...Not the kind of wheel you fall asleep at...

My Apartment is Haunted...

By the ghost of Murphy's Law. Over the last few months, my cd burner has been in the process of drawing out a long and painful death. So finally this weekend, I decided to buy a new one. I get it home, we hook it up, and lo and behold, the computer doesn't recognize it. After a day's worth of troubleshooting at work and a telephone call with the Microcenter help-hotline which involved much disappointingly UNKINKY discussion of "masters" and "slaves," I finally figured out the problem and got the damn thing hooked up *ALL BY MYSELF* so neh. It took me a while of fiddling but I did it.

Pleased with myself, and basking in the glow of accomplishment, I returned downstairs to find that my apartment was ice cold and getting colder. My furnace had apparently stopped working. The gas company will no longer come out if you are not a) on fire, b) calling in the midst of a huge explosion, or c) hopped up on gas fumes, and I (as per usual) could not get ahold of my stupid landlord. So I spent a very frigid night under 1800 layers of blankets and woke up to find that the thermostat has slipped below 50 degrees during the night. I got dressed as fucking fast as possible (my nipples could've slit someone's throat, they were that hard) and received a call and a promise from my landlord that my furnace would be on when I returned home. Which of course was a lie because he never gets ANYTHING done like he says. So I returned home to an icebox. I called and left several threatening messages on his machine (one other fantastic perk about him is that he lets his voicemail box fill up so no one can leave him messages--go figure--so I've taken to calling him on his personal line) and someone finally came out to fix it at 8:00.

Less than an hour later, I come to find that apparently my vcr will happily play sounds but not images, so I'm sitting there *LISTENING* to The Hills Have Eyes but not seeing a wit of it. A bit of shaking and cord-adjusting later, I fix it. But midway through the movie, I lose all video again, this time permanently. So I say again--apparently my apartment is haunted by the ghost of Murphy's Law--for the past 2 days, things have been crapping out on me, I've been managing to fix them, and within an hour, something else has crapped out...

What next, I ask? The television? The oven? The floor? Shit me up, you shitbag luck, and do it quickly so I at least have something weird to blog about.

Segue into my current concern which is now that I've finally gotten nasty with my landlord (though it was LONG overdue, trust me), I fear he will not be sympathetic to my cause of having cats in my apartment. I called about this the day of the furnace fiasco, actually joking on his machine that for once I wasn't calling about anything that needed to be fixed, just to ask if the folks who own my house would be flexible on the topic of pets (given that my front neighbors have both a dog and cat(s))--this comment about "not needing anything fixed" no doubt instigated the breaking of the furnace (I hate you Murphy).

I want to adopt the (possibly three) stray cats that have become my cat posse. They are all super-sweet and I worry about them being out in the cold now that autumn's come. This is a big step for me because I've always been rather afraid of having a pet, especially since I killed my pet hermit crab (his name was Mynheer Peeperkorn) back in college. I think this may have traumatized me a bit. For the same reasons I'm leery of buying a house or popping out kids or becoming a pilot, I'm also afraid of having a pet. It's a lot of responsibility--you have lives dependent on you, and your ability to up and vacation or move on short notice is a bit altered. That, and I don't like killing stuff.

I loved Mynheer Peeperkorn. I spent three or four hours one night when I bought him a bigger shell trying to catch him moving out of his old and into his new. I fell asleep and awoke in the morning to find that he'd been smart and waited until my eyes had fallen shut to do so. So when I sat him in his usual laundry basket on top of the table so he could climb around, not realizing that he'd gotten a TAD bit bigger than the last time and could navigate OVER the top rim, I was of course devastated when my roommate and I heard him hit the floor all the way from the kitchen. I knew there was no way he'd survive, but I hoped and hoped and hoped. I lived on a needle's head of fear the next 24-hours and realized he was a goner when I returned home to find him huddled in one corner and his shell in the other (they only ever leave their shells to move to new shells or to die--and they will almost NEVER do the former around humans). He was still half-conscious when my boyfriend and I decided to put him out of his misery--he scooped him up with my ladle, and we took him down to the pond nearby and gently placed him in the water as his final resting place. I was upset about this for months--it still upsets me.

Which is part of the reason I've never been eager to have pets or babies. I mean, what if I am stupid enough to stick my toddler in a laundry basket on top of the table and he manages to make it over the edge and fall out? That just wouldn't be right.

This is why it's always been a rule that I wouldn't be having any babies, any pets, or piloting any airplanes anytime soon.

But I think I'm finally all growed up, Ma, because I'm starting to think I may become flexible on the latter two--so pilot me and my kitties up, American Airlines, because here I come!



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