Saturday, August 29, 2020

Nailed It!

I saw an interesting face mask on one of your blogs a few days ago.


Appearing to be made from the zipper area of jeans, one can unzip and take a sip from a drink.
During yesterday’s decluttering project, I ran across an old pair of mom jeans and thought to give making that mask a try.
Taking a break from clutter management, I pulled out the sewing machine and voila!



Nailed it!
Well, kinda, sorta, because it’s sloppy work. Online research did not produce a pattern to follow, so I winged it. And not wanting to break the needle of my machine in trying to sew through heavy areas to make the edges all tidy like the example in the photo, I decided to leave the edges frayed. After all ... frayed jeans are the thing these days.
The end result is not something I’d wear out in public, like to the market or craft store ─ preferring my glitter masks but, once I’m allowed to get back to training at the Pain Cave, inasmuch as I have to hydrate between sets, which necessitated pulling up a side of my mask to take a drink, I might use this mask instead ... open the fly and sip.

Friday, August 28, 2020

Snitching, Part 2

Walking into the market yesterday, I stopped and began staring at an old guy, also walking in, that wasn’t wearing a mask.
As our eyes met and he realized I was staring at him, it was on the tip of my tongue to ask, “Where’s your mask?” But then he disarmed me with a pleasantry ─ he smiled and said “Hello. How are you?”.
Damn him for being a sweet old guy, when I was primed and ready for an incident that would probably end up on the internet because, in my mind, the confrontation would end up with yelling, culminating by my having to pepper spray him.
There’s always a person stationed by the door to enforce the “no mask no entry” rule. Sometimes it’s private security, sometimes a worker. That day it was a worker, a young woman who was asleep at the wheel, looking at her phone.
So, as I stood in stunned silence as old guy went on his merry way, walking up to another worker, asking her a question and she, instead of saying “Sir, you cannot be in here without a mask” began leading him to the item he was questioning. It was then that the snitch in me came out again.
I walked over to little miss asleep at the wheel and said, “That guy doesn’t have a mask”.
She immediately came to attention, picked up a small box from her station, ran after the guy and gave him a mask from the box.
I didn’t wait to see if he actually used it.
I’m a person that doesn’t like to get involved, but here I am snitching twice in one week. First was when I pointed out, to the chopper, the direction that guy running through the complex went, and now this.
I’m hoping not to make a habit of this snitching, getting involved, because my position has always been that of a drop out, a watcher, observer ─ not being fully invested in this world, but rather standing on the outside looking in. However, now I find myself not only getting involved by snitching but, for the first time I actually did that Census thing.
It left a bad taste in my mouth that I actually gave into the constant barrage of notices that I’d not completed and returned the Census, but I capitulated, went through the online process, and got those census people off my back.
And not only that but, unable to sleep last night, because I couldn’t clear my mind of how surreal it is that an unarmed Black man defied the police by walking around to the driver's side of his SUV and got himself shot seven times in the back BUT a white kid was allowed to walk around with an AR-15, shoot and kill two people, injure one, and got a bottle of water and a thank you from the cops. So, after finally falling asleep along about 2 a.m., waking up late at 11:00, I jumped online and registered to vote ... for the first time.
You read that right. At 76 years of age, this will be my first time voting.
Shocked as you all might be, it won’t compare to how shocked my girls will be. I can’t wait to tell Twin 2 that I’ve registered because she used to get into arguments in class discussions when she’d say her mom won’t do jury duty and doesn’t vote because her mom didn’t like "wasting her time" (my explanation to the girls for my choosing to opt out of social obligations) on those things.
On another note, our quad is full again.
On Tuesday, I was coming down the stairs and greeted a woman I saw walking through the quad. She greeted me back and, just to make conversation, said, “It’s difficult to breathe in this mask”.
“Especially when it’s this hot”, replied I.
When I saw her turn into the walkway towards the unit Nosey occupied before passing away, I asked, “Are you the new neighbor?”, to which she replied she was.
After introducing myself and welcoming her to the complex, inasmuch as I never saw anyone moving in, and had assumed the unit was still vacant because I’d seen no signs of life — no one coming/going, had not seen any lights on — though I’d not really looked, and the blinds and patio doors were always closed, I asked, “When did you move in?”.
“July 29”.
She’s been here a month already and I never noticed a thing, so I said “Wow! You keep a low profile”.
“That’s because my kids don’t want me leaving the unit until the pandemic is over. They’re saying two years.”
The new neighbor seems friendly enough. Not like Illusive Unfriendly — the neighbor in the downstairs unit underneath me. Illusive has been here since April 2017 and, when she moved in, wasn’t having it when I tried to introduce myself and welcome her. She chased me away by giving me a cold hard stare, raising her voice and yelling, “I DON’T LIKE PEOPLE!”.
Except, I have noticed that though she avoids us in the quad — won't look us in the eye, walks the other way rather than speak, she doesn’t appear to have a problem liking, looking in the eye, speaking when the people are men. While sitting on my perch on the couch one day, I actually spotted her running down the walkway to catch up with and have words with Big Friendly Guy, who turned around and followed her into her unit. LOL.
Oh well. Whatever.
So anyway, plan for today was to head to the air-conditioned mall to qualify in the OC Fair Virtual 5K. However, it will have to wait for another day because, waking up so late, I’ve decided to focus on purging the unit of items I no longer need or want, because I look around and see just so much unnecessary stuff.

