misery rambling

plan for conquering the world …

from an email with my friend:
>  guess the advice giving comes more naturally. It’s probably BS advice anyway.
All advice is BS …
some BS is Better Suited is all,
and other advice is Beer Speaking …
and since I’m Becoming Stinko (on wine mind you)
it don’t Bother or Sting me
if BeSmitten here
By Some forms
of the reflections on the Biting Stupidity
of the Basic Simplicity, or truth, of my Bumbling Situation …
Damn the torpedoes – BullShit ahead full steam.
I’m watching Frontline and it’s about IRAQ and the ‘Insurgency’.
It’s bloody.
I’m pretty much anti-religious … christian, musilm, hindu, – don’t much care – you’re all off your rockers as far as I’m concerned 🙂
( I actually checked to see how it was spelled, muslim or moslem … and I guessed the less offensive one I guess …. geeze even this Politically Correct game is a bloody guessing game)
But … I’m watching this Frontline, remember, and I’m thinking that if the USA really wants to win the hearts and minds of the Iraqi’s, and the rest of the world, maybe they should just give them networked PC’s and American culture. MTV. Home-Box. Come on, who can resist? Right?
In the final analysis it’s the culture that wins or loses … if your culture is so strong and you’re confident in it’s appeal and allure and supremacy … then put your culture and PC’s where your mouth is and save some GI’s …
How many PC’s is a GI worth anyway?
Really – think about that.
I’m guessing that the average GI takes north of $200K to train and equip … that’s how many wireless, laptop, PC’s? 150? 200?
By now there’s over 2000 dead GI’s in Iraq … this was a country that actually had parties with chicks and booze … not so religious like, say, Iran. You’d think it would be a natural knockover for American Culture, wouldn’t you?
I sympathize with the poor schmucks that got themselves sent to Iraq.
The impetus can be extremely compelling and, even if you don’t believe all that much
– when they start shooting at you … you know which side you are on …
This is a world wide web … think about that.
Some of the people that might possibly read this, and think they’re ‘fighting the good fight’, may be on the ‘opposite side’ from you … hey, if you really believe in some monotheistic god, you’re already on the wrong side as far as I’m concerned …
Hundreds, thousands of young people, mostly men, around the world everyday watch the news and think ‘that’s the good fight – they’re living the life I only dream of’. And they’re not all seeing the same side.
Some speak English and see themselves where the Americans are … some do not speak English and see themselves attacking Americans.
Both / All feel that theirs is the ‘good fight’.
Mutual contradictory truths … another curse of the world
I’d love to blame this on religion but, alas, it doesn’t need religion to exist.
Some part of the fabric of the ‘west’ will contain a mix of ‘christian’ and ‘muslim’ cultural systems … Britain, France, Germany … one or two of these or another will have to deal with ‘quietly-competing’ or ‘co-tolerating’ religio-cultural group mixes in ways that allow them to co-exist without killing each other.
Good luck with that …
This is something in the future, of course, and maybe something that would be worth analysis for the ‘west’ (read USA) … so it can get ahead of the curve … if you want to live with the vipers of religion you’ll have to learn how to create an environment that manages cultural viper dens …
Am I being a cynical atheist here or what?
Really, think about how one can coexist with a religion that has adherents saying things like ‘There is no god but god, god is great!!’
Sorry … but that translates into ‘our way or f**k you’.
I don’t respond well to threats.
All these mono-theistic religions, they’re all the same when push comes to shove, our way or the (eternal) highway.
That’s the way it appears to those of us who do not believe … you can believe that.
Here’s a question:
We live in a world with a broad religious grouping based on ‘christianity’, correct?
Well, there was some sort of religion that the people that ‘Jesus’ led, believed in … a god … the one with .. no name … ooohhh … scary stuff …
So what was that religion called?
Like, Christianity, Christmas – that’s named after ‘Christ’ – which is the ‘office’ or ‘station’ of the man called ‘Jesus’.
Am I wrong?
So what religion did Jesus believe in?
Yes, I think that is what I’m getting to:
What religion did Jesus believe in? Did it have a name? (I’m so bad)
Wait … he was a Jewish gentleman wasn’t he?
What does that make Christians? No, I don’t need an answer …
We put men on the moon nearly 40 years ago … why are we still hagridden with these religions I ask?
Doesn’t anyone find it suspicious that only lunatics and ‘different’ people have visions and experience communications with gods? Fast until you hallucinate and talk to people that aren’t there and be convincing about the story and you can start or hijack a religion.
I need evidence … there is none.
Don’t ask me to accept it all on Faith … that sounds like the hawkers at the magic show. Sorry, that won’t sell here …
How to conquer the world America?
Give ’em all laptops, free downloads and American Culture … that is the best chance at world domination. I suspect that Osamma knows this … he just doesn’t know how to bomb it yet.
The only real problem would be that ‘globalization’ of the culture could take it away from you, America.
Just as the world uses yankee dollars as a happy medium of exchange, if more people outside the USA lived and shared in and created American culture, then someday how it changes and what it becomes might be defined by people that will never set foot on the Americas. Just because there’s more of them than you.
Need an example?
What language do the non-hispanics in the USA (and a lot of the rest of the world) speak?
It’s called English, isn’t it?
But your American english is not England’s english anymore … and that’s just fine with you isn’t it?
Who defines the growth pattern of the commonly accepted and used English in the international community?
Is it Holllywood? That’s not in England is it?
… hey you, you with the hurt feelings – you do remember the warnings at the top don’t you? Rant .. BS … get it … don’t Be So Bloody Serious …

