Saturday, July 26, 2008

OH - For a Self Cleaning House

Well, it's been a busy week for both of us with work and church stuff. On our day off, we wanted to relax and enjoy each other's company. As a result of all that, coupled with a bit of procrastination, the house looks as though a bomb hit it. I think that ground zero has to be the kitchen with a bit of splatter to both bathrooms. Other areas look as though a cat exploded, throwing hair here and there. Now, while I've seen far worse and while neither of us is a neat-nik, it needs some attention. I have a feeling that when I am off on Monday, it will be a kitchen, bath and laundry day. If we can put people on the moon and if we can invent all kinds of "labor saving" devices, why don't we come up with a viable self cleaning house? At the moment, I can say, "Thank God we don't have to worry about yardwork." If we did, I'm afraid we'd be looking at a weed infested jungle. Ah well, it may be a mess around here at the moment, but it is OUR mess. Hug someone.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Where Did It Go?

I was amazed yesterday at how quickly the money seemed to fly away. I had some errands to run and a few things to pick up and by the time I got home I had spent almost half of the check I had just deposited. It was time to renew both my license plate and my drivers license (a quick 75 bucks). Then I renewed two generic prescriptions at the big "W" store (another 30 bucks). Then it was off for a few groceries (a cool 80+ bucks), and finally I got some needed computer paper and a few cheap pens for work (22 bucks). That totalled over 200 dollars in about 2.5 hours. And I still need to get gas and write a check for a graduation gift today. Not bad -- work nearly a week on this new "high-paying" job and spend it all on the day off. That seems to be the American way. I came up with a new slogan last night about the job. "M (abbreviated employer name) -- a job, not a career." I will keep that in mind when the difficult guests come up to complain and rant. Well, tomorrow it's back to work to pay for next week's day off. Hope your money is better grounded than mine. EEK!!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Why and Who Cares?

I don't know about you, but I am tired of hearing the stories in the media that bring into question the sexual orientations of sports figures, politicians, celebs, and more. My first question is, "Who cares?" Does it matter to me who someone is sleeping with? I know that publicly affirming one's sexual orientation helps to provide role models for GLBT people and for heteros who are trying to figure out what makes us tick. However, making someone the latest grist for the rumor mill or publicly outing someone does absolutely nothing for either the GLBT community or for that individual. If Actor "A" is gay and chooses to not come out, that is his or her own business and none of mine. If Politician "B" inhibits GLBT rights and actually is gay, that might open the door to some public scrutiny, but in the end it is still her or his business. The bigger question in mind other than who is or isn't gay this week is this -- Why do we do this horrible stuff? How would you like it if I called your boss, your spouse, your next door neighbor or someone else close to you and outed you (or hinted that you MIGHT be gay)? Is the GLBT community really so shallow that we have nothing else to do but stick our noses in someone else's private business? Why does it matter? Are we trying desperately to justify our own lives by saying, "See, so and so is gay too"? We need to become much more self assured and self accepting rather than spending our time doing unto others what we would hate to have done unto us. I know this post won't be popular with some folks, but hey -- it's my blog. And just for the record, I am gay and proud. And that's the way I see it.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

What a Week

Well, folks, it's been almost a week since I've posted anything here. That is partly because I have been dog-tired what with the new job and all. It amazes me how hard people will work for the minimum wage. It's hardly a get rich quick (or ever) scheme, and I don't think this is a career move for me -- but it is an existence. Last week I put in about thirty hours;this week will be closer to forty (but it is still "part time"). For the most part, the co-workers are all right, some more helpful and friendly than others, and none of them mean or hateful (so far). The guests (in common lingo that means customers) likewise for the most part are pretty decent folks. There are those few who drive me up the walls. For instance:

1. The other day I had a woman at the register with three or four small and unruly children with her. They wanted to go on the pony ride (you know the kind in the front of the big "Mart" type stores). She was doing NOTHING to keep these monsters from grabbing at stuff, screaming, trying to spin the bagging carousel (which made it pretty tough to hit the bags with the groceries. And SHE has the right and privilege of being a parent? Hmmmm.

2. The woman who was not only upset but furious that a cashier had rung up an item twice on her order. I grant you, she was justified in letting us know and getting the adjustment, but she went on and on as though the cashier was either an idiot or had done it to her on purpose. And she couldn't handle this stress because of her heart. If she had simply come and asked for the money back, the stress level would have diminished and she'd have been fine -- but no -- she was the wounded one here and everyone (everyone) had to know about it.

3. Then there was the guy that I somehow overcharged for his tomatoes. He came back to my lane (3 customers later) and wanted an adjustment. I told him he would have to go to the service desk for an adjustment. Then he decided he didn't want them at all, to which I replied that he had to go to the service desk to return them. He blew a gasket and yelled that it was my fault that he was in the @@@****$$&&#* store 20 minutes more than necessary. I choked back my suggestion as to where he could stick his tomatoes -- after all, he was the guest and I was the grunt.

4. Today I had a woman guest with two big carts of groceries (so we know that this was not an unplanned stop). When I got about two thirds through her order, she discovered that she didn't have her check book (and apparently no cash, credit cards, or common sense either). That meant suspending her transaction while she called her hubby to bring the checkbook (after he searched for a new pad of checks). Fifteen minutes she was back at my register with the needed check, so I had to make another guest wait while I went through the process of receiving her check -- I didn't have to ring anything up again, but the computer had to reprint the entire register tape - and it went on and on.

