How to Train Your Weatherman

I walked to the window

Looking for rain

Only to find there was none

IMG_2076

So what did I see

Instead, on the ground and the trees

But three inches of white, and then some

IMG_2074

It heartens me though

To I know what I know

Which is, the government is not the only

IMG_2094

 

High paying gig

Where none give a fig

If they get it right, they’re just phonies

IMG_2091

Weathermen, you see

Could squirt shit when they sneeze

Then turn ’round and call it baloney

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So, like with our po-li-ti-cos

That’s just how it goes

They feed us baloney shit sammies

IMG_2075

 But next time, I think

When that breeze starts to stink

I’ll send a pic of a dick being slammied!

you would not! would you?

 Today’s forecast:  Squashed Dick, and Tortured Balls
Tonight’s forecast: Periods of Pain and Nausea

Tomorrow’s forecast:  Well now, that depends.  Doesn’t it?

I Was a Toddler-age Tosspot

Yes, I confess.
By the time I was 3, I was hooked on the ol’ brew.
(And, apparently, I passed that on to my eldest. Though, I prefer a bottle)
Observez Vous…

Gee, thanks Mom!

Gee, thanks Mom!

Actually, I was more hooked on Dad…I was his toddlin’ sidekick in mighty whitey tights!  Anything he did, I wanted to do. Anywhere he was, I wanted to be.  Not so unusual for little girls to consider their Dads their first love and first superhero.

Always ready to catch me

Always ready to catch me

Book Two 37 (2)Book Two 75Roy, Grands, Rhonda (2)

 

 

There again too…I guess boys are of the same mind.  Like father like sons?
You betcha!
Good VT Stock

 

 

 

 

oldies 11 - Copy (2) - Copyoldies 11 - Copyoldies 11 - Copy (2)

 

 

 

 


This is how the story goes…

Once upon a time, in a little town far, far away, there was a little girl who lived with her father, mother, and 3 brothers. That’s her below…the twinklin’ toddler in her mighty whities…
rhondaThe budding housewifeMother got to my hair again

Her father was a hard-working man; working 2, sometimes 3, jobs to make ends meet.  And her Mother was not your ‘typical for the times’ housewife either.

Isn't she pretty?

Isn’t she pretty?

Because, busy as she was, having had 4 kids in 5 years, she still held a full-time job outside the home.

But, this was also a time when families lived close together, daycare centers were non-existent, and family was relied upon to pitch in where they could. (Glad it was you, Gram)

Now, seeing as these were hard-working folk, what little free time there was, was catch-up time, family time, friends time. picnic parties, horseshoes, reunions, celebrations…but all the time, busy!
Picnic at PartlowsBook Four 12Island Pondroy and chickie 35th cake

But…let’s not forget the biggie…working on cars in the yard.

That all-american male’s favorite pastime.  Grease-monkeyin’ in the driveway.
b10Working-Old-Car-onworking-on-car
Am I right?

So anyway, this is how a toddlin’ Jimmyna Olsen to her Daddy’s Superman, gets her tights in a twist…

A typical weekend afternoon, circa 1963…

The boys tinkerin’ in the driveway with the women folk fixin’ victuals and watchin’ babies inside.
A regular tune ‘er up, tink’er up, smoke’em up, drink’em up, Sa’day afternoon.
Rev her up..sounds good!
Close her up…hit the dirt for a test run.
No need for cleanin’up, we’re comin’ right back.

Ya with me?  Good.

To continue…

The boys are gone.
The women are inside with (most of the usual 9) of the kids.
One smarty pants little toddler decided she missed her Daddy and went outside looking for him.
She calls for him.
No answer.
She can’t see him.
But wait…there…in the driveway.
“What’s that?” she wonders in her terribly three tiny little brain.
“Can it be?” she asks herself
“Why I think it’s a Daddy bottle and ooooooh, he left it for me!” silently gigglin in delight she was
“I love a good Daddy bottle. It’s so much more yummy than my ucky ol’ boring one.” she hmmphs at the thought.
She looks around.
No one.
She listens keenly for any sound that would suggest Mommy was coming to take her Daddy bottle away.
Nothing.
“Yay” she thinks as she’s already on the move, toddlin’ toward that dark brown delight she knows is filled with liquid gold.
She stretches those short and chubbies just far enough to grab the neck of that father-forgotten treasure, tips it to her lips like the bottle pro she is…and chug-a-lugs.

