America Needs to Get a Second Job

I have to admit to finding myself just incredibly baffled by all of the logic and reasoning behind why our elected officials in Washington, DC seem to be acting like a squabbling group of pre-teens on the student council planning the budget for a school dance.  I can honestly appreciate that the Republicans are fed up with deficit spending- I agree with them!  I whole heartedly believe that there has got to be a practical way to deal with the redonculous national debt that I and my children will inherit, but I find it to be unbelievably irresponsible for the Republicans to attempt to try this without raising any taxes.  I’m not a big fan of taxes- believe me- but how in God’s name to you pay off that unsecured credit card if you don’t get a second job?

I understand that this is a simplistic analogy.  I pose this question to those who would like to disagree with it- if we take the current revenue stream and make the cuts that are being called for as well as keeping the tax rates artificially low how are we going to deal with the principal of our debt?  Sure we can service the interest, but without a combination of cuts and increased revenue we will spend too much time just paying the interest on the card and be in debt for the rest of our natural lives.

That being said- I would love to beg congress to suck it up and take that second job at McDonald’s (AKA- compromise you stubborn SOB’s) and start to set the country right because I can guarantee that all of your debate about the state of the economy and job creation won’t mean crap if Moody’s downgrades us and we start paying higher interest on everything.  Hell, you could take that money that we’ll have to pay the banking industry for the stupidity of letting the country default and it would equal the revenue that would have been gained by getting rid of the Bush tax cuts.  Just saying.

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D Day Approaches

I’ve spent part of my day packing and part sitting on the couch avoiding packing.  Tomorrow and the day after a friend will come over to help me, but I need to sort through the garbage first.  It’s such an ego kick every time I do this because I have very little choice but to designate my life into a few select categories: Keep, Toss, or Donate.

This can be a cathartic experience and it will be for me, but with a hint of regret.  I have been meaning to go through my home and make the choice to eliminate the clutter for a while, but there are boxes that I still have trouble going through.  There has been a box in my living room for 2 years now that has all of the remnants of my office, from the job that I was laid off from, and I haven’t been able to bring myself to go through it.  I’m sure that 99% of it is garbage, but it seems like to acknowledge that fact makes it real and not a memory that I can forget.  Yes, it’s a screwy way of thinking about it- i.e. if I get rid of it it won’t be in my face- but there’s also a part of me that doesn’t want to forget exactly how that felt and also still doesn’t believe that I’ve learned the lesson that I was meant to from the experience, hence the reminder.

Designating the things that you hold on to as “Toss” is also a tricky thing.  What qualifies the things that have been given to us or that we’ve brought into our home as expendable?  I was going through a drawer a couple of weeks ago to pull some things that I was passing on to a friend and came across a valentines day gift that an old boyfriend had given to me.  He and I didn’t implode, we just didn’t continue, or more to the point, I didn’t continue the relationship with him, but it was civil.  I’d held on to it because it was a memory, but as I looked at it, I heard my brain saying- you really don’t need to take that with you.  I knew that I didn’t want to display the object (a lovely carved stone piece) and I knew that it was silly to throw it away, so I passed it on.  My kitchen, one of my loves, is being handed down to another friend who is moving into her own place within the next year, so I’m boxing that up for her.  But the vast majority of the things in my home are going to be thrown into the dumpster tomorrow after the truck comes to empty it.

Why do we choose to keep some things and not others?  When we purchase things, it’s never with the intention of tiring of them and tossing it away, but isn’t that exactly what we all do at least half of the time?  I’m keeping books and knitting/crochet supplies.  I’ve got a jewelry box that will hold the little and not valuable jewelry that I own, my mixer, stuff that I cannot easily replace and that I still have a viable use for.  But the reason that this is so painful is that each time I do this, I seem to be getting rid of more and more of the items I’ve had for years that were designated as sentimental.  I look at them now and I can’t remember why I’ve held on to the item, or I just know that it’s silly to keep carrying it and that hurts- it’s like throwing away your past as unimportant even though you know darned well that it is not the case.

There is also the delusion that we all live under when a big move takes place that it’s a brand new start and that it’s the time to fix the things about yourself that you don’t like, etc…  My mother told me that every time we moved, that I could become a new person by leaving the old one in whatever state we were leaving.  I determined by the time that I got to high school that I don’t have the energy to become someone new every time we move, I am only able to be me, and unfortunately that is not a very popular, likeable, or even easy to know person.  I’m cold, sarcastic, guarded, and in my own world most of the time because I have no expectation that anyone really cares what I do or have to say.  In a way, that’s why I continue to blog, knowing full well that I really don’t have many readers- I just need to feel like I’m attempting to communicating in an unobtrusive way I guess.