5. And lastly, there are a few who want to be the exception to policy. This is especially true on the matter of returns. Our return policy is clearly stated and we do make some exceptions, but what some of them want is way beyond an exception -- they almost want an exemption so they can do whatever they please. I wonder if their mothers told them that they were more important than everyone else or if they are simply assholes. LOL

So that's it for Wednesday. You all have a good week and be kind to those cashiers. They work their asses off for YOU. Hug someone.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Home Again

Hi all; well, I am back home after spending a couple days caring for Mother and the dogs. It was a nice time, but it is nice to be home again with Ben and the animals. I worked this afternoon spending almost 7.5 hours in front of the computer learning about the company history, shrink prevention, hazardous materials, sexual harrassment, and more. YAWN. How exciting. I will be working the next 8 days in a row before I get a day off, but at least I will be free to go to my niece's graduation party. Oh goody!! Anyway, since I just got home I think I should go spend some time with my man. Have a good evening. I know I will.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Spending Time With Mom

Well, it's been a fun week so far. Monday morning I left home about 6:15 to head over to spend a couple of days with Mother while my sister and family are away. In the midst of all that, I started my new job on Monday afternoon (only 2.5 hours Monday) and then back to Mom's. It means getting her meals and making sure she has what she needs. Of course, it also means caring for their two dogs -- and these dogs are definitely missing their people and their routine -- one of them seems to have an upset digestive system today (cleaned up three indoor piles of poop). And the dogs had me awake at 530 this morning (the click click click of doggy toenails on hardwood floors). Took Mom to a doctor appt this afternoon that was a real waste of time. After waiting in the exam room for nearly a half hour, the doctor came in for about 5 minutes and really did nothing but ask how she felt and told her to continue the super duper antibiotics and come back in six weeks (after the doctor's vacation half way around the world. The entire visit could have been as easily accomplished by telephone and saved us time and gas as well as the stress on Mother of getting to and from the car and the office. And on top of it all, I bet she and Medicare get billed for this visit too. Ah well, that's life. Tomorrow afternoon I report back to work for a day of CBT (that's computer based training) learning and then home to Ben and the kids. He tells me that he had the dog and both cats in bed last night -- good thing I wasn't there -- where would I have slept? Ah, can't wait to get back to my own home, bed, and man..... Love to you all.

Friday, July 04, 2008

RIP Jesse Helms

This nation lost a dedicated lifelong public servant today as Sen. Jesse Helms passed away. Now, I agreed with little that came out this arch conservative's mouth. He opposed most of the things that I stand for and stood for many things that I am against. His anti[everything rhetoric was horrid and hurtful to millions. BUT he was doing the job to which he was elected to the best his abilities based on his beliefs and such. I have seen several posts today from GLBT sources gleefully reporting his death with relish. Such gleeful reaction to the passing of a former US Senator is horribly rude and immature. It also gives some degree of credibility of the attitudes held by Sen. Helms and his cronies. It is also terribly insensitive. The man left a loving family and scores of friends and colleagues who are grieving his passing. If the roles were reversed and the conservatives gleefully reported the death of a prominent GLBT activist, the community would be up in arms. Are we so damaged that we can justify being so hateful and immature? I extend to the people of North Carolina, to Sen. Helms' family and friends, and the US Senate prayers of comfort and peace during this difficult time. To those who want to revel and rejoice in his passing -- grow up!

Independence Day Thoughts

As I sit here this morning on the 232nd birthday of Independence Day, I have very mixed feelings about how much to celebrate. It is true that many have given their lives (physically, emotionally, financially, etc) for the life and liberty that we enjoy and that too many take for granted. Yet, as I ponder words like "liberty"', "freedom", and "independence", I wonder just how they apply to many of us. We are not free from our dependence on foreign oil. Many of us are economically trapped by rising prices, lower wages, fewer jobs, rising debt, and the like. Many of us are prohibited by law or by simple discrimination from freely expressing our love for the person whom we have committed ourselves too and from enjoying the same rights and privileges of our heterosexual counterparts. As I watch the news, it seems that our government often has us in a stranglehold -- oh yes, we the people elected these folks to represent us, but do they? Or do they represent the special interests and monied lobbying groups who can fuel their re-election campaign with much needed money? It is impossible for an average Joe to get nominated for or elected to the office of the President, although there are some highly capable and qualified people who don't have the name recognition or huge net worth that it now takes to get into nearly any office. Mind you, I am not proposing that we scrap the US or our way of life. What I am suggesting is that as you eat the picnic dinners, play the games, watch the fireworks and all that you not take liberty for granted. It comes with a price -- that price is learning to work and live side by side with people who, in many ways, are different from you -- different ethnicities, different religions (Contrary to the beliefs and preaching of some, we are NOT a Christian nation), different orientations or family structures, different economic levels, different educational backgrounds, different political opinions, and more. Even with all those differences (and those I've missed), we are Americans. Sometimes we work to change others, sometimes we have to work to change ourselves, sometimes we have to agree to disagree, but still we are all Americans bound together by principles and a legacy that transcend all that "stuff" that separates us from one another. Pause today to remember not only the flag waving and bumper sticker kinds of patriotism, but the deeper historically ingrained patriotism that allows us to love this country while at the same time recognizing that we are not perfect and that we do not have all the answers. Enjoy this day of celebration, but also remember to work to preserve and strengthen the fabric of these United States by being informed and involved and by being willing to listen to other views and to speak out against injustice. Freedom is hard work -- be a part of it or risk losing it. And that's the way I see it today. Happy Birthday, United States -- you are a grand old gal!

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Hope on the Horizon - Part Two

Well, I got a call a few minutes ago to let me know that my background check came back clean. That means two things: 1) I am not indebted to my potential employer for bad checks or shoplifting, and 2) I start my training on Monday afternoon. So, life goes on -- of course I will be making about half the amount on this job that I was on the last assignment. And it could be hours anytime of the day or night -- ah, twenty-four hour retailing. But it will give my life some much needed structure. I guess if there's anything I want to do or such, I'd better get it in between now and the weekend. Let the adventure begin!!