Saturday, January 24, 2015

Benefits Of Gaming

   Strike not having a good, week, I've been having a bad month. Things just aren't going right. I say that not to garner sympathy, but to clarify that I am in a BAD FUCKING MOOD. I've been in bitch-mode for weeks now, just so we can set the tone here a little. I've had to cancel plans, I've had to downsize my grocery bill, and I've had to pay a bill or two late, and I HATE paying bills late. I can't stress that enough. This month constitutes the first month I've paid a bill late in over three years, and yes, I remember that, I can say that for sure, because the last time I paid a bill late was December 2012. I remember that shit. I have anxiety attacks when I pay shit late. It's like, two days late, and I think they are gonna shut my cable off and turn off my electricity and own my friggin' soul, over the overdue doctor's office copay. Yeah, something's wrong with me; my sister calls it paranoia. Whatever.
   So I get on facebook, because maybe taking to some of my friends will help me feel better. But whenever you are feeling badly, getting on facebook is a bad idea. After two seconds, I'm having a heart attack because someone's been shot, someone's committed hate crimes, someone's hurt children, someone's hurt animals, and there's been a twenty car pile up or some God-awful shit, and everyone has posted the videos, and for some reason, all those damn videos start playing as soon as you get on facebook. It's like, shit, you thought you were feeling bad before; look at this bullshit stupid assholes get up to. Don't you feel better now?
    No. No, I don't feel better after looking at all that evil shit. Makes me wonder sometimes if those end-of-the-world wack-os are on to something, because damn, all this bad stuff. And I already feel bad, so it's like an endless spiral of badness that I can't seem to break out of.
   But I feel better now. Why? Not a damn thing has changed. But I just spent two hours killing darkspawn and red templars, so somehow, I just feel better. And now I can deal with shit just a little bit better, because I took the time to do something fun, that I enjoy. So that's my sage advice for the day. Maybe it's not worth a crap, but maybe it is. If you are just feeling like everything is overwhelming you, go kill darkspawn. And take Blackwall with you, because he approves of that shit.
   Sometimes we just need to take a step back and take a time out. And yeah, I know that the real world is still there, and yeah, I'll deal with it, but sometimes we all need a break. That's what today's post is about. Just take a friggin' break - before you snap. Maybe it's common sense, but just earlier today, I was fretting myself in circles over issues that I've already done all I can to fix, and all that's needed is a little time and patience. It's had to have common sense when you've got yourself that worked up, and who doesn't ever get worked up over financial issues every now and again? Fix what you can, and go find something fun to do. Break time - and right now, that means I have an Inquisition to build. Bye folks. 

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

It Is What It Is

   It's been a few months, right? My computer finally just crapped out on me. And there was all that holiday stuff going on. Sometimes when I'm juggling all the tasks and crap that I have to do, I can manage to keep all the balls up in the air... Other times a few of the balls get dropped. When it became a massive struggle to just keep my computer from crashing for just 5 measly minutes, this blog became one of the balls that fell to the floor. THUD.
   That's life sometimes. Being a single mom is not easy. Not that being any kind of a parent is ever easy. But it is what it is. And after a while, you pick the shit you dropped on the floor up and you keep on keeping on. And that's what this post is. Have you ever written a blog post on the little mini IPad that your daughter got from Grandma on Christmas? An IPad that you snuck out from under her as she slept? (Yeah, not kidding there, this kid was cuddling with it like it was a damn teddy bear.) Well, I have. And this little hunt and peck that I'm having to do with the onscreen keyboard is going to insure that my first post after a three month break is a short one. But never fear. She has some kind of wireless keyboard that goes with the biatch (and I just had a major fight with autocorrect to keep biatch as biatch and not batch) and I'm gonna get that sucker charging ASAP.
   At any rate, hopefully everybody had great holidays. Next up - (giggling manically) tax season. Have fun with that BS. Mine are done, and just waiting to be accepted. May the tax gods -  otherwise known as the IRS - be kind to this little tax payer and not audit me this year. It's happened once, and once was enough, even though it turned out I was in the clear. Oh well. My catch phrase lately seems to be a long drawn out sigh and the phrase 'it is what it is.' Just one of those things. We all have to deal sometimes. And right now, I'm dealing with the atrocity that is this IPad's autocorrect. Good grief. 

