Welcome to the Misadventures of Widowhood blog!

In January of 2012 my soul mate of 42 years passed away after nearly 12 years of living with severe disabilities due to a stroke. I survived the first year after Don’s death doing what most widows do---trying to make sense of my world turned upside down. The pain and heartache of loss, my dark humor, my sweetest memories and, yes, even my pity parties are well documented in this blog.

Now that I’m a "seasoned widow" the focus of my writing has changed. I’m still a widow looking through that lens but I’m also a woman searching for contentment, friends and a voice in my restless world. Some people say I have a quirky sense of humor that shows up from time to time in this blog. Others say I make some keen observations about life and growing older. I say I just write about whatever passes through my days---the good, bad and the ugly. Comments welcome and encouraged. Let's get a dialogue going! Jean

Saturday, May 18, 2019

Hissy-Fit Rant and my Three Day Time Out


It was Saturday morning and I found myself at the Breakfast only Café. I hadn’t been there in a month but I go there often enough that the waitress knows what I want: no straw with my water, cream with my coffee, scrambled eggs, bacon, English muffin with one tub of orange marmalade. She probably remembers me because I tip three bucks on the $9.95 bill. Why 30%? Because older women are notoriously stereotyped as being bad tippers and if there is anything I don’t want in life, it’s to be stereotyped based on gender. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

I took the gunslingers’ table in the far corner of the room, my back to the wall, where I could see everyone because I’m a voyeur at heart. The annual 15K and 25K races took place in town earlier that morning and the restaurant was busy with people stopping on their way home from running, watching or cheering from the sidelines. I don’t get how and why people from all over the world come to run marathons. Where do they find the time and money for that? A woman at a near-by table was wearing a tee-shirt that read: “I make this shirt look good.” Really? She was coat hanger thin, probably ran to the restaurant from two counties over. I don’t wear message tee-shirts but if I did, I’d want one that said,” Bored women, please talk to me!” 

In this age of mass shootings I don’t understand why there aren’t fist fights over the gunslingers’ table. The people sitting just inside the door would be the first to die if a shooter came in and isn’t it a sad statement on our society that anyone has passing thoughts like this or that on the first day of school teachers have to talk about what to do if an active shooter comes in. How many more mass shootings has to take place before we all stand up and demand that our lawmakers get their noses out of the RNA’s underpants and do something meaningful? Kids shouldn’t have to decide between fight and flight. Heck, no one should! For starters, close the gun show background check loophole. It could be done in a day because back in February the House passed the Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2019 but Mitch McConnell won’t let the Senate vote on it. It’s just sitting there, stonewalled like McConnell did with the Merrick Garland up or down vote on Obama’s pick for a Supreme Court Justice and we all know how that ended. Mitch needs to go so we can get someone in there who will let Congress work the way our Founding Fathers intended it to work!  Rant off, well maybe not off but it's put on the back burner.

Monday through Wednesday the body shop had my car tied up to repair the hit-and-run damage to my back bumper and adjacent parts. When I went in for the estimate the guy told me they would arrange for a rental car to meet me at the body shop but when I got there to drop off my car the young Chicky-Poo at the front desk said they hadn’t done it and claimed they never do that. She was about a minute and half older than the socks I was wearing so I stereotyped her as either being incompetent or she just got the job and ‘never’ in her book only goes back a few days. She ended up driving me to the car rental place and she turned out to be a nice kid with a baby still in diapers. But in the future I’ll be keeping notes of all my conversations with service people with names and dates because who would invent a detail like them arranging for a rental car to meet me if the guy hadn’t said it? If your answer is an elderly person on the edge of dementia, don’t say it out loud.

