Thursday, March 29, 2012

Enough So We Never Do Anything Anymore

As I'm sure you've probably all heard, the MegaMillions is up to close to a half a billion dollars. Which, in my mind, might as well be a bajillion. It's crazy. And though I know, and it's been hammered into all of our heads, that it's likely a snowball's chance in hell that we'll win, I just thought I should itemize a list of expenditures now.

I'm not talking about things like paying off debt, buying a house, a new car, etc. That stuff will of course be taken care of first. If you win $476,000,000, you could pretty much live on interest alone. Which means you'd have lots of leftover money for fun things. And by "you," I of course mean "Sarah."

1. Interstate Skybucket System.

Oh, I'd much rather take a skybucket almost anywhere I needed to go. There would be stops, different stations. Think of it as a new wave of public transportation. Only by "public," I mean "Sarah."

2. Hire a roving band of Mariachi for a day.

Just think about how much more festive everything would be!

3. Buy one of those double decker tour busses.

And then! I would create my OWN tour. There could be the Tour of Bad Decisions, in which we drive past my ex's house and I point out the hideous things I went through. Heckling would be encouraged, though I would put the kibosh on vandalism. I'm not bitter or anything. Or there could be the Barhopping Tour of the South Bay. Think of how much more fun a pub crawl would be if you had the bus!

4. Eliminate Huell Howser.

Wow, that would be AMAYZING!!!

5. Hire Robert Palmer dancers to follow me around for a day.

Not to coincide with Mariachi Day, naturally.

6. Follow Tom Jones around on tour.

I'm a band-aid. We inspire the music, we ARE the music. It's all happening!

7. Buy an island across from the one Tom Cruise owns. Position cannons.

Who wants to play pirate? Arrrrgh!

8. Rent Disneyland for a day.

I could invite almost everyone I know, and still it would be the least crowded day ever. And I bet they would let me ride Big Thunder twice or more in a row! And churros for all!

9. Create an enormous Bail fund.

Enough said.

10. Call Mitt Romney. Laugh at his financial woes. Ask if his toilet is still running. And if he has Prince Albert in the can.

11. Carry a glass of red wine with me at all times. Swirl it around and act important.

12. Create an evil weather machine.

13. Roll around in money at least once a day. Never tell anyone it's actually just Monopoly money, because real money is filthy.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

My Zombpocalypse Soundtrack

Just a silly meme, because it's spring:

1. My theme for the Zombie Apocalypse is: Cupid, by Amy Winehouse.

(You know, that just figures. I'd want something badass, and this would be playing in repeat in my scumbag brain.)

2. First Zombie Kill Song: Love the Way You Lie, Eminem ft. Rihanna.

(Well now this is getting awkward.)

3. Getting Chased by a Horde: B.O.B. by Outkast.

(This is more like it. I really hope I can Parkour.)

4. When I'm Forced to Kill My Loved One: All For You by Sister Hazel.

(Kinky. I like it.)

5. When I Find My New Love Interest: Amazing Grace by the Dropkick Murphies.

(Well okay then!)

6. When I Make My Final Stand: Everybody Get Dangerous by Weezer.

(Yes. And more Yes.)

7. When I Think I Made It Through: Cupid, by Sam Cooke.

(Gah. It's like bookends.)

8. When I Discover A Bite Mark: Joy To The World, Three Dog Night.

(It's a good ending song, but at this point in the film I groan. Why end it that way? Why?? Was it because I like the song Cupid a little too much? Because I can change.)

Monday, March 12, 2012

United Airlines and the Quest for Common Sense

Oh, we had such high hopes for our weekend in Pittsburgh. Such. High. Hopes.

I want to begin this by saying that Erin's wedding was lovely, and so much fun, and once we were IN Pennsylvania all was good. But the trip out there was...

Well, first, my husband and I had our roommate drop us off at the airport at 4:45am or so. For a 6:45am flight. We didn't check a bag, and we were at one of the smaller airports, so security was a breeze (and I really hope the guard likes the way my nekkid skeleton looks. He did give me a thumbs up, so here's hoping, right?). In fact, we were there before TSA set up the security lines!

We finally get to board our plane at 6:30am. Only 15 minutes before the scheduled departure time. We had a little bit of a buffer, though, and we were still flying United from Chicago to Pittsburgh, so we felt...uneasy yet reassured. However, once we were ON the plane, we just sat on the runway. And sat. And sat. Turns out, we were just one of many waiting to take off. We ended up lifting off around 7:20am, and because of "weather complications" were told we would be arriving about 40 minutes late.

We ended up getting into Chicago an hour late. And yes, we had totally missed our connection. But hallelujah, the United people were going to get us onto the next plane for Pittsburgh! Only on standby. Because, you know, it's not their fault or anything that we were late. And the next flights were full! So an entire plane full of connecting passengers made haste to the customer service desk, where many of us spent the time in line (and boy did we spend some time in line!) on our cell phones with United. While my husband was on hold, the ladies in front of us were able to get through and get their flight reserved. I got through and was told we had two spots waiting for us on the 1:55 flight, but we had to hurry.

