Friday, June 29, 2012

Photo Friday, Little Bill

My last electric bill was $280. This is what my electric bill was in 1974 and 1975. These old bills were in my ex-boyfriend's stuff that he sent me before he died.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Debbie Does Florida

For three days last week it rained around here, and by Saturday the cluster of clouds that drenched us had turned into Tropical Storm Debbie. Well on Saturday, Debbie Downer upped the volume, and dropped enough rain on us to overflow the swimming pool, and flood the back yard. At one point, armed only with a dustpan, I had to run outside in my underpants to fight the water lapping at the back door. As I scooped and bailed the water, a voice called from behind me.
"Alan, Alan, excuse me."
It was the nice young lady who rents the front apartment. I stood up, strategically placing the dustpan in front of me.
"What's up Ms. Tenantinthefront?"
"Our air conditioning isn't working, and I smell something burning."
Yes, there was a smoky smell in the apartment, and yes, the air conditioner was not working, and yes, I did put on some pants before I went over there to investigate. What I wasn't ready for, was spending three thousand dollars on a new air conditioning system. They came and installed it yesterday. At least it has stopped raining.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Sign Language

A nondescript, gray car, shaped like a bar of soap, and the occupant is waving at me. I have absolutely no idea who the hell it is. Almost every car here in Florida has those tinted windows, and almost every car here is similar in design. I wave back dutifully, so as not to piss off who ever the hell just waved at me. At least they're being friendly. When I was just a squirt, I could tell which neighbor was coming down the street from a quarter mile away. 1959 Chevy with those gull wing tail fins, Mr. Bonner. 1956 pink and gray dodge, Mr. Friese. 1956 Ford sedan with matte primer and no chrome trim, the punk kid who used to live across the street coming over to visit his girl friend three doors down.

Yesterday though, there was one car that stood out. It came barreling down the street as I was walking Sasha. As it came close I gave the signal. My hand, palm down, moving towards the pavement in little increments while I looked the driver in the eyes. He didn't seem to care and continued speeding towards us, so I screamed out, "Slow down!" as he passed. A skinny arm came out of the drivers side window, at the end of that arm was a fist with one finger sticking up.

The next day I asked the 'mayor' of 17th Terrace, Miss Diane, if she knew of anybody with a black Mustang. Miss Diane has lived on that street since 1956. She knows everything going on down there.
"Oh sure, that's Mr. Smith. They live down there by that basketball hoop next to the driveway."
So Sasha and I took a little walk down that way. Just as we got near that house, the black Mustang came pulling up in the driveway.
"Do you always give people the finger?" I said as the man got out of his car.
"Excuse me?"
"Were you driving this car yesterday. Somebody was speeding down here in that car, and gave me the finger when I yelled at them to slow down."
"My son had the car yesterday. What did he do?"
"Speeding. Gave me the finger."

I was a little asshole when I was a teenager. I once told a neighbor that I could speed down our street because there was no posted speed. He about blew an artery. He told my dad, and my dad said to me, "What the hell's wrong with you, you stupid asshole. It's a goddamned residential street. The fucking speed limit is twenty, you moron."
So I was very happy yesterday to have returned the favor. Unfortunately I doubt if that kids dad will have the flowery language my dad had.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Going Postal, Part Three

Me; "Did you get the mail?"
Mark; "No."

That of course means I have to go out and get the mail. So I went out to the mail box, and, well hooray, there is no mail. That means there are no bills, and no junk mail in the mail box. You remember the mail box, the single one that the crazy mailman wouldn't let us replace with one for each address on the building.
"You no can have. You get my permission. I say what mail box you have."
Said the crazy mailman who can't speak English, and I suspect cannot even read English.

The next day.

"Did you get the mail?"

Once again, there is no mail. The next day, the same thing except that this time Mark noticed something.

"Where the hell is my Netflix? Netflix is never late. I should have got my movie in the mail two days ago."

Which got me to thinking. One of my tenants has gone away on vacation for two weeks, and he mentioned that he put his mail on hold at the post office. So I called the post office, and asked.
"Do you have mail on hold for #### NE ##th Street?"
"Please hold."
Ten minutes later.
"Yes we do. We have mail on hold for Mr. R. Oh, and we also have some mail for Mark and Alan, oh, and also Mr. and Mrs. Tenantinthefront."
So I asked.
"Was the mail put on hold for everyone in the building?"
Surely Mr. R. didn't do that I thought. That would be quite stupid.
"No, no, it's only on hold for Mr. R."
So once again, our crazy mailman has screwed with us. That really pisses me off, but what pisses me off even more, is that the lady at the post office snickered when she told me that our stupid mailman had held everyone's mail.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Photo Friday, La Cage Aux Folles

Mark and I went to see our old friend George Hamilton in La Cage Aux Folles last evening.
Who would have guessed I would have a darker tan than George.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Video Thursday, Dizzay

This is a video of a kid who has just come out from under anesthesia.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Whitefly, White poop, Mark's garden

A short conversation with Mark.

"Is that one of the tomatoes from your garden?"
"You bought a tomato?"
"Hmmnn, Yes."
"You have tomatoes on the vine out there. Why don't you use those?"
"Mumble, mumble."

