Archive for April, 2013

NBA Player Says He’s Gay

My ears have been getting assaulted frequently since yesterday by what they (various media outlets) apparently construe as HUGE BREAKING NEWS VERY IMPORTANT TO MY LIFE. Some NBA player has declared his gayness to the world.

So, why would this be important to me? Why do I need to hear about it every half hour when I’m driving or listening to the radio while I wash dishes? Is it a danger to me? Is it financially important to me? Does it have some sort of medical interest to me; i.e., are the genes for men having basketball skills inextrictably linked to homosexualism? No? Is he using the media as a dating aid, in that he wasn’t getting hit on enough from like-minded men? Would the media perform the same service for a world-famous interior decorator that would like the world to know that he’s really a closet heterosexual?

How do I put this politely to the media? I. Don’t. Care. I don’t give a shit about the NBA, any of the players, or their sexual orientation. I don’t care about ANYBODY’s sexual orientation except mine. I don’t know why it’s such a big deal to the media.

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I Don’t Bounce Back Worth a DAMN Anymore!

Zombie meThe dog decided to bark at an armadillo attempting to dig under the fence all night long. I got about three hours’ sleep, my eyelids are dragging the ground, my eyeballs are all red, and I can just feel new gray hairs and wrinkles popping out. Why don’t I sleep now, while the damn dog is sleeping? I can’t sleep during the day, that’s why.

I think I’ll go outside and kick the dog while he’s sleeping, then come back inside. Then, he’ll sit there going “hunh”, and trying to decide whether it’s just a dream. Maybe he’ll sit there for awhile and worry about going back to sleep because *maybe* somebody with glowing red eyeballs will come kick him again. Maybe I’ll play really loud music for him.

*sigh* No, I won’t. I love da Puppy. But I’ll think about it. And I might play loud music, too. Or maybe I’ll just periodically go outside and shoot. Just when he’s about to drop off, or has just dropped off into a deep sleep, “BLAM!” Maybe by tonight his hyperactive ass will be ready for some sleep.

Daughter has just come off another 15-hour work shift with no pee break, no water break, no sitting down break, no food break, constant running around with car-hit dogs coming in overnight. She got about three hours of sleep after her last 15-hour shift, then back on for another one.

The bottom picture is what SHE looks like getting off work. The top picture is what I would look like this morning if I were looking good. But nooooo. My hair is shorter, grayer, and my eye bags are worse. Amazing what 20 years can do, hunh? Jenny after 15-hour shift

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What Would I Do?

I was asked recently what would I do if I were in a similar situation regarding a job that had radically changed from what the person was originally hired for.

Well, that’s easy. I’d give the new situation a chance, if it were feasible from both an economic and family standpoint and, if it isn’t, I’d leave.

People have a tendency, and I’m no different, to stick with what is comfortable. As a situation grows more uncomfortable over time, we adjust our expectations. It is only when the discomfort is truly painful do we make that leap into the unfamiliar.

When we leap into the unfamiliar, we are often as uncomfortable with the new work situation and new people as we are with a pair of new shoes or new jeans. The old, worn ones are much more comfortable. Sometimes we slip back into the comfort of the old without making the effort to break in or get used to the new to where they, too, are comfortable.

Have you ever noticed that it is the same with a marriage? People grow apart over time and it is only when the situation is more painful than staying does the situation resolve. The fear of the unknown is a powerful force in people’s lives.

I know that is waaaaay too simplistic for the situations that most people face. I’ve found that I really only have to think about four factors in an employment situation:

Will this job fulfill my financial needs? If it pays less than my expenses, it is time for me to leave (which is what eventually happened with my last job).

Will this job fulfill my family needs? (I stayed with my last job for such a long time because of the generous time off policy because of family needs.)

Will this job help or interfere with my needs for self growth and mental stimulation? (Honestly, I should have left my last job five years ago.)

Do the people that are my coworkers share my values? Sometimes the pay may be good, the hours and schedule are great, the learning opportunities are fine, but you’re working with complete assholes. Do an attitude check and, if it isn’t YOU, you’re not going to be happy. I don’t believe in the liberal, politically correct bullshit espoused in most places.

I’ve been hired in the past and, when I went to work, found that the position had been completely misrepresented as to the hours, the compensation, or both. If it doesn’t fit, I leave. I have found that when my gut and my head are in conflict, my gut feeling is more correct. If my gut says go, I should go.

There are unscrupulous employers that try to make employees bend over backwards and work ridiculous hours because they think that they can. Well, I seem to recall that slavery is illegal. If you do not want to work those hours, that schedule, or those wages, you do not have to. You just have to commit the time and energy to finding something that you CAN work for compensation that you can live, and even thrive, on.

I know that times are hard. You might need to put some extra time and training in, but there are always options. I’m a big proponent of self employment but there aren’t many benefits, and the boss is always a bitch.

UPDATE: SwampMan said it was *VERY* important to include that I do not actually do any of those things. He said that it was far more likely that once I was aware of the deception, I would pitch a HUGE fit along with nearby equipment, shriek very ugly words, and probably break the glass in the door on the way out.

