Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Lucky me.....

Somehow.....the Republicans think I am a straight ticket republican and the Democrats think I am a straight ticket democrat. I have been getting so many political notices and bulletins and newsletters from both parties that I am just about ready to bang my head against the wall. I especially love the ones where they nonchalantly ask you to donate $500, but if you can't manage that, please consider $250. They talk as if that's such a small amount. I guess it is to those that have plenty.

And that is just ONE facet of my exceptional luck. I've also been getting scads of phone calls. Is that a word....scads? Well, it sounds right so I'm leaving it. You get the idea anyway. I pick up the phone and its a recording telling me all about how bad the republicans are. Then 20 minutes later I pick up the phone to a recording telling me how bad the democrats are. I figure its just a matter of time and I'll be getting stuff from the "Independent party" or the "green party" or the Mickey Mouse party!!

The primary is in August so I have about 6 weeks of this garbage......then it will be coming down strong for the November election. I'm so fed up with it all. It doesn't seem like our elected officials do anything they say they will and once in office, they don't seem to care about any of us until its time for re-election. The one and only time in my life that I contacted my Congressman to help me with something I wasn't even given the consideration of a reply from him personally. He had his assistant talk with me and they were not even able to help me with my request. I'm remembering all that, by the way.

I think a lot of us voters are finally remembering a whole bunch of things. Bad news for some of those now in office. You all keep smilin'.....makes everyone wonder what you've been up to.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Another Movie Review.....

Sorry I haven't been posting anything lately. I just haven't found anything interesting to write about....although I have been reading and commenting once in a while. Seems like I've been interrupted more often than not lately. Lots of solicitors. I know everyone is trying to make money....but to try and SELL products or services in an economy as depressed as ours ludicrous.

Also I've been in one of my feeling sorry for myself moods. I just could kick my butt from here to Sunday when I get like this and even though I don't like takes a while for me to work myself out of it. I therefore am on the lookout for things that will make me laugh.

I don't know what you all think, but I think that good comedies have fallen by the wayside. Either that or my sense of humor has packed its bags and left town. You know how you will read that some movie is "hilarious" or that it had the viewers "rolling on the floor with laughter". I can watch a movie that has had stuff like that said about it and not crack a smile during the whole thing. Afterward, I will think to myself.....there must be something really horribly wrong with me. Have I have gotten to be a dull- spirited, crotchety, grumpy, old woman? I oh-so-did- not want that in my obit.

But I can say one thing....I never give up. I have faith that out there .... somewhere....are people who know how to make a really funny movie. So I keep trying and I keep watching. So many people are going through so much stress right now that we really need something to lighten our day and put smiles on our faces. Last night I was rewarded. YES! Last night I watched a movie that made me laugh more and louder than I have in years. It was hold your sides funny. It was clench your legs so you don't pee your pants funny

OLD DOGS.....with John Travolta and Robin Williams for starters. There are a lot of well-known people in this movie....Travolta's wife and daughter included. Its from Disney and because of that, its family friendly. I loved it and my daughter and I laughed so hard on several occasions we honestly had tears rolling down our cheeks. Yes, this is a keeper. I'm glad I bought it. Go rent it or buy it and watch'll get a kick out of it, I'm sure.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Have you ever been.......

scared? Really scared? The scary movie type of scared....but you can't shut it off like you can a movie. The type of scared where your common sense and your brain tells you you're being stupid.....but the rest of you just screams.....GET ME THE HELL OUT OF HERE! All your instincts tell you that this is DANGEROUS and for you to flee but you try and pass it off as an over-active imagination.

I've read that we humans have a built in .....radar..... for lack of a better name right now. We don't rely on it like we would have had to if we were lower down the food chain and lived in the wild, so we have basically dismissed it and we don't pay attention to it anymore. Big mistake! I always try to listen to my "radar". I, of course, will never know, but I do think its saved me a bunch of times. One time at a spooky RV campground comes to me the creeps just thinking about it. But that was one of those "you had to be there" type of stories and wouldn't make for good reading. However.....this one will.

This is another police story. How much more safe can a person be, you ask. Inside a police station with help only as far as the pressing of a microphone key. In the front of the building a fireman sleeps peacefully but is ready to respond at the mere flick of a red button on your desk. A person should be pretty secure. Should is the key word here.

