Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Happy Halloween

That’s a throw pillow I walked up on at Joann’s Crafts. The words being a clever play on pimp talk made me stop in my tracks and lol. I was not amused enough to purchase it though, but only because, since we don’t get any trick-or-treaters, I don’t go to the trouble of decorating for Halloween.
One resident appears to have the spirit, but not enough spirit to throw on a costume and attend the Halloween Potluck.

Being around so many unmotivated people has killed my Halloween spirit. It died a little last year, when I was the only one to wear a costume. Then there was the annual Halloween Spooktacular 5K, 10K, Half Marathon, where I always go as Michonne, not coming to the area this year. And even though I won the costume contest here at the complex this year, the poor showing was the coup de gras. I seriously doubt I’ll ever look forward to this time of year as eagerly as I have in the past.
The Residents Volunteer Activity Committee is asking for volunteers to sit outside the complex tonight and distribute candy to kids from 4:00 to 7:00.
Don’t know if they’ve received any takers, but I’m wondering -- even if volunteers step forward (which I doubt), just where do they expect the kids to come from?
With three elementary schools in the immediate vicinity, there are children in the area, but they live in nice little neighborhoods surrounding us and in the multi-family complex next door. With so much at their doorstep, children have no need to leave and walk in this direction. The volunteers, if there are any, will more than likely sit, chat, eat candy.
This past weekend was quiet and uneventful (except for gut issues as last week's biscuits caught up with me). I mostly rested and recovered from the gut issues and from having tapped into what turned out to be a nephew having a medical crisis.
Being an empath is both a blessing and a curse. One gets a sense of what’s going to happen before it happens, which gives one time to prepare for and accept bad news when it comes; but on the other hand, it’s draining when one actually feels what the other person is feeling, and I’m finding that being around unmotivated old people is draining enough and rubbing off on me.
Receiving emails daily about nearby fun 5Ks this month, next month, next year -- some encouraging costumes, I’ve not been even remotely interested, tempted to register. And right this minute, I’m feeling so unmotivated that I may not follow through with the two turkey trots I’ve already committed to.
Today is not only Halloween but also Pizza Tuesday. I wasn’t planning to head to the Community Room and watch the seniors have at another feeding frenzy but I might as well, since I woke up to no television service. I've got internet (thank the Lord), but Tech Support tells me there’s an outage for television service in the area. When I head out, I’ll check to see if it has something to do with the U-Haul vs Building incident.
In the meantime, as much as I pay for Cable TV ...  witch better restore my service.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Ebb and Flow

Woke up yesterday morning totally exhausted because why?
How does that happen anyway that my energy ebbs and flows in such dramatic fashion? A few days ago, I was shampooing the carpet, cleaning, dusting then, all of a sudden, I’m tired, dizzy, so weak that I barely have the strength to move from room to room or hold the counted cross stitch needle in my hand.
Inasmuch as I’m an empath, it’s difficult to tell if what I sometimes feel is me or if I’m picking up what someone else in the family is experiencing – as other family members are generally who I pick up.
At any rate, yesterday was about staying indoors, relaxing, recovering from whatever that was.
Still a little weak not quite myself this morning, but better than yesterday, I decided I needed sunshine and instant energy, i.e., Starbucks. I also needed more Pokéballs and Starbucks has two PokéStops on the parking lot. 
Problem is, the stops didn’t go with the new drive-thru location. They’re still at the old location, which is being turned into a T-Mobile."
Killing two birds with one stone, I parked at the old location, gathered balls and walked to the new location, knowing that by the time I walked back to the car at the old location, the Pokéstop would have refreshed and I could hit it up a second time.
Inside Starbucks, waiting for my order to be processed, I spotted a familiar face -- Grumpy Neighbor, the woman upstairs across the quad.
She was wiping the table down, so I walked over and jokingly said, “Are you the cleaning lady?”
She laughed, and then got into a spiel about how “I can’t stand this that and the other” on a table.
I can’t fault her for that. If a table doesn’t look clean enough for me, I’ll choose another or wipe it down but she kept complaining about it. Turning it into a federal case.
Tired of listening, I cut her off by asking, “What are you doing here? I thought you always go to the Library”.
“I do, but today is Friday. Library is closed on Friday. What are you doing here?”
“I needed Pokéballs.”
“You needed what?”
Unless you’re in conversation with someone on the same wavelength, a lot of effort is required. Today was not the day for it. Inside my head was telling me, “I don’t want to work this hard”, so I changed the conversation.
“I like this new location. It’s roomy”, said I.
“I don’t like that the door doesn’t open properly and there’s this long wall of windows with no tables that have plug ins. All the plug-in stations are on that (indicating) wall and those (indicating) tables. Why couldn’t they have blocked off this (indicating) and yada yada yada.”
Tired, weak and suddenly feeling the beginning of a headache coming on, I excused myself saying, “Well nice seeing you. My order is about up”.
Next time I run into her, I’ll hide behind a pillar or something.
On another note, inside Starbucks, I saw a sign for Zombie Frappuccino.

