Monday, February 28, 2011

Stupid thieves are stupid

I got a phone call from my credit card company on Sunday. Some charge triggered a fraud alert and they called to verify the purchase. $99 to Blizzard for World of Warcraft.

Now I am the first person to admit that my geek genes run deep. The first non-picture book I read as a kid (at age six or seven) was a Star Trek novelization. I've been known to roll a twenty-sided die in my time on this earth. And when I was a tween, I dreamed of bonding with a fire lizard. But I am not a WOWer. Not my charge. Chase closes the account and I'm told I'll get a breakdown of recent charges so I can tell them which ones are bogus.

Two days later a package shows up at my front door. Coffee that I didn't order. I figure I'll deal with it the next day. I forget. Another package is waiting for me when I get home from work. More coffee! Turns out the person who got my CC number is an idiot and didn't realize he needed to change the shipping address. One quick phone call and I have his phone number, email address, and home address.

Coffee and WOW. I eagerly await the shipments of Funyuns and Mountain Dew.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Kids and Rats

Four years ago, my older daughter (we'll call her Heckle), wanted a dog. At the time, I had two kids under the age of five and was pregnant with a third. I didn't want a dog. We got a rat instead.

Rats make great pets. They are smart, they are quiet, and they are brave. That last trait is particularly important for any creature sharing house space with small children. That first rat was a hairless dumbo named Bongie (named by Heckle from a song she heard on Dora, not the habits of my college theatre professors). She was sweet, if ugly. She lived about two years. It took Jeckle, our middle child, a year or so to notice that the cage was empty.

Two years later, we bought two baby rats (female). Because there are no social taboos in rat society (or at least in the pet store aquarium where they are raised with their siblings),the original two were followed in a few short weeks by ten more. They looked just like marzipan pigs. Actually, there were fourteen, but three were stillborn and a fourth went missing. I try not to think too hard about that one. We found homes for most of them, but still have the original females and two males, who were separated the instant I knew which was which.

The males are the friendliest. Maybe it's because they've been handled since they were about an hour old. They fight with each other nearly as much as my human kids do.As I type this, I have a black and white rat hanging out on my forearm. It's pretty cool.

Buy a rat. You'll be happy if you do. Just make sure you buy males.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

I hate answering the phone...

I'm not a fan of the telephone. I'm not sure why. I can talk up a storm in person. But chatting on the phone? Hate it. If the phone rings at work and I don't recognize the number, the chances are good I haven't a clue who's on the other line. There's also a high probability that the person has been routed and rerouted a dozen times before landing at my telephonic doorstep and is angry. This morning, I threw caution to the wind and picked up the phone.

Him: Hello, I need to know the statute of limitations for a civil action in Pennsylvania. Is it two years or three?

Me: Well, it depends, but I can't answer that question because I'm not permitted to provide you legal advice.

Him: It's not legal advice. It's an administrative question.

Me: Yes, it does constitute legal advice.

Him: You're fucking stupid.

Good luck getting the answer to that "administrative question," buddy.