Thursday, December 16, 2010

Taking Time to Be Patient and Kind

Yesterday morning I was pondering how much better life would be if people just slowed down a bit to be more patient and kind.
Then in the afternoon I pulled into a gas station for fuel.  Normally I would drive on through to the second pump, so it would be easy for someone to use the first pump, but as I got closer I could see that the second pump was out of order, so I stopped at the first one.

An older woman was behind my pick-up in a little car. She started laying on the horn trying to get me to pull forward.  As I was getting out she tried to cut around me. I gestured for her to open her window, so she rolled it down on my side.  Before I could even explain she remarked, "Well, you are not very bright, are you?" I just smiled and said, "The other pump is out of order." She looked crestfallen. Realizing that it was her that was none too bright, not me, just took the wind out of her sails. No point making her feel any worse so I just said, "You couldn't see it from where you were."

She looked embarrassed and went on about her business.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Pulling My Three Bank Accounts Out of Chase Bank

Today I got a notice from my bank I've long been expecting.  I had two free checking accounts at Wamu and a savings account that got bought out when Wamu folded.  Chase assured me nothing would change and my accounts would be free.  But every time I go in there they hammer me to set up a direct deposit.  Even if I wanted to I couldn't.  If I get ten checks a month they come from ten different places.  That is the nature of the beast when you do freelance work for a living. So I wasn't really surprised when I got a booklet from the bank today explaining how they are going to start charging a monthly service charge of $10 (per account).  There are a few ways to get around it, all which demand $500 per month lump sum of a monthly deposit, or a large minimum daily balance, or some other things that don't apply to me.  I have until Feb. to decide before I start getting dinged with fees. 

The reason I left Bank of America in the first place is that I was sick of paying $120 a year in monthly account fees.

Right now I'm leaning towards Wells Fargo bank. But they also charge a $5. monthly fee.  It's half of Chase so I may go in that direction, and their daily minimum if I want the fee waived is half what Chase requires.

As I was researching banks, I came across something called 'move your money'.  That lead to the video embedded here.  It truly is scary to see how big banks have us in their clutches.  I wonder if there is a small community bank I can trust in the Anaheim area. I've never had a lot of trust in big banks anyway, but I have even less now.  I'm about to start sticking my money under the mattress and hope the building never catches on fire.

One thing is for certain, there is no way I'm staying with Chase.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving Wrap Up Rant

It seems like Thanksgiving has been going on for ten days. Will it never end? At least I begged off spending the day with relatives. But it kind of backfired because I was too depressed to do anything I had planned. I just stayed home, felt disgusted at the news reporting that even Black Friday wasn't soon enough, and that stores were staying open on Thanksgiving too. Now I've worked retail, and those poor drones need a holiday just like the rest of you, but now they are stuck in the stores Thursday too. Is no one else disgusted by this? Like they can't drain our wallets of money fast enough.

I'm protesting Black Friday. Instead I'm going to sponsor a woman in Africa through the Women For Women organization. They teach job skills to women in war torn areas so they can better support their families.  I used to sponser someone but then the economy took a dump and I had to back off.  But now I want to get back to contributing to the welfare of others, even if it's a personal sacrifice to do so. There's more to life than buying a new sofa.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Random Thoughts About My Life

The crickets are partying tonight. One confused fellow was chirping about 5 PM. We are having a mini heat wave driven by the Santa Ana winds. After the rain last weekend, the heat wave is just rather confusing. I had to come back inside and change into a halter top.

The main noticible thing today is not what is there, but what is not there. Namely, all the political ads are gone from the TV, Facebook, radio, and other media.  I had about worn out my mute button.

My Dr. read me the riot act about gaining more weight. It seems the harder I try the more I gain. It makes me feel like not trying at all. What's the point? It just stresses me and everyone else out. On top of that my boyfriend's mom is losing weight so it's all she talks about. Points this and points that and on and on. I'm glad she's feeling better but I just don't want to hear it anymore. It's rather like a man who has been blind but can now see sitting in a room full of blind people and going on and on about how great vision is. My Dr. is convinced that exercise has nothing to do with weight loss; that only cutting calories will change your weight. I think he's daft. The science museum in San Francisco has an excellent display showing how fast you can lose weight if you combine diet and exercise, compared to either diet or exercise alone.