Our little police station is located about 10 miles from the main "big" jail. We had a holding cell and sometimes there would be as many as four or five in there, awaiting transport to the jail. If they had bond coming, we wouldn't bother taking them down there....we would just accept their bond and release them from our site. As a dispatcher, it was one of our many duties to monitor the prisoners in the cell. This was before closed circuit TV was installed, so we had to physically walk back there and check on them every 15 to 20 minutes. What a pain! The male dispatchers didn't get much lip, but us females sure did. I've had more propositions and more insults levied at me than the average woman, that's for sure.

This one midnight shift, which had been pretty quiet by evidence of the empty holding cell, my officer radioed that he would be checking out a subject sitting in the middle of the five lane highway that went through town. Sitting.....crossed-legged, in the center turn lane. Its a wonder he wasn't run over but then again.....maybe even the cars were afraid. The subject was brought in and placed in the holding cell. He did have a warrant out of another department but he was definitely a couple sandwiches short of a picnic....either that or he'd taken some drugs and was zoned out. We never could tell which it was....sad to say. The officer put him in the cell and left. Now I am alone with this......guy. True the fireman is asleep up front but really.....I'm not going to wake him up to babysit me. I've been doing this way too many years.....watched way too many prisoners. The first time I check on him, he's sitting in the corner on the floor looking like Jack Nicholson looked at the very end of the movie, The Shining.....that "look" on his face. Chills went up my spine as I went back to the dispatch center. It was more than a little unnerving. Then I heard it. It sounded like there were 3 or 4 people in that cell. The guy was talking to himself and answering himself in different voices. You would have sworn that there was a bunch of people back there. I even went back and looked again just to make sure! I guess I could have put up with that except the one voice was Satan. He identified himself as such and it was pure evil sounding. It made all the hair at the back of my neck stick out, it made me almost freeze in terror. I tried to talk myself out of it.....told myself I had watched too many scary movies.....but the guy kept it up and it was terrifying. The things he said were terrifying and I wanted him OUT of there.

Well, of course the officers got busy and no one could come back for a while. I advised over the air that I'd like them to make this transport.....they asked if he was giving me trouble. Well, no, I couldn't say that he was.....cause he was only all those voices!!!!! The devil included. I knew I would forever be teased by the guys I worked with if I let them know just how scared I I hid it and put up with it for about 2 hours. I think I can honestly say that is the scariest experience I had ever had and I know it doesn't sound like anything in writing....but trust me, it was horrifying. It made me have a lot of respect for what some psychiatric nurses and attendants have to be around on a daily basis for their severe cases.

Yes....I know, I know. A lot of us pay good money just for the thrill of being scared. We read scary books and watch scary movies and TV programs......but we can always put the book down, shut off the movie and walk away and do something else if it gets too intense. Real fear is not like that. I hope I am never frightened in real life any worse than what I've just written about. Matter of fact, that one experience should do me for my lifetime, thank you very much. I don't need to be scared again period.

And even though I'm an old lady, I still walk a wide circle to avoid clowns.....I don't like them....they give me the creeps and I've always felt that way. I never let my children any where near them. I can't tell you why either.....its just that "feeling" I get and I'm not about to ignore it.

Anybody have some good true life scary stories they want to share? I know ya do.....we all do. LOL

Friday, June 4, 2010

Of Glasses and Smoke.....

We never suspected a thing because she never gave us cause to. It was the school that said she needed her eyes examined. So my oldest granddaughter went in to have her eyes checked and ...... unfortunately, she has to have glasses. She has moderate Astigmatism. She will turn 8 in a couple months and I just hate it that she has to wear glasses. I was probably close to 10 or 11 when I first started wearing mine. Her mother (my daughter) was about 10 when she first had to have glasses. I remember how the teasing from the cruel kids at school would bring on tears night after night.

We have hidden our dismay from her because we don't want her to feel bad or think she's ugly because she has to wear them. I just hope the cruel kids at school don't put her through too much hell over this. She gets them tomorrow and this is pretty good timing. She will have the summer to get used to them with no kids around to tease her. And yes......we remembered to insure them!

