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Monthly Archives: July 2015

Good Riddance, if it sticks

The extra-hot weather in my neck of the hood has tempers a bit more frayed than usual. The smell of desperation in the air sets my teeth on edge and makes me want to scream.

The Kid still has not acquired a job. He says he’s looking. I take whatever he says with a whole salt lick because he prefers to lie by omission rather than just tell the truth and seek help with his resume and/or interview skills.

But this post isn’t about my errant offspring, it’s about my nearest neighbor. She’s a young woman, not yet thirty, and I don’t know her whole story, but here’s what I’ve been told –

She has several children but it not married. None of the children live with her because of problems in the past. I don’t know where the children live. I saw four between the ages of 8 and 15 the other day who all looked enough alike to be siblings sitting on her porch. They came over to pet Sabu so I got a good look at them.

She lives in the single-wide trailer Lois (remember her? the woman with all the long-haired chihuahuas? Did I tell that story here?) was kicked out of. Her father and step-mom, who live in the park, worked a miracle to get that hell hole cleaned up for human habitation and I hear he pulled all kinds of strings to get her into the park and out of “a bad situation” of some sort. I try not to judge and gave her the benefit of the doubt when she moved in.

She works as a bartender at a local watering hole which means she keeps late hours, often coming home at 0100. In the beginning she would pull up onto her patch of gravel, turn off her car, slam the door and go inside. It woke me up for the first week or so but became a Regular Thing and I got accustomed enough that it didn’t wake me any more.

She likes to play very loud music, but only after 10:00 PM. Yeah. That didn’t sit very well with me. My trailer is a good 20 feet away from hers but she likes to play the music loud enough that the bass makes the whole trailer shake like it’s morphing into a nightclub. I’m a sound sleeper, but this is just a bit too much. If it were good music it might be bearable, but it’s all rap and screaming and awful.

After a couple of weeks she started bringing men home with her. For a week or so it was the same guy, then she started to change it up regularly. Some of them would be leaving in the early morning hours as I was walking Sabu before heading off to work. None of them looked anything like respectable. Most of them looked like they were seriously hung over.

In the last 4 months or so she has been outside on her porch screaming into her phone and/or screaming at her current Flavor of the Week. She’s not even trying to be polite or considerate of others. One evening I heard male and female voices raised in anger and poked my head out to see what was up, only to find her father telling her that he won’t allow “that guy” into the park, that he’s a tweaker* and she’s out of line and will get herself kicked out. Loud, angry denials from her (but I’ve seen the dude – he’s a tweaker without a doubt) with lots of curse words and “I’ll do whatever I want – it’s my life!”

Said tweaker later stole a bike from another resident of the park. Said resident is of the gun toting, shoot, shovel, shut up variety and really the absolute worst person to steal from because he will find you, he will find his goods and he will make sure your ass is in jail for the maximum allowed sentence. He will not give up, and he didn’t. The tweaker was warned that he was being hunted and he returned the bike in the dead of night. I don’t know how that story ended but Steve is not in jail for battery and the tweaker has not been seen, by me at least, in the park since.

So. Last Friday I got off work at noon and went home for a nice, relaxing afternoon sipping sweet tea on the patio while enjoying Brother Frankenstein by Michael Bunker** There were a number of people chatting on the porch next door. After a bit, the girl and three men walk between our trailers and towards the back of the park where they turn a corner and leave my sight. Five or ten minutes later they come back. Then she leads another group around the corner and they all come back a few minutes later. A minivan pulls up and disgorges several people, its motor idling loudly for the next 30 minutes. She takes another group of people around the corner. They come back, etc. etc. etc. This goes on for about three hours, cars and people coming and going. Uh-huh.

The loud conversations outside last well into the dark hours and once again I’m awoken at 0230 by shouting outside. The party continued while I fumed and did not sleep. I’m not an idiot, however, and remained inside.

More of the same on Saturday, but this time the park manager observed the tweaker parade. She asked me some questions the other day and I told her what I knew. It was not the first complaint but it was the straw that broke the camel’s back and she served the eviction notice on Tuesday. A scream was heard from inside the single-wide trailer and all has been quiet since.