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Snitching

There was a lot of police activity in the area yesterday. I could hear sirens going up and down the street for what sounded like every few minutes.
I thought it might be the result of possible insurrection having to do with folks upset over the latest shooting of an unarmed Black man ─ the one in Wisconsin.
And let me just say what I’ve said before ─ my unpopular opinion that instead of resisting, sometimes you’ve just got to go with the flow, suck it up, accept you’re going to be profiled, going to be treated differently, and just need to learn how to survive in that kind of atmosphere.
I’m glad the victim did not die ─ though I’ve read he might be paralyzed from the waist down. Glad because he now has time to think about the incident and how differently things would have turned out for him had he not been so foolish as to expect the cops would not do what they are prone to do when a Black person is involved. Had he not tried to show what a man he was by walking away and had just humbled himself, he’d have come out unscathed ─ emasculated as a man perhaps, his feelings hurt rather than seven bullets in his back ending in paralysis. Cops, and racists in general, love it when we play humble, contrite, stupid even (which is how I survived Corporate America), because it doesn't threaten their erroneous sense of superiority  which, when it is threatened is when they become dangerous, vindictive. Like I’ve said before ... it’s maddening, insulting, but you have to be smart, play that game in order to survive.
So, anyways, there were sirens off/on during the day and, at one point, a helicopter circling the complex.
I had just happened to open the door, heading out to drop the rent check in the mail when I simultaneously heard the helicopter circling the complex and saw a young guy, who obviously did not belong here, rushing through the quad, looking back, as though making sure he wasn’t being pursued.
He was so busy looking behind that he didn’t look up and notice I’d just opened the door and was stepping out, but it occurred to me that, if he was being pursued and saw me, he might run up the stairs and try to duck inside, so I got my pepper spray ready (I always have it in my hand ever since that pervert accosted me in the mail area). 
By the time I locked the door and made it to the bottom of the stairs, I saw the guy was running, headed towards the corner back of the complex. Realizing the helicopter was probably looking for him, I snitched.
Someone had once told me that the cameras on those helicopters are so good that they can make out every little thing on the ground so, when the chopper circled back to where I was standing, I pointed in the direction I saw the guy running.
I guess they saw me, because they stopped circling and headed in that direction.
Since I was outside, I took a look around to see if I could spot why so much police activity and saw a couple cop cars down the street, surrounding a car.
I’m guessing the guy escaped from whatever that situation was.
Later in the day, there were more sirens, but none that night.
Checking the local news online to ascertain if all that activity had anything to do with protests or looting, I found no mention at all. So, perhaps police activity in the area was preemptive ─ to prevent what happened after the last incident (the murder of George Floyd), to chase off people who even looked like they might be planning something.
We don’t get that kind of police presence in this area ─ they usually only come when called; so, if it was preemptive, I’m impressed.
I played a dirty trick on a new cashier at the market the other day.
We’ve got a lot of young newbies manning the cash registers. I overheard one asked, by a more seasoned cashier who appeared to be training the person, “How long have you been out of checking school?”
“Three days” was the reply.
How interesting, thought I. I didn’t know there was a school for that and, with only three days of training before assigned a store and a register, that’s a pretty quick turnaround. But it’s good to see people, who must and need to work, being able to work. Some of those young people may be supporting their entire family.
At any rate, a newbie casher held up one of my items and asked me, “What is this?”
“An ostrich egg”, replied I.
It wasn’t, of course, an ostrich egg, and I’ve no idea what made me say that it was ... where that reply came from. I was just being funny, and it took everything I had to lie with a straight face, until I saw the puzzled look on the young cashier’s face, whereupon I burst out laughing and fessed up to the item’s true identity.
Just out of curiosity ... is it just a young person’s thing not to know what this is, or are some of you reading this not able to name this item?


