Eve of Destruction

My music choices these days seem to run to protest songs … the other night I couldn’t get Joan Baez’ The Night They Drove Ol’ Dixie Down out of my head, and then tonight, as I was responding to comments, writing my post about Trump unleashed on the UK, and answering email, I found myself humming Barry McGuire’s Eve of Destruction.  I hesitated to share this one, for it isn’t a happy, upbeat cheery song.  But, it is reflective of how I feel tonight, and therefore it is honest and genuine … something this country could use a lot more of.  So, without further ado, and with a promise to be cheerier on the morrow, I give you Barry McGuire …

Eve of Destruction
Barry McGuire

The eastern world, it is explodin’,
Violence flarin’, bullets loadin’,
You’re old enough to kill but not for votin’,
You don’t believe in war, but what’s that gun you’re totin’,
And even the Jordan river has bodies floatin’,
But you tell me over and over and over again my friend,
Ah, you don’t believe we’re on the eve of destruction.

Don’t you understand, what I’m trying to say?
And can’t you feel the fears I’m feeling today?
If the button is pushed, there’s no running away,
There’ll be no one to save with the world in a grave,
Take a look around you, boy, it’s bound to scare you, boy,
And you tell me over and over and over again my friend,
Ah, you don’t believe we’re on the eve of destruction.

Yeah, my blood’s so mad, feels like coagulatin’,
I’m sittin’ here, just contemplatin’,
I can’t twist the truth, it knows no regulation,
Handful of Senators don’t pass legislation,
And marches alone can’t bring integration,
When human respect is disintegratin’,
This whole crazy world is just too frustratin’,
And you tell me over and over and over again my friend,
Ah, you don’t believe we’re on the eve of destruction.

Think of all the hate there is in Red China!
Then take a look around to Selma, Alabama!
Ah, you may leave here, for four days in space,
But when your return, it’s the same old place,
The poundin’ of the drums, the pride and disgrace,
You can bury your dead, but don’t leave a trace,
Hate your next door neighbor, but don’t forget to say grace,
And you tell me over and over and over and over again my friend,
You don’t believe we’re on the eve of destruction.
No, no, you don’t believe we’re on the eve of destruction.

Songwriters: P. F. Sloan, 1965
Eve of Destruction lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

Islands in the Stream

I have a feeling that not too many of you are country music fans, and quite honestly I’m not terribly fond of most country music, either.  I absolutely cannot stand bluegrass music, nor gospel.  And I don’t like anything that has a lot of twang and whiny lyrics. But there are some exceptions, and Kenny Rogers is definitely one of my exceptions.

Tonight’s song, Islands in the Stream, was written by the Bee Gees and is sung here by Kenny Rogers & Dolly Parton.  Named after the Ernest Hemingway novel, it was originally written for Marvin Gaye in an R&B style, only later to be changed for the Kenny Rogers album. It was released in August 1983 as the first single from Rogers’ album Eyes That See in the Dark.eyes that see in the darkThe song reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the United States, giving both Rogers and Parton their second pop number-one hit (after Rogers’ “Lady” in 1980 and Parton’s “9 to 5” in 1981). It also topped the Country and Adult Contemporary charts.

I like the song … I like the energy and the camaraderie between Kenny & Dolly.  And … yes, I admit it … I don’t mind a bit looking at Kenny Rogers … he is not at all hard on the eyes!

kenny rogers

Islands in the Stream

Dolly Parton, Kenny Rogers

 

Baby when I met you there was peace unknown

I set out to get you with a fine tooth comb

I was soft inside

There was something going on

 

You do something to me that I can’t explain

Hold me closer and I feel no pain

Every beat of my heart

We got something going on

 

Tender love is blind

It requires a dedication

All this love we feel needs no conversation

We ride it together, ah ha

Making love with each other, ah ha

 

Islands in the stream

That is what we are

No one in between

How can we be wrong

Sail away with me

To another world

And we rely on each other, ah ha

From one lover to another, ah ha

 

I can’t live without you if the love was gone

Everything is nothing if you got no one

And you just walk in the night

Slowly losing sight of the real thing

 

But that won’t happen to us and we got no doubt

Too deep in love and we got no way out

And the message is clear

This could be the year for the real thing

 

No more will you cry

Baby I will hurt you never

We start and end as one

In love forever

We can ride it together, ah ha

Making love with each other, ah ha

 

