Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Student Loans - Forever to Thee


My dear student loans, forever to thee
All that I ask is that I be free
You’re a pain in my ass, a rock in my shoe
You’re purely the cause of my financial flu
The amount is astonishing, your interest I do loathe
Sometimes it’s amazing that I can still clothe
Took advantage of my youth, now you’re a traitor
Young, na├»ve me thought “I’ll just pay it later”
Now I am grown and lessons have been learned
But in this poor economy, there is little I have earned
The hand has been dealt, to the future I do stare
What is left to do but continue to forbear!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

My Quarter Century

My 25th birthday is fast approaching. Twenty days to be exact.

Turning a quarter of a century is slightly getting  to me... to my very core. It's not a big number, I know. I'm just coming to the realization that I never set any goals for myself by this age. Therefore, I have not achieved anything. Of course, I haven't not achieved anything either. So in conclusion I have achieved not being an underachiever. Well pat me on the back and throw a parade. I think I'll celebrate with the cheapest beer and eat Ramen for dinner... again.

I like to think that if I made decent money I'd be where I want to be. What the hell does that mean? I'd really like to be on a beach somewhere, looking good, and silently judging passers by (shut up, you know you do it). Did I ever really have a dream? I've been searching my memories for interests and hobbies lost in hopes of finding something... a glimmer of talent? I don't think that's the right word.

I know I was a mediocre piano player. I like to blame my piano teacher, Mr. Woodward. He had the voice of Ben Stein, smelled a little funky, and stared at the wall when he spoke. It's safe to assume he was scared of me, a young child.

Sports? Well, I was there. As a short, chubby white girl... I had no hope.

I'm not disappointed in myself. I work hard and I've done whatever it takes to make ends meet. Perhaps it is that never ending desire to please your parents. Well, that desire is a bitch... and  I'm going to kick her ass eventually. Until then, I'll tell myself I'm awesome, hang out with these wacky friends I've made in Charleston, and turn 25... in my classic, ungraceful fashion.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Pumpkin Ramen Overload

Wow, looks like I haven't had much to write about for a month and a half. I suppose that's what happens when you no longer work the graveyard shift. That or I've accepted my loss of faith in the general public.

I've found myself pretty broke and growing tired of Ramen noodles, so in classic Cara fashion... I've picked up yet another job. Of course you did, Cara. Where? You might wonder. Well, let me tell you my friends. I have picked up extra work in Hell... a pumpkin patch. The mother of all pumpkin patches. You know, geared towards children. Bouncy castles and germs galore! Kids are awesome and hilarious. They say the darndest things, I get it. However, it's been bad behavior overload. I should have expected it. Minimum wage will definitely get you kicked in the shins, figuratively and literally. Abused by children and chasing fornicating teenagers out of a corn maze... I don't think I'm going back.

It's about to get busy at my main job this week. I can't wait to avoid my favorite 80 year old volunteer. She keeps trying to set me up with her house guest. In her words...

..."he's some kind of Asian."

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Shopping Cart Crusader

I have a firm belief that we should all be forced to endure the wrath of the general public at some point in our lives. Everyone should spend at least a month working in a restaurant or hotel (or really any job where you just have to take "it"), but especially a grocery store. That's where you're bound to meet all walks of life.

If there is one thing I know to be true, it's that the customer service industry will change a person. It can make you patient, give you tough skin, but most of all it can make you realize what's really important. Humanity. There are some side effects to the industry. It can make every little nuisance cut right to your soul. That's where I come in.

I've had to add to my general outing rules this week.
Restaurants:
- If you can afford to go out to eat, you can afford to tip. If you disagree... sounds like McDonald's is the place for you, along with its inevitable clogged arteries.

Hotels:
- If it sounds like someone is getting the crap beat out of them in the next room... it's called 9-1-1, they're pretty helpful.

Grocery Stores:
- Extreme Couponers: Quit clearing the shelves. I'm pretty sure there is somebody else in the area who would like some mustard.
*New*
- If you must use a shopping cart to haul your groceries around, at least have the decency to return it to one of its many designated areas. One can usually be found within a 15 foot radius.

As Hurricane Irene's VERY outer phalanges grazed Charleston, I made a trip to the store. Daredevil you say? Oh yes, I braved the drizzle. At this particular store I witnessed way too many people preparing for the worst (AKA a gust of wind) and leaving their shopping carts EVERYWHERE. Sure, make the argument that the people working at the store get them. However, there are these things known as cars. They're all over the place, especially in the parking lot... so just leaving your cart behind my vehicle justifies my anger. This could be an overreaction if it was a lone act of jackassery. Oh, but it wasn't. As I looked around at this far too familiar land of buggies, I knew I couldn't stand myself if I didn't do something. I dubbed myself "cart return volunteer" and then "awesome."