Friday, August 21, 2020

Well, Now I’ve Seen Everything

“Oh no!! I am sorry to hear this”, was the reply I received yesterday to ratting out the unsanitary unsafe conditions at the craft store the day before. “The safety of our customers and staff is our number one priority. Please rest assured that your voice has been heard. I have directly addressed your concerns with the store leadership to ensure that they are aware of all the opportunities they may have to improve your experience going forward! Thank you for bringing this to our attention!”
I can’t believe the “store leadership” had to be told to sanitize the carts during a pandemic, as I’m sure “store leadership” must have observed how carts are cleaned for use between customers to avoid contamination in other shops/stores. I also can’t believe that, with all the long line of shoppers I’ve seen lined up to enter the craft store, these many months, that no one else brought up the issue.
Maybe they did ... in person and were ignored. It’s not so easy to ignore internet complaints that go beyond “store leadership”.
So that’s the end of that, but I’ll be sure to check on compliance next time I’m in that area ─ which won’t be for a while.
Under the category of  “now I’ve seen everything”, my friend the Archeologist commented yesterday on my facebook posting about Snoop Dogg’s wine ... “download the app so the label talks to you on your phone!”
What’s she talking about, a talking label? thought I, but okay, I’ll look into it.
Following her suggestion, I came away with just the coolest thing I’ve ever seen
So cool in fact that I went to the adult building next door and asked a friend of granddaughter’s, who works there, to record what was coming up on my phone so I could show you.


It’s augmented reality (AR). The phone scans the label and it comes alive ... talks to you.
The app indicates that every face on 19Crimes' bottles are real flesh and blood people. “Rebels and poets. And each was sentenced to punishment by transportation, banished to Australia for committing one of the 19Crimes. Download the experience to hear these historical convicts tell their incredible stories”.
Maybe it’s me, maybe I’m easily fascinated by such things but, next time I’m at Sprouts, I’ll have to check out the story behind two other faces I took photos of because they looked interesting and I'd wondered why they both looked so rough and what they'd done to earn a spot on the bottle.



Thursday, August 20, 2020

Death by Chocolate


That trip out of the area to pick up a gift from Sprouts led me down an unhealthy side trip.
Remembering that, last time I checked to see if and when See’s Candy Store was to reopen, I learned it’s open already ─ but to online orders only.
Jonesing for See’s for some time, and since my trip back to the complex from Sprouts was going to take me within a block of See’s, I decided to see how online worked.
The way it worked was I couldn’t say give me two of this, two of that and end up with a small manageable bag of candies. Instead, in order to get the candies I prefer, I had to order a custom mix box, the smallest box being one pound.
Me with a one pound box of candy is suicide the hard way, but what the heck. My gut has been acting up for no reason at all. I might as well give it a reason. I placed my order and, while getting dressed to head out, wondered how long it would take to get notification ready for pick up.
Didn’t take long at all. Pick up notification came while I was still getting dressed.
First on my list of errands was to drive past the closest Sprouts to the furthest because that’s where I saw a bottle of Snoop Dogg’s 19 Crimes ─ a wine Snoop put out for the summer. They might have had it at the closest Sprouts as well, but I didn’t want to take a chance of aggravating myself if they did not, so I drove a few miles further out of the area to where I knew it was in stock.
It was the eye-catching photo on the label that grabbed my attention, but I didn’t think to purchase it as a gift for Twin 1 ─ the drinker in the family, until I was back at the complex. Thus, having to drive all the way back today, but I got it.


