Thursday, October 11, 2007

I Totally Suck

I know, I know, I know – I suck. I haven’t posted in…I don’t know, a while, and I haven’t even been going online and commenting on other blogs. Long story short, life came up; for everyone who sent me emails telling me to get off my lazy ass and post – fuck you, and for all of those people who expressed real concern that I was dead or something – you’re all awesome, and I wish my excuses were that good. So…where to begin…

-The Yankees lost, they broke my heart, and I will say right now that I have NO sense of humor about it (I was at the game on Monday). So if you want to give me a hard time, do so at your own peril. I will not think it’s cute that you’re ripping on my team no matter how cleverly you’re doing it; I actually dumped a guy not two days ago for doing that exact thing, and I haven’t had a moments regret over it.

-Finally broke things off with the Irish Bartender and promptly started dating a lawyer who seemed great – ie. all the expected attributes: cute, tall, intelligent, blah, blah, blah. Then he gave me the twin punch of making fun of my college football team (fucking Badgers) and my baseball team (fucking Yankees) in one conversation. I ended things right there. Yes, I’m that big a bitch.

-I now have no doubt that Con Edison is fucking with me – Christine actually asked me yesterday if I’d ever dated and dumped someone who worked there, because that was the only reason for the last year of my life. Let me explain:

Around January last year I got a HUGE bill from Con Ed – we’re talking $800 here. Now, I live in a little apartment in NYC, my heat is paid for by my building, I pay my bills on time every month, and I don’t have jack shit in my apartment that would even come close to using large amounts of energy.

Important note: For all of you unsuspecting souls out there, a bit of advice – you should check the bottom of your bills to see if there is a teeny, tiny EST note. That’s all is says, EST; there is no further explanation. What that means is that your bill is an estimate, it is NOT a real number from a real reading. What your gas and electric company is trying to tell you (as inconspicuously as possible) is that they found something while doing your reading that didn’t make any sense. So they are simply billing you a normal amount for the month while keeping an eye on things. (Another note: They are not trying to figure out what has gone wrong, they are simply watching. Closely. While fucking you over.) If this “weird” pattern of, say, high power usage continues, they will then simply charge you the difference for the past however many months that you have been paying an estimate; they will do this all at once. Now keep in mind, if you by chance didn’t notice the EST sign, no one at your gas and electric company has made you aware of it or contacted you in any way to help you try to fix it. They have simply kept an eye on things and then sprung the whole shitstorm on you after, oh I don’t know, four months has gone by. And trust me, when you do get that aforementioned huge bill, you are going to feel fucked over. You are going to rant and rage that no one made you aware of the problem sooner so you could, I don’t know, SAVE YOURSELF SOME MONEY. And you are going to find yourself even more pissed off when you learn that no one you speak to at the company cares that you’re upset, since technically they were under no legal obligation to do anything beyond put that little EST note at the bottom of your bill – which they did. But I digress…

So, after many conversations with and visits from Con Ed (which lasted a couple more months while my bill continued to rise), it was determined that I didn’t have a massive energy sucking THING in my apartment, per se. In fact they couldn’t figure out what the problem was (there was no evidence of anyone stealing energy or anything like that). Finally in a last ditch effort, Con Ed suggested that maybe I should have my super replace my refrigerator “just in case.” We did, the bills went down again, and I ended up just paying the (at that point) over $1000 that I owed Con Ed (even though I rent my apartment and my rental company should have covered it since it was their refrigerator – something about them not actually finding anything “wrong” with the old one, me not wanting to start a huge fight, them giving me a good deal on this year’s rent, etc. etc.).

Anyway, so I was at home yesterday, minding my own business, when the apartment goes dark. TV goes off, lights go out, refrigerator turns off, etc. So I call Con Ed – was it a power outage I ask? No, they answer, but let them check…oh. Oops. It seems that someone else in my apartment building hadn’t paid their bill, and Con Ed came to shut off their power yesterday, only – wait for it – they fucked up and shut off the power in my apartment instead. They apologize, they’ll reimburse me for the day (yay $6, I’m going to party!), and they’ll send someone back out before 8pm (it’s 10am at the time of the call) to turn me back on.

