Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Lessons in Loving Mr. Wrong

This started out as something much longer, I had explanations under every header at least four or five sentences long, it ended up being roughly four pages long, and I felt like it was less meaningful.  I started talking in circles and was getting so philosophical that I lost my way.  Instead I’m just going to list the lessons I’ve learned over the years of loving the wrong men, because after all there hasn’t been just one Mr. Wrong. 

Now it is not my intention to bash all the men I’ve dated or had feelings for, I’ve made my fair share of mistakes and I’m willing to accept responsibility for any part I’ve played in hearts getting broken.  That being said, I feel like I’ve learned a lot about myself, and a few coping mechanisms on how to deal with a bruised ego, broken heart, and oceans of tears.

I’ve learned that once someone gets in your heart, really deep in there, they never really get out, and that it isn’t always the curse it might feel like initially.  I’ve learned to accept responsibility for my own actions, but to also place blame where it is due.  I know that in plenty of dating situations I’ve given all that I could, that I’ve done everything in my power to make it work, but I also know that there have been times where I wasn’t invested enough to put the effort in to have a successful partnership.

Now that I’ve gotten the disclaimer out of the way, here goes the list of lessons learned.

1.       Don’t Forget To Love Yourself

2.      Sharing Is Great, When You Both Share

3.      If It Feels One Sided It Probably Is.

4.      If You Want To Be Treated Honorably, Behave Honorably

5.      Listen To Your Gut And Your Friends (even when you don’t feel like following their advice)

6.      Don’t Beat Yourself Up Over An Ended Relationship

7.      Recognize That It Ended For A Reason (this is when logic trumps emotion)

8.      Holding A Grudge Doesn’t Solve Any Problems

9.      Just Because You Have A History Doesn’t Mean You Have A Future

10.  It Is Not Possible To Love Someone Enough For Both Of You

11.  Settling For Less Than What Makes You Happy Makes You Resentful

12.  Loving Someone And Being In Love Are On Different Planets.

13.  Just Because His Family/Friends/Pets Fit, Doesn’t Mean He Does

14. Stop Chasing Someone Who Doesn't Want To Be Caught.

15.  You Can’t Fix Someone Who Doesn’t Know He’s Broken

16.  Know When To Lace Up Your Walking Shoes

17.  Time Really Is The Only Healer

Some of you may notice that my list is ripe with clich├ęs and I won’t deny it.  There are reasons you have heard a lot of these things every time you get hurt, they are all true. Some are easier to deal with than others and you won’t believe any of them until you experience them for yourself.  I didn’t learn these lessons in any particular order, nor do they have an order of importance, and I know there is a lot more left for me to learn about love and relationships.  I am in no way ready to give up on finding love and Mr. Right, but I am learning to be more careful about who I give my heart to.

Friday, August 5, 2011

The Customer Service Letters I Wish I Could Send...

UPDATE 08/22/12
Dear Infinate Math Skills,
I know you need an 8 passenger vehicle, I do not have one of those in my fleet, I do however have one that is larger and would accomodate your needs if you should choose to accept it. I realize that companies do manufacture cars with 8 seats, but I do not carry every car that was ever made. Please listen when I try to explain that to you. You do not have to speak to me like I'm an idiot and that you know more about what cars I have available than I do, I assure you, you do not. Also? If it appears that I have completely checked out of the conversation, and quoted you an obscenely high rate without even checking availability, you would be correct. Mostly because I just don't want to deal with you anymore.

UPDATE 07/23/12
Dear Desperately Seeking Someone
Just because I am nice to you doesn't mean I'm interested. It means I'm in the customer service industry and am paid to not be an asshole. I do not want to run away with you. It is not appropriate for you to tell me that my life is incomplete because 1. I do not have children, 2. I don't want to have YOUR children. Just because I am not married or wearing significant jewelry does NOT mean that I am available to you. You do not get to introduce your siblings to me as "your future sister-in-laws." You don't get to ask me if I am dating my boss or co-workers. NONE OF THIS IS APPROPRIATE BEHAVIOR.

