Tuesday, December 28, 2004

I'm going home...

I'm heading out for a couple of days. I should have been gone some time ago, but I overslept.

Don't let anything exciting happen in KC while I'm gone!

Monday, December 27, 2004

A Visit with Scooter

Andra and I drove up to Brookfield on Thursday, December 23rd, to finally visit Scott's grave. The fact it's been almost ten years since I heard about his death and still this is the first time I've gone is still sorta weighing heavily on my conscience.

It was a nice trip up. Andra and I talked about many varied topics: people from college, how life as someone who is almost 40 is, horrible/wonderful things that happened in college, horrible/wonderful things that happened after college, how we came to be the people we are, lots of conversation about Scott (a.k.a. Scooter).

Brookfield kinda took us by surprise, so we didn't even realize we'd passed TT (which is the road the graveyard is just past). We drove all the way through Brookfield on 36 highway looking for TT, and had to turn around. We went to one graveyard we'd spotted, but it was "the other" graveyard in Brookfied, not the one we wanted.

We stopped at a gas station to get directions, and still managed to drive by the graveyard "exit" (it's really just a right turn that sneaks up on you).

I am still trying to decide if it was appropriate that it was so cold that day. I mean, if the world felt to Scooter the way I felt that day... well, I'll just stop at "it was too cold" and leave it at that.

Except to add that the ground was actually warm, which makes where I was going with that last bit even ickier. But the ground was warm. We'd both gotten down to brush away dirt and dead grass that had gotten on his grave and I noticed the ground felt warm, so I stayed there while we had our visit.

As you may notice from the picture above, his birthdate was not on the stone. This bothered me for some reason, and Andra (who has a background in the whole "history and research" area), said it would be easy to get his Death Certificate from City Hall. We'd just need a couple of bucks. So after playing Scott some music and just generally chatting about things, we went to City Hall.

Easier said than done, however. They have a lovely City Square/Park in Brookfield, and City Hall isn't on it. The two people we stopped to ask weren't able to help us. Andra finally had to go into a business and ask them. We got to City Hall, but it closed at noon that day, and wouldn't be open again until after Christmas.

Andra had the idea of going to the funeral home that handled his funeral (she had done a sort of pre-visit research in order to learn where Scott was buried... see, she's the queen of research). She said they would have a record there. I hummed and hawed and she said, "Well, we're here now..." so I went. But I told her she'd have to do all the talking because I didn't know what to ask for.

And that's the story of how I learned Scott's birthday again. I say "again" because I'm sure I knew it at one point, even if it was just whenever his birthday came around while we were in college.

Anyway, back to the site: Andra had heard from the guy at the funeral home that Scott's mom had died recently. We thought he meant his birth mother, but it was actually the woman who raised him. That was another sad thing, as Dawn had said (again, almost 10 years ago) that when I visited Scott's grave, I should go see his Grandmother, because she would love to hear from friends of Scott. I guess I got there too late.

Bask in the guilt.

And there is this feeling of guilt that comes with it. We walked into the funeral home and Andra said we were friends of Scott's, and I had to wonder if the people were thinking, "Some friends... where were you during the dark night of his soul?"

Where was I? I know where I was in my life. I'd just left L.A., and was wishing I could get back there, but wanted to go back with money and not live as month-to-month as I had before. I wanted to know what I wanted to do with my life. I keep trying to remember what it was I did for Thanksgiving in 1994. I know I had been in Butler earlier in the month, helping Jason. I assume I was at home. Jordan would have been just a few weeks old. But as Thanksgivings go (granted, I've had a few "stand-out" Thanksgivings), it doesn't stand out at all. I didn't even know it should have stood out until the following summer.

So I don't know where I was. Lost in my life, I guess. I think I'm still there sometimes, and that's no good. But what to do, what do to?

If you're driving east on highway 36 and almost to Brookfield, and you happen to see this UMB sign:

Do me a favor and wave "hi" to Scooter for me. Tell him I miss him and I wish he could write me a letter.

