Wednesday, August 31, 2022

But Wait …. There’s More

This week has just been filled with blog fodder.

I was just about to take my morning shower when I spotted EMTs heading down the walkway, six of ‘em.

Seeing them turn into the entryway to where Karen lives in the bottom unit, the Talker upstairs, I naturally assumed Karen was at it again, but then I saw Talker come into view.

Asking if everything was okay, she said it was her brother. He was having a temper tantrum — slamming doors, got violent.

I don’t know what actually is wrong with her brother, whether he was born the way he is or had an accident. I’ve never asked, would never ask, but his condition is that of being a full-grown man, with a facial deformity and mind of a child.

If you’ve ever seen the movie Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, there is a character called The Blaster. Blaster is completely covered in armor, so you don’t see the face that goes with the muscular body.

When Mad Max defeats Blaster in the arena, which pisses off Auntie Entity — played by icon Tina Turner, the mask falls off and Mad Max sees a smiling but distorted face with the eyes of an innocent child. That’s exactly how Talker’s brother presents — facial abnormality and all.

Talker is figuratively and literally her brother’s keeper, his caretaker, moved him in with her when she first moved here because his previous caretaker — their mother, passed away.

Though her brother would never want to hurt her, Talker is leery of him when he has a temper tantrum because, with his size and strength, she would be hurt.

On this particular morning, she said he didn’t want to take his meds, began slamming doors, got violent, so she fled the unit, called 911. EMTs arrived but were giving her a hard time because they didn’t want to take him.

Take him where, I don’t know, but she was also trying to reach his doctor because she said she’d been telling the doctor something was wrong with the medication causing him to be less and less manageable.

I commiserated with her having so much responsibility and that I knew all about doctors not listening, EMTs not wanting to take him because it seems that’s how it is in the world these days — no one cares, no one wants to do their job.

In fact, I just the other day sent my doctor a message saying essentially "Thanks for nothing", because I received no medical assistance when I had that rash. I included in the message all the information I’d gathered on that dermatologist the medical center has entered into a contract with — not responding to doctors' approvals to schedule patients, the negative reviews, no one answering the phone, yada yada yada.

But I digress.

Back to the Talker.

In the midst of the chaos, she said she’s diabetic, had just taken her medicine, it wasn’t safe to go back inside her unit, but she needed to eat something sweet. I had a few pieces of See’s candies I’d been keeping in the refrigerator in case of an emergency — the emergency on my part being when I just couldn’t take not having something sweet, whether it made me ill or not, so I gave her those.

"I only need one", said she.

"Take ‘em. You’ll be doing me a favor", said I.

When all was said and done, the EMTs talked her brother down, walked him out to the ambulance.

I’d assumed they taken him away but, if they did, they didn’t take him far because, I stopped for gas after this morning’s workout and heard someone call my name.

It was Talker and her brother pulling up to a pump.

"Everything okay?" asked I.

"I’m taking him to the doctor", said she.

I looked at brother, said — as if he had control over his behavior (but you never know), "You be nice to her because she’s a good sister".

I myself have an early morning appointment at the medical center tomorrow — get my second, last and final Shingles shot.

Next up is the annual flu shot.

Did you hear there’s a possibility of a 4th Covid shot next year, and we’ll have to pay for it?

Tuesday, August 30, 2022

Holding Pattern

The excessive heat warning we've been under is serving to keep everyone indoors, giving folks time to think, calm down. So, we’re currently in a holding pattern as we wait to see if there’s to be any fallout from Sunday’s incident. Fallout either for Wheelchair Lady yelling at Head Maintenance Guy and taking photos or HMG for yelling at Wheelchair Lady.

As for me, I’m just wishing my life away ─ anxious for the weekdays to go by as I look forward to the weekends and anxious for the months to go by as I look forward to October ─ my favorite time of year because it’s Halloween month.

Coming back from Monday’s workout, with a stop by the market after, I spotted two young brothers jump into a sporty black car that pulled into the complex driveway from out of nowhere and quickly speed off with the brothers inside.

I knew something was wrong with what I’d just seen, but didn't grasp who what why and, of course, my hands were full of bags ─ workout bag and grocery bags, so I couldn't take a photo, get the license plate of the sporty car.

Spotting a resident on the walkway, intently looking in the same direction as I at what had just happened, I said something about the sporty car speeding whereupon he said he’d caught the brothers ducking down between residents’ cars ─ trying not to be seen. He assumed to pick out which ones to drive off with.

He said they’d been here before, were chased off and that he’d been trying to call the office, alert staff the culprits were back but everyone in the office had gone to lunch.

I’m wondering if one of the two was that same young man I’d mentioned in an earlier post. The one Casino Lady observed jumping the wall one day.

