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Author Archives: Roya

possibly the most interesting man in Pittsburgh

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Upon returning from our brilliant vacation in Mexico, my furnace died.

Actually, it died while we were gone. I came home and my house was 51 degrees. Since I had a delayed flight and my car was dead when I finally got to it, my return home was later than I had planned and I was too tired to deal with it. S, who was watching my furry cat babies while we were away, left a note that she thought she messed up the thermostat. I was hopefully that was the only problem. No such luck.

So I called the heating and cooling guy who fixed my AC over the summer. He’s the guy who does work for my contractor boyfriend (not really my boyfriend but he’s done some great work on my houses and if I had more money I’d have him redo the whole place) so I figure he must be a good character with good rates.

Well the heating and cooling guy is certainly a character. Probably the most interesting man I’ve met in Pittsburgh. or anywhere for that matter.

On Wednesday evening, he was here for two hours. I think he did about 30 minutes of work, and the rest of the time he talked. And talked. And told me about how he used to have a great house that was foreclosed on. It was nice when he bought it, but great once he added to it. It had an in-ground pool, waterfall, outdoor kitchen, etc. His wife raised the kids and he ran a business.

His wife never worked until his large heating and cooling business went under because he was screwed by a very large job that never paid. She fell into a great job making good money and she told him to move out. So he went to live with his mother. She called and said come home. So he did. And within a month she had lost her job. He said it was okay and they’d make do. Then he learned that she found out she was being let go just a few days before she asked him to come home. Needless to say, the marriage didn’t last. So he’s back to living with his mother.

He tried to fix my furnace. He did a repair and told me to call him in the morning and let him know if the heat stayed on. We went to the ATM so I could pay him cash for the service call. Shady, I know, but I totally didn’t care because I had good stories and heat in my house.

I called him Thursday and left a message. He must have missed the message, but showed up at my door Thursday night to see if I had heat, which I didn’t. He started it again and tried another fix.

Thursday night I learned that he was reckless in his 20s. And he spent two years in jail for selling cocaine to major league baseball players. He loves baseball! He’s clean now and has been for a long time. From observation, he runs on caffeine and nicotine now.

He called Friday morning at 7:30 to check on the heat. Then came over. Quit simply, the furnace couldn’t stay on and since it was 18 years old, it wasn’t worth sinking more money into. So we went down to the wholesaler and I bought a new furnace. Then stopped at the ATM to give him $100 cash. He and a guy came over at 5:30 Friday night to install it. They were here until 11 p.m.

That’s when I learned he was an only child. His father was an Irish immigrant who was kind as can be until he had four drinks in him. That’s when he turned into a mean drunk who had to be fetched from the bar. He was raised to fight but is afraid of mice. His Italian mother once broke the neck of a mouse in front of him and his kids and to this day it gives him the creeps.

If I could make the time and commitment, I could write a novel about this guy. Others might be frustrated by his timing and rambling but I’m intrigued and fascinated.

I have a hard time with small talk and meeting new people because I’m so uncomfortable with who I am. That’s why I love meeting people who just put themselves out there and have no fear about showing anyone and everyone who they are. It’s a little crazy and totally inspirational.


Suck it, 2011!

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Okay. I shouldn’t be so belligerent seeing as there are still three days left in the year and I’ll be traveling the friendly skies on one of them. And my car is in the shop awaiting diagnosis. Still plenty of time left for 2011 to give me another wallop.

But really, I’m over you 2011. You were not kind to me and I’m ready for us to part ways. Some of the highlights:

  • I smashed the side of my car and, being the classy lady I am, waited 11 months to have it fixed, complements of my dad. Yepp. That’s right. A special X-Mas gift from father to daughter – a new passenger side door on a 2002 Mazda.
  • I went to Disney World for the first time ever at the age of 32. Since Andi and I were together it was tons of fun, but not the trip I had planned. I had ambitiously decided to train for the Disney Princess Half Marathon.  But injury kept me on the sidelines. It was an ambitious plan because, well, I don’t run. I suggest if you have any inclination to train for any kind of race that you make sure you actually like running before you register. Just sayin.
  • June offered another stay at the Shadyside Resort and Spa (AKA UPMC Shadyside Hospital). It was four glorious days of backless hospital gowns, gelatin dessert and tests. Third time was not a charm but the flowers from friends and family were lovely.
  • A psychic told me she was sad for my soul. Seriously.
  • My job. Read into that what you will.
  • General depression and disappointment. (I know, very vague and not parallel to the other items but it’s my blog entry and I’m leaving it that way.)

But I’m going into 2012 optimistic. Andi and I decided the best way to kick off a new year is to run away. So we’re going to the Riviera Maya for a week. It will be wonderful and fabulous and a brilliant start to what I have decided will be the best year ever. EVER. Adios, 2011.