I left the car rental place, drove home, and parked the rental in the garage which fascinated the dog when he found a shiny brilliant blue Ford in the space where my generic gray Trax usually sits. Every time he had to go outside to pee he walked around the Ford, making sure it was still there. On the third day I drove back to the rental place, putting a grand total of 15 miles on the car in three days at the cost of $75 for the optional insurance which in hindsight was stupidest decision I've made in years. When the rental rep was explaining the option he was talking at Ferrari sports car speed and I was processing the information at horse and buggy speed. It only covered the $1,000 deductible left over from what my insurance company would have covered, should I have gotten in an accident with the rental. Yes, the one that sat in my garage for three days. Stupid! Stupid! Stupid! The actual rental fee was another $81 paid for by the insurance company. Damn hit and run driver that started this whole chain of events! The body work cost $991.66 and thankfully, the insurance company covered it all but they will probably find a way to up my premiums. Isn’t that how it works?

The month of May has been and will continue to be the Money Pit Month. If I was a drinking woman, I’d drown my sorrows about now. But I’m not so I think I’ll go to Starbucks instead. I’ve been wanting a S’Mores Frappuccino, which is back for the summer by popular demand. Hooray for small blessings!  ©

The quote is attributed to Gloria but I guess she didn't say it. The author is still unknown.

22 comments:

  1. Before the school shootings and other well known attacks, there was a massacre in Coperas Cove, Texas. My chiropractor was at the family restaurant with her parents and a gun shooter came in and starting shooting. He walked around the people who ducked under tables and or were hit by the first barrage. Her father was killed and I think her mother too, but she survived. She was on the news quite a bit after that. It was sad. So, good idea to sit where you can be as aware as possible. You never know anymore.

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    1. What a terrible way to lose your parents! She probably has to relive that experience every time a new shooting happens.

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  2. That quote attributed to Gloria Steinem really says it all.

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  3. As it happens, today is the one year anniversary of the school shooting in Santa Fe, Texas, literally just down the road from me. I have a lot of thoughts on the issue, and not all of them have to do with gun laws, but this isn't a day for that -- at least, for me, and for most of the people here. One interesting note: while remembrances of the victims are all over radio and tv, I've not yet heard a single local commentator speaking the name of the perpetrator. In fact, they're making a point of it. In the larger scheme of things, it may be a small point, but maybe not. Refusing to give the shooters the publicity they crave is important.

    I'm really lucky that the car repair place I used has an Enterprise franchise in-house. They're also an approved Farmer's Insurance repair shop, so I had nothing to do but drive to the collision center, drop of my car, walk one building over and pick up my rental. The insurance company already had made all the arrangements, so it was just a sign on the dotted line deal.

    I just paid my six month auto premium, so I'm hoping by the time the next bill comes due, they'll have forgotten all about this little boo-boo. Not likely, but hope springs eternal!

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    1. I agree that it's an important point for the media not to say the names of the shooters and for the most part most of them follow don't. I also agree that it's going to take more than gun control laws to stop this ugly tread but we've got to start some place! For one, they need more school psychiatrists to work with kids.

      Your experience with Enterprise is what I expected to get and have gotten in the past from the same body shop. I really think the girl screwed up and rather than admit it she just said they don't make those arrangements with Enterprise. Both the claims guy at the insurance office and the one who wrote the estimate at the body shop said they'd have a car waiting.

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    2. I agree that the shooter's name should not be publicized. It only gives other crazies ideas to be immortalized this way. How about the media releasing the names of all the politicians that are preventing gun control from happening every time there is another mass shooting instead? With their constituency office addresses and phone numbers.

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    3. Good idea! I imagine that information is available in the groups pushing for tighter laws. I personally don't think they read letters that come in if they are against tightening the laws. What we need to do is support the candidates and people in office who get an F rating from the NRA. They need to know the public is behind their efforts.

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  4. Unfortunately, it will never change because the big shots control everything and all they want is money not lives. That's what I see. Mitch McConnel is satan in a suit. He won't allow anything that will be good for the American people. As long as the GOP gets their way. Isn't it amazing that people are so silly when you have to deal with them. It's like the thing that we have to do our daughter. The first arrangement went well for years bur then some idiot wanted to change the entire procedure and now all we have are problems. It drives us nuts.
    Jean, our money pit is the month of October. I guess everyone has a pit. LOL See ya my friend.

