coffee pot posts, Coronavirus Chronicles, depression/anxiety, Rants

Saturday morning snow post

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Not much snow, the way I like it. REALLY cold for North Carolina, though. 24 degrees F at 10:50 a.m. What is notable about this snow is that this year I see many tracks that I suspect are fox tracks. Critters really love to live under that building, and in the space between the ceiling and the roof. Sandy and I are talking about cleaning it out to use for studio space again. I’m not sure that I have the energy for that, but it will need to be cleaned out before we move anyway. I’ll have to find the energy from somewhere!

Here’s what I plan to work on this weekend:

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Anyway, not much has happened in my life other than work. It’s been really busy at work with several big areas of my job needing attention at once. That’s the way my job is – really busy then not much at all to do. I spread out the work as much as I can. The good thing is that I enjoy the work I am doing right now, which is mostly schedule planning and graduate student admissions. Later this semester it will be forms, forms, forms.

I complained (okay, ranted) on Facebook about people who do not read emails from me that are clearly marked URGENT and/or IMPORTANT. This is mostly a problem with students but faculty and instructors are sometimes guilty also. It has been bad for the last decade but the problem has quadrupled with the stress of covid brain. I work hard on these emails to make them as clear and detailed as they can possibly be. I keep templates of the ones that come up regularly and revise them as needed, so I know that people have understood them just fine in the past. Then to have three people ask me a week after they miss an important deadline that I do not set…that they don’t know what the date is…they seem to remember me sending something out…I mean, literally, all I do is copy and paste my answer from the email to their questions. Sometimes the answer is right below their question. And in this case, and most cases, it’s not hard stuff. “How do I do this?” “Click the link in the email that I sent where I wrote, click this link for instructions.” I don’t know how to help these students who ignore my help!

Then there are the students who need repeated confirmation. This seems to be a newish thing too. “Just to confirm, did you really mean this?” Yes, I did, just like I meant it when we also talked about it a week ago.

I’ve never had a lot of patience, but I do try very hard to swallow the irritation and be compassionate. My brain ain’t so great either these days. I will, however, search my computer, email, and the university website before I ask someone else for information I have lost. I hear a lot from the faculty who are struggling as well. What do you do when you are stressed to the limit but your students are too? I read articles online about how universities who are concerned about their budgets and student retention tend to ignore the stress of their employees, offering little other than online “how to cope” workshops, as if our stress does not affect the students. It’s a big problem on a national level, but in states like North Carolina where the ultra-conservative Republicans in charge dismiss us as either a drain on state funds or fomenters of dangerous liberal radicalism (especially in history), it is getting to a crisis point. As my therapist and others said, our bodies are not built to deal with this kind of sustained stress.

One of the latest issues where I work is that the college has decided to reduce the number of semesters students have to take in foreign language without notifying or involving the department of languages in their decision. Now, I tend to be on the side of reducing the semesters because it is a lot compared to our peers, but not to confer with the department of languages is incredibly disrespectful.

It feels very cutthroat where I work right now, but at least I feel that my co-workers and I are safe from budget cuts at this time. The delay in telling us what exactly those cuts will be is bothersome. The communication between administration and academic departments is terrible.

“As a service to you, take this workshop that Human Resources bought from an outside vendor on how to do more with less. Here’s some required training about how you can provide mental health care to students. We’re sure that you can fix yourselves and your students through the magic of the Internet. Oh, your job doesn’t include counseling? You’re extremely depressed, yourself? You think you should be paid more for taking on more responsibility? Feel lucky that you are employed at all.”

It’s gotten where the satire on McSweeney’s is more and more on the mark.

Pablocito sez, “Get that camera away from me!”

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augggghhhh, Coronavirus Chronicles, critters, Rants

Is it Wednesday?

Hard to remember any more. I have to use a calendar these days to keep track of days. Now that Sandy is retired he has particular problems with not having a steady schedule, and I’ve encouraged him to start keeping a digital calendar, although any kind would do as long as he looks at it every morning.

