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I haven’t been writing as much lately, as I see the world crumbling around me – I do say around me, as I am still floating with my head slightly above water. My problem is, I always strive to know what is actually happening, not what would I like to think is happening right now. Then, as soon as I lock onto what I think is the truth of current events, my mind starts projecting the future.

This is a really bad thing to do. Of course, I have only lived my life, so I can’t really say if there has ever been a time when studying current events and then making projections as to what the future will be was a happy thing to do. I like to think there was. Maybe in some primitive (primitive to us technological addicts) society where people had plenty to eat year-round and were at peace with their neighboring tribes for as long as they could remember. To a person living in such a community it might seem that things would go on forever like that.

I’d like to think so.

All we ever studied in my history classes was who went to war with who, how many were killed, memorize the dates and names of the battles and generals and yada, yada. I grew up during the Vietnam war; my dad attended the 2nd world war, which was followed by the Korean war, and now we are in the unending Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

I am aware of the not-very-safe nuclear reactors all over the world, and Fukushima of course; not to mention the thousands of nuclear warheads on our missles.

So, anyway, if you haven’t stopped reading yet and gone of for a dose of qualudes, or whatever the current drug is that is supposed to make us believe that everything is OK, I don’t really know what to say.

What I do to deal with the down side of reality is to take good care of myself physically and mentally. I know, it sounds hard to believe, but its true. I intersperse books on the environment and politics with escapist fiction. Right now I’m reading a series by author Lauren Haney on ancient Egypt, with the main character a policeman who solves murders during the time of the pharoahs. Try them, they’re great fun.

Eclipse Bookstore, Bellingham, WA

Eclipse Bookstore, Bellingham, WA

A Place of Darkness

A Place of Darkness by Lauren Haney

Copied this from Amazon.com.

Amazon is where I get my books when I’m not buying them from the local used book store here in Bellingham, Eclipse Bookstore (see photo above).

Well, that’s about it for now. Let me know what you are thinking – especially about the future. And don’t write if you think god is going to solve all our problems, because I’ve been down that road and it isn’t working for me.

 

Hamster report

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Do you feel like road kill some days? Like events are running over you and you cannot control much and don’t know where the next “whack” is coming from?   Earthquakes, floods, fires, droughts, mass murderers, every day it seems something horrific is happening.

Sunrise

Sunrise

That is the source of my roadkill Friday reports. Yes, I feel very bad about all the fellow creatures on this earth that we flatten and send to the next life with our vehicles.

I will borrow some thoughts from another blog, and combine them with my own ideas. (tinybuddha.com/blog/) 

“Every experience is a life lesson. You will be wiser, emotionally stronger, and perhaps have some newfound knowledge or skill in an area you knew nothing about before.”

“You and your family used to eat out all the time. But now, loss of a job means you no longer can afford to do that. At times you’re not sure how you can even afford to make a meal at home. Out of necessity you get creative. You seek out recipes that are most economical, invent a few of your own. You discover a passion for cooking.”

“You were considering going back to school for retraining—but had no idea what you would study. Maybe now you do. Some of the most successful entrepreneurs achieved their status from having to deal with a situation they had no control over.”

I’ve been through trauma and dealt with it. Yes, it made me grow – such experiences seem to put one in the position of either growing or sinking into self-destructive behavior which is related to suicide.  I chose to grow. I used to think that such experiences leave one with psychic scars that are forever sensitive, rather than making us stronger, but I am re-thinking that. 

I like this comment from “Little Buddha”: 

“As you work through an earthshaking event, give yourself credit for every step forward. By acknowledging your achievements no matter how small, you regain trust in your ability to fix what you didn’t break. You empower yourself to take the next step. Besides, the situation is beating you up enough—don’t help it!”

Enough of that, the count this past week:

  • Birds: 5
  • Mouse: 1
  • Squirrel: 1
  • Unidentified: 3
  • Opossum: 3

On a brighter note, this week I took a 17 mile bike (bicycle) ride out in the county and spotted a live coyote, up pretty close, and have seen quite a few mom deer with 1 or 2 spotted offspring; several wild rabbits.