Casino Lady and her sister chased him off, but he returned at 5:00 one morning, broke into one of the cars, causing the alarm to go off.

Hearing the alarm, she gotten out of bed, run to the window, yelled to him that she’s calling the police, whereupon he ran and jumped back over the wall, out of the complex.

Feels like we’re being targeted because, all of a sudden, young brothers are crawling all over us.

There was a knock on the door this past Sunday and I did a dumb thing.

I assumed.

Assuming it was Next Door Neighbor, instead of walking into the kitchen, checking through the kitchen window as to who was at the door, I instead opened the door.

It was a seedy looking brother purportedly there to sell me something or other.

Seeing him, I couldn't get the door shut quick enough as I said, "No thanks".

Later that night, thinking the worse ─ that he was canvassing the place, deciding on whom to victimize, just in case he was a rapist and me not unattractive, I slept with my Michonne katana next to the bed.

He did come back, but fortunately not for me.

That same day as those brothers were here, as I was returning from dropping off next month’s rent check to the office in the afternoon, I saw Assistant Maintenance Guy ushering that same seedy looking brother off the premises.

He had a sketchy looking woman with him.

AMG said they were soliciting, and he'd escorted them off because there is no soliciting allowed on the premise.

I told AMG he’d been here the day before and I think he’s casing the joint and brought a woman with him this time because he thought we’d think she made him look safe. That one of us would now open the door and let them in.

The woman didn’t make him look safer, because she looked even more dangerous than he.

So that’s all we need ─ to be sandwiched in between a non-caring management structure and targeted by criminals because it’s so easy for them to parkour over the wall, we have no security and present as easy marks.

Monday, August 29, 2022

Gettin' Hot in Here

Twas another eerily quiet calm before the storm type weekend over here.

Then, along about 6 p.m., hearing a dog sounding like it was in pain, I got up from my perch on the couch and saw one of the wheelchair residents literally hauling arse down the walkway while holding onto her dog’s leash.

I don’t think the dog was accustomed to moving as fast as she was going, because he was letting out squeals of protest.

When I saw her turn into the entry way to Red Lights' unit, I went back to watching whatever TV program I was viewing, figuring she’d just come to discuss next Friday’s party with Red Light — a surprise birthday party the two are planning for the Baker at bingo.

I know about this party, and who the planners are because, after Friday’s bingo, this particular wheelchair lady approached me, asked if I’d like to donate cash for the party.

Of course, I did and I did.

So, anyway, shortly after I’d gone back to what I was doing before hearing the dog protesting the pace, my cellphone rang.

It was Red Light.

"I just had a visitor" said she.

Oh, did you now.

"It was ____ (wheelchair lady) and she is PISSED".

Thus, the road rage pace.

The story is Wheelchair Lady (WL), while walking her dog (at a normal pace I assume), saw cars parked all over the front parking area and an event going on inside the Community Room.

This disturbed WL because, when she and others have recently asked to book the room for a private event — which used to be allowed for residents, at a fee, to celebrate anniversaries with family members and friends in attendance, birthdays,, they’d been told that could no longer permitted because of the pandemic and resultant variants.

So, she’s seeing this party going on, gets mad, starts taking pictures to confront the office with our being told no.

All of sudden someone comes storming out, "WHY ARE YOU TAKING PICTURES?!!!"

It was Head Maintenance Guy (HMG).

"You should have seen his face" said WL in describing the scene to Red Light.

I suppose that meant he was angry.

Seeing it was staff having an event only served to make WL even angrier. "WHY IS IT OKAY FOR YOU TO HAVE A PARTY BUT NOT US?!!!" she yelled back.

HMG didn’t expect her to come at him that way, with logic and matching his tone, because his response was "Talk to the Manager" and he went back inside.

You can bet she will.

Some of these old people are stronger than others.

It will probably end in more double talk, but wheelchair lady has photographic evidence and she’s pissed.

Knowing how vindictive management can be, I’ll not be surprised if this doesn’t come back on ALL of us in some kind of way ─ a notice posted to our doors perhaps stating this is private property, no photo taking allowed; but I suggested next time staff has a party, an alert should go out and all us seniors should go out front, sit and watch.

With temperatures soring this week ─ it’s expected to be 106˚ by Thursday (the power company better not do a flex alert and shut our A/C down), and tempers flaring ─ management being rude/disrespectful, and seniors getting fed up with management doing whatever the hell they please at the expense of residents, it’s gettin' hot up in here.

Something is bound to give.

If I didn't have a workout on my schedule for tomorrow morning, I'd go sit in the Community Room, with a bowl of popcorn and cup of coffee, wait to see/hear the fireworks.