Field vs. Pasture

Tricia read my blog, and has this to add (and opted not to put it as a comment, I guess...):

This is the farm girl talking....... A field is a piece of ground that has been or will be, with the intent, tilled for the purpose of growing a busheled or measurable crop.
A pasture is a piece of ground that is grassy, and may or may not have been sowed withsome type of specific seed, with the intent to graze animals (put out to pasture), or propagate the seed sowed.
The piece of ground you refer to is most likely an overgrown lot, unless it
is the Stewart's land you refer too, and that is a pasture, or at least was when we were kids.
So there you have it, folks. However, it was always referred to as "Opal Palmer's Pasture" (I've since remembered it was referred to as a "pasture"), which makes me wonder if at some point she didn't keep some sort of animals there. I know there was a fence at one end of it, so maybe she did at one point.

Thursday, December 23, 2004

Road Trip

Tomorrow--or later this morning, really--Andra and I are making a road trip up to Brookfield. 9 years and 4 months (or so) after learning of the death of Scott David McKinney (who died a little over 10 years ago), I'm finally going to see his grave.

I have mixed feelings about it. I was over at Bee's tonight. Andra was there with letters Scott and I both wrote to her in the early 90s. Lots of things Scott had written were very... sad, I guess... in retrospect.

I wish he could be alive today, and that Andra and I could be going to visit him in person instead of visting his grave.

I wish whatever made him so sad and willing to leave this world would have been something we could have helped him through... or even known about.

Wish in one hand, spit in the other... see which one gets full faster.

Oh Christmas Tree

And as long as we're on the topic of things my brain are having a hard time dealing with...

What is it about a Christmas tree lit with the individually-blinking lights that makes me so content? I can't explain it. Maybe it's the fact it's my own tree, and when I was a kid I always wanted to have a tree that contained individually-blinking lights only. Now I do. I can sit in front of the tree with all the rest of the lights in the house off and not get bored for hours. I just feel so happy.

Conversely, why is it the saddest thing I've ever seen when I turn off the lights and am heading upstairs and I glance back and see the tree silhouetted in the window, dark and grim?

I'm just wondering. I'm glad to have the relaxing therapy every evening in December... but I feel like Lot's wife every time I glance back at my darkened tree before heading upstairs... only without that whole "oops, I'm a pillar of salt" feeling.

Going home...

I've been meaning to write about this since Ruth and I first went back to work on Dane's NEW AND IMPROVED room, but haven't had a spare moment.

I don't know how much I'll get into it now, but there was something about seeing the town I grew up in so changed, and mostly it didn't seem to be for the better.

I had to wonder if kids still rode their bikes around town in the summer, and if families still knew each other as well as they did when I was a kid. We weren't 8th generation Centerites or anything close, so it's not like my family was known for generations... but still, I had older brothers and an older sister, and it wasn't like we'd arrived a day or two before I was born.

There was this big field or pasture (I'll have to look both words up for clarification on the difference between the two) behind our house. We would go there to fly kites. It was really nothing more than a big grassy area in the middle of the large block we lived on. It's till there. The tree we had a tire swing on is still there.

Lots of things are still there. But there just seems to be so much missing that I have this huge urge to write all about it. It feels like I have to explain to people, like Costello trying to explain to Abbot that what Abbot sees when he looks out the window isn't what Costello saw when he was just looking out that same window a short time ago. Only on a much larger scale.

Anyway, I just wanted to get that out there. The passing of time is an awful thing at times. I think I might have to come out against it.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

Okay, where did those 3 months go?

Wow... time has slipped by me. Again.

Well, I wanted to post this deep, introspective piece about going home again when I went back home back in... September or October or so... but that didn't happen. Maybe I'll try to piece it together another time.

I do, however, have a deep, introspective piece to throw in about my Christmas tree. I'll try to do that after I update my home page for December... and I hope to do that on Saturday.

Keep reading my not-a-blog, all two of you!

Saturday, September 11, 2004

Two Funerals an Open House... and Some Bowling... and Some Singing

This was a busy week. I'm sure that's why whatever this sinus/congestion crud is that won't leave my system felt welcome to stay.

I had my first chorus rehearsal this week. The word is "OVERWHELMED". Lots of music to memorize... but then again, memorizing music is easier than memorizing lines, so I guess I can take some of the "whelm" away. Met lots of nice people, and a couple of people I've... um... met before. Always fun.

