Sunday, December 29, 2013

It's too late. It was already in the glass, not in the jar.

All the apple pie recipes (the beverage, not the dessert)  found on the internet involve cider, apple juice, and a ton of brown sugar. This is a disgrace. So before apple cider season comes to an end in the supermarket, I have decided to share my apple pie recipe. 


The following is the recipe for ~2 mason jars' worth of apple pie.

You will need:
- 4 cups apple cider
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- ground spices, specifically cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger
- 1/4 tsp vanilla
- moonshine, or if you do not know anyone who makes moonshine, a bottle of Everclear will do (grain alcohol, 190 proof). Depending on your tolerance, you'll need 1/4 cup to 1 cup. I shall elaborate on this below. 

To make it:

- In a saucepan, heat the apple cider with the cinnamon sticks, vanilla, and the spices. I don't measure anything; I just eyeball it. You'll find your own preferences with trial and error. I use about 1/4 tsp of cinnamon and allspice, and then a pinch of nutmeg, pinch of clove, and slightly larger pinch of ginger.

- DO NOT let the cider/spices come to a boil. Heat it at a medium or just above medium temperature until it's just barely starting to simmer and/or steam. Turn the heat down to low and let it heat up for about 20 minutes, stirring with a whisk about every 5 minutes.

- Turn the heat off and take it off the stove. Let it sit for about 10 - 15 minutes. 

- Before you even think about opening the bottle of Everclear, make sure all sources of flames and heat have been blown out or cooled down. Seriously. Unless you want a crater where your kitchen used to be, NO OPEN FLAMES. 

- Add the moonshine or Everclear to the cider in the pan and stir it with the whisk. If you're making this to share with other people at a family gathering, party, etc., I would suggest using 1/4 - 1/2 cup of alcohol, so no one gets alcohol poisoning. If it's just for you and you know your limits/tolerance, you can go up to 1 cup for every 4 cups of cider. 

- Once the apple pie has cooled enough that you can put your hand on the saucepan without getting burned, pour the apple pie into mason jars. Keep the cinnamon sticks, placing one in each jar. If you like, you can use a strainer to strain out the gloop that the spices leave on the bottom. Personally I like leaving the gloop, as I feel that it strengthens the flavour of all the spices while the apple pie sits in the jars.

- Let the mason jars cool completely before putting them in the fridge. 

- Occasionally, your apple pie may take on a jello-ish consistency once it's been the fridge for a while. I have no idea why this happens. To avoid it, give the jar a good shake before you open it to pour a drink. 

- Enjoy!

Friday, December 27, 2013

They tried sodium amytal on him three years ago trying to find out where he buried a Princeton student. He gave them a recipe for dip.

Just a quick post to let y'all know I'm still here and ok, 'cause I got a couple emails inquiring as to my well-being. 

Not much to report. Christmas was not nearly as exciting as last year

Got some excellent booty from Mum Santa.

Mum and Lil Sis, in their attempts to drag me into the 21st century, also surprised me with a Kindle Fire, the screen of which I have been compulsively cleaning ever since. (And also re-reading Red Dragon).

 I feel like my old college roommate when he got his Mac laptop--he rarely let anyone touch it, and if you were allowed to touch it, you had to go wash your hands first with the most dehydrating soap that we had in the bathroom.

Pretty sure I also gained back all the weight I may have lost the last month or so, as I have been compulsively over-eating since Tuesday. ...A good thing?

Hope the rest of you had a lovely Christmas!

::slithers back into corner to polish kindle::

Monday, December 16, 2013

You son of a perverse and rebellious woman!

The thing with the boy upstairs isn't going anywhere because he's definitely not interested, which should not surprise me because he's a genuinely nice guy and at this point in life I know that no genuinely nice guy is going to like me EVER because they never ever ever do, so let's pretend that last post never happened.

Confession time. (...and ED trigger warning from this point on...)

I feel like an epic fail. 

But if I can't be honest with all y'all, there's no point in this blog, right?

I have stopped eating again. 