At any rate, people are bored to death about hearing how bad obesity is. I'm bored. I'd rather have a different problem, instead of this one all my life.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

GMAIL is Really Starting to Bug Me

GMAIL is really ticking me off lately. First they disable my account because of 'suspicious activity.' They won't turn it back on without a text or voice message sent to the cell phone I don't have. I tried to contact them directly but they didn't respond in 24 hours like their instructions say they will.

So I dug out my old cell phone, and couldn't remember the number. So I
tried to log in to Virgin Mobile to find out my phone number, only I can't log in without my phone number! Ugh. Twenty minutes later I finally find the number. So I ask Gmail to send the new code. In the middle of the voice message with
the new number code, my phone battery dies.

 (Bangs head on keyboard). So now I have to charge the phone to try again.

Why does Gmail assume every person on the planet has a cell phone?

I know a few months ago they tried to make is so you couldn't even start a Gmail account without a cell phone verification. They may have dropped this though because my boyfriend just started a new Gmail account and didn't have a problem.  

I just hope when I finally get the code it works.


This was the original gmail message: 'Because we detected unusual activity on your account, we've disabled it for the time being. In most cases, accounts are disabled because of a perceived violation of either the Google Terms of Service or product-specific Terms of Service'.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Just the Way I Feel Today

I hate to say it but there are so many areas of my life I've just given up on. After years and years of plugging away and not getting anywhere, it's hard to get up any sort of enthusiasm. Pep talks only go so far. After a while you don't even believe your own words. If you lose every game, eventually you don't show up at the ballpark anymore.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Libraries Make Me Happy

Today I drove the 10 extra miles round trip to go to the big library. Usually I go to one of the branches, where they rarely have everything I need. Then I have to order books from the inter-library system, wait another week, and then go back to pick them up. I dropped off 14 books and came home with 24! If this keeps up I'll need to take a shopping cart to the library. Part of the problem is I'm getting books for 2 people. My boyfriend is a voracious reader but refuses to set foot in a library. So to sooth the savage beast, I bring home books for him too. He also reads about twice as fast as I do. And he's out of work, so he has a lot of hours to read. I feel I'm saving us money by going to the library. If he bought all those books, we'd be homeless.

My choice of books leans heavily to arts and crafts and biographies of famous artists. I was thrilled to find a book on Matisse.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Let's Get Organized

caption: Silverado Car Show
I just had an organizational epiphany. I used to keep a Daily Planner, but it was so heavy and costly. And people thought I was a bible thumper. And I'm not sure why it never occurred to me before, but I can make a daily blog and set it to private to use as my daily planner. Genius! So I'm going to go do that right now.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Computer Saga or Things That Make You Want to Scream

Some time ago my best computer took a nose dive. So my boyfriend takes it to a friend to fix it. Turns out the motherboard is fried and it needs a new power source. It takes a few weeks to find that out and get the parts and all. So we keep emailing the guy trying to arrange for a pick up. He's evidentally fallen off the face of the earth and is returning neither phone calls or messages. Meanwhile I'm limping along with the loaner. So weeks pass, and then months. I won't go into detail about how not having that computer is costimg me both friendships and money. I kept trying to get my boyfriend to talk to his friend, but he didn't want to bug the guy or lose his friend. So a year passes. Still no word. Then about 8 months later, my boyfriend's computer goes belly up. And mine is out of memory. So we were really close to not having a computer at all, and since we both earn our livings on the Internet, things were not looking good.

So he emails the very same guy. And the guy responds and says, "Let's get together Sunday."

Fast forward to Sunday. My boyfriend takes his hard drive over there and is gone all day. Turns out it was dead, and the guy hooks him up with a new one. So in one afternoon he gets a computer again, and I've been waiting almost 2 years. In that time the man and his wife have bought a house and moved to another city.

So finally we discuss my computer. He says, "I told him about your computer and he said he gave it back ages ago." NOT. "He said he'd look around for it". I'm thinking this guy has moved, so who knows if he sold it, trashed it, gave it away or stuck it in storage.
I'm out the computer, the money we gave him for parts, and I'm none too happy about the whole slipshod ordeal.