and the news is … mostly good for a change

First, the good news.
I have a new nephew, Noah Dene Austman, who is a welcome addition to the family.
And so it grows … welcome to a good family little Noah. They’ll treat you right here – see you get a good upbringing and start in life.
Next …
mortgage … root words, mort = death and gage = pledge or measure.
measure of / or pledge of death ..
In this case the mortgage insurance company pledged to pay on, either of our’s death, the outstanding debt on the mortgage.
They’ve finally decided that this is what they need to do. That there is nothing standing in the way (or the wings) that will let them out of their pledge …
I think, after months of expensive debt load, I’m allowed a f**king cheer here.
And I’m thinking my first real house party will be a mortgage burning party.
Once the thing is paid out I’ll make multiple photocopies of it … and have a party … and when it’s dark I’ll get everyone to light up a copy and give thanks … to Laurel … and take pictures and video. Burnt offerings … might even give offerings to the roach gods … and put a link to the video/pics in a blog … 21st century life is so different from my 1950’s-base psyche …
Emotional multiple exposure … I can still feel depression in there somewhere … it’s on my face when I’m not expressing something … and loss … anger … pain … numbness … but there’s a part that wants to celebrate too … life/death is so strange …

Can you miss what you missed out on?

40 years on …
1966, April 20th … Eddy Johnson is standing in line at the Post Office in Kenora, Ontario before heading to work in Redditt for Ontario Central Airways. While in line he has a heart attack and dies.
He was my dad.
I was 12 then.
What can I say?
My life is different, I’m sure, from what it might have been had he lived.
I don’t know if it would have been better or worse … he wasn’t a bad man but he wasn’t perfect either. But he would have been a role model and someone to look to and ask for guidance in all those things that had to be figured out on your own because you couldn’t risk looking stupid in front of your friends.
Try teaching yourself shaving.
Becoming a ‘man’ (in the 60’s) whatever that is …
Learning how girls think when you’re brought up to preserve privacy and not talk about ‘it’ …
Deciphering right from wrong when the hypocritical bad guys might be the government?
There’s so many things I can think of, and I’m sure lots more that I missed, that a parent is rather important in helping out the development of.
If there’s anything I’m actually proud of, and there’s not that much, it’s that I turned out as ok as I have in spite of having no Dad around to help me find my path, a correct path.
Sure much credit goes to my mother – I won’t sell her short – she was a good person. A really good person. One of the best moms in my circle of friends … she wasn’t spiteful or prone to anger or pushy or any of those embarrassing-in-your-parent things. If anything she was too nice, helpful and kind.
And I’m sure my father was a good enough model for the small me to notice how to be well behaved enough from that it didn’t screw up my mother’s example of how to coexist with civilized society. Main street mind you, but good people all the same.
But I can only guess at what I missed … maybe that’s part of why I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up.
(Does using that phrase date one?)
Not having a father figure to ‘rebel against’ and define myself as separate and the same as must have had some effect … I just do not know what that might be, never having met a me that grew up with a dad around to have laughter and friction with.
Maybe that means I’m more self defined … or maybe less defined in general.
How the heck would I know?
Some believe that over 7 years all your cells are ‘replaced’ so you are physically a different person.
If you believe that, then 5 people stand between me and that boy who had a dad … maybe 5 stages of difference or more from a ‘me’ that had a ‘dad’.
Had he lived my dad would have been 87 today … my mother lasted until 86.
If he’d lasted that long … my brother and sister and I would have had him around him most of our lives.
What a strange idea it seems …
One thing I can say that definitely pisses me off:
Somewhere along the way I learned that he died on Hitler’s birthday.
So every year on the anniversary of my dad’s death, a day that I’d like to observe in privacy, the nutbars of the world choose to vent their anger and shoot up high schools or blow up buildings … what a bunch of losers … intruding on this day.
And now the day before is half a year removed from my wife’s death, a 19th …

