Saturday, December 19, 2009

Howard Zinn's People's History is being shown on The History Channel

I posted about this on my Face Book page too! I don't think I will ever get to much of many stories. I like stories by story tellers. I like to tell stories too. Howard Zinn's People's History is a perspective that sorely needs to be heard over and over. I saw Howard Zinn in Berkeley several years ago perform his People's History with some famous and not famous personalities. I was inspired by the stories and disappointed upon hearing them that what I learned in school growing up was so much different, so concocted and shaped by those in power who don't want it known that fight isn't over for our Republic. There is still a class fight going on with health care reform, our military rules, War!, and all that those 1% who control the 90% of this countries wealth! We live in a great country, but what has taken place since the Declaration of Independence including the Constitution of the United States is what the land owners of those times and the affluent of our times have sought to keep to themselves, not to share with the rest of us and than means the other 99% of us who work and toil so that a corporation can make make money for it's shareholders and continue to rob from us!

Have I mentioned that I am moving again?

I'm in this house that I moved into with house mates, both of whom no longer live here since they both had issues that did not fit with living with other people. One was either a narcissist and the other a prescription drug addict living under the guise of being sober for 21 years, yet apparently his behavior had not matured along with his anniversary from drinking. He was asked to move and I was left here to find two new house mates. I have found that this house if inadequate for myself and others and it why it is so tough to find someone else to live here. Also, the market of renters is mostly much younger than I and none of them wants to live with an old guy. They want to live with people they might have something in common with. I imagine to much of my time and think that were I 25, I wouldn't want to entertain living with a 60 year old anyone. To much difference.

So I have been looking for place to rent, shares and think I have found a place and person that will work in North Portland. I turned in my application with a $45 non refundable fee and got the results today in the form of a call from the man with which I intend to rent from. It is a rough space, a basement with a room. It is all sealed off and I get to use the basements additional space too. The sleeping room is larger than the one in this house. The only draw back is that it is a basement, not a room with a view. I might be able to position my computer in such a way that I can gave up out the small windows. The rent is $360 a month with a $50 security deposit. Wow, I'm thrilled. I'm feeling the spirits of giving, peace, serenity and love all embracing me. I have been blessed again on my journey for freedom and independence! I have about two weeks off. That started last night after I left the bus yard about 8 pm. I am feeling really good. Hope everyone has Great Experiences this Holiday Season.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

I got some good info from my union shop steward and she tells it like it is

One she told me I have to keep my mouth shut so I don't get fired. She's right about that. The company is trying to weed out anyone who might pose a threat to their ability to divide and conquer the drivers and other employees. She also told me the information I compiled citing NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) about safety issues in our yard was so well put together it scared my executive committee member and pushed her away from me. That was my second attempt to get my union, my representatives to file an OSHA complaint against the company. They have yet to do so.

Then tonight I went to the union meeting for the second month in a row. Last month I attempted to submit a motion to look into the safety issues at the company yard, but was told that agenda was being suspended to pass out gift cards to members in a drawing. That kind of pissed me off. So this week, I attend with a written motion because business is conducted with motions. I introduced it under new business and she acted like I had no leg to stand on. I had the motion written up and I had highlighted pages showing what I was bringing in the motion. She said they look into it. Of course, the administrator who was running the meeting told me we couldn't vote on it and I asked if they didn't operate under Roberts Rules and she yes, yet Yet she didn't read the motion nor ask for a second or discussion. I don't get it and the steward that I have had issues with told me to shut up using the F word and told him that was abusive I wasn't talking to him. He has a chip on his shoulder concerning me or he fears me because he doesn't understand me. He is almost totally involved in a recovery program and is one fo those folks who can't seem to accept the fact that I am no longer involved. It isolates me from people who can't think beyond the limitations imposed by the box or are thinking linearly. Then I moved my seat and he pulled that your getting to close crap. We were in a cafeteria opposite sides of the table. He's had his chances, I'm done with him, trouble is I still might need as a shop steward.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

We had a field trip to a couple of malls for the choir of a middle school and...

there were two buses on this pick up drive and return. I was in bus #2 and my pal from the same HTS route was in bus #1. We discussed this trip the day before and neither of us had been to the destination stores and we determined that we would ask the adults on board our buses the best place to drop them off. He had no problem with his adults, they were quite happy to direct him for the safest drop off orientation. I had two adults on my bus and the daughter of the music director who was not on either bus, but in her van since she was apparently incapacitated. One of the adults was sitting in the back and the other about 3 seats back from my position. We were going to Nordstroms in the Lloyd Center and when we were close at Halsey and 7th I asked her where Norstroms is and got a response I did not expect. She told me on previous trips that the drivers talked on the radio and why wasn't I doing that? I told her it was not allowed and she must have doubted my word right there. We weres at a stop sign and she barked out in a loud terse voice "Turn Right Here!" And when I didn't act immediately on her command she once again blasted me with the command "Turn Right Here!" I was startled that this adult whom I had already given cell phone # to in case we could not stay parked at the drop was using an agitated almost hysterical voice command with me who had just only asked for help. She explained that she had been coming to this event for 8 years and she expressed surprise that I didn't know where Nordstroms is. Well, I got my bearings after looking at my map page that I had planned on and made the turn and already figured out we were turning left on Multnomah and again left on 9th Ave. But of course, she couldn't let it rest and again barked to me "Turn left at the Signal!" I responded with I've got it, I see the other bus etc. and she apparently interpreted that as my being curt with her. When we got to the drop point I said very calmly that I thought maybe I would not be able to stay parked there and she told me most authoritatively that I most certainly not be able to. As it turned out I was able to park there leaving my hazard lights on. I then went across the street to chat with the other driver and was telling him of my unruly passenger when my phone rang. It was the book agent for our trip and she asked me what had happened on my bus that a woman had called to complain about my curt attitude and apparently the woman went on and on about what a horrible bus driver I am and that I was lost and didn't know my way around. The booking agent told me to extend the utmost courtesy to this woman because she could be a school board member as though I hadn't already extended the utmost courtesy. It is always such a thrill to hear from a boss when on a trip and is not even half way completed and being told that I am not acting professionally, that they are this woman's word over mine knowing that the complaints to praises ratio at our yard is 314/12. I got a call about 5 minutes from the time the passengers were going to come out as I expected since I'd extended my self above the expected before leaving the school and it was not the woman, but the music director and I was myself, just as I had been with the woman who was offended that I didn't know where the entrance to Nordstroms is. We loaded up and it was if nothing had happened, yet the woman had what seemed like a smug little smile on her face as though she had really been right and she showed me. I am now being very careful and treading carefully with her. When we got to the other destination Jantzen Beach I asked if anyone knew where Burlington Coat Factory was and she said turn left here for the main mall. I did that, saw the #1 bus and all was well, except we couldn't unload the passengers without a phone call from the music director to her daughter. After that they onloaded and bus #1 and I parked in the open part of the parking lot away from the busy sections. I once again went to his bus and when I got there he said ""I overheard a couple of my adults saying "I'm glad we have the good bus driver!"" Well, I told him I guess that adult on my bus had a headache and he suggested maybe she was just pissed off at me because of her husband and her relationship. When it was time to leave the daughter of the music director told me we couldn't leave without a call from her mom. The other bus began pulling away and I said because the other bus was leaving, but she hadn't got a call. I know at that point they were playing a game with me that only they knew the rules of because then they both said at the same time, "oh we just got the wave to go." No phone call and the music director was no where to be seen, she had left first. Bus #1 took a right turn and I followed him and the woman said, where are you going, the exit is straight ahead where that long line of cars is?" I said I was following the other bus, the path of least resistance, like water. I don't know what she thought of that. It turns out on of the adult chaperones on bus #1 is an off duty sheriff deputy and he knows a better way out. It was true, there were hardly any cars and there is an entrance to I 5 South right off the parking lot, no traffic lights. I think even the woman with the headache was surprised into not admitting that she didn't know about that entrance to the highway. Traffic was tough and another driver on the radio commented it was a parking lot right where we were going to be driving through. We managed and we got to our home to school pick up point on time after dropping these folks off. People are unpredictable and obviously bus drivers and others who transport other people are looked down upon by some of the population. Sometimes these down lookers get on our transportation systems and sometimes they are rude and talk down to us like we are their servants and know nothing of our jobs. That is not to say everyone is like that, it is few and far between usually, except I was a little sensitive since I had had a written complaint about a month ago from a teacher that was accompanying her students on another trip. These are the only complaints I've been notified about, so I feel pretty good about my manner and capabilities.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Have you ever thought you saw, but when you checked nothing

I was sitting at my computer this evening and I will swear on a document that I saw someone pass by my bedroom door that was open 1/4 of the way. That feeling came over me, the one when I feel as though I am not quite sitting here in 2009. Then that someone passed by the door again, this time in the opposite direction. This time I got up to look and of course there was no one. The person was wearing a pastel yellow top, that's what caught my eye. No, there is no one in this house other than my cat and I. It is or was likely not a solid human being. I have had similar experiences in the past and one time I got scratched by a cat that wasn't there too. I still have the scars on my hand. I was sitting by a fire in a house I lived with others. Someone was playing the guitar and there was a door that I was near and suddenly my hand was bleeding, two lines and I glimpsed a cat who wasn't solid. It made no noise and it disappeared when I looked straight at it. When I exclaimed I just got scratched they asked me if was our cat and said no, it was a ghost cat, a cat that wasn't there. Same feeling that I had with the person in yellow. I'm wondering if it is not the area or the situation if it is me, if I am haunted?

