Monthly Archives: November 2012
I’m visiting my family in Utah where I was born and raised for the holidays. It’s a tradition for me to come here every Thanksgiving and I love my time with my family. I do not however love Utah. Here are some fun things about my trip thus far.
The first thing I notice when I board the plane is that I’m surrounded by Mormons. I can hear groups of people around me talking about being born and raised in Utah, how much they love and miss it, conversations about The Church and how important it is to their lives. I put on my music and tune it all out – unwilling to expose myself to the propaganda.
When I get off the plane I observe how “vanilla” everything is. The airport staff lacks ethnic diversity (which I love), it is for the most part made up of Caucasians Oh wait, there was that one Islander and one Hispanic employee. I walk to the baggage claim and just to be obnoxious I keep my music on and start singing my heart out while waiting for my luggage. I get a couple of looks – some smiles, but mostly people ignore me. They don’t feel comfortable around those who do not fit their idea of normal so they ignore instead.
I spend the next couple of days in a small Mormon town south of Salt Lake. I am surrounded by cookie cutter women and men, families and babies – uncontrolled breeding everywhere and I cringe, our planet is already beyond it’s capacity to support the existing population yet these people with their religious beliefs of “populate the earth” are still breeding like crazy. I see countless large vehicles which are so bad for our already declining environment and I sigh, missing my ecologically friendly city already.
After a couple of days in Small Town Utah, I go up to the big city to stay with my mom. Finally I see a bit more diversity both ethnically and religiously. My first morning in the city I go to water aerobics with my mom, the class is a lot of fun and the instructor is superb at engaging all of the attendees. After the class we soak in the hot tub. Most of the people in the tub are elderly and I think they are surprised at my ability to converse with them so well. A woman comes and sits on the edge of the tub and I can’t stop looking at her. She is beautiful physically and spiritually and I tell her so. Later in the locker room we chat and I see the beauty of her soul even more.
When we get back to mom’s house I take a shower and I have to laugh. The water is so hard that I can feel it damaging my skin and hair. Soap doesn’t lather the way I’ve grown accustomed to, and the temperature is inconsistent – going from hot to cold and back to hot again. I shake my head in the knowledge that it will take a couple of weeks back in Seattle for my skin and hair to recover. I’m so glad I brought my coconut oil to help protect against the damage I know I am doing.
That night I get to spend a couple of hours with my new step-brother, we visit for a while and then he takes me on a thrilling motorcycle ride. I love the wind in my face and the humming of the engine between my thighs. After the ride I go to one of my sisters house to do a Tarot reading. She asks me if I’m comfortable doing one for a friend of hers, I agree of course. I do my sister’s reading first to get my juices flowing. She is astounded at the results of the reading and how my abilities have improved over the last year. Next I chat with her friend for a few minutes so that I can get a feel for who he is as a person. He’s never had a real tarot reading done before and I’m a little nervous that he will be disappointed. The reading, although not a very positive one, goes very well. I’m able to interpret the cards and explain how they pertain to him and his situation. After doing two readings I’m exhausted. It takes a lot of energy to do something of that nature and I tell my sister that in the future I am going to need to charge for non-familial readings. I pass out as soon as my head hits the pillow. Lucky for me (that statement is dripping with sarcasm) my body regenerates quickly so after a couple of hours I wake up and can’t get back to sleep. My boyfriend keeps me company via text until I’m able to finally drift back off to dreamland.
Today I had the opportunity to visit briefly with a neighbor whom I’ve known my whole life. I’m slightly uncomfortable at first (still shy in spit of the good face I put on) but I enjoy the conversation and the opportunity to let my old neighbors know that life is good to me. I’m getting some much needed R and R today. Sitting here alone in my mom’s house. The place I lived from the time I was 12 until I moved to Seattle (sorta?). I love the feel of my mom’s home, but it’s different now. She’s married and has blended her home with her husbands, still a good feeling, just different. OH! My mom’s house is haunted. It always makes me laugh when people freak out about that. I guess I’m just used to it because I’ve always had spirits or energy beings around me. I haven’t experienced anything on this trip yet. There are two cats which live here so I think that they help suppress most activity. Even when it’s active though, it doesn’t really bother me.
