Friday, July 31, 2009

Economics 101 - FAIL

One of my fondest memories is watching John Rogers, the headmaster of Thomas Heyward Academy, pound his head on a cement block wall when Jasper County Chairman DP Lowther announced - "We were in the red but I borrowed more money so now we're in the black, and everything is good!"

What IS it with stupid people who don't understand how money works? Not even the basics?

The American public bailed out GM with money that it didn't have; it borrowed on future hopes and dreams, not reality. Then they started the "Cash For Clunkers" program that was supposed to go until November - which it didn't, it is already out of money as people have turned in their "old" and not-so-old cars to government-owned-and-operated GM for new cars and trucks. So now the government wants to borrow even more money to ensure that this program lasts, "because it is doing so well". WHAT THE FUCK?

Is no one thinking AT ALL?

Where is this money coming from, and will it ever be paid back - and by whom?

The whole idea for "trade in allowances" is so that the receiving dealership can make money on used car sales - either on their own lot or with sales to a broker. That won't happen, because the money forked out for these cars, FAR OVER THEIR ACTUAL WORTH, is gone. GM doesn't care, it isn't "their" money, it's the government's. The "buyer" doesn't care; s/he's got their cash and their brand new vehicle. Whether or not they will still have them, or be able to pay for them, six months down the road, doesn't matter. Whether they will have a job six months down the road, or even food to eat, doesn't matter. Deguvmint is givin dem money now bygod and they will take it, and the purty shiny new car too.

Thanks, I'll stick with my Toyotas. No government had to bail them out; quality vehicles that sold for far less than a GM plastic fantasy. Tough and impossible to kill, even with bullets in the radiator. Paid for and proud, no cost now, except taxes, tags and insurance. And the fuel to run them (not very often, I don't go anywhere much). Not for me the lure of increasing debt and then the inevitable casting off of the unusable, overly expensive GM albatross from around my neck, no thanks. I won't buy into the whole "gubbermint owes me a car, too!" scam being perpetrated on the stupid. Although I do know who will be eventually paying for it, just like Jasper County's dream of being in the black while delving ever deeper into taxpayers' pockets. Betcherass.

My beloved friend John must have concussed himself by now. Are people really this stupid? Yes, by god, they are. The Cash for Clunkers program is a success, oh, my yes indeed. Until the time comes - and it always does -to pay the piper.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

No Roller Coaster, thanks

Yesterday my next door neighbor came up to the house in a mild panic. She had gotten all of her stuff together to paint (oil-based) and - had forgotten brushes. She thought she had some big ones but didn't. It's a 40 mile trip one way to buy brushes, and she was in a hurry. Well of course we have brushes - tons of 'em, use 'em all the time since last year, fixing the place up. So we gave her some.

Then she is having karaoke at her bar this weekend and needed posters. Everyone in town now knows that I have a smashing art program and do great posters, so she asked me to make her six. I made 8 - just in case - and put them up around town for her.

My fee? Drinks at karaoke night of course! LOL

Contrast the busy working atmosphere and aggressive fun challenges of everyday life with the desperate and pathetic drama queens I'm used to dealing with, and the comparisons are stark.

I really did want to snatch them up, shake them by their collars and shriek in their pathetic faces, "SHADDUP! STOP WHINING!" - but then of course that made me 'mean', 'unsympathetic'. I don't understand the attraction of drama queens to others. They can't hold a job. They can't stay in school. They can't they can't they can't - do anything on their own. They'll see doctors endlessly and come up with different diagnoses every time - and different drugs. Then of course they get "addicted" to the drugs. (Bullshit. They don't know what an addiction IS.) Then of course they lie about not only their diagnoses but their drugs. Then they lie about their jobs. Then they lie about their lives. Then they lie about their motivations. They tell different lies to different people, never thinking that -hey - some of these people know each other and might talk to each other. When caught, they say they were misunnerstood - or blame it on the drugs, their desperation, etc. People whom they say were dying weren't even sick. Trips they had to take to save someone else were non-existent. Rapes and assaults that never occurred, could not have occurred, in the time frames they give. Lies, lies, and more lies to cover up those lies. It is a never ending fantasy life with them, and they drag people into it as rapidly and voiciferously as they can.