I’ve never had a Frappuccino, don’t know what’s in one, but research says it’s green caramel apple powder, a drizzle of dark mocha powder, pinkish whip crème and can be made with non-fat milk.
Other than the fact it’s 54 grams of sugar, I don’t see anything on my not-safe list, so I may try it before the weekend is over, as it's limited-time only.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Guessing Game

Today’s visit to the medical center turned into a guessing game.
Upon checking in, I was given a questionnaire asking questions only a female would be asked, the answers to which would require a phenomenal memory. I’m 73 years old, so the year and age I was when things started and ended was too far back for me to remember. Consequently, there was a lot of guessing and “I don’t recall” entered on the questionnaire, but I did flash back and remember precisely when I’d last had a boobie exam – 1998.
I clearly remember being sent from one building at the Los Angeles facility, to another building across the street. The building didn’t feel right. It wasn’t bright and cheery like the other, and the Radiology Department was an elevator ride down to the basement.
I didn’t like the rickety old elevator and, when I arrived at the basement, I found it dark, gloomy, deserted. No one at the front desk, no other patients. Feeling uncomfortable, I decided not to wait around for someone to assist me. I turned, walked out and that was the last time I subjected myself to that preventative.
Things have changed a lot in twenty years. I’m still with the same medical provider, but the machine is a lot gentler than I recall – not to mention, Radiology is out of the basement and up on a bright cheery 3rd floor, and was fast and efficient.
Doctor will be pleased I finally did at least one of the preventatives she’s been bugging me about.
I’m pretty sure I know what she’s going to want me to do next, and I’m not at all sure I’ll rise to that level of cooperation, even though I learned it’s not about money, not about meeting a dollar quota. In fact, today’s visit was zero dollars. There wasn’t even a co-pay.
In chatting with the technician, as she slung the girls this way and that way, I learned it’s something to do with government regulations because of tax credits for being a “preventative” facility.
Compliance is involved and, when the government sees patients not having preventatives, the medical center is asked, “Why so many patients who haven’t had this that the other preventative?”
“The patients don’t want it. They won’t do it”, says the medical center.
“Well, you have to figure it out and find a way”, says the government.
So now I get why the phone calls, letters, post cards, appointment set up for me without my consent. It’s because the government puts pressure on the medical center, the medical center puts pressure on the doctor, the doctor puts pressure on the patient.
Relying more on holistic rather than conventional, medical coverage is something I have in my back pocket for emergencies (sorta like the renters’ insurance I finally purchased), for things I can’t resolve on my own through eating right and acupuncture – like breaks and the sprained wrist I gave myself a few years back from playing too much candy crush. I’m just not a run-to-the doctor type person for preventatives, especially since, should a preventative fall upon me, I’d just accept it and be out.
But that’s just me and my dharmic fatalistic view – which is not necessarily as depressing as the words “dharmic” and “fatalistic” make my philosophy seem to be. I just believe my purpose is to go with the flow of what the Universe throws my way. However, respecting those who choose to “not go gently into that good night”, those who choose to “rage against the dying of the light”, when I saw the Tree with names of those who struggled and lost the struggle and messages to “survive this … never give up” for those who are struggling now, I added a note to “Have Faith”.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Halloween Potluck

Seems every event around here is geared around food.
The seniors are always eating.
Today it was a deli sandwich platter provided by the Activity Director, the deli potato salad I brought, the Seer made cornbread while the Baker made chili, plus there were chips, sodas, cake, cupcakes.
I played it safe with deviled eggs and potato salad, both of which I made using Walden Farms Amazin’ Sweet & Tangy Mayo -- calorie free, fat free, soybean oil free, some cherry tomatoes, olives, baby carrots.
It turned out I was the only one with deviled eggs because the guy who signed up for them, of course, didn’t show, but that’s on him.
The costume portion wasn’t a total letdown as three others came in costume, but it was a  bit of a letdown in that I’d expected more participation. However, even though the others didn’t bother to dress, they had no problem donning the headbands and masks I provided, which made the event a little more spirit of Halloween for me, but sometimes I think I need to be with a younger more with it crowd.