Islands in the stream

That is what we are

No one in between

How can we be wrong

Sail away with me

To another world

And we rely on each other, ah ha

From one lover to another, ah ha

 

Islands in the stream

That is what we are

No one in between

How can we be wrong

Sail away with me

To another world

And we rely on each other, ah ha

From one lover to another, ah ha

 

Islands in the stream

That is what we are

No one in between

How can we be wrong

Sail away with me

To another world

And we rely on each other, ah ha

From one lover to another, ah ha

 

Islands in the stream

That is what we are

No one in between

 

Songwriters: Barry Gibb / Maurice Ernest Gibb / Robin Hugh Gibb

Islands in the Stream lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc, Universal Music Publishing Group

Imagine …

Imagine there’s no heaven
It’s easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people living for today
Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people living life in peace, you
You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope some day you’ll join us
And the world will be as one
Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people sharing all the world, you
You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope some day you’ll join us
And the world will be as one
Songwriters: John Winston Lennon
Imagine lyrics © Downtown Music Publishing

If It Ain’t Broke …

There is a saying on this side of the pond, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”.  Now, while I admit that there are exceptions to this, for the most part I find it to be sage advice.  A few examples …


Tide Pods

Recently Proctor and Gamble, the makers of Tide laundry detergent, decided to re-design the lids to their Tide Pods product.  There was nothing wrong with the old lid.  I buy the 150 count container once a month, and have never once had a complaint about the lid … until two months ago.  Used to be, the lid had a little indentation in which to place your thumb, then simply pop the hinged top up, grab a pod and give the lid a little push to close it again.  Simple and can be done with one hand, since the other hand is typically otherwise occupied.

But then … some bozo over at P&G with too much time in his hands said to no one in particular, “Hey, I got an idea … let’s make the lids on Tide Pods impossible to open!”  And somebody else with a budget bigger than their brains thought it was a wonderful idea, and it took off from there.  Hundreds of thousands of dollars in r&d costs later, the idea was good to go.  P&G spent a few more hundreds of thousands to re-tool their assembly line in order to manufacture …Tide pods

A child-proof lid!  Whoa … I did not realize that so many children were into eating laundry detergent!  And wait, is it too much trouble for parents of small children to place their pods on a shelf above the washing machine so that the tots cannot reach it?  I know, I hear you shaking your heads and saying, “What the heck is she prattling about now – what’s the big deal?”

Well, let me tell you the big deal, friends!  The lid is made such that one must either have very large, strong hands, else use two hands, and even then it is difficult to open.  The two “press here” spots are about six inches apart and are very difficult to press in. They are obviously made for someone of Paul Bunyan’s stature, but I have small, arthritic hands and I cannot open this! My solution has been to use a sharp knife to break the lid off completely, throw the lid away and leave the pods on the rack shelf next to the washer/dryer uncovered.  It is the only way!


Toaster Scrambles

Toaster Scrambles, made by Pillsbury, are one of the few processed foods that I even buy, for I am a firm believer that ‘made from scratch’ is tastier, more economical and healthier.  But, when it comes to breakfast, if I cannot grab something quick, simple & tasty, I just skip the meal altogether and wait for supper (I don’t do lunch … ever!).  So, I keep a few such things around, coffee-flavoured yogurt, granola, instant oatmeal and toaster scrambles.  I like these …

scrambles-1

But then, Pillsbury decided to change it around a bit.  They added potatoes.

scrambles-2

WHY???  To cut the cost of the product, of course!  Potatoes are cheaper than eggs, cheese, bacon or sausage, so if they added potatoes, they could cut back on the more expensive ingredients.  They also cut back on the flavour, and now I honestly cannot tell the difference in taste between the pastry itself and the cardboard box it comes in!  I’m going back to my banana-walnut oatmeal with a dollop of peanut-butter.

I actually sent Pillsbury an email telling them that I was disgusted with the new product and would not buy them again.  I received a canned response thanking me for taking the time to write.


Faucet aerators

Recently the maintenance crew where I live came along and, without so much as asking if I would like new faucet aerators, installed them in all three bathroom sinks and the kitchen, as well as new shower heads in the two upstairs baths.  These devices are supposedly ‘new and improved’ and will save on water.  Sigh.  The old ones worked fine, in fact, about a year ago I had replaced all the bathroom sink aerators, and I replace the one in the kitchen from time-to-time.  No, I am not a plumber by trade, but I know my way around the workings of faucets, drains and toilets.  Feel free to call me anytime … I make house calls.