Monday, December 7, 2009

This is about the season of caring and giving and living to tell about it.

I had a somewhat spiritual experience. To better convey a way to describe the experience I will allow that it was as if an angel or the spirits of the season stepped into my body and took over my actions and cleansed my spirit, my brain and my body. It is not like in the past where my mom or others have told me to keep this to myself. This is a connection I have been given, an awareness I have been listening for. It is huge gift to me so that I can pass if forward. It is not something that I should keep quiet about. More people need to hear that much is possible that we are all connected, that great works can be accomplished with small actions by many. It is hard to describe except to tell you the results of this experience. I have a new mantra, "for the greater good". My brain has been cleansed of prejudice and malice. I feel no ill will towards anyone. I am not thinking of others as "oh they should this or that or coulda'a, would'a, should'a. I've even lost the thought or the prejudice when people take actions that are not well thought out. I include myself in the description of noot having malice towards anyone. The remnants of self loathing seem to have been lifted. When walking from the van where we parked down the street to the market the homeless people were hanging out at the corner of the sidewalk and the entrance to the market parking area. It was cold and a woman was bundled up shivering. This is when I feel the angel enter my spirit. Usually, when coming from the market we give anyone asking or looking as though they are going to ask some money. Today was different. Just then after the angel had touched me I exclaimed to my friend that I was going into the store, right to the deli section and getting two containers of soup. Now, I am not someone who has extra funds, but that thought didn't even occur to me. I went straight to the deli section, asked the person there what were the two soups and choose the chicken/spinach as the right choice to purchase and take to these people outside. I told him what I was doing and told me that made him feel good and he pointed out the bread and crackers and told me where I could pay and get utensils. I had the money, which is some what of a miracle to me, because I've not had money often in the past several years. I have a new sense of value for my meager purchasing power. I immediately took the soup to the woman and asked her if she didn't have a friend and she said he was in the store. She thanked me and opened the soup right away and started spooning it into her mouth. I walked away feeling that my heart was enriched, that I am finally connected in a solid way to the rest of humanity. I feel more hope and faith that everything happens for a reason. I don't know if the spirits are gone or if they remain. I have a new mantra "for the greater good" and much of who believe I am and what my purpose in life is, is being fulfilled. I have more balanced understanding of my place in the universe. I need to keep moving forward. I am sharing this in the hope that others pass some of what they have along to others whomever they meet, without prejudice. It's 10:00 on Monday and have to finish my dishes, get off the computer and drink another cup of coffee and practice my mantra because by doing so I further my connection to that purpose I have been listening for.

Yesterday while going grocery shopping

Sunday, December 6, 2009

to many chiefs

You know how it goes, I'm going out on assignment and another boss comes up and says" do me a favor and fuel the buses you all use when you get back tonight, will you?" Of course I said. He called me this afternoon when I was out shopping for groceries and asked me if I fueled the buses last night and my time. I said yeah, you asked and I said yes, didn't you look at the fuel sheet? We write all the milage and gallons down on a spread sheet. Then he went on to talk about the old steam engine that the City of Portland owns and they are running it for the holiday season. I told him what time I worked fueling buses but he didn't listen. We hung up the phone rang and I told my shopping friend, it's him calling to get the time I worked. I told him 12:15 to 1:46 and he said 12:15 this morning? And I said yes. He said he didn't think the zoo was open that long and I said Forestry Center Event! He tried to apologize by saying he no idea that it was going to be so late.

I keep forgetting I'm not 25 any more. I still work like I am. Maybe I'm reliving my younger years because the first time I screwed them up pretty badly. Of course, not all of the screwing up was my fault, only 50%. got to go.

Shopping with my friend and former neighbor today

We first went to the People's Co-op for the usual bulk items etc. and for me to remedy the error I contributed to on the first. I bought some coffee and used a recycled bag that had several code numbers penned onto it. I put a line through several and wrote the right code. As I was checking out I had an item that was $13.77 and although it sent up a flag, I said nothing, but did ask for a receipt. They ask if you want one, otherwise the paper is saved. I discovered my error a couple of days later. Apparently, I missed the coding on the other side of the bag for Sassafras which is $25.99 an ounce. Wow! I got it straightened out today, a whopping $9.00 credit which made my bill today $7.50. I love the People's Co-op. Here is their link!

It is one of my most valued places to visit in Portland. There is more spirit in a store of this nature. Everyone that shops or works their contributes in their own way, adding to the flourishing existence of that popular store.

I was considering my swollen lower extremities and

the thought occurred to me I wonder is heart damage is reversible? I went to ask. com and heart attacks are not reversible and below that I found this:
Damaged heart
Shop for Damaged heart, Compare Prices Find more Damaged heart you'll love.

I think it is odd to suggest that someone is shopping for a damaged heart. I guess that there are so many bots out there without hearts that it is impossible for them to imagine that we are not interested in a damaged heart to purchase! Of course, maybe that is just my damaged brain and the way I look at the world?

I worked long hours yesterday...

It is predicted to be a cold week up until Thursday and no precipitation. There seems to be a clamor, an anticipation that snow is imminent. Some dread it, others accept it and some relish in the idea of the cold whiteness that our landscape becomes. The Zoo Lights would be fantastic to view twinkling through snow and I will have to consider taking the Max. to the zoo if the snow stays around for me to take some ducats and wrap myself up and venture into the throngs of parents accompanying their children into the world of fantasy.

I signed in at the dispatch office at 3:45 pm on the 5th of Dec.and signed off at 1:46 am on the 6th of Dec. When I got to dispatch my fueling boss asked me if I could do him a favor and fuel the buses the other 4 drivers and I were taking to the Portland Zoo Lights shuttle service after we were done. I didn't really think about my sign off time and said yes. I don't think he had a clue to my sign off time. We got to the zoo and were activated, (just add water, kidding of course) and drove pretty steadily from that point until 10:15 pm. We carried over 1200 passengers from the parking lot a 1/2 mile away to the zoo and back on that cold Saturday night. Of course, we were in our warm buses. Some of the passengers were irritated that the coordination of the shuttle was not as efficient as it could be because there is no dedicated road for the buses and we have to creep through the car traffic that leading to the zoo, which is being turned around near the entrance only to become shuttle riders once they figure it out. People it seems are still attempting to count on luck for getting into the immediate zoo parking area, even though there is overwhelming evidence that their efforts will go unrewarded. And it seems there are a number of people who are unsatisfied with just turning around when directed to do so as though they are unprepared for this action and have to stop the whole line of traffic behind them to ask whatever questions or demand entrance of the security person, sometimes for as long as a minute which can seem like much longer when you are anticipating moving along to your destination smoothly much longer. When the passengers on my bus starting spewing to me how inefficient the shuttle was and how it could be remedied, I suggested they take thier ideas to the Metro, the people who run the zoo. Of course I didn't hear one person say, great idea, I'm going to do that. I don't really know what people are thinking because their actions tell a different story. I don't like to generalize, but there is probably a large percentage of professional drivers who have wondered what people are thinking when driving because of many actions that are executed that defy rational behavior. I usually just exclaim either out loud or quietly to myself, "What are you thinking?" when I encounter daily what some people consider as a normal transportation experience. It can be changed, but the people who make the decisions need to know. The people who make the decisions I suspect know what a cluster F&%K it is when they try to funnel thousands of people into a single two lane road in a short window of time. That's why when they visit the zoo lights, they get a special closed to the public preview and don't have to deal with the masses. I could go on and on and usually do, but for some reason, I've caught myself here. That's enough. I'm going to the metro zoo sight and register my observations to the authorities and see if there is a plan in the works to remedy this situation.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

I'm back and Lou is right, monetize is only for people who have many, many readers over a thousand I beleieve.

Yep, my take on the monetize your blog is you must have a huge following to make it worth while. I imagine there are those people who imagine they have a large following yet when it comes down to it only have a lard following, a few slovenly folks who or never mind.

Today is the day I report to work for the Zoo Shuttle. The Portland Zoo is having their annual Zoo Lights display. Of course, shuttling people to and from the overflow parking areas does not give me an advantage point with which to see all the illuminations. I will be lucky if I have a working FM radio in my bus to allow my mind to stay focused while weaving in and out of the traffic jams that happen when people think they can find parking in the full lot by the zoo, only having to turn around and drive to the overflow lot, line up and snarl traffic so that the shuttle buses even have to wait to pick up and drop off passengers. That is an irony of driving the shuttle bus at to and from the over flow parking at Portland Zoo. There is no shuttle bus only lane which makes it darned inconvienentfor everyone. That should be a consideration. The Zoo needs to purchase land and build a parking lot that has an access road just for the shuttle buses so that they become an effective tool. Of course, I am diametrically opposed to individual motorized transportation, yet have to rely on it myself as the most cost/time effective method of getting from here to there. I wish it weren't so.