Hamster report

Are these two topics related? Only in my fevered brain . . .

Whatcom county count, by one person:

  • Birds – 3 (small – might have been Robins, seemed about the right size)
  • Squirrels – 3
  • Mice? – 1 (very small and furry)
  • Opossums – 1

Speaking of dead stuff, I started reading Eaarth, by McKibbens, this week. I’m only about 10 pages into the book and I’m already creeped out, and I know most of this stuff. I’ve been reading about climate change for about 5 years now. But having it all laid out in one book and throw in some info I did not know, and YIKES!

What really pisses me off, on a very deep personal level, is it looks like it will all come down when I’m too old to run. I somehow have this feeling that this is all a disaster of planetary proportions, concocted by the gods just to make my life a personal hell.

I’m sorry about that, people; it’s kind of like when you leave the house in the morning and forget your umbrella or raincoat. That day, of course, it rains like hell, and you just know  it is all your fault. If you had brought that raincoat or umbrella, it would not have rained.

See how it works?

Sorry, I do not mean to belittle the fact that we all are going to die from what is happening to the earth (mostly our fault), but what can you do when disaster strikes you in the face, but laugh. Not that lighthearted laugh, but that ironic, what can you do about it but either laugh or cry kind of laugh.

“Remember the past, plan for the future, but live for today, because yesterday is gone and tomorrow may never come.” – Unknown 

“A taste for irony has kept more hearts from breaking than a sense of humor, for it takes irony to appreciate the joke which is on oneself.”Jessamyn West

“Irony is a clear consciousness of an eternal agility, of the infinitely abundant chaos.”Karl Wilhelm Friedrich Schlegel
 
Sometimes I feel like a figment of my own imagination” – Lilly Tomlin
 
And my personal favorite:
“Reality is a crutch for people who can’t handle drugs.” – Lilly Tomlin
 
Hamster report from the edge
  
 
2012 end of the world
National geographic graphic of end of the world

For those of us who are still employed, however temporarily that may be, and are working the traditional Mon –  Friday work week –  gosh, there are so many qualifications to a sentence in which I am trying to refer to employment – oh, frack, I’m getting lost here.

Um, yes, I remember –  Wednesday is the day we used to refer to as “hump day” – yeah!!! I finally got to it. Hump day – oh, get you heads out of the gutter – it is the middle of the work week, the top of the hill, it’s all downhill to Friday! Got it? Good.

Now, every day is “Do I sill have a job day?, and how much will unemployment pay if I get laid off today?  Personally, with all the hype about the end of the world due to some ancient Mayan calendar implying the world will end in 2012 (is that January 2012 or December 2012?), I’ve kind of thinking it might be a good thing if it did. End I mean.

Then I wouldn’t have to worry about whether I have a job, whether I can afford to go to the doctor, do I have enough food stored in the closet if there is an earthquake, etc., etc., etc. . . .

Enough of that. On a personal note, my blood sugar is under control with the diet the naturopath recommended, and I’m back at the gym, and out on the hiking trails. My finger is still in a splint, but it feels better and seems to be well on the mend.

I’m looking forward to my planned backpacking trips this summer, and I guess that’s it.

Oh, I LOVE this part of the world – we do not have huge forest fires (too much rain on this side of the mountains), no hurricanes, tornadoes, only local flooding (don’t buy a house in a floodplain – how many times do I have to tell you there is a reason they call those flat, low elevation areas next to rivers FLOODplains), and my personal, favorite – no poisonous snakes.

Hamster report. (Can I hibernate thru the end of the world, please? Or just thru the next 20 years, whichever comes first?) Where’s the beer? Remember, reality is for those whom cannot handle drugs, you know, people like me.

OK, I’m out.

homeless woman

homeless woman

Do you think that if you got laid off tomorrow you could get a job that pays you enough to live on before your unemployment runs out? Really? Do you think that people who aren’t able to get a good paying replacement job are just not trying? Really?

Random thoughts . . .

I’m frustrated, not able to do much since I injured my finger. I read, watch DVD’s on my TV ( I don’t have cable or antennae/ converter box. I putter some in my basement, doing what I can with one finger sticking straight out and swathed with a splint. 