So, after the maintenance dudes did all this, I went to the sink, turned the water on, and wondered what that was coming out of the spigot … a stream of bird pee, perhaps?  I held my hands under it and within about 30 seconds, they were actually wet enough to apply soap!  Before, I could fill my kitchen sink in about a minute, but with this new and improved aerator, it took fully 5 minutes!!!  Now, how the sam hell is this saving water?  On to the shower … AAAAAARRRRRGGGGGHHH!!!  It took three times as long to wash my body, then about 2-3 minutes to get my hair wet enough to apply shampoo, then another 2-3 minutes to get all the suds out.  I didn’t even bother with conditioner.

Even tooth-brushing was a challenge!

Suffice it to say that both shower heads and all four faucet aerators have now been replaced with ones that actually work.  Note, please, that I am all for conserving water, and I try very hard to do so, but when I spend 4 times longer in the shower, it did not save any water, and it did likely shorten my expected life span!


These were just three such cases that have set my teeth on edge lately, though I could no doubt think of many more, given time and space.  There is, of course, the opposite argument that is best stated in this cartoon …If it ain't broke

Thoughts On This ‘Independence Day’

fireworks-promo-articleLarge.gifToday is the Fourth of July … typically a fun holiday involving grill-outs, get-togethers with friends, and at the end of the day, a fireworks display.  I remember many a Fourth spent with our old friends Kim & Jerry, cooking out on their patio, then going to a local park where every year there was an awesome fireworks display.  It was a much-anticipated day.  This year, I actually forgot that it was the fourth until yesterday when I was talking on the phone with my friend Herb, and he reminded me.  Whoopee.

The point of the holiday is to celebrate the signing of the Declaration of Independence back in 1776, some 242 years ago.  It would be another eleven years before the U.S. Constitution was born, but still, it was the beginning of the process that eventually led to the nation we now know as the United States of America, the USA.

Frankly, while I still have admiration for those who have gone before and helped shape this nation, those who worked tirelessly to make it a good place to live by abolishing slavery, working toward civil rights and equal rights for women, those who have engaged in humanitarian ventures to help the people … the ordinary people … of this nation thrive, I have very little pride in this country today.  I really do not feel like celebrating the hypocrisy that this nation has become.

We are currently in the midst of such great upheaval, such chaos, that I no longer even feel that it is a single nation, but rather a bunch of people living on the same continent, but being engaged in a constant battle with prize being … nothing.  The things that once made me proud to live in this country are being eroded day-by-day.  Police killing unarmed blacks simply because they can get away with it.  White supremacists, neo-Nazis and other hate groups marching, holding rallies, all because they are arrogantly convinced that somehow pale skin is a virtue.  Conspiracy theories running rampant. People at either end of the political spectrum engaging in juvenile name-calling, threats and taunts, rather than trying to work together to solve the nation’s ills.  And nearly 3,000 innocent children, torn from the arms of their parents and being held hostage by our own government, innocent pawns in a high-stakes game of politics. Where this nation began as a nation of immigrants, we now vilify immigrants.

The people we voted for, we elected to represent us and our values, sit in their fancy air-conditioned offices and scoff at our needs, our desires.  “Vote for me and I’ll promise you everything you ask for,” they say in the lead-up to November, but then after they are elected, it’s “Ha ha, sucker!  Don’t call me … I’ll call you!”  They do not even hear or see our cries for equality, for truth, for justice, for help.

The history of this nation has sometimes been noble, often not.  We killed the Native Americans in droves and ran them off their land for our own greed.  We held on to the notion that African-Americans were not wholly to be considered human beings, but rather slaves, for far too many years and even today, some hold onto that belief.  We interned citizens of Japanese ancestry for no other reason than unwarranted fear during World War II.  We murdered more than a quarter-of-a-million people by dropping atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki Japan in 1945.  The list of our less-than-glorious moments in history is long.

And today, we are engaged in actively and knowingly destroying the earth for no other reason than to put more money in the pockets of rich corporate barons.  We are devaluing our poor people, robbing them of health care and even food & shelter.  We are condoning the blatant discrimination of people whose skin is not pale or who do not believe in the “Christian values” that are determined by a small group of men called ‘televangelists’ who are getting rich off people who can ill-afford to support their luxury lifestyles.  We are supporting corrupt politicians who are milking us for their own personal gain.  We are intentionally scaling back our education system so that only the wealthy will be well-educated enough to hold political offices in the future.