WHY do they do it? Because it works for them. They get the attention they so desperately need and demand, 24-7, from people who enable them as surely as some parents, friends and family enable drug addicts and drunks. There are always people around who NEED to play the strong and protective type, who NEED other peoples' endless dependence on them, who are gratified by the drama queens' endless helplessness and whining, lies and manipulations, because it makes them feel superior. And the Drama queens LET them feel superior, all the time thinking that everyone around them is soooo stupid to be manipulated - and that it is they, the queens, who are really superior. ("Look how many people I can get to buy into this crap, over and over again!") It is an endless and gripping, roller coaster fantasy world of mutual dependence and mutual disgust, mutual superiority and mutual disdain. The word "respect" - either self respect or respect for others - is lost in the endless drowning waves of self-indulgence and sympathy.

Yawn. So glad I'm out of that. My definition of passion is mutual respect, mutual effort, and mutual enjoyment. Those who need the endless Sturm und Drang, highs and lows, of dependence and desperate, whining, crying, lying, self pity and self-indulgence, are fooling themselves. But hey - whatever floats their boat. Straight-up and point blank is where I live. Don't like it? Need that soft cushion of lies, dependence, and simpering giggles? Go for it. Just don't make me listen to it. I have a real life, and real relationships, not founded on lies and self-delusion. Don't tell me you've found your permanent career (for the third time this year) or your One True Love for the fourth marriage. You bore me. Lie to yourself all you want. Just stop lying to me. We both know what you are.

Now, what should I wear to karaoke night? On with real life. At least when I pretend to be something I'm not, it's obvious, tongue-in-cheek, fun, and no one gets hurt.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

You have GOT to be kidding me...


There I was yesterday, talking with my daughter on the phone, having a good long conversation about any and everything. Suddenly the phone 'blipped', alerting me that there was someone else trying to call. I looked at the phone to see who it was.

The number was for someone 'back there'. Now, let me tell you about this person. For 20 years she was one of the nastiest, meanest, rudest, most backstabbing, lying people in my life. She thought she knew everything, especially about me. She accused me of everything under the sun. She even sat in front of my DH at my last meeting, making snide comments and calling me a liar out loud with her dau-in-law. She always insisted to everyone who ever listened that I was doing everything that I suppose she wished she could do - cheating, sneaking, and stealing. She was vicious and had no sympathy for anyone, ever, at any time - except herself. She was a "good churchgoing Christian woman"- the type that one would not attend any church she went to if one could help it, because her face was always in everyone else's, telling stories and shoving her own lack of self-respect and common decency in everyone else's faces. No matter how polite anyone was to her, she was adamant that she knew everything, and always demanded that she be catered to. Did she care that she hurt my children with her lies, or that she insulted my husband with them? Of course not! Did she feel anything for the friends of mine whom she harassed and did her best to insult or embarrass because they were my friends? Don't be silly. She couldn't care less.

So, over a year after I leave and go 1700 miles away, why on earth would this person track me down and try to call? I gave maybe three people back there my phone number... mainly because, between my 60-acre farm and my job responsibilites, I am rarely near a phone. Email is about the only way to reach me with any certainty.

One of my new local friends said it best "She misses you. A dysfunctional relationship is better than none at all. She's probably ran out of people to insult and torment. Why not invite her out to see the sights? Our area has a lot of places where bodies will never be found - and haven't been for YEARS."

See, that's what I like about where I live. Blunt speaking and honesty, and no false sweetness and light. Termagants aren't permitted to try to run peoples' lives out here - they are told off and put in their places.

I don't know why this poor, pathetic, purposefully cruel and vindictive creature suddenly, desperately, needs to speak to me. But I do know that she will get quite a shock if she calls back. Because, you see, I don't have to be polite or nice to her anymore, don't have to listen to her, don't have to put up with her rants or rudeness or self-righteousness any more.