This built up over time, I guess. The Sunday after Thanksgiving, I woke up suicidally depressed for no reason (that I could think of), and I have ridden a roller coaster of mucky emotions since then. That whole week, I got more and more cranky and depressed until it came to a head on that Friday, at which time I went home to my apartment and tore down all of my Christmas decorations, throwing most of them into the bin. 

This used to be my favourite time of year. I LIVE for Christmas. 

I couldn't let the depression take over again. I can't go back to that--living every day like a zombie, hating everything, spending most of my time contemplating different ways to end my life. It was a f*cking nightmare and I'm not doing it again. 

Not eating stops the extreme depression. 

It's a different demon this time, though. I still haven't weighed myself, so I have no clue how much weight I've lost. I know I've lost weight, though. My bones are starting to stick out and my size 0 jeans are baggy. 

My boobs are gone. It's very sad.

I try to eat, but I just ........can't. Went out to dinner with M. last night to the Texas Roadhouse--which I love and which has delicious food--and I ate maybe 5 little pieces of onion blossom, and like 2 bites of my steak. I felt really guilty, too, because M. (we've shared ED's for years) has been doing really well, but last night he hardly ate anything and I feel like it's because I wasn't eating. (He did eat later; we had some smokey treats and then he ate all the leftovers.)

Stepmom keeps inviting me over for dinner and I keep making excuses, but now today is Dad's birthday so I know I can't blow her off this week, and so I'm terrified. 

Mumsy wants me to go out to dinner one night this week, and I'm twice as terrified of that. I can get away with not eating in front of Stepmom (and Dad's not an issue because he's totally oblivious to anything I say and do), but Mumsy knows all my tricks. She's also psychic, and according to Lil Sis, has been secretly monitoring my weight every time she sees me because she "has a feeling" something is wrong.

I don't want help. (Not that I could afford it even if I did want help...) To start eating again, you need to want to do it. And I don't. I'm just not hungry. Not for food, at least.

I just don't know.  

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Love is a burning thing.

BrianSlade the office dog was acting energetic today. Normally he just sleeps, or sneaks up behind me to beg for dog biscuits. I never hear him, I just get a whiff of dog and dog-breath (WHICH ARE BOTH THE MOST DISGUSTING SMELLS EVER BTW), and then turn to see him standing there, a foot away from my chair.

And then he starts chattering his teeth like he's trying out for Hellraiser.

Today though, he started frapping.

But like most dogs, BrianSlade is not very intelligent. Which inevitably leads to

He thinks he's a lot smaller, apparently. The poor dog is constantly walking into things, and bashing his face on walls and furniture when he turns his head.

So, these exist:

I'm tempted to buy them, but I know I'll eat the entire box in one sitting, so I must resist...

Remember when I first moved into my hobbit hole, I talked about my absolutely freaking gorgeous neighbour upstairs

Guess what

He's single now


He's also in a band (second from left, in the hat).

I hung out with him upstairs the other night.



Ok so maybe you guys can help me out with this because my bff M. and his theatrics have got me over-analyzing it to the point of mental illness.

So Thanksgiving night I got home at like 8.00. While I was fumbling with my keys because I forgot to leave an outside light on, delicious neighbour scared the crap out of me (which is nearly impossible; I am ashamed) when he came hurrying down to my door to apologize for his uncle parking in the spot next to mine.

His uncle moved in a couple weeks ago, and usually parks up the other side of the house. There are four parking spaces, two for me and two for them, but none of us really bother with worrying about whose spot is whose. Neighbour's uncle (as well as other friends and relatives) have parked in that spot many times before.

But neighbour came to apologize anyway, even though he has to know full well by now that I hardly ever have visitors.

And then he casually mentions that he and his girlfriend broke up.

(Which was awful, because I had to try really REALLY effing hard to act sympathetic while fireworks and flaming rainbows were dancing around in my head.)

And then he said I should come upstairs and hang out sometimes.