Monday, June 28, 2010

A Sinister Dream


Sometimes when I oversleep I have these sinister dreams.
This morning my dream started out pleasantly, as they often do.
I was out in my backyard tending to my garden. I was in a good mood and feeling quite lovely. Then I heard someone coming through the house. A voice inside me said, “That’s not who you think it is, hide.” And I mentally argued back, “That’s ridiculous, who else could it be.”

Next thing I know this short Hispanic woman dragging a young child bursts into my back yard. I’m startled so I yell out, “Who are you? What are you doing in my yard? How did you get in?”

She says in broken English that the front door was unlocked. I say it wasn’t unlocked. I’m angry. In real life I have brick walls surrounding my yard, but in the dream there is just a redwood fence between me and the next house. Somehow she gets behind me and manages to pull some boards loose and squeeze into the next yard pulling the kid behind her. But for now they are trapped by the neighbor’s fence. So I figure I’ll call the police.
So I run into the house and grab the phone but it’s dead. So I grab my cell phone.

I dial 911 and I hear two voices on the line. One is the faint voice of my mother (who is dead in real life) and the voice of a man. With everyone talking at once I can’t understand anyone. I’m not even sure they can hear me. So I hang up and try again. Again I hear two voices. My mom’s is even fainter, but the man’s voice sounds like a sinister person, not like the police at all, so I hang up.

Part 2
In the next part of the dream I am on the front porch with my 10 year old daughter. We are leaving to find a safe place. I am locking the door. Then I notice a bag of belongings on the porch. Thinking they must belong to the woman that broke in, I unlock the door again to toss the bag inside and save it for the police. But when I swing the door inward, I can see a hole where someone broke through to undo the dead bolt and door lock, and then a wooden panel from the center of the door falls out, leaving a big hole, as if someone had sawn around it. Uncertain as to how to cover the hole before we leave, I step back inside while my daughter waits on the porch. I glance around for some wood to cover the hole. Realizing my mistake I yank open the front door and yell at my daughter to get inside. But she is already gone.

Frantically I glance around and spot that woman again. I grab her by the fabric of her neckline. I am yelling in her face, ‘Where is my daughter.” She said , “_______ had her.” (Unfortunately I can’t remember the name now.So I yell, “Show me where he is.”
She takes me to a nearby back yard that looks like someone has been camping in it. Right when we get there, two men come around the corner of the house. One of the men is tied or handcuffed by the wrist to my daughter. I am livid.

We are yelling back and forth. Somehow I grab this cutting tool out of the guy’s hand. I am trying to cut the ties that hold my daughter to the man. I get her free and we start to run. I glance back and see one of them has found a gun. But we run on anyway.

Part 3
I’m in a motel room. I have my daughter with me, but now I have my other daughter too. And she’s just a toddler. We are holed up in this room without any money or food and my youngest daughter asks for a cookie. I see one in our little bag of stuff. A round white cookie so I give it to her.

Then it is night and we are in a yard. I see a police car cruising the neighborhood. We yell and wave until it stops. I’m telling the policewoman the whole story. I show her the weapon. She takes it to study it and puts it in her pocket. “We need that”, I say, “It’s our only protection.” She is clearly not going to give it back. She drives off without doing anything.

Part 4
I am inside my apartment again. I am by the front door. I see someone has pinned a bunch of photos and drawings to it. One says, “Thanks for the chocolate milk.” But the rest are just ugly drawings of me. I can’t remember much of those. And then I finally wake up.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Social Networking Sites

Marianne working on a bow at a Paleoplanet gathering.

Here is it Friday morning already. This week just flew by. I've been busy honing my social networking skills. I'm now on Facebook, Flickr, Youtube, Twitter, Tumblr, Linkedin, Hubpages, and half a dozen other ones. A person with no life could literally spend every waking moment doing online networking. I have to pry myself away from the computer with a tire iron.

Yesterday I heard a random blurb on TV that the average person sits for over 8 hours a day. I probably sit even more than that between the Internet, creating arts and crafts, eating, watching TV, and riding in a car/bus/train. I totally wish I had a treadmill hooked to my computer monitor. 'No walkie, no talkie.'

