Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Attorney-Client Relationship

For all of you recent law school grads who still don't have employment lined up for after the bar exam, don't worry! Clients will seek you out and offer to hire you, even if you don't advertise, work for a firm, or even practice law!


From:Veronica Lui Fung
International Trades Department
Electrical Marine, Phuket, Thailand
Phuket Boat Lagoon, 20/10 Moo 2, Thepkasattri Road, Koh Kaew, Muang, Phuket
83200, Thailand.

Attention: Counsel

We the management of Electrical Marine, Phuket, Thailand, require your legal representation for our North American Customers.

We are of the opinion that the ability to consolidate payments from North America will eradicate delays due to inter-continental monetary transaction between Asia and North America.

We understand that a proper Attorney Client Retainer will provide the necessary authorization and we are most inclined to commence talks as soon as possible.

Your consideration of our request is highly anticipated and we look forward to your prompt response request.


Veronica Lui Fung


Tuesday, June 19, 2007

I Have a BLOG??

You're KIDDING me!

Lots of stuff happening in the Katze and Ash household, but I can't really blog about the really big thing yet, and so I face a double hurdle in blogging:

1) I can't think of anything else to blog about except the thing I really want to but can't,


2) God, am I busy.

So let me blog about some of the little stuff until I get tired and/or bedtime rolls around.

Item #1: Our cardboard castle is much much smaller. We've still got a few piles of boxes but the piles consist of maybe five or six boxes each, as opposed to the towering walls of boxes we used to have everywhere. That means we are sort of living like Real People again. We had a visitor this week for job-related reasons, which gave us a burst of motivation. We got the living room in very good shape over the course of an evening, and then for an encore, we fixed the leg on the TV stand (it got broken in the move, as we were unloading things at 11 p.m. The snap of the leg was the straw the broke the camel's back and resulted in the outbreak of tired hysteria and muchas tears. Let's not talk about it anymore.) and Ash hooked up all of our various electronic doo dads. At night, when the lights are off, it looks like Mission Control with all the little blinking diodes and displays. The thing that's kind of thrown me a little is that the addition of Ash's Playstation and the cable box means that I don't have room for the VHS tapes that I stored in the little shelves anymore. I would just go out and replace all of those VHS tapes with sleeker and smaller DVDs, but we're really not at the point where we have silly amounts of disposable income just yet.

I'm especially happy that we've got the kitchen up and running so that we can make and eat proper meals. All the fast food and junk we were shoving down our throats for a few weeks there has already show up on my hips and belly, and I've got this wedding dress to fit into in 93 days. After our first week or so, I was freaking out about grocery shopping because it seemed like I bought all this food and Ash ate it right away. But now it's getting easier to judge how much food to buy for the two of us. Funny thing: I'm finding it easier to plan and stick to a food budget when I have to take both of us into account than I did when it was just me. I wonder why that is? Maybe just because I have to think about it consciously instead of just walking into Aldi and buying whatever strikes my fancy?

Item #2: What is up with the chicken we bought at Aldi this time? I buy the big frozen bags of chicken quarters and thaw them out two at a time. They are super good when you bake them with the skins on and something shoved in between the skin and the chicken. I cut the skins off before serving and everything is moist and the spices soak right into the flesh. So tonight I decided to make a slightly different version of a dish I've made many times, chicken curry. I normally buy a premixed spice paste, add tomatoes and onions and chunks of chicken, then bake the whole mess in a covered casserole dish. It is deeeelicious. Ash and I picked up some Thai curry past and coconut milk awhile back and I've been meaning to make something using it ever since, and I prepared my normal curry dish with the Thai curry paste instead of the Indian paste I usually use.

When I was getting the chicken ready for the baking dish, I had Ash chop off a big, nasty bony chunk that had something attached that looked suspiciously like bits of unidentifiable chicken innards-- kidneys, maybe. I don't know; I'm not a chickenologist. After a sojourn in the oven, the kitchen smelled amazing and I pulled the chicken out to carve it up and put over the bean curd noodles that were boiling on the stove. I put the knife into the first piece and red liquid shot out. I told myself not to panic-- after all, this dish was swimming in diced tomatoes. I probed a little deeper with the knife and revealed a huge red blood vessel, which promptly burst, creating a blood filled cavity within the chicken.

Now, don't get me wrong: this is meat and one sometimes finds blood vessels in meat. But this was no ordinary tiny capillary that was missed in the chicken butchering process. It looked like the damned jugular or aorta or something and the amount of blood that came out of it was sickening. I yelled and Ash came running. It was clear to both of us that the bleeding chicken had to go-- I certainly wasn't going to eat it and Ash didn't look too excited at the prospect, either. And the longer I looked at the blood oozing out of the chicken on the plate, the clearer it became to me that I would throw up if I ate even one bite of chicken. Even if the other piece was perfectly fine. In fact, for a minute, I wasn't sure that I wasn't about to throw up right then.

Luckily, I had planned to make paneer makhani later in the week, so I fried the paneer in some olive oil and we ate the sauce and noodles, which were simmering innocently (and fragrantly) on the stove the whole time. We threw out the chicken and onions and tomatoes. I hate to waste food like that. But really, there was no way that either of us was going to eat it.

Item #3: It's bedtime. I'll be back for more when I get some time...

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Anyone Here Speak Binary?

On Friday, I reviewed a contract that contained the phrase: "the date of commencement shall be 01101101". After a quick chuckle and flash back to the special enrichment classes I attended in elementary school, I thought I'd be able to figure out whether the first "0" or one of the first two "1"s was extraneous by context. Haha! The contact was signed on Oct 26, 2000, and standard practice in our industry would allow either Nov. 1 or Jan 1. to make perfect sense as the commencement date. Gah.