M. believes that delicious neighbour orchestrated this on purpose. I'm not so sure. I mean yeah that is totally something I would do, but I'm a girl. Idk how guys operate. :/

BUT I intend to pursue this. Potential awkward living situation be damned!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

excuse me while I go burn my bra

The holidays are upon on us, and you know what that means!

And endless stream of mothereffing gift baskets and boxes of junk food.

This is officially the first of the season, it arrived today. So you can fully appreciate its size, here's a pic of the box with my hand in it:

That there, my friends, is a 20-minute decision-making process every time you want a piece of chocolate.

Nasimiyu posted a link to this article a few days ago, and even though I knew I shouldn't because it would just make me angry, I started browsing through the rest of that website. Everything they post is in a similar vein, with them hiding behind "oh we didn't mean it, it's satire, we're just being funny" whenever people get pissed off.

(I apologize in advance for the swearing.)

Now I am probably not what anyone would call a Feminist, mostly because I am too lazy to properly care. I believe in equality between the sexes, but I also do acknowledge that ladies are very different from gentlemen.

....not that anyone on is a gentleman, but that's besides the point...

......also it really REALLY pisses me off that they have called their site "Return of Kings," because that makes me think of The Return of the King, and NO FRACKING WAY IN HELL should any of the douchebags responsible for that website EVER try to have anything in common with Aragorn. Because they don't. So from this point on, I shall re-name them Remaining Men Together.

....ok getting back to these idiots over at remaining men together dot com....

Women are different than men. Biologically speaking, we are hard-wired to play the mother/nurturer while the lads do the hunting/protecting thing. Does that mean that all women should become Susie-homemakers? Hell no. That's the beauty of the society we live in. While it is far from perfect, most of us do have a choice in what we want to do with our lives.

And then you get cretins like these people.

Let's take a closer look at this massive work of bullshit.

click to embiggen if the writing is too small

Or the list of things women shouldn't be allowed to do.

Or this article about how we all secretly love "pretend" rape.

Or this one, a How-To guide for guys who want to turn themselves and their friends into walking talking septic tanks of venereal disease. 

I believe in freedom of speech, and what better place to exercise that than the internet? But I do not believe in this level of stupidity. There is nothing wrong with being a man, and enjoying your manliness to the fullest. (Please do, because I also very much enjoy manliness.) But the standards these idiots are supporting make the lives of women in the Old Testament look like a fucking picnic. With pony rides and prizes.

uughhh I can't even talk about this anymore.

Let's look at my cats instead.

Harley and Ivy are not amused.

Friday, November 22, 2013

that was just the house settling

Idk how normal families act around each other, but growing up in my family, it was the norm for us to constantly attempt to frighten each other to death. Hiding in closets and under beds, setting booby traps, leaving horrific things under bedcovers, lurking around every corner, surprise blitz attacks--anything we could think of to terrorize each other, no matter how immoral or impractical, we did it.

(Just an FYI to anyone who is in this competition now, or whose children seem to be getting into this behaviour pattern: there are only two possible outcomes for everyone involved--they turn into either hyper-vigilant neurotic nervous wrecks, or they become stone cold sociopaths.)

The attacks do not begin until it is fair to start attacking. As in, it is not fair to try and give an infant or toddler a heart attack, although Lil Bro#1 bent the rules with this quite a bit with his frequent attempts on Lil Bro#2's life, and his inappropriate level of glee at seeing Lil Bro #2 suffering.

Lil Bro#2, Big Sis#2, and myself have honed our abilities to the point where they have just become part of our personalities. We constantly freak people out without meaning to. Basically we have gotten so awesome at stealth, we no longer have to try.

This little game makes life way more entertaining, and just because you're "grown up," that does not mean that the game needs to stop. If anything, it should get better as you get older because everyone playing gets better at their particular skills, until you and your siblings are all old enough that heart attacks resulting from fright become a real possibility, and then you keep going until only one of you is left alive.

So here's some lessons for anyone who wants to start terrorizing their family.

This one is the most important, and takes the longest to master. You need to develop extreme patience--as in, the patience required to remain in one space (possibly a dark and/or confined one) for extended periods of time (Lil Bro#1 holds the record for that, with approximately 90 minutes spent in a trunk) without making any noise whatsoever, and without fidgeting. 

