Inauspicious Starts (Patty)

I’ve always believed in the theory that how you start the new year is how the year will go for you.  I’m thinking I need to ditch that because if how I started 2012 is any indication of how the year goes, I need a hole to hide in for the next 12 months.

New Year’s Eve morning – decided to pay some lingering parking tickets.  Denver city and County raises money by ticketing side streets 1x a month because we forget to move vehicles for street sweeping.  I thought there were two, one on each of the boys’ vehicles.  Logged in citation number, and there are five totaling almost $600.


New Year’s Even afternoon – youngest son has been in tooth pain off and on for four months, he made a dental appointment, then forgot to go, kept forgetting to make another one.  Pain is getting worse, more on than off.  I finally call a dentist and the soonest we can get in is January 9, which he says will be okay, he can make it that long.  Then it all gets worse, and he’s curled up in the fetal position practically. I tell him I can get him into the ER dentist on Friday.  No, he’ll be okay.  Saturday noon, I tell him he’s going, I can’t take this anymore. Whining 21-year-olds are not that much fun.  $600 later at the dentist, he is back to normal.  My new year hasn’t exactly started yet, but the path in is not that much fun.

Ow again.

Kitchen sink plugs up also on Saturday, wait until Monday to call a person, they can’t rooter it out, schedule camera, they also fix my bathroom sink while there, charge me – that’s right – about $600. Camera guy comes out, is in the process of telling me how awful my problem is, he can’t see anything, I’m going back to look at the camera, and whoose, camera thingie dislodges something, and water is running through my pipes!!!!!  Yeah, this is awesome. But the guy shows me how corroded that junction is, it’s cast iron, it’s failing, need to replace it, should be about a day job, he’ll get a quote.  Comes back. No, no, it’s not a quote for $600. $6,000!!!!!!!  for a day’s work, 8 hours, one guy because two guys can’t even fit in this space. That’s almost $800 an hour.  I told him, um, no, I’ll shop that around, checked and see trenchless systems and lots of less expensive ways to deal with it when I’m ready to, and the amount they were charging for that job was about triple what they should have charged. I know they look and see a single woman with a nice home in a nice neighborhood and just start jacking up the rates.  If I wasn’t so mad about that potential gouging, it would have been hilarious.


Now, I’m looking at my 6 6 6 for the three unexpected bills I had to pay over New Year’s and hear the faint clop-clopping of four steads in the distance.

My version of finding a hole to hide in for the rest of the year was Musette telling me about a book she got for christmas – Bags to Love: in Pop-up.  Every purse lover should have this book. The bags pop up, it’s full of cute little facts and quotes. and get the Shoe Love: In Pop-Up to go with it if you love shoes too.  Every girl I’ve shown this to so far has just squealed with delight, as did I. I love thumbing through it, folding and unfolding the pop-ups, ignoring the horrible 2012 start to the year. It’s a grown-up girl pop-up book.  Now I want a fashion pop-up book and a perfume bottle pop-up book.  Anyone know how to design one of those?

And I’m on a cleanse – dietary and karmic.  I’m just not sure how to do the latter.

How did your New Year start? Awesome or  a trail of tears like mine? Do you think it matters?

  • DinaC says:


    I can relate to your misery. My husband’s car needs $800 of new tires. My clothes dryer is on its last legs. And the list goes on… My NYE weekend was spent dealing with a migraine that kept rebounding every time my meds wore off. Ugh. Not my favorite thing, but I was warm and dry. Everyone was home, healthy and safe. I feel very blessed.

    I hope your karma train does a quick U-turn and heads to Happytown lickety-split!

  • Tom says:

    Oh dear. 2011 was a bizarre year with a lot of highs and lows. I hope 2012 evens out a bit.

    At this point if I had to pay out $2100 I think I’d just have to cry. My iPhone crapped out this week and I was afraid that I hadn’t bought Applecare when I had the chance. Luckily the lady at the Genius Bar fixed it with a few long button presses. I’d could have kissed her. Now I just need either decent employment or lotto winnings..

  • hongkongmom says:

    mmmm jewish new year has already been and over that period we focus on the past year, our erros, or plans for being better and doing more good things(mitzvehs) this 2011/2012 i am finally peaceful in the understanding that life has to be full of both good and bad and that it is how we cope with things. Am happy to be and exist with the Blessings of my family friends community, G-d and people , to focus on love and positive attitudes and because of that it makes the tough stuff easier to deal with..inflation overtaking us, the passing of my bff sister soul, and another stage 4 cancer soul. the challenges of having an adhd son in a rather regimented school. my ceo dad being not so well and so the list continues…at the end of all that my 18 yr old returned from DC…spent a night out partying on Jan 03 and in the am i found a huge giant undressed exchristmas tree which she rescued from the garbage disposers and schlepped all over town cause she new her mama would love the smell! Ok so it takes up the whole entrance hall…but my home smell delish!