On the flip-side, I won the best costume contest.

That’s the golden lariat of truth in my hand.
Didn’t expect a win, inasmuch as I generally lose costume contests and because I was up against …




I would have voted for the Witch, but it was gratifying to finally win one.

Prize was a deluxe pompom throw.

Tomorrow I’m off to the medical center to appease my doctor, who I think is close to firing me from her patient list because she’s not meeting the medical center’s quota with me. I keep popping up in her computer, followed by calls and letters to set up appointments for preventive things I don’t want.
I’ve blocked the medical center from my phone, ignored the letters and the doctor is at the point where I’ve been getting postcards about appointments she’s taken the liberty of scheduling for me.
Since I didn’t ask for those appointments, I’ve had no problem ignoring them as well. However, I owe her for the medical excuse she provided that got me out of jury duty and allowed me to opt out of the system altogether, so I’ll submit to this latest she’s scheduled for me -- a boobie check, to get her bosses off her back and I’ll submit to a follow-up visit with her – to get her off my back, and hopefully that will be the end of it.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Planting Seeds

Today was a good day to get back to work on throw pillow covers, because the Wi-Fi kept cutting out, messing with television viewing and internet browsing. I’d assumed someone was working on the equipment boxes hit by the U-Haul truck, so I turned to the sewing machine.
Following a tutorial found online for an envelope pillow cover, I had one down one to go in no time at all.

Twenty minutes later, the bedroom went from before to after.



Actually, I can't believe I lived with those ugly green pillows for five years. They don't look like anything I would have paid money for, so I'm thinking the sales girl threw them in gratis with other purchases from Living Spaces.  I almost threw them away a few weeks ago, but thankfully thought of recovering.

Nothing freshens up the look of a room like new pillow covers.
To that end, next time denim cloth goes on sale, I’ll have to pick up a yard or two to recover the couch’s tired looking throw pillows.
By the time the covers project was finished, the television was back on, but I headed outside anyway to see what was happening with the equipment box.
Saw nothing, but did run into the No. 2 Maintenance Guy.
“Hey, do we still have two Portable A/Cs in your unit?” asks he.
“Yes, of course you do. You know your boy (Head Maintenance Guy, No. 1) is too lazy to have done his job” bashed I.
No. 1’s job being, after taking 19 days to get my A/C back on, and then only because he knew I was trying to contact his boss at corporate. He then thought to punish or inconvenience me by leaving the portables in my unit.
No punishment to me as I used them as nightstands, hoping he’d eventually forget about them altogether, and I could yet bring his surliness and laziness to the attention of corporate when boss lady from corporate did her annual inspection.
I could have lied and replied “no” to No. 2, when he asked if they were still in my unit, but lying is not my thing.
“Well, I’ll have to come and get them” said he.
“You’ll be the one to do it because you seem to be the only one on the crew with any motivation”.
No reaction, but I’m sure I’m not the only one he’s heard bash No. 1. Hopefully No. 2 will relay what I said to No. 1 – not that No. 1 seems to be the type to care what others think. He’s already giving me side eye over forcing him to get the A/C back on through threat of going over the head of the girls in the office and to his big boss at corporate. However, he will have heard what I said, and you never know when the seed of what he heard will sprout, and no matter how strong his ego denial, something will click, he’ll see what a jerk he’s become and grow up.
At any rate, the portables have been sitting here for 34 days. We’ll see how long it takes No. 2 to follow through -- unless No. 1 doesn’t allow him to follow through.

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Wasn’t Worth the Risk

Weekend started off on a productive note.
First of all, color me grateful but surprised when Saturday’s Community Biscuits and Gravy breakfast did not make me ill.
Maybe because my body is sufficiently free of toxins so that what toxins I ingested wasn’t enough to hurt me.
At any rate, dodged a bullet there, but I wouldn’t risk it again because it turned out not to be worth the risk. Nothing to do with The Baker, as everyone else enjoyed and raved about her biscuits just like always. The difference was me. Knowing it was me, not her, I joined the chorus in praising the biscuits but, because of so long eating only that which is on my safe list, my taste buds have changed and what to me before as so flavorful was literally flavorless.
So that’s probably the last breakfast I’ll participate in with the folks.
I was full of energy after the breakfast – probably the carbs in the biscuits, pulled the carpet cleaner out of storage, and began cleaning, moving furniture out of the way as I went along. In the process of moving furniture, I decided to undo the arrangement I’d gone through the trouble of arranging back in July, returning things back to the way they previously were.
I did like the couch dividing the room, but I kept hitting my toe on the corner as I entered and exited that area. Much better feng shui in the open no obstacles set up.
After shampooing the carpet, rearranging furniture, it was dusting and polishing until I began to feel worn out and called it quits on any more projects.
Waking up stiff and sore this morning, from non-stop housework on Saturday, I decided to take it easy by working on crafts. I measured the two pillows I want to cover with that leftover kente cloth, made a pattern, was able to get enough pieces to cover both pillows from the remnant and, while my cutting board was set up, decided to cut pieces for another gluttee wrap – this one in a plaid fabric to match my plaid head wrap.
With all pieces ready to go, I set up the sewing machine but then, watching (more listening to) Chopped as I went along, I looked up and saw a contestant with her nails painted to resemble candy corn.
All crafting ceased as I said to myself, “I have got to do that!” So off I go to the drugstore for white, yellow, orange polish.
It took like forever to get the candy corn effect, with a lot of undoing and trying again, until I ended up with not a professional looking job, but passable.

