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So it’s 7:20 this morning, and I have just been briefed on the glamorousness of my day’s work: asessing how many 3’x12′ sections of 8″ thickness wall foam will be needed for freezer construction (minus entrance door spaces – of course). Once asessed, I can call three different foam wall vendors, providing square footage and requesting bids.

Bossman leaves the room, and I’m sitting with my head cocked to one side, hoping if I stare at the AutoCad plot picture that way, some brain matter that remembers how to do geometry will ooze into place, and I will find the brilliant college grad hiding somewhere under the film of understimulation.

People start speedwalking around the office, and I catch the word ‘ammonia’ dropped a couple of times before a stealthy wall of chemical stench smacks me in my geometry-puzzled face. Tears and mucus run scared from their respective facial real estate, and I bust down the stairs and out into the fresh sleety air. Semi-official evacuation roll call says we’re all accounted for. My straightened hair on the other hand, is defeated in seconds by sky water.

D and I spend the morning clearing neighbor business people away from the building and procuring lunch from town for 22 since the galley is inhospitably fumey. At noon, the work area is declared “safe,” but I decline the opportunity to sit in an office where I can’t take a full breath without my eyes and throat stinging. Somehow it seems counterintuitive.

Instead I return home, pull on some sweat pants, burrow under a blanket on the couch (with afore-mentioned sleet kicking the crapbaskets out of the metal roof) and finish the brilliant last chapters of Christopher Moore’sA Dirty Job .” (Thank you Ms. Megan Mao for the introduction). I love ammonia days! “Dirty Job” is a phenomenal read – go out and buy it now or may the book’s fourteen-inch badgers with ham torsos and renaissance regalia stab you with their tiny cutlasses.

I like reading books and lying on the couch, and I’m questioning my agreement to work at the seafood plant for most of the next year with only a couple weeks off. It’s just not how I do (especially if this business with the noxious gas clouds keeps up). Contrastingly, I’m feeling uncharacteristicly productive and non-broke. I have been working on Sharon’s biography fairly consistently. My goal is 1,000 – 2,000 words a day which would give me a reasonable time frame for finishing the book within 2009.

I have also been working on some sweet art projects/potential Christmas presents, and I hope this agreement to work doesn’t compromise my budding craft skills. Since I’ve pretty much agreed to be here, I suppose the next order of business is establishing Alaska residency, so I can get in on those sweet, sweet permanent fund dividends next year. Everyone just got their checks for over $3,000 per person. That could buy me a lot of reading, couch-lying, non-ammonia time.