Thursday, April 27, 2006

Taking a Much Needed Break: T-3 Days Until Relocation

Taking a late night break from packing.

We've got about 100 boxes of stuff stacked up all over this 1200 sq. ft. apartment. Plenty of furniture packed away in the sun room for a charitable organization to take away on Friday.

The movers come tomorrow to pick up the boxes and the small amount of furniture that we'll take with us to Chicago.

This place looks very white and has quite an echo.

I'm ambivalent about the next few surreal days, either. Seeing a cardiologist, not really having a stable Internet connection, getting stuff to people, retrieving stuff, attending a memorial service for the deceased mother of a couple friends, going to a bachelor party then heading cross country in a car.

A good day will arrive when we reach a Chicago suburban hotel for a couple weeks than a great day will occur when we finally get into an apartment in Chicago that we hope to inhabit for awhile.

Then when I get a job. . ..

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Cats are Scared of a House Getting Re-Sided: T-4 Days Until Relocation

There's a lot of stuff going on and hardly enough time to do it.

The movers come tomorrow. We still have quite a bit to pack.

Then the Mass Coalition of the Homeless comes to pick up a bunch of furniture and stuff that no one wanted to buy.

I'm pretty tired.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

It Comes Closer: T-6 Days Until Relocation

GOING BACK ON MY WORD AND DEALS MADE

I've decided to stick with Magic and not sell my cards. . .except for the ones I already sold to someone. I don't regret selling them, though.

As for not fulfilling a couple e-mail deals I made with a couple people, I regret not being able to fulfill those.

For now, though, I won't play or construct any decks. I will just catalog and price them. While doing so over the last couple days to market them, I refreshed my memory about some cards and saw some cool tricks that other ones could do.

Very possibly, I simply got frustrated by not having familiarity with my cards, also not having fun playing the same old decks that I had put together and not really having the time or resource to put together other interesting decks. I just kept working on the old decks. . .which got boring after awhile, I guess.

IN OTHER NEWS

I've picked my groom's party. If you want to know who I've picked, you'll have to get in touch with me personally. This Blog is not privy to that particular information.

THE LAST HURRAH

Last night, went out for Ethiopian food at Addis Red Sea in the South End and The Last Hurrah in a hotel downtown next to the Common.

It felt very much like rehearsal for all the wedding stuff that will happen in a little more than year, all the loud noise, not getting to talk much with the fiancee and not really having any indepth, good conversations with people.

I hope the rest of my relations with people happen like this after I get married.

The fiancee and some of the other people in the roving party last night surprised me with gifts and having the wait staff sing happy birthday accompanied by African drums. Fun stuff, even though another friend almost spoiled the whole surprise. Bad friend, bad. . . (BTW, when do you want me to come over tomorrow?).

I still enjoyed the night and all the brief conversations I had with people, though.

PACKING, PACKING, PACKING. . .

I think I packed a little yesterday, but I'm totally sure. The day went by in a little bit of a blur. Maybe that happened because the fiancee and I got up kind of late.

Oh right. . .yesterday was mostly about getting rid of my credit card debt and addressing my financial errands and last paycheck until I find my next job.

Got up at a better time this morning. Did some errands done that I should've done months ago, like packing up Holiday gifts to people (and yes, holiday. . .one of the friends is Jewish).

Also had to do some troubleshooting with Microsoft Office. Something about one of the recent update patches screwing around with the compatibility of Office and my HP hardware drivers. Dummies dumping this work on me. . ..

Typed up an outline for my BA project with a couple additions to take into account my thinking over the last couple days. Reminds me. . .I really need to call my sponsor to let them know that I only tried to contact the head of advising to figure out a logistical issue, not any real crisis. . .even if I had a small doubt crisis going on at the time. I didn't want them to know about it. . ..

But after all the errands and chores, I did some amount of packing. Two or three boxes, pretty good compared to my one or two boxes a day in the past. Need to get a real move on during the next couple days, though. "D-Day" comes soon.

CONTINUING THE RUMINATION

I really do think that the unconscious thinking of all the stuff that needed to get done with this move over the last couple years really did take its toll out on me and encouraged me to worry and procrastinate more than needed or reasonable.

And made it hard for me to ruminate, which I'm still finding difficult. Darn it.

Oh well, I will get back. I must. It's a part of me.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Things Pile Up: T-8 Days to Relocation

Had an interesting conversation today. It centered around the move to Chicago and the slump that I've felt for awhile now.

I don't really know when the slump started, even though some thought leads me to thinking that it started about two years ago. . .around the time that we moved into our current apartment.