A bottle for Twin 1, a souvenir bottle for my non-drinking self.
Now I’ve got to go online and research the best way to preserve a bottle of wine because I won’t be delivering to Twin 1 until it’s safe for me to travel and be around people again, or safe for people to visit me.
Before stopping off at See’s to pick up that box, I gassed up the car and what a joy it was not to have long lines at the Costco gas pump now that so few of us have to gas up. Same with the craft store.
I’ve not been inside a craft store since the pandemic began but, when driving away from the gas station, I passed the craft store and saw no line outside, I parked and walked right in to pick up two floss colors that were getting low. There was a third color. They didn’t have it in stock, but I can easily order online from another source.
Though it was nice to be able to shop instore again ─ and there were only seven other customers, I felt icky and unsafe because staff did not sanitize the carts. A fact I realized after I began walking with the cart and noticed that as a customer exited, placed her cart back in place, the next person to enter would get that unsanitary cart ─ like I probably got the cart used by the last customer to place it there.
I thought of abandoning the cart, returning to the car and disinfecting my hands with the wipes I keep there, coming back in and wiping a cart down myself but decided it best not to walk in, shortly walk out, turn around and walk back in ... because of the optics.
When one is Black, one must ALWAYS be aware of the optics.
Having experienced store employees eye me suspiciously for no reason at all ─ just because I was me; that time a security guard went from leaning casually up against a wall to standing at attention when I walked into a clothing store, then glaring at me, never taking his eyes off me as I shopped; the time I spotted security up high on a staircase, looking down, watching me as I sat outside the store, looking through purchases; the time security followed me at a craft show; and multiple other instances of shopping while Black, including the security guard at Best Buy last year/year before. It’s maddening, it’s frustrating, insulting, but it’s something I’ve learned to live with and minimize, as best I can, by doing nothing to draw further attention to myself. I carry no bags inside, wear a fanny pack instead so it’s obvious I don’t have anything to stuff other things into, and I wear tight fitting clothing ─ leggings and athletic top, to make it also obvious I’ve no place to stash anything.
It doesn’t always help to avoid being profiled, still I’m conditioned to always being aware of the optics. To try not to do anything that looks remotely suspicious. Something I wish the younger generation would be more aware of instead of saying to hell with the optics, expecting Karens, Kens, stupid cops to change and, instead, getting themselves roughed up, shot, killed.
Like that fool walking around Walmart with a toy rifle he’d picked up from one of the shelves. A customer called the cops, thinking the rifle was real because ... you know ... Black guy. He ended up shot dead while shopping by responding cops.
I’m not saying getting killed was his fault ─ though Kahlil Gibran does say in The Prophet that “the murdered is not unaccountable for his own murder”, but it kinda was his fault because, as a person of color, you have to know when to hold ‘em, when to fold ‘em, when to put the toy rifle in a cart ─ take the optics into consideration, because you can’t change other people’s perceptions. One just has to be aware others do have these perceptions, be cautious of where one goes, and what one does once one gets there.
Walking in, walking out of the craft store to get wipes from the car, would have looked suspicious. So, I toughed out the icky feeling and cleaned up with wipes when I finished shopping and got to the car.
But don’t think for one minute that I didn’t go online, look up the store’s facebook page and put the unsanitary unsafe conditions on blast.
After the craft store, it was off to my last stop ─ See’s.
Nothing to complain about there. I didn’t have to fight the usual ton of traffic entering the shopping center, and was able to park up close to the entrance.
Access to the store was blocked off.


I stood at the roped off area, a worker came out, took my name, went back in and retrieved my order. Easy peasy.
It was coffee and candy for lunch and yes, I did get sick, but I’m still breathing. Probably because I didn’t scarf down the entire box. Ate just a few pieces and put the remainder in the freezer for when I next crave chocolate ... or for when I wake up the day after election to learn 45 did actually cheat his way into another four years. After which, I'll off myself by drinking that bottle of wine and ingesting all the remaining chocolates.

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Time on My Hands?

With no place to go, nothing to do except needlepoint, playing PokémonGo from my unit ─ don’t even have to get off the couch and GO to do so, Candy Crush and Alphabet Saga on the laptop, trying to catch up on recorded TV programs, I still find myself falling behind on to-do’s.
I’ve Woman’s World magazines backed up from October of last year, I’ve fallen behind on books to be read ─ having yet to finish Walter Mosley’s Trouble is What I Do with a new one (Blood Grove) due to release in February.