It was a looonnnggg fucking day, let me tell you. I got my power back (finally!) at 5pm – I’d lost my laptop and phone to dead batteries hours before then – and my delight lasted for all of two minutes before I found that (drumroll please) when they cut the power, they completely blew out my cable box. I’m going to get a new one today. So…yeah – Con Ed hates me. I hate them. They have all the power (literally), and I will continue to let them kick my ass because I have no choice in the matter. The end.

-Have some things going on when it comes to jobs – will let you know more later. I will say that I had a 3 hour interview last week, and doing that to ANYONE is just cruel.

-How I’m going to live without my afternoon naps and Bob Ross’ The Joy of Painting once I go back to work is beyond me. Christine said it best two days ago: Redhead, just face it – you’ve become a cat.

-And now for the main reason I haven’t posted: Christine. Let me say before I begin that Christine is one of my best friends in the world, so keep the comments on her nice. Good, now that that’s out of the way, where to begin? Well, as many of you know she was fired right after I was laid off. Keep in mind, this was the second time this year she was fired, and neither time was it as nicely done as it was when I was let go. She then promptly got her purse stolen (which made going out difficult since she didn’t have a license or passport to prove her age), and the guy she had been seeing bailed on her. This all made her…fragile. My normally very stoic and not at all needy friend became needy. And emotional – all things that freak me out.

Then last week the shit hit the fan. As some of you may remember, Christine was in the process of moving a couple of months ago. Unfortunately, the places she wanted to move to weren’t going to be available for a couple of months – but that wasn’t a huge problem, right? Wrong. You see, in the meantime Christine got fired, and when the time came for her to move, the building she was moving into finally got around to calling her company to verify her employment. Yeah, you get where this is going – needless to say, they backed out. Then her psycho fundamentalist roommate started eviction proceedings on her. Then she found a place that said they would help her out – which was great until about 2 weeks ago when the landlord tried to behave…inappropriately toward her. When she didn’t respond in kind, he took the apartment back. The week before she was going to move in.

And that’s when Christine lost it. She completely lost it. Like I was worried about her mental well-being lost it. And for some reason, I was the only person she felt she could turn to. She completely cut off all communication with everyone except me, she essentially moved into my apartment (I don’t live with anyone for a reason), she cried nonstop, and she looked to me to, and I quote “run her life.”

I was suddenly expected to do everything for her. When she got an email that she had to respond to, I was to write out the response (she didn’t trust herself to communicate with others). When her friends and family started to panic when she wasn't responding to calls and emails, she simply texted them my phone number and asked me to tell them what was going on when they called. She couldn’t stand looking at apartment listings, so that fell to me as well. (Mind you, I’m trying to FIND A JOB right now – every time I go on an interview I have to sit through an hour of ‘why is no one calling me for interviews?’.)

This has been…

I don’t know guys. I know I joke around a lot here, but I honestly haven’t had it in me these past two weeks. I’m stressed out, and it’s not my life that’s making me feel this way. I’ve actually been escaping to my parents’ house in Jersey for overnighters just so I can get away from one of my best friends. That’s not normal.

Yes, I know that she’s being especially needy, and that everyone is allowed to fall apart once in a while. And I know that it’s how you respond during the tough times that prove one’s friendship. But…I just don’t know how much longer I can take this. I’ve always been a really solitary person. I seek out friends who give me space. And maybe…I don’t know, maybe I’m just not built for this. Maybe I’m just not cut out for really close friendships and the expectations that come with them. And the thought that any of what I just said may be true terrifies me. I feel like an awful person.

So there it is, the depressing truth – I’m a shit. I’ve been playing caretaker to a grown woman for almost two weeks now, and it seems like that’s my limit. For a family member I could see myself doing this for as long as it took, but for anyone else…You know what, I’m going to stop talking now. If this topic is bumming you out half as much as it’s bumming me out, I’m really, really sorry.

OK, shrug and deep cleansing breathes. What’s going on with you guys? Miss me?


onthevirg said...