This design is going to clash with my Wonder Woman costume, but oh well. It’s a fun look for Halloween.
Not wanting to put myself through the same difficulty on the toes, as I’d experienced on the nails, I copped out with alternating white, yellow, orange and just the big toe like candy corn.

Friday, October 20, 2017

The Struggle Is Real

No bad side effects from yesterday’s chicken and veggies at the dinner/dance, yet this morning was a struggle.
In spite of the message to “Let the dead past bury its dead”, feeling that I needed to see and be seen for closure, the urge to make an appearance at the dead Klansman’s memorial was overwhelming.
I fought the feeling by running errands, making sure to dress inappropriately for a memorial by putting on the brightly colored Wonder Woman Leggings, so I’d not be able to end up driving in that direction and showing up yet and still. Plus, in the back of my mind there was how the Universe would punish me to consider. That something bad was sure to happen, like an accident, if I ran with my own personal human will.
When all was said and done, I managed to fight the feeling, close the book on the guy and go on with my day. I did, however, see a commiserating comment a facebook friend made to one of the Klan girls checking in “heartbroken” at the graveside.
I question just how heartbroken one is that they log onto facebook and check in from the cemetery.
Just sayin’.
Tomorrow, Saturday, is a Breakfast Potluck.
This is something the Residents Volunteer Activity Committee started two/three months ago, for every 1st and 3rd Saturday.
Because of my issues with food, I’ve never participated; but The Baker is making her famous biscuits and gravy tomorrow, so I signed up to bring a Starbucks Traveler, because the seniors go out-of-their minds with glee when a box of Starbucks is sitting on the Community Room counter.
Of course, I’m not supposed to have biscuits, unless made with almond flour or gravy, unless made with garbanzo bean flour, which The Baker’s biscuits and gravy are not; but I do love biscuits and gravy, especially hers, so I expect I’ll eat myself sick, be sorry later, up all night with stomach pains, but it will pass.
Lastly, the sign-up sheet has been posted for the Halloween Potluck and, just when I was beginning to think perhaps I would do deviled eggs for the group after all, I see a male resident has already signed up for “develed eggs”.
I’ll bring deli potato salad instead, and play it safe with my own deviled eggs for myself.
If he doesn’t follow through -- and often folks don't. They sign up for a dish and then don't bring it. But, if this happens, folks can’t be mad at me and resent bringing just for myself. I’ll just say I was going to make for everyone but, when he signed up, I just made a few with the special Walden Farms Mayo (sugar free, soybean oil free) that doesn’t disturb my gut rather than the regular mayo I would have used on eggs for everyone.

Thursday, October 19, 2017


After two days of no outside contact, because I was swept up in working on that needlepoint project while watching the Walking Dead Marathon, I headed down to the Community Room this morning to check the bulletin board for what, if any, movie was to play at Friday’s Movie Night.
Found the Community Room blocked off in preparation for the 4:00 Dinner/Dance, and when I peeked through the windows and saw how upscale everything looked, I heard myself say to myself “This is going to be a pretty big deal” and decided to attend.
THEN, switching channels during a commercial, I saw Top Chef was running an All Stars Season, so I put down the needlepoint and switched channels between Walking Dead, Top Chef, promptly forgetting about the dinner/dance until I looked up and realized it was 3:30.
Dressing up a pair of black leggings with my fancy belt, boots and a blazer, I headed down and had a ball.

Oops. My belt is off center

Turns out I can dance after all, but only because the music played was geared to the sixties. My feet and body remembered the steps and, before I knew it, I found myself on the dance floor doing the twist, swim, pony, even the mashed potato. And I wasn’t alone on the dance floor. Most of us old gals remembered what to do when certain songs were played. Even those in wheelchairs moved whatever they could move to the music.
It was a hoot.

