Her Ladyship

Notes from the gutter.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Long-time Ladyship friends know my quest for the ultimate spicy dish. I have had numerous meals at restaurants where I've ordered the waiter to bring it "hot hot HOT. As hot as they can make it, and then double that!" where the chef ends up peering around the corner to see what kind of lunatic is eating in their restaurant. And it never is hot enough.

Last night, though, I got schooled.

I had read that the Indian military was looking to weaponize a chili that has over 1,000,000 Scoville units, and joked that perhaps THAT would be enough for me. The Texan decided to do a little research and found a sauce that is supposed to contain it. So an innocuous-looking bottle was awaiting me when I came home from work last night.

I tried a wee bit on the tip of my tongue. It spread rapidly to the back of my throat but wasn't too bad, so I figured it would be safe to sparingly spread some on my sandwich. WRONG. Oh god, was I wrong about that.

I couldn't eat it. Could. Not. Eat. It. At all. So I tried rinsing off the cheese. No go. Maybe warming it up in the microwave? Nope. Increasingly desperate, I rinsed off the meat. Not even. I ended up throwing it out because my entire throat was on fire at that point and I couldn't imagine making it worse.

So I sat there, gasping for air, as my throat, lips, nose, and then nasal cavity went numb. After about half an hour I could breathe normally, but my lips were still feeling it hours later when I went to bed, which I am prepared to accept was psychosomatic more than anything else.

Moral of the story: that tiny bottle will last me a lifetime, as I cannot see using more than one drop at a time.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Done and done!

And I mean DONE. We finally paid our taxes....for the 2008 tax year. Hooray. That nearly-a-year-long payment plan is over.* Now we can focus all those extra wads of dough (ahem) toward paying off the 2009 tax year. Which is a MUCH smaller bill, but still. Note to my patient readers: always, ALWAYS pay your taxes in quarterly installments if you are self-employed. Trust me, the shock is a helluva lot less when you do it that way.

* Some more unsolicited advice: should you decide to go this route, DO NOT SET UP AUTOMATIC PAYMENTS. I cannot emphasize that enough. It took the IRS five, yes, *five* months to set this up. I shudder to think of how long it will take to turn it off. Am seriously considering changing banks just to avoid the hassle.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

File this under the "Why Didn't I Think of This?" category

Yesterday, en route to the office, I joined the normal crush of people on the red line platform at Gallery Place, when I noticed a few backpackers who were damn near bent over, trying to counterbalance their bags. One of them was a fairly young girl who had a backpack nearly as big as she was, plus she had a sleeping bag rolled up and hooked up to the back. She was almost at a 45 degree angle and I looked at her, trying to determine when exactly she'd tip over backwards, when I noticed something perched on top of her bag.

It was a black cat with white paws, harnessed up and leashed off and quite possibly the most mellow cat I've ever seen. If you've had the pleasure of travelling through Gallery Place during rush hour, you can imagine how crowded the platforms get; if you haven't had that pleasure, imagine a surly crowd five people deep and about a 100 yards long who are late for work and annoyed at the metro. But this cat was just taking everything in stride: it rolled on its back, kneaded the bag a little, walked around, allowed itself to be petted, and generally seemed to be enjoying life from top of the backpack. I thought maybe the train rushing in would startle it but the cat didn't even appear to notice. I *never* would have thought to go backpacking with my cat; I know what I'm doing this summer! (Not really - I think I'm past the stage where I can put up with backpacking/hostels/that whole scene. Plus Shrapnel is needed at home to patrol the kitchen and kill mice. He got four more last week, and yes, we have the exterminator coming out. AGAIN. Third time's the charm, we're hoping. The worst thing was that the cat keeps bringing his trophies to me and what I feared the most happened on Friday: I stepped on one. I thought at first it was one of the dog's toys and then realized JESUS JESUS MOUSE. Fortunately I was wearing slippers, because if I'd been barefoot, I would still be bleaching my foot. Gah. Anyways, where was I? Right: no backpacking trips for the cat and me in the near future.)

Monday, March 08, 2010

And so it begins

I sat outside at lunch today - couldn't have been more than 40 minutes, tops. And I am presently sporting an attractive pinkish twinge to my skin. First sunburn of the season! *Now* can we assume that winter is over? Please???

I realized that Snowmaggeddon was a month ago and yet we still have piles of dirty snow everywhere. Whereas The Texan and I went up to NYC two days after they had received a couple of feet of snow and were shocked to realize that some cities have ways in which to shovel and then get rid of snow. Seriously, we thought maybe we'd just been watching the news reports and gotten NYC mixed up with another snowstorm, because New York had maybe a hint of snow, but that was it, and almost every sidewalk we saw had been shoveled AND salted.