Warning – long rant ahead. I might have to write two blog posts today.

Monday Diego went back to the vet and it was expensive and I had to leave him, which I do not like to do, especially these days. He didn’t produce enough urine for a urinalysis even after they pumped him with fluids so they didn’t charge for the urinalysis BUT I paid almost $40 for the fluids. So far I’ve spent about $800 on Diego this month, not including special foods and pill pockets. And it will most likely continue because he is on a very expensive anti-histamine now. Doc says that after this week I can alternate them with Claritin to bring the expense down. I am giving him nose drops, one in each nostril. This is fun. I’m putting this off because DREAD but as soon as I finish my coffee I will do it again. I have to get my technique down because I wasted a lot of it yesterday.

He is STILL stuffy, but it is better.

One thing that the vet suggested which has me reeling is the possibility that we have black mold in our house. This is very, very possible. All you have to do is look at the stains on the ceiling tiles in my bedroom to understand. The leak was fixed years ago, but…  to take care of that mold, my friends, would eat up my retirement plans and money. And, wow, I just killed a winged ant. Is it a termite?

So I am not well pleased today.

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I also was furious at the vet’s office when first I had to ask the staff member at the front who showed us to an exam room to put on her mask, then later a vet tech returned Diego to me after his blood panel and the vet tech did not have on a mask. When the vet, who IS always masked as far as I’ve been able to tell, told me that I needed to leave Diego and pick him up later, I asked her to make sure that the vet techs wore masks around him, SINCE HE CAN’T WEAR A MASK, and he is asthmatic! She looked surprised and said that everyone wore masks in the back, and I informed her that this tech did not.

(In case you are not a cat person and don’t know, cats can contract Covid-19 and die from it.)

Then later, as I waited in an exam room for him to be returned to me, I could see through the window in the door to the back area. Very clearly I saw this same tech handling another cat without a mask on, assisting the vet. So she is either lying, or she is totally oblivious to the humans around her. The latter is a possibility, but I doubt it. I stood there for 15 minutes, becoming angrier by the minute, watching this tech walk back and forth, maskless, interacting with other staff and animals.

Finally when he brought Diego in his carrier to me at the front desk, he had on a mask. I said, “I hope you had on that mask when you handled my cat.”

This maskhole said, “Of course!”

“Because I watched you in the back room handling other cats and you did not wear a mask,” I spat out, grabbed up my poor kitty, and marched out.

I really cannot abide a fucking liar.

I barely slept that night because I was so pissed off and conflicted. Then my phone woke me and it was the vet. She sounded so kind and concerned and helpful that suddenly I felt no anger. Obviously I’ve not let go of it because here I am ranting over it, but I do not want to change vet practices again if I can help it. What do I do? She has a great reputation, but her staff sucks. I left this practice once, and then they worked Diego in during an emergency when another practice would not see him. And veterinary workers are burning out in great numbers from the stress. I know, partially because I have a friend who is a vet that works at an emergency clinic. So maybe she has to be tolerant to be able to continue her practice.

What makes all this even more strange is that they went way over what they needed to do last year. Granted, the staff seemed pretty clueless in late March 2020 when I overheard one of them say as I walked out, “Did you hear what she said? She knows someone whose husband died of Covid!” Then when I went back in early April, everyone had on masks, they were selling masks, and then later they changed to pick-up/drop-off in the parking lot only.

Now, this attitude.

I’m looking for gluten-free canned food that Diego will eat. Today and yesterday, Fancy Feast Turkey and Giblets pate was a hit. Tomorrow, who knows. These cats usually wait for me to buy more than two cans of anything before they decide that, no thanks, they’d rather eat plastic. They love the Pill Pockets so far, crossing fingers, but I looked at the ingredients and you guessed it – wheat gluten. The vet recommended them though – I’m confused. My friends are suggesting homemade chicken and rice, including chicken organ meats that a farmer friend says that she can help with this spring.