It's alllllllllive!

Glad to see that you're alive and...well, alive. As for all the other shit you've had going on, all I can say is it doesn't sound like a lot of fun. I've read stories about ConEd and they sound like the Anti-Christ.

Re: Christine. I'm trying to be nice here, but come the fuck on. How old is this chick? I know she's your best friend and she's having a rough time, but it might be time to nut up and tell her to stop acting like a 15 year old girl. The amount of dependence she's showing is just ridiculous, not to mention not healthy. I'll just leave it at that.

Good to have you back!

TK said...

Sweet bubbling baby Jesus.

Well, let me say... it's good to have you back. And I will refrain from sports shit-talk, because I HATE it when people do it to me, and I'm turning over a new leaf. Ask Onthevirg how nice I've been.

As for your new... uh... roomie... I mean... well... you did the right thing by taking her in and helping her out. Absolutely. But that shit has limits. If it's as bad as you're saying, she sounds like she needs professional psychiatric help, not to wander around your house bawling. But I don't think it's bad for you to have maxed out on being someone's emotional crutch. Shit, I've given up on friends because of that shit.

Anyway. Glad you're not dead.

rs27 said...

About Christine- I think it's a lot easier for all of us to say "Well this has its limits or get rid of her, blah, blah, blah" when its not you.

This same thing happened to me. My best friend lost her job, got kicked out of her apartment and stayed with me for 2 months. In a studio. Yes. A studio apartment. It was rough. I was going to work and she was watching the Cosby Show and complaining all the time. If she was my girlfriend I'm sure it would have been different, but when it's someone thats really close to you like that, its hard to just let it go.

I think you need to just talk it out with her and see what happens. Thats what we did and it was rough but we somehow got through it.

P.S. Glad you're not dead.

rs27 said...
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Redhead said...

onthevirg: I KNEW you missed me! Yeah, Con Ed really is the anti-christ, I really, truly, and sincerely believe that. As for Christine - I'm just glad I'm not the only one who thinks this has officially gotten out of control. I spend all of my time wavering between thinking I'm a horrible person and thinking she needs to get her shit together.

tk: Thank you for holding yourself back (otherwise this could have gotten ugly - my sports psyche is suffering right now). As for your take on the Christine thing - you sound like my mother (that's a good thing); she keeps telling me that I need to sit Christine down and explain to her that she just has to cut it out. My thoughts on that: You're both right, but I REALLY don't see that conversation going well. At this point, I truly believe I'm the only thing holding her together, and I don't need the guilt of sending her off into the world on her own right now. But give me a few more days and guilt won't be enough to stop me.

Redhead said...

rs27: Aw, there's nothing like hearing 'glad you're not dead' to brighten the day. Thanks for the advice (and 2 MONTHS - jesus, I wouldn't make it; you're clearly an angel). Just out of curiousity, how did you go about 'the talk'?

onthevirg said...

Listen, I'm not a totally insensitive prick and I realize there's a point in time when friends are going to need each other. That's what friends are for. But there's a huge, difference between looking for support and empathy or being a bubbling, co-dependent, needy wreck.

It sounds selfish, but it's not like you don't have your own bullshit going on that needs to be taken care of. Figure out a way to have "the talk." It'll be difficult, especially considering we're talking about...well, you. You have to do it though.

And I can't talk shit about your team since your's at least made it to 4 games.

Anonymous said...

Glad to have you back. I thought you had died or gotten married or something drastic like that. Sorry your life sucks right now, but it will turn - it always does.

Jack Cobra said...

For some reason I was thinking the next time we heard from you would be on a Dateline NBC Special. That's bad news for my entertainment hopes, but good news that you are still alive and not married/raped/killed/a mormon.

As for the roomie, it's obvious that the quickest way to get her out of your hair is to make an unwanted sexual advance on her, no?

