I get an A in boarding, if nothing else

By Mir
July 25, 2006

My entire day has been devoted to preparing to pack and actual packing and checking lists (not The List, but other lists) and emailing with the eleventy billion people I’m supposed to be coordinating with and packing some more and eating peanut butter Hershey’s kisses because I bought them to be all NICE and SHARE-Y with Chris during our flight, but she was all “blah blah blah milk allergy” and I was all “you aren’t HUMAN” and now I’m eating them because she doesn’t want any because she’s a robot.


I may be just EVERY SO SLIGHTLY keyed up. From the chocolate. Wait a sec, I have to go pack an apple for Chris….

I dunno, I had everything under control, and then suddenly it was time for Everything. This morning—as my body tried to recover from an afternoon of pushing tar around, and people, the COMMENTS on that last post, there was PHOTOGRAPHIC EVIDENCE of actual DRIVEWAY SEALING and STILL, the filth your minds produce; poor Otto is scarred for life—all I wanted to do was sleep, and Otto was bustling around packing up and getting ready to catch his flight.

In our final hour together, we made the most of our time, discussing classic literature at great length, delving into our feelings for one another and mapping out our future, and expressing ourselves physically.

Or, you know, I buried my head deep in my pillow and muttered something unintelligible that might’ve translated to, “I’m sleeping. Tell me when you’re leaving.” Either way.

(That Otto is one lucky man, I tell you what.)

I wanted to go back to sleep, after he left, but in truth there was much to be done and because I’m flying Cattle Call Airlines, I had to hop onto the computer precisely 24 hours before my flight and print out my boarding pass. If you get in there right away, you get a boarding pass with a big A on it, which means you can be in the first group to board the plane. If you wait until later I don’t really know how many letters there are or how bad it gets, but because I majored in Worst Case Scenario in college I could easily envision the poor suckers who aren’t allowed down the jetway until the plane is pulling back, who then need to chase the airplane down to the runway and execute the secret Cattle Call knock on the door to be let in before take-off.

Once I had my boarding pass, I was too awake to get back to sleep, so I set about laundry and cleaning and admiring my nice black driveway (the DRIVEWAY, people, which was RETOPPED and NOT AT ALL a euphemism) and catching up on all of the email I couldn’t answer this weekend because I was too busy sniffing Otto and whining “can’t we just leave all of that stuff BROKEN?”

One of the things I bought this weekend was gigantic Ziploc bags (to use for the walk), and I discovered that in lieu of a vacuum sealer, simply stuffing items into one of those babies and sitting on it to remove the air works pretty well. Otto and I managed to compress my sleeping bag down to about the size of a dinner plate. So in the next logical extension of that idea, I packed one of the huge Ziplocs to stick my laundry in, on the trip. When it’s time to come home, and I’ve accumulated some stuff from the conference or whatever, I’ll just stick my worn clothes into the Ziploc and compress it down, creating tons of extra room in my suitcase! I am brilliant.

Of course, there’s only so much extra room that I’ll be able to create, given that I am packing approximately two weeks worth of clothing for this 5-day trip. Shut up. I don’t know how warm/cold/fancy/casual it’s going to be. I need to be prepared. I MIGHT NEED EIGHT T-SHIRTS, YOU NEVER KNOW. Also, I totally need all of those shoes. In spite of the fact that my walk-worn toes could frighten small children, at this point.

I ran a few last-minute errands, today, too. Like buying more albino girl sunblock. When I returned, it was time to move the pails from the end of the driveway, and who should come along while I was doing that but the UPS man.

[Brief digression: I may have ordered some things from Amazon, and we all know that when you order anything from Amazon, it’s packed extremely well (if by “extremely well” you mean “in a box as big as your car”). So yesterday, after we sealed the driveway, we went out for dinner, and when we came back, there were two monolithic boxes on my front porch. I couldn’t figure out how the UPS man had gotten them there without touching the driveway or breaking his neck.]

So here’s the UPS man again, pulling up, and giving me… A Look. I immediately launched into an apology about the driveway, and I’m SO SORRY and HOW DID YOU DO IT and he just burst out laughing.

“It’s okay, you’re not the first person to seal your driveway, you know. But, um, those bushes up there by the steps? They’re kind of prickly.”

He handed me my (small, today) box and went on his way. I considered trimming the bushes… but now the driveway is open again, so why bother?

(Otto totally just shook his head at me, reading that. And probably added “trim hedges” to The List for his next visit.)

Anyway, the rest of the day was uneventful. I pulled out everything I own and then packed by elimination; I put things back that I knew I wouldn’t want, then I surveyed what remained. That was still a month’s worth of stuff, so I did a second round of cuts. Eventually I had narrowed it down to only those essential items I would need if I got stuck on Gilligan’s Island or whatever.

I haven’t been to California in thirteen years. I cannot wait to be back. I cannot wait to meet all of these amazing women I’ve only know through the shiny box for so long. I cannot wait to eat my weight in avocadoes and sushi and taqueria fare.