After-school activities started this week, so Tuesday and Thursday I got to stay after school... and on Thursday I was there until 7:30-ish for Open House...

But wait, there's more!

Right after Open House the team from last year went to a funeral home for a visitation. One of last year's students had a mother who was fighting cancer. They thought things had turned around, I guess, but then they hadn't after all.

I would say that 13/14 is too young to lose your mother, but really, when is it a walk in the park to lose your mother?

Still I felt for the girl. She seemed to be holding up okay, but I think part of that is some strange cultural leftovers where we expect much wailing and gnashing of teeth or something. So when you see a total lack of wailing and very little teeth-gnashing, you think, "Wow, they're holding up great."

So that was my Thursday. Then on Friday and went to the visitation and part of the funeral for Alice's grandson, who was one week away from making it into this world when he passed on to the next. In retrospect, I wish I would have just taken the afternoon off. Somehow I got it in my head the funeral was at 11:00, and I figured I could make that on my planning time and be back to school in time for the first class after plan time. It started closer to 11:30, so I had to leave shortly after things started.

Luckily for me this sinus/congestion/sore throat thing was making my throat all "hey-you-need-to-cough-y", so it made for a sensible reason to get up and leave the room.

The parents seemed to be holding up okay... again with the whole, "What did you expect? Wailing and gnashing of teeth?"

And I'm sure there's been much wailing... much teeth-gnashing... much in the Deep Sense of Loss department.

And here's something about when something like this happens: It makes you appreciate life more, and that appreciation of life makes you sadder about what happened. Kind of a vicious circle, really.

Meaning, I had the thought "Well, this world is one crappy place most of the time, so maybe skipping is not the worst thing that could happen to a person." Then this thought was followed by my thinking of all the things he's going to miss out on, and thus the appreciation for the good things this place has to offer... which is immediately followed by a sense of sadness for all this person will be missing... which brings you back to "What a crappy place this is most of the time." And around and around we go.

Which is to say, what a week.

Luckily I had my first week of Friday Night League, and I bowled much and laughed almost as much. Back to the good things of this world.

And I bowled too well for my first week. I set my average much higher than it was before.

Oh well.

Everyone have a good life until (and even beyond) my next post... and see how many things you can think of that are "Okay, life is crappy except for THAT".

Sunday, September 05, 2004

Happy Holiday Weekend!

Two weeks down... 34 or so more to go...

Don't get me wrong: I love the teaching part of teaching. But these days that's only about 5% of my job. The rest of it is a messy combination of jumping through hoops, dealing with the latest "attempt to improve education" (in quotes because it's usually more of an attempt to look like the elected official in question is trying to improve education, while really causing more problems than solving), last-minute policy change announcements, policy changes teachers are apparently left to guess at, and general bullcrap.

Anyway, this post in my non-blog was supposed to be about the holiday. Not all that crap.

It's been fun. I'm house-sitting... and dog-sitting... which is why I haven't returned e-mails sent to me after Friday.

It's nice being in a home much cleaner than my own. Plus, they have central air, and I don't have to sleep with a window open. I think that's where part of my sinus nightmare of this week came from.

Oh, by the way... I had a sinus nightmare this week. Not the real kind, but the real kind.

It makes sense if you remember that nightmare's aren't supposed to be real. Okay, sort of makes sense.

My sinus problems seem to be on the way out. You know, several health plans ago (my first or second year of teaching, I think... and as this is my 7th year of teaching, that would be 5 or 6 health plans ago), my doctor wanted me to undergo some tests to get to the bottom of all my sinus issues. There was potentially going to be a head scan and surgery. Then we changed health plans and he couldn't be my doctor any more. I've never seen my current doctor. Perhaps I should schedule an appointment... but his first available appointment is always like 6 weeks or 6 months away, and I have trouble enough knowing what I'm going to be doing in 6 minutes.

Anyway, hope everyone is having a stellar holiday weekend. I know mine has been enjoyable... mostly due to the over-the-counter sinus meds I've been taking!

Sunday, August 29, 2004

One week down...

35 to go...

