3.29.2002

I think the interview went well. Everyone I met seemed very nice and good at what they do and they seemed to like me. The pay isn't great and for the moment, it would be part-time, but we're getting by on less than part-time wages now so that's less of a concern than you'd think. Clearly this won't be the year of the big fancy car or house on the beach. As if there was ever to be such a year. Ha!

3.28.2002

The phone finally rang. I had a phone interview yesterday and an in person meeting is scheduled for tomorrow. Now that there's potentially another option I'm starting to get really upset about what's gone on here. I see my dwindling bank account and hear the echoes of promises that have yet to be filled and I'm getting more and more frustrated. I just want some resolution. And back pay for the month. Not a million dollars or a fancy car, but the small amount that I've earned by being here all month, hoping.

I can't stop admiring my redesign. Them shore is purty colors!

Say it's cold in your office. Do you use your space heater or simply crank the heat up to 80 fucking degrees and leave it that high until a warm day happens, then let all your co-workers swelter because you were cold last week? Here's a hint: I'm sweltering.

Today's minor redesign was brought to you by the miracle of style sheets.

Stumbled onto the webpage for Rainie Roo's brother and sister Rocky and Lexie, who live together in LA. It kinda makes me wish we'd adopted two of them. But not really. But kinda.

I was talking about Lyle Lovett and how I like his hair when I realized that the reason I think his hair is spiffy is because the one man I truly loved had similar hair. Proof that I was once a charming straight girl: lies here. For the record, he dumped me because he was pretty sure that I wanted to date girls. That, and he had a different girl he wanted to date, too.

3.27.2002

My guess is that the entire company is suffering from Group PMS. The stress of hardly being paid with all the uncertainty that's surrounded us all month has gotten to all of us, both individually and as a group. I'm ready to have this whole thing settled and some sort of steady, medium-sized income coming in. I used to think I'd write a book about the Glory Days at Beyond (and God, were they fun. Something about burning $24 million a quarter pretty much ensures that someone is having a good time) but now I think my current company will get the honors.

We went to watch one of our clients sing the national anthem at an NHL game but when we got to the TV, we discovered that one of the parting gifts that someone took on their way out of here was the access card to the DirecTv. How nice. All I got was all the pens I could carry.

In other news, I did finally get a phone call about a job. I also had a phone interview, which I think went well. It sounds pretty promising but I'm trying not to get my hopes up.

Maybe I'm too nice.
I've always been pretty polite to people's faces. When the kids in school made fun of me (I was too fat, too adopted, dressed weird, too whatever for them most of the time) I tried to just ignore it and bitch about them later. That's been my MO for much of my life, it's way easier than actually saying "hey! That was really shitty, why did you do that?" Lately that's changed some but now that things at work have been so stressful and weird, I'm less and less capable of standing up for myself. Today alone, that's meant not questioning it when I was told that despite what I'd been told earlier, it's now not likely that I'll get back pay and not borrowing a car to drive 4 blocks for lunch. I don't think I can keep my mouth shut for much longer.

Not much going on today. I'm very ready for Amy and I's upcoming adventure to Reno/Squaw and for all this work nonsense to be settled. We've decided to refinance our house and roll our debt into it. Yes, the payments will go up but our credit card and Evil Car Loan payments will vanish so it's more than a fair trade. Wish us luck!

3.26.2002

I have Red tourette's!

I'm so jazzed, giddy, stoked, fucking happy that I made Red that I keep writing in all caps. WOOO HOOO I MADE RED!!!! WOODIDDLY HOODIDDLY!

I have to write a bio about myself essentially selling me to the folks who are handing out pesos at the new compay. So far, I have this:
"Liz Dow-tay! has a keen sense for picking failing dot-com companies shortly before they go under."

I MADE RED!!!

I heard this morning that I'm now a (very proud and relieved) member of the NCWHL's Red Division. It looks like most of my friends moved up, too so it should be really fabulous.

I'm so excited!
And I just can't hide it!
I'm about to lose control and I think I like it!
Whoo-whee!

This is the first time in my life where I haven't been the worst at a sport. A huge accomplishment for someone who was sitting on the couch 2 years ago dreaming of having energy (and a few toned muscles).

