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A Woman's Guide To The Universe

Crack Cocaine For Office Supply Freaks

I’m one of those office supply freaks. A hoarder of dried up highlighters, markers, notebooks, and pens. Everyone has an addiction. Mine is seeing, touching, and buying organizers, planners, pens, and journals.

Just looking at a picture of a new planner or organizer makes me yearn for something. I don’t even know what it is. It’s the vision of a writer in a garret, like Emily of New Moon, writing by candlelight.

There will never be a picture of someone tapping on a computer that’s nearly as romantic as that. Computers don’t run on candlelight, for one thing. And Starbucks isn’t exactly a garret in an old farmhouse.

As for office supply stores, they’re my drug dealers. I can walk through Macy’s pretty much ignoring everything in front of me, especially if I do what I do when I’m at home, which is not wear my glasses.

This is a no-fail formula for a clean house.

Occasionally, I’ll make a mistake and wear my glasses to the kitchen or bathroom. It’s amazing how dirty the house gets just from one walk through. I don’t break a sweat cleaning it though. I just take my glasses off and leave them by the sofa, like the good housekeeper I am.

This is a good reason not to get that laser eye surgery. If you do that, the only way to clean your house afterwards would be to wear your old glasses. You’ll trip over the rugs, but it’ll be worth it to avoid breaking out the vacuum.

I had a Filofax organizer I bought thirty years ago in London, and it finally fell apart. Like Roy Rogers did with Trigger when he stuffed and mounted him (on what, I’m not sure) I have not shuffled off the mortal coil of my old planner. The leather cover is still there in a box, waiting for me to give it a decent burial.

crack cocaine for office supply freaks on chezgigi.com

The journal! The drug of choice!

If all I need is new pens, I’ll come home from Office Depot with pens, a new notebook, maybe a new planner, too, and a hand sanitizer that clips to your purse. I already have organizers, planners, journals, and notebooks with blank pages left in them that I bought on previous trips to the office supply store.

Do I want hard sided, soft sided, portable, compact, desk size, snap closure, zipped? Do I just want a simple composition book like we used to use in school, to fill with notes and scrapbook items?

Do I want one of those planners that looks like something Lewis and Clark carried across mountains, plains, and deserts and has a leather string wrapped around it? It’s filled with crabbed misspellings from a pen that had to be dipped in an ink pot.

Yes! I want one of those, too. The writer is dressed in a fabulous belted khaki jacket, and is writing in this notebook outside his tent.

Maybe it’s a woman writer dressed in a satin Victorian dress with petticoats and boots, laced to the knees. She’s a liberated woman, and since she’s sitting in the middle of the Sahara desert, she’s wearing just the petticoats and her be-ribboned bustier, one foot propped on her knee, smoking a cheroot.

The hussy.

victorianIf you believed that I can walk through Macy’s unscathed, I have a bridge in Brooklyn I’d like to sell you.

The result of all this organization is that I can’t find important notes and phone numbers I need, because I don’t know which planner or notebook I’ve written them in.

Meanwhile, back at Office Depot or Staples, I’m confronted in the organizer aisle by a man in a trench coat, White Out smeared around his nose, sniffing noisily, and trying to sell me calendar pages for my day planner. He’ll whip open his trench coat and show me a Post It selection.

All of this stuff is the cocaine of office supply freaks. Each new planner holds the promise of exciting social commitments, new job assignments, classes in pottery or quilting you’ve been meaning to take, dates you’re going on as soon as you lose weight, the date you’ll start the diet that will lead you to dates with great men, trips you’ll be taking where you’ll gain back the weight and never meet anyone except retired people from Detroit.

Walk away fast from the man in the trench coat, and slip around the corner to the pen aisle.

Oh, my.

Row on row of pimping pens and pencils hanging on sexy rods will beckon coyly. They are chock full of the ideas you’ll write in the blank pages of your new day planner or notebook.

(I told you to get away from that guy in the trench coat.)