It's been an odd week at school. I miss having Martin around. Campbell's not around. It's just an odd thing. But we've finished the first week, and the kids seem like a good bunch, overall (since I think I believe that people are basically good with the potential for evil, this is usually how I think of the kids anyway...).

The show closed last night, and I'll be glad for the free time... but I'll miss doing that show and I'll miss the cast (although there wasn't a lot of backstage bonding, since I was onstage just about the entire show). I did have a dream last night about the show. The actress portraying Julie was onstage, and we both lost our place in the script, so we were making up stuff until we could figure out where we needed to be. It was very odd.

I was going to go see The Wilders today, but I decided with gas prices as they are, maybe a drive to Kearney is not such the wise choice. I'll do my walk here in a few minutes, then I'll watch a few Buffy episodes, then I'll go to Ben & Tricia's for dinner... and yes, I'll have a shower somewhere after the walk, but before the dinner.

Hope your life is going well, whoever and wherever you are.

Monday, August 23, 2004

Summer's out for school...

Well, we're back. I'm at loose ends because my friend, my own personal Cordelia Chase, my lunch buddy, my chum, my... I'm out of ways to refer to her... but she's not there this year! It's making me not enjoy the year as much... okay, maybe it's just because it's the first day.

I'm noticing my emotions seem to be on major hold these days. The other night when the show opened, I didn't get nervous until the call for "places" came. Then all of a sudden: BAM! nervous.

And I wasn't dealing with this absent friend at all until this morning on the way to school, when I realized I wasn't as excited as usual about the year starting up, and then I realized why.

I went into her old room this morning to give someting to the teacher who took her place, and I thought I was going to have a nervous breakdown or something.

Oh well, I'll get over it. So it goes.

In other news...

First, let me apologize. I don't think people should die for voting as if they were a German living in early Nazi Germany... but I do think they should be put in so much pain they'd wish they were dead, and there should be a button on the wall that says "Death and an end to pain," but when they hit it, it merely causes them even more pain.

Because I think it's wrong to wish people dead, and I let my anger lead me down a bad path... see the nightmare post from earlier.

But enough of my asking forgiveness for doing something so thoughtless...

I had to tell a funny story from a few days after the election. My supervisor was having me collect these packs from people so I could get them all ready for the next time we needed them. Our boss had one, and I asked her if I could get it back. She gave me her keys and said it was in her car. She asked if I knew her vehicle, and I said yes.

So I'm in the parking lot, standing by her car (I see that pack in the car), and no matter how I position the keychain, I can't make the door unlock. I try the keys, but they don't work.

I go back upstairs and ask her if I had the right car (despite having seen the pack in the car). She confirms her vanity plate letters, and I go back down to spend another five or ten minutes attempting to get in.

Did I mention it's hot outside, and stairs are involved in getting back to the office every time I go back in.

So I decide to give up, and start walking up the outside stairs to the office. Then I decide to see if I can make the alram sound. I hit the button and a truck on the other side of the parking lot goes nuts. I realzed at that point I had no experience with car alarms, and hoped there wasn't anything complicated about turning them off... I hit the button again and shut it up, then went to my boss to explain what happened.

"Oh, I forgot, I have both vehicles here today!"

I was too happy realizing I wasn't as big of an idiot as I thought to be angry. It's nice to know I'm not the only one who makes mistakes like that, I guess.

Okay, I admit it, it was funnier when I was living it...

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Missouri: The Show-Me-Hate

Well, what more is there to say than 71% of the Missourians who voted yesterday deserve to die in a very painful way, while I watch (eating popcorn, even)?

There is a certain feeling of freedom you get when you are free to hate without having to hide it in a constitutional amendment. Missouri... what a scab on the face of this nation.

I figured it was going to pass, but I didn't think it would be by so much. I forgot Missouri has thousands of the hate-houses (they call them churches... mostly they believe this guy named Jesus came from some thing called god to teach everyone how to hate correctly... as if we as humans couldn't figure that out on our own) that afflict the countryside. So many hate-houses, so few bulldozers.

Ah, Missouri. What a joke.

