Posts tagged ‘IRL’
One week ago yesterday, I stood — forlorn and teary-eyed — in Sky Harbor’s careworn and ever-so slightly dilapidated Terminal 2, waving a broken-hearted goodbye to my boyfriend as he navigated the labyrinth that is airport security on his way home to Calgary.
It was the first time we had seen each other since his last three-week visit in February, and was likely to be the last time we would see each other until the three-day weekend we have planned for my birthday in October.
Long distance relationships suck.
Sure, there would be the daily phone calls, the late night Vent conversations, the thrice-weekly raids and the double-paladin alting that passes for dates in our lonely, online existence. But after ten days, not as Sarielle and Keaton, but as Michelle and Jef — ten days of cuddling on the couch while watching Firefly on DvD… ten days of contemplating wine but settling on Mountain Dew and Diet Coke … ten days of romantic dinners and deep-fried artichoke hearts and Sims 3 and Dancing Through Life …
I couldn’t do it.
I couldn’t go back to Azeroth, where spending an afternoon with the man I love means doing the daily circuit in Icecrown or leading 23 of our closest friends through Ulduar.
Apparently, he couldn’t do it either.
On Tuesday morning, I was back at Terminal 2.
So was Jef.
He proposed in Terminal 2, in the exact spot that we first met last June, and where we’ve both met and said goodbye on every visit since. The cute, sweetly romantic thing is that he didn’t even fly into Terminal 2 this time: he flew into Terminal 4, and took the airport shuttle to Terminal 2 to meet me in our special place.
There, he went down on one knee — in front of everyone — including a little old lady who was pleased to announce she had the entire thing on film! — and made a lovely, heartfelt speech. It took leaving and coming back again to make him realize it, he said, but our proposal shouldn’t be about an expensive dinner or some crazy scheme to slip me a ring. It should be about a real life together, and a real, tangible commitment.
Needless to say, I accepted.
And, lo and behold … it’s soulbound.
* * *
I love you, bear.
This adorable little puppy — most likely a Plott hound mix of some kind, although she was initially billed as a pit bull — was abandoned by her owners in the desert outside of Maricopa, Arizona. The local animal control officer fell in love with her and snapped a few photos on his camera phone, which he sent to the city’s self-proclaimed Pet Social Worker.
The Pet Social Worker (who just so happens to own the pet sitting company I moonlight for) posted Reeses’s picture in the Pets section of the community forum — encouraging anyone who might be interested in her to contact the county pound.
At about the same time, a friend of mine was looking for a new dog, so — incorrigible matchmaker that I am! — I called the shelter to ask a few questions about the pound puppy that the Pet Social Worker was promoting online. As a part of a routine “pre-adoption” interview, my name and phone number were added to her file.
My friend eventually decided not to adopt a dog, so I marked the forum thread “read” and resolved simply to hope for the best.
About three weeks later, I received an unexpected phone call from a 520 area code:
“Hi, is this Michelle? This is Pinal County Animal Care & Control. We’re about to put this puppy to sleep, but I have a Post-In note in her file with your name and number. Were you interested in adopting her? If so, I can stop the euthanasia…”
That, ladies and gentle-tauren, is emotional blackmail at its finest.
I left work early that day and drove the 40 or so miles from Phoenix to Casa Grande to pick up the terrified, tick-infested, oh-so pathetic little mutt who very nearly broke my heart.
It took a long time for Reeses to warm up to people, but she took an immediate liking to my dogs. As you can see, Nala, my German Shepherd, became a special friend:
Like many rescues, Reeses was definitely a “project.” She was intimidated by the doggie door and absolutely terrified of the leash, so house training was difficult… to say the least. She didn’t like to be touched, was deathly afraid of men, and inevitably fled in terror at loud noises or sudden movements (and believe me, there are a lot of those in a house with five dogs, two cats and a 13 year-old).
She also thought the coffee table was a chew toy and ate half the couch.
Eventually — with time, love and a small fortune in milkbones — Reeses came around. I eventually found a permanent home for her, with a family who adores her and sends me Christmas cards every year with her picture on them.
* * *
Why am I sharing this story on an ostensibly WoW blog?
Because — as I’m sure you know by now — Brajana of Mend Pet is celebrating her one-year anniversary and 250th post by hosting a “Need More Stable Slots” SPCA Charity Drive & Giveaway.
In Brajana’s words:
The SPCA (Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) is constantly working to provide health care and shelters for pets and animals that have been abandoned and abused. All the pets I’ve ever had have come from local shelters, which would not exist without the help of charities and their doughty volunteers.
Needless to say, this is a cause I feel passionately about.
Unfortunately, most people don’t realize how large the pet overpopulation problem is, or even that there is pet overpopulation problem. To put things in perspective: the American Humane Society estimates that the United States euthanizes 9 million unwanted dogs and cats each year. Given the current state of the economy, and the distressing number of “foreclosure pets” being abandoned along with their homes, this number can only go up.
The SPCA strives to alleviate the problem by providing financial support to rescue organizations by “awarding multiple cash grants to needy shelters every month. This money goes a long way toward helping the shelters improve their physical conditions, enhance their spay and neuter programs, and ultimately reduce euthanasia rates.” To anyone who loves animals, it is a very worthy cause.
To donate to the SPCA (and to enter Brajana’s giveaway in the process!), or to contribute prizes — such as loot cards, game time, or some special talent or service — please visit Mend Pet before July 31.
