God! Please SHUT HER up!

I thought at first it was just me. I thought, “Dude, you’ve lived away from huge herds of people for too long.” Well, that is a true statement. I thought I was just too sensitive and reactive to strange noises. The difference between living in a house in the mountains, to living in an apartment in the middle of a city.

I thought I’d adapt in time…

Well time has passed, and I’ve adapted. BUT there’s only so much I can do without gouging my ears out.

The problem:

Guy downstairs, he’s really kind of messed up. But he’s not the problem. It’s his son, who has a girlfriend who lives her life like she’s in a telenovella. I’ve come to believe that it is physically impossible for this woman to walk past anything with hinges and not slam it. Doors, Cabinets, Car doors, Car trunks, you name it. About the only thing that she can’t seem to slam shut is her legs.

She seems to think that arguments are foreplay. And from the many, many, many, sleepless nights I’ve had she seems to like sex a lot. 

Picture a Fran Dressher voice, only not as nice… Screaming obscenities, punctuated with “Don’t you love me?” At the top of her lungs all night, every night. When she decides to have a fight, (easier to count them times when she’s not fighting, screaming, and bitching.) she starts by slamming every available door in reach. We’re talking slamming doors so hard that the whole building shakes. There have been a few times when my bed moved like we were having an earthquake. But no it’s just this tempestuous ball biting bitch.

That’s not all. 

When she slams the front door and storms out of the apartment downstairs she always comes back. Usually to find she’s locked herself out of the apartment (or been locked out) then she starts beating on the door to be let back in. When that fails, she starts pounding on the bedroom window (right below my window) or she climbs over the railing to their patio then starts pounding on the sliding glass doors.

If she were in a house, it would still be unseemly but it wouldn’t be keeping everyone in the general area awake with the pounding on the doors and windows while screaming like a harpie, (maybe banshee is a better description.)

Last night was particularly bad. She didn’t end her howling until well after 2 am.

This was the fourth night in a row.

This morning after I called out sick at work, I did get a couple hours of sleep. Only to have her start bitching and screaming at 5 am.

Yup, I was awakened AGAIN. 

I thought about yelling down to her boyfriend, “Thow a bone in her or buy her a big fucking vibrator!” In the end, I though better of that course of action. Instead, I showered, shaved, had breakfast, then went to the property manager’s office.

We had a nice chat. Turns out that she’s well aware of the problem and the circus is being evicted on Friday. Hum, apparently I’m not the only one in the complex who’s tired of not having any sleep. So I’ve been thinking about buying a patio chair and plenty of popcorn for the last episode of this Telenovella. I can sit on my patio with my feet up, a stiff drink, popcorn, and watch the Sheriff toss this trash out on the curb. Hopefully there’s going to be violence, so the whole lot of ’em get tossed in jail, and that goes for her nasty little dog too!

 I think there’ll be a block party when these people go.

I know I’ll dance a little jig, just before I lay down on my bed for well deserved sleep.

I think it serves him right – United Passenger

United Plane


So the way I heard the story, is that a United flight had to make room for a flight crew at another airport. United asked for volunteers to give up their seats, to be bumped to the next flight.

Four people said, “Sure” then ONE of those people, a Doctor realized that the NEXT flight was the NEXT day. Then decided he was too important to wait because he had patients to attend to so he needed to be on his original flight.

Dumbass Passenger

The first thing that pops to mind is… Hey DUDE perhaps you should have looked before your leapt.

I’ve been in this situation. I’ve been the guy who gave up his seat for other folks in an overbooked situation. I’ve also been the guy who gave up his seat to a person like this Doctor when they realized that the next flight out was going to be crazy later than they thought it would be.

(In that instance the flight attendants asked if there was someone on the plane who could afford to be late. In fact, in my case it was a United flight. The airline treated me like a king, nice hotel room at the airport on the airline’s dime. A really sumptuous dinner, and the next day… They put me in First Class to get me to my destination.)

Dumbass Passenger2

It was all very civil and I’d volunteer to get bumped again if it came to it.

From what I understand, at around this point things went WAY off the rails.

The video clip I saw is indeed disturbing, but some passengers on the flight are saying this guy lost his shit and became a raging asshole. (Again, DUDE you probably should have payed attention to what you were volunteering for.)