This whole post may seem a bit harsh and critical, like I’m not sympathetic to the plight of young women who make poor choices, and maybe it is. I just think that if someone gives you a huge hand up and a chance to better your life it’s best to be grateful, not shit all over your improved circumstances. If you want to get away from drugs and/or bad people and you move to do so, don’t invite them back in. Take the advice of more experienced people who only want to help you. Don’t alienate your neighbors with rude behavior and excessive noise. Your life won’t improve until you make the decision to change yourself.

We shall see if it sticks and she’s out within 30 days or if she’s able to wrangle a new deal. Stay tuned…

* A tweaker is someone who uses crystal meth on a regular basis. They have a very distinctive look, what I call Meth Face, and distinctive mannerisms. They are a plague on this community and a blight on humanity. I could go on and on about my views of tweakers but this isn’t the time.

** Seriously, you need to read this guy! He’s the “father” of Amish Sci-Fi, which really is a thing and is marvelous! Also check out the Wool series by Hugh Howey if you enjoy dystopian fiction with no zombies or other unexplainable crap thrown in for cheap thrills.

 
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Posted by on July 30, 2015 in Blather, Crazy, Plea for sanity, Rants

 

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Oh, my aching back!

Seems it’s taking me a bit longer to get back into the Blogging Swing than I thought it would. Or maybe I’m just enjoying doing stuff in The Real World more than usual. It’s nice. Except for the sponge growing out of my couch, life is good.

I may have lost my mind, tho. You see, my back is sore today because I spent some hypnotically vague amount of time folding my shirts last night. Sounds insane, right? But it’s all connected, as you will see.

I’ve been very unhappy about the state of Towanda’s insides for awhile now. Most especially since The Kid moved in with me. There’s just too much clutter, too much Stuff, it’s total chaos and I have reached the end of my rope. I tossed a bunch of stuff but it still wasn’t enough. I feel like my skin’s on too tight but didn’t know quite why.

A few blogs I read have been touting this book

KonMari CoverI’ve never been one to “join” any sort of organizational method with any amount of ambition, but I bought the book for my Kindle and started reading. KonMari (as she likes to be called) has developed a system whereby her clients discard and then organize their possessions. “When your house is in order, wonderful things start to happen,” is my paraphrase of her main tenet, and anyone who knows me understands that I seriously need some forward motion right now.

Step one is to sort all clothing. ALL clothing. As in, gather every stitch of clothing in your entire house, including accessories, shoes and bags, and pile them in the middle of the floor. Then sort according to her method which amounts to, “if I were to see this in a shop today, would I buy it?” If the answer is “no,” out it goes. No second chances, no take-backs, no hesitation.

I’d already done a clothing purge a couple of months ago, putting all the Winter stuff into bins under the bed but I did it again with the warm weather clothes in the wardrobe. A surprising amount of things went out in a donation bag. I even purged some shoes! And I love my shoes…

KonMari recommends using shoe boxes inside drawers to organize clothing, hanging those things “that are happier to be hung up.” Having no drawers creates a bit of a dilemma, but I am Crafty and went out and bought some old wood drawers, painted them and added shelves inside. They stack inside the wardrobe and boxes sit on their shelves. Boxes that are now full of perfectly folded shirts and underthings. It.Is.A.Marvel. I kid you not.

However, this has led to a grim dissatisfaction with the state of the rest of my wardrobe. I may have lost my mind. I’m sitting at work and all I can think about are the bins of clothes under the bed and the state of the rest of the wardrobe. How many more pairs of shoes can I donate before I start to feel like I have “the perfect number?”

Where does this end? Should I keep track of how many bags (or pounds?) of crap I toss out the door?

The next catagory to de-clutter and organize is Books, followed by Papers (“just throw all of them away” is KonMari’s advice) komono (misc. stuff) and finally things that have sentimental value.

Books will be easy – now that I have a Kindle I don’t buy them any more and those that I have can be cheaply purchased on Kindle so long as I bought them on Amazon. There are a few that I will keep, but the vast majority will go. Papers will be even easier – it’s all crap and I’m eager to get it out of my space. Komono will be the longest process as I have a lot of things that would fall into this category.

