Monday, March 27, 2006

Hoisted by my own petard

My humor has caught me in a paranoid trap. I am a reference for a friend who's a foreigner. Yep, he's not from around here, and he's working for our government. Not in a Arab Emirates port security fashion, but in a Canadian software guru with Fannie Mae/Ginnie Mae. And this requires our federal government to do a background check to see if he's worthy of security clearances. (Or at least that's what he tells me he's working on.) So I get a call from federal security person Pete, who asks a few questions.

I've done this before for A.--if that is his real initial--and never once have I mentioned that when automatic weapons were banned here in the US, he went out and got himself one and kept it under his bed. Now, you'd think that'd be worth a maple leaf t-shirt for overseas travel, wouldn't you?

After I talk to federal security person Pete, I store his name in my contacts on my Treo, because my Treo asks if I want to. Of course I want to--I do everything my Treo says. But I can't remember Pete's full name, or the name of the agency he's with, so I store it under "Secret Government Agency". (See where this is leading?)

This morning I got into that multi-tasking groove--the one where you're walking down the street and trying to check something on your cell phone while not looking turning into a walking/talking cyborg that's crashing into people and parking meters with paramecium-like skill? That's when Pete called me back. Anyone around me would have thought my phone had given off an electric shock, instead of vibrating. I stopped in my tracks and just stared at it. What does a Secret Government Agency want with me? How did they know my number? It must have taken me a full 30 seconds to figure it out--long enough for it to roll to voice mail--and then Pete doesn't even leave me a message.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

I went to a show tonight; I saw the Spelling Bee musical. Sounds simple, doesn't it? Well, that doesn't factor in Kevin flying to Munich in the morning, me 'borrowing' the neighbor's babysitter, and the mad rush to get there, enjoy myself, and get back home. Since it was a new babysitter, I showed her around, hung around for a while, and then I took Conor aside to say I was leaving--sneaking out so Lucy didn't see me--have a good time, etc. As soon as I drove off, he ran to the window and started crying because he didn't say goodbye. The sitter calls me on my cell phone, and when it rang I dropped it on the floor and it slid under the seat. Figuring it could wait, I continued on my way. I found a parking garage, parked, and checked my messages as I was leaving. (Critical plot point here.) I call back, and Conor's calmed down and oh-so-cool. "Hey, mommy, we're playing with Lego's."

I go to dinner, then to the theater. I call home to say goodnight, but no one answers. Of course, he calls during the show (yes, I turned the ringer off) and leaves a message. I hold my phone in my lap like a hand grenade. We're in the 3rd row--there is no way I can use my phone without being a complete ignoramus. After the show is over I retrieve the tearful "goodnight mommy" message. Damn them for not checking the machine! I leave the theater, and realize I have no idea where my car is. So I pull out my parking ticket, thinking it will have the address on it, and it does--but apparently they have a garage in Hartford, CT, because that's the address. And I can't remember where it is, other than within a two block radius of the restaurant, because I was talking on the phone as I walked. Now this is where the true dichotomy of being a mom comes in. Part of me just wants to hail a cab and rush home to scoop up Conor and Lucy and let them know how much I love them. Another part of me is coldly calculating whether I can find my car *and* stop somewhere for a drink/coffee/dessert--anywhere I can sit by myself and no one can find me--in the 48 minutes I have before I need to be home.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Corporate life

I've been told that I'm very calm--a calming influence, actually. Anyone who knew me at work in the 1990's would choke on their latte if they heard that. But I am! The difference is profound. For example, today I was asked if I was ready to be the point person for a corporate-wide effort because the current point person is going on paternity leave soon. Of course I am, I said, while making a mental note to figure out what exactly this corporate-wide effort entailed. I'm quite capable of explaining things I don't understand. And if I fail to adequately convince anyone of the rightness of this new effort, well, that's not good. But it doesn't keep me up at night!

At the risk of being Dooce'd, I'll write about my boss's boss. The big boss lady, as I affectionately call her. After being asked to be this point person, I figured out how much time it would take me to do such a thing (meetings alone are killers!) and reported back to her that some of my other responsibilities would have to be foisted off on others. Her advice? Just don't be so busy.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Googling along

Today at work I was working on some slides for a seminar. There I was, using the internet to refresh my brain on the nuances of UML notation, and trying to answer the question as to whether an association class is the implementation or the embodiment of a tertiary relationship (anyone still with me?) and I find myself riiiiiight on the edge of PornLand.

Go ahead, Google it.

The first link is what I was looking for, but there are many others. Apparently, the "A friendly but casual sexualove relationship " is the kind of tertiary relationship that is more popular than the one I was looking for.

I don't dare click on any--I'm at work, after all--so I go to, and find out that tertiary means (and I'm abbreviating for short attention spans and to provide cover from plagiarism:

What the hell does that have to do with sex? Oh, I crack me up. This is the internet--it has EVERYTHING to do with sex!

And the banner ad I saw on makes me think that they are much better at target marketing than I think--they DO know who I am. It was a banner ad for, either a very positive spin on those going through treatment, or a way to differentiate between the site for the living and the dead. Hey, you're somewhere between being treated and dead! Come visit us!

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