I’m just going to go open-kimono tonight and talk about whatever is on my mind. ‘Open-kimono.’ I heard one of our execs use that in a conference call and everyone started giggling.
I am giggling tonight! I had an enjoyable experience at the ballet. Not as good as last night, but pretty good. The last dance ‘West Side Story’ was underwhelming. In the words of someone who left as soon as the curtain came down, “They should leave stuff like that to the Orpheum Theater.”
“I agree,” I chimed in. “The singing was horrible! If you can’t get everything perfect, don’t do it!”
Seems like a ton of people have descended on San Francisco recently. Not sure if it’s because of Spring Break, internships, Easter, or what have you. Shaheen is here for an internship. We were supposed to meet up after the ballet, but she pushed off until tomorrow. Too tired.
I didn’t feel like having dinner by myself so I headed to my favorite restaurant: Jack in the Box. I stood in line with a bunch of hoodlums, thinking, ‘only in San Francisco.’ Only in San Francisco is a woman coming from the ballet dressed up in a bright yellow silk dress and my anxiety-causing, expensive fur coat ready to order crispy chicken breast pieces, oreo cookie shake, and super-sized curly fries. The two very tall lanky teenagers who ordered after me rubbed their hands together while placing their orders.
“Oh boy. Am I excited. #7! Yeah, super size that baby. Oh yeah, oh yeah. And can you make my drink the oreo cookie shake? AND the spicy chicken, too. Not the meal. Just add that baby onto my #7.”
I thought he was ordering for him and his buddy until his buddy placed his own #7 meal order and added on ANOTHER bacon cheeseburger. Oh my! And these guys were lanky!!!
Now I’m at home, having finished off my meal. I used the rabbit (my trusty wine opener) to open a bottle of Riesling. I have about an hour to go before Holy Thursday. I usually fast for all of holy week, but it didn’t work out with my schedule this year (shoot me). But the fast (no food, no alcohol) starts tomorrow with the Tridium. Then Easter goodies on Sunday.
My mommy’s doing my taxes and the last piece of the puzzle is how much I paid for stocks that I sold this year. I’ve had my Etrade account since I graduated from college back in 1997. I hate Etrade. Let me repeat: I hate Etrade. The system is very user-UNfriendly. Luckily, they have a center on Market Street. I popped in this afternoon and had a hissy-fit because I couldn’t figure out how much I had bought these stocks for. The relationship manager said to me, “Well, did you check online?”
“Yes, I’m not a dingbat. I did check online. Your stupid site is so user-UNfriendly, it’s very challenging to look this stuff up. I need you to help me.”
Well, the dingbat had just as much trouble as I did. He asked what years I purchased my various stocks.
I turned bright red. “I don’t know! You are an online brokerage, aren’t you? If I knew I had to keep track of this stuff on my own with a pencil and general ledger, I don’t know what I was doing paying $15 in fees per transaction. You’re supposed to keep track of this stuff for me! It should be very easy for me to look up, but it’s not. And I see you’re having trouble yourself. See how user-UNfriendly your 1099 and web site is?”
Trying to defend his dignity and his stupid ass company, he muttered, “I don’t know what you’re talking about. Especially how a 1099 can be user-unfriendly. They all look the same.”
I screamed, “Look at this!” I took out the 1099 for my Wells Fargo online brokerage account and set it next to Etrade’s. “Look how beautiful this is. It’s like a work of art compared to yours. See…very user friendly. It delineates all my different transactions. It tells me how much I initially paid for them so my accountant can do my taxes. It’s very simple and easy to read.”
Turns out, Etrade does not keep any of its records prior to 2001 on its online system. Everything pre-2001 is archived in a data warehouse. They told me I had to submit a request to get any of that information, and that it would take 7-10 days to retrieve. Can you fucking believe that? They are an online brokerage! I’m so pissed, I’m thinking of completely liquidating all of my stock portfolio, regardless of the cost. I hate Etrade!!!
OK, to end on a couple good notes.
I’m already thinking of my birthday (June 18, please mark your calendars!). I celebrated so many times last year (three weeks in a row) that I’m pretty sure I had enough fun to last me a lifetime. But I know exactly where I want to celebrate my birthday this year and I’m really excited to celebrate with friends and family. I talked to the owner of the place where I want to have my birthday and he asked, “How many are you expecting? Is there a certain number you have in mind?”
And I cried, “Honestly, I don’t care if it’s just me, you, and a birthday cake. I love your place so much. I’m happy to celebrate there whether or not other people come. I just had to tell you that. It’s going to be really special. I love your place.”
So if June 18 rolls around and my blog is gone and you no longer have me to remind you, I hope you mark your calendar and email me. I will let you know where the special place is.
Lastly, a little love vignette. You know how it’s always the really little things that remind you how much people care, how much people love you. I’ve lived all over San Francisco. I seem to be attracted (domicile-wise) to busy intersections. I’m used to it—the loud noise, the MUNI buses, the late night drunks. It was very late one night. We were sleeping. Me and my boyfriend. An ambulance came screaming down my street. And with his free hand, he cupped my one exposed ear to mute the noise. He probably thought I was sleeping. He wanted me to rest. It was the sweetest, most loving gesture…which happens to be one of my fondest memories.