It seems being forced inside due to the pandemic ─ minimal distractions, while others are struggling with the boredom of it all, I myself am experiencing a lack of time on my hands ─ not enough hours in a day.
Prime videos are not being viewed, though the heat woke me up super early this morning and, instead of putting in a few hours on that more pressing needlepoint project ─ which I’m hoping to finish by Christmas, I logged on and viewed Anatomy of a Ballet Dancer, a documentary on Marcelo Gomes, which was worth syphoning off time from the more pressing to-do’s.


You wouldn’t believe it ─ black woman, braids, into country western music, line dancing, but I’ve been fascinated with ballet since childhood. Not that I ever wanted to dance ballet, I’ve just always been fascinated with the artistry and beauty of it and, of course, have read about and followed Misty Copeland’s career.
In fact, little known fact  I don't think even a fact my family knows as none of them really know me, who I am as a person, but I love not just ballet but opera. Took operatic singing lessons in my early teens. Also took piano and violin. Didn't keep up with any of those pursuits, for one reason or another, but wish I had.
Since it seems I’m never going to catch up on recorded TV programs, with new ones to be recorded ─ such as Big Brother and the upcoming Fargo, I’m going to have to make decisions about what’s important to view, what is not.
For instance, today I’m going to delete Worst Cooks in America, because that series is over and a winner announced already.
Hell’s Kitchen is still in production, but I’m pretty much done with Chef Gordon Ramsey yelling at folks, so I’ll delete all those.
I don’t know if Barskins, “the story of indentured servants transported from Paris to the wilds of New France in 1693 to clear the lands”, finished Season 1 or just went off the air, but I can delete those as I’ve lost interest.
I’ve just about completed viewing all the episodes of Murdock Mysteries and am so hooked on that series that I’m anxiously waiting what’s next with him.
With all those deletes, that will clear up my to-view’s for newer shows. The reading isn’t likely to be caught up until after I complete the needlepoint project, at which time I’ll be an entire year behind in Woman’s World reading and books up the ying-yang.
It’s too hot to go outside today, but I passed up on an item that called my name last time I was at Sprouts ─ not something for myself, but something I know someone else would love. The item won’t let go, so I’ve got to take a drive out that way to pick it up.
Oh, and by the way, I am not watching the convention and I’m staying away from anything having to do with the election because it’s just all too upsetting ─ all the things No. 45 and his minions are doing to cheat their way into another four years.
Wake me when all is said and done. Wake me when it’s over.

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Other Side of the Mountain

Heading out of and into my area involves driving over a small mountain road with an S-Curve, a route I've not taken in weeks due to staying in my unit, leaving only for groceries at the corner market.
City girl that I am, when returning from the dental office around noon today, rounding that S-Curve, spying big fluffy white things on the mountain side, my first thought was “There's giant flowers growing on the mountain. Where did they come from?”
It took me a nanosecond to realize the flowers were moving, so I made a dangerous U-Turn, pulled into a turnout on the other side to get a closer look.


It’s sheep! Not something you see every day in this area. In fact, not something one sees EVER in this area.
Once back at the complex, I did a little online research and learned they’re probably Big Horn, having wandered down from the mountains. As to why they are this far down, my guess is it has something to do with the fire we just had, day before yesterday, way up high on that side of the mountain.
But such an interesting sight.
Things went well at the dental office. They appear to have taken every precaution possible ─ seating set up for distancing, masks, temperature check, even had me gargle 30 seconds with a mixture of peroxide and water before the hygienist began her work ... a new hygienist, but I don’t know how long she’ll be my hygienist as she had a protruding belly. I assumed pregnant, but didn’t verify by asking her about it because I’ve put my foot in my mouth a time or two asking a woman when her baby was due, only to be yelled at that, “I’M NOT PREGNANT!”.
If she’s still there in six months ─ my next appointment, belly still protruding, then I’ll know not pregnant. Or if still there, and belly flat, I'll know she WAS and has since given birth.
My very handsome dentist, Dr. McDreamy, didn’t find anything wrong in the x-rays. That’s always a relief ─ not because of the cost involved in dental procedures, but because of the discomfort. I hate pain.
McDreamy appears to have gone a little soft and pudgy, physically speaking, but he’s still dreamy in my eyes ─ silver hair, blue/green eyes, warm and comfortable looking.
I’d mention in a previous post that although McDreamy is now up in age to where I’d have thought he’d have retired, he probably can’t because he became a father late in life  has a young son to see through Junior High, High School, College.
How he came to be a dad is an interesting story.
He’s married to a beautiful Black woman, and when I say beautiful, I mean drop dead gorgeous.
She was a hygienist in the office. There was no hanky panky between them, but he must have thought about it, been attracted to her because he was there for her when she tried to kill herself.
I don’t know how she tried to kill herself, by what means, but she landed in the hospital and the office was shocked. No one knew she was unhappy with her life at that time but, when her attempt at killing herself failed, McDreamy went to her hospital bed and asked, “What are you doing?” Meaning in trying to kill herself.
From there, her life drastically changed, ending with McDreamy marrying her (lucky girl), after which her life became staying at home, going on cruises with him, taking care of him. Then along came a son ─ a big adjustment for McDreamy at the time as he wasn't looking to having a child, wasn't quite sure how he felt about it. But it happened and he took to fatherhood, taking the child with them on the vacation cruises he's so fond of and it appears content with the life he now has (except for no cruises due to Covid) and often talks about what his son is up to.
Other than seeing sheep and Dr. McDreamy, both on the same day, nothing else going on in my life as I patiently wait for California and the Pain Cave to reopen.