The fiancee and our dinner companion for the night made an interesting observation that even just the idea of a move and impermaneance can make it real in the mind. Having this idea in my head, I subconsciously gathered together anxiety, which lead me to stressing about all these big changes that WOULD happen in a year or so instead of having my thoughts on something in the present.

Kind of annoying that I fell into such an ugly trap. I guess it's a part of being human, though.

Oh well. Best I can do is deal with it and move on, I guess.

Funny that I'm saying "guess" a lot. Wonder if that means anything.

RANDOM THOUGHT

Sometimes I reflect upon sitcoms, serial shows, etc. etc. Do things just NOT happen between episodes. Does day to day life happen without any interesting incident or does anything interesting happen between the episodes?

How modern or postmodern. . .I don't even know if that kind of question falls into the modern or postmodern category.

Such silly ruminations.

Busy During Unsettling Silence: T-9 Days Until Relocation

I guess things on this Blog have been more quiet than I had originally thought. Since the countdown to my relocation, I thought my readers had left at least one comment an entry. Silly me, thinking I'm more popular than I am.

Sadly, though, I also haven't had too much communication with friends or acquaintences over e-mail lately, either. I think this trend has occurred over the last couple years, though. Nothing to pinpoint as the cause for this trend, just a sad one that I've noticed.

Always possible to blame me being way too busy. Other people have probably gotten quite busy or have had more surveilance at work. I figure this stuff happens more and more as we grow older.

PROGRESS ON THE MOVE

This morning, got my haircut with the fiancee then we drove home.

I spent most of the afternoon after that pricing up and organizing some Magic cards. Somewhat surprised by how lucrative the pricing has come. I haven't even inventoried half the cards, and I've already priced up about $1,000 worth.

Afterward, packed up a bunch of books and some other miscellania in my office then moved all the makeshift milk carton shelves into the other room along with three big shelves that I had in there. Took out a whole bunch of trash and recyclables.

The fiancee sold one of the couches to the friend. We've also put a whole bunch of shelves and other stuff in the sun room for the Salvation Army to take away. We also have some shelves and couches in the other room to give away, too. They should be coming tomorrow.

I also want to really do some important chores tomorrow, a little more packing and probably price up some more Magic cards to get an even better idea of how much those cards could possibly get me.

In the meanwhile, I get wait for the Salvation Army people to show up and pick up the stuff. I think I also have some plans in the works to meet up with a friend to watch a movie and hang out in the city. He needs to get in touch with me, though. Maybe I should call him. . .that might organize things a little better.

SMALL AMOUNT OF REFLECTION

This whole moving thing has progressed relatively well. I feel a little guilty that I haven't done as much as I could. The fiancee says I've been doing a fine job, though, especially with all the other things that I have to address. . .even though I guess the whole selling the Magic cards really should be on the back burner in comparison to the move and finding a job.

Curse you, Magic, for absorbing me as much as you do.

Nonetheless, as the move progresses well, it somewhat overwhelms me. I feel it happening quicker than I had imagined it would. Not saying that I thought it would go slowly. . .I just feel it taking on a life of its own and not as something that we can consciously reflect upon too much as it happens. Simply put, it will happen, no matter what we do, and we can just ride along on its progress, as much as we put the original intention to do it and have put the whole process into motion.

I still can't stop feeling overwhelmed by he whole process. This whole overwhelming feeling could possibly have started awhile ago, years ago, when the fiancee and I started dating. I don't regret anything, but as with the move, itself, life seems to have taken on a consciousness of its own since then.

Of course, only shortly before dating her, a few months to be exact, I had taken my first "career" job, a position that I had for four years. That's quite a bit of commitment and dedication to give anywhere.

I also had done a lot of work on my novel and final school project. Back then, I felt a lot more confident about the whole thing even though I knew quite a bit less about the topic. For awhile afterward, I knew enough to get wholly confused and understand what didn't work but not really know how to make progress on the thing. Yet I kept pushing and searching for an answer.

Searching for answers, a took a couple classes. They help build up my confidence but didn't really help me find any answers.

I started doubting my path and ability to reach the end of that path, so I started seeing a career counsellor then after using up our meetings, I bought a whole bunch of career and marketing my skills books. With that information and close to moving time, I started working on getting myself a job. I have yet to get that job in Chicago, but I'm jumping all over the place here.

My communities have changed a lot, too. I moved across the river from the Cambridge/Somerville area to the Allston/Brighton and Newton areas. This adventure encompassed living totally on my own, somewhat, in a studio, subletting once with a bunch of interesting then addressing the issue of moving in with the fiancee when we were just dedicated partners.

