February 18, 2007

 can you wear panties right off the rack?

i'm in portland and the airline lost my luggage.

i initially had a good attitude about this, having heard the airline rep say that most baggage is found and delivered within 24 hours. in fact, chances were good, she said, that my bag would be on the next flight from chicago (where it was last scanned) and would be waiting for me at the hotel when i woke up.

so with that small sense of peace, my co-worker and i checked in to the hotel and then immediately headed out for a quick spin around our downtown neighborhood. we went to the river, just three blocks away. it was a beautiful day. i didn't even miss my coat, which i had smartly packed away in my suitcase. (i always do that at the airline check-in counter... take off my coat and stuff it in my bag so that i don't have to deal with it on the airplane. perhaps i'll think twice about that in the future.)

we visited voodoo doughnut, which -terrifyingly- is one block from our hotel. i'm going to need to force myself to stay away from there. we decided to top it off with a proper dinner, so we stopped at a food cart on the street and had some thai food. it was actually astoundingly delicious. we got a MOUND of food for $5 each. and "lady thai" was so smiley and sweet.

we headed back to the hotel to eat (because, frankly, the sun was starting to set and my good fortune of having warm weather was quickly ending). my co-worker loaned me one of his wool sweaters to help me warm up, and we pored over the map the hotel had given us (my personal map had -duh- been packed into my missing suitcase) and considered where to go next.

while eating, though, we suddenly realized how incredibly tired we both were. we had woken up at 3am to catch our flight, and neither of us had been able to sleep on the plane (even though we had been blessed with comfy first-class seats). our travels were finally catching up with us. the co-worker actually had a conference session the next day (from 9am-5pm) so he decided to hit the sack early -- though by local time it wasn't even 6pm yet. i agreed that an early evening in would be good, so i said goodnight to him and headed back to my room.

i callled the front desk and asked for a toothbrush and toothpaste. i found a wireless connection and surfed around a bit, checking out online maps of the area i was in. i started thinking more and more about "what if"... what if my luggage didn't arrive overnight? what was i going to wear tomorrow? i was meeting an old roommate of mine for a tour of the city the next day... i hadn't seen him in years, and i didn't want to impress him with my stinky clothes. also, i don't like to sleep nude, and i certainly didn't want to go to bed in the clothes i'd been travelling in. hrm...

so, spur-of-the-moment, i decided to go for a walk and see if i could find a clothing store. from my googling, i knew there was a shopping center called "pioneer place"... it would be a long walk, but i was driven by my desire for clean clothes. i headed out (with the wool sweater for warmth) and got all of 4 blocks before discovering a ross. hallelujah!

i walked out an hour later with a warm, weather-resistant jacket, a shirt, two pairs of underwear, a dress, and some cheap workout clothes that i could sleep in. $70. i got back to the hotel, got ready for bed, and collapsed without ever checking to see if my room gets free HBO.

i didn't sleep well, though. i kept waking up to see if there was a "message waiting" light on my phone, letting me know my bag had arrived from the airport. suffice to say, even when i got out of bed at 6:30am the light was not lit. i called the front desk to make sure my bag wasn't down there. it wasn't. i called the airline again; they still hadn't found my luggage. i sighed, and clad in my new workout clothes, i went down for the free hotel breakfast. on the way, i asked about the nearest drug store. i now know the location, and as soon as i post this i'm going to walk there to buy some deodorant, makeup, and a few other things i can't live without.

i'm very glad my part of the conference does not begin until monday. (well, there's an opening reception tonight. for which i have a dress.) so i have basically another full day to figure things out. i think there's a coin laundry of the second floor of the hotel... at the very least i can keep washing the dress, my travel clothes, my dress, the travel clothes, each day until my suitcase arrives.

the question about the panties bothers me, though. i try not to wear plain ol' clothes right off the rack -- i like to wash them first to get the ick off from countless tryers-on before i wear them myself. i can live without that step in this instance, but the underwear is another thing. i'm pretty sure no one has tried them on prior to me buying them, but they've been handled by lord-knows-how-many people before i purchased them. i don't have time to wash them before wearing them today. for me, this might be the most difficult part of this whole adventure.

