Sunday, March 23, 2008

Drama at the Disco

Well, not the disco. But "Walgreen's" is neither alliterative nor sexy. Also, Walgreen's is not actually relevant. But I'm getting ahead of myself.

I had errands to run today, and I ran them with vigor. By the end of the day though, my vigor was fading. One of my errands was to pick up some prints which I had ordered at Walgreen's online photo ordering joint this morning. I pulled into the drug store parking lot, left the kids in the van with the relative, and sauntered into the store. I noticed that Walgreen's had upgraded its photo center. I was mildly pleased, as anyone would be, when something gets upgraded that you neither cared passionately about nor felt dissatisfied with before the upgrade occurred.

It was, like, a counter, with like a guy behind it, and bins of photos and stuff.

Me: I'm here to pick up some photos for Lydia.
Guy: Linda?
Me (irritated): LI-DEE-YUH.
Guy (rooting around in the standard sized envelopes): Nothing here for you.
Me: Well, there were a couple of 8x10s. It would be in a larger envelope.
Guy: (rooting around in the larger bin): Nope. Nothing here for Lydia.
Me: Okay, I ordered them online.
Guy: Ohhh, you ordered them ON-LINE. Well, that all goes through Kodak. And they have to send them to us, and then we--
Me (interrupting rudely): Yeah, the web site said they would be done half an hour ago and I got an email saying they were ready. So.
Guy: Well, are you sure this is the right store? Because there's another store on--
Me (interrupting rudely, with gritted teeth, sarcastically raised eyebrows, and disingenuously widened eyes): Yes, I know. I ordered them sent to Walgreen's on 810 21st Street. I've ordered prints here many times. I'm sure about the address. Thanks.
Guy: But are you sure you're at Walgreen's?

And at this point Guy points to his bright blue vest and there on the lapel is the logo: Rite Aid. At first I thought, "Rite Aid ate Eckerd last month. Have they now burped, swivelled, and eaten Walgreen's???" And then I remembered pulling into the parking lot of... Rite Aid. With my van, and me driving it. The next realization I had was that I was a giant ass.

Guy was a cool-looking gay dude and up until now this had been kind of annoying me because I was in full mommy mode and he was coyly denying me my pictures. At this point, though, I was glad. Because Guy and I had a good laugh over it. But seriously, I am now in negative karma in a bad bad way. On the day before Easter, I practically assaulted a photo counter employee and then haughtily revealed that I had no idea WHERE I WAS.

The Easter Bunny is going to bring me a fried goat turd.

UPDATE: When I was looking for an image to illustrate this point, I google-image-searched "wallgreen's" and obviously I spelled it wrong. And result #11 was a picture of Joshilyn and Stephen Colbert. Investigating further, I find that she also spelled WALGREEN'S with two l's in her astute observation about where you can buy underpants. So, we both assed our spelling of Walgreen's, but she's the one that got to meet Colbert. IS THIS THE BEGINNING OF MY KARMA SMACKDOWN!?

Yes, Google, I did mean Walgreen's.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Across the Universe: Movie Review

If you like the Beatles, you will like this movie. If you aren't a fan, there is absolutely no point in watching it. There are no interesting characters, and there is no plot. There are, however, really interesting covers of Beatles songs. So, that is attractive.

It's like "The Science of Sleep" but with really no characters and more music. It's like "Moulin Rouge" but with no very great acting. There are thirty Beatles songs in it. People sing a lot. The same people sing song after song. But he's not Jake Gyllenhaal, and she's not Chloe Sevigny.

Some of it was amazing -- puppets, masks, special effects, beautiful. Some of it was very very clever -- "I Want You" and "Happiness is a Warm Gun" in particular. Some of it was, okay, schlocky: "Dear Prudence" and "All You Need Is Love." Okay, listen, I told you no one is going to win a reward for writing this or acting in it. However, it is very engaging. And I do love the Beatles. If you look at it as a very very long music video with regrettable interludes of talking and historically romantic layers, your expectations will be correct.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Introspection on Spine and Death

I have this herniated disk in my spine. I've had it for a long time, and at times it's better and at times worse. There's no way to make it go away, outside of surgery which presents its own set of problems. So here I am. I take Motrin when I remember, and Vicodin when it gets obnoxious, and I march onward. There are millions and millions of people who have way worse physical problems than I do.

Insignificance notwithstanding, occasionally I get feeling a little desperate about it. I have two small children and I would like to be able to bound around and frisk effortlessly like some sort of lovely gazelle, instead of creaking around at times with all the elegance and vivacity of a pile of firewood.

I am, I must tell you, a person who feels omnipotent. I was raised by people who told me I could do anything I wanted, not in a sparkly dreamy-eyed way, but in a factual, casual way. Like, of course. So having something physically wrong with me which prevents me from doing things like running is very irksome. Because it's incontrovertible. Karate is not something that I chose to abandon. That choice was not mine. Sometimes I have felt like life sort of stretches out with limited choices from this point, and I have to keep dragging on through it with this or that painkiller.

I don't think about it a lot, but when I do think about it, it's kind of depressing.

Which is why I was surprised the other night when a new thought presented itself. I was having my usual glancing and wincing relationship with this issue while I was getting dried off after a shower. I found myself thinking that I only have to put up with this irritation for a while longer, and then I will be dead, after all it is only a body, and I am only in it for a while. This thought was not distressing to me -- it was comforting, like realizing you're going to be trading in your car. I wouldn't have thought, five years ago, that I would ever approach mortality in this kind of shitty, oh-well manner. I mean I'm sure one girl's shitty-oh-well is another girl's wow-enlightened but for me, I'm a little disappointed in myself.

I'm not dead yet, after all. No need to be getting philosophical.