Monday, February 28, 2011

Still Jumping Through Hoops

Sometimes I wonder if this monkey with a typewriter can type out War and Peace before I am able to actually finish jumping through all these hoops to get my new Verizon phone actually initialized, able to receive calls, and yes...someday get my well deserved discount.
Today the phone arrived. Joy. Call the number to set it up and suddenly I am bounced around for over an hour like the ugly girl at a speed dating event...mindlessly telling each new customer service agent my story, hearing excuses as to why I had to be bounced to yet someone else... then the dreaded Purgatory of HOLD with the endless loop tape of sales pitches...
I even missed HOUSE. And it was a new episode. Chrissakes.
How did this evening end? No kiss good night, that's for sure. Just call back tomorrow between 9 and 7 . Will Persistence pay off?Will my phone ever work? Will I get my old number? Will I get that ever elusive discount? Stay tuned. I'm not letting the monkey win this one.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

One Ringy Dingy...

For anyone following the trials and tribulations of me getting a better phone and advancing confidently into the future of communications, today's update is rather promising.
Travelling in a truck toward my house as I write is my new free phone. In another truck heading to a big box store inevitably to me is my brand new I-Pod. All accomplished online. The only glitch in all this is Verizon, again. I didn't get my discount.... yet. I still have to jump through some hoops. But it is my fervent hope, like my future relationship of my dreams with Colin Firth, that Verizon and I will sail through the bumpy "get to know each other"phase and we will discover a new world together based on our mutual love and respect.

The King and I....

I realize there is a long line, but put me in the British "queue" of fans waiting for Colin Firth to sweep me in his arms and take me to some far off place never to be seen again. Needless to say I hope he wins big tonight.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Phones and Data and Pictures...Part II

Does this have to be so hard? I went to a Verizon reseller type store and things were a hassle there to get what I wanted. I'll just be nice and say I couldn't get to an agreement in a reasonable amount of time to actually get what I wanted and get out.
Getting Verizon service, plus the phone I want, plus the discount I want and accomplishing it on line has proven to be a disaster. Too much time spent in my life trying to second guess the menus
on the web site, futzing with options, not being able to click where I need to click, a web chat
disaster that ended abruptly after a half hour of hassles, and I just "x"ed out and quit for the night.
I haven't given up though. I want Verizon service. I just need the stars to line up right or something for me to actually get what I want. That said, if the stars had lined up last night I would have an I-phone today. But since they didn't, I no longer want an I-phone and am instead getting an I-pod at Walmart and settling for a free or cheap phone. This way I get I get a phone but not both together, and a heck of a lot cheaper.
Those who were rooting for me to get a Droid...(you know who you are,) well, it was close. But
it's just too big. I don't want to lug it around.
Unless the stars line up differently tomorrow. But I already ordered a docking station. So I'm on my way out of the 90's.
(no, that's not the phone I want above. Just a joke. But I like it though.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Quick Hits Today...

Just "observations." No indepth news watching or reading today. A list of things that seeped into my world and my reaction to them:
Kid Won't Wrestle Girl- Religious reasons my butt. He's afraid she would win and he would never live it down. Period.
Rahm Wins- May the sexiest man win. Can he dress well or what?
John Wayne Bobbitt- Who cares? Loser guy plus 20 years.
Wisconsin Situation- I worked in the private sector for a million years before I was able to join a union. The first generation of people depending only on 401k's is doomed. Now I'm living on the cusp of a potentially sustainable lifestyle. Middle class people are not the problem with this country. The people who try to paint that picture have their own agenda. I did read Reg's column today...and he makes a good point:

In Wisconsin, Gov. Scott Walker's idea of history is apparently the presidency of Ronald Reagan and the idea that if you get tough with the union movement and also cut taxes, then deficits will disappear -- except in Reagan's case, they didn't.

Chuck E.'s in Love

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Just Too Much to be Stressed About

Okay, it's time to draw the line. I have to limit my stress somewhere, so in the name of peace and tranquility and running out of stomach pills, I see an immediate need to start cutting back on the news.
It's beyond ridiculous. How can people not be affected seeing the soon to be all out civil war in Libya, the uncertainty in the rest of the mideast, the endless drumbeat of stories about rising
gas prices, the New Zealand earthquake, the Phillippines volcano... and the "feel good" story at the end of the news was actually a study on whether cell phone use causes cancer.
Maybe my mom has the right idea immersing herself in TV Land. It's just too much.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Sunday Morning Muse, February 20, 2011

The best years of your life are the ones in which you decide your problems are your own. You do not blame them on your mother, the ecology, or the president. You realize that you control your own destiny.--Albert Ellis