    Cruisin Paul

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    1. I'm just glad every month isn't a money pit money!

      The people in Mitch's state love him which is one reason I'd never want to live Kentucky. Beautiful state, though. I can't imagine what this country will look like in 50 years if we don't turn things around and get rid of the self-centered attitudes of people in office.

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  5. I agree with you about Mitch, and that quote is absolutely brilliant.

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  6. Good golly. Now we have to call service companies the day before to remind them of their obligation?

    Wouldn't it be nice to have psychologists and psychiatrists more available (and more affordable)? I don't think our state has a school nurse at each school these days! Maybe one for the whole district. My sister-in-law VOLUNTEERED two days a month at her kids' schools when they were growing up.

    Young people seem to have more psychological issues these days.

    John Oliver is spot on!

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    1. Kids have more psychological issues because of social media and online bullying, in my opinion, plus less interaction with parents. It breaks my heart when I see families in restaurants and parents and kids are all on their devices and not talking to each other. We also have a whole generation who was raised with gun violence as a possibility in their classrooms. When we were kids we could be naive and innocent practically to high school graduation. Kids now think about world issues at a very young age.

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  7. We rent cars when we are away on trips and that whole supplemental insurance thing is such a pain. They make it vaguely threatening like if you don't buy it, you will lose your home in the event of a fender bender while their rental car is out of rotation. It's easy to get taken in. My husband stands firm in his no and I hold my breath always thinking we'll be screwed in case of accident.

    I've taken to holding Mitch McConnell responsible for the demise of the Union. It's bad enough having an incompetent, lunatic president, but to buttress him and protect him and use him for even more nefarious means is just evil. If not for McConnell impeachment would have rid us of this guy before now.

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    1. Mitch is an extremely wealthy person. I don't understand why he has sold his soul so late in life.

      I'm glad I'm not the only one who gets confused/scared over the pressure to get that insurance. Nothing to do but put it behind me when the credit card comes due. Lesson learned.

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    2. ASK your auto insurance agent. Mine tells me my own insurance will cover everything (except deductible) and I trust her more than the rental car company.

      We don't have TV service so the boys are not subjected to all the horrific things that are going on. I remember when Kate was 5-6 and walked in on us watching the news ... about Sadam Hussein ... crying big tears after Dad explained he was a "bad guy" ... and said "Well, I bet his Mother loves him"

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    3. That's what the car rental place did tell me but all I heard was "it's going to cost me a $1,000 if I get in an accident." When I got home I realized that's the same gamble I drive around with every day.



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  8. I can relate to much of your angst, not the least of which is the inconvenience of car rental! And, for that matter, gun control, but don't start me. And marathons. Ah, well...

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  9. Hi, thanks for visiting my blog. I dropped over to check you out - your blog title doesn't sound familiar - and I completely enjoyed your post, your style of writing, you sense of humor - all of it. I have decided to visit more frequently. I am with you completely on the gun issue!! I think "thoughts and prayers" are a waste of time and the phrase is used now so much as to be meaningless. Actions. That is all that counts! And I checked out another post of yours from January of this year - on Marie Kondo, and I agree with you there as well. Except that I totally couldn't get on board with the folding stuff! If it gets in the right drawer - I am happy. Yes to minimalism but the topic is broad and open to many interpretations! So I think of myself as an "Enough-tist." Ha! I have done a few posts on de-cluttering and downsizing - having moved into a condo after 30 years in a very large townhouse. But they are mostly just reflections on what worked for me - and why I felt compelled to shed tons of stuff - not a book worthy process or anything.

    Anyway, nice to meet you. Will be back again.

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    1. Thanks! Nice to meet you, too. I don't know how I found your blog but I totally loved the 'Hillary" post I read and know I'll be visiting again. I'll have to look for your "Enough-tist" posts on decluttering. It seems like I'll been in decluttering mode for the six years.

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