There are many things to love about this nation, but today I have trouble remembering what they are.  I love the wonderful forests, rivers, lakes and coastal areas, but those are being destroyed by greed, by oil pipelines, drilling and mining operations that put more money in the pockets of the wealthy.  It feels like everything that was once good is being destroyed, and I find it difficult to feel any joy in celebrating the birth of a nation that is now eating its own.  A nation that places more value on a dollar than on a life.

Many will not like this post, will not like my harsh words, and I understand that.  Frankly, I don’t like them either, but they are honest words.  Honesty … one of the values, along with integrity and compassion, that we have thrown in the trash as we race to become a nation of rich white people.  It is a vision that sickens me and one that I want no part of.

Keep safe and enjoy your holiday, friends.  Love ‘n hugs to you all!

OH NO … I Have Caught … Trumpitis!

There is an epidemic, a genuine health care crisis in the United States, and I, dear friends and readers, have contracted a case of it.  At first I wasn’t sure what it was, thought perhaps it was a normal part of the aging process.  But, as time went on and more symptoms began to appear, I realized something was not right … something was quite wrong!  The final straw came about because of my shoes.  Yes, yes, I said my shoes.  They have long had holes in the toes, but most recently also sprang holes in the heels, which for most people would necessitate a trip to a shoe store, or more likely Amazon, for a new pair.  But, a few pieces of duct tape, and they are functional as long as I don’t walk through puddles.  Now you are wondering what this has to do with my illness, right?  It is a symptom.  I have very holey shoes and I don’t care.  I have a cracked bone in my hand, and I don’t care.  There is a load of clothes sitting wrinkled in the dryer, and I don’t care.  Dinner?  I don’t care.  Raining?  I don’t care.  Cat just puked on the carpet?  Oh well.

I was about to name this disease I-don’t-care-itis until I began to assess the other symptoms, including sleeplessness, loss of appetite, funky heartbeat, bad temper, aversion to outdoors, exhaustion, crying over a dead bee, and more.  So, I started scouring the internet for a name for my mysterious disease, hoping to find a simple cure, like drinking orange juice thrice times a day.  Well, I found a name for it, but sadly, my friends, there is no cure.

It turns out, the answer was right on our friend Gronda’s blog post of 28 April 2017,  one that I had somehow missed.

“Trumpitis which is a strain causing the spread of anxiety and fear. The symptoms of weariness, exhaustion, temper outbreaks, mood swings to outright depression has taken hold of a large number of Americans especially those who are non-supporters of the republican President Donald Trump.”

That’s it … that is the disease with which I am afflicted!  I was briefly encouraged by a comment on Gronda’s post saying that the cure was something called Mugwumps.  I immediately called the local pharmacist, but he informed me that Mugwumps had been banned in the U.S. since January 2017.  Figures.  I contacted the Canadian pharmacy where I buy my insulin, but they said they are not allowed to ship Mugwumps to the United States.  Sigh.  I am doomed … doomed, I tell ya!

However, as I continued to troll the ‘net, seeking assistance or asylum, I came across a few things that just might help!  First, a colouring book …Trump coloring bookI suppose it would be something of a stress-reducer to colour his hair, say … hot pink, and his tie a garish lime green!  But wait … how about this one, folks …Trump dartboardOh, man … I used to be really great at hitting the bullseye when I was a kid playing darts with my dad.  I wonder if I still have that magic touch?

And how about this one …And finally, there is a book written to help us all overcome the trauma of Trumpitis …According to the blurb on Amazon …

Are Trump’s attitudes and behaviors bringing you down?

This practical, surprising and hopeful self-help guide will provide you with the tools to address the despair, panic and tragedy that Trump’s election and daily nightmare circus has created. It consists of 365 easy to digest prompts that are perfect for regular self-care and reflection.

For the good of the country you need to take care of yourself, provide political resistance and show the world that what Trump represents is America at it’s [sic] worst. As a nation we can do better and this book will help keep you, your family, your friends sane and energized until the end of the Era of 45.

I have downloaded a sample of the book to my Kindle and will let you know if it helps.

I am relieved, upon Googling ‘trumpitis’ to find that I am far from being the only sufferer of this disease.  Even children as young as age four have been diagnosed with this disease. There is a hashtag #trumpitis and there is even a Twitter account/page for it .  One site indicated that scientists are working on a cure, but it looks to be >10 years away.  Sigh.

