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2005-02-16 - 7:05 p.m.

mmm... new computer...

I'm spending some time getting to know the rocking new work laptop. Hurrah!

Sorry. I feel better now. What is with people who do this? I'm all for carpooling, but if it means you're going to sit outside and honk, then get mad that they're not coming fast enough so you honk more, then really start taking your frustration out on your horn until I want to walk out there and rip the steering wheel out of your car, then I think you're going to have to travel by yourself from now on. I wish I really was that powerful and I could lay the smack down. Instead I sit in my front room and write grouchy things. Not quite as decisive...

Now sit there and keep reading while I babble about my teeth

I need to find a dentist and soon. I'm such a pansy about this kind of thing, and it has been so frustrating to find out that I'm actually very squeamish about dentists because I never thought I was before. I thought that people who were worried about going to the dentist were just paranoid and couldn't handle a little gum-poking. Since that time, I've gone to an evil dentist and have discovered that I really need to apologize (in my mind) to the people I've insulted (in my mind).

I went to a little place very close to my house because it's close to my house. Bad idea. I walked into a waiting room that was about 10x10 with magazines from 1983 and ended up with a little tiny man with frizzy gray hair leaning over my in my burnt yellow 70s chair. He started talking to me about my interests, blah blah blah, and then discovered that I worked for Icky Company. This lead to a lengthy discussion that mostly entailed me cringing every time he missed and gouged a chunk out of my gums while I listened to him rail against the products made by my company and how I was getting rich off of him. (Yup. My retail salary was really causing the prices of the products to skyrocket.) Then, desperate to change the subject, I mentioned that I studied geography in college. I got the time-tested "What were you planning on doing with a geography major?" I went on to the urban studies minor, hoping if I kept babbling (somewhat incoherently due to the sharp objects and blood in my mouth) I would be able avoid hearing Little Annoying Man talk. This turned into a full-on rant (yelling and all) lambasting Mayor Daley because "he's the one who's taking my business away, him and his taxes and his gentrifying and his kickbacks to the city..." This went on for quite a while and I didn't really mind. Hearing people rant about Daley is one of the more amusing/sad/intriguing things about Chicago. The problem was that the yelling and waving-of-hands and such also meant that my mouth was even bloodier than it had been during the previous conversation.

Part of me feels somewhat bad for this guy. He may have been a great dentist before the bitterness took over, and he was forced out of his (gross, old, poorly decorated) practice by Daley and the skyrocketing real estate prices in Bridgeport. But I also think he's instilled a bit of a dentist-phobia in me that I never had before -- and I'm not too happy about that. I don't need any more neuroses than I already have.

But if you're reading this and you're in Chicago (Loop or near South Side), recommend your gentle, non-scary, MetLife-accepting) dentist to me!

List Du Jour -- some things that annoy me more than they probably should

-Circular logos with the main portion of the phrase cutting across the middle. For instance, here. Being that I am a member of an English-speaking culture, I have a fondness for reading left to right and up to down. It takes me an abnormally long time to figure out what all of those jumbled words actually mean, and then I get very frustrated with the graphic designer who thought this was a good idea.

-People standing on escalators, blocking everyone else from potentially catching a train. Actually, it's not so much that I'm in that big of a hurry, I just feel very strongly that escalators (and even worse, moving walkways) ARE NOT RIDES. If you go to an amusement park then it's a great idea to sit back and enjoy the mechanical wonders around you. But please refrain from doing that escalators and moving walkways unless you want me to... (oh, who am I kidding. I'll just end up saying "Excuse me," walking past you, and you'll never even notice I'm annoyed)

-The phrase, "It is what it is." It doesn't make any sense!!! Obviously it is what it is. That's because it exists. This is what people say when they can't be bothered to come up with words that actually describe their feelings. The English language is just filled with descriptive words -- try a few of them!

-The aforementioned honking @$$holes who refuse to walk 3 feet instead of annoying the neighborhood.

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