There aren't words to describe how disgusting. It's as if the state has legalized the lynching of people of the "wrong" skin color... or legalized the forced wearing of little yellow star-shaped patches for certain citizens. Let's take a whole sub-set of our population, and call them "less than human". It's worked SO well in the past.

He's from Missouri. You'll have to show him.

Well, there are still 49 other states that think freedom isn't about discrimination and hatred. But you better pencil that number in. I hear Kansas is REAL upset-like and all that it didn't get to be the first scab state in the fag-hatin' festival.

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

And now, a word from our bowler...

Lisa and I won first place in DOUBLES in the tournament this weekend! Woo-hoo!

That is all. For now. More on Jon and Jhoneric and Julie and Stacy winning first in TEAM to follow later.

Sunday, July 18, 2004


Okay, it's so seldom I have a nightmare that I have to share it... but be warned, it might not be for the faint of heart. It's kinda icky in places.

The first part of the nightmare was about me visiting this guy I hardly know at all. I was at his house and these giant tornadoes attacked the city. We were watching it all out his bay window (I've never seen this guy's house, but I guess I think he has a bay window). The tornados were possessed or something, because you could plainly see faces on them, almost like they were being projected onto them.

Anyway, tornado, tornado, scream, crash, scary scary, but then that part of the dream ended when I left this guy and his family and started walking down the road.

The paved road became a gravel road, and I saw a car coming (did I mention it suddenly was the middle of the night?) and decided I should hide from it. It was like a Hummer or something, and they didn't see me. But as I was leaving the tall grass where I'd been hiding, I realized the road was no longer a gravel road, but more of a worn path. This was made more strange (and creepy) by the fact a voice said, "Be sure to choose the right path."

I decided since disembodied voices don't speak to me often, I should make this my primary guideline for the next few minutes... and of course the next thing I know I turn down a path that became a street decorated for Halloween... but in a creepy way. I can't explain how it was creepy. There were scarecrows with jack-o-lantern heads, and other whatnot.

But the really creepy part distracted me from the what-makes-this-so-creepy?-ness: I looked down and there was what appeared to be either a mauled baby or an aborted fetus.

And it wasn't alone. There was another one just a few feet ahead of me. Then I realized there was sort of a trail of them. So I start following this trail of small bloody bodies, and I'm totally freaking out (I mean the more lucid part of me... in the dream I was just simply terrified). I get to this tree and they've been like nailed to it or something, making the trail go up the tree, and laying on a branch is this big fat guy, all bloody and bloated and WAY obviously dead... and he'd been cut open, too. It was hideous.

When remembering this dream yesterday (I had it night before last), I thought I woke up there, but thinking about it, I remember there was a part after it where I had a total freak-out... I was freaked that I'd SO obviously chosen the wrong path, after the nice disembodied voice had advised against it, and I was freaked out because: ick... dead bodies galore.

I remember a brief bit about trying to find someone to tell me which way to the right path. And then while I was freaking out, I think that's when I woke up.

I'd like to blame the nightmares on the beverages I'd ingested while hanging out with Jon & Jhoneric Friday night. However, I had a mini-nightmare last night. Nothing like that one, so I won't bother to share it.

I must be nuts.


Okay, I haven't posted for... um... 17 days or so.

So, to catch up:

I saw The Wilders in a concert at a bar here in KC on the 2nd. It was THE ABSOLUTE COOLEST THING EVER. They closed the place. By that time the crowd had dwindled down to just enough for them to come down to the floor to perform. It was very cool. I had a great time.

We won the Road Rally on the 3rd! I got some of the time spent in the car and around town on video. Maybe someday you can see the documentary...

Also, this man at River Market said something that made me want to punch him in the face. Ask me about that someday.

Following winning the Road Rally, I drove to Patrick & Leigh's for Tessa's birthday party. I was late, but it was all good. Much fun and frivolity. A good time was had by all!

I was going to another Wilders gig that night, but my sore body revolted and instead I went home and was a slug.

The fourth got be back to tradition (I skipped tradition last year because I was in Gettysburg, and thus not able to continue the tradition) and spent most of the day and all evening at Patrick & Leigh's. This year we finally ACTUALLY made a list of the fireworks we'd purchased which we enjoyed. I learned this about myself: I'm not much of a fountain person.