You'll need to get your timing right as well, so your skills of observation should also be developed. That extra 45-60 minutes spent in the cabinet might make the difference between a pretty good fright

and an epic achievement.

Learn your enemy's habits, such as your little sister's ritual of checking the closet and under the bed before she goes to sleep.

And do some mini-attacks when their guard is down, such as when they are exiting the bathroom.

In the end, you could end up as fantastic as Big Sis#2 and myself, with your family constantly accusing you of having the power of teleportation, because no human should be that quiet when entering a room and walking right up beside you.

You need a certain sort of creative cunning to be able to consistently pull this off without your victim developing the habit of checking every corner of every room with a metal detector in one hand and a machete in the other.

I shall use examples of past booby-trappings:

1. The Television.
For a while, when Lil Sis would piss me off, I would sneak into her room when she wasn't home, turn up the volume on her TV to maximum, on a channel with nothing but static, and then turn the TV back off and leave the remote exactly where it had been before I entered the room.

Lil Sis rarely watched the TV in her room. She watched stuff on her laptop instead, in bed.

We both had the exact same televisions in our rooms.

Which meant my remote worked for her TV, and it worked through the wall.

You can see where this is going.

I repeated this booby trap an absurd number of times, always changing it slightly.

...or on the rare occasions she was watching the TV, messing with the volume and/or channels, or just turning it off over and over again.

I still do this to her car, when she blocks me in and won't get off her lazy arse to move it. I move it, and leave the radio on the heavy metal station with the volume loud enough to shatter your eardrums.

2. Radios and cassette tapes.
Sadly this one has pretty much died because of technological advances that erased the use of cassettes. But myself and my cousins enjoyed it to its fullest potential.

Any of ye 80's babies ever play with one of these?

This was hands down the greatest toy ever released in the history of toys. (Or it's at least up there in the top five.)

A fairly simple device - it came with a tape and it had a microphone, so you could record pretty much anything, and you could also speed up or slow down the tape when recording or playing it back, which meant you could alter your voice (or anything else you recorded).

Whoever thought it was a good idea to mass produce this thing for children had a twisted sense of humour, because EVERYONE I know who had one of these used it to torture other people.

Like M, who stole all of his stepdad's Bruce Springsteen tapes, fast forwarded to like halfway through each tape, recorded himself making loud and ridiculous noises, rewound the tapes to their still unchanged beginnings, and then replaced all those tapes back in the car where he found them.

Or my cousins, who recorded thirty minutes of total silence, and then recorded sounds of a door creaking, turned the volume way down on the Talkboy, and then left it playing under one of the beds in their sisters' room right before we all went to bed.

oh yeah and then there was like 5 more minutes of silence before a final very quiet creak, and a blood curdling scream.

I'm not gonna lie. This scared the living daylights out of the three of us sleeping in the room at the time.

3. My Size Barbie.

My friends and I picked up one of these at the end of someone's driveway my junior year in high school. (Don't ask.) She has since disappeared, most likely because of how she ended up on this list.

One day, a couple years ago, Cousin F. and I thought it would be super funny if we propped Beef (that was her name. also don't ask.) up against the door of Lil Sis's closet. Inside the closet, so that Beef would fall on Lil Sis when she opened the door.

This produced hilarious results. So we had to keep going.

For the ensuing two years, Beef popped up to terrorize Lil Sis whenever she least expected it.

even after Lil Sis wasn't scared anymore, I still kept doing it.

...until one day I realized that Beef had disappeared. I asked Lil Sis what happened to her, and at first she couldn't remember.

Then she took me into our bathroom and opened the closet. Lil Sis had apparently left Beef propped up in there beside the laundry basket in an attempt to scare me.

Beef was in the closet beside the laundry basket for over a year and I didn't even notice.

Since then, I think Mum threw Beef away, because she was sick of Lil Sis's screams in the middle of the night.

This one is fairly straightforward.

