Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Wherein The Ocelot And Her Husband Converse About The Dark Arts.

After a very bad day for the ocelot and her Husband (including tomfuckery at his job, a bad day at hers, her trying to go to a coven meeting that was not happening although Trothwy had said they weren't meeting this week because she is now incapable of remembering anything, and a flat tire that couldn't be replaced because it was seven-thirty before said tire could be tended to), the following conversation was had.

ME: Um, about "Abre Camino". Y'know, the road-opening thing. Apparently this can get kinda rough.

HIM: Hm. You put that stuff on my boots, didn't you?

ME: (somewhat defensively) You watched me do it.

HIM: Yeah. That Santeria stuff doesn't fuck around. Anything else you bought at the botanica that I might want to know about?

ME: Um...John the Conqueror root. (pompously) Traditionally Hoodoo. And Voodoo. Not Santeria.

HIM: Let's confine ourselves to one magical system at a time, shall we?

ME: Pfft. It's fine. (rationalization ensues)

HIM: Yeah, how are you going to feel if your day tomorrow is like the one I had today? It's like the Universe took its bulging cock and slapped me across the face with it and said (drops voice to a dirtily seductive tone), "Hey, look at this."

ME: I am so putting this on my blog.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Wherein The Ocelot Makes With The Magic.


Fundie Housemate has been moping around because Husband and I were fine with his "prayer meeting" in the communal living room (his personal one is almost as big, so the question of why it had to be out there in the first place remains unanswered) until he announced that there would probably be drumming. Electronic drumming. From 9 until 11pm. Y'know, the hours when people who are fortunate enough to have jobs are sleeping.

We have to get up at 5am even on Saturdays, so being kept up by a lot of noise didn't thrill us. We expressed this concern. At no time did we say he couldn't do this - just that we did not want to be kept awake or awakened by it. Out concerns were not addressed.

Two days later - Thursday - FH told me rather glumly that he wouldn't be having his "prayer meeting". So we wouldn't be disturbed after all. "Oh,", I replied, and turned to a far more satisfying conversation with my cacti. He has been more-or-less ignoring me ever since, and I have been rather content with this.

Last night, he apparently decided that being a pain in my ass was far more fun. I was minding my own business and cooking, I-Pod Shuffle firmly on collar and headphones in ears. Rob Zombie was serenading me and I was fairly relaxed. Enter FH. Who starts babbling at me, despite the aforementioned headphones. I took them out to see what was going on now.

He asks if I have an issue with him, in tones that do not indicate any desire to return to a more friendly state of affairs. This peeves me, and I say that no, I do not*, and does he have one with me? He doesn't, he insists, but it certainly seems like I have one with him, and my attempts to explain that his perception is not my problem goes unheeded. He continues making mouth noises at me. I announce that I am cooking, I have been enjoying this Shuffle thing, and that I'm going back to what I was doing, now.

This is when he Makes A Mistake. Because over Mr. Zombie, I hear, "You're the rudest person who's ever lived here" and "I've tried to be nice."


Out go the earbuds. The Death Stare gets locked on. I intone, "OK. I AM BEGINNING TO FEEL THREATENED."

Suddenly he protests, far less forcefully, that he's not making threats, he's not being threatening. Earbuds back in, and Ignore gets set to 10. Then the freaksomeness sets in, because when Husband appears a few minutes later, FH acts like there is nothing. going. on.

I explain, when FH exits, that I am seriously over this shit, and if this dude thinks he's going to throw tantrums at me every time he doesn't get his way (eating entire sticks of my butter without asking, letting his guests come in and use whatever they like, not keeping us awake, using my sugar without asking, etc.), he is in for a full-force Bringing Down The Fiery Shit Right On His Head.

But then I think, after a fitful night's sleep. What do I really want? If he leaves, there might be someone even worse. I like the yard and even The Land, and don't really want to move. I really just want him to leave me alone, to not speak to me beyond "excuse me" or "good morning/evening", to keep his guests out of my things, and to generally behave as though I don't exist. How to go about it? I need quick and dirty. This is when I recall these things called "freezer spells". Off to Rune Soup (link) I go, and take a trip to Kroger and the local botanica.

So the ocelot's To Do list looks like this:
1. Bind FH.
2. Open roads for new, improved job and new, improved housing.
3. Try to find clothes for a 6pm wedding that aren't black.
4. Try to stem the tide of laundry by actually putting the clean clothes away.

Wish me luck - and safety. This guy's obviously got problems, and I want to be left out of them.

*Yes, I know I do, indeed, have issues with him. Hypocritical and bad. But as these are issues unlikely to be resolved by anything short of me converting or him learning the basic lesson of "don't touch what isn't yours, up to and including someone's belief system", neither of which is likely, I see no point in addressing this.

**When someone says this when you're obviously trying to ignore them, it's a threat in my book. There's the implication that you're going to start being unpleasant, and when you're already being unpleasant, well, what's next? Especially when other women who have rented here have called the cops on you for being threatening, if not violent. Other Housemate discounted that incident, but I'm starting to think I should have dug a little deeper about it before moving in.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Wherein The Ocelot Talks About Race And Bullying.