So every day I do gardening, hooping, juggling, and some dancing. The dancing is more like stretching because I have so little space to move in where someone isn't gawking at me. I've just started another monthly archery gathering, so now we'll have two a month and that should help with the physical end of things. If nothing else I get exercise walking to and from the truck to the archery range. Then if I shoot arrows I get a lot more walking in retrieving all those arrows. Most of them land on the hay bales nowadays, so I don't have to hunt and fetch quite as much as I used to.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Library Hour Cutbacks

I was off to the library this morning at 9 AM when I remembered they don't open until 11 AM on Mon. through Thurs. and noon on Friday and Sat. With all the California budget woes, I'm amazed we have libraries at all. It just seems wrong to cut something that increases the education of the populace. Libraries don't just have books, but computers for those that can't afford their own, videos, community meetings, unemployment resources, tax forms, and many other things that keep a city working smoothly. I'm sure the staff at libraries fights all the time to keep their branches open.

I've always loved libraries. It was one of the more pleasant things I got to do with my father. Did you know military bases have libraries? In high school I worked at my library. Years later after I had children, I volunteered at the Cal Poly SLO library for a while. If you want your kids to frequent libaries, set a good example by going to libraries.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Dinner and a Sick Cat

Since I'm doing my best to dance each day or at least stretch so I can dance, I just did a round of stretching and footwork. I am very stiff from a weekend of hiking, juggling, altatl dart throwing, and hauling bins, chairs, tables, and food. Basically I was useless today. I did have to run to the post office to mail an Etsy order to a customer. And later we went to the woodworking store and a grocery store. But once I got home I sat at my computer, too stiff and tired to move. I made myself get up and stretch. I should have cleaned the aquarium filter. Ah well. It's after 9 and dinner still isn't ready. I asked my boyfriend if we'd be eating soon and all he said was, "I just made meat." But he didn't get up to cut the meat or get plates or anything. I don't want to offend him by getting my own dinner. I ate some honey roasted peanuts to tide me over. He's tired too. For all I know he fell asleep on the couch.

Our cat has been sick today too. He doesn't want to eat. He just lays about looking lethargic. We may have to go to the vet if he's not perky by morning.

Caption: The fish I made in the crochet contest.

Seek the Light

I just had a very strange and epic dream this morning. I won't tell the whole dream, because it was quite long, but rather the ending.

At the end of the dream, I was wearing brown robes. My hair was long. I was younger and thinner than I am now. I was carrying a stave made of wood. The top had a carved wooden ornament with four lathed spiral finials. The staff was taller than me by about 2 feet. I'll post a photo of a drawing of it. I think inside the ornate top there was a mirror, or a light, or stained glass. As I was holding the staff I was also clutching 3 long sticks of incense.
The world was a crowded place. Many people were meandering around, so I joined the first parade of people that went by. They were shouting out random things to the crowd. They were all dressed in brown too. When no one else was yelling anything I would yell out "Seek the Light."

There was a man marching with us with medium long curly brown hair and kind eyes, so we took to standing somewhat near each other and watching each other. At one point every time I spoke something out loud, he would say the very same thing at the very same time. We both seemed quite amused at this.

Eventually we lost site of each other and the parade meandered away from me and after walking alone a bit I wound up in another parade. It was still light out. I'm still randomly calling out 'Seek the light'. Then I realize the new parade is wandering into a building. Too late I realize they are all funneling into a church service. Knowing that is wrong somehow, I turn to go. In the entryway there are all kinds of rusty statues. One is of Jesus on the cross. That seems really creepy to me, but there was also a sculpture of a bunch of giant forks all welded together at the base. I wondered what that could possibly mean.

As I left the building I soon passed a group of people preaching to the crowd. One man shouted out, "Don't spend money on root canals, spend it on feeding the poor."

I thought what an odd thing to say, for what good is it if you feed the poor only to die of a tooth infection. I could see forgoing pleasure to feed the poor, but you have to take care of your own health first, otherwise you won't live long to help others.