Thanks (and props) to everyone who supported me in this (scaling Mt. Everest would have been no less a feat), cheering from the bench as I tried out, sending good wishes my way and in general being supportive of me in this. It means a lot to me that you were, and continue to be, there, and that nobody has told me I can't do it.

Because I did! WOO HOO!!!!!

3.25.2002

"If you're never an idiot, you're probably not trying"
My favorite co-worker

My final Red Division tryout was last night. I was less nervous than last week, but still so ready to have it over with. I'm told that I didn't look as good as I did last week, but I did have a little bit more fun. Because there are 44 new players, most of them pretty new, I doubt that I'll be kept in Green, my current division, but I'd like to move up because I have the skillz, not because there isn't room in the lower division. Which, now that I think of it, is sort of the same thing, told two different ways.

Birdie, the skinny little 13 year old beagle who has visited us before, came back for a weeklong visit at Camp Dow-tay! while her parents are out of town. Since she was last with us, she has:
  • Put on enough weight that I thought she was Zeus
  • Discovered the delightful sound of her own bark -- at all hours of the day and night
  • Become quite feisty and willing to bite. If she had teeth, this would be a real problem.
She was cold, so I grabbed the silly sweater Andrea had bought on sale to put on her. All went well until I went to put her arm in, when she started screaming, then went for me with her mouth full o' gums. I made another two attempts to remove the sweater from her neck, figuring if she's going to be like that, she can just be cold, but those were also met with screams and bites so Birdie is now sporting a doggie ascot around her neck.

I gave Rainie and Zeus a bath yesterday. Rainie's entire winter coat came off afterwards, she's now as streamlined as her sister Pumpkin. Zeus got brushed too, coming around for seconds because he's such an attention hound but since he has so little hair, I just pretended.

My parents are coming in a week so I've started the Spring Cleaning that their arrival requires. Who would have thought that the back of the front door could be so gross? As the height of our dogs has increased, so has the height of the grime. I guess they spend their days leaning against the door?

When I got an email from my brother with the subject line "Flo Control," I figured that it had something to do with Aunt Flo and was skeptical, but Flo Control is actually a hilarious, inventive way to prevent your kitty from dragging in presents of live or dead animals.

3.22.2002

The phrase "to be honest" is to me, the sign of a bullshitter. If you have to say it a lot (more than once a week) it's time to ask yourself why you're saying it so much. Seriously, it implies that the rest of the time, you're not honest, which makes me wonder why I should beleive you now. I say this because I've been listening to one of my co-workers tell other employees who aren't here today, who haven't been here working since the Really Bad Times starting, all about the exciting, upcoming your-skills-for-continued-employment plus 500,000 pesos deal.

I have to ask if it's worth bringing along people who have been watching Sally Jesse Raphael for a month when the rest of us have been here, taking phone calls from the press, from liquidators, from customers, pretending as if everything was okay. Maybe I'm just bitter because my group has continued to work our asses off while these other folks are chillin, hard-core, old school style. Yes, I think that's it.

I was driving my fine co-worker to the airport yesterday. We're sitting in traffic with the windows down next to a car that also has the windows down. The woman next to us was on the phone yelling at whoever it was that she was out here picking up (whatever bullshit item) when there was no fucking gas in the car. I said she had a bad case of the NFG's. No Fucking Gas.

Looks like good things are happening. Not like 'here's a free $1 million for your trouble' good but 'here's a paycheck and back pay for the month of March oh and by the way meet your new boss' good. Which at this point may as well be $1 million. My boss was joking with a friend that we were all getting $500K up front and I almost wept from laughing so hard. Yeah, 500,000 pesos maybe.

But of course! Ascot=queer!

Stolen from b-may, the following quote from Richard Nixon, speaking about All in the Family.

"Archie is sitting here with his hippie son-in-law, married to the screwball daughter. . . . The son-in-law apparently goes both ways." (what?)
He is "obviously queer. He wears an ascot, and so forth."

A strong rebuttal to this comment from Erik, who knows all things ascot (and fez):
Didn't he realize that mannix wore an ascot, too? There is no one more manly than mannix.

Well said, my friend.

Overheard: "well, I was going to go with loose cannon, but you can call him Satan if you like."