Seniors on Canes/Walkers were Assisted

Color me surprised when next door neighbor who, like I’d previously posted, had stayed clear of the general population since being impeached from the Volunteer Activity Committee, walked through the doors. I thought she’d probably just make a plate and leave, but no. She sat down, ate with other residents, even danced. So, I guess she’s finally completely over what happened.
As for dinner, I took my chances on a chicken drumstick covered in some sort of sauce and vegetables cooked in butter, passing on rice, salad greens, macaroni salad, dinner rolls, deserts and fruit – because the fruit I ate at the Bake Sale gave me grief later that night.
Hopefully the chicken and veggies were safe enough to not cause a gut reaction.
Today ended on a high note, which I’m hopeful will carry on through to the 24th with residents wearing costumes to the Halloween Party.
I’m going back and forth between Wonder Woman and Minion.
I was also going back and forth on attending services for that dead Klansman.
Graveside services are closed to all but family/friends tomorrow, followed by Celebration of Life from 2:00 to 7:00.
Though I had every intention of attending the Celebration, just to make a point to his fellow Klansmen and Klan girls that, though they tried to end me emotionally and career wise, that I survived and came out unbloodied, unbowed (not everyone they targeted were as fortunate).
The only reason I was going back and forth was because I knew in my heart that I was being spiteful and, not wanting to create any negative karma for myself, I told myself I was doing it UNLESS the Universe told me otherwise.
Would you believe, after returning to my unit from the dinner/dance, and on a high note, I heard loud and clear “Let the dead past bury its dead”.
Would you also believe I didn’t know where that phrase came from?
After Googling it, I find it’s from Luke 9:60.
So that’s it, I guess. I still kinda want to see those folks, have them see me, but I know better than to test the Universe or go against its directive.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

The Fundraiser

The Bake Sale to benefit the seniors displaced by Northern California Fires was a smashing success.

Even next door neighbor -- the resident who was impeached as President of the Residents Volunteer Activity Committee and hasn’t had anything to do with the general population since, baked a cake for the sale.

Neighbor's Cake

Judging by the looks of this next dessert, it appears we have some very talented bakers living here.

In the good old days when I could eat like a normal human, i.e. gluten, high fructose corn syrup, sugar, etc., I’d have put myself in a sugar coma but, not wanting to suffer for days with a gut episode, I made a donation and satisfied myself with fruit.

In addition to donations raised by baked goods, residents filled a giant box with many of the items listed as needed -- “sleepwear, underwear, socks, hygiene/toiletry kits, bedding, dog/cat food, charging cables/power strips", etc.
And speaking of smashing … I walked over to see the aftermath of Sunday’s U-Haul vs Building incident. Now that the U-Haul has been removed, one can see it almost landed in a resident’s bedroom.

Today is Pizza Tuesday for the seniors, followed by someone coming in to try to sell them on a medical plan -- luring them with an Ice Cream Social. Then there’s Thursday’s Dinner/Dance and Friday’s Movie Night, which includes popcorn, sodas, hot dogs. The seniors won’t need to go shopping for groceries any time soon.
On another note, judging by the mail piled on top of the mailboxes, the seniors are getting fed up with doing the relief mail carrier’s job for him – delivering mail put in their slots by mistake. They’re now just decorating top of the mail boxes with the guy’s mistakes.

His mistakes are taking up the top from one end to the other, not to mention the packages going missing because he puts the key to the lockbox in the wrong mail slot. The guy isn’t even trying to do a right and proper job, but maybe the line of his mistakes will spur the other mail carriers, who are forced to pick up the slack, to give him a corrective talking to.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Inventory and a Boom