Most of my days since then have been either working at the election board, hanging out with Tricia and the girls, or doing a bit of this-and-that at the school. I got to see Jen one day at Tricia's, and that was a cool thing.

I'm in rehearsals for "Jake's Women", which goes up on August 19th. Fun stuff, fun stuff... and that's what my Mon. thru Thur. evenings are spent doing.

I'm in a bowling tournament this weekend. I do well enough in my handicap games to make out well in the brackets. I walked in with $32 in my wallet, and despite paying Jhoneric back for breakfast the night before, I still walked out with $32 in my wallet! Go me!

I don't think I missed any major hoo-hah, but I'll let you know if I did! Later!

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Why go to the movies?

In this, my first draft of the letter I want to write to Cinemark, I will share with you my experience of viewing Shrek 2 tonight...

Everything was fine and dandy until 4 Cheryls come in (ask Jhoneric what a Cheryl is, and I apologize to my cousin Cheryl for using that term in that way), yammering away (the previews have started).

Now, if you're the type of person who doesn't have any interest in watching the previews, here's a cookie. I'm proud of you. Shout it from the mountain tops on your own time, perhaps in the direction of someone who could give a drenn.

So I let them have their I'm-an-idiot talk until just before the movie started... because why bother with the big lesson on respect when the smaller lessons of simple addition and knowing their hind ends from holes in the ground are so far beyond them, right?

But the movie started, and I leaned forward (of course, they had to sit in front of me) and said, "Just so you know, this isn't your living room, and if you continue to talk, I'm going to have to ask the management in here."

And these four Cheryls took this opportunity to talk. I figured I wouldn't miss much if I just missed the first few moments, so I got up and told the first lackey I could that I needed the problem of the four "ladies" talking taken care of. I lucked out and ran into someone right outside the theater (I was in one in the back corner, of course).

What does this guy do? He comes in the entrance that is in front of most of the seats. I didn't say "the four idiot ladies who can't figure out to shut up if someone official is watching them".

So, about 15 minutes into the movie, I have to get up again. This time I go straight to the first person who looks like they might be of some managementedness... and I know that's not a word. And I say, "This is the second time I've had to come out of Shrek 2 to have someone take care of these four girls who will not stop talking. If I have to come back again, I'm going to want my money back."

I was told to stop by on my way out and I'd get a free pass anyway, but as it didn't come with these four Cheryls' tongues on a platter, I had no interest in it.

Guess how they came looking? Yes, not the door at the BACK of the theater, but the entrance that leads you right to the front of most of the house.

Idiots. Paper-cuts.

So you'll have to wait until Shrek 2 comes out on DVD to ask me what I think of it. Mostly I think your average American has no sense of BASIC respect for those around them. This is not news. I've thought this for years. But it's nice to be proven right again and again. Not.

Okay. Rant over. Have a nice day.

Monday, June 28, 2004

What were you doing on November 24th, 2000?

I'm cleaning up my room at school this afternoon and I get a phone call. "This is the operator, is this Mark Riggs?"

I confirm that I am one of the several Mark Riggses on the planet. She asks me to hold.

When you've had a history of financial success like mine, you know when you're going to be talking to a collection agent. The problem was, I had no idea who would be collecting for what. I thought I was making progress in that department!

So when this guy comes on (I can't remember his name, so I'll just refer to him by his initials: A.H.) and says he's from some company or another (one obviously made to sound like its employees are anything but bottom-feeding buttwipes), and asks if I'd like to make a payment today, I have to ask...

Question 1: A payment for what?

He tells me he is collecting for St. Joseph Hospital and something else hospital-related... some sort of lab or another, I think.

Question 2: For what?

He tells me he doesn't have access to medical records, and asks if I'm going to be making a payment today.

Question 3: Where is this hospital?

Kansas City.

Question 4: When was this?

He tells me it was November 24, 2000 and again asks about a payment. At first I thought he said November 24, 2004, and I was positive I had not been in the hospital that day. Then I heard the 2000. But it still wasn't ringing any bells. I don't know about you, but when people call me up and spend the conversation constantly asking for money without giving any seemingly-valid reason for me to cough it up, I tend to think "Am I being scammed or what?"