Anyone who’s flown in recent years knows that if you cause a ruckus you’re not going to be on a plane. It doesn’t even take much of a ruckus, you are at the mercy of the flight attendants, the TSA, and the Air Marshal.

BUT there’s always some moronic asshole who thinks they’re more important than anyone else.

So guess what snowflake? Your ass is going to be dragged off the fucking plane.

Yeah maybe this guy got roughed up, but he had a simple choice. He could cooperate like a civilized human being and allow the Airline to see what else could be done… OR he could pitch a hissy fit and get dragged off the plane.

Well, we know what this idiot did.

But for me there is another issue…

This guy caused a scene, got dragged off a plane, and delayed 200+ OTHER paying passengers, not to mention whatever trauma his actions caused to the children who might have been on that plane witnessing this insanity, and not understanding what all the fuss was.

He’s a Doctor for god’s sake. Pull out that AMEX Gold and buy another ticket on another airline get home, then send your grievance to United. Hell, they’d probably have just refunded the cost of his ticket, or given him a travel voucher.

There is absolutely no excuse to delay a bunch of other people getting anywhere because you don’t like something.

Put your shit away, Sit DOWN, Strap in, and Shut the fuck up.

Or in his case, take it off the plane and deal with it like a fucking man. This guy, acted like a spoiled child according to witnesses.

There is absolutely nothing in my travels short of death, that can’t be fixed with a little kindness, firmness & patience.

The airline doesn’t want a scene, you don’t want a scene, and together with cooler heads both of you can come to an arrangement.

Crap, had I been on that plane, I’d have given him my seat, called him what he was; a spoiled dickless, petulant child, then told him to sit down and shut the hell up for the duration of the flight. 

At which point I’d have gathered my belongings, smiled at the flight attendants and asked, “OK, what do we need to do now?

In all likelihood the Flight crew would have seen to it, that I got where I was going smoothly and perhaps in a bit of style.

I have ZERO sympathy for this guy.  

He was all worried about not getting home in time for his patients… Well, hey moron you didn’t get home for them anyway and now you’re bitching about being in a hospital. What, You don’t like Doctors?

DUMBASS! He had choices and at every turn he appears to have made the wrong one

If I were one of his patients… I’d be severing that relationship in a heartbeat. 

I prefer Doctors with cool heads and pragmatic approaches.

Is it just me that sees the epic fail on his behalf?

But he does serve as a cautionary tale to the rest of the rabble clogging our airports…

Fuck around and you get your ass kicked.

Maybe we need a little more ass kicking and a little less “Oh that poor snowflake

I could be wrong…



So more has come out. United originally asked for volunteers, then when no-one could be inconvenienced, they went to a lottery. This guy LOST the lottery. Hey, that’s the breaks. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. Get over it.

Then things went off the rails. This guy refused to leave the plane like an adult. Chicago PD come on board and told him to leave, he chose instead to fight with the police. BAD MOVE.

After all, doesn’t every snowflake know that the police are fascists? 

But my original thinking still stands.

Get a ticket on another airline, lodge a complaint and demand a refund from United. You paid for services that were not rendered, that’s what an adult does. Regardless,  you cooperate with the authorities, have a little grace and work the problem.

But the other passengers, the ones saying “Oh, this is wrong,” the ones videoing the event, you know the OTHER people on the plane who were too self important, who could have simply said, “Hey, I’ll give up my seat.” And put an end to the situation. Where were you? Surely ONE of you could have taken the next flight.

Instead of paying lip service to “How wrong this was” any one of them could have stepped up and everything would have been OK. But no-one did, because everyone was too self absorbed and couldn’t be bothered to look at their schedule to see if they had some flexibility.

Apparently, because no-one knows how things work, no-one thought to ask if United could help them with their rental cars, or rescheduling the flight or simply asked “Since I’m accommodating your needs, can you help accommodate mine?” Hell, I’d have simply asked for a travel voucher on another future flight to a vacation destination, say Hawaii?

This is a symptom of the overarching problem with everyone thinking the world revolves around them. 

Helpful Hint: IT DOESN’T

We live in a society of rules. Some of those rules are enforced by rule of law, others however, are simply good manners. Both types of rules help insure that we live in a nice place where we are not angry all the time and always fighting to get our cut. 

The problem is, too many people think they’re special, entitled, and better than everyone else.

United, screwed up, given. This dumbass compounded the problem by deciding to be an asshole. Chicago PD was probably over zealous. 