  • Janet says:

    my New Year started with a kiss at midnight, at my love’s niece’s house and then on New Year’s Day, I spent most of the day alone, cleaning, cooking, reading & watching a movie I’d always wanted to see, Ponyo. Love babysat the grandkids at his daughter’s house :-)

    Sorry about your 666!!!

  • Julie says:

    Also had a not so auspicious start to the new year. Spent almost $600 on my car – running fine, but needed new tires and a new part. But then after they installed that part, my car decided to stall ever time I slowed down! So I had to spend much of my long weekend going back and forth to the shop. And got some other bad news on New Year’s Day. And my husband and I (and most of our friends) have colds. Of course, these are all very minor things. So perspective and gratitude, as Joanna says!

  • FragrantWitch says:

    I think that if you believe that it sets the tone for your new year, it will. If you shrug it off as just life, then it has no impact at all. Just move forward …:-)
    I’ll tell you one of my favourite quotes: ‘ Whatever you think you can do or believe you can do, begin it. Action has magic, power and grace.’ Okay, two ‘ If I accept you as you are, I will make you worse. If I treat you as if you are that which you are capable of becoming, I help you become it. ‘ Both are Goethe. Both good for the New Year and anytime a fresh start is required!

  • Joanna says:

    Perspective. My husband and I couldn’t afford to buy each other gifts for Christmas. We got the kids and family taken care of and bought a new water heater because we had to. Last week my best friend from high school’s mother died unexpectedly. Very much hurting for her entire family. And I’ve moped a little bit because we can’t afford to make changes to and fix up the new house as quick as I’d like. I still don’t have curtains. I don’t know when I’ll ever be able to afford any of the bottles of perfume on my fb list. I don’t remember the last time I bought new shoes or a new bag. I’d love those books by the way!
    On the flip side, we finally own a house. A year ago I was crying because I didn’t believe that would ever happen. We are all healthy. My mom is crazy but I still have her. My neighbors, (No joke) frequently use their outdoor spa in the nude. I’ve had to put blinds up in my little kids’ room but I’ve decided to just call it cheap entertainment when I get an eyeful. My ex got a job with a state university which now means my 16 yr old can attend any state college for free. I have a nice collection of fragrances, shoes and bags and don’t actually need anything. My husbands new job means we have (affordable) insurance, including dental and vision for the first time in 4 years. Perspective. And gratitude.

    • Musette says:

      Good for you!

      I laugh at myself and do that as well, when I piss and moan about not being able to afford the Valextra I want…as I sit, snug,, in my house while the winds howl outside, on a computer, with a full (some would say ‘too’ full :”> ) belly…I’ve decided that pissing and moaning is a great barometer – if you have the ability to do that, then your life isn’t too awful.

      I’m giggling at the visual of your nekkid neighbors. Please tell me they’re at least somewhat attractive? We’re not talkin’ a nekkid Wilford Brimley here, are we?

      xo >-)

      • Joanna says:

        No, they are not very attractive which might make it even more entertaining. Wilford Brimley isn’t too far off the mark. They are grandparents and when the grandkids are visiting is the only time they bother with bathing suits. Their hottub is about 20 ft from my kitchen window. There is a privacy fence that blocks off the tub itself but they frequently run from the tub to the door in various stages of undress. My children’s windown looks straight down on the tub too. The first night we moved in I was putting them to bed and my 7 yr old says, “Hey mom there are people outside with no clothes on!”
        We’re easy going liberal people and it doesn’t freak us out too much. I do keep the blinds drawn in the kid’s room now.

  • Musette says:

    If it’s any consolation, the absolute worst NYEs for me have resulted in stellar years! Twoo! I swear it! The New Year’s Eve where my then-hub got hammered (along with everyone else, save me and one friend) at one of those faux-fun dinner parties…at at the stroke of midnight, pecked me on the cheek and then started checking out our friend’s tonsils (seated on his other side)….everybody (but me and the one other friend) so blitzed they couldn’t see straight, my bf coming out of her dress, with her boobs sitting on the charger……aiiiiyyy! Massive fight (he demanded an apology from ME! 😮 )…..

    I made SO much money that year. Seriously. And it’s been thus ever since.

    This year, El O was driving to see his mama – catalytic converter went out in the car. Cub forgot to call and let me know his train schedule…pop went in for emergency angioplasty (he’s fine). I lost my sense of taste.