The cat and I wait for the sunrise this peaceful Sunday, with the second cup of coffee by my side. I'm thinking about the marches going on in cities in the mideast and how each day brings new hope and also new tensions. The daily lives of those people are in total upheaval. Their future so unclear. Lots of worry and uncertainty. Danger. My advice to them: Go after your dreams. Promote peace and dignity and democracy for all and by all means, get educated and also do everything you can for women's rights.
Meanwhile the endless news cycle here is focused on our nation being broke. Day after day it's the same thing. How many times have I seen the orange face who leads the Congress telling us.... We are broke. That the poor have to pay, the poor have to receive fewer services, teachers are the problem, unions are the problem, education has to be cut etc. -
Oh really? It's like Aunt Millie used to say. The poor stay poor and the rich get richer. That's the way the mop flops.
Aunt Millie didn't trust the fatcats much. She wouldn't have understood the derivatives and the mortgage scheme and all the corruption in our banking system, but she did understand the need to educate our children. And our country is sadly falling behind other countries, who "get it."
Mother Teresa once said she would not go to an anti-war protest, but she would go to a peace rally. It's all in how you look at things. Instead of all this energy expended with blame, what if we turned on the news and instead saw Congressmen and women joining together to actually solve problems rather than pick and choose scapegoats and give dramatic speeches against abortion or public televison. Is this the model of democracy we want to show the world?

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

If the Phone Doesn't Ring, It's Me

I-phones and Droids and normal boring flip phones. I have to make a decision soon. One of my few faults in life is that I tend to over-analyze things. Sometimes, as in this case, I start looking at the simple act of choosing a phone and hence a phone "plan" with an eye toward some overall bigger meaning. Like how I "plan" to use the phone makes some grand statement about me.
Like, am I going to get a cheap plan and let new technology pass me by? Continue my downhill slide into techno-indifference? Possibly. If I stay with my phone is just a phone philosophy, foregoing the playthings and apps that cost a lot of money and are real time wasters, is this really my way of remaining true to my vow of a simpler way of life?
Or should I plunge in? Learn to live in the new age. Get out of the 90's. Text people instead of talk to them. By a docking thing and play music out of my phone. Why? Because that is what people do.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Man Versus Machine

I know I'm a geek. Looking forward to watching a computer compete against two human beings on Jeopardy Monday night.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Back on the Corner

Love this...Great photos. I'm looking for ideas.... I may end up back on the corner with the old guitar myself someday. Love the next to the last photo with the tin cup mounted to the neck of the instrument.

Why Must I Always Explain...

Probably one of my top 10 favorite songs ever. Decent version of in Poland.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Valentine's Weekend

Where is the love? My unofficial survey of guys who pass by me throughout the day reveals that few if any are doing anything special for Valentine's Day. Even though I ask around every year, I can remember only one man in recent memory say that he had plans for a nice dinner out (with his wife I assume) and probably some chocolate covered strawberries.

Creative one, there. Oh well, he's trying.
My sweetest Valentine memory was clear back in college. I had just started dating a guy, not even a few weeks into the relationship, and even though he wasn't obligated, and I didn't expect anything (for the above reason, and being that he was admittedly broke,) he made me a Valentine and left it in my mailbox. I remember that all these years, so he must have made an impression.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Dalai Lama Said..

"If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion."

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Phones and Data and Pictures, Oh My

I don't text, I don't Twitter,I don't surf the net or send photos through it. My current phone is like four years old, thus it is a dinosaur, something Edison could have used to get ahold of Watson in the other room.

All that will change next month when the shackles and chains come off and I am out of my Sprint Contract with all it's dead zones and frustrations, and onto a hopefully better telephone experience.
The world is mine. Free to choose. Free.

Freedom has it's price for sure. Not sure if I want to spring for all the bells and whistles. Not sure if I'll ever really want to send tweets, though it would come handy in a revolution.
Time to start shopping around.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Snow in San Anselmo- Van Morrison

Now, this is what I'm talking about. Some old Van Morrison. This song fit my mood perfectly today. In the background soft and low...

Steal My Heart Away

Looks like Van is back up on YouTube. I hope people upload some of his old stuff again.
It just steals my heart away.

Friday, February 4, 2011

A Poke at the Pope

Thou shalt not transplant pope livers, nor eat them with fava beans and a fine Chianti.- 11th Commandment

In strange but true religious news, the Pope, though an advocate for organ transplantation, will not be donating his organs any time soon. The pope's organs belong to the church. All of them? All of them.
On the bright side, on your next trip to Italy be sure and have a look at the Pope Pancreas relic collection in the church of Saints Anastasio and Vncent near the Trevi Fountain in Rome.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

A Crack in the Foundation

Taken on a lovely day in May 2010. This was part of the foundation of an old house located on the overgrown remains of a former street car line. I love that the property owner tore down the house but paid homage to it by leaving behind a small reminder for future generations to see.

Groundhog.... It had to be Spring

I think the poor creature feared for his life if he proclaimed six more weeks of this crap.

Rolling Pin and Hot Water

Watching the news coverage on NBC tonight in Egypt was compelling television. A big change from last night's prance through the square, cameras rolling, reporting on tea being made and served in the streets, and civilians policing themselves for weapons not permitted on the streets.
Today was violence and tear gas. Mobs and rocks. A struggle amidst the uprising.
But what brought it all home to me was at the tail end of the newscast. A phone only of a 76 year old American woman living in an apartment alone in the Square. No family. She was terrified that men tried to bust open her door, but she was not leaving. She said she has a rolling pin and hot water and a sharp knife.
I feel sad for that poor woman and all those people living over there.