For some reason, if it's not me attacking Lil Sis, it's someone else attacking me. Big Sis#2 believes that this is because even the best attempts at stealth-terror have not managed to so much as make me flinch for the last ten years....

Friday, November 8, 2013

when the going gets weird.....

The leader of my writing group sent out her monthly newsletter with this fun little writing exercise/survey in it. Since I am AWFUL at coming up with book titles, I kind of enjoyed this. (The questions all come from a book by Will Dunne, The Dramatic Writer's Companion, which I've been told is very good.)

......I did not, however, come up with a better title for the book in question. "apocalypse thingy" it remains. 

What do you other writers think? Do you have title troubles as well? Do this with me!!

What would your title be if it . . .

1. Summed up your whole story in a single word? (examples: Proof, Cats, Hairspray) Apocalypse

  2. Used so many words we could barely remember them all? (example: Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mama's Hung You in the Closet and I'm Feeling So Sad) ...I couldn't think of an answer for this one

  3. Asked a question? (example: What Price is Glory?What Do We Do Now?

  4. Issued an order, warning, or advice? (example: Play It Again, Sam; Don't Drink The WaterUse Your Common Sense

  5. Named your main character? (example: Hamlet, Tiny AliceBrick

  6. Described your main character? (example: The Lord of the Rings, The Miracle Worker)  School's Biggest Nerd Becomes Fearless(Not Really) Leader in the Midst of the End of the World

  7. Issued a statement from the main character? (example: I Married a WerewolfThis sucks.

  8. Named your two most important characters? (example: Romeo & Juliet...couldn't answer this either because there really aren't two "most important" characters...

  9. Described a set of characters? (example: The Odd Couple, Angels in AmericaThe Only People Left on Earth are Children, a Convicted Killer, and a Battered Housewife/Redneck. (<--this one has potential I think)

10. Highlighted the setting? (example: Our Town, Little Shop of HorrorsAnywhere Safe in Upstate New York

11. Highlighted the date or era? (Twelfth Night, Year of Living DangerouslyArmageddon 2012

12. Focused on something physical? (Schindler's List, The Diary of Anne FrankWe Might Need More Guns

13. Highlighted a certain feeling or mood? (WickedDoomed
14. Combined two elements usually not matched? (example: Arsenic and Old Lace, Cries and Whispers) ...couldn't come up with an answer for that

15. Suggested a lesson? (How the West Was Won) How to Survive Puberty with No Parents, No Electricity, No Running Water, and Oh Yeah Nuclear Fallout is Pretty Much Everywhere So Get Your Arses into the Forest Like Now. (<-- this is also a potential winner)

16. Were a metaphor? (The Silence of the Lambs, A Doll's House, The Lion in Winter) yeah I'm no good with coming up with those kinds of artsy metaphors

17. Summed up the main event? (Waiting for Godot, Death of a SalesmanFinding a Safe Place When There Really Aren't Any

18. Identified the subject of the story? (A Beautiful MindThe End of The World Sort Of

19. Identified the genre or category of your story? (Pulp Fiction) Middle Grade Apocalyptic Fiction (btw this genre did not exist until I just invented it)

20. Made a literary allusion? (Of Mice and Men, Brave New World, Gaudy Night)  ummm... there's a bunch of Old Testament allusions in the book but I feel like any title I come up with relating to that will just sound trite..... other news, I am still a starving writer. But I get paid today, so hopefully I will be somewhat less starving. 

Friday, November 1, 2013

You better take care of me Lord; if you don't, you're gonna have me on your hands.

Random(ish) ED/recovery update....?

I've been doing pretty well with the whole eating disorder recovery thing. I finally reached a point where I eat what I want when I want, don't over-exercise (or exercise at all, to be honest.......), and occasionally spend a Saturday eating a feckton of junk food with my friend C and don't feel bad about it afterwards. 

One day we're going to have a reality show, and it will be glorious. 

I haven't weighed myself since November, 2011. I haven't taken laxatives or ephedrine or any other starve/purge aids since about the same time. I don't feel a crushing sense of horror and doom every time I look in the mirror. 