Being an experienced veteran of the brutal hospitality industry, you find yourself going out of your way to meet and exceed expectations. This has been drilled into me since my first day at college. Like a knee-jerk reaction, seems I'm going to help even when I'm on the other side. Until the next thing that grinds my gears!

Maybe I should find something more important to preach about...

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Ligers and Mustaches and Cardio Machines, Oh My!

On this blistering Saturday night I am enjoying the breeze of my air conditioning, an incredibly comfortable couch, and getting a little lesson in debt from CNBC. I'm also listening to what I can only assume is the purring of the Hercules of cats. Possibly the mysterious liger? I don't think so. Try my notoriously loud neighbor working on his sweet Honda Civic for the last four hours (SPOILER ALERT: it has a not-so-purpose-serving spoiler). In my attempt to keep my anonymity from the other surrounding renters, I'll keep my mouth shut and live with it.

With a free night and little to do, I can't help but reflect on this past week. The loss of a family member induced a trip home, funeral services, and an impromptu family reunion. Even with an atmosphere looming with unresolved family issues and sadness, I couldn't help but notice how all the men in my life sport excellent mustaches. My own father has had a mustache for my entire life... I'm talking Tom Selleck style. Whether distant cousins, immediate family, or friends of relatives, I believe what is referred to as the "chevron" took the cake when it came to facial hair. I'm pretty sure about 80% of my dad's friends are rocking the "chevron"... since 1976. Keep on truckin' fellas!

Switching gears...

Yesterday night I found myself at the gym on a cardio machine. Hoping to enjoy an interrupt-less workout, I was excited to see few people in the gym. Just as my playlist got me going, that second cousin of the urinal phenomenon reared its ugly head. I counted 9 identical machines and 7 similar to the one I was on, all empty. I suppose I resemble someone who would be of some medical assistance in an emergency because Ms. Mothballs herself decided she needed to be as close to me as possible. I'm just saying... the scent of a stranger's White Rain Hairspray and me jamming to Run DMC's "It's Tricky" are not factors of a successful time in general. If she does it again, I'm giving her a name.

Hmmm, a Christmas movie on television in July? It's only natural that I watch it. Until my next awkward observance...

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

It's a Smelly Scorcher

There is no denying it's hot today. With a heat index of 115 degrees, I wonder why some of these tourists decided it would be a good idea to spend the day walking around downtown Charleston. The best part is when they come into the building where I work and say "it's pretty hot out there." Really? The fact that you are covered in sweat stains and reek didn't tip me off. Please don't talk so close to me. I don't want your stench.

As I was enjoying the air conditioning this morning, I watched one of the infamous tour guides (a brittle, old, British lady) drag herself to a bench. She's so tiny. It's hard to believe she's never broken in half. I mean, you can literally see her bones through her skin...and her feet are actually purple. I hate that I know that. Her group looked concerned with her health as she took about 5 minutes to re-cooperate. My only thought was please don't die in here. It may be morbid or a little insensitive but I'm just saying... I don't want any dead bodies on my watch.

I can really smell the horse crap today...

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Is This Roid Rage?

It's been 11 days since I quit the hotel and well... it's been marvelous sleeping. I will never take that simple act  for granted again. My attitude is great, I have a ton of energy, and my mood is... dare I say chipper?

With some free time now on my hands I've decided to work on getting myself healthy again. There's not a doubt in the world that a year of sleep deprivation did a number on my mind, body, and spirit. So, boot camp it is! Yep, kicking my own ass... but now that I have the time, that's all I want to do. It's also helpful that my body is trained to wake up at any time of the day (literally.any.time). Looks like 5 AM and I will be having a love/hate relationship for the next couple of months!

This week's dilemma:
The workout is at 6 AM outside. Not too hot, so at least I don't have to smell other people in the confines of a mildewy, ring-worm infested gym. Although it's been enjoyable to re-learn what sunlight is, I did not enjoy the mysterious insect bite that left me looking like Popeye's special cousin. My upper right arm was swollen and could be seen through my sleeves. As it began to cut the circulation off to my hand, I thought just maybe I should go see a doctor. I don't like hospitals and I don't like shots, but I sure got the jackpot that day. Thank you hilarious, nameless doctor who shot me up with steroids... I would love to stalk you (in the Facebook sense). So, now I'm on some steroid pills for 10 days because of some insect. Maybe it's in my head or maybe I just didn't realize what kind of energy sleep could give a person... but I could lift a freakin' car. Watch out Iron Man.

Only about .000001% of me is sad about cutting my  interactions with people in half. So, on to another adventure? I not sure that's the word. I think I will be using myself as a new social experiment. I am open to ideas.