That was the last thing I remember prior to waking up in the hospital God knows how much time later.

You see, the brew I knew and thought of as Dad’s liquid gold, was, what I now call, liquid fire.

As was the custom then…and I’ve seen it again and again in the years since…these man-boys would use beer bottles as containers for gasoline when working on their carburetors. They were always plentiful, usually empty, so why buy a gas can when a beer bottle will do?

Exactly! Logic boys….logic!

The madness that followed can quite easily be imagined…and remember, this was an itsy bitsy town.
I don’t remember much of the ensuing chaos…but have heard the details often.

The boys returned to find my Mother holding me in a panic.
No other vehicle.
No hospital nor ambulance within 8 miles and 13 minutes (rural roads ya know).
And a non-breathing child turning colors no human should be.
Parents and me in the car.
Dad driving hell-bent for leather, Mom holding me.
My head out the window like a dog.
I do remember being told NOT to throw up.
I do remember having zero conscious thoughts at this time.
Arrive at the hospital alive, though I was told I didn’t take a single breath, as well as my Mother being told that it’s a miracle I didn’t vomit, for that would have been the end of my life as I knew it.
I do remember too, waking in a crib-bed with a top (?), like a cage, feeling trapped.
But, when I could, I remember looking out the window and seeing my Memere’s house and it made me feel better.


 Now, all of us that a parents, now this irrefutable fact:

You CANNOT turn you back on a toddler
EVER.
Even for a second.
Because one second is one second TOO LONG!


But…I think we can all agree…it happens.

Shit happens!

beer cap

This Bud’s for Anyone but ME!

The joy of discovering the cure for MINIpause…

When we last spoke about Mini Me’s Misadventurous adventure…the Misogynistic Mini Mechanics had replaced her engine and assorted internal organs, but left her night-blind in one eye because I wouldn’t pay them $79 bucks to change her bulb.

That aside, Mini and I had a bit of a Me to Mini convo, where I told her I was taking her into a Mini-Mechanic Free Zone so she better be on her best behavior.

If not…I was abosofrigginlutely ready to take her into the woods and introduce her Bonnet to her Boot, if you catch my drift.

She apparently didn’t want her face to meet her arse because we made it home in one piece and in time for supper.

That was Saturday.

Do you know where she was on Tuesday?

Yup.

Back in the shop.

It seems, the poor dear was low on oxygen and needed a new sensor.
(O2 Sensor…get it?)

Anyway…

$405 bucks later, she was breathing freely again, which is good, cause I had a special day planned for that Mini-bitch.

You’ll remember the little convo she and I had before we left the dealership?

Well…

SAYONARA SISTER!

So, it is now official…I’ve had my last Mini-break

I. Am. Now…

Post-MINI-pausal!


 

I’d like to introduce you to my new friend…

Su.Be.Du…Sue for short

This gal has stars in her eyes

 

Let’s see how we get along…’cause I’ve already warned her…

I know a place in the woods…
;)

Forgive me Father…For I’m Gonna Piss Someone Off (I Just Know It)

I am compelled to say this because, having walked away from the morning news about this…I had such a bad taste in my mouth, I had to rinse.

And as you know, this is where I do it.

You are my Mouthwash. :)

So, here goes…

I’m surprised that by now, that FB isn’t all a-Twitter, about the newest black/white scandal

It appears, this year, the members of the Academy of Motion Pictures, has neglected to nominate even one black thespian. I know right?

Annnnnnd, not even one black director! What next I ask.

Wait…there’s more…not one single woman director was nominated either…even though (as has been suggested) everyone knows Ava DuVernay, the black, female, director of Selma should have been a shoe in.

There even seems to be some lamenting the fact that she could have been the first African American Female Director to get an OSCAR.

Well guess what? SHE. STILL. CAN!
As there were NO OTHER black female directors nominated, she’s still got a shot at that title.

True?

Now, I don’t mean to sound sarcastic, but if I do it’s because I am.
[A bit of a sarcastic statement there.]

