Thanksgiving plans

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Why are holidays so freaking hard to make plans for?

Multiple families, adult children, preferences, and schedules are so damn hard to make any definitive plans for. It is an irritating task every year, punctuated with the fact that trying to accommodate everyone is a real pain.

Why can’t it be more simple?

My parents & sibs, her parents and sibs, our children, their children…its chaos on the day but chaos and headaches leading up to it as well.

I think we’ve hear just about every excuse why something won’t work for somebody. Never can everyone ever cooperate with trying to make the plans or participate.

“I don’t like big groups.”

“We don’t know them that well and would be uncomfortable.”

“There is too much planning involved.”

“That isn’t our tradition.”

“We have to try to make it work for everyone so no one is left out.”

“I don’t want to do it that early.”

“There won’t be anything I can eat because of my diet.”

UGH!

It can’t just be, “We are doing lunch/dinner at XX:XX and if you would like to participate let us know. Here is what we are providing and here is what we still need: _________.”

No, that would be too easy.

It isn’t just this holiday either…Christmas, Easter, 4th of July…ugh.

Tiring. Irritating.

There is something to be said for being alone…just saying…

Better off?

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We’re coming up on an election again – Nov 2. As I look at the ballot sitting on the counter along with the Voter’s Guide, I am forced to stop and think about where we were a year ago. The question that keeps coming up in my mind, am I better off this year than I was last year? Maybe it’s an unfair comparison, maybe it isn’t. How are we to judge our politicians if we don’t look at it through that lens?

There were lots of promises that were made from the Democrats – LOTS of promises about making things better for everyone, if they could just get rid of the evil, orange man in the White House. Well, they were able to swing the vote (one way or another) to get their guy into the office, along with a whole bunch of other offices, with a promise of “Build Back Better” and it’s time to survey the land for improvement.

I don’t see any. None.

We’re coming up on a year and, quite frankly, I am not better off. I am actually noticing a lot of changes that are making life just a little bit more uncomfortable. The changes are slow in most cases, but there are some rather obvious ones that haven’t been slow at all.

I don’t know if you have noticed….of course you have noticed, jeez, you’re not blind…but the cost of EVERYTHING has gone up. Like everything! Automobiles, food, fuel, electronics, you name it. There isn’t a single thing that I have notices where the price has gone down. It’s more expensive to buy anything and everything. Those bills are creeping higher and higher. This wasn’t the case a year ago, so I am not better off there.

The government keeps reaching into my pocket and taking more money. Taxes have gone up on payroll, the ones that already existed before this administration took office (at the national level and the state level). But since then, there have been new taxes (not ones I asked for or voted on) have been added to my paycheck. So, nope, not better off here either.

Here’s something to think about too. About a year ago, most everyone was unvaccinated because the vaccine was just being approved and getting ready for rollout. Hospitalizations were high, but there was no claim that they were overwhelmed at that time. Now, more than 2/3rds of the country is vaccinated and they want to blame everything on the unvaccinated. Supposedly the hospitals are overwhelmed and there is now a mandate for workers to be vaccinated to keep their jobs and businesses want proof of vaccination before you can spend money at their place of business. I am near certain I am not better off now than I was last year at this time.

The media doesn’t report the facts, they report agenda. The “fact checkers” don’t check facts, they check against an agenda. Social media suppresses speech it doesn’t agree with, factual or not. Tolerance, across the board, is at an all time low. Natural rights are being taken away in favor of government granted privileges. “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness” seems to only apply if you are falling in line with the group-think. Think outside of that, well, you’re a hateful and intolerant bigot and you don’t deserve the same things being claimed all people deserve when they weren’t in charge. Again, I am not better off here either.

The border crisis is at epic proportions. China is flexing it’s muscle across the globe and making things less safe and testing supersonic missiles . There are cyber-spies or hackers under every rock (seemingly) these days. Afghanistan was a freaking disaster, where the Taliban have regained power and a safe haven for terrorists is now open for business again. North Korea is launching more missiles. Iran is doing their own thing with nuclear development, again. The world isn’t getting any safer, so I don’t feel better off on this front either.