UPDATE 07/11/12
Dear Expired License
Why are you mad/surprised that we can't rent to you? You do not have a valid driver's license. It is not legal for you to drive a car, I sure can't put you on a contract to drive if it is illegal for you to do so. Please leave and stop giving me the evil eye. This is your fault not some "BS that [we] cook up to make it more difficult for [you] to get a vehicle"

UPDATE 06/13/2012
I'm not even sure how to phrase this in the form of a letter, but here is an example of the ridiculousness that we have to deal with in customer service.

customer a: do you have a restroom we can use?
 co-worker: its out of service right now
customer a: any suggestions?
co-worker: McD's is right next door
customer b: the bushes right outside the building
me: um please not the ones right behind my window...
customer b: don't worry honey, you're wearing glasses, you won't be able to see anything he's got


UPDATE 06/04/2012
Dear CrankyPants No Reservation Grandpa:
If you don't book a reservation, we can't hold a car or lock in a rate, we tell you this while you're getting rate quotes from us. You chose not to book a car. Please do not have someone drop you off unannounced and demand that we have exactly what you inquired about a week ago. We do have a car available, but the rate is different...because rates change depending on the size of the car and our availability. If you wanted the rate locked in, you should have made a reservation.  Also when you're small grandchild is acting fussy in the office because you're having a hissy fit and are making him nervous, please don't tell him he's a "bad boy for throwing a fit because [he's] not getting his way." The kid is mimicking your behavior asshole. If you want him to grow up as a respectful human being you have to act like one around him.

Dear Uninsured:
If you do not meet our minimum requirements you cannot rent a car... no what ifs, thank you have a nice day.

UPDATE 01/19/2012
Dear Insufficient Funds:
If you can't afford the minimum deposit on the rental (or do not have a credit card/debit card in your name) maybe you shouldn't be renting the car. I am not "tying up" all your funds to destroy your fun family trip. If you cannot leave the deposit because you want to "go shopping" and can't afford to do both, maybe this trip wasn't planned very well. Plus if you were planning on spending all of your money before returning the car, HOW WERE YOU PLANNING ON PAYING FOR THE RENTAL TO BEGIN WITH? Do you think we'll feel sorry for you because you were irresponsible with your spending?  I can guarantee that I won't.

Dear Damaged Goods:
I cannot automatically refund your security deposit if you return the truck you rented damaged.  Even if you claim to have full coverage auto insurance. They are not separate issues. There are several steps to take when a vehicle is damaged and handing over cash to you isn't the first step... its actually the last, and often your insurance won't cover damages to a moving truck, especially if that damage was due to your negligence.  No sir, I'm sorry, it was not my fault that you "aren't a truck driver" we don't require special licenses for our trucks. You are the one who backed the truck into your house. It was your responsibility. Be an adult here.

I'll update as the crazy continues... but here's some to wet your whistle:

Dear Psycho Customer~
Everytime you rent you're a problem, you're rude, demanding, uncooperative, and have poor hygeine. Just as an FYI if you continue to yell at me, call me a liar when I honestly tell you that we're sold out of cars, change your story multiple times, and go on and on about how poorly we treat our customers, it doesn't inspire me to want to to try to help you. It will make me do the opposite. There is probably a reason why NONE of our competition will rent to you.

Dear Bad Parent~
It is highly inappropriate for you to give your barely potty trained toddler a boomerang as a toy to play with in public.  It is even more inappropriate for you to allow your child to throw said boomerang at my staff.  The worst part was when you said "Oh isn't he cute? That's the love of my life." What you should have said was "I'm so sorry. Are you okay?" Then after you got the confirmation that no one was injured you should have excused yourself and your child to have a little talk in the parking lot about what kind of behavior should be exhibited in public. Your coddling and encouragement of being rude and basically violent to strangers isn't going to produce a kind loving member of society, its going to produce an entitled little shit head who thinks that everything he does is cute and okay even when it clearly isn't.

Dear Senior PDA Couple
Thank you.