Tomorrow I get to go out to the West Desert to ride an ATV for the first time in my life. Even though I grew up here I never had the opportunity to do this. I am so excited! I will be operating the ATV, so I’m a little bit nervous about that. I haven’t even driven a vehicle in 6 years, let alone a recreational vehicle! Good thing we will be in the desert eh? The weather has been beautiful! It’s been blue skies with temperatures in the mid 50’s. I brought all of this super warm winter stuff and haven’t needed any of it! The snow capped mountains are so close, they are breath taking. At night with the clear skies I can see the constellations I’m so familiar with – in the same positions they’ve always been in. And why am I getting teary eyed writing about this? I have so many fond memories of this place. I’m sitting at the kitchen table with the patio door open and I feel so safe. I don’t think I could do that in the neighborhood I live in now.
On Thanksgiving I am going to my step-dad’s big extended family dinner that they do every other year. I’m nervous because it’s going to be a lot of people and I don’t do well with large crowds. My step-brother, the one who took me on the bike ride, promised to be my guide. I’m also excited because it just so happens that a niece of my step-dad is one of my best friends from high school (now THAT is a great story I will have to share!). I haven’t seen her in about 18 years. Thanks to Facebook we’ve been able to keep in touch recently.
The day after Thanksgiving is my FAVORITE day! It’s the event I look forward to the most. All my sisters, their families, mom and dad get together for a Left-Over party. Everyone brings their leftovers from the night before, plus anything else they want to make for the event and we all have a wonderful informal, rambunctious, let your hair down party. My sisters and I are vulgar – much to the chagrin and humor of my mom. The kids all interact well with each other. We play games, sing, dance and love. It is my favorite time of the year. Something I think about when I’m sad and look forward to always.
I’ll be heading home to Seattle on Saturday afternoon. The day of departure is always blissful and disheartening all at once. By the time I go home, I’m usually ready to BE home because I enjoy my peaceful low energy life in Seattle. And yet – I’m yet again leaving my family behind. I know when I get home we will all just keep on living our lives. Chatting occasionally, but all of us busy and wrapped up in our own day to day dramas. This year, I’m thankful that I have such a wonderful family that we can do these things and be these ways, and still have so much love for each other.
My boyfriend and I were wandering around the city this past weekend when he saw a car that he liked. He started talking about how he would like to get a car like that with a bumpin stero system, DVD Player and PS3 installed – the works. I started laughing at him and teasing him about not being able to play games while driving. He explained to me that he never said he would drive and play games at the same time.
As the conversation progressed we decided that this could be the new modern day mobile man cave. If you’ve ever read the book Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus – you will know what Man Cave I’m referring to. When men are stressed out or are trying to find a solution to a problem they tend to retreat into their man cave to think about things.
Traditionally a Man Cave would be the study, office, something along those lines. In this modern day and age men are more apt to play computer games than build something with their own hands. This change in our men has allowed them to create a more mobile way of retreating.
Picture this men: Sitting in your car at the top of a bluff over looking the ocean. You recline your seat back a bit and take a sip on whatever it is you are drinking. You watch the birds soaring out over the water, thinking about the day’s problems. You put down your drink and un-pause your game. And you annihilate all of the enemies coming after you! What an amazing way to unwind eh?
So here’s to the men – those I love and those I hate. Every one of them should have a man cave designed exactly how they want.
As a property manager for low-income tenants I generally feel very good about the work I do for those less fortunate than myself. I’m grateful every day that I have a job where I’m in a position to make a real difference in people’s lives. Most of the time the differences I’m able to make are positive ones. Every once in a while, not so much.
Recently I was required to evict a tenant due to him not complying with the house rules of our complex. This former tenant is elderly and borderline Dementia or Alzheimer’s. His condition is not severe enough at this point for the state to step in and mandate that he be moved to assisted living yet it is severe enough for him to not have a complete understanding of the processes and reasons for his eviction.
This gentleman has now been living in his car which was parked on the street outside the building he was evicted from. Over the past several weeks he continuously asked other tenants to find out from me when he would be able to move back into his apartment as though he thought he was just being grounded for bad behavior. Several tenants attempted to get him some help and get him into a shelter or some other type of care facility but he refused the help.
Today one of my tenants came to me and told me that he was going to take the elderly gentleman to a nursing home. At that time the elderly gentleman went into cardiac arrest and the paramedics were called. He was suffering from severe dehydration and shock due to the cold weather. The paramedics were able to revive the gentleman and took him to the hospital.