So I grabbed a pair of clippers, and went out to the garden. In two minutes I had three tomatoes, and a bowl of peppers.

"Here, use these. I don't know why you even bother with that goddamned garden. All the money you spend out there, and then you just let everything rot."
"Mumble, mumble,.....mumble."

That was last week, and that was the moment I decided that I wasn't going to waste anymore expensive water on Mark's garden. Switch to yesterday morning. I was sitting in my office staring out the window (A very effective way of dreaming up these little stories.), and I noticed that there were still a few tomatoes ripening out in the garden. I hadn't been out there in a few days, and in that time the spiders had woven an gigantic web throughout the garden. After beating back the spiders, and tearing into their web, I managed to reach in for the ripest tomato. My hand stuck to it as if it were covered in glue. But it wasn't glue, it was whitefly poop. The entire garden was doused with whitefly poop, making everything out there inedible.

"Why is my garden dead? Why haven't you been watering it?"
"Whitefly poop. Everything is covered in whitefly poop. You don't want to eat whitefly poop do you?"

That is such a great excuse, I just might use it next year. Only earlier.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Bad Feet, Bad Eyes

Geez my feet were hurting. All afternoon yesterday it seemed as though my feet wanted to go their own way. I have a problem with my feet caused by chemo-therapy. It's called peripheral neuropathy. Some days are worse than others, so when I noticed increased pain in my toes, and pressure on the bottom of my feet, it didn't surprise me. The only thing was that all my usual ways of dealing with the pain wasn't working. I took some aspirin, then I sat back in my recliner chair, and still my feet didn't feel right. I took off my little Nike slipper thingys that my mom bought me, and that gave me some relief, but as soon as I put them back on the discomfort continued. Finally, at around five in the evening, when I was preparing to walk Chandler, I went to take off my slipper thingys, and put on my shoes. When I looked down at my feet, the reason for all the discomfort became evident.

Monday, June 18, 2012

The Bastard Left Me

I'm sorry that this post might be a little depressing, but I'm kind of upset right now because he left me. I can't say that I wasn't surprised, because I was. It came as a total shock, and there were no warning signs whatsoever. Right now I keep thinking about how I never questioned him, and let him do whatever he wanted. Whenever he asked for money, I gave it to him without an argument. I was good to that man. I just don't know where I will ever find another mechanic as good as Carlos. Not only was Carlos a good mechanic, he was honest, and he was within walking distance. We could drop off the car and walk home from his shop. Now he's five miles away. Sure I could take a cab home, or find somebody to give me a ride, but it's just not the same. When I talked to him on the phone about moving his shop so far away, he said it had to be done, and as I said goodbye he said, "Goodbye my friend."
So it had come to that, we're just friends. Well I don't want another friend, I want a good, honest, mechanic within walking distance to my house. Now I have to go through that whole rigmarole again of one day stands, trying out new guy after new guy. I'll have to leave the car with a total stranger, and trust that he will be kind, and not overcharge me.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Photo Friday, The Gigantic Green Thing

Look what we grew!
Mark bought a little shoot at the Fort Lauderdale Orchid Show a while back.
I planted it in the planter, and I watered it.
This is what we got.


Thursday, June 14, 2012

Video Thursday, Don't Be Tardy

If you watch those stupid Real Housewives shows, including the spinoff called 
'Don't Be Tardy For The Wedding' this video will make more sense to you.
But even if you don't, it stands on it's own.


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The Apartment

I was sitting here yesterday, daydreaming about my first apartment in Chicago. It was in an old yellow brick, courtyard building, just off Clark street. I had never lived on my own before, and for only one hundred and twenty five dollars per month I finally had my privacy. Having grown up in a house with ten brothers and sisters, it seemed like heaven. I didn't mind having to walk up some stairs to reach it, nor the fact that when I tried to take a shower only a slow trickle of lukewarm water came out of the shower head. I had my own kitchen, with my own refrigerator, filled with my own food. Crappy food, but it was my food. The entire apartment consisted of one room, a small kitchen, and the bathroom. My living room now is larger than that entire apartment was. So what was it that brought back those memories? Clutter, Mark's clutter. The last square inch of kitchen counter space has been taken up by Mark's crap. I don't have any idea how he cooks in there. And then there are Mark's shoes. He scatters them around the bedroom, and every night I trip over them on my way to the bathroom. He has at least fifty pair, and I think he is trying to kill me with them. Kind of like the movie Gaslight, only more sinister. Clutter, clutter, clutter. That's what makes me yearn for the simplicity of that little studio apartment. Or, I could order up a dumpster.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Angry, Very Angry, Birds

I've been hearing about that video game called Angry Birds for awhile, and a few weeks ago I finally gave it a try. It was a Saturday afternoon when I noticed it was on Facebook, and clicked on the little red bird icon. It was early Sunday morning when I realized I didn't want to play Angry Birds anymore. How the hell could I have wasted that much time on a stupid video game? Anyway, it was when Facebook wanted me to purchase extra little tools to help me shoot birds at the pigs that I finally gave up playing that stupid game.