Posted by xta at 10:32 AM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

February 15, 2007

 or don't.


the spam still manages to get through. comments are off... FOREVER. or at least until i have another burst of energy to direct towards figuring it out.

am busy. TOO busy. stressed-out-like-nothing-in-recent-memory busy. work is nuts. going on a business trip to portland on saturday. my birthday is coming up and people want to know what are you doing?. i don't know! i'm too busy to figure it out!

the neurologist's office has fucked up the results of my blood test AGAIN. i have now been waiting ONE WHOLE MONTH for the results of a test that is supposed to determine whether i get immediately referred to a stroke speciliast. the immediacy now seems laughable. the doctor has apologized, and sounds frustrated himself. he has also promised a referral to the stroke specialist anyway, so that SHE can run the mysteriously difficult test for herself. plus some other diagnostic tests, too, i understand.

but my neurologist WILL NOT CALL ME BACK. i've phoned, emailed and *faxed* him, asking about how to get this referral appointment made. i'm leaving town saturday; it would be nice to have this scheduled before i go.


i had a nightmare last night about having another TIA. in my dream, the TIA came while i was on the air at work. it was not a nice dream. fucking frightening, in fact. i stuttered into the mic, and had that horrible feeling of knowing something is wrong in my brain, but not being able to communicate that fact to anyone. in the dream i had the presence of mind to shut the mic off before collapsing to the floor.

the gym is my biggest stress-reliever right now. i cannot believe how much i love going to the gym. to say i'm surprised by my addiction is an understatement. (i've got a number of free 14-day passes, if you're a woman and you're interested in checking it out for yourself.) i've lost 4 pounds since joining at the end of january.

also, my boyfriend is a good stress-reliever. he's a sweet, sweet boy and i love him very much. we cooked a nice valentine dinner together last night --making up a recipe as we went-- and it turned out really well. plus, the chocolate bon-bons for dessert were awesome.

Posted by xta at 3:47 PM | TrackBack

February 10, 2007

 i laughed out loud


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February 9, 2007

 we'll miss you, al

a co-worker of mine died yesterday. i spent most of the day in shock. all of us did. al had been with the station for more than a quarter-century. his program was beloved by people all over the world. to say he will be missed is a gross understatement.

i built a memorial page to him on the station's website. this is my job, but it's actually a privilege -- i've had the honor of reading hundreds of loving comments from his friends and listeners, and posting them online. these comments are making me feel good. he made such a huge impact on so many people's lives... his enthusiasm, dedication and his voice. that voice, i'll never forget.

the raleigh paper wrote an article on him today. memorial services are monday.

Posted by xta at 1:48 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

February 7, 2007

 double the fun

there are two traffic circles in the area. the one in my neighborhood, which has enjoyed countless decorative displays over the years, and a relatively new one in the neighborhood just to the south. they are rarely decorated at the same time, so what's going on right now seems special.

this is what's happening in my traffic circle right now:


from a distance this hardly seems like anything at all. the pole from the new year's celebration is still in the middle, but this new thing has been strung around it.

i had to get really close to see that it's some sort of global warming message. those are flimsy swimsuits strung on the line with the signs.

then there's the traffic circle in the adjacent neighborhood, which has gone totally abstract:


here's a closeup shot. i have no idea what it means. it's nutso, but that's perfectly ok. at least it slows people down as they approach the intersection.

Posted by xta at 9:57 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

February 5, 2007

 she has my full support

ok, a shoe post is coming shortly (thanks, in no small part, to marianne, who introduced me to this new site).

but first, bras.

do you remember this? my post on the pennyrich bra patch? i got an email today from a reporter at the N&O, telling me that the owner --sally-- is apparently trying to sell her business and retire... a revelation that shocked the reporter (who is also a customer) into writing an article about sally and her store.

the reporter contacted me after discovering my blog post about the bra patch; i allowed her to interview me immediately. we talked about our mutual admiration sally, a woman who could literally size you up in 10 seconds and put you in the best-fitting bra you could have ever imagined. she is more than a saleslday... she has a gift. her working life --or at least 36 years of it-- has been spent getting women into the proper bra. she's amazing.

and now she's leaving the biz. which i find very sad.

so if you need a bra, hurry on over there. who knows when she'll get a buyer.

(the N&O article will probably run on friday.)

Posted by xta at 2:55 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

February 4, 2007

 ham and jam and spamalot


ok, i need your help.

i think i'm beginning to understand this new spam-catching feature... 99.5% of the junk appears to be dealt with swiftly and appropriately, but i need to make sure that valid comments aren't getting junked as well.

so, leave a comment, if you would. are you getting a "wait for approval" message? does your comment look at all like it could be spam? (are you mentioning viagra, for instance?)

one day this will all be sorted out and we can go back to our regular diet of shoe blogging...

Posted by xta at 1:18 AM | Comments (19) | TrackBack