3.21.2002

Death is a weird thing. At first people are quick to comfort you, I guess because immediately afterwards, the bereaved often looks horrible and cries a lot, so only the most inconsiderate, cold-hearted, socially inept folks make no attempt to say anything of comfort. As time goes on, people start to 'worry' about you, as if somehow the passage of one month or two means that you should stop crying and looking terrible. Kind-hearted people suggest medication or therapy and while I appreciated the thought behind it, I will maintain that grief is like a cold. You just have to suffer through it. To medicate it would do nothing to alleviate the great pain I felt, it would only make it easier for others to be around me. So no, I did not medicated. I wept and wept, played a lot of hockey and wept some more.

These days, it's a bit easier. Not because the pain is any less, it's just less immediate. Remembering that Alice is gone is not the first thing I am hit with each morning, it's not the same shock all over again. And now, just when I am ready to talk about her, people dance around the topic of Alice (for you, my loyal three readers, substitue Alice for anything appropriate in your own life and you'll see that I'm guilty of it to, of the akward half-step in conversation when someone refers to their dead relative in the present tense, of the weird silence that comes with any mention of the deceased's name, of all that shit. I think it's inevitable.).

I don't know that this can be changed, I think it's just human nature but it sucks. Death sucks. So for all of my friends who have lost people, know that I'm here to listen to your stories and will talk about them in any tense that you'd like.

Looking at these cute 3 week old puppies, I was shocked to see two lemon and white pups in the mix. I wonder if Alice looked like that as a pup (no, she was cuter, I'm sure ;-)) and God, I miss her so much. Losing her has utterly changed me, my heart still hurts so much without her. I finally smiled at the other dogs 2 weeks ago, but that doesn't mean I'm 'over' her. I'll never be over her. She was my boobaloo, nobody else could ever be what she was to me.

At the vet's office, they told me that they miss her too.

3.20.2002

From after I left a chat room with my fine co-workers:
Liz2D2 has left the room.

Over the last few weeks there's been a steadily rising amount of people here to talk about buying the company. Today's round of folks has a name that sounds like an antibiotic cream. One of the guys came busting out of the conference room a few minutes ago saying "YOU SUCK" into his cell phone. He is now standing right outside my cube, telling someone else about how he's checking out our company and how it's all set except for closing the deal. He's walking up and down the aisle outside my cube telling whoever it is what he perceives as our strong and weak suits, as if my team can't hear and isn't all 10 feet away from him. The good news, he got Carl's update and George's stuff seems to be working. Whoever they are.

This is, by far, the most surreal moment I've ever experienced at work.

Clearly, we are non-entities to this man.

Exciting things continue to happen at work. Yes, I'm still going because, if for nothing else, it's something to do besides being at home and getting depressed about not getting calls from people who want to hire me. They changed the locks last week and not everyone has a new key (our poor janitor! Sorry about that!). They've paid out vacation for the full time folks and essentially have terminated them all. Some are now collecting unemployment and yet, my group is still here, taking care of our customers. I'm proud to say that there has been no interruption in service and when they do call, we answer the phone because, yes, we are here.

Now that we're down to a teeny tiny staff, potential aquirers are much more interested in us. The price has gone way down, basically we'll sell it for a dollar to a company who will take us all in as employees, keep our customers intact and give us back pay for the month. As a contractor, this is dicey for me, but my benevolent boss has made it clear that my ass is part of the package, so if that works out, I'll still be employed. I'd even get vacation and shit like that!

The thing is, I like this company and the spiffy product we make. I like the folks I work with and I have no desire to work somewhere else unless they're there too. I'll go wherever I'm asked (though not North Carolina, as I was asked to yesterday. Sorry, Susan and Bill!) as long as it means a steady paycheck.

Someday, I'll write about all of this because there are many many more juicy details that I'd love to share but for now, I'm here and hope one day to be paid.

Today, Rainie loves me again.

3.19.2002

So my most excellent goalie, Gerald and his lovely wife Heather innocently brought a helium balloon to the big tryout and dinner on Sunday. I brought the balloon home, as you would, and carried it into the house. Zeus and Gus ignored it, being men of the world they have seen many a balloon and know that they are not things to be feared. However, Rainie, being still relatively new to the world, had not seen a balloon and was utterly frightened of it. We left it out on the dining room table (which for once, is actually IN the dining room. But that is another, far less interesting story...) Rainie avoided the balloon at all costs, running through the room at full speed, all the while eyeing the Evil Balloon.