Thursday, August 6, 2020

Walk Down Memory Lane

An interesting obituary popped up on facebook last night.


I did a little research and learned the obit is not new, it was published in 2018, but it brought up discussion as to how unusual it is to speak ill of the dead.
Why? I wondered. Why is it we tend not to speak ill of the dead … “ill” being the truth. Instead, the practice is to put the best possible face on a person in the obituary and overlook whatever misdeeds or characteristics might be unpleasant.
Reading comments to the post brought up a memory from when my ex-husband passed away.
I did not go to the funeral. It never crossed my mind to go. He was in the past. I didn’t hate him, nor did I like him. He was nothing, a non-entity to me. Did not exist.
I was ex-wife No. 2 of four — the only wife to give him children. He’d tracked me down and developed a relationship with his daughters when they were 10 years old, so the girls went to their dad’s funeral.
And, actually, it wasn’t that he tracked me down to develop a relationship with his children. Instead, after he tracked me down, he had his best friend call me at work and say something to the effect, “George is older now, wiser. You’re not getting any younger. You two should get back together”.
I scoffed and said "I'm not dating anyone over 25. What would I want with that old man? (he was only 15 years older than I), but if he wants a relationship with his children, that's fine by me".
Because he was in his daughters' lives after that, our paths crossed, but it was friendly and at arm’s length on my part while he was deluded and acted as though he felt I might still have feelings for him, even when he remarried …. twice more.
Sometimes he tried the poor me approach in trying to draw me back in .. AS IF, at one point telling me, when our paths crossed, that Wife No. 3 had left him. He’d returned from work one afternoon to find she was gone. Took ALL the furnishings with her.
In the telling ME of it, I guess he’d forgotten I'd also fled, and knew why No. 3 had left — but at least the only thing I’d taken with me were the clothes I had on my back and the babies. LOL.
Then there were a few times during his time with Wife No. 4 — whom I liked quite a lot, when George would feel melancholy, try the poor me thing again — once calling me at work, talking all sick and sad and sorry, saying he wishes we’d stayed together. (Yeah, sure. He was so crazed back then that he’d have killed me, the twins and himself). At any rate, I’d steer him back to reality, tell him he has a nice wife (meaning one who puts up with his awfulness, or was at that time) and should be happy.
So it was nothing to me when he passed away — while separated from Wife No. 4, but his girls, having developed a relationship, went to the funeral. And let me just add here the relationship they developed was not close. They got to KNOW their dad, could see why he was nothing to me, and even began to not like him all that much themselves. The girls just accepted him as being their dad and, consequently, were not happy when he passed away, nor were they devastated. It was more like … it is what it is.
Being his only children, they were fawned over by his old friends at the funeral and came back reporting that those friends — who had been our friends when we were married, were surprised I’d not attended.
I was surprised those former friends were surprised and said to the girls that “My time is valuable. Why would I have wasted it going to your dad’s funeral?"
Evidently, I wasn’t the only woman who thought he was a waste of time, because the girls reported that when the minister was eulogizing their dad — saying what I do not know, but probably the usual b.s. sugar coating ministers do to not speak ill of the dead, that a woman in the audience stood up, said “That’s not the George Raines I know!” and walked out. LOL
I wondered why she’d bother to attend — maybe to make certain he was dead, but it made me wish I had gone. Sounded like a lady I would have liked to have introduced myself to, had a chat over coffee with.

