Saturday, January 12, 2008

Day 325 - 01/11/2008

Work was a scramble...with family friends coming over for dinner and my desire to get to the gym, I wanted to leave work at 230p. However, migration issues popped up, almost causing me to have to stay late. Fortunately I was able to get them resolved (at 220p), so I was able to leave work on schedule.

When I arrived at the gym, I saw a new employee overseeing the place. She looked vaguely familiar, but not instantly recognizable. As I signed in, she said "Hi, M!" and I responded with a hello, are you new here, welcome aboard, etc., before heading into the gym for a workout. As I was riding the bike, I kept trying to figure out who she was, until it finally dawned on me she looked like one of D's roommates from college.

She came out of the office a couple of times and asked me how everything was and the more I saw her, the more I thought it was her. She (D's roommate) was younger than me by a couple of years and this woman looked older by a few years. Well, maybe she's lived a hard life I thought to myself, trying to remember whether she led a partying lifestyle in college (of course she did...who didn't?).

On the way out of the gym, I stopped in to sign out and struck up a conversation with her. It went something like this:

"Did you ever go to Mason?" I asked her.

"No, but I dated a guy who went there," she responded. "He's dead now."

"Oh, sorry to hear that" I said and explained the reasoning behind the question.

"I did go to McLean High School though." she offered.

I told her that my cousins went there and told her their names.

"I know them!" she said, "I just spoke with Michelle on the other day! So you were their little brother then?"

"No, they're my cousins."



"You probably know my brothers and sisters," she said, before rattling off their names.

"No, I went to Lake Braddock."

"Oh, do you know the O'Connells? They went to Langley."

"I went to Lake Braddock."


I've got to get out of here I thought. What have I gotten myself into? As I was turning to go out the door, she shared with me that she...

"...used to work in real estate, but since the market slowdown, I decided to go into property management. How long have you worked here?"

"About 12 years."

"Wow, that's a long time. So you worked for the company before they were bought?"


"Which property do you manage?"


"I don't," I told her and explained who I worked for.

"My brother-in-law works for them in Falls Church. Do you think you could get him a job out here?"

"He can check out the openings online."

"So, do you have any kids?"

At this point, I really wanted to just say "see ya" but for some reason I was fixed to the spot.

"Two. One of each."

"Oh, can I see them?" she asked, putting her hand out.

"I don't carry pictures of them with me. My wallets in the car anyway."

"So do you live around here?"

"I live nearby," I told her, not wanting to answer more than I needed to.

"I'm babysitting for my sister tonight, she has two kids." As she shared this, she held up four fingers, quickly putting one of them down so only three remained. "They're angels."

"Alright, well, enjoy that gig, I've got to run to pick up dinner." I told her and left before responding. As I was heading out the door, she stood up and put her hand out before pulling it back in.

"Sorry, she said, I would shake your hand, but it's covered with Cheetos debris. I guess I'll see you next time you come in. When do you work out?"

"Monday, Wednesday and Friday." I told her, trying to figure out why I told her that the second the words had left my mouth.

"See you then!"

I fled. I got into my car and got out of there as fast as possible, expecting to see her come out of the gym and follow me or something. I think I'll have to rearrange my workout schedule so I workout at lunch (or in the morning) from now on. I really have no desire to interact with that whack job unnecessarily.

Fortunately normalcy was just around the corner at home. When I got there, Doug, Nancy and Michael had already arrived, along with Pat and Larry (Larry served in the Air Force with Dough back in the '60s, Pat is his wife), their daughter Janet, son-in-law Mike and their two kids Taylor and Garrett. Garret's a musical prodigy and can pretty much teach himself whatever song he hears two or three times. After hearing him play for a while, we ate dinner (I got Willard's on the way home), before heading back into the family room for some more playing. I'm not sure why, but N brought my guitar up for me to play. I guess I should be happy that he thinks my playing is on par with Garrett's (who's pretty darn good!).

I played the few songs that I know and flubbed a few times as well. Afterwards, I got some feedback from Garrett on the intro and outro for a song and was quite embarrassed when he told me what it was. I couldn't believe how simple it was!

After they left and the kids were in bed, I sought out a couple new songs to learn and hit the basement to play guitar until the wee hours of the morning. D went to bed as she was beat after subbing today and then hosting, so she didn't get to hear me learn the strum pattern for "Bad Moon Rising" (which some might say is a good thing).

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