After a bit, she settled down and we sort of forgot about it and went to bed. After a little while, we realized that Rainie was out there growling and barking at the balloon so Andrea got up and moved it to a Safe Location so the puppy could get some sleep. That was the first night.

Last night, Rainie was in the Safe Location (aka the office) with us and wouldn't leave. So Andrea snagged the balloon and held it aloft, moving in the Roo's direction. She quickly exited the room.

Later that same night, I clipped the balloon onto Zeus' collar. He didn't care but Roo kept a careful distance. I then clipped it to the Roo's collar. Here's where I'm a bad mommy. Instantly, her tail went down between her legs and she just sulked around. I took it off right away but the damage was done. She wouldn't talk to me for the rest of the evening, feigning interest in treats and ice cubes. This morning, she still wasn't talking to me, choosing instead to remain curled up in her bed in front of the heating vent. That's it, she ignored me because she was trying to stay warm. Sure, that's it.

I'm a bad mommy.

3.18.2002

For the record, I'd much rather have someone forget/ignore my birthday than send a gift that says, in essence, fuck off. I won't go into the story here, protecting someone and a situation that I'm not sure why I feel obligated to, I guess out of respect, but I will say that sometimes, no gift/recognition is better than being hurt.

Apparently, I am not the only person (besides AmyFritz) who finds Hot Pot City a fabulous and interesting place to eat where you COOK YOUR OWN MEAT. How can you beat that?

Actually, you can.

Saturday, after the Waddle and before our plane was due to take off, Dena took us first to see the hookers on Van Buren Ave (some were sitting on newspapers, something that indicates to me that there was some type of leakage going on, but really, I didn't want to know) then in a moment of great inspiration, to the Park 'n Swap. As soon as she called that Walt, who was dropping off the pooped puppers at home, he was on his way in the banana mobile to join us. I knew that would get him! Not only did this magical place of wonder reside next to a dog track, it featured millions of Things to see and buy (I bought several bandannas to sport under my hockey helmet, including a killer one with 8 balls on it) and the best part -- a coverted golf cart that drove around looking for thirsty people to dispense beer from a tap and coke. That was heaven, when the cart rolled toward me offering two of my favorite beverages as I looked at Things and flew in the face of open container laws.

I think it was the highlight of my trip.

I'm back! Vegas was big fun, sort of. I think all of our money woes made us much more conservative about gambling, so we didn't really do much of it, opting instead for browsing at the Forum shops and looking at the things they had to offer there. Phoenix was fabulous, very dry and not so good for our skin, but we had a great time. Friday morning we got up, intending to go horseback riding with our friend, but they didn't call till they were walking out the door so clearly, we weren't going to get our butts in gear to go with them. Instead we laid around our fine hotel room watching a made for TV movie that was thoughtfully playing without (sans) commercials on HBO, then started walking to the Waffle House (casa de Waffle) for a fine breakfast. On the way, we saw a nice man handing out $5 sunglasses so I bought the most disco pair he had. Our breakfast was great then we headed across the street to the mall for more browsing where I scored a good deal on some shoes. Our other friend was running late so decided to see a movie, something we have no time to do at home.

I had such a good day, we decided it was my birthday that day. We had a sort of uncomfortable dinner that night (there was some rescue-related drama going on that clouded the evening) and headed to the dog park. There, we saw Elliemama, our Rainie Roo's mother, as well as her alleged father Ralph, who was beaten in the puppy mill and is very very shy. He's a sweet boy who eventually let me talk to him.

Yesterday was actually my birthday but it was clouded by great nervousness about my Red division tryout (placement session) for the women's league. We got to the rink over an hour early and I was able to skate a bit during the public session, which was clogged with a kid's birthday party attendees, one of whom shouted "EEEEK! A hockey player!" each time I went by her. My brother, Lisa, cousin Ann, her son Thomas with special guest, her other son Jim, who is on a 2 day leave from his duties in Zimbabwe and headed back overseas today, Andrea, my goalie Gerald and his wife Heather, all came out to cheer for me. Thanks to their enthusiasm, the judges did not miss the two goals I had.