Sure, some would argue that the Republicans are blocking everything the Democrats are trying to do to make things better for all
Americans. If they would just let the infrastructure (and other pet projects of the Liberals) bill pass…all I can say to that is that you’re dumb if you think that is the answer. Sure, the infrastructure needs some definite improvement, but you do realize that the money has to come from somewhere, right? The government is either going to reach real deep into your pockets (especially if you’re rich and worked hard for that money or made wise choices to get it) or it will be grabbed from businesses who will pass along the lost revenue due to taxes on to the consumer via higher costs on the goods you buy every day. YOU are going to be paying for that giant price tag, one way or another. So, no, that plan doesn’t really make my life better either.

So, What do you say? Do you like the way things are going so far? Are you truly better off today than you were a year ago?

Whose fault?

Alright, it’s time to find out who is to blame for this stuff. I analyze software as part of my job, but I have always been an analyst of sorts – even as a history teacher. Now, I am all about “root cause” and, frankly, I wanna know who to blame for the travesty that is grossly flavored coffee beans.

Who wakes up one morning and says, “Ya know, I think I would like some carrot cake coffee.” If you thought that, I call BS. This back of coffee grounds showed up by the community coffee maker and now I have to look at it every time I go to get more coffee. Why are they sharing it with others?

So, who is ultimately to blame for the existence of such crap? Is it the person/company that makes the beans, or is it the consumer who actually spends good money on the final product?

Would you buy this…garbage? If you would, WHY would you? I certainly wouldn’t, as I am sure you can tell by now.

Put a vote in to comments about who is to blame, company or consumer? What other gross flavors have you seen on the store shelves and thought, “WTH?”

Hard choices

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Today this blog is about hard choices. Really hard choices. The type of choices that might cause you to look back and think, “Dang, I totally made the wrong choice. I should have gone the other way.”

Today’s hard choice? Deciding what to have for lunch.

Choice #1 – a ham sandwich with bacon on a pretzel bagel

Choice #2 – leftover bbq’d chicken and homemade white bread.

I make hundreds, maybe even thousands, of decisions every day. Why is what to have for lunch such a difficult one?

I mean, they are both great options. Either one of them I could be happy with. But, there is always that nagging question in the back of the head saying, “You probably should have had the other one. It was probably a better choice.”

Ugh.

There here kind of decisions make or break a person’s day. Am I right? Make the wrong choice and things could go downhill quickly from here. Or make the right choice and everything after just seems to fall into place. There is potential for big success or massive failure. These are serious kinds of decisions…

So, what do you think? What sounds good to you?

Baked ham

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OK, it’s hot! It’s really, really hot!

These temps, up here in the Northwest corner of the United States, are not normal. If anyone asks, it rains all the time. Don’t move here. But, seriously, there are nice days here…except the the last two, and probably tomorrow too. It’s just unusually hot.

It isn’t the hottest part of the day, but the forecast is calling for a high somewhere in the neighborhood of 104 (105 depending on where you look) today. Of course, we all know those guys are rarely correct, so it will be hotter, for sure. At 12:31pm, it is currently 95 degrees outside.

Now, if you have been reading this blog for the last year and a half you will know that I have been working from home for the time of the “flu that is known by another name.” And, you will also know that my home office is in my garage. To further give details of my situation, know that my home and garage have no AC.

So, currently, at 12:31pm, the garage temp where I am working is 88 degrees and the house is 85 degrees.

I know know what a baked ham feels like, or a baked chicken. My family would probably say turkey. A baked turkey.

Anyway, stay cool out there…

Partied out

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It was a long weekend that started on Thursday night.

It was a weekend filled with food, celebration, and family.

Too much family.

Too much planning.

Too much to do to actually enjoy it.

Anyway, three birthday parties in two days…one on Saturday and two on Sunday.

All at my house.

It was a good time, but it was exhausting.

What’s worse is that there is always some family members that are there that you just rather wouldn’t be there. That’s harsh to say, I know, and I love them and all but they just make anything and everything more work.

Everyone had a good time. At least I think so.

I did and I didn’t.

At least it is over. I am partied out. I could care less if there are any more this year.

Smoke alarm

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First night home from vacation and a loud noise interrupts the peace. A loud, piercing, and from a dead sleep, shrieking noise. Dazed and confused but somewhat aware of what all the racket was about, I hoped outta bed and threw on some clothes.

On the way out the bedroom door, the youngest man-child in the family was apologizing for having set off the fire alarms (the whole house is wired so when one goes off, they all go off). He was making corn dogs in the middle of the night, to be precise that would be of the 12:30ish AM variety of the middle of the night.