life at the speed of pain at the 6 month marker

WARNING – lots of ill will and hurt beyond this point.
6 months … the 6 month marker.
Someone is there and everything is looking good … then something real bad happens and they’re gone … forever.
And somehow time passes … and while some things are ‘healed’ with time passing … other things just don’t.
Some damage leaves impressions that never leave.
At least that’s the way it appears at the 6 month spot.
Strangely, she was killed on the 19th, which was a Wednesday. This is the 19th and it is also a Wednesday, albeit 6 months on.
A few years before she’d made me promise to give her 40 more years.
I’d been so preoccupied with my father’s death at 47 that my own life had this terminal end at 47. After that I was at a loss, freewheeling … she was real good at turning that around and getting me to agree to 40 more.
It would have been good.
Grandparents. Life in mountains in a small town.
Kids grown up.
Our personal heads leveled and the rocky bits shaken out.
Really in love with each other.
Our happily ever after place …
Well that all disappeared in an instant …
There are lots of things that I could say about this and the last 6 months … but, honestly, right now I’m hoisting a few and it’s been a real bad day in many senses so here’s one thing I can tell you about being 6 months into widowhood the way it’s happened to me:
In one sense I’m damaged.
I look in the mirror and see a face hiding fear.
Fear of many things but fear most of all about getting angry.
6 months ago today the most important person in my world was killed, murdered, slaughtered – taken away in an instant by some bad person. Some f**king bitch from Richmond killed my wife on the highway.
I’m not religious, I do not believe in life after death.
I do not want the bad person to die – she’d would be getting off somehow. I want her to suffer and go to her own personal hell.
BUT even though I would NOT want her dead, some part of me needs to kill … a revenge thing … closure … it’s scary.
I haven’t fought for real since I was 10. I stayed away from PC games for years because I always suspected what I’d learn when I played them … that there’s a certain thrill of the kill … maybe it’s genetic (Viking ancestors and all that). My friends wouldn’t play with me unless I was on the slowest machine … I’m no fun without a handicap.
Or maybe the product of being in and around street gangs from ages 6 to 10 and later … the world I grew up in.
I get the impression that it wouldn’t be a protracted affair. I’m not all that physically imposing so a long fight would not work out in my favour.
No, I know (inside), without thinking, that it has to be done ASAP … the take down/out.
It FEELS like there’s a killer in me … waiting for the need … the opportunity.
Is that stupid or what?
And I’ve apparently worked around this by developing an emotional clamp down.
So I shy away from getting angry … I go into emotional shutdown mode. Not all the emotions go away … just the ones that lead to an anger response or action.
This bothers me on many fronts:
– I can’t experience anger except alone and drunk. In public might not be safe. I auto shutdown anger type emotions there … that’s like out of my control.
– I feel like my emotional range is limited in a way … just like having my legs in casts would limit my physical range of abilities this limits my range of emotional response. Not good.
Life is a stream of happy/sad, made-happy/made-sad experiences. We hope it’s in some kind of balance but that’s just wishful thinking – just ask the millions who die horrible deaths after short miserable lives. Oops, they’re dead and can’t respond.
If you’re lucky enough to win the birth lottery and get born into a ‘prime location’ in the world then you have a long lifetime in which to make or break your happiness / life.
But I stray…
If you do not give the appropriate response to a stimulus how will others know where you are socially?
Sometimes people do things that make you mad to piss you off … and see how you respond.
That happened to me tonight. I think.
Another person (probably most) might have got real public and ANGRY and … I don’t know what because I’m blocked off from that.
But I just asked a ‘concerned’ question and left.
Like – hey – I should be screaming and blowing up but I’m just walking away … at least it seems that way.
And … ending, that, whatever it was. I think it was a kind of friendship thingy … but I find myself at a loss here … maybe I’m stupid or maybe just still numb …
Will I become some sort of social gimp?
Flexes so far and then stops dead?
This really pisses me off.
Real well rounded individual … just ignore the flat spot where the anger used to be.
Personally I’ve always worried more about the guys who ‘never get angry’ … now I find myself becoming one and it’s not what I want.
Not that I want to be angry … but anger is sometimes the correct feeling.
Actions are a different matter all together.
Tonight I probably blew away a friendship because there’s no gray area in my anger response.
When it finally, briefly, shows up it’s at full volume, f**k you and the whole world kind of feeling. Then numbness and deadly cold cut-off. Like so quick I can’t even scream!!!
Which really sucks … don’t make me angry or I’ll walk away?
What’s with that?
So … I’m damaged.
And probably minus one friend … oh well … she was pissed (with me too).
Sigh …
And so it stumbles on …
Someday, maybe, Maya will read this.
The nice part of me hopes it brings understanding.
A smoldering part of me hopes she’s in HELL when she reads it.
Guess who Maya is …
Laurel was my wife.
I won’t go into how much better the world would be with her in it instead of you, Maya.
There’s not enough time …
Laurel would probably have been very angry with you Maya, but she probably would have harboured a hope that you might find a way to a better life than you have. Eventually anyway.
And if Laurel’s spirit carries on in any way in those she loved then there’s probably ‘hope’ for ‘you’ out there somewhere. Maybe even in the ‘Laurel’ in me.
But I tell you here and now that ‘I’ sincerely hope bad things happen to ‘you’ Maya.
That’s ‘me’ talking.
Minus ‘Laurel’.
Don’t die. Please.
Just shrivel up and wither away … slowly.
Burn your brain out with drugs and rot.
Is that bitter? Cruel?
Aww …
From what I understand your life is that of a loser.
Leading to a rotten end – like your brother, Ben.
Prove me wrong!
When you look in the mirror do you think ‘Victim’ or ‘Killer’?
Is there anyone else in there?
I hurt someone and I can say Sorry … You hurt them and they’re dead. Oops.
So – Turn your life around … I dare you !
Laurel might just believe you could do it … she could see the good and potential in people.
I can see that too … if it’s there … I just want YOU to experience failure and pain and suffering.
Prove I’m wrong … I bet you cannot.
Hidden in all this sour grapes is the sweet knowledge that I don’t even have to do anything to you … most likely the way you conduct your life will cause you your own suffering. Hopefully you won’t hurt or maim or kill too many innocent people along the way.
Your life leads nowhere … good. Take your time …
I’m not divine – you won’t find any forgiveness here. Just condemnation.
Loser …
Killer …
Go to hell … just don’t die first.
… so I can connect with my anger … let us hope it never connects with you Maya …
I can’t blame you for tonight Maya, you weren’t even there.
Whoops – you were in a sense.
Thanks for helping make me an emotional cripple you bitch!!
So … 6 months … means loss and hurt and a lot of pain and anger to me.
She really was the best part of me …
Life can suck.
6 and Suck … both begin with S.
Today’s letter is ‘S’
Sad and Stupid and Sorry begin with S … as does Shitfaced … think I’ll carry on with that now.
So long from here … wherever this is … they have Coronas here …