Stay tuned.

Saturday, August 27, 2022

The Plot Thickens

Inasmuch as Upstairs Lady and I are creatures of habit — sit in the same seats at bingo, at the same table, I was privy to more tea on how things are going with Downstairs Lady.

I do realize that not all disabilities are obvious, but commonsense and from what I’ve observed, Downstairs Lady has not the mobility issues to justify a downstairs unit.

That same observation has not been lost on Upstairs Lady.

She wasn’t upset that she did not get the unit, saying management is keeping a list of those requesting to move from upstairs to downstairs for medical reasons and those others are ahead of her on the list.

Seems to me that the more serious cases would be moved to the top of the list, but oh well.

What upset Upstairs Lady is that no one on the list got the unit. Instead, this new neighbor was brought in from out of nowhere and given that prime real estate. Not only that, but another senior — whose name I did not recognize — and who I can’t imagine has a disability worse than Upstairs Lady that made him next in line, had already been told he could move from upstairs into that downstairs unit.

Being told the unit was his, he’d made preparations, including change of address while the unit was being cleaned. Had mail already coming to the unit then BAM!!!!, the unit was taken from him and given to this woman who came out of nowhere.

It occurred to me, and I did say to Upstairs Lady, “I suspect nepotism. I suspect that, because times are hard, rents are off the chart elsewhere, that management is bringing in friends, relatives, friends of friends”.

"I’ve had the same thought", said she and added that when she went to the office, to discuss the how and why and that she’s not observed the new resident showing any disability that would warrant her getting downstairs, she was met with rude responses, going in circle responses, and defensiveness.

Responding in circles is nothing new, and getting defensive signifies there is definitely something to hide — nepotistic hanky panky going on AND I highly suspect reverse racism as the residents being treated thusly are Caucasians.

Management is not Black — in fact, though they don't walk all over us as much as they do the Caucasians, it would not surprise me to learn they have not a single Black person working at any of their properties or at corporate, so it’s not us indulging in what looks to me to be reverse racism.

Nepotism is nothing new around here.

When that mean Nurse Ratched took over managing the complex back in 2013, she first brought in her nephew and, with obviously no prior experience, assigned him as an Assistant to our long-time amazing Maintenance Guy.

Once her nephew learned the ropes, she promoted his lazy incompetent arse to Head Maintenance Guy — making our long-time amazing Maintenance Guy his subordinate.

I guess she was hoping Amazing Maintenance Guy would quit but, when he didn’t, she fired him.

He and his wife had lived here since the building first went up, wanted to continue living here as residents, were qualified to continue living here, but Nurse Ratched would not let them sign a lease and kicked ‘em to the curb.

Next she brought in her mom, gave her a unit.

Mom is still living here and we don’t know how many other relatives or friends or friends of friends were brought in during those horrible years when Ratched was manager and are more than likely still living here.

It is what it is.

When all was said and done, my last words on the subject at bingo to Upstairs Lady was, "Things have a way of working out. It will eventually catch up to them."

Her last words were, "I hope that when they get old, they end up in a place just like this, get treated the same way they treat us".

If you will recall, inasmuch as I no longer wear my lucky shirt to bingo — because being cotton, it's beginning to stretch, feels big and clunky now, I didn’t expect much luck at bingo. But then I won a game wearing the leopard face mask.

Debra (She Who Seeks) theorized the mask is my new lucky attire, so I wore it last time.

There was not a win, but I thought perhaps it was because I didn’t wear the matching leggings.

This time, I put the two together — leopard mask, leopard leggings and it turned out to be a winning combination.

I won Game 6 and snagged that soup cup I’d coveted three weeks ago.

It was still there because, every time a winner approached the table, I telephatically sent out "Don't take the soup cup, don't take the soup cup, don't take the soup cup".

Speaking of a plot thickening ...

Thursday, August 25, 2022

Patio Refresh

After putting in all that time, research, energy into patio chairs — egg shape, hanging swing, hammocks, benches, the patio refresh project is done.


Yep, that’s right, nothing I looked at pleased me so much as that which I had before, so I went with another red Adirondack.


The difference is this one folds.

Also, supposedly, this one is "fade resistant, rain resistant, the UV resistant High Density Poly eco-friendly material of which it is made will not split, crack, peel under heat of direct sunlight".

Assembly was required and though I had the option of paying extra for the seller to contract with someone to come by, assemble for me, I opted to put myself through the torture of assembling myself. After all, after deconstructing the old chair, seeing how parts had been connected, how difficult could it be.

The instruction manual said 30 minutes.

It only took me four hours.

