The A/C Epic

Thirst Quencher

{image via flickr)

For those of you that follow me on twitter, or know me personally, know that I have had trouble with my A/C since coming home from my memorial day weekend in hot hot hot New Orleans. Well let me explain it to those who are interested.

The A/C was turned on that weekend and worked fine. Monday (Memorial Day) it stopped working and we called a dispatcher to send us a tech from their list of providers. He was scheduled to come the next day. Clearly, I was upset and just made a rash move. Get me somebody, ANYBODY! ITS HOT.

Tuesday comes and the tech’s name is Ryan. Nice guy. Tells me I need to clean my 2 year old condenser outdoor unit and some more freon. Sounds like a simple fix right? I am relieved that that was it. Well, there isn’t a hose near by, so he has to acid wash it. Oh and by the way its a big unit, he needs to add 2 lbs of freon. I don’t know any better, so I’m like ok sure. Do what you have to do man. It’s hot. He gets it working, I sign the receipt, and pay the man about $600. Tech fee, labor, acid wash, freon. I get it. He leaves.

30 minutes later it stops working.

You can bet I called him back asap. He comes back about two hours later, and he fiddles around a little bit more. It works, he leaves.

Saturday comes, and it stops working. He doesn’t work weekends. Week of June 4th. He comes back one of the days this week. He is here for a few hours. It starts working again. He tells me to check this pipe outside, and make sure it doesn’t freeze over. If it freezes over, then call him, that is a bad sign and I will have to replace everything. He also tells me that if it doesn’t work, hes going to have to order new parts, new everything. So if it stops blowing cool air, let him know. He leaves.

The AC works for the rest of the week and THANK GOODNESS works through the weekend, when I had my family over for my nephews graduation. However, come Sunday after everyone leaves…the AC stops working.

Monday June 11, the tech gets called. He says cool, he’ll order the parts. Tuesday I realized he didn’t give me an estimate. He says that he doesn’t know until the company gives him in the invoice (really?WTF is that? I’m not that unfamiliar to really think that’s how it works)…. He doesn’t contact again for the rest of the week, nor does he pick up his phone. Call his main office, and they tell me they won’t send another tech because Ryan is already familiar with our case and the new techs wouldn’t. Wow. Great communication system you have there AAA Repairs. Frustrated by friday and a hot weekend. I’ve had enough.

Understand me, the reason why I kept calling and going back to this company and this tech is because, I PAID MONEY. And their receipt says I have a 90 day warranty. He needed to fix this, its his responsibility. Well, I was so fed up by the weekend that I took it as “I paid that money for freon and wash”. After I accepted that as a loss, it was time to let Ryan know that he’s off the books.

Called Monday June18. He didn’t pick up (Surprise, Surprise). He gets a message saying I no longer needs his services.

Tuesday no call back. Leave another message. IT IS SO HOT TODAY. After working 10 hours I go home to a steaming oven called my condo and I want to cry (and maybe I did a little bit, but you can’t tell because I was sweating and crying). Enough is enough. Remembering that I used Service Magic to find my locksmith (who was wonderful by the way) I decided to take this problem to them to find me a competent A/C guy.

Valpo Services calls me in about 5 minutes. Says he can come the next morning 9am. I’ve already missed a lot of work dealing with the other guy, can he come earlier? I hold my breath. He says sure, when? And I reply, how early are you willing to come? 7am it is!

Right on time Walter shows up. He resets it. The a/c is working, so he can’t diagnose it. Tells me to call again when he comes out, he won’t charge me for the next trip. I go to work. When I get home, the A/C is down again. He comes right away. Can’t get it to work, he has to go to the company Carrier, to see if my warranty is still good. I will need a new reversal valve, he wants to make sure its covered since my unit is fairly new. He doesn’t want me to spend money that I don’t have to (hm, I like him already!).  Another night with no A/C.

Thursday comes, and he calls back. The unit is covered under warranty,everything except the reversal valve. Thats what he suspects is broken. He wants to try out one more thing before having to resort to buying a new unit. (He suggested buying a whole new unit for a couple hundred more than, just the reversal valve. A new unit would only cost a little bit more, but it would come with freon and all warranty covered parts for 10 years). He puts a booster on my unit. If it doesn’t work, he won’t charge me for the parts and labor since I would have to buy a new unit (what a good man). Worked for about an hour and it went down again. Call him back. Looks like I will need a new A/C. He comes back, I fill out the paperwork, and he’ll be back to install tomorrow.

I have A/C. The new unit works, and he will install a new thermostat. I am still holding my breath, but Walter and Valpo Services has my confidence and if anything goes wrong, he will be the man I’ll call.

Wish me luck that this drama is over and I can keep cool the rest of summer!

Who’s Bad: Michael Jackson Tribute Band

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It’s been 3 years (yesterday) since the legendary Michael Jackson died too soon. Say what you want, all the scandals and negative things about how he lived his life, but you can’t take away the fact that he was an amazing performer, and pretty much shaped pop music. Usher, Justin Timberlake, Chris Brown… all their dance moves all their inspirations…Michael Jackson. I remember watching MTV (when they still played music videos) and how excited I would get when one of his videos would come on. You could probably get his videos on demand right now through your cable provider.

To this day, I am still scared of the Thriller video.