Redhead said...

virg: Yes, I feel SO much better that we lost in 1 more game than the minimum. Thanks for reminding me. Oh, and you had a good point there - everyone needs to keep in mind that I don't do tact well, which could make having 'the talk' with Christine much more dicy.

anon: The thing is, my life isn't so bad (taking Christine out of the equation). The job search is going well, the offers I've gotten have been interesting, and I got another call for an interview in the last hour. Socially I'm doing fine (I just need to stay away from moronic boys who want to mess with my sports teams). I just haven't had a ton (read: any) private time lately do work on the blog/read other blogs. Things should change soon though - Christine may have found a place (read: hellhole) to move into temporarily. Please, God.

jack: Aw, there are the warm fuzzies again! So sorry I couldn't add to you entertainment, but I really do try hard not to end up a statistic on the evening news. (I'm ignoring your last comment because you're an idiot.)

Jack Cobra said...

Hey, I based my last comment on historical evidence. The super tried to put the moves on her and she bolted.....I put some thought behind it.

MCBias said...

Christine is a smart girl, right? Did well in school, etc.? I think that it's hard to get back up after you're used to being competent. So you stop making decisions, and all of a sudden you're lost. No fun at all.

However, I think it's relatively easy to get her back on track. Start by asking her to put together a daily schedule. It can say "10-2, cry my eyes out"; that's fine. But it has to be something she'll commit too. You can make it sound better by doing the same yourself; explain it's a team thing, since you both have a lot of time on your hands. Then, slowly escalate the level of decision-making she has to do from there--just walk her back up the ladder of decision-making. Should work.

And wait...I haven't said anything mean yet, and that's a shame. Really, buck up; you can't babysit a friend for 2 weeks? Who, once she gets put back together, will be good for years of good times? It's a long-term investment; just make it already. You've earned yourself years of "Here let me do this for you because you helped me that month I was going through a hard time" for yourself through this. And this should be good practice in dealing with long-term relationships with men. See, both women and men get too set in their singleness as they age, and we get dreadfully spoiled. Every so often we need to have to get along with someone at close range to get out of our patterns. Sure it's embarrassing at first to see how bad we are at it; but hey, better to practice with friends than mess up relationships with romantic others, right? (wait, is this why my friends hate me? :-p) kidding.

rs27 said...
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rs27 said...

Well this might not mean anything since she might have found a place..but my friend and I are just different people. We;re not very delicate. I just flat out said we have to talk about the living situation. We talked about it and I think you'll be surprised how understanding Christine will be. I'm sure she doesn't want to lose your friendship.

Then again, maybe I don't know anything and she'll go crazy, but I was surprised how well my friend took it because she has a very volatile personality.

She threw a glass at a bartender one time because he wouldn't serve her.

She wasn't drunk.

rs27 said...

Why do I keep double posting? I stink today.

Redhead said...

jack: Excuses, excuses - you're still an idiot.

mcbias: I actually think you totally nailed the problem with Christine - she's always been intelligent and sucessfull. Now that her life is falling apart, she's lost all that confidence and doesn't trust herself. It's a nightmare. The planning idea is good too, but I'm totally not doing that myself (I don't do the plan out the whole day thing - that would suck). As for everything else - I don't buy it anymore, I know what a softie you are; I refuse to take offense.

rs27: Your friend sounds AWESOME - absolutely the kind of person I would love to hang out with. When it comes to Christine, she used to be the type that I could level with (as I am), but lately...

Jez said...

Um, silly question here, but why doesn't she go hang out at her parents' house? I mean, what the fuck, are you her MOM?

Redhead said...

jez: You're such an understanding dude. Short answer - her parents aren't home right now, her dad is doing some work in Europe for the next few months and as you guys know, Christine lost her passport (and is still waiting for a new drivers license). Slightly more complicated answer - you know how some parents are very understanding and never make their kid feel like a loser no matter what? Yeah, well Christine's parents aren't like that. She hasn't told them the full story of the eviction/problems finding a place to live, and she doesn't want to (it won't end up making her feel better - trust me). So yeah, I guess I do get the role of mom now. Thanks for reminding me.

A Lover and a Fighter said...

My god, if there is something I hate more than Con Ed (besides butter) I don't know what it is.