From the Twitter feed #Trumpitis …

“It’s ok #USA. We know you have a horrible infection & are not yourself!! #Trumpitis is temporary. Sadly it will take a few years to pass but know we do realize it and will welcome you back when you feel better! #CanadiansArePatient #TrumpConcentrationCamps #WeAreNotPerfectEither”

“I walked away from relationships because they acquired I’m not sure but I’m beginning to believe it’s a Terminal diagnosis! I say Good riddance !”

It seems the only option is to move out of the country to one where I can obtain Mugwumps, else suffer until the bitter end.  I have directed Chris that upon my demise she is to sue the hell out of the person who brought this terrible malady to our shores.

Meanwhile, I shall not come into physical contact with any of my friends, for I believe the disease is highly contagious.  I considered using this as an opportunity to be heroic, to fix that which is broken in our nation by infecting as many republicans as possible, but I recently discovered that they have a natural immunity to the disease … some sort of antibody they were born with.  Ah well, Wonder Woman I ain’t.

Protect yourselves, my friends!  If you do not already have symptoms, stay in, keep the television off, stay away from the news.  SAVE YOURSELVES!!!

An Update and a Question …

Good morning afternoon friends!  I have been meaning to give you this update for a week or so now, and I am also seeking your opinions on a question that has arisen this week …

The Update:

Some of you may have wondered just what became of Lisa Jensen and the project we were planning to engage in civil discourse about issues, starting with guns, gun regulation, etc.  Well, the project is temporarily on hold, but I hope to be able to jump start it soon.  Lisa and her husband are in the process of a major lifestyle change, you see.  They bought a sailboat, and are planning to live on the boat!  So, as she tells me, they are busy from sunup to sundown every day trying to divest themselves of a lifetime of detritus, as well as get their house ready to rent.  They will be sailing around in the Chesapeake Bay, and Lisa will be doing her work from ‘home’ (assuming she can get a WiFi signal).

It is quite a change, and she sounds excited and happy.  I am happy for her, though I don’t think it would be a move I would like, for I am a creature of routine, not very adventurous and am always a bit ‘off’ when my schedule or venue changes, even briefly.  Lisa assures me that she does still want to engage in our discussions and we have the beginnings of one started via email, but I don’t know quite when we will be able to proceed.

 The Question:

You may remember the post I did a few days ago about Jeff Amyx, the man who owns a hardware store and has a sign stating “No Gays Allowed” on his front door.  I have been engaged in a discussion with rawgod, who I can always trust to hold my feet to the fire when they need it, about the necessity or appropriateness of posts like this.  I have always thought it was important to bring people like this into the open, to shine a light on them and their bigotry, to show them to the world as they really are.  Rawgod, however, states his case …

“I am certainly all in favour of fighting bigotry, etc. But, IMO, while you are spreading the word of a bigot, you are also helping that bigot have his 15 minutes of fame. It’s just the other side of looking at the coin.”

I acknowledge that there is some truth to what he says … the ‘other side of the coin’, as it were … and yet I have mixed thoughts.  So, he suggested that I put the question to you all, and that is what I am doing.  What are your thoughts on this?  I know that I sometimes chastise the mainstream media for giving too much attention to people who thrive on that attention, and it seems to legitimize those people.  Am I doing the same?  Or do we need to keep these people out front for all to see?

I look forward to your opinions on this!

Now go forth and have a great rest-of-the-day!

Spammers & Scammers & Trolls — OH NO!

I am NOT a criminal who is wanted in four states.  NOT!  However, below are four voice-mails I have received this month that might give you reason to question my statement:

May 15; 10:19 a.m.

The local police there are four serious allegations pressed on your name at this moment. We would request you to get back to us so that we can discuss about this case before taking any legal action against you.  Number to reach us is 585-633-2725.  Thank you.

May 16; 12:30 p.m.

There are four serious allegations pressed on your name at this moment.  We would request you to get back to us so that we can discuss about this case before taking any legal action against you.  The number to reach us is 917-382-7107.  Thank you.

May 21; 10.46 a.m.

Is there are four serious allegations pressed on your name at this moment.  We would request you to get back to us so that we can discuss about this case before taking any legal action against you.  The number to reach us is 607-595-3962.  Thank you.

May 22; 10:26 a.m.