Friday, November 7, 2014

Why Customers Cannot Always Be Right

   What happened to 'The customer is always right?' I had a customer ask me this recently after I was unable to comply with his request. The problem was, however, that he wanted an item that had gone up in price to be charged at the price is was last week, when it was on sale. I had to respectfully decline doing that, then I had to call a supervisor on his insistence, and then after the supervisor had left - after again declining his request - I was treated to a lecture about how I should be able to change the price on a product without needing supervisor permission, which slowly downgraded to just plain out-and-out insults.
   Personally, I can see the reason why cashiers cannot just change prices on merchandise. The store - any store - has to make a profit. They have to make enough money to buy more merchandise, pay employees, pay for things like building rent (or purchase) electricity, advertising, and a whole slew of other things, which include covering the cost of the item being purchased itself. And if cashiers could just change the prices of things of their own free will, well, I'm sorry, but I've worked with the public enough to know that there would be plenty of people abusing that - cashiers and customers alike. Cashiers would be making things as cheap as possible for friends and family, and customers would be demanding 2 cent products, or even free. I'm sorry, but if you don't think that is true, then you have NOT worked in retail. And as much as you may hate the fact, the company you are buying from does need to make a profit to keep on running a business. They can't if all their employees and customers and running amok with the prices - rules are often made for a reason.
   Then there can be the heaps of abuse that can be smothered on the people who work in places such as mine. I've had a woman tell me, "Shouldn't you let a teenager do this job?" Seriously? My company has a policy that cashiers need to be eighteen or older to run the register. Or they used to; it's been seven years since I started working there, and I don't tend to run around asking people their ages. When I was hired on at my company, however, they required cashiers to be eighteen or older and to have a high school diploma or a GED.
   But even if that were not the case, if you are going up to someone - anyone - and saying garbage like this, then you are wrong; customer or not. It is never okay to be an asshole and this type of comment is assholery at it's finest. Not that anyone needs to know my business, but this job is how I support myself and my daughter, and no, I am not ashamed of this. I refuse to be ashamed. But whether you think I should be or not, you still have no right to come up to a stranger and start trying to force your life views on said person. No one likes that, not even the people who do it.
    Common decency and commonsense need to be the keys to dealing with everything, and this does not change when you go into your local grocery store. Just because you are the customer, that does not give you the inherent right to become a giant ass-hat. Asking us to do things that are against company policy can get us fired, and that makes you wrong. No cliche saying changes this. You are wrong. Also, being a jerk is not a right either. Everyone deserves common courtesy. And saying that 'I chose to become a cashier' also does not justify being an asshole to me while I am working. It's not okay.
   The point of the matter is just this: no matter what we do, we are all people, and we deserve respect. Everything would go a lot more smoothly if all of us remember this fact. And you can't be right when you are doing things that will get other people into trouble (like getting them fired) or being rude, at least, you can't when you're coming through my line. Which may be one of the reasons that my store doesn't hire teenagers to run the registers; an adult with life and work experience can be much harder to push around then a kid who's working their first job and has only high school experience.  