Sunday, August 2, 2020

Fire Season

No surprise, I knew fire season was coming and began organizing this year’s Go-Bag ─ just in case Little Mountain has its annual blaze.
What did surprise me was that one of the fires is carrying my name.


An odd name for a fire, thought I; and not sure if I should feel honored or appalled, I decided on being amused. No one was harmed by the Shirley fire, no one was displaced, no property destroyed so I posted the photo to facebook, with the caption “It wasn’t me. I swear” and got a good laugh out the reactions.
Then later, curious to know how a fire received such a simple name, I googled and learned 1)"wildfire names are created on the spot when the blaze begins ... a geographical location, local landmark, street, lake, mountain, peak, etc." or 2 "named by the dispatch center that sends the first responders to the fire, though sometimes they are named by the first firefighters on the scene".
Interesting, and inasmuch as I am not a location, "Shirley" must be the first responder/firefighter on the scene.
Crossing my fingers that Little Mountain doesn’t go up this year and, if it does, it’s handled quickly ─ we’re not ordered to evacuate. However, worst case scenario this year is a quandary.
Worst case scenario, in past years, has been to throw the go-bag in the car and wait out the danger in a hotel. However, in this Covid-infected 2020, a hotel is not an option, and I’d rather live in the car than bunk with either daughter. Twin 2 has a wife, stepdaughter, a dog, mood swings (menopause?). Twin 1 has no pets, but is doing that work on skid row and has her volunteer team coming in/out of her apartment ─ both situations bringing in God knows what kind of germs, so no.
That leaves granddaughter. She doesn’t have a dog, she has a cat ─ no pet is preferable, but I can tolerate a cat.
Sorry readers. I don’t mean to offend animal lovers. It’s just that I’ve not been a pet person since that incident with my mom and my dog Skippy ─ where we moved, Skippy did not move with us, and mom said she gave him to the butcher to be turned into ground meat.
Granddaughter owes me LARGE and now married to that rich white boy, living at the beach, professing to love me “so much” appreciating my “unconditional love” (all of which she expounded recently in a thank you note) ─ and little does she know it’s not unconditional at all. I just suck-it-up, do what spirit prompts me to do.
At any rate, granddaughter would be my option before opting to wait the danger out in the car and, if she’s not amendable, then I know to cut that spot out of my life once and for all, and the car it is.
So this year’s fire disaster plan in place, it’s onwards, upwards, with fingers crossed.
Word on the complex is the resident diagnosed with Covid has passed away. Word also on the complex is someone has moved into Nosey’s vacant unit.
I’ve seen no one coming/going, the blinds are shut tight, the unit looks deserted, but Next Door Neighbor tells me she’s seen lights on at night, someone going in during the day.
Time will tell.
I’ve been keeping an eye on the progress of that new senior complex, since last year, when first seeing a sign go up that it was to be built.
Last time I was in the area was middle of June and the building looked to be completed and about ready for occupancy.


Problem is ... it looks like a Plantation, and doesn’t appear to have open air access which, with Covid being airborne, living in a box with an elevator, doors opening up into a hallway isn't preferable. Plus, it’s restricted to those with extremely low incomes ─ 62 and over of age; single adult annual income of $15,000 to $31,000.
A box, that looks like a planation, housing the poor and elderly, but poor/elderly are desperate. I learned this week 500 have submitted applications to be considered for tenancy, 250 have been chosen in a lottery.
I'm thinking/hoping future senior housing construction will take into consideration how this pandemic spreads in close quarters and be more like what we have here ─ individual little homes, opening out into fresh air and sunshine.
We don’t have the best management/maintenance here, but it's not the worst and, looking at reviews of the management group staffing the new complex, seeing all the complaints at their other locations, it's like Nurse Ratched used to treat us; but at least the only complaint we now have is management/maintenance not giving a damn but, in this post Covid world, the fact it’s not a box with an elevator and hallway, we each have individual fresh air access, outside is grass, flowers, trees, well-maintained, is a tradeoff I can live with.
I’m staying until they tell me my income exceeds the requirements, kick me to the curb, or a fire on Little Mountain drives me out.