We hauled ass through the terminal, where they had just shut the doors. There was nothing they could do, and they suggested that we go back to customer service. Bonus: the lady who gave us two spots on the 1:55 flight removed our names from standby, so we now had no flight at all.

So, back to customer service we went. We had been in line for around 20 minutes and moved up a whole ten feet when a customer behind us slipped on a spilled milkshake. The other customers helped him up and started to get him cleaned up while I flagged down a United associate. "This man just slipped and fell in your line!" I said. "Okay." said the helpful employee, who then proceeded to do nothing. While nothing was being done for the injured older gentleman, my fellow passengers and myself tossed paper towels over the spill and the fallen gentleman then moved the line barriers over so no one else would slip as he did.

So, in a case like this, what does United do? Why, they send the escalation manager over to yell at the injured man for moving the line barriers, of course! Because why ask if he was okay or needed medical attention?

I glared at the manager. "I cannot BELIEVE," I growled, "that you do not possess the wherewithal to ask if the gentleman who slipped on a spill in YOUR line that YOU could not be bothered to clean up is okay. Don't you think he may need medical attention?"

The manager slimed into action. "But of course, " he said, suddenly British. "Please, sir, come with me and let's get your medical needs attended to."

The gentleman flushed. "I'm not leaving until I figure out my flight!" He said. "I need to get to Pittsburgh!"

The manager was finally able to convince the gentleman to go with him, but I think it speaks volumes about their customer service that he would rather wait in a ridiculous line clutching his right arm than risk losing his spot.

My husband returned to the line, having had a chat with customer service over the phone again. This time, they were able to get us to Pittsburgh, but our choices were to either fly through Newark, adding another connection and hours onto our travel, or they could get us directly to Pittsburgh the next day. However, they would NOT pay for a hotel, because it was not their fault that we missed our connection. I guess we should have taken jet packs and bailed when it was apparent that we would miss our original connection. You know, because people who are strapped into a jet with no control over when and where it lands are obviously at fault.

Since we were almost to the front of the line, we decided to have our new tickets printed out. The associate at the front of the desk looked at us. "How were you planning on getting to Newark?" She asked.

"We were hoping you'd get us there," I said.

"Well, first you'd need to have a ticket from Chicago to Newark." She explained slowly, chomping on gum.

"You mean they booked our new connection, but didn't connect us to it?" I said.

"Do you want to go from Chicago to Newark?" She asked.

I seethed. "Not really, but I do need to get to Pittsburgh by tonight. Tomorrow is not an option."

They just stared blankly for a second. Then printed my tickets. Then there was a furrowed brow.

"We can find your tickets, but not your husband's." They said. So there was another wait while we waited for them to find the missing tickets. We made a decision that if we couldn't get on this connection, they would be refunding (THEY WOULD BE REFUNDING!!!) our cost for this leg of the trip, we would rent a car, and drive the 6 hours to Pittsburgh.

At this point, we didn't have time to eat. We got to the gate and made our connection into Newark. I would say "thankfully" but I wouldn't mean it.

I would like to take this moment, now, to point out that the butthole of civilization can be found in Newark. There were so many awful people. It really explains everything you may have questioned about the Jersey Shore gang.

We looked for our gate, but we couldn't find it. We asked a lady, and she then let us in on the secret: in order to FIND gate A26, we'd have to be bussed. Through the Newark airport. Once we got off the bus, we went up a series of staircases to another terminal, identical to the one we had been at, and also labeled "A".

We found some seats and waited. Our plane was due to take off at 8:28pm. We waited. and Waited. and Waited some more. Some fine fellow in a sleeveless grey tank top yelled at a flight attendant. I wept into my cheddar whales.

The plane didn't end up taking off until 9:45pm. And do you know why? Because they couldn't find the pilot. Which they announced over the loudspeaker. Couldn't. Find. The. Pilot.

The plane landed around midnight in Pittsburgh. We got in our rental car, exhausted, a full 7 and a half hours after we were supposed to have landed. We entirely missed my good friend's rehearsal dinner.

And the kicker is, at every opportunity, they thanked us for choosing United, because "we KNOW you have other choices in air travel."

Yes, United, we know we have other choices. And from now on, we will choose to use those other choices. Because here are some facts that were brought to our attention by fellow passengers:

1. The small airport we chose has a no-fly zone from 11pm to 7am. Knowing this, why would they then schedule a flight at 6:45am, knowing full well that we wouldn't be taking off until after 7am, once we had waited for all the other planes that were also stuck until 7?

2. And then, knowing all of the above, United STILL scheduled our connection for a time when they knew we wouldn't make it. But, our delay was our own fault. Or so we were told.

They basically set us up for failure. And yes, knowing this, next time we could choose a later flight with a different connection, or a nonstop flight. But the fact is, we won't be choosing United again. Their scheduling sucks, their planes are like flying in a Greyhound bus, their employees are rude or poorly trained to handle customer complaints or problems or issues or WHATEVER, and the fact that I had to yell at the manager for not medically assisting a paying passenger who had slipped in their customer service kiosk? Priceless.

Keep it Classy, United.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Come Fly With Me, Let's Fly, Let's Fly Away!

