Category Archives: Current Events

Diane’s 70 (JJIJ)


I love Diane Keaton and am amazed that she just turned 70 years old last week, on January 5. The Oscar-winning actress has made 49 movies, appeared on television, and won many other awards in a career acting in drama and comedy that has spanned 46 years.

Here’s a few clips of her interviews that I just love, as well as the trailer for my favorite D.K. movie, Something’s Gotta Give. She is so me in this movie. 😉  (AND yes I can be a sucker for a good romance, though that is so not all I am about. One of my other fav movies is Man on Fire – go figure 😉 )

Anyway – here’s Diane . . .

You go girl!! ❤ 🙂

 

 

She just cracks me up!!!

Anyway – Happy 70th Birthday Diane, you badass you 😉

Just something I was thinking about . . .

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http://lindaghill.com/2015/12/31/just-jot-it-january-2016-rules/

What’s going on??


It’s been a while since I’ve been able to spend any time with my WP family. I have missed your posts and writing my own, as well. So much has been happening in the world of late, honestly more than I can keep up with some days.

The Supreme Court has been quite busy. I must admit, I am happy with much of what they have done. What other people do in their own lives that doesn’t affect me shouldn’t be any of my concern, or anyone else’s. Same-sex marriage, the Affordable Care Act, and abortion rights in Texas, among others, were all championed by the justice system and reasonable thinking.

Don’t get me wrong, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) needs some work, especially in the states that refused to assist its citizens by setting up a state marketplace. But, by and large, it was the right thing to do.  When I heard Ted Cruz signed his family up, I thought had you supported a state exchange in Texas, the prices would’ve been more reasonable – but Ted was against the ACA, vehemently if I remember correctly. Is that irony?

There’s been all kinds of racial incidents with the police. I was truly shocked and saddened by the church shooting in South Carolina.  The victims families handled it with such grace and dignity, from what I saw, though I have truly tried to limit my intake of the news lately.

Then there’s the escaped convict incident – I was surprised when someone said to me, regarding the first escaped convict’s shooting death, “I hope he had a gun, you know since he was white and all.“ (Not touching this one . . .) I can say so much, but just can’t right now. He WAS an escaped convict and he did have a shotgun.

I keep hearing all over the place that jobs are up and unemployment is down. I can’t help but ask myself, “Where the hell are they getting these numbers? Where are they looking?”  My husband is still unemployed, as are many others I know that are in my age group. And that’s just in my neck of the woods and what I hear from my contacts nationwide. I was working part-time, but my little part-time gig is about to come to a close in two weeks – no money coming in.

My daughter gave me a Starbucks gift card for Mother’s Day and I had one more coffee left on it and stopped in at my fav Starbucks, which is inside my grocery store, so I see the baristas frequently. The lady working that day is about my age and got laid off from her good job a year and a half ago. While we were chatting, she shared that they hired a new lady last week who’s real nice, has a Ph.D., but got laid off from a government contractor over a year ago and this is the only place she could get hired. She, of course, is in my age group, and is now making $7.56 an hour.

Does anyone realize what’s happening here . . . the age discrimination, much of it involving insurance coverage. The insurance companies HEAVILY influence hiring decisions, it’s not just the employers. I think we would be amazed at just what all the insurance companies have influence over!

Our age group has a huge effect on the economy with our traditional buying power. But many of us are living on our retirement savings 10-15 years before we are supposed to, and paying a penalty for it, though it is against our will and our better judgment – it’s done out of survival. Many were expecting to make up for lost years over the next decade and have nothing left to fall back on.

When cars are repossessed and houses are foreclosed on, and this group is now reduced to government aid to survive – more people now on what is often referred to as government “socialism” – this country’s backbone is going to begin to start to crack, splinter, and break.  And if these 50+ year-olds are unfortunate enough to not be able to afford COBRA or the ACA, many will fall into the category where they don’t fall into the age group that can get Medicaid or Medicare. People in this situation and age group are SOL and better hope/pray that nothing serious happens, or they could be most majorly screwed . . .

Though I will admit, I have not done my homework regarding the actual statistics; I can’t help but believe this is the one of the first times in history where fifty-plus-year-olds have been singled out to be extinguished from the workplace. (If I am wrong, please educate me!) If this trend continues, I see some serious hurt for the future of this country – I’m not an economist, but common sense and history tells the story that what may come is unprecedented and could be catastrophic.