Getting back to the point- moving is never easy for anyone, but it does present an opportunity.  Not that you need to reinvent yourself if you don’t want to, it provides an opportunity to take those things that you regret and be a better person in a place with a much shorter memory.  You can learn from your mistakes and make new ones while hopefully using the lessons you’ve learned up to that point to mitigate the damage that your new mistakes will cause.  Because, after all, life is messy, it’s very often painful, and if it doesn’t hurt like hell every so often, then you really aren’t living and can’t appreciate the beauty around you.  Take the time to remind yourself that the future is only what you make of it, so stop and think about how you can make it a better place to be.

Old, abandoned buildings: Cool or creepy?

I’ve never used the plinky prompt feature, but this one seemed interesting.

What is the appeal of abandoned and decaying buildings to us mere mortals?  As always- I can’t speak for the rest of the world, but for me- I find them to be beautiful.  If there were people in them, they would bore me.  The fact that a place has gone fallow, that it’s potential lies dormant evokes a romanticized image in my head of a history that I want to believe is there.

I did a google image search in my extensive research for this post and saw the image on the left.  It appears to be a warehouse or commercial space’s back entrance with some graffiti declaring war on the world. The first thing that I want to know- what has the world done to deserve such a declaration?  It will devolve from there into a mental world of post appocalyptic fun where John Travolta and Val Kilmer will battle it out Deadliest Warrior style for the right to rule the world.  Yes- I know that I need to get a hobby.

There are so many potential stories in an old house that I am like a kid in a candy store.  The fact that each building has been left, all alone, with nobody left to care for them, speaks to a sad past, filled with love and loss or a struggle to keep the family home in a great financial crisis.  Did the building once function as a speak easy?  A brothel?  The home of a good Christian family?  A good pagan family who preformed rituals in the back yard?

The picture of the house on the right makes me wonder whether it was the home of a well established family who fell on hard times or whether the only person left to inherit the land had enlisted in WWII and not come home, leaving his father and mother to waste away until the property went into disarray.  Maybe the son did return, but the trauma of the War left him a shell of a man who never married and has left the house all alone- the only family to visit being a well intentioned nurse and the mail man.

I guess that I enjoy thinking about what might have been because it’s much nicer to create a story that isn’t true than to figure out the truth about the sad state of a majestic place.  For instance, the picture to the right is of an abandoned hospital in Northern Wales.  There was probably not anything dramatic that happened to give me a fantastic story as to why it is no longer used.  The reality would look more like a population shift led to too few patients and the company running the hospital was unable to afford to keep it opened and since all of the people had been moving on, there was nobody interested in purchasing and repurposing the building.

The ghosts of a buildings past, the history hidden within it’s wall will remain.  In a hospital, the deaths, the births, the sorrows, the joys, will all remain, but there will be no witnesses.  An old factory, whose owners had been forced to close the doors due to an economic slowdown, or who had been driven out of business, will stand silently, a testament to mans innovative nature and self destructive tendencies.  The windows will crack and fall away as the heat warms them and the winds cool them.  The winter will blanket the roof and the forests will reclaim the floors as the spring comes and we will move on with our lives.  I think that Old, Abandoned buildings are beautiful and cool while at the same time being just a little creepy.  Either way- they are a natural resource that colors the landscape of a place and reminds us of its history and speaks to its future.

Transformers: Dark of the Moon

Happy Thursday everyone!  A little late, but better than never, I’ve finally seen Transformers 3 (in 3D no less!!).  While in Philadelphia I was able to meet up with Mr. Batduck and geek out a little by going to watch a movie that we both know Mrs. Batty would not have had any interest in so we ended up at the theater of the King of Prussia Mall with our Real D 3D glasses on.

I have enjoyed the franchise up to this point, but was really not too thrilled with the second movie.  The plot and action seemed thrown in to make a loud noise as opposed to advancing the story, but they do appear to have rectified this in the 3rd installment- to a point.  The comedic moments were very funny, the new chick (who looked a lot like the other girl to me) did a great job and her character added some dimension to Sam’s story-line in my humble opinion, and the action made more sense because they were fighting off an invasion.  I’m not sure why that made a difference for me, but it did.

All in all- I’ll give this a 4 out of 5 for sheer entertainment value.  Good job Mr. Bay!