And to adopt a new pet, visit your local shelter.
Unconditional love has a face. For me, it looks a lot like this:
I have a dead fish phobia. I don’t mind live fish — one of my real life friends has a salt water aquarium, which I find endlessly fascinating — but dead fish creep me the hell out. Crustaceans are even worse. I absolutely will not touch seafood, including tuna and breaded fishsticks, and while I’m much better about this than I used to be, I still have a hard time being around others while they’re eating creepy-crawly or flippy-floppy things from the Deep Blue. (True story: my soon-to-be-ex boss once decided it would be cute make a lobster tail crawl across the table at a business dinner — all while crying “I’m gonna get you!” in a high pitched, squeaky voice.)
Unfortunately, my real life issues with fish (which I blame on my Thai mother, who fried fresh fish in the house every single day while she was was pregnant with my brother, and then ingested them — heads and all! — with disgusting relish), extends to the World of Warcraft. I avoided leveling fishing for the longest time because I couldn’t stand having an inventory full of pixelated fishheads.
Why, yes, I am neurotic. How sweet of you to notice.
But, you know. I’m a big girl with Dalaran Cooking Awards to burn … so I got over it. Fake fish aren’t nearly as creepy as real fish (although the big bug eyes on some of the lower level catches are still fairly frightening).
Not too long ago, I skill-ding’d 450. Now I’m half-heartedly attempting to fish up a Sea Turtle, and will occasionally spend an hour or two making the rounds of the Northrend fishing holes — usually while chatting on Vent or watching Law & Order, since fishing is comfortably mindless and my mind is otherwise occupied.
Last night, I found myself fishing with game sounds on for the first time … ever.
And, lo and behold, every time I hooked a fish, I heard a delightful little splashing noise.
Hey. I wish I’d known about that 450 levels ago.
A countless number of fish (and perhaps a Sea Turtle or two) have escaped my lure because I alt-tabbed to the blog or the official forums or Facebook … or because I forgot to watch the computer screen because Elliot Stabler is so much cuter than my Tauren’s backside … or because I typically only fish at night, when the reflection of the moonlight on the water makes the bobber almost impossible to see …
Oh well. Better late than never, right? In a way, I suppose I have The Sims3 to thank: I was playing with game sounds turned on to choose the perfect voice for my Buffy Summers lookalike (devoted geekgirl that I am, I’ve recreated the entire Scooby Gang with terrifying accuracy), and WoW felt a little too quiet and even lonely after that.
Next up? Elphaba and Galinda, of course, In honor of my favorite musical of all time. (Yes, you can make Sims green. Who knew?!)
Also, on a more WoW-related note, here’s tip for any shamans attempting to fish a PvP server: abuse Water Walking! Instead of fishing from shore, I’ll position myself in the center of a pond or lake so nothing can sneak up on me. By the time that annoying ret paladin or rogue manages to swim over, I’m already zooming around, safely out of reach on my 310% mount, singing “Catch me if you can!”
… Okay, so Death Knights can also walk on water and anything with wings or a flying mount can drop out of the sky. But still! It’s hard to use the element of surprise against a water-walking shaman — and without that, the fight will be as fair as it can possibly be.
Just don’t break out the 13-pound catfish. Please.
I was working on another Random Updates-style post — and waxing poetic about Yogg-Saron’s tentacles — when I was called into an emergency meeting at work.
Now, emergency meetings happen all the time when you work in the credit industry during a recession. Half of the companies we sell to are on the verge of bankruptcy, if they aren’t already there. I figured this was more of the same. Another national account filing for Chapter 11, a multi-million dollar exposure to be verified, proofs of claims to be prepared …
Then I noticed that HR was at the table.
That is never a good sign.
So, it turns out that my position is moving to Rosemont, Illinois.
I am not.
I’m trying to come up with something more eloquent to say than fuck, but it isn’t working.
My real life felpuppies!
Rollo is the bat-eared Boxer-mix and Nala is the cheerfully irreverant GSD.
… Sorry, Rollo m’boy, but I don’t think she’s impressed with the Dracula-face. >.>
… by the fact that Scarlett O’Hara and roulette wheel are in my top 5 searches!
I’m in training-the-new-guy mode at work, so I haven’t been able to keep up with updates, comments or even my feedreader, let alone experiment with Twitter. I’m semi-/afk this week. (But giggling! Personally, I would have pictured Scarlett as a mage.)
That’s a fun game to play at work, by the way. If the new guy were a WoW character, what would he be? I’m leaning towards Troll priest at the moment.
Ahhh, he’s back. **Elleiras gains vanish!**
I don’t spend much time on my city’s community forum these days — there’s only so much doom and gloom a girl can take — so I almost missed the newest squabble … which really isn’t all that new, to be honest. It’s yet another iteration of the Evil Townies® debate:
Succinctly put, it goes something like this:
[Townie]: I’m in ur countryside, drinkin’ ur well water.
[Townie]: HAHA. You can’t make me. QQ moar, scrub.
No, really. The only thing missing is Chuck Norris. >.>
So I was trolling perusing the forum this morning, and stumbled across a paragraphs-long rant that started like this:
For those of you whiners who continue to make false claims and complaints against my town, here is a little lip service for you— …
I tried to read it. I really, really did.
But I just couldn’t get past the first line — or the OP’s avatar.
So Maricopa isn’t entirely for the Horde, after all. Pity.
As ashamed as I am to admit it, my descent into trolldom is now complete: