Nothing but Flowers
Thursday, December 09, 2004
Health Care FSAs
I just ordered 3 boxes of contacs. Not all that surprising or odd, except

1) I don't need new contacs. I probably have enough to last until February or March
2) 3 boxes is a bizarre number to get, since each box is a 6 month supply for one eye

But as I'm sure those of you with FSAs understand, I have until Dec. 31st to use the rest of my pre-tax medical flexible spending account. Last year I bought glasses. Actually, last year I bought the frames in '03 and the lenses in '04 because I didn't have enough left in the '03 election to cover the actual glasses. My eyeglasses store had clearly done this before. It was all legit, especially since I didn't pick up the glasses until January but had to make a down payment in Dec.
ANyway, this year I have enough left for 3 boxes of contacs. I've looked through all the old receipts I could find, and only came up with $20 worth of eligible other expenses--1 copay & some contact solution.

Even after picking up more contact lenses than I can use in 9 months, however, I will still have $30 left that I have to spend by 12/31 or I lose it. There isn't enough time left in the month to schedule a dentist appointment (much as I really need one) and I already have doctor's appointments in January.

So my options are essentially anything you can buy in a drugstore that is healthcare related.

When I was on prescription medication it was much easier to spend this money. In fact, I never had enough. But now it's much harder. Suggestions welcome. Maybe the dentist will have a cancellation, my co-pay is $15. I could try for two appointments in 10 days.
Tuesday, December 07, 2004
I think they saw a different play than I did...
Director finds Williams magic in 'One Arm'

Williams' One Arm packs a punch of pulp

I agree that David and Joe were great and that Reynaldo Rosales (recently of "She Hate Me") is v. v. v. hot.
What Corporate America Can't Build: A Sentence

I've been saying that for years now.
Monday, December 06, 2004
Best. Article. Ever
Thanks to Chicagoist for the link. Baby Jesus Snatched from Daley Plaza--Again. Also thanks to the Sun Times for their, as always, outstanding journalism.

Did I mention that on Saturday night, after the terrible play, I went to Citibank? And the previous customer hadn't logged out? and had a balance of over $32,000 in CHECKING? Good thing Citibank makes you enter your PIN a bajillion times, otherwise I might have been tempted to commit a felony. I was feeling rich, but my 3-days-post-payday checking balance was...well, move a few decimals and divide by 2 and you get the idea.
Sunday, December 05, 2004
Note to self: When you know you have an 18 hour day at work, it is not necessary to go to the gym beforehand. In fact, it's totally masochistic and your workout will be sloppy due to the extra-early hour and anticipation of a long day.

Theater review: About Face/Steppenwolf/Tectonic's stage production of Tennessee Williams' unproduced screenplay about a one-armed boxer-turned-gay-hustler as reinterpreted by Moises Kauffman is everything you would expect.

-Act one had 15 people, numerous sets, lots of costumes, and all that production jazz. Act 2 had three characters and took place in a prison cell. 2 plays for the price of one. And worth every dollar I spent on my comp ticket.

-The story depends on a male lead who is beautiful and vulnerable. All the other characters say he's beautiful and vulnerable, but that doesn't quite carry it. And the actor, most recently of Spike Lee's She Hate Me, is in fact quite attractive. And looks really nice naked. But I never quite cared about him. And he didn't seem all that vulnerable (maybe because he had an AWFUL accent). There was simply no reason to believe that this man would receive 7,800 letters in prison.

-I think the story came about because Tennessee Williams had a one-night stand with a one-armed hustler and decided to invent a story for him.

-If I heard "I only have one arm!" one more time, I would have screamed. I mean, duh. The play is called One Arm. (Actually, my program says "Tennessee Williams' One Arm", which is much funnier). The performer doing the voice-overs and film directions (another gimmick that didn't work) told us he only had one arm. And the actor only used one arm, the other limply hanging (as the voice-over told us to suspend disbelief).

-The only women in the play are: strippers, prostitutes, porn stars, 1 nurse, and "woman on boat" with whom Ollie has a one-night stand. None of the women were important. I suppose the production staff probably would disagree with that, but my note to them is: nothing about the women as they are staged/presented makes me think that women are at all relevant to this story. I know Ollie is straight. That's clear from his interactions with the various men. It is also clear from his conversations early in the play (pre-one arm) and so on. You don't need to totally devalue the female gender to make that point. And if the one woman who has lines is supposed to prove that he's a good guy, well then she shouldn't be such a simp--or he should go back and see her again.

-The ending is, I think, supposed to be redemptive. It isn't.

-Was that enormous set really necessary? The only part used in Act 2 was a staircase and a DC platform.

Despite all those critiques, I was very impressed with the performances, the sound design (because Andre is fabulous), and other aspects of the production. It was a noble effort, but there's a reason the movie was never made -- and it isn't just the attention to male hustlers and nudity.

I think I was just astounded that I saw a play that was in some ways really awful but did not feature a single bad performance.

Apparently they had 5 hours of rehearsal scheduled for today, which is (theoretically) opening. A Steppenwolf first.

And now for something completely different...

Embarassing moment of the week:
At the gym Friday morning (at, as alluded to above, an ungodly hour) a woman stopped me on the way to the locker room: Her: Heidi? I thought I recognized you! How are you? You look fabulous! Are you still working at the theater?
Me: Hi! It's so good to see you, haven't seen you in...years. Yes, I am, I'm also part-time at the B-school, I'll graduate in June. And you?
Her: I'm back in the MAPH program. Worst decision of my life.
Me: And before MAPH?
Her: Remember? Teaching high school and coaching cross-country at a prep school
Me: Oh, right, of course. I remember now.
Her: Every time I've seen you here I've wanted to say hi, but you always seem so focused.
Me: Or exhausted. Hey, we should hang out some time
Her: Absolutely. Are you in a rush or do you want to grab a juice and catch up?
Me: I've actually got to run to work, but maybe another time?
Her: Sounds great. I'm here most mornings, and as far as I can tell you are too!
Me: yeah, so I'm sure I'll see you.

Is it abundantly clear that I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT HER NAME IS?
I'm about 80% sure that she lived in my dorm.
There's also, however, about a 5% chance that we were in a class together, a 5% chance that she did theater, a 5% chance that she was an AOPI, and a 5% chance that we didn't actually go to college together. I'm pretty sure I'd know if I knew her from theater or the sorority, but beyond that...
I related this to someone, and he said "yeah, but you can't possibly remember everyone from your dorm". Which was comforting, except... my college house was one of the smallest on campus. We had about 80 people, about 70 of whom ever left their rooms, and I was house president and social chair and inter-house-council rep. Oh, and it was single-sex by floor. So if we were in the same dorm, we were also on the same floor. Probably for two years. (I didn't really know any of the people who moved in my second year except the ones I was an orientation leader for, and she isn't one of them).

This is why I'll make a terrible politician.

I think one could forgive me for being so awful about remembering names and faces if I actually knew a lot of people. But I don't. I'm very shy and insular. I've never had very many friends, I've never spent a lot of time party-hopping. So someone who knows me well enough to remember my name several years after I last saw her has to be someone I knew relatively well.

It looks like I'll be in NYC Dec. 18-21, though I'm still confirming plans. On the "want to see" list are Pacific Overtures, Wicked, and Democracy. Let me know if a) you are in NY and will be available for coffee or a drink and b) if you think my list of shows needs amending.

Yesterday I had my nails done and went grocery shopping. Today I have not left the apartment except to do laundry (outside, down the back stairs, down the alley to the other side of the building, into the laundry room. Doesn't really count). I'm so glad to be done with finals.

As a last note, however, you'd think that since I didn't leave the apartment I would have accomplished something useful--paid some bills, washed the dishes, something. Nope. Laundry. Cleaned a little, folded laundry. Read. Played civ III. Talked on the phone. Looked at (but did not buy) plane and train tickets.

It may sound frightfully boring, but it's amazingly relaxing.

Please forgive the long post. And also, the spell checker still isn't working. I can't decide if it's a blogger problem or a firefox problem, but I don't care. You can deal. :)

UPDATE: I got distracted from posting this by a phone call from my aunt. I will be at the evening performance of Pacific Overtures on Sunday Dec. 19th. Yay!!!!!! No plans yet for Saturday or Monday. Suggestions still welcome.

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