So I read stuff on the internet and try not to feel sorry for myself; there are no hurricanes, tornadoes, major floods or fires here (it rains too much for fires to last very long, and it is so hilly the water runs off into Puget Sound.

We do get some local flooding, and people who are foolish enough to build their homes on hillsides (for the views) sometimes slide off, and there has occasionally been loss of life if they happen to be in the house when this happens, or be foolish enough to be living in the house at the bottom of the hill.

Back to the point of this article:

So I was reading this article on homelessness. If it were not for my family coming to my rescue, this could have been me.   I do have a job, but I wonder from day-to-day how long it will last. The economy is bad, and we aren’t getting enough home remodeling jobs to keep the 3 employees working full-time. My pay is less than half what I used to get as a mechanical engineer.

Think about it. It could be you, and you may be next. Be kind to the homeless.

Hamster report

I’m a reasonably intelligent person, and in fact, over the 60 years of my life it has become clear that I have way more than the usual amount of what is called common sense.  Yet I find myself at my 60th year, back in school because I can’t get a job that pays enough to live on.  (You know, enough money to pay for dental bills and that occasional doctor visit with lab tests).  Yes, I have a degree – BSME. 

I often do not know what it is people seem to want that I do not have.  For instance, today I got on WordPress, and as usual I take a look at the blogs they put right up front when you get on the WordPress website, I think its called “Freshly Pressed”.  Right off the bat, 3/4 ths of them are boring as hell, and of the rest, some are pretty good, but not all that interesting.

Often there are some annoyingly cheery blogs that are so out of touch with reality they should be on drugs.  Maybe they are, and thats why they are so freakin’ happy.

Cat & Kitten wrestling

Cats

So, I just did a preview of this blog and wordpress dumped everything I’d written into the caption below the cat picture.  I KNOW that is not where I put it.  Anyone else have this problem?  It’s happened to me before. 
I’ll add a couple of the quotes and jokes I had, but I don’t have time to re-do everything I’d written. 
“If you don’t lean to laugh at troubles, yhou won’t have anyting to laugh at when you grow old” – James A. Garfield (Ain’t that the truth!)
“Age does not diminish the extreme disappointment of having a scoop of ice cream fall from the cone.” – Jim Fiebig
“At age 20, we worry about what others think of us. At age 40, we don’t care what they think of us. At 60, we discover they haven’t been thinking abut us at all.” – Jock Falkson (Hmmm – maybe so).
Ok, the hamster’s gotta go do some work now. Stop worrying about your age, and for cryin’ out loud, don’t spend any more money on trying to look younger.  You are what you are.  Spend your money on food, or better yet, send some to me.

Did I ever get into how much I dislike change?  Every time a computer program gets “upgraded” it takes time to learn what the hell they did to it.  It never works better, just different.  This sucks time from your life that could have been spent doing something constructive, or even taking a nap, which is more constructive than re-learning something you already knew how to do.

Another change is your income level.  Has it gone up?  For most of us, it has gone down. Ergo, change sucks.  Do you know how to live on this new income level?  Unless you were a poor student putting yourself through college at some point in your life (usually when you were young, but for some of us, repeated at later ages), you may not know how to live on nothing.  That sucks big time, especially if you still have kids dependant on you.

Did you come down with some health issue later in life that required you to change totally the way you eat?  Like, maybe making you pay close attention to EVERYTHING you eat?  This sucks big time also.  Though not so much if you were already changing the way you eat and don’t mind eating healthier.  Still, it was much nicer to just eat what you felt like without having to think about it.  I personally do not like taking an hour to buy groceries because I have to stand there and try to read the stupid ingredientls list on EVERYTHING I buy.  I should bring a magnifying glass.

How about if your career that you spent thousands of dollars going to college to learn no longer has any jobs for you?  That sucks big time also.  Want to change careers when you are 60?  Good luck with that.  I’m working on that.  I hope I can get someone to hire me when I graduate at 65.  In any case, maybe I can stave off alzhiemers because I’m learning new stuff until I’m really old.  Old, not odd. Damn this spell check thing.

change sucks for the hamster, she soldiers on

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