Okay, time for the nose drops. Hopefully I won’t have to do this for more than a week.

augggghhhh, Coronavirus Chronicles, Rants

Monday mope

Well, it was…a rough week and a busy social weekend and it’s only Monday and I’m exhausted. I look at what everyone else does and it amazes me that I’m exhausted when I do so much less than they do, yet they keep on truckin’.

Good news: this weekend I reconnected with weavers from our local guild, and got out to see and shop a couple of craft shows, including one at Providence Farm, where I’ve been meaning to go for a long time now. I ate at three great restaurants, INSIDE (ackkkkkk, so nerve wracking), and others paid for my meals! Sandy repaired our dryer and so I was able to get caught up on laundry. Not much else happened as far as art or house cleaning. I did some cooking and had a little more energy. The Christmas break is much anticipated.

Not so good news: I finally took Diego to the vet. He has asthma. He needs dental work. It will be expensive, again. His prescription food was changed and so far they both like it (knocking wood). A week ago Sandy tried to go to his doctor for a med check and about multiple problems like his persistent cough that keeps getting worse, probably polymyositis related, but it needs evaluating. They sent him away to get a Co-vid test so he couldn’t go back for an appointment until late today. (It wasn’t Co-vid. He’s had this cough for years.)

Embarrassing news: Today I was looking forward to seeing the video that was posted on YouTube about the exhibition my collage was in this summer. I got treated to about a full minute (out of about 8 minutes!) of it falling down and the installation team repairing my hanging wire and sighing and saying, “When an exhibition says that the art has to be ready to hang…this is why your art has to be ready to hang.” Well, it hung on my wall; what can I say. I’m not posting the link to it because now I am embarrassed and I don’t understand why they included all that in the film when I didn’t even know that it happened. At least they blurred out my name on the back, but instead of being excited now I have tears in my eyes. Gah. It’s a nice documentary other than that. A small glitch in the scheme of things, but I’m not having a good week and I’m hurt that they didn’t consider my feelings.

Terrible news: a vivacious friend of ours who lives in Japan died suddenly this week. We missed him anyway, but he usually came back to town during the holidays and visited friends, and now we will never see him again. He was a major extrovert and entertainer so he had many, many friends and acquaintances who loved him. More terrible news: a PhD student died this week also. Four people I knew died within one month. The other two deaths weren’t surprises, but the unexpected ones made me dwell a bit on this quote from The Lord of the Rings.

“‘I wish it need not have happened in my time,’ said Frodo.

‘So do I,’ said Gandalf, ‘and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.'”

We would never have thought back when we read these books that this quote would so directly relate to us toward the ends of our lives.

And how will we decide what to do, when to do it, and how to do it? How will we manage our health related problems within a health system that only works for the rich? In a country where the working class often has to choose between rent, medication, insurance premiums, childcare, and food? And what do you do when violent people are able to act with impunity, and are encouraged by those in power to attack those who disagree with them? What do you do when governments and corporations with the ability to help the environmental problems refuse to acknowledge that there are problems they have to address for human civilization to continue on this planet?

I had terrible nightmares early this morning and had a full-on panic attack from the first one, heart pounding, heavy breathing from the running I was doing in my dream. I can barely think about the fascism that is being embraced by a minority in this country and who seem to be succeeding in taking power.

I think that I’m going to have to go back to therapy. Hopefully I’ll be able to stay off the anxiety meds.

 

Coronavirus Chronicles, Rants

Julia Sugarbaker

I love Julia Sugarbaker.

I went full Julia Sugarbaker on a housekeeping employee in the building yesterday. (At first I thought full “Karen,” but I feel sorry for the undeserving Karens of the world that got popped with this denigration of their names.) Every morning I see this man, working inside our building, with a mask hanging off his ear or on his chin, sometimes shouting at another employee on the next floor up or down the hall. Now that the semester is in full swing and the building is full of students, faculty, and staff, I decided to say something to him since obviously no one else had. Yesterday morning I walked in and he had on a plastic face shield and no mask. He said that his supervisor had told them that a face shield was enough.