Dear Smokey McSmokerstein
I do not find it even slightly amusing that you are demanding a non-smoking car (our whole fleet is non-smoking) because you are highly allergic to cigarette smoke, and yet you are a chain smoker. Hypocrite much?

Dear Cancelled Reservation
Sorry we do not hold cars for customers who are 1. not qualified renters and 2. cancel their reservations. No I will not "burn in hell" as you suggested because you do not meet our minimum qualifications to rent a $30,000 vehicle.  Its not "poor customer service" as you feel because we are not allowing you to use someone's credit card that you have written on a scrap piece of paper as a form of payment.  Get back on the crazy train and go home.

Dear Deadbeat Parents (not to be confused with "Bad Parent" mentioned above)
We are not daycare, we are not here to watch over your assumed loved ones. While I understand that not all of you will fit safely in one of the moving trucks to go refuel, it should not take 2 adults to go put fuel in a truck.  One of you should have stayed behind with your children instead of leaving them unattended in my office.  Yes they were well behaved (actually, they were much better behaved than you were) but that is beside the point. Who leaves their children with complete strangers in a place of business? What if something had happened to them? Who would you have held responsible? You didn't even ask us if we minded that you leave them behind.  I wouldn't leave my purse behind, why would you leave your kids whom you should value more?  Also when you returned to check in your vehicle instead of cussing us out that you felt it was bullshit to be forced to refuel the truck you used since you didn't want to be charged the service fee for us taking care of it, you should have said "thank you for letting my kids stay here while we took care of something we should have done before we returned in the first place (per our signed rental agreement).''

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Helpful Resume and Interview Tips and Pointers

Both of these are listed on my facebook page, and are about a year old each... however as we embark upon the hiring journey, I felt it appropriate to share again, and as a single post.
Resume Pointers:
1. If you claim to be a perfectionist, that you always pay close attention to detail, and will do whatever it takes to make sure you get the job done right the first time, PLEASE remember to hit the spell check button on your word processing program. Also make sure your grammar is at least passable, I'm not an English teacher, but when your sentence structure is so poor that it makes it difficult to read your cover letter, I probably won't even print your application and turn it into our hiring manager. Plus simple mistakes like these prove that you are not in fact a perfectionist, and that you do not pay close attention to detail, that in truth you are just using the buzz words that EVERYONE puts on their resumes to make them sparkle. I want diamonds people, not glitter.
2. Your resume is much easier to read/print/pass along to the hiring manager if you attach it as a PDF file or a word document instead of embedding it in the email.

3. If the job posting specifically states that the job requires that you have nights and weekend availability, please do not submit an application if you do not have those hours available.

4. If the posting specifically states that you email your resume and cover letter to an email address required, please do not respond to the email:

       "I do not wish to submit my resume via email, I'd much rather come in and apply in person and give you my resume then, please contact me as to when and where this would be most convenient, and I'll try to work it into my schedule"

Please remember that you are applying for a job to work for me, not the other way around, and if you cannot follow simple instructions as to how to apply to the job, I'm guessing you will not follow instructions when it comes to actually doing the job (and I will not respond to your email, nor will I forward this message on).

5. Please do not use fancy fonts, this will not make your resume stand out in a good way; it will just make it annoying and hard to read.

6. Please keep your resume to one page, two only if you are including a cover page or references. I don't need to know about jobs you had 10 years ago on your resume. I do not appreciate 5 page resumes.

7. If your resume is going to have an "Objective" section, please make sure it applies to the job you are applying for. If you are applying for a job as a Part-Time Car Rental Counter Agent, it doesn't make sense for your objective section to say you are looking for a "Full-Time Child Care Provider" position.
Helpful Interview Hints:
Over time I have come across a few things that I think might be helpful for those out in the job market. Just remember you start getting judged when you turn in your resume, not just when your interview is scheduled to start.

Make sure you dress appropriately, first impressions are important and if you look like a slob then your potential employers are going to assume that you are not serious about the job you are applying for. Here are a few fashion faux pas...

1. Sneakers (especially brightly colored keds that would be more appropriate roaming the grounds of a High School Musical) are not professional work wear, leave them at home.