ON A PERSONAL NOTE: Regarding my gig . . . well my instincts proved to be correct. Definitely too good to be true.  The guy I was working for isn’t too motivated, canceling every training session we had scheduled for really lame reasons like, “It’s been a rough day, I worked setting up your email, and I need a drink, so I’m outta here.” Or early one Saturday morning, “Sorry I cut out, my neighbor needed help and I said I would, not sure why ‘cause I’m usually not that neighborly.” You know that kind of stupid shit.

When it came to him selling policies to the appointments I made on these mostly 2-8 year-old leads, he canceled and we rescheduled a few for reasons that were not important. I had a list of about 35 people I had talked to that he needed to speak with for various reasons – high risk, specific questions not related to exact cost but involving health issues, etc. He finally got appointed to sell the high-risk policies he found were best and last Saturday he told me he was calling them all. When I showed up, he said he couldn’t call them because he had set up the online account to access what he needed to quote them prices, but forgot the password and wouldn’t be able to get it on a Saturday. Seriously . . .

Then when he told me a few days later he couldn’t afford to pay me any longer, but if I wanted I could still make calls and he would give me my commission – but he couldn’t afford to pay me for calling.Then he had the nerve to tell me that now he was really going to have to hustle and start working his book business. I’m thinking, dude, why haven’t you been doing that all along.

Long Term Care coverage is his specialty, but it is not cheap, typically. I’m working leads that are years old, and he had me listen to training tapes that were on cassettes and 20 years old – what does that tell you. During our discussion I reminded him that things have changed in the last 20 years – people don’t think the same, communicate the same, research purchases and purchase the same, and marketing and sales have changed considerably. Yeah, he didn’t want hear that – he’s four years younger than me and living in a bubble of some sort.

Anyway, now I have two avenues to explore – my established career, and my new inexperienced career. Maybe one of them will get me somewhere. It’s been two years – I need a break . . . a real one. I don’t consider any of this wasted time, as I have now learned many new things and have earned licenses and certifications in new areas.

Oh, and the fig tree is a monster producer. I have canned over 50 jars so far of various fig jams and preserves. It was fun and I think I have another two weeks or more. My kitchen is covered in figs in various stages of ripeness and jars everywhere – and I am growing weary!

Oh!! And what about that Bill Cosby – TV’s All American Dad and his fondness for Quaaludes, among other things?? Wow, so TV and real live aren’t the same?? (YES, I am laughing at that fucking piece of irony in the midst of all else . . .)

Anyway, just some things I was thinking about . . . (and my mind still reels, but this post is already wayyyy too long . . . but got something else coming soon  . . .)

They’re Back!!!!


I am so frickin’ excited!! I’m sitting out in the backyard, and my black-mouth cur is just pacing around under my HUGE fig tree with his nose straight up in the air. I hoped I was right . . . as I had already started looking for them a month or so back.

Walking out in the yard and standing under the huge canopy of this odd tree, as we look up, my husband and I see two baby owlettes. Upon further inspection, we found two more, a little better camouflaged.

I feel so lucky that the owls chose my little corner thicket and huge fig tree to raise their little family in again.

They garnered a lot of excitement last year, so thought I’d share my privilege 🙂 Hopefully more pics soon!!

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Just something I was thinking about . . . ☮

I Passed!!!!


Oh my goodness – I passed the insurance exam, and now can apply for my license to be a producer for Life Health & Accident Insurance!! And I made a pretty respectable score, better than I was expecting. (Yeah, I was stressing just a bit!)

I haven’t had to take a test like this in a long time and though I have always been an above average student and an excellent test-taker, I was a bit worried. I am a lot older and my memory, in my opinion, doesn’t seem to be as good, and in all honesty this isn’t something I ever saw myself attempting to obtain.

Life can lead you down some strange and unexpected paths throughout your lifetime. At least mine has, that’s for sure. I’ve always been a good writer, and love the craft. I have spent the last 20 years working as a writer, which in all honesty I never anticipated, or even dreamed of, in my twenties. I can be a natural-born storyteller, and can have a roomful of people cracking the fuck up and fully engaged. I tend to make people think in different perspectives. I’m not always what one might expect 😉 I like that about me, and I think others do, too.

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Be open-minded . . .

Having said all that, I am not a salesperson, and have NEVER aspired to be. BUT, from my own experiences, I know how important and advantageous safe annuities and Long Term Care insurance can be to one’s future. Right now I am setting appointments, and will now be making commissions 🙂 Never worked on commission before, that’ll be different. And here’s to having mentors – people who may see things in you that you might not see.

Well, here’s to a new path, new adventure, new experiences, and hopefully some income that’s not from our 401K. Stopping the bleeding there would be awesome . . .