There are four serious allegations pressed on your name at this moment.  We would request you to get back to us so that we can discuss about this case before taking any legal action against you.  The number to reach us is 347-384-3901. Thank you.

warrantNotice that my name is never mentioned?  Also notice the English is not very good?  I  listened to one of the messages to see if perhaps it was just my voice-to-text that was making it appear to be broken English, but no, they are speaking with a heavy accent and saying exactly the words you see here.

This scam started a couple of months ago.  The first was from Las Vegas, the next Florida, California, then New York.  All places I have not set foot in for at least 20-30 years.  I laughed it off and blocked the numbers.  But, as soon as I block one number, they pop up on a different one.  All of the above calls are from New York area codes.  At first it was funny, but after 3-4 months of this, I am no longer laughing.  I rarely get to bed early, usually somewhere between 3:00 – 5:00 a.m., so I do not appreciate an early call, when I have barely slept an hour.  I now keep my phone on ‘silent’ most of the time, for my phone ringer is very loud and obnoxious (intentionally, so that I can hear it when somebody actually calls).

funeral homeAnd then there are the ads that come in the mail for the funeral homes and old-age homes.  GAWK!!!  I walk 4 miles a day, weather permitting.  I maintain a two-story, three-bedroom, three-bath townhouse.  I cook 4-5 nights a week.  I do 12-14 loads of laundry a week.  I take care of 7 unruly kitties.  I do not think I need to enter an old-age home, nor a funeral home just yet and frankly, I am offended to receive as many as ten glossy advertisements in the mail each week encouraging me to hurry and plan my funeral before it’s too late!  I worked for a publishing/printing company, and I know what those glossy ads cost.  Frankly, I will be cremated, my ashes can be put in a Ziploc bag until the girls have time to dump them in a forest somewhere.  No muss, no fuss, no expense.  So stop sending me the bloody ads!!!

And then there is the spam email.  Sigh.  I was getting, on average, more than 200 per 24-hour period.  I have an excellent spam filter, so it is rare that any of it makes it to my inbox, but I still have to at least glance at every bit of it in order to ensure that something didn’t accidentally go to spam.  It happens … not often, but it happens.  So, last week I went on a campaign to ‘unsubscribe’ from every bloomin’ spammy email.  Every few hours I cleaned out the spam folder, unsubscribing to each.

'Wow! I've got one from someone I know!'First problem, some emails do not have an ‘unsubscribe’ button.  Second problem, some force you to provide your email address, and then pop up a message saying “Unsubscribe was unsuccessful.  Please try again later.”  Third problem, in some cases, rather than the emails stopping, they multiplied exponentially!  So, after hours spent trying to stop the spam, I am now getting almost emailsthe same amount I was before.

Notice to all spammers:  If I need an insurance policy, dental implants, plumbing repairs, genital enhancements, a hit man, Viagra, new windows, or a girlfriend, I will NOT be contacting you!!!

Okay, so we all have this same problem, and maybe I am making a mountain out of a molehill, blowing it all out of proportion, but I work hard, and I don’t have time to waste on such idiocy.  More and more, it is driving me nuts and I want to retaliate by giving the callers an earful, but I know – have been told by all the experts – this will only prove that mine is a working number and will increase the number of calls.  But, sigh, there ought to be a way to stop it.

What is most worrisome, though, even more than my annoyance, is that obviously some people are falling for all this b.s. and are being robbed. I am willing to bet that in most cases it is the elderly who are falling for the scams.  Take the phone calls, for example.  If I were to answer one of those calls, or call them back, I bet money they would say something along the lines of, “Oh … it could be a mistake … just give me your social security number and let me double check.  … … … Ma’am?  There was a mistake … it was not you, but somebody else.  My apologies.  Have a nice day.”  And now they have your social security number, possibly your driver’s license number, age, address, and maybe even your bank information.  What could possibly go wrong, eh?

The glorious age of instant electronic communication is not without its drawbacks.  Sigh.

Meet The Significant Seven …

I promised this post last week, as a few of my friends had asked to meet the Significant Seven, the family members who walk on all fours. But for reasons best left alone, I was not able to make any headway last week.  So, I promised, promised, promised it this week.  Now, the funny thing is that I started to write about my band of warriors, my ragtag crew of moggies, but when they saw what I was doing, Ollie made it clear … no uncertain terms … that they would much prefer to write about themselves than to leave it to my possibly biased opinion.  We sat down together, me, Ollie and Boo, and came to terms.  I am allowed to introduce them, but then I am to step back and let each tell a bit about themselves.  I am allowed a brief blurb at the end, but otherwise, as it is their story, they will be the tellers.  (Just don’t believe everything they say, especially Tiger!)