I haven't earned any rewards in my credit union account...

because I haven't earned enough credits. I have 2093 points from using my debit card. I don't much adhere to the principle of earning points towards gifts or cash because I am not much of a consumer. the old saying of if you earn more you will spend more applies to me. I earn less and spend less. It looks like the average minimum points are around 5000 to receive a gift and cash, you got to have 10000 or 20000 points. That will never happen to me. I had to investigate though because a pop up kept annoying me when I log on to my credit union website. Oh, and I have decided to investigate the google offer of ads after looking into Gordon Gekko's Manual of Morals as suggested by a friend. Oh boy!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Of course I want to earn more money, but can I do it in good conscience?

Google is offering to support me to some extent with ads in my blog. Since I know how much I detest ads invading my areas of information, I want to come here and ask whomever is reading my blog what you think about me signing up for this advertising? I will have to carefully consider this opportunity or insult. I know that I have not been here consistently because I get distracted, however I think I've made a decision to write here regularly, much of it having to do with how I conduct my life. You see, I have to define what it is and what I want to do with it and actually print it out here or in a document to fully appreciate what I am thinking about. I don't have the complete capacity to weigh in on ideas in my head. My conceptualization is corrupted, doesn't work like people who can conceptualize well. So that's it. How do you, whomever is reading my writing feel about ads on the side bar and between my posts as Goolge is suggesting

Just to many issues to list and the frustration pile is growing!

I carry a tape recorder now to put down memo's of thoughts that occur to me while I am out and about and likely unable to recollect in the near future. I mean, they might pop into my head in two weeks and that will just add to my already up to the eyebrows level of frustration. I'm listening to the tape play and what I have is my school bus route 144 for Portland Public Schools through the contractor I work for. It is Monday, the 30th of November and I am driving up NW Thompson about a 1/2 mile East of NW Skyline Blvd. outside of Portland and the bus is going slow because it is old 181,000 odd miles on it and packed to the gills with Lincoln High School students, all 46 of them. I see a line of vehicles forming behind the bus in my mirror and notice a car at the top of the hill heading down in our direction. Suddenly the vehicle behind us, a Toyota Camry darts out and starts passing us over the double line. That is not necessarily the bad part. The bad part is they are passing a school bus loaded with adolescents in this case and I have to ask myself since I can't ask them, What are you thinking? They made it and cut in front of us before the opposing traffic collided with them. But for what? Was it worth it to put about 50 people in jeopardy because you didn't want to drive slowly up a hill? I think that people in cars have really lost track of the idea of what is safe and what isn't safe to do while driving. That was the first of a series of blunders by other drivers that afternoon that could have lead to a serious collision. You see, I don't consider a collision an accident. An accident is more like a collision that happens without warning. In this case there is plenty of warning that danger is imminent and if the wrong action is performed then that was a choice and a bad one! Then an SUV decides to pass us, thing is another car is coming down the hill, What are you thinking? I just don't get it. Likely, there is no time savings. Maybe it is because that person is talking on their cell phone or texting and they are not paying attention or don't know it will only take 30 more seconds to ascend the hill. I know that for some reason many of us have been told that we can save time if we do more things at once by purchasing products that help us save time. So, it appears some people are still drinking the Kool-Aide, the ideas that "marketing" people use to sell products or ideas. Some of those "marketing" people are not being honest. To me, "Marketing" is really just lying. When is the lying going to stop? When are the double standards going to end? What is considered enough people to speak up against something for the rest of the people to pay attention and stop the nonsense? That about covers it. Now I am going to write up an outline for what I want to being to our company manager as to my safety concerns that I didn't even touch on here.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Hoping for a new house mate

I interviewed a woman this evening who said she was coming at 6 pm and showed up. She also took an application and I gave her the address for the land lady. She and I got along better than the last half dozen people who have been by or called here. She has a dog. I love dogs. She seems like she is going to ask to move in. That's the feeling I got. She is 32, but to me she doesn't look a year over 25. Of course, I don't have to worry about other peoples ages since I am not selling them liquor any more.

I went out today, late, purchased a new futon twin size for my futon frame. I've been using two 3 inch foam pads and they suck. I'm sure that some of my aches and pains are because of the foam pads being only really good for occasional duty. I will be able to fold the bed up into it's other intended purpose now, a chair to sit back and lounge in. Yea! Along with that, new rotor and distributor cap for the tune up I plan on giving the old van Sat. afternoon and Sunday morning. And I purchased a fine used chair with a woven black fabric and chrome metal legs with little plastic scuff buttons on the bottom. I have been using a light duty folding chair I purchased at least 2 years ago. I plan on selling the foam on Craig's List and the chairs too at a considerable discount from new. They are all in great shape, just not made for the continuous duty I have demanded of them. The chairs cost $20 each new and I till take $8 each or 2 for $15 and the foam pads were $18 each and I am going to ask $20 for both or $10 each. No discounts with those unless of course a person offers to take both. Who knows, maybe I will just have to give them away, but not without first trying to sell them. Money is tight and I believe if someone pays at least a little they will find more value than if they get it for free.

I too wish that the present Obama in the White House was the same one I voted for last year! It just drives me further from the politics and the fact that those people are so out of touch with the society I live in....

the more I find out the less I know

Wow! I put an ad on craig's list describing what I am looking for in a living situation, thinking I might have to leave this place and got a response from someone who asked if we might be compatible and look for a place together. I wrote back with my phone number included in the text and the person called back. She was pretty high energy and almost sounded as if she hadn't really had a conversation with anyone for some time. She talked about what she was looking for, what she did for a living etc. Then she got off on a tangent and was telling me to much information. I said Whoa, to much information, let's get together tomorrow and talk some more. I told her I would call. I spaced it out and just got off the phone with her. She told me that she thought that anyone that would tell her to shut up was not compatible to her. Her perception is much different than mine, but I was still willing to meet in person. She hung up the phone on me, wow! She was so abrupt and rude that it left me spinning and I had to write about it somewhere and thought this would be a good place because I may get some sympathy and understanding and some kind words to balance out that reponse. I'm glad that came out right away, that we incompatible. It would have been a horror/drama story if she had chosen to put up a false front to get in the front door.

On anther note, Thanks Giving Feast and Friendship was awesome. I went to my former neighbors apartment and we had a huge feast. We also watched the movie directed by Peter Jackson called Living Dead. It has to be one of the bloodiest movies ever produced, but there was so much slap stick and sublime humor that we weren't grossed out. It was a fun time, laughing and eating and being entertained.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Just sold a too I posted to craigs list

I'm selling off items at basement prices because I don't use them or I am trying to get better control of my material objects. I sold a 4 ton hydraulic body tool and but before doing so one of the persons contacting me was so pushy I had trouble dealing with him. He called me on the phone like 4 times almost to the point of pestering me and when I said come over at 9 he came over at 0845 and parked in my driveway which is short and like he owned the house that I rent. I could tell he wanted it and I showed him it worked. It was just the way he was, pushy. I am not so pushy, however I am opinionated according to some fellow workers and I am loud according to even I. So, I gave up at 0855 and sold it to him. I am trying not to be such a stubborn person. The guy is buying something and paid better than 1/2 the new price. I'm happy about it, but I just hate to deal with people on that basis and I still must because I have a bunch of music CD's that I am going to post today. Don't need them, music is everywhere and I am really just interested in listening, not collecting!

Busy, high energy knocked down and getting back up to resist again

The school bus company I work for has recently installed Zonar Systems GMS/GPS system in its buses in this part of Portland, Oregon. They have been installing the systems world wide in all their buses and here is what they told us essentially it would be used for electronic data input to get away from the paper reports we have to make to comply with DOT regulations. However, it goes much further. Here is a quote from a transportation system magazine article.

"(According to Brian McLaughlin, COO for PeopleNet, about half of their new customers are previous users of competing systems while the other half have never used a telematics system before and have a few key reasons for considering one, such as the desire to automate driver logs. “We usually have to pull new customers back,” McLaughlin says. “You can't successfully do everything at once, so we tell customers to begin by focusing on the areas with the greatest ROI first.”