But this tracks back to an easily predictable outcome when no-one can think beyond themselves or their own selfish needs.

He still got exactly what he deserved.

Said Goodbye to a faithful friend today

Had to put Sundance down today.

14 years, through thick and thin, a great pal, who loved me unconditionally. 

He never failed to bolster my mood, no matter how bad. He always had my back and was a clown (in a good way, not the icky painted face way.) 

The photo is, “But Dad, you weren’t using the TemperPedic

My stoner, surfer boy died in my arms, in much the same way our relationship started, so many years ago. His back against my chest, one arm protectively over him with his head on my other arm. 

This last year has been hard on all of my family. But the last few months took their toll on Sunny. As an older dog that didn’t know he was older he still gave me THE LOOK when I found and destroyed his mushroom stash in the yard. 

Yes, He really was a stoner dog and his drug of choice was ‘shrooms. He’d eat them, get stoned, throw-up, then eat some more. Spent a bloody fortune in vet bills trying to figure out what the hell was wrong with him. Finally by shear luck he tossed his cookies in the vet’s office one day, and the vet pointed to the bits of mushrooms and said, “Here’s your problem.”

Thus began years of my scouring the yard, Spring, Summer, and Autum for the inevitable stash. And my having to endure Sunny’s dejected look when I found it. He’d actually ignore me for a day or two after I uprooted his most recent “Happy Stash”. 

It became a game between us and I knew that he’d always manage to be one mushroom ahead of me.

When Sunny was young, he’d lead visitors to the “Treat Cabinet”, he was always a lovable mooch conning guests to sneak him nibbles from the table. He wasn’t obnoxious about it, he’d just give you the “Poor Abused look”. He loved Popcorn and carrots. 

As he approached middle age one of his hips would bug him in the Winter. Rather than drugs, we’d use a heating pad. He knew which cabinet his heating pad was in, and on those days he felt he needed it, he’d sit with his nose on the cabinet door until I got the message. 

As I moved deeper into middle age, we’d share the heating pad when my shoulder would start bugging me. Sunny eventually decided that we needed two heating pads because my shoulder and his hip would often act up on the same days. He actually made his desire known by pulling the heating pad off me, to the floor, and then laying bad hip down on it.

He was smart, sometimes too smart for his own good. He was good natured and generally funny. I think I only saw him really pissed off one time. Some Jack Russell Terrier said something to Sunny at a park, and Sunny went ballistic. Had it not been for a firm grip on his leash, I think we’d have been eating Jack Russell Terrier soup.

The last 4 months, though, his hips had been bothering him a lot. He started piddling a bit sometimes when he got up. He’d had several bouts with a bladder infection as well. I attribute these problems perhaps to his drug abuse and also to the dramatic steps I took to have him cured of heart worms, when he was about 6. 

I always knew that the treatment for heart worms was going to shorten his life. I’m simply glad that he got to be 14 or 15 years old without too many problems.

After repeated treatment for bladder infections he got better. His hips on the other hand, kept getting worse. He was on painkillers more often but still had his spirit, goofiness, and joy in life. As his hips got worse, you could see him grimace when he got up more frequently, and the sudden pain would cause him to “leak” a bit. 

Cleaning up occasional leakage on the floor wasn’t a big deal. When I rebuilt the house after the fire, durable faux hardwood and tile floors replaced the carpeting of the former house. As the months went on, the leakage became more of a problem, but we adapted, after all, you do your best to make sure that your friends have a good life.

Last week Sunny was noticeably weaker. This week when I came home, he couldn’t get up. 

Eventually today, he rallied getting up to follow me around the house. Shortly thereafter he made himself comfortable on his cushion in the living room. With more of a crash landing than his usual graceful plop.

I’d noticed he was getting thinner over time, but the difference between last week and this was startling. His muscle mass was reducing at an alarming rate. Blood testing done last week confirmed that his kidneys were shutting down. The decline was rapid and brutal.

My surfer-stoner pup’s usual happy buzz was very harshed. 

It was time to let him go in as dignified as way as possible.

3 hours later, I’m lying on the floor of the vet’s office holding him, the way I’d done when he first came to live with me as an abused rescue. He was calm, laying there head on my arm. 15 minutes later, he stopped breathing, & I was crying in spite of knowing I’d done the right thing.

I pray that he’s playing in the Elysian fields with Butch and Etta who’d gone before him.