And the biggest victory BY FAR: I do not spend every single waking moment thinking about calories and how many I've had and how many I'm allowed to have and how many I might have later and how I'm fat fat fat; and I have to say it really feels amazing to have my brain back.

[Yes, there is a "but" coming.]

I knew moving out of Mumsy's house would be a major adjustment, particularly in the area of budgeting my expenses. And I suck at that. But I've gone over the numbers repeatedly (in Excel, because I totally suck at math and Excel does the math for me) and based on what I make at my job, I can afford to pay all my monthly expenses (rent, electricity, car insurance, loan, petrol, cat food, getting my hair bleached, Netflix), with roughly $200.00 a week leftover for extra things. 

But because of all the bloody issues with the license/insurance/etc (among a couple other things, like my bank and Experian stealing my money) on top of all the expenses involved in the actual move, a massive dent has been put into my bank account. I cannot afford ANYTHING but the basics.

The main essentials, on a day-to-day basis, are cat food, petrol, and my food. Unfortunately, over the last month or so, they have been prioritized in that order.

I need petrol to get to work (it's an hour each way, so even with a car that is awesome on petrol, that's still quite a bit of money every week). The cats need to eat, and I love them like they're my babies. I absolutely will not underfeed them. 

And so the money left over for me to buy food for myself is not very much money at all. 

This both frightened me and didn't frighten me, at first. I can deal with this, I thought. Because of the eating disorder, I know I can keep going (physically) on much much less food than a normal person. I can eat just enough to stay conscious, keep the cats fed, and keep my car fueled until I can get back on my feet, money-wise. Also I'm not exercising anymore (I cancelled the gym membership entirely), so it's not like I'm overexerting myself. This will be totally fine.

It started out fine. I wan't thinking about weight loss--that never even crossed my mind. I mean yeah, I figured I'd probably lose some weight, but I didn't really care one way or the other. 

Until about a week and a half ago, when I was watching TV in bed (and probably frightening my neighbours because Tim Hawkins is seriously frigging HYSTERICAL), and I happened to notice how much my hipbones stick out when I'm laying down. 

I couldn't resist the curiosity--I got up and did something I have not done in over a year. 

I ran my hand down my back/side to check my ribs. 

But then I stopped and said NO IT'S EVIL, DON'T TOUCH IT and tried to put it out of my head.

Between then and now, two friends and Lil Sis made comments that I have lost weight. And a little dust-mote-sized demon crawled into my brain and laughed gleefully at this information. 

Cutting down on my groceries suddenly got easier. 

And then Monday I was texting back and forth with Stepmom and she said how great I looked in my David Bowie inspired outfit for 70's day at church on Sunday
me and the Bros, are we a f**king gorgeous family or what
I was complaining how I hate wearing pants (seriously I think every single person in church that day was like HOLY CRAP, ARE THOSE PANTS!?!??) because I still have some issues as far as hiding things like my thunder thighs

and then Stepmom goes, "oh don't worry you look great curvy, and you'll get a chance to slim down once you start going to the gym again."


In fairness, Stepmom is the skinniest person I know and I'm pretty sure she's one of those women who thinks that barely eating anything ever and working out 10+ times a week is totally healthy, so her perception of "curvy" may be slightly off.

This has been a giant mess of brain feckery: am I losing a lot of weight? Then how freaking fat was I before I moved?? How fat am I now?!?!?

As I said in the beginning, I was doing pretty well with recovery, but not perfect. My biggest remaining issue is probably the mirror. 

I have NO IDEA what I look like. I look in the mirror, and most of the time I still see a whale, so I mostly avoid full-length mirrors.

.....and literally at the end of the day today, one of our clients walked in and said, "JESUS CHRIST you got so skinny!!!" with a semi-concerned look on her face.



I don't know what to do. I am definitely not anywhere near as crazy/disordered as before, and I am thankfully NOT slipping back into that awful depressive state that took over my life for the last year, but I DO know that this could be a problem. I don't want two years of working towards recovery to be for nothing. I CANNOT GO BACK DOWN THAT ROAD.