The funny thing is that I have been good friends with her daughter for years and years. Her daughter is her mother's exact opposite - funny and fun and crazy, full of love and intelligence, and not afraid to speak her mind or show her affection. She has always been a bright spot in my life - and I never wanted to offend her, even though she knows exactly what her mother is. We simply don't discuss her mother, we just discuss things amongst ourselves and enjoy each other's company and emails and conversations. I don't judge her by her mother, just as she has never judged me by mine.

I'd hate to lose my friend. But if that phone rings again and it's her mother, what I will say to her will of course be repeated and exaggerated and embellished and lied about, like every other thing I've ever said to this cruel and vicious, hatefilled woman. But it will be said... and I will be laughing at her and enjoying every damned minute of it. You see, I don't have to put up with that sort of hysterical and vicious hate, that severe and open mental derangement any more that other people excuse as "just her way" - it may be sad and pathetic and just too bad, but it isn't my problem any more. And don't think that I won't let her know it, in no uncertain terms.

And if my daughter has to put up with her cruel crap, she won't hold back either. She's heard enough from this insanely jealous, insanely cruel woman all of her life that she has had enough, too.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Busy? No, TG, Not at All

And so life goes on.

Dad always said the old 'hole in the water' - If you ever think you matter, stick your hand in the water and pull it out. The hole that is left is how much you matter.

Which is totally what I expected - no matter what my friends said - and said that they wanted.

When one of my new friends asked what we were doing for the Fourth, I said, "the potluck picnic in the park and then the fireworks."

"So you don't have plans?"

I spent the last 20 years of my life having plans. Being at everyone else's beck and call. Going to their parties and having meetings, not being able to just sit back and enjoy food and desultory conversation. Not having many real friends, but only business acquaintances who wanted something. Being treated like I was "Special" even though they and I both knew I was not - they just wanted something. Or working to make sure everything went as planned, all of the people and things in the right places, all of the plans and meetings going off as scheduled and desired.

Unhappy? Desperately. I'd much rather sit around with some friends new and old and talk about plants and weather and places we've been and why we don't want to be there any more. Some new friends - a brand inspector and a cowboy - sat with us and told us about their adventures in Wyoming, Kansas, and Colorado - and why they came here and didn't ever want to leave. All of us at the table agreed it was the people that made the difference. Sure, scenery was nice, but the political crap and liberal garbage was draining and boring and ever-present. Better here where everyone thinks the same way, feels the same way, and appreciates the same things. Good food, honesty, and hard work. Quiet fun, not forced smiles and forced activities that no one really wants to do. NOT having to smile indulgently over other peoples' rude, ugly, and stupid whiny children and listen to their just as rude, ugly, stupid and whiny parents gush about them. Here, children are seen and not heard - they go play and don't bother the grownups. You can appreciate them and their parents' parenting skills even more, when the kids all say, "Yes, mam" and "No, mam" and "Excuse me, mam". Had my kids been raised here, they would have fit right in, not been considered freaks like they were back east, polite and honest and never intrusive.

So, yeah, as I fade into the sunset and other peoples' memories, no longer a "threat" to their insecurities, I fade quickly out of their lives and mutual and shared hysterias and fanaticisms. I disappear off of their minds and Facebook pages and forums and blogs. And I am content to do so. Now I'm just "the lady with the white fence with roses on it". The lady who does ceramics in her basement. The lady with the wild garden and the strangely painted boxes that scoot between the rows of her garden, where the chickens cluck and scratch. Or even just the school secretary. I am no one, and no one needs or demands anything from me any more. Thank God.

Glad to be that hole in the water, glad to be that empty space so quickly filled in with the gush and roll of nonentity. Glad to be with people who really do think and act and behave and believe as I, who don't need to be cosseted and cared for and handed their lives on a silver platter, because they have no idea what to do with them and never did. Glad to be very far away from those miserable, angry, and pathetic people who can only feel empowered when they lie and cheat and steal and grind others underneath them and their sick and sickening desires.