2. Jeans are too casual for an interview for an office position.

3. Sandals are not appropriate office shoes (and we're talking beachy sandals, not dressy ones)

4. Overbearing perfume/cologne is not appreciated, it makes me want to vomit. Just be clean because I'm pretty sure that body odor would technically be worse.

5. Brush your hair. Just because Justin Bieber looks "cute" with shaggy hair doesn't mean that you do.

Make sure you are prepared for the interview

1. Punctuality is important, know where you are going and how to get there. You shouldn't have to call the office where you interview is being held MULTIPLE times to confirm your interview time (unless it has been rescheduled MULTIPLE times).

2. Leave your starting point with enough time to get there, and a couple of minutes to spare in case you miss your exit.  Google Map your destination so you don't get lost if you are unfamiliar with the area you are going to.

3. If you can't drive/walk/bicycle etc yourself to the interview and have to bring a friend, it is not appropriate to bring them into the office with you and have them hang out in the lobby for moral support. They take up valuable space that an actual customer could use. Make them wait in the car or go run an errand, but you don't need to use the buddy system when it comes to job interviews. Trust me, it just makes you look pathetic.

4. While we're on the subject of pathetic... Don't kiss my ass. I'm not going to put in a good word for you just because you are nice to me. Don't fail on the above mentioned items and I'll be much more impressed.

Writer's Block

I want to write, I need to write, I feel the itch in my fingertips and the inspiration begging to be unleashed… however, I’m blocked.I don’t know what to write about, I don’t have a single topic to discuss, or maybe I have too many to pinpoint into a singular post.

I don’t have any crazy stories about ridiculous encounters with people who are so stupid they couldn’t solve a Rubik’s cube if it were all one color (I read that online somewhere and LOVED the quote, I’m just not sure where it came from, if you know I'd give them all the credit for it)

I could write about my birthday month shenanigans, you only turn 30 once after all… well biologically anyway, I think I might turn 30 at least 5 more times.I’ve celebrated by having a pizza party at a friend’s house, going to Vegas with the family (mom’s side), celebrated with a barbeque with friends and my dad’s side of the family, and will be going to LA this weekend to celebrate again with my cousin who I’ve just recently became reacquainted with through the wonders of facebook.

I supposed I could take a dark turn and talk about how my great grandmother is dying and I don’t think I’ll get to see her again before her spirit leaves her body to join family members that have gone before her.How if I can be half of the woman she was, I think I’ll be doing okay.She’s 101 years old and still mentally proficient; she’s surrounded by children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren who adore her.The last time I went to visit her she was telling my dad and I about her first speeding ticket…at 80 years old!She can still tell a story that will make you laugh until you cry, it’s incredibly sad that her body is finished before the rest of her is.

I can write about how creatively blocked I feel when it comes to writing my novel that I’ve only been working on since 2008 and I’m only 60 pages into it. Its a story about love and how it doesn't matter how old or young you are, it makes you crazy... in this case it will be crazy in a good way, but part of me feels like its going in a direction that would rip off any Nora Roberts, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Danielle Steele novel I've ever read... plus is pulls so much from my real life (in the most rose colored glasses sort of way) that part of me wants to wait for something interesting to happen to keep writing and part of me says SHUT IT DOWN its too much of a fantasy diary and even though I've changed the names and events people are going to recognize themselves in it.

There are always my baking adventures and my drives up and down the Coast that I could also photo-document the journeys. I love being in the kitchen and decorating cupcakes, I have no formal training, but some really cool tools that make me look like I have way more skills than I actually possess, I could say the same about my awesome camera and how its nearly impossible to take a bad picture with it.

But none of it bites; none of it inspires me to write paragraph after paragraph, none make me want to bare my soul in a very public manner on any of those topics.

Nothing seems to be gripping my heart and mind.

Where is my muse damn it?It’s not hiding in the bottom of my Coors Light, and it’s not starring in either of the Netflix movies I’ve watched tonight… It isn’t hiding in my camera or in my markers or glue sticks… Maybe my muse has concealed herself in my guitar, I haven’t picked her up in a few days and my calluses are going away, which just means it will be even harder to try to learn to play.

