Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Great Choir Caper

Mission: To gain entrance to Andy's sold out choir concert.
Tactic: unknown

Andy and I discussed several possible tactics as we headed toward the concert hall. "You could sneak in with me," he suggested, "then you could climb the ladder and watch the concert from the ceiling." Tempting, though I have never been up there nor am I familiar with the hall's set up. "I think I will see if there are any tickets left unclaimed," I wussed out. We arrived at the concert hall two hours before the concert's start. I sat down to read my book and patiently waited for the box office to open.
Finally, the box office opened and I watched person after person leave in despair without ticket in hand. The rumor was true. There were no more tickets left. I gathered my courage approached the box office. "How may I help you?" asked a voice that was obviously tired of saying the same thing over and over again. "I was wondering how I would go about getting into the concert." "Umm," she stammered, "The concert is sold out." "Right, I'd heard that. I was just wondering if there was an usher I could bribe or something." "Oh," she said apparently taken back by my bluntness, "Well, the box office closes at 8 and at that time we leave the unclaimed tickets out for whoever. Now, I'm not telling you that you should take someone else's ticket, but that's what I would do if I were trying to get into the concert." I thanked her and went back to my hidden reading area to ponder my newly obtained information.
The lady had told me 8pm. Well, that obviously wouldn't work since the concert started at 7:30. I thought. I had to come up with something else. I paced the halls to the west of the concert hall seeing if there were any open doors. Then I tried the hallway to the east of the concert hall. I found the ladder that supposedly led to the ceiling and seriously thought about exploring it. I chickened out and went back to my undiscovered reading spot to regroup.
I was faced with a problem. I needed to get into a room that was guarded by six ushers. All entrances were locked save the ones that had guard dogs. However was I to get in?
I decided to wait it out. I waited until I heard applause from inside the concert hall and ventured out to see the status of the ushers.
With my back to the wall, I investigated the theater's perimeter. It seemed safe. I slowly crept toward the entrance and with a quick look around, I opened the heavy door. Stealthily I stole into the hallway. This was it. I needed only to go through one door to be in the concert hall. I reached for the door...DRAT! I was suddenly face to face with an usher. The following conversation commenced in hushed voices:
"Hello," the usher said. "Are you going in?"
"Yes," I replied. "I am going in."
"Do you have a ticket?"
I thought about that. Lie? "No," I said pointedly.
"So, you don't have a ticket?"
"Why didn't you buy one?"
"I tried. The concert was sold out. There were no more tickets left to buy."
"Right," he replied growing ever confused. "The concert IS sold out."
I smiled and did my best to look whatever look allows certain women get whatever they want. "Are you telling me there isn't a single vacant seat in there? Not one open seat?"
It must have worked. The man smiled a crooked smile and told me that there were, in fact, four vacant seats directly above us. He held the door for me as I ducked inside to claim one of the vacant seats. I was able to enjoy the entire concert and marveled and Andy's glorious voice (which, of course, I can pick out from the other 300 voices singing with him).
Mission accomplished.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Meet Morty