Totally non-magical. Or maybe it will be, by the end. You, dear readers, decide.

Trayvon Martin. This is a tragedy. I think we all know the Self-Appointed Hero who we see as a dorky rent-a-cop, but who sees himself as a Badass. This whole thing is the logical conclusion of this, at least when things go terribly, terribly wrong.

Now - let me tell you how the ocelot profiles people.

Two young white men showed up at our door last weekend. We got out the guns and kept them from view. Said young men were a friend's son and his friend. I am still grappling with the etiquette question of telling or not telling said friend that Husband and I had guns at the ready when her child came to our door. RACISM QUOTIENT: 0.

A young man of either Hispanic or Italian ancestry, by appearance, was wandering around and claimed to be "doing a random property inspection" because "the mortgage company sent me". He had no business card, no immediate supervisor to call, nada. Again with the firearms. RACISM QUOTIENT: 0. Unless you think that the ocelot hates Italians. Or Mexicans.

My boss, met outside normal work hours: BIG Black guy. Has baby. Wears athletic wear. Is roughly the size of my horse. Would he alarm me if he approached me in a dark parking lot, saying his car was dead and he had his baby with him, and could I drive them somewhere? Yes. RACISM QUOTIENT: zero. I am afraid he will break my small car by trying to get into it, not that he would harm me because he is Black. I would ask if he had smaller family members or if he'd care to push the car while said baby and I enjoy a snack, because hey, he's bigger than me, baby, and car put together so why the hell not.

Group of rowdy Black men, ages 15 - 50: alarming. RACISM QUOTIENT: zero. Any group of rowdy men of this age is a danger to self and others through sheer testosterone-based dumbness.

Group of rowdy White men, ages 15 - 50: alarming. See above.

Group of rowdy Hispanic men, ages 15 - 50: not alarming. RACISM QUOTIENT: zero. I have never actually seen this and assume that most of them are like me and the Husband: they work at physically demanding jobs and so are too damn tired to start any shit. I would probably assume the celebration of a family event/graduation/holiday I am not conversant with.

Group of rowdy Asian men, ages 15- 50: not alarming. RACISM QUOTIENT: zero. I have never actually seen this. If I did, I would act as above.

Very large, extremely muscular Black man on public transit or in parking lot: not alarming. RACISM QUOTIENT: 5. I was once saved from being gay-bashed by a bodybuilding young Black Christian man. So now I assume none of them have any interest in raping/beating/mugging me.

Young Black man trying to be all Playa at me: not alarming. I have found young Black men to be the funniest when hitting on random women, and least likely to get pissed when you express disinterest. One Playa was grooving along with his patter, caught a look at my pasty-ass legs, and shouted, "Is that your SKIN?! Good God. Do you want my coat?" RACISM QUOTIENT: 5. I now also assume that all young Black men and I are entering into an agreement by which we both understand the following and far-less entertaining conversation to be happening:
     HIM: You are attractive to me. Would you care to go out sometime, or possibly to have sex right this
     ME: No, thank you. Though you are very funny and I understand that couching your suggestion in this    
            ridiculous manner is your way of saving face should I say no and ensuring that you have in no way
            been insulting or using crass language that would cause your mother to slap you sideways.
    HIM: Thank you. I hope that should you change your mind, that our paths might cross again.
    ME: Thank you. Have a good evening.

Group of rowdy White men, ages 15 - 50, who are skinny, unwashed, and sporting what seem to be poorly-done tattoos: alarming. RACISM QUOTIENT: 10. I assume they are meth-eating crackers who will happily kill me, eat me, and rape my dog and husband. My only hope is that the Orson Wells cat I own will avenge us all.

Next topic: workplace cliques and shit.

We have a guy at work who is small. Unkempt. Smokes cheap cigarettes and therefore sometimes smells less-than-awesome. He looks, sadly, like some kind of somewhat fluffy gopher. His horrible dentition does not help this, and I readily confess that I cannot make eye contact as frequently as I'd like when speaking with him because bad teeth freak me right the hell out. Other than that, I find him agreeable to work with and have no problems with him.

No one else likes him. This is largely based on his appearance and supposed "B.O.", which I have not noticed. It is now also being drummed up as his "problems with women being in charge". I have not found this to be the case, either.

It is starting to seem like "we don't like the weird poor kid who wears Tuffskins and always smells like boiled cabbage" more than legitimate workplace complaints, and I don't like it. To Dr. Seussify things, I do not like it there at work, I do not like it when you are a jerk. I do not like this cliqueish shit, I do not like it, not a bit.

What to do?

Talk to the supervisor? Sure. Try to appeal to everyone's better nature? Done. Bake some cookies along the likes of Z Budapest's* recipe in "Goddess In The Office" to increase harmony and niceness? Maybe. Now, to find the book - I know it's here somewhere. Any suggestions, darlings? Because this guy is a Good Person, and even though they're not acting like it at the moment, so are the other people I work with, and I just want everyone to Play Nice and get along. If a few Magic Cookies help, I'm not above that.

*I know she was mean to transwomen and so is now A Bad Person and whatnot. I still think there's plenty of wheat in the chaff, so I'm not willing to boycott her or her works/ideas.