Well. I tried. I explained to him that UNCG required all their employees and students to wear masks indoors, and it applies to housekeeping as well. I told him that I had two family members who are immuno-compromised so I was wearing a double mask or N-95 to work every day. He said that he understood, that he had three family members at risk. That’s when I started to lose my temper. “So you should be wearing a mask anyway!” I interrupted.

He said, “Well, everybody’s gotta do what they gotta do,” and that was exactly the response that bugs me more than anything in this world.

“No,” I said. “None of this ‘everybody’s gotta do’ stuff. We are employees at UNCG and UNCG requires us to wear masks inside. Period. It’s not a choice.” He then turned and walked into a small room with vending machines where a couple of students were seated.

I got on the elevator, and when I got off on my floor, our sweet housekeeper was wearing a face shield with her mask on her chin. I explained to her that she needs to wear her mask, and she said that she was told that the face shield was enough. I told her that was mistaken, and she wore her mask for the rest of the day.

My supervisor got on the phone and email with the higher ups in the facilities department and hopefully it has been straightened out, although I did not see the guy on the first floor this morning. I can count on our housekeeper to do what is right, as long as she is not misinformed. I think this is what makes me the maddest – that they put her in jeopardy. And the example for the students is terrible. Why some people think that rules do not apply to them baffles me. We are provided with free vaccinations, masks, sanitizer, and weekly testing on campus. We have health insurance. There’s a Walgreens one block away that gives free vaccinations. There are no excuses for our employees not to comply with the health rules here.

So I went down a “Designing Women” rabbit hole and rediscovered one of the best sitcoms of the 80s-90s.

I don’t remember what led up to this rant, but I think that they had been at a conference and there may have been a lot of gossip?

But this clip might be one of my favorites:

This is the monologue that most people remember, from very early in the series:

This one is from the pilot. This take-down comes back to bite her in the ass later on. It reminded me of a girls night out in my own life, when one of the women at our table told the guys that walked up to us, “I’m sorry, we don’t speak English.” They left very confused.

She had her times when she was wrong. This is the absolute angriest Julia rant that ever aired:

Well, this could go on all day, but here’s one I didn’t remember that is golden:

Here’s an interesting fact about Dixie Carter and proof of her brilliant acting and comedic chops: she was actually a conservative. Julia Sugarbaker was a loud and proud liberal and Dixie hated doing her political rants, but she loved to sing. Later she made a deal with the producers that for every liberal rant she had to do, she would get to sing a song on the show.

I’m not always proud of my Julia Sugarbaker moments, but I am glad that I do not have the personality to tolerate bullshit or lies, either. One time that I was glad that I had the JS gene was when I spoke before the board of directors at Deep Roots, during the dark time when they had a mean, incompetent store manager and the BOD changed the mission of the cooperative.  I was proud of that speech, and I burnt the hell out of that manager. Later the BOD finally understood what was happening to the financials and the manager was fired, only to be hired at another local coop that he ran out of business. Today, Deep Roots is strong and has a great manager who has stabilized it and set it on the path to growth again.

Coronavirus Chronicles, depression/anxiety, Rants, Reading

Sunday afternoon

I don’t know about you, but I feel like I need to put a title on each post and I seldom try to come up with something witty or appropriate to what I have written any more. What I noticed when I went through almost every one of my posts last year was that sometimes I wondered what day of the week it was when I wrote it. So instead of leaving the title blank, I usually name it with the day of the week.

Yesterday I got some stuff done. Getting anything done is significant progress. I picked up popcorn shrimp burritos from Fishbones – so delicious – and did a bit of grocery shopping at Bestway. Normally I shop at my coop, but Bestway has Smithwick’s ale and some frozen dinners that Sandy likes for when I just can’t cook or even eat. They have some organic and local foods too and it’s right beside Fishbones. I cooked a good simple dinner with marinated baked chicken, brown rice, peas and corn.