    I’m expecting to pay off the shop loan by May!;)

    xoxox >-)

  • maggiecat says:

    I now feel grateful that my New year’s was rather ordinary – not dull because i have much to be grateful for (DH, for example!). I hope all of you feel better soon and that you’ve gotten all of the ick out of the way for 2012!

  • Vanessa says:

    Something in the water here too…

    A friend of my own age died on New Year’s Day (after a long illness), and as I received the news, I was just going into a hospital to visit my cousin who was taken seriously ill on Christmas Day. This was all topped off by a stinking cold which struck on NYE. So I saw the New Year in feeling sober and sorry for myself on apple & rhubarb juice.

    • Patty says:

      Oh, Vanessa, that is awful, and you’re sick too!? All of you are. I think I’m glad I got mine out of the way in November.

      do you do the apple & rhubarb juice for the cold? Part of my cleanse is starting off with a fresh juice in the morning – carrots, celery, cabbage, beets, ginger, lmeon, kale, parsley. I admit to putting more ginger in there than I probably should have, but I looooooves the Gingah!

  • Kathryn says:

    I’m impressed that you rose to every occasion with such clarity & competence. Perhaps you can take some comfort in the Celtic belief that everything comes in threes. Three minor catastrophes having occurred, you’re now clear to resume having fun again.

    • Patty says:

      oh, no, not me, I was having a whiny baby meltdown for like four days. 🙂 and crabby. My poor dogs, who were also being crabby, were not that happy with me, I was not their normal nice dog-mom.

      so it’s the Celts that do the bad news in threes? My sister used to work for the mortician in my hometown, and he always said that death comes in threes, but if you go past three, you’re going to seven, that’s the next bad news multiple. I think one winter, they were wondering what the number was after 7! Cold, brutal winter.

      • Musette says:

        Beans. [-(

        You are one of the most competent people I know.

        xo >-)

      • hongkongmom says:

        how is it that the dogs echo our mood!!!?

      • hongkongmom says:

        and for us the 3 is a great number..once u do something three times, it is a habit…good for things like the gym, going to prayers, getting up and extra 15 minutes earlier…etc I think it is more when it rains it pours….all of it happens at the same time and then…its over

  • Francesca says:

    Wow, Patty!

    I’ve been feeling rather crummy since Jan 2 and have had to miss my first two days back at work, and I was wondering, along with you, if this bodes ill for the new year. But let’s keep our heads up and our noses sniffing and things have to get better.

    I’m really so sorry for all your expensive travails and hope things work out finding some less gougy plumbers

    • Patty says:

      I’ve decided that rather than thinking this is how my year will go, that I’ve just gotten some of the allotment of crap I had coming to me this year out of the way early! There, I feel better, do you?

      You feel better too!!!

      I’m not thinking about the plumber. My sink is running free, and I’m not running any food down the garbage disposal unless it liquefies in water. It’s safer that way in an old house. 🙂

      • jen says:

        We are doing the holding on thing with old plumbing, dont use the garbage disposal; it works, we have been doing it for 10years. Take that, plumber, buy your own boat.

        • Musette says:

          Luckily El O does all the plumbing here – came in handy when the bathroom waterline burst yesterday 😮

          “who would have thought the old line to have so much water in it?”

          He’s outside running new electrical lines now….which is why I haven’t chopped him into 3000 little pieces, I guess. He is Extremely Useful.

          xo >-)

  • AnnieA says:

    I’ve had a history of baroquely horrible New Year’s Eves: being kicked out of the house we were housesitting, going to a party where the hostess didn’t bother attending and being left alone with her boyfriend, getting lost in a car with a squabbling couple, etc. etc. To avoid the curse I either a) stay home or b) go to a friend’s house for a *small get-together. Went with Plan B this year and all was well. No good stories to tell later, but that’s all right…

    • Vinery says:

      Oh dear, sounds like you have plenty of stories already and really don’t need any new ones! Those are some scary New Year’s Eves.

    • Patty says:

      wow. I do the staying home thing too, just no interest in compounding my worries by getting in a car with the idiots out on the road on NYE.

      I think it’s good to have no good stories to tell. NYE is something I like to go into it with boring.

  • Daniela says:

    Oh Patty! What a way to start the year! If it makes you feel any better, I got slammed with a cold on NYE, and it’s still going strong four days later. My first few days of 2012 were spent in bed, surrounded by kleenex and high on cold meds. So I definitely hope that the rest of the year isn’t like this! Sending good karma your way :)

    • Patty says:

      Oh, ick. That is the one thing I’m grateful for, that I didn’t get slammed with being sick, which would have just been the frosting on this crap sandwich.

      Get better soon!!!