book finished

A departure from personal anguish … I read a book.
This is more significant than it appears … I have only completed one book since we moved to this town. I’ve been trying to finish a Ludlum novel for months now – something that wouldn’t have used up a whole weekend before but something’s changed and it was starting to concern me.
But it would appear that the need to escape from personal bulls**t can overcome even 5 Corona Extras and allow me to read. So all is not lost. On the reading front anyway … my heart’s a definite write-off.
And what book did I plow through? (started last night, finished today)
Quicksand by John Brunner
An older Science Fiction one, from 1967.

240 pages … from the days when a novel was bite sized … before the need to construct tomes and epics infected the genre.

This one was a library discard.
Slightly depressing, almost mainstream and not SF – almost.
Brunner was always one of my favourite authors … but I can’t say this was one of my favourites of his. (I think Shockwave Rider is close to first)
Now to get on with the 30 or so books waiting for me …
and leave my bulls**t life back here in the so-called real world.

work ethic part 2 – the speed of paperwork

Paperwork is part of nearly everyone’s job these days.
Some people have no problems with it while others just can’t get it done.
And, without knowing the context and factors of any given situation, I can’t blame the others for faulty or late paperwork processing. The reasons may be out of their control.
Or maybe they just hate it and leave it until it’s past due … I don’t know.
Honestly, in my past I’ve been in all these categories.
And maybe, if Karma exists, I’m paying for my past laziness or bad habits now …
Whatever the reason, when paperwork gets left and not done there are always effects and ramifications. I think there’s a general feeling out there that slow paperwork in your job is just some sort of extra friction loss in the overall faceless machine that runs our society. As a group, many people harbour antagonistic feelings about the faceless machine they find themselves serving every day. So a little bit of slowdown can be felt as a personal piece of rebellion against the machine. And then they don’t feel so bad about taking an extra amount of time to get around to it.
And there’s that other group, the ones that get to determine how the machine’s resources are assigned. How many people does it take to perform some role? Let’s just use the barest minimum so we can look good because we’re saving our taxpayers / shareholders money. It let’s them shave off what they see as excessive while supposedly maintaining the same service level. Business managers and politicians get to make these decisions. They like words like expedient and efficient. And love numbers that make them look good.