So I walked on. I passed this older man who was standing there in black or dark robes. As I walked up to him my skirt elastic gave out and it fell down. Quite mortified I was trying to pull it back up, though I still had a slip on under it. This man is watching me and says, "What is that you are holding." So I look at the staff and the incense I am clutching.
With the other hand I'm still trying to fix my clothes. At that point I woke up and realized I was trying to pull my blanket back up though I was still covered with the sheet.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Today's Highligts

So much happened at the archery range today I can't cover it all. So I'll just do the highlights.

1. Found part of a dead snake.
2. Saw a gopher nibbling on the end of Ken's bow stave.
3. Hula hooped with a pregnant lady and a 10 year old boy.
4. Missed all but 2 altalt shots.
5. Watched Alex start a primitive fire.
6. Saw a man walking 3 beautiful whippets.
7. Attempted to juggle five balls while filming a video of myself.
8. Saw Alex shatter an atlatl dart which then flew in two directions.
9. Saw Mike's new bow bench and David's new chainmail.
10. Saw Ken building some sort of forge for knives.

I have photos to upload but that's a job for another day.

And The Archery Field Was Overrun

I was right about ready to turn off my computer and crawl into bed when I remember my committment to do this daily journaling. Granted it's almost 1 AM it's close enough.

Today when we got to the archery range, there was a huge archery tournament going on. There were more cars than parking spaces and they were parked all over the grass. The grass is the area our organizer had paid the city a fee to reserve for us for our knitting, juggling,& archery event. She got there around 9 AM to set up and there was just no way we'd be able to use the area and move all those cars. And even if we could get them to leave the grass, there'd be no parking spaces for all the knitters, jugglers and so forth to park from our group.

And the only reason I got my boyfriend to drive me there was so he could do archery. The archery that wasn't going to happen now. Because the club of archers had rented the entire range.

Our leader had driven down the horseshoe shaped narrow road and found us a spot in another part of the park near restrooms. She did the best she could but there was only parallel parking and some of the spinners had to lug their spinning wheels a very far way.

But once we got all settled we managed to have a very good time anyway. We had contests, and a raffle and lots of eating and hooping. I juggled but no one else did. I guess the jugglers took their party elsewhere, maybe to the park in Irvine.

I won some yarn and stitch markers in the raffle.

My friend is going to try to get a refund for the reserved spot we got kicked out of. No way she should have to pay if she couldn't use that spot.

Friday, June 18, 2010

About Dance, Juggling, Atlatls, Knitting and Hooping

My newest project is taking a photo of myself dancing every day. It seemed like a good idea at the time, but I think most of the photos are just going to be me in my backyard, because it's been years since I danced in public anymore, mostly because it's just not that fun to dance when I'm overweight and self-concious.

I'm getting ready for 2 events this weekend. The first is at El Dorado Regional Park. It's a combination of World Juggling Day and World Knit in Public Day. It's at an archery range so I'll take my bow too. If we have to pay $8.00 to park inside the park, I want to get my money's worth.

Then on Sunday is our monthly Paleoplanet bowmaker's gathering. And it's an atlatl competition as well, so I'm going to take my archery stuff, my crating gear and my newly finished darts. I haven't made an atlatl yet but I'm pretty sure someone there will let me borrow one. I just hope I have enough energy to make it through the weekend. I was so tired today I had to lay down and take a nap, and I hate napping because it makes me feel like a little old lady.

I guess we are going to try to be there at 9 AM tomorrow, even though it starts at 10. But we have heavy gear and need a good parking space. We are taking watermelon and snacks too. And my hula hoops. One way or another I'm getting some exercise tomorrow.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Under the Weather

I just realized I hadn't made a post here in a long time. Life got complicated and typing is difficult. I'm seeing a Dr. to find out why my hands hurt all the time. But I won't know for another week what's going on. So I've been trying to lay off the typing.

I've had some sort of 24 hour flu thing, but the good side is I was too sick to be on the Internet, so essentially didn't type for 2 days. I've had tons of sewing, knitting and crocheting projects that I've had to put on hold until I find out what's going on with my hands. The Dr. already ruled out arthritus and carpal tunnel syndrome.