The other day at work one of the department heads waltzed into my office with a cigarette hanging out of his mouth. You know with all the cigarette bans in place, its unusual to see something like that anymore. Anyway at first I just thought he was holding it in his mouth because he was stressed or something but then I saw him take a drag and blow smoke out. Heck, he even French inhaled! I looked over my shoulder and whispered..."are you nuts?....You can't do that in here!". He laughed and took another big drag and blew the 'smoke' toward me. I noticed then that I couldn't smell it.

To get to the bottom line here......what he had was the new "e-cigarette". Ever heard of them? They look just like a regular cigarette until you touch it. Its made of plastic and its, of course, heavier than a real one. The end even lights up like its burning. The cartridge is the 'filter' part of it, which screws on. That is where the nicotine comes from. He said that one cartridge is the equivalent of about a pack of cigarettes. When the nicotine has gotten weak and used up, you screw on a new cartridge. The "smoke" is a vapor that dissipates, leaving no smoky trail. He is a heavy smoker and he said that he couldn't tell the difference in taste and/or enjoyment from a regular cigarette. They are not harmful to the environment, not harmful to others around you, including children and babies, and from what I understand....not even harmful to you. Its the tobacco and smoke that's harmful, not the nicotine...but its the nicotine that is addictive. This e-cigarette makes sure you get the nicotine in whatever strength you want....light, medium or heavy. He says the cost of cartridges equivalent to a carton is about $15. I guess that's a pretty hefty savings right there.

I used to be a smoker so I do understand. I've been smoke-free for over twenty years and never crave them anymore. They warn you not to partake of this e-cigarette if you're a I can't personally tell you what they are like. Anyone out there tried one of these yet? If they are as good as my co-worker says.....than this is a wonderful invention. Smokers can have their cigarettes without fear of harming themselves or anyone around them. Nothing smells of tobacco smoke because there IS no tobacco, so no odor. No worries of burning anything....its battery operated. The only downfall I can see is that you would have to make sure you didn't misplace it. Boy, I'll tell ya.....this is like having your cake and eating it too. I sure hope this catches on. I'm working on my daughter to try them. I guess the initial cost for the starter package is around $130. About the cost of two cartons of cigarettes.....and I guess the starter kit comes with enough cartridges for 5 packs of cigarettes.

Have a great weekend.......promise?

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

I'm not making this stuff up.....

honest. Memorial Day weekend is a time for family gatherings, picnics, BBQ's and reminiscing. My family is very small. My daughter suggested we get together for two days this weekend....Sunday and Monday. I was to fix one of her favorite hot weather meals on Sunday and then BBQ ribs on Monday.

Saturday I more or less vegged. Did some little things around the house and just enjoyed the lovely weather. Sunday I fixed the meal she requested. Its a simple meal so I didn't have that much time invested. The meal was ready by 3 pm. I put it in the fridge to chill and waited for her and her family to get here. We have argued many times in the past about her waiting until the last minute (when everything is all done) to show up and I made up my mind I wasn't going to do that anymore. Life is too short to be arguing about something like that. So when she wasn't here by 4, I will admit I was a bit ticked but let it slide. 5 o'clock came and went. 6 o'clock. I decided that if she wasn't here within a half hour I would go ahead and eat alone.....but I was not going to call her and chew her out for being late once again. She called me at 6:30 with a "Hi, how are you feeling today?" I said, I'm ok. Then she said, "what are you doing". I said, I'm waiting for you to get here so we can have our meal. Dead Silence. I said "hello?". She said...."Mom, that's tomorrow." I said yes, I know you're coming tomorrow too....but you requested we have a meal together today. She said once again....that's Sunday. I said Yes. She said that's tomorrow. I said NO....Sunday is today. Dead Silence. Then.....she said OMG, I have lost a whole day somewhere. I thought today was Saturday. Bottom line here.....SHE FORGOT. Because of her closed head injury, she does have memory problems, which makes me have to keep my mouth shut....when I'd really like to tell her off and say.....that's what calendars are made for!!! Sticky Notes! Strings tied on fingers!!! Needless to say, I ate was too late to do anything together by then. I was not a happy camper. I had made enough food for 5 or 6 people to have generous helpings.

