Thursday, January 8. Weather: Cold but Clear. Meljean is still “woot”ing. (See previous entry. She really likes peanut-butter-and-banana sandwiches — and thanks to everyone for their comments and congratulations!)
The phone rings. It is the FIL, reminding Meljean that she was driving him to the U-Haul place after she drops the tot off at pre-school. Meljean says, “Oh yeah, I didn’t forget” and hangs up and says “shit!”
The e-mail chimes. Editor’s wonderful assistant asks, “Did you send your page proofs for WILD THING?” and Meljean writes back “Of course…” while checking the tracking number and sees that although the express package was sent to NY on Feb 2nd, it hasn’t arrived. Meljean says, “motherfucking shit!”
Meljean calls the USPS. Yells at automated voice recognition system. Hopes it never becomes a self-aware AI that will crush her to pieces. Talks to a nice lady, who gives her the number for a nice lady in NY. They will look for it.
Editor’s wonderful assistant says, “Did you make copies?” and Meljean sobs because it is the ONE TIME she didn’t, because she finished them up early and already entered the changes into her Word document, and on the day she sent them she was running late anyway and since she’s NEVER had a problem with a package getting there before (on time is a different story, but it always arrived) she thinks, “Okay, I’ll just send them out.” Now, Meljean thinks: I’m such a stupid shit. But! at least the Track Changes function was on when she made the changes, and those are dated, so she can make a list of changes and send … even though she doesn’t have page numbers (which would be really great for proofs.)
Meljean goes to pick up U-Haul, has to be the one who backs the huge freaking van up to the front porch stairs because she’s white and from a redneck area of Oregon, and we all know they’re good at backing huge shit up. She only hits the porch once.
Meljean realizes that NOTHING IS READY TO BE MOVED. OVER HALF THE PACKING STILL NEEDS TO BE DONE.
Meljean and Bobby start packing shit.
Into the U-Haul!
Midnight: all stuff moved, U-Haul returned.
FIL says, “can you still drive me to the airport at 4:30 am tomorrow?”
Meljean says, “Oh, sure.” Inside, she cries. Then she realizes that although the pages with the corrections written on them are gone, she still has all of the OTHER pages, so she just has to look for the missing page numbers, figure out what changes needed to be made in that little section by matching it to the changes in the Word document, and make up the list.
Luckily, there were very few typos in the original corrected pages, so mostly it’s just a matter of word choice updates. The few pages without corresponding changes in the Word document likely had typos, and Meljean has just had a shot of coffee, so she remembers most of them pretty well, and the ones she doesn’t remember she can make a note like: there was a typo on page 164.
At one point, Meljean must have laid (lain?) down to rest, because she wakes up at 4:15 on the floor behind the sofa.
At 4:30, Meljean drives FIL to the airport. He tells her that she needs to replace her windshield wipers. Meljean had just thought her contacts were blurry.
Meljean buys coffee at airport, and remembers why she NEVER buys coffee at Coffee People when after one sip the mocha leaves the taste of ass in her mouth. Dumps out coffee, sobbing. Drives home, singing at top of lungs to stay awake. Ironically, one of the songs is Rage Against the Machine’s Wake Up (see note above about AI gone rogue).
Meljean finishes list of corrections. Sends it out. Taste of ass coffee still in mouth, even after brushing teeth. Meljean is oddly reminded of Mr. Bear, her sophomore English teacher who always had an insulated coffee mug in his hand and the worst coffee breath she’d ever smelled. It strikes her now that Mr. Bear is the reason she resisted coffee for so long.
Meljean still associates GREAT EXPECTATIONS with coffee breath.
Hours later, Meljean wakes back up, and gets to work. After writing a blog entry.