Church became less important to me. When I first moved into the Boston area, I started going to the First Parish in Harvard Square just about every Sunday. Even when I didn't do that, I tried making it to the Men's Group discussions and the Young Adult Group social gatherings, which changed character over the couple years I took part. . .some of which I helped mediate, even though I didn't like the final result of that process. Interestingly enough, the results I didn't like occurred roundabout the time I started dating the fiancee.

Becoming closer with the fiancee, I got embraced into her social group, which a mutual friend had been part of for awhile. Some friends from high school pretty much reunited with me, if not as frequently as in the past, at least through communication on the Internet. I drifted away from some friends from church while focusing on some other friends. Other friends moved out of the state for numerous reasons or drifted away naturally. Had some good and bad patches with friends from college while others in that group disappeared.

Joined many Internet mailing groups, ranging from Science Fiction and TV topics, psychiatric health topics in hopes of learning more about myself and political groups, most of which I had to abandon because I found myself investing too much energy into them.

Friendster and MySpace have made their appearanaces. I don't care much about MySpace, but Friendster works OK with me and helps me to stay in touch with a bunch of people who I would probably drift away from normally.

Which makes a good transition into my fighting and accepting the failure to keep in touch with some people who had touched me in the past very much. This move to Chicago has really pushed me to realize the importance of letting go of these people and accepting that they simply don't want to communicate with me. Whatever I had in the past simply hasn't transferred into the present and trying to figure out what went wrong won't solve anything. I simply have to accept that they don't want to communicate with me, no matter how much I try to impress them and I need to just move on with my life.

Happens a lot in this world, I figure.

But now it's pretty late, and my brain has gotten fried.

I really look forward to getting done with this move, which will pretty much taken about a month now since we'll have to transition through a temporary week-by-week tenancy at a hotel then into our Chicago apartment near the end of May, and finding myself a good job. Once I get that stuff done, I think I can get back to my college project and also back to having some good, thoughtful ruminations along with a good bit of sanity and steadiness.

Even though I figure planning the wedding and honeymoon will cause all sorts of interesting stress, too.

Ah well. . .I'll deal with that stuff when it comes. Life is full of this stuff, isn't it?

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Back Home Again: T-11 Days to Relocation

Thanks to everyone who showed the fiancee and me support over the weekend.

Also, amazing how well a Blog can keep people updated on my life. It helped to clear up a little communication mixup with a friend over the weekend because of the screwed up apartment situation.

One good lesson: If someone has a Blog and updates it on a regular basis, read it on a regular basis. You may pick up some important information about their current life situation that you may not get if you tried catching them by phone or through e-mail.

THE REST OF THE STORY

Monday morning, the fiancee and I met up with the current tenants of the place we found on Easter Sunday night and the management company. We filled out the applications. Unfortunately, the company told us that we probably wouldn't hear back from them until Wednesday, a couple days later and the original day we planned on heading back.

We took the rest of the day easy and called off all the other apartment appointments. Figured that checking them out would just waste a bunch of time, ours and their's.

The day filled us with plenty of trepidation. I had left my job effectively last Friday. Combined, we also had some spotty parts of our credit history.

Nonetheless, at some point, we rescheduled our flight home to Tuesday, a day earlier than we originally planned. We really wanted to get home for something happening Tuesday night and also to deal with a ton of errands, packing and job searching that needed doing.

That night, while watching some Law and Order and before heading out to dinner, we got a call from the management company, two days ahead of schedule, to tell us that we got the apartment. Woohoo! We just needed to stop by their office Tuesday morning to sign the lease and drop off a certified check in time to make a flight at Midway Airport at noon.

Pretty early in the morning, we woke up, had some breakfast, stopped by a bank, got a certified check, dropped it off at the management company and signed the lease, ran back to the hotel, caught a cab to the L then ran from the Midway stop to our gate, pretty much five minutes before they started boarding the plane. Exhausting and quite fitting to the whole weekend.

But the weekend turned out quite worth it. Like I said, we've fallen in love with this 900 sq. ft. apartment that has turned out exponentially better than the previous apartment and only costs something like $70 more a month. Great view, awesome interior, affordable laundry, great location near a 24-hour diner, the Lake, a couple minute walk away from church and some other awesome features. Woohoo!