So the next day, I start the preparations for the ribs early in the day and she does show up early also. We have a very nice day together. The meal was good and we watched a movie afterward. The only bad part was that she had to leave fairly early as my granddaughter is still in school and had to get up early the next day. I did not throw it in her face about her forgetting me the day before.....even though I really wanted to. Am I bad?

Tuesday I notice I have a new bill from my cable company and am upset, although not surprised, to see that its been raised $6.37......just like that. My cable company raises our bills approximately three times a year and its usually $3 each time. With the way the economy is, I just couldn't believe that this huge company has the guts to raise their prices once again. I figure we got the double raise because they neglected to raise it since the first of the year.....they've been too busy transferring channels over to digital I guess. Now maybe $6 doesn't seem like a lot to some of you, but it won't stop there....they will raise it another $6 before the end of this year and next year it will be the same. My bill for simple cable and internet is absolutely ridiculous but at this time I don't have much of a choice.....this company has a monopoly here and has had for quite some time.

I've been trying to cut corners everywhere I can to make my dollar stretch further. Last month I called my phone company and cut long distance from my bill. I rarely call long distance and if I do, I use my cell phone, which is also the most basic you can get. Its a no-contract 300 minutes a month phone I have for emergencies. I can make long distance calls without paying anything extra as long as I don't exceed my minutes. I can still make long distance calls from my house phone but I will be charged 12 cents a minute if I do. This adjustment shaved off about $18 from my monthly phone bill. So you can imagine my disgust when the cable company comes along and ups my bill over $6 a month......just because they can.

I called my cable company and I admit I was really disgusted with them when I did. When I finally got through to a human, I asked for an explanation of my newest bill and also to confirm that my bill had been raised. I wanted to yell at her but restrained myself. After all, its not her fault. I asked if she could transfer me to billing since she didn't really handle that area and she said there would be OVER a 20 minute wait and did I still want to transfer or maybe call back later. I figure a whole lot of customers are calling and complaining about the price hike, although it shouldn't come as a surprise anymore. This is a very greedy company, I fear. I opted to call back later.

Three hours later I called back and waited for 18 minutes. I spoke with one of the nicest ladies and she helped me trim down my cable bill. I thought I had the lowest package but I did not. Now I can only get channels below 100 but those are the ones I look at the most and the ones that the grands look at the most too. She even threw in a promo for me giving me $10 a month off because its a new plan. She said it will last for a year. I was impressed because its going to save me $22 a month! I'm hoping that in that year's time, either this company will realize how ridiculous their prices are and lower them .... or another company or two will come into our area and they'll be forced to lower them due to competition or I can switch.

Speaking of saving money. I recently shopped online at my favorite store......Kohl's, and managed to get my granddaughter a bunch of summer clothes....2 bathing suits, sandals and tennis shoes....everything was on sale, most of it 50% off, plus free shipping to boot. I'm not getting paid to tell you this....I just plain love that store. Their line of clothing is well-made and if you wait for the sales....very reasonable. For clothing for me.....they are not so good....but for the grands, its absolutely perfect. I have three stores that as far as I'm concerned have exceptional clothing for kids. Hanna Andersson I buy from online and the clothes are really expensive so I watch for sales only. Kohl's and Old Navy are the stores I use to buy the girls' most of their clothes. Great stuff and great sales. Check em out. This is not an ad.....this is my opinion.

Also my vacuum cleaner quit working. Its a good name brand and it just doesn't want to suck up the dirt anymore. I checked and re-checked and I can't find a clog, but obviously there must be one. The machine is not that old either, but its out of warranty (of course). I have found out that it will cost more to take this one in for repair and cleaning than it would for me to buy a well-known brand vacuum that's on sale right now. So I bought the new one for $67. ..... $100 regularly. We live in such a throw-away society and I really wish it were different but as long as they make it cheaper to buy new than repair old, this is our fate. I remember my very first glimpse into the throw-away mentality was about 15 years ago. I had a problem with the keys sticking on my computer keyboard at work and our tech company came out, unplugged it, plugged in a new one and tossed the old one in the trash. I stood there with my mouth open, not believing my eyes. He calmly told me that no one fixes keyboards, they are routinely tossed. Well, I guess I've had my say about a bunch of different things today. LOL. Hope you all have some good stuff happen to you and remember to keep smilin'.