So, after waving a pillow profusely over my head at the fire alarm so that air would move and it would no longer detect smoke, I tossed the pillow on the couch and gave him a rather irritated look.

So, what they hell?

What is with teens and late teens staying up all hours of the night and causing the old people in the house to lose sleep because they make so much racket? Talking to friends, playing video games, making food, dropping things, knocking stuff over, and everything else that you can think of that makes noise…all to our dissatisfaction and loss of sleep. Can’t you just be like “normal” people and go to bed at a civilized hour?

Yeah, yeah, it’s probably our fault some how.

I’ll tell you what though, nothing is more frustrating that waking up to the fire alarm because the non-adults can’t monitor their food while everyone else is sleeping.

Good night.

Surprising

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There are some fruits that I can’t stand. Many of them I developed an aversion to when I was younger and have avoided them ever since. It’s probably because of texture or because of flavor, but I decided way back when that I didn’t like them and have maintained that stance since then.

Yesterday, I was surprised. I had a grapefruit I actually liked. Normally the fruit is kinda nasty to me, so the fact that I even tried it was surprising.

Interestingly, I liked it enough to try it again today and I still liked it.

Now, this is probably an anomaly since they are so sweet. I don’t know exactly the variety, but they look like a traditional pink grapefruit. I have no idea why it is so sweet, but the grapefruit I pulled off the tree in my parents’ yard in Palm Springs is just downright tasty. I have now decided that I would eat at least a half of grapefruit every morning while I am here. It is almost like candy…except supposedly better for me.

I doubt this will change my outlook on them when I return home though. I will probably avoid them like before.

But for a short time, I am going to enjoy the surprising treat.

Thanksgiving and sex

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Got your attention? Keep reading, this is gonna be good.

Is fear going to keep you from doing the things you want, seeing the people you want, celebrating the way you want?

The governor has, in all his infinite wisdom (*hack, cough, hack*) along with his fear-mongering lackeys, has advised that you keep your Thanksgiving celebration small. As in, your immediate household. And, if you should gather with more people, it can’t be more than 10 and it should be outdoors.

WTF? We live in the Northwest, land of the ever falling rain and it isn’t exactly tropical temps up here. Yeah, like people are gonna do that…and if you’re afraid, then do it.

But, I say we treat Thanksgiving like we do sex.

Sex is between consenting adults, (typically) behind closed doors or inside the walls of your residence. It’s nobody’s business but theirs, right? People usually take the precautions they think necessary when engaging in such activities and they have a good time doing it. If we are to ignore what goes on behind closed doors because it is the right and choice of consenting adults (even if it is a group, if that’s your thing…) then people can’t say anything about it.

As such, Thanksgiving this year should be treated just like sex.

Yes, it’s a group activity, but all the adults (and their minions) present have consented and acknowledged the risk of gathering behind closed doors. What happens with a turkey, mashed potatoes, yams, cranberry sauce, and whatever other foods you like is nobody’s business but your own. How many people you have together is nobody’s business but your own. How much alcohol you have to consume to be able to stand your crazy uncle, or your in-laws, or the political conversations that will inevitably start, is nobody’s business but yours. If you take precautions to protect yourselves, or others, that’s nobody’s business but your own. The point is, you get to choose, not the government.

So, celebrate. Give thanks and be thankful.

**I will not post tomorrow as I will be gathering against the advice of the government and trying to endure the people who will invade space, my peace, and my quiet for an undetermined amount of time. Happy Thanksgiving to all!**

Spinning

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Feeling a little dizzy today. Not sure what is going on.

Maybe I haven’t had enough water.

Maybe I have had too much screen time.

Maybe I just need more rest.

I haven’t been feeling bad, so this is a little outta the blue. Felt fine yesterday, though I didnt’ post anything (did you miss me?). Had a decent weekend and don’t feel any different that usual, except for the slight dizziness.

Perhaps a I need a little something in the stomach…though I honestly could stand to lock the fridge and cabinets for a week or five. Wouldn’t hurt me to wire the jaw shut, if you know what I mean.

So, I sit here working and wonder if the words on the screen will go back in order (albeit, briefly) so I can read them and help the next client.

Anyone else found themselves on a perpetual merry-go-round lately?