Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Hot Stuff: Puppies, Pahkin' the Caaah, and Self-induced Poverty

Preparing to rejoin my Bostonian brethren for canned cranberry sauce (sliced, of course), fixin's, and a Pat's game. Not that I'll watch it intently or know what's going on. Anyhow, I'm kind of psyched to ride the T (Wonderland! Aquarium! Copley Squa-ah!). Despite the smack I talk about Beantown, I do sometimes get nostalgic. (But it's no New York.) As a semi-related digression, I'm going to blow off some holiday steam: why must all of my colleagues and just about everyone who comes over my house make comments about my "weird" eating habits? If I were eating a cheese-smothered steak grinder and sucking down a cherry-flavored Slurpee, no one would blink. But because it's a flippin' salad, or a tomato, or the berry smoothies I bring for lunch, I'm a *freak.* They get upset when I refuse to eat the courtesy nosh (BEEF! DONUTS! Watery coffee!) that's laid out in the lounge. Blech. I don't judge them when they eat stale, icing-smothered danish. Why am I so weird?

I did get to give out iPods to some smarty-pants kids today, though, which was pretty cool. And it was on tv!

Back to business: Lots of home-related developments today. Fixed the furnace for $200 (needed new transformer), so now I have heat! I was kind of getting used to freezing my tuckus off and toughening up (ready for some winter camping! cowabunga!), but oh, well. The electrician never showed, but I did have a dude from PNM check for gas leaks. My bill, for only six days of svc, was exorbitant (probably bc the furnace was busted, but still burning gas). Fortunately, there's no leak. B/c if there were, I probably couldn't afford to fix it. I met with Grace, the security bar lady, on my lunch break. She's been in business for forty years, and has probably been smoking for much longer. She sounds like a lawnmower riding roughshod. But I like her. Of her enormous selection, I actually found some iron bars that I found aesthetically pleasing -- and not prison-like. They were kind of artsy-fartsy cool, but not overwhelming. The cost? Upwards of THREE GRAND! (Remember, the windows are going to be more than $3K, too, so that's nearly $7K, right up-front, right now.) She doesn't take credit cards, which is good and bad, nor does she have a payment plan. It's no secret: I don't have three thousand big ones to shell out for security bars. Nor do I want to take out a loan. Not right now. I've decided to deal in cash until I absolutely can't. I've got a few years, and I don't want to go into debt. I'm only invested in this house for as long as it takes me to fix it up and sell for a profit. Then, surely, the wanderlust will pull me somewhere else (probably further west, is my guess). So why get into lots of debt? I can stand to take it slow, can take the dust and the ugliness for as long as I can manage. I'm doin' it the old-fashioned way -- which is how I like to do just about everything. Besides, I don't even think I *own* $3K in valuables. My foremost concern is safety... a problem possibly solved by a new, mean n' nasty, cuddly pup.

I was looking online at the shelter dogs for adoption today, and man, am I a sucker. I even called to be sure they wouldn't put them down over Thanksgiving (they don't make a habit of euthanizing, they said, but I've heard conflicting information from other sources). I'm not enchanted by the idea of having another thing to take care of, but don't find $3K of security iron on my doors and windows appealing, either. Another dog is just more love, right? Anyhow, I'll wait to make a decision on this. Don't want to be rash! In the meantime, just look at what I'm up against. How can you say no?:


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