Advice? Thoughts? I fired my shrink because I'm poor, so I'll accept any thoughts or suggestions y'all got. 

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

America... just a nation of two hundred million used car salesmen with all the money we need to buy guns and no qualms about killing anybody else in the world who tries to make us uncomfortable.

Continuing my quest to transfer my life from New Jersey to New York....

So Progressive wouldn't give me car insurance when I tried to get it last week because I could not furnish enough proof that I live in New York. If you don't have a NY drivers license, then they need either a W2, proof of homeowner's or renter's insurance, at least two utility bills, or a paystub. 

I could furnish none of these things--my W2 doesn't have the new address; I only pay for electricity, so I only get one utility bill; and I write my own paychecks at work, so they're not like official paychecks that show all the tax deductions, and therefore Progressive said that's not good enough.

I shall use the World's Most Accurate Rage Scale to describe my feelings from this point on:

Today I purchased renter's insurance. I called Progressive and sent them the declaration page, and said okay can y'all please give me insurance now because my current policy kind of ends in 3 days.

A summary of my conversation with Progressive this morning:

Mich: So you have the renter's insurance policy now with my New York address, can I get the car insurance now?

Progressive Salesman: Hmmmm... yeah I'm looking at it now and it looks like your renter's insurance isn't enough proof of address. We're going to need a W2, a paystub, or maybe you could send us two utility bills?

Mich: ...but your list of stuff said renter's insurance was good enough proof of address.

Progressive Salesman: Yes, well it looks like we'll still need a W2, a paystub, two utility bills, or a copy of your New York driver's license.

Mich: I don't have any of those. And don't even get me f*cking started on the driver's license.

Progressive Salesman: don't have any utility bills? Or a W2?

Mich: I only pay for one utility and therefore only have ONE bill. And since, as I have already told you and your associates, I JUST MOVED, my W2 has my old address on it.

Progressive Salesman: Okay then... Well I'll tell you what we can do. We'll sign you up for auto insurance using your New Jersey address, and then you can transfer it to New York as soon as you have the proof of address.

Mich: Ummmm.... okay, that works I guess. Sign me up for New Jersey insurance. 'Cause I kind of need car insurance like now.

Progressive Salesman: ...Oh I'm sorry, I just spoke to my supervisor and it looks like we can't sign you up for New Jersey insurance because you live in New York.

Mich: ....................what.

Progressive Salesman: Sorry ma'am*, but we can't give you New Jersey auto insurance because you live in New York. 

Mich: ...So you can't give me New York car insurance because I can't prove that I live in New York, and you can't give me New Jersey car insurance because I live in New York. 

Progressive Salesman: I'm sorry, ma'am.

Mich: You do realize how ridiculous that is. 

Progressive Salesman: Sorry ma'am. 

Mich: *facedesk*

Progressive Salesman: What I would do, ma'am, is go to another company like Allstate or Farmers and sign up for an auto insurance policy with them under your New Jersey address. And then switch to New York once you have proof of your new address.

Mich: So what you're telling me is that in order to obtain car insurance, I should commit insurance fraud. 

Progressive Salesman: I'm sorry ma'am. 

Mich: . . .

Progressive Salesman: Is there anything else I can help you with today?

aaaaaaaaaaaaaand so now I have just lied to my old insurance salesman and told him I moved back to New Jersey. 

To top it all off, the stress has been giving me near-constant headaches, which has forced me to actually wear my glasses. >:(

look how smart I am


*Can I just say that I really really really really really really really really really frigging hate being called "ma'am."

Friday, October 18, 2013

you think your family's disgraced now, well don't get me started!!!

I have now embarked upon what may well be one of the most infuriating tasks any American will ever experience.

Despite the fact that we are all Yanks, moving to another state is like moving to another country. Everything needs to be changed. Officially changing my address with the Postal Service was the first and easiest step--I filled out a form online, paid $1.00, and my address is now officially the new apartment.