Perhaps I need to stop looking for outside influences to open the flood gates to my creativity.Maybe my muse lies in wait inside me; inside my heart, inside my mind, inside my guts.Maybe I need to stop waiting for her to come to me and just open myself up to inspiration.

Monday, July 18, 2011

My Wish List

I have this same article/paper/note on Facebook, so if you've read it there, this is just a repeat, but I feel like its important enough to post it here as well.  This goes along with my strong opinions more than customer service shenanigans, but its all part of the adventure.

I was reading an article in cosmopolitan magazine online this afternoon and came across an article about a “shocking” and potentially dangerous new beauty trend…anal bleaching ( At first I just cringed at the thought of it then continued to read the article. This is something real women are doing, not just porn stars and the wacky Hollywood types. It made me sad that women are so insecure about their hind quarters that they have their ass cracks waxed then literally bleached so they have no skin discoloration on their anuses. This is real!!! That with porn becoming more mainstream than ever that XXX movies are starting to dictate what America’s standard of beauty is and what “normal sex” is. I thought the idea of bedazzling your vagina was creepy enough, and I’ve never had a Brazilian wax because frankly, the idea of allowing someone to put hot wax on my lady bits makes me cringe (I’m totally okay with waxing my eyebrows to that perfect arch though), that being said, I’m pretty sure I can single handily keep Gillette in business with the amount of razors I go through to keep everything neat and tidy (just a little lady-scaping, I don’t try to look like my 12 year old self, razor burn sucks and those little bumps you get from shaving itch too bad) and between my arms, under arms, and legs its quite the ordeal.

Now, I’m not one of those women who get all bent out of shape over adult films. They can be entertaining, but I don’t think they should ever be taken seriously as a model for real life. I think the allure of porn is in the fantasy. When you start trying to create your real life around a fictional world you’re bound to run into problems. I think as women we create so many of these problems for ourselves… We forget that the best thing about having a fantasy is in the dream. I’m beginning to think that women are using too much logic when looking at porn stars as role models for being beautiful in real life… This is the best thought I can come up with right now, but it makes a lot of sense to me. I think women are thinking

“Men enjoy watching these women having sex in ridiculous places and situations, they think these women are beautiful and desirable, the things they do and how they look turn men on, therefore I need to be like these women.”

Except in real life??? In my experience I have never been intimate with a man who complained about my legs being too hairy, or my skin too discolored (not that I allow access to my “backdoor” region anyway, no judgment on women who do, it’s just not something I’m comfortable with), or even having too much of a “fur bikini.” For the most part the men I’ve been with have been happy enough to be having sex. Who knows maybe they talk to their friends or they write in their secret boy-diaries about it, but honestly? I don’t think they care. I think they get that porn isn’t real and that it’s really just for fun. It’s not the guidelines for the life they want to live for real… Sure a little role-playing fantasy sex might be great sometimes, but I don’t think they expect that kind of sex and bodies all the time.

That’s the back story to my wish list… This is what I want for all the women of the world.

I want girls to grow up encouraged to be whatever they want to be. I want them to be loved for WHO they are, not what the look like, what their last name is, what side of the tracks they grew up on. I want girls to be able to truly be friends with each other without the competition for men and jobs and every other silly thing we feel the need to compete for. When we get dressed up, I want us to be able to do it because it makes US feel good and not because of what someone else’s opinion might be.

I want our self esteem to be based on how smart and independent we are and not solely on how pretty we are and how easy it is for us to catch a mate.

I don’t want pretty and smart to be mutually exclusive. Reading is sexy; being smart lasts forever, but pretty often fades as time goes on… Although my great-grandmother is 101 years old and I still think she’s beautiful, but she’s also a good person, and I think that reflects in someone’s eyes and how they carry themselves. I could also be partial because she’s family, but I don’t think I am. Girls take care of your bodies and your bodies will take care of you.

