Thursday, March 03, 2011

More Identity Issues

I am both extremely frugal and fiercely independent, which can be a really dangerous combination. My attitude tends to go along the lines of "Why should I pay someone else to build me a house? I could probably find a how-to book at the library, pick up a few things at Home Depot and then do it myself." (That is a slight exaggeration, but I do know a few things about home construction, thanks to Habitat for Humanity. It would just take me forever because it takes me about a dozen strikes to hammer a nail.) My parents are rather painfully aware of this tendency, so when I mentioned that I would soon be shopping for a new dishwasher, my mom suggested that I should get it delivered and professionally installed, even if there was an extra cost. My initial snarky remark was, "What else would I do? It's not like it would fit in my Focus." She pointed out that she does know me, and then I joked that, on second thought, all the appliance stores are at the top of the hill at the end of my street, so I could probably strap the dishwasher onto a dolly and then ride it down the hill, coasting to my house. My mom said she'd be laughing all day at that image, so in case anyone else needs a laugh, I thought I'd share. I'll admit that I giggle every time I think of it, myself.

And I bet I could make it work, though I'm not sure about the installation part. Maybe the library has a book ... It would probably be tough to steer a dishwasher careening down a hill, though, and the road down the hill does curve.

Yesterday was a low-productivity day. I was bouncing off walls after ballet Tuesday night, so I stayed for jazz. I later realized that the bouncing off walls probably had something to do with the music we were using for class. The teacher had a new CD that I dubbed "The Ballet Class Music that Won WWII" because it was piano arrangements of WWII-era music, and that just makes me want to dance. I was foxtrotting around the room between exercises. The foxtrot is my absolute favorite dance, and I haven't had a chance to do it in years. Switching to 70s funk music in jazz class was a jolt (though I campaigned for using actual jazz music for jazz class). Because the soreness comes slowly, I am now paying for the two dance classes in a row. I'd thought that all that physical activity would make it easy to sleep, but it didn't, and after getting to sleep very late at night, I woke up rather early in the morning.

Then I had a fierce headache for much of the day, which got worse with concentration, and I was kind of stuck on the book. I needed to think about what would happen next and how it would happen, but thinking made my brain hurt. And then there was choir. Strangely, choir seemed to cure the headache (or that was when the Tylenol kicked in). I was afraid that the kids would make my head explode, but I was fine, and when I got home from three rehearsals (children, then the early music chorale and then the big choir), I was finally able to break through the logjam and outline/plan the next section of the book, so today should be a moderately productive day.

I've developed a new mistaken identity situation (to go with the fact that some distant relatives accidentally used my e-mail address when ordering from Dell). A couple of weeks ago, I got a phone call, the caller asked for a person who isn't me, and I automatically said that they'd called the wrong number, but midway through, I realized that the name they'd asked for sounded familiar. Apparently, the hesitation came through in my voice, so the caller asked if I knew that person. It was the person who used to live in my house. I never met her, but she didn't have her mail forwarded, so I got her mail for a while and had no way to get it to her. I think she was a renter because I bought the house from someone else. But I've had my phone number for nearly twenty years, so I know she's never been at this number. I then figured out what must be going on. It was probably a collection agency working through her past addresses and using a reverse directory to get the phone numbers associated with those addresses. Since I don't want those people calling me or getting me mixed up with her, I told the guy what I knew, that more than thirteen years ago she must have lived at my address, but I knew nothing more about her and she could not be reached at this number. I've had a couple of more calls since then, and while they've all been very polite and assured me they're making notes in their records, I'm going to start asking them for their companies' names and documenting these calls because I'm starting to feel harassed, considering this person never had this phone number and lived at this address more than a decade ago. I don't think she's suddenly started using this address, since I haven't had any mail for her in nearly a decade and we've had all new mailboxes since then, so there's even a new key and she couldn't be taking mail out of my box. They just must be trying to find her and have outdated information.

What I need is the electronic version of a moat filled with hungry crocodiles. And maybe a sea serpent. I could ride my dishwasher across the drawbridge, waving my sword.

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