For most fleets, that has meant beginning with the operational basics, for example, by optimizing routes and improving driver performance to reduce fuel usage by managing deadheading, idling, out-of-route miles and fuel-robbing driving habits like speeding and improper shifting. “Just the fuel savings and automating driver logs pays for the system,” says Lemke. “The rest is all gravy.”)" And the way our local manager has of informing us of what we are doing is putting the reports of our speed out on tables in our dispatch area and leaving a note on her white board telling us if we don't start toeing the line we are going get disciplined. Oh boy, not only that, the middle managers of the company seem to have software that scans our drivers daily reports and the time we log onto the bus system and it is paying us the most favorable to the company. That means when we report to work to pick up our paperwork everyday at our assigned time, we don't get paid. I suspect it is a change in policy, except they conveniently forgot to explain the procedure to us. We are getting shorted time. Of course, all this goes along with their standard operating procedure. Someone in the company, an employee has asked the company to repair and bring up to safe standards equipment in the yard and provide rain gear for some of the drivers who fuel buses the response to our question of rain gear was "what did you use last year?" When we replied whatever we brought from home, we were told "use that, it worked last year didn't it?" I told the manager who were having the conversation with that most companies I'd worked for in the past supplied rain gear or any other safety equipment as part of their obligation to keep their employees safe. That response was met with a dirty look. So, that was a meeting with the fuelers and I have been one for over a year. Usually the companies I worked for purchased several rain suits of varying quality and often we had to mix and match, but at least we had protection. It is obvious that this company is taking away or refusing to treat the employees who bring in the revenue as respected human beings instead insisting that safety is their number on priority in public, but what they do at their bus yard is none of anyone's business including their employees. I've been busy. I've made time to take every third Thursday off from fueling and attend union meetings to keep informed and to add whatever I can to question what our elected union representatives are doing to help us remedy our working conditions. And then, someone file a complaint with OSHA. I know this because I know the person. The person exhausted all requests for the company to bring the fueling equipment up to industry standards. It is propane and although it is not as flammable as gasoline or perhaps Jet A or diesel it has several safety related issues for the workers who fuel the buses. The first being training. The training to transfer the propane has been inadequate and the facilities maintenance is non existent and there is no evidence of any regulatory inspections. We have over 200 drivers in our yard and our contract is with Portland Public Schools. And of course, we are driving buses that are old for industry standards and since this company has purchased our contract and buses they have implemented different ways of doing things. They did upgrade the equipment in the shop, but eliminated the overtime. They also instituted a new policy on ordering parts much like our heath care system where an administrator has to approve the parts order according to some budget plan if they deem it excessive, no part is ordered. They did however, bring us a bunch of wrecked buses and leave them in our yard and apparently the manager has instructed perhaps the mechanics to strip these buses of needed parts. Hell of a way to keep the children of the city safe. Plus, these wrecked buses are robbing our operating buses of parking stalls. We don't have enough stalls now and that is an issue. We have lots of issues now with this big multi national corporation that have been sucking up my time.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

This has been a very different than usual day

I did little most of the morning. First of all, I stayed in bed until 0550 and got up shortly after 0600. My normal day during the week starts at 0430. I did little until I called my friend after taking a shower this morning by about 1000 and got dressed. We grocery shopping about 1200 and were done with that by 1300. I had a large mid afternoon lunch dinner at about 1500 hours. I did figure out what and how I was going to approach Blogger and Face Book and deleted some FB "friends". I will likely continue to whittle away at that. One person whom I haven't had any contact with for more than 10 years contacted me for friendship and I wrote back Why? in the subject line of the message I sent and then said something to the affect of "I've become quite anti-social, tell me why we should be friends on FB". The response was short and possibly misunderstood. She said I thought you were somebody else, obviously I was wrong, good luck or sorry or some other thing. I just wanted an explanation as to why a person would want to hook up on FB that I had no contact with for 10+ years. Apparently, asking for an explanation was to much for that person. At least that's the way I see it. Of course, I do see things in a different light, such as the lens of the land fill.

Thanks Goodness, I'm not the only confused person in the world!

Wow! Someone was really confused when they decided on the heating in this house. I'd never run across this type of heating in all my life's experience's. It is radiating from the ceiling. That's right, radiant heat from the ceiling! The thought occurred to me that someone was confused when they installed it. That someone misunderstood the instructions and instead of putting it in the floor, put it on the ceiling. That is not the case. I talked to a friend, an electrician who told me that this type of heating idea came out in those mixed up days of the 1970's. So, we have radiant heat from the ceiling which goes against the very nature of what heat does. It rises when produced, it goes up! I have now turned on my fan at low power, pointed it at an upward angle, hoping to blow the heat hugging my ceiling down little more and against the wall and down towards the flow. So far the air on the floor is moving, but is still relatively cool. I think ceiling fan would be the best I could do. This heat system is installed in each bedroom and in the kitchen and living room. The living room unit doesn't work. I purchased a space heater for that room and the house mate moving out doesn't have the same understanding of what the function of a space heater is since I came home twice and found it blasting away on full power, highest thermostat setting and he wasn't even in the room! This was the final straw that contributed to my telling his sister I was looking for a place to live. He has little understanding of what the costs of everything are since his sister handles all his finances.

another update.

Oh, I moved in Portland from my apartment single person dwelling into a house with others further outward towards the East, about 70 block numbers. It is a big change to go from living alone to living with others, especially people who are complete strangers. I wrote plenty about them on my Face book account, a mistake for sure. One of them had a melt down in Aug. and is now no longer even coming by for anything. I think he is perhaps a narcissist. There was nothing one could do that didn't provoke a negative response from him. Bye, Bye! Now the other is the brother of the land lord, but alas he has been asked to move as well. He is disabled and likes being a patient, hence his attention is very limited to sports, all about TV and his various maladies. My feeling was that he was playing the disabled pain card every time a chore was required by him. He has selective chore process. He can't do anything below his knees but sweep and even sweeping causes to much pain. He is unable for instance to do any cleaning in the bathroom it seems, which puts undue responsibility on me. He is not able to perform anything in the kitchen either and he can not do very much outside. He struggles with those tasks all mostly when there is someone around who will notice. He does go out and to places, gets up early 0600 on Sat. and Sun. to attend some 12 step meetings South of Portland which he walks and rides the bus to. He is leaving. Now I am looking for two new house mates. Wow and my rent has remained the same. I am actually looking for another place to live and that is what instigated my land lord to ask her brother to move. I am taking my time to find the right situation, perhaps a house with a large or small separate room, a garage or shop and perhaps a front porch with large shade trees in the yard. This place is small, with large yards, no shade trees, no house mates, and no garage or shop. I have projects and a couple of tool boxes that don't need to live in my bedroom!

I continue to think to seriously

I was thinking about our life's experiences and how some of them we don't share openly with all because they are not experiences that others have had and we could alienate them when others hear them. I understand that, yet as a fighter against the walls we put around ourselves question the wisdom of not being open. If you can't relate, just say so. I'm not talking about degrading others, just some experiences. Of course, I know I can't reveal somethings. There are many who would condemn me today for actions of the past that I have made amends for, yet some would not be able to accept. Then there is the corp. I work for. I can't trust that they aren't data mining the web, looking for anything to hold against me, that would shine a light against my ability to perform my tasks.

I'm still confused about what I intend to do with this sight!

However, onward. I need it for blowing off frustration, I'm thinking. I am trying to concentrate on some serious writing on my computer alone, works which I intend to finish and submit to someone for publishing in some form. I need a feeling of completion and accomplishment. On this note, I just need to vent and Face Book is not providing that for me, so I am back to this.

So, today I want to thank all the Veterans who have and are presently serving our country! Thank You All!

Since I drive a school bus and it is a school holiday, I am off. It is rainy outside and sitting at home is one of my options, working on a couple of petitions I am submitting to my union about some contract language and safety issues in our yard.

I allowed for a minute a union rep to be my FB friend and realized that was a mistake, because she revealed something of what she thought of my rambling frustration posts. I deleted her as a FB friend. She has a bigger mouth than me. At least I have an understanding of discretion. So, another friend whom I have never met and I had a conversation this weekend. She reminded me that this website is an important tool. It allows me to post my rambling and I don't have to reveal myself to people I work with, because I am much more socially detached than I have lead them to believe. I am still in touch with the anger of my youth. It is hard to believe that my level of acceptance is not really understood my working peers.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Pretty well done with on line writing

I've about had enough of on line writing. I guess it was really just a phase with me. I am working on unfinished works elsewhere and hope to gt something published. My friend Erik says I will do anything to be published. He is really just joking. But I am not joking. I have so many pieces I've started and in progress, I struggle to even get them in order. I have a face book account as well and have been finding less and less time to go there.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Still no pictures uploaded. I'm just to unorganized.

I am really living at a different speed or different speed zone that some others. I just can't seem to align my time with others. I am structured for work, always early and on time but and my own other life. I have a low frustration/patience/tolerance level. For instance, I decided to raise the handle bars on my bicycle. For me that was to much. To much to plan and in my impulsive way just attacked it and discovered it would be to much work. My bike has been down for about a week. I did manage to change the seat, but am now having an issue with my front brake not being lined up right. V-brakes. I should just convert to discs, but money is an issue and I don't got that fast or ride in enough rain to warrant them.