Afterwards, one of the judges told me I looked good out there and that they were amazed by my fan club. I was too.

We all went out for dinner, where I was rendered speechless and teary-eyed by my brother's gift. I was finishing my dinner, minding my own business, when I see this thing in front of my face. It was the waiter, holding an Easton Synergy hockey stick -- the most revolutionary thing to happen to hockey sticks in years and something I'd drooled over for months, touching it every time I see one in a store, talking endlessly about how cool they are and how I had no real reason to have one. When I realized what it was, I was absolutely speechless and started to cry. It chokes me up even now.

It was a great birthday, thanks to all of my posse for being there last night to cheer me on. I'm hoping that a Red division jersey will be a belated birthday gift that comes toward the middle of next week. I'll wear it proudly and use my most excellent Synergy stick when I play.

3.13.2002

And it's not all gloom and doom at work. Things are changing quite rapidly, and while there's no great influx of cash, there was a small influx of cash to my wallet (which, oh hell yes, will be deposited tonight without delay. Just in case...) and it appears that in exchange for my loyal service, will continue to be a small to moderate influx of cash as time goes on. No, I'm not rich, no I can't really pay all of my expenses this month, but I did get slightly more than what an unemployment check would have been and I get to keep my job. We'll see how it plays out but I'm staying put for the time being.

I'm so ready for our trip. If I could, in good conscience, provide the 3 of you loyal readers with cheesy music to hear on hold, I would.

On the first episode of the new Amazing Race, they go to Rio De Janero. One of the tasks is a choice -- rappel 600 feet down a rock face or ride a gondola to Ipanema beach, where you must find the Girl from Ipanema, who waits for you sporting a fine bikini and sipping on a fruity beverage. I squawked out loud when I saw this, and the photo that they give you to aid your search. I most certainly would have gone for the Girl and ran squawking down the beach screaming "GIRL FROM IPANEMA."

Only one group took this option but it was SO worth it when The Girl handed them their clue, winked and said "Good luck." I watched that part 3 times.

I want to go on the Amazing Race.

Tonight we're going to Vegas and with any luck, tomorrow we'll try our hands (and feet and asses) at indoor skydiving which I'd never heard about until Trevor from O-Town went there on his 'Win a date with O-Town' contest winner. How cool will that be? Not as cool as winning a date with O-Town.

3.12.2002

People hauled away some of the furniture today. There's a last minute power struggle going on but all attempts to gather money to keep us going have failed and there's a small glimmer of a paycheck but nothing concrete. I don't know why I came in today, maybe just to not be sitting at home, stressing. Being here enables my denial, this can't possibly be happening if I'm still talking to customers.

3.11.2002

Hopefully, this will update nicely and my site will be sort of back to normal again.... Or not.

Waiting to hear if the last of the last-ditch efforts to raise money for our company have fallen through. The CEO returned from a meeting with People Who Decide These Things and headed right to his office, where he's now conferring with some higher-ups. If it was good news, I would think there would have been a Happy Dance.

In just two days, we're heading to Phoenix (via and Viva! Las Vegas) for the AZBHR Waddle of the Green. I'm so ready to get out of town, to let someone else handle the rescue work for 3 days and to see some of Rainie Roo's littermates (aka the Roo-lets) and her beautiful basset Mama, Ellie. Here we come, Money Fairy or not!

Okay, I'm back! After an alleged upgrade from my web hosting company put my site out of commission for over two days, I switched to a new provider late on Friday.

Weekend scare
Yesterday we too the dogs to the dog park, where they all had a fine time. Rainie (14 months old) laid down after wagging her tail at every dog to come in the door. Zeus pissed on everything and managed to snag 1/2 a sandwich and Gus played his own version of fetch, where he gets the ball, then comes running back, only to run around you. They were all pooped on the way home.

Bouyant by our Big Fun, Andrea let Gus off his leash in the front yard. This is something we've done with all of our dogs, Alice I could let go 1/2 block away and she wouldn't stray, Zeus and Rainie are fine in the yard, we assumed Gus would be too.