I just cannot believe that EVERYTHING and EVERYONE, even the OSCARS with 6,000 members of the Motion Picture Academy, have to walk, talk, and apparently vote, on eggshells where black and white are concerned.

Okay…should there have been black actors and directors, as well as female directors nominated?
Maybe.
Could be.
But…it’s all subjective isn’t it?
To each his own?
Vote for who and what you believe to be the best?

Are we now going to institute a quota system…the Oscar version of Affirmative Action?

If so, what shall we call these special awards?
Awards given to someone because they represent a minority?
What shall we call these unearned, yet apparently deserved, awards to celebrate diversity over and above all else?

We cannot use OSCAR…that’s taken.

How about a MARTIN for the men?
(Seems fitting to name it after MLK doesn’t it?)

How about a SELMA for the browner women actresses and directors?
(Browner is NOT my term by the way…I borrowed it from a self-proclaimed brown commentator on CBS as she was telling the viewing audience that America was getting browner, so we need to be more open to accepting it)

And maybe NORMA RAE for those of a different or lighter hue?

Do you see how ludicrous this all is?

Do you see how ridiculous a face to face conversation containing ANY of the above would be incredibly demeaning on its face?

Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe I’m just being naïve thinking that the folks voting for these awards are voting their preferences and not looking to maintain some kind of white status quo.

I don’t know anymore.

What I DO know is, it frustrates me to think that any, and I mean ANY, professional would welcome accolades based on the color of their skin or whether the bump’s in the pants or the t-shirt.

The views expressed here are my own and reflect completely and honestly what I believe.

I think we are ALL DESERVING of everything we deserve.

But I also know we don’t always GET what we deserve.

That’s life.

And that’s it.

“Misogynistic MINI Mechanics” or “WHOA…Them Dudes Make a Shit-ton of Dough!

After 3 weeks, I leave the Great Frozen North (a.k.a. The Northeast Kingdom) Friday, on the journey south to reclaim Mini Me and head home to Virginia on Saturday.

The hotel room near the dealership is booked so I can arrive at the service door bright and early Saturday morning to pick her up.

Speaking of the dealership…I was in contact with them today, as I had asked them to do an ‘extended’ test drive to make sure she was sound, knowing I was leaving for Virginia directly from picking her up.

Word back from the Wrench Wench was…

“The test drive went really well, the Mini’s purring, but one of her high beams is out.”

“Which one?” I ask

“Driver’s side high beam” she replies

“Really? I had that replaced in July” I remind her, since she has all the service records.

“Maybe the other dealership used an aftermarket bulb” suggested she.

“Not sure what you mean by aftermarket bulb Marissa. Last I checked, the bulbs were not MINI specific. As far as I can tell from the receipt, they installed a Sylvania 9008, which seems to be the standard.”

“Do you want us to fix it? If you do, I can order the bulb today and it will be here tomorrow.”

“Order it?  You don’t HAVE one?  What would that cost me Marissa?”

“$78.96″

“To replace a bulb????”

“The cost of the bulb is $13.96 plus tax. Labor to install is $69.13. And, if you had it replaced at a dealership last time, maybe they would offer a warranty on the bulb?”

“Marissa, the cost to replace that same bulb in July was $36 complete. I think charging $69 just to install a bulb is MORE than UNREASONABLE! I’m not sure why your quote is so high, but would appreciate if you could work with me on the price (not to mention, between me and the warranty company, you just got paid 8,600 bucks!”

” I can’t really speak for other dealer’s pricing. All dealerships vary around the country usually because of state differences.”

“Well, I think I’ll pass on your installing a replacement bulb and I’ll take care of it when I get home.”


Sing along with me?

I dream of Mini with the bright gold lights

Yeah, you’d think so wouldn’t you?

I’m really not convinced this entire scenario would have played out the same way had I, been a bloke and not a sheila.

Even a sheila as mouthy as me.

Who’s to know for sure.

All I do know, is that come Saturday morning…I’m back behind the wheel, headed home.

And depending on how fast I dare to drive until I know Mini Me is with me or against me…

14 or so hours later (I’m taking the road less traveled home), I’ll be in my own bed, snugglin’ with my Sadie, and scratching my husband.

Really?

Really?

Oh wait…In my own bed, scratching my Sadie and snugglin’ my husband.

Either way…I’ll be at a Ford dealership the day after.