Monday, June 04, 2007

Day in the Life

My day yesterday:

8:30 am--Get up, make breakfast, get paper-- this is an improvement over last week, when my paper was either not left or stolen
9:30 am-- Get dressed for church. Realize that I really should have shaved, but it's too late for a touch up.
9:40 am-- Get in the car and drive fast. Summer hours start at the church right after Memorial Day, so services start at 10 instead of at 11.
10:05 am-- Arrive at church. Suspiciously few cars parked out front.
10:07 am-- Discover that summer hours have not, in fact, started yet.
10:15 am-- Step into the church office with the pastor and make appointments for our premarital visits.
10:30 am-- Learn that a fellow church member works for a charity that tries to help people make the leap from homelessness and welfare to work. Think of the six large garbage bags of clothing that Ash and I have pulled from our closets, including several suits and some men's dress shirts, some of which didn't even make it out of the wrappers. Drive to old apartment to fetch bags of clothes.
11:00 am-- Church. Ash is to meet me at my old apartment at 11:00, which probably means 11:30. I hope he is really late and that he won't be mad when I'm not there.
11:05 am-- Notice that today is the first Sunday of the month. This means communion will be served. Which means that the service will be especially long.
11:06 am-- Announcement from the pulpit that we'll be honoring the graduates in the congregation today. Crap. This will be a REALLY long service.
12:32 pm-- Church is over.
12:34 pm-- Pull up in front of my old apartment building. Ash is waiting on the sidewalk, talking on the phone. He doesn't look mad, whew.
12:40 pm-- Ash starts loading things into his car, I start consolidating the piles of misc. stuff into one room and throw things into boxes.
12:41 pm - 2:50 pm-- box things up, throw things out, box things up, throw things out.
2:50 p.m.-- Stuff my car with boxes and bags of things to be donated to Goodwill.
3:00 pm-- Drive to closest Goodwill.
3:16 pm-- Man opens loading dock door and informs me in heavily accented voice, "This NOT Goodwill. Furniture Store. Furniture Store. Opening here, not Goodwill." Seriously consider throwing everything into first available dumpster.
3:45 pm-- Arrive at next closest Goodwill. Unload boxes while slackjawed teenager watches and asks desultory questions: "'zat work?" (in reference to a lamp-- he does NOT ask the same of the vacuum or any other appliances), "You donating it all?" (no, I just thought I'd have you take a look at it before I take it back home.)
4:15 pm-- Get McDonald's and stuff it down my throat too fast to taste. It's the first food I've eaten since breakfast almost 8 hours ago.
4:45 pm-- Arrive back at the old apartment. Feel sick from eating too fast.
4:46 pm-- Start loading things into Ash's car for what will hopefully be the final trip.
4:49 pm-- Run into creepy guy across the hall's wife. She is carrying a box that I recognize as one from a pile of boxes that were stolen from the basement after we got them out of my storage unit and did not take them all at the same time last week. The boxes were empty, so I didn't care (though I was irritated). However, they also took the Rubbermaid containers with all of my Christmas decorations. I stop her and ask if she's seen my red Rubbermaid containers anywhere. She says she'll ask her husband. I figure they'll go into their apartment, shut the door and pretend not to be at home.
4:50 pm-- I tell Ash about my suspicions. Later, I discover that he immediately starts to think about whether we could get a search warrant for their apartment.
4:55 pm-- Creepy guy comes to my door, bearing the Rubbermaid container. He apologizes, explaining that he thought that they belonged to the dead guy. I think, but do not say "So it was okay to steal from the dead guy?"
5:00 pm-- Creepy guy reappears with a garbage bag. "Are these yours, too?" The garbage bag contains items that were taken from my carefully packed Rubbermaid containers. Apparently they didn't live up to their high expectations for stolen Christmas decorations and they were going to throw them out. These items include a small box of ceramic snowmen. The box has a mailing label on it with my name and address. Thought they belonged to the dead guy, my foot.
5:01 pm-- Ash and I leave with our carloads of stuff.
6:15 pm-- Arrive back at apartment to clean. I have Ash's cell phone, in case I need to call home.
6:16 pm- 7:30 pm-- Clean. This place is filthy. Make many promises to myself that the next move will be different.
7:31 pm -- realize that I will never be done before it gets dark at this rate. Drop my standards for "clean" drastically. Attempt to call Ash. Get message telling me that the number is unavailable.
7:45 pm, 8:00 pm, 8:10 pm, 8:15 pm-- Attempt to call Ash. Get message telling me that the number is unavailable.
8:20 pm-- Get out flashlight for better visibility trying to clean out kitchen cabinets.
8:45 pm-- Give up. Bob will just have to live with whatever is not "clean enough"
8:45- 9:05 pm-- Carry last items, including cleaning supplies and curtains, to car. Discover that shoe rack will not fit unless it is disassembled. Feel overwhelmed by the idea of digging out my screwdriver and dismantling stupid thing. Throw it on the garbage pile.
9:05 pm-- leave for home. I am so filthy I can smell myself. I have never wanted a shower so badly in my whole life.
9:30 pm-- Realize, 2 blocks from home, that I never turned my headlights on.
9:35 pm-- Pull up in front of apartment. Ash is waiting at the window, frantic with worry. We unload the car. I am sucking wind, my lungs are so irritated by cleaning chemicals.
9:45 pm- 11 pm -- Ash sits on the cell phone with Comcast, trying to get our Internet and phone back up and running. Following a shower, I sprawl on the bed and vegetate. Feel grateful that I do not have to haul any more boxes. Woo hoo!