So, why I really came here to write is I am finally aligned with a majority! A majority of Americans believe that the health care issue in The United States of America is the number one issue facing us today. That is 76% of us believe we need to resolve this health care issue. I am elated to finally be in a majority! I have been in one minority or another for the longest of times. Of course, my two room mates are in the minority on this. I'm not sure what they believe in. Room mate A and I met up in the kitchen this afternoon and I said Hi! He said Hi Ho and something else and was aghast that I couldn't remember this as the opening lines for Walt Disney something like the Mousekateers. He started to get agitated, his voice started to increase in volume and I just started laughing because apparently he takes lines and words from TV so seriously, especially just entertainment, fiction etc. He is the one who sits in front of the TV for more than 12 hours a day and talks to the TV, uses obscene language calling the characters on the screen by various names, actually, he inserts himself into the action on the screen and uses some of the exact lines the actors are using, but ad libs and uses X rated adverbs and adjectives. By golly it feels good to be in the majority.

Room mate B, the controller is back to controlled drinking. School is over for 3 months and he has been hitting the beer pretty regularly. I'm thinking that part of his troubles with me while in school are that he was off the sauce and that was a problem for him. Oh, Oh, a bull in a china shop perhaps. We will just have to see. And of course, he is studying to become a nurse, RN, but I wonder if the health care issue is his motivation. He has really not opened up about it. I think there might be more to be revealed about his motivations. He told me the other day that he doesn't do anything that he doesn't want to do. And it's true, he started washing his dishes, but never puts them away. He often leaves his personal items in common areas causing the other room mates to move them or relax around them or what ever. He is more often than not leaving dishes full of liquid in the sink as though that is accpetable practice. The other day, he left dry dishes in the dish drying rack for 2 days. I moved them both days. I refuse to bow down and keep either washing his dishes or putting them away. I just move them to the stove or some other counter space.

I wrote on my peanut butter cap, use your own, because my quart of peanut butter was rapidly dropping faster than I was eating it. I went through a quart in a week, when my minimum time is two maybe more. It is tough living with these 24%er's. One is decidedly a Republican and the one who watches TV nearly all the time is likely a Republican too, even though they watch the Colbert Report and laugh.

Well, back to hanging out the laundry. I am doing my part to keep my carbon foot print down. Oh, not my Republican room mate. He had a fire in the back yard last night while embibing on his cool beverage and did not make sure it was out when he left it. This afternoon it started smoking and I was tempted to pour water on it, but that would set him off no doubt. Likely he was not a boy scout and didn't really learn much about those fire situations down in Southern California when he was growing up.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

I Heard an Ad on TV

That's right, I wasn't facing the TV, hence it was only upon hearing an ad that I had to question what is Wealth. It was an ad for Smith Varney/Morgan Stanley. They said something to the effect that if you put your wealth with them, it will grow and be secure. Of course I had to go to my Bookmarks Bar and click on my resource for keeping my definitions in order.
this is what said for Wealth. "
1. a great quantity or store of money, valuable possessions, property, or other riches: the wealth of a city.
2. an abundance or profusion of anything; plentiful amount: a wealth of imagery.
3. Economics.
a. all things that have a monetary or exchange value.
b. anything that has utility and is capable of being appropriated or exchanged.
4. rich or valuable contents or produce: the wealth of the soil.
5. the state of being rich; prosperity; affluence: persons of wealth and standing.

Of course I am watching Meet The Press and maybe this NBC program brings the wealthy to the TV on Sunday mornings. It brings me. So, the wealthy, the people in our society who have an abundance of wealth, more than it takes to live day to day and Smith Varney/Morgan Stanley wants to manage it for them, of course for a small pittance. I'm sure that I could live off their pittance, the fee they charge. You see, I just don't have a clue, don't know anything about financial wealth. Most citizens of the world probably share my lack of understanding on financial security.

On another note, I am traveling to the SF Bay Area for my mother's 90th birthday on July 29th of this year. I will be flying down on the 28th and flying back on the 30th. Doesn't leave much time for anything, but it will be enough for my mom. 90 years old, who would have thought?

Monday, June 8, 2009

That Old Adversary is Back, The One Way Dreaded Perfectionist!

My father was a perfectionist. Trouble is, he wanted us to do it perfect, but much of what he did in life fell short of that mark. This is somewhat how I am beginning to feel living in this room mate situation. A couple of guys who claim they are not perfect, yet expect a higher standard from me than they adhere to.

I got home this evening and my room mate, who doesn't do anything except complain about how he can't do anything and watches TV all day and night told me when he came into the kitchen this morning the cabinet door was open and could I please remember to close them? I said I would be mindful of that, however I also pointed out that our other room mate could have left it open. He said he hadn't thought of that until I mentioned it. Then he announced that they washed the dishes in the dishwasher at which time I said, they had already been washed but he said they hadn't come clean. That's when I told him I hadn't used any of the dishes in the dishwasher, that I wash all of my dishes by hand within 24 hours of using them, that I don't use paper towels and that I have my own toilet paper.

This after I spent my Sunday morning dusting and sweeping and mopping and cleaning up in the bathroom too. Neither of my room mates did anything this weekend contributing to the house as far as I could see, oh one of them emptied the garbage can in the bathroom, something I don't use either although I have emptied it in the recent past. These two guys are opportunists I am afraid, just waiting for me to do whatever they don't do which is much of everything. The last several weeks I have emptied the kitchen garbage before going to work on Mondays which is the day garbage is picked up, but not this morning and low and behold, it is still not emptied this evening. I am not approaching either of them. All that happens is an argument and I am not into that level of negativity. If they have so little to do, but bitch at me then so be it.

So, I had to tell my room mate the student that I expected to be getting up around 2:00 am and I would be mindful of keeping quite, but if he heard noises, it was me, don't be alarmed. That never happened, as soon as I opened my mouth, he interrupted me and started going off about our previous conversation about the refrigerator and how I should be closing it to not disturb him. Switching to his subject, I told him I got his message that morning, now about my schedule. He interrupted again about his topic and I started shouting because I wasn't being heard. Finally, that not working as it never does, I tried to retreat to my room only to have him outside my door continuing to blather on about the closing of the refrigerator. I opened the door and told him enough, but he kept it up and I slammed the door in his face offering some nasty verbs describing what he could do with his line of thinking, I couldn't afford the time spent on an argument. That didn't work and we spent the next hour calming back down and seemingly becoming good friends. I believe this guy is playing me. He has a higher command of a situation as far as the speaking side of it goes. I am not convinced that we achieved the intended goals of my warning him in a manner that fit two adults. Oh and the other room mate was yelling from his room for us to shut up. At the time, I yelled back that sitting in front of his TV yelling from his room to shut up was ineffectual.

I am up now and found some time to finish this post which I started yesterday. This place sucks and that old adversary the perfectionist, well I will still attempt to find ways around him. A disturbing thought having to go through my childhood again at 59 years old.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Rose Festival Parade!

Yesterday was the parade and being a school bus driver I had the assignment of driving the Lincoln High School Marching Band to the parade beginning over at the Memorial Coliseum. There were supposed to be 2 buses for this assignment. The price of the trip determined size buses were assigned I suspect. We were driving our standard 71 pack school buses, that being 71 3rd graders. High school students, about 46 fit. Now, we have the band, 2 tuba's, 4 base drums, two sets of snare 4 packs, and about 6 Tom Toms. All that in my bus and some trombones and a couple sax along with the students that played them, plus two wagons with supplies. I had about 30 students on my bus. If the school district could afford it, we would have brought transit style buses with below floor storage, but they are having something like an $18.5 million short fall this coming I think, two years. They are cutting costs where ever they can.

So, on the way to Lincoln bus zone was going to require some creative driving since many streets were blocked to allow the parade to go on without interference from motor vehicles. As I was driving across the Fremont Bridge from N.E. I get a radio call from the other driver. Apparently, he left the yard earlier, even though I was leaving at the scheduled time. He came on the radio as #1 Lincoln Bus to #2 Lincoln Bus. That told me right away who was #1 bus. I guess it was because he was at the school, almost and considered himself #1 bus. I don't normally care, except this driver sounded like a guy who lords over other drivers his seniority. Keeps mentioning how much time he has been employed by the company. He tells me his location and I tell that I am heading there. He tells me that he can't get to the bus zone because the police won't let him. I say OK and set myself up to get to his location which turns out to be reported incorrectly, or he forgot to update me once he got to where he was parked. Doesn't really matter. I made some last minute adjustments to head South on SW 18th and am waiting to turn onto SW Salmon, through the police barricades. About 200 feet from the intersection I hold up my clip board with my trip papers so the police see I belong there and making my turn I tell them it is a pick up and they let me right through, no problem.