So this morning I was walking Chandler, and we came to his favorite pooping grounds down by the church. As usual Chandler sniffed and snorted his way along the fence, searching for that perfect spot to drop his poo pile. This morning however, I noticed that there was a mocking bird in the bushes above Chandler, making odd noises. It kept dancing from branch to branch, until it came flying out of the bush straight for my head. It was very Hitchcock like. Then, just as Chandler had finally found his spot, and got into his squat to take a crap, another bird came zooming down from the utility wires above and pecked him on the ass. Chandler immediately jumped up from the pooping position, and spun around, looking for the culprit. That's when both birds came swooping down, one aiming for my head, and the other for Chandler's butt. Obviously there was a nest nearby. Either that, or they were playing their own version of Angry Birds.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Fan-cy Feast

About fifteen years ago I hung a ceiling fan/light out on the back porch where the cats eat. For fifteen years that thing has given light to the little kitties as they devoured their free food, and cooled them with a nice little breeze on hot days. It wasn't all that good looking, in fact it was quite utilitarian, as I have always tended to purchase things on the side of low price over good looks. A few weeks ago Mark and I were in the Home Depot so that Mark could pick up a few more plants to kill in the back yard, when Mark came across a ceiling fan that was on sale.
"This looks so much better than that thing you have out on the porch now. I'm going to buy it."
"Sure, it'll look so much better, and I'll pay for it. All you have to do is put it up."
"Oh, it's heavy. Help me put it in the cart."
Well, that thing sat on the floor of our living room for over two weeks before I finally gave in and installed it. The job wasn't easy, and I gave my neighbors a new lesson in how many ways to use curse words, but it's up. So now, after two hours of working in ninety degree heat, and ninety percent humidity, not to mention the hoards of mosquito's drilling into my skin, the cats now have a new fan. The only problem is that even on high speed it seems to barely move the air. The poor cats are laying out on the porch, under that fan, sweating their little asses off. It does light the porch up nicely at night though. In fact it has the brightest light that I have ever seen on a ceiling fan. Just the thing to attract more of those blood thirsty mosquito's.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

A Downward Spiral

I'm out in the yard early, skimming some kind of white, gooey mess, and what appears to be splotches of frog eggs out of the swimming pool. It's a horrible mess that I've had to clean up every day for over a week. I know where the frog eggs are coming from, I can hear them in the trees every night croaking loudly. But what the hell is this white sticky stuff?

I've battled iguanas, rats, possums, and various other odd critters over the years, but this white crap was something new. I mentioned it to the nice lesbian down the street, and she immediately said, "White flies, you have white flies. I've been cleaning up that mess out of our pool all week."
So I looked it up on the Google, and sure enough, we are infested with white flies. Spiraling white flies to be specific. The worst part about it is that there appears to be no known remedy for the little bastards. As for the frog eggs, I find that if I over chlorinate the pool it keeps them from hatching. Unfortunately it does not make them go away. So if anybody enjoys swimming in a nice pool with a thin layer of weird goo on top of the water, this is the place. The only other alternative I can think of is a catfish farm. Yum, fresh catfish right outside my door.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

I Could Have Used a Different Photo

Let's face it, we've all seen that guy strolling down the street with his shirt off, his fat gut hanging out over his belt. It's disgusting and it always makes me want to yell out the car window, "Put the shirt back on fat ass!" So anyway, here I am again looking at another one of those slobs with a huge, bulging, pot belly with fat arms jiggling like puppies in a Mexican hammock. I know it would be better if I didn't look at the pig, but unfortunately I'm looking in a mirror.

That was last week. Seeing that horror finally caused me to do something about this pile of lard wrapped in skin that I am. This week I now have a beautiful stationary bike sitting in my office that I bought from Walmart. I purchased it on line because I can't stand the smell inside an actual Walmart. The reviews on line were all glowing, and for once a product that I have purchased, that was made in China, and I had to put together myself, is actually of high quality. It is rugged, and stable. It does everything that was promised, and it can also be folded away. Of course I will never fold it away, it has already become a handy place to hang Alicia's clothes.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Canned Laughter

A friend of mine told me about how he came home from work and found one of his kitchen cabinets laying on the floor of the kitchen. It had ripped away from the wall and smashed onto the floor. He said there were broken dishes and stuff all over the place. I mean, have you ever even considered such a thing happening in your house? Anyway, I thought it was a bit humorous that his house was falling down around him. A week later I talked to him again, and he mentioned that the cabinet was still on the floor, and that he had to keep walking around it every time he went in the kitchen. Suddenly the situation went from humorous to sad. It did get me to thinking though. I put up our kitchen cabinets just over ten years ago. I used three inch long screws, and fastened them securely into a two by six stud that ran across the entire kitchen wall. Certainly I have nothing to worry about.

Then I opened the cabinets, and took a closer look. I forgot that I live with a hoarder.

There must be a couple of hundred pounds of canned goods in the one on the right alone.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Photo Friday, What is it?

Honestly, what is it? I found it in one of the kitchen cabinets. Either Mark is planning a fantastic meal,or he's a terrorist.