Monday, February 6, 2023

Third Time is Not the Charm

Other than forgetting to take Blood Pressure medication two days in a row, waking up on Sunday to a reading of 166 over something or other, it was a great and productive weekend.

Saturday’s weather was perfect for walking, so I suited up, headed to the college campus to log in a few miles, test out the collapsible trekking poles — the third set I’ve purchased.

Finding something wrong with the first two sets — one had a joint locking issue, the second set was meant for short people and could not be adjusted to my arm height, not wanting the hassle of returning, both had been tossed in the trash.

The third set — the current ones, everything snapped into place per the diagram, so I assumed everything was hunky dory fine.

It wasn’t.

Third time was in no way the charm, because the collapsible poles kept collapsing on Saturday’s walk.

Is it me … Am I doing something wrong? thought I. This being the second set with locking issues, I began to think I was not connecting and tightening properly.

Looking at a few YouTube videos later that day, I couldn’t find anything I'd done wrong.

At any rate, where there’s a will there’s a way so, not wanting to waste money on another set, I decided to change the collapsible trekking poles to non-collapsible by crazy gluing all the joints.

Sunday’s weather was a lot less inviting than Saturday’s. It rained, so outside was wet and gloomy. Testing for staying locked, with crazy glue, will have to wait until outside is once again inviting.

After getting the BP down to 135 on Sunday, by taking the medication, passing on coffee in lieu of Saffron Tea, the day was spent catching up on recorded TV programs and crafting — mainly scrapbooking.

My personal Album is not only caught up but completed. Photos of activities I participated in last year are in the book — like Spa Day with my girls, The Mission Inn 5K, Halloween Costume parties here at the complex, my trip to Long Beach for Thanksmas. The last page ends the book with a fun little thing I did with the photo of Genie and I at bingo wearing outfits that could mix and match.

Somehow it felt like a fitting end — a place to end scrapbooking altogether, something I've been thinking about for a while because my scrapbooking no longer seems relevant.

Who but myself cares what I did in photos last year, the year before that, the year before that, so on and so forth.

With the family so fractured, no one talking to and/or getting along with each other, what’s the point with being the historian of sort. I've got all these albums of my life raising my girls and after; and I did all those albums of the grandkids growing up and, in someone's storage area, there's even an album or two of my mother's life, with photos of my now deceased brothers and sister and I when we were kids, but who now is around to care? Who's going to be around in future to care?

There's not enough crazy glue in the world to put this fractured family back together and, with everyone living their lives so differently, I'm not so sure it should be put back together — the theory of "Leave Well Enough Alone". However, the point is .... for whom am I continuing this scrapbooking thing?

No one cares.

No one is going to care.

As what's left of this family begin to die off, including myself, it's highly likely the albums will end up in a dumpster like Bonita's did.

So, this book is the last I'll do of my adventures.

The end page, where the video cuts off, is the fun thing I did with a photo of Genie and I at bingo wearing outfits that looked like they were meant to mix and match.

I titled the page "Genie and Shirley Paper Doll Cutouts", turned us into paper dolls and switched the outfits around, just as one would do with paper dolls.

The great grandson, now some seven months old, already has two albums so, when the one I'm currently working on (see cover page below) gets filled, it too will be the last I'll do of his adventures as well. I don't want to repeat what I did with the other kids — make a kazillion albums that eventually become no longer relevant.

In other news, after the police department posted that the body parts guy they were looking for had been located and identified, it was radio silence, no further information.

That kinda sucks to get us invested in this story — like who is this guy, how did you find him, where did the body parts come from, and then nothing; but I'll keep an eye out for further updates on the PD's page.

Friday, February 3, 2023


Catching a glimpse of my little stalker running around this afternoon, just in case my freakout over her coughing didn’t scare her away, I went on high alert — closed all the blinds to make it appear I was not inside.

Of course, the jeep is parked in its spot, but that doesn’t mean I'm not out walking somewhere.

I also put a mask by the door should she return and I, once again, chickened out on hiding/not answering.

However, it wasn’t one of my many glamour pandemic masks, but one of the holographic face shields I purchased from Mask Guy during the height of the pandemic.

If the freakout didn’t scare her away, a glimpse of this surely would.

During this morning's workout, Trainer asked if I’d seen the police bulletin. They were looking for a man that had dropped off human remains at the PD.

