Wednesday, December 1, 2010

I'm Going Somewhere With This, I Promise...

There are serious flaws in the infrastructure design in Northern Nevada. Most freeways and roads loop you around or send you down unnecessary roundabouts. You can imagine how hand this is in the winter when it snows or when the roads are icy. Then there is always some sort of road work going on somewhere. I'm not sure if this has something to do with the wear and tear due to weather (cars driving with snow chains, cables, snow tires, plus snow and ice in winter and heat in summer) or if they just get hairs up their butts to redo the roads frequently to keep construction workers employed. Whatever the case, there are always either too many over sized construction signs practically in the middle of lanes or no signs or lights to direct you where to go and unless you're in the know, you'll get lost.

Parking lots are like mazes. If you make a wrong turn, you can't get out unless you drive five miles around one way and wind up somewhere completely different. I think some of the lots most notorious for this set up are by the Walmart and Borders on Kietzke and South Virginia, Shopper Square, Legends at Sparks Marina, and well, pretty much every parking lot for any outdoor strip mall or shopping center. Sometimes I feel like some stoner designed the parking lots and roadways in this town while high thinking how trippy it would be to have a swirling cement island blocking what could otherwise be a very streamline route. I don't know. Maybe it's like the excessive roundabouts and some sort of sneaky means of slowing down fast drivers. Of course drivers out here are a whole other story.

I never liked driving in California because I am a very timid driver. Rarely do I go fast, but out here, it seems like I am the fast driver... and I'm just going the speed limit! People out here have a problem with going too slow when there are high speeds, or too fast when there are low speeds. When I drive to work, I take Mill to McCarran because it's just faster that way. Less traffic and higher speed limits. But no one seems to know that there is a 50 mph speed limit on Mill behind the airport! And the speed before you hit that 50 mph zone is 40 mph, but they seem to go 20 mph because they all need to go to whatever little shops are on the way before there. Then there's the 45 mph zone after the airport up to McCarran. Again, people go 20 mph slower because they don't know where they're going! Come on! You make the same commute every single day! How is it you do the same thing every day and yet you still slow down to an almost stop at every intersection as if to read the street signs to make sure you're making the right turn!? That baffles me. But I'm sure after doing it 5 days in a row they probably have developed the habit of it and thus ruining the benefits of a 45 mph speed limit for those who are attempting to make their commute faster because it would be ridiculous to take the freeway with all of the backtracking involved and the route Google Maps suggests with its millions of stop lights and school zones because it is .2 miles shorter than my high speed limit zig-zagging route that can get me there 10 minutes faster!

I really appreciate getting to work slightly earlier because that means a better parking spot. Granted there's enough parking for everyone, but I've worked at places where if you don't get a parking spot, even a bad one, it meant street parking. And if you got stuck with that, you were screwed. But in addition to getting a nice parking spot, it gives me time to do little things like get coffee or tea and go to the bathroom.

Our office is two stories. Most of the office is downstairs and uses the downstairs break room and bathrooms. Not me. I'm upstairs. I use the upstairs bathroom and break room. Partially because they're right next to me, partially because it's a micro version of my 3 mile radius habit which stemmed from my nothing outside the valley habit I grew up with. I'm like a little critter that likes to stay within it's territory. Anyway, our bathroom is pretty swanky but there are some huge differences between the upstairs bathroom and the downstairs bathroom. In addition to it being a single toilet bathroom, the toilet is also unusually tall. I can't help but feel like a little kid who has learned to use the big people potty whenever I go. You know, giddy, kicking my feet like I'm on a swing kind of. I mean, it is tall. Finally, for some weird reason, our sink doesn't get hot water. So it really sucks on mornings when you drive to work all cold and tread through the snow having to pee because you're so cold only to finish up by washing your hands with cold water.

You never notice something until someone points it out. Then you can't help but always notice it. I've been noticing whenever it's 11:33 for over ten years because one of my friends once told me in high school it was her "evil" time, that being, every time she looked at the clock, for whatever reason it was 11:33. Ironically, it's not 11:33 right now. Another case in point was that a coworker mentioned that the soap in the bathroom seems strangely far from the sink. Naturally, now I notice it is far from the sink! And, to make matters worse, it seems like every time I go in, it gets farther and farther from the sink, despite my efforts to bring it closer. What's that all about!? And as if that's not enough, insult is added to injury when you need to dry your hands after washing with the cold water, traveling away to get the soap, and going back to the cold water, only to have to go all the way back to where the soap was to get the paper towels to dry off! It's madness I tell you!

OK, it's not that horrible, but it does distract me from thinking otherwise stranger thoughts. Like how I'm desperately needing a hair cut, particularly my bangs. They're doing this weird thing, and maybe it's the weather, but they now want to fall to the side opposite of the direction of my natural part. Don't get me wrong, I think I look good with sideways bangs, but the problem is, the bangs plus my haircut make me look like the guy in No Country For Old Men. I love that movie and the character of Anton Chigur, but, I feel a little odd with sharing his hair style. Fortunately, SNL made a parody of There Will Be Blood and No Country For Old Men in which the character was mocked for having a "ladies haircut". So it's confirmed, my hair is alright and he has a chick do.

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