Saturday was spent taking inventory.
Not of my life – did that years ago and worked through most of my issues, except forgiveness. I still have a hard time with that but taking inventory in the sense of making a list and taking photos in preparation for obtaining renters insurance.
Renters insurance is not required at this complex. Nevertheless, I’ve thought about it every time we’ve had a fire in the area, and decided against it because the things I valued couldn’t be insured.
What got me thinking about it again are the seniors displaced by the fire at the Santa Rosa complex. I thought about the fact there's a new television in the unit, two new laptops, an exercise bike and I would need, at the very least, to replace the This End Up platform bed, night stand, sofa, dining table, book cases. After researching how much it would cost to replace those and other essential items, I find, notwithstanding the things it would kill me to lose, I do need enough renters’ insurance to cover the basics.
So, photos and making a list was Saturday’s project.
The plan for today was to make good use of the fabric left over from the kente cloth gluttee by using the excess fabric to recover throw pillows I’ve fallen out-of-like with.
That plan was scrapped when, around 11:00, I heard what sounded like one of the downstairs neighbors slamming their door really hard. The building shook, the television shook and went to black.
I kept fooling around with the remote, turning the TV off/on, pushing random buttons for some time with no results. Logging onto the computer to seek remote service, I found I had no internet, no Wi-Fi service. I could see connections surrounding mine appeared to be connected, so somehow it was just me in this building.
After dialing up the cable service provider, following steps, I ended up with a message to “wait it out”, that there was probably an outage in the area.
Sure there was, but it appeared to be just me.
At any rate, I put in some time on my needlepoint project and adjusted to the quiet for another hour before checking Wi-Fi connection.
It was back on, but now the television wouldn’t connect to Wi-Fi.
Dialing up the television technical support line, I was walked through factory reset.
What a nightmare experience that was.
The poor agent spent no less than two hours walking me through steps, with me not understanding what buttons to push on the remote to get from Point A to Point B, doing it wrong, restarting, hitting roadblocks that necessitated the poor girl running back/forth between me and her supervisor to figure out what to try next AND, when we finally got past the factory reset, the screen made me set up a Samsung account before we could continue and get picture, which was a whole nother nightmare, at which point I “lost” the agent.
I say “lost” because I think she accidentally on purpose got exhausted with me and hung up.
It was a solo hunt and peck the next hour and a half, but I got it done.
I have to say though, I didn’t like the fact I had to set up a Smart Account to get to television, including name, email address, date of birth. Whatever happened to simple plug and play? The guys who delivered and set the television up didn’t have to go through all those steps, so I’m thinking I jammed up the works when I was randomly pushing buttons trying to get the television back on before I realized it was off because there was no Wi-Fi.
It wasn’t until around 3:30 when everything returned to normal, at which time I logged onto facebook and discovered my buddy Apache has posted that an accident had happened on the property.
Heading outside I discovered it wasn’t a door being slammed that knocked out my Wi-Fi, it was someone moving in hitting the gas, instead of brake, losing control of their U-Haul truck, smashing the wall of a building all the way in to the equipment boxes.

It wasn’t my building but, evidently, it was where my server connection is located.
I didn’t see the responsible resident hanging around the scene, but I did see the Complex Manager and the No. 2 maintenance guy had been called in, neither of whom live on the property and had to come from home while we have the Head Maintenance Guy and Assistant Manager on site.
Go figure.
What a horrible, embarrassing and expensive thing to happen to the individual moving in, but thankfully she wasn't hurt -- and I hear it's a woman, and thankfully she didn't hit any parked cars or people walking dogs in the area.
Hopefully repairs won’t knock the Wi-Fi out yet and again.
Bake Sale to benefit the seniors displaced by Northern California Fires is tomorrow. Totally exhausted by today's technical issues, my decision is to take the easy way out and donate cash to the bake sale.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Highly Illogical