FUN AFTER GETTING HOME

Got home yesterday at around 3ish after an hour drive back from the Manchester (soon to be name Manchester-Boston Area Aiport, apparently) airport. Rested for awhile then went out for some great Indian food in Jamaica Plain with some good friends and interesting people then off to karaoke at the Milky Way Cafe. I did get up to perform on my own, but I got up to do backing vocals for the fiancee and danced quite a bit.

Good fun.

LOTS OF DRIVING AROUND FOR ERRANDS TODAY

That really about says it.

Tomorrow, bunch of job searching, packing and some errands.

Honestly, though, I appreciate that kind of slow life compared to rushing across half the country on a plane for an errand.

I'm getting somewhat anxious about riding on planes lately, after all. Nothing rational at all, just worrying about what could happen to it while I ride it.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Surreal Weekend: T-14 Days to Relocation

The fiancee and I have had one of the wierdest weekends in a long while, as many readers already know.

When we got home from work Friday, my last day, we opened a letter that told us we no longer had an apartment secured for us in Chicago. Suffice to say, we went through a couple stages of acceptance that night. I'm not yet sure we have made it to the end yet. . .but we're getting close.

Amidst the anger and bargaining and cursing, we booked a flight out to Chicago for the next evening then booked a sweet hotel room the next morning. The plan: get to Chicago, find a new place to live effectively sometime between 5/1 and 6/1 after boarding a plane at 6:45ish in Manchester, NH.

Until we leave the apartment that afternoon, we had three friends over who helped the fiancee pack up a bunch of our stuff and another friend over to buy some Magic cards.

BTW, I've decided to quit Magic and sell my cards. . .getting rid of the addict's drug to spend more time with the fiancee and kittens. Figuring that I could better spend my procrastination reading, browsing the Web or watching TLC, Animal Planet, the History Channel or the Discovery Channel, which will help me have more topics for discussion.

The packers did a great job. They packed the same amount of boxes that had been packed before and doubled that amount. We plan on getting back to Boston Wednesday (Tuesday if things work out perfectly), which will give us a week to pack before the movers come pick up our stuff.

We got in last night, got room service, watched some TV then hit the sack.

Today, on Easter Sunday, we looked at three apartments in the morning, took a long nap, got a massage (oh yeah, so stressed out on the way to the airport that I pulled a neck muscle while driving over a roadside curb -- and figured that we needed something to relieve the stress of this weekend) then saw another apartment.

We've fallen in love with the last apartment. Tomorrow, we need to meet up with the current tenant and the management company to have our financials checked and to sign paperwork if everything works out all right. We feel very very excited about it and hope that everything works out. . .especially since this place is MUCH MUCH better than the orignal apartment secured.

Maybe my mom knew what she was talking about when I talked to her Friday night, all angry about the situation, to let her know that we wouldn't make it Easter dinner. The original apartment could've fallen through so that this new arrangement could work, especially since we'll be helping the people who live there now a whole bunch. Maybe this whole immensely stressful and surreal weekend happened for the best.

Tomorrow, we will know for sure.

Hope you have had a less stressful weekend!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Cookies Taste Good: T-17 Days Until Relocation

Second to last day at work, co-workers get me two boxes of vegan cookies, chocolate chocolate chip and oatmeal. They both taste very very scrumptious!

I also received a touching card that I could show to interviewers if they ever ask what my past employer would say about me. My boss/dad said that I'm a great asset to the company and will regret losing me.

Customers and associates at insurance companies have also been giving me plenty of accolades and expressing regret at seeing me leave.

As much as I don't really like working in insurance, a metaphorical tear runs down my face.

MAGIC LAST NIGHT WITH THE GUYS

Unfortunately, can't say that I've accomplished much more than that over the past couple days.

Last night, played some Magic not so great at the gaming store across the river. I didn't play as horribly as I originally think back to it, looking back in hindsight.

Coming down from one beer without much in my belly might have contributed to my bad mood along with some moral indignation at an illegal move that someone else made that I had to accept (but proved was illegal today through e-mail. . .hah!).

I also did some damage to the other guys, though, just not as much as I'd like.

NOT MUCH ELSE ACCOMPLISHED

Tonight, I organized some cards one of the guys gave me as a birthday gift (note to readers: my birthday happens May 12), which used up a bit of time. Probably not the best idea, but I'll probably do some deck construction later while watching some TiVoed TV.

Speaking of TiVo, anyone else record The Daily Show and The Colbert Report and not have enough time to watch it all before it fills up your TiVo, so you end up not recording the shows that you really really REALLY REALLY want, like Lost, Doctor Who, or Scrubs? Sucks.

Read the job message board on the Chicago Craigslist and did some research on a financial information/publishing firm that has an editorial position open. Could be an interesting prospect. I just hope that I do the research quickly enough to dazzle them with my resume and cover letter.