Well that’s nice for all of you office trolls, political hacks and machine churls out there. I’m happy that your life is somehow enhanced.

The problem is that a lot of the ramifications of that paperwork slowdown rain down into the lives of real people. The faceless machine parts (companies, government offices) don’t suffer – real people do.

I’m one of those real people and every month that goes by I have to spend more and more money servicing my debt because somewhere along the daisy chain of paperwork there’s one or two forms that still have to be filled out … months later on. This month it’s over $800 – by summer it could be $900. It should be down under $200. If could be if only the paperwork was done.

One thing being waited on is a police report. Specifically the results of a criminal investigation. I don’t know what investigation there is beyond the accident scene analysis and that, the accident, was nearly 6 months ago. There may be more to it OR the police office could be so understaffed that it’s just taking as long as it takes. I won’t blame anyone here …

The other thing being waited on is a questionnaire from a doctor’s office. All they have to do here is fill in the blanks with information from the patient record of one or more visits that happened a while ago … is that too hard to get done? It should take less time and effort than the original visit. I’m not saying rush it and make mistakes … just get it done in a timely fashion and get it sent off.
I mean, come on – what’s the problem?

When all this paperwork slowdown gets through I’ll probably have spent an extra couple of thousand dollars because I couldn’t move my debt into a lower interest vehicle and had to pay bills with credit cards as a result. Making it worse and worse.
Somewhere down this path there’s place where the available credit is all used up. And the income doesn’t cover the month debts.

If the paperwork hasn’t moved by then I have to do something or go bankrupt or lose or sell my house. Which might be hard since the mortgage is one of the things on hold … waiting for paperwork …

So pleasedo the damned paperwork in your life. Somewhere, someone will be waiting for something that is waiting for something that is waiting for you …
When you screw the machine, you screw people. BUT the machine is faceless and feels no pain … people get hurt. So you’re really screwing people. People like me.

Some woman killed my wife and now bureaucracy is strangling my life.

She died instantly … I get to drag on and on …


work ethic

In the brief experience I’ve had dealing with insurance companies I can state one observation:
They go out of their way to dig down to get the details because in the details they may find something that serves their purpose – to get out from under paying out a claim.
BUT when they are performing a service for a client, the details aren’t necessarily all that important – it doesn’t affect their incomes or payouts.
Take the case of mine and my late wife’s mortgage for example.
The insurance company is doing due diligence by their stock holders and waiting for all the paperwork before making a decision. Even though she was killed in a highway accident (not her fault) they can ask every doctor she might have seen in the last 5 years if they told her something that she might have neglected to pass on to the mortgage company. As I understand it this is so that they might be able to enforce the details of the contract which would let them escape paying. Because of a missed checkbox or something small like that.
Think that over for a second: You might be standing in line at the bus stop and some drunk drives off the road and kills you and because you forgot to mark one little checkbox in a sea of paperwork when you were buying a house your spouse ends up carrying the mortgage.
Back to my case: While this ‘review’ goes on they are being gracious about making the payments. That’s nice until things go awry and somehow payment schedules become out of sync and payments are missed.
How attentive to details are they then?
Insurance company sends mail or fax to the mortgage company, and cc’s me, and there are multiple mistakes in the little details. In one case they are trying to be helpful but there are so many errors that the mortgage company would need a crystal ball to figure out which mortgage they are talking about … no mortgage number cited and my last name changed to my late wife’s (which is different).
I shouldn’t single just them out but they’re the ones causing me the most grief and money in the long run.
Maybe there’s a good reason for this. Over worked people? To many forms to fill out? Someone has their own problems and have no choice but to carry on working but this is the result. Could be … but in that case I’d say they should get some time off.
I can understand that a Coroner’s report might take months to complete even though I’m not sure of why.
I can’t understand why a simple questionnaire sits in a doctor’s office for months without being filled in and sent away. It’s a minor chore that doesn’t put any money into the doctor’s wallet – I understand that. But it’s a minor chore that effectively holds up my life and will ultimately cause me to have to shell out thousands of dollars more to service debt than I should have to.
But, hey – it’s not their problem, right?
What difference does it make to them if I have to sell the house or go bankrupt? They don’t even know what I look like so why the heck should they care …
Someone suggested letting them know how important it is. BUT I’d hate for them to rush the job and screw up some little detail which would take months or years to undo …
ARGHH – If they all had good work ethics then this rant would never have to happen …