Anyway – I want to thank all of you for your support

I have a wonderful family, and it continues to grow larger (just had a new great-niece born three weeks ago), and more great friends than I can count, but my blogging family is important to me, too. I miss y’all when I am absent, just like with my other friends and family. I miss reading your posts, and will be blog-bingging/stalking you soon! And I know I have been so neglectful of my blogs, but I am hoping to start posting more regularly. Thanks for sticking with me 🙂

Oh, and I just have to say . . . I will miss Doobster . . . Mindful Digressions can be such a pleasure . . .

Just something I was thinking about . . .

February Already?!?


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I want to thank Yvette over at Priorhouse Blog for the awesome billboard image she made just for me ❤

I can’t believe it is already February! February, really . . .

Each year that I celebrate another revolution around the sun, it seems that my revolutions get faster. And though I feel a bit like my ass is on the front-end of a rocket, I also feel as though I am on a slow free drift out in the middle of the ocean – no land to be seen, anywhere.

I can’t remember the last time I actually wore a watch – well yes, I can, it was 19 months ago. Often I have no idea where my day goes – it’s just gone. I wake up and then before I know it, it’s way past normal peoples’ bedtime.

Though I spend a large amount of time searching for a job, and working on other ways to make a living, I also spend a lot of time doing mindless/relaxing/time-suck activities – but they are activities I enjoy that when I worked I did not have time for.

Here’s a good for instance – I had planned to re-work my resume today, which may or may not need to be done. Instead I have spent a good part of the day catching up on a few of my fav blogs, though there are many more I want to get to!! [Okay by the time I finished this post, I did get my resume re-worked 🙂 ]

I have get to make three batches of apple butter this week, and blueberry jam, since blueberries are on sale at the grocery store and I have had many requests for that one. For some reason though, I am feeling quite lazy today . . . though I like a little winter, I have had enough. I feel for all y’all getting the brunt of this winter, mine is mild compared to yours.

I have started working on my posts about our food supply and how fucked up it is. Those are forthcoming. I keep writing myself into a corner in my novel – not sure what’s up with that! My blogs are all being neglected (yeah, I laughed out loud at that one!).

There’s a couple of very interesting jobs I have applied for in the last couple of weeks. I am so hoping to get an interview for at least one. Any extra prayers, good thoughts, finger-crosses, rabbit’s foot rubs, whatever I can get – I’ll take them!!

Loved the fight at the end of the Super Bowl game – what a shining example that was for the youth of our country 😉 (Yes, that was meant to be snarky!)

They keep saying unemployment is going down, but I know more and more people who are unemployed than I have ever known before, and sadly many are in the 50+ age group. Most of us aren’t being counted on the unemployment rolls anymore. I do live in an area where there have been many different industries laying off employees, and are continuing to do so.

Valentine’s Day is coming up and I bought each of my granddaughters a giant card. I was thrilled that they were $3 a piece and were Made In America 🙂 (which honestly is the only reason I bought them) AND I found them at Walmart of all places.

I also want to send a shout out and thank you to Doobster at Mindful Digressions for the honor of his nomination for the Premio Dardos award. According to Doobs, “Premio Dardos means “Prize Darts” in Spanish. It is an award given for recognition of cultural, ethical, literary, and personal values transmitted in the form of creative and original writing.” I haven’t named my 15 bloggers yet, as I have decided to add that widget of the blogs I follow  – I like that idea because in my opinion they are all worth reading!!

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Just a few random things I was thinking about today . . .

Happy Bday Janis – Just Jot It January


Yes, as customary for me lately, I am a day late and probably a dollar short, too – if we were to count and get technical 🙂

Yesterday, January 19, was the birthday of Janis Joplin. I was just an elementary school kid when she was making a name for herself and then burnt up in a star’s cosmic tale tragically dying.

Between Janis, Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Duane Allman, Jim Croce, Mama Cass Elliot, and a few others – there was this group of trail blazing musicians/poets/storytellers/performers that graced our presence for a short time, but left us with music and legends that hopefully will live on forever! They will for me, anyway – as I have so many memories connected to their songs.

When my husband and I moved into our first apartment, we didn’t have a lot of money – I was several weeks from turning 18, and he had just tuned 19 several weeks before – so money was tight, and decorating was, well let’s say that of young people. We had two LARGE silk screen prints – one of Janis Joplin and one of Jim Morrison that graced the walls of our living and dining area.