Depend on it!

I’ll let ya know how it goes.

:)

Is That Wonder Woman Whistlin’ Dixie?

A short re-cap…

Toddler Troll ’14 has died…
troll

…and Damien ’15 now reigns

Do NOT let that innocent face fool you!

Damien declared the war of Two Ought One and Four was not over.
He was now spearheading the charge.

El Jefe sent his mangy minion “Mini Masher Mickey” to mangle my Mini

mini masher mickey 1

Mini Masher Mickey

Mad as Hell Wonder Woman (that’s me…just ask my SideKick Mimi)
Wonder_Minion_FinalWEB

WW ready to kick some ‘service’ ass and take some names…

I know she’s not a minion,  but I could NOT resist!  Could you?


 Alright…that brings us to right here and right now…

So
How DOES a mad as hell Wonder F-Ugly end up Whistlin’ Dixie?

(She puts her lips together and blows, silly)
whistling

No, seriously…

After she hangs up the phone from the conversation with the Mini Service Manager, as follows:

Manager: I have some news.

Me: Oh yeah?

Manager: The warranty inspector was here today.

Me: Yeah, so I was expecting.

Manager: He looked at the engine.

Me: Right. That’s what he was there for.

Manager: He said it was a broken Tensioner.

Me: Yeah, you told me that already. Were you unsure?

Manager: No, he just confirmed it.

Me: Good. Now what?

Manager: He agreed the engine needed to be replaced.

Me: I thought you had NEWS? (Not OLDS!) You already told me that.

Manager: I also told you in my experience, they would not pay for it.

Me: Yeah, I didn’t forget that part.

Manager: Well…

Me: Well…..what?

Manager: They agreed to cover it.

Me: Really?

Manager: Yes. They were going to cover a ‘used’ one but we ran the numbers an
it was within a couple hundred for a new one, so you’re getting a new one.

Me: I’d have gotten a new one anyway, but go on.

Manager: They are paying me directly, so all you have to cover is the new battery
and turbo oil line, which are not covered.

Me: How much?

Manager: $692

Me: You do know both the battery and that oil line were replaced last year?

Manager: Yes, but since you’re getting a new engine, we don’t want to screw around with old parts.

Me: Ok. How much are the two replacements?

Manager: $350 for the battery, $200 for the line, plus tax and labor.

Me: $350 for a battery? Jesus, what the hell is it made of?

Manager: It’s specific to Minis.

Me: Really? No other car can use it?

Manager: Well, not exactly, but this one’s housing and stuff are made specifically
for Mini.

Me: Ah, I see. (You guys figure since I’m getting a new engine paid for I may as well just suck up a 300 percent mark up on a battery.)
Well, that’s good news anyway.

Manager: I need to order the engine, and once it’s in, we’ll need a few days. You
may be able to get the car by Wednesday.

Me: Actually, I’ll be able to get the car when I can get a ride to Hartford and not before.

Manager: I’ll call you when it’s ready.

Me: I’ll wait for that call.


 THAT’S how a Mad As Hell Wonder Woman ends up Whistlin’ Dixie

thanks for the cartoon bobtheartist.com

And pay attention Girlies (and Nerdies too)…
It pays to let people (especially people ‘helping’ you) that you’ve done your homework.
It’s good to let them know that you know that they know that they are hiding/lying to you and you know it.

Got it?

Good  :)

Best Beware of Babies dat Wear the Crown of New Year’s Day

Not every diaper clad newborn is all sugar and spice, and everything nice and innocence is their poker face!

You will recall at the end of my Year in Review post, I thumbed my nose at Baby 2015, telling him I was ready for him and to Bring. It. On!

Remember?

DO NOT DO THAT

Since his older brother 14’s demise; having donned the crown and taken the reigns in his chubby little claws, this little peckerwood has let it be known that the contents of his dirty diaper are even more potent than his brothers.

I mean, last year, all his brother managed to accomplish was hooking me up with mover thugs from Hell, break my leg, flood my home, and render Mini Me deaf, dumb, and blind, in heavy traffic traveling 75 mph on Interstate 91.

Maybe more than your average bad luck for one year…then again, I survived.

Right?

Now…little baby butthead ’15 has picked up the gauntlet and raised the stakes.

