Glitter

Maybe this is a weird topic, maybe it isn’t. I don’t have a lot to say about it. I may have even talked about it already on the ol’ blog, but I was reminded again this weekend…

I hate it. With passion.

It is evil.

If ever there was someone who deserved to be drawn and quartered, it would be the inventor of glitter. I don’t even have to look up who invented it because I don’t care. 1000 cursed deaths upon whomever it is.

I can’t even continue writing this post because it upsets me so much.

I’ll be back tomorrow with something less traumatizing. I apologize if this triggered something for you.

 

Stolen retirement?

Retired

People who aren’t relatives, but look like their retired. Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

This morning’s irritation doesn’t really have anything to do with me, so much as it has to relatives. Well, this isn’t really an irritation for just this morning. This is an ongoing irritation that flairs of on a regular basis, especially when I feel like someone is being taken advantage of.

I have some family members who are generous people. They like to help others.

I have some family members who make poor choices and like to ask for help when things get tough.

As you can see, this combination of two types of family members makes for some behavior enabling and as a result, I don’t think anyone in the situation wins.

The biggest problem here, as I see it, is that the family members who think they are being generous and helpful are the grandparents of said family members who can’t seem to get their adult life and behavior figured out. Sure, the grandparents are free to spend their money as they see fit. They are adults and they are still of sound mind and body (at least as far as any of us are).

However, the issue I have is the frequency with which the grandchildren take advantage of their grandparents’ generosity. Less than six months ago, one of the grandchildren got a huge chunk of money (to the tune of about $3500) so they could move their family into a different rental house, one that was really beyond their means. Now that same grandchild is in need of a more fuel efficient vehicle (rental house is too far from job) and they don’t have the money for that either…and so an offer from the grandparents is on the table again…

I just can’t help but wonder if the grandparents are being robbed of their “golden years”? They live within their means and they obviously know how to manage their money, but we are often told they live meagerly and they can’t afford this or that, or they can’t get a better car for themselves, or they don’t go to doctor because they don’t think they can afford it. It’s stuff like that. Is that really how they should be living in retirement?

As the parent (step-parent/SNL, at that), when is it appropriate to say “Enough is enough” or to “Stop” or to “Step back”? Or, do I just stay out of it and let it go…none of my business kind of thing?

 

Price gouging?

auditorium chairs comfortable concert

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

What do you guys thing? Could this instance be considered price gouging or just market demand?

New Years Eve plans weren’t set in stone yet, so going to the movie theater was determined to be a good idea. Killing a few hours at a movie would help get the evening along and help me make it to the new year (instead of being an old, grumpy person – er, like every other day).

Anyway, we only have one movie theater that is local so to the AMC we went. During the ticket purchasing process it was discovered that the normally $5+ tickets at the theater were just the normal price of $11+. Huh? What’s going on here? Discount Tuesday has been a thing for years and this last year has been no different, so why suddenly are prices not the normally discounted price?

Come to find out, because both Christmas Eve and New Years Eve are the night before a holiday, the theater suspended the special price to take advantage of the fact that maybe more people would want to go see movies. Really? They’re going to jack the normally low price up for two days just so they can take advantage of their customers?

To me, it smacks of “price gouging,” because it is taking advantage of an abnormal situation to make more money. The official definition doesn’t say anything about a “state of emergency” or “disaster,” but if you look at legal definitions it tends to lean in that direction.

I guess it probably isn’t really price gouging, but it feels really shady when you are standing in line to buy tickets with your kids and what would have been a $25 night at the movies turns into $60 (before you even buy popcorn or snacks) because you have no choice at that point. I watched family after family be surprised by the unique “price adjustment” and the unspoken visual debate between husband and wife take place via their eyes. There were some who just turned around and left, but not very many. As parents, it’s hard to turn around and leave when you have all those eyes staring at you in expectation. So, they break the budget to make it happen.

Real shady, AMC. Real shady.

Missing it

person s playing chess

Photo by JESHOOTS.com on Pexels.com

Today I am missing it.

Today is the first day of Christmas break for students (at least for most schools) in my area. They are enjoying the day, I am sure, by not doing anything. I even have a teen who hasn’t seen the light of day yet because the bedroom door hasn’t cracked an inch and likely won’t for a couple more hours.