We were wrong.

Gus nosed the gate open (thanks to my infrequent groundskeeping efforts, it didn't close all the way) and took off, trotting down the street. Andrea took off after him and Zeus tried to also. I left the front door wide open, grabbed Rainie and Zeus and ran to the car. I didn't even put my seatbelt on. Andrea saw that he had gone right down San Carlos (a VERY busy street) so I headed that way. For once, the light at the corner was with me and soon, I saw him, trotting down the sidewalk. I pulled over like the cops do, blocking him in. I flew out of the car, shouting at him to stop and thank god, he did.

At this point, my legs are shaking so hard that I wonder how I'm still standing up and my voice has broken in a way I've never heard before. The little fucker is there wagging his silly stump of a tail at me as Andrea comes up. We're mad, we're relieved and we're all scared to death as Gus and Andrea pile into the car.

Until that moment, I had no idea how much the big galoot means to me. I'd tried to pretend that I was detached from him, from the other two, that without Alice, they don't touch my soul in the profound way that she did. And they don't, that's a place that's only hers. But this ragtag pack of punks that make up our family touches me too.

3.07.2002

Need a reminder that you're wonderful and beautiful? The Automatic Flatterer will hook you up!

From the NCWHL treasurer:
"If this is not what you expected, please change your expectations. :-)"

Yeah!

A stunningly accurate and sad account of what rescue is really like.

3.06.2002

I am astounded at the number of vultures who turn to the trusted news source, fucked business (not saying the real name, lest I turn up on searches for it) for leads. We've had more calls than I care to mention from people who want to buy our equipment (which, you may notice, I am using at this very moment, so it is NOT for sale) and now from customers. It sucks ass.

There is a bright spot, the money fairy seems to be circling the building and there may be a deux ex machina coming our way. But, not fond of touching live poultry, I am not couting my chickens before they hatch.

We are, however, informing the vultures that our shit is not for sale and that the place where they got their information is akin to the National Enquirer, which of course is America's Trusted News Source.

Though my being gay isn't too much of an issue for most people in my life (and really, why would it be? It's not nearly as exciting as anything related to Enron or god forbid midget sex), for a select few, it is. One relative has not spoken to me since I first brought Andrea home for the holidays, despite repeated attempts on my part to establish contact. So I gave up, I don't need that kind of crap in my life.

Recently, this relative's child wrote a book. This relative has the resources to have it published, and it's for sale on Amazon. My mom wanted me to buy a copy, then email the child's father and tell him I'd done so.

I tried to ignore her request but she pushed it today, so finally I pointed out that I haven't heard from this relative in years, that I know he's homophobic (which again, is ridiculous. Gay people are not nearly as scary as other phobia subjects like heights, the outdoors and elevators, all of which can easily kill you) and that I'm not going to put forth any effort towards him. Mom was upset but unlike in the past when I haven't done what she wanted (where she usually gets this utterly devastated tone of voice and hangs up), I kept her on the line and explained that I don't need to support someone who has treated me like that. I have nothing against the son, but am deeply hurt by the parents' behavior towards me.

My mom actually listened and while she's not thrilled, she seemed to understand that it's not okay to treat someone like that.

3.05.2002

Saturday I placed our foster dog Sebastian with a new family. I was looking forward to spending some time with just our mismatched crew but no, Linea pointed to a woman holding a leash with a 2 year old beagle attached to it and said 'there's your new foster.' Great.

He's actually a very nice dog but at the moment I'm just not interested in housebreaking yet another dog, bringing him out of his shell or dealing with how damn attached they get to me.

I did turn down a family for him yesterday, the woman hung up on me when I suggested that she wait until her two very small children were a little older. Guess she didn't want to hear that.

I will take this moment to remind you, my 3 faithful readers, that just because we're rescuing dogs, doesn't mean that we're in the business of giving just any yahoo a dog. We're pickier than breeders and we do this because the dogs deserve no less.

Last night marked the first practice of the A-Team, my new hockey team. After a horrible season with the Snow Cones, I decided it was time to branch out and start a team that was focused more on teamwork than on just showing up once a week, playing a shitty game and going home. I tried to choose carefully, basing my player invitations on kindness and a willingness to listen (if you're on a team, it's expected that someone may say something like "hey, play up a little so I can feed you a pass" without getting a response like "FUCK YOU!"). I had no expectations about skill level, just went for the most receptive, nicest people.