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Last Friday, the boo, and my girlfriends went to see Who’s Bad, a Michael Jackson Tribute band at 930 Club on U Street. I saw them on MJ’s 1 year anniversary of his death. They are amazing, like it will bring tears to your eyes. They have not one, but 2 performing “Michael’s” one’s extremely good at dancing, and the other extremely good at singing. (That just goes to show how crazy good the real Michael is, it takes two people to make this show AMAZING.) It’s like he never left us. There show is better than ever. I can’t wait until they come back around again. Hopefully next year around the same time.

Tips if you go:

  • Wear dancing shoes
  • Fedora, and sparkly glove encouraged
  • They pull ladies up on stage to dance, so if you want to be up there, get there early to be in the front

I am still on a Michael Jackson kick, so I’ll be singing all week. Sorry to those around me 😀
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MakeUp Mondays: Flat to Fab Mascara

Remember how I mentioned before that my daily makeup (if any) is just lips and lashes? Well, to make getting out the door even faster, I’ve discovered a new product. A mascara that curls your lashes for you. And no I’m not talking about back in the day, when they had wonder curl, and you can “see” your lashes curl right before your eyes like the commercial. I mean you swipe on that first layer and they hold up in the way you swipe it. I usually spend a minute curling my lashes at the base then moving up to the tip to make sure the lashes don’t droop, but now I don’t have to. My new quick start mascara is Hard Candy Flat to Fab in BLACKEST BLACK.

A couple of swipes and I’m out the door. I love IT! But it’s not water proof so don’t use this as your beach/pool wear.

 *I was not compensated for writing this review, I just like to share my review in case you needed something like this in your life too!

Father’s Day Crab Boil

I spent Father’s day with my big brother and his wife, my nephew and the dog. Here’s the visual recap.

Great weekend with family. Next up, going to the OBX for the first time!


Soy Hoison Orange Salmon

Yes. I did it. I finally cooked a fish right…without battering and deep frying it. What we’ve got here is an oven baked salmon over baby bok choy with a side of shrimp. Here’s how I did it.

2 5oz pieces of salmon
Baby Bok Choy
Grated Fresh Ginger
1 Orange
Soy Sauce
1 Green Onion
Ground coriander

How I did it:
Preheat the oven to 425F. In a foil, lay down a enough bok choy to place the salmon on top (each piece gets its own foil). In a separate bowl, mix zest from the whole orange, about 2 tbsp of fresh grated or minced ginger, 2 tbsp of hoison sauce, 1 tsp of soy sauce, the whole orange’s juice and the thinly sliced green onion. Stir well. Spoon the sauce over the salmon to fully coat, sprinkle a little bit of salt, then rip a few pieces of cilantro and top the salmon. Shake some ground coriander on top, then wrap it up into a package in the foil, place the two packages on a cookie sheet and bake for about 15 minutes (my pieces took 18 minutes to cook so it depends on the size of your fish), or until the center of the salmon is opaque.

This was adapted from We Are Not Martha They have more pictures and detailed instructions. But you know me, I barely followed it and put my love into it. So that always makes it better right?!

For the shrimp I just rubbed some seasoning on it and threw it in the oven until pink. SERVE WITH RICE.



Lip Obsession

I don’t know what it is, but red lips are hot. I like looking at them on other people. I ask people all the time how they wear it. I’m so jelly. I have huge lips. Sometimes I feel like they take over my face. I’m pretty much just lips and lashes. I was scared to draw attention to them. A little self conscious even. My upper lip is significantly larger that my bottom lip. Someone once told me that wasn’t normal. So I’ve just been wearing lip balm.

NOT ANYMORE. Thanks to the help of Kimberly and Vitya (thanks for the tips ladies!) and encouragement from the boo. I had many random nights of just wearing lipstick at home to get used to see MYSELF in it. I finally eased into it. Starting with wearing it to work early in the morning and only applying it once, and let it wear out. To wearing it out at night to dark places…I am finally comfortable. FINALLY. Took a few months but HELLO WORLD. MY LIPS ARE HERE.

But because of that, now I buy too many lipsticks/stains. I think I will start sharing my reviews on my current obsession in case it would be helpful to someone else who wants to join the dark(er lips) side.

Drag Show: Golden Lantern

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To continue with our streak of live performances for the weekend. The ladies were invited to a drag show Saturday by Miss Monique’s alter ego, Michael.
Britnee Aluxander
We got to Tubby’s Golden Lantern a little early after dinner, so we had some time to kill, especially since they moved the regularly scheduled 10pm show to 11pm due to some country line dance convention (yes they really have those). This is were we met Britnee Aluxander.

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She became leader of the pack for the night, leading us to her favorite hot spot Bourbon Pub where she performs weekly. As we were walking the streets and exploring the area, we stopped in on a few ghost tour groups and listened a little (well, I ran away because I’m not having a ghost follow me home). Then we headed back to the show!
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The show’s platform was pretty much as follows, 5 drag queens, performing country songs, they each get about 3 songs each, with a costume change for a 2 hour show. As they sing they walk around and interface with the crowd, and this is where you can pull out your ones and tip them. It was hard to believe that these women were actually men! Beautiful with sparkle and shine, we were all mesmerized.

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The Golden Lantern was very welcoming to everyone, male, female, gay or straight. They had a community vibe and gave us the best southern hospitality I’ve ever had at a bar. Afterwards there was plenty of line dancing for everyone all around!

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