I haven’t been to the farmers’ market in ages. I just can’t make myself leave the house that early on Saturday morning. It’s very important that I have the weekends to sleep in and catch up since even melatonin and Xanax can’t get me to sleep some nights before 2 or 3 a.m. Once they start staying open after 11 a.m. I might be able to manage it.

It was cold after that storm front came through but the plants that I moved outside seemed to survive without damage. Today it will go back up to the 60s for the highs this week so I hope to stir up some enthusiasm for gardening.

Early yesterday evening, we went through the FEMA drive through vaccination clinic in the Four Seasons Mall parking lot. We found out that they were doing the Pfizer vaccine, but it would still be quicker to do that one and have to come back for the second shot than to wait for the one dose Johnson & Johnson. This has repercussions for Sandy, who most likely needs to get on immune-suppressive meds ASAP, but can’t do that until after he is fully vaccinated. He is not feeling well at all, but no side effects from the vaccine. His second shot is scheduled on April 10, so I’m not sure if we will go to the lake Easter weekend.

I spent some time weaving on “Cathedral,” so that is a very good thing. Today we will both try to pitch in and get laundry and vacuuming done. Laundry is harder than you might think since we have to catch a lot of the rinse water in buckets and dump it out side. The cat hair is at disaster level. I combed several handfuls of Diego’s undercoat fur out this morning. Pablocito doesn’t have that much.

My mood is also lifted because I am considering going alone to Ireland in September for an artist residency if my family can’t manage the trip to Portugal. I have the plane ticket from Boston to Dublin. They have waited to buy tickets until they see how things pan out. This would be at the same place where I had planned to go this past summer, on the Wild Atlantic Coast on the western edge of Ireland.

I have to be careful not to get my hopes up too high for this trip, though. The ride down that emotional hill was pretty rough last year, plus having all this worries on top of that.

I’m reading “Enduring Love” by Ian McEwan right now. A very disturbing book, and although I can’t put it down, I am ready for it to be over with. This was a freebie, and I suspect that I picked it up out of a free bin to use the cover in collage. I always try to read these books first. This is the first novel that I have read of his.

One thing I accomplished this past week was filing our 2020 taxes online. We STILL have not received our 2019 refund. I finally called our Congressperson’s office and the staff person put me in touch with the local taxpayer advocate volunteer service. However, they can’t do anything about it either until somebody puts the information in the IRS database. The staff person said that a lot of people who mailed in their returns are experiencing the same thing.

It also means that we didn’t get the last round of stimulus payments. I was able to roll that into the 2020 tax refund. Hopefully we will get the next round. I am going to use it to make some repairs to the house – mainly the front steps to make them safer. Because we live in a historic district, we have to get a certificate of appropriateness and use a special kind of brick if we go with that option.

Doing the taxes is frustrating because there is one tiny thing on our return that requires us to choose an answer to a question, and neither answer is correct. That’s why we mailed it in last year. Then this year there was that AND at the end a series of required responses about last year’s return that were not applicable. The Turbo Tax person told me to check them all and e-file it. No freaking way I am mailing that sucker in this year.

In the meantime, I read that the IRS chooses to audit a much higher percentage of lower and middle class tax returns instead of the tax returns of the rich because they are more complicated, so the rich get away with paying billions of dollars less than they are supposed to pay.

I am so disgusted with this government and the voters who can’t see how they are being abused by income inequality. They are so worried about somebody getting some government money to feed themselves or get health care who might not deserve it in their eyes, but it’s okay to cut taxes for the people and corporations who make so much money that they would not miss millions of dollars in taxes paid.