Oh yeah…this precious bundle of nose-goo, sticky fingers, and stinky britches, has taken his brother’s antics to a whole new level.

[It dawns on me…15’s name is Damien!]

So, Damien decides to Call me on my injured Mini Me and Raise me a dead one.

Yup

Dead – Caput – No-Go-Mini-O

Cause of death – Complete Engine Failure (due to timing chain/tensioner failure)

Odds of Resuscitation – 1 in $8,584

Them’s some pretty shitty odds, wouldn’t you say?

When I asked the service manager if this was a known problem, the answer I got was
“There have been no recalls for your model and model year for this issue”

(Well duh…that’s why BMW is being sued, for the defect and for disallowing the repair under the warranty)

Was I informed that there was, however, a Technical Service Bulletin issued in 2008 about this problem?

Nope

What’s a Technical Service Bulletin (TSB) you ask?
Technical Service Bulletins, or TSBs, are recommended procedures for repairing vehicles. Not to be confused with recalls, a TSB is issued by a vehicle manufacturer when there are several occurrences of an unanticipated problem.

Or that since 2008, up to and including 2014, BMW is still receiving complaints about this vehicle and has yet to issue a recall?

Nope

It was intimated, however, that this was a MAINTENANCE issue and not a mechanical one. In easy speak, that means “This was your fault dummy”

Oh yeah? You think so? Seeing as I have all the regular maintenance receipts, I think not. But that’s not for them and me to fight about

The Warranty Service company is sending an “inspector” there, Monday or Tuesday

That’s the lucky duck that I get to ‘discuss’ this with


If you do read any of the comments in the (short) articles I’ve listed below, you’ll note they are current.

Meaning, 2014
For an issue that arose in 2008
(Unanticipated?  Really?)

For anyone considering a Mini Cooper (new or used), here’s a little light reading.

http://www.consumeraffairs.com/automotive/mini.html

http://www.law360.com/articles/530596/bmw-sued-over-mini-cooper-engine-defect

For anyone considering a BMW – All I would say is Do Your Research!
Not just on the car, but the company’s willingness to stand behind their cars during and after, the warranty period.

As a matter of course, anyone looking to purchase a new/used vehicle, would be well advised to visit the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration’s website.

Here, I’ll give you a couple…
NHTSA.GOV or
Safercar.gov

These sites offer you access to Recall Notices / Complaints / Investigations / Defects

And did you know there was such a thing as an Auto Alliance?
Yeah, made up of 12 Automobile Manufacturers (including BMW) dedicated to, among other things, VEHICLE SAFETY

http://www.autoalliance.org/

They also have a facebook page :)
(https://www.facebook.com/autoalliance)

Did I find anything useful or helpful or safety related on the Alliance’s website?
One thing…
Consumer Guide – How to find safety related information (which is what led me to the NHTSA)

I wish I’d been more ‘aware’ before purchasing my vehicle. But we all know what good wishes are.

And…not to sound sexist…or even to suggest that if you have bulging britches instead of bumpy t-shirts, you know any more than I do…but they saw me coming.

So, for you guys, if you’re more nerd than grease monkey…RESEARCH

And gals, if you know a wrench from a socket and can drain an oil pan or change a tire…good on ya!
But if not and you are buying a car on your own…trust me when I say…
DO YOUR DUE DILIGENCE and visit these sites

There really are very few (if any) good guys left in the big bad corporate world anymore
Gone are the days of handshakes and standing by your product or your work

I used to be of the mind, that these types of lawsuits were initiated by sleazy lawyers chasing big pockets on a hope and a prayer that one day they’ll catch the big one
I don’t think that anymore

In fact, I wish there were MORE professionals out there looking after the little guy or gal
Not for a huge payoff, but because it’s the right thing to do and if it puts money in their pockets, good for them

But I know how it works, and I also know it’s not going to change

So the least I can do is put out there, information I wish I’d had (or had been smart enough to look for) before I dropped thousands on a car only to be in the position of putting thousands more into it 2 years later…just to make it run.

Damn it…

Damien?
Just………go……oh never mind

No more wagging fingers and spouting off for me

I’ll leave the little pipsqueak, smelly britches alone

From now on, This Cheese Stands Alone
(what DOES that mean anyway?)