And I got lucky! Our team is pretty fast, pretty skilled and are all very nice. We scored a great coach, who all of the players listened to and respected. She worked us quite hard and was very impressed at the skill level.

Just after everyone suited up, I looked around and thought "I made this happen." Then I looked up again and there was my friend Nadine and her nice man Bob, who wants to get back into skating again after a 12 year lapse. They watched part of the practice, it was really cool to have friends there watching something I'd put together. Thanks for sticking around!

Here's to a kick-ass first season for the A-Team!

3.04.2002

Here I am, at work. Many of my esteemed co-workers are here with me, though there is no assurance that there's even a chance in hell that we'll be paid for our service. I was feeling optimistic about our survival but I'm at a low moment now.

The job market has changed, salaries keep coming down to the point where I think unemployment pays more than some of these web development gigs. I'm at a crossroads. I don't really want to be a programmer, I don't want to go back to school and without additional skills I'm relegated to jobs that pay less than 1/2 of what I was getting a year ago -- and having to fight for those.

Auction houses are calling the office about selling off our equipment and some of our customers have seen the rumors on fucked co. The shit is hitting the fan and I am starting to get very scared.

Looks like ebay will be helping us pay the mortgage this month.

3.01.2002

Do you hear that sound? That's the sound of my phone not ringing with someone offering me a new job that at least pays the paltry amount I've been paid until this afternoon, when I stop being paid. That's also the sound of my company's phone not ringing with the Money Fairy on the other end of the line. I hate looking for a job. I hate that I keep working for companies where I am looking for a job in short order after arriving.

The good news is that these days, when I'm out of work it's because the company couldn't make a go of it, not because I suck or was an asshole to people. I've finally grasped the value of shutting the hell up.

"Would you spend $4.00 a week to save 1,000 dogs a year?

To get a dog out of a shelter and to be medically checked, spayed/neutered, given vaccines and possibly a dental takes about $200.

Would you be willing to give up one McDonald's value meal a week to save 1,000 dogs a year?

One day each week instead of having that value meal put that $4.00 in a stamped envelope and take your own dog for a nice walk. I don't know about you but I could stand to skip a meal each week and go for a walk with my best friend.

At the end of 4 weeks mail your $16 dollars to a fine local rescue group and start a new envelope. Do this 13 times each year and you will have paid to pull a dog and get it medically checked (spayed/neutered, sprung from the shelter and given vaccinations) and on its way to its forever home.

What did it really cost you ??? You lost about 50 pounds, probably extended your life and got to share 52 hours of great fun with your best friend.

Are you saying that is only one dog ? That's true but are you the only person involved in rescue ?? Could your partner afford to miss a meal and take a walk with you each week? The time together could make your marriage last longer (hopefully that is a good thing).

Invite a different friend to walk with you each week and get them involved (or don't make them walk, just get them to cough up the $4). I don't have any skinny friends so all of my friends could use the walk as well. Tell your friends that going on a walk with your dog will help prolong their life. They are a captive audience on your walk and they can't just leave. Think of all the great rescue stories you could tell them in just one hour. Get that $4.00 from them and get them involved in rescue as well.

The results??? The only thing getting fatter is that envelope filled with cash.

Get your boss involved (I don't suggest that you tell him/her they could lose a few pounds) and tell them for less than one day's worth of parking each month they could save 1,000 dogs. Bosses typically would rather give you money than exercise any day (Maybe you should ask them for $10 each week to lessen their guilt of not exercising).

Just 13 envelopes saves 1,000 dogs each year. For those of you that might want to say that I don't know what I'm talking about... how would you know if you have never tried ?

Larry Essary (with minor edits by yours truly) ~ 1,000 dogs in 2002

I have been instructed not to speak to the press and since I've never mentioned my company name, I can only say that my company is now famous, we are currently featured on the front page of FuckedCompany. I still won't say the name, in case it's all for naught and the money fairy slips a check under our pillow tonight. I do believe in this place, we have a good product and good people.

I hereby crown myself the dot-com harbringer of death.