Okay, political rant over. Time to do some house cleaning and tapestry weaving.

augggghhhh, coffee pot posts, Coronavirus Chronicles, depression/anxiety, Rants, Reading

Saturday noon coffee pot post

The church bells are chiming out twelve rings as I begin writing this post. Now they are playing hymns, which never ceases to annoy me but not quite as much as it used to. I know the words to many of these hymns and I am prone to hymn earworms, and a lot of them remind me of the loss of my parents, which makes me sad.

This has been a rough week, no lie. I have been trying not to whine and complain, especially on Facebook. I have written a little here, and a lot more privately. So be warned, this is going to be a long whining post.

Sandy went to see his GP on Monday, and she immediately diagnosed him with shingles. She said that it was good that he finally came in, because it was getting to the point where it couldn’t be treated? I put a question mark there because I was getting a lot of information from him second hand, and even in normal times he is terrible with remembering details correctly. She didn’t pay attention much to the story of his muscle weakness and attributed everything, including his respiratory issues, to shingles. She sent him off with prescriptions for an anti-viral and Tramadol. We were relieved to at least have a diagnosis, since we both suspected a staph infection, which could have been worse. I think that we leapt to that idea because we have relatives who have been critically ill with staph infections, one of which came from a cat scratch and Sandy had a very light scratch near the rash.

The Tramadol didn’t do much to help his pain so I began doing research, started him taking acetaminophen along with it, and reached out to my friend Missy, who is the queen of pain. I don’t say that lightly. Missy has Type I diabetes and “stiff person syndrome,” which is about the most painful disease that you could imagine. She also has a PhD and knows a lot about medicine. She powers through every day and still exercises and runs as much as she is able. I trust her opinion more than most doctors. She said that Tramadol was not the right kind of pain medicine to relieve the nerve pain of shingles and that he needed to take gabapentin. Then I reached out to another friend who has had shingles FOUR times. He said that Lyrica, which is similar to gabapentin but with more side effects, was the only medicine that helped his pain.

Yet, I could not get Sandy to call the doctor’s office back and request gabapentin. I did find him some alternative pain relievers that helped a little more. By Friday morning, I was done with this reluctance to call. I try very hard not to manage Sandy’s health issues, but something had to be done. So he gave me permission to call his doctor’s office, and they called in gabapentin and I picked it up from the pharmacy. Then he had an audio doctor’s visit with the nurse practitioner that he usually sees and likes a lot. I sat in on that so that I could provide information and timelines (his biggest problem is time perception) and we talked to the NP about his muscle weakness, when it began, and what he should do.

I asked him if it was possible that muscle weakness from shingles could begin so far in advance of the rash, and he said that would be very, very weird. So Sandy is going in for lab work on Monday, and if they can’t find some diagnosis from that, he will be referred to a neurologist and maybe physical therapy. Thank GOD.

Of course, we still have to get him vaccinated! And me, but my workplace is going to take care of that in March, hopefully.

Work has been ridiculous. I mean nutso. This is always my busiest time of the entire year, but the university decided to move up the deadline to enter the fall 2021 schedule in the database system, basically saying that they expected things to be back to normal in fall and they want students in the classrooms as much as possible. Then, late Wednesday afternoon, we were given new directives for Co-vid protocols, which meant that we had to go back to the faculty, talk to them, and then move about half of our classes to online or hybrid. In addition, I discovered that most of the new classroom capacities will not fit our mid-size classes at the limits that the provost gave us. Even some of the hybrids, after being split in thirds or half, are going to have problems with finding rooms large enough. So I expect to have to revisit this again.

In the meantime I feel like I am crying in the wilderness, with nobody listening about the classroom problem. I’m having problems getting the decision makers to make all the decisions that need to be made.

The deadline was supposed to be Monday at 5 p.m. They moved it ahead two days to Wednesday, which would be doable on my end if others do what they need to do.

And that is only PART of the work craziness. There’s another work issue that kept me awake last night.

Most of the schedule entry is done, though, so now that I’ve written about it I’m going to try to put it out of my head for the weekend. I will be SO GLAD to retire from this job.