I cannot wait for all of these people to discover what an utter dork I am. I mean, sure, it might sting of humiliation a bit, initially, but then it’ll be a relief. Plus, I may be the only one with 8 t-shirts, so if people dribble hot sauce on their fronts, who do you think they’re gonna be coming to for a spare shirt? Hmmmmm? That’s right.

There are so many of you who won’t be at BlogHer whom I will miss terribly, and I wish I could scoop you all up on my way, feed you peanut butter kisses, and take you with me. I would even take a few t-shirts out of my suitcase to make room for you. THAT is how much I love you all.

When next you hear from me, I’ll be in California. Probably making an ass of myself already. Thank goodness for the internet, so you can hear about it right away.


  1. Melissa

    HAve fun!

  2. Dawn

    I laughed so hard at the Cattle Call paragraph my teenagers came down stairs to see what was wrong with me. I, of course, read it to them and burst out laughing everytime. They laughed too, but my 12 year old said, “I understand it and everything, but why is is funny. Then I heard him tell one of his brothers on the way up the stairs….mom’s laughing at her computer and being old! The nerve. I will not feed him tomorrow. Safe travels to you and enjoy California…and you and Karen W. behave. I want to hear about it from your sites….not the news.

  3. Carmen

    I can’t wait to meet you, Mir. I’ve got a (small) gift for you….

    and I would eat the peanut butter kisses if I was flying with you!

  4. Mary Tsao

    Can’t wait until tomorrow night! And don’t worry, you are not the only one packing enough for a small, well-dressed army.

  5. chris

    I have no gifts for anyone…other than the gift of myself ;-)

    I have some seedless red grapes I brought to share with you on the plane. Mmmmmmm. That is if I have room to bring them because I am packing my two weeks worth of clothes into a carry on bag and my pocketbook is my laptop case packed with all that sort of stuff. I may have to wear the grapes on my head like a festive hat.

    And Mir, trimming the hedge? You just make it too easy.

  6. Lena

    YAY Mir! It’s almost here! I can’t wait to meet you!!

    And I’m bringing 25 tees. All festooned with “Cheeky Lotus” screenprints. Okay…maybe I just wrote it in crayon. Still.

  7. Red

    I wanna goooooooo!!! :( *whine*

  8. TW

    Yay on getting ready. I am getting ready too. Way too much to do. You do know that Cattle Call is experimenting with assigned seats right?

  9. Nothing But Bonfires

    Look you can TOTALLY manage with four t-shirts if you’re willing to scrunch me into a ball and tuck me into a corner next to the remaining four. I don’t even need to bring any luggage of my own! You’ll STILL have enough t-shirts for both of us!

  10. Bob

    Enjoy yourself in Cali. I wish I could be there, if only to watch you having a blast.

  11. ben

    I’ll be pouting over here (behind the unkempt hedges) until you get back. Sitting on a ziploc, no doubt.

    Have fun…

  12. Elleoz

    Have a fun and safe trip Mir! I am sure you will have a great time. And you can NEVER have enough t-shirts.

    Great idea about the XL Ziplock bags. I have been thinking about buying them for our trip to NY next month but now I know that I will. Did you pack all your clothes in them or just included one for the trip home? I use Freezer bags for the babies clothes now, but I’ll need an XXl for my stuff. haha. Thanks for the idea.

  13. Stephanie

    You must be really stressed because I have noticed (gasp!) typos in some of your entries. Albeit very small ones. I have never seen typos in YOUR entries. Have lots of fun and be safe! And relax!

  14. Cele

    sheesh, I’d done the ziplock thingy for my lettuce I’d never thought about it for anything else per se.

    Bon Voyage! :)

  15. Katie

    Do not forget the camera battery charger! That alone will keep you from being a bigger dork than me. And congrats on getting “A” boarding priority! It totally ruins my husband’s day if he gets “C.”

  16. Daisy

    Execute the secret Cattle Call knock as the plane is taxiing down the runway? What a picture! Of course, that would be me, so it’s even funnier.

    Have a GREAT time at Blogher!

  17. Kira

    Oh, enjoy yourself, m’dear. I envy the people who get to hang out with you.

  18. Brenda

    Perfect timing, Mir! Last weekend we set new record high temperatures here in the SF Bay Area. This weekend is supposed to be very mild, in the 70s in the San Jose area.

    Be sure to pack the Tide To Go, and you can leave a couple of t-shirts behind.

  19. Terri

    Have fun! I’m looking forward to the California Dreamin’ posts from Blogher.

  20. InterstellarLass

    I’ll bet Otto put “trimming the hedges” on the list. Bwah ha ha!

    Have a good time! Avocados are yummy. I think I want some guacamole tonight.

  21. Amy-Go

    Have a great time! I mean, it won’t be as much fun as trimming the hedge, but…

    WHAT? Home improvement can be fun! ;)

  22. kate

    Have a great time!

    cant wait to hear all about it!

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