I’m thinking four hours was worth not having to deal with the aggravation of the seller contracting with some third party that, if they failed to follow through, do their job, the seller would wash his hands and leave me to deal with it — much like my medical provider contracting with an outside dermatology that never followed through and the provider could care less.

So anyway, the patio project is done.

The egg-shaped chairs were really calling my name because they look to be fun, are cute and very popular right now. However, I didn’t trust the hanging chain or spindly base to hold on the affordable ones, and the ones that stood on a solid base were too expensive — not to mention I didn’t think either would hold up under the weather.

Turns out I was right about the affordable ones as there are hilarious fails all over the internet and social media where people have fallen straight down, backwards or flipped over when one of those chairs failed.

See for Yourself.

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Should Have Known

There was no ulterior motive behind management arranging an ice cream social for us yesterday because there was no ice cream social.

Heading down to the Community Room at noon, I first ran into signs posted to entry doors indicating the social had been cancelled.

Continuing on to the Community Room, I found four residents sitting/chatting at a table.

"She’s not here" they said in unison.

The she they were speaking of is Activity Director who, it turns out, was hosting the event as part of her job responsibilities to provide occasional entertainment for us seniors — generally Arts & Crafts.

I should have known, thought I.

"Why am I not surprised" was my response to the ladies saying Activity Director was not here, the event cancelled because, as mentioned elsewhere in the blog over the last few years, that is her modus operandi.

Back in the good old days, she’d call the Baker and my buddy Apache, say she couldn’t make it and give them instructions to do her job for her — carry on with the event, tell them what to get, where to get it and have attendees sign in so she could submit a sheet showing she did her job even though she didn’t.

Apache is banned from the premises and the Baker long ago got fed up with being Activity Director’s stooge — because Activity Director was often rude and unappreciative, so thus it was no Pizza Tuesday distribution and no Ice Cream Social yesterday.

Heading down wasn’t a total waste of my time, as I did learn the identity of the pervert known as "Bill" who I was warned to be careful of because he walks the property at night, exposes himself to women who happen to be out and about.

Having previously been told he’s one of the guys who congregate out front, outside the gate smoking, and seeing just such a group, I asked, "Which one is the Bill I’m supposed to be careful of?"

All the ladies at the table knew who I was asking about. One had a run in with him.

They all chimed in on saying he wasn’t one of the guys on the lawn at that moment and went on to describe him as the "Tall thin guy who walks fast and lives around the corner from …"

Holy Smokes! I knew who that was. Had passed and greeted him many times. Once I’d received a package by mistake that was addressed to another resident. I’d walked it over to the correct unit and he’d opened the door. The package was meant for his wife.

It’s scary knowing I was that close to the pervert, had waived and exchanged pleasantries many a time. Fortunately, he’d always been respectful with me.

Hearing from the other ladies at the table about his nighttime activities — not being able to keep his zipper closed, asking one of them on a date, dealing in pills, all I have to say is, "His poor wife".

The new resident — the lady that got the downstairs unit across from the grassy knoll (let's call her Downstairs Lady), seems a busy little bee. Not only do I see her quickly moving down the walkway, on the go to wherever, but I spotted her early yesterday morning tossing water onto her patio and then cleaning the patio by sweeping the water off and later sweeping the area outside her door.

There was a time when residents could hose their patios off. However, when we had that drought back in 2015 and mean manager Nurse Ratched (Manager No. 2) was in charge, she didn’t trust us seniors to comply with the drought rules, so she ordered residents remove water hoses from patios and then had maintenance cut off the spigots to make sure we’d not be able to reattach hoses.

To this day that worries me there are no spigots, because it leaves us unable to protect ourselves in case of fire before the fire department arrives.

So anyway, there the Downstairs Lady was, being a busy little bee, and looking to be in better shape than I, while I later observed the resident that really needed the downstairs unit (let's call her Upstairs Lady) struggling to get her groceries up the stairs.

What she’s doing is to first push her cart/walker under the stairs, remove a grocery bag from the cart, reach up and place the bag high up on the stairs.

Next, she begins the trek up the stairs, reaches down, grabs the bag previously located halfway up, carries it up the remainder of the stairs.

Depending on how many bags she has to get up the stairs, she repeats the process, then lastly brings the grocery cart/walker up.

As you can see, I wasn’t exaggerating when I said she really needs a downstairs unit and should have gotten the one that opened up.

Monday, August 22, 2022

Calm Before the Storm

This past weekend was eerie quiet. The only signs of life were seeing the new resident walking through the quad a time or two and Painted Rock Lady dropping new rocks along the walkway.

Other than that, I didn’t see or hear the voice of a single other resident.

Not that I’m complaining. I enjoy the calm. I’m just suspicious as to WHY. It can’t be that everyone suddenly turned into me, opting to stay inside all weekend. Nope, my spidey sense is saying something’s in the wind.