My conscience tells me that this tenant should never have been evicted. He should have had some type of supportive services, someone whom he trusted and could confide in to provide him with guidance and assistance. These services were not provided to him because of how our government is designed. I’ve had several people tell me not to let it bother me – that I was only doing what I am required to do by my employers. That’s not good enough for me.
I believe in basic human rights. I believe that as a human being we should be afforded basic services and dignities. I see daily that we “lesser” humans do not receive those basic human rights. We “lesser” humans are pushed aside, fall through the cracks and are only valued for the workforce that we provide for the powers that be. I am at the very core of my being appalled that this type of situation was allowed to occur in our great country.
I suppose – on the positive side (because I always try to look at the positive) that now this gentleman will be able to get the assistance he needs. I hope that he will recover from this incident and be moved to a care facility where he can relax and enjoy the rest of his life on this fucked up planet.
This week I celebrated my 37th birthday. On my special day I didn’t have to work (upon orders from my boss) and neither did my boyfriend. So he and I laid around my apartment all day eating, playing video games and enjoying each other’s company. Exactly what I wanted to do!
I’m still reeling from last year’s birthday debacle where I was forced to go to dinner with 3 persons – only one of whom I’m still friends with. That incident started a year-long war between one of the dinner attendees and myself. As a result of that I wanted a quiet day alone this year.
My kids called me to wish me a happy birthday and tell me how excited they were for my upcoming visit. My mom and step dad had sent me a card and my step dad sent me an email wishing me well, my step-sister and her daughter called, and that was it – which was just fine for me. I was supposed to go visit my brother’s bar to watch the election results but after eating an entire loaf of my lovely magical banana bread I was in a serious weed coma and didn’t want to do anything.
The next day I got belated birthday wishes from a couple of friends and that evening one of my sisters called. I answered the phone expecting a belated birthday wish and instead was bombarded immediately with my sister’s urgent need to vent. No mention was made of my special day. Instead I was treated to a circuitous web of half-truths and lies explaining my sister’s anger about a situation she was involved in. After hearing her version of the story I kind of chuckled at her and pointed out the positive aspects of the situation – explaining that if it were me I would actually be HAPPY about the resolution of the situation (which she completely overlooked or lied about).
After about 15 minutes of asking specific questions and getting shadowy answers my sister seemed to pick up on the fact that I wasn’t particularly interested in the conversation and abruptly got off the phone. After hanging up I sat there in my bed, chuckled and shook my head. Some people are so self-absorbed and insensitive – but guess what…I don’t really care. I had a great birthday and no one can take that away from me!
This past Tuesday, November 6th Washington State voters supported Initiative 502 which will “decriminalize” marijuana use. Under this initiative persons over the age of 21 will be allowed to carry up to one ounce of usable marijuana, provided that it is purchased from a licensed retailer. This initiative will allow our government to tax marijuana use as steeply as they recently started taxing alcohol sales. The revenue they expect to earn from the taxation of marijuana sales is slated to go toward Health Care.
As a connoisseur of this lovely and multi-use plant I have a couple of concerns over this initiative. My initial concern is over the taxation of so-called “allowed” product. I’ve mentioned several times that I’m an incredibly poor person. If I’m required to purchase my product from an authorized retailer and pay exorbitantly high taxes, I will not be able to afford my herbs.
My second concern is that they are attempting to legislate this the way they have alcohol in the past. However last year we passed an initiative to allow alcohol sales in retail stores and have done away with state-run liquor stores. So does this mean I can go down to Walgreen and purchase and eighth of weed any time I want? And if so, when will my local Walgreen begin stocking said marijuana?
My final concern is over where the revenue is slated to be used – Healthcare. Last I checked we citizens of this mighty and wealthy country are not provided basic healthcare coverage by our government. We are required to go out and purchase our own healthcare or be penalized for not having any coverage. So too the State of Washington is no different. They do not provide basic healthcare coverage for their citizens – unless you are homeless. So WHERE is this supposed healthcare money going to actually be used?
I’ve looked everywhere on the internet and like most bills and initiatives which are passed under our noses, it’s next to impossible to find a copy of the bill or initiative in its entirety. My opinion about this entire initiative is that they are not decriminalizing marijuana. Rather they are making it easier for corporate and government officials (aka criminals) to make a profit, while exposing retailers and consumers to possible federal prosecution.
I’m interested to see how this plays out.