0220141617a

This is what happens when Miss Goose gets comfy …

The Gang, oldest to youngest:

Orange

Princess Nala

Oliver (Ollie for short)

Pandora (Pandi for short)

Booker T. Washington (Boo for short)

Tiger Lily (Bitch for short)

Isabella (Izzy for short)


OrangeOrange-2Hi!  I don’t like my name, but sometimes they call me Big O or Old Man, and I like those better.  Miss Goose named me when I came here, but I don’t remember, ‘cause I was just a tiny baby.  Some kids found me somewhere, and they took me to every house on the street, but … 😢 … nobody wanted me.  And then they brought me here, and Mom-mom (Chris) and Miss Goose wanted to keep me, but Grammie said “NO”.  So, on down the street we went, but Mom-mom told me later that in just maybe one minute, Grammie changed her mind and said, “Go get ‘im”.  And I’ve been here ever since.

The thing is, though, that I’m getting very old, ‘cause I came here in 2000, so I’m, like 18 years old now, and that’s pretty old.  A few weeks ago, I had something happen to me and I couldn’t stand up.  Grammie said she thought it was a ‘stroke’, whatever that is.  But, I got some better, and I still fall sideways sometimes when I walk.  I used to be really fat, but now my hip bones stick out and I’m just like a furry skeleton.  But I’m happy, and I get lots of pats, so life isn’t all bad.

They tell me I’m an ‘Odd Bodkins’, ‘cause I like some foods, like oatmeal, yoghurt, pumpkin goo and ice cream that moggies aren’t ‘posed to like.  I ran away from home last summer, and Grammie & Goose had to spend hours trying to find me.  That was fun, but now, anytime the front door is opened, they lock me up in the bathroom.  Hmph … nothing like trust!

Ollie is my bestest friend and he takes care of me sometimes, especially when I get all dirty.  Grammie calls us ‘the gay hombres’, but I’m not sure what that means.0203141522a


NalaNala-1Hey!  Introduce me properly, Grammie – you’s supposed to curtsy to the princess.  Oh … eh … heh heh … hi.  My name is Princess Nala, but you can just call me ‘your highness’.  I’m the second oldest and I’m special.  If I need to go to the litter box, I just let out a cry, and somebody comes and picks me up and carries me.  An’ when I’m ready for bed at night, my servant Miss Goose carries me up the stairs. That’s ‘cause I’m royal and shouldn’t have to wear out my beautiful royal paw-pads walking all that way.  (It’s actually because she’s fat & lazy, but don’t tell her I said so)

I got in trouble a few nights ago, but it wasn’t my fault. They left me in the bedroom too long and I peed on the bed.  Oopsie!  It was mom-mom’s bed, but Grammie got the maddest, ‘cause she had to wash the sheets and it was some special day called “Mother’s Day”.  But she’s not a ‘mother’ anyway … she’s just Grammie.

I get picked on a lot by Tiger.  Don’t let her pretty face and fluffy fur fool you … she’s vicious!  I don’t play … play is for juveniles like Boo.  I am above that, ‘cause I am a Princess.nala-2.jpg


OliverOllie-1Hi, I’m Oliver, but they call me Ollie-bug, cause when I was a baby I always rolled up in a ball, and Grammie said I looked like a pill bug.  When me an’ my sissy, Pandi, was just teenie, tiny babies, we got throwed into a big trash dumpster.  I took care of my sissy, an’ I got out of the dumpster and went across the street, screaming!  I can scream real good!  I screamed and screamed, and then Mom-mom was walking back from the mailbox and she heard me, an’ she picked me up an’ brought me here.  But I kep’ tellin’ her dat my sissy was still there.  Finally, she listened an’ she went back an’ found Pandi an’ we’ve been here ever since.  I guess we have a pretty good home … I never had any other, so I don’t know.  But they buy us good food and we get lots of pats and sometimes catnip.

Every mornin’ I wait outside Grammie’s door for her to come out and she ruffs my head an’ always says the same thing: “Hey bud, how ya doin’?”  I think she forgets that my name is Ollie, not Bud.

I love to chase mousies.  Not real mousies, but we gots mousies with catnip in ‘em and I can even throw dem in the air and catch ‘em!  Grammie says I’m the best behaved of the bunch … ‘cept Izzy, but she’s artistic or sumpin like that.