The CD had not been invented yet, and though cassettes existed, albums were still quite desirable. I hit a well known local record store typically once a week for new albums, though some really were old, and other “things” – sometimes the first expenditure from my just received paycheck. (Yes, this was a paper check, as direct deposit didn’t exist back then either – yes now I am laughing, as well!). Damn, times were good back then 🙂

Anyway – realizing it was her birthday brought back some wonderful memories, and since I have been such a slacker lately about writing anything of real substance (this is a blog that is intended to make people think about their world and what’s going on around them after all) – thought I might share a little more about myself and my influences and experiences. At least I am writing 🙂 I’ve been working on the novel a bit, but then got stuck again. It’s a personal thing and I’m working on it.

Here’s a couple videos I hope you will enjoy. Hard choice, as I really love Janis – she speaks to me. I have actually been compared to her a few times, mostly because my voice is deep and raspy – though we really sound nothing alike.

 

And the one me and my “peeps” know and love, and one I’ve been singing, even
a cappella, since high school . . .

 

And of course, the ever-famous and another we sang all the words to 🙂

Hope you enjoy ❤

Just something I was thinking about  . . .

[Also, written in response to Linda Hill’s Just Jot It January Prompt :-)]

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No Mother – One-Liner Wednesday


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So I keep seeing this picture on Facebook, and I’m not sure where exactly it came from or how “authentic” it is. But the first time I saw it, I just had one thought . . .

No mother should have to fear for any of their loved ones lives because someone else’s son robs a store, regardless of race. 

Anyway, just something I was thinking about . . .

[Written for Linda Hill’s One-Liner Wednesday, though it’s neither funny or inspirational per say, so I didn’t exactly follow the rules this time.]

Image source: https://www.facebook.com/waltonandjohnson/photos/a.178779813472.122034.172224883472/10152617857393473/?type=1

Thank You & Happy Thanksgiving!


Hope you all had a Happy Thanksgiving – if you celebrate it! I spent mine with my family and we ate until we hurt 😉 Yes, a traditional Thanksgiving dinner!

I doubt seriously that I am going to “win” NaNoWriMo by completing my 50, 000 words, but I managed to get a little over 25,000 words and I am continuing to work it as much as possible through the weekend, but regardless I will keep working on it after, as well. I have made great progress this month – more than I ever have before. I have other pieces to the story that I had written previously that can be incorporated and woven into the overall story – so certainly not a wasted effort by any means! I have gotten some good feedback in various places – and would look forward to more should you decide to peruse a few tidbits I shared and provide comments.

I have so been missing reading your blogs and plan to catch up with everyone next week!!

I also have quite a few topics on my list of future posts that I want to start knocking out 🙂

Thought I might share this song with you – it’s another one of my favs! May we all have someone like this in our lives, be it spouses, lovers, friends, family, kids, grandkids 🙂

Just something I was thinking about, as I’m reflecting on my many blessings today  ❤

[This song came on as I’m listening to my iTunes writing my novel – so of course I wanted to share & got distracted LOL!! Hope you enjoy it!]

nanoPoblano               NaBloPoMo_1114_465x287_NOV

There’s a little bomb in your airbag


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Yep, it’s true, heard it on the news the other night. A company in Japan is being investigated for injuries caused when the automobile airbags they manufacture are exploding into the very people they are made to protect.

Japanese airbag manufacturer Takata Corporation originally discovered the issue back in 2004 and began to investigate, according to insider reports, but then shut that internal investigation down and destroyed all evidence collected. The airbags in question were made at the company’s Monclova Plant in Mexico. The issue and several recalls, involve defective inflator and propellant devices.

In 1998, Takata publicized the fact that they were using tetrazole, a new propellant developed as a “reliable and effective compound” for airbag inflation. By 2001, they had switched to an ammonium nitrate compound, which is among other things a cheaper alternative. Ammonium nitrate  is highly sensitive to temperature changes and moisture. It also breaks down over time, which can result in violent combustion. Ammonium nitrate is used in fertilizer, in the manufacture of explosives, and in solid rocket fuel.

Still considered one of the worst accidents in Texas history, in 1947 a ship, the S.S. Grandcamp was taking on a load of ammonia nitrate, when it caught fire and exploded (killing close to 600 people. It had caught on fire and the fire department was trying put it out when it became unstable and exploded killing all twenty-six Texas City firemen. They all thought it was just fertilizer and had no idea of the danger. Wow, does that sound familiar – they had no idea of the danger.

My point here, Takata manufactured and sold these devices that have been installed in almost 8 million vehicles in the U.S. alone, according the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. These defective airbags explode releasing metal shrapnel pieces. My research showed that the other airbag manufacturers do not use this type of propellant. Pretty nasty stuff, especially when I already worry as close as I have to sit to the steering wheel that I’m going to be decapitated or have my chest crushed as it is . . .