If I’m very lucky, one day, I’ll join them there, in a rough and tumble wrestling match like we used to have when we were all young.

Sunny my friend, eat all the mushrooms you want to. They can’t hurt you now.

I love you.  I’ll miss you terribly.

So this is funny, in a really sad way.

I talk to people all day long.  I help them figure out what’s wrong with their machines and there’s the added factor that these machines are part of life monitoring. 

Sometimes we replace parts, and we ask for the broken parts to be sent back so that they can be analyzed.  To facilitate this, we send all the packaging necessary for the client to send the broken bits back. Yes, we pay the shipping to their homes, and then pay to have the units shipped back to us. 

That’s the system anyway.

Sometimes the return label gets lost, or misplaced. 

This leads to the client calling us to request a replacement label.

Our usual procedure is to email the replacement label to the client and have them print it locally on their printer. This is fast efficient and cheap.

Which leads me to the funny, sad part of it.

I actually spoke with someone today who’d lost or never gotten their label.

I said, “No problem, I’ll email it to you and you can print it out.”

They said, “No, I shouldn’t have to waste my paper printing out your label. You must mail it to me.”

My brain rebooted.

I’d looked at the order, we’d sent this person almost 2K worth of equipment (approximately half of it un-necessary but this person had raised a stink and got their way.)  FOR FREE. They were sitting right at the end of their warranty and were clearly milking another year of stuff out of us.

I said, “Excuse me?”

They reiterated, “I shouldn’t have to waste my paper or toner, on your crappy product.”

Sensing this was a trap. I said, “Sure thing.” Then printed the label, folded it placed it in an envelope and put it in the outgoing mail. 

What I wanted to say to this person was, ” If you’re not happy with the product, why the hell do you keep having us replace old stuff with new stuff?” I wanted to call this person out on their being an ass. 

To do that would have demonstrated that I can also be an ass. So I’m glad I restrained myself. I’m trying to be a better version of myself.


Capable of unbelievable kindness, creativity, compassion, and accomplishments that rival some of the legends of gods.

But there is an element of humanity, a subspecies if you will, that make me wonder if eugenics based breeding should be mandatory.

Honestly, If it had been up to me I’d have terminated this person’s account. Billed them retail for all the equipment, then made sure that they were never able to purchase anything from us again. None of these actions would have been harmful. The person would have survived just fine they simply wouldn’t have had convienience anymore.

Alas, such things are not up to me. Perhaps that’s for the best. Had I done this, it wouldn’t have demonstrated much compassion on my part.

I did send the return label, postage due,  by 5 cents. That’s the approximate cost of the paper this person saved.

Someone in the mail dept caught the postal discrepancy. Probably for the best too, I’m sure that the person would have demanded another label be mailed.

But I tried!

Ahh, accomplished goals… some unintentional.

Sleeping late

Slept a little late this morning.  That was nice and needed!

Got up, had coffee, read a little, then started cleaning the apartment. I’d worked my way to the bathroom, where in preparation for my shower I stripped then decided that I’d clean the bathroom before I showered. While I was busy scrubbing the toilet, sink and tub, maintenance apparently knocked.

Nude Yoga For Men On the Rise 733x440I didn’t hear them, so thinking I was still alone I walk out of the bathroom into the shocked and clearly embarrassed maintenance guys. Both young, the taller one stammered and turned beet red. The shorter one looked away, obviously very uncomfortable. My hands were full of cleaning supplies and a wet sponge.

Prld xlgThe taller one was looking at me trying very hard to figure out what to do

I remembered something I’d read once “What has been seen can’t be unseen.” After a brief pause, I just kept walking toward the kitchen to put the supplies away. I rinsed my hands then walked back to the bedroom and pulled a pair of sweats on.

Both the of the guys relaxed visibly and I smiled, “How can I help you?

Um, we just needed some building samples, there’s going to be some renovations and we needed to get materials so we can match the original construction.”

Cleaning apartmentThe tall one was shuffling uncomfortably.

I was thinking, “These poor men, never had to change clothes with other boys or men in school.”

Oh well don’t let me hold you up, I’m going to finish wiping down the bright work. Let me know when you’re done.

I went back to the bathroom after grabbing a microfiber cloth from the linen closet and polished the faucets. After a few minutes, I head them saying goodby and locking the door behind them.