In the middle of all this, I turned sixty years old. I made us a shrimp/broccoli/feta pasta dish on Valentine’s Day and a huge pan of lasagna for my birthday that we’ve been eating for three days. Talenti gelato for dessert. That has worked out. When we get on the other side of this thing, we’ll go out to Full Moon Oyster Bar for a seafood feast.

What I really, really, really want to do is sleep through every bit of this, but I am doing my best to keep on keeping on. Now that I’ve turned sixty, insurance will cover my shingles vaccination and I plan to get that ASAP. I also know that if shit really hits the fan, and I have to be a caretaker or have a nervous breakdown or just finally give up on the logic of administrative bureaucrats and say FUCK IT, I could get 85% of my pension and still get my health insurance. I can’t afford to retire until I can add Social Security on to that, but I could attempt to find another job. At 60. In a pandemic. HAH.

I finished Paper Wife by Laila Ibrahim last night and now back to the denser The Silver Swan. I highly recommend Paper Wife, especially right now when you may have monkey mind and are feeling down. It is an easy, fast read.

I should also say that I have been absolutely overwhelmed with emails, and ones that I normally read with joy are getting deleted unread, sometimes over a hundred at a time. I don’t want to unsubscribe to newsletters or unfollow my friends’ blogs but I can’t manage reading the newsletters and blogs that I normally do right now. Also, if I have promised to send you “beautiful beans” or other things, I am really sorry for the delay but I do still plan to send them before it is time to plant.

I got caught up on some household tasks this morning, including cleaning Bernie’s water bowls. One was particularly nasty because it sits on the floor of the cage and is shaped like a boat with a mirror on it. My guess is that it is supposed to be a bird bath. Someone in my dreams last night told me to make sure that the animals had water, especially Bernie. So that is done. I’m going to drink a lot more water today also, take a walk, and do some weaving.

Rants

01-07-21

I suppose I should say something about the events yesterday, since it was perhaps the most shameful day of political treason in my lifetime.

As I’ve said, nothing much surprises me any more. I figured that there would be riots in D.C. and elsewhere yesterday, because Twitler and his minions have been calling for insurrection for so long.

However, this actually surprised me: Video posted on Twitter of Capitol Police opening barricades.

I don’t speak badly of the police in general – it’s a hard job and somebody has to do it, and usually I am grateful for them. I knew that in recent years (hell, for all I know, decades or always) police departments and the military have been deliberately infiltrated by white supremacists and far right extremists.

As a whole, I don’t like to denigrate an entire group of people based on the actions of what I hope are a few. As a white Southerner, I have been on the receiving end of this kind of prejudice. I’m not looking for sympathy – it’s just a fact. People assume I’m a racist or stupid. Racists come up to me and say outrageous shit and I have to shut them down. I’ve had people admit that they thought that I was stupid when they first met me because of my accent.

But, really? A force of 2,000 Capitol police, not prepared for riots despite the open calls for them, letting it rioters through barricades, taking selfies inside, arresting only 52 people so far, allowed the goddamned Capitol to be invaded? Every fucking one of them should be fired and start over, beginning with their chief. And then a purge should be made in every police department in this country. (Update three days later: I realize that some Capitol police were extraordinarily brave in the face of an overwhelming mob. I don’t know how you ferret out the complicit police from the good ones, but it has to be done.)

If Pence and a majority of the Cabinet doesn’t invoke the 25th amendment by the end of today, I’ll know for certain that my days as an American citizen will be intentionally numbered.

Cowards are resigning and reneging instead of doing what is required – removing this menace to the entire world from office today. Let’s hope that they have changed the nuclear codes.

If you don’t agree, I don’t care, and I don’t want to hear your opinion. It won’t be posted.

Okay, that is my political rant for today. Tomorrow snow is expected. It is my office day. I hope to go for a walk in it, even if campus closes.