I tell A.H. (who is about to earn his initials) that I have no idea what this would have been for.

A.H. is incredulous. "How could you be a patient and not know what it's for?" He confirmed my name and my birthdate.

Yes, good plan. Piss me off. The checkbook will be sure to come right out. He apparently didn't check to see that I have NO credit rating whatsoever, so he probably should have kept the vinegar and used more honey.

I informed him that I had recently been called by a hospital about an appointment for some sort of kidney thing or another... that would be an appointment I knew nothing about because I'd never called to set it up. So, basically, good sir, I'm not 100% positive that all hospitals keep good records.

A.H. then says (while I'm still trying to remember what I was doing on November 24, 2000), "So you're saying you're not going to be making a payment?"

"No, I'm saying I have no idea what this is for. I'm trying to think back to then."

"Okay Mr. Riggs, do you have any questions for me before we end this call?"

"Other than the one I already asked you that you don't have the answer to, no," I reply.

Then comes THE pisser: "You haven't asked me any questions."

Oh yeah. Call me up and start pressuring me to send you money for something I have no immediate memory of, then flippin' pull that sort of stunt...

So Mr. Riggs the Teacher came out, and I said (in a very teachery tone), "Don't lie to me! I asked you what this was for and you said you didn't have access to medical records."

He thanked me and asked me to have a nice day, and I told him he should do his best to have one, too.

Once he was no longer in my ear, I could think a bit harder about the date.

November 24, 2000?

I knew I'd been teaching, so I should have had insurance at the time... albeit crappy insurance (FYI, males who are thinking of becoming teachers: it is assumed you are a female with a male spouse who will have a "real & respectable job" that has ACTUAL good insurance... so there's no need to provide decent insurance for you).

Then it hit me: Oh... THAT November 24, 2000! I twisted my ankle. Bad. To the point I thought it was broken. While working. There were calls to my doctor (because god forbid you just go to the emergency room the day after Thanksgiving... no, first you have to track down your doctor so he can approve your going). There were discussions about how the employer in question didn't really have workman's comp insurance, and they'd pay for the visit if my insurance wouldn't cover it, but it would be best if the insurance covered it...

And they gave me money. I just don't know that a bill ever showed up at my house.

So, I get to call them and find out what the aytch-ee-double-hockey-sticks is going on with this.

November 24, 2000 indeed. Well, wish me luck!

Thursday, June 24, 2004

The quest for a bowling curve

Jhoneric called last night and talked me into going bowling with him and Jon. A good time was had by all. But... my high score was 122, methinks.

I don't feel so bad, because I made the decision to try to learn how to bowl with a curve... I'm feeling pretty good about it today (although the pain in my arm and shoulder is not-so-wanted).

Anyway, I didn't want to leave everyone to think yesterday was a totally down day.

Oh, and we played darts, which I lost both games of.

BUT... I kicked hind end on that Martian pinball/video game!

Wednesday, June 23, 2004

Oh how tiring...

As I was on my way home from teaching Summer School today I had a flat tire. Of course, it had to be just as I got on the "UNEVEN LANES", so at first I just thought the strange sound was form the asphalt or something... and of course it had to be somewhere with little-to-no shoulder... but there was about 10 yards of shoulder up a bit...


Well, the good news is I've finally gotten to use that spare tire I bought last year before my trip to Ohio. Also in the "good news" column: I'm pretty quick when it comes to changing tires.

In the "not-so-good news" department we have: 5 days until payday, two more days of summer school (to which I will be driving without a spare (see bit about payday), and in my haste to get the tire quickly changed I managed to gash up my hands a bit.

The other news (not really good or bad, you see...) is that my hands were filthy and I still had to buy gas. And of course who can resist scratching an itch on his face even when there isn't grease and grime all over his hands? So the people at QT were probably confused by my appearance. Teacher clothes and chimney sweep appearance.

Enough of that. On a more positive notes, Ben & Tricia brought the girls over last night and while mommy & daddy were out having dinner, I did my best to entertain. Maybe I'll share some photos from the "face-making" photo-op session. The pictures are just PRECIOUS, I tell you!