Then I took a shower


Apartment cleaned, dirty clothes in the bag, and down the stair to load up the car. Then I get the 3 hour drive to the mountains. Ugh, what a cluster f*&K the drive has become. The I-15 is a wide ribbon of concrete that is always bumper to bumper, with traffic that doesn’t have any reason to be bumper to bumper. People just refuse to drive according the rules. You know, little things like signaling, slower traffic to the right… The rules that are supposed to make the freeways MOVE freely, which is why they’re called FREEWAYS.

Anyway, made it to the mountain.

Solar lightingFixed the solar lights that had been damaged by the weather and the other half driving over them. Down to the last of those units, which means it’s time to lay in another supply.  While I was at it, I did some of the yard work, mostly pruning and cleaning up the perennial beds. There’s a lot of work that I’ll need to do, but it doesn’t all have to be done in the next 24 hours.

Took the dog for a walk and now he’s happily sleeping on his cushion.

It Never Fails…

I’d been asleep for an hour last night. That in itself is a feat, with all the people wandering around on a Friday night, (weekends sleeping here is a tough thing) when I woke to the sound of something… my head registered it as a car coughing a few times while trying to start, then there were two loud BOOMS
I knew that sound. That was the sound of a gun. 

My guess is that it was something over a .40 caliber but couldn’t be more specific. It was close, too close. I rolled out of bed onto the floor and waited to see if there were more to come.

In the 5 to 10 seconds of silence that followed I wondered what the hell was going on. A minute later when I heard doors slamming all around the apartment complex I cautiously got up from the floor. I padded quietly to the nearest window and peered out. All the while thinking I was acting like an old person.

I could hear other occupants of the complex shouting and talking outside.

After a few minutes the sirens started and familiar blue & red lights were playing across the walls of my apartment. More people were joining the growing babble in the parking lot and on the sidewalks downstairs.

I decided to stay out of it, and went back to bed. Lying in bed with the strobing lights adding to the already too bright “Security Lights” shining on the walls through the window blinds, I realized I wasn’t going to get back to sleep anytime soon.

Car alarms started going off and I was out of bed again. 

The car alarms probably went off because someone leaned against or bumped some of the cars in the parking lot. 

Ok, time to go to the head. In the bathroom next door, the guy who lives there is taking a leak and talking on the phone. 

I wonder if he knows that I can hear every word he says in his bathroom? I can tell you his bathroom is the scene of an enviable amount of sex or a less enviable amount of masturbation, complete with some rather filthy dialog.

Anyhow, he’s on the phone talking to someone about the shooting and says, “There are cops everywhere, yeah I’ll be right over.” He didn’t, as far as I can tell come home last night. I’m guessing he probably took the opportunity to sully someone else’s bathroom.

I know I’m not going to get to sleep until all this dies down. I go to the cabinet and make myself a stiff drink. It’s 10:40 PM.

By 1:00 AM folks have gotten bored with their conversations in the parking lot and are finally returning to their apartments with all the attendant door slamming. 

I have to get up in 2 hours to go to work. If I wasn’t expected to be nice and patient on the phone I could actually work on that amount of sleep.

But as I consider it and weigh that I’m supposed to be empathetic to a substantial number of pathetic, perpetual, “victims”, I decide I’m not going to go in to work. 

Don’t get me wrong, I do talk to some really nice people, the problem is that they are in the minority and a larger number of people I talk to are the self appointed “Victim” class.

Yeah, they have a disease. Yeah, it sucks, but I personally know many people with the same disease and they’re not “Victims” they deal with it and get on with their lives. 

They’re good folks and their disease, like their sexuality or color of their skin simply IS. Their examples are in part why I thought working for this company would work for me. It never occurred to me that there might be a large percentage of the “Victim, Poor Me, Give me whatever I want” group. 

My bad, I know human nature better than that. Somehow I thought that a life threatening illness would galvanize them to be better people. Ah well, lesson learned. It has made me appreciate the people I know who are better people more.

I’ll read about the gunshots in the morning. Whoever did whatever, is of no consequence to me. But I am not going in to work. I just can’t muster even a simulation of empathy for the constant barrage of whiny people. 

As I lay there in the prison-like, lighting seeping through the window shades. I consider that my lease is coming to an end in June. If I don’t find another job by then I’m thinking I’ll at least find a new apartment. One hopefully that doesn’t have Shoji screen thin walls.

Finally I sleep…