Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Three things

I have three annoying and/or perplexing things to write about today, but none of them merits its own post. Think of it as three-for-one day.

Certified mail
My buddy, Spesh, who lives in Israel, uses my place his US address. That's all well and good except when UMD decides to send me the final exams for his online course or when I get a certified mail delivery for him. Last week, I got one of those little pink notices the mail carrier leaves when they can't deliver a package. I decided it would be faster to go to the Post Office than to ask for redelivery. At Post Office, the lady informed me that since I'm not Spesh, I can't pick up his certified mail. BUT, if I'm home when they deliver it, I CAN sign for it. Again: I can't pick up the mail at the post office. BUT, if I'm home when they redeliver, I can sign for it and receive it.  The problem is, I'll never be home when they deliver the mail. The lady said, "Will you be home on Saturday?" Um, well, probably. But really, I'm supposed to wait home Saturday so I can sign for Spesh's package--instead of signing for it RIGHT NOW when I am standing in front of you at the post office? Craaazy.

Stomach test
I had occasion to go to the doctor on Monday for a rather unpleasant test. It involved lots of x-rays/scans while I was perched in several awkward positions--sometimes lying down, sometimes standing--on my back, on my belly, on my side, half-propped on my left side and half-propped up on my right side . All while dressed in a flimsy blue paper robe that initially covered my ass, but, after all that twisting around, revealed my not-quite-appropriate for public viewing black underpants. Whoops. At least there were no holes. The reason for this test is that I've been burping excessively (by my previous burping standards) for about a month. The test examined my upper g.i. tract and I had to swallow a lot of a mildly unpleasant tasting and nauseatingly thick substance called barium. Ironically, it caused my stomach to be upset for the rest of the day. Or maybe my stomach upset was caused by the ruthlessly sharp poking the radiologist gave my belly while doing the last set of scans. I was supposed lie on my back, lean slightly to my left and swallow water while he poked me. The pain was so intense, I couldn't drink and instead gasped, "ouch."  He did not apologize or explain what he was doing. I know it's your job, but when you're hurting someone you should 1) warn them, 2) apologize and 3) explain why it's necessary to hurt them (maybe in reverse order). And I wasn't imagining it--I woke up this morning with a tender spot just below my ribs that feels like a bruise. Hopefully, I'll get my test results this week and they will find something very mildly wrong that is easily fixed. No more tests, please.

Last week, I met a young woman who whipped out a piece of paper with the text from one of those "I saw you" adverts in the City Paper. She proclaimed, "This is me!" I read the copy, which described her from the perspective of a man who'd seen her walking through a metro station on her way to work. The last line was something like, "I hope your husband/boyfriend/FWB knows what a catch he has--he's one lucky guy!" While the bulk of the text was a very flattering description of the woman in question, what struck me was the inclusion of "FWB" as a category of man who would be lucky to have her in his life. Has it really come to this? Are we now, upon first meeting (or first sighting) wondering if the object of our affection is engaged in a "friends with benefits" relationship? If a guy approaches me with intent to date, should I now expect him to ask, "So, um, do you have a boyfriend...or a friend with benefits?" Good lord. I thought FWBs were supposed to be quickly disposed of when boyfriend prospects entered the picture and, thus, would not merit an inquiry. If people, in general, are less apt to make time for long-term relationships than in the past (merely a hypothesis), we'll be seeing a lot more FWB relationships. Maybe we're just naming something that's been around for a great while, which people probably didn't expect to persist. I wonder.

Grateful for: patience.

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