Perhaps it’s anxiety over the ice cream social Management has planned for tomorrow.

Last time they did a fun event for us ─ the Summer Social, it was to soften the blow of the rent increase posted to our doors the very next day. So, justifiably, I’m now wondering what’s behind the ice cream social, and I’m sure others are suspicious as well.

I’ll go down to the Community Room tomorrow, check it out, but won’t be surprised if no one else shows up.

Nothing new on Black Bikini.

Though I wasn’t outside over the weekend, I did keep an eye out for her hanging around the pool all of last week, but no sighting.

At this point, I’m now beginning to think she may not have been a new resident but perhaps visiting a resident for a few days.

With no distractions and staying indoors all weekend, I’m at last caught up with getting those almost 200 photos into the Creative Memory album. Actually, it was albums — plural, because the photos took up all the space in not one but two new albums.

With not much planned through the end of the year — except maybe the Mission Inn 5K, few photos will be coming in and I can devote my attention to that never ending needlepoint project.

Spending time on Tik Tok last night I ran across "Michael Cohen Reacts".

You remember Cohen don’t you … one of the many who lost their careers as a result of their involvement in No. 45’s shenanigans.

Well, it seems that prison time served as an awakening to having been used and tossed aside. So now he’s out for revenge by spilling the tea and reacting to current shenanigans ─ the Hearings, the raid and it’s all so hilarious.

His latest reaction is about No. 45’s desperate search for the mole — who the informant in his close circle is that told where to look for specific documents. Cohen is certain it’s Jarod.

Wow. Wouldn’t that be a kick in the head if it turns out to be.

Friday, August 19, 2022

Plants on the Patio

Arriving early for yesterday’s Lab appointment, I was able to get in some reading time on Randy Rainbow’s book.

During a previous reading, I was surprised to learn that he once worked as a Hooter’s Girl — the first male host at Hooters NYC. He didn’t wear the tiny orange shorts the girls did. Instead, he was dressed in khaki and white polo shirts.

I was even more surprised to get to the part in the book yesterday where he mentioned having been a blogger — Right here on Blogger under the blog name "The Randy Rainbow Bloggity Blahg-Blahg".

He’d blog about the reality TV show he’d watched the night before, the Broadway musicals, his dating life, his "excruciating" subway ride to work.

Once the blog gained a following, he changed the name to "The Perez Hilton of Broadway".

I got called in for Lab work before getting to the part of the book that tells when he stopped blogging and why. I’ll have to put my nightly Tik Tok obsession aside (not likely) and, instead, keep reading.

At last week’s bingo, I got into conversation with the resident who lives in the unit upstairs over the one that used to be occupied by the invalid lady — the 98 year old that recently, after 22 years here, the last 10 unable to care for herself, made the decision to move in with her son.

This resident I was talking to (no blog name as of yet) was telling me she wanted to move to that downstairs unit.

She certainly needs to because it’s painful to watch her struggle up those stairs. It’s painful to watch her walk … period, because of an issue with her legs

Her legs are very heavy, knees don’t seem to bend but she’s not on a walker. She manages to get around, to walk, by leaning right, leaning left, propelling her body to where she wants to go with those repetitive motions.

It hurts me to watch her struggle, but she seems well adjusted to her condition. She manages her grocery shopping, she rides the bus, she even packs up her luggage and goes on an occasional trip. She’s very independent, but she needs a downstairs unit.

I’ve seen lot of the seniors, some recently, trade upstairs for downstairs due to medical conditions and this resident said she’s requested the move, her doctor gave her a letter to submit to the office indicating she needs that downstairs unit, but she didn’t have much hope she’d get it.

When I asked why, she said that she and another resident that needs and asked to be moved downstairs, are not liked by management.

I didn’t ask why but it’s easy to guess it’s because management doesn’t care for residents that give them a hard time — complain about their not doing their jobs, cause trouble for management with various agencies … like my buddy Apache did.

Noticing yesterday that someone appeared to have moved into that unit — the black box attached to the railing no more, replaced by plants on the patio, lights on, I was hoping it was she in the process of moving downstairs.

But noooooo.

Seeing a new face walking through the quad a couple times today, I finally got up from my perch on the couch to see where she was going, and she walked into that downstair unit. She’s the new resident and seems lithe, not needing to be downstairs.

I’m thinking that, because of how difficult it is for the upstairs resident to get around, that the noise of her stomping around — noise that probably did not annoy the invalid lady due to hearing loss, is going to create a problem for the new resident. Management may regret not switching things around.

Lastly, and sadly, for those of you who may not have heard, our blogging buddy Madge is no longer with us. She fought the good fight but has lost her battle with cancer.

Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Woman with the Red Chair

Known the first few years around here as "The Walking Lady" because I was doing laps around the complex, and last few years as "Lady with the Red Chair on her patio" (laps are now done on the college campus) residents accustomed to seeing the chair, as they stroll by, are going to think I moved.

The pieces are ready to be taken down to the dumpster when I return from this morning’s workout.

Rather than carrying the pieces down in bulk, wrapped in bags, I’ll have to transport them down carefully, piece by piece, in order not to impale myself on the broken vampire-killing stake like areas like these …

Next on the agenda is to prepare for tomorrow’s fasting blood test.

Shouldn’t be too difficult, as I don’t eat anything after 7 p.m. anyway and, as my appointment is 9 a.m., it shouldn’t be too rough to hold off on breakfast until after that time.

When I had that in-person session with the doctor last week, she mentioned a bone density test, which I declined saying "I don’t need it".

I strength train. My bones are fine.

Nevertheless, I got a call a few days ago — "Your doctor has authorized a bone density test" and after asking if I was in a wheelchair or had a hip replacement and other age-related questions I don't recall, an appointment was scheduled for next week.

It would have been a waste of my time and energy, but I let it go. THEN, after thinking about it, I got mad.

My thinking is that inasmuch as I only go the medical route when it’s something I can’t solve on my own through holistic measures, don’t bother the doctor for every little thing — even go outside of plan for eyewear because their Optometry does such a poor job that, when I do seek medical attention, it means I really need it and should get it.

That not only did not happen with the doctors I ran through with the rash situation, but I’ve yet to hear from dermatology.

I went in for a rash, ended up getting a Shingles shot and now scheduled for a bone density test — things I’m sure they are billing Medicare handsomely for, but no help with the one thing for which I sought help.

I called yesterday and cancelled the bone density test.

While still angry, though I no longer need dermatology (turns out the rash was an allergic reaction to brown rice flour), I called Member Services to vent.

They’ve sourced with an outside dermatology institute.

That’s interesting.

Dermatology used to be part of the medical center’s operation.

Getting the name of that outsourced institute, I went so far as to call.

No one answers the phone there.

Looking up Yahoo reviews, I learned the institute did me a favor by not following up on what the doctor ordered.

Their reviews are along the lines of "Horrible Service!!" ... "Calls are outsourced to a call center".

I didn’t get a call center. I got no answer.

"Office staff is rude and inefficient!" ... "Go to a different Doctor!!" ... "I would not recommend this office" ... "My experience with this dermatology doctor is very bad. If I had to give negative or 0 I would definitely give him zero".

Sounds like just another nightmare I don’t need to put myself through. So, if they ever call or send me an appointment card — which I doubt, it’s a big fat no thanks.

I’ve been with this HMO since my early 20’s. They've made some mistakes — like for decades diagnosing my food allergies as an ulcer, prescribing valium, et. al., and like killing my youngest brother's wife, but at least there was service.

As for HOW they killed my youngest brother's wife ... she regularly got mammograms but ending up dying from undetected breast cancer.

I guess they perform the tests but are not good at reading them.

They tried to kill Twin 2 as well. Poo poo'd her symptoms, prescribed medication rather than figure out the problem until I read her symptoms of fibroid tumors in a magazine and urged her to tell them what I suspected, insist on specific treatment, which she did and eventually got.

Now that there are not only mistakes, failure to diagnose correctly, but no service at all, I'm going to ask around to see if things are like this all over or if there is a better, more reliable, more responsible medical provider.

I did get a survey asking me to rate the doctor that looked at the rash, said "I don’t know what that is" and though disappointed in her lack of medical knowledge and giving me that shingles shot, which I now have to get a second dose and shingles shots every year, I don’t want to give her a bad review.

Being as how she’s a Black woman, her journey through medical school and being hired on by the HMO can’t have been easy.

I can’t give her a good rating. I won’t mess with a Black female doctor's career by giving a bad review, so I’ll not respond to the survey.

If it turns out she’s a lousy doctor, it will catch up with her but, from the lousy service I’ve gotten recently, seems she fits into the program just fine.

Tuesday, August 16, 2022

When You Snooze You Loose

Not able to get that animated haunted tree off my mind, I went online yesterday to order. Lo and behold, this early in the Halloween season, it’s sold out already and is not available anywhere.

There are lookalike inflatables available, but I don’t do inflatables.

I usually do cute stuff for Halloween. However, thinking I’d be a vampire if we have a party and wanting a haunted tree on the patio, got me to thinking why?

Why have I gone dark?