I’d not heard of the bulletin but, though interesting, nothing surprises me anymore. I just said, "People are getting sicker", and that was that.

Seated in the car after the workout, I saw a guy walking down the street with a machete in his hand.

Again, though it's not something I see every day, it was nothing that surprised me. However, I grabbed my phone and tried to get a photo for the blog.

I take a lot of photos everywhere I go. I mean a lot a lot. Most end up in the trash folder, but I take them just in case they turn into a blog post.

I wasn’t fast enough to capture the guy’s face, and the machete didn’t show up in the photos I took. So, I drove in the direction the guy was headed to try to capture him better, but he’d walked through the gas station and disappeared out of sight. Probably into the storm drain (I think that’s what you call those big deep concrete tunnels in the ground), where a lot of homeless in the area live.

Returning to the complex I thought no more about it. Almost deleted the photos because I didn’t get his face or the machete.

Later, I logged onto the laptop and looked for the bulletin Trainer was talking about.

There was a photo of the guy the PD was looking for.

The caption read "The man allegedly tried to put what appeared to be deceased animal remains and a lower jaw that resembled a human at the front desk of the San Bernardino Police Department station located on N. D Street. Officers attempted to locate the man outside of the station after he left, but were unsuccessful in doing so. After examination by the San Bernardino County Coroner's Office, the jawbone was determined to be that of a human. As they search for their man, officers are describing the man between the ages of 30 and 35 as 5' 7" tall, weighing around 160 pounds with black hair and a full beard and mustache".

The photo on the bulletin reminded me of the guy with the machete. Though I had no face in my photos, there was just something about how he carried his body — shoulders slumped. Also, the pants in the PD photo looked similar or the same as pants the guy in the photos I took was wearing.

The jacket on the guy I saw was different, but it could have been reversable.

At first, I poo pooed the notion they could be one in the same person, went on with my afternoon, but the thought never left my mind, so I went to the Online Reporting System the officers that gave the presentation here on Tuesday mentioned.

What a load of baloney about it being simple, and I couldn't find a category for what I was trying to report.

I decided to call the PD non-emergency number.

Another waste of time. A recording said the PD was closed.

It was only 1:30 in the afternoon so I knew it wasn’t closed.

Why do they make it so hard to do the right thing, thought I, as I decided to give up.

Besides, so much time had passed since I saw the guy that he could have walked to China by now, but something wouldn’t let me give up.

BTW, if you’re wondering why I didn’t call when I first saw the guy with the machete. At that time, in my mind, he was just a guy walking down the street with a machete. He wasn’t menacing anyone with it, so I wasn’t gonna be a Karen, call the cops, get him unalived or beat to hell just for walking with a weapon.

It wasn’t until an hour or so later, when I saw the photo of the guy the PD was looking for that I saw what looked like similarities, and then it took an additional half hour or so to get through the annoying reporting systems.

I ended up calling the City. They connected me with a non-emergency PD line. I gave them what info I had, texted the photos to the officer they directed me to send to and, having gotten that off my mind, went on with hiding from the little stalker.

What do you think? Is it the same guy?

Guy I saw

I wonder what or who is in the bag.

Lately, every day’s been an adventure.

Thursday, February 2, 2023

Caught Off Guard

My little stalker caught me off guard this afternoon.

Every time I heard a noise on the stairs last two days, I prepared myself to duck down — if the kitchen blinds were open and I was on the laptop, so I couldn't be seen. Thus far, it’s been delivery people for either myself or Next Door Neighbor.

Today, I didn’t see her on the complex, did not hear the footsteps coming up the stairs. It was just all of a sudden, around 5:00, there was knock knock knock knock on the door.

Caught completely off guard, I thought OH CRAP! then told myself Don’t answer, Don’t answer.

I tried not to but gave in, answered the door.

She didn’t hug me this time, just stood there awkward like.

Maybe she can feel my energy towards her has changed.

There were no words as I stared at her, she stared at me, I stared at her, she stared back at me.

Finally, it was "Can I come in?" and before I could answer she stepped inside and began looking around.

Trying to figure out what she was looking for I said "What???".

"Where’s the red one?"

Not understanding what she wanted, I said "The what?”.

"The red one … Where’s the red one?"

She meant the red bear she’d supposedly bought for me, but then took back.