Today I am missing the fact that as I teacher I would not be working today. Usually the first couple days of Christmas break was an ACTUAL break for me. I usually finished up shopping and generally relaxed and spent time with the kids.

Instead, I am at work today…and there really isn’t much going on since my job is to support school personnel with their software…and they are all (or nearly all) on break…not working…and I am trying to find things to stay busy…but really all I want to do is not be at work…

Today I am missing it.

Belly up

white vehicle in road close up photography

Photo by Liza Lova on Pexels.com

When things go belly up, especially a car, it makes for a really unpleasant rush to make a decision.

We, meaning my X and I and my teen daughter, purchased a used car back in June. We knew it wasn’t a top notch used car, but we figured it would get us a year (hopefully two) before it would need to be replaced. Since I just talked about making decisions with the X a few days ago, you can imagine that the process of finding and deciding on a car the first time was a chore, to say the least.

Well, now the car has gone belly up and the repairs (at least by the first estimate) appear to be more than the car is worth. I, nor her step-dad, are mechanically inclined when it comes to engines so doing a repair ourselves isn’t really an option. I have friends that could possibly do the work, but since the car is 30 miles from my home that isn’t exactly a “Hey, can you pop over and do some repairs?” kind of situation.

So, we…are back to trying to figure out options. Besides high school, my daughter has a part-time job and is also doing running start (college while still in high school), so the need for her transportation is kinda high as public transit isn’t the greatest or most efficient (or safe?) in the area where she lives. Thus, the options are few.

Ugh! Why are children so expensive….?

X factor

yellow and pink lighted x decor

Photo by Ricardo Esquivel on Pexels.com

When you are divorced and have had a child (or children), there is always the “X factor” to consider.

It’s sad to say, but as fathers we very typically get the shaft when it comes to co-parenting the children after a divorce. There is honestly no logical reasoning behind this precedent other than the mother is nearly always seen as “the fittest parent” in these situations, regardless of the circumstances. Even when you can demonstrate, with evidence, that as a father you would be a better choice for the child’s custodial parent it is a costly uphill battle that has no guaranteed outcome.

As I was preparing the visitation calendar for 2020 for my teen daughter, it just brought back all the times where I have had to consider the X factor over the last 14 years. We divorced when she was under two so I have had a lot of considering to do, and still have a little while longer to deal with it. It has been a challenge over the years.

How will the X respond to this? What will the X do now? Is there a way to get the X to be reasonable? How crazy is my X, really? I can’t believe the X responded the way she did. Why does the X have to make everything about herself? Why does the X always make this more challenging than it needs to be? How is the X gonna take this? How can I do this so it doesn’t piss the X off? Now what does the X want? 

If you are a divorced father with children, you likely know all too well what I mean. Or, maybe you are even a mother with a crazy X, you know too. Really this post isn’t so much about fathers (though that is my experience) but about the fact that while raising children as divorced parents you are always having to consider the X factor. Everything you do seems to revolve around the other person even though you aren’t with that person every day.

I am thankful that it has gotten a little better since my daughter is now older and can transport herself, but as I was still working on a visitation calendar (which really hasn’t been followed since my daughter is old enough to have a job now) that I still have to consider the X factor when it comes to my daughter. Just a couple more years that I am REQUIRED to consider the X…then it will only have to be during major life events for my daughter. That will be a whole new chapter of X factor to deal with.

Can anyone else relate to this?

Babies

pexels-photo-987585.jpeg

Photo by freestocks.org on Pexels.com

Babies are ugly.

There I said it.

Nearly all, and I do mean all, babies are ugly. There really is nothing cute about them.

No, I don’t want to see pictures of your baby. No, I don’t want to see pictures of your new grand-baby. No, I don’t wanna see pictures of any baby.

People, listen, no one really wants to see anything about a baby unless they ask you directly to see pictures of the baby. Otherwise, you are just annoying people needlessly with your gushing about a baby no one cares about but you.

Seriously.

I don’t want to read a blog about your babies. I don’t want to see video clips about your babies. I don’t want so hear stories about your babies.

Just knock it off already.