Looking at the continuing police brutality against POC, the unrelenting determination of the Alt Right and stupid No. 45’s supporters, I think it’s my feeling of hopelessness coming out as vampires and haunted trees, rather than the usual candy corn.

So, anyway, after thinking about the unavailability of that rather large tree, it occurred to me it was probably for the best because the outdoor storage area already looks like a prop shop. There’s no space for that particular tree.

I decided on a smaller more manageable version.

On tap for today is dismantling the red Adirondack chair.

It’s so rickety weather worn that I can probably smash it to pieces by sitting on it or tossing it off the balcony. I’ll instead take the safe route of dismantling with the electric screwdriver.

I wasn’t going to blog about an interaction between Red Light and I that occurred Saturday before last because, though puzzling, I didn’t think it important and because — in what would probably surprise her, I didn’t think Red Light was important, worth a second thought. A vete a la verga, if you will (Thanks Bob for that awesome new curse word).

Reading on Dawn’s blog this morning that today is her birthday (Happy Birthday Dawn) brought the interaction back to the forefront of my mind, segued into adding to today’s post.

Insofar as my neighbors, except for the crazies — whom I avoid altogether, I walk the middle path by maintaining friendly relationships, careful to not get too close.

That works out well as it keeps me an observer of the drama, never in it and, being an independent party, people like to think I'm clueless as to what’s going on and can’t wait to spill the tea all over me.

I, of course, play it up like shock, awe, it’s the first time I’m hearing the tea, use it for blog fodder.

So anyway, I know Red Light has had several disputes — is disliked by her upstairs neighbor (there have been complaints to the office about Red Light and vice versa), disliked by her own next-door neighbor the Smoker, and recently my Next-Door Neighbor told me about telling Red Light, "Lose my number Don’t call me again!"

I guess Red Light was getting bored when, Saturday before last, she turned her attention towards me with the text — "When is your birthday?"

Back in March, when Red Light invited me to lunch with herself and the Talker, sensing she was trying to get too close even then, I declined — using my food issues as an excuse. In all honesty though, I said no because my spidey sense told me to not trust her knowing too much about me. She’s okay as a neighbor and gives good blog fodder, but she’s just not the kind of person I’d have as a friend.

From the way people around her are dropping away, I guess I got it right.

She’s a bit of a troubled soul, has gotten into EVERYBODY'S business. Even tried to turn me against Painted Rock lady, which didn't get anywhere because PRL hasn't done anything to offend me personally.

Red Light even recently called Corporate and made a complaint about Activity Director being incompetent and rude to the seniors.

She isn’t wrong, but why reach out that far about something that’s been going on for years before you came on board, hasn’t impacted you personally but you decided to make an issue?

Long time readers of the blog know I don’t celebrate my birthday.

Birthdays in the family were celebrated when I was coming up, but so rarely that I learned not to expect or want so as to not feel hurt; but even if I did celebrate my birthday, I’d not be comfortable with giving Red Light my exact date. No telling what she could do with that data.

My reply to "When is your birthday" was "Thanks for asking, but I don’t celebrate my birthday for personal reasons".

"Sorry I asked" was her snippy response.

I mentally called her a bad word — the "B" word, went on with my day.

Expecting she might still be mad and a little standoffish days later at bingo, seeing she was not, I attributed it to a moment of frustration about not being able to penetrate the shell I’ve placed around myself.

Oh well. But best not to try me further because you're bored and curious.

Monday, August 15, 2022

What Can’t a Rolling Stone Get?

It appears Younger Sister isn’t the only person to have led a sheltered existence, grew up under a rock because, when a young woman, as part of the latest TikTok trend, walked around her office and asked her coworkers, "What Can’t a Rolling Stone Get?" no one knew the answer.

Who ARE these people? was my thought. How could they not know the answer?.

I could understand when the previous trend was to ask — "It’s 7 o’clock. Where’s Usher?" because not everyone knows Usher’s music. However, even if you’re not into music ... period, one has to have heard the song that is the answer to the question, "What can't a rolling stone get?" because the song is so iconic.

In case you’re wondering ... I’m not going to say what a rolling stone can’t get because, of course, you all know the answer. However, inasmuch as not everyone is familiar with singer/songwriter Usher's music ... the answer is a play on his song where he sings "It’s seven o’clock on the dot. I’m in my drop top, cruisin’ the streets".

Ergo, the answer to "It’s 7 o’clock, where’s Usher?" is "He’s in his drop top, cruisin' the streets".

So, anyway, weekend over, it’s back to the same ol’ same ol’.

After spending Saturday getting a pedi, no mani and looking at patio chairs, I returned to the complex, pulled out my little sushi machine and tried out the sushi knife that arrived a few days earlier.