I have to be honest, I had never given a thought to how my airbags worked, and I’ll bet most of you haven’t either – yet we use these unconsciously every day, with them pointed at our faces and chests.

If you haven’t checked your vehicle, this is your public service announcement – please do so here:

List of Vehicles Involved

VIN Recall Registry

Just something I was thinking about . . .

[Still working on the novel for NaNoWriMo – but seriously behind. Close to 25,000 words. Whether I make it or not, I’m already much further than I have ever made it before, so . . . I’m cool, and not giving up yet, either. 🙂 ]

nanoPoblano       NaBloPoMo_1114_465x287_NOV

Tupperware® Got Me Thinking


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So my last post got me to thinking about Tupperware®. I love Tupperware® and have many pieces I bought years ago from a party I had. I even have a couple of very old pieces from my grandmas, back from the late 1940s and 1950s. After World War II, Earl Tupper modified his factory machines to mold raw polyethylene (developed for weapons use) into food containers – using a paint can as inspiration for the tight-fitting lids. Originally, Tupperware®  was made in the Massachusetts’ plastics industrial complex.

I emailed them last week, using the “Contact Us” link on their website, inquiring about where their products are manufactured. Several emails went back and forth, and I must admit they were very prompt with their responses. I was told that Tupperware® products are made all over the world – Mexico, Brazil, Venezuela, Portugal, France, Belgium, Greece, India, China, Korea, Japan and United States.

I was assured of their continued history of high quality and design and “all Tupperware® products meet all applicable laws and regulations for product safety in each country they are made.” I’m not sure what that means exactly. Do they mean that all countries manufacture products that meet all U.S. laws and regulations regarding health safety, or are they different in different countries? Pretty sure it was stated that way on their website, too.

Though their home office is in Orlando, Florida, their Customer Care Center is located in Mexico City. You know I asked, and I asked because I could tell from the way the email was composed. Again – that shit just pisses me off, though they were – again – prompt and most informative and polite. But their English writing skills weren’t great. Kind of scares me when big corporations don’t find good clear concise written communication important.

A Google search turned up a WP blog that stated “the Tupperware®  factory in the United States is located in Hemmingway, South Carolina.” Debra Todd Jordan, a Tupperware®  consultant, went on to say, “Each plant makes the items that are indigenous to their region.” So, if that’s correct, I can get on board with that – if nothing else saves on shipping and props up the economies using the products. Unfortunately, how those corporate taxes are handled I probably would not agree with.

Anyway, since I didn’t have my fingers in enough pies this week, I had to research this 😉 I am a glutton for punishment lately. Just thought I’d share what I found out. I haven’t bought any lately, but read in my research that now they are not marked with where they are made, just the Tupperware® mark. Where our medicines come from is next on my agenda – after . . .

Still working NaNoWriMo . . . still behind, but continuing to work it. I may not meet my goal, but damn it, I will be further along in this story than I have been. I posted a couple of snippets from the novel on my other blog, in the event you are interested in this type of reading. It is very different from this blog – that’s why I have more than one, my interests are varied, random, eclectic for sure.  My novel is fiction, with a little romance thrown in, more a story of life and how it plays out sometimes. There’s a lot of dialog. If you check it out, please leave me some feedback. I value and respect all of your opinions as writers in general. Having said that – don’t make me cry now 😉

All of a sudden I have a bunch of people wanting apple butter and this week blackberries are on sale for 88-cents a six-ounce container, so I have a few orders I have to fill this week. Doesn’t make much money, but brings in a little cash and I enjoy doing it. (Though my hands aren’t as good as they used to be and when you make this shit – if you’re doing it right, you’re gonna get burned LOL – seriously! Looking forward to that blackberry jam, though!!)

Listening to this right now – I find this to be good writing music sometimes, depending on my mood . . . plus it’s raining and the wind’s kicking, and the windchimes are singing – n~i~c~e.

Also, trying to keep up with y’all, slowly but surely 😉 I’m definitely becoming a binge reader, seemly stalking sites 🙂

Just some things I was thinking about ☮☮☮

[POSTSCRIPT – OH NO, the video I linked to has been removed . . . that’s never happened to me before. I hope I didnt just get added to some LIST somewhere, ya know what I mean 😉 I’m going to look for another link, but in case I don’t find one, the music was the soundtrack to the movie “Rush” from 1992, mostly instrumentals by Eric Clapton. Soulful, contemplative music for sure!]

nanoPoblano                                                                           NaBloPoMo_1114_465x287_NOV