"Do you mean Sunny? You took it back already".

She looked confused, said "Oh yeah" and began coughing.

"OH NOOOOOOOO!" said I as I panicked, went "Get out! Get out! Get out!" and shooed her out the door.

As she went flying down the stairs, I stuck my head out to say something to Grandma Talker.

Not seeing Talker, I asked, "Where is your grandma? Does she know you're here?"

I didn't get an answer but, as I reached for the Lysol to spray out the cooties, I heard the Talker's voice.

Granddaughter must have had a distressed look on her face because I could hear Grandma's concerned voice say, "What happened?".

I went down the stairs, saw Talker over by the bench with her best friend in the complex (A) and filled her in .... "She tried to give me cooties, coughed on me. Came all the way up here to try to make me sick".

Both Talker and A thought it was funny, began laughing, but Talker did tell granddaughter, "You can’t do that", as if she could help coughing. But don’t come around me if you’re sick.

At any rate, maybe the fact that I chased her off will be the end of this.

I can only hope, and I'd better not get sick.

Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Forbidden Rice

Saw a recipe on TikTok a few weeks ago for Spicy Salmon Rice Muffins, which appeared to be Sushi made in a muffin tin.

Worth a try, though I, as I'd not had sushi for a while and was craving it.

A few days later, I was watching Food Network’s The Kitchen where black rice was mentioned.

Never have I seen nor heard of black rice in my whole entire life.

Have you?

At any rate, I was sold on trying it when the chefs expounded its benefits — more fibers and nutrients than even brown rice, improves digestion and a good source of energy.

As for why it’s also known as Forbidden Rice is because it was once so valuable it was only served to royalty.

Times have changed. I got a 14.5-ounce container for $4.59.

Thinking black rice was probably better for me than sushi rice, I did some research and learned black rice could be turned into sushi rice simply by adding rice vinegar so, after this morning’s workout, I got started on Sushi in a Muffin Tin with black rice.

Due to my gut issues, I had to substitute olive oil for sesame, coconut aminos for soy, stevia for honey and spiced the marinade up with louisiana hot sauce instead of chili oil. Also, because my muffin tins are rather large, I cut about an inch off the corners for one big square, then filled with black rice and salmon.

The cut off ends of nori won’t go to waste. I’ll turn them into seaweed salad.

After 17 minutes in the oven, I added the avocado and a substitution for spicy mayo and had myself the most delicious lunch.

Felt a little difficult at first to handle, as the muffin kind of folds over like dolmas, but once I got the hang of it, they were so tasty that I pigged out.

What was meant to be lunch and dinner turned into lunch ........ period.

I can’t say if it was the black rice that made the dish so extra special delicious or the marinated salmon or a combination of the two, but I’ll get an idea of what flavor black rice added when I turn the leftover rice into breakfast fried rice tomorrow morning.

The wind began kicking up again late last night. At one point, I was in bed and saw a large white figure flying at my bedroom window.

Can’t say it didn’t give me little fright, as it looked like a ghost; but I quickly realized it was something the wind had kicked up.

It was rough going to this morning’s workout, with the wind trying to knock me down so, when I left the Pain Cave and was headed back, I was surprised to see Buttons out braving the wind.

There’s no stopping Buttons, who celebrated her 86th birthday this past Sunday. She said she was returning from Wii Bowling at the senior center. Tomorrow she’ll be back out and about attending a Writing Class.

Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Taking One for the Blog Team

A notice correcting the error in the first notice was posted by end of day yesterday. The Crime Free Meeting was scheduled for 10:00 AM this morning.

Chilly and windy outside, I nevertheless bundled up, took one for the blog team by heading down with the mantra to "stay quiet, just listen, don’t lose your cool".

On the way, I ran into the guy Apache tried to pick a fight with — over a woman, and ended up getting himself banned from the property.

Apache happened to be in the area the day he saw a female resident he’d gotten physically close to standing outside talking to the guy — let’s call him "P", lost his shiz, tried to fight P, called the woman a "Lying bitz", got talked down by Painted Rock Lady, who witnessed the scene, walked away mad and was told he was banned from the property everafter.

At any rate P has always been a complete gentleman, was just talking to the woman, as he does to all residents — male and female, but Apache’s jealousy just got the best of him.