NOT WORRIED ABOUT BEDTIME

So I'm not too worried about my bedtime. After all, tomorrow's my last day at work.

I just need to make sure I get to bed at a good time tomorrow night. After all, hiking a mountain or two on Saturday. I'm really looking forward to the hiking. I haven't done anything good in nature or too strenous for months, maybe even almost a year.

Being busy with tons of things sucks.

At least I'm making some degree of progress on my college Project. Worked on the outline today.

Which reminds me again: Have to call adviser to let him know that most everything's going good, and I will get this darn thing done.

For now, though, I'm signing off. Goodnight.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Lex has Taken Fate in His Hands: T-19 Days to Relocation

I'm proud of myself.

After wasting last week and last night on feeling sorry for myself and lonely because of all this crap I have to do, I have been brainstorming and outlining for the Marlboro Plan Project on my commute and tonight, I did some job stuff.

Not much to say about the Project. I've still got a lot going on in the clouds. Then again, the Project has metaphorical Cities in the Clouds and Chimerae as its topic so can you blame me?

As for the job search, I just sent my resume to a Literary Agency that just started up. The guy who owns it posted a request for manuscripts on the Chicago Craigslist. I don't have a manuscript yet, but even before I seriously started a real search, I made up a resume for the purpose of applying to literary agencies. How cool would it be if this worked out?

I WOULD WRITE MORE BUT BLOGGER SEEMS TO BE ON THE FRITZ

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Lex Don't Have Game: T-21 Days to Relocation

I'm certainly not at the top of my game these days.

It probably has to do with the stress from so much going on at once.

1) Moving halfway across the country

2) Searching for a job when I get halfway across the country

3) Cleaning up everything at my current job by the end of this week

4) Packing

5) Scheduling all types of appointments to polish things up around here

6) Seeing as many people as possible before leaving the area while doing everything else

7) Figuring out what the heck is going on with my academic avocation

8) Coming up with some kind of thesis statement for a paper I'm working on

9) Setting up an appointment with my Project/Plan advisors

10) Planning for a wedding just a little more than a year in the future

11) Trying to keep a relationship going with passion and love

12) This BLOG

I'm saddened that I put the relationship as 2nd to last. I think I'll rationalize that one by saying that it stresses me out the least. =D

But after listing 12 things that have me all stressed out and worried, I can't wonder too much about why I procrastinated a whole ton this week when I got home for work.

This whole procrastinating thing doesn't feel like me, though, especially when I can't come up with a plethora of ideas to riff on that no one really understands on my Blog.

Crap and ugh.

A FUNNY THING ABOUT WRITER'S BLOCK

The more I focus on it, the less I write.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Again: T-22 Days to Relocation

I've done it again. Stayed up late, got plenty distracted and feel as if I haven't gotten much done.

Ah well, it's Friday.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Starting with 'Ugh': T-23 Days Until Relocation

I don't mean to stay up as late as I do.

Things just get away on me.

I have to do chores and errands.

Then I get distracted the TV and other silly things.

At the end, I find myself still up at 10:30, hungry because I haven't eaten much and disappointed because I haven't finished the things that I wanted to do.

The next morning, I get to wake up, work for 8 hours and commute 2 hours for a job that doesn't touch my soul on a regular basis then back home in the evening for the same old cycle of getting nothing done.

Annoying, I tell you, annoying.

Especially when I can't get a decent thought track to latch onto for sharing with my readers.

Blast it!

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Not Taking the Time to Think

With the help of a career counsellor and a couples counsellor over the span of a year or so, I've gathered that I don't sit down, think and prepare for big things like meetings, job interviews, dates and the such.

Apparently to get what I want out of them, I've got to sit down, think and prepare for them.

Does anyone else have this problem?

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Yet Another Saturday: T-29 Days Until Relocation

I didn't accomplish nearly as much as I would have liked today.

Instead of doing job search stuff in the beginning, I addressed some financial things and tried to pay my taxes in a convenient way. Of course, things have yet to work out my way. I still have to wait for an e-mail from H&R Block.

The IRS isn't Burger King, after all.

Otherwise, sent out a follow up letter on an interesting looking research position and updated resumes and cover letters on a couple company Websites.

Tonight, people come over to hang out and possibly play some games.

The other day, I went with the fiancee to watch her play polo and hang out with her polo friends afterward. Fun time hanging and just shooting the poop with people. Been awhile since I could just lay back and hang out.

Not much else to report, sir.