Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Annual Murphy's Law Week

Thanks so much for the well wishes! They are appreciated and I'm probably going to need them.

Because this is my third annual Murphy's Law Week.

Every first week in December, D leaves for a week to a conference. It is the perfect start to December, otherwise known around here as Hell Month.

The administrators for the project D works on, in their ultimate wisdom, schedule an increasingly longer conference every December just prior to the project's biggest software release. The release is usually scheduled for December 26th, which means that most Christmas holidays it is impossible for us to join relatives or see much of D at all. So, December consists of Dave being away for end-of-term school programs, most of Hanukkah (remember, we are a mixed family) and then returns to work 18 - 20 hour days, while I try to deal with finals, final grades, writing deadlines, Christmas prep, some sort of Hanukkah acknowledgment, and usually a visit from my mother.

I just love December.

But I love this week even more, because Murphy moves into my house while D is away, and he takes his boots off his stinky feet and sticks those feet up on my coffee table and refuses to budge from my favorite reading spot.

Two years ago, he visited us by blowing up our range top (think safety glass thrown ten feet) and my slicing off the tip of my thumb and being too pissed and stubborn to go to the doctor, so I walked around with bloody bandages for two days. (I know - TMI).

I can't even remember last year, but C seems to remember a trip to the ER. He's probably right.

This year Murphy moved in the moment D took off for his plane.

Murphy arrived and I got sick. This would have been okay, but:

I was hosting two teen events this past weekend.
We had a friend of C's staying with us from Saturday afternoon through Sunday evening.
There were two ice storms.
I had to go in to work to give exams.
My final grades are due.
C's interim grades are due at the end of this week and he's had masses of work.
I discovered a massive tumor on one of the piggies and another piggy was showing signs of a UTI.
First piggy has to go in for surgery tomorrow.
Both piggies were at the vet's today.

I'm still sick.

Did I mention how much I hate Murphy? He hasn't helped with any of this, and he hasn't even touched the dishes piled up in the sink, nor has he done the laundry that's accumulating downstairs.

He's not my favorite house guest.

So I'm going to kick Murphy out on his big, fat tuchus tomorrow. But in the meantime, I can sleep tonight with dreams of sugarplums dancing in my head, or dreidels singing "Hanukkah, oh Hanukkah". And I can talk about this:

BOOK TALK in advance of Day to Read, January 10, 2008:

The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde. I love Jane Eyre. It may be my favorite book of all time. And I love any kind of weird, funny contemporary fantasy. Jasper Fforde creates a parallel England where Romantic Poets are the equivalent of rock stars and an agent, Thursday Next, is pulled into Jane Eyre to fight against a villain who is kidnapping literary characters and wreaking havoc with the classics. It's funny, if sometimes juvenile and over the top (one enemy agent is named Jack Schitt, for example), but it's definitely a good light read for when you just want to laugh. This is the first in a whole series of Thursday Next books. They just get more and more off the wall, and after a while, they ran a little dry for me, although I'd certainly still read them. I enjoyed the second book just about as much as as I enjoyed the first one(which was a whole heck of a lot) because Miss Havisham is a major character, and it's a Miss Havisham that you've never seen before (among other things, she racks up speeding tickets like a Nascar driver). So for anyone who enjoys classics, and poking a bit of fun at British lit., find The Eyre Affair and have a grand old time.


soccer mom in denial said...

I love parallel reads! Thanks for the book suggestion.

But dear goodness woman! Take a break. Here I am grumbling but at least I'm healthy and my husband is sometimes home!

Oh, how I would love to come over and help out.


Luisa Perkins said...

I am SO sorry to hear about the hellishness at your house. Oy. If I could email you my cleaning lady and a casserole (mine are good), I would.

And I ADORE Jasper Fforde. The second book is actually my favorite.

Leslie said...

Murphy is a permanent resident at our house. He has his own room and everything. I hope he leaves promptly tomorrow!

anno said...

Hmmm... maybe we should be meeting for strawberry daquiris instead of tea?

CableGirl said...

Oh Murphy. Why he has it in for some of us is beyond me. Sorry the Sh^t is hitting the fan for you this past week. Hopefully the rueful Celt won't stick around for too long.

And thanks for the book rec. I'm looking for new reads now. I'm about 20 pages away from finishing my reread of the Pullman trilogy (I couldn't bring myself to finish it last night because then it would be... over) and today I start the "new" Follet book. I'll check Fforde out. I've seen the books in my daily travels to the bookstore (yes, I bring MJ up there daily, it's a nice walk for both of us) but have never committed.

Betsy said...

Your Murphy sounds like my Murphy's evil twin!

Maybe we should combine forces: tie their shoelaces together, leave marbles strewn on the staircases and put salt in their coffee!

Knowing Murphy as I do these things would probably backfire, but maybe he'd finally get the message and move on to his next victim! ;-)

Flower Child said...

There's a reason Hanukkah is 8 nights - it gives you a chance to do something. We're on night two and still haven't "gotten around" to lighting candles. Do you think we're going to hell? If we get them all lit by December 25th is that okay? Speaking of which, can you still get a tree on the 24th? Oh goodness, drink some egg not and just hang in there!

Fourier Analyst said...

Well at least the NaBlow thingie is over! Sending you Get-Well thoughts through the blogsphere. Do me a favor and don't just stop at kicking Murphy but beat the s**t our of him. The guy has overstayed his welcome in a number of places that I know. He is a very unwelcome guest. But first get your strength back and get healthy. And come back and tell us how you have triumphed over the December downers!!

Goofball said...

Gosh, that Murphy sounds like an awful house guest. Make sure the locks are changed by next December! And to give you and Betsy some ideas: salt in the coffee?

What is Anno's remark about? hihi, now I picture you and her over marguerita's and all kinds of cocktails getting tipsy and giggling. :p

Can anyone explain me Hanukkah?

Alex Elliot said...

I'm sorry to hear about how things are going, but I love the post about Murphey! He's a frequent visitor here as well.

Jan said...

I'm sorry for all your turmoil. I think Murphey visits us all at some point. Throw the bugger out & celebrate his leaving..... (((HUGS)))


Unknown said...

A rather wretched run of days, indeed! I do hope some semblance of normalcy returns soon enough to salvage some Holiday Cheer for you and yours.

suchsimplepleasures said...

hi there! i just found your blog through cr8buzz...
i'm in michigan, too. ann arbor is such a great town! my sister went to u of m and i went to eastern so...i was always visiting her...much more to do in ann arbor!
anyway, i'm going to have to check that book out! i loved jane eyre!
feel good. have a great holiday season!

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

Yikes, I hope things will calm down as you get closer to the end of the month. If you can, try to take just a little time out for yourself. I got stressed out just reading about all the things you have to do. :)

Wholly Burble said...

OK, this rather explains why I haven't heard much from you at Madders LOL. My goodness, woman, you need live-in help, and I do NOT mean Murphy.

I haven't heard of this book or author before (we HAVE firmly established I don't get out much I believe)--so off I go to the bookstore to see if I can find this book. Just from what you've shared I am certain it's right up my English Lang & Lit alley ;-)