Saturday, July 25, 2009

I hate it when I literally have to give the cold shoulder to someone, but that's just what I did. Literally. Turned my shoulder and pointed it at The Sallow Man's face. This just after I had nice, short conversations with others in the coffee shop. I came here because I wasn't quite ready to let go of the day yet. And, settling in, putting the chain on the door and committing myself to a night of being at home would be letting go and accepting that today was finished. Now, as I start typing this, I'm feeling okay about finally calling it a day.

That was Wednesday night, when I went to my regular coffee shop and got accosted once again by one of the annoying talkers. When I saw him come in, I got frustrated and tried to be invisible at my table. No such luck. He sat down at the table across from me, faced me and stared right at my face. I accidentally looked up mid-thought and made eye contact for a fraction of a second. Realizing my error, I quickly put my head down only to hear, "How are you?" Anger swelling in my stomach, I ignored him. Again, "How are you?" At that, I looked up, feigning surprise that he was talking to me. I answered in one word sentences and he started off on a tangent, of course taking a negative stance on it. I looked up to J, one of the employees whom I've befriended who was there but not working. However, used to The Sallow Man's prattle, he was deaf to it and therefore blind to my predicament. After about five minutes of him staring and talking, and not picking up my very obvious clues, I turned my shoulder toward his face and answered him with nods and "um hmms." Still, he didn't get it. Finally, my real out came when J moved to leave and I called him over to my table. The Sallow Man kept talking until J leaned down to talk to me, then watched the both of us as I tried to communicate that I needed him to break the fucking tractor beam. I kept J there long enough, then when he left, buried my face in my laptop and didn't look up. Five minutes later, The Sallow Man stood up and left. However, I was so annoyed by then I couldn't concentrate, and went home myself.

Lots has happened and I've been thankfully very busy at work, but not over busy, if that makes sense. There was one day that I don't think I looked up from my computer the whole day there, but it's all work that I enjoy doing. And, there's no Sallow Man to distract me. I still love my new job and have been there for a month. One day, I had a meeting at Sony Studios and on my way out saw what I thought were two grips play fighting during a break. Then, I noticed that they were moving very professionally and precisely, which piqued my interest. As I passed by them, I saw it was Robert Downey Jr. and an attractive stuntman practicing a fight scene for Iron Man 2, which was filming near the stage where we were having our event. Totally unexpected and cool. Since I didn't want to get thrown off the lot, once I was far enough down the way, I turned and snapped a photo of them. The funny thing, is before I realized who it was, I was going to snap a much closer photo of what I thought was just a fun slice of life shot at Sony. Thankfully, I didn't.

On a not so fun note, I've had EIGHT palmetto bugs in my apartment over the last ten days. One crawled over my bare foot during an epic battle with a can of Raid, Atticus and Oliver at my side, fighting to get to the cat toy with a mind of its own. I'd been watching television when a large black dot moving across the ceiling caught my eye. I looked up and saw it was a huge Palmetto cockroach, and slowly moved into the kitchen so as not to alert it. I grabbed the Raid, sprayed it and it launched itself into a death spiral toward the floor.

It was on.

The cats flew off the couch as if shot from two cannons. Barefoot, Raid in hand, I chased it while fighting them off as they fought each other to get to the still fast two-inch freak crawling toward my bed. I cringed as it crawled up my comforter across my bed, and then sensed movement from behind me. Without taking my eyes off the roach, I dropped the can of Raid, stuck my hands out to my sides, palms backward and blocked two furry faces in mid-air. Oliver and Atticus landed on each side of me, and upset at getting face-palmed, gave me a level of stink eye that only cats who were just denied a most righteous flying leap pounce on escaping prey can give. Not deterred, they raced around me because like me, they could hear it making its way toward the other side of my bed. I raced toward them block them again, just as the big bastard jumped off the bed, landed next to where I'd just stepped, ran across my bare foot and attempted to go up my pant leg.

Oh HELL to the no.

I screamed, kicked and sent the cockroach flying, body blocked the cats who sprang after it and grabbed the Raid. The fat bastard righted itself but was succumbing to the spray. It hobbled next to the mirrored sliding doors of my closet, then flipped on its back. I blasted its underside, then keeping the cats away, got a large piece of paper and threw it in the toilet.

Not half an hour later, I heard Oliver meowing and looked his way. He was planted at the door, looking up. I followed his line of sight to big fat freak number two climbing up my front door. That one went down with much less drama, until it ran behind my bookcase and I lost sight of it. I imagined having to just deal with the fact that a roach carcass was somewhere in my house until I saw it on its back all the way across the room. That one went in the trash, which immediately went into the bin outside.

I sent several hysterical all caps texts to the landlord, and they sprayed on Friday. I hadn't seen a roach since.

Until tonight.

I was watching TV and heard the cats up to something. I walked into the kitchen and saw them side by side, both standing on their hind legs on the plastic bin where I keep their food. Their paws were draped Kilroy style over the counter and they concentrated on a spot near the sink. I was lost in the moment of how adorably cute they looked, then felt my stomach sink I realized what had probably grabbed their interest. I moved a bowl, and there it was. Big, brown, fat and ugly, antennae twitching at me. The Raid was right under the sink, which meant that I had to reach down close to where the roach was on the counter. Luckily, I've become quite a pro at this and after blasting it, let it run around until it died. I had already scared the cats away when I dropped the bowl in the sink upon seeing the unwelcome guest.

I texted the landlord again. All caps. F-bomb included. He's sending his brother to patch up a hole under my kitchen faucet. It's been there since I moved in, but I think the fat fuckers are finding a way into that crawl space and coming in that way. Especially because I've sprinkled Borax by my front door. That hole was made when they re-piped the building with copper piping and never patched up.

I sent a text to the landlord and thanked him, and said that if we join forces, together we will defeat the mutants.

Lots more, just not tonight.