That’s All She Wrote

December 20, 2013 at 10:28 am (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , )

Truth.

I was told this morning that today is my last day with the firm because the whole damn place is shutting down.  Obviously not a total surprise, but man it still stinks, especially since I was counting on at least another week’s worth of cash.  Chances of me getting paid for the vacation time I was planning on using are now slim and with Christmas in five days, it’s all just peachy.

The good news is that I’ve had three solid interviews in the last two weeks and I have another phone interview scheduled for right after the new year.  All four places are waiting until basically the second week of January to do call backs so it’ll be a bit before I know anything, but I’m hopeful.  My resolution is to be working someplace full-time by the end of January – now I just need to make it happen!

Scott’s 30th birthday is tomorrow and we have a fun-filled weekend ahead of us, then Monday (after filing for unemployment, apparently) I will be leaving town to spend the week at my mom’s for Christmas.  There’s a lot to look forward to so I’m trying to stay positive but any good vibes that can be sent my way would also be much appreciated!

And since I’ll be out of town/it’s the holidays/I’m dealing with all this work crap, I’ll likely be taking a hiatus from the whole blogging thing for a bit.  Here’s hoping for a super wonderful and fantastic holiday and 2014, for all of us!

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Too Cool for School

December 19, 2013 at 10:48 am (Uncategorized) (, , )

It hits 34 degrees in Chicago and suddenly people start acting like it’s summer:

Really, dude?

Really, dude?

I guess this shows just how cold it’s been lately, when being above freezing is a cause for celebration!

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Holiday Train-ing

December 18, 2013 at 1:30 pm (Uncategorized) (, , )

My holiday is complete!  I have seen the elusive CTA Holiday Train, albeit from afar.

The excitement was palpable.

The excitement was clearly palpable.

The Holiday Train is an entire train decked out in lights and Christmas decorations, complete with holiday music blaring and even an elderly, typically frozen man dressed as Santa on a sleigh in the middle of the train (they actually remove an entire car and put the sleigh there so he braves the elements as he ho ho ho’s around town).  There are schedules you can follow to try to catch one and in all my time in Chicago, this is only the second time I’ve seen it (I obviously don’t follow those schedules too closely).  The train I was on last night came upon this sight and basically followed it for a while – at first, everyone was all smiling and excited as we busted out our phones for that perfect photo opportunity but as you can see from above, the allure quickly wore off for some.  I contemplated switching over to it just so I could enjoy the ride but it would’ve taken me slightly out of my way and the thing was absolutely packed so I opted to stay in my seat and check it out from there.

If you live in Chicago you know how fun this thing can be and if you don’t then it probably seems a silly thing to get excited over.  But if it makes my commute more festive and entertaining and doesn’t involve crazy people or bums then I’m all for it!

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Freebies!

December 16, 2013 at 2:54 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , )

I plan on enjoying the perks of working in the Willis Tower as much as I can, while I can.  For instance, today I got a free massage and manicure!

Why yes, I’ll treat myself!

Some fancy schmancy people from Elizabeth Arden have set themselves up in the lobby to provide complimentary services to the staff in the building all week long.  Never one to pass up something free, I took my lunch and enjoyed a nice back rub while listening to some holiday music.  Then I got my nails filed and painted, which is something I VERY rarely have done.  They look so nice, even if it is strange to see nail polish on myself.

Supposedly we all get 20% off any purchases made as well and I’m sure they’re trying to lure everyone in with the freebies in order to sell us tons of make-up, perfume, hair and skin products.  But wait!  If you buy so much you get a super tacky plastic bag for free!  Yeah sorry Ms. Arden but that’s not going to work on me.  I came for the free goods and left with nothing else.  I’m about to be unemployed, can you blame me?

Fingers (gingerly) crossed that I can keep my nails from chipping at least until I get home!

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Ode to the Job Search (to the tune of Let it Snow)

December 13, 2013 at 11:41 am (Uncategorized) (, , , )

Oh, the jobs outside are frightful

and not working would be so delightful,

but since I need to make some money

I wish someone would hire me, hire me, hire me!

Hopefully my interviews won’t show signs of stopping

though the chances of being hired this time of year are dropping,

and because I can’t live for free

someone really should hire me, hire me, hire me!

When I finally find the job that’s right

hopefully I won’t dread waking up each day,

oh how I will hug my paycheck tight

and hopefully they’ll let me stay!

My current job is slowly dying

and my tears are slowly drying,

but since my landlord won’t leave me be

someone better hire me, hire me, hire me!

My money will keep me warm!

My money will keep me warm!

I’ll try to quit my crying

and all of the interview vying,

but from an uncertain future I wish to be free

so please let someone hire me, hire me, hire me!

Hire me!  Hire me!  Hire me!

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Technophobia

December 12, 2013 at 11:43 am (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , )

In the last two weeks, I have acquired a brand new iPhone and a brand new Nook.  Now, I had a smartphone before and I also even possessed a Nook but both were leagues behind what I currently own.  My smartphone was smart but this iPhone could probably cook a meal for itself and then find the best way to clean up and dispose of the leftovers, while booking a flight across the country and answering questions regarding corn consumption in farm animals.  As for the Nook, the first one I had was the first generation and didn’t come equipped with a touch screen or backlight.  Both Nooks have been hand-me-downs from a particularly generous aunt of mine but this new one takes e-reading to a whole new level.  Between these new acquisitions and the laptop I already had, I’m beginning to feel a little overwhelmed.  What if it all decides to come together to ruin run my life?