As P and I walked to the Community Room, he said he himself was instrumental in having the cops come in and talk to us. That he’d been attending the every other Tuesday "Coffee with a cop" sessions at the clubhouse of the Golf Course and lobbied for them to come in and talk to us.

Today's session was relatively painless, except I couldn’t believe management actually brought donuts to a cop event.

You called it Paranormal John, but no one made jokes about it. Folks just enjoyed the donuts.

At any rate, I didn’t learn much from the session that the Grapevine hadn’t already alerted me to

The session started off with one of the two cops stressing the importance of knowing who our neighbors are, having each other’s phone number, looking out for each other.

He also emphasized to be leery of who we invite over. That something the cops deal with all the time is when people invited to spend time/stay over and ultimately become tenants. Then when wanted out, the cops can do nothing except suggest the eviction process as they are now residents, not trespassers.

Also, that sometimes the people you invite, like young people — nieces and nephews, invite their sometimes-questionable friends over, and problems are created for you and your neighbors.

Good point.

There was talk about the guys walking around all hours of the night knocking on doors.

I knew about the guys walking around, had not heard about knocking on doors.

For why?

For what?

P himself said he’d gotten such a middle of the night knock and, like a fool, opened the door where he saw a man who looked just as surprised to see P as P was to see him.

Seeing a tall bearded seemingly fit resident, instead of a little old lady, the guy ran off.

Several others reported having middle of the night knocks.

Then, of course, there was talk of catalytic converters being stolen from cars parked in the back lot area.

Not much was offered as a solution to anything, as there are no solutions.

Ring cameras were suggested. "Ring cameras are one of the best tools for law enforcement" said the other less talkative cop. They’d recently been able to solve a murder as the entire episode and identity of the culprit had been caught on Ring, said he.

More reporting of incidents was also suggested, as not much had been reported, except to management and those are not management issues. They are police issues.

That was a surprising revelation. I and others have been complaining for years that management doesn’t do anything, is negligent in its duty and responsibility to keep us residents safe when actually they have no such duty or responsibility.

In addition to Ring cameras, we were advised to take advantage of the Online Reporting System.

Good to know we don’t need to call the police emergency number or trek all the way down to the police department to fill out a report.

Someone mentioned seeing cop cars occasionally looping through the complex at night.

Those are "Extra Patrol" we were told. Officers on patrol sometimes come in and hang out as a deterrent.

One or two of the nonsensicals that so trigger me by their lack of importance and stupidity were brought up by residents — cars zooming up and down the street, homeless walking up/down the street, and P spoke up way too much, had too much to say, too often interrupting cop speak seemingly to thump his chest, expressing his friggin knowledge about anything/everything, but I stayed true to my mantra — I was quiet, just listened, stayed calm.

"It’s not a crime to be homeless" said the lead cop. "It can happen to any of us".

He also pointed out we are on the "main corridor, traffic is gonna be traffic".


After that, the cop said San Bernardino is a "high crime area" (not very comforting) but that, for the most part, our complex is very safe in comparison to other complexes surrounding us, and nothing anywhere is 100%.

I know and that’s the thing … there are worse places to be. Even the luxury buildings have issues with management and intruders.

When asked what exactly our Crime Free Housing Certification affords us …. "If there are fights, drinking, you are evicted within 72 hours".

Uuuuuuh, not exactly. I just mentioned a few posts ago about the battling OG’s.

Not only were they never evicted for their many battles, but they had no problem getting back in as residents.

Maybe it's because they were so well liked. On the other hand, maybe it’s because they have that "Privilege" thing a particular group is afforded.

By this time, we were 45 minutes into the session, a break was called — to discuss issues between ourselves and/or meet one on one with one of the cops. I’d heard enough and headed back to my unit, but not before Talker walked over and said her granddaughter asks about me "ALL THE TIME".

"Why … she’s turned into a stalker … what does she say?" asked I.

"How’s Shirley" she said and added "I can’t figure it out. What did you do?"

I wish I knew so I could undo it.

Monday, January 30, 2023

What’s Wrong with This Picture?

I’ve frequently blogged about how incompetent complex management is.

Just in case you doubted management is as incompetent as I've inferred, take a look at the notice posted to my door today, to the other 177 doors, and tell me what’s wrong with it.

It’s so obvious, how could they miss the most important information.