I park down at the regular bus pick up/drop off zone. Since Lincoln is my regular route and I have had many trips downtown I found my way there neatly. #1 Lincoln Bus is nowhere to be seen, but I see a familiar driver walking up the street from SW 14th and Salmon. He tells me where he is parked, that he talked to the band leader and the police wouldn't let him drive to where I was parked. Whatever! If they let me and they were parking buses along both sides of Salmon, why wouldn't they let him through I am silently asking myself? He tells me to move my bus around by him and I say, why? The band room is right next to where my bus is parked! he gets kind of well, I'm the #1 bus and therefore we should stick together and since I am the senior driver you need to park where I am. I tell him to wait and I will find the adult band leader and ask him what he wants. That didn't make him very happy that I was getting more information. I spoke to the band leader and he said no, he hadn't had any communication with Driver #1 even though that driver told he had. And I was told it would be better for him if the other bus drove to my location. I relayed that info to driver #1 who continued to insist the police wouldn't let him up the street even as they escorting another bus. Oh well. We finally loaded all that equipment and I got the band leader who had the directions which I relayed to driver #1 who said he would wait and follow our bus, #2 to the destination. Ok, so we get going after I give the instructions to the passengers on my bus saying that we may drive the wrong way on some one way streets and not to do that themselves unless instructed by police or flaggers. We turned South on SW 14th which is one way North and bus #1 got behind us. There were street barricades at the intersection of 14th and Jefferson and a police cruiser manned by a nice sargent on the right who asked me if I wanted him to move. I had quickly assessed the clearances and told him no, we could make through with clearance to spare and turned West on SW Jefferson. We turned right on SW 18th and proceed towards NW Everett. When we stopped at a signal light adjacent to the ball park, I looked in my mirrors and noticed bus #1 stopped on the max tracks! I radioed him and told him not to stop on any more tracks and his response was copy 10-4 just trying not to lose you. I couldn't believe that response, from a driver who had spent much more time in Portland than I, who had told me he read the Oregonian that morning and it had all the street closures listed, but he told me he didn't bring the paper for reference. I again again told him we were going to cross W. Burnside and proceed to NW Everett and turn right. We had to stop again and instead of stopping about a bus length behind me on between where the tracks run, where I had stopped, he drove right up onto the max tracks again! This is one of the reasons I don't like driving with this guy. There are other reasons as well. When we turn onto NW Everett he is following me to closely and I call him on the radio again saying he needs to put more of a cushion between us and again responds 10-4 copy and I don't lose you to a traffic light. You know, us bus drivers often drive in groups of 2, 3, and 4 buses and often many more, but we always remember that we need to drive safely, that safety is our #1 priority and the rules of the road do not just go away because we can't control other drivers or traffic lights etc. This guy is starting to really annoy me, his following to close, his explanations which I follow with route we are following, special for buses delivering parade participants. Good Grief Great Pumpkin, how much reassurance does the #1 driver need? It appears to me, he hasn't done his homework or something about driving downtown. He lost without our guidance. So finally after traveling down Everett, we get to some parade marshals who direct us to drive up to the police barricades at the entrance to the Steel Bridge and wait to be directed through. Pay particular attention to the train signal because it is right above the police officers heads and they can't see it. Onto the Steel Bridge which has little traffic on it, buses and few cars. We get across and just follow the parade marshall's directions when we come to a signal at one of the intersections. As soon as it changes, at the top of the hill there is a motor officer coming down, but is still 1/4 mile away and I have plenty of time to proceed without violating his flashing red and blue lights. As I complete my turn an proceed, I notice in my mirrors, bus #1 cutting off the motor officer, making him stop to complete his left turn. I suppose I should have waited for the motor officer to pass too, however, there was plenty of time for one bus and the other to stop. I didn't contact driver #1 because we had arrived within 200 feet of that intersection. We parked and he parked to close to me and the band adults asked me if I could have him back up so they could unload the instruments and wagons out the back door like we loaded them. Driver #1 had help load these items at Lincoln. What was he thinking? I spotted for him while he backed up and then he insisted on helping them unload. When we were about to leave, I went to the parade marshall and asked about moving a vehicle, had told him we were just dropping and going when we arrived, but apparently he and driver #1 suffer from the same communication challenges. The marshall told me I would have to talk to the police. I just went over to them wearing my bus driver vest and said we needed to leave for another pick up could they assist us and they were more than happy to ask the other vehicle to move and gave me directions on how to get out, that is to disregard the street signs saying no turn here and etc. We left, passing right in front of the Cabalero's and proceeded to make way past the transit center at over to and across MLK over to N.E 7th over there. We drove down, bus #2 still leading and finally made a left and a right on MLK. I told bus #1 that he didn't have to follow me anymore and his response was "Oh, I thought you were taking me on a shorter route. I thought you knew where you were going?" I responded with I do know where I am going and proceeded to lose this guy but he hung on like he had previously driving through downtown. The thing about it was we were going to the next job together that afternoon. I was not looking forward to hearing more misdirections from Lead Driver so and so on my location and when I could expect to eat lunch. That next job was Oregon Zoo shuttle for overflow parking. Last year that was my first experience with this driver and it wasn't pleasant, although there was some humor in it. He talked on the hand held radio so much that the battery got used up. So that's my story of the Rose Parade and I'm sticking to it. We learn something every day and if I work the parade next year I will have some experience to feel good about.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Life and work is there something else?

I am missing something again. It is OK. A friend wrote on my face book page that it is time to come back to the home area I left and visit old friends. Well, maybe that works in his world which he was doing a lot of a couple of years ago, but I am working. Then when school is out, I will be scrambling around trying to make ends meet. I heard on the radio the other day that air fares are at an all time low. All time? I will check it out because my old mom is coming up on 90th birthday and I would like to see her again and my younger sister. Old friends, I did that last November. Most of my old friends have more disposable cash than I do. They go on vacations for weeks, go to concerts and other activities where they drop hundreds of dollars. I don't have that option, don't live that way and am working on paying off debt, not incurring more. My parents started us on savings accounts at an early age, told us much about saving and let us out in the world. I know that I and my older sister had no ideas what it took to save and we ended up burning through the money we had. When our father died, he had a little, I burned through that, my older sister invested and so did my younger sister. My mother has nothing. I have many old acquaintances who have inherited lots of money from parents and others who have invested wisely etc. I am now paying for my past indiscretions.

I am leaving, going to get moving, got shopping, got my van to work on got my storage to figure out where to put things to get out from under paying to keep items that have little value. I have to mow the lawn and do laundry.

My insane room mate is doing laundry and working at his part time job. He left this morning at 0630. I heard this noise that woke me up, thump, thump, thump and figured out that it was the washer. He started doing laundry at what ever time he wanted, maybe 0600. He was doing laundry when I got home last night from work at past 8 pm. He has not done his dishes and we are running out of room to store his dirty ones. I am not going to play his game and put them anywhere. He seems to have time for everything he needs to do, but when it comes to daily household chores, oh well. Oh well, the insane have their way. We will see how far he takes this.

Friday, May 29, 2009

It is getting more unsafe all the time our there on the road!

Yesterday I was driving from N. Fremont to I 5 south to connect with 84 E. We took N. Vancouver which becomes Wheeler and an easy entry to I 5 South. Near the intersection of Broadway and Wheeler there were signs telling of road work and the left lane closing. There were two cars ahead of my bus in the left lane and as the lane closed, I made room for them to merge. The lane was closing rapidly and they made their merge. Then in my mirror, there is a white SUV squeezing up next to me, there is little left of the lane and he is getting ready to hit the big orange triangle. I am moving ahead because braking would cause other complications with the rest of the traffic flow. Finally, that SUV brakes, but I can see in my mirror the drive looks angry.

We get onto the ramp, staying in the right and there is a pretty good flow of traffic when suddenly in my left mirror again the white SUV is cutting into traffic, in front of a car and then speeding up and cutting in front of me, hitting his brakes because he is going to fast and then speeding towards the East on I 84. The woman sitting in the front of my bus comments about that driver. We had a little exchange, because I honked my horn at his blatant abuse of the road way and the fact that I am driving my school bus, the yellow one. I have to wonder, what people are thinking when they do stupid driving behaviors like that? Do they think that maybe someones children are on the bus and they could be putting 50 little lives in pearl? Not likely, because the sane drivers tend to yield to the yellow or at least appear to use caution which is what the yellow of the bus is supposed to invoke in their brains. Yellow means caution, red means stop.

It is a continuing struggle for me to accept this bad driving of a few selfish people. I was reading in a national safety publication that aggressive driving can be ticketed, but why don't we hear more about people getting ticketed for this unsafe behavior. Why do we only hear about the results of road rage, the next step up from aggressive driving?

I am finding that I don't like to drive except in my big yellow bus because of the damage that could be inflicted on me in my small van by these same people, and I haven't even got on my motorcycle this year for similar concerns.

Time to go and do it all over again.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

I've found the answer on how to deal with my room mates.

I've decided they are both insane. This will be my defense against their insanity. It has been my problem, thinking that they were similar to me and therefore I treated them with respect. I soon found out though that there was little I could do that was not rewarded with out and out insults by the dominant one and that is just not going to work anymore. A friend, a very good friend, told me to put in my ear buds and just walk around with my ipod turned up, ignoring them. That is essentially what I am now doing, but without the ipod. I have journaled many words trying to figure out my room mate and found that it was driving me insane, that's when I discovered that I need to treat them in my head like they are. the dominant one is really good at triggering a reaction from me, but now that I have figured out that is what he thrives on, ignore is going to be my tactic.