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

You Don't Stop Being You After Becoming A Parent

   I've heard a lot of people say that they've changed a lot after becoming parents, and that's a great thing. You should constantly be changing because you are growing as an individual, so I'm not saying that parenthood doesn't change you, because parenthood should change you. But that being said, parents still need to have some of their old interests; parents still need to have interests outside of the home.
   I had someone tell me once that when they became a parent, the things that mattered to them didn't matter anymore; they weren't worried about old friends or old interests, and just focused on the hubby and the baby. To me, that is a recipe for disaster. I know that I am not a professional psychiatrist here, but as a professional parent, parenting can drive you bat-shit crazy, and you are going to need a break from your inner parenting world. Also, this seems kind of sad to me. Sometimes friends to drop out of your life; you outgrow them, or move, or whatever, but to purposely decide that because you have a kid, you have no room for friends - that seems a bit crazy to me.
   You are going to need someone to talk to one day. Someone adult. One day you are going to need to talk to someone about something other than what page they want to color next or what sound does a dog make, and you are going to get to the point where if you hear the hot potato song or the fruit salad song just one more time, you are going to rip your ears off and flush them down the toilet. In other words, you are going to need an adult, and to further clarify, you may not want that adult to be the old hubby, you make want to hear some good old fashioned girl talk (or guy talk); who's getting married from the old group, who's having a baby, who was arrested, who's dating: just good old fashioned girl talk (aka gossip).
   As for interests, well, mine have expanded. I'm interested in more things than I was before the birth of my lonely only, but I still have old interests as well. I didn't stop gaming because 'I'm too old for it.' I don't go as hardcore as I used to, and sit down and play for ten hours straight, but I still game. Why shouldn't I? My interests, your interests - they don't make you less of a person. I still travel; I still want to travel. I have to save up forever before I can afford to, and yes, once I had a kid, Disneyland made an appearance on my travel list, but I still went to Yellowstone. I think being able to share that trip with my daughter enhanced the experience, something I bring up because we've all heard the joke about "If you want to travel, don't have kids unless your idea of traveling is Disney." Not true. People travel with kids all the time, and watching my daughter's face fill with excitement when she saw Old Faithful erupt for the first time enhanced my own excitement. When she was around two, we went to Victoria, Canada, and having her with me did not detract from wandering around that pretty little town and seeing the shops and sights; I still had enormous fun and so did she, and I love, love, LOVE taking a Ferry, which was something that we did to get to Victoria. Turns out my daughter loves ferries too.
  The truth is, having a parent who is interested in other things besides parenting, and having that parent be willing to share those interests, only enhances that child's life. It doesn't have to be travel, or gaming. Sports, computers, fishing, church activities, travel, reading, socializing with friends, whatever they may be, those interests could become fun family outings. And even if they end up being interests that none of your family shares, well, you are still a complex person with multiple needs, and that's not a selfish thing to set aside some time just for you. I'm not saying ignore your family forever, but your family can give you an hour or two here and there. It's not wrong unless you decide you are going to take that hour right when little Suzy falls off her bike and breaks her face and needs medical attention immediately. Discounting disaster though, little Suzy can go enjoy some of her personal interests while you partake in yours. It won't kill her and it's not neglect.
   So I guess what I am saying is that while you should always grow and change as a person; don't let parenting be the excuse to kill off the person you are now. Of course you could work on bad habits, but just because you give up Bender Friday, that doesn't mean that you have to give up Football Sunday. Your kid won't thank you for it in the long run, and also, you need to be a fully functioning person for the day that your kiddo is ready to venture into the great big world on her/his own. You don't want to be the psycho mom who follows your kid to college or tries to become the third person in their marriage. Not good. 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

A Rant? About Technology

   I'm not a technologically gifted person; if you've been reading along, that much should be clear. That being said, for someone who is so challenged when it comes to all things computer, I sure get in a rage when things don't work right. Just now, I tried to log into one of my accounts online so that I could pay the bill. But for some reason, I'm getting a message saying that my account is unavailable, along with a 1-800 number. Instead of calling the 1-800 number, like a rational person, I try to log in three more times. When I am still unable to log into my account, I scream at the computer, "Fine! I didn't want to pay that damned bill anyway!" Because that's the rational, adult thing to do in this scenario. Call the 1-800 number? I don't want to talk to some dumb-ass service rep who doesn't speak my language and knows about as much regarding this issue as I do. I want my effing account to pull up so I can pay the bill, by myself, in the dark, like the antisocial little troll that I am.
    And that's the thing about technology, about computers and the internet: everybody has to utilize it. One reason I don't want to call that 1-800 number is that they charge a fee to pay by phone, whereas you can pay online for free. I don't even know how to mail in a payment; everything is 'paperless', so that's out too. No snail mail for me. Things ain't what they used to be. My daughter came home from school the other day complaining that they were supposed to be using their smartphones in class to get online and do research. My daughter, folks, is probably one of the few twelve years old girls to NOT have a cell phone of any kind, much less a smart one. What are all these kids doing running around with shitting-ass Iphones anyway? (And yes, I am aware of how much I just aged myself.) But the thing is, we don't have the money for that shit. I mean, you are likely aware of what the monthly bill is on a smartphone. I don't even have one; so far as I am concerned, my daughter's school is going to get a boot up the ass if having a smartphone is now required just to do classwork. That's too far, and this is a public school and I work in a grocery store, for crying out loud. This isn't rich-people school, this is poor-folk school.
   I'm not anti-technology. I suppose I can come across that way, but I'm really not. I think it's a great thing that the school teaches kids to do things like make Powerpoints and use Microsoft Office, and all those things that will help them in college, but they also need to keep in mind that not all these kids have access to some of these resources. I sent my daughter to school the other day with a good, old-fashioned research tool the other day - a book. This way, if the class does smart-phone research yet again, she can participate in some manner at least. Because frankly, even if money were not an issue, I'm not sure that I'm sold on a twelve year old's need to have the latest Iphone.
   And as for the bill collectors - well, they can just kiss my ass.