One day the machines will rule us all!

Seriously, it wouldn’t be hard.  My iPhone knows my schedule, the names and contact information to all those most important to me, all inquiries I’ve made relating to things I may or may not be too embarrassed to admit to here and even my exact GPS coordinates.  The Nook knows what I’m reading and exactly how slow I’m reading it while my Macbook knows just about everything else, as well as having access to every family and vacation photo I’ve ever taken.  These three devices basically rule my world and I’m not exactly sure how I feel about that.  Sure, they’re all extremely convenient and handy and I’ll be the first to admit that carrying my Nook is a lot simpler than carrying my current book, which is The Count of Monte Cristo and clocks in at just under 1300 pages.  It’s also been really nice to watch Netflix on my phone while at the gym instead of trying not to stare at the jiggling ass of the person in front of me.  So yes, I’m getting spoiled but I still don’t know what to make of it.  I actually have a paperback copy of the book at home because I genuinely like reading from an actual book, so I’m still not sure I’m doing the whole Nook thing right.  Where’s the fine line between being far too reliant on technology and being a Luddite?  The world may never know.

Now if I could just get one of these contraptions to take care of mundane tasks like waiting on hold to talk to the insurance company, I’d be all set.  I’m currently at one hour and thirteen minutes – Blue Cross Blue Shield, my technology and I are coming for you!

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BRR!

December 10, 2013 at 8:10 am (Uncategorized) (, , , , )

When it’s this cold out, I think everyone should get the day off to stay at home in their pajamas and drink hot chocolate while watching Christmas movies.  And if that’s not possible, I think our pets should be forced to do housecleaning while we’re away at work so we’re not so jealous of their warm little furry selves that we contemplate spraying them with water bottles.  Or am I the only one that does that?

The wind chill was -10 this morning when I made my way to work.  If it’s this bad in early December, I shudder (literally) at the thought of what it will be like once February rolls around.  How did our ancestors survive this biting cold weather without things like central heat and leg warmers?  Oh that’s right, they would cut up dead animals and use their skins for protection.  I’ve never been much on real fur but perhaps I should find a buffalo or deer or something and dispose of its innards so that I may crawl inside.

Agreed.

I think the cold does weird things do people’s brains.

What’s also frustrating is figuring out how to dress.  I have two interviews this week (and I am certainly NOT complaining about that) but it’s kind of awkward to show up for such a meeting resembling the abdominal snowman.  I can’t even wear my regular winter boots (not that it really matters because they leak so much my toes freeze anyway) because wearing snow shoes doesn’t exactly go well with business casual clothing.  What’s a girl to do?  That’s right, freeze.  Hopefully the frostbite setting in on my cheeks will give them a lovely, rosy glow that will make me impossible not to hire!

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New Week, New Outlook

December 9, 2013 at 11:10 am (Uncategorized) (, )

And things are looking up!

I was able to get a new phone for free on Friday because the little water sensor thingies weren’t triggered, despite fully being submerged in a pee-filled toilet.  I’m going to go ahead and chalk that miracle up to my ninja like reflexes that allowed me to grab it so fast that no incriminating damage was done.  So – score one for me and a free new phone!

ALSO, I have not one but TWO interviews this week!  Boy, it sure would be nice to score a new job and never have to stand in line for unemployment.  Fingers, toes and eyes are crossed!

 

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It’s a Friday and I Can Cry if I Want To

December 6, 2013 at 10:51 am (Uncategorized) (, , , , )

Well, it’s finally happened.  The firm I work for officially told me that we’re closing at the end of the year.

I’ve been expecting this for a little while and have begun a job search but there’s a difference between suspecting and knowing for certain.  They’re going to try to keep me on through the end of the month but there’s no guarantee even of that.  The good thing is that my boss is being very lenient with my schedule and with me taking time off for interviews.  Also, I can collect unemployment if need be though I’m really hoping it doesn’t come down to that.  The bad news is I’m losing my super sweet corner office with a view and well, my job.  I’ve never been in this kind of situation before and it’s pretty weird.  It also obviously sucks.

It helped I had a holiday office party at the Art Institute to go to with a friend last night and it gave me hope that maybe next year I’ll be working at a place that has holiday parties instead of layoffs.  There was good food and an open bar, which I took advantage of.

Of course I did.

Unfortunately, I took advantage too much and in my super graceful state last evening, I knocked my brand new iPhone into the toilet.  I’ll be buying a new one later today.  I have insurance and if I had done this a week ago my plan would’ve paid for a new phone but apparently when I renewed my contract, the new insurance comes with a $150 deductible.  I wasn’t happy about that but figured since I had never needed it before it wouldn’t be a big deal.  Well I’m glad I have it now but I’m still not happy about shelling out more cash for a phone I just bought.  It’s an expensive lesson to learn and from now on my cell phone will be banned from the bathroom.  But, I’ve got to have a phone especially since I’m now searching for a new job.

When it rains it pours.  At least it’s Friday!

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Christmas Like it’s 1999

December 5, 2013 at 2:25 pm (Uncategorized) (, )

As found on my walk home last night:

Let's Go Crazy!

Let’s Go Crazy!

I once dressed as Prince during a Rock ‘n Roll theme party we had in college.  I have to admit, it was pretty convincing and I looked super bad ass, much like this display.  These decorations brought a smile to my face and I hope they do the same to yours!

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