Shortly after I replied to a comment that I’d not been told much about the corporation’s senior complex in Santa Rosa, other than it had been destroyed by fire, management posted a bulletin to my door confirming Monday’s Bake Sale, proceeds to be sent to “our sister property in Santa Rosa affected by heavy fires” and asking for donations of “sleepwear, underwear, socks, hygiene/toiletry kits, bedding, dog/cat food, charging cables/power strips", etc. Also, "some of our team members live in mandatory evacuation areas, some of which have not been able to report to work due to road closures".
So much trauma every where you look, not to mention all the political drama, it really is beginning to feel like the end of the world to me.
I’m torn between donating cash or heading to Walmart to purchase items, but not until tomorrow because today is Friday the 13th and I’m just superstitious enough to not want to leave the unit and go any further than to drop off trash and attend tonight’s movie night – Madea Boo Halloween.
I’ll decide tomorrow.
Thursday’s recertification session, scheduled for 15 minutes, went on for 45, by which time there was a backup of the three residents scheduled behind me.
The extra-long session wasn’t because paperwork took that long, but because I had to listen to Assistant Manager’s personal problems.
I didn’t stop her because what she had to say was actually quite enlightening.
She lives on the property and, as mentioned in previous posts, she’d taken a lot of time off ill, in the last year or two, because of the stress of her husband’s sudden illness. I hadn’t realized the husband’s medical issues became so serious that he fell into a coma, not expected to live until it was discovered the cause of his decline in health was due to malpractice -- doctor giving him “wrong medication”. What his original problem was that called for medication, I do not know. Just that, over time, the wrong medication impacted his health and almost killed him.
On the mend now that the medication issue has been resolved, husband is weak and just starting to walk again, but wife credits his recovery to so many residents praying for him. To show gratitude, she and her family are hosting a dinner/dance for us residents.
Nice, but my gut issues preclude my attendance. Plus, I can’t dance – except for country/western line dancing.
As for the recertification paperwork, it’s signed and Assistant Manager reiterated I’m grandfathered because, “After the first year, you can win the lottery and still be eligible to live here”. 
Great, but if that’s the case, why are we doing all this proof-of-income paperwork? I even had to provide a statement as to the source of that windfall.
I didn’t think to ask at the time, but I will because my inner Leonard Spock finds the process highly illogical if my income is no longer a factor and inquiring minds want to know.
And this is just Step 1. Once the powers-that-be look over my recertification paperwork, there’s still a lease to be signed in February, and she tells me “Rent will remain the same. No increase”.
Color me lucky, relieved, but really confused.
After the session, I popped into the Community Room and ran into the resident you long-time readers will remember as the woman whose only income was caring for her mother. When her mother was taken away by the sister, she lost her income and became so gripped with fear and worry as to what would happen to her, where she’d go, what she’d do that she ended up hospitalized with a bowel obstruction that required surgery. Through the Grace of God and the goodness of her son, she’s managed to stay in the unit and later, when that source of income played out, got hired on as live-in caretaker for another resident.
It’s not a job she enjoyed, or a person she enjoyed working for/living with but, having no other options, welcomed and stuck with it.
Now she tells me she might be moving because she, like me, was blessed with a former employer tracking her down, and making her aware she’d left money behind in a plan. It’s a nice tidy sum and though she’d love to rent a unit here, her situation is different than mine in that my windfall arrived years AFTER I qualified to be a resident. Her living with someone else, she is not actually considered a resident and her nice tidy sum is over-income for qualifying to become a resident.
If she can’t work something out with management, and she’s going to try, her backup plan is to buy a trailer and relocate to a trailer park in Yucaipa.
Good for her.
Wish I could be as adventurous.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Decision Day

No word yet on a memorial for that deceased Klansman and, after the initial two/three days of facebook accolades, comments have ceased. I did pull that Nordstrom suit out of storage -- the only item of clothing I own that’s suitable for a memorial and, lo and behold, it still fits. Waist is a little tight … a lot tight, but I think I can suffer a few hours of being cinched in, so I’m good to go when word of a memorial comes down.
I hope the memorial is scheduled locally, because I’m not one to drive out-of-my-way just to prove a point. I also won’t join the train to the grave site, because I’ve had experiences you would not believe and stay far far away from cemeteries because I don’t want any ghostly apparitions on the property to latch on and follow me home.
So, there’s that.
Today is the day to sign paperwork certifying my qualifications to reup for another year here at the complex.
At issue is that windfall I was blessed with a few months back and whether I am now over income and must relocate or whether I’m deemed grandfathered in.
Even though I’d informed management of the windfall and had been told I was grandfathered into this restricted income community, with the only change being an increase in rent, I couldn’t trust that information to be correct until the recertification paperwork was actually presented to me and signed. 
I’d already decided that, once the paperwork was presented, and the rent increase was equal to what I’d pay elsewhere at a multi-family complex or a luxury senior complex, that I might opt out and relocate to Henderson, Nevada -- to be near the excitement of Las Vegas. I’d even researched a 55 and over community in Santa Rosa, California, because I remembered attending a meditation session years ago in Santa Rosa and it seemed a nice spiritual area to be in.
So, we all know what happened in Las Vegas, which gives me pause as a good backup plan. Plus, the shooter was said to have been living in a senior complex. Which one? New neighbors, not knowing who any of them are, what issues they’re dealing with, is sounding less and less attractive.
And would you believe that I just learned that property in Santa Rosa I was looking at is owned by the same corporation that owns this property AND the property was one of the many properties destroyed by the Northern California wildfires.
We’re having a fundraiser on Monday to provide food and clothing for the seniors displaced from the Santa Rosa property.
We have our dramas around here – our fires on the hill, our weird neighbors, our lazy surly Head Maintenance Guy, but with the Universe showing me all these pictures of trauma north, south, east, west, I’m feeling very fortunate to be here, stuck in the middle, and plan to sign the paperwork no matter how much the rent goes up.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Death Becomes Us