When I got home today, he was civil like nothing had happened. Only an insane person would not apoligize or not say something about what transpired the other morning, except myself who was the target of the attack. I am not saying anything in defense. I need to stay here for about a year. I need to pay debt and work on my van. I can accomplish all of that here saving money and working on my van this summer. Oh, and as for the food thing. What a joke! This guy doesn't talk to anyone in the house, 3 of us, but brings home all this food, mostly perishables and once again dominates the space that we all share. The dining room table, the dryer top, the refrigerator. Then he tells me to help myself and I say no thanks. He says oh that's right you are an organic food guy, are you worried that this could poison you? I didn't respond. When all the food that he brought home spoils, likely he will have to blame his room mates since we didn't help him eat it. All he had to do was say no thank you to the people who gave it to him, but instead he takes it, brings it home and imposes it on us. I'm done. I know who these people are and now I have a defense against them. They had me fooled for a while, but I'm back to knowing what their game is and I'm not playing. I will find the time sometime to post pictures.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

I've been here two months now and .....

Of course, he has had it with me it seems. I have two roommates, the dominate one and the submissive one. The dominate one wants us to say respond to his interactions with us other two in a certain way. He wants us to say, OK, thanks for pointing that out, I will do better next time.

When I moved in the dominate one interviewed me on the phone. For me that was a mistake, I should have also been interviewing him and in person. The submissive one interviewed me in person and they both agreed I could move in. The submissive one is not necessarily a sub, but he sure can't stand up to the Dom. I am slow and each time confronted by the dom, usually repeat myself and that is the end, because he retreats to his room and closes the door, end of conversation.

Did I write about when I first moved in and suggested a monthly meeting to bring out our issues and he the Dom quickly put that to rest by saying he had that situation before with room mates and they just wanted to take control. End of conversation this topic. I started to get quite perturbed today at the thought of him. I had to remember a couple of things I've learned about people. One, they don't have power over me unless I let them have it. He says it is my fault he wakes up in the morning because I am making noises. We had an argument about that and the fact that I left some drops of urine on the toilet bowl. This was at 5 am. The other room mate got up to use the bathroom and walked into it somewhat confused. I don't perform well off the cuff and that's when I repeated myself. I cleaned up the toilet only to be told I shouldn't have, which is crap. He is incredibly controlling. However, not a master manipulator otherwise he would be able to sleep or stay asleep.

He blames me, said the other guy who moved out didn't wake him up when he got up, but left out the part that he was not attending school full time taking nursing at the time. Well, I think maybe that might have some affect on him.

He also is getting a bunch of free food and dominating the refrigerator, doesn't wash his dishes in a timely manner, digs out big chuncks of dandilions from the lawn and leaves bare spots, mows the lawn and doesn't sweep the walkway leaving clumps of cuttings. I do the sweeping out of disgust. He comes home from school earlier than I do from work and by the time I get home, he is in his room and the feeling I get is he is to important to be disturbed.

Well, if he starts another conversation or wants to point something out in the morning, I'm determined to tell him it will have to wait. I am getting ready for work and don't have time to get into one of these little hissy fits with him.

I am a lot calmer about it, used the tools that I learned about praying for my enemies. I don't want to spend my precious free time writing here about this guy. I did mention some of his behaviors to a friend of mine and he said Republican! I know there are some Republicans out there that might be offended, but he is not you nor you him. It was just a simple way to describe him that put some humor into my uncomfortable situation.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

I keep promising pictures but am just to unorganized to post them yet.......

I am so unorganized. Part of that has to do with not done moving if that can be real. I have some items that I have been carting around now for years, still in storage and am looking for places to put them. I just placed an ad at craigs for some items, a Mr. Heater and an electric impact gun with impact sockets. Some fellow offered me $15 cash right now, call me. Of course, he didn't tell me which item he was willing to part with the $15 for and I didn't consider that a serious offer so off to the trash.

I got another inquiry about Mr. Heater asking me if I still have it, to which I replied with my phone Number and the affirmative. That inquiry was sent from an iPhone, so I think, what do I think, I'm amused is how I feel.

I actually plan on a yard sale maybe first week of June, when tis pesky liquid sunshine stops falling out of the sky. I could have one now, but likely more people will come if it is sunny out.

I have created a small memorial in my bus with pictures of my departed dog and actually wrote a small sign that says "In Memory Of Buster" and attached it to the big picture I have had of him in bus for the last year or so. I'm not over putting him down and am getting all kinds of advice on getting another dog etc. I just keep telling those folks that I am sitting with how I feel for now. I am just coming out of a big batch of sadness. I know there are many more feelings associated with the grieving process. Anything I do, needs tempering with time. I process at different speed.

Speaking of that, I am reading a book by Thom Hartman about ADD. He has a lot to say and some of it rings true and I have a lot to say about it to.

I am also taking an on line defensive driving course and must get there now, to make some progress on it, first lunch though.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

My fellow tenants, Hello?

Tenant B the dominator, master manipulator of people I suspect. He and I have the same kind of bread now. He wasn't eating it before, it was another brand, now my bread is in his cupboard and down quite a way and the only one left was his bread which I am now eating. Difference is he pays full price, $4.19 a loaf and it is likely fresher. I don't care, I put mine in the freezer and I get 3 loaves for $5 or $4.50 if it is Wed. or Sunday at the overflow bread store. He now puts his bread in the freezer but wasn't paying attention to what he took out, or was it me? I suspect he likes to share food. He doesn't want to have a house meeting because he doesn't like them; his past experiences are bad he says, someone always tries to take control at the meetings. This fellow worries that I want to take charge, but that is not what I am thinking. I am thinking we can air out our differences. He says I can air my differences to him personally, but when I tried that, he shut me out by walking away and closing his door.

I am learning not to care or feel that I am being trampled here. I am planning on staying here about a year, until I can whittle away at my overage of personal items and then find another room for less in a more stable household.

The other guy is room mate A whose sister owns the house. she installed a projection TV that dominates the living room and is adjacent to the front door when one walks in to the house. It is big, 5 feet across and 2.5 feet deep with about a 65 inch screen that RM A plants himself in front of watching TV progrmas that he has seen about 5 or 6 times, making lewd and abusive comments to the characters on the screen. Sometimes he makes abusive comments to our neighbors like he did to the movers who had parked in front of our house yesterday. He claims that he started out nicely, but that's not what I heard. What I heard was abusive language from the start and it got worse from there. when I went out to go to work, the guy that had been the recipient of the abuse, started in on me.

Later, when I came home from work I mentioned that I took a load from the guy next door and my room mate said that guy was like that to him too! Oh surprise! I think the numbers of meds he takes bends his outlook somewhat. he has been "sober" in AA now for 20 years, but the only requirement for AA is the desire to not drink. They frown on anyone who talks about any other concerns. A lot of AA'ers do nt' ever see the need to deal with other issues, not all, but some. I have run into one of those here.

Oh and Room mate B appears to have a co-dependent relationship with room mate A. I've noticed some instances where they both say things like, "oh, he has a lot on his plate, that is understandable". I told one of them, "hell, everyone has a lot on their plate! WE are not given anything we can't handle" that is a saying around AA. Anyway, I've got to do dishes. It looks like I am back for a while. well see. Pictures coming soon

Monday, May 4, 2009

Have I written about my new living situation yet? No, well let me tell you

Aside from the fact that Buster got to live here ony about one month, a place with only two steps into the front or back doors, something that I was promised when first moving to Oregon, but lied to by my former landlord.

I need to go back a little since I haven't been writing. I moved out of the place over ner SE 35th and SE Powell in Portland to a place near SE Foster and SE 101st. I moved in with two other room mates and another dog. Buster and she got along real well and Jerky the cat told the other dog just who she is too.

The former land lord's property manager sent me a bill on top of my deposit for an additional $45 and that is with no mention of my $1050.00 deposit. I wrote them a letter back reminding them that the Oregon Tenant Landlord laws state an accounting is due showing how the deposit money was spent. Two weeks later I got my accounting and a check for $860.00 which with simple math says $190.00 missing. They detailed what that was including that $45 they tried to charge me for additionally. They said paid in full. This I felt was satisfactory. What really bothers me though is they are preying on the unsuspecting or possibly others who didn't clean the shit out of the their place by sending a bill of $$'s due. That's lying through omission as far as I can tell, down right deception. And that is to say that the Great American Capitalistic experiment is failing! It is failing because big companies and large corporations are cheating the rest of us, making us pay double. It's crap and a new revolution is called for. Of course, a non violent one, but a revolution indeed! We are going to have to revolt against all that is done in the name of corporate America like repeal the ruling that corporations are people too! That's crap, because it gives them money and similar rights that we as human beings have been fighting for centuries. It is strong language and we need to let them know them know we aren't going to take it any more. I think Obama is pretty good, but he is just another politician. And you know what I think about politicians. let em refresh your memory! Politicians= Liars. Not just some, but all of them. How could they be honest, they promise us anything to get into office, promises they can't possibly keep, which makes them liars!