Now, now. I have left many jobs under good circumstances. As long as somebody isn’t a low down deceiving deceiver, I’m as calm and mellow as any ol’ well-fed gator basking in the sun on a warm summer day.

Plus, what I do and what is the right thing to do can be two very different things. I think that tossing the annoying drunken people who run up and down outside hotel rooms, making a lot of noise and banging on doors in the wee hours of the morning waking up sleeping travelers and children just to be funny, off the third floor balcony of said hotel is perfectly reasonable. SwampMan thought it was a litle extreme and actually held me back from doing so, shouting out a warning to the dipshits that he wasn’t going to be able to hold me for long and that they better run like hell. I take these little differences in personality into account with my advice.

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My Sheep Are All Comfy Now

I used to get a little stressed because the sheep shearer would call me late the night before he arrived, and I would have *very* little time to get the sheep barn prepared, the sheep caught and separated, the electrical cords found and detangled, and work called because I wouldn’t be there. The shearer makes a multi-state tour from the midwest, going through the deep south (except for Texas), and hitting up, among the other states, Louisiana, Mississippi, Florida, and Georgia, states that most people do not associate with a significant number of sheep. Since none of us have a large enough amount of sheep to keep him busy for very long, he may only be in a particular county for a half day. You better be ready. Or shear ’em yourself.

It is a good thing that I’m not working now, because I got the call that he would be in the area the day of shearing, @ 6:30 a.m. I would not have gotten the call had I been working, and the poor sheep would have had to wait until school was out in June before I had the time to shear them myself. I didn’t get to the phone in time and frantically called back, but he’d already called the next person on the list and was starting there. I’d be next. That could mean he’d be there at noon or 10 p.m. because when the shearer shows up, everybody knows that he’s there for just a matter of hours, and sheep owners that are not on the calling list have a tendency to appear out of the woodwork through word of mouth and haul their sheep in to whatever farm he’s at, particularly if they only have a few. Six here, two there, another five, suddenly seven more, and “Wait! I’m bringing the llamas!” can add up over the course of a few hours and suddenly instead of 30 he’s shearing 120.

One of my friends that has @ 40 sheep is going to be REALLY upset. She and her husband were not home yesterday. D’OH! They, like me, used to shear all their own sheep but have gotten spoiled by the shearer coming through. Their place is on the St. Mary’s river and used to be the last stop before he goes through Georgia. Today, my place was.

It is a weekend (well, just an overnight this time) with the grandkids, so SwampMan went and got them. The boys came out to the barn to observe for a little while under strict orders not to be pests.

Dylan couldn’t contain himself for long. “MEEMAW!” he said loudly. “He’s touching that sheep’s PENIS!” Obviously I was supposed to DO SOMETHING about this inappropriate sheep fondling.

“He’s just folding it over so that he won’t accidentally cut it off with the clippers”, I explained.

“CUT IT OFF?” Dylan was horrified at the prospect.

“Yeah, those clippers are REALLY strong. Your Papa was shearing sheep before and he accidentally cut a ram’s ear off. After he cut another ram’s penis off, I wouldn’t let him shear sheep anymore and I started shearing.”

“MEEMAW! He’s touching the sheep’s BALLS now!” *sigh* I explained that the ram would be much more comfortable with the wool off his balls.

“MeeMaw! He’s shaving the butthole! LOOK!” I was really hoping that the shearer couldn’t hear these exchanges over the clatter of the clippers.

When the ol’ senior ram was finished and released, I stepped forward to gather the wool, discarding the belly wool and manure tags from around the back end. “NO, MEEMAW! DON’T TOUCH IT!” screamed Dylan.

“What?” I looked up, startled.

“MeeMaw, don’t touch it!” begged Dylan. “There’s ball and butthole hair in there. It gots germs on it! You’ll get germs on your hands!”

I looked at Dylan. This was going to be a long afternoon. “Did Papa get you any food on the way home?” I asked him. I’d left Papa a cell phone message saying that he needed to go through a drive through to feed the little bottomless tummies before arriving because I didn’t know when I’d be finished and they’d be famished.

“No, MeeMaw! I’m REALLY hungry.”

“Why don’t you go in and tell Papa that you need to get a happy meal?”

“Can I watch just one more?” asked Jacob, who’d been standing there observing quietly.

“Yep.” I caught a black yearling that I’d kept from last year, but had sent her sister for slaughter. I wish I’d kept both but the feed prices were just so high. Her fleece was long and faded at the tips, a rich black to charcoal gray inside, fading to oatmeal on the outside. The wool fibers were so fine that individual little crimped fibers could barely be seen.

The boys were impressed with how small the yearling ewe was after shearing. She’d gone from a big ol’ walking overstuffed pillow to a slender little doeling after shearing. “MeeMaw, that’s so pretty!” said Jacob about her fleece. “Can I have a hat from it?”

“Sure!” I said.

“How do you make it? Is it like a coonskin cap?”

“No, it’s knitted. Out of yarn.” Blank look. “Don’t worry, I’ll show you!”

Satisfied, they ran off to Papa so that he could take them and get them food while the shearer and I, old team members by now, got on with shearing.