Ollie-2

They’ll never find me here!


PandiPandi-1My name is Pandi and I’m really, really nervous of just about everything.  My favourite room is the bathroom, ‘cause I can sit and look at me all day in the shiny thing.  Ollie already told you how we wuz found, yeah?  I was so scared, and I’ve never stopped bein’ scared, even though we get so much love.  I bit Grammie the other day, and I felt bad.  I wanted her to pet me, but when she did, I just … bit her. I dunno why.  I think I’m a mean kittie, an’ I really don’t wanna be … I just get so scared.

Sometimes I do play, though.  I even take the mousie back to Miss Goose when she throws it for me!  She tells me I’m smart, and then I get all happy.  I got in trouble once.  Grammie had some flowers that Maha gave her and I knocked them off the shelf and the water went in some electric thingy and ruined it.  I got yelled at, but then Grammie said she was sowwy.Pandi-2


Boo

Boo-2Hi!  It’s me, Boo!  Booker T. Washington is my whole name, but folks around these parts just call me ‘Boo’.  Me ‘n Ollie, are the only normal moggies around here, but don’t tell that to the girls, ‘cause they get … well, you know how girls are.  I am educated … more than my sibs.  I love to read books … if Grammie or Mom-mom leave a book open, I’m on it!  Literally!  I even loves to sleep on books!  Annndddd … I can send emails and write notes!  One day I wrote a big long note on grammie’s computer when she forgot to close the lid.  I had more than 1200 letters in it!  I kinda got in trouble, though, ‘cause I typed the word ‘shit’.  😏

The humans?  Well, we all (mostly) love ‘em, but they’re weird about some things, like that word I just told ya.  Every time I call one of my sissies a bit–, I get squirted with the water bottle.  Heck, I learned the word from Grammie!

I like to play.  Do you like to play?  Wanna play wif me?  I gots a stick thingy wid feathers on the end and I loves it when people play that with me.  An’ my favourite thing is to pull the legs off o’ these things they call ‘crickets’.  Grammie yells and take them outside, but I like to play with ‘em.

Well … gotta run now … I see mom-mom left the lid up on her computer and fell asleep … gonna go write to my girlfwiend!  Tee hee …

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TigerTiger-2I am Tiger Lily and I am the most beautiful of all the kitties!  My fur is thick and fluffy, my tail is so fluffy that everyone who sees it wants it for their own.  And I am tiny and … what’s that other word?  Petite … I am petite and dainty.  I am not mean!  I just don’t like anybody else, for they are all inferior to moi!  I especially don’t like Nala, ‘cause she thinks she’s a princess and she tries to boss us.  So I attack her every chance I get!  I get squirted with the water bottle a lot.  😔

I only let Miss Goose hold me or pet me, and even then, not for long.  I don’t pick on Orange, though … none of us do, ‘cause he’s old and sick, so we all leave him alone.  Miss Goose named me Tiger, ‘cause I have such beautiful stripes!  An’ since my name is Tiger, I feel I must live up to the name and be vicious!  ROAR … 🐯

Grammie said she was gonna give me away a few weeks ago.  I don’t much like Grammie.  She calls me a bad word sometimes.  She did say she was sorry later, though.  I still don’t like her.  I almost shredded her hand and bit her too, one time when she tried to pet me.  Tee hee heeeeeTiger-1


IzzyIzzie-2My name is Izzybelly an’ … an’ … I askeered of you … ‘bye  💨


Sorry ‘bout that, folks, but Miss Izzy has some issues.  She lives under the sofa, only comes out on occasion, and has to be coaxed out twice a day to feed.  If we have visitors, it is often a full day before she can be lured out. Depending on which professional you believe, she has either the feline equivalent of Down Syndrome or Autism.  I lean more toward autism, but we will never know for sure.  And really, it doesn’t matter.  We just give her as much love as she will allow us to and make sure she eats.

So there you have it, folks, the Significant Seven in all their glory.  Once upon a time it was the Terrific Ten, then the Notorious Nine, then the Enduring Eight, and now the Sig-Seven.  All are rescue kitties and have their own special needs, some emotional, others physical.  At least once a day I threaten to trade the whole lot for a good dog, but the truth is that we love them dearly … and they know it, too!

One final note:  Please do NOT give Boo your email address, for he has been known to send ridiculously long, rambling emails!

Photo credits:  Natasha K. McClain (aka Miss Goose)