Once the calls come into the office for clarification, what management will do is reprint and repost.

Maybe this meeting is as a result of the information going around on the Grapevine about the man Buttons awoke to find in her unit and the two guys roaming the complex at night, going through the dumpsters.

Whatever the reason for the meeting, I won’t be wasting my time attending because I know these seniors. It’s going to be a bitchfest with some residents yacking on and on and on about things that don’t matter and/or committing other misdemeanors that get on my nerves, cause me to react.

Trust me. It’s happened before when there’s been a community meeting, and I don't need to be knocked off center at this time when so much really bad stuff is in the atmosphere.

I'll just find out, through the Grapevine, what was discussed.

In other complex news, heading out for this morning’s workout, I saw a carpet cleaning service working on the vacant upstairs corner unit. So readying for a new tenant has begun.

Will be interesting to see who the new tenant will be and how they fare inasmuch as things have not gone well for those who’ve moved into that bad energy unit.

Due to this morning’s Winter Storm Warning, I can’t imagine I’ll have to worry about some little someone running around outside, eventually making it up the stairs to knock on my door, so the lights are on and I’ve no need to hide this afternoon.

Saturday, January 28, 2023

No Escape

Yesterday was Bingo Friday.

Something told me there was a likelihood Talker would be babysitting my little Indian Giver Stalker and thus she’d bring granddaughter with her to bingo. That thought made me not want to attend.

Instead of skipping bingo altogether, I came up with a plan.

The plan was to first walk by the room with the rent check in hand, quickly scan the room and, if I saw my little stalker, I’d drop off the rent check then keep going — exit the side door, go run errands out of the area instead.

I did that — first walking by the door, glancing through while trying not to be obvious, didn’t see Talker or granddaughter so, after dropping the check into the rent slot, I returned and walked into the Community Room.

All of a sudden I hear "SHIRLEY!!!".


Then I see Talker’s granddaughter running towards me.

I utter out loud, "OH NOOOOOOOO!!!!".

I should have taken my time scanning to ensure the coast was clear.

Talker’s granddaughter wraps her arms around my midriff and hugs me.

I do not hug her back.

One hand holding a snack, the other hand holding my coffee tumbler, I stand frozen with a helpless look on my face until she lets go.

Others in the room look at the spectacle with an amused look on their face.

One resident, whose eyes met mine, read my look and shrugged her shoulders in an unspoken "Oh well. What can you do".

Talker had her regular "It's meant to be" look on her face, and later told me, "She'd been waiting for you".

Great! Just Great!

I was so rattled that I had a hard time holding onto the bingo chips. My hands were shaking.

In an effort to discourage my little stalker from further engagement, I avoided making eye contact and, by Game 3, was able to settle in and play without my hands shaking.

I didn’t win anything and, after the last game, I quickly fled the room, headed back to my unit, so as to not give her an opportunity to engage.

The remainder of the afternoon was spent hiding ... hiding from a six-year-old with the lights out and the television on low so I could pretend not to be in the unit should she decide to knock knock to hug me later on her way home.

She didn’t, but I was ready to not answer the door.

At any rate, it looks like there is no escape as there will be times Talker will be bringing granddaughter with her to bingo.

I may have to tolerate the hugs until she grows out of it or senses my disconnect.

The resident who goes all postal when a child is in the room on bingo days was present, so I was surprised she — whom I refer to as R in the blog, didn’t say something like the time she stood up and said, "There’s a child here, so I’m leaving".

I guess she knows who she can get away with bullying around here and is afraid to pull that on Talker.

Not that she is afraid of Talker, but of Talker’s new best friend on the complex who seems a pistol and would rip R a new one had she said anything about Talker’s granddaughter being in the room.

So, since I didn’t get to run errands yesterday, I’ll have to head out today, but looks to be a good day for a drive and maybe some mall walking.

I had no intentions of watching the video being circulated about the cop murder of Tyre Nichols but, of course, some images of the beating showed up on Good Morning America this morning.

What little I saw brought tears to my eyes.

It's insane. Reminiscent of the brutalization of Rodney King.

How can so-called human beings, whether wearing a blue uniform or not, do that to other human beings then go on with their lives as if it was just another day at the office?

The news also indicated the cops had bonded out and two planned to plead not guilty.

You must be joking.

There is no way to justify those actions.