I wasn’t planning on springing for a legit sushi knife — they’re too expensive, but tired of sawing sushi with a kitchen knife, seeing an ad for one of those expensive knives at half price from a reputable Cutlery shoppe, I gave it a go.

Smooth like butter.

I’ve been making sushi all weekend.

On Saturday, the filling was leftover salmon, avocado, carrot, cucumber.

Sunday’s filling was a recipe I’d been wanting to try — yam and avocado.

Yam sushi was the best because it had a little sweet taste to it. I’ll use that recipe again, but maybe add kale.

There's still enough left for today's lunch.

Having decided on an Egg-Shaped patio chair, I did my homework and learned the affordable ones made of bamboo are not a good bet. I get direct sunlight on my patio, while the care section indicated they need to be in the shade and protected from rain/water — not at all weather resistant. Egg-Shaped made of iron or steel was suggested.

Found one I really like.

It's described as being made of “steel frame and handwoven PE wicker that withstands the elements and can survive outside”, but it’s waaaay too expensive, comes in three parts — which reviewers did say were easy to put together and, lastly, it weighs 330 pounds.

I don’t think I can manipulate the three pieces at, let’s say, 110 pounds each. Plus, 330 seems too much weight for the patio.

I don’t generally sit outside anyway, so I’m going to save myself grief and money by trashing the old red Adirondack chair and leaving the patio bare.

After all, a bare patio gives me more space to fill with Halloween and Christmas decorations.

Saturday, August 13, 2022

Wrong Again

Arriving at the nail salon, I could see more bulbs have burned out on the sign.

It now reads “acial waxing”.

Which is an improvement on the “racial waxing” it previously displayed.

Arriving on time, I was immediately seated, and the pedicure began in a timely manner this time, but the guy receptionist/manager still got it wrong.

He once again failed to book a manicurist.

Just as Kim was finishing the pedicure, she asked, "Are you going to get the same color on your nails?"

"I’d planned on it but, since no one has started on the nails, let’s take that off the bill".

"I’ll do it for you" says she.

As I mentioned the last time that guy got it wrong back in March, and Kim had to step in and do both, she’s an older woman who can do wonders on a pedi, but makes for a lousy manicurist.

I had to ask her to correct areas where nails she’d shaped appeared lopsided and, once back at the complex, I had to do 911 with an emery board, to smooth jagged edges. Not to mention the paint job didn’t last two days.

Inasmuch as I can do a better job on my own nails, I declined her stepping in this time. However, not wanting to hurt her feelings I made out like I didn’t have any more time to spend in the salon.

The guy who screwed it up again and who runs the place like a plantation, ever watchful on what the girls are doing — working or talking, came out of nowhere to see what was going on.

Speaking to him in their language, she must have told him there’d been confusion as to who was doing the manicure.

He turned to me and said, "I thought you said Kim was going to do it".

Knowing him to be a screwup, trying to avoid another mishap when I'd booked the session, I'd attempted to lock in the name of the manicurist by asking him "Who is going to do the manicure?".

"Whoever is available" was his cocky answer so, at that time, he knew I was looking for a manicurist and should have written it down next to the appointment.

Lucky for hin, while seated in the chair having the pedicure done, I’d been plugged into the Apple iPod, and was listening to a medication tape.

The speaker has just said the secret to a harmonious existence is to not react to appearances of discord, stay calm. So, all mellowed out, I just calmly said, "No" held up two fingers, continued with "and this is your second time" then slowly shook my head as if to say you poor pathetic fool.

He kept apologizing.

I did not say don’t worry, it’s okay, because it wasn’t. I just gave him that I'm disappointed in you look and shook my head.

Maybe if he paid more attention to what he himself is doing, rather than keeping an eye on the girls, working them like slaves, he’d not make so many mistakes.

So, anyway, I stopped off at Ulta Beauty on the way back to the complex, purchased a color to match the toes and will do my own mani some time tomorrow.

The trip to Floor & Décor was enlightening. The business should be called Floor & Walls, because that’s all I saw and nothing I’d classify as décor.

Fortunately, construction on the next-door Home Store had been completed and the store was open.

Looking for a new patio chair, I was drawn to one of the Egg-Shaped chairs and will probably go that way if I can find a store that delivers a fully assembled chair.

Walking through the front door of the store, this is what I saw.

They ready.

Of course, I had to browse the Halloween Isle. Captured a few photos of gnomes to show Debra (She Who Seeks).

Couldn’t resist buying this little guy for myself.

I'm seriously thinking about going back and getting this spooky tree.

I don't imagine we'll have a Halloween Patio Contest, as that was a one-time deal concocted by Manager No. 9, and he's gone. But I always decorate for Halloween anyway, so why not.