Yesterday, I took the morning off work to go and get my New York drivers license. I had originally hoped to get the license and car registration out of the way on the same day, but in order to get NY car insurance, I need a NY drivers license first. And in order to get the car registered in NY, I need NY car insurance.

This country is just WINNING at efficiency.

So yesterday morning I drove to Port Jervis to the DMV, because the only other one nearby* is in the ghetto. The previous day, I had gotten all the necessary forms off the New York DMV website, and checked to make sure I had enough points of identification--according to their website on Wednesday, I would be okay with my NJ drivers license, my passport, and a bill with my name on it.

After a short wait at the DMV (a room in Port Jervis's municipal building, roughly the size of my living room), I was told that since the government had been switched back on that morning, the ID requirements had changed. My NJ license, passport, and bill were no longer satisfactory--I needed either my birth certificate, or my social security card.

(My mother lost my birth certificate shortly after she received it back in 1984. The last time I tried to get a new one issued, the New York Health Department informed me that they could not find it. We'll get back to that.)

Fuming, I raced back home and proceeded to search through my belongings for my social security card. I also texted Boss and explained the situation, and said I was just going to take the whole day off to get this over with. He said that's cool. I found my card after like an hour of searching, and drove back to Port Jervis.

I actually had a much shorter wait this time, but then when the nice lady behind the desk was entering all my info into the system, she seemed to hit some kind of road block. She called the manager over, who tried to help. The manager got on the phone with someone and was making that frowning face that says "This is not going to end well."

Manager, it turns out, was on the phone with the Social Security Administration, attempting to verify my information.

Long story short, I no longer exist.

The Social Security Administration accidentally erased me.

By then, it was around 2.30 in the afternoon. The ladies at the DMV said I should go to the Social Security office in Newton, NJ (because the other nearby one was in the ghetto) and have them sort it out there. If I could get back to Port Jervis before 5, they said they would bump me to the front of the line so I could get my license.

So I drove to Newton, to the Social Security office.

I got there at about 3.15. A sign on the door said that they had closed at 3.00.

I could do nothing but admit defeat and go home.

138 miles of driving. More than 3 hours in the car. A personal day off work.

And to top it off, I do not exist.

So I bought myself some cheap wine and went home. Dadum brought me pulled pork and fried onions from his work, which cheered me up some. Lil Bros #1 and 2 came over, too, which was nice.

This morning, after getting into work, I called the Social Security Administration to inquire as to WHY THE FUCK I am no longer in their system.

While on hold for half an hour, I thought I might try and create an account on their website, which apparently anyone can do. I entered all of my correct information (name, birth date, social security number, etc.) and received this message:

Just to make sure, I had the secretary next door create an account for herself. She did not have a problem.

 When I finally got someone on the phone, they managed to find me in their system, BUT they said the information I gave them did not match what was in said system.

Basically, because some imbecile made a typo at some point, I need to (1) get a copy of my birth certificate and (2) make an appointment to go to the Social Security office and sit down with someone so that I can (3) apply for and acquire a new social security card.

How exactly did I manage to go 29 years without running into this problem? How was I able to procure a driver's license in NJ at age 17, and then again at 21, and AGAIN at 25?? How did I manage to get multiple passports between 1984 and now?!? How did I manage to become employed, and PAY MF TAXES, and yet that magical number they use for all of those things does not match up with my info??!?!?!?!?

I just shelled out $30.00 to order a new birth certificate from the State of New York. I recall doing this several years ago, when I wanted to get an Irish passport. And I also recall being told that the State of New York could find no record of my birth. (And that $30.00 is of course non-refundable, even if they don't give you a birth certificate.)

If that happens again, the Social Security Administration will not meet with me to fix my information, which means no new social security card, and no NY drivers license, no NY insurance, and no NY car registration.

If that happens, I have a good mind to stop paying all my taxes, because why in holy hell should I be paying taxes to the government when, according to all relevant government agencies, I do not exist??

To be continued....

*Out here in the boonies "nearby" is a relative term. It generally takes an hour to get anywhere.