this morning i went to the mass general hospital to get my wart taken care of. i made a brief stop at the harvard square post office to mail off my home owner insurance and cellphone bill, got a booklet of new 37¢ stamps. arriving at mgh via subway i made a beeline to the 6th floor, internal medicine. the hospital referral system is so bureaucratic. the purpose of my appointment was just so i could get a referral to see a dermatologist, no actual removal procedure was to take place today. the covering doctor also took my blood pressure when i told him about my hypertension. i was 130/80, normal. i seem to have my silent killer under control these days. at one point one of the secretaries came in to ask about something on another patient's charts. "oh...that's...skin cancer," replied my doctor. after the secretary left he turned to me with a smile, "oh, but not you!" i like my doctors to be as nonchalant as possible when chatting about life threatening diseases. i went to the dermatologist office on the 4th floor to make an appointment (the secretary was involuntarily looking at my face to see the wart, i amused him by turning my head so he could get a better look, he laughed, embarassed). after i got the appointment, i went back to the 6th floor for an insurance referral, so my dermatologist visit at the end of the week will get covered. with all my hospital paperwork out of the way, i went back to harvard square.
at harvard square i made a visit to the fleet bank. seems like i make a visit every week. i went in to report an additional charge on my card dated july 2nd, when there was that suspicious $3600 transaction from florida. while checking my account online over the weekend, i noticed a $99 transaction made from london (i've never been to england before, nor do i do business with english people). the girl at the help desk was very pretty (i think fleet bank has some sort of discriminatory practice where they only hire attractive people), but she had a lazy eye, which in her case made her more intriguing because it looked like she was involuntarily winking at me. i leaned my elbows on the counter, hands cradling my head, just watching her talk. i had a seat in the leather waiting couch, and a few minutes later she came back out with a number she told me to call to make my claim.
at wordsworth i was trying to find books by augusten burroughs, after reading a few funny excepts on amazon.com. couldn't find any (nor did i ask, i have a real problem asking strangers for help), but in my browsing (the bookstore was pretty empty so early in the morning, 10am, perfect browsing atmosphere) i came across guns, germs, and steel: the fate of human societies by jared diamond. what sold me was the chapter titled "why china is chinese," i just had to get it after skimming a few pages. i've read his book the third chimpanzee, which set out to show that chimps and humans are actually very similar.
i tried to see if i could catch the matinee showing of the salton sea at the brattle theatre, but it turns out for the rest of the week (it's only showing this week) the earliest matinee is 3pm, and the price for the matinee is only a dollar less than regular price (unless your a brattle theatre member), so it doesn't really matter when i go. suddenly i felt hungry and tired, so i opted to go home instead, catch the bus back to belmont at 11am, which i can only do because of my unemployment. i grabbed a breakfast sandwich and a small coffee from dunkin' donuts before getting on the bus, then i used my bag on my lap as a table while i read my new book, not caring that i'd get motion sick reading on a moving vehicle.
back in belmont i was on the phone making phone calls. first to at&t broadband, where they said i owned like $40 for cable even though i signed up for the special 100 free days of digital cable package. turns out the bill is correct, i am getting free digital, just not the $40 worth of basic cable. i didn't think at&t could screw me over but i guessed wrong. okay, we'll see who has the last laugh. at&t and i are no longer friends! then i was on the phone with fleet bank, calling the number that girl gave me (which turned out to be wrong, but i called regular customer service instead and was able to get through). my fleet experience was much better, the woman on the other end said i'd get my $99 back within 10 days after i sign some forms they'd be sending me.
middle of the afternoon i was back in cambridge again. i took a quick walk to shannon's apartment across the street in somerville to deliver her some software action, bumped into her coming back from her interview, got a quick tour of her place, pet her dogs, including the passive aggressive pekingese. then when i came back to the condo my father and i were sawing the unused steel pipes hidden in a corner of the master bedroom. these pipes date back to the days when the house as a whole used radiator heating instead of forced air, which is what it is today. it took my father 30 long minutes to saw one pipe in half. at 5pm the contractors showed up, and after explaining the problem to them, i took out a power saw and in less than a 1 minute they had both pipes cut and removed. zuka explained what he'd be fixing tonight, a little bit more drywalling, but mostly sanding, which means more dust. oh the dust! it gets into everything, when i got back to belmont i threw my clothes into the hamper and took a shower to wash all the dust off.
and in block watch news, during my sentry duty by my living room window, i saw a neighbor of mine moving in (i wasn't sure until i left the house, otherwise i would've helped her, she had glasses), and i saw a broker showing a rental apartment next door to a young woman (she was neatly dressed, obviously one of those employed people). also my street seems to be a favorite road to travel for folks doing grocery runs at the star market across the cambridge/somerville line. i saw several neighbors hauling heavy grocery bags in both hands.