There’s the buff rolling gel pen full of bold black ink that has your new novel stored in it’s round, smooth barrel. It refuses to cough it up, because you are always using the computer.

buff pens beckon coyly

Oh, the computers! They are the big guns of the office store, and will lead you down the rose scented path of blogs and big business.

I have to go buy some candles and an ink pot, now. I just wish the ink didn’t ruin my computer when I dip it in that little pot.

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12 Comments

  1. Mary Nelson

    I wish I could leave my glasses off but I fall over cats. And furniture.

    Hey, little lady, I got a whole pack of multi colored highlighters, just for you.

    • I fall over stuff, too, but it LOOKS clean! I’m on a tear today. I got up in a mood, and I want to live by myself, just me and Sugar, in a little trailer or motor home. I’m so sick of dealing with all the junk that piles up. I’m throwing stuff away. Good stuff. Unused stuff. It’s gone. When the guys get home tonight, the house will be empty.

      Highlight THAT!

  2. Wolf Man

    It is so wonderful to read the prose from your Universe once again. It would only seem logical that an English major would be drawn to writing implements as a drug addict to cocaine. But you do it with such joy and abandon. It lifts the heart and relaxes the mind.
    Is it any wonder I Love you so. See you tonight my Lupine Lovely.

    • Thank you, honey! You certainly kissed the blarney stone today. I do like the Implements of Writing and Recording. I love you, too!

  3. Mary Nelson

    All right, you two! I hope Gigi left the bed in the house!

    • I don’t think he read my comment to you, but when they came home, I had bookmarked RV’s on Craigslist. Snort. Sigh. I’d go for a couple of days at this point, up to Tecopah or somewhere, and then come home, happy and tired. A little gypsy wagon would do. A place where you can sit at the table and wash the dishes at the same time. Two dishes. One for Sugar, one for me.

  4. Mary Nelson

    Only really need one dish. You eat, Sugar eats and cleans it up.
    But I know exactly what you mean. Make the world go away! And all the stuff in it . Someday.

    • That’s right! I used to hand Brandon or Don a dish she’d ‘cleaned’ and say “This one doesn’t need washing.” Oh, they think I’m hilarious. I found the cutest little trailers and one was a package deal for less than 10k for the truck AND a nice trailer. I’m off!

  5. Mary Nelson

    A friend actually did that. She sold, donated, gave away most all her stuff and bought one of those mini van camper things. And drove around until she found a place she wanted to stop for a while. Last I heard she was someplace in Eastern Arizona. Sigh

    • Sigh. The Black Hat Ladies, their dogs, and the freedom of the road. I saw one with the cutest blue trailer, little solar panels set up outside, and her nice SUV to pull it. My Elderly Aunt, 94 now, and my uncle had a trailer and they’d go to hunting camps, and down to Indio every year. She never got to go the places she wanted to go to. At one time, she was doing water colors and photography. She seemed happy about it, but still. Another generation. I’d have put my foot down.

      Don really wants to retire and if he ever gets his conversion engine made, we could take off most months of the year and no gas expenses! We might keep this house as a home base, I don’t know. And my inflatable hot tub is going with us!

  6. Mary Nelson

    Inflatable hot tub will travel! I’d have put my foot down too, at least trade places on occasion.
    My friend is an artist, so she goes where she’s interested in painting.
    We’d kinda like that, but we’re somewhat tied down by doctors these days. Ah well.
    And three cats. Yes, we added another one. Orange tabby named Mike Hammer. (We have a detective theme going) going to known as Mikey, I can tell. And when he stops spending quite so much time under the bed, I’ll get pictures. I made the mistake of walking by the cats waiting for adoption at PetSmart. Silly me. Cat lady in training.

    • That’s great! And three cats can travel by RV, too. I think. And if you run out of fuel, the cats can pull the motor home! Like a chariot. Fred Paul and I had a whole Mike Hammer thing going on last year. It was funny.
      Well, maybe soon for both of us. You may relax in my little spa and we’ll drink wine by starlight.

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