I had a run in with my union rep on two occasions while she was driving through the yard to park her bus. She went by my position at about 20-25 mph, the yard speed limit being 5mph and most people safely driving 10mph. She swore when I confronted her tice that she was doing no more then ten, then proceeded to side step my statement by telling me other people don't obey the limits. I said, when you hit a bus,. the truth will come out and if you are not going ten, that will come out too. I saw
her today, going ten mph and there was a marked difference. Another driver fueler had a word with her and she listened to him. I follow his lead and drive between 5 and 10 mph while taking buses to the fueling station. I'm glad she is paying attention to her speed now!

So, my living situation is to strange, so strange that I can't write about it now, since I have to go to bed. More later, perhaps tomorrow. "You say you want a revolution, well we all want to change the world".

Saturday, May 2, 2009


Buster drying off at home Oakland, CA

Haven't had the energy to write here, been other places, yet...

I need to report today that I had to have my sweet dog Buster put down. It stabs me in the heart to think about it, when I second guess my decision. I know it was right at the time, but still it will continue to hurt, his absence. He was a short dog with a big, big heart! He helped me change who I am, had a significant influence on who I am as a person, helped me become a better person, gentler. He was a rescue dog, been rescued from a bad situation and when he and I first met, we both knew we were a match. He was my best friend and I let him be a dog. He only knew happiness when I cared for him. Today, the spark left his eyes. We walked this morning, but he looked at me with pain in his eyes. I probably knew then, but was not going to admit it to myself. I had called the vet earlier in the week, to see if there was something else we could do, if there was something we could find, something to cure. I decided in the vets office then, after talking with the vet and she seemed to think I knew what was best. Best for Buster. I don't know. I can't say what is the best thing. The pain meds weren't working and there was not much else to do. I don't know if he had cancer or a brain tumor, but I had done all I could do to extend his life with quality for awhile. One has to decide. I feel great Sadness, it is coming and going and coming back again. this will take time, time to let my heart heal, hope that he is in a better place, with his brothers and sisters and all the others who have come before him. It is still sinking in, that he will only be a memory or a photo or a feeling in my heart that feels cold and lost.....

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

went to Mt. Hood neighborhood today!

and this time I got a little tour of the elevation. I picked up kids at Alameda Elementary and took them to the Kiwanas Camp up on the shoulder of Mt. Hood. This time though, we got there and reloaded the bus this time with 65 children and adults and drove further up the shoulder of Mt. Hood to I think 4,000 feet. Probably a 6% or a little better grade because the bus then was only going 25mph in a 55 mph zone. Of course as per safety and the law I had my hazard lights on and we climbed. Lots of torque in the motor, just no hp. So we get to this place and it is just a pull out and park. We hike up this path, and come to a spot on the mountain that the settlers who came to Oregon via the Oregon Trail had to drag their wagons up and down. And they did, to avoid the Platt River which is nearby. I took some photos, but there is only so much I can do in one day. I was driving at 0600 until 0835 on my route and then to Alameda and then to Mt. Hood. I got back just in time to take Buster home. He was sitting in the car, but the temp was expected to climb past the high 70's today. I got back after about an hour of break, fueled my bus again and went to pick up kids, got done with that at 1715 and took a short break and fueled other buses for about an hour. It's money, but not that much. Money is my sole reason for working as much as I do. I am good at this kind of work and do it well and it is fun, but the bottom line is like anyone else's bottom line, the pay check!

Monday, April 20, 2009

I'm no prize, but kind of felt good today at TJ's when....

an attractive woman said hi to me while shopping. Of course, I had no defined action for the moment except to say hi back. Later, I asked myself why I didn't ask her if she would like to meet for coffee or lunch or could I feed her some chocolate? I just don't think of myself in the right way along those lines. It did make me feel good. I was looking rather sharp today in my black and gray shirt with old cars on it in yellow. I was also wearing my black dockers and had just trimmed my hair, read buzz and did my beard the same length. My beard at this short length looks more attractive and is not so hot. I think it adds to making me younger looking but not sure about that. Then I was wearing my dark glasses and a ball type cap. Yep, that made me feel good, better. I'm glad I now have money to spend on myself. Not much, but enough to at least go to the second hand stores and shop and purchase.

Onward to the new room mates. Room mate A is the house owners disabled brother and room mate B is a younger guy studying to become a nurse and working too as an attendant for a disabled person, not rm A. I've found that out some things having lived with these guys now for about 3 weeks. A is not to bright, has been in AA for about 20 years but has a prescription drug problem that gets him loaded on occasion. B is an aggressive know it all who is sometimes a bully and has temper tantrums when things don't go his way or if he doesn't want to engage, he ignores us. I'm done letting him use me as a door mat. You see, I'm pretty passive now that I have nearly 23 years clean and sober, although many including myself feel that c and s is not really an appropriate term for someone who has maintained abstinence for that long. Clean works best, but this is not that 12 step program. I let people take the rope out and if they hang themselves or whip me with it I will then determine how I will interact with them. I'm slow mentally that way and it takes me a while to figure out how I will deal with someone.

Buster my dog has an ailment beyond his Vestebular disease, possibly a brain lesion. It gives
him something like seizures. I took him to the emergency vet the other day. We are treating his other ailment, arthritis with a pain med.

So yesterday it was really hot and I left him outside where there is shade while I went to work. I left a note on the door so there would be no misunderstanding about leaving him out. Both room mates had a chance to read it since they were not home when I left. Today, I left Buster and the cat Jerky outside without a note and the understanding that he would stay out because it is to hot inside and I don't want him cooped up in our room while I am gone. Outside he has his pool which he can cool off in and can dig in the dirt and I left his water out there. I specifically said to A that I would let him in when I got home. I got home and A told me he let them in because he was concerned about the temp. He put my dog in the bedroom the one that faces the afternoon sun and the window was not open, but the door to the rest of the house was. I got home and immediately told A that was not what I had wanted. he stammered that he thought it was to hot outside and etc. I got Buster and took him for a walk and then came back and told A that I know he did it out of concern for Buster, but he could have consulted with me by calling me on my cell phone. he said something like yeah, but hadn't thought of it at the time. I also told him once back that I intended to put him out there tomorrow and I expected him to be outside when I get home. I had to spell it out and B heard me say it too.

B did have a little tantrum when A and I were out yesterday, somehow he got into it with the toilet paper holder. he managed to rip one of the arms off the wall. I will give him a week to fix it and then ask him when he expects to have it repaired if it isn't. When I got here and his water pik shower head holder broke i fixed in quickly in a few days. Took me some a day to go and get some JB Weld and then another day to glue it back together and for it to cure for 24 hours. It is not stronger than it was and it I see the other side start to break, I am staying away from it.

So, theres A and B and me. I am not the greatest person, my brain is wired differently, but I do have values that I live by. Honesty, openness and willing to adapt and adjust. I am honest in my communications, but require more information. I wanted to ahve house meetings to discuss ideas and suggestions and delegation of work, but B said his experience has shown him that house meetings are just so that someone can take over the house. I don't want to take over, but I think that B is or has been in charge and is worried that if we all sit down and talk our issues together, he will lose his authority with A. He has certainly lost it with me and my perception is that he sees me as a threat. He always has a reason that something can't be done because it has already been addressed or he tells me that I need to get my dog into obedeince (sorry, can't get the spell check to work for me)training or train him myself. And since I told him I am just loving Buster, he just doesn't get how I allow Buster to be a dog. He has ideas and my ideas clash with him and his ideas. The way I live and conduct my life is stricter than many in different ways. I mentioned my honest and the need for structure and being able to find things where I put them. That's the other thing. When he sees an idea that I institute in the house like put my dust pan and whisk broom in a certain location, he took my broom and dust pan and put them somewhere else and put some other broom that he was keeping in the closet in it's place. well when I told him about that he told me to essentially get over it. There have been other instances and I'm just not going to let him get away with it anymore. He was pulling up dandelions from the yard and pilling them on the lawn furniture. I told him I found that to be unproductive, but he left them there. I wanted to use the furniture, so I just dumped off the weeds and he had them picked up and in the trash before I got home from work. I just don't think that leaving a mess in common areas is Ok, but because he doesn't want to have a house meeting he is not allowing me to express my feelings about living with room mates in a structured situation. It is almost like he can't imagine anyone else who thinks different then him. Yeah, I needed to write all that, just get it out. I describe B now as a jerk. B's a jerk and A is a drugged up sober guy and me, I'm just to sensitive as I know since people have always told me that. I just take things to personally. Like when they use me as a door mat, I am just supposed to pick myself up and pretend it didn't happen? Seems to me that is living life in denial about some behaviors.

I don't know when I am posting pictures, not tonight.