I want women to truly be treated as equals to men on an intellectual level. I’m not going to get into physical equalities, because let’s face it we were genetically engineered to do different things. We can talk about physical equalities when a man can carry a baby to term. We think differently but that doesn’t make one better than the other, it just makes us different. You learn more from people who have different thought processes than you do from people who are completely like-minded anyway.

I want girls to be able to go for a walk at night and not be scared that someone might attack her for just being there. I want girls in college to be able to go to a party and have fun without having to worry about getting drugged if she doesn’t watch her drink like a hawk….and then get blamed for the roofie because she was too pretty, too flirtatious, too drunk, too whatever. When did flirting become a crime or an invitation for being taken advantage of?

I want women to be able to love freely without being worried about showing too much emotion. Why is having feelings and expressing them considered a weakness or crazy? Why is it so horrible to cry when you feel the need to? It is not always a form of emotional terrorism to shed a tear or two. I feel like on many days I’m an emotional hoarder. I have so many feelings bottled up inside me because it is not cool to express them that one of these days I’m going to explode like a Molotov cocktail of emotion and I’ll get put in a straight jacket and locked in a padded room. That can’t be healthy.

I want girls to be encouraged to be self sufficient. Being able to share responsibility is a great thing, and having someone who WANTS to take care of you is awesome, but having the skills to be able to fend for yourself is as important as any other skills you may acquire over the years. You never know when you might be left on your own. There was a time in my life when someone asked me if I was going to college to get my M.R.S. the person asking it of me didn’t mean any harm by it but I felt incredibly insulted by the question. I couldn’t believe that someone thought the only reason a girl would go to college would be to meet her future husband, and that getting a degree wouldn’t really have value otherwise. Well, I graduated from California Polytechnic University at San Luis Obispo with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Business Administration and concentration in Marketing… I still haven’t obtained that elusive M.R.S. but I don’t think that I’m any less of a woman because I don’t have a husband or children (and I don’t think any less of the women who are married with children, I just haven’t found that person I want to spend my life with who also wants to spend their life with me).

I want girls to grow up being taught that true beauty lies in kindness, generosity, being respectful and demanding respect for yourself, an education, taking responsibility for one’s actions, and independence. That they don’t have to fit some cookie cutter mold that Hollywood or Mattel decides to sell us as an ideal. Barbies are fun and pretty, but they are just as much of a toy as stuffed animals, and actresses and actors can be beautiful on screen, but there is a lot of makeup and air brushing that prevents them from looking like an average person you’d find in your local grocery store. I think real role models for girls should be teachers, doctors, scientists, authors, people who have made real accomplishments, not people who make their living by having the talent to read lines that other people have given them and being able to look good doing it. I don’t completely disrespect the entertainment industry. I just think that we place too much value on things that aren’t real.

I want real women, to become the real beauties of the world. I’m tired of being told the only way to be beautiful and loved is to be plastic. I’m pretty sure that even though it sells magazines by the ton, it’s a lie.

I want us women to look at men differently as well. A man doesn’t have to look like Jake Gyllenhaal or Bradley Cooper to be attractive (and I picked my two favorites as examples), the men I’ve loved most haven’t really fit my physical type at all, but they fit everything else so much better. The men I’ve fallen the hardest for are the ones that make me laugh, the ones who make me feel safe and comfortable, the ones who make me feel the prettiest girl in the room even when I don’t have any makeup on and I’m wearing my gym clothes. The men I’ve loved the most have encouraged me to live life unfiltered and let me be me when I’m around them. They’ve challenged me to learn new things, pushed me farther than I would have ever pushed myself, and I’m a better person for it. The men that I’ve merely been physically attracted to have exited my life just as swiftly as they entered without even leaving a scratch on the surface of my heart and the ones that I've loved will always have their own corner of my soul (whether I like it or not). I want everyone to be able to feel the joy of just snuggling on the couch with that someone watching something incredibly stupid on Comedy Central (or whatever channel tickles your fancy) and just be happy because you’re together…

So that’s my wish list. It might be a little sappy and emotional and all those other words so often used to describe women’s feelings, and it is all of those things. Feelings are great things to have, and I’m glad that I had the opportunity to share them.