We finished up, then had to get his big ol’ one ton truck with the shearing rig and heavy duty Cummins diesel engine unstuck. It had slowly sunk while we were shearing.

“I didn’t know the ground was that soft!” said the shearer. “It looked okay!”

“Yeah, it does, on the surface, but we’ve had a lot of rain lately.”

“It was never a problem before!”

“We’ve never had this much rain in the dry season when you were here before!”

I went to get SwampMan to get his truck out there. He hooked up, then started spinning himself into a hole.

He got out and looked at the problem. “DAMN! I didn’t know the ground was that soft!”

“Yeah, us either!”

We had to go get some rubber mats (old conveyor belts) and put down on the ground to pull the truck out. Happily for the shearer, we were successful. He was going to help us roll up the old conveyor belts, but SwampMan assured him that that was what grandkids were for.

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From Rachel Lucas’ blog. Couldn’t say it any better.

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I Wonder If My Grandmother Felt This Way

Zoe and tablet I wonder if my grandmother ever looked in bemusement at the 2-year-old me calmly working technology that didn’t even EXIST when she was a young adult? Probably not. I don’t think things were moving at quite as fast a pace then.

I was startled awake by the sound of a phone ringing this morning. I raced for it (once I was finally awakened) but didn’t make it in time. It was the shearer from Iowa. The funny part was that I was walking out to let the sheep out to graze yesterday, and thought to myself “I better start getting the barn ready for the shearer. It is about time for him to arrive.” Then my former daughter-in-law came over to visit and take me to lunch, so that thought completely escaped my mind! Shoulda paid attention and got the barn ready.

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Senator Reid Said Government is Inherently Good

Senator Reid is lying through his teeth. Again.

HARRY REID: We have a situation where this country has been driven by the Tea Party for the last number of years. When I was in school, I studied government and I learned about the anarchists. Now, they were different than the Tea Party because they were violent. But they were anarchists because they did not believe in government in any level and they acknowledged it. The Tea Party kind of hides that.

They don’t say they’re against government, but that is what it all amounts to. They’re not doing physically destructive things to buildings and people, directly, but they are doing everything they can to throw a monkey-wrench into every form of government, whether it’s local, state or federal. That’s what it’s all about. And so, anything they can do to through a monkey-wrench in the wheels of government, they’re happy doing that. And I’m sorry to say that my friend from Oklahoma is helping them. Maybe not directly, but indirectly, and that’s wrong. Government is not inherently bad; government is inherently good. That’s why we have a Constitution and that’s what we direct the activities of this government based upon. (Senate Floor, April 23, 2013)

OHMYGAWD! The evil Tea Partiers are throwing monkey wrenches into government and it is horrible because government is inherently GOOD!

Gosh. Harry Reid really needs to give a stern talking to to the people of Syria because government is inherently GOOD. Those people of North Korea just better quit starving to death because Fat Kim is GOOD and so is his government! The Palestinian government is GOOD! Detroit government is GOOD! California government is GOOD!

Please quit throwing monkey wrenches into government, Tea Partiers. I think it would be far more effective to club this sad dumbass with the monkey wrenches. Good grief. He’d need an IQ transplant to qualify as a turnip green.

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I Did It Again. On Purpose.

A suddenly-appearing wheat/gluten allergy seems to me to be a sign of somebody that doesn’t have a strong enough will. I have a *very* strong will. I should be able to kick gluten’s ASS. I am so tired of having to always be careful of what I eat so I don’t accidentally poison myself.

So, I made a bunch of no-bake cookies today, the kind that looks like cat shit and has lots of oatmeal in it. I thought I’d kinda sneak up on gluten. And I ate some. Shrug. I didn’t feel any discomfort, so I ate a few more. There are people with full-blown celiac disease that can eat oatmeal, so I should be okay. Besides, it’s all a matter of willpower.

Those people that can tolerate oatmeal *sigh* are not me. I’m now in a chair scrunched up in pain because it feels like I’ve swallowed some caustic substance that is trying to claw its way through my intestines and abdominal wall. Oatmeal is kicking my ass.

Apparently I need to work on my willpower some more. If a politician drops over dead when he or she is in the middle of saying something particularly stupid, well, you know that might be me working on strengthening my willpower. I would happily kill to be able to eat a yeast roll, hot from the oven, slathered in butter.

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Going to Manhattan to Party?

According to Chechen Terrorist the Younger, they were not planning to go to New York to hurt anybody! They were just going to party!

Yes. I so totally relate to THAT. Because people always carry multiple illegal weapons and bombs when they are going someplace to party. Especially places with extremely strict gun controls.

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H7N9 Case in Taiwan

Read about it here.

“Oh, no big deal!” you might say. “Just another case of flu. Nothing to see. Move along here.” The man has been in the hospital since April 16 in critical condition. Suppose the critical care units in the hospital were unavailable? Remember how SARS was shutting down Canadian hospitals? I think we’re going to see that again. If memory serves me correctly, it was Taiwan/Canadian airline traffic that spread it.

It is killing about 1/5 of the people that are infected if the Chinese numbers are correct.

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