I'm going on a journey to a far away land. Leaving my sunny, 77 degree weather with clear views of Catalina and my roommate to go to scenic, COLD AS HELL Pittsburgh. Who wouldn't want a piece of this, amirightladies??

Don't get me wrong, I'm excited to go. This is the first time I'll be in the land of Erin, a dear friend of mine that I met online over 10 years ago and who I met for the first time last November, for my wedding. Also, Erin is getting married! So yay for weddings, and yay especially for the wedding of one of my nearest and dearest.

However. I hate to fly. I really, really hate it. I'm not a terrified flyer or anything. I used to fly fairly frequently when I was fulfilling my role as a one woman USO. I'd fly out to wherever the dude was stationed for a visit. I had, under my bathroom sink, a travel bag filled with duplicate products so that I wouldn't have to disrupt mine at home. Packing was easy, I knew the ins and outs of LAX, and I took great pains to take non stop flights.

What I hate the most about flying, I'm afraid, is security. It's never been a comfortable procedure (and rightly so), but I haven't flown since the new scanners and pat down procedures were implemented, and I am anxious. I haven't slept well for the past three nights knowing there is a possibility that I will be felt up by an airport employee, and I don't feel great about that. To say that I'm not touchy-feely is an understatement of epic proportion. I'm not really great with hugging people I know. And then I start to get all paranoid that because I'm worried about it, my behavior will trigger something and I'll be escorted into a back room. I can pretty much guarantee that if that does happen, you will see me on the news.
And I will look something like this.

I guess I'd better shower and shave my legs so I look and smell pretty for the nice agents. But before I go, here's some random useless info about yours truly!

A. Age: 28. I have become alarmingly forgetful when it comes to my own age, and that of those around me. I would say it's because it doesn't matter that much, but probably it's because I'm old now.

B. Bed size: Queen. I would love a California King someday, but until we win the lottery, that's not likely.

C. Chore that you hate: Dishes. I hate those mother effers so much.

D. Dogs: Are cool, if they belong to someone else. I'm a cat person, plus I am allergic to our Canine friends.

E. Essential start to your day: Sadly, Facebook. Gah, I've become a statistic.

F. Favorite color: Green! I look terrible in it, but I love a nice green.

G. Gold or Silver: Silver/White Gold. I just don't love the look of yellow gold on me.

H. Height: It depends on who's measuring. DMV says I'm 5'6" and a half. This chiropractor I went to once said I was 5'5", but looking back, I'm pretty sure they were just trying to sell me services.

I. Instruments you play: Cowbell. Oh, and I went to a drum circle not too long ago and now I'm pretty sure I'm the next Travis Barker.

J. Job title: Currently I am one of the Funemployed. Trying to find work is hard. That is why I must drum.

K. Kids: Not while I'm unemployed, but I would love to have a few one day.

L. Live: Gorgeous Southern California!

M. Mother’s name: Mom. Duh.

N. Nicknames: Rah, or any take on that. Sarahface. Wifey. Piehole.

O. Overnight hospital stays: Hmm. I think maybe never, except when I was born. Then again, I don't remember everything about my head injury from my bike accident, so I'd have to ask my mom.

P. Pet peeves: People who smack their lips when they chew, or to make a point about something tasting good. People who chew with their mouths open. Anything Rachael Ray says (Yum-O! EVOO! Smashed Potatoes! IS THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE NOT GOOD ENOUGH FOR YOU, RACHAEL???!) I'm also hard of hearing, so I can't stand it when people don't repeat themselves for me. They'll mumble something, and I'll say, "I'm sorry?" and they'll either say "nevermind" or they'll just repeat one word. "The MOVIE." Seriously, dipwad, what about the movie?

Q. Quote from a movie: "It's all happening!"

R. Right- or left-handed: Right handed. Though like a true chubster, I can feed myself left handed if need be.

S. Siblings: God, there are so many of us...

T. Tattoos & Piercings: Ha! Okay, let's start with piercings: one, a curved barbell through my right eyebrow. Now for tattoos:

1. A tiny lavender cancer support ribbon on my left ankle.

2. A celtic trinity on my lower back, right side.
3. A Butterfly on my right shoulder, front.
4. A maiden-mother-crone symbol on my right wrist
5. A pair of dice on my left wrist.
6. An apple with a pencil stabbed through it on my right outer shoulder.
7. A Jack Skellington cupcake on my inner right ankle.
8. Cherry blossoms that cascade over my left shoulder
9. A tiny ice cream cone with a 13 in it that I got with my Aunt for 13 bucks on Friday the 13th.

U. Underwear: Strange category. I think everyone should wear it. I am pro-skivvy.

V. Vegetable(s) you hate: Okra. Yellow squash. Everything else is cool, though, but I am allergic to Jalapeno and Eggplant.

W. What makes you run late: Procrastination. I'll elaborate later.

X. X-Rays you’ve had: Tons and tons! Wrists, ankles, feet, lungs...

Y. Yummy food that you make: I hate to toot my own horn, but toot toot bitches! I rule in the kitchen. Anything I make is good.

Z. Zoo animal: Big cats! Tigers, Panthers, Lions. Kitty kitty kitty kitty!