Saturday, June 19, 2004

Rants, raves, and other faves...

I was helping my sister Ruth put together a desk yesterday (by the way, do you think we have something built into all of us--much like that thing that's built into women so they forget exactly how bad labor was so they'll be willing to have another baby--where people who buy those "put-it-together-yourself" furniture items forget just what a nightmare it was to put together the last one whenever it comes time to buy another one...) and I thought of something I wanted to rant about on here. But now I've forgotten it.

I don't think it was furniture. Hmm... I wonder what it was.

Well, I'll come back when I think of it. I had a big yawn right before I started typing and I think my brain spilled out...

Sunday, June 13, 2004

I just saw the new Harry Potter movie and it reminded me... someone should make a movie out of the third book...

Okay, what a load of crap that movie was!

I mean, maybe it was okay if you've never read any of the books. I wouldn't know. But Tricia was trying to like it and she said she failed.

Okay, I'll start with the robes: My favorite "robeless" moment was when they went to Hogsmeade for the first time... I leaned over to Tricia and said, "Yeah, lets all wear our Muggle clothes to go visit a WIZARD VILLAGE!"

And what are the wizards wearing instead of actual robes? Apparently some clothes they stole from a production of some Dickens story. I understand why that choice was made, of course, because Dickens wrote so many stories about wizards, except he didn't.

And I understand you must take things out of a huge book like that when dumbing it down for the American audience, but don't you think the actual PLOT needs to be included... they barely touched on the betrayal of Harry's parents, and didn't even explain HOW they were betrayed, and how everyone was so sure who did the betraying. And then there was no explanation whatsoever of why Sirius, Pettigrew, and Potter became Animagi. And they aren't given credit for the Marauder's Map.

And did the screenwriter's copy of the book get dropped in a blender? Did he have to tape it back together?

And if you have that much money for special effects, that's the best you can do with the Patronus (which, by the way, isn't just a shield... but apparently... ugh, I can't even continue with that particular part of this rant).

Suffice it to say, I think I am done witht he Harry Potter movies. The good news is they can't touch what's in my head.

Oh, wait, I forgot... the whole scene with Harry crying in the woods and Hermione coming to comfort him... what was that?

And I like how they just ignore character traits... Harry steals candy from Neville? I ask again... Harry Potter STEALS candy from the non-evil Neville?

If you haven't gone to see it... well, first, sorry to ruin bits for you. Secondly, save your money! Read the book and enjoy the movie your own mind makes. It's always safe to say that will beat the actual movie any day of the week. I'm talking ANY movie, here, not just this sorry excuse for one.

Rant over.

Thursday, June 10, 2004

No comment

Nobody is commenting. Nobody is reading, most likely. ::sigh::

Well, Jordan is in town and visiting now, which means LOTS of Buffy-watching.

Season 1, Epsisode 5: Never Kill a Boy on the First Date

Maybe I'll change my settings so any random moron can comment...

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

More things to not blog about

Well, I finished my house/dog-sitting stint last night when Ben & Tricia arrived safely home. Ben completed the marathon in 6 hours and either 20 minutes, or 0.2 hours, which is 12 minutes... I was unclear on that part.

I'm back in my hot and humid home, and looking forward to the day when my friends bully me into turning the a/c on.

Today I had my first day of summer school... and let me say they sure are a motivated bunch! I should be nice. Some of them look like they really want to do well.

Tonight I get to work on election stuff, and I'm reminding myself even as I type that I need to go vote before I go to work for the election office.

I'd like to thank all of you who have commented. Your support during this trying time is very much appreciated. God bless.

Even if you haven't just sneezed.

Saturday, June 05, 2004

As long as I'm not blogging...

If you like old-time country music (or are musically open-minded enough to enjoy it), may I recommend The Wilders? Their blog was the one that inspired/required me to start this not-a-blog blog.

Still not blogging... BUT...

If you choose to reply, please keep your language school-appropriate!

There's not going to be anything to reply to, anyway.

Friday, June 04, 2004

Calm down, people... I'm NOT blogging!

Okay, I just wanted to respond to a blog... was all this really necessary?

And is that how you spell "necessary"? My kingdom for a dictionary!