Yesterday morning started off with a message from a former coworker alerting me to the passing of a department manager. I didn’t work directly for him but, located in the same area, he was hard to miss, especially so for me because he was part of the group I use to blog about (when I had a blog titled "Black and Blue"), describing them as Klansmen, who actively tried to run me out of the company because that’s what Massa (the CEO) ordered to be done because he didn’t want a Black woman in a secretarial position.
Janitor, yes.
Bus driver, yes.
But in an office position, no, because even though I came out No. 1 on the test, and aced the interview and had years of experience at the Executive Assistant level, in his racist mind a Black Woman wasn't supposed to be good enough to be a secretary. But I’d already slipped through the cracks before Massa learned I was Black and could prevent the hire.
Consequently, the CEO did everything he could to find a reason to fire me, even personally threatening me that, “You will be taken care of!”, and encouraged his Klansmen and Mistresses of the Plantation to give me a hard-enough time so I’d leave. He even specifically hired a woman, placed her over my boss (who was well pleased with me and hired me because she said she didn't care what color I was, that she wanted someone who could do the work, even when a representative from the Personnel Department tried to get her to change her mind saying, "Why do you want to hire that n.g.e.r"). At any rate, the CEO fed the new woman some line that I was a problem and, on Friday of her first week, she called me into her office and said, “They don’t want you here, so why don’t you leave. Just go”.
This wasn’t my first rodeo with racism and abuse of authority. I knew how to maintain my spiritual integrity, professionalism and give them nothing to grasp onto as justification, and consequently gained the respect and support of those who stood by as observers. Even some of the CEO’s Klansmen didn’t put their heart and soul into harassing me, they just did what they had to do to stay safe and off the CEO’s radar, as those who did not support his views, those he deemed not loyal were themselves fired and/or harassed out. Which is what happened to the woman who was to have gotten me to leave. I didn’t leave, she couldn’t force me, she even came to like and depend on me and refused to get blood on her hands and put herself in line for a lawsuit by firing me without cause, which is what the CEO wanted her to do, so he yelled and screamed at her until she said she was demoralized/couldn’t take it any longer and quit after three months in the job.
Sound familiar?
Sounds like the same insanity, borne of insecurity and a God complex, those working for the Orange Guy are subjected to.
At any rate, this went on for six years, with two more women being hired and told to find fault and fire me. They not only did not find fault, but praised my skills, performance, eventually came to realize they were dealing with a mad man and one moved on, the other was forced out for being so bold as to say, "I don't fire good employees".
What ended it all was a series of state and federal audits wherein a number of "findings" were imposed against the agency -- financial improprieties that had to be explained. The CEO suddenly retired and fled the state ahead of an indictment, the Klansmen scattered, like rats from a sinking ship, to employment at other agencies before their part in financial misdeeds were uncovered, reputations ruined and though the four Mistresses of the Plantation and two Klansmen remained, because they were not skilled enough to go anywhere else, with Massa gone, his Main Bully Overseers out of the agency, those remaining kept a low profile, resulting in racism going down to a normal every day level, and the focus became no longer me. Now that the struggle was over, I felt my work/my reason for being there was done, eventually got bored and retired.
How much did my direct boss, the woman who hired me loved me?
When I announced I was retiring, she said, “If you’re not going to be here, I don’t want to be here” and she too turned in her papers.
She unfortunately learned a month or so after retiring that she had lung cancer and passed away. It was so unfair. She didn't get to enjoy her retirement. We were so close that I think about and miss her all the time.
The department manager I was alerted to passing was one of the two Klansmen who stayed. Only 54 years of age, his death made news as he “fell” some 16 stories from a hotel balcony in Atlanta while attending a conference.
Authorities have said no foul play is suspected, but my spidey sense is telling me “suicide”.
Yesterday and today has been facebook comments about how sad and devastated and broken hearted everyone is, that there are no words and it's not to be believed he's gone because he was such a great guy, yada yada yada.
Are they being honest or is it because death becomes us, people only speak good things of us once we’re gone?
I simply can’t believe some of the accolades I’m reading, and there are many being posted.
I’ve kept quiet because I’m not about to lie and say he was a great guy. He wasn’t the worse of the Klansmen, but he did sell his soul to the devil CEO and did a lot of things at Massa's behest, and not just to me. So, sorry, not sorry.
I imagine the Klansmen and Mistresses will all come together for his memorial, which tempts me to go as one final slap in their faces that, in spite of their machinations, I’m still alive, thriving and surviving quite well.
Depends on when the memorial is, where it is, what time and if I can still fit into that Nordstrom suit I’ve held onto.