Wednesday, June 17, 2015


The peril of midnight gardening, when it comes to pruning, is the distressing tendency to mistake one or more of the fingers on your left hand for the stem or branch you are attempting to prune.  I left quite a bit of blood in the bulb bed late last night.

I blame the STINKING HOT weather for my need to work in pitch dark.

Yesterday, I read three entire books.
I miss reading.
Often my eyes won't let me read much.

I forgot that I wanted to try giving up my Prime membership, especially since Amazon has lost the rights to so very many shows I enjoyed watching.  So, I put a reminder in my calendar for next year.   I do think that it is rather greedy of Amazon to not pro-rate your membership, especially after raising the price such a significant percentage.  I noticed the charge just outside the window for canceling the membership.  Getting promotional credits is all nice and good, but I hardly watch anything on there anymore.  I can always bundle purchases for free standard shipping.

Today, other than wishing for my finger to heal, I planned to fetch two prescriptions from Target, but one of them did not come in for the third day in a row ... the new dose of theophylline.  I want to see if I can finagle the two from last week and the two from this week into one trip by shifting refill dates in the coming months. Too many trips to Target means too much temptation over mini powdered donuts.  Anyway, all that I have done is eat pulled pork tacos and read two more books.  I just started a third.

I have been deeply worried about the news that Target was selling its pharmacy business to CVS.  I dared to ask my beloved pharmacists if they will keep their jobs.  Right now, they do not know anything.  I honestly do not know how I would manage my medications without their help.  Plus, I have rarely had to wait in line at Target but I always had a very long wait when I went to CVS for the last bottles of the Erythromycin solution.

As far as the erythromycin goes, I am still not all that more ill off of the medication.  I do have more motility issues in my large intestine, so I adjusted two of the three OTC meds my old GP had me taking for that.  Mostly, though, I upped my fiber and water.  The problem is my body reacts to anything like someone sitting on the end of a seesaw when the other person hops off ... or a heavier person jumps on.

Amos is still sulking.
It's a new record for him.
Poor not quite so fluffy fluff-ball.

Here he is enjoying the weighted blanket on Monday.  I hogged it yesterday and today.  Perhaps, if he stops trying to punish me for tending to his personal care, I might share again.

I might possibly called Firewood Man and shamelessly begged for him to replace the balusters.  The problem is, however, the never ending rain we are having.  Mowing is his chief income and his main priority.  Trying to get lawns mowed in the rain and now soggy soil is rather difficult for him.  He let me natter on about my concerns about meeting a new doctor and my desire for porch closure and my puppy's grudge against me and the pruning I did and the fact that I am not sure I would recognize sunshine any more, given the gray, gray, gray, gray, always gray days we are having.  The end result was no time slot yet for finishing the railing, but a bit less lonesomeness and frustration on my part.

On an odd note:  I was reading this article about protestors in Greece against austerity measures.  Some of the protestors are wearing signs that say "Our lives don't belong to the lenders."  Well, actually, they do.  If you borrow money from lenders, you are responsible for making choices to ensure the lenders will get their money back.  You have an obligation and a legal duty to return the money.  You cannot just live however you want as long as you have that debt looming over you.  I just don't get the people and government of Greece who view lenders as villains.  I mean, if this is how they are treating the people and institutions that bailed them out from their economic ruin the first time round, who do they expect is going to help them after defaulting??  Sure, Greece can leave and print its own money, but just because you have a currency doesn't mean others have to accept it as payment.

I have also read several articles/posts in response to an Op Ed piece that the New York Times (irresponsibly) published that advocates defaulting on student loans, such as this one.  Thankfully, all the pieces I have read in response to the Op Ed (nonsense) have been rightly appalled at such arrogance of the writer.  He is stealing not just from lending institutions, but from you and from me.  How is it that folk have come to a place in this country where they believe they have the right to be financially supported for whatever they want to do??  The guy got THREE degrees, two graduate.  He made a choice to take on the debt, going to expense schools because he "deserved" to do so, and then walked away from his financial and legal obligation.  He is nothing more than a thief and a liar who advocates for others to lie and steal as well.

What one author opined is that he probably is avoiding the automatic garnishment from defaulting because he is freelancing.  There is no regular paycheck from an employer to snag.  The best the government could do is to take his tax return, but it is easy to make it so that you don't have a return to take; file and pay taxes rather than have more withheld or more paid in estimated taxes than necessary.

As an ex-professor, and someone who got three degrees with only a small loan at the end because my school job was cut, I become filled with ire over folk saying that you HAVE to go into tens of thousands of dollars of debt for a college education.  You don't.  Here's a simple plan:

  • If you ever get birthday or holiday monetary gifts as a youth, always put at least half in a savings account.
  • Work after school in high school and save your entire salary save for transportation expenses.
  • Study hard in school and apply for scholarships and grants.
  • Go to a community college for your first two years and live at home.
  • Transfer to a state college for the second two years.
  • Work throughout your schooling, particularly in on-campus jobs.
  • Live frugally throughout your schooling.
  • Do not take on debt beyond the ability to repay that debt (i.e., don't borrow $75,000 for an education degree because your working salary will always be too low to reasonably repay that money plus interest within 10 years).

However, the truth is, I do not believe that our culture values living below your means so that you can be and remain financially independent even when unexpected expenses arise.  Our culture is all about having everything now and everything you think you deserve instead of balancing needs and wants and planning for your future.

What I do know is that even if the austerity measures the lenders originally asked for in Greece made it more challenging for that economy, the lenders had NOTHING to do with Greek needing a bailout in the first place.  The heart of the problem lies solely with the people and government of Greece.

Or, to put it another way, I am utterly flummoxed and frustrated by those who continue to remain oblivious to the perils of poor fiscal practices and debt.

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