Sigh. I really have lost my mind…

 
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Posted by on July 24, 2015 in Blather, Happy, KonMari, RV Living

 

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“Doesn’t play well with others”

It might as well be tattooed onto my forehead.

In an effort to meet people my age who might have the same interests, I joined a Facebook group. I lurked for awhile to get a feel for the group and it seemed fine. The people are of both sexes and the only requirements are that they live in Oregon and be over 40. Sounds good, right?

And it was until a woman posted that her divorce was final that day, and while she left with her children because of his substance abuse, she still felt sad about the end of her marriage. She left when she realized that she had “stopped living” and his constant demands for money (she worked, he, of course, did not) meant that her kids were going hungry.

I was in the middle of composing a, “Way to go! Congratulations! You did the right thing for you and your children,” response when someone else (a woman, surprisingly) jumped in with a caustic paragraph condemning the newly-liberated woman for leaving her man when he was at his lowest. “You wouldn’t leave if he had cancer, would you? Alcoholism is the same thing. You’re a horrible person who will burn in hell.” or words to that effect.

Red flag in front of a bull! To compare substance abuse to cancer is not only ignorant, but cruel to a person who is still raw from being a victim of it at the hands of the man she meant to spend the rest of her life with.

I fired off an “I call bullshit on your comparison and here’s why…” reply and sat back to see what would happen. Several others joined in to tell Sarah Sunshine (yes, that’s her name) she was wrong to abuse another member of the group and that she needed to back off. She kept on, berating everyone who disagreed with her in rapidly escalating language. And then she started throwing around the c-word. Yep. She called three women posting to the thread cunts and said that she would rather shoot up a speed ball and follow it with a shot of vodka than be in a relationship with any of us narrow-minded, judgmental cunts.

That’s when the moderator of the group deleted the post.

Okay, fine. It did get out of control and name calling is the lowest form of debate. But then he posted (twice) telling everyone that he wouldn’t tolerate that kind of behavior and blah, blah, blah. Okay, I get it, but he was rather condescending, and to post twice? Really? He posted again this morning saying that he had some new moderators and there would be a crackdown on “inappropriate content.” Several people started asking in the comments what exactly that meant (as if he hadn’t already outlined his New Rules in the previous posts.) It got silly very quickly and I commented that I would never post anything I wouldn’t say to anyone’s face and couldn’t we all just act like adults?

My comment was deleted about ten minutes later. No warning, no questions asked, just gone. The new moderator posted an apology to another member for deleting his comment before reading it thoroughly. What? Someone else chimed in, asking WTF was going on with the comment deleting and I asked why my comment had been deleted as it was a harmless eye-roll.

I was told, with a shout out for all to see, that I was welcome to leave if I didn’t like my comments being deleted for no reason.

And so I left the group. This always happens. I’m also a thread killer – if I comment on something, very soon everyone quits posting. I dunno. I don’t think I’m especially combative online – I really don’t type anything I wouldn’t say to your face and I don’t mean to piss people off or whatever it is I do, but there ya go.

What say you? Did I do the right thing? Am I just being paranoid and/or crazy?

 

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Domestic violence DE-CODED: 5 lies that perpetrators tell

Domestic violence DE-CODED: 5 lies that perpetrators tell

Number 4 is the one used against me the most, but I experienced all of these lies. Over and over again.

Avalanche of the soul

Discover what perpetrators of domestic violence or abuse really mean in this breakdown of the TOP FIVE lies they tell.

1. The lie: “I love you”

The truth: I love what you do for me. I love how powerful I feel when I hurt you. I love that I never have to accept responsibility for my horrific behaviour. I love that despite this, you believe I love you. I feel only contempt for you, but saying ‘I love you’ enables me to maintain control over you.

2. The lie: “I only hurt you because I drink too much / had a terrible childhood / have trust issues”

The truth: I deliberately get tanked up on drink / drugs before I abuse you, because it is a great excuse. In fact, there is no end to the excuses I’ll invent because shifting the blame for my abusive behaviour is…

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Posted by on July 6, 2015 in Uncategorized

 
 
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