Now that Erin’s on Christmas break we’re rushing about madly trying to get everything done. Odds of it happening = 50/50. In a move that was more hopeful than sane, I ventured out in the holiday traffic yesterday. I must say it was one of my finer driving performances, as I deftly avoided almost all the snarled traffic around Lancaster Mall on my way to OfficeMax and Borders.

No problems at OfficeMax, but Borders proved a frustrating and futile effort. Having looked up the book we wanted online first, I was perhaps overconfident that it would be in stock. After using Border’s computerized in-store search system I was certain that I must simply be overlooking the volume on the shelf. After 20-30 minutes of scanning books, I gave up and cornered the tattooed, facially pierced twenty-something guy who represented Borders only customer assistant in this holiday zoo. He went to the computer terminal I used, punched in some secret code, accessed a different inventory system and told me the book wasn’t in stock. Now it’s obviously not his fault, so I thanked him and headed on my merry way. But what is the point of having a web site and indeed a customer accessible inventory system if it doesn’t frickin’ reflect reality? I like Border’s ambience, but exactly how likely do you think it is that I will ever return if looking for a book? If your guess is anything above zero, try again.

So I took off for The Book Bin and Jackson’s books downtown. Using Silverton Road and a variety of twists and turns and alleys, I continued my traffic avoidance maneuvers (for which I really do deserve some kind of medal). In virtually no time at all I determined that neither store had what I was looking for and that we needed to re-think our Christmas plans as they related to this purchase. Man, I hate it when (and doesn’t have what I want. Odds of getting everything finished in time = 40/60.

I had hoped to send out Christmas cards this weekend. Hahaha….I’m an idiot. I searched through all my iPhoto images for a picture of Jonah that captured the holiday spirit appropriately, but him running around the park, smearing pudding on his face, stomping in puddles, climbing on the prone body of one of his parents…none of them really jumped right out and said, “Merry Christmas!” So we decided yesterday morning to use the timer on the camera to take a few family photos. What do you think the odds are that we were able to get all three of us to look good at once? Lower…lower…lower….

So maybe we’ll take some more shots this morning. I dunno. It turns out that a client needs my assistance up in Portland this afternoon, so my day is basically shot after about 11:45 AM. Odds of getting our Christmas stuff finished in time = 30/70. Keep tuning in over the next few days to watch the chance drop to 0/100.