the entries of my big spending spree. Here's the quick and dirty lowdown:

Part One: Bought Stephen King's Six Stories limited edition book on eBay. I wept with joy. But not until I put the book away, 'cause you just don't wanna get tears on a $1,000 book.

Part Two: New fancy schmantzy coffee table that lifts up and is ever so cool. I've used Pledge on it five times already. Considering my significant lack of domestic abilities (not to mention inclination), that's about a year's worth of dusting this week.

Part Three: New bed. Since my old headboard was a "Queen/Full" size but my mattress was a "Full," that meant my nightstand would stick out about six inches from the edge of my bed. Trust me when I tell you that I'm not the kind of girl looking for an extra six inches in my bed. 'Nuff said.

Part Four: Back to eBay for more books. I only need three more of Stephen King's books for my collection to be completely first editions. Naturally, they're the expensive ones. I find a guy who has 'Salem's Lot. He accepted my offer. Woo Hoo!! Unfortunately, the other two books that I'm missing are Night Shift (which runs about $800 for a first edition) and Carrie (King's first book, which is also in the $700 to $900 range). Way out of my league. I'll just have to be happy with my collection missing those two.

Part Five: ...Until I check the other auctions that the guy has. There it is, "Night Shift." He wanted $488 (which is a heck of a steal) and I offer $350. He takes it. Woo hoo!!!!

Part Six: And while I had been bidding on a beat-up copy of Carrie, someone came in and outbid me with only five minutes left. Well, I couldn't let THAT happen, so I upped my bid and emptied my wallet and now, I officially have a "Complete" collection of Stephen King first editions. Of course, I won't actually read these books. That's what paperbacks are for. Oh hush! You just have to humor me. I'm so happy!

Part Seven: Stay tuned...(pun definitely intended!)

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Spending Spree...Part Two

Another day, another dollar (or more).

Today's big acquisition was some furniture I picked up from a store in Canton. After redoing the living room, we decided the coffee table belonged in there, which meant it was time to buy a new one.

I knew exactly what I wanted. Unfortunately, "exactly what I wanted" just wasn't to be found around here. When I'd locate something I liked, they'd tell me it would take 6 to 8 weeks until it would arrive. Ummm, no. I'm part of the "I Want It NOW" generation, so that wasn't gonna happen.

Last weekend, I took Beth and her friend, Jordanne, to Canton so they could hit Jordanne's favorite store (a health-food store called The Raisin Rack) and Beth could hit her favorite store (Border's Books, of course). Meanwhile, Mom and I trekked our butts all over town. We went to cheapie stores like Big Lots Furniture, Value City Furniture, and nice places like Arhaus. Finally, we were down to the last place we could think of. It's an east coast furniture chain called Levin's Furniture. I'd seen their ads on TV and just presumed that they only sold junkie stuff.

We walked in and were blown away. The selection was amazing and everything seemed like decent quality. Their prices were cheaper than most of the "cheap" stores, too!

Within a minute of walking through the door, we had a salesman offering to help. That's always a good sign. I told him what I wanted and he smiled and said, "of course!"

There it was. The exact table I'd been searching for was sitting in the showroom. AND it was $100 less than the others I'd seen. Best of all, he would have it within a week.

Today was the arrival day, so Mom and I headed back to Canton. That, of course, meant we'd have to start out with lunch. Today we did the Quaker Steak And Lube restaurant. Everything was themed from a mechanic's point of view. Pretty cool.

Then, to Levin's. While their store is absolutely awesome, their loading deck is not. We've had snow and ice and as I'm walking down to ring the service bell, one leg goes forward and one leg goes back and splat! My fat ass is cracking the cement (or at least it felt like it). My knee is still throbbing. With all the money people pay for their furniture, you'd think they could find $20 to put down some salt, wouldn't you?

Fortunately, we had borrowed Dad's truck to bring the stuff home (did I mention that the coffee table isn't the only thing I bought? Oh, yeah, that'll be discussed in tomorrow's post) because the back of the truck was filled to the point where we had to tie stuff down so it wouldn't slide out. And the stupid salesman assured me that I'd have no trouble fitting it in my minivan. Idiot!

Heather helped me put the coffee table together. She was a tad irritated that I insisted on explaining the difference between a locking washer and a flat washer, but hey, she needs to know these things, so she was forced to listen.

The table is gorgeous. It matches the cherry wainscoting (which you can't see in this picture because of the couch) and cherry woodwork. See the little drawer down at the bottom? Perfect for our abundance of remote controls.

But the best part, and the thing that I REALLY wanted in the coffee table was the ability to use it as a laptop desk. The top lifts up and comes toward you as you sit on the couch.

How cool is that?

Oh, apparently Melody and Harmony like it, too.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Finally Back Home

So Many Blogalicious Moments...So Little Time

I'm behind on my blogging, thanks to work.

I'm not, however, behind on my eBay scavenging. I've been a busy little bidder.

It all started with the previously-mentioned redecorating of the living room. Since Heather volunteered to put back all of my Stephen King books into the bookcase, I printed out the chronological list of King titles. Yeah, I'm anal when it comes to my books. Paperbacks go in alphabetical order based on author's last name, then by title. King hardcover books (which takes up way more than one double bookcase) go in chronological order. Which isn't as easy as it sounds, thanks to the rather prolific spewing from Stevie-baby's typewriter. Some years he published two or even three books, so you can't just go by the copyright page.

I printed the list of all of his books and Heather diligently placed them in the proper order. After placing the Green Mile on the shelf, she saw that "Six Stories" was next on the list. Beside that title, I had drawn a little frown face because this was a signed, limited edition book I bought back in 1999 for $135 (original price was $85 the previous year), but after money got really tight, I chose to sell it in order to pay some bills. I made a nice profit because it ended up being sold to some guy in Italy for $600. But still...every time I looked at that bookcase, I knew it was missing something.

After Heather finished putting the books back in their proper home, she came to me and said that she wanted me to take all of the rest of her Christmas money (about $35, I think) and use it to bid on a copy of Six Stories that she had found on eBay.

I smiled at her and said it just wasn't possible to get it. First of all, the copy she found was $800, and secondly, that was just the bidding price, not the final price. It could go way up. She understood.

But, of course, that book just sat there digging at the foggy corner of my brain saying "c'mon, DiAnne! You've been working hard. You deserve this!"

The sensible side of my brain rightfully took one look at the auction online and said emphatically, "NO!!" I'm happy to say I did not buy that book.

I bought a different one instead. :)

Yeah, I kept checking auctions and all of a sudden one came up with a "Buy It Now" price of $550 with free shipping AND it had the special hard traycase that was a $200 special order after the book was published. Hell, that meant that the whole thing cost less than what I had sold it for a few years ago. Most of the time, the book with the traycase sells for about $1,000. I had to buy it, right? Hell yeah!

It arrived a few days ago. Every time I walk by my bookcase, I smile. It's complete, again.

I've taught my kids well. If you don't blow your money on cigarettes, booze, and gambling, you can buy $1,000 books at bargain prices. Woo hoo!!

Here's Beth peering ever so carefully at the signature page.

Her boyfriend, whom I not-so-affectionately call "Captain Hormone" took one look at the book and said, "Why'd you pay that much for a book you can't even read?" And Beth questions why I say that he's totally wrong for her. Hmmph!!