Andy and I have obtained a cat. His name is Mort Goldman (fondly after the hypochondriatic character from Family Guy) and he was graciously rescued by my friend Megan and her mom.
This little cat has been my joy for the five weeks that we have had him. He is silly and loves to play (at 4:30 am). He loves sitting in Andy's shoes and is fascinated by the laces. He has learning to climb and exercises his muscles regularly (most recently on our Christmas tree). But Mort now is not the Mort we brought home in November.
November 14th: April was scheduled to come into town for the NKOTB concert and I was scheduled to pick up a kitten. After months of bugging Andy about getting a cat, he finally caved when my friend, Megan, posted that she found a kitten that needed a home. How could he say no?
After work, I rushed home, grabbed andy, and we drove to Ogden to retrieve our new family member. It was, indeed, love at first sight. Megan's mom handed me the kitten and he immediately snuggled into my neck and began purring.
This was the cat for me. After an emotional goodbye, we brought the kitten home.
At this point, the cat remained nameless. He stayed in his crate, absolutely petrified by our enormous one bedroom apartment. To encourage him, I made a trail of food out of the crate. No good. I tried to lure him out by introducing a small moving object such as a shoelace. That sent him into a panic. Andy suggested that I give up and let him come out on his own terms. Ok. I went to set up the litter box. Hours passed and the cat remained frozen in his carrier. Nothing I did seemed to help ease his anxiety.
The time came to pick my sister up from the airport. I moved the cat carrier into the laundry room (which held his food, water and litter box).
When April and I walked into the apartment, I immediately raced to his carrier to see if he had gained courage in my absence. The crate was empty! Frantic, I began searching the apartment to see where he could be.
April and I looked behind the washer and dryer, in all of the cupboards, behind the dvds, behind the tv, behind and under the couch, behind the refigerator, under the bed, behind the dresser, in the closet, under the ottoman, behind the bookshelves, in the garbage, behind the toilet, in the shower, in the fireplace, up the fireplace...everywhere. I stripped the bed, pulled all of the laundry out and then rechecked all of those places. April helped me search and then went to check outside to see if he had escaped while we came in. No kitty was to be found.
I panicked and called Andy. I begged Andy to come home and help me look. 'Don't worry, Candace. He'll come out when he's ready.' You don't understand!! I can't find him anywhere! What if he is stuck somewhere?! What if he is outside in the cold?!!? What if he is starving?!?
Extremely distraught, I decided to take Andy's advice and just wait for him to come out.
Four hours passed with no sign of the cat. Andy finally came home and noticed that I was less than calm. Andy did a quick sweep through the apartment and told me that the cat was under the fridge. Not behind it, under it. That means that April and I moved the refrigerator to look behind it while he was still under it.
We moved the fridge and pulled the now smelly cat out.
He immediately snuggled and began purring. Turns out he didn't want to be left alone. He got scared in such a big place.
Happy ending

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Choose your own adventure: Candace's graceful flight

Read the story and choose your own adventure!

In her usual rush to catch the 4:30 train, Candace quickly punches her time card and logs out of her computer at 4:23. Without much thought other than making the train she runs to the stairs behind her office. If Candace decides to be lazy and take the elevator, please skip to PART V. If Candace takes the stairs continue to PART II.

Candace wishes her co-workers a pleasant weekend and walks through the door to the stairwell. She realizes that he had received a voicemail while she was at work. If Candace decides to wait until she reaches the train before checking her voicemail, skip to PART VI. If Candace absentmindedly grabs her phone to check her messages, continue to PART III.

Candace grabs her phone and looks to see who called her. This small, insignificant decision distracts Candace. This small, insignificant distraction causes Candace to miss the first step. As Candace misses the first step, she drops her phone (which plummets down the thirteen stair flight) and grabs the railing for dear life. She lets out a desperate cry as her shins make contact with the second stair with all of her body weight assisting the collision. If Candace is able to catch herself there skip to PART VII. If Candace loses her hold on the railing, continue to PART IV.

As Candace's shins endure an unbelievable amount of pressure due to the sandwiching of them by the stair and the rest of her body, her hand slips off of the hand rail and she tumbles down the thirteen stair flight, not unlike her phone. Candace is able to hit every stair and hand rail available to her and finally finds solace on the landing. She sits there stunned as she catches her breath, assesses the situation, and finds the courage to see if anything is broken. To find out what happens next, skip to PART VIII.

Candace wishes her co-workers a pleasant weekend and decides that she doesn't feel like taking the stairs. Candace takes the elevator, chastises herself for being so lazy, and safely walks to the train.

Candace leaves her phone where it is, understanding that she should pay attention the the stairs as she descends them. Candace safely makes it downstairs, to the train and proceeds to check her messages from the comfort, safety, and warmth of trax.

Candace is able to steady herself and make sure that neither tibia is broken. She chuckles to herself for being such a klutz and slowly walks down the four flights of stairs, picking her discarded phone on the way. Candace makes it safely to the train and retrieves her voicemail.

Candace doesn't think anything is broken as she can move her feet with only screaming pain. She tries to stand. Since nothing snapped upon standing, Candace figures her legs probably aren't broken. Candace decides to screw the following three flights of stairs and takes the elevator. After retrieving her phone, she hobbles out of the hospital in which she works and limps across the street. She finds refuge and comfort on trax and forgets about the voicemail. Who cares anyway. She calls her sister to regale the tale.